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THE PLURAL NUMBER.
gular practices. If some such agree- cision independent of his colleagues; ment is not apparent, it is in vain the physician adverts not to his own for obscure individuals like myself personal practice, but to the habits of to attempt to change the public his profession, "We prescribe calofeeling, or to comply with the di- mel and opium in such and such rections of our respected diocesan: cases ;" and the divine uses not his fashion and folly will be too strong own name or authority, and means for all such partial efforts.
not to intimate that it is his own I will only add, that I intend no exclusive personal habit, when he direspect to any party alluded to in says, “ We beseech
be these remarks, the practice being conciled to God." In all such cases too common to attach peculiar the parties speak generally, and blame in particular cases. But the therefore properly employ the plural , general question is important; and form.
. the more so because it bears upon But if they were delivering what many others connected with the
was only private and personal, the practical discipline of the Church. use of “we” and “ would
be bombastic. What a laugh would assail a cabinet minister who should
say, “ While on our legs we shall ON THE AFFECTATION OF USING reply to the honourable member
who animadverted on our speech." To the Editor of the Christian Observer. Equally pompous and unmeaning
were it for a private correspondent Will your younger clerical readers like myself, addressing the conducpermit me to warn them against the tors of a periodical publication, to affectation of speaking in the plural assume the chair, and talk of “we;" number in their pulpit addresses ? and even more ludicrous is the mock This is sometimes done from a no- solemnity with which I have heard an tion of avoiding egotism ; but it is ill-instructed apothecary ejaculate, superlatively egotistic, besides being “ Well, sir, we have seen our papompous and unnatural. There re. tient; and we have convalesced a quires but a moment's reflection to good deal since yesterday; and we ascertain when the use of the plural purpose going on with the medicines is the more proper and modest, and as before.” Equally opposed to when it is conceited and displeasing. simplicity is the pluralism of the When writing or speaking in the pulpit, where the speaker is alluding name of others as well as our own, to what is strictly personal, as his the plural should of course be pre- own discourse, bis division of his ferred : thus a cabinet minister may subject, his plans, his wishes, his properly say “ we propose;" or a intentions : as, for example, “We reviewer, “ we think ;" or a phy- have always thought, in our minissician, “ we always prescribe;" or a trations among you, &c.; It is our clergyman, “ we beseech ;" when fixed opinion, &c.; We propose, in the speaker or writer gives not concluding our present discourse, merely his own sentiment, but the &c." Such a style is unnatural, opinion of his colleagues, or those and not a little displeasing. In all with whom he is known to act, or such cases, “ I,” and “my," and of the persons of his profession. me," are in reality far more mo. Pomposity and affectation would dest than their correspondent pluin these cases consist in using the rals: or if the speaker, upon trying singular number : for the cabinet them, finds them, as perhaps he minister has but one voice in the will, too egotistic, it may be worth council, and speaks in the name of his inquiry whether the egotism was the government; the reviewer is not not in the ideas, rather than in the supposed to give us his private de. words ; and if he could not avoid
the difficulty by not introducing is truly alarming; and even in our himself at all, or at least more than country towns and villages the enis necessary; and what is necessary croachment is most ominous. I hear will not appear obtrusive. A ca. of shops open at eleven o'clock at binet minister gives no offence in night; of drawing-roomwindows flashspeaking in the first person singular ingon the darkness for hours later; and where it is proper, as in alluding to even of regular, respectable tradessomething in his own particular de- men, and others farremoved from the partment. “ I should not object," dissipations of fashionable life, who says a chancellor of the exchequer, seldom retire to rest till after mid“ to giving up such or such a duty;" night. Will none of your corresand a clergyman, in like manner, pondents, better versed than myself gives no offence in using similar in the detail of these matters, utter language relative to his own dis- a warning voice against so serious course, so far as it is necessary to
an evil ? For an evil it is in every mention what is strictly personal ; view, as respects health, morals, rebut the limits of this necessity are ligion, and public and private welvery narrow, and in most instances fare. Who, till the present age, he will do well to avoid the difficulty heard of public lectures and scienby avoiding self, and including tific meetings commencing at eight others in the range of his sympa- or nine o'clock in the evening; and thies. There ought to be as little still more of a Lord Chancellor's as possible of “I” and “you " in levee opening at ten, and this, morea sermon-I, the teacher ; you, the over, on the eve of Sunday? One of learners: I, the oracle; you, the suit- the first labours of a Reformed Par
Rather let it be “ we:" not liament will, I trust, be a better re“ we," meaning “1;" but we, fel- gulation of its present preposterous low.sinners ; we, fellow-Christians; hours of public business. What, but we, fellow-worshippers; we, the pas- absurd custom, reconciles the minds tor and the flock. It is not what "1," of our public men to entering on I the individual, think, or urge, or the discussion of the great affairs wish ; but the Master 1 serve, the of state at a feverish after-dinner message I bear, the office I sustain. hour in the evening, when honest There is something ungrateful to all villagers are retiring to rest ; and men, and particularly to persons often not concluding a debate till of cultivated minds, in being ac- the lark and the labourer are abroad costed, even in a good cause, in a in the field in the morning? On a spirit of dogmatism; but love and recent visit to London I was several meekness, and the absence of self and times astonished, upon the breaking personal display, carry with them a up of a party at eleven o'clock in charm, the force of which all can the evening, to hear gentlemen feel, and the proudest will not dis- say, “I must just drive down to dain to acknowledge.
the House and see what is going on.” There wants a “ radical" amend. ment of the whole system throughout the country; a “sweeping measure," a “revolutionary reform :"
not lopping off fractional minutes To the Editor ofthe Christian Observer. from our excesses, but putting the I DO
not recollect observing, clock several hours forward, and reamong the many subjects treated verting to the sober, healthful, inof in your publication, any distinct dustrious, cheerful, and anti-nerenumeration of the manifold evils vous hours of our forefathers. Is arising from the modern prevalence there no patriot, no friend of morals of late hours. I learn that in your or religion, no statesman, no divine busy and gay metropolis the practice or physician, who will devote himCHRIST. OBSERV. No. 35%.
ON THE EVIL OF LATE HOURS.
self to the accomplishment of this The glebe and tithes justly remain important object ?
where they were; but the emolument resulting from directly personal services should, in fairness, go to him who performs them ; the only claim for a larger income from an increase of population being that the labour is proportionably in
creased; but if that labour cannot Tothe Editorofthe Christian Observer.
now be properly discharged by the I Regret to find, that, among the incumbent, and a new church and many incumbrances with which the clergymen have become necessary, new church-building bill is clogged, the claim, in honesty, ceases. A it is proposed that fees shall for claim to fees for services which it is ever be paid to the parish church for acknowledged cannot be performed, baptisms, marriages, and church- stands on no basis of equity : nor is ings, solemnized at the new chapels. it equitable to say, “We are willing Such a stipulation will be a most to perform those particular acts serious evil to posterity, and add which bring a fee, though we cangreatly to the existing difficulties in
not discharge the pastoral duties of the way of a proper adjustment of adequate visiting, instruction, and the pastoral charge to the wants of spiritual supervision.” The true the population. It is a regulation view of the case is widely different, wholly uncalled-for by any claim of and the equity wholly on the other law or equity. Neither the patron side. The inhabitants of a parish, of a living, nor any future incum- it appears to me, have a moral right bent (for it would be only fair to to say to the patron, “ The emolumake a compensation to incumbents ments of the living are for the puractually in possession), has, I con- pose of supplying all the spiritual ceive, any legal or moral right to wants of the parish : are you willing the fees for duties which he does to provide for them ? The patron not and cannot perform. A parish, replies, “It is impossible, in an we will suppose, was endowed with overgrown parish like this: there tithes and glebe when it contained would need one a thousand inhabitants, for whom churches, and two or three additional one church and one clergyman were clergymen; and who is to pay the exfound amply sufficient. In process penses ?" “ But have not the emoof time, by the introduction of trade iuments,” say the parishioners, “inand manufactures, the population, creased with the increase of popuwe will suppose, has increased to lation ?" “ They have considerably ten thousand. The incumbent, and increased,” rejoins the patron; "land also the patron (so far as the value having become more valuable; but of the patronage is concerned), have they have not increased in proporthe advantage of the consequent tion to the increase of population. large rise in the value of the glebe I am willing to see that the pastoral and tithes, and also such additional duties are performed for as many fees and dues as accrue from the persons as were included in the padischarge of the church duties; but rish when the arrangement was first as a new church has now become made ; but there is no moral claim necessary, it is not justice, either that for a larger number, except so far the population should be deprived as the increase of numbers has inof one, or that the minister who creased the revenues.” “Well, then, discharges its duties should give up reply the parishioners, “as you do a portion of his scanty emoluments not consider yourself bound to proin aid of his reverend brother's al. vide for the new comers, you have ready much augmented resources. no claim on them for fees : we will
therefore exonerate you from finding as they are, are equal to mine. pastoral superintendance for more Saturday, it is true, is overworked, than you undertake for, and the like a slave; but he is not ridiculed surplus number will build a church and taunted like your present corfor themselves, and pay their own respondent. No sooner do I make minister; not, however, subtracting my appearance, than the very their tithes from the old church, but boys in the streets run after me of course not paying fees to it for with mockery and contenipt. I services performed elsewhere." I am sent on idle errands; water is have supposed the conversation to squirted in my face; falsehoods pass with the patron : for though it are told in my name; letters vul. virtually applies to the incumbent garly called hoaxing, are signed also, yet it would be a hardship to with my signature; and every puerile alter the circumstances under which and malicious trick is put in prache took the preferment, so as mate. tice to render me obnoxious. rially to diminish his income; and I should not, however, complain, it would therefore be equitable to at least in your pages, of merely a make some mutual arrangement for little ridicule, which, however puerile his life, but not to extend it to his or vexatious, I could bear, as no successor The patron is thus the
person, beyond the intellect of a only person who could urge any clown or the growth of a schoolcomplaint, and I feel assured that boy, would be guilty of such extrahis complaint is not founded in rea- vagance. But I am quite serious son or justice. He can transfer all
in saying, that these foolish vanities that he or his forefathers bought; interfere with my lawful calling, and but no man could have any title to sometimes deprive me of a whole sell fees to be exacted for services day's work and wages. This year, which could not be performed, or my birth-day falling on a solemn for a population which the emolu- occasion, I was not so much moments of the living were not in- lested as usual; but at other times tended to provide for.
