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Title: Apologia Pro Vita Sua
Author: Newman, John Henry, 1801-1890
Language: English
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A History of his Religious Opinions.



    "Commit thy way to the Lord and trust in Him, and He will do it.
    And He will bring forth thy justice as the light, and thy
    judgment as the noon-day."









The following History of my Religious Opinions, now that it is detached
from the context in which it originally stood, requires some preliminary
explanation; and that, not only in order to introduce it generally to
the reader, but specially to make him understand, how I came to write a
whole book about myself, and about my most private thoughts and
feelings. Did I consult indeed my own impulses, I should do my best
simply to wipe out of my Volume, and consign to oblivion, every trace of
the circumstances to which it is to be ascribed; but its original title
of "Apologia" is too exactly borne out by its matter and structure, and
these again are too suggestive of correlative circumstances, and those
circumstances are of too grave a character, to allow of my indulging so
natural a wish. And therefore, though in this new Edition I have managed
to omit nearly a hundred pages of my original Volume, which I could
safely consider to be of merely ephemeral importance, I am even for that
very reason obliged, by way of making up for their absence, to prefix to
my Narrative some account of the provocation out of which it arose.

It is now more than twenty years that a vague impression to my
disadvantage has rested on the popular mind, as if my conduct towards
the Anglican Church, while I was a member of it, was inconsistent with
Christian simplicity and uprightness. An impression of this kind was
almost unavoidable under the circumstances of the case, when a man, who
had written strongly against a cause, and had collected a party round
him by virtue of such writings, gradually faltered in his opposition to
it, unsaid his words, threw his own friends into perplexity and their
proceedings into confusion, and ended by passing over to the side of
those whom he had so vigorously denounced. Sensitive then as I have ever
been of the imputations which have been so freely cast upon me, I have
never felt much impatience under them, as considering them to be a
portion of the penalty which I naturally and justly incurred by my
change of religion, even though they were to continue as long as I
lived. I left their removal to a future day, when personal feelings
would have died out, and documents would see the light, which were as
yet buried in closets or scattered through the country.

This was my state of mind, as it had been for many years, when, in the
beginning of 1864, I unexpectedly found myself publicly put upon my
defence, and furnished with an opportunity of pleading my cause before
the world, and, as it so happened, with a fair prospect of an impartial
hearing. Taken indeed by surprise, as I was, I had much reason to be
anxious how I should be able to acquit myself in so serious a matter;
however, I had long had a tacit understanding with myself, that, in the
improbable event of a challenge being formally made to me, by a person
of name, it would be my duty to meet it. That opportunity had now
occurred; it never might occur again; not to avail myself of it at once
would be virtually to give up my cause; accordingly, I took advantage of
it, and, as it has turned out, the circumstance that no time was allowed
me for any studied statements has compensated, in the equitable judgment
of the public, for such imperfections in composition as my want of
leisure involved.

       *       *       *       *       *

It was in the number for January 1864, of a magazine of wide
circulation, and in an Article upon Queen Elizabeth, that a popular
writer took occasion formally to accuse me by name of thinking so
lightly of the virtue of Veracity, as in set terms to have countenanced
and defended that neglect of it which he at the same time imputed to the
Catholic Priesthood. His words were these:--

    "Truth, for its own sake, had never been a virtue with the Roman
    clergy. Father Newman informs us that it need not, and on the
    whole ought not to be; that cunning is the weapon which heaven
    has given to the Saints wherewith to withstand the brute male
    force of the wicked world which marries and is given in
    marriage. Whether his notion be doctrinally correct or not, it
    is at least historically so."

These assertions, going far beyond the popular prejudice entertained
against me, had no foundation whatever in fact. I never had said, I
never had dreamed of saying, that truth for its own sake need not, and
on the whole ought not to be, a virtue with the Roman Clergy; or that
cunning is the weapon which heaven has given to the Saints wherewith to
withstand the wicked world. To what work of mine then could the writer
be referring? In a correspondence which ensued upon the subject between
him and myself, he rested his charge against me on a Sermon of mine,
preached, before I was a Catholic, in the pulpit of my Church at Oxford;
and he gave me to understand, that, after having done as much as this,
he was not bound, over and above such a general reference to my Sermon,
to specify the passages of it, in which the doctrine, which he imputed
to me, was contained. On my part I considered this not enough; and I
demanded of him to bring out his proof of his accusation in form and in
detail, or to confess he was unable to do so. But he persevered in his
refusal to cite any distinct passages from any writing of mine; and,
though he consented to withdraw his charge, he would not do so on the
issue of its truth or falsehood, but simply on the ground that I assured
him that I had had no intention of incurring it. This did not satisfy my
sense of justice. Formally to charge me with committing a fault is one
thing; to allow that I did not intend to commit it, is another; it is no
satisfaction to me, if a man accuses me of _this_ offence, for him to
profess that he does not accuse me _of that_; but he thought
differently. Not being able then to gain redress in the quarter, where I
had a right to ask it, I appealed to the public. I published the
correspondence in the shape of a Pamphlet, with some remarks of my own
at the end, on the course which that correspondence had taken.

This Pamphlet, which appeared in the first weeks of February, received a
reply from my accuser towards the end of March, in another Pamphlet of
48 pages, entitled, "What then does Dr. Newman mean?" in which he
professed to do that which I had called upon him to do; that is, he
brought together a number of extracts from various works of mine,
Catholic and Anglican, with the object of showing that, if I was to be
acquitted of the crime of teaching and practising deceit and dishonesty,
according to his first supposition, it was at the price of my being
considered no longer responsible for my actions; for, as he expressed
it, "I had a human reason once, no doubt, but I had gambled it away,"
and I had "worked my mind into that morbid state, in which nonsense was
the only food for which it hungered;" and that it could not be called "a
hasty or farfetched or unfounded mistake, when he concluded that I did
not care for truth for its own sake, or teach my disciples to regard it
as a virtue;" and, though "too many prefer the charge of insincerity to
that of insipience, Dr. Newman seemed not to be of that number."

He ended his Pamphlet by returning to his original imputation against
me, which he had professed to abandon. Alluding by anticipation to my
probable answer to what he was then publishing, he professed his
heartfelt embarrassment how he was to believe any thing I might say in
my exculpation, in the plain and literal sense of the words. "I am
henceforth," he said, "in doubt and fear, as much as an honest man can
be, concerning every word Dr. Newman may write. How can I tell, that I
shall not be the dupe of some cunning equivocation, of one of the three
kinds laid down as permissible by the blessed St. Alfonso da Liguori and
his pupils, even when confirmed with an oath, because 'then we do not
deceive our neighbour, but allow him to deceive himself?' ... How can I
tell, that I may not in this Pamphlet have made an accusation, of the
truth of which Dr. Newman is perfectly conscious; but that, as I, a
heretic Protestant, have no business to make it, he has a full right to
deny it?"

Even if I could have found it consistent with my duty to my own
reputation to leave such an elaborate impeachment of my moral nature
unanswered, my duty to my Brethren in the Catholic Priesthood, would
have forbidden such a course. _They_ were involved in the charges which
this writer, all along, from the original passage in the Magazine, to
the very last paragraph of the Pamphlet, had so confidently, so
pertinaciously made. In exculpating myself, it was plain I should be
pursuing no mere personal quarrel;--I was offering my humble service to
a sacred cause. I was making my protest in behalf of a large body of men
of high character, of honest and religious minds, and of sensitive
honour,--who had their place and their rights in this world, though they
were ministers of the world unseen, and who were insulted by my Accuser,
as the above extracts from him sufficiently show, not only in my person,
but directly and pointedly in their own. Accordingly, I at once set
about writing the _Apologia pro vitâ suâ_, of which the present Volume
is a New Edition; and it was a great reward to me to find, as the
controversy proceeded, such large numbers of my clerical brethren
supporting me by their sympathy in the course which I was pursuing, and,
as occasion offered, bestowing on me the formal and public expression of
their approbation. These testimonials in my behalf, so important and so
grateful to me, are, together with the Letter, sent to me with the same
purpose, from my Bishop, contained in the last pages of this Volume.

       *       *       *       *       *

This Edition differs from the first form of the Apologia as
follows:--The original work consisted of seven Parts, which were
published in series on consecutive Thursdays, between April 21 and June
2. An Appendix, in answer to specific allegations urged against me in
the Pamphlet of Accusation, appeared on June 16. Of these Parts 1 and 2,
as being for the most part directly controversial, are omitted in this
Edition, excepting certain passages in them, which are subjoined to this
Preface, as being necessary for the due explanation of the subsequent
five Parts. These, (being 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, of the Apologia,) are here
numbered as Chapters 1, 2, 3, 4, 5 respectively. Of the Appendix, about
half has been omitted, for the same reason as has led to the omission of
Parts 1 and 2. The rest of it is thrown into the shape of Notes of a
discursive character, with two new ones on Liberalism and the Lives of
the English Saints of 1843-4, and another, new in part, on
Ecclesiastical Miracles. In the body of the work, the only addition of
consequence is the letter which is found at p. 228, a copy of which has
recently come into my possession.

I should add that, since writing the Apologia last year, I have seen for
the first time Mr. Oakeley's "Notes on the Tractarian Movement." This
work remarkably corroborates the substance of my Narrative, while the
kind terms in which he speaks of me personally, call for my sincere

_May 2, 1865._

I make these extracts from the first edition of my Apologia, Part 1, pp.
3, 20-25, and Part 2, pp. 29-31 and pp. 41-51, in order to set before
the reader the drift I had in writing my Volume:--

    I cannot be sorry to have forced my Accuser to bring out in
    fulness his charges against me. It is far better that he should
    discharge his thoughts upon me in my lifetime, than after I am
    dead. Under the circumstances I am happy in having the
    opportunity of reading the worst that can be said of me by a
    writer who has taken pains with his work and is well satisfied
    with it. I account it a gain to be surveyed from without by one
    who hates the principles which are nearest to my heart, has no
    personal knowledge of me to set right his misconceptions of my
    doctrine, and who has some motive or other to be as severe with
    me as he can possibly be....

    But I really feel sad for what I am obliged now to say. I am in
    warfare with him, but I wish him no ill;--it is very difficult
    to get up resentment towards persons whom one has never seen. It
    is easy enough to be irritated with friends or foes _vis-à-vis_;
    but, though I am writing with all my heart against what he has
    said of me, I am not conscious of personal unkindness towards
    himself. I think it necessary to write as I am writing, for my
    own sake, and for the sake of the Catholic Priesthood; but I
    wish to impute nothing worse to him than that he has been
    furiously carried away by his feelings. Yet what shall I say of
    the upshot of all his talk of my economies and equivocations and
    the like? What is the precise _work_ which it is directed to
    effect? I am at war with him; but there is such a thing as
    legitimate warfare: war has its laws; there are things which may
    fairly be done, and things which may not be done. I say it with
    shame and with stern sorrow;--he has attempted a great
    transgression; he has attempted (as I may call it) to _poison
    the wells_. I will quote him and explain what I mean.... He

    "I am henceforth in doubt and fear, as much as any honest man
    can be, _concerning every word_ Dr. Newman may write. _How can I
    tell that I shall not be the dupe of some cunning equivocation_,
    of one of the three kinds laid down as permissible by the
    blessed Alfonso da Liguori and his pupils, even when confirmed
    by an oath, because 'then we do not deceive our neighbour, but
    allow him to deceive himself?' ... It is admissible, therefore,
    to use words and sentences which have a double signification,
    and leave the hapless hearer to take which of them he may
    choose. _What proof have I, then, that by 'mean it? I never said
    it!' Dr. Newman does not signify_, I did not say it, but I did
    mean it?"--Pp. 44, 45.

    Now these insinuations and questions shall be answered in their
    proper places; here I will but say that I scorn and detest
    lying, and quibbling, and double-tongued practice, and slyness,
    and cunning, and smoothness, and cant, and pretence, quite as
    much as any Protestants hate them; and I pray to be kept from
    the snare of them. But all this is just now by the bye; my
    present subject is my Accuser; what I insist upon here is this
    unmanly attempt of his, in his concluding pages, to cut the
    ground from under my feet;--to poison by anticipation the public
    mind against me, John Henry Newman, and to infuse into the
    imaginations of my readers, suspicion and mistrust of everything
    that I may say in reply to him. This I call _poisoning the

    "I am henceforth in _doubt and fear_," he says, "as much as any
    _honest_ man can be, _concerning every word_ Dr. Newman may
    write. _How can I tell that I shall not be the dupe of some
    cunning equivocation?_" ...

    Well, I can only say, that, if his taunt is to take effect, I am
    but wasting my time in saying a word in answer to his calumnies;
    and this is precisely what he knows and intends to be its fruit.
    I can hardly get myself to protest against a method of
    controversy so base and cruel, lest in doing so, I should be
    violating my self-respect and self-possession; but most base and
    most cruel it is. We all know how our imagination runs away with
    us, how suddenly and at what a pace;--the saying, "Cæsar's wife
    should not be suspected," is an instance of what I mean. The
    habitual prejudice, the humour of the moment, is the
    turning-point which leads us to read a defence in a good sense
    or a bad. We interpret it by our antecedent impressions.

    The very same sentiments, according as our jealousy is or is not
    awake, or our aversion stimulated, are tokens of truth or of
    dissimulation and pretence. There is a story of a sane person
    being by mistake shut up in the wards of a Lunatic Asylum, and
    that, when he pleaded his cause to some strangers visiting the
    establishment, the only remark he elicited in answer was, "How
    naturally he talks! you would think he was in his senses."
    Controversies should be decided by the reason; is it legitimate
    warfare to appeal to the misgivings of the public mind and to
    its dislikings? Any how, if my accuser is able thus to practise
    upon my readers, the more I succeed, the less will be my
    success. If I am natural, he will tell them "Ars est celare
    artem;" if I am convincing, he will suggest that I am an able
    logician; if I show warmth, I am acting the indignant innocent;
    if I am calm, I am thereby detected as a smooth hypocrite; if I
    clear up difficulties, I am too plausible and perfect to be
    true. The more triumphant are my statements, the more certain
    will be my defeat.

    So will it be if my Accuser succeeds in his man[oe]uvre; but I
    do not for an instant believe that he will. Whatever judgment my
    readers may eventually form of me from these pages, I am
    confident that they will believe me in what I shall say in the
    course of them. I have no misgiving at all, that they will be
    ungenerous or harsh towards a man who has been so long before
    the eyes of the world; who has so many to speak of him from
    personal knowledge; whose natural impulse it has ever been to
    speak out; who has ever spoken too much rather than too little;
    who would have saved himself many a scrape, if he had been wise
    enough to hold his tongue; who has ever been fair to the
    doctrines and arguments of his opponents; who has never slurred
    over facts and reasonings which told against himself; who has
    never given his name or authority to proofs which he thought
    unsound, or to testimony which he did not think at least
    plausible; who has never shrunk from confessing a fault when he
    felt that he had committed one; who has ever consulted for
    others more than for himself; who has given up much that he
    loved and prized and could have retained, but that he loved
    honesty better than name, and Truth better than dear friends....

       *       *       *       *       *

    What then shall be the special imputation, against which I shall
    throw myself in these pages, out of the thousand and one which
    my Accuser directs upon me? I mean to confine myself to one, for
    there is only one about which I much care,--the charge of
    Untruthfulness. He may cast upon me as many other imputations as
    he pleases, and they may stick on me, as long as they can, in
    the course of nature. They will fall to the ground in their

    And indeed I think the same of the charge of Untruthfulness, and
    select it from the rest, not because it is more formidable but
    because it is more serious. Like the rest, it may disfigure me
    for a time, but it will not stain: Archbishop Whately used to
    say, "Throw dirt enough, and some will stick;" well, will stick,
    but not, will stain. I think he used to mean "stain," and I do
    not agree with him. Some dirt sticks longer than other dirt; but
    no dirt is immortal. According to the old saying, Prævalebit
    Veritas. There are virtues indeed, which the world is not fitted
    to judge of or to uphold, such as faith, hope, and charity: but
    it can judge about Truthfulness; it can judge about the natural
    virtues, and Truthfulness is one of them. Natural virtues may
    also become supernatural; Truthfulness is such; but that does
    not withdraw it from the jurisdiction of mankind at large. It
    may be more difficult in this or that particular case for men to
    take cognizance of it, as it may be difficult for the Court of
    Queen's Bench at Westminster to try a case fairly which took
    place in Hindostan: but that is a question of capacity, not of
    right. Mankind has the right to judge of Truthfulness in a
    Catholic, as in the case of a Protestant, of an Italian, or of a
    Chinese. I have never doubted, that in my hour, in God's hour,
    my avenger will appear, and the world will acquit me of
    untruthfulness, even though it be not while I live.

    Still more confident am I of such eventual acquittal, seeing
    that my judges are my own countrymen. I consider, indeed,
    Englishmen the most suspicious and touchy of mankind; I think
    them unreasonable, and unjust in their seasons of excitement;
    but I had rather be an Englishman, (as in fact I am,) than
    belong to any other race under heaven. They are as generous, as
    they are hasty and burly; and their repentance for their
    injustice is greater than their sin.

    For twenty years and more I have borne an imputation, of which I
    am at least as sensitive, who am the object of it, as they can
    be, who are only the judges. I have not set myself to remove it,
    first, because I never have had an opening to speak, and, next,
    because I never saw in them the disposition to hear. I have
    wished to appeal from Philip drunk to Philip sober. When shall I
    pronounce him to be himself again? If I may judge from the tone
    of the public press, which represents the public voice, I have
    great reason to take heart at this time. I have been treated by
    contemporary critics in this controversy with great fairness and
    gentleness, and I am grateful to them for it. However, the
    decision of the time and mode of my defence has been taken out
    of my hands; and I am thankful that it has been so. I am bound
    now as a duty to myself, to the Catholic cause, to the Catholic
    Priesthood, to give account of myself without any delay, when I
    am so rudely and circumstantially charged with Untruthfulness. I
    accept the challenge; I shall do my best to meet it, and I shall
    be content when I have done so.

       *       *       *       *       *

    It is not my present accuser alone who entertains, and has
    entertained, so dishonourable an opinion of me and of my
    writings. It is the impression of large classes of men; the
    impression twenty years ago and the impression now. There has
    been a general feeling that I was for years where I had no right
    to be; that I was a "Romanist" in Protestant livery and service;
    that I was doing the work of a hostile Church in the bosom of
    the English Establishment, and knew it, or ought to have known
    it. There was no need of arguing about particular passages in my
    writings, when the fact was so patent, as men thought it to be.

    First it was certain, and I could not myself deny it, that I
    scouted the name "Protestant." It was certain again, that many
    of the doctrines which I professed were popularly and generally
    known as badges of the Roman Church, as distinguished from the
    faith of the Reformation. Next, how could I have come by them?
    Evidently, I had certain friends and advisers who did not
    appear; there was some underground communication between
    Stonyhurst or Oscott and my rooms at Oriel. Beyond a doubt, I
    was advocating certain doctrines, not by accident, but on an
    understanding with ecclesiastics of the old religion. Then men
    went further, and said that I had actually been received into
    that religion, and withal had leave given me to profess myself a
    Protestant still. Others went even further, and gave it out to
    the world, as a matter of fact, of which they themselves had the
    proof in their hands, that I was actually a Jesuit. And when the
    opinions which I advocated spread, and younger men went further
    than I, the feeling against me waxed stronger and took a wider

    And now indignation arose at the knavery of a conspiracy such as
    this:--and it became of course all the greater in consequence of
    its being the received belief of the public at large, that craft
    and intrigue, such as they fancied they beheld with their eyes,
    were the very instruments to which the Catholic Church has in
    these last centuries been indebted for her maintenance and

    There was another circumstance still, which increased the
    irritation and aversion felt by the large classes, of whom I
    have been speaking, against the preachers of doctrines, so new
    to them and so unpalatable; and that was, that they developed
    them in so measured a way. If they were inspired by Roman
    theologians, (and this was taken for granted,) why did they not
    speak out at once? Why did they keep the world in such suspense
    and anxiety as to what was coming next, and what was to be the
    upshot of the whole? Why this reticence, and half-speaking, and
    apparent indecision? It was plain that the plan of operations
    had been carefully mapped out from the first, and that these men
    were cautiously advancing towards its accomplishment, as far as
    was safe at the moment; that their aim and their hope was to
    carry off a large body with them of the young and the ignorant;
    that they meant gradually to leaven the minds of the rising
    generation, and to open the gates of that city, of which they
    were the sworn defenders, to the enemy who lay in ambush outside
    of it. And when in spite of the many protestations of the party
    to the contrary, there was at length an actual movement among
    their disciples, and one went over to Rome, and then another,
    the worst anticipations and the worst judgments which had been
    formed of them received their justification. And, lastly, when
    men first had said of me, "You will see, _he_ will go, he is
    only biding his time, he is waiting the word of command from
    Rome," and, when after all, after my arguments and denunciations
    of former years, at length I did leave the Anglican Church for
    the Roman, then they said to each other, "It is just as we said:
    we knew it would be so."

    This was the state of mind of masses of men twenty years ago,
    who took no more than an external and common sense view of what
    was going on. And partly the tradition, partly the effect of
    that feeling, remains to the present time. Certainly I consider
    that, in my own case, it is the great obstacle in the way of my
    being favourably heard, as at present, when I have to make my
    defence. Not only am I now a member of a most un-English
    communion, whose great aim is considered to be the extinction of
    Protestantism and the Protestant Church, and whose means of
    attack are popularly supposed to be unscrupulous cunning and
    deceit, but how came I originally to have any relations with the
    Church of Rome at all? did I, or my opinions, drop from the sky?
    how came I, in Oxford, _in gremio Universitatis_, to present
    myself to the eyes of men in that full blown investiture of
    Popery? How could I dare, how could I have the conscience, with
    warnings, with prophecies, with accusations against me, to
    persevere in a path which steadily advanced towards, which ended
    in, the religion of Rome? And how am I now to be trusted, when
    long ago I was trusted, and was found wanting?

    It is this which is the strength of the case of my Accuser
    against me;--not the articles of impeachment which he has framed
    from my writings, and which I shall easily crumble into dust,
    but the bias of the court. It is the state of the atmosphere; it
    is the vibration all around, which will echo his bold assertion
    of my dishonesty; it is that prepossession against me, which
    takes it for granted that, when my reasoning is convincing it is
    only ingenious, and that when my statements are unanswerable,
    there is always something put out of sight or hidden in my
    sleeve; it is that plausible, but cruel conclusion to which men
    are apt to jump, that when much is imputed, much must be true,
    and that it is more likely that one should be to blame, than
    that many should be mistaken in blaming him;--these are the real
    foes which I have to fight, and the auxiliaries to whom my
    Accuser makes his advances.

    Well, I must break through this barrier of prejudice against me
    if I can; and I think I shall be able to do so. When first I
    read the Pamphlet of Accusation, I almost despaired of meeting
    effectively such a heap of misrepresentations and such a
    vehemence of animosity. What was the good of answering first one
    point, and then another, and going through the whole circle of
    its abuse; when my answer to the first point would be forgotten,
    as soon as I got to the second? What was the use of bringing out
    half a hundred separate principles or views for the refutation
    of the separate counts in the Indictment, when rejoinders of
    this sort would but confuse and torment the reader by their
    number and their diversity? What hope was there of condensing
    into a pamphlet of a readable length, matter which ought freely
    to expand itself into half a dozen volumes? What means was
    there, except the expenditure of interminable pages, to set
    right even one of that series of "single passing hints," to use
    my Assailant's own language, which, "as with his finger tip he
    had delivered" against me?

    All those separate charges had their force in being
    illustrations of one and the same great imputation. He had
    already a positive idea to illuminate his whole matter, and to
    stamp it with a force, and to quicken it with an interpretation.
    He called me a _liar_,--a simple, a broad, an intelligible, to
    the English public a plausible arraignment; but for me, to
    answer in detail charge one by reason one, and charge two by
    reason two, and charge three by reason three, and so on through
    the whole string both of accusations and replies, each of which
    was to be independent of the rest, this would be certainly
    labour lost as regards any effective result. What I needed was a
    corresponding antagonist unity in my defence, and where was that
    to be found? We see, in the case of commentators on the
    prophecies of Scripture, an exemplification of the principle on
    which I am insisting; viz. how much more powerful even a false
    interpretation of the sacred text is than none at all;--how a
    certain key to the visions of the Apocalypse, for instance, may
    cling to the mind (I have found it so in the case of my own),
    because the view, which it opens on us, is positive and
    objective, in spite of the fullest demonstration that it really
    has no claim upon our reception. The reader says, "What else can
    the prophecy mean?" just as my Accuser asks, "What, then, does
    Dr. Newman mean?" ... I reflected, and I saw a way out of my

    Yes, I said to myself, his very question is about my _meaning_;
    "What does Dr. Newman mean?" It pointed in the very same
    direction as that into which my musings had turned me already.
    He asks what I _mean_; not about my words, not about my
    arguments, not about my actions, as his ultimate point, but
    about that living intelligence, by which I write, and argue, and
    act. He asks about my Mind and its Beliefs and its sentiments;
    and he shall be answered;--not for his own sake, but for mine,
    for the sake of the Religion which I profess, and of the
    Priesthood in which I am unworthily included, and of my friends
    and of my foes, and of that general public which consists of
    neither one nor the other, but of well-wishers, lovers of fair
    play, sceptical cross-questioners, interested inquirers, curious
    lookers-on, and simple strangers, unconcerned yet not careless
    about the issue,--for the sake of all these he shall be

    My perplexity had not lasted half an hour. I recognized what I
    had to do, though I shrank from both the task and the exposure
    which it would entail. I must, I said, give the true key to my
    whole life; I must show what I am, that it may be seen what I am
    not, and that the phantom may be extinguished which gibbers
    instead of me. I wish to be known as a living man, and not as a
    scarecrow which is dressed up in my clothes. False ideas may be
    refuted indeed by argument, but by true ideas alone are they
    expelled. I will vanquish, not my Accuser, but my judges. I will
    indeed answer his charges and criticisms on me one by one[1],
    lest any one should say that they are unanswerable, but such a
    work shall not be the scope nor the substance of my reply. I
    will draw out, as far as may be, the history of my mind; I will
    state the point at which I began, in what external suggestion or
    accident each opinion had its rise, how far and how they
    developed from within, how they grew, were modified, were
    combined, were in collision with each other, and were changed;
    again how I conducted myself towards them, and how, and how far,
    and for how long a time, I thought I could hold them
    consistently with the ecclesiastical engagements which I had
    made and with the position which I held. I must show,--what is
    the very truth,--that the doctrines which I held, and have held
    for so many years, have been taught me (speaking humanly) partly
    by the suggestions of Protestant friends, partly by the teaching
    of books, and partly by the action of my own mind: and thus I
    shall account for that phenomenon which to so many seems so
    wonderful, that I should have left "my kindred and my father's
    house" for a Church from which once I turned away with
    dread;--so wonderful to them! as if forsooth a Religion which
    has flourished through so many ages, among so many nations, amid
    such varieties of social life, in such contrary classes and
    conditions of men, and after so many revolutions, political and
    civil, could not subdue the reason and overcome the heart,
    without the aid of fraud in the process and the sophistries of
    the schools.

    [1] This was done in the Appendix, of which the more important
    parts are preserved in the Notes.

       *       *       *       *       *

    What I had proposed to myself in the course of half-an-hour, I
    determined on at the end of ten days. However, I have many
    difficulties in fulfilling my design. How am I to say all that
    has to be said in a reasonable compass? And then as to the
    materials of my narrative; I have no autobiographical notes to
    consult, no written explanations of particular treatises or of
    tracts which at the time gave offence, hardly any minutes of
    definite transactions or conversations, and few contemporary
    memoranda, I fear, of the feelings or motives under which, from
    time to time I acted. I have an abundance of letters from
    friends with some copies or drafts of my answers to them, but
    they are for the most part unsorted; and, till this process has
    taken place, they are even too numerous and various to be
    available at a moment for my purpose. Then, as to the volumes
    which I have published, they would in many ways serve me, were I
    well up in them: but though I took great pains in their
    composition, I have thought little about them, when they were
    once out of my hands, and for the most part the last time I read
    them has been when I revised their last proof sheets.

    Under these circumstances my sketch will of course be
    incomplete. I now for the first time contemplate my course as a
    whole; it is a first essay, but it will contain, I trust, no
    serious or substantial mistake, and so far will answer the
    purpose for which I write it. I purpose to set nothing down in
    it as certain, of which I have not a clear memory, or some
    written memorial, or the corroboration of some friend. There are
    witnesses enough up and down the country to verify, or correct,
    or complete it; and letters moreover of my own in abundance,
    unless they have been destroyed.

    Moreover, I mean to be simply personal and historical: I am not
    expounding Catholic doctrine, I am doing no more than explaining
    myself, and my opinions and actions. I wish, as far as I am
    able, simply to state facts, whether they are ultimately
    determined to be for me or against me. Of course there will be
    room enough for contrariety of judgment among my readers, as to
    the necessity, or appositeness, or value, or good taste, or
    religious prudence, of the details which I shall introduce. I
    may be accused of laying stress on little things, of being
    beside the mark, of going into impertinent or ridiculous
    details, of sounding my own praise, of giving scandal; but this
    is a case above all others, in which I am bound to follow my own
    lights and to speak out my own heart. It is not at all pleasant
    for me to be egotistical; nor to be criticized for being so. It
    is not pleasant to reveal to high and low, young and old, what
    has gone on within me from my early years. It is not pleasant to
    be giving to every shallow or flippant disputant the advantage
    over me of knowing my most private thoughts, I might even say
    the intercourse between myself and my Maker. But I do not like
    to be called to my face a liar and a knave; nor should I be
    doing my duty to my faith or to my name, if I were to suffer it.
    I know I have done nothing to deserve such an insult, and if I
    prove this, as I hope to do, I must not care for such incidental
    annoyances as are involved in the process.



History of my Religious Opinions up to 1833


History of my Religious Opinions from 1833 to 1839


History of my Religious Opinions from 1839 to 1841


History of my Religious Opinions from 1841 to 1845


Position of my Mind since 1845


Note A. On page  14. Liberalism

     B. On page  23. Ecclesiastical Miracles

     C. On page 153. Sermon on Wisdom and Innocence

     D. On page 213. Series of Saints' Lives of 1843-4

     E. On page 227. Anglican Church

     F. On page 269. The Economy

     G. On page 279. Lying and Equivocation


1. Chronological List of Letters and Papers quoted in this Narrative

2. List of the Author's Works

3. Letter to him from his Diocesan

4. Addresses from bodies of Clergy and Laity


Note 1, on page 12. Correspondence with Archbishop Whately in 1834

2, on page 90. Extract of a Letter from the Rev. E. Smedley in 1828

3, on page 185. Extract of a Letter of the Rev. Francis Faber about 1849

4, on pages 194-196. The late Very Rev. Dr. Russell

5, on page 232. Extract of a Letter from the Rev. John Keble in 1844

6, on page 237. Extract from the _Times_ concerning the Author's visit
to Oxford in 1878

7, on page 302. The oil of St. Walburga

8, on page 323. Boniface of Canterbury




It may easily be conceived how great a trial it is to me to write the
following history of myself; but I must not shrink from the task. The
words, "Secretum meum mihi," keep ringing in my ears; but as men draw
towards their end, they care less for disclosures. Nor is it the least
part of my trial, to anticipate that, upon first reading what I have
written, my friends may consider much in it irrelevant to my purpose;
yet I cannot help thinking that, viewed as a whole, it will effect what
I propose to myself in giving it to the public.

       *       *       *       *       *

I was brought up from a child to take great delight in reading the
Bible; but I had no formed religious convictions till I was fifteen. Of
course I had a perfect knowledge of my Catechism.

After I was grown up, I put on paper my recollections of the thoughts
and feelings on religious subjects, which I had at the time that I was a
child and a boy,--such as had remained on my mind with sufficient
prominence to make me then consider them worth recording. Out of these,
written in the Long Vacation of 1820, and transcribed with additions in
1823, I select two, which are at once the most definite among them, and
also have a bearing on my later convictions.

1. "I used to wish the Arabian Tales were true: my imagination ran on
unknown influences, on magical powers, and talismans.... I thought life
might be a dream, or I an Angel, and all this world a deception, my
fellow-angels by a playful device concealing themselves from me, and
deceiving me with the semblance of a material world."

Again: "Reading in the Spring of 1816 a sentence from [Dr. Watts's]
'Remnants of Time,' entitled 'the Saints unknown to the world,' to the
effect, that 'there is nothing in their figure or countenance to
distinguish them,' &c., &c., I supposed he spoke of Angels who lived in
the world, as it were disguised."

2. The other remark is this: "I was very superstitious, and for some
time previous to my conversion" [when I was fifteen] "used constantly to
cross myself on going into the dark."

Of course I must have got this practice from some external source or
other; but I can make no sort of conjecture whence; and certainly no one
had ever spoken to me on the subject of the Catholic religion, which I
only knew by name. The French master was an _émigré_ Priest, but he was
simply made a butt, as French masters too commonly were in that day, and
spoke English very imperfectly. There was a Catholic family in the
village, old maiden ladies we used to think; but I knew nothing about
them. I have of late years heard that there were one or two Catholic
boys in the school; but either we were carefully kept from knowing this,
or the knowledge of it made simply no impression on our minds. My
brother will bear witness how free the school was from Catholic ideas.

