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[178] ‘I wish,’ he says, ‘all over-sharp passages were expunged from my writings, and I ask forgiveness of God and man.’ He tells us that mankind appear more equal to him; the good are not so good as he once thought, nor the bad so evil; and that in all there is more for grace to make advantage of, and more to testify for God and holiness, than he once believed. ‘I less admire,’ he continues, ‘gifts of utterance, and the bare profession of religion, than I once did, and have now much more charity for those who, by want of gifts, do make an obscurer profession.’

He laments the effects of his constitutional irritability and impatience upon his social intercourse and his domestic relations, and that his bodily infirmities did not allow him a free expression of the tenderness and love of his heart. Who does not feel the pathos and inconsolable regret which dictated the following paragraph?

‘When God forgiveth me, I cannot forgive myself, especially for my rash words and deeds by which I have seemed injurious and less tender and kind than I should have been to my near and dear relations, whose love abundantly obliged me. When such are dead, though we never differed in point of interest or any other matter, every sour or cross or provoking word which I gave them maketh me almost irreconcilable to myself, and tells me how repentance brought some of old to pray to the dead whom they had wronged to forgive them, in the hurry of their passion.’

His pride as a logician and skilful disputant abated in the latter and better portion of his life:

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