North America - Volume 1 By Anthony Trollope 


But as to saying their prayers?  That, as far as I can see, has
come also, though perhaps not in - Page 490
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But As To Saying Their Prayers?

That, as far as I can see, has come also, though perhaps not in a manner altogether satisfactory, or to a degree which should be held to be sufficient.

Englishmen of strong religious feeling will often be startled in America by the freedom with which religious subjects are discussed, and the ease with which the matter is treated; but he will very rarely be shocked by that utter absence of all knowledge on the subject - that total darkness which is still so common among the lower orders in our own country. It is not a common thing to meet an American who belongs to no denomination of Christian worship, and who cannot tell you why he belongs to that which he has chosen.

"But," it will be said, "all the intelligence and education of this people have not saved them from falling out among themselves and their friends, and running into troubles by which they will be ruined. Their political arrangements have been so bad that, in spite of all their reading and writing, they must go to the wall." I venture to express an opinion that they will by no means go to the wall, and that they will be saved from such a destiny, if in no other way, then by their education. Of their political arrangements, as I mean before long to rush into that perilous subject, I will say nothing here. But no political convulsions, should such arise - no revolution in the Constitution, should such be necessary - will have any wide effect on the social position of the people to their serious detriment.

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