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ble by dullest intellects and most alien ears. In this wise did Episcopius convert many to his opinions, who yet understood not the language in which he discoursed. The chief thing is, that the messenger believe that he has an authentic message to deliver. For counterfeit messengers that mode of treatment which Father John de Plano Carpini relates to have prevailed among the Tartars would seem effectual, and, perhaps, deserved enough. For my own part, I may lay claim to so much of the spirit of martyrdom as would have led me to go into banishment with those clergymen whom Alphonso the Sixth of Portugal drave out of his kingdom for refusing to shortem their pulpit eloquence. It is possible, that, having been invited into my brother Biglow’s desk, I may have been too little scrupulous in using it for the venting of my own peculiar doctrines to a congregation drawn together in the expectation and with the desire of hearing him. . I am not wholly unconscious of a peculiarity of mental organization which impels me, like the railroad-engine with its train of cars, to run backward for a short distance in order to obtain a fairer start. I may compare myself to one fishing from the rocks when the sea runs high, who, misinterpreting the suction of the undertow for the biting of some larger fish, jerks suddenly, and finds that he has caught bottom, hauling in upon the end of his line a trail of various algae, among which, nevertheless, the naturalist may haply find somewhat to repay the disappointment of the angler. Yet have I conscientiously endeavored to adapt myself to the impatient temper of the age, daily degenerating more and more from the high standard of our pristine New England. To the catalogue of lost arts I would mournfully add also that of listening to two-hour sermons. Surely we have been abridged into a race of pigmies. For, truly, in those of
the old discourses yet subsisting to us in print, the end. less spinal column of divisions and subdivisions can be likened to nothing so exactly as to the vertebrae of the Saurians, whence the theorist may conjecture a race of Anakim proportionate to the withstanding of these other monsters. I say Anakim rather than Nephelim, because there seem reasons for supposing that the race of those whose heads (though no giants) are constantly enveloped in clouds (which that name imports) will never become extinct. The attempt to vanquish the innumerable heads of one of those aforementioned discourses may supply us with a plausible interpretation of the second labor of Hercules, and his successful experiment with fire affords us a useful precedent. But while I lament the degeneracy of the age in this regard, I cannot refuse to succumb to its influence. Looking out through my study-window, I see Mr. Biglow at a distance busy in gathering his Baldwins, of which, to judge by the number of barrels lying about under the trees, his crop is more abundant than my own, by which sight I am admonished to turn to those orchards of the mind wherein my labors may be more prospered, and apply myself diligently to the preparation of my next Sabbath's discourse.—H. W.]
Darsn't, used indiscriminately, either in singular or plural number, for dare not, dares quot, and dared mot.
Deacon off, to give the cue to ; derived from a custom, once universal, but now extinct, in our New England Congregational churches. An important part of the office of deacon was to read aloud the hymns given out by the Iminister, one line at a time, the congregation singing each line as soon as read.
Demmercrat, leadin’, one in favor of eactending slavery; a free-trade lecturer maintained in the custom-house.
Doughface, a contented lickspittle; a common variety of Northern politician.
Dunno, dmo, do not or does not Acnow.
halts between two opinions; a trimmer.
Ferfle, ferful, fearful; also an intensive.
Fish-skin, used in New England to clarify coffee.
Fix, a difficulty, a nonplus.
Foller, folly, to follow.
Furrer, furrow. Metaphorically, to draw a straight furrow is to live uprightly or decorously.