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Their lot forbade; nor circumscribed alone

Their growing virtues, but their crimes confined; Forbade to wade through slaughter to a throne, And shut the gates of mercy on mankind.

The struggling pangs of conscious truth to hide,
To quench the blushes of ingenuous shame,
Or heap the shrine of Luxury and Pride

With incense kindled at the Muse's flame.

Far from the madding crowd's ignoble strife,
Their sober wishes never learned to stray;
Along the cool sequestered vale of life

They kept the noiseless tenor of their way.

Yet even these bones from insult to protect,
Some frail memorial still erected nigh,

With uncouth rhymes and shapeless sculpture decked, Implores the passing tribute of a sigh.

Their name, their years, spelt by the unlettered muse,
The place of fame and elegy supply;

And many a holy text around she strews,
That teach the rustic moralist to die.

For who, to dumb Forgetfulness a prey,

This pleasing, anxious being e'er resigned,
Left the warm precincts of the cheerful day,
Nor cast one longing, lingering look behind?

On some fond breast the parting soul relies,
Some pious drops the closing eye requires;
Even from the tomb the voice of nature crics,
Even in our ashes live their wonted fires.

For thee, who, mindful of the unhonoured dead,
Dost in these lines their artless tale relate;
If chance, by lonely contemplation led,

Some kindred spirit shall inquire thy fate;

Haply some hoary-headed swain may say,
"Oft have we seen him at the peep of dawn
Brushing with hasty steps the dews away,
To meet the sun upon the upland lawn.

There at the foot of yonder nodding beech
That wreathes its old fantastic roots so high,
His listless length at noontide would he stretch,
And pore upon the brook that babbles by.

Hard by yon wood, now smiling as in scorn,
Muttering his wayward fancies he would rove;
Now drooping, woful, wan, like one forlorn,

Or crazed with care, or crossed in hopeless love.

One morn I missed him on the accustomed hill,
Along the heath and near his favourite tree;
Another came; nor yet beside the rill,

Nor up the lawn, nor at the wood was he;

The next, with dirges due in sad array

Slow through the church-way path we saw him borne: Approach and read (for thou canst read) the lay Graved on the stone beneath yon aged thorn."


Here rests his head upon the lap of earth,
A youth, to Fortune and to Fame unknown;
Fair Science frowned not on his humble birth,
And Melancholy marked him for her own.

Large was his bounty, and his soul sincere,
Heaven did a recompense as largely send :

He gave to Misery all he had, a tear,

He gained from Heaven ('twas all he wished) a friend.

No farther seek his merits to disclose,

Or draw his frailties from their dread abode

(There they alike in trembling hope repose),

The bosom of his Father and his God.

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CHARLES WESLEY, the author of hymns of which some are unsurpassed by any in the language, was the younger brother of the famous John Wesley, and born at Epworth, in Lincolnshire, December 18, 1708. For many years he shared his brother's labours, voyages, and travels. "For the space of ten years," says a Wesleyan biographer, "we must admit that his ministry was like a flame of fire." He died March 29, 1788, almost in the act of poetical composition :

"In age and feebleness extreme,

Who shall a helpless worm redeem ?
Jesus! my only hope thou art,

Strength of my fainting flesh and heart.
Oh! could I catch a smile from Thee,
And drop into eternity!"

The following hymns are fairly representative of his impassioned and fervid muse.

The one entitled "Wrest

ling Jacob," exhibits a certain startling but sublime audacity of faith.


Jesu, lover of my soul,

Let me to thy bosom fly,

While the nearer waters roll,

While the tempest still is high;

Hide me, O my Saviour, hide,
Till the storm of life be past;
Safe into the haven guide,

O receive my soul at last!

Other refuge have I none,
Hangs my helpless soul on Thee,
Leave, ah! leave me not alone,
Still support and comfort me!
All my trust on Thee is stayed;
All my help from Thee I bring;
Cover my defenceless head

With the shadow of thy wing.

Wilt Thou not regard my call ? Wilt Thou not accept my prayer? Lo! I sink, I faint, I fall!

Lo! on Thee I cast my care! Reach me out thy gracious hand! While I of thy strength receive, Hoping against hope I stand, Dying, and behold I live!

Thou, O Christ, art all I want;
More than all in Thee I find:
Raise the fallen, cheer the faint,
Heal the sick, and lead the blind:
Just and holy is thy name;
I am all unrighteousness;
False and full of sin I am;

Thou art full of truth and grace.

Plenteous grace with Thee is found,
Grace to cover all my sin;
Let the healing streams abound;
Make and keep me pure within!
Thou of life the fountain art,
Freely let me take of Thee;
Spring Thou up within my heart!
Rise to all eternity!


O for a heart to praise my God,
A heart from sin set free!
A heart that always feels thy blood,
So freely shed for me!

A heart resigned, submissive, meek,
My great Redeemer's throne;
Where only Christ is heard to speak,
Where Jesus reigns alone.

A humble, lowly, contrite heart,
Believing, true, and clean,

Which neither life nor death can part
From Him that dwells within.

A heart in every thought renewed,
And full of love divine;

Perfect, and right, and pure, and good,
A copy, Lord, of thine.

Thy tender heart is still the same,
And melts at human woe;

Jesus, for Thee distressed I am,

I want thy love to know.

My heart, Thou knowest, can never rest,

Till Thou create my peace;

Till, of my Eden re-possest,

From every sin I cease.

Fruit of thy gracious lips, on me
Bestow that peace unknown,
The hidden manna, and the tree
Of life, and the white stone.

Thy nature, gracious Lord, impart;
Come quickly from above;

Write thy new name upon my heart,
Thy new, best name of Love.

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