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rable dignity, and with equal propriety, it is styled “the river of life.” It visits the house of the mourner, and revives the spirit of the sorrowful; it makes glad the city, and makes happy the servants of our God. It quickens even the dead; and every human treature that drinks of its water, lives for ever. * Let Asiatic islands boast their mountains of myrrh, and hills of frankincense: let Arabian groves, with a superior liberality, distil their healing gums, and ripen, for vigorous operation, their vital drugs. We have a more sovereign remedy than their most powerful restoratives, in the great Mediator's atoning blood: we have a more refreshing banquet than all their mingled sweets, in commemorating his passion, and participating his merits. In short, we have an equivalent, far more than an equivalent, for all those choice productions, which bloom in the gardens, or bask in the orchards of the sun. We have a gospel, rich in precious privileges, and abounding with inestimable promises: we have as Saviour full of forgiving goodness, and liberal of renewing grace; at whose auspicious approach, fountains spout amidst the burning desert; under whose welcome footsteps, the sandy waste smiles with herbage; and beneath his potent touch, “the wilderness buds and blossoms as a rose.t.” Or, to speak more plainly, the desolate and barren soul brings forth those fruits of the Spirit, which are infinitely more ornamental than the silken gems of spring; infinitely more beneficial than the salubrious stores of autumn. ‘We have a Saviour—tell it out among the heathen; that all the nations on earth may partake of the gift, and join in the song—a Saviour we have, whose radiant eye brightens the gloomy paths of affliction; whose efficacious blessing makes “all things work together for the good”; of his people. Death, gilded by his propitious smile, even death itself looks gay. Nor is the grave, under his benign administration, any longer a den of destruction; but a short and shady avenue to those immortal mansions, whose “foundations are laid with sapphires, whose windows are of agate, the gates of carbuncle, and all the borders of pleasant stones.”’;

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Pardon my rhapsody, dear Theron. Your own remark, added to the grand and lovely views, have was med, have animated, have almost transported me. cren answered not a word, but seemed fixed in thought. While he is indulging his contemplation, we may jost observe some other peculiarities of the prospect. Here and there, a lonesome cottage scarcely lifts its humble head. No pompous swell of projecting steps surrounds the door; no appendant wings of inferior offices skirt the edifice; no stately hall, slabbed with marble, and roofed with sculpture, receives the gazing stranger: but young-eyed health, and white-robed in‘nocence, with sweet-featured contentment, adort, the habitation; while virtue lends her graces, and religion communicates her honours to dignify the abode: readering the blameless hut superior, in real majesty, to a dissolute court, At some distance appear the hoary remains of an ancient monastery: sunk beneath the weight of revolving years, the once venerable fabric is levelled with the dust. The lofty and ornamented temple lies rudely overgrown with moss, or still more iguobly covered with weeds: the walls, where sainted imagery stood, or idolized painting shone, are clasped with twining ivy, or shagged with horrid thorn: through aisles that once echoed to the chanter's voice, mingled with the organ's majestic sound, the hollow winds roar, and the dashing storm drives. Where are now the silent cells, the vocal choirs, the dusky groves, in which the romantic saints prolonged their lonely vigils by the midnight taper, or poured their united prayers before the lark had waked the morn, or strolled in ever-musing melancholy along the moonlight glade Surely those mouldering fragments now teach (and with a much better grace, with a much stronger emphasis), what formerly their unsocial and gloomy residentiaries professed: they teach the vanity of the world, and the transitory duration of all that is most stable in this region of shadows. Behold, on yonder eminence, the rueful memorials of a magnificent castle: all dismantled, and quite demolished, it gives a shading of solemnity to the more lively parts of nature's picture, and attempers the rural delight with some touches of alarming dread. War, destructive war, has snatched the scythe from the hand of time, and hurried on the steps of destiny. Those broken columns and battered walls, those prostrate towers and battlements, dashed to the ground, carry evident marks of an immature downfall: they were built for ages, and sor ages might have stood, a defence and accommodation to generations yet unborn, if haply they had escaped the dire assaults of hostile rage. But what vigilance of man can prevent the miner's dark approach or what solidity of bulwark can withstand the bellowing engine's impetuous shock? Those, perhaps, were the rooms in which licentious mirth crowned with roses the sparkling bowl, and tuned to the silver-sounding lute the syren's enchanting song. Those, the scenes of voluptuous indulgence, where luxury poured her delicacies, where beauty, insidious beauty, practised her wiles, and spread with bewitching art her wanton snares. Now, instead of the riotous banquet and intrigues of lawless love, the owl utters her hated screams by night, and the raven flaps her ominous wing by day. Where are the violet couches and the woodbine bowers, which fanned, with their breathing sweets, the polluted flame? The soil seems to suffer for the abuses of the owner: blasted and dishonoured, it produces nothing but ragged briars and noisome nettles, under whose odious covert the hissing snake glides, or the croaking toad crawls. Fearful intimation of that ignominious and doleful catastrophe which awaits the sons of riot when their momentary gratifications will drop like the faded leaf, and leave nothing behind but pangs of remorse, keener far than the pointed thorn, and more envenomed than the viper's tooth. Perhaps they were the beauteous and honoured abodes where grandeur and politeness walked their daily round, attended with a train of guiltless delights; where amiable and refined friendship was wont to sit and smile, looking love, and talking the very soul; where hospitality, with economy always at her side, stood beckoning to the distressed but industrious poor,”

