As a worm creepeth with her belly on the ground, with her portion and share of Adam's curse, lifts up its head to partake a little of the blessings of the air, and opens the junctures of her imperfect body, and curls her little rings into knots and combinations, drawing up her tail to a neighbourhood of the head's pleasure and motion; but still it must return to abide the fate of its own nature, and dwell and sleep upon the dust: so are the hopes of a mortal man; he opens his eyes and looks upon fine things at distance, and shuts them again with weakness, because they are too glorious to behold; and the man rejoices because he hopes fine things are staying for him; but his heart aches, because he knows there are a thousand ways to fail and miss of those glories; and though he hopes, yet he enjoys not; he longs, but he possesses not, and must be content with his portion of dust; and being a worm and no man, must die down in this portion, before he can receive the end of his hopes, the salvation of his soul in the resurrection of the dead.*


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FROM SERMON,† ENTITLED THE MARRIAGE RING.' 1. Marriage compared with single life.

* Funeral Sermon on the Archbishop of Armagh. + Sermon xvii. P. 122.

2. Marriage considered by itself.

1st. As it relates equally to husband and wife. 1. Caution requisite in marrying:-2. They ought, when newly married, to avoid offending each other:-3. They should be careful to avoid little vexations:-4. They should abstain from those things from which they are respectively averse:-5. They should avoid nice distinctions of mine and thine. 2dly. As it relates to the husband and wife separately; and, 1st, To the husband.-Nature of his power;-His love;-He should set a good example to his wife;-His chastity should be unspotted. 2dly, To the wife. -Obedience;-Compliance.


MARRIAGE is a school and exercise of virtue ; and though marriage hath cares, yet the single life hath desires, which are more troublesome and more dangerous, and often end in sin; while the cares are but instances of duty, and exercises of piety; and therefore if single life hath more privacy of devotion, yet marriage hath more necessities and more variety of it, and is an exercise of more graces.

Marriage is the proper scene of piety and patience, of the duty of parents and the charity of relations; here kindness is spread abroad, and love is united and made firm as a centre; marriage is the nursery of heaven. The virgin sends

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prayers to God; but she carries but one soul to him: but the state of marriage fills up bers of the elect, and hath in it the labour of love, and the delicacies of friendship, the blessing of society, and the union of hands and hearts. It hath in it less of beauty, but more of safety than the single life; it hath more care, but less danger; it is more merry, and more sad; is fuller of sorrows, and fuller of joys : it lies under more burdens, but is supported by all the strengths of love and charity, and those burdens are delightful.

Marriage is the mother of the world, and preserves kingdoms, and fills cities, and churches, and heaven itşelf. Celibate, like the fly in the heart of an apple, dwells in a perpetual sweetness; but sits alone, and is confined and dies in singularity; but marriage, like the useful bee, builds a house and gathers sweetness from every flower, and labours and unites into societies and republics, and sends out colonies, and feeds the world with delicacies, and obeys their king, and keeps order, and exercises many virtues, and promotes the interest of mankind, and is that state of good things to which God hath designed the present constitution of the world.


They that enter into the state of marriage cast a die of the greatest contingency, and yet of the greatest interest in the world, next to the last throw for eternity. Life or death, felicity or a

lasting sorrow, are in the power of marriage. A woman, indeed, ventures most, for she hath no sanctuary to retire to from an evil husband; she must dwell upon her sorrow, and hatch the eggs which her own folly or infelicity hath produced; and she is more under it because her tormentor hath a warrant of prerogative, and the woman may complain to God as subjects do of tyrant princes; but otherwise she hath no appeal in the causes of unkindness. And though the man can run from many hours of his sadness, yet he must return to it again; and when he sits among his neighbours, he remembers the objection that is in his bosom, and he sighs deeply. The boys, and the pedlars, and the fruiterers, shall tell of this man when he is carried to his grave, that he lived and died a poor wretched person.

The stags in the Greek epigram, whose knees were clogged with frozen snow upon the mountains, came down to the brooks of the valleys, hoping to thaw their joints with the waters of the stream; but there the frost overtook them, and bound them fast in ice, till the young herdsmen took them in their stranger snare. It is the unhappy chance of many men, finding many inconveniences upon the mountains of single life, they descend into the valleys of marriage to refresh their troubles; and there they enter into fetters, and are bound to sorrow by the cords of a man's or woman's peevishness.

As the Indian women enter into folly for the price of an elephant, and think their crime war

rantable, so do men and women change their liberty for a rich fortune (like Eriphile the Argive; she preferred gold before a good man), and show themselves to be less than money, by overvaluing that to all the content and wise felicity of their lives; and when they have counted the money and their sorrows together, how willingly would they buy, with the loss of all that money, modesty, or sweet nature to their relative!

As very a fool is he that chooses for beauty principally :- " Cui sunt eruditi oculi et stulta mens,” (as one said,) whose eyes are witty and their souls sensual: it is an ill band of affections

tie two hearts together by a little thread of red and white : and they can love no longer but until the next ague comes ; and they are fond of each other but at the chance of fancy, or the small-. pox, or child-bearing, or care, or time, or any thing that can destroy a pretty flower.

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Man and wife are equally concerned to avoid all offences of each other in the beginning of their conversation : every little thing can blast an infant blossom; and the breath of the south can shake the little rings of the vine, when first they begin to curl like the locks of a new-weaned boy :but when by age and consolidation they stiffen into the hardness of a stem, and have, by the warm embraces of the sun and the kisses of


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