We must not, therefore, contrary to nature, send the bodies, too, of good men to heaven; but we must really believe that, according to their divine nature and law, their virtue and their souls are translated out of men into heroes, out of heroes into demi-gods, out of demi-gods, after passing, as in the rite of initiation, through a final cleansing and sanctification, and so freeing themselves from all that pertains to mortality and sense, are thus, not by human decree, but really and according to right reason, elevated into gods, admitted thus to the greatest and most blessed perfection.
He knows when it is a good year for peas or French beans, and the kind of salad stuff that is plentiful; when the Great Market is glutted with cabbages, he is at once aware of the fact, and the failure of the beetroot crop is brought home to his mind. A slander, old in circulation in Lucien's time, connected the appearance of beef-steaks with a mortality among horseflesh.
It is with the flesh and blood of the daily Sacrifice of our common endurance that he celebrates his strange Mass. Hands that "smell of mortality," lips that "so sweetly were forsworn," eyes that "look their last" on all they love, these are the touches that make us bow down before the final terrible absolution. And it is the same with Nature.
She had left, he learnt, the most decisive direction that no one should be summoned to her funeral: that was so like her brave, sensible nature; she desired the grief for her to be wholesome and temperate grief, with no lingering over the sad accidents of mortality. Hugh felt the strong bond of friendship, that had existed between them, grow and blossom into a vigorous and enduring love.
The vices and diseases introduced among these unhappy people annually swell the ordinary mortality of the islands, while, from the same cause, the originally small number of births is proportionally decreased. Thus the progress of the Hawaiians and Tahitians to utter extinction is accelerated in a sort of compound ratio.
Nevertheless, the thousands of miles of intervening ocean rapidly deprived these of any semblance of authority, and the misery and mortality of the men of Hispaniola continued unabated. Although to a certain extent deserted and discredited, Columbus determined to make one more desperate effort to draw himself clear of the oblivion which was now enveloping him.
Why, then, should I be anxious about the riches or fame of mortality? The Lord our Father will do for us and with us according to Ins Divine will, for our good. "You, O dear Flaxman, are a sublime archangel, my friend and companion from Eternity. In the Divine bosom is our dwelling-place.
It must always, I imagine, sound strange to the ears of a Protestant, to hear nothing but theatrical music on these occasions, and indeed I could never reconcile myself to it; for if we allow any effect to music at all, the train of thought which should inspire us with respect for the dead, and reflections on mortality, is not likely to be produced by the strains in which Dido bewails Eneas, or in which Armida assails the virtue of Rinaldo.
All discipline was at an end; the orders of the officers were disregarded, while their numbers daily decreased by desertion, and by a general mortality, which the piercing cold of a strange climate had produced among them.