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his path-his mother died after a fortnight's illness. That tender, loving, nervous mother, who had ventured forth so devotedly into the wide, wide world, to share the vicissitudes of her gifted son ! The tremor of the father, which would not allow him to look on his wife and son when they were leaving home for Paris, was a premonition. Well might that husband and father weep! The son he did receive back again ; but the wife he never saw more. What were Mozart's emotions in that wild, gay city of Paris, during the awful fortnight of his mother's illness terminating in death? These may be best ascertained from a letter which he wrote to a friend, whom he requested to break the sad intelligence to his father :
"Paris, July 3, 1778. “My dear Friend,-Sympathise with me on this the most wretched and melancholy day of my life. I write at two o'clock in the morning to inform you that my mother-my dearest mother-is no more ! God has called her to Himself. I saw clearly that nothing could save her, and resigned myself entirely to the will of God : He gave and He can take away. Picture to yourself the state of alarm, care, and anxiety in which I have been kept for the last fortnight. She died wiihout being conscious of anything; her life went out like a taper. Three days ago she confessed, received the sacrament and extreme unction; but since that time she had been constantly delirious and rambling, until this afternoon at twenty-one minutes after five, when she was seized with convulsions, and immediately lost all perception and feeling. I pressed her hand and spoke to her, but she neither saw me, heard me, nor seemed in the least sensible; and in this state she lay for five hours-namely, till twenty-one minutes past ten, when she departed, no one being present but myself, M. Haine, and the nurse.
“I cannot at present write you the whole particulars of the illness, but my belief is that she was to die—that it was the will of God. Let me now beg the friendly service of you to prepare my poor father by gentle degrees for the melancholy tidings. I wrote to him by the same post, but told him no more than that she was very ill, and I now await his answer, by which I shall be guided. May God support and strengthen him! Oh! my friend, through the especial grace of God I have been enabled to endure the whole with fortitude and resignation, and have long since been consoled under this great loss. In her extremity I prayed for two things—a blessed dying hour for my mother, and courage and strength for myself; and the gracious God heard my prayer and richly bestowed those blessings upon me. Pray, therefore, dear friend, support my father. Say what you can to him, in order that when he knows the worst he may not feel it too bitterly. I commend my sister also to you from the bottom of my heart. Call on both of them soon, but say no word of the death-only prepare them. You can do and say what you will ; but let me be so far at ease as to have no new misfortune to expect. Comfort my dear father and my dear sister, and pray send me a speedy answer. Adieu."
It is delightful to see the exceeding goodness of Mozart's heart as displayed on this trying occasion. By the same post he wrote a letter 10 his father, for he could not trust his friend absolutely ; and by his
own hand endeavoured to prepare his father for what was sure to be an overwhelming shock. He says :-"My dear mother is very ill ... They want to give me hope; but I have not much. I have been long already-for days and nights together-between hope and fear; but I have now entirely resigned myself to the will of God, and I hope that you and my dear sister will do the like. What are the means, then, to give us calm and peace, in a degree, if not absolutely? I am resigned, let the end be what it may, because I know that God, who, however mysteriously He may proceed to human eyes, ordains everything for the best, so wills it; and I am not easily persuaded out of the belief that neither physician nor any other man, neither misfortune nor accident, can either take or give life, but God alone.” See that brave youth, out of his own deep sorrow, trying to comfort and calm his aged father and trusting sister !
And what of that father, when he received this preparatory epistle ? Ah! the correspondence between facher and son shows what great-souled men those are who rise to eminence in music. With them music is no idle pastime or frivolous amusement; it is the language of the heart embellished and enriched by genius and culture. Leopold Mozart wrote, “My dear wife and son.” Poor fellow! He thought that wife was still living. He says, “I wish you all manner of happiness, and pray Almighty God to preserve you many years." He adds, “This is what lies most on my heart-to be separated from you, to be at such a distance." Poor man! chained to his place by an arduous and exacting profession, his wife and son yonder in Paris. Addressing his son, Leopold says, “We have so wept together as scarcely to be able to read your letter.” .... “Great and merciful God! Thy will be done ; but what am I to conclude from your letter ? Wby, she may be dead even now. ..." “I place confidence in your filial affection, that you have taken every earthly care of your excellent mother, and will do so, if she be spared to us. She was so proud of you-I know better than you— she lived so wholly for you. . ..." “Your sister intended writing in this letter, but tears gush into her eyes so fast that she cannot. . ..'' "She is gone,” adds the father passionately; “ you take too much pains to comfort me.” Before the letter was finished the friend came in, and after some preliminaries the inevitable truth came out. And this affectionate husband could not even attend the funeral of his loved wife!
