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recreation that he indulged in, was a walk into the church when there was no service, as far as the great tree in the neighbour- or remaining in the burying-ground after ing abbey grounds, after performing this the funeral was over; and, once I was so service.
unlucky as to be caught upon the leads of Twice a week, besides the sabbath and the church, after the ringers had left the holidays, the prayer-bell required his atten- belfry. On this occasion, after a severe tion ; for he added the office of parish- handling in the capture, he brought his clerk to that of sexton, or held them jointly prisoner before the priest : this last affair with his son, of the same name; and then left such a horror, both of the place and of he generally had the rope in his hand, the parties, as to have a salutary effect; but when the clock struck six, to ring the even- it was long ere I got rid of my deeping bell.
rooted grudge both against the minister and His other avocations were of a still graver sexton, nature. Tolling the death-bell sometimes John Brown was not a sexton of the occasioned him to climb the belfry late at description portrayed in Blair's Grave. ] night, in winter as well as summer; and will not cite a line of that often-quoted an alarm of fire would at any hour imme- poem; for, though exquisitely drawn, it is diately call him to his post, to give the not the character I am describing. Inneedful summons. But habit had rendered deed, they have scarcely any thing in comhim proof against those fears, which to mon, except a knowledge of their profession. some minds would have peopled the old John Brown was not that facetious being, church, at such seasons, with ghostly in- whose disposition is so little in keeping habitants.
with his avocations. “Clerk's ale” is gone Digging of graves is an employment out of fashion now, and, save the Easter which, to most men, would be extremely dues, little remains of the old customs. On revolting ; it is, however, what all will allow occasion of going his annual round at this to be necessary; it was, moreover, John's festival, he washed his earthly hands, and business, and he went about it with avidity. appeared comfortable in his person. Yet This is, in all respects, a serious occupa- he was neither a droll nor a toper, but a tion, and, what is perhaps but little con- stern and trusty man; and I am persuaded, sidered, a very important one. No small that if every churchyard had a sentinel as unskill certainly is necessary, in many church- compromising as was John Brown, a resuryards, and Hexham is one of them, so to rection-man would have but "few temptainter the dead, as not to disinter those who tions to violate” the sanctuary of the dead. had been recently buried.
When old John drew near his end, he John knew as well as any man the diffi- conducted himself with more than his culties of his profession, and, it seems, it usual gravity, and discovered a disposition had its mysteries too; for, though he did the very reverse of ostentatious. It is the not by any means encourage the inquiries custom of the bell-ringers in Hexham, and of the curious on these points, he sometimes probably in other places, on the death of let fall an intimation of certain liberties any of their number, to honour them with which, circumstanced as he was, he no a mufiled peal at the funeral ; and, as doubt too often found it convenient to take John was one of the eight, this tribute was with his subjects! “No one knows a his due, independently of his more important sexton's duties but a sexton,” he would say; offices, which entitled him to still greater and few, we are persuaded, have discharged distinction. Indeed, when his long and them better. He was always about his faithful services are taken into the account, business. If not employed in digging a I do not know that half the parish would grave, or burying the dead, his mattock have considered it too high a token of was at work knocking down the weeds, regard, to have attended his funeral. But collecting fragments of broken coffins, or John, it seems, did not relish parade; and removing exhumated bones from the surface in his circumstances, it is to be hoped that of the grave-yard.
his thoughts were employed on more proHis most prominent and, at the same fitable subjects than the anticipation of time, praiseworthy characteristic was, at- posthumous honours. Certain it is, that he tention to the duties of his calling; and his forbad the accustomed peal, and discou. care to prevent the interference of unqua- raged the intention of any unnecessary lified and prying persons, was scarcely less ceremony. “I have been a plain man all remarkable. Many a time have I dreaded my life," said he, to those around him, his frown; and more than once felt the “ and I wish to bé buried in a plain manweight of his heavy hand. Sometimes I ner—and hope you will make no needless have fallen under his displeasure, for getting fuss about me.'
