Obrazy na stronie
[ocr errors]

his resolution, till his faculties were harassed and move, fancied himself betrayed to his enemies, and his thoughts confused; then returned to the apart again started up with horror and indignation. ment where his presence was expected, with lan It was now day; and fear was so strongly im. guid eyes and clouded countenance, and spread the pressed on his mind, that he could sleep no more. infection of uneasiness over the whole assembly. He rose, but his thoughts were filled with the deluge He observed their depression, and was offended, || and invasion; nor was he able to disengage his for he found his vexation increased by those whom attention, or mingle with vacancy and ease in any he expected to dissipate and relieve it. He re | amusement. At length his perturbation gave way tired again to bis private chamber, and sought for to reason, and he resolved no longer to be harassed consolation in his own mind: one thought Aowed | by visionary miseries; but before this resol in upon another; a long succession of images could be completed, half the day had elapsed: he seized his attention; the moments crept imper- || felt a new conviction of the uncertainty of human ceptibly away through the gloom of pensiveness, schemes, and could not forbear to bewail the weaktill having recovered his tranquillity, he lifted up ness of that being, whose quiet was to be interhis head and saw the lake brightened by the set- | rupted by vapours of the fancy. Having been first ting sun. “Such," said Seged, sighing, “is the disturbed by a dream, he afterwards grieved that a longest day of human existence; before we have dream could disturb him. He at last discovered learned to use it, we find it at an end!”

that his terrors and grief were equally vain; and The regret which he felt for the loss of so great that to lose the present in lamenting the past, was a part of his first day, took from him all disposi voluntarily to protract a melancholy vision. The tion to enjoy the evening; and, after having endea third day was now declining, and Seged again revoured, for the sake of his attendants, to force an solved to be happy on the morrow. air of gaiety, and excite that mirth which he could On the fourth morning Seged rose early, renot share, he resolved to refer his hopes to the next freshed with sleep, vigorous with health, and eager morning, and lay down to partake with the slaves with expectation. He entered the garden, attended of labour and poverty the blessing of sleep.

by the princes and ladies of his court; and seeing He rose early the second morning, and resolved nothing about him but airy cheerfulness, began to now to be happy. He therefore fixed upon the gate say to his heart, “ This day shall be a day of pleaof the palace an edict, importing, that whoever, sure.” The sun played upon the water, the birds during nine days, should appear in the presence warbled in the groves, and the gales quivered of the king with dejected countenance, or utter among the branches. He roved from walk to walk any expression of discontent or sorrow, should be as chance directed him; and sometimes listened to driven for ever from the palace of Dambea.

the songs, sometimes mingled with the dancers, This edict was immediately made known in every sometimes let loose his imagination in flights of chamber of the court and bower of the gardens. merrimnent, and sometimes uttered grave reflecMirth was frighted away; and they who were be tions and sententious maxims, and feasted on the fore dancing in the lawns, or singing in the shades, admiration with which they were received. were at once engaged in the care of regulating their Thus the day rolled on without any accident of looks, that Seged might find his will punctually || vexation or intrusion of melancholy thoughts. All obeyed, and see none among them liable to banish- | that beheld him caught gladness from his looks, ment.

and the sight of happiness conferred by himself Seged now met every face settled in a smile; but filled his heart with satisfaction ; but having passed a smile that betrayed solicitude, timidity, and con- | three hours in this harmless luxury, he was alarmstraint. He accosted his favourites with familiarity ed on a sudden by a universal scream among the and softness; but they durst not speak without women, and turning back, saw the whole assembly premeditation, lest they should be convicted of dis Aying in confusion. A young crocodile had risen content or sorrow. He proposed diversions, to out of the lake, and was ranging the garden in which no objection was made because objection wantonness or hunger. Seged beheld him with would have implied uneasiness; but they were re- || indignation, as a disturber of his felicity, and garded with indifference by the courtiers, who had chased him back into the lake; but could not perno other desire than to signalise themselves by | suade his retinue to stay, or free their hearts from clamorous exultation. He offered various topics || the terror which had seized upon them. The prinof conversation, but obtained only forced jests and || cesses enclosed themselves in the palace, and could laborious laughter; and after many attempts to | yet scarcely believe themselves in safety. Every animate his train to confidence and alacrity, was attention was fixed upon the late danger and escape, obliged to confess to himself the impotence of com- || and no mind was any longer at leisure for gay mand, and resign another day to grief and disap sallies or careless prattle. pointment.

