Abbildungen der Seite
PDF
EPUB

was

ob

both Laity and Clergy, inflict on their dependent Bre.
thren: The Difficulties which I met with in Search of
a Lectureship (for that was my Summum Bonum) are
inconceivable ; and I can assure your Lordship, that,
trifling as the Emoluments are of this Preferment, all
che Perfections of human Nature united are scarce
fufficient to a Man, without personal Interest, to in-
sure his Success. The Variety of Distreffes which I
encountered from the different Tempers and Dispo-
sitions of the Gentlemen and Ladies (for so I
liged to call them, who had Votes in the Parish)
the mean and abject Flattery which I was forced to
make Use of, with the many frequent Affronts and
Disappointments I underwent, would swell half a
melancholy Volume. Without enumerating the ne-
ceffary Accomplishments generally expected on these
Occasions, of drinking hard with the Husbands, and
saying soft things to their Wives ; in more Parishes
than one, my Lord, where I have been a Candi-
date, to smoke your Half-dozen of Pipes, and drink
two Bottles at a Sitting, are infinitely more necef-
fary Perfections than any which you could bring
with you from the University ; and it is a Maxim
with many good Citizens, that unless you are what
they call a d----d honest Fellow, you can never be
a good Preacher, or an orthodox Divine; in short,
my Lord, and to be serious, unless a poor Clergy-
man is every Thing that he ought not to be, he can
never be what is every Man's Wish, independent.

I must not, in this place, forget to mention one Rock which young Divines are perpetually splitting on in this Voyage ; and that is, Party: A Candidate muit take great Care how he repeats his political Creed ; as, if he declares himself on one Side, he will inevitably be opposed, slandered and insulted by the other ; it behoves him, therefore, always to join with the strongest: But, what is worst of all, if hc is of no Side (which your Lordlkip knows is the

moft

1

R 4

most prudent Way) it is a million to one if he is fuffered to continue so.

I remember, my Lord, when I set up for the Lectureship of Saint --, the political Thermometer of the Parish was very high : I had at that Time, and retain to this Moment, the utmost Con. tempt for all Parties ; being satisfied, as every Man of common Understanding must be, that there is nothing but Self-interest at the Bottom of them : It was very difficult, however, I found, to persuade other Men that I was not as foolish as themselves.

Mr. Alderman Grub and Mr. Deputy Clove, the two leading Men in the Parish, were at that Time, or at least professed to be, of opposite Principles ; the Alderman a staunch Whig, the Deputy a reputed Tory: I waited on them both for their votes and Interest, the Consequence of which was, that I suce ceeded with neither, both reproaching me with being of a different Way of thinking from themselves. The Alderman was extremely forry he could not serve me: He had a Regard, he had heard, he ad. mired, &c. but, to be plain with me, he was assured I had drank Tea at the Deputy's. And when I went to the Deputy: For my Part' (I shall never forget it, my Lord, to my dying Day) · For my

Part (faid he)I am of no Side ; I despise all « Parties whatsomdever ; but there are People whom

fome People can't like like other People: In short,

I shall always be glad to see you whilst you are ( what you are ; but remember, Mr. Parson, if

dine with Alderman Grub again - you « understand me Your humble Servant.'

These, my Lord, are but an inconsiderable Part of the Miseries and Indignities which a poor Parson is sure to encounter with on this Occasion, but half

ever you

[ocr errors]

the Spurns Which parient Merit from th'Unworthy takes.

T'or

For my own Part, I cannot but think the very single Circumstance of trapesing about from Door to Door in one's Canonicals, perhaps for a Week, is fufficient to deter any Man, who has the least Regard for Cleanliness and Decorum, from canvassing for a City Lectureship. There is not in Nature a more ridiculous Sight than a draggletail Divine, holding up his fpattered Sacerdotals, and dabbling through dirty Streets and blind Alleys, in Search of Civic Preferment.

And now I am upon this Head, my Lord, you must pardon me

А
SHORT DIGRESSION

CONCERNING GOWNS AND CASSOCK S.

