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THOUGHTS ON THE SACRED HISTORY OF
exercise of the Divine imagination in its system of cre
ation, but more exclusively existing for its own enjoyTHE CREATION.
ment, and less serviceable to man or the rest of nature (Continued from p. 154.)
any other animal kind. Though destitute of feet
and wings, few aniinals are so nimble as serpents, or The first order of amphibia, the tortoise kind, are the can transport themselves froin place to place with equal most immediately serviceable to man. The flesh of the agility. Whether to seize its prey or to escape from sea-turtle is both a valued delicacy and a useful medi. danger, the serpent mores with the rapidity of an arrow, cine: it is a gentle and harmless animal, without any twisting and untwisting its flexible body arouod the means of hurting others : its occasional subsistence is trunks and branches of the highest trees with such grass, sea.weeds, and shell-fish; but it can subsist for celerity, that the sharpest eye scarcely follows its momany months without any. The green sea turtles ge- tion. Their size greatly varies ; some are but a few nerally assemble in numbers: they can remain long inches long, while others extend to forty or fifty feet: under water, and sleep upon it. The land-tortoise has all are covered with scales, and by this analogy are conthe same gentle and peaceable manners : it enjoys a nected with the lizards and fishes. great length of life, and can live without food. This Serpents are extremely vulnerable, and easily killed class of animals were thus made to be in the waters by blows on the back part of the head: the rest of what the sheep are on the hills ; harmless, gentle, pa- their skeleton has a strong resemblance to that of fishes ; tient, and useful; one of the most pleasing forms of but from the nature of their respiration they cannot character of all animated bcing.
remain long under water. All parts of their body have The lizard division presents to us as its leading class great force, agility, and elasticity. They are most the formidable crocodiles, a name to which dread and abundant in warm and temperate regions; but increase aversion are by the prejudices of our defective know- in size and numbers in proportion to the heat and ledge almost inseparably attached : yet it is neither a moisture, and to the freedom of their range. They have fierce nor cruel animal; it seeks its prey when hunger less blood than quadrupeds; but are more animated in urges it, but it destroys only for food. They are some- times of tempesi and hurricane. Their sense of heartimes thirty feet long : their whole body is covered ing is dull, but their vision acute: their eyes for the with strong, hard scales, except the top of the head : most part are excessively brilliant and animated : they having no lips, their teeth are always bare. On land, have a membrane to draw over the sight when the sun's they can overtake a man in direct running; but if he rays are too powerful, or any injury approaches. Their turn quickly round, he escapes with ease, as the animal sense of taste is probably of considerable delicacy, as cannot so rapidly wheel round its great length of body. the tongue is very slender, and divided into two points. They abound chiefly between the tropics, but are met Several species of them live quietly about the habitawith several degrees nearer the poles; they are smaller, tions of mankind, and sometimes enter their houses, however, as more distant from the equator.
and fix their residence there: they destroy troublesome The other lizard tribes are small and pleasing ani- animals and noxious insects, but are so far from burting mals ; some are beautiful in their colours. The
guana human beings, that they often pass over them when species is highly interesting. The varieties of the green asleep without doing thein any injury. lizard are inost striking. The gilded lizard is not less Serpents are sometimes so tamed as to show stronger attractive. All are very gentle and harmless, and have signs of attachment to their masters thau many domesthe property of living without food. The most remark- ticated birds or animals, being only surpassed in fidelity able are the flying lizard and the salamander. The by the dog. Their length of life is unknown, and most flying lizard is the nearest resemblance to the fabled likely differs in their various species. They have no dragons of antiquity that nature contains; but it seldom voice, but a hiss; and this utterance is softer or stronger exceeds a foot in length, and is a weak animal, perfectly according to circumstances. They have great strength innocent and peaceful : it flies from branch to branch also, from the peculiar construction of their body; and of a tree, feeding ou ants, flies, and insects, and can are so tenacious of life, that it is difficult to kill them futter from one tree to another within thirty, paces. by wounds in the body, or by the exhaustion of The salamander, instead of living in fire, delights in air. Severe cold only suspends the activity of their cold, damp places : it retires into the hollows of old vital principle, without destroying it. Some of trees, and can remain a considerable time under water: them too are eminently beautiful in their brilliant the instant it touches fire, it covers itself with a milky colours. fluid, but never in such abundance as to extinguish the It is a curious distinction, lately ascertained, that smallest flames.
