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Full text of "Biography of pious persons"

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BIOGRAPHY 



PIOU8 P£R80NS 



BIOGRAPHY 



OF 



PIOUS PERSONS; 



ABRIDGED FOR YOUTH. 



' Will ihou not from this time cry unto me, My Father, thou art the 
guide of my youth?" — Jeremiah. 



MERRIAM, LITTLE AND CO. 

183 2. 



Entered according to the act of Congress, in the year 
1S32, by Merriam, Little & Co. in the Clerk's Office 
of the District Court of Massachusetts. 



PREFACE. 



The individuals whose biographies are 
here selected and condensed, resided in dif- 
ferent parts of Europe and America, and 
occupied a space of time nearly equal to three 
centuries. They were of both sexes, and of 
every date, from the bloom of childhood, to 
the decrepitude of age. They exhibited va- 
rieties of intellect, attainment, profession, and 
doctrinal belief. Some were scarcely known 
beyond the narrow sphere of domestic duty, — 
others became illustrious throughout distant 
climes, as poets, philosophers, physicians, 
civilians or divines. They were also diversi- 
fied by every grade of rank and station, from 
the obscurity of the humble householder, to 
the pomp of nobility, and the splendor of a 
throne. 

Vet amidst all this contrast of structure and 
circmnstancc, a pervading principle of unifor- 
mity may be discovered. One possession 
was connnon to all, whether in poverty or 
wealth. Tliey were sustained under adver- 
sity, and guarded in prosperity, by the same 



IV PREFACE. 

invisible Hand. From one source, both the 
favorite of genius, and the child of ignorance, 
derived knowledge ; that knowledge of man's 
infirmity, and of God's mercy, which "maketh 
wise unto salvation." However differently 
they might seem arrayed to the eye of the 
world, it was the armor of true piety which 
shielded them in misfortime, and gave them 
victory over temptation. It was the steadfast 
faith of the Christian, which took from the 
ills of life their power to hurt the soul ; — it 
was the " hope full of glory," that gave a 
smile to death, either amid the terrors of a 
scaffold, — or the protracted agonies of disease. 

To those who may contemplate these ex- 
amples, the question is submitted, whether 
that religion is not worthy of persevering- 
search, of ardent prayer, — which can render 
the illusions of prosperity harmless, and the 
pains of sorrow salutary, — make life's pilgrim- 
age a scene of virtue, and beautify death as 
an angel of repose, — exchange the coveted 
and perishing goods of time for an eternal 
heritage in the heavens 1 And to the young, 
— to whose perusal these pages are particu- 
larly and affectionately dedicated, — do they 
not offer additional inducements to "remem- 
ber their Creator," ere the period of that 
promise shall expire, " those that seek me 
early shall find me ?" 

Hartford, Conn., January, 1832. 



INDEX, 

Chronologically arranged. 

— ^O©— 

Year of Birth. Page. 

1. Catharine Parr, last Queen of Henry the 

Eighth of England, 1509. 9 

2. Jane, Q,ucen of Navarre, 1528. 16 

3. Lady Jane Grey, 1536. 22 

4. Philip de Mornay, Lord du Plessis, . . . 1549, 32 

5. Sir Francis Bacon, ........ 1561. 35 

6. John Milton, 1608. 41 

7. Sir Matthew Hale, - . 1609. 52 

8. Rev. Rowland Nevit, 1609. 59 

9. Rev. Francis Tallents, 1609. 61 

10. Rev. Samuel Stone, 1610. 65 

11. Blaise Pascal, 1623. 70 

12. Countess of Suffolk, 1627. 74 

13. Countess of Warwick 1630. 81 

14. Rev. Philip Henry, 1631. 89 

15. Susanna Bicks 1650. 117 

16. Fenelon, Archbishop of Cambray, . . .1651. 130 

17. Rev. Christopher Love, 1651. 139 

18. Jacob Bicks, 1657. 142 

19. Marquis of Argylc, 1661. 145 

20. Rev. Samuel Lawrence, 1661. 147 

21. Rev. Matthew Henry, 1662. 109 

22. Mary, duccn of Great Britain, Consort of 
William Third, 1662. .151 



VI INDEX. 

Mar of Birth. Page. 

23. John Harvey, • . 1664. 164 

24. Dr. Herman Boerhaave, 16G8. 168 

25. Dr. Samuel Benion, 1673. 175 

26. Mrs. Elizabeth Rowc, 1674. 187 

27. Lady Mary Vere, 1680- 198 

28. Col. James Gardiner, . ...... 1688. 202 

29. Rev. Jonathan Edwards, 1703. 206 

30. Dr. Samuel Johnson 1709. 221 

31. Rev. George Wliitefield, 1714. 230 

32. Rev. Samuel Bueli, 1716. 243 

33. William Cowper, Esq • . .1731. 248 

34. Dr. James Beattie 1735. 252 

35. Rev. Samuel Stillman, 1737. 265 

36. Rev. Jonathan Edwards, 2d, 1745. 268 

37. Sir Wilham Jones, ........ 1746. 276 

38. Hon. Samuel Osgood, 1748. 282 

39. Eliza Cunningham, 1771. 285 

40. Joshua Rowley Gilpin, ...'... 1788. 300 



BIOGRAPHY, &c. 



CATHARINE PARR, 

last queen of king henry the eighthj of 
eKgland. 



Her birth was in the year 1509, the 
1609. beginning of the reign of the monarch 
who was afterwards her husband. Her 
fathec, Sir Tlionias Parr, gave her a learned edu- 
cation, and her progress was fully answerable to her 
uncommon advantages. But with all her endow- 
ments, she seemed less solicitous to shine than 
to serve her fellow-creatures, and to please her 
God ; and in every stage of life consecrated her 
talents and accomplishments to the best and M'isest 
purposes. Very early in life she was married to 
John Neville, Lord Latimer, and after his decease 
the beauties of her person, and charms of her mind, 
so captivated the changeable king Henry the 
Eighth, that he induced her to become his wife, on 
the 12th of July, 1643. 

She was now in a situation to do extensive good, 
and industriously availed herself of every opportu- 
nity, either to relieve the distressed, espouse the 
1 



10 BIOGRAPHY OF PIOUS PERSONS. 

cause of the injured, or soften the asperities of her 
irritable consort. Piety preserved her pure from 
the vanities of a court, and in prayer her affections 
continually ascended upward. From infancy her 
mind had received deep religious impressions, and 
her matured reason rejected the errors of a Popish 
education, and embraced the Protestant faith. 
This creed exposed her to many persecutions from 
her enemies, and more than once her life was en- 
dangered by their influence over the mind of her 
husband. 

Bishop Gardiner, a fiery Popish zealot, with 
much art persuaded the king to sign a warrant for 
her commitment to the Tower, but this instru- 
ment, being accidentally dropped, was conveyed to 
Catharine, who was so deeply affected with such 
base ingratitude, and the hard condition of female 
royalty, that she was thrown into a severe fit of 
sickness. Henry visited her in her sufferings, and 
the wavering flame of his affection was rekindled. 
Soon after he was himself ill, and during her care- 
ful attendance upon him, he endeavored to draw 
from her an avowal of what he suspected were her 
articles of belief; but she knowing his bigoted 
attachment to Popery, and that an acknowledgment 
of her principles would inflame him to madness, 
and perhaps overwhelm many with herself, express- 
ed her opinions with such prudence, caution, and 
delicacy, as soothed his temper, though without re- 
moving his suspicions, and drew from him the stron- 
gest assurances of reconciliation and love. 

But the fury of the conspirators did not abate, and 
when the time specified in the warrant for her im- 
prisonment had arrived, (hey again renewed their 



CATHARINE PARR. 11 

efforts, thirsting for innocent blood. She had gone 
to walk in the garden with some ladies who shared 
her intimacy, and who being suspected of agreeing 
with her in the Protestant faith, were secretly ap- 
pointed to share her imprisonment. The King 
joined them in their walk : the conversation became 
sprightly and interesting, and he began to realize 
what his heart was always susceptible of — the force 
of female attraction. Suddenly forty of the guards 
appeared, led on by the Lord High Chancellor, 
when Henry, giving him a stem look, in the most 
passionate and contemptuous expressions bade him 
to depart instantly Trom his presence. 

The Queen, observing him to be much embar- 
rassed, said with great sweetness and in a supplicating 
tone of voice, "I pray your Majesty, if the fault of the 
Chancellor be not too heinous, that you would par- 
don him for my sake." Henry, abashed at her 
goodness, and the remembrance of his fault, stood 
silent, while she repeatedly entreated, "for my sake 
— for my sake." — At length he hinted to her that 
his design was to have imprisoned, and perhaps 
executed her ; but when he saw her still persist in 
benevolent entreaties for his pardon, he was so pow- 
erfully struck with her forgiving piety, that his mind, 
usually wavering and inconstant, never forgot the 
impression, or would admit any accusation against 
the Queen. 

Thus miraculously did divine Providence defeat 
the malice and snares of her enemies ; and this 
imminent danger was rendered salutary to her soul, 
by exciting it to new fervency in prayer, and quick- 
ening its preparation for eternity. Such was the 
visible answer of (lod to her petitions, and to such 



l^ BIOGRAPHY OF PIOUS PERSONS. 

a degree were the affections of the monarch rivetted 
upon her, that after the failure of Gardiner's cruel 
plan, her enemies, though they wished it, never dared 
to make a similar attempt. She still continued to 
search the Scriptures, and to converse with her chap- 
lains on the doctrines of the Reformation, and had 
a Sermon preached in her chamber every day. She 
procured an able translation of Erasmus' Paraphrase 
of the New Testament into English, for the instruc- 
tion of the common people, and the cost of this 
expensive work she defrayed entirely from her own 
resources. During the time of ^er continuance as 
queen, notwithstanding her many and peculiar avo- 
cations, she wrote much on religious subjects. 
Some of these papers were published during her 
life, and others after her death. 

Her first printed composition, was one in which 
she acknowledged the religious errors of the early 
part of her life, when she relied on external perfor- 
mances, ignorant of that internal power of religion, 
which had afterwards been granted to her humble 
and persevering prayers. All her manuscripts ex- 
hibit a true spirit of devotion, and a deep sense of 
dependance upon God, and prove how much of her 
time and thoughts, amid the pomps and ceremonies 
of her station, were devoted to the concerns of her 
soul, and the dissemination of piety and virtue among 
her people. 

She considered useful learning, as favorable to 
the interests of religion, and used constant endeav- 
ors to extend and promote it. So much was she 
considered the patroness of literature, and such was 
her supposed influence over the king, that when the 



CATHARINE PARR. 13 

University of Cambridge was alarmed at the pas- 
sing of an act which declared all the Colleges at his 
Majesty's disposal, the principal heads and dignita- 
ries addressed a letter to her, entreating her to inter- 
cede that their privileges might not be abridged. 

In her reply, after signifying that his Majesty had 
granted her intercessions in their behalf — she adds 
— " I doubt not, your daily invocations will be offered 
up to Him who alone disposeth of every creature, 
for the preservation and prosperity of your royal 
benefactor." After commending the flourishing state 
of literature at Cambridge, she exhorts them "not 
so to hunger for the exquisite knowledge of profane 
learning," as to neglect the simplicity of the doctrines 
of Christ. She concludes this excellent letter — "I 
am taught to say by St. Paul — 'I am not ashamed 
of the gospel of Christ ;' to the sincere setting forth 
of which, I trust you will conform your various gifts 
and studies, that Cambridge may be accounted an 
University, not only of moral and natural, but of 
divine Philosophy." 

Next to the duties of devotion, and the study of 
the scriptures, it was the care of this excellent woman 
to perform her duty to the king. Perhaps no one 
but herself could so well have executed that ardu- 
ous task. The ill health that was his constant por- 
tionduringhercontinuance with him, added fierceness 
to his harsh and intractable disposition, and though 
his principal favorites suffered severely from liis 
caprice and passion, the amiable qualities of his con- 
sort, her gentleness, tenderness, and charms of 
conversation, alleviated his pains, and fixed his 
mutable affections. His death took place, three 
years and a half after she became his wife, and she 
1* 



14 BIOGRAPHY OF PIOUS PERSONS. 

was again married to Sir Thomas Seymour, Lord 
High Admiral of England. The harshness and 
ambition of her second husband, and the unexam- 
pled pride of some of his family, embittered her 
days, and hastened their decline. In the month of 
September, 1548, she passsed where "the wicked 
cease from troubling, and the weary are at rest." 

To this little sketch of her character I add part 
of one of her prayers, which these narrow limits 
compel me reluctantly to abridge ; — 

"Most benign Lord Jesus ! Grant me thy grace 
always to work in me, and persevere with me unto 
the end. Let me have no desire to will, or not to 
will, but as thou wilt : for thou Lord knowest what 
is most profitable and expedient for me. Give me 
therefore what thou wilt : — as much as thou wilt ; — 
and when thou wilt. I pray thee, gi-ant me thy 
grace, that I may never set my heart on the things 
of this world, but that all carnal and worldly affec- 
tions may utterly die, and be mortified in me. For 
thou, Lord, art the very true peace of my heart, 
and perfect rest of my soul, and without thee all 
things are grievous and unquiet. 

I beseech thee, be with me in every place, and at 
all times ; yet if thou withdraw thy comfort from 
me at any time, keep me, O Lord, from desperation, 
and make me patiently to bear thy will. If thou 
wilt that I be in light, be thou blessed : — if thou wilt 
that I lie in trouble, and without comfOrt, be thou 
likewise blessed. Keep me. Lord, from sin, and 
then I shall dread neither death or hell. Oh ! what 
thanks shall I give unto thee, who hast suffered the 
grievous death of the cross, to deliver me from my 
sins, and to obtain everlasting life for me ? Thou 



CATHARINE PARR. 15 

gavest us the most perfect example of patience, 
fulfilling and obeying the will of thy Father even 
unto death. Make me, wretched sinner, obediently 
to order myself after thy will in all things, and 
patiently to bear the burden of this corrupt life. 
For though it be tedious, and as an heavy burden 
to my soul, yet nevertheless through thy grace and 
example, it is made much more easy and comforta- 
ble. Thy holy lile is our way to thee, and by follow- 
ing that, we walk to Thee our head and Saviour. 

Except thou hadst gone before, and showed us 
the way to everlasting life, who would endeavor of 
himself to follow thee, seeing we are yet so slow 
and dull, having the light of thy blessed example and 
holy doctrine to lead and direct us ? Lord Jesus, 
makc.that possible by grace, which is to me impos- 
sible by nature. Thou knowest well that I can 
sufier little, that I am soon cast down and over- 
thrown with a little adversity : wherefore I beseech 
thee, O Jjord, to strengthen me with thy Spirit, that 
I may willingly suffer for thy sake all manner of 
troubles and afflictions." 



JAJTE, Q,UEEX OF XAVARRE. 



She was the daughter of Henry Second, King 
of Navarre, and Mai^aret of Orleans, 

1528. sister of the celebrated Francis First, 
of France. She was married to Antho- 
ny, of Bourbon, son of the Duke of Vendome, 
and the mother of Henry the Great, fourth king 
of France and Navarre. Early initiated by her 
parents in the truths of the Protestant religion, 
she became a firm adherent to them, in times 
of distressing bigotry and persecution. The 
leading French papists, finding her firm against 
their insinuations, endeavored to detach her hus- 
band from the Protestant interest, and so far was 
he duped by their artifices, as to solicit his queen to 
return with him to the bosom of the Romish Church, 
and on her refusal, withdrew from her his affections 
and his confidence. She therefore retired to Po- 
diani, in the country of Berne, where she kept her 
diminished court, and enjoyed the consolations of 
her religion. 

Soon after, she became a widow, for the King 
of Navarre was mortally wounded in the shoulder, at 
the siege of Orleans. The Catholic faction imme- 
diately attempted to seize the queen with her son 
and daughter, and bring them before the Spanish 



JANE, QUEEN OP NAVARRE. 17 

Inquisition. But this cruel design was frustrated 
by a signal interposition of that Almighty Being, 
who preserves those whose tnist is in his mercy, and 
whose prayers continually ascend before his throne. 
Persecutions of the Protestants now commenced 
with the greatest fury, and fountains of innocent 
blood were seen to flow. 

In the third civil war, the queen of Navarre find- 
ing every pacific proposal rejected, advanced with 
considerable force to Rochelle. After the first 
unfortunate battle, where the prince of Condi^ was 
slain, she gathered the scattered remains of the 
Protestant army, and animated a great assembly 
of nobles and soldiers, by the spirit of her eloquence. 
She applauded the piety and constancy of the fallen 
hero, and called upon all who heard her to imitate 
his example, and to persevere in supporting the 
cause of Christ, and the liberties *of their country. 
" For the good cause, said she, is not dead with 
the Prince of Conde, neither ought worthy men in 
such losses to yield to despondency. God having 
so provided for his cause, that he gave Conde a com- 
panion while he hved, who may succeed him now 
he is no more. I have brought with me, my only 
son Heniy, who being the heir of Conde's name 
is heir also of his virtues." 

After striving to inspirit her nobles, and giving 
the young prince much private counsel and admo- 
nition, she returned to Rochelle to raise new rein- 
forcements. But misfortune still attended her arms; 
the countries of Berne and Foox were reduced, 
and the Papists laid furious siege to Navarre, the 
only place of strength that remained. It was then 
found that the humble prayers of the saints, " were 



18 BIOGRAPHY OF PIOUS PERSONS. 

mighty through God to the pulling down of strong 
holds, and to the easting down of every high thing 
that exalteth itself." A victory, unexpected, £ind 
almost miraculous, was given to the persecuted 
saints, and the enemy retreated with disgrace, re- 
signing the conquered territory, and offering condi- 
tions of peace. To confirm the treaty still more 
effectually, they proposed a marriage between the 
young Prince Henry, and the sister of the king 
of France. The Queen of Navarre objected, on 
account of their different religious belief, — but her 
remonstrances were overruled by the argument, 
that it would establish peace on a more permanent 
basis, and stop the effusion of blood. 

She improved the little interval of quiet which 
attended this negotiation, in disseminating the 
principles of the reformed religion among her 
subjects. She sent a number of pastors into the 
neglected province of Cantabria, and translated 
into their dialect, the New Testament, Catechism, 
and prayers used in the church at Geneva. While 
she was employing herself in these pious designs, 
the French King sent dispatches to her, insisting 
that the proposed nuptials should be celebrated at 
Paris. To this she assented reluctantly, and in 
the spring of 1672, left her hereditary dominions 
with her children and retinue. She was observed 
to depart with regret ; — but she went " as a bird to 
the snare of the fowler, — not knowing that it was 
for her life." 

The festivity attending the marriage of her son, 
was chosen by the inhuman Papists, as the signal 
of the massacre of the unsuspecting Protestants, 
and so secretly was this abominable plot laid, and so 



JANE, QUEEN OF NAVARRE. 19 

unprovided were they for defence, that on the 24th 
of August, 30,000 of them were butchered without 
regard to age or sex. The French queen dowager, 
one of the principal instigators, fearing that Jane 
might escape the massacre, and dreading the effects 
of the greatness of her spirit should she survive, 
resolved to make sure this victim. Two months 
previous to the intended massacre, while all wore 
the appearance of satisfaction and joy, she engaged 
an Italian >vretch, of the name of Rene, to sell to 
the innocent Queen of Navarre, some perfume, 
mingled with the most subtile, and powerful poison. 
She was immediately thrown into a lingering and 
excruciating fever, which she perceived must termi- 
nate in death. With dignified composure, with 
profound solemnity, she prepared her soul for the 
approaching event. Calling her son Henry to her 
couch, she gave him much excellent advice, and 
among other things said, — " I enjoin you above all, 
carefully to serve God in the religion in which you 
have been educated, and not to suffer your soul to 
be diverted by the empty pleasures and delights 
of this world. Inviolably preserve the constitutions 
which have been given respecting it, in the princi- 
palities of Berne, and the lower Navarre. Purge 
your family of all irreligious counsellors, vicious 
persons, and flatterers, the abusers of princes. 
Take a tender care of your sister Catharine, and 
give her an education in the same school of piety 
where you have received your own." 

After appointing him her heir, and entreating 
the King of France to be the protectgr of her 
orphan children, and allow them the free exercise 
of their religion, she requested tliat she might have 



20 BIOGRAPHY OF PIOUS PERSONS. 

suitable persons around her, to pray with her, 
and administer consolation to her departing soul. 
*' I take all this," said she, " as sent from the hands 
of my most merciful Father. Nor have I during this 
extremity been afraid to die ; much less have I 
murmured against this chastisement, knowing that 
whatsoever God does shall in the end turn to my 
everlasting good. As for this life, I am in a good 
measure weaned from it, by the afflictions which 
have followed me from my youth to the present 
hour ; but especially because I cannot live without 
offending my God, with whom I desire to be with 
all my heart." 

Her minister requested her to pray, that if it were 
the will of God she might be longer employed in 
his service upon earth. She replied, " For myself 
this sinful life is not dear, but I have a concern for 
the children whom God has given me, and if I were 
now to die they would be left alone in their early 
years. Yet, I doubt not, if he were to see fit to 
take me from them, he himself will be a Father and 
Protector for them, as he has ever been to nje in 
my greatest afflictions : and therefore I commit 
them wholly to his government, and fatherly care. 
Death is not terrible to me, because it is the way 
to pass to eternal rest." Then with her hands and 
eyes lifted up to heq,ven, she said in the voice of 
prayer, " my sins which I have committed against 
the Lord are innumerable, and more than I can 
recount ; yet I hope that God, for Christ's sake, 
in whom I put my whole trust, will be merciful to 
me." 

The steadiness of her faith imparted a cheerful 
serenity to her countenance ; and her pains, though 



JANE, QUEEN OF NAVARRE. 21 

very severe, never extorted from her an impatient 
word, or scarcely a groan. Often amidst edifying 
discourse, she was heard to utter in prayer, " O my 
(jrod, in thy due time deliver me from the body of 
this death, and from tlie miseries of this present 
life, that I may no more offend thee, and that I may 
attain to that felicity which thou in thy word hast 
promised to bestow upon tne." Seeing her ladies 
weeping round her bed, ^he said, " I pray you do 
not weep for me, since God by this sickness calls 
me to the enjoyment of a better life ; and now I 
am about to enter the desired haven towards which 
my frail vessel has been so long steering." Just as 
she was expiring, one of her ministers said, " Are you 
now willing to go ?" " Yes, I assure you," she an 
.swered, "much more willing than to linger here below 
in tliis world where I see nothing but vanity," and 
thus sweetly yielded up her breath, June 9th, 1572, 
in the 44th year of her age. " Queen Jane of 
Navarre, says Bishop Burnet, reformed not only 
her court, but her whole principality ; and to such 
a degree that the golden age seemed to have return- 
ed under her, or rather Christianity appeared again 
in its primitive purity and lustre. Her dominions 
were so narrow, that though she had the rank and 
dominion of queen, it was like sovereignty in min- 
iature ; though the colors were light, it was of the 
.smallest form." 



LADY JAXE GREY. 



Lady Jane Grey, the daughter of Henry, Mar- 
quis of Dorset, and Lady Frances Brandon, grand 
daughter of Ilenry Seventh, was bom 
1536. in the year 1636. Her attractions began 
early to display themselves ; for to beau- 
ty of person she united many accomplishments — el- 
egance in the performances of the needle and pen, 
skill in vocal and instrumental music, gracefulness 
of deportment, and an inexpressible charm of con- 
versation. Still she aspired to acquisitions of great- 
er solidity, and having obtained such a knowledge 
of her own language as to speak and write with pe- 
culiar accuracy, she acquired the French, Italian, 
Latin, Greek, Hebrew, Chaldee and Arabic. These 
she studied so thoroughly as to render them perfect- 
ly familiar, and it is asserted on the authority of the 
most learned men of that period, that she wrote in 
each with facility. This great mass of knowledge 
was secured in childhood and early youth ; and so 
far was she from vanity or self conceit, that she 
mingled all her attainments with modesty, humility, 
and piety. 

Yet though the sweetness and gentleness of her 
demeanour attracted universal admiration, it is an 
unaccountable fact, that she was treated by her pa- 



LADY JANE GREY. 23 

rents with cold and stern severity. This led her to 
seek for happiness in the retirement of intellectual 
pursuits ; and depressed by the unmerited chidings 
of her parents, she returned with double pleasure to 
the lessons of her beloved tutor, Aylmere, whose 
gentleness was as a cordial to her spirit, crushed by 
unnatural austerity. Yet her otvn reflecting mind 
perceived that this trial had been sanctified to her 
improvement, and she said cheerfully to a friend, 
" One of the greatest benefits that God ever gave 
me, was to send me such sharp and severe parents, 
and so gentle a schoolmaster." This was also one 
of the first incentives to that fervent and uniform pi- 
ety, which was so early observable in her ; for check- 
ed in the natural effusions of a susceptible heart, 
and chilled with rigors, where her first confidence 
sought to repose itself, she found Him who comfort- 
eth the mourner, and raiseth up the spirits that are 
cast down. 

Childhood, which is so often devoted to vanity, 
was in her case marked with piety, and while her 
daily devotions comforted and strengthened her, 
they gained a visible blessing upon her pursuits, 
studies and attainments. Her parentage, and situ- 
ation in life, sometimes required her attendance at 
court, where her conversation, accomplishments 
and humility, strongly awakened the admiration and 
esteem of the young King Edward, who was him- 
self a conspicuous example of virtue, learning and 
piety. Soon after, her father was created Duke of 
Suffolk, and the father of her future husband was 
made Duke of Northumberland. She was married 
to the young liord Otiilford Dudley, May, 1553, at 
the age of 16, and the King, who requested that the 



24 BIOGRAPHV OF PIOUS PERSONS. 

nuptials might be celebrated with great pomp, con- 
tributed liberally to their expenses from the royal 
treasuiy. But the magnificence and splendor of 
this scene was the last gleam of joy that shone in 
the palace of King Edward. His decline increas- 
ed — he withered and decayed like some feeble 
and beautiful plantt until the 6th of July, 1553, 
when he expired, beloved and lamented. Religion 
had long been his guide and his consolation, and in 
the hours of his last suffering, its interests were pe- 
culiarly dear. He knew his sister Mary to be a 
bigoted Roman Catholic, he feared that the Protest- 
ant religion which he had fostered she would crush 
in its infancy, and trembled with a prophetic spirit, 
at the persecutions that would rage, and the blood 
that must flow if she should be seated on his throne. 
He was led to meditate on Lady Jane, as his suc- 
cessor, and the strong solicitations of the Duke of 
Northumberland, so seconded his own choice, that 
one of the last acts of his life was to authorize a 
deed of settlement, signed by himself and all the 
Lords of the Council, in which Lady Jane Grey 
was declared the rightful heir to the crown and scep- 
tre of England. Of this she knew nothing, until 
her father, and father-in-law entered Durham Cas- 
tle, and informed her of her exaltation, and while 
she struggled with astonishment and terror, they, fal- 
ling on their knees, paid her homage as queen. As 
soon as she could express herself audibly she en- 
treated them not to persist in their design, or for a 
moment indulge a thought of trespassing on the 
rights of Mary and Elizabeth. " Shall I scruple, 
said she, at the stealing of a shilling, and not at the 
usurpation of the crown ? Or shall I accept a crown 



LADY JANE GREY. 25 

violently \vrestecl from Catharine of Arragon, and 
made more unfortunate by the punishment of Ann 
Boleyn and others that wore it after her ? Why 
will you have me add my blood to theirs, and be the 
third victim from whom that fatal thing has been 
Avfested, with the head that wore it ? Rather if you 
love me sincerely, and so earnestly as you say, let 
me remain in a secure and quiet condition, and not 
force me into such an exalted situation, so exposed 
to the wind, and so likely to be followed by some 
dismal fall.'' 

But her arguments were disregarded, and her en- 
treaties silenced by the Duke of Northumberland, 
who assured her that all was done according to law, 
and the wishes of the people ; by the commands of 
her father, to which she had ever been accustomed 
to submit ; by the tears and intercessions of her 
mother, and the ardent entreaties of her husband, 
whom she loved tenderly, and by whom she was 
equally beloved. Finding herself unable to resist, 
with a reluctant and heavy heart she suffered her- 
self to be conveyed to the Tower, where she was 
immediately proclaimed, and arrayed with the in- 
signia of royalty. But short indeed, was the date 
of her sovereignty ; on the morning of the tenth 
day commenced the reign of Queen Mary, announ- 
ced by a proclamation in London. The Duke of 
Suffolk, entering her apartment with a disturbed air, 
and a faultering tone, imparted the intelligence, but 
she received it with a serene and composed counte- 
nance, and answered that the message was far less 
painful than her advancement to royalty ; that from 
obedience to him she had done violence to herself 
and deeply sinned, and would now gladly make all 
2* 



26 BIOGRAPHY OF PIOUS PERSONS. 

possible reparation for the error she had conimitled. 

But immediately after her relinquishment of roy- 
alty, her gentle heart was doomed to bleed at the 
sight of suflerings which she had innocently caus- 
ed. Mary, incensed and vindictive, threw into close 
confiinen)ent the Dukes of Suffolk, and aSorthum- 
berland, and brought the latter to the block. The 
whole family of ]N orthumberland suffered the pains 
of imprisonment, and thither Lady Jane and ^er 
husband after their trial were brought, under sen- 
tence of death. This amiable lady has hitherto fur- 
nished us with proof of uncommon intellectual ex- 
cellence and exhibited a sensibility and gentleness, 
which it is impossible- not to adtnire. She will now 
display to us her fortitude — greatness of soul — con- 
scious rectitude — and inspiring piety, which, break- 
ing forth with brighter lustre, shed unfading radiance 
upon her closing days. Neither repining, grief or 
dejection, sat upon her countenance : no murmur 
escaped her lips that she must thus be torn Irom 
life and all its enjoyments. 

She wi-ote to her father during her imprisonment, 
that she was not only reconciled to the approaching 
event, but thankful for it ; that however painful it 
might appear to him, nothing to her could be more 
welcome, than from this vale of misery to aspire to 
a seat with her Saviour, and she prayed that he 
might be so divinely preserved in the faith of Jesus, 
that theymight meet in heaven at last. She spent her 
imprisonment in acts of piety and devotion, though 
much interrupted by the officiousness of the Popish 
priests, who were continually sent by Queen IVlary, 
to endeavor to convert her to their faith. These 
found her belief steadfast, and her arguments unan- 



LADV JANE GREY. 27 

swerablc, and having heard that one of her former 
preceptors had changed his faith, through fear of 
persecution, she addressed to him a most excellent 
and convincing letter. Towards the conclusion she 
says — " Come home again like Mary ; and with Pe- 
ter bitterly weep. As, with the lost son you have 
wandered, be not ashamed with him to return from 
the riot of strangers, acknowledging that you have 
sinned against Heaven and Earth : agmnst one by 
staining the glorious name of God ; against the 
other by becoming a stumbling block to your weak 
brethren." 

To her sister, the night before her death, she 
wrote a long and valuable letter at the end of a 
Greek Testament, which she sent her as the last me- 
morial of her friendship and affection. " As to my 
death, good sister, rejoice as I do, that I shall be 
delivered from this corruption, and put on incorrup- 
tion ; for I am as-<ured that by losing a mortal I 
shall gain immortal life, which I pray God to grant 
you, and send you grace to live in his fear, and to 
die in the true Christian faith, from which in God's 
name, I exhort you never to swen'e, either for hope 
of Hfe, or fear of death." 

The day appointed for the execution of the two 
innocent victims was February 12th, 1654. When 
the fatal morning arrived, Lord Guilford Dudley 
earnestly besought the officers for liberty to take a 
last farewell of his beautiful and beloved consort. 
This was readily granted, but on being notified to 
her, she thought it inexpedient, and collecting the 
whole force of her mind endeavored to dissuade 
him from his purpose. " Such a meeting," she sent 
him an answer," would only add to your afflictions, 



28 BIOGRAPHY OF PIOUS PERSONS. 

and disturb the quiet with which we ought to arm 
our souls for the stroke of death. You demand a 
lenitive which will inflame the wound ; for I fear my 
presence will rather weaken than strengthen you. — 
If your soul is not now firm and composed, I can 
neither settle it with my eyes, or confirm it with my 
words. Defer then this interview, until a few mo- 
ments are past, and then we meet in another world. 
There indeed, friendships will be happy, and unions 
indissoluble, and ours doubtless will be eternal, if 
vve carry nothing terrestrial with us to hinder our re- 
joicing." 

When she saw her husband led out to execution, 
she involuntarily testified great emotion, but soon 
overcame it by reflecting how soon she should fol- 
low him, and giving him her farewell from the win- 
dow, composed herself for the approaching solem- 
nity, lie suffered on the scaffold with much Chris- 
tian meekness ; and his streaming body laid upon a 
car, and his severed head wrapt in a linen cloth, in 
a few minutes after, passed under her window. She 
beheld this shocking spectacle with a composed 
countenance, and immediately wrote in her table 
book three sentences in Latin, Greek and English. 
This book she presented to Sir John Bridges, Lieu- 
tenant of the Tower, as a grateful acknowledgment 
of his kindness during her imprisonment. The 
Greek sentence was, ■" If this slain body shall give 
sentence against me before men, his most blessed 
soul shall render eternal proof of my innocence in 
the presence of God." The Latin, " The justice 
of man destroyed his body ; but the mercy of God 
has preserved his soul." The English, " If my 
fault deserved this punishment, my youth and my 



LADY JANE GREV. 29 

imprudence admit at least of excuse. God and pos- 
terity will show me favor." 

She proceeded to the scaffold with a serene and 
sweet countenance, fixuig her eyes upon a book of 
prayers, and paying little atttention to the discourses 
of the Popist priest who followed her. She addres- 
sed a short speech to the people who surrounded 
her, kneeled dowTi and repeated the 51st Psalm in a 
most devout manner, mildly gave her forgiveness to 
the executioner, who kneeling entreated it, suffered 
herself to be disrobed by her women, and laying 
her head upon the block said, " Lord, into thine 
hands I commend my spirit." Thus perished this 
amiable being at the age of seventeen. Among 
her devotional papers Ls found a prayer, written in 
the time of her adversity, with some extracts of 
which I close this imperfect account of a most in- 
teresting and admirable character. 

" O Lord, thou God and Father of my life ! hear 
me, a poor and desolate woman, who fly to thee 
alone in all troubles and miseries. Thou, Lord, 
art the only defender and deliverer of those who put 
their trust in thee : and therefore I, being defiled 
with sin, encumbered with afflictions, disquieted 
with troubles, wrapped in cares, overwhelmed with 
miseries, and grievously tormented with long im- 
prisonment in this vile body of clay, do come unto 
thee, merciful Saviour, craving thy mercy and help, 
Mrithout which so little hope of deliverance is left, 
that I may utterly despair. Although it is expedi- 
ent that we should be visited with adversity, where- 
by we may both be tried whether we be of thy flock 
or not, and also know thee and ourselves better, yet 
thou who saidst thou wouldst not suffer us to be 



30 BIOGRAPHY OF PIOUS PERSONS. 

tempted above our power, be merciful unto me, a 
miserable creature. 

I beseech thee, that I may neither be too much 
lifted up with prosperity, or too much pressed down 
with adversity. O merciful God, consider my mis- 
ery, best known to thee, and be thou now to me a 
strong tower of defence, 1 humbly entreat thee. Suf- 
fer me not to be tempted above my power ; — but ei- 
ther deliver me from this great misery, or give me 
grace to bear patiently thy sharp correction. It was 
thine hand that delivered the people of Israel from 
Pharoah, who for 400 years did oppress, and keep 
them in bondage. Give me grace to tarry until thy 
pleasure, patiently bearing thy work, and assuredly 
knowing that as thou canst, so thou wilt deUver me, 
when it shall please thee ; nothing doubting or mis- 
trusting thy goodness unto me ; for thou knowest 
better what is good for me than I do ; therefore do 
with me in all things as thou wilt. Only arm me, I 
beseech thee, with thine armor, that I may stand 
fast ; my loins being girt about with verity, having 
on the breast plate of righteousness, and the shoes 
of the gospel of peace ; above all things taking the 
shield of faith, and the helmet of salvation, and the 
sword of the Spirit, which is the word of God ; pray- 
ing always, with all manner of prayer and supplica- 
tion, that I may refer myself wholly to thy will, a- 
bide in thy pleasure, and comfort myself in those 
troubles which it shall please thee to send me, see- 
ing such troubles are profitable for me, and seeing I 
am assuredly persuaded, that it cannot but be well 
— all that thou dost. Hear me, O merciful Father, 
for his sake whom thou wouldst to be a sacrifice for 



LADT JANE GREY. 31 

my sins ; to whom, with thee, and the Holy Ghost, 
be all honor and glory. — Amen." 

In the place of her gloomy confinement she en- 
graved with a pin, the following lines. 

" Think not, O mortal, vainly gay, 
That thou from human woes art free ; 

The bitter cup I drink to-day 

To-morrow may be drank by thee. 

Harmless is malice if our God be nigh; 

Fruitless all pains if he his help deny. 

Patient I pass these gloorny hours away, 

And wait the morning of Eternal Day." 

I cannot forbear transcribing the concise and ele- 
gant character given of her by Mr. Fuller. " She 
had the innocence of childhood, the beauty of youth, 
the solidity of middle life — and all at 17. She had 
the birth of a princess, the learning of a divine, and 
the life of a saint ; and yet suffered the death of a 
malefactor, for the offences of her parents." 



PHILIP DE MORNAY, 

LORD DU PLESSIS. 



Philip de Mornay, an illustrious French no- 
bleman, was descended from an ancient family, 
which had produced many eminent men, 

1549. and born Nov- 5, 1549. His education 
was conducted with the utmost care ; 
tutors were provided for him in all languages and 
sciences, and his progress was such as might be 
expected from a superior genius, with close appli- 
cation. While his young mind was forming, his 
mother, who was a Protestant, insensibly inspired it 
with her own principles, jind laid true religion as 
the foundation of his future fame. His zeal 
against popery exposed him partially to the perse- 
cutions which the Huguenots experienced, and he 
and his mother very narrowly escaped the diaboli- 
cal massacre at Paris. 

His youth was divided between a military life, 
which the state of his country seemed to require, 
and travels into foreign parts, where his stock of 
knowledge gained an immense increase. In his 
maturity, he was called to the perplexing cares of a 
statesman, and found himself high in office and in 
honor, at tlie court of Henry the Fourth of France. 

Amidst the whelming vortex of public life, he 
found time and attention for study and literary pur- 



PHILIP DE MORNAY. 83 

suits. In his 26th year he married, and pubhshed 
the same year a moral treatise on " Life and Death," 
and at different periods completed, a number of 
valuable literary works. His treatise " concerning 
the church," was an explanation of the motives that 
induced him to renounce the Romish for the Pro- 
testant faith. Then followed his " Truth of the 
Christian Religion ;" the " Just Procedure of those 
of the Reformed Religion ;" and " The Eucharist." 
The latter work occasioned the conference at Fon- 
tainbleau, in the year 1600, between Du Plessis 
and a celebrated Romish Cardinal, which so exalted 
the reputation and popularity of Du Plessis, that he 
was known by the title of the " Protestant Pope." 
He produced in 1607, a work named "The Mystery 
of Iniquity, or History of the Papacy," which traced 
the gradual progress of ecclesiastical tyranny, com- 
pared with Scripture prophecies. 

About the same time, he published his " Exhor- 
tation to the Jews, concerning the Messiah." But 
the production that gained the most distinguished 
rank in the literary and Christian world, was his 
" Defence of the truth of the Christian Religion," 
in which he employs the weapons of reason and of 
learning, with great force and skill against atheists, 
epicureans, heathens, Jews, Mohammedans and 
infidels. All his literary works exhibited marks of 
genius, piety, and deep research, and were most of 
them written in French first, and tlien translated in- 
to Latin. 

He spent the two last years of his life at his 

barony of La Forest, in Poictou, in retirement, 

study and devotion. In his last illness his mind 

was greatly concerned for the distresses of the Pro- 

3 



34 BIOGRAPHY OF PIOUS PERSONS. 

testant church, and many of his seasons of devo- 
tion were employed in suppHcating her deHverance. 
When he was j-eminded of his great services to the 
church, he replied, " alas ! what was there of mine 
in the work 1 Say not it was /, but the gra^e of 
God that was in me. I ask for nothing but mercy 
— free mercy." He declared that his hope was 
founded on the goodness of God in Jesus Christ, 
who had been made unto him wisdom, righteous- 
ness, sanctification and redemption. To one who 
blessed God for giving him such peace and comfort 
in death, he said earnestly, " / feel, I feel what I 
speak." 

On the morning of the day in which he died, he 
repeated with great emphasis, " We hnoiv that if our 
earthly house of this tabernacle be dissolved, we 
have a building of God, an house not made with 
hands, eternal in the heavens." " Are you assured," 
said a friend, " of sharing in that eternal weight of 
glory 1" " I am perfectly assured," answered he, 
" by the demonstration of the Holy Spirit, more 
powerfully, more clear and certain, than any demon- 
stration of Euclid." As he secretly prayed, the 
following broken sentences were gathered by sur- 
rounding friends. " I fly, I fly to heaven. Let the 
angels now carry me to the bosom of my Saviour." 
As his last moments vanished, he said, " I know 
that my Redeemer hveth, and with these eyes shall 
I see him ;" repeating several times emphatically, 
" hipse oculis.^' 

Thus in the lively exercise of faith died this good 
man, in 1623, great in honors, venerable in years, 
and full of unspeakable peace. 



SIR FRANCIS BACON. 



Francis Bacon was the son of Sir Nicholas 
Bacon, lord keeper of the great seal, in the reign of 
Ehzabeth, and of Anna, the daughter of Sir Anthony 
Cooke, illustrious both for her classical attainments 
and domestic virtues. He was born in 
1661. the year 1661, and so rapid werehis advan- 
ces in the different branches of science, 
that he was judged qualified for the university at the 
age of 12 years, and placed at Trinity College, 
Cambridge. Here he made such incredible progress 
as to complete the whole circle of the liberal arts 
before the age of 16, and to perceive, even at that 
early period, the futility and imperfection of the 
reigning philosophy, which afterwards, for the service 
of mankind, he so efTectually exposed. 

Leaving the university with the highest applause, 
he was sent on his travels, and there acquired a deep, 
and almost intuitive knowledge of the manners and 
customs of other countries, the characters and views 
of their princes and ministers, which he exemplified 
in a paper on the sreneral state of Europe, pubhshed 
before he attained his 19(h year. During the reign 
of Elizabeth, the strong enmity of Sir Robert Cecil 
prevented his being advanced at court ; hence he 
prosecuted philosophical studies with energy, and 



36 BIOGUAPHY OF PIOUS PERSONS. 

gave his time to the composition and publication of 
learned works. 

In the reign of the First James, he was called 
from the retirement of his studies, to the disturbed 
theatre of public life. In 1614, he was appointed 
attorney general, — iu 1616, privy counsellor, — in 
1617, lord keeper of the seals. But the rapidity of 
his promotion excited envy in the ambitious, and 
hatred in the disappointed rival ; and he began to 
feel that the cares of high office, only opened the 
way for more formidable causes of pain. He had 
scarcely attained the dangerous summit of honor, 
when he was hurled from it, with the impeachment 
of his honesty, and with the accusation of error in 
his character of chief judge. Different historians 
have differently colored this event, according to their 
particular attachments or prejudices ; but the candid 
and judicious have believed him a martyr, more than 
a criminal, and have seen in his sudden disgrace an 
exemplification of Shakespeare's expressive senti- 
ment, — 

"Ah how wretched 
Is that poor man who hangs on jjiinccs' favors !" 

The reflecting mind may also perceive the hand 
of God, taking him from those scenes which often 
corrupt the noblest soul, compress it in the bonds of 
the world, and ahenate it from its God. May we 
not apply to him that beautiful passage from the 
book of wisdom ? — " He was taken away suddenly, 
lest wickedness should alter his understanding, or 
deceit beguile his soul." Imprisonment gave him 
leisure to review his past life, to confirm his princi- 
ples and habits, to renew the fervor of his devotion. 
From prison he passed to the shades of a literary 



srR FRANCIS BACON. 37 

and contemplative life, which he had always loved, 
and from which he had been unfortunately called. 
Experimental philosophy again allured his genius, 
and employed his time, and his investigations contin- 
ued to lead his mind powerfully to the First Cause 
of the wonders and mysteries of Nature. 

He observes in his works, that "a thorough in- 
sight into philosophy makes a good believer, but a 
smattering naturally produces a race of despicable 
infidels. I" had rather believe all the fables in the 
Legend, the Talmud, and the Alcoran, than that- this 
universal frame is without a mind: and therefore God 
never wrought a miracle to convert an atheist, be- 
cause his ordinary works confute atheism. A little 
philosophy may incline men to atheism, but depth in 
philosophy will bring them to religion : for while the 
mind looks on second causes scattered, it must 
sometimes rest in them, but when it beholds the 
chain confederated and linked together, it must 
needs fly to Providence and the Deity. The first 
principle of right reason is religion, and after all my 
studies and inquiries, I durst die with no other 
thoughts than those of the Christian ReUgion." 

While this active man waspursuing his researches, 
and anxiously studying the mysteries in which Na- 
ture has enveloped her operations, he was suddenly 
taken ill, at Highgate, in the midst of his experi- 
ments. He was conveyed to the house of the Earl 
of Anmdel in the vicinity, and after a week's sick- 
ness, breathed his last on the 9th of April, 1626. 
So passed away a philosopher, — a mim of genius — 
science — penetration — deep research ; — and what is 
still more, — a Christian. 

Addison, in vindication of tlie Christian religion, 
3* 



38 BIOGRAPHY OF PIOUS PERSONS. 

having enumerated some of the wisest men who had 
believed and practised it, gives this testimony of 
Bacon; "I shall in this paper only instance a man, 
who for the greatness of his genius, and compass of 
his knowledge, did honor to his age and country, I 
had almost said to human nature itself. He pos- 
sessed at once, all those extraordinary talents which 
were divided among the great authors of antiquity ; 
he had the sound, distinct knowledge of Aristotle, 
with all the beautiful light graces emd embellishments 
of Gicero : one does not know which to admire 
most in his writings ; the strength of reason, force 
of style, or brightness of imagination. I was infi- 
nitely pleased to find among the works of this extra- 
ordinary man, a prayer of his own composing, which 
for elevation of thought, and piety of expression, 
seems rather the devofion of an angel than a man." 
But our present design is not to follow the flight 
of his genius, or the depth of his philosophical re- 
searches ; they are preserved for the wonder and 
admiration of posterity. We come to view him in 
his devotions ; for he possessed that spirit which 
Yeason approves, and revelation purifies and exalts, 
we come to view him as his own private i>age dis- 
closes him, prostrate before the mercy seat, humbled 
by the afflictions which lay'heavy upon him, yet sup- 
ported by a sense of his integrity, and love of man- 
kind, and proving that the experience of the Psalmist 
was his also : "It is good for me to draw nigh unto 
God." 

Ji Prayer preserved among his Manuscripts. 
"Most Gracious Lord God, my Merciful Father, 



SIR. FRANCIS BACON. 89 

my Creator, my Redeemer, and my Comforter. 
Thou, Lord, searchest the depths and secrets of 
all hearts ; thou acknowledgest the upright of heart, 
thou judgest the hypocrite : thou ponderest man's 
thoughts and doings as in a balance ; thou measur- 
est their intentions as with a line ; vanity and crooked 
ways cannot be hidden from thee. Remember, 
Lord, how thy servant has walked before thee ; 
remember what I have sought, and what has .been 
principal in my intentions. I have loved thine 
assembUes, I have mourned for the divisions of thy 
church, I have delighted in the brightness of thy 
sanctuary ; the vine which thy right hand hath planted 
in this nation, I have ever prayed unto thee that it 
might have the first and the latter rain, and that she 
might stretch her branches to the sea and to the 
flood. The state and bread of the poor and op- 
pressed, have been precious in mine eyes ; I have 
hated all cruelty and hardness of heart : I have, 
though a despised weed, procured the good of all 
men. If any have been enemies, I thought not of 
them ; neither hath the sun set upon my displeasure, 
but I have been as a dove, free from all superfluity 
of maliciousness. Thousand have been my sins, 
and ten thousand my transgressions ; but thy sancti- 
fications .have remained with me, and mine heart, 
through thy grace, hath been an miquenched coal on 
thine altar. 

Lord my strength! — I have since my youth 
met with thee in all ray ways, by thy fatherly com- 
passions, by thy comfortable chastisements, by thy 
visible providences. As thy favors have increased 
upon me, so have thy corrections ; so as thou hast 
always been near me, Lord ; and ever as my 



40 BIOGRAPHY OF PIOUS PERSONS. 

worldly blessings were exalted, so secret daits from 
thee have pierced me; and when I ha\e ascended 
before men, I have descended in liuniiliation before 
thee. 

And now, when I thought most of peace and 
honor, thine hand is heavy upon nie, and hath hum- 
bled me according to thy former loving kindness, 
keeping me still in thy school, not as an alien, but a 
child. Just are thy judgments upon me for my 
sins, which are more in number than the sands of the 
sea, but have no proporlion to thy mercies : for 
what are the sands of the sea 1 Karth, heavens, 
and all these, are nothing to thy mercies ! I confess 
before thee, that I am debtor to thee for the precious 
talent of thy gifts and graces, wiiich I have neither 
put into a napkin, or put out as I ought, to exchan- 
gers, where it might have made best profit ; but 
misspent it in things for which I was least fit ; so I 
may truly say, my soul hath been a stranger in the 
house of her pilgrimage. Be merciful unto me, 
Lord, for my tiaviour's sake ; and receive n.e 
unto thy bosom, or guide me in thy nay."' 



JOIIX MILTOJT. 



John Milton, a most illustrious English Poet, 
was descended from an ancient family. His g^:and- 
father, a zealous Papist, disinherited his only son, 
the father of our poet, for embracing the Protestant 
faith. He took refuge in London, and obtained the 
employment of a scrivener ; and in that 

1608. place, on the 9th of December, 1608, 
was bom his first son, John Milton. 

After receiving a domestic education, he was re- 
moved to St. Paul's School, where by indefatigable 
application he made great progress in classical 
learning ; and from the 1 2th year of his age devot- 
ed the greatest part of the night to study. In his 
16th year he was admitted to Christ's College, Cam- 
bridge, where he continued seven years, strengthen- 
ing the foundation which he had previously laid, and 
erecting thereon a superstructure which should con- 
tain the whole circle of arts and sciences. He had 
composed some beautiful Latin Poems, previous to 
his entrance at the University ; and the greatest part 
of his compositions in that language, were produced 
during the period of his continuance there. After 
his emancipation he returned to his father, and 
prosecuted his studies for 5 years with unparalleled 
assiduity and success, and read with renewed atten- 



42 BIOGUAPHV OF P[OL'S PERSONS. 

tion all the Greek and Latin authors. His father 
had de.signed him for the church ; but hiy mind had 
been so disgusted with the controversies of difterent 
sects, tliat this intention was frustrated. 

After the death of his mother, he began his trav- 
els, through France and Italy, with the spirit of a 
studious inquirer, seeking to gain from the customs 
and curiosities of other countries something to in- 
crease his cherished stock of knowledge. He 
gained many admirers, particularly at Florence, 
where his literary attainments were highly applaud- 
ed. In his second journey to Rome, he was in- 
formed that the Jesuits were incensed against him, 
for the freedom of his discourse on religious sub- 
jects, and was cautioned to beware of their malice. 
" I have made it a rule," said Milton, " never to start 
a religious subject in this country, but if I were 
questioned concerning my faith, never to dissemble, 
whatever I might suffer." " He had," says a writer 
of celebrity, " a soul above disguise and dissimula- 
tion, and was never ashamed or afraid to vindicate 
the truth ; for he had in him the spirit of an old 
martyr." 

His purpose was to have visited Sicily and 
Greece, but receiving intelligence of the civil con- 
tentions in his own country, he felt it inconsistent 
with his principles to continue abroad, even for the 
improvement of his mind, while his countrvmen 
were struggling for liberty at home. He returned, 
and engaged ardently in the cause of republicanisin, 
for his powerful and independent mind was di:<gust- 
ed with the yoke and trappings of royalty. 

He undertook, also, tlie education of a small 
number ot young men, and like many other great 



JOHN MILTON. 43 

characters, delighted in impressing on the unformed 
mind, the principles of knowledge and virtue. His 
method of education was as much superior to the 
{)edantry and jargon of common schooLs, as his ge- 
nius was superior to that of a common schoolmas- 
ter. His letter to Mr. Samuel Hartlib, elucidates 
in some measure his own method and practice. 

The controversies of the times began to engage 
him, and in the course of the year 1641, he wrote 
and published, a treatise of Reformation, in two vol- 
umes; prelatical Episcopacy; the Reason of Church 
Government urged against Prelacy ; and animad- 
versions upon a work of Bishop Hall. When we 
consider that these books were all completed, with- 
in the short circle of a year — of a year given also 
to the instruction of young persons in the Lktin, 
Greek, Hebrew, Chaldee, Syriac, Italian and 
PVench languages, with the sciences of mathemat- 
ics and astronomy, we are astonished at what his 
diligence accomplished, and amazed at what his 
mind could contain. 

In 1 643 he married ; but whatever were his en- 
gagements, literature and poetry were not long ab- 
sent from his thoughts. In 1645 a collection of his 
Latin and Knglisli poems appeared, in which the 
Allegro, Pcnseroso, and some others were first pub- 
lished. Controversies, theological and political, 
with many adversaries, particularly the celebrated 
Salmasius, employed much of his time. After 
the tragical death of Charles First, a book was pub- 
lished by one of his adherents, entitled The Royal 
Image : which excited greater emotion and com- 
miseration in the minds of the people, than the 
King himself did, while alive. Milton answered it 
with energy and success, entitling his work, " Ico- 



44 BIOGRAPHY OF PIOUS PERSONS. 

noclastes" or, The Image Breaker, the surname of 
some Greek Emperors, who in their zeal against 
idolatry, broke all superstitious images to pieces. 

But to enumerate and give the character of his 
controversial works would be an impossibility, and 
I cannot but regret that a man of his talents and 
erudition, should employ so much of his time in 
compositions of local value, which though they are 
strongly marked with the spirit of the times, and the 
power of a great genius, do not essentiallylnstruct 
or benefit posterity. 

He had begun a History of England, deduced 
from the earliest period, but proceeded no farther 
than the Norman Conquest ; a call to the office of 
Latin Secretary for foreign affairs put a partial check 
upon his private studies. A personal calamity also 
afflicted him ; his eye sight had long been weak and 
decaying, while his intense studies only increased the 
malady. The sight of his left eye first failed him, 
and about the year 1648, he became totally blind. 
In a letter to his physician, marlung the progress of 
this affliction, he says — " a constant and settled 
darkness is before me, as well by day as by night ; 
a direct blackness, or else spotted and woven with 
ash-color, is used to pour itself on me, except now 
and then, the eye rolling itself a little, seems to ad- 
mit, I know not what little smallness of light as 
through a chink." Or to use his pathetic words — 

" Hail, holy light — Offspring of Heaven! — but thou 

Revisit'st not these eves, that roll in vain 

To find thy piercing ray and find no dawn. 

Seasons return, but not to me return 

Day, or the sweet approach of even or morn, 

Or sight of vernal bloom, or summer's rose, 

Or flocks, or herds, or human face divine." 



JOHN MILTON. 46 

Other afflictions also awaited him. The excru* 
ciatiiig pains of the gout completed the ruin of his 
constitution, and led him to the tomb. He sulFered 
great jiecuniary losses in the civil wars, and after 
the re-establishment of monarchy lost his office of 
Latin Secretary, and narrowly escaped imprison- 
ment and trial, for his attachment to republican prin- 
ciples. He met also with domestic vexations ; his 
first wife disliking his retired and studious Ufe, went 
again to the gaiety of her father's house, refusing to 
remain with him ; but at length returned of her own 
accord, and obtained reconciliation. The second, 
whose sweetness and goodness he commends, died 
in a few months after marriage ; and the third, who 
survived him, was a woman of a violent spirit 

But no trouble, pecuniary, domestic or personal, 
could turn his attention or his love from his studies ; 
for his mind was too eager to be diverted, and too 
strong to be subdued. Afler the Restoration he 
spent the remainder of his life in retirement, and 
closely applied himself to finish Paradise Lost, which 
he began to reduce to its present form in 1655, and 
published in 1 677. Poetry, music and mathemat- 
ics, were his favorite amusements ; and he excelled 
in the studies of logic, history and divinity. He 
read in many languages, and was complete master 
of the Greek, Latin, Hebrew, Chaldee, Syriac, Ital- 
ian, French and Spanish. He had a quick appre- 
hension, a sublime imagination, a strong memory, a 
piercing judgment, a wit always ready and adapted 
to the occasion. 

It was his belief that his loss of sight added vigor 
to his mental iiiculties, by turning his attention from 
frivolous objects and concentrating tlic energies of 
4 



46 BIOGRAPHY or I'lOUS PERSOMS. 

his soul. He had the advantage of a pious educa- 
tion, and all his writings, whether poetry or prose, 
whether written in youth, maturity or age, deeply 
evidence a religious turn of mind. He studied and 
admired the Holy Scriptures above all books what- 
ever, expressed the profoundest reverence for the 
Deity in all his words and actions, and was full of 
the spirit of religion. 

