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thy body be reduced to ashes; and thus thou shalt end thy days, to give an example to others who would do the like. We command you, our Lieutenant, to cause our present sentence to be put in execution.'
This adjudication was carried into effect at Geneva, ^7 October 1553, 'to the encouragement of catholic cruelty, to the scandal of tbe reformation, to the offence of all just men, and to the everlasting disgrace of those ecclesiastical tyrants, who were the chief instruments of such a wild and barbarous deed.' Mr. Wright adds that 'Servetus ended his days, amidst the most excruciating sufferings, with firmness and composure, without speaking, or giving the least sign that he reprnted publishing the book for which he suffcrtd, or that he retracted the opinions he had avowed.'
It having been the professed object of the present work to discountenance and reprobate intolerance, this design .would, we apprehend, have been better consulted, if the author had shewn himself a less violent stickler for the tenets which he ascribes to the object of his narrative. Though Servetus were regarded as a heretic, which he certainly would be by the major part of the christian world, if he held the opinions which are represented by his biographer as having been professed by him, still the injustice done to him was not less fl-igraut, and the conduct of his enemies not less heinous. 'The intemperate zeal, however, which the author manifests in favour of the supposed creed of Servetus, will occasion his report to be perused with suspicion; and the discerning reader will recognize in him rather the panizan of unitarunism than the friend of universal toleration. It was not necessary to canonize Servetus, nor to set him up as an apostle, in order to expose to destestation those who shed his innocent bkort. If his enemies applied the harshest epithets to him, and spoke of him in terms the most opprobrious, it must be owned that in this respect the heretical martyr rather exceeded than MI short of their violence. The language which he sometimes used would in these days be considered a* cle-.ir!y indicating insanity; and though, in judging of it, we ought doubtless ro recollect the times, certainly we are in justice required to observe the same rule when we pass judgment on his celebrated persecutor. We object not to the panegyric in which Mr. Wright indulges, with respect to the modern disciples of the supposed tenets of the Spanish physician ; we admit that they are highly respectable persons: but we should be sorry to think that superior wisdom, piety, and worth, were confined to this little circle. If we do not approve moroseness and bigotry, neither do we admire pride and conceit; if we sanction iiot anathemas, neither do
T 4 * we we join in sneers; and if we applaud liberality of sentiment, we also respect christian humility. We ardently wish that sectaries would place no stress on their miserable distinctions, but rest their claims to preference on the practice of virtue; that they would regard none as heretics except the intolerant, and that bigotry' should be deemed the only schism!
The famous passage in the Christianismi Restitutio of Severus, In which the circulation of the blood is mentioned, is inserted in this volume from Dr. Douglas's Bibliographic Anatomic* Specimen. Referring to if, Dr. Douglas says,
* This is that famous passage which ia so much taken notice off on account of the circulation of the blood. There are indeed several things here that are remarkable, viz. that the blood, in a great stream, passes through a very large and wide duct, from the right ventricle of the heart, into the lungs; that there the blood is purified ; and from thence it is driven, by the pulmonary vein, into the left ventricle of the heart; that there is an immediate communication between the arteries and the veins, by anastomosis; that the most pure part of the blood, refined in the lungs, enters the arteries, and from the arteries into the veins, &c. This shews that Servetus was a great observer of nature, and no doubt would have improved those notions and carried them much further had he not been prevented by an untimely death.'
We should have been unjust to this interesting victim of unrelenting bigotry, had we passed over a testimony which is so unexceptionable, and which redounds so much to his honour.
Art. VIII. Christian Politics. By Ely Dates, Esq. 8vo. pp. 44;. 9s. Boards. Longman and Co.
TJisTORY and recent experience abound in proofs of the difficulty which attends efforts to attain and realize the blessings of liberty. This consideration greatly enhances the obligation of those who live under its benign influence to value and cherish it, to protect it with the utmost vigilance and extreme jealousy against all inroads, and to defend the sacred treasure with incessant anxious care and unshaken firrftness. It is not from foes alone that liberty has cause for apprehension ; since dangers assail her on the side 6f false and pretended, of well meaning but ignorant and injudicious friends. To guard against these latter assaults appears to be the laudable object of the respectable volume before us: in which the authoi exposes exaggerated notions of liberty, points out the fallacy of crude theories of government, and examines the nature and state of man, in order to shew the necessary limits • • that.
that must bound the good winch the best constituted civil society can administer. It seems to be his design to induce sound and'practical notions on this subject, in the room of the visionary expectations which artful men^have too often encouraged in order to serve their own purposes, and by which the simple and honest have been too frequently inveigled. It is true that, under this sort of cover, the causr of despotism and slavery has been sometimes pleaded: but all reaJers will ac, quit the ingenuous author before us of every thing that borders on such an intention. If we deem the danger to liberty from quarters evidently hostile to be the one that is more imminent at present, we are far from thinking that many of its well-wishers are entirely free from extravagant views of the subject, which it would be of the greatest benefit to correct.
While Mr. Bates is anxious to warn us against extremes in regard to liberty, we do not perceive that lie can be justly charged with failing to appreciate its blessings. The pjssige which we here insert in our opinion sufficiently vindicates him, and shews that his views of this fitst of social blessings are worthy and liberal:
* It is in those states whose animating principle 5s liberty, that we must look for a just exercise of reason, or a spirit of free inquiry. Under despotic governments, the mind lies abject and depressed with the body, without any ardour for rational investigation, which might draw down the vengeance of a power founded in ignorance and injustice; and this general depression of reason goes still further to strengthen the hands of despotism. Thus civil and intellectual slaverygenerate and increase one another; and the same is true of liberty. JLet the government be free, and it will no less elevate ,nnd liberaliie the public understanding, than it will sink and degrade it, when despotic. On the other hand, let the public mind be dignified and expanded with knowledge, and it will liberalize the government; as it will be sure to invite oppression and tyranny, when contracted and debased by ignorance.
