It is curious that the necessity of magnanimity should be so little understood by Christians, seeing that it is an essential characteristic of the true spirit of our Divine Lord. While we are all more or less conscious of the obligation we lie under to practise humility, there are few among us who recognize, or at all events realize, the culpability of allowing the heart to be contracted by pusillanimity, a vice which is, nevertheless, as widely spread as pride itself, and is perhaps scarcely less prejudicial to the soul. So closely, indeed, is pusillanimity allied to pride, that there could hardly be a greater mistake than the common one of confounding pusillanimity with Christian humility, which is in fact its direct contradictory; for in the heart of the Christian, as in the Heart of our Lord Himself, magnanimity is the inseparable companion of true humility.

To be convinced of this truth, it is only necessary to place before our minds a true idea of the humility of the Heart of Jesus. It is a limitless humility. Never has any creature so sensibly felt, so clearly understood, and been so deeply convinced of its nothingness, as was the Sacred Humanity of our Lord. Enlightened in the first moment of its existence with the full splendour of Divine light, His human intellect compassed at once the abyss of nothingness from which it had been drawn by a purely gratuitous choice of Divine love, and the immensity of the glory to which it had been raised by an equally gratuitous choice. Hence there are in the Heart of Jesus two distinct yet inseparable feelings, springing from the luminous convictions of His intellect: the recognition of what He was in Himself as man, and the recognition of what He has become by the good pleasure of His Heavenly Father. Experiencing ineffable joy in comparing the two infinitely distant extremes united in His Divine Person, the Heart of our Lord contemplates with loving complacency the nothingness from which it was drawn to be raised to the dignity of the Hypostatic Union; and, as He understands this nothingness incomparably more perfectly than could be done by any mere creature, His humility is incomparably more profound than that of the humblest saints. And thus, as the Great Master of humility, He may well come to us with the words: Discite a me, quia mitis sum et humilis corde.(Learn of me for I am meek and humble of heart.)

II. But, let it be well understood, the sincerity of our Lord's humility in no sense detracts from the strength of His recognition of His own Divine dignity. On the contrary, knowing exactly, as He does, the infinite depth of the abyss from which His Human Nature was drawn, He understands all the more clearly the infinite height to which it is raised by union with the Word of God. He gives their exact value to His Divine prerogatives; He knows that, in uniting it to the Person of His Word, God the Father has extended to the Sacred Humanity that infinite complacency with which from all eternity He is Himself united to His only Son: that He "hath made Him heir of all things,"* and "commanded all His angels to adore Him."+ With all creation at His feet, vested in the absolute power given Him by the Eternal Father, our Divine Master sees moreover each act in the great drama of the world's history tend infallibly to His unfailing triumph and never-ending glory. Could He then have been on earth under the dominion of fears and desires that exercise so baneful an influence over other human hearts? Could temporal evils and temporal pleasures have had any weight with Him, Who is "yesterday, to-day, and the same for ever”?

* Heb. i. 2. t Heb. i. 6.

II. This perfect alliance of the most profound humility with Divine magnanimity, so obviously discernible in the Sacred Heart of our Lord, should be reproduced in its measure in the heart of every Christian. There is no need whatever to prove that we have all abundant motives for humbling and utterly abasing ourselves before God. Not only have we been drawn from nothingness by the purely gratuitous choice of Divine love, as was the Sacred Humanity of our Saviour; we have moreover, by our own free choice, plunged overselves into an abyss deeper beyond measure than that from which our Creator called forth our being; and this second abyss—the abyss of sin—furnishes us with matter for confusion far more intense than that elicited by the contemplation of the nothingness essential to our nature. But as our finite intellect can never perfectly understand the foulness and injustice of sin, as it can never gauge the proportion that exists between a direct sinful act and our own personal degradation in its commission, it is clear that we can never adequately despise ourselves, and hence that our humility can never be sufficiently deep.

All this is quite true; and yet it would not be true Christian humility if it in any way lessened our appreciation of the gifts God has so lavishly bestowed upon us. On the contrary, the better we understand the depth of our degradation by sin, the more highly shall we value the supernatural dignity to which we have been raised by grace, the '; great and precious promises " by which we are made "partakers of the Divine Nature" and "sons of God." Sharing then, though in a widely different proportion, the Divine Nature of our Lord Himself, how is it possible that we should be so slow to catch the magnanimity of His Spirit—like Him to despise temporal fears, to rise above earthly desires, and, in the unchanging calm of our fellowship with Him, to see in all transitory things creatures to help us to our own sanctification, and so to His greater glory and eternal triumph?

III. Such a thought as this carried into the practical working of our every-day lives, would infallibly help us to rise, and to rise rapidly, above the pusillanimity which is the too fruitful though unacknowledged cause of so many evils. It would help us to fight effectually against the mental and moral enervation that shows itself in every conceivable phase of rationalism and sensuality. It would prove at last that magnanimity is the source of our strength, the condition of our influence, and the necessary instrument of our Apostolate. This, then, is why the Church says to us in each day's Mass: Sursum corda. Children of God, remember your high dignity; Sursum corda (Lift up your hearts) to Him Who is your Last End, the "Lord high above all;" Sursum corda, that you may lead many, many more hearts to Him Who, "being lifted up, drew all things to Himself.”


Sacred Heart of Jesus! through the Immaculate Heart of Mary, I offer Thee the prayers, labours, and crosses of this day, in expiation of our offences, and for all Thy other intentions.

I offer them in particular that all Thy servants may understand the Divine dignity with which Thou hast invested them. O Jesus, Who hast made us Thy brethren and members of Thy Body, implant in our hearts sentiments conformable to this sublime vocation.

For the triumph of the Church and Holy See, and the Catholic regeneration of nations.

September Aposolate of Prayer

A Sermon on the Apostleship of Prayer

THE Rev. Father Ramiere, S.J., preached a sermon at Farm Street on Sunday, the 17th of October, inviting attention to that great apostolic work with which the readers of the MESSENGER are so familiarly acquainted. He took his very apposite text from the last chapter of the Second Book of Machabees.

So Nicanor being puffed up with exceeding great pride, thought to set up a public monument of his victory over Judas. But Machabeus ever trusted with all hope that God would help them. And he exhorted his people not to fear the coming of the nations, but to remember the help they had before received from Heaven, and now to hope for victory from the Almighty. And speaking to them out of the law, and the prophets, and withal putting them in mind of the battles they had fought before, he made them more cheerful. Then after he had encouraged them, he showed withal the falsehood of the Gentiles and their breach of oaths. So he armed every one of them, not with defence of shield and spear, but with very good speeches and exhortations, and told them a dream worthy to be believed, whereby he rejoiced them all. Now the vision was in this manner: Onias who had been high priest, a good and virtuous man, modest in his looks, gentle in his manner, and graceful in his speech, and who from a child was exercised in virtues, holding up his hands, prayed for all the people of the Jews. After this there appeared also another man, admirable for age and glory, and environed with great beauty and majesty. Then Onias answering said: This is a lover of his brethren and of the people of Israel: this is he that prayeth much for the people, and for all the holy city, Jeremias the Prophet of God. Whereupon Jeremias stretched forth his right hand, and gave to Judas a sword of gold, saying: Take this holy sword a gift from God, wherewith thou shalt overthrow the adversaries of my people Israel. Thus being exhorted with the words of Judas, which were very good and proper to stir up the courage and strengthen the hearts of the young men, they resolved to fight, and to set upon them manfully, that valour might decide the matter, because the holy city and the temple were in danger.

There we find, my dear brethren, an instance of the general truth which St. Paul expressed when he said: Omnia in figura contingebant illis. (All these things happened to them.) The history of the ancient people is a symbol of the destinies of the true people of God, of the new Israel. Who does not see in the present situation of the Church of God the realization of that which we have been reading just now—of the abandonment to which the Synagogue was reduced in the time of the Machabees? All the earthly glories with which the Church of God was once surrounded have faded away: the holy city is in the hands of her fiercest enemies, her streets are profaned with all kinds of abominations, her treasures are dispersed, her most devoted ministers expelled, her children torn violently from her bosom and delivered up to the worst of all captivities, to the impious education which enslaves the minds and souls of men under the shameful yoke of error and of vice.

And who in this extremity comes to the help of the Church of God? We look to the north and to the south, to the east and to the west, and nowhere appears any human hope of salvation. All the earthly powers that once supported the Church have now turned against her, all, all! Those which are not openly hostile, at least deny her Divine rights. An immense league, embracing all the civilized nations of the world, was formed more than a century ago, to distress the Kingdom of God upon earth, and after having expelled Jesus Christ from public institutions by the so-called Liberal system, they are preparing to expel Him from families and even from the conscience of individual men by godless education.

What remains to the Church? A handful of pious Christians who in all nations form a small minority, and who compared with the numbers of their enemies, and the multitude much greater still of the indifferent and the cowardly, are less capable of fighting successfully than the Machabees were to resist the armies of Demetrius. Shall we then despair of the victory? No, my dear brethren, we shall not despair. And why not? Because Almighty God shows to us as a living and certain reality a spectacle much more consoling than that which was shown to Judas Machabeus in a dream. Do you not see those thousands of pious souls who like Onias hold up their hands and pray for the people of Israel? And above them, do you not see that other intercessor infinitely more powerful than Jeremias, the Very Son of the Almighty, Who, continually present in the midst of us at the same time that He is sitting at the right hand of His Father, is occupied in making intercession for us: Semper vivens ad interpellandum pro nobis? (He always lives to intercede for us )This is He that prayeth much for the people and for all the holy city, and by His prayer, to which He invites us to join our prayers, He renders us invincible and assures our triumph.

I have, therefore, a right to present to you the Apostleship of Prayer, exercised first by our Saviour and practised by Christians in union with the Heart of Jesus, as the last but all-powerful resource of the Church in the extreme danger with which she is threatened.

The Apostleship of Prayer thus understood is not a special association. We must distinguish two aspects of one and the same idea. The Apostleship of Prayer as a power and a duty is as old as Christianity itself, a power conferred and a duty imposed on all Christians to contribute by their prayers and good works to the edification of the Body of Christ. Under this point of view it is as old as the Church. What is new in it is a peculiarity of organization belonging to these later times by which the faithful are induced to unite together in order to exercise that power and to fulfil that duty. In order to organize this Holy League in England, and enable it to produce there the great fruits which it has produced in the other parts of the world, we need the assistance of your pious pastors.

It is not precisely under that respect that I wish to present the Apostleship of Prayer to your consideration to-day. I propose to set before you the idea of the work, to prove the immensity of the power which it puts into your hands and the stringent nature of the duty which it imposes upon you. To attain this end we must examine the Apostleship, first as it is in the Heart of Jesus, and secondly as it is in the heart of Christians.

I. Considered as it is in the Heart of Jesus, the Apostleship of Prayer appears to us as the proper apostolate of the Sacred Heart, the first apostolate which our Saviour exercised, the one which He exercised without interruption, the one which He kept for Himself when He was obliged to divest Himself of all other apostolates. Before briefly developing these three considerations, it is well to determine what is meant by the words Apostleship of Prayer. Preaching and administering the sacraments are not the only apostolate. If they were, you would not be able to give to our Blessed Lady in her own right the title of Queen of Apostles. Mary never preached : she remained silent in the assemblies of the primitive Church, although she could have spoken with more eloquence and efficacy than St. Paul or any other preacher of the Word. And nevertheless she was an apostle, nay, the Queen of Apostles, because by her prayers, her actions, her sufferings, united with those of her Divine Son, she contributed more efficaciously than all the Apostles together to the work of the apostleship, the conversion of souls, the propagation of the Kingdom of Christ. The apostleship includes every work which tends efficaciously to promote the salvation of souls, to convert the sinner, to sanctify the just, to assist the triumph of the Church. Preaching and the administration of sacraments contribute to these results, but the only indispensable means is the grace of God. Every work, therefore, which helps to impart grace to souls is included in the idea of an apostolate.

This explains the mystery of the Life of our Saviour Himself. He had come down from Heaven for one purpose—the salvation of mankind, to enlighten minds immersed in darkness, and bring back into the path of justice souls which had been led astray into the tortuous ways of sin. Having thirty-three years to spend among men, how is it that He waited till the age of thirty to show Himself and to speak? Were those long years of His Hidden Life lost? No, they were as usefully spent as the years of His Public Life. From the very beginning of His Life He had begun to suffer and to pray. He had not yet exercised the apostolate of His preaching, but He had already exercised the apostolate of His Heart, the apostolate of prayer. The first palpitation of His Heart, the first aspiration of His Soul, was the first act of that apostolate, and by that first act He had already done enough for our salvation. Why so? Because He had already obtained the grace necessary and sufficient to save the souls of all men.

I am, therefore, right in saying that the Apostolate of Prayer is the proper apostolate of the Heart of Jesus. For all other apostolates the Heart of Jesus needs cooperation. The apostolate of the word will require the movement of His sacred lips, the apostolate of charity will employ His sacred feet to run after the lost sheep, His sacred hands to bind their wounds; but before the Sacred Heart can have this cooperation of lips and feet and hands, It has already undertaken Its own proper apostolate of prayer. That apostolate was the first which our Saviour exercised. It is true that long before He began to teach men by word of mouth He had taught them by His example: coepit Jesus facere et docere.(Jesus began to do and to teach) At Bethlehem He had preached, by the mute eloquence of His poverty, the same lesson which was to be the first subject of His public exhortation; but even that apostolate of example which began with His visible Life had been forestalled by the invisible apostolate of prayer.

And that apostolate begun at the first moment will thenceforward be continued without interruption. The apostolate of the Word, even when it is undertaken after thirty years, is not exercised without intermission. However indefatigable Jesus may be in announcing the doctrine of salvation, He will only be able to speak according as men shall be disposed to listen to Him. However assiduous He may be in hunting after souls, the night will necessarily interrupt that work of mercy. But the night itself will not interrupt His prayer. When He can no longer proclaim to men the merciful designs of His Heavenly Father, He will continue to treat with that Heavenly Father about the eternal interests of men: Erat pernoctans in oratione Dei.(he spent the night in prayer )

There is only one other apostolate which shares with the Apostolate of Prayer the privilege of being uninterrupted. It is the apostolate of suffering. As the Heart of Jesus never ceased to pray for our salvation during His whole earthly Life, so He never ceased to suffer physically or morally for the expiation of our sins: Tota vita Christi crux fuit et martyrium.(The whole life of Christ was a cross and a martyrdom) But a moment will come when it will be necessary to interrupt that apostolate of suffering as well as the others. The work of Christ is consummated, His earthly Life comes to an end, His Father recalls Him to Heaven, in order to reward Him by unmixed joy for all His bitter trials. He must therefore divest Himself of His apostolic functions, and bequeath them to His ministers. He will henceforward preach by their lips, administer the sacraments, and perform works of mercy by their hands; He will fulfill in the sufferings of His devoted servants what is wanting to His own. But there is an apostolate which He will keep to Himself —the Apostolate of Prayer: semper vivens ad interpellandum pro nobis.(He always lives to intercede for us) In order to exert it more suitably He will create to Himself a second existence upon earth parallel to His existence in Heaven, as humble and obscure as His heavenly Life is glorious—a life of sacrifice and prayer. We see the Lamb Whom in Heaven the angels and the saints adore, "standing as it were slain," in a state of perpetual immolation, and perpetually praying for us.

And how long will that intercession last? As long as the duration of the world. As long as the Bride of Christ is exposed to the attack of her enemies and apparently suffering defeat at their hands, so long will her Divine Spouse help her by His prayers to bear those assaults and to change, as He Himself did before, apparent defeat into glorious victory. As long as one soul on the road to Heaven is exposed to the danger of falling into Hell, so long He Who gave His life for all men without exception will strive by His prayers to apply to that soul the merits of His death. The Apostolate of Prayer is therefore the last apostolate of our Redeemer as it was the first: it is the last mystery of His Life on earth, the one which crowns and makes perfect all the rest, the one by which are applied to our souls the fruits which come from all His actions and sufferings.

Is it not becoming then that there should be an association specially dedicated to the manifestation, the meditation, the glorification of that mystery? Is it not just that sanctuaries should be erected to honour that last and permanent proof of the love of our Saviour, as there are so many dedicated to the transient mysteries of His earthly Life? There is as yet only one sanctuary erected for that purpose, close to the Seminary of Vals, where the Association of the Apostleship of Prayer had its birth. There forty lamps, burning night and day, symbolize the union of our prayer with that perpetual intercession of the Heart of Jesus. But now that sanctuary is closed by those who have undertaken to destroy Christianity in France. They have put their seals upon it as the murderers of Christ once put their seals upon His sepulchre. Let us hope the heirs of the Pharisees will not succeed better than their less guilty forefathers. In the meantime we will only honour the more diligently that mystery of the love of our Saviour the more it is outraged by His enemies.

We do not meditate sufficiently upon His life of prayer. What comfort we should find in our sorrows, what light in our anxieties, what strength in our struggles, what confidence after our falls, if we did but realize that truth? There is now One Who prays for me, Who interests Himself in my difficulties, Who ardently desires my happiness, Who is ready to give me His help; and He is not only the holiest man that ever lived upon earth, He is not only more powerful in His intercession than Moses and Elias, but He is the Almighty Himself, the Son of God, Who has atoned already long ago for the sins which discourage me, and Who has no other desire than to apply to me the immense merits of His atonement.

And again, what confidence should we feel in the destinies of the Church, how easy would it despise her enemies and to laugh at the dangers which surround her, if we kept ever present to our minds the thought of the protection which is given to her by the uninterrupted intercession of the Son of God? Should we not say with St. John: Fortior est qui in nobis est quam qui in mundo est (This stronger man is who is in us , than he that is in the world). Our enemies are strong. They have at their disposal the powers of hell and of earth. But there is in the midst of us One, of Whom it has been said that every knee shall bend at the very sound of His Name, on earth and in hell as well as in Heaven. He is here offering for us those prayers which cannot but be heard by His Father: Ego autem sciebam quia semper me audis (And I knew that thou hearest me always). He is here fulfilling the only condition put by His Father for gaining the triumph over all the world: Postula a me et dabo tibi gentes hereditatem tuam;(Ask of me, and I will give thee the nations for thy inheritance) and the utmost parts of the earth for thy possession.

Not only will the meditation of this great mystery produce in us fruits of consolation and confidence, but it must moreover lead us to unite our prayers to the perpetual intercession of the Sacred Heart of Jesus for the salvation of souls in the exercise of that power imparted to us, of which I shall now briefly demonstrate the reality.

II. Few words are needed to place in the clearest light the second aspect of the Apostleship of Prayer, and when I have convinced your understanding I may leave it to your piety to feed your hearts with the practical consequences which follow from the principles explained. I am not afraid of being accused of exaggeration when I say that by exercising the Apostleship of Prayer in union with the Sacred Heart of Jesus we acquire an unlimited power in cooperating with Him to the success of His great work of saving and sanctifying souls and leading His Church to a triumphant victory:—yes an unlimited power, and unlimited in every way.

That power is unlimited, first as regards the graces which we may obtain for souls. Whatever limit there may be to the results obtained is put by us and not by the promise or the action of Christ, for He says: Whatsoever you shall ask the Father in My Name, that will I do. The same expression is repeated with the same universality in several passages, and as we cannot accuse our Lord of exaggeration or inaccuracy, we must believe that He has really set no bounds to the efficacy of prayer. The promise, therefore, does not apply to those prayers alone which are inspired by the legitimate desire of our own advantage. That is a kind of spiritual selfishness which, although it is not wrong, is less conformable to the example set before us. The promise of Christ applies still more, I will venture to say, to the prayers which are prompted by fraternal charity, for the prayer which most resembles the prayer of the Sacred Heart of Jesus is necessarily most acceptable to His Father. The prayers offered for our neighbour's good are more than any others made in the Name of Jesus. An evident proof that the promise of infallible efficacy applies by preference to them, is that our Lord, wishing to give us the pattern to which we must conform all our prayers that they may deserve to be heard, teaches us a form of words, according to which we are to put the interests of God and of all mankind before our own: Thus shall you pray: Our Father Who art in Heaven, hallowed be Thy Name, Thy kingdom come, Thy will be done. We must first think of His Divine interests, and after that we are allowed to think also of our own interests, but even then no one can be permitted to think of himself alone. What we ask for ourselves we must ask for others also. It is true that we can never be absolutely certain to obtain the conversion of the sinners for whom we pray, because the cooperation of each soul is free; but what is certain is that we shall obtain a grace proportioned to the fervour and confidence of our prayer, and as it depends upon us to enlarge more and more that measure, it depends upon us also to increase indefinitely the chances of salvation of those for whom we pray.

That power is unlimited also as regards the persons to whom it is imparted. The other apostolates require a special vocation and faculties of some particular kind. Not all men have a vocation to the priesthood, and among those who have received the vocation not all are fitted in mental acquirements and physical strength for the active ministry. But the Apostolate of Prayer can be exercised by every Christian. We all in fact have exercised it from the day in which our mother taught us to bend our knees, and join our hands, and say our prayers under the unconscious impulse of the Holy Spirit. And who is he who can exercise that apostolate with most success? Is it the most learned, the most exalted in society, the most influential, the most esteemed? No, it is the most humble, the most pious, the most united with our Lord, the most generous in fulfilling His commandments, and accepting with love all the dispositions of His Providence. A poor beggar like Benedict Joseph Labre, who says his beads at. the door of the church, while an eloquent preacher enraptures from the pulpit a distinguished audience, may contribute more efficaciously than the preacher himself to the serious results of the preaching.

That power is unlimited as to the persons in whose behalf it may be exercised. To convert a sinner by preaching, you must be heard by him; to sanctify souls by your good example, you must be seen; to extend by the press the influence of your spoken word, you must be read; but to contribute by your prayers to the conversion of sinners and to the sanctification of souls it is not necessary to be heard or seen, to know the persons whom you lead into the way of salvation, or to be known by them. By a prayer made here in union with the Sacred Heart of Jesus for the conversion of heathens, you may cause a grace to fall upon a dying Chinese or American savage, and open the gates of Heaven to him.

That power is unlimited finally as to the time and manner in which it may be exercised. We must not imagine that it belongs only to formal prayers, to particular words recited at stated times, or to lonely meditations made in the church or in some domestic sanctuary. No, we may exercise it as Jesus, Mary, and Joseph did at Nazareth, by intentions which change all our works into prayers. It is in that sense that our Lord has ordered us to pray always, and not to faint. The intention is the soul of our works, and whatever be their body, their outward shape, provided they are conformable to the law of God, the intention which animates them gives them merit according to its purity. But of all intentions the purest, the most perfect, the most meritorious, is certainly the intention of Divine charity which animates the Heart of Jesus. If therefore at the beginning of each day, and, if possible, sometimes during the day, we unite our intentions with the intentions of the Heart of Jesus, if we offer our prayers, our actions, our sufferings for the conversion of sinners, for the sanctification of the clergy and of pious souls, for the defence and triumph of the Church, that is enough to render all those actions apostolic, and to give them, together with a much greater merit for ourselves, a much greater efficacy in assisting the work of God.

Such is in its nature and in its essential practice the Apostleship of Prayer. There still remains much to be said about its necessity, its advantages, and the method of its practice, but time does not permit. I will conclude with the words of Jeremias to Judas Machabeus which I quoted at the beginning of my discourse. It is our Divine Lord Who addresses these words to every one of you, while He offers you that all-powerful weapon of prayer by which He Himself has wrought our salvation. "Take this holy sword a gift from God, wherewith thou shalt overthrow the adversaries of my people, Israel."

Yes, my dear brethren, it is my firm persuasion that by divesting His Church of all earthly advantages and depriving her of all human help our Lord wishes to show that He alone is her Saviour. And what He requires from us is to unite in an immense effort of prayer to obtain from Heaven the assistance which earth refuses. We must not remain idle. Every one of us must fight as did the Machabees, even though there is no human hope. But while we do on our part all that is in our power to move our fellow-men, we must display our energy in procuring help from on high. More than ever we must cry from the bottom of our hearts, Adveniat regnum tuum—“ Thy Kingdom come!" That is the war-cry which we must oppose to the cry of rebellion of the anti-Christian sect which has sworn to destroy the Kingdom of Christ upon earth. That is in fact the device of the Association of the Apostleship of Prayer; and in order to encourage us to repeat that motto, and to make it the rule of all our desires and ambitions, the Holy Father has granted an indulgence of one hundred days to all the Associates of the Apostleship who, wearing an image of the Sacred Heart upon their breasts make that aspiration either orally or mentally. Let us therefore repeat it often by the movement of our lips, and oftener still and more continually by the wishes of our heart, that the reign of the Sacred Heart of Jesus may be fully established in our hearts and in the hearts of all men. Nothing more is wanted to change earth into a paradise and the vestibule of the Heavenly Paradise. Amen.

******** - Latin Translations added by webmaster

Sermon on the Apostleship of Prayerby Rev. Father Ramiere, S.J.

Book on the Apostleship of Prayerby Rev. Father Ramiere, S.J.


The present month of October will be a time of special rejoicing to the many devout souls who have been accustomed to honour with a peculiar love the great saint of Avila. The feast of St. Teresa this year will be the three hundredth anniversary of her holy death. Spain, the country of her birth and the scene of her glorious labours for the honour of our Lord and His blessed Mother, will naturally take the lead in the joyous celebration of this centenary, and it would be long to tell of the preparations that have been made both at Alba, where her body lies, and at Avila and elsewhere, to make the anniversary truly glorious. Although English and Irish Catholics cannot expect to rival their brethren abroad in the magnificence of their celebration of this happy time, we may hope that it will not be forgotten among us, and that the fervour with which it is celebrated may serve to add fresh power to the prayers of this holy mother of so many millions of souls, either led by her to the perfect practice of the rule of our Blessed Lady, or converted to the faith by her intercessions, and the continual self-immolation of her religious sons and daughters.

It is a matter of great joy that we have among us so many convents and monasteries of the order of Mount Carmel, but we cannot but hope and pray that the centenary, which is now about to rejoice so many hearts in the Church of God, may be the signal for an increase in the number of children of our own country who fight the good fight of faith under this special banner of St. Teresa. We hear on all sides that the frivolities of the present generation, and the many dissipations which have crept in to what is still called Christian and Catholic life, work very fatally in the way of diminishing the number of the souls, who either desire to give themselves to God in the holy Order, of which St. Teresa is in modern times the chief glory, or who, having conceived the desire, have strength and perseverance enough to carry it out. It would certainly be one of the greatest possible triumphs that could be imagined for the enemy of mankind, if he could succeed in depriving our Lord of the glory and the delight which He receives from the devoted lives of the cloistered children of St. Teresa, and the Church the powerful aid which she draws from their prayers. We do not think that such a triumph will ever be granted to the author of all evil in this country. There is much in the English character which fits the true children of our country for the solid, sober, and most enduring, though most happy life of the Teresian religious, and it would show that all true spiritual courage and manliness had died out among us, if there were wanting a constant supply of recruits for this holy warfare from among ourselves. We hope, indeed, for more than this—we hope for an increase in the number of inmates of these holy homes and of these holy homes themselves; for at present we do not, in all the new freedom and expansion of which we boast, and for which we owe God such deep gratitude, furnish to the Order of St. Teresa more subjects than were furnished to it in the dark days when the Church was persecuted, when it was impossible for Englishmen or women to live at peace in their own country under the habit and rule of Mount Carmel. There must be some lamentable influence at work, if we cannot supply, to so noble a vocation, more than we could supply when those who followed it had to cross the seas in order to be unmolested in their service to our Lord and His Blessed Mother.

The illustration to which these remarks are appended speaks for itself to all those who are acquainted with the life of the glorious Mother of the Reform of Mount Carmel. It relates to the famous incident in her childhood, when she set out with her little brother, four years older than herself, on a journey which the two children fondly hoped might lead them to the land of the Moors, when they might have the blessed privilege of laying down their lives as martyrs for the faith of our Lord. "The two children set out," says the latest English biographer of the Saint, "thinking, perhaps, that the land of the Moors, of whom they had heard so much as the deadly enemies of their faith and nation, could not be far off. They put up a little stock of food, and then went stealthily out of the Adaja Gate towards Salamanca, and crossed the bridge, but they were soon met by a brother of their father's, Francis Alvarez de Cepeda, who took them home to their mother. They had already been missed, and Dona Beatriz was in fear that they might have fallen into a well, as all her search for them had proved fruitless. There was a little scene when the two culprits were questioned by their young mother as to their escape, and the historian relates the tradition that Rodrigo, who was four years the elder of the two, laid the blame on the 'little one,' who, as he said, wished to see God, and to die as soon as possible in order that she might do so."

We fear that if young children of the age -of Teresa and her brother would probably, in our days, know their geography a little better than they did, they are not likely to be brought up in such a way as to conceive the desire of seeing God as soon as possible, and of setting out on a journey for the sake of gaining the crown of martyrdom. What a modern fine lady would say to her little girl, who attempted anything of the sort, it is not so easy to imagine. But many English Catholic mothers have not hesitated to send their "little ones"—somewhat older than Teresa, certainly—to the lands where alone they conld serve God after the example of this Saint.



At first sight it may seem, no doubt, to most altogether incongruous to attribute such a quality as ambition to the Sacred Heart—that Heart which our Lord Himself tells us is meek and humble; and this arises from a natural habit of regarding ambition only as a human vice. Most of us, alas, know only one ambition—that infatuated thirst for the things of the world, which makes its blind children debase themselves in all sorts of ways to obtain a little vain honour or esteem, to throw away the peace of their conscience to gain the applause of fools.

Those who love God, in their fear of this bad passion, oppose it too commonly by one virtue, by modesty, and consider that in humbling themselves they fulfil all justice, and while they penetrate their own hearts with the sense of their own unworthiness, they contentedly see all others lift themselves above their heads.

Let us, however, see that our Lord has taught us another lesson than this. Humility assuredly He loves and praises, nor can we love it too much, but He would have us no less recognize our supernatural dignity, and by virtue of it despise as worthless the poor greatness which perishes so soon.

And, moreover, even this generous disdain of human honour ought to be nothing but a first step, but a sweeping away of the foolish delusions which might blind our eyes to that true greatness which is ours, and which He has done so much, and now longs so much, to invest us with. A crown, a throne is promised "to him who shall overcome" (Apoc. iii. 21). It is the ambition of the Heart of Jesus that we should win it. Surely that ambition should fill our hearts also.

And what is the immensity of that Divine ambition for us, Who but Himself can know? The proofs of it are in the Blood He has shed so prodigally, in the close and intimate union He has deigned to contract with us, making us in veriest truth members of His body, and our glory inseparable from His own. "And the glory which Thou has given to Me, I have given to them" (St. John xvii. 22).

Our share in this glory will be great in proportion to the greatness and strength of our ambition, and we never shall ambition for ourselves as greatly as the Heart which loves us desires. If then we reflect that each and every act of our heart with the intention, whether actual or habitual, of giving God glory, corresponds with a degree of glory gained in Heaven for all eternity, it becomes easy to understand how greatly this Divine ambition once fired in our hearts, will make those acts grow both in number and intensity. Jesus Christ has strewn the path we tread with eternal riches, but, alas, too often we are so indifferent to them that we will not take the trouble to stoop and make them our own. Those who have thought how the Heart of Jesus desires their glory, will, both for His sake and their own, aspire to respond with a nobler answer to His love.


Sacred Heart of Jesus! through the Immaculate Heart of Mary, I offer Thee the prayers, labours, and crosses of this day, in expiation of our offences, and for all Thy other intentions.

I offer them especially to obtain for Thy servants an ardent desire of eternal glory. Inspire us, O Jesus, with the determination not to lose the least of the infinite riches Thou hast purchased for us by Thy Precious Blood. Amen.

For the triumph of the Church and Holy See, and the Catholic regeneration of nations.

Apostolate of Prayer - October

Our Lady of the Pillar.*

" Regina Apostolorum." " Queen of Apostles."

IN incontestable tradition, resting upon the testimony of St. Jerome, St. Isidore, the ancient liturgies of Spain, and supported by a host of authorities and monuments, which treat it as a matter of history, tells us that St. James the Greater carried the Gospel to Spain. According to the best authorities, he undertook this mission soon after the martyrdom of St. Stephen. Thus, in the year following the ascension of our Lord, Spain had the Gospel preached to her.

But a more extraordinary legend is attached to this apostolic visit, which attributes to St. James himself the foundation of the church of our Lady del Pilar, venerated from time immemorial at Saragossa. Let us examine the foundation of this legend.

So many contradictions had arisen concerning the miraculous origin of the church, that Spain addressed herself to the Holy See, the guide of faith, to settle the controversy. Innocent XIII. then sat in St. Peter's chair. After a minute, exact, and careful investigation, the twelve car- dinals, in whose hands the affair rested, adopted the following account, which was approved by the * Notre Dame del Pilar.

Sacred Congregation of Rites on the 7th of August, 1723, and since inserted in the lessons of the office of the feast of our Lady del Pilar, celebrated on the 12th of October.

" Of all places which Spain offers to the veneration of the devout, the most illustrious is doubtless the sanctuary consecrated to God under the invocation of the Blessed Virgin, under the title of our Lady del Pilar, at Saragossa. " According to ancient and pious tradition, St. James the Greater, led by Providence into Spain, spent some time at Saragossa.* He there received a signal favour from the Blessed Virgin. As he was praying with his disciples one night, upon the banks of the Ebro, as the same tradition informs us, the Mother of God, who still lived, appeared to him, and commanded him to erect an oratory in that place.

" The apostle delayed not to obey this injunction, and with the assistance of his disciples soon constructed a small chapel. In the course of time a larger church was built and dedicated, which, with the dedication of St. Saviour's, is kept as a festival in the city and diocese of Saragossa on the 4th of October

Before the publication of this statement, Pope Calixtus III., in a bull dated 1456, had encouraged pilgrimages to our Lady del Pilar, acknowledged the miracles performed at her shrine, and the prodigy of its foundation. The popular legends, however, are much fuller than the one we have just given. They add that St. James, having visited Oviedo and other places, stopped for some time at Saragossa, where he increased the number of his disciples to such an extent that he assembled * Then called Caesar-Augusta. them every evening in a quiet spot on the banks of the Ebro, where he instructed them in the faith, and told them of the mysteries of the kingdom of God. When one evening, near midnight, the faithful who surrounded the holy apostle heard choirs of angels chanting Ave Maria gratia plena ; and at the same time they beheld, in the midst of the heavenly troop, the figure of a lady, of exquisite beauty, seated on a marble pillar. St. James, recognising the Mother of God, fell on his knees before her.

