Page:A Collection of Several Philosophical Writings of Dr. Henry More.djvu/137

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Chap. III.
An Antidote Against Atheism

partly for the both copiousness and sutableness of the Story to the prelent Theme; but lastly and chiefly, for the unexceptionable truth and Authentickness of the Narration: the observation of these strange passages being made not by ** Nor writ by one pen. For Marcelin, a Preacher when at Mascon, wrote the same story; and Ternus, a frequent eye-witness of the pranks of this Dæmon, left a Relation written and signed with his own hand which Perreand kept by him. one solitary person, but by many together; nor by a person of suspected integrity, but of singular gravity and exemplarity of life; nor carelesly or credulously, but cautiously and diligently, by searching every corner of the house, and setting bolts and barricadoes to all the doors and windows thereof, stopping the very Cat-holes of the doors, and leaving nothing that might give way to suspicion of Imposture; a candle also burning every night all the night long, the places also from whence the voice came in the day-time being searched and the things therein by divers persons, from whence when one Simeon Meissonier had amongst other things brought away a bottle, the Devil fell a laughing, that he should think him such a fool as to goe into it, as being liable thereby to be stopped up therein by his finger; and lastly, the Experience made not once or twice, but in a manner every day for a quarter of a year together.

To the truth of the miraculousness of the Narration the silence of the Dog gives also further suffrage, he being otherwise very watchfull and ready to bark at the least noise, and yet never barking at the loud speaking and hideous noises of the Dæmon: Which the prophane Goblin himself took notice of, roguishly avouching that it was because he had made the sign of the Cross on his head; for he was then on a merry pin and full of jearing.

To all which you may further adde the Authority of the Reverend and Learned Mr P. Du Moulin, Father to the now Dr Du Moulin, and the smart judicious reasoning of his accomplish'd Son, in his Preface to Mr Perreand's Relation, namely, That this familiar Conversation of the Devil was not in a corner or in a Desart (where the Melancholy of Witches is supposed to make them fancy they converse with him) but in the midst of a great City, in an house where there was daily a great resort to hear him speak, and where men of contrary Religions met together; whose proneness to cast a disgrace upon the dissenting parties did occasion the narrow examining and full confirming the truth thereof, both by the Magistrate and by the Diocesan of the place.

And lastly, that nothing may be wanting to convince the incredulous, we adjoyn the Testimony of that excellently-learned and noble Gentleman Mr R. Boyle, who conversed with Mr Perreand himself at Geneva, where he received from him as a present a Copie of his Book before it was printed, and where he had the opportunity to enquire both after the Writer and several passages of his Book; and was so well satisfied, that he professes that all his settled indisposedness to believe strange things was overcome by this special Conviction.

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