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TO THE DEITY.
O THOU, the great all-moving cause,
And plac'd them in their glorious spheres; Great Guardian of our mortal race,
Our first, our best, unchanging friend, Who fill'st infinity of space,
And hast nor origin nor end;
At every mention of Thy name,
So by the lesser lights be taught,
"THY WILL BE DONE.”
J. J. W.
PARENT of Good, Almighty Power supreme,
SOLILOQUY ON LIFE.
OH, Earth! in maiden innocence, Too early fled thy golden time!
J. J. W.
Oh, Earth! Earth! Earth! for man's offence,
Of how much glory then bereft;
And Death himself, with all the woes
That hasten, yet prolong his stroke,
Religion our Compass in the Voyage of Life.-Religion is our compass; the only instrument for directing and determining our course: and though it will not save the trouble of working the vessel, nor diminish the necessity of vigilance in guarding against rocks and shoals, yet it constantly points to that star, which by ascertaining our course ensures our safety.
WILBERFORCE'S PRACTICAL VIEW OF
A Practical View of the Prevailing Religious System of Professed Christians in the Higher and Middle Classes in this Country, contrasted with Real Christianity. By W. Wilberforce, Esq., Member of Parliament for the County of York. A new Edition, to which is prefixed the Life of the Author, including a succinct account of the Slave Trade, and its Abolition. 18mo. pp. 316, cloth. London, Wood and Son. We sincerely rejoice in seeing this valuable work published in this neat manner, and at a price so unusually low, and give it our unqualified recommendation. The "Life" of Mr. Wilberforce we have read with unusual pleasure, and have no doubt of its being prized as an interesting appendage to the volume. Mr. Wilberforce's work embraces most of the grand peculiarities of the gospel, as held by most denominations of Protestant Christians; and it deserves a place in every family library. Mr. Wilson (the present Bishop of Calcutta) in his Essay on Mr. Wilberforce's treatise, gives it the following just character: "The design of the author was to rouse the nation, and especially the higher orders, to a just view of the subject of real Christianity. It is manly, and yet conciliatory exposure of the false principles and defective practice of professed Christians, accompanied by a powerful ex. hibition of what true religion is, as it is delineated in the Bible, and displayed in the spirit and temper of sincere Christians. It is a contrast between Christianity lowered, misapprehended, obscured, falsified, by the prevailing doctrine and morals of the day; and Christianity as it came from heaven, as it remains in all its freshness in the Sacred Records, as it is loved and obeyed by those in every age, who, like the primitive Christians, or our Reformers of the sixteenth century, come out from the world, and live unto God by the faith of a crucified Saviour. It is a book of first principles, displaying the Christian religion as it ought to exist in the case of every Christian, and then contrasting this with the low and defective standard of the prevailing religion around us." "Love is stamped on every page."
INTEREST IN THE PERFECTIONS OF DEITY. Omnipotence is our shield, unerring wisdom our guide, boundless goodness our present joy and future hope, infinite holiness and rectitude the example we should imitate according to our poor capacity, and a light to show us our own unworthiness; infinite majesty inspires us with awe and reverence, and infinite justice with a high sense of the importance of righteousness and obedience; omniscience and omnipresence strike us with terror when we do evil, and fill us with joy when we do well. God's natural and moral government of the world give peace and security to our mind, as it satisfies us that the Divine providence can and always will bring order out of confusion, and make every event conducive to our temporal or eternal welfare.
'Tis foolish in us to muse on vanity, when we have the love of God to think of: to let the mill grind chaff, when there is plenty of corn at hand.—Dr. Manton. London: Printed and Published by C. WOOD AND SON, Poppin's Court, Fleet Street; to whom all Communications for the Editor (post paid) should be addressed; —and sold by all Booksellers and Newsmen in the United Kingdom.
Hawkers and Dealers Supplied on Wholesale Terms, by STBILL, Paternoster Row; BERGER, Holywell Street, Strand; F. BAISLER, 124, Oxford Street; and W. Ñ. BAKER, 16, City Road, Finsbury.
PUBLISHED EVERY SATURDAY.
NOVEMBER 23, 1833
PRINTED AND PUBLISHED BY C. WOOD AND SON, POPPIN'S COURT, FLEET STREET, LONDON.
CHAPEL OF HENRY VII, WESTMINSTER
WESTMINSTER ABBEY and Henry the Seventh's Chapel, are deservedly among the chief attractions of the metropolis to strangers visiting London.
