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pope, though they profess a warm attachment to the doctrine and communion of the church of Rome; nor are either the exhortations or threatenings of the Holy Father sufficient to banish the obstinacy of these wayward children, or to reduce them to a state of subjection and obedience.
x. The cause of the Jansenists acquired a peculiar deThe debates gree of credit and reputation, both in this and the Quenels New preceding century, by a French translation of the
New Testament, made by the learned and pious Paschasius Quenel, a priest of the oratory, and accompanied with practical annotations, adapted to excite lively impressions of religion in the minds of men. The quintessence of Jansenism was blended, in an elegant and artful manner, with these annotations, and was thus presented to the reader under the most pleasing aspect. The Jesuits were alarmed at the success of Quenel's book, and particularly at the change it had wrought in many, in favour of the theological doctrines of Jansenius; and to remove out of the way an instrument which proved so advantageous to their adversaries, they engaged that weak prince Louis XIV. to solicit the condemnation of this production at the court of Rome. Clement XI. granted the request of the French monarch, because he considered it as the request of the Jesuits; and, in the year 1713, issued out the famous bull Unigenitus, in which Quenel's New Testament was condemned, and an hundred and one propositions contained in it pronounced heretical. This bull, which is also known by the name of the. Constitution, gave a favourable turn to the affairs of the Jesuits; but it was highly detrimental to the interests of the Romish church, as many of the wiser members of that communion candidly acknowledge. For it not only confirmed the protestants in their separation, by convincing them that
g To show what a political weathercock the infallibility of the Holy Father was upon this occasion, it may not be improper to place here an anecdote which is related by Voltaire in bis Siecle de Louis XIV. vol. ij. under the article Jansenisme. The credit of the teller weighs but light in the balance of historical fame ; the anecdote however is well attested, and is as follows: "The abbe Renaudot, a learned Frenchman, happening to be at Rome the first year of the pontificate of Clement XI. went one day to see the Pope, who was food of men of letters, and was himself a learned man, and found his holiness reading father Quenel's book. On seeing Renaudot enter the apartment, the pope said, in a kind of rapture : “Here is a most excellent book! we have nobody at Rome that is capable of writing in this manner; I wish I could engage the author to reside here! And yet this same book was condemned afterward by this same poper"
Commotions in France occasioned by this bull.
the church of Rome was resolved to adhere obstinately to its ancient superstitions and corruptions; but also offended many of the Roman catholics, who had no particular attachment to the doctrines of Jansenius, and were only bent on the pursuit of truth and the advancement of piety. It must also be observed, that the controversy relating to Jansenism was much heated and augmented, instead of being mitigated or suspended, by this despotic and illjudged edict.
xi. The dissensions and tumults excited in France by this edict were violent in the highest degree. A considerable number of bishops, and a large body composed of persons eminently distinguished by their piety and erudition, both among the clergy and laity, appealed from the bull to a general council. It was more particularly opposed by the cardinal De Noailles, archbishop of Paris, who, equally unmoved by the authority of the pontiff and by the resentment and indignation of Louis XIV. made a noble stand against the despotic proceedings of the court of Rome. These defenders of the ancient doctrine and liberties of the Gallican church were persecuted by the popes, the French monarch, and the Jesuits, from whom they received an uninterrupted series of injuries and affronts. Nay, their entire ruin was aimed at by these unrelenting adversaries, and was indeed accomplished in part, since some of them were obliged to fly for refuge to their brethren in Holland; others, forced by the terrors of penal laws, and by various acts of tyranny and violence, to receive the papal edict; while a consider. able number, deprived of their places, and ruined in their fortunes, looked for subsistence and tranquillity at a greater distance from their native country. The issue of this famous contest was favourable to the bull, which was at length rendered valid by the authority of the parliament, and was registered among the laws of the state. This contributed, in some measure, to restore the public tranquillity, but it was far from diminishing the number of those who complained of the despotism of the pontiff; and the kingdom of France is still full of appellants," who reject the authority of the bull, and only wait for a favoura. ble opportunity of reviving a controversy, which is rather
Ph This was the name that was assumed by those who appealed from the bull and the court of Rome to a general council.
support the cause of Jansenism in France.
suspended than terminated, and of kindling anew a flame that is covered without being extinguished.
