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9. Once, at Laleham, when teaching a rather dull boy, he spoke somewhat sharply to him, on which the
pupil looked up in his face, and said, “Why do you • speak so angrily, sir?- indeed, I am doing the best I
can.” Arnold at once acknowledged his error, and expressed his regret for it. Years afterward he used to tell the story to his children, and added, "I never felt so much in my life: that look and that speech I have never forgotten.”
10. One of his principal holds was in his boy-sermons; that is, in sermons to which his young congregation could and did listen, and of which he was the absolute inventor. The secret of that power lay in its intimate connection with the man himself. He spoke with both spiritual and temporal authority, and truths divine seemed mended by the tongue of an expounder whose discourse was a living one,- doctrine in action, —and where precept was enforced by example.
11. His was the exhibition of a simple, earnest man, who practiced what he preached, who probed the depths of life, and expressed strongly and plainly his love of goodness and abhorrence of sin. There was, indeed, a moral supremacy in him; his eyes looked into the heart, and all that was base and mean cowered before him; and, when he preached, a sympathetic thrill ran through his audience.
Honor and wealth, with all his worth and pains !
It seems a story from the world of spirits
Or any merits that which he obtains.
And calm thoughts, equable as infant's breath;
S. T. COLERIDGE. (1770 — 1834.)
1. If we wholly perish with the body, what an imposture is this whole system of laws, manners and usages, on which human society is founded! If we wholly perish with the body, those maxims of charity, patience, justice, honor, gratitude and friendship, which sages have taught and good men have practiced, what are they but empty words, possessing no real and binding efficacy?
2. Why should we heed them, if in this life only wo have hope? Speak not of duty. What can we owe to the dead, to the living, to ourselves, if all are, or will be, nothing? Who shall dictate our duty, if not our own pleasures, – if not our own passions ? Speak not of morality. It is a mere chimera, a bugbear of human invention, if the life of man terminates with the grave.
3. If we must wholly perish, what to us are the sweet ties of kindred? what the tender names of parent, child, sister, brother, husband, wife, or friend? The characters of a dra'ma are not more illusive! We have no ancestors, no descendants; since succession can not be predicated of nothingness. Would we honor, the illustrious dead ? How absurd to honor that which has no existence!
4. Would we take thought for posterity? How frivolous to concern ourselves for those whose end, like our own, must soon be annihilation! Have we made a promise? How can it bind nothing to nothing? Perjury is but a jest. The last injunctions of the dying, - what sanctity have they, more than the last sound of a chord that is snapped, of an instru: ment that is broken?
5. To sum up all: If we must wholly perish, then is obedience to the laws but an insensate servitude; rulers and magistrates are but the phantoms which popular imbecility has raised up; justice is an unwarrantable infringement upon the liberty of men, — an imposition, a usurpation ; the law of marriage is a vain scruple; modesty , a prejudice; honor and probity, such stuff as dreams are made of; and the most heartless cruelties, the blackest crimes, are but the legitimate sports of man's irresponsible nature !
6. Here is the issue to which the vaunted philoso. phy of unbelievers must inevitably lead! Here is that social felicity, that sway of reason, that emancipation from error, of which they eternally prate, as the fruit of their doctrines ! Accept those doctrines, and the whole world falls back into a frightful chaos; and all the relations of life are confounded; and all ideas of vice and virtue are reversed; and the most inviolable laws of society vanish; and all moral discipline is discredited. . 7. Accept those doctrines, and the government of states and nations has no longer any cem'ent to uphold it; and all the harmony of the body politic becomes discord; and the human race is no more than an assemblage of reckless barbarians, shameless, remorseless, brutal, denaturalized, with no other law than force, no other check than passion, no other bond than irreligion, no other God than self. Such would be the world which impiety would make! Such would be this world, were a belief in God and immortality to die out of the human heart !
From the French of MASSILLON. (1717 — 1742.
1. THE Dull Razor. — “Does this razor go easy ?” asked a barber of his customer, who was writhing under a clumsy instrument, the chief recommendation of which was a strong handle. — “Well," replied the poor fellow," that depends upon what you call this oper ation. If you 're skinning me, the razor goes tolerably easy; but if you're shaving me, it goes răther hard.” —“Does n't it take hold ?” asked the barber. — “Yes, it takes hold, but it won't let go,” replied the victim.
2. How TO RUIN YOUR HEALTH. — A humorous writer gives the following rules for ruining health: Stop in bed late. Eat hot suppers. Turn day into night, and night into day. Take no exercise. Always ride when you can walk. Never mind about wet feet. Have half a dozen doctors. Take all the medicine they give you. Try every new quack. If that doesn't kill you, quack yourself.
3. CARRYING A JOKE TOO FAR. — A fellow stole a saw, and on his trial told the judge that he only took it in joke. “How far did you carry it?” inquired the judge. — “Two miles," answered the prisoner.—“Ah! that's carrying a joke too far!” said the judge; and the prisoner was sentenced to hard labor, in the House of Correction, for three months.
4. Too OFFICIOUS. — “Your house is on fire !” exclaimed a stranger, rushing into the parlor of a pompous and formal citizen.— “Well, sir," replied the latter, “to what cause am I indebted for the extraordinary
interest which you seem to take in the affairs of my · house ?"
5. MAKING THE BEST OF THINGS. — “I have told you,” says Southey,“ of the Spaniard who always put on spectacles when about to eat cherries, in order that the fruit might look larger and more tempting. In like manner I make the most of my enjoyments; and though I do not cast my eyes away from my troubles, I pack them in as small a compass as I can for myself, and never let them annoy others.”
6. FATE OF IDLERS. — The man who did not think it was respectable to bring up his children to work