« PreviousContinue »
the death warrant of the established church, and the instrument of their own ruin?
• It cannot escape you; my Lord, that at present, (and thank God for it) the church enjoys a very large majority against the combined members of all the several tolerated denominations of Christians. According to the most authentic calculation, she can produce more than four of her members to one dissenter. So that if the constitution of your committçe had been formed upon a fair and righteous basis, there plainly should have been at least four chuiclimen to one of the other denomi-, nations. But here, my Lord, strange to tell, you propose to deprive the church of her natural numbers and strength, you take from her, her best means of defence, and invite her into the midst of her sworn enemies ! - Where is the liberality of this, my Lord! Where is the justice? The first temptation held out to the public, is the liberal basis of your establishment. Is it liberal, my Lord, to deprive one party of more than three fourths of its strength, and throw it among the others, who have no other right to it, nor expectation of it, but what they derive from your Lordship? No doubt, my Lord, if you can gain your point, and can tempt the clergy into your scheme, there will not be a single Nonconformist, Papist, Socinian, or Quaker, silent in your praise. No doubt your unbounded libe rality will be sounded forth, by, every gospel-preacher in the church, and every twauging teacher in the conventicle. Ungrateful wretches would they be, were they to pass by unnoticed, and un-eulogised so great a friend to their cause.. A friend indeed; whose unoxampled, zeal and exertions in their favour, must raise their memory to their halcyon days of 1648, and fill their beating bosoms, with well-grounded hopes of once more realizing those scenes, which, but for your Lordship, and a few other liberal men, they little expected to see. But what will the church say? What will four-fifths of the nation think of your Lordship's liberal basis," which is treacherously withdrawn from the established church, to build up the walls of conventi. cles and meeting-houses? Do you expect that any honest clergyman, in his sound senses, can relish your Lordship’s liberality, for such conduct as this ?. It is too gross, my Lord, to pass. I am lost in astonishment and grief, when I see a man who professes so much good-will to the pure christianity of the country; whose well-known integrity and respectable talents, might have tempted the woe-worn church to louk up to his piety and pity for relief; whose rank and credit in the world, afford him inuch ability to bestow it; when I see such a man engaged in a fearful scheme, by which our Zion may be pulled down, and her enemies exalted upon her ruins--alas! for these things I weep : “ mine eye, mine eye runneth down with water, because the comforter that should relieve my soul, is far froin me." Vol. VIII, Churchm. Mag. March 1805.
We should gladly have multiplied our extracts from this interesting and admirably written pamphlet, which deserves the serious perusal of every person who possesses a sincere regard for the pure doctrines and discipline of the established Church. - In a postscript to the letter, the author states his hav. ing been informed that an edition of the Bible in the Welch language, is now preparing by this society,“ in which such liberties are taken as are by no means warrantable."
The GUARDIAN of EDUCATION, a periodical Work, con
ducted by Mrs. TRIMMER. Vol. III, for 1804, THIS Volume is the first which has been completed
since the most accomplished and excellent conduc. tress projected the new series of her very useful work; publishing it once a quarter, instead of once a month. Having gone pretty much at length into the merits of this publication, in our 5th Vol. p. 390, and in our 6th Vol. p 273, we deem it unnecessary to discuss them afresh; and we think it quite sufficient, to announce to our readers, that it is carried on with the same spirit and ability with which it commenced. The country at large, the members of our established church in particular, and we may add, all to whom the religious education of children is a care, are much indebted to MRS. TRIMMER, for the exertions which she makes in the cause of truth and sound principles; the becoming zeal with which she represses the audacity of the disciples of the new school, and the happy faculty which she possesses of exposing their sophisms, and detecting the nefarious artifices of those who lie in wait to deceive."-We have read with great satisfaction an essay carried on through the four numbers which compose this volume, by way of a sequel to the Essay or Christian Education, which appeared in the preceding volumes. This essay shews the artifices of the l'empter in all ages of the world; and blazons in proper colours the whole “ Mystery of Iniquity," which haying worked from the beginning still worketh upon earth,
exalting itself against, whilst at the same time it invor Juntarily beareth witness to the.“ Mystery of Godliness."
-But we forbear to enlarge upon a set of papers which we have read with equal delight and edification.-We heartily wish success, and would willingly contribute our endeavour to give celebrity to the work which contains them. We are well assured, that the just character we gave of the GUARDIAN of EDUCATION, increased considerably the demand for the publication. We congratulate ourselves upon it, and we are certain, that in having done this, we have done much good,
Strictures upon an historical Review of the State of Ire
land, üy Francis Plowden, Esq. or a Justification of the Conduct of the English Governments in that Country, from the Reign of Henry the Second, to the Union of Great Britain and Ireland. 8vo. pp. 233.
ART of this volume was published in the British Cri
tic, as a review of Mr. Plowden's book, and having drawn from that gentleman a very angry invective, the author has reprinted his strictures in the present form, and completely exposed the ignorance and illiberality of the Catholic historian. Who the critic is, we cannot guess, but he is evidently a writer of superior talents, and minutely acquainted with the history and present state of Ireland.
