Obrazy na stronie

Or again :

sanctity of his closing pastoral life in Borne;

but we cannot persuade ourselves that he " Those faces ! 'twas as if you had stirred ap hell gives us any true and living likeness of the

To heave its lowest dreg-fiends uppermost preacher in the Temple, the opponent of In fiery swirls of slime, -such strangled fronts, Travers, and the champion of Anglicanism. Such obdurate jaws were thrown up constantly." We gather this impression from a perusal These, and other artistic defects, detract when we turn to Fuller's Church History,

of Walton's Biography itself, and still more somewhat from the general effect of the and there catch in a broader, but still dim poem; but no one who reads it, with true and imperfect light, the picture of the rival poetic sympathy, can withhold his tribute preachers, and of the high debate they waged of admiration from a work possessing so in the Temple Sunday after Sunday,-epimany of the highest excellencies.

tomizing in their resolute opposition the stern conflict which then raged throughont the kingdom. But the chief evidence of the toning down of Walton's portrait, and of the too still and recluse light in which it is set,

is to be found in Hooker's own great work. Art. VI.-Hooker's Works. Arranged by Here we see in no common measure certain the Rev. JOHN KEBLE. 3 Vols. Oxford. elements of character, of which the Life fur

nishes little or no hint, but which in fact it THERE are few names that call up so many rather contradicts. The wonderful majesty venerable associations as that of Hooker. and repose, the calm elevation, the simpliciWalton tells us that King James never ty and dignity and grave earnestness with mentioned him but with the epithet of learn- which we are familiar in the latter, are all ed, or judicious, or reverend, or venerable Mr. here, and in even yet higher union than we Hooker; and the portrait drawn by him have been led to imagine; but there are in his well-known Life exactly answers this also a depth of human feeling, a power of description. It is a quiet and ancient pic- hearty and sometimes scornful humour, and, ture, majestic in its outlines, and grave in as naturally accompanying these, a rare its features, with an air of sad and dim repose sense and knowledge of the world which we about it. We feel in perusing it, as we feel could scarcely guess the Hooker of Walton in gazing at certain old family portraits, to have possessed. Mr. Keble has drawn that, while the truth of nature in her more attention to this,* and we have marked set 'moments has been preserved in the many traits of this broader and more genial noble and impressive presence before us, and powerful character throughout the yet there must have been also other traits, work. and some intensities of meaning in the ori- The fact probably is, that Hooker presentginal character, of which we can gather little ed in his true nature, and in his ordinary or nothing from that staid quietness and dig- personal demeanour, that sort of contrast nity of look.

which we not unfrequently see in men who Íhat this is to some extent true of Wal- are great students, and who live really more ton's portrait there cannot be any doubt. in their closets and in their books than they Beautiful and touching as it is, and so far do in the world. In the latter they are tinely expressive of the original, it does not staid and formal, and but half expressive of certainly give us the full man as he lived the life that is in them; they move feebly and laboured in those days of earnest con- and awkwardly, amid conventionalities which troversy. The contemplative aspect so uni- they are never at the trouble to understand, formly stamped upon it, is to some degree, and for which they do not care; they are although to what degree we cannot well tell, a supposed therefore to be good and simple reflection from the tranquil depths of honest souls, with little fire of natural feeling in Isaak's own soul. He paints here, as in all them, and no particular keenness and his portraits, with an unconscious touch of shrewdness of wit. But let the same men softening harmony, attaining unity of effect be contemplated with the spirit that is in at the expense of breadth and minuteness of them once fully awakened, and all the latent detail. He represents very faithfully, we features of their intellectual life drawn forth may suppose, the studious calm of the hap- and quickened into intensity of expression, py days which Hooker passed at Oxford and the aspect which they present to the within the shades of Corpus Christi College world, and which has become stamped per-perhaps also the somewhat sordid domes- haps in social anecdote, is felt to be at the ticities of "Draiton Beauchamp in Bucking. hamshire," and again the innocency and * Vol. i., Editor's Preface, pp. 2, 3.

