Page images

bishop of Marseilles, two hundred years after, to break down the images in his church, when he found them to be thus abused: which fact of his, though pope Gregory disliked, because he thought that images might profitably be retained as laymen's books; yet in this he commended his zeal, that he would by no means suffer them to be worshipped. “I' certify you,” saith he, “ that it came of late to our hearing, that your brotherhood, seeing certain worshippers of images, did break the said church images and threw them away. And surely, we commended you that you had that zeal, that nothing made with hands should be worshipped: but yet we judge that you should not have broken those images. For painting is therefore used in churches, that they which are unlearned, may yet by sight read those things upon the walls, which they cannot read in books. Therefore your brotherhood ought both to preserve the images, and to restrain the people from worshipping of them: that both the ignorant might have had, whence to gather the knowledge of the history, and the people might not sin in worshipping the picture.”

There would be no end, if we should lay down at large the fierce contentions that afterwards arose in the Church touching this matter of images, the Greek emperors, Leo Isaurus, Constantinus Caballinus, Nicephorus, Stauratius, Leo Armenus, Michael Balbus, Theophilus, and others, opposing them in the east; and on the other side, Gregory the second and third, Paul the first, Stephen the fourth, Adrian the first and second, Leo the third, Nicholas the first, and other popes of Rome as stiffly upholding them in the west. In a council of three hundred and thirtyeight bishops held at Constantinople in the year of our Lord DCCLIV. they were solemnly condemned ; in another council of three hundred and fifty bishops held at Nice in the year DCCLXXXVII. they were advanced again, and the veneration of them as much commended. This base decree of the second Nicene council, touching the adoration of images, although it were not by the hundredth part so gross, as that which was afterwards invented by the Popish schoolmen, yet was it rejected as repugnant to the doctrine of the Church of God, by the princes and bishops of England first, about the year DCCXCII. and by Charles the Great afterward, and the bishops of Italy, France, and Germany, which by his appointment were gathered together in the council of Frankfort, the year of our Lord DCCXCIV.

* Præterea indico dudum ad nos pervenisse, quod Fraternitas vestra quosdam imaginum adoratores aspiciens, easdem ecclesiæ imagines confregit, atque projecit. Et quidem zelum vos, ne quid manufactum adorari possit, habuisse laudavimus : sed frangere easdem imagines non debuisse judicamus. Idcirco enim pictura in ecclesiis adhibetur, ut hi qui literas nesciunt, saltem in parietibus videndo legant quæ legere in codicibus non valent. Tua ergo Fraternitas et illas servare, et ab earum adoratu populum prohibere debuit : quatenus et literarum nescii haberent unde scientiam historiæ colligerent; et populus in picturæ adoratione minime peccaret. Gregor. Registr. lib. 9. epist. 105. ad Serenum. op. tom. 2. pag. 1006. Vide etiam lib. 11. epist. 13. ad eundem. op. tom. 2. pag. 1099. h Expungantur omnia, quæ sub hoc titulo (De Imaginibus) continentur, Index librorum expurgatorum, Bernardi de Sandoval et Roxas Card. de consilio senatus generalis Inquisit. Hispan. excus. Madriti, ann. 1612.

The four books, which by his authority were published against that Nicene synod, and the adoration of images defended therein, are yet to be seen; as the resolution also of the doctors of France assembled at Paris by the command of his son Ludovicus Pius, in the year DCCCXXIV. and the book of Agobardus, bishop of Lyons, concerning pictures and images, written about the same time; the argument whereof is thus delivered by Papirius Massonus the setter out of it: “ Detectings most manifestly the errors of the Grecians touching images and pictures, he denieth that they ought to be worshipped: which opinion all we Catholics do allow; and follow the testimony of Gregory the Great concerning them." This passage, together with the larger view of the contents of this treatise following afterwards, the Spanish inquisitors in their Index expurgatorius command to be blotted out, which we find to be accordingly performed by the divines of Cologne, in

& Græcorum errores de imaginibus et picturis manifestissime detegens, negat eas adorari debere : quam sententiam omnes Catholici probamus, Gregoriique Magni testimonium de illis sequimur. Papir. Masson. Præfat. in Agobardi opera, edit. Paris. ann. 1605.

their late corrupt edition of the great Bibliotheca of the ancient Fathers. Gretser professeth that he “ extremelyk wondereth, that this judgment of the book of Agobardus should proceed from a Catholic man. For Agobardus," saith he, “in that whole book doth nothing else, but endeavour to demonstrate, although with a vain labour, that images are not to be worshipped.” " And' who be these Grecians whose errors touching images Agobardus doth refel, as this publisher saith? Surely these Grecians are the fathers of the Nicene council, who decreed that images should be adored and worshipped. Against whom whosoever disputeth, doth mainly dissent from right believers." To which blind censure of the Jesuits we may oppose, not only the general judgment of the ancient Almainsm his own countrymen, who within these four or five hundred years did flatly disclaim this image-worship as by Nicetas Choniates is witnessed: but also the testimony of the divines and historians of England, France, and Germany touching the Nicene council in particular; rejecting it as a pseudo-synod“, because it concluded “ thato images should be worshipped: which thing,” say our chroniclers, “ the Church of God doth utterly detest.” And yet for all that, we have news lately brought us from Rome, that “ itp is most certain, and most assured, that the Christian

i Magn. Bibliothec. Veter. Patrum, tom. 9. part. 1. edit. Culon, ann. 1618. pag. 548. et 551.

k Vehementer profecto hoc judicium de libro Agobardi ab homine Catholico profectum, miratus sum. Nam Agobardus toto libello, nihil aliud facit, quam quod demonstrare nititur (quamvis casso conatu) imagines non esse adorandas. Jac. Gretser. lib. 1. de Cruce, cap. 58.

| Et quinam sunt Græci, quorum de imaginibus errores Agobardus refellit, ut editor ait? Nimirum Græci isti sunt patres Nicæni concilii, qui sanxerunt imagines adorandas et colendas esse. Contra quos qui disputat, is ab orthodoxis toto cælo discordat. Ibid.

m 'Αρμενίοις γαρ και 'Αλαμανοίς επίσης και των αγίων εικόνων προσκύvnos árnyópevTAI. Nicet. Choniat. annal lib. 2.

n Hincmar. Remens. lib. contr. Hincmar. Laudunens. cap. 20. Egolismens. monach. in vita Caroli Magni. Annal Fuldens. Ado, Regino. et Hermann. Contract. in chronic. an. 794.

o Imagines adorari debere : quod omnino Ecclesia Dei execratur. Simeon Dunelmens. Roger. Hoveden. et Matth. Westmonast. hist. ann. 792. vel 793. p Ecclesiam porro Christianam, etiam Antiquissimam, Totam, ac UniverVOL, III.


[ocr errors]

Church, even the most ancient, the whole, and the universal Church, did with wonderful consent, without any opposition or contradiction, worship statues and images. Which if the cauterized conscience of a wretched apostata would give him leave to utter : yet the extreme shamelessness of the assertion might have withheld their wisdoms whom he sought to please thereby, from giving him leave to publish it.

But it may be I seek for shamefacedness in a place where it is not to be found : and therefore leaving them to their images, like to like, for “they that make them are like unto them: and so is every one that trusteth in them," I proceed from this point unto that which followeth.

salem, summo consensu, absque ulla oppositione, aut contradictione, statuas ac imagines veneratam esse, est certissimum ac probatissimum. M. Anton. de Dominis, De consilio sui reditus, sect. 23.

9 Psal. 115. ver. 8. et 135. ver. 18.

[merged small][ocr errors][merged small]



That man hath free will, is not by us gainsaid: though we dare not give him so large a freedom as the Jesuits presume to do. Freedom of will we know doth as essentially belong unto a man, as reason itself: and he that spoileth him of that power, doth in effect make him a very beast. For this is the difference betwixt reasonable and unreasonable creatures, as Damascen rightly noteth: “ The unreasonable are rather led by nature, than themselves leaders ofit: and therefore do they never contradict their natural appetite, but as soon as they affect any thing, they rush to the prosecution of it. But man, being indued with reason, doth rather lead nature, than is led by it: and therefore being moved with appetite, if he will, he hath power to restrain his appetite, or to follow it." Hereby he is enabled to do the things which he doth, neither by a brute instinct of nature, nor yet by any compulsion, but by advice and deliberation: the mind first taking into consideration the grounds and circumstances of each action, and freely debating on either side what in this case were best to be done or not done, and then the will inclining itself to put in execution the last and conclusive judgment of the practical understanding. This liberty we acknowledge a man may exercise in all actions that are

[ocr errors]

a "Οθεν και τα άλογα ουκ εισίν αυτεξούσια: άγονται γαρ μάλλον υπό της φύσεως, ήπερ άγουσι διό ουδέ αντιλέγουσι τη φυσική ορέξει, άλλ' άμα όρεχθώσι τινός, ορμώσι προς την πράξιν. Οδε άνθρωπος λογικός ών, άγει μάλλον την φύσιν, ήπερ άγεται· διό και όρεγόμενος, είπερ εθέλοι, εξουσίαν έχει αναχαιτίσαι την όρεξιν, ή ακολουθήσαι αυτό. Jo. Damascen. orthodox. fid. lib. 2. cap. 27. edit. Græc. vel 44. Latin.

« ՆախորդըՇարունակել »