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of inquiry, whatever that result may
Notwithstanding Mr. Fox's acute remarks (Pref. pp. v.-vii.) we do not perceive that the conviction of Carlile "virtually rescinds the protection granted by the Legislature to Unita
rians." We hesitate in our assent to the proposition, (p. 33,) that “to talk of the opinions of Deists dissolving all the bonds of society, destroying the obligation of an oath, and annihilating the distinction between vice and virtue, is mere declamation,” "the language of deception, of ignorance or of bigotry." We cannot for a moment admit (p. 29) "that the rejection of Christianity may be thrown into a series of propositions, every one of which propositions is maintained by some sect of Christians," since we believe that the reverse is the truth, and that the essentials of the Christian religion may be put into a series of articles, not one of which has ever been denied by any Christian denomination. Still less can we agree with the assertion that the opinion of Unitarians is opposed to that both of other Christians and of Deists, (Pref. p. xv.) “in resting the hope of future existence upon the doctrine of the resurrection, and not upon the Orthodox and Deistical notion of the natural immortality of the soul;" for we apprebend that the majority of unbelievers
are Materialists, and we know that the Unitarians are divided upon the question of the soul's natural immortality. We make these exceptions to this Sermon for the sake of truth and free discussion, but we could quote many eloquent passages which have our cordial approbation. The following contains a beautiful extract, and as beautiful an adaptation of it to the preacher's purpose:
"The feelings of pious Christians are doubtless wounded by insulting language
offered to all they revere. Let them meet it by a Christian spirit. Nothing will shew so well the heavenliness of their religion. Let them imbibe the spirit of the following beautiful remark of Robinson: Is God Does he thunder, does he lighten, dees he afflict this poor man? Behold his sun enlightens his habitation, his rain refreshes his fields, his gentle breeze fans and animates him every day, his revelation lies always open before him, his throne of mercy is ever accessible to him, and will you, rash Christian, will you mark bim out for vengeance? I fancy to myself a Christian, who has abetted a prosecution for Infidelity, reading such a passage as this. Does not his heart sink within him at the incorrectness of the picture, an incorrectness produced by his instrumentality? No,' he may say, the sun does
dishonoured? Imitate his conduct then.
not enlighten his habitation; I have con. signed him to a dungeon. The rain does not refresh his fields; I have invaded his property. His home does not smile; I have filled it with mourning. Revelation is not open before him; I have made bin loathe the book, and done the utmost of a mortal to reverse the benignity of God.' Miserable man!"-Pp. 42, 43.
ART. IV.-A Few Words on an Important Subject: The Difference between Unitarians and Deists: Recommended to the Consideration of Unbelievers and Reputed Orthodez Believers. By Richard Wright, U. M. 12mo. pp. 12. Eaton and Teulon. 2d.
SEASONABLE little tract, A drawn up with judgment and candour, and under a strong conviction both of the right of free inquiry and of the supreme importance of divine revelation.
ART. V.-Thoughts on Suicide, in a
Letter to a Friend. 8vo. pp. 56. Payne and Foss, and Hunter. 1819. We doubt whether any good can UICIDE is a distressing subject. result from familiarizing the discussion of it to the public mind. In more than one instance, we have seen the mischievous consequences of making the lawfulness of it matter of debate. But if any publication on such a topic may be commended, it is that of the author before us, who, though he mitigates the crime and horror of suicide more than we quite approve, yet is so evidently swayed by pure benevolence, and preserves such a
cautious and reverential regard of morality and of Christianity, that no one can read his "Thoughts" and feel less disposed than before to watch against "presumptuous sins" or to pray that he may be " innocent from the great transgression."
ART. VI-A Letter to Lord John Russel on the Necessity of Parliamentary Reform, as recommended by Mr. Fox, and on the Expediency of Repealing the Corporation and Test Acts. 8vo. pp. 80. Hunter, and Rodwell and Martin. 1819.
