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tion/ leaves no‘thing/ to ex'ercise resolution, or fl'atter expecta'tion.
The deoad/ cannot return ; and no‘thing/ is left us he're/ but lan guishment/ and grief.
Yet/ such is the course of n'ature, th’at/ whoev'er lives lo'ng/ must oʻutlive those/ whom he lov'es and h'onours. Such is the condition of our present exi'stence/, that life/ must one time lose its associ'ations, and every inhabitant of the ea'rth/ must walk downw'ard to the gr’ave/ alo'ne and unregar'ded, without oʻne partner of his joy or grief, without o'ne/ interested wi'tness of his misfoʻrtunes or success.
Misfo'rtune, indeed, he may y'et fe’el ; for/ where is the bo'ttom of the misery of moan! And what is success to him that has non'e/ to enjooy it ? Happiness/ is not found in se'lf-contempla'tion; it is perceived o'nly when it is refl'ected from another.
We know little of the state of departed so'uls, because suc'h knowledge is not nec'essary to a good life'. Reason deserts us at the brink of the gr’ave, and can give no further intelligence. Revelation is not whoʻlly-s'ilent. There is jo'y/ in the angels of h'eaven, over oʻne sinner/ that rep'enteth, and sure'ly/ this joy/ is not i'ncommunicable to soʻuls/ disenta'ngled from the bo‘dy, and made like a'ngels.
Let hope, therefore, di'ctate, (what revelation does not conf'ute,) that the union of souls/ may still rem’ain ; and that w’es who are str’uggling with si'n, so'rrow, and infir'mities, may have our party in the atte'ntion and kind 'ness of th'ose who have fi'nished their coʻurse, and are now recei'ving their reward.
The se are the greʻat occasions which force the mind/ to take refuge in rel'igion : when we have no help in ourselves, what can rema'in, but that we look up to a higher and a grea°ter Power ? and
whaît hope/ may we no^t* raise our ey'es and hea'rts, when we consi’der/ that the great^est Power/ is the Beost.
*. Although most of our clerical instructors have the good taste to avoid what Archbishop Whately calls “ the common error of giving the “copula” the emphatic impulse instead of the predicate, nevertheless we but seldom hear the Decalogue skilfully and effectively pronounced ; and where the copula does not receive too much force, the subject and predicate are rarely uttered with sufficient energy and feeling ;-and it is only where the copula (" not ") is plainly antithetic, as this, and the 169th page, that it requires to be emphatically pronounced.
Surely there is no ma'n/ wh'o, (thu's affli'cted,) does not seek succour in the G'ospel, which has brought lif'e and immorta`lity to li'ght! The precepts of Epic'urus, (who teaches us to endu're what the laws of the universe make n'ecessary,) may sile'nce/ but not conteont us. The dictates of Z'eno, (who commands us to look with indifference on all external things,) may dispose us to conce^al our s'orrow, but can'not assu°age it. Re'al-alleviation of the loʻss of frie'nds, and ra'tional tranqui'llity/ in the prospect of our oown dissolution, can be received oʻnly/ from the pro'mises of Hiľm/ in whose hands are life and de'ath ;-and, from the assurance of ano'ther and be°tter-state, in which/ all tears will be wiped from the e'yes, and the whole soʻul/ shall be filled with jo'y. Philo'sophy/ may infuse stu'bbornness, but Religion-only) can give pa tience !
“ The Age
THE SUBSTANCE OF A SPEECH, Against WILLIAMS, the Printer and Publisher of
LORD ERSKINE. The defendant stands indicted for having published this boo'k, whi'ch I have only read from the obliga'tions of professional dut'y, and which/ I rose from the re’ading-of) with asto'nishment and disgu'st. For my own part, ge’ntlemen, I have been ever deeply devoted to the truths of Chri'stianity; and my firm belief in the Ho'ly-Gospel, is by no means o'wing to the prejudices of e'ducation, (though I was rel'igiously-educated by the best of pa'rents,) but/ ari'ses from the full'est/ and most conti’nued-reflections of my riper ye’ars and understanding :-it forms, at this mo'ment, the great consola'tion of my li'fe, whi'ch, (as a sh'adow,) must pass aw'ay, and, with out it, inde'ed, I should consider my long course of hea'lth and prospe'rity, (perhaps too'-long and too-u’ninterrupted to be good for any m'an,) only as the du'st/ which the wind scat'ters, and rather as a sn'are/ than as a bles°sing.
