It was just a hundred years ago that the first edition of Thomas Shepard’s Autobiography was published. The original manuscript, after a long period of incompletely charted wandering, had shortly before come into the permanent possession of the Shepard Congregational Society (now known as the First Church in Cambridge, Congregational). Although the spelling of the original was not so “carefully preserved” as the editor maintained, the most serious flaw, according to modern standards, was the omission of sentences “conceived to be, both in matter and manner, unsuited to what some call the fastidiousness, but others the refinement and delicacy of the age.” Such scruples, fortunately, did not hold with Alexander Young when, in 1846, he re-edited the manuscript for his Chronicles of Massachusetts Bay. He limited himself to the Autobiography proper, omitting much else of a miscellaneous character written in the same manuscript by Shepard, and at the same time completely modernizing the spelling and “correcting” the punctuation.

    The present edition, offered by the Society as its contribution to the Massachusetts Tercentenary, has, through the courtesy of the present owners, been based on a fresh study of the manuscript, photostats of which are in the possession of the Harvard College Library. With a few minor exceptions, noted as they occur, the original has been followed with all possible exactness, both as to spelling and punctuation. Shepard’s own alterations in the text, when of a purely technical character, have not been indicated; but additions of previous editors have been clearly distinguished as such. The present editor has supplied words and letters only where their omission seemed to him to place undue obstacles in the path of the modern reader. Such additions have in every case been italicized and bracketed.

    To the historian, whether of the old or the new school, Shepard’s record is of the greatest importance. The layman, deafened by the din of anniversary oratory and confused by recent literary assaults on the Puritans, may well go to this Autobiography for an authentic mirror of the Puritan as he was, and of the world as it appeared to him. The interview with Laud is already a classic in our annals. The stories of youthful follies at the University recall Havelock Ellis’s dictum that the most effective saints are those who have been sinners; for it was largely due to the saintly character of Shepard, and his power over young men, that Harvard College was fixed at Cambridge. One merit of an autobiography such as this, is that it conceals nothing. Certain episodes and phrases reveal Puritan attitudes which are repulsive or incomprehensible to moderns; but taken as a whole, there emerges a personality that goes far to explain the authority exercised by the early New England clergy; and to support one writer who ventures the position that the secret of their power “was their character, and the love that they bore to their people and their God.”


    unpublished manuscripts

    The Confessions of diuerse ꝑpounded to be receiued & were entertayned as members. (Shepard’s own account of the statements as to their conversion given by various members of his church. The original is in the possession of the New England Historic Genealogical Society; enlarged photostats are at the H. C. L. and the M. H. S.).

    Diary, November 25, 1640 to March 28, 1644. (At N. Y. P. L. Recto of first leaf has genealogical data written by Shepard of his sons Thomas, Samuel, and John; on the verso a continuation with the record of his second son John and his son Jeremiah. Recto of leaf 2 has at top, in Shepard’s hand: “This booke I leaue with my son Thomas,” etc. Following the diary there are six leaves, of which leaf 5 recto has a memorandum by Shepard on “Hypocrisy”; leaf 6 verso has some additional diary notes by him of March, 1642, one being of an earthquake. On the verso of leaf 2 at the beginning of the ms. and on the recto of leaf 3 following the diary are notes by Ezra Stiles whose church was presented with the ms. on January 3, 1771. The diary to December 27, 1641 was printed by Thomas Prince in Three Valuable Pieces (see below). The M. H. S. has a copy of the portion from December 28, 1641 to March 12, 1642.)

    Explication of the Catechism. A series of sermons, containing marginal dates of composition: January 21, 1643, June 29, 1644, May 4, 1645. One volume. (At A. A. S.)

    Letter to Richard Mather, April 2, 1636. (At M. H. S.)

    Sacramental Sermons, 1648. Unbound ms. (At A. A. S.)

    Sermons by Thomas Shepard and Thomas Allen, 1644; also shorthand notes supposed to be by Francis Willoughby. One volume. (At A. A. S.)


    Key to Abbreviations


    American Antiquarian Society


    Henry E. Huntington Library


    Boston Athenaeum


    John Carter Brown Library


    Boston Public Library


    Library of Congress


    British Museum


    Massachusetts Historical Society


    Congregational Library


    New York Historical Society


    Connecticut Historical Society

    NY PL.

    New York Public Library


    Essex Institute


    Watkinson Library of Reference, Hartford


    Harvard College Library


    Yale University Library

    certain select cases resolved. Specially, tending to the right ordering of the heart, that we may comfortably walke with God in our general and particular Callings. London, 1648 (bpl. bm. hc. yu.), 1650 (ba. bpl. bm. hc. jcb. mhs. nyhs. nypl. yu.), 1655, in Theses Sabbaticae (aas. bpl. chs. ei. hc. jcb. wl. yu.), 1695 (mhs. nypl.). Under the title Some Select Cases Resolved it was included by Prince in Three Valuable Pieces.

    the church-membership of children, and their Right to Baptisme, According to that holy and everlasting Covenant of God, established between Himself, and the Faithfull and their Seed after them, in their Generations: Cleared up in a Letter, sent unto a worthy Friend of the Author, and many Yeares agoe written touching that subject. Cambridge, 1663 (bpl. hc. jcb. mhs. nypl. yu.), 1669 (?); Boston, 1762; New London, 1769 (cl. hc.); Hartford, 1786 (jcb.).

    the clear sun-shine of the gospel breaking forth upon the Indians in New-England. London, 1648 (aas. ba. bpl. bm. cl. hc. hl. jcb. lc. mhs. nyhs. nypl. wl.); New York, 1865 (Sabin Reprints, x); 3 Massachusetts Historical Society Collections, iv. 37–67. (The third of the so-called “Eliot Tracts.”)

    the day-breaking, if not The Sun-Rising of the Gospell With the Indians in New-England. London, 1647 (bpl. hc. hl. jcb. lc. nypl.); New York, 1865 (Sabin Reprints, ix); 3 Massachusetts Historical Society Collections, iv. 1–23; Old South Leaflets, General Series, No. 143. (The second of the Eliot Tracts; published anonymously, it has also been attributed to Eliot himself and to John Wilson.)

    a defense of the answer made unto the Nine Questions or Positions sent out from New-England, Against the Reply thereto by That Reverend Servant of Christ, Mr. John Ball; Entituled, A Tryall of the New Church-way in New England and in Old. London, 1648 (aas. bm. cl. hc. nyhs. nypl.). Written in association with John Allin, of Dedham; under Shepard’s name alone, and under the title A Treatise of Liturgies, it was published in London in 1652 (lc.) and 1653 (bm. cl. hc. jcb. yu.). The preface to the first edition was included in Massachusetts or the First Planters of New England (Boston, 1696), pp. 28–40.

    election sermon, 1638. (An outline, from the original manuscript now lost, is printed in the New England Historical Genealogical Register, xxiv. 361–366.)

    the first principles of the Oracles of God. (Printed with Certain Select Cases Resolved, 1648, 1650, 1655, 1695; and in Three Valuable Pieces; see those titles for locations; known as the Cambridge Catechism.)

    four necessary cases of conscience of Daily Use. London, 1651 (nypl.).

    meditations and spiritual experiences of Mr. Thomas Shepard . . . from November 25, 1640 to December 27, 1641. Edinburgh, 1749 (aas. ba. bm. hc. jcb. nypl. yu.); Glasgow, 1847 (bm.); also in Three Valuable Pieces; a portion of the Diary mentioned above.

    new englands lamentations for Old Englands present errours, and divisions, and their feared future desolations if not timely prevented. London, 1645 (bpl. bm. cl. hc. jcb. mhs. nypl.).

    the parable of the ten virgins opened & applied. London, 1660 (aas. bpl. bm. hc. hl. jcb. mhs. nyhs. nypl. yu.), 1695 (aas. ba. bm. cl. chs. hc. jcb. nyhs. yu.); Glasgow, 1796 (bm.); Falkirk, 1797 (bpl. bm. jcb. yu.); Boston, 1852 (bpl.); Aberdeen, 1838 (jcb.), 1853 (bm. nyhs.).

    the saints jewel, n. p., 1642 (jcb.); Boston, 1743 (bpl. cl. chs. jcb.); published with The Sincere Convert in editions of 1655, 1657, 1659, 1664 (London), 1667, 1672, 1680, 1692, 1812; see that title for locations.

    a short catechism Familiarly Teaching the Knowledge of God and of our Selves. Cambridge, 1654. Reproduced in Massachusetts Historical Society’s Photostat Americana, No. 251 (hl. jcb. mhs. nyhs. nypl. yu.).

    the sincere convert, Discovering the Paucity of True Beleevers; and the great difficulty of Saving Conversion. London, 1640 (jcb. — one of two known copies), 1641 (bpl. bm. hc. jcb.), 1642 (wl.), 1643 (bpl. bm. nyhs.), 1646 (hc. yu.), 1648 (bpl. cl. jcb. nypl.), 1650 (bm. hc. mhs. yu.), 1652 (mhs. nypl. wl.), 1655 (bpl. hc. jcb. yu.), 1657 (jcb. nypl. wl.), 1659 (bpl. bm. hc. jcb.), 1664 (aas. bpl.), 1667 (wl.), 1672 (bpl. bm. hc.), 1680 (jcb.), 1692 (bpl. chs. hc.), 1839 (nypl.); Edinburgh, 1647, 1714 (bm.); Cambridge, 1664; Glasgow, 1667, 1734 (bm.); Boston, 1742 (aas. ba. bpl. cl. ei. hc. jcb. yu.); Philadelphia, 1743; New York, 1743; Paisley, 1812. Also translated by John Eliot and Grindall Rawson into the Indian language and published by them under the title Sampwutteahae Quinnnuppekompauaenin, Cambridge, 1689 (aas. ba. jcb. mhs. nypl. yu.); also a German translation, by Nicolaus Leydecker (Thomas Scheppards, weil Prediger in London, schmaler Weg zum Leben; oder, Die wahre Bekehrung durch Christum zu Gott. . . .), “Pennsylvanien,” 1838 (nypl.), the preface to which states that there had been two previous editions in Germany in 1712 and 1754.

    the soul’s invitation unto Jesus Christ. (In 1655 and later editions of The Sincere Convert.)

    the sound beleever. Or, A Treatise of Evangelicall Conversion. London, 1645 (bpl. bm. hl. wl. yu.), 1649 (bm. hc. jcb. wl.), 1652 (bpl. cl. jcb. mhs.), 1653 (bpl. bm. chs. hc. hl. jcb. nyhs. nypl. yu.), 1659 (bpl. cl. ei. hc.), 1670 (bpl. hc. mhs.), 1671 (bm. jcb.); Edinburgh, 1645 (bm.), 1650 (hc. wl.), 1658 (wl.); Aberdeen, 1730 (bm.); Glasgow, 1734 (jcb.), 1737; Boston, 1724 (mhs.), 1736 (ba. bm. cl. chs. ei. hc. jcb.), 1742 (bpl. cl. ei hc. jcb. nypl. yu.).

    subjection to christ in all his Ordinances, and Appointments, The best means to preserve our Liberty. Together with a Treatise of Ineffectual Hearing the Word. London, 1652 (aas. bpl. bm. hc. jcb. mhs. wl.), 1654 (hc. nypl.), 1657 (bpl. cl. hc. jcb. mhs. yu.).

    theses sabbaticae. Or, The Doctrine of the Sabbath. London, 1649 (bpl. bm. hc. hl. jcb. wl. yu.), 1650 (aas. bpl. bm. cl. chs. h.c. hl. jcb. mhs. nyhs.), 1655 (bpl. ei. hc. jcb. mhs. nypl. wl. yu.); Boston, 1747.

    a treatise of liturgies. See under A Defense of the Answer.

    two questions, Viz. i. Whether an account of the Work of Grace is to be required of those that are Admitted to full Communion in the Church? ii. Whether the whole Church is to be Judge thereof? Judiciously Answered. Boston, 1697 (mhs.).

    wine for gospel wantons: or, Cautions against Spirituall Drunkenness. Cambridge, 1668 (aas. hc.).

    prefaces to others’ writings

    Peter Bulkley’s The Gospel-Covenant. London, 1646, 1651 (jcb. nyhs.).

