Page images

literature, whilst Christendom was wearied-[No, no,]-proceed to buried in comparative ignorance; animadvert upon the third point. and hence, in those days, Mahomme- Roman Catholics were wont to point danism, according to this standard, to our splendid cathedrals, and to was, unquestionably, preferable to adduce from their magnificence a Christianity. Ludovico the Moor, strong presumptive evidence in faand Pope Sextus the Fourth, were vour of the piety of the churchmen among the most distinguished pa- who erected such stately fabrics for trons of literature; and did that the worship of God. legalize the cold-blooded assassina- A few weeks ago, when he entered tions of which they were guilty ? the library of the Athenæum Club, The monster Henry VIII. was a the librarian directed his attention celebrated patron of literature, and to a book which had recently been so was Louis XIV., who commenced placed upon one of the tables. The his reign with the desolation of the frontispiece. consisted of a beautiful Palatinate, and who subsequently architectural design, and he opened perpetrated the most cruel atrocities the volume expecting to find it to be in the persecution of the French a treatise upon Gothic architecture. Protestants. The infidel Frederic Great was his surprise when he disthe Great of Prussia was a patron covered that it contained a most of literature. But when infidels, fulsome panegyric upon the religion heathens, apostates, tyrants, mur- of Rome, and a most virulent attack derers, could all make the same upon that of the Reformers. The boast of having patronized literature, author of the work, Mr. Pugin, had what possible connexion could there been so far deluded by his architecbe between the profession of a pure tural enthusiasm as to become a creed and the patronage of litera- Roman Catholic; and he (Mr.Finch) ture? Among the literati them- had been informed that his wife, selves were found Heathens, Greeks, Mrs. Pugin, had, within the last Roman Catholics, Protestants, who month, also been so infatuated as to were deemed heretics by Rome, and desert the Reformed Catholic faith, infidels, Voltaire, Gibbon, D'Alem- and to enter the pale of Romanism. bert, &c.; so that nothing could be The following was an extract from more preposterous than the endea- Mr. Pugin's treatise, which was envour to build the orthodoxy of titled, “Contrasts, or a Parallel Roman Catholicism upon the papal between the Architecture of the patronage of literature. In reply 15th and 19th Centuries, by A. W. to a monk, whose arguments and Pugin.”—“But who can regan! conduct were highly irreligious, those stupendous edifices of the Luther is reported to have described middle ages (the more special obhim as being not only satanized, but jects of this work) without feeling sub-satanized and super-satanized; this observation in full force ? Here and it might with equal truth be every portion of the sacred fabric stated that the advocate who claimed bespeaks its origin; the very plan of for Rome the character of sanctity, the edifice is the emblem of human by reason of the papal patronage of redemption," &c. literature, was not only stultified, “Yes, it was, indeed, the faith, but sub-stultified, and super-stulti- the zeal, and, above all, the unity of fied.-Much laughter. He would our ancestors that enabled them to now, with the permission of the conceive and raise those wonderful meeting, and if they were not quite fabrics that still remain to excite ir wonderful admiration. They | the strongest claims ? The heathen ere erected for the most solemn/ world, in all parts of the habitable tes of Christian worship, when the globe, were celebrated for the magom Christian bad but one signifi- nificence of their temples. Upon ution throughout the world, when the present occasion it would, perLe glory of the house of God formed haps, be advisable to restrict their i important consideration with observations to ancient Rome. That Tankind, when men were zealous celebrated Roman Catholic writer, or religion, liberal in their gifts, the late Mr. Eustace, had given a ad devoted to her cause; they very graphic description of the ere erected ere heresy had de architectural wonders of ancient troyed faith, schism had put an end Rome. From his statement it ap-o unity, and avarice had instigated peared that ancient Rome contained - he plunder of that wealth that had no fewer than 420 temples; and of

een consecrated to the service of these he would present the meeting che Church. When these feelings with the description of the most

intered in, the spell was broken, splendid, though not the most distinhe architecture itself fell with the guished by the vastness of its dimeneligion to which it owed its birth, sions :- “ The temple of Jupiter und was succeeded by a mixed and Capitolinus, though not the largest base style devoid of science or in Rome, was from its destination elegance, which was rapidly fol- the most sacred, from its site the lowed by others, till at length, I most conspicuous, and from its furregulated by no system, devoid of niture and decorations the most unity, but made to suit the ideas opulent. It was filled with the and means of each sect as they treasures of vanquished monarchs, spring up, buildings for religious adorned with the plunder of palaces worship present as great incon- and temples, and enriched with the gruities, varieties, and extravagances, I spoils of the conquered worid. It as the sects and ideas which have ema- was, in fact, the treasury of Rome, nated from the new religion which the deposit of the accumulated trifirst wrought this great change.” Jumphs of ages of victory and con.

Sach was the substance of Crowns, shields, and statues Pugin's argument; and if it was of gold, the offerings of kings, emmore characterized by plausibility perors, and heroes, blazed on all han logic, it was not wholly un- sides, and adorned with equal profuworthy of comment. The readiest sion the interior and exterior of this ind the most conclusive mode of palace of dominion—this throne of onsidering these questions was by empire and religion. Its threshold xamining them in the light of the was bronze, but bronze doubly and postolic age. When Christianity triply gilt; the pediment, sides, and as first promulgated by the apostles summit of the roof presented horses, nd the evangelists, mankind might chariots, heroes, and gods, the Roman

said to be divided into three por- eagle, and its attendant Victory, all ons, heathens, Jews, and Christians. of bronze, silver, or gold, glittering be heathens at Rome were ad- | to the sun, and dazzling to the eyes essed by the Apostle Paul towards of the spectator.” Even our cathee close of his mission. Now, if | drals must hide their diminished ligious architecture had in these heads, when contrasted with the rs been the test of religious truth, magnificence of this heathen temple jich party could have preferred but what could the apostle 1

exhibit in comparison with it ? | By the rejection and crucifixion of He could only point to his own the Saviour. Those facts unequi“ hired house," wherein he received vocally testified that there was no such Jews and Romans as attended inseparable connexion between the his ministry, and participated in his building of beautiful temples for devotions; and what Christian would the service even of the true God, deny the ineffably superior spiritual | and spiritual piety. Mr. Pugin, glory of his temple over the proud however, would perhaps object to fabric which was desecrated by Pagan arguments deduced from Pagan or dolatry - Hear, hear. ]—But here Jewish delinquency, and he would It would perhaps be remarked by urge that the English cathedrals Roman Catholic advocates, that an were neither erected by the worinimeasurable difference prevailed shippers of false gods, nor by those between the erection of temples to who denied their Saviour. By whom false gods, and the building of tem- then were the English cathedrals ples or cathedrals which were con- constructed ? By the Norman and secrated to Jehovah. He would Italian clergy. Who introduced the meet them upon that ground, and Norman and Italian clergy into pass on to the second temple at England ? William the Conqueror, Jerusalem. Everybody was ac- who, his enterprise having received quainted with the surpassing splen- the papal sanction, invaded our land, dour of that enormous edifice. It overthrew our liberties, covered it was amply described by Josephus; with desolation and misery, dispelled it greatly surpassed in its magnifi- the greater part of the native clergy, cence the temple of Solomon, and because they confederated with the was, perhaps, the finest temple that laity for the preservation of the ever was elevated for the service of nation's independence and freedom, true or false religion. Even the and installed the Norman clergy in Lord's disciples were dazzled by its their room, who so raised the paral brilliancy. In the 24th chapter of power in England, that in the 13th St. Matthew it is written, “And century Europe beheld King John Jesus went out and departed from on his knees as the Pope's vassal, the temple : and his disciples came and the barons excommunicated by to him for to show him the buildings the Pope for refusing to cancel of the temple.” Now let the meet- Magna Charta. These reminiscences, ing mark our blessed Saviour's reply. which met them in the very threshold And Jesus said unto them, See ye of their inquiry, were not seductive, not all these things ? Verily I say nor were they pre-eminently calcu. unto you, there shall not be left lated to advance the cause of British here one stone upon another that Romanism. But, after all, what was shall not be thrown down." That the state of the Roman Catholic part of the subject might be dis- Church when the principal English missed in a few words. Who built cathedrals were founded and built ? the second temple of the Jews? The cathedral of Canterbury was Herod the Great. For what was founded by Bishop Lanfranc in that unhappy monarch notorious ? 1073. The cathedral of York was For the murder of the Innocents. For begun in 1173. The cathedral of whose gratification did he build the Winchester was commenced in 1079. temple? To make himself popular The cathedral of Peterborough in with the Jews. How did they 1118. The cathedral of Lincoln in evince their religious sentiments ? 1118. What, then, was the moral and religious condition of the Rom. What a strange mixture did they ish Church in the llth, 12th, and they there exhibit of ferocity and 13th centuries ? At the first retro- devotion! No mercy was shown to spective glance they call to mind the inhabitants; rivers of blood again the haughty Hildebrand, who flou- defiled the streets; old and young, rished in the latter part of the llth women with their infants at the century, and by his immeasurable breast, infidels and Jews, were imambition plunged Italy and Ger-molated ; and the work of carnage many into wars, by which they were having been completed for a time, distracted or desolated for nearly they presented themselves at the three centuries. Gregory VII. ele- | holy sepulchre, and offered up their vated the papal power above that of thanksgivings to God-thus testifyemperors and kings; he laid claim ing, by their sanguinary deeds, how to half the kingdoms of Europe ; he little they were under the dominion excommunicated the Emperor of of the gospel of grace. This, it Germany, and kept him waiting must be recollected, was styled the without the gates of his palace dur- holy war. It would have been well ing three days and three nights for the Church of Rome in those barefooted, and in the garb of a ages, if the massacre of the infidels penitent. His successors trod in had been her only crime; but it was his footsteps. Kings and emperors then that the mystical Babylon was discharged the humble office of the displayed as literally drunken with Pope's equerries, and held his bridle the blood of the saints. Pope and his stirrups when he mounted Innocent III. and his successors his horse. In those days whole invoked the aid of the secular arm, kingdoms were laid under interdict and stimulated kings and princes to by the popes, all the offices of reli- the crusades against the Waidenses gion were suspended; even the dead and Albigenses.* Their cities were were left disinterred, and the voice stormed, their country was ravaged ; of religion was utterly silenced. It hundreds of them were consigned was then, too, that Europe was dis- to the flames, and tens of thousands graced by the fanaticism of the cru- of them were slaughtered. After sades. Without dwelling upon the persecutions and proscriptions which proceedings and outrages of the first continued for about forty years, the hordes of fanatics who followed Peter remnant of this devoted people, the Hermit, and Walter the Penni- whose chief crime consisted in their less, and others, let them for a mo- opposition to Rome, were compelled ment contemplate the proceedings to conceal themselves in the more of the first regular army of the retired parts of Languedoc, Switzcrusades. If they followed them to erland, the north of Italy, Hungary, Antioch, they perceived them wreak- and Germany, until the era of the ing their vengeance upon the Ma- glorious Reformation, when they hommedans, after the conflict had were enabled to emerge from their ceased, until their houses were filled obscurity, and could again openly with gore, and the streets streamed worship their God and Saviour in with blood; and when the work of spirit and truth. [Applause.] Why slaughter was completed, they then need he (Mr. Finch) say more? abandoned themselves to the most Those ages were iron, by reason of lamentable excess and profligacy. their ferocity and profligacy; and They subsequently carried by as-1 * Consult the celebrated Roman Catholic sault Jerusalem, the sacred city. annalist, Raynaldus.

