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(Addressed to the Rev. Thomas Robinson, late Vicar of St. Mary's, Leicester.)
MY DEAR FRIEND,-It is as you say. We love each other; we would gladly meet or write often, but our Lord, to whom we both belong, has appointed us different situations and business of His, which sometimes leaves us but little leisure to gratify our private personal inclinations. I feel that neither time, nor absence, nor silence weaken my affection for you; and I simply and readily believe, that your kindness for me is not lessened by my not seeing you, and not often writing. However, if I mistake not, I had the last word, till this letter by Mrs. Buxton brought me again in your debt. When it came, I was at Southampton. Mrs. Newton went the beginning of August with our dear sick Eliza, of whom I suppose you have heard. I could not follow her till the 6th instant. Is I spent a few pleasant days there, and we all came home on the 16th; then I found your letter. Thank you for it. Our child is very poorly; but the Lord does all things well, and will, I trust do well by her. May He give us grace to praise Him for our many mercies, and submission to His will under all trials!
I finished preaching on the ORATORIO in July; and all the time I can save is employed in preparing for the press. There will be fifty sermons, of which I have transcribed thirty-three. If I can get the other seventeen done in the course of the winter, so as to publish about Easter, it will be as much as I can expect. For sometimes I can scarcely write a page in a week—sometimes I can, in the same space, write two sermons, just as necessary affairs will permit. I have likewise the idea of a preface, which will be of some length; but I think the whole will be comprised in two moderate volumes. I am glad to hear that you will have a curate on your own account, as I have often feared you would be overdone. And I am glad likewise for myself, as it will make your coming to London more probable. My heart, house, and pulpit, will throw their doors wide open to you. You will let me know when you are coming, a little while beforehand. I shall be glad to introduce you to our Eclectic Society, which cannot be unless you are proposed at previous meeting.
Leicester is likely to be quite out of my reach. I keep no curate, supplies are difficult, travelling very expensive, if Mrs Newton and I go together, and we do not like to be separate, without an evident needs-be for it. Time was—but time flies. I am now growing oldish, and it does not quite suit me to scamper much about, and my station and service here is such, that I cannot with satisfaction to my mind, be often from the spot, where like a centinel I am placed. I have not been at Olney these two years. Our dear child was sent to the salt water by the physicians, and this determined our route. Leicester is a place to which my inclination would often travel with wings; but we must yield to the calls of duty; and the leadings of our Lord's providence. While the cloud rests, I wish to remain still-when the cloud moves I wish to follow its motion, for I do not like the thought of travelling in such a wilderness as this world without a guide: lest if I attempt to make a path for myself, I should miss my way, and wander into thickets of unknown consequences. I thank you for your little essay on preaching. You have stated the point with clearness and candour. Something may be said on both sides; but I think the most for extempore, supposing the provisoes
you mention, and avoiding what you would guard against. What we say is usually plainer, warmer, and more pointed than what we read-but the great fault is when we would make other people wear our shoes, without considering the size and shape of their feet. Let not him that speaketh despise him that readeth; and let not him that readeth, judge him that speaketh. Let each use his liberty, and allow to his brother the liberty which he claims for himself.
We join in our love to you and Mrs. Robinson. The Lord bless you and your children. My love is with all who love the Lord with you. Our particular friends you will salute as usual in our name.—I am indeed, yours affectionately
Sept. 20, 1785.
MY DEAR FRIEND,-Congratulate me on the good news I received yesterday, namely, that Mr. Robinson, of Leicester, is expected either to set out from thence, or to arrive here, the 24th instant. May the Lord make his journey safe, his visit comfortable to himself, pleasant and profitable to me and to many!
I think you would like to visit our Eclectic Society. Somebody told me that you had said so much. Our next meeting will be on the identical 24th instant; when I shall be glad to ask leave to introduce you among us on the subsequent meeting-December 8. But a fundamental statute of our Commonwealth will not allow my petition to be heard, much less granted (though we all much wish for your company), unless I can say, that I offer it by your express desire. If therefore you mean to favour us, you will please to favour me with a line before you come up.
