« ForrigeFortsett »
drink in the light of truth, is an endeavour, not they do glorify a Father in heaven, by showing that less, to hand it on. Every half-hour spent in He indeed is, and is that He is- Almighty, allearnest
prayer to God for forgiveness and grace, las loving, all-holy, swift to hear, and prompt to save! a direct tendency to spread the saving influence to
“ Arise-Shine." others also. Every life changed from darkness to Arise--for there is work to do, and the day of light, is at once and of its own accord, a missionary earth is far spent. hie. Men take knowledge of such a person, that Arise--for there is a God above, and a heaven he has been with Jesus. It is his business to let beyond : a God with whom we have to do, and a his light shine: but, do what he will, if the light heaven which can be lost or won. is there, it cannot be hid. It does impress men, it Arise--for death works in us as we are, and He does solemnise, it does awe, it does influence, it only can quicken souls, who first raised up his Son does attract, to see the fruit of the Spirit shown in Jesus. a life. “Love, joy, peace, long-suffering, gentle- Shine-for thy light is come, and yet a little while Dess, goodness, faith, meekness, temperance," these is it with you. Away with all screens and all disthings are signs also : these things are that clear guises, and let the light shine into your souls with shining of the candle which gives light to all that its comforting and cleansing and quickening life. are in the house : these things, not counterfeited Shine-for the light received must also be manibut real—these things, acquired (as they can only fested ; set not under the bushel of indolence or be acquired) at the footstool of a throne of grace- | unconcern, but rather on the candlestick of the life, make the light received a light also transmitted : that they who enter in may see the light.
C. J. VAUGHAN.
OMÀR AND THE PERSIAN.
The victor stood beside the spoil, and by the grinding dead.
The victor spoke, “Thou, Persian dog ! hast cost more lives than thine ;
“No Persian faints at sight of Death, we know his face too well,
The cup was brought, but ere he drank, the Persian shudder'd white,
The Persian smiled, with parchëd lips, upon the foemen round,
Upsprang a wrathful army then,-Omir restrained them all,
S. A. D. L
We are so essentially a humorous people, with | torture, were pressed into the service of the rol. such a passion for reducing everything to an licking humorist. The prosperity of the jest was absurdity, that murder, arson, or any other des- always secured if the hospital with its sickly perate crime is bardly considered too serious to be machinery was suggested. spun into amusement. As for diseases, there are very As the stage professes to be a faithful reflection few, however painful and fatal they may be in the of the manners of the time, we can hardly feel sur. maiv, which, in some of their aspects, are not con- prised that the actor fights hard for his comic sidered fair game for the comic writer. The gout diseases. In many a green-room, the morning after has long been an established favourite in farces, a performance of a new piece, there has been some comedies, and caricatures ; its agonies have been such a conversation as the following :played upon with an unmistakable relish, and “What!” says the low comedian to the company delighted audiences have approved of mock torture generally, after the manager has suggested that the as a highly humorous representation. Toothache, piece must be reduced in length : “cut out my for some unoxplained reason, has never been very stomach-ache in the second act! what have I got popular on the stage, probably because it has left, then ?” never been, rightly or wrongly, associated with The author is silent and bites his pen, but the over eating and drinking. Paralysis has been left manager ventures upon a mild remonstrance. alone, though it once gave a richness of tone to a "No," returns the low comedian, in a decided celebrated aotor: and we are not aware that any tone, walking out of the room amongst the wings attempt has been ever made to extract fun from the upon the stage, “I don't go on in that act without ague, Consumption has been well worked on its my stomach-ache." sentimental side ; but there must be a comic aspect, Then the old gentleman of the theatre, taking if diligent searchers will only seek it. The plague courage from his brother actor, stands up manfully has been represented to a British audience with very for his gout, which “ went” so immensely with the equivocal success, but the persevering dramatist audience on the previous night. should not be disheartened by a single failure. St. “I hope, sir, you don't intend to cut my gout.” Vitus's dance was at one time the most attractive “We have just come to that part, Mr. Gills," feature of a smart and bustling ballet, and various replies the manager, blandly. kinds of deformity, from a limp to a dislocated leg, “I can't