all the species of serpents of which the young are The frog genus discovers sagacities and feelings like born alive, are venomous: the oviparous vipers have those of other animals. The pearly frog of Brazil is no fangs nor venom : the more we are faipiliarized distinguished for its beauty; so is the common tree frog, to them, the more we shall be pleased to meet with which lives like birds on the branches of the forest, and them in our woods, fields, and gardens; they are in seeking insects is almost as light and nimble as they an addition to the ornaments of the fields, and are. The red tree frog is used by the Indians of South contribute, with the other animated beings, to emAmerica to give a fine red or yellow colour to the bellish the vast and magnificent theatre of vernal feathers of their parroquets.
nature. The beavers have been proverbial for their intelli- Of the other serpents it need only be mentioned, gence ever since North America, their chief seat, has that the enormous boa twists itself round calves, and become known; and the otter displays the same mater- sheep, and goats, to crush their bones, and then swal. nal sensibilities which other orders of animals so strik- lows thein whole: it has been seen to overcome and ingly exhibit. Thus all quadrupeds seem to have been devour tigers in this way, though not till after a descreated with one analogous inind, uniformn in its essen. perate struggle. In Egypt and other parts of Africa, tial qualities, but acting variously, according to the serpent flesh has been made an article of human food, diversities of its bodily investments.
and modern as well as ancient nations have made them The serpent tribe is another of the departments of objects of religious veneration. the same grand empire of organized living forms; full of mingled beauty and terror, presenting to us a new
(To be continued.)
Anniversaries of Religious and Benevolent
LONDON MISSIONARY SOCIETY. On Thursday, May 9, the Thirty-ninth Annual Meeting of this great Institution was held at Exeter Hall. It appears that this was the most numerous assembly convened during the present anniversaries. The Rev. Mr. the chair was taken by Thomas Wilson, Esq. Treasurer to the Society.
The Rev. W. Ellis read an abstract of the Report, which exhibited a most important scene of labour. The following plan exhibits the present state of this Society's operations.
Native Stations. Missionaries. Teachers. South Seas......
14 ........ Ultra Ganges
3 East Indies
0 South Africa...... 25
13 Madagascar & Mauritius 3
93 British Guiana
it appeared that the Society is greatly increasing in the estimation of the Christian public, as indispensably necessary to promote the evangelization of the villages in Britain. The receipts of the Society for the past year had amounted to 4,9471.; reinoviug the debt which for several years had iinpeded the operations of the Institution.
The Meeting was addressed by the Rev. J. Clayton ; the Rev. J. Sibree, of Coventry; the Rev. Dr. Morison; the Rev. Mr. Luke, of Taunton; the Rev. Dr. Bennett; the Rev. Mr. Brook, of Birmingham; the Rev. Mr. Ed. wards, Secretary to the Baptist Home Missionary Society; and the Rev. J. E. Good, of Bristol.
Several donations were announced; 101. from W. A. Hankey, Esq.; and the Rev. Mr. Brook stated, that the Rev. T. East of Birmingham had placed 501. in his hands, to give to the Society, on condition that the collection amounted to 1001. Mr. Brook observed, that the Home Missionary cause was gaining ground in Birmingham, in which we sincerely rejoice, as the Christians in that great town have for a long period shown how much they can do for the interests of Christ, and for every philanthropic cause which has been ever laid plainly before them.
93 264 Making, with upwards of 400 schoolmasters, assistants, catechists, &c. between 500 and 600 persons more or less dependent on the Society, exclusive of faunilies.
The number of native churches is 54, and that of native communicants 4,557 ; of schools, the number is 448, and that of scholars 27,257. The number of printing establishments is 13, from nine of which have been printed 250,050 books, including 37,500 portions of scripture, and from eleven stations, 113,237 copies of books have been put in circulation during the past year.
The amount of receipts of the Society is nearly 37,5001. and the expenditure nearly 41,6001. ; leaving a balance against the Society of upwards of 4,0001. for the past year. For the support of the present operations of the Society, from 45,0001. to 50,0001. per annum are indis. pensably required, and we trust the amount will be readily furnished.
The Meeting was addressed by the Rev. Dr. Wardlaw, of Glasgow; J. Davies, Esq. of Wales; the Rev. Dr. S. H. Cox, of New York; the Rev. R. H. Hamilton, of Leeds; the Rev. J. Langley, of Wallingford, of the church of England; the Hon. Capt. Waldegrave, R. N. lately returned from the South Seas; the Rev. Dr. Do. ran, late a Church Missionary at Travancore; the Rev. J. Roberts, late Missionary in Ceylon; the Rev. D. Stuart, of Dublin; and the Rev. J. Philippo, Missionary from Jamaica.
The true spirit of the gospel seeined eminently to pervade the Meeting; and during the progress of the business, the chairman announced the receipt of 1001. to which he proposed adding his 1001. if 6001. could be thus raised. J. Dyer, Esq. announced a donation of 100 guineas from an anonymous friend, and 3631.38.3d. were collected at the Meeting.
SUNDAY SCHOOL UNION. On Thursday evening, May 2, the Anniversary Meeting of this institution was held at Exeter Hall. Lord Henley took the chair, after singing and prayer.
Mr. W.F. Lloyd read an abstract of the Report of the past year, full of the most interesting details. We can notice only a few particulars. It mentioned, that the last report of the American Sunday School Union stated the total number of 9,187 Sunday Schools, 80,913 teachers, and 542,420 scholars. The total number of Sunday schools at the present period in Great Britain, is stated to be 11,275, of teachers 128,784, and of scholars 1,158,435; being an increase, during the last year, of 329 schools, 12,468 teachers, and 22,915 scholars. From the depository accounts, it appeared that the sales, during the past year, had amounted to 7,0301. 38. 2 d.
The Meeting was addressed by the Rev. Dr. Morison; the Rev. J. Burnett; Sir Andrew Agnew, M. P. ; the Rev. J. M. Philippo, late Missionary at Jamaica ; George Bennett, Esq. of Sheffield; the Rev. J. Beaumont; Andrew Johnston, Esq.; Mr. Wilson, Sunday school Missionary; the Rev. C. Stovel; and Dr. All.
We are especially delighted with the purpose of the establishment of a Library and Reading Room for Sunday schoul Teachers” at the Depository, Paternoster Row, London. Why not such an establishment in Birasingham, Manchester, Liverpool, Leeds, &c.?
IRISH EVANGELICAL SOCIETY. On Tuesday evening, May 7, the Nineteenth General Meeting of the Irish Evangelical Society was held at Finsbury Chapel, Moorfields. Thomas Walker, Esq. Treasurer, in the chair Prayer having been offered by the Rev. R. Vaughan of Kensington, an abstract of the Report was read by the Rev. A. Tidman, Secretary. An interesting detail was given of the stations occupied, the number of agents einployed, th
nature of their labours, and the successes which had crowned their operations. The income of the Society amounted to 3,0961. 185.9d., and the disbursements to 3,0981. 188. 10d.; there were engagements and debts to the amount of 6001., and 5001. had been sold out of the funded property,
HOME MISSIONARY SOCIETY. On Tuesday evening, May 14, the Fifteenth General Meeting of this valuable Institution was held at Exeter Hall. After singing the 117th Psalm, and prayer by the Rev. T. Jackson of Stockwell, Thomas Thompson, Esq. the Treasurer of the Society, took the chair. A most interesting abstract of the Report was read, by which
The Meeting was addressed by the Rev. G. Clayton;
ECCLESIASTICAL BIOGRAPHY. the Rev. D. Stuart, of Dublin ; Josiah Conder, Esq.; the Rev. J. Burnett; the Rev. Dr. Styles : and the Rev. Dr. Morison. By their intelligent and powerful 31. CLEMENS ALEXANDRINUS. Titus Flavius Cleappeals, the wants of Ireland were made to produce a mens is called Alexandrinus, from the place of his deep impression on the assembly; and during the pro- residence, Alexandria in Egypt. By Christian writers gress of the business, the Rev. J. Burnett announced of that age, he is celebrated as a mau of learning, donations of 101. 10s. from Mr. Hollam ; 211. from surpassing most if not all of his time. Clemens is T. Walker, Esq., 101, 108. from T. Challis, Esq. ; believed to have been brought up an idolater : but 101. 108. from W. A. Hankey, Esq.; 101. 10s. from thirsting for knowledge, he studied at Athens, of which Dr. Conquest; 101. 10s. from T. Wilson, Esq.; 101. 10s. he is supposed to have been a native; pursued his in. from J. Wilson, Esq.; 51. 5s. from W. Hunter, Esq. vestigations in various parts of the East; and perfected The collection and donations exceded 1501.
