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THE EMPLOYMENT OF INDIANS IN THE AMERICAN WAR.
established the honour, the liberties, the religion of this country, if these cruelties and practices are endured amongst us. To send forth the merciless cannibal, thirsting for blood ! against whom ? against your Protestant brethren! to lay waste their country, co desolate their dwellings, and extirpate their race and name by the aid and instrumentality of these horrible hellhounds of war! Spain can no longer boast preeminence in barbarity. She armed herself with bloodhounds to extirpate the wretched natives of Mexico; we, more ruthless, loose these dogs of war against our countrymen in America, endeared to us by every tie that can sanctify humanity. I solemnly call upon your lordships, and upon every order of men in the state, to stamp upon this infamous procedure the indelible stigma of the public abhorrence. More particularly I call upon the holy prelates of our religion to do away with this iniquity; let them perform a lustration, to purify the country from this deep and deadly sin.
My lords, I am old and weak, and at present unable to say more; but my feelings and indignation were too strong to have said less. I could not have slept this night in my bed, nor even reposed my head my pillow, without giving vent to my eternal abhorrence of such preposterous and enormous principles.
Earl of Chatham.
LA RICCIA-SUNLIGHT AFTER STORM.
It had been wild weather when I left Rome, and all across the Campagna the clouds were sweeping in sulphurous blue, with a clap of thunder or two, and breaking gleams of sun along the Claudian aqueduct, lighting up the infinity of its arches like the bridge of chaos. But as I climbed the long slope of the Alban Mount, the storm swept finally to the north, and the noble outline of the domes of Albano, and graceful darkness of its ilex grove, rose against pure streaks of alternate blue and amber; the upper sky gradually flushing through the last fragments of raincloud in deep palpitating azure, half æther and half dew. The noonday sun came slanting down the rocky slopes of La Riccia, and their masses of entangled and tall foliage, whose autumnal tints were mixed with the wet verdure of a thousand evergreens, were penetrated with it as with rain. I cannot call it colour, it was conflagration. Purple, and crimson, and scarlet, like the curtains of God's tabernacle, the rejoicing trees sank into the valley in showers of light, every separate leaf quivering with buoyant and burning life ; each, as it turned to reflect or to transmit the sunbeam, first a torch and then an emerald. Far up into the recesses of the valley, the green vistas arched like the hollows of mighty waves of some crystalline sea, with the arbutus flowers dashed along their flanks for foam, and silver flakes of orange spray tossed into the air around them, breaking over the grey walls of rock into a thousand separate stars, fading and kindling alternately as the weak wind lifted and let them fall. Every glade of grass burned like the golden floor of heaven, opening in sudden gleams as the foliage broke and closed above it, as sheet-lightning opens in a cloud at sunset; the motionless flashes of dark rock—dark though flushed with scarlet lichen, casting their quiet shadows across its restlees radiance, the fountain underneath them filling its marble hollow with blue mist and fitful sound ; and over all, the multitudinous bars of amber and rose, the sacred clouds that have no darkness, and only exist to illumine, were seen in fathomless intervals, between the solemn and orbed repose of the stone pines, passing to lose themselves in the last white blinding lustre of the measureless line where the Campagna melted into the blaze of the sea.
I THINK the noblest sea that Turner has ever painted, and, if so, the noblest certainly ever painted by man, is that of the Slave Ship. It is a sunset on the Atlantic, after prolonged storm; but the storm is partially lulled, and the torn and streaming rain-clouds are moving in scarlet lines to lose themselves in the hollow of the night. The whole surface of sea included in the picture is divided into two ridges of enormous swell—not high, nor local, but a low broad heaving of the whole ocean, like the lifting of its bosom by deep-drawn breath after the torture of the storm. Between these two ridges the fire of the sunset falls along the trough of the sea, dyeing it with an awful but glorious light, the intense and
lurid splendour which burns like gold, and bathes like blood. Along this fiery path and valley, the tossing waves, by which the swell of the sea is restlessly divided, lift themselves in dark, indefinite, fantastic forms, each casting a faint and ghastly shadow behind it along the illumined foam. They do not rise everywhere, but three or four together in wild groups, fitfully and furiously, as the under strength of the swell compels or permits them; leaving between them treacherous spaces of level and whirling water, now lighted with green and lamp-like fire, now flashing back the gold of the declining sun, now fearfully dyed from above with the indistinguishable images of the burning clouds, which fall upon them in flakes of crimson and scarlet, and give to the reckless waves the added motion of their own fiery flying. Purple and blue, the lurid shadows of the hollow breakers are cast upon the mist of the night, which gathers cold and low, advancing like the shadow of death upon the guilty * ship as it labours amidst the lightning of the sea, its thin masts written upon the sky in lines of blood, girded with condemnation in that fearful hue which signs the sky with horror and mixes its flaming flood with the sunlight, and, cast far along the desolate heave of the sepulchral waves, incarnadines the multitudinous sea.
I believe, if I were reduced to rest Turner's immortality upon any single work, I should choose this. Its daring conception, ideal in the highest sense of the word, is based on the purest truth, and wrought out with the concentrated knowledge of a life; its colour is absolutely perfect, not one false or morbid hue in any part or line, and so modulated that every square-inch of canvas is a perfect composition; its drawing as accurate as fearless; the ship buoyant, bending, and full of motion ; its tones as true as they are wonderful; and the whole picture dedicated to the most sublime of subjects and impressions—the power, majesty, and deathfulness of the open, deep, illimitable sea.
The near sea is
* She is a slaver, throwing her slaves overboard. encumbered with corpses.
GATHER a single blade of grass, and examine for a minute, quietly, its narrow sword-shaped strip of fluted green, Nothing, as it seems there, of notable goodness or beauty. A very little strength, and a very little tallness, and a few delicate long lines meeting in a point — not a perfect point neither, but blunt and unfinished, by no means a creditable or apparently much-cared-for example of Nature's workmanship; made, as it seems, only to be trodden on to-day, and to-morrow to be cast into the oven; and a little pale and hollow stalk, feeble and flaccid, leading down to the dull brown fibres of roots. And yet, think of it well, and judge whether of all the gorgeous flowers that beam in summer air, and of all strong and goodly trees, pleasant to the eyes or good for food-stately palm and pine, strong ash and oak, scented citron, burdened vine — there be any by man so deeply loved, by God so highly graced, as that narrow point of feeble green. It seems to me not to have been without a peculiar significance that our Lord, when about to work the miracle which, of all that He showed, appears to have been felt by the multitude as the most impressive
- the miracle of the loaves— commanded the people to sit down by companies ‘upon the green grass. He was about to feed them with the principal produce of earth and the sea, the simplest representations of the food of mankind. He gave them the seed of the herb; He bade them sit down upon the herb itself, which was as great a gift, in its fitness for their joy and rest, as its perfect fruit for their sustenance; thus, in this single order and act, when rightly understood, indicating for evermore how the Creator has entrusted the comfort, consolation, and sustenance of man, to the simplest and most despised of all the leafy families of the earth. And well does it fulfil its mission! Consider what we owe merely to the meadow grass, to the covering of the dark ground by that glorious enamel, by the companies of those soft, and countless, and peaceful spears. The fields ! Follow but forth for a little time the thoughts of all that we ought to recognise in those words. All spring and summer is in them — the walks by silent, scented paths — the rests in noonday heat — the joy of herds and flocks the power of all shepherd life and meditation – the life of sunlight upon the world, falling in emerald streaks,
and failing in soft blue shadows, where else it would have struck upon the dark mould, or scorching dust-pastures beside the pacing brooks soft banks and knolls of lowly hills — thymy slopes of down overlooked by the blue line of lifted sea — crisp lawns all dim with early dew, or smooth in evening warmth of barred sunshine, dinted by happy feet, and softening in their fall the sound of loving voices: all these are summed in those simple words; and these are not all. We may not measure to the full the depth of this heavenly gift, in our own land ; though still, as we think of it longer, the infinite of that meadow sweetness, Shakspere's peculiar joy, would open on us more and more, yet we have it but in part. Go out, in the spring-time, among the meadows that slope from the shores of the Swiss lakes to the roots of their lower mountains. There, mingled with the taller gentians and the white narcissus, the grass grows deep and free; and as you follow the winding mountain paths, beneath arching boughs all veiled and dim with blossom,– paths that for ever droop and rise over the green banks and mounds sweeping down in scented undulation, steep to the blue water, studded here and there with new-mown heaps, filling all the air with fainter sweetness,— look up towards the higher hills, where the waves of everlasting green roll silently into their long inlets among the shadows of the pines; and we may, perhaps, at last know the meaning of those quiet words of the 147th Psalm, 'He maketh
grass to grow up on the mountains.' There are also several lessons symbolically connected with this subject, which we must not allow to escape us. Observe, the peculiar characters of the grass, which adapt it especially for the service of man, are its apparent humility, and cheerfulness : its humility, in that it seems created only for lowest service,appointed to be trodden on, and fed upon; its cheerfulness, in that it seems to exult under all kinds of violence and suffering. You roll it, and it is stronger the next day ; you mow it, and it multiplies its shoots, as if it were grateful; you tread upon it, and it only sends up richer perfume. Spring comes, and it rejoices with all the earth,-glowing with variegated flame of flowers,—waving in soft depth of fruitful strength. Winter comes, and though it will not mock its fellow plants by growing then, it will not pine and mourn, and turn colourless or leafless as they. It is always green; and is only the brighter and gayer for the hoar-frost.