Images de page
PDF
ePub

understood by Virgil, when he made a sepulchre thereof, in his translating the matter into his ninth Æneid, because he had not read the account which the Scripture gives about Og's "bedstead of Iron.” 'Tis as clear that Apollo, who was anciently called Pæan, or an healer, is the same with Joshua, whose name is of a like signification; and Apollo was called Ancæus, likewise; but in commemoration of Joshua's exploits against the Anakim; the Phænicai, being also but Bene-Anak, or the sons of Anak in the first original. They by whom Typhon was combated, came out of Egypt, and so did the armies of Joshua; an hero, of whose mother, because we read nothing, she must be called Antw, or Letona, a Latendo.* Cadmus, the Gibeonite, carrying a colony into Græcia, did use there to remember the victories of Joshua, in such hymns as they had learned from their new masters in Canaan; and of those hymns, it is probable, the hundred and thirty-fifth Psalm in our Psalter might be one; yea, the Græcian, casheu Is Isot used in their Pæanisms, might be but rude remembrances of the Hallelujahs anciently used in these hymns of Israel.

Reader, 'twas not unto a Delphos, but unto a Shiloh, that the planters of New-England have been making their progress, and King Philip is not the only Python that has been giving them obstruction in their passage and progress thereunto. But if Infælix Exitus Persecutorum is any note of the true church, I am sure New-England has a true church to people it; for all the serpents, yea, or giants, that formerly molested that religious plantation, found themselves engaged in a fatal enterprize. We have by a true and plain history secured the story of our successes against all the Oys in this woody country from falling under the disguises of mythology; but it administers to us the reflection which has been often made, that as of old the ruins that still overtook the persecutors of the poor Picardines caused men to say, “If a man be weary of his life, let him become an enemy to the Picardines!" The like ruins have overwhelmed them that have persecuted the poor New Englanders. And we will not conceal the name of the God our Saviour, as an heathen country sometimes would, Ne ab hostibus evocatus, alio Commigraret:8 No, 'tis our Lord Jesus Christ, worshipped according to the rules of his blessed gospel, who is the great Phoebus, that “SUN of righteousness," who hath so saved his churches from the designs of the "generations of the dragon.” 'Tis to our Lord Jesus Christ that we offer up our hallelujahs !—But it must, after all, be confessed, that we have had one enemy more pernicious to us than all the rest, and that is "our own backsliding heart," which has plunged the whole country into so wonderful a degeneracy, that I have sometimes been discouraged from writing the church-history of the country, lest

-Mulier Formosa, super ne,

Desinat in Piscem. 11 * Latona, from “latere,” to conceal. + A shout of triumph. Fearful is the end of persecutors. $ Lest he should be over-persuaded, by the adulations and offerings of the foe, to desert to them. i Incongruous art should make the statue show | Venus above-a reptile's form below.

And since this degeneracy has obtained so much among us, the wrath of Heaven bas raised up against us a succession of other adversaries and calamities, which have cast the land into great confusions; to rescue us from which the jealous kindness of Heaven has not made such quick descents as in former times. Alas! that my reader must now tell me,

Cæpisti melius quam desinis, ultima Primis

Distant.*For which cause I now conclude our church-history, leaving to the churches of New England, for their admonition, an observation which the renowned Commenius has made upon the famous churches of Bohemia, “that they were nearer to the sanctuary than other churches, by reason of a more pure discipline professed and embraced among them; and therefore, when they came to be depraved with apostasies, the Lord poured out his righteous displeasure upon them, and quickly made them sad examples to the other churches of the Reformation."

God knows what will be the END.

APPENDIX.

Derruniain Luctuosa m:t

AN HISTORY OF REMARKABLE OCCURRENCES IN THE LONG WAR,

WHICH NEW-ENGLAND HATH HAD WITH THE INDIAN SALVAGES,

FROM THE YEAR 1688 TO THE YEAR 1698, FAITHFULLY COMPOSED AND IMPROVED

THE SECOND EDITION.