Elegance and art have been so combined in the architecture and ornaments of the latter edifice, that an author of some note a few years ago expressed his sense of its beauty in these terms: "It is the admiration of the universe, such inimitable perfection appears in every part of the whole composure; which looks so far exceeding human excellence, that it appears knit together by the fingers of angels, pursuant to the direction of Omnipotence."
This "wonder of the world," as it may well be styled, is externally adorned with sixteen Gothic towers, beautifully ornamented with admirable ingenuity, and jutting from the building in different angles. It is situated to the east of the Abbey, to which it is so neatly joined, that at a superficial view it appears to be all one building. It is enlightened by a double range of windows, which throw the light into such a happy disposition, as at once to please the eye, and inspire reverence.
Having entered this beautiful sanctuary, the eye of the visitor will naturally look to the lofty ceiling, which is of stone, wrought with such astonishing variety of figures, as cannot be reached by any description. The stalls are of brown wainscot, with Gothic canopies, most beautifully carved, as are the seats, with strange devices, to which nothing in wood is now equal. The pavement is of black and white marble, done at the expense of Dr. Killigrew, once prebendary of the Abbey. The east view from the entrance presents the brass chapel and tomb of the royal founder; and round it, where the east end forms a semicircle, are the chapels of the dukes of Buckingham and Richmond. The side aisles were open to the nave at the east end, on each side the founder's tomb; and at the east end of the south aisle is the royal vault; and of the other, the monuments of the murdered princes. The walls, as well of the nave as of the south aisles, are wrought into the most curious figures imaginable, and contain one hundred and twenty large statues of patriarchs, saints, martyrs, and confessors, placed in niches, under which are angels supporting imperial crowns, besides innumerable small ones, all of them esteemed so curious, that the best masters have travelled from abroad to copy them. The windows, which are fourteen in the upper, and nineteen in the lower range, including the side aisles and portico, were formerly of painted or diapered glass, having in every pane a white rose, the badge of Lancaster, or an h, the initial letter of the founder's name, and portcullises, the badge of the Beauforts, crowned, of which a few only are now remaining. The roof is flattish, and is supported on arches between the nave and side aisles, which turn upon twelve stately Gothic pillars, curiously adorned with figures, fruitage, and foliage. The length of this chapel within, is ninety-nine feet, the breadth sixty-six, and the height fifty-four.
What is chiefly to be admired here, as well for antiquity as fine workmanship, is the magnificent tomb of Henry VII and Elizabeth his Queen, the last of the house of York who wore the English crown. This tomb stands in the body of the chapel, enclosed in a curious chantry of cast brass, most admirably designed and executed, and ornamented with statues, of which those only of St. George, St. James, St. Bartholomew, and St. Edward, are now remaining. Within it are the effigies of the royal pair, in their robes of state, lying close to one another, on a tomb of black marble, the head whereof is supported by a red dragon, the ensign
of Cadwallader, the last king of the Britons, from whom King Henry VII was fond of tracing his descent, and the foot by an angel. There are likewise other devices, alluding to his family and alliances; such as portcullises, signifying his relation to the Beauforts by his mother's side; roses twisted and crowned, in memory of the union of the two royal houses of Lancaster and York; and at each end a crown in a bush, referring to the crown of Richard III found in a hawthorn, near Bosworth Field, where that famous battle was fought for a diadem, which turning in favour of Henry, his impatience was so great to be crowned, that he caused the ceremony to be performed on the spot, with that very crown his competitor had lost. There are six compartments, three on the north, and as many on the south side of its base. The first compartment, on the south side, contains the figures of the Virgin Mary with our Lord in her arms, and that of the archangel St. Michael. The figures in the scales, though now mutilated, were meant for personal representations of moral good and evil; the saint is weighing them in his balance; the good preponderates; but the devil, who is represented by the figure under his feet, is reaching, with one of his clawed feet, at the scale which contains the figure of evil, in order, by the addition of his own force, to render that the heaviest. The first figure in the second compartment is, doubtless, intended for St. John the Baptist, he having a book in his left hand, with an Agnus Dei impressed upon it. The other is the figure of St. John the Evangelist and the figure of the eagle.
The first figure in the third compartment is intended for St. George; the other figure in the same compartment, from the pig's head visible near him, the frequent symbol by which he is denoted, intended for St. Anthony of Vienna.