Seged had now no other employment than to He at last relieved his companions from their contemplate the innumerable casualties which lie terrors, and shut himself up in his chiamber to || in ambush on every side to intercept the happiness ascertain, by different measures, the felicity of the l of man, and break in upon the hour of delight and succeeding days. At length he threw himself on tranquillity. He had, however, the consolation of the bed, and closed his eyes; but imagined, in his thinking, ihat he had not been now disappointed sleep, that his palace and gardens were over by his own fault; and that the accident which had whelmed by an inundation, and waked with all blasted the hopes of the day, might easily be prethe terrors of a man struggling in the water. He vented by future caution. composed himself again to rest, but was affrighted | That he might provide for the pleasure of the by an imaginary irruption into his kingdom; and next morning, he resolved to repeal his penal striving, as is usual in dreams, without ability, to | edict, since he had already found that discontent and melancholy were not to be frighted away by | secret of obtaining an interval of felicity. But as the threats of authority, and that pleasure would he was roving in this careless assembly with equal only reside where she was exempted from control. carelessness, he overheard one of his courtiers in He therefore invited all the companions of his re- || a close arbour murmuring alone : “ What merit treat to unbounded pleasantry, by proposing prizes has Seged above us, that we should thus fear and for those who should, on the following day, dis obey him,-a man, whom, whatever he may have tinguish themselves by any festive performances; formerly performed, his luxury now shews to have the tables of the antechamber were covered with the same weakness with ourselves ?” This charge gold and pearls, and robes and garlands, decreed affected him the more as it was uttered by one the rewards of those who could refine elegance or whom he had always observed among the most heighten pleasure.

abject of his flatterers. At first his indignation At this display of riches every eye immediately | prompted him to severity; but reflecting that what sparkled, and every tongue was busied in celebrat was spoken without intention to be heard was to ing the bounty and magnificence of the emperor. be considered as only thought, and was perhaps But when Seged entered, in hopes of uncommon but the sudden burst of casual and temporary vexentertainment from universal emulation, he found ation, he invented some decent pretence to send that any passion too strongly agitated puts an end him away, that his retreat might not be tainted to that tranquillity which is necessary to mirth, and with the breath of envy; and after the struggle of that the mind that is to be moved by the gentle | deliberation was past, and all desire of revenge utventilations of gaiety must be first smoothed by a || terly suppressed, passed the evening not only with total calm. Whatever we ardently wish to gain, 1 tranquillity, but triumph, though none but him we must in the same degree be afraid to lose, and I was conscious of the victory. fear and pleasure cannot dwell together.

The remembrance of this clemency cheered the All was now care and solicitude. Nothing was | beginning of the seventh day, and nothing hapdone or spoken but with so visible an endeavour || pened to disturb the pleasure of Seged, till looking at perfection as always failed to delight, though it on the tree that shaded him, he recollected that sometimes forced admiration; and Seged could | under a tree of the same kind he had passed the not but observe with sorrow that his prizes had night after his defeat in the kingdom of Goiama. more influence than himself. As the evening ap- || The reflection on his loss, his dishonour, and the proached, the contest grew more earnest, and those | miseries which his subjects suffered from the inwho were forced to allow themselves excelled be- || vader, filled him with sadness. At last he shook gan to discover the malignity of defeat, first by | off the weight of sorrow, and began to solace himangry glances, and at last by contemptuous mur self with his usual pleasures, when his tranquillity murs. Seged likewise shared the anxiety of the was again disturbed by jealousies which the late day; for considering himself as obliged to distri contest for the prizes had produced, and which, bute with exact justice the prizes which had been | having in vain tried to pacify them by persuasion, so zealously sought, he durst never remit his at he was forced to silence by command. tention, but passed his time upon the rack of doubt On the eighth morning Seged was awakened in balancing different kinds of merit, and adjusting early by an unusual hurry in the apartments; and the claims of all the competitors.

inquiring the cause, was told that the princess At last, knowing that no exactness could satisfy Balkis was seized with sickness. He rose, and those whose hopes he should disappoint, and think- ll calling the physicians, found that they had little ing that on a day set apart for happiness, it would hope of her recovery. Here was an end of jollity : be cruel to oppress any heart with sorrow, he de all his thoughts were now upon his daughter, whose clared that all bad pleased him alike, and dismissed eyes he closed on the tenth day. all with presents of equal value.

