Though it was only as a poet that Anne Bradstreet was known to her
own time, her real strength was in prose, and the "Meditations,
Divine and Morall," written at the request of her second son, the
Rev. Simon Bradstreet, to whom she dedicated them, March 20, 1664,
show that life had taught her much, and in the ripened thought and
shrewd observation of men and manners are the best testimony to
her real ability. For the reader of to-day they are of incomparably
more interest than anything to be found in the poems. There
is often the most condensed and telling expression; a swift
turn that shows what power of description lay under all the
fantastic turns of the style Du Bartas had created for her. That
he underrated them was natural. The poems had brought her honor in
the old home and the new. The meditations involved no anxious
laboring after a rhyme, no straining a metaphor till it cracked.
They were natural thought naturally expressed and therefore
worthless for any literary purpose, and as she wrote, the wail of
the Preacher repeated itself, and she smiled faintly as the words
grew under her pen: "There is no new thing under the sun, there is
nothing that can be sayd or done, but either that or something
like it hath been done and sayd before."
Many of the paragraphs written in pain and weakness show how
keenly she had watched the course of events, and what power of
characterization she had to use, three of them especially holding
the quiet sarcasm in which she occasionally indulged, though
always with a tacit apology for the possession of such a quality.
"Dimne eyes are the concomitants of old age; and short-sightednes
in those that are eyes of a Republique, foretells a declineing
"Authority without wisdome, is like a heavy axe without an edge,
fitter to bruise than polish."
"Ambitious men are like hops that never rest climbing so long as
they have anything to stay upon; but take away their props, and
they are of all, the most dejected."
The perpetual dissensions, religious and political, which
threatened at times the absolute destruction of the Colony, were
all familiar to her, and she draws upon them for illustrations of
many points, others being afforded by her own experience with the
eight children to whom she proved so devoted and tender a mother.
Like other mothers, before and since, their differences in
temperament and conduct, seem to have been a perpetual surprise,
but that she had tact enough to meet each on his or her own
ground, or gently draw them toward hers, seems evident at every
point. That they loved her tenderly is equally evident, the diary
of her second son mentioning her always as "my dear and honored
mother," and all of them, though separated by early marriages for
most of them, returning as often as practicable to the old roof,
under which Thanksgiving Day had taken on the character it has
held from that clay to this. The small blank-book which held these
"Meditations" was copied carefully by Simon Bradstreet, and there
is little doubt that each of the children did the same,
considering it as much theirs as the brother's for whom it was
originally intended. Whatever Anne Bradstreet did, she had her
children always in view, and still another blank-book partially
filled with religious reflections, and found among her papers
after death, was dedicated, "To my dear children." The father
probably kept the originals, but her words were too highly valued,
not to have been eagerly desired by all. A special word to her son
opens the series of "Meditations."
FOR MY DEARE SONNE SIMON BRADSTREET.
Parents perpetuate their lines in their posterity, and their
maners in their imitation. Children do naturally rather follow the
failings than the virtues of their predecessors, but I am
persuaded better things of you. You once desired me to leave
something for you in writing that you might look upon when you
should see me no more. I could think of nothing more fit for you,
nor of more ease to my selfe, than these short meditations
following. Such as they are I bequeath to you: small legacys are
accepted by true friends, much more by dutiful children. I have
avoyded incroaching upon others conceptions, because I would leave
you nothing but myne owne, though in value they fall short of all
in this kinde, yet I presume they will be better priz'd by you for
the Author's sake. The Lord blesse you with grace heer, and crown
you with glory heerafter, that I may meet you with rejoyceing at
that great day of appearing, which is the continuall prayer of
Your affectionate mother,
March 20, 1664.
MEDITATIONS, DIVINE AND MORALL.
There is no object that we see; no action that we doe; no good
that we injoy; no evill that we feele or feare, but we may make
some spiritu(a)ll, advantage of all: and he that makes such
improvement is wise as well as pious.
Many can speak well, but few can do well. We are better Scholars
in the Theory then the practique part, but he is a true Christian
that is a proficient in both.
Youth is the time of getting, middle age of improving, and old age
of spending; a negligent youth is usually attended by an ignorant
middle age, and both by an empty old age. He that hath nothing to
feed on but vanity and lyes must needs lye down in the Bed of
A ship that beares much saile, and little or no ballast, is easily
overset; and that man, whose head hath great abilities, and his
heart little or no grace, is in danger of foundering.
