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great men who favoured the Lollards, and threatened them with immediate death, if they gave any further encouragement to heretical preachers. Intimidated by these threats, they complied with the king's desire, and withdrew their protection.

Several of the Lollard preachers, discouraged by this defection of their patrons, soon after recanted their opinions, and returned into the bosom of the church. Thomas Arundel, archbishop of York, who was a most violent enemy to the Lollards, obliged those in his province who recanted, to take the following curious oath, which I give in the original language and spelling : "I--, before you, worshipful fader and lord archbishop of Yhork, and your clergy, with my free will and full avysed, swere to God and to all bis seyntes, upon this holy gospel, that fro this day forthword, I shall worship images, with praying and offering unto them, in the worship of the saints, that they may be made after; and also, I shall never more despise pylgremage, ne states of holy chyrche, in no degre. And also I shall be buxum to the laws of holy chyrche, and to yhowe as to myn archbishop, and myn other ordinaries and curates, and keep the laws up my power and meyntein them. And also, I shall never more meyntein, ne techen, ne defenden, errors, conclusions, ne techeng of the Lollards, ne swych conclusions and techengs that men clopeth Lollards doctrine; ne shall her books, ne swych books, ne hem or ony suspect or diffamed of Lollardary, receyve or company with all, willingly, or defend in tho matters; and if I know any swych, I shall, with all the hast that I may, do yhowe, or els your nex officers, to wyten, and of ther bokes, &c.”*

* Collier's Ecclesiastical History, Vol. I. p. 598-9. Wood's History of Oxon, 190—192. Lewis's Life of Wickliff, Angiia Sacra, tom. 2. p. 121. Walsingham, page 201-205. Biographia Britannnica, Art. Wickliff. Spelman's Council. tom. 2. p. 629—636, Henry's Great Britain, Vol.VIII. 8vo. b. 4. ch. 2. sect. 2.

The kingdom of Bohemia is, in point of territorial surface, the most elevated ground, the most mountainous, and by nature the strongest in Germany. Its inhabitants too have ever been distinguished by the loftiness of their spirit, and the vigour and success of their struggles for civil and religious liberty. The country is almost surrounded by the mountains of the famous Hyrcanian forest, whose sides, broken into many sloping ridges, intersect this lofty and spacious amphitheatre, and form a landscape bold, various, and of great beauty. The metropolis of the country is Prague, a city of great extent, stretching along the banks, and on either side of the river Mulda, adorned with many sumptuous edifices, and particularly two strong castles, one of which was the residence of the ancient Bohemian kings. The ancient inbabitants are represented by cotemporary historians, as a people of a ruddy complexion, and of enormous stature and muscular strength; in their dispositions intrepid, fierce, proud, quick in resenting injuries, of a haughty deportment, lovers of a rude magnificence and pomp, and naturally addicted to revels and intein perance. The native language of Bohemia is the Sclavonic, which also appears to have been the mother tougue of the Tartars, and their offspring the Turks, and of all the nations inhabiting those regions which extend from the northern parts of Russia to Turkey in Europe. *

The authority of the church of Rome was never so great and general as entirely to banish from the nations of Europe a spirit of inquiry, or the love of knowledge. During the thickest darkness of the middle ages, a star appeared here and there in the firmament, which reflected the light of ancient times, and formed a presage, that although the sun of science was set, it would return to en

Namely, Russia, Poland, Lithuania, Hungary, Transylvania, Scla. vonia, Croatia, Istria, Wallachia, &c. &c. See Dr. Watson's History of Philip III, King of Spain, b. vi.

lighten bewildered nations. We have seen that so early as the eighth century, Claude of Turin, sowed the seeds of reformation in the vallies of Piedmont, whence they were gradually transplanted into other countries. In the thirteenth century, the Waldenses or Albigenses, names almost indiscriminately applied to the disciples of Claude, were multiplied throughout France to an astonishing degree; and when scattered by the persecuting power of Rome, they were driven into Bohemia, Livonia, and Poland, in the former of which places we learn that there were no less than eighty thousand of them at the commencement of the fourteenth century.

