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WHITFIELD IN WALES..

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WHITFIELD IN WALES. (From Frazer's Magazine, for February.) Some of Whitfield's most efficient labours are recorded to have been in WaleS which, at the time o v,s,t appears to have been in a very dark state. In a condition of ignorance and gloom, it is natural to expect that a startling and daring: oratory would make itself felt. The contrast would he the more readily perceived. The condition of the Welsh at the period of our orator's inroads is thus described in a Welsh periodical, called the Trysorra On Sunday mornings, the poor were more con- stant in their attendance at church than the gentry but the Sunday evenings were spent by all in idle amusements. Every" Sunday there was what was called .4cfiuaren-ffamp,' a sort of sport in which all the young men of the neig-hhoul hood had a trial of strength; and the people assembled from the' surrounding country to see their feats. Oa Saturday night, particularly in the summer, the youno- men and maids held what they called Siii,inZ eves' (ATosueithan cann) that is, they met together, and diverted themselves by singing, in turns, to the harp, till the dawn ofthe Sabbath. At first sight, nothing would appear more improbable than that Melhodi.,m should find proselytes among: a people so git). and thoughtless as the Welsh of that period; or that the joyous group which assembled at Bala, on a Sunday evening, should become, as was shortly afterwards the case, a leading congregation of modern Puntass. But the religion of the Welsh, and their fondness for national music, arose from the same cause, an earnest and imaginative frame of mind. A disposition to melancholy, disguised by external gaiety of manner is characteristic of all Celtic mtram. = As a beam o'er the facc.of the waters may glow, Though the stream runs in darkness and coldness below.' With all their social sprightliness, the Welsh were then a superstitious, and consequently, a gloomy race. Tbe influence of the Church had. con- fessedly, done little to civilUe the people they still retained many habits, appar-etitly derived from Paganism, and not a few of the practices of Popery. When Whitfield and the Methodists came into North Wales, the peasantry expressed their borrer of them and their opinions by the truly Popish gesture of crossing their foreheads they also paid great veneration to a tale called • Brenddvyd Mair or Mary's D;eam, a Popish legend. Children were taught to repeat the following rhyme on being put to bed There are four comers to my bed, And four angels there are spread— Matthew, Mark, Lukevand John4 Bless the bed that I lie on.' On the Sunday after a funeral, each relation of the deceased knelt on his grave, exclaiming 'JVetr- edd tddo r i. e. • Heaveu to hin, If children died before their parents, the latter regarded ihem as so many candles to light them to Paradise. Amoiio- a people in an evideutly semi-barbarous state, Whitfield kindled what he called the Welsh fire." Light broke in on their superstition, and one la&tpess of idolatry gave way after another, till not anty Citi-iitianity, but, we fear, very wild and ques- tionable formults ofit, gained the ascendency.

-------FROM TRIl LONDON GAIBTTDS…

Family Notices

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BRI,CO.V, Saturday, Feb. 17,…

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