leaden, by reasoj. of their spiritual time dishes follow dishes, and for blindness, and their ignorance of one dish of butcher's meat from profane and sacred literature. But which you abstain, two large fishes here the Roman Catholic apologist are introduced; and though yon bad would, perhaps, interpose, and pro- enough of the first, when you begin test against a narrative which pro- with the second it seems as if you ceeded from the inouth of an oppo- | had not tasted the first. For all nent. Be it so. He would introduce things are prepared by the cooks them to a Roman Catholic witness, with so much diligence and art, that and be content to abide by his testi- when four or five dishes have been mony. The witness whom he was devoured, the first don't stand in about to present to them was no the way of the last, nor does satiety other than the great St. Bernard, diminish the appetite. For the pa. one of the chiefest of the Roman late, seduced by new sauces, by Catholic saints, and the last of the degrees losing its power of distinfathers of the church. To such a guishing, is greedily reneved in its witness the most sensitive Roman desires for other juices as if it was Catholic could not object. First, / vet fasting..... Who can describe he would read St. Bernard's de- in how many ways (to say nothing scription of the monks of the 12th of other things) eggs only are turned century. (St. Bernardi Abbatis Apo- over and tormented; with what inlogia ad Gulielm. Abbatem. chap. ix.) genuity they are turned inside out,

“Who in the beginning, when the turned over, liquified, hardened, conmonastic order commenced, would tracted; and now they are served up have believed that the monks would | fried, now roasted, now stuffed, nov have arrived at such a state of indo- mixed together, now separately lence? How greatly do we differ and why are all these things done, from the monks who lived in the except only to prevent nausea ? The time of Anthony! They, of a truth, quality of the things, besides, is when at certain seasons they visited made to have such an outward apeach other in the spirit of charity, pearance, as to be not less pleasing received from each other the bread to the eye than to the palate. The of the soul with such eagerness, eyes are allured by colours, and the that, almost forgetful of the noupalate by tastes ; and the unhappy rishment of the body, they passed stomach, upon which the colours do for the most part the whole day not shine, and which the relishes do with their bodies fasting, but not not soothe, being thus compelled to with fasting minds. . . . . But when receive all things, is oppressed and we come together, to use the words overwhelmed, rather than refreshed. of the apostle, 'This is not to eat the “And what can I say respecting Lord's supper ;' for there is no one drinking of water? For all of us, who seeks or who administers the the very instant we become monks, heavenly bread. Nothing is done have weak stomachs, and neglect respecting the Scriptures or the the necessary counsel of the apostle salvation of souls; but trifles and respecting the use of wine, the word laughter prevail, and words are cast 'little' which he introduced being, to the wind. At dinner the ears I know not why, left out. And I are as much fed with common talk, / wish they were content with pure as the jaws with feastings; by which wine only. I am ashamed to menevery one is so taken up, that there tion it, but it is still more shameful is no moderation in eating. Mean- to practise it ; and if we are ashamed

« ՆախորդըՇարունակել »