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We have sufficient evidence from the diary, and a prayer that he might so direct the future that William Allen did not, at this time, rest counsels of the nation, to such further acts of satisfied with a merely philosophical religion, but justice and mercy as might promote his glory in that he was concerned to seek for the sensible the harmony of his rational creation. Those evidence of the Divine Master's countenance and who have attentively regarded the subsequent support; and that his prayers were often put up measures of the British government in the extincfor himself and for the young people under his tion of slavery throughout their extensive domicare.
nions, may probably incline to the sentiment that As William Allen was not satisfied with a this prayer was not entirely unavailing. mere superficial knowledge of nature, and the The activity of William Allen is often indioperation of natural causes, so we find him, in the cated by the notes in his diary. We have had summer of 1804, descending the miné of Dol- occasion to follow him, on a former day, to the coath, in Cornwall
, eleven hundred feet below mines of Dolcoath ; in the present year (1807) the surface of the earth, to examine with his own we find him and one of his friends visiting the eyes the buried wonders of the mineral world. north of England, ascending the loftiest mounThere amidst continual moisture dropping from tains in the neighbourhood, measuring their the rocks, and sometimes ankle deep in mud, he height with a barometer, and afterwards making examined, by a thermometer which he carried the calculations by which the 'altitudes were to with him, the temperature of the water and the be deduced from their observations. The reair in those subterraneous abodes; traversing, in sults, compared with those of other observers, these explorations, a narrow passage cut out of afforded satisfactory evidence of their correctness. the solid rock, nearly a quarter of a mile. Four And in juxtaposition with these notices of his hours were thus passed below the surface of the philosophic labours, we find him gratefully acearth.
knowledging the soul-sustaining evidence of the A visit of this character, to the dark recesses Divine presence which he was favoured to exof the mine, and the sight of the labourers who perience during the silent part of a meeting for were toiling from year to year, far removed from worship. the light of day, amidst the humidity and noxious At this time the people of Great Britain being gases which those deep sunk caverns frequently greatly agitated by the events of the war with evolve, could hardly fail to impress such a mind France, and the continent of Europe apparently as his, with a lively sense of the hardships and quailing before the Emperor Napoleon, William privations inseparable from the life of a miner.' Allen remarks : “ How. all this will terminate
In the year 1805, William Allen continued must be left; but I seem increasingly convinced his lectures at the hospital and the Royal Insti- that the less our Society mingle in the politics of tution; but in addition to these labours, he was the world the better. Our part is to stand still, placed, about that time, on the committee for the humbly trust, and even suffer, if permitted, in abolition of the slave trade; and his exertions the support of our peaceable principles.” were frequently united with those of Thomas In the spring of 1808, we find William Allen, Clarkson, in the promotion of that righteous together with his friends Luke Howard and cause. His house was for a long time the home Frederick Smith, joining a small society which of that devoted champion of the negro race, when was formed with a view of diminishing the numhe was prosecuting his labours in London. ber of capital punishments. On this he remarks,
On the 25th of 3d month, 1807, the bill for “Every thing, however small, which we do abolishing the African slave-trade received the under a sense of duty, and with a desire that it royal assent; soon after which, the friends of may be acceptable to the Supreme Being, and African civilization held a meeting, at which every thing we patiently suffer as a permission William Allen was present, to consider the from him, tends to nourish the spiritual life.” means for promoting this object. A society was
as Having, in the latter part of the preceding then formed, called the African Institution, of year, been elected a fellow of the Royal Society, which the Duke of Gloucester, who presided at he appears to have been preparing, in the sumthe meeting, was chosen president. This Duke, mer of this, to lay the result of some interesting it may be remembered, separated from his royal experiments before that body, but the state of relations while the abolition of the slave trade mental poverty which he experienced, excite 1 was under discussion in parliament, and gave his an apprehension that he was permitting his mini influence in support of the measure. As the ob- to be improperly absorbed by subjects of this ject of this association was to promote the civili- nature. His pious mother, also, fearful that his zation of that injured continent, William Allen ardent pursuits of scientific acquirements would gave a large portion of his energy and time to its divert his mind from objects of greater imporconcerns; he becoming one of its directors. tance, addressed one or more letters to him, from
