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agreement with his ecclesiastical superiors, enjoyed a comparative degree of quiet such as was never again to be his lot.
Before, however, dealing with the period of strife that now awaited Hus and during which the events of his life become involved in the whirlpool of the politics of his time, the early writings of the Bohemian church-reformer should be briefly noticed. They are more numerous than was formerly believed. Earlier writers generally surmised that all, or almost all, his works had been written during the last six troublous years of his life (1409-1415). It is true that fewer writings of Hus were then known than is the case at present. Yet it is nevertheless a physical impossibility that Hus should, during those troubled years of exile and imprisonment, have written all the numerous Bohemian and Latin works with which we are now acquainted. The bibliography of the works of Hus is still incomplete, though the masterly work of Dr. Flajshans, entitled Literarni Cinnost Mistra Jana Husi (The Literary Activity of Master John Hus), has thrown a vast amount of light on a formerly very obscure subject. Even now almost unknown manuscripts of Hus that were secreted in little-known libraries continue to be re-discovered and published.
Very early Bohemian writings of Hus, perhaps his earliest, are some sermons that have been recently discovered. Of these some had been partially known previously, as Hus had, as was his custom, incorporated them, though in a modified form, in: other works, particularly in his Postilla. The discovery is due to that indefatigable scholar, Mr. Adolphus Patera, formerly librarian of the Bohemian museum at Prague. Mr. Patera found these manuscripts in the library of the Cistercian monastery at Wilhering in Upper Austria, and published them in the Journal of the Bohemian Society of Sciences. Hus, or rather the copier, here still uses the ancient system of writing Bohemian which, as will be mentioned later, was so greatly ameliorated and altered by Hus himself. He here also still intersperses his sentences with Latin words, a proceeding of which Hus strongly disapproved when he began to devote his attention to the language of his country.
On the other hand, we here already find Hus's holy hatred of vice and immorality, and he here already propounds the theory that sin is no more permissible to a priest than to a layman, and indeed more blamable-a theory that appeared paradoxical to most of Huss contemporaries, particularly among the priesthood. Thus when preaching on Zacchaeus (St. Luke, chap. xix.) he says: “ Those householders are manifest sinners who allow immorality or dice-playing in their houses. I say the same of dancing, by which they mock God on Sundays. As St. Bernard says, those who, particularly if they are priests, allow in their houses dancing or diceing or immorality, commit a mortal sin, and the priests more so than the laymen, for what is venial for a layman is mortal for a priest. "1 A very early Bohemian work of Hus also is his translation of the Trialogus of Wycliffe. It was probably made between the years 1403 and 1407. If, as has been conjectured on the strength of statements made at the trial of Jerome of Prague at Constance, Jerome assisted Hus in this translation, this would be the only known instance of collaboration between him and Jerome. The translation has been long, and probably irretrievably lost, and its existence is known to us only through the testimony of numerous contemporary writers. Numerous manuscripts of it appear to have existed, but were destroyed during the period of Romanist reaction that followed the battle of the White Mountain. The translation was dedicated to the Margrave Jodocus of Moravia, a cousin of King Venceslas. It is probable that the frequent quotations from this work of Wycliffe which we find in the writings of the later Bohemian reformer, Peter Chelcicky, were derived from this translation.
Among Hus's Latin works that belong to this early period is one that, though formerly almost unknown, is the largest and may also be considered the greatest of his Latin works. Though Hus here also conforms to the scholastic system which required incessant quotations and "authorities,” he appears here as both a
