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walk through the city of London on the at the cart's tail ; adultery pun shed evening of the Lord's day, without see- with death: in order to reach crime ing an idle person, or hearing any thing more surely, they persecuted pleasure. but the voice of prayer or praise from But if they were austere against others, churches and private houses.”* People they were so against themselves, and would rise before daybreak, and walk practised the virtues they exacted. a great distance to be able to hear the After the Restoration, two thousand word of God. “There were no gam- ministers, rather than conform to the ing houses, or houses of pleasure ; no new liturgy, resigned their cures, though profane swearing, drunkenr.ess, or any they and their families had to die of kind of debauchery.”+ The Parlia- hunger. Many of them, says Baxter mentary soldiers came in great num- thinking that they were not justifier 21 bers to listen to sermons, spoke of re- quitting their ministry after being set ligion, prayed and sang psalms to- apart for it by ordination, preached to gether, when on duty. In 1644 Parlia- such as would hear them in the fields ment forbade the sale of commodities and in certain houses, until they were on Sunday, and ordained "that no per seized and thrown into prisons, where son shall travel, or carry a burden, or a great number of them perished. do any worldly labor, upon penalty of Cromwell's fifty thousand veterans, ios. for the traveller, and ss. for every suddenly disbanded and without reburden. That no person shall on the sources, did not bring a single recruit Lord's day use, or be present at, any to the vagabonds and bandits. wrestling, shooting, fowling, ringing of Royalists themselves confessed that, in bells for pleasure, markets, wakes, every department of honest industry, church-ales, dancing, games or sports the discarded warriors prospered bewhatsoever, upon penalty of 55. to yond other men, that none was charged every one above fourteen years of age. with any theft or robbery, that none And if children are found offending in was heard to ask an alms, and that, if a the premises, their parents or guardians baker, a mason, or a wagoner, attractto forfeit 12d. for every offence. If the ed notice by his diligence and sobriety, several fines above mentioned cannot he was in all probability one of Oliver's be levied, the offending party shall be old soldiers."* Purified by persecuset in the stocks for the space of three tion and ennobled by patience, they hours.” When the Independents were ended by winning the tolerance of the in power, severity became still greater. law and the respect of the public, and The officers in the army, having con- raised national morality, as they had victed one of their quartermasters of saved national liberty. But others, exblasphemy, condemned him to have iles in America, pushed to the extreme his tongue bored with a red-hot iron, this great religious and stoical spirit, his sword broken over his head, and with its weaknesses and its power, with himself to be dismissed from the army. its vices and its virtues. Their deterDuring Cromwell's expedition in Ire mination, intensified by a fervent faith, land, we read that no blasphemy was employed in political and practical purheard in the camp; the soldiers spent suits, invented the science of emigra. their leisure hours in reading the Bible, tion, made exile tolerable, drove back singing psalms, and holding religious the Indians, fertilized the desert, raised controversies. In 1650 the punish- a rigid morality into a civil law, founded ments inflicted on Sabbath-breakers and armed a church, and on the Bible were doubled. Stern laws were passed as a basis built up a new state.j against betting, gallantry was reckoned * Macaulay, Hist. of England, ea. Lady a crime; the theatres were destroyed, Trevelyan, i. 121. the spectators fined, the actors whipt for having sung a, profane song Mathias, a
A certain John Denis was publicly whipt * Neal, ii. 553. Compare with the French little girl, having given some roasted chestnuts Revolution. When the Bastille was demol- to Jeremiah Boosy, and told him ironically ished, they wrote on the ruins these words: that he might give them back to her in Para "Ici l'on danse."
dise, was ordered to ask pardon three times ir the difference between the two systems and the church, and to be three days on tread and wo nations.
water in prison. 1660--1670 ; records of Masai † Neal, Hist. of the Puritams ü. 555.