It may be observed that, in the Yearly Meet- which the following are extracts : “He who has ing of London succeeding the abolition of this loved thee from thy earliest youth, has called traffic, a minute was made expressive of thank- thee to love him above all, to dedicate thyself to fulness to the Almighty for this important event, I him, to surrender thy all to him to be made use of
as he shall direct. The reins of government appeared to be remarkably preserved from the should not be in thy hands, but in his, to turn temptations which surrounded him. thee into the path he may in future appoint, and In childhood, he exhibited unusual sweetness out of what thou, as a man, wouldst have chosen of disposition, and great warmth of affection for for thyself. It is not the strength of natural all the members of his family circle; and this affection which leads me to say thou wast not love increased and deepened, until it embraced intended to spend all thy time in earthly pur- the whole family of man. In very early life suits, but through submission to the operation of we find him expressing in his private journal an that Power which creates anew, thou art designed earnest desire, firstly, that he may be found lovto lead the minds of others, both by example ing and serving his God and Saviour with his and precept, from earth to heaven. I believe it whole heart; and secondly, that he may love may be said of thee, as was said to Peter, Satan his neighbour as himself, and be always on the hath desired to have thee that he may sift thee watch to render service to his fellow-beings by as wheat; but I humbly hope that the same Ad- every means in his power. Great care was vocate will plead for thee, that thy faith fail not. taken with his education, and he exhibited, in I again intreat thee to consider the necessity of his approach to manhood, considerable acquisetting thyself more at liberty in future. Thou sitions in science and classical literature. art too much absorbed in study, my beloved child, He was at an early period brought into a for however innocent it may be, yet, like the close attention to business, in his connexion with doves in the temple, it fills up a place in the the extensive establishment belonging to his temple of thy heart which ought to be otherwise family: but whilst entering into the active occupied, and dedicated to the Lord, in whose scenes of life, with the most flattering prospects, hands thou wouldst become an instrument to his mind still appears to have been religiously promote the knowledge of pure christianity. disposed; and his private memorandums at this Come, my beloved child, if a right hand or a time sufficiently evince that he was brought to right eye be called for, give it up. The Lord consider religion as the great business of his life, loves a cheerful giver, and he will restore thee -his duty to God and his neighbours as the an hundred fold."
moving principle of action; and the views
which he took of himself were of the most A TESTIMONY
humbling and abasing nature. Of Norwich Monthly Meeting, concerning Thus circumstanced, it became of great im
Joseph John GURNEY, deceased. portance that he should be decided as to his reWith a deep feeling of sorrow for the loss ligious course; and we find that, in his twentywhich we have sustained in the death of our fourth year, he was brought into much serious beloved and much valued friend, accompanied, thoughtfulness, and even conflict of mind, on as we trust, with submission to the Divine will, the subject of uniting himself more closely to we feel it right to issue the following testimony the Society of which he was a member by birth; on his behalf.
and towards the close of the same year, resignJoseph John Gurney was the third son of John ing himself in the simplicity of a little child to and Catharine Gurney, and was born at Earlham, the unerring guidance of the Holy Spirit, he near Norwich, on the 2nd of Eighth month, was enabled, though surrounded by adverse cir1788. He was one of cleven children, whó cumstances, to make a full surrender; and he were deprived, whilst he was in his infancy, maintained, with holy boldness, the principles of the tender care and oversight of their pious and testimonies of the Society through the reand affectionate mother. They were objects of mainder of his life. the tender solicitude of their numerous friends, During this period, he mentions a particular as they advanced in life, under the guidance of case, in which he felt it to be his duty to take a kind and indulgent father, and being brought up his cross in the self-denying path which he up under circumstances which naturally intro- had chosen, and on which he makes the followduced them to scenes of gaiety and amusement, ing reflections :—“I now feel thankful and at it must be acknowledged that their young and ease, and I trust that the experience of the last sensitive minds, their ardent and amiable dispo- week has been confirming, through mercy, to sitions, were in no small danger of being led my general faith. I humbly desire to be enastray from the simplicity and purity of our abled to look to Christ as a precious Saviour who Christian profession.
