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which was to this effect : The confi

deration, said the good man, that my

Being is precarious, moved me many 5 years ago to make a resolution, which • I have diligently kept, and to which "I owe the greatest fatisfaction that a mortal man can enjoy. Every night before I address my self in private to

my Creator, I lay my hand upon my :heart, and ask my self, Whether if

God should require my Soul of me this night, I could hope for mercy « from him? The bitter agonies I un- derwent, in this my first acquaintance s with my self, were so far from throweing me into despair of that mercy

which is over all God's works, that ! they rather proyed motives to greater ( circumspection in my future conduct.

The oftner I exercised my self in me

ditations of this kind, the less was my 6 anxiety, and by making the thoughts

of death familiar, what was at first ! so terrible and shocking is become the

sweetest of my enjoyments. These con' templations have indeed made me fes

rious, but not sullen ; nay, they are so far from having soured my temper, s that as I have a mind perfe&ly com6 posed, and a secret spring of joy in 'my heart, so my conversation is plea! sant, and my countenance serene. I

that

tafte all the innocent fatisfactions of life pure and sincere; I have no share in pleasures that leave a sting behind

them, nor am I cheated with that kind 6 of mirth, in the midft of which there is

heaviness. .

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THE following letter was really writ

1 ten by a young Gentleman in a languishing illness, which both himself, and those who attended him, thought it impoffible for him to outlive. If you think such an image of the ftate of a man's mind in that circumstance be worth pube lishing, it is at your service, and take it as follows.

Dear

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Dear Sir.
Dear Sir. . .

;?.
« VOU formerly observed to me, that
61 nothing made a more ridiculous
« figure in a man's life, than the difpari-
6 ty we often find in him fick and well.

Thus one of an unfortunate constitu• tion is perpetually exhibiting a misera" ble example of the weakness of his Mind,

or of his Body, in their turns. I have

had frequent opportunities of late to • consider my self in these different 6 views, and hope I have received some

advantage by ic. If what Mr. Waller ' says be true, that

The Soul's dark cottage, batter'd and decayid,
Lets in new light thro' chinks that time has made:

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« Then surely sickness, contributing no o less than old-age to the shaking down < this scaffolding of the body, may dif6 cover the inclosed ftructure more

plainly. Sickness is a sort of early oldsage ; it teaches us á diffidence in our

earthly state, and inspires us with the 6. thoughts of a future, better than a 6 thousand volumes of Philosophers and

© Divines.

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Divines. It gives so warning a concussion to those props of our vanity,

our strength and youth, that we think 6 of fortifying, our selves within, when

there is so little dependance on our & out-works. Youth, at the very best,

is. but a betrayer of human life in a « gentler and smoother manner than cage : 'Tis like a stream that nou?rishes a plant upon its bank, and causes

it to flourish and blosfom to the fight,

but at the same time is undermining '" it at the root in secret. My youth .. has dealt ' more fairly and openly « with me, it has afforded several pro

spects of my danger, and given me an

advantage not very common to young 6 men, that the attractions of the world

have not dazzled me very much; and « I began where most people end, with 6 a full conyiction of the emptines of 6 all sorts of ambition, and the unsa

tisfactory nature of all human plea4 sures... ;

When a smart fit of fickness tells e me this scurvy tenement of my body 6 will fall in a little time, I am e'en as unconcerned as was that honest Hiber

nian, who (being in bed in the great (storm some years ago, and told the

house would tumble over his head)

made answer, What cake I. for the House? * I am only a lodger. I fancy 'tis the ? best time to die when one is in the best humour, and so excellively weak as I now am, I may say with conscience, that I am not at all uneasy at

the thought that many men, whom I * never had any efteem for, are likely

to enjoy this world after me. When 6 I reflect what an inconsiderable little 6 atome every single man is, with re* spect to the whole creation, methinks

'tis a shame to be concerned at the removal of such a trivial animal as I am. The morning after my Exit,

the Sun will arise as bright as ever, 6 the flowers -smell as sweet, the plants 6 spring as green, the world will proceed & in its old course, people will laugh as • heartily, (and marry as fast as they were 6 used to do.' The memory of man (as it 6 is elegently exprest in the Wisdom of 6 Solomony paletb away as the remembrance 6 of a guef that tarrieth but one day. There 6 are reasons enough, in the fourth Chap

ter

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