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Atlantic Monthly, Vol. XI., February, 1863, No. LXIV. by Various

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soldiers, in extraordinary circumstances.

Military law, which cannot wait for the slow processes of civic
courts, is immediate and condign in its action, and is administered
by courts-martial, to which are confided the powers of judge and jury.
These courts examine into the cases, find verdicts, and pronounce
sentences,--all, however, subject to the revision and sanction of the
supreme authority which convened them.

Courts--martial are divided into two classes: _General Courts_, for
the trial of officers, and of the higher grades of offences; and
_Regimental_ or _Garrison Courts_, for the consideration of less
important cases in a regiment or garrison. General courts vary in the
number of members: they must be composed of not less than _five_, and
of never more than _thirteen_. Regimental or garrison courts are
never composed of more than three members. For general courts, only, a
judge-advocate is appointed to conduct the prosecution for the United
States.

The offences against military law are determined by the "Rules and
Articles of War," in which the principal offences are distinctly set
forth and forbidden; and, that unanticipated misconduct may not be
without cognizance and punishment, the _ninety-ninth_ article includes
all such cases under the charge of "conduct to the prejudice of good
order and military discipline," which is of universal scope.

The punishments are also set forth in the Articles of War. Those
prescribed for officers include death,--cashiering,[A]--cashiering,
with a clause disabling the officer from ever holding any office
under the United States,--dismissal,--suspension from rank and
pay,--reprimand. For soldiers the principal punishments are
death,--confinement,--confinement on bread-and-water diet,--solitary
confinement,--forfeiture of pay and allowances,--discharges.

[Footnote A: Cashiering implies something infamous in the British
service; and although it has been attempted to make no distinction
between cashiering and dismissing in our service, something of the
opprobrium still attaches to the former punishment.]

The conduct of the trial, the duties of all persons concerned,
members, judge-advocate, prisoner, witnesses, counsel, etc., are
given in detail, and will be very easily learned. Forms of orders for
convening courts-martial, modes of recording the proceedings, the form
of a general order confirming or disapproving the proceedings, the
form of the judge-advocate's certificate, and the forms of charges
and specifications under different articles of war, are given in
the Appendix, and are used _verbatim_ by all judge-advocates and
recorders. There are also explanations of the duties of courts of
inquiry, and of boards for retiring disabled officers; and extracts
from the Acts of Congress bearing upon military law. The Articles of
War are also given for reference. The book is thus rendered complete
as a manual for the conduct of courts-martial, from the original order
to the execution of the sentence.

From what has been said, it will be gathered that the work was needed,
that it admirably supplies the need, and that it may be recommended,
without qualification, as providing all the information which it
purports to provide, and which could be demanded of it, in a lucid,
systematic, and simple manner. It is an octavo volume, containing
377 pages, clearly printed in large type, and on excellent paper;
the binding is serviceable, being in strong buff leather, like other
law-books.

_Lectures on Moral Science_. Delivered before the Lowell Institute,
Boston. By MARK HOPKINS, D.D., LL.D. Boston: Gould and Lincoln. 12mo.

It is a little curious that there is not a single science in which
man is constitutionally, and therefore directly interested, to which
Emanuel Kant has not, in one way or another, written a _Prolegomena_.
Professionally he did so in the case of Metaphysic: and out of the
great original claim which he here established there emanates a
separate claim, in each particular science of the order already
indicated, to a sublime dictatorship. And chiefly is this claim valid
in Moral Philosophy; for it was his province, the first of all men,
clearly to reveal, as a scientific fact certified by demonstration,
the divine eminence of the practical above the merely speculative
powers of man,--the fulfilment of which mission justly entitled him
to all the privileges incident to the vantage-ground thus
gained,--privileges widely significant in a survey of that field where
chiefly these practical powers hold their Olympian supremacy, the
field of Moral Philosophy.

Nothing could have afforded us a better excuse for a _resume_ of Kant,
in this connection, than the new work of Dr. Hopkins. Of the many
treatises on Moral Science with which the reading world has been
flooded and bewildered since the time of Coleridge, there is this one
alone found worthy of being ranged along-side of the works of the
old Koenigsberg seer,--the one alone which, like his, deals with
the grander features of the science. It is the best realization
objectively of Kant's subjective principles that has yet been given.
But how, the plain English reader will ask, are we to understand from
this the place which the new work takes in literature? Not readily,
indeed, unless one has already taken the trouble to examine such of
Kant's treatises as have found their way out of German into hardly
tolerable English, and has, moreover, reflected upon the importance of
the principles therein established. But, of those who will read
this notice, not one out of fifty has had even the opportunity
for examination, not one out of five thousand has really taken the
opportunity, and, of those that have, one half, at least, have done so
independently of any philosophic aim, and have therefore reflected to
very little purpose on the principles involved. Therefore, what the
reader could not or has not chosen to do for himself we will do for
him, at the same time congratulating him that there is now placed in
his hands as complete and perfect a structure outwardly, in the work
under notice, as the groundwork furnished by the old master was, in
its subjective analysis, simple and profound.

Those who approach human nature, or the nature outside of us, with
a reverence for reality, will give precedence, after the manner of
Nature, to those powers which are predominant and determinative; and
in man these are Reason and Will. These two exist as identical in
Personality, which we may denominate as we choose, whether Rational
Will, or, as Kant does more frequently, Practical Reason. Here, in the
identity of these two powers in Personality, and still more in
their relation to each other as they are differentiated in personal
existence, does Morality originate and develop according to
principles.

Now let it be remembered that Kant's mission was, as above indicated,
to exclude the speculative side of our nature from any direct relation
to human destiny, inasmuch as it could not answer either of the
three great questions which every man everywhere and of necessity
puts,--Whence am I? What am I? and Whither do I tend?--and therefore
stood confused in the presence of any grand reality, whether human or
divine, and to make the Practical Reason the sole and immediate link
of connection between ourselves and the realities from the presence of
which the Speculative Reason had been driven. Then will it be
clearly seen how he would answer the fundamental question of Moral
Philosophy,--Wherein does the quality of Goodness originally reside?

The answer, from Kant's own lips, is this: "There is nothing in
the world, nor, generally speaking, even out of it, possible to be
conceived, which can without limitation be held good, but a _Good
Will_." The good is not in the end attained, not even in the volition,
but is a principle resident in the will itself. "The volition is
between its principle _a priori_, which is formal, and its spring _a
posteriori_, which is material; and since it must be determined by
something, and being deprived of every material principle, it must be
determined by the formal."

Now, although President Hopkins considers Moral Philosophy as a
philosophy of _ends_, he evidently does not mean ends _a posteriori_
and _material_, but ends _a priori_, using the term as the best
objective translation of _principles_. Almost as if with the conscious
design of making his work harmonize with the groundwork furnished by
Kant, he has developed a graduated series of conditions, according
to which we ascend "the great world's altar-stairs," from lower and
conditioned good up to that good which is the condition of all, itself
unlimited, namely, in the will fulfilling its original design. The
"law of limitation," according to which not only the subordinate
powers of man, but even the forces of Nature, from those concerned in
the highest animal organization down to that of gravitation, are made
to take their places in the chain of dependence which hangs from the
human will, is the most important part, scientifically, of the whole
work. It is in accordance with this law that the science of Morals
becomes a structure,--universal in its base and regularly ascending
after the order of Nature, harmonious in all its parts, and proceeding
upward within hearing of universal harmonies. Hitherto there has been
no such structure; but only tabernacles have been built, because there
was no Solomon to build a temple.

Once having determined the connection which there is between the Will
and the principle of Good, there still remains to be determined the
place which Reason has in this connection.

Merely to act according to some teleological or determining principle
gives man no preeminence above Nature, except in degree. That which is
peculiar to man is that he has the faculty of acting according to laws
_as represented and reflected upon in the light of thought_,--to which
reason is absolutely indispensable. Reason is therefore necessary to
choice,--to freedom. There can, therefore, no more be goodness without
reason than there can be without will. Yet there might be, as Kant
justly argues, if good were to be in any case identified with mere
happiness. "For," says he, "all the actions which man has to perform
with a view to happiness, and the whole rule of his conduct, would be
much more exactly presented to him by instinct, and that end had been
much more certainly attained than it ever can be by reason; and should
the latter also be bestowed on the favored creature, it must be of use
only in contemplating the happy predisposition lodged in instinct,
to admire this, to rejoice in it, and be grateful for it to the
beneficent Cause; in short, Nature would have prevented reason from
any practical use in subduing appetite, etc., and from excogitating
for itself a project of happiness; she would have taken upon herself
not only the choice of ends, but the means, and had with wise care
intrusted both to instinct merely." The fact, then, that reason has
been given, and has been endowed with a practical use, is sufficient
to prove that some more worthy end than felicity is designed,--namely,
a will good in itself,--rationally good,--that is, _from choice_.

Out of the _rationality_ of will is developed its _morality_. Here,
only, is found the possibility of failure in respect of the end
constitutionally indicated,--here only the avenues of temptation, by
which alien elements come in to array the man against himself in
a terrible conflict, so sublime that it is a spectacle to heavenly
powers. It is only as this rationality is clearly developed, and is
allotted its just place in Moral Science, that the universal structure
to which we have already alluded, and which, as we saw, culminated
in the will, assumes its peculiar sublimity. For the _voluntariness_
which is consciously realized in reason gives man the mastery over
constitutional processes, not merely to direct, but even to thwart
them; nor this merely for himself, but it is in his power, through
the nullification of his own constitution, to nullify also that of the
world, to dally with the institutions of Nature, and on the grandest
scale to play the meddler.

Merely of itself, apart from reason, the will could only work out its
teleological type in darkness and by blind necessity; there could be
no goodness, for this involves conscious elements. But through reason,
that which of itself the will would yield as unconscious impulse
obtains _representation_, and thus becomes a recognized principle,
which in connection with the feelings involves an element of
obligation.

Conscience, thus, instead of being a separate and independent faculty,
is, as Dr. Hopkins also places it, a function of the moral reason.
Into the courts of this reason come not only the higher indications of
will, but also the impulses of appetite, instinct, and affection,--not
moral in themselves, indeed, but yet assuming the garments of morality
as seen in this high presence.

That which was made fundamental by Kant, in all that he has left on
the subject of Moral Philosophy, is the position that it is wholly
to be developed out of practical reason, or will as represented in
reason. The same position is fundamental in President Hopkins's work,
and it is here that its philosophic value chiefly rests. This position
is developed in plain English, with strict scientific truth, and yet
with a warm and sympathetic glow, as regards outward embodiment,
that very much heightens the elevating power of the principles
and conclusions evolved. Nor is man, because of his independent
personality, made to stand alone, but always is he seen in the
higher and All-Comprehending Presence. Ideal truth is reached without
necessitating Idealism, and harmony is attained without Pantheism.

We have purposely confined ourselves to the most general feature of
the work, because it is this which gives it its great and distinctive
importance; yet the whole structure is as elaborately and beautifully
wrought as it is fitly grounded in the truth of Nature.

_The National Almanac and Annual Record for 1863_. Philadelphia:
George W. Childs. 12mo. pp. 600.

Volumes like this are the very staff of history. What a stride in
literature from the "Prognostications" of Nostradamus and Partridge,
and the imposture of such prophetic chap-books as the almanacs of
Moore and Poor Robin, to the bulky volumes teeming with all manner of
information, such as the "Almanach Imperial," the "New Edinburgh," or
"Thorn's Irish Almanac"! In the list of superior works ranking with
those just named is to be included the new "National Almanac." We have
here assuredly a vast improvement over anything in this way which
has heretofore been attempted among us. A more comprehensive range of
topics is presented, and such standard subjects as we should naturally
expect to find introduced are worked up with much more copiousness and
accuracy of treatment. It is evident on every page that a thoroughly
active and painstaking industry has presided over the preparation of
the volume. Statistics have not been taken at second-hand, where the
primary sources of knowledge could be rendered available. The details
of the great Departments of the Federal Government have been revised
by the Departments themselves. In like manner, the particulars
concerning the several States have in most cases been corrected by a
State officer. Thus, as respects the leading subjects in the book, we
have here not only the most accurate information before the public,
but we have it in the latest authorized or official form. Facts are
as a general rule brought down to date, instead of being six or
twelve months behind-hand, as has been the case heretofore in similar
publications, the compilers of which were content to await the tardy
printing by Congress of documents and reports. Hence the work is
pervaded by an air of freshness and vitality. It is not merely
a receptacle of outgrown facts and accomplished events, but the
companion and interpreter of the scenes and activities of the stirring
present. It strives to seize and embody the whole being and doing of
the passing time.

It is quite impossible to exhibit in these few lines any adequate
conception of the diversity and fulness of the subjects. All the
valuable results of the last census are classified and incorporated.
Then we have the entire organization of the military, naval, and
civil service,--the tariff and tax laws conveniently arranged,--the
financial, industrial, commercial, agricultural, literary,
educational, and ecclesiastical elements of our condition,--the
legislation of the last three sessions of Congress, and full and
detailed statistics of the individual States,--to which is added a
minute sketch of the foreign Governments. Nor can we overlook the
fact, that, in the abundant matter relating to our present war,
the narrative of events, obituary notices, etc., reach back to
the commencement of the Rebellion, so as to furnish a complete and
unbroken record of the contest from its outbreak. So much for the
diversified nature of the matter; and an idea may be formed of its
aggregate bulk from the fact that it exceeds, by nearly one-third, the
size of the "American Almanac."

The publication is, we trust, the dawning of a new era in this
department of our literature. We have done well heretofore, but we
have been behind many of the leading foreign works. There are in this
initial volume indications that the new series which it inaugurates
will be conducted with a thoroughness, enterprise, and skill which
cannot fail to supply a great want. The politician, statesman,
and scholar, the merchant, mechanic, and tradesman, every
newspaper-reader, and, in truth, every observant and thoughtful man,
of whatsoever profession or business, always wants at hand a minute
and trustworthy exhibition of the manifold elements which constitute
the changeful present as it ebbs and flows around him. Such hand-books
are indispensable for present reference, and they constitute an
invaluable storehouse for the future.

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