A Dream

Sometime about the Sixth Month 1760 I Dreamed that I went on some Business to a Neighbours House, and after having done the Business, the Master of the House Civilly invited me in, to see his Mother, and as I passed through a Passage which led into the Parlour, I heard in Voice as of one in great Agony and Distress,.  I stopped to Observe from whence it came, and Observed a Room on my Left Hand, the Door was shut, but a Declivity Underneath Sufficient to look into it, which as it Ascended two or three Steps, I easily did, and there saw a Woman upon the Floor, with all the Appearance of extreme Pain, on which I applied to the Master of the House and told him I thought there was a Person who very much wanted Assistance, he said, he hoped I would not be frightened, that it was a Noise they were often disturbed with, but had never seen any thing, for it was an Apparition which had troubled the House for a long time past — By this time we were got into the Parlour, where we were scarcely Seated before the appearance of a Woman Entered, she appeared to be about fifty, of a middle Size, Decently, but genteely Drest, and of an Agreeable Countenance.  I looked at her, and easily knew her to be the same Person I had before seen so much Disturbed, and without any Emotion of Fear or Surprise, I asked her the Cause of it, when she addressed herself to me, and Said “I have been Dead some Years, and when Living had the Person and Appearance you now see.  I was a Gentlewoman who lived in great Ease and Affluence, and was looked upon, by Myself and Acquaintance as Innocent and very Industrious, for I took great delight in Working, but it was chiefly on such things as had little use in them, Flourishing and Working Gause into Hoods, Cloaks, Handkerchiefs and Ruffles were my Chief Delight in which I spent almost all my Time, and now those very things which were then my greatest Pleasure are become my Punishment, and am now Doomed Eternally to Labour at it Incessantly with inexpressible Pain and Disgust” — She then sat down to show me the Manner of her Working, which appeared to me to be with great Labour and Vexation.  She also shewed me some of the Triffles in which she had Mispent her Time, and said there was one Circumstance which was very Grievous and Afflicting to her, which was, that her Sight grew dimmer and darker, and Yet the Same Labour was exacted from her, very often repeating that.  That which was on Earth her Chief Delight, was now become her grievous Tormentor. ~ There were many other Things passed in the House, which I do not now exactly recollect, but eh Above was too Strongly Impressed upon my Memory to be forgot ——




