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“What has just now been said must be read with a secondary meaning as an apology for Theism made to those more advanced thinkers who are apt to look back upon the intermediate stages of skepticism with little less impatience than they do upon Christians. Its primary intention as a rejoinder to certain controversialists, whose best argument is only an uncandid claim of consinship in superstition, is far less important, for it makes nothing whatever in favor of the reception of elaborate dogmata to show that the little which is received by the more cautious is proportionately as unwarranted as the much that is swallowed by the most reckless; but it is a matter of keen import that a sympathy and a solidarity should be established between those who have started on the right road and those who feel that they have arrived at its goal. Men of extreme (and by extreme are here meant finished) convictions are somewhat too apt to refuse fellowship or countenance to what is inchoate or imperfect. They are prone to mistake incompleteness for compromise. They confound temporary exhaustion with some cause or other fundamentally unsatisfactory. This is to be uncharitable, hasty, brusque, exclusive; to be all or any of which is to be unwise. Some minds move more slowly over difficulties, some hearts pant longer before dangers, than do others. The retrospect of their own struggles might surely teach the most victorious that the campaign of selfemancipation is seldom won in a single battle, and that there is a tendency, if not a necessity, oftentimes to bivouac upon the field. Nine out of ten out of the multiplicity of half-way creeds are due not to any positive mental divergencies, but to variations in courage or in mental speed. A failure in the bravest and strongest to recognize this has done much to impede the religious progress of English society. They have held themselves aloof in an isolation contemptuous, uncaring, surly. They have refused to go out into the highways and hedges and compel men to come in. The invitations of the orthodox of every shade toward retrogression have been far more sedulously and generously extended, and the consequence is that thousands who might once have been made guests at the feasts of reason and freedom now permanently sup nonsense with the fettered and the mean."
Bishop Colenso has opened his battery upon the “Speaker's
Commentary” on the Pentateuch in a pamphlet of one hundred and forty-seven pages, attacking the introductions and the notes on Genesis. The following eulogy on his “ The Pentateuch and the Book of Joshua Considered " in this bitter infidel Quarterly illustrates how little a successional episcopacy may be a security for soundness of faith.
“ Dr. Colenso, after prosecuting his researches into the Pentateuch with an industry and perseverance worthy of all praise, has almost completed them in a sixth volume, which appears to us the most important of the series. It addresses itself to scholars rather than general readers, though the latter may easily follow its arguments and perhaps understand their force. The bishop's intellect has lost none of its vigor or lucidity, if we may judge from the bulky work before us. Rather has it acquired strength and breadth. His Hebrew learning is of a superior order, placing him on a height immeasurably above that of his opponents or detractors. He deals with the ancient documents after the fashion of a ripe German scholar, so that none can fairly deny his critical ability. The volume takes its place at once beside the most important works on the Pentateuch, and will command the attentive perusal of all who are interested in the criticism of the Hebrew Scriptures. Fortunately for the bishop's scholarly reputation, he has followed up his first part by a succession of others, each showing a development of intellectual power and critical sagacity which casts his enemies into the shade of ignorance. The chief point here investigated is the age of the Levitical legislation. In doing this the learned author travels over a field embracing from Exodus to Joshua inclusive, carefully separating the contents of the books, and assigning them to certain dates or authors. In all cases objections are answered and traditionary views set aside. Speaking generally, we may say the most of Leviticus, with large portions of Numbers and Exodus, are attributed to the Captivity or after. The object is to bring down the priestly legislation in particular to a late age. The bishop follows in the wake of Graf and Kuenen, who endeavor to prove the same thing. Those who will have the patience to go through the volume with a care proportionate to its importance will be amply rewarded, for there is a richness of materials which enlarges the vision, suggests inquiry, and
stimulates thought. We have not space even for a summary of the contents, but must refer to the preface for it. How far it is possible to agree with the bishop could not be explained without the discussion of numerous details unsuited to a general notice. While looking upon the goodly volume as an addition and an ornament to the best literature of the Pentateuch, commending its general spirit, recognizing the masterly exegesis, the thorough acquaintance of the topics examined, and the fair tone in which every result is enunciated, we hesitate to accept the late date of all, or even the greater part, of the institutions here assigned to the Babylonian captivity and after."