I have been tossed about like a I most earnestly implore those vagrant on the earth, no one choos. bishops, clergymen, and laymen, ing to have intercourse with me. I who feel interested in the subject, to have known a committee put off, to take this particular point into serious avoid my company; I have seen a consideration. Let them weigh the whole body of workmen, who were evils to posterity of the proposed ar- to begin building a house, sit idle rangement; and then inquire ma- till I had passed by, that they turely, whether there is any over- might not be laughed at as my whelming claim of justice or equity, companions ; Lady -—'s grand any thing beyond a wish to con. party was spoiled by my name being ciliate patrons in what is not their on her card, many of the company right, that can be urged in favour thinking the invitation only a jest; of it? A FRIEND TO EQUITY.
a fleet equipped for sea, and in great haste, waited twelve hours, and lost a fair wind-the admiral re
marking, that, if he did not remain GRIEVOUS COMPLAINT OF THE
till I had departed, it would be said he had gone out on a fool's errand;
and a great statesman, in proposing To the Editor of the Christian Observer. an unpopular measure, there being no You have on former occasions ad- day open but my birth-day, waited mitted the complaint of several in- a week for his motion, to avoid the jured and oppressed characters; ridicule of connecting himself with among others, of my friend Saturday; me. but none of their grievances, great
Now all this, though it may ap
FIRST OF APRIL.
pear a matter of little moment in their own children, to the Irish ; and each particular instance, is im- the port of Bristol, which lately sent portant in the aggregate. I seriously out so many ships to lade human assert, sir, that business, private and flesh in Africa, was then equally public, is often impeded by this idle distinguished as a market for the and pagan prejudice against a poor same commodity, though of a persecuted creature, who never different colour. But when Irevexed or injured any person, living land, in the year 1172, was afflicted or dead. Some, who do not openly with public calamities, the clergy partake of the laugh against me, and people of that generous nation encourage it by a cowardly con- began to reproach themselves with nivance : even so strong-minded the unchristian practice of purchasa man as Mr.
would not, ing, and holding in slavery, their or perhaps his bride would not, be fellow-men, although natives of an married on my birth-day-at least island from which they had begun they thought it as well to choose to suffer great injuries. They did the next day;--and when I men- pot regard the crimes of a less entioned this to a Reverend friend, he lightened people as any sanction told me that he scarcely ever so- for their own; and therefore their lemnized a marriage on that occa. English slaves, though fairly paid sion; and on looking at our parish for, were, by an unanimous resoluregister, though as many persons tion of an assembly held at Armagh, are born on one day as another, chiefly composed of the clergy, set much fewer are baptized on this at liberty. This generous reforma. day than either on the day before tion, be it observed, did not stop or after. What, then, I would re- with abolishing the trade. Penispectfully urge, upon all who listen tence dictated not merely future to my humble complaint, is, to abstinence from wrong, but present discard this unworthy prejudice, restitution to the injured. and not to be deterred in proposing About six hundred years after a party, a committee, a marriage, this righteous and honourable resoluor any other appointment, by a tion, the representatives of the same smile, that may follow as soon as country convened, not at Armagh but my unfortunate name is mentioned. at Westminster, gave a noble testiIn doing which they will vindicate mony of the abhorrence of Ireland the rights and alleviate the suf- to the opprobrious traffic. On Mr. ferings of your sorrowful corre- Wilberforce's first motion, after the spondent,
Union, for the abolition of the Slave
formed thirty-five votes in a ma. IRELAND UNPOLLUTED WITH THE jority of one hundred and twenty
four. No vessel engaged in the To the Editor of the Christian Observer.
African Slave-trade ever cleared
out from an Irish port; nor, as It may not be known to your En- far as can be known, were the harglish readers, that their ancestors bours of Ireland ever polluted by a owed their enfranchisement from sla- Guineaman. The sense of the navery to the efficacy of Christian prin- tion is decidedly hostile to the conciples in Ireland, so late as the tinuance of Negro Slavery, and the twelfth century:
Our forefathers demonstration of public feeling is used to sell their countrymen, and, becoming every day more powerful. when pressed with poverty, even
THE FIRST OF APRIL.
GUILT OF SLAVERY.