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the walls, pillars, and arches : just following inscription: “A. D. 1790, as our reformers wisely retained a I, John, bishop of Centuriæ connational church establishment and secrated this chapel and this altar, in many rites and usages which modern honour of the blessed Virgin Mary, innovators wish they had utterly sub- St. Peter the Apostle, and St. Biriverted. The result of the bishop's nus and St. Swithun, confessors and labours was, that he converted a Saxon bishops ; and I enclosed in the alcathedral into a Gothic, with a skill tars the relics of St. Pius and St. which has been admired for ages Constantius, martyrs, and of St. Seby all beholders; and, though the vera and St. Victoria, virgins and fabric, with its previous and subse- martyrs, &c. &c.” Well, thought I, quent alterations, is a prodigious pile though all is not right or scriptural of various styles and orders, such as or enlightened among us Protestants; no man would build de novo; yet very far from it, and the greater our its antiquity, its massiness, its pic- guilt and shame; yet we have no inturesque beauty, its variety, and its congruities or superstitions like this. convenience and utility, would for. If a learned prelate, in the very heart bid that any man of taste or feeling of England, can collocate in a solemn would wish to raze it, and build it dedication, the Virgin Mary, St. Peter anew. Now I would say the same the Apostle, and Birinus and Swi. of our church: I take it as a whole, thun bishops of Winchester, and can with all the dilapidations and repairs gravely and religiously affirm that of ages : a new one might be less the shreds, patches, hairs, bones, exposed to minute criticims, but or beads, which he placed in the would it, as a vast edifice, combine year 1792, in a Popish altar in that more of solidity and utility ? Let us city, are genuine relics and remains cleanse it; let us repair its breaches; of the individuals known in the lelet us remove whatever is inconsist- gends under the names of Pius, Conent with its intended object; but let stantius, Severa, and Victoria, I can us retain its massy strength, its readily credit the most extraordinary scriptural sanction, and its beauty of stories which I hear of the superstiholiness. Sure I am, that Christian- tions of uneducated Papists, and the ity would not gain any thing by sub- mummery of Irish stations, and Holy verting it, and giving us in its stead Wells. I must presume that the bishop some flimsy modern structure, desti- of Centuriæ, (better known as Dr. tute of every thing of grace, orna- Milner, the zealous antiquary and hisment, or solidity.
torian of Winchester,) believed what But our church, repeat our oppo
he inscribed; but then what oblinents, is Popish. As well may they quity of intellect must the Church of say that Wyckham's Gothic arches Rome superinduce upon its votaries, are Saxon, because they were Saxon before a man of learning and acute before he re-modelled them. I re- investigation could credit such fables ? member I was one day musing But still, it is rejoined, you are among the antiquities of Winchester popish; not, indeed, in this particular upon this objection of our church matter of saints and relics, but in being Popish, when my attention was your whole system of discipline and arrested, and my reverie broken, by worship. Is not your cathedral service, a beautiful ancient arch which had for example, popish; a direct relic of been placed with much good taste gorgeous barbarism, and a direful at the entrance to a modern Gothic offence against Christian simplicity ? edifice, which proved to be the Ro- Now the simplest answer is, to shew man-Catholic chapel, erected under what a Protestant cathedral would the fostering care of Bishop Milner. be if converted into a Papal edifice. I pass over the usual blasphemous There would be shrines, and sainted emblem of the Divine Trinity and relics, and sacrificial priests, and an other Papal symbols, just to copy the alleged real sacrifice, and mortuary
prayers, and penance*, and I know not pulpit of a cathedral or a village how many other forms of superstition. church. For the benefit of these obFor this is the very character of jectors, you might describe what this Popery, which is like its own miserere very cathedral of Winchester was in seats in the stalls of our cathedrals, the days of Popery. I will try to which Protestantism turns down and sketch the picture, faintly indeed, cushions, seeing no merit in being but not inaccurately. Think of the kept awake in the service of God by magic of tracery vaulting, spreading no better motive than that if you columns, shelving buttresses, tapering sleep you will fall and lacerate your pinnacles, canopied niches, statuary nose. No, I will not admit that friezes and corbels, ramified mullions, there is any thing really popish in and historical windows. Think of the our most splendid Protestant worship, shrines and tombs, many beautiful though a popish heart can make any even now amidst their dilapidations. thing so. Choral singing does not There lies, if old chroniclers say convert vernacular Christian prayers true, Lucius, the first Christian king and praises into unintelligible Latin of Britain ; there repose Saxon and formularies fraught with superstition Norman kings, queens, and princes and false doctrine; nor do a few in multitudes ; Edgars, Emmas, maces and vestments forbid the ut- Ethelreds, Ethelwolphs, Egberts, most simplicity of Christian truth Edreds, Edmunds, Canutes, and in a Protestant pulpit, be it the Hardicanutes, many of whose bones
