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Is he not man, by sin and suffering tried ?
Quickly, by Spain's alluring fortune fired, Is he not man, for whom the Savior died ?
With hopes of fame, and dreams of wealth inspired Belie the Negro's powers ;-in headlong will, Europe's dread powers from ignominious ease Christian, thy brother thou shalt prove him still : Started; their pennons stream'd on every breeze: Belie his virtues; since his wrongs began,
And still, where'er the wide discoveries spread, His follies and his crimes have stampt him Man. The cane was planted, and the native bled ;
While, nursed by fiercer suns, of nobler race, The Spaniard found him such :the island-race The Negro toil'd and perish'd in his place. His foot had spurn'd from earth's insulted face; Among the waifs and foundlings of mankind, First, Lusitania.—she whose prows had borne Abroad he look'd, a sturdier stock to find; Her arms triumphant round the car of morn, A spring of life, whose fountains should supply
-Turnid to the setting sun her bright array, His channels, as he drank the rivers dry :
And hung her trophies o'er the couch of day. That stock he found on Afric's swarming plains, Holland,—whose hardy sons roll'd back the sea That spring he open'd in the Negro's veins ; To build the halcyon-nest of liberty, A spring, exhaustless as his avarice drew,
Shameless abroad the enslaving flag unfurlid, A stock that like Prometheus' vitals grew
And reign'd a despot in the younger world. Beneath the eternal beak his heart had tore, Beneath the insatiate thirst that drain'd his gore. Denmark,—whose roving hordes, in barbarous Thus, childless as the Caribbeans died,
times, Afric's strong sons the ravening waste supplied ; Fill’d the wide North with piracy and crimes, Of hardier fibre to endure the yoke,
Awed every shore, and taught their keels to sweep
By Rollo's spirit, risen from the dead.
Gallia,—who vainly aim'd, in depth of night,
(But lately laid, with unprevented blow, Freighted with curses was the bark that bore
The thrones of kings, the hopes of freedom low), The spoilers of the west to Guinea's shore ;
-Rush'd o'er the theatre of splendid toils,
To brave the dangers and divide the spoils.
Britannia,—she who scathed the crest of Spain. The human cargo and the demon crew.
And won the trident sceptre of the main, -Thenceforth, unnumber'd as the waves that roll When to the raging wind and ravening tide From sun to sun, or pass from pole to pole, She gave the huge Armada's scatter'd pride, Outcasts and exiles, from their country torn, Smit by the thunder-wielding hand that hurl'd In foating dungeons o'er the gulf were borne: Her vengeance round the wave-encircled world;
– The valiant, seized in peril-daring fight; -Britannia shared the glory and the guilt,The weak, surprised in nakedness and night; By her were Slavery's island-altars built, Subjects by mercenary despots sold;
And fed with human victims ;-while the cries Victims of justice prostitute for gold;
of blood demanding vengeance from the skies, Brothers by brothers, friends by friends betray'd; Assail'd her traders' grovelling hearts in vain Snared in her lover's arms the trusting maid; -Hearts dead to sympathy, alive to gain, The faithful wise by her false lord estranged, Hard from impunity, with avarice cold, For one wild cup of drunken bliss exchanged ; Sordid as earth, insensible as gold. From the brute-mother's knee, the infant-boy, Kidnapp'd in slumber, barter'd for a toy ;
Thus through a night of ages, in whose shade The father, resting at his father's tree,
The sons of darkness plied the infernal trade, Doom'd by the son to die beyond the sea :
Wild Africa beheld her tribes, at home, -All bonds of kindred, law, alliance broke, In battle slain ; abroad, condemn'd 10 roam All ranks, all nations crouching to the yoke ; O'er the salt waves, in stranger isles to bear From fields of light, unshadow'd climes, that lie (Forlorn of hope, and sold into despair), Panting beneath the sun's meridian eye;
Through life's slow journey, to its dolorous close, From hidden Ethiopia's utmost land ;
Unseen, unwept, unutterable woes.
The Love of Country, and of Home, the same in ab Constant as day and night from east to west ; Ages and among all Nations.—The Negro's Homo Still widening, deepening, swelling in its course, and Country.-Mungo Park-Progress of the Slave With bundless ruin and resistless force.
