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The Eulogies of Howard by William Hayley

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----to tell of deeds
Above heroic. MILTON.



It was my chance to be conversing with a Friend of the benevolent and
indefatigable HOWARD, when our country was first afflicted with the
public intelligence of his death. After our first expression of surprize
and sorrow, we naturally fell into serious and affectionate reflections
on the gentle character and sublime pursuits of the deceased. On these
articles we had no difference of opinion; but in the course of our
conversation a point arose, on which our sentiments were directly
opposite, though we were equally sincere and ardent in our regret and
veneration for the departed Worthy, to whom it related. I happened to
speak of the public honours that, I hoped, a grateful, a generous, a
magnificent Nation would render to his memory. My companion immediately
exclaimed, "that every ostentatious memorial, to commemorate the virtues
of his friend, would be inconsistent with the meekness and simplicity of
the man; that all, who had the happiness of knowing HOWARD, must
recollect with what genuine modesty he had ever retired from the
enthusiastic admiration of those, who had hoped to gratify his ambition
by undeserved applause; that he had really sought no reward but in the
approbation of his conscience and his GOD; that the British Nation,
however eminent for genius and munificence, could not devise any
posthumous honours, or raise any monument, truly worthy of HOWARD,
except in adopting and accomplishing those benevolent projects which his
philanthropy and experience had recommended to public attention for the
benefit of mankind."

I readily admitted the singular and unquestionable modesty of the
deceased.--I allowed that the noblest tribute of respect, which the
world could render to so pure a spirit, would be to realize his ideas;
but I contended, that other honours are still due to his name; that it
is the duty and the interest of mankind to commemorate his character
with the fondest veneration. I reminded my companion, that although we
were sincerely convinced that no human mind, engaged in great designs,
could be more truly modest than that of HOWARD; yet we had particular
reason to recollect, that he was not insensible to praise. He had once
imparted to us his feelings on that subject with a frank and tender
simplicity, highly graceful in an upright and magnanimous being,
conscious of no sentiment that he could wish to conceal. Indeed, a
sincere and ardent passion for virtue could hardly subsist with a
disdain of true glory, which is nothing more than the proper testimony
of intelligent and honed admiration to the existence of merit: nor is it
reasonable to suppose that the fondest expressions of remembrance from a
world, which he has served and enlightened, can be displeasing to the
spirit of "a just man made perfect;" since we are taught by Religion,
that the gratitude of mankind is acceptable even to GOD. I endeavoured
to convince my companion, that, as the Publick had seen in HOWARD a
person who reflected more genuine honour on our country than any of her
Philosophers, her Poets, her Orators, her Heroes, or Divines, it is
incumbent on the Nation to consult her own glory by commemorating, in
the fullest manner, his beneficent exertions, and by establishing the
dignity of his unrivaled virtue.

My arguments, and my zeal, made some impression on the mind of my
antagonist; and sunk so deeply into my own, that on my retiring to rest
they gave rise to the following vision.

I was suddenly transported to the confines of a region, which astonished
me by its loveliness and extent; it was called, The Paradise of true
Glory. As I approached the entrance, my eyes were delightfully
fascinated by two beings of human form, who presided over the portal.
Their names were Genius and Sensibility:--it was their office to gratify
with a view of this Paradise every mortal that revered them sincerely;
and to reject only such intruders as presumed to treat either the one or
the other with the insolence of disdain, or the coldness of contempt: an
incident that I should have thought impossible, from the transcendent
beauty which is visible in each; but, to my surprize, they informed me
it very frequently happened.

As I readily paid them the unsuspected homage of my soul, I was
graciously permitted to pass the gate.--Immediately as I entered, I was
saluted with a seraphic smile, by two benignant and inseparable Spirits:
these were Gratitude and Admiration, the joint rulers of the
dominion--"You are welcome," said the first, in a tone of angelic
tenderness--"You are welcome to a scene utterly new to your senses, and
in harmony with your heart: you delight in the praises of the deserving:
and you are now wafted to a spot, where those who have merited highly of
mankind are praised in proportion to their desert, and where the praise
of exalted merit is fondly listened to by an extensive human audience,
here purified by our supernatural agency from all the low and little
jealousies of the earth."

I had hardly answered this pleasing information by a grateful obeisance
to my radiant informer, when I perceived, in a gorgeous prospect that
now opened before us, three structures of stupendous size and superior
magnificence. The first was situated in a grove of olives, and appeared
to me like an ancient temple of Attica, remarkable for massive strength,
and a sober dignity--the second was less solid, but richer in
decoration; and seemed to be almost surrounded by every tree and plant
on which Nature has bestowed any salutary virtue: the third was shaded
only by palms; the form of it was so wonderfully grand and aweful, that
it struck me as a sanctuary for every pure and devout spirit from all
the nations of the globe.

"These structures, that you survey with astonishment," said one of my
benevolent conductors, "are devoted to what you mortals denominate the
three liberal professions, Law, Medicine, and Theology. Whoever has a
claim to distinguished honour from any one of the three, has a just
encomium pronounced upon his services by the temporary President of that
particular fabrick, in which he is entitled to such grateful
remembrance." "Alas!" I replied, with a murmur that I could not
suppress, "the Man whose well-deserved praises I most anxiously expected
to hear in this region, belonged not to any one of these eminent classes
in human life--he had no profession but that of Humanity."

"Be patient," said the sweetest of my aetherial guides, with a rebuke
that was softened by a smile of indulgence! "Let not your zeal for the
honour of an individual, however meritorious, make you unjust, or
insensible, to the merit of others! Assume the temper of this region,
where praise is distributed by equity and affection, but where prejudice
and partiality are not allowed to intrude!--Let us advance," continued
my monitor, with an encouraging movement of her hand; "it is time that I
should lead you to the nearest assembly."

I obeyed with reverential silence; and as I passed the vestibule of the
majestic edifice, my heart panted with an aweful expectation of
beholding the shades of Solon, Lycurgus, and other departed Legislators,
from the various nations of the world. I was chearfully surprized by a
very different spectacle.

