« PoprzedniaDalej »
THE present volume comprises two Litanies, the English Prayer Book of 1559, the Godly Prayers, the Ordinal of 1559, the Latin Prayer Book of 1560, the New Calendar of 1561, and many Occasional Forms of Prayer set forth, chiefly by public authority, in the latter portion of the sixteenth century.
1. The peculiarity of the first Litany is its having Elizabeth's name, as queen, conjointly with the entreaty for deliverance from the tyranny of the bishop of Rome, and all his detestable enormities.' See pp. 4, 12, 70. It was apparently an unauthorised publication of the Protestants, solicitous, after the death of Mary, to recover (if possible) their lost ground. For the petition Pitifully behold the dolour1 of our hart,' and the collects which are appended, prove that the Litany was not taken, as on any other supposition it undoubtedly would have been taken, from either of Edward's Prayer Books; but, most probably, with due omissions, from his Primer of 1547, or from Henry's Primer of 1545. The following passage out of the Proclamation, prefixed in the king's name to the Order of the Communion, shews a similar desire of anticipating public measures respecting religion to have existed in Edward's time :- Whiche thing wee (by the help of God) mooste ernestly entende to bryng to effecte: Willyng all our louing subiectes in the meanetyme, to stay and quyet them selfes wyth this our direction, as men content to followe aucthoritie (accordyng to the bounden duety of subiectes) and not enterprisyng to roune afore, and so by their rashenes become the greatest hynderers of such thynges, as they more arrogantly then godly wolde seme (by their awne privat aucthoritie) mooste hotly to set forwarde.'
1 The Ordinal of March, 1549 [1550-Original Letters, p. 81], is the only one of our Formularies, wherein we discover this expression; which, after all, is nothing more than a literal translation of the ancient Latin. See p. 343.
The University library, Cambridge (A. 17. 30), possesses another copy of this Litany, resembling the one here reprinted in every minute particular, but not in having the petition against the bishop of Rome,' which is its important feature. They constitute, then, two editions of the same publication; and as both evidently preceded The Letanye vsed in the Quenes Maiesties Chappel,' they must be referred to the very commencement of Elizabeth's reign. Each copy is in small octavo, and collates A iv.: though perfect, however, it has neither title-page nor colophon. Monumenta Ritualia, Vol. II. p. 98, note 74.
2. Instead of interfering in religious matters, Elizabeth wished quietly to wait for the decision of a parliament thereupon; and this, from no lukewarmness', surely, about the progress of the reformed doctrines, which, early in 1559, she is described by Cook and Jewel as most zealously and openly favouring; but rather, on the contrary, through her intense fear of allowing innovations. There was also an additional reason, why she exhibited so much reluctance to act without the sanction of the law, namely, lest the matter should seem to have been accomplished, not so much by the judgment of discreet men, as in compliance with the impulse of a furious multitude.' Still, how cautious and prudent soever she was herself, she could not infuse the same feeling into either division of her people. Now did both the Evangelics and the Papalins bestir themselves for their Parties.' Strype's Annals, Vol. 1. p. 41. Nor was this conduct very unnatural, inasmuch as each, of course, drew omens of success, and therefore arguments for boldness, from the continued silence of the queen. Zurich Letters, Second Edition, pp. 16, 19, 22, 29.
At length, either really (as the document intimated) to put a stop to the internal dissensions of the Protestant party, 'some declaring for Geneva, and some for Frankfort' (ibid. p. 17), or covertly to discourage and cripple the Papists, whose ministers were much more numerous, on December
1 Nares, indeed, in his Memoirs of Burleigh (Vol. I. p. 43), declares, that her opinions were at first liable to some doubts;' and Ranke (History of the Popes, Book 1. chap. 5,) draws the same unwarranted conclusion from the fact of her having caused her accession to be notified to the reigning Pope.
the 27th Elizabeth sent out a proclamation, addressed to the lord mayor of London, condemning unfruteful dispute in matters of religion.' Henceforth, and until the meeting of parliament, men were solely to gyve audience to the gospels and epistels, commonly called the gospel and epistel of the day, and to the ten commaundments, [but apart from the responses see pp. 19, 20,] in the vulgar tongue, without exposition or addition of any maner sense or meaning to be applyed or added: or to use any other maner publick prayer, rite, or ceremony in the church, but that which is already used, and by law receaved: or the common letany used at this present in her majesty's own chappel: and the Lord's prayer, and the crede in English.' Ibid. p. 16, note 4. Thus, notwithstanding the prohibition against preaching, a concession was made in favour of both religious persuasions. The Roman catholics were still to enjoy, for a limited period, their breviaries, and the celebration of their mass with all its rites, the elevation of the host only excepted (Burnet, Vol. 1. p. 378); whilst to the Protestants, 'who could not yet get the Churches,' was granted the privilege of having the public worship partly carried on in their own language. Collier, Vol. 1. p. 411. And yet the Protestants, at least, were not entirely debarred from preaching. In open private houses they might, by connivance of the magistrates, exercise their gifts; and during Lent they were admitted three times a week to preach even before the court. Moreover, some of them, more zealous than the rest, did not hesitate, in defiance of the proclamation, to preach the gospel in certain parish-churches.' Zurich Letters, pp. 21, 57, 58. Others, again, went so far as to introduce into their churches the Prayer Book, that, we may presume, of 1552, the last edition which could then be extant. For Pilkington (p. 626.) asks in 1563,- Did not many in the university, and abroad in the realm, use this service openly and commonly in their churches, afore it was received or enacted by parliament ?'
