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with whom, in the mean time, the King of Spain is mostly at peace, from inability to oppose to them an effectual resistance. The see of Rome, which wants but a slight pretext to spiritualize whatever may open a market for its wares, calls this state of things between the Spaniards and the Africans a perpetual war against infidels; which being, according to the principles of that see, a meritorious Christian act, deserves its pastoral encouragement. For this purpose every year are printed summaries of a Papal bull, which the Spaniards purchase at different prices, according to their rank and wealth, in order to enjoy the indulgences and privileges granted by the Pope in exchange for their alms. The benefits to be derived from the possession of one of these bulls are several plenary indulgences, and leave to eat, during Lent, milk, eggs, and butter, which are otherwise forbidden, under pain of mortal sin, at that season. The sale of these privileges having been found most valuable and extensive, a second, third, and even a fourth bull, of a similar kind, were devised. The flesh bull, as it is called in Spain, allows the purchasers to eat meat during Lent,

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every Sunday, Monday, Tuesday, and Thursday, except in Passion Week. The third bull is called the compounding bull. By possessing one of these documents, and giving a certain sum, at the discretion of any priest authorised to hear confessions, to the fund of the holy cruzade ; any property may be kept, which, having been obtained by robbery and extortion, cannot be traced to its right owners for restitution. This composition with the Pope and the King, is made by depositing the sum appointed by the confessor in an iron chest fixed outside the doors of churches: a comfortable resource indeed for the tender consciences of peculators and extortioners, two very numerous classes in Spain. The fourth bull is to be purchased for the benefit of the deceased, and is called the defunct bull. The name of any dead person being entered on the bull, a plenary indulgence is, by this means, believed to be conveyed to his soul, if suffering in purgatory. To secure, however, a double sale, the three latter bulls are made of no effect, unless the original summary of the cruzade be possessed by the person who

wishes to enjoy the dispensations and privileges,

therein set forth. It is also a very common practice to bury these bulls with the corpses of those whom they are intended to benefit. The tax thus levied upon the people of Spain, is divided between the King and the Pope: yet it is not the money which, in this and similar transactions, proves most beneficial to Rome; the habit of spiritual dependence which it supports among the Spaniards is, no doubt, its most valuable result to that see. The Spanish Cortes, who were bold enough to reduce the tithes by one half; when struggling hard to shake off the silent yet formidable influence of the Pope, found their power inadequate to the task: well knowing that were he to withdraw one of these bulls, the mass of the people would instantly rise against them. I have selected this fact among thousands, that prove the accession of power which the doctrine of indulgences produces to the see of Rome. The belief in purgatory is so inseparable from the former tenet, that I need not enlarge on the peculiar advantages which Rome has derived from it. I will only observe how fortunately for the interests of the church of Rome, not only the existence, but even the mutual help and connexion of her peculiar doctrines, have happened. The power of remitting canonical penance would have been useless on the cessation of penitential discipline: but TRADITION having about the same time brought purgatory to light, offered an ample scope to the power of the Roman keys. Transubstantiation now presented the means of repeating the sacrifice of the cross for those who were supposed to be undergoing the purification by fire. The whole system, indeed, is surprisingly linked together, and the very connexion of its parts, tending to secure the influence and power of the source from whence it flows; gives it the appearance of an original invention, enlarged from the gradual suggestions of previous advantages. The worship of saints, relics, and images might, when tradition began to spread it, have appeared less connected with the wealth and power of the church of Rome; yet none of its spiritual resources has proved more productive of both. Europe is covered with sanctuaries and churches, which owe their existence and revenues to some

reported miraculous appearance of an image, or the presence, real or pretended, of some relic. To form a correct notion of the influence which such places have upon the people, it is necessary to have lived where they exist. But the house of Loretto alone, would be sufficient to give some idea of the power and wealth which the church must have derived from similar sources, when the whole of Christendom was more ignorant and superstitious than the most degraded portions of it are at present. Of this fact, however, I am perfectly convinced by long observation, that were it possible to abolish sanctuaries, properly so called, and leave the same number of churches without the favourite virgins and saints which give them both that peculiar denomination and their popular charm; more than half the blind deference which the multitude pay to the clergy, and through the clergy to Rome, would quickly disappear. The advantages resulting to Rome from the combined effect of indulgences, relics, saints and their images, are not, however, derived only indirectly through the deference enjoyed by her clergy. The bond thereby created between the

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