The capacious structure was filled with a concourse of living mortals,
lively, yet respectable in their appearance, evidently belonging to
many countries; but all, as I perceived by their habits, connected with
the Law. Throughout all the multitude I heard no sound of dissention or
debate: but over all there reigned an air of intelligence and sympathy,
while all were hushed in silent expectance, and eager attention, with
their eyes directed to an elevated tribunal:--On this a personage was
sitting, whose majestic figure I immediately recollected. His
countenance is marked with that austerity and grandeur, which are the
external characteristicks of Law herself. His heart, as those who know
it ultimately declare, expresses the tender and beneficent influence of
that Power, who is the acknowledged parent of security and comfort. With
a voice that pervaded the most distant recesses of the extensive dome,
and in tones that sunk deep into the bosom of every auditor, he
pronounced the following oration:

"After passing many years of life in the painful investigation of human
offences, it is with peculiar satisfaction that I find myself
commissioned to commemorate, in this Assembly, a character of virtue
without example--a character, at once so meek and so sublime, that, if a
feeling spirit had been poisoned with misanthropy from too close a
contemplation of mortal crimes, this character alone might serve as an
antidote to the word of mental distempers, and awaken the most callous
and sarcastic mind to confess the dignity of our Nature, and the
beneficence of our God. In stating to you the merits of HOWARD, I might
expatiate with delight on the various qualities of this incomparable
man; I might trace his progress through the different periods of a life
always singular and always instructive. I could not be checked by any
fear of overstepping the modesty of Truth in the celebration of Virtue,
so solid and so extensive, that the malevolence of Envy could not
diminish its weight, the fondness of Enthusiasm could not amplify its
effects. But I must not forget that there are professional limits to my
discourse. It is incumbent on me to confine myself to a single object,
and to dwell only on those public services, that peculiarly endear the
name of Howard to the liberal and enlightened community in which I have
the honour to preside.

"It was in the capacity of a Minister to Justice, that the pure spirit,
whom it is my glory to praise, first conceived the idea of those
unrivaled labours that have rendered his memory a treasure to mankind.
In discharging a temporary office, that exposed to him the condition of
criminals, he was led to meditate on the evils which had grievously
contaminated the operations of Justice. He perceived that Law herself,
like one of her most illustrious Delegates (I mean the immortal Bacon),
was grossly injured by the secret and sordid enormities of her menial
servants: that Captivity and Coercion, those necessary supporters of her
power, instead of producing good, often gave birth to mischiefs more
flagrant, and more fatal, than those which they were employed to
correct. He found, even in the prisons of his own humane and enlightened
country, an accumulation of the most hideous abuses: he found them not
nurseries of penitence and amendment, but schools of vice and impiety;
or dens of filth, famine, and disease: not the seats of just and
salutary correction and punishment, but the strong holds of cruelty and
extortion. The irons of the prisoner, which he only beheld, entered into
his soul, and awakened unextinguishable energy in a spirit, of which
companion and fortitude were the divine characteristicks. In the noble
emotions of pity for the oppressed, and of zeal for the honour and
interest of civilized society, he conceived perhaps the sublimest design
that ever occupied and exalted the mind of man, the design to search and
to purify the polluted stream of Penal Justice, not only throughout his
own country, but through the various nations of the world. How low, how
little, are the grandest enterprizes of Heroic Ambition, when compared
with this magnanimous pursuit! How frivolous and vain are the highest
aims of Fancy and Science, when contrasted with a purpose so
beneficently great! But, marvellous as the magnitude of HOWARD'S
enterprise appears, on the slightest view that magnitude becomes doubly
striking, when we contemplate at the same time the many circumstances
that might either allure or deter him from the prosecution of his idea.
Consider him as a private gentleman, possessed of ease and independence,
accustomed to employ and amuse his mind in retired study and
philosophical speculation; arrived at that period of life, when the
springs of activity and enterprize in the human frame have begun to
lose their force! consider that his health, even in youth, had appeared
unequal to common fatigue! his stature low! his deportment humble! his
voice almost effeminate! Such was the wonderful being, who relinquished
the retirement, the tranquillity, the comforts, that he loved and
enjoyed, to embark in labours at which the most hardy might tremble; to
plunge in perils from which the most resolute might recede without a
diminution of honour. Under all these apparent disadvantages,
unsummoned, unauthorized by any Prince, unexcited by any popular
invitation, he resolved to investigate all the abuses of imprisonment;
to visit the abodes of wretchedness and infection; and to prove himself
the friend of the friendless, in every country that the limits of his
advanced life would allow him to examine. Against such an enterprize,
projected by such an individual, what forcible arguments might be urged,
not only by every selfish passion, but even by that prudence, and that
reason, which are allowed to regulate an elevated mind! How plausibly
did Friendship exclaim to Howard, 'Your projects are unquestionably
noble; but they are above the execution of any individual: you are
unarmed with authority; you have the wish to do great good, but the
power of doing little! Consider the probable issue of the
undertaking!--You will see a few hapless wretches, and tell their
condition to the inattentive world; perhaps perish yourself from
contagion, before you have time to tell it; and leave your afflicted
friends to lament your untimely fate, and the ungrateful Publick to
deride your temerity!' What force of intellect, what dignity of soul
were required to prevent a mortal from yielding to remonstrances so
engaging! The divine energy of Genius and of Virtue enabled HOWARD to
foresee, that the sanctity of his pursuit would supply him with strength
and powers far superior to all human authority:--His piercing mind
comprehended that there are enormities of such a nature, that to survey
and to reveal them is to effect their correction.--He felt that his
sincere compassion for the oppressed, and his ardent desire to promote
perfect justice, would serve him as a perpetual antidote against the
poison of fear.--He felt that in the darkness of dungeons he should want
no associates, no guards to defend him against the outrages of detected
extortion, or suspicious brutality.--He felt, that as his purpose was
heavenly, the powers of Heaven would be displayed in his support; that
iniquity and oppression would not dare to lift a hand against him,
though they knew it was the business of his life to annihilate their
sway in their most secret dominion. How admirably did the progress of
his travels evince and justify the pure and enlightened confidence of
his spirit! All dangers, all difficulties, vanish before his gentleness,
his regularity, his perseverance. Insolence and ferocity seem to turn,
at his approach, into docility and respect. Every hardship he endures,
every step he advances, in his wide and laborious career of Beneficence,
instead of impairing his strength, invigorates his frame; instead of
diminishing his influence, increases the utility of his conduct, by
making the world acquainted with the sanctity of his character. Witness,
ye various regions of the earth! with what surprize, delight, and
veneration, ye beheld an unarmed, and unassuming traveller instructing
you in the sublime science of mitigating human misery, and giving you a
matchless example of tenderness and magnanimity! O, England! thou
generous country! ever enamoured of glory, contemplate in this, the most
perfect of thy illustrious sons; contemplate those virtues, and that
honour, in which thy parental spirit may most happily exult!--What
spectacle can be more flattering to thy native, thy honest pride, than
to behold the proudest potentates of distant nations listening with
pleasure to a private Englishman; and learning, from his researches, how
to relieve the most injured of their subjects! how to abolish the
enormities of perverted Justice! To form a complete account of the good
arising to the world from the life and labours of Howard, would be a
task beyond the limits of any human mind: an exact statement of the
benefits he has conferred upon society, could be rendered only by the
attendant Spirit whom Providence commissioned to watch over him, and who
might discern, by the powers of supernatural vision, what pregnant
sources of public calamity he crushed in the seed, and what future
virtues, in various individuals, he may draw into the service of mankind
by the attraction of his example.

