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Jawful things; and desirous upon any terms that are tolerable, to return to the communion of it; a mind free from passion and prejudice, from peevish exceptions, and groundless and endless scruples; not apt to insist upon little cavils and objections, to which the very best things, and the greatest and the clearest truths in the world, are and always will be liable: and whatever they have been heretofore, to be henceforth no more children tussed to and fro, and carried about with every wind of doctrine, by the slight of men, and eunning craftiness of those who lie in wait to deccire.
And if we were thus affected on all hands, we might yet be a happy church and nation. If we would govern ourselves by these rules, and walk according to them, peace would be upon us, and mercy, and on the Israel of God.
Tillotson was very eminent as a preacher in his day, and his sermons have been deservedly proposed to divines and other writers, as models of correct and elegant composition. They were the only property he left his family; but the prodigious sum obtained for them; gives us occasion w wonder at the high price of sermons in those days. The copy-right was sold for two thousand five hundred guineas-equal at least to three times the sum in modern money,
Was born at Croft in Yorkshire, though in what particular year is unknown. After receiving the rudiments of his education at North Alveston in that county, he was admitted, in 1651, to Clare Hall, Cambridge, under the tuition of Mr. John Tillotson, afterwards archbishop of Canterbury; but subsequently he removed to Christ College, of which house he became fellow in 1657. In 1685, he was elected master of the Charter-House in London, and soon after took orders. After the revolution, he was appointed chaplain in ordinary to king Williain. It is said, that he was proposed as successor to Dr. Tillotson in the see of Canterbury; but was thrown out, on a plea of the bishops, that his writings were too sceptical. · His death happened in 1715.
His works are, 1. Telluris Theoria Sacra ; or, Sacred Theory of the Earth ; first published in 1680. This work was so highly admired, that he was induced, at the particular instance of Charles II, to translate it into English, or rather, to re-write it; since some of the chapters are newly modelled, and several new ones added. The English title runs thus :-" The Sacred Theory of the Earth, containing an Account of the Original of the Earth, and of all the General Changes which it hath already undergone, or is to undergo, till the Consummation of all Things : in two volumes. The two first books concerning the Deluge and concerning Paradise: the two last books concerning the Burning of the World, and concerning the New Heavens and New Earth ;
1; with a Review of the Theory, and of its Proofs ; especially in reference to Seripture." To the sixth edition, published in 1726, is added, the Author's Defence of the Work from the Exceptions of Mr. Warren, and the Examination of Mr. Keil.
The sixth chapter of the first book is full of magnificent imagery. The author is describing the dissolution of the primæval world; its surface bursting asunder in a thousand parts
and its gigantic fragments tumbling with a thundering surge into the vast and fathomless abyss beneath.
In order to understand this description, it is necessary to premise, that the primæval earth, (according to the theory of Burnet) as resulta ing from a state of chaotic Auidity, consisted of three different portions or strata, of the formation of which he gives the following conjectural explanation: When the confused and heterogeneous particles of the chaos began to separate and to coalesce into masses, agreeably to the laws of their specific gravity, the grosser particles would first sink to the centre of the earth, forming there a nucleus to the supernatant fluid. The incumbent mass would still tend to purify itself; the lighter and more oily particles, mounting upwards, would form a sort of pellicle on the surface of the waters, which oily pellicle would serve to receive and entangle the particles of earth and other substances descending from the regions of the air, in which they had been diffused and suspended. Thus a crust would be gradually formed on the fluid surface, and which would receive continual augmentations by the successive accretion of fresh particles, both from above and