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ministration it is impossible to find men of the kind of experience that is needed at this crisis of the nation's career. The errors into which we fell in the early days pf the contest were the effect of want of experience ; and it would be but to provide for their repetition, were we to call a new Administration into existence. The people understand this, and hence the very general expression of opinion in favor of the reelection of President Lincoln, whose training through four most terrible years — years such as no other President ever knew — will have qualified him to carry on the Government daring a second term to the satisfaction of all unselfish men. Mr. Lincoln's honesty is beyond question, and we need an honest man at the head of the nation now more than ever. That the Rebels object to him is a recommendation in the eyes of loyal men. The substitution of a new man would not dispose them to submission, and they would expect to profit from that inevitable change of policy which would follow from a change of men. As to "the one-term principle," we never held it in much regard; and we are less disposed to approve it now than we should have been, had peace been maintained. Were the President elected for six or eight years, it might be wise to amend the Constitution so as to prevent the reelection of any man; but while the present arrangement shall exist, it would not be wise to insist upon a complete change of Government every four years. To hold out the Presidency
as a prize to be struggled for by new men at every national election is to increase the troubles of the country. Among the causes of the Civil War the ambition to be made President must be reckoned. Every politician has carried a term at the White House in his portfolio, as every French conscript carries a marshal's baton in his knapsack; and the disappointments of so many aspirants swelled the number of the disaffected to the proportions of an army, counting all who expected office as the consequence of this man's or that man's elevation to the Presidency. Were there no other reason for desiring the reelection of President Lincoln, the fact that it would be the first step toward a return to the rule that obtained during the first half - century of our national existence under the existing Constitution should suffice to make us all advocates of his nomination for a second term. That the Baltimore Convention will meet next month, and that it will place Mr. Lincoln once more before the American people as a candidate for their suffrages, are facts now as fully established as anything well can bo that depends upon the future; and that he will be reelected admits of no doubt. The popular voice designates him as the man of the time and the occasion, and the action of the Convention will be nothing beyond a formal process, that shall give regular expression to a public sentiment which is too strong to be denied, and which will be found of irresistible force.
REVIEWS AND LITERARY NOTICES.
Industrial Biography: Iron- Workers and Tool.)/..... By Samdel Smiles, Author of "Self-Help," "Brief Biographies," and "Life of George Stephenson." Boston: Ticknor & Fields.
The history of iron is the history of civilization. The rough, shapeless ore that lies hidden in the earth folds in its unlovely bosom such fate and fortune as the haughtier sheen of silver, gleam of gold, and sparkle of diamond may illustrate, but are wholly impoteut to create. Kising from his undisturbed repose of ages, the giant, unwieldy, swart, and huge of limb, bends slowly his brawny neck to the yoke of man, and at his bidding becomes a nimble servitor to do his will. Subtile as thought, rejoicing in power, no touch is too delicate for his perception, no service too mighty for his strength. Tales of faerie, feats of magic, pale before the simple story of his every-day labor, or find in his deeds the t-acta which they but faintly shadowed forth. And waiting upon his transformation, a tribe becomes a nation, a race of savages rises up philosophers, artists, gentlemen.
