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dignified courtesy and propriety, which elicited universal commendation. The entertainments provided by him on those occasions, were decidedly not inferior, either in sumptuousness or elegance, to any of the preceding times; and his demeanour, towards the numerous guests, was that of a high-bred Christian Nobleman, rendering to all the honour and respect that was due.
Need it here be farther said, or repeated, that he was likewise constantly liberal and bountiful ? His liberality (according to the modern acceptation of the term) some, perhaps, may feel disposed to call in question; but not any who truly knew him, or sought his aid. Never did there live a man less inclined to bigotry than the late Bishop of Durham, unless it be bigotry to hold fast the truth, and not to place it on the same level with error. He could behave himself kindly towards persons of all religious denominations, and respect their scruples and various opinions, provided they were held in faith and charity, so as to be free from the bitterness of a sectarian spirit. With Roman Catholics, notwithstanding his uncompromising opposition to their political claims, he used to be on friendly terms; nor did the Presbyterians and others, within his Diocese, find him ungracious or reluctant, when their personal necessities were made known to him; only he would not contribute towards the expense of Dissenting places of worship, nor in any way towards the support of the “ Dissenting interest.” Except this evidently proper restriction, he continually dealt with a free and open hand to the many who would apply, and to not a few also who were reluctant to apply for his assistance. Large, indeed, as his means were, his heart appears to have been enlarged in a full proportion towards all whom he could relieve or gratify. It has been seen (though very inadequately) by his letters how freely he ministered to the necessities of Llandaff, after his translation to another See; and the sums which he dispensed to public institutions, both in his Diocese and in other quarters, are too well known to be here recounted : it has been stated that he appropriated considerably more than a thousand pounds of his yearly revenue, to the augmentation of small Livings, pursuant to the Act of Parliament introduced by the Archbishop of Canterbury for that purpose ; and that to the University set on foot by the Dean and Chapter of Durham, he was a contributor of at least double that sum for several successive years. Yet, in all probability, his private munificence was fully, or more than, equal to the examples which met the public eye. It was his practice to send annual gifts, such as to the poor of his first small Benefice, upon which, during his incumbency, he had expended in building much more than he had received. He would also, together with his relief, recollect and ask concerning the objects of it, and occasionally accompany it with a kind message of remembrance; which denotes his generosity (though profuse) to have been far nobler than the mere prodigality of one scattering abroad what he knew not how to spend upon himself. At the same time, he frequently devised liberal things towards persons above the want of food and raiment, with a view to set them at ease from straitened circumstances, or to gratify, in an acceptable manner, what he conceived might be their reasonable wishes and desires. Thus did he sometimes obviate disappointment, in cases where he felt that public patronage might be expected of him, but could not conveniently be extended : thus did he enliven many a flagging spirit, and uphold and establish one and another, who must else have sunk beneath their condition in the world. With these habits, it was not to be supposed that he had accumulated much to dispose of by his Executors; and, accordingly, a report prevailed, about the time of his decease, that he had left nothing besides an inconsiderable lifeassurance. The fact, however, was, that he had taken care to make a sufficiently respectable provision for his Widowb, after the deduction of a few legacies, which, there is reason to believe, would have been more in number, had the fatal seizure been less sudden or disabling.
Bishop Van Mildert was of a middle height; his countenance was pale, but strongly expressive; and his frame light and spare. In his motions he was commonly quick and active, but of a remarkably erect gait, never undignified, and well able, when it behoved him, to assume a highly imposing step and mien. Though usually gentle and condescending in his manners to men of all conditions who approached him, he evidently maintained an habitual self-respect, and remembrance of what was due to his high station; preventing, or repelling with a proper severity, the approaches of unbecoming familiarity. In his diet he was remarkably temperate, or rather abstemious; to which must be attributed the fact, that, notwithstanding his mental labour, and a weakly constitution, he attained, and somewhat exceeded, the scriptural age of man. Scarcely at any time of his life, did he enjoy good, or comfortable health. In childhood, he was subject (as already said) to a weakness of the eyes, brought on, perhaps, by a severe attack of the small-pox. When he was grown up, an hereditary tendency to hæmorrhage of the lungs, or throat, repeatedly shewed itself, in a degree to excite considerable alarm. About the middle of his age, a fever overtook him, attended by a disorder of the system, which could never satisfactorily be remedied. And towards the close of his life, he had to experience the twofold affliction of suffering daily acute pain in his own person, and of seeing her who had many years been his best earthly stay and comfort, in an equally distressing, though a widely different state. Besides all this, his maladies were mostly of an irritable cast, and he seems to have inherited from his parents a highly sensitive constitution, of both mind and body. It is not, therefore, to be thought strange, if occasionally he manifested a spirit not incapable of being agitated, or excited. Still, however, he gave not way to unseemly emotions; and certainly nothing could exceed his placability even towards persons who had grievously resisted and offended him. In this, as in every other part of his character, he was evidently actuated by the spirit of the Gospel, which appears to have ruled, with a continually increasing influence, in his heart. By all that is before the public, his views of the Christian dispensation were not only learned and accurate, but, moreover, full, lucid, and spiritual. Yet if any would know what may be called his last confession, in a sermon preached only a month before his death occur the following emphatic passages : “A deep sense of our own unworthiness, " and a lively faith in God's mercies through Christ, “ are indispensable to the acceptance of our prayers.'
b Mrs. Van Mildert died at Harrogate, Dec. 19, 1837; and, having been removed to Durham, was interred in the same vault with the Bishop, on the 28th of that month.
“ The great principle of every one who has been
taught the truth as it is in Jesus, is this—that we “ are unable of ourselves to help ourselves; that “ « our sufficiency is of God;' that God was in Christ “ reconciling the world unto Himself;' and that He “ •so loved the world, that He gave his only-begot“ ten Son, that whosoever believeth in him should “ not perish, but have everlasting life. This is the “ foundation of our faith." There were also found in the writing-case on his library table, and elsewhere, other manuscripts of a strictly private character', which decidedly prove to his surviving relatives, that he remembered the duty of intercession, both for his
c Two specimens of these compositions may be here inserted; one, a Prayer written previously to the composition of his Charge for 1831 ; the other, a short Poem on his Birthday, 1833.
“ PRAYER “O God, the Fountain of all wisdom, without whose aid and “ blessing, vain are all our endeavours to promote Thy glory, “ or to set forth the knowledge of Thy truth; assist me, I