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interested and divided the colony. Some of the militia scrupled to follow colours in which there was a cross, lest they should be doing honour to an idol, whilst others refused to serve under a mutilated banner, lest they should be suspected of having renounced their allegiance to the crown of England.”
As to the real character of MR. ROGER WILLIAMS, multifarious are the testimonies borne in its favour. Governor Hutchinson says, “ Instead of showing any revengeful temper or resentment, he was continually employed in acts of kindness and benevolence to his enemies." Governor Hopkins declares, that “ROGER WILLIAMS justly claimed the honour of being the first legislator in the world that fully and effectually provided for and established a free, full, and absolute LIBERTY of conscience!" Mr. Calender observes, that “the true grounds of Li
were not understood in America, till MR. WILLIAMS and Mr. Clarke publicly avowed-that CHRIST alone is king in his own kingdom, and that no others had authority over his subjects in the affairs of conscience and eternal salvation !"
The Rev. Isaac Backus has asserted, with great truth, that “MR. ROGER WILLIAMS was not only the first Baptist Minister in New England, but also the first founder of complete religious liberty upon earth since the rise of Antichrist.” And well might Dr. William Gordon, author of the History of the American War, declare, “ROGER WILLIAMS justly
BERTY OF CONSCIENCE
claims the honour of having been the first legislator in the world in its latter ages that fully and effectually provided for and established a free, full, and absolute LIBERTY OF CONSCIENCE !” Thus it is that not the great and good William Penn, but a poor, persecuted, Welsh Baptist minister, first asserted and established universal liberty of conscience in the wilderness of America! this illustrious sufferer for conscience seems to be forgotten
Patriots have toiled, and in their country's cause Bled nobly; and their deeds, as they deserve, Receive proud recompense. We give in charge Their names to the sweet lyre! The historic muse Proud of the treasure, marches with it down To latest times; and sculpture, in her turn, Gives bond in stone and ever-during brass To guard them, and to immortalize her trust: But fairer wreaths are due, though never paid, To those, who posted at the shrine of TRUTH Have fallen in her defence! A patriot's blood Well spent in such a strife may earn indeed, And for a time ensure, to his loved land The sweets of liberty and equal laws ; But MARTYRS struggle for a brighter prize, And win it with more pain. Their blood is shed In confirmation of the noblest claim, Our claim to feed upon IMMORTAL TRUTH, To walk with God, to be divinely free, To soar, and to anticipate the skies! Yet few remember them. They lived unknown Till persecution dragg'd them into fame, And chased them up to heaven! Their ashes flew, No marble tells us whither. With their names,
No bard embalms and sanctifies his song;
My FRIEND RICHARDS, however, would have set the exalted principles and generous conduct of Roger Williams in their proper light. In his last illness he lamented, that he had not carried his intention of writing his Life into execution. This slight sketch furnishes the reader with some faint idea of what he would most satisfactorily have accomplished. However reviled by bigots and persecutors, a statue of gold ought to have been raised to his virtues! But the consummately free state of RHODE ISLAND, adorned and enriched by its liberal university, is the mausoleum of his glory. After the lapse of more than a century, deign, hallowed Spirit—to accept this imperfect tribute of regard to thy memory!
RHODE ISLAND, though the smallest of the United States, has, on account of its climate and fertility, been denominated the Eden of America, The University established at Warren, 1764, was in 1770, removed to PROVIDENCE, the capital of the state. On the side of a hill, the COLLEGE, an edifice of brick, stands four stories high, one hundred and fifty feet long and fifty wide, with a partition of ten feet on each side of the building, It has eight large rooms, and many lesser ones, for
the accommodation of one hundred students. The spot commands a fine view of the city, bay, shipping, and the surrounding country! Whilst the Library of my friend RICHARDS remains amongst them, to perpetuate the name and character of its donor, may it urge its worthy president, as well as the members of this truly respectable institution, to the continued exercise of that spirit of liberality, which induced AN HONEST CAMBRO-BRITON at the distance of three thousand miles to mark and reward it! A sensible letter, written by an Alumnus, has been published, suggesting improvements.
An account of the last Commencement of BROWN UNIVERSITY, September, 1818, shall be introduced,-it will be a novelty to most of my readers. The exercises present an entertaining variety of subjects
BROWN UNIVERSITY COMMENCEMENT.
On Wednesday last was the annual Commencement of Brown University, in this town. Early in the forenoon, the procession, composed of the Corporation, Professors, Tutors, Students, Graduates, &c. escorted by Captain Angell's Company of Light Infantry, and accompanied by a select band of music, proceeded to the First Baptist Meeting-house, where a pertinent prayer from PreSIDENT MESSER, introduced the following exercises :
1. Salutatory Addresses, in Latin; and an Essay, in English, on early Prejudice; by Thomas F. CARPENTER.
2. The influence of moral obligation on Society: An Oration, by JARED W. WILLIAMS. 3. An Oration on the nature and importance
Cof truth and goodness, by Elias Fisk.
4. Independence of character, by Walter P. B. Judson.
15. Oration on the study of Metaphysicks, by JABEZ PORTER.
6. The moral influence of Memory: An Oration, by Martin Snell.
7. A Latin Oration on Greek and Roman Eloquence, by STEPHEN MARSH Rogers, of Philadelphia.
8. Utility of Monuments: An Oration, by William Watson.
9. Study of Natural History, by Alva Carpenter.
10. Reason and Fancy: An Oration, by WilLIAM S. Patten.
11, The Atheist: An Oration, by John Winslow Whitman.
12. An Oration on the causes of the decay of Genius, by Azel Utley.
13. The present situation of America, by Esek Aldrick,