This prohibition was a source of disap
POETRY pointment to many, and even to me, who by this time had got the better of my boy
TO THE STARS. ish antipathy; and would have had some
Ye midnight wonders of the firmament, special notice taken of a man who had Bespangling heaven's high arch with light serene,
In countless millions scattered through the sky; been so especially useful to society. But
Whence flows the lustre which ye there display John had given his protest against it, and In silver streams? Whence sprang ye into being ? his injunction was carefully observed. This What power sustains you in your vast abode,
Stedfastly fixed, nor suffers you to rush respectable old man had, however, the sin
In wild confusion through ethereal space, gular honour to be buried by his own two Commingling, clashing, uncontrolled. sons; he had initiated them into the mys
The scintillations of the Eternal Mind, teries of his calling, and they have been Which glancing upon chaos, thence struck out fortunate enough to succeed him respect
Your ever-burning sparks of trembling flame?
Does He uphold you in your beauty there? ively in his offices of parish clerk and
Ye still proclaim that harmony divine sexton.
With which ye pealed your anthems loud to heaven, It may not be amiss, in closing this
And sang together morning songs of joy,
To celebrate creation's birth. Ye still sketch, to glance at an event, in itself in- Your nightly visitations pay to earth, teresting, but rendered still more so as it As when Chaldean shepherds watched your course
Beneath unclouded skies, and told your names opened the way to John Brown's introduc
In humble phrase, and on your forms sublime tion to that station, which he occupied in Gazed-lost in wonder, sacred awe, and joy. such a creditable manner for a period little
Say,_are ye lights of undiscovered worlds ?
Does each of you light up a universe, short of half a century. He came into And thus become the nourisher of life office when Francis Bell died. Poor old To mortal beings of a mould like ours,
Or bright immortals who have never sinned ? Frank, whatever might have been his faults,
Or are ye globes of slumbering fire, restrained seems to have discharged his official duties From falling down in vengeance on our heads with scrupulous attention, and a laudable
By mercy's hand, reserved against the day
When mercy's plea shall cease, the day of wrath, pride, and he died at his post.
When God shall seal the changeless doom of all ? He had climbed the belfry, one Sunday Or, though but dimly seen by mortal eye, morning, as usual, to ring for church, and
Are ye the gems that deck the throne of God,
Or glitter in his footstool? Is your light had sat down, as is customary, after reach- The dim reflection of the glories there, ing the ringing-loft, to recover from the
Where angels veil their faces ?
O that I fatigue of ascending the long winding stairs.
On some swift seraph-wing could tower aloft One of the band observed, that all hands To your resplendent regions, 'till this earth
Were lost in distance, and our flaming sun, were there, the clock had struck ten, and
Left far behind, became a speck like you. they had better set in. There are eight What worlds on worlds would burst upon my sight! bells in Hexham church; seven of the
What streaming glory pour on every side!
Could I alight on some far distant globe, ringers were at their stands, and all won- Now glimmering on perception's utmost verge, dered that the old man
was inactive. Myriads would seem to me as far removed “ Come, Frank,” said some of them.
As when from earth I took my 'aspiring flight.“
And should I wing again, from thence, my way Frank was silent--all eyes were turned to To where the faintest luminary shines, him; he had leaned his head against the
Still there ten thousand times ten thousand orbs,
Around, above, beneath, beyond, would glow. wall, and they thought he slept. He slept
But could I there my pinions wider spread, indeed—but waked no more! On old And darting, flee beyond creation's bounds, Frank's death, his son, of the same name,
Where I could soar above your dwindling spheres,'
Sweep o'er creation's circumscribed extentbecame a bell-ringer; and it is somewhat What there would my enraptured vision fill ? remarkable, that he, too, died in the church, Pervading, governing, encircling all.
In uncreated space ! Nought-nought but God ! in ascending the same bell-loft of which we
I lose myself in him.-Then, daring soul, have had occasion to speak already; and Contract thy wing, nor tempt th' immense profound, in a manner-still more deplorable. Thirty
Where Deity absorbs inquiring thought;
Where thou—art nothing.–Turn again to earth years have elapsed since; but it is, perhaps, Thy narrow place of pilgrimage below; still too soon to enter into a minute detail There look to Him who deigns to hear thy prayer, of the circumstances.