Commerce, science, warfare have their progress and their vicissitudes; but underneath them all, unnoted, it may be, or treated to a superficial and perhaps supercilious glance, yet mainspring and regulator of all, runs an iron thread, true thread of Fate, coiling around the limbs of man, and impeding all progress, till he shall have untwisted its Gordian knot, but bidding iii ni forward from strength to strength with each successive release. No romance of court or camp surpasses the romance of the forge. A blacksmith at his anvil seems to us a respectable, but not an eminently heroic person; yet, walking backward along the past by the light which he strikes from the glowing metal beneath his hand, we shall fancy ourselves to be walking in the true heroic age. lungs and warriors have brandished their swords right royally, and such splendor has flashed from Ezcalibur and Morglay that our dazzled eyes have scarcely discerned the brawny smith who not only stood in the twilight of the background and fashioned with skilful hand
the blade which radiates such light, but passed through all the hsnd, changing hut* into houses, houses into homes, and transforming into a garden by his skill the wilderness which had been rescued by the sword. Vigorous brains, clear eyes, sturdy anus have wrought out, not without blood, victories more potent, more permanent, more heroic, than those of the battle-field. Such books as this under consideration give us only materials for the great epic of iron, but with such materials we can make our own rhythm aud harmony. From the feeble beginning of the savage, rejoicing in the fortunate possession of two old nails, and deriving a sufficient income from letting them out to his neighbors for the purpose of boring holes, down to the true Thor's hammer, so tractable to the outer's hand that it can chip without break ing the end of an egg in a glass on the anvil, crack a nut without touching the kernel, or strike a blow often tons eighty times in a minute, we have a steady onward movement. Prejudice builds its solid breakwaters; ignorance, inability, clumsiness, and awkwardness raise such obstacles as they can; but the delay of a century is bui a moment. Slowly and surely the waters rise till they sweep away all obstacles, overtop all barriers, and plunge forward again with ever accelerating force. The record of iron is at once a record of our glory and of our humiliation,—a record of marvellous, inborn, God-given genius, reaching forth in manifold directions to compass most beneficent ends, but baffled, thwarted, fiercely and persistently resisted by obstinacy, blindness, and stupidity, and gaining its ends, if it gain them at all, only by address the most sagacious, courage the most invincible, and perseverance the most untiring. Every great advance in mechanical skill has been met by the determined hostility of men who fancied their craft to be in danger. An invention which enabled a hand of iron to do the work of fifty hands of flesh and blood was considered guilty of taking the bread from the thrice fifty mouths that depended on those hands' labor, and was not unfrequently visited with the punishment due to such guilt . No demonstrated fruitlessness of similar fears in the past served to allay fears for the future; no inefficiency of brute force permanently to stay the enterprise of the mind prevented brute force from making its futile and sometimes fatal attempts. It is no matter that increased facility of production has been attended by an increased demand for the product; it is no matter that ingenuity has never been held permanently back from its carefully conned plans ; there have not been wanting men, numerous, ignorant, and ignoble enough to collect in mobs, raze workshops, destroy machinery, chase away inventors, and fancy, that, so employed, they have been engaged in the work of self-protection.
It is such indirect lessons as may be learned from these and other statements that give this book its chief value. The interesting historical and mechanical information contained in its pages makes it indeed well worthy of perusal; yet for that alone we should not take especial pains to set it before the people. But its incidental teachings ought to be taken to heart by every man, and especially every mechanic, who has any ambition or conscience beyond the exigencies of bread and butter. Lack of ambition is not an American fault, but it is too often an ambition that regards irrelevant and factitious honors rather than those to which it may legitimately fl'.d laudably aspire. A mechanic should find in the excellence of his mechanism a greater reward and satisfaction than in the wearing of a badge of office which any fifth-rate lawyer or broken-down man-of-business with influential " friends " may obtain, and whose petty duties they may discharge quite as well as the first-rate mechanic. The mechanic who is master of his calling need yield to none. We would not have him like the ironmongers denounced by the old religious writer as " heathenish in their manners, pufled up with pride, and inflated with worldly prosperity " ; but we would have him mindful of his true dignity. In the importance of the results which he achieves, in the magnitude of the honors he may win, in the genius he may cmploy and the skill he may attain, no profession or occupation presents a more inviting field than his ; but it will yield fruits only to the good husbandman. Science . and art give up their treasures only to him who is capable of enthusiasm and devotion.
