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State than for the interest of the Church that the ancient connection between these institutions should be maintained. On politics he has many things to say well worthy of being gravely pondered. “When we consider,” he remarks, “how absorbing is the spirit of party, how it iends systematically to conceal or pervert truth, the false guise with which it invests its own views and misrepresents those of others, how uncertain a test is public opinion, and how difficult to ascertain even were it a safe rule, it is evident with what caution the mind must be prepared to form its own judgment, and take its own course. . . . He who seeks, then, to settle his political faith by an enlightened Christian standard, finds true wisdom to lie between extreme opinions; and, while he considers a reckless craving for change as amongst the dangerous signs of the times, he knows how fruitless it is to look for fixity in any of the affairs of a fleeting and mutable world.”
Colzium House bears two characteristics of Sir Archibald's special tastes—its library and its chapel. The former fills two large rooms, and is a most valuable collection of the works of standard authors in English and French. He was of opinion a man could bequeath to successive generations of his family no better legacy than a judicious selection from the works of the good, the learned, the wise. In this valuable collection, theology, history, and travel are the most fully represented. Next to these, poetry, biography, and heraldry.
But the chapel is even more a mark of the man than the library. He was a strong High Churchman, hinging much on the efficacy of baptismal regeneration and not so much on apostolical succession. He believed in the orderly observance of the Christian feasts, and in the systematic views which they presented of Christian doc
trine and life. In his “Family Lectures for Holy Seasons,” which originally appeared in the Scottish Magazine in the years 1849 and 1850, Sir Archibald gives a compendium of religious instruction of which the most learned and devout clergyman of the Anglican Church might well have been proud. “Short Readings on the Collects,” a thick octavo volume of 500 pp., was published in 1861. It treats also, in a methodical manner, of the doctrines of the Church and of saints' days, but its chief value consists in the fulness and richness of its spiritual substance. It is a guide to holy living, an encouragement to perseverance in welldoing. It seeks to help the devout soul somewhat further on “ in the narrow way that leadeth unto life eternal.” The reader is impressed as by the utterance of a supremely placid, but supremely earnest spirit. Here and there throughout the book there are found such sentences, such little glimpses of spiritual insight, as this : “The poorer we are in our own sight the more precious we become in His ; and in proportion as we are alive to the corruption of our nature are we preparing for its restoration in Him."
Sir Archibald Edmonstone ministered, layman though he was, in his little chapel Sunday after Sunday. These volumes represent only a small part of the work he did there. He left a large number of sermons in manuscript, beautiful as to the writing, most carefully composed, and with the great doctrines of grace simply and faithfully set forth. Ranked along with the impetuous Livingstons, with the fervid Robe, with the sagacious Rennie, the staid Burns, the gentle Douglas, his personality adds a special interest to that group of theological worthies and pastors. While Sir Archibald lived at Colzium, his literary audience lay wholly beyond the Tweed. Whilst he lived, his devotion to letters was almost unknown in Kilsyth. It is also probable that if it had been known it would have remained unappreciated. Strange to say, Sir Archibald's High Churchmanship, however, in no way cut him off from the sympathies of the parishioners. Those who cared nothing about baptismal regeneration loved that kindly Christianity which they saw enshrined in his person, and which outflowed in every direction in works of mercy and labours of love. His interest in the spiritual work carried on in the parish was sincere. During the revival of 1839, he addressed a letter to the people of Kilsyth. Its language and spirit mark it the production of a member of the church catholic. As a witness to the reality and power of that revival it is of the utmost value, and I make no apology for quoting it entire :
“MY DEAR FRIENDS,—I am unwilling to allow the present period to pass by without, as one deeply interested in your welfare, addressing to you a few words. As soon as I learned the real nature of what was taking place among you, I felt justified in acknowledging that the hand of God was at work, and in thankfully believing that in the mysteries of His Providence it had pleased Him to visit your highly favoured locality in a peculiar and marked manner. Subsequent accounts have confirmed this, and the conviction that the sound of the Gospel is gone forth to the effectual wakening of not a few from the fatal sleep of sin and death into the glorious hope of everlasting life, is a cause of rejoicing in which we are assured even the blessed spirits participate. Very many, I am told, have lately, by a strong impulse, been induced suddenly to stop short in the course of thoughtlessness, perhaps of profligacy, and to seek with deep and anxious inquiry, the road that leadeth to salvation, My friends, this is a happy sign! Divine grace, I doubt not, is acting upon your souls; but allow me, affectionately, though earnestly, to remind you that the necessity of your convictions can only be ascertained by the fruits. A saving faith is that which worketh by love. The test is obedience, and that not partial but entire ; not merely the renouncing of the open and grosser vices, but the striving with and praying against, and, in due time, the obtaining the mastery over the more secret and inward corruptions of the heart. Thus, becoming true and faithful servants of God, ye have your fruit unto holiness, and the end everlasting
“My friends, these things I confidently hope from you, and let me, moreover, urge upon you to implant deeply and betimes, the seeds of truth into the hearts of your children, that they may grow up in the nurture and admonition of the Lord,' ere the ground be preoccupied by thorn and briers. It will save both them and you much bitterness and sorrow, and thus doing, you may be instruments, with the blessing of God, of peopling the mansions of heaven to succeeding generations. I do not know when the object which has for a time taken me from my home, namely, the health of one who fully participates in the feeling with which I am now writing, will enable me to return; but, whenever that may be the case, the happy change I shall hope to witness among the inhabitants of Kilsyth, will be one of the objects to which I shall look forward with the warmest satisfaction.
“Cordially congratulating, therefore, your worthy minister, in the cheering promise afforded to his long and faithful labours, and your collectively, on the perfect opening before you of walking henceforth as a community fearing the Lord !-Believe me, “Your very sincere friend and well-wisher,
“ARCHIBALD EDMONSTONE. “London, October 12th, 1839."
The journal of Sir Archibald Edmonstone's travels through France, Switzerland, Italy, Greece, Egypt, Syria, and Turkey, is contained in two bulky volumes. Able to speak French, German, and Italian, with a mind richly stored with classical learning, and with introductions to those of the highest position, he got ready access to everything curious or interesting, and to all illustrious and distinguished persons connected with the places visited. Every page of this work is full of information or entertainment. Leaving London on Monday, the 14th September, 1818, he crossed from Dover to Calais. At the Court of the Tuileries he was presented to Louis XVIII. In Paris he inspected with equal interest the rare books of the Bibliothèque du Roi, and Barthelemi's collection of coins, said to be the finest in the world. Passing through Burgundy, he remembered that Gibbon observed that the vintage was celebrated in the days of the Antonines. At Clarens he meditated on the mingled good and evil in the character and writings of Rousseau. Chillon afforded him the opportunity of comparing the castle with the description of Byron. Among the Swiss he recalled the apt description of Goldsmith, “How the loud torrent and the whirlwind's roar but bind them to their native mountains more.” On the plain of Lombardy he saw the vines clinging to the elms as in the days of Virgil. · At Bologna he met the world-renowned Mezzofanti. Sir Archibald writes: “One of the curiosities here, is a