صور الصفحة
النشر الإلكتروني

But is there in the aggregate of society, less opportunity (sion is defective, and the employment is to them an for intellectual and moral cultivation, on account of the unusual and laborious one. There are but very few existence of slavery? We must estimate institutions who do not enjoy other means, more effectual for relifrom their aggregate of good or evil. I refer to the gious instruction. There is no place of worship opened views which I have before expressed to this society. It for the white population, from which they are excluded. is by the existence of slavery, exempting so large a I believe it a mistake, to say that the instructions there portion of our citizens from the necessity of bodily given are not adapted to their comprehension, or calculabor, that we have a greater proportion than any other lated to improve them. If they are given as they people, who have leisure for intellectual pursuits, and ought to be-practically, and without pretension, and the means of attaining a liberal education. If we throw are such as are generally intelligible to the free part of away this opportunity, we shall be morally responsible the audience, comprehending all grades of intellectual for the neglect or abuse of our advantages

, and shall capacity, they will not be unintelligible to slaves. I most unquestionably pay the penalty. But the blame doubt whether this be not better than instruction, adwill rest on ourselves, and not on the character of our dressed specially to themselves—which they might look institutions.

upon as a device of the master's, to make them more I add further, notwithstanding that equality seems to obedient and profitable to himself. Their minds, genebe the passion of the day, if, as Providence has evidently rally, shew a strong religious tendency, and they are decreed, there can be but a certain portion of intellec- fond of assuming the office of religious instructers to tual excellence in any community, it is better that it each other; and perhaps their religious notions are not should be unequally divided. It is better that a part much more extravagant than those of a large portion should be fully, and highly cultivated, and the rest utter of the free population of our country. I am not sure ly ignorant. To constitute a society, a variety of offices that there is a much smaller proportion of them, than must be discharged, from those requiring but the lowest of the free population, who make some sort of religious degree of intellectual power, to those requiring the very profession. It is certainly the master's interest that they highest, and it should seem that the endowments ought should have proper religious sentiments, and if he fails to be apportioned according to the exigencies of the in his duty towards them, we may be sure that the consituation. In the course of human affairs, there arise sequences will be visited not upon them, but upon him. difficulties which can only be comprehended, or sur- If there were any chance of their elevating their mounted by the strongest native power of intellect, rank and condition in society, it might be matter of strengthened by the most assiduous exercise, and en- hardship, that they should be debarred those rudiments riched with the most extended knowledge-and even of knowledge which open the way to further attainthese are sometimes found inadequate to the exigency. ments. But this they know cannot be, and that further The first want of society is-leaders. Who shall esti- attainments would be useless to them. Of the evil of mate the value to Athens, of Solon, Aristides, Themis- this, I shall speak hereafter. A knowledge of reading, tocles, Cymon, or Pericles? If society have not leaders writing, and the elements of arithmetic, is convenient qualified as I have said, they will have those who will and important to the free laborer, who is the transactor lead them blindly to their loss and ruin. Men of no of his own affairs, and the guardian of his own integreat native power of intellect, and of imperfect and rests—but of what use would they be to the slave ? superficial knowledge, are the most mischievous of ail— These alone do not elevate the mind or character, if none are so busy, meddling, confident, presumptuous, such elevation were desirable. and intolerant. The whole of society receives the If we estimate their morals according to that which benefit of the exertions of a mind of extraordinary should be the standard of a free man's morality, then i endowments. Of all communities, one of the least di- grant they are degraded in morals—though by no means sirable, would be that in which imperfect, superficial, to the extent which those who are unacquainted with half-education should be universal. The first care of the institution seem to suppose. We justly suppose, a state which regards its own safety, prosperity and that the Creator will require of man, the performance honor, should be, that when minds of extraordinary of the duties of the station in which his providence has power appear, to whatever department of knowledge, placed him, and the cultivation of the virtues which art or science, their exertions may be directed, the are adapted to their performance; that he will make means should be provided of their most consummate allowance for all imperfection of knowledge, and the cultivation. Next to this, that education should be as absence of the usual helps and motives wisich lead widely extended as possible.