    George Phillips’ A Reply to a Confutation of some grounds for infants Baptisme. London, 1645 (bpl. hl. nypl.).

    the autobiography

    The Autobiography of Thomas Shepard, the Celebrated Minister of Cambridge, N. E. Nehemiah Adams, ed., Boston, 1832.

    Thomas Shepard’s Memoir of his own Life. In Alexander Young’s Chronicles of The First Planters of The Colony of Massachusetts Bay (Boston, 1846), pp. 499–558.

    collected works

    Three Valuable Pieces. Thomas Prince, ed. Boston, 1747 (aas. ba. bpl. cl. chs. jcb. lc. mhs. yu.).

    The Works of Thomas Shepard. 3v., Boston, 1853.


    Letters of Shepard are published in 4 Massachusetts Historical Society Collections, vii. 257–272, and 2 Massachusetts Historical Society Proceedings, v. 104 (to Governor John Winthrop); American Historical Review, iv. 105 (to Hugh Peter).

    biographies, etc.

    John A. Albro, Life of Thomas Shepard. In Lives of the Chief Fathers of New England, iv., Boston, 1847, 1870. (This also appeared in the 1853 edition of Shepard’s collected works.)

    Andrew McF. Davis, A Few Words about the Writings of Thomas Shepard. In Cambridge Historical Society Publications, iii. 79–89.

    Andrew McF. Davis, Hints of Contemporary Life in the Writings of Thomas Shepard. Our Publications, xii. 136–162.

    Cotton Mather, Pastor Evangelicus, The Life of Thomas Shepard. In Magnolia Christi Americana (ed. 1702), Bk. iii. 84–93. (Mather clearly had access to the manuscript of the Autobiography in writing this sketch.)

    Samuel E. Morison, “Master Thomas Shepard.” Chapter iv of his Builders of the Bay Colony, Boston, 1930.

    Alexander Whyte, Thomas Shepard, Pilgrim Father and Founder of Harvard; His Spiritual Experience and Experimental Preaching. Edinburgh and London, 1909. (See Professor Fenn’s comments in our Publications, xiii. 224–225.)


    To my deare son Thomas Shepard

    with whom I Ieaue these records

    of gods great kindnes to him

    not knowing that I shall

    liue to tell them my selfe

    with my own mouth,

    that so he may learne

    to know & loue

    the great &

    most high

    god: the god of

    his father:

    In the yeare of the Lord 1634; Octob: 16: my selfe & family, with my first Son Thomas, committed our selues to the care of or god to keepe vs on & to carry vs ouer the mighty seas from old England to new England; but we had not bin 2 dayes on the sea, but that the wind arose & draue our ship almost vpon the sands where the Lord did most apparently stretch foorth his hands in sauing of vs from them when we were within a very little ready to be dasht in peeces vpon them; & this or danger of sinking & loosing all or liues was twise in 2 seuerall dayes, that if there had not bin [2]. the infinite wisdō & power of god to helpe vs I doe not conceiue how possibly we could haue escaped in such terrible stormes; now on cause of or going at this time of winter was because my wife was conceiued of this second son Thomas; & because we were psecuted in old England for the truth of Xt wc we ꝑfesse here; we durst not stay to make or selues known which would haue bin at the baptizing of the child, hence we hastned for New England; & therefore though thou my deare son wast not borne then, yet thou wert in the dangers of the sea in thy mothers woombe then & see how god hath miraculously preserued thee, that thou art still aliue, & thy mothers woombe & the terrible seas haue not bin thy graue; woonder at & loue this god for euer:

    after that we came from the sea, my first son fell sick in passing from the ship to the shore in the boat, of which sicknes within a fortnight after he dyed at Yarmouth in old England which was no small greefe to vs; but the Lord [3] preserued vs & prouided for me & my wife a hiding place from the knowledge of or enemies & from there malice, by the meanes of Mris Corbet in Norfolke; in on of whose houses we stayed all that hard winter with our deare freind mr Roger Harlakenden & enjoyed a sweet time together in a most retyred manner; so the winter being spent & my wiues time of trauayle in child bed drawing nigh, we were much pplexed whether to goe & where to stay that we might not be known & keepe the child so secretly as that it might not be baptized vntill it came to take of that ordinance in purity in old England; & being thus doubtful what to doe, the Lord by letters from London called vs to come thither where my wife might haue all helpe in the time of her extremity & my child kept secret; & this we concluded for to doe; & therefore tooke our leaue of this or winter house & in or way to London we went to mr Burrowes561, his house a godly able minister, where my wife when shee was big & great with child; of thee my son Thomas, shee fell down from the top to the bottom of his staires with her back so hurt that all of vs did thinke & feare her child could not but be slaine or hurt [4] with this sore fall; but her selfe felt not much hurt & her child had none; oh remember my son to know & loue this god that here did pitty & spare thee in thy mothers woombe a second time; from this place we went to London; my wife thus big with child very safe, & well & there the Lord ꝑuided for my wife & selfe & freinds a very priuate house where our freinds did vs all the good they could & or enemies could do vs no hurt; where my wife on the sabboth day being Aprill. 5. 1635. was deliuerd562 mercifully of this 2d son Thomas; which name I gaue him; because, we thought the Lord gaue me the first Son I lost on sea, in this agayne, & hence gaue him his brothers name; & so the mother growing strong the child began to grow weake, & I did veryly thinke would haue dyed of a sore mouth; which I taking to hart, the Lord awakened me in the night & stirred me vp to pray for him & that with very much feruency as I thought; & many arguments to presse the Lord for his life came in as:

    1: The glory the Lord should haue by betrusting me with this child, he should be the Lords for euer. [5]

    2: because this kindnes would be to me fruit in season, if in the time of my priuacy psecution sorrow for the losse of my first child he would giue me this & that other in this:

    3: because though it was brought very low yet then was the Lords time to remember to helpe:

    4: because I thought if the Lord should not heare me now, my soule would be discouraged from seeking to him because I sought for the first & could not preuayle for his life, & this was sore if the Lord should not heare me for this;

    5: because all healing vertue was in Xt Jesus hands who was very tender to all that brought there sick vnto him;

    6: although my sins might hinder him from doing this yet I told the Lord his mercy should be the more woonderfull if in healing my child of his sicknes he would with all heale me of my sins; & thus after a sad heauy night the Lord shined vpon me in the morning, for I found him suddenly & strangly amended of his sore mouth which I did expect would haue bin his death; oh the tendernes of our god remember therefore my son this mercy of the Lord to thee; thus the child with the mother hauing recouerd there [6] strength, we set a second time to sea & when we went the child was so feeble that diuerse of or freinds did conclude the child could [not]563 liue vntill it came to New England in a close ship; but the care of god was so great that it was made much better by the sea & more liuely & strong; & in this voyage it & all of vs were in danger to be drowned by a most terrible leake, which the Lord stopt for vs; another danger in the ship that the Lord deliuerd it from was this; the ship in a storme tumbling suddenly on the on side my wife hauing the child in her armes was almost pitcht with her head & child in her armes agaynst a post in the ship & being ready to fall shee felt her selfe pluckt back by shee knew not what; wherby shee & the child were agayne preserud & I cannot ascribe this to any other but the angells of god who are ministring spirits for the heires of life; & thus after a 11 weekes sayle from old England we came to New England shore; where the mother fell sick of a consumption & thou my child wert put to nurse; to on good wife Hopkins who was very tender of thee; & after we had [7] bin here diuerse weekes, on the 7 of February or there about god gaue thee the ordinance of baptisme;564 wherby god is become thy god, & is before hand with thee that when euer thou shalt returne to god, he will vndoubtedly receiue thee; & this is a most high & happy priuiledge; & therefore blesse god for it: & now after that; this had bin done; thy deare mother dyed in the Lord; deꝑting out of this woorld to another, who did loose her life by being carefull to preserue thine; for in the ship thou wert so feeble & froward both in the day & night, that hereby shee lost her strength & at last her life, shee hath made also many a prayer & shed many a teare in secret for thee; & this hath bin oft her request that if the Lord did not intend to glorify himselfe by thee that he would cut thee off by death rather then to liue to dishonour him by sin; & therefore know it if thou shalt turne rebell agaynst god & forsake god & care not for the knowledge of him nor to beleeue in his son; the Lord will make all these mercys woes & all thy mothers prayers teares & death to be a swift witnesse agaynst thee at the great day. [8]

    Thus the Lord taking away thy deare mothers life, the Lord takes care for thee, & preserued thee in health vntill the spring, May. 1. 1636: & now the hand of the Lord was stretcht out agaynst my child; so that he had for diuerse weekes a sore mouth both within & without cheeks & lips full of blisters so as that he could eat no meat, only suck the breast; by which only he liued a long time which I did thinke would haue bin its death agayne; but the Lord being sought vnto recouerd him agayne, & then the humour fell into his eyes; which grew so sore that partly by the humour & ꝑtly by the ill handling & applying medicines to them, his eyes grew starke blind with pearles vpon both eyes & a white filme; insomuch as it was a most dreadfull sight vnto all beholders of him & very pittiful which was such a misery that me thought now I had rather that the Lord would take away my child by death then let it liue a blind & a miserable life; but the Lord saw my sorrowes my tears my [9] poore prayers which were in bitternes for him; & after that I had concluded I must haue a blind child to be a constant sorrow to me till my death & was made to be contented to beare the indignatiō of the Lord because I had sinned resoluing now to feare nor care nor greeue no more, but to be thaakfull nay to loue the Lords will; presently I say vpon this, by a poore weake meanes, vizt the oyle of white pasec565 the Lord restored my child to his sight suddenly & strangely I may almost say miraculously agayne; which was no small joy to me & no little encouragement to doe the Lords woorke that tooke so much care for me & mine; now consider my son of this great care of god for thee & remember to lift vp thy eyes to heauen to god in euerlasting prayses of him & dependance vpon him, & take heed thou dost not make thy eyes windowes of lust; but giue thy eyes nay thy hart & whole soule & body to him that hath bin so carefull of thee when thou couldst not care for thy selfe; [10]566

