as you began to broach your heretical doctrines in their ears; but their countenances gradually relaxed, as you went on. . . . You have enlivened and quickened even the hackneyed topic of peace; you have made figures and statistics eloquent; you have shamed the pomp and circumstance of war, even on its own favorite gala-day; and you entirely carried that great audience with you in your enthusiasm.
May the advocates of Peace be proud of their champion!1
wrote, July 5:—
I could never love you more than I did yesterday morning, and yet at night I was far more proud of your friendship than ever before.
To say you have done yourself honor is to say but little; but you have done a noble work, even though ridicule and sarcasm should follow you through life.
You have struck a blow at the false gods which the people worship.
, who was present at the exercises in Tremont Temple, then advanced in years, but spared for nearly a generation longer, wrote the next day, assuring Sumner
of the gratitude of thousands, and adding:—
You will be assailed by many, but truth is on your side, and you will rejoice on your dying day that you have uttered it boldly.
You have said no more than Channing and Worcester have said before you; though considering the time, place, and audience, it was a high effort of moral courage,—for which I thank you.
Rev. R. C. Waterston
, another hearer, referred to the oration in his sermon on the Sunday following, and said: ‘Happy will be that day, when the Christian
spirit which breathed through that testimony shall become universal among mankind;’ and in a note to Sumner
, written on Monday, said:—
Your views are no doubt in advance of the time, but there are good men who feel that they are based upon eternal truth, and are in strict accordance with the principles of Christ.
I do not know when I have had such high pleasure as I experienced in listening to your eloquent exposition of Gospel truth.
I thank you for so publicly and so fearlessly expressing your views.
That oration will live.
It will be a text-book for hundreds.
Should you never do any thing else than you have now done, you will not have lived in vain.
It must be printed and circulated through the whole land.
There is great work for it to do.