to self-correction and improvement. The degradation Odium has been cast upon our legislation, on account of morals relates principally to loose notions of honesty, of its forbidding the clements of education to be com- leading to petty thefts ; lo falsehood and to licentious municated to slaves. But in truth what injury is done intercourse between the sexes. Though with respect to them by this ? He who works during the day with even to these, I protest against the opinion which seems his hands, does not read in intervals of leisure for bis to be elsewhere entertained, that they are universal, or amusement, or the improvement of his mind-or the that slaves, in respect to them, might not well bear a exceptions are so very rare, as scarcely to need the comparison with the lowest laborious class of other being provided for. Of the many slaves whom I have countries. But certainly there is much dishonesty leadknown capable of reading, I have never known one to ing to petty thefts. lc leads, however, to nothing else. read any thing but the Bible, and this task they imposed They have no contracts or dealings which might be a on themselves as matter of duty. Of all methods of temptation to fraud, nor do I know that their characters religious instruction, however, this

, of reading for them have any tendency that way. They are restrained by selves, would be the most inefficient-their comprehen-| the constant, vigilant, and interested superintendence

which is exercised over them, from the commission of law from the outrages of violence. I answer, as with offences of greater magnitude-even if they were dis- respect to their lives, that they are protected by manposed to them—which I am satisfied they are not. ners, and their position. Who ever heard of such outNothing is so rarely heard of, as an atrocious crime rages being offered ? At least as seldom, I will venture committed by a slave; especially since they have worn to say, as in other communities of different forms of off the savage character which their progenitors brought polity. One reason doubtless may be, that often there with them from Africa. Their offences are confined is do disposition to resist. Another reason also may be, to petty depredations, principally for the gratification that there is little templation to such violence, as there of their appetites, and these for reasons already given, is so large a proportion of this class of females who set are chiefly confined to the property of their owner, little value on chastity, and afford easy gratification to which is most exposed to them. They could make no the passions of men. It might be supposed, from the use of a considerable booty, if they should obtain it. representations of some writers, that a slave holding It is plain that this is a less evil to society in its conse country were one wide stew for the indulgence of quences and example, than if committed by a freeman, unbridled lust. Particular instances of intemperate and who is master of his own time and actions. With refe- shameless debauchery are related, which may perhaps rence to society then, the offence is less in itself—and be true, and it is left to be inferred that this is the uni. may we not hope that it is less in the sight of God. A versal state of manners. Brules and shameless-deslave has no hope that by a course of integrity, he can bauchees there are in every country; we know that if materially elevate his condition in society, nor can his such things are related as general or characteristic, the offence materially depress it, or affect his nieans of representation is false. Who would argue from the support, or that of his family. Compared to the free existence of a Col. Chartres in England, or of some man, he has no character to establish or to lose. He individuals who might, perhaps, be named in other por. has not been exercised to self-government, and being tions of this country, of the horrid dissoluleness of without intellectual resources, can less resist the solici- manners occasioned by the want of the institution of tations of appetite. Theft in a freeman is a crime; in slavery. Yet the argument might be urged quite as a slave, it is a vice. I recollect to have heard it said, in fairly, and it really seems to me with a little more jusreference to some question of a slave's theft which was tice--for there such depravity is attended with much agitated in a court, "courts of justice have no more to more pernicious consequences. Yet let us not deny or do with a slave's stealing, than with his lying—that is extenuate the truth. It is true that in this respect the a matter for the domestic foram.” It was truly said morals of this class are very loose, (by no means so the theft of a slave is no offence against society. Com- universally so as is often supposed,) and that the paspare all the evils resulting from this, with the enormous sions of men of the superior caste, tempt and find gratiamount of vice, crime and depravity, which in an Euro- fication in the easy chastity of the females. This is pean, or one of our northern cities, disgusts the moral evil