We are informed by Sleidan, that the Bohemians were divided, on the article of religion, into three classes, or sects. The first were such as acknowledged the Pope of Rome to be head of the church, and vicar of Jesus Christ; the second were those that received the eucharist in both kinds, and in celebrating mass, read some things in the vulgar tongue, but in all other matters differed nothing from the church of Rome; the third were those who went by the name of Picards or Beghurdi— these called the Pope of Rome and all his party antichrist, and the whore that is described in the Revelation, (ch. xvii.) They admitted, says he, of nothing but the Bible, (as the ground of their doctrine); they chose their own priests and bishops, denied marriage to no man, performed no offices for the dead, and had but very few holidays and ceremonies.* It is obvious, therefore, that the latter class alone were the genuine Waldenses, and that the second were a species of dissenting-conformists, differing but little from our English episcopalians. It is proper the reader should keep this distinction clearly in view; he will otherwise fall into a mistake which is very prevalent, respecting the prin

Sleidan's History of the Reformation, b. iii. p. 53.

ciples of John Huss and Jerome of Prague, who are generally supposed to have belonged to the sect of the Waldenses, though, in fact, they ranked with the second class mentioned by Sleidan, and never gave up the communion of the church of Rome. They were in Bohemia what Wickliff was in England, members of the established church, dissatisfied with its corruptions, and strenuous advocates for a reform both in its doctrine and discipline, like many of the evangelical clergy in our day, but without the virtue of dissenting from its communion, and of bearing a public and decided testimony to its antichristian spirit and constitution. The whole of the history of these Reformers, which is so circumstantially given by L'Enfant, in his history of the council of Constance, and with such demonstrable impartiality, affords unquestionable proof of the truth of this observation. *

When or by whom the Gospel was first preached in Bohemia, is a very doubtful point. That Paul preached the Gospel in Illyricum, and that Titus visited Dalmatia, are things capable of proof from Rom. xv. 19.—2 Tim. iv. 10. And hence the Bohemians infer, that it was preached in all the countries of Sclavonia in the first ages of Christianity. t They say that St. Jerome, a native of Illyricum, translated the Scriptures into his native tongue, and that all the nations of Sclavonian extraction use that translation to this day, just as the Latin church use the Vulgate; and further, that their bishops and martyrs are mentioned in the early ages of the chureh. But whatever of truth there may be in this, it is certain that Bohemia partook of the general corruption, and was immersed in the darkness of superstition, when Waldo and his friends. sought an asylum in that kingdom, and in the year 1176 formed a colony at Saltz and Laun, on the river Eger. These Waldenses found the Bohemians tenacious of the rites and ceremonies of the Greek church, which are scarcely less superstitious than those of the church of Rome; but they endeavoured to convince them of the defects of their religious exercises, and introduced among them the knowledge of the christian faith in its purity, according to the word of God.* Popery was not fully established in Bohemia till the fourteenth century, and then not by the consent of the Bohemians, but by the power and artifice of the Emperor Charles IV. Two of his chaplains endeavoured to persuade his Majesty to curb the Pope and reform the church, but they were both banished for their officious zeal. One of them, whose name was Janovius, and had studied at Paris, being a person of piety and erudition, was a very hearty friend to reform, and both preached and published against the antichristian hypocrisy of the times ; but as he knew the world, and, by residing at court, thoroughly understood the motives and views of great men, he comforted his friends with these remarkable words just before he expired. “The fury of the enemies of truth now prevails against us, but it will not always be so: a mean people will arise without sword or power, and against them they will never be able to prevail.” A saying full of wisdom, and confirmed by the experience of ages; for reformation of abuses rarely proceeds from those that are in the possession of power. By the banishment of these two eminent men, the voice of reform was silenced. Ignorance, profligacy, and vice, prevailed amongst all orders of men in the national church : the inquisition was introduced for the purpose of enforcing despotism in the civil government, and uniformity of opinion in matters of religion. The consequence was, that

* History of the Council of Constance, Vol. I. passim. + Crantz's History of the Bohemian Brethren, p. 13.

* Paul Stransky de Repub, Bohem, p. 272.

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