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Note XI.

Thus of three marks which in the creed we view,
Not one of all can be applied to you,

Much less the fourth; in vain, alas !

you seek

The ambitious title of apostolic.-P. 179.

The poet is enumerating the marks of the Catholic church, according to the Nicene creed, which he makes out to be Unity, Truth, Sanctity, and Apostolic Derivation, all of which he denies to the church of England. The qualities of truth and sanctity are implied under the word Catholic.

Note XII.

That pious Joseph in the church behold,

To feed your famine, and refuse your gold;

The Joseph you exiled, the Joseph whom you sold.-P. 182. The English Benedictine monks executed a renunciation of the abbey lands, belonging to the order before the Reformation, in order to satisfy the minds of the possessors, and reconcile them to the re-establishment of the ancient religion, by guaranteeing the stability of their property. There appeared, however, to the proprietors of these lands, little generosity in this renunciation, in case the monks were to remain in a condition of inability to support their pretended claim; and, on the other hand, some reason to suspect its validity, should they ever be strong enough to plead their title. The king's declaration of indulgence contained a promise upon this head, which appeared equally ominous: He declared, that he would maintain his loving subjects in their properties and possessions, "as well of church and abbey lands as of any other." The only effect of this clause was to make men enquire, whether popery was so near being established as to make such a promise necessary; and if so, how far the promise itself was to be relied upon, in opposition to the doctrine of resumption, which had always been enforced by the Roman see, even when these church lands fell into the hands of persons of their own persuasion, unless they were dedicated to pious uses. Nor were there wanting persons to remind the proprietors of such lands, that the canons declared that even the pope had no authority to confirm the alienation of the property of the church; that the general council of Trent had solemnly anathematized all who detained church lands; that the Monasticon Anglicanum was carefully preserved in the Vatican as a rule for the intended resumption; and that the reigning pope had obstinately refused to confirm any such alienations by his bulls, though the doing so at this

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crisis might have removed a great obstacle to the growth of Popery in England. See, in the State Tracts, a piece called "Abbey Lands not assured to Roman Catholics," Vol. I. p. 326; and more espe cially a tract, by some ascribed to Burnet, and by others to Sir William Coventry, entitled, "A Letter written to Dr Burnet, giving some account of Cardinal Pole's secret powers; from which it appears, that it never was intended to confirm the Alienation that was made of the Abbey Lands. To which are added, Two Breves that Cardinal Pole brought over, and some other of his Letters that were never before printed, 1685."

Note XIII.

Such were the pleasing triumphs of the sky,
For James his late nocturnal victory;
The pledge of his almighty Patron's love,

The fireworks which his angels made above.-P. 182.

The aurora borealis was an uncommon spectacle in England during the 17th century. Its occasional appearance, however, gave foundation to those tales of armies fighting in the air, and similar phenomena with which the credulity of the vulgar was amused. The author seems to allude to some extraordinary display of the aurora borealis on the evening of the battle of Sedgemuir, which was chiefly fought by night. I do not find the circumstance noticed elsewhere. Dryden attests it by his personal


Note XIV.

And then the dew-drops on her silken hide
Her tender constitution did declare,

Too lady-like a long fatigue to bear,

And rough inclemencies of raw nocturnal air.-P. 183.

This seems to be a sarcasm of the same kind with the following: "But," says the zealous Protestant of the mother church, "if you repeal the test, you take away the bulwark that defends the church; for if that were once demolished, the enemy would rush in and possess all; and it is a delicate innocent church that cannot be safe but in a fortified place."-"I must confess, it is a great argument of her modesty to own herself weak and unable to subsist without the support of parliamentary laws, to hang, draw, or quarter her opposers, and without a coercive power in herself to fine and excommunicate all recusants and nonconformists."* One would wish to ask this Catholic advocate for universal toleration, if he had ever heard of a court in Popish countries for the prevention of heresy, generally called the Inquisition?

* New Test of the Church of England's Loyalty.








MUCH malice, mingled with a little wit,
Perhaps may censure this mysterious writ;
Because the muse has peopled Caledon

may lo

With panthers, bears, and wolves, and beasts un


As if we were not stocked with monsters of our own.
Let Æsop answer, who has set to view

Such kinds as Greece and Phrygia never knew;
And mother Hubbard, in her homely dress,
Has sharply blamed a British lioness;

That queen, whose feast the factious rabble keep,
Exposed obscenely naked, and asleep. *
Led by those great examples, may not I
The wonted organs of their words supply?
If men transact like brutes, 'tis equal then
For brutes to claim the privilege of men.

Others our Hind of folly will indite,
To entertain a dangerous guest by night.
Let those remember, that she cannot die,
Till rolling time is lost in round eternity;

*Note I.

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