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was. In our time, one well-filled and well-covered stage-coach requires more accommodation than a royal progress; and every district, at an hour's warning, can supply an army.
I do not say, sir, that all these establishments, whose principle is gone, have been systematically kept up for influence solely; neglect had its share. But this I am sure of, that a consideration of influence has hindered any one from attempting to pull them down. For the purposes of influence, and for those purposes only, are retained half, at least, of the household establishments. No revenue, no, not a royal revenue, can exist under the accumulated charge of ancient establishment, modern luxury, and parliamentary political corruption.
If, therefore, we aim at regulating this household, the question will be, whether we ought to economise by detail or by principle. The example we have had of the success of an attempt to economise by detail, and under establishments adverse to the attempt, may tend to decide this question.
At the beginning of his majesty's reign, Lord Talbot came to the administration of a great depar ment in the household. I believe no man ever entered into his majesty's service, or into the service of any prince, with more clear integrity, or with more zeal and affection for the interest of his master; and, I must add, with abilities for a still higher service. Economy was then announced as a maxim of the reign. This noble lord, therefore, made several attempts towards a reform. In the year 1777, when the king's civil-list debts came last to be paid, he explained very fully the success of his undertaking. He told the House of Lords that he had attempted to reduce the charges of the king's tables, and his kitchen. The thing, sir, was not below him. He knew that there is nothing interesting in the concerns of men whom we love and honour that is beneath our attention. "Love," says
one of our old poets, "esteems no office mean ;" and, with still more spirit, "entire affection scorneth nicer hands." Frugality, sir, is founded on the principle that all riches have limits. A royal household, grown enormous even in the meanest departments, may weaken and perhaps destroy all energy in the highest
offices of the state. The gorging a royal kitchen may stin. and famish the negotiations of a kingdom. Therefore the object was worthy of his, was worthy of any man's attention.
In consequence of this noble lord's resolution (as he told the other House) he reduced several tables, and put the persons entitled to them upon board wages, much to their own satisfaction. But unluckily, subsequent duties requiring constant attendance, it was not possible to prevent their being fed where they were employed, and thus this first step towards economy doubled the expense.
There was another disaster far more doleful than this. I shall state it, as the cause of that misfortune lies at the bottom of all our prodigality. Lord Talbot attempted to reform the kitchen; but such, as he well observed, is the consequence of having duty done by one person, whilst another enjoys the emoluments, that he found himself frustrated in all his designs. On that rock his whole adventure split-his whole scheme of economy was dashed to pieces; his department became more expensive than ever; the civil-list debt accumulated-Why? It was truly from a cause which, though perfectly adequate to the effect, one would no have instantly guessed-it was because the turnspit in the king's kitchen was a member of parliament. The king's domestic servants were all undone; his tradesmen remained unpaid, and became bankrupt because the turnspit of the king's kitchen was a member of parliament. His majesty's slumbers were interrupted, his pillow was stuffed with thorns, and his peace of mind entirely brokenbecause the king's turnspit was a member of parliament. The judges were unpaid; the justice of the kingdom bent and gave way; the foreign ministers remained inactive and unprovided; the system of Europe was dissolved; the chain of our alliances was broken, all the wheels of government at home and abroad were stopped -because the king's turnspit was a member of parliament.
On the New Testament.
[PHILIP DODDRIDGE was born in 1702; died in 1751. His family were of that numerous and respectable body of Nonconformists who seceded from the Church soon after the restoration of Charles II. Doddridge was educated for the ministry; and became one of the most distinguished of that body. His. early death was lamented not only by those of his own persuasion, but by all zealous and earnest Christians. His works, amongst which are "The Rise and Progress of Religion in the Soul," and "The Family Expositor," are monuments of his deep piety and unaffected eloquence.]
I have long been convinced that if anything can stop that progress of infidelity and vice, which every wise man beholds with sorrow and fear, that if anything can allay those animosities which (unnatural as they are) have so long inflamed us, and pained the heart of every generous Christian; in a word, that if anything can establish the purity and honour, the peace and glory of the Church, or spread the triumphs of personal and domestic religion among us, it must be an attentive study of the Word of God, and especially of the New Testament, that best of books; which, if read with impartiality and seriousness, under the influences of that blessed Spirit by whom it was inspired, would have the noblest tendency to enlighten and adorn the mind, and not only to touch, but to animate and transform the heart.
