Page images
PDF
EPUB

“Oh no, Mynheer Baptiste, it is no great mat- an Indian smokes his pipe, and sings songs, and ter. It only conzarns your life.”

tells stories, and provokes his roasters, and thinks “ Sacre! Monsieur Dutchman," cried Baptiste, it little more than a comfort to be roasted.” shrugging and turning pale, “spose you tink it “O ciel !” cried the Canadian, apparently feelvon mighty dem leet ting to concern my life. ing faint at the horror of the idea. “You are von Monsieur Dutchman, vat for make you look so dem hard heart Dutchman, to make sport of dis dei big? I pray you, sare, speak out vat for you farouche affair !" stop me ?"

“ Still, Baptiste, something must be done. You The Dutchman continued to economize the know the Spotted Panther is not a personage to luxury of his joke as long as possible, and pro- be trifled with. Have you made up your mind ceeded in his customary dialect, and with the most for your answer ?” perfect sang froid, to ask him if he had ever « Tis von dem sommaire business, ca! O mon known such an Indian demoiselle as Tselle'nee? Dieu, aidez moi. Oui, oui. I vill marree dis dem

“Sare, vat for you axe me dat? Tis mine own crapeau. Spose—how like dem fool you talk! affair, sare !"

that it be von leet ting to be roast? Certainment, “Well, Baptiste, they say she has had a dream, me no make experimong." and that her face is painted as black as a thunder “ Very good,” answered Hatch, with the same cloud. It is common report that the matter closely unmoved calmness. “Then we need not discuss concerns you. At any rate, the Spotted Panther the matter of roasting at all. I thought you would is not to be trifled with, and he takes a deep inte- prefer the wife. But you will please tell me the rest in the business. You know the Spotted very words I am to report to the Spotted Panther." Panther?"

“O mon Dieu! Tis trop dur, a ting tres mise“ Yes, sare, dat garçon is one dem farouche rable. Me love all de demoiselles. Dey all love villain.”

Tis ver hard affair, to tie me up to von dem Perhaps you like his daughter better ?"

crapeau, like un chien in a string." « Sacre! no. She is von dem—what you call « Are these the words you wish me to carry him in Hinglees?"

back to the Spotted Panther ?”. “ Never mind. She will make you the better “No, certainment, no. You tell that sauvage wife for that. I have an errand to you from the gentilhomme, vid my best complimens, that I am Spotted Panther.”

trop sensible of de great honneur which his belle “ You make me frissonne all over my body,” | fille have don me. Spose his belle fille no say said Baptiste, looking deadly pale.

that word to me fuss, den I tell her I offer my “I have it in charge from the Spotted Panther love and my devotions and my heart wid von to ask you, Baptiste, if you are disposed to marry satisfaction infini, and dat I lead her to the altare T'selle'nee as soon as she is out of her black paint with great plaisir, sacre !" and her dream? They say she loves you to dis- Hatch omitted the last word, and reported all traction."

the rest with great fidelity. The invincible solem“ Sez bien,” replied Baptiste, giving his wonted nity of the Dutchman's narrative gave greater zest shrug of self-complacency; “so do twentee oder to the enjoyment of the Indians, who all knew, demoiselles of dese dem sauvages. Dat all for vat amidst these forced compliments, what a bitter pill you stop me ?"

matrimony was to such an indiscriminate gallant. “No. I am commissioned only to propose to you the simple question, Do you choose to marry T'selle'nee, or not? and you are to let me report an immediate answer."

HEROISM OF THE INDIAN. « Parbleu! Monsieur Dutchman. Spose I say

me.

[ocr errors]

FROM THE ART OF BEING HAPPY.

no?"

