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"But ere the Sun, in all his state,
He passed through glory's morning gate,
CXVIII. HYMN BEFORE SUNRISE, IN THE VALLEY OF CHAMOUNI, SWITZERLAND.
[SAMUEL TAYLOR COLERIDGE was born at Ottery St. Mary, in Devonshire, England, October 21, 1772, and died July 25, 1834. He was one of the most remarkable men of his time; and few writers have exerted a wider and deeper intellectual influence. His influence, too, is most felt by minds of the highest class. He was an original and imaginative poet, a profound and suggestive philosophical writer, and a critic of unrivalled excellence. His works are somewhat fragmentary in their character, for he wanted patience in intellectual construction; but they are the fragments of a noble edifice. In conversational eloquence he is said to have excelled all his contemporaries.
Coleridge's life was not in all respects what the admirers of his genius could have wished. His great defect was a want of will. He could see the right, but not always go to it; he could see the wrong, but not always go from it.]
HAST thou a charm to stay the morning-star
2 O dread and silent Mount! I gazed upon thee
3 Yet, like some sweet beguiling melody,
So sweet we know not we are listening to it,—
As in her natural form, swelled vast to heaven.
4 Awake, my soul! not only passive praise
5 Thou first and chief, sole sovereign of the vale!
Or when they climb the sky, or when they sink,
6 And you, ye five wild torrents fiercely glad!
Your strength, your speed, your fury, and your joy,
7 Ye ice-falls! ye that from the mountain's brow
Torrents, methinks, that heard a mighty voice,
Who made you glorious as the gates of heaven
God! sing, ye meadow streams, with gladsome voice!
8 Ye living flowers that skirt the eternal frost !
CXIX. OLD IRONSIDES.
[The following spirited lines were called forth by a rumor that the frigate Constitution was about to be broken up as unfit for service.]
1 Av, tear her tattered ensign down!
And many an eye has danced to see
The meteor of the ocean air
2 Her deck, once red with heroes' blood,
No more shall feel the victor's tread,
Or know the conquered knee;
3 0, better that her shattered hulk
CHARACTER OF LAFAYETTE.
[JOHN QUINCY ADAMS was born in Braintree, Massachusetts, July 11, 1767, and died at Washington, February 23, 1848. He was for half a century in the service of his country, as foreign minister, United States senator, secretary of state, president of the United States, and from 1831 to the time of his death member of the house of representatives. He was a man of indomitable energy, dauntless courage, indefatigable industry, and ardent patriotism. His political opinions made him many enemies, especially in his declining years, but no one ever doubted his honesty and integrity, or failed to respect the spotless purity of his private life. His systematic industry enabled him to accomplish an immense deal of work. He was a man of extensive learning, and familiar with ancient and modern literature. His writings, consisting of speeches, addresses, lectures, and reports, are numerous enough to fill several volumes. He was for a short time professor of rhetoric and oratory in Harvard College, and the lectures he delivered in that capacity were published in 1810, in two octavo volumes. The following extract is from "An Oration on the Life and Character of Lafayette," delivered before the two houses of congress, at Washing ton, December 31, 1834.]
LAFAYETTE discovered no new principle of politics or of morals. He invented nothing in science. He disclosed no new phenomenon in the laws of nature. Born and educated in the highest order of feudal nobility, under the 5 most absolute monarchy of Europe, in possession of an affluent fortune, and master of himself and of all his capabilities at the moment of attaining manhood, the principles of republican justice and of social equality took possession of his heart and mind, as if by inspiration from 10 above.
He devoted himself, his life, his fortune, his hereditary honors, his towering ambition, his splendid hopes, all to the cause of liberty. He went to another hemisphere to defend her. He became one of the most effective cham15 pions of our independence; but that once achieved, he returned to his own country, and thenceforward took no part in the controversies which have divided us.
In the events of our revolution, and in the form of policy which we have adopted for the establishment and 20 perpetuation of our freedom, Lafayette found the most perfect form of government. He wished to add nothing to it. He would gladly have abstracted nothing from it. Instead of an imaginary Utopia, he took a practical existing model, in actual operation here, and never attempted 25 or wished more than to apply it faithfully to his own
It was not given to Moses to enter the promised land; but he saw it from the mount of Pisgah. It was not given to Lafayette to witness the consummation of his wishes in 30 the establishment of a republic, and the extinction of all hereditary rule in France. His principles were in advance of the age and hemisphere in which he lived. The life of the patriarch was not long enough for the development of his whole political system.
This is not the time or the place for a disquisition upon the comparative merits, as a system of government, of a