Abbildungen der Seite
PDF
EPUB

paid to the beard. The same is true of the Romans. They allowed The beard to grow freely, and seldom cut it. Ancient coins abound in heaās and busts adorned with beards The statues of the gods are seldom without them. I see now before me a sketch of the statue of old Oceanus. There sits the old man on the waves of the sea, with long flowing locks and gently curling beard. Then there is Neptone, with Amphitrite by his side, taking a ride on the sea in a sea-shell drawn by marine horses. He sports a beard that would be considered the height of fashion in Chestnut street or Broadway. So, too, the priests of the Greek and Roman religions are generally represented with long, full-grown beards. This was the role. Persons destitute of it were out of fashion or behind the age. To be beardless was regarded as a great misfortune. The color most esteemed was yellowish or light brown. In this respect their taste offers quite a contrast with that of our own age.

We would hardly bestow our preference on the yellow, red or light brown; rather is the dark or black preferred ; so much so, indeed, that our newspapers abound in advertisements of the best hairdye, capable of converting the light or red head or beard into any desirable color.

The testimony now adduced of remote antiquity-o say of the three thousand years previous to the coming of Christ-undoubtedly establishes the fact that beards were worn, whether for ornament or utility, or both, we cannot stop to inquire. The testimony of modern times tends in the same direction—the fashion during the first centuries of the present era, harmonizing most beautifully with that of the most remote ages. Though sacred history is silent as to the personal appearance of our Saviour, we may nevertheless suppose that in this respect He conformed to the custom of the times, and allowed his beard to grow. So, too, He almost invariably appears in the many and various representations, which pretend to give us some idea of His personal appearance. Neither are we permitted even for a moment to suppose that the apostles cut their beards. It is not at all probable that razors, razor-strops, shaving-soap, &c, constituied any part of their plain, unassuming toilet. To divest them of the beard, would, methinks, detract from the dignified, majestic appearance we are so fond of ascribing to them. The Church Fathers did of course not try to improve on nature, and thankfully wore what the Creator had intended them to wear. I can very easily conceive that St. Augustine, for instance, looked very much as be is portrayed in Dr. Schaff 's “ Life and Labors of St. Augustine " That he could be desti. tute of that graceful beard, is difficult to believe. Through the middle ages, the same dignified custom was observed. Near the table on which I write hangs a portrait of John Huss, with bair short, beard long To my right, a portrait of Jerome of Prague, with hair curli::g over his shoulders, and beard descending low on the breast. Then we come to the Reformers. There is Luther, smoothly shaven. This may have been his general appearance, but he also saw the day when he wrote to a friend that he was- comam et barbam nutriens"--cultivating his bair and beard. Zuingli also cut his beard, because be, like Luther, did not so closely adhere to the customs of former ages. But there is Johu Calvin ;

be seems to bave known what beards were for, and to bave en. oyed the full benefit of one. How long and well-arranged his beard

looks! Melanchthon, the mild, amiable Melanchibon, is not as closely shaven as Luther and Zuingli, nor has he the long beard of Calvin. He mediates between them.* If these lithographs are true portraits-if they give us the truth of history, and these venerable reformers be allowed to vote for or against the beard, taking their practice as an express on of their sentiments on this subject, we would have four in favor of, and two against the beard.

Here we must leave this subject. Let no one suppose, however, that we attach as much importance to the beard as the ancients did. We do not.

On the contrary, we, in our day, like to see a man's face unveiled and free ; for through his face his soul doth often shine.

* This he did also in other and loftier matters, namely: between the two divorging tendepcies of the Reformation ; so tbat it is even now difficult to decide to which side of those movements he most belonged. He was evidently Lutheran by position, but Reformed in faith and spirit. He was in the Reformation what Henry Clay was in the polities of our country. Our author truly and forcibly intimates that he represents this conservatism oven in the character of his beard It is a question, however, whether a little more decision would not have given much inore force to the life and labors of Melanchthon; and it is a question in like manner. whether a full beard. or none at all, would not bave improved his personal appearance Our taste is decidedly in favor of a full beard or a clean shave. Wo mean, of course, a full grown beard below the mouth, on the chin, to which a beard properly belongeth : ; as to the hirsute appendage on the upper lin, we are not so favorably inclined thereto, seeing that nature itself teacherb the inconvenience thereof-physically, in eating, intellectually io speaking, and musically in singing.-Editoe

SONG OF THE SILENT LAND.