It is reported of the peakcock that, prideing himself in his gay
feathers, he ruffles them up; but, spying his black feet, he soon
lets fall his plumes, so he that glorys in his gifts and adornings
should look upon his Corruptions, and that will damp his high
The finest bread hath the least bran; the purest hony, the least
wax; and the sincerest Christian, the least self love.
The hireling that labors all the day, comforts himself that when
night comes he shall both take his rest and receive his reward;
the painfull Christian that hath wrought hard in God's vineyard,
and hath born the heat and drought of the day, when he perceives
his sun apace to decline, and the shadows of his evening to be
stretched out, lifts up his head with joy, knowing his refreshing
is at hand.
Downny beds make drosey persons, but hard lodging keeps the eyes
open. A prosperous state makes a secure Christian, but adversity
makes him Consider.
Sweet words are like hony, a little may refresh, but too much
gluts the stomach.
Diverse children have their different natures; some are like flesh
which nothing but salt will keep from putrefaction; some again
like tender fruits that are best preserved with sugar: those
parents are wise that can fit their nurture according to their
That town which thousands of enemys without hath not been able to
take, hath been delivered up by one traytor within; and that man,
which all the temptations of Sathan without could not hurt, hath
been foild by one lust within.
Authority without wisdome is like a heavy axe without an edge,
fitter to bruise than polish.
The reason why Christians are so both to exchange this world for a
better, is because they have more sence than faith: they se what
they injoy, they do but hope for that which is to come.
If we had no winter, the spring would not be so pleasant; if we
did not sometimes tast of adversity, prosperity would not be so
A low man can goe upright under that door wher a taller is glad to
stoop; so a man of weak faith, and mean abilities may undergo a
crosse more patiently than he that excells him, both in gifts and
That house which is not often swept, makes the cleanly inhabitant
soone loath it, and that heart which is not continually purifieing
itself, is no fit temple for the spirit of God to dwell in.
Few men are so humble as not to be proud of their abilitys; and
nothing will abase them more than this--What hast thou, but what
thou hast received? Come, give an account of thy stewardship.
He that will undertake to climb up a steep mountain with a great
burden on his back, will finde it a wearysome, if not an
impossible task; so he that thinks to mount to heaven clog'd with
the Cares and riches of this Life, 'tis no wonder if he faint by
Corne, till it has passed through the Mill and been ground to
powder, is not fit for bread. God so deales with his servants: he
grindes them with grief and pain till they turn to dust, and then
are they fit manchet for his Mansion.
God hath sutable comforts and supports for his children according
to their severall conditions if he will make his face to shine
upon them: he then makes them lye down in green pastures, and
leads them beside the still waters: if they stick in deepe mire
and clay, and all his waves and billows goe over their heads, He
then leads them to the Rock which is higher than they.
He that walks among briars and thorns will be very carefull where
he sets his foot. And he that passes through the wilderness of
this world, had need ponder all his steps.
Want of prudence, as well as piety, hath brought men into great
inconveniencys; but he that is well stored with both, seldom is so
The skillfull fisher hath his severall baits for severall fish,
but there is a hooke under all; Satan, that great Angler, hath his
sundry bait for sundry tempers of men, which they all catch
gredily at, but few perceives the hook till it be too late.
There is no new thing under the sun, there is nothing that can be
sayd or done, but either that or something like it hath been both
done and sayd before.
XXV. An akeing head requires a soft pillow; and a drooping heart a
A sore finger may disquiet the whole body, but an ulcer within
destroys it: so an enemy without may disturb a Commonwealth, but
dissentions within overthrow it.
It is a pleasant thing to behold the light, but sore eyes are not
able to look upon it; the pure in heart shall see God, but the
defiled in conscience shall rather choose to be buried under rocks
and mountains then to behold the presence of the Lamb.
Wisedome with an inheritance is good, but wisedome without an
inheritance is better then an inheritance without wisedome.
Lightening doth generally preceed thunder, and stormes, raine; and
stroaks do not often fall till after threat'ning.
Yellow leaves argue the want of Sap, and gray haires want of
moisture; so dry and saplesse performances are symptoms of little
Iron till it be thoroughly heat is uncapable to be wrought; so God
sees good to cast some men into the furnace of affliction, and
then beats them on his anvile into what frame he pleases.
Ambitious men are like hops that never rest climbing soe long as
they have anything to stay upon; but take away their props and
they are, of all, the most dejected.
Much Labour wearys the body, and many thoughts oppresse the minde:
man aimes at profit by the one, and content in the other; but
often misses of both, and findes nothing but vanity and vexation
Dimne eyes are the concomitants of old age; and short-sightednes,
in those that are eyes of a Republique, foretells a declineing
We read in Scripture of three sorts of Arrows--the arrow of an
enemy, the arrow of pestilence, and the arrow of a slanderous
tongue; the two first kill the body, the last the good name; the
two former leave a man when he is once dead, but the last mangles
him in his grave.
Sore labourers have hard hands, and old sinners have brawnie
Wickednes comes to its height by degrees. He that dares say of a
lesse sin, is it not a little one? will ere long say of a greater,
Tush, God regards it not!
Some Children are hardly weaned, although the breast be rub'd with
wormwood or mustard, they will either wipe it off, or else suck
down sweet and bitter together; so is it with some Christians, let
God embitter all the sweets of this life, that so they might feed
upon more substantiall food, yet they are so childishly sottish
that they are still huging and sucking these empty brests, that
God is forced to hedg up their way with thornes, or lay affliction
on their loynes, that so they might shake hands with the world
before it bid them farewell
A Prudent mother will not clothe her little childe with a long and
cumbersome garment; she easily forsees what events it is like to
produce, at the best but falls and bruises, or perhaps somewhat
worse, much more will the alwise God proportion his dispensations
according to the Stature and Strength of the person he bestows
them on. Larg indowments of honor, wealth, or a helthfull body
would quite overthrow some weak Christian, therefore God cuts
their garments short, to keep them in such trim that they might
run the wayes of his Commandment.
The spring is a lively emblem of the resurrection. After a long
winter we se the leavlesse trees and dry stocks (at the approach
of the sun) to resume their former vigor and beauty in a more
ample manner then what they lost in the Autumn; so shall it be
at that great day after a long vacation, when the Sun of
righteousness shall appear, those dry bones shall arise in far
more glory then that which they lost at their creation, and in
this transcends the spring, that their leafe shall never faile,
nor their sap decline.
A Wise father will not lay a burden on a child of seven yeares
old, which he knows is enough for one of twice his strength, much
less will our heavenly father (who knows our mould) lay such
afflictions upon his weak children as would crush them to the
dust, but according to the strength he will proportion the load,
as God hath his little children so he hath his strong men, such as
are come to a full stature in Christ; and many times he imposes
waighty burdens on their shoulders, and yet they go upright under
them, but it matters not whether the load be more or less if God
afford his help.
I have seen an end of all perfection (sayd the royall prophet);
but he never sayd, I have seen an end of all sinning: what he did
say, may be easily sayd by many; but what he did not say, cannot
truly be uttered by any.
Fire hath its force abated by water, not by wind; and anger must
be alayed by cold words, and not by blustering threats.
A sharp appetite and a thorough concoction, is a signe of an
healthfull body; so a quick reception, and a deliberate
cogitation, argues a sound mind.
We often se stones hang with drops, not from any innate moisture,
but from a thick ayer about them; so may we sometime se marble-
hearted sinners seem full of contrition; but it is not from any
dew of grace within, but from some black Clouds that impends them,
which produces these sweating effects.
The words of the wise, sath Solomon, are as nailes and as goads
both used for contrary ends--the one holds fast, the other puts
forward; such should be the precepts of the wise masters of
assemblys to their hearers, not only to bid them hold fast the
form of sound Doctrin, but also, so to run that they might obtain.
A shadow in the parching sun, and a shelter in the blustering
storme, are of all seasons the most welcome; so a faithfull friend
in time of adversity, is of all other most comfortable.
There is nothing admits of more admiration, then God's various
dispensation of his gifts among the sons of men, betwixt whom he
hath put so vast a disproportion that they scarcely seem made of
the same lump, or sprung out of the loynes of one Adam; some set
in the highest dignity that mortality is capable of; and some
again so base, that they are viler then the earth; some so wise
and learned, that they seem like Angells among men; and some again
so ignorant and Sotish, that they are more like beasts then men:
some pious saints; some incarnate Devils; some exceeding
beautyfull; and some extreamly deformed; some so strong and
healthfull that their bones are full of marrow; and their breasts
of milk; and some again so weak and feeble, that, while they live,
they are accounted among the dead--and no other reason can be
given of all this, but so it pleased him, whose will is the
perfect rule of righteousness.
