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the poor

tion of the plan, so long as the present mode of levying rates for

Thall continue to subsift. For is it not evident, that one parish would be induced, when application was made to it for the relief of a pauper's family, to throw the burden upon some other parish, perhaps less able to hear it, which might very easily be done, by giving the applicants money enough (and something more) to pay their expences to such parish ? Would it not also have a strong tendency to discourage the establishment of manufactories, since in many a poor parish where manufactories are established, and many hundred hands employed; if the proprietors were to fail, and the workmen to become chargeable to the parish in which they live, it might prove the ruin of every other inhabitant of the parish ? Various other objections of a similar description suggest themfelves to our minds, but there will suffice to show the nature of our apprehensions on the subject. All these objections, however, might be removed by one plain and simple alteration, and we are rather surprized, that it did not occur to the worthy author ; the abolition of the present mode of levying poorrates, and the substitution of a general pound-rate, throughout the kingdom ; in other words the conversion of the parochial tax into a national tax. There may, possibly, be serious objections to this plan; but, we confess, they do not at present occur to our minds ; it certainly would be attended with the eminent advantage of fimplifying the whole system, and of destroying many abuses which, no doubt, exist at present.

To the following propositions of the author, no solid objection can, we think, be urged.

" But if it should not be thought expedient at present to make any alteration in the law of settlements, I should then submit to consideration the propriety of making the following regulations : First, that all orders of removal should be signed by one magistrate only; this would prevent the delay and difficulty which now attends the getting two magistrates to hold a petty sessions, without which no removal can legally take place : seCONDLY, that a copy of such order, and the pauper's examination, properly certified, thould be sent to the parish to which the pauper is ordered to be removed ; and, if such parish admit the settlement, then to allow and pay such sum towards his maintenance as was usual in the parish where he then resided; but if this should be refused, then to be at the expence of removing him to his own parish : and, THIRDLY, that, if the settlement should be disputed, the reasons for appealing against the order of removal Mould be given in writing at the time of delivering notice of appeal, and a copy of such reasons left with the clerk of the peace; and, upon the hearing of the appeal, the court to order, if they see proper, the expence of keeping and removing the pauper,

" The

" The adoption of this mode would not only save the expence of removal, but would also, in a great measure, prevent frivolous and vexatious appeals."

The author remarks that, in former times, one-third of the tithes of the church were devoted to the support of the poor ; and seems to insinuate that recourse ought to be had to a similar means of supporting them at present. He observes that those titles have long since been diverted to ecclefiaftical purposes.” But surely he cannot have forgotten how very considerable a portion of these tithes were diverted from ecclefiaftical purposes” at the time of the reformation, and are now in the hands of lay-impropriators; and how very inadequate a fupport the remaining part of them now afford to the clergy of the established Church.

On fuch a subject as the Poor-rates, great difference of opinion has existed, and, in all probability will continue to exist, among

the most able and best intentioned men. But on one point, we conceive, there can be no difference, viz. that the enormous sums which have, of late years, been raised for the support of the poor are not only a national grievance but a national disgrace. Formerly the indigent man disdained to apply for parochial relief until compelled by absolute necessity; and even then the shame and distress, evident in his countenance, ftrongly marked the reluctance with which he made his application. But now the young, the healthy, and the strong, particularly in the metropolis and its vicinity, do not blush to demand, with a tone of aflurance and importunity, admiffion to the Poor-house, there to subsist in idleness, on the labours of the industrious. This is a serious evil to which an effica'cious remedy ought to be immediately applied; it betrays a base, degenerate, spirit; an absence of all manly feeling; and a total want of that mental independence which gives a stimuJus to useful labour and virtuous industry. To trace the sources of this degeneracy would be an important talk; it would, we fear, be found to originate in a widely prevailing fpirit of immorality and irreligion. We shall conclude our present observations on this interesting subject by proposing one question for the confideration of reflecting minds ;-Whether the vast increase of charitable contributions (so honourable to the nation, in more points of view than one) has not had a direct tendency to produce a multiplication of their abjects ?

