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attained, or any use to be answered by the exertion. A child, without knowing anything of the use of language, is in a high degree delighted with being able to speak. Its incessant repetition of a few articulate sounds, or perhaps of the single word which it has learned to pronounce, proves this point clearly. Nor is it less pleased with its first successful endeavours to walk, or rather to run (which precedes walking), although entirely ignorant of the importance of the attainment to its future life, and even without applying it to any present purpose. A child is delighted with speaking, without having anything to say; and with walking, without knowing where to go. And, prior to both these, I am disposed to believe that the waking hours of infancy are agreeably taken up with the exercise of vision, or perhaps, more properly speaking, with learning to see.
But it is not for youth alone that the great Parent of creation hath provided. Happiness is found with the purring cat no less than with the playful kitten; in the arm-chair of dozing age, as well as in either the sprightliness of the dance or the animation of the chase. To novelty, to acuteness of sensation, to hope, to ardour of pursuit, succeeds what is, in no inconsiderable degree, an equivalent for them all, perception of ease.' Herein is the exact difference between the young and the old. The young are not happy but when enjoying pleasure; the old are happy when free from pain. And this constitution suits with the degrees of animal power which they respectively possess. The vigour of youth was to be stimulated to action by impatience of rest; whilst to the imbecility of age, quietness and repose become positive gratifications. In one important step the advantage is with the old. A state of ease is, generally speaking, more attainable than a state of pleasure. A constitution, therefore, which can enjoy ease, is preferable to that which can taste only pleasure. This same perception of ease oftentimes renders old age a condition of great comfort, especially when riding at its anchor after a busy or tempestuous life. It is well described by Rousseau to be the interval of repose and enjoyment between the hurry and the end of life. How far the same cause extends to other animal natures, cannot be judged of with certainty. The appearance of satisfaction with which most animals, as their activity subsides, seek and enjoy rest, affords reason to believe that this source of gratification is appointed to advanced life under all or most of its various forms. In the species with which we are best acquainted, namely, our own, I am far, even as an observer of human life, from thinking that youth is its happiest season, much less the only happy one.
A new and illustrated edition of Paley's 'Natural Theology' was published in 1835, with scientific trations by Sir Charles Bell, and a preliminary discourse by Henry Lord Brougham.
DR RICHARD WATSON, bishop of Llandaff (17371816), did good service to the cause of revealed religion and social order by his replies to Gibbon the historian, and Thomas Paine. To the former he addressed a series of letters, entitled An Apology for Christianity, in answer to Gibbon's celebrated chapters on the rise and progress of Christianity; and when Paine published his Age of Reason, the bishop met it with a vigorous and conclusive reply, which he termed An Apology for the Bible. Watson also published a few sermons, and a collection of theological tracts, selected from various authors, in six volumes. His Whig principles stood in the way of his church preferment, and he had not magnanimity enough to conceal his disappointment, which is strongly expressed in an autobiographical memoir published after his death by his son. Dr Watson,
Tomb of Bishop Porteous at Sunbridge, Kent.
lege by a prize poem On Death, which has been
DR SAMUEL HORSLEY, bishop of St Asaph (17331806), was one of the most conspicuous churchmen of his day. He belonged to the high church party, and strenuously resisted all political or ecclesiastical change. He was learned and eloquent, but prone to controversy, and deficient in charity and the milder virtues. His character was not unlike that of one of his patrons, Chancellor Thurlow, stern and unbending, but cast in a manly mould. He was an indefatigable student. His first public apillus-pearance was in the character of a man of science. He was some time secretary of the Royal Societywrote various short treatises on scientific subjects, and published an edition of Sir Isaac Newton's works. As a critic and scholar he had few equals; and his disquisitions on the prophets Isaiah and Hosea, his translations of the Psalms, and his Biblical Criticisms (in four volumes), justly entitled him to the honour of the mitre. His sermons, in three volumes, are about the best in the language: clear, nervous, and profound, he entered undauntedly upon the most difficult subjects, and dispelled, by research and argument, the doubt that hung over several passages of Scripture. He was for many years engaged in a controversy with Dr Priestley on the subject of the divinity of Christ. Both of the com batants lost their temper; but when Priestley re sorted to a charge of incompetency and ignorance," it was evident that he felt himself sinking in the struggle. In intellect and scholarship, Horsley was
vastly superior to his antagonist. The political opinions and intolerance of the bishop were more successfully attacked by Robert Hall, in his Apo logy for the Freedom of the Press.