afford to lose a bit of it,” returns Mr. give a fantastic spirit to our popular music-hall Gills, getting a little excited. dancing. Even in a higher walk of the drama-in “I'm afraid we must prune it down ; it interferes modern comedy-the most idolised comedian of the with the action of the piece, and you don't get much day has invented an elaborate stutter, which he out of it." talked with every night for four or five years. The “Don't get much out of it!" almost shouts Mr. cholera, except in its mildest forms, has not been Gills. “If you'd been in front last night, and had used as an agent to excite laughter; but sea- heard the shouts of applause when my undutiful son sickness, influenza, and a variety of similar com- kicked me violently upon the bad leg, you wouldn't plaints, are hardly ever off the stage at one theatre say so." or another. Sea-sickness, particularly if properly “O yes,” breaks in the author at this point, “I handled, is better than all the wit of Swift or the think when boy kicks leghumour of Smollett. It is no check to the mirth to Very well,” returns the manager, “let it stand; know that people have died of this very funny com- but what about the tea-urn scene?” plaint; there are weak people in the world who “Oh!” replies Mr. Gills, with an air of affected would die of anything. A wooden leg and the phy. resignation, “if you touch that, I'd better resign sical discomfort it leads to, can always be relied on the part.” for provoking merriment; while a broken head, if “It's too long,” says the manager, firmly. treated judiciously, can be made vastly amusing.
ink so ?” mildly inquires the author; Hanging is an operation that has its ludicrous side, we may prune the dialogue a little, but the situawhich writers like Charles Lamb, and dramatists tion, in my humble opinion, ought to be preserved." like Punch-and-Judy-show workers, bave not been The situation is preserved, as a matter of course, slow to discover. Those who remember the rather and, without prying farther into the council of the overrated sketches of Seymour, the caricaturist, green-room, we can easily imagine what that situawill also recollect how large a portion of their fun tion is. Given a tea-uru and a gouty man upon the was got out of practical, not to say eruel, incidents. stage, and it is required to know what a popular The biting teeth of a man-trap, a bursting blunder dramatist will do with them. buss, the threatening shadow of a gipsy's bludgeon, The gouty man, stout, red-faced, helpless, testy, the spikes and broken bottles of a garden-wall, a and much padded about the legs, will be wheeled runaway horse, a broken-down chaise, a savage on in a chair by the comic servant, and fixed at the bull-dog, and a thousand other instruments of breakfast-table. A tea-urn will then be brought
in, foathing like a brewhoúse copper, and placed' While this sort of fun is as popular as it is, we upon the table, when the comic servant will with ought to boast very little about our iinproved draw. After a few seconds, taken up with speaking humanity. No mad ass, it is true, is now baitca
and the business of the table, the gouty man will for the gratification of geutility and fasbior; no i tiod the water dripping rapidly from the tea-urn bull is now turned loose with fireworks, no doÂ is upon the worst of his two lame legs, which it is now roasted alivé nor allowed to fight, no rats are ¡ totally out of his power to move. He cannot reach killed, no badgers are drawn, and no game-cocks a bell, and he therefore knocks violently on the floor are allowed to spur each other to death. We with a thick stick, the audience in the meantime have all agreed to turn our backs upon the ainuservaring with delight when they are made fully ments once popular at Hockley-in-the-Fiole, and to ll aware of the humour of the position. After a most cultivate the fine arts, which suffer us not to be , un warrantable delay, the comic servant makes his brutal. A relish for imaginary sufferings, liowever, appearance with anything but signs of pity and seems to have taken the place of the old coarse
woutrition upon his countenance. He pretends to savagery, and this is gratified by comic representa; be nearly bursting with half-concealed laughter, at tions of common diseases. Some day, perhaps, the 1 which the audiencë shout in sympathy. When he wits who thus play with suffering will not linger !' condescends to recover his speech, and addresses his idly at the half-way houses of death, but will push
aflicted master, who is suffering from a painful on their journey to its legitimate conclusion. If disease most painfully aggravated by his gross disease can be made funny, why not the last sceñe Dezlect, instead of asking pardon he says, in the of all? Death is not always strutting in its diguified tone of an injured and unappreciated servant, “If I poses, and many meň have left the world with don't give satisfaction, I'd better leave ! ”
something marvellously like an anti-climax.