While we contemplate the mental excellences of 
men,, we naturally form some image or associate 
some idea of their i)ersonal appearance. From a 
very ancient writer I accordingly extract this des- 
cription. " In youth, Milton was esteemed very 
beautiful, and while he was a student in Cambridge, 
went by the name of the Lady of Chiist's College. 
He had a very fine skin, and fresh complexion ; 
his hair was of a light brown, and parting on the 
forehead, hung down in cmls waving upon his 
shoulders ; his features were exact and regular ; 
his vtice agreeable and musical ; his deport- 
ment erect and manly. lie was middle sized, and 
well proportioned, neither tall or short, lean or cor- 
pulent ; strong and active in his younger years, and 
though ever afflicted with severe head aches, and 
finally with blindness and gout, was still a comely 
and well lookhig man to the last. His eyes were 
of a light blue color, and after he lost the sight of 
them, which happened in his 43d year, they still ap- 
peared without t-pot or blemish. 

The number ot' his written works was 40, many 
in the Latin language, and some consisting of seve- 
ral volumes. His sonnets, epigrams and letters are 
also numerous, tuid the immense proportion of 
writing done iu his office of Latin Secretary for 
foreign affairs, during (he reign of Cromwell and 



JOHN Mir.TON. 47 

the CommonwcaHh, it is impossible to calculate. — 
But intense habits of study, and the crnol rava- 
ges of the gout, were daily, weakening his hold 
upon life. In his 66th year, on the 10th of No- 
vember, 1674, he died by a quiet and silent expira- 
tion, without a groan, a struggle or a sigh. 

Three daughters by his first wife survived him ; 
the only chikl of his second wife died with her, and 
his third had none. His only son died an infant, 
and his last descendant, the youngest daughter of 
Milton's youngest, was found some time in the last 
century, living in great obscurity and poverty. The 
bounty of a generous people made the decline of her 
life comfortable, from veneration to the memory of 
her grandfather ; but his line is now wholly extinct. 

Of all the voluminous writings of Milton, that 
of Paradise Lost, has the most greatly contributed 
to establish his fame, and gain the admiration of 
posterity. He has scorned the aid of other poets, 
and piirsued a tract of originality, borne on the wings 
of his own strong and aspiring genius. Dr. John- 
son says, " from his cotemporaries, he neither 
courted or received support ; there is in his writings, 
nothing by which the pride of other authors might 
be gratified, or their favor gained ; no exchange of 
praise, no solicitation of support. His great works 
were performed under discountenance and in blind- 
ness, but difficulties vanished at his touch ; he was 
bom for whatever is arduous." Hayley, one of his 
biographers, says, " Milton was perhaps of all mor- 
tals the least selfish ; he contended for religion 
without seeking emoluments from the church, and 
for the state without aiming at civil or military em- 
ployment. There is one rjfiaracteristic of this great 



48 BIOGRAPHY OF PIOUS PERSONS. 

man which ought to bo considered as the chief source 
of his happiness and fame ; that is, his early and 
perpetual attachment to religion. 

"It must gratify every Christian to reflect, that the 
man of our country most eminent for energy of 
mind, for intenseness of application, and frankness 
and intrepidity in asserting what he believed to be the 
cause of truth, was so constantly devoted to Chris- 
tianity, that he appears to have made the Bible not 
only the rule of his conduct, but the director of his 
genius. His poetry flowed from the Scripture, as 
if his unparalleled poetical powers had been ex- 
pressly given him by Heaven, for the purpose of 
imparting to religion such lustre as the' most splen- 
did of human faculties could bestow." 

The majesty and sublimity of this great work, 
and its uncommon success, may be imputed to the 
manner and perseverance of the poet's preparation. 
Deep reflection added solidity to his genius, constant 
study of the holy Scriptures elevated and gave it 
sublimity, fervent prayer strengthened, purified, 
perfected his design. Think not that this is 
unfounded conjecture, and that without authority 
we add him to the number of those who have prac- 
tised the duty of prayer and experienced its efiica- 
cy. Read his own unequivocal testimony, given in 
the " Reason of Church Government," published 
in 1641. He there promises with calm confidence to 
undertake something which may be of use and 
honor to his country. " This," says he, " is not to 
be obtained but by devout prayer to that Eternal 
Spirit, that can enrich with all utterance and know- 
ledge, and send out his seraphim with the hallowed 
fire of his altar, to touch and purify the lips of 



JOHN MILTON. 49 

tvhom he pleases. To this must be added industri- 
ous and select reading, steady observation, and in- 
sight into all seemly and generous arts and affairs ; 
till which in some measure be compassed, I refuse 
not to sustain this expectation." Dr. Johnson 
remarks, that " from a promise like this, at once 
fervid, pious and rational, might be expected the 
Paradise Lost." Thus setting himself apart by 
prayer and meditation, as for a holy work, he ob- 
tained grace from on high, with the spirit of utter- 
ance and wisdom, so that he might live after death, 
in the memory and admiration of men. In almost 
every part of this sublime poem, we trace the sen- 
timents and the fervor of a Christian, and on the first 
page he solicits the aid of the Holy Spirit, that aid 
which he had so often entreated in the silence of 
the closet, and the solemnity of secret devotion. 

"But chiefly thou, O Spirit, that dost prefer 
Above all temples, tlie upright heart and pure, 
Instruct me. 

What in me is dark 
Illumine : what is low raise and support : 
That to the hei<jht of this great argument 
I may asseit eternal Providence, 
And justify the ways of God to man." 

Also in his third book, after a feeling allusion to 
his melancholy state of blindness, he invokes that 
divine Light which shineth from abovs and enlight- 
eneth the darkness of man's heart. 

"But thickened clouds and ever during dark 
Surround me : — from the cheerful ways of man 
Cutoff: fair Nature's works expunged and rased 
And wisdom at one entrance quite shut out. 
So much the rather, thou Celestial Light, 
4* 



60 BIOGRAPHY OF PIOUS PERSONS. 

Sliine inward : and the mind through all her powers 
Irradiate. Tliere plant eyes, nil mist from thence 
Purge and disperse, that 1 may see and tell 
Ot" things invisible to mortal sight." 

He implies that his prayer had been successful, 
and that the work to him was divested of labor, for 
as if inspired, the thoughts and expressions were 
poured upon him in their full tide of melody. He 
speaks of the assistance given him, under the figure 
of a celestial patroness, who he says, 

" Dictates to Itim slumbering, and inspires 
Easy his luiprcmeditatcd verse." 

" I sing with voice unchanged, 
To hoarse or mute, though fallen on evil days. 
On evil days though iallcn, and evd tongues : 
In darkne.-s, and with dangers eojupassed round 
And solitude : yrt not alone, while thou 
Visit'st my shuiihers nightly, or when morn 
Purples (lie cast. Slill govern tlu)U my song. 
For thou art heavenly." 

His high idea of the efficacy of prayer, may be 
drawn from the circumstance of his rej)rescnling 
our first parents in deep and contrite sujjplication, 
after their act cf disobedience, and his supposing 
the Saviour to intercede for them, and even the Al- 
mighty to listen and to relent. 

" How much more if we pray him, will his ear 
Be open ; and his heart to pity incline. 
So spake our Father penitent, nor Eve 
F'elt less remorse. They forthw ith to the place 
Re])airing where he judged them, prostrate fell 
Before him reverent, and hoth confessed 
Huml)ly their faults, and jiardon begged with tears 
Watering the ground, and with their sighs the air 
Frequenting, sent from contrite hearts m sign 



JOHN MILTON. 51 

Of sorrow uafci|incd and humiliation metk. 
Thus they in lowliest plight repentant stood 
Praying, for from the mercy seat above 
Prevenient grace descending had removed 
The stony (torn their hearts, that sighs now breathed 
Unutterable, which the Spirit of prayer 
Inspired, and winged for heaven with speedier flight 
Than loudest oratory ; in they passed 
Dimcnsionless through heavenly doors, tlien clad 
With incense where the golden altar fumed, 
By their great intercessor, came in sight 
Before the Fatiier's throne ; then the glad Son 
Presenting, thus to intercede began." 



SIR MATTHEW HALE. 



Sir Matthew Hale, lord chief justice of En- 
gland, was born in Gloucestershire, in the 

1609. year 1609; the son of a barrister, eminent 
for integrity and piety. Before he was 
six years old, he lost both his parents, but by the 
care of a judicious guardian, great attention was 
paid to his education. At Oxford he for awhile 
distinguished himself by his proficiency, until some 
strolling players took up their abode near the uni- 
versity, and his fondness for theatrical amusements 
partially stifled his affection for study. He imbibed 
also a strong inclination for a military life, and it 
was with difficulty that a valuable friend persuaded 
him to correct the rashness of his choice, and em- 
brace the profession of the law. After his entrance 
at Lincoln's Inn, his former love of knowledge re- 
turned,' and his application was so unremitting that he 
studied fifteen hours in a day, for many years. In 
early youth, his fondness for company led him into 
many levities and extravagances, but this propensity 
was subdued by a circumstance which made a deep 
impression on his mind during the remainder of his 
life. 

Having joined a party of young men of his ac- 
quaintance, one of them, through excess of wine, 



SIR MATTHEW HALE. 63 

fell down, apparently dead at their feet. Young 
Hale was so affected on the occasion, that he im- 
mediately retired to another room, and shutting the 
door, fell on his knees, and prayed earnestly to Go<l 
that his friend might be restored to life, and that he 
might be pardoned for giving countenance to such 
excess. At the same time he made a solemn vow 
that he would never again mingle in such pursuits, 
or "drink a health" while he lived. The life of 
his friend was restored, and he ever after religiously 
observed his vow. There appeared an entire change 
in his disposition ; he forsook all dissipated com- 
pany, and strictly divided his time between the 
studies of his profession, and the duties of religion. 

He became remarkable for a grave and exemplary 
deportment, great moderation of temper, and reli- 
gious tenderness of sph-it, was frequent in secret 
prayer, fasting, and giving alms, and was so far from 
being lifted up by spiritual pride, that the remem- 
brance of his past infirmities frequently led him to 
express a fear, "lest he should be left to do some 
enormous thing, which might cast a reproach upon 
his profession, and give great advantage to impious 
men to blaspheme the name of God." 

He was exemplary in family religion, performed the 
service of daily worship, and was so attached to the 
public ordinances of the Sabbath that for 36 years 
he was never absent from church. The following 
short extract from a diary that he regularly kept, 
shows the piety of his mind, and his solicitude to 
make tlie best use of his time. 

Momino;. 
1. "To IHl up the heart in thankfulness to God 
for renewing my life. 



54 BIOGRAPHY OF PIOUS PERSONS. 

2. To renew my covenant with God in Christ ; 
first by acts of faith receiving Christ, and rejoicing 
in the height of that relation : secondly by resolving 
to be one of his people, and to do him allegiance. 

3. Adoration and Prayer. 

Day Employment. 

1. In our ordinary calling to serve God. It is a 
service to Christ, though ever so mean. Here ob- 
serve faithfulness, diligence, cheerfulness. Be care- 
ful not to overcharge myself with more business 
than I can bear. 

2. Spiritual employment. Mingle somewhat of 
God's immediate service with the business of the 
day. 

If alone. 

1. Beware of wandering, vain, sensual thoughts : 
fly from thyself rather than entertain them. 

Let thy solitary thoughts be profitable. View 
the evidences of thy salvation, the state of thy soul, 
the coming of Christ, and thine own mortality ; this 
will make thee humble and watchful. 

Company. 

Do good to them. Use God's name reverently. 
Beware of leaving an ill impression or ill example. 

Receive good from them if they are more know- 
ing. 

Evenino;. 
Cast up the accoimts of the day. [f there was 
aught amiss, beg pardon : resolve to be more vigi- 
lant. If tho\i hast (lone well, bless iho mercy and 



SIR MATTHEW HALE. 56 

grace of God which have suppUed thee." — Thus 
did this excellent niaii watch his spiritual concerns, 
at the same time that he was making progress m the 
sciences, and becoming a greater proficient in the 
law than any of his cotemporaries. In his office of 
judge he conducted himself with the strictest integ- 
rity, and the motives that influenced him were foun- 
ded on the oidy firm basis — that of piety. The 
excellence of his resolution may be seen by a short 
extract from one of his papers, entitled " Things to 
be had in continual remembrance. — That iji the 
administration of justice I am entrusted for God, the 
king and the country ; and therefore that it be done 
uprightly, dehberately, resolutely. That I rest not 
upon my own direction and strength ; but implore 
and rest upon the direction and strength of God. 
That in the execution of justice, I carefully lay aside 
my own passions, and give no countenance to them, 
however provoked. That I be not biassed by com- 
passion to the poor, or favor to the rich, in point of 
justice. That popular applause, or court dishke, 
have no influence in any thing I do in the distribution 
of justice. That I be not solicitous about what men 
thuik or say, so long as I keep myself exactly accor- 
dant to the rules of justice." 

He raised the reputation of the court by his im- 
partial administration, diligence fmd exactness, while 
ho supported the character of a true Christian, by 
temperance, charity and hiunility. He reserved a 
tenth part of all he obtained for works of benevolence, 
and in an age when the most profuse entertainments 
were fashionable, never attended any, or gave any 
except to the poor ; literally fulfilling that command 
of our Saviour, "When thou makest a feast, call the 
poor, and the lame, the halt, and the blind." Ho 



56 BIOGRAPHY OF PIOUS PERSONS. 

would never receive the smallest present from those 
whose causes were before him, or listen to private 
addresses from the greatest personages in any matter 
where justice was concerned. One of the highest 
peers of England, once went to his chamber, and 
informed him, " that having a suit in law to be tried 
before him, he came to acquaint him with its circum- 
stances, that he might the better understand it, when 
it should be heard in court ;" but he interrupted him 
with the declaration, "that he never received any 
information of causes but in open court, where both 
parties might be heard alike." The duke departed, 
greatly displeased, and complained to Charles Se- 
cond : but his majesty commanded him "to be con- 
tent, for he himself should not have been treated 
better, if he had gone thus to solicit him in any of 
his own causes." 

Among the particular friends of Sir Matthew 
Hale, was the celebrated Selden, who induced him 
to engage in the whole circle of the sciences, for his 
apprehension was quick, his memory tenacious, and 
his application indefatigable. To his professional 
knowledge he united an acquaintance with mathe- 
matics, anatomy, surgery, physic, experimental 
philosophy, history, chronology, and divinity. It 
would seem incredible that amidst all these studies, 
he should find time for composition, yet he com- 
pleted fourteen different works, many of them of con- 
siderable length, and all bearing the stamp of unaf- 
fected piety. 

His "Contemplations, moral and divine," are 
deservedly admired by every friend of experimental 
Christianity. "True religion," he says there, 
"teaches the soul an high veneration for Almighty 
God; asiaccrc and upright walking as iallic presence 



SIR MATTHEW HALE. 67 

of the invisible, all-seeing One. It ninkcs a man 
truly love, honor, obey him, and be careful to know 
what his will is. It renders the heart thankful to 
him, as Creator, Redeemer, Benefactor. It makes 
a man entirely depend on him, seek for guidance, 
protection, direction, and submit to his will with 
patience and resignation of soul. It gives the law 
not only to his words and actions, but to his very 
thoughts and purposes ; so that he dare not entertain 
any, which are unbecoming the presence of that God 
to whom all thoughts are legible. It crushes all 
pride and haughtihess, both in the heart and carriage, 
and gives an humble state of mind belbre God and 
man. It regulates the passions, and brings them 
into due moderation. It gives a man a right esti- 
mate of this present world, and sets his heart and 
hopes above it, so that he neveV loves it more than it 
deserves. It makes the wealth and glory of this 
world, high places and great preferments, but of little 
consequence to him ; so that he is neither covetous, 
nor ambitious, nor over-solicitous concerning their 
advantages. It makes him value the love of God 
and the peace of his own conscience, above all the 
wealth and honor in the world, and to be very diligent 
in preserving them. He performs all his duties to 
God with sincerity and humility ; and while he lives 
on earth, his conversation, liis hope, his treasures 
are in heaven ; and he endeavors to walk suitably 
to such an hope." 

Speaking of the divine and invisible guidance 
which is often granted to the prayers of men, he 
remarks, "Though this secret direction of Alniiglily 
God is principally seen in matters relating to the 
good of the soul, yet in the concerns of tliis life, a 
good man, fearing God and begging his direction, 
5 



5S BIOGRAPHY OF PIOLS PERSONS. 

will very often, if not at all times, find it I can cull 
my own experience to witness, that even in the tem- 
poral affairs of my whole life, I have never been 
disappointed of the best direction, when I have in 
humility and sincerity implored it." 

This eminently virtuous man enjoyed almost 
uninterrupted health, till the 66th year of his age, 
when he was affected with an indisposition which 
impaired his strength and forced him to retire from 
the cares of his office. During a painful sickness 
he exhibited the most exemplary patience, and per- 
fect resignation, and enjoyed the free use of his rea- 
son and understanding till the last moment ; a favor 
for which he had often and earnestly prayed. He 
continued to retire daily for his studies and devotions, 
and when he was unable to move, would .have his 
servants carry him to the place where he had been 
accustomed to address God in secret. As the win- 
ter came on, he saw with great joy his time of deliver- 
ance approaching, and his earnest desire after a 
more glorious state was tempered witli the meekest 
submission to the will of God. He had lived a life 
of prayer, and, if it may be so expressed, he died a 
death of prayer ; for when his voice was so sunk 
that it could not be heard, his friends perceived by 
the constant lifling up of his eyes and hands, what 
was the employment of his departing soul. He 
struggled not, and seemed to have no pang in his 
last moments, but breathed out his pious spirit in 
peace,on the 25th of December, 1676, aged 67 years. 

"Siicli was thy lif(3, and sucli thy death, — in whom 
Our British theme has gloried with just cause — 
Iniaiortal liale ! for deep diseerrimeut prais'd, 
And sound integrity; — not more liian faui'd 
For sanctity olmannera undttil'd." — Cowi'tR's Task. 



REV. ROWLAND NEVIT. 



Rowland Nevit was bom in the year 1609, at 

an obscure parish in England, educated at the school 

of Shrewsbury, and while a youth admit- 

1609. ted Fellow of the University of Oxford. 
His proficiency in study well merited the 
honors which were there conferred upon him, and 
his pious inclinations led him to the clerical profes- 
sion, to which he was ordained, in his 26th year. He 
was first presented to the vicarage of Staunton, and 
afterwards to that of Oswestry, where he labored as 
a faithful and zealous minister, and strove by his 
discourses, conversation and prayers, to impress 
the minds, and benefit the souls of his flock. 

When the people of his charge were visited by 
the plague, and almost all who were able to remove 
might be seen flying in every direction, he continu- 
ed with the sick and dying remnant, comforted, in- 
structed, prayed for them, and Heaven not only pre- 
served his life, but added an apparent blessing to 
his exertions. 

With many other faithful ministers he was silen- 
ced by the act of Nonconformity, but continued 
with his people until his death, rendering them eve- 
ry service in his power. He was peculiarly atten- 
tive to the several duties of family religion, and to 



60 BIOGRAPHY OF PIOUS PERSONS. 

the pious education of his children, and continued 
an example to the believers, in " life, in conversa- 
tion, in doctrine, in spirit, in faith, in purity." He 
deeply lamented the divisions of the church, and 
the intemperate controversies of many sects, and 
though his conscience would not suffer him to read 
forms of prayer to his congregation, his love of 
peace prompted him often to join with those who did. 

In his conduct to his friends, he was unusually 
tender and affectionate, and it was observed by 
them, that he was frequently in ejaculatory prayer, 
in the midst of the common scenes and employ- 
ments of life. The service of the ministry was 
his delight, and though his strength was easily ex- 
hausted, he would solemnly appeal to his Maker, 
that " if he was wearied in his service, he could ne- 
ver be weary of it." Though subject to the fre- 
quent infirmities of a delicate constitution, he used 
to assert " that he was never better than in the pul- 
pit, and there he could wish to die." 

When he began to feel the agonies of dissolving 
nature, a friend reminded him that he would soon re- 
ceive his reward, but he rephed humbly, — " it is all 
free grace." To his children who surrounded him, 
he gave the advice and admonition of a dying father, 
praying solemnly for each, that " the Mediator's 
blessing might rest upon them," and adding this 
weighty command, " I charge you all, that you meet 
me at the right hand of Christ, at the great day." — 
Just before he departed, he said, " Go forth, my 
soul, — go forth to meet thy God ; — it is now done, 
— Lord Jesus, come quickly," and thus expired at 
his own house in Oswestry, in his 66th year, on the 
8th day of December, 1676. 



REV. FRANCIS TALLENTS. 



Francis Tallents was a native of a small town 

in Derbyshire, (Eng.) His family was originally 

of French extraction, and his parents, who 

1609. were strirtly rehgious, both died when 
their children were very young. Six or- 
phans stood around the bier on which the guides of 
their infancy were laid, and the promise was fulfilled 
t) them, which they were then too young to realize^ 
" when my father and my mother forsake me, then 
the Lord will take me up." They had an uncle, a 
respectable clergyman, who adopted the orphans as 
his own, and faithfully executed the part of a tender 
and provident father. Two of the sons he educa- 
ted liberally, and the eldest, who is the subject of 
these memoirs, so distinguished himself at the pre- 
paratory schools, that one of his instrnctoi^ wrote 
to his uncle, that " he was indeed a golden talenU* 

At 16 years of age, he was sent to the Cambridge 
University, and from thence removed to Magdalen 
College, to be tutor of the sons of the Earl of Suf- 
folk. Soon after his entrance here he became seri- 
ously impressed, and thoroughly reconciled to the 
way of life recommended in the Scriptures, and 
though he had strong temptations to infidelity, was 
enabled to be victorious, and to maintain the true 



62 BIOGRAPHY OF PIOUS PERSONS. 

faith. In his 23d year he began his travels into 
foreign parts, having nnder his care, the sons of the 
Earl of Suffolk, and while he improved his mind by 
the observation of the varying customs of men, he 
was so far from being corrupted by their wickedness 
or infidelity, that he declared on his return, that 
" what he had heard and seen abroad had served to 
confirm him in the Protestant religion." 

At his return from his tour of two years, he be- 
came an approved teacher in Magdalen College, 
and had the honor of assisting to fonn the minds of 
many who were afterwards distinguished as eminent 
scholars. He occasionally preached during his 
residence at the University, and continued at that 
seat of literature, receiving and imparting know- 
ledge, until he reached his 33d year, when he quit- 
ted his tutorship, to be ordained Pastor of St. 
Mary's Church in Shrewsbury. He was observed 
to lay aside the technical terms, and lofty style of a 
student, and though he had been 20 years an acade- 
mician, and conversant equally with the abstnase and 
refined parts of science, he studied to accommodate 
himself to the meanest capacity, and to preach 
plainly of him who was crucified. 

Mr. ^axter in his memoirs says of him, " he was 
a good scholar, and a blameless divine, most emi- 
nent for extraordinary prudence, moderation, and 
peaceable deportment towards all." Soon after his 
settlement at Shrewsbury he married, but his belov- 
ed partner survived only a short time, and his only 
child whom he educated at Cambridge, caused him 
great imeasiness by his unprincipled excesses, and 
died in early life. 

To these deep afihctions was added his eject- 



REV. FRANCIS TALLENTS. 63 

mcnt from the ministry, by the act of Uniformity to 
which his conscience would not suffer him to ac- 
cede, but prompted him rather to resign an employ- 
ment which he loved, and which was his only de- 
pendance for earthly subsistence. Yet was there 
nothing bigoted or morose in his non-conformity, 
for he attended the ministry of those who did con- 
form, and used no irritable or improper compari- 
sons. He kept the anniversary of the day in which 
he was silenced, by secret prayer and fasting, and 
styled it " a day to bring to remembrance." 

Finding himself divested of employment, he was 
prevailed upon to make a second time the tour of 
France as tutor to two young gentlemen — Bosca- 
wen and Hampden. \N hile at Paris he published 
n large treatise entitled " a description of the Ro- 
man Catholic religion." During his absence he 
carefully recorded in his journal all that was worthy 
of notice, customs — curiosities — conversation and 
character of learned men ; yet though this trans- 
cript was both interesting and instructive, he never 
could be persuaded to give it to the world. Soon 
after his return he published his " View of Univer- 
sal history," which was first commenced for the use 
of his collegiate students. About this time he suf^ 
fered from the unwarrantable oppression of the 
" Five Mile Act," which forbade all non-conformist 
ministers to approach within five miles of any 
church in which they had formerly officiated. He 
had consequently removed into an obscure part of 
the country, but his wife going to Shrewsbury upon 
business, was suddenly taken ill and died there. 

Moved by the strong impulse of mourning affec- 
tion, to go and pay the last sad duties to her re- 



64 BIOGRAPHY OF PIOUS PERSONS. 

mains, he was brutally apprehended and sent prison- 
er to Chester Castle. After his release he found 
it necessary to live in privacy and retirement, and 
to suffer in silence. When a degree of liberty was 
granted to the dissenters, he accepted it joyfully, 
and returned to his people, who received him ten- 
derly. 

During the exercise of his professional duties, 
he found time to compose and publish several 
works, and his last was "The history of Schism, 
for the promotion of Christian moderation, and the 
Communion of Saints." This book, though writ- 
ten at the advanced age of 85, shows no traces of 
decayed intellect, but is the result of much learning,, 
aided by the reflections of a mind deeply tinctured 
with piety and charity. 

Notwithstanding his great age, he experienced 
no sickness, except the gradual loss of strength, un- 
til three weeks before his death, when the decay of 
nature became more apparent. He then charged 
his friends not to pray for his life, but that he might 
be enabled patiently to wait for his change. When 
the exertions of his friends once restored him from 
a severe attack of faintness which he had hoped 
would have been his last, he said, "Why did you not 
let a poor old man go away quietly ? Here I lie, 
waiting — waiting. Yet I bless God that I am more 
full of comfort and joy than 1 am able to express." 
He was almost constantly in prayer, and on the day 
of his death seemed to be reviving, but at 9 o'clock 
ill the evening, sweetly sunk into his last sleep at 
the age of 89. 



REV. SAMUEL STONE. 



1610. 
Among those religious persons who were moved 
to emigrate from Europe, and cast into the mass of 
this New World's population, the leaven of sancti- 
fied talents, and confirmed virtue, wsis the Rev. 
Samuel Stone. He was a native of Hartford, in 
England, educated at Emmanuel College, in the 
University of Cambridge, and became the first 
minister of Hartford, in Connecticut. He was 
originally settled there, as colleague with the Rev. 
Mr. Hooker, in company with whom, he led a party 
of emigrants from Cambridge, Massachusetts, in 
June, 1636, hoping to join a colony which had been 
commenced on the banks of the Connecticut river, 
in the autumn of the preceding year. 

They travelled more than one hundred miles 
through a trackless wilderness, over mountains, 
morasses and streams, with no other guide than the 
compass, and no covering from night or tempest, 
but the heavens. About one hundred individuals 
attempted this pilgrimage. The more hardy of the 
men carried in packs upon their shoulders, the prin- 
cipal part of their property ; the remainder drove 
before them the cattle on which they depended for 
subsistence. 

More than a fortnight elapsed ere this perilous 



66 BIOGRAPHY OF PIOUS PERSONS. 

journey was completed, for among the colonists 
were many who in their native clime were accustom- 
ed to ease and affluence, women in delicate health, 
and tender babes who required shelter and care. 
The wife of the Rev. Mr. Hooker was at that 
time so much indisposed, as to be borne in a rude 
litter, upon the shoulders of firmer travellers. 

The efforts of the holy men who led this suffer- 
ing band, were well employed in strengthening their 
faith, and encouraging them to mingle with the 
spirit of endurance, cheerful praise to their preser- 
ver. The thickets which had heard only the howl 
of the savage beasts, became familiar with other 
sounds, as the Christians proceeded, for 

" They shook the depths of the desert's gloom 
With their hymns of lofty cheer." 

New trials awaited them after their arrival at the 
place of their destination. The process of clear- 
ing and rendering an uncultivated country habita- 
ble, is always laborious and subject to many obstruc- 
tions. Their sufferings diu"ing the first winter were 
so extreme, from want of food, and exposure to cold, 
from which their frail dwellings were insufficient to 
protect them, that numbers attempted to regain the 
settlements which they had left in Massachusetts, — 
and some of these left their emaciated and frozen 
carcasses in the intervening wilderness. — But the 
majority remained patient and faithful during their 
time of trial. Returning Spring enabled them to 
commit such seeds as they could procure, to the lit- 
tle spots of earth, from whence they had painfully 
exterminated the lofty trees, and clinging brambles. 

Almost the only giain which was at fust cultivat- 



REV. SAMUEL STONE. 67 

ed was Indian Com, and as no mills could be ob- 
tained it was pounded in mortars, to produce a 
coarse kind of bread, — which to those accustomed 
to the wheat of Europe, was neither palatable nor 
salutarj^ ; so that if disease did not spring from ab- 
solute famine, it was often nourished in delicate 
83'stems, by an uncongenial diet. In addition to 
these calamities, the Indians who bordered closely 
upon tliem, became infected with dislike and jeal- 
ousy, and the Httle colony, which was already di- 
minishing, by the effects of a severe climate, and 
the pressure of want, was threatened with all the 
horrors of savage warfare. But a resolution equal 
to every exigence sprang up among them, whose 
foundation was a steadfast piety. 

It becomes us now to see what part was borne by 
Mr. Stone, during the darkness which rested upon 
his people. Naturally possessed of great firmness 
and cheerfulness, he endeavored to breathe his own 
spirit into the desponding, and to establish their foot- 
steps upon the rock of Zion. in preaching, instruc- 
tion from house to house, and visits to the afilicted, 
he was unwearied. His very countenance and 
manner had a consoling influence upon the sorrow- 
ful, for he had adopted it as a maxim, that many 
who know not religion, might be led to love it, if 
they saw that it was consistent with cheerfulness. 
The benevolence which he exercised towards all, 
was guarded by the strictest observance of personal 
duties. 

In prayer he was frequent and fervent, and kept 
many days of Ikstitig; by which he thought his 
humility was increased, and the power of the world 
broken. In the observance of the Sabbath he was 



68 BIOGRAPHY OF PIOUS PERSONS. 

truly exemplary, and seemed to carry from it through- 
out the week, an elevation of soul, arising from 
communion with God. He commenced his prepara- 
tion for this holy season, early on the preceding 
evening, and after contemplation and prayer, was 
accustomed to call his family together, and repeat to 
them the sermon which he had prepared for the 
ensuing day. This furnished him with an opportu- 
nity of adapting subsequent conversation to their 
instruction on those passages which seemed most to 
interest or affect them, while by giving him a more 
thorough knowledge of his discourse, it enabled him 
by alteration and addition, to render it more lucid, 
pungent, or practical. 

He was considered uncommonly able and acute in 
argument, and as the colony rose from the weakness 
of infancy, to the accession of strength and wealth, 
his society was courted by men of learning and 
taste. Yet he knew well how to simphfy his style 
to the humblest capacity, when circumstances re- 
quired, and sometimes the untutored Indian wept 
and trembled, at hearing from his Ups the first sounds 
of salvation. Thus he continued abundant in labor, 
and faithful in doctrine, fourteen years, as colleague 
with the Rev. Mr. Hooker, and sixteen after his 
death. 

The approach of the destroyer of his earthly ta- 
bernacle occasioned no dismay. " Heaven," he said, 
" is the more desirable, since such men as Hooker 
and Shepherd have taken up their abode there." 
On the 20th of July, 1663, he quietly fell asleep, 
lamented and beloved. 

He wrote much, but published few of his composi- 
tions. Mention is made by the ecclesiastical histo- 



REV. SAMUEL STONE. 69 

rians of that day, of an elaborate body of divinity 
written by him, parts of which were sometimes 
transcribed by candidates for the ministry, anxious 
to enrich themselves from his treasures of theology. 
Other works of his are alluded to, by cotemporary 
divines. 

A plain monument erected to his memory in the 
burial place adjoining the Central Congregational 
Church in Hartford, (Connecticut,) is still in a good 
state of preservation, though the tempests of more 
than 160 years have beaten against it ; and its epitaph 
characterizes him in the quaint dialect of the age, as 

"New England's glory and her radiant crown." 



BLAISE PASCAL 



Pascal, one of the greatest geniuses and finest 
writers that France ever produce(], was 

1623. born at Clermont, in Auvergne, 1623. 
His father quitted a hicrative and honora- 
ble public ofRce, that he might devote himself wholly 
to the education of his son, who never had any 
other instructor. Almost in infancy he gave proofs 
of a very uncommon capacity, for he desired to 
know the reason of everytliing, and if sufficient rea- 
sons were not adduced would seek for better ; re- 
fusing to yield his assent but to such as appeared 
well grounded. His father, who mingled religious 
instructions with his studies, feared that his peculiar 
turn of mind would lead to scepticism, but he 
evinced a deep reverence for the truths of Christi- 
anity, and seemed to distinguish between those 
things which were objects of faith, and those which 
were subject to the reasoning powers. " Our free- 
thinkers," said he, " are a sort of people who know 
not the nature of faith, but are possessed with this 
false principle, that human reason is above all 
things." 

He displayed in childhood such a strong predi- 
lection for mathematics, that his father feared it 
might retard his progress in the languages, and 



BLAISE PASCAL. Tt 

locked up all his books in that science. But he 
would still rnuso upon geometrical proportions, and 
was one day surprised at work, with charcoal upon 
his chamber floor, and in the midst of figures, 
" What are you doing?" inquired his father. " I am 
searching," said the boy, " for a demonstration ;" — 
which was found to be the 32d proposition of the 
first book of Euclid. His father afterwards in- 
dulged him in his mathematical pursuits,^ convinced 
that it was impossible to divert his self-taught genius 
from its favorite channel. 

At 16, he wrote a treatise on conic sections, 
.which was considered by the learned, as a mighty 
effort of the human mind ; and at 19, invented a 
highly celebrated arithmetical machine, and tried 
many novel philosophical experiments on the Ter- 
niceilian tube. With his profound knowledge he 
mingled an easy and agreeable address, great mod- 
esty, and a native eloquence which was almost irre- 
sistible. 

When he reached his 24th year, he laid aside the 
mathematical and philosophical studies in which he 
had so eminendy distinguished himself, and resolv- 
ed to spend the remainder of his time in retirement, 
and to devote his talents to the cause of piety and 
virtue. He employed himself much in prayer, and in 
reading the holy Scriptures, and in those exercises 
found the greatest comfort and delight. He used ta 
say, " that the sacred Scriptures were not so much 
adapted to the head as to the heart of man ; that 
they were intelligible only to those who possessed 
rectitude of heart, and to all others were obscure 
and uninteresting." ' 

His cliarity to tlie poor was remarkably exten- 



72 BIOGRAPHY OF PIOUS PERSONS. 

sive ; he gave alms even out of his own neces- 
sary subsistence. Persons of distinction frequent- 
ly visited him in his retirement, to consult him on 
religious subjects, and while they revered his piety 
and wisdom, they admired his humility and simplici- 
ty. A striking picture of the mind of this good 
man is contained in a few sentences which were 
found among his papers after his decease. " I re- 
spect poverty, because Jesus Christ respected it ; 
I respect riches because they furnish the mean^ of 
relieving the distressed. I do not return evil to 
those who have done me an injury. I endeavor to 
be sincere and faithful to all men, but 1 have a pe- 
culiar tenderness towards those with whom God has 
caused me to be intimately cormected. Whether I 
am alone or in company, I consider myself as in 
the sight of God, who will judge my actions, and 
to whom I consecrate them all. These are my 
sentiments ; — and I daily bless my Redeemer who 
has impressed them on me ; and who by the opera- 
tion of his grace has taken away the concupiscence, 
pride, ambition, and misery, to which I was natu- 
rally subject. I owe my deliverance to his power 
and goodness, having nothing of myself but imbe- 
cility and corruption." 

Among his various literary work^ he had project- 
ed one against atheists and infidels, but before he 
could digest the materials he had collected, he was 
attacked by a lingering distemper, which eventually 
terminated his life. From his youth he had been 
much afflicted with sickness, and from the 19th year 
of his age had never passed a day without pain. 
But he' bore' all without a murmur, and even with 
cheerfulness, and during his last illness his deport- 



BLAISE PASCAL. 7$ 

ment was at once astonishing, edifying, and con- 
solatory to his friends. " I know," said he, " the dan- 
gers of health, and the advantages of sickness. 
When we are ill, we are exempt from many of the 
passions which disturb our health ; we are without 
ambition, without avarice, and in continual expecta- 
tion of death. We have nothing to do bnt to sub- 
mit, humbly, and peacefully. For this reason, all I 
ask of God is to beseech him to grant me this fa- 
vor." 

He died in 1662, aged 39. His last words were 
— " May God never forsake me," and he departed 
full of peace and hope. In a prayer, composed 
near the close of his life, he says, " I pray not that 
thou wouldst give me either health or sickness, life- 
or death, but that thou wouldst dispose of my health, 
my sickness, my Ufe and my death for thy glory, 
and for my own eternal welfare. Thou alone 
knowest what is expedient for me, thou art my sove- 
reign Master and Lord : guide and govern me at 
thy pleasure." 

The celebrated Bayle, speaking of this distin-- 
guished person, says, " A hundred volumes of reli- 
gious discourses are not of so much avail to con- 
found the impious, as a simple account of the life 
of Pascal. His humility and devotion mortify the 
libertine more than if they were attacked by a doz- 
en Missionaries : — for they can no longer assert 
that piety is confined to men of little minds, when 
they behold the highest degree of it in a geometri- 
cian of the first rank, a most acute metaphysician, 
and one of the most penetrating minds that ever 
<^xi8ted." 

6* ' 



THE COUNTESS OF SUFFOLK* 



She was the second daughter of the Earl of Hol- 
land, born in the year 1627, and married very 
young, to Theophilus, Earl of Suffolk. 

1627. Her powers of imagination, judgment 
and memory, were extraordinary : in the 
latter particular she was so happy, that she frequent- 
ly committed to writing on Monday, the sentnon 
she heard the preceding Lord's day, and nearly in 
the very words of the preacher. She had a remark- 
able government of her passions, and it was ob- 
served that she was unskilful in manifesting displeas- 
ure, if the subject that excited it was of a temporal 
nature ; but a profane or indecent expression would 
lead her to reprove the offenders, if acquainted with 
them ; if strangers, she would often show her dis- 
gust by retiring. 

She was frank and confiding in friendship, gentle 
to her inferiors, and affable to all. She was willing 
to make any sacrifice for those she esteemed, and 
nothing was more distressing to her, than to be com- 
pelled to doubt the merit of those who had once 
possessed her good opinion. She was tender to 
the errors of her servants, and, if virtuous and 
faithful, treated them as humble friends. None 
had a more correct estimation of relative duties, or 



THB COUNTESS OF SUFFOLK. 75 

discharged them more faithfully. Her husband, 
parents, kindred, friends, servants, neighbors — all 
were witnesses of this truth. 

If these are but moral virtues, there was every 
reason to beUeve that in her they flowed from a ren- 
ovated heart. Hence her love and regard to the 
truth, which in every situation of life, led her to 
meet any danger auid ridicule rather than violate in- 
tegrity. Hence also her active benevolence, — for 
her soul seemed composed of Christian kindness 
and compassion. The poor whom she knew, need- 
ed not to come to her for aid ; she sent clothing, 
food, medicine, and other comforts to their habita- 
tions, and provided houses for those who had none. 
She often visited them to acquaint herself more 
particularly with their persons and wants ; and if 
any iiitieated her charily when she was irom home, 
and happened to be unprovided, she would borrow 
from her friends to supply them. 

Her charity extended beyond their temporal 
wants ; she endeavored to relieve and instruct their 
minds, by admonishing the careless, and counsel- 
ling the scrupulous ; at the same time oHering her 
daily prayers on their behalf. She distributed her 
bounty kindly, and without ostentation. The poor 
and distressed, whom she had so often r<'licved, be- 
wailed at her death, as for a lost parent, and long 
after thanklully recognized her generosity. 

In another species of charily, she was exempla- 
ry — that of forgiving injuries, which whether they 
■arose from mistake or malice, she was ever ready 
to pardon and forget. Though her memory on oth- 
er subjects was very tenacious, here she seemed 
to have no recollection at all. Benefits and favors 



76 BIOGRAPHY OF I'lOUS PERSONS. 

were never effaced from her iriind ; but unkindness, 
though it might for the time make a deep impression 
upon her susceptilile spirit, was never returned by 
any similar act. 

She possessed a strong faith in the merits of a 
Redeemer, and a lively hope of immortality. Some- 
times the tenderness ol" her conscience would awa- 
ken fears, which she conquered by self-recollection 
and humble pruyer. In times of sorrow, faith and 
patience were her support. When her only son 
was in the agonies of death, she sal down almost 
exhausted, having poured out many prayers and 
tears. When she found that he had indeed gone, 
she gave a momentary vent to grief, and then took 
her Bible, and applied herself to the singing of 
Psalms, till the violence of emotion had subsided, 
and her soul was brought into tranquil submission 
lo the will of God. 

The lovely grace of humility was observable in 
all her actions. It was like a robe covering her 
from head to fool, through which her itmumerable 
excellences shone with an improved lustre. She 
suffered none of the noble talents of her mind to 
slumber in indolence. She remembered who had 
given them, and who would require them again. — 
J;>very day was begun, and closed with prayer. As 
soon as she awoke, she went into her closet, and 
performed her customary devotions, reading at the 
same time her portion in the Bible which consisted 
of the psalms appointed for the day of the month, 
and six chapters beside ; intending by this course to 
read the Bible twice in a year. This method she 
began at the age of 15, and continued regularly 
till her deatli, and if any circumstance compelled 



THE CODNTE88 OF SUFFOLK. 77 

her to shorten her usual portion, she proportionably 
increased the number of chapters, at her next read- 
ing season. 

She was methodical, as well as diligent in im- 
proving her time ; carefully allotting proper hours 
to business, repasts and reading. In her daily 
course of the Scriptures, she allowed a portion of 
time to examine difficult passages by notes, and in- 
terpreters. Many other books of divinity likewise 
shared her attention, and administered to her in- 
struction. She delighted much in the Sabbath, and 
other seasons for devotion, especially in the prepa- 
ration for the Sacrament. In this ordinance she 
endeavored frequently to participate, and found it a 
great assistance to her piety. She was very atten- 
tive during preaching, and often repeated to her 
family what she remembered of the sermons. 

liike many true believers she was for a time sub- 
ject to spiritual doubts, but it pleased God to deliver 
her from them, and to grant her an increase of con- 
fidence and comfort. Her whole Ufe might be 
styled a scene of preparation for death ; and appre- 
hending its approach during an illness that afflicted 
her, she entreated her friends to reveal her real con- 
dition to her, without reserve. They confessed 
that their hopes of her life were small, and that dis- 
solution seemed gradually approaching. 

At this she discovered neither terror or reluctance, 
but sending for her near relatives and friends, with a 
countenance solemn and serene took an affection- 
ate leave of them. She gave them benedictions, 
counsels smd prayers, adapted to each, especially 
her husband, children and servants, tending to di- 
rect them in the way of well-doing, that so she 



78' BIOSRAPHY OF PIOUS PEllSOMS. 

might meet them again in glory. With such affec- 
tion and zeal did she warn, and advise them, and 
such assurances did she give them that she was go- 
ing from pains and miseries to celestial rest, that the 
remembrance of her words, and the image of her 
serene aspect could never be efiaced from their 
minds. She seemed like Moses on Mount Pisgah, 
or Uke Jacob on his last couch distributing bles- 
sings. One who should have seen her dearest 
friends and relatives full of tears and lamentations, 
and herself unmoved, counselhng, comforting, and 
blessing them, would have been ready to think that 
they were to die, and that she was giving them 
Christian exhortation and comfort. Her confidence 
in God, and her spiritual joy were such, that the an- 
ticipation of death seemed to give her a taste of the 
happiness of the life to come. 

The legacy she left to her two dear children was, 
her desire to their father, that whatever outward 
provision he made for them, for which she was not 
anxious, they might be educated in the strictest way 
of religion : this she had found best for herself in 
life ; and at death she recommended it to those 
whom she most tenderly loved. Yet alter approach- 
ing the confines of Death, looking him calmly in the 
face, and tranquilly surveying all his terrors, it pleas- 
ed the Almighty to bring her again I'rom the pit of 
darkness, and continue her in life, very unexpected- 
ly, for six months hmger. 

This miracle, as it appeared, was an instance of 
the greatest mercy to another, and it seemed that 
she was restored, for a great and necessary work. 
Her father. Earl Hidland, was about this time ar- 
raigned before the High Court erected by Farlia- 



THE COUNTESS 6f 8DFFOLK. 79 

ment, and condemned to die. In this affliction he 
received inexpressible comfort from his pious daugh- 
ter, whom it seemed as if Providence had brought for 
his sake from the brink of the grave. When all 
hof>es of hia hfe were banished, she frequently 
visited him in prison, and watched all night in a room 
adjoining his, that she might be near him in the 
morning. In conversing on rehgion, she propos- 
ed such prudent and searching questions, so judi- 
ciously applied both law and gospel, so gently wound- 
ed, and then so kindly endeavored to heal, that be- 
ing at length much comforted, he exclaimed, "Hap- 
py am I, that I should receive from a child of my 
own, such consolation." To a divine who visited 
him, he said, " I thank God, that I have a child 
who is able to be my counsellor in all my doubts." 

The distressing stroke of his execution she bore 
>vith much Christiati patience, acknowledging it to 
be the wise method of Almighty God, to bestow 
mercy on a soul, which, had it been exempted from 
so great a calamity, find still conversant with scenes 
of prosperity mv\ temptation, might never so ear- 
nestly and humbly have sought him. She declared, 
that, thinking as she thought, she could not, even il' 
it were lawful, wish him alive again ; she dared not 
desire for him so bad an exchange as to leave heav- 
en for earth. Yet it was known by all, that her af- 
fection for him had been uncommonly tender and 
strong. 

She told a friend, that now, if God would give 
her leave, she would retire into the country, having, 
as she said, so disposed her family and business, 
that she had nothing to do, but to die. Those who 
had opportimity to know, observed, that during the 



80 BIOGRAPHY OF PIOUS PERSONS. 

six months which succeeded her dangerous sickness 
there was not a night in which she rose from her 
closet devotions without an overflowing of tears. — 
And now her work being done, Death approached 
to claim her corruptible part. A few days before 
her departure, her intellect was aflfected ; but in one 
of her lucid intervals, she poured out her soul in a 
comprehensive prayer ; pleading before God, his 
name, his attributes, his mercies, the mediation of 
his Son, and his promises, which she drew from ev- 
ery part of his word. 

This seemed her last considerable interval of 
reason, except that after her strength was spent, 
she recognized her friends when they came to her, 
signified her assurance of an interest in Christ, and 
joined attentively in their prayers. About an hour 
after, in a quiet sleep, she yielded her spirit to her 
God, May 10th, 1649, in the 22d year of her age ; 
most tenderly lamented by her friends, to whom she 
had been inexpressibly dear and delightful. She 
was early fitted for heaven, and early received to 
the participation of celestial joys. 



THE COITKTESS OF WARWICK. 



This lady was the daughter of Richard Boyle, the 
first Earl of Cork, who began the world with Uttle ex- 
cept an unblemished character, and left at 

1 630. his death an immense estate to his children. 
He was originally a private gentleman, 
the younger son of a younger brother, and had no 
other patrimony than what was expressed in his 
motto — *' God's providence is my inheritance." His 
persevering exertions were crowned wath a state of 
opulence and honor, yet he still retained the motto 
which he had adopted in his poverty, and caused to 
be writen on his principal buildings and inscribed on 
his tonil) — " God's providence is my inheritance." 
One of his numerous sons was the philosopher, 
Robert Boyle, a man equally distinguished by ge- 
nius, learning and piety ; a bright ornament to re- 
ligion, and to human nature. 

The subject of these memoirs was a daughter, 

who early in life became the consort of the Earl of 

Warwick. The powers of her mind were strong, 

and assisted by a regular and pious education ; but 

though her conduct was circumspect and amiable, 

she confessed that she knew nothing of the life and 

power of religion in the heart, till after her arrival 

ut maturity. She acknowledged that she entered 
7 ^ - 



82 BIOGRAPHY OF PIOUS PERSONS. 

her husband's family, with erroneous ideas of reli- 
gion, and strong prejudices eigainst it ; but the true 
devotion she saw there, the excellent preaching she 
heard, and the amiable tenderness of her illustrious 
father-in-law, were effectual in removing her dan- 
gerous prepossessions. Afflictions, and occasional 
retirement were also blessed to her, and served to 
detach her thoughts from the follies and pleasures 
of the world. 

After this happy change in her sentiments and 
feelings, she became remarkable for gravity, humility 
and circumspection, and for a seraphic zeal to pro- 
mote the interests of religion. It seemed the great 
object of her life to show forth the praises of Him 
who had called her from darkness into marvellous 
light. She regularly kept a diary, in which she re- 
corded the frame of her heart, remarkable providen- 
ces towards herself and others, answers of prayer, 
spiritual comforts, temptations prevailing or resisted, 
and whatever else might be useful for caution or en- 
couragement, humiliation or gratitude. 

Prayer, she used to style " the ease of the heart," 
and such it was to her. She was not only constant 
in this duty, but so fervent, that when she used not 
an audible voice, her sighs and groans were fre- 
quently overheard from her closet. Prayer was the 
element in which she lived and died ; the vital 
breath of her soul which eventually wafted it to 
heaven. She walked two hours every morning for 
serious meditation, in which important duty she was 
a great proficient; sometimes employing her thoughts 
on particular subjects, at others extracting mental 
improvement from accidental occurrences. Vol- 
umes of this kind she left behind her in manuscript. 



THE COUNTESS OF WARWICK. 83 

and the parts that have been published do equal 
honor to her head and her heart. 

She kept the Sabbath with exemplary strictness, 
as the best preservative to the life of religion. She 
was a devout communicant, and prepared for the re- 
newal of her covenant with fasting and prayer. If 
she had a particular interest in any whom she ap- 
prehended destitute of religion, she would employ 
the authority of friendship, and the persuasive pow- 
ers of her own eloquence, to plead the cause of 
their own eternal salvation. She studiously kept 
herself disengaged from sects and parties, that 
none might suspect her of a design to make pro- 
selytes to any but to God. 

That she might recommend piety to others, she 
endeavored to make it appear in its most amiable 
and alluring form. To an engaging deportment, 
she added, the attractive charms of Christian meek- 
ness, courtesy and benevolence. Her discourse 
in company was both interesting and profitable, and 
she evinced great dexterity in giving it an insensible 
turn towards moral and serious subjects. She 
took great care of the souls of her servants, and it 
was her ambition to be the mistress of a religious 
family. This appeared in exacting their attendance, 
and reverent behaviour, at the public worship of 
God, — in personal instruction and familiar persua- 
sion, — in seriously endeavoring to prepare them for 
the Sacrament and exhorting them to partake of it 
frequently, — in dispersing good books in all com- 
mon rooms and places of attendance, that those in 
waiting might have profitable employment, — and in 
making religion in her servants, the criterion of her 
esteem. She treated them all as friends, but those 
who most feared the Ijord, were her favorites. 



84 BIOGRAPHY OF PIOUS PERSONS. 

Neither was she inattentive to their temporal 
interests ; for she seemed to find as much satisfac- 
tion in pleasing them, as the best servants have in 
pleasing their superiors. She delighted to render 
their hves easy, and free from discontent, that so 
they might serve God with cheerfulness. She ex- 
tended her generous care to the period in which 
their earthly connection should be dissolved, and 
left them legacies of 2, 3 and 400/. with the 
wages of a full year, and permission to remain at 
her house, three months, as in her life, that they 
might have sufficient time to seek other commodi- 
ous situations. 

She spared no pains to accommodate her tenants,^ 
and, if any of them sustained material losses, was 
accustomed to deduct them from their rent. No 
inconvenience could ever make her recede from 
obligations into which she had entered, or even from 
intimated promises, if she found the expectations 
of others were excited by them. 

With this sacred regard for truth, she coupled 
the divine injunction, " speak evil of no man." 
She would extenuate the failingsof others, by bring- 
ing into view the brighter parts of their character, 
and where she could not commend, was silent. 

To her parents she was a pattern of duty and 
respect ; — as a sister, inexpressibly tender and en- 
dearing ; as a friend, affectionate, unsuspicious 
and faithful. Her excellence as a mother, ajipear- 
ed in the education of her son, a promising youth, 
who died before her ; and in the instruction of three 
young ladies, whom she adopted, and to whom she 
was a mother in the best sense of the word. As a 
\vife, it may be truly said that " the heart of her 



THE COUNTESS OF WARWICK. 85 

husband safely trusted in her, and she did him good, 
and not evil, all the days of her life." She hved 
under a constant and impressive sense of the cov- 
enant of God which was between them ; mingUng- 
uncommon tenderness and affection with a conduct 
uniformly complying. She concealed his infirmi- 
ties, sympathized in his indispositions, and attended 
him with the greatest kindness. Above all she 
loved his soul ; fervently praying for him, and coun- 
selling him with mingled zeal and prudence. 

Among other testimonials of esteem and gratitude, 
he gave her, by will, his whole estate, and left her 
his sole executrix. This arduous task she discharg- 
ed with such attention, prudence and accuracy, as 
more than satisfied all who were concerned, and 
this event she acknowledged, as a visible, and distin- 
guishing mercy. During the life of Earl Warwick, 
she had a stated yearly allowance, and anxiously 
inquired of her minister, what portion of their sub- 
stance he supposed people were bound to conse- 
crate to the poor. On liis suggesting a seventh 
part, she immediately answered that she could not 
think of less than a third ; and this proportion she 
accordingly set apart for charitable uses. 

The most pressing exigencies of a different kind 
never induced her to infringe on this dedicated sum, 
though she often borrowed from the remainder of 
her property to increase it ; and anticipated her in- 
comes rather tlian restrain her hberality. 

When she came into possession of the large es- 
tate bequeatlied her by her husband, her manage- 
ment of it confirmed the truth of the remark uttered 
by a person of high eminence, " that the Earl of 
Warwick had given all his estate to piow i«e»." 
7* 



86 BIOGRAPHY OK PIOUS PERSONS. 

She seemed to have no satisfaction in great posses- 
sions but that of doing extensive good ; and fre- 
quently declared that she would not be incumbered 
with the largest estate in England on any other con- 
ditions. That her charity was judicious as well as 
generous, appears from the objects on which she 
bestowed it : — 

1. Persons, really in want, whom the remem- 
brance of better days, or a native modesty and del- 
icacy prevented from complaining of their necessi- 
ties. Such she liberally relieved, without solicitation, 
and with such gentleness and meekness as seemed 
to express a desire to gain their pardon, rather than 
deserve thanks. 

2. Foreigners, who in those days of calamity 
fled from their native country to preserve their per- 
secuted religion. To these she evinced that she 
honored the goodness of their cause, and found 
pleasure in tenderly administering to their neces- 
sities. 

3. Scholars of promising dispositions and capa- 
cities, but of slender resources, whom she educated 
in great numbers at the universities, allowing them 
at the same time an annual sum of 20 or 30/. as 
she supposed their needs required. 

4. Poor children ; — whom, if she could persuade 
to learn, she placed at school in neighboring towns, 
not only paying for their instruction, but supj)lying 
them with books and clothing. This noble charity 
she exercised not only near home, but even the dis- 
tant regions of Wales, shared liberally in her bounty. 

6. Ministers of every denomination, whose liv- 
ings were uicompetent to support their families with 
(lecopcy. 



THE COUNTESS OF WARWICK. 87 

6. Occasional applicants of almost every cha- 
racter ; and though sometimes deceived and abused 
in such cases, she was not deteri'ed from giving ; 
often saying, " I would rather relieve ten who ap- 
j>ear proper objects, and are not, than to let one in 
real distress go unreUeved ; for if tliey deceive mo 
in giving, God will not deceive me in accepting what 
is sincerely done for his name's sake. 

7. The poor around her whom she knew. These 
she fed in great numbers, not with fragments, but 
with generous supplies purposely provided. She 
suppUed them with medicines, pesonally visited the 
meanest of them, to converse with, to instruct, and 
to comfort them. Her love and compassion for 
them was unbounded. Twice a week she provided 
bread and beef for the poor of" four adjacent pa- 
rishes ; and ordered in her will that the same bounty 
should be continued after her death, and a hundred 
pounds distributed to the poor of four other pa- 
rishes. 

This was the amiable, the noble, the exemplary 
life of the Countess of Warwick. " Give her of 
the fruits of her hands, and let her own works praise 
her in the gates." — From a passage in her diary, 
written the last Lord's day of her health, it appears 
that she had some impressions of her approaching 
dissolution. The Tuesday following she was seized 
with an iiulisposition from which she never recovered. 
She discoursed with great cheerfulness ; and the 
last sentence she was heard to utter, was to some 
friends who surrounded her, as she drew the curtains 
of her bed — " If I were but one hour in heaven, I 
would not be again with you, as much as I love 
you." — Soon after, having proposed prayer, she. 



88 BIOGRAPHY OF PIOUS PERSONS. 

almost as soon as it was begun, heaved a sigh as 
she sat in her chair, turned pale, and immediately 
expired ; according to her own often repeated re- 
quest — " that if she might choose the manner and 
circumstances of her death, she would die pray- 
ing," — 

" A soul prcpar'd needs no delays, 
The summons comes, the saint obeys ; — 
Swift was her flight, and short the road, 
She clos'd her eyes, and saw her God." 



REV. PHILIP HE]!CRY. 



Philip Henry was born at Whitehall, (West- 
minster) on Wednesday, August 24th, 1631. His 

father had the office of keeper of the 
1631. Orchard, and attendant upon the king's 

second son, James Duke of York. He 
was very sincere in his attachment to the unfortu- 
nate Charles First, and a deep mourner for his un- 
timely death. A little anecdote is recorded, illus- 
trative of his constant and fearless affection. The 
im|>risoned monarch, insulted and despised, going 
under guard to his trial at Westminster, passed the 
door of this faithful attendant, who was eager to 
present him his affectionate respects, and in spite of 
the menaces of the guard prayed fervently that 
'< God would bless his Majesty." This must have 
been soothing to the heart of him who suffered ma- 
ny insults, " on whose visage every eye did scowl, 
and no tongue cried, God save him." 

