Imatges de pÓgina

measure, 'may obtain,—that honour connected with the occasion of our which cometh only from God. He mecting? In my judginent, closely. aspired not at that baneful fame which We must know the true nature of is seized by diabolical skill and animal Christian glory, before we can select courage in fields of death,—which the proper objects of Christian admihistory records in blood, which cha- ration, or confer a suitable tribute of rity defaces with tears; which, if there Christian culogy: lle only who imis justice in heaven, will be the sub- bibes a portion of the same spirit, who ject of an awful retribution in that acts upon the same views, who coworld where the destroyers of life will operates according to his abilities in meet theinselves a more terrible de promoting the same ends to which we struction. To the desire of such fanne have just alluded, as the ends of our as this the doctrine and the life of Je- great Master ;-he only merits the sus are directly opposed. His was the name and the honours of a Christian glory of pouring the light of divine hero ; and it is upon this ground alone truth into the dark and bewildered that we have assembled to express our mind, and of delivering it, by just veneration for the character -and ineconceptions of the moral governinent mory of Dr. Daniel Williains. It is of God, from that bondage of ignorance not by, splendour of birth, of brilliancy and superstition, which constitutes its of genius, or any of those qualities or degradation and its misery. His was deeds which dazzle a vain imaginathe glory of speaking promises of rest tion, that this veneration is excited. to the weary and the heavy-laden; of No. But it is because our founder taking the desponding penitent by the voluntarily, abridged even that splenhand, and leading him direct, without dour which his fortune might have the intervention of priests or sacrifices, commanded ;-it is because he volunto the mercy-scat of a father erer tarily devoted solid talents and useful ready to forgive, ever anxious to bless learning to the duties of a profession even his prodigal child. His was the which the world despised, and from glory of exposing that pride and covet- which he expected and received no ousness, which establishes an usurped worldly advantage ;—it is because he dominion over the rights of conscience, preferred the simplicity of disseming under the hypocritical pretence of zeal worship, and the full possession of for God ;-an usurpation which was, Christian liberty, to the favours of the and unhappily yet is, employed by great, which he might have enjoyed ; men in power, to exalt the few, en- because he chose rather to be the hoslave the many, and defeat the efforts nest, disinterested champion of truth of enlightened benevolence for the and freedom, than to bask in the sunpeace and improvement of the human shine of courts and churches ;-because race :—to break down every wall of he thus formed one in that illustrious partition which divides man from his band, who have maintained the rights brother; and to bind the rational crea- of conscience agaiust the usurpations tion of God together by the tie of a of power, and blessed their posterity common faith, a common hope, and with greater privileges than they thema common charity; to extipate ike selves inherited ;-it is because, after base passions which embroii the world, establishing so many claims to reby implanting in the heart that love spect by an upright and honourable of God and virtue which elevates and lite, he perpetuated the effect of his sanctifies all its affections; and thus beneficence, in deveting his worldly to spread a divine influence over the substance, upon a wise and liberal parsuits and enjoyments of mortality: plan, to the instruction of ignorance, -in one word, to restore simplicity to the diffusion of knowledge, and the religion, purity 10 morals, dignity to encouragement of rational religion. tire minds, and immortality to the It is because Dr. Willians acteil thus hepes of rational beings :--this was the piously, thus nobly, living and dying, ambition, this the glory of the great ihat the tritees of his bazars; wher Captain of our Salvation,--the joy set the lapse vi . century, doing which before hivu: for which lie endured the his bemuests have been the incins of cross, despising the same, and is in instructing wild we hope of sering consequence set do:vnd it the right throusands, meet theinseites, til have hand of the Majesty oa ligh.

broug'it their friends with them, ie But it may be dihal, klus is the esprés, stor onzkidan

on the Centenary of Dr. IIilliams's Death


vidence for having raised him up, and to purposes of charity, and he showed to venerate those wirtues which have them at the end of the year how it had given him a name by rendering him a been expended ;-an example of genebenefactor to mankind. These are rosity which, whilst it enhances his the peaceful claims of a private mau, honour, should put to the blush those which, in the eye of the thoughtless miserable creatures who, with coffers and the proud, are destitute of interest. running over, are deaf to every call, But they are, in fact, and I hope and either of pul lic benefit or private disbelieve in your estimation, above all tress. Ilis politics were those of freeGreek-above all Roman praise. dom. Feartul lest the machinations

