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in conducting a religious periodical, I determined to say something by way of exposing that (as I believed) unreasonable and unscriptural dogma; which I did. Hence, the appearance of the several pieces on the “God of Universalism,” in the “Christian Journal and Union." But, merely for the sake of variety among the pieces on the subject, I was seated one day in order to compose some five or six stanzas; but, when I had finished the number proposed, I found that I was fully out at sea, and that I could not well publish anything without publishing that to which my labors must swell— A BOOK. Havo ing finished one canto, the way was opened for another, and so on, till I had finished twelve. The theme was fruitful in its way. As for the merits of the whole

per formance, if there be any, the public at last will speak, but not from the impulses of those whose pride is wounded, or from the dispraise of interested editors and selfappointed critics, who never can see merit anywhere except in themselves, or in those who volunteer to become their echoes. To purchase praise from the secular press, would be an adventure which, however frequently done, would require more brass than I have on cheek or in coffer: and to expect it from those who have APPOINTED THEMSELVES as censors of the literature of religion, in that department where it has been my lot to labor, is & matter which recent indications admonish me is vain. There is, then, but the one way to act in reference to the fate of the little volume now in your hand, reader-to let it go upon what merit it may have in the estimation of the public. I think I can bear the sneers of the ig. norant, the contempt of the envious, and the coolness of pretended friends. I do not know that I desire their praise, and certainly I do not very much dread their frowns. I have, indeed, some reason to anticipate the latter; for when, in 1847, seven cantos of the Univer saliad were published, they met with an ungracious re

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saliad were published, they met with an ungraciow Respecting the spirit and style of the poem, could I

and so on, till I had finished twelve. The theme we didly acknowledged and confessed. He argues, or rathbat got from the impulses of those whose pride is wount the end of the eighth canto. In the ninth canto, we reformance, if there be any, the public at last will speale objections as appear in his way. Thus he goes on, till

to supply such omissions as had been discovered in the teir echoes. To purchase praise from the secular pres account of the several discussions in which, at various would be an adventure which, however frequently dor times, he had been engaged. He meets a Methodist cir

cuit-rider, Luther Lee. He next meets a Presbyterian

divine. Finally, he meets some nameless orator, whom that department where it has been my lot to labor, is 18 so terrified, that he flies in much haste to a place of

concealment. The eleventh canto is a letter which he fate of the little volume now in your hand, reader tied him a short time before, at the water. There is, then, but the one way to act in reference to writes by way of reprisal, to the man who had so terrilet it go upon what merit it may have in the estimate some serious, and some rather comical, things in this norant, the contempt of the envious, and the coolness water-man to said letter, and is also designed to show of the public. I think I can hear the sneers of the canto. The twelfth canto contains the answer of the pretended friends. I do not know that I desire to clearly and fully the practical tendency of the doctrine frowns. I have, indeed, some reason to anticipate ples. Such is the plan, and such the substance of the praise, and certainly I do not very much dread of Universalism, by the presentation of a list of exam.

2 conducting a religious periodical, I determined to say peption in certain quarters, where, if read, they might omething by way of exposing that (as I believed) an

have been of service. It will not be strange, if the easonable and unscriptural dogma; which I did. Hence

whole volume should now come in for a double share of he appearance of the several pieces on the “God of Uni

similar opprobrium. Should this be the case, happily crsalism," in the Christian Journal and Union." Bui

the book is armed with a sting, which will be felt in pronerely for the sake of variety among the pieces on the portion as it is provoked by tắe crities in question. ubject, I was seated one day in order to compose som The plan of this poem is plain and easily apprehended. ive or six stanzas; but, when I had finished the num

A Universalist clergyman, in the

main apparently

honder proposed, I found that I was fully out at sea, an hat I could not well publish anything without publik audience around him, and as discoursing to the believers ing that to which my labors must sweilA BOOK. Her ing finished one canto, the way was opened for another composed. Every difficulty he finds in his way is canfruitful in its way. As for the merits of the whole per

ohiasserts

, the case at large, and then puts forth such appointed critics, who never can see merit anywhere er Fould require more brass than I have on cheeks or coffer: and to expect it from those who have APPOINT matter which recent indications admonish me is va

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latter; for when, in 1847, seven cantos of the Uhr

and

be indulged, I would make a remark or two. And here I disguise it not, that I have aimed at a burlesque throughout. I am sensible that Universalists have called it a low and vulgar poem. Others, who ought to know better, have seemed, in a few instances, to coincide in so worthless a judgment. I challenge all men to produce a vulgar or coarse line from it. But, it

may

be well to observe, that words sometimes seem to contract a stain from the subjects about which we employ them. This is the case with Universalism. It is a blind, headlong, and stupid affair; and while our hero is telling his tale, he must be allowed to do it in his own way, according to the genius of his own system. This will

, and must, give an air of levity to sundry of his speeches. Were it otherwise, the poem could not be, as it now is, a transcript, faithful and true, of the features of Universalism. Poetry, in part, is defined as a picture to the life, or that medium through which we see things as they

And I venture the assertion, that, whenever we see Universalism as it is, we see that which is supremely ridiculous-a strange commingling of things grave and ludicrous, solemn and laughable, sacred and profane. I am sensible that it is a nice point to handle so depraved a subject, without being liable to the charge of levity, or even of vulgarity. In operations of this kind, it is necessary not only to use the most delicate forceps, or whatever instrument the contact requires, but to use it in the most skillful manner, lest some of the virus or corruption elicited from the subject defile the person of the operator.

