Frederick Douglass letter to British preacher Charles Spurgeon, 1887

800px-Charles_Haddon_Spurgeon_by_Alexander_Melville“The Cross, “St. Neots, ” Hunts.,

“July 6, 1887. ”

Dear Mr. Spurgeon,

“While crossing the Atlantic, last September, and looking out upon its proud dashing billows and their varied forms, and thinking of the diversity in the human family, I remarked that ‘we are many as the waves, but we are one as the sea.’ I had never heard this simile before, and thought it was original with me; but, while reading your sermon, published on the 30th June, I noticed that you said, speaking of the one hundred and nineteenth Psalm, ‘Its expressions are many as the waves, but its testimony is one as the sea.’ I am led to ask,—Is this a coincidence ; or have I, unconsciously, borrowed from you, or have you borrowed this formula from me ?

“Through the kindness of a friend, I had the privilege of listening to you a few Sundays ago. It was the realization of an ardent desire born of reading some of your sermons in America, and of what was said to me of you by my friend, Dr. H. L. Wayland, a gentleman to whom I have been much indebted for friendly sympathy and advice while battling with slavery and prejudice in America. ”

Very truly yours,

“FREDERICK DOUGLASS.”

SOURCE:

(1897), pp. 169-195 – PDF
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