"The first figure in the fourth compartment, north side, is meant for Mary Magdalen, supposing to hold the box of ointment. The other figure represents St. Barbara, who was the daughter of a pagan, and dwelt with her father in a certain tower. To this tower adjoined a garden, in which the father had determined to build a bath, with the necessary accommodation of rooms, and therein to make windows to the number of two only. Being to undertake a journey, he left his instructions with the artificers, which his daughter presumed to vary, by directing them, instead of two, to make three. Upon her father's return, he inquired into the reason of this deviation from his orders; and being told, that in allusion to the three persons of the Holy Trinity, his daughter had directed it, he found that she was become a convert to Christianity; and being exasperated thereat, stimulated the emperor to a persecution of the Christians, in which she became a martyr to the faith.
"The first figure in the fifth compartment is intended for St. Christopher, hearing our Saviour upon his shoulder. The other figure in this compartment is thought to be St. Anne.
"In the sixth and last compartment, the first figure is intended for King Edward the Confessor. The other figure is a Benedictine monk.”
PIETY, PENITENCE, AND SUPERSTITION OF HENRY. Sir James Mackintosh, in his excellent History of England, gives the following character of Henry the Seventh's Christianity: "His religion, as far as we are informed, never calmed an angry passion, nor withheld him from a profitable wrong. He seems to have shown it chiefly in the superstitious fears which haunted his death-bed, when he made a feeble attempt to make amends for irreparable rapine by restoring what he could no longer enjoy, and struggled to hurry through
the formalities of a compromise with the justice of Heaven for his misdeeds."
Henry's "will" appears to have been drawn up by some of the most distinguished prelates of that age, a few days before his death; and the contents of that remarkable document justify the statement of Sir James ; and the services which the dying monarch, by the advice of his royal chaplains, commanded to be used for the repose of his soul after death, will serve to exhibit the manners, customs, and superstitions of those times. They have been taken from a very rich volume now in the British Museum, and inserted by Malcolm in his "Londinum REDIVIVUM," with his observations.
"The first article binds every monk in the monastery to assist at high mass at the high altar, to pray for the king's prosperity and welfare during his life. Then follows the service, to be pronounced while the world shall last, at high mass, at the high altar, after the king's decease.
These priests, after the king's decease, addressed the congregation thus: Sirs, I exhorte and moeve you specially and devoutly of your charitie to praye for the soule of the most christen Prince, Kyng Henry the 7th, late Kyng of Englonde, founder of thre daily masses, perpetually to be sayed at this altier, whosys body restesth here buried.' At a quarter of an hour before each mass, the great bell of the Abbey was tolled forty strokes. As this altar was intended only for a temporary purpose, it was removed on certain days of ceremony to the south aisle, facing the chapel of St. Benedict.
"On the 12th of February, annually, the hearse for the king, and his altar, were adorned with 100 tapers, each weighing twelve pounds, and nine feet in length; twenty-four almsmen were arranged round it with torches, twenty-four pounds in weight. After those were prepared, the bells began to toll, as for the auniversary of Richard the Second.
"A procession then commenced through the choir to the high altar, formed by the monks, prior, and abbot; the lord chancellor, lord treasurer, chief justice, master of the rolls, chief baron of the exchequer, and five other justices, together with the lord mayor, recorder, and sheriffs of London. The abbot then proceeded to the high altar, and began the mass of requiem, while the monks kneel before it. The officers of state kneeling before the hearse said the psalm De profundis, with the prayers belonging to the office.
"The hearse had four tapers, eleven feet in length, placed on the middle of each side (to burn perpetually), and thirty to be lighted only during the obit, mass, and even song. The sockets were set in crests of roses and portcullises; and the tapers never consumed lower than four feet, when they were replaced.
"We have little reason to wonder at his thus besieging heaven, after perusing the prelude to his will, which he made in March 31st, 1509: We saye at this tyme, as sithence the first yeres of discresonne we have been accustomid, theis wordes, Dne lhu Xe, qui me ex nihilo creasti, fecisti, redemisti, et predestinasti ad hoc quod sum, tu scis quid de me facere vis; fac de me sdm voluntatem tuam cum misericordia *. Therefore doe of mee thy will; with grace, pitie, and mercy, most humbly and entirelie I beseeche thee. And thus unto the I bequeth, and into thy most mercifull handes my soule I committe. And howbeite I am a sinful creature, in sinne conceyved, in synne have lyved, knowing perfectlie that of my merites I cannot attaine to the İyfe everlastinge, but onlie by the merits of thy blessed
O Lord Jesus Christ, who hast created me from nothing, who hast made, redeemed, and predestinated me to what I am, thou knowest what thou wilt do with me, deal with me in mercy according to thy will.
