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thoughts and reasonings, his example must be the life of our actions, his spirit must animate the most ordinary feelings of our hearts. Care too must be taken that no foreign intermixtures intrude into the place which Christ should hold. No human authority or influence should supersede his. If we ever find it difficult to reconcile of his instructions with those of the apostles, the apostles must give way, and Christ must be the interpreter, Christ must be the oracle. If men give out for gospel that which seems to contravene the spirit and tenor of the New Testament, Christ must be consulted first, as the source of all intelligence, our true and living head. Most of all is it our duty to disclaim and avoid ranging ourselves under the banners of human names, and deducing our faith and principles of action from the speculations of this or that eminent individual. One is our master, one is our head, even Christ. There is no other name given among men, whereby they can be saved.--Why will christians forget this plain, simple, fundamental truth, and go about to beg and borrow their religion from human sources, and hang on fallible men for light and salvation, when Christ himself is waiting in their neglected bibles to impart the doctrines of everlasting life ?—Pp. 12, 13.
The second lesson is one of kindness and forbearance toward fellow-believers, as members of the same body; and the sermon closes with the following fine paragraph.
· Then, when we approach the table this day, let us recollect that we belong to the thousands who have gone before us, and the millions who are yet to come after us, who all look back to one head, who is Christ, and forward to one consummation, wbich is eternity -whom one feeling inspires, which is love-whom one principle actuates, which is faith; whom one being adopts, supports, protects, conducts, surrounds, and owns—who is God !Amen!-p. 15.
Our readers will perceive how much reason we have to think favourably of the design, spirit, and execution of this sermon; and to congratulate the friends of religion in Charleston, that they have one among them, who can inculcate so beautiful a doctrine with so beautiful a spirit, and that there is zeal to extend it beyond the hour and place of its delivery.
A Report of the case of the Jeune Eugenie, determined in the
Circuit Court of the United States for the First Circuit, at
If any thing in man's conduct could be dee:ned unnatural or astonishing, the existence of the African slave trade, as carried on by civilized nations since the early part of the sixteenth century, would excite wonder as well as horror and indignation. But those who know any thing of the history of mankind, or whose eyes are open to the scenes daily passing around them, nust have ceased to account any extravagance of feeling or opinion, or any degree of moral depravity a singular phenomenon. At the same time it cannot be denied, that in the mass of society there is a vast preponderance of good over bad dispositions; and that however atrocious and unpardonable may be the actions of some, and however little reliance can be placed upon the principles of the multitude, the greater part of our fellow beings are sensibly alive to the impulse of good feelings.
Of all the enormities which blacken the page of history, the African slave-trade stands pre-eminently the sin of deepest dye. Imagination would toil in vain for a more mortifying and humbling proof of the inconsistency and imbecility of human institutions, or of the degradation to which avarice can reduce our nature, than is found in the toleration of this traffic by nations calling themselves Christian. A traffic, which has been more productive of bloodshed, murder, and crime of every description, than can be found in the accumulated horrors of all previous history.
The retrospect of the last few years, however, affords the most animating views of the inoral capabilities of our race, and of the progress of those precepts and principles of our religion upon which alone the virtue and security of society can permanently rest. And among the triumphs of religion and humanity, the attempted abolition of the slave trade stands first. The change in men's views of this subject would indeed be astonishing, were it not for the fact above alluded to, that buman nature is constituted much more largely of good than of bad feelings. A knowledge of the enormities of this accursed traffic, which had been too long successfully concealed, has at length been diffused throughout the civilized world. The groans of the wretched Africans have startled and aroused the people of England and America, and the impulse of popular feeling and opinion in both countries has become great and irresistible. Similar views are beginning to pervade all Europe; men have begun to reason and to feel upon this subject, and the ultimate victory of humanity is therefore secured. In a few years, the African slave-trade and Cannibalism will stand upon equal pedestals in the exhibition of human depravity.
As this subject is becoming daily of greater domestic and political interest, the following sketch of its history and present situation, may be acceptable to those of our readers who have not time or opportunity for further inquiry. Previous to the discoveries of the coast of Africa by the Portugueze, in the early part of the fifteenth century, the slavery bad ceased throughout Europe. But among the first advantages derived from their acquisitions on the African coast, was the revival of this traffic. 'Thus the most degraded nation of modern Europe is entitled to the disgraceful pre-eminence of having introduced this atrocious commerce ;—and with admirable consistency, she persists in her ignominy, by remaining the only European maritime power, that has not acceded to its abolition.