And, humble in the dust, adore that love
Which 'midst unnumbered worlds-remembers thee. EPITAPH ON AN OLD SEXTON-INTENDED
King's Cross, July 4th, 1832.
W. TAGG. Truly thy hand, relentless Death, spares none, When e'en thy servants share the common doom ; The hoary sexton from his post is gone; He drops his spade, and finds himself a tomb.
THE MORAL REFORM BILL. Peace to the dead! and sacred be this grave
(Spoken at a Sunday School, June, 1832.) Gently, 0 earth,
receive him to thy breast: Let each sweet fluw'ret o'er his ashes wave,
To this age of refinement, research, and reform Who laid a thousand of his kind to rest.
We all are expected of course to conform ;
But while a political regeneration,
So fully has worked in our representation,
Why we should not attempt human errors to cure
FOR JOHN BROWN.
To the friends of Reform, here assembled to day, In behalf of the measure, allow me to say, That inward corruption which all must deplore, Will now be permitted to triumph no more. Disfranchise the boroughs where venal election Has met with the certain reward of detection, And retain those alone where true principle reigns, And vital religion her station maintains. I trust that the house my desire will fulfil And I, therefore, petition to bring in the Bill. July 18th, 1832.
E. G. B.
Remains as a question I long to debate,
But pray, Mr. Speaker, permit me to say,
them, Who knows that no general rule is without them; But there are some places that royal donation Has raised to an eminent scale in the nation : Now these, Mr. Speaker, I glory to say, In my bill will retain a proportionate sway. We know that the members they wish to return Will have wisdom to govern, and hearts to discern. Tho' few are their numbers,-some dozen or score, Such a parliament never assembled before ; They alone can preserve us a pure constitution And set at defiance a mad revolution. But for the remainder, I venture to say, You'll disfranchise them all without any delay; Indeed, their corruption is now so complete, Such bribery, juggling, and open deceit, That not even Old Sarum can with them compare, Such ruin and wild desolation are there. Yet still were all these at the time of creation Possessed of a good and pure representation.
In the Schedule A, I propose to combine All such as their members must henceforth resign. The first in this list is the borough of Joy, Where folly and vice the electors employ. Then Fear, that degraded and dastardly spot, Where Fate gives the fiat, and God is forgot. Next, Friendship, where once pure integrity reign'd, But where interest now governs, while worth is
disdain'd. Fidelity, where is thy former renown, Thy zeal for the cau of the chi nd the crown? But now on the laws thou hast impiously trod, And allegiance renounc'd to thy king and thy God. Then Honour, what ties in thy confines can bind, Where murder and rapine thy plaudits can find ? Where the duellist dares in cold blood to contend, And the gamester exults in the wreck of his friend.
To pass by some others, the next in rotation, (I venture to call them a close corporation,) Are all the Five Senses--what havoc is here? Of what had been virtuous and sacred and dear! The Sight is corrupted by vainly dressed show, And every disgraceful temptation below. The Hearing, what folly and flattery seize, That seek not to counsel, but only to please. The Feeling diffusive thro' every nerve Effeminate softness and indolence serve. The Smell, which pure odours were wont to employ, Art leads to corruption, and seeks to destroy: To the Taste what idolatrous homage is paid, What sums are expended, what banquets are made.
I shall now, Mr. Speaker, proceed to explain What boroughs my Bill will propose to retain, Since so many corruptions in nature abound, And no genuine virtue is there to be found, We must take those few places that royal donation Has rais'd to an eminent scale in the nation. Faith here will stand first, where the charter supplies A mansion of glory and bliss in the skies. To ev'ry elector whose actions conform To the rules of religion and moral reform. And Hope, which possesses a prospect as sure Of eternal salvation to such as endure; With unshaken allegiance thro' good and thro' ill, And the laws of their great Benefactor fulfil. Then Charity, brightest and best of the train, Where Philanthropy, Love, and Benevolence reign, Whose charter enjoins all its subjects to prove That the fabric of virtue is founded on love. Next fervent Devotion, Zeal, Patience, and Prayer, With Humility, Grace, and Experience are there ; Each willing to aid in reforming the nation By the best of all methods, pure representation.
