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I returned again to the spot of my birth; I strove to be happy, I strove to smile,
fraught, There were still some hearts that were not It bore not within it the peace I sought.
estranged; But, except their affections, all things were
I fled away into solitude, changed !
I hoped to find quiet by mountain and
wood; There were voices beloved, but the tremu- But, alas! when the spirit would use its lous tone
wings, Told of the years that had over them gone; And mingle with grand and glorious things, There were brows that, scarce touched by 'Tis fetter'd by clay to its mortal sphere : Time's darkening wing,
-Rest there was none for my bosom here. Looked like the lingering flowers of spring; There were smiles—but they only shone on
I sat me down 'neath the midnight sky, decay,
The bright stars sparkled like gems on Like the fading light on the dying day.
Before me lay the mighty deep, There were heads with whose sunny clus- Still murmuring on in its peaceless sleeptering hair
And I thought, as I looked on its heaving Was mingled the early snow of care ;
breast, There were eyes but where was their once “There is indeed no place of rest !"
bright hue? A mist of tears had come over their blue : But there came a still small voice through Oh! I brook'd not to look on such altered the gloomthings,
“ Thing of the dust! return thee home: And I stayed not there my wanderings.
Is it thine to repine at the will of Him
Before whom yon glorious stars are dim? I went to fair cities, and in the crowd Pray that thy sins may be forgiven; I mingled awhile with the gay and the proud; Hope for a resting-place in heaven.”
MEMOIR OF THE RIGHT REVEREND REGINALD HEBER, LATE LORD
BISHOP OF CALCUTTA.
(With a Portrait.) REGINALD HEBER, the second son of nerves was such, that he died shortly the Rev. Reginald Heber, Master of afterwards. Arts of Brazennose College, Oxford, To relieve his mind under this loss, was born at Malpas, April 21, 1783. Mr. Heber accepted an offer to acThe rudiments of his education he company Mr. Thornton in tour received under the parental roof, from through Germany, Russia, and the whence he was removed at an early Crimea. Of the value of his journal age to the grammar school of Whit- some idea may be formed, from sevechurch, in Shropshire, and next, to a ral passages which the late Dr. Clarke private seminary near the metropolis, was permitted to extract for the illuskept by Dr. Bristowe. At the age of tration of his travels. sixteen, he was entered a student of While abroad, Mr. Heber was Brazennose College, and the year fol- unanimously chosen fellow of All lowing gained the chancellor's prize Souls' College ; and upon his return, for his “ Carmen Seculare,” an ele- he gained another academical prize gant Latin poem on the commence for an essay in prose, on “ The Sense ment of the new century. In 1803 of Honor.” Soon after this, Mr. he distinguished himself by his exqui- Heber relinquished his fellowship, on site English poem, entitled, “ Pales- being presented to the family rectory tine," which obtained the gold medal of Hodnet, in Shropshire, and marryand was recited with great applause ing the daughter of Dr. Shipley, dean in the theatre. On that occasion the of St. Asaph. venerable father of the young poet In 1808 he took the degree of maswas present, and the effect upon his ter of arts as a Grand Compounder,
and the next year appeared his poem, distinction, and never was filled but by entitled, “ Europe, or Lines on the men of preeminent talents. The propresent War," a piece which, though posal was too flattering to be rejected; not professedly a satire, exhibits in but within a few months after his apsome parts much of the Juvenalian pointment to this place, another of a character on the vices and follies of higher and very different description the age. About the same time came was offered him, which put his mind out a quarto edition of the “Pales- in a painful state of suspense, whether tine ; with a Fragment on the Pas- he could prudently accept, or conscisage of the Red Sea ;" written in the entiously refuse it. highest style of descriptive poetry. At the close of the above year, the Four years afterwards, the author melancholy intelligence reached Engprinted a small volume of “ Original land of the sudden death of that exPoems and Translations,” which, for cellent man, Dr. Middleton, the first vigor of conception, beauty of image- protestant bishop in British India. ry, and harmony of versification, may The Society for Promoting Christian vie with some of the finest produc- Knowledge, who were the principal tions in our language.
