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longer inaccessible, and enter the unfolded gates, burning in the sun. I speak in that city, where Black having once taught, and Watt learned, the grand experiment was afterwards made in our day, and with entire success, to demonstrate that the highest intellectual cultivation is perfectly compatible with the daily cares and toils of working men; to show, by thousands of living examples, that a keen relish for the most sublime truths of science, belong alike to every class of mankind.
Real knowledge never promoted either turbulence or unbelief; but its progress is the forerunner of liberality and enlightened toleration. Whoso dreads these, let him tremble; for he may be well assured that their day is at length come, and must put to flight the evil spirit of tyranny and persecution, which haunted the long night now gone down the sky. As men will no longer suffer themselves to be led blindfolded in ignorance, so will they no more yield to the vile principle of judging and treating their fellow creatures, not according to the intrinsic merit of their actions, but according to the accidental and involuntary coincidence of their opinions. The Great Truth has finally gone forth to all the ends of the earth, That
MAN SHALL NO TO MAN FOR HIS BELIEF, OVER WHICH HE HAS HIMSELF NO CONTROUL. Henceforward, nothing shall prevail upon us to praise or to blame any one for that which he can no more change than he can the hue of his skin, or the height of his stature. Henceforward, treating with entire respect those who conscientiously differ from ourselves, the only practical effect of the difference will be, to make us enlighten the ignorance, on one side, or the other from which it springs, by instructing them if it be theirs; ourselves if it be our own, to the end that the only kind of unanimity may be produced, which is desirable
rational beings the agreement proceeding from full conviction, after the freest discussion. Far, then, very far, from the universal spread of knowledge being the object of just apprehension to those who watch over the peace of the country, or have a deep interest in the permanence of her institutions, its sure effect will be the removal of the only dangers that threaten the public tranquillity, and the addition of all that is wanting to confirm her internal strength.
Let me indulge in the hope, that among the illustrious youths, whom this ancient kingdom,
famed alike for its nobility and its learning, has produced to continue her fame through after ages, possibly among those I now address, there may be found some one-I ask no more-willing to give a bright example to other nations, in a path yet untrodden, by taking the lead of his fellow citizens-not in frivolous amusements, nor in the degrading pursuits of the ambitious vulgar—but in the truly noble task of enlightening the mass of his countrymen, and of leaving his own name no longer encircled, as heretofore, with barbaric splendour, or attached to courtly gewgaws, but illustrated by the honours most worthy of our rational nature-coupled with the diffusion of knowledge and gratefully pronounced through all ages by millions, whom his wise beneficence has rescued from ignorance and vice. To him I will say, “ Ho“ mines ad Deos nullâ re propius accedunt quam “ salutem hominibus dando: nihil habet nec “ fortuna tua majus quam ut possis, nec natura “ tua melius quam ut velis servare quamplu“ rimos.” This is the true mark for the aim of all, who either prize the enjoyment of pure happiness, or set a right value upon a pure
and unsullied renown. And if the benefactors of mankind, when they rest from their pious labours, shall be permitted to enjoy hereafter as an appropriate reward of their virtue, the privi
lege of looking down upon the blessings with which their toils and sufferings have clothed the scene of their former existence; do not vainly imagine that, in a state of exalted purity and wisdom, the founders of mighty dynasties, the conquerors of new empires, or the more vulgar crowd of evil-doers, who have sacrificed to their own aggrandisement the good of their fellow creatures, will be gratified by contemplating the monuments of their inglorious famemtheirs will be the delight-theirs the triumph-who can trace the remote effects of their enlightened benevolence in the improved condition of their species, and exult in the reflection, that the prodigious change they now survey,
eyes that age and sorrow can make dim no more-of knowledge become power-virtue sharing in the dominion-superstition trampled under foot -tyranny driven from the world—are the fruits, precious though costly, and though late reaped, yet long enduring, of all the hardships and al} the hazards they encountered here below!
“ A DISCOURSE OF THE
PLEASURES OF SCIENCE."
Іт may easily be demonstrated, that there is an advantage in learning, both for the usefulness and the pleasure of it. There is something positively agreeable to all men, to all at least whose nature is not most grovelling and base, in gaining knowledge for its own sake. When you see any thing for the first time, you at once derive some gratification from the sight being new; your attention is awakened, and you desire to know more about it. If it is a piece of workmanship, as an instrument, a machine of any kind, you wish to know how it is made; how it works; and what use it is of. If it is an animal, you desire to know where it comes from; how it lives; what are its dispositions, and, generally, its nature and habits. This desire is felt, too, without at all considering that