« ПредыдущаяПродолжить »
bis family, for this gratification; as the treat could only, rustic neighbourhood, as scrivener, writing out petitions, be provided by dressing at one time the whole, perhaps, deeds of conveyance, wills, covenants, etc. with pecuof their weekly allowance of fresli animal food; conse- niary gain to himself, and to the great benefit of his quendy, for a succession of days, the table was covered employers. These labours (at all times considerable) al with cold victuals only. His generosity in old age may one period of the year, viz. between Christmas and be still further illustrated by a little circumstance relat- Candlemas, when money transactions are settled in this ing to an orphan grandson, then ten years of age, which country, were often so intense, that he passed great I find in a copy of a letter to one of his sons; he requests part of the night, and sometimes whole nights, at his that half-a-guinea may be left for « little Robert's desk. His garden also was tilled by his own hand; he pocket-money,» who was then at school; entrusting it had a right of pasturage upon the mountains for a few to the care of a lady, who, as he says, « may sometimes sheep and a couple of cows, which required his attendfrustrate his squandering it away foolishly,» and pro- ance; with this pastoral occupation, he joined the mising to send him an equal allowance annually for the labours of husbandry upon a small scale, renting two same purpose. The conclusion of the same letter is so or three acres in addition to his own less than one acre characteristic, that I cannot forbear to transcribe it. of glebe; and the humblest drudgery which the culu
We,» meaning his wife and himself, «are in our vation of these fields required was performed by wonted state of health, allowing for the lasty strides of himself. old age knocking daily at our door, and threateningly He also assisted his neighbours in hay-making and telling us, we are not only mortal, but must expect ere shearing their flocks, and in the performance of this long to take our leave of our ancient cottage, and lic latter service he was eminently dexterous. They, in down in our last dormitory. Pray pardon my neglect their turn, complimented him with the present of a hayto answer yours : let us hcar sooner from you, to aug-cock, or a fleece ; less as a recompense for this parti
ment the mirth of the Christmas holidays. Wishing cular service than as a general acknowledgment. The | you all the pleasures of the approaching season, I am, Sabbath was in a strict sense kept holy; the Sunday dear Son, with lasting sincerity, yours affectionately, evenings being devoted to reading the Scripture and
« Robert WALKER.» family prayer. The principal festivals appointed by the
Church were also duly observed ; but through every lle loved old customs and usages, and in some in- other day in the week, through every week in the year, staoces stuck to them to his own loss; for, baving had he was incessantly occupied in work of hand or mind; a sum of money lodged in the hands of a neighbouring not allowing a moment for recreation, except upon a tradesman, when long course of time bad raised the Saturday afternoon, when he indulged himself with a rate of interest, and more was offered, he refused to Newspaper, or sometimes with a Magazine. The fruaccepe it; an act not difficult to one, who, while he gality and temperance established in his bouse, were as was drawing seventeen pounds a year from his curacy, admirable as the industry. Nothing to which the name declined, as we have seen, to add the profits of another of luxury could be given was there know); in the latter small benefice 10 his own, lest he should be suspected part of his life, indeed, when tea had been brought into of cupidity.-From this vice he was utterly free; he almost general use, it was provided for visitors, and for made no charge for teaching school; such as could such of his own family as returned occasionally to bus afford to pay, gave him what they pleased. When very roof, and had been accustomed 10 this refreshment young, having kept a diary of his expenses, however elsewhere ; but neither he nor his wife ever partook of trilling, the large amount, at the end of the year, sur-it. The raiment word by his family was comely and prised him; and from that time the rule of his life was decent, but as simple as their diet; the home-spun mato be economical, not avaricious. At his decease he left terials were made up into apparel by their own hands. behind him no less a sum than 2000l. ; and such a sense At the time of the decease of this thrifty pair, their of his various excellences was prevalent in the country, collage cootained a large store of webs of woollen and that the epithet of wonderful is to this day attached to linen cloth, woven from thread of their own spinning. his name.