* I say distressed, but industrious poor; because I would not be understood as encouraging, in any degree, the relief of our common beggars. Towards the former I would cultivate a tender and over-yearning compassion; I would anticipate their comPlants, and, as a sacred writer directs, would even seek to do and showered blessings from her liberal hand. But war, detested war, has stretched over the social and inviting seat, “the line of confusion and the stones of emptiness.” Now, alas! nothing but desolation and horror haunt the savage retreat. The ample arches of the bridge, which so often transmitted the wondering passenger along their pensile way, lie buried in the

them good.” But as to the latter, 1 frankly own that I look o
it as my § to discourage such cumberers of the ground: they
are, general ; speaking, susty drones, and their habitual beggin
is no better than a specious robbing of the public hive. For suc
sturdy supplicants, who are able to undergo the fatigue of travel-
ling, able to endure the inclemencies of the weather, and conse-
*: much more able, were they il. willing, to exercise
themselves in some species of laudable industry; for these, the
house of correction would be a far more salutary provision than
any supply from our table, and confinement to labour a much
more beneficial charity than the liberality of the purse.
We should remember, and they should be taught, that the law
ordained by the court of heaven is, “If a man will not work, nei-
ther shall he eat.” If then we contribute to support them in
idleness, do we not counteract and frustrate this wise regulation,
established by the great Sovereign of the universe? Is it not also
a wrong to the deserving poor, if we suffer these wens, on the
body politic to draw off the nourishment which ought to circulate
amongst the valuable and useful members? Money or victuals
bestowed on these worthless wretches, is not real beneficence,
but the earnest-penny of sloth: it hires them to be good for no-
thing, and pays them for being public nuisances.
Let us then unanimously join to shake off these dead weights
from our wheels, and dissodge these swarms of vermin from our
state. Let us be deaf to their most importunate clamours, and
assure ourselves, that by this determined inflexibility, we do God,
we do our o: we do them the most substantial service.
Should they implore by the injured name of Jesus, for the honour
of the Lord, Jésus, let us resolutely withhold our alms. Their
meaning is, “I cannot go on in my present shameful and iniquitous
course; I can no longer continue to act the “wicked and slothful
servant,” unless you will administer some kindly-pernicious as-
sistancé. For Christ's sake, therefore, assist me to dishonour my
Christian name, and to live more infamously than the vilest
beasts. For Christ's sake help me to be a reproach and burden
to my native country, and to persist in the way which leads to
eternal destruction.” This is the true import of their petitions;
and whether the sanction of that most venerable name, added to
such a request, should move our commiseration, or excite our
abhorrence, let every thinking person judge.
I trust the reader will be so candid as to excuse this long di
give note; and do me the justice to believe, that I am not plead-
ing against, but for the real poor; not to harden any one's heart,
but rather to direct every one's hand. Give out of gratitude to
Christ, out of compassion to the needy, and be for ever blessed;
but give not to incorrigible vagrants, to maintain impiety, an
mper indolence, lest it be demandéd one day, ‘Who hath re-
quired this at your hand!’. Lest, by supporting dissolute crea-
tures in that abandoned sloth, which is the nurse of all vice, we
become partakers of their guilt, and accessary to their ruin.

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s druary moat. Those relics of the massy portals, naked and abandoned, seem to bemoan their melancholy condition. No splendid chariots, with their gay retinue, frequent the solitary avenues. No needy steps, with cheerful expectations, besiege the once bountiful gate; but all is a miserable, forlorn, hideous pile of rubbish. Since riches so often take to themselves wings and fly away ; since houses, great and fair, reel upon their foundations, and so soon tumble into dust, how wise, how salutary, is our divine Master’s advice ‘Make to yourselves friends with the mammon of unrighteousness, that when the world fails around “you,” when the springs of nature “fail’ within you, “they' as witnesses of your charity, and vouchers for the sincerity of your faith, “may receive you into everlasting habitations.” This is to lay up treasure “for ourselves:’t whereas, whatever else me amass, is for our heirs, for our successors, for we know not who. This wealth is truly and emphatically called “our own:'t it is an advowson, we have the perpetuity: whereas, whatever else we possess, is ours only for a turn, or in trust. See the dreadful, dreadful ravages of civil discord wherever that infernal fury stalks, she marks her steps in blood, and leaves opulent cities a ruinous heap.5

# Luke xvi. 9. + Matt. vi. 20. t Luke xvi. 12.

§ The effects of what Virgil calls “Bella, horrida bella,’ were never displayed in colours that glow, and with figures that alarm, jike those which are used by the prophet Jeremiah, chap. iv. 19, &c. As this is perhaps the greatest master-piece of the kind, the reader will permit me to enrich the notes with a transcript of the passage:- - -

First we see, or rather we feel, the effects of war on the human mind; the keenest anguish, and the deepest dismay. “My bowels: my bowels! I am pained at my very heart. My heart maketh a noise in me; I cannot hold my peace; because thou hast heard, O my soul, the sound of the trumpet, the alarm of war. Destruction upon destruction is cried, for the land is spoiled. Suddenly are my tents, spoiled, and H. in a moment. ons shall I see the standard, and hear the sound of the trumpet

Then we o: the dismal devastations of war: and who does not shudder at the sight? The whole country laid in ruins! deprived of all its ornaments, and all its inhabitants! reduced to a sólitude and a chaos. ‘ I beheld the earth, and lo! it was without form and void; and the heavens, and they had no light. I beheld the mountains, and lo! they trémbled, and all the hills moved lightly. I beheld, and lo! theré was no man, and all the birds of the heavens were fled. I beheld, and lo! the fruitful place was a wilderness, and all the cities thereof were broken down at thg presence of the Lord, and by his fierce anger.’

if after all this profusion of imagery, bold and animated even

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