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slightest captiousness, be doubted.* But as if by anticipation, to render Mr. M.'s “certain” as uncertain as possible, Dr. Lingard seems never to have dreamed of Palladius being sent to Ireland at all, but takes it for granted that “ad Scotos” means the Christians of Scotland. (Anglo-Saxon Church, p. 45, 2nd edit.)
C. E, G. [Erratum in Letter i.-Dele " even," last line but one.)
MARTIN OF TOURS. SIR,—The dedication of days and temples to the founders of our faith was a great inconvenience in the times when the reformed church was contending against idolatry. We do not now feel the pressure of that inconvenience, and we feel a satisfaction in paying a reasonable degree of honour to the apostles and authentic martyrs. Our forefathers were in this particular obliged to retain more than, probably, they desired, and certainly more than we can now find satisfaction in.
When the Church of England, in obedience to various considerations, permitted the many obscure and some questionable names which fill our calendar to remain there, she conceded a minor and non-essential point, which she could not have insisted upon without causing the weaker brethren to be offended. But assuredly her founders never meant to pronounce that the historical existence and saintly graces of these people were articles of faith and conformity the controverting of which should be esteemed a violation of public decency. Besides the monstrosity of such a doctrine in itself, their not saying it entitles us to conclude they did not mean it.
We must be careful how we permit any individual, in his own private zeal, to fasten upon us a 40th article, and one of so serious a nature. The articles do not say so much for the calendar as they do for the apocrypha, but dismiss the subject altogether; while the liturgy honour's none but primitive martyrs. If the calendar were any authority in such matters, Dr. Ledwich would have been absolutely estopped from disputing the history of the pretended Patrick, and I should be precluded from lendingt my feeble aid to his views.
Without the Historia Sacra, Vita Martini, and Dialogues published by his bosom-friend and confederate, Sulpicius Severus, the history of Martin would be very scanty in its material, and quite obscure in its moral part. But, possessing them, we can be at no loss to judge what manner of man Martin was, and with what sort of tools he worked. These persons succeeded in inflaming to the highest point the credulous fanaticism of the Gaulish multitude; and Sulpicius Severus also
• Such of your readers as desire it may see both these chronicles in Du Chesne, as above referred to, and in Labbe's Novar. MSS. Bibliotheca, tom. i., ed. Paris, 1657.
+ Which, however, I propose doing once more. And meanwhile, I beg leave to correct the more important of your printer's errata in my last, which arose perhaps from my bad writing. Dele the comma between Gallia and Belgica, for Aloryt read Alvryt, for Iris read Isis, for Boneud read Bonedd, for Trecassentis read Trecassensis.
succeeded in passing himself off upon Jerome (a ready recipient of such delusions) and upon Augustine, who were remote from the scene of his actions. But it is only justice towards the clergy and more enlightened part of the laity in Gaul to say, that they were not all dupes ; and, by his own shewing, some were disposed to regard both him and his patron as charlatans and liars. The emperor Maximus was not the dupe of Martin, although he was obliged to offer incense to the popular idol. If your correspondent is disposed to drink at the source, he will find in Severus much melancholy information concerning the monk, whom our erring ancestors imagined to be a patron to the church which he serves, and its advocate with God.
When the rector of St. Martin's parish reads the narrative of his miraculous interview with the Emperor Valentinian, I think that, notwithstanding the disgust he will feel, the absurdity of it will force a smile from him. But when he comes to the story concerning Briccio of Tours, (Dial. 3, c. 15,) his honest and religious mind will resist all the titillations of levity in the strength of its indignation.
This Briccio was a priest of the Turonian church, who succeeded to the bishopric when Martin died. Martin himself had been raised to episcopacy, not indeed as afterwards were Germanus and Sidonius Apollinaris, by the instrumentality of direct mob violence, but by popular intimidation overpowering the will and judgment of his clergy. After his death, the mob of Tours, inflamed by calumnies which Martin and the Martinists had long before directed against him, and which Gregorius Turonensis (dissembling the quarter from whence they came) admits to have* been utter calumnies, expelled Briccio, and by acclamation raised up first one and then another bishop in his place. It is probable that he was the person upon whom the choice of the clergy, had it been free, would have fallen, when Martin was consecrated. Without pretending here to analyze and comment upon the documents of Martin's life and machinations, I thought your reverend correspondent might find these remarks useful, in appreciating this particular passage of them. It is rather remarkable that St. Martin's successor is commemorated in our reformed calendar as St. Brice on the 13th November; and that may place my respected opponent in some difficulty. The calendar is necessary for the purpose of pointing out to us on what days we are to hold in remembrance St. Stephen, St. Jude, St. John Baptist, &c.; but for purposes such as the present, it is no more than an old almanac. That is the plain-spoken truth of the matter.
