Page images
PDF
EPUB

they come hither to overturn our state, and lay waste our country.

10. I could wish, indeed, that it were not so; and that the war we are now engaged in concerned our glory only, and not our preservation. But the contest at present is not for the possession of Sicily and Sardinia, but of Italy itself. Nor is there behind us ancther army, which, if we should not prove the conquerors, may make head against our victorious enemies.

11. There are no more Alps for them to pass, which might give us leisure* to raise new forces. No, soldiers ; here you must take your stand, as if you were just now before the walls of Rome. Let every one reflect, that he is now to defend, not his own person only, but his wife, his children, his helpiess infants.

12. Yet let not private considerations alone possess our minds. Let us remember that the eyes of the senate and people of Rome are upon us; and that, as our force and courage shall now proye, such will be the fortune of that city, and of the Roman empire.

PART OF HANNIBAL'S SPEECH TO THE CARTHAGINIAN

ARMY ON THE SAME OCCASION.

On what side soever I turn my eyes, I behold all full of courage and strength. A veteran infantry; a most gallant cavalry; you, my allies, most faithful and valiant; you, Carthaginians, whom not only your country's cause, but the justest anger, impels to battle. The hope, the courage of assailants, is always greater than that of those who act upon the defensive.

2. With hostilet banners displayed, you are come down upon Italy. You bring the war. Grief, injuries, indignities, fire your minds, and spur you forward to revenge. First, they demanded me; that I, your general, should be delivered up to them ; next, all of you who had fought at the siege of Saguntum ; and we were to be put to death by excruciating tortures.

* Pronounced lee' zure. hos'to..

3. Proud and cruel nation! Every thing must be yours, and at your disposal ! You are to prescribe to us with whom we are to make war, with whom to make peace! You are to set us bounds ; to shut us up between hills and rivers; but you are not to observe the limits which yourselves have fixed !

4. “ Pass not the Ibe'rus." What next? “ Touch not the Saguntines ; Saguntum is upon the Ibe/rus; move not a step towards that city.” Is it a small matter, then, that

you have deprived us of our ancient possessions, Sicily and Sardinia ? You would have Spain too! 5. Well, we shall yield Spain, and then- -you

will

pass into Africa. Will pass, did I say? This very year, they ordered one of their consuls into Africa, the other into Spain. No, soldiers, there is nothing left for us but what we can vindicate with our swords.

6. Come on, then. Be men. The Romans may, with more safety, be cowards. They have their own country behind them ; have places of refuge to flee to; and are secure from danger in the roads thither. But for you, there is no middle fortune between death and victory. Let this be but well fixed in your minds, and, once again,

I

say, you are conquerors.

EXTRACT FROM DR. BECKNAP'S ADDRESS TO THE INHAB

ITANTS OF New-HAMPSHIRE, AT THE CLOSE OF HIS HISTORY OF THAT STATE.

CITIZENS OF New-HAMPSHIRE, HAVING spent above twenty years of my life with you, and passed through various scenes of peace and war within that time; being personally acquainted with many of you, both in your publick and private characters, and having an earnest desire to promote your true interest, I trust you will not think me altogether unqualified to give you a few hints by way of advice.

2. You are certainly a rising state; your numbers are rapidly increasing ;' and your importance in the political scale will be augmented, in proportion to your improving

the natural advantages which your situation affords you, and to your cultivating the intellectual and moral powers of yourselves and your children.

3. The first article on which I would open my mind to you is that of education. Nature has been as bountiful to you as to any other people, in giving your children genius and capacity. It is then your duty and your interest to cultivate their capacities, and render them serviceable to themselves and the community.

4. It was the saying of a great orator and statesman of antiquity, tha: “The loss which the commonwealth sustains, by a want of education, is like the loss which the year would suffer by the destruction of the spring.”

5. If the bud be blasted, the tree will yield no fruit. If the springing corn be cut down, there will be no harvest. So, if the youth be ruined through a fault in their education, the community sustains a loss which cannot be repaired; “ for it is too late to correct them when they are spoiled.”

6. Notwithstanding the care of your legisla'tors in enacting laws, and enforcing them by severe penalties; notwithstanding the wise and liberal provision which is made by some towns, and some private gentlemen in the state ; yet there is still, in many places, “a great and criminal neglect of education.”

7. You are, indeed, a very considerable degree better, in this respect, than in the time of the late war; but yet much remains to be done. Great care ought to be taken, not only to provide a support for instructers of children and youth, but to be attentive in the choice of instructers; to see that they be men of good understanding, learning and morals; that they teach by their example as well as by their precepts; that they govern themselves, and teach their pupils the art of self-government.

8. Another source of improvement, which I beg leave to recommend, is the establishment of social libraries. This is the easiest, the cheapest, and most effectual mode of diffusing knowledge among the people. For the sum of six or eight dollars at once, and a small annual payment besides, a man may be supplied with the means of literary improvement during his life, and his children may inherit the blessing.

9. A few neighbours, joined together in setting up a library, and placing it under the care of some suitable person, with a very few regulations, to prevent carelessness and waste, may render the most essential service to themselves and to the community.

10. Books may be much better preserved in this way than if they belonged to individuals ; and there is an advantage in the social intercourse of persons who have read the same books, by their conversing on the subjects which have occurred in their reading, and communicating their observations one to another.

11. From this mutual intercourse, another advantage may arise ; for the persons who are thus associated may not only acquire, but originate knowledge. By studying nature and the sciences; by practising arts, agriculture and inanufactures, at the same time that they improve their . minds in reading, they may be led to discoveries and im- . provements, original and beneficial; and, being already formed into society, they may diffuse their knowledge, ripen their plans, correct their mistakes, and promote the cause of science and humanity in a very considerable degree.

12. The book of nature is always open to our view, and we may study it at our leisure.* « Tis elder scripture, writ by God's own hand.” The earth, the air, the rivers, the mountains, the rocks, the caverns, the animal and vegetable tribes, are fraugnt with instruction. Nature : is not half explored ; and in what is partly known there are many mysteries, which time, observation and experience must unfold.

13. Every social library, among other books, should be furnished with those of natural philosophy, botany, zoology, chymistry, husbandry, geography and astronomy; that inquiring minds may be directed in their inquiries ; that they may see what is known, and what still remains to be discovered ; and that they may employ their leisure,* and their various opportunities, in endeavouring to add to the stock of science, and thus enrich the world with their observations and improvements.

14. Suffer me to add a few words on the use of spirituous liquor, that bane of society, that destroyer of health,

* Pronounced lee' zure.

sea, the

[ocr errors]

morals and property.

Nature indeed has furnished her vegetable productions with spirit ; but she has so combined it with other substances, that, unless her work be tortured by fire, the spirit is not separated, and cannot prove perni

Why should this force be put on nature, to make her yield a noxious draught,* when all her original preparations are salutary?

15. The juice of the apple, the fermentation of barley, and the decoction of spruce, are amply sufficient for the refreshment of man, let his labour be ever so severe, and his perspiration ever so expensive. Our forefathers, for many years after the settlement of the country, knew not the use of distilled spirits.

16. Malt was imported from England, and wine from the Western or Canary Islands, with which they were refresh.ed, before their own fields and orchards yielded them å supply. An expedition was once undertaken against a nation of Indians, when there was but one pint of strong water (as it was then called) in the whole army, and that was reserved for the sick; yet no complaint was made for want of refreshment.

17. Could we but return to the primitive manners of our ancestors, in this respect, we should be free from many

of the disorders, both of body and mind, which are now experienced. The disuse of ardent spirits would also tend to abolish the infamous traffick in slaves, by whose labour this baneful material is procured.

18. Divine Providence seems to be preparing the way for the destruction of that detestable commerce. The insurrection of the blacks in the West Indies has already spread desolation over the most fertilet plantations, and greatly raised the price of those commodities which we have been used to import from thence.

19. If we could check the consumption of distilled spirits, and enter with vigour into the manufacture of maple sugars, of which our forests would afford an ample supply, the demand for West India productions might be diminished; the plantations in those islands would not need fresh recruits from Africa ; the planters would treat with humanity their remaining blacks; the market for slaves would

* Pronounced drăft. t fertil.

« EelmineJätka »