“ You will hear the consequences, and then I The timid and effeminate white man shivers will say him no, if you wish it."

and scarcely credits his senses, as he sees the “ Vell, sare, vat are de big consequence if I say young Indian warrior smoking his pipe, singing no? Tis von dem farouche affair, ca !"

his songs, boasting of his victories and uttering his “ He proposes you one of two alternatives to menaces, when enveloped in a slow fire, appamarry his daughter, or be roasted alive at a slow rently as unmoved, as reckless, and unconscious fire. It is no great matter, after all. The beau- of pain as if sitting at his ease in his own cabin. tiful T'selle'nee, or a roasting, that's the alterna- All that has been found necessary by this strange tive.”

people to procure this heroisın, is, that the childTis von dem—what you call him, alternateeve ? ren from boyhood should be constantly under a O mon Dieu ! Mon Dieu !" cried Baptiste, cross- discipline, every part and every step of which ing himself, and seeming in an agony—“You tends directly to shame and contempt at the least dem Dutchman have no heart on your body, or manifestation of cowardice in view of any danger, you no tell me dat dem word, and half grin your or of a shrinking consciousness of pain in the enteeth all the time, sacre! You call him leet mat- durance of any suffering. The males, so trained, ter to roast von Christian like a pig, sacre !" never fail to evidence the fruit of their discipline.

“Why, certainly, you don't think it so great a Sentenced to death, they almost invariably scorn thing to be roasted? You know, Baptiste, that to fly from their sentence, when escape is in their

[ocr errors]

a

power. If in debt, they desire a reprieve, that fifteen feet in height. Those brilliant birds, the they may hunt until their debts are paid. They black and red bird of this country, seem to delight then voluntarily return and surrender themselves to flit among these young groves, that are inunto the executioner. Nothing is more common dated to half their height. Nature is carrying on than for a friend to propose to suffer for his friend, her most vigorous efforts of vegetation below. If a parent for a child, or a child for a parent. When there be wind or storm, the descending flat and the sufferer receives the blow, there is an un- keel boats immediately make for these groves, and blenching look which manifests the presence of plunge fearlessly with all the headway they can the same spirit that smokes with apparent uncon- command among the trees. Should they be of cern amidst the crackling flames.

half the size of the human body, struck fifteen feet A proof that this is the fruit of training and not from the ground they readily bend, before even a of native insensibility, as others have thought, and frail boat. You descend the whole distance of a as I formerly thought myself, is, that this contempt thousand miles to New Orleans, landing at night in of pain and death is considered a desirable trait fifteen feet water among the trees; but, probably, in only in the males. To fly like a woman, like her no instance within twenty miles of the real shore, to laugh, and weep, and groan, are expressions of which is a bluff. The whole spectacle is that of contempt, which they apply to their enemies with a vast and magnificent forest emerging from a ineffable scorn. The females, almost excluded lake, with its waters, indeed in a thousand places, from witnessing the process of Spartan discipline in descending motion. The experienced savage, by which the males acquire their mental hardihood, or solitary voyager, paddles his canoe through the partake not of the fruits of it, and, with some few deep forests, from one bluff to the other. He finds exceptions, are shrinking and timid like the child- bayous, by which one river communicates with ren of civilization.

the other. He moves perhaps along the MissisI know that there will not be wanting those sippi forest into the mouth of White river. He who will condemn alike the training and the hero- ascends that river a few miles, and by the Grand ism as harsh, savage, unfeeling, stoical, and un- Cut off moves down the forest into the Arkansas. worthy to be admitted as an adjunct to civilization. From that river he finds many bayous which comBut no one will offer to deny that the primitive municate readily with Washita and Red river ; Christian put in conflict with a hungry lion, that and from that river, by some one of its hundred Rogers at the Smithfield stake, that the young bayous, he finds his way into the Atchafalaya and captive warrior, exulting and chanting his songs the Teche; and by that stream to the Gulf of while enduring the bitterest agonies that man can Mexico, reaching it more than twenty leagues inflict, in the serene and sublime triumph of mind west of the Mississippi. At that time, this is a over matter, and spirit over the body, is the most river from thirty to an hundred miles wide, all imposing spectacle we can witness, the clearest overshadowed with forests, except an interior strip proof we can contemplate, that we have that within of little more than a mile in width, where the eye us which is not all of clay, nor all mortal; or doubt reposes on the open expanse of waters, visible bethat these persons endure infinitely less physical tween the trees. . . pain, in consequence of their heroic self-possession, No person who descends this river for the first than they would have suffered had they met their time, receives clear and adequate ideas of its grantorture in paroxysms of terror, shrinking, and self- deur, and the amount of water which it carries. abandonment.

