Imatges de pàgina

Behmenists or Sir Henry Vane; sometimes they are like worshipful Quakers; in three or four passages most zealous Papists. And at last the devil shews his cloven foot, and teaches the doctrine of devils indeed, teaching Dr. Dee and Edward Kellie (an avow ed necromancer) to lie promiscuously with one another's wife. And at last all ends in cheating promises, for Dee died and found the devil a liar. All that I have learned by the book is, that Dr. Casaubon is not like his father, else he would not have sent such a book into this world, which is too apt to catch at pretended new lights, though from the prince of darkness. This account I give you of my misspent time, as an apology, if I be a fortnight longer in sending you an account of what I can find in Blondel for your purpose. To-morrow I shall begin, God willing, and not give over till I go through it; I wish I could do any thing might satisfy you, none living is willinger than,



Sir, Your true friend and servant, "LAUDERDAILL.

હે Windsor Castle, "December 14, 1658.

"I wish I knew any were fit to translate your books; I am sure they would take hugely abroad, and I think it were not amiss to begin with the Call to the Unconverted.

"Some books I have got out of Holland, most of Amyrault his works; among the rest a smart piece in French, of Church Government against the Independents. I have also got the Mystery of Jesuitism in Latin, translated by the approbation of the author, (who wrote it most eloquently in French, under the title of Lewes Montalte his Provincial Letters). This Latin copy is much longer than the French or English; with replies to the Jesuits' pitiful answers: it is done by an able divine, a Papist, and printed at Collen. If you have a mind to see it, I shall send it to you. "For Mr. Richard Baxter, "Minister of the Gospel "At Kiderminster."

LETTER VII. "Reverend and much-honoured Sir, "On the 15th of December last I sent you some scribblings of my own.

I know not if they came to your hands, though I am sure they were delivered to Mr. White. But the loss is small, though they did miscarry, only I should be sorry they came to other hands, who perhaps will not have so much charity for me as I do expect from you. In that letter I promised you a full account of Blondel's most learned book sooner than I am able to send it, for I had a sad interruption by the news that it hath pleased God to call my dearest brother. This disabled me from study divers days. For albeit the Lord was pleased to sweeten that sad affliction by the greatest comfort that I was capable of, by the testimonies of Mr. James Sharpe and some other honest ministers who were with my brother, that they were much edified by his gracious discourses, and the temper they found him in before his end. So that though I shall never see him more in this world, yet the hopes to meet him in a much better world, (where there is neither sin nor sorrow,) ought to turn my sorrow into thanksgiving for the Lord's rich and free mercy. But I must confess my private loss sits too sharp on me. This will, I hope, obtain your pardon for the failing in time. And that you may have some account of my diligence, receive herewith an account of near half of the book, about 550 pages in folio, reduced into a nut shell. It is wholly on the defensive, and as you will see by the summary, (which I first send you,) it is an accurate anin point of antiquity as to these subswer to what the adversaries do allege jects: were it in my power to send you the whole, you would certainly pick more out of it, but here is what I did consider fittest for your purpose. I found the testimonies cited in French, (and not in their own language,) so I put them verbatim into English. I tell you the pages of my author, and sometimes, yea often, I only tell you the purpose, and that it is largely proved by my author. If any of these general heads will be of advantage to you, be pleased to write me word what number you pitch on, and what page in Blondel, and I shall speedily transcribe them to you. For although I kept no copy of my former translations, yet I keep a copy of this, so that any place you shall pitch on I can presently turn to it. In the mean

time, I shall go on as speedily as I
can with the rest of the work. One
thing I shall promise that, excepting
the Holy Scripture and sometimes for
recreation a snatch at some other
book, I shall read nothing else till it
be done. Again, I must conclude that
if I am not so useful as I do desire to
your service, yet I hope you will ac-
cept of the sincere desires of,

clesiastic histories, viz. the Indians.
They must be confessed to have been
without the verge of Romania, in the
largest sense: it is known Frumentius
converted them, and he had his ordi-
nation at Alexandria, but I will not
be tedious with enforcing more.
to the third question, Blondel offers at
no more than I have transcribed, and
says not a word of those one or two
bishops you mention of Parthia and


