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make the proposed secular use of the funds of the Church; but I dispute its policy and propriety Grant that the present religious appropriation of ecclesiastical property has been proved to be an evil, it has not been proved that all such appropriation must be so. As yet, this property is “ corban ;"_and so let it remain. It was once employed in a form different from the present, and failed : admit that it has failed again,-still, this does not forbid that some other mode should be tried, before the possibility of using it to any good purpose be given up as utterly hopeless.' Fiat Justitia, pp. 90–92.
We have now taken a hasty review of the fourfold controversy, with a view to shew the present aspect and position of polemical affairs between the Church as by law established' and the Dissenters, that the real objects of the contest may be a little better understood. Combatants are always more furious in the dark. Should we at all have succeeded in rectifying some prevailing mistakes, partly arising from the ambiguities of language, partly from unquestioned sophisms, we shall at least have subserved the cause of truth; and the tendency of all truth is to union. On the other hand, the spirit of union would lead to the discovery of truth. To cite once more the pamphlet of “Fiat Justitia," (which we must again commend to the attention of all our readers.) . Love in the heart would become light in the intellect. We • should feel ourselves perpetually approaching to greater uni
formity. In proportion as we have more of that visible oneness which will for ever be seen in the Church in heaven, we shall display less of that diversity of sentiment which hitherto has dis
tinguished and often distracted the Church upon earth. And contracted it too. “O si animis nostris insideret hæc cogitatio, • hanc legem nobis esse propositam, ut non magis dissidere in
ter se possint filii Dei, quam regnum coelorum dividi! Quanto rin colenda fraterna benevolentia essemus cautiores ?' *
Art. II. The History of Charlemagne ; with a Sketch of the State
and History of France from the Fall of the Roman Empire, to the Rise of the Carlovingian Dynasty. By G. P. R. James, Esq.
8vo. pp. xviii. 510. London, 1832 THE time is gone by, we hope for ever, when any passionate
I admiration could be awakened by the recital of the deeds of conquerors, the men who have made the world as a wilderness, and destroyed the cities thereof." We are afraid that the present age is growing so over-wise as scarcely to admire any thing. There seems to be spreading through society, if we may so speak, an intellectual democrasy, which is as unfavourable to the pro
* Calvin. Com. on Eph. iv. 4.
duction of greatness as to the due influence of great men and great names. That the world have ceased to 'wonder after the
beast and to worship the dragon ', is a matter for rejoicing; but nothing admirable can be expected from an age that admires nothing." The nil admirari tone of feeling is allied to an indolence of mind and an insipidity of character, which give no promise of excellence.
Biography, whose proper office it is to hold up exemplars greater than ourselves, has become a mere gossip,-a statemourner, hired out on funeral occasions when we wish the world to know how much we bewail our friends,-an antiquary, rummaging registers and tomb-stones for obscure dates of obscure transactions,—or a common slanderer, labouring to bring down all that passes for excellent to the level of the vulgar. This sort of literary portrait-painting has become so cheap, that we must needs have the likeness of every body; but in the mean time, the art languishes. True biography is a study from the model.
The present volume, however, cannot be considered as belonging to biography: it is, as to its subject at least, purely historical. The life of Charlemagne is the history of an empire, which, like that of Alexander, of Timour, and of Napoleon, was strictly personal, commencing and ending with the individual, and standing out alone, in the annals of the period, with the distinctness and singleness of one great event. Charlemagne was the heir of a monarchy and the father of monarchs; but, in his empire, he had neither predecessor nor successor. He was the first who united Germany under one sceptre; yet, he can scarcely be considered as the founder of the Germanic empire, which formed a part only of the dominions of the Frankish Conqueror, and was subsequently alienated from his family, till, after a vacancy of
seventy-four years', the first German king who assumed the title of emperor, was Otho I. A.D. 962. With more propriety he might be considered as the real founder of the greatness of the French monarchy; in less than seventy years, however, the Normans precipitated the fall of his race. Under Charlemagne, the empire of the Franks extended from the Ebro to the Elbe or the Vistula, and from Beneventum to the Eyder, comprising twothirds of the western empire of Rome; but, under his successor, the kingdoms of France and Germany were for ever separated.
Great empires would have been great blessings to mankind, could they have been rendered permanent; since they have almost uniformly succeeded to a state of enfeebling anarchy, that rendered conquest at once comparatively easy, and, amid all its horrors, to a certain degree beneficent. But all empires founded upon conquest, contain the seeds of dissolution, because, to employ a fine remark quoted by Gibbon with approbation, all conquest must be ineffectual, unless it could be universal, since the enhance the value of the edition. In the ‘ Introduction,' as Mr. Hanbury styles his preliminary remarks, there is comprised more controversial matter than will be palatable to many of the admirers of Hooker ; nor are we prepared to vouch for the cogency or good taste of all and every thing contained either in the Introduction or the Annotations. But so admirably has he acquitted himself of his task upon the whole, that all parties must award to him their thanks; and for Hooker's sake, the most captious Episcopalian must forgive the “Independency' of his honest and indefatigable Editor. These volumes must find a place in every well-chosen clerical library.
As Mr. Hanbury has done us the honour to cite from our pages * an encomium upon this noble performance, masterly in every thing but its reasoning, it is the less necessary that we should now expatiate upon the merits and beauties of Hooker's writings, in order to guard ourselves against the imputation of underrating him. It is no disparagement to his character to affirm, that his forte did not lie in polemics ; that his style is more persuasive than his reasoning ; that his greatness is that of the preacher, rather than of the controvertist; and that the finest passages in his writings are those in which he forgets the disputant and the partizan, and discourses of justification with the meekness of apostolic wisdom, or dwells with rapt Hevotion upon the glory of the Saviour. It would have been well, it Hooker and his antagonists had alike borne in mind, on all occasions, the truth so beautifully expressed in his Preface to the Ecclesiastical Polity; that there will come a time when three words uttered
with charity and meekness, shall receive a far more blessed re' ward, than three thousand volumes written with disdainful sharpness of wit.'