friends forsake us; when sorrow, or sickness, or old age comes upon us, then it is that the superiority of the pleasures of religion is established over those of dissipation and vanity, which are ever apt to fly from GILBERT WAKEFIELD (1756-1801) enjoyed cele- us when we are most in want of their aid. There brity both as a writer on controversial divinity and is scarcely a more melancholy sight to a considerate a classical critic. He left the church in consequence mind, than that of an old man who is a stranger tc of his embracing Unitarian opinions, and afterwards those only true sources of satisfaction. How affecting, left also the dissenting establishment at Hackney, and at the same time how disgusting, is it to see such to which he had attached himself. He published a one awkwardly catching at the pleasures of his translations of some of the epistles in the New Tes- younger years, which are now beyond his reach; or tament, and an entire translation of the same sacred feebly attempting to retain them, while they mock volume, with notes. He was also author of a work his endeavours and elude his grasp! To such a one on Christian Evidence, in reply to Paine. The gloomily, indeed, does the evening of life set in! All bishop of Llandaff having in 1798 written an address is sour and cheerless. He can neither look backward against the principles of the French Revolution, with complacency, nor forward with hope; while the Wakefield replied to it, and was subjected to a aged Christian, relying on the assured mercy of his crown prosecution for libel; he was found guilty, Redeemer, can calmly reflect that his dismission is and sentenced to two years' imprisonment. at hand; that his redemption draweth nigh. While published editions of Horace, Virgil, Lucretius, &c. his strength declines, and his faculties decay, he can which ranked him among the first scholars of his quietly repose himself on the fidelity of God; and at time. Wakefield was an honest, precipitate, and the very entrance of the valley of the shadow of death, simple-minded man; a Pythagorean in his diet, and he can lift up an eye dim perhaps and feeble, yet eccentric in many of his habits and opinions. He occasionally sparkling with hope, and confidently was,' says one of his biographers, as violent against looking forward to the near possession of his heavenly Greek accents as he was against the Trinity, and inheritance, to those joys which eye hath not seer, anathematised the final N as strongly as episcopacy.' nor ear heard, neither hath it entered into the heart The infidel principles which abounded at the of man to conceive.' What striking lessons have we period of the French Revolution, and continued to had of the precarious tenure of all sublunary possesagitate both France and England for some years, sions! Wealth, and power, and prosperity, how pecuinduced a disregard of vital piety long afterwards liarly transitory and uncertain! But religion disin the higher circles of British society. To coun- penses her choicest cordials in the seasons of exigence, teract this, MR WILBERFORCE, then member of parin poverty, in exile, in sickness, and in death. The liament for the county of York, published in 1797 A essential superiority of that support which is derived Practical View of the Prevailing Religious System of from religion is less felt, at least it is less apparent, Professed Christians in the Higher and Middle Classes when the Christian is in full possession of riches and of this Country, Contrasted with Real Christianity. fortune. But when all these are swept away by the splendour, and rank, and all the gifts of nature and Five editions of the work were sold within six months, and it still continues, in various languages, the true Christian stands, like the glory of the forest, rude hand of time or the rough blasts of adversity, to form a popular religious treatise. The author attested, by his daily life, the sincerity of his opi- erect and vigorous; stripped, indeed, of his summer nions. William Wilberforce was the son of a wealthy foliage, but more than ever discovering to the observmerchant, and born at Hull in 1759. He was edu-ing eye the solid strength of his substantial texture.
