« ПредишнаНапред »
THE ADOPTED SON OF AMERICA.
BY AN AMERICAN.
« Such is the patriot's boast, where'er we roam,
TWO VOLUMES IN ONE.
PUBLISHED BY DANIEL STEELE AND SON.
TAE sun bad just completed his daily course, bnt his last rays, dimly flitting on the expanded sheet of water that formed the western boundary of our horizon, displayed a. relief of light and shade, unrivaled in the best designations of art. The day bad been warm, uucomfortably so; bot a rising breeze restored the elasticity of the air, and revived the vigour of animated creation. The milk-imaid sang blithe. ly, as she poised her milk-paiis. The plough-voy whistled as he drove the cattle to the watering-place. My host bustled in his farm yard; the good lady of the house was occur pied with her children, and I seated myself in the piazza, enjoying the luxury of solitude, amidst the enlivened scenes of rural peace and plenty.
I was aroused from a deep abstractive fit of meditation, by the hoarse voice of our honest neighbour Noxbury, who.. with a pipe in his mouth, was sitting not three paces distance from me."
• Bless me!' he cried, taking his pipe in his band, 'what can thus so entirely occupy your mind ? Here have I been this half hour endeavoring to attract your attention, but I could not obtain even so mucb as a nod of recognition.'
"Oh, your servant, M:. Noxbury; I beg pardun, buliny mind was indeed inuch occupied. My publisher has see; a me for a prefare,
• A preface! Why, then, you really not be deem.' your manuscripi ?!
se there not many living literary character of Ame.
"You surprise me, sir; and what should prevent my publishing it ?
• Fate, my friend, fate, that destined your birth on the wrong side of the Allantic. Are you not an American ? Can you, then, hope to vie with a native of Europe ?'
• You provoke my patience, Mr. Noxbury. Am I not a descendant of those same Europeans, whom you extol so highly
• And so are all Americans, Canadians, Nova Scotians, New Brunswickers, Yankees, &c. They all doubtless derive their descent from the natives of Europe ; yet whoev. er heard of a Shakespeare, a Racine, a Tasso, a Milton, a Corneille, a Hume, a Robertson, an Addison, not to mention tbe immortal geniuses of the present day; who ever heard of one of those being born in America ? And the best judges allow that the human race degenerates in America.'
Great God! Can this be borne with patience ? Can I who feel that vital spark, that emanation from the Deity,
first breathed into man at his creation, raising me above all materiality, and bidding me, by the divine pursuit of knowledge, to imitate and follow in the paths of superior intelli. gences ? Can it be told, that this divine emanation is cunfioed to one particular spot of the earth? Mr. Noxbury, compare the rivers, the mountains, the lakes, and the plains of your native country, compare them with the stupendous works of Nature ever present in Ainerica, and then say, can mau le tbe only growib chat dwindles here ? Oh, pray descend from the clouds, my young friend,'" mortly neighbour, laughing. •It would be too faEn for me to follow you there. Ani now
-fcommon sense, can the litera.
ture of America be compared with that of Europe ?' and he esultingly laid ar, empbasis on the last sentence.
• No sir. I acknowledge in that respect, our present inferiority. The school-boy condivg over his lesson, cannot in acquirements be compared with his preceptor ; but may be not in the course of years, vie even with his teacher?-America is young, but is fast verging towards maturity; and the country tbat in its infancy produced a WASHINGTON, and a Franklin, may in its riper years, become a luminary, whose effulgence shall extend to all parts of the globe.'
And my young friend here, is to be the instrument to bring about this consummation devoutly to-be wished.?!
•Mistake me not, Mr. Noxbury. I am far from having the vanity to imagine my talents equal to those of many of my countrymen in all parts of North America. But still may I not endeavour to follow in the path of knowledge, and imitate, though at a humble distance, those great geniuses who have gone before us, whose mortal remains now lie mouldering in the dust, but who bave left us. transcripts of their minds, that will defy the power of the destroyer time, as long as any parts of our globe shall retain traces of civiligation.'
* And so'my young enthusiast, instead of devoting your time to some more lucrative employment, wherein, with proper industry, you might acquire a sufficiency of that desideralumn of life, that magnet of attraction, casb, you mean to sacrifice all your powers of exertion to study, and authorship, for the chimerical prospect of at length obiaining a niche in the temple of renown. ?
If sucb were my design, sir, ny choice might not be deem. ed singular. Even in Ainerica, are there not many living persons wbo are proofs, that tbe literary character of Ame