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rest of the time, in endeavouring to make them ashamed of what they had done. His behaviour and discourse affected them so much, that, at his farther intreaty, they promised to forbear all acts of hostility, while he continued in the country. And so much respected was he among them, that whoever was in fear of his enemy, used to resort where Mr Gilpin was, esteeming his presence the best protection.
One Sunday morning coming to a church, before the people were assembled, he observed hanging up a man's glove ; and being informed by the sexton, that it was meant as a challenge to any one that should take it down; upon the sexton refusing, he took it down himself, and put in his breast. In his sermon he took this occasion to rebuke them for these inhuman challenges. “I hear, (says “ he,) that one among you hath hanged up a glove even « in this sacred place, threatening to fight any one who “ takes it down; see here, I have taken it down :" And holding it out to the congregation, he shewed how unsuitable such practices were to Christianity, and pressed them by the most affectionate persuasives to mutual love. The disinterested pains he thus took among these barbarous people, added to his good offices and charities to them, (which were so liberal, that though he set out on this journey with ten pounds in his purse, yet he returned twenty nobles in debt, which he always paid in a fortnight,) drew from them the sincerest expressions of gratitude. Os this we have one pregnant instance. By the carelessness of a servant, his horses were one day stolen. The news was quickly propagated, and every one expressed the highest indignation at it. The thief, however, was rejoicing over his prize, when, by the report of the country, he found whose horses he had taken. Terrified at what he had done, he instantly came trembling back, confessed the fact, returned the horses, and declared he believed the devil would have seized him directly, had he carried them off when he knew they belonged to Mr Gilpin.
Such actions as these are not, it is confessed, the brilliant and striking part of his historical memoirs ; but they certainly are not the least useful. Persons in high life can be examples only to few, in comparison of those who move in a lower sphere, and fill an inferior station ; and among these, there is no character so amiable, nor which spreads its influence so extensively, as that of a worthy parish-priest. Such, undeniably, was Mr Gilpin’s, and that to such a degree too, as deserves to be distinguished
by particular notice to the present age, as much as he was distinguished in his own, when he merited and obtained the desirable titles of the FATHER OF THE Poor, and THE APOSTLE OF THE NORTH. But this character was not fully completed in him, by the particulars hitherto mentioned, extraordinary as they are. There is still another, which alone would have been sufficient to fill up the whole sphere of an ordinary activity, and which, therefore, neither justice to him, nor to the Reader, will suffer to be omitted.
We have already mentioned the first method taken by our Author, as being the most pressing and urgent to supply the want of able preachers. Q. Elizabeth was very sensible of this scarcity, and, among other ways of providing a relief, recommended to her council the founding seminaries of good learning. No good work ever went forward, which Mr Gilpin did not promote as far as he was able. In this he joined to the utmost of his abilities, and, as was commonly indeed thought, beyond them. His manner of living was the most affluent and generous ; his hospitality made daily a great demand upon him, and his bounty and charities a much larger. His acquaintance, therefore, could not but wonder to find him, amidst such great expences, entertain the design of building and endowing a grammar-school : A design, however, which his very exact economy soon enabled him to accomplish, though the expence of it amounted to upwards of five hundred pounds. The effects of this endowment were very quickly seen. His school was no sooner opened than it began to flourish, and to afford the agreeable prospect of a succeeding generation, rising above the ignorance and errors of their forefathers. That such might be its effects, no care on his part was wanting : He not only placed able masters in his school, whom he procured from Oxford, but himself, likewise, constantly inspected it : and, that encouragement might quicken the application of his boys, he always took particular notice of the most forward; he would call them his own scholars, and would send for them into his study, and there instruct them himself. There was so great a resort of young people to this school, that in a little time the town was not able to accommodate them. Seeing this, he fitted up a part of his own house for that purpose, where he seldom had fewer than twenty or thirty children ; some were sons of distinction, whom he boarded at easy rates : But the greater part were poor children, who could not so easily get themselves boarded in the town, and whom he not only educated, but clothed and maintained : He was at the expence, likewise, of boarding many others in town.
ns of per* It was in this manner that he first picked up, in his road to Oxford, the famous Hugh Broughton, whom he sent to Cambridge and supported there; among other studies applying himself principally to the Hebrew tongue, he became by far the most eminent person in his time, he not only fpoke it Auently himself, but taught several others w do the same. See Dr Lightfoot's article in Biograpbia Britannica. But he acted a inost base and ungrateful part to his Benefactor. Insinuating himself into the bishop of Durham's [Barnes] favour, he found means to prejudice him against Mr Gilpin, in the view of supplanting him at Houghton. But the bishop was reconciled, as bas been mentioned in the text, and promised that his enemies should not hurt him, meaning particularly Broughcon; who, thereupon left Durham, and went to feck his fortune elsewhere. Brough, ton, though indeed a scholar, was one of the vaineft men of his time.