AUGUSTINE AND ADEODATUS.
I HAVE elsewhere, in a short poem which bears earliest infancy, was postponed till the boy could the title of “ Augustine : In inemoriam Adeodati," make a conscious profession of his faith, and when endeavoured to represeót in a half-dramatic form, boyhood came there were so few signs of any re
the thoughts and feelings of the great bishop of ligious earnestness, so many of a passionate and | Hippo on the death of his only and much-loved sensual temperament, that his mother Monica, in ! son. That poem, however, is not likely to find its her dread of the guilt of post-baptismal sin, shrank
way to more than a few among the readers of Good from exposing him to the terrible alternative, WOEIR, and it is, I believe, worth while to bring which, in her judgment, baptism brought with it.* before others the facts upon which it is based, and often he had been sigued with the sign of the cross, the episode of Augustine's life which it was designed in token of the warfare to which he had been called, to illustrate. To many these facts may be altogether and had tasted of the salt which was given to i dew, and come as with an unexpectedly romantic children when they took their place in the class of interest. To all, I believe, they will serve to make Catechumens, as a symbol of the Christian's purity the life of the great teacher of the African Church of life. Once, in the panic of a boy's sick bed, piore of a reality. They will bring him before us, he had even craved earnestly to be baptized, but not only as the theologian who stamped the impress his mother, eager as she was to see him as one of of his own mind upon the Latin Church for cen- the fold of Christ, felt on his recovery that the taries, to whom she has owed, again and again, the religious impulse had been too weak and momenrevival of evangelical faith and life even in the tary to justify her in bringing him to the frout, and midst of her corruptions, to whom the great Re- his admission into that fold was agaili delayed. + formers of the sixteenth century traced, in no small As boyhood passed into manhood, the dangers of measure, their insight into God's truth, but as one that perilous age became more manifest. It was in " of like passions with ourselves,” strong, impetuous, vain that his mother warned him, with a true and ardent in his attachments, giving (as many of like loving faithfulness, against the more hateful fornis | strength of character have given, at some period of of impurity. I Even her prayers seemed for many
their lives,) to human objects of affection the pas. years to be in vain also. She could but take refuge sionate and fervent love which was afterwards to be cousecrated to God. I shall endeavour to narrate
Confess. i. 17. the story, as far as possible, in his own words. † Ibid. M. Bougaud, in the “Life of St. Monica,"
The youth of Augustine was, as is well-known, / which Lady Herbert of Lea's translation has recently stained with evil . After the common custom of mitting to her husband's refusal to have the boy bura
brought before English readers, represents her as subthe time, baptism, instead of being administered in tized when the danger of his illness was over. Augustine's in the comforting words of a holy bishop, who told from the woman who had for thirteen years shared her that the child of so many tears could not perish, his joys and labours and sorrows, with a "wounded in the promise of a voice which came to her in a and a bleeding heart.”. She returned to her own dream, and bade her believe that where she was, country, “vowing that thenceforth none should her son should be also. *
language is however clear, and leaves no doubt that the
statement in the text is true. • "Master and Scholar, &c. &c.,” pp, 47—55. I Confess. ii. 7.