    T. {My Birth & Life.} S:

    In the yeare of Christ 1604:567 vpon the 5 day of Nouember, called the Powder treason day, & that very houre of the day wherin the Parlament should haue bin blown vp by Popish preists; I was then borne; which occasioned my father to giue me this name Thomas, because he sayd I would hardly beleeue that euer any such wickednes should be attempted by men agaynst so religious & good Parlament; my fathers name was William Shepard borne in a little poore town in Northampton shire called Fossecut, neare Towcester & being a prentice to on mr Bland a groser, he marryed on of his daughters of whom he begat many children; 3 sons John, William & Thomas, & 6 daughters; An Margaret Mary, Elizabeth Hester Sarah, of all which only John Thomas568 Anna & Margaret are still liuing in the Town where I was borne viz. Towcester in Northampton shire 6 miles distant from the town of Northampton in old England: I do well remember my father & haue some little remembrance of [11] my mother; my Father was a wise prudent man the peace maker of the place; & toward his latter end much blessed of god in his estate & in his soule; for there being no good ministry in the town he was resolued to goe & liue at Banbury in Oxford shire vnder a stirring ministry hauing bought a house there for that end; my mother was a woman much afflicted in conscience sometimes euen vnto to distraction of mind yet was sweetly recouered agayne before shee dyed & I being the youngest shee did beare exceeding great loue to me & made many prayers for me; but shee dyed when I was about 4: yeares old, & my father liued & marryed a second wife not dwelling in the same town, of whom he begat 2 children, Samuell & Elizabeth & dyed when I was about 10 yeares of age; but while my father & mother liued when I was about 3 yeare old there was a great plague in the [12] Town of Towcester which swept away many in my fathers family, both sisters & seruants; I being the youngest & best beloued of my mother was sent away the day the plague brake out; to liue with my aged grandfather & grandmother in Fossecut, a most blind town & corner, & those I liued with also being very well to liue yet very Ignorant, & there was I put to keepe geese & other such cuntry woorke all that time; much neglected of them; & afterward sent from them vnto Adthrop a little blind town adjoyning; to my vncle; where I had more content but did learne to sing & sport as children do in those parts & dance at there Whitson Ales;569 vntill the plague was remooued & my deare mother dead who dyed not of the Plague, but of some other disease after it; & being come home my sister An marryed to on mr Farmer, & my sister Margaret loued me much, who afterward marryed to my fathers prentice, viz: mr Waples; & my [13] Father marryed agayne; to another woman who did let me see the difference betweene my own mother & a stepmother; shee did seeme not to loue me but incensed my father often agaynst me, it may be that it was justly also for my childishnes; & hauing liued thus for a time my father sent me to Schoole to a Welch man on mr Rice who kept the Free Schoole570 in the town of Towcester but he was exceeding curst & cruell & would deale roug[h]ly with me & so discouraged me wholly from desire of learning that I remember I wished often times my selfe in any conditiō to keepe hogs or beasts rather then to goe to Schoole & learne. but my father at last was visited with sicknes hauing taken some cold vpon some pills he tooke & so had the Hickets571 with his sicknes a weeke together, in which time I do remember; I did pray very strongly & hartily for the life of my father & made some couenant if god [14] would do it to serue him the better as knowing I should be left alone if he was gone; yet the Lord tooke him away by death;572 & so I was left fatherles & motherles when I was about 10 yeares old & I was committed to my stepmother to be educated, who therefore had my portion which was a 100łi which my father left me; but shee neglecting my education very much, my brother John who was my only brother aliue; desired to haue me out of her hands & to haue me with him, & he would bring me vp, for the vse of my portion, & so at last it was granted,573 & so I liued with this my eldest brother who shewed much loue vnto me, & vnto whom I owe much for him god made to be both father & mother vnto me; & it happened that the cruell School-master dyed & another came into his roome574 to be a preacher also in the town; who was an eminent preacher in those dayes & accounted holy, but afterward turned a great Apostate & enemy to all righteousnes & I feare did commit the [15] Impardonable sin: yet it so fell out by gods good prouidence that this man stirred vp in my hart a loue & desire of the honour of learning & therefore, I told my freends I would be a Scholler; & so the Lord blessed me in my studies & gaue me some knowledge of the Latine & Greeke tongues but much vngrounded in both; but I was studious because I was ambitious of learning & being a Scholler; & hence when I could not take notes of the sermon I remember I was troubled at it & prayed the Lord earnestly that he would helpe me to note sermons; & I see cause of woondring at the Lords prouidence therein, for as soone as euer I had prayed (after my best fashion) then for it I presently the next sabboth was able to take notes who the precedent sabboth could do nothing at all that way: so I continued till I was about 15. yeares of age, & then was conceiued to be ripe for the vniuersity: & it pleased the Lord [16] to put it into my brothers hart to prouide & to seeke to prepare a place for me there; wc was done in this manner; one mr Cockerill575 fellow of Emanuell Colledge in Cambridge being a Northamptonshire man, came down into the cuntry to Northamptō & so sent for me, who vpō examinatiō of me gaue my brother incouragement to send me vp to Cambridge, & so I came vp, & tho I was very raw & yong yet it pleased god to open the harts of others to admit me into this Colledge a pensioner,576 & so mr Cockerill became my Tutour; but I doe here woonder & I hope I shall blesse the Lord for euer in heauen that the Lord did so graciously puide for me; for I haue oft thought what a wofull estate I had bin left in if the Lord had left me in that prophane ignorant town of Towcester where I was borne that the Lord should pluck me out of that sinke & Sodom who was the least in my fathers house forsaken of [17] father & mother, yet that the Lord should fetch me out from thence, by such a sweet hand.

    The first two yeares I spent in Cambridge was in studying & in mc neglect of god & priuate prayer which I had sometime vsed. & I did not regard the Lord at all vnless it were at some fits; the 3d yeare wherin I was Sophister I began to be foolish & proud & to shew my selfe in the publike Schooles;577 & there to be a disputer about things which now I see I did not know then at all but only prated about them; & toward the end of this yeare when I was most vile (after I had bin next vnto the gates of Death by the [small]578 Pox the yeare before) the Lord began to Call me home to the fellowship of his grace; wc was in this manner

    1. I doe remember that I had many good affections (but blind & vnconstant) oft cast into me since my fathers sicknes by the spirit of god wrastling [18] with me, & hence I would pray in secret & hence when I was at Cambridge I heard old Doctor Chadderton579 the master of the Colledge when I came & the first yeare I was there to heare him vpō a Sacrament day my hart was much affected but I did breake loose from the Lord agayne & halfe a yeare after I heard mr Dickinson common place in the chappell vpon those woords I will not destroy it for tens sake. Gen: 19.580 & then agayne was much affected, but I shooke this off also & fell from god to loose & lewd company to lust & pride & gaming & bowling & drinking; & yet the Lord left me not but a godly Scholler walking with me, fell to discourse about the misery of euery man out of Xt viz: that what euer they did was sin; & this did much affect me; & at another time when I did light in godly company I heard them discourse about the wrath of god, & the terrour of it & how intolerable it was wc they did present by fire how intollerable the torment of that was for a time what then would æternity be; & this did much awaken me; & I began to pray agayne; but then by loose company I came to dispute [19] in the Schooles & there to joyne to loose schollers of other colledges & was fearfully left of god & fell to drinke with them; & I dranke so much on day that I was dead drunke & that vpon a Saturday night & so was carryed from the place I had drinke at & did feast at, vnto a Schollers chamber on Basset of Christs Colledge; & knew not where I was vntill I awakened late on that sabboth & sick with my beastly carriage; & when I awakened I went from him in shame & confusion, & went out into the feelds & there spent that sabboth lying hid in the corne feelds where the Lord who might justly haue cut me off in the mids of my sin; did meet me with much sadnes of hart & troubled my soule for this & other my sins which then I had cause & leysure to thinke of: & now when I was woorst he began to be best vnto me & made me resolue to set vpon a course of dayly meditation about the euill of sin & my own wayes; yet although I was [20] troubled for this sin I did not know my sinfull nature all this while

    2. The Lord therefore sent Doctor Preston581 to be master of the Colledge; & mr Ston582 & others commending his preaching to be most spirituall & excellent, I began to listen vnto what he sayd, & the first sermon he preached was Rom: 12: be renewed in the spirit of your mind; in opening which point viz: the change of hart in a Christian, the Lord so bored my eares as that I vnderstood what he spake & the secrets of my soule were Iayd vpon before me the hypocrisy of all my good things I thought I had in me; as if on had told him of all that euer I did of all the turnings & deceeipts of my hart insomuch as that I thought he was the most searching preacher in the woorld. & I began to loue him much, & to blesse god I did see my frame & my hypocrisy & selfe & secret sins; although I found a hard hart & could not be affected with them.

    3: I did therefore set more constantly (viz: 1624. May. 3.) vpon the woorke of dayly meditation [21] sometimes euery morning, but constantly euery euening before Supper, & my cheefe meditation was about the euill of sin the terrour of gods wrath, day of death bewty of Christ the deceiptfulnes of the hart; &c. but principally I found this my misery. sin was not my greatest euill, did ly light vpō me as yet, yet I was mc afrayd of death & the flames of gods wrath; & this I remember I neuer went out to meditate in the feelds, but I did find the Lord teaching me somewhat of my selfe or himselfe or the vanity of the woorld I neuer saw before; & hence I tooke out a little booke I haue euery day into the feelds & writ down what god taught me least I should forget them & so the Lord encouraged me & I grew much; but in my obseruation of my selfe, I did see my Atheisme I questiond whether there were a god & my vnbeleefe whether Xt was the Messiah whether the Scriptures were gods woord or noe; I felt [22] all manner of temptations to all kind of religions not knowing which I should choose; whether Education might not make mee beleeue what I had beleeued, & whether if I had bin educated vp among the Papists I should not haue bin as verily ꝑswaded that

    Popery is the truth, or Turcisme is the truth & at last I heard of Grindleton583 & I did question whether that glorious estate of ꝑfection might not be the truth, & whether old mr Rogers584 7 Treatises & the Practise of Xtianity the booke which did first woorke vpon my hart whether these men were not all Legall men & there bookes so but the Lord deliuered me at last from them; & in the conclusiō after many prayers meditations duties the Lord let me see 3 mayne wounds in my soule 1. I could not feele sin as my greatest euill; 2. I could do nothing but I did seeke myselfe in it [23] & was imprisoned there & tho I desired to be a preacher yet it was honour I did looke too like a vile wretch in the vse of gods gifts I desired to haue, 3 I felt a depth of Atheisme & unbeleefe in the maine matters of saluatiō & whether the Scriptures were gods woord: these things did much trouble me & in the conclusiō did so far trouble me that I could not read the scriptures or heare them read without secret & hellish blasphemy calling all into question; & all Xts miracles, & herevpon I fell to doubt whether I had not committed the impardonable sin; & because I did question whether Xt did not cast out deuills from Beelzebub &c I did thinke & feare I had & now the terrours of god began to breake in lik floods of fire into my soule for 3 quarters of a yeare this temptatiō did last, & I had some strong temptations to run my head agaynst walls & braine [24] & kill my selfe; & so I did see as I thought gods eternall reprobatiō of me a fruit of which was this dereliction to these doubts & darknes & I did see god like a Consuming fire & an euerlasting burning & my selfe like a poore prisoner leading to that fire, & the thought of æternall reprobation & torment did amaze my spirits especially at on time vpō a sabboth day at euening, & when I knew not what to do (for I went to no Xtian & was a shamed to speake of these things) it came to my mind that I should do as Xt when he was in an agony he prayed earnestly, & so I fell down to prayer & being in prayer I saw my selfe so vnholy & god so holy that my spirits began to sinke yet the Lord recouered me & powred out a spirit of prayer vpō me for free mercy & pitty, & in the conclusiō of the prayer I found the Lord helping me to see my vnwoorthines of any mercy & that I was woorthy to be cast out of his sight & to leaue my selfe with him to do with me what he would, & there & neuer [25] vntill then I found rest, & so my hart was humbled & cast down & I went with a stayed hart vnto supper late that night & so rested here; & the terrours of the Lord began to asswage sweetly: yet when these were gone I felt my sencelesnes of sin & bondage to selfe; & vnconstancy & loosing what the Lord had wrought; & my hartlesnes to any good & loathing of gods wayes wherevpō walking in the feelds the Lord dropt this meditation into me, be not discouraged therefore because thou art so vile, but make this double vse of it; 1: loath thy selfe the more, 2. feele a greater need & put a greater price vpō Jesus Christ who only can redeeme thee, from all sin, & this I found of woonderfull vse to me in all my course wherby I was kept from sinkings of hart & did beat Satan as it were with his own weapons; & I saw Xt teaching me this before any man [26] preached any such thing vnto me; & so the Lord did helpe me to loath my selfe in some measure & to say oft why shall I seeke the glory & good of my selfe who am the greatest enemy worse then the deuill can be, agaynst my selfe, which selfe ruines me, & blinds me &c. & thus god kept my hart exercised & here I began to forsake my loose company wholly & to do what I could to woorke vpon the harts of other Schollers, & to humble them & to come into a way of holy walking in or speeches & otherwise; but yet I had no assurance Xt was mine

    4: The Lord therefore brought Dr Preston to preach vpon that text. 1. Cor: 1. 30. Xt is made vnto vs wisdom righteous: sanctif: & redemptiō; & when he had opened how all the good I had all the redemptiō I had it was from Jesus Xt, I did then begin to prize him & he became very sweet vnto me, although I had heard [27] many a time Xt freely offred by his ministry if I would come in, & receiue him as Lord & Sauiour & husband; but I found my hart euer vnwilling to accept of Xt vpon these tearmes, I found them impossible for me to keepe that condition; & Xt was not so sweet as my lust but now the Lord made himselfe sweet to me & to embrace him & to giue vp my selfe vnto him; but yet after this I had many feares & doubts,

