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and then his eye fell upon her scanty but neat dress. Instantly his face lighted up. "My poor girl,' said ne, you have come here with no governor or senator or member of congress to plead your
You seem honest and truthful, and you don't wear hoops, and I will be whipped but I will pardon your brother.' Another instance :-Among the large number of persons waiting to see Mr. Lincoln, on a certain day in November, was a small, pale, delicatelooking boy, about thirteen years old. The President saw him standing, looking feeble and faint, and said, “Come here, my boy, and tell me what you want." The boy advanced, placed his hand on the arm of the President's chair, and, with bowed head and timid accents, said, “Mr. President, I have been a drummer in a regiment for two years, and my colonel got angry with me and turned me off; I was taken sick, and have been a long time in hospital. This is the first time I have been out, and I came to see if you could not do something for me.” The President looked at him kindly and tenderly, and asked him where he lived. “I have no home,” answered the boy. “Where is your father ?” “He died in the army," was the reply. “Where is your mother?” continued the President. “ My mother is dead also; I have no mother, no father, no brothers, no sisters, and," bursting into tears,
no friends—nobody cares for me.” Mr. Lincoln's eyes filled with tears, and he said to him, “Can't you sell newspapers ?” said the boy, “I am too weak, and the surgeon of the hospital told me I must leave, and I have no money, and no place to go to." The scene was wonderfully affecting. The President drew forth a card, and addressing on it certain officials, to whom his request was law, gave special directions “to care for this poor boy.” The wan face of the little drummer lit up with a happy smile as he received the
paper, and he went away-convinced that he had one good and true friend at least in the person of the President.
But though kindhearted almost to a fault, nevertheless he always endeavoured to be just. Mr. Van Allen relates the following: “ I well remember one day when a poor woman sought, with the persistent affection of a mother, for the pardon of her son, condemned to death. She was successful in her petition. When she had left the room, he turned to me and said, Perhaps I have done wrong,
but at all events I have made that poor woman happy.' Here is another case: “Late one afternoon a lady with two gentlmen had an interview with Mr. Lincoln : she had come to ask that her husband, who was a prisoner of war, might be permitted to take the oath and be released from confinement. To secure a degree of interest on the part of the President, one of the gentlemen claimed to be an acquaintance of Mrs. Lincoln; this, however, received but little attention, and the President proceeded to ask what position the lady's husband held in the rebel service. "Oh,' she said, he was a captain. A captain!' rejoined Mr. Lincoln ; ' Indeed, rather too big a fish to set free simply upon his taking the oath! If he was an officer it is proof positive that he has been a zealous rebel. I cannot release him.' Here the lady's friend reiterated the assertion of his acquaintance with Mrs. Lincoln. Instantly the President's hand was upon the bell-rope. The usher in attendance answered the summons. Cornelius, take this man's name to Mrs. Lincoln, and ask her what she knows of him.' The boy presently returned with the reply that Mrs. L. knew nothing of him whatever. 'It is just as I suspected,' said the President. The party made one more attempt to enlist his sympathy, but without effect. It is of no use,' was the reply. "I cannot release him ! And the trio withdrew in high displeasure."
The style of Mr. Lincoln's speeches and writings is eminently plain and practical. He wrote and spoke in harmony with the modes of thinking and of speaking habitual to the common people. A “spade” he called a “spade.” “His intellect was keen, emphatically logical in its action, and capable of the closest and most subtle analysis; and he used language for the sole purpose of stating, in the clearest and simplest possible form, the precise idea he wished to convey." Take this instance. In the message sent to the extra session of Congress, held in the July following his inauguration, speaking of secession and the measures taken by the Southern leaders to bring it about, there occurs the following remark:“With rebellionthus sugarcoated,” &c. Mr. Defrees, the government printer, was a good deal disturbed by the use of the term "sugar-coated," and finally went to the President about it. Their relations to each other being of the most intimate character, he told Mr. Lincoln frankly that he ought to remember that a message to Congress was a different affair from a speech at a mass-meeting in Illinois: that the messages became a part of history, and should be written accordingly.
6 What is the matter now ?" inquired the President.
“ Why,” said Mr. Defrees, “you have used an undignified expression in the message;" and then, reading the paragraph aloud, he added, “I would alter the structure of that, if I were you."
Defrees,” replied Mr. Lincoln, “ that word expresses precisely my idea, and I am not going to change it. The time will never come in this country when the people don't know exactly what sugar-coated means.' It is evident he had no pride of intellectnot the slightest desire for display; no thought or purpose but that of making everybody understand precisely what he believed and meant to utter. And while this habit may sacrifice the graces of style, it gains immeasurably in practical force and effect.
The character of President Lincoln is singularly consistent. There was no two-sidedness, no wickedness, no mystery about him. All was straight as an horizontal line. Throughout the terrible trials
of his administration he maintained an unsullied integrity of purpose and conduct which, while some rulers may have equalled, none have surpassed. He was perfectly free from ambition, or aggrandisement, or despotism. Perhaps no man in similar circumstances was ever less corrupted. As one writer remarks,“ He had command of an army greater than that of any living monarch; he wielded authority less restricted than that conferred by any other constitutional government; he disbursed sums of money equal to the exchequer of any nation in the world: yet no man, of any party, believes him in any instance to have aimed at his own aggrandisement, to have been actuated by personal ambition, or to have consulted any other interest than the welfare of his country and the perpetuity of its republican form of government.”
