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ing, 'Take as little of it as you can, to go through the world decently.' And I really believe that the regulation of the heart will do more for us than the reasonings of the head. Do lay yours by for a little while, and let it rest. Farewell. My love to Patty, Nancy, and the Squire.'




"Good Lord! How are Thy ways,

Just like Thy orbs, involved within each other;
Thy judgments are like comets

Which start, affright, and die withal;

While Thy mercies are like the stars,

Which ofttimes are obscured,

But still remain the same behind the clouds !"

THE winter of 1799 Mary Anne spent in London. The extreme delicacy of her health, and the great susceptibility of her organisation, seem to have rendered frequent change of air and scene necessary. Her parents placed her at this time, for the winter months, with Mrs. Beaver, a lady then residing in Dover Street, Piccadilly, who received some few young people of good family, whom she introduced into society. Mrs. Schimmel Penninck often spoke with warm pleasure of her intercourse with the young companions she found there. Some amongst them were highly accomplished, especially in the cultivation of the fine arts, and I have heard her dwell with delight on the recollection of evening hours passed in listening to their music. While

in Dover Street, she renewed her intercourse with Mrs. Barbauld, the Edgeworth family, and other literary people; but this period does not seem to have been otherwise influential.

There are many early records of the "views, desires, and resolves" of the subject of this memoir. For the most part, they are contained in fragments of journals. It is deeply interesting as well as instructive to trace in these private memoranda the germ of what, by the grace of God, she afterwards became. Even in lesser things, this is striking.

In a record of what she terms "Desultory Reflections," begun probably when she was about eighteen, are found the following passages. "As far as in me lies, I will never be without occupation, and that of a useful kind." And again,-"Whatever I undertake I will perform in the best possible

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Those who knew her in later life saw the fruit of these resolves in the habitual industry which so remarkably characterised her, not only through the course of a long life, even to old age, but often in circumstances of illness, trial, or bodily suffering, which with most of us would have seemed a just cause for idleness. The much she did, and the much she acquired, was no doubt in part owing to this uncommon degree of industry; and yet, no less, per

haps, was it owing to the integrity of mind she had learnt in childhood from her mother. She speaks of it in her autobiography as "being," not "seeming;" and in this spirit she ever gave her whole mind to whatever she had in hand. If she read, or heard reading, not a word, much less a thought, escaped her; and even after she had exceeded the three score and ten years allotted to man, few, if any of those around her, gleaned half as much as she did from the book read. It was probably owing not only to her retentive and accurate memory, but to these causes also, that she was indebted for her enlarged information on almost every subject that could be brought before her.

Then again, in the same record, we find, "I will always dress as neatly as possible, having frequently observed that ill humour for the whole day has been owing to the petty discomforts of a slovenly dress. Besides, neatness in dress both indicates and assists regulation of character.”

She was wont to say, that "strict attention to habits of personal neatness and propriety were due as a mark of respect to those with whom we lived, and, as such, were no indifferent item in the (so-called) little things which compose the happiness of domestic life." But to proceed in these extracts. She says,"It is far more effectual to build on the good, than to oppose the bad affections of others."

"There is no knowledge so useful and so difficult to acquire as that of our own feelings and character and the circumstances which can best influence them. Madame Roland, in her appeal, very justly, I think, observes, that self-possession is much more a science which is to be acquired than any endowment of preternatural strength of mind. God has given to every one, I suppose, the sense and dispositions necessary to act his part well, but owing to some want of self-knowledge of what circumstances are calculated to influence their feelings, people rarely seem to have the guidance of their own conduct. They resemble connoisseurs in music, who, nevertheless, from not understanding their instrument, strike the contrary tone to that they wish to produce. Every one who wishes to act uniformly must not only understand the duties of man, but also the construction of his own peculiar mind; in the same manner as the musician must not only have a knowledge of music, but also of his instrument."


"I will endeavour to weigh as accurately as I can every thing in which I am called upon to act; and having weighed it to the best of my ability, I will take a decided part, and abide firmly by it."

"We love the works of nature, for they are God's works: how much more ought we to love man, which is God's chief work.”

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