    5. I found therefore the Lord reuealing free mercy & that all my helpe was in that to giue me Xt & to enable me to beleeue in Xt & accept of him, & here I did rest; 6.585 the Lord also letting me see my own constant vilenes in euery thing; put me to this questiō why did the Lord Jesus keepe the Law had no guile in his hart had no vnbrokennes but holines there; was it not for ym yt did want it, & here I saw Xt Jesus righteousnes for a poore sinners vngodlines but yet question[in]g [28] whether euer the Lord would apply this & giue this vnto me

    7: the Lord md me see that so many as receiue him he giues power to be the sons of god John: 1: 12: & I saw the Lord gaue me a hart to receiue Xt with a naked hand euen naked Xt, & so the Ld gaue me peace;

    And thus I continued till I was 6 yeares standing, & then went halfe a yeare before I was master of Arts to mr Welds586 house at Tarling in Essex where I enjoyed the blessing of his & mr Hookers587 ministry at Chelmesfoord; but before I came there I was very solicitous what would become of me when I was master of Arts, for then my time & portion would be spent but when I came thither & had bin there some little season vntill I was ready to be mr of Art: on Dr Wilson588 had purposed to set vp a lecture589 & giue 30łi ꝑ annū to the maintenance of it, & when I was among those woorthies in Essex where we had monethly fasts; they did ꝑpound it vnto me; to take the Lecture & to set it vp at a [29] great town in Essex called Cogshall & so mr Weld especially prest me vnto it & wished me to seeke god about it & after fasting & prayer the ministers in those parts of Essex had a day of Humiliatiō. & they did seeke the Lord for direction where to place the Lecture; & toward the euening of that day they began to consider whether I should goe to Cogshall or noe, most of the ministers were for it because it was a great town & they did not know any place did desire it but they; mr Hooker only did object agaynst my going thither for being but yong & vnexperienced & there being an old yet sly & malicious minister in the town who did seeme to giue way to it to haue it there, did therefore say it was dangerous & vncomfortable for little birds to build vnder the nests of old rauens & kites, but while they were thus debating it, the town of Earles-Colne; being 3 mile off from Essex, hearing that there was such a lecture to be giuen freely, & considering that [30] the lecture might enrich that poore town, they did therefore just at this time of the day come to the place where the ministers met viz: at Tarling in Essex & desired that it might be setled there for 3 yeares590 (for no longer was it to continue in any place, because it was conceiued if any good was done it would be with in such a time & then if it went away frō them the people in a populous town would be glad to maintayne the man themselues; or if no good was done, it was pitty they should haue it any longer:) & when they thus came for it the ministers with on joynt consent aduised me to accept of the peoples call; & to stay among them if I found vpō my preaching a little season with them that they still continued in there desires for my continuance there: & thus I who was so yong so weake & vnexperienced & vnfit for so great a woorke was called out by 12 or 16. ministers of Xt to the woorke which did much encourage my hart & for the Lords goodnes herein I shall I hope neuer forget his loue.

    [31] for I might have bin cast away vpon a blind place without the helpe of any ministry about me. I might have bin sent to some gentlemans house to haue bin corrupted with the sins in it: but this I haue found, the Lord was not content to take me from on Town to another, but from the woorst town I thinke in the woorld, to the best place for knowledge & learning, viz: to Cambridge, & there the Lord was not content to giue me good meanes, but the best meanes & ministry & helpe of priuate Xtians; for Dr Preston & mr Goodwin591 were the most able men for preaching Xt in this latter age; & when I came from thence the Lord sent me to the best cuntry in England viz: to Essex & set me in the mids of the best ministry in the cuntry by whose monethly fasts & conferences I found much of god; & thus the Lord Jesus prouided for me of all things of the best; [32]

    So being resolued to goe vnto Earles-Colne in Essex, after my commencing mr of Arts & my sinfull taking of orders about a fortnight after of the Bishop of Peterborow, viz. B. Doue:592 I came to the town; & boarded in mr Cosins his house an aged but godly & chearfull Xtian & Schoolmaster in the town: & by whose society I was much refreshed there being not on man else in all the town that had any godlines but him that I could vnderstand: so hauing preached vpon the sabboth day out of 2. Cor: 5: 19: all the town gaue me a call & set to there hands in writing & so I saw god would haue me to be there; but how to be there & continue there I could not tell; yet I sinfully got a license to officiate the cure of the Bishop of Londons register before my name was known & by vertue of that I had much helpe; but when I had been there awhile & the Lord had blessed my labours to diuerse in & out of the town especially to the cheefe house in the Town the Priory593 [33] to mr Harlakendens children where the Lord wrought mightily vpō his eldest son mr Richard (now dwelling there) & afterward on mr Roger who came ouer with me to N. England & dyed here, Satan then began to rage & the commissaries registers & others began to pursue me & to threaten me, as thinking I was a Nonconformable man (when for the most of that time I was not resolued either way but was darke in those things) yet the Lord hauing woorke to do in this place kept me a poore ignorant thing agaynst them all vntill such time as my woorke was done; by strange & woonderfull meanes; notwithstanding all the malice of the ministers round about me; the Lord had on way or other to deliuer me; the Course I tooke in my preaching was 1: to shew the people there misery. 2 the remedy Xt Jesus. 3 how they should walke answerable to his mercy being redeemed by Xt: & so I found [34] the Lord putting foorth his strength in my extreame weaknes & not forsaking of me when I was so foolish as I haue woonderd since why the Lord hath done any good to me & by me;

    So the time of 3 yeares being expired the people would not let me goe but gathered about 40łi yearly for me; & so I was intended to stay there if the Lord would & preuayled to set vp the Lecture in the Town of Towcester where I was borne as knowing no greater loue I could expresse to my poore freends then thus; & so mr Ston (Dr Wilson giuing way thereto) had the Lecture & went to Towcester with it where the Lord was with him; & thus I saw the Lords mercy following me to make me a poore instrument of sending the gospell to the place of my nativity:

    So when I had preached a while at Earles-Colne about halfe a yeare the Lord saw me vnfit & vnwoorthy to continue me there any longer & so the Bishop of London Mountain594 being remooued to Yorke & [35] Bishop Laud (now Arch Bishop) comming in his place a feirce enemy to all righteousnes & a man fitted of god to be a scourge to his people; he presently (hauing bin not long in the place) but sent for me vp to London & there neuer asking me whether I would subscribe (as I remember) but what I had to do to preach in his Diocesse, chiding also Dr Wilson for setting vp this lecture in his Diocesse, after many rayling speeches agaynst me; forbad me to preach & not only so but if I went to preach any where else his hand would reach me: & so god put me to silence there which did somewhat humble me;595 for I did thinke it was for my sins the Lord set him thus agaynst me; yet when I was thus silenced the Lord stird me vp freends the house of the Harlakendens were so many fathers & mothers to me, & they & the people would haue me liue there tho I did nothing but stay in the place, [36] but remayning about halfe a yeare after this silencing among them the Lord let me see into the euill of the English Cseremonies Crosse Surplice & Kneeling; & the Bishop of London viz: Laud comming down to visit he cited me to appeare before him at the Court at Reldon;596 where I appearing he asked me what I did in the place; & I told him I studyed he asked me, what? I told him the fathers; he replyed I might thanke him for that, yet charged me to depart the place, I asked him whether should I go, to the vniuersity sayd he, I told him I had no meanes to subsist there; yet he charged me to depart the place; now, about this time I had great desire to change my estate by marriage; & I had bin praying 3 yeare before that the Lord would carry me to such a place where I might haue a meet yoke fellow: & I had a call at this time to goe to Yorkeshire, to preach there in a gentlemans house; but I did not desire to stir till the Bishop fired me out of this place; for the Bishop hauing thus charged me to depart, & being 2 dayes after [37] to visit at Dunmow in Essex mr Weld mr Daniell Rogers597 mr Ward598 mr Marshall,599 mr Wharton600 consulted together whether it was best to let such a swine to root up gods plants in Essex & not to giue him some check. Wherevpon it was agreed vpō priuatly at Braintry. that some should speake to him & giue him a check. So mr Weld & I trauiling together had some thoughts of going to New England but we did thinke it best to goe first vnto Ireland & preach there, & to goe by Scotland thither; but when we came to the church mr Weld stood & heard without (being excommunicated by him) I being more free went within & after sermon mr Weld went vp to heare the Bishops speech & being seene to follow the Bishop the first thing he did was to examine mr Weld what he did to follow him & to stand vpō holy ground; therevpō [38] he was committed to the Purseuant & bound ouer to answer it at the high Commission but when mr Weld was pleading for himself & that it was ignorance that made him come in; the Bishop asked him whether he intended to goe whether to N. England, & if so whether I would goe with him while he was thus speaking I came into the crowd, & heard the woords, others bid me goe away but neglecting to do it a godly man puld me away with violence out of the crowd; & as soone as euer I was gone the Apparitor calls for mr Shepard & the Purseuant was sent presently after to find me out; but he that puld me away (mr Holbeech601 by name a Schoolmaster at Felsted in Essex) hastened our horses & away we rid as fast as we could; & so the Lord deliuered me out of the hand of that Lyon a third time; & now I pceiued I could not stay in Colne without danger, & herevpō [39] receiuing a letter from mr Ezekiell Rogers602 then liuing at Rowly in Yorkshire, to encourage me to come to the Knights house called Sr Richard Darley dwelling at a town called Buttercrambe, & the Knights two sons viz mr Henry & mr Richard Darley pmising me 20łi a yeare for there part, & the Knight pmising me my table, & the letters sent to me crying with that voyce of the man of macedonia come & helpe vs; herevpon I resolued to follow the Lord to so remote & strange a place; the rather because, I might be far from the hearing of the malicious Bishop Laud, who had threatned me if I preached any where; So when I was determined to goe the Gentlemen sent a man to me to be my guide in my journey who comming for me with much greefe of hart I forsooke Essex & Earles-Colne & they me; going as it were now I knew not whether;

    So as we trauiled (wc was 5 or 6 dayes [40] together neare vnto Winter) the Lord sent much raine & ill wether insomuch as the floods were vp when we came neare Yorkshire & hardly passeable; at last we came to a town called Ferry-brig where the waters were vp & ran ouer the bridge for halfe a mile together & more; so we hired a guide to lead vs; but when he had gone a little way the violence of the water was such that he first fell in, & after him another man who was neare drowning before my eyes wherevpon my hart was so smitten with feare of the danger & my head so dizzyed with the running of the water; that had not the Lord immediatly vpheld me & my horse also & so guided it I had certaynly pished that bout;603 but the Lord was strong in my weaknes; & we went on by some little directiō vpō the bridge; & at last I fell in, yet in a place where the waters were not so violent but I sate vpō my horse, which being a very good horse clamberd vp vpō the bridge agayne, but mr Darleyes man for feare of [41] me fell in also but came out safe agayne & so we came to the dry land where we had a house & shifted our selues,604 & went to prayer & blest god for this woonderfull preseruatiō of vs; & the Lord made me then to pfesse that I looked now vpon my life as a new life giuen vnto me; which I saw good reason to giue vp vnto him & his seruice; & truly about this time the Lord that had dealt only gently with me before, began to afflict me & to let me tast how good it was to be vnder his tutouring; so I came to Yorke late vpon Saturday night, & hauing refresht our selues there I came to Buttercrambe to Sr Richards house that night very wet & late; wc is about 7. miles off from Yorke:

    Now as soone as I came into the house I found diuerse of them at Dice & Tables; mr Richard Darley on of the brothers [42] being to returne to London the Munday after & being desirous to heare me preach, sent me speedily to my lodging (the best in the house) & so I preached the Day after once, & then he departed; the day after hauing carefully desired my comfortable abode there; but I do remember I neuer was so low sunke in my spirit as about this time; for 1. I was now far from all freends; 2 I was I saw in a ꝑphane house not any sincerely good, 3. I was in a vile wicked town & cuntry. 4: I was vnknown & exposed to all wrongs 5. I was vnsufficient to do any woorke & my sins were vpon me; &c. & herevpō I was very low fe sunke deepe yet the Lord did not leaue me comfortles; for tho the Lady was churlish, yet Sr Richard was ingenious & I found in the house 3 Seruants viz: Tho: Fugill.605 Mris Margaret Touteuille the Knights Kinswoman that was afterward my wife, & Ruth Bushell (now marryed to Edward Michelson),606 very carefull of me; which somewhat refreshed me [43] but it hapned that when I had bin there a little while there was a marriage of on Mr Allured a most prophane yong gentleman to Sr Richards daughter;607 & I was desired to preach at there marriage; at which sermō the Lord first toucht the hart of Mris Margaret, with very great terrours for sin & her Christies estate; wherevpon others began to looke about them especially the gentlewoman lately marryed mris Allured; & the Lord brake both there harts very kindly then others in the family, viz Mr Allured he fell to fasting & prayer & great reformation; others also were reformed & there harts changed the whole family brought to externall duties; but I remember none in the town or about it brought home; & thus the Lord was with me & gaue me fauour & freends & respect of all in the family & the Lord taught me much of his goodnes & sweetnes; & when he had fitted a wife for me he then gaue me her who was a most [44] sweet humble woman full of Christ & a very discerning Xtian; a wife who was most incomparably louing to me & euery way amiable & holy & endued with a very sweet spirit of Prayer; & thus the Lord answered my desires when my aduersaries intended most hurt to me the Lord was then best vnto me & vsed me the more kindly in euery place; for the Lord turned all the sons & Sr Richard & mr Allured so vnto me that they not only gaue her freely to be my wife, but enlarged her portion also; & thus I did marry the best & fittest woman in the woorld vnto me after I had preached in this place about a 12 month;608 for which mercy to me in my exiled condition in a strange place I did pmise the Lord that this mercy should knit my hart the nearer to him & that his loue should constraine me; but I haue ill requited the Lord since that time; & forgot my selfe & my pmise also:

    But now when we were marryed [45] In the yeare 1632:609 shee was vnwilling to stay at Buttercrambe & I saw no meanes or likely-hood of abode there for Bishop Neale610 comming vp to Yorke; no freends could pcure my liberty of him without subscription; & herevpo the Lord gaue me a call to Northumberland, to a town called Heddon 5 mile beyond Newcastle, wc when I had considered of & saw no place but that to goe vnto, & saw the people very desirous of it & that I might preach there in peace being far from any Bishops, I did resolue to depart thither & so being accompanied wt mr Allured to the place I came not wt out many feares of enemies & my poore wife full of feares it was not a place of subsistance wt any comfort to me there; but the good Lord who all my life followed me; made this place the fittest for me & I found many sweet freends & Xtian acquaintance, Mris Sherbourne maintaining me & mris Fenwick [46] lending vs the vse of her house & so god comforted vs in or solitary & yet maryed conditiō many wayes; Now when I was here the Lord blest my poore labours both to the Saynts & to sundry others about & in Newcastle; & I came here to read & know more of the Cæremonies Church government & estate & the vnlawfull standing of Bishops then in any other place; I liued at mris Fenwicks house for a time about a 12 moneth or halfe a yeare & then we went & dwelt alone in a town neare Heddon called [blank] in a house wc we found haunted wt the deuill as we conceiued for when we came in to it a known witch went out of it; & being troubled with noyses 4 or 5 nights together, we sought god by prayer to remooue so sore a tryall & the Lord heard & blest vs there; & remooued the trouble; but after we were setled the Bishop put in a Preist who would not suffer me to preach publikely any more; herevpo meanes was md to the Bishop [47] of Durham; Bishop Morton611 & he professed he durst not giue me liberty because Laud had taken notice of me; so I preached vp & down in the cuntry & at last priuatly in mr Fenwicks house; & there I stayed till mr Cotton mr Hooker Ston Weld went to New England, & herevpon most of the godly in England were awakened & intended mc to goe to N. England; & I hauing a call by diuerse freends in New England to come ouer & many in old England desiring me to goe ouer & ꝑmising to goe with me; I did therevpō resolue to goe thither espetially considering the season; & thus the Lord blest me in this darke cuntry & gaue me a son called Thomas Anno. 1633: my poore wife being in sore extremities 4 dayes by reasō shee had an vnskilfull midwife; but as the affliction was very bitter so the Lord did [48] teach me much by it & I had need of it for I began to grow secretly proud & full of sensuallity delighting my soule in my deare wife more then in my god whō I had ꝑmised better vnto; & my spirit grew feirce in some things, & secretly mindles of the soules of the people; but the Lord by this affliction of my wife learnt me to desire to feare him more, & to keepe his dread in my hart; & so seeing I had bin tossed from the South to the North of England & now could goe no further; I then began to listen to a call to New England.

    The reasons we swayed me to come to N.E: were many; 1 I saw no call to any other place in old England nor way of subsistence in peace & comfort to me & my family; 2: diuerse people in old England of my deare freends desired me to goe to N: E: there to liue together & some went before & writ to me of ꝑuiding a place for a company of vs, on of which was John Bridge;612 & I saw diuerse families of my Xtian freends [49] who were resolued thither to goe wt me; 3: I saw the Lord depting frō England wn mr Hooker & mr Cotton were gone, & I saw the harts of most of the godly set & bent that way & I did thinke I should feele many miseries if I stayd behind, 4: my judgement was then conuinced not only of the euill of Cæremonies but of mixt communion & joyning with such in sacraments tho I euer judged it Lawfull to joyne with them in preaching, 5: I saw it my duty to desire the fruitiō of all gods ordinances, wc I could not enjoy in old England; 6: my deare wife did much long to see me setled there in peace & so put me on to it; 7: although it was true I should stay & suffer for Xt yet I saw no rule for it now the Lord had opened a doore of escape; otherwise I did incline much to stay & suffer especially after or sea stormes; 8: tho my ends were mixt & I looked mc to my own quiet, yet the Lord let me see the glory of those Liberties in N: England [50] & made me purpose if euer I should come ouer to liue among gods people as on come out from the dead, to his prayse; tho since I haue seene as the Lords goodnes so my own exceeding weaknes to be as good as I thought to haue bin: & although they did desire me to stay in the North & preach priuatly, yet 1. I saw that this time could not be long wtout trouble from King Charles; 2 I saw no reasō to spend my time priuatly when I might possibly exercise my talent publikely in N: E: 3 I did hope my going ouer might make them to follow me. 4 I considered how sad a thing it would be for me to leaue my wife & child, (if I should dy) in that rude place of the North where was nothing but barbarous wickednes generally & how sweet it would be to leaue them among gods people tho poore; 5 my liberty in priuate was dayly threatned; & I thought it wisdom to depart before the Purseuants came out [51] for so I might depart with more peace, & lesse trouble & danger to me & my freends; & I knew not whether god would haue me to hazard my ꝑson & comfort of me & all mine, for a disorderly manner of preaching priuatly (as it was reputed) in those parts; so after I had preached my farewell sermon at Newcastle, I departed from the North in a ship laden with Coles, for Ipswich, about the beginn[in]g of June, after I had bin about a yeare in the North the Lord hauing blest some few sermons & notes to diuerse in Newcastle; from whom I parted filled with there loue; & so the Lord gaue vs a speedy voyage from thence to Ipswich in old England; whether I came in a disguised manner with my wife & child & mayd; & stayed a while at M Russells613 house another while at mr Collins614 his house & then went down to Essex to the town where I had preached, viz. Earles-Colne to [52] mr Richard Harlakendens house where I liued priuatly but with mc loue from them all; as also from mr Joseph Cooke;615 & also with freends at Londō & Northampton shire; & truly I found this time of my life wherin I was so tossed vp & down & had no place of setling, but kept secret in regard of the Bishops the most vncomfortable & fruitles time to my own soule especially that euer I had in my life; & therefore I did long to be in N: E: as soone as might be; & the rather because my wife hauing weaned her first son Thomas had conceiued agayne & was breeding; & I knew no place in England where shee could Ly in, without discouery of my selfe, danger to my selfe & all my freends that should receiue me; & where we could not but giue offense to many if I should haue my child not baptized: & therefore there being diuerse godly Xtians resolued to goe toward the latter end of the yeare; if I would goe, I did therefore resolue to goe that [53] yeare the end of that summer I came from the North: & the time appointed for the ship to goe out was about a moneth or fortnight before Michaelmas (as they here call it) the Ship was called the Hope of Ipswich, the master of it (a very able seaman) was Mr Gurling who ꝑfessed much loue to me, who had got this Ship of 400 tun from the Danes & as some report it was by some fraud: but he denyed it, & being a man very louing & full of fayre ꝑmises of going at the time appointed, and an able seaman hence we resolued to aduenture that time tho dangerous in regard of the approaching winter.

    Now here the Lords woonderfull terrour & mercy to vs did appeare;

    For being come to Ipswich wt my family at the time appointed the ship was not ready & we stayed 6. or 8 weekes longer then the time ꝑmised for her [54] going;616 & so it was very late in the yeare & very dangerous to goe to sea, & indeed if we had gone doubtles we had all ꝑished vpō the seas it being so extreame cold & tempestuous winter; but yet we could not goe back when we had gone so far; & the Lord saw it good to chastise vs for rushing onward too soone; & hazarding or selues in that manner & I had many feares & much darknes (I remember) ouerspread my soule, doubting of our way yet I say we could not now goe back: only I learnt from that time neuer to goe about a sad businesse in the darke, vnles gods call within as well as that without be very strong & cleare & comfortable; so that in the yeare 1634: about the beginn[in]g of the winter, we set sayle from Harwich; & hauing gone some few leagues on to the sea; the wind stopt vs that night & so we cast anchor in a dangerous place: & on the morning the wind grew feirce & rough agaynst vs full, & draue vs toward the sands, but the vessell being laden too heauy [55] at the head would not stir for all that wc the seamen could doe, but draue vs full vpō the sands, neare Harwich harbour; & the ship did grate vpō the sands, & was in great danger; but the Lord directed on man to cut some cable or rope in the ship & so shee was turned about & was beaten quite backward toward Yarmouth, quite out of or way; but while the ship was in this great danger a woonderfull miraculous puidence did appeare to vs; for on of the seamen that he might saue the vessell fell in, when it was in that danger & so was carryed out a mile or more from the ship; & giuen for dead & gone; the ship was then in such danger that none could attend to follow him; & when it was out of the danger it was a very great hazard to the liues of any that should take the skiph to seeke to find him; yet it pleased the Lord that being discerned afar off floating vpo the waters; 3 of the seamen aduentured out vpō the rough waters & at last about an houre after he fell into the sea (as we conjectured) they came & found him floating vpō the waters, neuer able to [56] swim, but supported by a diuine hand all this while; when the men came to him they were glad to find him but concluded he was dead, & so got him into the skiph, & when he was there tumbled him down as on dead; yet on of them sayd to the rest let vs vse what meanes we can if there be life to preserue it, & therevpō turned his head downward for the water to run out, & hauing done so, the fellow began to gaspe & breath then they applyed other meanes they had; & so he began at last to mooue & then to speake, & by that time he came to the ship he was prety well & able to walke: & so the Lord shewed vs his great power, wherevpō a godly man in the ship then sayd; this mans danger & deliuerance is a type of ours, for he did feare dangers were neare vntō vs, & that yet the Lords power should be shewn in sauing of vs; for so indeed it was; for the wind did driue vs quite backward out of our way & gaue vs no place to anchor at vntill we came vnto Yarmouth rodes; an open place at sea yet fit for anchorage; but otherwise a very dangerous place; & so we came thither thorow many vncomfortable hazards within 30 houres, & cast anchor in Yarmouth rodes [57] which when we had done vpō a saturday morning, the Lord sent a most dreadfull & terrible storme of wind from the West, so dreadfull that to this day the seamen call it Windy Saturday; that it also scattered many ships in diuerse coasts at that time & diuerse ships were cast away, on among the rest wc was the seamans ship who came with vs from N. Castell was cast away & he & all his men pished; but when the wind thus arose the master cast all his anchors, but the storme was so terrible that the anchors broke & the ship draue toward the sands where we could not but be cast away, wherevpo the master cries out that we were dead men & therevpō the whole company goe to prayer; but the vessell still draue so neare to the sands; that the master shot off 2 peeces of ordnance to the town for helpe to saue the passengers; the town ꝑceiued it & 1000ds came vpō the walls of Yarmouth & looked vpon vs hearing we were New England men [58] & pittyed much & gaue vs for gone because they saw other ships ꝑishing neare vnto vs at that time; but could not send any helpe vnto vs, tho much mony was offred by some to hazard themselues, for vs; so the master not knowing what to do; it pleased the Lord that there was on Mr Cock a drunken fellow but no seaman, yet on that had bin at sea often & would come in a humour vnto New England, with vs; whether it was to see the cuntry or no I cannot tell; but sure I am god intended it for good vnto vs to make him an instrument to saue all or liues; for he pswaded the master to cut down his mainemast; the master was vnwilling to [do] it, & besotted not sensible of ours & his own losse; at last this Cock calls for hatchets tells the master if yow be a man saue the liues of your passengers, cut down your maine mast; herevpō he encouraged all the company who were forlorne & hopeles of life; & the seamen presently cut down the mast aboard, just at that very time [59] wherein we all gaue or selues for gone to see neither old nor New England nor faces of freends any more, there being neare vpō 200 passengers in the ship, & so when the mast was down, the master had on little anchor left; & cast it out, but the ship was driuen away toward the sands still & the seamen came to vs & bid vs looke (pointing to the place) where our graues should shortly be; conceiuing also that the wind had broke off this anchor also; so the master [60] ꝑfessed he had done what he could & therefore now desired vs to goe to prayer, so mr Norton617 in on place & my selfe in another ꝑt of the ship; he with the passengers & my selfe with the mariners, aboue decks went to prayer & committed or soules & bodies vnto the Lord that gaue them; immediatly after prayer the wind began to abate, & the ship stayd, for the last anchor was not broke (as we conceiued) but only rent vp with the wind & so draue & was drawn along plowing the sands with the violence of the wind; which abating after prayer (tho still very terrible), the [61] ship was stopt just when it was ready to be swallowed vp of the sands, a very little way off from it; & so we rid it out, yet not without feare of or liues tho the anchor stopt the ship;618 because the cable was let out so far that a little rope held the cable, & the cable the little anchor & the little anchor the great ship in this great storme; but when on of the company pceiued that we were so strangely preserued; had these woords, that threed we hang by will saue vs; for so we accounted of the rope fastned to the anchor [62]

