Since ice is lighter than water, whenever a glacier enters the sea the dense salt water tends to buoy it up. The great tenacity of the frozen mass enables it to resist the pressure for a time. By and by, however, as the ice reaches deeper water, its cohesion is overcome, and large segments are forced from its terminal part, and floated up from the bed of the sea to sail away as icebergs. The glacier evidently crops under the water to considerable depths, or so long as the force of cohesion is able to resist the tendency of the salt water to press it upward.


Though Greenland is said to be inhabited only upon the south and west coast, there is a record of an early settlement upon the side toward Iceland, with which there has been no communication for four hundred years. The colony was planted about A.D. 1,000, which flourished and maintained intercourse with its mother country till the beginning of the fifteenth century. Since that time, owing to the setting in of the arctic current, and the consequent gradual increase of ice upon the coast, the colony became inaccessible, and the records of it disappear from history. various intervals between 1579, 1751, etc., down to our own time, the intrepid Danes have striven in vain to reopen communication with their lost colony. This emerald coast, with valleys well stocked with reindeer, and verdant glades, is now shut in by the pitiless ice-pack, and the fate of its inhabitants ought to excite the interest of the world. It would be very interesting to be informed of the condition of this colony, whether the increasing cold has enlarged the glaciers so as to push the dwellings out to sea, or whether the habitations are still standing, and a population has sprung up who know of the outside world only by tradition.


THE Puritanism for which men began now to suffer and die throughout all England had sprung up naturally from the corruptions of the church of Elizabeth. Yet it may be traced to the age of Constantine. To restore the purity, simplicity, and fervour of the early church, its simple rites and fraternal unity, had been the aim of the Cathari and the Vaudois, the Albigenses and the Wycliffites, the Hussites, and at last of Calvin and Luther. It was easily discovered by the least cultivated reformer that the churches founded by Paul and John bore no resemblance to the splendid spectacle presented by the papal or the English liturgy; that haughty bishops and martial popes could be in no sense successors of the apostles; that the plainness, purity, and humility


recommended by Paul had no place in any of the visible churches. In England it is probable that the Wycliffite reforms had never lost their influence upon the people, and that Henry VIII. was the leader of a large party who had long been waiting for the advent of a Luther and a Calvin. But Henry had stopped upon the brink of progress: the people pressed onward, and in Henry VI.'s time had torn down the images from churches, and trampled relics and croziers in the dust. When Cranmer published his prayer-book, the Puritan party already existed in the church, pledged to a bitter hatred for formalism and ritualism of every degree. Yet the comparative mildness of Cranmer and Ridley had seduced even Hooper to assume the episcopal robes. Under Mary the chiefs of the Reformation perished in the flames; and with Elizabeth the ritualists once more sprang into power. Pomp and outward show entered into the churches. The Host was worshipped at splendid altars, tapers glowed in the queen's private chapel; and the spirit of persecution was again the offspring of a hollow formalism. That barbaric cruelty which it had been the single aim of Christianity to extirpate from among its followers became the ruling principle of the English church. No dissent was to be tolerated, no neglect of its ritual allowed, no difference in its outward form. There was to be but one church in the nation, and disloyalty to its doctrines and rites was both heresy and treason. To this theory the Puritans at first gave a perfect adhesion; they never desired to separate from the national church, nor to countenance a revolt against the laws of Elizabeth; they hoped to reform it from within, and they were prepared to persecute those who refused to submit to the royal ordinances with almost as much rigour as Whitgift or Bancroft. They could scarcely see how a church could exist separate from the state, or a humble congregation constitute an independent ecclesiastical community. But the idea came upon them suddenly. A portion of the Puritans, shocked by the vices of their visible church, took refuge in congregationalism. They saw that Paul had never founded a national church, nor had the early Christians any other form of church government than that of separate congregations. They began to separate themselves from the English church. They founded congregations in Southwark or in Scrooby. The hand of the law fell upon them fearfully, yet they still met in secret places and in lonely forests. They filled the prisons, and they perished on the scaffold; yet no persecution could check that powerful movement, and in the pains and martyrdom of men like Barrow and Greenwood was laid the foundation of the English churches. Eugene Lawrence.




OH! a wonderful stream is the River Time!

And it flows through the realm of Tears;
With a faultless rhythm and a musical rhyme,
And a broadening sweep and a surge sublime,
As it bends with the ocean of years.

How the winters are drifting like flakes of snow!
And the summers like buds between;

And the ears and the sheaves how they come and go,
On the River's breast with its ebb and flow,

As they glide in the shadow and sheen.

There's a magic isle up the River Time,
Where the softest of airs are playing;
There's a cloudless sky and a tropical clime,
And a voice as sweet as a vesper chime,

And the Junes with the roses are staying.

And the name of that isle is the "Long Ago,"
And we bury our treasures there;

There are brows of beauty and bosoms of snow,
(They are heaps of dust, but we loved them so,)
There are trinkets and tresses of hair.

There are fragments of songs that nobody sings,
And a part of an infant's prayer;

There's a harp unswept and a lute without strings,
There are broken vows and pieces of rings,

And the garments she used to wear.

There are hands which are waved when that fairy shore
By the mirage is left in air;

And sometimes we hear, through the turbulent war,
Sweet voices we've heard in the days gone before,

When the wind down the River is fair.

