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MAGAZINE

FOR

LITERATURE, PHILOSOPHY, AND RELIGION.

VOLUME III.

BOSTON:
PUBLISHED BY E. P. PEA BODY,

13 WEST STREET.

LONDON:
J. GREEN, 121 NEWGATE STREET.

M DCCC XLIII.

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Introductory Lecture read at the Masonic Temple in Boston, Thursday

Evening, December 2, 1841.

The Times, as we say — or the present aspects of our social state, the Laws, Divinity, Natural Science, Agriculture, Art, Trade, Letters, have their root in an invisible spiritual reality. To appear in these aspects, they must first exist, or have some' necessary foundation. Beside all the small reasons we assign, there is a great reason for the existence of every extant fact; a reason which lies grand and immovable, often unsuspected behind it in silence. The Times are the masquerade of the eternities: trivial to the dull, tokens of noble and majestic agents to the wise ; the receptacle in which the Past leaves its history ; the quarry out of which the genius of to-day is building up the Future. The Times — the nations, manners, institutions, opinions, votes, are to be studied as omens, as sacred leaves, whereon a weighty sense is incribed, if we have the wit and the love to search it out. Nature itself seems to propound to us this topic, and to invite us to explore the meaning of the conspicuous facts of the day. Everything that is popular, it has been said, deserves the attention of the philosopher. And this for the obvious reason, that although it may not be of any worth in itself, yet it characterizes the people.

VOL. III. — NO. I.

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