cated at Cambridge, and on completing his twentyfirst year, was returned to parliament for his native town. He soon distinguished himself by his talents, and became the idol of the fashionable world-dancing at Almack's, and singing before the Prince of Wales. In 1784, while pursuing a continental tour with some relations, in company with Dean Milner, the latter so impressed him with the truths of Christianity, that Wilberforce entered upon a new life, and abandoned all his former gaieties. In parliament he pursued a strictly independent course. For twenty years he laboured for the abolition of the slave-trade, a question with which his name is inseparably entwined. His time, his talents, influence, and prayers, were directed towards the consummation of this object, and at length, in 1807, he had the high gratification of seeing it accomplished. The religion of Wilberforce was mild and cheerful, unmixed with austerity or gloom. He closed his long and illustrious life on the 27th July 1833, one of those men who, by their virtues, talents, and energy, impress their own character on the age in which they live. His latter years realised his own beautiful description
[On the Effects of Religion.]
When the pulse beats high, and we are flushed with youth, and health, and vigour; when all goes on prosperously, and success seems almost to anticipate our wishes, then we feel not the want of the consolations of religion: but when fortune frowns, or
Another distinguished volunteer in the cause of religious instruction, and an extensive miscellaneous writer, was MRS HANNAH MORE, whose works we have previously enumerated.
DR SAMUEL PARR-DR EDWARD MALTBY-
DR SAMUEL PARR (1747-1825) was better known as a classical scholar than a theologian. His sermons on education are, however, marked with cogency of argument and liberality of feeling. His celebrated Spital sermon, when printed, presented the singular anomaly of fifty-one pages of text and two hundred and twelve of notes. Mr Godwin attacked some of the principles laid down in this discourse, as not sufficiently democratic for his taste; for though a stanch Whig, Parr was no revolutionist or leveller. His object was to extend education among the poor, and to ameliorate their condition by gradual and constitutional means. Dr Parr was long head master of Norwich school; and in knowledge of Greek literature was not surpassed by any scholar of his day. His uncompromising support of Whig principles, his extensive learning, and a certain pedantry and oddity of character, rendered him always conspicuous among his brother churchmen. He died at Hatton, in Warwickshire, the perpetual curacy of which he had enjoyed for above forty years, and where he had faithfully discharged his duties as a parish pastor.
DR EDWARD MALTBY, the present bishop of Dur
ham, was the favourite pupil of Parr at Norwich school. He is author of a work on the Christian Evidences; two volumes of sermons, 1819 and 1822; a third volume of sermons preached before the society of Lincoln's Inn, where he succeeded Dr Heber; and also of a vastly improved edition of Morell's Greek Thesaurus, which engaged his attention for about eleven years.
The REV. SIDNEY SMITH, well known as a witty miscellaneous writer and critic, is a canon residentiary of St Paul's. Mr Smith published two volumes of sermons in the year 1809. They are more remarkable for plain good sense than for originality or eloquence. A few sentences from a sermon on the Love of our Country will show the homely earnestness of this author's serious style :
[Difficulty of Governing a Nation.]
It would seem that the science of government is an unappropriated region in the universe of knowledge. Those sciences with which the passions can never interfere, are considered to be attainable only by study and by reflection; while there are not many young men who doubt of their ability to make a constitution, or to govern a kingdom: at the same time there cannot, perhaps, be a more decided proof of a superficial understanding than the depreciation of those difficulties which are inseparable from the science of government. To know well the local and the natural man; to track the silent march of human affairs; to seize, with happy intuition, on those great laws which regulate the prosperity of empires; to reconcile principles to circumstances, and be no wiser than the times will permit; to anticipate the effects of every speculation upon the entangled relations and awkward complexity of real life; and to follow out the theorems of the senate to the daily comforts of the cottage, is a task which they will fear most who know it best-a task in which the great and the good have often failed, and which it is not only wise, but pious and just in common men to avoid.
[Means of Acquiring Distinction.]