means of procuring, what had long In 1815 Mr. Heber preached the been wanting, the establishment of an Bampton Lecture before the universi- episcopate in the East, immediately ty of Oxford, on which occasion he assembled upon this occasion, and, took for his subject, “ The Personali- after paying proper respect to the ty and Office of the Christian Com- memory of the deceased prelate, beforter.” The course was well at- gan to look out for a person qualified tended, and the preacher gained great in every respect to be his successor. credit, by the manner in which he They were not long in consultation, discharged this important duty. Yet, but with one heart and one voice when the discourses, pursuant to the the venerable body fixed upon Mr. will of the founder of the lecture, Heber as the man in whom were comappeared from the press, some of the bined all the requisites that could be positions advanced therein were called wished, for the arduous situation. in question by the editor of the Bri “ Here,” to use the language of a tish Critic, in such a manner, that the great writer on a similar occasion,“were author, though little disposed to con- to be found diligence, patience, activity, troversy, felt himself under the ne- candor, and integrity; here was relicessity of replying to the anonymous gion without formality, liberality withreviewer, in « A letter addressed to out ostentation, seriousness without the Head of a College.” The next moroseness, and cheerfulness without publication of Mr. Heber was an ad- levity : here was gentleness to others, mirable sermon, preached by him in and self severity: here was useful the cathedral of Chester, and printed learning, and a love of those who lorat the desire of Dr. Law, then bishop ed and pursued it: here was a contempt of that diocese, and now of Bath and and dislike for detracting sycophants Wells.
The last literary performance and fawning parasites : here was affaof Mr. Heber was, a Memoir of the bility to inferiors : here were other Life and Writings of the eloquent and bright virtues and endearing accomeminently pious prelate, Jeremy Tay- plishments which need not be recountlor, prefixed to a uniform edition of ed; for there is already reason to his works.
fear that justice has not been done to In the spring of 1822 the preach- the dignity of the subject.” ership of Lincoln's Inn became va The Society having come to a resocant, when the whole bench of that lution upon this important concern, honorable society concurred in solicit- immediately communicated it in the ing Mr. Heber to accept the situation; handsomest terms to Mr. Heher, who which had always been an object of was much affected by the application.
Ambition and emolument were here as superseded every other tie, whether out of the question; for, as he was of parochial or social relation. The already at perfect ease in his circum- matter then underwent a further constances, and happy in his connexions, sideration ; counsel was held upon it; with fair prospects of higher advance- and his scruples being removed, Mr. ment in the church, if he should ever Heber consented to take upon him the think of seeking it, the present offer, momentous charge. flattering as it might be, was A single glance at the map of Hinwhich, in a worldly point of view, dostan must convince any one of the inahad more to repel than to court desire. bility of an individual to superintend Young men, ardent for fame, or needy all the churches scattered over such characters anxious to secure an inde- an extent of territory ; and those too, pendence, might be, and often are, in many parts, separated widely from ready enough to encounter the perils each other by tracts of country danof the sea, and the dangers of an un- gerous to travel over. healthy climate, in order to gain hon Dr. Middleton, the first bishop, was or and wealth. The motives by a man of strong constitution and powwhich such persons are actuated take erful energies, yet even he fell under from them the merit of making any the weight of the burden, declaring sacrifice for the sake of knowledge, with his last breath, that whoever religion, humanity, or conscience. On came out to India with the same genethe contrary, adventurers like these ral commission would experience a lose nothing in any case; for whether similar fate. Notwithstanding this, successful or not, they have their the British government continued the meet reward, -perishable riches and narrow plan which had been originally contempt if they prosper ; and an un- adopted, and Mr. Heber, with the lamented end, if they fall by a calen- melancholy example and gloomy preture or an apoplexy.
sage before him, received consecration Mr. Heber could not be classed at Lambeth, May 14th, 1823. with such as these ; for however Previous to his departure from highly he might estimate the episco- England in the month of June, the pal station, it was not the title, but university of Oxford conferred upon the office, which he contemplated. A him the degree of doctor in divinity, mitre in his eyes was not so splendid by diploma, which is the highest mark an object, as to render him indifferent of distinction in the power of that to the obligations which it imposed learned body to bestow. upon the wearer. The
On the 11th of October the bishop held out to him for his acceptance, arrived at Calcutta, where he set himwas of a very peculiar kind, and ap- self diligently to the discharge of his peared more like a crown of thorns, pastoral office. and an emblem of martyrdom, than of On the 27th of May, 1824, he enhonorable distinction and enjoyment. tered upon his first visitation, compris
On being apprised of the recom- ing northern India, Bombay, and the mendation of the Society for Pro- island of Ceylon. Having completed moting Christian Knowledge, and the this circuit, he returned to Calcutta, cheerful acquiescence of the East In- and at the beginning of 1826 made dia Company and the Government, he preparations for his visitation to Mahesitated, took time to deliberate, and dras. then declined the appointment. This On the 28th of March, the bishop, was not the effect of timidity, for on attended by his chaplain and several his own account, he had no fear; but missionaries of the district, paid a viwhen he reflected upon the situation sit of ceremony to the rajah of Tanof his beloved partner and only child, jore, under the customary honors; and he very naturally doubted whether the next day his highness returned the the present invitation was such a call compliment, by waiting on the bishop.
The two following days were taken Meetings were held at the several up by Bishop Heber in visiting and in- presidencies, to consider of the best specting the mission schools and pre- mode of paying a tribute of respect to mises. The number of children in the memory of the lamented prelate. these seminaries, English and Tamu- From the excellent speeches which lian, amounted to two hundred and were delivered on these occasions, we seventy-five boys and girls. He shall select that of Sir Charles Grey, heard them read in both languages, the chief justice at Calcutta, as exhiand expressed himself highly gratified biting an admirable portraiture of the at the progress which had been made good bishop, in his early days. by the scholars.
“ It is, (said the learned judge,) On the 31st, the bishop left Tan- with real agitation and embarrassment, jore amidst the blessings of the peo- that I find it my duty to mark out the ple, and proceeded to Trichinopoly, grounds on which this meeting appears where he arrived apparently in good to me to have been called for. Ashealth and spirits, on Saturday, the 1st suredly, it is not that there is any difof April. The next day he preached ficulty in finding those grounds ; or to a large audience, and the same that I have any apprehension that you evening confirmed forty young persons, will not attend to a statement of them to whom he also delivered a suitable with willingness and indulgence. But address. On the following morning, this is a very public occasion, and my at six o'clock, he went to the Fort feelings are not entirely of a public Church, where he confirmed eleven nature. Deep as my sense is of the native Christians.
