Изображения страниц

only one I serve, and it does not bring me in sixty pounds a-year, which is all I have to support a wife and family! Till this year I had five children dependent on me. I have now three. Two of my childreu have been lately settled in the world, and in consequence I involved myself a little.

My wife and myself have always been used to live in a very plain style, in order to be able to pay our way; but for the above reason, we have bills to pay, which it is quite out of our power to do at present, unless we are assisted."



FRANCE. Some of the more odious and oppressive enactments of the bill for the regulation of the press, have been modified or rejected by the chamber of peers; but the government still cling to all they can carry of this absurd project of law, and, as a specimen of the illiberality of their measures, have gone to the length of dismissing from their academical situations some of the most distinguished of their literary countrymen, who have expressed an opinion against their scheme.

Something has at length been done by France, to fulfil her solemn, but hitherto neglected, engagements on the subject of the Slave Trade. A law is in its progress, and appears likely to pass through the two chambers, by which every person cooperating or participating in the Slave Trade, whether as owners of ships, or supercargoes, or underwriters, or captains, or officers, shall be subjected to banishment, and to a fine, applying conjointly to all these parties, equal to the value of the ship and cargo. The captains and officers are to be incapable of serving in any capacity in the naval or commercial marine of France. All others of the crew concerned in the trade, shall be punished with from three to five months' imprisonment; which shall be reduced to fifteen days, if they voluntarily reveal what they know on reaching a port, either to the magistrate in a French port, or to the French Consul in foreign ports. The ship is to be seized and confiscated. And all this is to be exclusive of any inflictions which any of the parties may incur for crimes committed on board the ship, such as kill ing the slaves, or drowning them, &c.

This is without doubt a vast advance in French legislation on this subject; and yet forced labour would have seemed a far more appropriate punishment than banishment, for the miscreant slave-trader. The law was long and earnestly discussed in the chamber of peers; many being

opposed to all change, and bringing forward all the exploded arguments in favour of the trade. The speech of the duc de Broglie, in reply to these reasoners, is a splendid specimen of parliamentary eloquence, scarcely, if at all, inferior to any of the most distinguished speeches which our own annals furnish on that subject. We may hereafter recur to it.

PORTUGAL.-We trust that all cause for serious alarm from the late insurrectionary movements of the anti-constitutionalists is at an end, the invading insurgents having been routed and put to flight. Still, the country is far from being in a tranquil state; and the conduct of Spain continues to be of a very dubious and unsatisfactory character.


The consideration of the important question on the corn laws has been postponed, in consequence of the illness of Mr. Canning, to the first of March; on which day that gentleman, or, if he is not sufficiently restored to health, some other member of the government, will bring before the House of Commons the plan which ministers have agreed upon respecting this vital part of our domestic policy. Lord Liverpool had pledged himself to open the subject on the same day in the House of Lords; but we deeply lament to state, that his lordship has been visited with a severe paralytic seizure, and is not likely again to resume the cares of his anxious and laborious office as prime minister, from which indeed he is stated to have been for some time desirous of retiring. We trust however, from the last accounts, that his life is not immediately in danger. His absence from the House of Lords will be severely felt in the discussions on the corn laws; as his lordship had applied his mind with great diligence to the question, and his weight and influence in the House are greatly needed, to procure it an impartial and enlightened consideration, the prepossessions,

and supposed interests of a large majotity of its members being in favour of a corn monopoly. Lord Liverpool has not yet officially resigned; but, in the probable occurrence of that event, speculation has been active in discussing the several claims of various statesmen to be his successor. Into these speculations we shall not at present enter; but it is highly important that no statesman should be appointed to this high post who is not fully prepared, with whatever partial odium he may be assailed, cordially to follow up the wise and liberal course of policy which the government of the country has for some time been endeavouring to pursue.

