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must traverse. To these qualifications few could lay better claim than the Dean of St. Paul's, and no writer of our time could delineate the several phases of Christian history, with greater brilliancy and animation, or with sounder judgment and more solid learning. The period of the Middle Ages has twice before been surveyed by English historians of no common eminence, but we are guilty of no disparagement to them in asserting that Dr. Milman has completed their work. That element of ecclesiastical power and influence, which was an object of scorn and aversion to Gibbon, and of comparative indifference to Hallam, has now, for the first time, by any English Protestant writer, been restored to its true position as the vital centre of medieval society, civilisation, history, and art. The subject of this history is professedly confined to that of Latin Christianity; but as the religious history of man involves in fact his whole history, so that of Latin Christianity is virtually the history of Christianity throughout the world. The essential distinction, however, between the religious developments of the East and West, Dean Milman has seized with happy originality and drawn out with the greatest force and clearness; nor have the fundamental differences of idea, which lay at the root of this diversity, been traced to their source with equal discernment by any preceding writer, or set forth in such masterly relief.

The history of Latin Christianity is the record of every intellectual change which has befallen the speculative East and the practical and politic West. It brings before us the several forms of sacerdotal religion; controversies on subjects which transcend human comprehension, and on others which arise out of every system even of moral philosophy; controversies respecting the constitution of the Divine Nature, controversies on the causes and motives of human actions, on the essential distinctions of matter and spirit, of good and evil. We watch the struggles of conflicting ideas, borrowed, some from the mystic anti-materialism of Zoroaster, some from the bewildering physical science of Egypt; we look on the battle between monasticism and every feeling, impulse, and affection of our common humanity; on the further struggle of Eastern monachism, not only against human appetites and passions, but against almost every exercise of the mind and intellect. We see the Eastern Church contenting itself with endless quarrels for the meaning of a word, while the Western is assailed by savage armies, and in turn taking captive its conquerors. We behold the patriarch of Constantinople the toy and puppet of orthodox or heretic emperors, while the haughty Vicar of the Prince of the Apostles

is setting his feet upon the necks of kings. We follow the missionaries of Rome gathering in their harvest from the chilly climes of England and Germany, of Bohemia and Friesland, while the sword of Abu Bekr and of Omar flashes amidst the myrtle groves of Damascus and the standard of the prophet floats above the hallowed shrine of Mount Zion. We survey centuries of wild and violent enthusiasm, of turbulence, which threatened all society with one common ruin, finding a vent in those strange adventures which identified physical valour with personal devotion. Bursting forth in the first outbreak of resistless fanaticism, the hosts of the Crusaders were borne with a singleness of purpose not unworthy of admiration against the oppressor of Christendom, the Caliph of the false prophet, the polluter of the Holy Places. Then, as in each succeeding age the fire of religious zeal becomes less fierce, each new crusade betrays something more of cool design or double-minded calculations, until that becomes a system which was first evoked by a fiery and irresistible impulse. A crusade against the heretic will confer the same sanctity with a crusade against the infidel; and the name of De Montfort will be held not less illustrious than that of Godfrey or Tancred or St. Louis.

From this turmoil of arms and warfare we pass to the scarcely less vehement tumults of the schools of Western Christendom, those marvellous abodes of indomitable human perseverance, of boundless though misdirected and barren learning. We look upon the astounding monuments of gigantic labour left in their pyramids of tomes on the whole circle of human knowledge, in which every subject of thought is analysed with the most searching anatomy and a systematic precision which seems to clear up every perplexity while in fact it removes none; until these schools are invaded by the Dominican and Franciscan, and the mightiest masters surpassed in their highest dialectical subtleties by the members of this new papal army which professed at first to despise the intellect as much as they professed to despise money; and their disputations are rendered illustrious by the rivalry of Thomas Aquinas and Duns Scotus, of Albert the Great, of William of Ockham, and Alexander Hales.

Mighty, indeed, is the array of names, memorable and familiar, which in the history of Latin Christianity must pass before us:-among the champions of monasticism Jerome and Gregory, Benedict and Bernard and Peter Damiani, Dominic and Francis: in the strife for sacerdotal pre-eminence the representative of Charlemagne humbled before the bowed and drooping form of Hildebrand; and the magnificent Frederic II.

urging a scarcely effectual warfare against the Pope, who had, as fame avers, beheld a hundred winters: the haughty Philip Augustus and the dastardly John of England, the Kings of Arragon and Navarre, trembling at the behests of Innocent III., or resisting in vain the material and spiritual weapons of papal warfare: Simon de Montfort and Raymond of Toulouse, Thomas à Becket and Stephen Langton, Frederick Barbarossa and Conrad the last of the line of Hohenstaufen, John Huss and his betrayer the Emperor Sigismund, Philip the Fair and his victim Du Molay the last Grand Master of the Templars, Berengar and Abelard, Petrarch, Rienzi, Dante,-names great for their success or their misfortunes, for their sanctity or their crimes,-names illustrious in the annals of scholastic theology, of science and art, in poetry and painting,-names celebrated for achievements alike gigantic and useless, or for works of beneficence deserving endless gratitude,-all in their several times and places pass across the historic scene, each with their several associations, grouped amidst those for whom they toiled and suffered, whom they protected or tormented, and to whom they were a blessing or a curse. All, it may without qualification be said, have here received their fitting delineation; all live and act, suffer and triumph before us, so far as the pen of the historian may summon back the departed spirit.