It may be expected, perhaps, that of the High Church party should de I should enter into some details rela- feat the Protestant succession, he re tive to the life of Dr. Williams; but inonstrated boldly on that subject with this would not be consistent with Lord Oxford, to whom he was well the brevity of such an address : -besides, known, and incurred his resentment the necessity is precluded by a short because he communicated his fears to memoir,* written, with his usual


others. But his principles were to spicuity and information, by our ex- him inore dear than the favour of the cellent friend and librarian.f I shall great; and his adherence to rectitude therefore merely observe, that, judging on this occasion received an approfrom his writings, our founder was priate reward. For the displeasure of evidently a man of strong natural a tory minister was soon compensated powers, of considerable learning and by the approbation of a constitutional acuteness; and, what is still more to king, to whom, at the head of the his credit

, whilst he steadily defends dissenting body of ministers, he deliwhat he conceived to be important vered a congratulatory address on his truth, he discovers that spirit of can- accession to the throne. He had fordour which ought ever to distinguish, merly been consulted by William III., though it too seldom has distinguished, one of the few princes who have had the Christian controversialist. His the wisdom and the manly condescenreligious sentiments were orthodox, sion of mind to advise with such a according to the common acceptation character. His counsels were congeof that word, though not orthodox nial to the private opinions of that truly enough 10 satisfy the bigots of his time, great man, who, had he been permitby whom he was accused of the horrid ted to follow his own inclinations, .crime of Socinianism. Had he lived would have extended the limits of retill now amidst increasing light, there ligious freedom much further than the is reason to believe that lie would have prevailing toryism of the country would imbibed what we think more rational permit. But Dr. Williams's solid and enlarged views of the Christian claim to fame rests upon the favour or doctrine: and from the candour which displeasure of the great, only as these he exhibited, when candour was not

were indications of his unshaken and very common, we may pronounce disinterested integrity. With us he with assurance, that, whatever might stands upon higher ground. Though have been his religious opinions, he dead, he yet speaketh. His best would haşe yielded to none of us in monument is that charity which for liberality towards those who might a century has been communicating have held a different creed. In cha- instruction to youth, administering facter die stood high, not only in his the consolations of religion to age, own iinmediate connexion, but among and giving relief to indigence and deDissenters in every part of the British privation. This charity embraces vadominions, and no wonder. For rious objects; but these so wisely his labours were abundant and dis- combined, that they all concur in in:erested. lle very properly insisted, promoting one great end—the spread indeed, upon his annual salary from of religious knowledge, in connexion his congregation, who could well afford with that liberty which alone can renir; but none of it went to increase his der it efficient as the means of proown forlune. It was wholly devoted moting rational piety and social happi,

His first object was to establish Conumunicated to Mon. Repos, and schools in the different parts of the inserted lol. X. p. 201---203.

country where his different properties * The Rev. Thomas Morgan.