, and to be remedied, if we can do so, without the feelings, and render life and property insecure. So with introduction of greater evil. But evil is incident to respect to his falsehood. I have never heard or observ- every condition of society, and as I have said, we have ed, that slaves have any peculiar proclivity to false- only to cousider in which institution it most predomihood, unless it be in denying, or concealing their own nates. offences, or those of their fellows. I have never heard Compare these prostitutes of our country, (if it is not of falsehood told by a slave for a malicious purpose. injustice to call them so,) and their condition with those Lies of vanity are sometimes told, as among the weak of other countries—the seventy thousand prostitutes of and ignorant of other conditions. Falsehood is not London, or of Paris, or the ten thousand of New York, attributed to an individual charged with an offence be or our other northern cities. Take the picture given of fore a court of justice, who pleads not guillyand cer- the first, from the author whom I have before quoted. Lainly the strong temptation to escape punishment, in “The laws and customs of England, conspire to sink the highest degree extenuates, if it does not excuse, this class of English women into a state of vice and mifalsehood told by a slave. If the object be to screen a sery, below that which necessarily belongs to their fellow slave, the act bears some semblance of fidelity,

condition. Hence, their extreme degradation, their and perhaps truth could not be cold without breach of troopers' oaths, their love of gin, their desperate reckconfidence. I know not how to characterize the false

lessness, and the shortness of their miserable lives." hood of a slave.

"English women of this class, or rather girls, for few It has often been said by the denouncers of slavery, so fast that soon there would be none left

, if a fresh

of them live to be women, die like sheep with the rot; that marriage does not exist among slaves. It is difficult to understand this, unless wilful falsehood were But a fresh supply is always obtained without the least

supply were not obtained equal 10 the number of deaths. intended. We know that marriages are contracted; trouble : seduction easily keeps pace with prostitution may be, and often are, solemnized with the forms usual or mortality. These that die, are, like factory children among other classes of society, and often faithfully ad- that die, instantly succeeded by new competitors for hered to during life. The law has not provided for misery and death." There is no hour of a summer's or making those marriages indissoluble, nor could it do so. a winter's night, in which there may not be found in If a man abandons his wife, being without property, the streets a ghasily wretch expiring under the double and being both property themselves, he cannot be re- tortures of disease and famine. Though less aggravaquired to maintain her. If he abandons his wife, and ted in its features, the picture of prostitution in New lives in a state of concubinage with another, the law York or Philadelphia would be of like character. cannot punish him for bigamy. It may perhaps be In such communities, the unmarried woman who meant that the chastity of wives is not protected by I becomes a mother, is an outcast from society and

though sentimentalists lament the hardship of the case, purity of manners, among the free females of the slave it is justly and necessarily so. She is cut off from the holding states. Such an imputation, however, and hope of useful and profitable employment, and driven made in coarse terms, we have never heard here-here by necessity to further vice. Her misery, and the where divorce was never known-where no court was hopelessness of retrieving, render her desperate, until ever polluted by an action for criminal conversation she sinks into every depth of depravity, and is prepared with a wife—where it is related rather as matter of trafor every crime that can contaminate and infest society. dition, not unmingled with wonder, that a Carolinian She has given birth to a human being, who, if it be so woman of education and family, proved false to her unfortunate as to survive its miserable infancy, is com- conjugal faith-an imputation deserving only of such monly educated to a like course of vice, depravity and reply as self-respect would forbid us to give, if respect crime.

for the author of it did not. And can it be doubted, Compare with this the female slave under similar cir- that this purity is caused by, and is a compensation for cumstances. She is not a less useful member of society the evils resulting from the existence of an enslaved than before. If shame be attached to her conduct, it class of more relaxed morals? is such shame as would be clsewhere felt for a venial It is mostly the warm passions of youth, which give impropriety. She has not impaired her means of sup- rise to licentious intercourse. But I do not hesitate to port, nor materially impaired her character, or lowered say, that the intercourse which takes place with enher station in society; she has done no great injury to slaved females, is less depraving in its effects, than herself

