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Him by whom they are registered on high, where the silent sufferer shall meet the full reward."
So magnanimous a soul, so devoid of self, so unmoved by injury, so steadily religious, so compassionate to her fellow-creatures, so thoroughly devoted to God;-to say nothing of the other, is rarely found among the female sex!
Mrs. Hall, who, we have seen, resembled her Brother so remarkably in her person, and in the qualities of her mind, and between whom and him there was so much intense affection throughout life, was not separated from him in death. She lies in the same vault in which Mr. John Wesley's remains were interred but a few months before. She was the last survivor of the original Wesley Family; her Father, Mother, Brothers, and Sisters, having all died before her.
When I first saw this excellent and interesting woman in 1783, I little thought that forty years after I should be led in the course of Providence to rescue her character from detraction, and erect a monument to her memory. Among those who knew her, she had as many admirers as acquaintances; her detractors have been few; and those must be sought among the Biographers of her Brothers; some of whom have dealt, in more than her case, in matters too hard for them, and written of those things which they did not understand. As far as they did this ignorantly, none can be more ready than myself to plead their excuse!
THE REV. CHARLES WESLEY.
Charles Wesley, A. M., Student of Christ Church, Oxford, youngest son of the Rev. Samuel Wesley, Rector of Epworth, and Susanna his wife, was born at Epworth, December 18, 1708; and died in London, March 29, 1788, aged seventy-nine years and three months.
He was a good man, a powerful preacher, and the best Christian Poet, in reference to Hymnology, that has flourished in either ancient or modern times. The Hymns used in the religious service of the Methodists were composed principally by him; and such a collection exists not among any other people. Most Collections among other sects of Christians are indebted to his compositions for some of their principal excellencies.
Mr. Charles Wesley's Life, in connexion with that of his brother John, has been written by Dr. Coke and Mr. Moore; by Dr. Whitehead; and lately by Dr. Robert Southey, Poet Laureat. Of all these Dr. Whitehead's Account claims the preference, as formed from Mr. C. Wesley's own Diary.
MISS KEZZIA WESLEY.
Kezzia, called in the Family Papers Kezze and Kez, appears to have been the youngest child of the Wesley family. The fact in her history of most importance is that which has been so largely considered in the history of her Sister Martha Hall, to which I must refer the Reader.
About 1730 Miss Kezzy became a teacher in a boarding school in Lincoln, where she did not enjoy good health. Indeed she was much afflicted all through life, in consequence of which she was prevented from improving a mind that seems to have been capable of high cultivation. She wrote a peculiarly neat and beautiful hand, even more so than that of her sister Emily.
Her brother Mr. John Wesley wrote frequently to her; and gave her directions both for the improvement of her mind, and her increase in true religion.
To a Letter of this description, in which he recommends a regular course of reading, mentions the proper books, &c., and the best manner of using them, she thus replies; and painfully shews how much she was prevented by the res angusta domi from cultivating her mind as she wished.
"Lincoln, July 3, 1731.
"I should have writ sooner, had not business and indisposition of body prevented me. Indeed sister Pat's going to London shocked me a little, because it was unexpected; and perhaps may have been the cause of my ill health for the last fortnight. It would not have had so great an effect upon my mind if I had known it before: but it is over now
"The past as nothing we esteem; 17.
"I should be glad to see Norris's reflections on the Conduct of Human Understanding, and the book wrote by the Female Author : but I don't expect so great a satisfaction as the seeing either of them, except you should have the good fortune (for me) as to be at Epworth when I am there, which will be in the latter end of August. I shall stay a fortnight or three weeks, if no unferen accident prevent it.
"I must not expect any thing that win give me so much pleasure as the having your company so long; because a disappointment would make me very uneasy. Had your supposition been true, and one of your fine ladies had heard your conference, they would have despised you as a mere ill-bred scholar, who could make no better use of such an opportunity than preaching to young women for the improvement of their minds.
"I am entirely of your opinion, that the pursuit of knowledge
and virtue will most improve the mind: but how to pursue these is the question. Cut off indeed I am from all means which most men, and many women, have of attaining them.
"I have Nelson's Method of Devotion, and The Whole Duty of Man, which is all my stock. As to History and Poetry, I have
not so much as one book.
"I could like to read all the books you mention, if it were in my power to buy them: but as it is not at present, nor have any of my acquaintance I can borrow them of, I must make myself easy without them, if I can; but I had rather you had not told me of them, because it always occasions me some uneasiness that I have not books and opportunity to improve my mind. Now here I have time,—in a morning three or four hours, but want of books:-at home I had books, but no time, because constant illness made me incapable of study. I like Nelson's Method of Devotion; the aiming every day at some particular virtue. I wish you would send me the questions you speak of relative to each virtue, and I would read them every day. Perhaps they may be of use to me in learning contentment, for I have been long endeavouring to practise it; yet every temptation is apt to cause me to fall into the same error.
"I should be glad if you would say a little to sister Emily on the same subject; for she is very likely to have a fit of sickness with grieving for the loss of Miss Emery, who went to Wickham last Saturday to live. I can't persuade her to the contrary, because I am so much addicted to the same failing myself. Pray desire brother Charles to bring Prior, the second part, when he comes; or send it, according to promise, for leaving off snuff till next May: or else I shall think myself at liberty to take as soon as I please. Pray let me know in your net Letter when you design to come down, and whether Brother Wesley and Sister will come with you? If you intend to walk, and brother Charles with you?
"I think it is no great matter whether I say any thing relating to the people of Epworth, or no; for you may be sure he that increaseth knowledge increaseth sorrow. I expect you will come by London; pray, desire sister Pat to write by you.-I have not heard from her since she wen Vou must not measure the length of your next Letter by mine: I an. ill, and can't write any more.
"Your affectionate Sister, KEZZIA WESLEY." "Miss Kitty went to 6 o'clock Prayers till she got the fever; and I never miss except sickness prevent me."
Here we find a mind thirsting after the knowledge both Divine and human; and struggling against many disadvantages, among which comparative poverty and bad health were none of the least. Money was scarce a hundred years ago; and books not easy to be procured. Faith in our Lord Jesus Christ for a present salvation was little
known; and growth ir moral goodness, by a daily reference to, and practice of, some virtu was a poor substitute for the application of that blood which cle. ses from all unrighteousness, and a daily groh in grace, and i. 'he knowledge of our Lord Jesus Christ. I thank God, the trump t does not now give an uncertain sound.
We have already seen that Mr. Wesley Hall, after having engaged himself to Miss Martha Wesley, paid his addresses to Miss Kezzy, and, when on the point of leading her to the altar, was struck with remorse of conscience, and returned to Martha; and that Miss Kezzy went to them on their marriage, and lived with them till her death, which took place March 9, 1741
She appears to have had a general state of ill health, and a long life could not well be expected.
She was to have been married to a gentleman who paid his addresses to her when she resided with her sister Hall, at the Curacy, near Salisbury ;-but Death prevented the match.
It appears that her brother Charles was present when she died; of her closing scene he gives the following account in a Letter to Mr. John Wesley,
"Yesterday morning, [March 9, 1741] sister Kezzy died in the Lord Jesus. He finished His work, and cut it short in mercy. Full of thankfulness, resignation, and love,-without pain or trouble, she commended her spirit into the hands of Jesus,—and fell asleep.”
How powerful is a religious education; and how true the saying, Train up a child in the way he should go; and when he is old, he will not depart from it.
All this family were brought up in the fear of God; and that fear continued with them through life.
We have in the preceding History records of the last hours of most of them, and all those died happy in God. Hetty appears to have been the only one, who was not decidedly religious. Brought up from comparative infancy at a distance from her parents, and indulged by a fond Uncle, she was for a time gay and giddy; but never wicked.
However, the seed of life which was sown in her heart vegetated surely, though slowly. Unparalleled afflictions became the means of urging her to seek her happiness in God. She sought, found, and lived, several years in the possession of the Divine favour, and died in the assurance of faith.
Such a family I have never read of, heard of, or known; nor since the days of Abraham and Sarah, and Joseph and Mary of Nazareth, has there ever been a family to which the human race has been more indebted. ADAM CLARKE.
Milbrook, Feb. 28, 1822.