Several other highly important questions are about to be discussed in Parliament, particularly that of Catholic emancipation, which is likely to give birth to warm debates in both houses. Government have procured the re-appointment of a committee on emigration. No doubt can exist that the distress of the labouring classes in this country is a subject which loudly calls for the deliberative wisdom of parliament; for the evil is of a kind which our present institutions must progressively aggravate. Mr. Horton, in bringing forward his motion to renew the committee on this subject, mentioned the case of a parish in Sussex, in which the poors' rates nearly equal the rental of the land; and this expense is for the support of persons able and willing to work, but for whom no employment can be found, and whose only resource therefore is emigration, which may be effected with less expense than maintaining them at home. As a palliative we do not deny that emigration may be of some use, especially to the persons who emigrate, and ultimately, by means of the colonies thus planted and peopled, to the country at large; but it is a most inordinately expensive measure, and its effect in alleviating distress at home, unless the whole principle of our poor-law system is changed, will be almost nothing. How much more effective, as a palliative, while it would be attended with no expense, but with immediate and immeasurable advantages, would it be to throw open, to the expansive power of our capital, and to the energy of our merchants and manufacturers, the immense market of British India, containing 100 millions of customers, and which is now sacrificed for the sake of 1800 sugar-planters in the West Indies! Every loom in the kingdom would then, in no long time, be set actively to work; wages would rise, and the effect would

be felt in the comforts of our population from one extremity of the empire to another. And how much more powerful would the operation of such a palliative be if we were admitted to a free intercourse with China, the largest associated population in the world! Remove the fetters on our trade, and you give instant and full employment to our population at home, while you mitigate the sufferings of our unhappy fellow-subjects, the Negro slaves abroad; and you also give yourselves time to devise means for a more thorough investigation and a more effectual repression, if not extinction, of the dreadful evil of pauperism, which no mere palliatives can effectually reach. If we confine ourselves to mere palliatives, and especially to so enormously expensive and inefficient a palliative as emigration, whatever proportion of our redundant labourers we may expatriate, we shall find the same unobviated causes producing the same and worse effects, until the evil becomes too strong for remedy of any kind.

Among other measures about to be brought before Parliament, is a motion by Mr. Buxton respecting the burning of widows in India. We have so frequently urged this afflicting topic upon the consideration of our readers, that we shall not dwell upon it at present. We perceive with pleasure, that it is begining to attract the humane attention of the public. A motion respecting it is before the Court of Proprietors of the East India Company. The county of Bedford some time since petitioned Parliament on the subject; and the city of York has recently done the same; and other petitions, we understand, are in preparation.

The hardship and injustice of the impressment of seamen have again been incidentally noticed in Parliament, and though with no immediate good result, yet it is evident that the cause of humanity gains ground by every fresh discussion. We may say the same respecting corporal punishments in the army and navy, and several other questions."

Our last Number announced, that "death has gone up into our palaces;" and we have just alluded to the illness of two of our most influential statesmen : we have to add the death of two prelates, Dr. Legge, the bishop of Oxford, and Dr. Pelham of Lincoln, the latter in consequence of a cold contracted at the Duke of York's funeral. Dr. Lloyd, the Regius professor of divinity, is to be the new bishop of Oxford, and Dr. Kaye of Bristol is to be translated to Lincoln,

The remaining appointment is not yet filled up. The bishopric of Calcutta also continues vacant. The appoint ment of bishops to the other presidencies of India, a measure to the importance of which we have already more than once adverted, is understood to be still under the consideration of the Government and the Court of Directors of the East India Company.

The Court of Chancery has lately been engrossed with the disgusting details of a protracted suit brought by the Hon. Mr. Wellesley against the Duke of Beaufort, to recover possession of his children. We allude to it only for the sake of recording the result, which involves a principle of great moment, as it concerns the moral welfare of the public. The Lord Chancellor, after an elaborate statement of the case, which occupied several hours, pronounced judgment, that Mr. Wellesley being proved to be maintaining "a gross and iniquitous connexion" with a Mrs. Bligh, his lordship could not allow him to have the care of his daughter (and he would not separate the brothers from the sister), "so long as he held the slightest intercourse with that abandoned woman." His lordship added, with much feeling, that he had a duty to perform, not only to his country but to God, before whose tribunal he

must, at his advanced age, expect very shortly to be summoned, to render an account of his actions; and with this solemn prospect before him, "he would not be the man to hazard the principles of these children."

