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cating knowledge.

Communication is as important as acquisition. It relieves the mind, gives a new tone to its energies, and prepares it for renewed exertion. It gives a complete command over our intellectual resources. Many kinds of truth are incomplete until they are invested with the colouring of emotion."

"Thought improves and strengthens by expression. A good habit of expression can be acquired only by constant practice. Hold communication with every class. They all reflect your ideas and thus impart additional light."

"Thought is most powerful in a condensed form. The analogy of nature supports this view. Our Saviour's ministry presents a striking example. Matured wisdom. appears to prefer this mode of developing itself. The man who uses fewest waste words wields the greatest power."

"In composition exhibit only results; they are all that men in general care about. If the heaps of lumber accumulated in many books were removed, but little would be left. It is the spirit of men's writings we should seize. A few sentences will often convey whole pages of the lucubrations of learned heads."

"Style must be formed by writing much with a clear head and warm heart. Perspicuity and energy will then be secured. If only my mind can be brought to operate with ease and vigour, it will spontaneously select the best words. I detest sentences of a measured length. Nature indicates an intermixture of long and short. Sometimes one wants to represent thought by a single stroke; at other times it is necessary minutely to delineate its features."

"Conversation and writing express the thoughts of the human mind; music its feelings. It gives vent to those deep, mysterious, and delicate emotions of the soul which words cannot represent."


AT HOWDEN. One characteristic of genius-The influence of a good thought incalculable-The Elizabethan writers-His distribution of time-Action an important means of moral improvement-Early rising-The sure and only means of avoiding rash judgments-Aphorisms relative to mental and moral habits.

DURING the last two months Mr. Hessel had been giving the reins to his intellectual energies much too freely. The expectoration of blood he mentions in the preceding chapter was no doubt punitive as well as monitory. We cannot over-draw at the physical, any more than at the commercial, treasury, without re-payment, with large, sometimes enormous, interest. Though he had no attack of hemorrhage he was for some months the victim of considerable debility. His Journal supplies palpable proof of this. It required the time between the 28th of Feb. and the 3rd of Nov. to fill a memorandum book of the same size as the one he had previously filled between the 5th of Dec. and the 20th of Feb. No entry is of any considerable length. Occasionally there is a record to this effect :— "Have not much strength for study. Severe mental efforts lay me prostrate."

15th. "Material for reflection is what I want. It is folly in me to encumber myself with many things that may be useful to others. There is danger of being led astray by others, and thus not arriving at that precise sphere for which I am most fitted."

16th. "It is surprising to notice the different associations which different minds form. To some men one cannot speak with ardour on any subject, but some term employed


will excite a number of degrading associations never contemplated. These minds, unable to catch the scope and aim of the speaker, select some part of his description which they wrest from its purpose, invest with their own degrading imagery, and then cavil at it."

"If one's circumstances are not of a character to kindle ardour it is well to create such if possible. Fairly commit yourself, and then summon every energy to meet the exigency."

"The illumination of the Spirit is worth more than all the books in the world as an aid to the knowledge of those truths which most concern me. Why should I be so anxious for human, and so indifferent to Divine, knowledge? My aim as to this world shall be humble, in order that it may take a sublime flight into that which is to come."

"There are many delusions in the world; I wish to see through them. The high opinions of others can do me no real good unless I possess genuine excellence. I trust I can say before God that I had much rather be felt by my fellowmen than talked of by them."

21st. "Draw maps upon the tablet for recreation—an excellent plan to learn geography by amusement."

25th. "Genius feels its own wants and finds means to supply them. It cultivates itself. It may avail itself of the assistance of other minds, but can never submit to their control. By the law of nature it gains the ascendancy."

"Learning is useless unless applied to the practical purposes of life. Let me seek to make immediate good use of all I acquire. The more I turn it over the more good it will do to others, and the more valuable it will become to myself."-The first sentence of this paragraph needs qualification. It by no means follows that because the Latin, Greek, and Euclid, which a youth has acquired, cannot be

subsequently turned to any practical purpose, it is therefore useless. Such learning is invaluable as a disciplinary and invigorating process. Mr. Hessel doubtless meant to protest against the acquisition of learning merely for its own sake. And thus viewed the sentence merits approval.

"The influence of a good thought is incalculable. What mighty effects have the fragments of our Saviour's ministry produced in the world! One single idea may determine a destiny."-Yes, not one destiny but many. A religious tract was one day picked up in a barrack-yard by a soldier. That tract led to that soldier's conversion. He became an able minister of the gospel; was elevated to a high ecclesiastical position; wrote one of the ablest modern treatises on the evidences of Christianity; and has been instrumental in turning many to righteousness. That soldier is now the celebrated Bishop Mac Ilvaine.


The following is the Journal he mentioned in his last letter to me :-March 28th "I have been lately led to think less of formal treatises and more of those incidental remains of human thought which the great and good have left Sacred writ consists of fragments; and though replete with beauties of every description, much of it is at the farthest remove from elaborate composition. The writers of the Elizabethan era were almost compelled to wield the pen. They were placed in situations which fired their spirits, and their immortal works were wrested from them by the force of circumstances. There are few ingenious minds conversant with the writers of that period who do not seek to imbibe something of their spirit. The clearness with which they viewed truth, the firmness with which they grasped it, and the manliness with which they contended for it, gave to their writings a value which places them at the head of our national literature. We live in a different age. The public mind flows in a new direction, and all who aim to be instructors must adapt themselves to present exi



gencies. The man who has half the eye of a philosopher must see that the metaphysical treatises of the period to which I have referred are not adapted to our age. Truth, instead of the garb of a fiery disputant, must put on a vestment of simplicity. There is no power more to be coveted than that of rendering important truths interesting to the community. You may write and speak after the most approved models-your arrangement of thought may be severely correct-your discourses may be constructed upon the strictest logical principles, but after all, what advantages worth naming are secured if the people will not hear you. There is danger lest, under the idea of mental cultivation, we abandon nature. I have no doubt that many minds have been injured by such cultivation. The fair and healthy plant, which under favourable auspices might have grown to a stately tree, has been cropped into a dwarfish shrub.

"I deem it advisable never to write without some worthy object, believing that the value of our compositions will be as are the ends at which we aim. In seeking mental and moral improvement, it is not enough that we attend to the operations of our minds, we should place ourselves amid such influences as will excite our best faculties. I have found that sentiments which have begged as it were for communication, have been much more valuable than those elicited by effort."

April 5th. "I have been unusually impressed of late with the importance of serving God with all my powers. My heart has been peculiarly softened; ambitious and unholy feelings have been subdued, and heavenly affections strengthened. I have had more ardent longings after excellence, and an unusual spirit of prayer has been imparted. I have sometimes been unable to utter my feelings, but in a silent agony of supplication have thrown myself at the feet of the Divine Majesty and wept. I need not tell you

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