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vated character than the Bishop of London) I would to appease the mob, and so the men of that town were endeavour to explain this precipitate seizure of patron. well pleased, and did devour the meats with a great age--and that is, that the livings assigned to him in appetite ; and then you might have seen my lords this remarkable scheme are all very valuable, and the standing with empty plates, and looking wistfully at incumbents all very old. But I shall pass over this each other, till Simon of Gloucester, he who disputed scheme as a mere supposition, invented to bring the with Leoline the Monk, stook up among them and commission into disrepute, a scheme to which it is said, “ Good my lords, is it your pleasure to stand here utterly impossible the commissioners should ever fasting, and those who count lower in the church than affix their names.
you do should feast and fluster ? Let us order to us the I should have thought, if the love of what is just had dinner of the deans and canons, which is making ready not excited the commissioner bishops, that the ridicule for them in the chamber below. And this speech of of men voting such comfortable things to themselves Simon of Gloucester pleased the bishops much ; and as the prebendal patronage would have alarmed them; so they sent for the host, one William of Ypres, and but they want to sacrifice with other men's hecatombs, told him it was for the public good, and he, much fear. and to enjoy, at the same time, the character of great ing the bishops, brought them the dinner of the deans disinterestedness, and the luxury of unjust spoliation. and canons ; and so the deans and canons went away It was thought necessary to make a fund; and the without dinner, and were pelted by the men of the prebends in the gift of the bishops* were appropriated town, because they had not put meat out of the win. to that purpose. The bishops who consented to this dow like the bishops ; and when the count came to have then made a great sacrifice-true, but they have hear of it, he said it was a pleasant conceit, and that taken more out of our pockets than they have dis. the bishops were right cunning men, and had dingid the bursed from their own ; where then is the sacrifice ? canons well.? They must either give back the patronage or the mar. When I taik of sacrifices, I mean the sacrifices of the tyrdom: if they choose to be martyrs—which I hope bishop commissioners, for we are given to understand they will do let them give us back our patronage : if that the great mass of bishops were never consulted at they prefer the patronage, they must not talk of being all about these proceedings ; that they are contrary to martyrs--they cannot effect this double sensuality everything which consultations at Lambeth, previous and combine the sweet flavour of rapine with the aro. to the commission, had led them to expect ; and that matic odour of sanctity.
they are totally disapproved of by them. The volunWe are told, if you agitate these questions among tary sacrifice, then, (for it is no sacrifice if it is not yourselves, you will have the democratic Philistines voluntary,) is in the bishop commissioners only ; and, come down upon you, and sweep you all away toge besides the indemnification which they have voted to ther. Be it so; I am quite ready to be swept away themselves out of the patronage of the cathedrals, they when the time comes. Every body has his favourite will have all that never-ending patronage which is to death ; some delight apoplexy, and others prefer proceed from the working of the commission, and the marasmus. I would infinitely rather be crushed by endowments bestowed upon different livings. So much democrats, than, under the plea of the public good, be for episcopal sacrifices ! mildly and' blandly absorbed by bishops.
