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the most perfect models furnished by the elder members of the confederacy, and that they have uniformly maintained law, order, and faith, while they have, with wonderful forecast, been even more munificent than the elder states in laying broad foundations of liberty and virtue. On the whole, we think that we may claim that, under the republican system established here, the people have governed themselves safely and wisely, and have enjoyed a greater amount of prosperity and happiness than, under any form of constitution, was ever before or elsewhere vouchsafed to any portion of mankind.

Nevertheless, this review proves only that the measure of knowledge and virtue we possess is equal to the exigency of the republic under the circumstances in which it was organized. Those circumstances are passing away, and we are entering a career of wealth, power, and expansion. In that career, it is manifest that we shall need higher intellectual attainments and greater virtue as a nation than we have hitherto possessed, or else there is no adaptation of means to ends in the scheme of the Divine government. Nay, we shall need, in this new emergency, intellect and virtue surpassing those of the honored founders of the republic. I am aware that this proposition will seem to you equally unreasonable and irreverent. Nevertheless, you will, on a moment's reflection, admit its truth. Did the invention of the nation stop with the discoveries of Fulton and Franklin? On the contrary, those philosophers, if they could now revisit the earth, would bow to the genius which has perfected the steam engine and the telegraph with a homage as profound as that with which we honor their own great memories. So I think Jefferson, and even Washington, under the same circumstances, instead of accusing us of degeneracy, would be lost in admiration of the extent and perfection to which we have safely carried in practice the theory of self-government which they established amid so much uncertainty, and bequeathed to us with so much distrust. Shall we acquit ourselves of obligation if we rest content with either the achievements, the intelligence, or the virtue of our ancestors? If so, then the prospect of mankind is hopeless indeed, for then it must be true that not only is there an impassable stage of social perfection, but that we have reached it, and that, henceforth, not only we, but all mankind, must recede from it, and civilization must everywhere decline. Such a hypothesis does violence to every power of the


human mind, and every hope of the human heart. Moreover, these energies and aspirations are the forces of a divine nature within us, and to admit that they can be stifled and suppressed, is to contradict the manifest purposes of human existence. Yet it will be quite absurd to claim that we are fulfilling these purposes, if we shall fail to produce hereafter benefactors of our race equal to Fulton, and Franklin, and Adams, and even Washington. Let us hold these honored characters indeed as models, but not of unapproachable perfection. Let us, on the contrary, weigh and fully understand our great responsibilities. It is well that we can rejoice in the renown of a Cooper, an Irving, and a Bancroft; but we have yet to give birth to a Shakspeare, a Milton, and a Bacon. The fame of Patrick Henry and John Adams may suffice for the past; but the world will yet demand of us a Burke and a Demosthenes. We may repose for the present upon the fame of Morse and Fulton and Franklin; but human society is entitled to look to us, ere long, for a Des Cartes and a Newton. If we disappoint these expectations, and acknowledge ourselves unequal to them, then how shall it be made to appear that freedom is better than slavery, and republicanism more conducive to the welfare of mankind than despotism? To cherish aspirations humbler than these, is equally to shrink from our responsibilities and to dishonor the memory of the ancestors we so justly revere.

And now I am sure that your hearts will sink into some depth of despondency when I ask whether American society now exhibits the influences of these higher but necessary aspirations? I think that everywhere there is confessed a decline from the bold and stern virtue which, at some previous time, was inculcated and practised in executive councils and in representative chambers. I think that we all are conscious that recently we have met questions of momentous responsibility, in the organization of governments over our newly acquired territories, and appeals to our sympathy and aid for oppressed nations abroad, in a spirit of timidity and of compromise. I think that we all are conscious of having abandoned something of our high morality, in suffering important posts of public service, at home and abroad, to fall sometimes into the hands of mercenary men, destitute of true republican spirit, and of generous aspirations to promote the welfare of our country and of mankind:

"Souls that no hope of future praise inflame,

Cold and insensible to glorious fame."

I think that we are accustomed to excuse the national demoralization which has produced these results, on the ground that the practice of a sterner virtue might have disturbed the harmony of society, and endangered the safety of that fabric of union on which all our hopes depend. In this, we forget that a nation must always recede if it be not actually advancing; that, as hope is the element of progress, so fear, admitted into public counsels, betrays like treason.