XII. Amidst the calamities in which the Jansenists have The circum- been involved, they have only two methods left stances that of maintaining their cause against their powerful
adversaries, and these are their writings and their miracles. The former alone have proved truly
useful to them; the latter gave them only a transitory reputation, which, being ill founded, contributed in the issue to sink their credit. The writings in which they have attacked both the Pope and the Jesuits are innumerable; and many of them are composed with such eloquence, spirit, and solidity, that they have produced a remarkable effect. The Jansenists, however, looking upon all human means as insufficient to support their cause, turned their views toward supernatural succours, and endeavoured to make it appear, that their cause was the peculiar object of the divine protection and approbation. For this purpose they persuaded the multitude, that God had endowed the bones and ashes of certain persons, who had distinguished themselves by their zeal in the cause of Jansenius, and had, at the point of death, appealed a second time from the pope to a general council, with the power of healing the most inveterate diseases. The person whose remains were principally honoured with this marvellous efficacy, was the abbe Paris, a man of family, whose natural character was dark and melancholy ; his superstition excessive beyond all credibility ; and who, by an austere abstinence from bodily nourishment, and the exercise of other inhuman branches of penitential discipline, was the voluntary cause of his own death. To the miracles which were said to be wrought at the tomb of this fanatic, the Jansenists added a great variety of visions and revelations, to which they audaciously attributed a divine origin ; for several members of the community, and more especially those who resided at Paris, pretended to be filled with the Holy Ghost; and, in consequence of this prerogative, delivered instructions, predictions, and exhortations, which, though frequently extravagant, and almost always insipid, yet moved the passions, and attracted the admiration, of the ignorant multi
i The imposture that reigned in these pretended miracles has been detected and exposed by various authors; but by none with more acuteness, perspicuity, and penetration, than by the ingenious Dr. Douglas, in his excellent Treatise on Miracles, entitled The Criterion, which was published by Millar in the year 1754.
tude. The prudence however of the court of France, put a stop to these fanatical tumults and false miracles; and, in the situation in which things are at present, the Jansenists have nothing left but their genius and their pens to maintain their cause."
XIII. We can say but very little of the Greek and eastern churches. The profound ignorance in which they live, and the despotic yoke
under which they were steder of groan, prevent their forming any plans to extend church, their limits, or making any attempts to change their state. The Russians, as we had formerly occasion to observe, assumed, under the reign of Peter the Great, a less savage and barbarous aspect than they had before that memorable period; and in this century have given some grounds to hope that they may one day be reckoned among the civilized nations. There are nevertheless immense multitudes of that rugged people, who are still attached to the brutish superstition and discipline of their ancestors; and there are several in whom the barbarous spirit of persecution still so far prevails, that, were it in their power, they would cut off the Protestants and all other sects that differ from them, by fire and sword. This appears evident from a variety of circumstances, and more especially from the book which Stephen Javorski has composed against heretics of all denominations.
The Greek Christians are said to be treated at present by their haughty masters with more clemency and indulgence than in former times. The Nestorians and Monophysites in Asia and Africa persevere in their refusal to enter into the communion of the Romish church, notwitstanding the earnest entreaties and alluring offers that have been made from time to time by the Pope's legates, to conquer their inflexible constancy. The Roman Pontiffs have frequently attempted to renew, by another sacred expedition, their former connexions with the kingdom of Abyssinia; but they have not yet been able to find out a method of escaping the vigilance of that court, which still persists in its abhorrence of popery. Nor is it at all probable that the embassy, which is now preparing at Rome for the Abys
IP k Things are greatly changed since the learned author wrote this paragraph. This storm of just resentment that has arisen against the Jesuits, and has been attended with the extinction of their order in Portugal, France, and in all the Spanish dominions, has disarmed the most formidable adversaries of Jansenism, and must consequently be considered as an event highly favourable to the Jansenists.
sinian emperor, will be attended with success. The Monophysites propagate their doctrine in Asia with zeal and assiduity, and have not long ago gained over to their communion a part of the Nestorians who inhabit the maritime coasts of India. xiv. The Lutheran church, which dates its foundation
from the year 1517, and the confession of Augsstate of the mind burg from the year 1530, celebrated in peace and
prosperity the secular return of these memorable periods in the years 1717 and 1730. It received, some years ago, a considerable accession to the number of its members, by the emigration of that multitude of Protestants which abandoned the territory of Saltzburg and the town of Berchtolsgaden, in order to breathe a free air, and to enjoy unmolested the exercise of their religion. One part of these emigrants settled in Prussia, another in Holland, and many of them transplanted themselves and their families to America, and other distant regions. This circumstance contributed greatly to propagate the doctrine, and extend the reputation, of the Lutheran church, which thus not only obtained a footing in Asia and America, but also formed several congregations of no small note in these remote parts of the world. The state of Lutheranism at home has not been so prosperous, since we learn, both from public transactions, and also from the complaints of its professors and patrons, that, in several parts of Germany, the Lutheran church has been injuriously oppressed, and unjustly deprived of several of its privileges and advantages, by the votaries of Rome.
xv. It has been scarcely possible to introduce any change Ito internal into the system of doctrine and discipline that is
received in that church, because the ancient confessions and rules that were drawn up to point out the tenets that were to be believed, and the rites and ceremonies that were to be performed, still remain in their full authority, and are considered as the sacred guardians of the Lutheran faith and worship. The method however of illustrating, enforcing, and defending the doctrines of Christianity, has undergone several changes in the Lutheran church. Toward the commencement of this century, an artless simplicity was generally observed by the ministers of that communion, and all philosophical terms and abstract reasonings were entirely laid aside, as more adapted to ob