HIS is a temperate, healing pamphlet, on subjects which have caused great divisions, and led to much violence. The Author is a Whig of the Fox school; he appears also to be an Unitarian Dissenter: yet he is as little of a partizan as it is possible for any man of decided opinions to be; he will not indiscriminately censure the present ministers, and he can see some good in a National Establishment of Religion. At the same time, he does not, like some writers that we know, confine his liberality and candour to the stronger party; his civility to the Church of England is not designed to sharpen his hostility to the Methodists, nor his toleration of the Tories to unite a greater force in persecution of the Radical Reformers,
In defending the rights of the Protestant Dissenters, Civis (for this is the writer's subscription to the letter) maintains those likewise of the Unitarians, especially as far as they were called in question by Mr. Shadwell, in the Wolverhampton Case.
The whole Letter displays ability, reading and Christian feeling. We wish it may have its proper influence on the mind of the noble person to whom it is addressed, in disposing him to bring forward in Parliament the great questions here discussed. But why the two questions are associated we do not exactly perceive; Parliamentary Reform has no more connexion with the Repeal of the Corporation and Test Acts, than with the abolition of Revenue Lotteries; though, perchance, both might follow from it.
In a note to a passage on uncharitable creeds, pp. 64, 65, the author
relates the following story from Latrobe's Anecdotes of Fred. II. King of Prussia:
"The nobles of Valangin deposed a clergyman of the reformed religion for having preached against eternal damnation. The Clergyman applied to the King for redress, who immediately issued an order, commanding them to replace the Clergyman in his benefice, and to act in future in a more tolerant and rational
In consequence of this, the nobles presented a long remonstrance, in which they, in the most submissive language, insisted upon their right to depose the Clergyman, and positively refused to reinstate him, as the people were determined to hear nothing said against the doctrine of eternal damnation. The King, who did not choose on this occasion to dispute their privileges, but yet had always he had issued, sent back their remon a great objection to contradict any order strance with these words added to the bottom, if my loving subjects of Valangin choose to be eternally damned, I have nothing to say against it.''
ART. VII.-American Unitarian Controversy, containing the Author's Defence of the Unitarian Doctrines against several Opponents; including also their Letters or Essays, &c. By John Wright of George Town, D (elaware) C (ounty), United States of America. 8vo. pp. 114. Liverpool printed; and sold by D. Eaton, London. 2s.
R. JOHN WRIGHT is well known to our readers as the person against whom the abortive prosecution for blasphemy was begun at Liverpool [Mon. Repos. XII. 244, 306, 431]. He has lately emigrated to America, and settled at George Town, near Washington, where (in Quaker phrase) he is bearing his testimony to Unitarianism. (See p. 458 of our present Vol.) The pamphlet before us is an interesting record of a controversy in the American newspapers, in which assumed orthodoxy appears on the other side of the water in the same character that it bears on this; presuming, censorious, intolerant and very much disposed to misrepresentation. But the cause of truth is in good hands, and we have no doubt that the result of Mr. Wright's judicious, temperate and persevering assertion of the Unitarian doctrine will be a large accession to the worshipers of the One God, the Father.
1819. June 23, at Paris, aged 76, M. PROSPER-GABRIEL AUDRAN, Professor of Hebrew of the French College. He was the son of the celebrated Audran, director of the Gobelin-Tapistry, whose house was the resort of many distinguished artists. The young Audran, who had naturally a taste for the arts, wished to embrace the profession of one of them; but his father, who destined him to the bar or the magistracy, made him pursue the requisite studies, and purchased for him in 1768 the charge of Counsellor of Justice at Paris. He carried to this dignity an inflexible integrity, which formed the foundation of his character. He displayed with his companions the firmness and the courage which then distinguished the tribunals and courts of justice, and he took his share of the disgraces and the injuries put upon them by the government. He was banished with his brethren in 1771, under the Chancellor Meaupou, and recalled in 1774, at the accession of Louis XVI.
