Alexander—But if I have taken like a king, I have given like a king. If I have overthrown empires, I have founded greater. I have cherished arts, commerce, and philosophy.
Robber—I too have freely given to the poor what I took from the rich. I know, indeed, very little of the philosophy you speak of, but I believe neither you nor I shall ever atone to the world for the mischief we have done it.
Alexander—Leave me. Take off his chains, and use him well. Are we, then, so much alike? Alexander like a robber? Let me reflect.
THE AMERICAN INDIAN
Not many generations ago, where you now sit, surrounded with all that makes life happy, the rank thistle nodded in the wind, and the wild fox dug his hole unscared. Here lived and loved another race of beings. Beneath the same sun that rolls over your heads, the Indian hunter pursued the panting deer; he gazed on the same moon that smiles for you, and here too the Indian lover wooed his dusky mate.
Here the wigwam blaze beamed on the tender and helpless, the council fire glared on the wise and daring. Here they warred; and when the strife was over, here curled the smoke of peace.
Here, too, they worshiped; and from many a dark bosom went up a pure prayer to the Great Spirit. He had written His laws for them, not on tables of stone, but He had traced them on the tables of their hearts. The poor child of nature knew not the God of revelation, but the God of the Universe he acknowledged in everything around.
He beheld Him in the star that sunk in beauty behind his lonely dwelling; in the flower that swayed in the morning breeze; in the lofty trees as well as in the worm that crawled at his feet.
All this has passed away. Four hundred years have changed the face of this great continent, and this peculiar race has been well-nigh blotted out. Art has taken the place of simple nature, and civilization has been too strong for the savage tribes of the red man.
Here and there a few Indians remain; but these are merely the degraded offspring of this once noble race of men.
There is a land, of every land the pride,
Beloved by Heaven o’er all the world beside,
Where brighter suns dispense serener light,
And milder moons imparadise the night.
O land of beauty, virtue, valor, truth,
Time-tutored age, and love-exalted youth!
The wandering mariner, whose eye explores
The wealthiest isles, the most enchanting shores,
Views not a realm so bountiful and fair,
Nor breathes the spirit of a purer air.
In every clime, the magnet of his soul,
Touched by remembrance, trembles to that pole;
For, in this land of Heaven’s peculiar