'Hence i; may appear, how much the virtue and happiness of society is connected with the exercise of a free and expansive, yet solid understanding; or, in other words, with a just liberty of thinking ; a liberty that should carefully be distinguished from the rovlngs of a wild and vigorous imagination, which delights itself with framing new" systems of religion or government, and with a perverse opposition to whatever is already established; and often proves equally mischievous to the public and the individual.
• Let him therefore who is ambitious of breaking the shackles of credulity and prejudice, and who means, at the same tune, to be of any real service to the world »r to himself, learn to prefer plain and practical truth to the most plausible theories; and secondly, before fic goes in quest of new opinions, let him carefully examine the old, and remember to propose his speculations with a due regard to tt.«
authority; authority of others; since, without this modesty and precaution, he may come to be profane or heretical in religion, and seditious in politics; and tp need that control from his superiors, which he is unwilling to exercise upon himself. •
• Indeed to restrain the excesses of a spirit of inquiry, without de« priving society in some measure of its u»e, is, I suppose, beyond the reach of political wisdom. All human advantages must be taken as
• they exist, entangled with evils which it is impossible entirely to separate; if wc can get rid of the more importunate, it is all we can reasonably expect. Wise and moderate governments will therefore lean to the side of discussion, as generally tending to their own improvement, and the common good of mankind; and will think it sufficient if they can prevent its more material inconveniences.'
This treatise is divided into four parts, subdivided into sections, which discuss civil government in its influence on virtue and happiness, chiefly from the relation which k bears to liberty and property; the importance of religion, both to society and the individual, with reflections on religious establishments, and toleration; the conduct of a good citizen, particularly under any moderate government; and the way to live happily under all governments, and in ail situations, on the foundation of peace of conscience and holy and well regulated affections.
While we approve many of the political lessons which Mr. Bates inculcates, tlie school of political economy, from which we derive our maxims, will not admit of our acquiescing in the sumptuary regulations which he proposes. Neither can we applaud the conduct of the author in mixing his particular notions of theology with political matters, though we must highly commend the liberal and tolerant maxims to which he gives his sanction. He appears strongly to feel the abuses which attend religious estab'ishments, and the difficulty of preventing them from pressing hard on the rights of private judgment: but he is of opinion that, without an establishment, many parts of an empire would have no religious public service kept up; and he seems on the whole to favour the system of an establishment with a perfect toleration. His observations on these subjects must be regarded as highly worthy of attention, when we reflect on the disposition to retrograde in these matters, which has of late unhappily shewn itself. Mr. Bates is not carried away by this stream. Though he is the zealous advocate of piety and sanctity, he manfully asserts the rights of , conscience, and exposes the injustice and ill effects of civil disqualifications founded on religious opinions.
• Under a general toleration without an establishment, there is evident danger, lest some parts of a country should be left without anypublic administration of religion at all. If wc look around us in our own land, where such an administration is legally provided, we find numbers, especially in the upper ranks of life, who statedly withdraw themselves from it, and many others who attend with much indifference; so that, were no auch provision made, we have little reason to expect, that either the one or the other would supply the deficiency j and those who were of a better mind, would probably, at least in some , places, be too few and inconsiderable to provide for themselves. Hence, in such circumstances, the public wor.hip of God would be in danger of a total extinction, without the aid of the magistrate, who, by dividing the country into commodious districts, and planting in each a clerical teacher, affords to all its inha'.ltantb the means of religious instruction. And should it be said, to diminish this advantage, that the magistrate's religion may possibly be etroneous j yet, still, let it be temembered, that there is scarce any religion which is not better than none, as there is scarce any which does not inculcate some important principles of moral duty. Besides, tinder a complete toleration, which is here supposed, if the people be not satisfied with the religion established, they ait left to their own liberty ; the magistrate comes not to dictate, but to assist; he sayj, I have provided for you the best I can ; if you can (Jo better for yourselves, 1 am glad of it.
'One apparent advantage of the sci.cme now Mated, and in which it is litrle inferior to that of a toleration without art establishment, is, that it unites all the citizens in a zealous attachment to their country, where they all have a common concern, and where every invidious distinction being set aside, each is permitted to aspire alter any privilege or office, to which his virtues or talents may recommend or entitle him. Thu3 a nation is bound together by a regard to individual honour and interest, the strongest of all human ties; their resources are con olidated : they are better able to resist foreign violence, or to quell internal disturbance; and to advance still further their common security and welfare.'
If Mr. B. admits that some danger may arise to the Church from a complete toleration of DUsrnters, he afterward obviates it, and shews that such complete toleration is more adapted to the interest of a snte than one which is partial.
The following admirable paragraph manifests the author's turn of thinking on a subject of grcJt interest:
* From what has been advanced in this and the two preceding sections, I think it sufficiently appears, that whatever may be the case of a toleration without an establishment, an establishment without a toleration, ii neither consistent with the true interest of religion, nor with the peace of society; that fot the magistrate to interfere at all in religious matters is a point of extreme delicacy; and that when he aoes interfere, it should be his first care to do no harm, either by an unnecessary abridgment of the liberties of any class of citizens; by his patronage of a false religion ; or by his endeavours to promote the true one in ways that are not agreeable to its spirit, and 1 hat might endanger the temporal as well as spiritual welfare of the people. We have already noted some of those furious wars that have been