Imatges de pàgina

his legs

As I darkened the little light he had, he lifted up a hopeless eye towards the door, then cast it down-shook his head, and went. on with his work of affliction. I heard his chains

upon as he turned his body to lay his little stick upon the bundle-Ho gave a deep sigh-I saw the iron enter inte his soul. I burst into bears—I could not sustain the picture of confinement which fancy had drawn,





My young master in London is dead, said Obadiah _Here is sad news, Trim, cried Susannah, wiping her eyes as Trim stepped into the kitchen,master Bobby is dead,

I lament for him from my heart and my soul, said Trim, fetching a sigh poor creature ! poor boy! poor gentleman!

He was alive last Whitsuntide, said the coachman.-Whitsun. tide ! alas ! cried Trim; extending his right arm, and falling instantly into the same attitude in which he read the sermon, what is Whitsuntide, Jonathan, (for that was the coachman's name) or Shrovetide, or any tide or time past, to this ? Are we not here now, continued the corporal, (striking the end of his stick perpendicular upon the floor, so as to give an idea of health and stability) and are wenot (dropping bis hat upon the ground gone! In a moment"It was infinitely striking! Susannah burst: into a flood of tears. We are not stocks and stones-Jonathan; Obadiah, the cook-maid, all melted.—The foolish fat-scullion herself, who was scouring a fish-kettle upon her knees, was roused with it. The whole kitchen crouded about the corporal.

" Are we not here nownand gone in a moment.?" There was nothing in the sentence it was one of your

self-evident. truths we have the advantage of hearing every day, and if Trim had not trusted more to his hat, than his head, he had made nothing at all of it.

"Are we not here now, continued the corporal, and are not” (dropping his hat plump upon the ground-and pausing, before he pronounced the word) "gone! in a moment?” The descent of the hat was as if a heavy lump of clay had been kneaded into the crown of it. Nothing could have expressed the sentiment of mortality, of which it was the type and forerunner, like, it; his hand seemed to vanish from under it, it fell dead, the corporal's eye fixed upon it, as upon a corpse -and Susannah burst into a flood of tears.



[merged small][ocr errors][merged small][merged small]
[merged small][ocr errors]

There is not a more pleasing exercise of the mind, tean grati. tude. It is accompanied with so greu inward satisfaction, that the duty is sufficiently rewarded by the performance. It is not, like the practice of many other virtues, difficult and painful, but attended with so mr ch pleasure, that were there no positive command, which enjoined it, nor any recompense laid up for it hereafter, a generous mind would indulge in it, for the natural gratification which it affords.

If gratitude is due from man to man, how much more from man to his Maker? The supreme being does not only confer upon us those bounties which proceed more immediately from his hand, but even those benefits which are conveyed to us by others. Every blessing we enjoy, by what means soever it may be derived upon us, is the gift of Him who is the great Author of good, and the Father of mercies.

If gratitude, when exerted towards one another, naturally produces a very pliasing sensation in the mind of a grateful man, it exalts the soul into šapturt, when it is employed on this great object of guilude ; on this beneficent Being, who has given us every thing we alısacly possess, and from whom we expect crery thing we ret hope for.


[merged small][ocr errors][merged small]

To promote the virtue of gentleness, we ought to view our character with an impartial eye; and to learn from our own failings, to give that indulgence which in our turn we claim. Itis pride which fills the world with so much harshness and severity, In the fullnes of self-estimation, we forget what we are. We claim attentions to which we are not entitled. We are rigorous to offences, as if we had never offended ; unfeeling to dist. essa as if we knew not what it was to suffer. From those airy regions of pride and folly, let us descend to our proper level. Let us survey the natural equality on which providence has placed man with man, and reflect on the infirmities common to all. If the reflection of paturat equality and mytual offences, be insuf

[ocr errors]

ficient to prompt humanity, let us 2, least remember what we are in the sight of our Creator. Have we none of that forbearance to give one another, which we all so earnestly intreat from heaven? Can we look for clemency or gentleness from our Judige, when we are so backward to shew it to our own breth





How lov'd, how valu'd once, avails thee not,
To whom related, or by whom begot:
A heap of dust alone remains of thee ;
"Tis all thou art, and all the proud shall be.


May I govern my passions with absolute sway;
wiser and better as life wears away.


On a mountain, stretch'd beneath á hoary willow,
Lay a shepherd swain, and view'd the rolling billow



O sacred solitude ; divine retreat!
Choice of the prudent! envy of the great!
By thy pure stream, or in-thy waving shade,
We court fair Wisdom, that celestial maid:
The genuine offspring of her lov’d embrace,
(Strangers on earth) are Innocence and peace.
There from the ways of men laid safe ashore,
We smile to hear the distant tempest roar :
There, bless'd with health, with business unperplex'd
This life we relish, and ensure the next.

*By solitude here is meant, a temporary seclusion from the worla


[merged small][ocr errors]
« AnteriorContinua »