    In comparisō of the feirce storme; & so indeed it did, the Lord shewing his dreadfull power toward vs, & yet his vnspeakeable rich mercy to vs, who in depths of mercy heard nay helped vs where we could not cry thorow the disconsolate feares, we had, out of these depths of seas & miseries: this deliuerance was so great that I then did thinke if euer the Lord did bring me to shore agayne I should liue like on come & risen from the dead; this is on of those liuing mercies the Lord hath shewn me, a mercy to my selfe, to my wife & child then Iiuing, & to my second son Thomas who was in this storme but in the woombe of his deare mother who might then have pished & bin cut off from all hope of meanes & mercy; & vnto my deare freends then with me; viz: brother Champney619 Frost Goff.620 & diuerse others most deare Saynts; & also to all with me. & how would the name of the Lord suffred if we had so ꝑished [63] that the Lord Jesus should haue respect to me so vile & on at that time full of many temptations & weaknesses, amazed much & deeply afrayd of gods terrour, yet supported; I desire this mercy may be remembred of my children & there childrens children when I am dead & cannot prayse the Lord in the land of the liuing any more; & so we continued that night, many sick many weake & discouraged, many sad harts; yet vpō the sabboth morning we departed & went out of the ship; I feare a little too soone for we should haue spent that day in praysing of him; yet we were afrayd of neglecting a seasō of ꝑuidence in going out while we had a calme; & many sick folke were unfit for that woorke & had need of refreshing at shore; So vpō the sabboth day morning boats came to or vessell from the town; & so my deare wife & child went in the first boat; but here the Lord [64] saw that these waters were not sufficient to wash away my filth & sinfulnes & therefore he cast me into the fire as soone as euer I was vpō the sea in the boat for there my first borne child very precious to my soule & dearly beloued of me was smitten with sicknes, the Lord sent a vomiting vpō it wherby it grew faint, & nothing that we could vse could stop its vomiting altho we had many helpes at Yarmouth & this was a very bitter affliction to me, & the Lord now shewd me my weake fayth want of feare pride carnall content immoderate loue of creatures, & of my child especially, & begot in me some desires & purposes to feare his name; but yet the Lord would not be intreated for the life of it & after a fortnights sicknes at last it gaue vp the ghost when its mother had giuen it vp to the Lord; & was buried at Yarmouth; where I durst not be present least the Purseuants should apprehend me & I should be discouered wc was a great afflictiō & very bitter to me & my deare [65] wife; & hereby I saw the Lord did come neare to me & I did verily feare the Lord would take away my Wife also if not my selfe not long after; & these afflictions together wt the Lords crossing vs & being so directly agaynst our voyage made me secretly willing to stay & suffer in England & my hart was not so much toward N. E: yet this satisfied me that seeing there was a dore opened of escape why should I suffer; & I considered how vnfit I was to goe to such a good land wt such an vnmortified hard darke formall hypocriticall hart & therefore no woonder if the Lord did thus crosse me; & the Lord made me feare my afflictiō came in ꝑt for runn[in]g too far in a way of separatiō frō the mixt Assemblies in England: tho I blesse god I haue euer beleeued that there are true churches in many parishes in England where the Lord sets vp able men & ministers of his gospell: & I [66] haue abhorred to refuse to heare any able minister in England;

    So that now I hauing buried my first borne & being in great sadnes & not knowing where to goe, nor wt to doe the Lord sent Mr Roger Harlakenden & my brother Samuell Shepard to visit me after they had heard of or escape at sea, who much refreshed vs; & claue to me in my sorrowes; & being casting about where to goe & liue; Mr Bridge621 then minister in Norwich sent for me to come & liue with him & being come; on Mris Corbet who liued 5 miles off Norwich an aged eminent godly gentlewomā hearing of my comming & that by being wt mr Bridge might hazard his liberty by countenancing of me, shee did therefore freely offer to me a great house of hers standing empty at a town called Bastwick & there the Lord stird vp her hart to shew all loue to me wc did much lighten & sweeten my sorrowes; & I saw the Lord Jesus care herein to me & saw cause of trusting [67] him in times of straits, who set me in such a place where I liued for halfe a yeare all the winter long among & wt my freends (mr Harlakenden dwelling wt me & bearing all the charge of housekeeping) & far from the notice of my enemies, where we enjoyed sweet fellowship on wt another & also wt god, in a house wc was fit to entertayne any Prince, for fairenes greatnes & pleasantnes; here the Lord hid vs all the winter long & when it was fit to trauayle in the Spring we went vp to London; Mr Harlakenden not forsaking me all this while, for he was a father & mother to me; & when we came to London to mris Sherborne, not knowing wt to doe, nor where to liue priuatly; the Lord prouided a very priuate place for vs; where my wife was brought to bed & deliuered of my second son Thomas & none but or freends did know of it; & so by this meanes [68] my son was not baptized vntill we came to New England, the winter following; being borne in London: Aprill: 5: 1635: on remarkeable deliuerance my wife had when we were comming vp to Londō mr Burrowes the minister kindly entertayned vs about a fortnight in the way, & when my wife was there, being great wt child, shee fell down frō the top of a paire of stayres to the bottom; yet the Lord kept her, & the child also safe frō that deadly danger When we had bin also at Londō for a time & began to be known in the place my wife was brought to bed; the Lord put it into or harts to remooue to another place in mr Eldreds house in London wc stood empty & the very night we were all come away then came the Purseuants & others to search after vs, but the Lord deliuered vs out of there hands; & so wn the Ld had recouered my wife; we began to prepare for a remoouall once agayne to N: England; [69]

    And the Ld seemed to make or way playne

    1 bee: I had no other call to any place in England

    2: many more of gods people resolued to goe wt me as mr Roger Harlakenden & mr Champney &c.

    3: the Lord saw or vnfitnes & the vnfitnes of our going the yeare before; & therefore giuing vs good freends to accompany vs & good company in the ship, we set forward, about the 10: of August 1635: with my selfe wife & my little son Thomas & other precious freends;622 hauing tasted much of gods mercy in England, & lamenting the losse of or natiue cuntry when we tooke or last view of it; In or voyage vpon the sea the Lord was very tender of me & kept me frō the violence of sea sicknes; in or comming we were refreshed wt the society of mr Wilson623 mr Jones624 by yr fayth & prayers & preaching; the Ship we came in was very rotten & vnfit for such a voyage & therefore the first storme we had; we had a very great leake wc did much apall & affect vs; yet the Lord discouered it vnto vs, when we were thinking of returning back agayne; & much comforted or harts we had many stormes, in on of which my deare wife tooke such a cold [70] & got such weaknes as that shee fell into a consumptiō of wc shee afterward dyed; & also the Ld preserued her wt the child in her armes frō eminent & apparent death; for by the shaking of the ship in a violent storme her head was pitcht agaynst an iron bolt & the Lord miraculously preserued the child & recouered my wife; this was a great afflictiō to me; & was a cause of many sad thoughts in the ship how to behaue my selfe when I came to N: England: my resolutions I haue written down in my little booke; & so the Lord after many sad stormes & wearisom dayes & many longings to see the shore the Lord brought vs to the sight of it vpō October 2: Anno: 1635: & vpō october the 3d we arriued with my wife child brother Samuell mr Harlakenden mr Cookes &c at Boston wt rejoycing in or god after a longsom voyage, my deare wiues great desire being now fulfilled wc was to leaue me in safety from the hand of my enemies & among gods people; & also the child vnder gods precious ordinances;

    Now when we came vpō shore we were kindly saluted & entertayned by many freends & were the first 3 dayes in [71] the house of mr Cottingtō625 being treasurer at that time; & that wt much loue;

    When we had bin here 2 dayes vpō the munday Oct: 5: we came (being sent for by freends at Newtown) to them to my brother mr Stons house; & that congregatiō being vpō their remoouall to Hartfoord at Connecticut my selfe & those that came with me found many houses empty & many psons willing to sell; & hence or company bought off there houses to dwell in, vntill we should see another place fit to remooue vnto, but hauing bin here some time diuerse of our brethren did desire to sit still & not to remooue farther ꝑtly because of the fellowship of the churches ꝑtly bee: they thought there liues were short & remooualls to new plantations full of troubles, partly because they found sufficient for themselues & there company; herevpō there was a purpose to enter into church fellowship wc we did, the yeare after about the end of the winter;626 a fortnight after wc my deare wife Margaret dyed being first receiued into church fellowship, which as shee much longed for so the Lord did so sweeten it vnto her, that shee was hereby [72] exceedingly cheared & comforted wt the sence of gods loue which continued vntill her last gaspe;

