Page images
PDF
EPUB

"Undoubtedly," he says, "the GIN-SHOP may be considered as the source of great destruction and of demoralization to the poor. I view the GIN-SHOP in every new neighbourhood with very great pain. The GIN-SHOP, rising like a palace, absorbs the wealth, and the health, and the life of the labouring classes. I call them whited sepulchres, full of rottenness and dead men's bones!"

Having been asked whether the addition of water, merely, effects any change in the property of diluted spirit, he replied, “IT DOES NOT. Diluted spirit destroys as effectually, though more slowly than undiluted spirit, but there is an idea among drinkers that dilution renders it more safe!!" In illustration of a question respecting the uselessness, and worse than uselessness of spirituous liquor for persons in health, the doctor related the following anecdote. "I recollect being consulted by a commander of a British merchantman, who was carried into Algiers. The Dey immediately stripped him naked, and chained him to another British prisoner. He then placed him on the public works from four in the morning till four in the afternoon; then he was turned into a cell with his naked companion till four in the morning, and there were placed by his side a pitcher of water and a loaf of black bread. I asked him if he could eat it? He said, 'Oh, yes! it was very sweet indeed!' 'What did it consist

[ocr errors]

of?' It was made of the black wheat of Africa and the vegetable locust, but it was appetite that gave it sweetness.' Now it is remarkable that this man was a prisoner for nine months, while he was fed on one pound of bread and a pitcher of water per day, and had to perform hard work under such a tyrant; and to my question, ‘Did you enjoy health?' his reply was, Perfect health, I had not a day's illness. I was as lean as I could be, but I was perfectly well!'

6

"When he was set at liberty, and he had returned to British fare, then he had to consult me as a physician!"

A SEA OFFICER'S ACKNOWLEDGMENT ON THE DEATH OF HIS WIFE.

WITH respect to the extension of good fellowship in domestic life, perhaps heads of families (masters and mates at sea), are not aware of the mischief which they inconsi

derately do, when in the warmth of their feeling they persuade those around them to partake of their cups.

Being called to a female in the last stage of disorganization of body and demoralization of mind, I found her within a few days of inevitable death. After I had examined the case, and had acknowledged that nothing could be done, the husband took me aside, and said, "Sir, I regret to acknowledge that I am the unintentional cause of this woman's death!" He added, "When I married her she was as lovely and innocent a young woman as I ever beheld; but having been accustomed to a sea life, and to take my grog with impunity, I persuaded her to drink with me. Two years elapsed before I succeeded, but afterwards I could never get her to leave it off."

Now that unhappy woman perished, not because she loved the liquor, but because the habit of taking it was established. May this be a warning to others.

MEDICUS.

NAPOLEON'S LETTER TO THE WIDOW OF ADMIRAL BRUEYS.

"MADAME,-Your husband has been killed by a cannonball while combating on his quarter-deck. He died without suffering, the death the most easy, and the most envied by the brave. I feel warmly for your grief. The moment which separates us from the object which we love is terrible; we feel isolated on the earth; we almost experience the convulsions of the last agony. The faculties of the soul are annihilated; its connection with the earth is preserved only across a veil, which distorts every thing. We feel in such a situation that there is nothing which yet binds us to life, that it were far better to die; but when after such first and unavoidable throes we press our children to our hearts, tears and more tender sentiments arise, life becomes bearable for their sakes. Yes, Madame, they will open the fountains of your heart; you will watch their childhood; educate their youth: you will speak to them of their father; of your present grief, and of the loss which they and the republic have sustained in his death. After having resumed the interest in life by the chord of maternal love, you will perhaps feel some consolation from the friendship and warm interest which I shall ever take in the widow of my friend."

This sympathy is humane, but not Christian!

PHILO-NAVIGATOR.

REV. G. BURDER'S SEA SERMONS.

MR. EDITOR,

READING the Memoirs of the late Rev. George Burder, I find the following entry in his diary, which might be interesting to the readers of the PILOT. From the interest Mr. Burder appears to have taken in the welfare of seamen, even from the commencement of his ministry, I have been led to make the extract.

Hackney, Jan. 1836.

J. J. B.

"Dec. 30, 1821.

"A few days ago I finished a volume containing twelve plain discourses to seamen, entitled Sea Sermons.' The great attention lately paid to sailors-preparing the Floating Chapel on the Thames-holding meetings of prayer on board ships-publishing Tracts and a Sailor's Magazine, have induced me to think that sermons particularly adapted to seamen, and on subjects connected with sea affairs, would be seasonable. Accordingly, when at Ramsgate with my family in September last, I commenced the work, and wrote about six of the sermons; and since our return, have printed the volume.

