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THE Exemplary LIFE
Ames Bonnell, Esq; was born at Genoa the Mr. Bonnell's
near Norwich, Esq; ) to Samwel Bonnell, Merchant, who resided some time at Genoa,
and many years at Leghorn, where the great Trade he carry'd on, bis Sweet and Obliging Behaviour, but especially the Piety and Integrity of his Life, procur'd him great Credit and Eleem. His Grandfather was Daniel Bonnell of London, Merchant, His Great Grandfather Thomas Bonnell
, A Gentlenan of a Good Family near Ipres in Flanders, who to avoid Duke D'Alva's Fury then cruelly Pero fecuting the Protestants in the Low Countries, Transported Himself and his family into England, and settled at Norwich; where he was To well Receiv'd, and fo much Esteem'd, as to be afterwards chosen Mayor of that City : Thus a Zeal for Religion professed in its greatest Purity, was Mr. Bonnell's Hereditary Virtue; what he deriv'd from his Ancestors, and constantly maintain'd himself in times of greatest Difficulty and Danger.
Samuel Bonnell, Father of James Bonnell, af. ter being Bred up under Sir William Cour. teen, Knight; one of the greatest Merchants of his Time, and for some time Entrusted with the sole Management of his Affairs, apply'd himself to the Italian Trade at Leghorn, which he did with such Success, that about the Year 1649, he was worth at least Ten Thousand Pounds, and his Credit much greater than his Fortune: But both were soon Impair'd by several Accidents, by great Loffes at Sea, but particularly by his Žeal for the Royal Family, of whose Sufferings he ever had a moft Ten. der Senie, and whom he privately supplied with considerable Sums of Money. And there
yet remain Letters to him from the then Queen Mother, King, Crarles the Second, and his Brother the Duke of York, Acknowledging his fast Friendship to them, and the Supplies they bad jo seasonably receiv'd from him, and recommending Mr. Killigrew to him, whom they sent to promote their Interests in thosé Parts. All the Losses and Misfortunes which befel him, he bore with great Submission to the Will of God; and Compos'd many Devout Meditations upon thole Melancholly Occalions, which yet remain among his Sons Papers; most of which were for his Wife's Use, and sent to her when he was forc'd to be Absent from her: And both those Papers, and the Informations of some who knew him,particularly,the Reverend Mr. Strype, Minister of Low-Leyton, near London, Nephew to Samuel Bonnell, and his son's constant Friend, do all concur in this, That ħe was a Man of great Sweetness of Temper, Sincerę Virtue, and Exemplary Piety.
About the Year 1655, Samuel Bonnell Re- His Father mov'd with his family into England; and up-Settles in on the Restoration of the Royal Family, the England, and Services he had done them, and his known is made AcAbilities for such an Employment, procurd comptant Gehim a Patent to be Accomptant General of the peral in Pre
land Revenue of Ireland, bis Son's Life being Included in the Parent with his own. But.this he was not long postess'd of, for he Dy’d in the Dies Year 1664, leaving his Son James Bonnell and One Daughter to the Care of his Wife, a Wo. man of singular Piety and Prudence, both which the employed in the Education of her
Son, chiefly in giving a right Tincture to his
After he had been Instructed in the first
But as Mr. Bonnell, through the whole course of his Life, was chiefly remarkable for his great Piety; so it is the History of his Piety the Reader is here chiefly to expect; and tho' I shan't omit any of the Material Paslages of his Life, yet I shall principally enlarge upon his Piety: And that took very early Poseslion of his Heart, and prevented the Suggestions of Satan, and Temptations of the World.
The First Books he read with Pleasure, were those of Devotion; and the Care of his Parents and Instructors was so Blessid by the Grace of God, that he set out betimes in the way to Heaven; prosecuted his Journey with indefatigable Diligence, and persever'd in it to the Last.
And that Mr. Bonnell's Piety was of this early Growth, I shall Mew by inserting here at large, his own Account of it, which I find among his Private Papers.
From the Beginning of my Life (says he) ' I had a great Sense of Piety. Lord! My Cor. Written An
ruptions I had from Nature, I brought them no 1675. in with me into the World; this was thy the Twenty Grace, thy Gift, thy Undeferv'd Favour. Second Year of remember the great Delight I took in Reading Books of Devotion at Ten Years Old, and said then to my Mother, If we were as Hcly as David bow Happy Shou'd me be ? At Eleven Years Old, I us’d to get up from my Bed-fellows on Sunday Mornings, to say the Prayers 'for that Day,out of the Practice of Piery,(which was sent me as a Token from a Friend, and which I was pleas’d with, as an Invaluable Present.) At Twelve I remember I found it Difficult at Waking to begin with God, (as the Practice of Piety directs) and therefore I Writ out the Words which are there propos’d to be said, and put them under my • Pillow, to have them ready at Waking. At 6 Thirteen I had read several Books of Piety and Devotion. In the Perusal of the PraEtice of Piety, I was pleas’d with the Proposal of a Methodical course of Religion, and