I had once been into Warwick Street Chapel, with my father, who, I
believe, wanted to hear some piece of music; all that I bore away from
it was the recollection of a pulpit and a preacher, and a boy swinging a

When I was at Littlemore, I was looking over old copy-books of my school
days, and I found among them my first Latin verse-book; and in the first
page of it there was a device which almost took my breath away with
surprise. I have the book before me now, and have just been showing it
to others. I have written in the first page, in my school-boy hand,
"John. H. Newman, February 11th, 1811, Verse Book;" then follow my first
Verses. Between "Verse" and "Book" I have drawn the figure of a solid
cross upright, and next to it is, what may indeed be meant for a
necklace, but what I cannot make out to be any thing else than a set of
beads suspended, with a little cross attached. At this time I was not
quite ten years old. I suppose I got these ideas from some romance, Mrs.
Radcliffe's or Miss Porter's; or from some religious picture; but the
strange thing is, how, among the thousand objects which meet a boy's
eyes, these in particular should so have fixed themselves in my mind,
that I made them thus practically my own. I am certain there was nothing
in the churches I attended, or the prayer books I read, to suggest them.
It must be recollected that Anglican churches and prayer books were not
decorated in those days as I believe they are now.

When I was fourteen, I read Paine's Tracts against the Old Testament,
and found pleasure in thinking of the objections which were contained in
them. Also, I read some of Hume's Essays; and perhaps that on Miracles.
So at least I gave my Father to understand; but perhaps it was a brag.
Also, I recollect copying out some French verses, perhaps Voltaire's, in
denial of the immortality of the soul, and saying to myself something
like "How dreadful, but how plausible!"

When I was fifteen, (in the autumn of 1816,) a great change of thought
took place in me. I fell under the influences of a definite Creed, and
received into my intellect impressions of dogma, which, through God's
mercy, have never been effaced or obscured. Above and beyond the
conversations and sermons of the excellent man, long dead, the Rev.
Walter Mayers, of Pembroke College, Oxford, who was the human means of
this beginning of divine faith in me, was the effect of the books which
he put into my hands, all of the school of Calvin. One of the first
books I read was a work of Romaine's; I neither recollect the title nor
the contents, except one doctrine, which of course I do not include
among those which I believe to have come from a divine source, viz. the
doctrine of final perseverance. I received it at once, and believed that
the inward conversion of which I was conscious, (and of which I still am
more certain than that I have hands and feet,) would last into the next
life, and that I was elected to eternal glory. I have no consciousness
that this belief had any tendency whatever to lead me to be careless
about pleasing God. I retained it till the age of twenty-one, when it
gradually faded away; but I believe that it had some influence on my
opinions, in the direction of those childish imaginations which I have
already mentioned, viz. in isolating me from the objects which
surrounded me, in confirming me in my mistrust of the reality of
material phenomena, and making me rest in the thought of two and two
only absolute and luminously self-evident beings, myself and my
Creator;--for while I considered myself predestined to salvation, my
mind did not dwell upon others, as fancying them simply passed over, not
predestined to eternal death. I only thought of the mercy to myself.

The detestable doctrine last mentioned is simply denied and abjured,
unless my memory strangely deceives me, by the writer who made a deeper
impression on my mind than any other, and to whom (humanly speaking) I
almost owe my soul,--Thomas Scott of Aston Sandford. I so admired and
delighted in his writings, that, when I was an under-graduate, I thought
of making a visit to his Parsonage, in order to see a man whom I so
deeply revered. I hardly think I could have given up the idea of this
expedition, even after I had taken my degree; for the news of his death
in 1821 came upon me as a disappointment as well as a sorrow. I hung
upon the lips of Daniel Wilson, afterwards Bishop of Calcutta, as in two
sermons at St. John's Chapel he gave the history of Scott's life and
death. I had been possessed of his "Force of Truth" and Essays from a
boy; his Commentary I bought when I was an under-graduate.

What, I suppose, will strike any reader of Scott's history and writings,
is his bold unworldliness and vigorous independence of mind. He followed
truth wherever it led him, beginning with Unitarianism, and ending in a
zealous faith in the Holy Trinity. It was he who first planted deep in
my mind that fundamental truth of religion. With the assistance of
Scott's Essays, and the admirable work of Jones of Nayland, I made a
collection of Scripture texts in proof of the doctrine, with remarks (I
think) of my own upon them, before I was sixteen; and a few months later
I drew up a series of texts in support of each verse of the Athanasian
Creed. These papers I have still.

Besides his unworldliness, what I also admired in Scott was his resolute
opposition to Antinomianism, and the minutely practical character of his
writings. They show him to be a true Englishman, and I deeply felt his
influence; and for years I used almost as proverbs what I considered to
be the scope and issue of his doctrine, "Holiness rather than peace,"
and "Growth the only evidence of life."

Calvinists make a sharp separation between the elect and the world;
there is much in this that is cognate or parallel to the Catholic
doctrine; but they go on to say, as I understand them, very differently
from Catholicism,--that the converted and the unconverted can be
discriminated by man, that the justified are conscious of their state of
justification, and that the regenerate cannot fall away. Catholics on
the other hand shade and soften the awful antagonism between good and
evil, which is one of their dogmas, by holding that there are different
degrees of justification, that there is a great difference in point of
gravity between sin and sin, that there is the possibility and the
danger of falling away, and that there is no certain knowledge given to
any one that he is simply in a state of grace, and much less that he is
to persevere to the end:--of the Calvinistic tenets the only one which
took root in my mind was the fact of heaven and hell, divine favour and
divine wrath, of the justified and the unjustified. The notion that the
regenerate and the justified were one and the same, and that the
regenerate, as such, had the gift of perseverance, remained with me not
many years, as I have said already.

This main Catholic doctrine of the warfare between the city of God and
the powers of darkness was also deeply impressed upon my mind by a work
of a character very opposite to Calvinism, Law's "Serious Call."

From this time I have held with a full inward assent and belief the
doctrine of eternal punishment, as delivered by our Lord Himself, in as
true a sense as I hold that of eternal happiness; though I have tried in
various ways to make that truth less terrible to the imagination.

Now I come to two other works, which produced a deep impression on me in
the same Autumn of 1816, when I was fifteen years old, each contrary to
each, and planting in me the seeds of an intellectual inconsistency
which disabled me for a long course of years. I read Joseph Milner's
Church History, and was nothing short of enamoured of the long extracts
from St. Augustine, St. Ambrose, and the other Fathers which I found
there. I read them as being the religion of the primitive Christians:
but simultaneously with Milner I read Newton on the Prophecies, and in
consequence became most firmly convinced that the Pope was the
Antichrist predicted by Daniel, St. Paul, and St. John. My imagination
was stained by the effects of this doctrine up to the year 1843; it had
been obliterated from my reason and judgment at an earlier date; but the
thought remained upon me as a sort of false conscience. Hence came that
conflict of mind, which so many have felt besides myself;--leading some
men to make a compromise between two ideas, so inconsistent with each
other,--driving others to beat out the one idea or the other from their
minds,--and ending in my own case, after many years of intellectual
unrest, in the gradual decay and extinction of one of them,--I do not
say in its violent death, for why should I not have murdered it sooner,
if I murdered it at all?

I am obliged to mention, though I do it with great reluctance, another
deep imagination, which at this time, the autumn of 1816, took
possession of me,--there can be no mistake about the fact; viz. that it
would be the will of God that I should lead a single life. This
anticipation, which has held its ground almost continuously ever
since,--with the break of a month now and a month then, up to 1829, and,
after that date, without any break at all,--was more or less connected
in my mind with the notion, that my calling in life would require such a
sacrifice as celibacy involved; as, for instance, missionary work among
the heathen, to which I had a great drawing for some years. It also
strengthened my feeling of separation from the visible world, of which I
have spoken above.

In 1822 I came under very different influences from those to which I had
hitherto been subjected. At that time, Mr. Whately, as he was then,
afterwards Archbishop of Dublin, for the few months he remained in
Oxford, which he was leaving for good, showed great kindness to me. He
renewed it in 1825, when he became Principal of Alban Hall, making me
his Vice-Principal and Tutor. Of Dr. Whately I will speak presently: for
from 1822 to 1825 I saw most of the present Provost of Oriel, Dr.
Hawkins, at that time Vicar of St. Mary's; and, when I took orders in
1824 and had a curacy in Oxford, then, during the Long Vacations, I was
especially thrown into his company. I can say with a full heart that I
love him, and have never ceased to love him; and I thus preface what
otherwise might sound rude, that in the course of the many years in
which we were together afterwards, he provoked me very much from time to
time, though I am perfectly certain that I have provoked him a great
deal more. Moreover, in me such provocation was unbecoming, both because
he was the Head of my College, and because, in the first years that I
knew him, he had been in many ways of great service to my mind.

He was the first who taught me to weigh my words, and to be cautious in
my statements. He led me to that mode of limiting and clearing my sense
in discussion and in controversy, and of distinguishing between cognate
ideas, and of obviating mistakes by anticipation, which to my surprise
has been since considered, even in quarters friendly to me, to savour of
the polemics of Rome. He is a man of most exact mind himself, and he
used to snub me severely, on reading, as he was kind enough to do, the
first Sermons that I wrote, and other compositions which I was engaged

Then as to doctrine, he was the means of great additions to my belief.
As I have noticed elsewhere, he gave me the "Treatise on Apostolical
Preaching," by Sumner, afterwards Archbishop of Canterbury, from which I
was led to give up my remaining Calvinism, and to receive the doctrine
of Baptismal Regeneration. In many other ways too he was of use to me,
on subjects semi-religious and semi-scholastic.

It was Dr. Hawkins too who taught me to anticipate that, before many
years were over, there would be an attack made upon the books and the
canon of Scripture, I was brought to the same belief by the conversation
of Mr. Blanco White, who also led me to have freer views on the subject
of inspiration than were usual in the Church of England at the time.

There is one other principle, which I gained from Dr. Hawkins, more
directly bearing upon Catholicism, than any that I have mentioned; and
that is the doctrine of Tradition. When I was an Under-graduate, I heard
him preach in the University Pulpit his celebrated sermon on the
subject, and recollect how long it appeared to me, though he was at that
time a very striking preacher; but, when I read it and studied it as his
gift, it made a most serious impression upon me. He does not go one
step, I think, beyond the high Anglican doctrine, nay he does not reach
it; but he does his work thoroughly, and his view was in him original,
and his subject was a novel one at the time. He lays down a proposition,
self-evident as soon as stated, to those who have at all examined the
structure of Scripture, viz. that the sacred text was never intended to
teach doctrine, but only to prove it, and that, if we would learn
doctrine, we must have recourse to the formularies of the Church; for
instance to the Catechism, and to the Creeds. He considers, that, after
learning from them the doctrines of Christianity, the inquirer must
verify them by Scripture. This view, most true in its outline, most
fruitful in its consequences, opened upon me a large field of thought.
Dr. Whately held it too. One of its effects was to strike at the root of
the principle on which the Bible Society was set up. I belonged to its
Oxford Association; it became a matter of time when I should withdraw my
name from its subscription-list, though I did not do so at once.

It is with pleasure that I pay here a tribute to the memory of the Rev.
William James, then Fellow of Oriel; who, about the year 1823, taught me
the doctrine of Apostolical Succession, in the course of a walk, I
think, round Christ Church meadow; I recollect being somewhat impatient
of the subject at the time.

It was at about this date, I suppose, that I read Bishop Butler's
Analogy; the study of which has been to so many, as it was to me, an era
in their religious opinions. Its inculcation of a visible Church, the
oracle of truth and a pattern of sanctity, of the duties of external
religion, and of the historical character of Revelation, are
characteristics of this great work which strike the reader at once; for
myself, if I may attempt to determine what I most gained from it, it lay
in two points, which I shall have an opportunity of dwelling on in the
sequel; they are the underlying principles of a great portion of my
teaching. First, the very idea of an analogy between the separate works
of God leads to the conclusion that the system which is of less
importance is economically or sacramentally connected with the more
momentous system[2], and of this conclusion the theory, to which I was
inclined as a boy, viz. the unreality of material phenomena, is an
ultimate resolution. At this time I did not make the distinction between
matter itself and its phenomena, which is so necessary and so obvious in
discussing the subject. Secondly, Butler's doctrine that Probability is
the guide of life, led me, at least under the teaching to which a few
years later I was introduced, to the question of the logical cogency of
Faith, on which I have written so much. Thus to Butler I trace those two
principles of my teaching, which have led to a charge against me both of
fancifulness and of scepticism.

[2] It is significant that Butler begins his work with a quotation from

And now as to Dr. Whately. I owe him a great deal. He was a man of
generous and warm heart. He was particularly loyal to his friends, and
to use the common phrase, "all his geese were swans." While I was still
awkward and timid in 1822, he took me by the hand, and acted towards me
the part of a gentle and encouraging instructor. He, emphatically,
opened my mind, and taught me to think and to use my reason. After being
first noticed by him in 1822, I became very intimate with him in 1825,
when I was his Vice-Principal at Alban Hall. I gave up that office in
1826, when I became Tutor of my College, and his hold upon me gradually
relaxed. He had done his work towards me or nearly so, when he had
taught me to see with my own eyes and to walk with my own feet. Not that
I had not a good deal to learn from others still, but I influenced them
as well as they me, and co-operated rather than merely concurred with
them. As to Dr. Whately, his mind was too different from mine for us to
remain long on one line. I recollect how dissatisfied he was with an
Article of mine in the London Review, which Blanco White,
good-humouredly, only called Platonic. When I was diverging from him in
opinion (which he did not like), I thought of dedicating my first book
to him, in words to the effect that he had not only taught me to think,
but to think for myself. He left Oxford in 1831; after that, as far as I
can recollect, I never saw him but twice,--when he visited the
University; once in the street in 1834, once in a room in 1838. From the
time that he left, I have always felt a real affection for what I must
call his memory; for, at least from the year 1834, he made himself dead
to me. He had practically indeed given me up from the time that he
became Archbishop in 1831; but in 1834 a correspondence took place
between us, which, though conducted especially on his side in a friendly
spirit, was the expression of differences of opinion which acted as a
final close to our intercourse. My reason told me that it was impossible
we could have got on together longer, had he stayed in Oxford; yet I
loved him too much to bid him farewell without pain. After a few years
had passed, I began to believe that his influence on me in a higher
respect than intellectual advance, (I will not say through his fault,)
had not been satisfactory. I believe that he has inserted sharp things
in his later works about me. They have never come in my way, and I have
not thought it necessary to seek out what would pain me so much in the

What he did for me in point of religious opinion, was, first, to teach
me the existence of the Church, as a substantive body or corporation;
next to fix in me those anti-Erastian views of Church polity, which were
one of the most prominent features of the Tractarian movement. On this
point, and, as far as I know, on this point alone, he and Hurrell Froude
intimately sympathized, though Froude's development of opinion here was
of a later date. In the year 1826, in the course of a walk, he said much
to me about a work then just published, called "Letters on the Church by
an Episcopalian." He said that it would make my blood boil. It was
certainly a most powerful composition. One of our common friends told
me, that, after reading it, he could not keep still, but went on walking
up and down his room. It was ascribed at once to Whately; I gave eager
expression to the contrary opinion; but I found the belief of Oxford in
the affirmative to be too strong for me; rightly or wrongly I yielded to
the general voice; and I have never heard, then or since, of any
disclaimer of authorship on the part of Dr. Whately.

The main positions of this able essay are these; first that Church and
State should be independent of each other:--he speaks of the duty of
protesting "against the profanation of Christ's kingdom, by that _double
usurpation_, the interference of the Church in temporals, of the State
in spirituals," p. 191; and, secondly, that the Church may justly and by
right retain its property, though separated from the State. "The
clergy," he says p. 133, "though they ought not to be the hired servants
of the Civil Magistrate, may justly retain their revenues; and the
State, though it has no right of interference in spiritual concerns, not
only is justly entitled to support from the ministers of religion, and
from all other Christians, but would, under the system I am
recommending, obtain it much more effectually." The author of this work,
whoever he may be, argues out both these points with great force and
ingenuity, and with a thorough-going vehemence, which perhaps we may
refer to the circumstance, that he wrote, not _in propriâ personâ_, and
as thereby answerable for every sentiment that he advanced, but in the
professed character of a Scotch Episcopalian. His work had a gradual,
but a deep effect on my mind.

I am not aware of any other religious opinion which I owe to Dr.
Whately. In his special theological tenets I had no sympathy. In the
next year, 1827, he told me he considered that I was Arianizing. The
case was this: though at that time I had not read Bishop Bull's
_Defensio_ nor the Fathers, I was just then very strong for that
ante-Nicene view of the Trinitarian doctrine, which some writers, both
Catholic and non-Catholic, have accused of wearing a sort of Arian
exterior. This is the meaning of a passage in Froude's Remains, in which
he seems to accuse me of speaking against the Athanasian Creed. I had
contrasted the two aspects of the Trinitarian doctrine, which are
respectively presented by the Athanasian Creed and the Nicene. My
criticisms were to the effect that some of the verses of the former
Creed were unnecessarily scientific. This is a specimen of a certain
disdain for Antiquity which had been growing on me now for several
years. It showed itself in some flippant language against the Fathers in
the Encyclopædia Metropolitana, about whom I knew little at the time,
except what I had learnt as a boy from Joseph Milner. In writing on the
Scripture Miracles in 1825-6, I had read Middleton on the Miracles of
the early Church, and had imbibed a portion of his spirit.

The truth is, I was beginning to prefer intellectual excellence to
moral; I was drifting in the direction of the Liberalism of the day[3].
I was rudely awakened from my dream at the end of 1827 by two great
blows--illness and bereavement.

[3] Vide Note A, _Liberalism_, at the end of the volume.

In the beginning of 1829, came the formal break between Dr. Whately and
me; the affair of Mr. Peel's re-election was the occasion of it. I think
in 1828 or 1827 I had voted in the minority, when the Petition to
Parliament against the Catholic Claims was brought into Convocation. I
did so mainly on the views suggested to me in the Letters of an
Episcopalian. Also I shrank from the bigoted "two-bottle-orthodox," as
they were invidiously called. When then I took part against Mr. Peel, it
was on an academical, not at all an ecclesiastical or a political
ground; and this I professed at the time. I considered that Mr. Peel had
taken the University by surprise; that his friends had no right to call
upon us to turn round on a sudden, and to expose ourselves to the
imputation of time-serving; and that a great University ought not to be
bullied even by a great Duke of Wellington. Also by this time I was
under the influence of Keble and Froude; who, in addition to the reasons
I have given, disliked the Duke's change of policy as dictated by

Whately was considerably annoyed at me, and he took a humourous revenge,
of which he had given me due notice beforehand. As head of a house he
had duties of hospitality to men of all parties; he asked a set of the
least intellectual men in Oxford to dinner, and men most fond of port;
he made me one of this party; placed me between Provost This and
Principal That, and then asked me if I was proud of my friends. However,
he had a serious meaning in his act; he saw, more clearly than I could
do, that I was separating from his own friends for good and all.

Dr. Whately attributed my leaving his _clientela_ to a wish on my part
to be the head of a party myself. I do not think that this charge was
deserved. My habitual feeling then and since has been, that it was not I
who sought friends, but friends who sought me. Never man had kinder or
more indulgent friends than I have had; but I expressed my own feeling
as to the mode in which I gained them, in this very year 1829, in the
course of a copy of verses. Speaking of my blessings, I said, "Blessings
of friends, which to my door _unasked, unhoped_, have come." They have
come, they have gone; they came to my great joy, they went to my great
grief. He who gave took away. Dr. Whately's impression about me,
however, admits of this explanation:--

During the first years of my residence at Oriel, though proud of my
College, I was not quite at home there. I was very much alone, and I
used often to take my daily walk by myself. I recollect once meeting Dr.
Copleston, then Provost, with one of the Fellows. He turned round, and
with the kind courteousness which sat so well on him, made me a bow and
said, "Nunquam minus solus, quàm cùm solus." At that time indeed (from
1823) I had the intimacy of my dear and true friend Dr. Pusey, and could
not fail to admire and revere a soul so devoted to the cause of
religion, so full of good works, so faithful in his affections; but he
left residence when I was getting to know him well. As to Dr. Whately
himself, he was too much my superior to allow of my being at my ease
with him; and to no one in Oxford at this time did I open my heart fully
and familiarly. But things changed in 1826. At that time I became one of
the Tutors of my College, and this gave me position; besides, I had
written one or two Essays which had been well received. I began to be
known. I preached my first University Sermon. Next year I was one of the
Public Examiners for the B.A. degree. In 1828 I became Vicar of St.
Mary's. It was to me like the feeling of spring weather after winter;
and, if I may so speak, I came out of my shell; I remained out of it
till 1841.

The two persons who knew me best at that time are still alive, beneficed
clergymen, no longer my friends. They could tell better than any one
else what I was in those years. From this time my tongue was, as it
were, loosened, and I spoke spontaneously and without effort. One of the
two, Mr. Rickards, said of me, I have been told, "Here is a fellow who,
when he is silent, will never begin to speak; and when he once begins to
speak, will never stop." It was at this time that I began to have
influence, which steadily increased for a course of years. I gained upon
my pupils, and was in particular intimate and affectionate with two of
our probationer Fellows, Robert Isaac Wilberforce (afterwards
Archdeacon) and Richard Hurrell Froude. Whately then, an acute man,
perhaps saw around me the signs of an incipient party, of which I was
not conscious myself. And thus we discern the first elements of that
movement afterwards called Tractarian.

The true and primary author of it, however, as is usual with great
motive-powers, was out of sight. Having carried off as a mere boy the
highest honours of the University, he had turned from the admiration
which haunted his steps, and sought for a better and holier satisfaction
in pastoral work in the country. Need I say that I am speaking of John
Keble? The first time that I was in a room with him was on occasion of
my election to a fellowship at Oriel, when I was sent for into the
Tower, to shake hands with the Provost and Fellows. How is that hour
fixed in my memory after the changes of forty-two years, forty-two this
very day on which I write! I have lately had a letter in my hands, which
I sent at the time to my great friend, John William Bowden, with whom I
passed almost exclusively my Under-graduate years. "I had to hasten to
the Tower," I say to him, "to receive the congratulations of all the
Fellows. I bore it till Keble took my hand, and then felt so abashed and
unworthy of the honour done me, that I seemed desirous of quite sinking
into the ground." His had been the first name which I had heard spoken
of, with reverence rather than admiration, when I came up to Oxford.
When one day I was walking in High Street with my dear earliest friend
just mentioned, with what eagerness did he cry out, "There's Keble!" and
with what awe did I look at him! Then at another time I heard a Master
of Arts of my College give an account how he had just then had occasion
to introduce himself on some business to Keble, and how gentle,
courteous, and unaffected Keble had been, so as almost to put him out of
countenance. Then too it was reported, truly or falsely, how a rising
man of brilliant reputation, the present Dean of St. Paul's, Dr. Milman,
admired and loved him, adding, that somehow he was strangely unlike any
one else. However, at the time when I was elected Fellow of Oriel he was
not in residence, and he was shy of me for years in consequence of the
marks which I bore upon me of the evangelical and liberal schools. At
least so I have ever thought. Hurrell Froude brought us together about
1828: it is one of the sayings preserved in his "Remains,"--"Do you know
the story of the murderer who had done one good thing in his life? Well;
if I was ever asked what good deed I had ever done, I should say that I
had brought Keble and Newman to understand each other."

The Christian Year made its appearance in 1827. It is not necessary, and
scarcely becoming, to praise a book which has already become one of the
classics of the language. When the general tone of religious literature
was so nerveless and impotent, as it was at that time, Keble struck an
original note and woke up in the hearts of thousands a new music, the
music of a school, long unknown in England. Nor can I pretend to
analyze, in my own instance, the effect of religious teaching so deep,
so pure, so beautiful. I have never till now tried to do so; yet I think
I am not wrong in saying, that the two main intellectual truths which it
brought home to me, were the same two, which I had learned from Butler,
though recast in the creative mind of my new master. The first of those
was what may be called, in a large sense of the word, the Sacramental
system; that is, the doctrine that material phenomena are both the types
and the instruments of real things unseen,--a doctrine, which embraces
in its fulness, not only what Anglicans, as well as Catholics, believe
about Sacraments properly so called; but also the article of "the
Communion of Saints;" and likewise the Mysteries of the faith. The
connexion of this philosophy of religion with what is sometimes called
"Berkeleyism" has been mentioned above; I knew little of Berkeley at
this time except by name; nor have I ever studied him.

On the second intellectual principle which I gained from Mr. Keble, I
could say a great deal; if this were the place for it. It runs through
very much that I have written, and has gained for me many hard names.
Butler teaches us that probability is the guide of life. The danger of
this doctrine, in the case of many minds, is, its tendency to destroy in
them absolute certainty, leading them to consider every conclusion as
doubtful, and resolving truth into an opinion, which it is safe indeed
to obey or to profess, but not possible to embrace with full internal
assent. If this were to be allowed, then the celebrated saying, "O God,
if there be a God, save my soul, if I have a soul!" would be the highest
measure of devotion:--but who can really pray to a Being, about whose
existence he is seriously in doubt?

I considered that Mr. Keble met this difficulty by ascribing the
firmness of assent which we give to religious doctrine, not to the
probabilities which introduced it, but to the living power of faith and
love which accepted it. In matters of religion, he seemed to say, it is
not merely probability which makes us intellectually certain, but
probability as it is put to account by faith and love. It is faith and
love which give to probability a force which it has not in itself. Faith
and love are directed towards an Object; in the vision of that Object
they live; it is that Object, received in faith and love, which renders
it reasonable to take probability as sufficient for internal conviction.
Thus the argument from Probability, in the matter of religion, became an
argument from Personality, which in fact is one form of the argument
from Authority.

In illustration, Mr. Keble used to quote the words of the Psalm: "I will
guide thee with mine _eye_. Be ye not like to horse and mule, which have
no understanding; whose mouths must be held with bit and bridle, lest
they fall upon thee." This is the very difference, he used to say,
between slaves, and friends or children. Friends do not ask for literal
commands; but, from their knowledge of the speaker, they understand his
half-words, and from love of him they anticipate his wishes. Hence it
is, that in his Poem for St. Bartholomew's Day, he speaks of the "Eye of
God's word;" and in the note quotes Mr. Miller, of Worcester College,
who remarks in his Bampton Lectures, on the special power of Scripture,
as having "this Eye, like that of a portrait, uniformly fixed upon us,
turn where we will." The view thus suggested by Mr. Keble, is brought
forward in one of the earliest of the "Tracts for the Times." In No. 8 I
say, "The Gospel is a Law of Liberty. We are treated as sons, not as
servants; not subjected to a code of formal commandments, but addressed
as those who love God, and wish to please Him."

I did not at all dispute this view of the matter, for I made use of it
myself; but I was dissatisfied, because it did not go to the root of the
difficulty. It was beautiful and religious, but it did not even profess
to be logical; and accordingly I tried to complete it by considerations
of my own, which are to be found in my University Sermons, Essay on
Ecclesiastical Miracles, and Essay on Development of Doctrine. My
argument is in outline as follows: that that absolute certitude which we
were able to possess, whether as to the truths of natural theology, or
as to the fact of a revelation, was the result of an _assemblage_ of
concurring and converging probabilities, and that, both according to the
constitution of the human mind and the will of its Maker; that certitude
was a habit of mind, that certainty was a quality of propositions; that
probabilities which did not reach to logical certainty, might suffice
for a mental certitude; that the certitude thus brought about might
equal in measure and strength the certitude which was created by the
strictest scientific demonstration; and that to possess such certitude
might in given cases and to given individuals be a plain duty, though
not to others in other circumstances:--

Moreover, that as there were probabilities which sufficed for certitude,
so there were other probabilities which were legitimately adapted to
create opinion; that it might be quite as much a matter of duty in given
cases and to given persons to have about a fact an opinion of a definite
strength and consistency, as in the case of greater or of more numerous
probabilities it was a duty to have a certitude; that accordingly we
were bound to be more or less sure, on a sort of (as it were) graduated
scale of assent, viz. according as the probabilities attaching to a
professed fact were brought home to us, and as the case might be, to
entertain about it a pious belief, or a pious opinion, or a religious
conjecture, or at least, a tolerance of such belief, or opinion or
conjecture in others; that on the other hand, as it was a duty to have a
belief, of more or less strong texture, in given cases, so in other
cases it was a duty not to believe, not to opine, not to conjecture, not
even to tolerate the notion that a professed fact was true, inasmuch as
it would be credulity or superstition, or some other moral fault, to do
so. This was the region of Private Judgment in religion; that is, of a
Private Judgment, not formed arbitrarily and according to one's fancy or
liking, but conscientiously, and under a sense of duty.

Considerations such as these throw a new light on the subject of
Miracles, and they seem to have led me to reconsider the view which I
had taken of them in my Essay in 1825-6. I do not know what was the date
of this change in me, nor of the train of ideas on which it was founded.
That there had been already great miracles, as those of Scripture, as
the Resurrection, was a fact establishing the principle that the laws of
nature had sometimes been suspended by their Divine Author, and since
what had happened once might happen again, a certain probability, at
least no kind of improbability, was attached to the idea taken in
itself, of miraculous intervention in later times, and miraculous
accounts were to be regarded in connexion with the verisimilitude,
scope, instrument, character, testimony, and circumstances, with which
they presented themselves to us; and, according to the final result of
those various considerations, it was our duty to be sure, or to believe,
or to opine, or to surmise, or to tolerate, or to reject, or to
denounce. The main difference between my Essay on Miracles in 1826 and
my Essay in 1842 is this: that in 1826 I considered that miracles were
sharply divided into two classes, those which were to be received, and
those which were to be rejected; whereas in 1842 I saw that they were to
be regarded according to their greater or less probability, which was in
some cases sufficient to create certitude about them, in other cases
only belief or opinion.

Moreover, the argument from Analogy, on which this view of the question
was founded, suggested to me something besides, in recommendation of the
Ecclesiastical Miracles. It fastened itself upon the theory of Church
History which I had learned as a boy from Joseph Milner. It is Milner's
doctrine, that upon the visible Church come down from above, at certain
intervals, large and temporary _Effusions_ of divine grace. This is the
leading idea of his work. He begins by speaking of the Day of Pentecost,
as marking "the first of those _Effusions_ of the Spirit of God, which
from age to age have visited the earth since the coming of Christ." Vol.
i. p. 3. In a note he adds that "in the term 'Effusion' there is _not_
here included the idea of the miraculous or extraordinary operations of
the Spirit of God;" but still it was natural for me, admitting Milner's
general theory, and applying to it the principle of analogy, not to stop
short at his abrupt _ipse dixit_, but boldly to pass forward to the
conclusion, on other grounds plausible, that as miracles accompanied the
first effusion of grace, so they might accompany the later. It is surely
a natural and on the whole, a true anticipation (though of course there
are exceptions in particular cases), that gifts and graces go together;
now, according to the ancient Catholic doctrine, the gift of miracles
was viewed as the attendant and shadow of transcendent sanctity: and
moreover, since such sanctity was not of every day's occurrence, nay
further, since one period of Church history differed widely from
another, and, as Joseph Milner would say, there have been generations or
centuries of degeneracy or disorder, and times of revival, and since one
region might be in the mid-day of religious fervour, and another in
twilight or gloom, there was no force in the popular argument, that,
because we did not see miracles with our own eyes, miracles had not
happened in former times, or were not now at this very time taking place
in distant places:--but I must not dwell longer on a subject, to which
in a few words it is impossible to do justice[4].

[4] Vide note B, _Ecclesiastical Miracles_, at the end of the volume.

