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however measured, and however prudently conducted, which nevertheless, proceeds on the principles of unhesitatingly denouncing the slavery that now exists in our colonies as a crime, and of anxiously labouring to cleanse our beloved country from its guilt.
But let us entreat these men, to whose solid and preeminent worth we are no strangers; whose cause we have not been slow to advocate when the tongue of slander has preferred against them similar charges of enthusiasm and excess; whom we revere as the messengers of the churches and the glory of Christ let us solemnly entreat and adjure them, in the name of Christ, to lay this matter to heart, and to see to it, that they be found faithful witnesses for God and his truth, and for those suffering multitudes for whom their Saviour bled and died, in the day when every refuge of lies shall be swept away;-and when it will form no palliation of the guilt of having trafficked "in slaves and souls of men," or of having suffered others to dream that they might do so with impunity, that they have subscribed to a Bible Society, or have talked religiously, or have even preached evangelically.
But all this will by some be met with the stale argument, that the evils of the system are exaggerated by men of sanguine minds; and that, on the whole, the slaves are well off and kindly treated: and some very respectable name, lady or gentlemen, is then quoted as having said so. This has been the course pursued for forty years. The state of the slaves has always been a state of happiness, and there never has been any present tense for cruelty.
Now what would the very men of whom we are speaking say, in reply to such an argument, if it were advanced in confutation, for example, of the doctrine of the corruption of human nature? If a lady or gentleman, however amiable or
respectable, were to tell them, " I' assure you my heart is a very good heart: my children are the sweetest creatures in the world, as innocent as the dove, and full of the best affections; my friends are all excellent religious people, so pious, and so charitable; I cannot discover in my happy circle any of this depravity you speak of;"would they pay much attention to such a plea?
And yet in the case of slavery, this very course of argument, absurd and ridiculous as it is, is that which they will both tolerate in others, and even themselves sometimes condescend to employ. But what are ten thousand such assertions in the face of undeniable principles and incontestible facts? They are of just as little value, as the ten thousand testimonies which are borne every day to the purity and uprightness of human nature. Let us consider one or two of these principles and facts.
Even the children of Israel multiplied in Egypt. They grew, from a single family-from about seventy. persons, to 600,000 men, besides women and children. To the British West Indies alone, (we exclude our other slave colonies,) there have been carried from Africa, not fewer, on the most moderate calculation, than two millions of human beings. These have not only not increased, but they have diminished to little more than a third of that number. Even under the harsh laws of the United States, the slaves, because they are better fed, and more moderately worked, increase rapidly; whereas in our colonies, with all their boast, (alas, vain boast!) of lenity and improvement,-in colonies where West Indians admit that food is procurable in abundance and with little effort, and where they assert though most falsely, that the slaves are well fed and moderately worked; hundreds of thousands of lives have been wasted and worn down by bitter bondage, and they are still, even now, wasting rapidly,
while the free people, Black and Coloured, on every side of them, are increasing. Can any man believe, that the tales of the happiness of our slaves, under such appalling circumstances, are not as absurd a fable as our lady's or gentleman's self-complacent report of the purity of human nature; since these assertions, in the former as in the latter case, are opposed to all sound general principles, and to all duly ascertained fact and experience? When was it ever known, since the world began, that the human race, in a congenial climate, with abundant means of subsistence, and not oppressed with excessive labour, has failed to increase?
Again; no one who acknowledges the fallen state of men by nature, and their proneness, when unrenewed by Divine grace, to the indulgence of their worst passions, will deny that to entrust such with arbitrary power is to insure their abuse of it. Now, that in our slave colonies the planters are invested with arbitrary power over their slaves, will hardly be denied. Even by the latest improvement of the slave code of Jamaica, passed at the close of the last year, every owner or manager of slaves in that island may still inflict, on the bared bodies of every man, woman, or child under his charge, thirty-nine lashes of the cart-whip, without be ing required by the law to assign a single reason for the infliction: and should he exceed that limit to almost any extent, short of actual murder, what chance can there be of effectually restraining or punishing the act, while the state of the law of evidence secures his impunity? We do not assert that this power is always in action, but it may be always in action. There is no check on individual discretion.-Now what is the general character of the men to whom this enormous power, this tremendous discretion, is committed? Are they men who, it might be hoped, would feel the constraining influence of those Christian principles, by which alone (there being
no law thus far to restrain them) the evil tendencies of human nature can be effectually counteracted? So far is this from being the case, that, even if we derive our estimate of their character from West-India testimony alone, we shall be forced to admit that they have not the slighest claim to our confidence, no, not even to our charitable hope, on any such ground. Bryan Edwards, Pinckard, Williamson, Collins, Stewart, Bickell, De la Beche, Cooper, all concur with one voice in representing them as open contemners of the Sabbath, as regardless of the ordinances of religious worship, and as living in the open, avowed, and unrestrained indulgence of the lowest sensual appetites. They might have added, that even their ordinary conversation breathes profaneness and pollution.
