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[155] as though to himself: ‘I don't profess any romantic indifference to life; and certainly, in my own private relations, I have as much that is dear to wish to live for as any man. But I do not desire to survive the independence of my country.’ These words were uttered with a profound, pensive earnestness, which effectually ended the debate.

Jackson prayed for the independence of his country; or, if that might not be, he desired not to survive its overthrow. God could not grant the former, for reasons to be seen anon, wherefore He granted the latter. The man died at the right time. He served the purpose of the Divine Wisdom in his generation. He went upward and onward upon the flood-tide of his fame and greatness, until it reached its very acme; and thence he went up to his rest. After that came the ebb-tide, the stranding, and the wreck. This, surely, is a singular mark of Heaven's favor, lifting him almost to the rank of that antediluvian hero ‘who walked with God, and he was not; for God took him.’ When his fame and success were at their zenith, never yet blighted by disaster; when the cause he loved better than life was most hopeful; when he had just performed his most brilliant exploit, and could leave his country all jubilant with his praise, and glowing with gratitude for his deliverance; before the coming woe had projected upon his spirit even the fringe of that shadow which would have been to him colder than death—that was the time for Jackson to be translated.

The other thing, which alone would have been better—to lead his country on from triumph to triumph to final deliverance—to hang up his sword in the sanctuary, and to sit down a freeman amidst the people he had saved—that we would not permit God to effect; and that we were not fit to have such deliverance wrought for us, even by a Jackson, this God would demonstrate before he took him away; for the true great man is a gift from heaven, informed with a portion of its own life and fire. Some small critics have argued that great men are born of their times; that they are mere impersonations of the moral forces common to their cotemporaries. This, be assured, may be true of that species of little great men, of whom Shakespeare writes, that ‘they have greatness thrust on them.’ The true hero is not made by his times, but makes them, if indeed material of greatness be in them. They wait for him, in sore need, perhaps, of his kindling touch, groping in perilous darkness towards destruction, for want of his true light: they produce him not. God sends him. There be three missions for such a true great man among men. If ‘the iniquity of the Amorites is already full,’ the Great Power, the

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