« ПредыдущаяПродолжить »
occurred, illustrating the injurious effects of excursion trains on the Lord's-day, should be addressed to the directors of those railways on which they run; that, where practicable and expedient, the memorials should be adopted at public meetings called for that purpose; that the fact of the memorial having been sent should be noticed in the local newspaper, or a copy of it inserted, with the reply which may be given to it by the directors. Individual directors and shareholders resident in the neighbourhood should have the evil brought personally under their attention, with a view of securing their co-operation in suppressing it."
the once crucified Jesus. Their conduct on this occasion was marked by great seriousness and intelligence. The baptism of several Israelites on this occasion had been previously expected, and an unusual number of their unconverted brethren attended to witness it, although it was the time of the Passover festival. It has been stated by some of our friends, who endeavoured to form an accurate estimate, that at least one hundred and fifty Israelites were present besides the usual company of Jewish believers in Christ. The aisles and front of the galleries were crowded with Israelites, to whom the service itself was an the administration of the ordinance with great ininstructive sermon. They listened, and watched terest and attention. The result is in God's hands. A large proportion of them left immediately after the baptism; but many remained to hear the ser mon, which was from the prophecy, Zech. ix. 9, applied to our Saviour's public entry into Jerusa lem, on his way to his cross and passion. On the following Sunday, which was Easter-day, to the surprise of most persons, we had another similar numbers at the afternoon Hebrew service, and regathering of Israelites. They attended in great between the close of that service and the com mained in Palestine-place during the interval mencement of the usual evening service. It was a scene of much excitement. A short time before the chapel doors were opened, I counted upwards of one hundred and ten Israelites immediately in front of the schools and chapel, and my own house; whilst there were numbers at the other ex« tremity of the avenue, and fresh parties were continually arriving."
THAMES CHURCH MISSION.-From the report of this society for "promoting the spiritual welfare of the seamen on the river Thames," we learn that, during the past year 1851, no less than 3,348 vessels have been visited. These were chiefly ships laden with coals, emigrant ships, fishing smacks, barges, &c. Both the river-fishermen and the bargemen appear to be in a deplorable state of ignorance in spiritual things, and of mental darkThe "bargemen scarcely know what a sabbath is, as a day of worship: many of them have not attended divine worship for years, and some but seldom in their lives. When at anchor, the crew retire to sleep, that they may be ready to sail at turn of tide. Hence little can be done for these men but to leave tracts, with the hope that, in their waking hours, one of them may be able and willing to read for his own and companions' benefit." By the aid of the British Ladies' Female Emigrant Society, who kindly provide the stipend of a scripture-reader, as well as bibles, books, tracts, school-materials, &c. the THE PRAYER-BOOK AND HOMILY SOCIETY. mission has been most usefully engaged in caring for the religious necessities of emigrants from the port of one which is deserving of a warmer support on -Of all our religious associations, I know not of London after their embarkation. Besides the sale of 932 bibles and testaments, and 382 prayer-testant church than this society. It was instituted the part of all true members of our apostolical pro books, principally among emigrants, the society last year distributed 9,000 tracts, chiefly among the crews of the colliers on the river. Exclusive of the services held on board of emigrant ships, the public worship conducted on 242 occasions on board the "Swan" mission chapel, was attended by an aggregate of 8,942 persons, the greater part of whom were sailors in the coal trade. "It may be safely said of these individuals that not one in twenty would have gone to any place of worship had no such peculiar adaptation as the Thames Church Mission existed." We are happy to report that, in a financial point of view, the society has prospered during the past year, the total receipts (including the former year's balance £65) having amounted to £783, and the expendi
ture to £751.