The treasures of this world may well be compared to huskes, for
they have no kernell in them, and they that feed upon them, may
soon stuffe their throats, but cannot fill their bellys; they may
be choaked by them, but cannot be satisfied with them.
Sometimes the sun is only shadowed by a cloud that wee cannot se
his luster, although we may walk by his light, but when he is set
we are in darkness till he arise again; so God doth sometime vaile
his face but for a moment, that we cannot behold the light of his
Countenance as at some other time, yet he affords so much light as
may direct our way, that we may go forward to the Citty of
habitation, but when he seems to set and be quite gone out of
sight, then must we needs walk in darkness and se no light, yet
then must we trust in the Lord, and stay upon our God, and when
the morning (which is the appointed time) is come, the Sun of
righteousness will arise with healing in his wings.
The eyes and the eares are the inlets or doores of the soule,
through which innumerable objects enter, yet is not that spacious
roome filled, neither doth it ever say it is enough, but like the
daughters of the horsleach, crys, give, give! and which is most
strang, the more it receives, the more empty it finds itself, and
sees an impossibility, ever to be filled, but by Him in whom all
Had not the wisest of men taught us this lesson, that all is
vanity and vexation of spirit, yet our owne experience would soon
have speld it out; for what do we obtain of all these things, but
it is with labour and vexation? When we injoy them it is with
vanity and vexation; and, if we loose them, then they are lesse
then vanity and more then vexation.: so that we have good cause
often to repeat that sentence, vanity of vanityes, vanity of
vanityes, all is vanity.
He that is to saile into a farre country, although the ship,
cabbin and provision, be all convenient and comfortable for him,
yet he hath no desire to make that his place of residence, but
longs to put in at that port where his bussines lyes; a Christian
is sailing through this world unto his heavenly country, and heere
he hath many conveniences and comforts; but he must beware of
desire(ing) to make this the place of his abode, lest he meet with
such tossings that may cause him to long for shore before he sees
land. We must, therefore, be beer as strangers and pilgrims, that
we may plainly declare that we seek a citty above, and wait all
the dayes of our appointed time till our chang shall come.
He that never felt what it was to be sick or wounded, doth not
much care for the company of the physitian or chirurgian; but if
he perceive a malady that threatens him with death, he will gladly
entertaine him, whom he slighted before: so he that never felt the
sicknes of sin, nor the wounds of a guilty conscience, cares not
how far he keeps from him that hath skill to cure it; but when he
findes his diseases to disrest him, and that he must needs perish
if he have no remedy, will unfeignedly bid him welcome that brings
a plaister for his sore, or a cordiall for his fainting.
We read of ten lepers that were cleansed, but of one that returned
thanks: we are more ready to receive mercys than we are to
acknowledg them: men can use great importunity when they are in
distresses, and show great ingratitude after their successes; but
he that ordereth his conversation aright, will glorifie him that
heard him in the day of his trouble.
The remembrances of former deliverances is a great support in
present distresses: he that delivered me, sath David, from the paw
of the Lion and the paw of the Beare, will deliver mee from this
uncircumcised Philistin; and he that hath delivered mee, saith
Paul, will deliver mee: God is the same yesterday, to-day, and
forever; we are the same that stand in need of him, to-day as well
as yesterday, and so shall forever.
Great receipts call for great returnes; the more that any man is
intrusted withall, the larger his accounts stands upon God's
score: it therefore behoves every man so to improve his talents,
that when his great Master shall call him to reckoning he may
receive his owne with advantage.
Sin and shame ever goe together. He that would be freed from the
last, must be sure to shun the company of the first.
God doth many times both reward and punish for the same action: as
we see in Jehu, he is rewarded with a kingdome to the fourth
generation, for takeing veangence on the house of Ahab; and yet a
little while (saith God), and I will avenge the blood of Jezevel
upon the house of Jehu: he was rewarded for the matter, and yet
punished for the manner, which should warn him, that doth any
speciall service for God, to fixe his eye on the command, and not
on his own ends, lest he meet with Jehu's reward, which will end
He that would be content with a mean condition, must not cast his
eye upon one that is in a far better estate than himself, but let
him look upon him that is lower than he is, and, if he see that
such a one beares poverty comfortably, it will help to quiet him;
but if that will not do, let him look on his owne unworthynes, and
that will make him say with Jacob, I am lesse then the least of
Corne is produced with much labour, (as the husbandman well
knowes), and some land askes much more paines then some other doth
to be brought into tilth, yet all must be ploughed and harrowed;
some children (like sowre land) are of so tough and morose a
dispo(si)tion, that the plough of correction must make long
furrows on their back, and the Harrow of discipline goe often over
them, before they bee fit soile to sow the seed of morality, much
lesse of grace in them. But when by prudent nurture they are
brought into a fit capacity, let the seed of good instruction and
exhortation be sown in the spring of their youth, and a plentiful!