And who does not see the end and meaning of all I met, the other day, in an old Dutch chronicle, this? The lay commissioners, who are members of with a passage so opposite to this subject, that though the government, cannot and will not attend—the Arcbit is somewhat too light for the occasion' I cannot ab- bishops of York'and Canterbury are quiet and amiable stain from quoting it. There was a great meeting of men, fast going down in the vale of life-some of the all the clergy at Dordrecht, and the chronicler thus members of the commission are expletives--some must describes it, which I give in the language of the trans. be absent in their dioceses-the Bishop of London is lation : ' And there was great store of bishops in the passionately fond of labour, has certainly no arersion to town, in their robes goodly to behold, and all the great power, is quick of temper, great ability, thoroughly men of the state were there, and folds poured in in versant in ecclesiastical law, and always in London. boals on the Meuse, the Merve, the Rhine, and the He will become the commission, and when the Church Linge, coming from the Isle of Beverlandt, and Issel. of England is mentioned, it will only mean Charles inond, and from all quarters in the Bailiwick of Dort; James, of London, who will enjoy a greater power than Arminians and Gomarists, with the friends of John has been possessed by any churchman since the days of Barneveldt and of Hugh Grote. And before my lords Laud, and will become the Church of England here the bishops, Simon of Gloucester, who was a bishop upon earth. As for the commission itself
, there is in those parts, disputed with Vorstius, and Leoline scarcely any power which is not given to it. They the Monk, and many texts of Scripture were bandied may call for every paper in the world, and every human to and fro"; and when this was done, and many propo- creature who possesses it ; and do what they like to sitions made, and it waxed towards twelve of the one or the other. It is hopeless to contend with such a clock, my lords the bishops prepared to set them body; and most painful to think that it has been estabdown to a fair repast, in which was great store of lished under a whig government. A commission of good things and among the rest a roasted peacock, tory churchmen, established for such parposes, should having in lieu of a tail, the arms and banners of the have been tramed with the utmost jealousy, and will archbishop, which was a goodly sight to all who the most cautious circumspection of its powers, and favoured the church
and then the archbishop would with the most earnest wish for its extinction when the say, a grace, as was seemly to do, he being a very purposes of its creation were answered. The govern. holy man; but ere he had finished, a great mob of inent have done everything in their power to make it townspeople and folks from the country, who were vexatious, omnipotent, and everlasting. This immense gathered under the window, cried out, Bread! bread? power, flung into the hands of an individual, is one of for there was a great famine, and wheat had risen to the many foolish consequences which proceed from three times the ordinary price of the sleich ;* and the centralization of the bill, and the unwillingness to when they had done crying Bread ! bread! they called employ the local knowledge of the bishops in the proout No bishops !—and began to cast up stones at the cess of annexing dignified to parochial preferment, windows. Whereat my lords the bishops were in a There is a third bill concocted by ihe commissiongreat fright, and cast their dinner out of the window bishops, in which the great principle of increasing the
power of the bench has certainly not been lost sight of. The bishops have, however, secured for themselves all
a brother clergyman, falls suddenly ill in the livings which were in the separate gifts of prebenda- the country, and he begs his clerical neighbour to do ries and deans, and they have received from the crown a duty for him in the afternoon, thinking it better that very large contribution of valuable patronage; why or there should be single service in two churches, than wherefore, is known only to the unfathomable wisdom of ministers. The glory of martyrdom can be confined only at best to the bishops of the old cathedrals, for there are blished by act of Parliament in 1935. The commission
* I am speaking here of the permanent commission estalons one pint English dry measure. Ameasure in the Bailiwick of Dort, containing two gal reporting had come to an end six months before this letter
two services in one, and done in the other. The cler-| the same way an attempt was made to try delinquent gyman who accedes to this request is liable to a penalty clergymen, by a jury of clergymen, nominated by the of £5. There is an harshness and ill-nature in this-a bishop: but this was too bad, and was not endured for gross ignorance of the state of the poorer clergy-an an instant : still, it showed the same love of power hard-heartedness produced by the long, enjoyment of and the same principle of impeccability, for the bill is wealth and power, which makes it quite intolerable. I expressly confined to all suits and complaints against speak of it as it stands in the bill of last year." persons below the dignity and degree of bishops. The
