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Calls off from heavenly truth this reasoning me,
Too weak to choose, yet choosing still in haste,
Around me, lo, the thinking, thoughtless crew,
“ Almighty Power, by whose most wise command, Helpless, forlorn, uncertain here I stand; Take this faint glimmering of thyself away, Or break into my soul with perfect day!" This said, expanded lay the sacred text, The balm, the light, the guide of souls perplex’d: Thus the benighted traveller that strays Through doubtful paths, enjoys the morning rays; The nightly mist, and thick descending dew, Parting, unfold the fields, and vaulted blue. “O Truth divine! enlighten'd by thy ray, I grope and guess no more, but see my way; Thou clear'dst the secret of my high descent, And told me what those mystic tokens meant; Marks of my birth, which I had worn in vain, Too hard for worldly sages to explain. Zeno's were vain, vain Epicurus' schemes, Their systems false, delusive were their dreams;
Unskill'd my two-fold nature to divide,
ELIZABETH ROWE. 1674–1737. ELIZABETH ROWE, distinguished for her piety, literature, and poetical talents, was the daughter of Mr. Walter Singer, a clergyman of Ilchester. She early evinced a very decided taste for reading and poetry, and in her twenty-second year she published a volume of “ Poems on Several Occasions, by Philomela.” In 1710 she married Mr. Thomas Rowe, a gentleman of considerable literary attainments, who was some years her junior, but who, to her great grief, died of consumption but a few years after their marriage, at the early age of twenty-eight. After his death she retired to Frome, in the neighborhood of which she possessed a paternal estate, and there composed her once celebrated work, “ Letters from the Dead to the Living." She died in 1737,
« The poems of Mrs. Rowe,” says Southey, “ show much spirit and cultivation, and are chiefly characterized by their devotion. They are at times a little more enthusiastic than is allowable even for poetry, and are sometimes distorted by metaphysics, but generally their beauties prevail over their faults."
Ye virgin minds above,
And mighty force of love:
Your love to human kind,
My absent Lord to find.
And climb'd the hills around;
Among the swains have found.
By every stream and rock;
I traced the city's noisy streets, de
And told my cares aloud ;
Among the thoughtless crowd.
Disclosed the heavenly light.d e
I feast my ravish'd eyes,
His sacred footsteps trace,
And bless the happy place.
Or where perpetual snow
To find my Lord, I'd go.
Nor unfrequented shore,
To his embrace I'd fly,
Would be content to die.
HENRY GROVE. 1683—1738. HENRY GROVE, a “dissenting” clergyman of great literature and piety, was born at Taunton, Somersetshire, 1683. He was early impressed by his parents with an ardent love for religion and morality, and at school and at the academy' he acquired a taste for the elegant authors of Greece and Rome, which he cultivated through life with unwearied fondness and assiduity, and which gave uncommon grace and beauty to his style. At the age of twentytwo he entered the ministry, for which he was eminently qualified by his piety and learning; and he became a very popular preacher. On the decease of Mr. Warren, the preceptor of the academy at Taunton, Mr. Grove was elected to fill his place, and his first publication was an essay drawn up for the use of his pupils, entitled, “ The Regulation of Diversions," designed to call off the attention of youth from the too eager pursuit of pleasure, and to infuse into them a thirst for the acquisition of knowledge and virtue. His
1 "Dissenters" had not the privilege of Oxford and Cambridge Universities
pray for a taste which should stand me in stead under every variety of circumstances, and be a source of happiness and cheerfulness to me through life, and a shield against its Ills, however things might go amiss, and the world frown upon me, it would be A TASTE FOR READING. I speak of it only as a worldly advantage, and not in the slightest degree as superseding or derogating from the higher office and surer and stronger panoply of religious principles-but as a taste, an instrument, and a mode of pleasurable gratification. Give a man this taste, and the mean of gratifying it, and you can hardly fail of making a happy man; unless, indeed, you put into his hands a most perverse selection of books. You place him in contact with the best society in every period of history-with the wisest, the wittiest with the tenderest, and the purest characters that have adorned humanity. You make him a denizen of all nations--a contemporary of all ages. The world has been created for him. It is hardly possible but the character should take a higher and better tone from the constant habit of associating in thought with a class of thinkers, to say the least of it, above the average of humanity." From Sir John Herschel's "Discourse on the Study of Natural Philosophy."
next writings for the public were contributions for the Spectator. Numbers 588, 601, 626, and 635 (the last number) are from his pen. He also published many treatises of a strictly religious character. Of these, “ A Discourse on Secret Prayer,” « The Evidence of our Saviour's Resurrection Considered," « Some Thoughts concerning the Proof of a Future State from Reason," and « Discourses on the Lord's Supper," and on “Saving Faith,' are best known.
«In all his writings, Mr. Grove, taking the Scripture solely for his guide, adhered to the result of his own inquiries; his mind was biased by no systems or creeds, and his theology, therefore, was purely practical, and, as far as the fallibility of men will allow in judging of the text, perfectly conforma. ble to the tenor of the Gospel.” 1 After living a life of great benevolence and practical piety, he died on the 27th of February, 1738, in the fifty-fifth year of his age. The following extracts from one of his letters to a friend, draw a true picture of his own character, in his directions for
THE TRUE ART OF ENJOYING LIFE. It will not be altogether out of character, if I write down a few reflections on the art of improving human life, so as to pass it in peace and tranquillity, and make it yield the noblest pleasures it is capable of affording us. The first rule, and in a manner comprehensive of all the rest, is always to consider human life in its connection, as a state of trial, with an everlasting existence. How does this single thought at once raise and sink the value of every thing under the sun? sink it as a part of our worldly portion ; raise it as a means and opportunity of promoting the glory of the great Author of all good, and the happiness, present and future, of our fellow-creatures as well as our own ?-In the next place, we are to lay down this for a certain maxim, and constantly attend to it, that our happiness must arise from our own temper and actions, not immedaitely from any external circumstances. These, at best, are only considerable, as they supply a larger field to the exercise of our virtue, and more leisure for the improvements and entertainments of the mind : whereas, the chief delights of a reasonable being must result from its own operations, and reflections upon them as consonant to its nature, and the order it holds in the universe. How do I feel myself within ? Am I in my natural state ? Do I put my faculties to their right use ?-To require less from others than is commonly done, in order to be pleased, and to be more studious to please them, not from a meanness of spirit, not from artful views, but from an unaffected benevolence, is another rule of greater importance than is easily imagined ; and more ef
1 Drake's Essays, vol. fil. p. 210.