« PreviousContinue »
which he finds nothing to authorize the view | terest, as may at once be inferred from the fact of the conversion of the Jewish Sabbath into that it has already reached a sixth edition. the Christian Sunday. Antiquity also is Commencing with a narrative of a private against such a view of the question. “ This wrong which he sustained at the hands of the opinion that the Jewish Sabbath has been Romish priesthood, namely, the removal of simply transferred to the Sunday was entirely his wife from his protection, and his being unknown in the first ages of Christianity. denied all intercourse with her – a matter So much so, that it is never even discussed ; which our readers will recollect formed the whilst the opposite opinion is always men- subject of a public trial, and in which Mr. tioned, without any appearance of partiality, Connelly obtained no redress — the writer as that which universally prevailed." İn proceeds to call attention to the various inconfirmation of this he quotes the evidence fringements of the Church of Rome upon the of Justin Martyr, Tertullian, Irenæus, Augus- liberties of Englishmen generally, and warns tine, Jerome, Bede, Thomas Aquinas, and them that what he has himself suffered is only others successively, down to the time of the an evidence of a wide-spread and deeplyGerman Reforination, when he shows that rooted conspiracy to crush, not only our reboth the great Luther and the pious Melanc- ligious freedom, but our civil and political thon were entirely opposed to the doctrine of institutions. Mr. Connelly writes with conthe identity of the Jewish Sabbath and the siderable vigor ; but he is too much of an Christian Sunday. “The opinion that the alarmist. We do not dread all the fearful Sabbath was transferred to the Sunday was consequences of the Emancipation Act, as set first broached in its perfect form, and with all forth by him, and we believe that England is its consequences, in the controversy which still great enough and wise enough to guard was carried on in England between the Epis- against the inachinations of Italian cardinals copalians and Presbyterians. · : The Pres- and Irish priests. With Mr. Connelly's pribyterians maintained that the fourth com- vate griefs we sympathize heartily, and, withmandment was a perpetual one, binding upon out being learned in the law, consider it a all ages, and that the difference between the great hardship that he should not before this Old and New Testament consisted solely in time have obtained redress. this, that at the coinmand of God, given through the Apostles, the first day of the week was substituted for the seventh." The The Working Man's Way in the World ; writer's own opinion may be partly gathered being the Autobiography of a Journeyman Printfrom the following sentences :
* On what er. Reprinted in New York. then is our duty founded, to select Sunday as Except the “ Services and the police force, the day to be observed, since, as we have perhaps few callings exhibit so much intellishown, we cannot dispense with a fixed gence, spirit, and character among the mass of and regularly returning period, exclusively their followers, as printers. And this autobiog, devoted to the worship of God?' We reply, raphy of a journeyman printer displays a good in the first place, on the same feeling which deal of those qualities in himself, or in the perfirst dictated that selection.
sons of some natural mark he encountered durmust have the same force as ever, since Christ ing a busy life employed in London, the country,
and at Paris. For he was engaged as a comis still the same Saviour, and his resurrection, positor in a Parisian office, which printed the the climax of his whole work of redemption, once celebrated piratical editions of English new must have the same importance for us, as for books ; he witnessed the Revolution of 1830 ; those who saw him, when risen, with their and on his return he took part as a volunteer bodily eyes,” &c. In his anxiety to avoid “special” in opposing the Bristol riot. When what he calls “one-sidedness, extreme views, the interest of a work depends upon its facts, the and the splitting of hairs,” it is difficult to guarantee of a name is desirable ; but we see obtain from him, in brief, any decided opin- no reason to doubt the authenticity of this autoion on the subject. From a perusal of the biography. The incidents are probable, in fact, entire work, however, it may be gathered common and the persons such as are met with that he is rather opposed to than favorable every day, besides bearing a strong look of liketowards the introduction into Germany of the the individual and attempts to generalize — as
When the autobiographer passes beyond English doctrine of Sabbath observance. As
in his later sketches, such as the “Reader," and a summary of the argument on both sides, especially the “Overseer,” – he falls into the Dr. Hengstenberg's treatise is highly valu- wordiness and effort of magazine-writing; and able, and as such we coinmend it to the notice in the more particular parts, he sometimes en of our readers.
deavors to make more of a subject than it will
bear. The better portions of the parrative pos The Coming Struggle with Rome, not Relig- sess a naturalness and reality akin to the autojous but Political ; an American's Word of biography of Franklin. The book was originally Warning to the English People, by Pierce published in Taits Magazine, and it merited Connelly, M.A., is a pamphlet of stirring in-1 republication. - Spectator.