If it be in the spring, when the river below the mouth of Ohio is generally over its banks, although

the sheet of water that is making its way to the THE MISSISSIPPI.

gulf is perhaps thirty miles wide, yet finding its

way through decp forests and swamps that conBelow the mouth of Ohio, in the season of in- ceal all from the eye, no expanse of water is seen undation, to an observing spectator a very striking but the width, that is curved out between the outspectacle is presented. The river sweeps along, line of woods on either bank; and it seldom exin curves or sections of circles, of an extent of ceeds, and oftener falls short of a mile. But when from six to twelve miles, measured from point to he sees, in descending the falls of St. Anthony, point. The sheet of water that is visible between that it swallows up one river after another, with the forests on either side, is not far from the me- mouths as wide as itself, without affecting its width dial width of a mile. On a calm spring morning, at all; when he sees it receiving in succession the and under a bright sun, this, to an eye that takes mighty Missouri, the broad Ohio, St. Francis, in its gentle descending, shines like a mass of bur- White, Arkansas, and Red rivers, all of them of nished silver. Its edges are distinctly marked by great depth, length, and volume of water; swala magnificent outline of cotton-wood trees, gene- lowing up all and retaining a volume, apparently rally of great size, and at this time of the year of unchanged, he begins to estimate rightly the inthe brightest verdure. On the convex, or bar side creasing depths of current that must roll on in its of the bend, there is generally a vigorous growth deep channel to the sea. Carried out of the Baof willows, or young cotton-wood trees of such lize, and sailing with a good breeze for hours, he astonishing regularity of appearance, that it always sees nothing on any side but the white and turbid seems to the unpractised spectator a work of art. waters of the Mississippi, long after he is out of The water stands among these trees from ten to sight of land

FROM HISTORY AND GEOGRAPHY OF MISSISSIPPI VALLEY.

WILLIAM ELLERY CHANNING.

(Born 1780. Died 1842.]

His mo

This eminent man was born at Newport in waist, and with a study cap on his head," Rhode Island on the seventh of April, 1780. appearing like a man who had nothing to do His great-grandfather, John Channing, the with the world. In a sermon which he first of the name who came to America, was preached at Newport, when he was himself a native of Dorsetshire in England; his grand- an old man, he presented an interesting picfather, John Channing, was a merchant in ture of those peculiar and venerable persons, Newport; and his father, William Channing, around whom clung so many recollections of after graduating at Princeton College in 1767, his early life. became a lawyer, and was for many years Washington Allston, who was but one year Attorney General of Rhode Island.

his senior, went to Newport in 1787, and conther, to whose piety, gentleness, and faithful- tracted an intimacy with him which continued ness he bore affectionate and grateful testi- through youth, the strength of manhood, and mony, was a daughter of William Ellery, one old age. They roamed together through the of the signers of the Declaration of Indepen- picturesque scenery, which still attracts andence, and afterward a member of Congress, nual crowds of strangers, and “amid this gloand Chief Justice of his state. Through her rious nature" received impressions of the great he was descended from Anne Bradstreet, the and beautiful which had an influence in deterwife of Governor Bradstreet and daughter of mining their modes of thought and habits of Governor Dudley, who two hundred years ago life. Richard H. Dana, acousin of Channing, was styled by one of the most learned and dis- and afterward a brother-in-law of Allston, in tinguished of the Puritans “the mirror of her a few years wandered, an inspired boy, over age, and glory of her sex.”

