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No. 44, Cannon Street, London, have an African elephant's tusk usually standing at their door, measuring EIGHT FEET in length, and weighing ONE HUNDRED AND FORTY POUNDS, it being thicker than that of Mr. Verinder's.
The tusks of the Indian elephant rarely exceed seventy pounds each in weight, though tusks have been brought to the India house weighing one hundred and fifty pounds each. The largest tusk of an elephant on record was one sold at Amsterdam, and which, accord. ing to Klokner, weighed THREE HUNDRED AND FIFTY
Our young readers especially will feel interested in endeavouring to form an adequate idea of these wonderful creatures, which are able to carry constantly, and with easy convenience, pairs of such massy and weighty tusks.
THOUGHTS ON FUTURE JUDGMENT.
If we must be judged, it becomes us to act with great consideration and advice; rashness, precipitancy, inadvertency, to do we know not what, in a heat and impetus, without considering whether it be good or evil, right or wrong, does not become those who must be judged. To be judged is to be called to an account, to give a reason for what we do; and therefore we ought to consider what reason to give before we do it. We must be judged by a rule, and therefore we ought to live by rule too; which no man can do, who does not consider well what he does, before he does it. It will be an ill plea at the day of judgment to say, that we did not consider what we did; that we lived without care, without thought, without observation; for this is not an allowable plea for a reasonable creature, much less for one who knows he must be judged. For why did you live without thought, without consideration? Had you not the power of thinking, of reasoning, of considering? And did not God give these powers and faculties to you, to direct and govern your lives? Did He not make you reasonable creatures, that you might consider and live by reason? and is it an excuse then for a reasonable creature, that he lived and acted without reason, and a wise consideration of things? This is the great degeneracy of human nature, the abuse and corruption of those natural powers which God hath given us, the source of all the evils that are in the world, and therefore can be no excuse; much less, when we know that God will judge us, and require a reason of our actions. For, not to consider our own ways, when we know God considers them, and will require an account of them, is a contempt of his judgment: for, did we reverence our Judge, we must consider. And yet how many mad, extravagant, wicked actions are there daily committed, which those who do them, never think why they do them; nor what reasonable account they can give of them either to God or man! Some men are very fond of what they call a frolic; that is, to lay aside all thought and consideration, and to give themselves up to the government of every sudden and unaccountable fancy: and the more wild and extravagant it is, the more entertaining, without any regard to virtue or vice, to decency and honour. They drink themselves drunk in a frolic; blaspheme God, and His Son Jesus Christ, and His most holy religion; abuse wives and virgins, and affront all they meet in a frolic. But it is ridiculous to imagine, if we must be judged, that such frolics as these shall be allowed in the account, or pass for ciphers and empty scenes of life, to signify no more than they were intended for; that because we choose at such a time to act without reason and consideration, therefore God should demand no reason nor account of such actions.
And yet a very great part of the world, though they do not run into such outrageous frolics as these are, yet their lives are little better than a train of incoherent and independent fancies and humours. They live without thought, or any wise design; any extempore project has them, which starts up in their minds, or strikes their fancies. They scarce know what they have to do the next day, nor how they spent the last. But is this a life for men who are to be judged?
Others there are who give themselves up to the government of their passions, which are so vehement and impetuous, and always in so much haste, that they will neither hear reason, nor allow any time for it and then no wonder if they do such things as they can give no good account of, when their passion is over.
Others are more fixed and resolved in their way. They have chosen such a course of life as they like best, and they are resolved to pursue it, and that nothing shall put them out of it; and therefore they too resolve against thinking, lest that should disturb them, and give check to their enjoyments. They will neither listen to their own consciences, nor hearken to the importunities of their friends, nor be persuaded to consider what the probable end of all their actions will be, both in this world, and in the next.
These are all unthinking, unconsidering sinners. But you will all confess, that these men do not live as if they were to be judged. And therefore, if we believe that we shall be judged, none of us ought to live thus for all this will not prevent our being judged; but will make us very unable to give a good account of ourselves when we are. — - Sherlock.
DYING ACKNOWLEDGMENTS OF EMINENT MEN.
DR. PRIESTLEY was the most distinguished minister among the Socinians of his day. He was born 1733, and died in 1804. From Mr. Joseph Priestley's Letter to Mr. Lindsey, quoted in Dr. Pye Smith's Letters to Mr. Belsham, we learn what miserable sources he looked to for dying consolations. We quote the following:-"He desired me to reach him a pamphlet which was at his bed's head; 'Simpson on the Duration of Future Punishment.' 'It will be a source of satisfaction to you to read that pamphlet,' said he ‘giving it to me. It contains my sentiments, and a belief in them will be a support to you in the most trying circumstances, as it has been to me. We shall all meet finally we only require different degrees of discipline, suited to our different tempers, to prepare us for final happiness.' Alas! who can but pity that great philosopher? Why should he reject the consolations of Christ? Why should he cherish his infidel opinions, and not rather have faith in the Lord Jesus Christ, and say with Paul, "I know whom I have believed, and am persuaded he is able to keep that which I have committed to him against that day?"
DR. PRICE was the most eminent among the Arians of his time: he was born in 1723, and died in 1791. From the Rev. Mr. Newton's Posthumous Works, we learn the deplorable state of uncertainty in which that celebrated speculator's mind continued to his dying day. He said, "Now, in the evening of a life devoted to inquiries, and spent in endeavours (weak and feeble indeed) to serve the best interests, present and future, of mankind; I am waiting the great teacher, convinced that the order of Nature is perfect, that infinite wisdom and goodness governs all things, and that Christianity comes from God: but at the same time puzzled by many difficulties, anxious for more light, and resting with full and constant assurance only on this one truth;-That the practice of virtue is the duty and dignity of man, and in all events his wisest and safest course."
What believer in the gospel of Christ can but pity such a man in so gloomy a state of uncertainty? How unlike to scriptural Christianity, which teaches and enables the servant of Christ to rise above such chilling
and semi-heathen sentiments ! He can say, "For to me to live is Christ, and to die is gain. For I am in a strait betwixt two, having a desire to depart, and to be with Christ, which is far better."
DR. GILL was the most learned orthodox commentator on the Scriptures of his age: he was born 1697, and died in 1771. From a memoir of his life prefixed to his Commentary, we learn, that a short time before he died, he said, "I have nothing to make me uneasy;' and then repeated the following lines from Dr. Watts, in honour of the Redeemer,
"He rais'd me from the deeps of sin,
In a letter to his relative, the Rev. John Gill of St. Alban's, he expressed himself in these terms:—" I depend wholly and alone upon the free, sovereign, eternal, unchangeable love of God, the firm and everlasting covenant of grace, and my interest in the Persons of the Trinity, for my whole salvation; and not upon any righteousness of my own, nor on any thing in me, or done by me under the influences of the Holy Spirit;" and then, as confirming what he had delivered, he added, upon any services of mine, which I have been assisted to perform for the good of the church, do I depend,
but upon my interest in the Persons of the Trinity, the free grace of God, and the blessings of grace streaming to me through the blood and righteousness of Christ, as the ground of my hope. These are no new things to me, but what I have been long acquainted with-what I can live and die hy. I apprehend I shall not be long here, but this you may tell to any of my friends."
This has been the dying experience of the true disciples of Christ in every age of the church; and the dying testimony of his servants affords much edification to those who are inquiring after the doctrines of Divine truth.
AMONG the multiplied enormities of which the ancient Canaanitish nations were guilty, that of immolating human victims at the shrine of superstition appears to have been at once the blackest and most revolting. From various passages in the sacred writings, we are led to infer, that it was the practice of this crime which filled the cup of their transgressions to overflowing, and drew down upon them that vengeance which was satiated only by their extermination. Horrid as was the custom, it appears to have been observed by the most polished nations of antiquity; the poets and historians, both of Greece and Rome, not unfrequently allude to it as a high act of adoration, and particularly efficacious in appeasing the wrath of an offended idol. Even the venerable rites of the Druids were stained with the same pollutions; and when we reflect that our own exalted island was at one time numbered among dark places of the earth and the habitations of blood," our deliverance from such gross blindness and delusion by the dissemination of Christian knowledge, is one of the brightest trophies of the triumph of the Cross, and must cause every heart to throb with genuine emotions of gratitude to that God, whose beneficence is unparallelled, and whose highest attribute is love.
REGARD TO DIVINE TRUTH.
