Obrazy na stronie

scheme you have drawn for yourself; and I particularly ap. prove the design of intermixing some of the old pi&tures, for the reasons mentioned.

I have long wished for an accurate translation of Cædmon; and Mr. Dean* only is able (glad am I to hear that he is willing) to undertake that part. Honest Mr. Junius told me there were three or four words in that poem which he did not understand. This perhaps hindered him from attempting a complete translation; though I believe most of it is rendered piece-meal in the quotations he has made thence in his Saxon Dictionary. I hope your translator will oblige us with the reasons of his opinion (if he still continues in it), that a good part of Milton's Paradise was borrowed from Cædmon's. I can hardly think these two poets under the direction of the same spirit ; and I never could find, (I think his introduction to our English History rather evinces the contrary) that Oliver's Secretary was so great a master of the Saxon language as to be able to make Cædmon's Para. phrase his own. .

'Tis a misfortune we have lost so many of those parts of the Old Testament as were translated by Æltric. May not those homilies on the Maccabees (and other portions of Scripture) which are still extant, in a good measure, supply this defeét? This, in my opinion, nould be better than making up the lacunæ (as you propose) by the most ancient English translations: for such a version coming any thing near the time of the Conquest, will very well bear an entire edition by itfelf; especially after a while when the taste of such curiosities is grown more general.

You will also allow me (with submission) to enter my dis. sent to your publishing your chapters according to the divi. fion of the vulgar Latin Bibles. "Twill be a greater ease to the English reader to have them put into the modern form; and this reason will be your just apology with Foreigners.'

Specimens of the hands wherein your several manuscripts are penned, where the variety is considerable by the great difference of their age, will be undoubtedly very useful and entertaining; since you are most able to ascertain the proper times of each of 'em. A sheet of this kind is reckoned a very valuable ornament to Mr. Madox's Formulare Angli


I am, Sir,
Your very affectionate friend

To serve you,

W. CARLIOL. * Dr. Hickes, Dean of Worcester,

[ocr errors][ocr errors][ocr errors]


[ocr errors]
[ocr errors][merged small][ocr errors][merged small]
[ocr errors]

borisher Jerus vifion cand if he turbing of it'mony of Murn;

On CHRIST being born of a Virgin: vii. 14, supported by

Mat. i. 22, 23, 25. Luke i. 31, 33. TNFIDELS object to this application; firf, that the origiI nal signifies a young woman though no virgin ;-Secondly, that no other place speaks of any person to be born of a virgin; and thirdly, the Jews neither at nor after Jesus Chrift's time expected their Messiah to be thus born; fourthly, that this account went on the testimony of Mary, an inconsiderable person; that nothing of it was mentioned before Christ's death; and if he survived Joseph, the account of the angel's vision to him must be from hearsay; that neither Jesus asserts, nor do his enemies inquire, if he was born of a virgin; confequently, the miracle of his concep. tion seems to answer no valuable end ; and is not agreeable to wisdom.

Answer. First, The word does sometimes signify a young woman, though no virgin, but more properly a virgin ; as texts of the New Testament shew it to signify here. Secondo By, No other places speak of any person to be born of a vir. gin, because this was to be the glorious' peculiarity of the Mefliah. . Thirdly, Jews did not expect Messiah to be thus born, because they could not have then believed him to be the King of Israel, without knowing him also to be the Son of God, a mystery which was wisely concealed to try their faith. Afterwards their prejudices : against Jesus Christ prevented their owning him born of a virgin. Fourthly, Whether or no Joseph was dead before Christ, the testimony of Mary, and even of Joseph, about their visions cannot be

reasonably disputed; the Holy Spirit, which directed the . writers of the New Testament, having asserted the facts.

Fifthly, Christ's enemies inquired not whether he was born of a virgin, because they esteemed not this a note of the Messiah, and Christ had therefore no occasion to assert the fact, especially as he generally concealed that character.


Sixthly. It is no fair conclusion bence, that this miraculous conception answered no valuable end; for ist. It shewed the strict and full completion of this prophecy in him alone; 2ndly, It sewed allo his superior dignity to the rest of the fons of men; 3dly, It has contributed, no doubt, to convert many to Christianity after though not before Christ's death.

A strong argument for the truth of the miraculous conception arises from hence, that it was not an expected sign of the Messiah, therefore not likely to be forged, as being unneces. sary to the conviction of the Jews.

On Isaiah's prophecy of Christ's being a Light to the

Gentiles, ix. 1, 2. Supported by MatT. IV. 12, 14, 16.

TO elude the force of this prophecy, infidels represent it as not improbable that Isaiah's text here refers to Benhadad's invasion, &c. and that he comforts them that the approach. ing invasion from Affyria shall not be so bad as the former ones have been.

