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Specimens of knox's Style.


would have infused into the counsels and policy of the Huguenots a spirit very different from that lâcheté which ultimately laid them at the feet of their relentless persecutors.

Out of such a mass of “Works," it would be a hopeless task to select extracts, even though our space could admit of it; but we have often thought that an attractive volume might be formed by culling a few gems (rough ones, no doubt, occasionally) from Knox's writings. Such, for example, as the following specimen of his sarcasm :

THE PUISSANT MOUSE." “ The poor god of bread is most miserable of all other idols. For, according to their matter whereof they are made, they will remain without corruption many years ; but within one year that god will putrefy, and then he must be burnt. They can abide the vehemencie of wind, frost, rain, or snow. But the wind will blow that god to the sea ; the rain or the snow will make it daigh again. Yea, which is most of all to be feared, that god is a prey (if he be not well kept) to rats and mice, for they will desire no better denner than white round gods mew. But 0 then, what becometh of Christ's natural body? By miracle, it flies to the heaven again, if the Papists teach truth; for how soon soever the mouse takes hold, so soon flieth Christ away, and letteth her gnaw the bread. A bold and puissant mouse, but a feeble and miserable god! Yet would I ask a question. Whether hath the priest or the mouse greater power? By his words it is made a god : by her teeth it ceaseth to be a god. Let them avise, and then answer. (VI., Part ii., p. 172.)

Our next is in a different vein, being the peroration of the famous Sermon above referred to :

"THE EARTH SHALL DISCLOSE HER BLOOD." “If such tyranny were used against any natural woman as violently to pull her infant from her breast, cut the throat of it in her own bosom, and compel her to receive the blood of her dear child in her own mouth, all nations would hold the fact so abominable that the like had never been done in the course of nature. And no less wickedness commit they that shed the blood of God's children upon the face of their common mother, the Earth. But be of good courage, O little and despised flock of Christ Jesus ; for He that seeth your grief hath power to revenge it. Your merciful God, I say, will not suffer your blood for ever to be covered with the earth ; nay, the flaming fires that have licked up the blood of any of our brethren, the earth that hath been defiled with it, shall purge herself of it, and show it before the face of God ; yea, the beasts, fowls, and other creatures whatsoever, shall be compelled to render that which unjustly they have received, be it flesh, blood, or bones, that appertained to thy children, O Lord, which altogether Thou shall glorify, according to thy promise made to us in Jesus Christ, thy Son, to whom, with Thee and the Holy Ghost, be honour, praise, and glory, for ever and ever.

In concluding our notice of this truly magnificent edition of the works of our Reformer, we would beg, in the name of all his countrymen who venerate the name of Knox, to return our thanks to the worthy editor, and in the name of such of



them as have been engaged in similar researches, we would cordially endorse the handsome tribute paid to him by a foreign writer-M. Michel—who, in the preface to his interesting work “Les Ecossais en France, describes him as

“ whose name is associated with all that has been done for the study of the history, the antiquities, and the literature of Scotland,” and who, after acknowledging, “his com

« plaisance beyond what could be imagined, not only in placing at his disposal the numerous documents he had collected during a life devoted to study, but in allowing him to carry them away

with him, to consult them in his own country at leisure," applies to Mr. Laing, as well as to Lord Lindsay, the lines of Cowper :

“ A man of letters, and of manners too,

Of manners sweet as virtue always wears,
When gay good-nature dresses her in smiles."

Art. X.-Memorials of the Rev. William Bull.

Memorials of the Rev. William Bull, of Newport Pagel. Compiled

chiefly from his own Letters, and from those of his Friends, Newton, Cowper, and Thornton. 1738-1814. By his Grandson, the Rev. Josiah Bull, M.A. London: James Nisbet and Co. 1864.

VERYBODY that has read the “Life of Cowper" must

“ from grave to

good Dissenting pastor, who was so fond of his pipe and his joke, and from whose converse, as it swung gay, from lively to severe,” the moody and

sensitive mind of the poet derived so much delight. We all wished to know something more about this worthy man, and here we have all that we wished. A more charming little book we have not read for a long time. A portrait of the worthy man is prefixed, which completely realizes the picture we drew of him from fancy; the gawcy face, the lively eyes, the facetious mouth are all there. The memoir is drawn up by his grandson, who (a very rare occurrence in the annals of Dissent) is the third generation of pastors in the same family that have officiated in the Independent Chapel of Newport Pagnel. The charm of the volume is derived, doubtless, not so much from any striking features in the life or character of Mr.

