« ForrigeFortsett »
Φιλοσοφίαν δε ου την Στωικήν λέγω, ουδε την Πλατωνικήν, ή την 'Επι-
CLEM. ALEX, Strom. L. 1.
FOSTER, BISBEE, AND CO., NEW YORK.
FOR JULY, 1840.
Art. I. Democracy in America, by ALEXIS DE TOCQUEVILLE, Avo
cat à la cour Royale de Paris. Translated by HENRY Reeve, Esq. Third edition. Vols. I. and II. Part the Second, vols. III. and IV. London : Saunders and Otley. 1838–1840.
A CELEBRATED minister of state in Sweden once ex
claimed to his son, See with how little talent the world is governed ! Now however mortifying it may seem to admit the truth of such an assertion, it should also be at the same time remembered, that from the earliest ages of society downward, mankind through the consequences of the fall have been subjected to a mighty fraud, which has usurped the name and attributes of government. Patriarchism, despotism, monarchy, aristocracy, or democracy so called, have all and each with slight occasional exceptions, just deluded generation after generation. The art of ruling has been a craft rather than a science ;—for the most part an enormous imposture, rather than a substantial or genuine reality. Potentates have too often been monsters or fools in ermine and scarlet: their sceptre has been the wand of a juggler: their premiers or viziers have proved selfish satellites, glorying more or less in the sable livery of Satan : constitutional assemblies have been cunningly contrived machineries for fleecing and peeling an enlightened, gaping, public: so that through nearly the whole of this notable process, very little else has ever been necessary than felicity of fortune, dexterity of hand, some personal courage, and much matchless impudence. Yet it has all won and worn the venerable and dignified appellation of government in the page of history. We admit the exceptions, as