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Wilberforce was punctual and active beyond his apparent strength; and those who further recollect his diligent attendance on a vast variety of public meetings and committees connected with religious and charitable purposes, will wonder how a frame naturally weak should so long have endured the wear of such exertion. In 1788, when his illness was a matter of deep concern to the Abolitionists, Dr. Warren said that he had not stamina to last a fortnight, No doubt his bodily powers were greatly aided by the placid and happy frame of mind which he habitually enjoyed: but it is important to relate his own opinion, as delivered by an ear-witness, on the physical benefits which he derived from a strict abstinence from temporal affairs on Sundays. “I have often heard him assert that he never could have sustained the labour and stretch of mind required in his early political life, if it had not been for the rest of his Sabbath; and that he could name several of his contemporaries in the vortex of political cares, whose minds had actually given way under the stress of intellectual labour, so as to bring on a premature death, or the still more dreadful catastrophe of insanity and suicide, who, humanly speaking, might have been preserved in health, if they would but conscientiously have observed the Sabbath.” (Venn's Sermon.)
In 1797 Mr. Wilberforce married Miss Spooner, daughter of an eminent banker at Birmingham. Four sons survive him. He died, after a gradual decline, July 29, 1833, in Cadogan Place. He directed that his funeral should be conducted without the smallest pomp; but his orders were disregarded, in compliance with a requisition addressed to his relatives by many of the most distinguished men of all parties, and couched in the following terms :“We, the undersigned Members of both Houses of Parliament, being anxious, upon public grounds, to show our respect for the memory of the late William Wilberforce, and being also satisfied that public honours can never be more fitly bestowed than upon such benefactors of mankind, earnestly request that he
may be buried in Westminster Abbey, and that wc, and others who may agree with us in these sentiments, may have permission to attend his funeral.”' The attendance of both IIouses was numerous.
Mr. Wilberforce was interred within a few yarıls of his great contemporaries Pitt, Fox, and Canning.
Among the other honours paid to his memory may be mentioned the York meeting, held October 23, 1833, at which it was resolved to erect a public memorial in testimony of the high estimation in which Mr. Wilberforce's character and services were held by men of all parties: and further, “that it is advisable (if the sum raised be adequate) to found a benevolent institution, of a useful description, in this county, and to put up a tablet to the memory of Mr. Wilberforce; but should the subscriptions be insufficient to accomplish such an object, that they should be applied to the erection of a monument." An asylum for the indigent blind has in consequence been founded. At llull a monument has likewise been crected to his memory by public subscription; and a statue by Joseph' is about to be placed in Westminster Abbey, also by subscription, the surplus of the fund thus raised being reserved for founding an institution con genial to his principles, as soon as it shall be sufficient for the purpose.
At the period of the publication of this Memoir in the Gallery of Portraits, the authentic materials for a life of Mr. Wilberforce were very scanty. A short memoir, from the pen of a friend, appeared in the Christian Advocate, August 5, 1833; which we believe may be relied on for accuracy, and which scems to form the basis of other memoirs in the periodical publications. The funeral sermons of Messrs. Brown, Scott, and Venn contuin some interesting anecdotes,