loss which the community has sustainWhen he reached home, he went to ed, yet, do what I will, the sensation visit Mr. Robinson, his chaplain, who which I find uppermost in my heart, was indisposed ; after which he re- is my own private sorrow, for one who paired to dress, and bathe. Having was my friend in early life. remained in the bath longer than usu “ It is just four-and-twenty years, al, his servant entered the apartment, this month, since I first became acand found his master lying senseless quainted with him at the university, in the water. Assistance was imme- of which he was, beyond all question diately procured, but every attempt to or comparison, the most distinguished restore animation proved unsuccessful. student of his time. The name of
Upon examination, the vessels of Reginald Heber was in every mouth; the head were found much distended his society was courted by young and with blood, whence it was the opinion old; he lived in an atmosphere of favor, of the medical gentlemen, that the admiration, and regard, from which I death of the bishop was occasioned have never known any one but himby apoplexy. He had exhibit- self, who would not have derived, and ed unusual symptoms of heaviness for life, an unsalutary influence. Towhen called from his repose, and ward the close of his academical cawhile undressing for the bath ; which reer, he crowned his previous honors disposition was probably induced by by the production of his · Palestine ;' previous exertion, and rendered fatal of which single work, the fancy, the by a sudden immersion into cold wa- elegance, and the grace, have secured ter. The corpse was deposited, with him a place in the list of those who every demonstration of respect and bear the proud title of English poets. sorrow, on the north side of the altar This, according to usage, was recited of St. John's church, Trichinopoly. in public; and when that scene of his
The awful event was no sooner early triumph comes upon my memade known at the different seats of mory,—that elevated rostrum from government, than it produced a gene- which he looked upon friendly and ral gloom, and every one, high and low, admiring faces-that decorated theafelt the loss as a personal concern. tre,-those grave forms of ecclesiasti
cal dignitaries, mingling with a resplen- thor were better adapted; hardly any dent throng of rank and beauty,– which could have given the world those antique 'mansions of learning, more delight, himself more of glory. those venerable groves, those refresh- I know the interest which he took in ing streams, and shaded walks,-the it. But he had now entered into the vision is broken by another, in which service of the church ; and finding the youthful and presiding genius of that it interfered with his graver duthe former scene is beheld lying in his ties, he turned from his fascinating purdistant grave, amongst the sands of suit, and condemned to temporary obSouthern India !-Believe me, the livion, a work, which I trust may yet contrast is striking, and the recollec- be given to the public. tions are most painful !
“I mention this chiefly for the “But you are not here to listen to design of showing how steady was the details of private life. If I touch purpose, how serious the views, with upon one or two other points, it will which he entered on his calling. I be for the purpose only of illustrating am aware that there were inducements some features of his character. He to it, which some minds will be dispassed some time in foreign avel, posed to regard as the only probable before he entered on the duties of his ones ; but I look upon it, myself, to profession. The whole continent had have been with him a sacrifice of no not yet been re-opened to Englishmen common sort. His early celebrity by the swords of the noble Lord had given him incalculable advantages; (Combermere) who is near me, and and every path of literature his companions in arms; but in the east- open to him ; every road to the ern part of it the bishop found a field, temple of fame, every honor which the more interesting, on account of its his country could afford, was in a having been seldom trodden by our coun clear prospect before him, when he trymen : he kept a valuable journal of turned to the humble duties of a his observations; and when you consi- country church, and buried in his der his youth, the applause he had alrea- heart those talents which would have dy received, and how tempting, in the ministered so largely to worldly vanimorning of life, are the gratifications ty, that they might spring up in a of literary success, you will consider more precious harvest.
He passed it as a mark of the retiring and ingenu- many years in this situation, in the ous modesty of his character, that he enjoyment of as much happiness as preferred to let the substance of his the condition of humanity is perhaps work appear in the humble form of capable of; happy in the choice of his notes to the volumes of another. companion, the love of his friends,
“ There is another circumstance the fond admiration of his family,– which I can add, and which is not so happy in the discharge of his great generally known : this journey, and the duties, and the tranquillity of a satisaspect of those vast regions, stimulating fied conscience. a mind which was stored with classical “ It was not, however, from this learning, had suggested to bim a plan station that he was called to India. of collecting, arranging, and illustrat- By the voice, I am proud to say it, of ing, all of ancient and of modern lite- a part of that profession to which rature, which could unfold the history, I have the honor to belong, he had and throw light on the present state of been invited to an office, which few Scythia—that region of mystery and have held for any length of time fable—that source,
from whence, without further advancement. His eleven times in the history of man, friends thought it, at that time, no the living clouds of war have been presumption to hope that ere long he breathed over all the nations of the might wear the mitre at home. But south. I can hardly conceive any it would not have been like himself to work for which the talents of the au- chaffer for preferment; he freely and
10 ATHENEUM, vol. 1, 3d series.