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duty, which remained with him while still in doubt, denial, or indifference, now blooms out into ardor of love, and tenderness of pity, for all mankind.
His New Faith And Love.
Foreshadows, call them rather fore-splendors, of that truth and beginning of truths, feil mysteriously upon my soul. Sweeter than day-spring to the shipwrecked iu Nova Zembla; ah! like the mother's voice to her little child that strays bewildered, weeping, in unknown tumults; like soft streamings of celestial music to my too-exasperated heart, came that evangel. The universe is not dead and demoniacal, a charnel-house with spectres; but godlike, and my Father's! With other eyes, too, could I now look upon my fellow-man; with an infinite love, an infinite pity. Poor, wandering, wayward man! Art thou not tried, and beaten with stripes, even as I am? Ever, whether thou bear the Royal mantle or the beggar's gabardine, art thou not so weary, so heavy-laden; and thy bed of rest is but a grave. 0, my brother, my brother, why cannot I shelter thee in my bosom, and wipe away all tears from thy eyes!—Truly, the din of manyvoiced life, which, in this solitude, with the mind's organ, I could hear, was no longer a maddening discord, but a melting one; like inarticulate cries, and sobbings of a dumb creature, which in the ear of heaven are prayers. The poor earth, with her poor joys, was now my needy mother, not my cruel step-dame; man, with his so mad wants and so mean endeavors, had become the dearer to me; and even for his sufferings and his sins, I now first named him brother. Thus was I standiug in the porch of that "Sanctuary of sorrow," by strange, steep ways, had I too been guided thither; and ere long its sacred gates would open,and the "Divine depth of sorrow" be disclosed to me.
The words quoted by Carlyle in this passage are from Goethe. To this fathomless depth of affection for men—this passionate sympathy with his kind—was Carlyle led by him who is generally represented as a cold-hearted self-worshipper, a preacher of no Gospel more human or more Divine than culture. Nearly half a century after this passage was written, Carlyle addressed the students of Edinburgh University as their lord rector, and then again, after having tested its worth in a life of heroic labor, he deliberate!}' referred to Goethe's in
terpretation of the moral significance of Christianity and doctrine of the reverence due by man to his God, to his brethren, and to himself, as what he would rather have written than any other passage in recent literature. "It is only with renunciation," says the great poet and philosopher, who is supposed to have been hewn from ice, and to have had no object in life but to polish himself up, so that the ice might show to advantage—"it is only with renunciation that life, properly speaking, can be said to begin." Such, adopted from Goethe, is the moral teaching of Carlyle in Sartor Resartus.
The Everlasting Yea.
"I see a glimpse of it!" cries he elsewhere; there is in man a higher than love of happiness; he can do without happiness, and instead thereof find blessedness! Was it not to preach forth this same higher that sages and martyrs, the poet and the priest, in all times, have spoken and suffered; bearing testimony, through life and through death, of the godliko that is in man, and how in the godlike only has he strength and freedom? Which God-inspired doctrine art thou honored to be taught; 0 heavens! and broken with manifold merciful afflictions, even till thou become contrite, and learn it! 0 thank thy destiny for these; thankfully bear what yet remain; thou hadst need of them; the self in thee needed to be annihilated. By benignant fever-paroxysms is life rooting out the deepseated chronic disease, and triumphs over death. On the roaring billows of time thou art not ingulfed, but borne aloft into the azure of eternity. Love not pleasure; love God. This is the EVERLASTING YEA, wherein all contradiction is solved; wherein whoso walks and works, it is well with him.
Such is the main purport of this great and glorious book. There is much more in it that might be profitably dwelt upon, but its fundamental ideas have now, I think, been placed before the reader. Sartor Resartus is the grandest counterblast ever blown to the materialism of the age. Its doctrine of spirit is not only essentially and imperishably true, but the fundamental truth of all right religion and all sound philosophy.
HI3 HISTORY OF THE FRENCH REVOLUTION.
TT is agreed by all judges that the French Revolution, which occupied the last ten years of the eighteenth century, was the most important event in recent history; that it furnished a new point of departure in social and political evolution; that its effects arc still everywhere apparent, that its force is unexhausted, and that the conditions of our modern life are largely what it has determined.
This great fact manifestly attracted the attention of Carlyle from his boyish years. The talk of his elders, when he was a child at their knee, would be of that huge convulsion which had reached its central paroxysms three or four years before he was born, and of that soldier of genius who was even then beginning to bind its raging energies within the iron bands of military discipline. From his fifth to his twentieth year he would hear of battles, battles, battles, the air around him never ceasing to vibrate with the thunders of the slowly-retreating storm. The boy of ten was old enough to understand the shrinking of Europe under the fierce blaze of the sun of Austerlitz; the youth of twenty shared the intense joy with which his countrymen saw Napoleon's sun eclipsed at Waterloo. It was natural, therefore, that his imagmation should be fired by the French Revolution, and that, when he had attained maturity of manhood, in the sense of having constructed a working theory of life and affairs — come to terms with necessity, as he would himself word it, appeased his doubts and cleared decks for action — a concurrence of motives, from duty dowc MEANING OF THE FRENCH REVOLUTION.
to ambition, should lead him to select the French Revolution as the subject of his first historical work.
He regarded the subject, besides, with a philosophical and religious interest. We saw the transcendent importance which he attached to the principles laid down in Sartor Resartus; and the French Revolution furnished him, from what he styles the Bible of world-history, with an impressive text on which to preach a practical sermon illustrative of those principles. Happily, we are able to state in his own words the general conception he had formed of the French Revolution; after what has been said, the reader can have no difficulty iu apprehending their significance. Sans-cnlottism, I may mention, is a term which has been adopted, both on the Continent and in Great Britain, to indicate the sovereignty of the multitude in its broadest and rudest form.
Meaning Of The French Revolution.
The French Revolution means here the open "violent rebellion and victory of disimprisoned anarchy against corrupt worn-out authority; how anarchy breaks prison; bursts up from the infinite deep, and rages uncontrollable, immeasurable, enveloping a world; in phasis after phasis of fever-frenzy—till the frenzy burning itself out, and what elements of new order it held (since all force holds such), developing themselves, the uncontrollable be got, if not reimprisoned, yet harnessed, and its mad forces made to work toward their object as sane regulated ones. For as hierarchies and dynasties of all kinds, theocracies, aristocracies, autocracies, strumpetocracies, have ruled over the world; so it was appointed, in the decrees of Providence, that this same victorious anarchy, Jacobinism, Sansculottism, French Revolution, horrors of French Revolution, or what else mortals name it, should have its turn. The "destructive wrath" of Sansculottism; this is what we speak, having, unhappily, no voice for singing.
Surely a great phenomenon; nay, it is a transcendental one, overstepping all rules and experience; the crowning phenomenon of our modern time. For here again, most unexpectedly, comes antique fanaticism in new and newest vesture; miraculous, as all fanaticism is. Call it the fanaticism of "making away with formulas, de humer les formules." The world of formulas, the formed regulated world, which all habitable world is, must needs hate such fanaticism like death; and be at deadly variance with it. The world of formulas must conquer it; or failing that, must die execrating it, anathematizing it;—can nevertheless in nowise prevent its being and its having been. The anathemas are there, and the miraculous Thing is there.
Whence it cometh? Whither it goeth? These are questions! When the age of miracles lay faded into the distance as an incredible tradition, and even the age of conventionalities was now old; and man's existence had for long generations rested on mere formulas which were grown hollow by course of time; and it seemed as if no reality any longer existed, but only phantasms of realities, and God's universe were the work of the tailor and upholsterer mainly, and men were buckram masks that went about becking and grimacing there—on a sudden, the earth yawns asunder, and amidst Tartarean smoke, and glare of fierce brightness, rises SANS-CULOTTISM, many-headed, fire-breathing, and asks: What think ye olmef Well may the buckram masks start together, terror-struck; "into expressive, well-concerted groups!" It is, indeed, friends, a most singular, most fatal thing. Let whosoever is but buckram and a phantasm look to it; ill, verily, may it fare with him; here, methinks, he cannot much longer be. Woe, also, to many a one who is not wholly buckram, but partially real and human! The age of miracles has come back. "Behold the world-phoenix, in fire-consummation and fire-creation: wide are her fanning wings; loud is her death-melody, of battle - thunders and falling towns; skyward lashes the funeral flame, enveloping all things: it is the death-birth of a world!"
Whereby, however, as we often say, shall one unspeakable blessing seem attainable. This mainly: that man and his life rest no more on hollowness and a lie, but on solidity and some kind of truth. Weleome the beggarliest truth, so it be one, in exchange for the royallest sham! Truth of any kind breeds ever new and better truth; thus hard granite rock will crumble down into soil, under the blessed skyey influences; and cover itself with verdure, with fruitage, and umbrage. But, as for falsehood, which, in like contrary manner, grows ever falser—what can it, or what should it do but decease, being ripe; decompose itself, gently or even violently, and return to the father of it—too probably in flames of fire?
Sans-culottism will burn much; but what is incombustible it will not burn. Fear not sans-culottism; recognize it for what it is, the portentous inevitable end of much, the miraculous beginning of much. One other thing thou mayest understand of it: that it, too, came from God; for has