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CROMWELL frustrated my chief hope, and would not fuffer me to come nigh the general, the head-quarters, or himself, nor ever once to speak to him. When the war seemed over, I was invited home again; but I calld near twenty minifters together at Coventree, and told them that the crisis was now not far off ; the army would shortly shew themselves in rebellion against King, Parliament and Church; and I was willing to venture my life to try to draw off as many as I could against them. They voted me to stay: I went back, and it pleased God, that the very first day they met at Nottingham in council to confederate as I foresaw, I was not only kept away, but finally separated from them by bleeding almost to death, 120 ounces at the nose; had not that prevented, I had hazarded my life at Triploe heath, where they broke out, but had done little good. For when the sober part then declared against them, they drew off about 5000 or 6000 men, and CROMWELL filled up their places with Sectaries, and was much stronger than before. All that I could do after, was to preach and write against them. This is the true account of the case of your old friend,
· How little knew Mr. DURELL! how falsely he described my case at Kederminster! I may not now stay you with a narrative.
'The DISTRESSES of a CLERGYMAN's family.
To the S T U D E N T. SIR, O BSERVING in your last number the scheme, which a
worthy friend of mine told me he intended to send you, for raising a fund for the maintenance of the Widows and Children of the inferiour Clergy, I have taken the liberty to send you the following story ; which, as it is true, proves how
necessary necessary a provision of this kind is. Was every man to communicate the distresses which fall under his own observa-, vation from the want of it, I am persuaded you would have matter enough to fill several folios : but if you publish now and then a story of this kind, it will keep the scheme alive, and very possibly be the occasion of its being carried into execution. The following I had from one of the family, who was a sharer of the distresses you will find in it. She would not give me leave either to mention her name or place; I shall therefore speak of it in general terms.
A clergyman in the west of England, poffefs’d of a living of 150 l. per annum, had five children, three sons and two daughters. The education of his sons he took to himself: that of his daughters fell to the lot of his wife, who' (to tell her character in few words) was in no respect inferiour to any of her sex either for the charms of her person or mind ; and if she was excell'd in merit by any of ours, it was by her husband, whose private character as a man and a christian made him as much the object of esteem to those who had the happiness of his acquaintance, as his amiable behaviour in his function gain’d him the love and veneration of all those who had only heard of his character, Under. the care and tuition of this worthy couple, who were living patterns of virtue and goodness, were these children brought up. After the father had seen his three fons settled in the world in trades suited to their capacities and his fortune, he died, and left his wife and two daughters worth about 200 l. and the goods of the house, which, as they had been many years married, could not be of any great value. What a shocking downfall was this ! thus to be reduc'd from an income of 150 1. per annum, to that of 10 l.
But to let the lady tell her own story,—I shall give it you in her own words. She said, that the loss of her father afflicted her too much to give her leave to think of herself, and that this misfortune threw her mother into fo violent a fit of illness as alarm’d her with the dreadful apprehensions
of a fecond loss equal to the first: but time, says she, and scarcity of money having brought us a little to ourselves, my mother, fister, and myselfz the melancholy remains of a once chearful family, began to think how we should live, My sister and I proposed going to service, and to allow our mos ther something every year out of our wages. My brothers too, whose duty to her was no less than their love to us, insisted on being admitted into a contribution fo agreeable to their duty and inclination. My mother, who was behind none of us in affection, thanked us with tears in her eyes for our kind offer; and said, that she thought herself amply rewarded by this expression of their love and duty for all the care and pains they had cost her; but she hoped, as her poor husband was so universally beloved by all that knew him, and had the happiness of living in the strictest friendfhip with gentlemen of the best of fortunes, that their memory of his merit would raise her some friends; which would enable her to protect, and not to rob, her dear children. But how grofly was she mistaken in this ! for all those neighbours, that us’d to come in and out so freely and without ceremony, now made formal visits of condoleance; and those who had professed the strongest friendship in my poor father's time, came seldom or never to see us; which shews, that distress does not drive away friends, but only distinguishes the real from the pretended ones. This hurt my mother to the last degree ; for as she was sincere herself, she was inclin'd to think every one else fo. I then thought we were at the height of our misery; but severer distresses were reserv’d for us ; for the 200 l. which my father had with great care got together, he generously lent to a neighbouring farmer to prevent his landlord from seizing his stock, and all our security was the farmer's bond, who about this time broke and left the country,