"Of good, more immediately visible, which his exertions produced, there
is abundant evidence in his own country. In the wide circle of his
foreign excursion, what nation, what city, does not bear some
conspicuous traces of his intrepid and indefatigable beneficence! Of the
astonishing length to which his zeal and perseverance extended, we have
the most ingenuous and satisfactory narration in those singularly
meritorious volumes which he has given to the world. In these we behold
the minute detail of labours to which there is nothing similar, or
second, in the history of public virtue; and for which there could be no
adequate reward but in the beatitude of Heaven. An eloquent Enthusiast,
whose genius was nearly allied to frenzy, has expressed a desire to
present himself before the tribunal of the Almighty Judge, with a
volume in his hand, in which he had recorded his own thoughts and
actions: if such an idea could be suitable to the littleness of man, if
it could become any mortal of faculties so limited to make such an
offering to the great Fountain of all intelligence, that mortal must
assuredly be Howard: for where could we find another individual, not
professedly inspired, who might present to his Maker a record of labours
so eminently directed by Piety and Virtue! a book, addressed to mankind,
without insulting their weakness, or flattering their passions! a book,
whose great object was to benefit the world, without seeking from it any
kind of reward! a book, in which the genuine modesty of the Writer is
equal to his unexampled beneficence! The mind of Howard was singularly
and sublimely free from the common and dangerous passion for applause:
that passion which, though taken altogether, it is certainly beneficial
to the interests of mankind, yet frequently communicates inquietude and
unsteadiness to the pursuits of Genius and Virtue. As human praise was
never the object of his ambition, so he has nobly soared above it. There
appear, in different ages upon the Earth, certain elevated spirits, who,
by the sublimity of their conceptions, and the magnanimity of their
conduct, attain a degree of glory which can never be reached by the
keenest followers of Fame--They seek not panegyricks; and panegyricks
can add nothing to their honour. The Eulogies have perished which were
devoted by the luxuriant genius of Tully, and by the laconic spirit of
Brutus, to the public virtue of Cato; yet the name of that illustrious
Roman is still powerful in the world, and excites in every cultivated
mind, an animating idea of independent integrity. The name of Howard has
superior force, and a happier effect. It is a sound, at which the
strings of humanity will vibrate with exultation in many millions of
hearts. Through the various nations that he visited, the mere echo of
his name will be sufficient to awaken that noblest sensibility, which at
once softens and elevates the soul. Every warm hearted and worthy
individual who mentions Howard will glow with an honest, a generous
satisfaction, in feeling himself the fellow-creature of such a man.
Wherever the elegant arts are established, they will contend in raising
memorials to his honour. Indeed, the globe itself may be considered as
his Mausoleum; and the inhabitants of every prison it contains, as
groups of living statues that commemorate his virtue. There is no class
of mankind by whom his memory ought not to be cherished, because all are
interested in those evils (so pernicious to society! so dangerous to
life!) which he was ever labouring to lessen or exterminate. It might be
wished, that different communities should separately devise some
different tribute of respect to him whose character and conduct is so
interesting to all: not for the sake of multiplying vain and useless
offerings to the dead, but to impress with more energy and extent his
ennobling remembrance on the heart and soul of the living. It is hardly
possible to present too frequently to the human mind the image of a man
who lived only to do good. I mean not merely such a resemblance of his
form as Art may execute with materials almost as perishable as the image
of human clay, but such an impression of his soul as may have a more
lasting influence on the life and conduct of his admirers, such as,
diffusing among them a portion of his spirit, may in some measure
perpetuate his existence.

"By this community, I am confident, such public honours will be paid to
HOWARD, as may be most suitable to the peculiar interest which it
becomes us to take in his glory. What these honours shall be is a point
to be settled by this liberal and enlightened Assembly, which assuredly
will not fail to remember that he suggested to Legal Authority her
omissions and defects with the modest and endearing tenderness of a
Friend; that he laboured in the service of Justice with that
intelligence, fortitude, and zeal, which her votaries cannot too warmly
admire, or too gratefully acknowledge."

The President arose as he thus ended his speech; and the members of the
Assembly seemed beginning to confer among themselves; but what debates
ensued, or what measure was adopted, I am unable to tell, as my
visionary Guides immediately hurried me to the adjoining Temple.

This second structure, though less extensive and less solid than the
first, was more attractive to the eye, as it abounded with scientifical
and diversified decorations. The Assembly consisted of men, who appeared
to me equally remarkable for keenness of intellect and elegance of
manners. The seat of pre eminence among them was filled by a person who
possessed in a very uncommon degree these two valuable qualities, so
happily conducive to medical utility and medical distinction. Though
left a young orphan, without patrimony, and obliged to struggle with
early disadvantages, he raised himself by meritorious exertion to the
head of a profession in which opulence is generally the just attendant
on knowledge and reputation. But neither opulence, nor his long
intercourse with sickness and death, have hardened the native tenderness
of his heart; and I had lately known him shed tears of regret on the
untimely fate of an amiable patient, whom his consummate skill and
attention were unable to save.

Thus strongly prepossessed in his favour, I was delighted to observe
that he was preparing to address the Assembly in the moment we entered.
My celestial Guides smiled on each other in perceiving my satisfaction;
and being placed by them instantaneously in a commodious situation, I
heard the following discourse; which the character I have described
delivered with an ease and refined acuteness peculiar to himself, never
raising his voice above the pitch of polite and spirited conversation:

"I am persuaded, that every individual to whom I have now the happiness
of speaking, will readily agree with me in this sentiment, that we
cannot possibly do ourselves more honour as a Fraternity than by
considering HOWARD as an Associate: assuredly, there is no class of men
who may more justly presume to cherish his name and character with a
fraternal affection. In proportion as we are accustomed to contemplate,
to pity, and to counteract, the sufferings of Nature, the more are we
enabled and inclined to estimate, to love, and to revere, a being so
compassionate and beneficent. If Physicians are, what I once heard them
called by a lively friend, the Soldiers of Humanity, engaged in a
perpetual, and too often, alas! unsuccessful conflict against the
enemies of life; HOWARD is not only entitled to high rank in our corps,
but he is the very Caesar of this hard, this perilous, and, let me add,
this most honourable warfare. Perhaps the ambition of the great Roman
Commander, insatiate and sanguinary as it was, did not contribute more
to the torment and destruction of the human race, than the charity of
the English Philanthropist has contributed to its relief and
preservation. Of this we are very certain, the splendid and
indefatigable Hero of Slaughter and Vain-glory did not traverse a more
extensive field, nor expose himself more courageously to personal
danger, than our meek and unostentatious Hero of Medical Benevolence. In
point of true magnanimity, I apprehend the spirit of Caesar would very
willingly confess, that his own celebrated attempts to reduce Gaul and
Britain were low and little achievements, when compared to the
unexampled efforts by which Howard endeavoured to exterminate or subdue
(those enemies more terrific) the Gaol Fever, and the Plague.