With his wide and generous appreciation of the most various dispositions and the most opposite forms of government, philosophy, or art, it would be vain to expect from the Dean of St. Paul's anything of the language of a partisan; and he will be altogether disappointed who approaches these volumes in the hope of finding arguments or evidence for strong sacerdotal or anti-sacerdotal theories. Evidence is to be found throughout, the clearest and the most forcible, for the Divine origin and the sacred mission of Christianity itself; but none for papal claims and hierarchical pretensions, none for systems which would limit Christianity to the rigid acceptance of dogmatical propositions. It is the happiest omen for the future history, not only of literature, but of thought and religion, when the writer of such a work as this commences his task with the following declaration: I presume not, neither is it the office of the historian, to limit 'the blessings of our religion either in this world or in the world "There is One who will know his own.' As a historian, I can disfranchise none who claim, even upon the slightest grounds, the privileges and hopes of Christianity; repudiate none who do not place themselves without the pale of believers and worshippers of Christ, or of God through Christ.' (Vol. i. p. 9.)

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In the Papacy therefore, as in the growth of scholastic theology, or of its uncompromising foe, the jurisprudence of the middle ages, and in the career of Arnold of Brescia, or Wiclyffe, or Huss, Dean Milman traces the direction and control of a Divine Power, and acknowledges its instrumentality in securing the greatest blessings of religion and knowledge to mankind. But the method of his history has rendered anything like controversial attitude or argument superfluous. The Papacy of the Middle Ages was a power, rising gradually to importance, from an insignificance necessary not only for its growth but its existence, a power kept alive at first by the limited intellectual or practical vigour of its possessors, then gathering strength from controversies and feuds, from factions and schisms elsewhere, from the rivalry of contending patriarchates and the struggles of hostile sovereigns,-a power rising to pre-eminence from dangers which seemed to prelude its utter overthrow, and rendered at once predominant by the withdrawal of that imperial splendour, the accession of which was the death-blow to the ecclesiastical greatness of the Eastern Rome. That wonderful power was consolidated by the desertion of its own temporal master and the invasions of hostile chieftains, by the inroads of Alaric and the devastations of Vandals and Lombards, by the rule of Odoacer and Theodoric; for during these and other perils it pursued its onward course, sometimes by the mere force of moral influence achieving its greatest and worthiest triumphs; more often grasping at extended dominion by deliberate political calculations; sometimes defeated, generally successful; preferring perhaps to avail itself of fair means, yet not altogether averse from resorting to foul ones; waiting tranquilly until vague and ill-defined claims became, through the neglect or the impotence of civil rulers, strong precedents for rigidly defined principles. Even in its greatness were seen also the elements of its weakness and degradation. Checked in its strides towards universal supremacy by the opposition of foreign rulers, yet more by the traditionary Roman ideas which still animated the citizens of the Seven Hills, it was constrained to assume the character of a temporal power, in order to maintain its ascendancy at home. Then followed all the inconsistency and tergiversation, all the fluctuations and confusion of a complicated and tortuous policy; the balancing of hostile states, playing off of one faction against another, the unscrupulousness which turned the arms of the infidel against the refractory nobles or the turbulent populace of Rome,-the worldliness and trickery which sometimes gained its object, yet not unfrequently exposed it to humiliation and contempt.


In the men who wielded this power at one time so majestic, at another so despicable, so lofty or so degraded, so feared or so despised, are seen all the differences which correspond to, or rather which were, in whatever degree, the causes of these vicissitudes. Among them appear names which slander has never aspersed with the imputation of unworthy motives,Innocent I., Gregory the Great, the first and the ninth Leos; others in whom the profession of the same high motives would seem to have been in some degree the result of self-deception, possibly of hypocrisy,-such as Hildebrand and Alexander III.; others, like Innocent III., who followed out a mistaken theory with greater conscientiousness than power, with greater facilities for tormenting mankind than for devising remedies for evils already committed. Nor are there wanting phases of their history more melancholy and more repulsive. Some spread the flames of war over the fairest regions of the earth; some lived as banditti rather than as men of piety and peace. The Papacy has passed through more than one dark age. The infamy of the son of Theodora in the tenth century is well matched by the infamy of John XXIII. in the fifteenth. Rescued by the stern integrity of the German popes from the depths of ignominy into which it had sunk under the minions of Theodora and Marozia, it reached its highest splendour from the pontificate of Gregory VII, to that of the successor of Innocent III. Then followed a time of boundless pretensions, urged by men deficient in moral greatness, the turbulent violence of Innocent IV. (the Genoese Sinibald Fiesco), of Boniface VIII., better known, perhaps, under his former name of Benedetto Gaetani. The Courts of Lyons and Avignon presented the spectacle of Roman popes, selfbanished from their own metropolitan city, reduced to every species of chicanery, in order to escape from the toils in which they were caught,-of successors of St. Peter unable to retain their own patrimony, yet revelling in dissolute luxury in a foreign land, and leaving behind them vast treasures at which the world stood astonished. In this seventy years' banish'ment,' while the miserable Clement V. sacrificed the most splendid order of Christian chivalry to the avarice or the fears of the French King, and yet scarcely succeeded by this sacrifice in shielding from his attacks the memory of his predecessor, there was growing up in the court of Avignon an unbelief more complete, a contempt of all religion and all restraint, altogether deeper than any which was so mercilessly punished in others.

With this array of popes varying from each other in all pos

sible degrees of integrity and iniquity, there was, in truth,

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