If a clergyman has a living of £400 per annum, and a truth is, that there are very few men in either House population of two thousand persons, the bishop can of Parliament (ministers, or any one else,) who ever compel him to keep a curate, to whom he can allot any think of the happiness and comfort of the working salary which he may allot to any other curate; in other clergy, or bestow one thought upon guarding theni words, he may take away half the income of the clergy from the increased and increasing power of their en. man, and instantly ruin him--and this without any croaching masters. What is called taking care of the complaint from the vestry,—with every testimonial of church is taking caking care of the bishops; and all the most perfect satisfaction of the parish in the labours bills for the management of the clergy are left to the of a minister who may, perhaps, be dedicating his concoction of men who very naturally believe they whole life to their improvement. I think I remember are improving the church when they are increasing that the Bishop of London once attempted this before their own power. There are many bishops too gene. he was a commissioner, and was deteated. I had no rous, too humane, and too Christian, to oppress a poor manner of doubt that it would speedily become the clergyman; but I have seen (I am sorry to say) many law, after the commission had begun to operate. The grievous instances of partiality, rudeness, and oppres. Bishop of London is said to have declared, after this sion. I have seen clergymen treated by them with a trial, that if it was not law, it should soon be law ;t and violence and contempt which the lowest servant in the law, you will see, it will become. In fact, he can slip bishop's establishment would not have endured for a into any ecclesiastical act of Parliament anything he single moment; and if there is a helpless, friendless, pleases. There is nobody to heed, or to contradict wretched being in the community, it is a poor clergy. him-provided the power of bishops is extended by it; man in the country with a large family. If there is an no bishop is so ungenteel as to oppose the act of his object of compassion, he is one. If there is any occasion right reverend brother; and there are not many men in life where a great man should lay aside his office. who have knowledge, eloquence, or force of character and put on those kind looks, and use those kind words to stand up against the Bishop of London, and, above which raise the humble from the dust, these are the all, of industry to watch him. The ministry, and the occasions when those best parts of the Christian cha. lay lords, and the House of Commons, care nothing racter ought to be displayed. about the matter; and the cler y themselves, in a state I would instance the unlimited power which a bishop of the greatest ignorance as to what is passing in the possesses over a curate, as a very unfair degree of world, find their chains heavier and heavier, without power for any man to 'possess. Take the following knowing who or what has produced the additional dialogue which represenis a real event. incumbrance. A good, honest whig minister should Bishop. Sir, I understand yon frequent the meetings have two or three parish priests in his train, to watch of the Bible Society. the bishops' bills, and to see that they wereconstructed Curate. Yes, my lord, I do. on other principles than that bishops can do no wrong, Bishop. Sir, I tell you, plainly, if you continue to and cannot have too much pouer. The whigs do nothing do so, I shall 'silence you from preaching in my dirof this, and yet they complain that they are hated by cese. the clergy, and that in all elections the clergy are their Curate. My lord, I am very sorry to incur your in. bitterest enemies. Suppose they were to try a little dignation, but I frequent that society, upon principle, justice, a little notice, and a little protection. It would because I'think it eminently serviceable to the cause take more time than quizzing, and contempt, but it of the Gospel. might do some good.
Bishop. Sir, I do not enter into your reasons, but The bishop puts a great number of questions to his tell you plainly, if you continue to go there you shall clergy, which they are to be compelled, by this new be silenced. law of the commission, to answer, under a penalty, The young man did go, and was silenced--and as and if they do answer them, they incur, perhaps, a bishops have always a great deal of clever machinery still heavier penalty. Have you had two services in at work of testimonials and bene-decessits, and always your church all the year?'- I decline to answer.'- a lawyer at their elbow, under the name of a secreta.
Then I fine you 201.- I have only had one service.' ry, a curate excluded from one diocese is excluded _Then I fine you 2501.' In what other profession are from all. His remedy is an appeal to the archbishop men placed between this double fire of penalties, and from the bishop; his worldly goods, however, amount compelled to criminate themselves? It has been dis- to ten pounds; he never was in London; he dreads used in England, I believe, ever since the time of Laud such a tribunal as an archbishop; be thinks, perbaps, and the Star Chamber.
in time, the bishop may be softened, if he is compelled By the same bill, as it first emanated from the com- to restore him, the enmity will be immortal. It would mission, a bishop could compel a clergyman to expend be just as rational to give to a frog or a rabbit, upon three years' income upon a house in which he had re. which the physician is about to experiment, an appeal sided, perhaps, fifty years, and in which he had brought to the Zoological Society, as to give to a country cuup a large family. With great difficulty, some slight rate an appeal to the archbishop against his purple modification of this enormous power was obtained, oppressor. and it was a little improved in the amended bill.g In The errors of the bill are a public concern—the in.
justice of the bill is a private concern. Give us our This is also given up.
patronage for life. Treat the cathedrals all alike, + The Bishop of London denies that he ever said this; but with the same measure of justice. Don't divide livings the Bishop of London affects short sharp sayings, seasoned, in the patronage of present incumbents without their Iam afraid, sometimes with a little indiscretion; and these consent or do the same with all livings. If these sayings are not necessarily forgotten because he forgets them.
passed, this indulgence is extended to thirty years. Why * This attempt upon the happiness and independence of poor clergymen have been compelled for the last five years the clergy has been abandoned.