And yet it is of such men that persons professing the faith, and receiving as true the doctrines of the Gospel, can believe it possible, that in their awful relations with the miserable slaves who are subjected to their authority, (most of them too being the mere hirelings of absentees, and having no interest that can be alleged in the happiness of the slave), they are meek, humane, forbearing, and compassionate. If this were possible, it might then be true also that all we have been taught of the corruption of human nature, of the power of temptation, and of the necessity of Christian principles to restrain the bad passions of men, is no better than a cunningly devised fable.
We could greatly enlarge on this view of the subject; but we forbear for the present, intending shortly to resume the consideration of it. In the mean time, we would leave what we have ventured to urge to the candid meditation of those who have called it forth, with an earnest entreaty that they may not be prevented by the apparent harshness of the remonstance, from giving it its due weight; and with an earnest prayer that they may be enabled to think and to act upon it, as they
shall wish they had done when they come to stand before HIM, who will honour and reward the kindly feelings exercised, for HIS sake, to the meanest and most abject of his creatures, as if they had been exercised towards HIMself.
If any, on reading these pages shall wish to satisfy themselves more fully on this whole subject, we beg them to turn to our various articles on slavery, which they will find recorded in our different volumes from the commencement of our labours, and especially to the following recent insertions; namely, vol. for 1824, p. 290, p. 352, and p. 620; vol. for 1825, p. 373; and vol. for 1826, pp. 1, 105, 405, and 677.
We would beg also again to recommend to them, though they are works of fiction, two 12mo publications
which have recently appeared; namely, "Outalissi, published by Hatchard, and "The System," published by Westley, as well as a little tract, entitled "An Evening at Home," proceeding from the Birmingham press. Though these are works of fiction, they nevertheless exhibit a tolerably correct view of the inveterate, and we may say inherent, evils of slavery, the first by a gentleman of piety and intelligence, now holding a high official situation, which has given him an opportunity of seeing with his own eyes the abominations he has denounced; and the other two the productions of ladies, who, though they may not have seen, have yet justly appreciated the real nature, and the hideous effects, of those abominations.
LITERARY AND PHILOSOPHICAL INTELLIGENCE,
GREAT BRITAIN. PREPARING for publication:-A new quarterly publication, price 7s. 6d. to be entitled, Museum Theologicum, or General Collection of Theological Literature; containing a Series of critical, dogmatical, and exegetical Treatises on Divinity;-The First Number of a monthly Periodical, under the title of the Protestant Guardian;-Memoirs and Remains of Mr. Urquhart, of the University of St. Andrews; by the Rev. W. Orme;-The Theological Encyclopædia, embracing every topic connected with Biblical Criticism and Theology.
In the press-Part I., a Natural History of the Bible; or, a descriptive Account of the Zoology, Botany, and Mineralogy of the Holy Scriptures; by W. Carpenter;-A Treatise on Writing and Speaking the Latin Language; by the Rev. G. Puttman;-True Charity; a Tale of the Year 1800, to be embellished with a highly finished copper-plate engraving; The Sea-side; a series of short Essays and Poems, suggested by a temporary residence at a watering place; by the Rev. John East;-Sermons, chiefly practical; by the Rev. Edward Bather.
Cambridge.-The Norrisian prize on "The Mosaic Dispensation not intended to be perpetual," was adjudged to an exercise without a name.
The Rev. Archdeacon Bonner has placed a simple monument over the poet Bloomfield's grave, in Campton churchyard, Bedfordshire, with the following inscription :
"Here lie the remains of Robert Bloomfield: he was born at Honnington, in Suffolk, December 3d, 1761, and died at Shefford, Aug. 19, 1823, "Let his wild native wood-notes tell the rest."
St. David's College was opened on the first of March; but in consequence of the absence of the bishop, the solemnities are postponed till the summer. Forty students sat down to dinner in the college hall, after having been examined by the Principal and Professor.
