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to speak the word without fear : and whenever, and wherever, Christ is preached of love, we therein do rejoice, yea, and will rejoice. For we know that this shall turn to our salvation, and our Church's preservation, through our earnest prayer, and the supply of the Spirit of Jesus Christ.
“ OCCUPY TILL I COME."
To the Editor of the Christian Obserrer. In referring to your last No., page 597, I perceive that you have appended a few remarks of your own to my paper on " laying up treasure upon earth.” Those remarks are just and well-timed; and have suggested to me the following observations concerning a particular class of persons who are not included in my exposition of " lay not up for yourselves treasures upon earth.”. I allude to that part of our community who are placed in independent circumstances, so as not to require to “ labour" for their maintenance ; and I perfectly agree with yourself, in thinking that the “levelling system” would not only be destructive of the best interests of our country, but would be a breaking down of that civil system ordained by the providence of God, who has placed us in our several stations, and given talents “to each according to his several ability." (Matt. xxv. 15) The independent class among us occupy a most important place in the community; and whilst they are not called to “labour with their hands," they are yet commanded by Christ to “occupy till I come." To those in this class of society, who are not engaged in the civil or military services, or in the learned professions, we justly look for the fulfilment of those duties which seem more particularly to devolve upon individuals who have their time and property under their own controul. They ought to be the best-informed and the most polished of the community: such qualifications fitting them to be legislators and magistrates, to take the lead in literary and scientific pursuits, to patronize education and the arts, and to aid all those institutions which have for their end the amelioration of society, and the benefit of the distressed. Would any person of sane mind, call such a class of men useless ?. Should it not rather be viewed as the upholder of all that is fair and polished in civil society, giving strength to, and casting a grace over, all the best institutions of our land? Is the tradesman to leave his counter, and the merchant to forsake his desk, in order to fulfil such onerous duties and if they did so, would they be “occupying" their own post ? Well would it be for our country, if each would attend to his own duty, and not meddle with things which properly belong to others. The followers of the learned professions alone can aid the independent elass in some of these pursuits, which may indeed prove a recreation to the middling classes, but which would inevitably fall into decay if left to them entirely for support and active promotion.
The very objection, therefore, made against the existence of an independent class by the demagogues of our day, because they perceive not its usefulness, proves the necessity of its existence, inasmuch as they thus virtually acknowledge that they understand not the importance of those functions which properly devolve upon this part of the community; and therefore they would never care to perform them,
A man must indeed have his eyes shut, or his intellect rendered
obtuse, who does not know that many of our independent class do actually “occupy" the station allotted to them by Providence.
In no country of the world do the nobility and gentry grace their rank so much as do our own, in the present day. But the main evil is here, that whilst in this as in other ranks of society, many spend the main part of their time in inglorious ease or pleasure, the usual recreations of our upper classes are too frequently of a useless or hurtful character. If our gentlemen would exchange the pleasures of the chase for the healthful exercise of superintending their own estates; and if the haunts of dissipation and vice were deserted, in order to frequent literary, religious, and benevolent societies, and to overlook the condition of their own peasantry (as is the honourable practice of many of the rich and great), then would they put to silence the cavils of agitators and demagogues; men who pick up the faults, but forget to report the yirtues, of their superiors.
Then again, if, instead of the midnight dance and the heated theatre, the independent women of our nation would“ occupy” their time in overlooking their own families, and seeing that the interests of their households were attended to occupations which require no bodily "labour," but which no substitute can adequately perform ;-if they "visited the fatherless and widows in their affliction,”--if they esteemed it an honour to be the messengers of mercy to mankind—and if the grace derived from the elegant accomplishments of their rank were diffused in benignity around them ;-then would they not be regarded as useless members of civil society, but would he hailed and honoured as its brightest ornament and loveliest charm. Religion wishes no man to leave his post, or dissipate his substance, but to “occupy" it to the glory of God, to the good of man, and to his own real interest and best happiness.
R. M. M.
REVIEW OF NEW PUBLICATIONS.
