sentiments he generally approved.' His erviable seclusion from the tumultuous engagements of the world, and an early attachment to religious enquiries, might also depreciate in his esteem the importance of those institutions which others, less happily circumstanced, have regarded as highly conducive to their Christian improvement: or he had seen too many instances in which what was called religion “ consisted entirely in minute observances and formal grimaces, with which the wicked can comply as well as the good.”. Let him not then be too severely censured if, in contemplating the abuse of religious observances, he disparaged their advantages, while by precept and example he still “made religion to con

he so little regarded the exterior." Or, in the poet's own language,

“ other rites Observing none, but adoration pure, Which God likes best."


The excellent Dr. Hartley, after recommending various helps to a devotional temper, remarks, “ Times, forms, and rules of devotion, are schoolmasters that serve to bring us to Christ. As for those persons who are so far advanced, as to walk with God continually, who sanctify the minutest actions by a perpetual dedication of them to God, I do not presume to instruct them. Their anointing teaches them all things.”— “ Rule of Life,” Prop. 73, in Hartley on Man, 1st ed. ii. 334.

f See “ Mem." i. 241.

& Jurun's Erasmus, i. p. 52.

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sist in such things, as none, except worthy persons, ever observe; in the exercise of those Christian virtues, which are formed in the mind, from a knowledge of our duty and a persuasion of its importance.”

Of the benefits derived from what is called Natural Religion, he had a much lower opinion than many have adopted. His sense of the necessity and value of Revelation was proportionably exalted. The popular notions of a soul, and an intermediate state of conscious existence, he regarded but as the fond conceits of vain philosophy.* Considering death as the utter destruction of the whole man, his hopes of futurity depended solely on the Christian doctrine of a RESURRECTION.'

The rapid progress of his disorder allowed him scarcely any opportunity of expressing his views upon this subject during his last hours. In the contemplation of death, how

Jortin's Erasmus, i. p. 52. i See “Mem." i. 392-394.

k See his “ General Reply," &c. p. 10. i On these subjects he was a great admirer of the works of Bishop Law, particularly of his discourses on “ The Nature and End of Death under the Christian Covenant," and “ Concerning the use of the words Soul or Spirit in Holy Scripture; and the state of the Dead there described.” Both subjoined to the Bishop's “ Considerations," &c.

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ever, he was happily exempted from those gloomy apprehensions which have embittered the comfort of, too many excellent persons, whose theological system “ Casts round Religion's orb the mists of fear,

Or shades with horrors, what with smiles should glow."**

In the sentiments which Mr. Wakefield had embraced he saw nothing to dismay, but much to console and elevate the mind. The following is the conclusion of his Will, made during an indisposition at Dorchester gaol.

so I wish to be buried with as little expence and ceremony as is consistent with decorum, and a regard to general opinion; and hope that my family and friends will not lament my death, which is a motive of joy, and not of grief, under an expectation of immortality by the Christian covenant, but rather profit by their fond remembrance of me in avoiding my faults, and imitating my virtues.

I come quickly, and my reward is with me. Even so come, Lord Jesus! Amen."

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We venture to subjoin a few additional particulars, which occur to our recollection, chiefly respecting the domestic habits of the subject of these memoirs.

His fondness for young persons has been noticed more than once, and it was a very observable feature in his disposition. He entered with great interest into their innocent amusements, particularly those of his own children, not unfrequently laying aside his books, and devoting an hour with them to a game of cricket; or instructing them in the arts of making and flying a kite, in both which he was quite an adept. . To the levities, and even follies, of youth he was indulgent; and an enemy to all unnecessary severity and restraint; aiming rather to excite the practice of virtue from a detestation of vice, than from that more servile, and generally ineffectual, principle-a dread of punishment.

Towards the aged and infirm, his behaviour was marked by the most kind attention and respect. To inferiors of every description he conducted himself with uniform condescension and affability; making it a rule, as he expresses it in one of his private papers, “always to speak with courtesy and civility and respectfulness to the servants, and even to the meanest person in the streets.”

His whole deportment was distinguished by an easy politeness, and gentleness of manners, far beyond that of most studious men. In respectful attachment to the softer sex especially, he could scarcely be exceeded by any man.

He describes himself as having always been an idolater of the sex:" " nor, he pleasantly adds, “ can this justly bring upon me the imputation of sin; as a woman is no graven image, nor the likeness of any thing in heaven above,” &c. " In another letter, enlarging on their superior amiableness, he says, “ the women in general, are worth, one with another, about half a dozen of our sex.” To the same effect, in the margin of his copy of the Prose Works of his favourite author, he remarks, at the conclusion of Milton's Life, “ His greatest failing was a disparaging opinion of the other sex; unworthy of such a mind!” giving as instances some passages o in his writings, and his “conduct to his wives and daughters.”

Although Mr. Wakefield, as Dr. Parr very

n See “ Mem." I. 529.

o In the margin of “ The History of Britain," p.6, where Milton describes “ Earl Godwin's daughter” as com mended much for beauty, modesty, and beyond what is requișite in a woman, learning,” Mr. Wakefield makes this apose trophe, with his pencil, “ John! John! I blush for thee!"

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