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England and on the Continent at this time? Upon my conscience, and judging by St. John's rule, I think it is a special spirit of the devil — and a very vulgar devil too !
Your modern political economists say that it is a principle in their science — that all things find their level; — which I deny; and say, on the contrary, that the true principle is, that all things are finding their level - like water in a storm.
May 18. 1833.
GERMAN. – GOETHE. — GOD'S PROVI
DENCE. – MAN'S FREEDOM. GERMAN is inferior to English in modifications of expression of the affections, but superior to it in modifications of expression of all objects of the senses.
Goethe's small lyrics are delightful. He showed good taste in not attempting to
imitate Shakspeare's Witches, which are threefold, — Fates, Furies, and earthly Hags o' the caldron.
Man does not move in cycles, though nature does. Man's course is like that of an arrow; for the portion of the great cometary ellipse which he occupies is no more than a needle's length to a mile.
In natural history, God's freedom is shown in the law of necessity. In moral history, God's necessity or providence is shown in man's freedom.
June 8. 1833.
DOM MIGUEL AND DOM PEDRO. - WORK
ING TO BETTER ONE'S CONDITION. – NEGRO EMANCIPATION. – FOX AND PITT. - REVOLUTION.
THERE can be no doubt of the gross violations of strict neutrality by this government in the Portuguese affair; but I wish the Tories had left the matter alone, and not given room to the people to associate them with that scoundrei Dom Miguel. You can never interest the common herd in the abstract question ; with them, it is a mere quarrel between the men; and though Pedro is a very doubtful character, he is not so bad as his brother; and, besides, we are naturally interested for the girl.
It is very strange that men who make light of the direct doctrines of the Scriptures, and turn up their noses at the recommendation of a line of conduct suggested by religious truth, will nevertheless stake the tranquillity of an empire, the lives and properties of millions of men and women, on the faith of a maxim of modern political economy! And this, too, of a maxim true only, if at all, of England or a part of England, or some other country; - namely, that the desire of bettering their condition will induce men to Jabour even more abundantly and profitably than servile compulsion, - to which maxim the past history and present state of all Asia and Africa give the lie. Nay, even in England at this day, every man in Manchester, Birmingham, and in other great manufacturing towns, knows that the most skilful artisans, who may earn high wages at pleasure, are constantly in the habit of working but a few days in the week, and of idling the rest. I believe St. Monday is very well kept by the workmen in London. I think, tailors will not work at all on that day; the printers, as I have heard, not till the afternoon; and so on. The love of indolence is universal, or next to it.
Must not the ministerial plan for the West Indies lead necessarily to a change of property, either by force or dereliction? I can't see any way of escaping it.
You are always talking of the rights of the negroes. As a rhetorical mode of stimulating the people of England here, I do not object; but I utterly condemn your frantic
practice of declaiming about their rights to the blacks themselves. They ought to be forcibly reminded of the state in which their brethren in Africa still are, and taught to be thankful for the providence which has placed them within reach of the means of grace. I know no right except such as flows from righteousness; and as every Christian believes his righteousness to be imputed, so must his right be an imputed right too. It must flow out of a duty, and it is under that name that the process of Humanization ought to begin and to be conducted throughout.
Thirty years ago, and more, Pitt availed himself, with great political dexterity, of the apprehension, which Burke and the conduct of some of the clubs in London had excited, and endeavoured to inspire into the nation a panic of property. Fox, instead of exposing the absurdity of this by showing the real numbers and contemptible weakness of the disaffected, fell into Pitt's trap, and was mad enough to exaggerate even Pitt's surmises.