He alone who magnifies his office makes it honorable. Whether he work in marble, canvas, or iron, the man who is content simply to follow his occupation, and is not possessed by it, may be an artificer, but will not be an artist, nor ever wear the laurel on his brow. He should be so enamored of his calling as to court it for its own charms. Invention is a capricious mistress, and does not always bestow her favors on the most worthy. Men not a few have died in poverty, and left a golden harvest to their successors ; yet the race is often enough to the swift, and the battle to the strong, to justify men in striving after strength and swiftness, as well for the guerdon which they bring as for the jubilant consciousness which they impart. And this, at least, is sure: though merit may, by some rare mischance, be overlooked, demerit has no opportunity whatever to gain distinction. Sleight of hand cannot long pass muster for skill of hand. Unswerving integrity, unimpeachable sincerity, is the lesson constantly taught by the lives of these renowned mechanies. "The great secret," says one, "is to have the courage to be honest,—a spirit to purchase the best material, and the means and disposition to do justice to it in the manufacture." Another, remonstrated with for his high charges, which were declared to be six times more than the price his employers had before been paying for the same articles, could safely say, "That may be, but mine are more than six times better." A master of his profession is master of his employers. Maudslay's works, we are told, came to be regarded as a first-class school for mechanical engineers, the Oxford and Cambridge of mechanies; nor can Oxford and Cambridge men be any prouder of their connection with their colleges than distinguished engineers of their connection with this famous school of Maudslay. With such an esprit de carps what excellence have we not a right to expect t
We cannot forbear pointing out the Aids to Humility collected in this book from various quarters, and presented to the consideration of the nineteenth century. Onr boasted age of invention turns out, after all, to have been only gathering up what antiquity has let fall, — rediscovering and putting to practical account what the past discovered, but could not, or, with miscalled dignity, would not, turn to the uses of common life. Steam-carriages, hydraulic engines, diving-bells, which we have regarded with so much complacency as our peculiar property, worked their wonders in the teeming brain of an old monk who lived six hundred years ago. Printing, stereotypes, lithography, gunpowder, Colt's revolvers and Armstrong guns, Congreve rockets, coal-gas and chloroform, daguerreotypes, reaping-machines, and the electric telegraph are nothing new under the Miii. Hundreds of years ago the idea was born, but the world was too young to know its character or prize its service, and so the poor little bantling was left to shiver itself to death while the world stumbled on as aforetime. How many eras of birth there may have been we do not know, but it was reserved for our later age to receive the young stranger with open arms, and nourish his infant limbs to manly strength, llichly are we rewarded in the precision and power with which he performs our tasks, in Uie comfort with which he enriches, the beauty with which he adorns, and the knowledge with which he ennobles our daily life.
The Life and Times of John Huts; or, The Bohemian Reformation of the Fifteenth Century. By E. H. Gillett. 2 vols. Second Edition. Boston: Gould & Lincoln.
The style of Mr. Gillett is clear, manly, and discriminating. If, in respect of show, sparkle, nervous energy, verbal felicity, and picturesqueness, it is not equal to that of our chief American historians, yet it is not deficient in ease, grace, or vigor. He is almost always careful, always unambitious, always in good taste. To complain that the style is not equal to Mr. Motley's, simply on the ground that the book is large and the subject historical, is grossly unfair. Mr. Gillett has not been eager for a place as a writer; his story has more merit in the thing told than in the telling. Even with his want of German he has been thorough in the investigation of authorities: and if he writes without enthusiasm, his judgment carries the greater weight. As a scholar and an historian, as a man of candor and resources, his name is an ornament to the Presbyterian ministry, of which he is a member.
And yet the life of Huss is not adapted
to produce popular effect, to show to striking advantage the charm of elaborate style, or to lift the hero himself into that upper light where his commonest deeds are dazzling and fascinating. He bad not the acumen, the weight, the learning, the logical irresistibleness of Calvin; nor had he the great human sympathies, the touch of earthiness, yet not grossness, which made Luther so dear to his countrymen, and which have imprinted a cordial geniality on the whole Lutheran Church. John Huss, though a man of learning, the Rector of a great and powerful University, though a true friend, though a man of wide sympathies, though an eloquent preacher, and a most formidable enemy to the corruptions of the Romish Church, was yet a colorless character in comparison with some men who have become the objects of hero-worship. There are few of those grand bursts which will always justify Luther's reputation, nothing of that rich poetical vein of Luther's, finding its twofold course in music and in poetry: Huss was comparatively dry, and unenriched by those overflowings of a deep inner nature. He is, therefore, rather the exponent of an age than a brilliant mark, — rather a type than a great, restless, creative power. His life was almost too saintly to be interesting in the popular sense; i-nd although he does emerge above his age, yet it is not as the advocate of an idea, as Luther was, nor of a great system, as Calvin was, nor as a man fearless of kings and queens, as Knoz was; his life, rather, was a continued protest against sin in the high places of the Church. Though in him there appear glimpses of a clearer doctrine than that of his age, yet they do not come to a full expression; it is the pride of pontiffs, the debaucheries of priests, the grasp after place and power and wealth by those who claim to follow the meek and holy One, which provoke his fiercest invective.
