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Ridley, indeed, strove, not without success, to rescue, not these treasures, but endowments for religious and charitable foundations, from the hands of the needy Government and the rapacious nobles. He extorted the foundation and endowment of Bridewell Hospital for the houseless poor, and threw it open to the city-an act (remarkable in those days) of wise charity, which by no means stands alone in these periods of prodigal and almost lawless rapine. To the reign of Edward VI. and in great part to the influence of Bishop Ridley, belongs the noble foundation of Christ's Hospital.
“We read these seemingly wanton demolitions, desecrations, spoliations, with indignation, sorrow, and shame. Yet are we not unjust to those to whom we owe so deep, so incalculable a debt of gratitude ? Many of these observances, much of the garniture of the august ceremonials, much of the rich architectural shrine-work, much of the splendid decorations of the churches, which to us may be [? Ed.] the incentives, the language, and expression of genuine spiritual piety, to the Reformers were part and portion-an inseparable part and portion-of that vast system of debasing superstition, of religious tyranny, of sacerdotal domination, the intolerable yoke of which it was their mission to burst, if they would open to themselves and to the world the realm of religious freedom and true Christianity. There are higher things than Gothic fretwork or 'storied windows richly dight'-truth, pure worship, and, last born, Christian tolerance and charity. If the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ was to be revealed to mankind, there must first be ejected from the Temple the crowd of subordinate objects of worship, which had obscured and repelled to an unapproachable distance the one centre of adoration-God through Christ and in Christ. If the priesthood, from gods as they sometimes called them. selves, with the power of making God, of materialising him, even to the grossest form,-if the priesthood, the infallible awarders of everlasting death and everlasting life, were to shrink into instructors of the people, examples to the people, and ministers of the two Holy Sacraments; if the trade in religion, which had flourished at its height in the Cathedral of St. Paul's, was to be cast forth, and the religion of Paul the Apostle to be restored in the Church of St. Paul, in all its power, majesty, wisdom, authority-great changes were inevitable. If in these changes the Reformers knew not where to arrest their zeal; if they were overborne by men whose motives and aims were not reformation, but spoliation—not the reinstatement of the true faith and pure morality of Christianity, but unblushing rapacity and immoral love of plunder-the Church was paying the penalty for ages of all-absorbing accumulation of dangerous, too tempting wealth.” (pp. 229—231.)
We ought to add, that St. Paul's had the honour of giving two of the noblest victims to the Marian prosecution-her Bishop Ridley, and John Rogers, one of her Prebendaries, the Protomartyrs of the English Church.
Bishop Grindal, Spenser's "wise Algrind,” and Deans Nowell and Donne, were the great celebrities of the reigns of Elizabeth
and James; but the cathedral had suffered severely when it was struck by lightning in the great storm of 1561 ; and although partially repaired, was in a state very far from its pristine glory, during the latter part of the reign of Elizabeth and James I. It was restored in questionable taste by Inigo Jones, during the Episcopate of Laud and the disastrous reign of Charles I.; and was not destroyed during the Commonwealth, “ for it would have been a work of cost and labour to destroy it.” The scaffolding erected round the tower was assigned to Colonel Jephson's regiment for £1746 15s. 8d., due as arrears of pay. In the reign of Charles II, the most memorable incident connected with it was its total destruction in the Great Fire. The genius of Wren subsequently erected the noble pile with which Englishmen are so familiar, and we would fully endorse Mr. Fergusson's remark :
“ It will hardly be disputed that the exterior of St. Paul's surpasses in beauty of design all the other examples of the same class which have yet been carried out; and whether seen from a distance or near, it is, externally at least, one of the grandest and most beautiful churches of Europe.” (p. 401.)
Dean Milman's account of this restoration will be read with interest. He adds but little about its subsequent history. Many illustrious names, such as Stillingfleet, Tillotson, Sherlock, Newton, Lowth, Porteus, Copleston, Blomfield, Tait, are to be found amongst its dignitaries; some of England's noblest sons, as Wellington and Nelson, buried in a sarcophagus designed for Cardinal Wolsey by Torregiano, repose within St. Paul's, and monuments to men eminent in every walk of life are ranged around its walls, but we cannot stay to number up their names.
In this notice of the Cathedral, we must not omit mention of Paul's Cross. While the chantries ministered only to superstitious delusions, and the rude and illiterate Mass Priests who officiated in them, by their foul excesses (p. 148) brought discredit on their better brethren (if, says Dean Milman, such there were), Paul's Cross, even from the time of Richard I., was a conspicuous and influential institution in London. It was the pulpit of the Church of England for several ages; folksmote were summoned, and civil edicts and Papal Bulls promulgated, there; it stood at the north east corner of the Cathedral, looking towards Cheapside. The services recently restored under the Dome, and the royal proclamations pasted on the Mansion House, in some measure reproduce the uses of the Cross. There was a covered gallery for the King and his retinue when they attended; but all the rest of the congregation, even the Mayor and Aldermen, stood in the open air. During the Reformation period, Paul's Cross was the battle field of religious conflict, in which Friar Forest and Father Latimer, the martyr Barnes and the subtle Gardiner, by turns waged controversial warfare. We cannot doubt the Dean's assertion, that “if the Sermons delivered there could be recovered and arranged, they would prove a living and instructive chronicle of the Reformation.” When no newspaper press was in existence, these Sermons in some measure supplied its place. The most distinguished ecclesiastics, especially from the Universities, were summoned to preach there before the Court and the City of London.