the same fields, and on the rocky coast lisIn 1780 Newport was the residence of two tened to the roar and dashing of the waters of the most remarkable men who have ever of that ocean, which he was to describe with lived in New England, the Reverend Doctor such effect in his noble poetry. Allston, Hopkins, whose writings had so great an in-Channing, and Dana were thus connected in fluence upon theological opinions in the last childhood. In old age they often visited, from century, and the Reverend Doctor Stiles, fa- their neighbouring homes in Boston, these mous for profound and various learning, and scenes of their earliest inspiration. Two of “ virtues proportioned to his intellectual ac- them, in the order of their ages, have gone to quisitions,” who was afterward President of the world in whose atmosphere they almost Yale College. They were ministers of the seemed to live while here among us. two Congregational churches in the town, and Channing entered Harvard College when though in many respects very different from but fourteen years of age. Among his classeach other, and representatives of rival parties, mates here were the late Judge Story, and they were both friends of the Attorney Gene- Doctor Tuckerman, with whom, until the death ral, and often at his house. Doctor Channing of that most amiable mana period of fortystates that when a child he regarded Doctor seven years—he lived as brother, giving Stiles with more reverence than any other hu- and receiving “ thoughts, feelings, reproofs, man being, and to the influence of that extra- encouragements, with a faithfulness not often ordinary man in the circle in which he was surpassed.” He had been through the cusbrought up, he attributes a part of the indig- tomary range of study in the Latin and Greek nation which he felt toward every invasion of authors before he went to Cambridge, and for human rights. He was also much attached a year or two he continued to exhibit a predito Doctor Hopkins, whom he used to see rid- | lection for classical studies, but before the end ing on horseback through the streets, “ in a of his term he became comparatively indifferplaid gown fastened by a girdle round the ent to them, and devoted his chief attention to moral philosophy, history, and general lite- tor of the church in Federal street in Boston, rature. His views of life were serious, his and was ordained on the first of June, 1803. plans determined, and his studies were already The congregation worshipping there was then made to bend in some degree to his prospec- small, but on this account the situation was tive pursuits. Yet the highest honours of preferred to another which was offered to him, his class were awarded to him when he gra- for the slenderness and debility of his frame duated, in 1798.

would not allow him to labour much as a paSoon after leaving Cambridge Channing rochial minister. His countenance was beaubecame a private tutor in a family of Virginia, tiful, his voice, always tremulous, was variand went to reside in that state. His health ably musical, and his articulation slow and hitherto had been remarkably good, but now distinct. His manner altogether was natural, it failed, and he was to the end of his life persuasive, and earnest. He immediately bean invalid. After his return to Newport he came popular, and the increase of his society pursued, without any professor or teacher to soon rendered necessary the erection of a new guide him, his studies in theology. When and larger place of worship. A visit to Euin the fulness of his years and fame he stood rope much improved his health, and filled his to instruct where in his youth he had been a mind and heart with new purposes. He relearner, he reminded his hearers of this period tained his connection with the society until in his life, in a manner equally graphic and his death, though in 1824 a colleague was beautiful: “I had two noble places of study," associated with him, and in 1840 he was rehe said, “ one the edifice now so frequented | lieved from the obligation of performing any and useful as a public library, then so deserted public duties. that I spent day after day and sometimes week Doctor Channing's earliest publications after week amidst its dusty volumes, without were on controversial theology. His sermon interruption from a single visiter;... the other, on the Unitarian Belief, preached at the ordithe beach, ... my daily resort, dear to me in nation of the Reverend Jared Sparks, in Baltithe sunshine, still more attractive in the storm. more, in 1819, is perhaps the most ingenious Seldom do I visit it now without thinking of the and polished of his dogmatical essays. It work, which there, in the sight of that beauty, excited an extraordinary degree of attention, in the sound of those waves, was carried on and several of the ablest Trinitarian writers in in my soul. No spot on earth has helped to the country replied to it. In 1820 he printed form me so much as that beach. There I lifted in the Christian Disciple a paper on the same up my voice in praise amid the tempest. There, subject, entitled The Moral Argument against. softened by beauty, I poured out my thanks- Calvinism. But though he continued to feel giving and contrite confessions. There, in a deep interest in this and other religious conreverential sympathy with the mighty power troversies, they could not have been congenial around me, I became conscious of power to one who was so sensitively alive to the within. There struggling thoughts and emo- beautiful ; and notwithstanding the reputation tions broke forth, as if moved to utterance by he acquired by these writings, he was by no nature's eloquence of the winds and waves. means fitted by his intellectual constitution for There began a happiness surpassing all worldly a pursuit of which the main element is logic. pleasures, all gifts of fortune: the happiness of He was brought more directly into notice communing with the works of God.” Here literary man by his essay on National is an index to his character. A mild, con- Literature, published in 1823, and his Retemplative enthusiast, with a mind imbued marks on the Character and Writings of John with taste, and stored with the best learning, Milton, which appeared in the Christian Exand an ardent desire that he might be useful, aminer for 1826. This article was written he went into the world, proposing to himself very hastily, and somewhat unwillingly, to as his mission the elevation of men to his own oblige a friend who felt an interest in the sale kindness, serenity, and dignity, and the bring- of an edition of Milton's Treatise on Christian ing of them into the same converse with nature Doctrine, then just published in Boston. On and God.