The mother of the subject of these memoirs, was 
of the family of Rochdales, in Westminster. She 
was a woman of great virtue and piety, though her 
lot was cast among the vanities and temptations of 
a court She was careful to instruct her children in 



90 BIOGRAPHY OF PIOUS PERSONS. 

the precepts and practice of religion, catechised 
them, and not satisfied with praying tor theni^ daily 
prayed with them. Observing in this her only son, 
early^ inclinations to learning and piety, she solemn- 
ly devoted him in his tender years to the service of 
God in the vi^ork of the ministry. To the close of 
his life he was accustomed to express peculiar grat- 
itude to Heaven for the benefit of such a parent, 
who poured pious instruction upon his unformed 
mind, and unceasingly solicited for him the dews of 
divine grace. After some time spent in the study 
of the languages, he was received into Westminster 
school in the fourth form ; then into the upjier school 
under the celebrated Dr. Busby ; then to the honor 
of King's Scholar. 

At his mother's request he was permitted to at- 
tend a daily lecture, established by seven pious min- 
isters of the assembly of Divines. This, which he 
attended without any abatement of his school exer- 
cises, was the instrument of much good to his 
young mind. At the age of eleven years he began 
the practice of writing what he could recollect from 
the Sermons he heard, continued it until the decay 
of his sight, a little previous to his death, and recom- 
mended it to others, as a method of fixing the atten- 
tion, strengthening the memory, and assisting seri- 
ous meditation. 

But while he was prosecuting his studies with 
diligence and success, the all-wise Providence of 
God was preparing to write him an orphan. His 
mother lay upon the couch of languishing, and in 
the midst of her sufferings was heard to exclaim — 
" my head is in heaven ; my heart is in heaven : — 
one step more, and I shall be there also." On the 



REV. PHILIP HENRT. 91 

6th of March, 1645, she departed ; — and to her chil- 
dren was fulfilled what the strong faith of the Psalm- 
ist once affirmed, " when my father and my mother 
forsake me, then the Lord will take me up." 

Two years after, Philip Henry, in the sixteenth 
year of his age, publicly gave himself up to God, 
and joined in covenant with his people. On this 
solemn occasion he writes — " there had been trea- 
ties before, between my soul and Jesus Christ ; but 
then confessing my sins, casting away all my trans- 
gressions, receiving him as my righteousness, dedi- 
cating myself absolutely and unreservedly to his fear 
and service, and then coming to this ordinance, there 
1 received him indeed, and he became mine : — / 
say mine." lie mentions with gratitude. Dr. Bus- 
by's careful attention for some time previous in ex- 
plaining the nature of the ordinance, exciting to se- 
rious preparation, and appointing religious exercises, 
instead of the customary scholastic ones, — " for 
which," writes the young communicant, " tlie Lord 
recompense a thousand fold into his bosom." 

In December, 1647, he was entered a student at 
Christ's College, Oxford, and addressed himself 
vigorously to its peculiar studies. He was on a 
visit at London, when Charles First was beheaded, 
and with a mournful, heart witnessed that tragical 
scene. He noticed that at the instant the fatal blow 
was struck, such a dismal and universal groan arose 
from ihe thousands surrounding the scaffold, as he 
never before heard, and had not power to describe : 
and that immediately the soldiers came marching in 
separate bodies, according to previous orders, to 
disperse the people, and to scatter their distressing 
thoughts by forcuig them to seek their own safety. 



92 BIOGRAPHY OF PIOUS PERSONS. 

He returned, and resumed his University studies, 
and was favored with many advantages, for obtain* 
ing both classical and religious instruction. 

Some of his contemporary students used to asso- 
ciate for the purposes of prayer, and religious con- 
ference, which were blest to their preparation for the 
future duties of the ministry. He received his de- 
grees of Bachelor, and Master of Arts, and answer- 
ed the Latin philosophical questions with great ap- 
plause. A copy of Latin verses of his, is printed 
among the Oxford university poems, which confer 
on him that reputation as a poet which he had before 
gained as an orator. Soon after taking his degree 
of Master of Arts he preached his first sermon from 
John viii. 34. " Whosoever committeth sin is the 
servant of sin," and the Christian hearers rejoiced 
that he could so willingly lay aside the enticing 
words of man's wisdom for the purity and simplicity 
of the gospel. Yet notwithstanding his diligence, 
his attainments and reputation, humility led him to 
perceive and lament lost time and neglected oi)por- 
tunities, and in one of his visits to the place of his 
education, he inserts in his diary, — " a tear dropt 
over my university sins." 

At leaving Oxford he was requested to preach 
as a candidate in the church of Worthenburg, and 
to officiate as chaplain and private tutor in the family 
of Judge Puleston, the most pious and influential 
man in those parts. His constant exertions in this 
new sphere of usefulness, his amiable and exem- 
plary conduct, so gained him the friendship of his 
patron, that he cunfinncd to him the lease ol" a 
house erected purposely for him, and the sum ol" 
100/. a year while he should continue the minister 



REV. PHILIP HENRY. 93 

of Worthenburg. On the 16th of Sept. 1667, 
he was publicly ordained in the parish church, and 
entered on the work of his ministry. 

The sphere was narrow and confined for such a 
burning and shining light, the number of commu- 
nicants was only 41, and the congregation princi- 
pally composed of poor tenants and laborers, but 
the souls of such, he would say, " were precious in 
the sight of God," and he carefully and affection- 
ately performed his duty towards them, refusing the 
offers that were made him, which might have flatter- 
ed his ambition and promoted his secular interest. 

In labors he was abundant : beside preaching, 
he expounded the Scriptures in order, catechised 
and explained the Catechism, receiving into the 
number of his Catechumens, adults as well as chil- 
dren, because he perceived that they needed instruc- 
tion. He established a monthly lecture of two ser- 
mons ; and a conference, where he encouraged famil- 
iar discourse of spriritual things, that he might better 
understand the state of his flock, and adapt his ser- 
mons and prayers to their individual cases. He 
was very diligent in visiting the sick, instructing 
them, and praying with them ; and in this service 
said, " he aimed at the good, not only of those 
who were sick, but also of the relations and 
friends that were ai)Out them." He [>reached fune- 
ral sermons lor all who were buried there, of what- 
ever rank or age, for he considered it a time to scat- 
ter the good seed of the word, when Providence 
had softened the heart for its reception. In his 
preaching and adininistnition of i>rdinances, he «a.s 
plain and atlectionute, laying u^mlo his great learu- 
8 



94 BIOGRAPHY OF PIOUS PERSONS. 

ing, that he might suit the capacities of the unlearn- 
ed, and win souls to Christ. 

His diary records the affections and emotions of 
his soul, whether in his study, closet or pulpit, for 
he kept his heart with all diligence. " For three 
things he was remarkable," says a writer of those 
times ; " great piety and devotion, and much savor 
of them in his conversation ; great industry in the 
pursuit of useful knowledge ; great self-denial and 
eminent humihty, which cast a lustre upon his other 
graces : and though like all zealous servants of 
Jesus Christ he was not without opposers, yet the 
vox j)opuli fastened upon him the epithet of Heav^ 
enly Henry. 

He would receive no compensation for any min- 
isterial services, except his stated salary, which he 
had agreed to accept of the Puleston family in lieu 
of the usual tithe : yet of his little portion he con- 
stantly laid by a tenth part for the poor, adopting 
the words of Daniel, " of thine own. Lord, have 
we given thee." 

Afler finding him so faithful in the concerns of oth- 
ers, entrusted to his care, let us view him in the man- 
agement of his own ; in his house and his family, 
for there the hearts of men are most successfully 
developed. He selected as a partner for life, Cath- 
arine, the only child of Mr. Daniel Matthews of 
Broad Oak, and on the 26th of April, 1660, entered 
into the holy bonds of matrimony. In this design 
he had carefully sought the direction of God in 
prayer, fearing without his guidance, to take a step 
which might materially influence his temporal and 
eternal happiness. The day previous to his mar- 
riage, he devoted to secret prayer and fasting, and 



REV. PHILIP HENRV. 96 

God was pleased to bless an union so religiously be- 
gun. His diary often records his great satisfaction in 
this choice, and his fervent thanks to the Almighty 
who had given him " an helper and a Comforter." 

He was now found exemplary in family religion, 
and would often say, "we are really what we 
are relatively ; it is not so much what we are at 
church, as what we are in our families." He be- 
lieved the secret duties of the closet to have a great 
eflect upon the conduct of life, and was very faithful 
in their performance. Merely upon the occasion 
of removing his closet from one room to another, 
he records this request in his daily journal : " This 
day my new closet was consecrated by prayer ; and 
may all the prayers that shall ever be made in it, 
according to the will of God, morning, evening, and 
at noon, ordinary or extraordinary, be accepted of 
him, and obtain a gracious answer." Beside se- 
cret prayer, he and his consort constantly prayed 
together, morning and evening, without a single 
omission when they were together, either at home 
or abroad. This he would recommend to others, 
from his own experience of its benefit, adding that 
those who were thus united were bound to do all 
in their power to help each other to heaven, and 
that they were thus excited to " live together aa 
heirs of the grace of life, that their prayers be not 
hindered." 

When abroad or on journeys he accidentally 
lodged with his friends, he constantly reminded 
them, that " those who sleep together, should pray 
together," and in this performance of duty was 
usually short but often much afi'ected. Many to 
whom he gave this advice and example, have bles- 



96 BIOGRAPHY OF PIOUS PERSONS. 

sed God for him, and for his instructions. Family 
worship in all its parts he performed conscientious- 
ly from the day he was first called to the charge of 
a house, till the day of his release from earth. 
He attended it early in the morning, before the in- 
trusion and hurry of worldly concerns, and also 
early in the evening before the children and servants 
retired. He would tell those who complained they 
could not find time for it, that if they would arm 
themselves with Christian resolution, other difficulties 
would vanish, that it was a great preserver of order 
and decency in a family, and would bring a blessing 
upon them, and their possessions. 

He was desirous that all under his roof should 
join with him, not only strangers and visitors, but 
workmen and day-laborers. His first exercise was 
a short but solemn prayer, imploring the divine pre- 
sence and blessing upon this his reasonable service, 
then the singing of a psalm, in which the whole 
family joined, then the reading and explanation of a 
portion of Scripture, of which his children were re- 
quired to give him an account, and afterwards to 
write, as a method of exciting their attention, 
strengthening their memories, and storing their minds 
with good things. Then followed his prayer in the 
midst of his kneeling family, his thanksgiving for 
their mercies, his confession of their sins, his inter- 
cession for needful blessings. He observed the 
custom of Job, who " offered burnt offerings for his 
children according to the number of them all," so 
he would often present a petition for each child, and 
always on the return of their respective birth days, 
would return thanks for them as a gift, and request 
renewed favors for them. For every servant, and 



REV. PHILIP HENRY. 97 

sojourner who entered or left the family, he would 
address a separate petition suited to their circum- 
stances. 

He was daily mindful of all who desired his 
prayers, and very careful to notice particular provi- 
dences ; concluding his morning and evening wor- 
ship, with a doxology and solemn benediction. Im- 
mediately after the service, his children together, 
with bended knee, came to entreat a blessing of 
him and their mother, and to desire them to pray 
to God to bless them. Their blessing was given 
with great solemnity and affection, always remem- 
bering any of them who might be absent — " The 
Lord bless you, and your brother, (or you and your 
sister) who is absent Thus did he daily bless his 
household, and with such fervor, such affection, 
such variety of service, that none said, what a wea- 
riness is it ; his family viewed it not as a task but 
a pleasure, and those accidentally present were 
constrained to say, " behold, how good and how 
pleasant it is for brethren so to dwell together in 
unity." 

On Sabbath evenings he was usually more full 
in prayer, soliciting a blessing upon the churches, 
and the outpouring of the Spirit universally, and 
was often observed to be absorbed in the work, as 
if he found the service its own reward, or (as it 
were,) dwelt for a time, like Moses, in the mount 
with God. On that day, he constantly sung a 
psalm after dinner, and after supper, beside those in 
the stated service, and in the evening examined his 
children and servants, in the sense and meaning of 
their Catechism, and heard them repeat what they 
could recollect of the sermons of the day. 
8* 



98 BIOGRAPHY OF PIOUS PERSONS. 

On Thursday evenings, he catechised them, ex- 
amined them in their knowledge of the useful books 
they had read, and of their acquauitance with the 
Scriptures. On Saturday evenings they rendered 
him an account of the several chapters they had 
heard him read and explain during the week. This 
he called gathering up the fragments that nothing 
might be lost ; and would sometimes say aftection- 
ately in the words of Christ to his disciples, " have 
ye understood all these things V and if not, he 
would explain them more fully, managing the 
whole exercise with so much prudence and sweet- 
ness, that with the knowledge of the Scriptures he 
instilled the love of them also. 

Thus was he the prophet and the priest of his 
own house, and he was a king there likewise, ruling 
in the wisdom and fear of God, and not suffering 
even the " appearance of evil." He had once a 
servant who was overtaken with intemperance 
abroad, for which the next morning at family wor- 
ship, he solemnly reproved him, admonished him, 
prayed for him with a spirit of meekness, ancl soon 
after dismissed him. But many of his servants, by 
the influence of Heaven upon his endeavors, receiv- 
ed abiding religious impressions, and blessed God 
that they ever came under his roof. Few went 
from his service till they were called to families of 
their own, and many who had buried their yoke- 
fellows, returned again to his service, saying, " Mas- 
ter, it is good for us to be here." 

His children, — for God had given him four 
daughters and two sons, — he brought up with un- 
speakable care and tenderness, being watchful 
never " to provoke them to wrath, or to discourage 



REV. PHILIP HENRY. 99 

them, but to hold them in the nurture and admoni- 
tion of the Lord." He indeed preserved his au- 
thority, but it was with wisdom and love, and not 
with an high hand, always allowing them freedom 
of discourse with him, that he might find the ave- 
nue to their hearts, and enter, bearing precious seed. 
He was their constant instructor, taught them all to 
write himself, and made them early record the 
memory of sermons, and other useful extracts. 
He taught his eldest daughter the Hebrew tongue, 
at the age of 6 or 7 years, by a Grammar which ho 
compiled for her, and she made such proficiency as 
to be able readily to read and construe a Hebrew 
Psalm. He sometimes employed them to write 
from the Scriptures whatever appeared to them 
forcible or impressive, and gave each of them a 
book to record what they thought remarkable in the 
volumes he selected for them to peruse. 

He not only taught his children to pray by his 
own example, but appointed them a part of every 
Saturday afternoon, to spend together, or with those 
of their age who might occasionally be there, in 
reading good books, singing and prayer, sometimes 
telling them for their encouragement, that the God 
whom they addressed, understood broken language ; 
and that if they offered the best they were able, in 
the sincerity of their hearts, they would not only be 
accepted, but taught to do better, " for unto him 
that hath (and useth what he hath) more shall be 
given." For their use he drew up the following 
concise covenant : — " I take God the Father to be 
my chief end and highest good. I take God the 
Son to bo my Prince and Saviour. I take God tho 
Holy Ghost to be my Sanctifier, Teacher, Guide 



100 BIOGRAPHY Of PIOUS PERSONS. 

and Comforter. I take the word of God to be the 
rule of all my actions. I take the people of God 
to be my people in all conditions. I do likewise 
devote and dedicate unto the TiOrd, my whole self, 
all I am, all I have, all I can do. And this I do, de- 
liberately, sincerely, freely, — forever." 

Thus each of his children solemnly repeated to 
him every Sabbath evening, and he labored to give 
them an understanding of it, and to persuade them 
to consent to it, not with the Ups only, but with the 
heart. When they arrived at years of discretion, 
each of them transcribed and very solemnly signed 
it, which he told them he would keep, and produce 
as a testimony against them, if they should depart 
from God, and despise his service. In reasoning 
with them of their spiritual state he would press 
upon their minds the circumstance of infant baptism, 
that they were dedicated to God, and bound to be 
his servants. " I am thy servant, and the son of 
thine handmaid." This he would illustrate by the 
comparison of taking a lease of a fair estate for a 
child in the cradle, who without capability of con- 
senting to the act, hath still a maintenance out of 
it, and an interest in it, with power to reject or con- 
firm the instrument when arrived at years of matu- 
rity. " Now, children, our great Landlord was 
willing that your lives should be put into the lease 
of heaven and happiness, and it was done accord- 
ingly by your baptism, which is the seal of righteous- 
ness by faith ; and by that it was assured to you, 
that if you would pay the rent and do the service, 
that is, live a life of faith, repentance and sincere 
obedience, you shall never be cast off'; but if you 
dislike the terms and refuse to pay the rent, — tor- 



REV. PHILIP HENRY. 101 

feit now the lease." Thus would he make plain to 
them the nature of this ordinance, and would some- 
times say to his friends — " if infant baptism were 
more improved, it would be less disputed." 

At the age of 16 his children approached the 
ordinance oi the Lord's Supper, and made that 
solemn covenant their own act and deed. Very 
great care he took to prepare them for that solemn 
event, and was repaid by their exemplary and pious 
conduct, and his labors in their education were so 
rendered effectual by the blessing of God, that they 
gave him inexpressible comfort, and when they were 
placed in families of their own, they walked in the 
steps of their teacher, as he also followed Christ. 
" Verily, he had no greater joy than to see his chil- 
dren walking in truth." 

Five of his children arrived at years of maturity, 
and were judiciously and happily disposed of in the 
world, when he was summoned to quit it, but his 
eldest son, a child of good parts, and most sweet 
disposition, died of the measles, at the age of six 
years. lie has left this short memorial of him, 
" Praeterque aetatem nil puerile fuit." This was 
a great affliction to the affectionate parents, and Mr. 
Henry writes in his diary, " Lord, shew mc where- 
fore thou contendcst with mc. Have I over boast- 
ed, over loved ? That child had been always very 
patient under rebukes, the remembrance of which 
teacheth me how to behave under the rebukes of my 
heavenly father. I have laid him in the cold earth : 
I shall go to him, but he shall not return to me." 
Many years after he writes, " This day fourteen 
years, the Lord took my first born son from me, 
the beginning of my strength, with a stroke. la 



102 BIOGRAPHY OF PIOUS PERSONS. 

memory whereof my heart melted this evening. 
1 bless the Lord that hath spared the rest, I entreat- 
ed mercy for every one of them, absolutely and un- 
reservedly dedicating them, myself, my whole self, 
estate, interest, life, to the will of Him, from whom 
I received all. Father, hallowed be thy name." 

When his only surviving son had attained his 
tenth year, he was seized with a lingering fever, and 
so reduced, that his life was despaired of, and death 
daily expected. The afflicted father, watching the 
agonies of a promising and beloved child, was 
sent for to preach at a considerable distance, and felt 
it his duty to leave him, though perhaps he j^hould 
see him alive no more on earth. He left his house 
very sad in spirit, performed the work that was as- 
signed him, returned, and his son still lived. " At 
such a place and time upon the road," said he, 
" I did most solemnly, freely and deliberately, re- 
sign my dear child to God, to do what he pleased 
with him and me." " And I believe, sir, (said an 
aged and pious friend who came to assist in their 
time of affliction) I believe, at that place and time, 
God gave him back to you again," for from that 
period he speedily and almost miraculously recover- 
ed. His eldest sister writes, " I was then a child 
of eight years, and could think but as a child, 
yet this discourse very much affected me, and 
tended to endear my brother more to me, who I 
believed was-given back to us in an extraordinary 
manner." 

This worthy man had many times and measures 
of affliction, being heir to the promise that " all 
who would live godly in Christ Jesus shall suffer 
tribulation." Upon the death of Judge Puleston 



REV. PHILIP HENRY. 103 

and his lady, the rest of the family, not realizing 
the value of a godly minister, and " loving this 
present world," withheld his annuity and ejected 
him from his office without alleging any fault, ex- 
cept his not reading or using the Book of Common 
Prayer. A servant of Mr. Puleston gave public 
notice to the church that he was to be dismissed, 
and the same day he preached his farewell dis- 
course from Philippians i. 27. " Only let your con- 
versation be as it becometh the gospel of Christ." 
Soon after he retired to his wife's paternal estate 
in Broad Oak, and though he ceased to preach to 
this people he continued to love and pray for them, 
still feeling as if a kind of relation subsisted be- 
tween them. 

On St. Bartholomew's day, 1662, he with a great 
number of zealous, faithful ministers, was silenced 
for not acceding to the act of uniformity. This was 
his greatest affliction, to be debarred from his work, 
which he considered as his honor and delight. In 
the midst of his days and usefulness, in his glory and 
prime, he was cast aside as a " despised broken ves- 
sel in which there was no pleasure." The next 
year he was imprisoned upon a false accusation of 
plotting against government ; but nothing being 
proved he was released, and returned to his house 
with thanksgivings to God, and a fervent prayer that 
he would forgive his enemies. He was a second 
time imprisoned, for meeting with a few friends to 
pray and seek the mercy of God, at the time the 
plague raged with great fury at London. 

The Five Mile Act then commenced, by which 
every non-conformist minister was sentenced to six 
months' imprisonment, if they approached within 



104 BIOGRAPHY OF PIOUS PERSONS. 

five miles of any town or corporation where they had 
formerly preached. Broad Oak was but four reput- 
ed miles from Worthenburg, so he was compelled 
to part from his beloved family, and afterwards re- 
moved them also for a time, till the fury of the per- 
secution turned away. In many other afflictions 
and losses he participated with his injured brethren, 
who were cut off from all means of support, and 
" had no certain abiding place," while their suffer- 
ings were the subjects of merriment in the luxurious 
and abandoned court of the Second Charles. Yet 
he sustained his troubles with the temper of a Chris- 
tian, sorrowing most of all that he could not be 
about his master's business. In his private capacity 
he exerted himself to do good, in charity and hospi- 
tality he was exemplary, and if he was not permitted 
to preach, none could hinder his " prayers to the 
God of his life." 

But to recount his particular sufferings in the 
cause of the gospel, would exceed my prescribed 
limits ; they were rendered remarkable by the resig- 
nation and deep feeling with which he sustained 
them, his prayers for his enemies, and his affection 
for the government which persecuted him and his 
brethren. But after the accession of James, a 
shadow of liberty was held out to the dissenters : 
they beheld it, and rejoiced with trembling. They 
were at first permitted to preach in their own houses, 
and soon after, Mr. Henry, at the earnest request 
of the people of Broad Oak, prepared one of his 
own buildings for a ehurch, and ofHciated there as 
minister until the time of his death. 

As if regret at the loss of so much time, or a 
presentiment of approaching death, stimulated liis 



REV. rUILIP UENRT. 106 

exertions, ho was observed to disregard himself and 
his own eeuse, and to give his time and strength to 
the work of the gospel. In the stated duties of the 
Sabbath, lectures on week days, catechising, visit- 
ing the sick, preaching in neighboring places, he 
was active as in the days of youth and strength. 
The national fasts, which were frequently appointed, 
he observed with great solemnity, and from nine in 
the morning till four in the afternoon never left the 
pulpit, but spent the whole time in its various exer- 
cises ; and it was noticed by his hearers that he 
grew more lively and engaged towards the close of 
the day, as if the spirit received greater supplies of 
strength, when his frame was weary and exhausted. 
All these laborious performances, in which he con- 
tinued nine years, till his death, were without the 
least profit or compensation, for he sought no per- 
ishable riches, and was willing to spend and be 
spent for Christ. At his own expense he distributed 
the word of Ufe, and without doubt has now obtained 
a durable reward. 

About the year 1687, in the course of a few 
months he performed the ceremony of marriage for 
all his children, much to his satisfaction and com- 
fort He preached a wedding sermon for each, 
and when the last of them left his house, writes thus 
in his diary. " We have sent hor away, not as 
Laban said he would have sent his daughters away, 
with mirth, and with songs, with tabret, and with 
harp, but with prayers, and tears, and sincere good 
wishes. And now we are alone as at the licginning ; 
f»od enable us to finish well : the Lord be belter 
unto us than many children." 

His letters to them now breathed the aflection of 
9 



106 BIOGRAPHY OF PIOUS PERSONS. 

a parent, and the spirit of a counsellor, and some of 
them preserved in an account of his life, shew that 
while his chief desire was to have them approved of 
God, he participated in all their joys, and in all their 
afflictions was afflicted. They were ever on his 
heart in his prayers and intercessions ; in his family 
devotions he offered " offerings and petitions accor- 
ding to the number and situation of them all," and 
would sometimes say, " Can the children of so 
many prayers be abandoned ?" Their remarkable 
unity and love gave him great satisfaction, and when 
he perceived that their transplantation into separate 
families, had rather increased and confirmed it, he 
gave fervent thanks to the God of all consolation, 
and in his last will and testament inserted this peti- 
tion : " That the Lord would build them up in holi- 
ness, and continue them still in brotherly love, as a 
bundle of arrows that cannot be broken." 

His house was scarcely emptied of his own chil- 
dren, when it was filled with those of his friends, 
who were desirous that their families should enjoy 
the benefit of his example and prayers. Many who 
had completed their university education came to 
pass some time under his care previous to their 
entrance upon the ministry. To such he would 
say, with his usual humility, "you come to me as 
JVaaman did to Elisha, expecting that I should do 
this and that great thing for you, when alas ! I can 
only say as he did. Go ivmh in Jordan, Go sliidij the 
Scriptures." 

His constitution was naturally delicate, yet by 
strict temperance, and regularity in diet and exer- 
cise he retained health and strength for incredible 
exertion. He was about the middle stature, and his 



REV. PHILIP HENRY. 107 

countenance expressed a gravity and sweetness 
almost angelic ; yet when his parishioners earnest- 
ly desired to have his portrait taken that they might 
look upon it when he was no more, he would an- 
swer affectionately " not so : the best picture of a 
minister is in the heart's of his people." lie 
had always accustomed himself to the medita- 
tion of death, that its actual appearance might not 
overwhelm him with terror. No presage no warn- 
ing, announced its approach : on the morning of 
his departure, he arose in vigorous health, and be- 
gan his. family service. In his exposition he was 
animated and copious, but in his prayer not so 
much so as usual, for while in this duty, he was 
taken with a sudden weakness, and received the 
sentence of death in himself " Ilappy is that ser- 
vant, whom his Lord when he cometh shall find 
so doing." 

Immediately afler prayer he retired to his 
chamber, without mentioning his illness, and was 
found in great extremity of pain, which no remedy 
could relieve. His son was sent for, and at his 
entrance he said, " O Son, you are welcome to 
a dying father ; I am now ready to be offered up, 
and the time of my departure is at hand." To his 
neighbors he said, " make sure work for your souls, 
get an interest in Christ while you are in health, for 
if I had that to do now, what would become of me ? 
but I bless God I am satisfied." The agonies of 
death increased upon him, but he continued in 
prayer, committing his soul to God. At ten at 
night his pulse and his sight failed. This he no- 
ticed, took an affectionate leave of his son, and con- 
port, giving her " a thousand thanks for her care 



108 BIOGRAPHY OF PIOUS PERSONS. 

and tenderness," left a blessing for his children 
and their little ones, called anew upon God his Sal- 
vation, and quietly resigned his soul unto him at one 
o'clock on the morning of June 24th, in the 65th 
year of his age. He died after an illness of 1 6 
hours, and his last words upon earth were — " O 
death, where is thy sting 1" It pleased God that this 
servant, so eminent for prayer, should obtain his re- 
peated request " never to outlive his usefulness ;" 
it pleased him also that in the act of prayer he 
should pass from this mutable state, to an haven of 
everlasting rest. 



REV. MATTHEW HENRY. 



Matthew Henrv, the son of Philip Henry, 
was born at Broad Oak, October. 28, 
1662. 1662. In his infancy and childhood, he 
was pecuHarly subject to the evils of a 
delicate constitution ; but these neither hindered his 
capacity, or inclination for learning. At three years 
of age, he was able to read properly, and with some 
observation of what he read ; and it is remarked 
by a companion of his younger days, that he very 
early put away childish things. His temper was 
gtMille and submissive, and however astonishing it 
may appear at the present day, it is confirmed by 
unquestionable authority, that no angry or unkind 
word ever passed between his sisters and himself, 
the whole time of their continuance in their lather's 
house. He was observed to be fond of preaching, 
and so much aflected by it as to retire to his cham- 
ber to weep and pray, and scarcely to be prevailed 
upon to come down and dine on the liOrd's day, 
lest ho should lose the forcible impression. 

In his tenth year he was supposed to be the 
subject of genuine conversion, and ever after con- 
sidered himself as dedicated to God. Papers of 
considerable length are preserved, written in his 
thirteenth year, entitled " Spiritual and Temporal 
Mercies and Ueliverances," in which with an im- 
9* 



110 BIOGRAPHY OF PIOUS PERSONS. 

derstanding far beyond his years, he notices several 
interpositions of Providence, in behjJf of his family 
and himself, and particularly gives thanks " for good 
instructions, for good parents, for the means of 
grace, for prayer, for succor and help under temp- 
tation, for brokenness of heart, for an enlightening." 

In 16S0, he went to London to complete his edu- 
cation, and was there noticed for proficiency in 
study, cheerfulness and frankness of disposition, 
and a talent at introducing religious subjects in 
common discourse. During his absence, he sel- 
dom failed to write twice a week to his father, 
making him the confidant of his temporal and spirit- 
ual concerns, and his letters to him and other friends 
breathe that spirit of piety, which had effectually 
preserved him from the temptations and vanities of 
youth. The silence and hardships imposed upon 
dissenting ministers, prevented many from educat- 
ing their sons to that profession, and by the advice 
of influential friends, he was sent with several com- 
panions to prosecute the study of law. He was 
noticed as one likely to be eminent in that profes- 
sion, as he possessed a quick apprehension, cor- 
rect judgment, retentive memory, and remarka- 
ble fluency of expression. 

But his desire was to the work of the ministry, 
notwithstanding the darkness of the times, for he 
" esteemed the reproach of Christ greater riches than 
the treasures of Egypt." He promoted social 
prayer and religious conference among the young 
practitioners, frequently expounded the Scripture to 
them, and at his departure bade them farewell in an 
affectionate discourse from 2d Thess. — " By the 
coming of our Lord Jesus Christ, and our gathering 



REV. MATTHEW HENRY. Ill 

together to him." Liberty, or occasional liberty of 
preaching, began to be allowed to dissenters, and he 
immediately commenced preaching as a candidate 
for the ministry. Success attended his first attempts, 
and a remarkable conversion was wrought by a 
sermon of his, from this text, " With God is terrible 
majesty." On the ninth of May, 1687, he was 
ordained, and soon after complied with the earnest 
solicitations of the people of Chester to come and 
settle among them. In a short time he was married 
to Miss Catharine Hardware, a person every way 
accomplished . for an agreeable and suitable com- 
panion. But the happiness of this union was of 
short duration. 

In httle more than a year after their marriage, 
God was pleased to take her from the world, and 
from tliis liis servant to separate the " desire of his 
eyes with a stroke." A contemporary of Mr. Henry, 
mentions how much he was ^fleeted by the solem- 
nities of the ensuing Sabbath. The pious and aged 
Mr. Philip Henry came to comfort his son on this 
mournful occasion, and preached from the pathetic 
request of Job, " Show me wherefore thou con- 
tendest with me." At the conclusion of the service, 
the bereaved man came forward to present in baptism 
his only child, an infant just introduced into a world 
of tears. He uttered again a confession of his faith, 
renewed his covenant, and the tears of the audience 
were muigled with his, when he gave tlie motherless 
child to the baptismal font, and added, " altliough 
my house be not now so with God, yet he hatli 
made with me an everlasting covenant, ordered in 
all things and sure, and this is all my salvation and 
all my desire, although he make me not to grow ; 



112 BIOGHAPIiy OF PIOUS PERSONS. 

yet according to the tenor of this covenant offer I 
up this my child unto the great God, a plant out of a 
dry ground, desiring that it may be im{>lanted into 
Christ." 

In his ministerial labors, stated and occasional, 
he was an example of diligence and activity. Be- 
side his preaching upon the Sabbath, lecture days, 
and fast days, which were frequent, he catechised 
and explained the catechism on Saturdays, at- 
tended two conferences in the week, one for 
young persons where religious questions were pro- 
posed and decided, and another for conversation 
upon experimental piety. He preached to the ma- 
lefactors in the castle of Chester, for the space of 
twenty years, with some appearance of success, and 
his sermons were so much esteemed in other places, 
and his help so often requested, that scarce a week 
elapsed in which he did not preach several times, 
in the neighboring towns, sometimes at the distance 
of thirty miles. In his preaching at Chester he 
began and completed a regular body of divinity, 
interrupting it only by occasional sermons adapted 
to the peculiar circumstances of his flock, or vary- 
ing state of public affairs. He expounded to them 
th^ whole of the Bible in course, more than once, 
so that the people of Chester were observed lo excel 
in the knowledge and understanding of the Scrip- 
tures. In visiting the sick he was uncommonly 
attentive, sometimes devoting a part of every day 
to the duty, and visiting live or six in a dav, while 
his diary records the variations of their si< kness, 
and situation of their minds. 

But in no part of his office did he excel more than 
in prayer. " In this," says a pious writer, who had 
often listened to him, " he had a wonderful faculty ot 



Rev. Matthew henry. 113 

engajOfinf; attention and raising the affections, and 
though copious was never tedious." His people, 
who placed unbounded confidence in him, would 
frequently solicit his advice for the direction of any 
consequential affair, and though his judgment and 
knowledge of human nature were unquestionable, he 
hesitated to give his advice unless it was sanctified 
by prayer. Thus when the people of his charge 
were under ap{)rehension of danger, about to take a 
journey, or to part w ith a child, their minister was 
found with them, to assist, or to counsel, and to 
recommend their particular case to the notice and 
favor of a prayer-hearing God. This variety of 
employment was attended faithfully and discharged 
affectionately without interfering with family duties, 
or preventing those literary labors which were 
afterwards to instruct the world. He was enabled to 
accomplish so much, by the divine blessing upon his 
constant improvement of time, and daily prayers for 
divine assistance. He never presumed to attempt 
any thing without dedicating it to God by prayer, 
and his diary gratefully records many evident an- 
swers of |>etitions ; " even in the day when he cried 
he was answered, and strengthened with strength 
in his soul." 

Some time after the vacancy made in his family 
by the death of his wife, he was again married to 
Miss Mary Warburton, a woman of much piety, and 
who seemed to increase the measure of his earthly 
happiness. The loss of three children called him 
again to mourning and \vo, and in the midst of 
those sorrows of which his heart was tenderly sus- 
ceptible, the deep submission and faith of a Christian 
were seen to triumph. " AH is well that God doeth ; 



114 BIOGRAPHY OF PIOUS PERSONS. 

he performeth the thing that is appointed for me, to- 
make me meet for his glory." Five daughters and 
a son were continued to him, and in his method of 
education,, he followed the excellent example of his 
father, and had the pleasure of seeing his work 
prosper in his hands. 

Among his greatest afflictions was the death of his 
beloved father. In his diary, the faith.'ul witness 
between him and his soul, he poured forth his sorrows 
without restraint. " What is this that God hath 
done unto us 1 he calleth my sins to remembrance 
this day. Our morning worship was as the ark of 
weeping ; among the neighbors lamentation and 
mourning ; my dear mother cast down, but not in 
despair ; I myself, full of confusion, and as a man 
astonished." At considerable length he gives vent 
to the feelings of a wounded and a humbled soul, 
for his heart was ever keenly sensible to the claims 
of affection, gratitude and friendship. The next 
year he followed to the tomb his two youngest sisters, 
and two years after, two of his brothers-in-law. Ta 
extract his pathetic expressions of grief, his inter- 
cession that these sorrows might be subservient to 
his future joy, would exceed my prescribed limits, 
yet could I wish that every Christian might read and 
profit from the sufferings of one deeply afflicted, 
yet " strong in the faith, giving glory to God." 

By the death of his last brother-in-law, a large 
family of children were left orphans. Notwith- 
standing the great number of his burdens, he took 
npon him the care of their encumbered estate, 
received several of them into his house, and so 
educated and provided for them, that they knew not 
the want of father or mother^ and felt not the mise-. 



RKV. MATTHEW HENRY. 116 

ries of orphanage. Their estate improved by his 
economy, and their souls by his aflectionate instruc- 
tions, will doubtless like the alms and prayers of the 
centurion " come up for a memorial before God." 

For twenty-four years he had never been absent 
from Chester at their monthly Sacrament, and so 
attached was he to his flock, that repeated solicita- 
tions to become the pastor of three different church- 
es in London, were refused. But at length the 
earnest entreaties of the people of Hackney, who 
would accept no denial, and the opinion of the 
ministers he most valued, that it was his duty to 
accept of a sphere of more extensive usefulness 
led him to deliberate upon the measure. Solemn 
and earnest prayer recommended the event to God, 
and the reluctant consent of his people upon the 
ground of his greater usefulness seemed to remove 
the barrier to its accomplishment. Their parting 
was upon the Lord's day. May 11, 1612, and his 
farewell discourse from 1st Thess. iv. 17, 18. 
" We shall be forever with the Lord, wherefore 
comfort one another with these words." He writes 
in review — " a very sad day ; O that by the sadness 
of our countenances our hearts may be made better. 
I look back with sorrow ; I \ook forward with fear ; 
but unto thee, O Lord, do I look up," 

Upon his entrance to a larger field of service, it 
became evident that he was calculated for great 
exertions, and that such a burning and shining light 
ought not to have been confined to narrow limits. 
He now frequently preached four times on the sab- 
bath, and every day in the week, for several weeks 
successively, and sometimes thrice on the same day. 
He seemed to realize that the time of his departure 



116 BIOGRAPHY OF PIOUS PERSONS. 

was at hand, and his motion in duty and holiness 
was accelerated, as he approached the centre of his 
rest. The next year he went on a visit to his flock 
at Chester, having promised at his departure to 
spend some Sabbaths with them every year, and in 
his annual review of mercies, mentions gratefully, 
" the comforts of that journey, and happy state of 
his congregation." 

The ensuing year he again visited them, not know- 
ing that he came to deposit his bones among them. 
His last sermon to them was from Hebrews ; " Let 
us therefore fear, lest a promise being left us of 
entering into rest, any of you should seem to come 
short of it." On Monday he left them, in usual 
health, preached on the road, was taken ill at the 
house of a friend, and said, " you have been used to 
take notice of the sayings of dying men, and this is 
mine ; that a life spent in the service of God, and 
communion with him, is the most comfortable and 
pleasant life that any can live in this world." The 
next morning at five, June 22, 1714, his spirit 
quietly departed to Him who gave it. 

The number of his printed works is thirty-two, 
of which the largest are his Scripture Expositions in 
five folio volumes. Each of these was commenced, 
finished and sent into the world, with particular and 
earnest prayer that it might be the instrument of 
good, and by them, he, being dead, yet speaketh. 
The venerable author from whose works I have 
condensed this little accountof a most extraordinary 
man, says, " that the one half has not been told 
us, of his unwearied diligence and exemplary jticly." 



SUSANNA BICKS. 



This child, whose life and death might serve as a 
pattern for experienced Christians, was a native of 
Holland, and born at Ley den, January 
1650. 24th, 1650. Her parents gave her re- 
ligious instruction, as soon as she was 
capable of receiving it, and delighted to present her 
to the ministers of the place, that she might be 
taught and catechised by them. The divine bles- 
sing descended upon their efforts, and almost as 
soon as she could speak and act, she put away childish 
things. She was attentive to her studies, strictly 
dutiful to her parents, of a sweet and humble dispo- 
sition, fond of the institutions of religion, and con- 
scientious in secret prayer. Her amiable deport- 
ment was not only proposed as a pattern of imita- 
tion for other children, but even older persons found 
themselves both edified and reproved by her exem- 
plary life and conversation. 

In the summer of 1664, when the pestilence ra- 
ged terribly in Holland, this sweet child was smit- 
ten, and declined her little head, like some broken 
flower — drooping, yet beautiful. Bending beneath 
the anguish of that cruel disease she said with great 
feeling — " If thy laws were not my delight I should 
now perish in my afthction." Her father, coming 
10 



118 BIOCnAFHY OF PIOUS PERSONS. 

to encourage her, said, " Be of good comfort, my 
child ; God will be near thee and us, under this 
heavy trial — he will not forsake, though he chasten 
us." "jOur heavenly Father," she answered, " chas- 
tens us for our profit, that we may be partakers of 
his holiness ; and though for the present it is not joy- 
ous but grievous, it yieldeth afterwards the peacea- 
ble fruits of righteousness. The Lord is now chas- 
tening me upon this bed, but I hope he will so bless 
it that it may yield blessed fruit, according to his 
mercies which fail not." Then with her eyes lifted 
to heaven, she prayed, " Be merciful to me, O Fa- 
ther ; be merciful to me a sinner, according unta 
thy word." 

Looking again upon her sorrowful parents, she 
said — " Cast thy burden upon the Lord, and he 
shall sustain thee ; he will never suffer the right- 
eous to be moved." Therefore, my dear mother, 
cast all your care upon him, who will cause all things 
to go well that concern you." Her mother answer- 
ed, " O, my dear child, God by his grace has given 
me great comfort in thee, in thy religious temper, 
thy attention in reading the Scripture, prayer and pi- 
ous discourse, to the edification of us as well as 
thyself. The Lord hitnself, who gave thee to us, 
make up this loss, if it be his pleasure to take thee 
away." " Dear mother," said the pious child," though 
I must leave you, and you me, yet God will never 
leave either of us. It is said. Can a woman forget 
her child ? yea,, she may tbrget, yet will I not for- 
get thee : behold I have graven thee upon the palms 
of my hands. Oh, comfortable words, both for 
mother and children," 

Being fatigued with her exertions in speaking, she 



SUSANNA BICK8. 119 

sank into a slumber, and as she awoke inquired 
what day it was. On being told it was the Sabbath, 
she immediately asked her father if he had recom- 
mended her to the public prayers of the church. He 
assured her he had. " I have learned," said she, 
" that the effectual fervent prayer of the righteous 
availcth much." She had a high esteem for the 
faithftd ministers of Christ, and delighted in their 
conversation, but knowing the danger that such a 
visit would expose them to, she would not consent 
that they should come near her person, but cast her- 
self wholly on the Lord, and found great comfort in 
her uncommon knowledge of the Scriptures. 

Though so young, she was greatly concerned for 
the interests of religion, and the welfare of its min- 
isters. Her father, coming in to see her, one day, 
was much astonished to find her weeping violently, 
and inquiring what distressed her, was answered — 
" Have I not cause to weep, when I have just heard 
that our minister was taken sick to-day in his pulpit, 
and went home very ill ? Is not this a sad sign of 
God's displeasure to our country, when he smiteth 
such a faithful pastor ?' — Thus she who could en- 
dure the bitter pains of her own sickness without 
murmuring, mourned bitterly for the sorrow of the 
church of God. She entertained a low opinion of 
herself, and her own merits, and would often exclaim, 
*' The sacrifices of God are a contrite heart ; a 
broken, and a contrite spirit, O God, thou wilt not 
despise. I desire that brokenness of heart which is 
built upon and flows from faith, and that faith which 
is built upon Christ, who is the only sacrifice for 
sin." 

Soon after, as she awoke from sleep, she said — 



120 BIOGRAPHY OF PIOUS PERSONS. 

" O dear father, and mother, how weak do I feel."* 
" My dear," said her father, "God in his tender mer- 
cy will strengthen your weakness." " Yes, Father," 
sjhe replied, " that is my confidence ; — for it is writ- 
ten, A bruised reed will he not break, and the smo- 
king flax he will not quench." She then discours- 
ed on the nature of faith, and requested to hear the 
11th of Hebrews, upon which she remarked — " O, 
what a steadfast faith w as that of Abraham, which 
made him willing to offer up his only son. Truly, 
faith is the substance of things hoped for ; the evi- 
dence of things not seen." 

Her parents, seeing her deportment, and hearing 
her wisdom and piety, so far above her years, burst 
into tears, and bemoaned their dying child, with all 
the tenderness of wounded affection. " O," said 
she, " why do you weep so over me, since if the 
Lord take me out of this miserable world, it shall be 
well with me through all eternity. You ought to be 
satisfied, seeing God is in heaven, and doeth what- 
soever he pleaseth ; and do you not pray every day 
that his will may be done on earth as it is in heaven ? 
Now, father, this is God's will, that I should lie up- 
on this bed, and be sick of this disease ; and shall 
Vfe not be content when our prayers are answered ? 
Is not extreme sorrow murmuring against God, 
without whose good pleasure nothing comes to pass ? 
Although I am struck with this sad disease, yet be- 
cause it is the will of God let that silence us ; and 
I will, as long as I live, pray that his will, and not 
mine, be done." 

Seeing them still much afflicted, she spoke of tlu: 
particular providence of God — " The hairs of oui 
head are all numbered : — fear not ; ve arc of more 



SUSANNA BICK8. 121 

value than many sparrows. Adversity and pros- 
perity are both good ; and though some things may 
seem evil in our eyes, the Lord turns them all to 
the good of those who are his." She then spoke of 
the plague which raged with such violence, as a 
judgment of God, and not as the infidels accounted 
it, the natural production of the elements. 

Awaking from slumber she exclaimed — " Oh 
this is the day for explaining the first question of 
the Catechism, and if we were there we should 
hear that whether in life or in death a believer is 
Christ's. Then be comforted ; for whether I live 
or die I shall be the Lord's ] Oh ! Why do you af- 
flict yourselves thus 1 But what shadl I say ? With 
weeping I came into this world, and with weeping I 
must go out again. But oh, my dear parents, bet- 
ter is the day of my death than the day of my birth." 
She then desired her father to pray with her, and to 
entreat that she might have a quiet and peaceable 
passage into another world. When he had conclu- 
ded, he asked if she would again see the physician. 
She answered " No — for I am beyond his help." — 
But, my child, replied he, we are to use the appoint- 
ed means, and leave the event to the Lord." "Yet," 
she said, " let me lean upon the heavenly physician : 
he is my helper. Does he not say — Come unto me, 
all ye that are weary and heavy laden, and I will 
give you rest ? and hath he not bid us call upon him 
in the day of trouble, and promised to deliver us that 
we may glorify him 1 Therefore, dear father, call 
upon him yet again for me." 

Her affection for the Holy Scriptures, and for her 
Catechism, was remarkable, and she frequently en- 
treated her father to go particularly to the ministers 
10* 



122 BIOGRAPHY OF PIOUS PERSONS. 

who had catechised and instructed her in religion, 
and thank them in the name of a dying child, and 
tell them how comforting their words were to her in 
the time of her distress. She requested also (hat 
her sincere thanks might be given to the instructors 
who had taught her to read and work ; for she 
thought she could not express gratitude enough to 
those who had shown her kindness and attention. 

When her father expressed the satisfaction he 
had taken in her progress in learning, particularly 
her diligence in reading the Scriptures, and writing, 
her constant obedience, and love to the ordinances 
of religion, she answered with great sweetness — 
" I desire to bless God for his kindness in granting 
me a godly education, and giving me the instruction 
of such parents and ministers, which I esteem a far 
better portion than 10,000 guilders, for thus I have 
learned to comfort myself out of the word of God ; 
and this comfort the world could never have afford- 
ed." " My child," said her afTcctionate father, " 1 
perceive you are very weak." " It is true, sir," said 
she, " that I feel my weakness increasing, and that 
I see your affliction increasing also, is a part of my 
affliction. But be content, I pray you, it is the 
Lord that doeth it ; and let us both say with David 
— ' Let us fall into his hand ; for his mercies are 
^•cat.' " 

■She frequently charged her parents, not to grieve 
forlier after her death, and recommended to them 
the example of David, who while his child was 
sick fasted and wept, but after its death, raised him- 
self from the earth, and received refreshment, say- 
ing — " he is now dead. Can I bring him back 
again ? — I shall go to him but he shall not return to 



SUSANNA BICKS. 123 

me." So ought you to say after my deulh. Our 
child is well ; — for we know it shall be well with 
them that trust in the Lord. My dear mother, who 
hath done so much for me, you must promise mo 
one thinn; before 1 die, — and that is not to sorrow 
too much for mc ; 1 speak this to you particularly, 
because I am afraid of your great affliction. Con- 
sider other losses ; remember those of Job. For- 
get not what Christ foretold : in the world ye shall 
have tribulation ; but be of good cheer, in me yo 
shall have peace. Must the apostles suffer so great 
tribulation, and we suller none? Did not Jesus 
(.'hrist, my only life and Saviour, sweat great drops 
of blood, endure mockings and agony, be nailed (o 
a cross, and have liis blessed side pierced with a 
spear ? Did he not cry out. My God, My God, why 
hast thou forsaken me ? Did he not purchase for 
mc the garments of righteousness ? — There is sal- 
vation in no other name. O that I might slec|) 
ijuietly on his bosom, and that till then he would 
strengthen me. Oh ! that he would receive me as 
those little ones, whom he took into his arms, and 
said — Of such is the kingdom of heaven. I lie 
here as a child. O Lord, 1 am thy child, receive 
me into thine arms, O Lord ! grace and not jus- 
tice ; for if thou shouldst enter into judgment with 
me, I cannot stand ; and none living would be just 
in thy sight." While she was thus comforting her 
friends out of the Scriptures, she seemed to attain 
a strong conlidence in God. " Who shall separate 
me from the love of Christ? 1 am persuaded nei- 
ther life nor death, angels, princi|)a1ities or powers, 
things present, or things to come, height, depth, 
or any other creature. Christ saith. My sheep hear 



124 BIOGRAPHY OF PIOUS PERSONS. 

my voice, I know them and they follow me, and no 
man shall pluck them out of my hands." 

In a triumph of faith, she exclaimed — " Death is 
swallowed up in victory : O death, where is thy 
sting ? — O grave, where is thy victory ? The sting 
of death is sin, and the strength of sin is the law : 
thanks be to God who giveth us the victory, through 
our Lord Jesus Christ." That she might better 
satisfy the minds of her mourning friends, she dis- 
coursed of the shortness of life, and the necessary 
law of nature appointing all men once to die. " O 
what is the life of man ; he is like the grass upon 
the earth, — hke the flower of the field, which the 
wind passes over, and it is gone, and its place shall 
know it no more. We are all from the earth, and 
to the earth we must return : the dust shall turn to 
dust, whence it first was, and the spirit to God who 
gave it." She urged also the sin and sorrow attend- 
ant upon the present life, as an argument to be ready 
to resign it. — " The longer we live, the more we 
sin : but now the Lord will free me from that sin 
and sorrow. What shall I say ? My life shall not 
continue long, for I feel much weakness. O Lord, 
look upon me graciously ; have pity upon me. I 
am oppressed : — undertake for me that I may stand 
fast and overcome." 

She was frequent in prayer, and in spiritual 
ejaculations, and it gave her great comfort to re- 
member that Christ interceded for her. " Oh ! 
without Christ I can do nothing. He is the true 
vine. Let me be a branch in that vine. What 
poor worms are we ; and how lame and halting do 
we go on in the ways of salvation. We know now 
but in part ; but when that which is perfect shall 



SUSANNA B1CK8. 126 

come, imperfection shall he done away. But what 
are we ourselves? Not only weakness but wick- 
edness : for we are by nature children of wrath. 
But oh ! thanks be to God, who has redeemed us 
from sin." 

She comforted her parents with the strong assur- 
ance she had of everlasting happiness. " Christ 
hath said, in my father's house are many mansions ; 
I go to prepare a place for you, that where I am 
ye may be also. My dear mother, he hath prepared 
a dwelling for me ; — O Lord, come, and take me to 
thyself." — " My child," said her mother, " he will 
strengthen you by his Holy Spirit, until he hath fully 
prepared you for your appointed place." " Yes, 
dear mother I am more and more spent, and draw 
near my last hour." She then desired to be prayed 
with, that she might have an easy passage. 

She was much concerned for the souls of her re- 
lations, and particularly enjoined upon her father, 
that he should bring up her sister as she had been, 
and instruct her in her catechism and in the things 
of God. " I formerly wept for my sister," said she, 
" thinking she would die before me ; and now she 
weeps for me." She then kissed her weeping sis- 
ter ; and taking her little sister, an infant of six 
months old into her arms, she kissed it with much 
affection, and spoke to parents and children with 
such tender solicitude as greatly affected all who 
were present. Her father told one of the atten- 
dants to take the infant from her, as he feared the 
hazard of that licry distemper, and had alnsady too 
much to bear. " Father," answere<l tlie sufFcrer, 
" »lid not God preserve the three children in tht! tiery 
furnace ?— and did you not teach me that Scripture, 



126 BIOGRAPHY OF PIOUS PERSONS. 

When thou passest through the fire thou shall not 
be burnt, neither shall the flame kindle upon thee?" 
The doctrine of the resurrection gave her spirit 
much comfort, and far beyond her age she would 
repeat and apply those Scriptures, which speak of 
the future glory of this decaying and mouldering 
body. " It is sown in corruption, it is raised in- 
corruptible ; it is sown in dishonor, it shall be raised 
in glory ; it is sown in weakness, it shall be raised 
in power. Behold ! thus it shall be with my mor- 
tal flesh. Blessed are the dead, who die in the 
Lord, because they rest from their labors. They 
shall enter into peace, they shall rest in their beds : 
every one who walketh in uprightness. Behold, 
now, father I shall rest and sleep in that bed-cham- 
ber. I know that my Redeemer liveth ; and shall 
stand in the latter day upon the earth ; and though 
after my skin worms destroy this body, yet in my 
flesh shall I see God. Dear Father, this skin, and 
perishing flesh which you see, shall be raised up 
again ; and these eyes which are now so dim shall 
on that day behold my dear Redeemer ; and though 
the worms devour my flesh, yet with these eyes shall 
I behold God for myself. Marvel not at this ; for 
the hour is coming, in which all that are in their 
graves shall hear his voice, and come forth : and I 
shall rise in that day, and behold my Redeemer. 
Then shall he say unto me, Come, blessed of my 
father, inherit what was prepared for you from the 
foundation of the world. Behold, now I live : yet 
not I but Christ Uveth in me ; and the life I now 
live in the flesh, is by the faith of the son Son of 
God, who loved me, and gave himself for me. I 
am saved : — yet nOt of myself : — not of works, lest 



SUSANNA BICKS. 127 

any man should boast My dear parents, we must 
now shortly part : — my speech faileth me : — pray to 
the Lord for a quiet close to my combat." 

The afflicted parents both exclaimed, " Ah ! 
our dear child, how sad is it that we must part." — 
" I go," said the dying one, " to heaven, where wo 
shall find each other again. I go to Jesus Christ. 
I go to my dear brother, who did so much cry and 
call upon God to the last moment of his breath. I 
go to my little sister who was but three years old, 
when she died, who when we asked her if she 
should die, answered, yes, if it be the Lord's will : — 
or I will stay with my mother, if it be the Lord's 
will : — but yet, I know that I shall die, and go to 
heaven, and to God. O see how so small a babe 
could behave itself so submissively to the will of 
God, as if it had no will of its own. Therefore, 
dear father and mother, give the Lord thanks for 
this his free and rich grace, an(> then I shall the 
more gladly be gone. Be gracious, then, O Lord, 
unto me also : be gracious unto me, wash me thor- 
oughly from mine unrighteousness and cleanse me 
from my sin." 

After this prayer her spirit was refreshed with a 
sense of tlie pardon of her sin, so that she cried out 
with fervency, — :" Behold, God hath washed away 
my sins, and oh ! how I long to die. The apostle 
said, In this body we earnestly sigh and groan, long- 
ing for our house which is in heaven, that we may 
be clothed therewith. Now I also lie here sighing 
and longing for that dwelling which is above. In 
the last sermon which I shall ever hear, I heard this, 
which is a source of great comfort to me." She 
then repeated several Scriptures which were quoted 



128 BIOGRAPHY OF PIOUS PERSONS. 

in that sermon, proving with what attention she 
had listened, and how perfect her powers of recol- 
lection were to the last. She then desired that 
prayers might be offered, that her sins might be for- 
given, that she might have the assurance of faith, 
and continuation of divine strength and comfort as 
her necessities might require. 

After being for some time absorbed in mental de- 
votion, she entreated her parents to forgive the er- 
rors of her childhood, and to forget the occasions 
wherein she had grieved, and given them trouble. 
She thendistributed her books, particularly request- 
ing her brother never to part with the " Lectures 
on the Catechism," but to study them in remem- 
brance of her. Feeling a severe pain in her breast, 
she said she was assured that her last hour drew 
nigh ; and her parents suppressed their grief to tell 
her that God would undoubtedly strengthen her in 
the hour of her extremity. 

" He is my Shepherd, she replied. Though I 
walk through the dark valley of the shadow of death, 
shall I fear, when he comforteth me ? The suffer- 
ings of this present life, arc not worthy to be com- 
pared to the glory that shall be revealed. Ye are 
bought with a price : ye are washed, ye are sancti- 
fied, in the name of our Lord Jesus, and by the 
spirit of our God. My end approacheth. Now 
shall I put on white raiment, and be clothed before 
the Lamb with his spotless righteousness. Angels 
are ready to carry me before the throne of God." 

This she spoke with a dying voice, but full of 
the animation of hope and faith. After a j)ause, 
she once more addressed her weeping parents. 
" Wc know, that if this eartlily house, this tabcrna- 



SUSANNA BICKS. 129 

cle, be dissolved, we have one built of God, eternal 
in the heavens. For this, we sigh earnestly. Fa- 
ther, this tabernacle of my body is broken down ; 
but the soul which partcth from it, shall be taken 
to the heavenly paradise, the New Jerusalem. 
There shall I dwell, and go no more out, but sing 
Holy, holy, holy is the Lord of Hosts, the God of 
Sabaoth." Her last words were, " Lord God, 
into thy hands I commend my spirit. O Lord, be 
gracious, be merciful to me, a poor sinner." 

Having uttered these words, she fell asleep, on 
September 1st, 1664, between seven and eight in 
in the evening, in the fourteenth year of her age. 
The account of this extraordinary child was first 
printed in Holland, and afterwards translated from 
the original Dutch, by a pious man, who was desi- 
rous that the benefit of such an example might be 
more widely extended. Let it animate parents to 
|)ersevere in the duties of religious instruction, and 
children to be more fervent in prayer that they may 
be enabled to live the life, and die the death of the 
righteous. 



11 



FJENEIiON, ARCHBISHOP OF 
CAMBRAY. 



Francis de Salignac, de la Motte Fenelon^ 
was born in the castle of Fenelon, in the department 

of Dordogne, in France. At the age 
1651. of twelve years he left the instructions ©r 

his father for the university of Cahors, and 
afterwards went to complete his studies at Paris,, 
under the care of his uncle, the Marquis of Fenelon.- 
He soon began to be known and celebrated at 
Paris, and at the early age of nineteen, preached 
there with the most unbounded applause. But the 
Marquis, who was possessed at once of piety, and a. 
knowledge of the human mind, fearing that the com- 
mendations of the world might inflate his young 
heart with vanity, or seduce it from the simplicity of 
the gospel, persuaded him to imitate for several 
years the silence of Jesus Christ, 

But his virtues and talents could not be entirely 
hidden, and his fame began to be sounded at court, 
so that king Louis XIV. appointed him to conduct 
a mission for the conversion of the Protestants, on 
the coast of Saintonge. He appointed a strong 
military force to assist his exertions, but the young 
Abb^ Fenelon, abhorring the sanguinary measures 
often resorted to by their church, refused to be con- 



ARCHBISHOP FENBLON. 131 

cemed in the mission, if the troops were ordered to 
accompany him. His Hrmness defeated the ill- 
appointed design, and while the objects of his mis- 
sion received that mild and gentle treatment which 
coincides with the spirit of the gospel, the unfortunate 
Protestants in the other parts of France, were given 
lip to the dreadful effects of the most inhuman per- 
secution. At his return from his mission he ab- 
sented himself for two years from the splendor of a 
dissipated court ; preferring to cultivate in retire- 
ment the powers of his mind, and the principles of 
piety. 

At the age of twenty-seven, he was appointed Su- 
perior to the new female converts in Paris. A few 
years after, he published an excellent treatise on fe- 
male education, which was so highly esteemed, that 
the king appointed him preceptor to his grandchil- 
dren, the young Dukes of Burgundy and Anjou. 
In 1695, his merits were rewarded with the Abbey 
of St. Valery, and shortly after with the Archbish- 
opric of Cambray. He then relinquished of his 
own accord the Abbey of St. Valery, thinking it 
wrong to hold a plurality of benefices. Though 
blameless in his life and conversation, he was not 
exempt from the machinations of enmity and re- 
venge, and was forced by them to leave the court 
forever. It was supposed that his firmness in per- 
suading the king not to proclaim Madame de Main- 
tenon, Queen of France, was the real cause of his 
banishment ; though the ostensible reason was his 
pubUcation of a book, entitled " An Explication 
of the maxims of the Saints," which the Pope con- 
demned as heretical. 

Retiring from the storms of public life, to the 



132 BIOGRAPHY OF PIOUS PERSONS. 

tranquil shades of his own diocese, he discharged 
punctually all the holy duties of his ofiico, and led 
a pious and exemplary life. Some of the fruits of 
his leisure, were the volume entitled " Adventures 
of Telemachus," written in a fine style, containing 
maxims which advance the happiness of mankind, 
and a most sublime moral. His enemies in the 
court of Louis, prevailed upon that monarch to 
stop the printing of it at Paris, but its mtrinsic merit 
established its fame throughout Europe. His rest- 
less foes endeavored with unceasing mahce to 
deprive him of the Archbishopric of Cambray, 
but he still retained that office, and continued to 
delight all who were within the sphere of his influ- 
ence, by gentle piety, and ineffable sweetness of 
manners. 

His enemies, defeated in this attempt, placed in 
his neighborhood an ecclesiastic of high birth, with 
the title of his Grand Vicar, to be a spy upon all 
his actions. But having long observed the pure 
and spotless heart which he had been employed to 
calumniate, struck with remorse, he came and 
threw himself at the feet of Fcnclon, confessed the 
unworthy part which he had been engaged to per- 
form, implored his forgiveness, and sought to cover 
his shame in retirement. Meekly sustained was 
this sweet triumph of rectitude of heart, and sin- 
cere piety. So universal was the fame of his good- 
ness and virtue, that in the last year of the war with 
Louis XIV., the Duke of Marlborough gave orders 
to his troops " not to plunder the estate of the ami- 
able Fenelon." Thus peculiarly favored, he direct- 
ed his benevolent attentions to those who suflered. 
He iBSsemblcd m lus palace the unfortunate people, 



ARCHBISHOP FENELON. 133 

whom the horrors of war had driven from their 
dwellings, fed them at his own table, and a.^'Sisted 
them by many acts of kindness. 

One day as he was waiting upon a'numerons com- 
pany, he observed one of the peasants did not eat, 
and tenderly inquired the reason. " Alas ! my lord," 
said the poor man, " when I fled from my cottage, 
I had not time to bring away a cow that nourished my 
family ; the enemy will carry her off", and I shall never 
be able to find so good a one." Rising from his table, 
the benevolent Archbishop took one of his domes- 
tics, left the city immediately, found the animal, and 
brought her himself to the peasant. In no moment 
of honor, applause, or acquisition of fortune, did he 
realize such simple and real delight, as when, driving 
before him the cow of the poor peasant, he thought 
of the hearts that this humble and fearless act had 
made glad. He would often walk to the cottages 
of the poor in the environs of Cambray, seat himself 
among them, and listen to their tales of sorrow, that 
he might better know how to sooth, comfort and 
reUevc them. " There," they would say, after his 
death, " There is the wooden chair, in which our 
good Archbishop used to sit among us. Ah ! we 
shall never see him more." — They spoke his name 
with the deepest reverence and aflection, and thought 
of him, as if he had been an angel. 

In the beginning of the 17th century, the young 
prince spent some time with him at his palace in 
Cambray. In the course of his instructions he 
earnestly dissuaded him from using the arm of force 
and persecution, in matters of religion, as was the 
too prevalent custom of those bigoted ages. — " No 
human power," said he, " can have any authority 
11* 



134 BIOGRAPHY OF PIOUS PERSONS. 

over the freedom of the mind. Violence may m<ikc 
hypocrites, but it can never persuade the heart ; 
and to bring such proselytes to religion is not to 
protect, but debase it." — Thus lived the amiable 
Fenelon, in the practice of every virtue which true 
piety inculcates. His death was hastened by 
casualty. As he was taking the air in a retired 
part of his estate, the horses took a sudden fright, 
and the carriage was overturned. A contusion 
which he then received, occasioned an inflammation 
in the breast, which terminated his life, on the eighth 
of January, 1715, at the age of 64. 

He was a Christain who highly prized, and sta- 
tedly availed himself of the privilege of prayer. 
" Such is our dependance upon God," he writes, 
" that we are obliged to seek from him the very 
power of right action. This necessity of having 
recourse to him in all our wants, instead of being 
grievous should be our greatest consolation. What 
a happiness that we arc allowed to speak to him 
with confidence, to open our hearts and hold familiar 
conversation with him by prayer. lie himself in- 
vites us to it ; and we may judge how ready he is to 
give us those good things which he himself solicits 
us to ask of him. Let us pray then with faith, and 
not lose the fruit of our prayers, by a wavering 
uncertainty, which the apostle James testifies hin- 
ders their success. He advises us to pray when we 
are in trouble, because thereby we shall find conso- 
lation ; yet are we so wretched that this heavenly 
employment is often a burden more than a comfort 
to us. The lukewarmncss of our prayers is the 
source of all our other infidelities. Our Saviour 
said — ' usk, and ye shall iind ; — seek, and ye shall 



ARCHBISHOP FENELON. 135 

obtain; — knock, and it shall be opened to you.' 
It' riches were to be had for asking, with what ear- 
nestness, assiduity and perseverance, would men ask 
for them. If treasures were to be found with 
looking for them, what place, what corner would 
escape search? If by knocking they could gain 
admittance into the king's counsel, or the highest 
places of preferment, what a knocking should wo 
hear ] Divine grace . is the only true good, yet the 
only thing they neglect ; the only thing which they 
have not patience to wait for. The promises of 
Christ are infallibly certain, and it is our own fault if 
we do not find their blessed effect." 

To these sentiments of the admirable Fenelon, 
1 add a prayer of his, expressive of that profound 
humility which ever characterized his piety. — " O 
Lord ! I know not what I should ask of thee. 
Thou only knowest what I want : and thou lovest 
me better than I can love myself. O Lord, give to 
one who desires to be thy child, what .is proper, 
whatsoever it may be. I dare not ask either com- 
forts or crosses. I only present myself before thee : 
I open my heart unto thee. Behold those wants 
which I am ignorant of: but do thou behold and do 
according to thy mercy. Smite or heal : depress, 
or raise me up : — I adore all thy purposes without 
knowing them : I am silent : I offei- myself in. sacri- 
fice. I abandon myself to thee ; having no greater 
desire than to accomplish thy will. Teach me to 
pray. Pray thou thyself in me." — Thus humble, 
thus childlike was this eminent saint in the presence 
of his God ; — emptying himself of all that the 
world might call talents and goodness, and clothing 
his soul with the simplicity of Christ. 



136 BIOGRAPHY OP PIOUS PERSONS. 

Another prayer of his is inserted at the close of 
one of his works, entitled " A Demonstration of 
the Existence, Wisdom, and Omnipotence of God,'* 
drawn from a survey of nature, particularly of man. 
With the eye of a philosopher, and a Christian, he 
explores his subject, and clothes his remarks in the 
robe of unvarnished elegance, while the great works 
of the Deity elevated his soul to sublime adoration. 
To use the words of a fine writer — " this supplica- 
tion is the voice of an happy and untroubled spirit, 
or like the worship of an angel concerned for those 
who had fallen, though himself still in the state of 
glory and innocence." 

" Oh ! my God, if the greater part of mankind 
do not discover thee in that glorious show of nature 
which thou has placed before our eyes, it is not be- 
cause thou art far from any one of us. Thou art 
present to us more than any object that we touch 
with our hands ; but our senses, and the passions 
they produce in us, turn our attention from thee. 
Thy light shineth in the midst of darkness, but the 
darkness comprehendeth it not. Thou, O Lord, 
dost every way display thyself. Thou shinest in 
all thy works, but art not regarded by heedless, un- 
thinking man. The whole creation speaks loudly 
of thee, and echoes with the repetition of thine ho- 
ly name. But such is our insensibility, that we are 
deaf to the great and universal voice of nature. 
Thou art every where about us, and within us ; — 
but we wander from ourselves, become strangers to 
our own souls, and do not apprehend thy presence. 
O Thou, who art the eternal fotmtain of light and 
beauty, who art the ancient of days, without begin- 
ning and without end : — O Thou, who art the life 



ARCHBISHOP FENELON. 137 

of all that truly live, those can never fail to find 
thee who seek for thee within {hcmsclves. But 
alas ! — the very gifts which thou bestowest upon 
us, do so employ our thoughts, that thoy hiiulor us 
from perceiving the hand that conveys them to us. 
^Ve live by Thee, and yet live without thinking on 
thee : — yet, O Lord, what is life in the ignorance of 
thee ? A dead, inactive piece of matter, a flower 
that withers, a river that glides away, a palace that 
hastens to its ruin, a picture made up of fading 
colors, or a mass of shining ore, strike our imagina- 
tions, and make us sensible of their existence. We 
regard them as objects capable of giving us pleas- 
ure, not considering that thou conveyest through 
them all the pleasure which we imagine they give 
us. Such vain, empty objects that are only the 
shadows of being, are proportioned to our low and 
grovelling thoughts. That beauty which thou hast 
poured out on the creation, is as a veil which hides 
thee from our eyes. As thou art a being too pure 
and exalted to pass through our senses, thou art not 
regarded by men who have debased their nature, 
and made themselves like the beasts that perish. 
So infatuated are they, that notwithstanding they 
know what is wisdom and virtue, which have neither 
sound, nor color, nor smell, nor taste, nor figure, 
nor any other sensible quality, they can doubt of thy 
existence because thou art not apprehended by the 
grosser organs of sense. Wretches that we are ! 
we consider shadows as realities, and truth as a 
phantom. That which is nothing is all to us : — that 
which is all appears to us as nothing. What do wc 
see in all nature but thee, O my God ! Thou — and 
only thou, appearest in every thing. When I con- 



138 BIOGRAPHY OF PIOUS PERSONS. 

aider thee, O my God, I am swallowed up and lost 
in contemplation of thee. Every thing, besides 
thee, even my own existence, vanishes and disap- 
pears in the contemplation of thee. I am lost to 
myself, and fall into nothing when I think on thee. 
The man who does not see thee has beheld noth- 
ing : he who does not taste thee has a relish for 
nothing. His being is vain : his life but a dream. 
Set up thyself, O Lord : — set up thyself that we 
may behold thee. As wax consumes before the 
fire, and as the smoke is driven away, so let thine 
enemies vanish out of thy presence. How unhap- 
py is that soul, who without the sense of thee, has 
no God, no hope, no comfort to support him. But 
how happy the man that searches, sighs, and thirsts 
after thee. Yet he only is fully happy on whom 
thou liflest the light of thy countenance, whose tears 
thou hast wiped away, and who in thy loving kind- 
ness enjoys the completion of all his desires. How 
long, how long, O Lord, shall I wait for that day, 
when I shall possess in thy presence, fulness of joy 
and pleasures forevermore ? O my God, in this 
pleasing hope my soul rejoices and cries out, who is 
like unto thee ? My heart melts away, and my 
spirit faints within me, when I look up to thee who 
art the God of my life, and my portion to all eter- 
nity." 



RBV. CHRISTOPHER LOVE. 



Christopher Love was an eminently faithful 

minister of Laurence-jury, London. In the time 

of the usurper Cromwell, he was accused 

1651. of an attachment to monarchy, and un- 
der a false pretext of plotting against 
government, sentenced to the block. From his 
dying speech to the people, the following is selected. 

" Although there is but a little between me and 
death, yet this bears up my heart, — there is but 
little between me and- heaven. It comforted the 
martyr Taylor, when he was going to execution, 
that there were but two stiles between him and his 
father's house ; — there are but two steps between 
me and glory. It is but lying down upon that block, 
and I shall ascend a throne. I am this day sailing 
to the ocean of Eternity ; — through a rough pas- 
sage to an haven of rest ; — through a red sea to the 
promised land. As God said to Moses, ' Go up to 
Mount Nebo, and die there,' methinks I hear him 
say to me, — Go up to Tower-hill, and die there. 
Isaac said to himself, that he was old, and knew 
not the day of his death ; yet, I am young, and 
know the day of my death, the kind of my death, 
and the place of my death. 

" Like John the Baptist, and Paul the Apostle, I 
am to be beheaded. I read also in the Scriptures 
that " the saints were beheaded for the word of God, 
and for the testimony of Jesus. But herein is the 



140 BIOGRAPHY OF PIOUS PERSONS. 

disadvantage which I lie under, in the thoughts of 
many, who judge, that I suffer not for the word of 
God, or for conscience' sake, but for meddling with 
state matters, I briefly answer, that this is an old 
subterfuge of Satan, to impute the cause of the 
sufferings of God's people to machinations against 
the state, when in truth they are persecuted for 
their conscience and their religion. The rulers of 
Israel would have put Jeremiah to death on a civil 
account, though it was only the boldness of his 
prophecy, against which they were angiy. They 
pretended that he must die because he fell away to 
the Chaldeans, and would have brought in foreign 
forces to invade them. The same thing is laid to 
my charge, of which I am as innocent as Jeremiah 
was. So Paul, though he did but preach Jesus 
Christ, yet his enemies sought to put him to death 
as a mover of sedition. 

" Upon a civil account, it is pretended, my life is 
taken away ; but it is because I pursue my cove- 
nant, and will not prostitute my principles and con- 
science to the ambition and lust of men. I had 
rather die a covenant keeper, than live a covenant 
breaker. Beloved, I am this day making a double 
exchange ; I am changing a pulpit for a scaffold, 
and a scaffold for a throne. And I might add a 
third, — T am changing the presence of this great 
multitude on Tower Hill, for an innumerable com- 
pany of saints and martyrs on the holy hill of Zion : 
I am changing this guard of soldiers, for a guard of 
angels, who will receive and conduct me to Abra- 
ham's bosom. This scaffold is the best pulpit that 
1 ever preached in ; God, tlu-ough his grace, made 
me in my church pulpit an instrument to bring 



UEV. CHRISTOPHER LOVE. 141 

others to heaven ; but in this pulpit he will bring me 
to heaven. Though my blood be not that of no- 
bles, it is Christian blood — innocent blood. 

I magnify the riches of God's grace and mercy 
towards me, who, bom in Wales, an obscure coun- 
try, and of obscure parents, should thus be singled 
out for such honorable sufferings. For the first 
fourteen years of my life, I never heard a sermon ; 
yet in my fifteenth year it pleased God to convert 
me. Blessed be God, who not only made me a 
Christian, but also a minister, judging me faithful, 
and putting me into the ministry, which is my glory. 

I had rather be a preacher in a pulpit, than a 
prince upon a throne : I had rather be an instrument 
to bring souls to heaven, than that all nations should 
pay tribute to me. 

Formerly, I have been under a spirit of bondage, 
and sometimes have had more fear of the drawing 
of a tooth, than now of the cutting off my head. 
Fear was often upon me when death was not near ; 
now death is near me, and my fear hath vanished. 
In this I am comforted ; — though men kill me, they 
cannot damn me ; though they thrust me out of the 
world, they cannot shut me out of heaven. When 
I have shed my blood, I expect the full declaration 
of the remission of sins through the blood of Jesus 
Christ. I am going to my long home, and ye to 
your short homes ; but before ye reach yours, I 
sh.iU bo at mine." 

After this ho prayed earnestly, " that as he was 
called to the work he had never done, he might have 
(he strength that he never had," and then calrnly 
.suffered the stroke of the executioner, on the twenty- 
second of August, in the year 16.51. 
12 



JACOB BICKS. 



This interesting and religious child was the bro- 
ther of Susanna Bicks, a remarkable instance of 

e8U"ly piety, and born at Leyden, HoUemd, 
1657. in the year 1657. His parents were very 

strict and conscientious in his education, 
and God was pleased to sanctify their prayers and 
instructions to his thorough conversion. In the 
time of the fatal plague, he was seized with the in- 
fection four weeks before his sister, and it so affect- 
ed his head, that he was very drowsy and lethargic. 
In his waking intervals, he was almost constantly 
engaged in prayer, and though but a little child, found 
it a great comfort in his distress. Once after his pa- 
rents had been praying by him, they asked him if he 
would again see the physician. He answered, 
" No. I will have him no more. The Lord will 
help me, for I know he will take me to himself." 
" My dear child," said his father, " that grieves my 
heart." " Father," said the patient suft'erer, " let 
us pray ; and the Lord will be near for my helper." 
After prayer he exclaimed — " Come now, dear fa- 
ther and mother, and kiss me ; I know that I shall 
die. Farewell, my dear parents, — farewell dear 
sister, — farewell all. Now shall I go to heaven, 
and to God, and to Jesus Christ, and the holy an- 



JACOB BICKS. 143 

gels. Remember you not what is said by Jeremi- 
ah ? Blessed is he who trusteth in the Lord. Now 
I trust in him, and he will bless me. ' Little chil- 
dren, love not the world : for it passeth away.' 
Away then with all the pleasant things of the world ! 
away with my toys — away with my books ; — for in 
heaven I shall know sufficiently of the true wisdom 
without them." " God," said his father, " will be 
near thee, and uphold thee." " Yes, father," said 
the child, " it is written God resisteth the proud, but 
giveth grace unto the humble. I shall humble my- 
self under his mighty hand, and he will lift me up." 
" O my dear child," replied the afflicted father, 
" hast thou so strong a faith ?" " Yes," said the 
dying one, " God hath given me so strong a faith 
upon Jesus Christ, that Uie devil himself shall flee 
from me. He that believeth on the Son hath ever- 
lasting life, and shall overcome the wicked one. 
Now I believe in Jesus Christ my Redeemer, and 
he will never leave or forsake me, but will give unto 
me eternal life, and let me sing, Holy — holy — holy 
is the Lord of Sabaoth." 

Then praying earnestly — " Lord be merciful to 
me a poor sinner " — he quietly and sweetly breath- 
ed out his soul, when he was only seven years old, 
in the month of August, 1664. 



THE MARQ,UTS OF ARGYL.E. 



The celebrated Scotch Marquis of Argyle, to 
many popular accomplishments added a zealous 

piety ; and being a firm friend to the 
1661. Covenanted Reformation, was put to 

death for it, as a crime, in the spring of 
1661, in the second year of the reign of the Second 
Charles. When his sentence of death passed the 
parliament, he answered, " I had the honor to set 
the crown upon the King's head, and now he has- 
tens me to a better crown than his own." One day 
intervened between his sentence and execution, and 
as he entered the gloomy prison to which he was 
remanded, his excellent lady met him covered with 
tears, and embracing him, said, " The Lord will re- 
quite it." None in the room could refrain from 
weeping and lamentation, except the Marquis, who, 
perfectly composed, said " Forbear ; forbear ; tru- 
ly, I pity them, they know not what they are doing ; 
they may shut me in where they please, but they 
cannot shut out my God from me. For my part, I 
am as content to be here, as in the castle of Edin- 
burgh ; as content in the castle, as in the Tower 
of London, where I was first put ; and I hope to he 
as content upon the scaffold, as in any of them all." 
He mentioned that he had been endeavoring to 



THE MARQUIS OF AROYLE. 146 

imitate the conduct of David, who when Ziklag was 
taken and burnt, and his people spake of stoning 
him, encouraged himself in the Lord his God. His 
short respite from Saturday to Monday, was passed 
with the greatest serenity and cheerfulness, and in 
the proper exercises of a dying Christian. To some 
ministers who were allowed to attend him, he said, 
" Shortly you will envy me who have gone before ; 
for my skill fails, if you who are ministers will not 
either suffer much, or sin much ; for if you agree 
with these men in part only, you will suffer, and if 
you go not at all with them, you shall but suffer." In 
this he alluded to the growing trouble of the times, 
and to the religious persecutions opened against the 
faithful. 

The Marquis was naturally timorous, but he de- 
sired those about him to observe, how God had an- 
swered his prayers by removing all fear from him ; 
and it was not the work of his friends to reconcile 
him to his dissolution, so much as to restrain and 
qualify his desires after it. The morning of Mon- 
day, ihe day that he suffered, while thronged with 
papers relative to his estate, his mind was so fixed 
upon heavenly things, so supematurally supported 
and comforted, that he rapturously exclaimed, " I 
thought to have concealed the Lord's goodness, but 
it will not do ; I am now ordering my earthly affairs, 
and God is sealing my charter to a better inherit- 
ance, and was just now saying to me, " Son, be of 
good cheer ; thy sins are forgiven thee." 

Aflerwards he retired for a time by himself, for 
secret devotion, and as he returned, a friend said to 
him " What cheer, my Lord?" "Good cheer," he an- 
swered, " the Lord hath again confirmed, and said to 
12* 



146 BIOGRAPHY OF PIOUS PERSONS. 

me from heaven, Son, be of good cheer, thy sins are 
forgiven thee ;" and gushing out in tears of joy, he 
turned to the window, and wept there. Afterwards 
he said in a perfect rapture, " I think his kindness 
overcomes me ; but God is good to me, and im- 
parts not too much of it here, for he knows I could 
not bear it. Get my cloak, and let us go." Being 
told his hour was not yet come, he kneeled down 
and prayed with them all, like a saint — like a mar- 
tyr — like a seraph. As he passed on to death, he 
said, " I could now die like a Roman, but I choose 
rather to die like a Christian." 

Meeting a friend, Mr. James Guthrie, also sen- 
tenced to death, he embraced and bade him fare- 
well. " God is with you," said his friend, " hath 
been with you, and will continue to be with you ; 
and I, were I not now under sentence of death, 
could cheerfully die for your lordship." The Mar- 
quis addressed the people, at his place of execution, 
expressing his complacency in the cause for which 
he suffered, and then his blood flowed on the scaf- 
fold of Tower Hill, on Monday, May 27, 1661. 



REV. SAMUEL LAWRENCE. 



Samuel Lawrence, the only son of William 

Lawrence, a respectable man, and very eminent 

Christian, was bom at Wem, a small mar- 

1661. kettown in Shropshire, in the year 1661. 
When scarcely past the age of infancy, he 
was sent to school, that he might be out of the way 
of danger, but with no expectation of his learning 
any thing ; yet while they supposed him too young 
to understand, he made himself master of the al- 
phabet, and before the year had expired could read 
in the Bible with accuracy and propriety. While 
he was yet a child he entered upon the Latin lan- 
guage, and made such proficiency in that and his 
other studies, that as he passed from school to 
school his instnictors distinguished and applauded 
him. The time usually allotted to sport, he devot- 
ed to study, and when his parents, fearful that he 
might injure his health, allured him by pecuniary 
rewards to join in the pastimes of his companions, 
he would return with increased ardor and attach- 
ment to his books. 

At that early period his virtues and piety began 
to disclose themselves, he seemed estranged from 
the vanity and waywardness often observable at 
that season of life, and such a spirit of devotion 



148 BIOGRAPHY OF PIOUS PERSONS. 

characterised him that pious people were accustom- 
ed to distinguish him as one " sanctified from his 
birth." He was attached to the stated exercise of 
secret prayer, and would rise very early, that he 
might secure the hour most favorable to meditation, 
and send forth on the wings of the morning his soul 
to meet its Creator. Such a fair and auspicious 
dawn, seemed to be the prelude of an illustrious 
day. 

After finishing early his course of university stud- 
ies, he officiated first as assistant in an academy, 
and afterwards as domestic chaplain to the pious 
Lady Irby. Here his amiable and exemplary con- 
duct gained him great esteem and affection ; and 
when some of his intimate friends expressed con- 
cern lest his youth and extreme diffidence should 
embarrass him in the performance of family prayer, 
where many persons of rank and learning were 
frequently present, he answered nobly, " this does 
not aflfect me at all, for I consider myself standing 
in a greater presence than theirs." He was obser- 
ved to be very frugal in his way of living, that he 
might save something at the end of the year, to send 
his father, who had suffered great losses by fire. 
Filial reverence, and strong affection for his friends, 
were among the most striking excellences of his 
character. 

From his chaplaincy, he was removed to the pas- 
toral care of the town of Nantwich, and was soon dis- 
tinguished as a systematic, and laborious preacher, 
careful in visiting the sick and afflicted, faithful in 
catechising and instructing the children of his peo- 
ple, and affectionate in the administration of ordi- 
n^mc^s. In baptism he received the child from the 



RfiV. SAMUEL LAWRENCE. 149 

arms of the parent, and after discoursing with him on 
the great importance of the deposit, returned it with a 
solemn charge to bring it up in the fear of God, and 
in the faith of Christ. He accustomed himself to 
preach every Saturday at noon, because it was 
market day, and generally a great assemblage of 
country people convened, whom he hoped a few 
serious truths would help to prepare for the duties 
of the Sabbath. 

When some of his friends requested him to adapt 
his labors more to the delicacy of his constitution, 
he answered, " the strength that my master gives 
me, I delight to use in his work, and do not desire 
to live a day longer than I may do him some ser- 
vice." At the head of a family his whole conduct 
was strikingly conscientious ; his morning and 
evening worship was performed with regularity and 
fervor ; his public sermons repeated privately and 
explained to his household, and his whole aim to 
render religion desirable and pleasant to his children 
and domestics. For the improvement of some 
young men intended for the ministry, he began to 
read a course of university learning, especially 
Philology and Philosophy, and would accept of no 
compensation for his trouble, but in that, as well 
as in innumerable instances beside, proved that he 
did good for goodness' sake. He was of a peace- 
able and gentle temper, bearing and forgiving in- 
juries, and his whole deportment was blameless and 
conciliating. Though his constitution was feeble 
he was never prevented from officiating in the pulpit 
by sickness, the whole time he was at Nantwich, 
more than 24 years, until the Lord's day before 
his death, when he was confined with a distressing 



160 BIOGRAPHY OF PIOUS PERSONS. 

fever. With composure and many prayers he com- 
mitted hinfiself to the divine disposal, and when in 
the last agonies of dissolving nature, said to his 
weeping friends, " I do not fear, I do not fear," 
and thus died peacefully in the ninth day of 
his disease, and 51st year of his age, Thursday, 
April 24th, 1712. 



MARY SECOND, ^UEEN OP 
GREAT BRITAIN. 



Mary, the daughter of James Second, was bom 
in the year 1662, and at the age of 16, married to 

the prince of Orange, aflerwards, Wil- 
1662. Ham Third of Great Britain. She was 

extremely handsome, " but her person,'* 
says her historian, " was the beautiful temple of a 
stUl fairer soul." The dignity of her manners in- 
spired reverence, while her sweet and affable coun- 
tenance rendered that majesty attractive. She ex- 
hibited early indications of a happy disposition, by 
being kind and gentle before she knew it was her 
duty to be so. This amiable temper grew up with 
her ; and it is asserted that in the whole course of 
her education she never gave her teachers occasion 
for reproof. Very early in youth she removed from 
her native country to Holland, but though at an age 
generally termed giddy, she went under the guid- 
ance of so much discretion — was so gentle and 
obliging in her deportment — so charitable and com- 
passionate — so universally exemplary — that she at- 
tracted the esteem and love of all ranks of people 
in the United Provinces. Their affection bordered 
on rapture, and their veneration, though no more 
than her due, seemed to those who knew her not al- 



162 BIOGRAPHY OF PIOUS PERSONS. 

most excessive. Tliough both her parents professed 
the Roman Catholic Religion, she was a Protestant 
in principle, and when her father wrote her a letter 
in favor of Popery, she replied with such weighty 
arguments, with such spirit, firmness, and intelli- 
gence, as convinced him that her belief was not to 
be shaken, and precluded all further solicitations on 
the subject. 

In 1688, after James Second, had abdicated the 
throne of England, she, in conjunction with her hus- 
band, received from both houses of Parliament, an 
invitation to return and assume the honors of royal- 
ty. To this, her consent was not gained, without 
serious deliberation, and painful reluctance. A 
crown and sceptre could not dffzzle the strong eye 
of her mind ; she remembered that the throne to 
which she was invited, had been rendered vacant by 
the arbitrary conduct, and blind bigotry of her fa- 
ther, and to fill it herself while he survived was an 
idea scarcely supportable. Yet while she was con- 
tinually reminded that the good of her native coun- 
try, and the suffering interests of the Protestant reli- 
gion demanded her acceptance, her mind yielded 
eventually to what her feelings revolted from ; — 
though while she endeavored to support her dignity 
with apparent satisfaction, her heart was oppressed 
almost to sinking. 

A sense of religion and duty did not influence 
her in this great and important step alone, — but was 
observable in her constant deportment. She lived 
a life of extraordinary piety, and was punctually ex- 
act in her attention to all the public offices of reli- 
gion, and the exercises of secret devotion. Neither 
business, journies, or the care of public atFairs were 



MARY SECOND. 153 

suffered to prevent or shorten the daily duty of se- 
cret prayer. This was in no instance neglected, for 
she judged that the blessing of the whole day, de- 
pended upon it. She religiously observed the Sab- 
bath, and attended public worship, three, and often 
four times. She was constant in her monthly at- 
tendance on the Sacrament, particularly attentive on 
her preparations for it, and usually devoted the pre- 
ceding day to prayer and fasting. In the public 
worship of God, she was a bright example of sol- 
emn, unaffected devotion. Her whole attention 
was fixed on the sacred services, and not a single 
glance wandered to surrounding objects. She re- 
membered that she was in the presence of the King 
of kings, and such was her gravity and reverence, 
that she seemed to spread the spirit of devotion 
around her. She discovered no uneasiness at hear- 
ing an indifferent preacher ; and when asked how 
she could be so attentive to sermons of very inferi- 
or merit, she would reply, " that she thought it did 
not become her by any part of her behaviour to dis- 
courage, or even seem to dislike one who was doing 
his best." She endeavored to difiuse a spirit of piety 
into all who approached her : she was continually 
dispersing good books ; and frequently ordered them 
to be laid in places of attendance, that the servants 
who were in waiting, might have both entertainment 
and instruction. 

She was anxious to raise the reputation of tlie clergy, 
as a method of advancing religion ; and resolved that 
tlieir only recommendation to her particular favor 
should be, exemplary lives, faithfulness in labor, 
watchfulness in instructing, counselling and cherish- 
inji their flock, and a conversation becoming godli- 
13 



164 BIOGRAPHY OF PIOUS PERSONS. 

ness. She greatly wished for an union of all who 
believe in the gospel, and judged that the true end 
of power, and the best exercise of it, was to do good. 
She would often say, " Nothing can render high sta- 
tions pleasant, or even supportable, but the power of 
doing good, and I wonder the true satisfaction at- 
tending goodness does not engage princes to pursue 
it more ardently." Her bounties were frequent and 
liberal. Those unfortunate Protestants, who fled 
from the persecutions of France, and those who es- 
caped from the confusions in Ireland, had their exile 
mitigated, and their distresses relieved by her com- 
passion. 

She was particularly attentive to discover and 
supply the necessities of persons of real merit, who 
had been reduced by misfortune. She obtained a 
royal provision for wounded and decayed seamen, 
caused them to be comfortably maintained, and 
to have the privileges of religious instruction. She 
erected schools where they were needed, and pro- 
cured a noble endowment for a college in tlie Ame- 
rican States, of which she presented a scheme, ac- 
curately drawn up, to the King. She even extended 
her munificence to the poor in distant lands, and to 
foreign churches that were necessitous. The scat- 
tered remains of the Protestants who had been 
hunted out of their vallies in Piedmont, she embo- 
died and preserved. For the remnant of the Bo- 
hemian churches she established nurseries of religion 
in tliose parts of Germany which had become ex- 
hausted by the miseries of war. But even a royal 
treasury could not have answered the demands of 
her extensive charity, had she been less attentive 
aud exact in its distribution. Hence she was care- 



MARY SECOND. 155 

fill to obtain accurate accounts, both of the necessi- 
ties and merits of the candidates for her liberality, 
and in dispensing it, displayed as much persever- 
ance, judgment and diUgence, as if she had no 
cares of a diflerent nature. She was very far from 
ostentation in her benevolence ; and whenever it 
was alluded to by others, passed from it to other 
subjects, as though she could not endure it. 

In her were united active zeal, and constant delight 
in doing good, with such unatfected humility, and 
indiflerence to applause, that the most critical ob- 
servers could perceive in her no propensity to vanity, 
or glorying in her own deeds. Her charities were 
conducted with the greatest possible secrecy, and 
whenever it was practicable, her own hand was the 
silent almoner. None knew what she gave, or to 
whom, except those whom she was compelled to 
employ in the communication of her bounty, and 
they were under injunctions of secrecy, for she gave 
not alms to be applauded of men. It gave her great 
pain to hcjir of the licentiousness and impiety that 
prevailed in diflerent parts of the nation, and she 
exerted herself to suppress the irregularities which 
she heard were countenanced in the British fleets 
and armies. Next to open impiety, the coldness 
of professing Christians, and the disunion of the Pro- 
testant churches, afiecled her, and she would often 
say with the greatest feeling, " Can such dry bones 
live ?» 

Of time she was a most faithful steward. She 
compared her life to an hour-glass, which wag con- 
tinually diminishing, and every sand to be account- 
ed for. She viewed indolence as the great enemy 
of human nature ; and believed that the mind which 



166 BIOGRAPHY OF PIOUS PERSONS. 

had no employment, would create itself the worst. 
\^^hen, therefore, her eyes were weakened by intense 
reading, she resorted to needle-work, which she pur- 
sued with as much diligence as if her own labor 
was her sole support. W hile thus employed, she 
took care to furnish entertainment for those who 
had the honor to work with her, by appointing one 
to read aloud something pleasing and instructive. 
Few of her sex ever gave less time to dress, or 
seemed less interested in it. 

When the ceremonies of court required her to 
appear with more splendor, she constantly read 
aloud, that those employed about her person might 
receive instruction, and frequently mingled her read- 
ing with such remarks, that they considered the 
comment better than the original. Never was 
mistress both feared and loved more entirely than 
she was. She charmed her domestics by wise in- 
structions, and won them by her kindness. She 
softened the afflictions of the unhappy by the share 
she took in them, and guided those who were ig- 
norant. It was easy for her to reward, and hard to 
punish ; yet when circumstances required, she 
showed a firmness which the importunity of others, 
and even her own native tenderness, could not 
shake. She possessed a sincerity, which convinced 
every one that all about her was uniform and con- 
sistent. 

She never borrowed assistance from art, or cov- 
ered her designs with flattering expressions ; and 
when she did not intend to promise, took care to ex- 
plain her meaning so clearly, that none might in- 
dulge ungrounded expectations. And such was the 
strictness of her integrity, that during a period of 



MA.RY SECOND. 157 

many years no explanation was necessary to justify 
either a word or action. The frankness of her 
mind and conduct was guarded by the strictest dis- 
cretion. Those who knew her best, and saw her 
most frequently, could never discover her thoughts 
or intentions farther than she chose. No change 
of countenance drew any thing from her which 
she did not mean to impart ; and this reserve was 
demanded by her exalted station, and the momen- 
tous affairs in which she was daily conversant. 
She was remarkably free from pride, vanity and 
passion. Her serene countenance was a crystal 
which discovered the serenity within. Jler breast 
was like some pure stream, unruffled by the lightest 
breeze. The modesty and sanctity of her mind 
were so undissemblcd, that impurity shrank from 
her presence. No natural defects, or faults of cha- 
racter, were ever the subjects of her mirth ; she 
thought it cruel and barbarous to be merry at the 
misfortunes or follies of others. She was pleased 
with Archbishop Tillotson's sermon against Evil- 
Speaking, and when she thought any were inclined 
to detraction, would delicately reprove them by in- 
quiring if they had ever read it. 

As she uttered no calumnies herself, she was re- 
markably exempt from those of others, and on be- 
ing reminded of this felicity, meekly replied, '* I 
ascribe it wholly to the goodness of God ; for I 
doubt not that many fall under severe censures who 
deserve them as little." What is good, and what 
is great in human nature, were so equally blended, 
and shone so brightly in her, that it is difficult to say 
tor which she was most remarkable. She was dis- 
tinguished for clearness of apprehension, exactness 
13* 



158 BIOGRAPHY OF PIOUS PERSONS. 

of memory, solidity of judgment, and correctness 
of expression. She discovered superior genius, 
and felicity of imagination, even when conversing 
on common subjects. 

She read the best authors, in English, Dutch, and 
French, three languages which were equally famil- 
iar to her. She gave most of her hours to the study 
of the Scriptures, and books connected with them, 
and thus acquired an extensive knowledge of Divi- 
nity. Next to this. Modern History, especially 
that of her own country, engaged much of her at- 
tention. Of Poetry she was at once a lover and a 
judge ; and liked it best when devoted to the best 
subjects. She acquainted herself with Natural 
History, and Drawing in Perspective ; — was accu- 
rate in Geography, and acquired a knowledge of 
Mathematics and Philosophy. Her proficiency 
was remarkable, considering the great weakness of 
her eyes, and the many hours she spent in her 
closet. For fashionable amusements she had no 
relish ; her favorite entertainments were Gardening 
and Architecture, in which she gave considerable 
indulgence to her taste. She sometimes feared 
these had engrossed too much of her attention, and 
would say, " yet as they have employed many 
hands which might otherwise have been idle, I hope 
I may be forgiven." 

Thus amiable as a private character, if we view 
her as a queen, she will shine with additional lustre. 
Few ever possessed so great a capacity for govern- 
ment, with so little inclination to exercise it. Yet 
what she reluctantly Bssumed, and cheerfully relin- 
quished, she managed with the greatest skill and 
propriety. Called often, by the absence of the 



MARY SECOND. 169 

king, to preside in the administration, she ruled in 
a manner worthy of herself; governing the affec- 
tions of the people, and erecting her throne in their 
hearts. She was gentle in commanding, cau- 
tious in promising, generous in rewarding, pa- 
tient in her audiences, and indefatigable in her at- 
tentions to the complicated concerns of govern- 
ment. That nothing might be done in haste, the 
day was early begun, that without shortening her 
devotions she might attend to every small as well 
as great concern, and maintain the customary cere- 
monies, and cheerfulness of a court. Where con- 
science clearly decided a duty, she was firm and im- 
movable ; and while her amiable conduct disarmed 
the greater part of her enemies, her wisdom and se- 
cresy effectually defeated the designs of the few who 
remained inveterate. 

When visible danger presented, her firmness of 
mind and conduct were truly remarkable. Invasion 
was expected from France, in the early part of her 
reign, and while her husband was contending in a 
distant place, she resolved if they should put their 
threats in execution, to take the head of her armies, 
and cither save her • people, or perish with them. 
The first exercise of royal power must have been 
painful indeed. Her father, at the head of a for- 
midable army, approached to claim his abdicated 
throne ; her husl)and went forth to oppose him, and 
she, encumbered with the weight of government, 
remained in suspense whether to bemoan the death 
of a husband or a father — whether to see the in- 
terests of the Protestant religion flourish, or to fly 
herself before the scourge of the Papists. To 
preserve the life of cither, she said, she would wil- 
lingly sacrifice her own. 



160 BIOGRAPHY OF PIOUS PERSONS. 

During this state of torturing suspense, she 
trusted in an arm of Almighty strength, and night 
and day her prayers ascended before the Most 
High. When she was at length informed of her 
husband's victory at the Boyne, and that her father 
though defeated was safe, she gave free vent to her 
tears, and exclaimed — " My heart has not trembled 
at my own danger, so much as at the thought of the 
scene acted at the Boyne ; but God has heard my 
prayers, and I bless him for it, with as sensibfe a 
joy as I ever knew." She was repeatedly in the 
administration in very troublesome times, when 
wars and invasions called William to the field ; and 
she always said that her inquietudes were soothed 
and tranquillized by prayer. In her brightest sea- 
sons she grew not secure or unmindful of her de- 
pendance on God. The pleasures of a court had 
little place in her heart, and she maintained an ha- 
bitual indifference to them. 

In the conjugal relation she was uniformly ex- 
emplary. The king possessed her highest afTec- 
tion and confidence, and whether present or absent 
was borne upon her prayers. A collection of let- 
ters written to him while he was engaged in the 
wars of Ireland, are still preserved, and exhibit her 
in an interesting and amiable light. They amount 
to the number of thirty-seven in three months, and 
prove that she must have been economical of her 
time, to write so much and so frequently, amidst her 
studies, her devotions, and the innumerable cares 
of a great nation. " She was," says Bishop Bur- 
net, " so tender and respectful a wife, that she seem- 
ed to go beyond the most perfect 'idea to which in- 
vention has been able to rise. The lowest condi- 



MARY SECOND. 161 

tion of life, or the greatest inequality of fortune, 
has not afforded a more complete pattern. Ten- 
derness and complacency seemed to strive which 
should be the most eminent. She had no higher 
satisfaction in tlie greatness that descended upon 
her, than that it gave her an occasion of making her 
husband a present worthy of himself. IN or had 
crowns or thrones any charm so pleasant to her, as 
that they raised liim to a greatness which he so 
well deserved, and could so well maintain. She 
was all zeal and rapture when anything was to be 
done that could express either aflection or respect 
to him." 

During casual indispMition, and even in health, 
it was customary for this excellent queen to medi- 
tate upon death and prepare for it ; and the tran- 
quillity which she had felt at its distsmt view, did 
not vanish when it indeed approached. Amid the 
sighs and tears of all around her, she was serene 
and peaceful. So high did she rise above mortality, 
that even her husband, who was more to her than all 
the world beside, could not inspire her with any 
desire of returning back to life. In that hour when 
the most artificial grow sincere, when hypocrisy 
drops its mask, and discloses the soul to view, it 
appeared how sincere and sublime was her piety. 
" I have been instructed," siiid she, " how very 
hazardous it is to rely upon a death bed repentance ; 
I am not now to begin the great work of preparing 
for death, and I praise God I am not afraid of it." 
She added that she experienced the joys of a good 
conscience, and the power of rehgion giving her 
supports, which not even the last agonies could 
shake. 



162 BIOGRAPHY OF PIOUS PERSONS. 

She seemed to have nothing left to be arranged 
in her last hours. Her mind was free from anxie- 
ties of every kind, and calm as the still, small voice 
which seemed to be calling her soul away to the 
regions above. An entire resignation to the will 
of God, and a willingness to be dissolved, did not 
forsake her for a moment. Her gentleness and 
tender attentions to all about her wore still eminent. 
While she was awake her most delightful exercise 
was prayer ; and so sensible a refreshment did she 
find in it, that she said it gave her more ease than 
any thing which was done for her. Nature sank 
rapidly. She received the sacrament with a devo- 
tion vphich at once animated and melted all who 
were present. That being over slie seemed on the 
wing ; and gave herself up so entirely to medita- 
tion as scarcely to regard any thing earthly. Hea- 
ven blessed her with a dismission so easy, that she 
would scarce have known herself to be sick, but 
by what was done for her. Thus she put off mor- 
ality and in the thirty-second year of her age passed 
from an earthly to an incorruptible crown. 

The distress of King William during her sick- 
ness, astonished those who knew the tirmness of 
his mind, and the steadiness of his disposition. He 
was frequently m an agony of grief, fainting often, 
till there appeared to be no life in him, then recov- 
ering and bursting into violent lamentations. The 
third day of her illness, he called Bishop Burnet 
into his closet. Bursting into tears he cried out, 
" There is no hope of the queen : and 1 from the 
happiest am going to be the most miserable man 
on earth. During the whole course of our mar- 
riage I have never seen a single fault in her, and 



MARY SECOND. 163 

she possesses worth which no one knows fully beside 
myself." ^VTien she died, his spirit sunk so low, 
tliut there was great reason to fear he was following 
her ; and for several weeks he was so little master 
of himself as to be incapable of attending to busi- 
ness, or seeing company. When Dr. Tennison 
went to comfort the mourning monarch, he answer- 
ed, " I cannot but grieve ; for I have lost a wife 
who for seventeen years was never guilty of an 
indiscretion." 

From the many elegies which this mournful event 
called forth, I select two stanzas from an ode writ- 
ten by the poet Prior, and presented to King Wil- 
liam : • 

For her the wise and great sliall mourn, 
When late records her deeds repeat; 
Ages to come and men unborn 
Stiall bless iter name, and sigh her fate. 

Fair Albion shall with faithful trust 
Her holy queen's sad relics guard, 
Till heaven awakes the preciousdust 
And gives the saint her full reward. 



JOHN HARVEY. 



John Harvev, was the son of a Dutch merchant 
resident hi London, bom in the year 
1664. 1664, and piously educated. When 
very young, he began to speak plain, 
and with as much judgment ds children usually do 
at five years old ; yet his parents, considering him 
too much of an infant to attend school, restrained 
him from it, greatly against his inclination. But 
before he was three years of age, and while they 
supposed him engaged in his little sports near the 
house, he discovered a school house in the neigh- 
borhood, went without the knowledge of his parents, 
and entreated the teacher to accept him as a scholar. 
He attended to instruction with so much diligence 
and gravity, that he was soon able to read with 
propriety, and made an astonishing progress in the 
common branches of learning, before most children 
are masters of their alphal)et. 

This extraordinary child • would frequently ask 
very serious questions respecting his soul and the 
eternal state, ami was very careliil not to do any- 
thing which ho supposed was displeasing lo God. 
Perceiving his mother to be much sunk in sorrow at 
the death of a beloved brother, he came to her and 
said, " Though my uncle is dead, do not the Scrip- 



JOHN HARVEY. 165 

tures say he must rise ajo^in? — I must die ; and so 
must every body : yet it caiuiot be long before Christ 
ishidl come to judge the world, and then we shall see 
one another again. I pray you, mother, do not 
weep so much." The astonished mourner sat 
silently reflecting on his words, and found for a 
tinje, her deep anguish for her brother changed 
into admiration of her child. One day, seeing one 
of his relations come into his father's house, rather 
intoxicated as he supposed, he went directly to him, 
weeping bitterly, and bogged him earnestly not to 
spend his time ui such sinful courses, which injured 
liis own soul, and oflended his God. 

When he was in company with other children, he 
•would admonish them of their duty, and warn them 
against sinning with tlieir tongues ; but he delighted 
greatly in the society of learned and pious men, and 
they observed that his conversation was not like 
that of a child, so much as of a scholar and a 
Christian. He was strict in the observance of the 
Sabbath ; frequent and constant in the duty of secret 
prayer, and would sometimes continue on his knees 
for a whole hour. Though he endeavored to be 
entirely concealed in his seasons of devotion, a 
friend who noticed the regularity of his retirement, 
and was anxious to know what such a child could 
make the subject of his petitions, drew near unob- 
served, and heard him praying very earnestly, lor 
the welfare of the church of God, that the gospel 
might spread over the whole world, and that divine 
grace might be more abundant in the hearts of 
Christians. 

He was a very humble, modest child, entirely 
above the vanities of dress, contented with plain 
14 



166 BIOGRAPHV OF PIOUS PERSONS. 

or mean diet, and very careful never to eat without 
devoutly entreating the blessing of God. He was 
compassionate and charitable to all in distress, 
wherever he could find them. There was once a 
Turk brought providentially into the place where he 
lived, and his mind was so exercised in pity for liim, 
that he took no rest till he had found a person who 
understood his language, and brought them together. 
The first thing he requested of his friend, was to 
inquire of him if he acknowledged a Deity, to which 
he answered that he did. " Ask him," said the 
child, " what he thinks of our Lord Jesus Christ." 
At this question the Turk was troubled, avoided 
discourse, and complained that he was thirsty and 
hungry. The compassionate boy immediately ran 
to a neighboring house and begged some food, and 
then to a brew-house, entreating the master to give 
him a cup of beer, " For, sir," said he, " here is a 
poor stranger athirst ; we know not where we may 
bo cast before we die." • 

His family hearing of the circumstances reproved 
him ; " I did it," said he, " for a poor stranger, and 
I did it, also, that he might think the bettor of 
Christians, and of the Christian religion." — This 
extraordinary child blended with his piety, an ardent 
love of literature, made great progress at the Jjatin 
school, and was much beloved by his instructors. 
When he was eleven years of age his eldest sister- 
was taken ill of an infectious distemper, and while 
they were praying for her he would \\co[> and .sob 
bitterly ; but when she died ho said, "• The will of the 
Lord be done. Blessed be his name. My dear 
mother, you must submit yoiuself as Uavid did." 
As if ho had a premonition of his own death, he 



JOHN HARVEV. 167 

spent all his time in religious exercises, in reading 
tlie Bible, and " Saints' Everlasting rest," and writ- 
ing pious meditations. 

Fourteen days after tho death of his sister, he 
was attacked with the same disease, and bore his 
pains not only with patience, but cheerfulness ; " for 
I am assured," said he, " that my sins are pardoned, 
and that I shall go to heaven." As he lay in the 
agonies of death, he was troubled at the turbulence 
of his mother's grief: "know you not," said he, 
" that this is the hand of the Almighty ? Humble 
yourself before him, and bow in submission to his 
will;" and then raising himself up, bowed lowly, 
and went to his everlasting rest, at the age of eleven 
years and nine months. 



DR. HERMAN BOERIIAAl E. 



Herman Boerhaave, one of the most illustrious 
physicians that the world ever produced, was the 
son of a clergyman at Veerhont, a 
1668. small village near Leyden, in Holland, 
and . born on the 31st of December, 
1668. At the age of 14 he was sent to the public 
school of Leyden, and such was his astonishing 
proficiency, that at the conclusion of the year, when 
he was scarcely 15, he became a distinguished m(^n- 
ber of the highest class, which after six months stu- 
dy is allowed to pass to the University. About the 
time of his admission to that seminary, a dark shade 
was cast over his prospects, by the death of his fa- 
ther, who left a numerous family in reduced circum- 
stances. At this early age he found himself sur- 
rounded with the perplexities of life, without parents, 
protection, advice or fortune. But the care of Di- 
vine Providence supported and encouraged him in 
his difficulties, and carried him successfully through 
the period of his education. 

Ilis proficiency in the difiercnt branches of sci- 
ence was admired by all ; and when he took his 
degree in philosophy, he exhibited a thesis in oppo- 
sition to the erroneous systems of Epicurus, 1 lob- 
bes, and Spinoza, which greatly raised his roputa- 



DR. HERMAN BOERHAAVE. 169 

tion for piety and erudition. After laying a solid 
foundation in all other parts of learning, he proceed- 
ed to the study of divinity under two celebrated pro- 
fessors, one of whom gave lectures on Hebrew 
antiquities, the other on ecclesiastical history. Above 
all he dili;^ently applied himself to the study of the 
Scriptures in their original languages, with their in- 
terpretation by all the ancient writers, whom he read 
in chronological order, beginning with Clemens Ro- 
manus. \Vith these pursuits he mingled the study 
of nature, and the whole range of the science of 
medicine, and in this he found a lucrative and hon- 
orable employment, when unfavorable circumstan- 
ces prevented him Irom embracing the clerical pro- 
fession, to which his inclination led him. Some 
time after leaving the university he had to contend 
with the evils of poverty, and was obliged to become 
a teacher of mathematics to procure the necessa- 
ries of life. 

But though his labors at that time could hardly 
gain a subsistence, yet when his merits as a physi- 
cian became known, he found wealth flowing in upon 
him like a flood, and at the time of his death left a 
fortune of more than £ 200,000, as a monument of 
■what honest and well directed industry can perform. 
He received the employments of Professor of Che- 
mistry, Professor of Botany, and Professor of Medi- 
cine in the university of Leyden, and his reputation 
began to spread over all Europe. The Royal So- 
ciety of London, and the Academy of Sciences at 
Paris elected him an honorary member of their res- 
pective bodies, and the city of Leyden, through his 
instructions, became the school of Europe for med- 
icine, botany, and the natural sciences. All the 
14* 



170 BIOGRAPHY OF PIOUS PERSONS. 

European princes commitled pupils to his care, who 
found in this skilful professor, an indefatigable 
teacher, and a tender friend, encouraging them in 
labor, consoling them under aflliction, and relieving 
them in their necessities. 

When Peter the Great, in 1715, went to Holland 
to perfect himself in maritime affairs, he attended 
the lectii.ir of Boerhaave, and, as a pupil, received 
hislesM'i^^. His reputation spread over Asia, and 
the esisteru nations, and so well was his name known 
in those distant regions, that a letter written to him 
from a mandarine in China, with this inscription,^ 
" To the illustrious Boerhaave, physician in Eu- 
rope," came regularly to him without mistake or de- 
lay. Amidst all his honors he retained an humble 
estimation of himself, and united to an uncommon 
genius, and extraordinary talents, those qualities of 
the heart which render them valuable to society. 

The activity of his mind sparkled in his eyes, his 
appearance was simple and unassuming, and when 
deep study and age had changed the color of his 
hair he was particularly noticed for that venerable 
aspect which prepossesses affection, and confirms 
reverence. He was an eloquent orator, and de- 
claimed with dignity and grace : he taught very me- 
thodically and with great precision, and his auditors 
always regretted that his discourses were so soon 
finished. He would sometimes give them an infu- 
sion of raillery, but it was refined and ingenious ; 
and enlivened the subject, without sai-casm or sever- 
ity. 

He was a declared foe to all excess, yet not 
austere, but cheerful and desirous of promoting eve- 
ry valuable purpose ef conversation ; communica- 



DR. HERMAN BOERHAAVE. 171 

live, yet modest ; in contending for the truth, zeal- 
ous, though dispassionate ; in friendship, sincere — 
constant — aflfectionate ; in every situation and rela- 
tion of hfe, virtuous ; and it may be confidently 
affirmed, that no man in a private station ever at- 
tracted more universal esteem. At the age of 42 
he married the only daughter of the burgomaster of 
Leyden, and amidst all his domestic and professional 
avocations found time to compose a number of liter- 
ary works. Surprising accounts have been given 
of his sagacity and penetration in the exercise of 
the healing art ; yet he was very far from a presump- 
tous confidence in his skill, or arrogance at his su- 
periority of success. 

He was diligent in his profession, condescending 
to all, and wholly free from that pride and vanity 
which wealth sometimes excites in weak minds. He 
used often to remark that " the life of a patient, if 
trifled with or neglected, would one day be required 
at the hand of the physician." His benevolence 
led him to the care of those who were too poor to 
compensate him. " These," he would say, " are my 
best patients, for God is their paymaster." He was 
an eminent example of temperance, of fortitude, of 
humility and devotion. His piety, with a religious 
sense of his dependence upon God, was the basis 
of all his virtues, and the moving principle of his 
whole conduct. He was too sensible how deeply 
he partook of the weakness of human nature to 
ascribe any good thing to himself, or to conceive he 
could conquer his passions or vanquish temptation 
by his own unassisted power. He attributed every 
good thought and laudable action to the Author of 
all goodness. So deep was his conviction of the 



172 BIOGRAPHY OF PIOUS PERSONS. 

depravity of his nature, and so profound his humil- 
ity, that when he heard of any criminal condemned 
to die, he would say, " who can tell whether this man 
is not better than 1 ? or if I am belter it is not to be 
ascribed to myself, but to the goodness of God." 

