Sunday, February 29 1756

My wife and I both at church in the morning… We had for dinner the sparerib sent us from Hartfield and a butter pond pudding. My wife and I both at church in the afternoon; the text in Ecclesiastes 9:11: “I returned, and saw under the sun, that the race is not to the swift, nor the battle to the strong, neither yet bread to the wise, nor yet riches to men of understanding, nor yet favor to men of skill; but time and chance happeneth to them all.” From these words we had an excellent sermon to persuade us all to repent that we may avert the wrath of heaven at this time when there are now abroad in the world fires, earthquakes, and at a time when our happy isle is in hourly expectation of an invasion from a powerful enemy who wants nothing more than to reduce us to state of slavery and, what will be still worse, deprive us of our holy religion and in itstead institute popery. Then if we reflect on this our happy constitution and consider how unhappy we should be by such a resolution, we have then the greatest reason to abandon (in the best manner our frail nature can be brought to let us) all our wickednesses and irreligion and turn to the Lord our God, who is full of goodness, long-suffering and of great kindness.

After churchtime my wife and I went up to Thomas Fuller’s. We drank tea there, as did Mr Porter’s maid Sarah Taylor and Fanny Weller. We all came home about 5:30, staying there not above 1½ hours. Thomas Fuller was not at home. We all came home together. Sarah Taylor and Fanny Weller came in and sat with us about 20 minutes. I wrote to Mr Verral in answer to the letter I received from him on Saturday. I also wrote a letter to Mr John Russell for Mr James Hutson in answer to one he received in answer to mine of the 10th instant.

When I drew up my rules for regimen, I mentioned to breakfast one day in every week on only dry bread for eatables, and likewise to eat no meat one day in every week, as also to go to bed at the least one night in every week without a supper. I am come to a resolution to fix the followings days for a due observance of the said rules; viz., to eat only dry bread on Sunday morning, to eat no meat on Friday and to go to bed without a supper every Wednesday night.

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