LONDON JEWS.-Palestine place Mission Es tablishment.-A report from the rev. J. B. Cartwright, to the Society for promoting Christianity among the Jews, contains the following deeply interesting intelligence: "Baptism of six Israelities. -On Sunday, April 4th, six Israelites were baptized, after a very diligent and prayerful course of instruction by Mr. Ewald, who had introduced them all to me previously to the administration of the solemn ordinance of baptism. I had already taken the opportunity of receiving from each, as usual, a distinct profession of their faith, and of their earnest desire to be baptized in the name of
at the beginning of the present century, when the articles of religion, some of our occasional services, and especially the homilies, were almost unknown to the people, and with difficulty attainable society's labours is manifested by the complete them. The blessing which has accompanied the state in which the book of common prayer is now issued by the authorized publishers, and by the circulation of the homilies, both in complete volumes and as separate tracts, through channels in which they had been previously neglected; and likewise by the fact that this society has circulated considerably more than half a million of three millions of homilies and other tracts. The prayer-books and other bound books, and about society is in great need of enlarged support, its limited means having sadly circumscribed its operations in the extensive field which it has to cultivate. Thousands upon thousands of our fellowcountrymen at home and in the sister-island, are destitute of the precious formularies of our church old translations of them require to be revised, and new ones prepared in aid of the labours of the mis sionaries, who are working with so much blessing among the Irish-speaking population, and throughout the various fields of labour in distant and hea then countries; and a rapidly widening sphere of usefulness is developing itself among seamen and emigrants, to whose spiritual destitution the society has been enabled to devote a considerable
portion of its attention and funds with signal success. Even were it otherwise, the existing appeals for the society's interposition and assistance are, alas! greatly beyond its ability to respond to them. To the "faithful" it looks for succour; and, blessed be God, they "are not minished from among the children of men."
LONDON RAGGED COLONIAL TRAINING SCHOOL OF INDUSTRY AND DORMITORY.-It is the only institution in the English metropolis which affords an asylum to male convicted felons and vagrants (from the age of 16 to 30), who are anxious to reform. It is independent of any other institution, and sustained entirely by voluntary contributions. It is not local, nor restricted to any parish or district; but every applicant, if there is room for him, and the funds allow it, is immediately admitted on probation. The probationary test is that a candidate should live for a fortnight on bread and water only, and not be allowed to mix with the other inmates. If the probation has proved the sincerity of the applicant, he is fully admitted to the benefit of the institution. By such ordeal impostors are detected: some refuse to undergo it, and others withdraw after a few days' trial of it. But the young man who truly is weary of vice does not shrink from it, but willingly embraces the opportunity held out to him to amend his ways. Seldom, after they have undergone the probation, have they been known to leave, which they are perfectly at liberty to do, upon a short notice to the governor. During the past year, 142 were admitted after probation, and 36 would not submit to it. Of those who had been admitted, 21 emigrated to Australia and the United States; 12 were provided with situations in England; 3 went to sea, and 2 enlisted as soldiers; 3 were restored to their parents; 1 died; and 12 were dismissed for insubordination. 5 having robbed the institution were committed to prison; 3, being under 16 years of age, were transferred to the Juvenile Refuge, and 1 to the Philanthropic School. 44 from 16 to 26 years of age are now in the institution. The following were the character and conditions of the present inmates, viz.-19 shoplifters (called among themselves sneakers and druggers); 11 burglars (or cracksmen); 1 highwayman; 6 pick pockets (or wires); 1 utterer of base coin (or shoteipitcher); 1 imprisoned for embezzlement; 1 pewter-pot stealer (or cat-and-kitten hunter); 2 robbers of shop-tills (or lobsneakers); 1 robber of bakers (or deadman hunter); 1 had lived in a cave for two years. And it is estimated by the committee that these 44 young men have cost the public and the country no less than £22,220, viz., £21,120 produced to them by the disposal of the money and property they stole, and £1,110 for their cost when in prison. Had they been transported, their expense to the country would have been £6,600 more. "In contrast with these items," the committee report that "these young men are now educated, trained to habits of industry, kept twelve months in the institution, and then sent out to the colonies, at a sum not exceed ing £25 per head. There is reason to hope not only their outward reformation has taken place in the present inmates, but that a decided change of heart has been effected. And these hopes extend to almost all who have received the benefit