And it is remarkable that the pew in the chapel in There is in the above sketch something so extraordi- which the family used to sit, remained a few years ago nary as to require further explanatory details:-And neatly lined with woollen cloth spun by the pastor's own
to begin with his industry; eight hours in cach day, hands. It is the only pew in the chapel so distinguished; | during five days in the week, and half of Saturday, and I know of no other instance of his conformity to
except when the labours of husbandry were urgent, he the delicate accommodations of modern times. The was occupied in teaching. Bis seat was within the rails fuel of the house, like that of their neighbours, conof the altar; the communion-table was his desk ; and, sisted of peat, procured from the mosses by their own like Shenstone's schoolmistress, the master employed labour. The lights by which, in the winter evenings, Lumself at the spinning-wheel, while the childreu were their work was performed, were of their own manurepeating their lessons by his side. Every evening, after facture, such as still continue to be used in these cottages; school bours, if not more profitably engaged, he con- they are made of the pith of rushes dipped in any toued the same kind of labour, exchanging, for the unctuous substance that the house affords. White benefit of exercise, the small wheel, at which he had caudles, as tallow candles are here called, were reserved saic, for the large one on which wool is spun, the to honour the Christmas festivals, and were perhaps spinner stepping to and fro. Thus, was tbe wheel con- produced upon no other occasions. Once a month, siantly in readiness to prevent the waste of a moments during the proper season, a sheep was drawu from their time. Nor was his industry with the peo, when occasion small mountain tlock, and killed for the use of the called for it, less cager. Eutrusted with extensive ma- family; and a cow towards the close of the year, was nagement of public and private affairs, he acted, in his salted and dried, for winter provision : the bide was
tanned to furnish them with shoes.—By these various from the following memorandum by one of his de- } resources, this venerable clergyman reared a numerous scendants, which I am tempted to insert al length, as is family, not only preserving them, as he affectingly says, is characteristic, and somewhat curious. «There is a « from wanting the necessaries of life ;» but afforded small chapel in the county palatine of Lancaster, where them an unstinted education, and the means of raising a certain clergyman has regularly officiated above siaty themselves in society.
years, and a few months ago administered the sacrament It might have been concluded that no one could thus, of the Lord's Supper in the same, to a decent number as it were, have converted his bo-ly into a machine of of devout communicants. After the clergyman bad re.) industry for the humblest uses, and kept his thoughts ceived himself, the first company out of the assembly so frequently bent upon secular concerns, without who approached the altar, and kneeled down to be grievous injury to the more precious parts of his na- partakers of the sacred elements, consisted of the
How could the powers of intellect thrive, or its parson's wife, to whom he had been married upwaris graces be displayed, in the midst of circumstances ap- of sixty years : one son and his wife; four daughters, parently so unfavourable, and where, to the direct cul- each with her husband; whose ages, all added together, tivation of the mind, so small a portion of time was amount to above 714 years. The several and respective allotted? But, in this extraordinary man, things in distances from the place of each of their abode to the their nature adverse were reconciled; bis conversation chapel where they all communicated, will measure more was remarkable, not only for being chaste and pure, but than 1000 English miles. Though the narration will for the degree in which it was fervent and eloquent; his appear surprising, it is without doubt a fact that the written style was correct, simple, and animated. Nor same persons, exactly four years before, met at the did his affections suffer more than his intellect; he was same place, and all joined in performance of the surse tenderly alive to all the duties of his pastoral office : venerable duty.» the poor and needy «he never sent empty away,» He was indeed most zealously attached to the docthe stranger was fed and refreshed in passing that un crine and frame of the Established Church. We have frequented vale,—the sick were visited ; and the feelings seen him congratulating himself that he had no disof humanity found further exercise among the distresses senters in his cure of any denomination. Some allosand embarrassments in the worldly estate of his neigh- ance must be made for the state of opinion when lus bours, with which his talents for business made him first religious impressions were received, before the acquainted ; and the disinterestedness, impartiality, and reader will acquit him of bigotry, when I mention, that uprightness which he maintained in the management at the time of the augmentation of the cure, he refused of all affairs confided to him, were virtues seldom se to invest part of the money in the purchase of an estate parated in his own conscience from religious obliga- offered to him upon advantageous terms, because the tions. Nor could such conduct fail to remind those proprietor was a Quaker; — whether from serupulous who witnessed it of a spirit pobler than law or custom: apprehension that a blessing would not atteud a conthey felt convictions which, but for such intercourse, tract framed for the benefit of the Church between percould not have been afforded, that, as in the practice of sons not in religious sympathy with each other; or, as their pastor, there was no guile, so in his faith there a secker of peace, he was afraid of the uncomplyin; was nothing hollow; and we are warranted in believing, disposition which at one time was too frequently couthat upon these occasions, selfishness, obstinacy, and spicuous in that sect. Of this an instance had fallea discord would often give way before the breathings of under his own notice; for, while he taught school at liis good-will and saintly integrity. It may be presumed Loweswater, certain persons of that denomination bad also, while bis humble congregation were listening to refused to pay annual interest due under the title of