       *       *       *       *       *

Hurrell Froude was a pupil of Keble's, formed by him, and in turn
reacting upon him. I knew him first in 1826, and was in the closest and
most affectionate friendship with him from about 1829 till his death in
1836. He was a man of the highest gifts,--so truly many-sided, that it
would be presumptuous in me to attempt to describe him, except under
those aspects in which he came before me. Nor have I here to speak of
the gentleness and tenderness of nature, the playfulness, the free
elastic force and graceful versatility of mind, and the patient winning
considerateness in discussion, which endeared him to those to whom he
opened his heart; for I am all along engaged upon matters of belief and
opinion, and am introducing others into my narrative, not for their own
sake, or because I love and have loved them, so much as because, and so
far as, they have influenced my theological views. In this respect then,
I speak of Hurrell Froude,--in his intellectual aspect,--as a man of
high genius, brimful and overflowing with ideas and views, in him
original, which were too many and strong even for his bodily strength,
and which crowded and jostled against each other in their effort after
distinct shape and expression. And he had an intellect as critical and
logical as it was speculative and bold. Dying prematurely, as he did,
and in the conflict and transition-state of opinion, his religious views
never reached their ultimate conclusion, by the very reason of their
multitude and their depth. His opinions arrested and influenced me, even
when they did not gain my assent. He professed openly his admiration of
the Church of Rome, and his hatred of the Reformers. He delighted in the
notion of an hierarchical system, of sacerdotal power, and of full
ecclesiastical liberty. He felt scorn of the maxim, "The Bible and the
Bible only is the religion of Protestants;" and he gloried in accepting
Tradition as a main instrument of religious teaching. He had a high
severe idea of the intrinsic excellence of Virginity; and he considered
the Blessed Virgin its great Pattern. He delighted in thinking of the
Saints; he had a vivid appreciation of the idea of sanctity, its
possibility and its heights; and he was more than inclined to believe a
large amount of miraculous interference as occurring in the early and
middle ages. He embraced the principle of penance and mortification. He
had a deep devotion to the Real Presence, in which he had a firm faith.
He was powerfully drawn to the Medieval Church, but not to the

He had a keen insight into abstract truth; but he was an Englishman to
the backbone in his severe adherence to the real and the concrete. He
had a most classical taste, and a genius for philosophy and art; and he
was fond of historical inquiry, and the politics of religion. He had no
turn for theology as such. He set no sufficient value on the writings of
the Fathers, on the detail or development of doctrine, on the definite
traditions of the Church viewed in their matter, on the teaching of the
Ecumenical Councils, or on the controversies out of which they arose. He
took an eager courageous view of things on the whole. I should say that
his power of entering into the minds of others did not equal his other
gifts; he could not believe, for instance, that I really held the Roman
Church to be Anti-christian. On many points he would not believe but
that I agreed with him, when I did not. He seemed not to understand my
difficulties. His were of a different kind, the contrariety between
theory and fact. He was a high Tory of the Cavalier stamp, and was
disgusted with the Toryism of the opponents of the Reform Bill. He was
smitten with the love of the Theocratic Church; he went abroad and was
shocked by the degeneracy which he thought he saw in the Catholics of

It is difficult to enumerate the precise additions to my theological
creed which I derived from a friend to whom I owe so much. He taught me
to look with admiration towards the Church of Rome, and in the same
degree to dislike the Reformation. He fixed deep in me the idea of
devotion to the Blessed Virgin, and he led me gradually to believe in
the Real Presence.

       *       *       *       *       *

There is one remaining source of my opinions to be mentioned, and that
far from the least important. In proportion as I moved out of the shadow
of that liberalism which had hung over my course, my early devotion
towards the Fathers returned; and in the Long Vacation of 1828 I set
about to read them chronologically, beginning with St. Ignatius and St.
Justin. About 1830 a proposal was made to me by Mr. Hugh Rose, who with
Mr. Lyall (afterwards Dean of Canterbury) was providing writers for a
Theological Library, to furnish them with a History of the Principal
Councils. I accepted it, and at once set to work on the Council of
Nicæa. It was to launch myself on an ocean with currents innumerable;
and I was drifted back first to the ante-Nicene history, and then to the
Church of Alexandria. The work at last appeared under the title of "The
Arians of the Fourth Century;" and of its 422 pages, the first 117
consisted of introductory matter, and the Council of Nicæa did not
appear till the 254th, and then occupied at most twenty pages.

I do not know when I first learnt to consider that Antiquity was the
true exponent of the doctrines of Christianity and the basis of the
Church of England; but I take it for granted that the works of Bishop
Bull, which at this time I read, were my chief introduction to this
principle. The course of reading, which I pursued in the composition of
my volume, was directly adapted to develope it in my mind. What
principally attracted me in the ante-Nicene period was the great Church
of Alexandria, the historical centre of teaching in those times. Of Rome
for some centuries comparatively little is known. The battle of Arianism
was first fought in Alexandria; Athanasius, the champion of the truth,
was Bishop of Alexandria; and in his writings he refers to the great
religious names of an earlier date, to Origen, Dionysius, and others,
who were the glory of its see, or of its school. The broad philosophy of
Clement and Origen carried me away; the philosophy, not the theological
doctrine; and I have drawn out some features of it in my volume, with
the zeal and freshness, but with the partiality, of a neophyte. Some
portions of their teaching, magnificent in themselves, came like music
to my inward ear, as if the response to ideas, which, with little
external to encourage them, I had cherished so long. These were based on
the mystical or sacramental principle, and spoke of the various
Economies or Dispensations of the Eternal. I understood these passages
to mean that the exterior world, physical and historical, was but the
manifestation to our senses of realities greater than itself. Nature was
a parable: Scripture was an allegory: pagan literature, philosophy, and
mythology, properly understood, were but a preparation for the Gospel.
The Greek poets and sages were in a certain sense prophets; for
"thoughts beyond their thought to those high bards were given." There
had been a directly divine dispensation granted to the Jews; but there
had been in some sense a dispensation carried on in favour of the
Gentiles. He who had taken the seed of Jacob for His elect people had
not therefore cast the rest of mankind out of His sight. In the fulness
of time both Judaism and Paganism had come to nought; the outward
framework, which concealed yet suggested the Living Truth, had never
been intended to last, and it was dissolving under the beams of the Sun
of Justice which shone behind it and through it. The process of change
had been slow; it had been done not rashly, but by rule and measure, "at
sundry times and in divers manners," first one disclosure and then
another, till the whole evangelical doctrine was brought into full
manifestation. And thus room was made for the anticipation of further
and deeper disclosures, of truths still under the veil of the letter,
and in their season to be revealed. The visible world still remains
without its divine interpretation; Holy Church in her sacraments and her
hierarchical appointments, will remain, even to the end of the world,
after all but a symbol of those heavenly facts which fill eternity. Her
mysteries are but the expressions in human language of truths to which
the human mind is unequal. It is evident how much there was in all this
in correspondence with the thoughts which had attracted me when I was
young, and with the doctrine which I have already associated with the
Analogy and the Christian Year.

It was, I suppose, to the Alexandrian school and to the early Church,
that I owe in particular what I definitely held about the Angels. I
viewed them, not only as the ministers employed by the Creator in the
Jewish and Christian dispensations, as we find on the face of Scripture,
but as carrying on, as Scripture also implies, the Economy of the
Visible World. I considered them as the real causes of motion, light,
and life, and of those elementary principles of the physical universe,
which, when offered in their developments to our senses, suggest to us
the notion of cause and effect, and of what are called the laws of
nature. This doctrine I have drawn out in my Sermon for Michaelmas day,
written in 1831. I say of the Angels, "Every breath of air and ray of
light and heat, every beautiful prospect, is, as it were, the skirts of
their garments, the waving of the robes of those whose faces see God."
Again, I ask what would be the thoughts of a man who, "when examining a
flower, or a herb, or a pebble, or a ray of light, which he treats as
something so beneath him in the scale of existence, suddenly discovered
that he was in the presence of some powerful being who was hidden behind
the visible things he was inspecting,--who, though concealing his wise
hand, was giving them their beauty, grace, and perfection, as being
God's instrument for the purpose,--nay, whose robe and ornaments those
objects were, which he was so eager to analyze?" and I therefore remark
that "we may say with grateful and simple hearts with the Three Holy
Children, 'O all ye works of the Lord, &c., &c., bless ye the Lord,
praise Him, and magnify Him for ever.'"

Also, besides the hosts of evil spirits, I considered there was a middle
race, [Greek: daimonia], neither in heaven, nor in hell; partially
fallen, capricious, wayward; noble or crafty, benevolent or malicious,
as the case might be. These beings gave a sort of inspiration or
intelligence to races, nations, and classes of men. Hence the action of
bodies politic and associations, which is often so different from that
of the individuals who compose them. Hence the character and the
instinct of states and governments, of religious communities and
communions. I thought these assemblages had their life in certain unseen
Powers. My preference of the Personal to the Abstract would naturally
lead me to this view. I thought it countenanced by the mention of "the
Prince of Persia" in the Prophet Daniel; and I think I considered that
it was of such intermediate beings that the Apocalypse spoke, in its
notice of "the Angels of the Seven Churches."

In 1837 I made a further development of this doctrine. I said to an
intimate and dear friend, Samuel Francis Wood, in a letter which came
into my hands on his death. "I have an idea. The mass of the Fathers
(Justin, Athenagoras, Irenæus, Clement, Tertullian, Origen, Lactantius,
Sulpicius, Ambrose, Nazianzen,) hold that, though Satan fell from the
beginning, the Angels fell before the deluge, falling in love with the
daughters of men. This has lately come across me as a remarkable
solution of a notion which I cannot help holding. Daniel speaks as if
each nation had its guardian Angel. I cannot but think that there are
beings with a great deal of good in them, yet with great defects, who
are the animating principles of certain institutions, &c., &c.... Take
England with many high virtues, and yet a low Catholicism. It seems to
me that John Bull is a spirit neither of heaven nor hell.... Has not the
Christian Church, in its parts, surrendered itself to one or other of
these simulations of the truth?... How are we to avoid Scylla and
Charybdis and go straight on to the very image of Christ?" &c., &c.

I am aware that what I have been saying will, with many men, be doing
credit to my imagination at the expense of my judgment--"Hippoclides
doesn't care;" I am not setting myself up as a pattern of good sense or
of any thing else: I am but giving a history of my opinions, and that,
with the view of showing that I have come by them through intelligible
processes of thought and honest external means. The doctrine indeed of
the Economy has in some quarters been itself condemned as intrinsically
pernicious,--as if leading to lying and equivocation, when applied, as I
have applied it in my remarks upon it in my History of the Arians, to
matters of conduct. My answer to this imputation I postpone to the
concluding pages of my Volume.

While I was engaged in writing my work upon the Arians, great events
were happening at home and abroad, which brought out into form and
passionate expression the various beliefs which had so gradually been
winning their way into my mind. Shortly before, there had been a
Revolution in France; the Bourbons had been dismissed: and I held that
it was unchristian for nations to cast off their governors, and, much
more, sovereigns who had the divine right of inheritance. Again, the
great Reform Agitation was going on around me as I wrote. The Whigs had
come into power; Lord Grey had told the Bishops to set their house in
order, and some of the Prelates had been insulted and threatened in the
streets of London. The vital question was, how were we to keep the
Church from being liberalized? there was such apathy on the subject in
some quarters, such imbecile alarm in others; the true principles of
Churchmanship seemed so radically decayed, and there was such
distraction in the councils of the Clergy. Blomfield, the Bishop of
London of the day, an active and open-hearted man, had been for years
engaged in diluting the high orthodoxy of the Church by the introduction
of members of the Evangelical body into places of influence and trust.
He had deeply offended men who agreed in opinion with myself, by an
off-hand saying (as it was reported) to the effect that belief in the
Apostolical succession had gone out with the Non-jurors. "We can count
you," he said to some of the gravest and most venerated persons of the
old school. And the Evangelical party itself, with their late successes,
seemed to have lost that simplicity and unworldliness which I admired so
much in Milner and Scott. It was not that I did not venerate such men as
Ryder, the then Bishop of Lichfield, and others of similar sentiments,
who were not yet promoted out of the ranks of the Clergy, but I thought
little of the Evangelicals as a class. I thought they played into the
hands of the Liberals. With the Establishment thus divided and
threatened, thus ignorant of its true strength, I compared that fresh
vigorous Power of which I was reading in the first centuries. In her
triumphant zeal on behalf of that Primeval Mystery, to which I had had
so great a devotion from my youth, I recognized the movement of my
Spiritual Mother. "Incessu patuit Dea." The self-conquest of her
Ascetics, the patience of her Martyrs, the irresistible determination of
her Bishops, the joyous swing of her advance, both exalted and abashed
me. I said to myself, "Look on this picture and on that;" I felt
affection for my own Church, but not tenderness; I felt dismay at her
prospects, anger and scorn at her do-nothing perplexity. I thought that
if Liberalism once got a footing within her, it was sure of the victory
in the event. I saw that Reformation principles were powerless to rescue
her. As to leaving her, the thought never crossed my imagination; still
I ever kept before me that there was something greater than the
Established Church, and that that was the Church Catholic and Apostolic,
set up from the beginning, of which she was but the local presence and
the organ. She was nothing, unless she was this. She must be dealt with
strongly, or she would be lost. There was need of a second reformation.

At this time I was disengaged from College duties, and my health had
suffered from the labour involved in the composition of my Volume. It
was ready for the Press in July, 1832, though not published till the end
of 1833. I was easily persuaded to join Hurrell Froude and his Father,
who were going to the south of Europe for the health of the former.

We set out in December, 1832. It was during this expedition that my
Verses which are in the Lyra Apostolica were written;--a few indeed
before it, but not more than one or two of them after it. Exchanging, as
I was, definite Tutorial work, and the literary quiet and pleasant
friendships of the last six years, for foreign countries and an unknown
future, I naturally was led to think that some inward changes, as well
as some larger course of action, were coming upon me. At Whitchurch,
while waiting for the down mail to Falmouth, I wrote the verses about my
Guardian Angel, which begin with these words: "Are these the tracks of
some unearthly Friend?" and which go on to speak of "the vision" which
haunted me:--that vision is more or less brought out in the whole series
of these compositions.

I went to various coasts of the Mediterranean; parted with my friends at
Rome; went down for the second time to Sicily without companion, at the
end of April; and got back to England by Palermo in the early part of
July. The strangeness of foreign life threw me back into myself; I found
pleasure in historical sites and beautiful scenes, not in men and
manners. We kept clear of Catholics throughout our tour. I had a
conversation with the Dean of Malta, a most pleasant man, lately dead;
but it was about the Fathers, and the Library of the great church. I
knew the Abbate Santini, at Rome, who did no more than copy for me the
Gregorian tones. Froude and I made two calls upon Monsignore (now
Cardinal) Wiseman at the Collegio Inglese, shortly before we left Rome.
Once we heard him preach at a church in the Corso. I do not recollect
being in a room with any other ecclesiastics, except a Priest at
Castro-Giovanni in Sicily, who called on me when I was ill, and with
whom I wished to hold a controversy. As to Church Services, we attended
the Tenebræ, at the Sestine, for the sake of the Miserere; and that was
all. My general feeling was, "All, save the spirit of man, is divine." I
saw nothing but what was external; of the hidden life of Catholics I
knew nothing. I was still more driven back into myself, and felt my
isolation. England was in my thoughts solely, and the news from England
came rarely and imperfectly. The Bill for the Suppression of the Irish
Sees was in progress, and filled my mind. I had fierce thoughts against
the Liberals.

It was the success of the Liberal cause which fretted me inwardly. I
became fierce against its instruments and its manifestations. A French
vessel was at Algiers; I would not even look at the tricolour. On my
return, though forced to stop twenty-four hours at Paris, I kept indoors
the whole time, and all that I saw of that beautiful city was what I saw
from the Diligence. The Bishop of London had already sounded me as to my
filling one of the Whitehall preacherships, which he had just then put
on a new footing; but I was indignant at the line which he was taking,
and from my Steamer I had sent home a letter declining the appointment
by anticipation, should it be offered to me. At this time I was
specially annoyed with Dr. Arnold, though it did not last into later
years. Some one, I think, asked, in conversation at Rome, whether a
certain interpretation of Scripture was Christian? it was answered that
Dr. Arnold took it; I interposed, "But is _he_ a Christian?" The subject
went out of my head at once; when afterwards I was taxed with it, I
could say no more in explanation, than (what I believe was the fact)
that I must have had in mind some free views of Dr. Arnold about the Old
Testament:--I thought I must have meant, "Arnold answers for the
interpretation, but who is to answer for Arnold?" It was at Rome, too,
that we began the Lyra Apostolica which appeared monthly in the British
Magazine. The motto shows the feeling of both Froude and myself at the
time: we borrowed from M. Bunsen a Homer, and Froude chose the words in
which Achilles, on returning to the battle, says, "You shall know the
difference, now that I am back again."

Especially when I was left by myself, the thought came upon me that
deliverance is wrought, not by the many but by the few, not by bodies
but by persons. Now it was, I think, that I repeated to myself the
words, which had ever been dear to me from my school days, "Exoriare
aliquis!"--now too, that Southey's beautiful poem of Thalaba, for which
I had an immense liking, came forcibly to my mind. I began to think that
I had a mission. There are sentences of my letters to my friends to this
effect, if they are not destroyed. When we took leave of Monsignore
Wiseman, he had courteously expressed a wish that we might make a second
visit to Rome; I said with great gravity, "We have a work to do in
England." I went down at once to Sicily, and the presentiment grew
stronger. I struck into the middle of the island, and fell ill of a
fever at Leonforte. My servant thought that I was dying, and begged for
my last directions. I gave them, as he wished; but I said, "I shall not
die." I repeated, "I shall not die, for I have not sinned against light,
I have not sinned against light." I never have been able quite to make
out what I meant.

I got to Castro-Giovanni, and was laid up there for nearly three weeks.
Towards the end of May I left for Palermo, taking three days for the
journey. Before starting from my inn in the morning of May 26th or 27th,
I sat down on my bed, and began to sob violently. My servant, who had
acted as my nurse, asked what ailed me. I could only answer him, "I have
a work to do in England."

I was aching to get home; yet for want of a vessel I was kept at Palermo
for three weeks. I began to visit the Churches, and they calmed my
impatience, though I did not attend any services. I knew nothing of the
Presence of the Blessed Sacrament there. At last I got off in an orange
boat, bound for Marseilles. Then it was that I wrote the lines, "Lead,
kindly light," which have since become well known. We were becalmed a
whole week in the Straits of Bonifacio. I was writing verses the whole
time of my passage. At length I got to Marseilles, and set off for
England. The fatigue of travelling was too much for me, and I was laid
up for several days at Lyons. At last I got off again, and did not stop
night or day, (except a compulsory delay at Paris,) till I reached
England, and my mother's house. My brother had arrived from Persia only
a few hours before. This was on the Tuesday. The following Sunday, July
14th, Mr. Keble preached the Assize Sermon in the University Pulpit. It
was published under the title of "National Apostasy." I have ever
considered and kept the day, as the start of the religious movement of



In spite of the foregoing pages, I have no romantic story to tell; but I
have written them, because it is my duty to tell things as they took
place. I have not exaggerated the feelings with which I returned to
England, and I have no desire to dress up the events which followed, so
as to make them in keeping with the narrative which has gone before. I
soon relapsed into the every-day life which I had hitherto led; in all
things the same, except that a new object was given me. I had employed
myself in my own rooms in reading and writing, and in the care of a
Church, before I left England, and I returned to the same occupations
when I was back again. And yet perhaps those first vehement feelings
which carried me on, were necessary for the beginning of the Movement;
and afterwards, when it was once begun, the special need of me was over.

       *       *       *       *       *

When I got home from abroad, I found that already a movement had
commenced, in opposition to the specific danger which at that time was
threatening the religion of the nation and its Church. Several zealous
and able men had united their counsels, and were in correspondence with
each other. The principal of these were Mr. Keble, Hurrell Froude, who
had reached home long before me, Mr. William Palmer of Dublin and
Worcester College (not Mr. William Palmer of Magdalen, who is now a
Catholic), Mr. Arthur Perceval, and Mr. Hugh Rose.

To mention Mr. Hugh Rose's name is to kindle in the minds of those who
knew him a host of pleasant and affectionate remembrances. He was the
man above all others fitted by his cast of mind and literary powers to
make a stand, if a stand could be made, against the calamity of the
times. He was gifted with a high and large mind, and a true sensibility
of what was great and beautiful; he wrote with warmth and energy; and he
had a cool head and cautious judgment. He spent his strength and
shortened his life. Pro Ecclesia Dei, as he understood that sovereign
idea. Some years earlier he had been the first to give warning, I think
from the University Pulpit at Cambridge, of the perils to England which
lay in the biblical and theological speculations of Germany. The Reform
agitation followed, and the Whig Government came into power; and he
anticipated in their distribution of Church patronage the authoritative
introduction of liberal opinions into the country. He feared that by the
Whig party a door would be opened in England to the most grievous of
heresies, which never could be closed again. In order under such grave
circumstances to unite Churchmen together, and to make a front against
the coming danger, he had in 1832 commenced the British Magazine, and in
the same year he came to Oxford in the summer term, in order to beat up
for writers for his publication; on that occasion I became known to him
through Mr. Palmer. His reputation and position came in aid of his
obvious fitness, in point of character and intellect, to become the
centre of an ecclesiastical movement, if such a movement were to depend
on the action of a party. His delicate health, his premature death,
would have frustrated the expectation, even though the new school of
opinion had been more exactly thrown into the shape of a party, than in
fact was the case. But he zealously backed up the first efforts of those
who were principals in it; and, when he went abroad to die, in 1838, he
allowed me the solace of expressing my feelings of attachment and
gratitude to him by addressing him, in the dedication of a volume of my
Sermons, as the man "who, when hearts were failing, bade us stir up the
gift that was in us, and betake ourselves to our true Mother."

But there were other reasons, besides Mr. Rose's state of health, which
hindered those who so much admired him from availing themselves of his
close co-operation in the coming fight. United as both he and they were
in the general scope of the Movement, they were in discordance with each
other from the first in their estimate of the means to be adopted for
attaining it. Mr. Rose had a position in the Church, a name, and serious
responsibilities; he had direct ecclesiastical superiors; he had
intimate relations with his own University, and a large clerical
connexion through the country. Froude and I were nobodies; with no
characters to lose, and no antecedents to fetter us. Rose could not go
a-head across country, as Froude had no scruples in doing. Froude was a
bold rider, as on horseback, so also in his speculations. After a long
conversation with him on the logical bearing of his principles, Mr. Rose
said of him with quiet humour, that "he did not seem to be afraid of
inferences." It was simply the truth; Froude had that strong hold of
first principles, and that keen perception of their value, that he was
comparatively indifferent to the revolutionary action which would attend
on their application to a given state of things; whereas in the thoughts
of Rose, as a practical man, existing facts had the precedence of every
other idea, and the chief test of the soundness of a line of policy lay
in the consideration whether it would work. This was one of the first
questions, which, as it seemed to me, on every occasion occurred to his
mind. With Froude, Erastianism,--that is, the union (so he viewed it) of
Church and State,--was the parent, or if not the parent, the serviceable
and sufficient tool, of liberalism. Till that union was snapped,
Christian doctrine never could be safe; and, while he well knew how high
and unselfish was the temper of Mr. Rose, yet he used to apply to him an
epithet, reproachful in his own mouth;--Rose was a "conservative." By
bad luck, I brought out this word to Mr. Rose in a letter of my own,
which I wrote to him in criticism of something he had inserted in his
Magazine: I got a vehement rebuke for my pains, for though Rose pursued
a conservative line, he had as high a disdain, as Froude could have, of
a worldly ambition, and an extreme sensitiveness of such an imputation.

But there was another reason still, and a more elementary one, which
severed Mr. Rose from the Oxford Movement. Living movements do not come
of committees, nor are great ideas worked out through the post, even
though it had been the penny post. This principle deeply penetrated both
Froude and myself from the first, and recommended to us the course which
things soon took spontaneously, and without set purpose of our own.
Universities are the natural centres of intellectual movements. How
could men act together, whatever was their zeal, unless they were united
in a sort of individuality? Now, first, we had no unity of place. Mr.
Rose was in Suffolk, Mr. Perceval in Surrey, Mr. Keble in
Gloucestershire; Hurrell Froude had to go for his health to Barbadoes.
Mr. Palmer was indeed in Oxford; this was an important advantage, and
told well in the first months of the Movement;--but another condition,
besides that of place, was required.

A far more essential unity was that of antecedents,--a common history,
common memories, an intercourse of mind with mind in the past, and a
progress and increase in that intercourse in the present. Mr. Perceval,
to be sure, was a pupil of Mr. Keble's; but Keble, Rose, and Palmer,
represented distinct parties, or at least tempers, in the Establishment.
Mr. Palmer had many conditions of authority and influence. He was the
only really learned man among us. He understood theology as a science;
he was practised in the scholastic mode of controversial writing; and, I
believe, was as well acquainted, as he was dissatisfied, with the
Catholic schools. He was as decided in his religious views, as he was
cautious and even subtle in their expression, and gentle in their
enforcement. But he was deficient in depth; and besides, coming from a
distance, he never had really grown into an Oxford man, nor was he
generally received as such; nor had he any insight into the force of
personal influence and congeniality of thought in carrying out a
religious theory,--a condition which Froude and I considered essential
to any true success in the stand which had to be made against
Liberalism. Mr. Palmer had a certain connexion, as it may be called, in
the Establishment, consisting of high Church dignitaries, Archdeacons,
London Rectors, and the like, who belonged to what was commonly called
the high-and-dry school. They were far more opposed than even he was to
the irresponsible action of individuals. Of course their _beau idéal_ in
ecclesiastical action was a board of safe, sound, sensible men. Mr.
Palmer was their organ and representative; and he wished for a
Committee, an Association, with rules and meetings, to protect the
interests of the Church in its existing peril. He was in some measure
supported by Mr. Perceval.

I, on the other hand, had out of my own head begun the Tracts; and
these, as representing the antagonist principle of personality, were
looked upon by Mr. Palmer's friends with considerable alarm. The great
point at the time with these good men in London,--some of them men of
the highest principle, and far from influenced by what we used to call
Erastianism,--was to put down the Tracts. I, as their editor, and mainly
their author, was of course willing to give way. Keble and Froude
advocated their continuance strongly, and were angry with me for
consenting to stop them. Mr. Palmer shared the anxiety of his own
friends; and, kind as were his thoughts of us, he still not unnaturally
felt, for reasons of his own, some fidget and nervousness at the course
which his Oriel friends were taking. Froude, for whom he had a real
liking, took a high tone in his project of measures for dealing with
bishops and clergy, which must have shocked and scandalized him
considerably. As for me, there was matter enough in the early Tracts to
give him equal disgust; and doubtless I much tasked his generosity, when
he had to defend me, whether against the London dignitaries or the
country clergy. Oriel, from the time of Dr. Copleston to Dr. Hampden,
had had a name far and wide for liberality of thought; it had received a
formal recognition from the Edinburgh Review, if my memory serves me
truly, as the school of speculative philosophy in England; and on one
occasion, in 1833, when I presented myself, with some of the first
papers of the Movement, to a country clergyman in Northamptonshire, he
paused awhile, and then, eyeing me with significance, asked "Whether
Whately was at the bottom of them?"

Mr. Perceval wrote to me in support of the judgment of Mr. Palmer and
the dignitaries. I replied in a letter, which he afterwards published.
"As to the Tracts," I said to him (I quote my own words from his
Pamphlet), "every one has his own taste. You object to some things,
another to others. If we altered to please every one, the effect would
be spoiled. They were not intended as symbols _è cathedrâ_ but as the
expression of individual minds; and individuals, feeling strongly, while
on the one hand, they are incidentally faulty in mode or language, are
still peculiarly effective. No great work was done by a system; whereas
systems rise out of individual exertions. Luther was an individual. The
very faults of an individual excite attention; he loses, but his cause
(if good and he powerful-minded) gains. This is the way of things; we
promote truth by a self-sacrifice."

The visit which I made to the Northamptonshire Rector was only one of a
series of similar expedients, which I adopted during the year 1833. I
called upon clergy in various parts of the country, whether I was
acquainted with them or not, and I attended at the houses of friends
where several of them were from time to time assembled. I do not think
that much came of such attempts, nor were they quite in my way. Also I
wrote various letters to clergymen, which fared not much better, except
that they advertised the fact, that a rally in favour of the Church was
commencing. I did not care whether my visits were made to high Church or
low Church; I wished to make a strong pull in union with all who were
opposed to the principles of liberalism, whoever they might be. Giving
my name to the Editor, I commenced a series of letters in the Record
Newspaper: they ran to a considerable length; and were borne by him with
great courtesy and patience. The heading given to them was, "Church
Reform." The first was on the revival of Church Discipline; the second,
on its Scripture proof; the third, on the application of the doctrine;
the fourth was an answer to objections; the fifth was on the benefits of
discipline. And then the series was abruptly brought to a termination. I
had said what I really felt, and what was also in keeping with the
strong teaching of the Tracts, but I suppose the Editor discovered in me
some divergence from his own line of thought; for at length he sent a
very civil letter, apologizing for the non-appearance of my sixth
communication, on the ground that it contained an attack upon
"Temperance Societies," about which he did not wish a controversy in his
columns. He added, however, his serious regret at the theological views
of the Tracts. I had subscribed a small sum in 1828 towards the first
start of the Record.

Acts of the officious character, which I have been describing, were
uncongenial to my natural temper, to the genius of the Movement, and to
the historical mode of its success:--they were the fruit of that
exuberant and joyous energy with which I had returned from abroad, and
which I never had before or since. I had the exultation of health
restored, and home regained. While I was at Palermo and thought of the
breadth of the Mediterranean, and the wearisome journey across France, I
could not imagine how I was ever to get to England; but now I was amid
familiar scenes and faces once more. And my health and strength came
back to me with such a rebound, that some friends at Oxford, on seeing
me, did not well know that it was I, and hesitated before they spoke to
me. And I had the consciousness that I was employed in that work which I
had been dreaming about, and which I felt to be so momentous and
inspiring. I had a supreme confidence in our cause; we were upholding
that primitive Christianity which was delivered for all time by the
early teachers of the Church, and which was registered and attested in
the Anglican formularies and by the Anglican divines. That ancient
religion had well nigh faded away out of the land, through the political
changes of the last 150 years, and it must be restored. It would be in
fact a second Reformation:--a better reformation, for it would be a
return not to the sixteenth century, but to the seventeenth. No time was
to be lost, for the Whigs had come to do their worst, and the rescue
might come too late. Bishopricks were already in course of suppression;
Church property was in course of confiscation; Sees would soon be
receiving unsuitable occupants. We knew enough to begin preaching upon,
and there was no one else to preach. I felt as on board a vessel, which
first gets under weigh, and then the deck is cleared out, and luggage
and live stock stowed away into their proper receptacles.

Nor was it only that I had confidence in our cause, both in itself, and
in its polemical force, but also, on the other hand, I despised every
rival system of doctrine and its arguments too. As to the high Church
and the low Church, I thought that the one had not much more of a
logical basis than the other; while I had a thorough contempt for the
controversial position of the latter. I had a real respect for the
character of many of the advocates of each party, but that did not give
cogency to their arguments; and I thought, on the contrary, that the
Apostolical form of doctrine was essential and imperative, and its
grounds of evidence impregnable. Owing to this supreme confidence, it
came to pass at that time, that there was a double aspect in my bearing
towards others, which it is necessary for me to enlarge upon. My
behaviour had a mixture in it both of fierceness and of sport; and on
this account, I dare say, it gave offence to many; nor am I here
defending it.

I wished men to agree with me, and I walked with them step by step, as
far as they would go; this I did sincerely; but if they would stop, I
did not much care about it, but walked on, with some satisfaction that I
had brought them so far. I liked to make them preach the truth without
knowing it, and encouraged them to do so. It was a satisfaction to me
that the Record had allowed me to say so much in its columns, without
remonstrance. I was amused to hear of one of the Bishops, who, on
reading an early Tract on the Apostolical Succession, could not make up
his mind whether he held the doctrine or not. I was not distressed at
the wonder or anger of dull and self-conceited men, at propositions
which they did not understand. When a correspondent, in good faith,
wrote to a newspaper, to say that the "Sacrifice of the Holy Eucharist,"
spoken of in the Tract, was a false print for "Sacrament," I thought the
mistake too pleasant to be corrected before I was asked about it. I was
not unwilling to draw an opponent on step by step, by virtue of his own
opinions, to the brink of some intellectual absurdity, and to leave him
to get back as he could. I was not unwilling to play with a man, who
asked me impertinent questions. I think I had in my mouth the words of
the Wise man, "Answer a fool according to his folly," especially if he
was prying or spiteful. I was reckless of the gossip which was
circulated about me; and, when I might easily have set it right, did not
deign to do so. Also I used irony in conversation, when
matter-of-fact-men would not see what I meant.

This kind of behaviour was a sort of habit with me. If I have ever
trifled with my subject, it was a more serious fault. I never used
arguments which I saw clearly to be unsound. The nearest approach which
I remember to such conduct, but which I consider was clear of it
nevertheless, was in the case of Tract 15. The matter of this Tract was
furnished to me by a friend, to whom I had applied for assistance, but
who did not wish to be mixed up with the publication. He gave it me,
that I might throw it into shape, and I took his arguments as they
stood. In the chief portion of the Tract I fully agreed; for instance,
as to what it says about the Council of Trent; but there were arguments,
or some argument, in it which I did not follow; I do not recollect what
it was. Froude, I think, was disgusted with the whole Tract, and accused
me of _economy_ in publishing it. It is principally through Mr. Froude's
Remains that this word has got into our language. I think, I defended
myself with arguments such as these:--that, as every one knew, the
Tracts were written by various persons who agreed together in their
doctrine, but not always in the arguments by which it was to be proved;
that we must be tolerant of difference of opinion among ourselves; that
the author of the Tract had a right to his own opinion, and that the
argument in question was ordinarily received; that I did not give my own
name or authority, nor was asked for my personal belief, but only acted
instrumentally, as one might translate a friend's book into a foreign
language. I account these to be good arguments; nevertheless I feel also
that such practices admit of easy abuse and are consequently dangerous;
but then, again, I feel also this,--that if all such mistakes were to be
severely visited, not many men in public life would be left with a
character for honour and honesty.

