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saints and holy angels shall sing to the honour of thy mighty name and invaluable mercies, it may be reckoned among thy glories, that thou had redeemed this soul from the dangers of an eternal death, and made him partaker of the gift of God, eternal life, through Jesus Christ our Lord. Amen.
If there be time, the prayers in the foregoing offices may be added, according as they can be fitted to the present circumstances.
A Peroration concerning the Contingencies and Treatings of our departed Friends after Death, in Order to their Burial, &c.
WHEN We have received the last breath of our friend", and closed his eyes, and composed his body for the grave, then seasonable is the counsel of the son of Sirach; "Weep bitterly, and make great moan, and use lamentation, as he is worthy; and that a day or two; lest thou be evil spoken of; and then comfort thyself for thy heaviness. But take no grief to heart; for there is no turning again: thou shalt not do him good, but hurt thyselff." Solemn and appointed mournings are good expressions of our dearness to the departed soul, and of his worth, and our value of him; and it hath its praise in nature, and in manners, and in public customs: but the praise of it is not in the gospel, that is, it hath no direct and proper uses in religion. For if the dead did die in the Lord, then there is joy to him, and it is an ill expression of our affection and our charity, to weep uncom
* Τάδε δ ̓ ἀμφιπονησόμεθ ̓ οἶσι μάλιστα Κήδεός ἐστι νέκυς-----Iliad. 4. Ecclus. xxxviii. 17. 20.
́§ 'N; yewaiws àwodedáxpuxé μs ; dixit Socrates de Ergastulario lugente.
Nemo me lacrymis decoret, nec funera fletu
Faxit: cur? volito vivu' per ora virûm.—Ennius.
Πέρσας μέντοι πάντας ἐπι τὸ μνῆμα τοὐμὸν παρακαλεῖτε συνησθησομένους ἐμοὶ, ὅτι ἐν τῷ ἀσφαλεῖ ἤδη ἔσομαι, ὡς μηδὲν ἄν ἔτι κακὸν παθεῖν, μήτε ἢν μετὰ τοῦ θεῖου γένωμαι μήτε Av perdivĕri 3.—Cyrus apud Xenoph. viii. 7. 27.
fortably at a change, that hath carried my friend to the state of a huge felicity. But if the man did perish in his folly and his sins, there is indeed cause to mourn, but no hopes of being comforted; for he shall never return to light, or to hopes of restitution: therefore beware, lest thou also come into the same place of torment; and let thy grief sit down and rest upon thy own turf, and weep till a shower springs from thy eyes to heal the wounds of thy spirit; turn thy sorrow into caution, thy grief for him that is dead, to thy care for thyself who art alive, lest thou die and fall like one of the fools, whose life is worse than death, and their death is the consummation of all felicities. The church in her funerals of the dead used to sing psalms", and to give thanks for the redemption and delivery of the soul from the evils and dangers of mortality. And therefore we have no reason to be angry, when God hears our prayers, who call upon him to hasten his coming, and to fill up his numbers, and to do that, which we pretend to give him thanks for. And St. Chrysostom asks, "To what purpose is it that thou singest,
Return unto thy rest, O my soul,' &c. if thou dost not believe thy friend to be in rest? and if thou dost, why dost thou weep impertinently and unreasonably?" Nothing but our own loss can justly be deploredi: and him, that is passionate for the loss of his money or his advantages, we esteem foolish and imperfect; and therefore have no reason to love the immoderate sorrows of those, who too earnestly mourn for their dead, when, in the last resolution of the inquiry, it is their own evil and present or feared inconveniences they deplore: the best, that can be said of such a grief, is, that those mourners love themselves too well. Something is to be given to custom, something to fame, to nature, and to civilities, and to the honour of the deceased friends; for that man is esteemed to die miserable, for whom no friend or relative sheds a tear, or pays a solemn sigh. I desire to die a dry death, but am not very desirous to have
b St. Chrysost. hom. 4. Heb.
1 Πάτροκλον κλαίωμεν, ὁ γὰρ γέρας ἐστὶ θανόντων.—Ι. ψ'.
Mors optima est, perire dum lacrymant sui.—Sen. Hippol.
Μηδέ μοι ἄκλαυστος θάνατος μόλοι, ἀλλὰ φίλοισι
a dry funeral: some flowers sprinkled upon my grave would do well and comely; and a soft shower to turn those flowers into a springing memory or a fair rehearsal, that I may not go forth of my doors, as my servants carry the entrails of beasts.