The charity and benevolence so conspicuous in 
his whole life were derived from a supreme regard 
to religion. It was his daily practice all his life, as 
soon as he arose in the morning, which was gener- 
ally very early, to retire an hour for private prayer 
and meditation on parts of the Scripture. When 
his friends inquired how it was possible for him to 
support the fatigues of his active profession, he 
would answer that " it was his morning hour of med- 
itation and prayer that gave him spirit and vigor in 
the business of the day." He recommended this 
practice to others, as the best rule he could give 
them ; " for nothing," he would say, " conduces more 
to health of body and tranquillity of mind, and I 
know nothing which can support me or my fellow 
creatures, amidst the various distresses of life, but a 
well grounded confidence in the Supreme JJcing, 
upon the principles of Christianity, lie made the 
excellence of the Christian Religion the frequent 
subject of his conversation, and asserted on all 
proper occasions the divine origin and efficacy of 
the Scriptures. He recommended to his friends a 
careful observation of the precept of Moses con- 
cerning the love of God and man ; and affirmed 
that a strict obedience to the doctruies, and a diligent 
imitation of the examples of our blessed Saviour, 
were the foundation of all true happiness. He for- 
med his ideas of God from what he had revealed of 
himself in his word, and paid an absolute subrais- 



DR. HERMAN BOERHAAVE. 173 

sion to his will, without endeavoring to search out 
the reason of his determinations ; and this he con- 
sidered as the first and most inviolable duly of u 
Christian. His literary, moral, and religious excel- 
lence of character, could not exempt him from ene- 
mies ; but he never regarded calumny or detraction. 
He said " the surest remedy against scandal, was to 
live it down by perseverence in well doing, and by 
prayer to God to cure the distempered minds of 
those who traduce or injure us." A friend who had 
often admired his patience under great provocations, 
inquired by what means he had so entirely suppres- 
sed the impetuous passion of anger ; he answered 
with the greatest frankness and sincerity, " I am nat- 
urally full of resentment, but by daily prayer and 
meditation have at length attained this command 
over my passions." 

In his last illness, which was extremely lingering, 
painful and afflictive, his constancy and firmness 
djd not forsake him. He neither intermitted the 
necessary care of life, or forgot the serious prepa- 
ration for death. Three weeks before his dissolu- 
tion, when a most learned and exemplary divine vis- 
ited him at his country house, he requested to join 
with him in prayer, and afterward entered into deep 
and interesting discourse upon the spiritual and im- 
material nature of the soul, which he perspicuously 
illustrated by describing the effects that the infirmi- 
ties of the body had upon his faculties, which they 
did not oppress or vanquish, but his soul was al- 
ways master of itself, always resigned to the pleas- 
ure of its Maker ; — adding, " he who loves God, 
ought to think nothing desirable, but what is most 
pleasing to the supreme goodness." 



174 BIOGRAPHY OF PIOUS PERSONS. 

These sentiments were demonstrated by his con- 
duct ; as death approached nearer, he was so far 
from terror or confusion, that he seemed more cheer- 
ful and less sensible of pain. He died on the 25th 
September, 1738, in the seventieth year of his luie ; 
much honored — beloved and lamented. His funeral 
oration was spoken in Latin at the university of Ley- 
den before a very numerous audience, and his works 
afterwards published in 5 large quarto volumes. 
The city of Leyden erected a monument to this 
illustrious man, — an uni and pedestal of marble, 
bearing many emblematical devices, surmounted 
with a medallion of him whom it commemorated, 
encircled with his own favorite and expressive mot- 
to, " Truth tmarrayed.^^ 



DR. SAMUEL BENIOBT. 



Samuel Beniok was born at a small parish, in 
the county of Salop (Eng.) on the 14th of June, 

1673. His parents were religious people 
1673. of competent estate; he wils their eldest 

son, and bore the name of Samuel, because 
he was asked of God, and devoted to liis service. 
He discovered early indications of genius and piety, 
which were cultivated first at the grammar school of 
Whicksal, and afterwards at the academy of VVirks- 
worth, under the tuition of Mr. S. Ogden, a man of 
great learning and virtue. He was there the darling 
both of the school and town, for his sweetness of tem- 
per, piety, ingenuity, and readiness to oblige all who 
came in his way ; and his situation and studies 
were so delightful to him, that he continued there 
till he reached his eighteenth year. This was a 
much longer period than youths of his proticiency 
usually spend at the grammar school, but he thus 
gained intimate accpiaintancc with the chissics, ren- 
dered his future studies more easy and pleasant, 
and acquired flie power of speaking and writing 
Latin, with great fluency, propriety and beauty. 

^Vhen he first entered that school, in early youth, 
his parents, after his departure, found a paper, ex- 
pressing great thankfulness for the care of liis edu- 



176 BIOGRAPHY OF PIOUS PERSONS. 

cation, requesting their |)rayers for him, and begging 
that they would not indulge too strong an aficction 
for him, or in case of liis sickness or death, mourn 
for him as those who have no hope ; for he knew that 
whether living or dying, it would be well with him. 
When he had finished his term at the grammar 
school, and was about to return home, his instruc- 
tor wept much to part with him, and expressed a 
fear that his school would sufier for the loss of his 
example. 

He was afterwards entered a student at the col- 
lege at Glasgow, in Scotland, having two young 
gentlemen under his care. Here he applied him- 
self with incredible attention, and fre(juently stu- 
died sixteen hours in a day, subsisting uj)on a httle 
food that was brought him to the study. He was 
universally respected at Glasgow, for his great learn- 
ing, diligence, and serious deportment ; and when he 
took his first degree, the Senate of the university hon- 
ored him with the Presidency of all who were lauria- 
ted that year ; a dignity seldom conferred upon any 
but their own natives. At the expiration of his 
term, the regents courted his stay, and promised 
him preferment ; but no motive of gain or ambition 
could longer detain him from his father's house, 
where his coming was waited with the ardent ex- 
pectancy of joy, and his presence diffused serenity 
and happiness. 

However he might have shone as an academi- 
cian, nothing could eclipse the excellence of his 
character as a sou. lu his looks, words and ac- 
tions, he seemed to study to express all'cction and 
respect to his |>arents ; and in his conduct to his 
brothers and sisters, you might trace IVaternal ten- 



DK. SAMUEL BENIGN. 177 

derness mingled with the care of a father. He had 
calculated to devote more time to his studies, in the 
delightful recess of his parental abode, but was 
incessantly importuned by a neighboring congre- 
gation to supply the place of their deceased pas- 
tor. Being then but twenty-three, it was more 
consonant to his inclinations, to study for a time, 
than to preach, and he said he " trembled to think 
of supplying the pulpit of so great a man as Mr. 
Philip Henry ;" and when repeated sohcitation 
at length vanquishetl his diflidence, he selected for 
his text the expostulation of Jereniiidi, " Ah Lord 
God, behold I cannot speak, for 1 am a child." 

He supported the clerical character with dignity 
and propriety, and his performances called forth 
admiration, while they imparted instruction. He 
had a fluency of thought and expression, and was 
lively, fervent and methodical in preaching, prayer, 
and the administration of ordinances. In cate- 
chising the children every Lord's day, he was exact, 
and often successful in impressing their minds 
with the truths that he taught tliem. Every part 
of tlie work gave him pleasure, and he used to say 
that " he preferred the delight he enjoyed in pray- 
ing and preaching, to all the entertainments and 
gratitications of sense." 

His humility led him to estimate slightly his own 
performances, and when any one commended his 
management of the public exercises of his function, 
he would answer, " that it might have been better 
executed by himself, and far better by anotlicr per- 
son, and that he never let't the pulpit without trem- 
bling to think how poorly he had performed his 
duty." 

15 



178 BIOGRAPHY OF PIOUS PERSONS. 

In his childhood his genius led him strongly to the 
practice of physic, and of his own accord he stored 
his memory with medicinal recipes, which he often 
showed ingenuity in applying. Afterwards, as op- 
portunity ofiered, he paid some attention both to its 
theory and practice, that he might be useful to his 
poor neighbors ; and his reputation in that line fur- 
nished him with more business than he desired. In 
the year 1703, being at Glasgow, he was publicly 
examined in his professional knowledge by a con- 
vocation of the heads of the college, from whom he 
received great respect, high testimony of his judg- 
ment and accuracy, and an honorary degree of Doc- 
tor of Medicuie. 

In the practice of the healing art, he was uncom- 
monly successful, and some of the most celebrated 
physicians of that day, have acknowledged him to 
be " one of the most ingenious men, with Avhom 
they had ever held professional consultation." lie 
soon found, however, that this i)usincss fatigued 
both body and mind, and would gladly have discon- 
tinued it, but some would make use of no other 
physician, and his conscience would not sutler him 
to withhold advice from those who were in penury 
or distress. To the poor he gave gratuitously, bofli 
attendance and medicine ; and thus found many 
favorable opportunities of counselling, comforting 
and praying with them. He could not rest satisfied 
to prescribe for the body, and leave the soul un- 
warned of its danger ; and like Luke the evange- 
list, he was indeed "a beloved physician.'' 

His active benevolence induced him also to 
distribute Bibles and good books to the |)Oor, with a 
request to read them diligently ; and yearly to give 



DR. SAMUEL BENION. 179 

money to a good man in the neighborhood, to teach 
a number of poor children to read, with a strict 
charge that none should know who paid him this 
annuity. To this kind and charitable disposition, 
he united a spirit of moderation toward all who dif- 
fered from him in sentiment, and an habitual care to 
give pain or offence to no man. 

In the year 1703, he married Miss Grace Yates, 
whose natural and acquired endowments were con- 
genial to his taste, and whose tenderness shed a new 
charm over his days. 

When his friends observed his great diligence 
in study, exemplary life, and happy talent of im- 
parting knowledge, they were desirous that their 
sons should derive the benefit of such example 
and instructions, and he at length complied with 
their solicitations. Finding many sources of pleas- 
ure from the employment, he consented to enlarge 
his n»mber, and soon formed and regulated an acad- 
emy of thirty students. It was tlie opinion of ma- 
ny that his chief excellency lay in this sphere, for 
Nature seemed to have formed him for a tutor of 
the highest grade of superiority. He had in his 
form, a mixture of grace and dignity, in his counte- 
nance, gravity and sweetness, in his deportment, 
majesty, tempered with mildness. His first appear- 
ance was prepossessing, and while a more intimate 
acquaintzmce unfolded properties tp conciliate affec- 
tion, it exhibited nothing to destroy respect or reve- 
rence. His voice was clear and commanding, and 
heightened the effect of whatever he pronounced, 
while deep classical knowledge, and a reflecting 
mind, qualified him to dictate, or to argue upon eve- 
ry necessary subject with accuracy and eloquence. 



180 BIOGRAPHY OF PIOUS PERSONS. 

He gave lectures to his pupils in their several 
classes every day ; and so enlivened the abstruse 
parts of science, by his interesting manner of ex- 
plaining and applying them, that his students declar- 
ed, that if he was sometimes long he wfis never 
tedious : He delivered many extempore lectures, 
both in Latin and English, on some of the most in- 
tricate points of Philosophy, and such was his quick- 
ness of thought and felicity of expression, that 
they were considered scarcely inferior to his studied 
performances. He composed, for the use of his 
academy, a comprehensive system of Logic, Meta- 
physics, Mathematics, and Ethics ; for his genius 
led him to abstract speculations. 

These branches of Philosophy he understood in 
their depths and refinements, and particularly in 
the departmentof Pneumatics, was making great pro- 
gress at the time of his death, as if his close appli- 
cation to the nature of spirits, was a presage of 
of his own near approach to the world of sjnrits. 
He recommended to his pupils the study of pure 
mathematics, as one highly favorable to internal 
order, patience and perseverance, and well calcu- 
lated to invigorate the mind, by giving to its re- 
searches the certainty of demonstration. 

He was master of the theory of Natural Phi- 
losophy, and acquainted with its modern dicoveries 
and improvements. In comparing opposite schemes 
and hypotheses, he divested himself of all partiality, 
and taught his pupils to preserve freedom of thought, 
that they might search for truth uninfluenced by 
prejudice. 

In Theology, he formed his opinions from the 
Scriptures alone, and not from the doctrines of any 



DR. SAMUEL BENION. 181 

particular sect. Genuine expositions of that perfect 
system, he considered as the best divinity lectures 
he could read, and invited his students to examine 
his opinions, and receive them only as far as they 
were consistent with the word of God. Yet while 
he encouraged freedom of thought and investigation, 
he took great care to fortify their minds with the 
first principles of religion, as the best security 
against scepticism and bigotry. 

He maintained a very strict and steady government 
of his academy, and his sway was founded in rea- 
son, and cemented with reverence and affection. 
He taught his students to employ their morning 
hours well, and to let nothing lead to the neglect of 
regular and secret devotion. He excited them to 
diligence in their hours of study, and while he al- 
lowed them harmless, restrained them from unbe- 
coming recreations. If any were remiss in their 
studies, or careless in their conversation, he reasoned 
with them plainly, but with tenderness. He had an ex- 
cellent faculty, while they were discoursing together, 
of introducing such subjects as led them to reprove 
themselves, by their own remarks ; and they were 
so sensible of it, as frequently to reform, without 
causing him or themselves, the uneasiness of a 
particular reproof. 

But when circumstances required a close and 
personal admonition, he gave it with an affecting 
solemnity, not in anger, but in love, and so as to 
convince the delinquent, that he delighted not to 
shame him, but as " his beloved son he warned him." 
The mildness and firmness of his expostulations, 
would draw tears from those not apt to relent, while 
the tears that treml)led in his own eye, convinced 
15* 



182 BIOGRAPHY OK PIOUS PERSONS. 

them that he was grieved for their misdemeanors. 
These reproofs he followed with solemn prayer ; 
and such a blessing attended his pious endeavors, 
that although he had a large collection of yoimg 
men, of difierent habits, passions and pursuits, yet 
an occasion very rarely occurred for a personal 
reproof or admonition. 

He was a shining example of serious piety, and 
strove to excite and promote it in those under his 
charge. His discourses on the necessity of holiness 
had greater effect upon those to whom they were 
addressed, becaiise its own harmonizing influence 
was visible in his life and conversation. He was 
successful in spiritualizing common occurrences, 
and when reading lectures to his scholars on the 
works or the wonders of Nature, would lead them 
by natural allusions to perceive and to adore the 
God of Nature. He appeared superior to the little 
vexations of life, as if he lived in a more calm and 
undisturbed region, or as if his eye was fixed on 
what he delighted to discourse upon, "things unseen 
and eternal." Those who had no predilection for 
serious subjects, were induced to listen attentively 
to one, who addressed them with such aflection, 
and was to them as a father. " My dear charge," 
he would address them, " if anything I can say 
will be an instrument of advancing your good, I 
have my aim ; or if anything I can do may promote 
your eternal welfare, how happy shall I think 
myself," 

Upon those who were designed for the ministry, 
and drawing near to that important work, he strove 
to impress the necessity of solemn preparation, and 
the danger of unfaithfulness to the souls committed 



DR. SAMUEL RENION. 183 

lo tlieir charge. He labored to instruct them 
thoroughly in the original languages of the Scriptures, 
and as they were in the habit of writing from memory 
his daily expositions, he accustomed them once a 
week to read what they had written, and by compar- 
ing the different transcripts, and conversing with 
freedom and seriousness, new ideas were often 
suggested, and the whole engraved more deeply on 
their minds. 

Once a week, the divinity class, in llieir turns, 
analyzed or expounded a portion of Scripture ; and 
that they might exercise themselves in the gift of 
prayer, the whole academy retired to the lecture 
room after he had perlbrmed tlie evening worship of 
the family, and one of their number perfonned, in 
his turn, that solemn act of devotion, beside the 
more retired service of every chamber, which they 
were warned not to neglect. His house was 
peculiarly a house of prayer, and all the members 
of his family were taught its worth. 

While he was thus attentive to their religious ex- 
ercises, and solid studies, he omitted none of the 
relinements and lighter graces of science. He had 
stated times for their exercise in Oratory and Poetry, 
and in all tluMr compositions encouraged accuracy 
of method, and elegance of language. He was 
assiduous in regulating their elocution and pronun- 
ciation, and at a particular time every week, habitu- 
ated them to read passages from different authors, 
and that he might perceive wherein they were de- 
fective, and show them by his own example, the 
proper tones, emphasis and pauses. His exertions 
were generally acknowledged by his pupils, and 
gratefully received. " Our tutor," writes one of 



184 BIOGRAPHY OF PIOUS PERSONS. 

them," understands the passions of the mind so 
well, and has so great an art of managing tempers 
so as to gain his point, that if he designed it, he 
could easily send out flaming bigots to almost any 
set of principles. But he is too much a Christian, 
a gentleman, and a scholar, to be swallowed up by 
the violence of any party. His aim is to make 
men of sense and rational Christians ; and if we 
fall short of this point, it will not be his fault." 

Much of this excellence in the department of 
education was imputed to his constant prayers for 
divine assistance : for as he acknowledged God in 
all his ways, he found him visibly directing his 
paths. Though his students, forming part of his 
family, had the privilege of joining in his devotions, 
morning and evening, still he conceived it necessa- 
ry, to begin and end their particular studies every 
day with prayer, giving it as a reason " that there 
were many petitions to be put up on their account, 
in which the rest of the family were not interested." 

When a new student entered his academy, he 
prayed for him, and committed him and his stu- 
dies to an Almighty Teacher : when any left his 
care, he affectionately besought the divine bles- 
sing for him, and when any were in trouble and 
sickness, his tears and entreaties at the throne of 
Grace, showed that his heart felt the solicitude of a 
father. 

Only three of all his great number of pupils, died 
while under his care, and he was then seen to hum- 
ble himself and lo mourn, as for a first-born. Co- 
vered with tears, he uttered, " Let me resign my- 
self, and all that is dear to me, into the hand of 
God. It is the Lord, let him do what he will.'* 



DR. SAMUEL BENION. 186 

Beside his public funeral discourses on these mel- 
ancholy occasions, he gave more private ones to the 
academy, from the pathetic lamentation of Job, " He 
came forth like a (lower, and is cut down ;" from 
the admonition of the wise man, " Remember the 
days of darkness ;" and from the answer of the 
mourning mother, in the 2d of Kings, " It is well." 
A discourse of his, uttered after their return from 
one of these funerals, on the happiness of heaven, 
where there is neither parting or weeping, very 
deeply affected the minds of his young men. 

Soon after these afflictions, a most promising stu- 
dent was taken ill of a malignant fever, and brought 
to the gate of death. His physician had given him 
up, and he seemed to be breathing his last, when 
his tutor called together his companions to join in 
prayer for him, and was observed to entreat ear- 
nestly and repeatedly for his life, as one who could 
not be denied, or as if the spirit of strong supplica- 
tion rested upon his lips. At their return from the 
lecture room, they found an astonishing change in 
the dying youth, wh(3 soon after recovered ; and 
this striking circumstance was long preserved in 
the memories of those who witnessed it. 

But while he was thus active for the welfare of 
others, and in the midst of life and usefulness, he 
was attacked by a nervous fever which in a few 
days terminated his career. The evening but one 
before his death, he awoke from a kind of slumber, 
as he sat in his cliair, and observed that he had been 
listening to some extraordinary music, that far ex- 
celled all he had ever before heard. Perhaps this 
was a prelude to that celestial symphony which he 
was soon to join : perhaps this was to prepare 



186 BIOGRAPHY OF PIOUS PERSONS. 

his ear for the more perfect harmony of heaven. 
The violence of disease produced occasional de- 
rangement, but the night before his death he slept 
so sweetly, that his anxious friends entertained 
hopes of his recovery. 

On March 4th, 1707, he awoke in an agony, and 
in a few moments his soul and body were disunited. 
He had lived 34 years, and in that short term com- 
pleted more than many who live until past the usual 
boundary of man. What a house of mourning 
was made on that dismal night, it is difficult to con- 
ceive and impossible to describe. Two aged pa- 
rents, who viewed him as their stay, and their coun- 
sellor, an affectionate wife, who had been but a few 
years united to him, two intant sons, who knew not 
why they wept, thirty students, who mourned as for 
a father, a family, a church and a people, as sheep 
without a shepherd. Few have had more tears 
shed over them at their death, and none have better 
deserved such tears. 



ELIZABETH ROWE. 



Elizabeth Rowe was born at Ilchester, Somerset 
county, England, on the eleventh of 
1674. September, 1674. Her father, Mr. 
Walter Singer, was much esteemed for 
his integrity, benevolence, and simplicity of man- 
ners. His life was a constant coiu-se of kindness 
to the unfortunate, and uniform piety ; and the 
calmness and resignation of his death was a striking 
instance of the power of religion, and the exalted 
state of the human mind, when animated by the 
consciousness of divine favor, and the prospect of 
everlasting bliss. His wife was aUo a pattern of 
virtue and piety, and they had the happiness of 
seeing their two lovely daughters walking in their 
steps, mutually and affectionately emulous in the 
paths of knowledge and religion. But one of them, 
as she entered her twentieth year, was smitten and 
blasted, like some fair flower ; and the other, the 
subject of these memoirs, passed along the path of 
life, lonely and mourning for her companion. Per- 
haps this loss deepened the religious impressions 
that had remained upon her mind from childhood ; 
for, blended with uncommon sprightlinessof temper^ 
was such a reverential awe of divine Majesty, as 
disposed her to the most solemn acts of devotion. 



188 BIOGRAPHY OF PIOUS PERSONS. 

In the pursuit of knowledge she was very assidu- 
ous ; medicine she understood, and practised the 
healing art gratuitously among her indigent neigh- 
bors, who viewed her as a guardian angel. The 
more refined branches of science she easily acquired. 
The French and Italian languages were familiar to 
her : painting, music, and poetry, she practised from 
a child ; but her love for the latter so predomi- 
nated, that it was her principal amusement, and at 
the age of twenty-two she published a volume of 
her effusions. But her uncommon accomplishmejits, 
and attainments, were still inferior to her sweetness 
of disposition, delicacy of manners, and unaffected 
goodness of heart. 

In the year 1710, she was united to Mr. Thomas 
Rowe, a man of great personal accomplishments, 
and literary endowments, and susceptible of that 
delicate and sublime attachment which the perfec- 
tions of his consort were calculated to iusjjire and 
to maintain. But their connul)ia! happiness was 
allayed by his declining health, and destroyed by his 
premature death, in the fifth year of their marriage, 
when he had just entered his 28th year. Aft(;r his 
decease, his amiable consort retired to a secluded 
estate in Froine, Somersetshire, to enjoy that soli- 
tude, and those intellectual pursuits that she loved. 
Here she composed her " Friendship in Death," 
with a desire to impress the belief of the soul's 
immortality, to make it familiar with the thought of 
future existence, and lead it to contract an habitual 
persuasion of it, through llie medium of the imagi- 
nation and affections. With these were connected 
her " Letters, moral and entertaining," whose design 
is, by presenting fictitious examples of disinterested 



ELIZABETH ROWE. 189 

benevolence, and inflexible virtue, to animate the 
reader to practise whatever tends to ennoble human 
nature, or promote the happiness of mankind ; and 
by portraying images of horror, and characters 
disgusting in themselves, to deter the young and 
unwary from pursuits that embitter present life, and 
endanger the happiness of the future. 

In 1736, her "History of Joseph," was published, 
consisting of ten books ; and so rapidly did she 
write, that the two last books were composed and 
perfected in three or four days. Mrs. Rowe was 
blessed with an excellent constitution, which her 
studies, her aflfectious, and a long series of years 
had but httle impaired, till some time in the year 
1736 she was attacked by sickness, which her friends 
feared would prove fatal. On this trying occasion, 
she confessed that she did not feel herself entirely 
free from alarm ; yet when she had deeply reflected 
on the mercy of God, through the mediation of a 
Redeemer, she found such confidence, satisfaction, 
and transport, that she said with tears of joy, " she 
knew not that she had ever felt the like in all her 
life," and repeated to her surroimding friends, the 
" Dying Christian" of Pope, with exquisite feeling, 
and elevated devotion. But she recovered from 
this alarming attack, and by her exact temperance 
and perfect serenity of mind, her constitution ap- 
peared to be reinstated. But she still expressed a 
strong desire to enter on a life of immortality ; and 
when her friends congratulated her on the health 
visible in her countenance, and the prospect of many 
years to come, she would reply, " that it was the 
same as telling a slave that his fetters would be 
16 



190 BIOGRAPHY OF PIOUS PERSONS. 

lasting, or complimenting him on the strength of 
the walls of his dungeon." 

Her blameless life, her trust that her peace was 
made with God, and her habitual preparation for 
death, had so divested him of terror, that he appeared 
only as a messenger to conduct her to more perfect 
felicity. A short time before the event, when in 
perfect health, she communicated to her religious 
friends a firm persuasion that her continuance here 
would be of short duration, wrote solemn and affec- 
tionate letters to be given them after her decease, 
and committed to writing a paper of directions, for 
her servant, in which she gives orders that her 
funeral should be private, and no stone or inscription 
mark the place of her grave. On the day of her 
death she was in perfect health, conversed cheerfully 
in the evening with a friend, and at the usual hour 
retired to her chamber. Soon after, an unusual 
noise was heard, and her servant hastening to her 
apartment, found her prostrate on the floor, speech- 
less, and in the agonies of death. Medical aid was 
found ineffectual, and on the next morning, Sun- 
day, February 28, 1737, she died, in the sixty- third 
year of her age. 

From a religious book that was found laying 
open by her, and a paper on which she had written 
some unconnected sentences, it appears that the last 
moments of her life were spent in devotion ; and as 
it was her stated hour of prayer, she probably passed 
from earthly communion with her Maker, to that 
presence " where there is iulness of joy, to that right 
hand where there are pleasures forevermore." The 
manner of her tteath may be also considered as an 



ELIZABETH HOWE. 191 

answer of prayer, for her written devotions contain 
repeated requests that she might not be sufiered to 
hnger long in the dark passage, and she often 
expressed to her friends a desire of a sudden depar- 
ture, and a fear lest the violence of pain, or Ihe 
languor of decaying nature, might excite an undue 
depression of the mind, and cause her to reflect 
dishonor on the name and profession of a Christian. 

" Though her death be universally lamented," 
says Mr. Graves, " the manner of it is rather to be 
esteemed a part ot her happiness. One moment to 
enjoy this life : the next, after a pause we are not 
sensible of, to find ourselves beyond the fears of 
death, beyond death itself, and in possession of ev- 
erlasting life, healtli and pleasure : this moment to 
be devoutly addressing ourselves to God, or em- 
ployed in delightful meditations on his perfections ; 
the next, to stand in his presence surrounded with 
scenes of bliss, perfectly new and unspeakably 
joyous: — is a way of departing to be desired, 
not dreaded by ourselves ; and felicitated, not con- 
doled, by surviving friends ; when all things are in 
readiness for our removal out of the world, it is a 
privilege to be spared the sad ceremony of parting, 
and all the pains and struggles of decaying nature. 

Mrs. Rowe was agreeable in her person, her 
countenance indicated a softness and benevolence 
beyond description, and yet commanded that degree 
of awe and veneration, that genius and virtue so 
naturally inspire. She spoke gracefully ; her voice 
was singularly sweet and harmonious, and admira- 
bly adapted to convey in all its charms, the elegant 
language that flowed from her lips. Her manners 
were refined, her deportment marked with ease and 



192 BIOGRAPHY OF PIOUS PERSONS. 

unaffected politeness. In her apparel she was 
merely neat ; the business of her toilet did not in- 
terfere with more noble pursuits ; she seemed to 
have conquered all desire of complying with the 
fashionable follies of the times, the vain pomp and 
parade of life ; and she soared above her sex in re- 
sisting the foolish force of custom, and the proud 
dominations of fashion. In early life she discovered 
that inclination for retirement so congenial to the 
votaries of the muses, and retained it to the latest 
period of her life. Her company was courted by 
the great and opulent, and if, prompted by politeness, 
she accepted of occasional invitations, she quitted 
her solitude with reluctance, and returned to it with 
increased pleasure. 

But she possessed none of that rigid censorious- 
ness, supercilious austerity, or unsocial propensity, 
which is apt to adhere to persons of a recluse tem- 
per ; she was as remarkable for every social virtue, 
as for the strict observance of positive injunctions 
of religion. She possessed a mind unruffled by any 
of the common incidents of life, and a sweetness of 
disposition that could not be affected by adverse oc- 
currences, or tlie infirmities of age itself. She was 
so placid in her behaviour to her inferiors and domes- 
tics, that her servants, who lived with her near 20 
years, never observed in her the least indication of 
resentment, except at flagrant instances of impiety 
and inmiorality. She had a most rooted" aversion to 
scandal and calumny, and was scrupulously tender 
of the character of her neighbors. Detraction was 
so odious in her opinion as not to be justified by 
the liveliest sallies of wit, and she never hesitated 
to express her detestation of it when it was iutroduc- 



ELIZABETH ROWE. 193 

ed in her presence ; and surely it is not the most tri- 
fling or least uncommon trait in her character, that 
she was never known to utter an ill-natured, or even 
an indelicate thing. 

Of envy her mind was too exalted to be suscep- 
tible, but always disposed to do justice to merit, 
wherever it was found, and to feel sensible pleasure 
when she could find cause for commendation. And 
when a sense of duty, and regard to the best inter- 
ests of others compelled her to undertake the disa- 
greeable task of reproof, she had the power of sof- 
tening it into gentle remonstrance and affecting dis- 
suasive. She was observed sometimes to com- 
mend persons, who eminently practised some one 
virtue, before some of her friends who were defi- 
cient in that particular excellence, hoping that they 
might be struck with the beauty of the example, and 
induced to follow it. 

Her conversation was singularly pleasing, as she 
had a fund of original ideas, which she conveyed in 
elegant language, with great fluency of diction, un- 
afiected ease, and openness of behaviour. Though 
her accomphshments, from early life, had been the 
theme of much eulogium, yet no vanity was observ- 
able in her ; the whole tenor of her behaviour evin- 
ced a modest diffidence, and amiable humility ; be- 
ing affable and courteous to persons of every rank 
in life. She disliked the course of fashionable 
amusements, avoided as much as possible all par- 
ties of pleasure, and all formal visits, as far as de- 
cency would allow. She disclaimed every kind of 
luxury as derogatory to the dignity of human l)eings, 
who are endowed with reason, and designed for im- 
mortality. Avarice she deemed the most sordid 
16* 



194 BIOGRAPHY OF PIOUS PERSONS. 

ignoble of the human passions, and was so free irom 
it as not to know her own estate from others, till 
motives of prudence obliged her to inform herself. 
She never would suffer her tenants to be threatened 
or distressed when they were in her debt ; and 
though some took advantage of her goodness, she 
would rather suffer wrong than commit injustice, 
" I can appeal to thee," she says in a written ad- 
dress to her Maker, " how scrupulously I have act- 
ed in matters of equity, and how willingly I have 
injured myself to right others." 

She was strictly conscientious in all the relative 
duties of hfe. She loved and revered her father, 
was assiduously attentive to all his wishes, and has 
been heard to say, " she had rather die than dis- 
please him." She so sympathized with him in the 
anguish of his last sickness, that it occasioned a 
convulsion, from the effects of which she was never 
afterwards entirely free. In the conjugal relation 
she was equally exemplary. She endeared herself 
to Mr. Rowe by the most delicate and engaging 
attention, never thwarted his inclinations, though not 
always consonant with her own ; and when he 
broke out into excesses of anger, endeavored by the 
most soothing endearments, to restore him to rea- 
son and reflection ; and it was her constant study, 
by all the allurements of persuasion, to lead him to 
the practice of the more exalted virtues. In his 
last long and painful illness she attended him with 
indefatigable assiduity ; and performed with strictest 
care all the offices suited to that melancholy situa- 
tion. After he expired, she could scarcely be per- 
suaded to quit his breathless clay, and she honored 
his memory by perpetual widowhood. 



ELIZABETH ROWS. 196 

In domestic life, her behaviour was amiable, con- 
descending and aftable ; she treated her servants 
witii the utmost kindness, caused every thing nutri- 
tious and medicinal to be administered to them in 
sickness, and would sit by their bedside to read to 
them books of piety and devotion. In her friend- 
sliip she was warm, generous and sincere ; happy 
in finding merit to commend, and tender and candid 
in reproving error. It afforded her peculiar pleas- 
ure to render them services ; but her principal en- 
deavor was to instil into their minds the love of vir- 
tue, and direct their attention to their most important 
interests, which could not be essentially promoted 
but by a true regard to the doctrine and practice of 
Christianity. She thus contributed to accelerate 
their progress, by her own precept and example, and 
thereby exhibited the most unquestionable test of 
real friendship. 

Mrs. Rowe exemplified that the most immaculate 
character is not free from the shafts of envy and 
malice ; she felt the slander of malevolence, which 
branded her with the stigma of enthusiasm and hy- 
pocrisy ; but this she sustained through the support 
of conscious innocence, and so far from entertain- 
ing an idea of resentment, considered it as a call 
for the exercise of the godlike virtue of forgiveness. 

Her charity was extensive beyond bounds : to 
want, was a sufficient recommendation for relief, and 
she devoted the greatest part of her income to acts 
of beneficence, taking pleasure in denying herself 
the luxuries and superfluities of life, that she might 
supply those who were destitute of its comforts. 
The first time she accepted a compensation from 
the bookseller for any of her productions, she pre- 



196 BIOGRAPHY OF PIOUS PERSONS. 

sented the whole to a family in distress ; and once, 
not having money enough by her to reheve the exi- 
gences of another, she readily sold a piece of plate 
for that purpose. Besides the sums that she dispos- 
ed of, and the great number of books that she gave 
to the poor, she worked with her own hands to re- 
lieve the necessitous. She was often seen to shed 
tears at the distresses of others ; tears of generous 
compassion, not of feminine weakness, for she had 
too much Christian fortitude to weep over her own 
son-ows. Not satisfied with sending her servants 
to inquire into the state of the sick or necessitous, 
she visited herself the hovels of poverty and conta- 
gion. She educated poor children at her own ex- 
pense, furnished them with clothes. Bibles, and oth- 
er necessary books, instructed them herself in the 
principles of the Christian religion, and expressed 
the solicitude of a parent for their future conduct 
and welfare. This charitable institution comprised 
not only the poor children of Frome, but those of 
neighboring villages, and when some astonishment 
was expressed that a moderate estate should be en- 
abled to perform so much, " I too am surprised," 
said she, " how it should answer all these things, 
and yet I never want money." In this she alluded 
to the goodness of Divine Providence, which she 
ever acknowledged with the greatest degree of pie- 
ty, as interposing in her favor and protection. She 
retired for private prayer three times a day, and was 
most religiously strict in the observance of the 
Lord's day, which she passed entirely in acts of pi- 
ety and devotion. She constantly attended the ad- 
ministration of the Sacrament, for which she had 
the highest veneration ; caused parts of the holy 



ELIZABETH ROWE. 197 

Scriptures to be read at stated times, every day in 
her family, and was particularly affected with the 
New Testament, and those passages of the pro- 
phetical writings, that relate to our blessed Saviour. 
A life so blameless — so exemplary — so devotional, 
brightened her prospects of a future state, and 
smoothed, and softened, and enlightened her jour- 
ney to the tomb. The last work of this excellent 
person, her " Devout Exercises of the heart," or, 
" holy meditations, and addresses to God in the si- 
lent recesses of devotion," display a fervor, an ani- 
mation of piety, that few attain in this life. They 
were sealed up and directed to be delivered to Dr. 
Watts after her decease, and by him were published. 
The letter that accompanied them contains a spirit 
of humble and lively devotion, and we extract from 
it only the two following sentences : " When I 
am sleeping in the dust, should these soliloquies 
kindle a flame of divine love even in the heart of 
tlie lowest and most despised Christian, be the glory 
given to the great spring of grace and benignity. 
Through the blood of thi» Lamb, I hope for an en- 
tire victory over the last enemy ; and that before 
this comes to you I shall have reached the celestial 
heights, and while you are reading these lines, I 
shall be adoring before the throne of God." 



LADY MARY V^ERE. 



Her family was respectable, and she was the 
youngest of 15 children. Her mother died three days 

after her birth, and her father when she was 
1680. only eight years of age. But though she 

was thus early left an orphan, the Al- 
mighty adopted her into his family, and the experi- 
ence she had of his tender care, induced her to 
adopt as her motto, and to write in her books, " God 
will provide." At the age of 19, she was married 
to Mr. William Hobby, and was exemplary in her 
duty to him, and the religious education of her two 
sons. For this she was amply rewarded ; as she 
saw in their happy and trfctnphant deaths, the bles- 
sed effects of that piety she had endeavored to im- 
plant. The youngest died in his 14th year, the 
eldest in his 23d — much admired for their genius, 
and greatly beloved for their piety. 

Her second husband was Sir Horace Vere, baron 
of Tilsbury, a person of honorable descent, of no- 
ble achievements in the field, and of unstained pie- 
ty. He found in her a faithful friend, and a reli- 
gious companion, one who discharged well the 
relative duties of life, and preserved on her spirit a 
continual awe of the Supreme Rciing. She was 
attentive to the appointed ordinances ; careful in her 



LADY MARY VERB. 199 

preparation for the Sacrament, and so reverent in 
her deportuieut in the house of God, that one who 
was in the habit of observing critically, remarked, 
" Lady Vere, by her solemn deportment would make 
one beUeve that there is a God indeed." 

She was no less conscientious respecting private 
worship ; for she did not leave her devotion behind 
her, in the church. Twice a day, the prayers of 
the family were offered on bended knees, the word 
of God read, and his praise sung, and no business 
or company were suffered to delay, or to shorten 
this exercise. On the Sabbath, the sermon preach- 
ed was repeated to her household, the servants were 
called to render an account of what they remem- 
bered, and to unite in a hymn of praise ; and after 
their dismission they resumed the singing of psalms. 
To encourage them in this work of praise, their 
kind mistress would often go and bear her part with 
them, and every night she prayed with her maid- 
servants, thus setting them an example of " all that 
was lovely, and of good report." Twice a day she 
retired to her closet, and Spent several hours in read- 
ing the Scriptures, theological works, and prayer. 
Thus she made great progress in the divine life, 
though she deeply felt and lamented her own unvvor- 
thiness. She not only meditated on death frequently, 
but was strongly desirous to depart, and vfaa one of 
those few Christians to whom it was necessary to 
address the exhortation, " to be content and patient 
though they were not taken up to heaven, so soon 
as they desired." 

Her love to hor Ucdeeraer, and Heavenly Fa- 
ther, showed itself in love to Christians, to ministers, 
and to the poor, and they all ex|)erienccd the marks 



200 BIOGRAPHY OF PIOUS PERSONS. 

of her kindness. She was distinguished by her 
works of charity ; and these were so numerous and 
liberal, that it excited astonishment in others why 
her materials were not exhausted. With unlimited 
generosity she gave to the poor, food, clothing, 
medicine, and accommodations for sickness. But 
her charity was silent and unostentatious, and what 
she gave was known only to herself. When it 
once happened that a poor neighbor died before she 
knew of his illness, she inquired with great anxiety 
respecting his supplies, and added, " I tell you, I 
had rather part with my gown from my back, than 
that the poor should want." In the exercises of 
her beneficence she was simple and humble, ac- 
knowledging that what she gave was not her own 
but the Lord's, feeling her dependence on him, and 
desiring to be found in his righteousness, for her 
own good works in her view were polluted. 

Her goodness was uniform and consistent ; and 
her life was chargeable with none of those inequali- 
ties, which hypocrites are apt to betray. In every 
part of it there was a beautiful symmetry, and its 
crowning part was humility. She placed a high 
value on the exercise of faithful friendship, and re- 
quested her friends to speak freely of whatever they 
saw amiss in her, observing that " others see more 
of us than we do ourselves." Her own imperfec- 
tions were ever present to her, while those around 
her admired her goodness and piety. To the mean- 
est person who approached her, she was afiable and 
courteous, and when her domestics had performed 
any duty assigned them, would be particular in 
thanking them ; for on her tongue was the law of 
kindne^is. 



LADY MARY VERE. 201 

About a year before her death she was seized 
with an alarming fainting fit, in which she continued 
half an hour without apparent life or motion ; but 
as soon as she came to herself, she exclaimed joy- 
fully, " I know that my Redeemer liveth ; I know 
whom I have believed." Her serene, and bright 
day, had at length a happy close. In her last sick- 
ness her pains were strong, but the constancy of 
her faith was still stronger ; no murmur, or expres- 
sion of impatience, dropped from her lips, but she 
was particular in justifying God in all his dispensa- 
tions, and in her most distressing agonies would 
speak gratefully of his mercies. The last words 
which she was heard to utter were, " How shall I 
do to be thankful 1 — How shall I do to praise my 
God 1" She closed this life with the exercise of 
that praise which is to be the employment of ano- 
ther, and entered into rest, on the Sabbath day, De- 
cember 25th, 1761, at the great age of 90 years. 
With long life did God satisfy her, and grant her his 
salvation. 



17 



COL. JAMES GARDIXER. 



James Gardiner was bom at a small town in 
Linlithgowshire (Scotland) on the 10th of Janua- 
ry, 1688. ^Miilea child he met with 
1688. many bereavements ; his father died,, 
during the long campaign in Germany ; 
his uncle was slain in the battle at Steinkirk, and 
his eldest brother fell at the siege of Namur, on the 
day that completed his 16th year. His mother, who- 
was a pattern of piety and virtue, endured these af- 
flictions with the spirit of a Christian, and labored 
to promote the religious and literary education oF 
the subject of this sketch. He was placed at the 
school of Linlithgow, where he distinguished him- 
self by proficiency in study, especially in the lan- 
guages. The pious instructions of his mother had 
no effect upon his volatile mind, and her tender re- 
monstrances were ineffectual to prevent his making 
choice of a military life ; for so great was his ardor 
in the profession of arms that he fought three duels 
before he attained the stature of a man ; and in one 
of them, when he was but eight years old, received 
a deep wound in the face, the scar of w hich he car- 
ried with him to the gruve. He served first as a ca- 
det, and at the age of 14 bore an ensign's commis- 
sion in a Scotch regiment engaged in the Dutch ser- 
vice. 



COL. JAMES GARDINER. 203 

Tn the memorable battle of Ramillies, diirinj!; the 
reifjn of Queen Anne, he performed many feats of 
valor, in the capacity of ensign, and while he was 
engaged in rallying his men to a desperate attack on 
the French, who were posted in the church yard of 
Ramillies, and while the most blasphemous oaths 
trembled on his tongue, he received a bullet in the 
mouth which passed out through his neck, and in a 
state of racking anguish lay on the field of battle the 
whole night, covered with his own blood, and sur- 
rounded by the dying. But neither the tortures of a 
wound, inflamed by neglect and improper treatment, 
nor the depression of sickness, nor yet the miracle of 
his deliverance, impressed his heart or awakened it to 
reflection. At his recovery he again retunied to 
his vices, and plunged into every course of shame- 
less dissipation. Yet in this life of licentiousness 
he realized no happiness, and when his gay friends 
were once congratulating him on his successes and 
felicity, he happened to cast his eye upon a dog that 
entered the room, and could not forbear groaning 
inwardly, and wishing " Oh, that I were that dog /" 

In this course he continued till past the 30th year 
of his age, when he was reclaimed by an almost mi- 
raculous interposition of divine power. In the 
midst of horrible criminality, his mind became so 
suddenly and deeply impressed, that he thought he 
saw before his eyes, a representation of the crucified 
Saviotir, and heard his voice expostulating with him. 
The deep amazement of his soul was succeeded by 
several days and nights of extreme horror, till at 
length, as if in answer to agonizing cries and pray- 
ers, the day-spring of salvation dawned from on 
high. An entire change was wrought in his views, 



204 BIOGRAPHY OF PIOUS PERSONS. 

affections, and propensities, and he who was once 
Wind through the enmity of sin, saw clearly. This 
perceptible alteration of his behaviour, soon exci- 
ted the raillery and ridicule of his former compan- 
ions, but he sustained it with calmness, and told 
them of his unalterable determination to serve the 
Lord. 

At his return from Paris to London, knowing that 
he must encounter the ridicule of those with whom 
he had once associated in sin, he requested that he 
might meet them on a social party at the house of a 
friend. During dinner he was the object of their 
sharpest witticisms, to which he made little reply ; 
but when the cloth was removed, he entreated their 
hearing, while he recounted the cause of his visible 
alteration, the thorough change of his principles and 
affections, and the peace and serenity which he en- 
joyed, to which he was before a stranger. They 
listened to this manly and rational defence with the 
deepest astonishment, and the master of the house, 
rising, said — " Come, let us call another cause. We 
thought this man mad, and he is in good earnest 
proving that we are so." When his friends perceiv- 
ed him still cheerful and conversible, they no longer 
cavilled at his opinions, but seemed to wish to share 
his serenity, and to look upon him as a superior be- 
ing. 

None ever knew better how to blend the grace- 
ful and amiable discharge of the duties of life, with 
the strict devotion of a Christian. He always rose 
so early, as to be able to devote two hours to pray- 
er, meditation and praise, in which he acquired an 
uncommon fervency, and realized great delight. If, 
during the bustle of a camp life, he was obliged to 



COL. JAMES OAROIN£R. 205 

be at the head of his regiment earlier than usual, 
he would begin his devotions by one or two o'clock, 
that nothing might intrench upon his specified holy 
time. When he received a letter from a friend, it 
was his practice to retire and pray for him, and when 
he had the care of a family, prayer and praise were 
continually offered, morning and evening, and he 
engaged a clergyman to reside there and officiate in 
his absence, and serve as tutor to his children. 

His letters are written in the most fervent strain 
of piety ; " I am daily offering up my prayers," he 
adds in one of them, " for tliis fcinl'iil land of ours, 
over which the judgments of Go<i seem to be gath- 
ering ; and my strength is sometinnes so exhausted 
with those strong cries and tears which I pour out 
before my God, that I am haidly able to stand when 
I rise from my knees." 

The life of this extraordinary man was termina- 
ted at the battle of Preston Pans, Sept. 21st, 1745, 
where he fell gallantly fighting at the head of his 
regiment. He received in the beginning of the ac- 
tion a bullet in the breast, and a shot in the thigh, 
which he disregarded, and continued animating his 
men by his voice and example, until a highlander, 
with a scythe, almost severed his right arm from his 
body, and dragged him from his horse, when anoth- 
er highlander with a Lochaber axe gave him his 
mortal wound. Elevating the arm that was left he 
gave signal for his men to retreat, and as he lay ex- 
piring in blood said feebly to a chief of the opposite 
party, " you are fighting for an earthly crown, I go 
to receive an heavenly one." 
17* 



REV. JONATHAN EDWARDS. 



Jonathan Edwards was born at East Wind- 
sor, Connecticut, on the 5th of October, 
1703. 1703. He was the only brother of ten 
sisters, and the only son of the Rev. Tim- 
othy Edwards, inhiister of East Windsor, who 
labored as a preacher more than fifty-nine years, 
and died at the age of ninety, universally esteemed, 
beloved and venerated. This son, in the year 
1716, entered a student at Yale College, and soon 
became distinguished by proficiency in knowledge 
and serious deportment. In the second year of his 
attendance, while only thirteen, he read Locke's 
Essay on the Human tJnderstanding, with so much 
eagerness and fixed attention, that it had a powerful 
influence upon his mind, and seemed to awaken 
and invigorate those logical and metaphysical pow- 
ers, for which he was afterwards so greatly eminent. 
Taking that book into his hand, not long before his 
death, he said to some select friends, who surround- 
ed him, that in his boyhood at college, he had more 
satisfaction and pleasure in studying it, than the 
most greedy miser in gathering handfuls of gold 
and silver from a newly discovered treasure. 

In his early years an uncommon genius began to 
discover itself ; for Nature had formed him for in- 



REV. JONATHAN EDWARDS. 207 

tense thought, and deep penetration; and though 
he made proficiency in all the arts and sciences 
then taught, yet moral philosophy and divinity were 
his favorite studies. When only 16, he received 
the honors of Yale College, and continued there 
two years after, studying and preparing for the work 
of the ministry. After passing the pre-requisite 
trials, he was licensed as a candidate, and preached 
to a society in New York for eight months, to uni- 
versal acceptance. 

While here he contracted a strong religious 
friendship with an aged widow lady where he board- 
ed, and with her son. " My heart was knit in af- 
fection to them," he writes more than twenty years 
afterwards, " and I could not bear the thoughts of 
other companions, than those who were disciples of 
the blessed Jesus. When I came from New York 
I had a most bitter parting with Madam Smith and 
her son. My heart seemed to sink within me, at 
leaving the family and city where I had enjoyed so 
many sweet and pleasant days ; and as the vessel 
sailed away, I kept sight of the city as long as I 
could ; and when it could no longer be seen, it 
would affect me much to look that way with a kind 
of melancholy, mixed with sweetness." He was 
earnestly solicited to settle at New York, but think- 
ing that the society where he preached was too 
small to support the expense of a minister, and that 
a longer term of study was requisite for his youth, 
as he was then but 19, he retired to his father's 
house, and devoted the summer to close and dili- 
gent study. 

Here his diary notes every change of his heart, 
as well as of God's dealings with him, and the pious 



208 BIOGRAPHY OF PIOUS PERSONS. 

resolutions formed for the direction of his conduct, 
deserve the notice and remembrfince of every seri- 
ous person. They are seventy in number, and a 
few only are transcribed, as the limits of this sketch 
will not allow the admission of the whole. 

" Resolved, Never to lose one moment of time ; 
but improve it the most profitable way 1 can. • 

" Never to do anything that I should be afraid to 
do, if it were the last moment of my life. 

"To think much on all occasions of my owa 
dying, and of the common circumstances that at- 
tend death. 

" To be endeavoring to find out fit objects for 
charity and liberality. 

" Never to do anything out of revenge. 

" Never to suffer the least emotions of anger to 
irrational beings. 

" To live at all times as I think is best in my 
devout frames, and when I have the clearest views 
of the gospel, and another world. 

" Never to speak anything in nan-ation but sim- 
ple truth. 

" To inquire every night as I am going (o bed, 
wherein I have been negligent, what sin I have 
committed, and wherein I have denied myself; also 
at the end of every week, month and year. 

" To maintain the strictest temperance in diet. 

" Never to speak anything that is ridiculous, or 
matter of laughter, on the liOrd's day. 

" Never to allow the least measure of fretting 
uneasiness, at my father or mother. Resolved, to 
suffer no effects of it, so much as in the least alter- 
ation of speech, or motion of the eye : and to be 



REV. JONATHAN EDWARDS. 209 

especially careful, with respect to any of the family. 

" To endeavor to my utmost to deny whatever is 
not agreeable to a good and universally sweet, and 
benevolent, quiet, peaceable, contented, easy, com- 
passionate, generous, humble, meek, modest, sub- 
missive, obliging, diligent, industrious, charitable, 
even, patient, moderate, forgiving, sincere temper ; 
and to examine strictly every week whether I have 
done so. 

" Resolved, all my life long, with the greatest 
openness of which I am capable, to declare my 
ways to God, and lay open my soul to him ; all my 
sins, temptations, difficulties, sorrows, fears, hopes, 
desires, every thing and every circumstance." 

This was the beginning of a life, useful, emi- 
nent and holy. This was the youth who was after- 
wards to be one of the greatest divines, and most 
acute logicians, that America ever produced ; of 
whom experienced ministers were to say, " that he 
was, under heaven, their oracle ;" and whose writ- 
ings were to gain him the applause and admiration 
of America, Great Britain, Holland and Germany. 
He began his life with watchfulness, pious resolu- 
tions, and prayers : is this the usual course and 
practice of the youth of the present day ? Let 
them know that he arrived at eminence by such 
methods ; let them follow his steps, and expect the 
blessing of Godg^ To-day, if they will hear the 
voice, that from Ine life and writings of a departed 
saint speaks unto them, let them not harden their 
hearts, but turn unto Him, who, if sought early, 
will be found, and if called upon humbly and ear- 
nestly, will answer. 



210 BIOGRAPHY OF PIOUS PERSONS. 

At the age of twenty, he was nominated tutor of 
Yale College, where he continued two years, and 
then accepted an invitation to settle at Northampton, 
as colleague pastor with his grandfather Stoddard, 
who was then Uving at an advanced age. It is 
rather a singular coincidence, that he was twenty- 
three years and four months old when ordained at 
Northampton, and continued tViere exactly twenty- 
three years and four months. The summer after his 
settlement he was married to Miss Sarah Pierpont, 
daughter of the Rev. James Pierpont, the worthy 
and respected minister of New Haven. She was 
happily calculated to advance his interest, and in- 
crease his enjoyment, and this union was a source 
of much felicity to both. 

And now the lustre of his piety began to diffuse 
itself over a wider sphere, and to vivify many cold 
and inattentive hearts. As a preacher, his excellence 
was acknowledged even by those who received not 
his doctrine. He took great pains in preparing his 
sermons, his knowledge of the human heart sug- 
gested many affecting truths, and his delivery of 
them was easy, methodical, and deeply solemn. 
Towards the close of his life, he was little confined 
to his notes, and used to advise young preachers, to 
commit their sermons to memory, and gradually 
discontinue the use of notes, that they might address 
with more freedom and better effect the hearts of 
their audience. 

In his prayers, he had an undissembled and almost 
inimitable spirit of devotion, and seemed indeed to 
draw nigh to the throne of a father. This service,, 
though delightful to him, he did not protract to great 
length, observing that this was an error often hurtful 



REV. JONATHAN CDWARDS. 211 

to public and social prayer, and calculated more to 
dampen than to promote true devotion. He cate- 
chised the children in public every Sabbath, often 
called them with the youth to his own house, that he 
might pray and converse religiously with them, and 
propose questions to some of them in writing, which 
they were to answer after a suitable time, thus ex- 
citing them to the knowledge of the scriptures. Ma- 
ny fruits of his labors were visible among his people, 
and in the years 1734 and 41, were two such general 
seasons of awakening, as to excite universal attention 
in surrounding places. Of the first, which was the 
most remarkable, he published an account entitled, 
•*'A faithful Narrative of the surprising work of 
God, in the conversion of many hundred souls in 
Northampton ;" this was reprinted in Germany, 
England and America. 

His benevolent disposition discovered itself by 
bis uncommon Uberality to the poor and distressed. 
His donations were generally made privately, or 
with strict commands that none should mention the 
name of the giver ; though since his death such a 
number of instances have been discovered as con- 
stitute him one of the greatest charitable examples 
of our age, and doubtless many — many will continue 
unknown until the resurrection of the just. Though 
he was not in affluent circumstances, and was bur- 
dened with the maintenance of a numerous family, 
he imparted largely and willingly, but gave not has 
alms to be seen or applauded by men. 

He did not entangle himself with the affairs of 
this life, and had no desire to lay up perishable 
riches for himself or his children. He observed the 
strictest integrity in all his dealings, and displayed 



212 BIOGRAPHY OP PIOUS PERSONS. 

the most sacred regard to truth, not only in promises, 
but in the simplest narration. He was cautious in 
the choice of acquaintance, unreserved and faithful 
in friendship, and inviolable in preserving secrets 
entrusted to him. His conversation was profitable 
and mstructive, but he never spent his time in study- 
ing the art of trifling. In promiscuous company, 
unless some important subject of discourse was 
agitated, he spoke little, for he was not ambitious of 
being idly entertaining, and thought his chief excel- 
lence did not consist in a talent for conversation. 
" As far as I am able to judge," he writes, " of what 
talents I have, for benefiting my fellow creatures by 
words, I think I can write better than I can speak." 
In the relative duties of hfe, as a son and brother, 

«gt a husband and father, he was faithful and affectionate. 

^ He maintained an uniform government of his family, 
and so established parental authority, as to obtain 
cheerful obedience, reverence and affection. He 
was careful to instruct them in the principles of 
religion, to restrain them from vain and unreasonable 
amusements, and to teach them reverently to obsen'e 
the Sabbath. As he believed its exercises began at 
sunset the evening before, he was careful that his 
household should finish all their secular business, 
and be convened at that time, when he examined his 
children in their rehgious studies, took particular 
care that they understood what they repeated, and 
then would sing a psalm, and attend prayers, as an 
introductory exercise to the Lord's day. 

He was remarkable for rising early, and required 
his family to follow his example, and to attend 
customary devotions ere they entered upon worldly 
business. Before prayers a portion of Scripture 



REV. JONATHAN EDWARDS. 213 

was read, usually by candle light in the winter, upon 
which he questioned his children according to their 
age and capacity, explaining, illustrating and enfor- 
cing as he saw occasion. He frequently conversed 
with his children separately in his study, on their 
eternal concerns, giving them warning, exhortation 
or direction, as their state seemed to require. In 
his study, also, he was accustomed to converse with 
his amiable and pious consort, on the affairs of 
religion, and constantly prayed with her there, once 
a day, beside family and private devotion. 

In his manner of life, study, diet and recreation, 
he was strictly methodical. He was very temperate 
in eating and drinking, that the powers of the mind 
might be unburdened and active. His time of risinat , 
was four in the morning ; his daily time of study >*» 
thirteen hours ; his recreation, riding on hoiseliack 
after dinner, two or three miles, when he \voul<n4e 
dismount and walk in some retired grove or l"ore8t,flF 
carrying with him a pen, to note the thought» Mat 
arose in his mind. He was punctual and frequent 
in the exercise of private devotion, and often kept 
days of fasting, prayer, and devout meditation. In 
youth, he recorded a resolution in his diary, to pray 
secretly more than twice a day, and it was known 
that he was much on his knees, engaged in that 
most solemn service. Constant and devout com- 
munion with God in these retired hours, gave to his 
countenance and deportment, an habitual serious- 
ness, and calm solemnity, as the face of Moses was 
observed to shine after his high communion in the 
mount. 