She* told him to erect a church on the spot where she appeared; and the marble pillar was allowed to remain as a testimony of the truth of the apparition. The apostle obeyed. A chapel was erected, and an image of the Blessed Virgin placed on the miraculous pillar, which still attracts the notice of pious pilgrims. Such is the tradition. The Blessed Virgin is represented erect with her Divine Son in her arms, who holds a dove in his hand.

The piety of the Spaniards afterwards erected a handsome church on this spot ; the ancient chapel now forms a crypt under the chancel. It is 36 feet long by 25 feet broad. Many believe it to be the original chapel ; but this is scarcely probable. It is splendidly decorated ; and though the wars in the early part of this century have despoiled it of a great portion of its wealth, it still remains a splendid sanctuary.*

* St. James returned from Spain to Jerusalem, where he was the first of the apostles to suffer martyrdom. It is said that he took with him some disciples from Spain who returned with his body to their native country. St. been a famous resort of pilgrims ; and there is no one who has not heard of Compostelo. The name of this city itself James is reverenced as the apostle of Spain, and has on many occasions specially protected that great Catholic country. The place where his relics are kept has long is a corruption of St. James the apostle. It was first called in Spanish Giacomo Apostolo, then Como Postolo, and finally Compostelo.

Among the many miracles which have been obtained by the intercession of the Blessed Virgin in her chapel at Saragossa, the following is perhaps the most remarkable and the most astonishing. We also are guided in our selection by the many proofs and testimonies which are attached to it, and to its being given by the Bollandists, whose learning and critical acumen we suppose no one will deny.

" The miracle we are about to record happened in our own time. It occurred to a young man who recovered the use of a leg through the intercession of our Lady of the Pillar.

" His name was Michael Pellicer. His parents were poor people of Calanda, in Arragon ; but he worked with one of his uncles in Valencia. At the age of nineteen, he fell from a cart, heavily laden with corn ; and the wheel passed over his right leg, which was broken. This happened in the year 1638. " The uncle and nephew being both poor, the wounded man was taken to the hospital at Valencia. Several remedies were applied to the broken limb without success. As he grew worse, they yielded to his entreaties to be taken to the great hospital at Saragossa, where his devotion to our Lady of the Pillar led him to hope for succour.

" Before entering the ward, he begged to be laid in the subterranean chapel before our Lady's venerated image. Suffering as he was, he made his confession, heard mass, and received the holy communion. He then, with perfect resignation, was conveyed to the hospital, and placed under the care of Dr. John D'Estranga, a surgeon of great eminence at that time.

" This surgeon was alarmed at the sight of his patient's leg, and instantly declared there was no hope, save in amputation. The leg was accordingly cut off a little below the knee, and the dead limb buried.

"Michael Pellicer thought that it had not pleased our Lady to heal him, and that he merited his sufferings, which he endured with the greatest patience and submission to the will of God. During the painful operation, the only exclamations heard to escape his lips were fervent aspirations to his dear Patroness — our Blessed Lady, whom he most tenderly loved. When the amputation was over, and the part bound up, he went on crutches to our Lady's shrine, and returned thanks for the strength given him to undergo the operation. While engaged in prayer, feeling his wound sore, he thought of rubbing it with some of the oil of the lamp which hung before the image, but was told it would do him harm, unless a miracle changed its nature. He, however, still persisted in applying the oil to his leg. The wound healed, and he lived for two years in Saragossa, well known for his devotion to our Blessed Lady, at the entrance to whose chapel he received the alms of the people.

" In the beginning of the year 1640, a good canon, hearing that the poor cripple greatly desired to visit his parents, gave him a little mule. Michael Pellicer mounted it, and returned to Calanda. As he passed through the neighbouring villages, he received alms from the people, and visited the different churches.

" One evening after his return (it was the 29th of March), feeling very fatigued, he placed his crutches by the fireside, where his parents sat, and went to bed. At eleven o' clock, before re- tiring to her room, the mother went to see whether her son was asleep, or whether his fatigues had made him unwell. She rubbed her eyes with astonishment at the sight of two feet at the end of the bed, having left her son three hours ago with but one leg. She thought that it might be one of the soldiers, then quartered in the town, who had taken possession of her son's bed, and ran to call her husband.

" He uncovered the face, and instantly recognised his son in the sleeping man. The noise of their movements awoke Michael, who exclaimed :

" ' Oh, why did you awaken me from so sweet a dream, and so beautiful a sight ? I was in the holy chapel of our Lady of the Pillar, and there, in the presence of my dear Protectress, two angels restored to me my lost leg in recompense for my persevering confidence in the Mother of my Lord.’

" ' Give thanks to God and our Lady, my dear son,’ cried both parents; 'you have not had a vain dream, for your leg is indeed restored to you.’

"Michael Pellicer was yet ignorant of the miracle which had been wrought upon him ; but he sprang out of bed, and the neighbours, hearing the cries of joy, ran in, and joining the good parents in their wish to render thanks for the miracle, conducted the young man in triumph to the church. " A singular circumstance was attached to this miraculous cure, and which it would seem to baffle the reasoning of the incredulous — the restored leg was reversed. Was it to afford another trial of the young man's faith? Was it a sign that certain extraordinary favours are only completed in the sanctuary? Was it to make the miracle more manifest? However we may judge, so it was. As soon as Michael Pellicer had prostrated him- self at the foot of our Lady's altar, and poured forth, in company with the rector, a fervent prayer, and while the people sung the Salve Regina, the leg turned to its proper position; and he rose and stood firm on both legs, who the day before could not move six steps without the aid of his crutches.

" Many of his friends accompanied him to Saragossa, where he went to return thanks in the chapel of our Lady of the Pillar. The miracle was juridically examined, and all the facts connected with it were attested by many witnesses, and authenticated by notaries, professors, and surgeons. A bright red line appeared round the leg, and remained there during the life of Pellicer. The miracle was authentically published on the 27th of April, 1641, by the Archbishop of Saragossa."

Our Lady of the Pillar

Columbus and Queen Isabella

John A. Mooney.
IN the splendid tributes I have quoted from the works of the eminent Bishop of Chiapa, his admiration and affection for Columbus were eloquently set forth. A man of extraordinary virtue, of rare acquirements, of remarkable talent, chosen of God, and directing all his work, especially, to the honor of God; a man who performed the most wonderful achievements amid the most incredible trials,—such a man is the Columbus of Las Casas. With his warm heart and just soul, the Dominican could not help admiring the heroic Discoverer. The affection of Las Casas was no less deep than his admiration, as his own words frequently testify. One passage, more than all the others, in the Historia, evidences the sympathy of the Bishop with the Admiral.

Completing his narrative of the life of Columbus, Las Casas relates the sad story of the great man's death; one of the most affecting stories recorded in history. As, in his imagination, the ardent Dominican reconstructed the scene, and looked upon the worn body of the benefactor of two worlds, upon the few faithful friends, upon the mean pallet, and the penury of the hired lodging, he could not restrain his feelings. A moment he waited, until the high soul had flown up to the Infinite that alone could satisfy its sublime aspirations. Then Las Casas penned these words: "And thus passed from this life, in a condition of extreme misery and bitter affliction, and, as he said, without a roof under which he might rest his body, or protect it from the elements, the man who by his own industry had discovered a new and more felicitous world than the one of which we had a knowledge before. He died dispossessed and despoiled of the estate and honor that he had earned by such immense and incredible dangers, toilings, and travail, despoiled ignominiously, without the form of law, having been fettered, imprisoned without a hearing, without a conviction, without an accusation, without an opportunity to plead a defense, as if those who judged him were people devoid of reason, foolish, stupid, absurd, and worse than brutal barbarians."'

To all young women and young men who are culturing themselves, I commend these words of Las Casas. Remembering them no one shall ever feel the want of becoming epithets when passing a verdict on the criminals who are managing the: Case Against Columbus. The Spaniards dispossessed and despoiled a living man. Their American kinsmen of our day would rob the illustrious dead; rob him of the honor earned by such immense labors done in the face of incredible dangers; rob him lawlessly. And if those who despoiled Columbus living, deserved to be called mad, foolish, stupjid, absurd, shall we hesitate to qualify the men who would dishonor his grave, as: "worse than brutal barbarians!"

These " translated parts of Las Casas," are indicative of the frankness of his manner when dealing with injustice. Though a historian, he is no mere recorder of facts. Always a jurist and a theologian, he is, at the same time, a teacher of morality. The learned Dominican's conclusions on the subject of slavery, many non-Catholics and many unbelievers have accepted, but -not one of them dare accept his principles. His method, as I have already hinted, is thorough and exacting. Denouncing all acts that he considered illicit or immoral, he also condemned every person who participated, however remotely, in these acts. Nor did he stop there; as I shall illustrate by stating the scope of his judgment on Columbus. Reviewing his career, Las Casas insists that several of the Admiral's acts were illicit. The Admiral was in good faith, he had a " holy intention," he did not know the law; so Las Casas firmly believes. However, he questions whether the Admiral's ignorance was always invincible. If for these illicit acts he did not deserve punishment hereafter, Las Casas inclined to the opinion that Columbus deserved to be punished for them in this world. Indeed, Las Casas thought he saw the hand of God inflicting punishment on the Admiral. His imprisonment, poverty, loss of honors, loss of health, were, according to the learned Dominican, so many Providential chastisements. These views, no one is bound to accept; and there are many who do not accept them. An acquaintance with them is, nevertheless, desirable and indeed necessary to a right understanding of the works of Las Casas, and of his judgments on men and affairs.

1 Coleccion de documentos indditos para la historia de Espafia, vol. lxiv„ p. 195

The policy adopted by Ferdinand and Isabella in dealing with the Caribs, and with the other Indians who warred against the Spanish colonists, did not commend itself to Las Casas. On his first landing in the New World, Columbus formed a most favorable opinion of the Indians he fell in with. They were the mildest, the gentlest of people, he thought. Guacanagari, a most friendly cacique, told him, though, of some bad Indians, the Caribas, who attacked the good Indians, carried them off, abused them, and even ate them. Columbus heard of these savage people regretfully and indignantly, and promised that his mighty masters would punish them and subdue them. In the letter to Sanchez, and in the diary of the first voyage, the Admiral records what he has heard about these cannibals; and he also relates his experience with them at Samana. On the second voyage, he discovered the Caribee islands, Ayay, Turuqueira, and Ceyre, and convinced himself that the Caribs were barbarous cannibals, a combative and ferocious race. "Their arms were bows and arrows pointed with the bones of fishes, or shells of tortoises, and poisoned with the juice of a certain herb. They made descents upon the islands, ravaged the villages, carried off the youngest and handsomest of the women, whom they retained as servants or companions, and made prisoners of the men, to be killed and eaten."' With the Caribs, the Admiral had more than one encounter, and, having captured several of the savages, he carried them off to Navidad.

A couple of months after his arrival at Navidad, he sent home twelve caravels, under Antonio de Torres. (Feb. 2d, 1494.) The captive Caribs were shipped at the same time. To De Torres, the Admiral committed a Memorial, dated Jan. 30th, 1494, addressed to Ferdinand and Isabella. In this Memorial he stated in detail, the condition and the needs of the colony, and he made certain suggestions and requests. In two clauses of this important document, the Admiral submits a plan for the spiritual and social improvement of the Caribs. Every biographer of Columbus refers to these two clauses, though very few writers present a fair summary of his words. Without translating each word of the Admiral, I shall try to give both the sense and the spirit of his language. The Memorial is composed in the form of a letter of instruction to De Torres.

1 Irving, vol. i., p. 376.

In the first of the two clauses, the Admiral writes: 'You (De Torres) will say to their Highnesses that as there is no language here, by means of which the Indians can be instructed in our holy Faith, as their Highnesses desire, and as we also desire, we send, on these vessels, several cannibal men, women, boys and girls. Their Highnesses can put these cannibals out at service, under persons competent to teach them our language, and little by little place them under those who will be more careful with them than with other slaves. As the cannibals learn to speak and to understand Spanish very slowly, they will learn more quickly in Spain than here, and will be better interpreters between us and the native Indians. There is very little communication between these islands, and hence there are differences between the language of one and another island; and, because the cannibal islands are larger and more populous, the opinion here is that it could only be good to capture cannibal men and women, and to send them to Castille, for, in this way they would be cured at once of their inhuman custom of eating men, and besides, having learned our language in Castille, they could receive Baptism more speedily, thus advantaging their souls. Furthermore, as the peaceable Indians suffer loss through these cannibals, and indeed fear them so much that they are terrified at the sight of a single man-eater, our people would acquire great credit if we captured these cannibals and made them prisoners of war. The people of all the islands, seeing the kind treatment that the good receive, and the punishment inflicted on the bad, will quickly become so obedient that they may be ruled as the vassals of their Highnesses, and, in due time, wherever a man may be found, all will do, not only what we desire, but, of their own motion, they will do what they know would please us.'

As our readers know, the Memorial committed by the Admiralto De Torres, reached the Sovereigns, who considered it most carefully, clause by clause. They answered the Memorial, not by a special letter, but by inscribing, on the margin of the Memorial, their will and pleasure concerning each particular suggestion or request made by the Admiral. This document, as annotated by the Sovereigns, was remitted to Columbus. The text of the Memorial, and of the royal instructions, has been preserved, fortunately. Thus we know the answer of Ferdinand and Isabella to the suggestions offered in the clause above translated. I quote the words of their Highnesses: "Tell him what has been done in the matter of the cannibals that came here. This is very good, and thus he should do, except that he may manage there, as it may be possible, that they are converted to our holy Catholic Faith, and in like manner let him manage with the inhabitants of the islands where he is.”

This answer of Ferdinand and Isabella, as well as the proposal of Columbus, are generally slurred by the biographers, who hasten to the second clause, which affords them an opportunity of expressing regret or indignation, and of composing rhetorical sentences on the " rights of man " and on the inhuman bigotry of the Spaniards, and indeed of the Catholic Church; a bigotry very natural before the sweet spirit of Reformation breathed " peace and progress " over the surface of the whole world. To me, the first clause of the Memorial, and the Sovereigns' response, are as noteworthy as the second clause and the answer thereto. Before examining the text of the clause and of the answer already quoted, I shall give a free rendering of the second of the two clauses, with which we are concerned. Thus it reads:

'You (De Torres) will say to their Highnesses, that the notion of serving the souls of the cannibals, as well as of the peaceable Indians, has suggested the thought that the more of the cannibals sent to Spain, the better it would be for them, and also for their Highnesses. Considering the number of cattle, beasts of burden, and agricultural instruments, needed here for the sustenance of both Spaniards and Indians, a sufficient number of caravels could be licensed by their Highnesses to carry these things here, every year, and to sell them at regular prices. The cannibal slaves could be exchanged for them. These cannibals are bold. well proportioned and of fair understanding, and, if redeemed from their inhuman habits, would, we think, make better slaves than any other. As soon as they would be removed from here, they should lose their inhuman habits. A trust-worthy man should be placed on each caravel, and he should see that the vessel landed at Hispaniola, and nowhere else. Their Highnesses could collect their customs-duties on the slaves thus taken to Spain. You (De Torres) will bring, or send, an answer an to this matter, for here the necessary dispositions may be made with more confidence, if their Highnesses should think well of the affair.'

Opposite to this clause of the Memorial, the Sovereigns of Spain wrote: "In this matter let it be delayed for the present until another transport comes from there, and the Admiral writes what he thinks on the subject.'"

Slurring the first of these two clauses, the biographers avoid the answer of the Sovereigns to that clause; and, distorting the meaning of the royal answer to the second clause, the biographers, conferring no compliment on Ferdinand and Isabella, do an injustice to Columbus. While the import of the words of the Sovereigns was not fully apprehended by Mr. Helps, he is far from being as incorrect in his estimate of the Admiral's proposal, as Mr. Irving was. "Among the many sound and salutary suggestions in his letter," Mr. Irving says, "there is one of a most pernicious tendency, written in that mistaken view of natural rights prevalent at the day, but fruitful of much wrong and misery in the world."' Mr. Helps thinks that the arguments of Columbus are weighty. "It must be allowed," he says " that they have much force in them, and it may be questioned whether many of those persons who, in these days, are the strongest opponents of slavery, would then have had that perception of the impending danger of its introduction which Los Reyes appear to have entertained from their answer to this part of the document.”

1 Navarrete, Coleccion de los Viages, vol. i., pp. 231-233.
'The life and Voyages. Hudson Edition. Vol. i., p. 421.
* The Conquerors of the New World and their Bondsmen. London, 1848. Vol. i., p. 121.

And now let us examine the text of the Memorial and of the answer of the Sovereigns. Columbus, in the first clause, informs the King and Queen of his sending cannibals to them. Placing them under good masters, and treating them better than other slaves, these cannibals, he thinks, will learn the Spanish language, become civilized, and, returning to their own country, aid in converting the Indians, good and bad. As to the cannibals, they are an inhuman people, who terrify the peaceable Indians and violate the laws of nature. If the Spaniards captured them and made them prisoners of war, the new country would be benefited, pacified, and the good Indians would be grateful to those who punished the bad Indians according to their deserts.