"ALL a growing, all a blowing," repeated a neatlooking girl, with a basket of beautiful flowers on her head; her quiet eye glancing to the windows, on either side of a suburban street, as if expecting that some familiar face would bid her welcome. And so it was, the door of an opposite house presently opened; and the young girl, putting down her basket on the pavement, waited for further orders with a satisfied air, as if assured that she would not have long to wait. Presently I saw two sisters run quickly down the ample staircase, and through the hall to the front door; and pleasant it was to observe the happy, confiding smile with which the seller of bright flowers welcomed her expected customers. The contents of the basket were eagerly examined: a small rose tree, covered with buds and flowers, a double white primrose, yellow azalea, and several hyacinths were put aside: a verbena and heliotrope were next chosen, with two pots of mignonette. And then came forth the little purses; and the young girl smiled and curtsied, and thanked the sisters again and again. "Stop a moment,” said one of them; and her light form flitted up the stairs and down again with great rapidity, bringing a couple of tracts in her hand. I could notice that one of them was in large print; and this, I conjectured, to be intended for the mother of the flower-girl: the other, headed with a pretty-looking picture of some kind, was doubtless designed for herself. Another curtsey and another smile from the recipient of the gift, and away she went, with her diminished load of bright flowers, repeating as before, "All a growing, all a blowing."
It happened that I knew this young woman, who sold flowers with which to decorate the apartments of those who could afford to purchase; and, being wishful for some myself, I looked forth from my balcony, and was quickly responded to by a ring at the bell.
After purchasing and paying, as is customary in such cases, I asked leave to see the tracts which my opposite neighbours had given. The larger printed one was, as I had thought, intended for an elderly person: the other, with its picture heading, more properly suited her young eyes. A rapid glance over the contents of each presently convinced me that, however excellent were the precepts which they contained, and however glorious the truths revealed in their pages, they were alike unsuited to the flower-girl, and to her mother.
This young woman belonged to a class, of whose existence few comparatively are aware. Availing
myself, therefore, of information derived from | various sources, gleaning also from a work, of which the motto, "Half the world knows not how the other lives," appropriately expresses its appalling contents, and adding the result of some personal observations, I shall present my readers with a sketch of that most singular race, who are known by the name of costermongers; and this not solely to occupy a passing hour, but with the fervent hope that, by making known their condition through the medium of the Church of England Magazine, public attention may be further directed to the subject.
Strange it seems that in great London, where the richness of the shops and the splendour of the buildings continually attract attention-where the pathways are crowded with well-dressed persons, and where, in fashionable streets, steeds and equipages of surpassing beauty are wondrous to behold-there should exist a race of people respecting whom, till lately, no information has ever been elicited. A Nomad race they may be termed, as opposed to those who lead settled lives; but here the resemblance ends; for the Nomad or wandering hordes generally prey on their civilized brethren when opportunity occurs; whereas the London Nomadic tribes, known especially by the name of costermongers, though ever moving along the streets, and perambulating far into the country, are yet invaluable members of society, without whose active ministry the domestic comforts of our poorer brethren, aye, and our own too, would be greatly diminished.
These people are generally distinguished by the appellation of street folk, or costermongers. They are arranged under six different classes, divisible into numerous varieties, namely
Street sellers, who have eatables and drinkables to dispose of, suitable to various classes, from the hungry passer by to regular family customers; including also disposers of stationery, books and pictures, flowers, trees and shrubs, curiosities, live animals, manufactured articles, and such as are second-hand.
Street buyers, who purchase old clothes and umbrellas, glass bottles and broken metal, with every kind of multifarious article that has become useless to its possessor.
Street finders, who literally pick up their living in public thoroughfares, collecting bones and cinders, scraps of paper, and the ends of cigars. These are mostly old or decrepid persons.
