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their sleep of darkness, to a thoughtfulness about their souls, and sincerely wished the increase and promotion of solid piety; but I had opportunity to observe there, that those who were innocent and well-minded before, have continued the most steady and circumspect in their conduct; that those who had before gone into gross pollutions, being induced to believe that regeneration was an instantaneous, not a gradual work, did not sufficiently remain under repentance, to let it have its perfect work; and that instead of pressing forward after the perfection of the inward life, denying self, and a conformity to this world in its corruptions, in language and practice, their zeal too much settled in the frequency of their meetings, hearing sermons, praying, singing, reading, and treasuring up Scripture texts and passages in their memories, talking them over too lightly and customarily in conversation, which rendered these Divine truths like salt without the proper savor, taking from them the awful weight and dignity due to them.
By these means Christian fortitude, for standing steadfast in reverent simplicity and holy vigilance, soon declined; a silent dependence on Christ, the true teacher, was irksome, and that dependence which was due to him misplaced on fallible men. The consequence was a dwindling, a blast on the first buddings of heavenly desires, a decay of the divine life; and many of them soon returned, like the sow that was washed, to wallow in the mire and filth of transgression again ; and threw off the affectation, the insipid, and surfeiting talk of religion ; the form of godliness, which they had too much gloried in, for want of humbly abiding under the purifying power thereof.
MARRIAGE TO ELIZABETH BARNES. ATTENDS LONDON YEARLY MEETING, AND VISITS FRIENDS IN WALES. REMOVES TO BRISTOL, ENGLAND. REVIEW OF THE STATE OF THE SOCIETY IN IRELAND DURING HIS RESIDENCE THERE. REMARKS ON CHANGES EXPERIENCED IN HIS REMOVAL TO ANOTHER NEIGHBORHOOD.
SOMETIME after this, a vacancy falling out in the city of Dublin, by the death of John Beetham, Friends' schoolmaster there, and the return to England of George Routh, who had tried the place after him, my brother being encouraged by Friends there to take the charge of that school, seemed inclined thereto, and as the prospect was promising, I freely assented to his removal, although thereby I was left singly to undergo the labor and care of a large family of boarders, in which he and his wife had been useful assistants since the death of my wife. Thinking it best to change my situation, I accordingly married Elizabeth Barnes, daughter of Thomas Barnes, of Waterford.
About two weeks after our marriage, we went together to the summer half-year's meeting in Dublin. In our way we spent the First-day among our friends at Timahoe, it being the last meeting there to many of them. For in a few days after, several of their families came to Dublin to embark for North Carolina, to settle upon my cousin Arthur Dobb’s, lands there, who was their landlord at Timahoe, and who, upon my application, had offered to me for life, and after it to my son John and his heirs, thousand acres of that land. Robert Millhouse, of Timahoe, was to choose land next to that which himself should
take, but the captain of the ship in which they went, not being well acquainted with the coast, ran too far to the southward, landed them at Charleston, in South Carolina, and thereupon they settled in that province, so I was disappointed in my expectation of getting the land taken up by him. Two other opportunities afterwards presented some probability of getting it taken up; but by various accidents, my hopes were again disappointed; may all disappointments of this kind incite to a greater diligence in seeking the one thing needful, that good part, which shall never be taken away.
We resided about ten years after our marriage in Mountmelick ; during which time an increasing private family and the necessary attendance on my house and school, prevented my going any great journey; but I attended monthly, province, and national meetings generally, in which I was often favored, among my brethren, with the fresh arisings of life and the renewing of inward strength.
My wife being of a very weakly and tender constitution, I apprehended the fatigue and burdensome care of a boarding-school a load too heavy for her, and from hence conceived a desire, with submission to the ordering of divine Providence, of a place where the weight might rest more upon my shoulders, and less on hers; and having made previous application, I received an invitation to return to Bristol, and resume the school there.
Hereupon, after some time, I threw up my school in Mountmelick, attended the Fifth Month National Meeting at Dublin ; after which I embarked there with three Friends more, to attend the Yearly Meeting at London. We went aboard ship on Fifth-day morning, and landed at Parkgate next morning, and had an evening meeting
at Liverpool. On Seventh-day went to Warrington ; on First-day morning, to the general meeting at Frandley, in Cheshire. On Second-day we reached Birmingham; after meeting there on Third-day we went to Coventry. On Fourth-day, after a meeting at Coventry, we reached Towcester, and London the next day.
After the Yearly Meeting was over, Isaac Jackson returned home; Joshua Wilson stayed a little time amongst his relations, and Joseph Inman and I, accompanied by our kind landlord, John Eliott, of London, on Third-day came to an evening meeting at Reading, appointed to begin at the sixth hour. Next morning Joseph Inman and I were at the Monthly Meeting at Newberry, and that evening at a small meeting at Marlborough ; on Fifth-day we came to a meeting at Calne, and after it, to John Fry's, at Sutton-benjar. Next day, after meeting there, to Bath, and on Seventh-day to Bristol, where we stayed till Sixth-day morning, when leaving Bristol, we crossed the new passage into Wales; that night came to Cardiff, and the next to Swanzey, where we stayed over the First-day; and on a Second-day were at an evening meeting at Carmarthen. On Third-day at Llandewy. brevy. On Fourth-day, hy way of Llaneedless, we reached John Goodwin's. At Llaneedless we went to see a Friend's widow. We found her spinning in her poor habitation, and she seemed rejoiced to see us, and as we had no guide, she readily offered herself for a guide to John Goodwin's, which they called five miles; but it took us near three hours riding.
On Fifth-day, after meeting at this ancient, worthy Friend's house, we went to his son-in-law, Humphrey Owen’s, on the seaside, who had married John's eldest daughter; on Sixth-day, after meeting, said Humphrey
accompanied us to his brother Lewis Owen’s, near Dolgelly, in Merionethshire; and next day along a mountainous road to Carnarvan, where we staid, and had a meeting by ourselves; and after dinner, came to Holyhead, on First-day evening. On Second-day morning, about two o'clock, our kind friend saw us on the packetboat, and then took leave of us. On Third-day, in the evening, we landed in Dublin, and next evening I got safe home to my wife and children in Mountmelick.
After my return, I attended the Quarterly Meeting for Munster, at Clonmel, and that for Leinster at Enniscorthy, and then I got my large family ready for our removal, consisting of my wife and her mother, in her eightieth year, eight children, and a nurse to the youngest, about eight months old. With the assistance of sundry kind friends, particularly Thomas Strangman, of Mountmelick, we all got well to Waterford, and from thence, after staying about ten days with our friends there, to Bristol.
Now leaving Ireland, after having sojourned there about twenty-four years, and received much affection and kindness from many friends, of which I hope to retain the grateful remembrance as long as my memory shall continue, let me review the state of our Society there during that space
of time. At my first going thither, there were yet living in most parts of the nation, where meetings were settled, some of the good old stock, both ministers and elders, who loved God and mankind, and were esteemed and beloved by them, being kind and open-hearted, as well as faithful and circumspect in all the branches of our Christian testimony, closely united in tender love one with another, in supporting it, and keeping things in good order in the church. Their pious care herein was like a fence about the flock,