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inaccurate or imperfect, the act, and not the note, would be the governing rule.
The third position that is established by the judgment is (3) That the advertisements were accepted as law, and as having the Queen's authority. The advertisements, so far as they refer to the subject before us, may, for the convenience of the reader, here be subjoined.
In the ministration of the Holy Communion in cathedral and collegiate churches, the principal minister shall wear a cope, with gospeller and epistoller agreeably; and, at all other prayers to be said at that Communion table, to use no copes, but surplices.
Item, that every minister saying any public prayers, or ministering the Sacraments or other rites of the Church, shall wear a comely surplice with sleeves, to be provided at the charge of the parish.
Thus, then, the order' referred to in that act, which was the sole authority on the subject of the vestures of the clergy, was distinctly taken, and had the full authority of law as having been taken, in accordance with the express directions of the act.
What then, finally, was the law as regards the ministerial dress of the clergy, for the time that elapsed between the authoritative promulgation of the advertisements and the publication of our present Prayer Book—a period of nearly one hundred years? It was indisputably as follows:-. That, in accordance with the general terms of the act and the subsequent specifications authorised by it, the vesturestandard of the First Prayer Book of Edward the Sixth was distinctly retained and maintained in the Church generally-viz., (1) That a distinctive vesture, and that vesture one of the two
specified alternative vestures 2—viz. a cope—was to be in use
in the ministration of the Holy Communion. (2) That a white vesture, and that vesture the one specified in
the aforesaid Prayer Book-viz. a surplice -_-was to be used in all other public ministrations.
Subject, however, to the following limitations :
2 In the rubrics preceding the Communion Service in the First Prayer Book of Edward the Sixth, the choice is left—vestment or cope;' and this choice appears to have been acted on from the very first, and in favour of the cope. In all the ceremonial services at Lambeth, under the First Book, the dresses used are minutely described, and the distinctive dress was always the cope. The broad remark that has often been made—viz. that the Eucharistic dress in the Church of England, after the Reformation, was from the very first the cope, and not the chasuble--appears fully borne out by all the formal records we have of ceremonial services,
3 The colour and the substance (linen), but especially the former, seem to have been the things always cared for, and especially insisted on. In some extracts from Durel's Public Worship of God 8c., 1662, quoted by Mr. Scott F. Surtees in a pamphlet on the ornaments rubrics, we are told that in the reign of Queen Elizabeth “those that did not lore white made a great noise within and without this land, and bestirred themselves on all sides that they might be dispensed with for wearing the surplice.'
• See Certain Notes' at the end of the book.
(a) That the distinctive vesture or cope was only to be used in
cathedral and collegiate churches;
(6) That the surplice was to be used in all other churches at the
ministering of the Holy Communion, as well as at all other public ministrations.
The spirit of the Edwardian vesture-standard was thus maintained in the Church of England, and one of each pair of the alternative vestures (for the surplice distinctly appears to have been regarded in the First Prayer Book as no less rubrically equivalent to the albs than the cope was to the vestment) that were specified in the First Book, was still to be retained and used in the Church of England, though not by every minister of the same. The
cope was to be used by the capitular clergy, and only by them; the surplice was to be used by all.
This somewhat important aspect of the adjustment of the act and the advertisements that were legally contained in it has been too much lost sight of in discussions of this subject. Elizabeth and her advisers did not want to break with the past. The date of the publication of the First Book was an historic epoch, which was not utterly to be overlooked. The Second Prayer Book had become irrevocably the standard Prayer Book of the Church of England; but, in regard of the ornaments of the Church and of her ministers, a good opportunity, owing to former confusions, offered itself for maintaining a ritual link with the First Book, and this opportunity was not missed. No textual change was made in this Second Book, but in the act to which that book was annexed a proviso was added, in reference to the ornaments of churches and clergy, which went back to the historicar epoch, and preserved in a matter of no little importance a connection with the First Book. The desire to maintain this link, in itself by no means an unreasonable desire, has really been at the bottom of all our difficulties and embarrassments.
We now finally come to the ornaments rubric of 1662, and to the present law of the Church of England in reference to the ministerial dress of the clergy. We have seen distinctly what that law was prior to 1662 ; we have now the plain question still before us–Did the ornaments rubric of 1662 modify or repeal the 25th clause of the statute of Elizabeth and the enactments that had flowed from it, or is it only a restatement of that clause and its enactments in a convenient and summary form ?
The answer is, that it indisputably did not modify or repeal the
• In specifying the dress of the bishop the words 'surplice or alb’are distinctly found. As Pugin says in his Glossary, the surplice was nothing more than an augmentation of the alb. VOL. I.-No. 5.
clause referred to; and this assertion is based on the following con-
done so, and simply fallen back upon the vesture rubrics of the
for some of our present services.
ornaments rubric of 1662, as it is thus alleged to bear, till
nearly two hundred years after that rubric had been formulated. (3) That the form and wording of the ornaments rubric, espe
cially when compared with the ornaments rubric which preceded it, are not only inconsistent with the supposition that it either did repeal, or was intended to repeal, the existing law, but are distinctly favourable to the contrary opinion, viz. that it simply summarises and reaffirms it.
