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This last touching ceremony took place on the 5th of June, amidst a large concourse of parishioners and strangers, of every sect and party: When the funeral procession was about to set out, M. Jaeglé, president of the consistory or ecclesiastical body to which Oberlin had belonged, placed on the coffin the pastoral robe of the deceased, the vice-president laid on it the Bible, and the mayor, or civil magistrate of the district, attached to the pall the decoration of the Legion of Honour, which had been presented by Louis XVIII. The coffin was borne by the elders of the congregation; and in moving along, twelve females sung a hymn in chorus. The front of the procession was led by the oldest inhabitant of the parish, bearing a cross of wood, given him by Louisa Schepler, to plant at the head of the grave, and on which were engraved the words, PAPA OBERLIN.
The funeral procession extended two miles in length, and the foremost had reached the churchyard of Foudai, where the interment was to take place, before the last had set out from the parsonage at Waldbach. When entering Foudai, a new and finelysounding bell, which M. Legrand had kindly presented to the church, began to toll, and it continued till the ceremonial was concluded. The coffin being deposited in front of the communion table, was hung over by many weeping mourners, while the body of the church was filled by a select number of persons, among whom might be seen several Roman Catholic priests, dressed in their ecclesiastical robes. The remainder of the vast crowd, computed to amount to three thousand individuals, took up an orderly position in the churchyard, the spectacle without being heightened by the devout appearance of a body of Roman Catholic women, kneeling in silent prayer around the cemetery. The funeral service was begun by M. Jaeglé, who, while in the pulpit, took occasion to read an affectionate address from Oberlin to his parishioners, which had been found among his papers, and intended to be read to them at his funeral. At the close of the service, and when the coffin was about to be lowered into the grave, a friend of the deceased—as is customary at the burial of distinguished individuals in France-delivered a short oration, eulogising the character, and pointing to the useful labours of the good man whose body was now to be consigned to the dust. Well as this was delivered, the tears which plenteously flowed from the eyes of the multitude, the sobs which were heard from the women and children who crowded round the grave, were, it was remarked, the most impressive funeral oration.
Oberlin was buried under the shade of a weeping willow, which overhung the tomb of his son Henry Gottfried, and there the body of the cher Papa was left to its repose.
Oberlin was succeeded in the cure of the Ban de la Roche by M. Graff; but that gentleman being soon after compelled to relinquish his pastoral duties from bad health, the cure was committed to another son-in-law of the deceased, M. Rauscher, a
person eminently qualified to continue the career of usefulness which Oberlin had begun. Oberlin had left a letter to his children pointing out the valuable services of Louisa Schepler, and stating that, by the care they took of her, they would show how much attention they paid to the last wish of a father who had always endeavoured to inspire them with feelings of gratitude and benevolence. The appeal was unnecessary. viving family of Oberlin, from the affection which they bore Louisa, determined that she should want for nothing till they themselves were destitute. This excellent person, equally esteemed by M. Rauscher, continued to reside in the parsonage of Waldbach, devoting herself as formerly to acts of benevolence. Her many good qualities becoming known to the trustees of the Monthyon institution at Paris for the reward of virtue, she was awarded by them the prize of 5000 francs-a sum which she wholly devoted to deeds of piety.
Influenced by the friendship and exhortations of Oberlin, there were other women in the Ban de la Roche who, though in poor circumstances, were distinguished for their disinterested benevolence. The following * deserve particular notice :
Sophia Bernard.—This woman, though depending for subsistence on her own labour, and the scanty produce of a morsel of land, resolved in early life to devote herself entirely to the care of orphans; and with this view collected, first under her father's roof, and afterwards in the old parsonage, several children, whose parents were of different denominations, and taught them to spin cotton, in order to assist in their maintenance, which would otherwise have devolved entirely on herself. Before she married, and when her little family already consisted of seven children, she and her sister Madeleine received a letter from a poor tailor, named Thomas, who lived in a neighbouring village, intreating them to take charge of his three little children, all of whom were under four years of age, as his wife was near her confinement, and he was utterly unable to provide for them. This could scarcely be called a justifiable request: following, however, the benevolent impulse of the moment, or rather the dictates of that benevolence by which they were habitually actuated, the two sisters immediately set out, although the evening was already far advanced, and they had dangerous roads to traverse, with their baskets on their backs. At length, regardless of fatigue and exertion, they reached the summit of the mountain upon which Thomas's cottage was situated. Softly approaching it, they peeped in at the window, and were confirmed in the truth of the statement they had received, by the evident marks of wretchedness and poverty that the little apartment exhibited. Upon entering it, they found the little creatures in as forlorn a condition as the poor man had
* Letter from Oberlin in the Appendix to the First Report of the British and Foreign Bible Society.
described ; miserably nursed, and weak and diseased from neglect. They therefore, without further deliberation, wrapped them up in Hannel, packed them in the baskets at their backs, and trudged home with them. But, as their father's house would not accommodate so large an accession to the family, Sophia hired a servant girl, and an additional room, where she fed, clothed, and educated them, so that they became strong, healthy, and ultimately enabled to provide for their own maintenance. A young man, of a generous disposition, made Sophia an offer of marriage; and as she appeared unwilling to accept him, he declared that, if necessary, he would wait ten years to gain her hand. She then acknowledged that her motive for refusing him was the grief it would occasion her to part from her little orphans. “ He who takes the mother takes the children also,” replied the young man.