A Prayer of Francis Rawle

 O’ Thou awful, tremendous, Yet most merciful Being, O’ thou, whose high attributes are beyond the low Comprehensions of human Ideas, of whose boundless Power and Unsearchable Wisdom, we can in no wise conceive aright, Yet of whose great Mercy, and Infinite Loving kindness, unto us thy Poor Unworthy Creatures, we chiefly know, not only from the Accounts delivered down to us Since the Foundation of the Earth, but in a more sensible and convincing Manner, each of us for himself has manifestly felt and experienced, for which of us, O’ Lord’ is not unto thee under many and great Obligations, how many Deliverances hast thou not wrought for us, how many Blessings hast thou not showered down upon us, and who of all thy Creatures has been more eminently favoured than me, a poor, Unworthy Sinner, t’was thou that gave me light and life, thou didst sustain me thro’ Infancy and Childhood, thou didst conduct me through many visible dangers, safely to Manhood, and confirmed my riper Years in Health and Strength.  Thy pure and holy Religion was instilled in my Infant Years, Thy Grace was not wanting to teach my Young and Unexperienced Heart, I have felt, O Lord’ yea, many times felt with rapture, the Sweet influence of Thy Holy Spirit, Nay, I have been drawn towards Thee, as it were, by the Strong cords of Thy Love, and have with extacy blest that Divine Goodness, which has Condescended to enable me to offer up living Sacrifices unto the most High, and bowed me down under a strong Sense of my Unworthiness, by Ingratitude, unto thee.  Thou best of Fathers, Friends, and Benefactors, And unto thee O’ great Jehovah, has my Soul been enabled to offer up living Praises, Praises which I believe, have been acceptable in thy Holy Sight, and have been Joined with those of Saints and Angels and good Men made Perfect, and helped to Constitute the Universal Chorus, which continually ascends unto the Throne of the Majesty of Heaven, and which is itself the Author and Begetter of it, Yet am I a poor weak, backsliding Creature, How do I forget thee Days without Number, How does the World, and the Surfeiting Cares thereof, intervene between thy free Spirit and me.  How are my Affections alienated from Thee, and how, alas, do I lose ground daily, in vain do I endeavour to approach the never failing Fountain of Good, In vain do I lift up my Hands, and Voice towards thee, my Lips approach Thee, but, my Heart, where art thou, In vain do I endeavour to recollect, and imprint in my Mind, with a grateful Sense of the many Blessings and Favours that thy Unwearied Liberality has heaped upon me —— In vain do I endeavour to Meditate on those sweet Soul, Saving Seasons, I have heretofore happily Experienced. — Alas! O, Lord, tis now in Vain, unless Thou art pleased to help me —— Long Experience has taught me it is in vain! — Now, O Father, let me once more prefer an humble Prayer to thee, a Prayer which is of thine own begetting.  I earnestly Supplicate, and then, I know Thou will bless it. — Breathe, I Pray Thee, on these dry Bones, and cause them to live.  Bless me with the choicest of thy Blessings, Thy Spiritual Blessings give thou unto me; enable me to love thee above all things, enable me to fear thee; to hold thee in awful Reverence —— to bow down before thee in fear and trembling — to Supplicate thy Mercy and depricate thy Wrath — O. thou never failing Source and Fountain of boundless Good!  Be pleased to deliver me from the bondage of this perishing World. — free me from this thick Clay wherewith I am laden, and enable me to run the race of Immortal Glory and Unceasing Happiness. — Be thou unto me, O Father’, the most Supreme Object of my Attention, and be the Life of my Blessed Saviour Jesus Christ, my beloved Pattern to go by and direct my Paths aright, who, though I can in no wise equal, yet may I unweariedly endeavour to imitate.  Enable me, I pray thee, to Discharge my Christian Duty aright!  May I be a Spiritual, as well as Temporal Husband to the Wife of my Bosom, and the same Father to my tender Offspring, may, my Soul be concerned to bring them up in the Nurture and Admonition of the Lord, may I provide for their Immortal Spirits, as well as their Mortal Bodies, and may I watch over the dawn of Their Youth, to sow Therein the Seeds of Eternal Life —May I be a Father to the Fatherless, and a Husband to the Widow.  May the poor Bless thee, O’ Lord in me, May I comfort the Distressed, and wipe away the Tears of him that Mourneth, May I know an increase in Grace and Growth in Godliness, and as I pass through the Vale of Life, and draw still nearer to the Confines of Eternity, May my Soul be more and more fitted for the Awful Change, by a perfect Obedience unto thy Holy Will, and a total Resignation unto thy all wise Dispensations, That whenever the Period of temporal Enjoyments shall come upon me, Whether at Midnight, at Cock crow, or dawning of the Day — Whether, when in the primed of Health and Strength, or when my Head is covered with grey Hairs, I may be ready to answer the Solemn Call, trusting, O’ Lord in thy Mercies, and clasping in my Arms the Merits of my Blessed Saviour, which I know to be more than a Sufficient Atonement for my Imperfections. — And O’ Father when my Soul shivers on the Verge of Eternity whether it parts from the old Companion, the Body, with Ease, or in Agony, may The sure and certain Consciousness of a happy Change, enable me to bear the Terrors of that Tremendous Hour with calmness and Patience, for the sake of the exceeding Weight of Glory that waiteth for it, and the near Prospect of its being speedily received into the Delightful Mansions of its Heavenly Fathers Kingdom, where in the full Fruition of the Light of that Countenance, which beams forth perfect Happiness, cloathed with Immortal Purity, and Immortal Love, it shall become the Companion of Saints, and Angels, and Eternally sing forth living Praises unto him who is Worthy for Evermore —  Amen ————




Copy of a Letter from Samuel Fothergill to Mary Yarnall ——   Warrington 3d month 9th 1758