At this period, he connected himself especially with the advocate M. Baudin, who died President of the Council of Ancients. This latter, who had drawn from the school of the Oratory more solid principles of religion than those that were then taught in the majority of seminaries, made it his duty to communicate them to his friend; and as M. Audran was naturally serious, he had no difficulty to understand and relish them thenceforward he gave himself up more particularly to the study of Holy Scripture, without at all neglecting his duties as a magistrate. After some years, being persuaded that it was, if not impossible, yet at least very difficult to reconcile the spirit of penitence with his magisterial functions, be sold his office to live in retirement, and to devote himself to the kind of life which appeared to him the most conformable to his divine model. He went to lodge in a small apartment (Rue des Maçons) near his mother, of whom he took a particular care until her death.
There he lived in his retreat,leading the life of a penitent, and meditating day and night upon the eternal truths which were all his consolation. To improve himself in Hebrew, to which he had applied principally since he had quitted the magistracy, he made acquaintance with M. Rivière, professor of this language in the College of France; he, on his side, finding in M. Audran all the aptitude necessary for mastering it and becoming a proficient in it, made him a friend, and presently a rival in his favourite pursuit. M. Audran made such progress under such a master, that on the death of M. Rivière, which happened a few years after he was judged worthy to succeed him'
His modesty led him to resist for some time, but he was at length constrained to yield to the intreaties of his friends, especially of M. Camus, then keeper of the national archives.
In his new appointment he displayed his wonted conscientious zeal. Not contented with public and stated lectures, be threw open his closet at all hours of the day to students. More than once he has been known to seek out those that were unavoidably absent from lecture, and to give them instructions at their own lodgings.
Though his income was considerable, his style of living was that of a hermit. He nursed his fortune for the poor; supporting a great number of families, educating children and setting out youths in the world. His last worldly act was to give the little money that he had in store to a friend for the benefit of the poor, wishing, as he expressed himself, to carry into the other world no wealth but what was current there.
One of his friends has drawn up for him the following monumental inscription:Hic jacet
Linguar. Hebr. Chald. et Syr, in Regio Prosper-Gabriel Audran,
Franciæ Collegio Professor.
In viis justicia ambulavit; propriæ laudis contemptor, soli Deo, et Doctus, doctrinæ sapientiam antetulit;
et factis, gloriam dare voluit;
vitam æternam constanter anbelavit; caritatis non fictæ, erga Deum et homines, mandatum implevit;
paupertatem et pacem amavit; pauperes, quos dotavit, defunctum, perpetuò lugebant; obdormivit in Dom. die 23 mens. Junii 1819, an, ætatis 76.
October 8, at Homburg von der Hohe, near Frankfort on the Mayne, in the 224 year of his age, MR. John WELLBELOVED, second son of the Rev. Charles Weilbeloved, and lately a divinity student in the Manchester College, York. The disorder, which carried him off, was a nervous fever; and probably arose from an excess of fatigue and excitement. The premature death of this amiable and promising young man is one of those mysterious appointments, which, however firm our trust in the wisdom and goodness of the Creator, must powerfully impress us with a sense of our own ignorance and our utter inabi lity to measure his unfathomable counsels.
Gifted by nature with superior talents,
and furnished by education with the amplest means for their development, he had already excited the fondest anticipations of future eminence and usefulness in all those by whom his worth was known. Every advantage of instruction and excitement which could promote their growth and hasten their expansion into the full bloom of excellence, seemed combined to fulfil the most sanguine wishes of his friends, when a sickness, as apparently casual in its origin as it was rapid in its progress and consummation, all at once threw a cloud on the fair prospect, and has left to his sorrowing survivors only a deep and painful conviction of the inscrutable purposes of Providence, and the pensive memory of virtues which are now no more. To dwell on the many amiable and excellent qualities of those whom we have loved, and retrace the lineaments of a friendship, whose sweet and genial influence once shed happiness on the social hour, is a pleasing, but, at the same time, a delicate and responsible task; and yet, to pass wholly in silence so much that was truly good, so much that must awaken our love, and may provoke imitation, to be denied the gratification of paying a slight tribute to the memory of departed worth, would be a privation at once painful and improper.