From this contrast we see
That was aot a conception of life generation been i sund more mutilated from which a genuine literature might in all the faculties which produce con be expected to issue. The idea of the templation and ornament, more reduced beautiful 's wanting, and what is a lit- to the faculties which nourish discus. erature without that? The natural ex- sion and morality. Like a beautiful pression of the heart's emotions is pro- insect which has become transformed scribed, and what is a literature without and has lost its wings, so we see the that? They abolished as impious the poetic generation of Elizabeth disap free stage and the rich poesy which the pear, leaving in its place but a sluggish Renaissance had brought them. They caterpillar, a stubborn and useful spe rejected as profane the ornate style and ner, armeá with industrious feet and copious eloquence which had been es- formidable jaws, spending its existence tablished around them by the imitation in eating into old leaves and devouring of antiquity and of Italy. They mis- its enemies. They are without style; trusted reason, and were incapable of they speak like business men; at most, philosophy. They ignored the divine here and there, a pamphlet of Prynne languor of the Imitatio Christi and the possesses a little vigor. Their histories, touching tenderness of the Gospel. like May's for instance, are fat and Their character exhibits only manliness, heavy. Their memoirs, even those of their conduct austerity, their mind pre- Ludlow and Mrs. Hutchinson, are long, ciseness. We find amongst them only wearisome, mere statements, destitute excited theologians, minute controver- of personal feelings, void of enthusiasm sialists, energetic men of action, narrow or entertaining matter ; they seem to and patient minds, engrossed in posi- ignore themselves, and are engrossed tive proofs and practical labors, void of by the general prospects of their general ideas and refined tastes, dulled cause.' Good works of piety, solid by texts, dry and obstinate reasoners, and convincing sermons ; sincere, edi. who twisted the Scripture in order to fying, exact, methodical books, like extract from it a form of government those of Baxter, Barclay, Calamy, John or a table of dogma. What could be Owen; personal narratives, like that of narrower or more repulsive than these Baxter, like Fox's journal, Bunyan's pursuits and wrangles ? A pamphlet life, a large collection of documents and of the time petitions for liberty of con- arguments, conscientiously arranged, science, and draws its arguments (1) this is all they offer ; the Puritan defrom the parable of the wheat and the stroys the artist, stiffens the man, fetters tares which grow together till the har- the writer ; and leaves of artist, man, vest ; (2) from this maxim of the Apos- writer, only a sort of abstract being, tles, Let every man be thoroughly per- the slave of a watchword. If a Milton suaded in his own mind ; (3) from this springs up amongst them, it is because text, Whatsoever is not of faith is sin ; by his great curiosity, his travels, his (4) from this divine rule of our Saviour, comprehensive education, above all by Do to others what you would they his youth saturated in the grand poetry should do unto you. Later, when the of the preceding age, and by his inde. angry Commons desired to pass judg- pendence of spirit, haughtily defended ment on James Nayler, the trial became even against the sectarians, Milton entangled in an endless juridical and passes beyond_sectarianism. Strictly theological discussion, some declaring speaking, the Puritans could but have that the crime committed was idolatry, one poet, an involuntary poet, s maet others seduction, all emptying out be- man, a martyr, a hero, and a victim of fore the house their armory of com- grace ; a genuine preacher, who attaire mentaries and texts. * Seldom has a the beautiful by chance, whilst pursuing
* "Upon the common sense of Scripture," the useful on princ'ple'; a poor tinker, said Major-general Disbrowe, " there are few who, employing inwges so as to be unbut do commit blasphemy, as our Saviour puts derstood by mechanics, sailors, servantt in Mark : sins, blasphemies; if so, then girls, attained, without pretending to it, Lone without blasphemy. It was charged upon eloquence and high art. David, and Eli's son, thou hast blasphemed, Os caused others to blaspheme.'”-Burton's Diary, i. 54
* Guizot, Portraits Politiques, sth ede, 1864
was extreme ir his emotions, and pene
trated to the heart by the sight of phys. Next to the Bible, the book most ical objects, “ adoring” priest, service, widely read in England is the Pilgrim's altar, vestment.
" This conceit grew Progress, by John Bunyan. The reason so strong upon my spirit, that had 1 is, that the basis of Protestantism is but seen a priest" (though never the doctrine of salvation by grace, and sordid and debauched in his life), I that no writer has equalled Bunyan in should find my spirit fall under him, making this doctrine understood. reverence him, and knit unto him; yea,
To treat well of supernatural impres- I thought, for the love I did bear unto sions, a man must have been subject to them (supposing they were the ministhem. Bunyan had that kind of imag- ters of God), I could have laid down at ination which produces them. Power- their feet, and have been trampled upon iul as that of an artist, but more vehe- by them; their name, their garb, and ment, this imagination worked in the work did so intoxicate and bewitcb man without his co-operation, and be- me.” * Already his ideas clung to him sieged him with visions which he had with that irresistible hold whică consti neither willed nor foreseen. From that tutes monomania; no matter how ab moment there was in him as it were a surd they were, they ruled him, not by second self, ruling the first, grand and their truth, but by their presence. The terrible, whose apparitions were sud- thought of an impossible danger terri den, its motions unknown, which re- fied him just as much as the sight of an doubled or crushed his faculties, pros- imminent peril. As a man hung over trated or transported him, bathed him in an abyss by a sound rope, he forgot the sweat of agony, ravished him with that the rope was sound, and he became trances of joy, and which by its force, giddy. After the fashion of English strangeness, independence, impressed villagers, he loved bell-ringing ; when upon him the presence and the action he became a Puritan, he considered the of