the moral precepts which he delivered from the pulpit, Church-stock;' a great hardship upon the incumbeat, 1 and to the Christian exhortations that they should love for the curacy of Loweswater was then scarcely less poer
their neighbour as themselves, and do as they would be than that of Seathwaite. To what degree this prejudice done unto, that peculiar efficacy was given to the of his was blamcable need not be determined ;-certais preacher's labours by recollections in the minds of his it is, that he was not only desirous, as be himself ay congregation, that they were called upon to do no more to live in peace, but in love, with all meu. He was pia than his own actions were daily setting before their eyes. cable, and charitable in his judgments; and, however
The afternoon service in the chapel was less numer correct in conduct and rigorous to himself, he was ever ously attended than that of the morning, but by a more ready to forgive the trespasses of others, and to soften serious auditory; the lesson from the New Testament, the censure that was cast upon their frailties.--It wount on those occasions, was accompanied by Burkiit's be unpardonable to omit that, in the maintenance of Commentaries. These lessons he read with impassion. his virtues, he received due support from the Partner of ed emphasis, frequently drawing tears from his hearers, liis long life. She was equally strict in altending to bes and leaving a lasting impression upon their minds. His share of their joint cares, por less diligent in her appro- ! devotional feelings and the powers of his own mind priate occupations. A person who had been some time were further exercised, along with those of his family, their servaut in the latter part of their lives, conclude: in perusing the Scriptures; not only on the Sunday the panegyric of her mistress by saying to me, asb? evenings, but on every other evening, while the rest of was bo less excellent than her husband; she was goa! the household were at work, some one of the children, to the poor, she was good to every thing ! » and in her turn the servant, for the sake of practice in vived for a short time this virtuous companion. Wha reading, or for instruction, read the Bible aloud; and she died, lie ordered that her body should be borse le in this manner the whole was repeatedly gone throughi. That no common importance was attached to the ob
' Yr Walker's charity beiug of that kind which e sceketh not be
own,- he would rather forego his rights tban distrain for dues which scrvance of religious ordinances by lis family, appears the parties liable refused 10 pay as a point of conscience.
the grave by three of her daughters and one grand- « This Curacy was twice augmented by Queen Anne's daughter; and, wheu the corpse was lifted from the bounty. The first payment, with great difficulty, was threshold, he insisted upon lending his aid, and feeling paid to Mr Jobu Curwen of London, on the oth of May, about, for he was theu almost blind, took hold of a 1724, deposited by me, Henry Forest, Curate of Lowesbapkin fixed to the coffin; and, as a bearer of the body, water. Ye said gih of May, ye said Mr. Curwen went to entered the Chapel, a few steps from the lowly Par- the office and saw my name registered there, etc. This, sonage.
by the Providence of God, came by lot to this poor What a contrast does the life of this obscurely-seated, place. and, in point of worldly wealth, poorly-repaid Church
Hæc testor H. FOREST.» man, present to that of a Cardinal Wolsey !
In another place he records, that the sycamore trees
were planted in the church-yard in 1710.
He died io 1741, having been curate thirty-four years. We have been dwelling upon images of peace in the It is not improbable that II. Forest was the gentleman moral world, that have brought us again to the quiet who assisted Robert Walker in his classical studies at enclosure of consecrated ground, in which this venera- Loweswater. ble pair lie interred. The sounding brook, that rolls
To this parish-register is prefixed a motto, of which close by the church-yard, without disturbing feeling or the following verses are a part. meditation, is now unfortunately laid bare; but not loog
Jovigilate viri, tacito nam tempora gressu ago it participated, with the chapel, the shade of some
Diffugiunt, polloque sono convertitur annus; $Catcly ash-trees, which will not spring again. While
Utendum est etate, cito pede præterit atas. the specialor from this spot is looking round upon
With pleasure I apnex, as illustrative and confirma| girdle of stony mountains that encompasses the vale, - cory of the above account, Extracts from a Paper in the I masses of rock, out of which monuments for all men
Christian Remembrancer, October, 1819 : it bears an that ever existed might have been bewn, it would sur- assumed sigoature, but is known to be the work of the prise him to be told, as with truth he might be, that Rev. Robert Bamford, vicar of Bishopton, in the county ihr plain blue slab dedicated to the memory of this aged of Durham; a great-grandson of Mr Walker, whose pair, is a production of a quarry in North Wales.