Discourses, &c. on several Subjects. By the late Rev. Christo

pher Wells, Bi D. formerly Fellow of Jesus College,


Oxford, and afterwards Rector of Remenham, Berks;
2 Vols. 8vo. PP. 994. 145. in Boards. Leigh and
Sotheby, and F. and C. Rivington. London. 1800.
"HERE is a peculiar delicacy due to the character of

writers, whose inedited compositions fall into the hands of surviving friends. Incompetent, perhaps, to appreciate their merits, certainly partial to whatever dropped from the pens of those whom they admired and loved, while they travelled together on the journey of life, and of whom, when deprived of their pleasing and instructive society, they often think with fresh regret ; they may possibly lessen the reputation, which they were solicitous to exalt: viewing, with the cye of affection, what will be seen with other eyes, when examined by the critic, they may differve the cause which they wished to promote. Hence has it sometimes happened, that the literary fame of authors, of no mean note, has been conliderably diminished by injudicious editors; who, not discriminating between what was left revised and prepared for the press, and that which was never intended for the public eye, have done no honour to the memory of their departed friends. On the other hand, it ought not to be forgotten, that many useful and excellent works, calculated to advance the cause of religion, virtue, and learning, may be consigned to unmaited oblivion, through an excess of modefty and diffidence, often as inseparable from genuine worth and extraordinary talents, as is arrogance or self-conceit from ignorance or superficial learning. They, therefore, deserve welt of mankind, who will take the pains to select and prepare for posthumous publication such valuable writings. In this latter class may these two volumes of Discourses and Letters be justly ranked.

Mr. WELLS, as is stated in a short, but intercfting, account of his life, prefixed to the first volume, was a man “Of an uncommonly great understanding, cultivated, with the utmott care, by deep ttudy; having, from his earliest youth, read and conlidered che best books, in the Greek language particularly ; in which he was allowed to be a most accurate scholar; which was an advantage in what he Audied beyond all other things, the scriptures, daily and hourly almoft; and, from his cruly Chriftian temper and dispolition, added to those other qualifications, he was peculiarly ficted for the itudy of divine things." He died in the year 1765, about 65 years of age."

His manuscripts, after his decease, fell into the hands of a

"* If we mistake not, the late Rev. Prikup, Cocks, A. M, Rector of Afton, Middlesex." NQ. XXXI, VOL. VIII.



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very worthy divine, pot long since dead; to one of whose brothers Mr. Welks had proved himself a most valuable tutor and sincere friend, having received his young pupil, at

the most critical period of his life, from the hands of a worthJess and uriprincipled profligate, who had abused the confi

dence 'repored in him by a moft refpectable family: “ being "unwearied in his endeavours to pervert bis pupil's judgment,

and corrupt his mind." To one, who had fnatched a tenderly - beloved brother from impending ruin," and inculcated into bis mind the principles of true religion and virtue,” every

token of grateful respect was due ;, and to one, entertaining no "finall portion of veneration for the memory of lo truly amiable

a character as Mr. W. appears to have been having - the same view of things, the fame fimplicity of cha

racter, the fame fuavity and calmness of temper, the same
great learning and reverence for the holy Scriptures, and being
fo peculiarly qualified for the task; it would have proved a wel-
"come office to revise and correct, for the press, some of Mr.
WELLS's papers. This the excellent person, into whose
hands Mr. WELLS's writings fell, determined upon doing :
but ill health soon discouraged, and, at jaft, ditabled him,

