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age to renew the battle which their fathers began; so that truth and justice and mercy, and all the humane and Christian virtues, might not be extinguished from the land; so that no man would hereafter dare to limit and circumscribe the great principles on which the temple of Liberty was being built.
“Now, my countrymen, if you have been taught doctrines conflicting with the great land-marks of the Declaration of Independence; if you have listened to suggestions which would take away from its grandeur and mutilate the fair symmetry of its proportions; if you have been inclined to believe that all men are not created equal in those inalienable rights enumerated by our charter of liberty, - let me entreat you to come back; return to the fountain whose waters spring close by the blood of the Revolution. Think nothing of me, take no thought for the political fate of any man whomsoever, but come back to the truths that are in the Declaration of Independence.
"You may do any thing with me that you choose, if you will but heed these sacred principles; you may not only defeat me for the Senate, but you may take me and put me to death. While protending no indifference to earthly honors, I do claim to be actuated in this contest by something higher than an anxiety for office. I charge you to drop every paltry and insignificant thought for any man's success. It is nothing; I am nothing; Judge Douglas is nothing. But do not destroy that immortal emblem of humanity, ---the Declaration of American Independence."
Though it is not designed to enlarge this volume by the publication of many of our late President's speeches or letters, the following eloquent outburst of patriotism and devotion to principle must not be omitted. It is the closing part of a speech made in December, 1839.
“Many free countries have lost their liberties, and ours may lose hers; but if she shall, may it be my proudest plume, not that I was the last to desert her, but that I never deserted her! I know that the great volcano at Washington, aroused and directed by the evil spirit that reigns there, is belching forth the lava of political corruption in a current broad and deep, which is sweeping with frightful velocity over the whole length and breadth of the land, bidding fair to leave unscathed no green spot or living thing; while on its bosom are riding, like demons on the waves of hell, the imps of the evil spirit, and fiendishly torturing and taunting all those who dare resist its destroying course with the hopelessness oi their efforts; and knowing this, I cannot deny that all may be swept away. Broken by it I too may be; bow to it I never will. The probability that we may fall in the struggle ought not to deter us from the support of a cause which we deem to be just. It shall not deter me. If ever I feel the soul within me elevate and expand to those dimensions not wholly unworthy the Almighty Architect, it is when I contemplate the cause of my country deserted by all the world besides, and I, standing alone, hurling defiance at her victorious oppressors. And here, without contemplating consequences, before high heaven, and in the face of the whole world, I swear eternal fidelity to the just cause, as I deem it, of the land of my life, my liberty, and my love. And who that thinks with me will not adopt the oath that I take? Let none falter who thinks he is right, and we may succeed. But if, after all, we shall fall, be it so. We shall have the proud consolation of saying to our conscience, and to the departed shade of our country's freedom, that the course approved by our judgments and adored by our hearts, in disaster, in chains, in torture, and in death, we never faltered in defending."
One of the greatest speeches of his life was made by Mr. Lincoln in New York, at the Cooper Institute, on the 27th of February, 1860, before a crowded house; the venerable poet, William Cullen Bryant, presiding, and introducing the speaker in highly complimentary terms. It is too long for place on these pages, and its unity so perfect, that it is not easy to quote from it. It was eminently patriotic, and did much toward securing for him the favor of the New-York Republicans in the hour of nomination for the Presidency.
Somo writer has given the following pen-portrait of President Lincoln, which is believed to be correct:
“ Mr. Lincoln stands six feet and four inches high in his stockings. His frame is not muscular, but gaunt and wiry ; his arms are long, but not unreasonably so for a person of his height; his lower limbs are not disproportioned to his body. In walking, his gait, though firm, is never brisk. He steps slowly and deliberately, almost always with his head inclined forward, and his hands clasped behind his back. In matters of dress he is by no means precise. Always clean, he is never fashionable; he is careless, but not slovenly. In manner he is remarkably cordial, and, at the same time, simple. His politeness is always sincere, but never elaborate and oppressive. A warm shake of the hand, and a warmer smile of recognition, are his methods of greeting his friends. At rest, his features, though those of a man of mark, are not such as belong to a handsome man; but when his fine dark gray eyes are lighted up by any emotion, and his features begin their play, he would be chosen from among a crowd as one who had in him not only the kindly sentiments which women love, but the heavier metal of which full-grown men and presidents are made. His hair is black, and, though thin, is wiry. His head sits well on his shoulders, but beyond that it defies description. It nearer resembles that of Clay than that of Webster; but it is unlike either. It is very large, and, phrenologically, well-proportioned, betokening power in all its developments. A slightly Roman nose, a widecut mouth, and a dark complexion, with the appearance of having been weather-beaten, complete the description.
“In his personal habits, Mr. Lincoln is simple as a child. He loves a good dinner, and eats with the appetite which goes with a great brain; but his food is plain and nutritious. He never drinks intoxicating liquors of any sort, not even a glass of wine. He is not addicted to the use of tobacco in any shapo. Ho never was accused of a licentious act in all his life. He never uses profane language."
How would the heart of Lincoln's pious mother have rejoiced, could she have foreseen such a record of her son's spotless character and blameless life !
Still another writer pictures his manner in speaking: “ As a speaker, he is ready, precise, and fluent. His manner before a popular assembly is as he pleases to make it, being either superlatively ludicrous or very impressive. He employs but little gesticulation, but, when he desires to make a point, produces a shrug of his shoulders, an elevation of his eyebrows, a depression of his mouth, and a general malformation of countenance so comically awkward, that it never fails to bring down the house. His enunciation is slow and emphatic; and his voice, though sharp and powerful, at times has a frequent tendency to dwindle into a shrill and unpleasant sound. But, as before stated, the peculiar characteristic of his delivery is the remarkable mobility of his features, the frequent contortions of which excite a merriment his words could not produce."
A distinguished scholar, who heard him debate with Mr. Douglas, says, " He then proceeded to defend the Republican party. Here he charged Mr. Douglas with doing nothing for freedom; with disregarding the rights and interests of the colored man; and for about forty minutes he spoke with a power that we have seldom heard equalled. There was a grandeur in his thoughts, a comprehensiveness in his arguments, and a binding force in his conclusions, which were perfectly irresistible. The vast throng were silent as death: every eye was fixed upon the speaker, and all gave him serious attention. He was the tall man eloquent: his countenance glowed with animation, and his eye glistened with an in. telligence that made it lustrous. He was no longer awkward and ungainly, but graceful, bold, commanding."
Here the chapter narrating the struggles and successes of his manhood, previous to his entering on his great work, may fittingly close. It has been conclusively shown that the growing man was preparing for the advancing era. Bishop Simpson stated in his funeral address, that, "as early as 1839, Mr. Lincoln presented resolutions in the Legislature asking for emancipation in the District of Columbia, when, with but rare exceptions, the whole popular mind of his State was opposed to the measure. From that hour he was a steady and uniform friend of humanity, and was preparing for the conflict of later years."
Who cannot see God's hand in all these events, though rapidly traced, as the hour and the man approached each other? The scroll of Time is fast unrolling; and as