us in that achievement?
had her republics, but they were the republics of one freeman and tel slaves; and the battle of Marathon
was fought by slaves unchained from the door-posts of their masters' houses.
had her republics: they were the republics of wealth and skill and family, limited and aristocratic.
She had not risen to a sublime faith in man. Holland
had her republic, the republic of guilds and landholders, trusting the helm of State to property and education.
And all these which at their best held but a million or two within their narrow limits, have gone down in the ocean of time.
A hundred cars ago our fathers announced this sublime, and, as it seemed then, foolhardy declaration,--that God intended all men to be free and equal: all men, without restriction, without qualification, without limit.
A hundred years have rolled away since that venturous declaration; and to-day, with a territory that joins ocean to ocean, with forty millions of people, with two wars behind her, with the sublime achievement of having grappled with the fearful disease that threatened her central life and broken four millions of fetters, the great Republic, stronger than ever, launches into the second century of her existence.
The history of the world has no such chapter, in its breadth, its depth, its significance, or its bearing on future history.
Well may we claim that this centennial year is the baptism of the human race into a new hope for humanity.
Are we not entitled, then, coming with the sheaves of such a harvest in our hands, to say to the world, “Behold the blessing of God on our right faith in the human race!”
Well, gentlemen, if that is sober prose, without one tittle of exaggeration, without one fond conceit borrowed from our kindred with the actors or from our birth in these streets,--if that is the sober record,--with how much