Trade.—The Middle Passage.—The Negro in the
West Indies. The Guinea Captain. - The Creole Where broken-hearted Switzerland bewails
Around the beauteous isle of Liberty ;
Unchanging man, in every varying clime, THERE is a land, of every land the pride, Deems his own land of every land the pride, Beloved by Heaven o'er all the world beside; Beloved by Heaven o'er all the world beside; Where brighter suns dispense serener light, His home the spot of earth supremely blest, And milder moons emparadise the night;
A dearer, sweeter spot than all the rest.
And is the Negro outlaw'd from his birth?
Is he alone a stranger on the earth? The wealthiest isles, the most enchanting shores,
Is there no shed, whose peeping roof appears Views not a realm so beautiful and fair,
So lovely that it fills his eyes with tears ? Nor breathes the spirit of a purer air;
No land, whose name, in exile heard, will dart In every clime the magnet of his soul,
Ice through his veins and lightning through his heart? Touch'd by remembrance, trembles to that pole;
Ah! yes : beneath the beams of brighter skies, For in this land of Heaven's peculiar grace,
His home amidst his father's country lies; The heritage of nature's noblest race,
There with the partner of his sonl he shares There is a spot of earth supremely blest,
Love-mingled pleasures, love-divided cares : A dearer, sweeter spot than all the rest,
There, as with nature's warmest filial fire, Where man, creation's tyrant, casts aside
He soothes his blind, and feeds his helpless sire, His sword and sceptre, pageantry and pride,
His children sporting round his hut behold While in his soften'd looks benignly blend
How they shall cherish him when he is old, The sire, the son, the husband, brother, friend :
Train'd by example from their tenderest youth Here woman reigns; the mother, daughter, wife,
To deeds of charity, and words of truth.' Strews with fresh flowers the narrow way of life;
-Is he not blest? Behold, at closing day, In the clear beaven of her delightful eye,
The negro-village swarms abroad to play; An angel-guard of loves and graces lie;
He treads the dance through all its rapturous rounds, Around her knees domestic duties meet,
To the wild music of barbarian sounds; And fire-side pleasures gambol at her feet.
Or, stretch'd at ease, where broad palmettoes shower " Where shall that land, that spot of earth be found ! Delicious coolness in his shadowy bower, Art thou a man -a patriot ?-look around;
He feasts on tales of witchcraft, that give birth O, thou shalt find, howe'er thy footsteps roam,
To breathless wonder, or ecstatic mirih : That land thy country, and that spot thy home!
Yet most delighted, when, in rudest rhymes,
The minstrel wakes the song of elder times, On Greenland's rocks, o'er rude Kamschatka's When men were heroes, slaves to Beauty's charms, plains,
And all the joys of life were love and arms. In pale Siberia's desolate domains;
-Is not the Negro blest ? His generous soil When the wild hunter takes his lonely way,
With harvest-plenty crowns his simple toil ; Tracks through tempestuous snows his savage prey. He loves to greet the stranger at his board :
More than his wants his flocks and fields afford : The reindeer's spoil, the ermine's treasure shares, And feasts his famine on the fat of bears ;
“ The winds were roaring, and the White Man Aled; Or, wrestling with the might of raging seas,
The rains of night descended on his head ; Where round the pole the eternal billows freeze,
The poor White Man sat down beneath our tree, Plucks from their jaws the stricken whale, in vain Weary and faint, and far from home, was he : Plunging down headlong through the whirling main; For him no mother fills with milk the bowl, -His wastes of ice are lovelier in his eye
No wife prepares the bread to cheer his soul; Than all the flowery vales beneath the sky,
1-Pity the poor White Man who sought our tree; And dearer far than Cæsar's palace-dome,
No wife, no mother, and no home, has he.” His cavern-shelter, and his cottage-home.
