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§ 11. While these things were managing, there happened some very surprizing prodigies, which were lookt upon as testimonies from Heaven, against the ways of those greater prodigies, the sectaries. The erroneous jedlewoman her self, convicted of holding about thirty monstrous opinions, growing big with child, and at length coming to her time of travail, was delivered of about thirty monstrous births at once; whereof some were vinger, some were lesser; of several figures; few of any perfect, none of ariy humane shape. This was a thing generally then asserted and believed; whereas, by some that were eye-witnesses, it is affirmed that these were 29 more monstrous births, than what it is frequent for women, labouring with false conceptions, to produce. Moreover, one very nearly related unto this gentlewoman, and infected with her heresies, was on October 17, 1637, helivered of as hideous a monster as perhaps the sun ever lookt upon.
It Lad no head: the face was below upon the breast: the ears were like an ale's, and grew upon the shoulders; the eyes and mouth stood far out; Le nose was hooking upwards; the breast and back were full of short prickles, like a thorn-back; the navel, belly, and the distinction of sex, slich was female, were in the place of the hips; and those back-parts were on the same side with the face; the arms, hands, thighs and legs, were as other childrens; but instead of toes, it had on each foot three claws, with taleons like a fowl: upon the back above the belly it had a Euple of great holes like mouths; and in each of them stood out a couple c? pieces of flesh; it had no forehead, but above the eyes it had four horns; tro of above an inch long, hard and sharp; and the other two somewhat As The midwife was one strongly suspected of witchcraft; and a prime Familist: thro' whose witchcrafts probably it came to pass that most of Lise women present at the travel were suddenly taken with such a violent amiting and purging, tho they had neither eaten nor drunken any thing to occasion it, that they were forced immediately to go home: others had
ir children so taken with convulsions, which they never had before or ater, that they also were sent for home immediately; whence none were eft at the time of the monster's birth, but the midwife and two more, z bereof one was fallen asleep: and about the time of the monster's death, wich was two hours before his birth, such an odd shake was by invisible Lunds given to the bed as terrify'd the standers-by. It was buried with. cit noise of its monstrosity; but it being whispered a few days after about in town, the magistrates ordered the opening of the grave, whereby there Bis discovered this
Monstrum, horrendum, in forme, ingens.*
But of this monster, good reader, let us talk no further: for at this estant I find an odd passage in a letter of the famous Mr. Thomas Loker about this matter; namely, this: “While I was thus musing, and
• A monster, hideous, shapeless, huge.-VIRGIL.
thus writing, my study where I was writing, and the chamber where my wife was sitting, shook, as we thought, with an earthquake, by the space of half a quarter of an hour. We both perceived it, and presently went down. My maid in the kitchen observed the same. My wife said, it was the devil that was displeased that we confer about this occasion.”
$ 12. It was but a few years after these things—namely, in the year 1643—that the government of Barbadoes, being disturbed by such turbu. lent and tumultuous Familists as those which now pestered New-England, were forced by their outrages to sentence them with banishment. Nor must it be made a reproach, if New-England also ordered a sort of banishment for these intoxicated sectaries, who began to deny or degrade the magistracy of the country, and call the king of England, "the king of Babylon;" but you shall hear the effect of that procedure. Being advised of an island beyond Cape-Cod, and near the Narraganset-Bay, they fairly purchased it of the natives; thither they transplanted themselves with their families; in this transplantation, accompanied by many others of their own uncertainty in religion, who yet had not come under any censures of either the court or the church for their misdemeanours. Having peopled this island, now known by the name of Rhode Island, they swarmed over unto the main, where they also purchased some tracts of land, now covered with the two towns of Providence and Warwick; for all of which they obtained at last a charter from King Charles II., with ample priviledges. I cannot learn that the first planters of this colony were agreed in any one prin ciple so much as this, "that they were to give one another no disturbance in the exercise of religion;" and tho' they have sometimes had some dif ference among them, as to the exercise of that principle also, I believe there never was held such a variety of religions together on so small a spol of ground as have been in that colony. It has been a colluvies of Antino mians, Familists, Anabaptists, Anti-sabbatarians, Arminians, Socinians Quakers, Ranters, every thing in the world but Roman Catholicks, and real Christians, tho' of the latter, I hope, there have been more than of the former among them; so that, if a man had lost his religion, he might fim i at the general muster of opinionists! 'Tis a good piece of antiquity that Josephus has given us, when he tells us the consequences of Nehemiah' chasing away a son of Jojada, the son of Eliash the high-priest
, for marry ing the daughter of Sanballat the Heronite, the chief person among tht Samaritans. The father-in-law of this Menasses (for it seems that was his name) built a temple on Gerizzim, in opposition to that at Jerusalem, arc obtained a charter from the kings of Persia for the encouragement thereof that so his daughter Nicasso (for so she was called) might not lose her husband, who was thus made a Metropolitan. After this time, all thai were indicted for crimes at Jerusalem, would fly to Gerizzim, and Sichem was now the common receptacle and sanctuary of Jewish offenders: This -as R. Abrah. Zaccuth tells us—"this was the beginning of heresie!'