worth it commemorates, by a record not the less valuwas sens as a mark of respect by one of their descen- able for being written in very early youth. dauts from the vale of Festiniog, a region almost as
« llis house was a nursery of virtue. All the inmates beautiful as that in which it now lies!
were industrious, and cleanly, and happy. Sobriety, Upon the Seallıwaite-Brook, at a small distance from
neatness, quietness, characterized the whole family. No the Personage, lias been erected a mill for spioning yarn; railings, no idleness, no indulgence of passion, were it is a mean and disagreeable object, though not upim- permitted. Every child, however young, had its appoinportant to the spectator, as calling to mind the mo
ted engagements; every hand was busy. Knitting, spinmentous changes wrought by such inventions in the ning, reading, writing, mending clothes, making shoes, frame of society-changes which have proved especially were by the different children constantly performing. unfavourable to these mountain solitudes. So much The father himself sitting amongst them, and guiding had been effected by those new powers, before the sub- their thoughts, was engaged in the same occupations. ject of the preceding biographical sketch closed his life, that their operation could not escape his notice, and
« He sate up late, and rose early; when the family doubtless excited touching reflections upon
were at rest, he retired 10 a little room which he bad ratively insigoificant results of his own manual indus- built on the roof of his house. He had slated it, and try. But Robert Walker was not a man of times and fitted it up with shelves for his books, his stock of cloth, circumstances; had he lived at a later period, the prin- wearing apparel, and his utensils. There many a cold ciple of duty would have produced application as unre- winter's night, withoui tire, while the roof was glazed mitting ; the same energy of character would have been with ice, did he remain reading or writing, till the day displayed, though in many instances with widely-diffe- dawned. He taught the children in the chapel, for there rral effects.
was no school-house. Yet in that cold, damp place he Having mentioned in this narrative the vale of Lowes. never had a fire. He used to send the children in parwater as a place where Mr Walker taught school, I will dies either to his own fire at home, or make them ruu add a few memoranda from its parislı-register, respec
up the mountain's side. ling a person apparently of desires as moderate, with whom he must have been intimate during his residence
« Jt may be further mentioned, that he was a passionthere.
ate admirer of nature; she was his mother, and he was • Let him that would, ascond the tottering sout
a dutiful child. While engaged on the mountains, it Of courity grapdeur, and be ome as great
was bis greatest pleasure to view the rising sun; and in As are his mounting wishes; but for me, Let sweet rapower and rest my portion be.
tranquil evenings, as it slided behind the hills, he blessed Henar FOREST, Curate. its departure. He was skilled in fossils and plants; a
constant observer of the stars and winds : the atmoIlonour, the idol which the most adore,
sphere was his delight. He made many experiments on Receiver no lomuce from my knee; Content in privacy I value more
its nature and properties. In summer he used to gather Thao all uneasy dignity.
a multitude of tlies and insects, and, by his entertaining
description, amuse and instruct his children. They Henry Forest came to Lowcswater, 1708, being 25 years shared all his daily employments, and derived many senof agen
timents of love and benevolence from his observations ou
the works and productions of nature. Whether they beauty of holiness in the life and character of Mr were following him in the field, or surrounding him in Walker. school, he took every opportunity of storing their minds with useful information.-Nor was the circle of his in. « Until the sickness of his wife, a few months previous fluence confined to Seathwaite. Many a distant mother to her death, his health and spirits and faculties were has told her child of Mr Walker, and begged him to be unimpaired. But this misfortune gave him such a shock, as good a man.
that his constitution gradually decayed.
His senses except sight, still preserved their powers.
