« AnteriorContinuar »
What is the praise of man to me, that have one foot in the grave,
and am stepping into the land whence I shall not return? Therefore, I dare no more write in a fine style than wear a fine coat. But were it otherwise, had I time to spare, I should still write just as I do. I should purposely decline, what many admire, a highly ornamented style. I cannot admire French oratory: I despise it from my heart. Let those that please be in raptures at the pretty, elegant sentences of Massillon or Bourdaloue ; but give me the plain, nervous style of Dr. South, Dr Bates, or Mr. John Howe: and for elegance, show me any French writer who exceeds Dean Young or Mr. Seed. Let who will admire the French frippery; I am still for plain, sound English.
6. I think a preacher, or a writer of sermons, has lost his way, when he imitates any of the French orators; even the most famous of them; even Massillon or Bourdaloue. Only let his language be plain, proper, and clear, and it is enough. God himself has told us how to speak, both as to the matter and the manner : “If any man speak,” in the name of God, “ let him speak as the oracles of God;" and if he would imitate any part of these above the rest, let it be the First Epistle of St. John. This is the style, the most excellent style, for every gospel preacher. And let him aim at no more ornament than he finds in that sentence, which is the sum of the whole gospel, “We love him, because he first loved us."
London, Jan. 1, 1788
CONTENTS OF THE SECOND VOLUME.
viü, 29, 30