As the Roman Catholics of that country have come forward with a petition to the legislature, claiming eman cipation as a matter of right, the perusal of this volume will enable any unprejudiced person to judge how far their pretensions are just, and whether their plea of loyalty is well grounded. A view of the famous, or rather infamous society of United Irishmen, we shall here extract:
“In this year (1792) was founded the celebrated Society of United Irishmen, whose object was“ to promote a brotherhood of affection (for the purposes of insurrection and treason) amongst Irishmen of every religious persua: sion;" and into which were immediately associated, Dissenters and Catholicks, Deists, Free-thinkers, No-thinkers,
and other Protestants of this description. Theobald Wolfe Tone, tren agent to the Catholic Committee, was the father of this society, and the counposer of some of the most admired manifestoes that issued from both. 1'"'* Theacts of this period,” Mr. Plowden says,
are to be retailed as they took place, and not as they may now appear in the cyes of those, who consider' every act or transaction as tainted with treason, because some of the actors in them were afterwards guilty of treason. It is requisite to show, that these first Societies of United Irishmen differed from tliose who afterwards entered into rebellion; here nothing was secret, nothing ambiguous, nothing inconsistent with the duty of a loyal subject.' Look at the Prospectus of this Society.
“ Idem sentire, dicere, agere.” " It is proposed that, at this conjuncture, a Socieťy shall be instituted in this city, having much of the secresy, and somewhat of the ceremonial attached to freemasonry; with so much secrecy as may cominunicate curiosity, uncertainty, and expectation to the minds of surrounding men: with so much impressive and affecting ceremony.in all its internal æconomy, as without impeding real business, inay strike the soul through the senses, and addressing the whole' man, may animate his philosophy by the energy of his passions. Secrecy. is expedient and necessary: it will make the bond of union more cohesive, and the spirit of this union more ardent and condensed ; it, will envelope this dense flame with a cloud of gloomy ambiguity, that will not only fa cilitate his own agency, but will at the same time confound and terrify its enemies by their ignorance of the design, the extent, the direction, or the consequence. It will throw a veil over those individuals, whose professional prudence might make them wish to be conccaled, until a manifestation of themselves became absolutely necessary: and, lastly, secrecy is necessary, because it is by, no means certain, that a country so great a stranger to itself as Ireland, where the North and the South, and the East and the West, mcèt to wonder at each other, is yet prepared for the adoption of one political faith ; while there may be individuals from each of these quarters ready to adopt such a profession, and to propagate it with their best abilities, when necessary, with their blood.”
6. Let its name be the Irish Brotherhood.”
And that its two great objects, Revolution and Separation from England, were not concealed from its
commencement, the following extracts will clearly prove :
"Can the renovation in the Constitution, which we all deem necessary, be accomplished by the ways of the Constitution? The evil, says Junius, lies too deep to be cured by any remedy less than some great convulsions, which may bring back the Constitution to its original principles, or utterly destroy it... Is this opinion still truer when applied to this country, or is it false ?"
“ When the aristocracy come forward, the people fall backward. When the people come forward, the aristocracy, fearful of being left behind,' insinuate themselves into our ranks, and rise into timid leaders, or treacherous auxiliaries ; they mean to make us their instruments: let us rather make them our instruments..one of the two must happen : the people must serve the purposes of party, or the party must emerge in the mightiness of the people, and Hercules will then lean upon his club."
“ On the 14th of July, the day which shall ever commemorate the French Revolution, let this Society pour out their first libation to European Liberty, eventually the liberty of the world; and with their hands joined in each other, and their eyes raised to Heaven, in his presence who breathed into them an everliving soul, let them swear to maintain the rights and prerogatives of Ireland as an INDEPENDENT KINGDOM.-Dieu et *mon droit! is the motto of Kings... Dieu et la liberty ! exclaim‘ed Voltaire, when he first beheld Franklin, his fellow-citizen of the world.-Dieu et nos droits ! let Irishmen cry aloud to cach other, the cry of mercy, of justice, and of victory !"
The first article of their Constitution was in these words:
“ ist. This Society is constituted for the purpose of forward ing a brotherhood of affection, a communion of rights, and an union of power among Irishmen of every religious persuasion: and thereby to obtain a compleat reform in the Legislature, founded on the principles of civil, political, and religious liberty.”
And the second paragraph of their oath or test, was as follows:
“ I do further declare, (in the awful presence of God) that neither hopes, fcars, rewards, or punishments, shall ever induce me directly or indirectly, to inform on, or give evidence against any member or members of this or similar Societirs, for any act or expression done or made collectively or individually, in or out of this Society, in pursuance of the spirit of this obligation,"
“ Imust confess, that I cannot discover much ambiguity in their Prospectus, Resolution, and Test ;. bụt if they do