Dismissing the details of the proposition contained in this first clause, let us consider the real question submitted to the Sovereigns through De Torres: Do your Highnesses favor the policy of capturing the cannibals here, and of making slaves of them, utilizing them first in Spain, and afterwards, in the New World? Such is the question the Sovereigns had to consider and to answer; and there is nothing indefinite about the answer. First: they retained the cannibals brought over by De Torres, and they employed these cannibals as slaves. Secondly: they approved the proposal to capture the cannibals and to treat them as prisoners of war. As to transporting them to Spain, the Sovereigns offered no objection. They affirmed their desire for the conversion of all the Indians, and left it to the Admiral to effect the conversion of the cannibals, and of the other Indians, according to circumstances. The answer to the first clause authorized Columbus to make slaves of the cannibals, and, if he preferred, to retain them as slaves in the New World. Thus cannibal slavery, at least, would have been introduced into the Indies; not at the suggestion of Columbus, but by the express direction of the Sovereigns.

In the second clause, Columbus added nothing to the proposal made in the first clause, except the outline of a plan by which the affair could be systematized, and effected in an orderly and profitable manner. Did the Sovereigns evidence an extraordinary "perception of an impending danger," as Mr. Helps imagined? No! Did the Sovereigns protest, condemn, resent, forbid? How could they! Answering the first clause, they had applauded the idea of capturing the cannibals, and of making slaves of them. They favored a plan to retain them in the New World as slaves. Responding to the second clause, where Columbus suggested the details of a scheme, under which the cannibals would be transported to Spain, methodically, the Sovereigns were non-committal. As to this detailed scheme, said Ferdinand and Isabella, we prefer to decide nothing until the Admiral writes his opinion of the matter in a second letter.

In his far-reaching argument against the Spanish policy in the New World, Las Casas attacked the crown, deliberately, as we have said. However, he was always most careful to excuse Isabella, on account of her goodness of heart, her piety and her conscientiousness. Following him, many biographers of Columbus, though repudiating the argument of Las Casas, condemn the Admiral and excuse the Queen. Isabella needs no apologist. The policy she adopted, in dealing with the cannibal slaves—a policy followed by Columbus,—was a conscientious policy, a lawful and just policy; a policy continued by her successors because they were advised of its legality and justice. Columbus did not directly ask the Crown to send him a juridical opinion as to whether he could lawfully make slaves of the cannibals. He assumed that their enslavement would be licit. Still it was this very question that the Sovereigns were compelled first to consider; and their decision was in the affirmative. Had they not put their decision in writing, their retention of the cannibals delivered to them by De Torres would have been a practical decision of the matter.

Mr. Irving was troubled about the "pernicious tendency" of the proposal of Columbus, and indulged in the hackneyed and laughable cant about " the mistaken view of natural rights prevalent in the fifteenth century." I would wager that Queen Isabella could have taught Mr. Irving more sound doctrine about natural rights than he acquired during his sojourn in the world of the nineteenth century.

Habitually, when criticising the policy inaugurated by the Spanish sovereigns, and applied to the cannibals, the biographers of Columbus write, " knowingly," of an opinion current in the days of Ferdinand and Isabella, to the effect that: Christians had a right to enslave all infidels. Among the uninstructed such an opinion may have been common, but the Spanish Crown did not base its policy on this mistaken view. The Crown acted in accordance with the Law of Nations. This law of nations is not a fixed and immutable law. According to times and circumstances it has varied, as it will vary. Thanks to Las Casas, we have acquired a knowledge of the provisions of this law, in regard to slavery, at the end of the fifteenth century, and during the sixteenth century. Through capture in a just war, a just title could be acquired to a slave. Still, among Christian nations, this title was no longer recognized, because, through the influence of the Catholic Church, the Christian powers had been induced to give up the custom of enslaving prisoners. The title acquired in a just war was, nevertheless, recognized, where a Christian power was warring against a nation that still persisted in making slaves of prisoners. During the fifteenth and sixteenth centuries, the only nations that enslaved Christian captives were the infidel nations; and consequently the only slaves captured by the Christian nations were infidels. The Christians did not enslave infidels because they were infidels, but because the infidels enslaved Christian captives. The right of the Christian was based on the law of just retaliation. The Moors and Saracens enslaved the Christians whom they captured in war, and treated them most barbarously. Very justly, the Christians, in return, compensated themselves for the losses and injuries they suffered through the enslavement of their Christian countrymen, and through the barbarities practised upon them.

Mr. Irving, like some recent writers of more pretension, abused the term: "natural rights." This term is comprehensive, and includes rights appertaining, at least, to all men who respect natural rights. Christian men have rights no less natural than the rights of infidels. Civilized men have rights that are as natural, and therefore as imperative, as the rights of savages. When Ferdinand and Isabella took possession of the Indies, through Columbus, they assumed a sovereignty over the new world. All the inhabitants thereof became their vassals. Among these inhabitants, the Sovereigns found many who were peaceable; and some who were unruly. Of the unruly, the Caribs were the more notable. They warred, as they willed, on the peaceable Indians,ravished their wives and daughters, enslaved men and women, and inhumanly killed and ate those that pleased them. For the Spaniards, the Caribs had no more respect than they had for the good Indians. The "natural rights" of their peaceable vassals, the Sovereigns were bound to protect. They could have no hesitation about warring on the Caribs; and there was no reason, founded in nature, why Ferdinand and Isabella should have hesitated to enslave the savages who not only made slaves of those they captured, but who also killed their captives, and ate those who were tender enough to gratify a "self-cultured " Carib palate. From Mr. Irving, I have quoted a passage in which it is said that, among other inhuman practices, the Caribs were guilty of the inhumanity of fighting with poisoned arrows. By itself, this unnatural habit outlawed them. In the fifteenth century the use of poisoned weapons was forbidden to Christians, under pain of excommunication; and this penalty applied even in a just war against infidels. By the law of the Catholic Church, to-day, a Catholic soldier firing a poisoned bullet, is ipso facto excommunicated. Sympathy with the " natural right " of the inhuman Caribs, is sympathy wasted. In this year of grace, if a Christian nation found any of its subjects threatened by man-eaters, who fought with poisoned weapons, it is more than probable that, warring against these savages, the commanders of the Christian army would kill every captive. Indeed, a tender-hearted General, following the example of the English in India during the revolt of the Sepoys, might be tempted to blow the cannibal outlaws to pieces, at the cannon's mouth. The Sepoys were not cannibals. Our contemporary rhetoric may be more humane than that of the fifteenth century, but we have not forgotten, in practice, to temper humanitarianism with exemplary "justice."

Under the circumstances, the proposal of Columbus and the decision of the Spanish Sovereigns, were prudent and gentle. There is no word of exterminating the Caribs; no word of punishing them with severity. On the contrary, every word of the Admiral and of the kings, is charitable. As a civilizing measure, especially, is the slavery of the Indians considered; a measure through which they should be freed from their inhuman habits, civilized, accustomed to law, instructed in the language of Castille and, finally, converted to the holy Catholic Faith. Civilized and converted, the former cannibals would return to their own land to assist in civilizing and converting the native Indians. Neither the King, nor the Queen, nor Columbus, need an apology for their mild policy toward the Caribs.

Isabella was a true Queen. She permitted none of her subjects to entertain a doubt concerning her opinion and decision as to the policy to be followed in dealing with the inhuman cannibals. Three years after Columbus had been unjustly and ignominiously deposed from the governorship of the Indies, the Queen, with her own hand, instructed De Lares in words that admit of no misunderstanding. Under the date of October 30th, 1503, she wrote that: "Being advised that Indians called cannibals war on the Christians, continually, and have done them much injury, and are, as they have been, hardened in their evil purposes, she grants license and privilege to all persons whomsoever to oppose these cannibals. Every one may and should capture the cannibals and carry them away from their lands and islands, and may and should bring them into Her Kingdoms and Seignories, and into any other parts and places whatsoever, as the captors will or prefer, paying to the Crown the share that belongs to it; and the captors may sell the cannibals and employ them profitably, without thereby incurring any penalty whatsoever; because, if the Christians transport them from those parts, and make use of them, the cannibals can be more easily converted and attracted to the holy Catholic Faith."'

From this document, it is evident that, when Ferdinand and Isabella, answering the second clause of the Memorial sent by Columbus in the care of De Torres, delayed their decision until the Admiral should write more at length, neither the King nor the Queen was shocked at the suggestion of Columbus that the cannibals might be exchanged for cattle, or for agricultural implements. By the letter of 1503, anybody and everybody is licensed to sell the Caribs, and to make slaves of them. Nor was the delay of the Crown, in 1494, due to any hesitation on the part of the King, or of the Queen, to profit by laying cusloms-duties on the transported cannibals. The letter of October 30th, 1503, especially reserves to the Crown its legal share of the proceeds of all sales of cannibal slaves. The policy of the Spanish Sovereigns was based on the Law of Nations. Let those who will, compose phrases about "mistaken views of natural law!" The Caribs were outlaws, by the Law of Nations, and indeed by the natural law.'

1 Navarrete, Coleccion de los Viages, vol. ii., p. 416'

In his works, as we have already stated, Las Casas presented his views on slavery as it existed in the Indies and on slavery in general. That a slave could be held by a good title, he acknowledged. The titles recognized by Las Casas were those accepted by the Law of Nations, and by the Canon Law. The title by purchase from a lawful owner was good; and so was the title by birth. The child of a legal slave, became a slave. The title acquired in a just war, the Bishop of Chiapa recognized. And, among just wars, he counted one licitly undertaken in the interest of Christianity. Our Lord and Saviour commissioned His Apostles to teach all nations. Under this commission, the Apostles, and their duly appointed successors, acquired a right to teach the Faith to all nations. Where they will, among the infidels, those holding Christ's commission have a right to preach the Gospel. Arms, they cannot bring with them. Their work is, eminently, a work of peace. Still, no one may forcibly oppose the peaceable missionaries of Christ. The infidel may reject the Faith; but he may not oppress, or violently impede the appointed teachers of the Faith. Infidel oppressors of the missionaries of the Gospel, could be justly attacked by a Christian nation. The Saviour of the world had rights. His Church retains them.'

A war against infidels, who, with arms in their hands, refused to hear the voice of the ministers of Christ, was a just war. So Las Casas held; and held only because the law was on his side. Now, though Ferdinand and Isabella did not formally declare war against the Caribs on the sole ground that they persecuted the appointed teachers of the Gospel, the answer of the Sovereigns to Columbus, in 1494, and the letter of Isabella to De Lares, in 1503, show that the Spanish King and Queen were influenced by the savage resistance of the Caribs to the peaceable introduction of the Christian religion. A further proof of this fact is afforded by the instructions given by Cardinal Ximenes to the Jeronimites, in the year 1516.'

To the illustrious Dominican, Ximenes was most friendly. He was opposed to the enslavement of the peaceable Indians. Las Casas received from him the firmest support, as the writer of the Historia de Las lndias gratefully acknowledges. The Jeronimites were sent to the Indies, by Ximenes, in order to correct the abuses of which Las Casas complained. Instructing the Jeronimites as to the policy they should pursue, the Cardinal set forth the traditions of the policy of the Crown toward the inhuman Caribs. It is from Las Casas that we quote the following "Remedy," approved by the great Ximenes. "The colonists will be much benefited if his Highness gives them caravels, properly equipped, so that the colonists themselves may go and capture the Caribs, who eat men and are an intractable people; and they are slaves because they have been unwilling to receive the preachers, and because they molest the Christians and those who are converted to our holy faith, and kill them and eat them; and because, sharing among themselves those that they capture, they make slaves of them; but under cover of capturing the Caribs, the colonists may not go to the other islands nor to the terra firma, nor capture those who dwell there, under penalty of death and of loss of property."''

In this short passage we have a complete explication of the reasons that determined the royal policy. The Caribs were cannibals; they attacked the Spaniards and the peaceful Indians; they made slaves of those they captured; and, in addition, they impeded the peaceful mission of the preachers. According to the Law of Nations, a war on the Caribs was a just war; and, by the same law, the captive Caribs were justly enslaved. The Crown had not merely the Law of Nations to support it, but also the Law of Nature.'

Las Casas, it is true, contested the truth of the fact, accepted by Ximenes, that the Caribs were unwilling to receive the preachers. The charitable Dominican claimed that, up to the year 1516, the Caribs did not know a preacher from any one else; and that 1 Coleccion, etc., para la Historia de Espana, vol. lxv.. p. 307. they had resisted, not the preachers, but wicked Spaniards, whom' they had always found to be cruel highwaymen.' His claim,: however, did not avail, though it was considered by Cardinal Ximenes and by the Council he selected to study the affairs of the Indies.

1 Coleccion, etc., para la Historia de Espana, vol. lxv.. p. 307.

Mr. Irving, and, following him, some less competent biographers, pretend to doubt the testimony adduced in proof of the cannibalism of the Caribs. The author of the " Life and Voyages" thought that " many of the pictures given us of this extraordinary race of people have been colored by the fears of the Indians and the prejudices of the Spaniards." Certain signs were misapprehended by the Admiral and his men. Imagination, and not reason, influenced them to form a baseless opinion that the Caribs were man-eaters. Mr. Irving's imagination led him astray. Columbus made no mistake. Mr. John Fiske states the truth, tersely. "The prevalence of cannibalism," he says, " not only in these islands, but throughout a very large part of aboriginal America, has been abundantly proved." * The argument by which Las Casas defined, limited, the title of the Spanish Sovereigns, in the New World, is logical, powerful. Neither Spain, however, nor any other nation, has accepted the premisses, or the conclusion of the great Dominican's argument. Discovery and occupation have been recognized, invariably, as founding a title of sovereignty. Under the title acquired, through the discovery and occupation by Columbus, the kings of Spain proceeded to exercise a sovereignty over the New World. The Indians were their vassals, having rights that the Crown was bound to protect, and duties that the Crown was bound to enforce. To life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness, the new vassals had a right. And it was to protect and defend the lives, the liberties and the happiness of their loyal and peaceful vassals, that the kings of Spain pursued and punished the Caribs. These barbarians were punished in accordance with law; not Spanish law, but universal law. The Caribs were marauders; they fought with poisoned weapons; they made slaves of their captives and ate the flesh of those they murdered. In the interest of peace, of humanity, of civilization, the Caribs were, in turn, enslaved Thus I sum up the argument for the Crown; an argument that cannot be refuted by phrases intended to excite the false sympathies of the uneducated.

1 Coleccion, etc., para la Historia de Espana, vol. lxv., p. 310. 'The Discovery of America, vol. i., p. 465, note.

The insignificant part played by Columbus in this transaction, demonstrates the ignorance or the malice of those who charge him with criminality. In the Memorial of 1494, he made a suggestion to the Sovereigns. He had no authority to adopt or enforce any policy; nor did he attempt to usurp an authority vested in the Crown alone. Ferdinand and Isabella adopted a policy, in 1494. The Caribs were pursued and enslaved, under the authority of the King and the Queen, and of no one else. The policy, formed by the Crown, was deliberately continued. Three years after the despoliation of Columbus, the Queen affirms and extends the policy introduced in 1494; and ten years after the Admiral's death, this same policy is reaffirmed. Whether the policy were just or unjust, it was not a policy of Columbus, but it was a policy of the Spanish Sovereigns. Their treatment of the Admiral in this affair enforces more strongly the position I maintained in a previous article. The Admiral was the subject of the Crown. He was a quasi-governor, not a king. What the Sovereigns ordered or permitted, he could do. On the Sovereigns, he was wholly dependent. If, instead of being licit, the policy of enslaving the cannibals had been illicit, the Crown would deserve condemnation. The Crown, not Columbus, made law for the Indies. "I have now reached the point," said the Discoverer of the New World, in his letter to Dona Juana de la Torre, "where there is no man, however vile, but thinks it his right to insult me. Still the day will come when the world will reckon it a virtue in him who has not consented to their abuse.“ That day has come. To-day we attribute no great virtue to one who defends a good man against insult or misrepresentation. Fairness and manliness are not extraordinary virtues. Lying and cowardice are nevertheless, contemptible vices. Those guilty of them publicly, deserve public punishment. Dealing with the vile, one may appeal to the law of just retaliation. How much better are they, than " brutal barbarians”'

Columbus and the Cannibals


Discovery of Americas

John A. Mooney.
In the October number of "Self Culture," a " Magazine of Knowledge," published at Chicago, in the interest of the " Home University League," some unnamed person prints an article entitled: "Columbus - An Historical Estimate." Having read the article, I have no hesitation in saying that the writer is one of the most dangerous of the Western manipulators of " self-culture." Solemnly do I warn all the members of the " Home University League" against him; cautioning them, that, if they do not guard their magazine of knowledge, by day and by night, he will blow it sky-high. And let me suggest that all the Home guards be men liberally educated.

Though he is alarmingly self-cultured, I can see that the writer of the " Historical Estimate " studied English under a Master; and this master was either Justin Winsor, to whose unique talent I have tried to do justice;1 or else the master was an honor-man of the Winsorian school of Style.

From the first sentence to the last, we note the pleasing, euphonious, nonsensical, and illiterate language of the Master. We read of one: " supplying an effective correction " ; of " Columbian views of history "; of " the public at large in connection with the World's Fair "; of " the proper celebration of four-hundred years of America "; of " statements that were alarmingly off the mark of truth or even of actual recital." I know of but one school in the United States where a pupil may learn to write thus, barbarously; it is the "alarmingly off" school of Justin Winsor.

