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evidence of its truth, and so certain to discover the object of our solicitude—the true faith of Christ. In vain do we challenge our opponents to conjure up before us the individuals by whose magic powers the novelties, which are imputed to our religion, were first engrafted upon the primitive faith of Christendom, without any one perceiving the strange exotic foliage which thenceforth appeared upon the ancient indigenous stock. No branch, however small or insignificant, has been lopped off; no tender shoot, blighted by the noxious exhalations of error, has drooped and withered on the parent stem; whose fall has not been registered in the annals of history. Could then so many and such gigantic plants, sucking like vampyres the strength and vigour of the tree of which they had taken such tyrannic hold, parasites of the most deadly quality, not only attach themselves, but flourish upon the very life-blood of the dishonoured monarch of the woods, and no man tell the tale of their unnatural usurpation ? Was all nature so deeply sunk in apathy and ignorance, as to be unconscious of the mighty change? Were the human passions become so docile, as to submit without a murmur to these
new and galling restraints ? Was reason so subjugated, as to embrace strange and unheard of mysteries, without even an expression of astonishment? Was every watchman of the Lord slumbering at his post, when the angel of darkness came to steal away the body of Faith, and bury it impervious to the search of man? Was there not even one sleeping witness' to attest the fact? No, not one! The mysterious deed was accomplished by such master-magicians, that no man knew, not even the most wakeful sentinel, who they were, or whence they came, whether
In airs from heaven, or blasts from hell, Yet these are paradoxes with which the credulity of mankind is mocked, and their reason insulted, by men who have exalted that reason into a very goddess. They would annihilate, at one fell sweep, every attesting monument, -would obliterate every trace of historic record from the world,--would fill the dreary wilderness they had made, with the creations of their own fancy, and people the regions from which they had banished so many sages, saints, and scholars, with mere shadowy phantoms or revolting chimeras. They would apply their flimsy machinery to raze the stately structure of
our religion to the ground, forgetting that, to crown their vain endeavours with success, they must undermine the foundations of Christianity itself.- But the power which preserved our religion in her infancy, when she had, perhaps, even stronger prejudices and passions to contend with than she has at present, and which has brought her triumphantly through the troubles and misfortunes of her manhood, will continue to guide her in her old
age, till, having accomplished her destinies upon earth, she returns, pure and spotless, to whence she came—to the bosom of the Divinity.
I have ventured, very considerably, to enlarge the
present edition, both by the introduction of fresh materials, and by entering more minutely into some of the arguments already advanced. I am still fully aware of the very feeble manner in which I have conducted the cause I have undertaken to advocate; and, were it not for the very powerful minds of whose assistance I have availed myself, I could hope to make but little impression. But, of the merits of the question itself, I have no mistrust. I must only hope that the poverty of the workmanship does not conceal the richness of the materials; and that the might of the weapon
may be measured, rather by the justice of the cause, than by the strength of the arm that wields it.
I have frequently referred to a work which has but very lately appeared, and of which it is impossible to speak in terms of sufficient praise. I feel conscious that I have offered it violence, and perhaps done it injustice, in the few quotations I have given. A solitary, scanty, and unconnected passage can convey no adequate idea of the merit of an argument, which has been sketched, coloured, and finished, in its minutest details, by the most masterly hand. I hope that the temptation to draw from so rich a mine, but above all an anxious desire to introduce this elegant writer to the acquaintance of
my readers, will afford a sufficient excuse for mutilating so perfect a performance.
Stuttgard, October 1st. 1828.
Since the date of the above, additional materials of interest, relative to Irish affairs, having been supplied, they will be found in No. XVII. of the APPENDIX.
than mine, have of late years entered the lists of controversy, that I should consider myself only a useless volunteer in the cause, were it not for the peculiar circumstances in which I find myself placed. Out of more than a hundred English peers of my own rank, I am the only one who refuse the Test which the Legislature has thought proper to establish, as the qualification for the exercise of constitutional rights. It is an enviable privilege, though one to which a high responsibility is attached, to enjoy a voice in the affairs of the Commonwealth; to be a guardian over the people's rights, and an instrument for the public good : I therefore consider it a sacred duty to show, why I refuse the exercise of functions 80 exalted in their character, and so important in
That such a Test should ever have existed, is matter of astonishment; but that it should exist
Tay This Test is the true-born offspring of that atrocious conspiracy which sacrificed the lives of so many innocent