"Your truly affectionate friend and Armenia. As for apparitions and pos

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"Reverend and much-honoured Sir,

"Yours of the 13th January was long by the way, for I had it not till Saturday last, 22d, so late that I could do nothing till Monday. Here is as full an account as I can give you concerning your three questions. I have transcribed his words, and must give you the testimonies in English, be cause Blondel puts them in French, and not in the language of the authors. I must again beg your pardon for its English, which I do willingly, that I may express my author's meaning, and to you intelligibly (though not to an unlearned reader). As for example, dotes for gifts, grade for degree, Sacerdoce, Eloge; for the first three are no more French than they are English, and seeing Blondel makes French of those three Latin words, I may to you make them English. Neither would I alter his word numerosity. In the first question I hope you will be satisfied; as for the other two I am sorry Blondel is not pleased to prove what he says. In the second, I conceive he takes it for granted that the Pope could not pretend to more than a primacy in the Roman empire, for he proves that Scripture And the councils gives him none. consisted only of the Roman empire; so if it be proved that the countries were Christian which were never parts of that empire, it is all that is necessary. One of the people mentioned may be clearly proved by all the ec

sessions, (besides the books which you
cite in your book of the Unreasona-
bleness of Infidelity,) I have in Latin
a book of three famous possessions,
of one a priest at Marseilles, who was
prince of the synagogues of Satan (or
Sabbat) in all Europe; his name (as
I take it) was Louis Gaufredy, burnt
about forty years ago; and of two
possessed nuns in Flanders. The book
is printed at Paris, dedicated to the
King of France: if you please I will
send it, but it serves more to shame
Papists for laying weight upon the
devil's testimony, (being exorcised,)
for confirming their grossest super-
stitions, (and I put a learned Roman-
ist lately hugely out of countenance
with it,) yet there are divers things in
it to your purpose. I have also two
books in a large quarto, written by a
French Counsellor, employed by the
Parliament of Bourdeaux, in the
judging of witches; his name is De
l'Ancre; he is specially recommend-
ed by that little discourse of the Devil
of Mascon, which was lately printed
in English. In these books I am sure
there are many stories to your pur-
pose, but the books are French, and
I must dispatch Blondel ere I under-
As for relations, I could
take more.
tell you of some in my own country
most certainly true, some before my
time, one since I was a man, in a godly
minister's house, strangely and unde-
niably haunted with spirits. If I had
my right, I have the chief interest in
and am patron of the parish, and have
many times had the relation from the
minister's mouth. I can tell you of a
possession in Scotland, near the place
I was born in, since I remember; the
particulars which I had myself of Mr.
Jo. Weem's own mouth, but my poor
country lies under such a weight
of malice and slander, that I would
not willingly have any thing of that
put in print now: yet for your satis-

faction I shall write them to you when you please. Also of a famous possession in Holland, which I had there by unquestionable tradition. And for mock possessions to shame Papists, I saw two shameful ones-that of Loudon nuns in France, (on which Walter Montague grounded his pretended conversion,) and one at Antwerp. But I shall trouble you with none of this till you give me a second order. As for my scribblings concerning my country, take your own time and tell me freely wherein you think me mistaken, and as I did write in haste, and only for your satisfaction, so I shall willingly and thankfully receive your correction. You are just in saying I am a party, and so I must confess I am against the Rev. Prelate (who, I think, on that argument did use us ill and himself worse). But I shall labour not to be a wilful one against truth when I can see it. This calling of a Parliament by the Protector gives me hope you will come to London (which is the greatest satisfaction I expect from it). And then I flatter myself you will see me. In the mean time, if my restraint can give me opportunity to do any thing acceptable to you, it will much sweeten it. For though I am an useless laid-aside, and, as to outward things, a ruined prisoner, yet I bless God my spirit is free, by his grace I have some measure of contented submission. And I am with all my heart,


"Your real friend and servant,

“ 26th January.

