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and prepared to admit and let in those heavenly beams which are always streaming forth from God upon minds fitted to receive them. And to this purpose let a man fly from every thing which may leave either a foulness or a bias upon it; let him dread every gross act of sin; for one great stab may as certainly and speedily destroy life as forty lesser wounds. Let him carry a jealous eye over every growing habit of sin : let him keep aloof from all commerce and fellowship with any vicious and base affection, especially from all sensuality: let him keep himself untouched with the hellish, unhallowed heats of lust and the noisome steams and exhalations of intemperance : let him bear himself above that sordid and low thing, that utter contradiction to all greatness of mindcovetousness: let him disenslave himself from the pelf of the world, from that amor sceleratus habendi.1 Lastly, let him learn so to look upon the honors, the pomp, and greatness of the world, as to look through them. Fools indeed are apt to be blown up by them and to sacrifice all for them : sometimes venturing heads only to get a feather in their caps.
THOMAS PARNELL. 1679–1717. THOMAS PARNELL was born in Dublin in 1679. After receiving the ele. ments of education at a grammar-school, he was admitted to the University of Dublin;
after leaving which he was ordained a deacon, in 1700, and in five years afterwards, he was promoted to the archdeaconry of Clogher. Up to this time he had sided with the Tory party, but now found it convenient to change his politics; he therefore went over to the Whigs, who received him with open arms, deeming him a valuable auxiliary to their cause. Parnell endeavored to recommend himself by his eloquence in the pulpits of London, but from the new ministry he received nothing more substantial than caresses and empty protestations. To imbitter his disappointment, he lost, in 1712, his amiable wife, to whom he was affectionately devoted. His private friends, however, were not unmindful of his interests, and obtained for him a vicarage in the vicinity of Dublin, worth £400 per annum: but he did not live long to enjoy his promotion. He died in 1717, in the thirty-eighth year of his age.
“The compass of Parnell's poetry is not extensive, but its tone is peculiarly delightful: not from mere correctness of expression, to which some critics have stinted its praises, but from the graceful and reserved sensibility that accompanied his polished phraseology. The studied happiness of his diction does not spoil its simplicity. His poetry is like a flower that has been trained and planted hy the skill of the gardener, but which preserves, in its cultured state, the natural fragrance of its wilder air,"2
The poem by which Parnell is chiefly known, is « The Hermit,” which has always been a favorite with every class of readers. It is a revolving pano. rama of beautiful pictures, each perfect in itself. But the story is not original, us it appeared as early as the fifteenth century in a collection of tales entitled the « Gesta Romanorum," and we present the reader with the analysis of it below, as given by Warton in his History of English Poetry. The poem, however, is too long for our limits, and no extracts would do it justice; but we will give a few lines to show its style. The last instance of the angel's seeming injustice, is that of pushing the guide from the bridge into the river. At this the Hermit is unable to suppress his indignation:
1 That wicked love of acquisition.
Wild sparkling rage inflames the Father's eyes;
And moves in all the majesty of light.
1 A devout hermit lived in a cave, near which a shepherd folded his flock. Many of the sheep being stolen, the shepherd was unjustly killed by his master, as being concerned in the theft. The hermit, seeing an innocent man put to death, began to suspect the existence of a Divine Providence, and resolved no longer to perplex himself with the useless severities of religion, but to mix in the world. In travelling from his retirement, he was met by an angel in the figure of a man, who said, “I am an angel, and am sent by God to be your companion on the road.” They entered a city, and begged for lodging at the house of a knight, who entertained them at a splendid supper. In the night, the angel rose from his bed and strangled the knight's only child, who was asleep in the cradle. The hermit was astonished at this barbarous return for so much hospitality, but was afraid to make any remonstrance to his companion. Next morning they went to another city. Here they were liberally received in the house of an opulent citizen; but in the night the angel rose, and stole a golden cup of inestimable value. The hermit now concluded that his companion was a bad angel. In travelling forward the next morning, they passed over a bridge, about the middle of which they met a poor man, of whom the angel asked the way to the next city. Having received the desired information, the angel pushed the poor man into the water, where he was immediately drowned. In the evening they arrived at the house of a rich man, and begging for a lodging, were ordered to sleep in a shed with the cattle. In the morning the angel gave the rich man the cup which he had stolen. The hermit, amazed that the cup which was stolen from their friend and benefactor should be given to one who refused them a lodging, began to be now convinced that his companion was the devil; and begged to go on alone. But the angel said, "Hear me, and depart. When you lived in your hermitage, a shepherd was killed by his master. He was innocent of the supposed offence; but had he not been then killed, he would have committed crimes in which he would have died impenitent. His master endeavors to atone for the murder, by dedicating the remainder of his days to alms and deeds of charity. I strangled the child of the knight. But know, that the father was so intent on heaping up riches for his child, as to neglect those acts of public munificence for which he was before 80 distinguished, and to which he has now returned. I stole the golden cup of the hospitable citizen. But know, that from a life of the strictest temperance, he became, in consequence of possessing this cup, a perpetual drunkard, and is now the most abstemious of men. I threw the poor man into the water. He was then honest and religious. But know, had he walked one half of a mile further, he would have murdered a man in a state of mortal sin. I gave the golden cup to the rich man, who refused to take us within his roof. He has therefore received bis reward in this world, and in the next will suffer the pains of hell for his inhospitality.” The hermit fell prostrate at the angel's feet, and, requesting forgiveness, returned to his hermitage, fully convinced of the wisdom and justice of God's government.
from our pages. The following very beautiful “Hymn to Contentment” will, however, give a very good idea of this author's manner :
HYMN TO CONTENTMENT.
