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mised to abstain from all further discussion of the points in controversy; he insisted that the same restraint should be imposed upon those injudicious brawlers, whose silence would have been more beneficial to the See than their importunate advocacy; and he engaged to retract any articles which should be pronounced erroneous by a tribunal of German bishops. It was not indeed likely that these conditions would be ever acted on. Luther did not himself expect that result,* nor would the spirit of the Reformation have been extinguished, even if his dangerous counsel had been followed. The affair had proceeded too far. The remedy would have come too late. The sense of deception and injury and insult was too keen and general among the German people. The whole nation was awakened, and the Roman system was in such open contrast with Christ's gospel that, among men who read the gospel and believed in Christ, it could not possibly long subsist, such as it then subsisted. Some great change was morally necessary. But by seasonable concession on the part of Rome it might have been retarded; it might even have been so conducted and modified as to become the means of strength and regeneration to the church: still some revolution of some description was inevitable. But had this not been so, had there been any expedient by which the peace of the church, such as it then was, could have been permanently restoredany device by which the See could have hoped to preserve without serious diminution all its prerogatives and abuses-it was that which was suggested by Luther. His
* Letter to Christopher Scheurl, Jan. 13, 1519. "Cum Carolo amicissime conveni; primum ut hæc res omnino sileatur utrimque; deinde, mandato summi pontificis, aliquis Germaniæ episcopus articulos erroneos mihi designet, quos revocem. Sed, nisi Deus inter sit, nihil fiet -præsertim si me decretali illa nova cœperint urgere, quam nondum vidi, &c. . .
arguments on this matter were those, which the most judicious zeal for the existing system and the clearest view of its actual position would have dictated; had it been possible to maintain that position, the means were those which he recommended.
When he looked back at the close of life on this negotiation, with all the results before his eyes, the following were the reflections which he expressed :*
"It was usual to consider both Miltitz and his scheme as altogether futile. But in my opinion, if the Archbishop of Mayence, in the very beginning, when he was warned by me-nay, if the Pope, before he condemned me unheard and stormed against me with his bullshad taken that counsel which Miltitz took, though somewhat late, and had in a moment repressed the excesses of Tetzel, the affair would not have had such important consequences. The whole fault rests with the Archbishop, whose wisdom and craft deceived him when he thought to put down my doctrine, and so save the money which his indulgences were bringing him." It might seem presumptuous even to express assent to the truth of these remarks, yet they entirely confirm what has been just said in respect to the policy of the treaty between Luther and Miltitz.
But Luther was not destined to the obscurity to which his own counsels were calculated to consign him. The greatness which he seemed desirous to cast away was
*In the Preface to his Latin works.
+ "Futilis habebatur Carolus et futile ejus consilium. Sed meo judicio si Moguntinus a principio, cum a me admoneretur, denique si papa, antequam me non auditum damnaret et bullis suis sæviret, hoc cepissent consilium quod Carolus cepit licet sero, non evasisset res in tantum tumultum. Sola culpa est Moguntini, cujus sapientia et astutia eum fefellit, qua voluit meam doctrinam compescere, et suam pecuniam his indulgentiis quæsitam esse salvam."
thrust upon him by the indiscretion of his opponents. The vantage-ground which he offered to relinquish he was compelled by their fatuous perversity to maintain and fortify. It is thus that Providence, for the instruction and abasement of Its creatures, counteracts the infirmity of one by the rashness of another, and in the faltering of our virtues employs even our follies and our vices for the accomplishment of Its eternal purposes.
The Legate Gaetan was then at Coblentz. To him, as the local representative of the Pope, Miltitz was immediately responsible for the success of his negotiation, and to him he made his report accordingly. The Archbishop of Treves, who had been named with Luther's consent among the proposed judges, wrote to the Elector to express his readiness to undertake the office. But at the same time he appointed Coblentz as the place of judgment, and requested that Luther might be sent thither. Luther of course objected: a trial at Coblentz, under the very eyes of the Legate, promised no greater impartiality than the scene already enacted at Augsburg. Besides, that prelate was only one of several* to whom the cause was to be referred; and, as he had not received any commission from Rome, his decision might not be ratified at Rome. This was quite reasonable; and the attempt on the other part proved, that the Legate did not intend to execute the treaty in the spirit in which Miltitz had negotiated it.
A stronger proof of this immediately followed. Miltitz, now acting on the principles and under the immediate orders of Gaetan, returned to that hopeless subject which, when left to his own judgment, he had so prudently abandoned-he repeated the call for "retracta
* There is some confusion as to this point; but it is not important.
tion;" he again obtruded this, as the shortest and the surest method of concluding the controversy. It was certain that Luther would refuse this; that he considered the demand as an insult to his reason, and was far less prepared to obey than to resent it. Yet the pride of ecclesiastical bigotry persisted; and by disdaining, even at this dangerous crisis, the suggestions, not of common justice only, but of common discretion, it hastened the sure approach of its own humiliation.
Thus the compromise with Miltitz remained without any effect, and the offer of submission and fidelity, which was tendered in the most respectful terms, and which ought to have been embraced with eagerness, was allowed to lie unaccepted and even unacknowledged. Meanwhile the moment passed away. Other circumstances arose from other quarters. The dispute extended; the principles involved in it spread farther and wider; and every month that left them unrepressed increased their strength and confidence, and gave them an irrevocable advantage.
THE DISPUTATION AT LEIPSIG.
Andrew Bodenstein Carlstadt-replies to the Obelisks of Eck-Luther at Augsburg arranges a disputation between them-fixed for Leipsig— the disputants arrive-settlement of preliminaries-certain results of the controversy-opening address of Peter Mosellanus-religious ceremonies-dispute between Carlstadt and Eck-on free-will and grace -characters of the two disputants-brief notice of the disputeLuther's remark upon it-the doctrine of Luther and Carlstadt on this subject-why necessarily unpalatable both to scholastics and divines— Luther's part in this business-Eck's thirteen Theses-Luther's antagonist thirteen-the last on the foundation of the papal powerthe court of Saxony demurs-Luther to Spalatin-Duke George remains in suspense-Luther goes to Leipsig notwithstanding-there Eck obtains permission for Luther to dispute with him-the friends of both parties dissuade the debate-they persist-the subjects-Purgatory -Indulgences-Penance-Absolution-but chiefly the thirteenth proposition-stigma of the Bohemian heresy affixed on Luther-the real use of the disputation-both claim the victory-Eck most loudly-the Leipsigers all in his favour-subsequent proceedings-Eck addresses Frederick-Luther and Carlstadt reply-Luther publishes his "Solutions of the Theses"-being the substance of his argument-Ecolampadius and Melancthon take the field on his side-Jerome Emser writes against him, repeating the Bohemian slander-Luther's Sermon on the Eucharist and consequent imputations-his indignation and confident letter to Spalatin-change of the ground of attack on him.
AN event had been for some months in preparation which, though it did not originate directly in the affair of Luther, involved both himself and his opinions more deeply than he at first foresaw, and exerted no slight influence on the progress of his cause. Andrew Bodenstein was born at a place in Franconia, whence he derived the surname of Carlstadt. A distinguished theo