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one or both of these funds were considerably in cash. But when
particular favour, with a sight of one of these sheets, observeds that every private expence of this extraordinary man, in the course of a whole year, was comprised within about €300, while the aggregate of Clericus, Pauper, and Gifts, considerably exceeded £600; the whole income in that year amounting to about £1200. It will be required, in what way were these great charities of this most benevolent man expended? I answer, whatever his hand found to do, he did it with all his might : wherever a case of real distress was stated, as arising in private life, his heart and purse were open, and his services also, if necessary, were afforded.” P. 32.
The reflections of Mr. Park upon the system pursued by this excellent man are so rational and so useful that we cannot refrain: from presenting them to the public.
- " To the best of our public institutions, as enabling individuals to do the inost possible good, at the least expence, he was a liberal contributor; and not only gave his money, but what was of much greater moment, he gave to them much of his valuable time. When such men, as Mr. Stevens, thus dedicate themselves to superintend the administration of public charities, it is the best security to the public, that the real objects of the respective institutions tre eğer kept in view, and that the funds are well administered. Indeed, the author of this work with pleasure and heart-felt satisfaction relates it, that he knows no public charity in this kingdom, where the most anxious attention is not paid to afford the particular relief intended, (whether the body or mind, or both, be the object of cüre :) where that relief is not afforded in the most ready, grateful, and pleasing shape, and where the funds are not respec
tively adininistered with all the economy, consistent with the comfort and happiness of the individuals, who are the subjects of the public benevolence. And let me here be allowed to say, that the anxious attention paid, and the valuable time employed in the superintenilance of our national institutions, by the learned, the rich; the honourable, and the noble of this country, induce us to entertain a hope, that there is much Christian piëty and charity remaining in this happy land ; that there are still many righteous among g us, for whose sake this country will yet be spared; and that true Christian piety and charity will never be separated from the British character, till time shall be no more." P. 37.
To the indigent clergy and their families Mr. Stevens exercised the most unbounded liberality; with the secret distresses of this venerable body, by the situation which he beld as Treasurer of Queen Anne's bounty, he became often acquainted, and Telieved them with a delicacy peculiar to bimself. Many of these good deeds, since his death, have transpired, and are re corded by his biographer ; many still remain in secrecy and sin
Jence, to be proclaimed at the resurrection of the just. In his
• To hear you talk of our enjoying our friends a little longer;
"The death of this excellent man, which happened in the February of 1807, was in perfect unison with the character of his life; it was full of sure yet humble hopes, and forms a cona trast to the presumptuous delusions which it is the great object of the fanatical party to encourage among their wretched victims at the last tremendous hour ; plunging them first into the clepths of despair, and then by a niorbid reaction transporting them into the delicious extacies of a funciéd assurance.
We congratulate all our readers, particularly those who feel an affectionate interest in the welfare of the Church, and in the 8
advancement of true religion, upon the publication of this excellent volume. Its simple and unaffected style is such as best corresponds with the character of its subject. The portrait of, Mr. Stevens is at once animated and faithful. The extracts from his letters, the anecdotes of his private life, the traits of his personal character and habits are given in such a manner as to present, even to a perfect stranger the life, the manners, almost the very appearance of the man.
Votiva veluti descripta tabella
Vita Senis stands exposed to our view. The detail, however, is never sufficiently lengthy to weary our patience, but we are insensibly drawn with our biographer to the consideration of those subjects upon which the attention of Mr. Stevens was directed, and to an interest in those designs, in the promotion of which his life was employed. The end which Mr. Park had in view when he published these memoirs, is fully accomplished, the recommendation of the life of Mr. Stevens as an example of activity to the indolent, of cheerfulness to the gloomy, of benevolence to the sordid, and of the pleasures of piety to the infidel and profligate. Let the biographer be heard in his own words.
“ One view, therefore, which the. Author has in submitting this sketch of the life of Mr. Stevens to the world, is to prove, and particularly to the young, how much every man has it in his power, even under very discouraging circumstances, by diligence, fidelity, and attention, to advance himself, not only in worldly prosperity, but in learning and wisdom, in purity of life, and in moral and religious knowledge. He wishes also to convince mankind, by the Justre of the bright example here held out to them, that a life of the strictest piety. and devotion to God, and of the warmest and most extensive benevolence to our fellow men, is strictly compatible with the utmost cheerfulness of disposition, with all rational pleasures, and with all the gaiety, which young persons naturally feel; but of whom many are deterred from the pursuits of piety and goodness, because they have been falsely taught that a life of virtue is not consistent with cheerfulness, and that the pursuits of religion are gloomy and enthusiastic. It is said by a learned writer, " that a good God, and a good conscience, and the consciousness of being at peace with both, furnish a perpetual feast, and that it well becomes a wise man to be merry at it. In no man was this truth more fully exemplified than in the subject of the following Memoir, whose uniforın and habitual cheerfulness, whose lively but inoffensive wit, made the young and the gay delight in his society to the last week of his life; because his whole life and conversaţion proved that in him true and undefiled religion, undebased by superstition on the one hand, or fanaticism, on the other, had had her perfect work." P. 3.
Of the value and estimation in which Mr. Stevens was held by the first men in our Church, the following anecdotes will bear no trifling testiinony:
“Of the opinion which was entertained of him as a theologian, I cannot give a better proof than that declared by the
learned Dr. Douglas, late Bishop of Salisbury. When this prelate preached before the Society for Propagating the Gospel in Foreign Parts, a meeting which Mr. Stevens constantly attended, and of which society, in his latter years, he was one of the auditors, when the other Bishops were thanking his Lordship for his discourse, Mr. Stevens humbly, but politely, offered his tribute of thanks; the Bishop expressed himself much gratified, and turning to the other prelates, said, Here is a man, who, though not a Bishop, yet. would have been thought worthy of that character in the first and purest ages of the Christian Church,' And upon a similar occasion Bishop Horsley, who was not given to flattery, said, “Mr. Stevens, a compliment from you upon such a subject is of no inconsiderable value.'” P. 21.
The sum of his general character cannot be better given than in the words of his biographer :
“ I have now completed, though not in a manner equal to my own wishes, or to the deserts of the inimitable person whose life is recorded, what I had determined with myself to perform: namely, to give a true and accurate account of a man, as extraordinary for virtuous attainments, as any that has ever been offered to public observation. Some may have attained to equal degrees of excellence; but few have begun their course of virtue and religion so early ; few have continued it so uniformly; and few in the private walk of life have taken the opportunity of exercising virtuous propensities to so great an extent. It appears that from his earliest youth to the age of seventy-five, the life of Mr. Stevens exhibited an uniform series of undissembled piety and pure Christian charity. His erudition was solid and various, and his mind was directed principally to the cultivation of sacred learn ing, though it delighted itself continually with whatever was admirable in literature; and the vigour of his intellectual enjoy. ments accompanied him to the last. He was a true member of the Church of England, whose institutions and discipline he thoroughly understood, and whose worship, to the very close of his life, he most conscientiously attended. His memory will remain for the benefit of those who survive, as a man whose piety and obedience to his Maker were zealous, whose faith in his Redeemer was pure and unshaken, and whose charity and good will to man, from the only solid principle, love to God, were extensive and universal." P. 186.
As Mr. Stevens enjoyed the friendship of many of the best and brightest characters both of the bar and of the Church during his life, so is his memory still cherished with the most una.