a foreign and superior master. Bun- amusement profane, and gave it up; yan, like Saint Theresa, was from in- yet, impelled by his desire, he would go fancy "greatly troubled with the into the belfry and watch the ringers. thoughts of the fearful torments of “But quickly after, I began to think, hell-fire,” sad in the midst of pleasures, How if one of the bells should fall ? believing himself damned, and so de- Then I chose to stand under a main spairing, that he wished he was a devil, beam, that lay, overthwart the steeple, supposing they were only tormentors; from side to side, thinking here I might that if it must needs be that I went stand sure ; but then I thought again, hither, I might be rather a tormentor, should the bell fall with a swing, it than be tormented myself.” * There might first hit the wall, and then realready was the assault of exart and bounding upon me, might kill me for bodily images. Under their influence all this beam. This made me stand in reflection ceased, and the man was sud- the steeple-door; and now, tho'ıght 1, denly spurred into action. The first I am safe enough, for if a bell should nov ernent carried him with closed eyes, then fall, I can slip out behind these as down a steep slope, into mad resolu. thick walls, and so be preserved not tags. One day, “ being in the field,with withstanding. So after this I would by companions, it chanced that an ad- yet go to see them ring, but would not de: passed wer the highway ; so I, go any farther than the steeple-door; bo ng a st.ck, struck her over the but then it came into my head, 'How it bais; and having stunned her, I forced the steeple itself should fall?' And open her mouth with my stick, and this thought (it may, for aught I know, plucked her sting out with my fingers, when I stood and looked or.) did conby which act, had not God been merci. tinually so shake my mind, that I durst túl to me, I might, by my desperateness, not stand at the steeple-door any longer, bave brought myself to my end." In but was forced to flee, for fear the stee. bis first approaches to conversion he ple should fall upon my head.”+ Fre
* Grace Abounding to the Chief of Sinners, quently the mere conception of a six 17. † 1bid. 12.
Ibid. $$ 33, 34
• Ibid. 17.
became for him a temptation so invol- |month afterwards, being reproved by a untary and so strong, that he felt upon woman, “ I was silenced, and put to se him the sharp claw of the devil. The cret shame, and that too, as I thought, fixed idea swelled in his head like a before the God of heaven : wherefore, painful abscess, full of all sensitiveness while I stood there, hanging down my and of all his life's blood. “ Now no head, I wished that I might be a little sin would serve but that ; if it were to child again, and that my father might be committed by speaking of such a learr me to speak without this wicked word, then I have been as if my mouth way of swearing; for, thoratit I, I am would have spoken that word whether so accustomed to it, that it is in vain to I would or no; and in so strong a meas. think of a reformation, for that could are was the temptation upon me, that never be. But how it came to pass I often I have been ready to clap my know not, I did from this time forward so hands under my chin, to hold my mouth leave my swearing, that it was a great from opening; at other times, to leap wonder to myself to observe it; and with my head downward into some whereas before I knew not how to muckhill hole, to keep my mouth from speak unless I put an oath before, and speaking.
;".*. Later, in the middle of a another behind, to make my words sermon which he was preaching, he was have authority, now I could without it assailed by blasphemous thoughts ; the speak better, and with more pleasantword came to his lips, and all his power ness, than ever I could before."* These of resistance was barely able to restrain sudden alternations, these vehement the muscle excited by the tyrannous resolutions, this unlooked-for renewal brain.
of heart, are the products of an invol. Once the minister of the parish was untary and impassioned imagination, preaching against the sin of dancing, which by its hallucinations, its mastery, oaths, and games, when he was struck its fixed ideas, its mad ideas, prepares with the idea that the sermon was for the way for a poet, and announces an him, and returned home full of trouble. inspired man. But he ate ; his stomach being charged, In him circumstances develop chardischarged his brain,and his remorse was acter; his kind of life develops his dispersed. Like a true child, entirely ab- kind of mind. He was born in the sorbed by the emotion of the moment, he lowest and most despised rank, a tink. was transported, jumped out, and ran toer's son, himself a wandering tinker, the sports. He had thrown his ball, with a wife as poor as himself, so thai and was about to begin again, when a they had not a spoon or a dish between voice from heaven suddenly pierced them. He had been taught in child. his soul. “ • Wilt thou leave thy sins hood to read and write, but he had and go to heaven, or have thy sins and since “almost wholly lost what he had go to hell ?' At this I was put to an learned.” Education diverts and dis exceeding maze ; wherefore, leaving my ciplines a man; fills him with varied cap upon the ground, I looked up to and rational ideas; prevents hin front heaven, and was as if I had with the sinking into monomania or beir.g ex eyes of my understanding, seen the cited by transport; gives him deterLord Jesus look down upon me, as minate thoughts instead of eccentric being very hotly displeased with me, fancies, pliable opinions for fixed conand as if He did severely threaten me victions ; replaces impetuous images with some grievous punishment for by calm reasonings, sudden resolves by these and other ungodly practices.” + carefully weighed decisions; furnishes Suddenly reflecting that his sins were us with the wisdom and ideas of very great, and that he would certainly others; gives us conscience and self be damned whatever he did, he recommand. Suppress this reason and solved to enjoy himself in the mean this discipline, and consider the poor time, and to sin as much as he could in ignorant working man at his toil; his this life. He took up his ball again, re- head works while his hands work, not commenced the game with ardor, and ably, with methods acquired from an swore louder and oftener than ever. A logic he might have mustered, but with • Grace Abounding, $ 103. # Ibid. § 1a.