From Chambers' Journal. THE LIBERIAN BLACKSMITH.
Was there ever a person like Mrs. Stowe's Uncle Tom in actual existence? What we want to know is, whether an individual born in slavery, and bred under the degrading and stupefying influences of that condition, could possibly be so admirable in character, so meek and yet so firm, so amiable, so conscientious, and so intelligently pious as that wonderful hero of romance is represented to have been? Some eminent critics have boldly asserted that the character is an impossible one. Even Mrs. Stowe herself seems to have been sensible of the objection, and willing to admit its truth; for she declares, or, what amounts to the same thing, makes Arthur St. Clair affirm, that a slave like Uncle Tom is a moral miracle." Such an admission might lead one to believe that the lady's genius is more powerful than her reasoning faculty. It overmasters her; and, like a prophetess of old, she utters higher truths than she can fully comprehend. But the reader shall judge.
Suppose, for a moment, that Uncle Tom had been depicted as not only excellent in every moral quality, but also a man of strong intellect and great learning; suppose that he had been represented as acquiring, by his unaided exertions, not only the common elements of education, but a knowledge of Latin and Greek, and even some acquaintance with Hebrew, and as exciting, by his theological disquisitions, the admiration of a large assembly of clergymen here would have been an intellectual prodigy, combined with the "moral miracle." Mrs. Stowe would evidently not have ventured upon such a delineation; and if she had, the critics would unanimously have scouted it as outraging the utmost bounds of the natural and probable. A writer of fiction must keep within these bounds, and the lady has probably gone as far as the limits of art would allow her. But truth is privileged, and acknowledges no such artistical restrictions. It is quite true, if human testimony is to be believed, that such a moral and intellectual prodigy as has just been described did exist, at no great distance from the scene of Uncle Tom's imaginary adventures and sufferings. The particulars of this remarkable case, as they have come to our knowledge, may be briefly told.
About six years ago a narrative appeared in some American journals which excited a good deal of interest. It was an account of a learned black blacksmith," or, in other words, of a negro slave, who, while working as a mechanic, had managed first to learn to read and write; then to acquire a considerable proficiency in the classical tongues; and, finally, to commence the study of Hebrew. Indeed, as usually happens in such cases, his
attainments were at first exaggerated, and he was represented as having made himself acquainted with no less than seven languages, and as thus being hardly inferior in learning to Elihu Burritt himself. The story in this form attracted the attention of some benevolent persons. Inquiries were made; and the simple truth, divested of all embellishment, was found to be sufficiently extraordinary to awaken a strong feeling in his favor, and to lead to efforts which resulted in his liberation. In the year 1846, a Presbyterian minister, belonging to the synod of Alabama, sent to a religious newspaper of New Orleans a short biography of this remarkable slave. From this and other sources, we learn that Ellis, or, as he subsequently wrote his name, Harrison W. Ellis, was born in Pittsylvania County, in the state of Virginia. In early life he "was removed" from that place to Tennessee; but whether in this removal he accompanied his old master, or was sold to another, is not stated. At the age of nine years he formed the purpose of learning to read, principally in order that he might be able to peruse the Bible. He had observed that ministers, in preaching, always read from the Bible, and spoke of it as being the Word of God; and the expression, so customary as to pass without notice from ordinary hearers, made a strong impression upon his mind. It would be interesting to learn the exact methods by which he succeeded in accomplishing his purpose; but all his biographer tells us is, that in despite of numerous obstacles, such as would have deterred almost any one else, he succeeded in learning to read, and afterwards to write. When he was twenty-five years old another removal took place. This time he was transferred to the state of Alabama. He was still a slave, laboring at the trade of a blacksmith, of course for his master's benefit. A thirst for knowledge had been awakened in his mind; and after reading a good many books, principally on religious subjects, he was led to undertake the study of the Latin language. He had no regular instruction, but received, it is stated, "some little assistance from one person and another, as a casual opportunity afforded it."
