« VorigeDoorgaan »
imagination, how logical and profound his and, as a consequence, dreams of princely reasoning, or how interesting and important lovers, and romantic adventures, and midthe facts of which he treats-it all avails night elopements--what can she do with the nothing-it is carelessly read, makes no im- sober realities of every-day life? What pression, and is easily and quickly forgot- taste has she for articles possessing a high ten.
order of literary merit? Can she, after, for Again-a person may read no more than a length of time, pursuing such a course, enthe mind can properly digest, and may read joy a treatise upon science? Will she dewith the utmost care and attention ; yet, if light in history, or biography, or anything he is careless or injudicious in the selection but the silly love-tales to which she has haof his reading matter, not one-half the ben- bituated her mind ? Certainly not. A conefit that might otherwise be derived from firmed novel-reader has no taste for a sound, careful reading, will be realized. And here, healthy literature. His mind is enfeebled I believe, is an evil of great magnitude, and and diseased, and turns with disgust from one for the correction of which every good whatever requires patient and laborious citizen should use his influence. Look at thought. The wonders of the world, and of the extent of the evil. Consider the great the myriads of worlds which sparkle in the number of fictitious and immoral publica- firmament above us, have no charms for such tions with which the land is flooded. Look a mind. Diversion is all it seeks. It craves at the immense sales of the many publishing nothing but present amusement. The fubouses engaged in the “light literature” bu- ture is forgotten ; the whole being is absorbed siness-look at the publications themselves, in the present; and the whole present is and then say if nine-tenths of them are not bound up in two pieces of yellow paper, and entirely useless, and many--too many, alas! called a novel. And the novel, as a matter positively injurious.
of course, treats of plighted lovers, and cruel Much-everything almost-in the forma- fathers, and gray-headed misers, and old castion and development of character, depends tles, and designing attorneys, and midnight upon a person's reading. Tell me what a elopements, and “affairs of honor,'' and broyoung man or a young woman reads, and I ken hearts, and ruined fortunes, and hidden will tell you the character of that person and treasures, and— a marriage. what he or she may expect in future life. This constitutes the mental food of the Show me a young man that delights in noy-novel-reader. The ingredients above menel-reading--that will throw by the most in- | tioned are compounded in various proportausting treatises on the sciences, history, tions in different novels, aud occasionally, biography, &c., for the purpose of devouring for the sake of variety, a few additional items -uot reading the last silly, sickly, shallow are added; but the real value of the material shilling povel, and I will point you to one of which novels are composed, varies but litwho will never prove an ornament to socie-tle. ty, por an honor to his country. Though Every one is aware that the perusal of his natural talents may be good, yet, if he such works requires no mental effort. They has contracted a habit of novel-reading-has afford no real pleasure to the higher intelbecomeso attached to what is politely termed lectual powers, and produce no feeling of "light literature," as to prefer it to all other enjoyment, unless that can be called enjoykind of reading-he need cherish no aspi- ment, which is caused by their ministering rations for the future; there is nothing in to those morbid sentiments and feelings Bere for him, but disappointment, and re- which always exist in the mind of the con.. marse, and shame. And the young lady firmod novel-reader. bat spends whole nights in novel-reading, There are but few, I am well aware, who end sighs and weeps over imaginary heroệs, wholly condemn the reading of novels.
Many works of this class, it is said, are not joy its wonders. The mysterious phenomena merely harmless, but really useful. But, if which every changing season brings to view, this is really som-a fact which may well be pass away unheeded, and they are none the questioned—it is yet a difficult matter to wiser for what bas happened before their draw the line of separation between the evil eyes. They saw, but did not understand; and the good. Who shall point out to the and do not seem to be aware that the money young and inexperienced, what may and paid for the last two novels would have what may not be read? Who shall say purchased an excellent treatise upon Srience, read this, and abstain from that? And, if in which all these phenomena are familiarly left to choose for themselves, much valuable explained; nor that the time spent in perustime will be wasted; many useless, and (ing those novels would have enabled them probably injurious books read; and many I to master this treatise, and thus prepare false and erroneous views in regard to life, themselves to enjoy the remarkable phenoinand the duties of life, interwoven with their ena that so frequently occur. principles.