It is natural to every man to wish for distinction; and the praise of those who can confer honour by their praise, in spite of all false philosophy, is sweet to every human heart; but as eminence can be but the lot of a few, patience of obscurity is a duty which we owe not more to our own happiness than to the quiet of the world at large. Give a loose, if you are young and ambitious, to that spirit which throbs within you; measure yourself with your equals; and learn, from frequent competition, the place which nature has allotted to you; make of it no mean battle, but strive hard; strengthen your soul to the search of truth, and follow that spectre of excellence which beckons you on beyond the walls of the world to something better than man has yet done. It may be you shall burst out into light and glory at the last; but if frequent failure convince you of that mediocrity of nature which is incompatible with great actions, submit wisely and cheerfully to your lot; let no mean spirit of revenge tempt you to throw off your loyalty to your country, and to prefer a vicious celebrity to obscurity crowned with piety and virtue. If you can throw new light upon moral truth, or by any exertions multiply the comforts or confirm the happiness of mankind, this fame guides you to the true ends of your nature: but, in the name of God, as you tremble at retributive justice, and, in the name of mankind, if mankind be dear to you, seek not that easy and accursed fame which is gathered in the work of revolutions; and deem it better to be for ever unknown, than to found a momentary name upon the basis of anarchy and irreligion.
[The Love of our Country.]
Whence does this love of our country, this universal passion, proceed? Why does the eye ever dwell with fondness upon the scenes of infant life? Why do we breathe with greater joy the breath of our youth! Why are not other soils as grateful, and other heavens as gay? Why does the soul of man ever cling to that earth where it first knew pleasure and pain, and, under the rough discipline of the passions, was roused to the dignity of moral life? Is it only that our country contains our kindred and our friends? And is it no thing but a name for our social affections? It cannot be this; the most friendless of human beings has a country which he admires and extols, and which he would, in the same circumstances, prefer to all others under heaven. Tempt him with the fairest face of nature, place him by living waters under shadowy trees of Lebanon, open to his view all the gorgeous allurements of the climates of the sun, he will love the rocks and deserts of his childhood better than all these, and thou canst not bribe his soul to forget the land of his nativity; he will sit down and weep by the waters of Babylon when he remembers thee, oh Sion!
DR HERBERT MARSH.
DR HERBERT MARSH, bishop of Peterborough, who died in May 1839 at an advanced age, obtained distinction as the translator and commentator of Michaelis's Introduction to the New Testament,' one of the most valuable of modern works on divinity. In 1807 this divine was appointed Lady Margaret's professor of divinity in the university of Cambridge, in 1816 he was made bishop of Llandaff, and in 1819 he succeeded to the see of Peterborough. Besides his edition of Michaelis, Dr Marsh published Lectures on Divinity, and a Comparative View of the Churches of England and Rome. He was author also of some controversial tracts on the Catholic question, the Bible society, &c. in which he evinced great acuteness, tinctured with asperity. In early life, during a residence in Germany, Dr Marsh published, in the German language, various tracts in defence of the policy of his own country in the continental wars; and more particularly a very elaborate History of the Politics of Great Britain and France, from the Time of the Conference at Pilnitz to the Declaration of War, a work which is said to have produced a in Germany, and for which he received a very comarked impression on the state of public opinion siderable pension on the recommendation of Mr Pitt.
