and especially to please one, of Mr. Burr's taste and character, in whom he was exceedingly happy. But what crowned all her excellencies, and was her chief glory, was RELIGION. She appeared to be the subject of divine impressions, when seven or eight years old; and she made a public profession of religion, when about fifteen. Her conversation, until her death, was exemplary, as becometh godliness."-She was, in every respect, an ornament to her sex, being equally distinguished for the suavity of her manners, her literary accomplishments, and her unfeigned regard to religion. Her religion did not cast a gloom over her mind, but made her cheerful and happy, and rendered the thought of death transporting. She left a number of manuscripts, on interesting subjects, and it was hoped they would have been made public; but they are now lost.

Mrs. Edwards did not long survive her husband. In September, she set out, in good health, on a journey to Philadelphia, to take care of her two orphan grand-children, which were now in that city; and had been, since the death of Mrs. Burr. As they had no relations in those parts, Mrs. Edwards proposed to take them into her own family. She arrived there, by the way of Princeton, Sept. 21, in good health, having had a comfortable journey. But, in a few days, she was seized with a violent dysentery, which, on the fifth day, put an end to her life, October 2d, 1758, in the 49th year of her age. She said not much in her sickness; being exercised, most of the time, with violent pain. On the morning of the day she died, she apprehended her death was near, when she expressed her entire resignation to God, and her desire that he might be glorified in all things; and that she might be enabled to glorify him to the last and continued in such a temper, calm and resigned, till she died.

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Her remains were carried to Princeton, and deposited with those of Mr. Edwards. Thus they, who were in their lives remarkably lovely and pleasant, in their death were not much divided. Here, the father and mother, the son and daughter, were laid together in the grave, within the space of a little more than a year; though a few months before, their dwelling was more than 150 miles apart: -two Presidents of the same College, and their consorts, than whom, it will doubtless be hard to find four persons, more valuable and useful!

By these repeated strokes, following in quick succession, the American Church, within a few months, sustained a loss, which probably, in so short a space of time, will never be equalled.

Mr. and Mrs. Edwards lived together, in the married state, above thirty years; in which time, they had eleven children, three sons, and eight daughters. The second daughter died, Feb. 14,

1748. The third daughter was Mrs. Burr. The youngest daughter, Elizabeth, died soon after her parents.


The Trustees of the College erected a marble monument, over the grave of Mr. Edwards, which has the following inscription:

M. S.

Reverendi admodum Viri,

Collegii Novæ Cæsariæ Præsidis.

Natus apud Windsor Connecticutensium V. Octobris.
A. D. MDCCIII, s. v.

Patre Reverendo Timotheo Edwards oriundus,
Collegio Yalensi educatus;

Apud Northampton Sacris initiatus, xv Februarii,


Illinc dimissus XXII Junii, MDCCL.
Et Munus Barbaros instituendi accepit.
Præses Aulæ Nassovicæ creatus xvI Februarii,


Defunctus in hoc Vico xxII Martii sequentis, s. N.
Etatis LV, heu nimis brevis!
Hic jacet mortalis pars.
Qualis Persona quæris, Viator?
Vir Corpore procero, sed gracili,
Studiis intensissimis, Abstinentia, et Sedulitate,

Ingenii acumine, Judicio acri, et Prudentiâ,
Secundus Nemini Mortalium.

Artium liberalium et Scientiarum peritia insignis,
Criticorum sacrorum optimus, Theologus eximius,
Ut vix alter æqualis; Disputator candidus;
Fidei Christianæ Propugnator validus et invictus;
Conconiator gravis, serius, discriminans;
Et, Deo ferente, Successu

Pietate præclarus, Moribus suis severus,
Ast aliis æquus et benignus.
Vixit dilectus, veneratus-

Sed, ah! lugendus

Quantos Gemitus discedens ciebat!
Heu Sapientia tanta! heu Doctrina et Religio!
Amissum plorat Collegium, plorat et Ecclesia:
At, eo recepto, gaudet


Abi, Viator, et pia sequere Vestigia.

*See Appendix K.



Concluding Remarks.

THE writer of the preceding pages regrets, at least as sincerely as any of his readers, that the collection of facts, which they contain, is not more full and complete; yet, in consequence of the long interval, which has elapsed since the death of President Edwards, they are all, which, after much time, and labour and travel, he has been able to discover. Such as they are, they constitute, with his writings, the body of materials, from which we are to form our estimate of his character, as an intelligent and moral being.

In reviewing them, it is delightful to remember, in the outset, that, so far as the human eye could judge, the individuals of both the families from which he derived his descent, were, as far back, as we can trace them, distinguished for their piety. Each married pair, in both lines, with that care and conscientiousness, which so generally marked the Pilgrims of New England, and their Puritan ancestors, trained up their children in the fear of God; and continued, through life, to supplicate daily the Divine favour, on them and their descendents, in all succeeding generations. Their prayers, ascending separately and successively indeed, were yet embodied in their influence, and from Him, who "showeth mercy to thousands of generations of them that love him, and keep his commandments," called down concentrated blessings on their common offspring. So full, so rich, were these blessings, as bestowed on the subject of this memoir, that, perhaps, no one example on record furnishes a stronger encouragement to parents, to wrestle with God for the holiness and the salvation of their posterity.