The exercises of his mind, in the different stages 
of conversion, were remarkable. His first was in 
18 



214 BIOGRAPHY OF PIOUS PERSONS. 

childhood, at the time of an awakening in his 
father's congregation ; when he was for many months 
religiously concerned, careful in serious duties, and 
in the habit of praying secretly five times a day. 
Yet this he considered not genuine, because its im- 
pressions passed away, and were not renewed until 
hehada severe fitof sickness at college. This danger 
awakened him to self-accusation, terror and repen- 
tance, and though he experienced more than most 
Christians do, and after his recovery was serious 
and active in religion, he viewed that not as the 
time of his saving change, but as a step in the grad- 
ual progress to a happier time, when to use his own 
eloquent description, " there came into his mind 
^weet sense of the glorious majesty and grace of 
^^^oH, as it were in conjunction ; majesty and meek- 
■ ^ ness joined together ; a sweet, and a gentle, and an 
'*' holy majesty ; a majestic meekness, an awful 
^vveohiess, a high, and a great and holy gentleness." 
]^ objections to the sovereignty of God were 
conqBered, his affections sublimated, and even a new 
^ hue given to the face of Nature. " A. calm, sweet 
cast, an appearance of divine glory, an excellency, 
wisdom, purity and love, seemed to shine in every 
thing, in the sun, moon and stars ; in the clouds 
and blue sky ; in the grass, flowers and trees ; in 
the water, and in all nature." Even his natural 
tastes and antipathies seemed to be transformed, he 
had from infancy been much terrified at thunder, and 
the sight of a rising cloud would fill him with unspeak- 
able dread. But then, and ever afterwards, a thun- 
der storm was to him no source of uneasiness ; 
" I rejoiced," said he, " at its appearance, fixed 
myself so as to view the clouds, to see the light- 



/ 



REV. JONATHAN EDWARDS. 215 

nings play, and to hear the majestic and awful 
voice of God's thunder, which led me to sweet con- 
templations, and as I viewed, it always seemed 
natural to me to sing or chant forth my meditations ; 
to utter my thoughts in soliloquies, and with a sing- 
ing voice." A change so great influenced him to 
the close of life ; a religion whose principle was 
love seemed to actuate him; his heait was alive 
and susceptible to every pious emotion, and in his 
line of duty, and sphere of action, few have kept 
themselves so pure and unspotted from the world. 
His activity, usefulness, and sincere piety, gained 
the love and esteem of his people, and in their expres- 
sions of attachment they were uncommonly fre- 
quent and fervent. Those who visited Northam|>» 
ton, would have pronounced it impossible for hinn t(^ 
have been rejected or opposed by his parishioners j 
yet in this we have a striking lesson of the uiuta- 
bihty of man, and the afiairs of man. It had been 
maintained by his predecessor, that unconverted 
persons should be admitted to the ordinance of 
the Lord's Supper, though they make no pretensions 
to real holiness. Upon this principle, a short cove- 
nant was framed, and many admitted to the church 
without prerequisite qualifications. Many years 
after Mr. Edwards' settlement, he was led candidly 
to examine this doctrine, and to preceive its dan- 
gerous tendency. But the avowal of his sentiments, 
gave great offence ; he was forbidden to preach on 
the subject, and what he pubhshed was neglected or 
misconstrued. Those who were once ready to 
" pluck out their eyes and give to him," clamoured 
for his dismissal, rejected all terms of accommoda- 
tion, and when the summoned ecclesiastical council 



<C-r 



216 BIOGRAPHY OF PIOUS PERSONS. 

decreed that it was expedient for him to depart if 
they persisted in desiring it, zealously voted for his 
dismission, by a majority of two hundred and twenty. 

A part, who adhered to him during all his calami- 
ties, requested that he would still continue their pas- 
tor, and offered to support him ; but he determined 
not to perpetuate division, among those whom he 
had loved as children, and chose rather to suffer 
poverty with a large and helpless family around him. 

He bade them farewell in a most solemn and 
pathetic discourse, and while he continued there, 
occasionally suppUed the pulpit, when no other min- 
ister could be procured, until great uneasiness was 
manifested, and the whole town gathering together, 
voted that he should preach to them no more. 
This opposition and severe treatment was a great 
trial to so tender and susceptible a heart ; he felt 
very deeply this change in the conduct of those 
who had once manifested so much esteem and 
love, for whose welfare he had studied and labored, 
for whom he had poured out innumerable fervent 
prayers ; and who were dearer to him than any 
people under heaven. With feeling he might 
adopt the words of the Psalmist, " It was not an 
enemy that reproached me, then I could have borne 
it ; neither was it he that hated me that did mag- 
nify himself against me; but it was thou mine 
equal, my guide, and my acquaintance ; we took 
sweet counsel together, and walked unto the house 
of God in company." 

But though he felt the pang of ingratitude keenly, 
as a man, he suffered it meekly, as a Christian. 
His calm sedateness, and deep humility amidst 
violent opposition and injurious treatment; his res- 
olution and steady conduct throughout the whole 



REV. JONATHAN EDWARDS. 217 

of that dark and terrible storm, astonished his ene- 
mies, and furnished a new source of admiration to 
those who had been in Uie habit of esteeming and 
loving this excellent man. The God to whom he 
had prayed for strength and direction, evidently 
supported him, and provided for his necessities, when 
earthly friends had forsaken him. 

A short time after this sorrowful and surprising 
transaction, he was appointed to succeed the Rev. 
Mr. Sergeant, in his mission at Stockbridge, about 
sixty miles from Northampton, where he and his 
family were comfortably accommodated, and leisure 
given him to pursue his beloved studies. Here he 
made swifter advances in knowledge, and added 
more to his manuscripts than he had ever done in 
the same term of time before, and often acknow- 
ledged the tender care of God in granting him 
opportunity to finish some favorite literary \vorks» 
and in providing him such a peaceful retreat, ren- 
dered doubly sweet by the preceding tempest. 

His great work on the " Freedom of the Will," 
was composed here, which by good judges is con- 
sidered one of the greatest efforts of Ae human 
mind that appeared in that century. Its judgment, 
penetration, and accuracy of thought, ranks the 
author among the most exalted geniuses of his age. 
His different publications were between twenty and 
thirty, beside several works left unfinished at the 
time of his death, and ],400 miscellaneous manu- 
scripts. When we look at the number of his per- 
formances, and consider the delicacy of his health, 
and the extent of his professional engagements, we 
are led to admire his strict improvement of time, 
and diligence in study, and are astonished that even 
18* 



218 BIOGRAPHY OF PIOUS PERSONS. 

with these he could have accomplished so much. 

In this retirement, so congenial to his inclinations, 
and favorable to his pursuits, he was interrupted by 
an invitation from Princeton, New Jersey, to accept 
of the government of their college, rendered vacant 
by the death of his son-in-law. President Burr. Far 
from being elated at any proposal of dignity or 
emolument, he signified his desire rather to remain 
in a retired situation, and devote himself to study, 
than to accept an office for which his great humility 
led him to think himself unqualified. But they per- 
sisting in their request, he submitted the question to 
a counsel of ministers, who after candid examina- 
tion, determined it to be his duty to accept of the 
offered Presidency. He received their judgment 
with a flood of tears, so dear was that little spot of 
retirement, so unambitious was he of worldly dig- 
nity, and so true is it that, to minds like his, ' before 
honoris humility.' In the winter of 1768, he began 
his journey, leaving his family to follow in the 
spring, and purposing to reside till their arrival with 
his daughter, the widow of the late President Burr. 

His acceptance of the appointment gave great 
satisfaction to the college and inhabitants of Prince- 
ton, his friends in Scotland and England expressed 
their warmest congratulations ; and he himself said, 
that though he had undertaken the office with much 
concern and fear, he had received such visible sup- 
ports from God, as to incline him to believe that 
he was in the way of his duty. He preached in 
the college hall every Sabbath, to the edification 
of many hearers ; and as President, gave out 
questions in divinity to the senior class, to be an- 
swered before him, after a suitable time to digest 



REV. JONATHAN EDWARDS. 219 

and write their thoughts. They found so much 
pleasure in the exercise, and so much light and 
instruction from his comments, that they spoke of 
it with a mixture of astonishment and delight. 

When President Edwards arrived at Princeton, 
he found the small pox prevailed among the inhabi- 
tants ; and by the advice of his physician, and con- 
sent of the corporation of college, was inoculated 
a few weeks after he came among them. The 
disease appeared to terminate favorably ; but a sec- 
ondary fever seized him, which raged in defiance of 
all medicine, until it put a period to his life, on the 
22d of March, 1753, in the 66th year of his age, 
just two months after he had parted from his belov- 
ed family at Stockbridge, whom God had ordained 
should see his face no more. When he perceived 
his disease would prove mortal, he said to his 
daughter who attended him, " My dear Lucy, it 
seems to me to be the will of God, that I should short- 
ly leave you, therefore give my kindest love to my 
dear wife, and tell her that the uncommon union 
that has so long subsisted between us, has been of 
such a nature as I trust is spiritual, and therefore 
will continue forever, and I hope she will be sup- 
ported under so great a trial, and submit cheerfully 
to the will of God. And as to my children, you 
are now likely to be left fatherless, which I hope 
will be an inducement to you all to seek a father 
who will never fail you. And as to my funeral, I 
would have it without ostentation, like Mr. Burr's, 
and any additional sum of money, that might be 
expected to be laid out that way, I would have dis- 
posed of in charitable uses." 

As he breathed his last, some persons who sur- 



220 BIOGRAPHY OF PIOUS PERSONS. 

rounded his bed were lamenting his death, as a great 
judgment on the college, and bearing a dark aspect 
on tlie interests of religion in general, when to 
their great surprise, he whom they supposed to be 
senseless, and lamented as dead, spoke to them 
distinctly — " Trust in God, and ye need not fear." 
These were his last words ; and surely they are 
memorable ; for to those Eu-ound him they appeared 
as if uttered from the dead. Thus fell a great and 
a good man, of whom to record the truth is his best 
praise. 

The physician who constantly attended him, has 
the following words in a letter to his widowed con- 
sort. " Never did any man more clearly evince the 
sincerity of his professions, by one continued, calm, 
cheerful resignation, and patient submission to the 
divine will, through every stage of his disease, than 
he. Not so much as one discontented expression, 
or the least appearance of murmuring, throughout 
the whole. And never did any person expire with 
more perfect freedom from pain : not so much as 
one distorted hair, but in the most proper sense 
of the words, he readily /e/i asleefJ" 



DR. SAMUEL JOHNSON. 



Samuel Johnson, a literary character of the 
highest rank, was born at Litchfield, (Eng.) Sep- 
tember 7, 1709. His father was a repu- 
1709. table bookseller ; his mother a woman of 
great piety and understanding, who early 
instilled the principles of religion into his mind. 
He exhibited strong marks of genius in the free 
school at Litchfield, where he received the chief part 
of his education, and some of his exercises which 
were accidentally preserved, justify the expectations 
which determined a father, not opulent, to train him 
in the paths of literature. After passing a part of 
his youth, at home, in voluntary and desultory 
study, he entered as a commoner at Oxford, in his 
19th year. Oppressed by pecuniary difficulties, he 
was compelled to make a short, and an interrupted 
residence at the university, and in the autumn of 
1731, gave it up as impracticable, after having 
struggled as long as possible with severe indigence, 
and the insolvency of his father. 

After he quitted the university, he remained at 
Litchfield, till the death of his father, devoting his 
time to literary improvements. At the age of 26, 
he married Elizabeth Porter, a widow of Birming- 
ham, and fitted up a house in Eclial, near Litchfield, 



222 BIOGKAPIIV OF PIOL^S PERSONS. 

where he undertook to keep a school, but was oblig- 
ed to resign the employment for want of encourage- 
ment. Two years after, he made his first expedi- 
tion to London, to try the fortune of his talents in 
that great field of exertion. He soon found him- 
self reduced to the necessity of writing for a sub- 
sistence, and his principal employment for several 
years, was that of writing for the editor of the Gen- 
tleman's Magazine. He felt keenly the bitterness 
of dependance, and the vexations of authorship, 
and for a long time supported himself upon the 
scanty pittance of four pence half penny a day ! 
How little is sufficient to subsist the animal part of 
man ! — and how often are genius and talents over- 
looked and forgotten ! 

Soon after he published a tragedy, and a poem in 
imitation of Juvenal's third satire ; and in 1737, be- 
gan an edition of Shakespeare, and published tho 
plan of his English Dictionary. To enable him to 
complete this last stupendous work, be hired a house, 
fitted up a large upper room in the form of a count- 
ing house, and employed six amanuenses. On the 
20th of March, 1750, he pubhshed the first paper of 
his " Rambler," which he continued twice a week, 
without interruption, for two years. In this very 
excellent work, he proceeded almost without assist- 
ance ; only five papers in the whole having been 
supplied by other writers. With what devout and 
conscientious sentiments he undertook this paper, 
is evidenced by the following solemn address to the 
Divine Being, which he composed and solemnly of- 
fered up at its commencement. 

" Almighty God ! the giver of all good things ; 
without whose help all labor is ineffectual, and with- 



DR. SAMUKL JOHNSON. 223 

out whose grace all wisdom is folly ; grant, I be- 
seech thee, that in this undertaking, thine Holy 
Spirit may not be withheld from me, but that I may 
promote thy glory, and the salvation of myself and 
others ; grant this, O Lord, for the sake of thy son 
Jesus Christ. Amen." 

The concluding paragraph of his farewell paper 
in the Rambler, appears to have been written under 
a persuasion that the Deity had been propitious to 
his labor, and that the solemn address which he 
had presented before him, on his first engaging in 
it, had been heard and accepted. '' The essays 
professedly serious, if I have been able to execute 
my own intentions, will be found exactly conforma- 
ble to the precepts of Christianity, without any ac- 
commodation to the licentiousness and levity of the 
present age. I therefore look back on this part of 
my work with pleasure, which no praise of man 
shall diminish or augment. I shall never envy the 
honors which wit and learning obtain in any other 
cause, if I can be numbered among the writers who 
have given ardor to virtue, and confidence to truth. 

" Celestial Powers ! that piety regard ; 
From you my labors wait their last reward." 

Soon after the publication of the Rambler, John- 
son's wife died. This event afiected him in the 
deepest manner; and the morbid melancholy to 
which he was constitutionally subject, acquired addi- 
tional force. In his volume of " Prayers and Med- 
itations," we find very remarkable evidence that his 
strong afiection for her never ceased, even after her 
death. 



224 BIOGRAPHY OF PIOUS PERSONS. 

In May, 1755, he completed and published his 
Dictionary, having proceeded in this astonishing 
work, with little assistance from the learned, and no 
patronage from the great ; and erected for posterity 
a durable monument of the profundity of his know- 
ledge, and versatility of his genius. 

Notwithstanding this great man's various and ex- 
cellent publications, he continued in a state of pov- 
erty, until the royal bounty, in 1762, raised him 
above the reach of want, by a pension of 300/. a 
year, given expressly as a reward for the merit and 
moral tendency of his writings. Two years after, 
he instituted, and ever assisted to support, " The 
Literary Club," which was a stated meeting of sev- 
eral men of high intellectual powers. His superior 
talents made his company highly acceptable, to eve- 
ry rank of the witty, the elegant, and the wise. His 
peculiarities were lost and forgotten in the admira- 
tion of his understanding, while his virtues were re- 
garded with veneration, and his opinions copied with 
submission. The same energy of mind which was 
displayed in his literary productions exhibited itself 
in his conversation, which was various, striking and 
instructive. His reputation began to extend, and 
his fame to be established ; and the universities of 
Dublin and Oxford sent him an honorary degree of 
Doctor of Laws. At different periods he contin- 
ued to pubhsh works of various descriptions, but 
agreeing in their ultimate tendency to diffuse know- 
ledge, morality and religion. His last production of 
consequence was " The Lives of the Poets," of 
which he says in a previous memorandum, " written, 
I hope, in such a manner as may tend to the promo- 
tion of piety." 



DR. SAMUEL JOHNSON. 225 

His charity to the poor was constant and exten- 
sive, and he performed many acts of the most disin- 
terested benevolence. In his dealings, he was 
strictly just and conscientious, and trembled at the 
thought of defrauding another, even in the most tri- 
fling instance. Hearing, near the close of his life, 
that his father had died indebted lo a certain book- 
seller for the sum of 30 pounds, he diligently 
sought out his descendant, and left him in his will 
200 pounds, that injustice might not rest upon the 
memory of his father. In his attention to veracity, 
even in the most trivial assertion, " he was," says an 
intimate acquaintance, " without equal or example." 
From the slightest to the most solemn narration, he 
was strict even to severity, and scorned to embel- 
lish a story with the least fictitious circumstance. 
" A story," he would say, " should be a specimen of 
hfe and manners ; if the surrounding circumstances 
are false, it is no longer a representation of reality, 
and no more a subject of attention." 

His piety was exemplary and edifying ; he was 
punctiliously exact to perform every public duty en- 
joined by the church, and his spirit of devotion had 
an energy that atfected all who ever heard him pray in 
private. The coldest and most languid hearers of 
the word felt themselves anirijatcd by his manner of 
reading the holy scriptures, and to pray by his sick 
bed required great strength and firmness of mind, 
so vehement were his manners and his tones of voice 
so pathetic. He was a warm and able advocate for 
the truth of the Christian rehgion, and expressed his 
aversion to infidelity at all times without the smallest 
reserve ; for no honest man, he would say, can be 
19 



226 BIOGRAPHY OF PIOUS PERSONS. 

a deist, after a fair examination of the proofs of 
Christianity. 

In his personal appearance, he was neither beau- 
tiful or agreeable, yet his countenance when com- 
posed was contemplative and awful. It was capa- 
ble of great expression, both in respect to intelli- 
gence and mildness, particularly when in the glow 
of conversation, or under the influence of grateful 
feelings ; for his soul was susceptible of gratitude, 
and of every kind emotion. His mind was so com- 
prehensive, that no language but his own could have 
translated its contents ; and so ponderous was that 
language, that sentiments less solid, or less lofty, 
would have been encumbered, not adorned by it. 

This great and excellent man frequently felt the 
indispositions and pains annexed to a life of labori- 
ous study, and in the summer of 1783, was attack- 
ed, during the night, with a paralytic stroke, which 
deprived hirn of the powers of speech. Finding 
himself unable to articulate a syllable, he wrote thus 
to a neighboring confidential friend. — " Dear Sir, 
it hath pleased Alnjighty God, this morning to de- 
prive me of the power of speech ; and as I do not 
know but it might be his further good pleasure to 
deprive me soon of my senses, I request you will, 
ou the receipt of this note, come to me, and act for 
me, as the exigencies of my case may require." 

Among the legacies of his last will and testament, 
he left the sum of 70 pounds a year, to his faithful 
negro man servant, who was often the subject of 
his prayers, and of his dying exhortations. From 
this severe shock he seemed in a few months al- 
most entirely to recover, but in the conclusion of the 
yeaf 1784, he was seized with the dropsy in such a 



DR. SAMUEL JOHNSON. 227 

manner as to leave his friends little hope of his re- 
covery. At times he labored under a mental depres- 
sion and agitation, and at intervals possessed his 
usual flow of spirits, and composure of soul. He 
insisted that his physician should tell him candidly 
of his situation, and when he answered that " from 
the complication of his disorders, and his advanced 
state of life, there could be little hope, except from 
miracles," he listened with firmness, thanked him, 
and said he would endeavor to compose himself (or 
the approaching scene. To each of his three phy- 
sicians he gave a copy of his " Lives of the Poets," 
as a testimony of affectionate remembrance, and 
then, realizing the fallacy of medicine to one so near 
the grave, persisted in taking no more op'stes, " for 
I have prayed," said he, " that I may resign my soul 
to God unclouded." 

For some time before his death he received the 
sacrament two or three times in each week, with 
great humility and solemnity. An intimate friend 
one day entered his room, just after this affecting 
ceremony : >' Oh ! my Iriend," exclaimed he, " I 
have owed you many obligations through my life, 
but they will all be more than amply repaid by your 
taking this most important advice ; be a good Chris- 
tian." His fears were all calmed and absorbed by the 
prevalence of his faith, and his trust in the merits 
and propitiation of Jesus Christ ; and to those about 
him he often dwelt upon the necessitj of faith in 
that great sacrifice. To his affectionate black ser- 
vant he often said, " attend, Francis, to the salvation 
of your soul, which is the object of greatest impor- 
tance ;" and seemed to take pleasure in explaining 
to him passages of Scripture, and giving him religious 



228 BIOGRAPHY OF PIOUS PERSONS. 

instruction. Cherishing thus in his mind the trae 
Christian scheme, both rational and consolatory, 
uniting justice and mercy in the Divinity, with the 
improvement of human nature, while the holy sacra- 
ment was celebrated in his apartment, he fervently 
uttered this prayer. 

" Almighty God, and njost merciful Father, I am 
now, as to human eyes it seems, about to comme- 
morate for the last time the death of thy son Jesus 
Christ, our Saviour and Redeemer. Grant, 
Lord, that my whole hope and confidence may be in 
his merits and thy mercy ; enforce and accept my 
imperfect repentance ; make this commemoration 
available to the confirmation of my faith, the estab- 
lishment of my hope, and the enlargement of my 
charity ; and make the death of thy son Jesus 
Christ effectual to my redemption. Have mercy 
upon me, and pardon the multitude of my offences. 
Bless my friends ; have mercy upon all men : sup- 
port me by thine Holy Spirit in the days of weak- 
ness, and at the hour of death ; and receive me, 
after death, to everlasting happiness, for the sake of 
Jesus Christ. — Amen." 

The night before his death he suffered great 
distress, but vyas perfectly composed ; steady in 
hope, and resigned to death. At the interval of 
every hour, his attendants assisted him to sit up in 
his bed, and to move his limbs, which were incredibly 
swollen, and in much pain. At these times, he 
regularly addressed himself to fer\'ent prayer, and 
though sometimes his voice failed him, his senses 
continued perfect, and his recollection unbroken. 
He said his mind was prepared, and the time to his 
dissolution seemed long. At six in the morning ho 



DR. SAMUEL JOHNSON. 229 

inquired the hour, and on being informed, said that 
all went on regularly, and he fielt he had but a few 
hours to Uve. No man could appear more collected, 
more devout, or less terrified at that awful moment 
which comes to all. A little before his last moment, 
the daughter of a particular friend of his, called, and 
earnestly entreated permission to see him, that she 
might beg him to give her his last blessing. Being 
told who stood near him, he turned himself in his 
bed, and said " God bless you — my dear." 

This was his last action, these were his last words ; 
full of benevolence and devotion. His difficulty of 
breathing increased till about seven in the evening, 
when two friends who were sitting in the room, 
observing that the sound of his respiration had 
ceased, drew his curtains ; but nothing was there 
save a breathless mass of clay, — a countenance 
pale and tranquil, and a heart no longer agitated with 
mortal suffering. The many who had loved and 
revered him in life, hasted to do him honor at his 
death ; and seven days after his decease, his re- 
mains were deposited in Westminster Abbey, and 
covered with a stone bearing this inscription. — 

Samuel Johnson, L.L. D. 

Obiit 13 die Decembris, 

Anno Domini 

1784. 
^tatis SHOE. 75. 

An appropriate monument now marks the spot 
where his ashes repose, but he has erected for 
himself a more durable monument, in the reverence 
of posterity, and has obtained, we trust, a more 
noble mansion in the " house not made with hands." 
19* 



REV. GEORGE WHITEFIELD. 



He was the son of Thomas Whitefield, and Eliz- 
abeth Edwards, was the youngest of seven children, 

and born at Gloucester, (England) De- 
1714. cember 16th, 1714. When a child of 

two years old, he was deprived of his 
father ; but his mother, by her assiduity and tender- 
ness, endeavored to supply that early and afflicting 
loss. His progress at school was commendable, 
particularly between the years of 12 and 15, when 
he proceeded rapidly in the Latin Classics ; but the 
bent of his genius was towards eloquence, which 
was observable during the first dawning of reason. 
At 17, he became a devout communicant at the 
Lord's table, spent a great part of his time in reli- 
gious reading, prayer, fasting, and the appointed or- 
dinances, so that his thoughts seemed constantly 
exercised respecting the great truths of salvation. 
The following year he entered the University of 
Oxford, and finding serious and practical piety in a 
very low state among the established denominations, 
he cultivated an acquaintance with the Methodists, 
then a new sect, who seemed to display more of the 
spirit and power of religion. 

He was treated by (hem with particular kindness, 
and received so much benefit from the preaching 



REV. GEORGE WHITEFIELD. 231 

and friendship of the Rev. Charles Wesley, that 
he used to call him his spiritual father. lie now 
began to divide his time methodically, and labor to 
improve every moment to the best advantage ; — he 
visited the sick, and the prisoners, read to the poor, 
and received the communion every Sabbath. For 
daring to bo thus singularly religious, he incurred 
the hatred of his fellow-students, and daily felt the 
effects of their unkind behaviour. , At his return 
from the university, he preferred the sacred writings 
to all other books, and from perusing them with 
constant prayer, found unspeakable delight and ad- 
vantage. He read three times a week to the poor 
people of the town, prayed with the prisoners in the 
county gaol every day, and by his conversation and 
prayers awakened many minds. 

At the age of 21, after much previous meditation 
and prayer, he passed through the solemnities of 
ordination, and at his first sermon in London his ap- 
pearance of extreme youth excited the wonder of 
the audience, and many sneered to see a stripling in 
a gown, ascend the pulpit. But he had not proceed- 
ed far in his discourse, before their smiles gave 
place to attention, and their contempt was turned 
into reverence. The Spirit of God gave a blessing 
to his earliest attempts, and those who mocked, sent 
a complaint to his ordaining Bishop, that he " had 
dnven fifteen mad with his first sermon." He con- 
tinued to spend his time diligently and methodicfilly ; 
dividing every day into three parts ; eight for sleep 
and meals ; eight for public prayers, catechising and 
visiting ; and eight for study and retirement His 
general rule was to preach nine times • in a week, 
and sometimes four times on the Lord's day, and ad- 



232 BIOGRAPHY OF PIOUS PERSONS. 

minister the sacrament so early in the morning, that 
the streets were seen filled with people, hastening 
to church with lanthoms in their hands, and conver- 
sing on the things of God. 

"UTien he preached, the largest churches were 
scarcely able to contain the audience ; some would 
hang upon the railing, others climb up to the leads 
of the building, while the church would be so heated 
with their breath, that the steam was seen to fall 
from the pillars like drops of rain. But with his 
popularity, opposition and the hatred of envy, sprung 
up also, like tares among the wheat. Yet he found 
comfort in the midst of discouragement from the 
exercise of prayer, and when his strength was ex- 
hausted by the labors of the day, would continue in 
this duty, even till midnight ; — and once spent a 
whole night with a few associates, entreating for the 
advancement of the gospel, and praising God. 
About this time he received an invitation to go to 
America, which agreed with his wishes. But when 
in prospect of his departure, he mentioned in a dis- 
course, " it might be they would see his face no 
more," the whole congregation burst into a violent 
flood of tears. Multitudes followed him home 
weeping, and the next day he was employed from 
seven in the morning till midnight, in advising, en- 
couraging and directing inquiring souls. 

As the time of his embarkation approached, they 
grew still more affectionate and sorrowful ; and 
would run and stop him in the alleys with wishful 
looks, and eyes streaming with tears. The night 
before his departure he spent in prayer, administer- 
ed the Sacrament in the morning to his afflicted 
friends, and after an almost insupportable parting, 



REV. GEORGE WHITEFIELD. 233 

left his native country. He found the crew of the 
ship in which he sailed, very blasphemous and aban- 
doned, and the officers gave him to understand that 
they viewed him as an impostor, and should treat 
him as such. But so great was his perseverance in 
the duties of his office, such his patience, mildness, 
and firmness in declaring the truth, and such the di- 
vine blessing on his prayers, that many were brought 
to consider and reform, and the whole crew were 
led to attend every day with great solemnity, to 
preaching, exposition and prayer. They now exhib- 
ited the regidarity of a church, and he returned ma- 
ny thanks for this voyage, which in its beginning 
was so unpromising. 

At his arrival in Georgia, he found every appear- 
ance of a suffering mfant colony. But he was re- 
ceived with great kindness and cordiaUty, and after 
preaching and instructing them, and projecting the 
plan of a future Orphan-house, returned to England. 
Here he found opposition assuming a new and for- 
midable face. He was ridiculed as a Methodist, 
and access denied him to many pulpits. He began 
at this time to preach without notes, in the open air, 
and his audience sometimes amounted to 20 and 
30,000. Having a remarkably strong, audible 
voice, he rendered himself perfectly understood by 
the most remote parts of the congregation, and was 
frequently heard at the distjmce of a mile. He 
sometimes encountered insults and danger, but he 
counted not his life dear unto him. Though he 
might have lived in ease and affluence, still he wan- 
dered from place to place, stood and preached at 
bowling greens, market places and highways, heard 
himself blamed by friends, and reviled by enemies, 



234 BIOGftAPHY OF PIOUS PERSONS. 

yet inwardly supported, he endured all things joy- 
fully. After making frequent collections tor his 
Intended orphan-house, he returned to Georgia, and 
on the 25th of March, 1740, laid the first stone of 
the building, which he called Bethesda, the house 
of mercy. He received forty orphans, provided 
them with food and raiment, and employed a large 
number of workmen, so that his family amounted to 
nearly a hundred. 

He travelled through a great part of the United 
States, and though in a very ill state of health, 
preached with great vigor and success. Three 
times a day he was lifted on his horse, unable to 
mount otherwise, then rode and preached, and when 
he came into a house, would lay himself down on 
two or three chairs. This course, he acknow- 
ledged, would soon take him to his desired rest. 

After passing through New England, awakening 
many, and causing many to rejoice, he visited his 
orphan-house, returned to England, and began his 
circuits through Scotland, and Wales, where his 
success in converting sinners and quickening saints, 
was almost unparalleled. He felt it his incumbent 
duty, to travel from kingdom to kingdom, and from 
continent to continent, publishing the everlasting 
gospel of the grace of God. Hardships, trials, 
and dangers awaited him, but he bore them like a 
good soldier of Jesus Christ. Once, while preach- 
ing in Moorfields, during the holiday seasons, the 
leaders of the customary diversions, enraged to find 
their usually attendant throngs collected to hear him, 
engaged a merry-andrew to mount upon a man's 
shoulders, and with a long heavy whip annoy the 
speaker. But he continued his sermon notwith- 



REV. GEORGE WUITEFIELO. 235 

standing blows ; they then sent a recruiting sergeant 
with his drum, to pass through the congregation. 
" Make way for the king's officer," said the unagi- 
tated preacher, and the crowd quietly moved for 
him to pass. The owners of the booths, enraged 
to desperation, collected a large mob, and came on 
in a most threatening manner, with drums, and war- 
like instruments to attack the congregation. But 
they maintained their ground, and \N hitefield prayed 
earnestly for support and deliverance, when lo ! the 
ferocious party quarrelled among themselves, threw 
down their standard and retired, while the successful 
saint continued for three hours to instruct and pray 
with an attentive and weeping multitude. 

At Plymouth, he was attacked at midnight in 
his bed, by a soldier who pretended to come to con- 
verse with hirn about religion, but who previously 
laid a wager of ten guineas that he dared to murder 
him. But God preserved him from the hand of 
the murderer and also from the fury of the Roman 
Catholics in Ireland, who, following him as he re- 
turned from preaching, poured upon him vollies of 
stones from all quarters, and made him reel back- 
ward and forwards, till he was almost breathless. A 
soldier and four preachers, who attended him, fled, 
and left him to walk alone through hundreds of enrag- 
ed papists. He received many wounds, particularly a 
large one near his temples : — " I thought then of Ste- 
phen," said he, " and hoped to go, like him, in that 
bloody triumph, to the immediate presence of my 
Master." Speechless, and covered with blood, 
he was at length received into the house of a min- 
itster, where his wounds were washed, and his faint- 
ing liie restored. 



236 BIOGRAPHY OF PIOUS PERSONS. 

God had still more work for him to do, and witii 
renewed ardor he engaged in his service. He was 
frequently brought low with illness ; but nothing 
damped his resolution. " Spare not the weak bo- 
dy," he writes to a friend, " we are immortal till 
our work is done. O ! for power equal to my will ! 
I would fly from pole to pole, publishing the ever- 
lasting gospel of the Son of God." When he was 
not engaged in preaching or prayer, or composing 
religious works, or visiting the distressed, or coun- 
selling the inquiring, his mind was occupied in chari- 
table and benevolent plans. Many poor were re- 
lieved by his liberality, many widows supported, and 
his Georgia Orphan house, whose expenses were 
incredible, was converted by his perseverance into 
an extensive, beautiful , and permanent institution. 
This man was indeed a sign and wonder in the 
earth. Who that knows the danger of frequently 
and violently straining the lungs, especially in youth, 
who that understands the delicacy of their struc- 
ture, would suppose it possible, that a man for the 
space of more than thirty years, should speak 
in the compass of a single week, forty and often 
sixty hours to many thousands, and after this labor 
instead of taking rest should be ofi'eruig up prayers, 
intercessions, and hymns, not only in private, but 
at every house where he was invited. Yet he con- 
tinued to proclaim with earnestness, " Repent ye, 
for the kingdom of heaven is at hand," not only in 
every part of England, but in Wales, Scotland, 
Ireland, in the Bermudas and America, from Geor- 
gia to Boston. In journeyings often, in perils of 
robbers, in perils of his own countrymen, in tlie 
city, in the wilderness, on the ocean, among ene- 



REV. GEOUGB WHITEFIELD. 237 

mies, among false brethren, in weariness, pain and 
weakness, he approved himself a faithful minister 
of Christ. In the autumn of 1769, he embarked 
the last time for America, and prepared to crosg 
the Atlantic the thirteenth time. His afflicted 
friends breakfasted with him in the ship on the mor- 
ning of his departure. " Oh," said he, " what mean 
you, thus to weep and break my heart ?" At his 
arrival he found his orphan-house in a flourishing 
situation, and went on still to beautify and improve 
it, calculating to connect with it an Academy and 
College. The Governor, Council and Assembly 
of Georgia, being invited to visit it and attend di- 
vine service in its chapel, expressed their admira- 
tion and gratitude in the warmest terms to its Bene- 
factor. 

In the summer of 1770, he left his beloved 
Bethesda to journey northward, calculating to return 
to it when the cool season commenced ; but God, 
who seeth not as man seeth, had decreed that he 
should return thither no more. He writes, " Preach-" 
•ing is my catholicon, and praying my antidote to 
every trial. The Lord only knows how he will be 
pleased to dispose of me ; great afflictions I am 
sure of having ; and a sudden death, blessed be 
God, will not be terrible. I know that my Re- 
deemer liveth." As he passed through the middle 
and eastern states, he continually preached to large 
and attentive congregations, and was received by 
them with affection and reverence, as if he had 
been an angel of God. 

As he journeyed in Massachusetts, in the au- 
tumn of 1770, he was greatly importuned to preach 
at Exeter, and though considerably indisposed, 
20 



238 BIOGRAPHY OF PIOUS PERSONS. 

addressed to a multitude in the fields there, a dis- 
course of two hours in continuance. Before he 
went out to preach that day, a friend observing that 
he looked very ill. said, " Sir, you are more fit to 
go to bed than to preach." " True, Sir," answered 
the patient sufferer, and turning aside, clasped his 
hands, and raising his eyes to heaven, prayed audi- 
bly, " Lord Jesus, I am weary in thy work, but not 
of thy work. If I have not yet finished my course, 
let me go and speak for thee once more in the fields, 
seal thy truth, and come home and die." How 
visibly was that request granted ! He went, and 
spake in the fields, sealed the truth of his master, 
came home and died. From the 12th of the se- 
cond of Corinthians, the dying man spake to the 
concourse, " Of myself I will not glory, but in my 
infirmities." After sermon he rode to Newbury- 
port, with his friend, the Rev. Mr. Parsons, supped 
and retired early. 

His servant found him reading in the Bible, with 
Dr. Watts's Psalms lying open beside him. Kneel- 
ing down by his bed, he closed the evening with 
prayer, and rested quietly till two in the mortiing, 
when he awoke panting for breath, and asked that 
the window might be raised higher. " I wish," 
said his anxious servant, "you would not preach 
so often." — " I had rather wear out, than rust out," 
he answered. Raising himself in the bed, he lifted 
up his voice in its last earthly prayer. He prayed 
for a blessing upon his preaching the preceding day, 
that many souls might be brought to Christ ; ask- 
ed for direction in his journey, for a blessing on his 
Bethesda College, and his dear orphans, for his 
congregations in England, and all his connections 



REV. GEORGE WHITEPIELD. 239 

there ; and then composed himself to sleep again. 
In an hour and a quarter he awoke. " My asthma, 
my asthma is coming on ; I wish I had not promis- 
ed to preach at Haverhill on Monday. I fear I 
shall not be able ; but I shall see what a day will 
bring forth." 

His servant, in preparing a medicine, awaked 
Mr. Parsons, who came in, and inquired how he 
felt. " I am almost suffocated," said he, " my 
asthma quite chokes me." Drawing his breath 
with extreme difficulty and pain, he rose, and stood 
at an open window. Turning to his servant, he 
said, " I am dying." "01 hope not, sir," said the 
atHicted attendant. He ran panting to the other 
window, but could find no relief. " I am dying," 
repeated he, and spake no more. They persuaded 
him to swallow a little warm wine, to sit down, and 
be covered with his cloak, while they sent to hasten 
the physician. His eyes were now fixed, and his 
under lip drawing in, every time he respired. The 
physician as he entered, felt his pulse, and exclaimed, 
" He is a dead man." " I do not believe it," said 
Mr. Parsons, " you must do something." " I cannot, 
he is now near his last breath." This was indeed 
80 ; for stretching himself out, with one gasp he 
expired. This was exactly at six o'clock, on the 
morning of the Sabbath, September 30, 1770. 
Unwilling to believe that he must speak to them no 
more, they bathed him in heated spirits, laid him in 
a warm bed, and continued to rub him with warm 
flannel, to raise him upright, and to hold warm spirits 
to his nose, for more than an hour, till they were 
convinced that no life remained. 



240 BIOGRAPHY OF PIOUS PERSONS. 

While thus they strove to wake the senseless dust, 
High soar'd the spirit with its kind red just, 
Explor'd the climes remote from pain and wo, 
Nor cast a glance on toils so vain, below. 



This was the end of a man, endowed with every- 
thing amiable and excellent. He united two char- 
acters which are not often seen in imison : the 
finished, complete gentleman ; and the humble, 
ardent Christian. Nature had given him a graceful 
and well proportioned person ; a manly and expres- 
sive countenance ; a deportment easy and prepos- 
sessing. His eyes were of a dark blue color, and 
very sprightly ; his complexion fair ; his person in 
youth slender, and inclined to move with grace and 
agility, in gesture suitable to his discourse. Some 
years before his death, when his health began to 
decline, he was observed to grow more corpulent. 
He was temperate in eating and drinking, even to a 
proverb ; and remarkably neat in his person and 
apparel, sometimes observing pleasantly, " that a 
minister of Christ should be without spot." Ho 
had a voice of incredible strength, yet tempered 
with an uncommon degree of sweetiiess, and his 
command of it was wonderful. His pronunciation 
was manly and graceful, nor was he ever at a loss 
for the most natural and strong expression. His 
eloquence was devoid of all appearance of affecta- 
tion ; he seemed quite unconscious of the talents 
he possessed, and would lose himself in regard for 
his hearers, and the importance of the subject he 
preached. He spoke like one who did not seek 
their applause, but who, from a principle of unfeigned 



REV. GEORGE WHITEFIELD. 241 

love was anxious for their best interests, and de- 
sirous to lead them in the right way. 

He commanded the attention of multitudes as if 
by magic : the feelings of the most thoughtless were 
solemnized ; they would hang upon his lips. The 
most rude and unimpressible would soften into tears, 
and when he enforced the gentle claims of charity, 
the avaricious would impart so liberally, that when 
they returned to their former tempers, they would be 
induced to think that their* money had been drawn 
from them by magic. The grand sources of his 
eloquence were an exceeding lively imagination, 
which made people think (hey saw what he described ; 
an action still more lively, if possible, by which, 
while every accent of his voice spoke to the ear, 
every feature of his face, every motion of his hands 
tmd body spoke to the eye ; and a heart of such 
acute sensibility, that being susceptible itself of 
every tender and generous emotion, it knew the 
direct approaches to the hearts of others. He had 
also an elevation of mind, which raised him equally 
above praise and censure, and added force and 
dignity to all he said. He had a soul deeply exer- 
cised in the social, pious and religious affections, 
and was at the same time most remarkably commu- 
nicative and sincere ; by which means he was 
peculiarly fitted to awaken like feelings in others, 
and to sympathize with every one who had them. 

Great was the blessing attendant on his unwearied 
exertions, and humble prayers ; and many souls 
were given him as crowns of his rejoicing. But 
now his warfare is finished ; he has fought the good 
fight, and Uke a hero, died on the field of battle. 
20* 



242 BIOGRAPHY OF PIOUS PERSONS. 

After exhibiting in his life all the virtues of the 
Christian character, the whole scope of its activity, 
the whole ardor of its zeal, he obtained the extent 
of his prayers ; a visible blessing upon his labors, 
and a sudden dismission to everlasting rest. 



REV. SAMUEL BUELL. 



Samuel Buell was born at Coventry, in Con- 
necticut, Sept. 1, 1716. His father was a wealthy 
farmer, and for many years having no 

1716. other son, destined him for the pursuits of 
agriculture, in which line of life his pros- 
pects were flattering. But in the 17th year of his 
age, he became a subject of strong conviction and 
thorough awakening, and found his views so 
changed, as to desire to leave the plenty and wealth 
of his expected situation, for the more difficult and 
eventful life of a preacher of the gospel. After 
seeking for two years the direction of God by 
prayer, closely observing the prevailing temper of 
his heart, and advising with his friends, he entered 
on a course of study, received the honors of Yale 
College in 1741, and the same year was licensed, 
after passing the usual examinations to general 
satisfaction. His preaching was remarkably bles- 
sed with full demonstration of the Spirit, many 
owned him as their spiritual father, and he was the 
first instrument of the great revival at Northampton, 
in 1742, in the time of President Edwards. 

After laboring successfully as an itinerant preach- 
er for the space of five years, he was installed at 
East Hampton, on Long Island, in September, 



244 BIOGRAPHY OF PIOUS PERSON?. 

1746, and a people who had before been greatly 
divided, became in him as remarkably united. 
Here he prosecuted his studies with great ardor, 
performing his parochial duties with equal zeal, 
frequently preaching many times in the week, cate- 
chising the children, instructing the youth, adminis- 
tering consolation to the distressed, showing mercy 
to the poor. His favorite maxim was, " usefulness 
in life." His spiritual labors were succeeded by 
three great and general revivals, at one of which no 
less than 99 persons came forth at once to take 
upon them the vows of Christ, beside considerable 
numbers at other seasons of awakening. His 
church was noted for its sobriety, and his people for 
their strong attachment to him. 

In the revolutionary contest, when that beautiful 
island became for a time the theatre of war, and 
when the inhabitants were flying in every direction 
before the enemy, he thought it his duty to remain 
like a true shepherd with the remnant of his flock. 
He successfully exerted his utmost influence in 
favor of the distressed ; by his instrumentality many 
impossible demands of the enemy were recalled, 
and many rigorous ones softened ; and though his 
activity often excited the resentment of an imperi- 
ous soldiery, and his life was more than once immi- 
nently endangered, he shrunk not from his post, 
and as he had before been the father, so was he now 
the defender of his people. The accumulated care 
of the neighboring churches lay also upon him, as 
there was but one minister within forty miles, able 
to do service, and he was confined to his own pa- 
rish by the infirmities of age. What this zealous, 
active, and courageous man performed in those 



REV. SAMUEL BUEI.L. 245 

days of darkness and dismay, it is impossible for 
me in these narrow limits to recount. Suftlce it to 
say, that his praise was in the mouths of multitudes, 
as it had been before in the churches. 

Dr. Buell's publications are, fourteen sermons on 
peculiarly important subjects and occasions, and a 
narrative of tlie work of God among the people of 
his charge in 1740. These are expressions of a 
strong mind and ardent piety, and have been read 
with pleasure and advantage by the lovers of experi- 
mental religion. Of his public spirit, and love of 
science, Clinton Academy, in East Hampton, is a 
monument ; for of this institution he was the father 
and patron. In his private character he possessed 
a happy disposition, a sprightly genius, and an active 
mind. " Whatever his hand found to do he did it 
with his might." He was much of the gentleman 
as well as the Christian ; in the various relations of 
husband, parent, master, friend, and neighbor, he 
was aftectionato and happy : his house was the 
mansion of hospitality, and no man rejoiced more 
than he in receiving and entertaining his friends. 
JJut though to his flock he was a pattern of Chris- 
tian graces and duties, he excelled in nothing more 
than in a spirit of devotion. Of the power and 
efficacy of prayer he had the highest opinion, en- 
deavored to excite others to its exercise, and abound- 
ed in it himself. He considered it as a necessary 
part of preparation for the sanctuary, and found the 
exercises of the pulpit which were generally his de- 
light and his life, burdensome without it. Ho enter- 
tained a deep sense of his dependence upon God 
for every enjoyment, and was disposed to acknow- 
ledge and trust in him under every changing cir- 



246 BIOGRAPHY OF PIOUS PERSONS. 

cumstance. Thus in his sermon upon the death of 
his first wife he expresses himself, " I hope your can- 
dor will not deem it ostentation for me to say that 
my comforts were received with prayer, praise, 
and the joy of trembling ; and have been parted 
with, however nature might oppose, with prayer^ 
submission, and at last, praise." 

He was a man whose joys and afflictions were 
great and peculiar ; he laid in the^grave the remains 
of two wives in whom he was very happy, and of eight 
children, which, in connection with four servants, 
make the deaths in his family amount to fourteen. 
He was accustomed to preach on the occasion of 
a death in his household, that his people might reap 
benefit from his bereavements. Two of these dis- 
courses are published, and show a sweet compo- 
sure of mind and resignation of spirit ; one on the 
death of a daughter of great accomplishments and 
piety ; the other his only son, a religious youth of 
sixteen, whose excellent talents were improved by 
a classical education, and whom he had viewed as 
the supporter of his name, the hope of his family, 
and his successor in the ministry. 

It was the prayer of this extraordinary man, that 
he might not outlive his usefulness, a prayer fervent- 
ly offered, and signally answered. The day he m as 
eighty years old he rode fourteen miles, preached, 
and returned home in the evening ; and firm health, 
and soundness of mind, the probable result of the 
strictest temperance, continued with him till the last. 
He preached the Sabbath but one before his death» 
and just as he entered his 83d year, an illness seized 
him that was short, severe and mortal. The warmth 
and propriety of his exhortations to those around 



REV. SAMUEL BUELL. 247 

him proved the firmness of his intellect ; while on 
his countenance there was an expression of joy like 
that of a wanderer who sees his long parted home. 
His soul was so attracted to a better world, that 
he could not bear that the assiduities of his friends 
should strive to detain him in this, and with his eyes 
and his aflections turned from the vanities of time 
he seemed triumphantly to enter into the joys of his 
Lord, on Thursday, July 19, 1798. 



WILLIAM COWPER, EStl. 



Wii-LiAM CowpER, an excellent moral poet, was 
descended from an ancient family, distinguishablo 
both for rank and talents ; and was the son of the 
Rev. John Cowper, chaplain of George II. He 
was born at Great Barkhamstead, in the 
1731. year 1731, and at the age of 6 was de- 
prived of his excellent mother, whose loss 
he deeply deplored. His fihal tenderness and af- 
fection for her memory are touchingly delineated in 
a little poem occasioned by the sight of her picture, 
more than 50 years after her death. He seemed 
peculiarly to require the attentions of maternal ten- 
derness, not only from the feebleness of his consti- 
tution, but from that shrinking timidity of mind, 
which was confirmed into the most oppressive diffi- 
dence, and occasionally darkened into deplorable 
melancholy. He passed through the forms of a 
public education, with the same painful susceptibili- 
ty of mind, yet his intellectual powers, strong and 
ardent, shone with clear splendor through the veil 
that encompassed them. His biographer remarks 
that, " reserved as he was, to an extraordinary and 
painful degree, his heart and mind were yet admira- 
bly fitted by nature for all the refined intercourse, 
and confidential delights of friendship and of love ; 



WILLIAM COWFBR, ESQ. 249 

but though formed to possess and comiiiunicate an 
extmordinary portion of human felicity, the incidents 
of his Hfc, and the susccptiliility of his fecHngs were 
such, as to render him at diiFerent times deeply de- 
pressed and unhappy." 

He had acquired a competent knowledge of the 
law, and was appointed reading clerk to the House 
of Lords, yet his terror of appearing in that pubUc 
character so tortured his timid and delicate mind as 
to destroy at once his health and mental tranquillity. 
His anxious friends immediately placed him under 
the care of Dr. Cotton, a celebrated physician and 
poet, whose medical skill and benignity of manners, 
were rendered instrumental by the blessing of Heav- 
en to the comfort of the reviving invalid. About 
this time, distressing apprehensions for his eternal 
welfare were added to \a» constitutional sadness, till 
by the power of divine grace,' his gloom and terror 
gave way to the lustre of comfort and delight. Just 
and cheering views of evangelical truth arose in his 
mind, while reading the third chapter of Romans, 
and from the most distressing anxiety, he found that 
the contemplations and exercises of devotion were 
unspeakably dear to his reviving spirit. The con- 
solation which he experienced after the severest dis- 
tress he thus describes in an affecting allegory. 

" I was a stricken deer, that left the herd 
Long since ; with many an arrow deep infix'd, 
My panlinc side was charg'd, when I withdrew 
To seek a tranquil death in distant shades. 
There was I found by one who had himself 
Been hurt by tlie archers. In his side he bore 
And in his hands and feet tlie cruel scars. 
With gentle force soliciting the darts, 
He drew thcni forth, and hcal'd, and bade rac live." 
21 



250 BIOGRAPHY OF PIOUS PERSONS. 

In this pleasing tranquillity of mind, he resolved 
to withdraw himself from the bustle and intercourse 
of a vexatious world, and enjoy the delights of re- 
tirement and of poetry. In the affectionate family 
of the Rev. Mr. tin win, he found a beloved asylum, 
where he spent almost the whole of his remaining 
life, and composed the principal part of his literary 
productions. His translations of Homer's Iliad and 
Odyssey ; of Milton's Latin and Italian poems ; 
his own " Task," fugitive pieces and Letters, furnish 
many volumes, and bear witnes.j at once to his indus- 
try and genius, his amiable character, and exalted 
piety. During his residence at Olney, he was under 
the pastoral care of the celebrated Mr. Newton, and 
their endeared and intimate friendship, is thus men- 
tioned by that remarkable clergyman. " For nearly 
twelve years, we were seldom separated for seven 
hours at a time, when we were awake and at home. 
The first of those six years I passed in daily admir- 
ing and endeavoring to imitate him ; during the sec- 
ond six, I walked pensively with him in the valley 
of the shadow of death." Cowper, in his whole 
life and conversation, was indeed a follower of Christ. 
In his secret devotions he was regular and fervent ; 
in his charities frequent, and hberal, notwithstanding 
his limited finances. " He loved the poor," says 
the Reverend Mr. Newton, " he often visited them 
in their cottages, conversed with them in the most 
condescending manner, sympathised with them ; 
counselled and comforted them in their distresses ; 
and those who were seriously disposed, were often 
cheered and animated by his prayers." 

Over the last years of his hfe was drawn a cloud 
of mental depression. It was the effect of physi- 



WILLIAM COWPER, ESQ. 261 

cal disorder, and a broken constitution, and gradual- 
ly undermined his strong intellectual powers. But 
his sorro\Vs were mercifully terminated by a most 
mild and tranquil dissolution, for he passed through 
the awful passage of death so gently, that although 
five persons were anxiously observing him, not one 
perceived him to expire : but he had ceased to 
breathe, about five minutes before 5 in the after- 
noon, April 25, 1800. 



DR. .JA31ES BKATTIE. 



James Beattie was born October 25, 1735, at 
Lawrencekirk, an obscure hamlet, in the county of 
Kincardine, in Scotland. His father stip- 
1735. ported his family, principally by the em- 
ployment of agriculture, and resided on 
the same spot which his ancestors had cultivated 
for many generations. Our poet was the youngest 
of six children, and if from his family he derived, in 
the eyes of the world, no additional lustre, he at 
least incun-ed no disgrace, for they were examples 
of honesty and integrity, and distinguished in their 
neighborhood as the possessors of superior under- 
standing. Ilis mother, whose maiden name was 
Jane Watson, was thought a woman of uncommon 
abilities, and after the death of her husband, con- 
tinued his business, and educated her youngest son 
at the parish school of Lawrencekirk. 

At the age of 14, he commenced his academical 
course, at Marischal College, Aberdeen, and be- 
came a candidate for one of the bursaries provided 
for the students of slender finances. No humilia- 
ting idea was annexed to the appellation of Rursar, 
at Aberdeen, which signifies only the receiver of an 
annual stipend, given as the reward of diligence in 
learning, and superior merit. On the first year of 



DR. JAMES BEATTIE. 253 

his attendance he gained the premium from his 
whole class, and used often to acknowledge with 
gratitude, that here, by the encouragement of Dr. 
Blackwell, the principal of the University, he was 
first led to believe himself possessed of any genius. 
He finished his course of study, in four years, and 
at the age of 18 was appointed parochial school- 
master of Fourdon, a small hamlet at the foot of the 
Grampian Mountains. Here in the bosom of soli- 
tude, estranged from literary society, and in a great 
measure from books', his amusements were the con- 
templation of the sublime scenery which his resi- 
dence afforded, and the cultivation of those poetical 
powers, which were afterwards to charm all who 
could estimate the delineated beauties of nature, or 
the fine combinations of harmori)(. 

But in the fifth year of his seclusion, he was call- 
ed to the more lucrative office of usher in a gram- 
mar school at Aberdeen, and in a short time was 
presented with the chair and professorship of Moral 
Philosophy, in the University where he was edu- 
cated ; an office far exceeding his most sanguine 
hopes, but not transcending his talents or quedifica- 
tions. 

At the age of 24 he was installed in his new dig- 
nity, and found himself suddenly raised to a station 
of much respectability, to the cherished intimacy of 
men of the first moral and literary character, and to 
a sphere from whence knowledge of the most im- 
portant nature might be widely disseminated. 

His first care was to prepare a course of lectures 

on the sciences of Moral Philosophy and Logic, 

which afterwards, condensed and perfected, were 

given to the world under the title of " Elements of 

21* 



254 BIOGRAPHV OF PIOUS PERSONS. 

Science." His duty was to teach in his class three 
hours of every week day, during the term, at 8, at 
11, and at 3. He began his prelections with the 
" Offices of Cicero," of which every student read 
and translated a part at their morning meeting ; and 
at the next hour he commented upon the part under 
review, compared it with the other systems of hea- 
then philosophy, examined them on the substance 
of what they had heard, and at the end of this intro- 
ductory course, dictated an abstract of the whole, 
which they committed to writing. 

His next course was Natural Theology, Specula- 
tive and Practical Ethics, Economics, Jurispru- 
dence, Politics, Rhetoric and Logic. Of each of 
these branches, he dictated in tlie morning an ab- 
stract, on which, a§ on a text-book, he commented 
at the two succeeding lectures of the day, in the 
most clear, lively, and engaging manner ; examin- 
ing his pupils, as he proceeded, on the attention 
they had paid, and the benefit they had derived. 
He read also the Greek and Latin classics, and re- 
quired them to translate as literally as the genius of 
the English language would permit. His indefiitt- 
gable diligence, and exemplary carriage, excited not 
only the affection and reverence of his own class, 
but the whole body of students at the university, 
looked up to him with esteem and veneration. 
The profound piety of the public prayers, with which 
he began the business of each day, arrested the at- 
tention of the youngest and most thoughtless ; the 
excellence of his moral character, his gravity, 
blended with cheerfulness, his strictness, joined with 
gentleness, his favor to the virtuous and diligent, 
and even the mildness of his reproofs, to those who 



DR. JAMES BEATTIE. 26ft 

were less attentive, rendered him the object of re- 
spect and veneration. 

Never was more exact discipline preserved than 
in his class, and never by more gentle means. His 
sway was absolute, but it was founded in reason 
and affection. He never employed a harsh epithet 
in instances of his pupils' misconduct, and when 
instead of a rebuke which they were conscious of 
deserving, they received merely a mild reproof, it 
was conveyed in such a manner as to throw not 
only the offender, but sometimes the whole class, 
into tears. 

To gain his favor was the highest ambition of ev- 
ery student ; and his gentlest word of disapproba- 
tion was a punishment which no exertion was too 
great to avoid. His great object was, not merely 
to make his pupils philosophers, but to render them 
good men, pious Christians, attached to their gov- 
ernment, pure in morals, happy in the consciousness 
of a right conduct, and friends to all mankind. " As 
far as the principles of those committed to my care 
depend upon me," says one of his confidential let- 
ters, " I hold myself accountable to my own con- 
science and the public." Those who had the bene- 
fit of his instructions are never weary of expatiating 
on his unwearied attention, and continued course of 
examination and repetition, that he might imprint up- 
on their minds the pure precepts of philosophy, and 
sublime truths of religion. Nor did his care for 
them cease with their tenn of study ; it was his pe- 
culiar deUght to assist in their future establishment, 
which he had of\cn in his power by recommending 
them as schoolmasters, or private teachers, and in 
their future welfare he took the interest of a father, 



256 BIOGRAPHY OF PIOUS PERSONS. 

and counselled and instructed them by his corres- 
pondence. 

