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ple may be held up to our ingenuous youth as pointing to the only mode in which they can, at this moment when the principles of natural subordination are overthrown among us, and the just correspondence and symmetry of our political system completely deranged, -gratify that avidity to serve the commonwealth-which is the passion of noble minds and restore to liberal studies and to vigorous talents that due and wholesome preponderance of which—by the most mischievous of all kinds of oppression,-in defiance of the dispensations of divine wisdom, and in violation of the laws of true political equality as well as of the prerogatives of nature, they are here systematically and almost universally deprived. If those who are our brightest ornaments,-our legitimate instructors—and our natural rulers, who have from nature authentic evidence of delegation to the functions of government, who, in the possession of superior capacity, wisdom and learning, carry with them“ the passport of Heaven to human place and honour," are excluded from the management of public affairs, they are not, however, absolved from the obligation of struggling for the regeneration of the state in another course of exertion which, although less direct and sure than the exercise of official authority, may nevertheless, produce the most salutary results. They still lie under engagements of interest and duty which they violate in resigning themselves to total inaction, when by the concentration of their desultory and scattered efforts in one focus,-by the speculations of the closet widely circulated,-by the admonitions of wisdom constantly reproduced, and by specimens of sound literature and chaste composition, they may finally succeed in touching the mastersprings and the nobler passions of our nature,-in refining and enlarging our habits of thought-in extending the range of our literary and scientific inquiries, and in correcting that low and degenerate fashion of argument which would sacrifice national honour to pecuniary interests, and which mistakes the suggestions of a sordid and improvident parsimony for those of genuine state economy—a principle both magnificent and prospective, and often opposed to all arithmetical calculation.
The objects and the maxims for which we have to contend are of more value and dignity than were ever before offered as the premium of patriotic labours. But a few years ago, and what Mr. Burke said of France at the commencement of her revolution, might with still greater justice, have been applied to this country;" that she had a smooth and easy career of felicity “and glory laid open to her beyond any thing recorded in the
u history of mankind.” The constitutions of other nations, particularly of that from which we derived the model of our own, were laboriously established by the efforts, and cemented by the blood of many generations. The treasures of their knowledge and even their resources
of language were the slow product--the gradual accretion of centuries of toil and discovery. To us, there descended by inheritance, the most perfect system of a free government that was ever established, and the most valuable body of literature both ornamental and instructive of which any country could boast. We commenced our course with all the advantages natural and adventitious which entitled Great Britain to claim preeminence over the most illustrious nations, as well of antiquity as of modern times. We sprung up, indeed, under better auspices:-with a constitution of government purged of the vices and abuses which clogged and disfigured her system; with forms of office free from the pageantry which corrupts the incumbent, and the expense which oppresses the citizen;-with a more splendid and prodigal allotment as to territory and soil, than was ever enjoyed by any people. Under the administration of Washington, whose memory and example are now equally menaced with oblivion, we bid fair to outstrip our great original both in power and glory; and we owe the political misery into which we have since fallen, more to a disregard of the genius of that administration, than to the peculiar circumstances of the times.
He loved commerce not because it enriches, but because it tends to enlighten a nation, and to aggrandize her in the most material points-in sentiment and fortitude. He valued commerce-not because it tends to promote the domestic convenience, and to pamper the luxury of mankind, but principally on account of the zeal for freedom, the thirst of enterprize, and the masculine firmness of character which it is calculated to produce. He considered it as the source of lasting opulence and power only when supported by a quick sense of honour and an inflexible energy of soul. Wealth he valued but as “the laborious and obedient slave of public virtue " and dignity"-as a minor concern, the vitality of which emanated from interests of a higher order, and which could be preserved only by organizing the instrumental means and cherishing the resolution of defending it from rapacity and lawless ambition. He prized and encouraged letters not merely on account of their efficacy in purifying the affections,-in humanizing the manners, and exalting the views, but from their aptitude to correct the evil tendencies which, together with in
estimable advantages, are inherent to the occupations of trade. He felt that they are éminently suited to counteract the narrow prudence and the short sighted selfishnes which trade too frequently inspires, and to teach, by the authority of reason and the force of example the salutary lessons--that parsimony may entail all the consequences of profusion that too great a sense of the value of wealth may be the very source of its danger--that magnanimity is the truest wisdom--that humiliation is the high road to poverty, and the prostitution of national honour the sure forerunner of ruin to the whole commonwealth.
This country is hideously metamorphosed since the days of Washington-but we are far from despairing of the public fortunes. It is not credulity to imagine that much of that spirit still remains which then seemed to pervade the great majority of this nation, and that to be made to reappear it needs only to be “ritually invoked.” Although the repetition of enormous crimes since the commencement of the French revolution, is calculated to render the present generation callous to any excesses of profligate power, we are not without a numerous body composing the best and most efficient class of citizens, who are justly shocked at the horrible depravity of the conduct and views of the Imperial government of France, particularly as they are exemplified in the cases of Spain and Holland. Although the grossest delusions and the most pernicious errors prevail generally on the subject of France, a large proportion of the intelligent proprietaries of this country are alive to most of the dangers which impend over us from that quarter, and look with a fearful and watchful eye on the tremendous growth of her power. It shall be one of the leading objects of this journal to unfold the whole extent of those dangers, and to administer in every form and at every recurrence of opportunity, the strongest antidotes to that blind security, which we consider as the capital evil, and the most serious distemper of the state. Should this journal become what by suitable exertions it may be rendered—“a bank of deposit and a bank of circula“tion" for correct representations of facts, for the fundamental truths of state-policy, and for the lessons of experience, much more may be accomplished than can be now distinctly foreseen or even readily imagined. It is a remark of Bolingbroke that truth and reason when vigorously and pertinaciously maintained will often bear down all prejudices and surmount all obstacles. “ Their progress," he adds, “ is generally sure al" though sometimes not observable by every eye.-Contrary VOL. I.
prejudices may seem to maintain themselves in vigour, and " these prejudices may be long kept up by passion and artifice. “ But when sound principles and natural sentiments continue “ to be urged, a little sooner, or a little later, and often when “ the revolution is least expected, the prejudices vanish at once, “ and give place to the dominion of wisdom and of truth.” Such should be the expectation of the enlightened and virtuous portion of our community, and upon this rational ground of hope should they persevere in combating abuses and in resisting delusions, that menace our very existence, and have already entailed upon the infancy of this republic all the marks of weakness and folly which usually accompany the dotage of governments.
I. This work will be well printed, on a good paper, in octavo, and will consist of four numbers annually, of at least two hundred pages each, to be issued quarterly.
II. The first number will be issued on the 1st of January, 1811.
III. Price of subscription, six dollars per annum, to be paid on the delivery of the second number of every year.
IV. Distant subscribers are expected to pay in advance, or on the delivery of the first number.
Subscriptions received by the Publishers; B. B. Hopkins and Co.; Thomas Barton Zantzinger and Co.; and Edward Earle, Philadelphia. Also, by D. Mallory and Co., Boston; Lyman, Hall and Co., Portland; Swift and Chipman, Middlebury, (Vt.); D. W. Farrand and Green, Albany; Patterson and Hopkins, Pittsburg; P. H. Nicklin and Co., Baltimore; J. W. Campbell, Petersburg, Virginia; and by all the principal Booksellers throughout the United States.
Philadelphia, January 1, 1811.