Lectures, Morning

Lectures, Morning certain casuistical lectures, which were preached by some of the most able divines in London. The occasion of these lectures seems to be this: During the troublesome times of Charles I., most of the citizens having some near relation or friend in the army of the earl of Essex, so many bills were sent up to the pulpit every Lord's day for their preservation that the minister had neither time to read them nor to recommend their cases to God in prayer; several London divines therefore agreed to set apart a morning hour for this purpose, one half to be spent in prayer, and the other in a suitable exhortation to the people. When the heat of the war was over, it became a casuistical lecture, and was carried on till the restoration of Charles II. These sermons were afterwards published in several volumes quarto, under the title of the Morning Exercises. The authors were the most eminent preachers of the day; among them was, e.g. archbishop Tillotson. It appears that these lectures were held every morning for one month only, and, from the preface to the volume, dated 1689, the time was afterwards contracted to a fortnight. Most of these were delivered at Cripplegate Church, some at St. Giles's, and a volume against popery in Soulthwark. Mr. Neale observes that this lecture was afterwards revived in a different form, and continued in his day. It was kept up long afterwards at several places in the summer, a week at each place, but latterly the time was exchanged for the evening.

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