His lectures drew large audiences, including many Protestants.
It is a mistake to say that he grew more conservative in later years; but his judgment grew more generous and catholic. He was a greater orator than man of letters, and his sermons in New York were delivered to large audiences, averaging one thousand at the Masonic Temple, and were printed each week; in eloquence and in the charm of his spoken word he was probably surpassed in his day by none save George William Curtis.
In 1807 he was appointed Lady Margaret professor of divinity at Cambridge, and lectured to large audiences on biblical criticism, substituting English for the traditional Latin.
He succeeded in maintaining his disguise, and on arriving at Khiva went safely through two audiences of the khan.
Few of those in the audiences of Moliere, returning home under the grey walls of St Germaindes-Pres, knew that within that monastery the men whose midnight they disturbed were laying the basis for all scientific history; and few of the later historians of that age have been any wiser.