TRANSLATED FROM THE GERMAN OF SALIS, BY LONGFELLOW.

Into the Silent Land !
Ah! who shall lead us thither?
Clouds in the evening sky more darkly gathe
And shattered wrecks lie thicker on the strand.
Who leads us with a gentle hand
Thither, O Tbither,
Into the Silent Land ?
Into the Silent Land !
To you, ye boundless regions
Of all perfection! Tender morning-visions
Of beauteous souls! The Future's pledge and band!
Who in Life's battle firm doth stand
Shall bear Hope's tender blossoms
Into the Silent Land !
O Land! 0 Land!
For all the broken-hearted
The mildest herald by our fate allotted
Beckons, and with inverted torch doth stand
To lead us with a gentie hand
Into the land of the great departed,
Into the Silent Land !

APPLES OF GOLD.-N0. IV.

BY

ECLECTICUS.

ON TRU T II. The study of truth is perpetually joined with the love of virtue ; for there is no virtue which derives not its original from truih ; as, on the contrary, there is no vice which was not its beginning from a lie. Truth is the foundation of all knowledge, and the cement of all society. Whether in or out of fashion, it is the measure of knowledge and the business of the understanding. Whatsoever is beside that—though authorized by consent, is nothing but ignorance or something worse.

What is truth ? 'said jeering Pilate, and did not waii for an answer. Some there are who delight in levily, and think it slavery to fix their belief, affecting free will in thinking as well as acting; and though the ancient sects of philosophers, who were free-thinkers are gone, yet their remain certain wits who show in their discourses the same vein, but with less blood. It is not only the dilliculty and labor in finding truth, nor yet that when found it tyrannizes over the mind, that bring lies juto favor; Lut it is a natural though corrupt love of falsehood itself One of the later school of Greece is perplexed in examining this matter, to think why men should love lies, which neither give pleasure, as the fictions of the poets, nor profit as the false statements of tradesmen, but should love them apparently for their own sake. It is hard to tell this same truth is a plain thing; it is an open day-light, which shows not the processions and nummeries, and triumplis of the world, half so stately and daintily, as candle-lights do. Truth may perhaps be rated as a pearl which appears best by day, but it will not rise in general esteem to the value of a diuinond, which shows best in varied lights. It is to be lamented that truth itself will attract little attention and less esteem, until it be amalgamated with some party, persuasion or sect. Unmixed and unadulterated, it too often proves as unfit for currency as pure gold for circulation. The mixture of a lie would seem to add pleasure to the draught. Though the temple of truth is built of stones of crystal, yet, inasmuch as men have been concerned in rearing it, it has been consolidated by a cement composed of baser materials. Does any man doubt that if vain opinions, flattering hopes, false valuations, baseless imaginings and similar fantasies were removed, it wonld leave the minds of most men poor, sirunken things, full of melancholy, indisposition and dissatisfaction.

Truth, says Milton, came into the world with her Divine Master, and was a perfect shape most glorious to look on ; but when he ascended, and his apostles after him were laid asleep, then straight arose a wicked race of deceivers, who, (as the story goes of the Egyptian Typ hon, with his conspirators, how they dealt with the good Osiris) took the virgin truth, hewed her lovely form into a thousand pieces, and scattered them to the four winds.

One of the fathers called Poesy, with great sererity, vin um dæmonum, because it fills the imagination, and yet it is only with the shadow of a

lie. But it is a mistake to suppose the poet does not know truth by sight, quite as well as the philosopher. He must; for he is ever beholding her in the mirrors of nature. The difference is, that the poet is satisfied with worshipping her reflected image, while the philosopher traces her out and follows her to her remote abode, between cause and consequence. The one loves and makes love to truth; the other esteems and weds her.