The New Testament is a book written with the most consummate knowledge of human nature; and though there are a thousand latent beauties in it, which it is the business and glory of true criticism to place in a strong point of light, the general sense and design of it is plain to every honest reader, even at the very first perusal. It is evidently intended to bring us to God through Christ, in a humble dependence on the communication of His sanctifying and quickening Spirit; and to engage us to a course of faithful and universal obedience, chiefly from a grateful sense of the riches of Divine grace, manifested to us in the gospel. And though this scheme is indeed liable to abuse, as everything
else is, it appears to me plain in fact, that it has been, and still is, the grand instrument of reforming a very degenerate world; and, according to the best observations I have been able to make on what has passed about me, or within my own breast, I have found that, in proportion to the degree in which this evangelical scheme is received and relished, the interest of true virtue and holiness flourished, and the mind is formed to manly devotion, diffusive benevolence, steady fortitude, and, in short, made ready to every good word and work.
We have here the authentic records of that gospel which was intended as the great medicine for our souls! of that character which is our pattern; of that death which is our ransom; of Him, in short, whose name we bear, as we are professed Christians; and before whose tribunal we are all shortly to appear, that our eternal existence may be determined, blissful or miserable, according to our regard for what He has taught, and done, and endured. Let not the greatest, therefore, think it beneath their notice; nor the meanest imagine, that amidst all the most necessary cares and labours, they can find any excuse for neglecting or for even postponing it.
Had I not been fully convinced of the importance of Christianity, I should not have determined to devote my whole life to its service, (for, on the principles of natural religion, I know the soul to be immortal, and should expect nothing but its ruin in the ways of the most sanctified fraud;) but as I am thus conrinced, I must make it my humble request to every one that enters on the perusal of these volumes, that they may, for a little while at least, be the employment of his retired hours; and that, as he proceeds from one section to another, he would pause and reflect, "Whose words do I hear? Whose actions do I survey? Whose sufferings do I contemplate?" And as all must know they are the words, the actions, and the sufferings of Jesus the Son of God, our supreme Lord, and our final Judge, let it be further, and very seriously inquired, in what degree the obvious and confessed design of the glorious gospel has been practically regarded and complied with: "Can I, in my heart, think that I
am a disciple, whom such a Master will approve, and whom He will choose for His attendant in that world of glory to which He is now gone?" Let the plainness of this advice be forgiven; for such is the temper and conduct of most who call themselves Christians, that, if this religion be true, their cold and unaffecting knowledge of the history of Christ, and of the purposes of His appearance, will only serve to furnish out matter for eternal selfaccusation and remorse: and he is at best but a learned and polite infidel, who would not rather be the instrument of conducting the lowest creature, capable of reading or hearing these lines, to the saving knowledge of a crucified Redeemer, than fill the most refined nation with his own applause, while the grace of the Saviour is forgotten, or His service neglected.
As what I now present to the reader concludes the historical part of the New Testament, I here fulfil the promise which I long since made, of offering some remarks on the excellence and usefulness of that history; which may dispose the reader more frequently to review it, and to study it with the greater application.
It must be universally granted, that the excellence of any performance is to be estimated by considering its design, and the degree in which it is calculated to answer it. The design of the gospel history is summed up in the words which I have placed for my motto; which, though they are taken from the conclusion of St John's Gospel, are applicable, not only to all the other Evangelists, but likewise to the Acts of the Apostles, that invaluable appendix to them. "These things are written, that ye might believe that Jesus is the Christ, the Son of God, and that believing ye might have life through his name."
I shall beg leave to show how admirably the history before us is calculated to answer both these ends: viz., to produce a conviction of the truth of Christianity, and to make those good impressions on the heart, which may secure the eternal life and happiness of the reader; which no speculative conviction, even of the most sublime, comprehensive, and important truths, will itself be able to do. I apprehend, that in proportion to the degree in which these two premises can be illustrated, the excel