At the celebration of St. David's Day at Brecon, the Rev. T. Price stated, that two or three years ago he had the honour of setting on foot a collection, for the purpose of translating the Scriptures into the Armorican language. At that time there were many who doubted the practicability of the object and asked where a translator
could be found? But while such persons were doubting and hesitating, the work was commenced and actually accomplished; and in the course of the last month the translation of the New Testament was concluded in the language of Armorica, and was in progress through the press. The museum of the Zoological Society of London is now open to the inspection of the members and their friends. The society's establishment in the Regent's Park is also in considerable forwardness. The gardens, laid out in promenades and shrubberies, with aviaries, and enclosures for various animals, and ponds for fish and wild fowl, are expected to be opened in the ensuing summer.
A young woman aged nineteen was lately committed to Southwell House of Correction, for three months, for taking a nest of partridge eggs, which she alleged she met with while weeding, "not knowing what sort of eggs they were." After one month's confinement, the young woman has found friends, and has been liberated on paying 12s. costs, for fees: but can any person read of such a commitment, and not acknowledge that it is quite time to reform our present absurd and tyrannical system of game laws?
Our readers will remember the affecting narrative of the loss by fire of the Kent East Indiaman, and the support and consolation which true religion afforded to some of the sufferers on that melancholy occasion, as exhibited in Major M'Gregor's deeply interesting and Christian recital. This statement is affectingly corroborated by the following circumstance :-"Abottle," says a Barbadoes Journal, "was picked up on the 30th September, at a bathing place to windward of this island, by a gentleman, who, on breaking it, found the following account of the fate of the ship Kent, contained in a folded paper, written with pencil, scareily legible: The ship Kent, Indiaman, is on fire; Elizabeth, Joanna, and myself, commit our spirits into the hands of our blessed Redeemer: his grace enables us to be quite composed on the awful prospect of entering into eternity. J. W. R. M'Gregor (in a cypher). 15th March, 1825. Bay of Biscay.' On the back is endorsed,John M'Gregor, Esq. Coml. Bank, Edinburgh.'
A society has been formed for the Diffusion of Useful Knowledge, chiefly of a scientific kind, by the periodical publication of Treatises, under the direction of a committee. As numerous societies already exist for the dissemination of Religious Instruction, no treatise will contain any
CHRIST. OBSERV. No. 304.
matter of controversial divinity, or interfere with the principles of religion.
A work, just published in two volumes, entitled Scriptural Geology, or Geological Phenomena consistent only with the literal Interpretation of the sacred Scriptures, upon the subjects of the Creation and Deluge, in answer to Cuvier's Essay on the Theory of the Earth, and Professor Buckland's Theory of the Caves,➡urdertakes to demonstrate, both upon scriptural and physical principles, that there is not a fossil bone or a fossil shell in existence that can be proved to be more ancient than the Noahic Deluge.
It is in contemplation to form a school, attached to the Serampore College, for the deaf and dumb. The children of natives will be instructed gratuitously, if their friends wish it, and taught to read, write, and understand language, either English or Bengalee. CEYLON.
At a meeting of gentlemen of Colombo, it was resolved to erect a mural tablet to the memory of Bishop Heber. At another meeting of the subscribers for the support and education of Cingalese youths at Bishop's College, Calcutta, it was resolved, that the "Colombo Exhibition" shall henceforth be called "Bishop Heber's Exhibition."
