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hope, he was too much influenced by the sensibilities enkindled by domestic life, and too fully aware of the evils to which he might be exposed, to leave the scenes and the associations of so many happy years without a pang. We need not conjecture what his feelings were, for thus did he depict them.
Ye sweet, dewy dales, where but late
My fond childhood delighted to stray;
And defied the red heat of the day.
Is the path that is destin’d to me;
On the bosom of life's changeful sea.
Only smiles dimple over the deep,
And the hurricane wake from his sleep.
Shoals and whirlpools the stoutest that shake,
life-blood's at stake.
Your monitions unseen through the heart,
Let me never, no never depart.
And when to these shades I return,
If heav'n to return should allow,
With a heart no less simple than now.* On his arrival in London, he found a few associates of kindred minds; and amongst them a Mr. Godfrey, son of a surgeon at Coggeshall, and devoted to the same profession. With them he ardently pursued his theoretical and practical inquiries, not merely attending the lectures, and going assiduously through the hospital practice, but becoming an active member of a society for the promotion of natural philosophy, as well as medical science, then existing among the students at Guy's Hospital. Such an institution lay so naturally in the current of his investigating intellect, that he soon distinguished himself by the discussions into which he entered, and the essays which he prepared. One of these, “An Investigation of the Theory of Earthquakes,” is now on my table. It is a closely written manuscript, on 44 quarto pages, full of ingenuity and research, but employed in defending what all philosophers now regard as an erroneous theory. I refer to it simply for the purpose of recording, at the same time, that it yields unquestionable evidence of his having consulted, previously to writing it, (at first-hand, and not through the intervention of synopses or histories,) all that fairly bore upon the inquiry, in the works of Pliny, Seneca, Lucretius, Sim. Portius, Pontoppidan, Nollet, Amontons, Bertrand, Beccaria, Stukely, Mitchell, Franklin, Priestley, Hamilton, Henley, Williams, &c. The style of this juvenile essay is good; but it is not
* This little effusion is not presented as a specimen of beautiful poetry, but as a natural and pleasing expression of genuine sentiment.
distinguished (nor indeed would it be natural to expect it) by the ease, freedom, and spirit which marked its author's later productions.
Having terminated his winter and spring course at the hospitals, and spent the earlier part of the summer in collecting such professional information as London then supplied, he commenced his duties at Sudbury, in July or August, 1784, that is, shortly after he had completed his twentieth year.* At so early an age many obstacles to his gaining the confidence of the inhabitants would naturally present themselves. But he had the advantage of strong recommendations from his hospital friends, with the most eminent of whom he laid a plan for regular correspondence on professional topics; and he had the farther advantage of great professional activity, cheerful and engaging manners, and a soul ready to evince the liveliest sympathy in cases where it was most needed.
Some striking proofs of his surgical skill, which occurred shortly after his establishment at Sudbury, gave, however, an extent and solidity to his reputation which could not have been anticipated. The result was, that, in a few months, Mr. Deeks left the business entirely in his hands. By the time he was twenty-one
About the same time, or shortly afterwards, the Rev. Peter Good removed from Havant to Bishop's Hull, near Charmouth, where he continued to discharge the pastoral duties over a respectable church and congregation, until death put a period to his useful labours in the year 1805 or 1806. He was doubtless a man of rich intellectual qualifications; and from several of his manuscript papers, which I have been permitted to read, it appears that his religious sentiments were correct, and his spirit truly catholic and liberal; such as in “ the olden time” was evinced by Mr. Howe, and a few others, who, as that great man expresses it, were animated “ by a generous love, not to Christians of this or that party only, but to all in whom the true essentials of Christianity are found;" a spirit which, in proportion as it prevails, will “make religion a more lively, powerful, awful, amiable thing, more grateful to God, more sweet, influential, tranquillizing, and elevating to men.”
years of age, his thoughts aspired to a partnership of a more endearing kind. His frequent visits to Coggeshall had brought him into habits of intimacy with the family of his friend Mr. Godfrey, already mentioned, and had taught him that there were emotions of a higher order, and a livelier glow, than any which he had hitherto experienced. Miss Godfrey, the sister of that friend, is described, by those who still recollect her, as a young lady of accomplished mind and fascinating manners. Before she had completed her nineteenth year she was married to Mr. Good, who was then just twenty-one. Enjoying all the happiness which youth and virtue can taste at such a season, and ardently predicting a long continuance of his bliss, he tbus expressed himself.
When first in Eden's balmy bow'rs
In bliss but half complete :
The rich luxuriant seat.
That gentler form immediate rose;
He weds the lovely prize :
His Eden instant flies.
Not thus for me this lot of woe,
The partial fates decree
That bridal state—those genial hours,
Give Eden all to me. But, alas! “a worm was in the bud of this sweet rose.” In little more than six months after his marriage his youthful bride died of consumption; and he learnt, from sad experience, how correct was the presentiment that dictated these lines of a brother poet:
“Dearly bought, the hidden treasure,
Finer feelings can bestow;
Thrill the deepest notes of woe.” Burns. Nearly four years from this event Mr. Good remained a widower. His professional occupations, however, which now began to extend themselves into the surrounding villages, together with the soothing influence of time and of cheerful society, in a few months restored to his spirits their native buoyancy. At this period of his life I have reason to believe that he did not bend his mind to any regular course of study: he perused with the utmost eagerness every thing that was new to him, and he continued his early acquired habit of recording all that he thought striking, or useful, or essentially original, in one or other of his common-place-books; but his reading was desultory, and without any fixed object.
Early in the year 1790, Mr. Good had the happiness to become acquainted with a gentleman of the same profession, and in many respects of a kindred mind, Dr. NATHAN DRAKE,* well known to the public as
Dr. Drake, the commencement of this intimacy, lived at Sudbury; but in little more than a year removed to Hadleigh, in Suffolk, where he has ever since resided.