As in the animal economy the action of the heart and of the lungs, though very different, are equally necessary for the maintenance of life, and we cannot say that either of them is more essentially requisite than the other; so in the truths of divine revelation, the knowledge and belief of which are essentially requisite with respect to the salvation of a sinner. And though they are distinct in themselves, we cannot determine which of them is of the most importance to We must understand what is our state in the sight of God, and we must be sensible of the enormity of our transgressions, or we cannot rightly understand a single chapter of the Bible. W. W. C.
GEORGE III AND LORD DARTMOUTH. WHEN Dr. Beattie was introduced to the king, at Kew, both their majesties and the doctor spoke highly of Lord Dartmouth; and the king added, "They say that Lord Dartmouth is an enthusiast; but surely he says nothing on the subject of religion, but what every Christian may and ought to say."-Forbes's Life of Beattie.
EPITAPH ON A CHILD.
What thou art now, our hopes would gladly tell;
ON THE INVENTION OF LETTERS.
In early times, the Press as yet unknown,
While round him mouldering ruins mock'd his care,
His mind embalm'd defies th' o'erwhelming tomb;
Nor yields its powers whilst nature guides the spheres.
Immortal spirits! ye who first could feel
VOLCANIC REMAINS IN MEXICO. WE gave in a former number (p. 32) an account of a large tract of country covered with lava, we now subjoin the following from the same work.
"If I was surprised in passing the crater of the volcano, in my way to Perote, I was astonished at here beholding the contents probably of that very crater before me, filling an extensive valley, many leagues in length, with an immense sea of lava, which, from the slope of the mountain that bounded it, I should judge in several places to be many hundred fathoms thick, converting what had been a deep valley into a vast plain of solid rock, on whose surface the marks of its progress and violent agitation, when in a state of fusion, are as fresh as if the event had taken place but yesterday, except that in some places a few stunted and scanty specimens of vegetation appeared in some of the fissures of the iron-like lava. We rode on for
about a mile and a half with tolerable ease, when the route gradually became worse. It began to assuine a wave-like appearance, and the cracks or fissures were so large that our horses were in momentary danger of falling into them, so that it was impossible to take them further. - We accordingly rested about half an hour, which gave me time to examine the place where we had halted, which certainly exhibits one of the most extraordinary and wonderful effects of the convulsions of nature that even came under my observation. The basaltic formation of the Giant's Causeway, of Staffa, or the more gigantic ones of the Shant Isles, falls very short of the wondrous appearance of this valley. On our first entrance upon it, the lava appeared to have cooled in almost a quiescent state, its surface being only marked by slight concentric circles: but in a short time these increased in size, and rose in sharp ridges of several feet high, and occasionally swelled in the bubble-like form seen in the crater: to these succeeded large waves, rising to a considerable height, and their tops rent into the most fantastic shapes. In other places, the lava exhibited the appear. ance of huge boiling cauldrons, which had burst and emptied themselves in violent torrents. On the left, near the edges, cataracts, several hundred yards wide, had swept down immense masses of broken rocks, some of them many hundred tons weight; - these, floating like corks on the melted lava, had met with some impediments in their way, and remain, piled upon each other by the impetuous burning stream, in the most extraordinary manner; leaving to distant ages these striking proofs of the horrid combustion of internal subterraneous fires, by which the higher mountain districts have been formed."
THE FURIA INFERNALIS.
LINNAEUS in describing this animal, of the existence of which many have expressed their incredulity, tells us it is to be met with in the vast marshy plains of Bothnia and Finland, where it crawls up shrubs and sedge grass, and being carried forward by the wind, penetrates suddenly into such exposed parts of men and horses as are not perpendicularly situated. It quickly buries itself under the skin, leaving a black point where it entered, which is soon succeeded by excruciating pain, inflammation and gangrene of the part, swooning and death. This all happens in a day or two, frequently within a few hours, unless the animal be extracted, which is done by carefully dissecting the muscles where it has entered. The statement of this eminent naturalist has been fully confirmed by modern travellers in Norway and Sweden. W. W. C.
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WAKES IN ENGLAND.
ORIGIN OF WAKES.-Wakes, or watches, so called from the Gothic word waken, or the Saxon wacian, originated in the idolatrous superstition of paganism. Wakes were rightly festivals kept in honour of the tutelar divinities on the anniversaries of the dedication of their temples.