This absolute confidence in my cause, which led me to the negligence or
wantonness which I have been instancing, also laid me open, not
unfairly, to the opposite charge of fierceness in certain steps which I
took, or words which I published. In the Lyra Apostolica, I have said
that before learning to love, we must "learn to hate;" though I had
explained my words by adding "hatred of sin." In one of my first Sermons
I said, "I do not shrink from uttering my firm conviction that it would
be a gain to the country were it vastly more superstitious, more
bigoted, more gloomy, more fierce in its religion than at present it
shows itself to be." I added, of course, that it would be an absurdity
to suppose such tempers of mind desirable in themselves. The corrector
of the press bore these strong epithets till he got to "more fierce,"
and then he put in the margin a _query_. In the very first page of the
first Tract, I said of the Bishops, that, "black event though it would
be for the country, yet we could not wish them a more blessed
termination of their course, than the spoiling of their goods and
martyrdom." In consequence of a passage in my work upon the Arian
History, a Northern dignitary wrote to accuse me of wishing to
re-establish the blood and torture of the Inquisition. Contrasting
heretics and heresiarchs, I had said, "The latter should meet with no
mercy: he assumes the office of the Tempter; and, so far forth as his
error goes, must be dealt with by the competent authority, as if he were
embodied evil. To spare him is a false and dangerous pity. It is to
endanger the souls of thousands, and it is uncharitable towards
himself." I cannot deny that this is a very fierce passage; but Arius
was banished, not burned; and it is only fair to myself to say that
neither at this, nor any other time of my life, not even when I was
fiercest, could I have even cut off a Puritan's ears, and I think the
sight of a Spanish _auto-da-fè_ would have been the death of me. Again,
when one of my friends, of liberal and evangelical opinions, wrote to
expostulate with me on the course I was taking, I said that we would
ride over him and his, as Othniel prevailed over Chushan-rishathaim,
king of Mesopotamia. Again, I would have no dealings with my brother,
and I put my conduct upon a syllogism. I said, "St. Paul bids us avoid
those who cause divisions; you cause divisions: therefore I must avoid
you." I dissuaded a lady from attending the marriage of a sister who had
seceded from the Anglican Church. No wonder that Blanco White, who had
known me under such different circumstances, now hearing the general
course that I was taking, was amazed at the change which he recognized
in me. He speaks bitterly and unfairly of me in his letters
contemporaneously with the first years of the Movement; but in 1839, on
looking back, he uses terms of me, which it would be hardly modest in me
to quote, were it not that what he says of me in praise occurs in the
midst of blame. He says: "In this party [the anti-Peel, in 1829] I
found, to my great surprise, my dear friend, Mr. Newman of Oriel. As he
had been one of the annual Petitioners to Parliament for Catholic
Emancipation, his sudden union with the most violent bigots was
inexplicable to me. That change was the first manifestation of the
mental revolution, which has suddenly made him one of the leading
persecutors of Dr. Hampden, and the most active and influential member
of that association called the Puseyite party, from which we have those
very strange productions, entitled, Tracts for the Times. While stating
these public facts, my heart feels a pang at the recollection of the
affectionate and mutual friendship between that excellent man and
myself; a friendship, which his principles of orthodoxy could not allow
him to continue in regard to one, whom he now regards as inevitably
doomed to eternal perdition. Such is the venomous character of
orthodoxy. What mischief must it create in a bad heart and narrow mind,
when it can work so effectually for evil, in one of the most benevolent
of bosoms, and one of the ablest of minds, in the amiable, the
intellectual, the refined John Henry Newman!" (Vol. iii. p. 131.) He
adds that I would have nothing to do with him, a circumstance which I do
not recollect, and very much doubt.

       *       *       *       *       *

I have spoken of my firm confidence in my position; and now let me state
more definitely what the position was which I took up, and the
propositions about which I was so confident. These were three:--

1. First was the principle of dogma: my battle was with liberalism; by
liberalism I mean the anti-dogmatic principle and its developments. This
was the first point on which I was certain. Here I make a remark:
persistence in a given belief is no sufficient test of its truth: but
departure from it is at least a slur upon the man who has felt so
certain about it. In proportion, then, as I had in 1832 a strong
persuasion of the truth of opinions which I have since given up, so far
a sort of guilt attaches to me, not only for that vain confidence, but
for all the various proceedings which were the consequence of it. But
under this first head I have the satisfaction of feeling that I have
nothing to retract, and nothing to repent of. The main principle of the
movement is as dear to me now, as it ever was. I have changed in many
things: in this I have not. From the age of fifteen, dogma has been the
fundamental principle of my religion: I know no other religion; I cannot
enter into the idea of any other sort of religion; religion, as a mere
sentiment, is to me a dream and a mockery. As well can there be filial
love without the fact of a father, as devotion without the fact of a
Supreme Being. What I held in 1816, I held in 1833, and I hold in 1864.
Please God, I shall hold it to the end. Even when I was under Dr.
Whately's influence, I had no temptation to be less zealous for the
great dogmas of the faith, and at various times I used to resist such
trains of thought on his part as seemed to me (rightly or wrongly) to
obscure them. Such was the fundamental principle of the Movement of

2. Secondly, I was confident in the truth of a certain definite
religious teaching, based upon this foundation of dogma; viz. that there
was a visible Church, with sacraments and rites which are the channels
of invisible grace. I thought that this was the doctrine of Scripture,
of the early Church, and of the Anglican Church. Here again, I have not
changed in opinion; I am as certain now on this point as I was in 1833,
and have never ceased to be certain. In 1834 and the following years I
put this ecclesiastical doctrine on a broader basis, after reading Laud,
Bramhall, and Stillingfleet and other Anglican divines on the one hand,
and after prosecuting the study of the Fathers on the other; but the
doctrine of 1833 was strengthened in me, not changed. When I began the
Tracts for the Times I rested the main doctrine, of which I am speaking,
upon Scripture, on the Anglican Prayer Book, and on St. Ignatius's
Epistles. (1) As to the existence of a visible Church, I especially
argued out the point from Scripture, in Tract 11, viz. from the Acts of
the Apostles and the Epistles. (2) As to the Sacraments and Sacramental
rites, I stood on the Prayer Book. I appealed to the Ordination Service,
in which the Bishop says, "Receive the Holy Ghost;" to the Visitation
Service, which teaches confession and absolution; to the Baptismal
Service, in which the Priest speaks of the child after baptism as
regenerate; to the Catechism, in which Sacramental Communion is
receiving "verily and indeed the Body and Blood of Christ;" to the
Commination Service, in which we are told to do "works of penance;" to
the Collects, Epistles, and Gospels, to the calendar and rubricks,
portions of the Prayer Book, wherein we find the festivals of the
Apostles, notice of certain other Saints, and days of fasting and

(3.) And further, as to the Episcopal system, I founded it upon the
Epistles of St. Ignatius, which inculcated it in various ways. One
passage especially impressed itself upon me: speaking of cases of
disobedience to ecclesiastical authority, he says, "A man does not
deceive that Bishop whom he sees, but he practises rather with the
Bishop Invisible, and so the question is not with flesh, but with God,
who knows the secret heart." I wished to act on this principle to the
letter, and I may say with confidence that I never consciously
transgressed it. I loved to act as feeling myself in my Bishop's sight,
as if it were the sight of God. It was one of my special supports and
safeguards against myself; I could not go very wrong while I had reason
to believe that I was in no respect displeasing him. It was not a mere
formal obedience to rule that I put before me, but I desired to please
him personally, as I considered him set over me by the Divine Hand. I
was strict in observing my clerical engagements, not only because they
_were_ engagements, but because I considered myself simply as the
servant and instrument of my Bishop. I did not care much for the Bench
of Bishops, except as they might be the voice of my Church: nor should I
have cared much for a Provincial Council; nor for a Diocesan Synod
presided over by my Bishop; all these matters seemed to me to be _jure
ecclesiastico_, but what to me was _jure divino_ was the voice of my
Bishop in his own person. My own Bishop was my Pope; I knew no other;
the successor of the Apostles, the Vicar of Christ. This was but a
practical exhibition of the Anglican theory of Church Government, as I
had already drawn it out myself, after various Anglican Divines. This
continued all through my course; when at length, in 1845, I wrote to
Bishop Wiseman, in whose Vicariate I found myself, to announce my
conversion, I could find nothing better to say to him than that I would
obey the Pope as I had obeyed my own Bishop in the Anglican Church. My
duty to him was my point of honour; his disapprobation was the one thing
which I could not bear. I believe it to have been a generous and honest
feeling; and in consequence I was rewarded by having all my time for
ecclesiastical superior a man, whom, had I had a choice, I should have
preferred, out and out, to any other Bishop on the Bench, and for whose
memory I have a special affection. Dr. Bagot--a man of noble mind, and
as kind-hearted and as considerate as he was noble. He ever sympathized
with me in my trials which followed; it was my own fault, that I was not
brought into more familiar personal relations with him, than it was my
happiness to be. May his name be ever blessed!

And now in concluding my remarks on the second point on which my
confidence rested, I repeat that here again I have no retractation to
announce as to its main outline. While I am now as clear in my
acceptance of the principle of dogma, as I was in 1833 and 1816, so
again I am now as firm in my belief of a visible Church, of the
authority of Bishops, of the grace of the sacraments, of the religious
worth of works of penance, as I was in 1833. I have added Articles to my
Creed; but the old ones, which I then held with a divine faith, remain.

3. But now, as to the third point on which I stood in 1833, and which I
have utterly renounced and trampled upon since,--my then view of the
Church of Rome;--I will speak about it as exactly as I can. When I was
young, as I have said already, and after I was grown up, I thought the
Pope to be Antichrist. At Christmas 1824-5 I preached a sermon to that
effect. But in 1827 I accepted eagerly the stanza in the Christian Year,
which many people thought too charitable, "Speak _gently_ of thy
sister's fall." From the time that I knew Froude I got less and less
bitter on the subject. I spoke (successively, but I cannot tell in what
order or at what dates) of the Roman Church as being bound up with "the
_cause_ of Antichrist," as being _one_ of the "_many_ antichrists"
foretold by St. John, as being influenced by "the _spirit_ of
Antichrist," and as having something "very Anti-christian" or
"unchristian" about her. From my boyhood and in 1824 I considered, after
Protestant authorities, that St. Gregory I. about A.D. 600 was the first
Pope that was Antichrist, though, in spite of this, he was also a great
and holy man; but in 1832-3 I thought the Church of Rome was bound up
with the cause of Antichrist by the Council of Trent. When it was that
in my deliberate judgment I gave up the notion altogether in any shape,
that some special reproach was attached to her name, I cannot tell; but
I had a shrinking from renouncing it, even when my reason so ordered me,
from a sort of conscience or prejudice, I think up to 1843. Moreover, at
least during the Tract Movement, I thought the essence of her offence to
consist in the honours which she paid to the Blessed Virgin and the
Saints; and the more I grew in devotion, both to the Saints and to our
Lady, the more impatient was I at the Roman practices, as if those
glorified creations of God must be gravely shocked, if pain could be
theirs, at the undue veneration of which they were the objects.

On the other hand, Hurrell Froude in his familiar conversations was
always tending to rub the idea out of my mind. In a passage of one of
his letters from abroad, alluding, I suppose, to what I used to say in
opposition to him, he observes; "I think people are injudicious who talk
against the Roman Catholics for worshipping Saints, and honouring the
Virgin and images, &c. These things may perhaps be idolatrous; I cannot
make up my mind about it; but to my mind it is the Carnival that is real
practical idolatry, as it is written, 'the people sat down to eat and
drink, and rose up to play.'" The Carnival, I observe in passing, is, in
fact, one of those very excesses, to which, for at least three
centuries, religious Catholics have ever opposed themselves, as we see
in the life of St. Philip, to say nothing of the present day; but this
we did not then know. Moreover, from Froude I learned to admire the
great medieval Pontiffs; and, of course, when I had come to consider the
Council of Trent to be the turning-point of the history of Christian
Rome, I found myself as free, as I was rejoiced, to speak in their
praise. Then, when I was abroad, the sight of so many great places,
venerable shrines, and noble churches, much impressed my imagination.
And my heart was touched also. Making an expedition on foot across some
wild country in Sicily, at six in the morning, I came upon a small
church; I heard voices, and I looked in. It was crowded, and the
congregation was singing. Of course it was the mass, though I did not
know it at the time. And, in my weary days at Palermo, I was not
ungrateful for the comfort which I had received in frequenting the
churches; nor did I ever forget it. Then, again, her zealous maintenance
of the doctrine and the rule of celibacy, which I recognized as
Apostolic, and her faithful agreement with Antiquity in so many other
points which were dear to me, was an argument as well as a plea in
favour of the great Church of Rome. Thus I learned to have tender
feelings towards her; but still my reason was not affected at all. My
judgment was against her, when viewed as an institution, as truly as it
ever had been.

This conflict between reason and affection I expressed in one of the
early Tracts, published July, 1834. "Considering the high gifts and the
strong claims of the Church of Rome and its dependencies on our
admiration, reverence, love, and gratitude; how could we withstand it,
as we do, how could we refrain from being melted into tenderness, and
rushing into communion with it, but for the words of Truth itself, which
bid us prefer It to the whole world? 'He that loveth father or mother
more than Me, is not worthy of me.' How could 'we learn to be severe,
and execute judgment,' but for the warning of Moses against even a
divinely-gifted teacher, who should preach new gods; and the anathema of
St. Paul even against Angels and Apostles, who should bring in a new
doctrine?"--_Records_, No. 24. My feeling was something like that of a
man, who is obliged in a court of justice to bear witness against a
friend; or like my own now, when I have said, and shall say, so many
things on which I had rather be silent.

As a matter, then, of simple conscience, though it went against my
feelings, I felt it to be a duty to protest against the Church of Rome.
But besides this, it was a duty, because the prescription of such a
protest was a living principle of my own Church, as expressed not simply
in a _catena_, but by a _consensus_ of her divines, and by the voice of
her people. Moreover, such a protest was necessary as an integral
portion of her controversial basis; for I adopted the argument of
Bernard Gilpin, that Protestants "were _not able_ to give any _firm and
solid_ reason of the separation besides this, to wit, that the Pope is
Antichrist." But while I thus thought such a protest to be based upon
truth, and to be a religious duty, and a rule of Anglicanism, and a
necessity of the case, I did not at all like the work. Hurrell Froude
attacked me for doing it; and, besides, I felt that my language had a
vulgar and rhetorical look about it. I believed, and really measured, my
words, when I used them; but I knew that I had a temptation, on the
other hand, to say against Rome as much as ever I could, in order to
protect myself against the charge of Popery.

And now I come to the very point, for which I have introduced the
subject of my feelings about Rome. I felt such confidence in the
substantial justice of the charges which I advanced against her, that I
considered them to be a safeguard and an assurance that no harm could
ever arise from the freest exposition of what I used to call Anglican
principles. All the world was astounded at what Froude and I were
saying: men said that it was sheer Popery. I answered, "True, we seem to
be making straight for it; but go on awhile, and you will come to a deep
chasm across the path, which makes real approximation impossible." And I
urged in addition, that many Anglican divines had been accused of
Popery, yet had died in their Anglicanism;--now, the ecclesiastical
principles which I professed, they had professed also; and the judgment
against Rome which they had formed, I had formed also. Whatever
deficiencies then had to be supplied in the existing Anglican system,
and however boldly I might point them out, any how that system would not
in the process be brought nearer to the special creed of Rome, and might
be mended in spite of her. In that very agreement of the two forms of
faith, close as it might seem, would really be found, on examination,
the elements and principles of an essential discordance.

It was with this absolute persuasion on my mind that I fancied that
there could be no rashness in giving to the world in fullest measure the
teaching and the writings of the Fathers. I thought that the Church of
England was substantially founded upon them. I did not know all that the
Fathers had said, but I felt that, even when their tenets happened to
differ from the Anglican, no harm could come of reporting them. I said
out what I was clear they had said; I spoke vaguely and imperfectly, of
what I thought they said, or what some of them had said. Any how, no
harm could come of bending the crooked stick the other way, in the
process of straightening it; it was impossible to break it. If there was
any thing in the Fathers of a startling character, this would be only
for a time; it would admit of explanation, or it might suggest something
profitable to Anglicans; it could not lead to Rome. I express this view
of the matter in a passage of the Preface to the first volume, which I
edited, of the Library of the Fathers. Speaking of the strangeness at
first sight, in the judgment of the present day, of some of their
principles and opinions, I bid the reader go forward hopefully, and not
indulge his criticism till he knows more about them, than he will learn
at the outset. "Since the evil," I say, "is in the nature of the case
itself, we can do no more than have patience, and recommend patience to
others, and with the racer in the Tragedy, look forward steadily and
hopefully to the _event_, [Greek: tô telei pistin pherôn], when, as we
trust, all that is inharmonious and anomalous in the details, will at
length be practically smoothed."

Such was the position, such the defences, such the tactics, by which I
thought that it was both incumbent on us, and possible for us, to meet
that onset of Liberal principles, of which we were all in immediate
anticipation, whether in the Church or in the University. And during the
first year of the Tracts, the attack upon the University began. In
November, 1834, was sent to me by Dr. Hampden the second edition of his
Pamphlet, entitled, "Observations on Religious Dissent, with particular
reference to the use of religious tests in the University." In this
Pamphlet it was maintained, that "Religion is distinct from Theological
Opinion," pp. 1. 28. 30, &c.; that it is but a common prejudice to
identify theological propositions methodically deduced and stated, with
the simple religion of Christ, p. 1; that under Theological Opinion were
to be placed the Trinitarian doctrine, p. 27, and the Unitarian, p. 19;
that a dogma was a theological opinion formally insisted on, pp. 20, 21;
that speculation always left an opening for improvement, p. 22; that the
Church of England was not dogmatic in its spirit, though the wording of
its formularies might often carry the sound of dogmatism, p. 23.

I acknowledged the receipt of this work in the following letter:--

"The kindness which has led to your presenting me with your late
Pamphlet, encourages me to hope that you will forgive me, if I take the
opportunity it affords of expressing to you my very sincere and deep
regret that it has been published. Such an opportunity I could not let
slip without being unfaithful to my own serious thoughts on the subject.

"While I respect the tone of piety which the Pamphlet displays, I dare
not trust myself to put on paper my feelings about the principles
contained in it; tending as they do, in my opinion, altogether to make
shipwreck of Christian faith. I also lament, that, by its appearance,
the first step has been taken towards interrupting that peace and mutual
good understanding which has prevailed so long in this place, and which,
if once seriously disturbed, will be succeeded by dissensions the more
intractable, because justified in the minds of those who resist
innovation by a feeling of imperative duty."

Since that time Phaeton has got into the chariot of the sun; we, alas!
can only look on, and watch him down the steep of heaven. Meanwhile, the
lands, which he is passing over, suffer from his driving.

       *       *       *       *       *

Such was the commencement of the assault of Liberalism upon the old
orthodoxy of Oxford and England; and it could not have been broken, as
it was, for so long a time, had not a great change taken place in the
circumstances of that counter-movement which had already started with
the view of resisting it. For myself, I was not the person to take the
lead of a party; I never was, from first to last, more than a leading
author of a school; nor did I ever wish to be anything else. This is my
own account of the matter; and I say it, neither as intending to disown
the responsibility of what was done, or as if ungrateful to those who at
that time made more of me than I deserved, and did more for my sake and
at my bidding than I realized myself. I am giving my history from my own
point of sight, and it is as follows:--I had lived for ten years among
my personal friends; the greater part of the time, I had been
influenced, not influencing; and at no time have I acted on others,
without their acting upon me. As is the custom of a University, I had
lived with my private, nay, with some of my public, pupils, and with the
junior fellows of my College, without form or distance, on a footing of
equality. Thus it was through friends, younger, for the most part, than
myself, that my principles were spreading. They heard what I said in
conversation, and told it to others. Under-graduates in due time took
their degree, and became private tutors themselves. In their new
_status_, they in turn preached the opinions, with which they had
already become acquainted. Others went down to the country, and became
curates of parishes. Then they had down from London parcels of the
Tracts, and other publications. They placed them in the shops of local
booksellers, got them into newspapers, introduced them to clerical
meetings, and converted more or less their Rectors and their brother
curates. Thus the Movement, viewed with relation to myself, was but a
floating opinion; it was not a power. It never would have been a power,
if it had remained in my hands. Years after, a friend, writing to me in
remonstrance at the excesses, as he thought them, of my disciples,
applied to me my own verse about St. Gregory Nazianzen, "Thou couldst a
people raise, but couldst not rule." At the time that he wrote to me, I
had special impediments in the way of such an exercise of power; but at
no time could I exercise over others that authority, which under the
circumstances was imperatively required. My great principle ever was,
Live and let live. I never had the staidness or dignity necessary for a
leader. To the last I never recognized the hold I had over young men. Of
late years I have read and heard that they even imitated me in various
ways. I was quite unconscious of it, and I think my immediate friends
knew too well how disgusted I should be at such proceedings, to have the
heart to tell me. I felt great impatience at our being called a party,
and would not allow that we were such. I had a lounging, free-and-easy
way of carrying things on. I exercised no sufficient censorship upon the
Tracts. I did not confine them to the writings of such persons as agreed
in all things with myself; and, as to my own Tracts, I printed on them a
notice to the effect, that any one who pleased, might make what use he
would of them, and reprint them with alterations if he chose, under the
conviction that their main scope could not be damaged by such a process.
It was the same with me afterwards, as regards other publications. For
two years I furnished a certain number of sheets for the British Critic
from myself and my friends, while a gentleman was editor, a man of
splendid talent, who, however, was scarcely an acquaintance of mine, and
had no sympathy with the Tracts. When I was Editor myself, from 1838 to
1841, in my very first number I suffered to appear a critique
unfavorable to my work on Justification, which had been published a few
months before, from a feeling of propriety, because I had put the book
into the hands of the writer who so handled it. Afterwards I suffered an
article against the Jesuits to appear in it, of which I did not like the
tone. When I had to provide a curate for my new church at Littlemore, I
engaged a friend, by no fault of his, who, before he had entered into
his charge, preached a sermon, either in depreciation of baptismal
regeneration, or of Dr. Pusey's view of it. I showed a similar easiness
as to the Editors who helped me in the separate volumes of Fleury's
Church History; they were able, learned, and excellent men, but their
after-history has shown, how little my choice of them was influenced by
any notion I could have had of any intimate agreement of opinion between
them and myself. I shall have to make the same remark in its place
concerning the Lives of the English Saints, which subsequently appeared.
All this may seem inconsistent with what I have said of my fierceness. I
am not bound to account for it; but there have been men before me,
fierce in act, yet tolerant and moderate in their reasonings; at least,
so I read history. However, such was the case, and such its effect upon
the Tracts. These at first starting were short, hasty, and some of them
ineffective; and at the end of the year, when collected into a volume,
they had a slovenly appearance.

It was under these circumstances, that Dr. Pusey joined us. I had known
him well since 1827-8, and had felt for him an enthusiastic admiration,
I used to call him [Greek: ho megas]. His great learning, his immense
diligence, his scholarlike mind, his simple devotion to the cause of
religion, overcame me; and great of course was my joy, when in the last
days of 1833 he showed a disposition to make common cause with us. His
Tract on Fasting appeared as one of the series with the date of December
21. He was not, however, I think, fully associated in the Movement till
1835 and 1836, when he published his Tract on Baptism, and started the
Library of the Fathers. He at once gave to us a position and a name.
Without him we should have had little chance, especially at the early
date of 1834, of making any serious resistance to the Liberal
aggression. But Dr. Pusey was a Professor and Canon of Christ Church; he
had a vast influence in consequence of his deep religious seriousness,
the munificence of his charities, his Professorship, his family
connexions, and his easy relations with University authorities. He was
to the Movement all that Mr. Rose might have been, with that
indispensable addition, which was wanting to Mr. Rose, the intimate
friendship and the familiar daily society of the persons who had
commenced it. And he had that special claim on their attachment, which
lies in the living presence of a faithful and loyal affectionateness.
There was henceforth a man who could be the head and centre of the
zealous people in every part of the country, who were adopting the new
opinions; and not only so, but there was one who furnished the Movement
with a front to the world, and gained for it a recognition from other
parties in the University. In 1829, Mr. Froude, or Mr. Robert
Wilberforce, or Mr. Newman were but individuals; and, when they ranged
themselves in the contest of that year on the side of Sir Robert Inglis,
men on either side only asked with surprise how they got there, and
attached no significancy to the fact; but Dr. Pusey was, to use the
common expression, a host in himself; he was able to give a name, a
form, and a personality, to what was without him a sort of mob; and when
various parties had to meet together in order to resist the liberal acts
of the Government, we of the Movement took our place by right among

Such was the benefit which he conferred on the Movement externally; nor
were the internal advantages at all inferior to it. He was a man of
large designs; he had a hopeful, sanguine mind; he had no fear of
others; he was haunted by no intellectual perplexities. People are apt
to say that he was once nearer to the Catholic Church than he is now; I
pray God that he may be one day far nearer to the Catholic Church than
he was then; for I believe that, in his reason and judgment, all the
time that I knew him, he never was near to it at all. When I became a
Catholic, I was often asked, "What of Dr. Pusey?"; when I said that I
did not see symptoms of his doing as I had done, I was sometimes thought
uncharitable. If confidence in his position is, (as it is,) a first
essential in the leader of a party, this Dr. Pusey possessed
pre-eminently. The most remarkable instance of this, was his statement,
in one of his subsequent defences of the Movement, when moreover it had
advanced a considerable way in the direction of Rome, that among its
more hopeful peculiarities was its "stationariness." He made it in good
faith; it was his subjective view of it.

Dr. Pusey's influence was felt at once. He saw that there ought to be
more sobriety, more gravity, more careful pains, more sense of
responsibility in the Tracts and in the whole Movement. It was through
him that the character of the Tracts was changed. When he gave to us his
Tract on Fasting, he put his initials to it. In 1835 he published his
elaborate Treatise on Baptism, which was followed by other Tracts from
different authors, if not of equal learning, yet of equal power and
appositeness. The Catenas of Anglican divines, projected by me, which
occur in the Series were executed with a like aim at greater accuracy
and method. In 1836 he advertised his great project for a Translation of
the Fathers:--but I must return to myself. I am not writing the history
either of Dr. Pusey or of the Movement; but it is a pleasure to me to
have been able to introduce here reminiscences of the place which he
held in it, which have so direct a bearing on myself, that they are no
digression from my narrative.

       *       *       *       *       *

I suspect it was Dr. Pusey's influence and example which set me, and
made me set others, on the larger and more careful works in defence of
the principles of the Movement which followed in a course of
years,--some of them demanding and receiving from their authors, such
elaborate treatment that they did not make their appearance till both
its temper and its fortunes had changed. I set about a work at once; one
in which was brought out with precision the relation in which we stood
to the Church of Rome. We could not move a step in comfort, till this
was done. It was of absolute necessity and a plain duty from the first,
to provide as soon as possible a large statement, which would encourage
and reassure our friends, and repel the attacks of our opponents. A cry
was heard on all sides of us, that the Tracts and the writings of the
Fathers would lead us to become Catholics, before we were aware of it.
This was loudly expressed by members of the Evangelical party, who in
1836 had joined us in making a protest in Convocation against a
memorable appointment of the Prime Minister. These clergymen even then
avowed their desire, that the next time they were brought up to Oxford
to give a vote, it might be in order to put down the Popery of the
Movement. There was another reason still, and quite as important.
Monsignore Wiseman, with the acuteness and zeal which might be expected
from that great Prelate, had anticipated what was coming, had returned
to England by 1836, had delivered Lectures in London on the doctrines of
Catholicism, and created an impression through the country, shared in by
ourselves, that we had for our opponents in controversy, not only our
brethren, but our hereditary foes. These were the circumstances, which
led to my publication of "The Prophetical office of the Church viewed
relatively to Romanism and Popular Protestantism."

This work employed me for three years, from the beginning of 1834 to the
end of 1836, and was published in 1837. It was composed, after a careful
consideration and comparison of the principal Anglican divines of the
17th century. It was first written in the shape of controversial
correspondence with a learned French Priest; then it was re-cast, and
delivered in Lectures at St. Mary's; lastly, with considerable
retrenchments and additions, it was rewritten for publication.

It attempts to trace out the rudimental lines on which Christian faith
and teaching proceed, and to use them as means of determining the
relation of the Roman and Anglican systems to each other. In this way it
shows that to confuse the two together is impossible, and that the
Anglican can be as little said to tend to the Roman, as the Roman to the
Anglican. The spirit of the Volume is not so gentle to the Church of
Rome, as Tract 71 published the year before; on the contrary, it is very
fierce; and this I attribute to the circumstance that the Volume is
theological and didactic, whereas the Tract, being controversial,
assumes as little and grants as much as possible on the points in
dispute, and insists on points of agreement as well as of difference. A
further and more direct reason is, that in my Volume I deal with
"Romanism" (as I call it), not so much in its formal decrees and in the
substance of its creed, as in its traditional action and its authorized
teaching as represented by its prominent writers;--whereas the Tract is
written as if discussing the differences of the Churches with a view to
a reconciliation between them. There is a further reason too, which I
will state presently.

But this Volume had a larger scope than that of opposing the Roman
system. It was an attempt at commencing a system of theology on the
Anglican idea, and based upon Anglican authorities. Mr. Palmer, about
the same time, was projecting a work of a similar nature in his own way.
It was published, I think, under the title, "A Treatise on the Christian
Church." As was to be expected from the author, it was a most learned,
most careful composition; and in its form, I should say, polemical. So
happily at least did he follow the logical method of the Roman Schools,
that Father Perrone in his Treatise on dogmatic theology, recognized in
him a combatant of the true cast, and saluted him as a foe worthy of
being vanquished. Other soldiers in that field he seems to have thought
little better than the _Lanzknechts_ of the middle ages, and, I dare
say, with very good reason. When I knew that excellent and kind-hearted
man at Rome at a later time, he allowed me to put him to ample penance
for those light thoughts of me, which he had once had, by encroaching on
his valuable time with my theological questions. As to Mr. Palmer's
book, it was one which no Anglican could write but himself,--in no
sense, if I recollect aright, a tentative work. The ground of
controversy was cut into squares, and then every objection had its
answer. This is the proper method to adopt in teaching authoritatively
young men; and the work in fact was intended for students in theology.
My own book, on the other hand, was of a directly tentative and
empirical character. I wished to build up an Anglican theology out of
the stores which already lay cut and hewn upon the ground, the past toil
of great divines. To do this could not be the work of one man; much
less, could it be at once received into Anglican theology, however well
it was done. This I fully recognized; and, while I trusted that my
statements of doctrine would turn out to be true and important, still I
wrote, to use the common phrase, "under correction."

There was another motive for my publishing, of a personal nature, which
I think I should mention. I felt then, and all along felt, that there
was an intellectual cowardice in not finding a basis in reason for my
belief, and a moral cowardice in not avowing that basis. I should have
felt myself less than a man, if I did not bring it out, whatever it was.
This is one principal reason why I wrote and published the "Prophetical
Office." It was from the same feeling, that in the spring of 1836, at a
meeting of residents on the subject of the struggle then proceeding
against a Whig appointment, when some one wanted us all merely to act on
college and conservative grounds (as I understood him), with as few
published statements as possible, I answered, that the person whom we
were resisting had committed himself in writing, and that we ought to
commit ourselves too. This again was a main reason for the publication
of Tract 90. Alas! it was my portion for whole years to remain without
any satisfactory basis for my religious profession, in a state of moral
sickness, neither able to acquiesce in Anglicanism, nor able to go to
Rome. But I bore it, till in course of time my way was made clear to me.
If here it be objected to me, that as time went on, I often in my
writings hinted at things which I did not fully bring out, I submit for
consideration whether this occurred except when I was in great
difficulties, how to speak, or how to be silent, with due regard for the
position of mind or the feelings of others. However, I may have an
opportunity to say more on this subject. But to return to the
"Prophetical Office."

I thus speak in the Introduction to my Volume:--

"It is proposed," I say, "to offer helps towards the formation of a
recognized Anglican theology in one of its departments. The present
state of our divinity is as follows: the most vigorous, the clearest,
the most fertile minds, have through God's mercy been employed in the
service of our Church: minds too as reverential and holy, and as fully
imbued with Ancient Truth, and as well versed in the writings of the
Fathers, as they were intellectually gifted. This is God's great mercy
indeed, for which we must ever be thankful. Primitive doctrine has been
explored for us in every direction, and the original principles of the
Gospel and the Church patiently brought to light. But one thing is still
wanting: our champions and teachers have lived in stormy times:
political and other influences have acted upon them variously in their
day, and have since obstructed a careful consolidation of their
judgments. We have a vast inheritance, but no inventory of our
treasures. All is given us in profusion; it remains for us to catalogue,
sort, distribute, select, harmonize, and complete. We have more than we
know how to use; stores of learning, but little that is precise and
serviceable; Catholic truth and individual opinion, first principles and
the guesses of genius, all mingled in the same works, and requiring to
be discriminated. We meet with truths overstated or misdirected, matters
of detail variously taken, facts incompletely proved or applied, and
rules inconsistently urged or discordantly interpreted. Such indeed is
the state of every deep philosophy in its first stages, and therefore of
theological knowledge. What we need at present for our Church's
well-being, is not invention, nor originality, nor sagacity, nor even
learning in our divines, at least in the first place, though all gifts
of God are in a measure needed, and never can be unseasonable when used
religiously, but we need peculiarly a sound judgment, patient thought,
discrimination, a comprehensive mind, an abstinence from all private
fancies and caprices and personal tastes,--in a word, Divine Wisdom."