Our long and intimate acquaintance warrant me, I presume, to hope that you will give the first preference to my pulpit. I therefore claim you for Sunday, the 30th, in the forenoon. I shall be glad likewise to hear you there on Wednesday, the 26th. But if both should not be convenient, or should be too much for me to ask, I would rather have you on Sunday.
I need not tell you, that we are under much suspense and anxiety for the welfare of our good king (Geo. III). The reports of his death were so strong a few days since, that we were almost forced to believe it. But through mercy he is still living. Much prayer has been made for him; and as prayer has been thus far answered, we are encouraged to hope for his recovery. I care not who thinks the case almost desperate, if the Lord God vouchsafes to hearken to the prayers of his people, "for to Him belong the issues from death." But we are shortsighted creatures; and therefore it becomes us to temper our petitions and desires with that thought, "nevertheless, not as I will, but as Thou wilt.”
6, Coleman St. Buildings. November 13, 1788.
Our love to Mrs. Robinson and all friends. Tell her we shall not be wanting to pray, that a blessing may rest upon her, upon your family and people, and that you may be restored to her and to them, in peace, at His good time.—I am sincerely, your affectionate and obliged friend and brother,
JOURNAL OF A RESIDENCE IN SCOTLAND, AND (OF A) TOUR THROUGH ENGLAND, FRANCE, GERMANY, SWITZERLAND, AND ITALY; WITH A MEMOIR OF THE AUTHOR, AND EXTRACTS FRCM HIS RELIGIOUS PAPERS. Compiled from the Manuscripts of the late HENRY B.MAC-ments,—and he certainly is an honest and LELLAN. (Continued from page 155). a great one,-standing prominent in the first rank, is Dr. Chalmers. The whole weight of his genius he has put forth on this subject, which he certainly manages
"Among the champions of establish
in a most magnificent, and, to many, a has aimed, and continues most strenuously most convincing manner. He certainly to aim, at the overthrow of many of its evils; and in his lectures to the young men who are to hold its parishes [he endeavours] to impregnate the machinery, not only with the proper energies, but with the proper spirit. He and some kindred minds, together with some other causes, give a much greater degree of warmth to religion in Scotland than would at first be supposed.'
These other causes" are dwelt upon in other parts of the letter; and the "conclusion" at which, with admirable nationality, he arrives, is that he and his friends should "esteem themselves most happy that they live in America."
In the following passage, Ireland and Dr. Butler are again brought into view.
Boston: Allen and Ticknor.
In our former notice of this work, we accompanied our author in two or three of his interviews with Dr. Chalmers. He repeated his visits, as we then mentioned, on several subsequent occasions; and the pleasure we derived from their former conversations, inclines us to listen again. The following relates to Butler's celebrated treatise on the "Analogy of Religion, Natural and Revealed;" which is much used in our own Universities, and much more in those of America.
A little farther on, in an excellent letter on the state of religion in Scotland, written by Mr. Maclellan to his friends, we have some further remarks on this subject.
"Took breakfast at nine with Dr.
Chalmers. Two other gentlemen [were] present, [and were] conversing on Butler as I entered. Dr. C. remarked, I am told Butler was thirty years composing his Analogy. That is the way, gentlemen, to be great. Concentration of mind to one object, leaves a durable monument, against which time makes his shocks in vain.' I remarked, that I was convinced of the force of his observation; that Gray by devoting eleven years to his Elegy,' had established a character for all ages; that certain of the Latin poets had immorta-thusiast; and perhaps there is ground for lized themselves by the genius stamped on a single ode or satire; [and the same] more especially among the Greeks; [and that] indeed, if of Athens there had but one
"Breakfasted with Dr. Chalmers. Found a few other gentlemen there, among whom was Mr. C, a gentleman of the church, who has been a missionary in Ireland. He is esteemed quite an en
it. He is for sending a vast body of missionaries through the land, to gain the affection and confidence of the people, and thus lead them to listen to the Gos
ruin remained, and that had been the Par-pel, and decide for themselves. The Docthenon and of Greece but one poemthat of Homer, Athens and Greece would
have lived forever. At breakfast we talked of reform, English establishments, American literature, and literary men. The Doctor is hardly a half-way reformer. He thinks reform is necessary, but that it should first be principally in education, and that the bands should be moderately and gradually loosed. On [the subject of establishments he, of course, took pretty high ground, allowing that great abuses existed, but insisting that they were much exaggerated, especially as respected tithing and salaries, which would apply to the Scottish clergy as well as to the English. If lawyers or [other] laymen had been in their places, four times as much would have been raised."