Mr. Gillett has, therefore, done a good service in subordinating the story of John Hnss to the history of his age. His work is strictly entitled, "The Bohemian Reformation of the Fifteenth Centnry." That period has heretofore been almost a blank in our ecclesiastical records. The blank is now filled. It was a period of great beginnings. Germany was silent then; but Wycliffe in England, and Huss, with his predecessors, Waldhauser, Milicz, and Peter of Dresden, in Bohemia, were even then causing the Papal power, rent as it was with its internal dissensions, to tremble as before approaching death.
The story of that impotent rage which sought to purchase life and safety for the Romish Church, by the murder of Hubs and of Jerome of Prague is instructive, if it is not pleasing. The truth was too true to be spoken. Never has the Church of Rome, in its inquisitorial madness, been so blinded with fury and passion as then. Weakened by internal feuds, with two Popes struggling and hurling anathemas at each other, and with a priesthood at its lowest point, not of ignorance, but of carnality, it seemed in peril of utter extinction. Its own boldest fmd ablest men were among its most outspoken accusers; and no words stronger or more cutting were spoken by Huss than by Gerson and Clemangis. But Huss committed the common mistake of reformers. He put himself outside of the body to be reformed. He allowed his spirit to fret against the evils of his times 80 madly that he would fain have put himself outside of the circumstances of his age. This wiser men than he, men no less ardent, but more calculating, never would do. In the city of Constance itself, during the sittings of the great Council which condemned Huss to death, sermons were preached more bitterly reproachful of the pride of the Pontiffs and the corruption of the Church than the words of any of the men who put themselves beyoud its pale, and addressed it as "your Church," instead of speaking of it as "ours." And while the dignitaries of that corrupt body dared not lay a finger upon their more pure, prophetic, and sharply accusing brethren, they made men like Huss and Jerome of Prague the doubly burdened and tortured victims of their rage.
Much of the interest of these volumes is owing to the prominence given to Wyelifie, and his contemporaneous work in England. It is strange, indeed, that in those early days, before Europe was crossed with its net-works, not of railways, but of post-roads even, the land which inclosed the fountains that fed the Elbe, eight hundred miles above Hamburg, was closely bound to that distant islnnd, four hundred miles beyond Hamburg, on the western side of the German Ocean. But a
royal marriage in England had united that kingdom to Bohemia, and Wycliffe's name was a household word in the lecture-rooms of Prague, and YVycliffe's books were well worn in its libraries. The great work ot preparation, the preliminary stirring-up of men's minds, by both of these great reformers, is hardly realized by us. But words had been spoken which could not die in a hundred years, and the public temper had been thrown into a glow which could not cool in a century. The " Morning Star of the Reformation" found its twin lighting up the dark ravines of Bohemia, and when they twain arose the day had begun to break. The Reformation did not begin with Luther. The elements had been made plastic to his touch; all was ready for his skilful hand to mould them into the symmetry of the Great Reformation. The armies of the Lord had enlisted man by man before he came; it was for his clarion blast to marshal them in companies and battalions, and lead them to the battle. We must again thank Mr. Gillett for his timely, serviceable book. It is never unprofitable to look back and see who have kept the sacred fire of Christianity burning when it seemed in danger of extinguishment. And in that fifteenth century its flames certainly burned low. Whenever the Church is on the side of aristocratic power, whenever it is a conservative and not a radical and progressive force in an evil age, when the forces of Sauui are in power, the men are truly worthy of immortality who go out to meet death in behalf of Christ and the religion of meekness and purity and universal love. Such was John Huss. He ought never to have suffered himself to be driven from the Church, and when he did so, he committed the unceasing mistake of reformers, among whom Wesley and Zinzendorf stand as the two marked exceptions; but for rectitude, zeal, and a thorough consecration to the great interests of Christ, he merits an even more sumptuous memorial than this excellent book.
Bordello, Straffbrd, Christmat-En and Easter-Day. By Robert Browning. Boston: Ticknor & Fields.
Ix his dedication to the new edition of "Bordello," Mr. Browning says,—" I lately