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They have freely availed themselves of the labors of others, whenever they thought it would serve their purpose better, or as well, as original matter.
The extracts have not always been marked as quotations, because verbal alterations and omissions seemed necessary, but they have endeavored carefully to preserve the sense of their authors.
Earnestly do they desire that all may endeavour to regulate their conduct, and base their opinions on the religion of which our Divine Lord is the Author and Finisher.
Philadelphia, 5th mo, 1834,
Dear mother, said Lucy, as she entered the parlour one morning, thou promised to tell us why we are called Quakers, and what is the meaning of that word.
MOTHER. I did, and have only been waiting for a suitable time, when Edward, Anna, and thyself could sit down quietly with me; that we might converse, not only on that subject, but on some others relative to our religious society.
Lucy. Mother, is not this a suitable time as there is no school to-day.
Mo. If you are ready to recite your scripture lessons, we may, when that exercise is finished, spend the morning pleasantly and
profitably together in conversation : but before we take up the sacred volume, let us endeavour to have our minds gathered in silence before our great Creator, that we may be qualified in spirit to ask his blessing upon us through the day. Prayer, as Montgomery beautifully expresses it,
“ Is the burden of a sigh,
The falling of a tear;
When none but God is near," After a pause the children repeated their lessons—Isaiah lxvi. 1, 2. 6 Thus saith the Lord: the heaven is my throne, and the earth is my footstool : where is the house that ye build unto me? and where is the place of my rest ? for all those things hath mine hand made, and all those things have been, saith the Lord: but to this man will I look, even to him that is poor and of a contrite spirit, and who trembleth at my word.” After some appropriate observations, their mother said, The passage of scripture you have just recited, is a suitable introduction to our conversation. I think it was Lucy who ex
pressed the wish to know why she was called a Quaker.
Lu. Yes, mother, I want very much to know, because sometimes those who call us so, do it in ridicule, or reproach, and it hurts our feelings.
Mo. To reply, then, to this question, I will relate the circumstance which gave rise to the name of Quaker. In the year 1650, George Fox, with whose name you are all familiar, was imprisoned at Derby for preaching the Gospel. It was perhaps at his first examination, that he was exhorting justice Bennett and some other persons who were in company, to tremble at the word of the Lord; on which the justice contemptuously called the friends of George Fox Quakers, by which name they have from that time been distinguished.
EDWARD. But we are called Friends, as well as Quakers, are we not, mother? who gave us that name? I like it a great deal better; but I think I shall not be ashamed to be called a Quaker, now that I know it means trembling before God.
Mo. That is what we should all do, for the prophet Isaiah, in the fifth verse of the same chapter you are learning, says: “Hear the word of the Lord, ye that tremble at his word; your brethren that hated you, that cast you out for my name's sake, said, Let the Lord be glorified: but he shall appear to your joy, and they shall be ashamed.”
Anna. Please, dear mother, now to go on with the account of our society.
MOTHER. I shall, and I wish to encourage you to ask questions with freedom; because, by the unreserved expression of our sentiments, love and confidence are strengthened. The religious society of which we are members, are called Quakers by the world, but we are known to each other by the name of Friends; a beautiful appellation, and characteristic of the relation which man under the Christian dispensation, ought uniformly to bear to man. The founder of the society was George Fox; he was born at Drayton in Leicestershire, England, in 1624, and was blessed with parents who were religiously concerned to train him up in the