About the year 1833 appeared the first of the celebrated Tracts for the Times, by Members of the University of Oxford, which have originated a keen controversy among the clergy of the church of England, and caused a wide rent or schism in that ancient establishment. The peculiar doc trines or opinions of this sect are known by the term Puseyism, so called after one of their first and most intrepid supporters, DR EDWARD BOUVERIE PUSEY, second son of the late Hon. Philip Pusey, and grandson of the Earl of Radnor. This gentleman was born in 1800, and educated at Christ-church college, Oxford, where, in 1828, he became regius professor of Hebrew. In conjunction with several other members of the university of Oxford (Mr Newman, Professor Sewell, &c.), Dr Pusey established an association for spreading and advocating their views regarding church discipline and authority, and from this association sprung the Tracts for the Times.' The tenets maintained by the tract writers were chiefly as follows:-They asserted the threefold order of ministry-bishops, priests, and deacons, They claimed a personal, not a merely official de
scent from the apostles; that is, they declared that stirring-possessing, indeed, the fire and energy of not only had the church ever maintained the three a martial lyric or war-song. In November 1804 orders, but that an unbroken succession of indivi- the noble intellect of Mr Hall was deranged, in conduals, canonically ordained, was enjoyed by the sequence of severe study operating on an ardent and church, and essential to her existence; in short, that susceptible temperament. His friends set on foot a without this there could be no church at all. They subscription for pecuniary assistance, and a lifeheld the doctrine of baptismal regeneration, of sacra- annuity of £100 was procured for him. He shortly mental absolution, and of a real, in contradistinc- afterwards resumed his ministerial functions, but in tion to a figurative or symbolical presence in the about twelve months he had another attack. This Eucharist. They maintained the duty of fasting, of also was speedily removed; but Mr Hall resigned his ritual obedience, and of communion with the apos- church at Cambridge. On his complete recovery, tolic church, declaring all dissenters, and, as a ne- he became pastor of a congregation at Leicester, cessary consequence, the members of the church of where he resided for about twenty years. During Scotland, and all churches not episcopal, to be mem- this time he published a few sermons and criticisms bers of no church at all. They denied the validity in the Eclectic Review. The labour of writing for of lay-baptism; they threw out hints from time to the press was opposed to his habits and feelings. time which evidenced an attachment to the theolo- He was fastidious as to style, and he suffered under gical system supported by the nonjuring divines in a disease in the spine which entailed upon him acute the days of James II.; and the grand Protestant prin- pain. A sermon on the death of the Princess Charciple, as established by Luther-the right of private lotte in 1819 was justly considered one of the most interpretation of Holy Scripture-they denied. The impressive, touching, and lofty of his discourses. tracts were discontinued by order of the bishop of In 1826 he removed from Leicester to Bristol, Oxford; but the same principles have been main- where he officiated in charge of the Baptist contained in various publications, as in MR GLADSTONE'S gregation till within a fortnight of his death, two works, On the Relation of the Church to the State, which took place on the 21st of February 1831. and Church Principles; MR CHRISTMAS'S Discipline The masculine intellect and extensive acquireof the Anglican Church, &c. In 1843 Dr Pusey was ments of Mr Hall have seldom been found united suspended from preaching, and censured by the to so much rhetorical and even poetical brilliancy university for what was denounced as a heretical of imagination. His taste was more refined than sermon, in which he advanced the Roman Catholic that of Burke, and his style more chaste and cordoctrine of transubstantiation. The publications on rect. His solid learning and unfeigned piety gave this memorable controversy are not remarkable for a weight and impressiveness to all he uttered and any literary merit. The tracts are dry polemical wrote, while his classic taste enabled him to clothe treatises, interesting to comparatively few but zea- his thoughts and imagery in language the most lous churchmen. appropriate, beautiful, and commanding. Those who listened to his pulpit ministrations were entranced by his fervid eloquence, which truly disclosed the 'beauty of holiness,' and melted by the awe and fervour with which he dwelt on the mysteries of death and eternity. His published writings give but brief and inadequate picture of his varied talents; yet they are so highly finished, and display such a combination of different powers-of logical precision, metaphysical acuteness, practical sense and sagacity, with a rich and luxuriant imagination, and all the graces of composition-that they must be considered among the most valuable contributions made to modern literature. A complete edition of his works has been published, with a life, by Dr Olinthus Gregory, in six volumes.
