Letter from Theodore Parker

February 3, 1860

Written from Rome, Dec 24, 1859, there are extracts from a letter written to a friend in Boston.   Commenting on news of the execution of Brown:  “Of course I knew, from the moment of his capture, what his fate would be; the logic of slavery is stronger than the intellect or personal will of any man, and it bears all Southern politicians along with it. No martyr whose tragic story is writ in the Christian books ever bore himself more heroically than Capt. Brown; for he was not only a martyr, — any bully can be that, — but also a Saint – which no bully can ever be. ……John Brown came from a lineage; his life proves it – and his death.  It is not for you or me to select the instruments wherewith the providence of mankind has the world’s work done by human hands; it is only for us to do our little duty, and take the good and ill which come of it.”