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Apostolical Fathers, which, though not cited or alluded to by Dr. Hessey or his predecessors, deserve to be noticed in connexion with this subject; and which, if they betray some forgetfulness of the divine origin of Jewish observances, show, we think, a largeness of view in estimating Christianity rare since the days of St. Paul, and certainly highly applicable to this subject.
With regard to the timid scrupulosity of the Jews, in the ordering of their food, and their superstition about their Sabbaths I do not suppose that you want to be informed by me [writing as a Christian apologist]. For that they should make distinctions between objects created by God for man's use, receiving some of these things as good results of the Creator's power, and rejecting others as useless and superfluous, can surely be hardly deemed due reverence for God. And their close and servile watchings of the stars and moon for the exact observance of months and days; and their adaptation of God's natural laws; and of the changes of the seasons, as inclination prompts, whether to purposes of festival or of mourning, - who shall consider a proof of godliness, and not rather of folly? That the vanity then, and the errors which are common to the Jews, and to the heathen, and the meddlesomeness and pretentiousness which distinguish the Jews, are things from which Christians are and ought to be free, I think I have sufficiently shown you. But as to the mystery of their own peculiar religion, think not to be able to learn that from man. For Christians are not distinguished from the rest of mankind by country, or by language, or by customs. For they neither inhabit any cities of their own, nor use a separate dialect, nor lead a marked and peculiar life. And certainly by no device or forethought of curious men have these tenets of theirs been discovered; nor is it any human form of doctrine that they insist on, as some sects do. But dwelling both in Grecian cities and cities of the barbarians, according as the lot of every man is cast, and following the customs of the country in their dress and living, and other particulars of life, they demonstrate the wonderful and (as all men confess) the inexplicable character of their principles of conduct. They live in the countries they belong to, but it is as sojourners. They take part in all things as citizens, yet patiently endure all things as strangers
. Every foreign state is a fatherland to them, and every fatherland a strange country.
Their residence is on earth, but their citizenship is in heaven. They comply with the laws which are established, yet in their own lives gain a victory over the laws.
And, to sum up all, what the soul is in the body, that Christians are in the world. (Epist. ad Diognetum, iv. v. vi. apud Patres Apostolicos, edit. Hefele.)
Art. XI.- 1. Slavery and Secession in America, Historical
and Economical. By THOMAS ELLISON. London: 1861. 2. The American Crisis considered. By CHARLES LEMPRIERE,
D.C.L. London: 1861. 3. Causes of the Civil War in America. By John LOTHROP
MOTLEY. (Reprinted by permission from the Times ').
London : 1861. 4. The Great Conspiracy and England's Neutrality. Mr. JAY'S
Address at Mount Kisco, New York. The fourth of July,
1861. THE 'HESE are ephemeral records of the great controversy which
convulses and divides the Western Hemisphere — an endless subject of wonder, of speculation, of instruction, and of sorrow to those who, like ourselves, survey this tremendous conflict from a state of political society even more remote from that of America than these islands are from the Atlantic coasts. When we consider the multitudes of men affected by this catastrophe, the vast extent of territory abandoned to the horrors of civil war, the momentous political principles engaged in it, the obscure destiny of four millions of slaves, and the severity of the trial applied to those democratic institutions which have been supposed by many profound thinkers to embody and to represent the future government of the most civilised nations, the mind loses itself in the attempt to find an issue from this labyrinth of anarchy. For it is unquestionably a state of anarchy, when a great nation is rent asunder, the minority appealing to arms against the will of the majority, the majority itself relying for its own defence on forces hastily summoned to the capital, the law powerless, the ordinary conditions of freedom suspended, the fundamental compact impugned, and authority maintained, where it is maintained at all, by the edge of the sword. Never did a greater change befall any people, than this revolution which has come upon the Americans in the midst of their reckless material prosperity; never did a more tremendous visitation teach a nation that they can claim no exemption from the operation of those laws which have in all ages regulated the political interests and contests of mankind.
Mr. Ellison's volume is a serviceable compendium of the events which have taken place, and especially of the state-papers, speeches, and opinions of the men who on both sides have borne a prominent part in them. His own sympathies are avowedly with the North. He draws a fair and accurate picture of the effects of slavery on the resources of the South, and he arrives at the conclusion that, in spite of the incalculable difficulties which surround such a measure, gradual emancipation can alone extricate the Southern States from the social perils in which they stand. The Federal armies which line the banks of the Potomac are not the only, or the most formidable antagonists of the Southern chiefs. Who knows what designs pervade that mysterious, mute, but not unintelligent phalanx in the rear of the confederate forces, whose power may ere long become commensurate with their wrongs? Mr. Ellison, however, is not an abolitionist, in the extreme sense of the term. His views are moderate ; his facts are carefully collected, and upon the whole his book is the most useful contribution we have seen in Europe to the history of this crisis in American affairs.
We cannot speak in equally favourable terms of Dr. Lempriere's performance, nor is it easy to conceive what can have induced an English writer, a member of an Inn of Court and an Oxford College, to appear before the world as the champion of all that the public opinion of this country and the general conscience of the civilised world have most irrevocably condemned. His style is singularly confused and incorrect. His acquaintance with the elementary principles of the American Constitution is so imperfect that he asserts that the President would not become . Governor of the country until he was accepted by the legisla• ture both of the separate States and the whole combined;' whence he argues that there is no such government as the Union, and that the exercise of power by President Lincoln is an act of despotic usurpation. But these absurdities are not the darkest blots on Dr. Lempriere's pages. Far worse than these is the total moral insensibility of this book to the great principles engaged in this contest. We were not prepared to meet with an English writer, at the present day, who should roundly assert that throughout the Southern States, apart 6 from the question of slavery, the negro has a recognised and
comfortable position in society. He is provided and cared for • by law, and is confessedly the happiest and merriest of mortals « in any subordinate capacity.' (P. 49.) Nor indeed is it easy to understand what is meant by the position of the negro in the South, apart from the question of slavery. But enough of such revolting absurdity - a melancholy proof of the lengths to which men may be led by a love of paradox, amounting to absolute indifference to the claims of truth, freedom, and justice.*
We have noticed these books in order to show that the opinions both of the North and of the South have their representatives in this country and in our current literature. But our friends beyond the Atlantic would be grievously mistaken if they imagined that because we are wont to hear questions argued on both sides, and are not intolerant of the most opposite opinions, we are therefore indifferent to the result, or at all disposed to modify the convictions which have long made Great Britain the foremost champion of the freedom of all the races of mankind. Our neutrality of opinion, and the neutral policy of the British Government, rest upon totally different grounds. Nobody here accepts the audacious avowal of the South, that slavery is the corner-stone of the social fabric; nobody doubts that a society pervaded and encompassed by an army of domestic enemies, in which even the ties of labour and industry are converted into instruments of oppression, must end in some frightful convulsion. But whatever may be our opinion of the condition and policy of the slave
* Dr. Lempriere's opinions are worthy of the preamble of the Louisiana Ordinance of Secession of the 26th January, 1861, which was in the following terms:
•Whereas it is manifest that Abraham Lincoln, if inaugurated as President of the United States, will keep the promises he has made to the Abolitionists of the North ; that those promises, if kept, will inevitably lead to the emancipation and misfortune of the slaves of the South, their equality with a superior race, and before long to the irreparable ruin of this mighty Republic, the degradation of the American name, and corruption of the American blood ;
• Fully convinced, as we are, that the slavery engrafted on this land by France, Spain, England, and the States of North America is the most humane of all existing servitudes; tliat to the slave of the South it is far preferable to the condition of the barbarians of Africa or the freedom of those who have been liberated by the powers of Europe; that it is in obedience to the laws of God, recognised by the Constitution of our country, sanctioned by the decrees of its tribunals; that it feeds and clothes its enemies and the world, leaves to the black labourer a more considerable sum of comfort, happiness, and liberty than the inexorable labour required from the free servants of the whole universe ; and that each emancipation of an African, without being of any benefit to him, would necessarily condemn to slavery one of our blood and our race;
Resolved, &c.' When people in this country talk of sympathy with the Southern States, it is desirable they should know what the principles are to which they are supposed to give a blind assent.
holding South, the public mind of England, and we may confidently add of Europe, is totally unable to follow the North in its determination to maintain the connexion with the South by force of arms, to spend its blood in conquering and subduing, if necessary, those very States, which are now the object of so much hostility and abhorrence, and consequently to assume a still closer and more direct responsibility in dealing with this question of slavery, although it is admitted to be one of all but insoluble difficulty. In our opinion, that which has really been a burden and a curse to the most civilised portions of North America, is not the existence of slavery in the cotton fields of the South, but that the institution of slavery extended its baneful influence over the whole Union, even to the States which had long ceased to hold slaves of their own. Under the existing Constitution of the United States, which the freemen of the North are now in arms to defend, slavery must be considered to form part and parcel of the law of the Union, not only from the well-known clause which has been made the basis of the Fugitive Slave Law, not only from the decision of the Supreme Court of the United States in the Dred Scott case, but especially from the very last amendment or addition to the Constitution passed on the 3rd March of this year, that is, on the eve of President Lincoln's inauguration, which expressly provides
• That no amendment shall be made to the Constitution, which will give Congress power to abolish or interfere within any State with the domestic institutions thereof, including that of persons held to labour or servitude by the laws of the said State.'
Thus in the very crisis of the present quarrel, and at the moment when able writers like Mr. Motley were endeavouring to prove to Europe that the Union formed one great nation, represented by its Congress and its President, to execute the supreme law of the commonwealth, Congress did in fact declare itself powerless and incompetent to abolish or interfere with slavery, and thereby recognised in more precise terms the full and absolute right of the several States to deal exclusively with their domestic institutions. But as it is well known that the several States (or at least the greater part of them) never will abolish slavery of their own accord, we are entitled to assert, with this clause before us, that slavery is protected and perpetuated by the Constitution itself, in those States in which it alfeady exists.
This single fact seems to us to afford a more conclusive answer than whole reams of argument to the high prerogative doctrines (as we should call them in Europe) recently put forth by the champions of the Federal Constitution. According