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not sure of keeping his wife, or of knowing his father; his canoe is not his own ; and when he lays his hand on his breast, he cannot say, This skin is mine. Now, without these rights, the man is not a man, nature is violated in his person. Follow slavery under all latitudes, in all regions, whatever the institutions, nations, or creeds, everywhere you find the same origin, the same progress, the Same law, the same result, as monotonous and horrible as the life of the slaves. The history of slavery knows no change. It is in all places, it has been at every epoch, an obstacle to the systematic peopling of the earth, an obstacle to the propagation of the gospel, an obstacle to the quiet elevation of the inferior races, an obstacle to the progressive civilization of the superior races. The moralist calls it a crime—the historian and economist a scourge.*

There is, then, no peace, no safety, no hope for us as a people, with slavery in the land. Not freedom only, but our very Christianity would go down before its blighting power. I speak not to politicians and partisans, but to Christian men and women, to those who love the gospel, who love men for whom Christ died, who love their country as the heritage and home of a Christian freedom and civilization. To you, I say, is given the future of this land, and the future of an unhappy race, to Save the one by instructing and elevating the other. To you it is given to redeem Christianity from reproach, and to make it the renovating and conservative power in our convulsed and imperiled nation.

* Cochin: Results of Emancipation.




IT cannot be questioned that the new era, the grand period which opened in France in the days of the Constituent Assembly, rendered general the cause of rational liberty to which England had already accorded a local homage; it cannot, I say, be questioned that this age has the honor of having really destroyed slavery. Without doubt former times had propagated the principle; but the philosophical era, has established the fact, and it has already advanced farther on this question, in forty years, than in

the seventeen hundred and ninety-nine years of the preceding period. This remark has important bearings upon the laws and statutes of which I am to treat. To give the means of subsistence to individuals who from one fiftieth year to another, or from one jubilee to another, might have alienated their property, and in order to bind closely servants to families and families to servants, Moses made special laws upon domesticity; he established a contract of engagement or a lease of service of two kinds, the Septenary and the jubilary. Now, in respect to these statutes, the received French translations of the Pentateuch furnish one of the gravest proofs of the abuse which words or homonyms may undergo in the transition from one language to another. Without any regard to the nature of the fact, servants, the Hebrew domestics, have been entirely transformed into slaves. Perhaps, also, as I have already remarked, there has been a pious intention to let it be believed that in the law of Moses slavery was maintained, and that it is owing exclusively to the law of Jesus Christ that the earth is now rid of it. When a Hebrew, driven by necessity, consented to serve a family—“sold himself as a slave,” say the translations,—the law required the following conditions in his favor: 1st, as the price of his lease of engagement (or, if you please, as the price of purchase of the so-called slave), he received in advance a sum proportionate to the nature of the work for which he was fitted ; 2d, after six years, his contract of hiring, his lease of service, expired by right; 3d, during this time he was supported, suitably maintained, and subjected to a moderate labor; 4th, finally, at the expiration of his lease, he received either in money or in subsistence, sufficient to defray his expenses and the cost of returning to his paternal home. * “If thou obtain for a servant a Hebrew,” said the law, “he shall serve thee six years, and in the seventh year he shall go free, without owing thee anything; on the contrary, . . . when thou shalt send him away free from thee, it shall not be with empty hands: but thou shalt give him something of thy flock, of thy threshing-floor, of thy wine-press, of all that in which the Lord shall have blessed thee. During the days of his service thou shalt abstain from ruling over him rigorously, from using him as it is the custom in other places (in Egypt for example) to use slaves: he shall be to thee as the (free) hired servant and as the foreign workman.” If the servant was happy with his master, and loved him, or if for reasons which will be shown hereafter, he formally desired to

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remain with him, then the transition was effected from the Septenary lease of which the duration was fixed, to the jubilee lease, which was longer or shorter in proportion to the time which yet remained before the fiftieth official year or succeeding jubilee. In this case the custom was to lead the servant before the judges to take action according to his wish. The end of his ear was pierced ; this was the sign which declared that he would serve for ever; in other words, that he had renounced his lease of six years, and that his engagement carried him to the great year, when he returned of right to his possession in his father's house.” This manner of regarding servants explains at once the strange and enormous abuse of language into which translators have fallen when they have stated, among other things, that a Hebrew could sell his daughter as a slave. According to the law and the later regulations, before a father could put a daughter under age to service, he must be reduced to the greatest state of distress, he must have sold all, even to his last garment. He could not engage a daughter who had reached the age of puberty, because then paternal authority had come to an end, and it only remained to exercise a surveillance until the time of marriage. The first money which the father acquired must be used to redeemed the hired daughter—to avail himself of the right of breaking the engagement. Finally, and this was the grand feature of the law, the man who took as a servant a girl in her minority, contracted a tacit obligation to marry her when she should be marriageable, or to marry her to one of his sons; so that the virtue of a young and perhaps beautiful girl, should not be exposed to the powerful seductions of a master. “When a man shall have engaged his daughter as a servant, it is said, she shall not go forth from the house of her master as other servants go forth ; if she displeases this master and he does

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not wish to marry her, she shall be as if released from her engagement, or redeemed, and he shall have no right to make her enter into the service of a strange family; he cannot practice in this respect the least deceit. If, on the contrary, he affiances her to his son, she shall be treated according to the ordinary right of daughters.” When a Hebrew took his wife with him into the service of his patron, he took her home again in the seventh year, as well as the children whom she had borne. If he married a woman given by his master, he went forth alone, that is to say, the woman finished her engagement, and the children followed the fate of their mother. The law, in this connection, leaves no doubt. It speaks of the engagement and the lease of service by women exactly as of the lease of service by men: “When one of thy brethren,” it says, “shall have engaged himself to thee to serve thee (shall have sold himself to thee), whether he be a Hebrew man or a Hebrew woman, he shall serve thee six years; but in the seventh year he shall go free.” Consequently, if the sixth year of the husband corresponded to the second year of the wife, she must still pass four years with the master unless she redeemed or released herself. But if the wife of this man was engaged till the jubilee year, and if he had not the means to redeem her, the master could not refuse to keep him himself, if he asked it, till the time of general liberty.t Foreigners or their children could hire themselves in the same way; for though the law says, they shall serve for ever, this does not mean a real perpetuity, as is proved by the articles of Exodus and Deuteronomy where these words are applied to the Hebrew servant. The only difference was that the foreigner engaged for the whole jubilee-lease was required to fulfil his time of service even to the end, while the Hebrew hired to a foreign resi

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