Thus sang the Negro's daughters ;-once again,
O that the poor White Man might hear that strain ! O'er China's garden-fields and peopled floods ; In California's pathless world of woods ;
1 Dr. Winterbotham saya, " The respect which the Africans Round Andes' heights, where Winter from his throne, pay to old people is very great.- One of the severest insulta
which can be offered to an African is to speak disrespectfully Looks down in scorn upon the summer zone; of his mother," "The Negro race is, perhaps, the most proBy the gay borders of Bermuda's isles,
lific of all the human species. Their infancy and youth are sin Where Spring with everlasting verdure smiles, gularly happy.—The mothers are passionately fond of their On pure Madeira's vine-robed hills of health ;
children."-Goldbury's Travels.-"Strike me,' said my
attendant, but do not curse my mother.' --The same sentiIn Java's swamps of pestilence and wealth ;
ment I found universally to prevail.-One of the first lesson Where Babel stood, where wolves and jackals drink, in which the Mandingo women instruct their children is the 'Midst weeping willows, on Euphrates' brink ; practice of truth. It was the only consolation for a Negro On Carmel's crest; by Jordan's reverend stream,
mother, whose son had been murdered by the Moons, that the Where Canaan's glories vanish'd like a dream;
poor boy had never told a lie."— Park & Travels. The de
scription of African life and manners that follows, and the song Where Greece, a spectre, haunts her heroes' graves, of the Negro's daughters, are copied without exaggeration from And Rome's vast ruins darken Tiber's waves ; the authentic accounts of Mungo Park.
-Whether the victim of the treacherous Moor, Yet small the number, and the fortune blest
of those who in the stormy deep found rest, Spurn'd as a spy from Europe's hateful clime, Weigh'd with the unremember'd millions more, And left to perish for thy country's crime ;
That 'scaped the sea to perish on the shore,
The earth-devouring anguish of despair,'
The home-sick passion which the Negro feels, Thus lived the Negro in his native land,
When toiling, fainting in the land of canes, Till Christian cruisers anchord on his strand:
His spirit wanders to his native plains ; Where'er their grasping arms the spoilers spread,
His little lovely dwelling there he sees, 'The Negro's joys, the Negro's virtues, fled;
Beneath the shade of his paternal trees, Till, far amidst the wilderness unknown,
The home of comfort: then before his eyes They flourish'd in the sight of Heaven alone :
The terrors of captivity arise. While from the coast, with wide and wider sweep. Their
mother slumber'd on their father's breast :
—'T was night:-his babes around him lay at rest,
A yell of murder rang around their bed;
They woke; their cottage blazed; the victims fled: To blazon in the ears of future slaves
Forth sprang the ambush'd ruffians on their prey, The secrets of the world beyond the waves.
They caught, they bound, they drove them far away;
The white man bought them at the mart of blood; When the loud trumpet of eternal doom
In pestilential barks they cross'd the flood; Shall break the mortal bondage of the tomb;
Then were the wretched ones asunder torn,
To distant isles, to separate bondage borne,
Denied, though sought with tears, the sad relief
That misery loves,—the fellowship of grief. With human relics, render up their dead :
The Negro, spoild of all that nature gave Though warm with life the heaving surges glow,
To freeborn man, thus shrunk into a slave : Where'er the winds of heaven were wont to blow, His passive limbs, to measured tasks confined, In sevenfold phalanx shall the rallying hosts
Obey'd the impulse of another mind; Of ocean slumberers join their wandering ghosts,
A silent, secret, terrible control, Along the melancholy gulf, that roars
That ruled his sinews, and repress'd his soul. From Guinea to the Caribbean shores.
Not for himself he waked at morning-light, Myriads of slaves, that perish'd on the way,
Toil'd the long day, and sought repose at night; From age to age the shark's appointed prey,
His rest, his labor, pastime, strength, and health, By livid plagues, by lingering tortures slain,
Were only portions of a master's wealth; Or headlong plunged alive into the main,'
His love-0, name not love, where Britons doom Shall rise in judgment from their gloomy beds,
The fruit of love to slavery from the womb! And call down vengeance on their murderers' heads.
Thus spurn'd, degraded, trampled, and oppressid, 1 On this suluject the following instance of almost incredible With nothing left of life but hated breath,
The Negro-exile languish'd in the West, cruelty was substantiated in a court of justice :
"In this year (1783), certain underwriters desired to be heard And not a hope except the hope, in death,
Lives there a savage ruder than the slave!
third. would fall upon the owners of the ship, but that, if they were thrown into the sea, it would fall upon the underwriters.' He
"Mr. Sharpe was present at this trial, and procured the at selected, nccordingly, one hundred and thirty-two of the most tendance of a short-hand writer to take down the facts which wickly of the slaves. Fifty-lour of these were immediately thrown should come out in the course of it. These he gave to the overboard, and forty-two were made to be partakers of their public afterwards. He communicated them also, with a copy fate on the succeeding day. In the course of three days after- of the trial, to the Lords of the Admiralty, as the guardians of wards the remaining twenty-six were brought upon deck, to justice upon the seas, and to the Duke of Portland, as principal complete the number of victims. The first sixteen submitted to minister of state. No notice, however, was taken by any of be thrown into the sea, but the rest, with a noble resolution, these of the information which had been thus sent them." would not suffer the officers to touch them, but leaped after Clarkson's History of the Abolition, etc., page 95—97. their companions, and shared their fate.
1 The Negroes sometimes, in deep and irrecoverable mclan"The piea which was set up in behalf of this atrocious and choly, waste themselves away, by secretly swallowing largo unparalleled act of wickedness was, that the captain discovered, quantities of earth. It is remarkable that “ earth-eating," as it when he made the proposal, that he had only two hundred gal: is called, is an infectious, and even a social malady : planta Jons of water on board, and that he had missed his port. It was tions have been occasionally almost depopulated, by the slaves proved, however, in answer to this, that no one had been put with one consent, betaking themselves to this strange practice upon short allowance; and that, as if Providence had deter- which speedily brings them to a miserable and premature end wined to afford an unequivocal proof of the guilt, a shower of
(a) It appeared that they filled sir.
False as the winds that round his vessel blow, His children, sprung alike from sloth and vice, Remorseless as the gulf that yawns below, Are born his slaves, and loved at market price. Is he who toils upon the wafting food,
Has he a soul ?-With his departing breath, A Christian broker in the trade of blood :
A form shall hail him at the gates of death, Boisterous in speech, in action prompt and bold, The spectre Conscience,--shrieking through the gloom, He buys, he sells,-he steals, he kills, for gold. · Man, we shall meet again beyond the tomb." At noon, when sky and ocean, calm and clear, Bend round his bark, one blue unbroken sphere; Oh, Africa! amidst thy children's woes, When dancing dolphins sparkle through the brine, Did earth and heaven conspire to aid thy foes ? And sunbeam circles o'er the waters shine; No, thou hadst vengeance From thy northern shores He sees no beauty in the heaven serene,
Sallied the lawless corsairs of the Moors, No soul-enchanting sweetness in the scene, And back on Europe's guilty nations hurl'd But, darkly scowling at the glorious day,
Thy wrongs and sufferings in the sister world : Curses the winds that loiter on their way.
Deep in thy dungeons Christians clank'd their chains, When swoln with hurricanes the billows rise, Or toil'd and perish'd on thy parching plains. To meet the lightning midway from the skies ; When from the unburthen'd'hold his shrieking slaves But where thine offspring crouch'd beneath the yoke, Are cast, at midnight, to the hungry waves : In heavier peals the avenging thunder broke. Not for his victims strangled in the deeps,
-Leagned with rapacious rovers of the main, Not for his crimes, the harden'd pirate weeps, Hayti's barbarian hunters harass'd Spain,' But grimly smiling, when the storm is o'er, A mammoth race, invincible in might, Counts his sure gains, and hurries back for more.' Rapine and massacre their dire delight,
Peril their element; o'er land and flood Lives there a reptile baser than the slave ?? They carried fire, and quench'd the flames with blood; -Loathsome as death, corrupted as the grave, Despairing captives hail'd them from the coasts, See the dull Creole, at his pompous board, They rush'd to conquest, led by Carib ghosts. Attendant vassals cringing round their lord : Satiate with food, his heavy eye-lids close,
Tremble, Britannia! while thine islands tell Valuptuous minions fan him to repose;
The appalling mysteries of Obi's spell ; Prone on the noon-day couch he lolls in vain, The wild Maroons, impregnable and free, Delirious slumbers rock his maudlin brain ;
Among the mountain-holds of liberty, He starts in horror from bewildering dreams, Sudden as lightning darted on their foe, His bloodshot eye with fire and frenzy gleams. Seen like the flash, remember'd like the blow. He stalks abroad; through all his wonted rounds, The Negro trembles, and the lash resounds,
While Gallia boasts of dread Marengo's fight, And cries of anguish, shrilling through the air,
And Hohenlinden's slaughter-deluged night, To distant fields his dread approach declare. Her spirit sinks ;-the sinews of the brave, Mark, as he passes, every head declined ;
