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"Then the progeny that springs
From the forests of our land,
Shall a wider world command.
Thy posterity shall sway;
None invincible as they.”
Pregnant with celestial fire,
Of his sweet but awful lyre.
Felt them in her bosom glow:
Dying, hurled them at the foe.
Heaven awards the vengeance due;
Shame and ruin wait for you.
207.—THE EXPLOIT OF HECTOR.
HOMER. Such was the poise in which the battle hung Till Jove himself superior fame at length To Priameian Hector gave, who sprang First through the wall. In lofty sounds that reached Their utmost ranks, he called on all his host: "Now press them! now, ye Trojans, steed-renowned, Rush on! break through the Grecian rampart! hurl At once devouring flames into the fleet!" Such was his exhortation. They, his voice All hearing, with close-ordered ranks, direct Bore on the barrier, and up-swarming showed On the high battlement their glittering spears. But Hector seized a stone: of ample base, But tapering to a point; before the gate It stood. No two men, mightiest of a land (Such men as now are mighty), could with ease Have heaved it from the earth up to a wain; He swung it easily alone,-so light The son of Saturn made it in his hand. As in one hand with ease the shepherd bears A ram's fleece home, nor toils beneath the weight,
So Hector, right toward the planks of those
S. T. COLERIDGE.
'Tis not merely
But still the heart doth need a language, still
209.-LET THERE BE LIGHT.
The Greek rhetorician, Longinus, quotes from the Mosaic account of the Creation what he calls the sublimest passage ever uttered: “God said, “Let there be light,' and there was light." From the centre of black immensity effulgence burst forth. Above, beneath, on every side, its radiance streamed out, silent, yet making each spot in the vast concave brighter than the line which the lightning pencils upon the midnight cloud. Darkness filed as the swift beams spread onward and outward, in an unending circumfusion of splendor. Onward and outward still they move to this day, glorifying, through wider and wider regions of space, the infinite Author from whose power and beneficence they sprang. But not only in the beginning, when God created the heavens and the earth, did he say, “Let there be light.” Whenever a human soul is born into the world, its Creator stands over it, and again pronounces the same sublime words, “Let there be light.”
Magnificent, indeed, was the material creation, when, suddenly blazing forth in mid-space, the new-born sun dispelled the darkness of the ancient night. But infinitely more magnificent is it when the human soul rays forth its subtler and swifter beams; when the light of the senses irradiates all outward things, revealing the beauty of their colors, and the exquisite symmetry of their proportions and forms; when the light of reason penetrates to their invisible properties and laws, and displays all those hidden relations that make up all the sciences; when the light of conscience illuminates the moral world, separating truth from error, and virtue from vice. The light of the newly-kindled sun, indeed was glori
It struck upon all the planets, and waked into existence their myriad capacities of life and joy. As it rebounded from them, and showed their vast orbs all wheeling, circle beyond
circle, in their stupendous courses, the sons of God shouted for joy. That light sped onward beyond Sirius, beyond the pole-star, beyond Orion and the Pleiades, and is still spreading onward into the abysses of space. But the light of the human soul flies swifter than the light of the sun, and outshines its meridian blaze. It can embrace not only the sun of our system, but all suns and galaxies of suns: aye! the soul is capable of knowing and of enjoying Him who created the suns themselves; and when these starry lustres that now glorify the firmament shall wax dim and fade away like a wasted taper, the light of the soul shall still remain; nor time, nor cloud, nor any power but its own perversity, shall ever quench its brightness. Again I would say, that whenever a human soul is born into the world, God stands over it, and pronounces the same sublime fiat, “Let there be light!" And may the time soon come, when all human governments shall co-operate with the Divine government in carrying this benediction and baptism into fulfillment !
210.-A GOOD STRONG HEART.
E. H. CHAPIN.
There is one respect in which men differ, and that is in strength and capacity of heart; so that some men are distinguished by the fact that, in all calamities, in all trials, they gather out of their hearts the resources of a new and better life. It is just like a perpetual spring within them. If one form of contemplated good perishes, if one hope drops away, if one resource fails, down they go, down into their hearts again, and call up something else. A great, strong heart is never overcome. It finds its own resources, and falls back into its own possibilities. It is sad to find a man who says, “I have no heart;" to see a forlorn creature who says “I have no power to struggle any more;'' but as long as there is no blight or taint, the power, the possibility of the man is left. There was our gifted Prescott, who died so suddenly the other day. See how that physical calamity which occurred to him in his early years would have affected some men. They would have crouched literally by the wayside of life; and if they had had that man's powers, they would have made their calamity an excrise for a life of idleness and waste. How was it with him? He fell back into his own great and noble heart, and out of it
he brought up new life, which became to him a strength and power, that perhaps he never would have exhibited, had not that misfortune happened to him. But for that, he might have been a scholar, or, much worse, a politician; but the twilight of almost total blindness having fallen on him, he called up those powers, and concentrated them upon the great and noble work of history; and, when building up this historical structure, just as an architect builds up a great cathedral, like that of Cologne, standing forth majestic and glorious, he profited by the very calamity that excluded him from other pursuits and aims. Yea, and with a still nobler spirit, when others lamented his calamity and sought to condole with him in his misfortune, he sang songs in the night, and spoke noble words of cheer and encouragement. No, it was not out of the intellect, but out of a noble and faithful heart, that streamed forth that beautiful life, which made this man one of the glorious stars in the constellation of our literature.
D. C. EDDY.
It is not every one that wears a human form, that can claim to be a man, in the full sense of that term. Many live and move among us, who are destitute of the chief elements of a manly character. They suppose themselves men; indeed, they regard their own course as honorable and worthy of imitation. The gambler has his code of honor; the duelist has his code of honor; the soldier, red in blood, has his code of honor. Napoleon was an honorable man, in his way, and the world ascribed to him many great and noble qualities. He fought well and conquered well. His banner waved in triumph over many a bloody field; carnage and famine and death attended his steps, and like the genius of evil he stalked abroad. doubtless, a splendid general and a brilliant emperor; but the child who wandered over the field, after his most triumphant charge, and wet with water the lips of the dying soldiers there, was far more exalted in the scale of being, than was the plumed and epauletted chieftain.
Nelson was a skillful officer, and died, as the world says, “in all his glory.' His banner was his shroud, the roar of cannon was his dirge, and the shout of victory was his requiem. In the list of naval heroes, his name stands foremost, and they who love the navy have learned to honor him.
But the poor