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cerned in the issue of such questions, frequently thought themselves competent to dispute the field; and, conversant as they were with ecclesiastical antiquity, found in its interminable records sufficient weapons to protract the war, though not to subdue the foe. Hence, partly in the last years of the sixteenth century, but incomparably more in the present, we find an essential change in the character of theological controversy. It became less reasoning, less scriptural, less general and popular, but far more patristic, that is, appealing to the testimonies of respect for the fathers, and altogether more historical than before. Several consequences of material influence on religious opinion sprang naturally from this method of conducting the defence of Protestantism. One was, that it contracted very greatly the circle of those who, upon any reasonable interpretation of the original principle of personal judgment, could exercise it for themselves; it became the privilege of the deeply learned alone. Another that, from the real obscurity and incoherence of ecclesiastical authorities, those who had penetrated farthest into that province of learning were least able to reconcile them; and, however they might disguise it from the world while the pen was in their hands, were themselves necessarily left, upon many points, in an embarrassing state of doubt and confusion. A third effect was, that upon these controversies of Catholic tradition, the church of Rome had very often the best of the argument; and this was occasionally displayed in those wrestling-matches between religious disputants, which were held, publicly or privately, either with the vain hope of coming to an agreement, or to settle the faith of the hearers. And from the two last of these causes it arose, that many Protestants went over to the church of Rome, and that a new theological system was contrived to combine what had been deemed the incompatible tenets of those who had burst from each other with such violence in the preceding century.
10. This retrocession, as it appeared, and as in spirit it was, towards the system abandoned in the first Especially impetuosity of the Reformation, began in England Laud. about the conclusion of the sixteenth century. It was evidently connected with the high notions of ecclesiastical
power, of an episcopacy by unbroken transmission from the apostles, of a pompous ritual, which the rulers of the Anglican church took up at that time in opposition to the Puritans. It rapidly gained ground in the reign of James, and still more of his son. Andrews, a man far more learned in patristic theology than any of the Elizabethan bishops, or perhaps than any of his English contemporaries except Usher, was, if not the founder, the chief leader of this school. Laud became afterwards, from his political importance, its more conspicuous head; and from him it is sometimes styled. In his conference with the Jesuit Fisher, first published in 1624, and afterwards with many additions in 1639, we find an attempt, not feeble, and we may believe, not feigned, to vindicate the Anglican Protestantism, such as he meant it to be, against the church of Rome, but with much deference to the name of Catholic, and the authority of the ancient fathers. It is unnecessary to observe, that this was the prevalent language of the English church in that period of forty years, which was terminated by the civil war; and that it was accompanied by a marked enhancement of religious ceremonies, as well as by a considerable approximation to several doctrines and usages of the Romanists.
11. The progress of the latter church for the first thirty years of the present century was as striking and uninterrupted as it had been in the final period of the sixteenth. Victory crowned its banners on every side. The signal defeats of the elector-palatine and the king of Denmark, the reduction of Rochelle, displayed an evident superiority in the ultimate argument to which the Protestants had been driven, and which silences every other; while a rigid system of exclusion from court favour and of civil discouragement, or even of banishment, and
Defections to the Catholic
P Ce qu'il y a de particulier dans cette conférence, c'est qu'on y cite beaucoup plus les pères de l'église, que n'ont accoutumé de faire les Protestans
de deça la mer. Comme l'église Anglicane a une vénération toute particulière pour l'antiquité, c'est par là que les Catholiques Romains l'attaquent ordinairement. Bibl. Univ. i. 336. Laud, as well as Andrews, maintained "that the true and real body of Christ is in that blessed sacrament." Conference
with Fisher, p. 299 (edit. 1639). And afterwards, "for the Church of England, nothing is more plain than that it believes and teaches the true and real presence of Christ in the eucharist." Nothing is more plain than the contrary, as Hall, who belonged to a different school of theology, though the friend of Laud, has in equivalent words observed. Hall's works (Pratt's edition), vol. ix. p. 374.
suppression of public worship, as in the Austrian dominions, brought round the wavering and flexible to acquiesce with apparent willingness in a despotism which they could neither resist nor escape. The nobility, both in France and Germany, who at the outset had been the first to embrace a new faith, became afterwards the first to desert it. Many also of the learned and able Protestants gave evidence of the jeopardy of that cause by their conversion. It is not, however, just to infer that they were merely influenced by this apprehension. Two other causes mainly operated; one, to which we have above alluded, the authority ascribed to the traditions of the church as recorded by the writers called fathers, and with which it was found. very difficult to reconcile all the Protestant creed; another, the intolerance of the reformed churches, both Lutheran and Calvinistic, which gave as little latitude as that which they had quitted.
