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the first. In all the talents which enlarge the human mind, and all the virtues which ennoble the human heart, in the amiableness of private life and the dig nity of a ruler, in dangers hazarded and difficulties overcome, in splendor of destination and the enjoy ment, and proofs, of divine complacency, he is clearly without a rival. Companions, perhaps superiors, he may find in some single walk of greatness; but in the whole progress he is hitherto alone.
For this pre-eminence he was plainly fitted by nature, and education, by the manner of his life, and the field of his employment. Born with a soul superior to his kind, educated in the first school of wisdom, trained to arms, and to policy, in the most improved and powerful court in the world, and nurtured in wisdom still more sublime in the quiet retreats of Midian, he came forth to his great scene of public action, with the most happy preparation both for success and glory. God was about to accomplish a more important revolution than had ever taken place, and had formed and finished the instrument, which so illustrious a design required.
In whatever course of life, in whatever branch of character, we trace this great man, we find almost every thing to approve, and love, and scarcely any thing to lament, or censure. When we see him at the burnng bush, sacrificing his diffidence to his duty, and resolving finally to attempt the first great liberation of mankind; when we accompany him to the presence of Pharoah, and hear him demand the release of the miserable victims of his tyranny; when we behold him laying Egypt waste, and summoning all the great engines of terror and destruction to overcome the obstinacy and wickedness of her monarch; when we follow him to the Red Sea, and behold the waters divide at his command, to open a passage for the millions of Israel; and at the same command return, to deluge the Egyptian host; when we trace him through the wonders of Sinai, and of the wilderness; when we mark his steady faith in God, his undoubting obedience to
every divine command, his unexampled patriotism, immoveable by ingratitude, rebellion, and insult, his cheerful communication of every office of power and profit to others, and his equally cheerful exclusion of his own descendants from all places of distinction ; when we consider his glorious integrity in adhering always to the duties of his office, unseduced by power and splendor, unmoved by national and singular hom age, unawed by faction and opposition, undaunted by danger and difficulty, and unaltered by provocation, obloquy, and distress; when we see him meek beyond example, and patient and persevering through forty years of declining life, in toil, hazard, and trial; when we read in his writings the frank records of his own failings, and those of his family, friends, and nation, and the first efforts of the historian, the poet, the ora tor, and the lawgiver; when we see all the duties of self government, benevolence, and piety, which he taught, exactly displayed in a life approximating to angelic virtue; when we behold him the deliverer of his nation, the restorer of truth, the pillar of righteousness, and the reformer of mankind; his whole character shines with a radiance, like the splendor, which his face derived from the Son of Righteousness, and on which the human eye could not endure to look. He is every where the same glorious person; the man of God; selected from the race of Adam; called up into the mountain that burned with fire; ascending to meet his Creator; embosoming himself in the clouds of Sinai; walking calmly onward through the thunders and lightnings; and serenely advancing to the immediate presence, and converse, of Jehovah. He is the greatest of all prophets; the first type of the Saviour; conducted to Pisgah, unclothed of mortal flesh, and entombed in the dust, by the immediate hand of the Most High.
THE FORCE OF TALENTS.
Talents, wherever they have had a suitable theatre have never failed to emerge from obscurity, and assume their proper rank in the estimation of the world. The celebrated Camden, is said to have been the tenant of a garret. Yet from the darkness, poverty, and ignominy, of this residence, he advanced to distinction and wealth, and graced the first offices and titles of our island. It is impossible to turn over the British Biography, without being struck and charmed by the multitude of correspondent examples; a venerable group of novi homines, as the Romans called them; men who from the lowest depths of obscurity and want, and without even the influence of a patron, have risen to the first honours of their country, and founded their own families anew. In every nation, and in every age, great talents, thrown fairly into the point of public observation, will invariably produce the same ultimate effect. The jealous pride of power may attempt to repress and crush them; the base and malignant rancour of impotent spleen and envy may strive to embarrass and retard their flight: but these efforts, so far from atchieving their ignoble purpose, so far from producing a discernible obliquity in the ascent of genuine and vigorous talents, will serve only to increase their momentum, and mark their transit with an additional stream of glory. When the great earl of Chatham first made his appearance in the House of Commons, and began to astonish and transport the British Parliament, and the British nation, by the boldness, the force and range of his thoughts, and the celestial fire and pathos of his eloquence, it is well known that the Minister, Walpole, and his brother Horace, (from motives very easily understood) exerted all their wit, all their oratory,
all their acquirements of every description, sustained and enforced by the unfeeling "insolence of office," to heave a mountain on his gigantic genius, and hide it from the world-Poor and powerless attempt! The tables were turned, He rose upon them in the might and irresistible energy of his genius, and in spite of all their convolutions, frantic agonies and spasms, he strangled them and their whole faction, with as much ease, as Hercules did the serpent, Python. Who can turn over the debates of the day, and read the account of this conflict between youthful ardor and hoary headed cunning and power, without kindling in the cause of the tyro, and shouting at his victory? That they should have attempted to pass off the grand, yet solid and judicious operations of a mind like his, as being mere theatical start and emotion; the giddy, hair-brained eccentricities of a romantic boy! That they should have had the presumption to suppose themselves capable of chaining down to the floor of the parliament, a genius so etherial, towering and sublime! Why did they not, in the next breath, by way of crowning the climax of vanity, bid the magnificent fire-ball to descend from its exalted and appropriate region, and perform its splendid tour along the surface of the earth?
Talents, which are before the public, have nothing to dread, either from the jealous pride of power, or from the transient misrepresentations of party, spleen or envy. In spite of opposition from any cause, their buoyant spirit will lift them to their proper grade-it would be unjust that it should lift them higher.
It is true, there always are, and always will be, in every society individuals, who will fancy themselves examples of genius overlooked, under-rated, or invidiously oppressed. But the misfortune of such persons is imputable to their vanity, and not to the public opinion, which has weighed and graduated them.
In spite of every thing, the public opinion, will finally do justice to us all. The man who comes fairly
before the world, and who possesses the great and vigorous stamina which entitle him to a nich in the temple of glory, has no reason to dread the ultimate result; however slow his progress may be, he will, in the end, most indubitably receive that distinction. While the rest, "the swallows of science," the butterflies of genius, may flutter for their spring; but will soon pass away and be remembered no more. No enterprising man, therefore, (and least of all the truly great man) has reason to droop or repine at any efforts which he may suppose to be made with the view to depress him; since he may rely on the universal and unchanging truth, that talents, which are before the world, will most inevitably find their proper level; and that is certainly, all that a just man should desire. Let, then, the temper of envy or of malice howl around him. His genius will consecrate him : and any attempt to extinguish that will be as unavailing, as would a human effort" to quench the stars."
EXTRACT FROM PRESIDENT WASHINGTON'S SPEECH TO THE FIRST CONGRESS, APRIL 30Tн, 1789.
With the impressions under which I have, in obediege to the public summons, repaired to the present station, it would be peculiarly improper to omit in this first official act, my fervent supplications to that Almighty Being, who rules over the universe, who presides in the councils of nations, and whose providential aids can supply every human defect, that his benediction may consecrate to the liberties and happiness of the people of the United States, a government instituted by themselves, and may enable every instrument employed in its administration, to execute with success, the functions allotted to his charge. In tendering this homage to the great Au