with some allusion to that piece of antiquity, I may venture to say, that Rhode Island has usually been the Gerizzim of New-England. The island is indeed, for the fertility of the soil, the temperateness of the air, the commodiousness of scituation, the best garden of all the colonies; and were it free from serpents, I would have called it, "the paradise of NewEngland;" but the number of sensible and ingenious gentlemen, whereof there are some upon the island, will find it hard enough to rescue it from an extream danger of that character, Bona Terra, Mala Gens* The condition of the rising generation upon that island, is indeed exceeding lamentable! Lactantius complains of Arcesilaus, that having much considered the contradictions of the philosophers one unto another, at last be contemned them all, and instituted a new philosophy, of not philosophising at all. The former generation of Rhode Islanders is now generally gone off the stage; and all the messengers which the churches of the Massachuset-colony, whereto any of them did belong, sent with admonitions after them, could reclaim very few of them; the rising generation, confounded by the controdictions in relipion among their parents, and under many horrible temptations, and under some unhappy tendencies to be of no religion at all; and when the ministers of this province have several times, at their own united expences, employ'd ezrtain ministers of the gospel, to make a chargeless tender of preaching the word among them, this charitable offer of ministers has been refused; tho'it seems they are now beginning to embrace it; the indefatigable, and evangelical, and very laudable industry of Mr. John Danforth, the minister of Dorchester, has, with the blessing of our Lord thereupon, overcome a Eumber of them, not only to hear the gospel from a worthy young preacher, Mr. Nathaniel Clap, sent thither, but also to build a meeting-house for that purpose; yea, and the liberal merchants of Boston have, in this present. Fear 1695, been exemplary, by their bearing the expences of ministers #cich we have sent forth to make tenders of the gospel unto other Paganwing plantations on the Main belonging to that colony; albeit some of ituse tenders also have been scandalously rejected by the inhabitants. If I should now launch forth into a narrative of the marvellous lewd things which have been done and said by the giddy sectaries of this island, I confess the matter would be agreeable enough to the nature and the design of a church history, and for a warning unto all to take heed how they forsake the word of God and bis ordinances in the societies of the faithful, azd follow the conduct of new lights, that are no more than so many fool'sfires in the issue; but the merriment arising from the ridiculous and extravagant occurrences therein, would not be agreeable to the gravity of soch an history. Wherefore I forbear it; only wishing that the people of 1. is island may effectually feel the favourable influences and protections of the crown of England, extended unto them, inasmuch as the ridiculously conical expressions of their late address to the Queen, January 30, 1689,
• A goodly land, a bad people,
are, “May it please your excellent majesty: we humbly petition your most excellent majestie's grace and favour towards us your most bumble subjects and supplicants, that you would please, being Pater Patriæ,* to extend your fatherly care, in granting a confirmation to our charter." Whereupon they add, "Your transcendant love and favour extended towards us, hath so radicated it self in our hearts, never to be forgotten, that it obliges us to offer up our selves, lives, and fortunes, to be at you majesty's service, beyond the power of any command.”
