352 POLITICAL SCIENCE.
ruins of a decayed civilization.* Among forms of government
those swayed by will, as despotical monarchy, extreme oli-
garchy, extreme democracy, are not favorable to institutions.
Thus Louis XIV. disliked parliaments and the meetings of
the three estates, as being essentially checks on his power.
In the extreme democracies and oligarchies, in fact, there is
no steadiness, because there are no political habits,; anew
device is tried by the reigning party to secure its own tri-
umph. In larger states of the same kind, the sway of the
majority is the first principle, and any barriers that resist un-
constitutional aggressions, even constitutions, are themselves
thrown down if possible.
Usages and institutions arise and grow within the religious
Religious usages sphere as readily as within the political, and
and institutions, perhaps in the right circumstances grow there
more freely. We refer here not to positive enactments in re-
ligion, like circumcision, baptism, and the Lord's supper, but
to such as develop or support a religion in its practical work-
Ings in a particular direction. An instance of usages extend-
ing far beyond their original limits may be found in the
thanksgiving which has spread over the United States from
New England without any law whatever. Instances of reli-
gious institutions may be found in the order of prophets,
which, although a part of the Jewish system at a very early
date, outgrew its first form, associated itself with schools,
with literature and history; so as to become the most effi-
cient support of religious life in the nation against political
and religious corruptions. The oracle of Apollo at Delphi,
with the temple worship which supplanted earlier shrines,
became allied with politics and with religious festivities, and
was the capital of Greece more than any other spot. The
papacy in its growth as a religious institution is still more
marvellous ; borrowing the prestige of Rome and resting on
* Beaumanoir, in the prologue of his Customs of Beauvoisis, says
that " on ne pourroit trouver &s royaume de France deux chastel-
eries, qui uzassent d'une mesme coustume." I owe this citation to
a French author.