to pay off the incumbrances at the rate of one twentieth g I perceive that the Archbishop of Canterbury borrows per annum, and are now compelled to pay them off, or will, money for the improvement of his palace, and pays the when the bill passes, be so compelled, at the rate of one principal off in forty years. This is quite as soon as a debt thirtieth per annum, when the archbishop takes forty years incurred for such public purposes ought to be paid off, and to do the same thing, and has made that bargain in the the archbishop has done rightly, to take that period. In year 1831, I really cannot tell. A clergym who does not process of time I think it very likely that this indulgence reside, is forced to pay off his building debt in ten years. will be extended to country clergymen, who are compelled What bishops like best in their clergy is a droppingdown to pay off the debts for buildings (which they are compelled deadness of manner. to undertake) in twenty years; and by the new bill, not yet This has now been given to us.
points are attended to in the forthcoming bill, all com- gleton, will sit like Caius Marius on the ruins, and we plaint of unfairness and injustice will be at an end. I shall lose for ever the wisest scheme for securing a shall still think, that the commissioners have been well-educated clergy upon the most economical terins, very rash and indiscreet, that they have evinced a and for preventing that low fanaticism which is the contempt for existing institutions, and a spirit of de- greatest curse of human happiness, and the greatest struction which will be copied to the life hereafter, by enemy of true religion. We shall have all the evils of commissioners of a very different description. Bishops an establishment, and none of its good. live in high places with high people, or with little You tell me 1 shall be laughed at as a rich and people who depend upon them. They walk delicately, overgrown churchman; be it so. I have been laughlike Agag. They hear only one sort of conversation, ed at a hundred times in my life, and care little or no. and avoid bold reckless men, as a lady veils herself thing about it. If I am well provided tor now-I have from rough breezes. I am half inclined to think, had my full share of the blanks in the lottery as the sometimes, that the bishop-commissioners really think prizes. Till thirty years of age I never received a that they are finally settling the church; that the farthing from the church ; then 301. per annum for two House of Lords will be open to the bench for ages; years then nothing for ten years—ihen 500l. per an. and that many archbishops in succession will enjoy num, increased for two or three years 10 8001, till, in their fifteen thousand pounds a year in Lambeth. I my grand climacteric, I was made canon of St Paul's ; wish I could do for the bishop-commissioners what and before that period, I had built a parsonage-house his mother did for Æneas, in the last days of Troy : with farm offices for a large farm, which cost me
40001., and had reclaimed another from ruins at the Omnem quæ nunc obducta tuenti Mortales hebetat visus tibi, et humida circum
expense of 20001. A lawyer, or a physician in good Caligat, nubem eripiam.
practice, would smile at this picture of great ecclesi. Apparent diræ facies,' &c. &c.
astical wealth, and yet I am considered as a perfect
monster of ecclesiastical prosperity. It is ominous for liberty, when Sydney and Russell
I should be very sorry to give offence to the dignifi. cannot agree ; but when 'Lord John Russell in the ed ecclesiastics who are in the commission ; I hope House of Commons, said we showed no disposition to they will allow for the provocation, if I have been a make any sacrifices for the good of the church, I took little too warm in the defence of St. Paul's, which i the liberty to remind that excellent person that he have taken a solemn oath to defend. I was at school must first of all prove it to be for the good of the and college with the Archbishop of Canterbury; fiftychurch that our patronage should be taken away by three years ago he knocked me down with the chess. the bishops, and then he might find fault with us for board for check-maring him—and now he is attempt. not consenting to the sacrifice.
ing to take away my patronage. I believe these are I have little or no personal nor pecuniary interest in the only two acts of violence he ever committed in bis these things, and have made all possible exertion (as life: the interval has been one of gentleness, kind. two or three persons in the power well know) that ness, and the most amiable and high-principled court. they should not come before ihe public. I have no esy to his clergy. For the Archbishop of York, I feel son 'nor son-in-law in the church, for whom I want any kindness I have received from him: and who can see
an affectionate respect-the result of that invariable patronage. If I were young enough to survive any incumbent of St. Paul's, my own preferrent is too the Bishop of London without admiring his superior agreeably circumstanced to make it at all probable I talents-being pleased with his society, without ad. should avail myself of the opportunity. I am a sincere mitting that, upon the whole," the public is benefited advocate for church reform: but I think it very possi. by his ungovernable passion for business; and with. ble, and even very easy, to have removed all odium out receiving the constant workings of a really good from the establishment in a much less violent and heart, as an atonement for the occasional excesses of revolutionary manner, without committing or attempt.