12. The defections, from whatever cause, are numerous in the seventeenth century. But two, more wavering of eminent than any who actually renounced the Casaubon, Protestant religion, must be owned to have given evident signs of wavering, Casaubon and Grotius. The proofs of this are not founded merely on anecdotes which might be disputed, but on their own language. Casaubon was
In his correspondence with Scaliger, no indications of any vacillation as to religion appear. Of the unfortunate conference between Du Plessis Mornay and Du Perron, in the presence of Henry IV., where Casaubon himself had been one of the umpires, he speaks with great regret, though with a full acknowledgment that his champion had been worsted. Quod scribis de congressu Diomedis cum Glauco, sic est omnino, ut tu judicas rectè. Vir optimus, si eum sua prudentia orbi Gallico satis explorata non defecisset, nunquam ejus certaminis aleam subiisset. After much more he concludes: Equidem in lacrymas prope adducor, quoties subit animo tristissima illius diei species, cum de ingenua nobilitate, de excellenti ingenio, de ipsa denique veritate pompaticè adeo vidi triumphatum. Epist. 214. (Oct. 1600.) See also a letter to Heinsius on the same subject. Casaub. Epist. 809. In a letter to Perron himself, in 1604, he professed to adhere to
Scripture alone, against those who vetustatis auctoritatem pro ratione obtendunt. Epist. 417. A change, however, came gradually over his mind, and he grew fascinated by this very authority of antiquity. In 1609 he had, by the king's command, a conference on religion with Du Perron, but very reluctantly, and, as his biographer owns, quibusdam visus est quodammodo cespitasse. Casaubon was, for several reasons, no match in such a disputation for Perron. In the first place, he was poor and weak, and the other powerful, which is a reason that might dispense with our giving any others; but, secondly, he had less learning in the fathers; and, thirdly, he was entangled by deference for these same fathers; finally, he was not a man of as much acuteness and eloquence as his antagonist. The issue of battle does not follow the better cause, but the sharper sword; especially when there is so much ignoratio elenchi as in this case.
staggered by the study of the fathers, in which he discovered many things, especially as to the eucharist, which he could not in any manner reconcile with the tenets of the French Huguenots. Perron used to assail him with argu
Perron continued to persecute Casaubon with argument, whenever he met him in the king's library. Je vous confesse (the latter told Wytenbogart) qu'il m'a donné beaucoup des scrupules qui me restent, et auxquels je ne sçais pas bien répondre. . . il me fâche de rougir. L'escapade que je prens est que je n'y puis répondre, mais que j'y penserai. Casauboni Vita (ad edit. Epistolarum, 1709). And in writing to the same Wytenbogart, Jan. 1610, we find similar signs of wavering. Me, ne quid dissimulem, hæc tanta diversitas a fide veteris ecclesiæ non parum turbat. Ne de aliis dicam, in re sacramentaria a majoribus discessit Lutherus, a Luthero Zuinglius, ab utroque Calvinus, a Calvino qui postea scripserunt. Nam constat mihi ac certissimum est, doctrinam Calvini de sacra eucharistia longe aliam esse ab ea quæ in libro observandi viri Molinai nostri continetur, et quæ vulgo in ecclesiis nostris auditur. Itaque Molinæum qui oppugnant, Calvinum illi non minus objiciunt, quam aliquem è veteribus ecclesiæ doctoribus. Si sic pergimus, quis tandem erit exitus? Jam quod idem Molinæus, omnes veterum libros suæ doctrinæ contrarios respuit, ut vobodiparous, cui mediocriter docto fidem faciet? Falsus illi Cyrillus, Hierosolymorum episcopus; falsus Gregorius Nyssenus, falsus Ambrosius, falsi omnes. Mihi liquet falli ipsum, et illa scripta esse verissima, quæ ille pronuntiat drypapa. Ep. 670. See also Ep. 1043, written from Paris in the same year. He came now to England, and to his great satisfaction found the church and its prelates exactly what he would wish. Illud solatio mihi est, quod in hoc regno speciem agnosco veteris ecclesiæ, quam ex patrum scriptis didici. Adde quod episcopis ὁσημερα συνδιαγω doctissimis, sapientissimis, SUTECITATOK, et quod novum mihi est, priscæ ecclesiæ amantissimis. (Lond. 1611.) Ep. 703. His letters are full of similar language. See 743, 744, 772, &c. He combined this inordinate respect for authority with its natural concomitant, a desire to restrain free inquiry. Though his patristic lore should have made him not unfavourable to the Arminians, he writes to Bertius, one of their number, against the liberty of
conscience they required. Illa quam passim celebras, prophetandi libertas, bonis et piis hujus ecclesiæ viris mirum in modum suspecta res est et odiosa. Nemo enim dubitat de pietate Christiana actum esse inter vos, si quod videris agere, illustrissimis ordinibus fuerit semel persuasum, ut liberum unicuique esse velint, via regia relicta semitam ex animi libidine sibi aliisque aperire. Atqui veritas, ut scis, in omnibus rebus scientiis et disciplinis unica est, et ra wvY TAUTS inter ecclesiæ veræ notas, fateantur omnes, non est postrema. Ut nulli esse dubium possit, quin tot reλvexide semitæ totidem sint errorum diverticula. Quod olim de politicis rebus prudentissimi philosophorum dixerunt, id mihi videtur multo etiam magis in ecclesiasticis locum habere, s ayar ελευθερίαν εις δουλειαν εξ αναγκης τελευτᾶν, et πᾶσαν τυραννίδα αναρχίας esse κρεστην [sic!] et optabiliorem. Ego qui inter pontificios diu sum in patri mea versatus, hoc tibi possum affirmare, nulla re magis stabiliri την τυραννίδα του χξζ, quam dissentionibus nostris et dissidiis.
Meric Casaubon's "Pietas contra maledicos Patrii Nominis ac Religionis Hostes," is an elaborate vindication of his father against all charges alleged by his adversaries. The only one that presses is that of wavering in religion. And here Meric candidly owns that his father had been shaken by Perron about 1610. (See this tract subjoined to Almeloveen's edition of the epistles, p. 89.) But afterwards, by dint of theological study, he got rid of the scruples the cardinal had infused into him, and became a Protestant of the new Anglican school, admiring the first six centuries, and especially the period after Constantine: Hoc sæculum cum duobus sequentibus ακμη της εκκλησίας, flos ipse ecclesiae et ætas illius aurea queat nuncupari. Prolegomena in Exercitationes in Baronium. His friend Scaliger had very different notions of the fathers. "The fathers," says he, in his blunt way, "are very ignorant, know nothing of Hebrew, and teach us little in theology. Their interpretations of Scripture are strangely perverse. Even Polycarp, who was a disciple of the apostles, is full of errors. It will not do to say that, because they were near the apos
ments he could not parry. If we may believe this cardinal, he was on the point of declaring publicly his conversion before he accepted the invitation of James I. to England; and even while in England he promoted the Catholic cause more than the world was aware. This is more than we can readily believe; and we know that he was engaged both in maintaining the temporal rights of the crown against the school of Bellarmin, and in writing animadversions on the ecclesiastical annals of Baronius. But this opposition to the extreme line of the ultra-montanists might be well compatible with a tendency towards much that the reformers had denounced. It seemed, in truth, to disguise the corruptions of the Catholic church by rendering the controversy almost what we might call personal; as if Rome alone, either by usurping the headship of the church, which might or might not have bad consequences, or by its encroachments on the civil power, which were only maintained by a party, were the sole object of that religious opposition, which had divided one half of Europe from the other. Yet if Casaubon, as he had much inclination to do, being on ill terms with some in England, and disliking the country, had returned to France, it
tolic age, they are never wrong." Scaligerana Secunda. Le Clerc has some good remarks on the deference shown by Casaubon to the language held by the fathers about the eucharist, which shook his protestantism. Bibl. Choisie, xix. 230.
Perroniana. Grot. Epist. p. 939. Several of his letters attest his desire of returning. He wrote to Thuanus imploring his recommendation to the queen-regent. But he had given much offence by writing against Baronius, and had very little chance of an indemnity for his prebend of Canterbury, if he had relinquished that on leaving England. This country, however, though he sometimes calls it μακαρων νησος, did not suit his disposition. He was never on good terms with Savile, the most presumptuous of the learned, according to him, and most scornful, whom he accused of setting on Montagu to anticipate his animadversions on Baronius, with some suspicion, on Casaubon's part, of stealing from him. Ep. 794, 848, 849. But he seems himself to have become generally unpopular, if we may trust his own account. Ego mores
Anglorum non capio. Quoscunque habui