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BY LUCRETIA DAVIDSON; IN HER FIFTEENTH YEAR.
His faults were great, his virtues less,
His mind a burning lamp of heaven;
But were as vainly lost as given.
The numbers wild, and bold, and clear;
Tuned its sweet chords to sin and fear.
His was a mind of giant mould,
Which grasp'd at all beneath the skies;
That virtue in its recess dies.
A VIEW OF DEATH.
DY LUCRETIA DAVIDSON; IN HER SIXTEENTH YEAR.
When bending o'er the brink of life,
My trembling soul shall stand,
Great God! at thy command ;
When weeping friends surround my bed,
To close my sightless eyes,
This broken body lies ;
Stands ready to depart;
Shall rend this bursting heart;
Whose arm alone can save,
The entrance to the grave.
Lay thy supporting, gentle hand
Beneath my sinking head;
Illume my dying bed.
Roche, Printer, 25, Hoxton-square, London.
(With an Engraving.). Who were the Lollards? Where and what is Lollards' Tower? Why was it so called? These are the questions which our engraving this month will probably suggest, and to which we shall endeavour to furnish replies.
1. In the course of the fourteenth century, when the Roman Church had become exceedingly corrupt, teaching for doctrines the commandments of men, withholding the word of God from the people, and retaining little of the Church but the name, and the profession of faith in certain essential doctrines; when, although here and there individuals might exist who, in the midst of obscurity, feared God, trusted in Christ, and wrought righteousness, the great body of its members, Priests and people, were without the saving knowledge of God ;—what is called a sect arose in Germany, of which little is known but the name, and what the name indicates. The members were fond of singing the praises of God; and from the German word lollen, or lullen, signifying to sing, they were called Lollards,—the singers ; as, afterwards, from their exact method of living, Mr. Wesley and his friends (who, by the way, were in a similar manner attached to hymn singing) were called Methodists. These Lollards are said to have differed from Romanists in regard to the mass, extreme unction, and atonement for sin. Subsequently, when Wicliffe arose in England,
Vor VII. Second Series.
and by exposing the evils of the Church, giving the Bible to the people, and pointing to the spirituality of religion, became, as he has often been styled, the morning-star of the Reformation, his followers were called Lollards. Many of them, doubtless, were persons who found that mere outward forms could give them neither peace of conscience, nor power over sin; they therefore sought salvation where alone it can be found,-in Christ, by faith in his merits. They were the Methodists of their day; sectarians, and persecuted, of course. The first English statute for burning heretics was passed in the beginning of the reign of Henry IV., who, knowing his defective title to the throne, endeavoured to establish himself by paying court to his Clergy, purchasing their support by the innocent blood of his subjects. And early in his son's reign (Henry V.) a number of “Lollards” were put to death in St. Giles's fields. About the same time, (1414,) John Huss, and Jerome of Prague, were burned by order of the Council of Constance. Early in 1418, Sir John Oldcastle, Lord Cobham, a noble Lollard, was put to death by hanging and burning. And, as is usual, all manner of political evils were imputed to the Lollards. They could not agree with the Church as it then was, and therefore, according to the common logic of persecutors, they were bad subjects. That some among them opposed the errors and corruptions of Rome only intellectually, and without any particular feeling on the subject of personal godliness, is very likely; and that among such persons there might be those who thought, felt, and spoke very strongly against the overbearing tyrannies into which the rulers of the day sometimes fell, is equally probable; and then, by the common device of persecutors, the faults of some, even though they be exceptions, are charged upon all. Many of the Lollards were persons whose spirits longed for the good which only comes to man through the Gospel of Christ: they felt the guilt and dominion of sin; they felt that external forms brought them no relief; and when some among them found “the way of peace," and enjoyed “the light of life,” they were astonished at the blindness of their neighbours, and endeavoured to remove it. And hence the opposition against them. If it were true that