reading it in print he concluded not to avow Soon after he began to preach he received himself its author, which he might well do, and accepted an invitation to become the pas- / for however creditable it would have been to

as

rank among

a writer of inferior powers, it was below the it makes men in all cases the judges of the level of his own, and had in it very little that necessity and justice of their own actions. It was original or distinctive. It was supposed is one of the instances in which passion obby his more judicious friends, who were not tained a mastery over his usually serene underin the secret, to be an imitation of his style, by standing. He was too sagacious a man not some clever young man of the university, and to know that obedience is the first condition one, who has since become eminent as a cler- of freedom ; that it is better for a nation to gyman, being accused of it, thought it worth suffer any thing than to do injustice; that there while to advise Dr. Channing of his inno- can be no true liberty where the authority of cence, as he considered the essay a poor one. the law, whether it be right or wrong, while The surprise of the author at the reputation to it exists, is not superior to every other poswhich it attained was never concealed. It is sible obligation, contingency, or conviction, but justice to him to state that his own esti- except, were such a thing to be looked for, mate of it was perfectly proper. The Edin- the direct and audible interfering voice of God. burgh reviewer's criticism of it was perhaps The essay is full of misrepresentation and injust, though it was not fair to judge of the me- vective, and we are constantly reminded in rits of an author by one of his poorest works. reading it that the author was labouring to

His Remarks on the Life and Character of make out a case for which he was sensible Napoleon Bonaparte have not been assigned that he had inadequate materials. their proper

his writings. This In 1829 Doctor Channing published in the article is more able than that on Milton; un- Christian Examiner his Remarks on the Chadoubtedly it was written with care, and con- racter and Writings of Fenelon; a paper in tained his deliberately-formed opinions; but which are developed with much ability some much of its celebrity was owing to adventi- of his ethical views, particularly in reference tious circumstances, by which it cannot be to the dignity of human nature. sustained. Its merits are in its generalities : There is a perceptible and steady increase it has none as a delineation of the character of strength and beauty in Doctor Channing's of that great man, whose name, given to the writings, and they are more profound, origiwinds at Toulon, became an undying sound. nal, and characteristic, the more he gave himIn the period of his captivity, men held their self up to his true mission, which was, not so breath at the stupendous crime, but when he much to dispute about systems of faith, as to died, one universal hiss from all the quarters of bring acts, customs, and institutions to the the globe poured upon England, so that every standard of Christian morality, and in the spicheek was flushed in the scorching breath of rit of a genuine philanthropy to advocate the human indignation. An attack upon the vic- cause of peace, gentleness, and righteousness. tim was a cosmetic for the festering faces of Of peace he was an early and persevering the criminals, all the better for being import friend: in 1816 he published his first dised from a nation that was deemed less friendly course on the subject; when there was danger to Britain than to France. This state of feel- of a rupture with France, in 1835, he again ing was the secret of the temporary success raised his voice in remonstrance; and in 1839, of Scott's libel on Bonaparte, and it occa- when there was a prospect of a conflict with sioned the republication of Channing's essay Great Britain, in a lecture before the Ameriin every conceivable form. The republican can Peace Society, he brought out fresh proofs is a candid judge, it was said, and if his of the insensibility of the mass of the comportraiture is correct, it was right to violate munity to the crimes and miseries of war, and every law to rid the world of such a monster. the general want of Christian and philanthroThis is Doctor Channing's position: he as- pic views in regard to this barbarous umpirage sumes that Napoleon was resolved to make of right. He discussed the subject in all its the earth a slaughter-house, and to crush every bearings, with a faithfulness, earnestness, and will adverse to his own, and denies that against power of illustration, which showed a warm such a person mankind should proceed by writ- personal sympathy and thorough acquaintance ten laws and precedents. This is a doctrine with it; and the extent to which his writings which sanctions almost every mob and mas- were read and remarked upon proved that they sacre since the conspiracy against Christ, for struck a responsive chord in the national heart.

« EelmineJätka »