The religiousness of his character is not so strongly marked as is desirable. Indeed, in the most of great public actors this is the usual drawback. In the common acceptation of the term religion, Mr. Lincoln could scarcely be called a religious man. If a constitutional tendency to dwell upon sacred things; an emotional nature which finds ready expression in religious conversation and revival meetings; the culture and development of the devotional element till the expression of religious thought and experience becomes almost habitual, --if these are characteristic of the religious man then these were notamong the characteristics of Abraham Lincoln. “ And yet,”. says Carpenter, "a sincerer Christian, I believe, never lived. Aside from emotional expression, I believe no man had a more abiding sense of his dependence upon God or faith in the Divine government, and in the power and ultimate triumph of truth and right in the world.” And he adds a fact worthy of record : “A lady interested in the work of the christian commission had occasion, in the prosecution of her duties, to have several interviews with the President, of a business nature. He was much impressed with the devotion and earnestness of purpose she manifested, and on one occasion, after she had discharged the object of her visit, he said to her, Mrs.--- I have formed a very high opinion of your christian character, and now, as we are alone, I have a mind to ask you to give me, in brief, your idea of what constitutes a true religious experience. The lady replied that, in her judgment, it consisted of a conviction of one's own sinfulness and weakness and personal need of the Saviour for strength and support; that views of mere doctrine might and would differ, but when one was really brought to feel his need of Divine help, and to seek the aid of the Holy Spirit for strength and guidance, it was satisfactory evidence of his having been born again. This was the subject of her reply. When she had concluded, Mr. Lincoln was very thoughtful for a few
He at length said, very earnestly, “If what you have told me is really a correct view of this great subject, I think I can
say with sincerity that I hope I am a Christian. I had lived," he continued, 'until my boy Willie died, without realising fully these things. That blow overwhelmed me. It showed me my weakness as I had never felt it before, and if I can take what you have stated as a test, I think I can safely say that I know something of that change of which you speak; and, I will further add, that it has been my intention for some time, at a suitable opportunity, to make a public religious profession !”
Abraham Lincoln died a martyr to his country. He fell by the hand of the assassin Booth, on the 14th of April, 1865, aged 56 years. That day being the anniversary of the surrender of Fort Sumpter, in 1861, by Major Anderson, to the rebel forces, had been designated as the day by which the same officer should again raise the American flag upon the fort, in the presence of an assembled multitude, and with ceremonies befitting so auspicious an occasion. The whole land rejoiced at the prospect of peace. President Lincoln shared in the common joy, and took part in a public expression. One form which the national rejoicing was to take was a performance at Ford's Theatre, Washington, in the presence of the Executive, General Grant, and other distinguished persons. The public were notified of this. General Grant was unable to attend. President Lincoln expressed himself as that he would be glad to stay at home, but that as the people expected both General Grant and himself, and Grant could not be there, he did not like to disappoint them altogether, and so he would attend. He attended ; and while sitting in his box the assassin stealthily crept behind him and shot him through the head with a silver-mounted Derringer pistol, almost simultaneously exclaiming “ Sic semper tyrannis ! the South is avenged." The President was rendered instantaneously insensible; never spoke more; and died the next morning, at twenty minutes past seven o'clock. Thus fell America's greatest president. The fall paralyzed the whole nation, and plunged its millions of people into profound grief, a profounder grief than even the civil war itself. All honour was paid the martyred body of the good statesman. It was embalmed ; laid in state ; taken in stately procession through many of the great cities of the Union ; and finally placed in its last resting-place, in the cemetery of his own Springfield; where, in a plain tomb, with the word “Lincoln” only carved thereon to point spectators where he lay, it awaits“ a sure and certain resurrection unto eternal life.” We do not think that because President Lincoln was shot in a theatre his soul would be consigned to perdition. We could wish he had received his death summons in some other place and in some other way, just as we could wish that the prophet sent to Jeroboam had not been slain by a lion because of his disobedience to the plain commands of his God: but as the death of the prophet was not his
destruction to hell, so we think the assassination of President Lincoln was not his eternal death. This opinion of the President's eternal safety will, we feel sure, be endorsed by all intelligent and right-minded christians; and to seek, by any show of argument, to win persons of a contrary belief would be as fruitless as the attempt to convince a person with jaundiced eye that everything he saw was not yellow. We may be wrong, of course, but the charity which we have learned and imbibed of Christ our Saviour encourages us to err on this side, and to leave any difficulty there may appear to the solution of that day when we shall see as we are seen.
ART. II.-THE INFLUENCE OF CHRISTIAN CHARACTER.
system, as its principles are more pure and exalted, its rules more simple and comprehensive, and its sanctions more weighty and powerful. It includes “ Whatsoever things are true, whatsoever things are honest, whatsoever things are just, whatsoever things are pure, whatsoever things are lovely, whatsoever things are of good report.” And the motives by which these virtues are enforced touch us at every point, awakening our “ fear of the evil that would grieve us,” and calling forth our sympathy with all that is “good and acceptable" in the sight of God and men. Christian is,” therefore, “the highest style of man.” It is not, however, to the nature and excellence of Christian morality that the attention of the reader is here invited, but to its practical exhibition as one of the means of moral renovation-theimportance of Christian character in connection with the dissemination of Christian truth. The subject is not to be confounded with a nearly
There is a primary efficient influence; and there are secondary instrumental influences. "The power of the Spirit of God" is absolutely necessary to the success of the truth, in whatever way it is presented to men's minds. The most perfect example of moral goodness would be utterly insufficient for the conversion of a single sinner without that Divine energy,that “unction from the Holy One," which puts the important difference between the power of godliness and the mere form of it. It is “another Gospel” that would make the death of Christ no more than the sequel to his life, or the confirmation of his doctrine: he“ died for our sins according to the Scriptures." And “ the elect of God” have obtained the character