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In America we have therefore to deal with the only possible form of government, viz.: a democratic Republic. It is useless to attempt judging this by our own standard.

"I find," says De Tocqueville, 1" that a great number of my contemporaries undertake to make a certain selection from among the institutions, the opinions, and the ideas which originated in the aristocratic constitution of society as it was; a portion of these elements they would willingly relinquish, but they would keep the remainder and transplant them into their new world. I apprehend that such men are wasting their time and their strength in unprofitable efforts. We have not to seek to make ourselves like our progenitors, but to strive to work out that species of greatness and happiness which is our own."

But this is precisely the spirit which English writers too often fail to recognize in American institutions. They bring everything found there to in English standard of taste and opinion, and pronounce accordingly.

Now, whatever is good or bad in the American

1 “Demoracy in America,” ii. 354 (American edition).

character, and not common to all other nations, is the result of a new order of society. Though sprung from the Anglo-Saxon race, and continually receiving from it fresh accessions, new principles of political action, especially democratic equality, a different climate and a widely-extended territory have so engrafted new habits and modes of thought upon the original stock, that in the new fruit it is difficult to find a trace of the old.

It signifies little that their practical and material philosophy finds expression in the same language as our own-that Bacon, and Milton, and Shakspeare, are no less venerated by them than ourselves. These act upon a distinct order of mind. We are now essentially two nations, and the same rules of criticism will not apply to both. But there may be still friendship and alliance between us; and these may be all the close because the monotony of race has been effectually subdued.

Of all the books which the present civil war in America has produced, we must pronounce the work of Mr. James Spence, on "The

American Union," as at once the most brilliant and the most mischievous. It has already reached its fourth edition. A writer in the Quarterly Review "can hardly speak too highly of it, and recommends it to all who wish to make themselves acquainted with the facts of the great American controversy, which are so often obscured by passion and distorted by interest." The editor of All the Year Round has most admirably epitomized the book for those too busy to read it for themselves. He says, "Mr. Spence has assembled facts and authorities in masterly support of his reasoning, and has grouped them with a temperate and logical clearness that cannot fail to convince. He writes with the discretion of a judge who has all the evidence before him, strong and honest in his own conviction." Indeed, every review that we have seen has more or less adopted Mr. Spence's facts and authorities as if beyond dispute, and apparently without inquiry.

The Americans have certainly not been fortunate in their judge. Mr. Spence's work is a comprehensive condemnation of all that constitutes their National life and character.

Their Constitution is a mistake their politics lax-their public morality degraded-their justice corrupted-their history perverted, and their patriotic pride a gross exaggeration. "The trail of the serpent is over it all."

Talent, Literature, and Respectability retire despairing from the scene, disgusted with the present, and hopeless for the future.

Mr. Spence has based his condemnation broadly enough. His philosophy seems to be that history invariably repeats itself. Hence, it is but to trace the experience of the past, and estimate the tendencies of the present, in order to cast the horoscope of the future. Thus, he sweeps the records of history from the fabulous ages down to the present time for an indictment against the American Constitution. The Amphictyonic Council, the Achean league, the Dutch republic, SouthAmerican federations, have all failed and disappeared. How, then, can the Federal Union of the United States, endure? would be harmless enough if it were not made preliminary to something far more objection

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able. Having first insinuated the idea that the American Union is inherently defective in the elements of stability, he endeavours to prove that there are grievances (some real and others imaginary) on the part of the seceding States to justify the disruption, and that any attempt to maintain the Union against their will is not only hopeless, but unconstitutional. And he winds up with an attempt to deprive the Northern States of English sympathy, by raking up diplomatic disputes long since forgotten, and reopening treaties which, however disadvantageous to us, are now irrevocable.1 This effort to stir up the bitter waters of international hatred between England and the free States of the North, on behalf of a confederacy i whose end and object is declared to be the organization of Labour on the basis of slavery, deserves the strongest reprobation.

' Appendix E.

2 "But, not to be tedious in enumerating the numerous changes for the better, allow me to allude to one other, though last not least: the new constitution has put at rest for ever all the agitating questions relating to our peculiar institu

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tions,-African slavery as it exists amongst us, the proper status of the negro in our form of civilization. This was the

immediate cause of the late rupture and present revolution. Jefferson, in his forecast, had anticipated this as the rock

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