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[174] the old simplicity, there was a growing conformity to the maxims of the world in trade and fashion, and with it a corresponding unwillingness to hazard respectability by the advocacy of unpopular reforms. Unprofitable speculation and disputation on one hand, and a vain attempt on the other to enforce uniformity of opinion, had measurably lost sight of the fact that the end of the gospel is love, and that charity is its crowning virtue. After a long and painful struggle the disruption had taken place; the shattered fragments, under the name of Orthodox and Hicksite, so like and yet so separate in feeling, confronted each other as hostile sects, and

Never either found another
To free the hollow heart from paining;
They stood aloof, the scars remaining,
Like cliffs that have been torn asunder
A dreary sea now flows between;
But neither rain, nor frost, nor thunder,
Can wholly do away, I ween,
The marks of that which once has been.

We found about forty members assembled in the parlors of our friend Lewis, and, after some general conversation, Lewis Tappan was asked to preside over an informal meeting, preparatory to the opening of the Convention. A handsome, intellectual-looking man, in the prime of life, responded to the invitation, and in a clear, well-modulated voice, the firm tones of which inspired hope and confidence, stated the objects of our preliminary council, and the purpose which had called us together, in earnest and well-chosen words. In making arrangements for the Convention, it was thought expedient to secure, if possible, the services

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