tor spoke of Butler again, in terms of admiration. 1 remarked that we employed it [his work] in our literary instias a text book. I then spoke of his [Dr. Chalmers's] views of the use to be made of the arguments (of Butler) as he had stated them in the lectureroom, as being, in my opinion, very striking and just, making men the pillars to support the vestibule; or, like the grand gateway and stern arches leading up to an impregnable citadel, impressing and overawing the mind, and preparing it to look on bulwarks more massive and defensible."
We can answer for Dr. Chalmers's views" being "just and striking," but we protest against Mr. Maclellans's ver
sion of them. Indeed we find ourselves | the Heart of MidLothian,' are situated on quite bewildered by the inflated pompo- the northern side of Salisbury Craigs. sities of this high-sounding passage; and Nothing can be more solitary than their if he inflicted it on the Doctor, we are situation on the wild hill-side, with savage quite sure the latter understood as little rocks and lonely dells around. The bare of it as ourselves; and after a good-na- and heavy walls of the shattered chapel, tured nod, and a “just so!" made his with the blue heavens seen on either side escape to some other subject. We sus-vered wall; through its unprotected windows, or shithe ruins that lay (lie) pect a misprint in the nonsensical pas-around; and the dark and silent hills that sage about the men in the vestibule. shut it in, all unite to yield a very striking They might do very well in an Egyptian contrast to the beautiful and active city temple, but are sadly out of place in Dr. from which you have just come. Butler's 66 Analogy." It should pro- Now for a literary feast. bably be," making them the pillars ;' -that is, the analogical arguments of Butler, which Dr. Chalmers regards not as adding anything of a positive nature to the Christian argument, but as being of essential service in clearing away jections. With this clue, our readers will probably be able to detect a vein of meaning running through the above paragraph, notwithstanding its manifold mystifications."
"In company with Mr Boyd, [an intelligent countryman of our author's, but with much less prate about him] I breakfasted with Dr. Chalmers. Fortunately we found the Doctor and his family alone. He was reading, as we entered, a new work by the talented author of the Saturday Evening;' of which he spoke Natural History of Enthusiasm,' called in terms of the highest admiration, warmly recommending us to read it. [Dr Chalmers's opinion of these and other works, by the same author, will be found at large in No 604 of the "Pulpit."] The Doctor was particularly bland and eloquent. He'conversed upon the present religious state of America, and his earnest desire to visit it; both to behold its splendid scenery, and to obtain a statistical account of its prosperity without an Establishment. He spoke also upon the propriety of endowing the literary institutions of our country [America] more liberally; and securing them in some way to real talent
We are next taken to the University; and are admited into the Divinity Hall. "Attended classes. Dr. Chalmers was peculiarly eloquent this forenoon. Never have I seen [heard] him more so. He was on the doctrine of Necessity; and passed a very beautiful eulogium on Jonathan Edwards, the great champion of the system. [This lecture formed one of five on Predestination, which have lately been given to the world, in a separate form, by our publisher, Mr. Robeson.] As the day was clear, I determined not that learning was not in itself reto scale the rocky heights of Arthur's spectable; but because the weight of an Seat. On my way I passed the house of overbearing wealth, and a degraded public Jeannie Deans; a little piece of which I sentiment, bore down unsustained learnbore off, as a token of my visit, as well as ing from its proper elevation; and so some grass growing under the window. much was this the case, that it could but The house is small, built of stone and ill keep its ground, unless it was fortified mortar. At one side, connected with it, by some subsidiary means. It might be are a few other houses, of a similar kind. a lamented necessity, but it certainly was It commands a fine view of the king's a necessity. In speaking of some of his park, Salisbury crags, and Arthur's seat." prefaces to various works [in Collins's (On another occasion he thus mentions the house of this celebrated heroine of Walter Scott's" Heart of Mid Lothian.") In returning, we passed by Jeannie Deans's house, on St. Leonard's, which almost filled my eyes with tears."