an impetuous disposition? I am quite sure if the laing such flagrant acts of injustice, and without leaving bles had been turned, and if it had been his lot, as a behind an odious court of inquisition, which will in- canon, to fight against the encroachment of bishops, evitably fall into the hands of a single individual, and that he would have made as stout a defence as I bare will be an eternal source of vexation, jealousy, and done--the only difference is that he would have done change. I give sincere credit to the commissioners it with much greater talent. for good intentions; how can such men have intended
As for my triends the wbigs, I neither wish to of. any thing but good? And I firmly believe that they fend them nor any body else. 'I consider myself to are hardịy conscious of the extraordinary predilection be as good a whig as any amongst them. I was a they have shown for bishops in all their proceedings; whig before many of them were born and while it is like those errors in tradesmen's bills of which some of them were tories and waverers. I have althe retail arithmetician is really unconscious, but ways turned out to fight their battles, and when I saw which, somehow or another, always happen to be in no other clergyman turn out but myself—and this in his own favour. Such men as the commissioners do times before liberality was well recompensed, and not say this patronage belongs justly to the cathe. therefore in fashion, when the smallest appearance of drals, and we will take it away unjustly for ourselves;
it seemed to condemn a churchman to the grossest of but, after the manner of human nature, a thousand obloquy, and the most hopeless poverty. It may suit weak reasons prevail, which would have no effect, if the purpose of the ministers to flatter the bench ; it self-interest were not concerned; they are practising does not suit mine. I do not choose in my old age to a deception on themselves, and sincerely believe they be tossed as a prey to the bishops; I have not deserv. are doing right. When I talk of spoil and plunder, 1 ed this of my wbig friends. I know very well there do not speak of the intention, but of the effect, and can be no justice for deans and chapters, and that the the precedent.
momentary lords of the earth will receive our state. Still the commissioners are on the eve of entailing ment with derision and persiflage-the great principle an immense evil upou the country, and unfortunately, which is now called in for the government of mankind. they have gone so far, that it is necessary they should Nobody admires the general conduct of the whig ruin the cathedrals, to preserve their character for administration more than I do. They have conferred, consistency: They themselves have been frightened in their domestic policy, the most striking benefits on a great deal too much by the mob; have overlooked the country. To say that there is no risk in what they the chances in their favour produced by delay; have have done is mere nonsense—there is great risk; and. been afraid of being suspected (as tories) of not do all honest men must balance to counteract it-holding ing enough; and have allowed themselves to be hurri- back as firmly down hill as they pulled vigorously up) ed on by the constitutional impetuosity of one man, hill
. Still, great as the risk is, it was worth while to who cannot be brought to believe that wisdom often consists in leaving alone, standing still, and doing no- hours per day in the government of his diocese-in which
* I have heard that the Bishop of London employs eight thing. From the joint operation of all these causes, no part of Asia, Africa, or America is included. The world all the cathedrals of England will, in a few weeks, be is, I believe, taking one day with another, governed ir knocked about our ears. You, Mr. Archdeacon Sin-'about a third of that time.
