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name or epitaph, is doubtless the monument of Jefferson. It was here placed by his executor; and the panel on which was to be inscribed the epitaph which he wrote for himself, has never been inserted in the stone! I was told that it is lying with the iron gates designed for the enclosure on the bank of the river where they were landed, and that no man has troubled himself to see that they reach their destination!"
After such a specimen of its tender mercies, and devotion to the remains of its dead by the world, who will commit to its care the homes of the departed? No, the Spirit of the world is the Spirit of Judas: it begrudges the pence which piety freely devotes to the purchase of precious ointment, with which to anoint the bodies of loved ones for their burial.
BY THE EDITOR.
"A thing of beauty, is a joy forever."
A beautiful child!
In form tender,
Said the parents, and smiled
As it grows each day,
In size and beauty,
The parents' pray
Beam from its eyes
Meekly and bright:
Hang like an awning
And turn, at its dawning,
Hearts that now know,
What it can bestow.
So young and Sender,
So meek and mild.
THE INSTABILITY OF HUMAN GREATNESS.
BY REV. W. E. LOCKE,
Principal of the Lancaster Female Collegiate Institute.
BUT comparatively few of the great and noble, as commonly denominated among men, have been actuated in the achievment of their famous exploits by a higher motive than the desire of popular applause. To obtain this, various means are taken, and different courses are pursued. The warrior aims to acquit himself "gloriously" on the field of battlethe lawyer seeks pre-eminence in the judgment hall, and the statesman in the council chamber-the scholar desires to be distinguished for his learning-the orator for his eloquence-and the philosopher for his wisdom. "Glory" is the great object for which most men are laboring-the praise of their fellow men. This hungering and thirsting is not confined to men of exalted rank. The poor and illiterate oftentimes feel its force as powerfully as those who are more elevated in society. It distinguished Diogenes in his tub as clearly as it did Alexander on his throne. And surely the angelic host, who witness this ambitious strife, must be pained in heart at the ignorance, vanity and folly of man, who thus wastes his existence at chasing a shadow. A noble mind should scorn to place reliance merely on the acclamations of the populace. The idol of their affections may be highly exalted, only to receive a more terrific fall. The huzzas of the multitude may shake the forum, only to be followed by angry sneers and serpent hisses. The page of history presents numerous instances of individuals, elevating themselves above the masses of men, and encircling themselves with a radiant halo, which promised to increase in brightness through all time. But, in a short period storms arose; dark clouds enveloped the popular demi-god-the elements raged, and the rising meteor vanished, or fell, like Lucifer to the earth, to muse over defeat and anticipated ignominy.
We have read of the Carthagenian hero, who, assembling his hordes of mercenary allies, like the agile chamois, leaped over the snow-crested Alps, and, as a sweeping mountain torrent, poured his numerous legions upon the Latin plains. As if riding upon the winds, he swept all before him, almost to the very gates of Rome. The scene changes, and the same Hannibal, expelled from his own country, is seen an humble suppliant at the feet of Antiochus; or swallowing a poisonous drug, and perishing ignominiously in the obscure kingdom of Bithynia.
History makes mention of one, who, from the lower rank of life, ascended to the highest pinnacle of power. Exalted far above his compeers he seemed to meditate supreme dominion. But, fortune frowned, and the Pope's most noble Cardinal, the prime minister of his "majesty," King Henry VIII. of England, and the renowned favorite of the French and Spanish courts, was hurried from the presence of his king to his private palace, from thence to the tower, and to his grave.
But a few years have passed since the Corsican Chief trampled upon the destinies of Europe. The frosts of Russia, as well as the heated sands of Egypt, witnessed his tremendous power. He went forth the
idol of the French nation, the terror of the rest of Europe, and the wonder of the world. But, what was his end? The dilapidated walls of a solitary cottage on the sea-belt rock of St. Helena give answer. "He was, but is not." He has passed away like a dream of the night. His name is handed down to posterity, as a warning to political aspirants and ambitious heroes. But few of the vast number, who have been highly exalted in worldly honor-from Nimrod the mighty Hunter to Napoleon the scourge of nations, abode the final sentence of their own age, much less that of succeeding generations Their names, they may have engraved upon the page of history, but their glory has departed.
Human greatness may charm the carnal fancy of men, but like the apples of Sodom, it shall reward him who obtains the glittering prize with only worthless ashes.
There are two kinds of nobility among men-hereditary and self-acquired. The former descending upon the heirs of noble parents, is marked by high sounding and empty titles. Individuals of this class, by a physi ological fiction, are supposed to be of nobler blood than the humbler mass; but real elevation of character, vigor of intellect and all the characteristics of a truly noble mind are, by no means, the uniform attendants of this "noble blood."
By far the most of those who have astonished the world by the efforts of a powerful intellect and a wonderful genius, have ascended by their own exertions, to inscribe their names on the "Temple of Fame." It is true that we have had an Aristotle, a Bacon and a Byron, ennobled by the rank and fortune of their ancestors; and in whose sphere of intellectual attainment, very few, if any, have ever been able to surpass them. Yet the list of those who have attained to lofty eminence from the lower ranks of society is vastly greater. Among these may be named a Homer, a Demosthenes, a Horace, a Shakspeare, a Johnson, a Franklin and a Fulton. If any deserve the appellation of "great," these are they, who, by dint of mental energy, in the face of numerous obstacles and immense difficulties, ascend to the lofty summit of popular favor. The public approbation may follow the names of such men down the stream of time, and invest them with an honored dignity upon the page of history; but could even they return from the other world, they would join in earnestly exhorting the young to set up before them a nobler aim than the acquisition of mere worldly fame, a beautiful, but empty bubble! to be relied upon by no one-to be earnestly sought for by no honorable mind.