take his place." There is no trace that he ever saw At the age of seventeen he came to Carthage, and or heard of her again. We may, perhaps, recog. plunged into all the vices of a great heathen city. nize a certain tenderness and delicacy in his never For some months his life was simply one of boundless mentioning her name ; wherever she might be, the and random impurity, soon modified, but in no sense finger of scorn should not be pointed at her. He corrected by his adoption of the creed and worship himself was less loyal in his affection, and sought to of the Mapichæans. Their use of Christian phrases, dissipate his sorrow in the caresses of another their hymns even to the glory of the Father, and mistress. But the wound was not healed; his the Son, and the Holy Ghost, brought no light or misery became greater, Happily his son was left strength to him. They hardly trained his intellect. to him; he could not bring himself to part with They did not rouse his conscience.+ When the that treasure.* first intoxication of lust was over, there was a The time was close at hand which was to bring change which he himself recognizes as for the the answer to his mother's prayer, and the peace of better, though it was only for the betterness of a God to his own troubled and wounded spirit. The less evil. At the age of seventeen, or eighteen, decision, which no deliberation, no effort of will though us willing to contract the responsibilities of seemed able to bring about, came, he tells us, a legal marriage, he found one whom he loved, and through a seeming chance, in which he recognised who loved him with a true affection. The vague the hand of God. Agitated by the entreaties and license of his life was brought under control, and he persuasions of friends who pressed him to lose no continued faithful to her whom he had chosen. A time, struggling between the spirit and the flesh, son was born to them, not, as in lawful wedlock, the restless and disquieted, he fled from all human com, child of hopes and prayers, dreaded rather than panionship, threw himself under the branches of a desired, but when born “compelling him to love tig-tree, and burst into a flood of tears. Broken it." Even then he welcomed it as God's gift, and utterances passed from his lips. “How long, O named it Adeodatus (God-given). For thirteen Lord, how long ? To-morrow! to-morrow! Why years the union continued unbroken; they went not now? Why not end my shame and misery at together to Rome and Milan. The boy, as he grew once ?” As he lay in this agony of soul, a voice, up, gave promise of high excellence, and was a new like that of boy or girl singing, floated to him through link between them. Augustine himself passed the air, “Take and read, take and read.” He had through the stages of his spiritual life, which he never heard those words as the burden of any song, has traced with so wonderful a vividuess. He left and it came to him as a message from God. He the fantastic worship and creed of the Manichæans, remembered how, in the history of St. Antony, and the superstitions of diviners and astrologers. which had recently been brought before his notice, The study of Plato led him some steps towards the the whole life of the man of God had been deterapprehension of a spiritual and eternal life. His mined by the seemingly chance words that met him work as a teacher, the purifying effect of daily as he opened a MS. of the Gospels. He believed contact, in the spirit of a father's tenderness, with
himself to be called to learn wisdom in the same the innocence of his own child, helped him yet way. He rose from the ground, and returning to further. He had come within reach of the teaching the place where he had left his friend, took up the of Ambrose. He began to think seriously of volume of the Epistles, which he had laid down in settling down to some fixed form of faith, some his agony of spirit, opened it, and read the words, reputable mode of life. His mother and his friends “Not in rioting and drunkenness, not in chamberurged him to marry. With some want of wisdom, ing and wantonness, not in strife and envying. But sacrificing what would bave been his true happi- put ye on the Lord Jesus Christ, and make not ness, and more in harmony with the Divine law of provision for the flesh to fulfil the lusts thereof." right, to the claims of society, and the world's stan. dard of repute, instead of counselling him to wed
until this repudiation took place, he could not even speak the companion who had proved so faithful, and turn to the half-converted inquirer. This is, I believe, a pure the mother of his son into a lawful wife, they fixed invention. It is balanced by a deliberate suppression of on a bride for him who was too young for marriage,
the fact that Monica herself never felt so little certain of and in the meantime insisted on his breaking off the when she urged this respectable marriage against the
Divine guidance, never was so haunted by misgirings, as connexion which he had formed at Carthage. | It bent of her son's affections; and that its immediate result was, as he narrates, a hard trial to him.
was, not a victory over evil, but a relapse into a worse form of it. M. Bougaud trusts to his imagination again * “ He
in the statement that it is “certain the object of AugusConfess. iii. 19-21. + Confess, üi. 10. tine's love retired to a convent to spend her time in peniConfess. iv. 2.
tence and prayer." It is, of course, possible; but neither Confess. vi. 23, 25. In M. Bougaud's “Life of St. Augustine, nor any one else who could know, says a word Mönica," above referred to, this step is represented as about it. the direct consequence of Ambrose's declaration, that,
* Confess. vi. 25.