has shed his blood for me, and to love and obey This period was also one of great religious him without reserve; conscious however that and political excitement, to which our dear nothing can be done in my own strength. In friend was much exposed; yet we believe, that thus entering more completely into a small soat this time he was the special object of Divine ciety of Christians, I feel satisfied on the ground regard; and those who, in Christian love, often of believing that they do hold the doctrine of looked upon him with anxiety, were comforted Christ, in many respects, in more original purity in observing that, as he advanced in years, he than any other sect. But, whilst thus impressed,
I earnestly hope I shall ever be able to stand on In the year 1821 he commenced that extena broad basis, whereon I can heartily unite sive religious service in various parts of England, with all Christians. I desire a catholic spirit, which in a few years had embraced almost every a truly humbled and dependent mind, an in- county, including London and its neighbourcrease of faith, hope, and watchfulness, and hood. In many of these engagements, family knowledge of scriptural truth.”
visits formed a part of his labours, and in most, In the Ninth month, 1817, he married Jane if not all of them, public meetings with those Birkbeck, the daughter of John and Martha not of our religious Society: for which service Birkbeck, of Lynn, in this county, who was the he was eminently qualified. mother of his two children: but this union, pro- In the early part of the year 1827 he visited ductive of much comfort during its continuance, Ireland, in company with his sister Elizabeth was terminated by the unexpected death of his Fry and her husband's sister Elizabeth Fry. wife in 1822.
This weighty engagement included a visit to the For many months before our beloved friend Yearly Meeting of Dublin, the several Quarspoke in the ministry, he seems to have passed terly Meetings, and most of the particular through deep conflict, and even sore tempta- meetings of that island, as well as many public tion and depression : and earnest was his prayer meetings. We believe this visit was attended that the hand of discipline might bring him into with great benefit and satisfaction; and the a state of greater holiness and nearness to God, cause of benevolence was not forgotten, as it that He would condescend yet to purify, help, comprised also a careful examination of the and guide him; and that he might ever feel his prisons in that country, and concluded by a own unworthiness. His prayer was heard; for representation to the Government thereon. soon after he writes :—“How beautifully has In the Seventh month, 1827, he was married the atmosphere cleared! and, after some of the to Mary Fowler, the daughter of Robert and deepest conflicts I have ever yet gone through, Rachel Fowler, of Melksham, in whom he how delightful a calm am I introduced into found an affectionate and sympathizing helpHow do I desire to be bowed down in thankful- meet. ness to the God of my life for his abundant Many visits were paid by him in sundry parts blessings. How do I desire to receive from of England during the three following years ; Him a renewed ability to love and serve Him and one in particular to the School at Ackwith my whole heart.” He then alludes to his worth, an establishment, for the prosperity of mouth having been opened in the ministry since which he was deeply concerned, and which his last entry in his journal, in the little meet- always partook largely of his solicitude. For ing at Lynn; and adds, “ I was made sensible many years he regularly attended its General of great peace and happiness afterwards.” On Meetings, and was much engaged in promoting a review, at a later period, of this his first ap- every effort for the improvement of its plans, pearance in the ministry in our religious meet the further extension of its usefulness, and parings, he remarks as follows:-“Oh! the delight-ticularly the religious education of the children. ful flow of quiet happiness which continued to Its prosperity lay very near his heart. be my portion through the whole of that day! During this course of constant dedication to No words can adequately set it forth, and the the service of his Lord, he was again visited by savour of it is even now fresh in my remem- domestic affliction, in the loss of his beloved brance.” His communications proceeded, we wife, whom it pleased our Heavenly Father to believe, from the only real and true source of remove by death, after a short illness, in the instruction, and were accompanied with that year 1835. Although this stroke was severely anointing which rendered them powerful and felt, his labours of love were not long suspended; convincing to bis hearers: under this convic- but, having visited this year North Wales and tion he was recorded as an acknowledged minis- other parts, he obtained a certificate in 1836 to ter on the 11th of Sixth month, 1818. visit the North of England and Scotland, hold
In the autumn of the same year a minute was ing meetings throughout. granted him to attend the General and other
For many years his mind had been impressed Meetings in Scotland in company with his sister, with a belief that it would be required of him Elizabeth Fry. During this journey, consider to give himself up to a visit, in the love of the ing it a part of his Christian duty, he also visit- Gospel, to the Society of Friends and others in ed most of the prisons in Scotland and the North North America, and after much conflict of mind of England, and published the result of his ex- he was brought to lay this subject before his aminations in a valuable little work, immedi- friends. ately after his return, which we believe pro It appears, that just previously to his setting duced a great effect, in promoting much of that out on this journey, he made the following reform which took place about this time, in the striking memorandums on taking a review of his construction and management of these abodes of past life, with many of its exercises and exwretchedness and crime.