Our readers will recollect, that at the close of the last session it was agreed that ministers should send out to the different legislatures of the West Indies, the propositions framed in the shape of bills, which it was their desire, and that of Parliament, should be introduced into the slave codes of the colonies. The present month's Anti-slavery Reporter, No. 21, gives a view of what the colonies have done in consequence of this formal recommendation; and it seems to amount to very little, indeed to nothing effectual. We may expect, therefore, that ministers will now be prepared to submit some measure to Parliament, for controuling the contumacy of those knots of slaveholders called legislatures, who take it upon them to resist the united desire of the king, the parliament, and the country at large, to reform their slave-code, and to adopt measures for extinguishing slavery itself.-The Anti-Slavery Reporter is published by Hatchard, and costs only a penny or twopence, according as it extends to half a sheet or a sheet.


AN OLD SUBSCRIBER ; No SUTTEE; V. A.; H. G.; H. M. S. B.; W. T. P.; R. F.; C. L.; J. O. Z.; W. L. B. T.; J. H.; M. C. P.; W. S.; and DIACONUS, are under consideration.

We do not wonder that EUPHEMIA is "puzzled" by such questions as she mentions; and we fear she would be puzzled still more if we attempted to answer them. We recommend her to turn her attention to more simple and practical inquiries.

B. W. is desirous to add to his paper, in the present Number, that he considers Dr. Bellamy of New England's "Dialogues upon the Nature of Love to God, Faith in Christ, and Assurance of a Title to eternal Life," in reference to Marshal on Sanctification and Hervey's "Theron and Aspasio," as containing the best exposition in the language of the Scripture doctrine on the points in question. We would add to his recommendation the late Mr. Scott's excellent "Treatise on Growth in Grace," which is probably more easily accessible to most of our readers.

From inquiries which we have made, we believe that W. H. M.'s construction of the Mortmain Act is incorrect; and that bequests of stock may be given by will to charitable societies, if not directed to be laid out in land.

D. R. is very reasonably at a loss to know why R. P. B. in our last Number (p. 26, col. 2. last two lines) attributes a maxim of Solomon to St. Paul.

We do not receive papers on the plan S. G. proposes.

We have forwarded J. E.'s letter to the secretary of the Society to which he refers, and are happy in learning that the occasional statements in our pages, respecting that charity, have induced the benevolent lady he mentions to notice it among her legacies.

We have no objection to X. Y. C. K.'s quoting the "short passages" he alludes to.



No. 303.]

MARCH, 1827. [No. 3. Vol. XXVII.


For the Christian Observer,


SIAN CONFessions.

ONSIDERABLE attention has of late been attracted towards the various Confessions of the Protestant Churches of Europe. These venerable documents have been closely catechised, as to their testimony respecting various subjects which divide the members of the Reformed religious communities of Christendom, whether it be the five celebrated doctrinal points, or questions of church discipline, or the books included by them in the sacred canon. But among these formularies the most ancient of them all, and that which has formed the ground-work of several, if not all, of the others, and which in a particular manner has been made use of by the compilers of the Thirtynine Articles of the Church of England, namely, the original Waldensian Confession of faith, dated in the year 1120, has been singularly neglected. The document is not long, and deserves transcription. It is as follows:

"Article 1. We believe and firmly hold all that which is contained in the twelve articles of the symbol, which is called the Apostles' Creed, accounting for heresy whatsoever is disagreeing, and not consonant to the said twelve articles.

"Article 11.-We do believe that there is one God, Father, Son, and Holy Spirit.

"Article III.-We acknowledge for the holy canonical Scriptures, the books of the Holy Bible, namely, CHRIST. OBSERV. No. 303.

The books of Moses called Genesis, Exodus, Leviticus, Numbers, Deuteronomy; Joshua; Judges; Ruth; 1 Samuel; 2 Samuel; 1 Kings; 2 Kings; 1 Chronicles; 2 Chronicles; Ezra; Nehemiah; Esther; Job; Psalms; The Proverbs of Solomon; Ecclesiastes, or the Preacher; The Song of Solomon; The Prophecy of Isaiah, Jeremiah; The Lamentations of Jeremiah; Ezekiel; Daniel; Hosea; Joel; Amos; Obadiah; Jonas; Micah; Nahum ; Habakkuk; Zephaniah; Haggai; Zachariah; Malachi.--Here follow the books Apocryphal, which are not received of the Hebrews; but we read them (as saith St. Jerome, in his Prologue to the Proverbs) for the instruction of the people, not to confirm the authority of the doctrine of the church; namely, Esdras; Tobit; Judith; Wisdom; Ecclesiasticus; Baruch, with the Epistle of Jeremiah; Esther, from the tenth chapter to the end; The Song of the three Children in the Furnace; The History of Susanna; The History of the Dragon; 1 Maccabees; 2 Maccabees. Here follow the books of the New Testament: The Gospel according to St. Matthew, Mark, Luke, John; The Acts of the Apostles; The Epistle of St. Paul to the Romans; 1 Corinthians; 2 Corinthians; Galatians; Ephesians; Philippians; Colossians; 1

Thessalonians; 2 Thessalonians; 1 Timothy; 2 Timothy; Titus ; Philemon; The Epistle to the Hebrews; The Epistle of St. James; The First Epistle of St. Peter; The Second Epistle of St. Peter; The First Epistle of St. John; The Second Epistle of St. John; The S

Third Epistle of St. John; The. Epistle of St. Jude; The Revelation of St. John.

"Article IV. The books abovesaid teach this, that there is one God, almighty, all-wise, and allgood, who has made all things by his goodness; for he formed Adam in his own image and likeness, but that by the envy of the devil, and the disobedience of the said Adam, sin has entered into the world, and that we are sinners in Adam and by Adam.

"Article v.-That Christ was promised to our fathers who received the law, that so knowing by the law their sin, unrighteousness, and insufficiency, they might desire the coming of Christ, to satisfy for their sins, and accomplish the law by himself.

"Article vi.-That Christ was born in the time appointed by God the Father. That is to say, in the time when all iniquity abounded, and not for the cause of good works; for all were sinners: but that he might shew us grace and mercy, as being faithful.

"Article VII.-That Christ is our life, truth, peace, and righteousness; also our pastor, advocate, sacrifice, and priest, who died for the salvation of all those that believe, and is risen for our justification.

"Article VIII.— -In like manner, we firmly hold, that there is no other mediator and advocate with God the Father, save only Jesus Christ. And as for the Virgin Mary, that she was holy, humble, and full of grace; and in like manner do we believe concerning all the other saints, namely, that, being in heaven, they wait for the resurrection of their bodies at the day of judgment.

"Article IX.-Item, we believe that, after this life, there are only two places; the one for the saved, and the other for the damned; the which two places we call paradise and hell, absolutely denying that purgatory invented by antichrist, and forged contrary to the truth.

"Article x.-Item, we have always accounted as an unspeakable abomination before God, all those inventions of men, namely, the feasts and the vigils of saints, the water which they call holy; as likewise to abstain from flesh upon certain days, and the like; but especially their masses.

"Article XI.- -We esteem for an abomination and as antichristian, all those human inventions which are a trouble or prejudice to the liberty of the spirit.

"Article XII.-We do believe that the sacraments are signs of the holy thing, or visible forms of the invisible grace, accounting it good that the faithful sometimes use the said signs or visible forms, if it may be done. However, we believe and hold, that the abovesaid faithful may be saved without receiving the signs aforesaid, in case they have no place nor any means to use them.

"Article XIII.-We acknowledge no other sacrament but Baptism and the Lord's Supper.

"Article XIV. We ought to. honour the secular powers by submission, ready obedience, and paying of tributes."

Since the date of this simple and venerable exposition of faith, the evangelical churches of the Piedmontese Valleys have issued other documents, in reply to the accusations of their enemies, and for the edification of their own members. The chief of these is the Confession of 1655; a translation of which, from a manuscript at Cambridge, may be found in Mr. Gilly's "Excursion." This Confession consists of thirtythree articles; to which is added a peroration, in which the compilers remark, that

"For a more ample declaration of our faith, we do here reiterate the same protestation which we caused to be printed in 1603; that is to say, that we do agree in sound doctrine with all the Reformed Churches of France, Great Britain, the Low Countries, Germany, Switzerland,

« ПредыдущаяПродолжить »