"But leaving it to more able and eloquent panegyrists to celebrate the
originality, the boldness, and all the various merit of his
philanthropic exertions, I shall confine myself to a few remarks, and
chiefly professional ones, on his invaluable character. It appears to me
highly worthy of observation, that Howard, before he entered on his
grand projects of Public Benevolence, was subject to those little, but
depressive variations of health which have betrayed many a
valetudinarian into habits of inaction and inutility. Happily for
himself, and for mankind, this excellent person surmounted a
constitutional bias to indolence and retirement. The consequence
sequence was, he became a singular example of activity and vigour. His
powers, and enjoyments of bodily and mental health, augmented in
proportion to the extensive utility of his pursuits.

"Beneficial as his life has been to the world, his memory may be still
more so. It may prove a perpetual blessing to mankind, if it dissipates,
as it ought to do, a weak and common prejudice, which often operates as
a palsy upon the first idea of a great and generous undertaking. The
prejudice I mean is a hasty persuasion, frequently found in the most
amiable minds, that some peculiar strength of nerve, some rare mechanism
of frame, and extraordinary assemblage of mental powers, are absolutely
requisite for the execution of any noble design. How greatly does it
redound to the true glory of Howard to have given in his successful
labours the fullest refutation of a prejudice, so inimical to the
interest and the honour of human-nature! a prejudice, by whose
influence, to use the words of our great Poet,

"--The native hue of Resolution
Is sicklied o'er with the pale cast of Fear,
And enterprizes of great pith and moment,
With this regard, their currents turn awry
And lose the name of action."

"The life and character of Howard, if they are justly considered, may
not only annihilate this pernicious prejudice, but tend to establish an
opposite and consolatory truth. His example may shew us, that some
degrees of bodily weakness and mental depression may be most happily
cured by active exertion in the service of mankind. Perhaps there never
existed a more striking proof how far a noble impulse, communicated to
the mind by a project of extensive Benevolence, may invigorate a frame
not equal in health, strength, and stature, to the common standard of
men. It is a prudential maxim of the celebrated Raleigh, that 'Whosoever
will live altogether out of himself, and study other men's humours,
shall never be unfortunate;' a maxim, which the example of Howard might
almost teach us to convert into a medical aphorism by saying, 'Whosoever
will live altogether out of himself, and consult other men's wants, and
calamities, shall never be unhealthy.' It is delightful to those, who
detest the debasing tenets of a selfish philosophy, to see the happy
influence of opposite ideas; to observe (what Physicians have frequent
opportunities of observing), that as a selfish turn of mind often
attracts and encreases the malignity of sickness, so an unselfish, a
compassionate spirit has a natural tendency to escape or subdue it. What
can be more pleasing to those, who assert and esteem the dignity of
human-nature, than to see, that the having lost all thoughts of self,
and having acted in direct opposition to selfish principles, has
promoted even the personal advantage of a generous individual? From such
a series of philanthropic labour and peril, as a selfish and timid mind
might esteem it frenzy to encounter, Howard derived not only his
unrivalled and immortal reputation, but the perfect restoration of
enfeebled health; not to mention those high gratifications of the heart
and conscience, which are superior to all the enjoyments both of health
and glory. With such temperance in diet, that his daily food would
appear to most people not sufficient to support the common functions of
life, he chearfully sustained the hardships of long travel, through
regions where travelling is most difficult and dangerous. With a figure,
voice, and deportment, that seemed to preclude him from all personal
influence and authority; and with no mental acquisitions, except those
which are common to every cultivated mind, he secured to himself not
only universal admiration, but, I may venture to say, the just and moral
idolatry of the world. So invigorating are projects of extensive
Beneficence! so powerful is the energy of Public Virtue!

"Never, indeed, was the astonishing influence of plain and simple
goodness more strikingly displayed, than in the deference and respect
which this private and meek individual received, not only from foreign
and imperious Rulers of the Earth, but from hardened and atrocious
wretches, on whom Justice herself could hardly make any mental
impression, though armed with all the splendour, and all the violence of
power. Two particular examples of the influence I am speaking of, I
shall mention here, not only as honourable to the prime object of our
regard, but as they may suggest to contemplative minds some useful
ideas, by shewing how far the mere weight of an upright and benevolent
character alone may give to the most callous nerves a trembling
sensibility, and awaken the most ferocious spirit to self-correction.

"When our indefatigable Visitor of prisons was in Russia, he beheld, in
public, the punishment of the knoot severely administered by a strong
and stern executioner.

"On the following day he waited on this man, to request from him various
information. The executioner attended him obsequiously; but this
athletic savage, though trained to acts of cruelty, and conscious he had
a legal sanction for the barbarous violence he had exerted, could not
behold without shuddering the meek and gentle Missionary of Compassion.

"The second and more memorable example of his singular influence
occurred in a prison of his own country, and relates to an outrageous
female delinquent. A corrupt and ferocious woman is, perhaps, the most
intractable fiend that human benevolence can attempt to reform; but even
this difficulty the mild and powerful character of HOWARD

"In one of our Western gaols, he found an unhappy female loaded with
heavy irons: on his appearance she entreated him to obtain for her the
removal of these galling fetters. Upon enquiry, he found that many
endeavours had been made to keep this turbulent offender in proper
subjection without the severity of chains; but, after repeated promises
of amendment on milder treatment, she had obliged the keeper to have
recourse to this extreme by relapsing into the most flagrant and
insufferable contempt of decency and order. Upon this information,
HOWARD said mildly to the unhappy criminal, 'I wish to relieve you, but
you put it out of my power; for I should lose all the little credit I
have, if I exerted it for offenders so hardened and so turbulent.' 'I
know,' replied the intractable delinquent, 'I know that I have a proud
and rebellious spirit; but if I give a promise to so good a man as you
are, I can and I will command it.' On this firm assurance of
reformation, the benevolent HOWARD became a kind of surety for her
future peaceable conduct on the removal of her irons; and he had the
inexpressible delight to find, on his next visit to the prisoners of
this gaol, that the outrageous and ungovernable culprit, for whom he had
ventured to answer, was become the most orderly among them.