Of these three considerations, the first and second have been set forth in the judgment so clearly and cogently that it is wholly unnecessary to dwell further upon them. The third consideration, however, which seems to us to be considerably the strongest, has not been developed with the same clearness and cogency, and may therefore claim from us a few supplemental comments. As we have already implied, it is here, and precisely here, that we think the judgment has failed to carry conviction to the general reader. It enters shortly into a comparison between the language of the ornaments rubric of 1662 and that of the act and ornaments rubric that preceded it, but it fails to seize upon (1) the broad and patent fact that the present rubric assumes the form of a direction for the Church generally, whereas the ornaments rubric that preceded it was in the form of a direction to the minister, with a limitation at the end. It also fails to notice (2) that the studied adoption of such a general and non-personal form does in itself suggest that if the individual minister desires to know how he is to order himself under the altered rubric, he must go elsewhere. The rubric simply says,
Certain ornaments shall be retained and be in use in the Church of England. But by whom? By every minister? or, as heretofore, distributively, by two classes of ministers, capitular and parochial? Such questions, which emerge out of the very form of the rubric, show at the first glance that a rubric couched in such a form as this could never have been intended to be a new directory rubric for each individual clergyman-a rubric, too, as is alleged, that was to repeal and supersede every other. It suggests exactly the contrary hypothesis. Let us try and make this perfectly plain.
In the first place let this form in which the new rubric is expressed--this passive, non-individualising form--be carefully considered and duly estimated. If we saw the rubric for the first time, we should scarcely fail to regard it as a general statement of what was to be done or observed in the Church of England, not necessarily by every individual minister therein, but by those to whom it might be applicable. It is not said that the minister shall do so and so,' which, in rubrical language, would mean “every minister shall do so and so,' but so and so shall be done in the Church of England. If it could be shown to us, on a first view of the matter, that so and so was really done in the Church by the ministers of that Church, not individually, but collectively, we should be disposed to admit that the rubric was complied with, and we shouid further recognise the pertinence and propriety of the choice of the passive and non-individual form of the directory words. But it can be shown, as we have already shown two or three pages back, that, at the time preceding the formulation of this rubric, Edwardian vestments (under one of the two alternative forms in which the first Edwardian rubrics specify them) were actually in use distributively--the Eucharistic vesture in cathedrals and collegiate churches, the surplice in other places. What then seems to follow? Why, that the rubric was a note and memorandum of an existing practice, and a distinct direction that it was to be continued.
Now suppose, further, that we found, after this first broad view of the form of the rubric, that it actually was couched in as nearly as possible the language of a preceding act, which was intended to do exactly what the rubric appeared to do—conserve and retain an existing state of things without entering into any details-we should feel still more persuaded that our view of the rubric was correct; and we should be prepared at once to reject as bighly improbable the supposition that the rubric was intended to repeal the act, when we learned that both referred to the same subject matter. Now suppose
still further that we were informed that the rubric before us
was substituted for an older rubric of the same general
• It will perhaps set the contrast more clearly before the reader, if we subjoin, side by side, the ornaments rubric of our present Prayer Book and the rubric which it superseded :
Prayer Book of 1662. And here is to be noted that such ornaments of the church and of the ministers thereof, at all times of their ministrations, shall be retained, and be in use, as were in this Church of England, by the authority of Parliament, in the second year of the reign of King Edward the Sixth.
Prayer Book of 1604. And here is to be noted that the minister, at the time of the Communion, and at all other times in his ministration, shall use such ornaments in the church as were in use by authority of Parliament in the second year of the reign of King Edward the Sixth, according to the Act of Parliament set in the beginning of this book.
The point insisted upon is the distinct change of general form, besides the changes in detail. The latter are dwelt upon in the judgment, but not the former.
import, but which appeared to individualise and to specify (subject to a limitation at the end) what each minister was to wear, and was really thought by competent readers to be admissible of a wider scope than was then in practice, we should seem still more clearly to see the reason for the change, and should feel it to be very probable that the alteration from the active to the passive form was to obviate this wider scope being taken, and simply to continue the use of the ornaments to those who for the last hundred years had been using and retaining them. So persuaded should we feel of this, that if any one were to tell us that the new rubric really was intended to have the wider scope, to abrogate all existing rules, and to send each minister back to the Edwardian rubrics, the rejoinder would be prompt. and irrepressible, * Why on earth then did the revisers meddle with the form of the existing rubric?' If the rubric had any superfluous or restraining words, they could easily have omitted them; but to alter, and in such a singularly misleading way for the purpose, a form of words that exactly covered what was required, is, on any supposition of ordinary honesty in the parties concerned, simply and entirely inexplicable.
The foregoing arguments, already excessively strong, are made still more so by the admissions of a writer who has given some attention to the subject under consideration, but whose arguments hitherto have not apparently been found to be very convincing. This writer correctly points out what we have already noticed, that, of the two forms, the 25th clause of the statute of Elizabeth, and the ornaments rubric which appeared in Prayer Books of 1559 and 1604, the rubric is decidedly the more stringent form of words; and the same writer also correctly admits that the obligation of the statute would be fulfilled by a partial use of the vestments. Good. Now, what arethe facts of the case? Why, that when the revisers of 1662 had two» forms before them, one less stringent, and the other more stringent, they deliberately chose the less stringent, and exactly that forme which would be fulfilled by that distributive use of the vestments (viz. of the cope in cathedrals and collegiate churches, as well as of the surplice in all other places) which existed prior to their formulation of the new rubric, and which they obviously intended to continue. Can anything really be stronger for our present case? The retention of the cope was just that guarded use of the vestments, just that link with the second year of Edward the Sixth, which the revisers of 1662
· The Puritans, as is well known, and as the judgment specifies, brought the objection against the ornaments rubric of 1604 that it seemed to bring back the vestments, i.e. not merely what had been in use under the advertisements and canons, but the whole of the Edwardian ornaments. It was only the easily rea movable limitation at the end of the rubric that protected them from ómassvestments. What they would have liked was the plain prohibitory language of the rubric of the Second Book.
. See extracts from a letter published in the Times of June 4, 1877.