On this condition the marriage took place; and all the children were brought up under their mutual care in the most excellent manner. They afterwards adopted other orphans, whom they are training up in the fear and love of God. Though these excellent people passed for rather rich, yet their income was so limited, and their benevolence so extensive, that they sometimes hardly knew how to furnish themselves with a new suit of clothes.
Maria Schepler lived at the remotest part of Oberlin's extensive parish, where the cold was more severe, and the ground unfruitful. Nearly all the householders were so poor, that they lent each other clothes, in order that those who attended the communion might make a decent appearance. Though distressed and afflicted in her own person and circumstances, Maria Schepler was a mother, benefactress, and teacher to the village in which she lived, and to some of the neighbouring districts also; bringing up several orphans without the smallest recompense, and keeping a free school for females.
Catherine Scheidecker, a poor widow, was also a mother to orphans, and kept a free school for the children of the hamlet in which she resided. Catherine Banzet was a young woman of a similar character. She voluntarily attended all the neighbouring schools to teach the girls to knit, and, besides, instructed them in other branches of useful knowledge. Who shall estimate the value of the labours of these women, or say how much the poor does for the poor?
It is painful to withdraw ourselves from a contemplation of the character we have been attempting to depict. In laying down the pen, we feel as if a curtain were about to drop between us and the object of our esteem and admiration. But Oberlin, though dead, yet liveth. His person has vanished, but he survives in his actions. How holy, how pure is the remembrance of such a hero! how immeasurably more grand his character
than that of the great men” who usually fill the world's eye, and command the multitude’s gaping applause. His piety, without bigotry; his charity, without ostentation; his self-denial, without penuriousness; his universal loving-kindness; his sincerity, meekness, fortitude, and perseverance; the originality, benevolence, and comprehensiveness of his schemes; not to mention the unusually long and zealous pursuit of his sacred profession-all raise him far above the standard of ordinary men. Devoting himself to labours of the most humble order, he sacrificed a whole lifetime to a sense of public duty. There was in him, as will have been observed, an utter absence of self. · He aimed at no personal glory. What he planned and executed was with an ardent desire to do the work of his great Master, and for the pleasure of doing good. And here lay the remarkable distinction between his character and that of the common class of public benefactors. . In none of his undertakings did he think of or.look for public notice, thanks, or applause. Instead of going about the world announcing his schemes, or parading his deeds, he spent his days within the bosom of a wild mountain-district, going nowhere to seek popularity or reward. Oberlin lived and died a poor man, according to the world's acceptation of poverty, For his wonderful labours he never received the wages of a good mechanic: yet what did he not execute with his scanty resources ! what was the satisfaction of his mind! If riches are to be estimated by the degree of happiness they impart, or by the love which they purchase, Oberlin was the richest of mortals. Beloved by all, he enjoyed in his humble mountain-home pleasures which money cannot buy, and was in effect wealthier than the greatest potentate. If kindness be power, and force weakness-as we firmly believe them, in general circumstances, to be—then was Oberlin also powerful; for he effected by kindness that which even the force of law would inevitably have failed to accomplish. At his death three thousand people wept bitter tears. How few monarchs have received such a tribute of veneration! Nor did his name perish, or enjoy but a questionable fame. From a remote nook of continental Europe the name and fame of Oberlin have gone abroad over all lands. The present little tract will, it is hoped, extend and confirm the reputation of a man so worthy of the world's admiration. May it, however, do more. The fame of the truly great can only be of use when stimulating by example. Let every reader of these pages, therefore, humble, powerless, and penniless as he may be, consider what he can contribute towards the same great cause the cause of social melioration : what personal sacrifices he will make to reclaim the vicious, instruct the ignorant, cheer the disconsolate; what selfishness and bigotries he will relinquish; what meekness, benevolence, justice, and charity, he will exercise; what, in a word, he will do to imitate the cher Papa, the good pastor OBERLIN.
NSIGNIFICANT as the ant may seem, there is no other insect, the honey-bee excepted, whose character and economy have excited so much intelligent curio
sity and research. Nor does this arise from any benefit which it confers, or ravage which it commits; for, generally speaking, its effects are unimportant in either respect. It is the ceaseless activity of the little creature, its
industry, its care for its young, and, above all, its social economy, which have so long attracted human attention, and made one of the tiniest insects the permanent emblem of some of the highest virtues. The sluggard has been sent to the ant to consider her ways, the prodigal to imitate her thrift; the young are told that she gathereth her meat in summer, and the unruly and turbulent have a powerful monitor in the harmony of her busy communities. It is to the more remarkable of these traits that we intend at present to direct attention.
GENERAL CHARACTER AND ECONOMY.
The form of the ant, or emmet, must be so familiar to every one, that anything like a description seems quite unnecessary. Entomologists arrange it under the order Hymenoptera ; * that is,
In systems of natural history, ants form the seventh family of HymeRopterous insects, under the titlé Formicidæ, from the Latin word formicu, ar ant. The genera and species are not well defined, in consequence of the little attention which has as yet been paid to this department of animated nature.