In order to do full justice to the modest pupil of the Master, I shall detach a gem or two from the bejewelled pages of "Self Culture." Here is a literary diamond of the first water:
"He (Columbus) contrived to cut a great figure, but he is found, when the facts are properly considered, to have been a great man in no real and true sense, and to have been a good man only after the fashion of professions which were no restraint upon a full measure of the worst passions of the human animal."

1. American Cath. Quarterly Review, Oct. 1802. ,

In this glowing parure, I discover only one flaw; and it is only a tiny little flaw. Remove the gem on which are inscribed the words: "a full measure"; insert another gem with the words: "a half peck," and you have a thing of beauty; one that will everlastingly " contrive to cut a great figure." You cannot make sense out of the stuff! My dear and misfortunate Sir, the Winsorites do not print sense; they polish diamonds of illiteracy, and jewel unintelligent thoughts that are " alarmingly off."

One other precious gemlet of the Self-Culturer invites inspection:

"It seems, therefore, not amiss to get carefully into shape for student-readers the evidence on which what may be called the Case Against Columbus rests, and will forever rest." The dear, dainty thing it is! "Not amiss to get carefully into shape "; how nice! "The evidence on which what." O Master Winsor! thy pupil hath almost excelled thee; and, like thee, he shall" contrive to cut a great figure" in the "Whichwhat " literature, of which thou art the student-founder!

From these few specimens of " Whichwhat" English, my readers can form an estimate of the culture and capacity of the writer of the article on " Columbus," in the Magazine of Knowledge. Nor would the article deserve closer examination, were it not for the intelligent interest we have in the " Home University League." Only a heartless student could be silent, seeing the risk the Leaguers run of becoming "Whichwhaters" in history, as well as in literature.

To aid the " League " in forming an estimate of the Discoverer of America, the artificer of the article on " Columbus," quotes a certain Dr. Charles Parkhurst, " who has achieved distinction by his unflinching pulpit work." This gentleman, it is said, used the following language about Columbus:

"I think him the most consummate liar that I have ever found in the history of the country. He made lying a fine art, and practised it all his life. I do not say this because he was a Roman Catholic, but because he professed to be so profoundly religious, when, as a matter of fact he was very far from a saint. You can study his whole life, and you will find that it was one of fabrication and greed for gold. He not only lied himself, (the Doctor is a whichwhater!) to Ferdinand and Isabella, but he compelled his crew to lie also. Lying was not his worst trait either, for he was the first to establish slavery in America, which cursed the new country for centuries. He was not a benefactor, for all that he did was for gold. He would not sail on his voyage until he was made an admiral by the king and received a promise of fabulous remuneration."

After the self-cultured Dr. Charles F. Parkhurst, the historian of "Self Culture," appeals to "Hon. Charles Francis Adams, whose views occasioned the Boston Transcript to say that Mr. Adams said:

"Columbus brought with him the Inquisition, persecution and that greed for gold that brought with it so many misfortunes. Columbus was a bigot. Columbus was visionary America would have been better to have delayed that discovery one hundred years."

As if the "Columbian views " of these two speechmakers were not all-sufficient, the Chicago word-artist informs us that:

"Dr. Poole, the eminent scholar-librarian of Chicago, in two or three important articles, made clear that learning cannot accord Columbus the praise of either remarkable greatness, or what would now be considered respectable goodness."

With a peculiar delicacy, the name of Mr. Justin Winsor is introduced at the end of the "Whichwhater's" list of historical authorities. The pupil's opinion of the Master may be gathered from the following quotations:

"Mr. Winsor's admirable " Life of Columbus" left but one thing to be desired - a more exact sentence upon the criminal on trial in his honest and learned pages The truth is that Mr. Winsor notably spares Columbus, and puts into the picture touches which concede to the popular conception somewhat more than the severest regard for truth permits... It is more than just to recognize Columbus as " the conspicuous developer of a great world movement," and " the embodiment of the ripened aspirations of his time." This honor belongs elsewhere. Columbus embodied only a corrupt and degraded form of the aspirations which were the glory of the age of discovery, and the world-movement was conspicuously marred, damaged and demoralized by the hand which he put upon it." "Columbus... was a curse to America rather than a benefactor, and a miserable fraud, a wretched failure as a discoverer." ..." Of genius for any high task, Columbus had none. The most sadly definable thing in him was the air not of authority, but of pretension, which savored more of the crank than the scientist, and for great parts of his conduct and utterances suggests a mind almost or quite off its balance. The movement in hand when he " paced his decks" would have ended far better if he had gone down with his "crazy little ships," and his crazy scheme of westward greed, which was a seed of sin and shame without a parallel, through more than three centuries of Spanish lust for gain from the new world."

I shall never tell any one, but deep down in my soul, I believe Justin Winsor is the confectioner of every word I have quoted, and indeed of every word of the article in "Self Culture." But if I am in error, Heaven help our dear mother-tongue! a second conspicuous "marrer," damager and demoralizer, has put his hand upon that tongue, and he will wring, twist, wrench and maul it, unfeelingly and interminably, unless the "world-movement" should, considerately, throw him " almost or quite off the world balance," - a consummation devoutly to be wished for!

Were I to omit the closing paragraph of the unknown, photographic " developer " of the Magazine of Knowledge, my grateful duty would not be fulfilled. Here it is:

"Columbus, in fact, took on a citizenship which was the worst in Europe, and accepted the most evil fates under the banner of Spain. He did this in a kinship of his own spirit to the Spanish spirit. Of fairly large natural intelligence and quick perception, he yet had emotion rather than intellect, imagination rather than judgment and knowledge, and enthusiasms, flaming and wandering, rather than convictions well based and principles firmly held. A confident and determined visionary, indefinitely incapable of self-deception and delusion, of pious fraud and pious falsehood, he found his place with Spain at her worst, and achieved a mission, perhaps the worst for failure in success and shame amid glory, in all human history."

The " student-reader's " humor has been satisfied by these quotations. Therefore we may now seriously consider the historical estimate of Columbus, presented to the Home University League by the leaders of the " Whichwhat " school.

To form a thorough, and an independent estimate of the Discover of America, one must read studiously all the letters of Columbus, the diaries of his voyages, the grants conceded him by Isabella and Ferdinand, the grants conceded by the Papacy, the letters of the Sovereigns to him and to their agents, and the testimony adduced at the several trials in which his heirs were involved. These documents are the first in importance. After them, as contemporary sources, one must become familiar with the works of Andres Bernaldez, Peter Martyr, Oviedo, Las Casas, and the Historic referred to Fernando the son of Columbus. No complete and authentic English translation of these documents or works has been published. They must be consulted in the original Spanish, Italian or Latin.

Basing their conclusions on these documents and books, many learned men have discussed the character, the acquirements and the deeds of Columbus; and no conscientious student would presume to write about The Discoverer, without first perusing the volumes of Herrera, Mufioz, Navarrete, Von Humboldt, Irving, Major, De Lorgues, and Harrisse. The labor such a course of reading compels, must preclude even Home University Leaguers from forming a grounded, independent judgment on Columbus; and consequently the majority of men must be dependent on some writer who has fairly and thoroughly controlled all the sources, and all the critical studies of the sources; or on some writer, or talker, who has unfairly, unintelligently, uncritically, ignorantly scribbled or gabbled, when silence was most becoming.

In a list of educated, critical, intelligent and fair-minded students of Columbus, no self-respecting writer would place the name of Parkhurst, Adams, or Winsor. Do we mean to imply that they are not educated, fair-minded, intelligent or critical? Would we place them among the ignorant scribblers and gabblers? To these not improper questions, we prefer that our readers should answer, when they have estimated the testimony we shall here present, and the standing of our witnesses.

Mr. Prescott, though not a Roman Catholic, has been recognized as a historian of merit, who was sometimes truthful, and seldom visionary. From Vol. III., p. 244, of the "History of Ferdinand and Isabella." I quote Mr. Prescott's "historical estimate" of Columbus:

"Whatever were the defects of his mental constitution, the finger of the historian will find it difficult to point to a single blemish in his moral character. His correspondence breathes the sentiment of devoted loyalty to his sovereigns. His conduct habitually displayed the utmost solicitude for the interests of his followers. He expended his last maravedi in restoring his unfortunate crew to their native land. His dealings were regulated by the nicest principles of honor and justice. His last communication to the sovereigns from the Indies remonstrates against the use of violent measures in order to extract gold from the natives, as a thing equally scandalous and impolitic. The grand object to which he dedicated himself seemed to expand his whole soul, and raised it above the petty shifts and artifices, by which great ends are sometimes sought to be compassed. There are some men, in whom rare virtues have been closely allied, if not to positive vice, to degrading weakness. Columbus's character presented no such humiliating incongruity. Whether we contemplate it in its public or private relations, in all its features it wears the same noble aspect. It was in perfect harmony with the grandeur of his plans, and their results more stupendous than those which. Heaven has permitted any other mortal to achieve."1

Alexander von Humboldt was one of the most cultured men of this century. He had genius rather than talent. A sceptic and an infidel, if not an atheist, he had no love for the Catholic religion. His pursuits, as a naturalist and a geologist, interested him in The Discoverer of the New World. Not only did Von Humboldt familiarize himself with the documentary history of Columbus, but he sailed over the great Italian's course, and also trod in his footsteps. Thrice he published the results of his studies on the life and achievements of the Discoverer: in the " Essai politique sur l'isle de Cuba1 (Paris, 1826), in the "Examen critique de l'histoire de la Geographie du Nouveau Continent" (Paris, 1836); and in "Cosmos" (London, 1S48).

"Columbus is distinguished for his deep and earnest sentiment of religion," says Von Humboldt.' He was " endowed with a high intelligence, and with an invincible courage in adversity." He was eloquent, poetical; and the extent of his reading is astonishing. "What characterizes Columbus is the penetration and the extreme delicacy with which he seizes the phenomena of the exterior world. He is just as remarkable an observer of nature, as he is remarkable as an intrepid 'mariner."3.... "Columbus does not confine himself to gathering isolated facts; he combines them, he seeks their mutual relations, sometimes he rises boldly to the discovery of the general rules that govern the physical world. This tendency to generalize facts and observations is all the more worthy of attention, because, before the end of the 15th century, I might almost say, before Father Acosta, we see no other attempt at it."' Navigators, astronomers, geologists, geographers, commerce,

1 History of the reign of Ferdinand and Isabella, Boston, 1838; Vol. III., pp. 244-245 * Cosmos, Vol. II., p. 420. * Examen critique, Vol. III., p. 9. * Examen critique, Vol. III., p. 20.

"all the physical sciences," and philology, are indebted to Columbus, Von Humboldt says and proves1 by references to the writings and the doings of the Discoverer of the New World. Columbus " dominates his century," the learned German scientist declares: "The majesty of the great memories seems to be concentrated on the name of Christopher Columbus. It is the originality of his vast conception, the breadth and fecundity of his genius, the courage opposed to long misfortunes which have raised the Admiral above all his contemporaries." 1

What Columbus did for human science, Von Humboldt knew, and told. "He discovered a magnetic line without variation, and this discovery marks a memorable epoch in nautical astronomy.' The actual equatorial current, the movement of waters between the tropics, was first described by Columbus.'.... But not only had the Admiral the merit of finding the line without variation in the Atlantic, he remarked thereon ingeniously that the magnetic variation could be used, within certain limits, to determine the longitude of the vessel.*.. ..He discovered also the influence of longitude on the distribution of heat, following the same parallel." .... Columbus served the human race by offering it at the one time so many objects for reflection; he enlarged the mass of ideas; through him human thought progressed.'"

Mr. Clements R. Markham, like Von Humboldt, an educated, studious, observing traveller, and a writer of merit, holds, as he deserves to hold, a high place among living scientific men; and to-day, Mr. Markham honors the honorable office of President of the " Royal Geographical Society." He has written a short " Life of Christopher Columbus," which is, without exception, the fairest and the most instructive " Life " of the Discoverer, published in the English language." What estimate has Mr. Markham formed of the character and the achievements of the man who is described, by the " Whichwhater " of the " Self-Culturist," as a " criminal"1

"Columbus," Mr. Markham writes, "had a very active and imaginative brain, the bright thoughts following each other in

1 Examen critique, p. 155. * Examen critique, Vol. V., p. 177. Cosmos, Vol. II., p. 657. * Cosmos, Vol. II., p. 662. * Examen critique. Vol. III., p. 38. "Examen critique, Vol. III., p. 99. 'Examen critique, Vol. III., p. 153. "London, George Philip & Son, 1892.

rapid succession, and his enthusiastic and impressionable nature produced visions and day-dreams which often impressed him with all the force of reality. Like Joan of Arc, and other gifted beings who have been the instruments to work out great events, Columbus heard voices, which had the practical effect of rousing him from despondency and bracing him to his work. He has recorded two occasions on which this happened, but probably " the voices" made themselves heard at other critical turning points of his life. Yet there was no danger of his becoming a mere visionary. His clear, penetrating intellect saved him from that; and it was this unrivalled power, combined with a brilliant imagination, which constituted his genius. He prepared himself for his great work by long study, by the acquisition of vast experience, and by a minute knowledge of every detail of his profession. But this would not have sufficed. He added to these qualifications a master mind endowed with reasoning powers of a high order; and an ingenious, almost subtle, way of seizing upon and utilizing every point which had a relation to the subject he was considering. His forecasts amount to prevision. Assuredly the discovery of the New World was no accident. "His genius and lofty enthusiasm, his ardent and justified previsions, mark the Admiral as one of the lights of the human race."'

"It was, however, as a navigator that the genius of Columbus found the most suitable field for its display. He was a consummate seaman, and without any equal in that age as a pilot and a navigator; while his sense of duty and responsibility gave rise to a watchfulness which was unceasing and untiring. His knowledge of cosmography, of all needful calculations, and of the manipulation of every known instrument was profound: but he showed even greater force in his forecasts of weather, in his reasoning on the effects of winds and currents, and in the marvellous accuracy of his landfalls, even when approaching an unknown coast... .His genius was a gift which is only produced once in an age. But his reasoning power, carefully trained and' cultivated, his diligence as a student, his habits of observation, and

1 Life of Columbus, by Clements R. Markham. C. B., pp. 296, 297. The sentence quoted by Mr. Markham. at the close, is a sentence lie takes from Col. Yule's admirable work on : " Marco Polo."

the regularity of his work, especially in writing up a journal and taking observations, are qualities which every seaman might usefully study and imitate. He has been accused of carelessness and inaccuracy in his statements: but every instance that has been put forward can be shown to be consistent with accuracy. The blunders were not those of the Admiral, but of his crities. Considering the circumstances under which many of his letters were written, his careful accuracy of statement is remarkable. It is another proof of a mind long trained to orderly and methodical habits He was amiable and of a most affectionate disposition, and made many and lasting friendships in all ranks of life.. .We reverence and admire his genius, we applaud his large-hearted magnanimity, we urge the study of his life on all seamen as a useful example, but his friendships and the warmth of his affections are the qualities which appeal most to our regard. Columbus was a man to reverence, but he was still more a man to love."

"The work of few men in the world's history has had such a lasting influence on the welfare of the human race as that of Columbus. It created a complete revolution in the thoughts and ideas of the age. It was a landmark and a beacon. It divided the old and the new order of things, and it threw a bright light over the future. In ten years he discovered the way across the Atlantic, he explored the Gulf stream and the regions of the trades, of the westerlies and the calms; he discovered the Bahamas and the West Indies; he inspired the work of Cabot and Cortereal; and he or his pupils discovered the coasts of the new continent from 8degrees South of the equator to the Gulf of Honduras. But the greatest achievement was the first voyage across the ocean. It broke the spell and opened a new era. All else he did, and all that was done after his death for the next fifty years, followed as a natural consequence. The originator and supreme leader of all, was Christopher Columbus."'

To these "estimates " collected from American, German and English authorities, I shall add a few sentences written by Prof. John Fiske in the second volume of his work on: The Discovery of America1 The Discovery of America may be regarded in one

Life of Columbus, C. R. Markham. pp. 2ox), 300, 301. i Page 553.

sense as a unique event, but it must likewise be regarded as a long and multifarious process. The unique event was the crossing of the sea of Darkness in 1492. It established a true and permanent contact between the eastern and western halves of our planet, and brought together the two streams of human life that had flowed in separate channels ever since the Glacial period. No ingenuity of argument can take from Columbus the glory of an achievement which has, and can have, no parallel in the whole career of mankind.1

Before again addressing the "Home University League," it may be well to state that I do not know what religion Mr. Markham professes, though I am certain he is not a Catholic. As for the good-humored Mr. Fiske, I fear that, for a second, but no longer, he would be angry with any one who charged him with having a " denominational " religion. He is a " Fiskian" philosopher. Any educated gentleman can be truthful, if he will; and there is no reason why the most predestinated and self-cultured Calvinist should not be a liar.

Comparing the standing of the competent scholars whom I have called as witnesses to the character, ability, and deeds of Columbus, with the want of standing of Messrs. Parkhurst, Adams, Winsor, and the anonymous composer of the vile and ignorant article in "Self Culture," I know that the intelligent and honest Home Leaguers will thank me for warning them to guard their magazine against the conscienceless " historical dynamiter " who has secreted himself in the League's " midst." The man or men, who, to-day, in the face of the scholarship of five centuries, would seek to mislead any portion of American youth, by representing Columbus as a life-long and practised liar, greedy for gold, a bigot, a visionary, a criminal, a curse to America, a miserable fraud, a crank, deficient in intellect, judgment, and knowledge, a pious fraud, the worst failure and the greatest shame in all human history,1such man or men, because of consummate ignorance, or phenomenal malice, deserve the reprobation of every lover of truth, of learning, of grand ideals and grand actions. More than wife-beaters, they are worthy of the whipping-post. They poison the springs of truth; they destroy honorable reputations; they sow the seed of falsehood, thus endangering the very life of society. Hated of God, the knowing falsifier should be pursued and punished by men. The ignorant falsifier, if less guilty, is no less dangerous, and should be promptly exposed.

The managers of " Self Culture " are evidently committed to the " Whichwhat " school of defamation; for, besides the article I have discussed, they print, in the Magazine of Knowledge, " Readings in American History," whose purport is further to mislead the members of the Home University League concerning Columbus, and at the same time to advertise the " Encyclopaedia Britannica;" a work in which, apparently, the publishers of " Self Culture " are not unselfishly interested. Woe! Woe! to the University whose corner-stone is an encyclopaedia, and whose dome is topped by the illuminated statue of Justin Winsor enlightening Chicago.

Certain false charges made in the Winsoresque estimate of Columbus, I shall repel in a second article. They refer to his relations with Dona Beatrix, and to his dealings with the Indians. Again and again and again these charges have been answered, and therefore I can say nothing new; but, lest the members of the H. U. L. may not find an answer in the E. B., I may serve them by repeating an old story. Loving truth and my mother-tongue as ardently as the "self-culturedest" self-culturer, I shall spare no effort to preserve the Magazine of Knowledge from the incendiary 1Whichwhaters."

Columbus Among Liars


John A. Mooney.

With a pen dripping honied vocables, an unknown artist has attributed to an unflinching pulpitworker the following graceful and gracious attempt to express an uncultured untruth: "Columbus was the first to establish slavery in America, which cursed the new country for centuries." And not to be surpassed by a mere pulpit-worker, the artist composed, for the delectation of students, a dulcet sentence, thus worded: "The record of the terms without which Columbus refused to sail is a monumental exposure of his greed, and that of the dealings by which he strove to effect his purpose reveals a lust of the flesh and of base desire at once brutal and shameless." Were the pupils in the schools of Chicago compelled, daily, to turn these two "brutal and shameless " sentences into English, there is no doubt in my mind that Young America would curse this country during all the ages; and that, even the old folk, repressing, for a time, all lusts of the flesh and base desires, would laugh "to kill" at the monumental exposure of the self-culture of the pulpit-worker and the magazine worker.

The end is not yet. "There is no reason whatever,"the artist tunefully intones," for imagining that we could see Columbus more favorably if we had more light. There is but too much light for those that have eyes to see, and in the not yet translated parts of Las Casas there is enough more to put a brand of eternal infamy on the Italian adventurer who enslaved and slaughtered the natives of the islands discovered by him as recklessly, and exterminated them in vast numbers as ruthlessly, as if they had been so many field vermin."

O awfully, cruelly funny "Whichwhater!" There shall be a light in our window for thee; just enough for a blind man to see. But what should one do with that Italian adventurer who discovered islands as recklessly as if they had been so many field vermin? Put a brand of eternal infamy on him with too much and enough more light! Nay; the penalty must fit the crime. Let him be interned with "the not yet translated parts of Las Casas," in the Winsorian Hospital for Enslaved and Slaughtered English Grammars! In a letter written in 1500 to Dona Juana de la Torre, the Discoverer of the New World used the following words: "I have reached a point where even the vilest seek to outrage me ".... "If I had stolen the Indies and given them to the Moors, it would be impossible to show more hatred to me, in Spain." With this quotation I dismiss the " Whichwhaters." Their hatred will avail no more than Spanish hatred availed. But their vile language, their outrages on our mother-tongue, are so shameful, that I feel bound once more to warn all self-culturing youths and maidens to keep a watchful eye on the Magazine of Knowledge. Eternal vigilance is the price of good English. The name of the great Dominican, Las Casas, has been freely used by scribblers who knew little about him. A mere mention of the titles of his works will expose the cheap pretension of the one who referred to " the not yet translated parts of Las Casas." Besides the: De unico modo vocationis, he published a Spanish translation of the Brief: Enntes docete omnes getites, issued by Pope Paul III., on May 29th, 1537; and this translation was followed by the: Brevissima relacion de la destruycion de las lndias, commonly known as: "The Destruction of the Indies." Pursuing a single aim, Las Casas multiplied treatises. Of these a number exist only in manuscript. Those printed during his lifetime, in the original Spanish or Latin, or published after his death, in traitorous French translations, are more than a few; as the following titles exhibit: "Entre los Remedies "; "Tratado comprobatorio del Imperio Soberano'; the "Thirty Propositions", otherwise presented as the " Twenty Reasons "; the " Quaeslio de imperatoria vel regia potestate "; the treatise on the " Liberty of the Indians "; the " Controversy with Dr. dc Sepulveda "; the "Letter to Don B. Carranza de Miranda"; and the " Consultation on the Affairs of Peru." The best known, though not the most learned work of Las Casas, is the: " Historia de las lndias' printed for the first time, in 1875. I have not heard of anv English translation of the Historia, though I have read that some of his works have been translated into English. There is an Italian as well as a French version of the Brevissima relacion. The Italian version is reliable. Several of the treatises have been paraphrased, most liberally, by Llorente,' who cooked texts always with a freedom allowable only to a Spanish chef when concocting an Olla Podrida.

Translating "parts" of Las Casas, we can compare his estimate of Columbus, with the estimate formed by Von Humboldt. Prescott, Markham and Fiske. "He was a man with a great valiant soul,"'thus Las Casas wrote,"" of high thought, and from what can be deduced from his life and deeds and from his writings and conversation, naturally inclined to attempt illustrious and noble actions and deeds; patient and long-suffering, a pardoner of injuries, and one who desired no other thing, as he himself said, than that those who injured him should acknowledge their errors, and that delinquents should confess their offenses; most constant and adorned with longanimity in the hardships and adversities that ever befell him, the which were incredible and infinite, maintaining always a great confidence in Divine Providence; and truly, from what I myself have heard, both from my own father who was with him when he returned to colonize the island of Hispaniola in 1493, and from other persons who accompanied him and served him, he had and always preserved affectionate fidelity and devotion to the Sovereigns."

From this single quotation, the ignorance or the malice of those who use the name of Las Casas in support of their falsehoods, will be apparent. The " Great Apostle of the Indies " ' never hesitated to use a strong word in the right place. To their face, he compared men high in power with one who is known to all Christians as the father of lies. And were Las Casas alive to-day, and writing here, I am not certain that, moved by a just indignation, he would have spared the calumniators of Columbus a comparison that I deem superfluous.

1 Euvres de Don Barthelemi de las Casas. par J. A. Llorente. Paris, 1822. 2 vols. 9 Historia de las Indias, in the: Coleccion de documentos ineditos para la Historia de Espana, Madrid, 1875, vol. I xii. p. 45. 3 Thus Sir Arthur Helps calls Las Casas.

However, we shall not confine ourselves to one quotation. Passing over a tribute to the " grand memory " and the " extraordinary faculty of judgment " with which God had endowed the Discoverer of the New World; and omitting the testimony of Las Casas to the fact that Columbus was "a man fearing God, and temperate," and that " his constancy and the generosity of his soul were no less remarkable than his knowledge," I beg my readers to reflect on the following passage:' "And so I (Bartholomew Las Casas) believe that Christopher Columbus was moved principally for God, and for spiritual and eternal treasures, and for the salvation of the predestined." Perhaps there are unflinching pulpit-workers, student-librarians, and uncultured speechmakers who had not read the " now translated parts " of Las Casas. Dare they say that Columbus was greedy for gold alone; or, that he was a criminal? If he were a mere adventurous criminal, what was Las Casas? Was he also a criminal? In the: Case Against Columbus, there is a criminal somewhere; and if the criminal be neither Columbus nor Las Casas, I think we shall catch him red-handed.

"All the days of his life "I am translating another passage from Las Casas" were full of perils, surprises, hardships, such as were never before heard of, bitter sorrows, persecutions, afflictions, and one continued martyrdom."* A martyr criminal! and the first recorded in history. The criminal,all the days of whose life were full of hardships, such as were never before heard of; the criminal who,suffering always the bitter sorrows, persecutions, and afflictions that only a great, valiant soul could have borne, was moved to seek a new world, principally for God, and for spiritual and eternal treasures, and for the salvation of souls,is a criminal unique in the experience of mankind.

1 Coleccion, vol. lxii., p. 248. * Coleccion, vol. lxii., p. 249. 'It is Llorente who thus qualifies Las Casas.

What estimate should we form of the life and the deeds of such a"criminal" The " martyr of charity "' shall answer: "To extol and manifest two things, I (Bartholomew Las Casas) have many times, when meditating on this matter, desired that I might have new grace and aid from God, and the pen of Tullius Cicero with his eloquence; the first of these things is the ineffable service that Christopher Columbus rendered to God, and the universal benefits he conferred oa the whole world, especially on Christendom, and, among others, more particularly on the Castilians, if we recognize the gifts of God, with which he was endowed, and his risks and hardships, and the industry, skill and valor, which he abundantly displayed in the discovery of this orb."' ... "It would seem that, before the ages, God conceded to this man the keys of that most fearful sea, and desired that no other should open its mysterious locks; that to him we owe all those harbors, within, that have followed since (he opened the locks), and whatever benefits of any sort shall follow from this day forward until the end of the world."'

Lengthily does Las Casas enumerate the manifold benefits conferred on mankind and on religion by Christopher Columbus; and, deeply affected, as all men of thought and feeling have been affected, by the remembrance of the immortal deeds of Columbus, the great Dominican thus concludes: "Of all these illustrious and incomparable benefits, and of other innumerable benefits that each day strike our eyes, .. . the second cause, under God, and the first with respect to all the men of this world, was that most worthy man, the first discoverer of that most extensive and most famous New World, of which he alone worthily deserved to be the first Admiral.'"

To these enthusiastic eulogies of Columbus, we could add others no less hearty, written by the same hand in the: Historia de las Indias ; but from those I have quoted, one having eyes can see that no child of the father of lies can be in communion with the first priest ordained in the New World,Bartholomew Las Casas. The " criminal " of Winsor et al. is the Christian hero of Las Casas, and of all other educated and truthful men. A brand of eternal infamy, the fiery Dominican would have burned into the forehead of any one malicious enough to represent as a criminal, the most worthy man, who, with respect to all men, was the first cause of all the incomparable benefits that have accrued to humanity through the discovery of the marvellous New World,Christopher Columbus.

Relating the story of the occupation and colonization of the Indies, Las Casas did pass a severe judgment on many acts for which he held the Admiral responsible; but by no word did the honest and learned Dominican question the purity of the Admiral's intentions. The wisdom or the legality of these acts, Las Casas questions or denies; but nowhere does he cast a suspicion, however slight, on the motives that determined Columbus in his policy as a governor.

The position maintained by Las Casas was peculiar. He did not absolutely deny the right to make or hold slaves. The Law of Nations recognized such a right, and, as a jurist, he was bound to recognize the validity of that law. What he did deny was: that anybody, not excepting the Rulers of Spain, had a right to make slaves, contrary to the law of nations, or to hold slaves illicitly acquired. To this sound major proposition, he added a minor having this intent: The Indians enslaved in the New World were illicitly enslaved. Conceding this minor, his conclusion was logically consequent: Therefore all the Indian slaves should be set free. To prove his minor, Las Casas maintained that a good title to a slave could be acquired only by capture in a just war { bona guerra ) or by purchase or gift, the seller or donor having a good title; and to this new major he appended a new minor: No title, acquired through a just war, existed in the New World; and few, if any Indians, had been purchased, or received as a gift, from individuals who had a legal right to sell or give. This new minor, he supported by a declaration that the sole title the Spaniards had in the New World was the title conceded them by the Bull of Pope Alexander VI.; and that the sole right acquired under this Bull, was the right to preach the Gospel to the inhabitants of the New World. The occupation by Columbus was in the eyes of Las Casas, a forcible, unjustifiable occupation; the attempt to establish a form of government other than that existing among the natives, he denounced as an act of injustice; nay, more, he protested that, in attacking the Spaniards, and in killing them, anywhere and everywhere, the Indians were justified. On their side was right; the Spaniard was an unjust aggressor. So that,in the opinion of Las Casas, all acts performed by Columbus, or by his successors, excepting only such acts as were directed to the peaceable spreading of Christianity, were unjust, radically. The argument of Las Casas, I have summarized here. In several of his memorials and treatises, as well as in the Brevissima relatcion and in the Historia he stated the argument clearly, though it is in the controversy with De Sepulveda that he develops his thesis the more fully and closely.

If the student-librarians and their co-working pulpiteers will apply the principles and the reasoning of Las Casas to the occupation of our coasts by Puritan or Cavalier, and to the " civilizing" methods adopted by these models of sweet Christian charity, they will find material for volumes of illicit English and of righteous indignation. There is light enough in the "not yet translated parts of Las Casas " and in the written and unwritten history of the American colonies and of the United States, to "put a brand of infamy" on the slaughterers and exterminators of the American Indians who were not fortunate enough to come under the mild rule of Christopher Columbus, but who were so unfortunate as to fall into the hands of Englishmen and Dutchmen, whose purposes reveal not only "a lust of the flesh and base desire at once brutal and shameless," but also a contempt for right and for justice that only a Las Casas could fittingly expose and condemn.

Clearly, the conclusion of the jurist and theologian reached and purposely reached beyond Columbus. He was but the servant of the crown, and the policy he adopted was passed upon or initiated, by the kings Spain. They were responsible for the injustices that were radical. And this responsibility Las Casas charged them with, again and again. Indeed, on account of his iteration of royal responsibility, he was accused of disloyalty; a charge against which he skilfully defended himself.

Reading the Historia, by bits and scraps, one may fall upon a passage, which, wrested from the context, and presented unintclligently or dishonestly, would mislead. Everything Las Casas wrote, was written under the influence of his grand argument. Coming to details, each act of Columbus was measured by Las Casas according to the Law of Nations, and the canons of Catholic theology set forth in his works; and not only for every act, illicit under the law and the canons, did he condemn the Admiral, but also for all the consequences of these acts. This sweeping condemnation, Las Casas qualified, however, by excusing Columbus for performing these condemnable actions, On account of his good faith, sincerity, gentleness (dulzura) and benignity; or on account of his ignorance of law; or on account of the royal approbation of his acts. On the crown it is that Las Casas really places the responsibility, as he should do. A Council composed of jurists and theologians, decided all questions relating to the treatment of the Indians. To this Council all the politic acts of Columbus were submitted; and, with the Council, the Sovereigns passed upon those acts; as, advised by the Council, the Sovereigns frequently instructed their Admiral how they desired him to act. For whatever policy he adopted, the Council was finally responsible; and on the Council, Las Casas imposes the final responsibility.

Making the Council bear the burden of the policy followed by Columbus, Las Casas aimed one shaft at King Ferdinand, and another at Fonseca, the king's favorite; both of whom, as Las Casas testifies, were ever unfriendly to the noble Discoverer; and both of whom influenced the Council to serve ends personal to the king and to Fonseca. No policy formed by Columbus could have been permanently established, against the advice of the Council and the will of the Sovereigns.

Here it may be well to recall some facts that are seldom considered. On his first voyage, Columbus constructed Fort Navidad, and left in the fort, a garrison of forty-four men. Returning to Spain, he reached Palos on March 15th, 1493. A month had hardly passed when the Sovereigns organized the department of Indian affairs, with Fonseca as its head. From that day forward Columbus was subject to the control of this department as well as of the Sovereigns. Making a second voyage to the New World, the Admiral reached Navidad, on November 27th, 1493. Until April 24th, 1494, he remained on land, planning the new city of Isabella, stamping out the conspiracy of Bernal Diaz and exploring the island. Discovering and observing, amid perils and hardships, lie spent the following five months at sea. "Prostrate, insensible, delirious," ' "deprived of memory, sight and all his faculties,"3 he was carried onshore, at Isabella, on September 29th, 1494. During the succeeding five months, he lay there, helplessly ill. Recovering, he spent the next eleven months in defending the colony against disorderly Spaniards and warring Indians. On March 10th, 1496, he sailed once more for Spain. Two years and five months later, on August 31st, 1498, he returned to the New World, and entered the new city of San Domingo for the first time. Pacifying the country, contending with rebels, and successfully founding the colony on a basis of prosperity, Columbus, with his brother Bartholomew, surmounted many and rare difficulties, and bore hardships innumerable. On the 22d of August, 1500, Bobadilla appeared in the harbor of San Domingo, and the authority of Columbus ended forever. Seven years had passed since the first discovery; and, during these seven years, the Admiral had exercised authority for no more than three years and four months.

