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theory of penitentiary discipline, Pennsylvania has been the great pioneer. The fame of her penal institutions has crossed the Atlantic. They have engaged the attention of the European legislatures, who are willing to be instructed by our discoveries, in the wide domain of penal philosophy. France, England, Lower Canada, and Prussia, have shown a commendable anxiety to avail themselves of the results of these labors. Their agents have visited these shores, not ministers to our government, but ambassadors to our people. They carry back with them a part of those returns which America, in becoming a nation, had pledged herself to make to the cause of human science.
But the agency of the revolutionary principle is discernible, not merely in laying deep and broad foundations of moral and intellectual superiority, but in imparting activity, enterprise, and energy to the human character. All the departments of life bear witness to its inspiriting effect. It may be seen in the hum of the metropolis, where the instinct of busy life is visible in the stir and bustle of the jostling world. It may be seen on the river, the railway, the canal; the humble village, just rearing its aspiring head into a fancied importance, and in the solitude of rural life. These all pay homage to the principle of the revolution; they all display the effect of unfettered enterprise, and the consciousness of untrammelled freedom. Commerce has spread her sails in the remotest seas, and brought to our doors the luxuries of the most distant and opposite regions. The distant parts of a territory unexampled in extent, have been approximated by the locomotive engine and the steam-boat. Rivers presenting untoward impediments for the one, have been rendered navigable for hundreds of miles; for the other, mountains have been levelled, and valleys bade to rise, as if by the wand of an enchanter. Nature has been penetrated in her wildest recesses, and made to yield her hidden stores. The genius of Fulton could scarcely have foreseen the wonderful effects of his discovery, in ministering to our comforts, in tightening the bonds of human affinity, and knitting together, as one family, the various districts of the globe. It could scarcely have descried in the future, the navigation of the Atlantic and Pacific waters; the Mediterranean, Red Sea, and Indian Ocean; nor the impelling power of steam over the trackless wilds of the Mississippi, and the sandy desert of Suez. Yet of these, some have been realized, and of the others, time will soon witness their accomplishment.
The success of a new order of sentiments in a new hemisphere; the correction of ancient traditional abuses; the rapid strides of science; its universal diffusion by means of the press; and the multiplied facilities of intercommunication; all announce a new era in the history of the world. The influence of these is seen in the altered condition of nearly the whole face of Europe. Calmness and repugnance to change, have been succeeded by a restless and innovating spirit. New ideas of knowledge, improvement, and right, have been awakened. These are teaching to absolutism the proper dignity of human nature; they are teaching the futility of transmitting office, and rank, and privilege, by descent, without relation to merit; they are teaching that the first right of man is to be free, and the first principle of freedom is political equality.
An observer of the events which have occurred on this continent
and in Europe, during the last sixty years, would ascribe to some cause the mighty effects which have been produced. He has seen the downfall of despotism in France, succeeded by a brutality of crime, and a fierceness of cruelty, which fill him with dismay. He has beheld that same France pass through many tribulations to an elective monarchy; and now exempt from domestic disquiet, sitting down in the enjoyment of security and peace. He has seen Greece and Belgium taking their rank as nations, under liberal forms of government. He has beheld the political agitations which have shaken the rest of Europe, in the contests for freedom. He has seen the time-honored institutions of venerable England made obedient to the spirit of the age, and the practice made conformable to the theory of her government. He has beheld, in the American hemisphere, a succession of republics, modelled upon the same principles with our own, rise into existence. He beholds, even now, others attempting to throw off the European yoke, and struggling for independence. Where will the inquirer look for the origin of these stupendous events? Where will he seek the springs of that impulse which has given to the human mind a velocity so increased, a tendency so upward? He will seek it in that potential influence which has opened the rich fountains of personal and civic virtue; which has vivified and expanded the principles of knowledge; which has quickened the spirit, by enlarging the means, of international commerce; in a word, he will seek it in the revolution of 1776. I cannot more beautifully portray the expansive influence which America is destined to exert in the moral regeneration of man, than by concluding in the glowing lines of her own BRYANT:
THE period to which the following poem relates, is the latter part of the eleventh century. The renowned leaders of the first crusade, with an army diminished more than half, in its disastrous march from Byzantium, had obtained possession of Antioch; but, with their usual improvidence, the Croises had wasted in festivity and excess the stores which had fallen into their hands. In this situation, they were besieged by KERBOGA, the Persian vizier, with the combined hosts of the Moslem world. The equipments of this immense army were on a scale of magnificence extraordinary even in the East; its numbers countless; and yet it was discomfited and utterly destroyed by comparatively a handful of half-starved Christians, animated by the religious enthusiasm which formed the grand feature of that chivalrous era, and the effects of which were sometimes almost miraculous.