Ambition searches all its sphere
Lovely, lasting peace, appear!
Twas thus, as under shade I stood,
Oh! by yonder mossy seat,
With sense of gratitude and joy:
The sun that walks his airy way,
Go search among your idle dreams,
WILLIAM PENN. 1644–1718.
We come now to one of the purest and most exalted characters on the page of history ;-to one who laid the foundation of a great state in the strictest justice and equity; established the utmost freedom of conscience in religion; and demonstrated to the world that the most potent weapons to subdue the savage heart, are the peace principles of the gospel of Jesus Christ.
William Penn, the only son of Admiral Penn, was born in London, October 14, 1644. His early education was very carefully attended to, and in 1660 he entered Oxford University. His first bias towards the doctrines of the Society of Friends was produced by the preaching of Thomas Loe, the effect of which was, that Penn and some of his fellow-students withdrew from attendance on the public worship of the established church, and held private prayer meetings. They were fined by the college, but this did not deter them. The principles which he adopted displeased his father very much, who repeatedly banished him from his house; but when it appeared that his son's opinions were unalterable, a reconciliation took place between them. In 1668, he began to preach, and also published his first work, “ Truth Ex. alted.” Like many others of the early Friends, Penn was repeatedly thrown into prison; and during his confinement in the Tower of London, he wrote his most popular work, “ No Cross, no Crown,”—
—an able exposition of the views of his society. In 1670 the Conventicle act was passed, and Penn was one of the first sufferers under it. He was tried for preaching to what was called “a riotous and seditious assembly;" but the jury, in opposition to the direction of the bench, had the firmness and moral courage to give a verdict of acquittal.
We now come to the most important event of Penn's life,—the establishment of the colony of Pennsylvania. In 1681 a large tract of country on the west side of the Delaware was granted by Charles II. to Penn and his heirs, in consideration of a debt of £16,000 due from the Crown to Admiral Penn, for money advanced for the service of the navy. He set sail from Englan in August, 1682, in the ship Welcome, and arrived at Newcastle on the 27th of October, where he was hailed with acclamations by the Swedes and Dutch already there. Thence the colony proceeded up the river, and in the latter end of the year located the town and borough of Philadelphia, “having a high and dry bank next to the water, with a shore ornamented with a fine view of pine trees growing upon it.” Penn solemnly declared that he "came to the charge of the province for the Lord's sake.” “I wanted,” says he, “to afford an asylum to the good and oppressed of every nation. I aimed to form a government which might be an example. I desired to show men as free and happy as they could be. I had also kind views towards the Indians.”
In about two years Penn was called to return back to England; and from his intimacy with James II., he was enabled to procure the release of his Quaker brethren, of whom fourteen hundred and eighty were in prison at the accession of that monarch. Indeed he was perpetually engaged in deeds of kindness for his people, at the same time endeavoring to clear the way for his return, and to bring out his family to abide for life. But various obstacles hindered him from year to year, so that it was not till 1699 that he and his family embarked for America. They arrived in November, and were received with universal joy, on account of his known intention to stay for life. But in this intention he was overruled, partly by the owners of land in Pennsylvania, dwelling in England, who felt that Penn could plead their interests with the crown better than any other one; and partly by the female members of the family, who, after the style to which they had been accustomed, could not well bear the rude and unformed state of things in the new colony. He says in a letter to James Logan, July, 1701: “I cannot prevail on my wife to stay, and still less with Tishe. I know not what to do.” Accordingly he returned the latter part of that year; and after experiencing various vicissitudes, and especially the most heartless ingratitude from those whom he had most served, he died at his seat in Ruscombe, in Berkshire, July 30, 1718.
Penn was the author of numerous works, which were collected and published in 1726, in two volumes, folio. Besides the many able works in defence of the religious views of his sect, he wrote others which would be considered of more general interest. Of these are his “ Reflections and Maxims relating to the Conduct of Life.” It is doubtful whether any other work of the size can be found, containing so much sound, practical wisdom. The following is the preface to the same :
PREFACE TO HIS“ MAXIMS.
Reader, this Enchiridion I present thee with, is the fruit of solitude : : a school few care to learn in, though none instruct us better. Some parts of it are the result of serious reflection, others
1 His daughter Letitia.
2 A Greek word, compounded of en (ev), “in,” and cheir (Xelp), “the band," and corrcsponds to qur word “manual." See the same word in the selections from Quarles, page 188.