Perhaps no one ever had a more thoroughly warm, benevolent, and guileless heart, than the friend whose untimely death it is the sad office of these pages to record; had more of that universal rectitude and purity of feeling, which guided him aright, even in his gayest and most thoughtless hours, when imagination was on the wing, and reason had least direct influence on his actions. For an occasional warmth of temper, the result of a sanguine temperament and enthusiastic ardour of mind, and which his cooler judgment would have taught him to repress, he more than atoned by the total absence of every tincture of malevolence and selfishness, and by a generous and uniform readiness to acknowledge himself in error, when convinced, in his calmer moods, that he was so.
Of his intellectual character, if a friend may be permitted to speak, perhaps elegance of taste and quickness of perception were the distinguishing features. More disposed and better suited to the lively and elegant illustration of the meaning of others than to striking out new and original combinations of his own, or engaging in patient and laborious research, his mind was perhaps rather acute than comprehensive; his taste rather literary than philosophical. But he was young; and his mind, elegant and well-informed, as it certainly was, might have contained within it germs, yet undeveloped and unknown, which, had his life been spared, might have ripened, by the gentle dews
and mild sun-shiue of letters and philosophy, into still nobler fruits, and given the promise of even a fairer harvest.
But these, alas! will never blossom for us; transplanted, we believe, and religion is our glorious pledge, to more genial skies and a happier clime. Delightful, however, as are the anticipations of faith, and animating the hope of a final and indissoluble union, yet still it is a sweet and mournful satisfaction to remember what once he was, to recall those mild engaging manners, that gentle and benevolent spirit, those pure and pious dispositions, which once charmed and made happy the wide circle of mourners, who now deplore his loss; it is soothing to have offered these last dues to a friendship which now lives only in remembrance;
Accipe fraterno multùm manantia fletu, Atque in perpetuum, frater, ave atque
J. J. T.
Oct. 23, after a few days' illness, aged 65, JANE, the wife of Mr. Richard MANLEY, Sen. of Chowbent, Lancashire. She was the mother of a numerous family of children, twelve of whom arrived at years of maturity, and all, excepting the eldest daughter, who died about twelve months before her mother, now survive her. She was followed to the grave by the afflicted and bereaved partner of her joys and cares in life, accompanied by his eleven children, ten sons and daughters-in-law, and several of his grand-children, altogether forming a large group of family mourners, rarely witnessed. The sight was awfully impressive to those who viewed it. To the last week of her life," she looked well to the ways of her household. Her children rise up and call her blessed; her husband also, and he praiseth her." As an industrious and affectionate wife and mother, a kind and generous neighbour, she has left an example worthy the imitation of her numerous family and of all who knew her. B. R. D.
Nov. 3, in the 41st year of her age, MARY, the eldest daughter of Mr. CANNON, of Chowbent, Lancashire. Of a delicate habit of body from childhood, she bore the sufferings, generally attendant on such a constitution, with a degree of fortitude and patience truly Christian. During the last spring and summer, while disease was evidently hastening on her dissolution, aud her sufferings, at times, must have been very acute, she neither murmured nor complained, but was always placid, and resigned to the will of God. Educated in the principles of Unitarianism, they became the choice of her maturer age, and the foundations of her faith and hope. Rarely was she absent from her place of worship. Those unfavourable changes of the seasons, and those trifling bodily ailments
which too many think a sufficient excuse for the neglect of public worship, by her were disregarded; and if not entirely confined to the house by severe indisposition, she was a constant attendant on the ordinances of religion. Her afflicted parents, while mourning the loss they have thus sustained, on the verge of time, have this Christian consolation remaining, that they have followed to the grave that moral worth and excellence, which, in the great day of retribution, will conduce to their and her eternal joy.
