« FöregåendeFortsätt »
day by a Roman Prætor to see the tomb of Cæsar. Himself thus describes the corpse, "It looked of a blue mould, the bone of the nose laid bare, the flesh of the nether lip quite fallen off, his mouth full of worms, and in his eye pit a hungry toad feasting upon the remnant portion of flesh and moisture and so he dwelt in his house of dark
See Tucker's Light of Nature, vol. v. chap. 9, where there is an interesting enquiry upon the distinction between the love of excelling and the love of excellence: where, with his usual ingenuity, he examines the question.
"Nevertheless it will probably be asked, would I then extinguish every spark of vanity in the world? every thirst of fame, of splendour, of magnificence, of show? every desire of excelling or distinguishing one's self above the common herd? what must become of the public services, of sciences, arts, commerce, manufactures? the business of life must stagnate. Nobody would spend his youth in fatigues and dangers to qualify himself for a general or an admiral. Nobody would study, and toil, and struggle, and roar out liberty to be a minister."
If Tucker is right, and he generally is right, in his opinions, the love of excelling, although the common motive of action does not influence the noblest minds; is only a temporary motive, and generates bad passion: but the love of excellence is a powerful motive: is a permanent motive, and generates good feeling: is always ready to forward those abilities which overpower its own. If Tucker's reasoning is pot satisfactory, let him consider the words of Lord Bacon.
"We enter into a desire of knowledge sometimes from a natural curiosity and inquisitive appetite; sometimes to entertain our minds with variety and delight; sometimes for ornament and reputation; sometimes to enable us to victory of wit and contradiction, and most times for lucre and profession; and seldom sincerely to give a true account of our gift of reason, for the benefit and use of man:-as if there
Virtue hath not half so much trouble in it, it sleeps quietly without startings and affrighting fancies, it looks cheerfully, smiles with much serenity, and though it laughs not often, yet it is ever delightful in the apprehensions of some faculty: it fears no man, nor no thing, nor is it
were sought in knowledge a couch whereupon to rest a searching and restless spirit; or a terrace for a wandering and variable mind to walk up and down, with a fair prospect; or a tower of state for a proud mind to raise itself upon; or a fort or commanding ground for strife and contention; or a shop for profit or sale; and not a rich storehouse for the glory of the Creator and the relief of man's estate."
"For our undertaking, we judge it of such a nature, that it were highly unworthy to pollute it with any degree of ambition or affectation; as it is an unavoidable decree with us ever to retain our native candour and simplicity, and not attempt a passage to truth under the conduct of vanity; for seeking real nature with all her fruits about her, we should think it a betraying of our trust to infect such a subject either with an ambitious, or ignorant, or any other faulty manner of treating it." See Sidney Smith's sermon, vol. ii. page 129, on Vanity.
In Whitaker's History of Craven, when examining the tombs in the church of Skipton, he says: "Here lies the body of George Clifford, third Earl of Cumberland of that family, and knight of the most noble order of the garter, who, by right of inheritance from a long continued descent of ancestors, was Lord Veteripont, Baron Clifford, Westmorland, and Vesey, Lord of the Honour of Skipton in Craven, and Hereditary High Shirieve of Westmorland, and was the last heir male of the Cliffords that rightfully enjoyed those ancient lands of inheritance in Westmorland and in Craven, with the baronies and honours appertaining to them; and lefte but one legitimate child behinde him, his daughter and sole heir, the lady Ann Clifford, now Countesse Dowager of
discomposed, and hath no concernments in the great alterations of the world, and entertains death like a friend, and reckons the issues of it as the greatest of its hopes; but ambition is full of distractions, it teems with stratagems, as Rebecca with struggling twins, and is swelled with expec
Pembroke, Dorset, and Montgomerie, who in memory of her father, erected this monument in 1653."
