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collection the image of her husband rushing out into the storm, and of a daughter therein lost, till she beheld that very husband kneeling tenderly by her bedside, and that very daughter smoothing the pillow on which her aching temples reclined. But she knew from the white steadfast countenances before her, that there had been tribulation and deliverance, and she looked on the beloved beings ministering by her bed, as more fearfully dear to ber from the unimagined danger from which she felt assured they had been rescued, by the arm of the Almighty.
30. They had all now power to weep, and power to pray. The Bible had been lying in its place ready for worshipand the father read aloud that chapter in which is narrated our Saviour's act of miraculous power, by which be saved Peter from the sea. Soon as the solemn thoughts awakened by that act of inercy, so similar to that which had rescued themselves from death, had subsided, and they had all risen up from prayer, they gathered themselves in gratitude round the little table which had stood so many hours spread--and exhausted nature was strengthened and restored by a frugal and simple meal partaken of in silent thankfulness. The whole story of the night was then calmly recited--and when the mother heard how the stripling had followed her sweet Ilannah into the storm, and borne her in his arms through a hundred drifted heaps--and then looked upon her in her pride, so young, so innocent, and so beautiful, she knew, That were the child indeed to become an orphan, there was one, who, if there was either trust in nature, or truth in religion, would guard and cherish her all the days of her life. It was not nine o'clock when the storm came down from Glen-Scrag upon the Black-Moss, and now in a pause of silence the clock struck twelve. Within these three hours, William and Hannah had seen the vicissitudes of trouble and joy, and felt that they were to live wholly for each other's sake. He now thought of his own Hannah Lee everinore moving about in his father's house, not as a servant, but as a daughter. Her heart swelled with joy when she heard her parents bless him by his name-and when be took her hand into his before them, and vowed before the Power who had that night saved them from the snow, that Hannah Lee should be his wedded wife-she wept in a transport of strange and insupportable happiness.
32. The young shepherd rose to bid them farewellMy father will think I am lost,” said he, with a grave smile," and my Hannah's mother knows what it is to fear for a child.” So nothing was said to detain him, and the family went with him to the door. The skies smiled as serenely as if a storm had never swept before the starsthe moon was sinking from her meridian, but in cloudless splendour--and the hollow of the hill was hushed as that of heaven. Danger there was none over the placid nightscene--the happy youth soon crossed the Black-Moss,
and arrived at his father's house in safety.
The Widow and her Son.
Honour and reverence ever more have reigned. 1. During my residence in the country, I used frequently to attend at the old village church. Its shadowy aisles, its mouldering monuments, its dark oak pannelling, ali reverend with the gloom of departed years, seemed to fit it for the haunt of solemn meditation. A Sunday, too, in the country, is so holy in its repose ; such a pensive quiet reigns over the face of nature, that every restless passion is, charmed down, and we feel all the natural religion of the soul gently springing up within us.
Sweet day, so pure, so calm, so bright,
The bridal of the earth and sky! 2. I do not pretend to be what is called a devout man; but there are feelings that visit me in a country church, amidst the beautiful serenity of nature, which I experience nowhere else ; and if not a more religious, I am certainly a better man on Sunday, than on any other day of the seven.
3. But in this church I felt myself continually thrown back upon the world, by the frigidity and pomp of the poor worms around me. The only being that seemed thoroughly to feel the humble and prostrate piety of a true Christian, was a poor decrepit old woman, bending under the weight of years and infirmities.
4. She bore the traces of something better than abject poverty. The lingerings of decent pride were visible in her appearance. Her dress, though humble in the extreme,
was sciupulously clean. Some trivial respect, too, had been awarded her, for she did not take her seat among the village poor, but sat alone on the steps of the altar.
5. She seemed to have survived all love, all friendship, all society; and to have nothing left her but the hopes of heaven. When I saw her feebly rising, and bending her aged form in prayer, habitually conning her prayerbook, which her palsied hand and failing eyes could not permit her to read, but which she evidently knew by heart--I felt that the faltering voice of that poor woman arose to heaven far above the responses of the clerk, the swell of the organ, or the chanting of the choir.
6. I am fond of loitering about country churches ; and this was so delightfully situated, that it frequently attracted me. It stood on a knoll, round which a small stream made a beautiful bend, and then wound its way through a long reach of soft and meadowy scenery. The church was surrounded by yew-trees, which seemed almost coeval with itself. Its tall gothic spire shot up lightly amongst them, with crows and rooks generally wheeling about it
. I was seated here one still sunny morning, watching two labourers who were digging a grave.