But that which is to be faulted in this particular is, when the grief is immoderate and unreasonable: and Paula Romana deserved to have felt the weight of St. Jerome's severe reproof, when at the death of every of her children she almost wept herself into her grave. But it is worse yet, when people, by an ambitious and a pompous sorrow, and by ceremonies invented for the ostentation of their grief', fill heaven and earth with exclamations", and grow troublesome, because their friend is happy, or themselves want his company. It is certainly a sad thing in nature to see a friend trembling with a palsy, or scorched with fevers, or dried up like a potsherd with immoderate heats, and rolling upon his uneasy bed without sleep, which cannot be invited with music", or pleasant murmurs, or a decent stillness; nothing but the servants of cold death, Poppy and Weariness, can tempt the eyes to let their curtains down; and then they sleep only to taste of death, and make an essay of the shades below: and yet we weep not here: the period and opportunity for tears we choose, when our friend is fallen asleep, when he hath laid his neck upon the lap of his mother; and let his head down, to be raised up to heaven. This grief is ill placed and indecent. But many times it is worse: and it hath been observed, that those greater and stormy passions do so spend the whole stock of grief, that they presently admit a comfort and contrary af
1 Expectavimus lacrymas ad ostentationem doloris paratas: ut ergò ambitiosus detonuit, texit superbum pallio caput, et manibus inter se usque ad articulorum strepitum contritis, &c.-Petron. 17. 3.
m ̔Ως δὲ πατὴρ οὗ παιδὸς ὀδύρεται ὀστέα καίων
n Non Sicula dapes Dulcem elaborabunt saporem, Non avium citharæque cantus. Somnum reducent.-Od. 3. 1. 18.
• -Tremulúmque caput descendere jussit
fection, while a sorrow that is even and temperate, goes on to its period with expectation and the distances of a just time. The Ephesian woman, that the soldier told of in Petronius, was the talk of all the town, and the rarest example of a dear affection to her husband; she descended with the corpse into the vault, and there being attended with her maiden resolved to weep to death, or die with famine or a distempered sorrow: from which resolution nor his nor her friends, nor the reverence of the principal citizens, who used the entreaties of their charity and their power, could persuade her. But a soldier that watched seven dead bodies hanging upon trees just over against this monument, crept in, and awhile stared upon the silent and comely disorders of the sorrow: and having let the wonder awhile breathe out at each other's eyes, at last he fetched his supper and a bottle of wine, with purpose to eat and drink, and still to feed himself with that sad prettiness. His pity and first draught of wine, made him bold and curious to try if the maid would drink; who, having, many hours since, felt her resolution faint as her wearied body, took his kindness, and the light returned into her eyes, and danced like boys in a festival: and fearing lest the pertinaciousness of her mistress's sorrows should cause her evil to revert, or her shame to approach, assayed whether she would endure to hear an argument to persuade her to drink and live. The violent passion had laid all her spirits in wildness and dissolution, and the maid found them willing to be gathered into order at the arrest of any new object, being weary of the first, of which, like leeches, they had sucked their fill, till they fell down and burst. The weeping woman took her cordial, and was not angry with her maid, and heard the soldier talk: and he was so pleased with the change, that he who first loved the silence of the sorrow, was more in love with the music of her returning voice, especially which himself had strung and put in tune and the man began to talk amorously, and the woman's weak head and heart were soon possessed with a little wine, and grew gay, and talked, and fell in love; and that very night, in the morning of her passion, in the grave of her husband, in the pomps of mourning, and in her funeral garments, married her new and stranger guest. For so the
wild foragers of Lybia being spent with heat, and dissolved by the too fond kisses of the sun, do melt with their common fires, and die with faintness, and descend with motions slow and unable to the little brooks, that descend from heaven in the wilderness; and when they drink, they return into the vigour of a new life, and contract strange marriages; and the lioness is courted by a panther, and she listens to his love, and conceives a monster that all men call unnatural, and the daughter of an equivocal passion and of a sudden refreshment. And so also was it in the cave at Ephesus: for by this time the soldier began to think it was fit, he should return to his watch, and observe the dead bodies he had in charge: but when he ascended from his mourning bridal-chamber, he found that one of the bodies was stolen by the friends of the dead, and that he was fallen into an evil condition, because, by the laws of Ephesus, his body was to be fixed in the place of it. The poor man returns to his woman, cries out bitterly, and in her presence resolves to die to prevent his death, and in secret to prevent his shame : but now the woman's love was raging like her former sadness, and grew witty, and she comforted her soldier, and persuaded him to live, lest by losing him, who had brought her from death and a more grievous sorrow, she should return to her old solemnities of dying, and lose her honour for a dream, or the reputation of her constancy without the change and satisfaction of an enjoyed love. The man would fain have lived, if it had been possible, and she found out this way for him; that he should take the body of her first husband, whose funeral she had so strangely mourned, and put it upon the gallows in the place of the stolen thief: he did so, and escaped the present danger, to possess a love, which might change as violently, as her grief had done. But so have I seen a crowd of disordered people rush violently and in heaps, till their utmost border was restrained by a wall, or had spent the fury of the first fluctuation and watery progress, and by-and-by it returned to the contrary with the same earnestness, only because it was violent and ungoverned. A raging passion is this crowd, which when it is not under discipline and the conduct of reason, and the proportions of temperate humanity, runs passionately the