periences. _“I can with truth acknowledge
that no greater means of usefulness and happi- generally, with a view of promoting the aboliness have fallen in my way than our week-day tion of slavery throughout the world. meetings. Their quietness, the seriousness of He returned to the United States in the · those Friends who are in the regular habit of Fourth month, 1840, and was favoured to reach attending them, the sweet feeling of unity in his own home in safety and in peace, on the our worship, and the liveliness of the ministry 19th of the Eighth month following, after an sometimes uttered on these occasions, are all absence of three years. hallowed in my mind and feelings; and were I On a review of this journey shortly afterasked what had been the happiest portion of my wards, he made the following memorandum :life, I believe I should not be far wrong in re-“ An absence of excitement,-an unbroken plying,—the hours abstracted from the common tranquillity, are my happy portion. The broad business of the world for the purpose of public seal of the Spirit of my God seems conspicuousworship. The sacrifice is greater than that ly to rest on the labours, perils, exercises, and which we have to make on the First day of the engagements of the last three memorable years. week, when all business ceases; and the reward The Lord be praised! The Lord alone be graciously bestowed has been to me, and I praised !" believe to many others, great in proportion. In the Sixth month, 1841, he was liberated May none of my young friends and relatives, for religious service in some parts of the north who belong to our Society, ever throw them- of Europe, including the Hague, Copenhagen, selves out of the way of so precious a privi- and Berlin, for visiting the meetings of Friends lege!"
at Pyrmont and Minden, and for holding public He sailed from Liverpool on the 8th of meetings beyond their limits. In this journey Seventh month, 1837, and landed at Phila- he had the company of his beloved sister Elizadelphia on the 24th of the following month. beth Fry. At the close of this year, on looking forward In the Tenth month of the same year he was to arduous service in the further prosecution of united in marriage to Eliza Paul Kirkbride, the work in which he was then engaged, he daughter of Joseph and Mary Kirkbride, of writes :-“ I trust I am made deeply sensible of Philadelphia; with whom he lived in close and my own unworthiness and unfitness for the affectionate union until the period of his death: work. Oh! Lord, in the plenitude of thy and who was associated with him in all his submercies, undertake for me, and let thy own sequent religious engagements. glorious works praise Thee. It is a solemn
(To be continued.) thing for me to close the present year; and a cause of unutterable thankfulness in looking back upon past conflicts, that I am permitted to close
PASCAL. it in peace. Praise the Lord, O my soul! and all that is within me bless and hallow His glo- The pleasant article in reference to this illusrious name!”
trious man, which appeared in the last two In the course of this arduous engagement, our numbers of this journal, has recalled to my
recolbeloved friend visited most of the settlements lection a paper in the Edinburg Review, in of Friends on the American Continent, includ- which his character is beautifully as alysed, and ing those in Canada, held numerous public is summed up in the following eloquent words: meetings, and visited Friends in their families “On the whole, in contemplating the richly in many places: and the testimonials with diversified characteristics of this exalted genius which he was furnished on his return acknow- in its different moods and phases—the combinaledged that his public ministry had been acception of sublimity and depth with lightness and table and edifying, his private labours instruc- grace-of the noblest aptitudes for abstract tive and encouraging, and his life and conver- speculation with the most exquisite delicacy of sation consistent with his Christian profession. taste and the utmost sensibility of feeling of Towards the close of this visit he sailed for the profound melancholy with the happiest and the West Indies, where he had religious service in most refined humour and raillery-the grandeur the Danish, and in some of the British Islands. of many aspects of his character, and the loveThis visit to the West Indies also afforded him liness of others, we seem to be reminded of the an opportunity of witnessing the happy results contradictory features of Alpine scenery, where which had attended the emancipation of the all forms of sublimity and beauty, of loveliness Negroes in the English colonies. To one who and terror, are found in singular proximity; had so long and so zealously laboured to effect where upland valleys of exquisite verdure and this great and wonderful change, such an oppor- softness lie at the foot of the eternal glaciers ; tunity could not fail to be deeply interesting. where spots of purest pastoral repose and beauty, And he embraced every suitable occasion after-smile under the very shadow of huge snowy wards of bringing the subject before the notice peaks, and form the entrance of those savage of those in authority, as well as of the public gorges, in which reign perpetual sterility and
For Friends' Review,
desolation; in which the very silence is appal- the opposite side, and say, “Alas! after Pascal ling-broken only by the roar of the distant seems in many expressions to have conceded cataract, and the lonely thunder of the ava- much to scepticism, he forgets all he had said; lanche.”