THE DEDICATION PREFACED UNTO THE FIRST EDITION.

To the PEOPLE OF New-ENGLAND.—Sirs: You are welcome unto the history of a tedious war and unto a period of that war so far in prospect, as to render its history seasonable.

Every reasonable man will readily allow that it is a duty to God, and a service to the world, for to preserve the memory of such matters as have been the more memorable occurrences in the way that has for ten years together been multiplying changes and sorrows upon us. And the author in whose historical writings the most inquisitive envy has never to this hour detected so much a one voluntary and material mistake, or one farthing paid unto the readers in the coin of Candid has now chosen to preserve the memory of these matters while they are fresh and new, and on hath not fifty years, which is the channel of the river of oblivion, to pass over unto them. Tha expedition is used in the publication of our Decennium Luctuosum, in hope that, if any mistak worth noting do appear in these writings, it may like, and perhaps with,a second edition," } “corrected and amended."

He expects no thanks for his essays to do good, in this way or any other, unto any part of h country, to whom he would gladly devote all his talents, if he were a thousand times better talerie than he is; and though the most ungrateful treats imaginable (which are too well known by the

* Thy last scarce keeps the promise of thy first;
Thy laller end is certainly thy worst.

† A Melancholy Decade.

name of "country-pay") should be given him, he would still be of that opinion, Recte fecisse Merces est : “ if a man may do good, it is enough."

All the favour he desires of you is, that you would not enquire after him; or ask, “who he is ?" but that he is at best but an obscure person, he may continue in yet more obscurity : which will be a greater pleasure to him than to be placed among the great men of Achaia. For, indeed, he hath often thought on a passage written by holy Mr. Row to his excellent son: “I pray that God would make use of my self and you, in such a way as that God only may be seen, and we not be taken notice of at all; that he may have the glory and we may not be seen.”

Could he have invited his ExcELLENCY unto such a glorious table as that in a certain cabinet at Florence, which is furnished with birds and flow'rs, all consisting of neatly polished jewels inlaid into it—a work fifteen years in making, and worth an hundred thousand crowns; or could he have written a book worthy to be laid up in the cabinet of Darius, the author might have been under a temptation to have had his name engraved upon his work. But a little boild Indian corn in a tray is as much as our best history of an Indian war, compos'd perhaps in fewer days than there were years in the war, may presume to be compar'd unto. And since our history will not afford such a diversion unto his excellency, under the indispositions of his health, as those of Livy and Curtius did unto the princes that recovered their lost health by reading them; nor can any passage here be 80 happy, as that which cured Laurentius Medices of a malady by having it read unto him: it will require no more than a nameless writer to assure that great person on this occasion, that all the good people of New-England make their fervent vows unto the Almighty, for his excellencies prosperity, and the welfare of his excellent lady, and of his noble and hopeful offspring.

And the naming of the author is as little necessary to qualifie him, that he may pay publick acknowledgments unto the honourable the Lieutenant Governour; not only for his cares about the publick, while it was tempestuated with the Indian war, which now makes an history; but chiefly for his more than ordinary tenderness of that society, which has been the very decus ac Tutamen* of New-England. The nameless writer of this history may report, that with a greater expense than that of the first founder, this honourable person proves that he loves our nation, by building us another edifice for the supply of all our synagouges, and STOUGHTON-HALL outshines HARVARDCOLLEDGE: and he speaks kinder language, as well as better Latin, than that eminent statesman in Flanders, whose answer to a petition for the priviledges of an University there to be restored, was, Non curamus vostros privilegios.t This report may he give, without being obliged for to confess any other name than this, which he readily confesses : “One that was once a Member of Harvard-Colledge."

