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In every faith, through every clime,
Your pilgrim steps we trace;
Each hallowed spot to grace;
And choral hymns resound;
To time's remotest bound.
Your virtuous toils endure !
And your reward is sure.
REGINALD HEBER, 1783-1826.
REGINALD HEBER, the son of the Rev. Reginald Heber, was born at Malpas, in Cheshire, on the 21st of April, 1783. His youth was distinguished by a precocity of talent, docility of temper, a love of reading, and a veneration for religion. The eagerness, indeed, with which he read the Bible in his early years, and the accuracy with which he remembered it, were quite remarkable. After completing the usual course of elementary instruction, he entered the University of Oxford in 1800. In the first year he gained the university prize for Latin verse, and in 1813 he wrote his poem of “Palestine," which was received with distinguished applause.' His academical career was brilliant from its commencement to its close. After taking his degree, and gaining the university prize for the best English prose essay, he set out, in 1805, on a continental tour. He returned the following year, and in 1807 “ took orders," and was settled in Hodnet, in Shropshire, where for many years he discharged the duties of his large parish with the most exemplary assiduity.
In 1809, he married, and in the same year published a series of hymns, "appropriate for Sundays and principal holidays of the year." In 1812, he commenced a “ Dictionary of the Bible," and published a volume entitled “ Poems and Translations," the translations being chiefly from Pindar. After being advanced to two or three ecclesiastical preferments,
1 "Such a poem, composed at such an age, has indeed some, but not many, parallels in our language. Its copious diction, its perfect numbers, its images so well chosen, diversified so happily, and treated with so much discretion and good taste, and, above all, the ample knowledge of Scripture and of writings illustrative of Scripture displayed in it-all these things might have seemed to bespeak the work of a man who had been long choosing and begun late,' rather than of a stripling of nineteen.'
Quarterly Review, vol. xxxv. P. 451.
in 1822 he received the offer of the bishopric of Calcutta, made vacant by
Besides the works of Bishop Heber already mentioned, there was pub-
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nald Heber, was born at Malphie
distinguished by ve of reading, and a Federada which he read the Bible in his he remembered it, were que vurse of elementary instruction 10. In the first year be gained n 1813 he wrote bis poem
d inguished applause. His ac jencement to its close. After "sily prize for the best Engis inental tour. He returned the and was settled in Hodnet
, is harged the duties of his large
If the Israelites were endowed, beyond the nations of mankind, with wise and righteous laws, with a fertile and almost impreg. nable territory, with a race of valiant and victorious kings, and a God who (while they kept his ways) was a wall of fire against their enemies round about them; if the kings of the wilderness did them homage, and the lion-banner of David and Solomon was reflected at once from the Mediterranean and the Euphrates--it was that the way of the Lord might be made known by their means upon earth, and that the saving health of the Messiah might become conspicuous to all nations.
My brethren, it has pleased the Almighty that the nation to which we ourselves belong is a great, a valiant, and an understanding nation; it has pleased Him to give us an empire on which the sun never sets--a commerce by which the remotest nations of the earth are become our allies, our tributaries, I had almost said our neighbors; and by means (when regarded as human means, and distinct from his mysterious providence), so inadequate, as to excite our alarm as well as wonder--the sovereignty over these wide and populous heathen lands. But is it for our sakes that he has given us these good gifts and wrought these great marvels in our favor ? Are we not rather set up on high in the earth, that we may show forth the light by which we
published a series of hyen olidays of the year." In 1:14
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are guided, and be the honored instruments of diffusing those blessings which we ourselves enjoy, through every land where our will is law, through every tribe where our wisdom is held in reverence, and in every distant isle which our winged vessels visit? If we value, then (as who does not value ?) our renown among mankind; if we exult (as who can help exulting?) in the privileges which the providence of God has conferred on the British nation; if we are thankful (and God forbid we should be otherwise) for the means of usefulness in our power; and if we love (as who does not love ?) our native land, its greatness and prosperity, let us see that we, each of us in our station, are promoting, to the best of our power, by example, by exertion, by liberality, by the practice of Christian justice and every virtue, the extension of God's truth among men, and the honor of that holy name whereby we are called. There have been realms before as famous as our own, and (in relation to the then extent and riches of the civilized world), as powerful and as wealthy, of which the traveller sees nothing now but ruins in the midst of a wilderness, or where the mariner only finds a rock for fishers to spread their nets. Nineveh once reigned over the east ; but where is Nineveh now? Tyre had once the commerce of the world; but what is become of Tyre? But if the repentance of Nineveh had been persevered in, her towers would have stood to this day.
Had the daughter of Tyre brought her gifts to the Temple of God, she would have continued a queen forever.
THE STREAM OF LIFE.
Life bears us on like the stream of a mighty river. Our boat, at first, glides down the narrow channel, through the playful murmuring of the little brook and the winding of its grassy border. The trees shed their blossoms over our young heads, the flowers on the brink seem to offer themselves to our young hands; we are happy in hope, and we grasp eagerly at the beauties around us—but the stream hurries on, and still our hands are empty.
Our course in youth and manhood is along a wider and deeper flood, amid objects more striking and magnificent. We are animated by the moving picture of enjoyment and industry passing before us; we are excited by some short-lived disappointment. The stream bears us on, and our joys and our griefs are alike left behind us. We may be shipwrecked, but we cannot be delayed ; whether rough or smooth, the river hastens towards its home, till
the roar of the ocean is in our ears, and the tossing of its waves is beneath our feet, and the land lessens from our eyes, and the floods are lifted up around us, and we take our leave of earth and its inhabitants, until of our further voyage there is no witness save the Infinite and Eternal.
The poems of Bishop Heber, though not distinguished for any great vigor or originality, are certainly very chaste, elegant, and pleasing. Many of his hymns have been favorites in the Christian church among all de. nominations; for, while they possess all the simplicity and true Christian feeling which should characterize such compositions, they have more ele. vation and poetic fervor than is usually met with in our sacred lyrics. As has been justly said, “they breathe a fervent devotion in the most poetical language and short melodious verse."
Rest of thy sons, amid thy foes forlorn,
THE ISRAELITES DELIVERED FROM THEIR OPPRESSORS.
Oh! welcome came the morn, where Israel stood
The stubborn slave, by hope's new beams subdued,
THE RISE OF SALEM.
Yet still destruction sweeps the lonely plain,
And who is He? the vast, the awful form,