crop may be expected in the harvest of their yeares.
As man is called the little world, so his heart may be cal'd the
little Commonwealth: his more fixed and resolved thoughts are like
to inhabitants, his slight and flitting thoughts are like
passengers that travell to and fro continually; here is also the
great Court of justice erected, which is always kept by conscience
who is both accuser, excuser, witness, and Judge, whom no bribes
can pervert, nor flattery cause to favour, but as he finds the
evidence, so he absolves or condemnes: yea, so Absolute is this
Court of Judicature, that there is no appeale from it--no, not to
the Court of heaven itself--for if our conscience condemn us, he,
also, who is greater than our conscience, will do it much more;
but he that would have boldness to go to the throne of grace to be
accepted there, must be sure to carry a certificate from the Court
of conscience, that he stands right there.
He that would keep a pure heart, and lead a blameless life,
must set himself alway in the awefull presence of God, the
consideration of his all-seeing eye will be a bridle to restrain
from evill, and a spur to quicken on to good duties: we certainly
dream of some remotenes betwixt God and us, or else we should not
so often faile in our whole Course of life as we doe; but he that
with David sets the Lord alway in his sight, will not sinne
We see in orchards some trees so fruitful, that the waight of
their Burden is the breaking of their limbs; some again are but
meanly loaden; and some among them are dry stocks: so it is in the
church, which is God's orchard, there are some eminent Christians
that are soe frequent in good dutys, that many times the waight
thereof impares both their bodys and estates; and there are some
(and they sincere ones too) who have not attained to that
fruitfullness, altho they aime at perfection: And again there are
others that have nothing to commend them but only a gay
profession, and these are but leavie Christians, which are in as
much danger of being cut down as the dry stock, for both cumber
We see in the firmament there is but one Sun among a multitude
of starres, and those starres also to differ much one from the
other in regard of bignes and brightnes, yet all receive their
light from that one Sun: so is it in the church both militant
and triumphant, there is but one Christ, who is the Sun of
righteousnes, in the midst of an innumerable company of Saints and
Angels; those Saints have their degrees even in this life, Some
are Stars of the first magnitude, and some of a lesse degree; and
others (and they indeed the most in number), but small and
obscure, yet all receive their luster (be it more or less) from
that glorious Sun that inlightenes all in all; and, if some of
them shine so bright while they move on earth, how transcendently
splendid shall they be when they are fixt in their heavenly
Men that have walked very extravagantly, and at last bethink
themselves of turning to God, the first thing which they eye, is
how to reform their ways rather than to beg forgivenes for their
sinnes; nature lookes more at a Compensation than at a pardon; but
he that will not come for mercy without mony and without price,
but bring his filthy raggs to barter for it, shall meet with
miserable disapointment, going away empty, beareing the reproach
of his pride and folly.
All the works and doings of God are wonderfull, but none more
awfull than his great worke of election and Reprobation; when we
consider how many good parents have had bad children, and againe
how many bad parents have had pious children, it should make us
adore the Soverainty of God who will not be tyed to time nor
place, nor yet to persons, but takes and chuses when and where and
whom he pleases: it should alsoe teach the children of godly
parents to walk with feare and trembling, lest they, through
unbeleif, fall short of a promise: it may also be a support to
such as have or had wicked parents, that, if they abide not in
unbeleif, God is able to grasse them in: the upshot of all should
make us, with the Apostle, to admire the justice and mercy of God,
and say, how unsearchable are his wayes, and his footsteps past
The gifts that God bestows on the sons of men, are not only
abused, but most Commonly imployed for a Clean Contrary end, then
that which might be so many steps to draw men to God in
consideration of his bounty towards them, but have driven them the
further from him, that they are ready to say, we are lords, we
will come no more at thee. If outward blessings be not as wings to
help us mount upwards, they will Certainly prove Clogs and waights
that will pull us lower downward.
