Quotation: F.A. van der Kemp on the American Revolution as a model for the Dutch (1782)

In America the Sun of Salvation has risen, which will shine its rays upon us provided we so desire. Only America can revive our Trade and our Shipping…. America provides us again, if we dare look at it, a striking proof of how Righteousness exalteth a nation: but sin is a reproach to any people. America can teach us how to resist the degeneration of National Character, how to check the corruption of morals, how to prevent bribery, how to choke off the seeds of tyranny and restore moribund Liberty to health.

This quotation is an English translation from a passage from François Adriaan van der Kemp’s prayer day sermon of February 1782, which I have already made available in digital format in an earlier blog post. The original passage reads:

In America is de Heilzon opgedaegd, welke ons ook zal bestraelen, indien wy willen: America alleen kan onzen Koophandel, onze Zeevaert doen herleven: America kan onze Fabrieken op nieuw doen bloeijen, en ons LEYDEN herstellen in zynen voorigen luister. America levert ons op nieuw, indien wy ons zelven niet durven beschouwen, een spreekend bewys op, hoe de Gerechtigheid een Volk verhoogt en de Zonde de schandvlek is der Nation. America kan ons leeren, hoe de verbastering van het Volkscharacter tegen te gaen, het bederf der zeden te stuiten, de omkooping te weeren, de zaeden der dwingelandy te verslikken, en de zieltogende Vryheid in gezondheid te herstellen.

I’m highlighting the quotation for a few reasons. First, it gives me a chance to point to the release of the Bloomsbury Encyclopedia of the American Enlightenment, edited by my Brock University colleague Mark Spencer; I authored the article in the Encyclopedia on van der Kemp. Secondly, it also allows me to highlight a good, new dissertation by Peter van Cleave; the translation above is from his work. Finally, this is a preparatory post for another post that I plan to release in the coming days. In that post I will provide some further analysis of the sermon.

For now I will simply provide a list of works that include variations on the quotation: