תמונות בעמוד

ubi justis conditionibus iniri possit, pertinaciter refugere ; neque iniquis conditionibus stolide timideve, admittere; aut vana spe pacis deliniti, ad servitutis Papalis jugum colla submittere, quod neque nos, neque patres nostri ferre potuere. Hoc tam grave scandalum, tam perniciosam prevaricationem ab Ecclesiis Reformatis ut semper avertat Peus, summo ardore precatur,

Spectatissime Vir,
Frater tuus in Christo colendissimus, &c.

Maii 22, 1719.





ALTHOUGH I hold Dr. Mosheim in high esteem for bistorical abilities, erudition, and candour, generally speaking, yet think it might be of use for the reader to bear in mind the following particulars.

1. He seems to consider the church of Rome as the true church, or the church of Christ, at least until the Reformation, although she had become, for centuries, Mystery, Babylon, and the Man of Sin, &c.

2. All that deviated from her and bore testimony against her corrup: tions, before Luther, and many of those after, be brands with the most hateful names, such as heretics, schismatics, sectaries, fanatics, faction, pests, holders of pestilential errors, motley tribe, detestable fanatics, &c. &c.

3. At the same time many of these sectaries, according to his own account, carried the reformation much farther than Luther, and from better motives, though not with equal success.

4. The account we bave of these sectaries is chiefly from their enemies, which abates much of its credit.

5. Many of these sectaries were Baptists, for hundreds of years back, though they were known by various other names.

6. Although be allows that dipping was the ancient and primitive mode of Baptism, yet he inveighs more bitterly against the Baptists than any other sect.

7. The Arminians, Arians, and Socinians, he treats with considerable respect.

8. He often speaks of the bishops and other prelates as pious and learned, while in other places he inveighs against them for ignorance, and every species of wickedness.

9. The conversion of the heathen he considers as a pious work, though it was often effected by fraud, intrigue, fire, and sword; and the converts, such as they were, deprived of their liberty, and subjected to the tyranny of the church.

10. He intimates that the Baptists were unfavourable to magistrates and penal laws, but gives no authority.

11. That the Baptists require no explicit or circumstantial declaration of their religious sentiments, from those that enter into their communion, as he says, is equally unfounded.

12. That our author is not perfectly candid, consistent, and accurate on all occasions, has been observed by his translator.

Philadelphia, 4th Month, 10th, 1811.

The following Vindication was published at the end of the edition of Mosheim's Ecclesiastical History, printed in Philadelphia, in 1800. It is but just to remark, that, a- far as regards the religious society called Quakers, the translation of s. Maclaine is very faulty; the translator has in. terwoven his own sentiments in such a manner with those of the original author, both in the notes and in the text, that it is impossible for a mere English reader to distinguish them; and in divers instances, he has entirely contradicted him. This will be evident to all, if a literal translation of Mosheim shall ever be published. *








An American edition of Mosheim's ECCLESIASTICAL History being nearly completed, in which is contained a very false account of the principles, doctrine, and discipline of our religious society; a very erroneous character of George Fox, and divers other misrepresentations and untrue charges ; and although full answers and refutations of these calumnies have been heretofore publisbed, yet as this work may fall into the hands of persons unacquainted with the true state of facts, we think it a point of justice due to the cause of truth and to our religious society, and for the information of candid and unprejudiced minds, briefly to give what, from authentic histories and our own knowledge, we have ascertained is a just narration.

Men who consider themselves accountable for their words and actions, and think it highly criminal to deceive

* The editor of the present edition, since the above note was sent for publication, has obtained a literal and accurate translation, from a Latin 4to. copy in the library at Cambridge. And, by comparing it with A. Maclaine's translation, discovers that Mr. M. has taken an unauthorized freedom with his author ; and, in many instances, been very profuse and invective.

To a candid reader it would evidently appear, that Mr. Maclainc " has interwoven his own sentiments" with unusual acrimony.

others, by either disguising or falsification, who are wellinformed and acquainted with the facts and subjects they relate or write upon, are entitled to greater credit than professed and avowed opposers, who from mistaken motives publish distortions and misconstructions. From the misrepresentations and wrong accounts given by our adversaries, we have no doubt Mosheim has taken most of bis narrative.

The true character of George Fox has been drawn by men of the first respectability and the fullest information ; men who were conversant with him from his youth to his close ; and a cloud of witnesses and authentic testimonies can be produced to prove, that he was a pious, sober, solid, and exemplary man, and no fanatic; eminently qualified for the work he was raised up to promote. As we wish to be brief, we shall omit recurring to other documents, and only cite a few sentences from a preface to George Fox's Journal, written by William Penn, as follows: " He was a man that God endowed with a clear and wonderful depth, a discerner of others' spirits, and very much a master of his own.

“He was of an innocent life, no busybody nor self-seeker, neither touchy nor critical. So meek, contented, modest, steady, tender, it was a pleasure to be in his company.

“ As he was unwearied, so he was undaunted in his services for God. For in all things he acquitted himself like a man, a new and heavenly-minded man, a divine and a naturalist, and all of God Almighty's making. I have been surprised, at his questions and answers in natural things, that whilst he was ignorant of useless and sophistical science, he had in him the foundation of useful and commendable knowledge, and cherished it every where.

“ Thus he lived and sojourned among us, and as he lived, so he died, feeling in his last moments the same eternal power that had raised and preserved him.”

Instead of the first association of Quakers "being mostly composed of visionary fanatics, and of persons that really seemed to be disordered in their brains,” William Penn, in his aforesaid preface, gives the names of a number of eminent men who became members of this society, and who were instrumental with many others, in spreading and propagating the doctrines which they had espoused, and also of establishing a discipline and church government which

must be allowed to be a compact and well-regulated system of good order.

The charge of their “ running like bacchanals through the towns and villages, declaiming against episcopacy, presbyterianism, and every fixed form of religion, &c. trampling upon the laws, and making use of their pretended inspirations to excite the most vehement commotions both in church and state," and divers other scandalous aspersions, we deny.

That tumults were raised by their opposers, is very true, and also that they refused complying with laws which they conceived as violating the rights of conscience; but that in any one instance they offered violence to the person of

any man, or departed from their peaceable testimony, is false. That they bore beatings, imprisonment, and death, with patience, meekness, and perseverance, praying for their enemies, is a fact indisputable and of great notoriety; so that in time, when the clouds of prejudice were dissipated, and their innocence fully manifested, way was made in the minds of rulers for their toleration : and this may with truth be said, that such of them as keep true to their principles, are as good members of civil society as any other people, and have never been found in any plots or combinations against the governments, which, in the course of providence, have been set over them.

The conduct of James Naylor, in his dark and bewildered state, we freely condemn; but his punishment was rigorous in the extreme. That two or three weak persons were deluded, and paid a sort of divine honour to him, is confessed; but that this was in any degree countenanced by our religious society, is positively denied; but on the contrary, was fully reprobated by them. Although James Naylor had lamentably missed his way, yet we have reason to believe, he was, through divine mercy, restored to a sound mind. He published a condemnation of his misconduct, and we reverently hope he died in peace with God and love to all men.

As to the absurd story of “ one of these people going to the parliament house with a drawn sword, and wounding several, and saying he was inspired by the Holy Spirit to kill every man that sat in that house,” it is a very fiction, and we deny that any acknowledged member among us ever was guilty of such conduct.

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