EDINBURGH REVIEW, April, 1872. (New York: Reprint-Leonard Scott, 140
Fulton-street.)-1. Burn's Rome and the Campagna. 2. The Royal Institution. 3. Guizot's Memoir of the late Duke de Broglie. 4. Mr. Miall on Disestablishment. 5. Letters and Discoveries of Sir Charles Bell. 6. Oceanic Circulation. 7. The Works of John Hookham Frere. 8. The Life and Times of Henry Lord Brougham. 9. The Claims of the United States. The following extract from Article IX shows how our English cousins put their own Case, and suggests additional cause of doubt whether Mr. Sumner is the beau ideal of a moderate statesman:
“Among the thoughts suggested to us by the perasal of the Case for the United States (published by Bentley, and professing to be a fac-simile of the official copy) the most prominent was this: that if the conditions under which neutrality is to be maintained or suffered be those expounded in this singular volume it is not the interest of a nation to observe neutrality. According to what we read in this 'Case' we had the fate of the American Civil War in our hands; for if a few inconsiderable privateers had power, by their marauding excursions, to protract the war for two years, what might not have been done if we had put forth our maritime strength ? Had we even declined to recognize the very questionable blockade of the Southern ports, the North, by the confession of this pleading, must have been greatly enfeebled; and if we had joined with France, and intervened to terminate the struggle in November, 1862, there would have been an end, at all events, of 'Alabama' claims. Nor were we without solid interests at stake which urged us in that direction. To say nothing of the internecine and hideous aspect of the war
itself, fearful beyond any record of civil slaughter, our great manufacturing staple was withdrawn from us, our manufacturing population were exposed to the cruelest hardships, and our manufacturers to ruin, as the price of our fidelity to our neutral obligations. We were faithful, however, although the American Case makes it doubtful if we had any motive or interest to be so. Our operatives bore their privations with a magnanimity without example, we believe, in nentral nations; and we resisted the solicitations of the Emperor of the French to alter our policy, even althongh it brought daily injury to ourselves. And now that all is done, and the North, not without the aid of German recruits and British inunitions of war, has subjugated the South, how are we rewarded ? America claims from us the whole expense of the war incurred after the battle of Gettysburgh; the whole expense of Grant's last campaign and Lee's masterly defense; of Sherman's march through Georgia; of the weary, almost hopeless, waiting of the Northern armies before Richmond, up to the longdeferred but final surrender. We are to pay for all this. Should we not have been better off as belligerents ? for according to these demands the belligerent is to come off free, and the nentral to pay all.
“Nor may we forget what the battle of Gettysburgh was. It was the cast of a die by the South for final victory. Up to that time so utterly had the North failed, with all the enormous advantages which their blockade and their command of the sea gave them, to subdue the South, that they had retired, stunned and bewildered, after Stonewall Jackson's last battle; and Lee felt himself strong enough to become the aggressor, and carry the war into the States of the North. He almost succeeded. The battle of Gettysburgh hung long in suspense; and had the scale turned the other way the ultimate event might not, perhaps, have been altered, but would certainly have been much longer deferred. treated to the territory of the South almost unmolested, presenting to the North the same solid front as that against which three of their armies had before dashed themselves in vain. Yet the truth of history tells us, as we find it written in the American Case, that the war from this date was only kept alive by the roving freebooters, the 'Ala
bama,' the 'Florida,' and the 'Shenandoah,' and that if these had been captured or sunk the South would instantly have collapsed.
“ Had we become belligerents it would certainly, at this rate, have been better for our purse. Would it have been worse for the good feeling which ought to prevail between the two countries ? Not if we are to believe the American Case. Our neutrality, it seems, has only left behind feelings as bitter and exasperation as intense as war itself could have produced. Our very neutrality, we are told, was as hostile and as offensive as war could have been; our sayings and our doings, official and non-official, are now paraded in order to give expression to what, according to the Case, is the deliberate sense of the nation. Even the Washington Treaty has done nothing to moderate the poignancy of American resentment, which is faithfully depicted, as we are asked to believe, in this remarkable State paper.
“We may say, once for all, that we regret no part of our past impartiality; but this Case no more represents either the facts of history, or genuine American opinion, than the monstrous heads and distorted limbs we see in a pantomime represent the human figure. The draughtsmen of the Case strive to produce their effects, as the scenic artist does, by grotesque exaggeration; and the result has been, for the present at least, to obstruct if not to destroy a course of amicable and sensible adjustment in which, if some things were surrendered which strict adherence to theory might have maintained, the English nation were ready to recognize, with good humor and friendliness, a mutual desire for a practical closing of accounts. But this demand has gone beyond all limits of patience, and is placed on grounds which leave no room for its exercise."— Pp. 280, 281.
LONDON QUARTERLY REVIEW, April, 1872. (New York: Reprint-Leonard
Scott, 140 Fulton-street.)-1. The State of English Architecture. 2. Thomas Carlyle. 3. Trade with China. 4. Masson's Life of Milton. 5. Modern Skepticism—The Duke of Somerset. 6. The British Parliament; its History and Eloquence. 7. Diaries of a Diplomatist. 8. Education, Secularism, and Non
conformity. 9. Concession to the United States. The Fifth Article is a very just castigation of the Duke of Somerset's deistical pamphlet noticed in our Book Table. The following sarcasms on the “ modern thought” cant admirably hit the point: