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WILLIAM ALLEN AT HOME.

quently enlivened by visitors from foreign parts.

His house was almost always the home of some pilgrim from afar. Having himself met with much kindness abroad, he conscientiously improved the many opportunities afforded in the metropolis for showing hospitality to the stranger.

Francis Martin, of Bourdeaux, (now minister of the French church in London,)* and Emilien Frossard, of Montauban ; Charles Vernet, of Geneva, and Alexander D'Junkovsky, of St. Petersburg, all write to him with something like filial affection; delighting to call to mind his counsels, and congratulating themselves on having lived under his roof. With others whom he had known in distant lands he maintained a pleasant correspondence. Mariamne Vernet, of Geneva, a deeply-tried, but most excellent woman; her daughter, the Baroness de Stael; the family of M. Courtois, of Toulouse; and Professor Tholuck, of

* During the hundred days, this gentleman was working incessantly at Paris, in the establishment of schools of scriptural instruction, on the plan of the British and Foreign School Society. Napoleon had issued orders for such schools to be called into existence with all possible dispatch, and Mr. Martin was in the bureau of M. Carnot, both overcome with fatigue, when the news of the battle of Waterloo put a stop to their labours. The returning Bourbons had no sympathy with the movement.

LOSES HIS ONLY CHILD.

133

Halle, all wrote to him, occasionally, as to 2 Christian friend.

In 1823, he lost his only child, and was deeply afflicted by the event. . When thinking,' he says, ' of the probability of my dearest earthly treasure, in whom my tenderest affections were concentrated, being taken from me, I have prayed in an agony, and with many tears, that such a cup might pass from me, nevertheless, I dared only ask it in conformity with the Divine will.' When she died, he was enabled to say, “The Lord gave, and the Lord hath taken away; blessed be the name of the Lord.' The Princess Sophia Mestchersky, Prince Galitzin, and other friends, sent him, on this occasion, letters of condolence, which prove how near he was to the hearts of the pious writers.

CHAP. V.

ADVANCED LIFE. SICKNESS AND DEATH.

The year

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We must now approach the closing scenes of Mr. Allen's life and labours. 1842 saw him fast breaking up. In the month of September, 1839, he began to complain of a 'feeling of sinking and great weakness. He notes, about the same time, that he had been overdone. My memory,' he says, is failing. I have noticed it for some time past. •I feel the infirmities of age coming on. Lord, prepare me to come to thee.' Twenty years before this (in 1819), meditating, on the banks of the Neva, upon the vanity of the world, his thoughts found utterance in these words: “Oh, how little are all the pleasures and honours of the world, compared with the presence of the Redeemer and Comforter, when the Spirit itself beareth witness with our spirit, that we are the children of God ! Now, the world itself was receding, and the teachings of truth were about to be tested by the realities of eternity. Then, he had to complain of numberless occupations, of strong inward trials,' of “imperfections staring' him in the face every day. Now, he is privileged to speak of DECLINING IN STRENGTH. 135 * retirement and sweet calm,' with praise and thanksgiving.' Then, he had to pray, • Oh to be delivered from pride and selfseeking! Oh for that state of mind in which I should not feel hurt if all the world slighted me!' Still,—for grace seeketh more grace,,he is constrained to supplicate for more humility,' and to wonder' that he, so unworthy, should feel peace in attempting publicly to advocate the Redeemer's blessed

cause.

William Allen had now passed his seventieth year, and his declining strength compelled him to resign many of the public engagements in which he had so long delighted. But he could not be idle; and he wished to avoid the peevishness and querulousness too often incident to the latter years even of Christian people. He bethought himself, therefore, of the very best method for making old age lovely. He determined to cultivate the acquaintance of all the young persons within his reach, and had fixed evenings for their amusement and instruction He notices with much satisfaction the success of this pleasant device for securing sunshine in all weathers.

A year more rolls on, and the death of his beloved niece, Eliza Bradshaw, who resided with him, again brings eternity very near. am now,' he says, “much oftener than the re

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136 HE RECEIVES LOVE AND SYMPATHY, turning day, looking towards the end of all things here, and fervent prayers arise for an increase of faith and love. O Lord, make me and keep me thine, in time and in eternity. Strong cries ascend by night and day to our Advocate with the Father, through whose atoning sacrifice alone pardon and reconciliation can be experienced. His beloved friend, Joseph John Gurney, hearing of his increasing weakness, writes to him in these terms: Thou hast been a kind and faithful father in the truth to me; and heartily do I love thee. So long as memory lasts, I shall never forget thy kindness; and sweet is the hope, that, deeply unworthy as I am of the least of the Lord's mercies, we shall spend an eternity together, in peace and joy unutterable. It is unspeakably precious to have this hope, and to know it to be as an anchor of our souls, sure and stedfast.' How speedily were these blessed hopes realized !

Though not now often heard in public ministry, there were still times when he was thus engaged ; and more than a few,' say his biographers, who were present at his last vocal prayer, at Stoke Newington Meeting, will long remember the solemnity with which it was accompanied. Amongst the fervent petitions which he offered in great brokenness of spirit on this occasion, were the following:

• Permit us, O heavenly Father, we be

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