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a very unreasonable credulity in others to believe it. All the while I was with him, after he had slept out the disorders of the fit he was in the first night, he was not only without ravings, but had a clearness in his thoughts, in his memory, in his reflections on things and persons, far beyond what I ever saw in a person so low in his strength. He was not able to hold out long in a discourse, for his spirits failed; but once for half an hour, and often for a quarter of an hour, after he awaked, he had a vivacity in his discourfe that was extraordinary, and in all things like himself. He called often for his children, his son (afterwards earl of Rochester), and his three daughters, and spake to them with a sense and feeling chat cannot be expressed in writing. He called me once to look on them all, and said, " See how “ good God has been to me, in giving me so many " blessings, and I have carried myself to him like “ an ungracious and unthankful dog." He once talked a great deal to me of public affairs, and of many persons and things, with the same clearness of thought and expresfion that he had ever done before : so that by no sign but his weakness of body, and giving over discourse so soon, could I perceive a difference between what his parts formerly were and what they were then.
And that, wherein the presence of his mind appeared moft, was in the total change of an ill habit
grown so much upon him, that he could hardly govern himself, when he was any ways heated, three minutes without falling into it: I mean swearing. He had acknowledged to me, the former winter, that he abhorred it as a base and indecent thing, and had set himself much to break it off; but he confeffed, that he was so overpowered by that ill custom, that he could not speak with any warmth without repeated oaths, which, upon any sort of provocation, came almost naturally from him ; but in his last remorses, this did fo fenfibly affect him, that, by a resolute and constant watchfulness, the habit of it was perfectly mastered.; fo that, upon the returns of pain, which were very severe and frequent upon him the last day I was with him, or upon such displeasures as people fick or in pain are apt to take on a sudden at those about them, on all these occafions he never swore an oath all the while I was there,
Once he was offended with the delay of one he thought made not hafte enough with somewhat he called for, and said, in a little heat, “ that damned “ fellow :” soon after I told him, I was glad to find his style fo reformed, and that he had so entirely overcome that ill habit of swearing: only that word of calling any damned, which had returned upon him, was not decent. His answer was :
66 Oh ! “ that language of friends, which was so familiar
" to me, hangs yet about me: sure none has deso served more to be damned than I have done." And, after he had humbly asked God pardon for it, he desired me to call the person to him, that he might ask him forgiveness : but I told him that was needless; for he had said it of one that did not hear it, and so could not be offended by it.
In this disposition of mind did he continue all the while I was with him, four days together: he was then brought so low, that all hopes of recovery were gone. Much purulent matter came from him with his urine; which he passed always with some pain, but one day with inexpressible torment: yet he bore it decently, without breaking out into repinings or impatient complaints. He imagined he had a stone in his passage ; but, it being searched, none was found. The whole substance of his body was drained by the ulcer, and nothing was left but skin and bone; and, by lying much on his back, the
parts there began to mortify: but he had been formerly so low, that he seemed as much past all hopes of life as now: which made him one morning, after a full and sweet night's reft, procured by laudanum given him without his knowledge, to fancy it was an effort of nature, and to begin to entertain some hopes of recovery : for he said, he felt himself perfectly well, and that he had nothing ailing him but an extreme weakness, which might go off in
time: and then he entertained me with the scheme he had laid down for the rest of his life ; how retired, how strict, and how studious, he intended to be : but this was soon over; for he quickly felt that it was only the effect of a good sleep, and that he was still in a very desperate state.
I thought to have left him on Friday; but, not without some passion, he desired me to stay that day. There appeared no symptom of pretent death; and a worthy physician, then with him, told me, that, though he was so low that an accident might carry him away on a sudden, yet, without that, he thought he might live yet some weeks. So, on Saturday, at four o'clock in the morning, I left him, being the 24th of July. But I durft not take leave of him; for he had expressed so great an unwillingness to part with me the day before, that, if I had not presently yielded to one day's stay, it was like to have given him fome trouble, therefore I thought it better to leave him without any formality. Some hours after he asked for me ; and, when it was told him I was gone, he seemed to be troubled, and said, “ Has my friend left me ? Then I shall die hortly." After that he spake but once or twice till he died : he lay much filent: once they heard him praying very devoutly. And, on Monday about two of the clock in the morning, he died without any convulfion, or so much as a groan.
THUS he lived, and thus he died in the three
and thirtieth year of his age. Nature had fitted him for great things, and his knowledge and observation qualified him to have been one of the most extraordinary men, not only of his nation, but of the age he lived in; and I do verily believe, that, if God had thought fit to have continued him longer in the world, he had been the wonder and delight of all that knew him: but the infinite wise God knew better what was fit for him, and what the
age deserved : for men, who have so cast off all sense of God and religion, deserve not to signal a blefing as the example and conviction which the rest of his life might have given them. And I am apt to think that the Divine Goodness took pity on him; and, feeing the fincerity of his repentance, would try and venture him no more in circumstances of temptation, perhaps too hard for human frailty. Now he is at rest; and, I am very confident, enjoys the fruits of his late, but fincere, repentance. But such as live, and still go on in their fins and impieties, and will not be awakened, neither by this nor the other alarms that are about their ears, are, it seems, given up by God to a judicial hardness and impenitency.