If we inquire into the causes for this instability of human greatness, we shall find that jealousy and envy have much influence. Self-love is a predominant feeling in the human breast. It may be manifested in the exertions of an individual to exalt himself, or in causing the downfall of those above him. He, whose feelings are controlled by this passion, cannot look upon the efforts of his inferiors to elevate themselves without jealousy, or upon the noble achievments of his superiors without envy. Every splendid action of the former class especially, sounds in his ear as a reproof to his sluggishness or mental imbecility. Let one such ascend the ladder of popular favor let him deck his brow with the victor's laurel, the ivy or the olive, and a host of antagonists will arise to drag him down to their own level, and to riot over his fall. Some, perhaps, beholding his success, and burning with an ardent desire for distinction,
may follow in his steps, and overtaking him, will hurl him from his seat, to gratify their own inordinate passion for superiority. It is almost impossible to be long beyond the reach of such rivals, and great indeed must that man be who can withstand their determined onset.
To a fondness for change may also be ascribed one cause of this instability. There is a peculiar restlessness among men, which is constantly seeking for gratification in new objects. Any charm, however lovely, soon loses its power. Any object, however beautiful, is soon neglected. Any name, however exalted, becomes by frequent repetition, harsh and dissonant to the ear. The Grecian peasant manifested this spirit when he condemned the virtuous Aristides to banishment, because he was tired and angry with having every body call him the "just." An individual may continue for a considerable time the favorite of the public, by performing a long succession of noble exploits, but when his work is finally done, he is frequently consigned to neglect and oblivion, while 'the giddy world are exalting and adoring some new idol of their worship. At his death, his name may be engraved in the imperishable marble, and over his tomb a splendid monument may be erected to perpetuate his memory. But he is remembered as one that once was. The sleeping dust, the tomb and the monument may be revered, but the man himself is literally passed into the land of forgetfulness. The adoration that is rendered to his remains is almost entirely selfish. Perhaps some misanthrope, tired of the world, may pause at his tomb, but it is only to administer a soporific to his own feelings. Some passing traveler may stop and gaze at the place of his repose, but it is only to admire the splendor of the monument. Some sentimentalist may visit his sepulchre, but it is to please his own fancy, or gratify a poetic imagination. The rising youth may be led to the tomb and pointed to the towering marble, but it is only to instil into his inquiring mind a desire to imitate the actions of the deceased, so as to secure like praise for himself. The sleeping dust is insensible to the selfish adoration of its visitants, and the departed spirit, if permitted to discover the motives of human conduct, would probably be stung with anguish in view of the emptiness of that honor, which through so much anxious labor it had acquired. Another cause for this instability, is found in the want of a harmonious development of greatness in its subject. No man can be equally great on all occasions. Extremely strange, indeed, it would be, if a weakness was never discovered in the popular favorite. The least manifestation of frailty dissipates the fancies of a warm imagination, and reduces its subject to the dimensions of ordinary men. A few slight failures are oftentimes disastrous. What was at first regarded only as a slight mismanagement, is magnified into a crime, which becomes the watchword of action to the enemy. The unthinking multitude swim along upon the current of public opinion. To them a man is great when his fame is loudly proclaimed. But the proclamation of one fault will sometimes convert a multitude of such friends into enemies, and the fickle public may change front, even before their presumptive favorite had become aware of any fault worthy of their disapprobation. His secret adversary, finding his opponent vulnerable, redoubles his activity, while the object of his enmity, like a stone falling from a precipice, sinks with accelerated velocity. At the bottom of the precipice, he discovers, oftentimes, to his sore dismay, that his
present and his future happiness are alike blasted. Prompted by ambition, he had toiled long and severely by day and by night. At times the object of his anxiety seemed almost within his grasp, and his heart was cheered with the loftiest hopes, but, alas! the pleasing vision vanished, when cruel disappointment, with a band of furies in her train, rushed upon him and dragged him down to despair. Ah, foolish man! thou sport of fortune, and of insatiable ambition. Thou hast brought thy soul to the very gates of misery, unattended by the luscious fruits of thy toil. The reward of thy folly thou must receive-"Thou shalt eat of thine own ways and be filled with thine own devices."
Another and a nobler course is commended to the attention of the young. Let them rather seek for that which imparts true worth and dignity to man. Let them seek for knowledge, virtue, holiness, and they will possess imperishable worth. To such it makes but little difference what the giddy world may say. They have within themselves a source of exa happiness which shall bring them true glory beyond the skies. Such lean upon no broken reed. If the acclamations of the multitude follow them, they are calm and humble. But if, on the other hand, their scoffs and sneers, they are equally collected and confident, rejoicing in the assurance that when the revelations of a future world shall be made known, their names will be found emblazoned in light upon the records of eternity. This is Glory! genuine Glory!
BY F. H. STAUFFER.
When our bosoms are rack'd with woe
The hardest trial we can know
Is learning to endure !
To him whose life is ebbing fast,
Set not then his fond heart aching
Rather with that magic power
A nature kind hath given,
COMFORT IN OLD AGE.
Upon my heart, gently, not smiting it,
Upon his harp, to deaden its vibrations.-LONGFELLOW.