1 Vestnik Kralovské ceské spolecnosti nauk (Journal of the Ri. Bohemian Society of Sciences) for 1890, p. 360.
profounder and a more original scholar than in books such as the treatise, De Ecclesia. I refer to Hus's work, Super IV. Sententiarum, which has quite recently been published by Dr. Flajshans." The discovery of this work has already changed, and will in future probably even more change, the appreciation of Hus as a scholar. The book is a vast commentary on the then world-famed work of Peter Lombard entitled Sententiarum Libri quatuor. This book, the work of Peter, born at Lumello in Lombardy—whence his name of Lombardus—towards the end of the eleventh century, was for many generations the recognised text-book of theology. Peter's work consists in a vast collection of the opinions of the fathers of the church on all matters of faith, the writer generally refraining from stating his own views. Though Peter's book was, of course, in strictest accordance with the views of the Church of Rome as far as they had been formulated in his time, yet it did not always escape suspicion. The work, which is based on the fluctuating foundation of patristic tradition, and places side by side contradictory opinions, bears traces of a freedom that was afterwards lost.? The scholastic writers, indeed, contributed very little to the development of dogma. Laying stress rather on those truths that had been longest accepted, they endeavoured to steer clear of dangerously contentious matters. Thus the sentences of Peter contain no references to the papacy. In spite of these circumstances the Libri Sententiarum was a generally recognised authority, and innumerable commentaries on the work soon began to appear. Most young theologians at the beginning of their career lectured on Peter Lombard and then published their lectures in the form of a commentary on his work. Thus Hus's contemporary and great adversary, Peter of Ailly, also wrote as his first work a commentary on the Sententiarum Libri quatuor.3 The advancement of his academic career was, as Dr. Flajshans conjectures, an inducement to Hus to undertake this great work, which he began in 1407. Peter
Super IV. Sententiarum Heraurgegeben von Wenzel Flajshans und Dr. Marie Kominkova, 1906.
Dr. Harnack, Lehrbuch der Dogmengeschichte, vol. iii. p. 330. 3 Tschackert, Peter von Ailly, p. 11.
Lombard's book, founded largely on St. Augustine, had, however, in itself great attraction for Hus. Hus's book, Super IV. Sententiarum, proves that the writer was at that time already a man of vast erudition. Hus followed the argumentation and order of ideas of Lombard, whose work was the subject of his commentary. He borrowed largely from the earlier commentators, Bonaventura and St. Thomas Aquinas. He also quotes extensively St. Augustine and the Trialogus of Wycliffe. In some cases, when it was endeavoured to establish a dependence of Hus on Wycliffe, more careful research has proved that both writers had—as was then frequently the case--borrowed extensively and without acknowledgment from the works of Peter Lombard. Of the many other writers used by Hus we may mention St. Anselm, Duns Scotus, Occam, and Bradwardine. It is interesting to note as a proof of Hus's extensive learning that when hein Book II, distinction 8 -treats of the truly scholastic question, whether the angels have bodies naturally (naturaliter) joined to them, he quotes to support his views the opinions, firstly, of St. Augustine, secondly, of Plato
-in the Timaeus—thirdly, of Apulejus! It must be noticed that in this extensive work Hus's teaching is entirely in accordance with that of the Roman Church of his time. In one of his latest works, written but a few months before his death, Hus lays stress on this fact, and in answer to the accusation levelled against him of having denied the validity of the sacrament when administered by an unworthy priest, he quoted his early lectures on Peter Lombard.2 This is entirely in accordance with the truth. Hus in his Super IV. Sententiarum has expressed on this difficult question views that are identical with those of Rome. Even an unworthy priest can validly administer the sacrament. It is sufficient that he who administers
1 Hus calls him “ Bragwardin," p. 293 of Dr. Flajshans's edition of Super IV. Sententiarum.
See p. xvii. of Dr. Flajshans's (German) introduction to Super IV. Sententiarum.
3 “ Distinccio ista 13a. continet quod sacerdotes aliqui, licet sint pravi, consecrant vere, quia non in merito consecrantis sed in verbo efficitur creatoris.” (Super IV. Sententiarum, Lib. IV. Distinccio XIII. pp. 582–588, of Dr. Flajshans's edition.)
it should be a priest, should speak the words of consecration, and should have the intention of administering the sacrament, that is, of doing what the church does.
It is obviously beyond the purpose of this book to give a detailed account of this great work of Hus's, which can be described as a commentary on the dogmatics as expounded in the then universally recognised text-book of Peter Lombard. The book, which has only been recently brought to public knowledge, is far too little known, and well deserves to attract attention, particularly among theologians. Of the other Latin works of Hus that belong to this period two, the treatises De Corpore Christi and De Sanguine Christi, have already been mentioned.