The subject of the Volume is the doctrine of the _Via Media_, a name
which had already been applied to the Anglican system by writers of
repute. It is an expressive title, but not altogether satisfactory,
because it is at first sight negative. This had been the reason of my
dislike to the word "Protestant;" viz. it did not denote the profession
of any particular religion at all, and was compatible with infidelity. A
_Via Media_ was but a receding from extremes,--therefore it needed to be
drawn out into a definite shape and character: before it could have
claims on our respect, it must first be shown to be one, intelligible,
and consistent. This was the first condition of any reasonable treatise
on the _Via Media_. The second condition, and necessary too, was not in
my power. I could only hope that it would one day be fulfilled. Even if
the _Via Media_ were ever so positive a religious system, it was not as
yet objective and real; it had no original any where of which it was the
representative. It was at present a paper religion. This I confess in my
Introduction; I say, "Protestantism and Popery are real religions ...
but the _Via Media_, viewed as an integral system, has scarcely had
existence except on paper." I grant the objection, though I endeavour to
lessen it:--"It still remains to be tried, whether what is called
Anglo-Catholicism, the religion of Andrewes, Laud, Hammond, Butler, and
Wilson, is capable of being professed, acted on, and maintained on a
large sphere of action, or whether it be a mere modification or
transition-state of either Romanism or popular Protestantism." I trusted
that some day it would prove to be a substantive religion.

Lest I should be misunderstood, let me observe that this hesitation
about the validity of the theory of the _Via Media_ implied no doubt of
the three fundamental points on which it was based, as I have described
them above, dogma, the sacramental system, and anti-Romanism.

Other investigations which had to be followed up were of a still more
tentative character. The basis of the _Via Media_, consisting of the
three elementary points, which I have just mentioned, was clear enough;
but, not only had the house itself to be built upon them, but it had
also to be furnished, and it is not wonderful if, after building it,
both I and others erred in detail in determining what its furniture
should be, what was consistent with the style of building, and what was
in itself desirable. I will explain what I mean.

I had brought out in the "Prophetical Office" in what the Roman and the
Anglican systems differed from each other, but less distinctly in what
they agreed. I had indeed enumerated the Fundamentals, common to both,
in the following passage:--"In both systems the same Creeds are
acknowledged. Besides other points in common, we both hold, that certain
doctrines are necessary to be believed for salvation; we both believe in
the doctrines of the Trinity, Incarnation, and Atonement; in original
sin; in the necessity of regeneration; in the supernatural grace of the
Sacraments; in the Apostolical succession; in the obligation of faith
and obedience, and in the eternity of future punishment,"--pp. 55, 56.
So much I had said, but I had not said enough. This enumeration implied
a great many more points of agreement than were found in those very
Articles which were fundamental. If the two Churches were thus the same
in fundamentals, they were also one and the same in such plain
consequences as were contained in those fundamentals and in such natural
observances as outwardly represented them. It was an Anglican principle
that "the abuse of a thing doth not take away the lawful use of it;" and
an Anglican Canon in 1603 had declared that the English Church had no
purpose to forsake all that was held in the Churches of Italy, France,
and Spain, and reverenced those ceremonies and particular points which
were Apostolic. Excepting then such exceptional matters, as are implied
in this avowal, whether they were many or few, all these Churches were
evidently to be considered as one with the Anglican. The Catholic Church
in all lands had been one from the first for many centuries; then,
various portions had followed their own way to the injury, but not to
the destruction, whether of truth or of charity. These portions or
branches were mainly three:--the Greek, Latin, and Anglican. Each of
these inherited the early undivided Church _in solido_ as its own
possession. Each branch was identical with that early undivided Church,
and in the unity of that Church it had unity with the other branches.
The three branches agreed together in _all but_ their later accidental
errors. Some branches had retained in detail portions of Apostolical
truth and usage, which the others had not; and these portions might be
and should be appropriated again by the others which had let them slip.
Thus, the middle age belonged to the Anglican Church, and much more did
the middle age of England. The Church of the 12th century was the Church
of the 19th. Dr. Howley sat in the seat of St. Thomas the Martyr; Oxford
was a medieval University. Saving our engagements to Prayer Book and
Articles, we might breathe and live and act and speak, as in the
atmosphere and climate of Henry III.'s day, or the Confessor's, or of
Alfred's. And we ought to be indulgent to all that Rome taught now, as
to what Rome taught then, saving our protest. We might boldly welcome,
even what we did not ourselves think right to adopt. And, when we were
obliged on the contrary boldly to denounce, we should do so with pain,
not with exultation. By very reason of our protest, which we had made,
and made _ex animo_, we could agree to differ. What the members of the
Bible Society did on the basis of Scripture, we could do on the basis of
the Church; Trinitarian and Unitarian were further apart than Roman and
Anglican. Thus we had a real wish to co-operate with Rome in all lawful
things, if she would let us, and if the rules of our own Church let us;
and we thought there was no better way towards the restoration of
doctrinal purity and unity. And we thought that Rome was not committed
by her formal decrees to all that she actually taught: and again, if her
disputants had been unfair to us, or her rulers tyrannical, we bore in
mind that on our side too there had been rancour and slander in our
controversial attacks upon her, and violence in our political measures.
As to ourselves being direct instruments in improving her belief or
practice, I used to say, "Look at home; let us first, (or at least let
us the while,) supply our own shortcomings, before we attempt to be
physicians to any one else." This is very much the spirit of Tract 71,
to which I referred just now. I am well aware that there is a paragraph
inconsistent with it in the Prospectus to the Library of the Fathers;
but I do not consider myself responsible for it. Indeed, I have no
intention whatever of implying that Dr. Pusey concurred in the
ecclesiastical theory, which I have been now drawing out; nor that I
took it up myself except by degrees in the course of ten years. It was
necessarily the growth of time. In fact, hardly any two persons, who
took part in the Movement, agreed in their view of the limit to which
our general principles might religiously be carried.

And now I have said enough on what I consider to have been the general
objects of the various works, which I wrote, edited, or prompted in the
years which I am reviewing. I wanted to bring out in a substantive form
a living Church of England, in a position proper to herself, and founded
on distinct principles; as far as paper could do it, as far as earnestly
preaching it and influencing others towards it, could tend to make it a
fact;--a living Church, made of flesh and blood, with voice, complexion,
and motion and action, and a will of its own. I believe I had no private
motive, and no personal aim. Nor did I ask for more than "a fair stage
and no favour," nor expect the work would be accomplished in my days;
but I thought that enough would be secured to continue it in the future,
under, perhaps, more hopeful circumstances and prospects than the

I will mention in illustration some of the principal works, doctrinal
and historical, which originated in the object which I have stated.

I wrote my Essay on Justification in 1837; it was aimed at the Lutheran
dictum that justification by faith only was the cardinal doctrine of
Christianity. I considered that this doctrine was either a paradox or a
truism,--a paradox in Luther's mouth, a truism in Melanchthon's. I
thought that the Anglican Church followed Melanchthon, and that in
consequence between Rome and Anglicanism, between high Church and low
Church, there was no real intellectual difference on the point. I wished
to fill up a ditch, the work of man. In this Volume again, I express my
desire to build up a system of theology out of the Anglican divines, and
imply that my dissertation was a tentative Inquiry. I speak in the
Preface of "offering suggestions towards a work, which must be uppermost
in the mind of every true son of the English Church at this day,--the
consolidation of a theological system, which, built upon those
formularies, to which all clergymen are bound, may tend to inform,
persuade, and absorb into itself religious minds, which hitherto have
fancied, that, on the peculiar Protestant questions, they were seriously
opposed to each other."--P. vii.

In my University Sermons there is a series of discussions upon the
subject of Faith and Reason; these again were the tentative commencement
of a grave and necessary work, viz. an inquiry into the ultimate basis
of religious faith, prior to the distinction into Creeds.

In like manner in a Pamphlet, which I published in the summer of 1838,
is an attempt at placing the doctrine of the Real Presence on an
intellectual basis. The fundamental idea is consonant to that to which I
had been so long attached: it is the denial of the existence of space
except as a subjective idea of our minds.

The Church of the Fathers is one of the earliest productions of the
Movement, and appeared in numbers in the British Magazine, being written
with the aim of introducing the religious sentiments, views, and customs
of the first ages into the modern Church of England.

The Translation of Fleury's Church History was commenced under these
circumstances:--I was fond of Fleury for a reason which I express in the
Advertisement; because it presented a sort of photograph of
ecclesiastical history without any comment upon it. In the event, that
simple representation of the early centuries had a good deal to do with
unsettling me in my Anglicanism; but how little I could anticipate this,
will be seen in the fact that the publication of Fleury was a favourite
scheme with Mr. Rose. He proposed it to me twice, between the years 1834
and 1837; and I mention it as one out of many particulars curiously
illustrating how truly my change of opinion arose, not from foreign
influences, but from the working of my own mind, and the accidents
around me. The date, from which the portion actually translated began,
was determined by the Publisher on reasons with which we were not

Another historical work, but drawn from original sources, was given to
the world by my old friend Mr. Bowden, being a Life of Pope Gregory VII.
I need scarcely recall to those who have read it, the power and the
liveliness of the narrative. This composition was the author's
relaxation, on evenings and in his summer vacations, from his ordinary
engagements in London. It had been suggested to him originally by me, at
the instance of Hurrell Froude.

The Series of the Lives of the English Saints was projected at a later
period, under circumstances which I shall have in the sequel to
describe. Those beautiful compositions have nothing in them, as far as I
recollect, simply inconsistent with the general objects which I have
been assigning to my labours in these years, though the immediate
occasion which led to them, and the tone in which they were written, had
little that was congenial with Anglicanism.

At a comparatively early date I drew up the Tract on the Roman Breviary.
It frightened my own friends on its first appearance; and several years
afterwards, when younger men began to translate for publication the four
volumes _in extenso_, they were dissuaded from doing so by advice to
which from a sense of duty they listened. It was an apparent accident,
which introduced me to the knowledge of that most wonderful and most
attractive monument of the devotion of saints. On Hurrell Froude's
death, in 1836, I was asked to select one of his books as a keepsake. I
selected Butler's Analogy; finding that it had been already chosen, I
looked with some perplexity along the shelves as they stood before me,
when an intimate friend at my elbow said, "Take that." It was the
Breviary which Hurrell had had with him at Barbadoes. Accordingly I took
it, studied it, wrote my Tract from it, and have it on my table in
constant use till this day.

That dear and familiar companion, who thus put the Breviary into my
hands, is still in the Anglican Church. So, too, is that early venerated
long-loved friend, together with whom I edited a work which, more
perhaps than any other, caused disturbance and annoyance in the Anglican
world,--Froude's Remains; yet, however judgments might run as to the
prudence of publishing it, I never heard any one impute to Mr. Keble the
very shadow of dishonesty or treachery towards his Church in so acting.

The annotated Translation of the Treatises of St. Athanasius was of
course in no sense of a tentative character; it belongs to another order
of thought. This historico-dogmatic work employed me for years. I had
made preparations for following it up with a doctrinal history of the
heresies which succeeded to the Arian.

I should make mention also of the British Critic. I was Editor of it for
three years, from July 1838 to July 1841. My writers belonged to various
schools, some to none at all. The subjects are various,--classical,
academical, political, critical, and artistic, as well as theological,
and upon the Movement none are to be found which do not keep quite clear
of advocating the cause of Rome.

       *       *       *       *       *

So I went on for years up to 1841. It was, in a human point of view, the
happiest time of my life. I was truly at home. I had in one of my
volumes appropriated to myself the words of Bramhall, "Bees, by the
instinct of nature, do love their hives, and birds their nests." I did
not suppose that such sunshine would last, though I knew not what would
be its termination. It was the time of plenty, and, during its seven
years, I tried to lay up as much as I could for the dearth which was to
follow it. We prospered and spread. I have spoken of the doings of these
years, since I was a Catholic, in a passage, part of which I will here

"From beginnings so small," I said, "from elements of thought so
fortuitous, with prospects so unpromising, the Anglo-Catholic party
suddenly became a power in the National Church, and an object of alarm
to her rulers and friends. Its originators would have found it difficult
to say what they aimed at of a practical kind: rather, they put forth
views and principles for their own sake, because they were true, as if
they were obliged to say them; and, as they might be themselves
surprised at their earnestness in uttering them, they had as great cause
to be surprised at the success which attended their propagation. And, in
fact, they could only say that those doctrines were in the air; that to
assert was to prove, and that to explain was to persuade; and that the
Movement in which they were taking part was the birth of a crisis rather
than of a place. In a very few years a school of opinion was formed,
fixed in its principles, indefinite and progressive in their range; and
it extended itself into every part of the country. If we inquire what
the world thought of it, we have still more to raise our wonder; for,
not to mention the excitement it caused in England, the Movement and its
party-names were known to the police of Italy and to the back-woodmen of
America. And so it proceeded, getting stronger and stronger every year,
till it came into collision with the Nation, and that Church of the
Nation, which it began by professing especially to serve."

The greater its success, the nearer was that collision at hand. The
first threatenings of what was coming were heard in 1838. At that time,
my Bishop in a Charge made some light animadversions, but they _were_
animadversions, on the Tracts for the Times. At once I offered to stop
them. What took place on the occasion I prefer to state in the words, in
which I related it in a Pamphlet addressed to him in a later year, when
the blow actually came down upon me.

"In your Lordship's Charge for 1838," I said, "an allusion was made to
the Tracts for the Times. Some opponents of the Tracts said that you
treated them with undue indulgence.... I wrote to the Archdeacon on the
subject, submitting the Tracts entirely to your Lordship's disposal.
What I thought about your Charge will appear from the words I then used
to him. I said, 'A Bishop's lightest word _ex cathedrâ_ is heavy. His
judgment on a book cannot be light. It is a rare occurrence.' And I
offered to withdraw any of the Tracts over which I had control, if I
were informed which were those to which your Lordship had objections. I
afterwards wrote to your Lordship to this effect, that 'I trusted I
might say sincerely, that I should feel a more lively pleasure in
knowing that I was submitting myself to your Lordship's expressed
judgment in a matter of that kind, than I could have even in the widest
circulation of the volumes in question.' Your Lordship did not think it
necessary to proceed to such a measure, but I felt, and always have
felt, that, if ever you determined on it, I was bound to obey."

That day at length came, and I conclude this portion of my narrative,
with relating the circumstances of it.

       *       *       *       *       *

From the time that I had entered upon the duties of Public Tutor at my
College, when my doctrinal views were very different from what they were
in 1841, I had meditated a comment upon the Articles. Then, when the
Movement was in its swing, friends had said to me, "What will you make
of the Articles?" but I did not share the apprehension which their
question implied. Whether, as time went on, I should have been forced,
by the necessities of the original theory of the Movement, to put on
paper the speculations which I had about them, I am not able to
conjecture. The actual cause of my doing so, in the beginning of 1841,
was the restlessness, actual and prospective, of those who neither liked
the _Via Media_, nor my strong judgment against Rome. I had been
enjoined, I think by my Bishop, to keep these men straight, and I wished
so to do: but their tangible difficulty was subscription to the
Articles; and thus the question of the Articles came before me. It was
thrown in our teeth; "How can you manage to sign the Articles? they are
directly against Rome." "Against Rome?" I made answer, "What do you mean
by 'Rome?'" and then I proceeded to make distinctions, of which I shall
now give an account.

By "Roman doctrine" might be meant one of three things: 1, the _Catholic
teaching_ of the early centuries; or 2, the _formal dogmas of Rome_ as
contained in the later Councils, especially the Council of Trent, and as
condensed in the Creed of Pope Pius IV.; 3, the _actual popular beliefs
and usages_ sanctioned by Rome in the countries in communion with it,
over and above the dogmas; and these I called "dominant errors." Now
Protestants commonly thought that in all three senses, "Roman doctrine"
was condemned in the Articles: I thought that the _Catholic teaching_
was not condemned; that the _dominant errors_ were; and as to the
_formal dogmas_, that some were, some were not, and that the line had to
be drawn between them. Thus, 1. The use of Prayers for the dead was a
Catholic doctrine,--not condemned in the Articles; 2. The prison of
Purgatory was a Roman dogma,--which was condemned in them; but the
infallibility of Ecumenical Councils was a Roman dogma,--not condemned;
and 3. The fire of Purgatory was an authorized and popular error, not a
dogma,--which was condemned.

Further, I considered that the difficulties, felt by the persons whom I
have mentioned, mainly lay in their mistaking, 1, Catholic teaching,
which was not condemned in the Articles, for Roman dogma which was
condemned; and 2, Roman dogma, which was not condemned in the Articles,
for dominant error which was. If they went further than this, I had
nothing more to say to them.

A further motive which I had for my attempt, was the desire to ascertain
the ultimate points of contrariety between the Roman and Anglican
creeds, and to make them as few as possible. I thought that each creed
was obscured and misrepresented by a dominant circumambient "Popery" and

The main thesis then of my Essay was this:--the Articles do not oppose
Catholic teaching; they but partially oppose Roman dogma; they for the
most part oppose the dominant errors of Rome. And the problem was, as I
have said, to draw the line as to what they allowed and what they

Such being the object which I had in view, what were my prospects of
widening and of defining their meaning? The prospect was encouraging;
there was no doubt at all of the elasticity of the Articles: to take a
palmary instance, the seventeenth was assumed by one party to be
Lutheran, by another Calvinistic, though the two interpretations were
contradictory of each other; why then should not other Articles be drawn
up with a vagueness of an equally intense character? I wanted to
ascertain what was the limit of that elasticity in the direction of
Roman dogma. But next, I had a way of inquiry of my own, which I state
without defending. I instanced it afterwards in my Essay on Doctrinal
Development. That work, I believe, I have not read since I published it,
and I do not doubt at all I have made many mistakes in it;--partly, from
my ignorance of the details of doctrine, as the Church of Rome holds
them, but partly from my impatience to clear as large a range for the
_principle_ of doctrinal Development (waiving the question of historical
_fact_) as was consistent with the strict Apostolicity and identity of
the Catholic Creed. In like manner, as regards the 39 Articles, my
method of inquiry was to leap _in medias res_. I wished to institute an
inquiry how far, in critical fairness, the text _could_ be opened; I was
aiming far more at ascertaining what a man who subscribed it might hold
than what he must, so that my conclusions were negative rather than
positive. It was but a first essay. And I made it with the full
recognition and consciousness, which I had already expressed in my
Prophetical Office, as regards the _Via Media_, that I was making only
"a first approximation to the required solution;"--"a series of
illustrations supplying hints for the removal" of a difficulty, and with
full acknowledgment "that in minor points, whether in question of fact
or of judgment, there was room for difference or error of opinion," and
that I "should not be ashamed to own a mistake, if it were proved
against me, nor reluctant to bear the just blame of it."--Proph. Off. p.

I will add, I was embarrassed in consequence of my wish to go as far as
was possible in interpreting the Articles in the direction of Roman
dogma, without disclosing what I was doing to the parties whose doubts I
was meeting; who, if they understood at once the full extent of the
licence which the Articles admitted, might be thereby encouraged to
proceed still further than at present they found in themselves any call
to go.

1. But in the way of such an attempt comes the prompt objection that the
Articles were actually drawn up against "Popery," and therefore it was
transcendently absurd and dishonest to suppose that Popery, in any
shape,--patristic belief, Tridentine dogma, or popular corruption
authoritatively sanctioned,--would be able to take refuge under their
text. This premiss I denied. Not any religious doctrine at all, but a
political principle, was the primary English idea of "Popery" at the
date of the Reformation. And what was that political principle, and how
could it best be suppressed in England? What was the great question in
the days of Henry and Elizabeth? The _Supremacy_;--now, was I saying one
single word in favour of the Supremacy of the Holy See, in favour of the
foreign jurisdiction? No, I did not believe in it myself. Did Henry
VIII. religiously hold Justification by faith only? did he disbelieve
Purgatory? Was Elizabeth zealous for the marriage of the Clergy? or had
she a conscience against the Mass? The Supremacy of the Pope was the
essence of the "Popery" to which, at the time of the composition of the
Articles, the Supreme Head or Governor of the English Church was so
violently hostile.

2. But again I said this:--let "Popery" mean what it would in the mouths
of the compilers of the Articles, let it even, for argument's sake,
include the doctrines of that Tridentine Council, which was not yet over
when the Articles were drawn up, and against which they could not be
simply directed, yet, consider, what was the object of the Government in
their imposition? merely to get rid of "Popery?" No; it had the further
object of gaining the "Papists." What then was the best way to induce
reluctant or wavering minds, and these, I supposed, were the majority,
to give in their adhesion to the new symbol? how had the Arians drawn up
their Creeds? was it not on the principle of using vague ambiguous
language, which to the subscribers would seem to bear a Catholic sense,
but which, when worked out on the long run, would prove to be heterodox?
Accordingly, there was great antecedent probability, that, fierce as the
Articles might look at first sight, their bark would prove worse than
their bite. I say antecedent probability, for to what extent that
surmise might be true, could only be ascertained by investigation.

3. But a consideration came up at once, which threw light on this
surmise:--what if it should turn out that the very men who drew up the
Articles, in the very act of doing so, had avowed, or rather in one of
those very Articles themselves had imposed on subscribers, a number of
those very "Papistical" doctrines, which they were now thought to deny,
as part and parcel of that very Protestantism, which they were now
thought to consider divine? and this was the fact, and I showed it in my

Let the reader observe:--the 35th Article says: "The second Book of
Homilies doth contain _a godly and wholesome doctrine, and necessary
for_ these times, as doth the former Book of Homilies." Here the
_doctrine_ of the Homilies is recognized as godly and wholesome, and
concurrence in that recognition is imposed on all subscribers of the
Articles. Let us then turn to the Homilies, and see what this godly
doctrine is: I quoted from them to the following effect:

1. They declare that the so-called "apocryphal" book of Tobit is the
teaching of the Holy Ghost, and is Scripture.

2. That the so-called "apocryphal" book of Wisdom is Scripture, and the
infallible and undeceivable word of God.

3. That the Primitive Church, next to the Apostles' time, and, as they
imply, for almost 700 years, is no doubt most pure.

4. That the Primitive Church is specially to be followed.

5. That the Four first General Councils belong to the Primitive Church.

6. That there are Six Councils which are allowed and received by all

7. Again, they speak of a certain truth, and say that it is declared by
God's word, the sentences of the ancient doctors, and judgment of the
Primitive Church.

8. Of the learned and holy Bishops and doctors of the Church of the
first eight centuries being of great authority and credit with the

9. Of the declaration of Christ and His Apostles and all the rest of the
Holy Fathers.

10. Of the authority both of Scripture and also of Augustine.

11. Of Augustine, Chrysostom, Ambrose, Jerome, and about thirty other
Fathers, to some of whom they give the title of "Saint," to others of
"ancient Catholic Fathers and doctors, &c."

12. They declare that, not only the holy Apostles and disciples of
Christ, but the godly Fathers also, before and since Christ, were endued
without doubt with the Holy Ghost.

13. That the ancient Catholic Fathers say that the "Lord's Supper" is
the salve of immortality, the sovereign preservative against death, the
food of immortality, the healthful grace.

14. That the Lord's Blessed Body and Blood are received under the form
of bread and wine.

15. That the meat in the Sacrament is an invisible meat and a ghostly

16. That the holy Body and Blood of thy God ought to be touched with the

17. That Ordination is a Sacrament.

18. That Matrimony is a Sacrament.

19. That there are other Sacraments besides "Baptism and the Lord's
Supper," though not "such as" they.

20. That the souls of the Saints are reigning in joy and in heaven with

21. That alms-deeds purge the soul from the infection and filthy spots
of sin, and are a precious medicine, an inestimable jewel.

22. That mercifulness wipes out and washes away sins, as salves and
remedies to heal sores and grievous diseases.

23. That the duty of fasting is a truth more manifest than it should
need to be proved.

24. That fasting, used with prayer, is of great efficacy and weigheth
much with God; so the Angel Raphael told Tobias.

25. That the puissant and mighty Emperor Theodosius was, in the
Primitive Church which was most holy and godly, excommunicated by St.

26. That Constantine, Bishop of Rome, did condemn Philippicus, then
Emperor, not without a cause indeed, but very justly.

Putting altogether aside the question how far these separate theses came
under the matter to which subscription was to be made, it was quite
plain, that in the minds of the men who wrote the Homilies, and who thus
incorporated them into the Anglican system of doctrine, there was no
such nice discrimination between the Catholic and the Protestant faith,
no such clear recognition of formal Protestant principles and tenets, no
such accurate definition of "Roman doctrine," as is received at the
present day:--hence great probability accrued to my presentiment, that
the Articles were tolerant, not only of what I called "Catholic
teaching," but of much that was "Roman."

4. And here was another reason against the notion that the Articles
directly attacked the Roman dogmas as declared at Trent and as
promulgated by Pius the Fourth:--the Council of Trent was not over, nor
its Canons promulgated at the date when the Articles were drawn up[5],
so that those Articles must be aiming at something else? What was that
something else? The Homilies tell us: the Homilies are the best comment
upon the Articles. Let us turn to the Homilies, and we shall find from
first to last that, not only is not the Catholic teaching of the first
centuries, but neither again are the dogmas of Rome, the objects of the
protest of the compilers of the Articles, but the dominant errors, the
popular corruptions, authorized or suffered by the high name of Rome.
The eloquent declamation of the Homilies finds its matter almost
exclusively in the dominant errors. As to Catholic teaching, nay as to
Roman dogma, of such theology those Homilies, as I have shown, contained
no small portion themselves.

[5] The Pope's Confirmation of the Council, by which its Canons became
_de fide_, and his Bull _super confirmatione_ by which they were
promulgated to the world, are dated January 26, 1564. The Articles are
dated 1562.

5. So much for the writers of the Articles and Homilies;--they were
witnesses, not authorities, and I used them as such; but in the next
place, who were the actual authorities imposing them? I reasonably
considered the authority _imponens_ to be the Convocation of 1571; but
here again, it would be found that the very Convocation, which received
and confirmed the 39 Articles, also enjoined by Canon that "preachers
should be _careful_, that they should _never_ teach aught in a sermon,
to be religiously held and believed by the people, except that which is
agreeable to the doctrine of the Old and New Testament, and _which the
Catholic Fathers and ancient Bishops have collected_ from that very
doctrine." Here, let it be observed, an appeal is made by the
Convocation _imponens_ to the very same ancient authorities, as had been
mentioned with such profound veneration by the writers of the Homilies
and the Articles, and thus, if the Homilies contained views of doctrine
which now would be called Roman, there seemed to me to be an extreme
probability that the Convocation of 1571 also countenanced and received,
or at least did not reject, those doctrines.

6. And further, when at length I came actually to look into the text of
the Articles, I saw in many cases a patent justification of all that I
had surmised as to their vagueness and indecisiveness, and that, not
only on questions which lay between Lutherans, Calvinists, and
Zuinglians, but on Catholic questions also; and I have noticed them in
my Tract. In the conclusion of my Tract I observe: The Articles are
"evidently framed on the principle of leaving open large questions on
which the controversy hinges. They state broadly extreme truths, and are
silent about their adjustment. For instance, they say that all necessary
faith must be proved from Scripture; but do not say _who_ is to prove
it. They say, that the Church has authority in controversies; they do
not say _what_ authority. They say that it may enforce nothing beyond
Scripture, but do not say _where_ the remedy lies when it does. They say
that works _before_ grace _and_ justification are worthless and worse,
and that works _after_ grace _and_ justification are acceptable, but
they do not speak at all of works _with_ God's aid _before_
justification. They say that men are lawfully called and sent to
minister and preach, who are chosen and called by men who have public
authority _given_ them in the Congregation; but they do not add _by
whom_ the authority is to be given. They say that Councils called by
_princes_ may err; they do not determine whether Councils called in the
name of Christ may err."

Such were the considerations which weighed with me in my inquiry how far
the Articles were tolerant of a Catholic, or even a Roman
interpretation; and such was the defence which I made in my Tract for
having attempted it. From what I have already said, it will appear that
I have no need or intention at this day to maintain every particular
interpretation which I suggested in the course of my Tract, nor indeed
had I then. Whether it was prudent or not, whether it was sensible or
not, any how I attempted only a first essay of a necessary work, an
essay which, as I was quite prepared to find, would require revision and
modification by means of the lights which I should gain from the
criticism of others. I should have gladly withdrawn any statement, which
could be proved to me to be erroneous; I considered my work to be faulty
and open to objection in the same sense in which I now consider my
Anglican interpretations of Scripture to be erroneous; but in no other
sense. I am surprised that men do not apply to the interpreters of
Scripture generally the hard names which they apply to the author of
Tract 90. He held a large system of theology, and applied it to the
Articles: Episcopalians, or Lutherans, or Presbyterians, or Unitarians,
hold a large system of theology and apply it to Scripture. Every
theology has its difficulties; Protestants hold justification by faith
only, though there is no text in St. Paul which enunciates it, and
though St. James expressly denies it; do we therefore call Protestants
dishonest? they deny that the Church has a divine mission, though St.
Paul says that it is "the Pillar and ground of Truth;" they keep the
Sabbath, though St. Paul says, "Let no man judge you in meat or drink or
in respect of ... the sabbath days." Every creed has texts in its
favour, and again texts which run counter to it: and this is generally
confessed. And this is what I felt keenly:--how had I done worse in
Tract 90 than Anglicans, Wesleyans, and Calvinists did daily in their
Sermons and their publications? how had I done worse, than the
Evangelical party in their _ex animo_ reception of the Services for
Baptism and Visitation of the Sick[6]? Why was I to be dishonest and
they immaculate? There was an occasion on which our Lord gave an answer,
which seemed to be appropriate to my own case, when the tumult broke out
against my Tract:--"He that is without sin among you, let him first cast
a stone at him." I could have fancied that a sense of their own
difficulties of interpretation would have persuaded the great party I
have mentioned to some prudence, or at least moderation, in opposing a
teacher of an opposite school. But I suppose their alarm and their anger
overcame their sense of justice.

[6] For instance, let candid men consider the form of Absolution
contained in that Prayer Book, of which all clergymen, Evangelical and
Liberal as well as high Church, and (I think) all persons in University
office declare that "it containeth _nothing contrary to the Word of

I challenge, in the sight of all England, Evangelical clergymen
generally, to put on paper an interpretation of this form of words,
consistent with their sentiments, which shall be less forced than the
most objectionable of the interpretations which Tract 90 puts upon any
passage in the Articles.

"Our Lord Jesus Christ, who hath left _power_ to His Church to absolve
all sinners who truly repent and believe in Him, of His great mercy
forgive thee thine offences; and by _His authority committed to me, I
absolve thee from all thy sins_, in the Name of the Father, and of the
Son, and of the Holy Ghost. Amen."

I subjoin the Roman form, as used in England and elsewhere: "Dominus
noster Jesus Christus te absolvat; et ego auctoritate ipsius te absolvo,
ab omni vinculo excommunicationis et interdicti, in quantum possum et tu
indiges. Deinde ego te absolvo à peccatis tuis, in nomine Patris et
Filii et Spiritûs Sancti. Amen."

       *       *       *       *       *

In the sudden storm of indignation with which the Tract was received
throughout the country on its appearance, I recognize much of real
religious feeling, much of honest and true principle, much of
straightforward ignorant common sense. In Oxford there was genuine
feeling too; but there had been a smouldering, stern, energetic
animosity, not at all unnatural, partly rational, against its author. A
false step had been made; now was the time for action. I am told that,
even before the publication of the Tract, rumours of its contents had
got into the hostile camp in an exaggerated form; and not a moment was
lost in proceeding to action, when I was actually fallen into the hands
of the Philistines. I was quite unprepared for the outbreak, and was
startled at its violence. I do not think I had any fear. Nay, I will
add, I am not sure that it was not in one point of view a relief to me.

I saw indeed clearly that my place in the Movement was lost; public
confidence was at an end; my occupation was gone. It was simply an
impossibility that I could say any thing henceforth to good effect, when
I had been posted up by the marshal on the buttery-hatch of every
College of my University, after the manner of discommoned pastry-cooks,
and when in every part of the country and every class of society,
through every organ and opportunity of opinion, in newspapers, in
periodicals, at meetings, in pulpits, at dinner-tables, in coffee-rooms,
in railway carriages, I was denounced as a traitor who had laid his
train and was detected in the very act of firing it against the
time-honoured Establishment. There were indeed men, besides my own
immediate friends, men of name and position, who gallantly took my part,
as Dr. Hook, Mr. Palmer, and Mr. Perceval; it must have been a grievous
trial for themselves; yet what after all could they do for me?
Confidence in me was lost;--but I had already lost full confidence in
myself. Thoughts had passed over me a year and a half before in respect
to the Anglican claims, which for the time had profoundly troubled me.
They had gone: I had not less confidence in the power and the prospects
of the Apostolical movement than before; not less confidence than before
in the grievousness of what I called the "dominant errors" of Rome: but
how was I any more to have absolute confidence in myself? how was I to
have confidence in my present confidence? how was I to be sure that I
should always think as I thought now? I felt that by this event a kind
Providence had saved me from an impossible position in the future.