- Answer. What infidels affert they own only not impro. bable; and others, who are good judges, may not own even this. But if we should allow that this was the primary completion, it cannot exclude an ultimate and more exa&t one, which cannot be found except in Christ's preaching to the Gentiles in the neighbourhood of Judæa. The character of a people walking in darkness, and dwelling in the shadow of death, signifies, in propriety of speech, the Gentiles without Tevelation of God's will, and as urance of a future Jtate; and the light shining upon them, properly signifies the Gof. pel's being known to them by Christ's preaching; which Matt. allures us it was by Jesús's dwelling in Galilee of the


[ocr errors]
[ocr errors]


:... , III. On ISAIAH's prophecy of the various names of CHRIST, ix. 6, 7. fupported by LUKE I. 32, 33. ii, 11. Ephès, ii. 14.

TO evade this illustrious prophecy, infidels pretend, it may relate to Hezekiah then about eleven years old, and might be fulfilled in him with proper abatements for rhetorical and prophetical heence. But history fhews us that Hesekiah was very far from coming up to the character here given to Chrift, either in Wisdom, Goodness, or Happiness. Indeed, these extraordinary words cannot with any tolerable propriety be applied to any one but Christ. Infidels are fo


sensible of this want of agreement to Hezekiah in any tole: rable fense, that they endeavour to persuade us that the fure and everlasting mercies of David were very far from being exactly fulfilled in temporal matters. Now this observation is so far from aiding the cause of infidelity, that, on the con. trary, it destroys it; for since the promises are very ex. press, and proved to come from God who cannot deceive, the right conclusion is, that if they are not fulfilled in tem poral blessings, they will in spiritual. ...,' ; . .

The like answer is to be given to the infidel's pretence that the Rod from Jeffe's stem, &c. Isaiah xi. 1. supported by Aets xii. 23. and Rom. xv. 12. is to be meant fome temporal deliverer, whom yet they own the Jews never to have received.

: (To be continued.)

[ocr errors]

Excellent Character of Mr. WILLIAM ALLEN, from the

funeral Sermon preached at St. Martin's Outwich, in August 1686, by Dr. Richard Kidder, afterwards bishop of Bath and Wells.

T DO not intend to borrow any topicks for his praise from I his country, or descent from his quality or rank, as he was a citizen of this great city; I need not go so far out of the way. He was valuable upon greater accounts than there; he was a citizen of a better city, that of God; he was an old and faithful disciple of Jesus, a great lover of God and of righteousness. This is more than all his other properties. Our dear friend was a great lover, and a most devout worshipper of God. He did it in public, he did it in his family, he did it in his closet. He did with great reverence attend upon the public prayers, hearing of the word, and frequently

received the Holy Sacrament. He taught his children and - fervants to serve God: a true child of Abraham, the friend

of God, he kept up a sense of God in his family, and had his retirements and holy privacies. '.

He fpent great portions of his time in retirement; he was. a moft diligent inquirer after truth; he fought wisdom as silver, and searched for her as for hid treasures; nor did his


labour prove in vain, for he did understand the fear of the Lord, and find the knowledge of God: God had given him a great and clear understanding, a solid judgment and ability, and he improved his talent to a very great purpose.

He read the holy scriptures with wonderful care and dili. gence, attained to great understanding of the more abstruse parts of them; and though he had not the advantage of the learned languages to direct him, yet by acquainting himself with those who had, and by indefatigable diligence, he did arrive to so great a measure of knowledge of those things which they do contain, as would be very commendable in a well-ftudied divine. He wrote several excellent books, that need no recommendation to the world :* they are well known, and well esteemed, and the greatest clerk will have no cause to be ashamed to have them placed among the other authors with which he is furnished.

The arguments he chose were weighty, and of great use to the world: he designed to detect iniquity, enthusiasm, and superstition, which had corrupted the religion of Jesus: he persuaded men to unity and peace, and to shun all schism and faction: he endeavoured to reduce those who were gone astray, and to mind them of the divine assistance, and to per. suage them to the profoundest humility; and to comfort good men with a juft expectation of the Church's emerging from its state of sin and misery, into a better condition. Such were the arguments which this wife and good man chose. I may truly say of him, what one of the ancients says of So. crates, that he did not apply himself to trifling and less use. ful things ; “ He promoted that knowledge which was like to have the greateft efficacy upon men.”

He managed his arguments with great judgment and charity: he spake the truth in love. He did not contend for victory, but truth. His writings speak a right Christian temper all along. He was no gladiator in theology, no lover of theological contentions : he had beaten his sword into a ploughshare, and his spear into a pruning hook. The instruments he used, served to cultivate and improve, and to pare away what was superfluous, and what was hurtful; he had no skill to hurt and destroy in the mountain of the Lord.


* His works practical and controversial, were collected and published in one volume folio, in 1707, and they fully merit the encomium bestowed upon them by the learned prelate who preached the funeral sermon of Mr. Allen,

« PoprzedniaDalej »