Dear Friend

Mary Yarnall

                        I have not forgot the Relief I at Times met with in your Country by Friends Mitigating the Inevitable Pain of Absence by giving my Wife some account of me when I might be prevented doing it, by such Engagements as Necessarily attend a Sincere Endeavour to Discharge our Duty in the Service of our Worthy Lord and master, Experience hath taught me Sympathy, and the Sincere Regard I have for thy Husband, Thyself, and the Children, demands a Testimony of it on the present Occasion, I was by a slight Indisposition prevented from Accompanying him to the Quarterly Meeting at Cheshire to which he set out this Morning, attended by my Wife and Samuel Emlen, and expect him here again in a few days, he is bravely in health and inwardly and Outwardly well, being preserved in that happy Stability which is in the middle of the Path of true Judgement, His Service is truly Acceptable to the living, and by the haste he is allow’d to make by his Wise and Gracious Master may be expected to be clear sooner than many others who have come from your Land ——  The tender Connections of Nature confirmed by the yet stronger Current of Divine Grace which establish Your Union, will doubtless often suggest a secret Anxious wish for his speedy return home to his beloved Relatives, but whilst mutual Affection prompts the Wish for his Return, may a suitable deference ever be paid to that direction which is wise, in whose Sacred Allotment the Joyous Events of human Life are Sanctified and the Adverse-render’d sweet — I early felt with thee and for thee when he was permitted to fall into the hands of Unreasonable Men, but He whom thy dear Husband Served, set bounds to their Wrath and Vouchsafed a Speedy Deliverance, and why may we not suppose the Lord of the Harvest perfectly Wise in now and then lighting a Candle in those Lands where darkness prevails, it is Doubtless Consistent, with his Sovereignty and Goodness, who would bless the utmost Borders of his ample Empire, and make the place of his Feet Glorious.  He who cares for the Sparrows, and hath Numbered the very Hairs of our Head, Mercifully presides among his People, divides the Spoil to those who in his Strength go out to War, and Allots a Share to such who remain at home in their Duty, filling up their Places, I am persuaded beyond a doubt That the Merciful Father cares for what we leave behind us, and Blesses with Prosperity.  Often and always with Patience as we look to him, If Outward Affairs are not beneath his Providential Notice, how much more those Which stand in a Nearer Relation those Pledges of Mutual Love.  The Example and tender Advice of Absent Parents may by their Absence be in Measure Vacated, Yet this deficiency is made up by the Interposition of the ever present and all sufficient Father. When I Remember, as at this Time it is fresh with me, That in my Honourable Fathers Absence, and being in your Land, the humbling Converting Hand effectually prevailed with me to embrace his Visitation —— My Heart is Anxious that you the beloved Offspring of the Lords Servant, may be enriched with the same Blessing, and give up your Names to be inserted in the Roll of the Lords Servants, which is the Lambs Book of Life, for this his Prayers ascend, who having proved the Service of the Most High, found it to be freedom and perfect Liberty. — May a holy Union of Spirit Unite the whole together, that you may Availably follow after the Things which makes for true Peace, and Innocent Hands be put up to the Almighty for a Beloved Fathers return to you in Safety, and with Sheaves in his Bosom, with a Heart replenished with Unfeigned Love — I salute thee Dear Friend and all the Children capable of receiving it — And am Thy very Affectionate Friend

                                                        Samuel Fothergill




Anecdote of Admiral Tyrrel 

Samuel Fothergill, when at Scarborough, observed Admiral Tyrrel attended several Meetings of the People called Quakers in that Place, and took particular Notice of the Solemnity and Reverence of this Behaviour during the Meetings, especially in the time of Silence. ~ One Morning, after this, the Admiral came up to Samuel, in the public Room, before many of the Nobility, saying, Mr Fothergill, I have a very high Opinion of your Peoples Principles and Practices.  Especially the inwardness and Spirituality of your Silent Worship”  Samuel replied “Admiral I think such a Testimony rather extraordinary from thee as a Man of War, concerning us and our Principles which are for Peace and against all Fighting“  The Admiral replied, Sir, I am of your Principles in that particular and fully believe the time will come, when Nation shall not lift up Sword against Nation, Neither learn War any more; but as every Dispensation of Unerring Wisdom must have a Beginning, so, that has had amongst you, but has not reached us yet, and as to the Divine Intelligence with which you hold an Union and Communion I know by Experience that it is Attainable in this Age, one Instance of which occurs to me, when I had the Honour of Commanding three of his Majesty’s Ships of War, as Commodore, some Time before The last Peace was Concluded. — Account was brought that five large French Men of War were bearing down towards us, all superior to ours in Men and Guns, a Council of War was called, and whilst they sat, I retired alone into my Cabin, and after getting into perfect Silence, I heard in the Secret of my Mind, a Language, as Intelligible to my Understanding as ever Words were to my Outward Senses, “Go, fight the French Fleet, for I have delivered them into Thine Hand”  I arose reverently thankful for this Gracious Intimation, and went to the Council, letting them know that we would fight the French, and that I was sure of Victory; all was made ready and we engaged.~ The Event proved the Certainty of Divine Intimations, we having gained a compleat Victory, as is set forth in the History of that War ~~~~~~~~