In conclusion, let me say to all readers of But why should there be so much reading fiction-you are losing half the enjoyment of fiction ? Certainly not because of the of life. The past and present are crowded scarcity of books of facts ; for, in our days, with great events. Happiness consists in
of making many books, there is no end;" Icarning, in knowing, and in doing. and books of facts-true books—are annu- ! We must learn-must know, what has ally issued from the press, in numbers so been, what is, and what is to be. We must great, that was any individual required to also learn to do, to act, to make our influ
se them all, or even a hundredth part of ence felt, to make our mark upon the age in them, he would be forced to say, with the
which we live. To some extent the world sacred writer, that "much study is a weari
will be better or worse for our having lived Dess to the flesh.”
in it. Which shall it be? Young man, deBiographies of great and good men—the cide. The choice is in your own breast. No reading of which, if well written and truth- man can decide for you. But the whole ful, is always profitable—are numerous, and
world is in motion, and if you would have within the reach of all. And hundreds of your influence felt you most arouse and be these stirring narratives, are as attractive and stir yourself. Do this, and all the great and interesting in every respect, as the best class good will respect, and love, and aid yon; of fictitious writings. History, too, affords a but shut yourself up in your closet, and spend vast field for pleasing and profitable inves- the prime of your days in novel reading, anı! tigation; yet many are the young people of all the wise, and good, and truly great, will both sexes, who spend hours, days, and point at you the finger of scorn, and cry weeks, every year, over their charming nov. SHAME! els, and are still as profoundly ignorant of Mundy, Genesco Co., Jan. 1st, 1852. most of the great events that have transpired in the world, as if they had lived in the days of Methuselah. They prefer the Romånce BENEVOLENCE. Here is a calm, sweet calm, of the Forest to the History of Greece, and here are the ways of pleasantnets and the are more familiar with the silly story of A-paths of peace. The garden which she tills lonzo and Melissa, than with the true and is the human heart; and the seed which sho truly wonderful story of Napoleon and his scatters will bear their fruit in Heaven. llere Josephine
are the pomps of science, and the splendor Such readers know nothing of the Natural of genius; the glitter of wealth, the might of Sciences. Nature is to them a sealed book, armies. With her pale finger, she points to They cannot appreciate its beauties, nor en- I the annals of the past, and they will all be
come as chaff before the wind. Yet she duced a sort of acorn, which resembled cinstops not here. Speaks she now in tones as namon in taste, but was an inferior article. solemn as the midnight bell, of the nothing. Gonzola was provoked at not finding more ness of human greatness. Listen again !|valuable objects. He asked the natives and you hear her clarion voice proclaiming where El Dorado lay; and, because they alud, that human virtue never dies! Ap- could give him no intelligence of this fabupears she now with shadows of death upon lous country, the cruel Spaniard tortured one hand, and the history of the world upon them to extort a confession of that which the other, to teach how pitiful is individuals they did not know. Some of them he burnt ambition, and how senseless the love of self. alive, and others he threw to be devoured by
bis dogs. DISCOVERY OF THE RIVER AMA- He soon experienced the effects of his ZON.
savage cruelty. The tidings had spread from
tribe to tribe; and, when he inquired for the ATTER the Spaniards had conquered Peru. rich countries of which he was in search, they heard of another country, in the east,
he east the Indians, not daring to contradict him, shich was said to be very rich, and
*deluded him with favorable reports, and sent
to aloand in cinnamon. Gonzola, one of the
him on. The Spaniards endured every debrothers of Pizarro, determined to take pos- gree
sagree of suffering, from the difficulties of ession of this inviting region, and then to OL
n to of their march. They climbed steep and search for the famous golden country of El rocky mountains; waded through marshes, Dorado, which was supposed to exist some- lagoons,
w to aviat come. lagoons, and flooded savannas; and were Where in the neighborhood
forced to kill their dogs for food. In 1541, he set out from Peru, with a! In this manner, the Spaniards reached the force of two hundred foot soldiers, one hun. head streams of the Amazon, a river till del borse, four thousand Indians, to be then unknown to them, except that its tsel in carrying burdens, and four thousand mouth had been seen by Pinzon, in 1499.svine, and llamas, or Indian sheep. for pro- They built a vessel, and begun to sail down visions. They first entered the territory of the Coca, one of these head streams. They Quizos, the last tribe whom the Peruvi- passed an extensive tract of uninhabited an Incas had subdued. These people fled country. The current of the river was at their approach. While the army halted strong; they were weak from want of food, here, a violent earthquake took place, which and they had no prospect but that of perthrzt down the Indian houses and cleft the ishing. earth in many places.
