stood in the presence of an audience with higher hopes of the rapid progress and success of our cause than now. I remember with what devoted earnestness, with what unfaltering zeal, Ireland
has carried on so many years the struggle for her own freedom.
It is from such men, whose hearts lost no jot of their faith in the grave of Emmett
; over whose zeal the loss of Curran
could throw no damp; who are now turning the trophies of one field into weapons for new conquest; whom a hireling press and prejudiced public could never sever a moment from O'Connell
's side,--it is from the sympathy of such men that we have a right to hope much.
The image of the generous Isle not only comes to us “crowned with the spoil of every science, and decked with the wreath of every muse,” but we cannot forget that she lent to Waterloo
the sword which cut the despot's “shattered sceptre through;” and to American ears, the crumbled walls of St. Stephen
's yet stand to echo the eloquence of her Burke
, when at the foot of the British
throne he took his place side by side with that immortal rebel [pointing to the picture of Washington
]. From a priest of the Catholic Church we might expect superiority to that prejudice against color which freezes the sympathies of our churches, when Humanity points to the slave.
I remember that African
lips may join in the chants of the Church
, unrebuked even under the proud dome of St. Peter
's; and I have seen the colored man in the sacred dress pass with priest and student beneath the frowning portals of the College of the Propaganda at Rome
, with none to sneer at his complexion, or repulse him from society.
I remember that a long line of Popes, from Leo
, have denounced the sin of making merchandise of men; that the voice of Rome
was the first to be heard against the slave-trade;