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almost always fatal to the fortunes of those who give, themselves up to the dangerous delusion. Those soon become wretchedly poor who trust to chance to render them exorbitantly rich. Mr. Flower had serious reason bitterly to repent his early indiscretion. By continued speculation in the funds,' says he,' at the close of the year 1783, I had lost the whole of my property. In the course of the following year, however, his friends, in order to rescue him from the adverse circumstances into which his ill-fortune had thrown him, proposed raising a sum of money towards continuing him in the partnership of the house of Anstie and Worslead into which he had eotered with considerable prospects of advantage. When application on this subject was made to Mr. Clayton, the divine brother-in-law replied, 'I will have nothing to do with it, I would not contribute a shilling were it to save him from a jail.' This is brotherly love, as exhibited in the new household of faith.
The cold and austere selfishness of the saint did not however so far overcome the feelings of Mr. Flower as® to make him forget the ties of kindred, and the claims of family affection. He thought that the heart of the evangelical preacher might possibly not be so far petrified as to be past all softening. He wrote therefore to Mr.Clayton and to his sister,reminding them of their former 'friendship ; of the obligations which they once acknowledged that they owed to himn ; of the improvement which he had made of his sister's fortune by speculations similar to those by which he had lost his own ; and after remonstrating on the attacks which had been most unjustly made upon his character, concluded with a wish that family differences inight be forgotten, and that, at least the intimacy of ordinary friendship might be restored.
"To this letter I received an answer written in the highest style of priestly insult, and bypocrisy. The following extract will be a sufficient specimen. 'A due regard to the sanctity of my office prevents me from holding any intercourse with you, and I therefore pereinptorily forbid you entering my doors as .. at the same time I shall not cease to pray for you, both in the closet and IN MY FAMILY, that God would deliver you from all blindness, and hardness of heart, and contempt of his word and commandments.' To this letter I briefly replied in substance as follows:---That I admitted the plea of sanctity of office,' as it was indeed the best he could make ; that it had been the common apology of priests, in all ages for conduct abhorrent to every other species of sanctity ;' that I was duly sen. sible of the value of bis prayers, particularly of those which he offer
fridged that they
weter's fortune by spa and
ed up for me before his family, servants, friends, &c. that the best way of rendering them effectual would be to offer up at the same time, the same prayers for himself. I assured him, that however I might feel or lament his injurious treatment, he might make himself perfectly easy with respect to any intrusion on my part, for that my shadow should never darkens his doors, until his probibition should be removed in as explicit terms as it had been enjoined; but that whenever he discovered a disposition to be reconciled, he would find a corresponding disposition on my part. Thus closed my friendship and connection with my brother and sister Clayton.'. · The statement next, proceeds to detail the unprovoked and infamous calumny which was the subject of the trial. For the particulars we must refer the reader to the work itself. Slander more abominable, mixed up with malice, more virulent, was perhaps hardly ever exhibited to the public. The letter of John Clayton, Junior, written in consequence of an application made to him by a friend of Mr. Flower, to retract the unfounded and scandalous report which he had so busily and so deliberately circulated, is a testimonial of the puritanic cant of the writer, which can hardly be exceeded even by the sect to which he be. longs.
· IIackney, Satựrday Afternoon, March 5. MY DEAR UNCLE, "As I understand that you wish to have an interview with me respecting a conversation, which Mr. Flight called at my house to engage in concerning you, I just drop this line to say, that it will afford me pleasure to see you, in Well-street, when you come to town.
. Accustomed as I have generally been, to cast the mantle of love over the characters of my fellow creatures, instead of pointing against them the arrows of invective and reproach, I shall be truly sorry, if my compliance with an inquiry of apparent friendship were to prove the unjust occasion of giving your feelings the slightest wound. But, whenever I am required to speak the truth, to you, or. any other person, I hope always to be ready to do so, with decision, aud in the spirit of meekness.
With best l'espects to Mrs. Flower,
JOHN CLAYTON, Junior. Nothing can be more, disgusting than thus to behold the sentimental cant of philanthropy made şubservient to the worst purposes of hypocrisy and falsehood. That a man should express himself truly sorry to inflict the slightest wound, whilst he is secretly inflicting wounds the most deep and the most incurable, and that he should pro
fess' the spirit of meekness," while he is labouring by the most atrocious slanders to rob'one of his nearest relatives of his reputation; all this is very nauseating. It exhibits a very odious spectacle, and such as, we will venture to say, exists no where but in the sanctuary of methodism. .'
Mr. Flower has certainly laid before the public a stateinent of facts which must impress every reader with sentiments not very favourable to the religious character of Mr. Clayton. It is impossible not to feel the most lively indignation and the deepest abhorrence on finding a head full of texts, a tongue voluble with devotion, and a heart corroded with rancour and bitterness.
'It will naturally be inquired,' says Mr. Flower,? what could possibly nave been the motives, or what apology can
"Pology can : be alleged for the conduct of my persecutors ?