OR, THE MOLESTATIONS GIVEN TO THE CHURCHES OF NEW-ENGLAND
BY THAT ODD SECT OF PEOPLE CALLED QUAKERS.
AND SOME UNCOMFORTABLE OCCURRENTS RELATING TO A SECT OF OTHER AND BETTER PEOPLE
Hereses non dolemus venisse, quia novimus esse
§ 1. If the churches of our Lord Jesus Christ must in every age assaulted by HERETICKS, acting under the energy of that old serpent, wł knowing that as the first creation, so the new creation begins with lig hath used thousands of blinds to keep a saving light from entring into tl • souls of men, that being a "people of wrong understanding, he that ma them shall not have mercy on them;" it must be expected that the church of New England should undergo some assaults from the worst of HEB TICKS that this age has produced. Now, I know not whether the se which hath appeared in our days under the name of Quakers, be not up many accounts the worst of hereticks; for in Quakerism, which has some been called, the "sink of all heresies,” we see the vomit cast out the by-past ages, by whose kennels of seducers, lick'd up again for a n digestion, and once more exposed for the poisoning of mankind; though pretends unto light, yet by the means of that very pretence it leaves t bewildred souls of men "in chains unto darkness," and gives them up the conduct of an Ignis Fatuus: but this I know, they have been t most venomous of all to the churches of America. The beginning this upstart sect has been declared, by one who was a pillar of it, i pamphlet written in the year 1659, where this passage occurs: “It is n about seven years since the Lord raised us up:" And the north of E
• Father of his country.
and was reckon'd the place of its nativity. Nevertheless, I can tell the borld that the first Quakers that ever were in the world, were certain Kanaticks here in our town of Salern, who held forth almost all the fancies and whimsies which a few years after were broached by them that were o called in England, with whom yet none of ours had the least commuication: except my reader will rather look for the first Quakers at the dephian Oracle upon Parnassus, [originally perhaps yndyra, Parai-nahas, , Hiatus Divinationis*] where the usage was, for a certain woman sitting pon a tripos over a cave, to be possessed with a dæmon, in the Scripture plied Ob, which entring into her, she was immediately taken with an xtraordinary trembling of her whole body, and foaming horribly, there sued from her the prophecies which enchanted all the world into a veneraduo of them. Our Salem Quakers indeed of themselves died childless; ut the numbers of those in England increasing, they did in the year 1657 and a way into New-England, where they first infested Plymouth colony,
were for a while most unhappily successful in seducing the people not Bly to attend unto the mystical dispensations of the light within, as having e whole of religion contained therein, but also to oppose the good order, bah cirl and sacred, erected in the colony. Those persons in the Massaasets-colony, whose office it was to be watchmen of it, were much umed at the approach of so great a plague, and were at some loss how prevent it, and avoid it. Although Quakerism has, by the new-turn such ingenious men as Mr. PENN have given to it, become quite a ething; yet the old Foxian Quakerism, which then visited New-Eng
was the grossest collection of blasphemies and confusions that ever was pari of. The CHRIST then witnessed by the Quakers was “a certain arenly
, divine body, constituted of invisible flesh, blood and bones, in hich Christ came from Heaven; and he put that body into the other er of our nature, which he took of the Virgin, and that outermost body leit behind, when he ascended into heaven, nobody knows where; and beavenly and spiritual body” (which the Quakers at length evaporate a meet mystical dispensation, and at last it is nothing but that excusing Il condemning principle in man which we call the natural conscience!) the Man Christ, a measure of which is in the Quakers; upon which ounts the Quakers made themselves to be Christ's as truly as ever was is the Son of Mary." There is in every man a certain excusing and biemning principle, which indeed is nothing but some remainder of the ide image, left by the compassion of God upon the conscience of man his fall; and this principle the Quakers called, "a measure of the Christ—the light, the seed, the word.” The whole history of the el they therefore beheld as acted over again every day as literally as er it was in Palestine; and what befals this principle in us, they adbed as the truth of Christ "sacrificed for us, dying, risen, sitting at the
• A cave of divination.