They came to him as with a new and marvellous that all words derive their power, as means and pover. The darkness passed away, and the flood instruments of truth, from the Divine Word who of light, the light of God, poured in.*
speaks to the soul of man, to the utterance of the The story has been often told, and were it my vow that he will love that Divine Teacher ever purpose now to relate it in its relation to the life of more and more in proportion as he grows in know. Angustine as a whole, it ought to have been told ledge. And this, he himself testifies, is not an more fully. I am concerned with it chiefly in its imaginary dialogue, as between any teacher and bearing upon the life of the son rather than on that any pupil, but reproduces what had actually passed of the father. For him too, it is hardly too much between them. We may legitimately look on it as to say, it was the starting-point of a new blessedness. representing the "sweet converse" which they After an interval of preparation Augustine returned habitually had together. It was one of the blessed to Milan, and presented himself to Ambrose for fruits of Movica's holiness and love that the boy baptism. With him came Alypius, the companion came under her influence also. She took in his of his school-boy days, the friend of his riper years, affections the place of the mother he had lost; and who had shared, though with less of the throes and loved him as she had loved his father, but without agonies of a strong soul, his inquiries after truth, the fear and grief which that love had cost her. and with him had been led to know it. But with In a treatise on the Blessed Life, written while his those two friends of mature age there was also the son was yet living, and constructed upon the model boy Adeodatus, the darling of his father's heart, of those dialogues of Plato, which had been so whom he now sought to bring under the power of helpful to him, he introduces Adeodatus as one of the grace of God, and within the shelter of the the interlocutors, "youngest of all in years, but eternal home in which he himself, after his many unless I greatly err, with an intellect in which wanderings, had at last found refuge. He stood there is the promise of great things.”+ Monica too there “the child of sin," but God “had shewed was there, gaining the ear even of the students mercy on him.” When the father speaks of the and teachers of philosophy by her earnest saintmemories of that day he dwells on this as its liness. Among other questions, they discuss the brightest joy. They, the father and son, were nature of the eternal life of blessedness. They to begin their new life as children of God together. agree that it can be found only in God. "He who The boy was to be brought up now "in the pur- has God is blessed.” But then comes the question, ture and admonition of the Lord.”
Who can be said to have God? and they give secration of natural affections gave to them a different answers-"He who lives rightly:" " marvellous sweetness.” He could not but weep who does what God commands."I Adeodatus too for joy.
has an answer ready, “He has God who has not Adeodatus seems, indeed, to have presented the an unclean spirit;" and Monica sees in this an pattern of a bright and stainless youth. His father instance of the truth that wisdom is brought out of speaks of him as possessing a wisdom far beyond the mouths of babes and sucklings. This, more
God, in his almighty love, had than any other definition, went to the root of the brought good out of evil, and though he had been whole matter. The presence of impurity in the in the fullest sense of the words, "conceived and heart was incompatible with that knowledge, that bora in sin,” had given him all good gifts of fruition of the Divine Presence in which eternal wisdom and knowledge. For this Augustine blessedness consists. But the father went on to thanks God, even though the clearness and depth probe the boy's thoughts still further: “What did of that wisdom filled him with amazement and he mean by those words of his? Who could be said with awe. The work of educating him, always a not to have an unclean spirit?” The boy made delight, assumed now a new character. In a book answer, “He who lives in purity?” Questioned which bears the title of The Teacher (De Magistro), further, whether by that' purity he meant only he reproduces, in the form of a dialogue with abstinence from gross sensual sin, he answered yet his son, a long series of lessons on the use and again in words which Augustine noted down at the power of words, implying some knowledge of the time, “He alone lives in purity who waits on Greek and Punic as well as of their own language, God in all things, and devotes himself solely to Latin. He draws his illustrations (it is worth Him."g while to remember that this was after his con- The death of Monica not long afterwards, when Fersion) from the Satires of Persius, and Adeodatus her son was but thirty-two, and her grandson discusses it with him, and, as it were, caps his fifteen, filled both of them with a sorrow which quotation. He leads his pupil on to the thought till then neither of them had known.
whose prayer had been answered and whose joy was Confess. viii. 28-30.
Confess. ix. 14.
completed, she was ready depart in peace. It was 1 De Magistro, c. 28. The passage in question is that enough that she had seen her son a Christian, not in which Persius speaks of the misery of evil-doers : a Platonist, a Catholic, not a Manichæan. Augus
"Virtutem videant, intabescantque relicta.”
Confess. ix. 14.
+ De Beata Vita, c. 6. In shame at having left her."
De Beata Vitâ, c. 12. § De Beata Vita, c, 18.