    No sooner were we thus set down & entred into church fellowship; but the Lord exercised vs & the whole cuntry wt the opinions of Familists;627 begun by mris Hutchinson raysed vp to a great height by mr Vane too suddenly chosen gouernour, & maintayned too obscurely by mr Cotton. & ꝑpagated too boldly by the members of Boston & some in other churches; by meanes of which diuision by these opinions, the ancient & receiued truth came to be darkened gods name to be blasphemed, the churches glory diminished, many godly greeued many wretches hardned deceiuing & being deceiued, growing woorse & woorse; the principall opiniō & seed of all the rest was this; viz. that a Xtian should not take any euidence of gods speciall grace & loue toward him by the sight of any graces or conditionall euangelicall ꝑmises to fayth or sanctificatiō; in way of ratiocination; (for this was euidence & so a way of woorkes,) but it must be without the sight of any grace fayth holines or speciall change in himselfe. by immediat reuelatiō in an absolute ꝑmise. & because that the whole scriptures do giue such cleare plaine & notable euidences of fauour to ꝑsons called & sanctifyed; hence they [73] sayd that a second euidence might be taken from hence but no first euidence; but from hence it arose that as all errour is fruitfull so this opiniō did gender aboue a 100. monstrous opinions in the cuntry; wc the Elders ꝑceiuing hauing vsed all priuate brotherly meanes wt mr Cotton first628 & yet no healing herevpō they publikely preached both agaynst opinions publikely & priuatly maintayned; & I account it no small mercy to my selfe that the Lord kept me frō that contagion, & gaue me any hart or light to see thorow those deuises of mens heads; altho I found it a most vncomfortable time to liue in contentiō. & the Lord was graciously pleased by giuing witnesse agaynst them to keepe this poore church spotles & cleare from them; this diuisiō in the church, began to trouble the commō wealth, mr Wheelwright a man of a bold & stiff conceipt of his own woorth & light preached (as the court judged) a seditious sermon,629 stirring vp all sorts agaynst those that preached a couenant of woorkes; meaning all the Elders in the cuntry that preached justificatiō by fayth & assurance of it, by sight of fayth & sanctificatiō, being enabled thereto by the spirit: the troubles thus increasing; & all meanes vsed for crushing & curing these sorts a synod was thought of & called frō the example Acts: 15: wherin by the helpe of all [74] the Elders joyned together those errours thorow the grace & power of Xt were discouered, the defenders of them conuinced & ashamed, the truth stablished & the consciences of the sayntts setled: there being a most woonderfull presence of Xts spirit in that assembly: held at Cambridge An: 1637: about August & continued a moneth together in publike agitations,630 for the issue of this Synod was this

    1: the Pekoat Indians were fully discomfited for as the opinions arose, wars did arise & when these began to be crusht by the ministry of the Elders & by opposing mr Vane & casting him & others frō being magistrates,631 the enemies began to be crusht & were pfectly subdued by the end of the Synod.

    2: the magistrates tooke courage & exiled mr Wheelwright, mris Hutchinson, & diuerse Ilanders; whom the Lord did strangely discouer giuing most of them ouer to all manner of filthy opinions, vntill many that held with them before were ashamed of them: & so the Lord within on yeare wrought a great change among vs;

    At this time I cannot omit the goodnes of god as to my selfe so to all the cuntry in deliuering vs frō the Pekoat furies; these Indians were the stoutest proudest & most successefull in there wars of all the Indians; there cheefe Sachem was Sasakus. a proud cruell vnhapy [75] & headstrong prince, who not willing to be guided by the pswasions of his fellow an aged Sachem Momanattuck nor fearing the reuenge of the English, hauing first suckt the blood of captaine Ston & mr Oldam found it so sweet & his ꝑceedings for on whole winter so successefull that hauing beseeged & kild about 4 men that kept Seabrook fort he aduentured to fall vpon the English vp the riuer at Wethersfeed where he slew 9 or 10. men women & children at vnawares, & tooke two maids prisoners carrying them away captiue to the Pekoat cuntry herevpō those vpō the riuer first gathered about 70 men & sent them into Pekoat cuntry, to make that the seat of war, & to reuenge the death of those innocents whem they barbarously & most vnnaturally slew; these men marched two dayes & nights from the way of the Naraganset vnto Pekoat; being guided by those Indians then the ancient enemies of the Pekoats they intended to assault Sasakus Fort but falling short of it the second night the prouidence of god guided them to another [76] nearer, full of stout men & their best souldiers being as it were coopt vp there to the number of 3 or 400 in all for the diuine slaughter by the hand of the English; these therfore being all night making merry & singing the death of the English the next day, toward breake of the day being very heauy with sleepe the English drew neare within the sight of the fort, very weary with trauayle & want of sleepe, at which time 500 Naragansets fled for feare & only 2 of the company stood to it to conduct them to the fort & the dore & entrance thereof; the English being come to it awakened the fort with a peale of muskets directed into the midst of there wigwams; & after this some vndertaking to compasse the fort without some aduentured into the fort vpō the very faces of the enemy standing ready with there arrowes ready bent to shoot who euer should aduenture; but the English casting by there peeces tooke there swoords in there hands (the Lord doubling there strength & courage) & fell vpō the Indians where a hot fight continued about the space of an houre, at last by the directiō of on Captayne Mason there wigwams were set on fire wc being [77] dry & contiguous on to another was most dreadfull to the Indians, some burning some bleeding to death by the swoord some resisting till they were cut off some flying were beat down by the men without vntill the Lord had vtterly consumed the whole company except 4 or 5. girles they tooke prisoners & dealt with them at Seabrooke as they dealt with ours at Wethersfeeld,632 & tis verily thought scarce on man escaped vnles on or two to carry foorth tydings of the lamentable end of there fellowes; & of the English not on man was kild but on by the musket of an Englishman (as was conceiued) some were wounded much but all recouered & restored agayne:

    Thus the Lord hauing deliuered the cuntry from war with Indians & Familists (who arose & fell together) he was pleased to direct the harts of the magistrates (then keeping court ordinarily in or town because of ther stirs at Boston) to thinke of erecting a Schoole or Colledge, & that speedily to be a nursery of knowledge in these deserts & supply for posterity; & [78] because this town (then called Newtown) was thorow gods great care & goodnes kept spotles from the contagion of the opinions therefore at the desire of some of or town the Deputies of the court, hauing got mr Eaton633 to attend the Schoole, the court for that & sundry other reasons determined to erect the Colledge here; wc was no sooner done but the cheefe of the magistrates & Elders sent to England to desire helpe to forward this woorke, but they all neglecting vs (in a manner) the Lord put it into the hart of on mr Haruard who dyed woorth 1600ł to giue halfe his estate to the erecting of the Schoole, the man was a Scholler & pious in his life & enlarged toward the cuntry & the good of it in life & death; but no sooner was this giuen; but mr Eaton (pfessing eminently yet falsely & most deceiptfully the feare of god) did lauish out a great part of it & being for his cruelty to his schollers esply to on Biscoe as also for some other wantonnes in life, not so notoriously known driuen the cuntry;634 the Lord about a yeare after graciously made vp the breach by on mr Dunstar,635 a man pious painfull & fit to teach & very fit to lay the foundations of the domesticall affaires of the Colledge; whom god hath mc honoured & blessed;

    The sin of mr Eaton was at first not so clearly discerned by me, yet after [79] more full informatiō, I saw his sin great & my ignorance & want of wisdom & watchfulnes ouer him very great for wc I desire to mourne all my life;636 & for the breach of his family

    But thus the Lord hath bin very good vnto me, in planting the place I liued in with such a mercy to my selfe such a blessing to my children & the cuntry such an opportunity of doing good to many by doing good to students; as the schoole is;

    After this I fell sick after mr Harlakendens death my most deare freend637 & most precious seruant of Jesus Xt; & when I was very Low & my blood much corrupted the Lord reuiued me, & after that tooke pleasure in me to blesse my labours that I was not altogether vseles nor fruitles;

    And not only to speake by me to his people but likewise to print my notes vpon the 9 principles I intended to ꝑceed on with in Yorkshire but neuer intended them or imagined they should be for the presse; yet six of them being finished in old England & printed638 & the other 3. desired I finished (the lord helping) those at Cambridge & so sent them to England where they also are printed, which I [80] do not glory in (for I know my weaknes) that my name is vp by this meanes but that the Lord may be pleased to do some good by them there in my absence for I haue seene the Lord making improouement of my weake abillities as far as they could reach, & of my selfe to the vtmost, wc I desire to blesse his name for euer for;

    The yeare after those wars in the cuntry god hauing taken away my first wife the Lord gaue me a second, the eldest daughter of mr Hooker639 a blessed stock; & the Lord hath made her a great blessing to me to carry on mrs in the family with much care & wisdom, & to seeke the Lord god of her father;

    1637 Octob:

    The first child I had by her (being a son) dyed (thorow the weaknes of the midwife) before it saw the sun euen in the very birth the second (whom the Lord I blesse hath hitherto spared) viz my little Samuell is yet liuing; the third son, viz my son John after 16 weekes departed on the sabbath day morning a day of rest to the bosom of rest to him who gaue it wc was no small afflictiō & hartbreaking to me that I should puoke the Lord to strike at my innocent children for my sake;

    The Lord thus afflicting yet continud peace to the cuntry that amazing mercy wn all England & Europe are in a flame [81] the Lord hath set me & my children aside from the flames of the fires in Yorkeshire & Northumberland whence if we had not bin deliuered, I had bin in great afflictions & temptations, very weake & vnfit to be tossed vp & down & to beare violent psecution; the Lord therefore hath shewed his tendernes to me & mine in carrying me to a land of peace tho a place of tryall; where the Lord hath made the sauage Indians who conspired the death of all the English by Miantinomo vpō a sudden if Vncas could haue bin cut off first who stood in there way; & determind an open war vpō vs by the priuy suggestions of some Neutrall English on the Iland; to seeke for peace from vs vpō or own tearmes without bloodshed August. 26: 1645:640

    But the Lord hath not bin woont to let me liue long without some afflictiō or other, & yet euer mixt with some mercy, & therefore Aprill the 2d: 1646. as he gaue me another son, John. so he tooke away my most deare precious meeke & louing wife, in childbed, after 3 weekes lying in, hauing left behind her two hopefull branches my deare children, Samuell, & John: this affliction was very heauy to me, for [82] in it the Lord seemd to withdraw his tender care for me & mine, wc he graciously manifested by my deare wife; also refused to heare prayer, wn I did thinke he would haue hearkned & let me see his bewty in the land of the liuing, in restroring of her to health agayne; also in taking her away in the prime time of her life when shee might haue liued to haue glorifyed the Lord long. also in threatning me to ꝑceed in rooting out my family, & that he would not stop hauing begun here as in Ely for not being zealous enough agaynst the sins of his son; & I saw that if I had pfited by former afflictions of this nature I should not haue had this scourge; but I am the Lords, & he may doe with me what he will, he did teach me to prize a little grace gained by a crosse as a sufficient recompense for all outward losses; but this losse was very great; shee was a woman of incomparable meeknes of spirit, toward my selfe especially & very louing; of great prudence to take care for & order my family affayres being neither too lauish nor sordid in any thing so that I knew not what was vnder her hands; shee had an excellency to reprooue for sin & discerned the euills of men; shee loued gods people dearly & studious to ꝑfit by there fellowship, [83] & therefore loued there company shee loued gods woord exceedingly & hence was glad shee could read my notes wc shee had to muse on euery weeke; shee had a spirit of prayer beyond ordinary of her time & experience shee was fit to dy long before shee did dy, euen after the death of her first borne wc was a great affliction to her, but her woorke not being done then shee liued almost 9. yeares wt me & was the comfort of my life to me & the last Sacrament before her lying in seemd to be full of Xt & thereby fitted for heauen; shee did oft say shee should not outliue this child; & when her feuer first began (by taking some cold) shee told me soe, that we should loue exceedingly together because we should not liue long together; her feuer tooke away her sleepe, want of sleepe wrought mc distemp in her head, & filled it wt fantasies & distractions but wtout raging; the night before shee dyed, shee had about 6 houres vnquiet sleepe; but that so coold & setled her head, that wn shee knew none else so as to speake to them, yet shee knew Jesus Xt & could speake to him, & therefore as soone as shee awakened out of sleepe shee brake out into a most heauenly hartbreaking prayer after Xt her deare redeemer for the sp: [84] of life; & so continued praying vntill the last houre of her death: Ld tho I vnwoorthy Ld on woord on woord &c. & so gaue vp the ghost; thus god hath visited & scourged me for my sins & sought to weane me frō this woorld, but I haue euer found it a difficult thing to ꝑfit euer but a little by the sorest & sharpest afflictions;


    The material that follows is Shepard’s random notes, written by him in the manuscript containing the Autobiography. Part of them are now printed for the first time.

