Page:Henry Adams' History of the United States Vol. 1.djvu/89

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78
Ch. 3.
HISTORY OF THE UNITED STATES.

had been founded in 1783, and every year gave de­grees to an average class of two doctors of medicine. Science had already a firm hold on the college, and a large part of the conservative clergy were dis­tressed by the liberal tendencies which the governing body betrayed. This was no new thing. The col­lege always stood somewhat in advance of society, and never joined heartily in dislike for liberal move­ments; but unfortunately it had been made for an instrument, and had never enjoyed the free use of its powers. Clerical control could not be thrown off, for if the college was compelled to support the clergy, on the other hand the clergy did much to support the college; and without the moral and material aid of this clerical body, which contained several hundred of the most respected and respectable citizens, clad in every town with the authority of spiritual magis­trates, the college would have found itself bankrupt in means and character. The graduates passed from the college to the pulpit, and from the pulpit at­tempted to hold the college, as well as their own congregations, facing toward the past. "Let us guard against the insidious encroachments of innovation," they preached,—"that evil and beguiling spirit which is now stalking to and fro through the earth, seeking whom he may destroy." These words were spoken by Jedediah Morse, a graduate of Yale in 1783, pastor of the church at Charlestown, near Boston, and still known in biographical dictionaries as "the father of American geography." They were contained