passion, and of thy infinite mercy and grace; nathlesse, my moste mercyful Redeemer, Maker, and Saviour, Í trust that, by the speciall grace and mercy of thy moste blessed mother, ever virgin, our ladie St. Mary, in whom, after thee, in this mortall lyfe hathe ever byue my moste singuler truste and confidence: to whom in all my necessities I have made my continuall refuge, and by whome I have hitherto in all my adversities ever hadd my speciall comforte and reliefe; will now in my most extreame neede, of her infinite pitie, take my soule into her handes, and it presente unto her most dere sonne; whereof sweetest ladie of mercie, verie mother and virgin, wel of pitie, and surest refuge of all needfull, most humblie, moste entirelie, and most hartile, I beseech the; and for my comforte in this behalfe, I trust also to the singuler meditacon and praiers of all the holie company of Heaven: that is to saye, angeles, archangeles, patriarks, profits, apostles, evangelistes, masters, confessours, and virgines; and especiallie to mine accustomed avours I calle and crie, St. Michael, St. John Baptist, St. John Evangelist, St. George, St. Anthony, St. Edwarde, St. Vincent, St. Anne, St. Mary Magdalen, and St. Barbara; humblie beseechinge not onlie at the hower of death soe to aide, socore, and defend me, that the aunciente and gostlie ennemye, nor non other evell or dampnable sperete, have no power to envade me, nor with his terribleness to anoy me,' &c."
FUNERAL OF HENRY VII.
Henry gave particular directions for his funeral, charging his executors to avoid dampnable pompe, and outrageous superfluities;' a piece of advice little consistent with other parts of his will, which indicate the excessive grandeur of his establishment, and from which we further learn, that the high altar, dedicated to our lady, was to be adorned with the large image of her in his possession; a cross plated, with gold and silver gilt candlesticks; the vestments for the priests officiating were to be of gold tissue; and on solemn feasts was placed a fragment of the real cross, set in gold, and resplendent in jewels, with golden and silver chalices, cruets, candlesticks, embroidered altar cloths, vestments, &c.
"Lest his soul might not rest in peace, although every precaution certainly was taken by him that poor sinner could take, he requested 10,000 masses should be said in the monastery, London, for its repose; 1,500 in honour of the Trinity; 2,500 in honour of the five wounds of the Lord Jesus Christ; 2,500 to the five joys of our Lady; 450 to the nine orders of angels; 150 to the honour of the patriarchs; 600 to the twelve apostles; and 2,300 to the honour of all saints; and all those to be sung in a little month after his de
"He directed that a statue of himself kneeling, three feet in height from the knees, should be carved in wood, representing him in armour, with a sword and spurs, and holding the crown of Richard III, won by him at Bosworth Field.
"This figure was to be plated with fine gold, ant enamelled with his arms, to be placed on a table of silver-gilt, on the shrine of Edward the Confessor, and dedicated to God and the Virgin.
Henry died on the 22d of April, and on the 9th of May, 1509, his body was placed in a chariot, covered with black cloth of gold, which was drawn by fire spirited horses, whose trappings were of black velvet, adorned with quishions of gold. The effigies of his majesty lay upon the corpse, dressed in his regal habiliments. The carriage had, suspended on it, banners of arms, titles, and pedigrees. A number of prelates preeeded the body, who were followed by the deceased
king's servants; after it were nine mourners; 600 men bearing torches surrounded the chariot.
"The procession was met in St. George's Fields by all the priests and clergy of London and its neighbourhool, and at London Bridge by the lord mayor, aldermen, and common-council, in black. To render this awful scene sublimely grand, the way was lined with children, who held burning tapers; those, with the flashes of great torches, whose red rays darting in every direction upon the glittering objects, and embroidered copes, showing the solemn pace, uplifted eyes, and mournful countenances, must have formed a noble picture. The slow monotonous notes of the chant, mixed with the sonorous tones of the great bells, were not less grateful to the ear. When the body had arrived at St. Paul's, which was superbly illuminated, it was taken from the chariot, and carried to the choir, where it was placed benearth a hearse, arrayed with all the accompaniments of death. A solemn mass and dirge were then sung, and a sermon preached by the Bishop of Rochester. It rested all night in the church. On the following day the procession recominenced in the same manner, except that Sir Edward Howard rode before on a fine charger, clothed with drapery, on which was the king's arms.
"We will now suppose him removed by six lords from his chariot to the hearse prepared for him, formed by nine pillars set full of burning tapers, inclosed by a double railing; view him placed under it, and his effigies on a rich pall of gold close to him; the nine mourners, near them knights bearing banners of saints, and surrounded by officers of arins. The prelates, abbot, prior and convent, and priests, in measured paces silently taking their places; when, breaking through the awful pause, Garter, king at arms, cried with an audible voice, 'For the soul of the noble Prince King Henry the Seventh, late king of this realm.' A deep peal from the organ and choir answers in a chant of placebo and the dirge; the sounds die away, and with then the whole assembly retires."
ON THE DIVINE ATTRIBUTES.
No. VII. THE HOLINESS OF GOD.
III. God's manifestations of himself will also be found to establish the doctrine now attempted to be illustrated : but as space will not permit me to refer to all these wondrous displays that are recorded, I must content myself with selecting one, though at the same time it will be convenient to mark some of the passages for the perusal of those who are disposed fully to examine the subject: Exod. xix; Job xl, xlii; Isa. vi; Ezek. i; and the various visions of Daniel, ch. vii. The one which I shall select is from Isaiah, wherein the prophet describes the appearance of the Lord, who gave him his commission to preach to the stiff-necked Israelites. The personages said to surround the throne of God, are the very highest in the scale of created beings, the dominions and principalities of heaven, of whose lofty and exalted nature we know but little, save only, that they are far superior to ourselves: and yet, great and mighty as they are, they stand before the throne of Jehovah, veiling their faces from the beams of uncreated glory, too bright for the seraphim themselves to endure; but they are not mute spectators of the glorious scene, their time is occupied in chanting the praises of their Maker; and the language they employ is of the most fervent and devout description, ascribing to Him that sitteth on the throne the marvellous appellation, "Holy Holy! Holy!" The effect of these august Bounds is commensurate with their greatness, for the
posts of the door shake, the ponderous and magnificent pillars of brass tremble as a leaf before the blast of the desert, and the whole temple is involved in that cloud of smoke, wherein God is said to make his pavilion. To which of the deities of Greece and Rome shall we refer for similar accounts of their manifestation? What human mind ever conceived such surpassing splendour? Who does not feel ready to join in the shout of those spotless beings who surround the Almighty's throne?
IV. God's requirements of his servants and people, show his holiness. The revelation which he has written
does not consist merely in lofty descriptions, and wondrous manifestations of his greatness: oh! no, it appeals to the heart and life of all who profess to beJieve in it, and is throughout full of entreaties to cease to do evil, and to learn to do well. I am the more anxious to enforce this on the attention of our readers, as men of the present day are apt to insinuate that Christianity is a cloke for licentiousness. The only effectual reply to this unfounded slander is “to live it down."
The thoughts, which men are disposed to regard as sacred to themselves, come under the scrutiny of the Gospel, and are regarded by him who is to be the future Judge of mankind in the light of actions worthy of reward and punishment. Let therefore those who imagine that there can be no harm in indulging sinful thoughts, provided they never practise them, beware of the wickedness and sorrow they are entailing on themselves. The habit is one of a most pernicious character, and like all other sinful dispositions, when unchecked grows with amazing rapidity. And for their caution I would advise them to remember, that all those actions, the commission of which has excited the horror and amazement of mankind, have originated in that secret recess of thought which is hidden from every human eye. Cleanse then, O God, the thoughts of our heart, by the inspiration of thy Holy Spirit.
Our words also must be regulated with a strict regard to the requirements of Christianity. That religion which breathes nothing but love, is perfectly inconsistent with the slander and detraction that is daily going on in the world. Let it then be impressed on the remembrance of all, that evil-speaking, lying, and slandering, are expressly prohibited; that henceforth they are bound to keep their mouth as it were with a bridle; and that the language of insult, of falsehood, of blasphemy, or folly, is an open violation of His commands with whom we have to do.
Our actions likewise are subjected to the same standard. So that whatever be the scene of life in which we are placed, whatever may be the duties that are exacted of us, we must ever bear in mind our responsibility to a higher tribunal than any which the princes of this world can establish. We have before our eyes a pattern of purity and excellence, a resemblance to which we are required to cultivate. Whatever therefore may be our sphere of action, there let this virtue shine; and while we thus grow in grace and the knowledge of Christ Jesus, we shall be reading to the world a lesson which the scoff of ridicule can neither gainsay nor deny: "That the grace of God which bringeth salvation hath appeared to all men, teaching them to deny ungodliness and worldly lusts, and to live soberly, righteously, and godly, in this present world."
V. The society of heaven, proves the Divine holiness. The dwelling place of God is ever represented as pure, spotless, and holy. The ideas which men form of heaven are altogether imperfect, if they do not make it a fundamental principle, that sin is excluded from its regions for ever. The declarations of Scripture on this point are most explicit, and are so well known to all,