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a friend to peace, he was still more a friend to truth : and that, “ unless the Roman Catholics gave up “ some of their doctrines and rites," an union with them could never be effected. All this is contained in a letter written by the archbishop to Mr. Beauvoir, on receiving the Commonitorium. This letter is dated August 30, 1718; and the reader will find a copy of it subjoined to this appendix k. About a month after, his grace wrote a letter to Dr. Du-Pin, dated October 1, 1718, in which he complains of the tyranny of the pope, exhorts the Gallican doctors to throw off the papal yoke in a national council, since a general one is not to be expected; and declares, that this must be the great preliminary and fundamental principle of the projected union, which being settled, an uniformity might be brought about in other matters, or a diversity of sentiments mutually allowed, without any violation of peace or concord. The archbishop commends, in the same letter, the candor and openness that reign in the Commonitorium; entreats Dr. DuPin to write to him always upon the same footing, freely, and without disguise or reserve; and tells him he is pleased with several things in that piece, and with nothing more than with the doctor's declaring it as his opinion, that there is not a great difference between their respective sentiments; but adds, that he cannot at present give his sentiments at large concerning that piece!.
Dr. Wake seems to have aimed principally, in this correspondence, at bringing about a separation between the Gallican church and the court of Rome. The terms in which the French divines often spoke about the liberties of their church, might give him some hope that this separation would take place, if ever these divines should be countenanced by the civil power of France. But a man of the arch
k See this Letter, No. III.
1 See this Letter to Du-Pin, No. V. as also the archbishop's letters to Dr. P. Piers de Girardin, No. VI. VOL. VI.
bishop's sagacity could not expect that they would enter into an union with any other national church all at once. He acted, therefore, with dignity, as well as with prudence, when he declined to explain himself on the proposals contained in Du-Pin's Commonitorium. To have answered ambiguously, would have been mean; and to have answered explicitly, would have blasted his hopes of separating them from Rome, which separation he desired upon the principles of civil and ecclesiastical liberty, independent of the discussion of theological tenets. The archbishop's sentiments in this matter will still appear farther from the letters he wrote to Mr. Beauvoir, in October, November, and December, 1718, and the January following, of which the proper extracts are here subjoined m. It appears from these letters, that Dr. Wake insisted still upon the abolition of the pope's jurisdiction over the Gallican church, and leaving him no more than a primacy of rank and honor, and that merely by ecclesiastical authority, as he was once bishop of the imperial city; to which empty title our prelate seems willing to have consented, provided that it should be attended with no infringement of the independence. and privileges of each particular country and church. “prærogativam” (says the archbishop in his letter to Girardin", after having defied the court of Rome to produce any precept of Christ in favor of the primacy of its bishop) “ ecclesiæ concilia sedis imperialis
episcopo concesserint (etsi cadente imperio etiam “ eâ prærogativâ excidisse merito possit censeri) “ tamen, quod ad me attinet, servatis semper regno
rum juribus, ecclesiarum libertatibus, episcoporum dignitate, modo in cæteris conveniatur, per me “ licet, suo fruatur qualicumque primatu: non ego “illi locum primum, non inanem honoris titulum “ invideo.. At in alias ecclesias dominari, &c. hæc “ nec nos unquam ferre potuimus, nec vos debetis."
« Si quam
m See No. IV. VII, VIII, IX, X.
n No. VI.
It appears farther, from these letters, that any proposals or terms conceived by the archbishop, in relation to this project of union, were of a vague and general nature, and that his views terminated rather in a plan of mutual toleration, than in a scheme for effecting an entire uniformity. The scheme that seemed to his grace the most likely to succeed was, that “ the independence of every national church,
or any other, and its right to determine all matters “ that arise within itself, should be acknowleged on “ both sides; that, for points of doctrine, they “ should agree as far as possible, in all articles of
any moment (as in effect the two churches either
already did, or easily might); and, in other mat“ ters, that a difference should be allowed until God "S should bring them to an union in them also 0." It must be allowed, however, though the expression is still general, that the archbishop was for “purging “ out of the public offices of the church all such “ things as hinder a perfect communion in divine
service, so that persons coming from one church to “ the other might join in prayers, and the holy sa
crament, and the public service p.” He was persuaded, that, in the liturgy of the church of England, there was nothing but what the Roman catholics would adopt, except the single rubric relating to the eucharist; and that in the Romish liturgy there was nothing to which Protestants object, but what the more rational Romanists agree might be laid aside, and yet the public offices be not the worse, or more imperfect, for the want of it. He therefore thought it proper to make the demands already mentioned the ground-work of the project of union, at the beginning of the negotiation; not that he meant to stop here, but that, being thus far agreed, they might the more easily go farther, descend to particulars, and render their scheme more perfect by de
• See the pieces subjoined to this appendix, No. VIII.