Street performers, artists, and showmen. Street artizans, or working pedlars, who mend broken china and glass, chairs, or clocks, and whose numerous occupations are of no small consequence to the dwellers in small streets: this division includes a very quiet and respectable portion of the street folk, such as make ornaments for stoves, artificial flowers in pots, baskets, toys, and apparel of various kinds. One of our poets, and most accurate depicters of rural life, emerged from this class: a Morland among writers, but without his faults.
Lastly, street labourers, who are always ready to lend a helping hand whenever their services are required, continually on the look-out for occupation, whether to hold a horse, direct a passenger, or stick a bill.
Fifty thousand persons are believed, upon the
best authority, to be thus occupied. We meet them at every turn: they pass us in the streets: they bring fish and vegetables, poultry, fruits, and flowers to our doors: we look at them as individuals, and gladly avail ourselves of their services. But this is all we know no more of them collec tively than of the Nomadic races that wander over vast plains, where civilized man has never fixed his abode.
Properly speaking the term "costermonger" especially applies to itinerant venders of eatables, who necessarily obtain their goods for sale from the London markets: they are estimated at twelve or thirteen thousand; and, assuming that one half of these are married, with two children, thirty thousand human beings depend on costermongering for their daily sustenance. This of all modes life is perhaps one of the most precarious. Con tinued wet weather, as the writer of "London Labour and the London Poor" justly observes, must often deprive them of the means of living, inasmuch as they depend for bread, in many parts of London, upon the number of persons who fre quent the public streets; and it is sad to think of the hundreds who are reduced to the greatest distress by three or four successive days of rain. Sellers of fruits and vegetables are, moreover, cut off in winter from the usual means of obtaining a livelihood, and suffer great privations when the severity of the weather requires additional phy sical comforts. Some may say, and that truly, why are not the increased earnings of the summer put aside for the exigencies of winter? Doubtless it ought to be so; but such is not the case. Un certain incomes rarely, if ever, produce provident habits: we could instance well-educated persons in the higher classes of society, who care not for the future, living profusely on present incomes without laying by any thing for a wintry day.
"Moreover, when the religious, moral, and intellectual condition of the larger number among the fifty thousand persons is impressed upon us, it becomes absolutely appalling to contemplate the vast amount of ignorance, vice, and want" that exists in the present enlightened age. Yet such is the case in the nineteenth century; and surely the old adage, that "charity begins at home" is most applicable in the present instance. Thousands are annually subscribed, to convey the gospel to heathen nations; and yet in the very heart of the metropolis are a vast concourse of persons totally uneducated, or at least nearly so, for whose religious and moral instruction excepting in one or two isolated instances, no adequate provision has been made.
Far back as the days of Henry V. a few persons went through the streets of London, crying, "Strawberries ripe, and cherries in the rise," that is, tied to a twig. Then came the sellers of apples, or costards, signifying round and bulky; whence the name of costar-mongers, which has come down to the present day. Legitimate descendants, therefore, are our wandering tribes of those who perambulated the thoroughfares and alleys of the city in olden times; many of whom stood afterwards by open shops, loudly inviting passengers by commendation of their wares, and direct questions of "What do ye buy? What do ye lack?" Such tradesmen had fixed homes and stated customers occasionally, that went to fairs
and markets holden at certain intervals, to which purchasers in a large way mostly resorted; but inconveniences were consequent on this method of doing business, and nence the wandering distributor, whether in town or country, still went on his way; and, as in former days, so now at the present time, he disposes of green-grocery, fruit and fish, water-cresses, flowers, shrimps and pies, with other miscellaneous contributions to the poor man's door, whose food and even clothing is often mainly supplied in this manner.