"I could wish, for the moral interest of mankind, that it were possible
to obtain a minute account of the services rendered to the calamitous
spirit of many a forsaken individual by the singular charity of HOWARD.
What could be more instructive than to observe how his Beneficence
encreased by its exertion and success; while his desire of befriending
the wretched became, as it were, the vital spirit that gave strength and
duration to his own existence!

"If we contemplate with pleasure the singular re-establishment of bodily
health, which HOWARD derived from his active philanthropy; it may be
still more pleasing to recollect, that it also afforded him an
efficacious medicine for an afflicted mind. Perhaps it was to shew the
full efficacy of this virtue in all its lustre, that Heaven allotted to
this excellent personage a domestic calamity, which appears (to borrow
an expression from a great writer) 'of an unconscionable size to human

"That capricious and detestable spirit of Detraction, which on Earth
never fails to persecute superior Virtue, has not scrupled to assert
that the affliction, to which I allude, was the mere consequence of
paternal austerity. The Earth itself, though frequently accused of being
eager to receive ideas that may abase the eminent, could hardly admit a
calumny so groundless and irrational. In this purer spot it is utterly
needless to prove the innocence of an exalted being, to whom we are only
solicitous to pay that sincere tribute of praise and veneration which we
are conscious he deserves. In truth, this admirable Character seemed to
illustrate the philosophical maxim, that mildness is the proper
companion of true magnanimity. He had a gentleness of manners, that was
peculiar to himself; and, instead of possessing such imperious severity
of spirit as might produce the calamity I allude to, he was really
endued with such native tenderness of heart as must have sunk under it,
had he not found in the unexampled services that he rendered to the
world, an antidote to the poison of domestic infelicity. It is among the
most gracious ordinances of Providence, that man is sure to find the
most powerful relief for his own particular afflictions, in his
endeavours to alleviate the sufferings of others. And permit me to add,
it is this beneficent law of our nature, that gives a peculiar charm
and dignity to the Medical Profession; a profession singularly endeared
to the affectionate HOWARD! not only as its compassionate and active
spirit was the guide of his pursuits, but as one of its prime ornaments
was his favourite associate and his bosom-friend. If different classes
of men are to vie with each other, as it may certainly become them to
do, in rendering various honours to this their matchless Benefactor; I
hope we shall display, with the most affectionate spirit, the deep
interest that we ought to take in his glory. I think it very desirable
that every Physician should possess a Medal of HOWARD, not only to shew
his veneration for the great Philanthropist, but to derive personal
advantage from such a mental Amulet, if I may hazard the expression.
Most of us, in the exercise of Medicine, feel at particular moments that
our spirits are too sensibly affected by the objects we survey; that
scenes of misery and infection depress and alarm: at such a time how
might it rekindle the energy of our minds to contemplate a little effigy
of HOWARD! to recollect, that all the trouble and danger that we
encounter, in the practice of a lucrative profession, are trifling in
the extreme, when compared to the labour and the peril, which this
wonderful man most willingly took upon himself, without looking forward
to any reward but the approbation of Heaven!

"I mention not a Medal as a new idea--it has been already in
contemplation; and a motto for it suggested, which applies with such
singular force and propriety to the person whom it is designed to
commemorate, that perhaps the wide range of classical literature could
not afford another passage so strikingly apposite to a character so

"Stupuere patres tentamina tanta,
Conatusque tuos: pro te Reus ipse timebat."--

"I must confess, however, that I wish for another, which may seem to
bind him more closely to us in a medical point of view. But it is time
to leave the different members of our Fraternity at full liberty to
propose any marks of distinction that they wish to suggest.--It is
sufficient for me to have reminded you of a truth, which I am confident
we all equally feel, that, while we justly consider ourselves as
students in the extensive school of Humanity, it becomes us to look up
to HOWARD, with a laudable veneration, as the Prince and Patron of our

On the conclusion of this discourse, my Guides immediately conducted me,
with their former celerity and kindness, to the only remaining
Structure. It was the most extensive, and, from the hallowed majesty of
its appearance, the most admirable of the three. In approaching it, I
paused a moment in aweful surprise at the solemnity of the fabrick: the
most lovely and communicative of my two aetherial conductors smiled upon
me, and said, "You will find here Ministers of GOD from every Christian
country; but only those who consider Evangelical Charity as the essence
of true Religion, and who are disposed to honour, in the favourite
object of your veneration, the most signal example of that virtue, which
the present age has beheld." "I hope then," I eagerly replied, "I shall
have the delight of hearing, on this occasion, the most eloquent of our
English Bishops." On this exclamation, my kind informer regarded me with
that lively and soothing air with which intelligent Benevolence corrects
mistaken simplicity, and thus continued to instruct me with united
vivacity and tenderness.

"Earthly distinctions, you know, are of little moment in the sight of
Heaven. You will hear no Prelate; and perhaps you may feel surprised and
indignant, when you observe how very few of your Mitred Countrymen are
to be seen in this Assembly; but you will not retain in this hallowed
spot that most common of human infirmities, a tendency to censure or to
suspicion. You will recollect that this Convocation contains only those
charitable men, who are peculiarly disposed to honour your recent model
of this Christian virtue. Other good men may exist, who, from motives of
innocent mistake, or of mere inadvertency, may fail to exhibit that
animated regard to his exemplary character, which assuredly it has
merited from all men, and which the Ministers of Religion may most
properly display.

"One of these," continued my Director, "you are now going to hear; not,
indeed, a Dignitary of your Church, yet a Divine of Talents, Learning,
and Charity. He was led, by a laudable warmth of heart, to suggest to
your Country the first idea of paying a public tribute of veneration to
the signal virtue of Howard; and has acquired from this circumstance a
title to commemorate here the merit, to which he was eager to render
such early justice on earth. But it is time for us to attend him."

We immediately entered the temple; and I beheld an Ecclesiastic rising
at that moment to address a very numerous Assembly of his order, that
seemed to contain Christians of every sect, and Ministers of every
degree. The person preparing to speak was distinguished by a majestic
comeliness of person, though he appeared to have passed the middle age
of life; and with a powerful elocution he delivered the following

"The Righteous are bold as a Lion."

Proverbs, chap, xxviii, ver. i.

"In these few words, my brethren, we have a passage of Scripture, that
served as a favourite maxim, or leading truth, to the admirable
personage whose glorious qualities it is now both my duty and my delight
to recall to your remembrance. The words, indeed, are so consonant to
that exalted spirit which his life displayed, that they almost appear to
me an epitome of his character. Let us consider Courage as one of his
principal endowments! To contemplate so pure and resolute a being in
this point of view, may lead us to form just ideas on the true nature of
this primary virtue, on the sacred source from whence it should proceed,
and the sublime end to which it should aspire. How large a portion of
folly, vice, and wickedness, have arisen from mere mistakes concerning
this most important of human qualities! so important, that the real
dignity of man can only rise in proportion as this virtue is perfectly
understood, and properly cherished! In the same proportion, let me add,
our courageous Philanthropist will be found entitled to the praise of
every upright mind, to the homage of every feeling heart.

"If we take the word Courage" in the most common and simple sense of
that term, as a generous and noble contempt of personal hardship and
danger; who has given more numerous or more striking examples of such
brave contempt! Or if we follow the definition of Courage given us by a
profound, an eloquent, and philanthropic Writer, namely, that it is a
just estimate of our own powers; who is there among the most signal
Benefactors of mankind, not professedly inspired, that ever formed an
estimate of what he might achieve in the most glorious field of
enterprize, at once so difficult, and so true, so humble, and so grand.

"With every apparent disadvantage, Howard conceived it possible that his
endeavours might correct the abuses, and mitigate the sufferings of men,
in various nations of the world. Whence happened it, that a mortal, so
visibly weak and gentle, shrunk not from an idea so pregnant with
difficulty and peril! It was because, 'The Righteous are bold as a
Lion.' It was because he felt the strongest internal conviction of this
animating truth, that, while Heaven blesses a man with health sufficient
to pursue a benevolent and magnanimous design, the vigour of his mind,
and most probably his powers of doing good, will be proportioned to the
firmness of his faith, and the sincerity of his virtue.

"Many achievements of beneficent Courage have undoubtedly been
accomplished by men influenced by no motive but that generous love of
glory which is so frequently the predominant passion of an active and
ardent mind: but the virtues that arise from this source are as
unsteady, and as precarious, as the reward they pursue. He who acts
only as a candidate for the applause of mankind, will find his spirit
vary with all the variations in the ever-changing atmosphere of popular
opinion. He will be subject to hot and cold fits of action and
inactivity, of confidence and distrust, in proportion as the illusive
vapour, that he follows, may either sparkle or fade before him. Hence
proceeded much of that inconsistency and weakness, which appear in some
of the most enlightened, and exalted characters of the Pagan
world.--Wanting a purer light from Heaven, the most radiant spirits of
antiquity were bewildered; one in particular, the mildest and most
undaunted of antient Worthies, who had a sufficient portion of heroic
philanthropy to prefer the benefit of mankind to every selfish
consideration, had yet his hours of diffidence and despondency. On a
final review of his own generous labours, he is supposed to have
questioned the very existence of Virtue, though he had made it the idol
of his life; a striking proof, that the temperate and invariable energy
of soul, which alone perhaps deserves the name of true Courage, can only
proceed from a fuller knowledge and love of GOD; from the animating
assurance, that, however we may prosper or fail in the earthly success
of our endeavours to do good, the merit of the attempt is registered in
Heaven; and we secure to ourselves the everlasting approbation of our
Almighty Parent, in proportion as we approach towards that blessed model
of Perfect Benevolence, who has taught us, by his divine example, to
compassionate and to relieve the sufferings of the wretched. From this
source flowed the courageous beneficence of HOWARD: and how delightful
it is to observe that the force, the extent, the utility, and the lustre
of the stream, has gloriously corresponded to the height and purity of
the fountain!

"The Sensualist and the Sceptic may, indeed, deride the conduct of a
man, who sacrificed all the common pleasures of life, and sought for no
recompence but in the favour of Heaven. It may be said that an illusive
fervor of mind has hurried men, in all periods of the world, into
singular and wild exertions, which excite the wonder of the passing
hour, and are afterwards either deservedly forgotten, or only recalled
to notice by Reason and Philosophy, to caution the restless and
impetuous spirit of man against all similar excesses.

"But the pursuits of Howard, though they had all that sublime energy
which so often distinguished the projects of Superstition, were so far
from being influenced by any superstitious propensity, that perhaps they
cannot appear to more advantage than by being brought into comparison,
or contrast, not with the sluggish piety of sequestered Monks, but with
the bold and splendid feats of the most active and enterprising
Fanaticism. Allow me, therefore, to recall to your thoughts those
distant ages, when every ardent spirit in Christendom was inflamed with
a passionate desire to deliver the Christian pilgrims of Palestine from
the oppression of Infidels! Figure to yourselves the whole force of
Europe collecting its violence, like a troubled sea, and preparing to
pour a terrific and destructive inundation over the Holy Land! Behold
the strong and the weak, the ambitious and the humble, pursuing the same
object! Behold assembled Kings and their People, Soldiers and Priests,
the servants of Earth and Heaven rushing, with equal ardour, to rescue
the Sepulchre of Christ, and to drown all the innumerable enemies of
their Faith in an universal deluge of blood! In this scene we have the
sublimest spectacle, perhaps, that was ever exhibited by mistaken piety
and misguided valour. The love of God, by which this heroic multitude
was professedly impelled, was probably in many minds as sincere as it
was ardent. The religious spirit of their enterprize can still animate
and transport us in the song of the Poet: and in the more rational page
of History, while we justly lament the errors of their devotion, we
admire the force and perseverance of their courage.

"To the sublime fortitude of these collected warriors, let us compare
the mild magnanimity of HOWARD. Let us survey him setting forth for an
expedition as perilous as theirs; not as the Soldier of Fanaticism, but
as the Pilgrim of Humanity! Attachment to GOD, and resolution which no
hardship, no danger, no difficulty can daunt, are equally conspicuous in
the sanguinary Fanatic and the compassionate Philanthropist: but how
widely different are the prime earthly objects of their pursuits! The
fierce Crusaders invaded Asia with a desire to exterminate the Infidels.
The benevolent HOWARD was led into the same quarter of the globe, and
into perils more deadly than those of war, by a wish to exterminate, or
rather to restrain, the ravages of that terrific enemy to human life,
the Plague.