But there is, nevertheless, no sufficient reason for the distrust of the national virtue. Moral forces are, like material forces, subject to conflict and reäction. It is only through successive reäctions that knowledge and virtue advance. The great conservative and restorative forces of society still remain, and are acquiring, all the while, even greater vigor than they have ever heretofore exercised. Whether I am right or not in this opinion, all will agree that an increase of popular intelligence and a renewal of public virtue are necessary. This is saying nothing new, for it is a maxim of political science that all nations must continually advance in knowledge and renew their constitutional virtues, or must perish. I am sure that we shall do this, because I am sure that our great capacity for advancing the welfare of mankind has not yet been exhausted, and that the promises we have given to the cause of humanity will not be suffered to fail by Him who overrules all human events to the promotion of that


But where is the agency that is to work out these so necessary results? Shall we look to the press? Yes, we may hope much from the press, for it is free. It can safely inculcate truth and expose prejudice, error, and injustice. The press, moreover, is strong in its perfect mechanism, and it reaches every mind throughout this vast and ever-widening confederacy. But the press must have editors and authors—men possessing talents, education, and virtue, and so qualified to instruct, enlighten, and guide the people.

Shall we look to the sacred desk? Yes, indeed; for it is of divine institution, and is approved by human experience. The ministers of Christ, inculcating divine morals, under divine authority, with divine sanctions, and sustained and aided by special coöperating influences of the Divine Spirit, are now carrying farther and broadly onward the great work of the renewal of the civilization of the world, and its emancipation from superstition and despotism. But the desk,

also, must have ministers-men possessing talents, education, and virtue, and so qualified to enlighten, instruct, and guide mankind. But however well the press, the desk, and the popular tribune, may be qualified to instruct and elevate the people, their success and consequently their influence must after all depend largely on the measure of intelligence and virtue possessed by the people when sufficiently matured to receive their instructions. Editors, authors, ministers, statesmen, and people, all are qualified for their respective posts of duty in the institutions of popular education, and the standard of these is established by that which is recognized among us by the various names of the academy, the college, and the university. We see, then, that the university holds a chief place among the institutions of the American Republic.

I may not attempt to specify at large what the university ought to teach or how it ought to impart its instructions. That has been confided to abler and more practical hands. But I may venture to insist on the necessity of having the standard of moral duty maintained at its just height by the university. That institution must be rich and full in the knowledge of the sciences which it imparts, but this is not of itself enough. It must imbue the national mind with correct convictions of the greatness and excellence to which it ought to aspire. To do this it must accustom the public mind to look beyond the mere temporary consequences of actions and events to their ultimate influence on the direction of the republic and on the progress of mankind. So it will enable men to decide between pejudice and reason, expediency and duty, the demagogue and the statsman, the bigot and the Christian.

The standard which the university shall establish must co`espond to the principles of eternal truth and equal justice. The unversity must be conservative. It must hold fast every just prinole of moral and political science that the experience of mankind 15 approved, but it must also be bold, remembering that in every nan system there are always political superstitions upholding pl sical slavery in some of its modes, as there are always religious sierstitions upholding intellectual slavery in some of its forms; at all these superstitions stand upon prescriptions, and that they ca only be exploded where opinion is left free, and reason is ever ac›ve and vigorous. But the university must nevertheless practice an' teach

moderation and charity even to error, remembering that involuntary error will necessarily be mingled also even with its own best instructions, that unbridled zeal overreaches and defeats itself, and that he who would conquer in moral discussion, like him who would prevail in athletic games, must be temperate in all things.

Reverend Instructors and Benevolent Founders, this new institution, by reason of its location in the centre of Ohio, itself a central one among these thirty-one united communities, must exert an influence that can scarcely be conceived, now, upon the welfare and fame of our common country. Devote it then, I pray you, to no mere partisan or sectarian objects. Remember that the patriot and the Christian is a partisan or a sectarian, only because the constitution of society allows him no other mode of efficient and beneficent activity. Let "Capitol University" be dedicated not to the interests of the beautiful city which it adorns, nor even to the interests of the great and prosperous state whose patronage I hope it will largely enjoy, nor even to the republic of which I trust it is destined to become a tower of strength and support. On the contrary, if you would make it promote most effectually all these precious interests, dedicate it, I enjoin upon you, as our forefathers dedicated all the institutions which they established, to the cause of Human Nature.

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