The first permanent colony settled in America was established by Columbus on the Island of Hispaniola, now more commonly called St. Domingo, in the year 1493; the small one, left by him in consequence of his shipwreck in the preceding year, having been justly destroyed by the natives. And the first slaves in the new world were the captives, taken by the Spaniards in a war commenced by the inhabitants to protect themselves from the rapacity of the colonists. Soon afterwards, taxes to be paid in gold and cotton, were exacted from the unhappy Indians; but as these in a short time exceeded their means of acquisition, they were compelled, in lieu of them, to cultivate certain portions of their native land for the use of these merciless strangers. From this institution eventually proceeded the Repartimientos, or distributions among the colonists of the natives as slaves, by which they were reduced to the most abject and laborious servitude, which soon extinguished the whole race. When the island was first discovered, the number of inhabitants was computed at the lowest estimation to be a million. In fifteen years afterwards there remained only sixty thousand; and notwithstanding the importation of forty thousand of the simple inhabitants of the Lucayos Islands, who were decoyed to Hispaniola under the assurance that it was the paradise of their departed and ors, who were awaiting their arrival, in a little more than twentyfive years from the discovery of the island, the Indians had become extinct.
The exterminating cruelties inflicted upon this inoffensive race excited, as might have been expected, the pity and indignation of those in whose hearts avarice had not extinguished all sense of justice and all feelings of humanity. The Dominican priests, who had been sent over as instructers and missionaries to the Spanish colonies, and who found all efforts to teach or civi. lize the natives utterly hopeless while they were suffering under this oppression, zealously opposed a system so repugnant to every principle of justice and religion. But their attempts to procure an amelioration of the condition of the wretched natives were as unavailing as unceasing. The mines could not be worked nor the plantations cultivated without slaves, and the abrogation of the system was therefore determined to be impracticable. At length the celebrated Las Casas, the principal of the Dominicans and great champion of the Indians, who had long exerted himself with zeal and abilities worthy the cause he had espoused, finding all other expedients hopeless, proposed the substitution of African slaves to be purchased of the Portuguese. Although this proposition was zealously opposed, on the obvious principle, that it was iniquitous to reduce one race of men to slavery for the sake of relieving another; it was finally adopted in the year 1517, and African slaves were soon afterwards imported into Hispaniola. Thus by one of the most notorious of the inconsistences which mark the history of enthusiasm even in the noblest and boliest of causes, was this curse first imposed upon America. The shores of Hispaniola were the first American soil polluted by the footsteps of an African slave, and they were the first to witness his self emancipation; the land which first drank his tears, was the first drenched in the blood of his oppressors; and the mountains which first re-echoed the sound of the lacerating scourge, were the first which reverberated the signal of his triumph. He is now the lord of the soil be ignobly tilled for others, and waves the banner of freedom over the scenes of his former ignominy and suffering. The voice of God speaks loudly in this event,-- let the nations look to it.
The natives of Africa being of a more hardy nature than the Indians, the trade in slaves to the American Colonies soon be. came extremely lucrative, and was undertaken by all the maritime gations of Europe. In a very few years the number exported varied from fifty to an hundred thousand, and in 1791 the British importations alone amounted to 74,000.
The means taken to procure them, and their subsequent treatment, exceed in atrocity all previous conceptions of cruelty, and would have seemed the frenzied imaginations of a maniac slave,
were they not too truly matters of history. Not only were all possible deceptions practised to decoy them on board the slave ships, or within the power of those who were employed to take them, and to surprise any who might bave wandered from their hamlets, and not only were tribes excited to war with each other in order to procure captives; but at night whole villages being surrounded and set on fire, an indiscriminate capture was made of men, women and children as they were escaping from the flames, who were instantly hurried on board the vessel awaiting to receive theni. But who will attempt to describe their sufferings there :-chained two and two by their hands and feet and thus fastened to the deck, with only five feet and six inches in length and sixteen in breadth, whatever might be their size, and with from four to five feet only in height between the platforms : kept weeks and months in this condition under a vertical sun-the imagination can fix no bounds to their misery. Many died of suffocation, and more of the diseases generated by the nosious atmosphere created from the heat and filth to which they were exposed, so that when inspected in the morning the living and the dead were often found chained together. So great was the mortality produced by their sufferings, that one third of those received on board the vessels died before their arrival at their ports of destination.-Well has this trade been denominated one long continuous crime, involving every possible combination of evil, combining the wildest physical suffering with the most atrocious moral depravity."
A moment's reflection upon the agony of the wretched captives terminating only with their lives, upon the inisery of those from whom they are thus for ever hopelessly sundered, and of the cold blooded, atrocious barbarity of those engaged in this traffic, must excite in every heart, not utterly dead to feeling, emotions of which it would be but mockery of language to attempt an expression. The first efforts to abolish this traffic were made in this country. Slavery never existed to any great extent in New England; the principles and habits of her citizens were all calculated to inspire them with a hatred of its existence, and detestation of the traffic. Of the enormities of the trade, indeed, most of them were utterly ignorant; and the state of servitude among them was of a nature so mild, and differing so little from that of common labourers, that it was not calculated to excite much feeling, excepting such as arose from a sense of its injustice. This feeling their history evinces to have been powerful and operative. The citizens of the southern states also were early enlisted in opposition to the traffic, both from feelings of compassion excited by the miseries it inflicted,