From Elhanan Winchester to George Washington
London August 15. 1791.
Dear and most renowned of men,
I send you with this a sett of my Lectures upon the prophecies that remain to be fulfilled; which I present to you as a small token of that sincere respect which I, among many millions of the human race, feel towards the deliverer of my Country, and the friend of mankind. I have mentioned your name and Character with the highest respect in this work (see vol. IV. page 390) in a connexion that will be no disgrace to your very exalted merit.
It has pleased the Great Supreme, the Sovereign of the Universe, to raise you to the greatest dignity that any Man on earth enjoys at present; the happiness of presiding over a free and united people, the object of their free unbiased Choice. You do not only preside over them, but like him whom you so much resemble, you rule in their hearts, and feel in yourself the sublime pleasure of making a considerable portion of mankind happy.
I believe firmly that the blessed period will at last arrive when the glorious Redeemer shall subdue, humble and restore all his Creatures; when every knee shall bow to him, and every tongue shall swear allegiance to his name and Government and confess him to be Lord, to the Glory of God the Father. When the morning Stars shall sing together, and all the sons of God shall shout for joy! When the Whole Creation shall be delivered from the bondage of Corruption, into the glorious liberty of the Children of God. These are the sentiments which you will find dispersed in the volumes before you; they have been well received in this Country, and I hope will not be altogether unacceptable in my native Land.
May the blessings of God attend you all your days, and when you shall be called to depart from this mortal stage, whereon you have acted such a glorious and conspicuous part, may you have the Approbation of the Great Judge of all, and in the bright and blooming morning of the resurrection be raised in the likeness of your Saviour, and receive from his hand a Crown of righteousness, life, and Glory, which shall never fade away.
This is, Most Respected Sir, the sincere wish, of your most Humble servant – Elhanan Winchester
GREAT man of merit, influence and might,
Enjoy thy country’s honours to the end.
When God Almighty gave creation birth,
And laid the firm foundations of the earth,
Settled the laws which all his works obey,
He saw, and he appointed thee thy sway ;
In that choice land where freedom first arose,
Nor fear’d, nor fell before her numerous foes ;
Gave an example which shall always shine ;
There wast thou born, fair freedom’s land is thine.
On thee hath Heav’n caus’d glory to descend,
Nor will it fail to crown thy happy end.
Preserve, O Lord, a life to man so dear,
Regard that chief, who doth thy laws revere,
Enthron’d within our hearts, he rules by love,
Supremely favour’d by the God above ;
In him, with joy and wonder we behold,
Disinterested love, contempt of gold ;
Engag’d his country’s welfare to pursue,
Now are its highest honours all his due
There let them rest, nor envy dare to view.
Of all his toils, America to raise
Friends of true greatness, all will give him praise.
The wond’rous man who wielded sword and pen,
How great a benefactor he hath been !
Endear’d his name to all his countrymen.
United in himself at once we view,
Nice judgment, prudence, patience, valour too ;
In his fam’d character, at one we find,
Those virtues which are sing’lar in mankind,
Engaging mildness, join’d with martial skill,
Determin’d resolution to fulfill ;
Serious devotion, and benevolence,
Truth, probity, sincerity, good sense ;
Alike prepar’d for closet, cabinet, field,
The same in war or peace, his country’s shield.
Enjoy, O favour’d land ! this blessing lent ;
Such is GEORGE WASHINGTON, your President.
O land of freedom, plenty, happiness,
Forever may the Lord thy dwelling bless :
Newly discover’d land, where freedom reigns,
Over thy hills and vales, and fertile plains,
Revere and love the God who made you free,
That rais’d a Champion for your Liberty,
Happy, O land, in such a Chief as he.
Awake my noblest strains, and hail the day,
My heart is warm, and all my words obey ;
Enchanted, I could dwell upon the song,
Rich with enliv’ning scenes ; a glorious throng !
In that delightful country, we may find
Comely religion with fair freedom join’d,
And every blessing that can bless mankind.