tossed abroad in promiscuous heaps • A volume might be written on pe- by self-styled Reformers*, who made
Popery was a religion alternately of lax indulgence and unrelenting severity. Her first aim was to secure implicit * I do not mean political reformers, blind obedience to her dictates; and to but so-called religious reformers, who this her clergy were trained from their followed in the wake of better men, as infancy, so as to lose all volition before false reformers ever do, for the love of they arrived at man's estate. In early mischief and plunder. If I had not retimes, the discipline of the cloister was stricted myself to conclude my remarks very severe, and corporal punishment was in the present letter, I should perhaps freely inflicted for slight deviations from have inflicted upon you a few pages about the strictest rules. In the eleventh cen- Reformers and Reformation in church tury an abbot complained to Anselm, and state, as illustrated by the annals of Archbishop of Canterbury, that with all your cathedral. We would have seated his severity the boys under his care still ourselves on the tombs of Bishop Morley made very indifferent men.
• You are and Bishop Hoadly, who sleep very continually correcting the boys,' replied quietly side by side in the nave, and I Anselm, ' and what sort of men do they doubt not we should have learned some make when they grow up?' •0, very useful lessons by the retrospect. The stupid, beastly men,' answered the abbot. name of Hoadly is itself a volume. • No very good recommendation of your There he lies, with the mitre and the cap mode of education,' answered Anselm, of liberty sculptured upon his tomb; the • if out of men you make them beasts.' republican wand and the pastoral crozier • But, now, is that our fault ?' inquired the in saltire, and Magna Charta and the New abbot. We try by all means to force them Testament reclining on each other. But to become better; yet we cannot do it.' in justice to those who placed them there, • You force them!' said Anselm. “Tell we ought to remember that Bishop Hoadme now, my dear abbot, if you should ly lived, died, and was entombed long plant a tree in your garden, and close it before the French Revolution, which has up tight on all sides, so that it could not rendered the cap and wand of liberty the put forth its branches in any direction; emblems of all that is unjust, cruel, bloodandthen, after some years, shouldtake away thirsty, and anarchical. I shall never forthe enclosure ; what sort of a tree do you get the shudder of horror wbich I saw suppose it would be ? certainly, a very thrill through the spectators in the Guilduseless tree, with little crooked branches hall of Bristol, nearly twenty years ago, twisted into each other. And whose when at a contested election the present fault would it be excepting your own, notorious member for Preston caused who had put such an unnatural force those revolutionary symbols to be eleupon the young plant?: The good abbot, vated in the midst of the assembly. I it is said, took the hint and profited by marked his looks, I heard his speeches, it.
and noted him down in the tablet of my in the
Reformation a plea for every outrage Stephen; and a more interesting, on common decency, were collected in though perhaps less costly offering, the chests which now adorn the sides of the crown of Canute, which he placed the choir. Think also of the long suc- there, never again to wear it, in cession of ancient bishops and mi- humble testimony of the power of tred abbots, the Alwyns, Denewulfs, the Supreme Lord of heaven and Ethelwolds, Brithwalds, Walklyns, earth, after the well-known scene of De Blois, Edyngtons, Swithuns, vainly rebuking the waves of the sea Wainfleets, and Wykhams (the last at Southampton. Now, think you see two were the respective founders of the gorgeous procession enter; the Magdalen and New Colleges, Ox- cross-bearers, acolyths, and thurifers, ford), whose bones moulder in those leading the way; the bishop, the walls; and whose tombs or shrines prior, and other dignified clergy, gorgeously adorn them. Think of with the monks following, clad in the thirty or fifty altars, with minis- the richest vestments of their orders, tering priests kneeling before them; and resplendent with gold, scarlet, but especially the high altar, which and embroidery; the church hung West's masterpiece of the resurrec- throughout with rich tapestry; a tion of Lazarus now adorns, but then thousand wax-lights blazing on surmounted by a colossal crucifix every side, and incense fuming aloft, (the traces of which I remarked in while the well-tuned voices of the the masonry
of the splendid screen, choir re-echo to the various minthat lace-work of stone from which strelsy of the tribune ; and the mass it was tom at the Reformation), of spectators are wrought up to with its ante-pendulum of plated the most exalted pitch-of what? gold, garnished with precious stones; of devotion ? of true religion? of its tabernacles, and steps covered really spiritual love, or knowledge, with embroidered work, and orna- or joy? Bishop Milner himself dares mented with pearls ; its six massy not affirm so much.