, or any other human being. Her offspring is when it is carried on with females of their own caste. not a burden, but an acquisition to her owner; his sup- In the first place, as like attracts like, that which is unport is provided for, and he is brought up to usefulness; like repels; and though the strength of passion be sufif the fruit of intercourse with a freeman, his condition ficient to overcome the repulsion, still the attraction is is, perhaps, raised somewhat above that of his mother. less. He feels that he is connecting himself with one Under these circumstances, with imperfect knowledge, of an inferior and servile caste, and that there is sometempted by the strongest of human passions-unre- thing of degradation in the act. The intercourse is strained by the motives which operate to restrain, but generally casual; he does not make her habitually an are so often found insufficient to restrain the conduct of associate, and is less likely to receive any laint from females elsewhere, can it be matter of surprise that she her habits and manners. He is less liable to those exshould so often yield to the temptation ? Is not the traordinary fascinations, with which worthless women evil less in itself, and in reference to society-much less sometimes entangle their victims, to the utter destrucin the sight of God and man? As was said of theft-tion of all principle, worth and vigor of character. The the want of chastity, which among females of other female of his own race offers greater allurements. The countries, is sometimes vice, sometimes crime-among haunts of vice often present a shew of elegance, and the free of our own, much more aggravated; among various luxury tempts the senses. They are made an slaves, hardly deserves a harsher term than that of habitual resort, and their inmates associate, till the weakness. I have heard of complaint made by a free general character receives a taint from the corrupted prostituie, of the greater countenance and indulgence atmosphere. Not only the practice is licentious, but shown by society towards colored persons of her pro- the understanding is sophisticated; the moral feelings fession, (aways regarded as of an inferior and servile are bewildered, and the boundaries of virtue and vice class, though individually free,) than to those of her confused. Where such licentiousness very extensively own complexion. The former readily obtain employ-prevails, society is rotten to the heart. ment; are even admitted into families, and treated with But is it a small compensation for the evils attending some degree of kindness and familiarity, while any ap- the relation of the sexes among the enslaved class, proach to intercourse with the latter is shunned as con that they have universally the opportunity of indulging lamination. The distinction is habitually made, and it the first instinct of nature, by forming matrimonial is founded on the unerring instinct of nature. The co-connexions? What painful restraint—what constant lored prostitute is, in fact, a far less contaminated and effort to struggle against the strongest impulses, are depraved being. Still many, in spite of temptation, habitually practised elsewhere, and by other classes ? do preserve a perfectly virtuous conduct, and I imagine And they must be practised, unless greater evils would it hardly ever entered into the mind of one of these, that be encountered. On the one side, all the evils of vice, she was likely to be forced from it by authority or with the miseries to which it leads-on the other, a violence.