BEFORE Stern Antioch's stately towers,
Where lodged the Emir and his train,
And sumptuous serai.
Gleamed up that bright array:
Amid his bearded satraps throned,
Voluptuous incense shed.
And 'neath his scowling brow
His foot were planted now.
And, if his spies had spoken sooth,
Men fed upon the reptiles' brood,
Some on the dead brake fast:
And hope was well nigh past,
From what ignoble germs may shoot
And good grew out of ill.
Well might such thoughts seem types of While blindly superstition sealed
Well might he trust, ere long, to see
The beacon of Mount Calvary
Before the crescent bow.
And how the while, in Antioch, fared
As fares the grass a torrid sun
So they in Antioch's halls.
And died a death like Saul's.
What policy proclaimed.
'Tis dawn! Assyria's radiant dawn!
How Eden-like the scene appears,
* DURING the siege, it was pretended that the spot where the lance which pierced the Saviour's side was deposited, had been pointed out by St. Andrew, in a vision. It was of course found, according to the saintly direction.
And far o'er all the listed field,
Shining the groves among.
Why doth yon tower, like eagle's nest,
To treachery a prey.
Yon signal streams aloft, to show
Are mustering for the fray.*
The gathering's o'er; a marshalled band
Sheathed in their shining gear.
O'er light-armed squire, and half-armed
There stalks the priest, with armed heel,
Is borne the sacred spear:
Count Hugh of Vermandois!
Around him stand a princely throng,
The brightest earth e'er saw!
Stars, but alas how dimmed and pale!
The Arab horse break down!
Above, the martyr's crown!'
In more majestic form.
And though that form was wasted now,
The grandeur of the storm!
His broad chest heaved, and blazed his eye,
It caught reflected light,
As thus, while all the host was stilled,
'Christians! your title, the proudest on earth,
'Nobles and knights, the keen swords ye unsheath,
Live ye enwreathed, or, with glory illumed,
Die ye like warriors, spurred, harnessed, and plumed!
'Vassals, as warm runs the blood of the west
'Neath your jerkins of buff, as the Paladin's vest;
Deeds shall this day mete the honors we give!
'Smite, though your arms be less strong than of yore,
"Winds from the East spread our standard abroad,
'City and tomb shall be ours, and the way
WHEN Antioch was sacked by the Crusaders, a few soldiers of the Moslem garrison escaped to the citadel, which held out until the defeat of the beleaguering army under Kerboga. Notice of the attack was given in the manner described.
One mighty voice from all the crowd,
A stream of silk and steel!
Unwinds its skein of gold,
So from those walls the columns sweep,
They gather, fold on fold!
Yon bridge that spans the Orontes o'er, Sole passage, must be forced, before
The hosts in battle close; And there all marshalled, sword in hand, Three thousand mounted Paynims stand, The Croises to oppose: Down the long slope from Antioch's moat, At speed, the Latin lances charge! The post is won! their steel has smote Through tempered helm and silk surcoat, Linked mail and painted targe! The bridge is choked with Moslem dead, The stream beneath, in ripples red,
Breaks on its velvet marge.
"Tis scarce a bow-shot from the stream To where the spears of Islam gleam: On, dreadful as the red siroc, Spurs that dense phalanx to the shock; One moment lasts the fearful race, One moment, and the bow-shot's space Is passed, as 'twere a span! 'God for the Cross!' the Latins cry, 'For Mahomet!' the foe reply; Spears meet, swords flash against the sky, And Europe's peerless chivalry
Are on them, horse and man! There are a thousand lives the less; A thousand chargers, riderless,
Leap from the Persian van!
Have ye not seen the waves divide,
At every blow Earl Godfrey deals,
And where young Tancred's falchion cleaves,
The fall'n lie thick as perished leaves
New-York, August, 1838.
'Tis night! and from 'the heavens aboon,'
Looks calmly down the solemn moon,
Where is the morning's green?
The foeman's spoil I ween!