[p. 110] in her seventy-first year. Her death was sudden, after a few hours' illness, though she had been an invalid for the preceding twelve years. It took place at one o'clock on the morning of the Sabbath, and my father preached on both parts of the following day, pleading, in opposition to the remonstrances of some of his friends, that as his preparation for the pulpit was completed, he should be more able to command his feelings there than anywhere else. Few lives were ever less varied by outward events of a personal character than my father's, but he had within himself a perennial freshness of feeling which caused him always to be interested in his studies, in the stirring events of the time in which he lived, and the concerns of those around him. Books were his perpetual solace and delight. The hurried manner in which he received his literary education having allowed him no leisure for any thorough acquaintance with the Greek and Roman classics, they possessed all the charm of novelty for him in his more advanced age. In the latter years of his life he read the Greek historians, orators, and tragedians with the liveliest pleasure. As the hour immediately succeeding breakfast was always devoted by him to these studies, it was in his power, during a succession of years, to read all the most distinguished Greek and Roman authors—the whole of Plutarch's writings, and many of the volumes of Plato, while the histories of Herodotus and Thucydides received his delighted attention: and to these noble sources he was probably much indebted for the continued growth of his mind, as well as for the freshness and accuracy which were thought by many to distinguish his compositions. His habits of study differed from those of many clergymen. His preparation for the ensuing Sunday usually commenced early in the week, often on Monday, unless there were sick persons to be visited. His evenings were giving to general reading. He always wrote slowly and with fastidious care; but he never ceased
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