his inquiries in Egypt. He had thus fully examined the doctrines of the different sects of pagan philosophers; but finding nothing in their various systers
which could satisfy the soul of man, or relieve the WHIT-SUNDAY.
guilty conscience, he was prepared to abandon them
as false and pernicious, and embrace the gospel of WAIT-SUNDAY, originally called White-Sunday, is the Christ. day on which is commemorated the extraordinary Clemens settling at Alexandria, about A. D. 190, effusion of the Holy Spirit upon the Apostles, as pro- assisted Pantænus in the famous catechetical school in mised by Christ. John xiv, xv, xvi; Acts ii. On this that city, after having been instructed in the doctrines auspicious day, the memorable Jewish Pentecost, those of Christianity by that renowned father. Clemens was heralds of Messiah were miraculously qualified to fulfil ordained Presbyter in the church of Alexandria, and their high commission, being so endowed as perfectly became a zealous preacher of the faith of Christ. On to understand the prophecies of Christ contained in the the death of Pantænus, A. D. 216, Clemens succeeded Old Testament Scriptures, and to speak in the lan- his revered instructor, as president of the Academy. guages of all nations as the Spirit gave them utter- His labours appear to have been eminently useful;
but we have not all the information that is desirable Without this divine assistance their commission to concerning this distinguished father in the church of evangelize the world would have been in vain ; but Christ. The Commentary of Clemens upon the Canoniwith this, they were enabled to "preach among the cal Epistles is lust: but his Stroinata, Pedagogue, and Gentiles the unsearchable riches of Christ,” and to Exhortatations addressed to the Greeks are extant, and write the inestimably precious records of the New which abundantly show the extent of his learning, and Testament for our edification and salvation.
the force of his genius. While, however, he enjoyed White-Sunday is the name given to this memorable the highest respect of the most eminent Christian day, on account of the white garments used in the early teachers of that age in the East, it is certain that, ages of Christianity. Baptism was administered on adhering to many of his early philosophic notions, he this day with much parade and ceremony, unknown to obscured the brightness of divine truth, by incorporating the primitive Christians, and not prescribed by the them with the gospel. In his Stromata, Clemens says, “i Apostles, the candidates for baptisın appearing in white espoused not this or that philosophy, not the Stoic, nor robes, to indicate the purity of their Christian pro- the Platonic, nor the Epicureau, nor that of Aristotle ; fession.
but whatever any of these sects had said that was fit The Greeks called this Bright-Sunday, on account of and just, that taught righteousness with a divine and the general use of white garinents, worn on that day, religious knowledge, all that being selected, I call as an emblem of the holiness of their professed religion. philosophy." The name given to this Sunday in the old Roman Persecution under the emperor Severus raging espechurch was Dominica in Albis, the Lord's day in White cially at Alexandria, many of the Christians fed to garments.
other cities and provinces for security, and we find The Holy Scriptures enjoin no religious observance Clemens at Jerusalem. Alexander, bishop of the of this day; nor is it recommended to us by the ex. church in that place, was in prison for the cause of ample of the Apostles. It seems to have originated in Christ, and by Clemens he wrote a letter to the Chris. sincere piety; but in the dark ages of popery, it was tians at Antioch, the following fragment of which abused to superstition and licentiousness. James I, to exhibits all the parties in an interesting point of view : conciliate the Papists and to provoke the Puritans, “ Alexander, a servant of God, and a prisoner of Jesus pulished a Declaration,” called “ The Book of Christ, to the blessed church at Antioch, in the Lord, Sports," which commanded the people who came to greeting: Our Lord has made my bonds, in this time church twice on the Lord's day, to recreate them- of iny imprisonment, light and easy to ine; while I selves, by dancing, archery, leaping, vaulting, May- understood that Asclepiades, a person adınirably quagames, Whitsun-ales, Morice-dances, Maypole-dancing, lified by his eminence in the faith, was, by divine and other sports of a like kind.”