Simultaneously with the above proclamation, (and perhaps earlier,) must also have appeared copies of the second Litany in this volume; since we learn from Fuller (Book ix. p. 51),
2 Edward VI. under circumstances in every respect similar, had done the same thing on the 23rd of September, 1548. Wilkins' Concilia, Vol. IV. p. 30.
that it began to be used on Sunday the first of January, 1559, and he calls it 'the best new yeers gift that ever was bestowed on England.' Who arranged it, we know not; yet we need scarcely doubt of their being the same persons that were employed about the Prayer Book, a commission having been issued in December, 1558, for its revisal. Strype's Annals, Vol. 1. p. 52. Cardwell's History of Conferences, pp. 43-48. Besides the copy of the Litany used for the present publication, another exists in the library of Emmanuel College, Cambridge. Though bearing the date 1559, both are early editions, this date being according to the modern method of beginning the year in January, as Jugge alone is the printer, and, from February the 7th, he had Cawode for his partner. Herbert's Ames, p. 713.
3. The parliament met for business on the 25th of January, 1559, but April the 28th arrived ere the act of uniformity passed both houses. Cardwell, pp. 24, 30. By this act the Prayer Book, as a second time revised, was ordered to be taken again into regular use only from and after the feaste of the Natiuitie of sainct John Baptist,' whereas the queen, through the greatness of her zeal, caused it to be read in her chapel on Sunday the 12th of May, the very first Sunday after the dissolution of the parliament; and on the following Wednesday it was also read before 'a very august Assembly of the Court' at St Paul's cathedral. Strype's Grindal, p. 24. Zurich Letters, pp. 37, 38. The whole body of the clergy, it is well known, did not display equal zeal in the cause (see Strype's Annals, Vol. 1. pp. 136, 137); nor, from the strength of their popish prepossessions, was it in any manner to be expected of them generally.
Few of the earlier Prayer Books of Elizabeth still remain in existence; and, notwithstanding the length of her reign, or, perhaps, in consequence of it, those put forth in later years are not very common. This may be deemed surprising; but it is much more surprising, that we know of no copy, natural though it was for such copies to be printed, answering in all points to the Book mentioned in the act. For it is there
1 Elizabeth had herself openly made alterations in the religious services on the previous Christmas day. Ellis's Letters, Second Series, Vol. I. p. 262. And, at most, two days subsequently this Litany was read before her.
said to be the booke aucthorised by Parliament in the .v. and sixt yere of the raygne of king Edward the sixt, with one alteracion, or addition of certayn Lessons to be vsed on euery Sonday in the yere, and the fourme of the Letanie altered and corrected, and two sentences only added in the deliuery of the Sacrament to the communicantes, and none other, or otherwyse.' To this description the copy, (believed to be the only one of its kind,) from which the present reprint has been made, comes nearest, a copy varying in another, and by no means an unimportant, point from its predecessor of 1552, as can be seen by comparing the second rubric on p. 53 in both editions. Cardwell, pp. 21, 36. It may be thought, too, to vary by not containing the protestation respecting kneeling at the reception of the elements, commanded, in October, 1552, to be placed at the end of the Communion service. That protestation, however, having been introduced by an express order of the privy council, nearly seven months subsequent to the date of the second act of uniformity, would seem rather to have been passed by unnoticed, as no integral part of Edward's Book, than intentionally omitted. But, though passed by, it lay neither forgotten nor neglected. Bishops Grindal and Horn, when writing, in 1567, to Bullinger and Gualter, assure them, that it continued to be 'most diligently declared, published, and impressed upon the people.' Zurich Letters, p. 277.
Of the next series of Prayer Books printed in 1559, (in folio, of course, the size exclusively designed for the public ministrations of the clergy,) there are four copies by Grafton extant, in the Bodleian, the library of Corpus Christi College, Oxford, the British Museum, and the University library, Cambridge. The British Museum, the Minster library, York, the Rev. W. Maskell, and the Rev. J. Mendham, have likewise copies by Jugge and Cawode3, which may, possibly, all
To twenty-four holidays, which in 1549 had collects, epistles, and gospels, and seven of them second lessons, proper first lessons, both for morning and evening, were now assigned: also, to two, a first lesson in the evening; and to one, a first lesson in the morning. Holidays, therefore, seem included by the act under the head of Sundays, whilst in the Prayer Book the reverse generally occurs.
* A copy of a very small size by the same printers, once the property of the duke of Sussex, is at present possessed by the earl of Ashburnham.