       *       *       *       *       *

First, if I remember right, they wished me to withdraw the Tract. This I
refused to do: I would not do so for the sake of those who were
unsettled or in danger of unsettlement. I would not do so for my own
sake; for how could I acquiesce in a mere Protestant interpretation of
the Articles? how could I range myself among the professors of a
theology, of which it put my teeth on edge even to hear the sound?

Next they said, "Keep silence; do not defend the Tract;" I answered,
"Yes, if you will not condemn it,--if you will allow it to continue on
sale." They pressed on me whenever I gave way; they fell back when they
saw me obstinate. Their line of action was to get out of me as much as
they could; but upon the point of their tolerating the Tract I _was_
obstinate. So they let me continue it on sale; and they said they would
not condemn it. But they said that this was on condition that I did not
defend it, that I stopped the series, and that I myself published my own
condemnation in a letter to the Bishop of Oxford. I impute nothing
whatever to him, he was ever most kind to me. Also, they said they could
not answer for what some individual Bishops might perhaps say about the
Tract in their own charges. I agreed to their conditions. My one point
was to save the Tract.

Not a line in writing was given me, as a pledge of the observance of the
main article on their side of the engagement. Parts of letters from them
were read to me, without being put into my hands. It was an
"understanding." A clever man had warned me against "understandings"
some thirteen years before: I have hated them ever since.

In the last words of my letter to the Bishop of Oxford I thus resigned
my place in the Movement:--

"I have nothing to be sorry for," I say to him, "except having made your
Lordship anxious, and others whom I am bound to revere. I have nothing
to be sorry for, but everything to rejoice in and be thankful for. I
have never taken pleasure in seeming to be able to move a party, and
whatever influence I have had, has been found, not sought after. I have
acted because others did not act, and have sacrificed a quiet which I
prized. May God be with me in time to come, as He has been hitherto! and
He will be, if I can but keep my hand clean and my heart pure. I think I
can bear, or at least will try to bear, any personal humiliation, so
that I am preserved from betraying sacred interests, which the Lord of
grace and power has given into my charge[7]."

[7] To the Pamphlets published in my behalf at this time I should add
"One Tract more," an able and generous defence of Tractarianism and No.
90, by the present Lord Houghton.



And now that I am about to trace, as far as I can, the course of that
great revolution of mind, which led me to leave my own home, to which I
was bound by so many strong and tender ties, I feel overcome with the
difficulty of satisfying myself in my account of it, and have recoiled
from the attempt, till the near approach of the day, on which these
lines must be given to the world, forces me to set about the task. For
who can know himself, and the multitude of subtle influences which act
upon him? And who can recollect, at the distance of twenty-five years,
all that he once knew about his thoughts and his deeds, and that, during
a portion of his life, when, even at the time, his observation, whether
of himself or of the external world, was less than before or after, by
very reason of the perplexity and dismay which weighed upon him,--when,
in spite of the light given to him according to his need amid his
darkness, yet a darkness it emphatically was? And who can suddenly gird
himself to a new and anxious undertaking, which he might be able indeed
to perform well, were full and calm leisure allowed him to look through
every thing that he had written, whether in published works or private
letters? yet again, granting that calm contemplation of the past, in
itself so desirable, who could afford to be leisurely and deliberate,
while he practises on himself a cruel operation, the ripping up of old
griefs, and the venturing again upon the "infandum dolorem" of years in
which the stars of this lower heaven were one by one going out? I could
not in cool blood, nor except upon the imperious call of duty, attempt
what I have set myself to do. It is both to head and heart an extreme
trial, thus to analyze what has so long gone by, and to bring out the
results of that examination. I have done various bold things in my life:
this is the boldest: and, were I not sure I should after all succeed in
my object, it would be madness to set about it.

       *       *       *       *       *

In the spring of 1839 my position in the Anglican Church was at its
height. I had supreme confidence in my controversial _status_, and I had
a great and still growing success, in recommending it to others. I had
in the foregoing autumn been somewhat sore at the Bishop's Charge, but I
have a letter which shows that all annoyance had passed from my mind. In
January, if I recollect aright, in order to meet the popular clamour
against myself and others, and to satisfy the Bishop, I had collected
into one all the strong things which they, and especially I, had said
against the Church of Rome, in order to their insertion among the
advertisements appended to our publications. Conscious as I was that my
opinions in religion were not gained, as the world said, from Roman
sources, but were, on the contrary, the birth of my own mind and of the
circumstances in which I had been placed, I had a scorn of the
imputations which were heaped upon me. It was true that I held a large
bold system of religion, very unlike the Protestantism of the day, but
it was the concentration and adjustment of the statements of great
Anglican authorities, and I had as much right to hold it, as the
Evangelical, and more right than the Liberal party could show, for
asserting their own respective doctrines. As I declared on occasion of
Tract 90, I claimed, in behalf of who would in the Anglican Church, the
right of holding with Bramhall a comprecation with the Saints, and the
Mass all but Transubstantiation with Andrewes, or with Hooker that
Transubstantiation itself is not a point for Churches to part communion
upon, or with Hammond that a General Council, truly such, never did,
never shall err in a matter of faith, or with Bull that man had in
paradise and lost on the fall, a supernatural habit of grace, or with
Thorndike that penance is a propitiation for post-baptismal sin, or with
Pearson that the all-powerful name of Jesus is no otherwise given than
in the Catholic Church. "Two can play at that," was often in my mouth,
when men of Protestant sentiments appealed to the Articles, Homilies, or
Reformers; in the sense that, if they had a right to speak loud, I had
the liberty to speak out as well as they, and had the means, by the same
or parallel appeals, of giving them tit for tat. I thought that the
Anglican Church was tyrannized over by a mere party, and I aimed at
bringing into effect the promise contained in the motto to the Lyra,
"They shall know the difference now." I only asked to be allowed to show
them the difference.

What will best describe my state of mind at the early part of 1839, is
an Article in the British Critic for that April. I have looked over it
now, for the first time since it was published; and have been struck by
it for this reason:--it contains the last words which I ever spoke as an
Anglican to Anglicans. It may now be read as my parting address and
valediction, made to my friends. I little knew it at the time. It
reviews the actual state of things, and it ends by looking towards the
future. It is not altogether mine; for my memory goes to this,--that I
had asked a friend to do the work; that then, the thought came on me,
that I would do it myself: and that he was good enough to put into my
hands what he had with great appositeness written, and that I embodied
it in my Article. Every one, I think, will recognize the greater part of
it as mine. It was published two years before the affair of Tract 90,
and was entitled "The State of Religious Parties."

In this Article, I begin by bringing together testimonies from our
enemies to the remarkable success of our exertions. One writer said:
"Opinions and views of a theology of a very marked and peculiar kind
have been extensively adopted and strenuously upheld, and are daily
gaining ground among a considerable and influential portion of the
members, as well as ministers of the Established Church." Another: The
Movement has manifested itself "with the most rapid growth of the
hot-bed of these evil days." Another: "The _Via Media_ is crowded with
young enthusiasts, who never presume to argue, except against the
propriety of arguing at all." Another: "Were I to give you a full list
of the works, which they have produced within the short space of five
years, I should surprise you. You would see what a task it would be to
make yourself complete master of their system, even in its present
probably immature state. The writers have adopted the motto, 'In
quietness and confidence shall be your strength.' With regard to
confidence, they have justified their adopting it; but as to quietness,
it is not very quiet to pour forth such a succession of controversial
publications." Another: "The spread of these doctrines is in fact now
having the effect of rendering all other distinctions obsolete, and of
severing the religious community into two portions, fundamentally and
vehemently opposed one to the other. Soon there will be no middle ground
left; and every man, and especially every clergyman, will be compelled
to make his choice between the two." Another: "The time has gone by,
when those unfortunate and deeply regretted publications can be passed
over without notice, and the hope that their influence would fail is now
dead." Another: "These doctrines had already made fearful progress. One
of the largest churches in Brighton is crowded to hear them; so is the
church at Leeds. There are few towns of note, to which they have not
extended. They are preached in small towns in Scotland. They obtain in
Elginshire, 600 miles north of London. I found them myself in the heart
of the highlands of Scotland. They are advocated in the newspaper and
periodical press. They have even insinuated themselves into the House of
Commons." And, lastly, a bishop in a charge:--It "is daily assuming a
more serious and alarming aspect. Under the specious pretence of
deference to Antiquity and respect for primitive models, the foundations
of the Protestant Church are undermined by men, who dwell within her
walls, and those who sit in the Reformers' seat are traducing the

After thus stating the phenomenon of the time, as it presented itself to
those who did not sympathize in it, the Article proceeds to account for
it; and this it does by considering it as a re-action from the dry and
superficial character of the religious teaching and the literature of
the last generation, or century, and as a result of the need which was
felt both by the hearts and the intellects of the nation for a deeper
philosophy, and as the evidence and as the partial fulfilment of that
need, to which even the chief authors of the then generation had borne
witness. First, I mentioned the literary influence of Walter Scott, who
turned men's minds in the direction of the middle ages. "The general
need," I said, "of something deeper and more attractive, than what had
offered itself elsewhere, may be considered to have led to his
popularity; and by means of his popularity he re-acted on his readers,
stimulating their mental thirst, feeding their hopes, setting before
them visions, which, when once seen, are not easily forgotten, and
silently indoctrinating them with nobler ideas, which might afterwards
be appealed to as first principles."

Then I spoke of Coleridge, thus: "While history in prose and verse was
thus made the instrument of Church feelings and opinions, a
philosophical basis for the same was laid in England by a very original
thinker, who, while he indulged a liberty of speculation, which no
Christian can tolerate, and advocated conclusions which were often
heathen rather than Christian, yet after all installed a higher
philosophy into inquiring minds, than they had hitherto been accustomed
to accept. In this way he made trial of his age, and succeeded in
interesting its genius in the cause of Catholic truth."

Then come Southey and Wordsworth, "two living poets, one of whom in the
department of fantastic fiction, the other in that of philosophical
meditation, have addressed themselves to the same high principles and
feelings, and carried forward their readers in the same direction."

Then comes the prediction of this re-action hazarded by "a sagacious
observer withdrawn from the world, and surveying its movements from a
distance," Mr. Alexander Knox. He had said twenty years before the date
of my Article: "No Church on earth has more intrinsic excellence than
the English Church, yet no Church probably has less practical
influence.... The rich provision, made by the grace and providence of
God, for habits of a noble kind, is evidence that men shall arise,
fitted both by nature and ability, to discover for themselves, and to
display to others, whatever yet remains undiscovered, whether in the
words or works of God." Also I referred to "a much venerated clergyman
of the last generation," who said shortly before his death, "Depend on
it, the day will come, when those great doctrines, now buried, will be
brought out to the light of day, and then the effect will be fearful." I
remarked upon this, that they who "now blame the impetuosity of the
current, should rather turn their animadversions upon those who have
dammed up a majestic river, till it has become a flood."

These being the circumstances under which the Movement began and
progressed, it was absurd to refer it to the act of two or three
individuals. It was not so much a movement as a "spirit afloat;" it was
within us, "rising up in hearts where it was least suspected, and
working itself, though not in secret, yet so subtly and impalpably, as
hardly to admit of precaution or encounter on any ordinary human rules
of opposition. It is," I continued, "an adversary in the air, a
something one and entire, a whole wherever it is, unapproachable and
incapable of being grasped, as being the result of causes far deeper
than political or other visible agencies, the spiritual awakening of
spiritual wants."

To make this clear, I proceed to refer to the chief preachers of the
revived doctrines at that moment, and to draw attention to the variety
of their respective antecedents. Dr. Hook and Mr. Churton represented
the high Church dignitaries of the last century; Mr. Perceval, the Tory
aristocracy; Mr. Keble came from a country parsonage; Mr. Palmer from
Ireland; Dr. Pusey from the Universities of Germany, and the study of
Arabic MSS.; Mr. Dodsworth from the study of Prophecy; Mr. Oakeley had
gained his views, as he himself expressed it, "partly by study, partly
by reflection, partly by conversation with one or two friends, inquirers
like himself:" while I speak of myself as being "much indebted to the
friendship of Archbishop Whately." And thus I am led on to ask, "What
head of a sect is there? What march of opinions can be traced from mind
to mind among preachers such as these? They are one and all in their
degree the organs of one Sentiment, which has risen up simultaneously in
many places very mysteriously."

My train of thought next led me to speak of the disciples of the
Movement, and I freely acknowledged and lamented that they needed to be
kept in order. It is very much to the purpose to draw attention to this
point now, when such extravagances as then occurred, whatever they were,
are simply laid to my door, or to the charge of the doctrines which I
advocated. A man cannot do more than freely confess what is wrong, say
that it need not be, that it ought not to be, and that he is very sorry
that it should be. Now I said in the Article, which I am reviewing, that
the great truths themselves, which we were preaching, must not be
condemned on account of such abuse of them. "Aberrations there must ever
be, whatever the doctrine is, while the human heart is sensitive,
capricious, and wayward. A mixed multitude went out of Egypt with the
Israelites." "There will ever be a number of persons," I continued,
"professing the opinions of a movement party, who talk loudly and
strangely, do odd or fierce things, display themselves unnecessarily,
and disgust other people; persons, too young to be wise, too generous to
be cautious, too warm to be sober, or too intellectual to be humble.
Such persons will be very apt to attach themselves to particular
persons, to use particular names, to say things merely because others
do, and to act in a party-spirited way."

While I thus republish what I then said about such extravagances as
occurred in these years, at the same time I have a very strong
conviction that those extravagances furnished quite as much the welcome
excuse for those who were jealous or shy of us, as the stumbling-blocks
of those who were well inclined to our doctrines. This too we felt at
the time; but it was our duty to see that our good should not be
evil-spoken of; and accordingly, two or three of the writers of the
Tracts for the Times had commenced a Series of what they called "Plain
Sermons" with the avowed purpose of discouraging and correcting whatever
was uppish or extreme in our followers: to this Series I contributed a
volume myself.

Its conductors say in their Preface: "If therefore as time goes on,
there shall be found persons, who admiring the innate beauty and majesty
of the fuller system of Primitive Christianity, and seeing the
transcendent strength of its principles, _shall become loud and voluble
advocates_ in their behalf, speaking the more freely, _because they do
not feel them deeply as founded_ in divine and eternal truth, of such
persons _it is our duty to declare plainly_, that, as we should
contemplate their condition with serious misgiving, _so would they be
the last persons from whom we should_ seek support.

"But if, on the other hand, there shall be any, who, in the silent
humility of their lives, and in their unaffected reverence for holy
things, show that they in truth accept these principles as real and
substantial, and by habitual purity of heart and serenity of temper,
give proof of their deep veneration for sacraments and sacramental
ordinances, those persons, _whether our professed adherents or not_,
best exemplify the kind of character which the writers of the Tracts for
the Times have wished to form."

These clergymen had the best of claims to use these beautiful words, for
they were themselves, all of them, important writers in the Tracts, the
two Mr. Kebles, and Mr. Isaac Williams. And this passage, with which
they ushered their Series into the world, I quoted in the Article, of
which I am giving an account, and I added, "What more can be required of
the preachers of neglected truth, than that they should admit that some,
who do not assent to their preaching, are holier and better men than
some who do?" They were not answerable for the intemperance of those who
dishonoured a true doctrine, provided they protested, as they did,
against such intemperance. "They were not answerable for the dust and
din which attends any great moral movement. The truer doctrines are, the
more liable they are to be perverted."

The notice of these incidental faults of opinion or temper in adherents
of the Movement, led on to a discussion of the secondary causes, by
means of which a system of doctrine may be embraced, modified, or
developed, of the variety of schools which may all be in the One Church,
and of the succession of one phase of doctrine to another, while that
doctrine is ever one and the same. Thus I was brought on to the subject
of Antiquity, which was the basis of the doctrine of the _Via Media_,
and by which was not to be understood a servile imitation of the past,
but such a reproduction of it as is really new, while it is old. "We
have good hope," I say, "that a system will be rising up, superior to
the age, yet harmonizing with, and carrying out its higher points, which
will attract to itself those who are willing to make a venture and to
face difficulties, for the sake of something higher in prospect. On
this, as on other subjects, the proverb will apply, 'Fortes fortuna

Lastly, I proceeded to the question of that future of the Anglican
Church, which was to be a new birth of the Ancient Religion. And I did
not venture to pronounce upon it. "About the future, we have no prospect
before our minds whatever, good or bad. Ever since that great luminary,
Augustine, proved to be the last bishop of Hippo, Christians have had a
lesson against attempting to foretell, _how_ Providence will prosper
and" [or?] "bring to an end, what it begins." Perhaps the lately-revived
principles would prevail in the Anglican Church; perhaps they would be
lost in some miserable schism, or some more miserable compromise; but
there was nothing rash in venturing to predict that "neither Puritanism
nor Liberalism had any permanent inheritance within her."

Then I went on: "As to Liberalism, we think the formularies of the
Church will ever, with the aid of a good Providence, keep it from making
any serious inroads upon the clergy. Besides, it is too cold a principle
to prevail with the multitude." But as regarded what was called
Evangelical Religion or Puritanism, there was more to cause alarm. I
observed upon its organization; but on the other hand it had no
intellectual basis; no internal idea, no principle of unity, no
theology. "Its adherents," I said, "are already separating from each
other; they will melt away like a snow-drift. It has no straightforward
view on any one point, on which it professes to teach, and to hide its
poverty, it has dressed itself out in a maze of words. We have no dread
of it at all; we only fear what it may lead to. It does not stand on
intrenched ground, or make any pretence to a position; it does but
occupy the space between contending powers, Catholic Truth and
Rationalism. Then indeed will be the stern encounter, when two real and
living principles, simple, entire, and consistent, one in the Church,
the other out of it, at length rush upon each other, contending not for
names and words, or half-views, but for elementary notions and
distinctive moral characters."

Whether the ideas of the coming age upon religion were true or false, at
least they would be real. "In the present day," I said, "mistiness is
the mother of wisdom. A man who can set down a half-a-dozen general
propositions, which escape from destroying one another only by being
diluted into truisms, who can hold the balance between opposites so
skilfully as to do without fulcrum or beam, who never enunciates a truth
without guarding himself against being supposed to exclude the
contradictory,--who holds that Scripture is the only authority, yet that
the Church is to be deferred to, that faith only justifies, yet that it
does not justify without works, that grace does not depend on the
sacraments, yet is not given without them, that bishops are a divine
ordinance, yet those who have them not are in the same religious
condition as those who have,--this is your safe man and the hope of the
Church; this is what the Church is said to want, not party men, but
sensible, temperate, sober, well-judging persons, to guide it through
the channel of no-meaning, between the Scylla and Charybdis of Aye and

This state of things, however, I said, could not last, if men were to
read and think. They "will not keep in that very attitude which you call
sound Church-of-Englandism or orthodox Protestantism. They cannot go on
for ever standing on one leg, or sitting without a chair, or walking
with their feet tied, or like Tityrus's stags grazing in the air. They
will take one view or another, but it will be a consistent view. It may
be Liberalism, or Erastianism, or Popery, or Catholicity; but it will be

I concluded the Article by saying, that all who did not wish to be
"democratic, or pantheistic, or popish," must "look out for _some_ Via
Media which will preserve us from what threatens, though it cannot
restore the dead. The spirit of Luther is dead; but Hildebrand and
Loyola are alive. Is it sensible, sober, judicious, to be so very angry
with those writers of the day, who point to the fact, that our divines
of the seventeenth century have occupied a ground which is the true and
intelligible mean between extremes? Is it wise to quarrel with this
ground, because it is not exactly what we should choose, had we the
power of choice? Is it true moderation, instead of trying to fortify a
middle doctrine, to fling stones at those who do?... Would you rather
have your sons and daughters members of the Church of England or of the
Church of Rome?"

And thus I left the matter. But, while I was thus speaking of the future
of the Movement, I was in truth winding up my accounts with it, little
dreaming that it was so to be;--while I was still, in some way or other,
feeling about for an available _Via Media_, I was soon to receive a
shock which was to cast out of my imagination all middle courses and
compromises for ever. As I have said, this Article appeared in the April
number of the British Critic; in the July number, I cannot tell why,
there is no Article of mine; before the number for October, the event
had happened to which I have alluded.

But before I proceed to describe what happened to me in the summer of
1839, I must detain the reader for a while, in order to describe the
_issue_ of the controversy between Rome and the Anglican Church, as I
viewed it. This will involve some dry discussion; but it is as necessary
for my narrative, as plans of buildings and homesteads are at times
needed in the proceedings of our law courts.

       *       *       *       *       *

I have said already that, though the object of the Movement was to
withstand the Liberalism of the day, I found and felt this could not be
done by mere negatives. It was necessary for us to have a positive
Church theory erected on a definite basis. This took me to the great
Anglican divines; and then of course I found at once that it was
impossible to form any such theory, without cutting across the teaching
of the Church of Rome. Thus came in the Roman controversy.

When I first turned myself to it, I had neither doubt on the subject,
nor suspicion that doubt would ever come upon me. It was in this state
of mind that I began to read up Bellarmine on the one hand, and
numberless Anglican writers on the other. But I soon found, as others
had found before me, that it was a tangled and manifold controversy,
difficult to master, more difficult to put out of hand with neatness and
precision. It was easy to make points, not easy to sum up and settle. It
was not easy to find a clear issue for the dispute, and still less by a
logical process to decide it in favour of Anglicanism. This difficulty,
however, had no tendency whatever to harass or perplex me: it was a
matter which bore not on convictions, but on proofs.

First I saw, as all see who study the subject, that a broad distinction
had to be drawn between the actual state of belief and of usage in the
countries which were in communion with the Roman Church, and her formal
dogmas; the latter did not cover the former. Sensible pain, for
instance, is not implied in the Tridentine decree upon Purgatory; but it
was the tradition of the Latin Church, and I had seen the pictures of
souls in flames in the streets of Naples. Bishop Lloyd had brought this
distinction out strongly in an Article in the British Critic in 1825;
indeed, it was one of the most common objections made to the Church of
Rome, that she dared not commit herself by formal decree, to what
nevertheless she sanctioned and allowed. Accordingly, in my Prophetical
Office, I view as simply separate ideas, Rome quiescent, and Rome in
action. I contrasted her creed on the one hand, with her ordinary
teaching, her controversial tone, her political and social bearing, and
her popular beliefs and practices, on the other.

While I made this distinction between the decrees and the traditions of
Rome, I drew a parallel distinction between Anglicanism quiescent, and
Anglicanism in action. In its formal creed Anglicanism was not at a
great distance from Rome: far otherwise, when viewed in its insular
spirit, the traditions of its establishment, its historical
characteristics, its controversial rancour, and its private judgment. I
disavowed and condemned those excesses, and called them "Protestantism"
or "Ultra-Protestantism:" I wished to find a parallel disclaimer, on the
part of Roman controversialists, of that popular system of beliefs and
usages in their own Church, which I called "Popery." When that hope was
a dream, I saw that the controversy lay between the book-theology of
Anglicanism on the one side, and the living system of what I called
Roman corruption on the other. I could not get further than this; with
this result I was forced to content myself.

These then were the _parties_ in the controversy:--the Anglican _Via
Media_ and the popular religion of Rome. And next, as to the _issue_, to
which the controversy between them was to be brought, it was this:--the
Anglican disputant took his stand upon Antiquity or Apostolicity, the
Roman upon Catholicity. The Anglican said to the Roman: "There is but
One Faith, the Ancient, and you have not kept to it;" the Roman
retorted: "There is but One Church, the Catholic, and you are out of
it." The Anglican urged "Your special beliefs, practices, modes of
action, are nowhere in Antiquity;" the Roman objected: "You do not
communicate with any one Church besides your own and its offshoots, and
you have discarded principles, doctrines, sacraments, and usages, which
are and ever have been received in the East and the West." The true
Church, as defined in the Creeds, was both Catholic and Apostolic; now,
as I viewed the controversy in which I was engaged, England and Rome had
divided these notes or prerogatives between them: the cause lay thus,
Apostolicity _versus_ Catholicity.

However, in thus stating the matter, of course I do not wish it supposed
that I allowed the note of Catholicity really to belong to Rome, to the
disparagement of the Anglican Church; but I considered that the special
point or plea of Rome in the controversy was Catholicity, as the
Anglican plea was Antiquity. Of course I contended that the Roman idea
of Catholicity was not ancient and apostolic. It was in my judgment at
the utmost only natural, becoming, expedient, that the whole of
Christendom should be united in one visible body; while such a unity
might, on the other hand, be nothing more than a mere heartless and
political combination. For myself, I held with the Anglican divines,
that, in the Primitive Church, there was a very real mutual independence
between its separate parts, though, from a dictate of charity, there was
in fact a close union between them. I considered that each See and
Diocese might be compared to a crystal, and that each was similar to the
rest, and that the sum total of them all was only a collection of
crystals. The unity of the Church lay, not in its being a polity, but in
its being a family, a race, coming down by apostolical descent from its
first founders and bishops. And I considered this truth brought out,
beyond the possibility of dispute, in the Epistles of St. Ignatius, in
which the Bishop is represented as the one supreme authority in the
Church, that is, in his own place, with no one above him, except as, for
the sake of ecclesiastical order and expedience, arrangements had been
made by which one was put over or under another. So much for our own
claim to Catholicity, which was so perversely appropriated by our
opponents to themselves:--on the other hand, as to our special strong
point, Antiquity, while, of course, by means of it, we were able to
condemn most emphatically the novel claim of Rome to domineer over other
Churches, which were in truth her equals, further than that, we thereby
especially convicted her of the intolerable offence of having added to
the Faith. This was the critical head of accusation urged against her by
the Anglican disputant; and as he referred to St. Ignatius in proof that
he himself was a true Catholic, in spite of being separated from Rome,
so he triumphantly referred to the Treatise of Vincentius of Lerins upon
the "Quod semper, quod ubique, quod ab omnibus," in proof that the
controversialists of Rome, in spite of their possession of the Catholic
name, were separated in their creed from the Apostolical and primitive

Of course those controversialists had their own mode of answering him,
with which I am not concerned in this place; here I am only concerned
with the issue itself, between the one party and the other--Antiquity
_versus_ Catholicity.

Now I will proceed to illustrate what I have been saying of the _status_
of the controversy, as it presented itself to my mind, by extracts from
my writings of the dates of 1836, 1840, and 1841. And I introduce them
with a remark, which especially applies to the paper, from which I shall
quote first, of the date of 1836. That paper appeared in the March and
April numbers of the British Magazine of that year, and was entitled
"Home Thoughts Abroad." Now it will be found, that, in the discussion
which it contains, as in various other writings of mine, when I was in
the Anglican Church, the argument in behalf of Rome is stated with
considerable perspicuity and force. And at the time my friends and
supporters cried out, "How imprudent!" and, both at the time, and
especially at a later date, my enemies have cried out, "How insidious!"
Friends and foes virtually agreed in their criticism; I had set out the
cause which I was combating to the best advantage: this was an offence;
it might be from imprudence, it might be with a traitorous design. It
was from neither the one nor the other; but for the following reasons.
First, I had a great impatience, whatever was the subject, of not
bringing out the whole of it, as clearly as I could; next I wished to be
as fair to my adversaries as possible; and thirdly I thought that there
was a great deal of shallowness among our own friends, and that they
undervalued the strength of the argument in behalf of Rome, and that
they ought to be roused to a more exact apprehension of the position of
the controversy. At a later date, (1841,) when I really felt the force
of the Roman side of the question myself, as a difficulty which had to
be met, I had a fourth reason for such frankness in argument, and that
was, because a number of persons were unsettled far more than I was, as
to the Catholicity of the Anglican Church. It was quite plain that,
unless I was perfectly candid in stating what could be said against it,
there was no chance that any representations, which I felt to be in its
favour, or at least to be adverse to Rome, would have had any success
with the persons in question.

At all times I had a deep conviction, to put the matter on the lowest
ground, that "honesty was the best policy." Accordingly, in July 1841, I
expressed myself thus on the Anglican difficulty: "This is an objection
which we must honestly say is deeply felt by many people, and not
inconsiderable ones; and the more it is openly avowed to be a
difficulty, the better; for there is then the chance of its being
acknowledged, and in the course of time obviated, as far as may be, by
those who have the power. Flagrant evils cure themselves by being
flagrant; and we are sanguine that the time is come when so great an
evil as this is, cannot stand its ground against the good feeling and
common sense of religious persons. It is the very strength of Romanism
against us; and, unless the proper persons take it into their serious
consideration, they may look for certain to undergo the loss, as time
goes on, of some whom they would least like to be lost to our Church."
The measure which I had especially in view in this passage, was the
project of a Jerusalem Bishopric, which the then Archbishop of
Canterbury was at that time concocting with M. Bunsen, and of which I
shall speak more in the sequel. And now to return to the Home Thoughts
Abroad of the spring of 1836:--

The discussion contained in this composition runs in the form of a
dialogue. One of the disputants says: "You say to me that the Church of
Rome is corrupt. What then? to cut off a limb is a strange way of saving
it from the influence of some constitutional ailment. Indigestion may
cause cramp in the extremities; yet we spare our poor feet
notwithstanding. Surely there is such a religious _fact_ as the
existence of a great Catholic body, union with which is a Christian
privilege and duty. Now, we English are separate from it."

The other answers: "The present is an unsatisfactory, miserable state of
things, yet I can grant no more. The Church is founded on a
doctrine,--on the gospel of Truth; it is a means to an end. Perish the
Church, (though, blessed be the promise! this cannot be,) yet let it
perish _rather_ than the Truth should fail. Purity of faith is more
precious to the Christian than unity itself. If Rome has erred
grievously in doctrine, then it is a duty to separate even from Rome."

His friend, who takes the Roman side of the argument, refers to the
image of the Vine and its branches, which is found, I think, in St.
Cyprian, as if a branch cut from the Catholic Vine must necessarily die.
Also he quotes a passage from St. Augustine in controversy with the
Donatists to the same effect; viz. that, as being separated from the
body of the Church, they were _ipso facto_ cut off from the heritage of
Christ. And he quotes St. Cyril's argument drawn from the very title
Catholic, which no body or communion of men has ever dared or been able
to appropriate, besides one. He adds, "Now I am only contending for the
fact, that the communion of Rome constitutes the main body of the Church
Catholic, and that we are split off from it, and in the condition of the

The other replies by denying the fact that the present Roman communion
is like St. Augustine's Catholic Church, inasmuch as there must be taken
into account the large Anglican and Greek communions. Presently he takes
the offensive, naming distinctly the points, in which Rome has departed
from Primitive Christianity, viz. "the practical idolatry, the virtual
worship of the Virgin and Saints, which are the offence of the Latin
Church, and the degradation of moral truth and duty, which follows from
these." And again: "We cannot join a Church, did we wish it ever so
much, which does not acknowledge our orders, refuses us the Cup, demands
our acquiescence in image-worship, and excommunicates us, if we do not
receive it and all other decisions of the Tridentine Council."

His opponent answers these objections by referring to the doctrine of
"developments of gospel truth." Besides, "The Anglican system itself is
not found complete in those early centuries; so that the [Anglican]
principle [of Antiquity] is self-destructive." "When a man takes up this
_Via Media_, he is a mere _doctrinaire_;" he is like those, "who, in
some matter of business, start up to suggest their own little crotchet,
and are ever measuring mountains with a pocket ruler, or improving the
planetary courses." "The _Via Media_ has slept in libraries; it is a
substitute of infancy for manhood."

It is plain, then, that at the end of 1835 or beginning of 1836, I had
the whole state of the question before me, on which, to my mind, the
decision between the Churches depended. It is observable that the
question of the position of the Pope, whether as the centre of unity, or
as the source of jurisdiction, did not come into my thoughts at all; nor
did it, I think I may say, to the end. I doubt whether I ever distinctly
held any of his powers to be _de jure divino_, while I was in the
Anglican Church;--not that I saw any difficulty in the doctrine; not
that in connexion with the history of St. Leo, of which I shall speak by
and by, the idea of his infallibility did not cross my mind, for it
did,--but after all, in my view the controversy did not turn upon it; it
turned upon the Faith and the Church. This was my issue of the
controversy from the beginning to the end. There was a contrariety of
claims between the Roman and Anglican religions, and the history of my
conversion is simply the process of working it out to a solution. In
1838 I illustrated it by the contrast presented to us between the
Madonna and Child, and a Calvary. The peculiarity of the Anglican
theology was this,--that it "supposed the Truth to be entirely objective
and detached, not" (as in the theology of Rome) "lying hid in the bosom
of the Church as if one with her, clinging to and (as it were) lost in
her embrace, but as being sole and unapproachable, as on the Cross or at
the Resurrection, with the Church close by, but in the background."

As I viewed the controversy in 1836 and 1838, so I viewed it in 1840 and
1841. In the British Critic of January 1840, after gradually
investigating how the matter lies between the Churches by means of a
dialogue, I end thus: "It would seem, that, in the above discussion,
each disputant has a strong point: our strong point is the argument from
Primitiveness, that of Romanists from Universality. It is a fact,
however it is to be accounted for, that Rome has added to the Creed; and
it is a fact, however we justify ourselves, that we are estranged from
the great body of Christians over the world. And each of these two facts
is at first sight a grave difficulty in the respective systems to which
they belong." Again, "While Rome, though not deferring to the Fathers,
recognizes them, and England, not deferring to the large body of the
Church, recognizes it, both Rome and England have a point to clear up."