Dr. Kennett, in his "Roman Antiquities," observes, "The ceremony of the consecration of temples (a piece of superstition very well worth our notice), we cannot better apprehend than by the following account which Tacitus gives us of that solemnity in reference to the capitol, when repaired by Vespasian; though perhaps the chief rites were celebrated upon the entire raising of the structure, this being probably intended only for the hallowing the floor. Upon the 21st of June, being a very clear day, the whole plot of ground designed for the temple was bound about with fillets and garlands. Such of the soldiers as had lucky names, entered first with boughs in their hands, taken from those trees which the gods more especially delighted in. Next came the vestal virgins, with boys and girls whose fathers and mothers were living, and sprinkled the place with brook-water, river-water, and springwater. Then Heloidius Priscus, the Prætor (Plautus Elian, one of the chief priests, going before him), after he had performed the solemu sacrifice of a swine, a sheep, and a bullock, for the purgation of the floor, and laid the entrails upon a green turf, humbly besought Jupiter, Juno, Minerva, and the other deities, protectors of the empire, that they would be pleased to prosper
their present undertaking, and accomplish, by their divine assistance, what hunan piety had thus begun. Having concluded this prayer, he put his hands to the fillets, to which the ropes, with a great stone fastened to them, had been tied for this occasion; when immediately the whole company of priests, senators, and knights, with the greatest part of the common people, laying hold together on the rope, with all the expressions of joy, drew the stone into the trench designed for the foundation, throwing in wedges of gold, silver, and other metals, which had never endured the fire.""
These dedications were solemnized and commemorated with all the extravagance of superstition, and with all the licentious impurities inseparable from pagan idolatry, and continued, on some occasions, for several days and nights.
POPISH WAKES -The learned Mr. Whitaker, in his History of Manchester, has given a particular account of the origin of English wakes and fairs. He observes, that "every church at its consecration received the name of some particular saint: this custom was practised among the Roman Britons, and continued among the Saxons; and in the council of Cealchythe, in 816, the name of the denominating saint was expressly required to be inscribed on the altars, and also on the walls of the church, or a tablet within it. The feast of this saint became of course the festival of the church. Thus Christian festivals were substituted in the room of the idolatrous anniversaries of heathenism: accordingly, at the first introduction of Christianity among the
Jutes of Kent, Pope Gregory the Great advised, that what had previously been done among the Britons, should be continued-that Christian festivals should be instituted in the room of the idolatrous, and the suffering day of the martyr whose relics were reposited in the church, or the day on which the building was actually dedicated, to be the established feast of the parish. Both were appointed and observed; and they were clearly distinguished at first among the Saxons, as appears from the laws of the Confessor. Thus instituted at first, the day of the tutelar saint was observed, most probably by the Britons, and certainly by the Saxons, with great devotion. When Pope Gregory recommended the festival of the patron saint, he advised the people to erect booths of branches about the churches on the day of the festival, and to feast and be merry in them with innocence. Accordingly, in every parish, on the returning anniversary of the saint, little pavilions were constructed of boughs, and the people indulged in them in hospitality and mirth. The feasting of the saint's day, however, was soon abused; and even in the body of the church, when the people were assembled for devotion, they began to mind diversions, and to introduce drinking. These celebrities were the cause of those commercial marts, which we denominate fairs. The people resorted in crowds to the festival; and a considerable provision being wanted for their entertainment, little traders were invited by interest to bring their wares for sale. Thus among the many pavilions for hospitality in the neighbourhood of a church, various booths were erected for the sale of different commodities. In larger towns and populous districts, the resort of the people to the WAKES would be great, and the attendance of the traders numerous; and this resort and attendance constitute a FAIR," from the Latin word feria, a holiday.
PROTESTANT WAKES.-Those holy men, who effected the Reformation from Popery, were determinately op. posed to the ancient wakes with their immoralities: but they were not able to accomplish the perfection of their various plans, many of them being numbered with the "Noble Army of Martyrs." Elizabeth restored the Reformation in part; but much of popery remained in numerous festivals and ceremonies, though many holy men, retaining the spirit of the Reformers, laboured for greater purity in the externals of religion, and the abolition of the demoralizing and pernicious customs: hence they were denominated Puritans. Their influence with the religious and sober part of the nation was very great; but King James disliked their strict, scriptural morality. He therefore commanded Bishop Moreton to draw up a declaration, commonly known by the name of the "Book of Sports," to encourage recreations and sports on festivals and on the Lord's day. It states, "That for his good people's recreation, his Majesty's pleasure is, that, after the end of divine service, they should not be disturbed, letted, or discouraged, from any lawful recreations such as dancing, either of men or women; archery for men; leaping, vaulting, or any such harmless recreations; nor having of May-games, Whitson-ales, or May.poles, or other sports therewith used, so as the same may be had in due and convenient time, without impediment or let of divine service; and that women should have to carry rushes into the church for the decoring of it, according to their old customs; withal prohibiting all unlawful games to be used on Sundays only; as bear-baiting, bull-baiting, interludes, and at all times (in the meaner sort of people prohibited) bowling." This declaration was ordered to be read in all the parish churches of Lancashire especially, where papists abounded: and it was to have been read in all the churches throughout England, but that the
pious Archbishop Abbot peremptorily forbad its being read at Croydon, where he was residing. This refusal cost the upright prelate his favour with his sovereign, as the court had their balls, masquerades, and plays, even on the Lord's day evenings!
Archbishop Laud, in the reign of Charles I, was a perfect contrast to holy Abbot, and he revived the wakes and Sunday revels. Pierce, Bishop of Bath and Wells, in reply to the archbishop, who was offended with the judges for prohibiting them, says, "The late suppression of the revels was very unacceptable, and that the restitution of them would be very grateful to the gentry, clergy, and common people: for proof of which he had procured the hands of seventy-two of his clergy, in whose parishes these feasts are kept; and he believes that if he had sent for a hundred more he should have had the same answer from them all; but these seventytwo," says his lordship, "are like the seventy-two interpreters that agreed so soon in the translation of the Old Testament in the Greek. There are in Somersetshire," says he, "not only feasts of dedication (wakes), but also church-ales, clerk-ales, and bid-ales."
"The Feasts of Dedication are in memory of the dedication of the several churches; those churches dedicated to the Holy Trinity have their feasts on TrinitySunday; and so all the feasts are kept upon the Sunday before or after the saint's day to whom the churches are dedicated, because the people have not leisure to observe them on the week-day; this (says his lordship) is acceptable to the people, who otherwise go into the tipling houses, or else to conventicles.
"Church-Ales are, when the people go from afternoon prayers on Sunday to their lawful sports and pastimes in the churchyard, or in the neighbourhood, in some public-house, where they drink and make merry.
Clerk-Ales, are so called, because they were for the better maintenance of the parish-clerk, &c., the people, thinking it unfit that the clerk should duly attend at church and gain but small wages, send him in provision, and then come on Sundays, and feast with him, by which means he sells more ale, &c.
"A Bid-Ale is, when a poor man, decayed in his substance, is set up again by the liberal benevolence and contribution of his friends at a Sunday's feast."
English Wakes in the Nineteenth Century.
We are not acquainted with every parish in the kingdom; but we well know, that many of the evils before enumerated, have been abolished, or greatly counteracted in not a few parishes in different parts of the country. The active vigilance of patriotic magistrates; the establishment of Sunday-schools for the religious education of the poor; and especially the indefatigable zeal of itinerant preachers of the gospel, of different denominations, have been the means of incalculable benefit. Parts of Staffordshire, for example, at the commencement of this century, presented scenes the most shocking in many parishes among the colliers, nailers, iron-makers, miners, &c.: cock-fighting, bullbaiting, badger-baiting, bear-baiting, with every species of profaneness, intemperance, impurity, and brutality. In those same districts godliness now prevails in an eminent degree; and Wednesbury, Darlaston, Tipton, Bilston, Oldbury, &c. &c., now are blessed with many chapels, where the gospel is preached faithfully and "with the Holy Ghost sent down from heaven." Still an affecting measure of ungodliness prevails; and much remains to be done, fully to evangelize the people.
Greenwich on Easter and Whit-Sunday, with several following days, and Deptford, on Trinity Sunday, with following days, are still cursed with almost every