Series of Christian Authors'] we earnestly recommended him to publish an edition of Butler with one, as a most desirable thing, especially in America, where it was very generally read. As I walked with Doctor to the university, he gave me some idea of his views of inspiration. He thinks, that under a guarding superintendence, the writers were left, at
In another place we have an allusion to some other localities, rendered famous by the same fascinating work.
"The day was so pleasant, that though least in [some] places, to select their own our walk had already been long, we decid-language; and that so interwoven is the ed to visit [on visiting] Muschul's Cairn direct supernatural influence with the naand Anthony's Chapel, before our return. tural, that we cannot make a distinction." These, as everybody knows who has read
The meaning of this is, that we can
not point out what passages are due to
"Breakfasted with Mrs. Chalmers and her daughters. Sat an hour or two at the breakfast-table, talking about emancipation, and colonization, and slaves in general. She gave me her husband's view of one of the means to be used in procuring the "Called on Professor Wilson. Was freedom of these suffering creatures. Let ushered into his study: where, among a societies and benevolent indviduals pur-chaotic mass of books and papers, 1 found chase an additional day from their masters him reclining in an easy elbow chair. On for the slave; who, laying up the profits ordinary occasions, he appears careless of this day's work, will himself be able enough, but never did mortal appear to purchase another, and at length gain more so than then. His room was but the his entire freedom.' counterpart of himself-books, chairs, papers, and manuscripts, all in the oddest combination. In alluding to Bryant, whose works he had just received from Washington Irving (who has republished them with a beautiful preface), he remarked, I have just been reading Mr. B's poems, and I must reclaim the opinion I pronounced a day or two since, respecting him. I had then only just volume with great pleasure. He is, however, a different man from what I had thought. I expected much imagination, and less taste: but I find him very refined in his imaginations, and very classical in his taste. I wish I could get hold of more American authors. I have just re
This conversation took place before the late Emancipation Act was passed. It is now upwards of twenty years since Dr. Chalmers published his plan for the abolition of slavery-it was rejected on very proper grounds. First, that it made the slave pay for his own freedom—and, secondly, that it required too long a time. But it cannot but give rise to melancholy feelings, when we reflect, that if the plan had then been adopted, every industrious slave would long ere this have been free; so that praiseworthy feelings of justice to him, have had the unfortunate effect of prolonging his servitude and in a majority of those who were then at an adult age, of condemn-ceived two volumes of American poetry ing them to slavery for life. by Samuel Kettell, which I am looking over, and have found some very pretty matter in them. I wish I could learn more about American poets. I have seen some of Bryant's; a little of Percival's, a long time since; and'a pretty little work of' Pierpont's 'Airs of Palestine.' I mentioned to him among others, Mrs. Sigourney. O yes! I remember; I received a very good little volume from her; but lost her direction, and never could find it again.'
looked at them: I have since read the
At length our author had the pleasure of hearing the great man preach.
"In the afternoon, understanding that Dr. Chalmers was to preach at St. George's Church, Mr. H. and myself proceeded thither. We found a large crowd waiting in the ante-rooms and porch, while the regular sitters were taking their places, which is always customary at this, and some of the first churches. At length, with a strong but noiseless rush, we were borne into the aisles. The sermon was a most excellent one on prayer meetings. [Reported in No.491 of the "Pulpit."] The objections recently urged against prayer, and as a consequence against fasting-nery.
I spoke of Willock, Hallis, and some others. He told me he intended to obtain,if he could, a number of the American poets; and should notice them in Blackwood.' We then conversed about American sce
He expressed a strong desire to
an argument derived from the regularity of nature's sequencies were met by showing that this chain of causes and effects rises up far above our ken, until it reaches the throne of God. A certain unchanging region God has established for prudence and philosophy to walk in: but above this he moves, and thus moves all, and governs all, and becomes the Arbiter of every event of life—the Hearer and Answerer of prayer. The argument was a most triumphant one, and there were some beautiful touches in the discourse."
Before we leave Edinburgh, let us call on Mr. Wilson, professor of moral philosophy in the university, and editor We can of "Blackwood's Magazine." add our personal testimony to that of our author as to his affability.