"He had conceived an idea, that, as this most alarming of mortal
maladies has been often strangely neglected by the sluggish and
superstitious inhabitants of the East, it might be possible by a calm
and courageous examination of its nature and its progress, to set limits
to its rage; and particularly to secure his own country from a future
visitation of a calamity, against which the fearless and eager spirit of
Commerce appears not to have established a sufficient precaution. For
the prospect of accomplishing public good, so devoutly to be wished, he
nobly thought it a trifling sacrifice to hazard the little remnant of
his advanced life; and, however men or nations may differ in policy or
religion, whereever there is a human spirit sufficiently pure and
enlightened to estimate public virtue, the sentiments and the conduct of
HOWARD must secure to his memory the fondest veneration. There is a
perfection and felicity in his character that appears supremely laudable
in every point of view. If, abstracted from all religious
considerations, we regard him only as a citizen who devoted himself to
the service of his country, the brightest records of Antiquity afford us
no parallel to his merit. Had he lived in those early times, the
generous enthusiasm of the antient world would have idolized his name.
Philosophy and Genius would have found, in his benevolent labours, the
most ample theme for instruction, and the purest subject for universal
panegyrick. They would have celebrated him as a benefactor to mankind,
who had built a new portico to the Temple of Glory superior to the dome
itself. They would have preferred the beneficent Philanthropist to the
dazzling Conqueror, to the fascinating Demagogue, to the attractive
Sophist; and all the various idols of public praise. But as Antiquity
exhibits no character of such unclouded lustre, we have great reason to
conclude, that such a character could owe its existence only to the pure
and sublime spirit of our Christian Faith. Let us, therefore,
contemplate HOWARD as a Christian! it is by considering him in this
light, that we shall feel ourselves most happily related to his virtues,
and most delightfully interested in the honours they receive.

"In the poor and calamitous objects of his regard, in the gentleness
and purity of his manners, in his modest and magnanimous refusal of
earthly honours, in the wide extent and courageous perseverance of his
charity, we cannot fail to discern how richly he was endowed with the
genuine spirit of that pure and sublime Religion which has the divine
prerogative of converting weakness into strength, and of giving to
Humility the influence of Power. There is not a feature in the
character, there is hardly an action in the life of this exemplary
personage, that does not mark him as a true servant of CHRIST. And may
we not presume the blessed Author of our faith, in supplying us in these
dissolute times with a recent example of such astonishing and unlimited
beneficence, is graciously pleased to afford us a new motive to prize
and to cherish that animating faith, which could form, in an age like
the present, a character so wonderfully entitled to the veneration of
the world? The spirit of Christianity is so visible in the conduct of
HOWARD, that the prime objects of his attention might be thought to have
been suggested to him by the very words in which our blessed Lord
announces to the heirs of eternal glory the source of their
beatitude--'Come, ye blessed of my Father, inherit the kingdom prepared
for you from the foundation of the world; for I was an hungry, and ye
gave me meat; I was thirsty, and ye gave me drink; I was a stranger, and
ye took me in; naked, and ye cloathed me; I was sick, and ye visited me;
I was in prison, and ye came unto me.'

"Is it possible for us, my Brethren, to recall to our memory these holy
words without feeling at the same time, in the most forcible degree, all
the Christian merits of HOWARD? Can we fail to admire and to venerate
the unexampled ardour, purity, and perseverance, with which he exercised
the peculiar virtue so distinguished by our Lord?--While we behold him
sublimely pre-eminent in this Christian perfection, shall we not cherish
the delightful idea, that his heavenly rewards will be finally adequate
to his unrivaled labours on earth? Shall not those who have loved him
exult in the persuasion, that in that great and aweful day, when the
living and the dead are to receive their everlasting doom; when the
princes and the great ones of the earth may be confronted with those
whom they have persecuted and oppressed, or whom they have failed to
relieve; when the proudest Sons of Learning, Genius, or Wit, may shrink
at the superior lustre of those whom they have ridiculed and reviled;
HOWARD will shine encircled by thousands, who will gratefully plead for
his beatitude in those blessed words of our Redeemer, 'I was in prison,
and he came unto me!'

"Yes, my Brethren, the day will assuredly come, when the servant so
signally faithful will be called to a reward, surpassing the utmost
reach of our conception, by the voice of his Righteous Master--then, and
then only, will praise be fully proportioned to his transcendant merit;
when this consummate Christian is raised to glory by the glorified
Messiah, when his pure spirit exults in the commendation of his GOD.

"The imperfect efforts, that mankind may make to do honour to such a
Being, cannot, indeed, so much promote his glory, as they may conduce to
the interest of human nature. Subject as it has been to the wildest
excesses, human panegyric, in all its shapes, may be safely devoted to a
personage, whom it is hardly possible to praise with sincerity, without
feeling our disposition improved. In a beneficent, a sublime, and truly
religious character, there is a sort of magnetic virtue, which to those
who are affectionately drawn towards it, though only in idea,
communicates a portion of itself. Hence arises, what we cannot too
fondly cherish, the delight and the utility of commemorating departed
worth. If its title to commemoration be justly proportioned to its
magnitude, its singularity, and extent; not only various individuals,
but different Nations, will become rivals in promoting the fame of
HOWARD. As the glorious qualities, which his life displayed, are equally
open to the emulation of the great and the humble; every class of human
creatures is peculiarly interested in his praise. If to honour his
memory may be thought to belong to any one community more than to
another; surely, my Brethren, we shall not fail to assume to ourselves
so pleasing a duty, so honourable a distinction. Well, indeed, might the
insulting enemies of our Faith reproach us with a supine and disgraceful
inattention to the real interest of Virtue, and the true glory of
Religion, could we suffer any other order of men to surpass the
Ministers of CHRIST in a meritorious zeal to honour this faithful
servant of Heaven, whose life exhibits a lesson more instructive and
sublime than all the eloquence of the Pulpit! a Christian, who has shewn
us, in the most signal manner, how practicable it is to follow, in
succouring the distrest, not only the precepts, but the example of our

