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TO A STAR.
Thou bright glittering star of even,
How calmly, brightly dost thou shine,
There, beings pure as heaven's own air,
There, cloudless days and brilliant nights,
Thou little sparkling star of even,
EULOGY ON WASHINGTON. IN WASHINGTON seemed combined all the elements to constitute a man in the highest meaning of the term. His form was of the finest specimens of manly beauty, and his carriage full of grace and dignity. His constitution, both physical and mental, of the happiest mold. In power of mind he stood at the head of the human intellect. His perception of truth, in the vast and various concerns with which his life was charged, seemed to indicate the intuition of a superior being ; the unrivaled accuracy of his judgment was demonstrated in the extraordinary success of his wide and eventful range of action. His brightness was not indeed the glare of the meteor, but the steady light of the sun : it was not the brilliancy of a single act, but the finished series of his life : the combined results of all his action.
Hence the firmness of his resolution and the courage of his temper. Hence he shrunk not in the field of battle or the moral conflict; and conscious of the right, never trembled for the issue. Unlike the desperate few, who have achieved a bad eminence by indiscriminate means, he sought no results which virtue did not sanction • used no appliances which honesty did not advise. His character is unique, and stands alone on an eminence, unapproached—I had almost said, inaccessible. Its union of goodness and greatness, of moral beauty and intellectual strength, adorned by services of inappreciable value to the human race, furnishes an instance of the sublime in morals, such as no human example has presented. It has changed the general idea of greatness, and shewn thať the most enviable talent must find assistance in the aids of virtue.
He was fortunate beyond all the past, in the position which he held in the affairs of the world. The presiding genius at the birth of the first free nation-the daring leader of the first successful struggle for the principles of freedom—the idol of a young nation, yet to increase as the sands of the sea-shore-the grand agitator of the change, yet to come over all the governments of the earth, his fame will increase with ages and the multiplication of his race.
He stood at the head of a new country-at the beginning of a new civil polity—at the source and fountain of that stream of liberty which was yet to overflow the earth, and like the deluge of old, to swallow up every vestige of the wrongs which had passed. In the whole range of time, in the wide variety of human affairs, there has been no era so felicitous for his existence as that in which he was born and lived ; at no other point, could equal virtue have met with equal success—no other career could have secured the like train and splendor of consequences.
In his life, fortunate and happy above all other example, without a spot or blemish to mar his private fame, he was covered with glory in his public career ; through all the round of action,-through all the change and casualty of life, he stood a model and exemplar to the human race. In the purity of his motives, in the nobleness of his designs, and in the extent and success of his course, he stands without a rival or an equal.
Without having been bred to the science of war, he assumed the command of our armies, and for seven long years, with every disparity of means, baffled the skill and paralyzed the genius of the most celebrated soldiers. Without experience, he fought like a veteran ; nearly without means, he still found resources; and sometimes, almost without an army, he held the enemy at bay by the vigor of his enterprises. This struggle for the mastery was long held in doubt, but the star of his fortune at length prevailed against the ostent of the times. He conquered, not for fame, but for freedom ; not for ambition, but for his country. How well and how greatly, let the present condition of the happy valleys and sunny mountains of freedom make answer.
But not even yet had he filled the full measure of his fame. In the pride of victory, in the flush of success, with a devoted soldiery, accustomed to execute his wishes, instead of stooping to the mean ambition of a tyrant, in ruining his country to elevate himself, he plucked the warrior's plume from his brow, and cast it with his sword at the feet of his country. Oh! how mean and little are the names of Alexander, of Cæsar, of Napoleon, when seen in the light of such a deed as this!
He retired to private life, unambitious of further distinction, and well pleased to escape the din and turmoil of his former days. In the seclusion of his retreat he cultivated the quiet arts of peace, without a regret for the past or a sigh for the future. But
fame found him here. The privacy of his condition did not obscure its glory, and again his country called him to her aid. The freedom we had won by valor must be preserved by wisdom. Though national independence was secured by the revolution, our political organization was imperfect.
We had the materials of freedom,but not its system-the power of self-government, without being well aware of the best means of using it. We had achieved the privilege of self-government, but history furnished no precedent to aid in its exercise. And we stood a people, free indeed, but wanting the ascertained means of self-preservation. The sages and soldiers of the revolution, with the illustrious Washington at their head, again came forward to meet the high exigency; they were successful. In a council combining more experience, more patriotism and more intellectual power than the history of ages could show, they devised a system of government, unique in its character and original in its design, which has answered the high behests of freedom, and stands a beacon light to all the nations of the earth. A numerous people now repose in peace and happiness beneath its power, encouraging by precept and example the diffusion of the benign principles of liberty.
Washington, without his own desire, was placed at the head of the new organization, by the voluntary suffrage of the people, and again became charged with the political destiny of his country. He assumed the responsibilities of his new and unprecedented station, and placed himself by the vigor and wisdom of his policy, upon the most enviable heights of political re