and shows, by his whole talk of intuitive It appears that Pascal, however, has other truths, and sentiment,' and feeling,' that he oppönents than his old enemies the Jesuits—the is no better than a dogmatist.' Might we not well known French philospher and historian say to the two objectors, Worthy friends! you Cousin has preferred against one whose life was are the two knights in the fable; -one is looka testimony to his firm belief in christianity, ing on the golden, and the other on the silver the charge of having advocated scepticism in side of the same shield."" his writings. Some of the arguments by which The following passage from the same able the able writer in the Review refutes this writer contains reflections so just and so forcibly charge are interesting to me, as laying down in enunciated, that I cannot resist the temptation clear and forcible language a rule which is of to quote them :very general application. Speaking of Pascal's “ That man, who lives in a dwelling of clay, opinions as to the demonstrative nature of the and looks out upon the illimitable universe proofs of christianity, founded on reasoning through such tiny windows—who stands, as alone, he remarks:
Pascal sublimely says, between “two infinitudes' “ While we admit that the severely geometri
--who is absolutely surrounded by mysteries, cal cast of Pascal's mind, as well as his gloomy which he overlooks only because he is so fatemperament, have led him at times into extrava- miliar with them, should doubt a proposition gant expressions on this subject, so accomplished (otherwise well sustained) from its intrinsic difa critic as M. Cousin needs not to be told, that it ficulty, does not seem very reasonable. But is not fair to take such expressions alone, and in when we further reflect that that very mind their utmost strictness, if they can be confronted which erects itself into a standard of all things, with others which modify or explain them. is, of all things, the most ignorant of that which The former, in common candour, are to be in- it ought to know best—itself, and finds there terpreted only in connexion with the latter. the most inscrutable of all mysteries ;-when This is the course we always pursue in inter- we reflect that when asked to declare what itpreting the language of writers who have in- self is, it is obliged to confess that it knows dulged in unlimited propositions; and if it be nothing about the matter-nothing either of its found even impossible to harınonize certain ex- own essence or its mode of operation--that it is pressions--if they be absolutely contradictory- sometimes inclined to think itself material, and all we feel at liberty to do is to affirm the in- sometimes immaterial—that it cannot quite come consistency of the writer; not to assume that to a conclusion whether the body really exists he meant all that could possibly be implied in or is a phantom, or in what way (if the body the one class of expressions, and nothing by the really exist) the intimate union between the two other. We know it is so natural for an author is maintained ;-when we see it perplexed beof much imagination or sensibility to give an yond expression, even to conceive how these inordinateiy strong expression to a present phenomena can be reconciled-proclaiming it thought or feeling, and to forget the judge in to be an almost equal contradiction to suppose the advocate, that he must be taken in another that Matter can think, or the Soul be material, mood, or rather in several, if we wish to ascer- or a connexion maintained between two totally tain the true mean of his sentiments. Pascal different substances, and yet admitting that one has in one of his Pensées indicated this only of these must be true, though it cannot satisfacreasonable method of procedure.
torily determine which ;-when we reflect on “ Now, M. Cousin is surely aware of the fact, all this, surely we cannot but feel that the specthat the expressions to which he has given such tacle of so ignorant a being refusing to believe an unfavourable interpretation, may be easily a proposition merely because it is above its comconfronted with others of a different tendency. prehension, is of all paradoxes the most paraHe himself, indeed, proclaims it. He even doxical, and of all absurdities the most lusays, no man ever contradicted himself more dicrous.”
C. than Pascal.
“Now, we do not stay to inquire here into the justness of the latter part of this representa
VISIT TO HUMBOLDT. tion; but we simply ask, why should all the I had gone over in the Washington, the pioreplies' which, as our author admits, “Pascal neer of the American mail-steamers, to Bremen, has himself made to scepticism,' go for nothing, and was striking over the continent for a paseo and only the sentences in which he appears to on the Rhine, and to intercept the steamer at favour it be remembered; and not only remem- Southampton on her return to New York. I bered, but taken as the sole exponents of his bad but a day for Berlin. There was but one opinions ? Surely a sceptic might as well take object in it I had any special desire to see, and