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4. In addition to the parties already named, Giovanni Miani, a Venetian by birth, formerly resident in Chartum, set out in 1859, from France, to explore the sources of the Nile, proceeding southward from Chartum. His party was broken up by disagreement of the members, but subsequently he is said to have gained the confidence of the Viceroy of Egypt, and may yet accomplish something.

5. The Emperor of the French is said to have furnished the means for a French expedition over nearly the same route. Mr. G. Lejean, a former traveler in Turkey, set out early in 1860 for Chartum, from whence he hoped to go south to the Victoria Nyanza.

6. Karl von der Decken, who had planned to go inward from Zanzibar with Dr. Roscher, to Lake Nyassa, still hopes to make the journey, although detained in consequence of Dr. Roscher's death.

As a review of our present knowledge, it may be said that the recent explorations have entirely removed the old notions that the continent of Africa is only an elevated plateau. There is upon the east, as well as upon the west, a coast range of mountains, and between them, inland, there is a very marked depression, in which lie several large fresh lakes. The probable existence of such a depression was suggested by Sir Roderick Murchison, in his Anniversary Address to the Geo. graphical Society in 1852. One of these lakes, Ngami, is well known. A second, Dr. Livingstone has recently brought to our knowledge with some definiteness, the Schirwa. Two others we begin to feel certain about, Nyassa and Tanganika. The new discovery in the north, Victoria Nyanza, toward which we look with most eager curiosity.


ΠΟΙΟΝ οικον οικοδομηςετε μοι ; Acts vii, 49.

WHEN that Christian soldier, General Havelock, was in India, he held a prayer meeting with his soldiers in the Shivey Dagoon pagoda, and let the idols hold the candles for the service. It was the best use ever made of

shrine. But if his purpose had been to establish a permanent place of Christian worship, he would have treated the Shivey Dagoon to a thorough transformation. An idol temple does not offer the most convenient forms for Christian use; a truism which might well be based on the experience of the Romans of the fifth century-for after Alaric had desolated the pagan temples of the metropolis, and the Christians began to occupy them, they found those unhallowed structures required not pious lustrations alone, but architectural readjustments as well, to fit them for the abode of the true God. The history of architecture from that day to this does not show however, a complete renovation of the art to adapt it to the wants of a purer faith. The transition of pagan types into Christian was never a finished process. Heathen art built the primitive basilica, and is perpetuated to our own day in the abbeys and cathedrals of the middle ages. Even the principal churches of England, and many of our finest structures at home, adhere to the rubrics of olden time, and arrange themselves in forms well enough adapted to the ostentation of catholicism, but too cumbrous for the simpler service of the protestant faith. And as we say of the idol temple, so of the massive and ornate cathedral, architecture can furnish us, and ought, with edifices more suitable for the worship of God and for the preaching of his word. The magnificent memorials of religious art, left by the passing ages to be the wonder of Christendom and the home of its faith, have well nigh completed their mission. They are to our blind admiration not so much houses of worship, as houses to be worshiped. They remain monuments to the genius and the lavish outlay of their builders. To perpetuate such temples of art, it would seem, must strike a heavy blow at the speedy diffusion of the gospel among the masses. They could neither express the simple faith of the people, nor afford them the readiest access to the preached word.


It is a principle laid down by Sir H. Wotton-“Well building hath three conditions; Commodity, Firmness, and Delight.” Commodity is, and of right ought to be, chief; Firmness support it; Delight enrich it. The order is too often reversed, and the last is made first. Delight is pushed forward to the front, and Commodity must walk humbly after—if indeed it goes at all. The popular taste demands style and finish; if the substantial convenience of the worshiper stand in the way, that is of less moment and may be sacrificed. “It must be confessed,” says a recent English writer, “ that our ancestors did not offer much temptation to people to come to church by the comforts they provided for them when they got there.” The admission may be endorsed for this side of the Atlantic, and for a later date. Have we learned yet, from art, or even from experience, how to adjust the interior of the church edifice to the simple wants of the worshiper? A model church, every way adapted to its spiritual uses, and that too irrespective of size, cost, material, or architectural style, is it not an event hitherto rarely chronicled in the records of the building craft? If the signs of the times showed a genuine advance of the religious community in that direction, if there were a manifest convergence of Christian art upon that final result, then we could possess our souls in patience, and submissively await the lingering millennium of meeting-houses. There are churches indeed a few-whose interior arrangements do approach the true ideal. They are exceptions and very rare exceptions. Beyond the principles of our fathers, there is little progress in the general routine of church building. Sometimes the gnomon on the dial has shown a retrograde movement. There is a fine freestone edifice now receiving the last touches of decoration in a neighboring city, in which the builder has readmitted that awkward relic of antiquity, the square pew. We can only protest. What right has any architect or building committee to seat a part of the congrega*tion so that the preacher must level his logic at the backs of their heads?