Orellana, however, was determined to proFurious storms of thunder and lightning ceed onward. He renounceal the commission Kilowel; and sich torrents of rain fell, which he held under Gonzalo, assumed the that the Spaniards had great difficulty in command of a portion of the adventurers trossing the rivers. They were compelled himself, and sailed down the river. Provi. to ent their way through thick woods, and siops now entirely failed them. They had
o cross a high chain of mountains, where eaten up all their dogs, and were reduced to many of the Indians were frozen to death. the necessity of boiling their old shoes They also lost their live stock and other pro- leather straps, &c., for food. visions.
When they had almost abandoned the At length they were overtaken by another hope of life, they heard, just at daylight, body of Spaniards, from Quito, under Fran- the sound of a drum. Shortly after they esco Orellana. With this re-inforcement, saw four canoes, and a village where a great they mirched onwards, and came to a terri- body of Indians were drawu, up in order of tory where the spice-trees grew. They pro- battle. The Spaniards were too hungry to
wait for negotiations. They attacked the fore them, and many large towns, the peoIndians, put them to flight, and found a ple of which had been apprised of their plentiful supply of food.
coming, and were assembled, apparently with Notwithstanding this act of hostility, the hostile intentions.. Indians came to a parley with the Spaniards. The Spaniards offered them trinkets, which Peace was made; provisions, consisting of they refused, and let fly a volley of arrows curassos—a bird resembling a peacock-par- at them. A battle ensued, and, according to trid yes, fish, &c., were liberally supplied to the narration of the Spaniarıls, ten or twelve the voyagers; and the next day came thir- | Amazons fought at the head of the Indians. teen Indian chiefs to see the strangers.-- They are described as tall and large-limbed They were gayly adorned with feathers, and women, of light complexion, with long hair, had plates of gold upon the breast.
plaited and banded round the head. Seven Here the Spaniards built a better vessel, or eight of them were killed, and then the and abandoned their old one. They sailed Indians took to flight. down the river Napo, through a populous! The adventurers were now upon the main country. The Indians gave them tortoises stream of the Amazon. The river was so and parrots, and Orellana took formal pos-, broad that the Spaniards could not see across session of the country for the king of Spain. it. Further downward they had some inThey now began to hear stories of a nation tercourse with the natives, and beard more of Amazons, or female warriors, on the about the community of female warriors, banks of the river below them. These peo- who were said to govern all this region. were called, Cooniatoopi, or the mighty wo- The Indians told them that the dominions men.
of the Amazons contained five temples of Proceeding on their voyage, they found the sun, all covered with plates of gold.the shore lined with hostile tribes, who at- Many walled cities, containing houses of tacked the Spaniards, beating their rude stone and other marvels, were also described drums, sounding horns and trumpets, and by the narrators. The Indians probably inshouting tremendous war-whoops. They vented a part of these tales, and the remainhad conjurers among them, daubed over with der was supplied by the credulity and exag. ointment, who spat ashes at the Spaniards, geration of the Spanish adventurers. All and scattered water toward them. Escaping that is certain concerning the Amazons from these assailants, they next passed thro' seems to be, that women were sometimes a peaceable country, with towns containing seen fighting with bows and arrows. large streets opening upon the river.
Amid adventures like these, Orellana and A great river from the south now joined his party sailed down this great river, till, the stream on which they were sailing. Its on the 26th of August, 1512, they reached waters, according to the Spaniards, were as the ocean. The story which they told of black as ink; and for more than sixty miles the Amazons was universally credited, and after the junction of the two currents, the caused the newly-discovered stream to be dark river kept its course unmingled with called by the name which it now generally the other. An Indian, whom they took, in- bears. tormed them that this was the territory of the Amazons.
THE OTTOMAN EMPIRE. But as yet they saw nothing of the female) warriors. At one town they found payed According to a writer in the Whig Reroads, lined with fruit trees, and pillories | view, there is an ancient superstition among with human heads set upon spikes. the Turks, that they are to lose Constanti.
Further on, as they turned a bend in the nople, and the common feeling is, that the river, they saw a wide extent of country be- 1 hour of downfall, is near at hand. The flows
ing roles of the high officers and their pic | Probably no race, from so small a beginturesque are no more to be seen ; from the ning has wrought out a higher and pobler Saltan down-the military, the police, and destiny. Sprang from the bardy yeomanry the various officials wear a blue European of the north-nurtured not in the lap of uniform, and the ungainly tarboose, or round luxury; and trained not to indolence and red cap of the Fez. No longer do the trai- sloth, but early aecustomed to self-denial and tors' heads grin from the seraglio gate; no activity-noted during a long period only more faithless wives are slipped through the for their fearlessness and daring. They beFide trough into a sea-green grave. Neith-came the conquerors of the primitive Enge are the packs of wolfish hounds as nu- lish, and soon spread over Great Britain; and merous and formidable in the streets; nor thence their progress reaching onward the merchants as honest, hospitable, lazy and through the present, still points to the rearious as of yore. Snake-charmers are rare, lizatiou of some great and wonderful plan to slave-markets nearly deserted, opium smo- be developed in future. kers all but unknown; richly-paying “Ho- The handful of hardy men, who, throwing Fadis can enter every place unmolested, themselves upon England's coast, conquered and detect nothing of the ancient bigotry and supplanted the possessors of the soil, of the all conquering Moslem. And yet, but, shadowed forth, in embryo, those dedecaying as it is at heart, every effort to cisive traits of character which have distin. improve, failing through the corruption of guished them since that period. the agents of Government, European after Such influences can never be confined European throwing up his employment in within the limits of one party, nor such a disgust, or dismisseri to give place to some people long be gathered in the embraces of court favorite or Armenian pretender-with one nation. A sea girt isle was too small a an army of three hundred thousand men, compass to expand the energies of a race, forty ships of var, several steam vessels, the which contained within themselves the control of all the force of Egypt, and a rev- germ of great and mighty action. ene increased by the abolition of several Power and dominion have attended their monopolies, the Ottoman Empire may still footsteps until the sun ceases not to shine ertlive the predictions of strangers and the upon their broad lands. Their rule is ex. expectations of friends.
tended from pole to pole.
Change, too, has marked their progress--For the Miscellany.
the barbarous become civilized, the civilized,
enlightened; the uncouth became refined; DESTINY OF THE ANGLO-SAXON
the cheerless hut, has given place to the cotRACE.
| tage and the palace; and, the senseless jar.
gon of pagan-worship and Druid priest, have BY C. C. MILLER
yielded to the mild and simple faith of a If the rise and fall of nations are sublime crucified and risen Savior. mbjects for moral contemplation ; the rise, Time passed on, and a chosen band; choprogress, and elevation of races are certainly sen not of men, but of God; urged by relig, objects upon which the miud can dwell with ious intolerance prepare to seek a new and peculiar interest.
distant shore--a horne in the midst of naTo trace the onward progress of human ture's ruder forms, and wilder children,ociety, has been the province of historian Methinks I see them now, as goaded on by and poet; yet would I arrogate to myself persecution, they leave their native hearths, the claim of neither, as I attempt to sketch the graves of their fathers, the scenes of the course of my own race, and in the past childhood and the loved ones of their hearts, draw roy conelusions concerning the future. henceforth, to be seen no more, That