He never « Once, when I was very young, I had the pleasure of preached with steadiness after his wife's death. His voice seeing and hearing that venerable old man in his goth faltered : he always looked at the seat she had used. year, and even then, the calmness, the force, the perspi. He could not pass her tomb without tears. He became cuity of his sermon, sanctified and adorned by the wis- when alone, sad and melancholy, though still among dom of grey hairs, and the authority of virtue, had such his friends kind and good-humoured. He went to bed an effect upon my mind, that I never see a hoary- about 12 o'clock the night before his death. As his headed clergyman, without thinking of Mr Walker ***, custom was, he went, tottering and leaning upon bis He allowed no dissenter or methodist to interfere in the daughter's arm, to examine the beavens, and meditate instruction of the souls committed to his cure: and so a few moments in the open air. • How clear the moon successful were his exertions, that he had not one dis- shines to night! He said those words, sighed, and senter of any denomination whatever in the whole pa- laid down. At six next morning he was found a corpse. rish. Though he avoided all religious controversies, yet Many a tear, and many a heavy heart, and many a when
had silvered his head, and virtuous piety bad grateful blessing followed him to the grave.» secured to his appearance reverence and silent honour,
Note 3. Sonnet xxxiv. no one, however determined in his hatred of apostolic
We feel that we are greater than we know. descent, could have listened to his discourse on ecclesiastical history, and ancient times, without thinking, that And feel that I am happier than I know,-Miltos. one of the beloved apostles had returned to mortality, The allusion to the Greek Poet will be obvious to the and in that vale of peace had come to exemplify the classical reader.
She has a world of ready wealth,
Till summer comes up from the South, and with crowds
One impulse from a vernal wood
Left upon a Seat in a Yew-tree, which stands near tbe Lake of Esth
waite, on a desolate Part of the Sbore, commanding a beautiful Sweet is the lore which Nature brings;
Prospect. Our meddling intellect Mis-shapes the beauteous forms of things: NAY, Traveller! rest. This lonely Yew-tree stands -We murder to dissect.
Far from all human dwelling: what if here
No sparkling rivulet spread the verdant berb? Enough of Science and of Art;
What if these barren boughs the bee not loves ? Close up these barren leaves;
Yes, if the wind breathe soft, the curling waves, Come forth, and bring with you a heart
That break against the shore, shall lull thy mind That watches and receives.
By one soft impulse saved from vacancy.
Who he was
That piled these stones, and with the mossy sod
First covered o'er, and taught this aged Tree ON ONE OF THE COLDEST DAYS OF THE CENTURY.
With its dark arms to form a circling bower,
I well remember.-He was one who owned The Reader must be apprised, that the Stores in North Germany
No common soul. cuerally bave the impression of a galloping Horse upon them,
Jn youth by science nursed, this being part of the Brunswick Arms.
And led by nature into a wild scene
Of lofty hopes, he to the world went forth
Which Genius did not hallow, -gainst the taint
And scoro,-agaiost all enemies prepared, On bis dreary dull plate of black metal.
All but neglect. The world, for so it thought,
Owed him no service: wherefore he at once
And with the food of pride sustained his soul dod, sorrow for him! the dull treacherous heat In solitude.–Stranger! these gloomy boughs Has seduced the poor fool from his winter retreat,
Had charms for him; and here he loved to sil, And he creeps to the edge of my stove.
His only visitants a straggling sheep,
The stone-chat, or the glancing sand-piper : Alas! how he fumbles about the domains
And on these barren rocks, with fern and heath,
And juniper and thistle, sprinkled o'er,
An emblem of bis own unfruitful life:
gaze Stock-still there he stands like a traveller bemazed; On the more distant scene, - how lovely 't is The best of his skill he has tried;
Thou seest, -and he would gaze till it became flis feelers, methinks, I can see him put forth
Far lovelier, and his heart could not sustain To the East and the West, to the South and the North; The beauty, still more beauteous! Nor, ibat time, But he finds neither Guide-post nor Guide.
When nature had subdued him to herself,
Would he forget those beings, to whose minds,
The world, and human life, appeared a scene
What he must never feel: and so, lost Man!
On visionary views would fancy feed, No Brotber, no Mate has he near him- wbile I
Till his eye streamed with tears. In this deep vale Cau draw warmth from the cheek of my Love; He died, -tbis seat his ouly monument. As blest and as glad in this desolate gloom, As if green summer grass were the floor of my room, If Thou be one whose beart the holy forms And woodbines were hanging above.
Of young imagination have kept pure,
Stranger! henceforth be warned; and know that pride, Yet, God is my witness, thou small helpless Thing! Howe'er disguised in its own majesty, Thy life I would gladly sustain
Is littleness; that he who feels contempt