This statement, it may be observed, docs. not altogether harmonize with the commonly received opinion, that the slaves in America are purposely kept in gross ignorance, and that to teach one to read is treated as a criminal offence. The fact is, that such prohibitory and penal laws really exist, and that a school for the instruction of slaves would not be tolerated; but the efforts of individual slaves to acquire instruction, either from one another or from good-natured whites, are rarely if ever interfered with. The difficulties which opposed Ellis' pursuit of knowledge
do not seem to have been greater than a poor what constitutes a call to the ministry-for laboring man would have had to encounter in sound, consistent, scriptural views of the leadmost parts of Europe during the last century. ing doctrines of the Gospel, few candidates What excites our surprise in the case of Ellis, for the office have been known to equal him. 1s not the extent of his acquirements, or the The effect of his statements was greatly inmagnitude of the obstacles which he had to creased by the fact, that he seemed to be overcome, but that a negro, and a slave, presenting rather the results of his own reshould thus devote himself earnestly to intel-flections than what he had learned from the lectual pursuits. The negro race is regarded investigations of others. On many points, by some as naturally deficient in mental ca- there was a striking originality in his mode pacity, and a slave has apparently no motive of exhibiting his sentiments. He also read a for attempting to improve his mind. It does sermon of his own composition, of which not appear that Ellis commenced his studies some of the members thought so highly, that with any expectation that they would procure they proposed that the presbytery should him his freedom, or in any way ameliorate order its publication. It certainly looked and his circumstances. He studied, partly that sounded very strange — it was almost incredhe might better comprehend his Bible, and ible - to see and hear one who had been all partly for the mere love of learning. Having his life a slave, with none but the ordinary acquired some knowledge of Latin, he after- privileges of a slave, reading a production so wards undertook the study of Greek, and sub- correct in language, so forcible in style, so sequently of Hebrew. In the latter, however, logical in argument, and abounding in quotahe made very little progress, owing to the tions from the Bible so intelligently and perwant of books-a difficulty, indeed, which tinently applied." So well satisfied was the had retarded his progress throughout his presbytery of his fitness for the office, that arstudies. It cannot be said," observes the rangements were immediately made to ordain clergyman who wrote of him in 1846, "that him as a missionary during the next session he is a finished scholar in either the Latin or of the synod. Greek languages. He has, however, acquired Ellis was at that time between thirty and such a knowledge of both, as to be able, with- forty years of age. He is described as of out any assistance, to prosecute his studies in pure negro parentage, and quite black; his them to any length he may wish. His ac-grandfather, indeed, was a native of Africa. quaintance with his own tongue is such as to His wife was about the same age, and could enable him to speak and write it with as read. They had two children, a son and much propriety as is common among educated daughter. The former, a sprightly lad, sevenmen. While he has read and studied some teen years old, could not only read and write, authors on natural science, moral philosophy, but had made some progress in the study of and the like, his reading has been confined arithmetic, geography, and other branches of for the most part to religious books. Dwight, school learning. The daughter, then eleven Dick, and Boston, are the theological writers years of age, had just commenced learning to with whom he is most familiar." read. It must be borne in mind that the only opportunities which the children could have had for receiving instruction, were such as occurred in the casual intervals of their own and their father's labor.
In what way the abilities and acquirements of this remarkable slave first became known does not appear. It may be presumed, however, that some Presbyterian minister was induced to take an interest in him, and to bring his case under the notice of the ruling bodies of that church, as it appears that in the year already mentioned the synods of Alabama and Mississippi combined to purchase his freedom and that of his family, with the view of sending them to Africa under the care of the American Board of Missions. It was intended that Ellis should be ordained as physician, then residing in Liberia as the a missionary, and with this view he was in-agent of the United States government, gives troduced at a meeting of the presbytery of an account of the arrival of these emigrants, Tuscaloosa as a candidate for clerical orders. and thus notices the one in whom we are The impression he made is thus recorded by chiefly interested: "I am pleased with the the writer who has been already quoted, and manners and character of Mr. Ellis, the who then apparently saw him for the first learned black blacksmith,' who came out in time I believe I utter the sentiments the schooner, and who, with his wife and two of the whole presbytery, and of the large children, was liberated from slavery by the assembly present at his examination, when I Presbyterian synods of Alabama and Mississay, that for precision on the details of relig-sippi, at an expense of 2500 dollars. Alious experience for sober, rational views of though the accounts which have been pub-,
It appears that the benevolent intentions of the two synods were promptly carried into effect. In looking through a series of the publications of the American Colonization Society, we are enabled to trace the results. In March, 1847, a schooner arrived at Liberia from New Orleans with a party of emigrants for the colony. A letter from an American
lished respecting his proficiency as a scholar,
by which we shall be able, after a while, to
There is another passage in the letter which deserves to be quoted, as it strikingly evinces the truth of Mrs. Stowe's representation of character. Uncle Tom's meek endurance of all the wrongs of slavery, his refusal to make use of his "pass" for the purpose of escaping, and the excuses which he finds for his master's hard treatment of him, have been censured by critics as indicating a state of feeling altogether unnatural and improbable in a slave. Now, our learned blacksmith had been a slave till he was past thirty years of age; he had apparently been twice sld he had certainly had to give nearly all his earnings to his master, and to submit entirely to his master's will; yet he "strove," as he himself said, " to make himself agreeable and happy" in this condition, and he counselled all his brethren to submission.