DUNLOP ON THE DRINKING USAGES OF GREAT BRITAIN
Britain and Ireland; containing the characteristic, and exclusively
prisons, We are astonished, we might say offices, and theatres, and trom in horrified, in reading this volume. and workhouses, arises from We were not ignorant that drunk- toxicating potions, tha sources enness is an awful sin and fearful nine-tenths of all other abitual curse ; that more of the crime, put together ; that the h and pauperism, and misery ex- use of ardent spirits, even hibited in our streets, and police. not carried to the excess of
inebriation,—to which however it but ignorant we certainly were of too fatally and frequently leads,- theextent to which drinking usages is still, under its milder forms, are carried in the extensive rami. except when strictly requisite fications of British Society. It is
a medicine, ruinous to the indeed upon the surface of things, health and the morals, the body that births, baptisms, marriages, and the mind,-nay, when re- and deaths; events joyful and quisite for one disorder, often painful ; dinners political and causing worse diseases than it municipal ; canvassings and eleccures; nor had we any doubt as tions; contracts and performance, to the duty and necessity of beginnings and finishings, are too attempting to stay this plague ; or often celebrated with “a jolly full any hesitation as to the sound and bottle;"t-and no man is unaware Scriptural principle, or practical utility, of Temperance Societies
knowledge of the circumstances to pronounce any opinion upon them; but
the broad fact stands out, that the We write thus, because a strange germ of this religious “revival ” was a objection has been made against Tem- Temperance institution. perance Societies, that “they are not † We should not have allowed our. doing God's work.” If by this be selves to quote this vulgar Anacreontic meant, that temperance is not piety, phrase, but for the sake of again ex. wby neither is justice or charity ; nor pressing our surprise, indignation, and are hospitals, or alınshouses, or a police, abhorrence, that a song with this title or even churches or religious institu- should be the favourite piece selected tions; and yet all these are right and to be sung at public Conservative din. proper things in themselves, and may ners, when “ the toast” of “ the also become instruments of spiritual Church " is given. (See our note upon benefit. Sure we are that drunkenness the Bolton, the Liverpool, and other does not aid God's work ; but to make church-and-king dinners, 1836, p. 731.) drunkards sober, may do so; for a At best it is not seeming to turn sober man is more likely to go to serious and sacred things into “ toasts;" church, and to be led to consider and and it is exceedingly painful to hear a pray, than a drunkard. A pair of shoes fellow at a tavern, selected for his is not religion; but if as many anti-re- powers of vociferation, roar out from ligious consequences arose from shoe- behind the president's chair, “ Gentlelessness as from drunkenness, we should men, please to charge your glasses—a hail a shoe-promoting society.
bumper-success to the Church of It has been further objected that England ;" with a full chorus of “Hip, Temperance Societies would do God's Hip, Hip, hurrah, hurrah, hurrah ! work by man's means. We cannot see But if it be replied that the intention, why promoting temperance should be not the precise ceremony, must be constigmatised as man's means, any more sidered; that nothing more is meant than promoting anything else relating than a mark of respect to the person or to health, comfort, morality, national institution toasted; and that excellent welfare; or repressing vice and crime. and truly religious speeches are elicited It is God's mcans so far as it is blessed from lay or clerical friends of the by him, and rendered subservient to his Church, which do much good; still, glory; or as it is made to conduce to why sbould this particular toast be the any real good, or to counteract any signal for an Anacreontic song; given, evil; and above all as it leads to as we are often told, “ with admirable spiritual benefits. “ The ploughing of effect, amidst much laughter and apthe wicked is sin;" but we are not plause." The red, staring prints of therefore to denounce agricultural drinking fox-hunting dinners used insocieties. Those who think there is variably to present a clergyman as a any solidity in the objection, will per. prominent object, with a monstrous haps attach some weight to the fact, wig, in disarray; a broad round face that the nucleus of the extraordinary gules; and a “jolly full bottle” ramevents which are exciting so much pant in his hand; and no doubt the attention at this moment in Scotland, artists considered they did the church was the establishment of a Temperance much honour by such convivial porSociety in the parish in which they traits, which the dearth of goodly wigs originated. We bave not sufficient and fox-hunting parsons in these reway of
of these practices; but we had not is humiliating to think that this imagined the extent of compul- country, with all its religion and sory, customary, or expected philanthropy; all its institutions usages, in almost every trade, and of science, literature, piety, and among artizans and all persons morality; is more entangled, more concerned in manual labour ;- hemmed in, with the meshes of usages, for the most part, peculiar drinking usages than any nation to Great Britain and Ireland. It in the world; so that powerful
temptations are placed in the forming days must have sadly spoiled, of an operative or tradesman in
person in the rank Yet even in those times“ the church and a jolly full bottle was, we trust, going through the usual stages of more of a jest than a history; but in his career, to acquire a taste ours, when professional decorum is cus
for potent, especially spirituous, tomary even where true godliness is not found, the juxta-position is as mis- liquors. And hence arises an placed as it is offensive. We would obstacle in the path of Tempersooner sit and hear the farmers at an ance Societies which has not been anti-tithe dinner, , drink “No black duly considered ; an obstacle to slugs in our corn, than this popular which we cannot but attribute (in Church and Conservative song; for a clergymen had better be called a black a good measure) the far larger slug by his enemies, than a toper by success which has attended such his friends. At the late splendid Con- institutions in America than in servative dinner in Devonshire, many England. In other lands, those excellent clergymen and laymen were present; admirable speeches were made who drink these liquid poisons, upon the occasion ; religion and its in- for the most part, do so to gratify stitutions were zealously defended; the their own depraved appetite ; they eloquence of the Aclands, and other esteemed and able men of the county, might abstain, if they pleased, demolished Popery, dissent, and revolu- from drinking, or encouraging tionism; the Bishop and the Clergy others to drink, without giving lost none of their honours; but alas! offence or exciting attention. Not all these stirring proceedings were ap
so in England. A gentleman canpended to
not, according to usage, dine at a “ With a jolly full bottle let each man
coffee-house or hotel, without orbe armed; We must be good subjects when our
dering wine, " for the good of the hearts are thus warmed;
house,” even though he may disHere's a health to Old England, the like it, or refrain from it as consi.
