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8. The Bishop of Tuam's Christian Knowledge, prefented to the Apprentices,

9. The Importance of Thinking it is the higheft Character to be a good Chriftian,

PRUDENTIAL INSTRUCTION s.

6. A faithful Apprentice, will make a good Mafter,

7. Careful Attention to the Condition of Indentures, the best Way to promote your Fortune,

8. The Duty of Kindness and Affection to Fellow-apprentices and others,

9. The great Danger and Folly of Enmity,

10. The Folly of refenting Injuries and believing malicious Reports,

11. The Duty to Parents,

12. Indufiry promotes Marriage,

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20

ib

ib

ib.

ib.

39

ib.

13. The Importance of taking Care of Children,

14. The Advantage which may arise in excelling other Apprentices, 15. Prudence and Thriftiness, the best Guard of Integrity,

16. How far Attention to Gain is juft and right,

17. The Abfurdity of growing vicious under Misfortunes, 18. Evil Accidents may be turned to our Advantage,

19. Life is a mixed State of Good and Evil,

20. The true Object of the Ambition of the human Mind,

21. The Duty we owe to the Public in our pecuniary Engagements with it,

22. The truest Expression of Love to God and our Country, is to reform our own Manners,

23. The Folly of Refentments against our Country,

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Copy of Indenture,

State of Accounts, from May 1758, to May 1759, Lift of the Stewards, from 1674, to 1760,

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XV111. In Sickness,
XIX. In the fame,

xx. In the fame,
XXI. In the fame,

XX11. Against the Fear of Death,

4, For Industry, Refignation, Morning and Even-
ing, and my Country.
xx111. For Industry and Refignation to
Providence,

XXIV. For the fame,
xxv. For the Morning.
XXVI. For the fame,
XXVII. For the Evening,

XXV111. For the fame,

XXIX. For my Country,
xxx. For the fame,

5. For Contentment, Fidelity, Obedience, and Attendance on the Sacrament.

32

ib.

33

34

ib.

35

ib.

ib.

36

ib.

37

ib.

38

ib.

Page

47

ib.

ib.

39

ib.

ib.

48

ib.

49

ib.

50

ib.

51

ib.

52

ib.

XXXI. For Contentment,

XXX11. For Fidelity to my Mafter,
Xxx111. For Obedience to my Mafier,

XXXIV. For Piety and Attention on the

Sacrament,

íb.

53

ib.

54

55

56

57

INTRODUCTIO N.

A

LTHOUGH the inftitution of the STEPNEY FEAST, or SOCIETY is of great antiquity, it does not appear that any proper information, concerning it, has been ever given to the public; a short account of this charity will therefore afford fome fatisfaction to the curious and inquifitive. At the fame time, those who have often contributed to the fupport of it, may poffibly conceive so much the higher idea of the object of their own munificence; and fuch perfons as are always ready to promote the welfare of their country and mankind, will probably find reason fufficient to induce them to bestow some marks of their generosity and patriotism, on so benevolent and useful a design.

In examining the register of the Stewards of the Feast, which feems to have been accidentally preserved, we find the first affociation was as far back as 1674, at the close of the Dutch war. This fraternity was chiefly composed of masters of ships, whose charity and public love induced them to make a collection, with a view to apprentice out orphans, and the children of the poor, to marine trades, which would neceffarily render many young perfons useful in that way of life, in which the masters themselves had fo particular an interest. The attempt, however, after two years, ceased for four years, unless we fuppofe the names of the stewards of those years are loft. Deferving as the object of this fociety might be, the two great wars that fucceeded not long after, joined to other reafons, for which it is hard, at this distance, to affign the cause, occafioned two other chasms or discontinuations of the undertaking, one of them of four, the other of Seven years, so that upon this view, fifteen years in the first five and fifty were expunged the annals of the Stepney Society.

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It was not till 1729, that Sir Charles Wager patronized the design, and gave it a reputation, in the efteem of many, efpecially fea-faring people. All the world. knows to what high honors it pleafed divine providence to conduct this gentleman, and that he was not lefs exemplary for his munificence to the poor, than diftinguished for his abilities as a great fea-officer. His zeal for this object, continued to the end of his life: and we find that from the ara above-mentioned perfons of the first rank and fortune in these kingdoms, have accepted the office of Stewards to the Feaft. The Lords of the Admiralty, the Navy-board, the Victualling-office, and other departments of the marine, have conftantly fhewn their favor to it, and this has naturally drawn together many others. In the mean while those whofe traffic confifts in materials for fhip-building, and mafters, or workmen employed by mafters, in the merchants fhip-yards, have the fairest opportunities of seeing the real benefits arising from the inftitution, and confequently esteem it no less a duty, than a pleasure, to accept the invitation to the feast, made at the expence of the stewards.

BUT the fociety has been more particularly indebted to the first Lord of the Admiralty, in fucceffion down from Sir Charles Wager: thefe Lords have been always confidered as Prefidents of the Society, and fometimes fo entitled. LORD ANSON has often given the strongest proofs of his zeal and liberality, and is now pleafed to accept the name and office of Prefident; and it is under the aufpices of his lordship, that the design has been very much improved, and will probably be rendered yet more refpectable, when peace fhall give more employment to marine trades in merchants fhip-yards.

EVERY perfon in this nation is qualified, in fome degree, to judge of the benefits arifing from the augmentation of our shipping, the number of our artificers, the extention of our commerce, with the encreafe of fea-faring people, and the national ability arifing from hence to defend our religion, laws, and liberty. It is from this fource fo many advantages, fo many heart-felt comforts arife in the breast of our fellow-fubjects; but particularly in the minds of those who know from experience,

the

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