Thus were we totally destitute of friends and support; and to add to this, we were obliged to remove from the parsonage house to give room for the gentleman and his family who was to succeed my father. And as there was no house
empty empty in the parish, and ourą poverty was too much known to expect any civilities from the neighbourhood, we went to a village, where we found shelter in an honest farmer's house : here we lived all together some time on the money we received for our goods, which we fold before we came as way. Two of my brothers were now out of their time, and came down to us; and both engag’d to allow their mother fo much per month out of their wages, and advis’d me and my sister to go to London with them, and make a visit to a rich old uncle on my father's fide. So leaving my mother with the farmer's wife, who was a very good fort of woman; we set out together : But the reception we met with at my uncle's was very cool. He told us, he was very sorry for our misfortunes; but that our father had not us'd him very well; and for that reason he should not take any notice of his fa mily. He was kind enough to tell us, we were good strong wenches, and young, and might very well go to service; but as for my mamma, as she was old and could not work, he would allow her 51. per annum. We thanked him kindly and left him. Tho' I was very well pleased with the friendship he intended my poor mamma, yet I was heartily enraged at the manner in which he offered it. One of my brothers told me, that he hop?d we would endeavour to reconcile ourselves to our station, and that if we would go to service, he would endeavour to get us places. He accordingly went home and told his mistress our case; who, as she was a good fort of a woman, sent for us, and in a week's time recommended us both to places, what they call in London places of all work. My sister did not long live in this state of drudgery : she caught the small-pox and died : the news of which put an end to my poor mamma's life also. For my own part, as I had great health and spirits, I did very well in my place, and got so much the good-will of my mistress, that the told me it was a pity I should be in a place -of all work, and that she would endeavour to recommend me into fome genteel family. In this she was as
good good as her word, as you see, for, at present ; for it was she that recommended me to the person I now serve.
Thus, fir, I have sent you this poor girl's story word for word, as I had it from her own mouth over a dish of tea; which you may publish, if you think it worthy your notice. By it we see the female part of a worthy family, that had liv'd many years in comfort, credit, and reputation, thrown into the highest distresses at once. Misfortunes, when they come by degrees, are easier born than sudden shocks. Those, who have not experienced the changes of fortune, are but ill judges of the difficulty it is to those, who have spent the former part of their lives in ease and affluence, to reconcile themselyes to stations of drudgery and servitude. Tho' this be greatly owing to a false pride, which is shock'd at the found of poverty, yet it is productive of miseries of the sea verest kind. For my own part I have seen many clergy, men's families more unhappy than that abovementioned, where loss of virtue has been join'd to every other: and were we to believe the stories of those miserable wretches, the prostitutes in London, how heartily would a good mind wish for the execution of this scheme! Whật numbers of unhappy people, and those too the least able to struggle with difficulties, viz. women, would this rescue from vice and mifery! What a scope is here for benevolence! What food for goodness! As I have the highest veneration for the religion establish'd in our country, so have I the highest respect foș its teachers. There is nothing I lament more than the great propensity I have observ'd among all degrees of people, to turn the inferiour clergy into ridicule, of which their poverty is the constant subject: and I am afraid, this is not a little owing to the disregard paid them by the dignify'd clergy, Were I to pitch upon a man equal to the execution of this laudable design, it should be his Grace the ARCHBISHOP of CANTERBURY, in whom are united the three essentials to every great action ; a benevolent disposition to give an inclination and relish to do good, a powes to enable him to do