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Luther, written by himself.”. The title is verified by the plan, which is that of selecting and putting in orderly series, the great numbers of passages in Luther's books, letters, &c., which relate personally to himself, with only sometimes a few sentences by the editor to link them together. The effect of the work is, that while the great reformer stands forth, in all his energy and intrepidity, there is manifested a sensibility, a softness and tenderness of feeling, which one would not have expected in so lion-like a piece of humanity. Who would have imagined him looking with a gentle emotion, at a little bird in a tree? The good and noble fellow was sometimes, even after he was become so publicly conspicuous, so poor that he could not afford himself a new coat, and tells how he was forced to pawn a silver goblet, which he happened to possess by inheritance, as his only article of value. When far on in his life and victorious success, his spirit sometimes drooped quite into melancholy at sight of the perversities, the refractoriness, the jars, the counteractions, and self-interested competitions, which arose among even the reformers...

* Memoirs de Luther, &c., par M. Michelet, &c., since translated by W. Hazlitt, Esq., for Bogue's European Library. London, 1846.

CHAPTER IX.

LAST REVIEW-LETTER TO MR. GREAVESVISIT TO BOURTON

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CHARTISTS AND THE ANTI-CORN-LAW LEAGUE-NATIONAL EDUCATION-LAST ILLNESS AND DEATH.

1839-1843.

MR. FOSTER closed his literary labours by an article on Polack's New Zealand, which appeared in the Eclectic Review for July, 1839.

In a letter to Mr. Greaves* (April 25, 1840), to whom during his residence at Brearley he had stood in the twofold relation of friend and pupil, he reviews the circumstances of their early acquaintance and course in after-life. “What a width of time it is to look back over !-approaching to half a century. How far those youthful interests, those social scenes, those amicable colloquies, those little adventures, have receded away! How many with whom we were habitually or occasionally associated, have vanished from the world! How changed are we ourselves from what we were then! And then the reflection, not the less striking for being too selfevident almost to be put in words, that all these-can return no more !

* William Greaves, Esq., who subsequently removed to Clapham, where he died in the same week with Mr. Foster, was in early life classical tutor at Brearley, an office for which he was admirably fitted, both hy his attainments as a scholar, and by all the higher moral qualifications required in an instructor of youth. “ He was a singularly amiable man, full of benevolence and kind consideration for the wants and feelings of others. His heart was formed for friendship, and he had an acute discernment of what was proper in human conduct and the various relations of life. His taste was formed on the best models, and though not an author himself, he was ever ready to undertake all kinds of useful offices for his literary friends.”

“It would be very interesting to me to have a long quiet comparison and intercommunication with you, of our respective and mutual remembrances, seated alone by the nightly fire-side. Some of these recollections would be simply those of fact; some would be invested with grave and pensive sentiment. And they would have the interest of being exclusive to ourselves, as the solitary occupants, so to speak, of a departed and far back tract of time; belonging to a period which none around us belong to; the survivors of those who shared its interests with us, but share them no more. We should be something like two men left on a solitary shore by a wreck in which their companions had perished. We should feel to belong to the race who were then our coevals, whatever subsequent interests and relations we have been involved in. You can in mere memory go back to those times and scenes; but can you recall the order of ideas and feelings in such manner as to reanimate them, as it were, for a transitory moment, so as to have a lively sense of what they were ? For myself, I have very long lost any such

power. A great difference will have been made in your case from mine, as to the continuity and prolongation of interest in the scene of our early life and in its inhabitants, by your practice of rather frequently revisiting it. It is not, as to me, like an insulated territory, with a wide waste of sea between. Your disconnexion from the social economy there (I mean our early associates) has been gradual, by the successive decease of one and another. And perhaps in some certain degree they were replaced to you by those not of the primeval

VOL. II.

M

age.

Whereas I have been nearly forty years (!) withdrawn totally from personal communication. I cannot exactly tell how it came to be so. My parents survived a considerable number of years after the time that I saw them last. But besides the immediate circumstances of my remote local situations, I felt a strong recoil at the thought of going to see them for absolutely a last time. I knew they were surrounded by kind friends, and sent them a little pecuniary assistance. I confess also that I feared lest I should witness a painfully sensible decline of mental faculties. I beard of the decease of one and another of the plain worthy persons (the Greenwoods, for instance, whom you will remember) to whom I had been partial. For our coeval friend Fawcett, I felt invariably a most genuine esteem and regard.

and regard. But progressive years were still bringing additional circumstances to diminish the inducements to a revisit of the place of my nativity. And always the thought that such a visit would be made with the consciousness it was to be the last. I may add, a great aversion to long tedious travelling; and also, that during a very considerable

' portion of the long period, I could ill spare the expense.

Probably neither of our lives since that remote period of separation would furnish a long, varied, eventful history. It is strange to think how short a record would suffice for my seventy years, though a sojourn in a considerable variety of situations.

Great and marked changes for the better would be the gratifying thing to tell of; but one's self, one's very self, is so sadly the same in every place, and through every stage ;-the greater reproach as Providence has been faithfully kind. With some minor deductions I have been highly favoured in respect to health, in point at least of exemption from painful and oppressive disorders ; having never been confined one day

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to my bed in half a century, and having never in my life suffered from headache. My eyes, indeed, have hardly been in a sound condition during the last forty years, but never so as to be long disabled for their valuable function, with the aid, for many years past, of strongly magnifying spectacles. I am, however, not without apprehension that their service cannot last with any long protraction of life. In one point our experience has been parallel ; each has possessed, through a long course of years, the blessing of an estimable and affectionate wife; and many years since each has lost it.-But think what they have attained and enjoyed since they left us! Would we, if we might, recall them from their happy abodes ? I have the same consolation respecting a son, who withered away when near the age of maturity, years before the decease of his mother. Your Mary's amiable descendant, now branching out into

?-will contribute much, I have no doubt, to cheer your evening of life. To me are left two daughters. . . . . Though within three miles of our great town, we live in complete seclusion; having very few acquaintance, and almost nothing of what may be called visiting company, either here or in the town. I have long felt, and every year more of, disinclination to mixed society; and of the very diminutive number of more select individuals whom it was a pleasure to see, no less than three, of my own or even a more advanced age,

have died within less than the last year and a half; so fast and urgently are admonitions repeated; in addition and enforcement to those brought within the last two or three years in the very palpable signs and infirmities of old age. It is very far from likely that I am appointed and how should it be desirable ?) to make any near approach, I do not say to my father's age of nearly ninety--but even my mother's - past eighty.

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