Truth, which only judges itself, teaches that investigation which is the wooing of truth, the kuowledge of tr th, which is the presence of it in all its beanty ; and the belief of truth, which is the enjoying of it, is the surereign good of human nature. The first creation of God, in the beginning, was the light of sense, the last, was the light of reason; and his Sabbath-work ever since, is the illumination of his spirit which is the light of the soul, First : He breathed light ipon the face of matter or chaos; then lle breathed light into the face of man; and still he breathes and inspires light into the hearts of his chosen

Truth, by whomsoever spoken, comes from God. It is in short a divine essence. The greatest friend of truth is time; her greatest enemy is prejudice; and her constant companion is humility. The poet Lucretius, who adorned his sect that was otherwise inferior to the rest, says excellently well: "It is a pleasure to stand upon the shore and view ships tossing upon the heaving sea-to stand in the window of a castle and see a battle wayed below; but no pleasure is comparable to standing upon the vantage ground of truth (a height uncommanded, where the air is always clear and serene) and beholding the errors, the wa derings, the mists and tempesis in the vale far beneath ;” and so, iudeed, it is, if the prospect be viewed with pity and not with pride. Ceriainly it is heaven upon earth, to bave the mind move in charity, rest in Providence, and turn upon the poles of truth.

The most natural beauty in the world is honesty and moral truth ; for all beauty is truth. True features inake the beauty of a face and true proportions the beauty of architecture; as true measures that of harmony and mus c.

Oh how much more doth beanty beanteous seem,

By that sweet ornament wbich truih doti give!
The rose looks fair, but fairer we it teem,

For that sweet odor which doth in it live, To pass from theological and philosophical truth to the truth of civil business, it will be acknowledged even by those who practice it not, that clear and round dealing is the honor of man's nature, and that the mixture of falsehood, is like alloy in gold and silver, which may make the metal work the better, but adulterates it nevertheless. For these winding and crooked courses are the progress of the serpent, which goes basely upon the belly and not bravely upon the feet. There is no vice that so covers a man with shame, as to be found false and perfidious; and therefore Moniague says finely, when giving the reason why the lie should be such a disgrace and the charge of it so odious: “ If it be well weighed, to say that a man lies, is as much as to say, he is brave towards God, and a coward to men; for a lie faces God and shrinks from man." Surely the wickedness of falsehood and breach of faith cannot be more forcibly expressed than in the declaration, that it shall be the last peal to call the judgments of God upon the generations of men; it being foretold that wben Christ shall come, he will not find "faith upon the earth."

HIDDEN TOIL.

BY THE EDITOR.

Once a great author wrote a learned work,
The printer privted it; and then he took
The sheets and with them to the binder went;
The binder bound it, and put on his name.
But see! he had in his employ a boy
Who made the paste !— but not the justice had
To let the world know what the boy had done.
Thus paught was known of himn without whose help
The Author's book could never, never, have been made.
'Tis an ungrateful world in which we live;
And there is many a little service done
For which no thanks are paid. There's many a stroke
Yes, many a weary little stroke, in secret made,
And made in earnest too, and made with tears,
That is not kindly counted e'en by those
Upon whose hearth of joy it casts its little chip!
A thousand little services make up
The vasty sum of good which those enjoy
Whom better fortune bath not doomed to toil !
These come not in the count of gratitude,
Because they are so small; e'en as the drop
Of dew, that makes the blade of grass more green,
Doth not arrest the separate view of him,
Who careless o'er the summer landscape looks.
But there's an Eye that sees the pebble small,
E'en as the mighty world; and He rewards
The widow's mite e'en as the gift which builds
A cathedral-rewards the little and the great.
uh, tbiuk of this, ye served ! Oh, think of this,
Ye servers, and be glad. Look up in hope !
The day of recompense will surely come.
Forgive the muse—'tis but a little thought
Crept into song ; I gave it as it came.
To some, if well applied, it brings reproof;
To others cunsolation rich and sweet.

THE PEACOCK.
I, glorying in my tail's extended pride,

See my foul legs, and then I shrink out-right:
So shrinks a human soul, that has descried

Its baseness mid vainglorious self-delight.

« ZurückWeiter »