B. R. D.
Nov. 4, in the 77th year of his age, at Allington, near Bridport, Mr. ANDREW ABBOT, a native of Bradford in Dorset shire, who always maintained a character that attracted the respect and attachment of those who knew him. For many years, in partnership with Mr. Turner, he carried on the business of a considerable China, glass, and Staffordshire warehouse, in Fleet Street, London; and on the Lord's day usually attended the religious services of the Rev. Mr. Tayler, in Little Carter Lane Meeting House. For some time past he had retired from business and resided at Weymouth, from whence he removed to this neighbourhood (with one of his daughters and another relation who lived with him) that he might be near to his deceased wife's connexions in Bridport, persons endeared to him also by the ties of friendship. Within a few weeks of this last removal, he was borne to his long home, "the house appointed for all living."
From frequent intercourse I had with Mr. Abbot some years ago, I found that he was a diligent reader of the sacred Scriptures, and that when he met with difficulties in the perusal of them, which had not previously arrested his attention, he usually committed them to writing, for more mature examination. This judicious method may be recommended to those who wish to understand what they read, as calculated eventually to give satisfaction to the mind, on passages in the records of divine revelation, which, at first view, appear obscure or inconsistent with others. Religious truth is of so invaluable a nature, as abundantly to repay the labours of those who, with fervent prayer to the Father of lights for his gracious blessing, seek for it as for hidden treasure.
For some time past Mr. Abbot experienced the infirmities which frequently attend declining years, and contribute to reconcile persons to that awful change by death, which is the appointed lot of man. Two of his precious senses, those of seeing and hearing, had been gradually decaying, and a fever, within a few days after he was seized with it, terminated his mortal existence. Great as was the trial which his bodily infirmities occasioned, he bore it with Christian equanimity,
having in himself a source of pleasing reflections. His mind was stored with a variety of useful knowledge, of which, indeed, he never made any ostentatious display; his judgment was sound and discriminating, and his disposition was placid and amiable in no common degree.
As to his religious sentiments, they were decidedly Unitarian, I visited him but two days before his death. He was aware of his approaching dissolution, and his mental faculties were as perfect as I ever knew them. On my speaking to him of the soothing consolations, which religion tends to afford the Christian in the most trying circumstances, he expressed his firm belief in the truth of Christianity, the greatest blessing that could be bestowed on man. He said, “ I derive much satisfaction from the views of it which the Unitarian doctrine presents. I am persuaded," he added, "there is but one God the Father, the only proper object of religious worship, and that our blessed Saviour derived all his powers from him " He dwelt with sacred pleasure on the paternal character of God, as represented in scripture, and on his infinite wisdom and boundless goodness. In his free mercy, as revealed by Jesus Christ, he declared, he reposed unshaken confidence for final acceptance. His gradual approach to the termination of his mortal course, with a mind stedfast in the Christian faith, and cheered with the hopes of the gospel, may be likened to a serene summer's evening, without a cloud to obscure its brightness. We are hereby reminded of the observation of the Psalmist (though from various causes there are some exceptions to this geucral rule), "Mark the perfect man, and behold the upright, for the end of that man is peace.”
Such a death bed scene, of a person, whose general life and conduct have been suitable to his Christian profession, is peculiarly instructive and interesting. It sweetly recommends a course of piety and virtue. It furnishes an additional instance of the efficacy of Unitarian principles, when properly understood, and their genuine influence have been felt in the heart and life, to support the mind under the afflictions to which frail humanity is subject, and in those solemn noments, when nature is sinking within us, and the ties which bind us to this mortal existence, are fast dissolving. It directs our views beyond the confines of the grave, to the second coming of Jesus Christ, and the glory and happiness which then await his faithful followers.
Who is there, if a witness to the scene above-described, that would not be dis posed to exclaim, "Let me die the death of the righteous, and let my latter end be like his"! T. HOWE.
Bridport, Nov. 13, 1819.