In perusing the voluminous collection of letters 
which he received from them, it is extremely pleas- 
ing to find so great a number Irom young men in 
different parts of the world, particularly America, 
and the West Indies, all of them expressing their 
gratitude for the benefit of his care and instructions, 
and some of them tor the advantageous situations 
they had obtained through his instrumentality. Such 
was the method of Beattie's tuition, and a diary of 
his, in the keeping of his friends, records what was 
done in his class, every day, for more than thirty 
years, and displays his diligence and solicitude in a 
stronger light than any studied eulogium. 

To his own private htudics he gave also a propor- 
tion of lime, and diligent attention. From childhood 
he had borne among his schoolfellows, the appella- 
tion of " the Poet," but his first publication of con- 
sequence was a small volume of occasional poems, 
in the year 1760. This, without patronage, issued 
from the London press, where the author Mas un- 
known, but its intrinsic merit gained the applause of 
the best judges, and conferred upon him the title of 
original genius. 

On the 28th of June, 1767, he was manied to 
Miss Mary Dun, only daughter of the Rector of 
the Grammar School at Aberdeen, to whom he was 
attracted by sympathy of taste, and agreeable ac- 
complishments. Three years after, appeared his 
*' Essay on the Nature and Immutability of Truth," 
in opposition to the infidel writers of the day. It 
was particularly directed at Hume, who then wrs 
in the zenith of his popularity, opulence, and litera- 
21* 



nn. JAMES BEATTIE. 257 

ry reptitation ; but who, havin}^ imbibed the princi- 
ples of a cold-hearted, and gloomy philosophy, 
whose direct tendency was to distract the mind with 
doubts on subjects the most serious and important, 
strove to undermine the best interests, and dissolve 
the strongest bands of society. 

In the defence of truth, Beattie arose with the 
energy of one who feels in earnest, and with the 
wannth of a Christian. In a letter to a friend he 
says, " being honored with the care of a part of the 
British youth, and considering it as my indispensa- 
ble duty, from which I trust I shall never deviate, to 
guard dieir minds against impiety and error, I have 
endeavored to form a right estimate of Mr. Hume's 
philosophy, not only of his peculiar tenets, but also 
of their connection and consequence. But a scheme 
like this cannot be popular, far less lucrative. It 
will raj^e me enemies, and expose me to the most 
rigid criticism, but I trust in Providence, and in the 
goodness of my cause, that my attempts in behalf 
of truth shall not be altogether ineffectual, and that 
my labors shall be attended with some utility to my 
fellow creatures." 

Soon after this publication he was attacked by an 
host of infidel writers, madly pursuing the champion 
who had entered their strong holds, and laid open 
their untenable fortresses. But the praises of good 
men, and the thanks of Christians, consoled him, 
and within, was the silent approbation of his own 
heart. The most judicious critics, the most distin- 
guished characters ip England, admired the work, 
and sought the intimacy of the author ; and the 
king, patronizing both him and his cause, granted 
him a yearly pension of 2UU pounds. Raised to 



268 BIOGRAPHY OF PIOUS PERSONS. 

wealth and honor, by a work from which he expect- 
ed neither, he was taught to realize that a reward 
even in this Ufe often follows the zealous and firm 
discharge of duty. 

In a short time followed the publication of his 
" Minstrel," a work in which the progress of genius 
in the human mind, and descriptions of the imagery 
of nature, are combined with the purest moral sen- 
timents, and clothed with the melody and majesty 
of which English verse is susceptible. In its differ- 
ent sphere it was not less celebrated than his essay, 
and it still remains a monument of exquisite taste, 
and harmonious versification. " It seems to me," 
said the virtuous Lord Lyttleton, after his first pe- 
rusal of it, "that my beloved minstrel, Thompson, 
had come down from heaven, refined by the con- 
verse of pure spirits, to let me hear him sing again, 
the beauties of nature, and the finest feelings pf vir- 
tue, not in human, but angelic strains." His visit 
to London, the ensuing summer, was rendered 
agreeable by the acquisition of many valuable 
friends ; for kings and peers, bishops, poets and 
philosophers, sought to proffer him their friendship, 
and from this period his history is interwoven by 
confidential correspondence with the most distin- 
guished and venerated characters of the age. 

The university of Oxford hastened to confer upon 
him an honorary degree of Doctor of Laws, and on 
the day of it^ pubhc bestowment a Latin Oration 
was pronounced in his praise by the Professor of 
Civil Law, Dr. Vansittart, whi^e the loud and reit- 
erated applause of a vast concourse, convinced him 
that his character was neither unknown, or disre- 
garded. The celebrated artist, Sir Joshua Rey- 



DR. JAMES BEATTIE. 259 

nolds, presented him with his portrait, and executed 
an allegorical painting, representing him as large as 
life, in the character of the champion of truth, while 
an angel descending, darts its rays intensely from 
a sun that blazes on his breast, and three figures, 
differently representing Sophistry, Scepticism, and 
Infidelity, are seen hiding their eyes, and refusing 
" to come to the light lest their deeds should be re- 
proved." This elegant performance was placed in 
the Exhibition, as a specimen of the talents of that 
ingenious and amiable artist. 

The celebrated Mrs. Montague, referring to the 
transactions of the times, says, in one of her letters, 
" It is not on your account alone that I rejoice in 
the honors and marks of distinction and applause 
you have received, but I congratulate the age on 
the zeal with which thev pay regard to merit." In 
this little extract of his life, I have been the more 
diffuse upon this point, to show that the world has, 
in one instance at least, wisely appreciated the ta- 
lentii and virtues of an obscure man. 

In the spring of 1744, his removal to the more 
flourishing university of Edinburgh was repeatedly 
solicited, but in vain ; and immediately after, he re- 
ceived several urgent requests from his friends in 
London, to take orders and enter the Church of 
England. His answer to Dr. Porteus, Eishop of 
London, who offered him a living of 500/. a^ear, is 
an admirable display of purity of principles, 'and in- 
tegrity of mind. Among the reasons that induced 
him to decline the proposal, he numbers one, that 
determined the humane, the pious Wilberforce, in a 
similar choice ; — " that his writings in favour of re- 
ligion would be more attended to, if he continued a 



260 BIOGRAPHY OF PIOUS PERSONS. 

layman." He acknowledges that his opinions, stu- 
dies, way of life, and habits of thinking, were in- 
clined to that profession, that he had several times, 
at different periods of life, been disposed to enter 
it, but had been prevented by incidents so remarka- 
ble, as without presumption might be considered 
particular interpositions of Providence, and though, 
for weighty reasons, he was then induced to de- 
cline it, promises " to the last hour of his life to 
preseiTC a most grateful remembrance of the 
honor intended, and to employ that health and lei- 
sure which Providence might afford, in opposing in- 
fidelity, heresy and error, and in promoting, to the 
utmost of his power, sound literature and Chris- 
tian truth." 

We have seen Beattie suddenly emerging from 
the penury and seclusion that enveloped darkly the 
first twenty-four years of his life, rising as it were 
in a moment, to dignity, and wealth, and reputation, 
and honor. We have seen no affliction mingling 
with his prosperity, no difficulty obstructing his use- 
fulness, no crime staining his name, and have 
almost been led to suppose him exempted from the 
many " ills that flesh is heir to." Yet he, too, hud 
afflictions ; and they fell where he was most vul- 
nerable — in his family. He was a man tremblingly 
alive to every claim of sympathy, to every feeling 
of aft'ection, and where he most expected synipa- 
thy, where he most looked for affection, he felt 
deeply that "the heart knoweth its own bitter- 
ness." His wife, in a very short time afler their 
marriage, gave evidence of a distempered mind, 
and her disease at length terminated in hopeless 
insanity. He watched over, and cherished her. 



DR. JAMES BEATTIE. 261 

with the utmost tenderness, suffering anxious days 
and sleepless nights, until the physicians pronounced 
her seclusion from society absolutely necessary, 
and he then procured for her every possible accom- 
modation and comfort. " When I reflect on his 
unwearied and unremitting attention to her," says 
an intimate friend, " his character is exalted in my 
mind to a degree which may be equalled, but 
I am sure can never be excelled, and which makes 
the fame of the poet and philosopher fade from my 
remembrance." 

Disappointed in his hope of rational domestic 
enjoyment, he turned his undivided attention to the 
education of his two sons. His eldest showed a 
taste for a retired and studious life ; he had labored 
from his infancy to instil correct moral and religious 
principles into his mind, and was happy to find that 
his genius inclined to the studies of theology, classi- 
cal learning, morality, poetry and criticism. In 
Latin, Greek and French, he was a successful 
student, and so ffreat was his proficiency, and so 
faultless his deportment, that the university recom- 
mended him to his majesty as a proper successor to 
bis father, and he was accordingly nominated as 
Professor of Moral Philosophy at the age of nine- 
teen. But he was a plant of short duration ; a 
sudden decline seized him, and in his twenty-second 
year, perceiving death to approach, he met it with 
firmness and submission, without delirium or strug- 
gle, complaint or groan. To the afflicted father in 
this hour of wo, might be applied a hne of his 
own effusion — 

" He thought as a sage, while he felt as a man." 
22 



262 BIOGRAPHY OF PIOUS PERSONS. 

In his account of the life of his son, prefixed to a 
selection of his writings, he says, " the Lord gave, 
and the Lord hath taken away, blessed be the name 
of the Lord. I adore the Author of all good, who 
gave him grace to lead such a life, and die such a 
death, as makes it impossible for a Christian to 
doubt of his having entered upon the inheritance of 
a happy immortality." To his only remaining son 
he now turned, as to a last hope. He was ten years 
younger than his lost brother, and of a different 
taste, yet his attainments in science were by no 
means despisable, and his father educated him for 
the church. But a cloud enveloped his fairest prds- 
pects. This only surviving son became the sudden 
victim of a distressing fever, when he had scarcely 
entered his eighteenth year. Looking for the last 
time upon the dead body of his child, he said, " I 
have now done with the world." His letters written 
at this time, no one of common humanity can read 
without emotion. In one he says, " my son Mon- 
tagu sleeps in his brother's grave. A fever cut 
him off in five days, but he spoke with composure 
and Christian piety of his approaching dissolution, 
and gave directions for his iuneral. Within a few 
minutes of his death, he was heard to repeat in a 
whisper the Lord's prayer, and to begin an unfinished 
sentence, of which nothing could be heard but the 
words, '■incorruptible glory.^ But I thank God, 
that though I am now childless, I am entirely re- 
signed. I have had too much experience not to 
know, that the only sources of comfort in cases of 
this kind, are submission to the Divine will, and the 
slow and silent operation of time." 

But he had not long to bear the complicated evils 



PR. JAMES 6EATTIE. 268 

of mortality ; and with a decayed constitution, and 
a mind unhinged and broken, he waited the final 
period of his sutierings. Repeated paralytic shocks 
preceded his dissolutic^n, and for the last year of his 
life deprived him wholly of the power of motion, 
until the morning of Thursday, August 18, 1803, 
when it pleased the Almighty to remove him from 
this world to a better, in the 68th year of his age, 
without apparent pain, for he seemed not to sutler, 
but only to fall asleep. 

But though long dechning, and weary, and like a 
bruised reed shaken over the grave, he forsook not 
his hold upon the strong pillar of our hope. His 
piety was evinced, not merely by his written labors, 
or his regular attendance upon the public ordinances 
of religion, but by his unfeigned resignation to the 
hand that afflicted him, and the unequivocal testimony 
of the strict performance of private devotion. The 
daughter of his favorite sister who resided with him 
till his death, informs, that " after he had retired to his 
chamber, she frequently overheard his voice , ren- 
dered audible by the ardor of prayer ; and that 
throughout the day, when his spirits were more than 
usually depressed, she could perceive that he was 
ofTering up his orisons to heaven, with the utmost 
fervor." This narrow abstract of the life and death 
of a good man, 1 close with an epitaph of his own, 
designed for himself, and written many years pre- 
vious to his death. 

Escap'd the jjloom of mortal life, a soul 
Here leaves its mould'ring tenement of tiny, 
Safe, where no cares their whelming billows roll, 
No doubts bewilder, and no hojics betray. 



264 BIOGRAPHY OF PIOUS PERSONS. 

Like thee, I once have stemm'd the sea of hfe ; 
Like thee, have languisli'd after empty joys ; 
Like thee, have labor'd in the stormy strife ; 
Been griev'd for trifles and amus'd with toys. 

Yet for a while 'gainst Passion's threatful blast 
Let steady Reason urge the struggling oar ; 
Shot through the dreary gloom, the morn at last 
Gives to thy longing eye the blissful shore. 

Forget my frailties, thou art also frail ; 
Forgive my lapses, thou thyself may'st fall ; 
Nor read unmov'd, my artless, tender tale, — 
I was a friend, O man, to thee, to all. 



REV. SAMUEL STILLMAX. 



The Rev. Samuel Stillman, D. D. was a native 

of Philadelphia, born Feb. 27, 1737, educated at 

Charleston, in South Carolina, ordained 

1737. and settled in the ministry at James Isl- 
and, near Charleston, in the 22d year of 
his age. The peculiar nature of a southern climate, 
and the declining state of his health, compelled him 
to part from this pleasant residence after continuing 
there 18 months. A temporary recovery enabled 
him to officiate two years at Bordenstown, New 
Jersey, and with constant exertion to supply two va- 
cant congregations. Afterwards he visited New- 
England, and was prevailed upon to accept the care 
of the first Baptist Church in Boston, where he 
spent the remainder of his days, diffijsing through a 
wide sphere the lustre of his talents, and the spirit 
of his virtues. Nature had endowed him with un- 
common quickness of apprehension, and feelings 
peculiarly ardent and lively. These gave activity 
to all his pursuits, and under the control of religious 
principles, greatly increased his usefulness and 
piety. 

This constitutional fervency both of sentiment 
and action led him to enter with his whole heart into 
whatever he undertook ; yet it was united with a 
delicacy, that would shrink to wound the feelings of 
another, and with such easy and conciliating man- 
22* 



266 BIOGRAPHY OF PIOUS PERSONS. 

ners, as to adapt himself to almost every society, 
without diminishing personal dignity and respect. 
His lively interest in whatever affected his friends, 
the gentleness of his reproofs, and the gratification 
he seemed to feel in commending others, endeared 
him to all his acquaintance. It is said that the 
popularity of a preacher often declines with his 
years, but to this doctrine he was a singular excep- 
tion. For more than 48 years he deservedly retained 
his celebrity ; his congregation, from a small number, 
became one of the largest where he resided, and his 
praise was in all the churches. 

His eloquence was powerful and impressive ; his 
manner so strikingly interesting, that he never 
preached to an inattentive audience ; and the very 
tone and modulation of his voice admirably calcu- 
lated to awaken the feelings. In his prayers there 
was a fervor that seldom failed to raise the devotion 
of his hearers ; they came from the heart, and 
reached the hearts of others. Even those who 
dissented from him in the minor points of theologj", 
sought to hear him, for they knew his sincerity ; — 
they knew him to be a good man, and that what he 
instructed others to be, he himself exemplified. In 
the chamber of sickness and aifliction, he appeared 
like a pitying angel. He knew how to comfort or 
to caution, to soothe, to awaken, or to administer 
reproof, in so mild and delicate a manner, as to 
touch, without distressing the feelings. How many 
wounded hearts he has bound up, from how many 
weeping eyes he has chased tears, to how many 
thoughtless souls brought the spirit of awakening ; 
how many saints he has edified and built up, how 
many wavering minds established, how many re- 



REV. SAMUEL 8TILLMAN. 267 

pentant sinners comforted, can never be fully known 
until the judgment of the great day. 

His domestic character was in perfect imison 
with his public ministrations. Of husbands, he was 
one of the most kind and accommodating ; of 
parents, the most affectionate and endearing. It 
pleased the Author of wisdom to call liim, within 
the space of a few years, to bury seven of his 
children, all of whom had reached years of maturity, 
and some of them were surrounded by infant fami- 
lies. Yet under these pecuhar trials he was 
uniformly patient and submissive, and his mind lost 
nothing of its lively confidence and cheerful hope, 
for it rested, with strong assurance, upon the perfect 
wisdom of the Eternal. 

His constitution from infancy was delicate, yet 
he survived almost all his neighboring clerical con- 
temporaries. It was his constant prayer, that " his 
life and his usefulness might run parallel," and this 
desire was gratified. Slight indisposition detained 
him from church the two last Sabbaths of his Ufe, 
and on the following Wednesday, without any pre- 
vious symptoms, he was attacked by a paralytic 
shock. A few hours after, he received a second 
stroke, grew insensible and expired. 

He was then in his seventieth year ; just touched 
the boundary of the life of man, and, as it were, 
wrapped in a veil, was suddenly taken from the earth. 
Infinite goodness spared him the pain of formal 
separation from a flock and family, whom he most 
tenderly loved, and warmly reciprocated his affection, 
and whose tears must long continue to flow at tiie 
remembrance of the friend and the shepherd who 
has departed. 



REV. JONATHABT EDWARDS, 2d. 



Jonathan Edwards, was the second son of 
the Rev. Jonathan Edwards, President of Prince- 
ton College ; and born at Northampton, 

1745. May 26, 1745. In early childhood he 
was affected with such an inveterate in- 
flammation of the eyes, as to prevent his learning 
to read until a much later period than is common 
in New England, although his capacity was early 
discoverable, and he appeared ambitious of excel- 
ling as soon as the mind began to unfold itself. 
The obstinate malady that so long discouraged his 
exertions, was at length perceived to yield to the 
repeated operation of shaving the head, and the 
hopes of his parents began to revive, that he might 
not be altogether lost to the literary world. When 
he arrived at his sixth year, the unhappy dissension 
between the people of Northampton and his father, 
terminated in his dismission, and removal to Stock- 
bridge. 

While here, this child learned so perfectly the 
language of the Mohekanews or Stockbridge 
Indians, that the natives observed, that " he spoke 
exactly like themselves." This he retained through 
life ; and some years before his death gave the pub- 
lic some interesting remarks upon its construction 



REV. JONATHAN EDWARDS, 2d. 269 

and peculiarities. At the age of ten, his father, 
who intended him for a missionary among the Abo- 
rigines, sent him with the Rev. Gideon Ilawley, to 
Oughqaugu, on the Susquehannah river, to acquire 
the language of the Oneida tribe. This was a 
distance of one hundred miles from any English set- 
tlement, directly through a howling wilderness, yetthe 
courage of the child shrunk not at the undertaking, 
or at the prospect of exchanging the ease of a 
father's house, for the unaccommodating huts of 
the ravages. He made a rapid progress in acquir- 
ing the language, and so gained the aftections of 
the untutored natives, tliat when their settlement 
was once exposed to invasion, they took him upon 
their shoulders, and carried him many miles through 
the wilderness to a place of safety. 

But the breaking out of the French war, render- 
ed his stay among them dangerous, and he returned 
to his father, and some years after removed, with 
the rest of his family, to Princeton, New Jersey. 
In his seventeenth year, he was admitted a student 
at Nassau Hall, and in the second year of his con- 
tinuance there, became religiously impressed, and ob- 
tained hope of reconciliation to God through Jesus 
Christ. He continued for a time, a diary of his 
spiritual state, which shows his constant watch 
against every sin, and care to hve a holy and blame- 
less hfe. In his 18th year, he publicly dedicated 
himself to God, and the following covenant and 
prayer written at the time, show the deep sense that 
he entertained of that interesting and awful solem- 
nity. 



270 BIOGRAPHY OP PIOUS PERSONS. 

J^iTossan Hall, September I7fh, 1763. 

"I, Jonathan Edwards, student of the college 
in New Jersey, on this 17th day of September, 
1763, being the day before the first time I propose 
to draw near to the Lord's table, after much thought 
and due consideration, as well as prayer to Almigh- 
ty God, for his assistance, resolved in the grace 
of God, to enter into an express act of self-dedica- 
tion, to the service of God ; as being a thing highly 
reasonable in its own nature, and that might be of 
eminent service to keep me steady in the Christian 
course, to rouse me from sloth and indolence, and 
uphold me in the day of temptation. 

Eternal and ever blessed God ! I desire, with 
the deepest humiliation and abasement of soul, to 
come, in the name, and for the sake of Jesus Christ, 
and present myself before thee, sensible of my 
infinite unworthiness to appear before thee, and 
especially on such an occasion as this, to enter into 
a covenant with ' thee. But notwithstanding my 
sins have made such a separation between thee and 
my soul, I beseech thee, through Christ thy son to 
vouchsafe thy presence with me, and acceptance 
of the best sacrifice that I can make. I do, O 
Lord, in hopes of thy assisting grace, solemnly 
make an entire and perpetual surrender of all I 
am and have unto thee, being determined in thy 
strength to renounce all former Lords w ho have 
had dominion over me, every lust of the eye, of 
the flesh, and of the mind, and to live entirely devo- 
ted to thee and to thy service. To thee do I con- 
secrate the powers of my mind, with whatever 
improvements thou hast already, or shalt be pleased 
hereafter to grant me in the literary way: purpos- 



REV. JONATHAN EDWARDS, 2D. 271 

iiig, if it be thy good pleasure, to pursue my studied 
assiduously, that I may be better prepared to act 
in any sphere of life in which thou shall place 
me. I do also solemnly dedicate all my posses- 
sions, my time, my influence over others, to be all 
used for thy glory. To thy direction, I resign myself 
and all that I have, trusting all future contingencies 
in thine hands, and may thy will in all things, and 
not mine, be done. Use me, Lord, as an instru- 
ment in thy service. I beseech thee, number me 
among thy |)eople. May I be clothed with the 
righteousness of thy Son : ever impart to me 
through him all needed supplies of thy purifying 
and cheering Spirit. I beseech thee, O Lord, that 
tliou wouldcst enable me to live according to this 
my vow, constantly avoiding all sin ; and when I 
shall come to die, in that solemn and awful hour, 
may 1 remember this my covenant, and do thou, 
O Lord, remember it too, and give my departed spirit 
an abundant admittance into the realms of bliss. 
And if, when I am laid in the dust, any surviving 
friend should meet with this memorial, may it be a 
means of good to him, and do thou admit him to par- 
take of the blessings of thy covenant of grace, 
through Jesus the great Redeemer, to whom with 
thee, O Father, and the Holy Spirit, be ascribed 
everlasting praises, by saints and angels. Amen. 
Jonathan Edwards." 

In 1765, he received the degree of Bachelor of 
Arts; in 1766 was licensed, as a minister; 1767, 
appointed tutor in Princeton College, and two years 
at'ter, ordained pastor over the church of AN hite 
Uaven, a society in the town of ^iew Haven, Con- 



272 BIOGRAFHY OF PIOUS PERSONS. 

necticut. About twelve years after his settlement, 
he met with an affliction that severely tried his 
fortitude as a man, and his resignation as a Christian. 

One fine day in the summer, while taking an 
airing in his chaise, with his wife, in a pleasant part 
of the vicinity, he was called to attend to some ne- 
cessary business, and wished her to return without 
him. As she proceeded homeward, she suffered 
the horse to drink at a watering place iaa small river, 
when he suddenly plunged, fell, and threw her from 
her seat — to a watery grave. This amiable and 
excellent lady left behind her four children, who 
with their father, sustained by this event an unex- 
pected and irreparable loss. The residence of Dr. 
Edwards at White Haven, had long been rendered 
unpleasant, by the opposite religious opinions, 
maintained by many of his most influential parish- 
ioners, and therefore at the mutual request of pastor 
and people, he was dismissed by an ecclesiastical 
council, in May, 1795, having officiated there more 
than twenty-five years. 

A few months after he was unanimously chosen 
the minister of Colebrook, (Conn.) and found him- 
self placed in the midst of an affectionate people, 
and in a retired situation, very favorable to the pro- 
secution of his beloved studies. From this spot, 
which was much endeared to him, he was parted by 
a call to tlie Presidency of Union College, which 
had recently been instituted and endowed, in the 
town of Schenectady, and state of New York. 
Hither he removed in July, 1 799, and assiduously 
devoted his talents and attention, to the improve- 
ment and welfare of this infant seminary. 

In the second year after his investment with that 



REV. JONATHAN EDWARDS, 2d. 273 

important and responsible dignity, he was attacked 
with a lever, whose rapid progress deprived him of 
speech, motion, at intervals of reason, and eventu- 
aJly of life, on the 1st of August, 1801. The ef- 
fects of his disorder prevented him from expressing 
his feelings at the near approach of eternity, but in 
its early stages he expressed entire and cheerful re- 
signation to the will of God ; and now, we trust, he 
reaps the reward of his labors, of his prayers, and 
of his piety. 

This departed saint, when a child, was singularly 
.dutiful and conscientious, and throughout all the 
changes of life the same spirit was discernible. 
From nature he received an ardent, irritable dispo- 
sition, and early formed a resolution, to withstand 
this propensity, until it should be subdued. And 
let those who are formed like him, and like him 
painfully " strive for the mastery," know, that by 
vigilance, by firmness and prayer, he accomplished 
this arduous task, and acquired such an unusual 
command over his passions, as to pass through 
some of the most trying circumstances in which 
man can be placed, with uncommon patience and 
equanimity. Like St. Paul, he knew what it was 
to be abased, and what it was to abound ; and in 
prosperity and adversity he appeared the same. 
His fortitude under trials was great ; not the frigid 
apathy of stoicism, but a constant reliance on Di- 
vine Providence, and resignation to its will. 

As a man of learning and strength of mind, he 
had not a superior in the United States, and proba- 
bly but few in the world. His logical powers were 
preeminent, and little inferior to those of his father ; 
and his talents were improved for the defence, sup- 
23 



274 BIOGRAPHY OF PIOUS PERSONS. 

port and advancement of the religion that he loved. 
As a preacher, his manner of dehvery was bold and 
animated, addressed more to the understanding and 
conscience than to the passions ; yet all who had 
the pleasure to hear him, acknowledge, that in his 
own mode, he was rarely, if ever excelled. His 
reasonings were strong and conclusive, closely con- 
fined to the subject, original and instructive. 

President Edwards, as a son, a husband, a parent 
and member of society, was faithful and exemplary. 
In his manner of life he was strictly methodical. 
Being blessed with good health, he generally rose 
early, and began his regular diurnal routine of duty 
and business ; considering his immediate duty to his 
Creator, as requiring his firstattention, and afterwards 
the relative and social duties of life. His exercise, 
studies, and all other concerns, so far as might be 
consistent with his parochial duties, were systema- 
tized, and uniformly attended in their respective 
seasons. He merited and possessed the esteem 
and affection of an extensive literary and clerical 
acquaintance, who looked upon him, under God, 
as one of the firmest pillars and ablest defenders of 
the church, in a day of declension and infidelity ; 
and in his death, both science and religion sustained 
a loss, which the hand that caused can alone repair. 
His literary productions are, a work entitled, " The 
Salvation of all men, strictly examined, and the 
endless punishment of those who die impenitent, 
argued and defended against the reasonings of Dr. 
Chauncey ;" "a dissertation of Liberty and Necessi- 
ty ;" " Observations on the language of the Stock- 
bridge Indians ;" " Three sermons on the atone- 
ment of Christ," and a variety of occasional dis- 



REV. JONATHAN EDWARDS, 2d. 275 

courses. He edited, also, several posthumous 
works of his father, and left behind him many man- 
uscripts worthy of pubhcation. 

To comprise in one short sentence the excellen- 
cies of this great man, let it be recorded, that he 
was a son loorthy of his parents ; and to those who 
were acquainted with those patterns of piety, this 
will comprehend all that has been written, and all 
that might be said. Between him and his father, 
striking features of resemblance exist. They were 
both distinguished scholars ; tutors of the semina- 
ries where they were educated ; settled in congre- 
gations in which their maternal grandfathers were 
settled before them ; dismissed on account of their 
religious opinions ; settled again in retired situa- 
tions ; elected to the Presidency of a college, and 
within a short time after their inauguration, died, the 
one in his 66th, the other in his 67th year. In per- 
son, mind and life, they were also remarkably similar» 
and to them has sometimes been applied the em- 
phatic eulogium of Shakespeare, 

" Take them all in all, 

You nc'or will look upon their like again." 



SIR WILLIAM JONES. 



This illustrious man was born in Wales, in the 
year 1746. His father was the famous mathema- 
tician, William Jones, who studied niath- 

1746. ematics under Sir Isaac Newton, and was 
at once his pupil and his friend. Under 
the guidance and tuition of such a parent, the mind 
of the son was early formed to regular habits of 
thinking, and endued with the generous enthusiasm 
of literary fame. After acquiring at home, the rudi- 
ments of classical learning, he was placed at school, 
where he distinguished himself by his wonderful 
facility in acquiring the learned languages, and by 
a fine taste in Latin poetry. He was soon made a 
fellow of the university of Oxford, where he was 
equally distinguished for prematurity of mind, and 
unexampled diligence in study. Before he attained 
the age of twenty-two, he had acquired a thorough 
knowledge of the Hebrew, Greek and Latin, Per- 
sian and Arabic tongues. He had also cultivated 
the polished languages of modern Europe, and his 
knowledge of the French was so perfect, that while 
he was a recluse student at the university, he trans- 
lated the history of Nadir Shaw from Persian into 
French, with such grammatical exactness, and ele- 



SIR WILLIAM JONES. 277 

gance of diction, as obtained the applause of the 
most judicious critics in France. 

About this time he published his " Commenta- 
ries on Asiatic Poetry." At the age of 24, he de- 
termined to attach himself to the profession of law, 
and with his studies in general jurisprudence, and 
the common law of England, united physical sci- 
ences, and pursued, with amazing rapidity, his re- 
searches into the literature of Asia. He published 
a number of ingenious essays in prose, and a vol- 
ume of poems, consisting chiefly of translations 
from Arabic, Persian and Turkish authors. The 
reputation of his genius and learning began to ex- 
tend itself, and his acquaintance to be sought by 
men of the first rank and literature. Through the 
friendship of Dr. Johnson and Sir Joshua Rey- 
nolds, he was introduced to the Literary Society, of 
which he continued a member, until his embarka- 
tion for India, in 1783, having been appointed one 
of the judges of the supreme court of Calcutta. 

After his arrival, and introduction to office, he 
proposed a plan for instituting a society " for the 
purpose of inquiring into the history, arts, sciences 
and literature of Asia." This proposal was patro- 
nized by Mr. Hastings, the governor general, and 
eagerly embraced by those gentlemen in Calcutta, 
who were best qualified to estimate its advantages, 
and to contribute to its support. Sir WiUiam Jones 
was elected perpetual president of this new formed 
society, and delivered his preliminary discourse in 
1784. The wide and fruitful region of Asiatic 
learning was now opened before him, while his 
high and independent station gave him a command- 
ing prospect of it, and furnished him full scope for 
23* 



278 BIOGRAPHy OF PIOUS PERSONS. 

the energy of a powerful mind. In the exercise of 
his profession, he administered to his fellow crea- 
tures the pure maxims of justice and of truth, and 
obeyed those laws which it was his business to en- 
force on others. 

He had long ardently desired to study the San- 
scrit language, and in three years made himself so 
completely master of it, that the most enlightened 
professors of the doctrine of Brahma, confessed 
with pride, delight and surprise, that his knowledge 
of their sacred dialect was most critically correct 
and profound. Their respect and attachment con- 
tinued to the last ; and the Pundits who were in the 
habit of attending him, felt the highest admiration of 
his superior talents and virtues, and uttered poig- 
nant lamentations at his death. He applied him- 
self to his studies with pertinacious and unwearied 
diUgence, and notwithstanding the great attention 
which his professional duties required, and the labor 
of preparing many learned discourses for the Asiatic 
Society, he found time to compose and pubUsh 
some curious and important works. The principal 
were an English version of the Sirajijah, or Maho- 
metan law of inheritance, with a commentary; the 
Institutes of Menu literally translated from the 
Sanscrit, with a learned preface, treating of the an- 
tiquity and value of the work, and an elegant trans- 
lation of the drama of Sancontala, from the same 
language. The first of these performances he 
printed at his own expense, and sold for the benefit 
of insolvent debtors ; an act of such disinterested 
benevolence, as ought to be transmitted to posterity. 
He had engaged in a copious digest of the Ma- 
hometan and Hindoo law, compiled from Arab and 



SIR WILLIAM JONES. 279 

Sanscrit originals : but the strong hand of death ar- 
rested the progress of the performance. In April, 
1794, he was attacked by a bilious complaint, which 
in a few weeks baffled the skill of the physicians. 
The last hour of his life was marked by a most sol- 
emn act of devotion. Finding his dissolution rap- 
idly approaching, he desired his attendants to carry 
him to an inner apartment, and leave him awhile to 
himself. Returning, after an interval, they found 
him in a kneeling attitude of prayer, with his hands 
clasped, and his eyes fixed towards heaven, and as 
they were removing him — he expired. 

The person of Sir William Jones was genteel 
and graceful ; his countenance, open, manly, viva- 
cious and serene. His deportment was dignified, 
yet easy : his address, courteous, yet plain : his 
manners, polished yet familiar. Hence, at first ac- 
quaintance, he not only excited the admiration, but 
acquired the esteem, of those with whom he con- 
versed. In conversation, he illustrated in a pleas- 
ing manner every topic which was discussed, and 
conveyed instruction with a modesty and elegance 
that captivated, while it enriched the mind. The 
placidity and gentleness for which he was distin- 
guished, did not proceed from constitutional tame- 
ness and languor, but from the union of tempe- 
rance and UberaUty, which virtuous habits had form- 
ed in his mind. He was sedate, moderate and 
cautious ; but at the same time animated, aspiring, 
and generous. He possessed a proud honor, an 
inflexible firmness, and a high sense of justice ; yet 
he had not in his disposition either haughtiness, 
obstinacy or austerity. His pride consisted in the 
love of independence ; his resolution, in shunning 
the temptations of vice ; his idea of equity, in pro- 



280 BIOGRAPHY OF PIOUS PERSONS. 

moting peace and happiness among men, by mak- 
ing the laws lovely rather than severe. 

He was no less estimable in public than in pri- 
vate life. Whether we consider his fine taste, the 
strength of his mental faculties, or the vast extent 
and variety of his acquirements, we are equally 
surprised by his talents. His intellectual powers 
were of the highest order. The clearness of his 
understanding no paradox could perplex ; the 
quickness of his perception ran through systems at 
a glance ; the solidity of his judgment, even his 
lively fancy could not warp ; and nothing useful 
or elegant escaped the retentive vigor of his memo- 
ry. To these properties, he added a fertile imagi- 
nation, a capacious comprehension, and an elasti- 
city of mind, which gave activity to all the opera- 
tions of genius. His mind, thus constituted, 
was enriched with the collective science and learn- 
ing of all times, ages, and nations ; and elevated 
by a piety, which gave lustre, dignity and consis- 
tency to the whole. 

Sir John Shore, in a discourse delivered before 
a convention of the Asiatic Society, soon after the 
melancholy event of his death, observes, — " I have 
already enumerated attainments and works, which, 
from their diversity and extent, seem far beyond the 
capacity of the most enlarged minds ; but the cata- 
logue may yet be augmented. To a proficiency in 
the languages of Greece, Rome and Asia, he add- 
ed the knowledge of the philosophy of those coun- 
tries, and of every thing curious and valuable in 
them. The doctrines of the Academy, and the Ly- 
ceum of the Portico, were not more familiar to him, 
than the tenets of the Vcdas, the mysticism of the 
Susis, or the religion of the ancient Persians ; and 



SIR WILLIAM JONES. 281 

while with a kindred genius, he pursued with rap- 
ture the heroic, lyric, or moral compositions of the 
most renowned poets of Greece, Rome and Asia, 
he could turn with equal deUght and knowledge to 
the sublime speculations, or mathematical calcula- 
tions, of Barrow and of Newton. With them also 
he professed his conviction of the truth of the 
Christian religion, and justly deemed it no incon- 
siderable advantage, that his researches had corro- 
borated the multiplied evidence of revelation, by 
confirming the Mosaic account of the primitive 
world." 

It may perhaps be acceptable to our readers to 
peruse an epitaph which this great and good man 
composed for himself some time previous to his 
death. 

" Here lie deposited 

The mortal remains of a man 

Who feared God, but not death ; 

And maintained independence, 

But soiiirht not riches : 

who thought 

None below him but the base and unjust : 

None above him but the wise and virtuous. 

Who loved 

His parents, kindred, friends, country, 

With an ardor, 

Which was the chief source of 

All his pleasures, and all his pains ; 

And who having devoted 

His life to the service and to 

The improvement of his mind, 

Resigned it calmly, 

Giving ulory to his < reator, 

Wishing peace on earth 

and 

Good will to all creatures, 

In the year of our blessed Redeemer, 

17a4." 



HON. SAMUEL OSGOOD. 



The Honorable Samuel Osgood, a native of An- 
dover, Massachusetts, was born on the 14th of Feb- 
ruary, 1748. His parents paid much 
1748. attention to the religious part of his ed- 
ucation, and so early and lasting were 
his impressions, that he cherished a hope of saving 
conversion at the age of 15. In youth he was ad- 
mitted a member of Harvard University, and ob- 
tained the reputation of a good general scholar. His 
most striking proficiency was in the Greek language, 
and the science of mathematics ; in the former he 
was acknowledged to be the first in his class, and, 
at his graduation, was chosen from the whole num- 
ber of candidates, to the honor of writing the math- 
ematical thesis. After exchanging the seclusion of 
study for the theatre of active UTe, he took an active 
and decided part in the difterences which arose be- 
tween this country and Great Britain. His talents, 
judgment and information were soon percieved and 
appreciated, and he was rapidly elevated to places 
of trust, and offices of dignity. He executed, to 
universal acceptance, the duties of Representative 
and Senator in his native State, member of the Gen- 
eral Congress, and fixst commissioner of the Treas- 
ury. 



HON. SAMUEL OSTGOOD. 283 

The penetrating, virtuous Washington, placed 
him in the department of Post Master General ; — 
the city of New York selected him as a member of 
their house of Representatives, and that legislative 
body invested him with the honors of Speaker. In 
1801, he has appointed Supervisor of the State of 
New York, and after the abolition of that office, was 
named as N aval Officer for the port of New York, 
a post in which he continued till death. The ab- 
sorbing duties of these important stations, and the 
full tide of honor that rapidly poured upon him, did 
not prevent the contemplation of the one thing need- 
ful, or destroy the sincere humility of the Christian. 
Looking back upon a life active and beneficent he 
would say with diffidence and contrition, " my his- 
tory for forty years, would contain but a gloomy ac- 
count of omissions of duty, and commissions of 
sin." He complained of lifelessness in the cause 
of his Redeemer, and the withdrawings of spir- 
itual comfort, though he still retained the hope of 
forgiveness and acceptance. 

Far from adopting that silence on religious sub- 
jects which too often characterizes the professors of 
the present day, he was forward to converse on the 
state and expectation of his soul. Though the 
church, of which he was an elder, was benefited by 
his labors, and by his prayers, and though the light 
of his course appeared to be that of the just, yet 
deeply distrustful of his merits, it was his supreme 
delight to cast himself upon Jesus Christ, as Jeho- 
vah his righteousness." The three last years of his 
life were marked with tranquillity, retirement and de- 
votion. Though naturally cheerful, and uncommon- 



284 BIOGRAPHY OF PIOUS PERSONS. 

ly affable in his manners, he was frequently con- 
templative, and sometimes pensive. 

His last illness was protracted and painful, but he 
bore it with undeviating resignation, aud with more 
than his usual portion of cheerfulness. The divin- 
ity and infinite power of Him who had undertaken 
for him, gave his mind much consolation. Re- 
clining on his dying pillow he said with deep solem- 
nity, " Bound as I am to eternity, I can rest on no- 
thing short of a Saviour, a Saviour who is iruhj 
God .?" Underneath him were the everlasting arms,^ 
and he calmly entered into his rest, on the 12th oC 
August, 1813, in the 66th year of his age. 

Not many who have basked in honor's smile, 
Not many who the paths of wealth have trod, 
Have turned their eyes from Earth's deceitful wile^ 
To seek the favor and the fear of God. 

Yet one there was — on whom the flowing stream 
Of ghttering wealth no proud delusion wrought ; 
Yes — one there was — who, bright with hunor's beam,, 
B jwed to the humble rule that Christ had taught. 

Gone now — a purer fount of bliss to f aste — 
Gone— to his last ineflable reward, 
For so we trust, that with an angel's haste 
He left this darkening earth and saw his Lord. 



ELIZA CUNNINGHAM. 



An account of this most amiable and interesting 

young person is given to the public, by the Rev. 

John Newton, whose niece she was, 

1771. and in whose family she spent the last 
years of her life. Suddenly bereaved 
of her excellent parents, and an only brother and 
sister whom she tenderly loved, the lonely orphan 
found the arms of her relatives open to receive her, 
and in their sympathy forgot, for a while, the an- 
guish of those sorrows which gloomed the morning 
of her life. In a languishing state of health, she 
journeyed from Scotland to England, to put herself 
under the protection of that kind uncle, to whom 
her dying mother had bequeathed her, and I know 
not how to express the interesting particulars of her 
short life so well, as by borrowing the words of her 
pious and affectionate biographer. 

" Wc received our dear Eliza, as a trust, and as 
a treasure, on the 15th of March, 1783, just as she 
had entered her 12th year. We were prepared to 
love her, before we saw her ; but she came into our 
hands like a heap of untold gold, which, when 
counted, proves a larger sum than was expected. 
Her person was agreeable. There was an ease 
and elegance in her whole address, and a graccful- 
24 



286 BIOGRAPHY OF PIOUS PERSONS. 

ness in her movements, until long illness and great 
weakness bowed down her frame. Her disposition 
was lively, her genius quick and inventive, and if 
she had enjoyed health, she would probably have 
excelled in every thing she attempted that required 
ingenuity. Her understanding, particularly her judg- 
ment, and sense of propriety, was far above her 
years, and there was something in her appearance 
which usually procured her favor at first sight. 

But her principal endearing qualities, which could 
be only fully known to us who hved with her, were 
the sweetness of her temper, and a heart formed 
for the exercise of affection, gratitude and friendship. 
I know not that either her aunt or I, ever saw a 
cloud upon her countenance during the whole time 
she was with us. It is true we did not, we could 
not, unnecessarily cross her ; but if we thought it 
expedient to overrule any proposal she made, she 
always acquiesced with a sweet smile, and we were 
sure we should never hear of that proposal again. Her 
delicacy, however, was quicker than our observation, 
and she would sometimes say, when we could not 
perceive the least reason for it, — ' I am afraid I an- 
swered you peevishly. Indeed, I did not intend it. 
If I did, I ask your pardon. I should be very un- 
grateful if I thought any pleasure equal to that of 
endeavoring to please you ?" It is no wonder that 
we dearly loved such a child. 

The hectic fever, cough, and sweats, which Eliza 
brought with her from Scotland, were subdued in 
the course of the summer, and there appeared no 
reason to apprehend immediate danger. But stjil 
there was a worm preying at the root of this beauti- 
ful gourd. 8hu had seldom any pain till within the 



EUZA CUNNINGHAM. 287 

last fortnight of her life, and usually slept well, but 
when awake was always ill. I believe she knew 
not a single hour of perfect ease, and they who in- 
timately knew her state, could not but wonder to see 
her so placid, cheerful and attentive in company, as 
she generally was. Many a time when the tears 
have stolen silently down her cheeks, if she saw that 
her aunt or I observed them, she would wipe them 
away, come to us with a smile and a kiss, and say, 
♦ Do not be uneasy, I am not very ill — I can bear it, 
and shall be better presently.' Her case was thought 
beyond the reach of medicine, and for a time no 
medicine was used. She had air and exercise, as 
the weather and circumstances would permit, and 
the rest of the time amused herself as well as she 
could with her guitar, or harpsichord, her book, or 
her needle. She had a part, likewise, when able, 
in such visits as we paid or received, and these were 
generally regulated by a regard to what she could 
bear. Her aunt, especially, seldom went abroad, 
but at such times, and to such places, as we thought 
agreeable and convenient to her. For we perceiv- 
ed that she loved home best, and best of all when 
we were at home with her. 

In April, 1784, we put her under the care of my 
dear friend. Dr. Benamor. To the divine blessing 
on his skill and endeavors, I ascribe the pleasure 
of having her continued with us so long. She is 
now gone, and can no more repeat what she has 
often spoken of— the great comfort it was to her, 
to have so affectionate and sympathizing a physi- 
cian ; — but while I hve, I hope it will always be my 
pleasure to express my gratitude for his unwearied 
attention, and for his great tenderness. But what 



288 BIOGRAPHY OF PIOUS PERSONS. 

can the most efficacious medicines, or the best phy- 
sicians avail to prolong life, when the hour approach- 
es in which the prayer of the Great Intercessor 
must be accomplished — "Father, I will, that they 
whom thou hast given me, may be with me where I 
am, to behold my glory." — This was the proper 
cause of my dear Eliza's death. The Lord sent 
her to me to be brought up for him, owned my poor 
endeavors, and when her education was completed, 
took her home to himself. He has richly paid me 
my wages, in the employment itself, and in the hap- 
py issue. 

She was advised by her physicians to make trial of 
the salt water, and we passed a month with her at 
Southampton and at Lymington. The bathing was 
evidently useful in giving some additional strength 
to her very weak and relaxed frame, and we were 
thus encouraged to repeat our visit the ensuing au- 
tumn. But though she bathed a few times she could 
not persevere, and when she returned, she entered 
our door for the last time, for she went out no more, 
till she was carried out to be put into her hearse. 
We have now come to the last three weeks of her 
pilgrimage — the most important and interesting peri- 
od of her short life. Her excellent parents had 
conscientiously endeavored to bring her up in the 
nurture and admonition of the Lord, and the princi- 
ples of religion had been instilled into her from her 
infancy. Their labors were so far attended with 
success, that no child could be more obedient or 
obliging, or more remote from evil habits and dis- 
positions ; but I could not perceive, when she first 
came to us, that she had any heart affecting sense 
of divine things. Bu( being under my roof, she of 



BLIZA CUNNINGHAM. 289 

course attended my ministry, when her health would 
permit, and was usually present when I prayed and 
expounded the Scriptures, morning and evening, in 
my family. Friends and ministers were likewise 
frequently with us, whose character and conversa- 
tion were well suited to engage her notice, and to 
help her to form a right idea of the Christian prin- 
ciples and temper. 

Knowing that she was of a thinking turn, I left 
her to make her own reflections upon what she saw 
and heard, committing her to the Lord, from whom 
I had received her, and entreating him to be her ef- 
fectual teacher. When I did attempt to talk with 
her upon the concerns of her soul, she could give 
me no answer but with tears. But I soon had great 
encouragement to hope that the Lord had enlight- 
ened her understanding, and had drawn the desires 
of her heart to himself. Great was her delight in 
the ordinances ; — exemplary her attention to preach- 
ing ; and to be debarred from going to hear at our 
stated times, was a trial which, though she patiently 
bore, seemed to affect her more than any other, and 
she did not greatly care what she suffered in the 
week, provided she was able to attend the worship 
on the Sabbath. 

The judicious observations she occasionally made 
upon what had passed in conversation, upon inci- 
dents, books, and sermons, indicated a sound judg- 
ment, and a spiritual taste. And my hope was con- 
firmed by her whole deportment, which was becom- 
ing the gospel of Christ. So that had she died sud- 
denly, on any day of the last 18 months of her life, 
I should have had no doubt of her eternal felicity. 
But I could seldom prevail with her to speak of 
24* 



290 BIOGRAPHY OF PIOUS PERSONS. 

herself; if she did it was with the utmost caution 
and diffidence. Soon after her last return from 
Southampton, she became acquainted witii acute 
pain. Her gentle spirit which had borne up under 
long and languishing illness, sunk under this an- 
guish, and though it occasioned no impatience or 
repining, it rapidly destroyed her frame. On Fri- 
day, the 30th of September, she was down stairs 
for the last time, and then she was brought down 
and carried up in our arms. It now became very 
desirable to hear from herself a more explicit ac- 
count of the hope that was in her ; especially, as 
upon some symptoms of approaching mortification, 
she appeared to be a httlc alarmed, and, of course, 
not thoroughly reconciled to the thoughts of death. 
Her aunt waited for the first convenient opportunity 
of intimating to her that the time of her departure 
was probably at hand. 

The next morning presented one. She found 
herself remarkably better, her pains were almost 
gone, her spirits revived, the favorable change was 
visible in her countenance. Her aunt began to 
break the subject to her, by saying, ' My dear, were 
you not extremely ill last night?' • Indeed I was.' 
' Had you not been relieved I think you could not 
have continued long.' ' I believe I could not.' 
' My dear, I have been very anxiously concerned 
for your Ufe.' ' But I hope, my dear aunt, you are 
not so now. My views of things have been for 
some time very different from what they were when 
I came to you. I have seen and felt the vanity of 
childhood and youth.' Her aunt said, ' 1 believe 
you have long made a conscience of secret prayer.' 
She answered, ' Yes, I have long and earnestly 



ELIZA CUNNINGHAM. 291 

Bought the Lord with reference to the change which 
is now approaching. I have not yet that full assur- 
ance which is so desirable, but I have a hope, I trust 
a good hope, and I believe the Lord will give me 
whatever he sees necessary for me, before he takes 
me hence. I have prayed to him to fit me for him- 
self, and then whether sooner or later, it signifies 
but little.' 

Here was a comtor^able point gained. We were 
satisfied that she had given up all expectation of 
living, and could spt>ak of her departure without 
being distressed. But her apparent revival was of 
short duration. In the evening of the same day, 
she began to complain of a sore throat, which be- 
came worse, and before the noon of the next day, 
threatened an absolute suffocation. When Dr. Be- 
namor, who the day before had almost entertained 
hopes of her recovery, found her so suddenly, and 
so greatly altered, he could not, at the moment, 
prevent some signs of his deep concern from ap- 
pearing in his countenance. She quickly perceived 
it, and desired he would plainly tell her his senti- 
ments. When he had recovered himself, he said, 
' You are not so well as when I saw you on Satur- 
day.' She answered, ' I trust all will be well soon.' 
He replied, that whether she lived or died, it would 
be well, and to the glory of God. 

He told me that he had much pleasing conversation 
with her that morning, some particulars of which 
he committed to writing, but had lost the paper. 
From that time she may be said to have been 
dying, as we expected her departure from one 
hour to another. On Monday, she was in great 



292 BIOGRAPHY OF PIOUS PERSONS. 

pain, sometimes in agonies, unable to remain many 
minutes in the same position. 

But her mind was peaceful, she possessed a spirit 
of recollection and prayer, and her chief attention 
to earthly things seemed confined to the concern 
she saw in those who were around her. That 
she might not increase their feelings for her, she 
strove to conceal the sense of her own suffer- 
ings. 

About nine the next morning, we all thought her 
dying, and waited near two hours by her bed-side 
for her last breath. She was much convulsed, and 
in great agonies. I said — ' My dear, you are going 
to heaven, and I hope, by the grace of God, we in 
due time shall follow you.' — She could not speak, 
but let us know that she attended to what I said, by 
a gentle inclination of the head, and a sweet smile. 
I repeated to her many passages of Scripture, and 
verses of hymns, to each of which she made the 
same kind of answer. Though silent, her looks 
were more expressive than words. Towards eleven 
o'clock, a great quantity of coagulated phlegm, 
which she had not strength to raise, made her rattle 
violently in the throat, which we considered as a 
sign that death was at hand : and as she seemed 
unwilling to take something that was offered her, we 
forbore to disturb her in whnt we supposed her 
last moments. But our beloved physician, coming 
in, observed that she was not near death by her 
pulse, and desired that something might be given 
her. A tea-spoonful or two of some liquid cleared 
the passage, and she revived, but her pain was 
extreme, and her disappointment great. I never 
saw her so near impatience, as upon this occasion. 



ELIZA CUNNINGHAM. 293 

As soon as she could speak, she cried out — ' Oh 
cruel ! — cruel to recall me, when I was so happy, 
and so near gone ! I wish you had not come. I 
long to go home.' 

But in a few moments she grew composed, as- 
sented to what the doctor said of her duly to wait 
the Lord's time ; and from that hour, though her 
desires to depart and to be with her Saviour were 
stronger and stronger, she cheerliiUy took whatever 
was ofTered her, and frequently asked for something 
of her own accord. How often, if we were to 
have choice, should we counteract our own prayers ! 
I had entreated the Lord to prolong her life, till she 
could leave an indisputable testimony behind her, 
for our comfort. Yet when I saw her agony, and 
heard her cry — ' Oh ! how cruel to stop me' — I was 
for a moment almost of her mind, and could hardly 
help wishing that the doctor had delayed his visit a 
little longer. But if she had died then we should 
have been deprived of what we saw and heard the 
two following days, the remembrance of which is 
unspeakably precious to me. When Dr. Benamor 
came on Wednesday, she entreated him to tell her 
how long he thought she might live. He said — 
' Are you in earnest, my dear? — She answered, — 
'Indeed I am.' At that time there were strong 
symptoms of mortification, and he told her that she 
might hold out till eight in the evening, but he did 
not expect she could survive till midnight. 

On hearing this, low as she was, her eyes seemed 
to sparkle with their former vivacity, and fixing them 
on him with an air of inefiable satisfaction she said, 
♦ Oh that is good news indeed.' And she repeated 
it as such to a person who came soon after into the 



294 BIOGRAPHY OF FIOUS PERSONS. 

room, and said with lively emotions of joy, " The 
doctor tells me, I shall stay here but a few hours 
more.' In the afternoon she noticed and counted 
the clock every time it struck, and when it struck 
seven, she said — ' another hour — and then — .' But 
it pleased God to spare her to us another day. She 
suffered much in the course of Wednesday night, 
but was quite resigned and patient. Our kind 
servants, who from love to her and us, watched her 
night and day, with a solicitude and tenderness 
which wealth is too poor to purchase, were witnesses 
of the affectionate and grateful manner in which she 
repeatedly thanked them for their services and 
attentions to her. Though such an acknowledgment 
was no more than their due, yet coming from her- 
self, and at such a time, they highly valued it. She 
added her earnest prayers that the Lord would 
reward them. To her prayers, my heart says, amen. 
May they be comforted of God in their dying 
moments, as she was, and meet with equal kindness 
from those who surround them. 

I was surprised on Thursday morning, to find her 
not only alive, but in some respects better. The 
tokens of. mortification again disappeared. This 
was her last day, and a memorable day to us. 
When Dr. Benamor asked her how she was, she an- 
swered — ' Truly happy, and if this is dying, it is a 
pleasant thing to die.' She said to me about ten 
o'clock — ' My dear uncle, I would not change con- 
ditions with any person on earth. Oh ! how gracious 
is the Lord to me. Oh what a change is before 
me.' She was sometimes asked if she could wish 
to live, provided God should restore her to perfect 
health ; her answer was, ' Not for all the world ;" 



ELIZA CUNNINGHAM. 295 

and sometimes, — ' Not for a thousand worlds,' — 
but the last time she was asked the question, she 
said — 'I desire to have no choice.' — She would 
often say, 'Do not weep for me, my dear aunt, but 
rather rejoice and praise on my account. I shall 
now have the advantage of dear Miss Patty Barham 
— (a beloved friend who had long been in a languish- 
ing state) — for I shall go before her.' — We asked her 
if she would choose a text for her own funeral 
sermon — she readily mentioned — Whom the Lord 
lovelh he cliasleneth — ' That,' said she, ' has been my 
experience ; my afflictions have been many, but not 
one too many ; nor has the greatest of them been 
too great — I praise him for them all.' — But after a 
pause, she said, — ' Stay, I tliink there is another 
text, which may do better ; let it be — Blessed are 
llie dead, wlw die in the Lord. — That is n)y experi- 
ence now.' — She then chose a hymn to be sung 
atlcr the sermon ; — the 72d of the second book of 
Olney Hymns. 

But I must check myself, and set down only a 
small part of the gracious words which the Lord 
enabled her to speak in the course of the day, 
though she was frequently interrupted by pains and 
agonies. She had something to say, either in the 
way of admonition or consolation, as she thought 
most suitable, to every one whom she saw. To 
her most constant attendant she said, " Be sure to 
call upon tlie Lord, and if you think he does not 
hear you now, he will at last, as he has heard me." 
She spoke a great deal to an intimate friend, who 
was with her every day, which I hope she will long 
remember, as the testimony of her dying Eliza. 
Amongst other things she said, ' See how comfor- 



296 BIOGRAPHY OF PIOUS PERSONS. 

table the Lord can make a dying bed. Do you 
think you shall have an assurance when you come 
to die V Bemg answered ' 1 hope so, my dear,' 
she replied, ' But do you earnestly, and with all 
your heart pray to the Lord for it t If you seek 
him, you shall surely find him.' She then prayed 
affectionately and fervently for her friend, after- 
wards for her cousin, and then for another of our 
family who was present. Her prayer was not 
long, but her every word was weighty, and her 
manner very affecting ; the purport was, that they 
might all be taught and comforted by the Lord. 

