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31:2 11. Brande's Encyclopædia-Ali-

ART. VI. RATIONAL PSYCHOLOGY

son's History

45

ITS NATURE, ENDS AND VALIDITY. 339| 12. Grace Kennedy's Jessy Allan 495
Art. VII. PHILOSOPHY OF DR. 13. Baxter's Saints' Rest

496

Rauch. By J. W. Nevin, D.D., 14. Duncan's Cottage Fireside . 496

President of Marshall College, 15. Chalmers's Lectures on Romans497

Mercersburg, Pa.

418 16. Smyth's Ecclesiastical Cate-

ART. VIII. ENGLISH Phonology.

chism

497

By Rev. Henry N. Day, Prof. of 17. Church's Antioch

497

Sacred Rhetoric, Western Re- 18. Marshall's Lawfulness of Mar-

serve College, Hudson, Ohio. 432

riage

497

ART. IX. EXPOSITION OF Luke 16: 19. Bickersieth’s Lord's Supper · 498

1-14. By Pastor Brauns, in 20. Up and Be Doing

Oesselse, near Hanover. Trans- 21. Cecil's Remains

498

lated by the Editor.

454

Art. X. EDUCATION OF INDIGENT ART. XII. LITERARY INTELLIGENCE 499

.

498

THE

AMERICAN

BIBLICAL REPOSITORY.

JULY, 1843.

SECOND SERIES, NO, XIX. WHOLE NO. LI.

ARTICLE I.

PUNISHMENT, ITS NATURE AND DESIGN.

INTRODUCTORY NOTE.

The subsequent article, from one who is familiar with the origin, history and operation of law, will commend itself to the thoughtful and philanthropic portion of the community. In our estimation, exhibiting as it does our own views, it is worth its weight in gold. We hope every reader of the Re. pository will be deeply imbued with its principles, and we commend it to the attention of editors of weekly papers for extracts, in order that through their more extended influence, the public mind may be called to consider this all-important subject.-What is to become of us as a people ; what are to be the consequences to our children, if the perpetrator of crime shall so awaken the sympathies of mankind, that in the morbid tenderness of their feelings for him, they shall forget altogether how much the general weal of society depends on the prompt infliction of proper penalties on the violators of wholesome law? Ed.

The most important concern of the State, is its Criminal Jurisprudence. Peace and order, the security of person and property, life and its incidents, in great measure, depend upon it. We sleep in safety through its guardianship; we go abroad without peril through its protection; multitudes feel no other SECOND SERIES, VOL. X. NO. I.

1

How shall a par

restraint. The abandoned and the brutal acting out their wills, inflicting death, outraging person, robbing property, invading the dead hour of night and making its darkness and repose the facility of wickedness and means of terror, our houses ceasing to be our protection, in the power of burglars with us and all our comforts at their mercy, some suffering, all alarmed, are instances of the criminal law having failed of its first and most valuable office, the prevention of crime; are proofs of the inadequacy of its sanctions. To these may be added a long and foul list of forgeries, cheats and embezzlements, carrying ruin to the unsuspecting, and filching from widows and orphans, from the aged and dependent, bread.

But important as Criminal Jurisprudence is in this view, in another aspect it is of more weighty consideration. It affords the instruction under which the estimate of crime is made, and forms the common mind upon the subject. ticular act be regarded ? Is it criminal? Is it flagitious or venial? Is it scandalous or creditable? Is the cornmission of it imputed with infamy to the malefactor, branding its perpetrator with that character, or is it set down as the excusable failing or positive trait of a man of honor, not diminishing his respectability? To these questions the answers of the community will be in accordance with the criminal law and its administration.

There are, then, two objects of criminal jurisprudence ;—the first is, to secure the community from injury by deterring the unprincipled and wicked from the commission of crime through dread of its punishment:—the second, to produce a just moral estimate, connecting crime and infamy, so that the unprincipled with any remains of self-respect or love of character, will not hazard the ignominy, and those yet untainted, and especially the youth in their training, shall receive proper impression, and be imbued with right sentiment with respect to acts of moral obliquity; making the thought of guilt revolting, and the mind to shudder and shrink at a suggestion of it.

