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It is related by a Yankee scribe, that General Sherman, being inquired of whether some Confederate clergyman might be permitted to pray for Jefferson Davis, replied: "Oh, yes; Jeff. Davis and the Devil both need praying for." We have nothing to say of the wit of the observation. Sherman's profession is that of arms, and he is not expected to be equally bright with the tongue and the sword. But he ought to be at least grateful to his benefactors and respectful to his superiors. When has the Devil ever injured or forsaken Sherman, that he should mention him in the same connection with Jeff. Davis? nay, speak of Jeff first, as if he were the senior officer? Such unfilial and irreverent treatment from the Old Gentleman's pet may well wring from his agonized bosom the exclamation: " How sharper than a serpent's tooth it is to have a thankless child!" Possibly, however, Sherman meant no discourtesy to his official superior. It may be that he does not believe in a Devil, any more than a Divine Providence, about which he is said to have expressed himself at Atlanta in blasphemous contempt. The New England race has become, of late, equally incredulous of Heaven and Hell. The appearance of Jeff. Davis supplies a void place in their theology. The Pantheistic ideas which they have adopted discover in Nature, in all her forms, a God; but there was still wanting a Devil. Jeff. Davis came and supplied the vacuum. When a New England man says "Go to the Devil," he only means, Go to Jeff. Davis. The Confederate President looms up like the Prince of Pandemonium in all Yankee imagination. He is the immortal Adversary of Peace, Order and Liberty. Although the Devil is said by Dr. Johnson to have been the first Whig, Jeff. Davis has thrown his illustrious predecessor completely into the shade. Satan only introduced rebellion into the court of Heaven, but Jeff. Davis raised its foul standard amongst the higher intelligence and purer saints of the Federal Union. He was the diabolical author of Secession and Disunion, and invented them both, because he would rather rule in Hell than serve in Heaven. But for him the victims of his infernal arts would even now return to their allegiance to the celestial hierarchies at Washington. There are not wanting those in our own borders who have discovered that he is the author of all our woes. Having lead us into mischief, he is striving to make us as unhappy as possible, intending, finally, to get out of the scrape himself, and leave the rest of us in the lurch. He is the author of short crops and bad weather; he raises the prices of bread and meat; makes breaches in the canals and railroads; interferes with the management of our armies, and causes general defeat and disaster. It is well understood that, if the Revolution should come to naught, he would suffer none of the pains and penalties of rebellion, but, on the contrary, would have a place offered him in Lincoln's Cabinet, with the probability of becoming his successor. Having no personal interest in the success of the cause, he naturally feels himself at liberty to make as many blunders as possible, assume the military control, put incompetent generals in positions of vital importance, and sacrifice Confederate armies to death and captivity. We differ from General Sherman in one thing. We never heard before that it did any good to pray for the Devil. Certainly, such a Devil as Jeff. Davis is past all possibility of salvation. We would much better pray for such saints in the flesh as Lincoln, Seward, Sherman, Turchen, Butler, Hunter, etc., who, though the salt of the earth, have their little imperfections, and are not quite angels; at least, we see, as yet, "no signs of wings sprouting from their shoulder-blades." There are a few cracks in their armor of steel. Let us pray that the Devil may find no vulnerable place to reach their innocent hearts. They have had nothing to do with the bloodshed and misery that have swept over the South like a volcanic eruption from Hell. Excellent men, though still subject to human frailties. Let the country pray that they may not fall into evil ways and come short of their reward.
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