In the moment that this benevolent Divine concluded his address to his
attentive brethren, my kind and vigilant Guides removed me from the
temple.--I was now led into a scene entirely different from those we
left. It was an open and verdant plain, with a few elevations in the
ground, that afforded advantageous views of the whole extensive spot.
Here, instead of beholding the Ministers of Peace, I found myself
encircled by the multitudinous votaries of War. It appeared to me that
all the military and all the naval servants of our country were
collected together, and each different division of these well-appointed
and well-looking men, that formed a pleasing spectacle alone, was
attended by a crowd of miscellaneous spectators, more numerous than
itself: yet in all this immense multitude there was no sign of tumult or
confusion. They were ranged in such a manner as to form a wide circular
area in the midst of them. I was stationed on a little eminence within
this area; and in the same vacant space I beheld a party of veteran
Commanders, both Military and Naval, who seemed to have been conferring
together, but separated by the direction of my aetherial Conductors, to
address, in different parts of this extensive field, the different
companies assigned to their care. What they respectively said in their
separate departments I was unable to discover, as I only heard
distinctly one gallant Veteran, whose character was particularly dear to
me. This consummate officer has raised himself by merit alone from the
humblest rank of military life to a station of the highest honour and
trust. His modesty is as singular as his fortune: passing close to me,
with a gracious salutation, he approached a very fine orderly corps of
foot, who looked up to him with a sort of filial respect, while he spoke
to them the few following words:

"As bravery and compassion are the characteristics of good Soldiers, you
cannot want, my friends, any long exhortation from me to honour the
memory of HOWARD; the most resolute and the most compassionate man that
has lived in our time. Though he was not of our profession, as his life
was devoted to mitigate the united horrors of captivity and sickness,
those worst of enemies to the spirit of a soldier, you will undoubtedly
feel that he has a peculiar claim to our most grateful and generous

This speech was followed by a burst of acclamation from those to whom it
was particularly addressed. Similar shouts of applause resounded from
different quarters of the spacious field, while our aetherial
attendants, Gratitude and Admiration, who followed each speaker at the
close of each address to different divisions of this innumerable
assembly, displayed, to each division in its turn, an extensive sketch
of a simple but magnificent mausoleum to the memory of Howard, in the
form of an English lazaretto. On the first display of this striking and
worthy monument, the applauding multitude seemed to exult in the
prospect of its completion. But I soon observed, to my inexpressible
concern, that while Gratitude and Admiration were busy in exciting the
various ranks of the vast assembly, to accomplish this favourite design,
they were followed by two earthy fiends of a dark and malignant
influence: these were Detraction and Indifference, who shed such a chill
and depressive mist around them, that all the ardour of the Assembly
seemed to sink. Among the miscellaneous crowds that were visible between
the divisions of the martial host, there ran a murmur of obloquy and
derision against the pure object of public veneration. He was reviled as
a whimsical Reformer, and a rash Enthusiast, who had absurdly
sacrificed his life in a vain and fantastic pursuit. This base spirit of
calumnious malignity was not communicated to any one division of the
martial multitude; but the universal zeal for the glory of HOWARD seemed
to be almost annihilated; even Gratitude and Admiration appeared to grow
faint in their darling purpose. During their languor, they suffered
their sketch of the Mausoleum to be gradually stolen from their hands,
and to drop upon the ground. At this moment a sudden and violent
earthquake was felt through all the extensive scene. The centre of the
vacant area opened--it threw forth a phantom terrific and enormous--its
magnitude seemed to grow upon the sight; its lineaments were shrouded
from our view by an immense mantle, on which were represented a
thousand different and hideous images of Death. Its name was
Contagion--it rushed forward with an indescribable movement. Dismay and
confusion overwhelmed all that quarter of the crowded scene, that was
particularly threatened by its first advance. The affrighted multitude
rolled back like a tumultuous sea. The horrid spectre stopt; and left a
wide interval between itself and the retiring host. A ray of heavenly
light illumined the vacant space. I fixed my eye on the brilliant spot,
and soon beheld the meek and gentle form of HOWARD advancing, without
fear or arrogance, towards the terrific Phantom. With an untrembling
hand he seized the dark folds of its extensive mantle, and seemed
animated with the hope of annihilating the Monster. In the instant, a
burst of celestial splendor was spread over the gloomy plain. The Angel
of Retribution descended; and snatching the consummate Philanthropist to
his bosom, he rose again; while all the astonished multitude, now
reviving from their terror, gazed only on the celestial apparition; and
heard the reascending Seraph thus address the beneficent spirit now
committed to his care:

"Thou faithful servant of Heaven! thy hour of recompence is come. Justly
hast thou cautioned mankind not to impute thy conduct to rashness or
enthusiasm. Weak and wavering in their own pursuits of felicity, thou
wilt not wonder to see them so in their sense of thy merit, and their
zeal for thy honour: but I am commissioned to bear thee to that
All-seeing Power, who can alone truly estimate, and perfectly reward thy
desert. I know that the praise of beings, inferior to thy GOD, never
influenced thy life; but the homage of good minds is grateful to the
purest inhabitants of Heaven; and in departing from a world so much
indebted to thy virtue, let it gratify thy perfect spirit to foresee,
that as long as the earth endures, the most enlightened of her sons will
remember and revere thee as one of her sublimest benefactors."

As soon as the divine messenger had ceased to speak, every voice in the
reanimated multitude, that heard him, raised a shout of benediction on
the name of HOWARD. I started in transport at the sound; and the effort
that I made to join the universal acclamation terminated my vision.

Pardon me, thou gentlest and most indulgent of Friends! that, conscious
as I am of the sincerity with which thy pure mind ever wished to avoid
all exuberance of praise, I yet presume to send into the world such a
tribute to thy virtues as thy humility might reject. Let the motives of
the publication atone for all its defects!

This little work is made public, not from a vain expectation, or desire,
in the Writer to obtain any degree of literary distinction; for, if his
wishes and endeavours are successful, the world will not know from what
hand it proceeds.

Thou most revered object of my regard, who art looking down, perhaps,
with compassion on the petty labours of various mortals, now trying to
commemorate thy merit, thou seest that I am influenced by no arrogant
conceit of having praised with peculiar felicity the perfections that I
so ardently admire. No! I am perfectly sensible, that the most worthy
memorial of thy virtues will be found in those pure records of thy
public services which thy own hand has given to the world with all the
amiable and affecting simplicity that distinguished thy character, and
in the more comprehensive composition of some accomplished Biographer,
who may have opportunities and ability to do justice to thy life.

The chief aim of these few and hasty pages is to recall, at this
particular time, to the liberal spirits of our countrymen that generous
ardour with which they embraced the first idea of a public monument to
HOWARD. While the expence and dignity of that monument are yet
unsettled, a Writer may consider himself as a friend to national honour,
who endeavours to animate his country to the most extensive display of
her munificence, and her gratitude towards the purest public virtue. May
she justly remember, that, to testify a fond maternal pride in such a
departed son, to manifest and perpetuate esteem for such a character,
is, in truth, to promote the interest of genuine Patriotism, of sublime
Morality, and of perfect Religion!


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