Queen and the Church,” &c. dering it injurious. A workman If a jolly full bottle will really thus does not consider himself handpromote loyalty and religion, the friends somely used in a gentleman's of " the Queen and the Church,” have house, if he has not money given a mighty easy and pleasant remedy in their hands for the sins and woes of the to him to purchase intoxicating nation; and they would do well to liquor, during, or at the conclusion send the Socialists and Chartists a few of, his job. But among the trades bottles, instead of clergymen and police: drinking usages are reduced to a of the stewards who make the arrange- regular system; and all persons ments, discern the impropriety of this connected with them must pay in favourite accompaniment; and that their turn, whether they drink or none of the speakers, lay or reverend, not. Mr. Dunlop, in addition to object to it? It were a noble occasion for a faithful and well-advised man, to
the convivial laws in use at visits, tell the assembly, after this “jolly” marriages, courtship, births, bapsong had been "rapturously applauded,” tisms, deaths, funerals, bargain in what light the Bible represents the and sale, holidays, and other occathe Church ; and the worse than fallacy of supporting it merely upon principles sions of business and domestic of" full-bottle" Conservatism.
life, has described the peculiar festal customs of ninety-eight when others furnish a regale of trades and occupations in the strong drink, if he do not take three kingdoms : including their his share he submits to a sacrifice; footings, fines, entries, pay-night for he has nothing given him practices, allowance pots, way. in place of it; so that he pays geese, remuneration pints, mug. in his turn without being benefited ging bribes, drink penalties, and in his turn; a very mortifying other usages, occurring statedly state of things; and which holds on numerous occasions ; the whole out a strong temptation to a youth detailing two hundred and ninety- to follow the usages which he seven different usages. The la. finds established
his com. bour, perseverance, and expense panions. of the author, in collecting this Mr. Dunlop has been zealmass of appalling facts, must have ously labouring in the establishbeen very great ; and his objectment of Temperance Societies in making them known is to di- ever since the year 1829; and rect the attention of Temperance his labours have been a blessing to Societies, and of religious and be- the nation and the world. He nevolent persons, to the necessity was the first founder of a Tem. of systematically opposing these de- perance Society in Scotland ; and moralising usages; without doing his notice of Scottish drinkingwhich they will be foiled in their usages was published some years efforts by a secret power often ago; but the account of English more dangerous than even the usages is new; and for this readepraved passion of the indivi- son, and the more direct adaptadual to be reclaimed. It is laid tion of this portion of the work down as a general maxim in fac- to our own national locality, we tories, work-shops, barns, fields, shall confine our attention chiefly ships, and other places of popular to it. The Irish portion also is occupancy, that inebriating drinks, new; but we will keep chiefly to not used to intoxication, are po. faults nearer home; though the sitively beneficial, or at worst evils described act and re-act harmless ministers to pleasurable upon all the three kingdoms, sensation ; and every contrivance throughout their numerous rami. is made use of to make an occa- fications; and many of the customs sion for demanding them.
are common to all.
The following is Mr. Dunlop's “A friend; good drink; or being dry; account of the serious obstacle Or lest we should be by and bye; Or any other reason why.”
which these drinking-usages in
terpose in the way of Tempera Now, as a person exposed to the Societies. We ought, however, spells described by Mr. Dunlop, to remark, that his allusions to the must contribute his contingent of habits of the educated classes of money for the customary con- society are not always consonant viviality, whether he partakes of to fact. Some persons in the it or not; being coerced by exac- station of gentlemen doubtless tions, to resist which is to render drink to excess; and many take himself the butt of scorn and ill- a larger portion of wine than is usage, perhaps to the extent of necessary for health-even if any being forced to quit his occupa- be ; but intoxication, so common tion if he refuse the usual gar. among the working classes, is not nishings; it requires some strength usual among English gentlemen ; of character, and would be thought and as for English ladies, "drink. very uncivil for him, not to par-' ing wine in the forenoon in complia. take of his own treat. So also ment, whether they really require