Copy of a Letter from Saml Neale to WB

My dearly beloved Friend

And Companion

                                I have for several Days past felt Thee sweetly in Spirit, wherein thou hast been brought fresh to my view, and a fresh fellowship quickened, in which am made willing to Communicate to thee my Solitary Situation, for now Thou art in an Instrumental Sense one of the nearest to me in Relationship in the Truth in this World of Conflict, and on this Theatre of Probation and Warfare — After my return last Summer from my Visit to Friends in some parts of England and Scotland, at our National Meeting in Dublin, I again met my dearly beloved & United Friend Mary Peasely, with whom my Spirit as formerly was again United in the Strongest Union, and inasmuch as I had long since formed Expectations that at her return our Master might please to admit of our being still closer United if in his Counsel and Wisdom, otherwise strongly desired he might cause an entire Separation of thought about it and draw a Veil over such Apprehensions, Extinguishing Them by his own Immutable Decree — These were my repeated requests in secret, when long absent and far separated from that excellent Woman, but finding a perfect freedom to lay it before a select Number of our Friends the most judicious and deep of any in our poor Nation.  They encouraged the procedure which joined with my own Sentiments and those of many others not immediately consulted encouraged My presenting what I for several Years patiently waited for, and indeed remarkable were my Visits to her, may a deep impression thereof ever remain on my Mind.  Heaven was pleased to favour, and the Dew thereof often distilled upon our Spirits, Many Excellent Opportunities we had in the Family and our Union and Fellowship increased, we presented our Marriage in due course, which was a remarkable presentation to me, and a renewed confirmation that I acted in the Counsel of my Unerring Guide — to be brief we were Married and at our Marriage many of our good Friends attended of the Neighbouring Meetings, so as to be well pleased and thankful they were there (I write it in Their own expressions) in the Evening we had a solid Opportunity in which my dearest was concerned (see my Testimony) in a Letter to one of her Friends (who was absent thro domestic obstructions) two days after our Marriage she writes this “I once thought our intimacy would hardly have Admitted of so great a coolness as to be absent when so near me, on such an occasion as has lately happened, where Jesus and his Disciples were bidden and both were pleased to honour with their Company, and thine would have been acceptable for my own sake and thine.”  This is her own Testimony of her Engagement, which I am concerned to transmit least any should Misrepresent her sudden Change, Thro’ her entering into that State, as various are the Constrictions of Men on the Dispensations of Providence.  It’s true a trial more severe has attended few, nothing could be more compleatly happy in a State of Mutability in my Sense, if intire contentment gives it, but it was quickly marr’d, and I was let to see renewedly that the greater our Happiness is in this Life, in the Enjoyment of the Creatures Though them even formed in the Image of the Allwise Creator, and well refined, pain, Anxiety, and Disappointment attends in a State of Nature which must and ought to be Resigned & Passive to every distribution and allotment of the Divine Will, if we attain that State, which is our duty, but indeed perfection has operated nobly, or at least the principle that leads to it when we can in reality and truth without a whispering thought of Murmuring say, Thy Will be done, and yet its our Business to come here, our Lord having taught it to his Disciples and now having given This Circumstantial account of this trying event, may add I am brought to that State of Mind, I have not a wish in my heart to have her otherwise than she is, in a Glorified State, for I believe she has an exalted Mansion.  May it be my Lot to live in such deep Communion as she did with that Spirit which directs aright and teaches to make right distinctions between things & things, to leave all Shadows for the endearing Substance, to stand loose to Terrestial prospects & Enjoyments, that so an Eternal Inheritance may be my portion with those who are already removed out of those mortal Mansions & Tabernacles of Clay, this is now my desire & fervent Travail, for indeed I think I may say in Truth, I count all things but Dross & Dirt in Comparison of it. — I look sometimes towards your Land with a sweetness upon my Spirit, better to be felt than express’d, but whether it may even be any thing else but a look, I cannot say.  May the Lord of my life nourish his own Royal Seed therein, and bring forward every Quickened Birth by his own pure Power & Breath. — And now dearly beloved Friend shall draw towards a Conclusion with desires that thou may look towards my situation and Address that Sacred Throne when Abilitated, for my furtherance, Stability & Rectitude, in the Unchangable Truth while in the Church Militant, that when Those perishable & fleeting Moments are over, that the Body has to do its Work in.  The Spirit may ascend in Purity to Join those already Glorified & to sit down with those of Abraham, Isaac, & Jacob, in the Heavenly Kingdom, with the Redeemed Host that Celebrates in ceaseless Hymns & Songs of Praise, the Glory & Majesty of our God & King, Amen — My very dear Love to whom thou may shew the enclosed Testimonies, and I make no doubt but the hearing of the removal of my Beloved Companion will be an Afflicting circumstance to many — May it prove an Alarm to prepare all for their final change, and Quicken to fresh diligence, that nothing may be committed or Omitted to frustrate the Sentence of Well done, & Admittance into the Blest abodes of Light, Life, & Immortality, which that we may have a portion in at the due and Appointed Time, is the desire that now breathes in my Heart.  In which I take leave, and am thy Affectionate and nearly United Friend in the most enduring Relationship

                                                Samuel Neale ——


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