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strange races; the quick grasping within our nervous hands of the paramount commercial interests of the earth; the changing of the seat of the world's exchange, following the sun towards its rest, glorifying in its course Ctesiphon and Byzantium and Venice and Holland and England, and resting for a while in its eternal cycle on the shores of this land closest towards the West, all plainly show that we, in our turn with the other nations, have arrived at our Era of Commercialism. How preserve the material glory of this era within the limitations imperatively demanded by the traditions and genius of our people? How extend its legitimate power and concurrently preserve this country from a government of utilitarianism, the mere government of wealth and power, with no high ultimate ambition, but with sure culminations in the lessening of the importance and the decay of the higher virtues of the citizen? At the critical period, Rome did not differentiate between the real and higher objects of government and the mere acquisition of naked power and wealth. Hence she failed. She had no class of citizens animated with that high and exalted intelligence where the vital essence of government could be fully preserved. She did not retain the high ideals of citizenship, but fell into the control of iron force and physical power. The result was sure: a Verres in Sicily; the wide swath of proconsular ruin in Africa, in Gaul, and in the East; the ultimate decay of Rome's free institutions; and then “the dark-skinned daughters of Isis, with drum and timbrel and wanton mien ; devotees of the Persian Mithras; emasculated Asiatics; priests of Cybele, with their wild dances and discordant cries; worshippers of the great goddess Diana; barbarian captives with the rites of Teuton priests; Syrians, Jews, Chaldean astrologers, and Thessalian sorcerers.” The genius of our civilization will allow to us no turning back in the tide of the world's trade, nor can we change the era of commerce at home. We can only guide the course of these great movements. How guide them is the living, throbbing question of to-day. How change the unvarying rule of history? How differentiate between the real glory and the inherent dangers of this class of epochs, which of all eras have been the most fateful to the nations of the earth? Our answer to this riddle of the ages is, that its questions can be solved and the real glory of our institutions perpetuated by jealously preserving the exalted character of American citizenship. The most important element of that character in the citizen is an intelligence which will perceive amidst the grandeur of our material triumphs the hidden dangers to our institutions, and whilst fostering the one will jealously watch the dangers of the other. The character of an era of commerce is necessarily the most complicated because it is more widely ramified than any other, and demands the highest degree of intelligence to thoroughly comprehend it in its thousand different effects upon the life of the people. An epoch of war, or an era of governmental creation, administration, or reconstruction, is more easily to be comprehended and its respective dangers can be more readily grasped, because through the skein, tangled though it may be, there is always the one controlling thread. Moreover, these last-mentioned epochs are generally controlled by some master spirit, whose genius has given him supreme control in the exigencies of the era. Some Cavour or Cromwell, towering above his fellows, has understood and firmly grasped the conditions of the hour, and the people have followed the master's guidance. This cannot be in an era of commercialism. This era is the result of the infinite interminglings by the people of their more than infinite interests. It is the development of the elements of a complex civilization with its ramifications, which generally are not understood or perceived. The era of commercialism concerns the whole people. Its spirit laughs with the farmer as the sunshine gathers the fields in its ripening embrace. It ripples with the waters and sings in the sails as the ship, filled with the products of our busy hands, flies to distant lands. It walks in the crowded marts of the cities and touches with its controlling spirit men of every class and condition. It furnishes an open field for our thrift and gratifies us by its independence. It arrives, however, at only one height, and its tendency, unwatched and unguarded, is to measure men and civilizations and governments by its own unchangeable Procrustean rule. It appeals to our love of power and ministers to every comfort. It is all-pervading, and within its rightful bounds it is right. It is a part of the inner life of all the people, and its tendencies cannot be guided or arrested by the spirit of one genius, but can be reached only by rousing the action of all of the people. It is slow-moving and insidious, and to conserve its legitimate glory and arrest its evil tendencies there is needed the highest intelligence of all the body politic. This imposing spectacle of young and intelligent manhood assembled here, where “we behold the bright countenances of truth in the quiet and still air of delightful studies,” is the inspiration of my answer that the mighty questions of this era can be met and solved for the ultimate good of the Republic by the exalted intelligence of American citizenship. And here let me enter my earnest protest against the half-grounded mediocrity which only glances into the outer life of the affairs of to-day. The half-taught man will not suffice for the peculiar needs of the citizenship of this era. That mediocrity of intelligence which will not strive to recognize the high and important and rightful place that material power should hold in this Republic is not fitted to settle the direction of this era. More than this, that mediocrity of intelligence which will not differentiate between making wealth and its influence and its acquirement the standard of all civic excellence, and that radicalism which denies to material power any influence in the body politic, will but increase the dangers of the era. Here will be needed the very sublimity of the intelligence of American citizenship. For whilst energizing and developing the life of this commercial era the citizen of this day must preserve, unimpaired in pristine vigor, the foundations beneath our institutions of liberty. How vast and how splendid will be your opportunity 1 Consider the field upon which to expend your powers, cultivated and strengthened within this great institution of learning. Whether for national weal or woe is hidden in the womb of the future, the isolation of our past has flown with the spirit of the day. Every question has broadened in its scope, and our old system of commercial life has changed its very being. “Not rivers and provinces and peoples are implicated, but oceans and continents and races; not parties and policies, but hemispheres and civilizations. The world itself is involved. On the hinge of these questions may turn, is likely to turn, the history of centuries.” The peopling of our fields, the excess of our products beyond our needs, the restless energies of this free people, have overthrown the barriers of sea, distance, and tradition. The West, no longer aglow with the rainbow of promise to the hosts of Europe, but thronged with its own earnest people, has turned its face to the millions of the East, there to fight out on the broadest field of endeavor ever vouchsafed to man the supreme contest for the control of the world's commerce. The

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