marriage cursed and made hateful by want, the sufferIt may be asked, if we have no prostitutes from the ings of children, and agonizing apprehensions confree class of society among ourselves. I answer in no cerning their future fate. Is it a small good, that the assignable proportion. With general truth, it might slave is free from all this? He knows that his own be said, that there are none. When such a case occurs, subsistence is secure, and that his children will be in as it is among the rare evils of society. And apart from good a condition as himself. To a refined and intellecother and better reasons, which we believe to exist, it tual nature, it may not be difficult to practise the reis plain that it must be so, from the comparative absence straint of which I have spoken. But the reasoning of temptation. Our brothels, comparatively very few from such to the great mass of mankind, is most fallaand these should not be permitted to exist at all-are cious. To these, the supply of their natural and physifilled, for the most part, by importation from the cities cal wants, and the indulgence of the natural domestic of our confederate states, where slavery does not exist. affections, must, for the most part, afford the greatest In return for the benefits which they receive from our good of which they are capable. To the evils which slavery, along with tariffs, libels, opinions, moral, reli- sometimes attend their matrimonial connexions, arising gious, or political—they furnish us also with a supply from their looser morality, slaves, for obvious reasons, of thieves and prostitutes. Never, but in a single in-are comparatively insensible. I am no apologist of stance, have I heard of an imputation on the generall vice, nor would I extenuate the conduct of the profligate and unfeeling, who would violate the sanctity of replied—it is because they labor under a steiner comeven these engagements, and occasion the pain which pulsion. The laws interpose no obstacle to their rais such violations no doubt do often inflict. Yet such is ing their condition in society. 'Tis a great boon; but the truth and we cannot make it otherwise. We know, as to the great mass, they know that they never will be that a woman's having been before a mother, is very able to raise it--and it should seem not very important seldom indeed an objection to her being made a wife. in effect, whether it be the interdict of law, or imposed I know perfectly well how this will be regarded by a by the circumstances of the society. One in a thou: class of reasoners or declaimers, as imposing a character sand is successful. But does his success compensate of deeper horror on the whole system; but still, I will for the sufferings of the many who are tantalized, bassay, that if they are to be exposed to the evil, it is mercy fled, and tortured in vain attempts to attain a like rethat the sensibility to it should be blunted. Is it no sult? If the individual be conscious of intellectual compensation also for the vices incident to slavery, power, the suffering is greater. Even where success that they are, to a great degree, secured against the is apparently attained, he sometimes gains it but to temptation to greater crimes and more atrocious vices, die; or with all capacity to enjoy it, exhausted-worn and the miseries which attend them; against their own out in the struggle with fortune. If it be true that the disposition to indolence, and the profligacy which is African is an inferior variety of the human race, of les its common result?

elevated character, and more limited intellect, is it not But if they are subject to the vices, they have also desirable that the inferior laboring class should be the virtues of slaves. Fidelity--often proof against all made up of such, who will conform to their condition temptation, even death itself; an eminently cheerful without painful aspirations, and vain struggles ? and social temper; what the Bible imposes as a duty, The slave is certainly liable to be sold. But, perhaps, but which might seem an equivocal virtue in the code it may be questioned, whether this is a greater evil of modern morality-submission to constituted autho-than the liability of the laborer, in fully peopled counrity, and a disposition to be attached to, as well as to tries, to be dismissed by his employer, with the uncerrespect those whom they are taught to regard as supe- tainty of being able to obtain employment

, or the riors. They may have all the knowledge which will means of subsistence elsewhere. With us, the emmake them useful in the station in which God has been ployer cannot dismiss his laborer without providing pleased to place them, and may cultivate the virtues him with another employer. His means of subsistence which will render them acceptable to him. But what are secure, and this is a compensation for much. He has the slave of any country to do with heroic virtues, is also liable to be separated from wife or child—though liberal knowledge, or elegant accomplishments ? It is not more frequently, that I am aware of, than the exifor the master; arising out of his situation-imposed gency of their condition compels the separation of famion him as duty-dangerous and disgraceful if neg. lies among the laboring poor elsewhere; but from lected to compensate for this, by his own more asidu- native character and temperament, the separation is ous cultivation of the more generous virtues, and libe- much less severely felt. And it is one of the compenral attainments.

sations, that he may sustain these relations without It has been supposed one of the great evils of slavery, suffering a still severer penalty for the indulgence. that it affords the slave no opportunity of raising him- The love of liberty is a noble passion to have the self to a higher rank in society, and that he has, there-free, uncontrolled disposition of ourselves, our words fore, no inducement to meritorious exertion, or the cul- and actions. But alas! it is one in which we know tivation of his faculties. The indolence and careless-that a large portion of the human race can never be ness of the slave, and the less productive quality of his gratified. Ii is mockery, to say that the laborer any labor, are traced to the want of such excitement. The where has such disposition of himself; though there first compensation for this disadvantage, is his security. may be an approach to it in some peculiar, and those

