« PrécédentContinuer »
be little less than infallible. Beasts of prey will be extirpated; or they will be awed by the neighborhood and by the power of man. The inhabitants of every city will sleep, unapprehensive of the dagger of the assassin; such as travel the public, and such as pursue the most private, road, will alike be secure from the lawless assault of the robber; and those, who traverse the trackless ocean, will navigate their ships, and conduct their traffic, without recurring to any measures of defence against the desperate enterprises of the pirate. Capital punishments will be annulled. Maxims of false honor will no longer give birth to duelling, nor despair to suicide. Men will not be sacrificed, as obstinate heretics, or as expiatory victims, at the suggestion of the bigot or the fanatic. From successive improvements in the structure and the management of ships; from a more complete and accurate knowlege of seas, and rocks, and winds; from the practical precautions suggested by the great advances, which will doubtless be made in electricity; as well as from the ideas, which will generally prevail of the high value to be set on human life, and the criminality of a wanton exposure of it to the hazard of destruction; a hope may not irrationally be entertained, that the fury of the tempest will be disarmed of half its force, that the lightning will lose much of its terrors, and that in consequence, the relics of ship-wrecked vessels will scarcely ever be cast even upon the most dangerous or the most commercial shores. The torch of civil dissention and of domestic treason will be extinguished; and, the causes of the hostility of nations being annihilated, or their interfering interests being adjusted by mutual concession and amicable negotiation, no longer will thousands of the human race be collected together to slaughter each other, upon the field of battle, or upon the bosom of the deep. Nor will a Nor will a pacific behavior be confined to those nations alone, which are entitled civilized. The various tribes of savages, that inhabit the less frequented climes, having undergone a revolution in their manners and their situation, will relinquish the use of the
arrow and the spear, the battle-axe and the scalping-knife. In the treatment of diseases, and in the cure of wounds, ignorance and inexperience will cease to be a fruitful source of the destruction of life; and no longer will men be swept away in crowds by those contagious disorders, which care and skill are capable of remedying. Nor will they prematurely destroy themselves by a course of debauchery, or by habits of intoxication.
Sorrow and pain, also, in comparison of the ascendant they formerly had upon the globe, may be said to be excluded from it; for with the former things, which are, passed away, with Bad Government and False Religion, not only war, discord, and pestilence will, in a great degree, be banished from the world; but also those other evils which naturally flow from the same sources, sloth and ignorance, hypocrisy and persecution, superstition and infidelity, excessive poverty and intemperate labor.