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how many of the youth who attend our places of devotional resort, could we address, with propriety, the same question, “How long halt ye between two opinions ?" How many are there who can go no farther than Agrippa, when he said to Paul, “ Almost thou persuadest me to be a Christian." Almost! Only almost persuaded to be a Christian! What a melancholy thought!!
Rev. J. A. JAMES.
Sad is our state through guilt and sin,
Our sins how great they are;
Engulph'd in dark despair.
With pity in his eye,
And brought salvation nigh. .
And sin, and fear, and grief,
The song of sweet relief.
Where dark despair had fled,
And life unto the dead.
Flew open wide again ;
Of erring, guilty man.
Jesus, the sinner's friend;
Which never knows an end.
TYNEMOUTH. ABOUT nine miles, east, from the town of Newcastle, in the county of Northumberland, is the town of Tynemouth. It is situate on the sea shore, and on the north bank of the river Tyne, from which the name of the town has been derived. In the neighbourhood are several salt works, but the coal trade is the chief business of the place.
Tynemouth is a favourite place for sea bathing, and is much resorted to, in the season, by visitors. The Marsden Rocks, which have been separated from the shore by the encroachments of the sea, contain several large caverns ; these are frequently visited as objects of curiosity. The rocks called the Black Middens, and other rocks, render the coast of Tynemouth dangerous to mariners.
Eastward of the town, on a peninsula formed of lofty rocks, there is a lighthouse, the remains of an ancient priory, and barracks. The priory is supposed to have been erected more than one thousand years since. The site on which it was erected, was chosen because of its security, and being elevated and near to the sea, it could easily be seen from ships sailing on the ocean. Grose, in his work on the “ Antiquities of England,” says, “ The exalted height on which the monastery stood, rendered it visible at sea, a long way off, in every direction, where it presented itself, as if reminding and exhorting seamen in danger to make their vows, and promise masses and presents to the Virgin Mary and Saint Oswin.” Saint Oswin, we suppose, was the founder of the monastery or priory. This was a large establishment, as appears from the extensive ruins which remain.
When the Danes invaded England, Tynemouth priory was repeatedly plundered, and one year the church was destroyed by fire. In the reign of king Edward the Confessor, Tosti, earl of Northumberland, rebuilt and endowed the priory. It appears to have been a place of defence, as well as a religious establishment, for, in the year 1090, Robertde-Mowbray fled here for safety, and defended himself against William Rufus, who was then king of England. Here Robert-de-Mowbray was taken prisoner, and was conveyed thence to Windsor, where he, after a long imprisonment, was put to death.
The priory having been taken possession of by the Commissioners of Henry the eighth, it, with the land adjoining, was granted by Edward the sixth, to Dudley, earl of Northumberland, but was soon after forfeited to the crown. In the reign of queen Elizabeth, it was occupied as a fortress, and was called Tynemouth Castle. In the war between Charles the first and the parliament, the garrison of Tynemouth declared for the king, and the place was besieged and taken by the Scotch forces, who took part with the English parliament. There was then found in the castle, thirty-eight pieces of ordinance, a large store of arms, ammunition, and provisions. The parliament repaired the castle, and made Colonel Henry Lilburne its governor, but he and the garrison deserted the cause of the parliament, and declared for king Charles. The parliamentary general, Sir Arthur Hazelrig, then stormed the castle and took it, and Colonel Lilburne was slain in the assault.
The following account of this ancient edifice, is from a work published rather more than forty years since.
“ The approach to the priory is from the west, by a gateway tower of a square form, having a circular exploratory turret on each corner from this gateway, on each hand, a strong double wall has been extended to the rocks on the sea shore, whieh, from their height, have been esteemed, in former times, inaccessible. The gate and the walls were fortified by a deep ditch, over which there was a drawbridge, defended by moles on each side. The tower has an outward and interior gateway, at the distance of about six feet from each other : the interior one is defended by a portcullis and an open gallery; the interior gateway is strengthened by a double gate. The space between the gateways being a square of about six paces, was left open above, to allow those on the top of the tower and battlements to annoy assailants who had gained the first gate.
“On passing the gateway, the scene is strikingly noble and venerable; the enclosed area contains about six acres; the view is crowded with stately ruins; many fine arches of the priory are standing. The most beautiful part of these remains is the eastern part of the church, which is of elegant workmanship. The ruins are so 'disunited, that it would be very difficult to determine to 'what particular office each belonged. The ruins which present themselves in front, on entering the gateway, appear to be the remains of the cloister ; access to which was afforded by a gateway of circular arches, comprehending several members inclining inwards, and arising from pilasters. After passing this gate, in the area many modern tombs appear, the ground being still used for sepulture. The west gate entering into the abbey is still entire, of the same architecture as that leading to the cloister. The ground from the cloister to the south wall, is almost covered with foundations, which, it is presumed, are the remains of the priory. Two walls of the church are standing ; the end wall, to the east, contains three long windows; the centre window, the loftiest, is near twenty feet high, richly ornamented with mouldings, some of which are of rose work, and others of the dancette, as the figure is termed in heraldry, or zigzag, a decoration common to old Saxon architecture. Beneath the centre window, at the east end, is a doorway of excellent work
manship, conducting to a small but elegant apartment, which is supposed to have contained the shrine and tomb of St. Oswin. On each side of the door is a human head; cut in a style much superior to that of the general taste of the age in which they are supposed to have been executed.”
The lighthouse, the ruins of the priory, and barracks, are the principal buildings represented in our engraving. They are seen at a great distance and present a very interesting appearance.
ALEXANDER THE GREAT AND THE JEWISH
The history of Alexander the Great fills a conspicuous place in the history of former ages. This extraordinary personage is referred to in the sacred Scriptures. The prophet Daniel speaks of his conquest and successes. In the book of Daniel we have predictions concerning the rise and decline, succession and duration, of the four principal ancient empires, but which now have passed away. Bishop Newton, in referring to Daniel vii. 6, observes :-" The third kingdom is represented by another beast like a leopard, which had on the back of it four wings of a fowl; the beast had also four heads; and dominion was given to it.' This is the kingdom of the Macedonians or Grecians, who, under the command of Alexander the Great, overcame the Persians, and reigned next after them: and it is fitly compared to a leopard on several accounts. The leopard is remarkable for swiftness. Their horses,' saith the prophet Habbakuk,' are swifter than the leopards.' And Alexander and the Macedonians were amazingly swift and rapid in their conquests. The leopard is a spotted animal, and so was a proper emblem, according to Bochart, of the different manners of the nations which Alexander commanded; or, according to Grotius, of the various manners of Alexander himself, who was sometimes merciful, and sometimes cruel ; sometimes temperate, and sometimes drunken; sometimes abstemious, and sometimes incontinent. The leopard, as Bochart observes,