Such were the days which Seged of Ethiopia had Seged soon saw that his caution had not been appropriated to a short respiration from the fatigues able to avoid offence. They who had believed of war and the cares of government. This narrathemselves secure of the highest prizes were not | tive he has bequeathed to future generations, that pleased to be levelled with the crowd; and though, || no man hereafter may presume to say, “This day by the liberality of the king, they received more || shall be a day of happiness." than his promise had entitled them to expect, they

JOHNSON. departed unsatisfied, because they were honoured with no distinction, and wanted an opportunity to triumph in the mortification of their opponents. FABLES FROM THE LATIN. “ Behold here,” said Seged, “ the condition of him who places his happiness in the happiness of

GUIDO, THE PERFECT SERVANT. others.” He then retired to meditate ; and while There was once a great emperor of Rome named the courtiers were repining at his distributions,

Valerius, who would that every man, according to saw the fifth sun go down in discontent. The next dawn renewed his resolution to be

his wishes, should serve him; so he commanded happy. But having learned how little he could

that whosoever should strike three times on the effect by settled schemes or preparatory measures, gate of his palace, should be admitted to do him he thought it best to give up one day entirely to service. In the emperor's kingdom was also a chance, and left every one to please and be pleased his own way.

poor man named Guido, who, when he heard of This relaxation of regularity diffused a general

his lord's commands, thus spake with himself: complaisance through the whole court, and the "Now I am a poor man, and lowly born ; is it emperor imagined that he had at last found the || not better to live and serve, than to starve and

be free?” So he went to the king's gate, and ture, which he knew not of before. “Go, thereknocked three knocks; and lo, it was opened to fore,” said Valerius, “ through my country, and bim, according as it had been said; and he was invite my friends to a banquet at the festival of brought before the emperor.

Christmas now at hand;" and Guido bowed assent, “What seek you, friend ?” asked Valerius, as and departed on his way. Guido bowed before him.

But Guido did not execute his lord's commands, "To serve my king," was Guido's reply.

-going not unto his friends, but unto his enemies. “What service can you perform for me?" re So that when the emperor descended into his banjoined the emperor.

quet-hall, his heart was troubled; for his enemies “Six services can I perform, o king: as your || sat round his table, and there was not a friend body-guard, I can prepare your bed and your food, || among them. So he called Guido, and spake anand attend your chamber. I can sleep when others grily to him. watch, and watch while others sleep. As your cup How, sir ! didst thou not tell me that thou bearer, I can drink good wine, and tell whether it be knewest whom to invite to my banquet ?" 80 or not. I can summon the guests to my mas And Guido said, “ Of a surety, my lord.” ter's banquet, to his great honour and berefit. I “Did not I bid thee invite my friends ? and how, can kindle a fire which shall warm all that seek || then, hast thou summoned all mine enemies?” it, and yet not smoke. And I can shew the way And Guido said, “ May thy servant speak ?" to the Holy Land, to the health of such as shall go | So the emperor said, "Speak on.” thither.”

And the servant said, “My lord, there is no "By my truth," rejoined the emperor, “ these season or time that thy friends may not visit thee, are great things that thou dost promise. See that and be received with pleasure and honour; but it thou do them. Each for one year. Serve me first | is not so with thine enemies. Then I said to myas my body-guard.”

