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was kindly and hospitably entertained by the gentleman, to whom he applied, and not only liberally assisted for the present, but dismissed with a promise of a future provision for his clothing and maintenance while at college. This promise was punctually performed, but the relief came too late. Person survived this visit but a few weeks. On his return to Cambridge, he was unable to perform his college duties, and continued daily to decline, though tenderly watched and nursed in the house of a friend, till the 11th of October 1818, when he expired. His death was as gentle as his life. No wild and tumultuous passions disturbed the holy calm of either.'

It is some solace to our grief for those, whose lives have been long and eminently useful, that the good they have done lives after them. There are numberless memorials of the genius and worth of truly excellent men, which remind us continually that they have been; and while any of these remain, they can hardly be said to have died. The form of their existence only seems to be changed. It was the mind that we valued and that is still seen reforming, instructing, delighting mankind. But when the lot of death falls upon a young man, who has given proof of generous ambition supported by uncommon powers, we feel that we have sustained a loss of unknown extent. There is full room for the imagination to weary itself in tracing that future, which now can never be. What we before anticipated we lament, as if we had actually possessed it. We think little of the accidents, which might have occasioned a more painful disappointment than even death. If we had before any doubts, they vanish now; and we think ourselves certainly deprived of what we had only a distant and uncertain prospect of enjoying. But this disposition is proportioned to the nearness of our interest and the degree in which it is peculiar. The mother, mourning for a beloved child, can never be persuaded that he would not have possessed every virtue, which a parent's heart could wish. The soldier, disappointed of a battle, never doubts, that he should have returned from the field covered with glory. The merchant, whose ship is driven back by tempests, counts up his gains, and deplores his hard fortune in the loss of them no less than if they had already made a part of his store. When, on the other hand, it is the promised scholar, divine or statesman, whose expected public services death

forbids us longer to look for, there is little liveliness of regret in any, but those who feel the warmth of personal affection. Others, however well assured of the reasonableness of the hopes, which had been formed, consider themselves as only remotely concerned in the event. Had he been long the object of their trust and confidence, had they been accustomed to rely on him in times of danger, had they experienced the benefit of his instructions or his benevolent labours, gratitude would claim a tear, and they would follow him to the grave with a heavy heart. The aged patriot or philanthropist may have done all that in reason he could be expected to do. Every talent, he possessed, may have produced some useful and lasting effect. We may be deprived of nothing but the sight of a form, venerable by age, and worn out with exertion. Still, there is a feeling, superior to interest and calculation, which fills us with melancholy, and a oppressive grief when such an one is gathered to an honourable tomb. world is not so ungrateful as many would represent it. Envy and jealousy may oppress and obscure while living, but the fault is sure to be redeemed, in a succeeding generation, by an ample measure of honour and fame.


A public sorrow for the dead must be earned by being really useful. The promise of being so may cause some regret in those, who are thoroughly persuaded that the promise would have been performed. But it is a cold and interested sorrow, very different from that, which spontaneously bursts forth when the grave closes over one, whose life has been a common blessing. Those, however, who have diligently employed even a few years in laying a foundation for future usefulness, have not lived in vain. A faithful narrative of their patient, persevering labour, their zeal in seeking all valuable knowledge, and their praiseworthy desire of excellence, may excite and direct others. Such narratives, too, make even strangers feel something of the same interest, to which we have just alluded, as belonging to those, who are bound to the deceased by some peculiar tie. It is one of the principal uses of biography, that, by exhibiting the common occupations, thoughts, feelings, designs, attachments, and aversions of the subject of it, it infuses the feelings of private and personal friendship into every reader. Hence the aid, which this sort of writing derives from familiar letters, coming warm from the heart, and artlessly disclosing the inmost workings of the soul and

the affections. We are often most pleased to gather the incidents of a life from such letters. The hero tells his own story. We seem to live and converse with him, and thus acquire that familiar acquaintance, which makes every fact important, that has any influence on his happiness. The letters contained in this volume, though comprising a short period, not much enlivened by adventures, can hardly fail to give a lively and pleasing impression of the writer's mind. Some of them are the letters of a very young man, but of one remarkable for maturity of understanding, and placed in circumstances, which command our sympathy. We witness the gradual progress of his reason; we see it expanding and acquiring strength. We see him suffering poverty and privation, and disease, yet still applying himself to study, with unbending resolution. We see him surrounded by the most discouraging difficulties, yet still maintaining, for the most part, an unbroken cheerfulness. • At one time,' he says in a letter to a friend, I look forward to the termination of my literary course with pleasant and hopeful expectation; at another, a thousand difficulties intrude and oppose my passage to the temple of science." Hope and perseverance, however, still keep uppermost; and, strengthened and encouraged by the exercise of these principles, I may struggle through the rough road of poverty and trial, and finally obtain my destined object.' (p. 89.)

In a subsequent letter, written soon after attaining the age of twenty-one, he complains of the difficulty of shaking off boyish habits; but as a proof that he had his serious moments, he adds an ode to Contemplation, from which we select the following lines:

Shew me the green, delightful bower,
Where friendship passed the happy hour,
While pure, its little realm;

Show me the hills, the trees, and fields,
The plants and flowers the garden yields,
And venerable elm.

Nor here abate thy fancied course,

But inward fly with filial force,
And search the lov'd domain ;
O'er every inmate gently bend,
And say of each, "here lives a friend,
And such will e'er remain !"

O happy thought! O heavenly power!
That thus can charm the lonely hour,
And soothe my pensive breast!

Be thou, Imagination, near,

For absent joys, do thou appear,

And lull my cares to rest!' pp. 92, 93.

There are several poetical pieces in this volume, some of a light and others of a graver cast. They discover, in general, a good taste and a facility of expression. Most of them were written before he went to Cambridge. Had he lived, it is probable he would before long have ceased to cultivate this talent; for it is evident, that he was not destined to acquire fame as a poet. We shall insert but one further specimen of his poetry. It is an ode to Reflection, written at Providence, May 1817.

The sun in the west is slowly descending,

And day's lucid visions recede from our view,
While night's sable curtain is gently extending
To envelop the world in darkness anew.

How sweet is it then to indulge recollection,
To prove the kind bondage of memory's chain;
The present forego, and in fond retrospection
Live over the scenes of our childhood again.

The sun of our life, how bright at its rising!
Unobscured by a cloud it darted its ray!
And in lustre, to youth's ardent hope most enticing,
Portended a brilliant and peace-ruling day!

How sweet was our friendship, how pure were our pleasures,
How fond our attachments in youth's glowing age!
Untaught to succumb to adversity's pressures,

Or feel the keen blastings of envy and rage.

How Fancy's bland visions conspired to invite us,
And joy in prospective perennial held!
But alas! her illusions soon ceased to delight us,
And dark disappointment her radiance veiled.

Now tossed on the billows of life's troubled ocean,
While hope faintly beams on each sorrow-fraught wave,
We wait for that rest to succeed the commotion,

Which heaven preludes in the sleep of the grave!'

pp. 186, 187.

We would not be thought to offer this work as possessing any important claims to the attention of the literary world. It is modest and unpretending, and taken for what it professes to be, the history of a youth of amiable and excellent character, of extraordinary powers of mind, and animated by an irrepressible zeal for knowledge and usefulness, we trust it will not be found barren of amusement or profit. We may sum up the history of Person in his own words- a poor mechanic, wholly destitute of pecuniary means to assist himself, without parents or friends to aid him, unfavoured by any efficient patronage, and going too among strangers, sought an education; succeeded; has actually passed its first stage, and is commencing its second, in the first literary institution in the country! Never let one despair of success in a similar enterprize hereafter!"

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