Reference has been made to the rebellion of Diaz, which was only the first of several traitorous attempts to nullify the authority of the Admiral and of the kings of Spain. And it is noteworthy that the favorites of royalty were frequently implicated in the conspiracies against tne representative of the crown. When in April, 1494, Columbus went in search of new lands, he appointed a commission or Junta, of five, to manage affairs during his absence. At least one member of this Junta proved a disturber; and the rebellious Margarite, a favorite of the king, found a supporter in Boil, another favorite. Convalescing after his long illness, the Admiral learned of the rising of Caonabo, a savage no less unreliable than the royal favorites. Roldan, Riquelme, Guevara, Mejica, in turn, threatened the very existence of the colony, and made the two latter years of his nominal governorship a " martyrdom." We have already noted the control exercised by the Sovereigns over the affairs of the Indies, from the day that they first knew of the existence of the Indies. Sixty years ago.
Von Humboldt
1 Life of Christopher Columbus, by C. R. Markham, p. 169.
J The Life and Voyages, Irving, Hudson edition, vol. i., p. 524.

wrote: "Official documents, and especially the large number of royal orders addressed to Columbus prove that the court occupied itself with the smallest details of the administration of the colony."' These documents and orders exist, and a biographer of Columbus, desirous of claiming thoroughness and honesty, must read every one of them. Having read them, he cannot honestly represent the Admiral as an autocrat, ruling according to his own pleasure. A document, made public by the Sovereigns on April 10th, 1495," shows how lightly they esteemed his powers, and how absolutely they assumed to control the Indies, regardless of any privileges or grants they had accorded him, under their hand and seal. In this document, they gave " general permission to native-born subjects to settle in the island of Hispaniola, and to go on private voyages of discovery and traffic to the New World." By this act, they attacked the authority nominally placed by them in the Admiral's hands, and invited the disorders which, later, he repressed at so great cost to himself. Again to advertise their royal control, they sent Juan Aguado to Hispaniola, in August, 1495. The spirit of the Sovereigns and of the department of the Indies can be fairly judged by Aguado's bearing when he arrived at Isabella, in October of the same year. "He assumed," says Washington Irving, "a tone of authority, as though the reins of government had been transferred into his hands. He interfered in public affairs; ordered various persons to be arrested; called to account the officers employed by the Admiral, and paid no respect to Don Bartholomew Columbus, who remained in command during the absence of his brother."" To defend himself against the calculated ill-will, and against the calumnies of this agent of the Sovereigns,the Admiral was obliged to return to Spain, in March, 1496. Two years and five months he was detained there, by the machinations of Fonseca and the neglect of the crown. When he embraced his brother once more, in the new city of San Domingo, it was " with grief and disappointment that he learned of the mutiny of the
1 Examen critique, vol. iii., p. 262.
4 See Navarrete,Coleccion de los viagesy descubrimientos; vol.ii., pp. 165-168.
3 Irving, vol. ii., pp. 82, 83.

miscreant, Francisco Roldan, whom he had raised from the dust." Roldan, Riquelme, Guevara, Mejica might well have charged Ferdinand and Fonseca with having encouraged rebellion, by their own repeated attacks on the Admiral's authority. When he had compromised with Roldan, and had reduced the others to obedience, the Sovereigns practically approved all the treacheries and rebellions that Columbus had mastered. The chains of Bobadilla were the sole reward of the Admiral's affectionate loyalty, valor, high judgment, prudence and longanimity.

From these records, it is as clear as the day that, before Columbus exercised a single act of authority in the New World, and indeed before a community existed there, the Sovereigns assumed the direction of Indian affairs; and that, henceforward, they supervised the smallest details of his administration, acting, commonly, without consulting with him, and often ordering affairs of their own motion; and it is equally clear that from the destruction of Fort Navidad until the disgraceful day on which he was put into irons,beset continually with trials, caused more than all by Spanish miscreants who hated him because of his ability and virtue, the crown, instead of supporting him, offered an example which naturally encouraged ambitious and greedy men to despise the mean and insecure authority that Columbus was permitted to exercise.

Now, I may fairly ask, is there any sensible person, weighing the facts here presented, who will believe that Christopher Columbus could have introduced slavery into the New World? The answer is plain: He could not have introduced slavery, during the three years and four months of his administration, without the consent or connivance of the Sovereigns; and, had he introduced slavery, the crown would be responsible, and not Columbus, Does Las Casas charge Columbus with introducing slavery into the New World? He does not so charge him; nor could he, for the simple reason that, by no free act did Columbus introduce or endeavor to introduce slavery into the New World.

The economic systems adopted by the Admiral are succinctly stated by Las Casas in the " Eleventh Reason" of the "Remedies." I quote his words: "The first Admiral of the Indies, who discovered the New World, believing that he followed the will of the kings, when he was at the island of Hispaniola in the beginning, made tributaries of the Indians, imposing on each of those living in the neighborhood of the mines to fill a hawk's bell with gold; and on those who were far away from the mines he laid a tax of a certain quantity of cotton and of such other things as they could give. Afterwards some tyrants among the Spaniards, who were with him, separated from him and revolted against his authority, and were the cause of his suffering great hardships and afflictions; and they possessed themselves of the Indians in a province of the island (of Hispaniola) called Xaragua, a rich province, and very populous, and commenced to make use of the Indians very unjustly; and after having come to an agreement, he permitted the Spaniards to retain some settlements (of Indians), and to use their labor and so to till farms for themselves."'

The " Spanish tyrants " to whom Las Casas alludes were the turbulent followers of Francisco Roldan, who in the year 1497, led a revolt against Bartholomew Columbus, during the Admiral's absence in Spain. In the Historia delas Indias, Las Casas narrates all the evil doings of this " miscreant," who, persecuting the Indians on the one hand, and, on the other, exciting them to destroy the royal colony, maintained an independent government until the arrival of Columbus at San Domingo, on August 30th, 1498.'

The terrible dangers that threatened the colony at this time are forcibly narrated by Las Casas. Columbus saw but one way out of them: negotiation with Roldan, and an appeal to the Sovereigns. Step by step, Roldan, who knew his strength and the Admiral's weakness, forced concession after concession. Hoping to get Roldan and his horde out of the island, for at first they promised to return to.Spain, Columbus granted them a slave each, of those whom they had already enslaved. Having gained this concession, Roldan refused to return to Spain, and demanded a grant of lands for himself and followers, and the use of the services of the Indians to cultivate the lands. This demand was also granted. To these terms compelled by "the serpent," Roldan, Las Casas alluded in the passage quoted from the " Remedies." Let us hear

1 Remedios, edition of 1552.
'Washington Irving's account of this rebellion, based as the account is on that of Las Casas, is full, trustworthy, and instructive: vol. ii., pp. 109-265.

what he says on the subject in the " Historia de las Indias." "Certainly, the ambition and bad conduct of this miserable Roldan are manifest, and the extreme necessity in which the Admiral found himself, and how he signed the concession against his will."' Nay more, the Dominican Patron of the Indians relates, what we know to be a fact, that Columbus promptly, and more than once, advised the Sovereigns of each one of his concessions and of all the circumstances; and that he protested to them that: "what he had signed was against his will, and was done under the advice of the principal persons (in the colony) who desiderated the advantage of their Highnesses, because they saw the danger there was of tie island's being ruined for either Indians or Christians, if these (rebels) did not leave the country, or did not submit, and if that shameless fire which daily increased was not confounded with shame."'

Nor does Las Casas rest here. He maintains that not one of the concessions made by Columbus, was granted "proprio motu" and of his own will. "The extreme necessity in which he found himself constrained him to sign the concessions," Las Casas writes; "wherefore they were null and void." When Columbus advised the Sovereigns of Roldan's acts and of his own, he also specified the neglect of the crown in not having provided the colony with a jurist. One experienced in the law should have been sent from Spain, " because the people on the island were unruly, and knew the Admiral dare not restrain them, on account of the unjust accusations they had made against him in Castille; accusations that were believed." "The concession made to Roldan," the learned Dominican adds, "was nihil, because, according to Jurists, to give, transfer, or prorogate jurisdiction, pure and totally free consent is required; and Columbus, under the circumstances, was deprived of free consent." *

Prudence, respect for law, acknowledgment of the crown's authority, and a manly independence, were displayed by Columbus in his letters to the Sovereigns concerning Roldan. Not content with asking them to supply a notable defect, by appointing a jurist

1 Coleccion, vol. lxiii., p. 365. * Coleccion, vol. lxiii., p. 360.
* Coleccion, vol. lxiii., pp. 366-368.

to give force to law, he also requested that two "virtuous persons" should be named as official councillors of the colony. Nor did he hesitate to reproach the crown for having weakened his authority. Treating him openly as a governor, named by the crown, should not have been treated, the crown invited disorder. In answer to his protestand requests, did the Sovereigns repudiate the void agreement forced from the Admiral by Roldan? No! Fonseca supported the rebel. Did they create a department of justice and select virtuous councillors to assist their nominal governor? No. At the mercy of the rebels, he remained. The crown preferred to retain absolute power in its own hands. Bobadilla answered the protests and requests of the Discoverer of the New World.

By the forced compromise with Roldan, or by the methods thereafter adopted to give stability to the colony, did Columbus introduce a system of Indian slavery into the New World? He did not; nor has any intelligent and honest writer charged him with introducing such a system. Indeed, no one who can read, except a reader-liar, could make such a charge against him. Sir Arthur Helps evidenced an unselfish and intelligent interest in the welfare of slaves long before the " New England conscience" was generally awakened to the inhumanity of the "forefathers" whose "lust of the flesh " could be gratified only by the exchange of "rum" for "niggers." In the "Conquerors of the New World,"1 Mr. Helps truthfully relates the facts: "Columbus apportioned to any Spaniard, whom he thought fit, such and such lands, to be worked by such a Cacique and his people a very different procedure to giving men a feudal system as Munoz justly calls it, and not a system of slavery. Open Washington Irving's "Life and Voyages of Columbus," and read this passage:' "He made an arrangement, also, by which the Caciques in their vicinity instead of paying tribute, should furnish parties of their subjects, free Indians, to assist the colonists in the cultivation of their lands: a kind of feudal service, which was the origin of the repartimientos, or distributions of free Indians among th

Meditations on the Mysteries of the Rosary

from the From French of Father Monsabre, O.P.
translated by Very Reverend Stephen Byrne, O.P.



JESUS, having been taken from the cross, is placed in a new sepulchre in which His flesh, fearfully mangled by the ordeal through which it had passed, reposed for a little while. Its rest was not the deep sleep which weighs down human beings after they breathe their last sigh, and from which only the trumpet of the angel will awaken them ; it is a tranquil slumber from which the voice of God will soon arouse Him.

Two passions — hatred and fear — watch round His tomb. It is covered with a huge stone and secured by the seal of the synagogue. The soldiers are on guard to prevent any secret approach. It is confidently believed that these precautions will stifle for ever in the tomb the voice of Him who had said of His body : "Destroy this temple, and in three days I will build it up again (John ii. 19). How ridiculous and foolish men make themselves when they attempt to run counter to the designs of God or to give the lie to His promises ! On the morning of the third day there is an earthquake ; an angel descends and rolls away the stone ; and the flesh of Jesus, receiving Life again by the divine power, springs forth, glorious and immortal, from the arms of Death.

Let us adore our risen Saviour! No longer is He a prisoner whom the soldiers of the synagogue and the pretorium drag about from one tribunal to another ; no longer is He the man forsaken by His Father and His friends, and complaining most touchingly of the rigors of divine justice ; no more is He the condemned man whom all insult who dare address Him ; no longer is he the man covered with wounds and become like a leper whose aspect is fearful to look upon ; nor is He any more the dead body which His afflicted Mother enshrouded with reverent hands and saw laid in a sepulchre. Now He is free, joyous, triumphant, radiant, immortal. Let us, with the Psalmist, sing to the Lord : " Thou hast broken my bonds, and I will offer to Thee a sacrifice of praise." Thou hast not forgotten the Just One in His tomb, "nor hast Thou allowed Thy Holy One to see corruption." With St. Paul we will cry out : " O death ! where is thy victory ? O death ! where is thy sting?" (1 Cor. xv.) "Christ rising from the dead, dieth now no more, death shall have no more dominion over Him ; for in that He liveth, He liveth to God" (Rom. vi.) Let us sing these canticles of joy and then turn our thoughts upon ourselves.

This great mystery includes for us a lesson, a figure, and a promise.

The ineffable joy and glory of the Resurrection have been purchased at the price of most horrible sufferings. It was inevitable. It is our Saviour Himself who tells it to those who, like the disciples of Emmaus, might be scandalized or weakened on account of His Passion : " Ought not Christ to have suffered these things, and so to have entered into His glory ? " (Luke xxiv.) Now, the road of soldiers must be the same as that travelled by their leader. Enlisted under the banner of Jesus Christ, we cannot hope to attain the incorruptible glory and unalloyed happiness, promised by Almighty God, through the broad pathway of pleasure and enjoyment, which is unhappily too much frequented. Jesus did not take that road. It was the rough way of sorrow and pain, in which we can easily trace His bloody foot- steps, that conducted Him to eternal honors. It was the cross He bore and on which He died that opened the gates of heaven, barred and bolted against the luxury of worldlings. The motto of every Christian ought to be : "Let me suffer, O Lord ! in this life, that I may live eternally in the next."

This is the lesson of the Resurrection.

There is in it also a symbol or figure. The mystery of the Resurrection is a lively figure of the spiritual transformation which ought to take place in each of us. Sin is death. It is the tomb in which the captive soul sleeps a fatal sleep. The enemy takes all manner of precautions to prevent its awakening. Yet he cannot prevent the voice of God from reaching even this sepulchre of the sinful soul. " Arise," says that voice, " thou who sleepest ; arise from the dead. Christ will enlighten thee " (Ephes. v.) At the first sound of that voice let us rise from sin. We may never hear it more. Death long continued will breed corruption.

But how will I rise ? How break the cords that tie me down ? How roll away the heavy stone that is laid over me ? How break the inveterate habits and the shameful laxity of the will, which is weakened so much by its many consents to sin ? Courage, Christian ! In the figure just given there is a promise. For us Christ died, and " for our justification He rose again." The divine virtue of His glorified humanity will one day bring together the scattered dust of our bodies, and will make our flesh, dissolved in death, live again eternally incorrupt ; but at present He addresses Himself to the soul especially to draw it from sin to justice, and to give it strength to " walk in the pathway of a blessed newness of life."

I count on Thee, O my adorable Master ! Have pity on me ! I am dead, or at least I feel myself dying day by day ; for it is not life that languishes in tepidity. In virtue of Thy blessed Resurrection enable me to rise from the tomb of my failings. Create, O Lord ! a new spirit within me, so that, penetrated with Thy light, disengaged from the influences of the flesh, active and alert in good works, and bent upon the perfection of my life, I may live henceforth only for Thee, as Thou livest only for God.


LET us go to Mount Olivet. Thither Jesus brings His disciples for the last time. He recalls to their minds their divine mission, confirms the powers conferred upon them, again promises the Holy Spirit, gives them His blessing, bids them adieu, and rises towards heaven. The hearts of the apostles, divided between grief and wonder, follow with their eyes their adorable Master, who is leaving them, and whom they will never see again on earth. A bright cloud intercepts their view of the triumphant humanity of their Saviour, but they continue to look towards the heavens whither He had ascended. Now they understand all ; and their hearts, so recently gross and carnal, break all earthly chains.

Let us with them raise our hearts to heaven. Sursum corda ! If Jesus leaves us He does not forget us, nor does He abandon us to our exile without hope. His going is not to put an immense distance between His glory and our misery ; it is to prepare a place for us : " I go to prepare a place for you " (John xiv. 2). This is His promise ; can we suppose He will not keep it?

O Jesus, our only love! we have need of hearing this good word fall from Thy adorable lips to console us in Thy absence. Thou goest to prepare a place for us; is this world, therefore, not our most suitable home? Ah ! no. It is too full of troubles to give that joy to the heart to which it aspires; it is too narrow to satiate the immensity of our desires ; it is too uncertain to give us any assurance of eternal possession, the idea of which is inseparable from all our dreams of happiness. The eternal life of God, His infinite perfections, the perfect love of God, the boundless space which His immensity fills — this is the "length and breadth and depth" of which St. Paul speaks; this is the place to which we should direct our course and in which we should anchor our bark of life, the place which Jesus went to prepare for us.

He is there indeed. It is our humanity that triumphs in his person and sits at the right hand of God. Even if we were not called to a participation in His glory and beatitude we ought to be anxious to know where it is and to register His victory in our human records. If he belongs to God He belongs to us also; if He is of the divine substance He is also of our flesh and blood, and we may well declare with a holy doctor: " Where a part of me reigns, I believe I reign also; where my flesh is glorified, I am glorified; where my blood is king, I too am king."

But listen, Christian! Jesus does not wish to reduce you to the sterile honor of knowing His triumph. By His ascension He enters into the bosom of God the Father, not as a delegate, but as a precursor of humanity. This is the expression of St. Paul in his sixth chapter to the Hebrews. The precursor prepares the way for those who follow Him, and the place in which they are to rest after the fatigue of the journey. The precursor puts all things in order; He waits for His friends and calls them in. But how much more certain and efficacious His office is when, instead of being a servant merely, He is master of those for whom He prepares a place, and master of the place as well!

Christ, our precursor, is all this. Let us consider carefully the words of the apostle. He teaches us that Christ asserted our rights by His very presence in the bosom of God. For we are His property, and He has a right to enter into heaven with what belongs to Him. " He is our head; we are the body and members of that head." But where the head is, there likewise ought to be the body and the members. But Jesus would be our precursor only half-way if, by His action, He did not put us in condition to realize our lights — that is to say, if He did not prepare God to receive us and did not prepare us to take possession of God.