self, •Conciliation and kindness would go far to Guido was content to obey the emperor; and he convert enemies into friends.'” prepared to perform his duties as his body-guard. | Now it turned out as Guido hoped ; for ere the Every night he made ready the emperor's bed, | feast was ended, the king and his enemies were and prepared his apparel. Every night lie lay | reconciled to each other, and became friends even before the emperor's chamber-door, armed at all || unto the end of their days. So the emperor called points; whilst by his side watched a faithful dog Guido, and said, “ With God's blessing, thy design to warn him of the approach of danger. In every | has prospered. Come now, make for my reconthing did he minister so faithfully to his lord, that | ciled eneinies and me a fire that shall burn without the emperor was well pleased with him, and, after |smoke." his first year, made him seneschal of his castle and || And Guido answered, “ It shall be done as thou steward of his household. Then did Guido com- || hast required, o king." mence his labours in his second office. During So he sent and gathered much green wood, and the entire summer he gathered large stores of dried it in the sun until it was quite dry, and every thing needful into the castle, and collected | therewith made a fire that did cast out much heat, much provision at little cost, by carefully watching and yet did not smoke. So that the emperor and his opportunities. Anon came on the winter, and his friends rejoiced greatly therein. And so it was when those who had slept during the times of when the emperor saw how well Guido had perplenty began to labour and lay up in their store- || formed his five ministries, he bade him execute houses, Guido remained at ease, and completed his his sixth service --- that he might attain to great second year's service with credit to himself. honour in his kingdom.

And now the third year of Guido's service came " My lord,” said Guido, " he that would know on; and the emperor called for his chief butler, || the way to the Holy Land, must follow me to the and said, “ Mix in a cup good wine, must, and || sea-shore." vinegar, and give it to Guido to drink; that we So a proclamation went forth from the king to may know how he doth taste good drink, and what that effect; and great multitudes of men and wohe knoweth of its qualities.”

men flocked to the sea-shore after Guido. When So the butler did as he was ordered, and gave the the people were come, Guido said, “ My friends, cup to Guido, who, when he had tasted of it, said, do ye see in the ocean the things that I see ?" Of a truth it was good, it is good, and it will be And the people answered, “We know not." good.” And when the emperor asked him how | “See ye in the midst of the waves a huge rock ?" these things could be, he said, “ The vinegar was | And the people answered, “ It is even so. Why good, the old wine is good, and the must will be ask you this of us?" good when it is older.” So the emperor saw that | “Know ye all,” replied Guido, “ that on that he had answered rightly and discreetly of the mix- | rock liveth a bird, that 'sitteth continually on her nest, in which are seven eggs. While she so sit- | devil hasteth to defile our hearts; but the blood of teth, behold the sea is calm, and men may pass to the Lamb which was slain for us, even our Saviour, and fro over the wide waters in safety. But when

will ward off the attack of our enemy, so long as she doth quit her nest, the winds blow and the we are sprinkled therewith.” waves rise, and many perish on the waters.”

Then said the people, “How shall we know when this bird quitteth her nest ?"

THE BISHOP OF EXETER ON THE And Guido answered, “She sitteth always, un

SERVICES OF THE CHURCH. less a sudden emergency happen; and then when The churchwardens of Falmouth having complained she is away, there cometh another bird, great and to the Bishop of Exeter of the restoration of several strong, that defileth her nest and breaketh her obsolete rubrics by the rector, his lordship replied

in the following excellent letter : seven eggs, which, when the first bird seeth, she flieth away, and the winds and storms arise ; then

Bishopstowe, Torquay, June 30, 1843.

GentLEMEN,- I yesterday received a packet, must the shipman remain in port."

containiny a letter from you, a copy of resolutions Then said the people, “ Master, how may we

passed at a meeting convened by you, and a meprevent these things, and defend the bird and her

morial numerously signed by persons calling themnest from her enemy?”.

selves “the congregation of the parish church of And Guido said, “ The enemy liateth the blood

Falmouth,” which memorial states, that " within

the last twelve months various alterations have of the lamb, and cannot come where that is.

been introduced in the mode of celebrating service Sprinkle, therefore, the inside and outside of the

in their church, which, in their opinion, in a great nest with this blood; and so long as one drop re measure, destroy the beautiful simplicity and spi. maineth, the friendly bird will sit in peace, and ritual character of the reformed religion, and asthe waves will not rage and swell, and there shall

similate the ceremonies of our Church to those of be safety on the waters of the sea.”

the Romish hierarchy.” The memorialists there

fore pray that I will “ examine into those recent And the people did as Guido said. They took

changes, and issue such directions as shall induce the blood of a lamb, and sprinkled the nest and the rector to restore the services to what they were the rock therewith. Then passed the emperor and before he commenced his ministry among them." all his people to the Holy Land, and returned in

The memorial states no particulars of the changes peace and safety. And the emperor did as he had

| into which it prays me to examine. But the reso

lutions enumerate certain matters, designating them promised unto Guido, and rewarded the perfect || as “ grievances," into which I proceed, as requestservant with great riches, promoting him to high ed, “ to examine." honour among the people.