REV. ROBERT HALL
The REV. ROBERT HALL, A. M. is justly regarded as one of the most distinguished ornaments of the body of English dissenters. He was the son of a Baptist minister, and born at Arnsby, near Leicester, on the 2d of May 1764. He studied divinity at an academy in Bristol for the education of young men preparing for the ministerial office among the Baptists, and was admitted a preacher in 1780, but next year attended King's college, Aberdeen. Sir James Mackintosh was at the same time a student of the university, and the congenial tastes and pursuits of the young men led to an intimate friendship between them. From their partiality to Greek literature, they were named by their class-fellows Plato and Herodotus.' Both were also attached to
ferior to wisdom, in the same sense as the mason who Every other quality besides is subordinate and inlays the bricks and stones in a building is inferior to the architect who drew the plan and superintends the work. The former executes only what the latter contrives and directs. Now, it is the prerogative of
the study of morals and metaphysics, which they cherished through life. Hall entered the church as assistant to a Baptist minister at Bristol, whence he removed in 1790 to Cambridge. He first appeared as an author by publishing a controversial pamphlet entitled Christianity Consistent with a Love of Free-wisdom to preside over every inferior principle, to dom, which appeared in 1791; in 1793 he published regulate the exercise of every power, and limit the his eloquent and powerful treatise, An Apology for indulgence of every appetite, as shall best conduce to the Freedom of the Press; and in 1799 his sermon, one great end. It being the province of wisdom to Modern Infidelity considered with respect to its Influence preside, it sits as umpire on every difficulty, and so on Society. The latter was designed to stem the gives the final direction and control to all the powers torrent of infidelity which had set in with the French of our nature. Hence it is entitled to be considered Revolution, and is no less remarkable for profound as the top and summit of perfection. It belongs to thought than for the elegance of its style and the wisdom to determine when to act, and when to ceasesplendour of its imagery. His celebrity as a writer when to reveal, and when to conceal a matter-when was further extended by his Reflections on War, a to speak, and when to keep silence-when to give, and sermon published in 1802; and The Sentiments proper when to receive; in short, to regulate the measure of to the Present Crisis, another sermon preached in all things, as well as to determine the end, and pro1803. The latter is highly eloquent and spirit-vide the means of obtaining the end pursued in every deliberate course of action. Every particular faculty or skill, besides, needs to derive direction from this
* A New Spirit of the Age. Vol. i. p. 207.
they are all quite incapable of directing themselves. The art of navigation, for instance, will teach us to steer a ship across the ocean, but it will never teach us on what occasions it is proper to take a voyage. The art of war will instruct us how to marshal an army, or to fight a battle to the greatest advantage, but you must learn from a higher school when it is fitting, just, and proper to wage war or to make peace. The art of the husbandman is to sow and bring to maturity the precious fruits of the earth; it belongs to another skill to regulate their consumption by a regard to our health, fortune, and other circumstances. In short, there is no faculty we can exert, no species of skill we can apply, but requires a superintending nand-but looks up, as it were, to some higher principle, as a maid to her mistress for direction, and this universal superintendent is wisdom.
[From the Funeral Sermon for the Princess Charlotte of Wales.]
Born to inherit the most illustrious monarchy in the world, and united at an early period to the object of her choice, whose virtues amply justified her preference, she enjoyed (what is not always the privilege of that rank) the highest connubial felicity, and had the prospect of combining all the tranquil enjoyments of private life with the splendour of a royal station. Placed on the summit of society, to her every eye was turned, in her every hope was centred, and nothing was wanting to complete her felicity except perpetuity. To a grandeur of mind suited to her royal birth and lofty destination, she joined an exquisite taste for the beauties of nature and the charms of retirement, where, far from the gaze of the multitude, and the frivolous agitations of fashionable life, she employed her hours in visiting, with her distinguished consort, the cottages of the poor, in improving her virtues, in perfecting her reason, and acquiring the knowledge best adapted to qualify her for the possession of power and the cares of empire. thing only was wanting to render our satisfaction complete in the prospect of the accession of such a princess; it was, that she might become the living
mother of children.