One method used by him to fill his school was a little singular. Whenever he met a poor boy upon the road, he would make trial of his capacity by a few questions, and if he found it such as pleased him, he would provide for his education *. Thus he used to bring several every year from the different parts where he preached, particuJarly Reads-dale and Tine-dale. Nor did his care end here; from his school he sent several to the universities, where he maintained them wholly at his own expence ; for that end he yearly set apart sixty pounds ; this sum he always laid out, often more: His common allowance to each scholar was about ten pounds a-year, which, for a sober youth, was at that time a very sufficient maintenance; so that he never maintained fewer than six. To others, who were in circumstances to do something for themselves, he would give the farther assistance they needed. By which means he induced many parents to allow their children a liberal education, who otherwise would not have done it. Our author's care of them went still farther. He considered himself as their proper guardian, and seemed to think himself bound to the public for their usefulness. With this view he held a punctual correspondence with their tutors ; and made the youths themselves frequently write to him ; so solicitous, indeed, was he about them, that once every year he generally made a journey to the universities to inspect their behaviour. Nor was this uncommon care unrewarded ; few of his scholars miscarried, many of them, says Carleton, bishop of Chichester, (who was one himself) became great ornaments to the church, and very exemplary instances of piety.
The settlement of this school was the last business of a public nature, in which he was engaged. It answered his expectation so well, that when he grew old it became his chief concern. His infirmities obliged him now to relax a little from those very great fatigues, he had undergone abroad, and to draw his engagements nearer home. His school, situated near his house, afforded him when most infirm an employment, and he could hardly die in peace till he had settled it to his mind. What he had principally at heart, was to compose for it a set of good statutes, to provide it a better endowment, and fix all by a charter. As to the statutes, he was daily employed in improving his first draught. With regard to a better endowment, as it was not in his power to do any thing more himself, he applied to a neighbouring gentleman, John Heath, Esq. of Kepier, with whom he had lived many years in great intimacy, and prevailed with him to double the original endowment: This, with some other contributions, procured by him, raised the revenues an. swerable to his wishes. The last thing was to obtain a charter. For this, he applied to his friend, the earl of Bedford, who easily procured it of the queen in March, 1571.
Towards the latter part of his life, Mr Gilpin went through his duty with great difficulty; his health was much impaired; the extreme fatigue, he had during so many years undergone, had now quite broke his constitution, and while he was thus struggling with these difficulties, there happened an affair, which entirely destroyed his health. As he was crossing the market-place at Durham, an ox ran at him, and threw him down with such violence, that it was imagined he had received his death's wound. He lay long confined; and though he got abroad again, he never recovered even the little strength he had before, and continued lame as long as he lived. But sickness was not the only distress, which the declining years of this excellent man had to struggle with. As age and infirmity began to lessen that weight and influ. ence he once had, the malice and opposition of his enemies of course prevailed more. He was charged by some with maintaining the unlawfulness of marriage in the clergy; others taxed him with hypocrisy ; and a third, with refusing to pay his just debts : While chancellor Barnes laid aside all decency in oppressing him. load of calumny, ingratitude, and ill usage, may justly be supposed to lie heavy upon him, already sinking under a
weight of years. Yet he bore it with great fortitude, strengthening himself with such consolations, as a Christian hath in reserve for all extremities. His resignation, however, was not long exercised.
About the beginning of February, 1683, he found himself so very weak, that he was sensible his end must be drawing near. He told his friends his apprehensions; and spoke of his death with the most happy composure. He was soon after confined to his chamber; but his senses continued perfect to the last. A few days before his death, he ordered his friends, acquaintance, and dependants to be called ; and being raised in his bed, he made several most pathetic discourses ; first, to the poor, next to his 'scholars, and then to his servants; after which, sending for several persons, who had hitherto made no good use of his advice, he pressed it now again, in hopes that his dying words might prove more effectual : His speech began to faulter, before he finished these last exhortations. The remaining hours of his life he spent in prayer, and in broken converse with some select friends; mentioning often the consolations of the gospel, declaring they were the only true ones, and that nothing else would bring a man peace at the last. He died upon the fourth of March, 1583, in the sixty-sixth year of his age, and was interred in his own church.
As to his character. His person was tall and slender, in the ornament of which he was at no pains. He had a particular aversion to the fopperies of dress. In his diet he was very temperate, rather abstemious. His parts were very good; his imagination, memory, and judgment, were lively, retentive, and solid. His acquirements were as considerable: By an unwearied application he had amassed a great store of knowledge; and was ignorant of no part of learning at that time in esteem : In languages, history, and divinity, he particularly excelled. He read poetry with a good taste ; and was himself no mean poet: But he laid out little time in the pursuit of any study foreign to his profession. His temper was naturally warm ; and in his youth there are instances of his giving way to passion ; but in time, by grace, he got more command of himself, and at length was enabled to subdue that infirmity, His disposition was serious, yet among his particular friends he was commonly cheerful, sometimes facetious. His general behaviour was very affable ; his severity had no object but himself; to others he was humble, candid, and indulgent. Extravagance with him was another word for