9 See No. VIII.
The violent measures of the court of Rome against that part of the Gallican church which refused to admit the constitution Unigenitus as an ecclesiastical law, made the archbishop imagine that it would be no difficult matter to bring this opposition to an open rupture, and to engage the persons concerned in it to throw off the papal yoke, which seemed to be borne with impatience in France. The despotic bull of Clement XI. dated August 28, 1718, and which begins with the words, Pastoralis officii, was a formal act of excommunication, thundered out against all the anti-constitutionists, as the opposers of the bull Unigenitus were called; and it exasperated the doctors of the Sorbonne in the highest degree. It is to this that the archbishop alludes, when he says, in his letter to Mr. Beauvoir, dated the 23d of January, 1718", "At present he (the pope) has put them out “ of his communion. We have withdrawn ourselves “ from his; both are out of communion with him, “ and I think it is not material on which side the “ breach lies.” But the wished-for separation from the court of Rome, notwithstanding all the provocations of its pontiff, was still far off. Though, on numberless occasions, the French divines shewed very little respect for the papal authority, yet the renouncing it altogether was a step which required deep deliberation, and which, however inclined they might be to it, they could not make, if they were not seconded by the state. But from the state they were not likely to have any countenance. The regent of France was governed by the abbé Du Bois; and Du Bois was aspiring eagerly after a cardinal's cap. This circumstance (not more unimportant than many secret connexions and trivial views that daily influence the course of public events, the transactions of government, and the fate of nations) was sufficient to stop the Sorbonne and its doctors in the midst of their career; and, in effect, it contributed
r See No. X.
greatly to stop the correspondence of which I have been now giving an account, and to nip the project of union in the bud.. The correspondence between the archbishop and the two doctors of the Sorbonne had been carried on with a high degree of secrecy. This secrecy was prudent, as neither of the corresponding parties had been authorised by the civil power to negotiate an union between the two churches ; and, on Dr. Wake's part, it was partly owing to his having nobody that he could trust with what he did. He was satisfied (as he says in a letter to Mr. Beauvoir) “ that most of the high-church bishops “ and clergy would readily come into such a design; " but these (adds his grace) are not men either to be “ confided in, or made use of, by met.”
The correspondence, however, was divulged ; and the project of union engrossed the whole conversation of the city of Paris. Lord Stanhope and the earl of Stair were congratulated thereupon by some great personages in the royal palace. The duke regent himself and the abbé Du Bois, minister of foreign affairs, and Mr. Joli de Fleury, the attorney-general, gave the line at first, appeared to favor the correspondence and the project, and let things run on to certain lengths. But the Jesuits and Constitutionists sounded the alarm, and overturned the whole scheme, by spreading a report, that the cardinal de Noailles, and his friends the Jansenists, were upon the point of making a coalition with the heretics. Hereupon the regent was intimidated; and Du Bois had an op
s Dr. Wake seems to have been sensible of the impropriety of carrying on a negotiation of this nature without the approbation and countenance of government. “ I always (says he, in his " letter to Mr. Beauvoir, which the reader will find at the end of “ this Appendix, No. XI) took it for granted, that no step
should be taken toward an union, but with the knowlege, ap'“ probation, and even by the authority of civil powers. All, “ therefore, that has passed hitherto stands clear of any excep“ tion as to the civil magistrate. It is only a consultation, in “ order to find out a way how an union might be made, if a fit 66 occasion should hereafter be offered.”
See the letters subjoined, No. IX.