They are as follows:

1. “The chanting of 'Amen,'-of the · Psalter,' The Moral.

of the “Creeds.'' “My friends," saith the wise man, “the great ||

2. “ The repeated bowings to the altar."

3. “The display of sacramental plate thereon." emperor is our Father in heaven; the three blows

Of the first of these things, the chanting, one on his gate are prayer, self-denial, charity; by of the resolutions states, that it “ has rendered the these three any one may become his faithful ser Psalter and the Creeds almost unintelligible to the vant. Guido is a poor Christian, by baptism made

congregation,” that is, to the memorialists, "and his servant. His first service is, to serve his God,

especially to the poorer and juvenile members

thereof." and to prepare the heart for virtue. His second

Now this is to me, I frankly avow, very surprisduty is to watch ; ' for he knoweth not the day ing. Psalms are spiritual songs, and therefore it nor the hour when the Son of man cometh.' His surely is fit that they be sung, or chanted, which I third task is, to taste of repentance, which was need not say is only a simpler mode of singing, and good to the saints who are departed, is good to

in which even those who have no skill in music

may join. The Psalm which precedes the rest in such of us as it brings to salvation, and will be

morning prayer commences, as the memorialists good to all in the last day. The fourth duty is, to

well know, with the words, “O come let us sing invite Christ's enemies to be his friends, and to unto the Lord.” The Apostle Paul had no apprecome to the banquet of his love; for he came hension that singing made the matter sung uninnot to call the righteous, but sinners to repent. |

telligible ; for after saying to the Colossians, “ Let

the word of Christ dwell in you richly in all wisance. The fire that burneth without smoke, is

dom," he immediately adds, as a mode of effecting the fire of charity, which burneth free of all ill this, “teaching and admonishing one another in will and bad feeling. The way to the Holy Land, || psalms and hymns and spiritual songs, singing with is our course heavenward. We are to sail over grace in your hearts to the Lord.” Accordingly, our sea, the world; in the midst of which standeth

the Church of Christ, in the earliest and purest

ages, was in the habit of doing what the Apostle our rock, even our heart, on which the holy bird

enjoined; the singing of psalms, especially the of God's Spirit resteth. The seven eggs are the Psalms of David and the other inspired psalmists, gifts of the Spirit. When the Spirit leaves us, the was always a large portion of the worship of God.

of the Craneated bowcramental planhanting,

Our own Church at the Reformation followed the even the death of the cross. Wherefore God hath course presented in Holy Scripture, and pursued highly exalted Him, and given Him a name which by the primitive Church, without being afraid of is above every name; that at the name of Jesus doing this because it was also done at Rome. Nor every knee shall bow, of things in heaven, and did the apprehension of thus making “this part of things in earth, and things under the earth.” Now, the service unintelligible" ever occur to them. if such be the “bowings" of which the memorialists For in prefixing the rubrical directions for the complain, as destroying the beautiful simplicity and performance of this part, they expressly say, “these spiritual character of the reformed religion, and shall be said or sung.” Now what Cranmer, Ridley, | assimilating our services to those of Rome, I, as and other martyred fathers of the Reformation who | their Bishop, am bound to deplore, and to endeacomposed our Liturgy, permitted in plain terms, your to remove, their unhappy blindness. and sanctioned by their practice, I can hardly be Again, “the bowings to the altar" may be the expected to forbid, as rendering the service “un bowings recommended in the seventh canon of the intelligible.” If, indeed, the congregation at Fal. Synod of 1640, which says that, “whereas the mouth, differing herein from the congregations in church is the house of God, dedicated to His holy other towns not superior to it in intellectual ad worship, and therefore ought to mind us both of the vancement or general refinement, happens, from greatness and goodness of his divine Majesty; cerwhatever cause, to dislike chanting, and will be tain it is that the acknowledgment thereof, not only content to ask their rector to gratify them by dis inwardly in our hearts, but also outwardly in our continuing it, and shall do this in a tone of ordi bodies, must needs be pious in itself, profitable nary courtesy and kindness, I cannot doubt that unto us, and edifying unto others. We therefore he will most readily comply. If he will not (which think it very meet and behoveful, and heartily I do not anticipate as possible), they may then | commend it to all good and well-affected people, very reasonably call on me to interpose.

