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THERON. MUST now desire my Aspasio to inform me-Of whom that grand Affembly consisted, (which He mentioned in
the Clofe of our last Discourse) and songo where it was convened ? Asp. Can't you guess, Theron?-Was it in the Plains of Thessaly; when Xerxes drew together the Forces of more than half the known World, and appeared at the Head of all the Potentates of the East?--Was it in the Roman Forum; when the Senators were assembled in their Robes, and the Barbarians took them for a Synod of Gods ?-No; it was on the Mount of Transfiguration. Where the SON of the true GOD, the LORD of eternal Glory, shone forth in fome of his celestial and native Splendour ; with Garments white as the new-fallen Snows *, and a Countenance bright as
* Mark ix. 3. The Evangelift's Description.is, like the Scene, remarkably bright, and the Gradation of his Images, is almost as worthy of Obfervation, as the me. morable Fact. --The Garments, were white exceeding
.the meridian Sun. Where He conversed with two of his most distinguished Saints, just come down from the Regions of Bliss and Immortality: with Mofes the meek Deliverer of the Law, and with Elijah the refolute Restorer of its Honours. Where He was attended by three of his principal Ambassadors; who were to be the Reformers of Mankind, and the Lights of the World.
This, I think, is the most venerable and august Assembly, which the Annals of History have recorded.—And what was the Topic of Conversation, among these illustrious Personages ?- Not the Affairs of State, nor the Revolutions of Empire; not the curious Refinements of Literature, nor the wonderful Discoveries of Philosophy; but the ignominious and bloody Exit *, which the Divine JESUS was soon to make at Jerusalem.—This Circumstance, methinks, should recommend the Subject to our frequent Discourse; even though it was less eminent, for intrinsic Dignity, and comfortable Import.
Talking in this manner, they arrive at the Park. Which, the Moment You enter, fills the View with
its white-white as the Snow-whiter than any Fuller on Earth could make them—surpassing all the Works of Art, equaling the first and finelt Productions of Nature. Nay, so great was the Luftre, so sweetly yet so strongly reful. gent, that it glistered (zlevélo som forla) like the Lightening, and even dazzled the Sight.
* Does not this very delicately, yet very forcibly intimate, That the Sufferings and Death of CHRIST, were the principal End of the Mosaic Institutions, and the principal Subject of the Prophetic Teachings ? For, is it not natural to suppose, that Mofes and Elijah intended, when ministering on Earth, that very Thing, which their Conversation dwelt upon, when they descended from Heaven?
its bold, enlarged, and magnificent Sweep.--It was diversified with level and rising Ground. Here, scooped into mimic Amphitheatres; with the Deer pendent on the little Summit, or shooting down the easy Precipice. There, raised into gentle Hillocks ; some of which were canopied with a large, spreading, folitary Oak; others were tufted with a Clufter of tapering and verdant Elms. Two or three Cascades, gleaming from afar, as they poured along the flanting Rock, or the graffy Slope, gave a pleasing Variation to the Prospect. While they startled the timorous unexperienced Fawns, with their foam-, ing Current, and watery Roar.-Grandeur and Simplicity seemed to be the Genius of the Place. Every Thing breathed an Air of noble Negligence, and artless Majesty.
j In thie. Center of all, rose a curious, romantic, Mount. Its Form was exactly round. Somewhat like a Sugar-loaf, whose Cone is lopt off, a little below the Point.Not coeval with Nature, but the Work of human Industry. :: Thrown up, 'tis suppofed, in those perilous Times, when Britain was alarmed by foreign Invasions, or bled with intestine Wounds. It was covered, all around, with Elder-, Arubs. Whose Ranks, gradually rising, and spreading Shade above Shade, composed a kind of woody, Theatre. Through which were struck two or three Spiral Walks ; leading, by a gentle Ascent, and under embowering Verdure, to the Summit. At proa per Intervals, and on every Side of the Hill, were: formed little Arbours; with Apertures, cut through the Boughs, to admit a Prospect of the Country.-a. In one or other of these leafy Boxes, You command, at every Hour of the Day, either the enliven-. .. Voi, I.
ing Sun, or the refreshing Shade. All along the circling Avenues, and all around the beauteous Reffsz fprung Daffodils, Primroses, and Violets : which mingling with Hyacinths and Cowships, composed many a charming Piece of natural Mosaic , ;
How, agreeable, as they climb and wind thema felves round the Hill, to reflect on the happy Changex which has now taken place !--Where steely Hele mets gleamed, or. brazen Shields clalaed, the Geldri finches twitter their Loves, and display their painted Plames. The Dens of Rapine, or the horrid Haunts. of Bloodshed, are become the Retreats of calma Cons templation, and friendly. Converse. In yonder leweria Spaces, where the armed Troops were wont ta paz trol; from whence they made Excursions, to ravage the Villages, or terrify the Swains; the Fallezu-deer: trip lightly, or the full-headed Stags ftand at bay.
From a small Eminence, but at a. confiderable Distance, gashed a couple of Springs. Which, ramos bling through a Grove, loft one another in the shadya Labyrinth Emerging, at length, from the Gloom, they approached nearer and nearer, and fell into Embraces at the Foot of this Hilt. They rolled, in amicable Conjunction, along the pebbly. Chan nel, which incircles its Balis; and added their forms ber Melod, to the sprightly-Warbling of the Birds.r. Flowing off in one commoní Stream, they formed the fine Pieces of Water, which beautified the Park. From thence, they stole into the Meadow, andis widened into a River. Therey enamoured: as it were with each other, they glide by wealthy Towns, and-sweep through flowery Vales; regardless of the blooming Toys, which deck- the one, and of the noify Crowds, wiich throng the otheria
So, fàid Afpafio, may Theron and his Selina, pleasing and pleased with each other, pass through the bufy and the amusing Scenes of Life; neither captivated by the one, nor anxious for the other With such harmonious Agreement, and indissoluble Union, may they purfue the Course, marked out by Providence; their Happinefs increafing, and their Usefulness enlarging, as they draw nearer the Ocean of all Good. Then, párted by a gentle Stroke of Fate, like the Waters of fome ample Stream fevered by the Piers of an intervening Bridge, may they speedily reunite Reunite in confummate Blifs, and never be separated more!
Ther. I thank You, Afpafio, for youe affectionate Compliment. Nor can I with You, by way of Re. Furn, a greater Recompence, than the continual Exercise of such a benevolent Temper. For, to exercife Benevolence, is to enjoy the most refined and exalted Pleasuré ; fuch as makes the nearest Approaches to the Felicity of the eternal Mind; who, as the Scripture moft beautifully speaks, has Pleafure in the Profperity of his Servants. · But while We are feated on this Mount, our Si
of CHRIST:-*An Event, for which you have
honourable to the divine Attributes. .
Afp. I have reprefented it, as a Ransom for our Souls, and a Sverifice for our Sins. If You disapprove my Account, be pleased to favour me with your own. -For what Purpose, according to your Qpinion, did that ever-blessed PERSON die? . . . 2