Then shall we need no mother's care. Carlinghow New Hall, May 1st, 1832. J. W,
JESUS THE FAIREST OF THE FAIB. WEARIED with this delusive show, From earth to heaven, I fain would go; From this world's wilderness I'd flee And hold communion, Lord, with thee. Jesus, my Lord, my life, I'll prize; 'Tis Thou alone canst make me wise : Oh ! let me of thy beauties share, For thou art fairest of the fair! I'll love thee, O my Saviour, long As thou in mercy dost prolong My life, and may I ever be United closely, Lord, to Thee. Oh! may this union be complete, And may I thy protection meet, While here below thy goodness share, For Thou art fairest of the fair ! Encompass'd by my Saviour's arms, Enraptur'd by his heavenly charms, My soul would lie on Jesu's breast, And there enjoy unruffled rest. O may I never from Thee roam, Jesus, my Lord, my heavenly home! O make me thy peculiar care, For Thou art fairest of the fair! May I the glories now set forth Of thine inestimable worth: May I thy preciousness reveal, Thy ardent, unexampled zeal. Yes, Lord, I'll praise Thee while I've breath, And, when about to sink in death, The glories of thy grace declare, For Thou art fairest of the fair !
REVIEW. Select Library. Vol. VI. arrived at the island of Onartok. Here they dis
Ву Lives of Eminent Missionaries.
covered a warm spring, at the mouth of which
was a beautiful green meadow, adorned with many John Carne, Esq. 12mo. pp. 352. flowers, a sight very uncommon in this country. Fisher, Son, and Co. London. 1832. They, took up their residence at a short distance,
and called the place Lichtenau. Within the cir
cuit of a few miles, it was supposed there were There is scarcely any employment more about a thousand inhabitants, so that there was consonant with the Christian character, than an ample field for labour. In the course of a few that of endeavouring to diffuse the light months, it began to be successful; and after some
years, a larger congregation was collected at Lichof revelation among the benighted inba- tenau than in either of the ancient settlements. bitants of the world. To those indeed who In 1786, they had the misfortune to lose Koniglook not beyond mere animal gratification, plied in some measure by Frederic Rudolf; one
seer; a death felt greatly, but his place was supall such attempts appear visionary and of the most memorable events in whose career was enthusiastic; and those who engage in the
a storm, to which he was exposed with his wife
and child : noble enterprise are considered as fools and “ Early in the morning, after leaving Litchtemadmen, who merit the mingled emotions nau, a violent wind arose, which drove the ice
mountains close to their ship. Anticipating the of pity and contempt.