providence, become bishop of your holy church of Whitsun-ales, a pernicious popish custoin, was thus Antioch. These letters, brethren, I have sent you by revived, and in many of the villages of our country it Clemens, the blessed presbyter, a man of approved still prevails in the popular Wakes, which are attendeel integrity, whom ye both do know already and shall with customs and practices most degrading. We trust, still further know: he hath been here with us according however, that the system of Sunday school instruction, to the good will of God, and hath much established and and the operations of the Home Missionary Society, augmented the church of Christ.” and of various other institutions, diffusing the know- Clemens returoed from Antioch to Alexandria, ledge of the Holy Scriptures, will produce a moral where he finished his mortal course; but by what death · renovation throughout the population of Great Britain, he glorified his Saviour we are not informed. An preparing and qualifying them to commemorate the extract or two from his “Exhortations to the Greeks,” glorious facts of Pentecost, as one of the most ino- cannot fail to be interesting. He points out the mentous events of the Divine dispensation.
difference between the design of Jesus Christ, and that
of Orpheus, and of those musicians, who were the
THE WOODLARK. authors of idolatry. Clernens says, “These, captivated men by the sweetness of their music, with a view of
(Alauda arborea. LINNÆUS.) rendering them miserable slaves to idols ; and of
In a former paper upon the skylark (vol. i, p. 95), we making them like the very beasts, the stocks, the stones, stated that there were only two species of the genus which they adored; whereas Jesus Christ, who from
lark known in England. That which we are now about all eternity was the Word of God, always had a com- to describe, the woodlark, is one of our sweetest song. passionate tenderness for men, and at last took their
sters, and continues in song almost all the year round, nature upon him, to free them from the slavery of
with the exception of the months of June and July. It demons, to open the eyes of the blind and the ears of
sings, like the skylark, on wing; but differs from that the deaf, to guide their paths in the way of righteous- bird in the mode of its flight, wheeling round in widely: ness, to deliver them from death and hell ; and to
extended circles, and pouring forth its most beautiful bestow on them everlasting life, and to put them in a and melodious notes for a whole hour at a time. “The capacity of living a heavenly life here upon earth; and
skylark's song is very sweet, full of harmony, and lastly, God made himself man, to teach man to be like cheerful as the blue sky and bright sunny beam in unto God. If you were permitted,” says he, “to which he aports, and he is heard and admired by all, purchase eternal salvation, what would you not give from the ploughman to the prince; but the pote of the for it? And now you may obtain it by faith and love ;
woudlark is local, not generally known, and from its there is nothing can hinder you from acquiring it; remarkable softness must alınost be listened for, to be neither porerty, nor misery, nor old age, nor any state heard, and claims nothing of the hilarity of the other. of life. Believe, therefore, in our God, who is God
Its gentle, quiet melody, seems rather that of placid and man, and receive eternal salvation for a recom
contentment.” pense. Seek God, and ye shall live for ever!”
The general characteristics of this bird are similar to those of the skylark : its length is about six inches, and its weight about eight drains. It is by no means so
plentiful as the skylark; neither does it congregate in AN APPEAL TO THE ATHEIST.
such flocks as that bird, but it associates only in little PSALM XIV, 1.
families ; these may be met with in most parts of the
kingdom. The fool hath said “There is no God.”
The woodlark breeds very early, beginning to build No God! Who lights the morning sun,
its nest in March. Col. Montague says he has found And sends him on his heavenly road,
the nest with eggs as early as the 4th of April. A far and brilliant course to run ?
nest is placed on the ground, most commonly on rough Who, when the radiant day is done,
and barren land, under a tuft of high grass, furze, or Hangs forth the moon's nocturnal lamp;
some low bush ; and is made of dry grass, lined with And bids the planets, one by one,
finer grass, and sometimes with a few long hairs. The Steal o'er the night-vales, dark and damp?
eggs are generally four in number, brown, mottled with No God! Who gives the evening dew,
dusky and ash colour, mostly at the larger end: they
are somewhat less than those of the skylark, and weigh The fanning breeze, the fostering shower ? Who warms the spring-morn's budding bough,
from forty to fifty grains. This bird feeds upon grain And paints the summer's noontide flower?
and seeds of various kinds, as well as insects.” Who spreads, in the autumnal bower,
The following lines from the Forest Minstrel are The fruit-tree's mellow stores around;
beautifully descriptive of this little bird. And sends the winter's icy power
No trec's leafy foliage einbowereth his nest, T invigorate th' exhausted ground?