ment, I shall endeavour to satisfy you. Receive herewith that Latin book, (if Latin I may call it,) it is so coarse a style; I did only cursorily view it, so cannot well judge whether it will be of use against Sadducees, sure I am it may shame Romanists; that story I mean of Magdalen de Palud, where by their pretended church authority, a devil is made so zealous for Popish errors, and so orthodox a Papist. I have laid in a leaf at the beginning of it. The story is printed long ago in English, and Dr. Worthington of Cambridge brought it hither to me. There being here four prisoners committed as priests, one of them (an ingenious man) seeing it in my chamber, would needs maintain that it was a London invention to disgrace them, but when I shewed him this printed at Paris, and dedicated to the French King, he was much out of countenance. To shame Papists, I think this book may be of use to lie by you, and therefore I beseech you keep it; it is, I confess, not worthy of your acceptance; yet if you like it you shall oblige me to keep it. As for De l'Ancre, I told you I have two volumes in 4to. of his, but as far as I can judge by a cursory view, it is not worth the pains to be translated. It is true, divers stories in it might be culled out by a discreet person, fit enough to convince the incredulous that there are witches; but there is a great deal of trash in the book, and he must have much time to spare who will undertake it. In the end of one of the volumes, there is a large story of an apparition in a village near Agen, in Gasconie, attested by the Bishop of Agen, the notaire

"I am advanced in Blondel 300 and some others, to have happened in pages more.

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June and July 1612. But it looks like a Popish forgery, for the spirit's actions and discourses tend wholly to confirm the Popish purgatory, messes and such trash, and it is alleged to have been seen only by three wenches; so it might shame the Papist, but would rather harden than convert an Atheistical Sadducce. If you know any will employ their time about it, I shall most willingly send them the books; but I hope you will not desire me to take such a task. And, indeed, I may justly be ashamed to have been so slow in a much better work; but I hope you have goodness enough to forgive me, when I have told you that

I could not well help it, having had these six weeks so many unavoidable avocations and interruptions. After I had written my last to you, I intended great diligence till I had finished it, But I was much discouraged by find ing nothing to your purpose in that long debate concerning the Primates of Africk (where I did please myself with expecting so much for you). That dispute is wholly spent in the examination what was the reason of primacy in Africk. And since that time, (though I have no business,) yet I could not promise myself one whole day to this work. But I had determined to begin again this week, when your self hath interrupted me, for having received your two books on Saturday at night, I can do nothing till I have read them. And, besides, your Key for Catholics being now abroad, I conceive you are in no such haste. A ways after I have read these two books of yours, I shall go about finishing Blondel. But because I do not exactly remember how much of my notes out of Blondel I have transcribed and sent you, be pleased to write me word if the 26th observation, referring to page 453, was not the last which I sent to you (excepting what I wrote the 26th January, in answer to some queries of yours of the 13th January). This you may please to answer at your convenience.

"Now give me leave to return you hearty thanks for your two books; but I was much surprised to see you take notice of me in print, and with a character which I can no way pretend to be due to me: it is a great temp. tation to pride to be commended by such a man as you are, but I hope the knowledge I have of how little I deserve, the reflection on your not knowing me, and on your charitable dispo sition, shall preserve me from being lifted up by such a favour. Something else occurred to me upon my first view of both your books, which is not fit to be written, but if ever I have the happiness to see you, I will take the freedom to speak with you of it. I have read more than the half of your Key: it is like yourself, I need say no more, and I trust in God it shall be of great use to his church.

"I must also return you my thanks for your recommending my business to some members of the House. I

have been often desired to make my applications thither, because my case is most extraordinary. But the same reasons which you suggest do hinder me, and the greater public affairs obstruct my making any applications, except to the throne of grace for patience, submission and a sanctified use of all the Lord's dispensations. To his rich grace I recommend you and your labours. I need not again repeat that I am by very many obligations,

"Much-honoured Sir,

"Your real and most affectionate "Friend and servant,


"Windsor Castle,
"17 of March, 1659.

"I doubt not but you will be wary in your dispute with those Papists you inention, for they use to make very unhandsome relations of such business.