lay; and in these schools more than


200 poor children receive annually fully then should such considerations that kind of education which is suited speak to the heart of that Protestant to their circumstances ; whilst the en- Dissenter, who regards religious freedowment for this purpose, forms an dom as the best foundation of all that important addition to the little stipend is truly excellent and dignified in the of those dissenting ministers to whose moral nature of man? If we set any care our schools are committed. His value upon our own principles, if we Dext aim was to furnish a few young believe what some of our 'adversaries men seriously disposed to embrace have been forced to confess, that to the profession of religious teachers these principles, asserted by our foreamong Protestant Dissenters, with fathers at the expense of persecution those advantages from which they are and blood, our country itself is chiefly excluded by the universities of this indebted for that share of civil and country. With this view he esta. religious privileges which it enjoys; if blished exhibitions at the college of we are persuaded that the same prinGlasgow; and, owing to the increased ciples, more generally understood and value of his estates, and the care and more widely diffused, would extend fidelity with which the produce of and perfect this liberty with all the them is husbanded and applied by this rational views of truth and piety that trust, we are now enabled to assist eight are connected with it;-then what young men annually at that college, respect, what gratitude do we not owe besides giving occasional aid to several to the memory of a man who has done more at other institutions. Thus nu- so much, living and dying, to encou: merous students derive from our funds rage and propagate these principles, the means of that liberal education and to render ihem efficient for the which qualifies them for being ho- great purposes of godliness and virnourable and useful ministers of Christ, tuc? among Protestant Dissenters in En- One thing more was necessary to gland and Wales. It was the intention complete the beneficent design of our of our founder in this bequest to pro- pious founder. There was no public vide a succession of men who, sube library in this great metropolis, to jected to no test, and acknowledging which Dissenters, as Dissenters, might no ecclesiastical jurisdiction, might be have easy access. The sagacity of Dr. nursed in the very bosomn of freedom; Williams perceived, and his munifi. might be encouraged to think without cent love of learning supplied, the de bias or constraint, and to speak con- fect. He purchased the curious books scientiously, and boldly what they of Dr. Bates, and adding them to his think. This is the inestimable ad- own, formed a valuable collection, vantage of our dissent. It was seen which, by the donations of Dissenters, and appreciated by our founder, and and even of liberal Churchmen, and he was anxious to do his part that it recently by an annual sum of 50/. might be tendered perpetual: nor have from our funds, has been greatly in. his efforts been vain. Many of those creased. Every lay Trustee gives a who, for almost a century, have dis- donation of ten guineas when he enters tinguished themselves aniongst us as upon the trust; and if other wealthy the advocates of a simple worship, a individuals amongst us, who have the rational belief, and a truly gospel honour of our institution at heart, liberty, have been indebted to his would remember it as they ought, we funds for that learning which enabled might soon have to boast one of the them in their day to uphold the cause most valuable and magnificent collecof truth and piety. These are consi- tions in this capital. This is not all. derations which cannot but speak to The house in which we are now asthe judgment of any impartial man sembled, built in compliance with our who looks into our history. For there founder's will, has become, through he will see, how much freedom, and the liberality of the trustees, the place the consequent prosperity of the king- of public business to the collective dom, have been owing to the barrier body of Dissenters in this great city; erected by Dissenters against those a place, in which noble stands hare -encroachments on the rights of con- often been made against ecclesiastical science to which even the inost mode- usurpation; in which generous efforts rate establishments have a natural have originated to promote the extentendency. How much more power- sion of religious privileges to men of on the Centenary of Dr. Williams's Death.

313 all persuasions;-a central point, round by which so many excuse themselves which the friends of religious freedom from taking any active part in those in every part of Britain rally, and from public labours which are essential to which even recently a spirit has gone the improvement of the world. They, forth, by which the bigots and per- forsooth, are not public men. It is secutors of another country are abash- enough for them to attend to their ed, at least, if not finally overcome. private concerns. They leave the civil

Having thus laid before you a short and religious affairs of their country account of the objects which Dr. Wil- to princes and statesmen, and wonder liams contemplated, in a scheme so that private individuals should be offiwisely planned, so nobly endowed, cious enough to meddle in such mat. permit me to say, (and from the small ters. It is a language too common; share of merit that I can claim in the sometimes heard even in the mouth of management, I trust I may be ex. Dissenters. But from whatever quarempted from the imputation of vanity, ter it may proceed, I can never hear when I do say confidently,) that no it without indignation. True, we trust was ever discharged with more must mind our private concerns; but care, or applied with more disinterest- have we not likewise a duty to dised tidelity to fulfil the intentions of the charge to that social state of which we founder.' If that founder could have are members ? Are we not bound to foreseen that men who were to be watch over that liberty which we inthe ornaments of science as well as of herit from our fathers, and to see that religion,-the Chandlers and Kippises, this inheritance is not tarnished or -the Prices and Priestleys, — the diminished in passing down to our Reeses and Belshams of the coming posterity? And is it not by the comage; -he future champions of that bination of individual exertion that learning and freedom which he lored : all great effects must be produced : No - if he could have foreseen that such man who has enjoyed the advantage men would have given their time and of education is so insignificant, but labour to promote the objects of his that by uniting his own efforts with piety, it would have added one delight- those of others, he may withstand the ful feeling more to those which must inroads of civil and ecclesiastial power, have passed through his mind, in con- and extend the limits of that religious templating the probable effects of his knowledge and civil freedom which own beneficence.

