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Wise Convalescent.

when, a few days since, we heard from Gov. Wise, he was in the hands of his medical man taking his pills and potions with a perseverance and a punctuality which seems to have been rewarded; for his Excellency is now clothed at least, if not in his right mind, and is making speeches with all that lunatic force which has always, in the day of his bodily health and strength, characterized his frenzied eloquence. He took the field in his finest fulgurant style at Richmond, Va., on the 1st inst. though it is only lately through The Charleston (S. C.) Courier that he reaches us in red-hot report. He followed Jeferson Davis, and in the matter of fuss and fire, he floored that official completely. In pure, unmitigtatd and sublimely inventive mendacity, we are inclined to think that Mr. Davis can give the Virginian any odds, and then vanquish him; but in the beautiful art of saying nothing and of seeming to say a great deal, Wise is still unsurpassed, nay, unapproached by any mortal. In this speech, he is especially sanguinary; for he spouts a campaign through the whole of it, and puts us to the stand in a peroration. It is all “fire,” “blood,” “the Lord of Hosts,” “fiery baptism,” “rivers of blood,” and at the end of this, our inconsistent though brilliant orator, adds: “Be in no haste — no. Hurry and flurry.” No flurry, quoth he!--that from a man who lives, moves and has his being in a flurry — who is, so to speak, an embodied flurry! No hurry — that to men who have precipitated [156] this wicked war, because they knew that the least delay would be fatal to their criminal hopes! because they were afraid to give the Southern people an opportunity of thinking! because time would surely show their injuries to be imaginary! No hurry and flurry! Why, without these there would have been no secession of Virginia at all. Flurry was the beginning of it, and hurry — was its consummation!

Both orators upon this occasion-both Davis and Wise — seem to take it for granted that Virginia has been dreadfully injured by the military movements of the Government in that State. They graciously permit us to fight, but insist upon themselves selecting the field, planning our campaigns, and directing all our movements. For example, Davis, who has made Virginia the battle-field quite as truly as we have accepted it as such, says: “Upon every hill which now overlooks Richmond, you have had and will continue to have, camps containing soldiers from. every State of the Confederacy; and to its remotest limits every proud heart beats high with indignation at the thought that the foot of the invader has been set upon the soil of Old Virginia.” That is to say this General Davis has transported his forces — horses foot-soldiers and artillery, to Virginia, to menace, and if he can, to capture the Federal Capital, and when we meet him nothing daunted, he tells the Virginians that we have invaded their State! There is an incoherence about this which can hardly be referred to the utmost possible saturation in whisky. We should have permitted the unmolested concentration of one [157] or two hundred thousand men upon this sacred soil of Virginia — we should have allowed Washington. to fell an easy prey to the Confederate Army--we should have gone on considering a hostile State as neutral, while she was forging weapons for our destruction; but as we did not do this, as we saw fit to meet the enemy upon his own soil before he could by his presence pollute ours, we are invaders, we are mercenaries, we are assassins, we are incendiaries. Why do not the fire-eaters of Virginia, instead of complaining, thank us for giving them so large a provision of their favorite diet? What would they have said of us if we had kept quietly at home?

It is a blunder for a military man to boast. War is to a considerable extent a matter of fortune and mere chance — something at least which military historians admit, although they may not be able to define it — must always be taken into account. Governor Wise says that he is “a civil soldier” --he is not, certainly, a soldier military enough to avoid saying: “Your true-blooded Yankee will never stand still in the presence of cold steel.” To this we can make no retort without falling into the same error; but we may safely suggest that men are not likely to run from an enemy whom, of their own free will and mere motion, they have traveled several thousand miles to meet. And when our armies have “extended their folds” --we quote the Wise words--“around Virginia as does the anaconda around his victim,” we beg leave to suggest that the State has quite as good a chance of remaining a victim as of [158] becoming a victor. “The tools to him who can use them ;” but when a man or State or army has none, what then is to be done? Governor Wise tells his soldiers to “get a spear — a lance! Manufacture your blades from old iron, even though it be the tires of your cart-wheels. Get a bit of carriage-spring and grind and burnish it in the shape of a bowie-knife, and put it to any sort of a handle, so that it be strong — ash, hickory or oak.” This looks desperate. When Gov. Wise says, “Take a lesson from John Brown!” when he condescends to say this, we think that a slightly milder style of boasting would be safer and more becoming.

June 19, 1861.

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