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Frederick II. to back him, that “nobility was ancient riches,” whence also the Spanish were wont to call their nobles ricos hombres, and the aristo cracy of America are the descendants of those who first became wealthy, by whatever means.
Petroleum will in this wise be the source of much good blood among our posterity. The aristocracy of the South, such as it is, has the shallowest of all foundations, for it is only skin-deep, - the most odious of all, for, while affecting to despise trade, it traces its origin to a successful traffick in men, women, and children, and still draws its chief revenues thence. And though, as Doctor Chamberlayne consolingly says in his “ Present State of England,” “to become a Merchant of Foreign Commerce, without serving any Apprentisage, hath been allowed no disparagement to a Gentleman born, especially to a younger Brother,” yet I conceive that he would hardly have made a like exception in favour of the particular trade in question. Oddly enough this trade reverses the ordinary standards of social respectability no less than of morals, for the retail and domestick is as creditable as the wholesale and foreign is degrading to him who follows it. Are our morals, then, no better than mores after all? I do not believe that such aristocracy as exists at the South (for I hold with Marius, fortissimum quemque generosissimum) will be found an element of anything like persistent strength in war, - thinking the saying of Lord Bacon (whom one quaintly called inductionis dominus et Verulamii) as true as it is pithy, that "the more gentlemen, ever the lower books of subsidies.” It is odd enough as an historical precedent, that, while the fathers of New England were laying deep in religion, education, and freedom the basis of a polity which has substantially outlasted any then existing, the first work of the founders of Virginia, as may be seen in Wingfield's “ Memorial,” was conspiracy and rebellion, — odder yet, as showing the changes which are wrought by circumstance, that the first insurrection in South Carolina was against the aristocratical scheme of the Proprietary Government. I do not find that the cuticular aristocracy of the South has added anything to the refinements of civilization except the carrying of bowie-knives and the chewing of tobacco, - a high-toned Southern gentleman being commonly not only quadrumanous but quidruminant.
I confess that the present letter of Mr. Sawin increases my doubts as to the sincerity of the convictions which he professes, and I am inclined to think that the triumph of the legitimate Government, sure sooner or later to take place, will find him and a large majority of his newly adopted fellow-citizens (who hold with Dædalus, the primal sitter-on-the-fence, that medium tenere tutissimum) original Union men. The criticisms towards the close of his letter on certain of our failings are worthy to be seriously perpended; for he is not, as I think, without a spice of vulgar shrewdness. Fas est et ab hoste doceri : there is no reckoning without your host. As to the good-nature in us which he seems to gird at, while I would not consecrate a chapel, as they have not scrupled to do in France, to Nôtre Dame de la Haine (Our Lady of Hate), yet I cannot forget that the corruption of goodnature is the generation of laxity of principle. Good-nature is our national characteristick; and though it be, perhaps, nothing more than a culpable weakness or cowardice, when it leads us to put up tamely with manifold impositions and breaches of implied contracts, (as too frequently in our publick conveyances,) it becomes a positive crime when it leads us to look unresentfully on peculation, and to regard treason to the best Government that ever existed as something with which a gentleman may shake hands without soiling his fingers. I do not think the gallows-tree the most profitable member of our Sylva ; but, since it continues to be planted, I would fain see a Northern limb ingrafted on it, that it may bear some other fruit than loyal Tennesseeans.
A relick has recently been discovered on the east bank of Bushy Brook in North Jaalam, which I conceive to be an inscription in Runick characters relating to the early expedition of the Northmen to this continent. I shall make fuller investigations, and communicate the result in due season.
HOMER WILBUR, A. M.
P. S. – I inclose a year's subscription from Deacon Tinkham.
I HED it on my min' las' time, when I to write ye
started, To tech the leadin' featurs o' my gittin' me con
varted; But, ez my letters hez to go clearn roun' by way o'
Cuby, 'T wun't seem no staler now than then, by th' time
it gits where you be. You know up North, though secs an' things air
plenty ez you please, Ther' warn't nut one on 'em thet come jes' square
with my idees : They all on 'em wuz too much mixed with Cove
nants o' Works, An' would hev answered jest ez wal for Afrikins
an' Turks, Fer where 's a Christian's privilege an' his rewards
ensuin', Ef 't ain't perfessin' right an eend 'thout nary
need o' doin'? I dessay they suit workin'-folks thet ain't noways
pertic'lar, But nut your Southun gen'leman thet keeps his
parpendic'lar; I don't blame nary man thet casts his lot along o'
his folks, But ef
cal'late to save me, 't must be with folks
thet is folks ; Cov'nants o' works go 'ginst my grain, but down
here I've found out The true fus’-fem’ly A 1 plan, here's how it
When I fus' sot up with Miss S., sez she to me,
sez she, “Without you git religion, Sir, the thing can't
never be ; Nut but wut I respeck,” sez she, “ your intellectle
part, But you wun't noways du for me athout a change
o'heart: Nothun religion works wal North, but it's ez soft
ez spruce, Compared to ourn, for keepin' sound,” sez she,
“ upon the goose ; A day's experunce 'd prove to ye, ez easy ʼz pull a
trigger, It takes the Southun pint o' view to raise ten bales
a nigger; You 'll fin' thet human natur', South, ain't whole
some more ’n skin-deep, An' once 't a darkie 's took with it, he wun't be
wuth his keep." “ How shell I git it, Ma'am ?” sez I. “ Attend
the nex' camp-meetin',” Sez she, “an' it 'll come to ye ez cheap ez on
bleached sheetin'." Wal, so I went along an' hearn most an impressive
About besprinklin' Afriky with fourth-proof dew
o' Harmon: He did n't put no weaknin' in, but gin it tu us
hot, 'Z ef he an' Satan 'd ben two bulls in one five-acre