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It was owing to the moral influence thus exerted, and to the Divine favour thus secured, that, when we review the childhood and youth of Mr. Edwards, we find them not only passing without a stain upon his memory, but marked by a purity and excellence, rarely witnessed at so early a period of life. The religious impressions, made upon his mind in childhood, were certainly frequent, deep, and of long continuance, and had a powerful effect upon his ultimate character; yet the estimate, formed of their real nature by different persons, will probably be different. His own estimate of them was, unquestionably, that they were not the result of real religion.

The circumstances, which led him to this conclusion, were these

two-First, That, after he had cherished the hope of his own conversion, for a considerable period, and had experienced a high degree of joy, in what he regarded as communion with God, he lost imperceptibly this spirituality of mind, relinquished for a season the "constant performance" of the practice of secret prayer, and cherished many affections of a worldly and sinful character:-Secondly, That, when he recovered from this state of declension, his views of divine truth, particularly those connected with the Sovereignty of God, were in many respects new, and far more clear and delightful, than any which he had previously formed.

Without calling in question the fact, that a given individual has, on some accounts, decidedly superior advantages for judging of his own christian character, than others enjoy; and without presuming to decide on the correctness of the estimate, thus formed by Mr. Edwards; it may not be improper to state various circumstances, which lead me to suspect, that it may perhaps have been erroneous: 1. The declension, of which he complains, appears to have been chiefly, or wholly, a declension in the state of the affections. 2. Those impressions began, when he was seven or eight years of age, and were so powerful and lasting, as to render religion the great object of attention, for a number of years. As made on the mind of such a child, they were very remarkable, even if we suppose them to have resulted in piety. 3. The season of his declension commenced soon after his admission to college, when he was twelve years of age. That a truly pious child, in consequence of leaving his early religious connections and associations, and especially the altar and the incense of the parental sanctuary, of removing to a new place of residence, of entering on a new course of life, of forming new acquaintances and attachments, of feeling the strong attractions of study, and the powerful incentives of ambition, and of being exposed to the new and untried temptations of a public seminary; should, for a season, so far decline from his previous spirituality, as to lose all hope of his own conversion, is so far from being a surprizing event, that, in ordinary cases, it is perhaps to be expected. Piety, at its commencement in the mind, is usu ally feeble; and especially is it so, in the mind of a child. How often are similar declensions witnessed, even at a later age. Yet the subject of such backsliding, though, during its continuance, he may well renounce the hope of his conversion, does not usually regard the period of his recovery, as the commencement of his christian life. 4. He had not, at this period, made a public profession of religion; and, of course, was not restrained from such declengion by his own covenant, by communion with christians, or by the consciousness, that, as a visible christian, his faults were subjected to the inspection and the censure of the surrounding world. 5. Though charitable in judging others, he was at least equally severe in judging himself. 6. He appears, at a very early period, to have VOL. I.


formed views of the purity of the christian character-of the degree of freedom from sin, and of the degree of actual holiness, requisite to justify the hope of conversion-altogether more elevated in their nature, than the truth will warrant. 7. That his views of divine truth-particularly of the Sovereignty of God-should have opened, after the age of twelve, with so much greater clearness and beauty, as to appear wholly new, was to have been expected from the nature of the case. 8. At a subsequent period, when his mind was incessantly occupied by the unusual perplexities of his tutorship, he complained of a similar declension. 9. The purity, strength and comprehensiveness, of his piety, as exhibited immediately after his public profession of christianity, was so much superior to what is frequently witnessed, in christians of an advanced standing, as almost to force upon us the conviction that it commenced, not a few months before, at the time of his supposed conversion, but-at a much earlier period of life. Rare indeed is the fact, that holiness is not, at its commencement in the soul," as a grain of mustard-seed, which is the least of all seeds;" and though in the rapidity of its growth, it differs widely in different soils, yet time is indispensably necessary, before its fruits can cover the full-grown plant, like the clusters on the vine. These considerations, and particularly the last, have led me to believe, that the early religious impressions of Mr. Edwards are to be regarded, as having been the result of a gracious operation of the Spirit of God, upon his heart.

Under this happy influence, exerted in childhood, his character was formed. It prompted him then to study the Scriptures, to love prayer, to sanctify the sabbath, and to pay an unusual attention to the duties of religion. It inspired him with reverence towards God, and made him afraid to sin. It rendered him conscientious in the performance of every relative duty, in manifesting love and gratitude, honour and obedience, towards his parents, kindness and courteousness towards his sisters, and the other companions of his childhood, respect and deference to his superiors, and good will to all around him. It led him also, at a very early period, to overcome that aversion to mental labour, which is so natural to man, and to devote himself with exemplary assiduity to the great duty, daily assigned him, of storing his mind with useful knowledge. Some of our readers, we are aware, may perhaps regard the recollections of his earlier years, as of little importance; but those, who cherishr common sympathies, with the whole body of evangelical christians, in the deep interest which they feel in his character and efforts, and who reflect, that the foundation of that character and of those efforts was then laid, will require of us no apology for thus exhibiting the comparative innocence and purity, the docility and amiableness, the tenderness of conscience, the exemplary industry, and the ar

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