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and glowing terms, without stopping to show us what this great and glorious cause requires. We would yield to no man on earth in support of the cause of humanity : but how is this cause to be supported? This is the great question which we would fain have answered, so as not to influence our passions, but to enlighten our judgment. We can sympathize with Beccaria and Dymond, as the theme of humanity inspires their eloquence; but, after all is over, we feel that we have derived more heat than light from their learned discussions. And the interests at stake are so momentous, that the impetuous torrent of their eloquence has scarcely passed over us, before we feel constrained to inquire, whether the cause of humanity may not be made to suffer by relaxing the rigor of the law, by breaking down the protection which the terrors of death have thrown around the habitations of life.

Is not the punishment of death, then, the surest safeguard against the violence of the murderer? O, no! answers Beccaria; and, O, no! echo a hundred disciples. And why? Because, say they, with one consent, the punishment of death is not so terrible as imprisonment for life. This is the more dreadful punishment of the two, and, therefore, the more efficacious. But how is this? If imprisonment for life is more dreadful and terrific than death, how has it happened that Beccaria and his followers have advocated it out of pure humanity to the offender? Why do they wish, out of pure kindness, out of a melting compassion for the criminal, to lay upon him the heaviest burden it is in the power of man to impose? Why do they declaim against the severity of the punishment by death, if it be not, in reality, so severe as that for which they contend? These are a few of the questions which we would submit to their dispassionate consideration.

But this is not all. Beccaria has shown us the reason why imprisonment for life is more intolerable than death. “The mind,” says he, “ by collecting itself and uniting all its force, can, for a moment, repel assailing grief; but its most vigorous efforts are insufficient to resist perpetual wretchedness.” Again, he says, “Our sensibility is more easily and more powerfully affected by weak, but repeated impressions, than by a violent, but momentary impulse.” And yet, in another place, he says, “I shall be told, that perpetual slavery is as painful as death, and, therefore, as cruel. I answer, that if all the miserable moments in the life of a slave were collected into one point, it would be a more cruel punishment than any other; but these are spread over his whole life, while the pain of death exerts all its force in a moment."

It must be confessed, that the marquis Beccaria has made a wonderful discovery. He has discovered a punishment which is far preferable to that of death,-first, because it is more severe, and, therefore, more efficacious; secondly, because it is less severe, and therefore more humane. It recommends itself to the legislator by its incomparable dreadfulness; and to the philanthropist by its superior mildness and leniency. It is more insufferable than death, because it is perpetual wretchedness, because it is longcontinued suffering; and yet it is less painful than death, because it spreads over one's whole life. For the very same reason that it is lighter, it is also heavier; and it is to be adopted for the very same reason that its rival is to be rejected.

The law against murder is not only charged with barbarity; it is charged with murder itself. “There is much justice," says Dymond, "in an observation of Beccaria, 'Is it not absurd that the laws which detest and punish homicide should, in order to prevent murder, publicly commit murder themselves ?!” It would be a waste of time to point out all the absurdities involved in this charge of absurdity against the laws. Let it suffice to state, that the intention has something to do with the crime; and that when there is no malice, there is no murder. There is a slight difference, we humbly conceive, between the law-maker, who, from a solemn sense of duty, and a regard to the public good, attaches the penalty of death to the crime of murder; and the dark assassin, who, from a spirit of malice or revenge, takes the life of his fellowman; and such distinctions, it seems to us, should not be overlooked by men who aspire to become the moral regenerators of the age, the grand illuminators of the world. They must first reform the moral code of the universe before we can consent to touch the instruments by which they would reform the penal codes of the earth.

“The punishment of robbery,” says Beccaria, “not accompanied with violence, should be pecuniary.” What! should the laws which detect and punish robbery, publicly commit robbery themselves? Should they forbid a man to take the property of another by force; and yet, in view of all the world, forcibly take it themselves ? Is it not wonderful that it did not occur to Beccaria and Dymond, that if capital punishment is “murder," then every pecuniary fine is robbery, and every penal infliction cruelty ?

Beccaria has displayed no little ingenuity in contriving to throw the terrors of death far into the dim back-ground, and to give bold and striking prominence to the evils of imprisonment. But in spite of all his efforts to subdue it, the voice of nature will sometimes speak out, and we hear him deprecating death as the most dreadful of all evils. Such has been, and such will be, the voice

and testimony of nature in all ages and nations of the world : it has most emphatically proclaimed death “the king of terrors.” In vain are we told, then, that the pain of death is not so great as the pain of perpetual slavery; there is something more in death than the mere pang which attends the severance of soul and body. In vain are we told that some men can meet death with fearless intrepidity : where one criminal can thus meet it, there are a hundred to whom it is the cup of trembling and astonishment. In vain are we told that the execution of the criminal is but a momentary spectacle, while his perpetual servitude furnishes a continued and lasting example: the terrors of death may be felt by the evil doer, when there is no public exhibition to awaken them in his breast. They enter into his mind; they take hold of his conscience; they form a part and parcel of his very being; and though he should fly to the uttermost ends of the earth, and bury himself in the profoundest depths of the universe, yet there will they be with him in all the awfulness of avenging wrath. No device of sophistry, and no coloring of rhetoric, can conceal the real terrors of death. We can measure all other evils; but there is something in death which passeth understanding. It puzzles the will, it perplexes the sense, it confounds the imagination, and it wrings the soul of the guilty with a mysterious and awful agony which hath never been uttered. However it may be with particular cases, there is no other evil which makes so tremendous an appeal to the common passions of mankind as death; and, when compared with the efficacy of its terrors, all other modes of prevention sink into perfect insignificance.