, If he can rise no higher, he is just in the same degree perhaps, not the most desirable, states of society. But secured against the chances of falling lower. It has unless he be properly disciplined and prepared for its becn sometimes made a question whether it were better enjoyment, it is the most fatal boon that could be confor man to be freed from the perturbations of hope and ferred-fatal to himself and others. If slaves have less fear, or to be exposed to their vicissitudes. But I sup- freedom of action than other laborers, which I by po pose there could be little question with respect to a means admit, they are saved in a great degree from the situation, in which the fears must greatly predominate responsibility of self-government, and the evils spring. over the hopes. And such, I apprehend, to be the con- ing from their own perverse wills. Those who bave dition of the laboring poor in countries where slavery looked most closely into life, and know how great a does not exist. If not exposed to present suffering, portion of human misery is derived from these sources there is continual apprehension for the future for the undecided and wavering purpose, producing inefthemselves—for their children-of sickness and want, fectual exertion, or indolence with its thousand attendif not of actual starvation. They expect to improve ant evils—the wayward conduct-intemperance or pro, their circumstances! Would any person of ordinary Aigacy–will most appreciate this benefit

. The line of candor, say that there is one in a hundred of them, who a slave's duty is marked out with precision, and he has does not well know, that with all the exertion he can no choice but to follow it. He is saved the double diffimake, it is out of his power materially to improve his culty, first of determining the proper course for himself, circumstances? I speak not so much of menial ser- and then of summoning up the energy which will susvants, who are generally of a superior class, as of the tain him in pursuing it. agricultural and manufacturing laborers. They labor If some superior power should impose on the laboriwith no such view. It is the instinctive struggle to ous poor of any other country this

, as their unaltera: preserve existence--and when the superior efficiency of ble condition-you shall be saved írom the torturing iheir labor over that of our slaves is pointed out, as be- anxiety concerning your own future support, and that ing animated by a freeman's hopes, might it not well be of your children, which now pursues you through life,

and haunts you in death-you shall be under the ne-great mass of those born of the laboring poor; and it is cessity of regular and healthful, though not excessive for the maes, not for the exception, that the institulabor-in return, you shall have the ample supply of tions of society are to provide. Is it not better that the your natural wants-you may follow the instinct of na- character and intellect of the individual should be suitture in becoming parents, without apprehending that ed to the station which he is to occupy? Would you this supply will fail yourselves or your children-you do a benefit to the horse or the ox, by giving him a shall be supported and relieved in sickness, and in old cultivated understanding or fine feelings? So far as age wear out the remains of existence among familiar the mere laborer has the pride, the knowledge, or the scenes and accustomed associates, without being driven aspirations of a freeman, he is unfitted for his situation, to beg, or to resort to the hard and miserable charity of and must doubly feel its infelicity. If there are sordid, a work house-you shall of necessity be temperate, and servile, and laborious offices to be performed, is it not shall have neither the temptation nor opportunity to better that there should be sordid, servile, and labocommit great crimes, or practice the more destructive rious beings to perform them? If there were infallible vices-how inappreciable would the boon be thought! marks by which individuals of inferior intellect, and And is not this a very near approach to the condition of inferior character, could be selected at their birthour slaves ? The evils of their situation they but lightly would not the interests of society be served, and would feel

, and would hardly feel at all, if they were not sedu- not some sort of fitness seem to require, that they lously instructed into sensibility. Certain it is, that if should be selected for the inferior and servile offices? their fate were at the absolute disposal of a council of And if this race be generally marked by such inferiorithe most enlightened philanthropists in christendom, ty, is it not fit that they should fill them? with unlimited resources, they could place them in no