Parting Glimpses of Hervey and Toplady. 193

Bull, as from his entouragethe friends with whom we find him surrounded. There is nothing very original in his early history, if we except his remarkable devotion to learning, which led him to acquire the knowledge of Hebrew, with no other helps than a copy of the Hebrew Bible and the Hebrew letters heading the sections of the 119th Psalm. Nor does his religious experience present any marked peculiarity to distinguish it from that of thousands of others in the religious community to which he belonged, who are, or were, expected to deliver a sort of autobiography previous to their admission to the fellowship of the Church. He was led from doubt to faith, from trouble to tranquillity, from conflict to triumph,

by a way which he knew not,” but which many had known before, and “by paths which he had not trod," but which have been so often trodden before, that the reiteration can hardly fail to be monotonous, unless each Pilgrim, in giving the story of his Progress, were endowed with the genius of a

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But, as we have said, Mr. Bull's memorials are chiefly interesting from the glimpses they afford us of the excellent men with whom he was associated. Of the gentle, seraphic Hervey he himself had but a glimpse, when a boy, and then it was like the vision of a departing spirit :

“The minister at Cheese Lane at that time was the Rev. Mr. French. He afterwards removed to Ware, in Hertfordshire.* William Bull was in the habit of writing Mr. French's sermons, and a little desk was put up for his use in his grandfather's pew, and for many years it was carefully preserved. He was possessed of a very extraordinary memory; so that when on one occasion he was taken to Weston Flavel, being then about twelve or fourteen years of age, on condition of his remembering Mr. Hervey's sermon and repeating it on his return, he without difficulty accomplished the task. He related many years afterwards to my father, that although it was only an ordinary service, the church was crowded to excess, and that the windows were removed that the people outside might bear. Mr. Hervey was then in the last stage of a consumption, was pale and thin, and when he stretched out his hand, as the sun shone upon it, it was rendered almost transparent. There was one passage in the sermon to which Mr. Bull would sometimes refer. Mr. Hervey was speaking of the remains of corruption in a good man while in this world. “ You bave observed,” he said, “ the walls on either side the path leading to this church. They are covered, as you know, with ivy. Now you may

*. In Mr. French's congregation was a lady equally remarkable for her large bodily proportions and for her loquacity, which latter failing was sometimes a source of annoyance to the good man. She one day said to him, “ If I were to die, and you were to write my epitaph, I wonder what you would say." Mr. French immediately returned this smart impromptu reply

“Beneath this stone, full six feet long,

And eke as many round,
Lies one who never held her tongue,

Till silent under ground.”

pluck off the leaves, and break off the branches so that none of them shall be seen on the outside ; but the roots of the plant have so worked themselves into the wall, that it would be impossible entirely to eradicate them without taking down the wall, and not leaving one stone upon another. And so must this frail body be taken down ; and then, and not till then, shall we get rid of the remains of a degenerate nature.”

We are favoured with a glimpse at another departing saint, Mr. Toplady—whose writings prove that one may be a staunch Calvinist and yet "a sweet singer” of Gospel hymns; and whose life shows that one may be the rough disputant, and yet a rare combination of the scholar, the gentleman, and the divine. In the following anecdote Newton does not appear to great advantage :

