Obrázky na stránke
PDF
ePub

the best and only friends of the Church: High Churchmen its bitterest enėmies.

No. 51 is a curious

s
paper on

The Three High Churches in England: "

The High-Churches, which differ from this Establishment, are three in number: 1. Dr. Bungey’s* High Church; 2. Mr. Lesley's High Church; and 3. Dr. Brett's High Church,

Here is a curious quotation from this virulent publication :

A High Churchman may be denominated from divers marks and exclamations. He must be devout in damning of Dissenters; he must roar furiously for the Church and its great modern apostle, the late Duke of Ormond, with some other pious and forsworn gentlemen, who are well affected to the Pretender and the Convocation; he must rebel for passive obedience; he must uphold divine right by diabolical means; and he must be loud and zealous for hereditary, indefeasible, and the like orthodox nonsense. But there is one sign more of a true Churchman, which is more lasting and universal than all the rest, and that is a firm and senseless persuasion that the Church is in danger.“ If a man believe this it is enough, his reputation is raised ; and though his life show more of the demon than the Christian, he shall be deemed an excellent Churchman. This is so true, that if an honest atheistical Churchman will but curse and roar against a toleration of Dissenters, he shall be sure to find a toleration himself for the blackest iniquities, be rewarded with reputation, and, if possible, with power. .

Now for the Low Church clergy.---Vol. iii. pp. 157– 163.

[ocr errors]

In Sir Walter Scott's edition of the Somers Tracts, vol. xii. p. 320, occurs a doggrel of six-and-twenty lines, entitled “ HighChurch Miracles, or Modern Inconsistencies, printed in the year 1710.” It commences thus:

The High Church have a right divine from Jove,
By signs and wonders they pretend to prove
They can a mortal soul immortal make;
They can by prayers our constitution shake.

* A name for Dr. Sacheverell.

+ Defoe calls this “the motto" of the Church party. (See à curious passage in The Review, ii, 230.)

And ends with the lines

But I defy themselves and all their devils
To wash the Ethiop white, and purge High Church from evils.

Any Notes on the present subject would be imperfect without a reference to some of the voluminous writings of the author of Robinson Crusoe, the indomitable Daniel Defoe. It is necessary to notice, also, some of the writings of Charles Leslie the Nonjuror, who is styled by Puritan writers the great champion of High Churchmen—the Coryphæus of his party.

Defoe's most celebrated pamphlet is thus entitled :

The Shortest Way with the Dissenters; or, Proposals for the Establishment of the Church. London: printed in the year 1702. 4to., pp. 29.

The irony of this satire was so exquisite, that it deceived both High and Low; and many of the more violent of the former party welcomed it as an admirable production. When the writer was found out, and his scope perceived, the fury and indignation of High Churchmen knew no bounds. Defoe was prosecuted for libel, and condemned to pay a fine of two hundred marks to the queen,* to stand three times in the pillory, to be imprisoned during the queen's pleasure, and to find sureties for his good behaviour for seven years. A High-Church writer thus speaks of the pamphlet :

It passed currently as the work of one of those they called High Churchmen: and though the pretended zeal and earnestness of the author, to have the Dissenters treated according to their deserts, was universally condemned by Churchmen in general, yet it served the purpose well enough to brand that whole body with bloodthirstiness and a persecuting spirit, till, by the diligence of the government, it appeared that no Churchman had been so little a Christian; but that it was done by one of the chief scribes of the other party with a mere design to halloo the mob to make the world believe that the Dissenters throats were to be cut the shortest way, and to provoke these to begin first for their own preservation: for which wicked attempt the author had his just reward. But the party were so little ashamed of it, that whenever it was objected against them, it was only grinned off as a piece of wit and management.*

* By Defoe's long imprisonment on this occasion, he lost upwards of 3,5007., and was reduced to ruin.

To complete the punishment, the book was burnt by the hands of the common hangman by order of Parliament. However, the man who wrote a “Hymn to the Pillory was not likely to mind the latter indignity; accordingly, Defoe remarks in one of his works :

I have heard a bookseller in King James's time say, " That if he would have a book sell, he would have it burnt by the hands of the common hangman." - Essay on Projects, p. 173.

Shortly after he wrote

A Brief Explanation of a late Pamphlet, entitled “The Shortest Way with the Dissenters.” London, 1703, 4to." And next year our

“unabashed Defoe” publishes“ More Short Ways with the Dissenters.” London, 1704, 4to., pp. 24.

The keen satire entitled The Shortest Way with the Dissenters, drew forth a vast number of replies and animadversions. One is mentioned for the sake of the title:

The Fox with his Firebrand unkennelled and ensnared; or, a Short Answer to Mr. Daniel Defoe's “Shortest way with the Dissenters." As also to his “ Brief Explication” of the same. Together with some Animadversions upon the Sham Reflections made upon his “Shortest Way," and printed with the same. London: printed in the year 1703, 4to.

