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be enjoyed when time (which I therefore thought slow-paced) had changed my youth into manhood. But age and experience have taught me that those were but empty hopes; for I have always found it true, as my Saviour did foretell, “Sufficient for the day is the evil thereof.” Neyertheless, I saw there a succession of boys using the same recreations, and, questionless, possessed with the same thoughts that then possessed me. Thus one generation succeeds another, both in their lives, recreations, hopes, fears, and death.”
After his return from Winchester to Eton, which was about five months before his death, he became much more retired and contemplative; in which time he was often visited by Mr. John Hales (the learned Mr. John Hales), then a Fellow of that college, to whom, upon an occasion, he spake to this purpose: “I have, in my passage to my grave, met with most of those joys of which a discoursive soul is capable, and been entertained with more inferior pleasures than the sons of men are usually made partakers of Newertheless in this voyage I have not always floated on the calm Sea of content; but have often met with cross winds and storms, and with many troubles of mind and temptations to evil. And yet, though I have been and am a man compassed about with human frailties, Almighty God hath, by his grace, prevented me from making shipwreck of faith and a good conscience, the thought of which is now the joy of my heart; and I most humbly praise him for it. And I humbly acknowledge that it was not myself, but he that hath kept me to this great age, and let him take the glory of his great mercy. And, my dear friend, I now see that I draw near my harbour of death; that harbour that will secure me from all the future storms and waves of this restless world; and I praise God I am willing to leave it, and expect a better; that world wherein dwelleth righteousness; and I long for it.” These and the like expressions were then uttered by him at the beginning of a feverish distemper, at which time he was also troubled with an asthma or short spitting. But after less than twenty fits, by the help of familiar physic and a spare diet, this fever abated, yet so as to leave him much weaker than it found him ; and his asthma seemed also to be overcome in a good degree by his forbearing tobacco, which, as many thoughtful men do, he also had taken somewhat immoderately. This was his then present condition, and thus he continued till about the end of October, 1639, which was about a month before his death ; at which time he again fell into a fever, which, though he seemed to recover, yet these still left him so weak, that they and those other common infirmities that accompany age, and were wont to visit him like civil friends, and after some short time to leave him, came now both oftener and with more violence, and at last took up their constant habitation with him, still weakening his body and abating his cheerfulness; of both which he grew more sensible, and did the oftener retire into his study, and there made many papers that had passed his pen, both in the days of his youth and in the busy part of his life, useless, by a fire made there to that purpose. These, and several unusual expressions to his servants and friends, seemed to foretell that the day of his death drew near; for which he seemed, to those many friends that observed him, to be well prepared, and to be both patient and free from all fear, as several of his letters, writ on this his last sick-bed, may testify. And thus he continued till about the beginning of December following, at which time he was seized more violently with a quotidian fever, in the tenth fit of which fever, his better part, that part of Sir Henry Wotton which could not die, put off mortality with as much content and cheerfulness as human frailty is capable of, being then in great tranquillity of mind, and in perfect peace with God and mart. And thus the circle of Sir Henry Wotton's life, – that circle which began at Bocton, and in the circumference thereof did first touch at Winchester school, then at Oxford, and after upon so many remarkable parts and passages in Christendom, - that circle of his life was by death thus closed up and completed, in the seventysecond year of his age, at Eton college, where, according to his will he now lies buried, with his motto on a plain grave-stone over him: dying worthy of his name and family; worthy of the love and favor of so many princes and persons of eminent wisdom and learning; worthy of the trust committed unto him for the service of his prince and country.
And all readers are requested to believe, that he was worthy of a more worthy pen to have preserved his memory and commended his merits to the imitation of posterity.
WHAT shall we say, since silent now is he,
Whom England now no more returned must see :