"Here is a young man belonging to a good friend of mine, he was bred a Protestant, but ill-company, and the diligence of some juggling priests, have put Popish notions into his head. He is melancholy and reserved, no scholar, and so worse to deal with. My friend hearing from me that you was engaged in a dispute, would have sent him to you, but I diverted it, thinking the dispute would be over. Be pleased to let me know if you are to dispute any more, for it may be such a dispute might do the young man good."

"To the Reverend my much-ho

noured friend,

"Mr. Richard Baxter,
"Minister of the Gospel at

[The reader of these letters may be interested in being informed that when Lauderdale became a great man, and indeed the ruler of Scotland, he offered Baxter what place in that country he would choose, either a church, or a college in a university, or a bishopric. Baxter honestly and sagaciously declined the offer, as appears by a letter of his, dated June 24, 1670. Shortly after, Lauderdale, on one of his journeys to Scotland, sent for Baxter at Barnet, where Baxter gave him the same answer as in his letter. "When Lauderdale got to Scotland, (says

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I HAVE not selected, this depre. from any invidious wish to depreciate the character of the late Rev. Hugh Worthington, as a Christian preacher. His memory will be ever honoured by me, for his personal worth, and for the pre-eminent useful ness of his services in the pulpit. In common with many individuals, I am grateful to the editor of these discourses, for giving them to the public. It is not merely to the warm admirers of Mr. W., but to the world in general, that they are a most welcome and beneficial present. The habit of attentive observation and clear recollection, as the effect of which they appear in this form, claims a high degree of praise. In the Sermons themselves I perceive every mark of genuineness. They abound in the peculiarities, in the excellencies and blemishes, of the writer. The excellencies, however, considerably prevail, and scarcely permit us to think on the alloy. Mr. Hugh Worthington was among the most deservedly popular preachers of his age and country. His style, like his delivery, was singularly impressive. What Dr. Bates said of Baxter's Works, is applicable to these discourses: "there is a vigorous pulse in them, which keeps the reader awake." It is probable, that this posthumous volume, which, because it is posthu mous, comes forth at once with advantages and disadvantages, will fall into many hands, and pass through at least a third edition.

In every place and, perhaps, most of all in the metropolis-favourite preachers have a considerable sway over the opinions and the feelings of one description of their hearers. Their very name possesses a fascination, which, against their own wishes, will frequently produce the effect represented by the poet, and secure implicit acquiescence. It would be too much to say, that Mr. Worthington was destitute of this ascendancy over a certain class of persons, while he lived: and it may well be apprehended, that, even now, some of his recorded sentiments and expressions may unduly bias those who were indiscriminately partial to him as a religious teacher.

For this reference and cello Xe, point becoming deference and candour, point out a few passages, which I conceive to be erroneous in respect of accuracy of recollection, precision of statement or allusion, justness of taste, propriety of language, and correctness of theological reasoning and scriptural interpretation.

The following passage is extracted from the discourse on Religious Prejudices: Pp. 14, 15.


"I once heard a sermon on the subject of prejudice, from a man I am proud to call my friend, the late Dr. Price. It was delivered in this house; and the impression it made upon my mind will cease but with life. judice,' said this truly excellent man, may be compared to a misty morning in October; a man goes forth to an eminence, and he sees, at the summit of a neighbouring hill, a figure appa rently of gigantic stature, for such the imperfect medium through which he is viewed would make him appear; he goes forward a few steps, and the figure advances towards him; his size lessens as they approach; they draw still nearer, and the extraordinary appearance is gradually, but sensibly diminishing; at last they meet ;-and, perhaps,' said Dr. Price, the man I had taken for a monster, proves to be my own brother. Never was prejudice more forcibly delineated."

Let individuals, familiarly conversant with the respective styles of Dr. Price and Mr. Hugh Worthington, determine, from which of those justly celebrated preachers this language

• Fun. Serm. for Mr. Baxter, (2d ed.,) proceeded. I would not speak with

p. 112.

excessive confidence in a case where

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