concussion, the captain sprung into the small boat, Very different, however, do these efforts with part of the crew, and, landing them on
large field of ice, returned for another party; appear in the estimation of men who are
but ere the latter could come back, the shock taught of God, and who believe that all
took place, the iceberg hung over the ship his promises shall receive their utmost ful- like the demon of the waters, whose only mesfilment. Actuated by the same spirit, we
sage is to destroy. • The scene,' says Rudolf,
was awful and horrible. The captain and all the behold the Missionary leaving his com- sailors having abandoned the ship, my wife and I fortable home, his native land, with all the
were left alone above our knees in water, holding
fast by the shrouds. Every moment the ice mouncharms and endearments of civilized so
tain, with its shivered peaks and trembling preci. ciety, to spend his days among savages,
pices, drew nearer, and every moment we expected suffer innumerable privations, and expose
to be crushed to pieces. At last Captain Keir came
at great hazard, saying, I cannot possibly forsake his life to danger, having no other object these good people. We were now twenty-eight in view than that of bringing souls to
miles from Lichtenau; our boat was heavily laden
with men and baggage, the sea broke over us Christ, and expecting only to be recom- continually, and the steersman, fearing the boat pensed in the resurrection of the just. would sink, made for the nearest island. It Mingling with human beings in various proved to be a rough, pointed, and naked rock,
deeply excavated in many places by the dashing stages of darkness, the records which have of the breakers. After ascending some height, been preserved of missionary adventures in
however, we found a small spot covered with low
grass. the wilds of America, the sultry climate of " • We now endeavoured to land our provisions, India, and the frozen regions of the North, but the waves beat frightfully against the rock, render their account particularly interest
so that the boat broke from her moorings, and
was hurried out to sea. Eight men immediately ing. In each zone the inhabitants have pushed off in the small boat, in the hope of retheir peculiar characteristics; and in the covering her : they succeeded in overtaking her,
but the fury of the storm, which whirled the waves estimation of the reader, the interest ex
like smoke through the air, baffled all their efforts cited is considerably augmented by the to regain the landing-place. They were driven to contrast which the travels of different Mis
the other side of the island amongst foaming break
ers, and we beheld with horror both our boats sionaries exhibit.
crushed to pieces. All our hopes now vanished, This volume includes the lives of Eliot,
and the whole company gave themselves up to
loud cries and lamentations, seeing no other prosSwartz, Crantz, Hans Egede, Kiernander, pect than that of miserably' perishing by hunger Hocker, and several others of exalted ce- on this naked rock. In the evening we lay down
to rest without tent or covering; I clasped my lebrity; and whether we follow them among
wife in my arms, covered her with part of my the wandering Indians of the western con- garments, and strove to give her a hope which I tinent, the Hindoos of Asia, or the forlorn did not feel myself. We were wet through, and inhabitants of Greenland, the memorials
lay in a pool of water. As it rained heavily and
incessantly during the whole of this and the folare replete with incident, animated with lowing day and night, the water flowed down in
torrents from the summit of the rock. descriptive pathos, and enlivened with
the 26th, the captain, the mate, and the rest of many striking delineations of character.
the crew, made an attempt to gain the shore, by Among this diversity, many humorous walking across the ice. They went on from one
floating fragment to another, till they came to the occurrences present themselves, intermingled plain of solid ice: we watched them long, and with others that are awfully tragical. The would gladly have ventured along with them, but, following narrative of unparalleled distress, having fasted for two days, we were conscious that
we could not bear the fatigues of such a journey. endured by the Moravians on the coast We were now alone on the rock. of Greenland, will be perused with sympa- "w"Whenever the sun shone, we employed ourthetic interest :
selves in drying the few things we had saved from
the wreck ; but we were at last so enfeebled by “ In the year 1774, Sørensen and Grillich, two hunger, that we were scarcely able to do even that, of the Brethren, sailed from Lichtenfels, with the having nothing to support life but fresh water colview of founding a third settlement in the south lected in the holes and crannies in the rock. In of Greenland. After a voyage of six weeks, they this dreadful situation, Anna and I strove to ex?
fort each other; sometimes we wept bitterly, and in tangible characters, the awful consesaid, how could we bear to see each other die? I
quences of a lukewarm, or an apostatizing prayed that I might be taken first; I could not bear to see the wife of my bosom perish miserably before spirit. my eyes. We felt that our daily hope and trust
The seven Asiatic churches mentioned in was in the Lord; we believed that he would not forsake us. All day long we looked out towards the Apocalypse, were once brilliant with the opposite shores, in the hope of descrying some gospel light, but their declension was noted one coming to our rescue, but we could see nothing by the voice of inspiration, and, without but an endless and dismal spectacle of ice, and waves yet more cruel. No Greenlanders came, timely repentance, their final desertion by and we gave way to the dreadful suspicion that
the Divine influence was plainly foretold. the ship's crew had perished on the road. The thoughts of lying here unburied troubled us greatly Unhappily, this friendly warning produced at first: the ravens and sea-fowl were constantly no salutary effect; their predicted ruin hovering round us, and seemed impatient for their
therefore followed as a natural consequence, prey. But, after a while, we felt resigned to the will of God.
