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cularly in its Calvinistic form. Accordingly in all “ countries, divided in point of religion (remarkably in “ France and Germany), the Catholics have generally “ ranged themselves on the side of absolute
and o the Protestants on that of freedom.” That the nature of the Protestant tenets, and discipline is, in general, more favourable to civil liberty than those of the Catholics is readily acknowledged. But the political tenets of these two parties, and the side, on which they have respectively ranged themselves, have generally been the effect of the peculiar circumstances, in which they have been placed, rather than the result of the religious principles they had adopted. The Protestants of England, as we have shewn before in this Section, ranged themselves, at the Reformation, on the side of absolute power'; and Mr. Rose is peculiarly unfortunate in citing France as an example; for when was that country most divided in point of religion?' at the time of the league. And what were the respective tenets of the two sects on the subject of Government at that time? The Protestants held the indefeasible right of the King to absolute power, and the Duke of Guise, or at least his adherents, asserted the right of the nation to choose a King, the necessity of a government by the estates of the realm, and the original right of the people, subject indeed to the true religion and the Pope, as God's Vicegerent on earth, to regulate their government. And, before, and after the murder of Henry the Third of France, SECTION a great number of pamphlets and essays were published by Jesuits and other Catholics of the most republican tendency, and of the most violent nature, against both the principle and practice of kingly power*. The truth is, that men are governed by their passions, more than by their reason, and in their zeal for their respective religions, both Catholics and Protestants forgot the rational principles of liberty, and adopted those, which they found most useful for the immediate support of their religious tenets. It happened that the sovereign princes of Europe were Catholics, and most of them continued to be so after the Reformation, their subjects, therefore, after they had become Protestants, endeavoured to justify their separation from the universal church, and maintain themselves in it by an appeal from the divine right derived from the Pope, to the human rights of the people ; the general creed
* The President Henault mentions as made in 1587, what he calls * Arreté etrange de la Sorbonne; que l'on ponvoit oter le gouvernement “ aur princes que l'on ne trouvoit pas tels qu'ils falloit, comme l'adminis« tration au tuteur, qu'on cooit pour suspect.” Abregé Chronologique, ii. p. 573. A Decree of the Protestant University of Oxford, made nearly 100 years afterwards, in 1683, affords a striking contrast; the third proposition, declared to be false, 'seditious, and impious, was that, “ if lawful governors become tyrants, or govern otherwise than by the 6 laws of God and man, they ought to do, they forfeit the right they “ had unto their government.”
of the Protestants, from this circumstance, became
No proof James was guided by religious zeal. Rose, p. 117.
The next argument offered by Mr. Rose is, that " in
tracing the actions of James from his accession “ downwards, we find numerous instances of his adopt
ing measures, to which he could be prompted only
by his religious bigotry, because they were unfa“ vourable to his arbitrary power.” Here Mr. Rose is strong in assertion, but weak in proof, for the only specific evidence produced to support this general allegation arises from his conduct in the last illness of his brother, when be expressed great anxiety, that he should breathe his last, in the bosom of the Catholic Church, accompanied
with the expression, that he would hazard everything, rather than not do his duty upon that occasion. Mr. Rose, however, has further favoured us with two general observations,--first, that from the commencement of his reign, all his proceedings were calculated for paving the way for the sovereign Pontiff to readmit the English nation into the only true church, which marked unequivocally his fixed and determined purpose. Mr. Rose's authority however great, will not alone command submission to his opinion in this
Ib. p. 119.
respect, and it may still be doubted that James had such fixed and determined purpose, or that all his proceedings were directed to that end, notwithstanding a long section of his book has been exhausted in the fruitless, attempt, to prove it.—Secondly, that he was so bigoted to his religion, that in all his difficulties he never conciliated his opponents, or retracted his opinions, and uniformly spoke of his obligation of conscience, as paramount to every object of in
terest or ambition, or of any compliance to obtain 6. them.” That he was: bigoted in a high degree to his religion, that he did not conciliate his opponents or retract his opinions, we may readily admit, but that he uniformly spoke of his obligation of conscience being paramount to every object of interest, or ambition, remains to be proved. It has not yet been shewn, that he was less zealous in pursuit of arbitrary power, than attentive to the obligations of conscience; or that he did not occasionally sacrifice, the interests of his religion on the altar of ambition.
love of power. Fox, App. p. lv.
The next paragraph seems to have been introduced Lewis's zeal for for the purpose of destroying the whole effect of Mr. vient to his Rose's previous reasoning, for it shews that an inor- Rose, p. 190. dinate love of power may be concealed under the mask of zeal for religion, and that the professions of Kings are not always to be trusted. It is remarked, that “ Lewis the Fourteenth, whose ambition was
“ about to desolate a great part of Europe, whose " intolerance excited him to reduce to want and mi
sery a million of his subjects, was proud of what “ he thought the spirit, as well as the title of the “ most Christian King.” Mr. Rose then observes, that he reproved Barillon's suggestion that danger might attend James's going publicly to mass, when it was necessary for “ the ease of his conscience," and expressed his zeal for the orthodoxy of the church, which Mr. Rose incorrectly states he hoped James would establish*, and keep free from Jansenism, and adds the same
* The Letter begins by observing that there is great likelihood that the King of England, who now makes so public a profession of the Catholic religion, will soon ask from the Pope some bishops of that communion, and as it cannot he doubted that his Holiness will select them from the Clergy of England, among whom Lewis had learnt there were some who had embraced the doctrine of Jansenism, he ordered Barillon to caution James upon the subject. In this passage Lewis makes no allusion to the establishment of the Catholic Church, as is supposed in the text, but assumes, that as the King makes public profession of its tenets, he will be desirous that the Pope should send him some bishops; and what proves that the Protestant establishment was not to be overthrown, Lewis takes for granted that the Pope will select them from its clergy. A toleration only for the Catholics was the wish of Lewis; the expectation of bishops being appointed does not imply that he had any idea of an establishment for them. This is farther explained by the transactions of the next year, when four Catholic bishops were publicly consecrated in the royal chapel, and with the titles of Vicars Apostolic, sent down into their respective districts to exercise the episcopal functions; and the Catholics of England have ever since had their bishops, even when their religion was not tolerated.