The present church of Skipton is a spacious and respectable building, though of very different periods. Perhaps no part of the original structure now remains; but from stone seats, with pointed arches and cylindrical columns, now in the south wall of the nave, may perhaps be referred to the earlier part of the thirteenth century. Beneath the altar unusually elevated on that account, is the vault of the Cliffords, the place of their interment from the dissolution of Bolton Priory to the death of the last Earl of Cumberland; which, after having been closed many years, I obtained permission to examine, March 29, 1803; the original vault, intended only for the first Earl and his second lady, had undergone two enlargements; and the bodies having been deposited in chronological order, first, and immediately under his tomb, lay Henry the first Earl; whose lead coffin was much corroded, and exhibited the skeleton of a short and very stout man, with a long head of flaxen hair, gathered in a knot behind the skull. The coffin had been closely fitted to the body and proved him to have been very corpulent as well as muscular. Next lay the remains of Margaret Percy, his second Countess, whose coffin was still entire. She must have been a slender and diminutive woman. The third was 'the lady Eleanor's grave,' whose coffin was decayed, and exhibited the skeleton (as might be expected in a daughter of Charles Brandon and a sister of Henry the VIIIth) of a tall and large limbed female. At her right hand was Henry the second earl, a very tall and rather slender man, whose thin envelope of lead really resembled a winding sheet, and folded like coarse drapery, over the limbs. The head was beaten to
tation as with a tympany, and sleeps sometimes as the wind in a storm, still and quiet for a minute, that it may burst out into an impetuous blast till the cordage of his heart-strings crack; fears when none is nigh, and prevents things which never
the left side; something of the shape of the face might be distinguished, and a long prominent nose was very conspicuous. Next lay Francis, Lord Clifford, a boy. At his right hand was his father George the third earl, whose lead coffin precisely resembled the outer case of an Egyptian mummy, with a rude face, and something female mammæ cast upon it; as were also the letters G. C. 1605. The body was closely wrapped in ten folds of coarse cerecloth, which being removed exhibited the face so entire (only turned to copper colour) as plainly to resemble his portraits. All his painters, however, had the complaisance to omit three large warts upon the left cheek. The coffin of earl Francis, who lay next to his brother, was of the modern shape, and alone had an outer shell of wood, which was covered with leather; the soldering had decayed, and nothing appeared but the ordinary skeleton of a tall man. This earl had never been embalmed. Over him lay another coffin, much decayed, which, I suspect, had contained the lady Anne Dacre his mother. Last, lay Henry the fifth earl, in a coffin of the same form with that of his father. Lead not allowing of absorption, or a narrow vault of much evaporation, a good deal of moisture remained in the coffin, and some hair about the skull. Both these coffins had been cut open. Room might have been found for another slender lady; but the countess of Pembroke chose to be buried at Appleby; partly, perhaps, because her beloved mother was interred there, and partly that she might not mingle her ashes with rivals and enemies.
It is curious to contrast with these humiliating relics of departed greatness, the pomp and heraldry, and the pride of genealogy, which are displayed above.
had intention, and falls under the inevitability of such accidents which either could not be foreseen, or not prevented.
ON GOVERNMENT AND REVOLUTIONS.
During the civil wars in this country, Bishop Taylor retired into Wales. His dedication to his work on the Liberty of Prophesying, in his Polemical Discourses, begins as follows:
In this great storm, which hath dashed the vessel of the church all in pieces, I have been cast upon the coast of Wales, and in a little boat thought to have enjoyed that rest and quietness which in England in a greater I could not hope for. Here I cast anchor, and thinking to ride safely, the storm followed me with so much impetuous violence, that it broke a cable, and I lost my anchor; and here again I was exposed to the mercy of the sea, and the gentleness of an element that could neither distinguish things nor persons. And but
The following extract is from an extremely interesting volume, entitled "Peace and Contentment of Mind," by Peter Du Moulin, D.D. Canon of Christ's Church, Canterbury, one of his majesty's chaplains.
"Some years ago being cast by the storm upon a remote coast, and judging that it would have been to no purpose for me to quarrel with the tempest, I sat upon the shore to behold it calmly; taking no other interest in it, but that of my sympathy with those friends whom I saw yet beaten by the wind and the waves. And to that calmness my condition