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occasion of these fearful rites. And the depravity that must result from them bas not escaped the observation of antiquity. “Etiamsi quando aliquo metu adducti deos placandos esse arbitrantur, humanis hostiis eorum aras ac templa funestant,” says Cicero of the Gauls:1 “ut ne religionem quidem colere possint, nisi eam prius scelere violarint. .... Quamobrem, quali fide, quali pietate existimatis esse eos, qui etiam deos immortales arbitrentur hominum scelere et sanguine facillime posse placari.” Yet as late as after the battle of Cannæ, in Rome itself, his own countrymen had done the same thing. And in that his own age they consecrated the murderous exhibitions of their amphitheatre to the honour of their deities; as soon in the barbarous persecution of Christians they became “ drunken in the blood of the Saints ;” and already in their civil dissensions they had been in that of each other. And in our own memory one of the most civilised nations of Europe has put off humanity, when it put aside the knowledge of God. And Saint Guillotine, canonised by recreant priests, and an apostate people, was but the image of the ensanguined altars of
1 Pro M. Fonteio, s. 10.
idolatry always the same, the modern Moloch, twin brother of the monsters of Indian
superstition. To use the language of Bossuet, 1“ Les sacrifices n'étoient pas particuliers à ces peuples. On sait que dans tous les peuples du monde, sans en excepter aucun, les hommes ont sacrifié leurs semblables ; et il n'y a point eu d'endroit sur la terre, où on n'ait servi de ces tristes et affreuses divinités, dont la haine implacable pour le genre humain exigeait de telles victimes."
1 Sur l'Histoire Universelle.
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