“In the spring or early summer of this year occurred the circumstance I am about to relate. Mr. Newton had been dining with Mr. Bull, and they were quietly sitting together, following after the things whereby they might edify one another, and that search aided by “ interposing puffs” of the fragrant weed. It was in that old study I so well remember, ere it was renovated to meet the demands of modern taste. A room some eighteen feet square, with an arched roof, entirely surrounded with many a precious volume, with large old casement windows, and immense square chairs of fine Spanish mahogany. There these good men were quietly enjoying their tête-àtéte, when they were startled by a thundering knock at the door; and in came Mr. Ryland, of Northampton, abruptly exclaiming, “ If you wish to see Mr. Toplady, you must go immediately with me to the Swan. He is on his way to London, and will not live long.' They all proceeded to the inn, and there found the good man, emaciated with disease, and evidently fast hastening to the grave. As they were talking together they were attracted by a great noise in the street, occasioned, as they found on looking out, by a bull-baiting which was going on before the house. Mr. Toplady was touched by the cruelty of the scene, and exclaimed, 'Who could bear to see that sight if there were not to be some compensation for these poor suffering animals in a future state ? • I certainly hope,' said my grandfather that all the Bulls will go to heaven; but do you think this will be the case with all the animal creation ? Yes, certainly,' replied Mr. Toplady, with great emphasis, all, all.' What!' rejoined Mr. Newton, with some sarcasm in his tone ; ‘do you suppose, Sir, there will be fleas in heaven ? for I have a special aversion to them.' Mr. Toplady said nothing, but was evidently hurt ; and as they separated, Mr. Newton said, “How happy he should be to see him at Olney, if God spared his life, and he were to come that way again. The reply Mr. Toplady made was not very courteous ; but the good man was perhaps suffering from the irritation of disease, and possibly annoyed by the ridicule cast upon a favourite theory.'

The following extract gives an account of Mr. Bull's introduction to Cowper :

"Mr. Newton was very anxious, before he left Olney, that Mr. Bull should be acquainted with the poet Cowper, in the hope that, while it would be mutually interesting, it might at the same time be a source of comfort to his much-gifted, but afflicted friend ; and so it


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IIis Introduction to Cowper.





proved. A preceding letter of Mr. Cowper's makes reference to Mr. Bull's first visit. These visits very soon became a stated custom ; and as Mr. Cowper seldom went far from bome, my grandfather dined with him regularly once a fortnight, or oftener, on which occasions my father generally accompanied him. Mr. Cowper addressed the following letter to Mr. Bull, dated March 24 :

My dear Sir,- If you had only commended me as a poet, I should have swallowed your praises whole, smacked my lips, and made no reply; but as you offer me your friendship, and account me worthy of your affection—which I esteem a much greater honour than that of being a poet, even though approved by you—it seems necessary that I should not be quite dumb upon so interesting an occasion. Your letter gave me great pleasure, both as a testimony of your approbation and your regard. I write in hopes of pleasing you, and such as you ; and though I must confess that at the same time I cast a sidelong glance at the good liking of the world at large, I believe I can say it was more for the sake of their advantage and instruction than their praises. They are children ; if we give them physic, we must sweeten the rim of the cup with honey. If my book is so far honoured as to be made a vehicle of true knowledge to any that are ignorant, I shall rejoice; and do already rejoice that it has procured me a proof of your esteem, whom I had rather please that all the writers of both reviews.

• When your leisure and your health will allow you to trot over to Olney, you will most assuredly be welcome to us both, and even welcome, if you please, to light your pipe with the page in question.Yours, my dear friend, affectionately,

WM. CowPER. "• March 24, 1782.

“In speaking of Mr. Bull, in a letter to Mr. Unwin, Mr. Cowper says, -- You are not acquainted with him ; perhaps it is as well for you that you are not. You would regret still more than you do that there are so many miles interposed between us. He spends part of the day with irs to-morrow. A Dissenter, but a liberal one ; a man of letters and of genius; a master of a fine imagination, or rather not master of it-an imagination which, when he finds himself in the company he loves and can confide in, runs away with him into such fields of specution as amuse and enliven every other imagination that has the happiness to be of the party. At other times he has a tender and delicate sort of melancholy in his disposition, not less agreeable in its way. No men are better qualified for companions in such a world as this than men of such a temperament. Every scene of life has two sides,-a dark and bright one; and the mind that has an equal mixture of melancholy and vivacity is best of all qualified for the contemplation of either. He can be lively without levity, and pensive without dejection. Such a man is Mr. Bull. But he smokes tobacco ! Nothing is perfect. Nihil est ab omni parte beatum.

Mr. Bull's grandson adds, for the comfort of the lovers of the fragrant weed :

“ Yes, Mr. Bull smoked tobacco ! Three pipes a day; but he was always a dry smoker. I don't know how the habit was formed ; but it is very likely be found it an anodyne to his frequent pains of body, and that it soothed his nervous irritability. Perchance it might be supposed to give a gentle stimulus to thought. But of these things I am a very incompetent judge, for I have no experience to guide me. I only know that my grandfather regretted a habit which he often found inconvenient, and that he wished his son never to copy his example in this respect. His friends, however, were all very kindly con


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