III. In the third place we shall proceed to consider the ARGUMENT FROM REVELATION.—This argument we regard as directly and plainly in favor of capital punishment. It is said, “ Whoso sheddeth man's blood, by man shall his blood be shed; for in the image of God made he man.” Some have attempted to evade the force of this passage by saying, that it is a prediction; and others, by alledging that it has been abolished by the precepts and spirit of Christianity.

That it is not a prediction may be clearly gathered from the context, in which God declares that he himself requires the blood of the murderer, and that he requires it at the hand of man. Even if it is a prophecy, we trust that no one who values his religious character will undertake to falsify it; especially as it is a prophecy of which God himself requires the fulfillment. And, besides, supposing it to be a prediction, its divine Author has declared, that the inurderer will be put to death, not because human legislators

Vol. VI.-30

are barbarous and bloody wretches, but because “in the image of God made he man." Now, our opponents may interpret this reason as they please ; they may affirm that the murderer will be pr* to death by man, because his victim was made in the image of (od, and, therefore, this punishment will be adjudged due to him and to the world; or because human legislators are made in the image of God, and, therefore, they will uphold his righteous law. In neither sense can it be made to serve their

purpose. The reason upon which this law is based, shows that it was designed to be universal and perpetual in its operation. The punishment of death is required to be inflicted upon those who shall wantonly and wickedly take the life of man; because "in the image of God made he man.It is absurd to infer, as many have done, that this ordinance has passed away, because many of the Jewish institutions have been abolished. This formed no part of the Jewish code. It was delivered to man long before the Jewish nation had an existence. Nor was it founded upon any local reason, like those portions of the Jewish law which have been abrogated.

This ordinance, it will be perceived, was not enacted because it was adapted to any particular state of society. It derived its life, its energy, its being, from nothing that was circumstantial in the condition of man. If the whole Jewish code, and every other conventional system, were swept away, it would still stand upon its own foundation-a foundation which has been laid as deep as that of nature itself. It is applicable alike to the Jew, to the Gentile, and to the Christian. It regards neither the refinements of one age, nor the barbarism of another. It looks above and beyond all factitious distinctions ; ït passes by all that is local and transitory, all that is subject to time and change, and it fastens upon the essential and imperishable elements of man's nature, as its reason and its resting place. And here, so long as man is made in the image of God, are we persuaded it will stand unmoved and immovable.

But it is urged, with great confidence, that the punishment of death is abolished by the precepts and spirit of Christianity. Do unto others as you would they should do unto you, and, “Love thy neighbor as thyself,” are the most comprehensive and beautiful precepts ever given to man: the one, as the guide of his external conduct; the other, as the rule and measure of his internal affections. These are the bright manifestations of brotherly love, which are supposed to be at war with the barbarous custom of punishment by death.

Yet these very precepts, in all the fullness of their spirituality and beauty, were borrowed from that very code with whose provisions it is supposed to be inconsistent. In Leviticus it is said, “Thou shalt not avenge, nor bear any grudge against the children of thy people, but thou shalt love thy neighbor as thyself.And again, “If any stranger sojourn with thee in your land, ye shall not vex him. But the stranger that dwelleth with you,

shall be as one born among you, and thou shalt love him as thyself.Now, does the gospel require more than this? Does it require a man to love his neighbor more than himself? If not, how can it be pretended that the gospel law of love requires the abrogation of a Jewish ordinance, with which this very law co-existed in the code from which it was borrowed? If this law required the abrogation of capital punishment now, why did it not require it then?

Both laws existed in the same code, established by the Almighty; the one as a rule of private conduct, the other as a rule of public justice: and yet we are told, by men professing to believe in their divine origin, that they are utterly irreconcilable, and exclusive of each other. It is true, that our Saviour, according to the common translation, said to his disciples, “ A new commandment give I unto you, that ye love one another;" but the true rendering is,-a commandment renew I unto you; and, indeed, as we have already seen, this was but a republication of the precept given to the Jews. Thus, in so far as a spirit of brotherly love is concerned, the brightest and most attractive features of the gospel are but a faithful transcript of the Jewish law.

The great mistake, we conceive, which has been made by all those who have reasoned against capital punishment, and especially by those who have reasoned from the precepts and spirit of Christianity, is this,—they have supposed that the rules of public justice are precisely the same as those which are designed to regulate the private conduct of individuals. A greater fallacy could not be committed ; and although few have openly and explicitly advanced such a position, yet the arguments and declamations of many have tacitly assumed its correctness.

But those who are so ready to brand the Jewish code as cruel and barbarous, do not scruple to appeal to it whenever they can make it subserve their purpose. They frequently appeal to the sixth commandment, “Thou shalt not kill,” in order to show that society cannot rightfully take the life of man under any circumstances. Here, they exclaim, is a clear and unequivocal injunction, extending to all men, both in their social and individual capacity. But when they contend that the words, “Thou shalt not kill,” are

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