members of this Church, that they be ready to tenUnder this head of “Chanting," I had almost || der unto the Lord the said acknowledgment, by forgotten to notice “Creeds” (I do not forget, but | doing reverence and obeisance, both at their com. absolutely refuse to notice the “ Amen'). Now | ing in and going out of the said churches, accordthe creeds are already fully understood, or sup ing to the most ancient custom of the primitive posed to be understood, by those who recite them, Il Church at the present time, and of this Church also whether they be said or sung. The chanting of for many years of the reign of Queen Elizabeth. creeds, therefore, cannot reasonably be an objec The reviving, therefore, of this ancient and laudtion as rendering that part of the service unin able custom we heartily commend to the serious telligible." I turn to other matters.

consideration of all people; not with any intention 2. The next is the frequent “bowings to the to exhibit any religious worship to the communionaltar." These bowings may or may not be proper; table, the east, or the church, or any thing therein and you give me no intimation whatever which contained, in so doing, but only for the advancemay assist me in discovering in which description ment of God's majesty, and to give Him alone that they are to be placed.

honour and glory that is due unto Him, and no They may be merely those bowings which are otherwise.” commanded by the 18th Canon of 1603, which Now, if “the bowings to the altar," enumerated command, with the annexed reason, I here subjoin | among your “grievances" be of this kind, I must for the edification of yourselves and of the other | decline issuing any directions to the rector which memorialists.

|| may induce him to discontinue them. I do not un“ When in time of Divine service the Lord Jesus derstand that he attempts to impose them as duties shall be mentioned, due and lowly reverence shall || on his people. He performs them, it seems, himbe done by all persons present, as it hath been ac- || self, thereby exercising his Christian liberty, with customed; testifying by these outward ceremonies || which I have no right nor inclination to interfere. and gestures their inward humility, Christian reso- || I do not, indeed, practise this obeisance myself lution, and our acknowledgment that the Lord | “ in coming in and going out of the church;" but I Jesus Christ, the true and eternal Son of God, is | respect the freedom of others, and I from my heart the only Saviour of the world ; in whom alone all || subscribe to the wise and charitable language with the mercies, graces, and promises of God to man- || which the canon last cited by me concludes-"in kind for this life and the life to come, are fully and the practice or omission of this rite, we desire that wholly comprised."

the rule of charity prescribed by the apostle may That the reverence here enjoined was indeed be observed—which is, that they which use this accustomed, is manifest from the 52d of the in- || rite despise not thein which use it not; and that junctions of Queen Elizabeth in the first year of they who use it not condemn not those who use it." her reign (which injunctions were subsequently I have thus noticed the only " bowing to the altar'' recognised in an Act of Parliament). “That when of which I have ever heard as practised by any soever the name of Jesus shall be in any lesson, || minister or member of our Church; of these, one sermon, or otherwise in the church pronounced, || it is the duty of your rector to perform, the other due reverence be made of all persons young and || is recommended to him by one of the canons. If old, with lowliness of courtesy as thereunto doth he practise any others, and if you offer any proof necessarily belong, and hereunto hath been accus that they are of an improper character, I shall give tomed.

to that proof my best attention. But, in the abNeed I remind you of a higher authority than sence of all testimony, and even of direct allegakings or queens, acts of parliament, or canons of || tion, that your rector's " bowings” are thus imsynods—the hallowed usage of even the Word of || proper, I must decline calling on him even to exGod itself?" He became obedient unto death, Il plain them.

« PoprzedniaDalej »