That crippled Europe, shrunk before the Slave; Then slowly raised,—to curse him from behind. The Demon-spectres of Domingo rise, This is the veriest wretch on nature's face, And all her triumphs vanish from her eyes. Own'd by no country, spurn'd by every race; The tether'd tyrant of one narrow span,
God is a Spirit, veil'd from human sight,
In secret darkness of eternal light;
The hidings of his counsel and his face ;
Unknown, unknowing, his mysterious will ;
Mercies and judgments mark bim, every hour, The vague brute instinct of an idiot mind; Supreme in grace, and infinite in power: Whose heart, 'midst scenes of suffering senseless Oft o'er the Eden-islands of the West, grown,
In floral pomp, and verdant beauty drest, E'en from his mother's lap was chillid to stone;
Roll the dark clouds of his awaken'd ire : Whose torpid pulse no social feelings move;
-Thunder and earthquake, whirlwind, flood, and fire, A stranger to the tenderness of love;
'Midst reeling mountains and dieparting plains, His motley haram charms his gloating eye,
Tell the pale world," the God of vengeance reigns." Where ebon, brown, and olive beauties vie;
Nor in the majesty of storms alone,"
"The Eternal makes his dread displeasure known; 1 See Note 1, page 16, col. 1. 2 The character of the Creole Planter here drawn is justified both by reason and fact: it is no monster of imagination, though, 1 Alluding to the freeberoters and buccaneers who infested the for the credit of human nature, we may hope that it is a mon- Caribbean sens during the sixteenth and seventeenth centuries, ster as rare as it is shocking. It is the double curse of slavery and were equally renowned for their valor and brutality. to degrade all who are concerned with it, doing or suffering. 2 See Dallas's History of the Maroons, among the mounThe slave himself is the lowest in the scale of human beings.tains of Jamaica; also, Dr. Moseley's Treatise on Sugar. except the slave-dealer. Dr. Pinkard's Noles on the West 3 For minute and a Micting details of the origin and progress Indies, and Captain Stedman's Account of Surinam, afford ex of the yellow lever in an individual subject, see Dr. Pinkard's amples of the cruelty, ignorance, sloth, and sensuality of Creole Notes on the West Indies, vol. iii. particularly Letter XII in pianters, particularly in Dutch Guiana, which fully equal the which the writer, from experience, describes its horrors and epitome of vice and abominalion exhibited in these lines.
At his command the pestilence abhorrid
Ages rollid by, the turf perennial bloom'd
No kings adorn’d, no pilgrims kiss'd their shrine ;
A faithful remnant;-o'er their native clime
His Spirit moved in his appointed time;
Mercy to Sinners in a Savior's name :"
Thus spake the Lord; they heard, and they obey'd,
---Greenland lay wrapt in nature's heaviest shade;
The gaunt barbarians met them on the shore;
With joy and wonder hailing from afar,
Where roll Ohio's streams, Missouri's floods,
Beneath the umbrage of eternal woods,
land, North America, and the West Indies. On him the everlasting Gospel smiled;
And thou, poor Negro! scorn'd of all mankind;
Thou dumb and impotent, and deaf and blind;
Crush'd by the curse on Adam to the grave;
— The captive raised his slow and sullen eye; They found the freedom of the sons of God. He knew no friend, nor deem'd a friend was nigh,
Till the sweet tones of Pity touch'd his cars, When Europe languish'd in barbarian gloom, And Mercy bathed his bosom with her tears; Beneath the ghostly tyranny of Rome,
Strange were those tones, to him those tears were Whose second empire, cowld and mitred, burst
strange; A phænix from the ashes of the first;
He wept and wonder'd at the mighty change,
Felt the quick pang of keen compunction dart,
From isle to isle the welcome tidings ran; While ravening wolves, that scorn'd the shepherd's The slave that heard them started into man: hand,
Like Peter, sleeping in his chains, he lay,-
Arise!” his fetters fall, his slumbers flee;
No more to demon-gods, in hideous forms,
In secret agony devour'd the earth,
And, while he spared his mother, cursed his birth.'
Brethren in Greenland, North America, and the West Indies,
have been published in Germany: those of the two former bave
land, and Loskiel's History of the Brethren among the Indians