The purpose of a church edifice-let us hold our minds to a definite conception of that. What is a church edifice? Generically, a house of worship; specifically, a house of prayer, praise, and scripture exposition. Now, can the whole interior be so arranged and fitted as to facilitate each and all of these parts of the service? If so, it cannot be wise to build in favor of one to the detriment of another; it would be absolutely wanton to finish and furnish with an impartial disregard to them all. We need not therefore try to adapt the stately cathedral to the wants of our faith. Simple protestantism would wander a stranger in the solemn gloom of column and aisle, transept, chapel, and dome. It could find for itself there no abiding-place. Those very magnitudes, under which it seeks a home, conspire to repel. For what is the mission of religion? Is it only a grand liturgy? The world has been long enough overawed by that. What the world needs now is, to be illuminated by the radiance of her teaching—not to be overshadowed by the cloud of her presence. “Go, preach the gospel,”—that is her errand; preach it-preach it; not simply pray over it, and chant Te Deum to it, and burn incense around it, and dramatize it with pictures and robes, and traverse and countermarch it with processions. Preach it! Unfold it to the race. Interpret, explain, apply. Make it clear, as the limpid waters. Make it vital, as the breathing air. Make it cheering, as the sunlight. Make it dazzling as heaven, and grand as eternity. Make men know it, and feel it, and love it. You cannot overestimate the preaching of the word. Among the means and appliances of the system, its founder made this instrumentality the chief. “Go, preach the gospel.” “Faith cometh by hearing,”_" and how shall they hear without a preacher ?”

This divinely appointed order we acknowledge and act upon. Where the gospel is lacking, we send the preacher. The preacher enforces the truth. The truth is the forerunner of the Spirit. The Spirit converts, and gathers the converted into a church. The church educates her young men, makes them preachers, puts them in other destitute places with the same original commision, “Go, preach.” At each of these points the process is repeated. It is by preaching, Christianity propagates itself. The preaching of the word is the seed; the gathered church is the ripe fruit, and contains in itself organically the germs for future ripe and seed bearing churches. In accordance with this fact, thus runs the apostolic charge to the first bishop of Ephesus: “Preach the word; be instant in season, out of season; reprove, rebuke, exhort, with all long suffering and doctrine.” That is the prime business of the minister ordained; that is the chief purpose of the church built. And the same energetic pen put the case thus to the church whose orthodoxy then gave no sign that her future career would be marked by the sinking of the preacher in the priest ; "whosoever shall call upon the name of the Lord, shall be saved; how shall they call on him in whom they have not believed ? and how shall they believe in him of whom they have not heard ? and how shall they hear without a Preacher ?"

This being the great purpose of our churches, we ask, are there any defects in their ordinary arrangement, which tend to defeat or impede that purpose? We think there are. Those surely are defects-to write no harsher name—which embarrass either the hearer or the preacher in the one great aim of the service.

The hearer comes to hear the word. He enters the church. How is the interior fitted for his reception? It presents some features which distract his mind, and some which discommode his body; and both seriously disturbing his worship. Among the former must be classed the deceptive decorations. He finds the walls elaborately wrought into panel and cornice and niche, amply be-figured with arabesque in imitative relief. A slight inspection suffices to betray them. They are unreal. They are a painted semblance. His mind recoils from the deception. He looks upward; there surely can be no falsehood between him and heaven. But there is. The


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