In the African Repository for 1848, there appears a brief letter from Mr. Ellis himself, addressed to one of his clerical friends in Alabama. He was then in excellent spirits, well pleased with the colony, and content with his own prospects. A few months after his arrival in Liberia, the pulpit of one of the Presbyterian churches in Monrovia became vacant, and Mr. Ellis was installed pastor of the church. Five members, he writes, have since been added to the church, one of whom was his own son. A year later, we find, by a paragraph in the same publication, that, besides performing the duties of his pastoral charge, Mr. Ellis had commenced his missionary labors among the natives. "He is studying," we are here told, "the language of two wild tribes, in order to be able to preach to them in their own tongue. He says, that the Mandingoes claim him for their countryman, because his grandfather was born in Africa. This tribe are Mohammedans; and some of their priests, he says, are intelligent, being capable of reading Hebrew when written in the Arabic character." Two years later, there appears a somewhat long letter from Mr. Ellis, giving some interesting information concerning Liberia, in answer to a letter of inquiry from a gentleman in Alabama, and at the same time affording us a good insight into the character of the writer, who certainly bears a strong moral resemblance to Uncle Tom. For instance, supposing the latter to have obtained an education, and afterwards to have settled in Liberia, would he have answered an inquiry about "the general capacity of Liberian children,' in terms very different from those of the following intelli- prenticeship. The self-taught man, with his gent and quaintly-expressed reply? "Theinind full of scientific truths and classical children of Liberia are exactly like the white erudition, finds himself ignorant of numerchildren in America; and as this part of our ous important methods and essential decommunity have the best opportunity to equal tails which he could have acquired in any the corresponding part in America, their well-conducted village-school. Hence we are equality can be better seen. And as remark- not surprised to learn, from a recent report able as this branch of society is [that is, on the state of education in Liberia, that the white children in America], old persons high school had been less successful than its [slaves] had not the opportunity of seeing patrons expected. "The uncommon talents nuch of it where we came from, so that many and industry of its principal, the Rev. Mr. think our children have more penetrating Ellis, manifested in acquiring a knowledge of minds than those of America. This sup- the Latin, Greek, and Hebrew languages position arose out of the above-mentioned while a slave,” adds this report, “do not adecircumstance; but it is not well-founded. quately supply the place of that thorough and The fact is, if there be any difference, it is in careful training in the rudiments, which this perhaps the children in Liberia learn every teacher needs, in order to teach others as fast, if not faster, for the first few years; to the best advantage.' Under these circumbut it may be that the young Americans con- stances, the proper course was taken; a new tinue their mental improvement the longest. principal a graduate of an American theo I think though there may be circumstances logical seminary was appointed to the
At this time, Mr. Ellis had accepted a new responsibility, probably more in compliance with the wishes of others, than in accordance with his own views. A high school, supported by the Presbyterian Board of Missions in New York, had been established at Monrovia, and Mr. Ellis was appointed the master of it. As might have been expected, the arrangement proved to be an injudicious one. Experience has shown that a person entirely self-taught, however great his abilities and his learning, is rarely if ever qualified for the office of a teacher. The art of instruction, like other arts, must be acquired by an ap
school, and Mr. Ellis was left free to pursue the pastoral and missionary labors for which he was best qualified.