"It appears that many seamen are fond of reading, and have occasionally a good deal of time on board; and there are, I believe, more than a few masters of vessels who are in the habit of reading a sermon to their crew on Sundays; but there are very few seamen well suited to that purpose. I have also added a few prayers, as some good seamen may not be able to pray extempore, especially before others.

"I bless God, who has enabled me to accomplish this little work; and I pray that He will be pleased, by the grace of his Holy Spirit, to bless the reading of those sermons; that when I am gone hence, and silent in the dust, I may yet be speaking to the poor seamen on our own coast, and in foreign lands.

"I am indebted to the Rev. R. Marks for his assistance in correcting the nautical phrases. He was once a lieutenant on board a king's ship, and when called by grace, often read my Village Sermons, and other books, to the men on board. He was much persecuted, and at last left the service, and obtained orders in the Church of England."

THE CONVERTED CHRISTIAN SAILOR.

It was a lovely night. All on board could say from the very heart, "The heavens declare the glory of God, and the firmament showeth his handy work." All sails were set, and we were moving swiftly, as in a thing of life, on our way to Boston. George was on duty at the bows. I felt deep interest in him. I had heard his voice in prayer, and seen a Bible in his hand. Indeed, his whole manner was unlike that of any of his fellows on board the ship. As he was standing at his post on the watch, I went up to him rather abruptly, and said, "George, are you not a Christian?" His countenance brightened in the light of the moon, as he looked me in the face, and I saw at once that I had touched a subject near his heart. A pious soul loves to speak of the goodness of God. With much emotion he replied, "I trust that I am; I think I can testify to the goodness of God in the gift of his Son for my soul." There was so much humility in his manner, and such an evidence of grace in his soul in what he said, that I longed to know more of him. I asked him to tell me something of his history, when he gave me this narrative:

“I have always been a sailor. My father was a sailor before me. My mother was a pious woman; and whenever I went on shore to see her, she used to say a great many things to me about my soul. I paid no attention to them, but lived as though I had no soul. I was a fool, as I said in my heart, There is no God.' Boldly did I profane the name of Him who says, The Lord will not hold him guiltless that taketh his name in vain.' My frame trembles when I look back upon those days of sin and daring. It is a wonder that God did not cut me down in the midst of my course. Most richly did I deserve the lowest place in the world of the lost. In the midst of storms, at sea, when the thunders and lightnings were abroad—faint emblems of the wrath of God — and when far up on the mast, or out on the yards, in imminent peril of being plunged into the deep, I have called on God to curse my soul. Thus I went on from year to year, seeing the works of the Lord, and his wonders on the waters, and experiencing his goodness all the while, till the year eighteen. This year I shipped under a pious captain, which I had never done before. He was a good man, and

did much for the good of his crew. tures to us, and prayed with us.

moved.

He read the Scrip

For a while I was un

After some time, however, I began to tremble.

The word of God convinced me of sin and of righteousness and of judgment to come. I saw my danger, and felt it too. My sins came up before me, and appeared as mountains that must for ever separate me from peace and happiness. I was a miserable man, and thought I must always be so. At last I opened my heart to the captain. He felt for me, and told me of the mercy of God in Christ Jesus. With tears in his eyes, he directed me to behold the Lamb of God, which taketh away the sin of the world. My heart broke. Tears of penitence ran down my cheeks; my faith took hold on the Son of God, as he reached out his hand to help me. With all my soul I yielded myself up to him. He poured the oil of joy and peace into my broken heart, and bound up my bleeding wounds. Yes, he spoke peace, perfect peace to my soul. I was born again. I felt that I was a new creature. With the cup of salvation in my hand, I called on the name of the Lord. My joy was full, and thus it has been from that time till now. O that all would come to the waters and drink. Come to the wells of salvation, ye dying children of men.' Here he paused. His emotions were too great to permit him to go on. At that time, the writer of this was in his sins. The sailor's words went to his heart. A few weeks after, he was standing before the altar of God publicly professing his interest in the blood of Christ. In the judgment day he hopes to appear as a star in the crown of the pious sailor.

S. Reg. Telegraph.

THE COMPASS.

THE storm was loud; before the blast
Our gallant bark was driven;
Their foaming crests the billows rear'd,
And not one friendly star appear'd
Through all the vault of heaven.

Yet dauntless still the steersman stood,
And gaz'd, without a sigh,

Where, pois'd on needle bright and slim,
And lighted by a lantern dim,

The compass met his eye.

« PreviousContinue »