[ocr errors]
[ocr errors]

best an imperfect representation. And so influence he was removed to Oxford about the Hooker of Walton is doubtless the the 15th year of his age. Here he was Hooker of common life, the lofty and un- placed at Corpus Christi College, under the worldly student as he moved among the care of Dr. Cole. Dr. Reynolds,* of the peasants of Drayton Beauchamp or of Borne, same College, and one of the most learned or even among the Temple students; but names in the annals of Puritanism, is said to he is not at least in full length the Hooker have been his tutor. If this be true, the fact who “writ the books of Church Polity," and is of some interest, as serving to illustrate the who, with all his sensitiveness and tender- independence of Hooker's theological trainness, and high-souled impartiality, could ing. For Reynolds' sentiments, even at impale a Puritan with the most evident this time, were decidedly Genevan, and his relish on the horns of an argumentative theological instructions, as indicated in a dilemma, or the sharp fork of a reserved but letter of his own, quoted by Keble, drew most caustic banter.*

their inspiration directly from Peter Martyr Hooker was born in the city of Exeter or and Calvin. It is not difficult, indeed, to trace its near neighbourhood, about the year the influence of such a system of instruction 1554. His native county, as Walton re- under all the catholic tendencies which marks, is conspicuous for the illustrious ultimately acquired the mastery in Hooker, names which it gave to England in the 16th and so strongly stamp his writings. His century; Bishop Jewell, Sir Francis Drake, allusions to Calvin, even when a certain and Sir Walter Raleigh, having, as well as tone of sharpness and impatience characterour author, all sprung from it. The family izes them—as in some of his notes upon the of Hooker was well-descended, although his Christian Lettert-betray the strong hold parents seem to have been poor; and Wal- which the Genevan Reformer's genius had ton says of them, in his quaint way, that exercised upon him. He could harmonize " they were not so remarkable for their ex- little with the temper of that genius, but he traction or riches, as for their virtue and

in- had felt its sway; and there is, in all that dustry, and God's blessing upon both.” His he says of the works and character of Calvin, grandfather was chief magistrate of Exeter that sort of respect which one great mind inin 1529, and his great-grandfather, besides stinctively pays to another, however widely occupying the same honourable post, repre- they may differ, and far apart as they must sented the city in Parliament, « during the ever remain from each other. This is, in several reigns of Edward IV., Richard III., point of fact, only one illustration of the and Henry VII.”We find, therefore, that, wide-spread influence which the name and though the parents of Hooker were them writings of Calvin exercised, at this time, selves unable to forward his prospects as a throughout Europe. Those most keenly scholar, he did not lack relatives to help him. A rich uncle took him by the hand, induced by the strong representation of his breathe in his life; and one can never cease to re

divine simplicity that distinguish his Apology, schoolmaster, who, from his "quick appre-gret, that his moderate views, and loving and conhension of many perplext parts of learning," ciliatory temper, were not allowed more influence was led to believe him “ to have an inward in the councils of the Queen and the Church, during blessed divine light, and, therefore, to con

the first years of her reign- although, in such a sider him to be a little wonder.” He was Ecclesiastical Polity.

case, we might never have possessed the Books of introduced by this uncle to the notice of * Dr. Reynolds was afterwards distinguished as Jewell, Bishop of Salisbury, I through whose the Puritan

leader in the Hampton Court Conference. He, too, was from the same county as Hooker and

Jewell, -as Fuller (Church Hist., Book X. p. 47, * See especially Works, vol. ii. pp. 93, 94. Fol. 1566) remarks, with amazement at the genial + Notes to Walton's Life, Keble's Ed.

productiveness of Devonshire, in that age, in men of Jewell was already old, and his course nearly learning. run. He died in 1671. Hooker appears only to + Vol. i., Notes to Walton's Life, p. 11. have had one interview with him, on his way from Vol. i. p. 133.-"Safer to discuss all the saints College, in the year 1670 or 1571. We cannot, there of heaven than M. Calvin,”-is his retort to the infore, suppose, that the relation in which they stood sinuations of the Christian Letter that he had underto one another exercised any special influence upon valued Calvin in order to exalt his own wisdom. Hooker. It is pleasing, however, to contemplate The " Christian Letter" was a letter, in the name of the connexion between these two illustrious names; certain English Protestants, addressed to Hooker, and few can read, unmoved, Walton's narrative of "requiring resolution in certain matters of doctrine, the parting blessing and gift of his staff, with which (which seems to overthrow the foundation of Christthe sainted apologist of the Church of England made ian Religion, and of the Church among us,) expressglad the heart of the young student and future lie contained in his five books of Ecclesiastical defender of that Church, as he travelled homewards. Polity." The general drift of this Letter-whose Of all the Reformera, none presents, at once, an covert mode of attack seems considerably to have intellect so exalted and a character so unstained annoyed Hooker--may be gathered from certain pas. as Jewell. The lofty wisdom, vigorous sense, and sages quoted by Mr. Keble in his Preface, pp. 1. xi.

