when we speak of saviours, we mean those who have endeavoured to enlighten and benefit mankind. But whilst noticing their good qualities we must not overlook their faults, nor place blind faith in every story that human cunning, or human credulity, has affixed to their names.
By the discoveries in steam, and its applications to navigation and other useful arts, man has been enabled to discover many great truths of Nature; but long before the uses of steam were discovered he has learned by navigation many valuable facts. He has proved that the earth is round; and also, that it is entirely suspended in space, and not supported on the backs of elephants or tortoises, or floating on water, as many supposed. But Navigation has done more for him than this—it has opened up to him two great continents hitherto unknown and not anticipated, which are now the resorts of millions from the older and over-populated countries of Europe. Thanks to the enterprise of Columbus, Captain Cook, and other energetic men, the continents of America and Australia are no longer unknown, but are rapidly increasing in population; and the former already contains cities which are the envy of the world; the latter is making rapid strides, and its cities bid fair to become some of greatest in the world. These grand results would never have been brought about had not those mighty minds stepped forward and proclaimed to a bigoted world their heartfelt convictions and total disagreement with the beliefs of the day. Many good men have suffered both persecution and torment that the truth might be found and made known; and we of the present day live to enjoy the fruits of their ardour and perseverance. Surely we should not be ungrateful, and forget the good done to us in the past. We should not be satisfied with the possession of truths that have been made known to us, but should strive with all our energies, to imitate the good example set us, and use our best endeavours to search for truth far and wide, not keeping it selfishly to ourselves, as the miser does his gold, letting it lay by, of no use to anyone, when we have obtained possession of it, but making it known to all; let this be our motto: