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New York:


(APR 25 1935.)

LIBRARY Ingrakowopend

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This long range of edifices presents an s images were congregated, and daily wor. imposing aspect to the stranger, as he shipped. King Canute, though a Dane, passes up the Thames, and turns his eyes became a dupe of the priesthood, and in to the spot so long occupied by the old his later days, fixed his residence under Parliament Houses, depicted and noticed their wing, being the first king who ocin the last number of our second volume. cupied this site. The building which he They were accidentally destroyed by fire inhabited was destroyed by fire in the on the 16th of October, 1834. The pre time of Edward the Confessor, who, a sent enlarged edifice soon rose from the bigot of the blindest kind, built another ruins, and affords much more ample and palace near the same spot; and his succonvenient accommodations to the two cessors continued to occupy WestminsHouses of Parliament, the Library, and ter Palace, until the reign of Henry VIII. the various minor purposes connected in 1529, when another fire occurred by with ihem. The origin of the conflagra which it was destroyed, and Whitehall tion is a matter of much uncertainty ; became the royal residence. but it was supposed to be accidental. A The origin of the Parliament of Eng. Ş large quantity of old and useless papers land is lost in the gloom of the Dark had been burnt in the Exchequer, which, Ages, like many other important events, it was supposed, might have been too which would have been preserved if men hastily crowded into the fire-places, and had not been degraded by a system of over-heated some of the chimney-flues. false religion, the fertile source of a The mere destruction of the main build. thousand evils, which nothing but the ing itself might not have been much re truth can reir edy. The people, in all gretted, as it made room for the present ages, felt that desire, so natural to man, superior structure : but numerous valua. to govern themselves, and which ever ble documents were consumed, and the will show itself just in proportion to the admired old Painted Chamber, the tapes liberty allowed it to express itself. It is tries, &c., in the House of Lords, believed that the representatives of the and, above all, the adjoining ancient people fomerly met with the lords in the chapel of St. Stephen, were also ruined. great national ball of legislation ; and This last had long stood as the most per: that the body was first divided in the fect specimen of the highly ornamented year 1377. Conflicts innumerable were Gothic style of architecture in the king waged, from the carliest days of English dom, and was respectable and valuable history, between the people, the nobles also from its historical associations. and the monarchs, often influenced, in.

Westminster Cathedral, which stands stigated or directed, more or less covert. in this vicinity, was the first of the an- { ly by the priesthood, to' whose interiecient edifices which are here clustered rence in public and private affairs, directo together. The superstitions inculcated ly, or indirectly, a great part of the hisby the Romish priesthood have always tory of England was materially affected, filled the heads of all people, foolish in almost all ages, as every intelligent enough to listen to their fictions, with reader must plainly see. The Reforma. ideas of the superior sanctity of the ob tion put an end to the old system : but jects, buildings and places which the pre some of its evil features were retained, tended miraculous power of themselves which have ever since exerted unhappy or others has distinguished. There, as in influences in Parliament and on the namany other places and countrics, conse- {tion. Among these are the church es-> quence was given to the place where the } tablishment and the civil power of eccleground was called holy, and a host of ? s'astics. Under the dispensations of Di- }



vine Providence good often results from } mon forms of what we call “parliamenevil; and the dictatorial spirit of the En tary usage” thus become well known to glish Bishops, proceeding to persecution, multitudes of our people, even in early soon commissioned the Pilgrims to lay life ; and the habit of acting in submisthe foundation of a new republic on Ply. sion to them is a very salutary one, as mouth rock.

the occasional disregard of them which Such reflections as these, and others, we witness most emphatically proves. in an endless train, naturally crowd into Order is indispensable to the decent and the mind of an American, as he stands even the possible transaction of busito contemplate the site of the British ness; and to secure it should be a priParliament.

mary object. The English failed egre. 3 Many writers have laid much stress on giously in two points, the oversight of the antiquity of the English Legislature, which, as observation has strongly imand on some of its forms, which they pressed upon our minds, has had many were inclined to regard with veneration bad effects on both sides of the Atlantic. on that account; while others have not } We allude to the permission of members pretended to trace the origin of the of the House of Commons to sit with House of Commons farther back than the their hats on, and to “viva voce' voting. appointment of Burgesses, or near the į Men will not feel like gentlemen when date of the Norman conquest. To us they act unlike them; and the habit of Americans it can hardly be a point of silence in public assemblies will cherish much importance, to pursue the question a repugnance to noise. The House of far in our enquiries, amidst the degree of 3 Representstives of Massachusetis, conuncertainty which exists. It is of great sisting of above 400 members, is never er importance to us, that the rules and disturbed even when taking a vote in the precedents which have been established most contested cases: for they express in the course of its existence, so far as 3 their opinions by the mere raising of the they are applicable and salutary to our 3 hand. Total silence prevails, and yet legislative assemblies, should be honored the speaker is far better able to decide by careful adherence. We have too of 3 on the vote ihan when it is expressed by ten had reason to lament the disregards the voice.

of order, propriety, and even decency, We could not but reflect, while look: { in some of our state legislatures, and still ing upon that impressive and gratifying

more in Congress, where some men oc scene a few years ago, that we might casionally are sent to take their seats, not have been greatly the gainers, as well properly prepared to appreciate the val as the English, if the latter had originalue and necessity of established rules. ly adopted this most civilized habit. It The long experience of the Parliament would naturally have been copied by our of Great Britain led to the adoption of a stato and general legislatures; and sj. system, which is embraced in all its de lence would have been a characteristic tails in a volume familiarly known as the trait of all our deliberative assemblies. Red Book; and this we have found it not It seems to be an object not unworthy only convenient, but indispensabıle, to of serious attention, that the young at adopt, as the general guide of our forms least should be trained to respectful beof proceeding in deliberative assemblies, haviour, especially in public and on grave even down to the town-meetings and the occasions, that they may be prepared to sessions of literary, scientific, philan avoid such scenes of disorder, which thropic and religious associations.

now form one of the threatening aspects The general principles and most com of our national affairs.

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