Such is the sum of our information concerning this learned, sensible, and pious negro slave. The story is a suggestive one in various ways, and might give occasion for many reflections on slavery and its effects on African civilization, distinctions of race, and so forth. We choose, however, to leave it simply as a pièce justificative—as a French historian would say - of the now worldfamous American romance; merely observing, that Mrs. Stowe's fiction is strange, the plain truth maintains its superiority, as usual, by being stranger still.
that this monstrous fragment must have belonged to a bird! to one at least as large as an ostrich, but of a totally different species; and consequently, one never before heard of, as an ostrich was by far the biggest bird known From the difference in the strength of the bone, the ostrich being unable to fly, so must have been unable this unknown bird; and so our anatomist came to the conclusion, that this old, New Zealand, of some huge bird, at least as shapeless bone indicated the former existence, in great as an ostrich, but of a far heavier and more sluggish kind. Professor Owen was confident of the validity of his conclusions, but could commuricate that confidence to no one else; and notwithstanding attempts to dissuade him from committing his views to the public, he printed his deductions in the Transactions of the Zoological Society for the year 1839, where fortunately they remain on record as conclusive evidence of the fact of his having then made this guess, so to speak, in the dark. He caused the bone, however, to be engraved; and having sent one hundred copies of the engraving to New Zealand, in the hopes of their being distributed, and for three years—namely, till the year 1848. leading to interesting results, he patiently waited when he received intelligence from Dr. Buckland, at Oxford, that a great box, just arrived from The incident which I am about to mention, New Zealand, consigned to himself, was on its exhibits the result of an immense induction of way, unopened, to Professor Owen; who found particulars in this noble science, and bears no it filled with bones, palpably of a bird, one of fint analogy to the magnificent astronomical which was three feet in length, and much more calculation, or prediction, whichever one may than double the size of any bone in the ostrich ! call it, presently to be laid before you. Let it be And out of the contents of this box the professor premised, that Cuvier, the late illustrious French was positively enabled to articulate almost the physiologist and comparative anatomist, had entire skeleton of a huge wingless bird, between said, that in order to deduce from a single frag-ten and eleven feet in height, its bony structure ment of its structure, the entire animal, it was in strict conformity with the fragment in quesnecessary to have a tooth, or an entire articu- tion; and that skeleton may be at any time seen lated extremity. In his time, the comparison at the Museum of the College of Surgeons, towwas limited to the external configuration of bone. ering over, and nearly twice the height of the The study of the internal structure had not pro- skeleton of an ostrich; and at its feet is lying ceeded so far. the old bone, from which alone consummate anatomical science had deduced such an astounding reality; the existence of an enormous extinct creature of the bird kind, in an island where previously no bird had been known to exist larger than a pheasant or a common fowl!
A WONDERFUL BONE.
In a small work on the Intellectual and Moral Development of the Present Age, by Mr. Samuel Warren, Recorder of Hull (Blackwood & Sons), the author touches on the subject of comparative anatomy, and the pitch to which a study of it has been carried in this country We gladly make room for the following pas
In the year 1829, Professor Owen was sitting alone in his study when a shabbily-dressed man made his appearance, announcing that he had got a great curiosity which he had brought from New Zealand, and wished to dispose of it to him. Any one in London can now see the article in question, for it is deposited in the. Museum of the College of Surgeons in Lincoln's Inn Fields. It has the appearance of an old marrow-bone, about six inches in length, and rather more than two inches in thickness, with both extremities broken off; and Professor Owen considered, that to whatever animal it might have belonged, the fragment must have lain in the earth for centuries. At first, he considered this same marrow-bone to have belonged to an at all events, to a quadruped; for the wall or rim of the bone was six times as thick as the bone of any bird, even the ostrich. He compared it with the bones in the skeleton of an ox, a horse, a camel, a tapir-and every quadruped apparently possessing a bone of that size and configuration; but it corresponded with none. On this, he very narrowly examined the surface of the bony rim, and at length became satisfied
Lectures on the Results of the Great Exhibition. 2d series. Bogue.
This volume contains the lectures of Wilson on Agricultural Products, Macadam on Flax, Tennant on Gems, Bazley on Cotton, Blackwell on Iron, Shaw on Glass, Wyatt on Decorative Art, Owen Jones on the Employment of Color, Ansted on the non-metallic Mineral Manufactures, Arnoux on Porcelain and Pottery, and on the General Results of the Exhibition, to which these lectures are an appropriate close. Every visitor should read them, for thus the remembrance of what was there beheld will be revived, and turned to profitable account in the knowledge of the meaning of a great deal that was unintelligible to the uninitiated. We do not know two more instructive volumes than are these collected lectures. - - Critic.