Here let us leave the sorrowing family for awhile. The death of bis mother closed another chapter in the eventful life of Mozart. After this great change in the family he entered on a new era in his career.
H. MARSDEN. Hurst, December 1, 1875.
PREACHING FOR A CROWN. My recollections of my old neighbour Mr. Wm. Fletcher date from a very early period in my history. I don't remember the time when I did not know him. He was by trade a joiner and carpenter, and on Lord's-day was frequently engaged as a local preacher amongst the Wesleyan Methodists. When employed in his calling he was a man of few words, seldom interfered with others' business, and was looked upon as a man of undoubted piety. I well remember strange tales being told of him, and I also remember bearing strange language used by him when he occupied the pulpit. As a preacher and prayer-leader he was very energetic and physically demonstrative ; his matter was remarkable for originality, his style was racy and humorous, and he was usually if not invariably " well accepted "as a local preacher.
Mr. Fletcher's manner of arranging his sermons differed from that usually adopted. His system was to take up the principal points of the text as they were presented to his mind. Only on one occasion did he attempt to preach from a text divided into a certain number of heads, and this was by the request and according to the arrangement of a friend. The attempt was a failure! To use his own words, "I got on the first head and rode it all the way through the sermon."
Amongst many Dissenting denominations a small amount of money, called " horse-hire money,” was formerly, and indeed is now, paid to local preachers for travelling expenses. Fifty years ago the amount usually paid was from one shilling to two-and-sixpence. The subject of this reminiscence had on one occasion travelled some eight or nine miles and preached twice at a village a few miles south-west of Nottingham. After the services were over the stewards asked Mr. Fletcher how much they were indebted to him for expenses ? “A crown" was the answer. The stewards were surprised at the demand, and replied “That is more than we usually give.” “Well," replied Mr. Fletcher, “I mean to have nothing less, but I don't want it now." The stewards intimated that if they had to pay that amount they might as well pay it then as at any other time. Mr. Fletcher then said, “I don't want the crown' now, shall not while I live, but I mean to have one by-and-by.”
My old neighbour, when not “planned out,” worshipped at a small chapel to which I was taken when very young. The large elevated singing pews were certainly disproportionate to the size of the chapel; the occupants of the singing pews and the style of singing then practised were sources of great annoyance to Mr. Fletcher. Part-singing and fuguing in public worship he abhorred; some of the occupants of the singing pews had scarcely a moral character, and perhaps some of the instrumentalists had as little devotion about them as the clarionets and basoons that figured 90 prominently. Mr. Fletcher complained to and expostulated with his brother officials repeatedly on singing-pew matters, but was generally overruled. Onone Sabbath, however, his patience and forbearance gave way. A man of more than doubtful morals was making his way towards the singing pew carrying a crooked musical instrument called a " serpent”; this was too much for Mr. Fletcher to endure. Stepping to the end of the singing pew and preventing further progress, he said, “Stop, stop, my man, one devil at once is plenty."
Statements and remarks made by some persons are tolerated, and indeed well received, which if made by others would be considered highly reprehensible. I cannot account for the fact, but so it is. Of the former class was my old neighbour, who I doubt not has long ago received his “crown.”
OP ENING OF VERWY CHANCE AT BRE
OP ENING OF A NEW CHAPEL AT BREASTON,
DERBY CIRCUIT. SERVICES in connection with the dedication of the new chapel were held as under, when the following ministers preached :—Sunday, October 31, 1875, afternoon, Rev. J. Poxon ; evening, Rev. J. Stacey, D.D. Sunday, November 7th, afternoon, Rev. J. Medicraft ; evening, Rev. J. Hudston. On Monday, November 8th, a tea-meeting was held. The chair was taken by George H. Ford, Esq. The report was read by Mr. Poxon, and
addresses were delivered by the Revs. J. Hudston, J. Medicraft, and J. Orme, and Mr. T. Dally.