There can be no doubt that our indulgence is due to those historical characters whose penitence and amendment of life and manners is recorded in history, as well as their wickedness. But I am not aware of any grounds for supposing that Martin ever repented of his shocking career, or died otherwise than in the fullest perseverance. With respect to his follower, Severus, he was, indeed, overtaken by remorse in his old age, and condemned himself to a voluntary
The specific calumny, by means of which the insurrection was kindled, occurred after his consecration. The general imputations, to which it was adapted, and which Gregory negatives, were of earlier date, and the venom of Martin, Severus, &c.
taciturnity to expiate the sins of his tongue. It is true that his friends, the Martinists of Tours, gave out that the fault of his tongue had consisted in advocating Pelagianism, and nothing else. In so doing, he might have been honest. A* darker stain, tainting his whole life and conversation, was to be obliterated by the aged penitence of Severus; and that it was so, we may well hope. But an honest and correct account of the contrition of Severus would have been the death-blow to Martinism, and could not be expected from Tours. The sound of his palinodia was stifled, and not suffered to come abroad.
Without presuming to judge, in the forbidden sense of that word, we are at liberty to condemn the wicked actions of the men we read of in history. And Martin stands before that ordinary tribunal of hunian opinion, with nothing to mitigate the censure it must pronounce upon him. Of your correspondent's allusions to myself, being irrelevant, and such as I think it is always more judicious to avoid, I say nothing at all.
PLACE OF THE SERMON IN DIVINE WORSHIP. MR. EDITOR,—A correspondent noticed in the last number of the “British Magazine” “ wishes to ask Mr. Newman where those directions of our church are to be found authorizing the introduction of a lecture or sermon between the reading of Scripture and the prayers." Perhaps it will answer your correspondent's purpose if Ī, another nameless correspondent, state what my understanding is of the passage referred to.
Is not allusion made in it to the place of the sermon in the Communion Service, as assigned by the rubric? That service is a whole in itself, and to it the sermon belongs entirely. Now the sermon
• To crown all the enormous contents of his book, and obtain for it a more complete acceptance, he had not scrupled to assert that Martin, some time after his death, appeared to him in a glorified form, patted him kindly on the head, and exhibited the volume of his own life, which he carried in his hand! From whence the poor deluded Gauls had to infer, that the saints in heaven occupy themselves with reading their own lives. But of all the sentences contained in his works, the following is perhaps the most distressing to read :-"I have written nothing but what had been previous ascertained and proved by me; else would I rather be silent, than utter falsehoods.” In the days of his repentant silence, these words must often have presented themselves to his afflicted conscience.
+ The editor hopes this correspondence may lead to a full investigation of the grounds for certain names being left in, and certain others struck out of, our calendar at the Reformation. It is a curious subject.
Can “ H.” prove that the friends of Severus stifled the real nature of his peni. tence, or misrepresented it? Is not asserting that they did so, assuming the whole matter in dispute, and even fixing infamy on Martin of Tours, by an arbitrary hypothesis that Severus had one motive for penitence, and that his friends were guilty of the infamy of assigning another, which they knew to be false? Where can we stop in history on this principle? Perhaps, instead of further controversy on this point, “ H.," who is so well able, will give us a paper or two on the proper mode of writing history, the limits within which conjectures not founded on fact, especially as to men's character, are admissible, and the value to be attached to any history where those limits are transgressed. -Ed.
does in fact come between the ten commandments, epistle, and gospel, and the solemn service of the communion. I conceive the words in question can mean nothing but this, inasmuch as the sermon is not introduced except in the Communion Service, and then it does occur u between the reading of Scripture and the prayers."
It will be said that our custom is not conformable to this “ direction” of the church, for the sermon comes last. But surely the writer appeals to the church's principle and intention, and defends it by “ the example of primitive usage." The word "authorizing" implies the same, the actual “ directions” of the church,“ whether for catechising or for the sermon,” leading to the rule or principle. Perhaps he would farther suggest to the reader that our forefathers' intention is better than our own practice. This, indeed, is not his direct reason for touching on the subject, which on the face of the paragraph was to account for defects in composition in his own sermons which follow; yet it is certainly suggested by the passage. His mode of delivering his lecture on à Saint's day has been adopted “ with a view of making it duly subordinate to the more direct religious duties of the day." Accordingly, “ he has usually confined himself to a few remarks introduced without text.” What is established by custom as the order of our Sunday service must not be altered, though it run counter to the spirit of the church's directions; but when there is no custom, as in the case spoken of, it is surely allowable, instead of eluding, to act as "authorized” by them. Now, as things are, it is a discomfort to some preachers that the sermon does not occupy that modest and subordinate place in Christian worship which it was intended to do, and this feeling may be at the bottom of the paragraph. The usual introductory prayer and text (highly seasonable, indeed, were a sermon the whole of the service, and were the alternative between a sermon with them and without them,) answer no important purpose when the sermon is meant to be but a part of a whole service; rather they seem like an appendage and a kind of set-off to the sermon, instead of uniting it in a dependence on the prayers and lessons which have preceded. We discover the spirit of things in their tendency; the grandiloquent addition to the concluding prayer now in vogue,
as far as it has been agreeable to Thy inspired word,” is but a development of the original act which emancipated the preaching from the prayers. The homilies are evidence of the reformers' intention surely very different from the received practice. The sermons of the primitive church were often expositions of Scripture, commonly of the Psalms or lessons of the day, -often had reference to the festival celebrated, —often did not last above eight, nay, four minutes in delivering. If they were often longer, yet bishops were commonly preachers, who had the authority of office and years, and the times were not those in which worship ran the risk of being undervalued.
It may be asked, how the people would be taught if sermons were not more than ten minutes long. I answer, that I am not dreaming of any change in our Sunday service, nor denying that ten minutes is not enough for eloquence, nor blind to the uses of long sermons,
in the present disuse of catechetical instruction; not at all,--I am but making a remark, and pointing out what seems to me an important principle. What are the right occasions, places, modes, degrees of putting it in practice, is quite another question. Yours, &c., &c.
PREACHING PREVIOUSLY TO MORNING PRAYER.
SIR, -A correspondent in, I think, the November number of the British Magazine,” inquires as to admissibility of a practice of administering the communion and preaching without having previously read the morning prayers. In reply I beg to refer him to the Act of Uniformity (14 Charles II.), printed before the preface of our Common Prayer, wherein he will find it expressly provided and enacted that at all times . . . . when any sermon is to be preached, the Common Prayer and service appointed to be read for that time of the day shall be openly ... read by some priest or deacon in the church, chapel, or place of public worship : ... before such sermon or lecture be preached, and the lecturer then to preach shall be present at the reading thereof."
The next clause excepts the universities. Presuming that your December number would have conveyed a line to him in answer, I forebore to trouble
As such was not the case, you will probably excuse my sending this. I confess I wondered at the question.
And now permit me to put a query or two. Is there any authority for introducing into the Litany, after “all women labouring with child, all sick persons,” the clause “especially those for whom our prayers are desired,” as it stands parenthetically inserted in the prayer for all conditions of men ? When I say authority, I mean is there any warranty for it, -any propriety in the transposition of the sentence from one prayer into another?
And let me ask, while in an interrogatory mood, one question regarding the Rev. Blanco White's “ Poor Man's Preservative against Popery,” (Society for Promoting Christian Knowledge, Tract 252.) What is the meaning of the caveat respecting the former editions of that work contained in the author's address to the reader in 1834, as touching statements, opinions, tendencies? And against whom is directed the passage, p. iv., from “I now perceive that the profession,” to “on those who profess them"? Except on one supposition, it is a plain enigma (if such a thing may be), and Davus sum non (Edipus.
I am, Sir, your most obedient servant, December 21, 1835.
D. A. V. U.S.
SIR,—A correspondent in your November Number, under the signature of “W.D.,” has asked the question- What does the church hold respecting confirmation ? I was in hopes the subject might have been VOL. IX.- Feb. 1836.