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confirm them in this well-founded aversion. Should it even be granted, that proselytes to popery have been made among the ignorant and unwary, by the emissaries of Rome, this would by no means invalidate what I here maintain ; though it may justly be considered as a powerful incentive to the zeal and vigilance of rulers, temporal and spiritual, of the pastors and people of the reformed churches, against the encroachments of Rome.
The author of the Confessional complains, and perhaps justly, of the bold and public appearance which popery has of late made in England. 6 The papists,” says he, “strengthened and animated by an influx of Jesuits, expelled even from popish countries, for crimes and practices of the worst complexion, open public mass houses, and affront the laws of this protestant kingdom in other respects, not without insulting some of those who endeavour to check their insolence. And we are told, with the utmost coolness and composure, that popish bishops go about here, and exercise every part of their function, without offence, and without observation. This is, indeed, a circumstance that the friends of reformation and religious liberty cannot behold without offence; I say, the friends of religious liberty ; because the maintenance of all liberty, buth civil and religious, depends on circumscribing popery within proper bounds; since popery is not a system of innocent speculative opinions, but a yoke of despotism, an enormous mixture of princely and priestly tyranny, designed to enslave the consciences of mankind, and to destroy their most sacred and invaluable rights. But, at the same time, I do not think we can, from this public appearance of popery, rationally conclude that it gains ground; much less, as the author of the Confessional suggests, that the two hierarchies, i. e. the episcopal and the popish, are growing daily more and more into a resemblance of each other. The natural reason of this bold appearance of popery is the spirit of toleration, that has been carried to a great height, and has rendered the execution of the laws against papists, in the time past, less rigorous and severe.
How it may be proper to act with regard to the growing insolence of popery, is a matter that must be left to the wisdom and clemency of government. Rigour against any thing that bears the name of a religion, gives pain to a candid and generous mind; and it is certainly more eligible
public as the same
Hlence of popeney of governreligion, giv
to extend too far, than to circumscribe too narrowly, the bounds of forbearance, and indulgent charity.
If the dangerous tendency of popery, considered as a pernicious system of policy, should be pleaded as a sufficient reason to except it from the indulgence due to merely speculative systems of theology; if the voice of history should be appealed to, as declaring the assassinations, rebellions, conspiracies, the horrid scenes of carnage and desolation, that popery has produced; if standing principles and maxims of the Roman church should be quoted, which authorize these enormities; if it should be alleged, finally, that popery is much more malignant and dangerous in Great Britain than in any other Protestant country; I acknowledge that all these pleas against popery are well founded, and plead for modifications to the connivance which the clemency of government may think proper to grant to that unfriendly system of religion. All I wish is, that mercy and humanity may ever accompany the execution of justice; and that nothing like merely religious persecution may stain the British annals. And all I maintain with respect to the chief point under consideration is that the public appearance of popery, which is justly complained of, is no certain proof of its growth, but rather shows its indiscretion than its strength, and the declining vigour of our zeal than the growing influence of its maxims.
A CIRCUMSTANTIAL AND EXACT ACCOUNT OF THE CORRESPONDENCE THAT WAS CARRIED ON IN THE YEAR 1717 AND 1718, BETWEEN DR. WILLIAM WAKE, ARCHBISHOP OF CANTERBURY, AND CERTAIN DOCTORS OF THE SORBONNE AT PARIS, RELATIVE TO A PROJECT OF UNION BETWEEN THE ENGLISH AND GALLICAX CHURCHES.
---Magis amica veritas.
When the famous Bossuet, bishop of Meaux, laid an insidious snare for unthinking protestants, in his artful"Exposition of the Doctrine of the Church of Rome,” the pious and learned Dr. Wake unmasked this deceiver; and the writings he published on this occasion gave him a distinguished rank among the victorious champions of the protestant cause. Should any person, who had perused these writings, be informed, that this " pretended champion of the protestant religion, had set on foot a project for union with a popish church, and that with concessions in favour of the grossest superstition and idolatry,'d he would be apt to stare ; at least, he would require the strongest possible evidence for a fact, in all appearance, so contradictory and unaccountable. This accusation has, nevertheless, been brought against the eminent prelate, by the ingenious and intrepid author of the Confessional ; and it is founded upon an extraordinary passage in Dr. Mosheim's Ecclesiastical History; where we are told, that Dr. Wake "formed a project of peace and union between the English and Gallican churches, founded upon this condition, that each of the two communities should retain the greatest part of their respective and peculiar doctrines." This passage, though it is, perhaps, too uncharitably interpreted by the author already mentioned, would furnish, without doubt, just matter of censure, were it founded in truth. I was both surprised and perplexed while I was translating it. I could not procure immediately proper information with respect to the fact, nor could I examine Mosheim's proofs of this strange assertion, because he alleged none. Destitute of materials, either to invalidate or confirm the fact, I made a slight mention, in a short note, of a correspondence which had been carried on between archbishop Wake and Dr. Du Pin, with the particulars of which I was not acquainted; and, in this my ignorance, only inade a general observation, drawn from Dr. Wake's known zeal for the protestant religion, which was designed, not to confirm that assertion, but rather to insinuate my disbelief of it. It never could come into my head, that the interests of the protestant religion would have been safe in archbishop Wake's hands, had I given the smallest degree of credit to Dr. Mosheim's assertion, or even suspected that that eminent prelate was inclined to form a union between the “ Eri