This publication appears to moe/ to be as misschievous and cru'el/ in its pr'obable-effects, as it is manifestly illegal in its pri'nciples ; beca'use it strikes at the be'st, sometimes, al'as ! the o'nly-refuge and consolation, amidst the distr'esses and
afflic'tions of the wor'ld. The poo'r and hu'mble, (whom it affects to pi'ty,) may be stabbed to the hea'rt-by-it, - they have more occasion for firm ho'pe/ beyo'nd the gr’ave, than tho'se/ who have grea'ter comforts to render life deli’ghtful. I can conceive a distre'ssed, but virtuous-man, surrounded by chi'ldren, looking up to him for bre’ad, when he has non'e/ to gi've them ; sinking under the las't-day's-labour, and u'nequal to the ne°xt; yet, still looking up with confidence to the hoʻur/ when all tears shall be wiped from the ey'e of af'fliction, bearing the b'urden/ la'id-upon-him, by a mysterious Pro'vidence, which he adores; and looking foʻrward (with exulta'tion) to the revealed pro'mises of his Cre’ator, when he shall be greater/ than the gre°atest, and hap'pier/ than the haoppiest-of-mankind ! What a change/ in suoch-a-breast, might n`ot* be wro'ught/ by su'ch a merciless-publication !
But/ it se'ems, this is an age of reủason, and the time and the per“son are/ at la'st/ arri'ved, that are to dis'sipate the errors which have overspread the past genera'tions of i^gnorance'. The believers in Christianity are ma'ny, but it belongs to the few that are wiose/ to correct their credu'lity. Beli'ef is an act of rea'son ; supe'rior-reason may, ther'efore, di'ctate to the we'ak. In running the mind over the long list of sinc'ere and devo'ut Chr'istians, I cannot help lamenting that Newton/ had not lived to this d'ay, to have had his sha`llowness filled up with this n^ew-flood of li'ght ! - But/ the subject is too aw'ful for iroony. I will speak plai’nly and direc'tly. Newton/ was a Chri'stian ! Ne°wton, whose mind burst forth from the fet'ters/ cast by na'ture/ upon our fi'nite conc'eptions Neowton, whose science was truth, and the foundation of whose kno'wledge-of-it/ was philo'sophy; not those visionary and arrogant presumptions/ which too often usurp its n’ame, but philo'sophy/ resting on the basis of mathematics, whi'ch, (like figures,) cannot lie' — Neowton, who carried the li'ne and ru'le to the utmost-barriers of creation, and exploʻred the prin'ciples/ by which all created matter is held toge'ther, and exi'sts. But this extr‘aordinary m'an, (in the mighty-reach of his mi’nd,) overlooked, perh’aps, the errors/ which a minu ter investigation of the created thi'ngs/ on this earth/ might have tau'ght him, of the esssence of his Cre'ator.
* Vide Note, page 167,
What shall then be said of the great Mr. Boy'le, who looked into the organic stru'cture of all m'atter, (even to the br'ute/ inan'imate substances which the foot tre’ads-on)? Suc'h a man/ may be supposed to have been e'qually-qualified/with Mr. Pa'ine, to look up through na'ture/ to na'ture's-God! Yet the resu'lt of all his contempla'tions/ was the most confirmed and devo'utbelief of all which the other holds in contempt, as de’spicable/ and dri'velling-superstition :—But th`is-error/ mi’ght, perhaps,arise from a want of a due attention to the founda'tions of hu'man-judgment, and the stru'cture of that understaʼnding/ which God has gi'ven-us/ for the investiga'tion of tru'th.
