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suffered many to perish at their door. What felicity then is there in this transient appearance of finery? O contracted pleasure, that is bound up in a garment; precarious good, that a moth, a worm will destroy! Poor enjoyment, that depends on the quality and the form of apparel ! Misspent time, that is employed in idolizing the decorated form at the toilet. Alas! it is there that too many, pleased with their ornaments, forget what manner of persons they are: There too do many stand, who, wanting the attraction of personal beauty, endeavour to supply the sad deficiency by the labour of art.* Go, reader, and look into another, a different mirror. Hear him who said, “Take no thought for your body, what ye shall put on. Is not the life more than meat, and the body more than raiment? Why take ye thought for raiment:
* Such as are destitute of virtue and of natural beauty, and yet hope to commend themselves by their goodly apparel, are guilty of an error similar to that which Clementireports of a painter's boy. The boy wished to paint the fair Helena of Greece; but, wanting art to set forth her beauty, daubed her entirely over with gold, making her very rich, because he could not make her beautiful.
consider the lilies of the field, how they grow ; they toil not, neither do they spin; and yet I say unto you, that even Solomon in all his glory was not arrayed like one of these. Wherefore, if God so clothe the grass of the field, which to-day is, and to-morrow is cast into the oven, shall he not much more clothe you, O ye of little faith? Therefore take no thought, saying, what shall we eat? or what shall we drink? or wherewithal shall we be clothed? (for after all these things do the Gentiles seek:) for your heavenly Father knoweth that ye have need of these things.” Here then is a command worthy of attention. And is it not of more consequence that the soul be clothed with the garments of righteousness, than the body be adorned with superfluous attire? How infinitely superior is it to have a wellinformed mind; a soul devoted to the interest of truth and religion—than to be distinguished only for adopting every new fashion, and to be absorbed in the silly admiration of dress! The body must soon be unclothed, and lie down in
the bed of death; nay, it must soon decay, and be put out of sight: but the soul, enlightened and arrayed with the ornaments of truth and grace, shall not be deprived of its beauty, nor ever lose its lustre and glory. Through the varying scenes of life; in the last hour of death; and through eternal ages it shall sing, “I will greatly rejoice in the Lord, my soul shall be joyful in my God; for he hath clothed me with the garments of salvation, he hath covered me with the robe of righteousness, as a bridegroom decketh himself with ornaments, and as a bride adorneth herself with jewels.” But you may ask, is no attention to be paid to our apparel; are we to live like hermits, and care not how we appear? is it absolutely sinful
to adopt any new fashion that may arise, and
which perhaps may be exceedingly convenient? Here you are not to go into an opposite extreme. You are not required to be singular, for the sake of singularity; much less are you to neglect your apparel, and become the sloven. Decency is always requisite; without this you cannot well be considered as a fit member of society; nor are you likely to be useful in the sphere in which you move. But the great evil of which I have been speaking, is, an inordinate attention to dress. This has been a fatal snare to multitudes, and especially to the young! That a new mode may be adopted, which may prove advantageous, none, we suppose, will consider as improper. Improvements may be made in this, as well as in every other system. But what a folly is it when it becomes a person's all; when it engrosses all the conversation; when it occupies the whole mind; when every thing must be rendered subservient to it! Surely, then, it must be an evil. Let us beware, therefore, of this fascinating influence; lettus elevate our thoughts to nobler objects; let us pray that we may be adorned with superior ornaments; that our faith may be genuine, our hearts right with God: then, when the “earthly house of this tabernacle is dissolved, we shall have a building of God. Then shall we be clothed upon with our house which is from heaven, and mortality be swallowed up of life.”
* Isa. lxi. 10.
WHAT shall we say of talents, intellect, knowledge, wit? Are these sufficient to constitute happiness : Do their possessors live in a different world to others? Does the applause which they obtain render them invulnerable against the arrows of adversity? Are they strangers to sorrow ; Have they no moments of vacancy and uneasiness? Alas! how many have endeavoured to climb the hill of knowledge, and, after all their toil to gain the point, how cold and cheerless have they found it! Leaving the multitude below, where they enjoyed social intercourse, they have ascended to dwell among the sons of science, with the hope of tasting higher joys, and breathing a purer air than others; but even here, with all these advantages, they have found vanity and vexation of spirit. For intellect, what is it? It may be said, it is the glory of man, and that which distinguishes him as belonging to an elevated order of beings. But have we not seen