I am well aware that those whose aspirations are after situation so favorable to themselves, as that which they a state of society from which evil shall be banished, al present occupy. But whatever good there may be, or and who look in life for that which life will never afwhatever mitigation of evil, it is worse than valueless, ford, contemplate that all the offices of life may be because it is the result of slavery.

performed without contempt or degradation-all be I am aware, that however often answered, it is likely regarded as equally liberal, or equally respected. But to be repeated again and again-how can that institu- thcorists cannot control Nature and bend her to their tion be tolerable, by which a large class of society is views, and the inequality of which I have before spocut off from the hope of improvement in knowledge; ken, is deeply founded in Nature. The offices which to whom blows are not degrading; theft no more than employ knowledge and intellect, will always be regarda fault; falsehood and the want of chastity almost ed as more liberal than those which only require the venial, and in which a husband or parent looks with labor of the hands. When there is competition for cm. comparative indifference, on that which, to a freeman, ployment, he who gives it bestows a favor, and it will would be the dishonor of a wife or child?

be so received. He will assume superiority from the But why not, if it produces the greatest aggregate power of dismissing his laborers, and from fear of this, of good ? Sin and ignorance are only evils because the latter will practice deference, often amounting to they lead to misery. It is not our institution, but the servility. Such in time will become the established institution of nature, that in the progress of society a relation between the employer and the employed, the portion of it should be exposed to want, and the misery rich and the poor. If want be accompanied with sorwhich it brings, and therofore involved in ignorance, didness and squalor, though it be pitied, the pity will vice, and depravity. In anticipating some of the good, be mixed with some degree of contempt. If it lead to we also anticipate a portion of the evil of civilization. misery, and misery to vice, there will be disgust and But we have it in a mitigated form. The want and aversion. What is the essential character of slarery, the misery are unknown; the ignorance is less a mis- and in what does it differ from the sercitude of other fortune, because the being is not the guardian of him- countries ? If I should venture on a definition, I sell, and partly on account of that involuntary igno- should say that where a man is compelled to labor at rance, the vice is less vice-less hurtful to man, and the will of another, and to give him much the greater less displeasing to God.

portion of the product of his labor, there slarery exists ; There is something in this word slavery which and it is immaterial by what sort of compulsion the will seems to partake of the qualities of the insane root, of the laborer is subdued. It is what no human being and distempers the minds of men. That which would would do without some sort of compulsion. He canbe true in relation to one predicament, they misapply not be compelled to labor by blows. No, but what to another, to which it has no application at all. Some difference does it make, if you can inflict any other of the virtues of a freeman would be the vices of slaves. sort of torture which will be equally effectual in subduTo submit to a blow, would be degrading to a freeman, ing the will ? if you can starve him, or alarm him for because he is the protector of himself. It is not de- the subsistence of himself or his family? And is it not grading to a slave-neither is it to a priest or a woman. under this compulsion that the freeman labors ? I do And is it a misfortune that it should be so ? The free- not mean in every particular case, but in the general. man of other countries is compelled to submit to indig. Will any one be hardy enough to say that he is at his nities hardly more endurable than blows--indignities own disposal, or has the government of himself ? True, to make the sensitive feelings shrink, and the proud he may change his employer if he is dissatisfied with heart swell; and this very name of freeman gives them his conduct towards him ; but this is a privilege he double rancor. If when a man is born in Europe, it would in the majority of cases gladly abandon, and were certainly foreseen that he was destined to a life of render the connexion between them indissoluble. painful labor-to obscurity, contempt and privation- There is far less of the interest and attachment in his would it not be mercy that he should be reared in ig- relation to his employer, which so often exists between norance and apathy, and trained to the endurance of the master and the slave, and mitigates the condition the evils he must encounter? It is not certainly fore of the latter. An intelligent English traveller has chasecn as to any individual, but it is forcscen as to the racterized as the most iniserable and degraded of all

« السابقةمتابعة »