Imágenes de páginas
PDF
EPUB

engaging; a discretion that always charms; and as Mrs. Benlow loves, and miss Chawcer not only loves, but studys to please, there is nothing like them in the territorys of friendship, within this lower hemisphere (a).

Elife Janfon is a French lady, the daugh-Jf^se**' ter of an illustrious family in Franche Comte.^""/9"She was born with an understanding the most lively, fruitful, and comprehensive, and had the best education that her country affords bestowed on her. This enables her to talk well upon many subjects, and makes her happily become every thing she fays and dbes. She has a head well turned for romance, and thinks Calprenede (b) a valuable writer. She told me there were more good lessons in D'urfe (c) than in St. Thomas

Aquinas,

(a) As Mr. Hatchett is still living, and never heared what became of his niece from the day she left him, in the year 1737, I imagine, that, orthodox as he is, sworn against her, and tho, if I am rightly informed, he has made the reverend Mr. Fen, (his chaplain) his heir; yet, he would be glad to know, that she is now more happy, than even he could have made her in this world. That holy Unitarian religion, which procured her his indignation, has, by the band of providence, raised up to her as powerful a friend.

(b) Gentihomme de Perigord, the author of Cleopatra, Cassandra, Sylvandre, and the first part of Pbaramond.

(c) Honore D'urfe marquis of Valromey, and author of that fine romance, called AJlrta. He dyed the

E nth

Aquinas, and the master of the sentences. Such readings have given her an entertaining imagination, and improved a fancy naturally fine. If she fees an old post in a castle, ruin, or hall, me can turn it into an enchanted knight, and give his fine history with a matchless invention. There is an ancient Rocovian minister in Mrs. Benlows house, whom this lady keeps to read the reformed liturgy of the church of England to her family night and morning (a), and this

gentle

nth of Feb. 1567. The famousbishop of Avranches, who writ so many learned books, and died Jan. 26, 1721, etant age de 91. Ans, was so delighted with Ajlrea, that by often reading the happy adventures of the shepherds and shepherdesses on the banks of the river Linion, his fancy was raised to write Diana de Cajiro. And before that, he had translated from the Greek into Latin, the Amours of Daphnis and Chloe. The last was not published.

(a) By the reformed liturgy of the church of England I mean, the liturgy reduced nearer to the primitiveJlandard by Mr. Whjlon. The prayers are altered only in such places as are jhockingly Athanafian; and the litany

in the beginning only, to this christian form O God

our heavenly Father, the creator and preserver of all

things, have mercy upon us miserable sinners. By

the direction and guidance of the holy spirit the comforter, have mercy upon us miserable sinners. Remember not, 6 Lord, etc Spare thy people whom

thou jhast redeemed with thy Son's mofi precious blood, etc.

Thus does this primitive liturgy run, agreeable to the New Tejiament, contrary to the religion of Atbanaftus;

whose gentleman miss Janson has transformed, in a. romance Ihe hath written, into another Adamas, the good Druid in Afire a. Every character that hath appeared at Hali-Jarm, since her time, she has brought into her book, under romantic names, and described them and their transactions, with great exactness and a fine fancy, as people of the fabulous times. Her great benefactress especially, Mrs. Benlow with whom she lives, she has celebrated in a just and beautiful way, under the name of Florijbella the Good. The ro

whosc religion is of no more obligation upon us than the religion of John Pig; which is written upon a high stone pillar by the way fide near the borders of Scotland. And if this chrijiian liturgy was received into our churches, there need be no more talk of what particulars we are to reform in; no more disputes between free and candid disquisitions and their oppofers; the bishop of Clogher and his enemys. All would be well: and thousands of banijhed christians from our churches, by the antichristianity of Athanasius, would return to them, and attend the public worship. I am one of them. But as this will not be this century, we must continue to live in a state of segregation. — The great and good old Whiston, author of this primitive liturgy, was born Dec. 9, 1667 ■ - and dyed Aug. 22. 1752. aged 85. He entred in Clare Hall, Cambridge. He succeeded Sir Isaac Newton, as mathematical professor in the university, A. D. 1701, by the recommendation of Sir Isaac, who then resigned. Some years before his death, he became a member of Dr. Foster's baptist meeting. He outlived his cruellest enemy, old Ashton, late master of Jesus College, Cambridge.

E 2 mance mance is entitled, The hi/lory of Florijbella the Good, Queen of the Northern hills. This thing may appear one day, when the actors in those sheets are all layed low.

One would hardly think. such a head had much care about a right and a wrong in a religion: that it would ever think of quitting a country, a family, opulence and admiration, for despised truth, obscurity, and bad fortune. This was however the case of miss Jan/on, and her behaviour proves that, the brightest imagination is consistent with solid thinking: that the finest fancy but perfectionats. found reason. We owe more than we think we do to imagination. This made Fontenelle fay of Malbranche, who censured this faculty, that the philosopher had a strong and lively fancy that assisted him ungrateful as he was, without his knowledge, and adorned his reason without seeming to appear.

The fancy of Elife does indeed appear upon all occasions, but then, she has ever kept it the servant of reason, and^made its principal business be, to light heruiialprstanding on, in the investigation of truth. She had some how or other got a little glimpse* of the cheat in the holy Roman catholic religion she was carefully brought up in by her zealous parents, and having noticed that several religious follies were covered under the incom

prehenprehensibleness of supreme wisdom, she thought it her duty to inquire into these matters, and be cautious of doing wrong, in her thoughts, to the oppressed party, which had already the powers of the world (where ihe then was), and the current of opinion, against it.

To this purpose, when she went up so Paris with her mother, she collected as m|ny books in defence of the religion of P^ptestants, and against the corruptions of l£ome, as she could find in that city, and amidst all the gayetys of her life, set apart some hours of her time every day for reading the ple^j*^ ings against the Romish faith. She began with Pao/i Sarpi, and was quite charmed with that glorious work. She had before read the two jesuits {a), and as they told

her

(a) The two jesuits who writ against Father Paul are Pallavicini Siforza, who was made a cardinal by Alexander the 7th en 1657 j and Henricus Scipio of Messina.

Pallavicini's history of the council of Trent is an elegant apology for the vices of the court of Rome. The cardinal attempts to prove that, what served the church in its infancy, will not do now for the support of the holy monarch, but it requires stronger food, and motives that prevail more on the appetites and interests of frail men. It is grown older and wiser, and must have the emoluments of the datary, its privileges, indulgencysr dispensations, exemptions, pluralitys, and non-residencys j all that greatness and power, which the factious

E 3 ar4

« AnteriorContinuar »