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The jagged hill-top bristling with the spear
Could not avert the day
Of counsel-crushing fear :
“THE STILL SMALL VOICE.”
Hush! hush! a voice comes through the midnight stealing
Upon thine ear in cadence soft and low, And to thy better self it is appealing;
How hard the heart, its sound that does not know !
It sinks into the soul, vain all repelling,
It will be heard, it will assert a claim, Of wasted time and talents oft 'tis telling,
And sins that swelled till “ Legion” was their name. Guilt shrinks appalled and longs for beams of morning,
To chase the darkness and the gloom away, That it may then walk forth in triumph, scorning
Night's solemn lesson in the face of day. That still small voice !-How oft in lonely hours
It thrills the wicked-bows the loftiest head, Humbling the mighty one, till e’en he cowers
Who in his scornful pride had felt no dread.
Seek not to quell it; let its earnest pleading
Be felt within thine heart in all its force; For they who drown it, and go on unheeding,
Must feel the hopeless pangs of deep remorse.
Then listen to its truthful accents, telling
Of sins perchance—but yet of pardon too. Pray; and the gloom it casts will be dispelling,
For Christ the broken spirit can renew. Farnham.
RAY'S TOME AT BLACK NOTLEY.
(See the Frontispiece.) “The name of John Ray, which has long been widely known and as widely honored by the man of science
and especially by the naturalist who owes to him so much, as the great master of his craft
t-seems to brighten with age, and shaking off the cobwebs of time, which, ere now, would have obscured merits less sterling, to render his lowly resting-place at Black Notley more attractive to the philosophic and learned pilgrim. Societies are springing up and spreading, in honor of the man
" Who drew, with careful hand and curious eye,
And Science thron'd where Error reign'd before." We have to record a visit, paid a few years since by some of the wise and distinguished of the land to the tomb of the great lover of, and explorer into, the boundless beauties of nature's creative work. And, indeed, the great naturalist is worthy of all this. “The name of Ray,” says a writer, “will ever be revered by the wise and the good,
from the use he made of his extensive knowledge of nature. His “Wisdom of God manifested in the Works of the Creation' was the first attempt, we believe, ever made in the Christian era to confirm the truth of revealed religion by facts drawn from the natural world. Another of his works, Persuasives to a Holy Life,' shows us also how deeply his pure and pious spirit was imbued with those truths he taught to others. None but a philosopher could have written the first: none but a Christian, the second.
“The party who visited all that remains-save his immortal works—of this foremost of our Essex worthies, was composed of members of the Linnæan Society, by whom this excursion to the spot, where the 'amiable and gentle Ray' first drew his breath, and where he closed the last years of his useful career, had been long contemplated. A party, headed by the Lord Bishop of Norwich, left the metropolis by the first railway train in the morning, for Witham, where they were joined by the proprietor of the house in which Ray spent his last days.
Proceeding in carriages to Black Notley, which is about six miles distant from Witham, the parties reached the village church about twelve o'clock. This edifice is an old plain tiled building, with rather a picturesque wooden spire, and stands in a delightfully rural situation. On the south side of the church, rest the mortal remains of one of the greatest of British naturalists. The tomb is of a pyramidal form, from ten to twelve feet high, and is inscribed with an elegant Latin epitaph, from the pen of the Rev. William Coyte, m. A. It is in good preservation, but the inscription is rather illegible from the gnawing of time, and we understand that the Linnæan Society intend to restore that portion of it, and preserve it for future enthusiastic inquirers after the 'lettered stone. This monument was, of course, the chief object of interest and attraction,
and many lingered for a considerable time round the memorial of the distinguished dead, several copying the inscription, and Professor Forbes took a clever sketch of
Many of the party visited the interior of the church in which Ray had been baptised—rambled about the village-or culled botanical specimens as an appropriate memento of their visit. The Bishop of Norwich appeared to take especial interest in the scene, making many inquiries as to the birth-place of the great naturalist. His lordship was obliged to leave early, and after visiting Ray's residence, he proceeded to Witham to take the train to London.
“Having made a pleasurable hour upon a scene where everything derived interest from the reflection that these fields had been traversed, and these paths trodden, and the botanical treasures of the neighbourhood ransacked in search of knowledge, by him who slumbered there, the party, about one o'clock, assembled at Dewlands, the house from which Ray's pure spirit took its final flight, in the year 1705. It is now a farmhouse, occupied by Mr. Wakeling. After an elegant cold collation, Mr. Pattisson the proprietor of Dewlands, read the following extract from Mr. Ray's diary, to show the meek spirit of Christianity with which Ray was imbued :
“ 'March 15, 1678, departed this life, my most dear and honored mother, Elizabeth Ray, of Black Notley, in her house, on Dewlands, in the hall chamber, about three of the clock in the afternoon, aged, as I suppose, seventyeight; whose death, for some considerations, was a great wound to me.
Yet have I good hope that her soul is received to the mercy of God, and her sins pardoned, through the merits and mediation of Jesus Christ, in whom she trusted, and whose servant she had been from her youth up. The company after exploring the old house, 'treading the very boards which Ray had trodden, and looking perhaps on trees and plants which Ray had admired,' before they separated, recorded their signatures in a work belonging to Mr. Pattisson, 'Derham's Life and Remains of Ray,' which will, doubtless, be treasured as an interesting memento of the visit.—Lankester's Memorials of Ray.
THE LIVING RILL. It is worthy of remark, that the progress of our little rill, in the latter part of its course at least, appears to have been restricted by Providence to very narrow bounds. Horace was not enabled, as far as is seen, effectually to impart the knowledge of the truth committed to him, to any other person than to the feeble-minded Jocelyn, from whom the child Barbara receiving it through divine grace, was permitted to convey it to Emmeline, who being mixed up, when she had lost her little friend, with persons devoted to the world, was excluded for a time, from using her influence with any one, until the grace imparted to her, from on high, enabled her, through its divine heat, to melt the ice which bound up her father's affections, and closed his heart even to his own sweet child.
As it afterwards appeared, her father then, directly, and Damien (the youth so often spoken of before, who when the captain began to ail was often in attendance in his chamber) indirectly, were the only persons exposed to her influence, and granting that she was blessed to the utmost, in being empowered from above, during the short time which was allowed her, to pour the full tide of truth into their breasts: what can the reader anticipate, when he reads the following paragraph copied from a newspaper dated in the month of September, during the short peace of Amiens, in the very early part of the present century, but that our little series must cease in this place.
The paragraph alluded to, relates the loss of the “ Arethusa" Captain Harper, bound for Madeira, on such a night, in a late tremendous hurricane, the vessel having been driven on the rocks of Scilly, and every soul on board being believed to have perished. Among the passengers mentioned were Captain Loveday of the Royal Navy, late commander of the Hebe, and his affectionate