Our readers will, we are sure, not be sorry if we add to the Dean's account that curious record of past times, the memorable incident of Richard Hooker's sermon at the Cross. Dissuaded by a friend from “footing” it to London from Oxford, he suffered so much from unusual horse exercise and from cold, that he was hardly able to preach. His sermon provoked controversy ; but this was not so bad as the kindness of Mrs. Churchman, who kept the Shunamite's house, and had nursed him in his distemper. She persuaded him that “he was a man of tender constitution, and that it was best for him to have a wife to nurse him.” As old Izaak Walton says, like a true Nathaniel, fearing no guile, he gave her the power Eleazar was trusted with, and she married him to her daughter Joan; so he had to exchange the tranquillity of pleasant Corpus, “that garden of piety, of pleasure and peace, and sweet conversation,” for contentions compared by Solomon to a dripping house. The quaint reflections of the old angler upon this ill-assorted match are pleasant to read; and his curious speculations why, by a secret sacred wheel of Providence, good wives are denied to good men, and this blessing was denied to patient Job, to meek Moses, and to meek and patient Mr. Hooker. As Hooker himself said, “If saints have usually a double share in the miseries of this life, I, who am none, ought not to repine at what my wise Creator hath appointed me.” Such were the difficulties and perils of preaching a Sermon at “the Special Services” in the days of Queen Elizabeth.
Upon the abominations connected with Paul's Walk, which, both in Popish and Reformation times, transformed the nave and aisles of the Cathedral into a mart of business of all kinds, and a sanctuary for knaves and thieves,-So that, as Bishop Earle remarks, it became the general “mint of all famous lies which were there, like the legends of Popery, first coined and stamped in the Church,”—we do not care to dwell; nor upon the miracle plays, or the lotteries, which were first drawn at St. Paul's. For which things at the doors of churches, as the Dean says, we must now go to Rome.
We may notice that, with the exception of Bishops and Deans, few persons of eminence were buried in old St. Paul's until the reign of Elizabeth, and it would have been well if the practice of burying elsewhere had been continued. We might then have had the tombs still spared to us of John of Gaunt, of Lily and Linacre, of Sir Nicholas Bacon, of Sir Philip Sidney, of Francis Walsingham, and Sir Christopher Hatton, and we ought to add of Van Dyck. It is curious that only one Lord Mayor of London should have been buried in the Cathedral Church; the famous citizens of London found their sepulchre elsewhere.
We have thus endeavoured to place before our readers some idea of Dean Milman's volume. As it is a posthumous work of the author, which lacked his own final revision, we would not criticise severely inaccuracies of fact and expression which occur in the course of the narrative; nor can we profess to sympathise with all the views which he propounds. His theological bias was a matter of notoriety, and, if the author had been alive, might have been a suitable subject for comment; he is now beyond human censure or approval, and we would therefore prefer to dwell, as we have striven to do, upon what seemed valuable in this his last literary performance, rather than to detect error and to note shortcoming. His talents and learning have secured him an honourable place among English authors, nor will his name readily perish from among them.
THOROLD'S “PRESENCE OF CHRIST.”
The Presence of Christ. By the Rev. Anthony W. Thorold, M.A.,
Prebendary of York; Minister of Curzon Chapel, Mayfair, and Chaplain to the Archbishop of York. Strahan and Co. 1869.
This volume contains the substance of some Lectures on the 23rd Psalm, preached in the Parish Church of St. Giles in the Fields during the Lent of 1865. The Lectures were recast and embodied in the form in which they now appear, during a season of “ sickness and inactivity”; and it would be well if the sick chamber were in all cases converted, as it might be, into a sanctuary from which, as from that of Elisha, by word, by example, and often, as in the present instance, by writing also, God may be pleased to send forth salvation for Israel, by lead
to the pd, or amongst mongst those
ing some, whether amongst those who have already known the Lord, or amongst those who have been hitherto strangers to the power of His gospel, “to abide in Him as their Saviour, to walk with Him as their friend, and to look for Him as their King."
Mr. Thorold assumes, and not without reason, that no sound objection can be raised to his exposition of this Psalm on the ground that he identifies the subject of it, “the Lord my Shepherd, with the Good Shepherd' who is represented by our Lord Himself as laying down His life for the sheep.”
We are not disposed to regard it as a settled point that this Psalm “ traces David's history over his entire life” (p. 34), or that the immediate allusion in ver. 5 is “to the touching and bountiful hospitality with which the aged Barzillai welcomed David when an exile from his home and country.” (p. 173.) Whilst freely admitting that much may be said in favour of Mr. Thorold's opinion as to the date of this Psalm, we think that much may be said, also, in favour of the supposition that it was written at a period when the incidents of his shepherd life, and of his flight from the face of Saul, were still fresh in David's memory, and ere his life was overshadowed by that cloud which, after his grievous sin, darkened the remnant of his days.
But the doubt which we feel as to the correctness of Mr. Thorold's opinion, respecting the date of its composition, does not at all interfere with our admiration of his very able and profitable exposition of the practical lessons with which this Psalm is replete.
If we were to transcribe all the passages to which this commendation is applicable, we should hardly know where to begin, and we should be at a still greater loss to know where to end short of the conclusion of the volume.
We propose for this, as well as for other reasons, to restrict our quotations to the fourth Lecture. The theme of this Lecture is the fourth verse of the Psalm, “Yea, though I walk through the valley of the shadow of death, I will fear no evil; for Thou art with me; Thy rod and Thy staff they comfort
Mr. Thorold makes some few general remarks, in the beginning of this Lecture, on the presence and the sympathy of Christ. He then goes on to speak of the fear of death—to show that it is a reasonable fear, a fear which, whilst it ought not to be overrated on the one hand, ought not to be despised on the other. After some further remarks on the nature and the consequences of death, Mr. Thorold proceeds thus to show what is the nature of that victory which overcomes death and the world ; and how He who has destroyed the power of death