A certain right reverend Prelate, now with God, (that I think, my Lord, is the Phrase when we speak of departed Episcopacy) had, amongst other reforming Schemes, entertained a Design of obliging all the Clergy, and especially those of the Metropolis, to appear constantly in their proper Uniform, and on no Account permitting them to be seen in publick without a Gown and Caffock. Of what Service this Reformation could possibly be to Religion and Virtue, I must own I could never discover, whilft the Inconveniencies attending it to the poor Clergy are sufficiently obvious. It has been said, I know, by the Advocates for this Plan, that whenever a Clergyman appears as such, he will always meet with the Respect due to his Function ; and that if he is not treated with Civility, he may thank himself for it. But let us examine a little, and see if these Things are so.

You, my Lord, I make no doubt, meet with all the Deference and Respect which are due to your

exalted you,

per Annum.

exalted Station and Character: But I must beg your Lordship not to attribute it to wrong Motives, or imagine that the Bows made to you in the Street are a Tribute to your Rose and Beaver: The Incense, I assure your Lordship, is offered to the Mitre only. The Reverence is not paid to you as a Pastor of the Flock of Christ; it is your temporal, and not your {piritual Dignity, that attracts the Attention, and commands the Homage of the Multitude: It is not because you have Three thousand Souls under your Care, but that you have Three thousand Pounds

I have read, my Lord, and do verily believe, that there was a Time, though not within our Memory, when the Clergy of all Ranks, dignified or undignified, met with some Degree of Refpect, as such, even in this Kingdom ; but those Days are gone and past, and fo very different are the Manners of this Age, that I would venture one of my best Sermons against your Lordship’s last new Gown and Caffock, (we Philosophers, my Lord, consider one another's Wants) that if your Lordihip, when you go next to the House of Peers, will ftep out of your Chariot at Charing-Cross, without your purple-fringed Gloves, your Footman behind, or any other external Mark that might betray your Quality, you shall walk from thence to Palacejard, without once being obliged to pull off your Hat, in Return for any Compliments paid to your Cloth. Nobody, my Lord, in these our Days, takes any Notice of a Gown and Caffock, except perhaps a Parih Girl, a Chimney-sweeper's Boy, who falutes you as a Brother Black, or now and then a common Soldier, who does not know, (as Chaplains seldom attend) but you may belong to his Regiment. On the other Hand, it is leaft forty to one that you meet with some grofs Affront before you get half way: It is odds but a Hackney Coachman gives his Horses a Lick as foon as he sees

you, splashes you all over, and then winks to his Brother, with

- Smoke the Doctor's new Calfock.' Add to this, that if you do not give the Wall to every Tinker and Taylor you meet, you will be called a proud Priest; If you happen to be fat, they will be sure to fay you have got the Church in your Belly; if you walk fast, you are in a doHurry for your Dinner; if you go flow, and pick your Way, it is,- Mind Parson Prim, how gin

gerly he steps. If your Gown is draggled, a Cara man will call out to you to hold up your Petticoats ; and if you chance to turn up an Alley on any necessary Occasion, the Witticisms upon you are in-. numerable: For after all, my Lord, it is a strange Thing, and what all the World wonders at, that Parsons should eat and drink, and deep, and do a hundred vulgar Things, just like other Men.

And now, my Lord, do you serioufly think it would be any Advantage, or contribute to the Honour and Dignity of the Cloth, to be for ever scarfed and caffucked in the Streets of London? For my own Part, till I am forced to do otherwise, I shall content myself with fkulking unnoticed in my Iron Grey; as, whilft I am mistaken for a Parish Clerk, a Grazier, or an Undertaker, I may at least escape without Ridicule and Abuse, which, if I appear in my Regimentals, as Things are now circumstanced, I can never expect.

But to return to my Subject, or, as we say every Sunday, to proceed to my second Head, and confider

What is expected from Lecturers, and how they are generally treated when they become so. Let us now then suppose that the poor Candidate, after going through all these fiery Trials, should at length be so fortnnate as to make his Calling and Election sure; behold him chosen, licensed, and in-pulpited, (there, my Lord, is another new Word for you,

« ZurückWeiter »