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his reason would naturally rest on the firmer ground of the Socinians: and if we may credit a doubtful story, and the popular opinion, his anxious inquiries at last subsided in philosophic indifference. So conspicuous, however, were the candour of his nature and the innocence of his heart, that this apparent levity did not affect the reputation of Chillingworth. His frequent changes proceeded from too nice an inquisition into truth. His doubts grew outof himself; he assisted them with all the strength of his reason: he was then too hard for himself; but finding as little quiet and repose in those victories, he quickly recovered by a new appeal to his own judgment: so that in all his sallies and retreats, he was in fact his own convert. Gibbon.
THE HON. ALGERNON GREVILLE*.
The whole life of this noble person was a more serious preparation for death than most men's dying thoughts.
He well knew that the nobility of his extraction would be no excuse to him from the peremptory summons of death; neither did he make it any excuse to him from an industrious and strict preparation for it. This he testified by the series of his whole life; in which there evidently appeared such an awe of God, and a real sense of true piety and religion, as clearly evinced that he had strong and habituated meditations of that great leveling day, wherein the highest shall stand upon no higher ground than the meanest. * He died young, In 1662.
He did not think religion any stain to his honour, nor minding heaven to be the employment of those only who have nothing on earth.
Indeed, irreligion and atheism are now reckoned as a piece of good breeding among the great ones of the world; it is now counted as a sign of a degenerous and low sunk spirit to acknowledge even God himself for their superior. Those are cried up as the wits of the time, who can daringly dispute it against whatsoever is sacred in Christianity; yea, against the being of God himself. It is now become an argument of a judicious and gallant mind, to call into question the most fundamental maxims of our faith; and the authority too of those holy oracles which confirm them. Reason alone is extolled as the best and most sufficient guide, both in matters of belief and of practice; and they appeal to that for their judge which commonly, by their debauches and intemperances, they either so corrupt that it will not discern the truth, or else so sot and stupify that it cannot. And, thus, as the moon shines brightest when it is at the greatest opposition to the sun, these think their reason then shines brightest, when it stands at the greatest opposition to God.
This noble person, whose reason had as fleet a wing, and could soar as high a pitch as any of theirs who pretend to nothing above it, yet saw it reason to give his faith the precedency, and always found more acquiescence in a Thus saith the Lord, than in the most critical researches, and positive conclusions of his reason. So reverend an esteem had he for those sacred dictates of Scripture, that, though his wit and parts shone
forth to admiration in whatsoever he pleased to employ them about, yet he never presumed to exercise them on that common-place of abusing divine verities: he was not ambitious to commence awit by blasphemy; nor did he pretend ingenuity by being impious. But, whereas too many use their wit in jesting at them, he showed his early wisdom in believing and obeying. Other books he made the ornament of his mind: this, the guide of his life. He knew what others said, but did what God spake.
He was not made a Christian out of old heathens; nor owed his virtues to the sage precepts of Plutarch or Epictetus: these are now become the penmen and evangelists of our young gentry: Seneca is with them preferred before St. Paul, though his chief credit be that he wrote so well that some have mistakingly thought him St. Paul's disciple. The virtue of this noble person acknowledge a more divine original; being formed in him by the same spirit that gave him rules to act it. This taught him to outstrip, in true wisdom, temperance, and fortitude, not only whatsoever those starched moralists did, but whatsoever they wrote; and, whereas they prescribed but the exercise of virtue, he sublimed it, and made it grace.
Next to his absolute subjection to God, was his obedience unto his honourable, and now disconsolate mother: wherein he was to such a degree punctual, that, as her wisdom commanded nothing but what was fit, so his duty disputed not the fitness of things beyond her command. His demeanour towards her was most submissive: and
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t j wards all so obliging that it was but the same thing to know and admire him.
His converse gave the world a singular pattern of harmless and inoffensive mirth; of a gentility, not made up of fine clothes and hypocritical courtship; a sweetness and familiarity that, at once, gained love and preserved respect, a grandeur and nobility, safe in its own worth, nor needing to maintain itself by a jealous and morose distance.
Never did vice, in youth, find a more confirmed goodness: so impregnable was he against the temptations which gain an easy access to those of his rank and quality, that they could neither insinuate into him by their allurements, nor force him by their importunities.
Nor did he think it enough to secure his mind from the infection of vice, unless also he secured his fame from the suspicion of it. Some, indeed, owe their innocence to their dulness and stupidity; and are only not vicious, because not witty enough to be takingly and handsomely wicked. His virtue was of choice; and the severest exercise of it mingled with such charms from his parts and ingenuity, that his very seriousness was more alluring than those light divertisements in others, which entice only because they please.
His apprehension was quick and piercing, his memory faithful and retentive, his fancy sprightly and active; and his judgment overruling them all, neither prejudicated by vulgar opinions nor easily cozened by varnished and plausible errors. After all this, there can be nothing wanting to make up a most complete and absolute person, but only industry to quicken his parts, and time to ripen both to perfection.
His industry was remarkable, in the assiduousness of his studies: where he spent not his hours in plays or romances, those follies of good wits; but in the disquisition of solid and masculine knowledge, in which he outstripped even those who were to depend upon learning for their livelihood, and had no other revenue than what arose out of their fruitful and well cultivated brains.
And, as for that other, I mean time, to maturate these growing hopes, Providence hath denied it; by a sudden and surprising stroke cutting off his days, and thereby rendering that virtue, those parts, that industry, useless to us in anything but the example, and I should say unprofitable to him too, but only that which he never had opportunity to employ in this world, hath, I doubt not, fitted him for a better. Bishop Hopkins.
As to the archbishop, he was certainly a virtuous, pious, humane, and moderate man; which last quality was a kind of rarity in those times. His notions of civil society were but confused and imperfect, as appears in the affair of Lord Russel. As to religion, he was amongst the class of latitudinarian divines. I admire his preserving his moderation in all times, more than his refusing the archbishopric at the time of his decay, and