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BY BRYCE JOHNSTON, D. D.
MINISTER OF THE GOSPEL AT HOLYWOOD.
A NEW Edition.
TO WHICH IS ADDED,
A MEMOIR OF THE LIFE OF THE AUTHOR,
THE events which bofal a country clergyman are seldom sufficiently striking and diversified to engage the re earth of the biographer, or to gratify the curiosity which may lead to the perusal of his pagos. His personal improvement and prefucional dutics are his chief employmente; and it is within the precincts of his own family, and the
narrow circle of his friends, that he unbends. his mind, and is furnished with opportunities of exhibiting the appropriate features of his character. His situation is not calculated to bring into exercise those passions by which the men of the world are roused to exertions which arrest its notice; and these passions, if he feels the power of the doctrines which he is bound to investigate and to teach, he is irresistibly determined to restrain and subdue. Seldom can he attain celebrity, while the ho nour which men bestow is postponed in his esteem to that which cometh from God. Seldom can he rise above dependance, while the rules of his order, his principles, and his voluntary engagements, forbid the use of those means by which he might augment the scanty revenue which the law hath provided.
But though these remarks admit of general application in the Scottish Church, some of her members, by the force of superior talents, or by peculiar circumstances in their lot, have been found to move in a less hainble sphere. Of this description, was the subject of the following Memoir.
For more than a century, his family have possessed a small estate within the royalty of Annan, in the county of Dumfries, and have successively been in the magistracy and coun cil of that burgh. His father, John Johnston of Gutterbraes, repeatedly filled the of fice of Provost or chief Magistrate; and by his fidelity and uprightness in that station, and by the virtues which adorned his private cha→ racter, acquired very considerable reputation and influence, and preserved them entire to the close of life. He married Elizabeth, daughter of the Rev. Thomas Howie minister of Annan, the savor of whose name is still dear to those by whom his zeal and diligence are remembered. The offspring of this marriage were eight sons and two daughters. Bryce, the youngest of the sons, was born at Annan March 2. 1747. At a very early period, he discovered a strong predilection for the profession of his maternal grandfather; and seemed even then to have had it put into his heart to form a resolution, which his parents had no wish to oppose, and in which, as he advanced in years, che was firm