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“the diamond in his ring.” As she grew up, her early dispositions took the form of a cheerful activity and obligingness, which exceedingly endeared her to her friends, whilst her happy and contented piety was constantly reminding them that wisdom's ways are pleasantness. She used to spend much of the Sabbath in singing psalms of praise ; and the kindliness of her nature, and her loving confidence in the goodness of the Lord, made her visits a peculiar comfort in the house of mourning. And, lest God's mercies should slip out of memory, she used to mark them down. The following is one list of “Family Mercies.”_ “The house preserved from fire, June 1690; the family begun to be built up; children preserved from the perils of infancy. Two of my near relations' children taken off quickly by death; mine of the same age spared, March 1693. One child of a dear friend burnt to death; another neighbour's child drowned lately; yet mine preserved. One of the children preserved from a dangerous fall down a pair of stairs into the street; the recovery of both of them from the small-pox, May 1695. Both recovered from a malignant fever when they had been given up; at the same time two servants brought low by it, yet raised up. Ourselves preserved from the same distemper, when two dear relations, mother and daughter, fell by it. Wonder of mercy not to be forgotten.” It was of this fever, and within a few weeks of one another, that Mrs. Hutton and her sister Radford died, in 1697. It was a time of heavy trial in a once circle, for their venerated father had died the year before. “ Yet God is good,” was the dying testimony of this meek believer, and she entreated that none would think the


worse of family religion for the afflictions which had followed so fast on them. “I am not weary of living, but I am weary of sinning. I would live as Christ lives, and where Christ lives, and that I am sure will be heaven.'

This was the pious family in which Matthew HENRY was born. Of these intelligent and affectionate sisters he was the only brother, and of those godly parents he was the eldest surviving child. He was born at Broad Oak, Oct. 18, 1662.

When three years old it is said that he could read the Bible distinctly, and he early showed a strong passion for books. Lest he should injure his health by excessive application, his mother was frequently obliged to drag the little student from his closet, and chase him out into the fields. He had for his tutor Mr. Turner, a young man who then lived at Broad Oak, and who afterwards published a folio volume of “Remarkable Providences;” but whether Mr. Turner had then acquired his taste for extraordinary narratives, or whether the imagination of his pupil was inflamed by their recital, we cannot tell. There is no love of the marvellous in his writings. But in the formation of his character, and the direction of his studies, by far the most influential element was veneration for his learned and saintly sire. The father's devotion and industry inspired the son.

And surely this was as it ought to be. Though love to a pious father is not piety, yet with the children of the godly the fifth commandment has often proved the portico and gateway to the first; and perhaps theirs is the most scriptural devotion whose first warm feelings towards their“ Father who is in heaven,” mingle with tender memo

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ries of their father that was on earth. No character could be more impressive than Philip Henry's, no spirit more impressible than that of Philip Henry s son. grown lad he was in his father's constant company. He witnessed the holy elevation and cheerful serenity of his blameless life. He was aware how much his father prayed in secret, and besides occasional sermons, he heard his daily expositions and exhortations at the worship of the family. And from what he saw, as much as from what he heard, the conviction grew with his growth, that of all things the most amiable and august is true religion, and of all lives the most blessed is a walk with God. A hallowed sunshine irradiated Broad Oak all the week; but like rays in a focus, through the Sabbath atmosphere every peaceful feeling and heavenly influence fell in sacred and softening intensity. On these days of the Son of man, the thoughtful boy was often remarkably solemnized; and when the services of the sanctuary were over, would haste to his little chamber to weep and pray, and could scarcely be prevailed on to come down and share the family meal. On one of these occasions his father had preached on the grain of mustard-seed, and, wistful to possess this precious germ, he took the opportunity of a walk with his father to tell his fears and anxieties about himself. The conversation is not recorded, but he afterwards told his confidante, his sister, that he hoped he too had received a “grain of grace," and that in time it might come to something. With his young sisters he held a little prayer-meeting on the Saturday afternoons; and amid the sequestered sanctity of their peaceful home, and

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under the loving eye and wise instruction of their tender parents, these olive plants grew round about the table.

As we have already noticed, the learning and religious experience of Philip Henry drew to his house many of his most renowned cotemporaries; such as the quaint and lively Richard Steel; the venerable Francis Tallents; the accomplished but extremely modest John Meldrum of Newport, after whose funeral Mr. Henry said, “The relics of so much learning, piety, and humility, I have not seen this great while laid in a grave;" William Cook, “ an aged, painful, faithful minister,” at Chester, so absorbed in study and in communion with a better country that he scarce ever adverted to any of the things around him; and Edward Lawrence, whose emphatic counsels, e.g.“ Tremble to borrow twopence," no man angry or sad,” did not sink so deep into the memories of his own motherless children as into those of their happier companions at Broad Oak. On a mind so pious and revererential as was that of the younger Henry, the sight and conversations of so many distinguished ministers produced a strong impression; and, united to his natural gravity and studiousness, predisposed himself for the ministry. It was his great delight to be in their society, or in the company of warm-hearted Christians, listening to their discourse, or essaying to join in it. He inherited all his father's affection for the Bible, doting over its every sentence with curious avidity, and treasuring up its sayings in his heart. And having long practised the transcription of sermons, anon he began to make them.

At the age of eighteen his father took him to the academy of Mr. Doolittle at Hackney. The journey on horseback

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was effected in five days. On arriving at London he writes, “I never saw so many coaches. If I should say we saw somewhat above a hundred after we came into the town I should speak within compass.” The following extract from his first letter to his sisters gives a glimpse of the state of non-conforming churches in London in the year 1680, and presents the young student in an interesting point of view.

“On Saturday my father went to Islington, and I went to cousin Hotchkiss and Mr. Church's. Mr. Church came with us to see first Bedlam and then the monument. The monument is almost like a spire steeple, set up in the place where the great fire began. It is 345 steps high, and thence we had a sight of the whole city. Yesterday we went to Mr. Doolittle's meeting-place ; his church I may call it, for I believe there is many a church that will not hold so many people. There are several galleries ; it is all pewed ; and a brave pulpit, a great height above the people. They began between nine and ten in the morning, and after the singing of a psalm, Mr. Doolittle first prayed and then preached, and that was all. His text was Jer. xvii. 9. In the afternoon my father preached on Lam. iii. 22, at the same place. Indeed, Mr. Lawrence told him at first he must not come to London to be idle; and they are resolved he shall not; for he is to preach the two next Sabbaths, I believe, at Mr. Steel's and Mr. Lawrence's. On Sabbath-day night about five o'clock, cousin Robert and I went to another place and heard, I cannot say another sermon, but a piece of another, by a very young man, one Mr. Shower, and a most excellent sermon it was, on the evil of sin. The truth was we could scarce get any room, it was so crowded.

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