The events of the time are sorrowful evidence, that there is relaxation of criminal law in efficacy both for restraining crime, and for instilling moral sentiments rendering the mind incapable of base purposes. It is deplorable to see the extent and extremity of suffering produced by crime, but more deplorable to notice the persons who are the criminals. The daily press, presentments of grand juries, the conversation of all neighborhoods, have for their common topics, want and wo spread through society by the flagitious conduct of men who still more pitiable, have carried infamy into circles where we should expect nothing but unsullied purity, and where a good name should be of priceless value. Foul deeds, from ruffian violence upon life, through the black catalogue of arson, rape, burglary, theft, and swindling of every degree and contrivance, are common occurrences; and while from the halls of justice a voice proclaiming the fearful increase of crime, is sounding in our ears, the executive informs us, that there is a morbid sympathy with offenders interposing between crime and punishment. It is time for the community to take this subject into their serious consideration : we say their serious consideration ; that the members of the community shall investigate this subject so as to form positive opinions upon it as a practical matter most nearly concerning them. There are some men whose observation and judgment give intrinsic value to their conclusions, who say, that this subject of criminal jurisprudence has been wholly under the direction of notionists in philanthropy; that these notionists coming forward with gratuitous service, in organized and imposing forms, have arrested and played upon the superficial ear with sentimental refinement, and with the assent of the public always pleased to be relieved froin duty, taking this subject under their own management, in effect have provided a substitute for punishment, which neither deters from guilt nor makes it abhorrent, and have schooled the common mind into aversion not to the commission of crime but to the condemnation of it. When has there been a murder with more aggravating circumstances than that of Adams by Colt ? Yet the periodical, highest in political standing and probably most powerful in our country, represents Colt as the sufferer of vindictive vengeance, and araigns all before whom his cause came in legal proceeding as its guilty inflicters. The law and its tribunals are condemned: the mur, derer justified. How much is there of this —the law prostrated before the malefactor: the tide of sympathy sustaining the offender; justice down-trodden. In one paper we read the presentment of a grand jury, solemnly protesting, that pardons are so readily granted, that the administracion of criminal law is a useless expense; in another, we have the message of the governor, the liberal dispenser of these pardons, deploring the relaxation of criminal justice, and complaining, that the court and jury convicting and sentencing one day, recommmend to mercy and remission the next.

near us.

That there is fault somewhere in relation to this subject, all assert. The prevailing delinquency is shocking. It comes too

Where we have been best satisfied of integrity and religion, where the circle of family and friends has been of unstained honor, we are amazed with the astounding intelligence of deep and shameful guilt, involving the victims in ruin and distress, the perpetrators in wretchedness and infamy, all taking place where there was the fullest confidence of prosperity and honor. If property only were affected, if the only consequences were the rich made poor, the affluent reduced to beggary, and widows and orphans, the aged and dependent deprived of the support anxiously provided by the self-denying and frugal foresight of husbands and fathers, or their own stinted savings, it might be endured; but the wreck of innocence, of character, of moral worth is startling : it is a state of things not to be endured: the order of society will be reversed, and the profligate and abandoned form the public morals, direct the legislation, and control the administration and execution of the laws.

There is fault somewhere :-fault of no trifling nature, but debauching the common morals, and jeoparding the common safety.

Where is this fault ? Certainly not in the severity of the laws. The advocates of clemency have been left to institute and perfect their own systems according to their own projects. They differ concerning the merit of these systems, and say hard things. The feature common to their systems is confinement to labor; but some require this confinement to be solitary, while others allow the convicts to do their prescribed work in company, but in silence. More clemency is not suggested except by a class of philosophers, who assert, that the word “punishment” is a brutal, savage expression irreconcilable with humanity, ana insist, that the idea and the term ought to be expunged frota thought and language. They argue, that crime is the result of diseased or perverted mind; that it can no more be charged upon any one than sickness or insanity; that where there is blame, it rests upon society for suffering the infection that corrupts innocence; and that the least that can be done is to provide hospitals to receive those who transgress the laws, and cure them of this malady. This doctrine has been expounded and enforced by a distinguished and popular lecturer, and received with no inconsiderable approbation. There is plausible reason for holding it to be the carrying out to its just

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