Dr. Donald of Trinity preached at vespers yesterday afternoon. He made an energetic address, at once fair-minded and brave, concerning the prevalence and the increase of luxury here at Harvard.
To condemn luxury and comfort in a sweeping way he thought senseless and characteristic only of a very shallow thinker. Certainly all the luxury with which Harvard's sons had been lavished, did not abate one whit the patriotic ardor they showed in the late war. When a test came, Harvard men were revealed, not shorn of their manliness, but armed with full strength and vigor.
And yet, said Dr. Donald, that the better men in the university showed themselves strong it was no more than a promise that the inferior men would not show themselves weak. Without dispute, there has ever seemed a connection, more or less vital' between an increase in luxury and a decline in manly strength. What is the reason? If men take the beauty and comfort that are about them an use them to develope themselves, to increase their taste and their refinement, certainly this will not mean a poorer grade of men. However men fail to recognize that they have any responsibility as to the luxury that is theirs, if they take it simply to enjoy it, then it must of coursed diminish the necessity of energy on their part. The less calls for action a man responds to, the less strength he acquires. There is danger in all this luxury, danger that the weaker men will go down before it, but, if we use it like men, then it must help us to become better men.
The choir sang "Let every soul be subject unto the higher powers," J. Stainer; "Ho! Everyone that Thirsteth," Geo. C. Martin; "A New Heaven and a New Earth" from "The Holy City," by A. R. Gaul. Soloist Mr. W. H. Edgerly.