“ All this,” silver candlesticks, intermixed with he admits, “ is not devotion;" but reliquaries wrought in gold and he asks,“ Will any one deny that jewels ; its many images of saints such exterior means are a help to in their respective niches, molten in excite our languid piety?" I, for silver, and enriched with gold and one, am very much inclined to deny precious stones, while resplendent it. Do these things convince the above shone the Virgin Mary and judgment or improve the heart? I John the Baptist, also of gold, am quite sure that I have seen more adorned with jewels, the gift of true devotion, grounded on scriptural Bishop de Blois, the brother of king principles, the only basis of true de
votion, in a company of villagers in memory as a man born for evil, with the
a cottage, while a faithful pastor has significant motto—not by anticipatory been explaining the word of life, sitpunning, for an honest trade is no disgrace —but seriously, and with alarms which ting on a rush chair, with a solitary Manchester and Spa Fields too speedily taper in one hand, and his Bible in
“ Hic NIGER est ; hunc tu Ro- the other, than I should expect to mane caveto.” Some noble Romans have witness amidst all this pride, pomp, of late neglected the warning; they have deigned to accept his coadjutorship-I display, and spectacle. think they will in the end rue it. But I only object in the adduction of these will not digress to matters of this sort; particulars was to rebut the unfairI mentioned the name of this individual only in justice to Hoadly, to shew that
ness of identifying the simple rites the cap of liberty did not mean in his days of our church, even in her catheexactly what it meant at Paris or Bristol. drals, with the vain shew and splenThe controversy to which his name gave dours of Popery. We have no rise, has produced a powerful effect upon our church ever since, the mingled good pageantry, no relics, no holy water, and evil of which is too large à subject no material sacrifice, no priesthood for a passing note.
proper sense of the word; but
a form of worship, simple, solid, edi- cares, and toils ; its sins, and restfying, and spiritual, administered by lessness ; its arts, and its literature; a man like ourselves, in a language its trade, its manufactures, and its which all understand, and with direct politics; its pleasures and pains ; its reference to the standard of the in- churches and charities ; its prisons spired word, which all may read and and its palaces ; and, above all, that judge of, without penalty or reproach. which gives solemnity to all these, Away, then, with the absurd charge its dense masses of human beings who of Popery.
are to live to all eternity. There is And thus, my dear friend, I must still a third condition ; the scene of hastily and abruptly cut short my decay and desolation ; the site where “ visit to a cathedral.” I have writ- kings and warriors, statesmen and ten with a rapid pen, touching upon philosophers, once were, but are not various subjects as they happened to now; where the arch is broken, and occur to my thoughts, or were no- the battlement decayed, and the reticed in my scrap-book; and I had velry silenced, and the wail forgotnot time to be shorter. I have given ten. America furnishes the first two you, as they arose, the sort of reflec- of these conditions, but not the last. tions which occurred to me in risit. You may tread, to-day, the uning an ancient, royal, and ecclesias- broken forest, or climb the primæval tical city; and though some of them mountain, or listen to the murmurs may be slight and cursory, yet I of the vast unnavigated wave; towould hope that others may have morrow villages and towns are thickly awakened in your mind and my own clustered; the woods are felled, the trains of meditation of solid value. teeming soil is upturned, the lake There are three stages in which it is and river yield their bosom to the interesting to visit any remarkable rapid keel, and their shores are clusspot. There is, first, its aspect in the tered with the varied products of huunbroken solitude of nature before man industry and commerce. But man and his works have visibly im- America has not reached the last pressed their glaring stamp upon its stage; her oldest cities, like the features.