Did you ever pass in a carriage, at night-for on foot you could not go-through one of those crowded parts of London, where buyers and sellers congregated on a Saturday evening? If so, you would not readily forget the strange medley which met the eye-temporary stalls of various descriptions, set up for the time being, each with its one or two lights; some crimsoned with the fire shining through holes beneath the baked chesnut stoves; others having handsome lamps; others, again, illuminated with a red smoky flame emanating from an old-fashioned kind of lantern. Occasionally a candle was seen shining through a sieve; while traders, who were unable to sport either a lamp or lantern, had recourse to a huge turnip hollowed out for a candlestick, or stuck their penny rushlight into a lump of clay. Up and down the pavement, in and out, among the stalls, went itinerant vendors of all ages. Here an old man called out, with a cracked voice, "Matches to sell!" there a rosy girl made known to all passers by that her oranges were unrivalled in taste and cheapness: sellers of water-cresses, herbs, groundsel and chickweed jostled one the other; and stout boys, with baskets of dogs'-meat and cats'-meat, made the street resound with their shrill cries. "Who will buy my shoes, good stout shoes!" cries one, "My caps and bonnets!" rejoins another; "Come, young women, now's your time!" and here and there might be seen sellers of mats, with dark red or yellow specimens, suspended back and front; while huge fish-women, blue-aproned and flat-hatted, were conspicuous among the motley assemblage, which, either in the full red glare of chesnut fires, or dimly discerned amid the obscurity of night, appeared or disappeared by turns.
Times have changed since then. New police regulations prevent the assembling of street folks in thoroughfares; but the Nomad tribes still ply their trades in the great metropolis; and the cries of London, instead of deafening the passer-by with a concentration of hard and unintelligible sounds, are heard at intervals-the boys' sharp cry, the woman's shrill voice, the man's loud, gruff, and often hoarse enumeration of his wares; and then resounds, in unison with sun-beams and rolling clouds, that pleasant cry of " All a growing, all a blowing!" with which my paper commenced.
people as we is. Father told us too about his giving a great many poor people a penny loaf and a bit of fish each, which shows him to have been a very kind gentleman. The ten commandments was made by him, I've heard say; and he performed them too, among other miracles."
Singular as such an answer would sound in the ears of many who rejoice in the imaginary betterings of the condition of the London poor, because a few ragged-schools start up here and there, like glowworms among the damp grass on banks, it is yet strictly true. That poor girl knew more of religion than most young women in her class, who never even heard the name of their Saviour, nor scarcely of the God who made them. Her parents were better instructed than the generality of their associates the father especially, who loved to teach his children the very little that he knew himself. Hear further what she said: "Last night father was talking about religion. We often talks about religion. Father has told me that God made the world; and I've heard him talk about the first man and woman as was made and lived, and it must be more than an hundred years ago; but I don't like to speak on what I don't know. They say in the bible, father tells, that the world was made in six days, the beasts, the birds, the fish, and all; and sprats was among them of course. There was only one house at that time as was made, and that was the ark for Adam and Eve and their family. It seems very wonderful indeed how all this world was done so quick. I should have thought that England alone would have took double the time, should'nt you, sir? But, then, it says in the bible, God Almighty's a just and true God, and of course time would be nothing to him. When a good person is dying, we saysThe Lord has called upon him, and he must go;' but I can't think what it means, unless it is that an angel comes, like when we're dreaming, and tells the party he's wanted in hea
I know where heaven is; it's above the clouds, and they're placed there to prevent our seeing into it. That's where all the good people go; but I'm afeerd"-she continued solemnly, there's very few costers among the angels."
Extraordinary as this statement may appear, ridiculous perhaps to some who are better taught, it is nevertheless quite true; "and was spoken," as wrote the narrator, "with an earnestness that proved the poor girl to look upon it as a subject the solemnity of which forced her to speak the truth."
The remembrance of this conversation occurred to me when glancing over the tracts to which I have alluded; and I thought how desirable it would be if tracts were published expressly for this sin gular race of people, containing the history of our Lord, his miracles, and instructions given to his disciples at different periods separately, without any remarks appended. Tracts also might be composed with reference to the homes and haunts, the occupations, and daily actings of the costermongers and street folks in general; having reference to fruits and vegetables, and the different articles in which they deal, giving also some insight into the geography of other lands.