must ultimately enlighten and bless It is difficult indeed to conceive a mankind. A Priestley in his closet more exquisite satisfaction to a pious communicates those ideas of liberty and good heart, than that which our which a Smith* carries with him into founder must have enjoyed at the close the senate, and renders triumphant, of a life devoted to virtue, and the at last, over narrow views and impoapproach of a death, after which he litic laws. And a Wood,under the was to become, under God, a powerful like influence of education and princiand constant agent in promoting the ple, goes into the magistracy, and I kingdom of his Son. It is a satisfac- trust will one day go into the legislation compared with which all the ture, with the determined purpose of pleasures of selfishness are less than becoming the advocate of popular rights nothing and vanity; a satisfaction and of the reform and improvement of which every man who is conscious of popular institutions. Thus the student having a soul to exalt and save, should co-operates with the man of active covet as his richest treasure. We may life, and from this co-operation no not, indeed, possess the means of that individual can justly plead an exempextensive usefulness which has digni- tion. He who will not lend his arm fied the name of Dr, Williams :-but to the work of purification, because, every one of us, by being an advocate forsooth, he has not the arm of a Herfor truth and freedom in his own age; cules, is a selfish dastard, who, under by speaking, acting and giving for the the cover of weakness, hides corrupsupport of those institutions by which tion, and deserves to suffer the worst knowledge is diffused and liberty promoted, may form, and is bound to

* Wm. Smith, Esq. M. P. for Norwich, form, one link in that chain upon present. which the future destiny of social man + Matthew Wood, Esq. the Right Hon, depends. Despicable are the pretences the Lord Mayor, present.

evils that the most abject slavery can our principles, and the increase and inflict upon him. What would have diffusion of civil and religious advanbeen our state if Dr. Williams and tages. In one word, let us imitate our our Puritanic ancestors had been thus founder, If we should ever grow inindolent, thus ignoble? What but different to these glorious objects, or that we should have been bending to any of the great interests of truth under the yoke of superstition, and and freedom, the spirit of Dr. Wil, consigned to dangerous or to ignomini- liams, and of the mighly dead our preous labours, by weak kings and their decessors (with whose portraits we are appropriate instruments, selfish and surrounded), would rise up to reproach bigoted priests, without the hope of our apathy, to record our condemnadeliverance? Let us think of this, lion, and io seal our disgrace. and be zealous for the maintenance of




On the Sources of Human Happiness. conducive to real enjoyment than a THE principal object, which I have fretful repining


It may be observed then in the is to point out some circumstances first place, that activity is a very iinwhich are eminently, conducive to portant requisite to human happiness. well-being, but which yet are The exercise of the bodily and mental commonly regarded as possessing a faculties in the pursuit of some inmoral quality, or as entitling the pos- teresting occupation, scems absolutely sessor to moral approbation or reward, essential to the enjoyment of life. It -although the improvement and is true that if we were to judge of practice of them is in a high degree the result of general experience by calculated to increase the efficacy of the general language of mankind, we those dispositions which we un:- should deduce a very different inferversally denominate virtuous.

ence; and might suppose that the If the question be proposed gene- true happiness of man consisted in rally, wherein consists human happi- indolence and inaction. For we are ness; it would be difficult, perhaps constantly complaining of the labour impossible to give an answer which and toil we are subjected tn, and exwould apply with absolute precision press ourselves as though exertion of to the character and circumstances inind and body were the greatest burof every individual. The characters, den and most grievous evil to which situations, abilities natural or our present situation exposes us. quired, and the consequent duties, When we examine human life how. of different persons, are so varions, erer a little more attentively, we shall that what would be expedient and soon be led to perceive the fallacy of desirable for one, might be imprac- any inference deduced from this al, ticable or very injurious to anoiher; most universal language of mankind. so that to lay down any one precise The most active men are invariably rule to apply to all cases would evi- the happiest; while none are more dently be a vain and absurd attempt. destitute of enjoyment than such as Some general observations however are given up to slothful indulgence. may be safely hazarded, since, though To relieve themselves from the insupthe situations of different individuals portable burden of idleness, we often are extremely various, yei the general see them have recourse to the inost principles of human nature are the childish and frivolous amusements ; same, and the influence of particular which however commonly fail to modes of conduct on the physical produce the effect, because they are and moral constitution of mar, is in incapable of exciting that degree of a great measure the same in all ages interest in the mind which is necesand nations. It can never cease to sary to rouse its powers into exertion. be true for example that the active Employment of any kind has comman cæteris parilns, is more likely to monly a surprising effect on the spibe happy than the lounger; or that riis and temper, and is highly instrua serene and cheerful temper is more mental to our improvement in bodily

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