incur it in the poor-law bill, in the tithe bill, in the Not only do these prebendaries do nothing, and are corporation bill, and in the circumscription of the Irish never seen, but the existence of the preterment, is Protestant Church. In all these matters, the whig mi- hardly known; and the abolition of the preferment, nistry, after the heat of party is over, and when Jo- therefore, would not in any degree lessen ihe tempta. seph Hume and Wilson Croker* are powdered into tion to enter into the church, while the mass of these the dust of death, will gain great and deserved fame. preferments would make an important fund for the im. In the question of the church cominission they have provement of small livings. The residentiary preben. behaved with the grossest injustice ; delighted to see diaries, on the contrary, perform all the services of this temporary delirium of archbishops and bishops, the cathedral church; their existence is known, their scarcely believing their eyes, and carefully suppress. prefermeni coveted, and to get a stall, and to be pre. ing their laughter, when they saw these eminent con- ceded by men with silver rods, is the bait which the servatives laying about them with the fury of Mr. ambitious squire is perpetually holding out to his seTyler or Mr. Straw; they bave taken the greatest cond son. What prebendary is next to come into res. care not to disturb them, and to give them no offence: idence, is as important a topic to the cathedral town, • Do as you like, my lords, with the chapters and the and ten miles around it, as what the evening or moruparochial clergy; you will find some pleasing morsels ing star may be to the astronomer. I will venture to in the ruins of the cathedrals. Keep for yourselves say, that there is not a man of good humour, sense, any thing you like-whatever is agreeable to you can. and worth, within ten miles of Worcester, who does not be unpleasant to us.' In the mean time, the old not hail the rising of Archdeacon Singleton in the hor. friends of, and the old sufferers for, liberty, do not izon as one of the most agreeable erents of the year. understand this new meanness, and are not a little as. If such sort of prefermenis are extinguished, a very tonished to find their leaders prostrate on their knees serious evil (as I have oiten said before) is done to before the lords of the church, and to receive no other the church--ihe service becomes unpopular, further answer from them than that, if they are disturbed in spoliation is dreaded, the whole system is considered their adulation, they will iininediately resign! to be altered and degrad<d, capital is withdrawn from I remain,
the church, and no one enters into the profession but My dear Sir,
the sons of farmers and little tradesmien, who would With sincere good will and respect, be footmen if they were not vicars--or figure on the
Yours, coach-box if they were not leeturing from the pul. SYDNEY SMITH. pit.
But what a practical rebuke to the commissioners, after all their plans and consultations and carvings of
cathedral preterment, to leave it integral, and unSECOND LETTER TO ARCHDEACON SINGLE. touched ! it is some comfort, however, to me, to TON.
thivk that the persons of all others to whom this pre
servation of cathedral property would give the greatMY DEAR SIR,
est pleasure, are the ecclesiastical commissioners It is a long time since you heard from me, and in themselves. "Can any one believe that the Archbishop the mean time the poor Church of England has been of Canterbury or the Bishop of Londou really wishes trembling, from the bishop who sitteth on the throne, for the confiscation of any cathedral property, or that to the curate who rideth upon the hackney horse. I they were driven to it by any thing but lear, iningled, began writing on the subject to avoid bursting from perhaps, with a little vanity of playing the part of indignation ; and, as it is not my habit to recede, I great reformers? They cannot, of course, say for will go on till the Church of England is either up or themselves what I say for thein; but of what is realdown-semianimous on its back, or vigorous on its ly passing in the ecclesiastical minds of these great legs.
personages, I have no inore doubt than I have of what Two or three persons have said to me- Why, af-passes in the mind of the prisoner when the prosecu. ter writing an entertaining and successful letter to tor recomiends and relents, and the judge says he Archdeacon Singleton, do you venture upon another, shall attend to the recoinmendation. in which you may probably fail, and be weak or stu What harm does a prebend do, a politico-econopid ?' All this I uiterly despise; I write upon these micul point of view? The alienation of the property matters not to be entertaining, but because the sub- for three lives, or twenty-one years, and the almost jects are very important, and because I have strong certainty that the tenaut has of renewing, give him opinions upon them. If what I write is liked, so much sufficient interest in the soil for all purposes of cultiva. the better; but liked or not liked, sold or not sold, tion, and a long series of elected clergymen is rather Wilson Crokered or not Wilson Crokered, I will write. more likely to produce valuable members of the comIf you ask me who excites me, I answer you it is that munity than a long series of begotten squires. Take, judge who stirs good thoughts in honest hearts--under for instance, the cathedral of Bristol, the whole estates whose warrant I impeach the wrong, and by whose of which are about equal to keeping a pack of fox. help I hope to chastise it.
