Page:Sketch of Connecticut, Forty Years Since.djvu/22

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by the best education which this country afforded, had pursued its scientific researches in Europe, and become exalted both by extensive knowledge, and rational piety. It was his pleasure to employ his wealth in the relief of indigence, and the encouragement of enterprise. He was early revered as the patron of merit in obscurity, and his name is still enrolled by the grateful town which gave him birth, as first in the list of its benefactors. United in the warmth of his earliest affections to a kindred spirit, they shared all the blessings of a perfect union of hearts. Many years of conjugal felicity had been their portion. But she was at length appointed to watch the progress of a protracted and fatal disease, and to mark with still keener anguish the mental decay of him who had been her instructer and counsellor. "I have seen an end of all perfection," she said, as his strong and brilliant powers yielded to the sway of sickness and when she bent in agony over his grave, she put her trust in the widow's God. The earlier part of their union had seen three sons rising like olive-plants around their table. The eldest exhibited at the age of seven a precocity of intellect, and i maturity of character, which at once astonished and delighted the beholder. To store his memory with moral and sublime passages, to sit a solitary student over his book, to request explanations of subjects beyond his reason, were his pleasures. The sports of his cotemporaries were emptiness to him, and while he forebore to censure, he withdrew himself from them. Within his reflecting