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plation so vast and so overpowering. He wonders that he is not overlooked amid the grandeur and the variety which are on every side of him; and passing upwards from the majesty of nature to the majesty of nature's Architect, he exclaims, "What is man that thou art mindful of him, or the son of man that thou shouldest deign to visit him?"
It is not for us to say whether inspiration revealed to the psalmist the wonders of the modern astronomy. But even though the mind be a perfect stranger to the science of these enlightened times, the heavens present a great and an elevating spectacle, an immense concave, reposing upon the circular boundary of the world, and the innumerable lights which are suspended from on high, moving with solemn regularity along its surface. It seems to have been at night that the piety of the psalmist was awakened by this contemplation, when the moon and the stars were visible, and not when the Sun had risen in his strength, and thrown a splendour around him, which bore down and eclipsed all the lesser glories of the fir mament; and there is much in the scenery of a nocturnal sky to lift the soul to pious contemplation. That moon and these stars what are they? They are detached from the world, and they lift you above it. You feel withdrawn from the earth, and rise in lofty abstraction above this little theatre of human passions and human anxieties. The mind abandons itself to reverie, and is transferred in the ecstasy of its thoughts to distant and unexplored regions. It sees Nature in the simplicity of her great elements, and it sees the God of Nature invested with the high attributes of wisdom and majesty. Chalmers.
V. THE QUEEN OF FRANCE.
Marie Antoinette, daughter of the Empress Maria Theresa, and Queen of Louis XVI. guillotined 1793.
It is now sixteen or seventeen years since I saw the Queen of France, then the dauphiness, at Versailles; and surely never lighted on this orb, which she hardly seemed to touch,
a more delightful vision. I saw her just above the horizon, decorating and cheering the elevated sphere she had just begun to move in,-glittering like the morning star; full of life, and splendour, and joy.
Oh, what a revolution! and what a heart must I have to contemplate, without emotion, that elevation and that fall!
Little did I dream that, when she added titles of veneration to those of enthusiastic, distant, respectful love, that she should ever be obliged to carry the sharp antidote against disgrace concealed in that bosom ;-little did I dream that I should have lived to see such disasters fallen upon her in a nation of gallant men,-in a nation of men of honour and of cavaliers. I thought ten thousand swords must have leaped from their scabbards to avenge even a look, that threatened her with insult. But the age of chivalry is gone. That of sophisters, economists, and calculators, has succeeded; and the glory of Europe is extinguished for ever. Never, never, more, shall we behold that generous loyalty to rank and sex, -that proud submission, that dignified obedience, that subordination of the heart, which kept alive even in servitude itself, the spirit of an exalted freedom. The unbought grace of life, the cheap defence of nations, the nurse of manly sentiment and heroic enterprise is gone: It is gone,—that sensibility of principle,-that chastity of honour, which felt a stain like a wound,--which inspired courage whilst it mitigated ferocity, which ennobled whatever it touched; and under which vice itself lost half its evil, by losing all its grossness. Burke.
VI.-WESTMINSTER HALL-TRIAL OF WARREN HASTINGS.
Warren Hastings was impeached by the House of Commons before the House of Lords, for misgovernment, extortion, and oppression, while he held the office of Governor-General of India. The trial lasted seven years. He was acquitted; but sen. tenced to pay the costs, which amounted to £71,000. The extract refers to the opening scene of the trial.
THE preparations for the trial had proceeded rapidly; and on
the 13th of February 1788, the sittings of the Court commenced. There have been spectacles more dazzling to the eye, more gorgeous with jewelry and cloth of gold, more attractive to grown-up children, than that which was then exhibited at Westminster; but, perhaps there never was a spectacle so well calculated to strike a highly cultivated, a reflecting, an imaginative mind. All the various kinds of interest which belong to the near and to the distant, to the present and to the past, were collected on one spot, and in one hour. All the talents and all the accomplishments which are developed by liberty and civilisation were now displayed, with every advantage that could be derived from co-operation and from contrast. Every step in the proceedings carried the mind either backward, through many troubled centuries, to the days when the foundations of the constitution were laid; or far away, over boundless seas and deserts, to dusky nations of India, living under strange stars, worshipping strange gods, and writing strange characters from right to left. The High Court of Parliament was to sit, according to forms handed down from the days of the Plantagenets, on an Englishman accused of exercising tyranny over the lord of the holy city of Benares, and over the ladies of the princely house of Oude.
The place was worthy of such a trial. It was the great hall of William Rufus; the hall which had resounded with acclamations at the inauguration of thirty kings; the hall where the eloquence of Strafford had for a moment awed and melted a victorious party inflamed with just resentment; the hall where the First Charles had confronted the High Court of Justice with the placid courage which has half redeemed his fame. Neither military nor civil pomp was wanting. The avenues were lined with grenadiers. The streets were kept clear by cavalry. The peers robed in gold and ermine, were marshalled by the heralds under Garter-King-at-Arms. The judges, in their vestments of state, attended to give advice on points of law. Near a hundred and seventy lords, three-fourths of the Upper House, walked in solemn order from their usual place of assembling to the tribunal. The long procession was closed by the Duke of Norfolk, Earl Marshal of the realm, by the great dignitaries, and by the brothers and sons of the King. Last of all came the Prince of Wales, conspicuous by his fine person and noble bearing.
The grey old walls were hung with scarlet. The long gal leries were crowded by such an audience as has rarely excited the fears or the emulation of an orator. There were gathered together, from all parts of a great, free, and enlightened realm, grace and female loveliness, wit and learning, the representatives of every science and of every art. There were seated round the Queen the fair-haired young daughters of the House of Brunswick. There the Ambassadors of great Kings and Commonwealths gazed with admiration on a spectacle which no other country in the world could present. There Siddons, in the prime of her majestic beauty, looked with emotion on the scene. There the historian of the Roman Empire thought of the days when, before a senate which had still some show of freedom, Cicero and Tacitus thundered against the oppressors of Sicily and Africa. There were seen, side by side, the greatest painter and the greatest scholar of the age-Reynolds and Parr.
The Sergeants made proclamation. Hastings advanced to the bar and bent his knee. The culprit was indeed not unworthy of that great presence. He had ruled an extensive and populous country, had made laws and treaties, had sent forth armies, had set up and pulled down princes. And in his high place he had so borne himself, that all had feared him, most had loved him, and hatred itself could deny him no title to glory, except virtue. He looked like a great man, and not like a bad man.. A person small and emaciated, yet deriving dignity from a carriage which, while it indicated. deference to the Court, indicated also habitual self-possession and self-respect ;-a high and intellectual forehead;-a brow pensive, but not gloomy;-a mouth of inflexible decision ;a face pale and worn, but serene ;-such was the aspect with which the great proconsul presented himself to his judges.
His counsel accompanied him,-men, all of whom were afterwards raised by their talents and learning to the highest posts in their profession.
But neither the culprit nor his advocates attracted so much notice as the accusers. In the midst of the blaze of red drapery, a space had been fitted up with green benches and tables for the Commons. The managers, with Burke at their head, appeared in full dress. Even Fox, generally so regardless of his appearance, had paid to the illustrous tribunal the compliment of wearing a bag and sword. Pitt had refused
to be one of the conductors of the impeachment. But there stood Fox and Sheridan. There was Burke, in amplitude of comprehension and richness of imagination, superior to every orator, ancient or modern. There appeared the finest gentleman of the age-his face beaming with intelligence and spirit -the ingenious, the high-souled Windham. Nor, though surrounded by such men, did the youngest manager pass unnoticed. Those who have listened with delight, till the morning sun shone on the tapestries of the House of Lords, to the lofty and animated eloquence of Charles Earl Grey, are able to form some estimate of the powers of a race of men among whom he was not the foremost. Macaulay.
THE late Rev. Legh Richmond was once speaking at a meeting at Edinburgh, for the advancement of religion among sailors, when he related the following facts :
When I reflect on the character and circumstances of seamen, I cannot, without peculiar interest, recollect the time when a young man went to sea, whose feelings were ill suited to all the contingencies of a sea-faring life. I remember that the time came when it was said that the vessel in which he had sailed had been wrecked, and that the young man was dead, and no intimation had reached the ears of his affectionate parents of any change in his views as to the things of God. And I remember the time when that young man was so far restored again to his family, that although they saw him not, they heard that he had been saved from the shipwreck. That young man, too, was found by the blessed God while on the ocean, with the Bible only, which his father, at parting, had put into his hand. It was blessed to him in the midst of the carnal companions by whom he was surrounded. This means of grace, without any human instruction, was made effectual to the salvation of his soul. The time came when that young man, who had been a foe to religion, lifted up, in the Bay of Gibraltar, at his mast-head, a Bethel flag, and summoned his sailors to prayer, and prayed. with them, and bade the missionary exhort them.-And when