All the Comforts of this life may be compared to the gourd of
Jonah, that notwithstanding we take great delight for a season in
them, and find their Shadow very comfortable, yet their is some
worm or other of discontent, of feare, or greife that lyes at
root, which in great part withers the pleasure which else we
should take in them; and well it is that we perceive a decay in
their greennes, for were earthly comforts permanent, who would
look for heavenly?
All men are truly sayd to be tenants at will, and it may as truly
be sayd, that all have a lease of their lives--some longer, some
shorter--as it pleases our great landlord to let. All have their
bounds set, over which they cannot passe, and till the expiration
of that time, no dangers, no sicknes, no paines nor troubles,
shall put a period to our dayes; the certainty that that time will
come, together with the uncertainty how, where, and when, should
make us so to number our days as to apply our hearts to wisedome,
that when wee are put out of these houses of clay, we may be sure
of an everlasting habitation that fades not away.
All weak and diseased bodys have hourly mementos of their
mortality. But the soundest of men have likewise their nightly
monitor by the embleam of death, which is their sleep (for so is
death often called), and not only their death, but their grave is
lively represented before their eyes, by beholding their bed; the
morning may mind them of the resurrection; and the sun approaching,
of the appearing of the sun of righteousnes, at whose comeing
they shall all rise out of their beds, the long night shall
fly away, and the day of eternity shall never end: seeing these
things must be, what manner of persons ought we to be, in all
As the brands of a fire, if once feverered, will of themselves goe
out, altho you use no other meanes to extinguish them, so distance
of place, together with length of time (if there be no intercourse)
will cool the affectiones of intimate friends, though tjere should
be no displeasance between them.
A Good name is as a precious oyntment, and it is a great favor to
have a good repute among good men; yet it is not that which
Commends us to God, for by his ballance we must be weighed, and by
his Judgment we must be tryed, and, as he passes the sentence, So
shall we stand.
Well doth the Apostle call riches deceitfull riches, and they may
truely be compared to deceitfull friends who speake faire, and
promise much, but perform nothing, and so leave those in the lurch
that most relyed on them: so is it with the wealth, honours, and
pleasures of this world, which miserably delude men, and make them
put great confidence in them, but when death threatens, and
distresse lays hold upon them, they prove like the reeds of Egipt
that peirce instead of supporting, like empty wells in the time of
drought, that those that go to finde water in them, return with
their empty pitchers ashamed.
It is admirable to consider the power of faith, by which all
things are (almost) possible to be done; it can remove mountaines
(if need were) it hath stayd the course of the sun, raised the
dead, cast out divels, reversed the order of nature, quenched the
violence of the fire, made the water become firme footing for
Peter to walk on; nay more than all these, it hath overcome the
Omnipotent himself, as when Moses intercedes for the people, God
sath to him, let me alone that I may destroy them, as if Moses had
been able, by the hand of faith, to hold the everlasting arms of
the mighty God of Jacob; yea, Jacob himself, when he wrestled with
God face to face in Peniel: let me go! sath that Angell. I will
not let thee go, replys Jacob, till thou blesse me, faith is not
only thus potent, but it is so necessary that without faith there
is no salvation, therefore, with all our seekings and gettings,
let us above all seek to obtain this pearle of prise.
Some Christians do by their lusts and Corruptions as the Isralits
did by the Canaanites, not destroy them, but put them under
tribute, for that they could do (as they thought) with lesse
hazard, and more profit; but what was the Issue? They became a
snare unto them, prickes in their eyes, and thornes in their
sides, and at last overcame them, and kept them under slavery; so
it is most certain that those that are disobedient to the
Commandment of God, and endeavour not to the utmost to drive out
all their accursed inmates, but make a league with them, they
shall at last fall into perpetuall bondage under them, unlesse the
great deliverer, Christ Jesus come to their rescue.
God hath by his providence so ordered, that no one country hath
all Commoditys within itself, but what it wants, another shall
supply, that so there may be a mutuall Commerce through the world.
As it is with countrys so it is with men, there was never yet any
one man that had all excellences, let his parts, naturall and
acquired, spirituall and morall, be never so large, yet he stands
in need of something which another man hath, (perhaps meaner than
himself,) which shows us perfection is not below, as also, that
God will have us beholden one to another.