He is our priest "for ever"; or, in other words, He presents eternally to God the most sacred gifts that humanity has to offer, and to humanity the most sacred gifts of God. Our acts of religion would never have penetrated this sanctuary, in which they ought to mark out a place for us, if they did not pass through the hands of Jesus Christ. And if we return to God after our transgression, our repentance is only acceptable because "we have an advocate with the Father — Jesus Christ, the Just." If the groans of our misery or the expressions of our love are heard in heaven it is because Jesus appropriates them; for "He lives only to intercede for us.' He shows to the Father the marks of His glorious wounds, and makes His blood plead more strongly than that of Abel.

O God! Thou canst not resist this strong cry. It must be that Thou permittest us to mark our places in the sacred tabernacles which Thou fillest with Thy blessedness. This is the will of my Lord Jesus; and in preparing Thee to receive us He prepares us to take possession of Thee. The incarnate Word, humbled and annihilated in the days of His life on earth, became on the day of His ascension the inexhaustible treasury of the gifts of God. "Christ, ascending on high, led captivity captive, and gave gifts to men" (Ephes. iv. 8). Thus it is that the remedies of our faults, the succor of our weakness, the light of our darkness, the solace of our pains, the impulses towards good, all descend into our souls to make them worthy of God, whom we ought to possess. He extends His benign influence even to our corruptible flesh, which He prepares for the resurrection.

O Christian! meditate upon this glorious and consoling mystery. Never more turn to creatures as the end of your life. This world is not your resting-place. Honors, riches, pleasures, human affections are unworthy of a great and generous soul. Look to your Leader and Precursor; have confidence in His divine ministry; abandon yourself to His holy grace; raise your heart to heaven. Sursum corda!


THE apostles were assembled together in one place, awaiting in recollection and prayer the effect of the promises of Jesus. For He had said: "And if I go and prepare a place for you, I will come again and will take you to myself ; that where I am you also may be. . . . And I will ask the Father, and He shall give you another Paraclete [comforter or advocate], that He may abide with you for ever ; the Spirit of truth, whom the world cannot receive, because it seeth Him not nor knoweth Him ; but you shall know Him, because He shall abide with you and be with you " (John xiv. 3, 16, 17). Ten days after the Ascension of our Lord a mighty event took place. It was the fulfillment of the promise, and is thus recorded in the Acts of the Apostles : And suddenly there came a sound from heaven as of a mighty wind coming, and it filled the whole house where they were sitting. And there appeared to them cloven tongues as it were of fire, and it sat upon each one of them ; and they were all filled with the Holy Ghost, and they began to speak with divers tongues, according as the Holy Ghost gave them to speak" (Acts ii.)

O wonderful prodigy ! But a moment ago these men were ignorant and could not clearly understand the doctrine of their Master; now they possess a full knowledge of the most sublime truths. At one moment they express themselves in a weak and stammering manner; the next they are filled with a marvelous eloquence. At one moment they are weak and timid even to the extent of cowardice — they hide themselves, so as not to be involved in the misfortunes of their Master ; the next they come forth boldly, and fearlessly proclaim their faith and love, and this, too, before a people who load them with injuries and drag them before, their tribunals. They seem at one moment ungrateful and almost without hope; the next they are devoted to the words of their Master, even unto death. Now they are sad and downcast ; all at once their hearts abound in hope and joy. What has happened ? The Holy Ghost, having descended from heaven, has brought to perfection in the souls of the disciples the spirit and form of the Christian life, which until now were only in a crude, inchoative state. This is His special mission. The holy Fathers have sometimes called Him the " perfective force."

Learn from this, O Christian soul ! that the effusion of the Holy Spirit is as necessary for thy salvation as is the application of the blood and merits of Jesus Christ. " The end of man, which is to see God and possess Him eternally, is beyond the powers of nature," says St. Thomas of Aquin ; " our reason cannot conduct us to it, if its natural movement does not bring to its aid the instinct and motion of the Spirit of God. 9 ' It is so necessary for us that without it we possess only the rudiments of the Christian and supernatural life.

Jesus, the divine Architect, makes of our souls His temples, having purified them with His precious blood. It is the Holy Ghost who consecrates us in marking us with His character, and conferring upon us the unction of His love and the illumination of His gifts. Pentecost is therefore, in the Church, a universal and perpetual festival. Our baptism is a pentecost; our confirmation is a pentecost. Besides this, as St. Thomas teaches, the divine Paraclete returns constantly in His secret visits, to illuminate, strengthen, and beautify with His gifts the souls of the just.

But let us hear attentively the word of God : " The Lord does not come in times of disturbance " (3 Kings xix.) We must have peace in our souls ; we must remove the agitation of vain thoughts and of vain desires, if we would receive the Spirit of God. Let us await His coming, like the apostles, in recollection and prayer.

It is not likely that God will surprise us by sudden visits of His light and grace ; in the ordinary workings of His providence He only sends His Holy Spirit to us when we say with earnest fervor : Come ! Veni Sancte Spiritus !

Let us invoke Him, then, in the dark night of temptation, in the agony of doubt. When, enveloped in the darkness of ignorance and drawn on by the glare of creatures, our uncertain spirit asks for the truth to guide it ; and when, desirous of the knowledge and light of faith, we desire to penetrate the divine mysteries, let us invoke the Holy Spirit, for he is indeed the " Spirit of wisdom, understanding, and knowledge."

When we are moved to determine and fix our vocation in life, when we are about to perform some work in which our consciences are deeply concerned, or if it is our duty to direct. souls in the ways of God, let us invoke the " Spirit of counsel."

When we feel the love of God languish in our hearts, or even when we are moved by a holy zeal and we wish to love God with good effect, let us invoke the Holy Spirit, for He is truly the " Spirit of piety ."

When the power of evil attacks us and the world persecutes us, when passion torments us, and when sorrow oppresses us, let us earnestly call Him to our assistance, for He is the " Spirit of fortitude."

When the abyss of sin is open before us and ready to engulf us, let us invoke Him with all our strength, for He is the "Spirit of the fear of the Lord,"

In all our sufferings let us invoke Him, for He is indeed the Paraclete — the Comforter.

Against the slavery of all evil habits that weigh down the will let us invoke Him, for " where the Spirit of God is, there is true liberty."

Has He come ? Then let us meet Him with attention, vigilance, and profound respect. Let us not "'grieve the Spirit of God by our faults and imperfections."


MARY languished waiting anxiously many years for the blessed day that would reunite Her with Her Son. It came at length. Her lamp of life was peacefully extinguished in the home of the beloved disciple, St. John, surrounded by other apostles, whose messages she bore to heaven. A virgin sepulchre received the mortal remains of the spotless Virgin. It was the mysterious cradle soon to be visited by the Author of life. Sleep on, dear Blessed Mother, sleep on, whilst the infant Church mourns around thy grave !

Soon one of the disciples desired to see again His Mother's face, and to kiss the blessed hand that had caressed the Saviour of the world. The tomb was opened, but the immaculate body was not there ; instead of it were found roses and lilies of the sweetest perfume — a fitting symbol of her perfections and virtues.

Thus a miracle is performed in the silent shade of the tomb. Jesus, from the highest heavens contemplating the spotless body which was the tabernacle of His humanity, repeated the words of the prophet : " Thou wilt not give Thy Holy One to see corruption." He applies it to His holy Mother ; He will not suffer Her to feel the corruption of the grave. Mary slumbers in death, as Her Son once did, but He awakes Her with these loving words of the Canticles : "Arise, make haste, my love, my dove, my beautiful one, and come. The winter is now past ; the rain is over and gone. The flowers have appeared in our land ; the time of pruning is come ; the voice of the turtle is heard. The fig-tree has put forth her green figs ; the vines in flower yield their sweet smell. Arise, my love, my beautiful one, and come. . . . Come from Libanus, where the incorruptible cedars grow. Come and be crowned." *

* Antiphon of the Assumption.

Mary can neither rise nor ascend to heaven of Her own power, but the Author of life extends to Her His omnipotent force, places His angels at Her service, and they bear Her to Her home in heaven.

To us poor mortals the privilege of incorruption in the tomb does not belong. Wretched children of Adam, defiled, from the first moment of our existence, by original sin, unfaithful to the grace of our regeneration, frequently guilty of sin after having been pardoned, we have opened to death all the avenues of life. Death entered with sin and has written on our flesh this terrible word : Corruption ! Nothing escapes its cruel tooth. The skin, gradually eaten away, soon disappears entirely, leaving only a dry skeleton ; and this, too, silently crumbling into dust, is mingled with the surrounding earth by the grave-digger's spade when he is preparing a place for other dead bodies. This is the end of all.

Let us not be terrified, however, at our nothingness. Men may seek for us in vain ; but the all-seeing eye of God follows through the mazes of nature the wanderings of the particles which once composed our bodies. When the world shall have finished its course the Author of life will visit the empire of death, and with His sovereign voice will address the elements of which human bodies were once constituted, saying : " Unite, arise, come." Then the bones of each human being shall be recomposed, and the flesh shall recover the texture and color by which it was once before known. This is a certain truth.

And it is no less certain that our resurrection will be the same as our death. It will be glorious or ignominious, it will be for eternal joy or eternal sorrow, according as our death shall have been in justice or sin.

Let us meditate seriously on these truths ; and whilst we carry about with us our bodies as vessels made by the divine hand for honor, and destined to receive from the same hand a new existence which no inimical force can destroy, let us take good care not to make of them objects of almost idolatrous attention which cannot save them from the ravages of time or the corruption of the grave. If to-day we hear the forebodings of death, if we are saddened by our infirmities, if our thoughts are gloomy and dark, if the perfection of our souls is retarded or burdened with the weight of our bodies, let us not repine. Patience ! Patience ! One day this poor companion of the soul will rise immortal, incorruptible, brighter than the stars of heaven, obedient to the commands of the soul which will impart to it a wonderful agility. If the body presses us with gross demands, and even incites to sin, we must inexorably repress it. We must preserve ourselves from all defilement by wise precautions, strong resolutions, and salutary chastisements. The more we resemble in the flesh the unsullied flesh of our Holy Mother, the more resplendent will be the glory of our resurrection.


HEAVEN is opened. Our Most Holy Mother, invited by Her Son, triumphantly enters in. " Come and be crowned,’ our Saviour says to Her. Let us assist in spirit at this coronation. It is the eternal consecration of all the virtues, of all the dolors of Mary. It is the recompense which confers upon Her the greatest power ever before imparted to a creature. All the kings of Judah gather round their well-beloved daughter. " David dances for joy ; the angels and archangels unite with Israel's sweet singer to chant the praises of their Queen. The virtues proclaim Her glory ; the principalities, powers, and dominations exult with joy ; the thrones felicitate Her who was the living and immaculate throne of the Most High. The cherubim salute Her in a canticle of praise, and the seraphim declare Her glory," says St. John Damascene. Finally Jesus comes, and, amid the plaudits of the whole Court of Heaven, places a crown on the brow of His Most Blessed Mother.

Jesus forgets nothing. All is crowned in Mary : Her thoughts, Her desires, Her actions, Her virtues, Her merits — even Her privileges, of which She had rendered Herself most worth by Her constant correspondence with the admirable designs of God. The feast of the Coronation is a feast of justice.

Christian soul, this feast of justice ought to rejoice your heart ! It is your Mother is honored, it is your Mother's triumph ; and Her triumph teaches us that we have a just God in heaven, who, when the day of remuneration comes, will remember all. Therefore what signify the difficulties, sorrows, languors, and tribulations of our short lives ? "For the rest there is laid up for us a crown of justice which the Lord, the just judge, will bestow upon us in that day" (2 Tim. iv.) O senseless souls who run after earthly goods, can you say this of the world you seem to adore or of the rulers of the world ? They promise riches, pleasures, celebrity, love. Your whole soul is held in a state of tension by the toys of imagination, covetous desires, or other passions ; your senses themselves are disturbed, your health is injured, your life is filled with intrigues, troubles, and meannesses. Humble yourselves, throw away earthly cares, else you will never be able to say, with the noble and fervent confidence of the true Christian : " There is laid up for me a crown." Crowns of gold or of roses, of honor or affection, often slip from your grasp just when you think you hold them most securely. And if you were able to obtain at once all the crowns of the world, you must bring them at last before the "just Judge," who will, with pitiless hand, tear them from your brow and throw them down to rot where you received them. We cannot carry with us to heaven useless or hurtful ornaments. Our crown in heaven — our true crown — will remain eternally on our brow and will never fade. "And when the Prince of pastors shall appear you shall receive a never-fading crown of glory " (1 Peter v. 4).

Feed yourself, then, O my soul ! on these deep and consoling thoughts. The all-just Rewarder of all faithful souls sees you and knows you. Despise the vain objects of worldlings and cling to the road that brings you to a crown of glory. It is a rough and difficult road. You will have to overcome obstacles, to leap over more than one abyss, to avoid ambuscades(def. attack from an ambush.), to fight the enemy, to repair reverses and even defeats. Courage ! Courage ! All your marches, all your efforts, all your labors and combats are in God's keeping : " For the rest there is laid up for you a crown." You will say: " If I could only march alone on the hard road leading to glory ! But no ; I must carry along with me this miserable body. It is a furnace of sin, and of sorrow too. It obscures my sight so that I cannot see clearly what I ought to see ; from it come doubts, scruples, dryness, disquietude, chagrin, and anguish. From time and from nature it receives many blows and wounds. How many are the evils, both external and internal, of our sad lives ! " Courage ! Courage ! All these are counted ; all will be crowned. At once a champion, a pilgrim, and a martyr, you will be able to say with the great Apostle of the Gentiles : " I have fought the good fight, I have finished my course, I have kept the faith. For the rest, there is laid up for me a crown of justice, which the Lord, the just judge, will render to me at that day ; and not to me only, but to them also who love His coming " (2 Tim. iv. 7, 8).

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September 23: Saint Linus, Pope and Martyr
Commemoration of Saint Thecla, Virgin and Martyr
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Our Lady of Mercy (Our Lady of Ransom)
Dominican Martyrology
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September 27: Saints Cosmas And Damian, Martyrs
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September 29: Dedication Of Saint Michael The Archangel
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October 1: Seventeenth Sunday after Pentecost
Saint Remigius, Bishop and Confessor, Apostle of the Franks
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Dominican Martyrology
October 7: Feast of the Most Holy Rosary
Saint Mark, Pope and Confessor, Saints Serqius, Bacchus, Marcellus And Apuleius, Martyrs
Commemoration of Saint Justina, Virgin and Martyr
Blessed Matthew Carrerii, Confessor , OP Book
Dominican Martyrology
October 8: Eighteenth Sunday after Pentecost
Saint Bridget, Widow
Dominican Martyrology
October 9: Saint John Leonardi
Saint Dionysius, Bishop and Martyr, and Saints Rusticus And Eleutherius, Martyrs
Dominican Martyrology
October 10: Saint Francis Borgia, Confessor
Saint Lewis Bertrand, Confessor, OP Book
Dominican Martyrology
October 11: Maternity of the Blessed Virgin Mary
Blessed James of Ulm, Lay Brother, Confessor, OP Book
Dominican Martyrology
October 12: Our Lady of the Pillar (Nuestra Señora del Pilar)
Bl. Dominic Spadafora,C. OP Rite
Dominican Martyrology
October 13: Saint Edward The Confessor, King of England
Dominican Martyrology
October 14: Saint Callixtus I, Pope and Martyr
Blessed Magdalen Pannatieri OP Book
Dominican Martyrology
October 15: Nineteenth Sunday after Pentecost
Saint Teresa of Avila, Virgin
Dominican Martyrology
October 16: Saint Hedwig, Widow
Dominican Martyrology
October 17: Saint Magaret Mary Alacoque
Dominican Martyrology
October 18: Saint Luke, Evangelist
Dominican Martyrology
October 19: Saint Peter of Alcantara, Confessor
Dominican Martyrology
October 20: Saint John Cantius, Confessor
Dominican Martyrology
October 21: Saint Hilarion, Abbot
Commemoration of Saint Ursula and her Companions, Virgins and Martyrs
Dominican Martyrology
October 22: Twentieth Sunday after Pentecost
Blessed Peter of Tiferno, Confessor, OP Book
Dominican Martyrology
October 23: Saint Anthony Marie Claret
Blessed Bartholomew Breganza, Bishop and Confessor OP Book
Dominican Martyrology
October 24: Saint Raphael, Archangel
Dominican Martyrology
October 25: St. Isidore the Farmer, Patron of Madrid
Saints Chrysanthus And Daria, Martyrs
Dominican Martyrology
October 26: Saint Evaristis, Pope and Martyr
Blessed Damien of Finario,Confessor OP Book
Dominican Martyrology
October 27: Vigil of Saints Simon And Jude, Apostles
Dominican Martyrology
October 28: Saints Simon And Jude, Apostles
Dominican Martyrology
October 29: Feast of Christ the King
Twentieth-first Sunday after Pentecost
Blessed Benvenuta Bojani,Virgin OP Book
Dominican Martyrology
October 30: Mass of Preceding Sunday.
Dominican Martyrology
October 31: Vigil Of All Saints
Dominican Martyrology

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