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DUTIES OF THE CITIZEN

STRANGE and impressive associations rise in the mind of a man from the New World who speaks before this august body in this ancient institution of learning. Before his eyes pass the shadows of mighty kings and warlike nobles, of great masters of law and theology; tĽrough 5 the shining dust of the dead centuries he sees crowded figures that tell of the power and learning and splendor of times gone by; and he sees also the innumerable host of humble students to whom clerkship meant emancipation, to whom it was well-nigh the only outlet from the dark 10 thraldom of the Middle Ages.

This was the most famous universityo of medieval Europe at a time when no one dreamed that there was a new world to discover. Its services to the cause of human knowledge already stretched far back into the remote past at 15 the time when my forefathers, three centuries ago, were among the sparse band of traders, ploughmen, woodchoppers and fisherfolk who, in hard struggle with the iron unfriendliness of the Indian-haunted land, were laying the foundations of what has now become the giant 20 republic of the West. To conquer a continent, to tame the shaggy roughness of wild nature, means grim warfare; and the generations engaged in it cannot keep, still less add to, the stores of garnered wisdom which once were theirs, and which are still in the hands of their brethren 25 who dwell in the old land. To conquer the wilderness means to wrest victory from the same hostile forces with which mankind struggled in the immemorial infancy of The primeval conditions must be met by pri

our race.

meval qualities which are incompatible with the retention of much that has been painfully acquired by humanity as through the ages it has striven upward toward civilization. In conditions so primitive there can be but a prim5 itive culture. At first only the rudest schools can be established, for no others would meet the needs of the hard-driven, sinewy folk who thrust forward the frontier in the teeth of savage man and savage nature; and many

years elapse before any of these schools can develop into 10 seats of higher learning and broader culture.

The pioneer days pass; the stump-dotted clearings expand into vast stretches of fertile farm land; the stockaded clusters of log cabins change into towns; the hunters

of game, the fellers of trees, the rude frontier traders and 15 tillers of the soil, the men who wander all their lives long

through the wilderness as the heralds and harbingers of an oncoming civilization, themselves vanish before the civilization for which they have prepared the way. The chil

dren of their successors and supplanters, and then their 20 children and children's children, change and develop with

extraordinary rapidity. The conditions accentuate vices and virtues, energy and ruthlessness, all the good qualities and all the defects of an intense individualism, self-reliant,

self-centered, far more conscious of its rights than of its 25 duties, and blind to its own shortcomings. To the hard

materialism of the frontier days succeeds the hard materialism of an industrialism even more intense and absorbing than that of the older nations; although these

themselves have likewise already entered on the age of a 30 complex and predominantly industrial civilization.

As the country grows, its people, who have won success in so many lines, turn back to try to recover the possessions

of the mind and the spirit which perforce their fathers threw aside in order better to wage the first rough battles for the continent their children inherit. The leaders of thought and of action grope their way forward to a new life, realizing, sometimes dimly, sometimes clearsightedly, 5 that the life of material gain, whether for a nation or an individual, is of value only as a foundation, only as there is added to it the uplift that comes from devotion to loftier ideals. The new life thus sought can in part be developed afresh from what is round about in the New 10 World; but it can be developed in full only by freely drawing upon the treasure houses of the Old World, upon the treasures stored in the ancient abodes of wisdom and learning, such as this where I speak to-day. It is a mistake for any nation merely to copy another; but it is an 15 even greater mistake, it is a proof of weakness in any nation, not to be anxious to learn from another and willing and able to adapt that learning to the new national conditions and make it fruitful and productive therein. It is for us of the New World to sit at the feet of the Gam-20 alielo of the Old; then, if we have the right stuff in us, we can show that Paul in his turn can become a teacher as well as a scholar.

To-day I shall speak to you on the subject of individual citizenship, the one subject of vital importance to you, 25 my hearers, and to me and my countrymen, because you and we are citizens of great democratic republics. A democratic republic such as each of ours—an effort to realize in its full sense government by, of and for the people-represents the most gigantic of all possible social 30 experiments, the one fraught with greatest possibilities alike for good and for evil. The success of republics like

yours and like ours means the glory, and our failure the despair, of mankind; and for you and for us the question of the quality of the individual citizen is supreme. Under other forms of government, under the rule of one man or of 5 a very few men, the quality of the rulers is all-important. If, under such governments, the quality of the rulers is high enough, then the nation may for generations lead a brilliant career and add substantially to the sum of world

achievement, no matter how low the quality of the aver10 age citizen; because the average citizen is an almost negli

gible quantity in working out the final results of that type of national greatness.

But with you and with us the case is different. With you here, and with us in my own home, in the long run, 15 success or failure will be conditioned upon the way in

which the average man, the average woman, does his or her duty, first in the ordinary, every-day affairs of life, and next in those great occasional crises which call for the heroic virtues. The average citizen must be a good 20 citizen if our republics are to succeed. The stream will

not permanently rise higher than the main source; and the main source of national power and national greatness is found in the average citizenship of the nation. There

fore it behooves us to do our best to see that the standard 25 of the average citizen is kept high; and the average can

not be kept high unless the standard of the leaders is very much higher. 1 It is well if a large proportion of the leaders in any re

public, in any democracy, are, as a matter of course, drawn 30 from the classes represented in this audience to-day; but

only provideed that those classes possess the gifts of sympathy with plain people and of devotion to great

ideals. You and those like you have received special advantages; you have all of you had the opportunity for mental training; many of you have had leisure; most of you have had a chance for the enjoyment of life far greater than comes to the majority of your fellows. To 5 you and

your kind much has been given, and from you much should be expected. Yet there are certain failings against which it is especially incumbent that both men of trained and cultivated intellect and men of inherited wealth and position, should especially guard themselves, 10 because to these failings they are especially liable; and if yielded to their-your-chances of useful service are hat an end.

Let the man of learning, the man of lettered leisure, beware of that queer and cheap temptation to pose to 15 himself and to others as the cynic, as the man who has outgrown emotions and beliefs, the man to whom good and evil are as one. The poorest way to face life is to face it with a sneer. There are many men who feel a kind of twisted pride in cynicism; there are many who 20 confine themselves to criticism of the way others do what they themselves dare not even attempt.

There is no more unhealthy being, no man less worthy of respect, than he who either really holds, or feigns to hold, an attitude of sneering disbelief toward all that is great and 25 lofty, whether in achievement or in that noble effort which, even if it fail, comes second to achievement. A cynical habit of thought and speech, a readiness to criticise work which the critic himself never tries to perform, an intellectual aloofness which will not accept contact with 30 life's realities—all these are marks, not, as the possessor would fain think, of superiority, but of weakness. They

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