I pray, sirs, ask no further ; let this writing be like that on the wall to Belshazzar, where the hand only was to be seen, and not whose it was. The history is compiled with incontestable reracity; and since there is no ingenuity in it, but less than what many pens in the land might command, he knows not why his writing anonimously may not shelter him from the inconveniences of having any notice one way or other taken of him. Though, among his other small furniture, he hath not left himself unfurnished with skill in the Spanish language, yet he never could bring himself to the belief of the Spanish proverb, Quien no parece perece; i. e. He that appears not, perishes;" he that shows not himself to the world, is undone. At Milain there is an academy of sensible persons, called, the Nascosti; or,“ hidden men;" at Venice there is one of such persons called, the Incogniti ;t and at Parma there is one of them, called, the Innominati.$ If there were nothing else disagreeable in them, the author of this history would be glad of an admission into such an academy.

The history is indeed of no very fine thread; and the readers, who every where “fish for nothing but carps,” and who love, like Augustus, lo "tax all the world” may find fault enough with it. Nevertheless, while the fault of an untruth can't be found in it, the author pretends that the famous history of the Trojan war it self comes behind our little history of the Indian war; for the best antiquaries have now confuled Homer; the walls of Troy were, it seems, all made of Poet's paper; and the siege of the town, with the tragedies of the wooden horse, were all but a piece of poetry.

And if a war between us and an handful of Indians do appear no more than a Batrachomyomachiell to the world abroad, yet unto us at home it hath been considerable enough to make an history.

Glory and protection. + We do not care for your privileges. Unknown 8 Nameless. | Battle of Frogs and Mice-a poem attributed to Homer.

Nor is the author afraid of promising, that of all the thirty articles which may make up this hi-icry, there shall not be one without something in it that may by our selves be justly thought considerable.

Should any Petit Monsieur complain, (as the captain that found not himself in the tapestry hangings, which exhibited the story of the Spanish invasion in 1588) that he don't find himself mentioned in this history, the author has this apology: he has done as well, and as much as he could, that whatever was worthy of a mention, might have it; and if this collection of matters le not compleat, yet he supposes it may be more compleat than any one else hath made; and now he hath done, he hath not pull'd up the ladder after him; others may go on as they please with a compleater composure.

If the author had taken delight in this history, and at all times to celebrate the merits of such as have deserv'd well of his country, (which he has here done, it may be, for some that never could afford him a good word !)—especially, if he do erect statues for dead worthies, when there is no room left for flattery, (for who will bestow paint upon a dead face!)—and if he do all this with all possible concern to avoid casting aspersions upon others; why should any betray such ill nature as to be angry at it? • My good country, forgive him this injury !"

Huic uni forsan poteram succumbere culpe.* But whatever this history be, it aims at the doing of good, as well as the telling of trutk; and if its aim shall be attained, that will be a sufficient reward for all the trouble of writing it. When he desires any more, he'll give you his name. In the mean time, as a far greater man once was called Ludovicus nihili, which you may make Lewis of Nothingham; so the author will count himself not a little favoured, if he may pass for one of no more account than a no-body; which would certainly make a very blamelcss person of him.

However, that the history may not altogether want a subscription, the author, finding it a cotom among the Christian writers of the Orient, when they have written a treatise, to subscribe it after this manner: Scriptum per servum vilem pauperem, omnibus justitiis privatum, peccatorem magis quam omnis caro :f or, Scripsit hoc pauper N. N.;f or, Est scriptura serti pauperis and qui benevolentia dei indiget, et miserationibus ; & he will accordingly subscribe himself, “THE CHIEF OY SINNERS.” Nevertheless, he will humbly lay claim to the words used by the nameless author of a treatise entituled, “ The Faithful Steward :" Tho' I am worse than they speak of me who cast disgrace upon me, and I can espy ten faults in my self where they can discern one ; yet I can, thro' grace, appeal to thee, O Lord, with some comfort, that I am displeased with my self for my sins, and I would fain please thee in all things, at all times, in all places, and in every condition.

DECENNIUM LUCTUOSUM;

OR, THE REMARKABLES OF A LONG WAR WITH INDIAN SALYAGES

Nobis in arcto, et inglorius Labor.ll-Tacir.

INTRODUCTION. TWENTY-THREE years have rouled away since the nations of Indians within the confines of New-England generally began a fierce war upon the English inhabitants of that country, The flame of war then raged thro' a great part of the country, whereby many whole towns were laid in ashes, and many lives were sacrificed. But in little more than one year's time the united colonies of Plymouth, Massachusetts, and Connecticut, with their united endeave ours bravely conquered the salvages. The evident hand of Heaven appearing on the side of a people, whose hope and help was alone in the Almighty “ Lord of Hosts," extinguished whole nations of the salvages at such a rate, that there can hardly any of them now be found under any distinction upon the face of the earth. Only the fate of our northern and enstern

+ Perchance I might forgive this single fault. + Written by a poor menn slave, devoid of all righteousness, and a greater sinner than all filesh beside.

Written by poor N. N. Written by a poor slave, who noeds the loving-kindness and pity of God. | Our toil is in a contracted field, and inglorious.

regions in that war was very different from that of the rest. The desolations of the war huud overwhelmed all the settlements to the north-east of Wells. And when the time arrived that all hands were weary of the war, a sort of a peace was patched up, which left a body of Indians, not only with horrible murders unrevenged, but also in the possession of no little part of the country, with circumstances which the English might not think very

honorable. Upon this peace, the English returned unto their plantations; their number increased; they stucked their farms, and sowed their fields; they found the air as healthful, as the earth wis fruitful; their lumber and their fishery became a considerable merchandise; continual accessions were made unto them, until ten or a dozen towns in the province of Main, and the county of Cornwall, were suddenly started up into something of observation.

But in the year 1688, the Indians which dwelt after the Indian manner among them, commenced another war upon these plantations, which hath broke them up, and strangely held us in play for ten years together. In these ten years there hath been a variety of “remarkable occurrences;" and because I have supposed that a relation of those occurrences may be acceptable and profitable to some of my countrymen, I shall now, “with all faithfulness,” endeavour it—“with all faithfulness,” I say; because, though there should happen any cir. cumstantial mistake in our story, (for 'tis a rare thing for any two men concerned in the same action, to give the story of it without some circumstantial difference,) yet even this also I shall be willing to retract and correct, if there be found any just occasion! But for any one material error in the whole composure, I challenge the most sagacious malice upon earth to detect it, while matters are yet so fresh as to allow the detection of it. I disdain to make the apology once made by the Roman historian, Nemo Historicus non aliquid mentitus, et habiturus sum mendaciorum comites, quos Historiæ et eloquentiæ miramur authores. * No; I will write with an irreproachable and incontestable veracity; and I will write not one thing but what I am furnished with so good authority for, that any reasonable man, who will please to examine it, shall say, “I do well to insert it as I do:" And I will hope that my reader hath not been studying of Godefridus de Valle’s book,“ De Arte Nihil Credendi;". about “ The Art of Believing Nothing.” Wherefore having at the very beginning thus given such a knock upon thy head, O Malice, that thou canst never with reason hiss at our history, we will proceed unto the several articles of it.

ARTICLE I.

THE OCCASION AND BEGINNING OF THE WAR.

IF Diodorus Siculus had never given it as a great rule of history, historiæ primum studium, primariaque consideratio esse videtur, insoliti gravisque casus principio causas investigare,t yet my reader would have expected that I should begin the history of our war with an history of the occurrences and occasions which did begin the war. Now, reader, I am at the very first fallen upon a difficult point; and I am in danger of pulling a war upon myself, by endeavouring of thy satisfaction. In truth, I had rather be called a coward, than undertake myself to determine the truth in this matter; but having armed myself with some good authority for it, I will transcribe two or three reports of the matter now in my hands, and leave it unto thy own determination.

* There is no historian who has not told some falsehoods, and I shall have as my companions in mendacity those whom all admire as models of historic truth and eloquence.

+ It seems to be the first object and primary consideration with historians, to investigate the original causes of every great and unusual calamity.

« PrécédentContinuer »