It was in the year of grace 1803 that the old chapel was built. The building was very small in its dimensions, and without any pretensions to architectural beauty. It was, however, a favourite place with many of the early ministers of the Connexion. Though it has had a chequered history, it has answered the purpose of its erection well. Within its walls many a victory has been obtained over the powers of darkness, many a trophy added to the cross of Christ, and many a gem placed in the Redeemer's crown. The Society worshipping within its walls has furnished some precious contributions to the rich obituary of Methodism. That is a beautiful instance of Christian biography, the memoir of Hannah Hunt, written by the Rev. John Hilton, and there are many more to be found in the chronicles of our Church. The old place, however, has seen its day. More than seventy years old, it began to show signs of weakness and decay. It will be preserved to the Connexion, and be used as a Sunday school and for week-night preaching.
About ten years since a desire sprang up in the congregation for a better edifice. Some of the friends thought the time was come to arise and build. They thought they heard the sound in the tops of the mulberry trees, and that it was a sign from heaven that they must bestir themselves. But they found they were in error; they mistook their own fervent wishes for the true sign. Still good seed was sown, and the first failure nerved them to higher aims and greater activity. Delay was overruled for good in many ways. By putting off the time to a more convenient season, the best site in the village has been obtained, the model deed has been adopted in settling the chapel, and much larger subscriptions have been given.
In February, 1874, the congregation and trustees resolved that a building fund should be originated, that land should be bought, and that a chapel should be erected. Collectors were appointed, and in a few days the sum of £400 was promised. An extensive plot of land in a tine situation was purchased at a high price, and it has been invested in twenty trustees according to the provisions of the model deed. A. H. Goodall, Esq., architect, of Nottingham, son of the late Rev. G. Goodall, was instructed to prepare designs, which were approved, and the work was left to Mr. W. Bailey, of Sandiacre.
On the 7th of June last nine memorial-stones were laid in the presence of hundreds of spectators. The occasion was indeed a red-letter day in this quiet old village. A brief account of the proceedings appeared in the Magazine for August, 1875. Under the direction of Mr. Goodall the building has progressed rapidly, and has been completed without accident either to life or limb; and it is universally admitted to be one of the prettiest chapels in the district.
The opening services have been attended by very large congregations, The writer felt deeply moved when requested by the trustees to preach the first sermon in this beautiful house of God in his native place.
Dr. Stacey's sermon will long be remembered, and to burdened spirits will yield comfort for many days to come.
Mr. Medicraft's discourse was an eloquent proclamation of the grand old doctrine which is the foundation of all our religious hopes, and it pointed out to all inquirers the only way to God and heaven ; and Mr. Hudston's ferrent and tender invitation to come to God and to the church, and to heaven, was a beautiful finish to the dedicatory services, and I think his persuasive appeals to their intellects and hearis could not fail to induce some to accept of the invitation.
It is a pleasant thing to be able to say that all the subscriptions recorded below have been paid ; that not a single collection at the opening failed, but far exceeded our expectations; and that all the sittings which are available are already let. And now we most fervently and anxiously pray that God's blessing may be given to the undertaking, for without His blessing nothing is good and nothing will prosper.
The following are the subscriptions :
£120, Mr. H. Plackett; £100, Rev. J. Poxon; £50, Mr. W. Plackett; £25 each, Mr. J. Plackett, Mrs. Felton, Mr. W. Straw ; £20, Mr. H. Plackett, junr.; £10, Mr. J. Thompson; £5 5., Mr. H. Hudston; £5 each, Dr. Andrew, Mr. T. Astle, Mr. W. Whiteley, 'Mr. L. Macdonald, Mr. A. H. Goodall, A Friend per Rev. J. Poxon, J. Hind and Sons, Mr. S. Plackett, Mr. J. Steveason, Mr. J. Stevenson, Mr. M. Plackett, junr., Mr. J, Woodward, Mr. R. Gamble; £3 each, Mr. S. Walker, Mr. H. Stevenson, Mr. S. Stevenson, junr ; £2 23., Mr. Fulton; £2 each, Mr. A. Wallis, T. W.