And still more strongly, in July, 1841:

"If the Note of schism, on the one hand, lies against England, an
antagonist disgrace lies upon Rome, the Note of idolatry. Let us not be
mistaken here; we are neither accusing Rome of idolatry nor ourselves of
schism; we think neither charge tenable; but still the Roman Church
practises what is so like idolatry, and the English Church makes much of
what is so very like schism, that without deciding what is the duty of a
Roman Catholic towards the Church of England in her present state, we do
seriously think that members of the English Church have a providential
direction given them, how to comport themselves towards the Church of
Rome, while she is what she is."

One remark more about Antiquity and the _Via Media_. As time went on,
without doubting the strength of the Anglican argument from Antiquity, I
felt also that it was not merely our special plea, but our only one.
Also I felt that the _Via Media_, which was to represent it, was to be a
sort of remodelled and adapted Antiquity. This I advanced both in Home
Thoughts Abroad and in the Article of the British Critic which I have
analyzed above. But this circumstance, that after all we must use
private judgment upon Antiquity, created a sort of distrust of my theory
altogether, which in the conclusion of my Volume on the Prophetical
Office (1836-7) I express thus: "Now that our discussions draw to a
close, the thought, with which we entered on the subject, is apt to
recur, when the excitement of the inquiry has subsided, and weariness
has succeeded, that what has been said is but a dream, the wanton
exercise, rather than the practical conclusions of the intellect." And I
conclude the paragraph by anticipating a line of thought into which I
was, in the event, almost obliged to take refuge: "After all," I say,
"the Church is ever invisible in its day, and faith only apprehends it."
What was this, but to give up the Notes of a visible Church altogether,
whether the Catholic Note or the Apostolic?

       *       *       *       *       *

The Long Vacation of 1839 began early. There had been a great many
visitors to Oxford from Easter to Commemoration; and Dr. Pusey's party
had attracted attention, more, I think, than in any former year. I had
put away from me the controversy with Rome for more than two years. In
my Parochial Sermons the subject had at no time been introduced: there
had been nothing for two years, either in my Tracts or in the British
Critic, of a polemical character. I was returning, for the Vacation, to
the course of reading which I had many years before chosen as especially
my own. I have no reason to suppose that the thoughts of Rome came
across my mind at all. About the middle of June I began to study and
master the history of the Monophysites. I was absorbed in the doctrinal
question. This was from about June 13th to August 30th. It was during
this course of reading that for the first time a doubt came upon me of
the tenableness of Anglicanism. I recollect on the 30th of July
mentioning to a friend, whom I had accidentally met, how remarkable the
history was; but by the end of August I was seriously alarmed.

I have described in a former work, how the history affected me. My
stronghold was Antiquity; now here, in the middle of the fifth century,
I found, as it seemed to me, Christendom of the sixteenth and the
nineteenth centuries reflected. I saw my face in that mirror, and I was
a Monophysite. The Church of the _Via Media_ was in the position of the
Oriental communion, Rome was, where she now is; and the Protestants were
the Eutychians. Of all passages of history, since history has been, who
would have thought of going to the sayings and doings of old Eutyches,
that _delirus senex_, as (I think) Petavius calls him, and to the
enormities of the unprincipled Dioscorus, in order to be converted to

Now let it be simply understood that I am not writing controversially,
but with the one object of relating things as they happened to me in the
course of my conversion. With this view I will quote a passage from the
account, which I gave in 1850, of my reasonings and feelings in 1839:

"It was difficult to make out how the Eutychians or Monophysites were
heretics, unless Protestants and Anglicans were heretics also; difficult
to find arguments against the Tridentine Fathers, which did not tell
against the Fathers of Chalcedon; difficult to condemn the Popes of the
sixteenth century, without condemning the Popes of the fifth. The drama
of religion, and the combat of truth and error, were ever one and the
same. The principles and proceedings of the Church now, were those of
the Church then; the principles and proceedings of heretics then, were
those of Protestants now. I found it so,--almost fearfully; there was an
awful similitude, more awful, because so silent and unimpassioned,
between the dead records of the past and the feverish chronicle of the
present. The shadow of the fifth century was on the sixteenth. It was
like a spirit rising from the troubled waters of the old world, with the
shape and lineaments of the new. The Church then, as now, might be
called peremptory and stern, resolute, overbearing, and relentless; and
heretics were shifting, changeable, reserved, and deceitful, ever
courting civil power, and never agreeing together, except by its aid;
and the civil power was ever aiming at comprehensions, trying to put the
invisible out of view, and substituting expediency for faith. What was
the use of continuing the controversy, or defending my position, if,
after all, I was forging arguments for Arius or Eutyches, and turning
devil's advocate against the much-enduring Athanasius and the majestic
Leo? Be my soul with the Saints! and shall I lift up my hand against
them? Sooner may my right hand forget her cunning, and wither outright,
as his who once stretched it out against a prophet of God! anathema to a
whole tribe of Cranmers, Ridleys, Latimers, and Jewels! perish the names
of Bramhall, Ussher, Taylor, Stillingfleet, and Barrow from the face of
the earth, ere I should do ought but fall at their feet in love and in
worship, whose image was continually before my eyes, and whose musical
words were ever in my ears and on my tongue!"

Hardly had I brought my course of reading to a close, when the Dublin
Review of that same August was put into my hands, by friends who were
more favourable to the cause of Rome than I was myself. There was an
article in it on the "Anglican Claim" by Dr. Wiseman. This was about the
middle of September. It was on the Donatists, with an application to
Anglicanism. I read it, and did not see much in it. The Donatist
controversy was known to me for some years, as has appeared already. The
case was not parallel to that of the Anglican Church. St. Augustine in
Africa wrote against the Donatists in Africa. They were a furious party
who made a schism within the African Church, and not beyond its limits.
It was a case of Altar against Altar, of two occupants of the same See,
as that between the Non-jurors in England and the Established Church;
not the case of one Church against another, as of Rome against the
Oriental Monophysites. But my friend, an anxiously religious man, now,
as then, very dear to me, a Protestant still, pointed out the palmary
words of St. Augustine, which were contained in one of the extracts made
in the Review, and which had escaped my observation. "Securus judicat
orbis terrarum." He repeated these words again and again, and, when he
was gone, they kept ringing in my ears. "Securus judicat orbis
terrarum;" they were words which went beyond the occasion of the
Donatists: they applied to that of the Monophysites. They gave a cogency
to the Article, which had escaped me at first. They decided
ecclesiastical questions on a simpler rule than that of Antiquity; nay,
St. Augustine was one of the prime oracles of Antiquity; here then
Antiquity was deciding against itself. What a light was hereby thrown
upon every controversy in the Church! not that, for the moment, the
multitude may not falter in their judgment,--not that, in the Arian
hurricane, Sees more than can be numbered did not bend before its fury,
and fall off from St. Athanasius,--not that the crowd of Oriental
Bishops did not need to be sustained during the contest by the voice and
the eye of St. Leo; but that the deliberate judgment, in which the whole
Church at length rests and acquiesces, is an infallible prescription and
a final sentence against such portions of it as protest and secede. Who
can account for the impressions which are made on him? For a mere
sentence, the words of St. Augustine, struck me with a power which I
never had felt from any words before. To take a familiar instance, they
were like the "Turn again Whittington" of the chime; or, to take a more
serious one, they were like the "Tolle, lege,--Tolle, lege," of the
child, which converted St. Augustine himself. "Securus judicat orbis
terrarum!" By those great words of the ancient Father, interpreting and
summing up the long and varied course of ecclesiastical history, the
theory of the _Via Media_ was absolutely pulverized.

I became excited at the view thus opened upon me. I was just starting on
a round of visits; and I mentioned my state of mind to two most intimate
friends: I think to no others. After a while, I got calm, and at length
the vivid impression upon my imagination faded away. What I thought
about it on reflection, I will attempt to describe presently. I had to
determine its logical value, and its bearing upon my duty. Meanwhile, so
far as this was certain,--I had seen the shadow of a hand upon the wall.
It was clear that I had a good deal to learn on the question of the
Churches, and that perhaps some new light was coming upon me. He who has
seen a ghost, cannot be as if he had never seen it. The heavens had
opened and closed again. The thought for the moment had been, "The
Church of Rome will be found right after all;" and then it had vanished.
My old convictions remained as before.

At this time, I wrote my Sermon on Divine Calls, which I published in my
volume of Plain Sermons. It ends thus:--

"O that we could take that simple view of things, as to feel that the
one thing which lies before us is to please God! What gain is it to
please the world, to please the great, nay even to please those whom we
love, compared with this? What gain is it to be applauded, admired,
courted, followed,--compared with this one aim, of not being disobedient
to a heavenly vision? What can this world offer comparable with that
insight into spiritual things, that keen faith, that heavenly peace,
that high sanctity, that everlasting righteousness, that hope of glory,
which they have, who in sincerity love and follow our Lord Jesus Christ?
Let us beg and pray Him day by day to reveal Himself to our souls more
fully, to quicken our senses, to give us sight and hearing, taste and
touch of the world to come; so to work within us, that we may sincerely
say, 'Thou shalt guide me with Thy counsel, and after that receive me
with glory. Whom have I in heaven but Thee? and there is none upon earth
that I desire in comparison of Thee. My flesh and my heart faileth, but
God is the strength of my heart, and my portion for ever.'"

       *       *       *       *       *

Now to trace the succession of thoughts, and the conclusions, and the
consequent innovations on my previous belief, and the general conduct,
to which I was led, upon this sudden visitation. And first, I will say,
whatever comes of saying it, for I leave inferences to others, that for
years I must have had something of an habitual notion, though it was
latent, and had never led me to distrust my own convictions, that my
mind had not found its ultimate rest, and that in some sense or other I
was on journey. During the same passage across the Mediterranean in
which I wrote "Lead kindly light," I also wrote the verses, which are
found in the Lyra under the head of "Providences," beginning, "When I
look back." This was in 1833; and, since I have begun this narrative, I
have found a memorandum under the date of September 7, 1829, in which I
speak of myself, as "now in my rooms in Oriel College, slowly advancing
&c. and led on by God's hand blindly, not knowing whither He is taking
me." But, whatever this presentiment be worth, it was no protection
against the dismay and disgust, which I felt, in consequence of the
dreadful misgiving, of which I have been relating the history. The one
question was, what was I to do? I had to make up my mind for myself, and
others could not help me. I determined to be guided, not by my
imagination, but by my reason. And this I said over and over again in
the years which followed, both in conversation and in private letters.
Had it not been for this severe resolve, I should have been a Catholic
sooner than I was. Moreover, I felt on consideration a positive doubt,
on the other hand, whether the suggestion did not come from below. Then
I said to myself, Time alone can solve that question. It was my business
to go on as usual, to obey those convictions to which I had so long
surrendered myself, which still had possession of me, and on which my
new thoughts had no direct bearing. That new conception of things should
only so far influence me, as it had a logical claim to do so. If it came
from above, it would come again;--so I trusted,--and with more definite
outlines and greater cogency and consistency of proof. I thought of
Samuel, before "he knew the word of the Lord;" and therefore I went, and
lay down to sleep again. This was my broad view of the matter, and my
_primâ facie_ conclusion.

However, my new historical fact had already to a certain point a logical
force. Down had come the _Via Media_ as a definite theory or scheme,
under the blows of St. Leo. My "Prophetical Office" had come to pieces;
not indeed as an argument against "Roman errors," nor as against
Protestantism, but as in behalf of England. I had no longer a
distinctive plea for Anglicanism, unless I would be a Monophysite. I
had, most painfully, to fall back upon my three original points of
belief, which I have spoken so much of in a former passage,--the
principle of dogma, the sacramental system, and anti-Romanism. Of these
three, the first two were better secured in Rome than in the Anglican
Church. The Apostolical Succession, the two prominent sacraments, and
the primitive Creeds, belonged, indeed, to the latter; but there had
been and was far less strictness on matters of dogma and ritual in the
Anglican system than in the Roman: in consequence, my main argument for
the Anglican claims lay in the positive and special charges, which I
could bring against Rome. I had no positive Anglican theory. I was very
nearly a pure Protestant. Lutherans had a sort of theology, so had
Calvinists; I had none.

However, this pure Protestantism, to which I was gradually left, was
really a practical principle. It was a strong, though it was only a
negative ground, and it still had great hold on me. As a boy of fifteen,
I had so fully imbibed it, that I had actually erased in my _Gradus ad
Parnassum_, such titles, under the word "Papa," as "Christi Vicarius,"
"sacer interpres," and "sceptra gerens," and substituted epithets so
vile that I cannot bring myself to write them down here. The effect of
this early persuasion remained as, what I have already called it, a
"stain upon my imagination." As regards my reason, I began in 1833 to
form theories on the subject, which tended to obliterate it; yet by 1838
I had got no further than to consider Antichrist, as not the Church of
Rome, but the spirit of the old pagan city, the fourth monster of
Daniel, which was still alive, and which had corrupted the Church which
was planted there. Soon after this indeed, and before my attention was
directed to the Monophysite controversy, I underwent a great change of
opinion. I saw that, from the nature of the case, the true Vicar of
Christ must ever to the world seem like Antichrist, and be stigmatized
as such, because a resemblance must ever exist between an original and a
forgery; and thus the fact of such a calumny was almost one of the notes
of the Church. But we cannot unmake ourselves or change our habits in a
moment. Though my reason was convinced, I did not throw off, for some
time after,--I could not have thrown off,--the unreasoning prejudice and
suspicion, which I cherished about her at least by fits and starts, in
spite of this conviction of my reason. I cannot prove this, but I
believe it to have been the case from what I recollect of myself. Nor
was there any thing in the history of St. Leo and the Monophysites to
undo the firm belief I had in the existence of what I called the
practical abuses and excesses of Rome.

To her inconsistencies then, to her ambition and intrigue, to her
sophistries (as I considered them to be) I now had recourse in my
opposition to her, both public and personal. I did so by way of a
relief. I had a great and growing dislike, after the summer of 1839, to
speak against the Roman Church herself or her formal doctrines. I was
very averse to speaking against doctrines, which might possibly turn out
to be true, though at the time I had no reason for thinking they were;
or against the Church, which had preserved them. I began to have
misgivings, that, strong as my own feelings had been against her, yet in
some things which I had said, I had taken the statements of Anglican
divines for granted without weighing them for myself. I said to a friend
in 1840, in a letter, which I shall use presently, "I am troubled by
doubts whether as it is, I have not, in what I have published, spoken
too strongly against Rome, though I think I did it in a kind of faith,
being determined to put myself into the English system, and say all that
our divines said, whether I had fully weighed it or not." I was sore
about the great Anglican divines, as if they had taken me in, and made
me say strong things, which facts did not justify. Yet I _did_ still
hold in substance all that I had said against the Church of Rome in my
Prophetical Office. I felt the force of the usual Protestant objections
against her; I believed that we had the Apostolical succession in the
Anglican Church, and the grace of the sacraments; I was not sure that
the difficulty of its isolation might not be overcome, though I was far
from sure that it could. I did not see any clear proof that it had
committed itself to any heresy, or had taken part against the truth; and
I was not sure that it would not revive into full Apostolic purity and
strength, and grow into union with Rome herself (Rome explaining her
doctrines and guarding against their abuse), that is, if we were but
patient and hopeful. I began to wish for union between the Anglican
Church and Rome, if, and when, it was possible; and I did what I could
to gain weekly prayers for that object. The ground which I felt to be
good against her was the moral ground: I felt I could not be wrong in
striking at her political and social line of action. The alliance of a
dogmatic religion with liberals, high or low, seemed to me a
providential direction against moving towards Rome, and a better
"Preservative against Popery," than the three volumes in folio, in
which, I think, that prophylactic is to be found. However, on occasions
which demanded it, I felt it a duty to give out plainly all that I
thought, though I did not like to do so. One such instance occurred,
when I had to publish a Letter about Tract 90. In that Letter, I said,
"Instead of setting before the soul the Holy Trinity, and heaven and
hell, the Church of Rome does seem to me, as a popular system, to preach
the Blessed Virgin and the Saints, and purgatory." On this occasion I
recollect expressing to a friend the distress it gave me thus to speak;
but, I said, "How can I help saying it, if I think it? and I _do_ think
it; my Bishop calls on me to say out what I think; and that is the long
and the short of it." But I recollected Hurrell Froude's words to me,
almost his dying words, "I must enter another protest against your
cursing and swearing. What good can it do? and I call it uncharitable to
an excess. How mistaken we may ourselves be, on many points that are
only gradually opening on us!"

Instead then of speaking of errors in doctrine, I was driven, by my
state of mind, to insist upon the political conduct, the controversial
bearing, and the social methods and manifestations of Rome. And here I
found a matter ready to my hand, which affected me the more sensibly for
the reason that it lay at our very doors. I can hardly describe too
strongly my feeling upon it. I had an unspeakable aversion to the policy
and acts of Mr. O'Connell, because, as I thought, he associated himself
with men of all religions and no religion against the Anglican Church,
and advanced Catholicism by violence and intrigue. When then I found him
taken up by the English Catholics, and, as I supposed, at Rome, I
considered I had a fulfilment before my eyes how the Court of Rome
played fast and loose, and justified the serious charges which I had
seen put down in books against it. Here we saw what Rome was in action,
whatever she might be when quiescent. Her conduct was simply secular and

This feeling led me into the excess of being very rude to that zealous
and most charitable man, Mr. Spencer, when he came to Oxford in January,
1840, to get Anglicans to set about praying for Unity. I myself, at that
time, or soon after, drew up such prayers; their desirableness was one
of the first thoughts which came upon me after my shock; but I was too
much annoyed with the political action of the Catholic body in these
islands to wish to have any thing to do with them personally. So glad in
my heart was I to see him, when he came to my rooms with Mr. Palmer of
Magdalen, that I could have laughed for joy; I think I did laugh; but I
was very rude to him, I would not meet him at dinner, and that, (though
I did not say so,) because I considered him "in loco apostatæ" from the
Anglican Church, and I hereby beg his pardon for it. I wrote afterwards
with a view to apologize, but I dare say he must have thought that I
made the matter worse, for these were my words to him:--

"The news that you are praying for us is most touching, and raises a
variety of indescribable emotions.... May their prayers return
abundantly into their own bosoms.... Why then do I not meet you in a
manner conformable with these first feelings? For this single reason, if
I may say it, that your acts are contrary to your words. You invite us
to a union of hearts, at the same time that you are doing all you can,
not to restore, not to reform, not to re-unite, but to destroy our
Church. You go further than your principles require. You are leagued
with our enemies. 'The voice is Jacob's voice, but the hands are the
hands of Esau.' This is what especially distresses us; this is what we
cannot understand; how Christians, like yourselves, with the clear view
you have that a warfare is ever waging in the world between good and
evil, should, in the present state of England, ally yourselves with the
side of evil against the side of good.... Of parties now in the country,
you cannot but allow, that next to yourselves we are nearest to revealed
truth. We maintain great and holy principles; we profess Catholic
doctrines.... So near are we as a body to yourselves in modes of
thinking, as even to have been taunted with the nicknames which belong
to you; and, on the other hand, if there are professed infidels,
scoffers, sceptics, unprincipled men, rebels, they are found among our
opponents. And yet you take part with them against us.... You consent to
act hand in hand [with these and others] for our overthrow. Alas! all
this it is that impresses us irresistibly with the notion that you are a
political, not a religious party; that in order to gain an end on which
you set your hearts,--an open stage for yourselves in England,--you ally
yourselves with those who hold nothing against those who hold something.
This is what distresses my own mind so greatly, to speak of myself,
that, with limitations which need not now be mentioned, I cannot meet
familiarly any leading persons of the Roman Communion, and least of all
when they come on a religious errand. Break off, I would say, with Mr.
O'Connell in Ireland and the liberal party in England, or come not to us
with overtures for mutual prayer and religious sympathy."

And here came in another feeling, of a personal nature, which had little
to do with the argument against Rome, except that, in my prejudice, I
viewed what happened to myself in the light of my own ideas of the
traditionary conduct of her advocates and instruments. I was very stern
in the case of any interference in our Oxford matters on the part of
charitable Catholics, and of any attempt to do me good personally. There
was nothing, indeed, at the time more likely to throw me back. "Why do
you meddle? why cannot you let me alone? You can do me no good; you know
nothing on earth about me; you may actually do me harm; I am in better
hands than yours. I know my own sincerity of purpose; and I am
determined upon taking my time." Since I have been a Catholic, people
have sometimes accused me of backwardness in making converts; and
Protestants have argued from it that I have no great eagerness to do so.
It would be against my nature to act otherwise than I do; but besides,
it would be to forget the lessons which I gained in the experience of my
own history in the past.

This is the account which I have to give of some savage and ungrateful
words in the British Critic of 1840 against the controversialists of
Rome: "By their fruits ye shall know them.... We see it attempting to
gain converts among us by unreal representations of its doctrines,
plausible statements, bold assertions, appeals to the weaknesses of
human nature, to our fancies, our eccentricities, our fears, our
frivolities, our false philosophies. We see its agents, smiling and
nodding and ducking to attract attention, as gipsies make up to truant
boys, holding out tales for the nursery, and pretty pictures, and gilt
gingerbread, and physic concealed in jam, and sugar-plums for good
children. Who can but feel shame when the religion of Ximenes, Borromeo,
and Pascal, is so overlaid? Who can but feel sorrow, when its devout and
earnest defenders so mistake its genius and its capabilities? We
Englishmen like manliness, openness, consistency, truth. Rome will never
gain on us, till she learns these virtues, and uses them; and then she
_may_ gain us, but it will be by ceasing to be what we now mean by Rome,
by having a right, not to 'have dominion over our faith,' but to gain
and possess our affections in the bonds of the gospel. Till she ceases
to be what she practically is, a union is impossible between her and
England; but, if she does reform, (and who can presume to say that so
large a part of Christendom never can?) then it will be our Church's
duty at once to join in communion with the continental Churches,
whatever politicians at home may say to it, and whatever steps the civil
power may take in consequence. And though we may not live to see that
day, at least we are bound to pray for it; we are bound to pray for our
brethren that they and we may be led together into the pure light of the
gospel, and be one as we once were one. It was most touching news to be
told, as we were lately, that Christians on the Continent were praying
together for the spiritual well-being of England. May they gain light,
while they aim at unity, and grow in faith while they manifest their
love! We too have our duties to them; not of reviling, not of
slandering, not of hating, though political interests require it; but
the duty of loving brethren still more abundantly in spirit, whose
faces, for our sins and their sins, we are not allowed to see in the

No one ought to indulge in insinuations; it certainly diminishes my
right to complain of slanders uttered against myself, when, as in this
passage, I had already spoken in disparagement of the controversialists
of that religious body, to which I myself now belong.

       *       *       *       *       *

I have thus put together, as well as I can, what has to be said about my
general state of mind from the autumn of 1839 to the summer of 1841;
and, having done so, I go on to narrate how my new misgivings affected
my conduct, and my relations towards the Anglican Church.

When I got back to Oxford in October, 1839, after the visits which I had
been paying, it so happened, there had been, in my absence, occurrences
of an awkward character, compromising me both with my Bishop and also
with the authorities of the University; and this drew my attention at
once to the state of the Movement party there, and made me very anxious
for the future. In the spring of the year, as has been seen in the
Article analyzed above, I had spoken of the excesses which were to be
found among persons commonly included in it:--at that time I thought
little of such an evil, but the new views, which had come on me during
the Long Vacation, on the one hand made me comprehend it, and on the
other took away my power of effectually meeting it. A firm and powerful
control was necessary to keep men straight; I never had a strong wrist,
but at the very time, when it was most needed, the reins had broken in
my hands. With an anxious presentiment on my mind of the upshot of the
whole inquiry, which it was almost impossible for me to conceal from men
who saw me day by day, who heard my familiar conversation, who came
perhaps for the express purpose of pumping me, and having a categorical
_yes_ or _no_ to their questions,--how could I expect to say any thing
about my actual, positive, present belief, which would be sustaining or
consoling to such persons as were haunted already by doubts of their
own? Nay, how could I, with satisfaction to myself, analyze my own mind,
and say what I held and what I did not hold? or how could I say with
what limitations, shades of difference, or degrees of belief, I still
held that body of Anglican opinions which I had openly professed and
taught? how could I deny or assert this point or that, without injustice
to the new light, in which the whole evidence for those old opinions
presented itself to my mind?

However, I had to do what I could, and what was best, under the
circumstances; I found a general talk on the subject of the Article in
the Dublin Review; and, if it had affected me, it was not wonderful,
that it affected others also. As to myself, I felt no kind of certainty
that the argument in it was conclusive. Taking it at the worst, granting
that the Anglican Church had not the Note of Catholicity; yet there were
many Notes of the Church. Some belonged to one age or place, some to
another. Bellarmine had reckoned Temporal Prosperity among the Notes of
the Church; but the Roman Church had not any great popularity, wealth,
glory, power, or prospects, in the nineteenth century. It was not at all
certain as yet, even that we had not the Note of Catholicity; but, if
not this, we had others. My first business then, was to examine this
question carefully, and see, whether a great deal could not be said
after all for the Anglican Church, in spite of its acknowledged
short-comings. This I did in an Article "on the Catholicity of the
English Church," which appeared in the British Critic of January, 1840.
As to my personal distress on the point, I think it had gone by February
21st in that year, for I wrote then to Mr. Bowden about the important
Article in the Dublin, thus: "It made a great impression here [Oxford];
and, I say what of course I would only say to such as yourself, it made
me for a while very uncomfortable in my own mind. The great speciousness
of his argument is one of the things which have made me despond so
much," that is, as anticipating its effect upon others.

But, secondly, the great stumbling-block lay in the 39 Articles. It was
urged that here was a positive Note _against_ Anglicanism:--Anglicanism
claimed to hold, that the Church of England was nothing else than a
continuation in this country, (as the Church of Rome might be in France
or Spain,) of that one Church of which in old times Athanasius and
Augustine were members. But, if so, the doctrine must be the same; the
doctrine of the Old Church must live and speak in Anglican formularies,
in the 39 Articles. Did it? Yes, it did; that is what I maintained; it
did in substance, in a true sense. Man had done his worst to disfigure,
to mutilate, the old Catholic Truth; but there it was, in spite of them,
in the Articles still. It was there,--but this must be shown. It was a
matter of life and death to us to show it. And I believed that it could
be shown; I considered that those grounds of justification, which I gave
above, when I was speaking of Tract 90, were sufficient for the purpose;
and therefore

I set about showing it at once. This was in March, 1840, when I went up
to Littlemore. And, as it was a matter of life and death with us, all
risks must be run to show it. When the attempt was actually made, I had
got reconciled to the prospect of it, and had no apprehensions as to the
experiment; but in 1840, while my purpose was honest, and my grounds of
reason satisfactory, I did nevertheless recognize that I was engaged in
an _experimentum crucis_. I have no doubt that then I acknowledged to
myself that it would be a trial of the Anglican Church, which it had
never undergone before,--not that the Catholic sense of the Articles had
not been held or at least suffered by their framers and promulgators,
not that it was not implied in the teaching of Andrewes or Beveridge,
but that it had never been publicly recognized, while the interpretation
of the day was Protestant and exclusive. I observe also, that, though my
Tract was an experiment, it was, as I said at the time, "no _feeler_";
the event showed this; for, when my principle was not granted, I did not
draw back, but gave up. I would not hold office in a Church which would
not allow my sense of the Articles. My tone was, "This is necessary for
us, and have it we must and will, and, if it tends to bring men to look
less bitterly on the Church of Rome, so much the better."

This then was the second work to which I set myself; though when I got
to Littlemore, other things interfered to prevent my accomplishing it at
the moment. I had in mind to remove all such obstacles as lay in the way
of holding the Apostolic and Catholic character of the Anglican
teaching; to assert the right of all who chose, to say in the face of
day, "Our Church teaches the Primitive Ancient faith." I did not conceal
this: in Tract 90, it is put forward as the first principle of all, "It
is a duty which we owe both to the Catholic Church, and to our own, to
take our reformed confessions in the most Catholic sense they will
admit: we have no duties towards their framers." And still more
pointedly in my Letter, explanatory of the Tract, addressed to Dr. Jelf,
I say: "The only peculiarity of the view I advocate, if I must so call
it, is this--that whereas it is usual at this day to make the
_particular belief of their writers_ their true interpretation, I would
make the _belief of the Catholic Church such_. That is, as it is often
said that infants are regenerated in Baptism, not on the faith of their
parents, but of the Church, so in like manner I would say that the
Articles are received, not in the sense of their framers, but (as far as
the wording will admit or any ambiguity requires it) in the one Catholic

A third measure which I distinctly contemplated, was the resignation of
St. Mary's, whatever became of the question of the 39 Articles; and as a
first step I meditated a retirement to Littlemore. Littlemore was an
integral part of St. Mary's Parish, and between two and three miles
distant from Oxford. I had built a Church there several years before;
and I went there to pass the Lent of 1840, and gave myself up to
teaching in the Parish School, and practising the choir. At the same
time, I had in view a monastic house there. I bought ten acres of ground
and began planting; but this great design was never carried out. I
mention it, because it shows how little I had really the idea at that
time of ever leaving the Anglican Church. That I contemplated as early
as 1839 the further step of giving up St. Mary's, appears from a letter
which I wrote in October, 1840, to Mr. Keble, the friend whom it was
most natural for me to consult on such a point. It ran as follows:--

"For a year past a feeling has been growing on me that I ought to give
up St. Mary's, but I am no fit judge in the matter. I cannot ascertain
accurately my own impressions and convictions, which are the basis of
the difficulty, and though you cannot of course do this for me, yet you
may help me generally, and perhaps supersede the necessity of my going
by them at all.

"First, it is certain that I do not know my Oxford parishioners; I am
not conscious of influencing them, and certainly I have no insight into
their spiritual state. I have no personal, no pastoral acquaintance with
them. To very few have I any opportunity of saying a religious word.
Whatever influence I exert on them is precisely that which I may be
exerting on persons out of my parish. In my excuse I am accustomed to
say to myself that I am not adapted to get on with them, while others
are. On the other hand, I am conscious that by means of my position at
St. Mary's, I do exert a considerable influence on the University,
whether on Under-graduates or Graduates. It seems, then, on the whole
that I am using St. Mary's, to the neglect of its direct duties, for
objects not belonging to it; I am converting a parochial charge into a
sort of University office.

"I think I may say truly that I have begun scarcely any plan but for the
sake of my parish, but every one has turned, independently of me, into
the direction of the University. I began Saints'-days Services, daily
Services, and Lectures in Adam de Brome's Chapel, for my parishioners;
but they have not come to them. In consequence I dropped the last
mentioned, having, while it lasted, been naturally led to direct it to
the instruction of those who did come, instead of those who did not. The
Weekly Communion, I believe, I did begin for the sake of the University.

"Added to this the authorities of the University, the appointed
guardians of those who form great part of the attendants on my Sermons,
have shown a dislike of my preaching. One dissuades men from
coming;--the late Vice-Chancellor threatens to take his own children
away from the Church; and the present, having an opportunity last spring
of preaching in my parish pulpit, gets up and preaches against doctrine
with which I am in good measure identified. No plainer proof can be
given of the feeling in these quarters, than the absurd myth, now a
second time put forward, 'that Vice-Chancellors cannot be got to take
the office on account of Puseyism.'

"But further than this, I cannot disguise from myself that my preaching
is not calculated to defend that system of religion which has been
received for 300 years, and of which the Heads of Houses are the
legitimate maintainers in this place. They exclude me, as far as may be,
from the University Pulpit; and, though I never have preached strong
doctrine in it, they do so rightly, so far as this, that they understand
that my sermons are calculated to undermine things established. I cannot
disguise from myself that they are. No one will deny that most of my
sermons are on moral subjects, not doctrinal; still I am leading my
hearers to the Primitive Church, if you will, but not to the Church of
England. Now, ought one to be disgusting the minds of young men with the
received religion, in the exercise of a sacred office, yet without a
commission, and against the wish of their guides and governors?

"But this is not all. I fear I must allow that, whether I will or no, I
am disposing them towards Rome. First, because Rome is the only
representative of the Primitive Church besides ourselves; in proportion
then as they are loosened from the one, they will go to the other. Next,
because many doctrines which I have held have far greater, or their only
scope, in the Roman system. And, moreover, if, as is not unlikely, we
have in process of time heretical Bishops or teachers among us, an evil
which _ipso facto_ infects the whole community to which they belong, and
if, again (what there are at this moment symptoms of), there be a
movement in the English Roman Catholics to break the alliance of
O'Connell and of Exeter Hall, strong temptations will be placed in the
way of individuals, already imbued with a tone of thought congenial to
Rome, to join her Communion.

"People tell me, on the other hand, that I am, whether by sermons or
otherwise, exerting at St. Mary's a beneficial influence on our
prospective clergy; but what if I take to myself the credit of seeing
further than they, and of having in the course of the last year
discovered that what they approve so much is very likely to end in

"The _arguments_ which I have published against Romanism seem to myself
as cogent as ever, but men go by their sympathies, not by argument; and
if I feel the force of this influence myself, who bow to the arguments,
why may not others still more, who never have in the same degree
admitted the arguments?