5. He was

opposed to his discipline, owned the force his pupils, and in studious advance, first to of his theological teaching; and Whitgift the dignity of scholar, and then of Fellow himself, as the Lambeth Articles clearly of his College, the happiest years of Hooker's testify, was his willing pupil, and ready even life seem to have been spent-years of busy to outstrip his master in the dogmatic direc- seclusion and aspiring progress. tion which he had elaborately brought out daily more asiduous in his studies," says in the Institutes. Here, as in other respects, Walton; “still enriching his quiet and the great counter genius of our author showed capacious soul with the precious learning of itself, not so much by sympathy, as by the the philosophers, casuists, and schoolmen; modifying and catholic control with which it and with them, the foundation and reason met the Calvinistic views.

of all laws, both sacred and civil; and, indeed, The university life of Hooker seems to with such other learning as lay most remote have gone on evenly and happily, till it re- from the track of common studies.” Then, ceived a temporary shock from the death of too, that practical love of order, and catholic the good Bishop of Salisbury. Dr. Cole, spirit of content, so characteristic of his however, proved a true friend to him in the writings, appears to have grown up in him. circumstances ; and very soon efficient and He would often say, that God abhors conpermanent help came to him from another fusion, as contrary to his nature;” and as quarter. Sandys, at this time Bishop of often say, that “ the Scripture was not writ London, and afterwards Archbishop of York, to beget disputations and pride, and

opposiwas a great friend of Jewell's. United toge- tion to government; but moderation, charither in exile during the reign of Queen Mary, ty, and humility, obedience to authority,

_" companions at bed and board in Ger- and peace to mankind : of which virtues no many, where they did often eat the bread of man did ever repent himself upon his deathsorrow,” they maintained in more prosper- bed.” The maintainer of Church ceremoous years an intimate correspondence ; and nies, and the opponent of Puritanism, alSandys having heard from his friend of the ready speak in such language, if it be not wonderful acquirements and high character indeed a mythical reflection in the mind of of the young student, resolved to entrust to Walton from the qualities which so obvioushim the education of his son. Joined with ly and strongly mark the books of Ecclesiasyoung Edwin Sandys, then about eleven or tical Polity. twelve years of age, there was another pupil Harsher days, however, were at hand for still younger, viz., George Cranmer, whose the college recluse. After about three name has continued, from the narrative years' residence in his college as Fellow, he of Walton, closely associated with that of entered into sacred orders, and ere long was Hooker. He was the grand-nephew of the appointed to preach at St. Paul's Cross. Archbishop, and gave considerable promise Hither all the rising power and eloquence of political distinction ; but he perished at of the Church found their way in the six an early age in one of the Irish Rebellions. teenth century; and many were the associaIt was from the family of the brother of this tions that even then consecrated a spot George Cranmer, with whom he became where Latimer's homely invective, and connected by marriage, that Walton ap- Hooper's fflaming words, had rung in the pears to have derived the chief materials of ears of courtiers and people; where Jewell his biography

had uttered his famous challenge to Rome, Between these two pupils and Hooker, as from the same spot, seven years after there sprung up a sacred' friendship, exalt- the time of which we write (viz., in 1588), ed by the devotion of the pupils, and the Bancroft delivered his no less famous delove and respect of the master; “ a friend-nunciation against the Puritans. It was no ship made up of religious principles, which doubt something of a trial for Hooker to increased daily by a similitude of inclina- preach at this well-known place of resort. tions to the same recreations and studies; a In any circumstances, the change from the friendship elemented in youth, and in an uni- quiet seclusion of Corpus Christi, to the versity, free from self-ends, which the friend-éclat of a public appearance in London, ships of age usually are not.” Every one must have strongly affected one of his temremembers with a strange mixture of feel- per and character ; but, as it was, neither ings, the visit which they paid to their old weather nor friends were propitious to him tutor in Drayton Beauchamp, after his mar- on this occasion. It was customary for the riage; and in the prosecution of his great preacher from the country to stay in a parwork he constantly sought their advice,-a ticular house, called the “shunamite's tribute of respect of which both seem to house," where provision was made for his have been truly worthy.

lodging and diet for two days before, and In quiet and improving intercourse with one day after his sermon.” To this house,