hounds. If this had been in the hands of a country There are, in most cathedrals, two sorts of preben. gentleman; instead of a procentor, succentor, dean, daries—the one resident, the other non-resident. It is and canons,and sexion, you would have had huntsman, proposed by the church commission to abolish all the whipper-in, dog-feeders, and stoppers of earths; the prebendaries of the latter and many of the former old squire, full of foolish opinions, and fermented liclass, the resident prebendaries, whom I wish to quids, and a young gentleman of gloves, waistcoats,
and pantaloons: and how many generations inight it The non-resident prebendaries never come near the be before the fortuitous concourse of noodles would cathedral ; they are just like so many country gentle. produce such a man as Professor Lee, one of the premen ; the difference is, that their appointments are bendaries of Bristol, and by far the most eminent ori. elective, not hereditary. They have their houses, ental scholar in Europe? The same argument might manors, lands, and every appendage of territorial be applied to every cathedral in England. How many wealth and importance. Their value is very different. hundred coveys of squires would it take to supply as I have one, Neasdon, near Willesdon, which consists much kuowledge as is condensed in the heads of Dr. of a quarter of an acre of land, worth a few shillings Copplestone, or Mr. Taite, of St. Paul's ? and what a per annum, but animated by the burden of repairing a bridge, which sometimes costs the unfortunate pre * The church, it has been urged, do not plant-they do bendary fifty or sixty pounds. There are other non- not extend their woods; but almost all cathedrals possess resident prebendaries, however, of great value : and woods, and regularly plant a succession, so as to keep them one I belicve, which would be worth, if the years or up. A single evening of dice and hazard does not doom lives were run out, from 40,0002 to 60,0001 per annum. cut down all the timber to make the most of his estate: the
woods of ecclesiastical bodies are managed upon a fixed and * I meant no harm by the comparison, but I have made settled plan, and considering the sudden prodigalities of two bitter enemies by it.
laymen, I should not be afraid of a comparison.
strange thing it is that such a man as Lord John Rus- moderate man, and, therefore, enough to satisfy him. sell, the whig leader, should be so squirrel-minded as self. What another generation may choose to do, is to wish for a movement without object or end! Sav- another question: I am thoroughly convinced that ing there can be none, for it is merely taking from one enough has been done for the present. ecclesiastic to give it to another; public clamour, to Viscount Melbourne declared himself quite satisfied which the best men must sometimes yield, does not with the church as it is; but if the public had any require it: and so far from doing any good, it would desire to alter it, they might do as they pleased. He be a source of infinite mischief to the establishment. might have said the same thing of the monarchy, or
If you were to gather a parliament of curates on the of any other of our institutions; and there is in the hottest Sunday in the year, after all the services, ser. declaration a permissiveness and good humour which mons, burials, and baptisms of the day were over, and in public men have seldom been exceeded. Carelessto offer them such increase of salary as would be pro- ness, however, is but a poor imitation of genius; and duced by the confiscation of the cathedral property, I the formation of a wise and well-reflected plan of am convinced they would reject the measure, and pre- reform conduces more to the lasting fame of a minisfer splendid hope, and the expectation of good fortune ter than that affected contempt of duty which every in advanced life, to the trifling improvement of pover: man sees to be mere ranity, and a vanity of no very ty which such a fund could afford. Charles James, of high description. London, was a curate; the Bishop of Winchester was But, if the truth must be told, our viscount is some. a curate; almost every rose-and-shovel man has been what óf an impostor. Everything about him seems to a curate in his time. All curates hope to draw great betoken careless desolation : any one would suppose prizes.