What did the “ Ecclesiastical Polity” effect towards the determination of the great controversy ? Absolutely nothing. What single point has been adjusted by all the learning, logic, and sharpness of wit of the combatants on either side,- of Hall and Milton, Parker and Owen, Stillingfleet and Alsop? Whatever good results may attend the agitation of religious controversy, the accommodation of opinions would not seem to be one of those benefits. More than two centuries have elapsed since Hooker flourished, and, though great changes have since passed upon Church and State, the debate survives, which then employed the master spirits of their age, and is as tenaciously maintained, with as little prospect of a settlement, as ever. It has received some important modification of its character, however, from the altered circumstances of society and the peculiar spirit of the present
* Eclect. Rev. Vol. XIII. p. 254. (March, 1820.)
times, which have mingled fresh elements of polemic strife with the original questions.
The ecclesiastical controversy between the Church of England and the Dissenters, is of a fourfold nature. It relates, 1. to the question of Church authority; 2. to the polity or constitution of the Church : 3. to matters of ritual ; and 4. to the Church as an establishment, and the subject of tithes. There is also a doctrinal controversy ; but this subsists as much within the Church, as between the Pelagian clergy and the evangelical Dissenters. We shall therefore confine our remarks at present to the actual state of the controversy which may be properly styled ecclesiastical.
I. With regard to the first point, Church authority, once the grand hinge upon which the whole controversy between the • Church and the Dissenters turned, in contending against it now, we are combating a nonentity. It has no existence except in the twentieth Article and in the fond imaginations of churchmen. The authority claimed in controversies of faith, was originally a forged authority *; and the only ecclesiastical body by which it could have been exercised, was the Convocation, which has long been suppressed. The Thirty-nine Articles were originally articles agreed to by the whole clergy :' it is by the State that they have been authoritatively imposed. The Church having determined that they are true, the State decreed that they
: * Mr. Hanbury has a curious note upon this point, which we may transcribe as a specimen of his illustrations. 66The people of England must have been profoundly ignorant in Queen Elizabeth's time, when a forged clause added to the Twentieth Article of the English creed passed unnoticed till about forty years ago . In the act xiiith Eliz. an. 1571, confirming the Thirty-nine Articles, these Articles are not engrossed, but referred to as comprised in a printed book, entitled, Articles agreed to by the whole clergy in the Convocation holden at London 1562. That clause, The Church hath power to decree rites or ceremonies and authority in Controversies of Faith,' is not in the Articles referred to; nor the slightest hint of any authority with respect to matters of Faith. In the same year 1571, the Articles were printed both in Latin and English precisely as in the year 1562 ; but soon after came out spurious editions, in which the clause was foisted into the Twentieth Article, and continues so to this day. A Forgery so impudent would not pass at present.” Sketches of the History of Man. By the Hon. Henry Home, of Kames, 1774, Book I. sk. 4. § 1. “It is certain that it never was composed by, or exhibited in manuscript to, a Convocation. Such a power might not have been authoritatively claimed by the Church, lest offence should be taken at a time of general irritation on the subject of Ecclesiastical Jurisdiction.” The Christian Remembrancer, April 1829, p. 227.' Vol. I. p. xxix. .
should be believed. In the same way, the Church having determined a man to be a heretic, the State ordered him to be burned alive. It was by the power of the State, but the act of the Church. In fact, the power to decree or legislate, and the executive power, are alike political; and the application of political power to the determination of truth, the attempt to decide by political authority what is true and worthy to be believed, is not only criminally unjust; it is a political blunder. The time, however, has passed away in this country, in which such power and authority could be exercised by either Church or State. The clergy of the present day would be as little disposed to submit to a new decree in matters of faith, or to have their controversies terminated by authority, as were the old Puritans. No new rite or ceremony will ever be imposed, because the power to impose is gone. It was always an illegitimate power, foreign from the spirit of our laws; a usurpation, on the part of a single estate, of prerogatives which can be lawfully exercised only by the entire Constitutional Legislature. It is now at an end; -not in mere abeyance, but abolished. The repeal of the Test Act was the coup de grace to the dying monster. All that remains to be done is, to repeal the Twentieth Article itself, as both a forgery and a fiction, which can no longer impose upon any one. It is scarcely worth while for the Dissenters to waste another word in demonstrating, that the Church has no power to decree rites or ceremonies, no authority in controversies of faith ; there being no power in this country but that of the Civil Magistracy and Legislature, no authority in matters of faith but the Bible only, which contains the whole religion of Protestants.
2. The second branch of the controversy relates to the polity or framework of the Church itself. And here, again, it is most remarkable, how completely the subject of debate has been taken out of the hands of the Congregational Dissenters, by other parties, themselves Episcopalians. It is well known that the main objections of the old Nonconformists were directed, not against Episcopacy, so much as against Prelacy; not against the primitive notion of Diocesan rule, so much as against a secular hierarchy and that ‘metropolitical governance' which, Dr. Barrow admits, was introduced by human prudence.' It is for prelacy as 'twined' with nobility, in the second wreath of the threefold
cable of the State,' that Hooker most passionately pleads ;respecting which he complains, that this chief ornament of the commonwealth, " Prelacy, the temperature of excesses in all
estates, the glue and soder of the public weal, the ligament which tieth and connecteth the limbs of this body politic each 'to other, hath, instead of deserved honour, all extremity of dis'grace.' (Vol. III. pp. 202, 4.) The causes of that disgrace which he bewails, he with singular boldness exposes. In go