7. They had chosen one of the most remote and neglected corners of the churchyard, where, by the number of nameless graves around, it would appear that the unknown and friendless were buddled into the earth. I was told that the new-made grave was for the only son of a poor widow. While I was meditating on the distinctions of worldly rank, which extended thus down into the very dust, the tolling of the bell announced the approach of the funeral.
8. They were the obsequies of poverty, with which pride had nothing to do. A coffin of the plainest materials
, without pall or other covering, was borne by some of the villagers. The sexton walked before with an air of cold indifference. There were no mock mourners in the trappings of affected wo ; but there was one real mourner, who feebly tottered over the corpse. It was the aged mother of the deceased; the poor old woman whom I had seen seated on the steps of the altar. She was supported by an humble friend, who was endeavouring to comfort her. A few of the neighbouring poor had joined the train, and some children of the village were running hand in hand, nost
shouting with unthinking mirth, and sometimes pausing to gaze with childish curiosity on the grief of the mourner.
9. As the funeral train approached the grave, the parson issued out of the church-porch, arrayed in his surplice, with the prayerbook in his hand, and attended by the clerk, The service, however, was a mere act of charity. The deceased had been destitute, and the surviver was pennyless. It was shuffled through, therefore, in form, but coldly and unfeelingly. The wellfed priest scarcely moved ten steps from the church door ; his voice could scarcely be heard at the grave; and never did I hear the funeral'service, that subline and touching ceremony, turned into such a frigid mummery of words.
10. I approached the grave. The coffin was placed on the ground. On it were inscribed the name and age of the deceased—“George Somers, aged 26 years. mother had been assisted to kneel down at the head of it. Her withered hands were clasped as if in prayer ; but I could perceive, by a feeble rocking of the body, that she was gazing on the last relics of her son with the yearnings of a mother's heart.
11. The service being ended, preparations were made to deposite the coffin in the earth. There was that bustling stir that breaks so harshly on the feelings of grief and affection ; directions given in the cold tones of business ; the striking of spades into sand gravel, which, at the grave of those we love, is of all sounds the most withering. The bustle around seemed to awaken the mother from a wretched revery:
12. She raised her glazed eyes, and looked about with a faint wildness. As the men approached with cords to lower the coffin into the grave, she wrung her hands, and broke into an agony of grief. The poor woman who attended her, took her by the arm, and endeavoured to raise her from the earth, and to whisper something like consolation, “ Nay now-nay, nowdon't take it so sorely to beart.” could only sbake her head, and wring her hands, as one not to be comforted.
13. As they lowered the body into the earth, the cracking of the cords seemed to agonize her ; but when, on some accidental obstruction, there was a jolting of the coffin, all the tenderness of the mother burstoforth ; as if any harm
could come to him who was far beyond the reach of worldly suffering.
14. I could see no more.. My heart swelled into my throat; my eyes filled with tears ; I felt as if I were acting a barbarous part, in standing by and gazing idly on this scene of maternal anguish. I wandered to another part of the churchyard, where I remained until the funeral train had dispersed.
15. When I saw the mother slowly and painfully quitting the grave, leaving behind her the remains of all that was dear to her on earth, and returning to silence and destitution, my heart ached for her. What, thought I, are the distresses of the rich! They have friends to soothe ; pleasures to beguile; a world to divert and dissipate their griefs. What are the sorrows of the young! Their growing minds soon close above the wound-their green and ductile affec. tions soon twine around new objects. But the sorrows of the poor, who have no outward appearance to soothe--the sorrows of the aged, with whom life at best is but a wintry day, and who can look for no aftergrowth of joy--the sorrows of a widow, aged, solitary, destitute, mourning over an only son, the last solace of her years; these are the sorrows which make us feel the impotency of consolation.
From a Preceptor to his Pupils. 1. I am truly sensible of the important trust reposed in me, and cannot but feel a solicitude to discharge it with propriety: I will not say that the pecuniary emolument arising from it is by any means indifferent to me. No man would sacrifice his ease, and enter into an anxious employment, without a desire of those rewards which are allotted to industry. And it is equitable, that be who is willing to step forward, and render himself extensively useful to others, should derive such advantages from his exertions, as may render his old age easy and respected, or provide for the wants of a rising family. But I must declare, on the other hand, that the satisfaction arising from a consciousness of performing the duty incumbent on me, and rendering a service equivalent to the recompense, sweetens every labour, and gives additional value to the pecuniary compensation.
2. You are placed here for two purposes; the improvement of the understanding, and the formation of virtuous