previous next
“ [33] epithets, Master Holofernes, are sweetly varied!” Throw in this trifle also, as deference to a sentiment which dares to do that which it dislikes to hear named. But let us, meantime, be careful to use all plainness of speech — to call things rigorously by their right names. Whoever professes his readiness to obey this bill, call him “slave-catcher;” let the title he chooses stick to him. Heed no cry of “harsh language.” Yield not to any tenderness of nerves more sensitive than the conscience they cover; remember,--

There is more force in names
Than most men dream of; and a lie may keep
Its throne a whole age longer, if it skulk
Behind the shield of some fair-seeming name.

Mr. Curtis forgot to finish his argument, and show us how, in present circumstances, it is moral in us to exercise this legal right. I may have, by law, the right to exclude the world from my house; but surely there are circumstances, as in the case of a man dying on my threshold, where it would be gross inhumanity, utter sin before God, to exercise that right. Surely, the slave's claim on us is equal. How exactly level to the world's worst idea of a Yankee, this pocket argument that the Commonwealth would suffer by yielding to its noblest instincts; that Massachusetts cannot now afford to be humane, to open her arms, a refuge, in the words of her own statute of 1642, for all who “fly to her from the tyranny and oppression of their persecutors!” In 1850, our poor, old, heavy-laden mother must leave that luxury to Turks and other uncalculating barbarians! We Christians “must take thought for the morrow,” and count justice, humanity, and all that, mere fine words! But is the slave a foreigner? Not, surely, when we pledge our whole physical force to his master to keep

Creative Commons License
This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike 3.0 United States License.

An XML version of this text is available for download, with the additional restriction that you offer Perseus any modifications you make. Perseus provides credit for all accepted changes, storing new additions in a versioning system.

hide Places (automatically extracted)

View a map of the most frequently mentioned places in this document.

Sort places alphabetically, as they appear on the page, by frequency
Click on a place to search for it in this document.
Massachusetts (Massachusetts, United States) (1)

Download Pleiades ancient places geospacial dataset for this text.

hide People (automatically extracted)
Sort people alphabetically, as they appear on the page, by frequency
Click on a person to search for him/her in this document.
B. R. Curtis (1)
hide Dates (automatically extracted)
Sort dates alphabetically, as they appear on the page, by frequency
Click on a date to search for it in this document.
1850 AD (1)
1642 AD (1)
hide Display Preferences
Greek Display:
Arabic Display:
View by Default:
Browse Bar: