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[135] and how strongly the public suffrages confirmed that opinion. His very name seemed to disarm party spirit with talismanic power; for many, who had never acted with his political friends, prided themselves in testifying their unlimited confidence in him.

It is fresh in your memories with what trembling apprehensions he shrunk from the loftly attitude of the chair of State, and yet, when placed there, with what singular ease and dignity he presided, and with what signal ability he discharged its various important duties. His government was firm and decided, yet it was so mild and gentle that its influence was chiefly perceptible in his happy facility of allaying party spirit, and all the angry passions of our nature. It was like that of a beloved and revered parent, whom all are disposed to honor and obey.

Amidst these high military and political honors, which his fellow-citizens took delight in bestowing on him, almost every institution of a literary, religious, patriotic, benevolent, or professional character seemed to vie with each other in conferring their highest honors on him. In 1781, Yale College conferred on him the honorary degree of A. M. Harvard University acknowledged the value of his literary acquirements, by conferring on him the degree of A. M., in the year 1787 ; and, in 1810, the degree of M. D.; and, in 1817, the highest honor of that seminary, the degree of Ll.D.

The Society of Cincinnati recognized him as one of their most distinguished members. He was elected to deliver the first oration before them, on the 4th of July, 1787; and, on the death of Gen. Lincoln, their first president, Gen. Brooks was elected to succeed him.

He was a member of the Academy of Arts and Sciences. He was president of the Washington Monument Association, of the Bunker-hill Monument Association, and of the Bible Society of Massachusetts.

Having faithfully and ably discharged the duties of chief magistrate for seven successive years, he expressed his determination to retire from the cares and anxieties of public life. How great were the public regrets, and how gladly would a large majority of his fellow-citizens have retained his valuable services! but they forebore urging him to any further sacrifices for the good of his country. He retired to private life with dignity, and with the love and blessings of a grateful people.

Having imperfectly traced the brilliant path of his public career, let us for a moment contemplate Gov. Brooks in his private character; and perhaps we may discover the true source of all his greatness, the charm which bound the hearts of his countrymen to him in ties so strong. He possessed a heart free from all guile, and every inordinate selfish feeling,--an evenness of temper and sweetness of disposition. His discordant passions — for we presume he had them, being human — were kept in complete subjection to his virtues. Ho had a peculiar composure and complacency


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