Into Slavery: Racial Decisions in the Virginia Colony

By Joseph Boskin | Go to book overview
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William Crashaw's Sermon, 1610

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...Hereby we shall honour ourselves and strengthen ourselves by propagating our owne religion: hereby we shall mightily advance the honourable name of the English nation, the honor whereof we ought every one to seek: hereby we shall mightily inrich our nation, strengthen our navie, fortifie our kingdome, and be lesse beholding to other nations for their commodities: and to conclude, hereby we shall rectifie and reforme many disorders which in this mightie and populous state are scarce posibly to be reformed without evacuation: and consequentlie when we have atchieved all these ends, we shall eternize our owne names to all ensuing posteritie as being the first beginners of one of the bravest and most excellent exploits that was attempted since the Primitive times of the Church.... Therefore let all nations see, to their amazement, the divels to their terror, the Angels to their joy, and especially Our God to his glorie, and the honor of his truth, that the English Christians will not undertake a publike action which they will not prosecute to perfection. Let us then beleeve no tales, regard no slanders (raised or spred by Papists or Epicures) feare no shadowes, care for no oppositions, respect no losses that may befall, nor bee daunted with any discouragements whatsoever; but goe forward to assist this noble action with countenance and counsell, with men and money, and with continuall supplies, till wee have made our plantation and Colonie able to subsiste of itselfe, and till there be a Church of God established in Virginea, even there where Satans throne is. Thus shall we honour our God, our religion, our Nation, and leave that honour on our names, which shall make them flourish till the worlds end, and (which is all in all) lay up that comfort for our soules which shall stand by us at our deaths, & speake for us to the Great Judge at the last and great day.

And to you (right honourable and beloved) who ingage your lives, and therefore are deepliest interested in this businesse, who make the greatest ventures, and beare the greatest burdens; who leave your ease and pleasures at home, and commit yourselves to the Seas and winds for the good of this enterprise; you that desire to advance the Gospell of Jesus Christ, though it be with the hazard of your lives, goe forward in the name of the God of heaven and earth, the God that keepeth covenant and mercie for thousands; goe on with the blessing of God, Gods Angels and Gods Church; cast away feare, and let nothing daunt your spirits, remembring whom you goe unto, even to the

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From: Alexander Brown, ed., The Genesis of the United States ( New York: Houghton Mifflin Co., 1890), vol. 1, pp. 367-71.

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Into Slavery: Racial Decisions in the Virginia Colony
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