dwellers in them, are but of yesterPleasant were many scenes, but most to day. Europe has lost the first con
dition, but possesses amply the other The solitude of vast extent, untouched By hand of art, where nature sowed, her
two; Asia, still older in her human self,
progeny, often possesses the third, And reaped her crops ; whose garments while she is reverting to the first ; were the clouds;
she offers the melancholy reminisWhose minstrels, brooks; whose lamps, the moon and stars;
cences of a Persepolis or Palmyra, Whose organ quire, the voice of many
a Tadmor or a Balbec, while the waters;
once busy scene around has relapsed Whose banquets, morning dews; whose into the solitude of nature, before heroes, storms;
the hand of man disturbed her doWhose warriors, mighty winds; whose lovers, flowers ;
main. Whose orators, the thunderbolts of God; Which of these three is the most Whose palaces, the everlasting hills ; interesting to contemplate? Surely Whose ceiling, heaven's unfathomable all are interesting, though for differ
blue ; And from whose rocky turrets, battled ent reasons. I should pity the wight high,
who could not enjoy, to the very Prospect immense, spread out in all letter, such a scene as that described things round;
in the lines above cited; who cannot Lost now between the welkin and the main,
rejoice to forget man, and all his Now walled with hills that slept above boasted works, and to hold commerce the storm.
with earth, air, and skies, with many This is the first stage. There is holy musings, known only to the next the peopled city, with all its Christian, which carry him above
these material visions to enjoy com- St. Stephen's as the Areopagus; and munion with his God. There is in Oxford as the groves of Academus ; suchscenes the poetry of feeling; and and the banks of Cam as the margin I see not why there may not be the of llyssus; and the mitres of living blessedness of religion, that is, to prelates corrode with the croziers of the man who can look to his Maker Anselms and Dunstans; and the as his Redeemer, a reconciled God names of William and Adelaide be as and tender Parent in Christ Jesus, little known as Ina and Ethelburga,
My Father made them and our new churches moulder away all.” But this alone would be but with the dilapidated temples of our indolence: a responsible being has forefathers. Oh! then, my much duties to perform; he cannot live respected and esteemed friend, seeing for poetry, or make groves and soli- how short is human life, how fleet tudes his residence.
ing are human prospects, how brief Then comes the second condition, is time, how certain is eternity, let the busy mart, the crowded city; us so number our days that we may and here, if we can find little that is apply our hearts to wisdom. Seeing picturesque, we may find much that “allthese things," all material scenes, is useful : and if we can abstract our “shall be dissolved, what manner of mind from emotion to principle, or persons ought we to be in all holy direct our emotions into the channel conversation and godliness, looking of our duties, this is the most inter- for, and hasting unto the coming of esting scene, since it is fraught with the day of God?” We know not when the infinite destinies of living, sen
our Lord shall come; but whether tient, and immortal beings. It has it be at even, at midnight, at the associations far more affecting, right- cock-crowing, or in the morning, ly viewed, than any which are ge- may we be prepared for his apnerated amidst the sublimities of proach ; rejoicing to behold him, natural scenery ; and I honour the
and to be for ever with him. Riches man, who settling himself down for make to themselves wings and flee conscience sake, in the very heart of a away, like an eagle towards heaven; city—even of a new American city- nor are pleasures, honour, or wisdom without a single object to awaken a more permanent. There is but one sentimental emotion, would not ex- Being that is constant; one city that change his elbowed commerce with is immutable; one treasure that canhis species, and his opportunities of not corrode : may that city be our doing good to them, to bask on the dwelling, that Being our portion, brightest hill that ever smiled on the that treasure our inheritance. loveliest solitude.
Oh then be mine, the fame that cannot die ! Then comes the third state,—that The wisdom mine, that tells of worlds
unknown! of decay. The poet loved to take his Bemine, the faith that lifts her tranquil eye stand on the spot before the black To heaven's bright orbs, and calls them and dingy town was built; the man
all her own! of business, and the Christian pastor And when the breath that wafts my part
ing groan and philanthropist, will cleave to
Shall lose its burden in the passing gale, it when romantic attractions have And nought shall live but one frail funeral ceased, yielding to higher claims stone, and more important duties; the an
Whence soon must lapse the plaintive tiquary, the pensive philosopher, and Then stretched be faith's bold wing, and
moss-worn tale, the Christian moralist will seek it in swelled hope's joyful sail ! decay; and in its ruins will find les. And heaven be mine, and heaven's eternal sons which its hour of holiday did year; not furnish. Here lived, here died, And glories bright, and ecstasies divine ; races now unknown, or known only And mine, the Almighty Father's voice
to hear, by uncertain retrospects—and I shall
“ Servant, well done! thy Saviour's joys die too. London will be as Thebes; and be thine." CHRIST. Observ. No. 359.