Let that que'stion/ be answered by Mr. Lo'cke, who was, (to the highest pitch of devo'tion and ador'ation,) a Chri'stian. Mr. Loʻcke, whose office w'as/ to det'ect the errors of th’inking, by going up to the fou’ntain of thought, and to direc't/ into the proper track of re’asoning/ the devious mi’nd of ma'n, by sho'wing him/ its whole process, from the first percep'tions of sen'se, to the las't conclu’sions of ratiocina'tion, putting a rein besid'es/ upon false-opinion (by practical ru'les) for the co'nduct of hu'man-judgment. But thes'e-men/ were only deep thi“nkers, and lived in their clo‘sets, u'naccustomed to the tra'ffic of the woʻrld, and to the la'ws/ which/ practically/ regulate manki'nd.
Ge'ntlemen ! in the pla'ce/ where we now si't/ to administer the justice of this great coʻuntry, above a ce’ntury ago, the ne'ver-to-be-forgotten Sir Matthew H'ale presi'ded; whose fai'th in Christi'anity/ is an exalted commentary upon its truth and re’ason, and whose life was a glorious exam'ple of its fru'it in m'an, admi'nistering hu'man-justice, with a wisdom and pusrity (drawn from the pure fou'ntain of the Chʼristian-dispensation, which ha's-been, and will-be, (in all'-ages,) a subject of the highest re’verence and admi'ration. But it is s'aid by the author, that the Christian fa ble/ is but the ta'le of the more ancient superstitions of the world, and may be easily detected by a proper understanding of the myth'ologies of the hea'thens. Did Mi^lton understand those myth'ologies ? Was hoe less versed/ than Mr. Paʻine in the supers’titions-ofthe-world ? No', they were the subject of his imm'ortal-song; and/ though shut out from all recurrence to th’em, he poured them for th/ from the stores of a me'mory/ rich with all that m'an ever kn'ew; and laid them in their order/ as the illustration of that re’al and exa'lted-faith, the unque'stionable
so'urce of that fervid g’enius, which cast a sort of sh'ade/ upon all the oother-works of ma'n
“He passed the bou'nds/ of flaming s'pace,
He closed his ey'es/ in endless nigʻht.". But it was the light of the bo‘dy only/ that was exti'nguished : “ the celeľstial light/ shone in'ward, and enabled him to justify the ways of Gʻod/ to m'an.” - The result of h'is-thinking/ was/ ne'vertheless/ no't the same as the author's. The mysterious incarna'tion of our bl’essed-Saviour, (which this work blasphe'mes/ in w'ords/ so wholly unfit for the m'outh of a Chri'stian, or for the e’ar of a court of juʼstice, that I dar'e not, I w'ill-not, give them u'tterance) M'ilton made the grand conclusion of the Pa'radise-Lost, there'st of his finished-labours, and the u'ltimate ho'pe, expectation, and glory of the world.
“A virgin is his m'other, b'ut/ his SIÇRE,
With earth’s wide bou’nds, his gloory/ with the hea'vens." Th'us you fi'nd/ all' that is gr’eat, or wis'e, or sple“ndid, or illuostrious/ among creasted-beings; all the mi'nds/ gifted beyo'nd o'rdinary-nature, (if not inspired by its universal Au'thor/ for the adva'ncement and dig'nity of the w'orld,) though divided by distant ages, and by the clashing opi'nions, (distinguishing them from on'e an'other,) yet joʻining, (as it were,) in one sublime choʻrus, to celebrate the tru'ths of Christi'anity, and la’ying/ upon its holy a'ltars/ the never-fa'ding offerings of their imm ortal wis'dom.
EULOGIUM ON MR. FOX.*
R. B. SHERIDAN. UPON the one great s'ubject, wh'ich/ at this moment, I am confident has posses'sion of the whole fe’elings of every
ma'n whom I add’ress—the lo'ss, the "irre°parable-loss, of the gre'at,
* The speech from which this eulogy is taken, was delivered on the Hustings, prior to the interment of Mr. Fox, on Mr. Sheridan's relinquishing the contest for Westminster.—Mr. Fox died in 1806, within twelve months of his great rival, Mr. Pitt.