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We very much regret that our limits will not allow of our entering on this occasion upon the all-important subjects which arise for consideration when we consider the Life and Times of St. Thomas, We are compelled by circumstances to limit ourselves to a mere notice of this Work, and to pass over entirely the very important publication of Professor Stanley in his records of Canterbury, to which we hope to draw attention when we can resume the subject.
A good deal of new and original matter will be found collected and brought forward by Canon Morris
and indeed in every respect the work will most amply repay a careful perusal. Among other new matter our readers will find an account of the miracle that happened to Edward Grim, and which now is published for the first time.
“ Edward Grim gives the following interesting account of a miracle which the Saint wrought in his behalf. It is the healing of the arm that was broken by William de Tracy, when Grim held it up to ward off the first blow from the head of the Martyr, who did not lift a hand in his own defence. The doctor had tried in vain for nearly a year to set the broken bone ; when one night the venerable Martyr stood beside him, and, taking hold of his arm,
wrapped it in a wet linen cloth, saying, 'Go; you are healed.' The cloth was wetted with holy water and the Martyr's blood, and, by the favour of God and St. Thomas, the bones united and the arm healed. • A proof of its healing,' says Grim, is the arm itself, the hand of which has written these things for you to read. And God has done many other things,' he continues, “to prove His love for our blessed Martyr: by cleansing the lepers, as we have ourselves seen; by putting devils to flight, by healing the dropsical, the paralytic, the deaf, the dumb, the blind, the lame, and those suffering from all manner of sickness : in all of which things we are awaiting the faithful testimony of the church of Canterbury, in whose sight and knowledge all these things are known to have been done.”—pp. 366-367.
So also is the account of the Saxon School and Church in Rome given in Note 26, p. 405.
"The Cardinal-deacon Peter to the Archbishop of Canterbury. We believe that your Lordship is aware that the Church of Blessed Mary of the Saxons (quæ Sassonorum dicitur) in Rome is appointed by the considerate provision of the Roman Pontiffs for the reception of the English who visit the threshold of the Apostles, that they may here find and receive consolation and charitable assistance after their various labours, as in a house of their own. Through
our sins, it has come to such poverty, that but a few clerics and hardly any lay person can be found to serve the church and attend upon the pilgrims. Our Holy Father, Pope Alexander, out of compassion for its poverty and misery, has given in its favour exhortatory letters for England, which you will see. Since we know how ready and willing your goodness is in every thing relating to piety and religion, we much trust in your brotherliness, and we pray you in the Lord to receive kindly the bearer of these presents, Nicholas, a canon of the aforesaid church, and, according to the tenor of the letters of our lord the Pope, to vouchsafe at our prayer to grant him your letters for reverence of the Mother of God. Farewell in the Lord.'” (Ep. Gilb. Fol. ii. p. 138.)
“ This is the latest notice of the church of the Saxon schoob with which the writer is acquainted. The Bull of Innocent III., which erected the hospital of S. Spirito, gives to that new foundation the church of Blessed Mary in Sassia, formerly attached to the Saxon school ;' and in the hall of the hospital is an inscription commemorating the good deeds of that Pope, amongst which is recorded, Angeli monitu, expositis infantibus excipiendis, educandisque, hospitium in veteri Saxonum schola designat.
" Ven. Bede (Hist. Eccl. v. 8.) relates, that in 727, Ina, king of the West Saxons, visited Rome in the pontificate of Gregory II., and that at that time many English of all ranks and states of life were accustomed to perform the same pilgrimage. Matthew of Westminster (ad ann. 727, ed. Francof. 1601, p. 135) adds, that he founded in Rome the English school, to which the kings and royal family of England, with the Bishops, priests, and clerics, might come to be instructed in doctrine and the Catholic faith. And near this house he built a church in honour of the Blessed Virgin Mary, in which the English might say Mass, and where they might be buried, if they happened to die in Rome. For the support of this foundation, be enacted that the penny called Romescot should be paid from every family to Blessed Peter and the church of Rome.'
“ Matthew Paris (ed. 1644, p, 19) tells us, that Offa II., King of the Mercians, in 794, in thanksgiving for the canonisation of St. Alban by Pope Adrian, extended the contribution of Peter's pence in behalf of the English school, quæ tunc Romæ floruit, to his province. According to Anastasius Bibliothecarius, this school and church were burnt down, in 817, and Pope Paschal I. rebuilt them ; and they were again destroyed by fire in the conflagration of the Borgo, that the pencil of Raffaelle has rendered so famous; after which they were rebuilt from the foundatious by Pope St. Leo. IV. One of the gates of the Leonine city, from which Leo IV. gave his blessing to the burning suburb, was called, from the neighbourhood of the school, the Saxon Postern,' Saxonum posterula ; and the same writer assures us that the name of the Borgo' was derived from our countrymen : Per quorumdam gentis Anglorum desidiam omnis VOL. XLVIII.-No. XCV.
Anglorum habitatio, quæ in eorum lingua Burgus dicitur, flamma ignis combusta est.
“ Passing over the visits of several Saxon kings to Rome, by which new privileges were conferred upon the national establish. ment, we find the following interesting mention of it in the letter of Pope Alexander II. to William the Conqueror, in 1068 (Baron, ad ann.): Nam ut bene nosti, donec Angli fideles erant pice devotionis respectu ad cognitionem religionis annuam pensionem Apostolicae Sedi exhibebant, ex qua pars Romano Pontifici, pars Ecclesiæ S. Mariæ quae vocatur Schola Anglorum in usum fratrum deferebatur. It is probable that the Saxon school had fallen into poverty before the time of St. Thomas ; for when St. Anselm visited Rome, the time that he did not spend at the Lateran palace was passed at a spot called Sclavia (in a curious metrical account of his life amongst the MSS. of the Vatican Library, no. 499, p. 123), now called Torre de' Schiavi' beyond the Porta Maggiore. It is interesting to add from the same MS. (our knowledge of which is due to the investigations of a German scholar, Karl Greith), that there was on this spot a well famous for the cure of fevers, which was called St. Anselm's well.'”
Not long after the publication of Canon Morris's book, another life of our Saint appeared. It is needless to say that it is not to the Work of a Canon of Canterbury we should look for any admiration for, or sympathy with, the great man who, more than any other, has given the name of Canterbury a world-wide fame. Still, we had a right, we thought, to expect something better than this book from Canon Robertson. Of late, St. Thomas has met with such fair usage, contrasted at least with the ancient bigotry and virulence, that, after even Lord Campbell had written of him with something of justice and appreciation, we are indeed surprised to find that any man claiming to be an historian could return to the exploded style of earlier writers. Indeed, Canon Robertson gives one the impres, sion that he is animated by a spirit of personal dislike and animosity.
