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[148] concerned. His teacher left him to himself mainly, and following the bent of his mind, even at that early period, he abandoned the exact sciences for the perusal of such controversial and metaphysical writings of the schoolmen as his master's library afforded. The smattering of Latin which he acquired only served in after years to deform his treatises with barbarous, ill-adapted, and erroneous citations. ‘As to myself,’ said he, in his letter written in old age to Anthony Wood, who had inquired whether he was an Oxonian graduate, ‘my faults are no disgrace to a university, for I was of none; I have but little but what I had out of books and inconsiderable help of country divines. Weakness and pain helped me to study how to die; that set me a-studying how to live; and that on studying the doctrine from which I must fetch my motives and comforts; beginning with necessities, I proceeded by degrees, and am now going to see that for which I have lived and studied.’

Of the first essays of the young theologian as a preacher of the Established Church, his early sufferings from that complication of diseases with which his whole life was tormented, of the still keener afflictions of a mind whose entire outlook upon life and nature was discolored and darkened by its disordered bodily medium, and of the struggles between his Puritan temperament and his reverence for Episcopal formulas, much might be profitably said, did the limits we have assigned ourselves admit. Nor can we do more than briefly allude to the religious doubts and difficulties which darkened and troubled his mind at an early period.

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