About five in the afternoon she desired me to 
pray with her once more. Surely I then prayed 
from my heart. When I had finished, she pronoun- 
ced. Amen. I said, ' My dear child, have I ex- 
pressed your meaning V She answered, ' Oh ! 
yes ;' and then added, ' I am ready to say, why 
are his chariot ^vheels so long in coming '( But I 
hope he will enable me to wait his hour with patience.* 
These were the last words that I heard her speak. 
Mrs. Newton's heart was much, perhaps too much, 
attached to this dear child, which is not to be won- 
dered at, when we consider what a child she was, 
how we received her, and what we saw her suffer. 
But her Master graciously supported her in this try- 
ing season. Indeed there was much more cause 
for joy than grief ; yet the pain of separation must 
be felt. Eliza well knew her feelings, and a con- 
cern for her was, I believe, the last anxiety that 
remained with her. She said to those about her, 
' Try to persuade my aunt to leave the room ; I 
think I shall soon go to sleep. I shall not remain 
with you till morning.' Her aunt, however, was 



t 

ELIZA CUNNINGHAM. 297 

the last person who heard her speak, and was sitting 
by her bed when she went away. 

A Utile past six, hearing that a relation who 
dearly loved her, and was beloved by her, and who 
had come daily from Westminster to see her, was 
below stairs, she said, ' Raise me up, that I may 
speak to him once more.' Her aunt said, ♦ My 
dear, you are nearly exhausted, 1 think you had 
better not attempt it.' She smiled, and said, ' It is 
very well ; I will not' She was then within half 
an hour of her translation to glory, but the love of 
her dear Lord had so filled her with benevolence, 
that she was ready to exert even her last breath, 
in hopes of saying something that might be useful 
to others, after she was gone. 

Towards seven o'clock, I was walking in my 
garden, earnestly engaged in prayer for her, when 
a servant came to me, and said, *jS^e is gone.* ' 

Lord ! how great is thy power ! how great is 
thy goodness. A few days before, had it been 
practicable and lawful, what would I not have given 
to |)rocure her recovery ? yet seldom ui njy life have 

1 known a more heartfelt joy, than when these 
words, " ahe is gone," sounded in my ears. I ran 
up stairs, and our whole little family were soon 
aroiuid her bed. Though her aunt and another 
person were sitting with their eyes fixed upon her, 
she was gone a few minutes before she was missed. 
She lay upon her lelt side, with her cheek gently 
reclining upon her hand, as if in a sweet sleep ; 
and I thought there was a smile upon her counte- 
jKUitx . Nevci surely did death appear in a more 

25 



298 BIOGRAPHY OF PIOUS PERSONS. 

beautiful, and more inviting form. We fell upon our 
knees, and I returned, I think I may say, my most 
unfeigned thanks to our God and Saviour for his 
abundant goodness to her, crowned in this last in- 
stance by giving her so gentle a dismission. Yes, I 
ara satisfied. I am comforted. And if one of the 
many involuntary tears I have shed could recall her 
to Hfe, health, and an assemblage of all that this 
world calls happiness, I would labor hard to suppress 
it. Now my largest desires for her arc accom- 
plished. The days of her mourning are ended. 
She is landed on that peacefid shore, where the 
storms of trouble never blow. She is forever out 
of the reach of sorrow, temptation and sin. Now 
she is before the throne! She sees him whom 
having not seen she loved ; — she drinks of the rivers 
of pleasure that flow at his right hand, and shall 
thirst no more. She was born February 6th, 1771, 
and died October 6th, 1785 aged 14 years and 8 
months. 

A child under the age of fifteen, did thus rejoice 
in the midst of pains and agonies. She was wil- 
ling to leave all her friends whom sIks loveil, and 
by whom she was tenderly beloved, for she knew 
in whom she believed, and that when she should be 
absent from the body she should be present with 
the Lord. She triumphed in the hope of glory, and 
smiled upon the approach of death. It may be 
presumed that whoever seriously considers lliis case, 
will not be able to satisfy himself, by ascribing such 
remarkable effects in so young a subject, to the 
power of habit, example or system. II' he does 



ELIZA CUNNINGHAM. 299 

not account for them on the principles of the gos- 
pel, he will be unable to assign any proportionable 
cause. And it is to be feared, that if he is not 
affected by a testimony so simple and so striking, 
neither would he be persuaded thoiigh one should 
rise from the dead." 



JOSHUA ROWLEY GILPIBf. 



I ATTEMPT to abridge for you, my ybung friends, 
a little work entitled, " A monument of Parental 

Affection, to a dear and only son ;" and 1 
1788. regret that my limited time, and narrow 

bounds, compel me to compress or to 
leave out any part of what is so excellent. The 
character is so admirable, that it must excite strong 
desire of imitation in every reflecting mind ; while 
the sorrows of a father lamenting (he loss of an 
only child, and bending over the tomb which has 
swallowed up all his earthly hopes, must excite the 
commiseration of every susceptible heart, and draw 
a tear from every eye which confesses the claims of 
sympathy and compassion. 

Joshua Rowley Gilpin, the only son of the Rev. 
J. Gilpin, pastor of Wreck ward ine, in the county of 
Salop, England, was born Jan. 30, 1788. In infan- 
cy, when the internal texture slowly yet truly disco- 
vers itself, he displayed a remarkably mild and pa- 
tient disposition, and showed no propensity to anger 
when what ho loved most was withheld. This dis- 
position, which promised to those around him, as 
well as to himself, much comfort, seemed to acquire 
additional strength with his years ; and it is suppos- 
ed that there never existed a youth less subject to 



JOSHUA ROWLEY GILPIN. 301 

petulance or passion, or who could meet the una- 
voidable vexations of life with a greater degree of 
calmness and tranquillity. His father undertook 
the sole care of his education, and found the em- 
ployment a source of perpetual delight. 

So gentle, so docile, so industrious was his young 
pupil, that he never had occasion to direct to him a 
single expression of displeasure, and throughout 
the whole course of his life no correction was nec- 
essary, and no instrument of chastisement was ever 
seen in the house. His first perceivable inclination 
was for drawing, in which he engaged when almost 
an infant ; and though his first attempts were rude, 
he soon began to surprise his friends with the bold- 
ness of his designs, and accuracy of his execution. 
While engaged in this favorite amusement, a dis- 
sected alphabet was placed before him, and his de- 
sire was so great to furnish his drawings with suita- 
ble titles, that he soon made himself master of it. 

Now a new field of pleasure was opened for him 
to range in, and from the productions of the pencil 
his mind was turned to the various arrangements 
and combinations of these lettets ; so that at an 
age when many children have scarcely learned their 
names, he was forming them into short sentences, 
not only of a playful, but of a devotional cast. 
This not only ascertained the growth of his intel- 
lectual powers, but gave satisfactory assurance to 
his pious and affectionate parents, that even then 
his young heart was forming a happy acquaintance 
with divine things. As the higher branches of 
knowledge allured him, he devoted himself anxious- 
ly to their acquisition. He was cheerfully prepared 
for every necessary exercise, and always inclined to 
25* 



302 BIOGRAPHY OF PIOUS PERSONS. 

exceed rather than fall short of his appointed task. 
He complained of no difficulty, he wanted no help ; 
he considered the little labors of every day as a rea- 
sonable service, and readily on every occasion sub- 
mitted his will to that of his father. During his 
studies his sweet and placid disposition was con- 
stantly displaying itself. While a child he had be- 
come familiarly acquainted with the rudiments of 
the Latin tongue, ;uid by many fair words persuaded 
his nurse (a very worthy young woman who attend- 
ed him from his infancy) to become his scholar. 
Such pleasure did he derive from his studies, that 
he left no means untried to engage her attention, 
and would often set before her the honorable dis- 
tinction of excelling in knowledge all the young 
women in her parish. He drew up for her an 
abridgment of his Grammar, to which he added a 
short vocabulary ; and was never without a few 
slips of paper in his pocket on which was some 
noun regularly declined, for her benefit. If the 
day had failed to afford her sufficient time to attend 
his lessons, he redoubled his assiduity when she 
conducted him ty his chamber at night, and was 
never contented without hearing her repeat the 
Lord's prayer in Greek. This, while it exemplified 
the sweetness of his temper, showed that he loved 
those parts of learning which young students are 
apt to think tedious and disgusting, and that his mind 
had early put away childish things. 

While he was thus anxiously pursuing improve- 
ment, his father showed him one evening a treatise on 
Arithmetic, resolving to observe how it might suit 
his inclinations. He went immediately to work on 
this untried ground, and so great was his satisfac- 



JOSHUA ROW LET GILPIN. 303 

lion that he begged that he might he allowed to have 
the same exercise again, whenever he should feel at 
a loss for amusement. For three weeks it formed 
part of his evening entertainment, and in that short 
space he became so expert an arithmetician as to 
consider the extraction of the square or cube rooU 
nothing but mere diversion. His father now thought 
fit to withdraw him from the science of numbers, 
lest it should interfere too much with his classical 
studies ; yet he still continued to surprise him with 
his abstruse numerical speculations. And when 
allerwards he was suflered to pursue Mathematics, 
Algebra and Geometry, he acquired without the help 
of a master, surprising proficiency in those sciences. 
The difiicult problems of Euclid aflTorded him the 
highest delight ; he would willingly have employed 
his days and nights with them, and no youth was 
ever more entertained with perusing a fairy tale, 
than he with solving, applying and repeating every 
proposition in its order. 

Under the tuition of his father, he went regularly 
through the authors which are used in public semi- 
naries, and that with a degree of attention very un- 
usual in those places. His memory was so durably 
retentive, that what he once read he never forgot, 
and could always repeat, or turn to any required 
passage, whether found in the writings of poets, 
historians, or divines. His accuracy was admira- 
ble; he was penetrating to discover errors, and 
careful to avoid them. lie would never pass over 
a sentence till he had obtained a satisfactory view of 
its meaning ; or lay aside an author till he had 
formed a critical acquaintance both with his style 
and sentiments. In diligence he was never exceed- 



304 BIOGRAPHY OF PIOUS PERSONS. 

ed ; employment was the delight of his life, and 
whatsoever his hand found to do, he did it with his 
might. His soul thirsted for knowledge, and no 
occasional difficulty could abate its desire or retard 
its progress. In cases of perplexity, so far was he 
from soliciting assistance, that he modestly declined 
it when offered, and through the whole course of 
his studies, it was never necessary to stimulate his 
progress. 

His love of order was not less singular than his 
diligence. From his earliest childhood he discov- 
ered an uncommon attention to method in all his 
little undertakings, and this disposition gradually 
acquired strength, as he became better acquainted 
with the importance of time. To his labors and 
recreations he assigned their proper place and sea- 
son, contriving to till up the day with an agreeable 
variety, preserving himself on the one hand from 
listlessness and aj)athy, on the other from perplexity 
and precipitation. Ilad he foreseen the predeter- 
mined limits of his short life he could not have or- 
dered it more wisely or happily for himself, or for 
his parents, since every period of it was marked 
with punctuality and enjoyment, industry and ease, 
moderation and composure. A clear and acute 
understanding might with propriety be called his 
distinguishing faculty, for he possessed it in an un- 
common degree of perfection. It was not his cus- 
tom to glide smoothly over the surface of things ; 
nor had he any taste for that light kind of reading 
which so generally attracts the minds of young 
people. He dehghted in mose exercises of the 
mind which they usually consider laborious ; having 
once fixed his attention upon a subject, nothing 



JOSHUA ROWLEY GILPIN. 305 

could allure him from it until he had searched it 
thoroughly ; and to deal with some subtle questions, 
or try his strength on some difficult point, afforded 
him the highest gratification. 

The attention of his parents was not however 
confined to his literary attainments ; but it was their 
endeavor and prayer that he might blend with it, the 
wisdom that is from above. They were anxious 
that he should not be unfurnished for the regular 
and honorable discharge of his duties in the present 
world, but were still more solicitous to educate him 
as a candidate for glory, honor and immortality, 
in the world to come. Feeling as if a failure in 
this would have blasted all their fondest hopes, they 
began this important work at a very early age, with 
the greatest simplicity, condescension and caution, 
lest they should produce disgust, where they wished 
to excite desire. From the beauties of Creation 
they tenderly led his mind to the wonders of Provi- 
dence ; from the goodness of God to the unwor- 
thiness of man ; from the depravity of human na- 
ture to the redemption that is in Christ Jesus ; from 
this transient state of being to that eternal world, 
in which imperfection and infelicity shall have no 
place. They accompanied these discourses with 
none of that formality and rigor which some falsely 
attach to religion. — " I will show you, my dear son," 
said his father, with a smiling countenance, " a way 
that will lead you from earth to heaven." His gen- 
tle pupil listened with eager attention, and the in- 
stniction was crowned with more than ordinary 
success. His mmd seemed to be solemnized, yet 
filled with every joyful and grateful sensation, and 
like the child Samuel he was early awakened and 



306 BIOGRAPHY OF PIOUS PERSONS. 

purified. At his first introduction to the house of 
God, which took place at a very early age, he dis- 
covered such a degree of reverential awe as had 
scarcely ever been witnessed before ; and ever af- 
ter in his stated appearance there, whether he lis- 
tened to the sacred word, or bowed before the altar, 
his whole carriage was marked with the most unaf- 
fected decorum and piety. Oh! think not, my 
dear young friends, that he then embraced anything 
gloomy, rigorous, or unnecessary ; he made choice 
of what was to increase his talents, to refine his en- 
joyments, to fortify his mind against -the allurements 
and sorrows of time, and to prepare his soul to re- 
turn to the hand of its Maker, after a short and hap- 
py visit to mortality. 

I borrow the words of his father to describe to 
you the happy manner in which their Sabbaths were 
mutually spent. " Unrestrained by the presence of 
witnesses, we gave on that day an unlimited indul- 
gence to our atfectionate and devotional feelings. 
We conversed as parts of the same family ; we 
congratulated each other as members of the Christian 
church ; we rejoiced over one another as heirs of 
the same glorious promises. Some interesting 
passage of Scripture, or some choice piece of divi- 
nity, generally fiirnished the matter of our discourse, 
and while we endeavored to obtain a clear and 
comprehensive view of the subject before us, a 
divine light would sometimes break in upon us, 
satisfying our doubts, exalting our conceptions, and 
cheering our hearts. We have then with one con- 
sent laid aside our book that we might uninterruptedly 
admiro the beauties, and enjoy the sweets of the open- 
ing prospect. While thus solacing ourselves with a 



JOSHUA ROWLEY GILPIN. 307 

view of our future onjoymcnts, and the place of our 
final destination, we have solemnly renewed our 
vows, resolving, for the joy that was set before us, to 
endure the cross, despising the shame, in humble 
imitation of our adorable Master. In such a frame 
of mind we found it possible to speak of probable 
sufferings, and painful separations, with the utmost 
composure. And with such a termination of our 
course in sight, we could cheerfully leave all the 
casualties of that course to the Divine disposal ; 
fully persuaded that whatever evd might befal us by 
the way, an abundant compensation would be mado 
for all on our su-riviil at home." 

The sedentary habits, and intense application of 
the young student, it was feared by his father would 
injure the delicacy of his health, and he endeavored 
to draw him more fre(iucntly from his beloved books. 
But his inclinations led him so strongly to such 
pursuits, that the amusements and recreations of 
youth had for him no charm, and he would silently 
retire from them to seclude himself in his study. 
His parents still trembhng at the feebleness and 
delicacy of his appearance, were advised to place 
him in a public school, where perhaps the novelty 
of the scene might for awhile divert his mind from 
too intense study, and more atliletic exercises 
strengthen the fibres of his frame. 

They acquiesced in the propriety of this advice, 
but the idea of parting was so insupportable, that 
they removed their family to Newport, and placed 
him at the excellent seminary of the Rev. Joseph 
Scott. Here he was introduced to a scene replete 
with novelty ; ho had often heard of a school, but 
had never seen one, and great was his astonishiuent 



308 BIOGRAPHY OF PIOUS PERSONS. 

to find idleness, irregularity and ignorance, where 
he expected only to find industry, order and intelli- 
gence. The customary exercises of the academy 
were performed by him with such perfect ease, that 
his attendance was required scarcely five hours in 
the day, " and thus," says his affectionate father, 
*' we were allowed to spend the greatest part of our 
time together. Twice in the day we parted, not 
without a momentary feeling of regret, and twice 
we met each other with unfeigned pleasure, as 
dearest friends are accustomed to meet after a 
tedious separation. 

Though he had many seniors among his com- 
panions he rapidly rose to the highest seat in the 
school, a place of which he was by no means 
ambitious, and which he occupied with the utmost 
modesty and condescension. His affability and 
gentleness conciliated the minds and repressed the 
eiwy of his school-fellows, but between his habits 
and theirs the difference was so great, that he could 
form no familiar connection with any of them. In 
the head master of this seminary he found an atten- 
tive instiuctor, and a familiar iVicnd. I>y him the 
young student's talents were di::itinguished with the 
strongest marks of esteem, and he never spoke of 
hun but in the must endearing terms, calling him 
" the pride of his school and the jtriJe of his 
heart." 

The return of this amiable family to then- beloved 
village was a time of unspeakable enjoyment. 
Their allectionate people wailed to welcome them ; — 
the sight of their habitation renewed (he memory of 
former joy.s, and he on wliose accotuit they had 
departed, gazed witli unutterubl*. emotion on the 



JOSHUA ROWLEY GILPIN. 309 

spot of his nativity. Its trees, its cottages, the very 
rock on which it stood, were associated with the 
recollection of unininglcd enjoyments ; every room 
in his dwelling, every shrub in his garden, every 
field in his extensive prospect ; even the distant 
hills behind which he had been accustomed to watch 
the setting sun, seemed to say — welcome — welcome 
to the youth who from more splendid scenes — scenes 
where he has been honored and caressed, returns 
■cheerfully to us. 

" How promising are your prospects in life," said 
^ friend, " how reasonably may you look forward to 
ihe most satisfactory events." But with ineffable 
modesty and sweetness he answered, " I look for- 
ward to no future event whatever with any degree of 
•desire, perfectly assured that no possible change in 
my aftairs can make any addition to my present hap- 
piness." Not even the gaieties and amusements of 
London could iifi'ect the inclinations of this incom- 
parable youth, who after spending two months there, 
at the giddy age of 16, returned to his native vil- 
lage with the same delight — the same unassuming 
manners — the same purity of taste. As they en- 
tered the secluded spot where all their real enjoy- 
ments centered, he presented his father with a copy 
of Latin verses, expressive of his feelings, which at 
the request ol' his mother weie thus triuislated. 

" Livis llicrf a yoiitli wlio far from homo 
Tliroii^'li novel scenes exults to roam I 
Tlien let tlie restless vuunml go 
And iilly pass from show to show ; 
NVliile ill my native villiigo blest, 
Deli<!;liicd still, and still al rest, 
Without disturbance or alloy, 
Life's purest pleasuresi I enjoy " 
2G 



310 BIOGRAPHY OF PIOUS PERSONS. 

Every spot to this amiable youth was sweet, be- 
cause he bore in his bosom the source of all true 
pleasure — unaftected goodness — active virtue — and 
an hope of the favor of Gcd. But while he was 
rapidly preparing for the sacred employment to which 
he was destined, increasing in wisdom and stature, 
and in favor with God and man, a secret arrow 
from an unerring hand pierced him, commissioned 
to wound, and eventually to destroy. In the month 
of April, 1804, he was suddenly attacked by a dis- 
charge of blood from the lungs, which was repeated 
until he was reduced to a surprising degree of de- 
bility. " We considered this," writes his father, " as 
a solemn warning from above ; and while we dis- 
covered in it the absolute uncertainty of our dearest 
earthly enjoyments, we earnestly prayed for a grow- 
ing submission to the divine will. 

In the mean time it afforded us unspeakable com- 
fort to mark the composure of our suffering child, 
who ' as a sheep before his shearers opened not 
his mouth, neither despised the chastening of the 
Lord, or fainted under his rebuke,' but lying as 
clay in the hand of the potter, meekly submitted 
himself to the disposal of a fiiithful Creator." But 
the medicines prescribed seemed to have a benefi- 
cial effect upon him, and a journey through a beau- 
tiful part of Wales, and several weeks residence 
among its delightful scenes, together with the purity 
of its air, and tlie mild salubrity of the season, seem- 
ed to restore again the health of the beloved object. 
As they returned home with the reviNing invalid, all 
Nature appeared to them particijumt in their joy ; — 
to use the animated language of his father, " the 
mountains and hills seemed around us to break forth 



JOSHUA ROWLEY GILPIN. 311 

into singing, and all the trees of the field to clap 
their hands. We renewed our vows at every stage, 
we freely indulged our grateful feelings at home, 
where we reared an altar to the God of all comfort, 
who had been mindful of us in our low estate, gra- 
ciously prospered our way, and brought us again in 
peace to our own habitation." 

During this interval of returning vigor, he formed 
many plans of improvement, and acquired much 
useful information. He was incessantly occupied, 
and all his occupations invariably tended either to 
increase his own knowledge, or to advance the hap- 
piness of his family. Through a great part of the 
day he was a silent and separate student ; at stated 
periods he related to his father what he had explor- 
ed alone ; and occasionally associated with both 
his parents with the most marked satisfaction, and 
cheerful discourse. Their evenings were spent in 
the reciprocal enjoyment of the highest domestic 
pleasures. Their customary exercises began with 
music, sometimes of the most delicate and compli- 
cated kind ; were continued with reading and con- 
versing alternately on the best works, historical or 
poetical, philosophical, moral or religious ; and clo- 
sed with the lifting up of the heart and voice in 
grateful prayer to the bountiful Giver of all good. 

In May he again resumed his studies at Newport, 
where he continued till the midsummer vacation, 
and then went on a pleasing journey with his pa- 
rents. Immediately after his return ho was sum- 
moned to Newport as a candidate for two vacant 
exhibitions. When he appeared at his public ex- 
aminatioD, and took his seat before the tutors of the 
college, the magistrates, clergy and visitors assem- 



312 BIOGRAPHY OF PIOUS PERSONS. 

bled, a degree of modest diffidence was visible in 
him, which is often connected with real genius. 
But in his appointed exercises he was so ready, so 
correct, so perfect, that the whole concourse were 
ready to applaud him with one voice, his parents 
were loaded with congratulations for having such a 
son, and a paper signed by all present, was presented 
to the managers of the school funds, requesting 
that the usual sum presented to the candidate might 
be doubled on account of his extraordinary attain- 
ments. Yet so meekly did he bear this full tide of 
honor, that he manifested not the least satisfaction in 
hearing his own praises, and after his return home 
never made the most distant allusion to these flat- 
tering events. It was now concluded that he should 
become a student at Oxford, and in October, 1805, 
he was entered a fellow commoner at Christ Church 
College, not intending to take his residence there till 
the commencement of the following term. 

The prospect of separation, and the dangerous 
examples to which he must necessarily be. exposed, 
gave pain to the hearts of his parents, but his early 
and growing piety, his extreme temperance and 
modesty, his intense application to study, added to 
a certain firmness of mind, of which he had given 
indisputable evidences, gave them the strongest 
ground of hope, that he would in every situation 
refuse the evil, and choose the good. His classical 
and mathematical studies now employed almost the 
whole of his time, and so assiduously did he devote 
himself to these pursuits, that he was regularly the 
first of the family to leave his chamber, even during 
the severest part of the season. The day was too 
short for his active mind ; and^had he been allowed, 



JOBHUA ROWLEY GILPIN. 313 

he would willingly have added to its length by 
contracting the night, which he was inclined to 
consider as a great interruption to his progress in 
knowledge. It was evident that he desired know- 
ledge for her own sake, and not on account of those 
flattering distinctions which she sometimes gains 
among men. He discovered none of that self 
complacency which is so disgustingly manifest in the 
deportment of many young scholars, nor did he 
ever betray the least desire to outshine an inferior. 
On the contrary, in every company, and on all 
occasions he manifested an extraordinary degree of 
meekness, doing nothing through strife or vain glory, 
but in lowliness of mind esteeming others better 
than himself. Both at home and abroad he appeared 
as a peaceable student in the school of Christ, and as 
one who possessed that heavenly disposition which 
" envieth not — vaunteth not itself — is not puifed up 
— doth not behave unseemly — sceketh not its 
own." 

It had been the custom of this happy family to 
notice the birth-day of their beloved son, not with 
sumptuous entertainments or extravagant gaiety, 
but with the most affectionate congratulations among 
themselves, and the most ardent ascriptions of 
gratitude to God. In this manner, his eighteenth 
birth-day was spent, but amidst its pure and hallowed 
pleasures, little did they expect it was the last they 
were ever to commemorate. His mother brought 
forward many affecting quotations from the authors 
with which she was daily conversant, to remind the 
objects of her aflcction of their past blessings, and 
to cheer them with the prospect of future comforts : 
26* 



314 BIOGRAPHY OF PIOUS PERSONS. 

and his father presented him with the following 
pleasing effusion. 

The Birth Daxj Wish. Jan. 30, 1806. 

"May all thy years serenely flow, 
Nor charjj'd with care, nor mix'd with wo ! 
And still as this lov'd day returns, 
While thy srlad heart within thee burns, 
May gratitude prepare the feast, 
And hope be there a smiling guest ; 
Nor rosy health, nor spriglitly joy 
Refuse to wait upon my boy." 

" Ah!" — writes his father, " could I have foreseen 
that my son's next claim upon his father's pen would 
be — not for a birth-day tribute, but for a monumental 
inscription, — what a season of bitterness would this 
have been." — As they were thus sweetly passing 
the hours of his last natal day, a servant arrived 
about noon, with a letter addressed to him, containing 
bank-bills to a considerable amoimt, with a request 
that he would receive them as a joint token of the 
affection of a few of his friends, who wished annu- 
ally to repeat the same expression of their regard 
till he should take his first degree. This unexpected 
proof of the estimation in which he was held, was 
received by the object of it \vith the strongest indi- 
cations of astonishment and gratitude. 

Preparations for his removal to the university 
were now occasionally made. " For eighteen years," 
says his father, " we had been inseparable compan- 
ions, and now while various preparations for his de- 
parture were making before our eyes, we were often 
ready to address each other in the passionate lan- 
guage of Ruth, ' Entreat me not to leave thee ; for 



JOSHUA ROWLEY GILPIN. 315 

'whither thou gocst, I will go ; — and where thou 
lodgcst, I will lodge,' not knowing the appointment 
of God, that nothing but death should part us." 
The approaching spring, the wound in his vitals, 
which they had vainly hoped was healed, began to 
break out, and bleed afresh, and the influenza, which 
was then epidemical, seizing upon his feeble frame, 
fixed there an incurable malady, which no power of 
medicine could alleviate or remove. The sudden 
and painful changes of his state he met with a smile 
of cheerful submission ; no murmuring word was 
■ever heard to fall from his Ups ; no trace of chagrin 
or anxiety was at any time visible on his counte- 
nance. Neither loss of appetite, or decay of strength, 
neither languid days or restless nights, could break 
the settled composure of his mind ; and so admira- 
ble was the mixture of meekness and manliness dis- 
coverable in him, that it was not easy to say, wheth- 
er his patience or fortitude \j'as carried to the great- 
est extent 

He constantly aspired to the knowledge of divine 
things, raising his thoughts to the contemplation of 
God, and regularly advancing his preparation for 
that eternal world, to which he was making so spee- 
dy an approach. The affecting language of his fa- 
ther conveys a striking description of the close of 
his short and excellent life. " We saw the stroke 
descending," he writes, " which was to dissolve an 
union from which we had derived an unbroken suc- 
cession of delights ; and we could not but tremble 
as it approached. But in the midst of our trem- 
blings we presumed only to implore that its violence 
might be soflened to all the suffering parties. This 
earnest prayer was offered without ceasing, and it 



316 BIOGRAPHY OF PIOUS PERSONS. 

found acceptance with God. He knew the feeble- 
ness of our hearts, and gave charge concerning us 
from his holy heavens. His purpose was indeed 
unaherable, but it was executed with fatherly com- 
passion. 

No terrific messenger was sent to force away our 
darling child ; but angels came on that commission ; 
neither wind, nor earthquake, nor fire, were allowed 
to disturb us with their tremendous exhibitions, but 
throughout all the mitigated visitations, a slill, small 
voice, was heard, proclaiming peace before us. Af- 
ter having been a constant and conscientious atten- 
dant on the public ordinances of grace for many 
years, his Salibaths were now past in a state of com- 
parative sohtude, for so solicitous was he to preserve 
the order of the day, that he would never once per- 
mit his mother to be detained from church on his 
account. While we went up to the holy temple, 
and presented our supplications, on the footstool of 
the Judge of all the earth, he meekly presented him- 
self in secret before the Father of spirits, in whose 
sight places and forms are inconsiderable things. — 
When the bells called us away, he seemed for a mo- 
ment to lament those growing infirmities which 
would not allow him to obey so joyful a summons ; 
nor did he salute us with less satisfaction at our re- 
turn, when he found a sacred entertainment in learn- 
ing the subject that had employed our attention. 
The concluding part of these holy days was spent 
in our customary manner, and never was he dis(jua- 
lified for taking a cheerful share in our acts of social 
worship. 

These opportunities had been always accompa- 
nied with peculiar satisfaction ; our Sabbath suns 



JOSHUA ROWLEY GILPIN. 317 

stiil continued to go down with a glorious radiance, 
gilfling even our most gloomy prospects, and giving 
us the promise of an everlasting day. As he ap- 
proached the end of his course, he withdrew himself 
from every pursuit that might divert his tlioughts 
from the great end of his being. The poets, and 
orators of Greece and Rome, were exchanged for 
the works of experimental religion, and he sat daily 
at the feet of some master in Israel, from whose pi- 
ety and experience he hoped to gain an increase of 
divine wisdom. The practical writings of Mr. Law 
were frequently in his hands ; these he had advan- 
tageously perused in the days of health, but at this 
season he studied them with the deepest attention, 
pausing long on every striking passage, and fre- 
quently making the most solemn remarks. He then 
proceeded to the writings of AUeine, a celebrated 
non-conformist, and a little volume of his was regu- 
larly laying before him, from his rising to his retir- 
ing hour, and if at any time he visited the garden to 
enjoy the cheering beams of the sun, the evangeli- 
cal Allcine, as he termed him, was his companion 
there. 

By the advice of many who anxiously sought our 
relief, we once more changed tlie scene, for a short 
time. But wherever we journeyed, he was still 
making his passage through the valley of the sha- 
dow of death. Through this dark and solitary re- 
gion, every man must pass : but the passage admits 
of a wonderful variety. Some are hurried down 
this valley with a rapidity, which will not allow them 
to mark its terrific furniture ; — while others are led 
through it with slow and solemn steps. Multitudes 
tread this road under the torpors of a stupid insen- 



318 BIOGRAPHY OF PIOUS PERSONS. 

sibility ; and many rush along it, under the turbu- 
lence of a raving delirium. Some few favored in- 
dividuals are allowed to pass in a state of complete 
recollection and composure, and sometimes an ex- 
traordinary personage is carried through it in a kind 
of holy triumph. Our dear son, went down into 
this desolate valley without disquietude, and walked 
deliberately through it without apprehension. We 
attended his steps from the beginning to the end of 
his painful journey : without ever withdrawing our- 
selves from his side, we observed the changes that 
took place at every stage, we marked every turn of 
his countenance, we caught every expression that 
fell from his lips. 

But while we were solicitous to sustain his weak- 
ness, and to smooth his path, we found him in cir- 
cumstances rather to afford than to require support. 
An invisible arm sustained his soul, and supplied his 
wants. He neither felt distress, or feared evil ; for 
God was with him, even he " who giveth songs in 
the night, and turneth the shadows of death into the 
morning." Though he was fully sensible whither 
his steps were tending, ho went cheerfully forwards, 
neither hinting at the uneasiness of the way or cast- 
ing one wishful glance behind. His faith and pa- 
tience unweariedly performed their proper work, 
this alleviating present pressures, and that unveiling 
future glories. Neither inward decays, nor outward 
accidents, could interrupt the regular exercise of 
these graces ; and under their prevailing influence 
he meekly triumphed over all opposition. " This 
was the Lord's doing, and it was marvellous in our 
eyes." We were now strongly urged to visit the 
Hot Wells at Bristol, as the last hope of succeed. 



JOSHUA ROWLEY GILPIN. 319 

This proposal was at first, mildly resisted by our 
dear son, who, fully persuaded of the nature of his 
case, foresaw that the experiment would occasion 
needless trouble, and terminate in sad disappoint- 
ment. But perceiving our extreme anxiety on the 
subject, he was unwiUing to crush all our expecta- 
tions at once, by exposing the secrets of his hope- 
less condition, and prepared for his departure with 
apparent satisfaction. His cliief attention was 
bestowed on those things which were to be left be- 
hind, and which he seemed to regulate with extra- 
ordinary exactness. We observed his provident 
care with no small delight ; but between his thoughts 
and ours, the difference was great indeed ; we fond- 
ly imagined that his views were directed to an hap- 
py return, while he was preparing for a final re- 
moval. 

On similar occasions he had generally required a 
considerable package of books ; he now requested 
only that an English Bible, and a Greek Testament 
might not be forgotten, while he himself took charge 
of Alleine's Alarm, the volume to which he had be- 
come so much attached. On the morning of Au- 
gust 27, 1806, we left our pleasant village, accom- 
panied by the best wishes of our neighbors, many 
of whom were standing to observe our departure, 
and to look on that face which they were to behold 
no more. 

Our journey was completed without difficulty, and 
after reposing ourselves under the hospitable roof of 
our excellent friend, James Ireland, Esq. we re- 
moved to our own apartments near the Wells, on the 
first of September. The friendly visits of a gen- 
tleman of great medical skill and practice, contri- 



320 BIOGRAPHY OF PIOUS PERSONS. 

buted more than once to the temporary rehef of the 
invalid, and were continued without intermission to 
the day of our bereavement But the season of 
our fellowship upon earth, was now drawing hastily 
to a conclusion ; though the decays of nature pro- 
ceeded by such insensible degrees, that the near 
approach of our separation was less perceptible to 
ourselves than to others. Our beloved companion 
still rose and dressed as usual, sat with us through 
the day, and derived satisfaction from every thing 
around him. He regularly partook of our meals» 
and conversed with his ordinary animation ; cau- 
tiously concealing from us those formidable symp- 
toms, which were every day increasing upon him.. 
If at any time we lamented the diminution of hi* 
appetite, he would encourage us by commending 
the provision that was made for him, or if upon any 
sudden change of attitude we expressed our fears 
that he was in a state of suffering, he would ac- 
knowledge with a smile the perception of some un- 
easiness, but assured us that it amounted not to 
pain. In the mean time his pure soul had disengag- 
ed itself from temporal hopes and fears, and was 
silently preparing to leave mortality behind. The 
land of promise was ever in his view^ and he waited 
only the welcome signal to arise and take possession 
of his heavenly inheritance. Under the divine ben- 
ediction and guidance he had passed through the 
world uncontaminated with its pollutions, and unin- 
fluenced by its maxims. His whole 'path had been 
privileged beyond the common lot of man — he had 
borne no burden — he had seen no sorrow — he had 
felt no distressing solicitude. And now, at the con- 
clusion of his transient course, he looked like some 



JOSHUA ROWLEY GILPIN. 321 

superior being, who having alighted on earth for the 
performance of an hasty commission, was again 
stretching his wings for an homeward flight. 

At length the day arrived, which we had so long 
dreaded, and for the approach of which we were 
still so little prejwired. On the morning of Tues- 
day, September 9th, we walked into his chamber, as 
he was rising, and were received as usual with an 
affectionate smile. He answered our inquiries 
with all the calmness, and caution imaginable^ but 
there was an appearance of languor and debihty 
about him, which could not be concealed. He 
presented himself at breakfast with an air of satis- 
faction, and joined in our morning devotions with 
all his usual composure. Had the weather permit- 
ted he was to have spent an hour abroad, but as it 
proved unfavorable he sweetly appUed himself to 
that little volume, which was always within reach> 
and seldom out of his h^d. 

His ordinary gentleness was exemplary ; but 
through the whole of his deportment on this day, 
there was a lamb-iike patience which filled us with 
admiration, though it was observed that his respi- 
ration was surprisingly quickened by the slightest 
exertion, and that be was unable to converse with- 
out frequent pauses. He sat down to our dinner 
with a tolerable degree of appetite, and appeared at 
the close of it to be somewhat refreshed. After 
this meal, it was customary with him to slumber for 
an hour in his chair, while we silently watched his 
repose, and sent up our supplications to heaven in 
his behalf. We were thus watching near him, when 
he suddenly turned upon us an expressive look^ 
which seemed intended to bespeak our attention. 
27 



822 BlOGliAPHY OF PIOUS PERSONS. 

He had long desired to make us acquainted with 
several interesting particulars, concerning the state 
of his mind ; but perceiving our inability to bear 
any such communications, he had reluctantly for- 
borne to open his heart. Nor had we suffered less 
uneasiness on our part ; having many things to say, 
and yet fearing lest our awakened feelings should 
break the settled tranquillity of his soul, and hurry 
us away into an agony of distress. As it was with 
£lijah and his attached successor on their approach- 
ing separation, so it was with us. They maintain- 
ed a delicate reserve towards each other, while they 
proceeded from Bethel to Jericho, and from Jericho 
to Jordan, the one not daring to glory in his expect- 
ed ascension, nor the other to express his sorrowful 
forebodings, lest they should mutually agitate one 
another, and disturb the order of the approaching 
solemnity. But as the awful moment drew near, 
and he was about to be gone, Elijah rose above the 
weakness of humanity, and openly asserted the pur- 
pose of heaven. So when our dear son was made 
sensible by some internal and infallible token, that 
his hour was at hand, he thought it unsuitable to 
our common character, that he should leave the 
world without giving glory to God. Under this im- 
pression he expressed himself with all his wonted 
calmness and deliberation, to the following purpose. 

" I have long known my disease to be a danger- 
ous one ; and now I perceive the danger to be very 
great : — but I am resigned. I have daily hesitated 
to make you acquainted with my real state, lest T 
should add to the sufferings which I have already 
brought upon yon. But as we must all die, T think 
if unhappy when a man is approaching death, that 



JOSHUA ROWLEY GILPIN. 323 

either he or his friends should fear to make it the 
subject of their conversation. To meditate and 
speak upon death, is a part of our duty even in the 
days of heaUh. You have otten led me to this se- 
rious duty in seasons that are past ; and it becomes 
us not to shrink from it now. 

" I see nothing in this state worth hving for ; the 
whole world is replete with vanity, and 1 esteem it 
happy to be removed out of it at an early period of 
life. Much of my time has been spent in the study 
of one or two languages, to which we are apt to at- 
tach an high degree of importance — (then turning a 
pleasant look upon his mother, he added) — but in 
heaven that labor will be known no more ; for there, 
as Buuyan observes, they all speak the language of 
Canaan. Human studies and pursuits, are gener- 
ally of a trifling kind, and not such as we are likely 
to cultivate and perfect in the future world. When 
I look back upon my past life, I see nothing in it but 
what is sinful, and it seems almost incredible to me 
that a dying man should ever speak of himself as a 
harmless and innocent creature ; though I have 
heard that this is sometimes the case. 

If such a case is really possible, it must surely be 
one of the most discouraging that can fall under the 
notice of a pious minister. I know myself to be a 
sinner — and I have not been, even to you, what you 
had reason to expect." Hitherto we had permitted 
our beloved one to proceed without interruption, 
imposing upon ourselves a restraint which could 
scarcely be maintained from one sentence to anoth- 
er. But at this last distressing word, wo fell upon 
his neck and kissed him, with passionate assuran- 
ces that he bad been better to us than all our bopee^ 



324 BioonAPHY OF nous persons. 

and that we had known nothing but pleasure hi his 
society. 

Till this moment he preserved his characteristic 
serenity ; but now his tears flowed apace, his burst- 
ing sobs could be no longer suppressed, and his 
whole feeble frame was shaken \vith the tendcrest 
emotions. This part of the scene was too distres- 
sing to be either endured or described, and it was 
happy that his mother could so far prcvEiil, by her 
affectionate entreaties, as to assuage the anguish of 
our hearts. In a short time he wiped away the 
last tears he was ever to shed : and assuming his 
former composure, thus continued his discourse. 
*' My complaint has been of long continuance ; 
but I have reason to be thankful that it has not sub- 
jected me to acute pains ; for under a state of 
bodily torture, it must be diflicult to preserve the 
mind from distraction ; — I owe it to the goodness 
of God that I have been permitted the free use of 
my thoughts through the whole of my sickness, 
and I rejoice especially in this, that they have been 
directed to subjects of inestimable worth. When 
I first took up Alleine's Alarm, 1 feared to find up- 
on myself the marks of the unconverted. But 
though I was once under the dominion of some of 
those sins, which are there enumerated, Alleine has 
taught me both the need and advantage of a Sa- 
viour, and I am freed from their bondage." After 
a pause of some length he turned to me with the 
following affecting question; ^* Father, what is 
your opinion respecting the circumstances of the 
soul, immediately on its quitting the body? Do you 
suppose it instantly to pass into the presence of 
God ? or do you imagine it to be detained for an 



JOSHUA ROWLEV GILPIN. 325 

uncertain space in some separate and inferior state." 
I answered with confidence, " The passage of the 
righteous soul from earth to heaven is assuredly 
instintaneous." " That," replied he, " is my opin- 
ion, for doubtless those words of our Lord concern- 
ing Lazarus may be depended on — Lazarus was 
carried by the angels into Abraham's bosom." 

Thus closed a discourse which can never be eras- 
ed from our remembrance, and which constrained 
me at the time to offer my humble acknowledgments 
to that God who had conferred upon our dear son 
the highest honors that a father could solicit for his 
child. After reposing himself for a short space 
upon the sofa, while we were endeavoring to recover 
our spirits from the agitation into which they had 
been hurried, he attended us at the tea table; 
where we had scarcely taken our seats when our 
dear friend, Mr. Ireland, was introduced, in com- 
pany with an amiable lady who had interested her- 
self much in oiu* affairs. Mr. Ireland seated him- 
self close by the side of our dear son, and inquired 
very minutely into the state of his health, examining 
him vnth a fixed observance, and counting his pulse 
with the nicest exactness. These were his usual 
attentions to the beloved sufferer, as often as they 
met ; and they were returned at this solemn season 
with the most unaffected appearances of sensibility 
and res[)ect. The conversation which took place 
was perfectly suited to our situation, and calculated 
to fix our thoughts upon the Great Disposer of all 
our concerns. Had they witnessed all the circum- 
stances of the past day, and foreseen all the events 
of the approaching night, our Christian visitants 
could not have assumed a deportment more com- 
27* 



326 BIOGRAPHY OF PIOUS PERSONS. 

pletely adapted to the occasion. There was an 
inexpressible something., which made the whole of 
this interview peculiarly serious and impressive to 
us all ; and at the conclusion of it, Mr. Ireland 
secretly expressed his amazement at the invariable 
composure of our son, while his pulse was running 
on with an incalcidable rapidity. The evening was 
devoted partly to his favorite writer, and partly to 
silent meditation. But however he was engaged, 
the happy frame of his mind was easily discernible, 
through his tranquil countenance; and we were 
unwilling to disturb the profitable employment of 
his thougbts. 

By the vigor and activity of his soul he rose 
above those bodily languors, which many a sufferer 
would havecounted insupportable; nor would he have 
once noticed his weakness, except in answer to our 
importunate inquiries. Constrained by these im- 
portunities, he ackowledged himself reduced to a 
degree of debility, of which he had formerly supposed 
human nature to be utterly incapable ; yet this he 
mentioned rather as a matter of surprise, than a 
cause of complaint. His views had taken another 
direction, and had he found us of a temper sufficient- 
ly firm, there is reason to believe that he would 
have added something to his former communication. 
But after the painful experiment already made, he 
thoughtit advisable rather to restrain his own feelings, 
than to run the hazard of again excruciating ours. 
He was climbing the heights of Pisgah, while we were 
lingering below in the valley of tears. The distance 
between us was every moment increasing ; and 
though this was mutually marked, and mutually 
lamented, he dared not venture a descent to us, nor 



JOSHUA ROWLEY GILPIN. 327 

had we power to rise with him. Our different 
circumstances prevented, in some measure, our 
familiar intercourse. Nevertheless, through the 
dark cloud of our sorrow we saw him borne to a 
commanding station ; from whence, had we been 
able to reach his elevated ground, he would have 
pointed us to all the dazzling glories of em unknown 
world. 

It was now our evening hour of prayer ; and we 
engaged for the last time, in a solemn act of family 
worship. Never before was this sacred exercise 
performed with so much reverence and fervor : and 
though it could not be performed without a struggle, 
yet our supplications and our praises ascended to- 
gether. Many affecting considerations operated 
at this time upon our susceptible hearts : a deep 
conviction o£ human frailty; a strong perception 
of our dependance upon God ; a thankful remem- 
brance of past mercies ; a soothing sense of pres- 
ent support ; an enlarged view of the redemption 
that is in Christ Jesus ; and an enlivening hope of 
future blessedness ; — all united to quicken our de- 
votions at this awful period, humbling, melting and 
animating us by turns, beyond all possibility of de- 
scription. Afler a short and peaceful interval, we 
invited him again to our frugal board, which was 
purposely furnished with food of the most restora- 
tive kind. He accepted the invitation with his usu- 
al affability, and gratified us by partaking of our re- 
|)ast, with an unexpected degree of freedom and 
cheerfulness. He could not refuse to sit at our 
table ; though he was constrained to eat and drink 
with us in the manner of Israel, at their last supper 
in Egypt, his loins were girded, his shoes on his 



328 BIOGRAPHY OF PIOUS PERSONS. 

feet, his staff in his hand, and all things prepared for 
an immediate removal. 

The last messengers were even now in waiting to 
conduct him away, and in this state he received our 
anxious attentions with a most engaging sweetness, 
frequently looking upon us with expressions of great 
tenderness, and benignity, neither wholly restraining 
his feelings nor yet allowing them too large an indul- 
gence. Though his words were few, yet they were 
most consolatory ; and his smiles had still so en- 
livening an influence upon us, that we were almost 
ready to interpret them into promises of a prolong- 
ed existence upon earth, when they were only the 
glances of a happy departing spirit. The same ex- 
quisite sense of propriety and decorum, which had 
distinguished him in the days of health and enjoy- 
ment, was exhibited through the whole of his de- 
portment under sickness and suffering, and continu- 
ed, without any abatement, to the last moment of 
his life. His actions, his words, his looks, were 
all governed by the strictest rules of consistency 
and moderation. He calmly accommodated him- 
self to the varying exigencies of his state, main- 
taining a lovely sedatcness through all the trying 
changes to M'hich he was exposed, and regularly 
manifesting such an equability of soul, as the ma- 
turest Christian would wish to experience in his 
passage through the chambers of death. ' Let me 
die the death of my submissive son, and let my last 
end be like his.' 

The volume of truth was lying open before me, 
and as I turned over its sacred pjiges my attention 
was powerfully called to a portion of the revelation 
of St. John. I perused in silence, the seventh 



SOSaVA ROWLEY GILPIN. 329 

chapter of that mysterious book ; and finding it par- 
ticularly adapted to my present feelings, I repeated 
the concluding part of it to uiy listening compan- 
ions. " These are they who came out of great 
tribulation, and have washed their robes, and made 
them white in the blood of the Lamb. Therefore 
sire they before the throne of God, and serve him 
<ilay and night in his temple, and he that sitteth on 
the throne shall dwell among them. They shall 
hunger no more, neither thirst any more ; neither 
shall the sun light on them, nor any heat. For the 
Lamb which is in the midst of the throne, shall feed 
them, and shall lead them unto living fountains of 
waters, and God shall wipe away all tears from their 
eyes." This sublime passage produced upon our 
spirits a sort of electric effect, while it ofiered us 
the last delightful prospect in which we were allow- 
ed to participate below. We closed the book, and 
gazed upon each other in an holy extacy ; succes- 
sively attempting to express what could not possibly 
be uttered. Heaven itself lay open before us ; the an- 
gels, the elders, the spirits of just men made per- 
fect, were exhiljited to us, and their song of ado- 
ration seemed to come pouring upon our cars, as 
we found ourselves involuntarily rising from our 
seats to ascribe with them " blessing and honor, and 
glory, and power, unto Him that sitteth upon the 
throne, and unto the Lamb forever and ever." It 
was now remarked that we had sat up to a later 
hour thao usual ; when our dear son replied uiat he 
was perfectly ready to retire, whenever we should 
think proper. 

Orders were therefore instantly given for the 
necessary preparations to be made, and we conduct- 



330 BIOGRAPHY OF PIOUS PERSONS. 

cd him to his room ; where he requested to be left 
alone, for a quarter of an hour, which we soon un- 
derstood to proceed from his desire of enjoying a 
season of secret and unreserved communication 
with God. On our return, we found him preparing 
to lie down, and offered our assistance, but without 
accepting it, he placed himself very composedly in 
his bed, and in the same posture which had pleased 
him from his infancy. After the interchange of a 
few affectionate expressions, he seemed disposed to 
slumber, and lest our presence should interrupt his 
repose, we left him to the care of his watchful 
nurse, and quietly withdrew to our own apartment. 
There we passed more than an hour, in a state of 
fearful suspense, feebly endeavoring to stay our 
souls upon God, and anxiously listening to every 
distant sound ; yet not without a hope that the 
night would prove a season of comfortable refresh- 
ment to our beloved son. At length he was heard 
to cough ; and his distressed mother went immedi- 
ately down to visit him. After a few minutes ab- 
sence, she appeared again inviting me to follow her ; 
her voice was scarcely audible, yet it sounded like 
the midnight cry in the gospel, " Behold the bride- 
groom cometh," — and I hastened to embrace my 
Joshua before he should go forth to meet his Lord. 
I found him patiently sinking under the last efforts 
of his disease, with a countenance full of tranquilli- 
ty, and sweetness. My approach produced in him 
a sligKl emotion, — but he had proceeded too far to 
return. Not able to endure the thought that our in- 
tercourse was wholly at an end, I joined my face to 
his, softly inquiring by what means I might yet min- 
ister to his comfort. He understood my feelings, 



JOSHUA ROWLEY GILPIN. 331 

nnA sought to repress them ; — replying to my in- 
quiry with a gentle request that I would cease to 
speak. After hanging over him for a few minutes 
in unutterable distress, I involuntarily repeated my 
question, when in a tone of tender affection he re- 
turned me the same answer, " Please twt to speak." 
He had already opened a communication with the 
celestial world, and fully surrendered himself into 
the hands of his invisible attendants ; and in these 
circumstances was unwilling to be recalled or inter- 
rupted by any importunities from below. Wo re- 
ceived his request as a sacred charge, and binding 
ourselves to silence, kneeled about his bed in a state 
of trembling expectation. A short and solemn pause 
succeeded : when after a few soft groans, without 
the slightest change of posture, he peacefully 
breathed out his soul into the bosom of his Father 
and our Father, his God and our God. 

At this awful moment, all the opposition of our 
will to the divine proceedings was totally subdued ; 
and we sunk under an overwhelming sense of his 
supremacy, whose judgments are unsearchable, and 
whose ways are past finding out ; the mountains 
flowed down at his presence ; and we laid our hand 
upon our mouth before him. One desire alone pos- 
sessed our hearts, and it was too eager at the time 
to be restrained ; that we might be permitted to 
follow our beloved, where mortalily shall be swal- 
lowed up of life. I attempt not to relate how the 
remaining part of the night was spent — but it was 
a night much to be remembered for the pulling down 
of all our temporal hopes, and the shutting up of all 
onr worldly prospecfs, — if was a night, not 6( pain- 
ful solicitude but of incurable sorrow, — a night of 



332 BIOGRAPHY OF PIOUS PERSONS. 

intolerable bitterness, and a season of deep humilia- 
tion before God. On the morrow our sympathizing 
friends came to mourn with us, and to comfort us ; 
and though no human consolation could avail much 
in our case, yet were we sensibly touched with their 
affectionate commiserations. 

But in how many ways our inestimable friend,, 
Mr. Ireland, was pleased to exercise towards us his 
active benevolence, it would be difficult to enumer- 
ate. He took upon himself the arrangement of the 
mournful scene that was to follow, and at the day 
appointed came with a select number of attendants 
to convey the precious remains of our departed son 
to his own sepulchre. Nor was he satisfied till he 
had gathered us again Hnder his own roof; where 
he adopted every means that humanity could devise, 
for the mitigation of our growing anguish — allow- 
ing us all the freedom that mourners could desire, 
and daily watching for opportunities of doing us 
good ; neither omitting to remind us of our past fe- 
licity, nor refusing to mingle his tears m ith ours. 

On the ensuing Sabbath a pathetic sermon was 
delivered on the sad occurrence, and though we 
exerted all the resolution we were capable of, to 
attend the public worship on this solemn occasion, 
all our efforts were not sufficient to save us from 
sinking under the impression of a discourse so 
appropriate and affecting. Our compassionate host 
would gladly have detained us with him through the 
approaching winter, conceiving that so complete a 
change of scene and society, might produce some 
desirable eflect upon our spirits. But affliction had 
unfitted us for all human converse ; and after paying 
a sorrowful visit to the tomb of our beloved Joshua, 



JOSHUA ROWLEY GILPIN. 333 

we tore ourselves away from the place of his burial 
to the place of his birth, that where our joys had 
risen without limits, there our tears might flow 
without restraint. 

Many days have now passed since the separating 
stroke was inflicted ; and though spring and summer, 
autumn and winter, have maintained their regular 
courses without interruption,, yet have we knovm 
but one continued season of sadness and of sorrow. 
Every thing around us has undergone a dismal 
change, — the charm of life is efiectuaJly broken ; a 
sable veil, never more to be removed, is cast over 
all the pleasant appearances of nature ; our house 
is become a solitude ; and the world presents us 
with a dreary and desolate wilderness. But it af- 
fords us consolation to reflect that we are passing 
through this wilderness as strangers and sojourners ; 
that we have already surmounted many of its difii- 
culties, and shall shortly reach its utmost boundary. 
Our best enjoyments are still at a distance ; and 
though the remaining part of our way may proba- 
bly be more distressing, yet it will assuredly be 
much shorter than that which is past. Our dear 
companion, it is true, has unexpectedly started from 
our side, and gained the celestial country before us. 
But we are hastily following after ; and a few more 
laborious steps will restore him to our embraces, 
where there shall be no more death, neither sorrow, 
or crying. 

In the meanwhile, such an affliction as ours 
admits of no perfect remedy ; nor is it possible that 
the days of our mourning should terminate on this 
side the grave. Yet when we consider by whose 
appointment this has befallen us, we silently submit 
28 



334 BIOGRAPHY OP PIOUS PERSONS. 

ourselves to his sovereign pleasure. lie hath an 
undoubted right to do what he will with his own. 
We are in his hands as clay in the hands of the 
potter ; and to him only are known the methods by 
which we may be finally wrought into vessels of 
honor. If a sparrow cannot tall to the ground 
without his notice ; if he condescends to number 
even the hairs of our head, we may safely satisfy 
ourselves, that he would not have permitted so 
irreparable a calamity to overtake us, except for the 
accomplishment of some truly important puiiiosc. 
What that purpose may be, it is vain for us to 
inquire ; but whether it be our preservation from 
some formidable mischief, or our preparation for 
some inestimable good, we devoutly pray that his 
gracious design may be fully answered upon us. 
It was the will of our adorable I^ord, that we should 
be employed in training up an heir of salvation. 
Such an appointment was both happy and honorable, 
and it has occupied our most serious thoughts for 
eighteen years together. During this memorable 
interval, we have put forth many vigorous efforts, 
and tasted many extraordinary consolations, in the 
execution of our interesting commission. And 
though our conduct has been defective in many 
particulars, we know not, had wc our work to begin 
anew, that we could adopt a more promising course 
than that which we have industriously pursued, 
which has been attended with such unexampled 
felicity, and crowned with such complete success. 
Our appointment is now withdrawn, our work is 
done, and our finished pupil called away to the 
court of his heavenly Father. ' The Lord gave. 



JOSHUA ROWLEY GILPIN. 335 

and the Lord hath taken away; blessed be the 
name of the Lord.' 

The sacred volume exhibits man under the figure 
of a flower.'*— All flesh is grass, and all the goodliness 
thereof as the flower of the field. We have for- 
merly admired the aptness of this figure ; now it 
strikes us in a new and afibcting point of view. 
The flowers of the field present us with a fascinating 
spectacle ; they charm our eyes by the beauty of 
their form^ the delicacy of their texture, the brilliancy 
of their colors, and the fragrance of their perfume ; 
they serve at once to enrich our grounds, to adorn 
our houses, and to regale our senses ; but after all 
the attention we can bestow upon them, their frailty 
is proportionate to their loveliness. And such are 
those most interesting pieces of human nature, the 
children of a family. One of these fair flowers 
was lately in our possession ; we saw it bud, — we 
Matched its opening ; — we admired its rising excel- 
lences ; and pleased ourselves with the hope that it 
would flourish for years to come : — we fostered it 
with care ; — we guarded it with vigilance, and 
earnestly recommended it to the protection of Ilim, 
who had formed and fashioned it with such inimitable 
skill. But after all our unavailing solicitude, and 
all our passionate supplications, we saw it languish, 
and fade, and die ! Such was the Divine will 
concerning us — and now, while we wander about the 
place, of which this blooming plant was once the 
choicest ornament, we endeavor to sooth our 
aflliction with the consolatory assertion of the 
|)rophct, ' the flower fadeth : but the word of our 
Ciod shall stand forever.'" 

To this exquisite picture of the sorrows of a 
2S* 



336 BIOGRAPHY OF PIOUS PERSONS. 

pious father, I add a sentence from his prefatory 
address, in which he affectionately dedicates his 
invaluable little work to the people of his pastoral 
charge. *' The time is fast approaching when you 
will see me borne to that grave, which is already 
prepared to receive me. But long after my minis- 
terial exercises shall have reached their finaJ period ; 
and when you, my brethren, shall be sleeping around 
me in the dust, my dearest son may continue to act 
through the medium of this little volume, as the 
modest instructor of your descendants, persuading 
them by his own example, and haply prevailing 
with some of them, to become followers of those, 
who through faith and patience inherit the promises." 



THE END. 



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