With respect to my reverend brother in law," he says,' who dur. ing the space of nearly one half of my life has proved himself to be my most bitter and inveterate enemy, I shall leave it to others to determine, whether, in the exercise of his malignant disposition towards me, he has not discovered something of revenge on the me mory of my mother: whether the calumny That I had reduced my mother to beggary," was not parily suggested by the recol. '' lection of her uncourteous language to him, whilst paying his addresses to my sister, shortly after I had introduced him to our family. My sister, I perfectly recollect, one day bitterly complained to me of an insult which her lover had received from my mother, when in her contemptuous indignation, for what she thought his presumption, she told him, “You are nothing but a beggar!! On my remonstrat: ing with her, she gave me the following severe reproof;- ! tell • you, Ben, you have made a pretty piece of work of it, in introducing this beggar to the family. If my mother had spoken prophetically, and meant that I had made, a pretty piece of work of it' for my own happiness,' she could not have uttered a greater truth. I, however, argued with her on the impropriety of holding such language to Mr. Clayton in future. Although I was sensible he had nothing but his then slender, precarious, preaching salary to depend upon, I by no means considered poverty in itself, as disrepu. table. I therefore do not mean it as any reflection on Mr. C.'s birth, parentage, and education, when I stale, that he was born of poor but honest parents, who together with himself, and the other bran. ches of the family, were, compared with my mother in every stage of her life, in a state of beggary, Persons who are heirs to vast estates may, perhaps, be indulged in that licence of speech, which represents those who have an independent income of only 3001, a year, as in a comparative state of beggary; but for persons whig
never had any property they could call their own, on a sudden elevation, to
Forget the dunghills where they grew,
“And think themselves the Lord knows who, affords sad proof of their possessing ,minds too weak to bear a state of afàuence.
It is the calamity of this country at present to have too many of this unhappy race. It is a race that has increased, is increasing, and ought to be diminished : and every thinking man, we believe, will be inclined to say of it, as TILLOTSON said of the Athanasian creed, 'I wish we were well rid of it.' We heartily wish this statement of Mr. Flower's an extensive circulation. It is of great importance in itself, and bigbly interesting to the religious community. It illustrates in the most palpable manner, and by the most striking example the genius of methodism; it shews that this foul corruption of Christianity, either withers or via tiates all the best affections of the heart, that it nips the growth of every virtue, and promotes that of every vice ; that for all that is dignified, respectable, kind, and ami. able in the mind and heart of man, it encourages the most despicable meanness, the most unblushing falsehood, the most systematic hypocrisy, the most rapacious selfishness, and the most unrelenting hate. This is the constant operation of methodism, these are its tendencies ; this is its genius; and never was this truth more clearly elucidated and more forcibly established than in the present performance. The conduct of the reverend methodists, whose portraits start from the canvass in the statement of Mr. Flower, is only a specimen of the virtue that is to be found in the righteous fraternity. Ex uno disce omnes! :- We think that Mr. Flower's counsel were very remiss in pot laying the whole of his case before the jury, and in with holding many facts relative to the godly set of the Claytons, which would have proved that Mr. Flower had been the constant object of their good-will for more than twenty-years. Had the atrocious conspiracy of cruelty and falsehood been more fully developed, the plaintiff would doubtless have received larger damages, the iniquity, of his enemies would have appeared in its true light, and the circumstances of the trial would not have been represented 80 imperfectly and so unfavourably in the newspapers., .
meannesso.crisy, the. This is
Art. VIII.-Ned Bently ; a Novel, 3 Vols. By J. Amphlet.
Longman. . 1808. NED Bently is one of those extraordinary personages who rise into notice, into wealth, and into a gentleman of no common accomplishments, in spite of the frowns of fortune, and the malice of the world. In fact, this novel is a very close imitation of Cumberland's Henry, without its wit and sprightliness, and of Moore's Edward, without the good sense and clegance of that composition.'..
Ned Bently is at first discovered by a family', who are travelling in a deep snow. He runs after the carriage, Begs an alms, which he receives, and departs with thanks, This family, wbich consists of a Mr. and Mrs. Mordant, and their two little girls, are on their way to Stoney Stratford, and from thence proceeding to their mansion, called Chankely House. The next morning, however, Mr. M. not rising very early, Mrs. M. and her little daughters take a walk before breakfast,' and on proceeding down a lane, where four roads meet, they perceived the little ragged boy whoin they bad seen begging alms the evening before, seated on a little mound, which he had carefully cleared from the snow, and eating a cake. Mrs. M. on questioning him, finds that he is an orphan, who has run away from the work-house, because the master knocked him about so ;' that he was without a home, and depended for support on what he could do for a poor man, whom he called Tbomas. He said that Thomas brought him scraps to eat, and that he slept with the hackney, in the stable. The artless man. ner in which this account of himself was given, greatly interested the good Mrs. M.; but she feels more sensibly touched by his forlorn situation, when, in asking him after his mother, he tells her that she cut her throut, and that she was buried under the green mound on which he sat. Mrs. M. and her children, with the little ragged boy, proceed to the barn, and find Thomas, who gives the same account, in a lamentable manner, and pities the poor unfortunate mother's fale. Mrs. Mordant Therefore determines to take Ned with her, procures him clothes, &c.; and, as her husband.is represented as being not a little surly, she is perplexed how to introduce the subject; but that' gentleman grumbling most opportunely, on the inattention of servants, and saying that boys were more tractable than men, Mrs. M.' upon this bint,' ventured upon her story. The boy is called in, and his simple and sensible answers, with his fine,