In the account, lately published, of the voyage of Captain Lord Byron, to the Sandwich Islands; after a statement that the greater part of the people have already professed, or will soon profess, the Chris tian religion, the following incident is recorded:-" Kapiolani, a female chief, of the highest rank, had recently embraced Christianity; and, desirous of propagating it, and of undeceiving the natives as to their false gods, she resolved to climb the mountain (a volcanic mountain, with a burning crater of prodigious extent), descend into the crater, and by thus braving the volcanic deities in their very homes, (the prevailing belief was, that the gods of the islands resided in these fires,) convince the inhabitants of the islands that God is God alone, and that the false subordinate deities existed only in the fancies of their weak adorers. Thus determined, and accompanied by a missionary, she, with part of her family and a number of followers, ascended Peli (the mountain): at the edge of the first precipice that bounds the sunken plain, many of her followers and companions lost courage, and turned back; at the second the rest
earnestly entreated her to desist from her dangerous enterprise, and forbear to tempt the powerful gods of the fires. But she proceeded, and on the very verge of the crater caused the hut we were now sheltered in to be constructed for herself and people. Here she was assailed anew by their entreaties to return home, and their assurances, that if she persisted in violating the houses of the goddess, she would draw down on herself and those with her, certain destruction! I will descend into the crater,' said she, and if I do not return safe, then continue to worship Peli; but if I come back unhurt, you must learn to adore the God who created Peli.' She accordingly went down the steep and difficult side of the crater, accompanied by a missionary, and by some whom love or duty induced to follow her. Arrived at the bottom, she pushed a stick into the liquid lava, and stirred the ashes of the burning lake. The
charm of superstition was at that moment broken. Those who had expected to see the goddess armed with flame and sulphureous smoke, burst forth and destroy the daring heroine, who thus braved her in her very sanctuary, were awe-struck when they saw the fire remain innocuous, and the flames roll harmless, as though none were present. They acknowledged the greatness of the God of Kapiolani; and from that time few indeed have been the offerings, and little the reverence, offered to the fires of Peli."
NEW SOUTH WALES.
Two gentlemen are about to set out from Sydney, on a scientific expedition, to measure one or more degrees of the meridian in the latitude of Liverpool Plains. There have not been as yet made public any observations of this nature, in a higher southern latitude than from 88 degrees.
LIST OF NEW PUBLICATIONS.
Sermons preached at Christ Church, Bath, before the National Schools. By the Rev. F. Kilvert. 5s. 6d.
Thoughts on Propagating Christianity more effectually among the Heathen. By the Rev. J. Marshman, of Serampore.
The Glory of the Church in its Extension to Heathen Lands; a Sermon preached at Madras, for the Society for the Propagation of the Gospel. By the Rev. T. Robinson.
A Sermon preached before the Society for the Propagation of the Gospel, at Bow Church. By the Bishop of Chester.
The Apocalypse of St. John, or Pro phecy of the Church of Rome, the Inquisition, the great Revolution, the Univer sal War, and the final Triumph of Christianity, being a new Interpretation. By the Rev. G. Croly. 12s.
The Duty of Public Worship, and setting apart proper Places for it; a Sermon preached at the Consecration of St. Paul's, Shipley. By the Rev. H. Heap.
A Sermon on the Death of Mr. Winmill, twenty-four years Clerk of St. Swithin's. By the Rev. H. Watkins. Thoughts on Public Worship. By J. Morrison. 4s. 6d.
A Memoir of Miss Bell, with specimens of her composition. By the Rev. J. Grant. 3s. 6d.
Practical Sermons. By the Rev. T. Howard.
A Vindication of the Sentiments contained in a "Letter to a Clergyman," in answer to the Rev. Mr. Whish. By R. B. Cooper, Esq. M. P. Sermons. By the Rev. J. E. Jones. 1 vol.
Sixteen Sermons, Doctrinal and Practical, elucidating the Study of Prophecy. By the Rev. J. N. Coleman. 1 vol. 8vo. 10s. 6d.
Three Sermons preached before the Judges at the Assizes of Surrey. By the Rev. H. M'Neile.
An Endeavour to recommend Primitive Christianity. By a Priest of the Catholic Church of England.
The Christian's Obligation to obey the Civil Magistrate, a Sermon. By a Presbyter of the Church of England.
The Impossibility of Righteousness by the Law, a Sermon before the University of Oxford. By the Rev. R. Dillon.
A Charge to the Clergy of Calcutta. By the late Bishop Heber.
The Sacred Preceptor, or Questions and Answers, illustrative of Scripture. 2s. 6d.
Meditations on the Sufferings of Christ, from the German of Rambach, abridged by the Rev. S. Benson. 1 vol. 8vo. 10s. 6d.
The Authenticity and Inspiration of the Holy Scriptures considered, in oppo sition to the erroneous opinions circulated on the subject. By R. Haldane.
The Duty of Bearing one another's Burdens; a Sermon on behalf of the Distressed Manufacturers. By the Rev. W. Mandell, (the profits to be devoted to the Fund for their Relief.)
The Obligations of Professed Christians to a decidedly Religious Conduct; a Sermon before the Lord Mayor and Corporation of London. By the Rev. H. G, Watkins.
Strictures on Mr. Frere's Pamphlet on the Apocalypse. By W. Cuninghame. The Moral and Spiritual Claims of the