But lowly it lies on the earth's trodden breast,
And he flits through the wintry scene
With a silent, but strong and unmurmuring wing, And gives the deer its power to spring
Till he marks the first glimpse of the green-vesteri spring. From rock to rock triumphantly?
Then away - away - through the splendours of day, Who form'd Behemoth, huge and high,
To heaven he carries his praise :
Ah! who does not love that delectable lay,
As o'er mountain and forest it plays ?
Though lowlier he build than each inusical bird, No God! Who warms the heart to heave
Yet longer and louder his carols are heard,
And heaven his glad anthem repays,
As, day after day, to its portals he towers,
More sweet grows his nest midst deep verdure and flowers.
THE WILL OF THE LATE REV. ROWLAND HILL. That tell us of an after-life?
We understand the will of the late venerable Rowland No God! Who fix'd the solid ground
Hill has been proved under 17,0001.; and we are inOn pillars strong, that alter not?
formed that about 11,0001. has been left to be devoted Who spread the curtain'd skies around?
to the promotion of evangelical religion in the destitute Who doth the ocean bounds allot?
and neglected villages of Britain. We regard this as a Who all things to perfection brought
lovely expression of the purest Christian patriotism. On earth below, in heaven abroad? Go ask the fool of impious thought,
London: Printed and Published by C. WOOD AND SON, Poppin's Court, That dares to say — “There is no God!”
Fleet Street; to whom all Communicatious for the Editor (post paid) Knox.
should be addressed ; – and sold by all Booksellers and Newsmen in the United Kingdom.
his daughter; and Neptune arraigned Mars before a AREOPAGUS
jury of twelve deities, by whoin he was acquitted. Is so called from two Greek words, Areios, of Mars, Areopagus was celebrated all over Greece and other and Pagus, a court. Our readers will remember that distant countries, for the strict impartiality of its this is the place to which the Athenians brought the decisions; and Demosthenes tells us, that to his time, apostle Paul, Acts svii, 19-22, when he preached in there never had been so much as one of their detertheir renowned city, the doctrine of salvation by Jesus minations, which either plaintiff or defendant had called Christ. This famous place was the highest court of in question. Foreign states, therefore, frequently rejudicature at Athens, erected on a hill dedicated to ferred to their decision. Ancient authors relate some Mars, the fabulous god of war. On this account the remarkable decisions of this tribunal. Aulus Gellius, same Greek words, which in ver. 19 are rendered Areo- and Valerius Maximus, mention the case of a woman, pagus, in ver. 22 are translated Mars' Hill. However, who was accused of having poisoned her husband and Mars' Hill was not limited to that court of justice, but her son, in the time of Julius Cæsar. She was taken, included the whole of an immense rock; and so trans- and brought before Dolabella, who was proconsul of lating the words, leaves the station and dignity of Asia. She was no sooner in his presence than she “Dionysius the Areopagite,” ver. 34, less evident to acknowledged the fact; and added, that she had very an unlearned reader, as one of the judges of that famous good reason for putting her husband and son to death. court.
“I had,” said she, "to my first husband a son whoin I Areopagus is thought by some to have been instituted tenderly loved, and whose virtues rendered him worthy as a court of justice by Cecrops, the first king of of my affection. My second husband, and the son Athens, about the time of Moses; and to have been whom I bare to him, inurdered my favourite child ! called after Mars, because he was the first that was thought it would be unjust to have suffered those two judged there, on this occasion: Mars had murdered nonsters of barbarity to live. If you think, Sir, that Habirrhothius the son of Neptune, for abusing Alceppe I have committed a crime, it is your province to punish Vol. II.