It will be a mistake, in most readers, if they suppose they can understand this poem at once. I find that some of my cherished friends have partially misunderstood it. The unpracticed reader will find much dificulty in reading it, and, perhaps, more still in knowing why certain words were employed in preferenoe to oth

are.

the reader will not judge hastily, or before a thorough ccording to the genius of his own system. This will and careful perusal. It is known to the public that I nd must, give an air of levity to sundry of his speeches have written much on the subject of Universalism-that

tism (for necessity puts it upon me to speak of myself pe Universalism as it is, we see that which is supreme is this preface), I must give it as my candid judgment,

that this poem is the best that I have produced on the udicrous, solemn and laughable, sacred and profane. subject. I have aimed it as a home-thrust into the viI sensible that it is a nice point to handle so deprares tals of the error; and if I have missed the mark, I am

more deceived than I supposed I could be. -ren of vulgarity. In operations of this kind, it is net mark is made for the purpose of calling public attention =ary not only to use the most delicate forceps, or whater to this production. While I think the poem may do

use it in great good, I desire it to have a fair trial, by being read Elost skillful manner, lest some of the virus or corta" by the intelligent

In the presence of some readers, perhaps, an apology hey can understand this poem at once. I find the might have been selected, and one by which the author's -tood it. The unpracticed reader will find much dif that case, two important objects would have been lostome of my cherished friends have partially misunde meaning could have been more readily gathered: but, in hy certain words were employed in preference to all the circumstances, and the facility afforded by this

indulged, I would make a remark or two. And here

ers

, or why certain rhymes were adopted which border guise it not, that I have aimed at a burlesque on the ridiculous: In reference to all which, I would maghout. I am sensible that Universalists have callI it a low and vulgar poem. Others

, who ought to I have used such expressions and rhymes. In my judg

say, I have purposed to do all as you find it-of choice now better , have seemed, in a few instances, to coincide ment

, the burlesque could have been done

in no other 1 do worthless a judgment. I challenge all men to pro style so well. The words, the feet, the rhyme, the subnee a vulgar or coarse line from it. But, it may be ject

, are all homogeneous, or should be so;

and, hence, rll to observe, that words sometimes seem to contract the reader, if he can enter into the spirit of this poem, stain from the subjects about which we employ them will find, if I mistake not

, a constant pleasure throughhis is the case with Universalism. It is a blind

, head out

, at the expense of a doctrine which he will intuitiveng, and stapid affair; and

while our hero is telling ; see is false and impious. May I hope, then, that is tale, he must be allowed to do it in his own way, and

transcript, faithful and true, of the features of Unites that side in this country—and that I am held in abominafe, or that medium through which we see things as the ment: but, if the reader will pardon an apparentego re. And I venture the assertion, that, whenever mi idiculous— a strange commingling of things grave as subject , without being liable to the charge of levitz, «

This reustrument the contact requires, but ion elicited from the subject defile the person of I perator. It will be a mistake, in most readers, if they supponi present case

. I confess tỉat a measure more easily read

may be due for the singular

measure adopted in the

muses.

length of line, and its termination, of saying what was intended in such a way as would cut with the most effective edge. Experience has taught me, that alternate lines, of twelve and eleven syllables, are most happily adapted to the special purposes of the Universaliad, and, perhaps, also to satire in general. The first line ending with a short syllable, and the next with a long one, &c., gives wide scope for rhymes, if these be an object, so that any description may be had, or any sentiment expressed, at the pleasure of him who is favored by the

If, then, the reader will look into this subject carefully, he will find, it is hoped, no cause of regret on account of the singular measure adopted in the poem

be fore him.

Byron once said of himself, "I love rhymes.” They are by no means essential to poetry—they are often obstructions, and burthens to it: nevertheless, if they can be used without seeming to be sought, or without expressing less or more than the sentiment intended, they become ornaments, and should be used.

I confess my self fond of them. They are used, on all occasions, throughout the following poem. In some instances they may appear somewhat forced or unnatural as when a word is divided at the end of a line--but in all those places I sought to have it so, rather than otherwise, for the sake of the subject then in thought. I am aware that some critics have condemned this practice; but I maintain that it is justifiable at certain times.

Far the greatest number of the critics have neither better taste nor judgment than the authors they affect to review. It is sometimes the case, that one man elevates himself into a judge or censor of the productions of all other men; and, unhappily, it is not unfrequently the case, that a whole community gives up to him both conscience and judgment; while, at the same time, he may be neither poet nor philosopher--may not be as deserving as

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