Walton tells us, in one of his quaintest pas-youth,' bat too just cause to say with the holy sages, that “Mr. Hooker came so wet, so prophet, : Woe is me, that I am constrained to weary, and weather-beaten, that he was have my habitation in the tents of Kedar ! » never known to express more passion than against a friend who dissuaded him from

It is difficult to say what amount of actual footing it to London, and for finding him no truth there may be in this statement ; for easier a horse, supposing the horse trotted, we suppose all will admit that to some when he did not; and at this time, also, extent it must be received as gossip; the such a faintness and fear possessed him, that tone of it is thoroughly gossipy; and Walton he would not be persuaded two days” rest himself probably meant it as a very good and quietness, or any other means, could be story, answering fitly to the traditional chaused to make him able to preach his Sun-racter of Hooker. Its main drift is probably day's sermon; but a warm bed, and rest,

true—that Mrs. Churchman practised some and drink proper for a cold, given him by measure of guile in bringing about the marMrs. Churchman, and her diligent attend- riage. We may believe this without assentance added unto it, enabled him to perform ing to the mythical embellishments of the the office of the day, which was in or about story, which represent Hooker

in a not very the year 1581.9*

enviable light of simplicity. The fact cerA service thus inauspiciously entered tainly is, that he did marry within a few upon, was still more inauspicious in its end- years Mrs. Churchman's daughter, and that ing. His sermon was made the ground of this marriage did not contribute to his hapcertain exceptions which seem to have mark- piness. It drove him from the tranquillity ed the very opening of his career with con- of his college, and the life of contemplative troversy. But this was not the worst re- study so congenial to him, without bringing sult of the affair. Mrs. Churchman's kind- in return the compensations of affection, and ness, if Walton is to be credited, proved the solace of a happy home. Walton speaks more fatal than his own rashness, in seeming very, compassionately of the condition on " to cross a late opinion of Mr. Calvin's." which he now-entered, in contrast to his forThe plain drift of his statement is, that mer happiness" the thorny wilderness of a she laid a successful snare for entrapping busy world,” and “ those corroding cares Hooker into an alliance with her daughter. that attend a married priest and a country The whole story is a very strange one, and, parsonage.". The country parsonage was indeed, all we learn of Hooker's wife' is of Drayton Beauchamp, in Buckinghamshire, told in Isaak's own language. Being per-home and life of Hooker at this place— the same strange character. It can only be where he settled in the end of 1584.

Walton has given us a glimpse into the suaded by Mrs. Churchman

sort of companion-picture to the one we have “That he was a man of tender constitution,' already quoted, and more than matching it and that it was best for him to have a wife that in the disagreeable aspect in which it repre.. might prove a nurse to him,--such an one as sents Mrs. Churchman's daughter. About a might both prolong his life, and make it more year after, comfortable; and such an one she could and would provide for him if he thought fit to marry:' “ his two pupils, Edwin Sandys and George CranAnd he not considering that the children of this mer, took a journey to see their tutor, where they world are wiser in their generation than the child- found him with a book in his hand (it was the ren of light;' bat, like a true Nathanael, fearing Odes of Horace), he being then, like humble and no guile, because he meant none, did give her innocent Abel, tending his small allotment of such a power as Eleazar was trusted with (you sheep in a common field, which he told his pupils may read it in the book of Genesis) when he was he was forced to do then, for that his servant was sent to choose a wife for Isaac ; for even so he gone home to dine, and assist bis wife to do some trusted her to choose for bim, promising upon a necessary household business. When his servant fair summons to return to London, and accept of returned and released him, then his two pupils her choice ; and he did so in that or about the attended him unto his house, where their best enyear following. Now, the wife provided for him, tertainment, was his quiet company, which was was her daughter Joan, who brought him neither presently denied them, for. Richard was called beauty nor portion; and for her conditions, they to rock the cradle ; and the rest of their wel. were too like that wife's which is by Solomon come was so like this, that they stayed but till compared to a 'dripping house ;' so that the good the next morning, which was time enough to disman had no reason to - rejoice in the wife of his cover and pity their tutor's condition; and

they having in that time rejoiced in the remedi* Walton's Life, p. 22, Keble's Ed.

brance, and then paraphrased on many of the in† This is uncertain. It is impossible to say, from Docent recreations of their younger days, and other the vagueness of Walton's language, whether the like diversions, and thereby given him as much controversy was now or afterwards, when he became present comfort as they were able, they were Master of the Temple.

