Зображення сторінки
PDF
ePub

PRINCIPAL DEFECT OF youth. 473 ambition of every individual of the great mass of mankind.

The principal defect in Youth is a want of foresight and consideration. The passions predominate over the understanding, and overwhelm the individual in misery. PRYDENCE, accompanied by Industry, draws after it the happiest consequences. And these should be inculcated upon Young People in the strongest terms. We must not expect from the young the calm reasonings and deliberate conduct of age: but we may infuse into them principles which will guide them through the labyrinth of life. They will thus tread with a more cautious step-they will avoid the snares by which thousands are entrapped and destroyed. Precipitation is the forerunner of ruin. But INDUSTRY to acquire, and Prudence to employ, the fruits of our labour, lay up solid comforts against the decrepitude of age. Look abroad, then, into the world; contrast the situation of individuals as to their qualities and conduct ;---the one passes through life with every possible comfort, whilst the other is harassed and overwhelmed with wretchedness :

Have you seen the delightless abode,

Where PENURY nurses Despair Where comfortless Life is a load

Age wishes no longer to bear ? Ah! who in this LAZAR-HOUSE pent

His lone wailings sends up to the skies? 'Tis The Man whose young prime was mispent,

'Tis he who so bitterly sighs!

[ocr errors][merged small]

Have you seen the delectable place

Where honour's Age loves to abide;
Where Plenty and Pleasure and Peace

With Virtue and Wisdom reside ?
AUTUMN's fruits he has carefully stor’d,

His herds, willing tributes abound,
And the smiles of his plenteous board

By his CHILDREN'S children are crown'd!

If such a bright prospect can charm,

If you feel emulation arise ;
If your juvenile bosom is warm

With the hope to be wealthy and wise ;
0! cherish TAB NOBLE DBSIGN,

The maxims of Prudence pursue ;
Application and Industry join,

'Tis the way FICKLE FORtune to woo!

Early cultivate Virtue's rich seeds,

These will fruits in Life's winter display;
Ne'er defer till to-morrow good deeds

That as well might be finish'd TO-DAY.
For Age and EXPERIENCE can tell,

And you'll find, when you grow an Ol.D MAN,
That it's never too late to no well;
You will wish you had SOONER began!

N. BLOOMFIELD.

By procuring a comfortable competency you not only ward off the evils of Poverty, and soften down the asperities of Age, but your character assumes an additional respectability in the eye of mankind. This respectability will be increased and established by having it in your power to perform acts of CHARITY towards the distressed. And what a blessing, thus to

COUNCILS OF PRUDENCE.

475

relieve not only the wants of individuals, but to sup-
port liberally those INSTITUTIONS whose object is
either to banish ignorance, or to diminish the cor-
poreal maladies of human kind. This is, indeed, to
use the language of Holy Writ, becoming eyes to the
blind, ears to the deuf, and making the widow's
heart to sing for joy. “In nothing," says an ancient
philosopher, “ does man more resemble the Deity
than in conferring benefits on his fellow-creatures !”
Youth of both Sexes will do well to attend to the
Counsels of Prudence, which are identified with the
dictates of SUBSTANTIAL WISDOM and UNAFFECTED
PIETY. Remote from the meanness of avarice, and
the wretchedness of parsimony, you will pass through
life with respectability and success. Instead of being
burdensome, you will be an assistance to others; in-
stead of injuring a fellow-creature, you will bestow
upon him substantial blessings. Such a man renders
himself a pre-eminently useful member of society
KNOWLEDGE leads to Virtue, Virtue invites to Re-
ligion, and RELIGION points to the skies as the
only region of pure and perfect enjoyment. Well may
we exclaim, in the energetic words of the Poet-
Nor shall the Pile of Hope his mercy rear'd,

By vain Philosophy be e'er destroy'd;
Eternity by ALL or wish'd or fear'd

Shall be by all or SUFFER'D or BNJOY'D!

MASON.

To conclude, in the words of the pious and judicious DR. NATHANIEL LARDNER, who, on account of his

476

ADDING VIRTUE TO PRUDENCE.

elaborate defence and lucid explications of Christianity, has been denominated the Prince of modern Divines-it is the closing paragraph of his admirable Discourse, entitled Counsels of Prudence, addressed to Young People—advising them, agreeably to the intimations of our blessed Saviour, to mingle the wisdom of the serpent along with the harmlessness of the dove-“May you, then, add Virtue to Prudence, and abound in both yet more and more,

that

you may escape the snares of the Wicked and the misapprehensions of the Weak-may have success in business, acceptance with mankind, happiness in friendship and every private relation may be useful members of Society and of the Church of God--may enjoy contentment and peace of mind in all events, and at length obtain the distinguished recompense which God, who is infinitely wise and holy, will bestow upon those who have not only been undefiled in the wny, Psalm cxix. 1, but have also advanced the wel. fare of their FELLOW-CREATURES, and the honour of his name in THE WORLD."

I have in my possession a Letter of Dr. Philip Doddridge's, given me by his Daughter, in 1807, at Tewkesbury, as a memorial of her father. It has upon it the impression of his own private favourite seal-a Serpent with his tail in his mouth, having the Dove in the centre, with this motto on the edgeVos ambo amo, I LOVE YOU BOTH! This-shews how deeply this excellent Man and candid Divine had entered into the spirit of Christianity. Indeed, when

TERMINATION OF THE VOYAGE.

477

we contemplate DODDRIDGE and LARDNER among the Dissenters, as well as Porteus and WATSON in the Church of England, the Religion which, though in different and even opposite communions, hath produced such men, bears inscribed upon it no mean stamp of divinity. Not Creeds, but CHARACTER, it was the object of Revelation to promote and establish among mankind. Imperious are the claims of Divine truthbut supereminently beautiful and irresistibly attractive is the luminous grace of CHRISTIAN CHA

RITY.

morn

As the clock struck nine, enveloped by the shades of darkness, we found our peaceful little vessel, THE Dove, close to the wharf at Chatham. From to dewy eve,twelve hours had been consumed in the expedition. Somewhat wearied by the number and extent of the scenes through which we had passed, we hailed our return-and, leaping on shore, I, with my two sons and much-esteemed companions, finished our AQUATIC EXCURSION:

As equable in its progress, and as felicitous in its termination, may our Voyage through Life, my dear Sir, prove-reaching at length the thrice welcome Haven of Rest! Quies in Cælo, in Heaven there is rest—and Resurgam, I shall rise again-as well as Mors Janua Vita, Death is the Gate of Life-the usual inscriptions on the sable hatchment-are indicative, even amidst the pomp of heraldry, of the otject to which the mind of man is directed in the awful article of Dissolution. A future State of Happiness,

[ocr errors]
« НазадПродовжити »