    An: 1639

    The good things I haue receiued of the Lord:

    1: He is the god of my being who might haue md me a woorme,

    2: he is the god of my life & length, of dayes; with health which I haue enjoyed long:

    3: he is the god who tooke me vp when my own mother dyed who loued me, & wn my stepmother cared not for me, & when lastly my father also dyed & forsooke me wn I was yong & little & could take no care for my selfe.

    4: he is the god that brought me out of Egipt, that prophane & wicked town where I was borne & bred vnder the care of on of my own brethren; & that gaue me time & will to desire learning: where if I had lyued I had sined & bin for euer damned:

    5 he is the god that brought me the last & most despised of my fathers house to the vniuersity of Cambridge & strangely made way for me there; after many prayers for it & pmises (wn I was yong) to be the Lords, if he should do that for me; tho it were by spending all the portion my father left me wc accordingly was done;

    6: he is the god that began to striue with me there as soone almost as I came thither, by mr Dickinsō & Dr Chadertons sermons; & although I oft resisted the Lord & neglected secret prayer & care of his wayes a long time & followed my bowling loose company vntill I came to that height of pride that for there sakes I was once or twise dead drunke; & liued in vnnaturall vncleanesses not to be named, & in speculatiue wantonnes, & filthines, wt all sorts of ꝑsons wc pleased my eye (yet still restraynd frō the grosse act of whoordom wc some of my own familiars were to their horrour & shame ouertaken with), yet; at this very time of being woorst & vnder wrath the Lord dealt most graciously with me, & made my last act of drunkennes the begin[nin]g of more serious thoughts of making my peace with god;

    7. he is the god that when I was thus in this place made me acquainted wt many godly freends whose liues & examples were or might haue bin patternes to me mr Ston, mr Simonds,641 whose speeches god always blest to me especially wn they described gods wrath by the fire side, so the intollerable torment of the fire; & when in walking wt on I heard him set out mens misery that all they did was sin wtout Xt. & he blessed also there counsell to me by setting me to read the practise of Xtianity which did much affect me & to heare Dr Preston.

    8. he is the god that sent I thinke the best ministers in the woorld to call me Dr Preston, & mr Goodwin, the woords of the first at the first sermon he made wn he came into the colledge as master of it & diuerse that he preached at that time did open my hart & conuince me of my vnbeleefe, & of a totall emptines of all & ennity agaynst all good; & the Lord made me honour him highly & loue him dearly althogh many godly men spake ag. him

    9: He is the god that set me not only to attend vpō the woord publikly but to priuate meditatio & prayer in which I seldom sought but found the Lord, taking me out of the woorld wn I was scoffed at for what I did. & I so found him in meditatiō that I was constraynd to carry my booke into the feelds to wright down what god powred in

    10: in these ordinances, he is the god that conuinced me of my guilt & filth of sin especially self seeking & loue of honour of men in all I did, & humbled me vnder both so as to set a higher price on Xt & grace & to loath my selfe the more & so I was eased of a woorld of discouragements; he also shewed me the woorth of Xt & md my soule satisfyed wt him & cleaue to him bee. god had made him righteousnes &c 1. Cor 1. 30. & here also reuealed his free justificatiō; & gaue me support & rest vpō & in his pmises made to them that rec: him as as Lord & King; wc I found my hart vnwilling to loue wc was the ground or rather occasiō of many horrid Temptations of Atheisme Judaisme Familisme, Popery despaire as hauing sinnd the impardonable sin; but yet the Lord at last made me yeeld vp my selfe to his condemn[in]g will as good, wc gaue me great peace & quietnes of hart thorow the blood & pitty of Xt: I haue met with all kinds of temptations but after my conuersion was neuer tempted to Arminianisme my own experience so sensibly confuting the freedō of will.

    11. He is the god wc melted my hart after a relapse frō the glorious conditiō I had in Cambridge, by taking a journey into the cuntry wt a carnall ꝑfessor & this the Lord did when I neuer sought nor regarded him;

    12: He is the god that made me a poore meanes of scatter[i]ng the knowl. of Xt & setting vp dayes of fasting & times of holy conference & consciencious sabboth keeping. I was weake euery way, & yong among the schollers where I liued & to study what to do for the Lord.

    13. he is the god that carryed me into Essex frō Cambridge, & gaue me the most sweet society of so many godly ministers as mr Hooker & mr Wells & mr Wharton mr Bedell642 & mr Burrowes &c. although I could do no good among them;

    14: He is the god that sent me by all these ministers to obey the voyce of god in the call of the people of Earles Colne a most ꝑphane place, wr the Lord blessed my poore labours to mr Harlak: & his family. & to many others in the town & cuntry. & here the Lord kept me frō troubles 3 yeares & a halfe vntill the Bishop Laud put me to silence & would not let me liue in the town & this he did wn I looked to be made a shame & confusio to all:

    April: 4 1639: ꝑrep, for a fast

    May not I be the cause of the churches sorrowes wc are renewed vpō vs for what haue the sheepe done?

    For: 1: my hart lying long out from the Lord the Lord 1 sent a terrible storme at sea to awaken me, & the deliuerance from it was so sweet yt I could not but thinke my life should after that be only heauenly: as being puld frō an apparent death to liue a new life; 2: immediatly vpō this my child was taken frō me my first borne wc made me remember how bitter it was to crosse the Lords loue; 3: set my face tow. New England. wr considering the liberties of gods house I resolued & thought it fit to be wholy for the Ld in all manner of holines at bed at board. 4: then the Lord tooke my deare wife frō me, & this md me resolue to delight no more in creat. but in the Ld & to seeke him, 5. then the Lord threatned blindnes to my child & this md gods will afflicting sweet to me; but mc more commanding & ꝑmising & yt I would do his will & leaue these th. to hims: but oh how is my gold become dim; &c. how little haue I answered the Ld considering also my ship resolutions wc I haue writ down; I haue wanted both remembrance hart strength or will to do any of these th: & therefore haue not cause to blame the Ld for he hath pswaded my hart to this, but my own concupiscence & vile ns: which Lord that I may mourne for that thou mayst restore comforts to me; apostacy from god is greeuous, tho but in a little degree; to serue satan wtout pmise to forsake the Ld ag. ꝑmise; what euill haue I found in the Lords: this brings more disgrace vpō the Ld yn if yr had neuer bin any comming to him; this is a sin ag. more loue Ld might neuer haue drawn:

    2 The people being committed to me 1. not pittyed so mc. 2. nor prayed for: 3 nor visited. 4: nor haue I shewn so mc loue vnto;

    3 The family I haue not edifyed nor instructed nor taking all occasion of speech wt ym.

    4: The gospell I haue preached 1. not seene in the glory. 2. not beleeued. 3. not affected at 4 not seeking to Xt for supply yt all hath bin dead woorke & fruit of pride:

    5 Walking dayly wtout Xt & appro[ui]ng my selfe vnto him: & h: tho I do his woorke yet I do not mind him in it his command & his presence; nor yet any indeauour to grow somewhat euery day:

    6: My not Lamenting the falls of ꝑfessors & conditiō of the cuntry, who are not indeed the glory of god in the woorld nor the holy people;

    Is it not hence?

    1. That many pillers in this church haue fallen as if the Ld would not betrust such precious vessells to my care & hath not the sorrow lyen vpō me?

    2: h: vniuersall mortality wn Hezekiahs hart was lifted vp yn wrath came not only on him but on all the rest;643

    3: h: I haue had this long sicknes; as if the Ld would delight no more in me to vse me;

    Oh my god who shall be like to thee in pardoning & subduing mine iniquities;

    My Life: Lord Jesu ꝑdō: euery day.

    1. 1 I Seeke not the Lord in prayer till I find him;
      1. h: 1: I manifest contempt of Xt. can liue wtout him;
      2. 2: contempt of this great priuiledge who may haue all I seeke for of him:
      3. 3. ꝑuoke Xt who loues my compa[n]y & is angry wt me for not keeping it
    2. 2: Then I goe frō prayer, & follow my calling but not for the Lord am not holy in all manner of conuersatiō & hence, I loose wt I got in prayer nay forget wt I gained; & so make no ꝑgresse nor increase in a Xtian course; & so either yr is no life of Xt wc is most sad, or if yr be any I crucify it & disfigure it & put it to open shame; wc is most sad also:
    3. 3: I maintayne nt a will & firme resolutiō wn I see to auoyd these practises; remember my soule to wait all the day long vpō the Ld to plant it in thee; for my soyle will not beare it nor bring it foorth:
    4. 4. I would fayne haue notice of the woorke of grace in my hart yt so I might be comforted in the mids of my sins wc I am not resolued to leaue.
    5. 1. Law. that the magistrate kisse the Churches feet: that h: meddle nt beyond his bounds,
    6. 2: yt All chu[rc]hs giue obed. vnto him.
    7. 3: that none be electd magistrate but such a on as is member ecclesiae, yet if after he prooue bad, he be not cast off frō his office till conditiō broken:
    8. 4; yt yr be an vniuersal reformat, of extreme wag[e]s & selli[n]g &c.
    9. Q. is it fit yt any law should b[e] before diuulged:
    10. 2. Church businesses not yet setled:

    A Roman being asked how he liud so long. answered intus melle, foris oleo:

    quid loquacior vanitate, ait augustinus

    John Bridge hath 8łi of what I am to rec: frō my brother;

    Est genus quoddam vitupand; sui ambitiosum;

    Receiud of Giles Archer. 54s: the other shilling was not in his booke;

    rec: of him of Towcester 50s at one time & 30s at another, in all 4łi.

    My brother Samuell owes me for the house644


    & I lent him


    so that in all tis


    I receiued frō my brother Samuell

    1 frō him selfe frō the ship


    2 by mr Winthrop;


    3: he paid to mr Hooker for me in lew of the house 10łi of

    Wc 65łi was borrowed of me;


    so that ꝑtly to my s. & ptly to mr Hooker my brother

    hath payd;

    to mr Hooker


    to my selfe


    so that I haue receiued in all frō him for the paiment of this



    so that he now owes me,


    To my brother Damport645 for taking in the medo[w] in long


    s d



    1. 7

    to mr Andrewes for rate


    to John Bridge 2łi:


    to mr Andrewes:

    19. or


    Deliuerd to mr Buckly647


    to my brothr Samll


    out of it


    to mr Buckly ag.


    in all


    My brother Sam: paid to mr Hooker


    I haue paid to mr Buckly for him


    so yt there is now paid


    To rec: 93łi:

    1 rec:


    2 rec:


    3. rec:




    No: –1–


    for medow


    for rates to And.


    to John Bridge


    6.3.7. due:

    Payd also to mr Andrews: for his




    [Lent mr feaner: of brothrs money



    [Lent brothr Ston649



    [Lent mris Banbrick650



    [Lent mr Harlak.



    [My brothr Frost owes me for a hog


    [my brother Winshop651 owes me


    [my brothr Ston, for wheat]

    [Girling652 owes me mony



    [John Brownsō653 at Kenecticut



    Lent to brother Chesholme654


    Lent to my bro: Town


    [Lent to my bro: Sill655



    Lent to minustrs for Farneside


    Brothr Champney hath of John brownson his money


    To John Trumble656 for carr[y]i[n]g down mr Goodwins657 books


    to him for fetching mr Harryes658


    to him for goodman Oets:

    1s 4d


    11. 4.

    Reckonings betw. Robert & I:

    All reckonings being md euen I paid him


    of his yeares wages wc came to 7łi so that there remaynes to be payd,


    May. 1: 1646.

    I paid to Rober[t] Latham659 for his second yeares service vpō Nou: 12: 1646: eight pound. of which he receiued 3łi in mony & 5łi of mr Glouer of Dorchester.

    There remaynes due to Robert one pound 5 shillings fiue pence 1:5:5:

    because he paid 3s to [some] one for me;

    also I am to remember him for his time frō Michaelmas to Nouember: 9: wc he left to me to giue him any thing or nothing for: he was 2 weekes wt me & had his boord freely:

    I left to pay for nayles, — a 11d hauing giuen him 2s3d for part of them