a serious version of his pleasantry with the Dutchman about finding his goods by calculating the age of the moon.
Many of the Irish Friends
had formed from hearsay the most extravagant misconceptions concerning the Friends called ‘Hicksites.’
They supposed them to be outright infidels, and that the grossest immoralities were tolerated among them; that they pointed loaded pistols at the ‘Orthodox’ brethren, and drove them out of their own meeting-houses by main force.
One of them expressed great surprise when Friend Hopper
informed him that they were in the constant habit of reading the Scriptures in their families, and maintained among themselves the same discipline that had always been used in the Society.
Sometimes when he attended Quaker
meetings during the early portion of his visit, the ministers preached at him, by cautioning young people to beware of the adversary, who was now going about like a cunning serpent, in which form he was far more dangerous, than when he assumed the appearance of a roaring lion.
But after a while, this tendency was rebuked by other preachers, who inculcated forbearance in judging others; reminding their hearers that the spirit of the Gospel always breathed peace and good will toward men. As for Isaac himself, he behaved with characteristic openness.
When a stranger, in Quaker
costume introduced himself,