forced to leave him to the company of his wife Joan,

and seek themselves a quieter lodging for next | This he did while at dinner with the Judges, night. But at their parting from him, Mr. Cran- Readers and Benchers of the Temple : "met mer said, 'Good tutor, I am sorry your lot has with a general condolement for the death of fallen in no better ground as to your parsonage; Father Alvie,” the former master. Hooker's comfortable companion after you have weaned name, therefore, must have been very early • yourself in your restless studies.' To whom the associated with the vacancy. Two other good man 'replied, "My dear George, if saints names, however, had been already mentionhave usually a double share in the miseries of this ed, between whom, in the first instance, the life, I that am none ought not to repine at what appointment seemed to lie, those, to wit, of my wise Creator has appointed for me, but labour Mr. Walter Travers, afternoon preacher in (as indeed, I do daily) to submit mine to His will

, the Temple, and of Dr. Bond, the Queen's and possess my soul in patience and peace.'”

chaplain. The former was the favourite There is a ludicrous pathos in this picture, with the great body of Benchers, and espeand yet a certain dignity and resignation to cially with the younger and more active duty that stays the melancholy smile. Hook- portion. He was also strongly supported er is still Hooker while “ tending his small by the Lord Treasurer Burghley. The latter allotment of sheep in a common field," and was the nominee of Whitgift, who was obsti"while rocking the cradle. "" He had chosen nately opposed to Travers on account of his this life, and he gave himself to it with a pa- in Walton's life between the Lord Treasurer

Puritanism. The correspondence preserved tience calm and lofty in the very condescension to which it stooped.

and the Primate plainly shews how the matPerhaps there is that in Hooker's charac

ter stood. The former urges the claims of ter which to some extent explains his do- Travers as “ well learned, very honest, and mestic unhappiness, without making his wife well allowed and loved of the generality of quite so bad as Walton paints her, although, Dr. Bond was not likely to have much plea

that house;" he represents, moreover, that as we shall afterwards see, her character is not to be vindicated, but must rest under a sure in the appointment, “ if he came not to stain of extreme unamiability and want of the place with some applause of the comfeeling. While we must claim for him more pany.” The Primate replies, that Travers knowledge of the world, and more enjoyment was well known to him—that he had formerly of life than these descriptions lead us to sus.

elected him Fellow of Trinity College, after pect, it is yet admitted that there is a certain he had been rejected by Dr. Beaumont for coldness in his majesty-a certain stateliness his "intolerable stomach,” and that he had of temper about him-not easily quickened then such experience of him, that he was and running over into the ordinary channels forced“ by due punishment so to weary him, of affection. In his case, as in Milton's, we

that he was fain to travel, and depart from can easily imagine how a high dignity and the College to Geneva." The result was, reserve of disposition prevented his moving that both names were withdrawn, and the freely amid the more usual cares and sweet place given to Hooker, to whom the Primate accompaniments of family life. The very

probably transferred his support, the Queen grandeur and depth of the natures of both having declined to part with her chaplain. made them more difficult to stir into unison Hooker, it is said, by no means coveted the influences, they could only have been drawn better place in the country, where he could with any others. Untouched by ordinary appointment; he rather accepted than desired

had forth by the power of some lofty passion, which, meeting neither in the world of life, spend his days in quietness, such a place as came to them as inspirations from the great years

' experience of the Temple.*

he earnestly besought of Whitgift after some world of mind.

. The visit of Hooker's pupils, if not pro- leaves us to înfer otherwise, the troubles

He probably foresaw, though Walton ductive at the time of much happiness, was not without important consequences. The

before him. He was connected through representations made by young Sandys to marriage with Travers; he must have known his father, of the uncomfortable position of that the latter was the popular favourite for his old tutor, induced the Archbishop to

the place to which he himself had been recommend him for the mastership of the appointed; nor could he have been ignorant Temple, which had then become vacant. activity with which he had maintained them;

of his puritanical opinions, and the zeal and

and, moreover, that the great body of the * This incident recalls to Walton's biographer (Gouch), a similar domestic feature in the life or congregation strongly sympathized in those Melanchthon, who was seen by one of his friends with one hand rocking the cradle of his child, with * See seq., p. 480, Walton puts the same lanthe other holding a book.

guage into his mouth on both occasions.

« PoprzedniaDalej »