Oh! remembered for aye be that blessed Isle
All the day of life till night;

And when evening comes with its beautiful smile,
And our eyes are closed to slumber awhile,

May that greenwood of soul be in sight.

-Owen Meredith.


Anecdotes and Selections.

GREATNESS AND GOODNESS.-Take goodness, with the average intellectual power, and compare it with mere greatness of intellect and social standing, and it is far the nobler quality; and if God should offer me one of them, I would not hesitate which to choose. No, the greatest intellect which God ever bestowed I would not touch if I were bid to choose between that and the goodness of an average woman; I would scorn it and say, Give it to Lucifer; give me the better gift. When I say goodness is greater than greatness, I mean to say it gives a deeper and serener joy in the private heart, joins men more tenderly to one and another, and more earnestly to God. I honour intellect, reason and understanding; I wish we took ten times more pains to cultivate them than we do. I honour greatness of mind,-great reason, which intuitively sees truths, great laws and the like; great understanding, which learns special laws and works in details; the understanding that masters things for use and beauty; that can marshal millions of men into an organization that shall last for centuries. I once coveted such power, and am not wholly free from the madness of it yet. I see its use. I hope I am not ignorant of the joys of science and letters; I am not of the pursuit of these. I bow reverently before the men of genius, and sit gladly at their feet. But the man who sees justice and does it, who knows love and lives it, who has a great faith, and trusts in Godlet him have a mind quite inferior, and culture quite a little—I must yet honour and reverence that man far more than he who has the greatest power of intellect. I know that knowledge is power, and reverence it; but justice is a higher power, and love is a manlier power, and religion is a diviner power, each greater than the mightiest mind. Theodore Parker.

POWER OF FAITH.-It cannot be. God must change before He will let a sinner perish who trusts in Christ. Oh! it is wonderful what power faith has. I recollect standing at the Mansion House one day waiting to cross over to the other side, when the omnibuses were coming from all the corners of the compass, and I was looking for an opportunity to run in and out between them. A_blind man came up and said, "I am sure you will lead me across." I am sure I did not want the job; but I am quite sure that, if the blind man was sure I would do it, I could not decline to do it; and I did it accordingly. I did not like to have a blind man's confidence thrown away. It seemed as if his confidence was my compulsion. And, oh! blind sinner, lay hold upon the skirts of Christ to-night, and say, "Jesus, I believe that Thou wilt lead me into heaven. At any rate I mean to trust Thee to do it. I have done with saving myself, and I mean to rely on Thee, and Thee only." I tell you, your faith will compel Him; your faith shall hold Him fast. He will do anything for faith. Was He not overcome at the brook by Jacob's faith? Did not faith in the woman that touched the hem of His garment win a cure? And when He


apake to the Syro-Phoenician woman, and called her a dog, did she not win healing for her daughter by the brave stand she made by her faith? The Lord waiteth to be gracious! Trust Him, sinner. The Lord help you to do so; and He shall have the glory, for ever and ever!-Spurgeon.

PRAYER.-Prayer is not overcoming God's reluctance; it is laying hold of His highest willingness. Cold prayers are as arrows without heads, swords without edges, birds without wings; they pierce not, they cut not, they fly not up to heaven. Prayer, with real belief and hope, will enable us always to roll our cares from ourselves upon the Lord. Dealing in generalities is the death of prayer. The woman of Canaan knew just what she wanted, and asked for that thing. The gift of prayer may have praise of men, but it is the grace of prayer that has power with God. Not only to tell Him of our wants, that is half prayer; but to speak to Him of His promises, and to rest ourselves in His word. Some never begin to pray until God has ceased to hear. Many times we go to God as languidly as if we were afraid he would accept us; and pray as coldly as if we were unwilling He should hear us. Prayer is want felt, help desired, with faith to obtain it. It is not so much the length as the strength of prayer that is required; not so much the labour of the lip as the travail of the heart.

DUTCH CURE FOR LAZINESS.-During a morning walk, a merchant who was detained by business in Amsterdam came to a group of men who were standing round a well, into which a strongly built man had just been let down. A pipe, whose mouth was at the top of the well, had been opened, and a stream of water from it was flowing down into the well and beginning gradually to fill it. The fellow below had quite enough to do, if he did not want to be drowned, to keep the water out by means of a pump which was at the bottom of the well. The merchant, pitying the man, asked for an explanation of what seemed a heartless, cruel joke. "Sir," replied an old man standing "that man is, as you see, healthy and strong; I have myself offered him work twenty times, nevertheless, he allows laziness to get the better of him, and will make any excuse to beg his bread from door to door, though he might easily earn it himself by work if he liked. We are now trying to make him feel that he can work. If he uses the strength which is in his arms he will be saved; if he lets them hang idle, he will be drowned. But look," continued the old Dutchman as he went to the edge of the well, "the fellow finds out that he has got muscles; in an hour we shall let him out with better resolutions for the future." Such was the case, and the cure was effectual.


TRIFLES.-Michael Angelo was one day explaining to a visitor at his studio what he had been doing at a statue since his previous visit. "I have retouched this part-polished that-softened this featurebrought out that muscle-given some expression to this lip, and more energy to that limb." "But these are trifles," remarked the visitor. "It may be so," replied the sculptor, "but recollect that trifles make perfection, and perfection is no trifle."


« VorigeDoorgaan »