Prov. xvi. Phil. iii.
3. Saturday "Some will ask, 'Is the sabbath to be a day of gloom and weariness? My dear brethren, if it be so, the fault is not in the sabbath, but in yourselves. Those who know and love God are glad of this remission from labour and social pleasures, because it gives them more perfect liberty of communion with God. And this is the very promise of the sabbath, if thou keep, as has been said, Then,' adds the prophet (Isai. Iviii. 14), shalt thou delight thyself in the Lord; for the mouth of the Lord hath spoken it.' But, if, dear brethren, you are strangers to God, the fault is there; it is not in the sabbath. Heaven itself, which is an eternal sabbath, would be a weariness to you. Do not question the sabbath, do not argue on worldly principles; go, and pray to God for that change of heart which is essential, not only to your sabbath enjoyment, but to your happiness
here and hereafter. Meantime do not rebel
against the sabbath; but thank your heavenly Father, who ties your hands and binds your lips and eyes on that day, in order that, kept awhile from the toys which distract your heart from him, you may listen to his voice, may repent, and arise us the prodigal son, and go to him, as henceforth to be the whole source of your happiness. Then the sabbath will be a precious day to you. For in its holy ordinances you will strive to realize, and sometimes will realize, the general assembly and church of the first-born. In your privacy, you will bail the extra hour of communion with God unbroken upon by distractions. In your families, you will witness with gladness the rest given to each, and improve it for special instruction and holy intercourse. In your quiet walks, you will rejoice in him who made all things, and rested on the sabbath day which he had made. In a word, succeeding sabbaths here, as they bring you nearer, so will they find you, and make you fitter for that sabbath above; that rest which remaineth for the people of God; that day which Jesus, coming in his glory, shall introduce; the one great end for which we are made, and for which we live; the great and sure hope of the Christian" (Rev. C. Childers's sermons. 1851).
Fellow of Queen's College, Oxford.
"The Lord is my shepherd; I shall not want. H maketh me to lie down in green pastures: he leadeth me beside the still waters. He restoreth my soul: he leadeth me in the paths of righteousness for his name's sake. Yea, though I walk through the valley of the shadow of death, I will fear no evil; for thou art with me: thy rod and thy staff, they comfort me. Thou preparest a table before me in the presence of mine enemies: thou anointest my head with oil: my cup runneth over. Surely goodness and mercy shall follow me all the days of my life; and I will dwell in the house a the Lord for ever."
IMAGINE for a moment, brethren, that by some strange miracle we were carried to a lofty height, from which we could command Conceive that, not the persons only, but the at a single view the kingdoms of the earth. very souls of all mankind were visible to us, and we could detect the secret wish of every heart of all that countless multitude. Upon what a restless sea of misery and discontent should we look down! Suppose the vision to become by degrees more distinct, and every single prayer to make known to us its own peculiar burden. Is there an earthly good conceivable, which would not find its place in all that catalogue of wants? Little children, even, would be craving: young men would be longing for years to pass away, and bring some wished-for them more speedily to period: old men would be heard mourning for their flight, and desiring their recall. There would be cries from the rich for health, from the poor for wealth: from those who would seem most completely happy there would rise some peevish regret from some one satisfaction wanting; and upon almost every spirit there would rest a shade, the forecast shadow of the coming end, when all the sources of their delight should be sapped, and pass away. Upon every heart would rest a embittered still by this; they cannot grasp sense of insecurity: the fullest cup would be it, their feeble fingers loose their hold, and, ere they can drain the draught, it passes from their lips.
We live amid one general murmur of com plaint: mankind all are craving, like lion's whelps disappointed of their food. There would seem to be no peace, no real contentment, no actual enjoyment of the present, because no assurance for the future time. In very truth, brethren, the world in its