even from making a beginning. It now devolved to a survi-
ving fifter, at an advanced period of life, to make the in-
tended selection'; and, with the affistance of a clerical friend,
'who took upon himself the whole business of selecting, ar-
ranging aud preparing the manuscripts for the press, and car-
Tying them through it, two volumes of Sermons, with some few
Letters fubjoined, are now first published,
" Having perused the Discourses with a considerable degree of
attention, we hefitate not to pronounce, that they, poffefs the
merit of being plain and practical sermons, written on Chrif-
tian principles, and designed, with few exceptions, for the
public instruction of the inhabitants of a country parish, of
which Mr. Wells, for some years before his death, was the
incumbent. They are printed, as a short and affecting
dedication of them to a female friend informs us, as they were
written by the pious author, without any alteration or correc-
tion; and they exhibit a specimen of unadorned composition,
fuited to the comprehenfion of a country congregation.
Though plain and finple, they contain nothing in the style
or sentiment, beneath the dignity of the pulpit; and to rea.
ders, who take into their hands books on religious topics, ra-
ther for folid edification, than mere: amusement, they will af.
ford much fatisfaction. To us they present the venerable
character of the pious parifh- priest, inculcating, " by line
upon line,, and precept upon precept," the fundamental doc-

trines and great duties of Christianity; more attentive to things than words; more studious to edify his hearers, than to excite an admiration of himself by an oftentatious display of talents,

From these remarks the reader will not be led to expect either the elaborate discussion of abstruse points in theology, or the limæ labor, in the construction of the sentences : but he will not be disappointed, if he look for better things; for the pious instruction of " a scribe well instructed unto the kingdom of God, who bringeth forth out of his treasure things new and old.” Having premised thus much, we need only lay before our readers the Subjects of the several discourses contained in the two volumes, and make some few extracts, which will en able them, in some measure, to form their opinion of Mr. Wells's merit, both as a writer and a divine.

The first volume contains 30 Discourses on the following topics; viz. I. The first and second Advent of Christ, 2 Theff. i. 1o. II. Chrilt the Saviour of Sinners, Matt. i, 21. III. Prophetical Representations of Christ's Salvation, Matt. i. 21. IV. Christ the Dayspring from on high,,Luke i. 78, 29. V. The Nativity of Christ, Luke ii. 10, 11. Vi. The Death of Christ, 2 Cor. v. 20, 21.

VII. The Resurrection of Chrift, 1 Cor. xv. 14. VIII. The Afeension of Christ, Acts. i. 9. IX. The Gift of Tongues, Acts. ii. 16, 17, X. The Divinity of Christ, John 1. 18. XI. The Rite of Confirmation, Mark x. 14, 15. XII. The Excellency of the Law of the Jews, (preached at St. Mary's, Oxford, before the University, Nov. 10, 1754) Pfalm xix. 9, 10, 11, XIII. The first and great Commandment, Matt. xxii. 37. 38. XIV. The Witness of God in fruitful Seasons, Acts xiii. 17. XV. The Knowledge of God, a Call to honour and obey him in our lives, Rom. i. 20, 21. XVI. The Goodness of God, Pfalm .cxlv. 9. XVII. The divine Mercy the proper Motive to Charity, Ephef.. iv. 31, 32. 1 XVIII. The Meature and Rewards of Beneficence, Luke vi. 36, 37, 38. XIX. The Creation of Man in the Image of God, Genefis

XX.. Religious Gratitude and Admiration of the Works of God, Psalm viii: 6, 7, 8, 9: XXI. Love of Friends and Country, Luke vii. 545 5, 6. XXII. Dependence on God's Providence, Matt. vi. ii: XXIII. The Marriage Feaft, Matt. xxii. 2. XXIV. The unjust Steward, Luke xvi. 10, II, 12. XXV. The Pearl of great Price, Matt. xiii. 45, 46. XXVI. The Gospel a Light and Joy to the World, Ephes. v. 14. XXVII Confession of Sins to God, Matt, wi. 6. XXVIII. Godly. Sorrow, 2-Cor, viis 10. XXIX. The Penitent restored, Psalm li. 12. XXX. God the Chris tian's Supreme Good, Psalm cxix, 57

i. 26, 27;

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