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of this island. And that wise and civil Roman, Julius Agricola, who governed once here for Cæsar, preferred the natural wits of Britain, before the laboured studies of the French. Behold now this vast city; a city of refuge, the mansion-house of liberty, encompassed and surrounded with his protection; the shop of war hath not there more anvils and hammers waking, to fashion out the plates and instruments of armed justice in defence of beleagured truth, than there be pens and heads there, sitting by their studious lamps, musing, searching, revolving new notions and ideas, wherewith to present, as with their homage and their fealty, the approaching reformation ; others as fast reading, trying all things, assenting to the force of reason and convincement. What could a man require more from a nation so pliant and so prone to seek after knowledge? What wants there to such a towardly and pregnant soil, but wise and faithful labourers, to make a knowing people, a nation of prophets, of sages and of worthies ? we reckon more than five months yet to harvest; there need not be five weeks had we but eyes to lift up,

the fields are white already.

REFORM.

Methinks I see in my mind a noble and puissant nation rousing herself like a strong man after sleep, and shaking her invincible locks; methinks I see her as an eagle muing her mighty youth,

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and kindling her dazzled eyes at the full mid-day beam: purging and unscaling her long abused sight at the fountain itself of heavenly radiance; while the whole noise of timorous and flocking birds, with those also that love the twilight, flutter about, amazed at what she means, and in their envious gabble would prognosticate a year of sects and schisms.

Error supports custom, custom countenances error: and these two between them would persecute and chase away all truth and solid wisdom out of human life; were it not that God, rather than man, once in many ages calls together the prudent and religious counsels of men, deputed to repress the encroachments, and to work off the inveterate blots and obscurities wrought upon our minds by the subtle insinuating of error and custom; who, with the numerous and vulgar train of their followers, make it their chief design to envy and cry down the industry of free reasoning under the terms of humour and innovation; as if the womb of teeming Truth were to be closed up, if she resume to bring forth aught that sorts not with their unchewed notions and suppositions.t

+ Of prejudice it has been truly said, that it has the singular ability of accommodating itself to all the possible varieties of the human mind. Some passions and vices are but thinly scattered among mankind, and find only here and there a fitness of reception. But prejudice, like the spider, makes every where its home. It has neither taste nor choice of place, and all that it requires is room. There is scarcely a situation, except fire and water, in which a spider will not live. So let the mind be as naked as the walls of an empty

MARRIAGE.

MARRIAGE is a covenant, the very being whereof consists not in a forced cohabitation, and counterfeit performance of duties, but in unfeigned love and peace; and of matrimonial love, no doubt but that was chiefly meant, which by the ancient sages was thus parabled: that Love, if he be not twin born, yet bath a brother wondrous like him, called Anteros; whom while he seeks all about, his chance is to meet with many false and feigning desires, that wander singly up and down in his likeness ; by them in their borrowed garb, Love, though not wholly blind, as poets wrong him, yet having but one eye, as being born an archer aiming, and that eye not the quickest in this dark region here below, which is not Love's proper sphere, partly out of the simplicity and credulity which is native to him, often deceived, embraces and consorts him with these obvious and suborned striplings, as if they were his mother's own sons; for so he thinks them, while they subtilly keep themselves most

and forsaken tenement, gloomy as a dungeon, or ornamented with the richest abilities of thinking ; let it be hot, cold, dark or light, lonely or inhabited, still prejudice, if undisturbed, will fill it with cobwebs, and live like the spider, where there seems nothing to live on. If the ope prepares her food by poisoning it to her palate and her use, the other does the same; and as several of our passions are strongly characterised by the animal world, prejudice may be denoninated the spider of the mind.

on his blind side. But after a while, as his manner is, when soaring up into the high tower of his apogæum, above the shadow of the earth, he darts out the direct rays of his then most piercing eyesight upon the impostures, and trim disguises, that were used with him, and discerns that this is not his genuine brother as he imagined : he has no longer the power to hold fellowship with such a personated mate; for straight his arrows lose their golden heads, and shed their purple feathers, his silken braids untwine, and slip their knots, and that original and fiery virtue given him by fate, all on a sudden goes out, and leaves him undeified and despoiled of all his force; till finding Anteros at last, he kindles and repairs the almost faded ammunition of his deity by the reflection of a coequal and homogeneal fire. This is a deep and serious verity, shewing us that love in marriage cannot live nor subsist unless it be mutual; and where love cannot be, there can be left of wedlock nothing but the empty husk of an outside matrimony, as undelightful and unpleasing to God as any other kind of hypocrisy.

GOVERNMENT.

I CANNOT better liken the state and person of a king than to that mighty Nazarite, Samson ; who being disciplined from his birth in the precepts and practice of temperance and sobriety, without

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the strong drink of injurious and excessive desires, grows up to a noble strength and perfection with those his illustrious and sunny locks and laws, waving and curling about his godlike shoulders. And while he keeps them about him undiminished and unshorn, he may with the jawbone of an ass, that is, with the word of his meanest officer, suppress

and put to confusion thousands of those that rise against his just power.*

THE POET'S MORNING.

My morning haunts are, where they should be, at home; not sleeping, or concocting the surfeits of an irregular feast, but up and stirring; in winter, often ere the sound of any bell awake men to

Dr. Symmons, in his Life of Milton, says,-Abstinence in diet was one of Milton's favourite virtues ; which he practised invariably through life, and availed himself of every opportunity to recommend in his writings.

() madness! to think use of strongest wines
And strongest drinks our chief support of health,
When God, with these forbidden, made choice to rear
His mighty champion, strong above compare,
Whose drink was only from the liquid brook.

Samson Agonistes. When the Angel of the Lord appeared unto the wife of Manoah, and promised that she who was now childless, should bear a son,' he gave to her this strong injunction, . Now therefore beware, I pray thee, drink not wine, por

And when Manoah besought the heavenly messenger that he would vouchsafe to shew him “ how to

strong drink.”

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