* Ibid. $$ ay and al.
dark emotions, beneath a disorderly | ble, in one if those pestifercus pris flow of confused images. Morning ons where the Puritans rotted under and evening, the hammer which he the Restoration. There he is, stil: uses in his trade, drives in with its alone, thrown back upon himself by deafening sounds the same thought the monotony of his dungeon, besieged perpetually returning and self-com- by the terrors of the old Testament, by muning. A troubled, obstinate vision the vengeful out-pourings of the proph. floats before him in the brightness of ets, by the thunder-striking words of the hammered and quivering metal. Paul, by the spectacle of trances and In the red furnace where the iron is of martyrs, face to face with God, now glowing, in the clang of the hammered in despair, now consoled, troubled brass, in the black corners where the with involuntary images and unlookeddamp shadow creeps, he sees the flame for emotions, seeing alternately devil and darkness of hell, and the rattling and angels, the actor and the witness of eternal chains. Next day he sees of an internal drama whose vicissi. the same image, the day after, the tudes he is able to relate. He writes whole week, month, year. His brow them : it is his book. You see now wrinkles, his eyes grow sad, and his the condition of this inflamed brain. wife hears him groan in the night-time. Poor in ideas, full of images, given up She remembers that she has two volto a fixed and single thought, plungec. umes in an old bag, The Plain Man's into this thought by his mechanical Pathway to Heaven and The Practice pursuit, by his prison and his readings, of Piety; he spells them out to console by his knowledge and his ignorance, himself; and the printed thoughts, al circumstances, like nature, make him ready sublime in themselves, made a visionary and an artist, furnish him more so by the slowness with which with supernatural impressions and visthey are read, sink like an oracle into ible images, teaching him the history his subdued faith. The braziers of the of grace and the means of expressing devils—the golden harps of heaven-it. the bleeding Christ on the cross, The Pilgrim's Progress is a manual each of these deep-rooted ideas sprouts of devotion for the use of simple folk, poisonously or wholesomely in his dis- whilst it is an allegorical poem of grace. eased brain, spreads, pushes out and In it we hear a man of the people springs higher with a ramification of speaking to the people, who would renfresh visions, so crowded, that in his der intelligible to all the terrible docencumbered mind he has no further trine of damnation and salvation.* Acplace nor air for more conceptions. cording to Bunyan, we are “children of Will he rest when he sets forth in the
* This is an abstract of the events :-From winter on his tramp? During his long highest heaven a voice has proclaimed vengeance solitary wanderings, over wild heaths, against the City of Destruction, where lives a in cursed and haunted bogs, always sinner
of the name of Christian. Terrified, he abandoned to his own thoughts, the departs
, for fear of being devoured by the fire
up amid the jeers of his neighbours, and inevitable idea pursues him. These which is to consume the criminals., Á helpful neglected roads where he sticks in the man, Evangelist, shows him the right road. A mad, these sluggish dirty rivers which treacherous man, Worldlywise, tries to tum
him aside. His companion, Pliable, who has he crosses on the cranky ferry-boat, followed him at first, gets stuck in the Slougn these menacing whispers of the woods of Despond, and leaves him. He advances at night, when in perilous places the bravely across the dirty water and the slippery livid moon shadows out ambushed mud, and reaches the Strait Gate, where a torms, - all that he sees and hears and points out the way to the Heavenly City.
wise Interpreter instructs him by visible shows, falls into an involuntary poem around He passes before a cross, and the heavy burden she one absorbing idea ; thus it changes of sins, which he carried on his back, is posen. into a vast body of visible legends, hill of I 'ficulty, and reaches a great castle,
ed and falls off. He painfully climbs the steep and multiplies its power as it multi- where watchful, the guardian, gives him is plies its details. Having become a dis- charge to his good daughters Piety and Prese senter, Bunyan is shut up for twelve dence, who warn him and arm him against the
monsters of hell. He finds his road barred by yoars, having no other amusement
one of these demons, A pollyon, who bids him but the Boat of Martyr's and the Bi- abjure obedience to the heavenly King. After