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MRS. MARY TATHAM,
LATE OF NOTTINGHAM.
With a Portrait.
BY THE REV. JOSEPH BEAUMONT, M.D.
SIMPKIN & MARSHALL, STATIONERS' COURT.
JOHN MASON, 14, CITY ROAD, AND 66, PATERNOSTER ROW;
AND BY KIRK,. AND HOWITT, NOTTINGHAM.
The writer was well acquainted with the subject of these Memoirs, and had ample opportunities, supplied by personal intercourse, of forming an accurate opinion of her character, religious attainments, and usefulness. It fell to his lot to be requested and urged by Mrs. Tatham's bereaved husband and children, to preach her Funeral Sermon; and on that occasion he was put in possession of materials in writing, from the nature and extent of which, he could entertain no doubt, that some memorial of her life and piety should be produced, of a more permanent form, and admitting of a wider diffusion than a sermon. And, accordingly, when entreated to undertake the task of preparing a suitable account for the press, that many beyond the circle in which Mrs. Tatham had been personally known might behold the light reflected from, and glorify God in her, the writer felt that such an application he could not decline, and hence have arisen the following pages.
Memoirs have, perhaps, never been more abundantly furnished than of late ; yet it is presumed that very few are to be had, which delineate female character distinguished by eminent piety during so long a period, or supplying so full and well-sustained a portraiture of an “old disciple,” as that which is here presented.
There are, no doubt, many ex iences and attainments common to all true Christians alike, so that the portraiture of one is that of a multitude; still it may be affirmed, with perfect justness, that whilst the heart of one man answereth to another, even as in water face answereth to face, there are individual varieties of mental and spiritual condition, as there are of physical conformation and external features, which render each man's experience his own, and not another's. The kind of excellence which belongs to one saint belongs to all ; but the degrees in which it is experienced, the circumstances connected with its attainment, and the forms, and modes, and fulness in which it is developed and reflected, may be, and often are, somewhat various. The instance now presented is one in which there was a high degree of Christian experience, and a force and clearness of manifestation, by which the subject of it was declared to be an “ epistle of Christ, written with the Spirit of the living God.”
But little has been required of the writer in the execution of his task beyond the duties of an editor, as the manuscripts left by Mrs. Tatham being so numerous as to furnish a clear, and it is thought not uninteresting, detail of the way in which the Lord her God led her seventy years in the wilderness, to humble her, to prove her, and to know what was in her heart, whether she