In a literary point of view there is little to take exception at in this volume. Traces of its origin in the shape of Articles in a Periodical, such as the mention of the ballad of “ Lord Bateman” (p. 12.), give it at times an unpleasant air of flippancy. Neither can we characterize as good taste the insertion of the title “Canon of Northampton between inverted commas, in a mere list of works referred to (p. xi.). We trace also an eagerness to attack the biography that so immediately preceded his own. For
instance, Mr. Morris says, (p. 256) “ It did not, however, pass unnoticed that Robert and Nigel de Sacville, the king's seal-bearers, who had been excommunicated at Vezelay, died young ; and that Robert, the vice-archdeacon of Canterbury and the priest of Chierlewde, died of such grievous ulcers, that they seemed stricken by the hand of God.” What is there in this to justify Mr. Robertson's note to p. 264? “Mr. Morris is not ashamed to repeat with satisfaction after Fitz-Stephen, that Nigel and other objects of Becket's denunciations died prematurely or unhappily.” Again : "Mr. Buss is so indifferent a Catholic' as to omit this miracle ; not so Mr. Morris.” (p. 138.) The latter writer does not relate the story of the fish leaping into the Saint's lap as a miracle, but he simply gives the fact as the biographers narrate it. Mr. Robertson inserts into his text the word “miraculously," and then subjoins the impertinent note we have quoted. The Canterbury Canon (p. 70, note.) says, “ Mr. Morris (who, by the way, supposes Henry the Sixth to have been king in 1494,) tells us that additional honours were bestowed on St. Anselm in 1720, by Clement XI.,
at the prayer of King James III.!'" Now first, is it fair when he found in Mr. Morris's book" at the request of King Henry VI.” to reproduce it, in the shape in which an error of the press is almost impossible, as "Henry the
Sixth?" And does Mr. Robertson learn now for the first time that the Holy See in 1720 was in the habit of speaking of “ King James III?” The Canon of Canterbury had done better if he had corrected his own text by the very note in Mr. Morris's book he so cavils at, He says that "the canonization of St. Anselm was delayed until the reign of Henry VII., when it was decreed by Alexander VI., at the instance of Cardinal Morton;" and the foot-note adds, " The bull, dated 1494, is in Wilkins, iii. 641." What Mr. Robertson here calls “ the bull of St. Anselm's canonization," is the very document quoted by Mr. Morris from Spelman, and rightly described by him thus:-"Pope Alexander VI., on the 4th October, 1494, following the example of Pope Innocent, (probably VIII.) instituted a commission to report to the Holy See at the request of King Henry VII." In our researches we have never met with the bull of the canonization of St. Anselm.
Once more; Mr. Robertson (p. 325.) says of the notorious letter of Gilbert Foliot, “Mr. Morris seems also to admit its genuineness, while he attempts to profit by the suspicion that has been cast upon it." We shall have occasion to quote a part of Mr. Morris's note to which reference is here made. It contains a nierited reproach to Lord Campbell, and it now, unfortunately, is as applicable to Mr. Robertson. We think our readers will be of opinion that Mr, Morris has made no unfair "attempt to profit” by the fact that Mr. Berington and Dr. Lingard have rejected this letter as spurious. It is not surely possible to speak of a letter which has been assailed by writers of such weight as if it were unassailable.
“Lord Campbell has chosen to attribute to St. Thomas the exclamation at Clarendon: ‘It is my master's pleasure that I should forswear myself, which I resolve to do, and to repent afterwards as I may.' (Chancellors, i. p. 75.) Surely he should have told his readers that his sole authority for his assertion was this production of a bitter enemy, and that even of this doubts of the genuineness have been entertained.”—Morris's Life of St. Thomas, p. 416.
Mr. Robertson makes the following statement: (p. 101.) “At length the Archbishop was moved; he withdrew for a short time for consideration, and on returning said to his brethren : 'It is the Lord's will that I should forswear myself; for the present I submit, and incur the guilt of perjury, to repent hereafter as I may. To this he has appended a note: “Dr. Lingard attempts to throw disa credit on this statement, on account of the source from which it comes the letter or pamphlet of Foliot. But even if that letter were a forgery, the accounts of the biographers bear it out in all essential points as to the occurrence at Clarendon, except that the letter names Joscelin of Salisbury as having stood firm with the other bishops, whom it accuses Becket of deserting.'
In this Mr. Robertson has been guilty of a far more grievous delinquency than Lord Campbell. To pass over the translation of “Est domini mei voluntas,” which the latter gives as “. It is my master's pleasure,” while with Mr. Robertson it assumes the blasphemous shape of, “ It is the Lord's will that I should forswear myself;" we have this grievous difference between the two, that Lord Campbell omits to state the source from which he derives this speech, but Mr. Robertson assigns one that is distinctly erroneous. It is this very speech to which the note is