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FROM THE WRITINGS OF
MARY JE SUP,
LATE OF HALSTEAD, ESSEX,
SOME ACCOUNT OF TWO OF HER CHILDREN.
"All the paths of the Lord are mercy and truth, unto such as keep
HARVEY AND DARTON, GRACECHURCH-STREET.
MAI 2 1937
HARVEY AND DARTON, PRINTERS,
THE following pages are introduced to public view from the consideration, that, to some by whom the writer was known and valued, they will possess the interest which such recollections naturally excite, while it is hoped that the instructive remarks contained in this abridged journal, and the exemplification of the Christian character which it exhibits as very much maintained from youth to a period extended far beyond what might have been expected from the delicate state of her health, may tend to quicken in others, the desire which she recorded when about seventeen years of age, and which continued to be the exercise of her mind throughout her earthly pilgrimage,—that she might be purified, and made what her Heavenly Father would have her to be.
Mary Jesup, daughter of John and Elizabeth Brown, was born at Bayford near Hertford on the 3rd of 3rd month, 1770. Her mother died in her childhood, but the loss of maternal care was much supplied by her valued aunt, Mary Jackson.* * At an early period of her life, continued
* For some account of this Friend, see Piety Promoted. Part XI.
bodily weakness, with symptoms which threatened consumption, induced and afforded frequent opportunities for serious reflection, often during walks taken for the improvement of her health. Being thus introduced to an experimental knowledge of the benefit of retirement and exercise of spirit as in the Divine presence, it continued to be her frequent practice through life; and her concern that her friends might be more generally impressed with the importance of thus seeking for fresh supplies of spiritual food, was evinced in the publication of an address, printed in the year 1820.
There appears to be but little to add to the explanatory notices which are placed at intervals in the Diary, to enable the reader to trace the Christian course of this beloved friend; but it may be interesting to learn that, while thus earnestly desirous to be found diligently pursuing the path of religious duty, she was strengthened to sustain the various trials which fell to her lot with a great degree of resignation. This blessed experience, with a cheerful natural disposition, enabled her, notwithstanding the infirmity of deafness, to remark during her last illness, that she thought few had enjoyed life more than herself. Her company was thus rendered agreeable to her young friends, and she often evinced the interest she felt on their behalf, by epistolary correspondence, on which it is believed a blessing frequently attended.
One who had for many years enjoyed this privilege of her friendship, when informed of her decease, expressed his feelings in the following terms:-"Thy letter, received this morning, has deeply interested and affected us: though prepared for its contents, we cannot, in looking back to the personal worth and Christian excellence of our dear departed relative, hear of her removal without a renewed consciousness of all those gentle, unobtrusive, and truly Christian graces, which adorned her character, and so justly endeared her to those who had the privilege of truly knowing her. But He whom she has served faithfully, has indeed dealt mercifully with his servant, in releasing her from further suffering and conflict; and for her we are bound to return Him thanks, giving and praise. In my own small circle of friends I can call to mind no one, now removed by death from works to rewards, with the exception of my revered uncle, whom living I loved more, whom, though dead, I shall oftener and longer remember."
Her desire to discharge her highest duties, as a wife and a mother, is evident in the Diary and letters to her children; and it is not too much to say that it was answered by ability to fill these important relations so as to adorn her profession. Friends of her Monthly Meeting say, in their testimony respecting her, "In her conduct and conversation she was watchful and circumspect, and in her frequent association with those not