from his manner that he was playing chuck-farthing I am surprised it does not strike the mountaineers with human happiness; that he was always on the how very much the great emoluments of the church heel of pastime; that he would giggle away the great are flung open to the lowest ranks of the community. charter, and decide by the method of tee.totum wheButchers, bakers, publicans, schoolmasters, are per. ther my lords the bishops should or should not retain petually seeing their children elevated to the mitre. their seats in the House of Lords. All this is the Let a respectable baker drive through the city from mere vanity of surprising, and making us believe that the west end of the town, and let him cast an eye on he can play with kingdoms as other meu can with the battlements of Northumberland House, has his lit. nine-pins. Instead of this lofty nebulo—this miracle tle muffin-faced son the smallest chance of getting in of moral and intellectual felicities—he is nothing more among the Percies, enjoying a share of their luxury than a sensible, honest man, who means to do his duty and splendour, and of chasing the deer with hound and to the sovereign and to the country: instead of being horn upon tha Cheviot Hills? But let him drive his the ignorant man he pretends to be, before he meets alum-steeped loaves a little farther, till he reaches St. the deputation of tallow-chandlers in the morning, he Paul's churchyard, and all his thoughts are changed sits up half the night talking with Thomas Young when he sees that beautiful fabric: it is not impossible about melting and skimming, and then, though he has that his little penny roll may be introduced into that acquired knowledge enough to work off a wbole vat of splendid oven. Young Crumpet is sent to school- prime Leicester tallow, he pretends next morning pot takes to his books--spends the best years of his life, to know the difference between a dip and a mould. In as all eminent Englishmen do, in making Latin verses the some way, when he has been employed in reading -knows that the crum in crum-pet is long, and the pet acts of Parliament, he would persuade you that he has short-goes to the University-gets a prize for an Es- been reading Cleghorn on the Beatitudes, or Pickler en say on the Dispersion of the Jews-takes orders-be- the Nine Dificult Points. Neither can Í allow to this comes a bishop's chaplain-has a young nobleman for minister (however he may be irritated by the denial) his pupil-publishes an useless classic, and a serious the extreme merit of indifference to the consequences call to the unconverted—and then goes through the of his measures. I believe him to be conscientiously Elysian transitions of prebendary, dean, prelate, and alive to the good or evil that he is doing, and that bis the long train of purple, profit, and power.
caution has more than once arrested the gigantic proIt will not do to leave only four persons in each ca. jects of the Lycurgus of the Lower House. I am thedral upon the supposition that such a number will sorry to hurt any man's feelings, and to brush away be sufficient for all the men of real merit who ought to the magnificent fabric of levity and gaiety he bas enjoy such preferment ; we ought to have a steady reared,
but I accuse our minister of honesty and diliconfidence that the men of real merit will always bear gence ; I deny that he is careless or rash: he is no a small proportion to the whole number; and that in thing more than a man of good understanding, and proportion as tha whole number is lessened, the num- good principle, disguised in the eternal and somewhat ber of men of merit provided for will be lessened also. wearisome affectation of a political roué. If it were quite certain that ninety persons would be One of the most foolish circumstances attending this selected, the most remarkable for conduct, piety, and destruction of cathedral property, is the great sacrifice learning, ninety offices might be sufficient; but oul of of the patronage of the crowd ; the crown gires up these ninety are to be taken tutors to dukes and mar. eight prebends of Westminster, two at Worcester, quises, paid in this way by the public ; bishop's chap- £1,500 per annum at St. Paul's, two prebends at Brislains, running tame about the palace ; elegant clergy. tol, and a great deal of other preferment all over the men, of small understanding, who have made them- kingdom; and this at a moment when such extraordiselves acceptable in the drawing.rooms of the mitre; nary power has been suddenly conferred upon the peoBillingsgate controversialists, who have tossed and ple, and when every atom of power and patronage gored an Unitarian. So that there remain but a few ought to be husbanded for the crown. A prebend of rewards for men of real merit-yet these rewards do Westminster for my second son would soften the Catos infinite good; and in this mixed, checkered way, hu- of Cornhill, and lull the Gracchi of the metropolitan man affairs are conducted.
boroughs. 'Lives there a man so absurd as to suppose No man at the beginning of the reform could tell to that government can be carried on without those getwhat excesses the new power conferred upon the mul- tle allurements. You may as well attempt to poultice titude would carry them; it was not safe for a clergy. off the humps of a camel's back, as to cure mankind man to appear in the streets. I bought a blue coat, of these little corruptions. and did not despair in time of looking like a layman. I am terribly alarmed by a committee of cathedrals All this is passed over. Men are returned to their now sitting in London, and planning a petition to the senses upon the subject of the church, and I utterly legislature to be heard by counsel. They will take deny that there is any public feeling whatever which such high ground, and talk a language so utterly ai calls for the destruction of the resident prebends. variance with the feelings of the age about church proLord John Russell has pruned the two luxuriant bishop-perty, that I am afraid they will do more harm than rics, and has abolished pluralities : he has made a good. In the time of Lord George Gordon's riots, the very material alteration in the state of the church : Guards said they did not care for the mob, if the gesnot enough to please Joseph Hume and the tribunes of tlemen volunteers behind would be so good as not to the people, but enough to satisfy every reasonable and hold their muskels in such a dangerous manner. I