d See the Confessional, 2d edition, Pref. p. 1xxvi. e See the English Translation of Mosheim's History, vol. ii. p. 576. Dr. Mosheim had certainly a very imperfect idea of this correspondence; and he seems to have been misled by the account of it which Kiorningius bas given in bis Dissertation De Consecrationibus Episcoporum Anglorum, published at Helmstadt in 1739 ; which account, notwithstanding the means of informatior its author seemed to have by his journey to England, and his conversations with Dr. Courrayer, is full of mistakes. Thus Kiorningius tells us, that Dr. Wake submitted to the judgment of the Romnish doctors, bis correspondents, the conditions of peace between the two churches, which he had drawn up; that he sent a learned man, Dr. Wilkins, his chaplain, to Paris, to forward and complete, if possible, the projected union; that in a certain assembly, held at Paris, the difficulties of promoting this union withou
the pope's concurrence were insisted upon by some men of high rank, who seemed inclined to the union, and that these difficulties put an end to the conferences; that, however, two French divines, whom he supposes to be Du Pin and Girardin, were sent to England to propose new terms.--it now happens unluckily for Mr. Kiorningius's reputation as a historian, that not one syllable of all this is true, as will appear sutficiently to the reader, who peruses with attention the account, and the pieces, which there lay before the public. But one of the most egregious errors in the account given by Kiorningius, is at page 61 ot his Dissertation, where he says, that archbishop Wake was so much elated with the prospect of success in the scheme of an accommodation, that he acquainted the divines of Geneva with it in 1719, and plainly intiinated to them, that he thought it an easier thing than reconciling the protestants with each other. Let us now see where Kiorningius received this information. Why, truly, it was from a letter of Dr. Wake to professer Turretin of Geneva, in which there is not one syllable relative to a scheme of union between the English and Gallican cburches; and yet Kiorningius quotes a passage in this letter as the only authority he has for this affirmation. The case was thus: Dr. Wake, in the former part of his letter to Turretin, speaks of the sufferings of the liungarian and Piedmontese churches, which he had successfully endeavoured to alleviate, by engaging George I. to intercede in their behalf; and then proceeds to express his desire of healing the differences that disturbed the union of the protestant churches -abroad. Interim, says lie, dum hæc, i. e. the endeavours to relieve the Hungarian and Piedmontese churches, feliciter peraguntur ignoscite, Fratres Dilectissimi, si majoris quidem laboris atque difficultatis, sed longe marimi nobis commodi inceptum nobis proponam ; unionem nimirum, &c. Professor Turretin, in his work, entitled, Nubes Testium, printed only the latter part of Dr. Wake's letter, beginning with the words, Interim dum hæc feliciter, uti spero, peraguntur ; and Kiorningilis, not having seen the preceding part of this letter, which relates to the Hungarian and Piedmontese churches, and with which these words are connected, took it into his head that these words were relative to the scheme of union between the English and Gallican churches.-Nor did he only take this into his head by way of conjecture, but he affirms, very sturdily and positively that the words have this signification : Hæc verba, says he, langunt pacis cum Gal. lis instaurando negolium, quod ex temporum rationibus manifestum est. To show him, however, that he is grossly mistaken, I have published, among the annexed pieces, No. 88. the whole Letter of archbishop Wake to Turretin.
glish and Gallican churches, founded on this condition, that each of the two communities should retain the greatest part of their respective and peculiar doctrines."
If the author of the Confessional had given a little more attention to this, he could not have represented me, as confirming the fact alleged by Mosheim, much less as giving it, what he is pleased to call the sanction of my approbation. I did not confirm the fact; for I only said there was a correspondence on the subject, without speaking a syllable of the unpleasing condition that forms the charge against Dr. Wake. I shall not enter here into a debate about the grammatical import of my expressions; as I have something more interesting to present to the reader, who is curious of information about archbishop Wake's real conduct in relation to the correspondence already mentioned. I have been favoured with authentic copies of the letters which passed in this correspondence, which are now in the hands of Mr. Beauvoir of Canterbury, the worthy son of the clergyman who was chaplain to lord Stair in the year 1717, and also with others, from the valuable collection of manuscripts left by Dr. Wake to the library of Christ's Church College in Oxford. It is from these letters that I have drawn the following account, at the end of which copies of them are printed, to serve as proofs of the truth of this relation, which I publish with a disinterested regard to truth. This impartiality may be, in some measure, expected from my situation in life, which has placed me at a distance from the scenes of religious and ecclesi- astical contention in England, and cut me off from those personal connexions, that nourish the prejudices of a party spirit, more than many are aware of; but it would be still more expected from my principles, were they known. · From this narrative, confirmed by authentic papers, it will appear with the utmost evidence;
1st. That archbishop Wake was not the first mover in this correspondence, nor the person that formed the project of union between the English and Gallican churches.
2dly. That he never made any concessions, nor offered to give up, for the sake of peace, any one point of the established doctrine and discipline of the church of England, in order to promote this union.
3dly. That any desires of union with the church of Rome, expressed in the archbishop's letters, proceeded from the