Defoe's satire was not altogether uncalled for, and is justified by many writings of the High Church party. It seems to have especial reference to a sermon of Dr. Sacheverell's, preached before the University of Oxford, and printed with the imprimatur of the Vice-Chancellor, dated June 2, 1702. It is entitled

* "A Caveat against the Whigs, in , & Short Historical View of their Transactions. Wherein are discovered their many Attempts and Contrivances against the established Government, both in Church and State, since the Restoration of King Charles II. London: 1711, Svo." The third and fourth parts of this work were published in 1712. The passage above cited is from Part IV., pp. 38, 39.

+ Defoe gives an "explanation" of this satire in another work also: see The Present State of Parties in Great Britain, London, 1712, 8vo., pp. 18, 21.

The Political Union: A Discourse, showing the Dependence of Government on Religion in General; and of the English Monarchy on the Church of England in particular. In it occurs the following passage :

Men must be strange infatuated sots and bigots to be so much in love with their ruin, as to seek and court it: and it is as unaccountable and amazing a contradiction to our reason, as the greatest reproach and scandal upon our Church, however others may be seduced or misled, that any pretending to that sacred and inviolable character of being her true sons, pillars, and defenders, should turn such apostates and renegadoes to their oaths and professions, such false traitors to their trusts and offices, as to strike sail with a party that is such an open and avowed enemy to our Communion; and against whom every man that wishes its welfare ought to hang out the Bloody Flag and Banner of Defiance. But in this, as well as most other circumstances, both our Church and State share the same common fate, that they can be ruined by none but themselves; and that, if ever they receive a mortal stab or wound, it must be in the house of their friends. Dennis replied to this sermon in a pamphlet entitled

The Danger of Priestcraft to Religion and Government; with some Politick Reasons for a Toleration, &c. London, 1702. Which was answered by Charles Leslie in

The New Association of those called Moderate Churchmen, with the Modern Whigs and Fanaticks, to undermine and blow up the present Church and Government, Occasioned by a late Pamphlet, entitled “ The Danger of Priestcraft,” &c. With a Supplement on occasion of the New Scotch Presbyterian Covenant. By a True Churchman. London, 1702, 4to.

Upon Nov. 5, 1709, Dr. Sacheverell preached his famous sermon at St. Paul's, The Perils among False Brethren ; which, after his being impeached before the House of Commons, and condemned by the Lords, was burned by the hangman.

Dr. Sacheverell's trial, and the agitation of the Tory mob, produced many publications. Ned Ward, one of the inferior grade of High Church partisans, published some effusions in separate cantos, and afterwards collected them into a volume with the following title :

Vulgus Britannicus; or, The British Hudibras, in Fifteen Cantos. The Five Parts complete in One Volume. Containing the Secret History of the late London Mob; their Rise, Progress, and Suppression by the Guards ; intermixed with the Civil Wars betwixt High Church and Low Church, down to this Time. Being a Continuation of the late ingenious Mr. Butler's "Hudibras.” Written by the Author of "The London Spy.” The Second Edition, adorned with Cuts of Battles, Emblems, and Effigies, engraven on Copper Plates. London: printed for Sam. Briscoe, &c., 1710, 8vo, pp. 180.

At this period Defoe published his

Instructions from Rome in favour of the Pretender. Inscribed to the most elevated Don Sacheverellio, and his Brother Don Higginisco. And which all Perkinites, Non-Jurors, High-Flyers, Popish-Desirers, Wooden-shoe Admirers, and Absolute Non-resistance Drivers, are obliged to pursue and maintain, under pain of his Unholinesses Damnation, in order to carry on their intended Subversion of a Government fixed upon Revolution Principles. London: J. Baker, 1710, 8vo.

And also

The High Church Address to Dr. Henry Sacheverell, for the great Service he has done the Established Church and Nation: wherein is shown the Justice of the Proceedings of those Gentlemen who have encouraged the pulling down and destroying those Nurseries of Schism, the Presbyterian Meeting-houses. Submitted to the Consideration of all Good Churchmen and Conscientious Dissenters. London: J. Baker, 1710. Price One Penny.

* Wooden shoes rank among the chief evils from which we were delivered in " that never-to-be-forgotten year of grace, 1688." They are gratefully enumerated in the famous Orange toast: “To the Glorious, Pious, and Immortal Memory of the Great Deliverer, &c., who rescued us from Popery, Prelacy, Brass Money, and Wooden Shoes.They may be said to form part of the Greater Litany of the Puritans. The Lesser Litany runs simply :

From Plague, Pestilence, and Famine;
From Bishops, Priests, and Deacons;

Good Lord, deliver us !

« PredošláPokračovať »