and Mr. Milner here invites us to survey with “'At length, Anna happening to raise herself him the scene of desolation, up from the hard couch on which our emaciated limbs were laid, espied two Greenlanders in their The primitive state of these Asiatic kajaks drawing near, and hailing us. A new life
churches, their vicissitudes, decline, and instantly seemed to animate our mind and body ;
present condition, the author traces with we climbed to the summit of the rock, and shouted with all our might to make ourselves heard. It unwearied diligence, commendable fideappeared that these men were sent by the captain, lity, and suitable talents. In every step and had rowed about the island the whole day, but, seeing no person upon it, were just about to we accompany him with increasing inreturn, concluding that we were dead. If my dear terest, and, in the result, behold a picture wife had not raised her head from the rock at that
enveloped with immoveable clouds of moment, while I was buried in sleep, we had surely been the prey of the fowls of the air. From gloom, and exhibiting in every direction them we received a few herrings, after being with- the silence of despair. The fate of these out food for nine days. But, as the Greenlanders had
fallen churches holds out an awful monu. no boat with them besides their kajaks, we were obliged to remain upon the rock till the next day, ment to the Christian world. What was when they said they would return for us. We
true of them, under similar circumstances, watched the boats disappear with a could not restrain; it seemed as if this visit was may be considered as equally true in reonly to mock us with vain hopes. Anna, who had ference to all others. They present a mirborne all our sufferings with more fortitude than myself, was now moved like a child to complain
ror to the eye of serious reflection, and a and weep. All the next day we watched for the lesson of wisdom may be learnt from the return of the Greenlanders, and never took off our
contemplation. eyes from the spot where they had last disappeared ; but it was not till evening that they came.
Independently of the occurrences which woman's boat arrived for us, rowed only by the relate immediately to these churches, this women, who helped us down the rocks with great volume presents to the reader many histokindness. On the 4th we came to an island, where we found the greater part of the crew. rical fragments which have been scattered They had suffered) extreme hardships, for they
on the stream of time, and traces to their were quite) emaciated. It was many days before we could return to Litchtenau, where we were
source numerous incidents, which, though received with the most affectionate welcome.'”- originating in superstition, found a genial pp. 285-289.
soil in tradition, and, deriving a passport A work which abounds with incidents from age, are received by the unreflecting, not less interesting than the preceding as truths which it would be sacrilegious to extract, requires only to be known, to secure dispute. Of this description is the marnational popularity.
vellous tale of the “ Seven Sleepers,” which, having found its way into our nurseries,
seizes the infant in its cradle, and secures Review.— History of the Seven Churches easily be dispossessed.
an early lodgment, of which it cannot
This traditionary of Asia, with Notices of several others; legend the author thus relates :designed to show the Fulfilment of Prophecy. By the Rev. T. Milner, “ There is indeed a story relating to Ephesus, A.M. 8vo. pp. 388. Holdsworth and during the persecution of Decius, told by Gibbon Ball.
with considerable naivete, which may here be noted. London. 1832.
When the emperor persecuted the Christians, seven There is something in the names of these
noble youths of Ephesus concealed themselves in
a cavern, where they were immured by the tyrant venerable churches, which renders every with a barrier of formidable stones. They immebranch of their history deeply interesting to
diately fell into a deep slumber, which lasted for the
astounding period of one hundred and eighty-seven christian readers, without regard to creed, years.
At last the slaves of Adolius, to whom the sect, or denomination. We seem to enter inheritance of the cave had descended, removed the sepulchres of the mighty dead, and,
some of the stones for building-materials, when the
Seven Sleepers were aroused. Being hungry, they while treading on the ashes of fallen great- despatched lamblichus, one of their number, to the ness, and mourning over the instability of city
to procure food ; when the altered appearance every thing beneath the sun, to contemplate, baker, and his long beard, led to a discovery of the
of Ephesus, the age of the coin he presented to the