On the last day, he repeated to me, what he had previously said to others, that he sometimes seemed to hear voices singing, ‘We have come to take thee home.’
Once, when no one else happened to be near him, he said to me in a low, confidential tone, ‘Maria, is there anything peculiar in this room?’
I replied, ‘No.
Why do you ask that question?’
‘Because,’ said he, ‘you all look so beautiful; and the covering on the bed has such glorious colors, as I never saw. But perhaps I had better not have said anything about it.’
The natural world was transfigured to his dying senses; perhaps by an influx of light from the spiritual; and I suppose he thought I should understand it as a sign that the time of his departure drew nigh.
It was a scene to remind one of Jeremy Taylor
's eloquent words: ‘When a good man dies, one that hath lived innocently, then the joys break forth through the clouds of sickness, and the conscience stands upright, and confesses the glories of God: and owns so much integrity, that it can hope for pardon, and obtain it too. Then the sorrows of sickness do but untie the soul from its chain, and let it go forth, first into liberty, and then into glory.’
A few hours before he breathed his last, he rallied from a state of drowsiness, and asked for a box containing his private papers.
He wished to find one, which he thought ought to be destroyed, lest it should do some injury.
He put on his spectacles, and looked