The long-wished-for moment at length arrived; but, alas! the event anticipated with such eagerness will form the most melancholy part of our history.
It is no reflection on this amiable princess, to suppose that in her early dawn, with the dew of her youth so fresh upon her, she anticipated a long series of years, and expected to be led through successive scenes of enchantment, rising above each other in fascination and beauty. It is natural to suppose she identified herself with this great nation which she was born to govern; and that, while she contemplated its pre-eminent lustre in arts and in arms, its commerce encircling the globe, its colonies diffused through both hemispheres, and the beneficial effects of its institutions extending to the whole earth, she considered them as so many component parts of her grandeur. Her heart, we may well conceive, would often be ruffled with emotions of trembling ecstacy when she reflected that it was her province to live entirely for others, to compass the felicity of a great people, to move in a sphere which would afford scope for the exercise of philanthropy the most enlarged, of wisdom the most enlightened; and that, while others are doomed to pass through the world in obscurity, she was to supply the materials of history, and to impart that impulse to society which was to decide the destiny of future generations. Fired with the ambition of equalling or surpassing the most distinguished of her predecessors, she probably did not despair of reviving the remembrance of the brightest parts of their
story, and of once more attaching the epoch of British glory to the annals of a female reign. It is needless to add that the nation went with her, and probably outstripped her in these delightful anticipations. We fondly hoped that a life so inestimable would be protracted to a distant period, and that, after diffusing the blessings of a just and enlightened administration, and being surrounded by a numerous progeny, she would gradually, in a good old age, sink under the horizon amidst the embraces of her family and the benedictions of her country. But, alas! these delightful visions are fled; and what do we behold in their room but the funeral-pall and shroud, a palace in mourning, a nation in tears, and the shadow of death settled over both like a cloud! Oh the unspeakable vanity of human hopes-the incurable blindness of man to futurity!-ever doomed to grasp at shadows;' to seize' with avidity what turns to dust and ashes in his hands; to sow the wind, and reap the whirlwind.
REV. JOHN FOSTER
The REV. JOHN FOSTER (1770-1843) was author of a volume of Essays, in a Series of Letters, published in 1805, which was justly ranked among the most original and valuable works of the day. The essays are four in number on a man's writing memoirs of himself; on decision of character; on the application of the epithet romantic; and on some of the causes by which evangelical religion has been rendered less acceptable to persons of cultivated taste. Mr Foster's essays are excellent models of vigorous thought and expression, uniting metaphysical nicety and acuteness with practical sagacity and common sense. He also wrote a volume on the Evils of Popular Igno rance, several sermons, and critical contributions to the Eclectic Review. Like Hall, Mr Foster was pastor of a Baptist congregation. He died at Stapleton, near Bristol.
In the essay On a Man's Writing Memoirs of Himself, Mr Foster thus speculates on a changeable character, and on the contempt which we entertain at an advanced period of life for what we were at an earlier period:
Though in memoirs intended for publication a large share of incident and action would generally be necessary, yet there are some men whose mental history alone might be very interesting to reflective readers; as, for instance, that of a thinking man remarkable for a number of complete changes of his speculative system. From observing the usual tenacity of views once deliberately adopted in mature life, we regard as a curious phenomenon the man whose mind has been a kind of caravansera of opinions, entertained a while, and then sent on pilgrimage; a man who has admired and dismissed sys tems with the same facility with which John Buncle found, adored, married, and interred his succession of wives, each one being, for the time, not only better than all that went before, but the best in the creation. You admire the versatile aptitude of a mind sliding into successive forms of belief in this intellectual meter psychosis, by which it animates so many new bodies of doctrines in their turn. And as none of those dying pangs which hurt you in a tale of India attend the desertion of each of these speculative forms which the soul has a while inhabited, you are extremely amused by the number of transitions, and eagerly ask what is to be the next, for you never deem the present state of such a man's views to be for permanence, unless perhaps when he has terminated his course of believing everything in ultimately be lieving nothing. Even then, unless he is very old, or