"Nor can I counteract the danger by preaching or writing against Rome. I
seem to myself almost to have shot my last arrow in the Article on
English Catholicity. It must be added, that the very circumstance that I
have committed myself against Rome has the effect of setting to sleep
people suspicious about me, which is painful now that I begin to have
suspicions about myself. I mentioned my general difficulty to Rogers a
year since, than whom I know no one of a more fine and accurate
conscience, and it was his spontaneous idea that I should give up St.
Mary's, if my feelings continued. I mentioned it again to him lately,
and he did not reverse his opinion, only expressed great reluctance to
believe it must be so."

Mr. Keble's judgment was in favour of my retaining my living; at least
for the present; what weighed with me most was his saying, "You must
consider, whether your retiring either from the Pastoral Care only, or
from writing and printing and editing in the cause, would not be a sort
of scandalous thing, unless it were done very warily. It would be said,
'You see he can go on no longer with the Church of England, except in
mere Lay Communion;' or people might say you repented of the cause
altogether. Till you see [your way to mitigate, if not remove this evil]
I certainly should advise you to stay." I answered as follows:--

"Since you think I _may_ go on, it seems to follow that, under the
circumstances, I _ought_ to do so. There are plenty of reasons for it,
directly it is allowed to be lawful. The following considerations have
much reconciled my feelings to your conclusion.

"1. I do not think that we have yet made fair trial how much the English
Church will bear. I know it is a hazardous experiment,--like proving
cannon. Yet we must not take it for granted that the metal will burst in
the operation. It has borne at various times, not to say at this time, a
great infusion of Catholic truth without damage. As to the result, viz.
whether this process will not approximate the whole English Church, as a
body, to Rome, that is nothing to us. For what we know, it may be the
providential means of uniting the whole Church in one, without fresh
schismatizing or use of private judgment."

Here I observe, that, what was contemplated was the bursting of the
_Catholicity_ of the Anglican Church, that is, my _subjective idea_ of
that Church. Its bursting would not hurt her with the world, but would
be a discovery that she was purely and essentially Protestant, and would
be really the "hoisting of the engineer with his own petar." And this
was the result. I continue:--

"2. Say, that I move sympathies for Rome: in the same sense does Hooker,
Taylor, Bull, &c. Their _arguments_ may be against Rome, but the
sympathies they raise must be towards Rome, _so far_ as Rome maintains
truths which our Church does not teach or enforce. Thus it is a question
of _degree_ between our divines and me. I may, if so be, go further; I
may raise sympathies _more_; but I am but urging minds in the same
direction as they do. I am doing just the very thing which all our
doctors have ever been doing. In short, would not Hooker, if Vicar of
St. Mary's, be in my difficulty?"--Here it may be objected, that Hooker
could preach against Rome and I could not; but I doubt whether he could
have preached effectively against Transubstantiation better than I,
though neither he nor I held that doctrine.

"3. Rationalism is the great evil of the day. May not I consider my post
at St. Mary's as a place of protest against it? I am more certain that
the Protestant [spirit], which I oppose, leads to infidelity, than that
which I recommend, leads to Rome. Who knows what the state of the
University may be, as regards Divinity Professors in a few years hence?
Any how, a great battle may be coming on, of which Milman's book is a
sort of earnest. The whole of _our_ day may be a battle with this
spirit. May we not leave to another age _its own_ evil,--to settle the
question of Romanism?"

I may add that from this time I had a curate at St. Mary's, who
gradually took more and more of my work.

Also, this same year, 1840, I made arrangements for giving up the
British Critic, in the following July, which were carried into effect at
that date.

       *       *       *       *       *

Such was about my state of mind, on the publication of Tract 90 in
February 1841. I was indeed in prudence taking steps towards eventually
withdrawing from St. Mary's, and I was not confident about my permanent
adhesion to the Anglican creed; but I was in no actual perplexity or
trouble of mind. Nor did the immense commotion consequent upon the
publication of the Tract unsettle me again; for I fancied I had
weathered the storm, as far as the Bishops were concerned: the Tract had
not been condemned: that was the great point, and I made much of it.

To illustrate my feelings during this trial, I will make extracts from
my letters addressed severally to Mr. Bowden and another friend, which
have come into my possession.

1. March 15.--"The Heads, I believe, have just done a violent act: they
have said that my interpretation of the Articles is an _evasion_. Do not
think that this will pain me. You see, no _doctrine_ is censured, and my
shoulders shall manage to bear the charge. If you knew all, or were
here, you would see that I have asserted a great principle, and I
_ought_ to suffer for it:--that the Articles are to be interpreted, not
according to the meaning of the writers, but (as far as the wording will
admit) according to the sense of the Catholic Church."

2. March 25.--"I do trust I shall make no false step, and hope my
friends will pray for me to this effect. If, as you say, a destiny hangs
over us, a single false step may ruin all. I am very well and
comfortable; but we are not yet out of the wood."

3. April 1.--"The Bishop sent me word on Sunday to write a Letter to him
'_instanter_.' So I wrote it on Monday: on Tuesday it passed through the
press: on Wednesday it was out: and to-day [Thursday] it is in London.

"I trust that things are smoothing now; and that we have made a _great
step_ is certain. It is not right to boast, till I am clear out of the
wood, i.e. till I know how the Letter is received in London. You know, I
suppose, that I am to stop the Tracts; but you will see in the Letter,
though I speak _quite_ what I feel, yet I have managed to take out on
_my_ side my snubbing's worth. And this makes me anxious how it will be
received in London.

"I have not had a misgiving for five minutes from the first: but I do
not like to boast, lest some harm come."

4. April 4.--"Your letter of this morning was an exceedingly great
gratification to me; and it is confirmed, I am thankful to say, by the
opinion of others. The Bishop sent me a message that my Letter had his
unqualified approbation; and since that, he has sent me a note to the
same effect, only going more into detail. It is most pleasant too to my
feelings, to have such a testimony to the substantial truth and
importance of No. 90, as I have had from so many of my friends, from
those who, from their cautious turn of mind, I was least sanguine about.
I have not had one misgiving myself about it throughout; and I do trust
that what has happened will be overruled to subserve the great cause we
all have at heart."

5. May 9.--"The Bishops are very desirous of hushing the matter up: and
I certainly have done my utmost to co-operate with them, on the
understanding that the Tract is not to be withdrawn or condemned."

Upon this occasion several Catholics wrote to me; I answered one of my
correspondents in the same tone:--

"April 8.--You have no cause to be surprised at the discontinuance of
the Tracts. We feel no misgivings about it whatever, as if the cause of
what we hold to be Catholic truth would suffer thereby. My letter to my
Bishop has, I trust, had the effect of bringing the preponderating
_authority_ of the Church on our side. No stopping of the Tracts can,
humanly speaking, stop the spread of the opinions which they have

"The Tracts are not _suppressed_. No doctrine or principle has been
conceded by us, or condemned by authority. The Bishop has but said that
a certain Tract is 'objectionable,' no reason being stated, I have no
intention whatever of yielding any one point which I hold on conviction;
and that the authorities of the Church know full well."

       *       *       *       *       *

In the summer of 1841, I found myself at Littlemore without any harass
or anxiety on my mind. I had determined to put aside all controversy,
and I set myself down to my translation of St. Athanasius; but, between
July and November, I received three blows which broke me.

1. I had got but a little way in my work, when my trouble returned on
me. The ghost had come a second time. In the Arian History I found the
very same phenomenon, in a far bolder shape, which I had found in the
Monophysite. I had not observed it in 1832. Wonderful that this should
come upon me! I had not sought it out; I was reading and writing in my
own line of study, far from the controversies of the day, on what is
called a "metaphysical" subject; but I saw clearly, that in the history
of Arianism, the pure Arians were the Protestants, the semi-Arians were
the Anglicans, and that Rome now was what it was then. The truth lay,
not with the _Via Media_, but with what was called "the extreme party."
As I am not writing a work of controversy, I need not enlarge upon the
argument; I have said something on the subject in a Volume, from which I
have already quoted.

2. I was in the misery of this new unsettlement, when a second blow came
upon me. The Bishops one after another began to charge against me. It
was a formal, determinate movement. This was the real "understanding;"
that, on which I had acted on the first appearance of Tract 90, had come
to nought. I think the words, which had then been used to me, were, that
"perhaps two or three of them might think it necessary to say something
in their charges;" but by this time they had tided over the difficulty
of the Tract, and there was no one to enforce the "understanding." They
went on in this way, directing charges at me, for three whole years. I
recognized it as a condemnation; it was the only one that was in their
power. At first I intended to protest; but I gave up the thought in

On October 17th, I wrote thus to a friend: "I suppose it will be
necessary in some shape or other to re-assert Tract 90; else, it will
seem, after these Bishops' Charges, as if it were silenced, which it has
not been, nor do I intend it should be. I wish to keep quiet; but if
Bishops speak, I will speak too. If the view were silenced, I could not
remain in the Church, nor could many others; and therefore, since it is
_not_ silenced, I shall take care to show that it isn't."

A day or two after, Oct. 22, a stranger wrote to me to say, that the
Tracts for the Times had made a young friend of his a Catholic, and to
ask, "would I be so good as to convert him back;" I made answer:

"If conversions to Rome take place in consequence of the Tracts for the
Times, I do not impute blame to them, but to those who, instead of
acknowledging such Anglican principles of theology and ecclesiastical
polity as they contain, set themselves to oppose them. Whatever be the
influence of the Tracts, great or small, they may become just as
powerful for Rome, if our Church refuses them, as they would be for our
Church if she accepted them. If our rulers speak either against the
Tracts, or not at all, if any number of them, not only do not favour,
but even do not suffer the principles contained in them, it is plain
that our members may easily be persuaded either to give up those
principles, or to give up the Church. If this state of things goes on, I
mournfully prophesy, not one or two, but many secessions to the Church
of Rome."

Two years afterwards, looking back on what had passed, I said, "There
were no converts to Rome, till after the condemnation of No. 90."

3. As if all this were not enough, there came the affair of the
Jerusalem Bishopric; and, with a brief mention of it, I shall conclude.

I think I am right in saying that it had been long a desire with the
Prussian Court to introduce Episcopacy into the new Evangelical
Religion, which was intended in that country to embrace both the
Lutheran and Calvinistic bodies. I almost think I heard of the project,
when I was at Rome in 1833, at the Hotel of the Prussian Minister, M.
Bunsen, who was most hospitable and kind, as to other English visitors,
so also to my friends and myself. The idea of Episcopacy, as the
Prussian king understood it, was, I suppose, very different from that
taught in the Tractarian School: but still, I suppose also, that the
chief authors of that school would have gladly seen such a measure
carried out in Prussia, had it been done without compromising those
principles which were necessary to the being of a Church. About the time
of the publication of Tract 90, M. Bunsen and the then Archbishop of
Canterbury were taking steps for its execution, by appointing and
consecrating a Bishop for Jerusalem. Jerusalem, it would seem, was
considered a safe place for the experiment; it was too far from Prussia
to awaken the susceptibilities of any party at home; if the project
failed, it failed without harm to any one; and, if it succeeded, it gave
Protestantism a _status_ in the East, which, in association with the
Monophysite or Jacobite and the Nestorian bodies, formed a political
instrument for England, parallel to that which Russia had in the Greek
Church, and France in the Latin.

Accordingly, in July 1841, full of the Anglican difficulty on the
question of Catholicity, I thus spoke of the Jerusalem scheme in an
Article in the British Critic: "When our thoughts turn to the East,
instead of recollecting that there are Christian Churches there, we
leave it to the Russians to take care of the Greeks, and the French to
take care of the Romans, and we content ourselves with erecting a
Protestant Church at Jerusalem, or with helping the Jews to rebuild
their Temple there, or with becoming the august protectors of
Nestorians, Monophysites, and all the heretics we can hear of, or with
forming a league with the Mussulman against Greeks and Romans together."

I do not pretend, so long after the time, to give a full or exact
account of this measure in detail. I will but say that in the Act of
Parliament, under date of October 5, 1841, (if the copy, from which I
quote, contains the measure as it passed the Houses,) provision is made
for the consecration of "British subjects, or the subjects or citizens
of any foreign state, to be Bishops in any foreign country, whether such
foreign subjects or citizens be or be not subjects or citizens of the
country in which they are to act, and ... without requiring such of them
as may be subjects or citizens of any foreign kingdom or state to take
the oaths of allegiance and supremacy, and the oath of due obedience to
the Archbishop for the time being" ... also "that such Bishop or
Bishops, so consecrated, may exercise, within such limits, as may from
time to time be assigned for that purpose in such foreign countries by
her Majesty, spiritual jurisdiction over the ministers of British
congregations of the United Church of England and Ireland, and over
_such other Protestant_ Congregations, as may be desirous of placing
themselves under his or their authority."

Now here, at the very time that the Anglican Bishops were directing
their censure upon me for avowing an approach to the Catholic Church not
closer than I believed the Anglican formularies would allow, they were
on the other hand, fraternizing, by their act or by their sufferance,
with Protestant bodies, and allowing them to put themselves under an
Anglican Bishop, without any renunciation of their errors or regard to
their due reception of baptism and confirmation; while there was great
reason to suppose that the said Bishop was intended to make converts
from the orthodox Greeks, and the schismatical Oriental bodies, by means
of the influence of England. This was the third blow, which finally
shattered my faith in the Anglican Church. That Church was not only
forbidding any sympathy or concurrence with the Church of Rome, but it
actually was courting an intercommunion with Protestant Prussia and the
heresy of the Orientals. The Anglican Church might have the Apostolical
succession, as had the Monophysites; but such acts as were in progress
led me to the gravest suspicion, not that it would soon cease to be a
Church, but that, since the 16th century, it had never been a Church all

On October 12th, I thus wrote to Mr. Bowden:--"We have not a single
Anglican in Jerusalem; so we are sending a Bishop to _make_ a communion,
not to govern our own people. Next, the excuse is, that there are
converted Anglican Jews there who require a Bishop; I am told there are
not half-a-dozen. But for _them_ the Bishop is sent out, and for them he
is a Bishop of the _circumcision_" (I think he was a converted Jew, who
boasted of his Jewish descent), "against the Epistle to the Galatians
pretty nearly. Thirdly, for the sake of Prussia, he is to take under him
all the foreign Protestants who will come; and the political advantages
will be so great, from the influence of England, that there is no doubt
they _will_ come. They are to sign the Confession of Augsburg, and there
is nothing to show that they hold the doctrine of Baptismal

"As to myself, I shall do nothing whatever publicly, unless indeed it
were to give my signature to a Protest; but I think it would be out of
place in _me_ to agitate, having been in a way silenced; but the
Archbishop is really doing most grave work, of which we cannot see the

I did make a solemn Protest, and sent it to the Archbishop of
Canterbury, and also sent it to my own Bishop with the following

"It seems as if I were never to write to your Lordship, without giving
you pain, and I know that my present subject does not specially concern
your Lordship; yet, after a great deal of anxious thought, I lay before
you the enclosed Protest.

"Your Lordship will observe that I am not asking for any notice of it,
unless you think that I ought to receive one. I do this very serious act
in obedience to my sense of duty.

"If the English Church is to enter on a new course, and assume a new
aspect, it will be more pleasant to me hereafter to think, that I did
not suffer so grievous an event to happen, without bearing witness
against it.

"May I be allowed to say, that I augur nothing but evil, if we in any
respect prejudice our title to be a branch of the Apostolic Church? That
Article of the Creed, I need hardly observe to your Lordship, is of such
constraining power, that, if _we_ will not claim it, and use it for
ourselves, _others_ will use it in their own behalf against us. Men who
learn whether by means of documents or measures, whether from the
statements or the acts of persons in authority, that our communion is
not a branch of the One Church, I foresee with much grief, will be
tempted to look out for that Church elsewhere.

"It is to me a subject of great dismay, that, as far as the Church has
lately spoken out, on the subject of the opinions which I and others
hold, those opinions are, not merely not _sanctioned_ (for that I do not
ask), but not even _suffered_.

"I earnestly hope that your Lordship will excuse my freedom in thus
speaking to you of some members of your Most Rev. and Right Rev. Body.
With every feeling of reverent attachment to your Lordship,

"I am, &c."


"Whereas the Church of England has a claim on the allegiance of Catholic
believers only on the ground of her own claim to be considered a branch
of the Catholic Church:

"And whereas the recognition of heresy, indirect as well as direct, goes
far to destroy such claim in the case of any religious body:

"And whereas to admit maintainers of heresy to communion, without formal
renunciation of their errors, goes far towards recognizing the same:

"And whereas Lutheranism and Calvinism are heresies, repugnant to
Scripture, springing up three centuries since, and anathematized by East
as well as West:

"And whereas it is reported that the Most Reverend Primate and other
Right Reverend Rulers of our Church have consecrated a Bishop with a
view to exercising spiritual jurisdiction over Protestant, that is,
Lutheran and Calvinist congregations in the East (under the provisions
of an Act made in the last session of Parliament to amend an Act made in
the 26th year of the reign of his Majesty King George the Third,
intituled, 'An Act to empower the Archbishop of Canterbury, or the
Archbishop of York for the time being, to consecrate to the office of
Bishop persons being subjects or citizens of countries out of his
Majesty's dominions'), dispensing at the same time, not in particular
cases and accidentally, but as if on principle and universally, with any
abjuration of error on the part of such congregations, and with any
reconciliation to the Church on the part of the presiding Bishop;
thereby giving some sort of formal recognition to the doctrines which
such congregations maintain:

"And whereas the dioceses in England are connected together by so close
an intercommunion, that what is done by authority in one, immediately
affects the rest:

"On these grounds, I in my place, being a priest of the English Church
and Vicar of St. Mary the Virgin's, Oxford, by way of relieving my
conscience, do hereby solemnly protest against the measure aforesaid,
and disown it, as removing our Church from her present ground and
tending to her disorganization.

"John Henry Newman.

"November 11, 1841."

       *       *       *       *       *

Looking back two years afterwards on the above-mentioned and other acts,
on the part of Anglican Ecclesiastical authorities, I observed: "Many a
man might have held an abstract theory about the Catholic Church, to
which it was difficult to adjust the Anglican,--might have admitted a
suspicion, or even painful doubts about the latter,--yet never have been
impelled onwards, had our Rulers preserved the quiescence of former
years; but it is the corroboration of a present, living, and energetic
heterodoxy, that realizes and makes such doubts practical; it has been
the recent speeches and acts of authorities, who had so long been
tolerant of Protestant error, which has given to inquiry and to theory
its force and its edge."

As to the project of a Jerusalem Bishopric, I never heard of any good or
harm it has ever done, except what it has done for me; which many think
a great misfortune, and I one of the greatest of mercies. It brought me
on to the beginning of the end.



§ 1.

From the end of 1841, I was on my death-bed, as regards my membership
with the Anglican Church, though at the time I became aware of it only
by degrees. I introduce what I have to say with this remark, by way of
accounting for the character of this remaining portion of my narrative.
A death-bed has scarcely a history; it is a tedious decline, with
seasons of rallying and seasons of falling back; and since the end is
foreseen, or what is called a matter of time, it has little interest for
the reader, especially if he has a kind heart. Moreover, it is a season
when doors are closed and curtains drawn, and when the sick man neither
cares nor is able to record the stages of his malady. I was in these
circumstances, except so far as I was not allowed to die in
peace,--except so far as friends, who had still a full right to come in
upon me, and the public world which had not, have given a sort of
history to those last four years. But in consequence, my narrative must
be in great measure documentary, as I cannot rely on my memory, except
for definite particulars, positive or negative. Letters of mine to
friends since dead have come into my hands; others have been kindly lent
me for the occasion; and I have some drafts of others, and some notes
which I made, though I have no strictly personal or continuous memoranda
to consult, and have unluckily mislaid some valuable papers.

And first as to my position in the view of duty; it was this:--1. I had
given up my place in the Movement in my letter to the Bishop of Oxford
in the spring of 1841; but 2. I could not give up my duties towards the
many and various minds who had more or less been brought into it by me;
3. I expected or intended gradually to fall back into Lay Communion; 4.
I never contemplated leaving the Church of England; 5. I could not hold
office in its service, if I were not allowed to hold the Catholic sense
of the Articles; 6. I could not go to Rome, while she suffered honours
to be paid to the Blessed Virgin and the Saints which I thought in my
conscience to be incompatible with the Supreme, Incommunicable Glory of
the One Infinite and Eternal; 7. I desired a union with Rome under
conditions, Church with Church; 8. I called Littlemore my Torres Vedras,
and thought that some day we might advance again within the Anglican
Church, as we had been forced to retire; 9. I kept back all persons who
were disposed to go to Rome with all my might.

And I kept them back for three or four reasons; 1. because what I could
not in conscience do myself, I could not suffer them to do; 2. because I
thought that in various cases they were acting under excitement; 3.
because I had duties to my Bishop and to the Anglican Church; and 4, in
some cases, because I had received from their Anglican parents or
superiors direct charge of them.

This was my view of my duty from the end of 1841, to my resignation of
St. Mary's in the autumn of 1843. And now I shall relate my view, during
that time, of the state of the controversy between the Churches.

       *       *       *       *       *

As soon as I saw the hitch in the Anglican argument, during my course of
reading in the summer of 1839, I began to look about, as I have said,
for some ground which might supply a controversial basis for my need.
The difficulty in question had affected my view both of Antiquity and
Catholicity; for, while the history of St. Leo showed me that the
deliberate and eventual consent of the great body of the Church ratified
a doctrinal decision as a part of revealed truth, it also showed that
the rule of Antiquity was not infringed, though a doctrine had not been
publicly recognized as so revealed, till centuries after the time of the
Apostles. Thus, whereas the Creeds tell us that the Church is One, Holy,
Catholic, and Apostolic, I could not prove that the Anglican communion
was an integral part of the One Church, on the ground of its teaching
being Apostolic or Catholic, without reasoning in favour of what are
commonly called the Roman corruptions; and I could not defend our
separation from Rome and her faith without using arguments prejudicial
to those great doctrines concerning our Lord, which are the very
foundation of the Christian religion. The Via Media was an impossible
idea; it was what I had called "standing on one leg;" and it was
necessary, if my old issue of the controversy was to be retained, to go
further either one way or the other.

Accordingly, I abandoned that old ground and took another. I
deliberately quitted the old Anglican ground as untenable; though I did
not do so all at once, but as I became more and more convinced of the
state of the case. The Jerusalem Bishopric was the ultimate condemnation
of the old theory of the Via Media:--if its establishment did nothing
else, at least it demolished the sacredness of diocesan rights. If
England could be in Palestine, Rome might be in England. But its bearing
upon the controversy, as I have shown in the foregoing chapter, was much
more serious than this technical ground. From that time the Anglican
Church was, in my mind, either not a normal portion of that One Church
to which the promises were made, or at least in an abnormal state; and
from that time I said boldly (as I did in my Protest, and as indeed I
had even intimated in my Letter to the Bishop of Oxford), that the
Church in which I found myself had no claim on me, except on condition
of its being a portion of the One Catholic Communion, and that that
condition must ever be borne in mind as a practical matter, and had to
be distinctly proved. All this is not inconsistent with my saying above
that, at this time, I had no thought of leaving the Church of England;
because I felt some of my old objections against Rome as strongly as
ever. I had no right, I had no leave, to act against my conscience. That
was a higher rule than any argument about the Notes of the Church.

Under these circumstances I turned for protection to the Note of
Sanctity, with a view of showing that we had at least one of the
necessary Notes, as fully as the Church of Rome; or, at least, without
entering into comparisons, that we had it in such a sufficient sense as
to reconcile us to our position, and to supply full evidence, and a
clear direction, on the point of practical duty. We had the Note of
Life,--not any sort of life, not such only as can come of nature, but a
supernatural Christian life, which could only come directly from above.
Thus, in my Article in the British Critic, to which I have so often
referred, in January, 1840 (before the time of Tract 90), I said of the
Anglican Church that "she has the note of possession, the note of
freedom from party titles, the note of life,--a tough life and a
vigorous; she has ancient descent, unbroken continuance, agreement in
doctrine with the Ancient Church." Presently I go on to speak of
sanctity: "Much as Roman Catholics may denounce us at present as
schismatical, they could not resist us if the Anglican communion had but
that one note of the Church upon it,--sanctity. The Church of the day
[4th century] could not resist Meletius; his enemies were fairly
overcome by him, by his meekness and holiness, which melted the most
jealous of them." And I continue, "We are almost content to say to
Romanists, account us not yet as a branch of the Catholic Church, though
we be a branch, till we are like a branch, provided that when we do
become like a branch, then you consent to acknowledge us," &c. And so I
was led on in the Article to that sharp attack on English Catholics, for
their shortcomings as regards this Note, a good portion of which I have
already quoted in another place. It is there that I speak of the great
scandal which I took at their political, social, and controversial
bearing; and this was a second reason why I fell back upon the Note of
Sanctity, because it took me away from the necessity of making any
attack upon the doctrines of the Roman Church, nay, from the
consideration of her popular beliefs, and brought me upon a ground on
which I felt I could not make a mistake; for what is a higher guide for
us in speculation and in practice, than that conscience of right and
wrong, of truth and falsehood, those sentiments of what is decorous,
consistent, and noble, which our Creator has made a part of our original
nature? Therefore I felt I could not be wrong in attacking what I
fancied was a fact,--the unscrupulousness, the deceit, and the
intriguing spirit of the agents and representatives of Rome.

This reference to Holiness as the true test of a Church was steadily
kept in view in what I wrote in connexion with Tract 90. I say in its
Introduction, "The writer can never be party to forcing the opinions or
projects of one school upon another; religious changes should be the act
of the whole body. No good can come of a change which is not a
development of feelings springing up freely and calmly within the bosom
of the whole body itself; every change in religion" must be "attended by
deep repentance; changes" must be "nurtured in mutual love; we cannot
agree without a supernatural influence;" we must come "together to God
to do for us what we cannot do for ourselves." In my Letter to the
Bishop I said, "I have set myself against suggestions for considering
the differences between ourselves and the foreign Churches with a view
to their adjustment." (I meant in the way of negotiation, conference,
agitation, or the like.) "Our business is with ourselves,--to make
ourselves more holy, more self-denying, more primitive, more worthy of
our high calling. To be anxious for a composition of differences is to
begin at the end. Political reconciliations are but outward and hollow,
and fallacious. And till Roman Catholics renounce political efforts, and
manifest in their public measures the light of holiness and truth,
perpetual war is our only prospect."

According to this theory, a religious body is part of the One Catholic
and Apostolic Church, if it has the succession and the creed of the
Apostles, with the note of holiness of life; and there is much in such a
view to approve itself to the direct common sense and practical habits
of an Englishman. However, with the events consequent upon Tract 90, I
sunk my theory to a lower level. For what could be said in apology, when
the Bishops and the people of my Church, not only did not suffer, but
actually rejected primitive Catholic doctrine, and tried to eject from
their communion all who held it? after the Bishops' charges? after the
Jerusalem "abomination[8]?" Well, this could be said; still we were not
nothing: we could not be as if we never had been a Church; we were
"Samaria." This then was that lower level on which I placed myself, and
all who felt with me, at the end of 1841.

[8] Matt. xxiv. 15.

To bring out this view was the purpose of Four Sermons preached at St.
Mary's in December of that year. Hitherto I had not introduced the
exciting topics of the day into the Pulpit[9]; on this occasion I did. I
did so, for the moment was urgent; there was great unsettlement of mind
among us, in consequence of those same events which had unsettled me.
One special anxiety, very obvious, which was coming on me now, was, that
what was "one man's meat was another man's poison." I had said even of
Tract 90, "It was addressed to one set of persons, and has been used and
commented on by another;" still more was it true now, that whatever I
wrote for the service of those whom I knew to be in trouble of mind,
would become on the one hand matter of suspicion and slander in the
mouths of my opponents, and of distress and surprise to those on the
other hand, who had no difficulties of faith at all. Accordingly, when I
published these Four Sermons at the end of 1843, I introduced them with
a recommendation that none should read them who did not need them. But
in truth the virtual condemnation of Tract 90, after that the whole
difficulty seemed to have been weathered, was an enormous disappointment
and trial. My Protest also against the Jerusalem Bishopric was an
unavoidable cause of excitement in the case of many; but it calmed them
too, for the very fact of a Protest was a relief to their impatience.
And so, in like manner, as regards the Four Sermons, of which I speak,
though they acknowledged freely the great scandal which was involved in
the recent episcopal doings, yet at the same time they might be said to
bestow upon the multiplied disorders and shortcomings of the Anglican
Church a sort of place in the Revealed Dispensation, and an intellectual
position in the controversy, and the dignity of a great principle, for
unsettled minds to take and use,--a principle which might teach them to
recognize their own consistency, and to be reconciled to themselves, and
which might absorb and dry up a multitude of their grudgings,
discontents, misgivings, and questionings, and lead the way to humble,
thankful, and tranquil thoughts;--and this was the effect which
certainly it produced on myself.

[9] Vide Note C. _Sermon on Wisdom and Innocence._

The point of these Sermons is, that, in spite of the rigid character of
the Jewish law, the formal and literal force of its precepts, and the
manifest schism, and worse than schism, of the Ten Tribes, yet in fact
they were still recognized as a people by the Divine Mercy; that the
great prophets Elias and Eliseus were sent to them; and not only so, but
were sent to preach to them and reclaim them, without any intimation
that they must be reconciled to the line of David and the Aaronic
priesthood, or go up to Jerusalem to worship. They were not in the
Church, yet they had the means of grace and the hope of acceptance with
their Maker. The application of all this to the Anglican Church was
immediate;--whether, under the circumstances, a man could assume or
exercise ministerial functions, or not, might not clearly appear (though
it must be remembered that England had the Apostolic Priesthood, whereas
Israel had no priesthood at all), but so far was clear, that there was
no call at all for an Anglican to leave his Church for Rome, though he
did not believe his own to be part of the One Church:--and for this
reason, because it was a fact that the kingdom of Israel was cut off
from the Temple; and yet its subjects, neither in a mass, nor as
individuals, neither the multitudes on Mount Carmel, nor the Shunammite
and her household, had any command given them, though miracles were
displayed before them, to break off from their own people, and to submit
themselves to Judah[10].

[10] As I am not writing controversially, I will only here remark upon
this argument, that there is a great difference between a command, which
presupposes physical, material, and political conditions, and one which
is moral. To go to Jerusalem was a matter of the body, not of the soul.

It is plain, that a theory such as this,--whether the marks of a divine
presence and life in the Anglican Church were sufficient to prove that
she was actually within the covenant, or only sufficient to prove that
she was at least enjoying extraordinary and uncovenanted mercies,--not
only lowered her level in a religious point of view, but weakened her
controversial basis. Its very novelty made it suspicious; and there was
no guarantee that the process of subsidence might not continue, and that
it might not end in a submersion. Indeed, to many minds, to say that
England was wrong was even to say that Rome was right; and no ethical or
casuistic reasoning whatever could overcome in their case the argument
from prescription and authority. To this objection, as made to my new
teaching, I could only answer that I did not make my circumstances. I
fully acknowledged the force and effectiveness of the genuine Anglican
theory, and that it was all but proof against the disputants of Rome;
but still like Achilles, it had a vulnerable point, and that St. Leo had
found it out for me, and that I could not help it;--that, were it not
for matter of fact, the theory would be great indeed; it would be
irresistible, if it were only true. When I became a Catholic, the Editor
of the Christian Observer, Mr. Wilkes, who had in former days accused
me, to my indignation, of tending towards Rome, wrote to me to ask,
which of the two was now right, he or I? I answered him in a letter,
part of which I here insert, as it will serve as a sort of leave-taking
of the great theory, which is so specious to look upon, so difficult to
prove, and so hopeless to work.

"Nov. 8, 1845. I do not think, at all more than I did, that the Anglican
principles which I advocated at the date you mention, lead men to the
Church of Rome. If I must specify what I mean by 'Anglican principles,'
I should say, e.g. taking _Antiquity_, not the _existing Church_, as the
oracle of truth; and holding that the _Apostolical Succession_ is a
sufficient guarantee of Sacramental Grace, _without union with the
Christian Church throughout the world_. I think these still the firmest,
strongest ground against Rome--that is, _if they can be held_" [as
truths or facts.] "They _have_ been held by many, and are far more
difficult to refute in the Roman controversy, than those of any other
religious body.

"For myself, I found _I could not_ hold them. I left them. From the time
I began to suspect their unsoundness, I ceased to put them forward. When
I was fairly sure of their unsoundness, I gave up my Living. When I was
fully confident that the Church of Rome was the only true Church, I
joined her.

"I have felt all along that Bp. Bull's theology was the only theology on
which the English Church could stand. I have felt, that opposition to
the Church of Rome was _part_ of that theology; and that he who could
not protest against the Church of Rome was no true divine in the English
Church. I have never said, nor attempted to say, that any one in office
in the English Church, whether Bishop or incumbent, could be otherwise
than in hostility to the Church of Rome."

       *       *       *       *       *

The _Via Media_ then disappeared for ever, and a Theory, made expressly
for the occasion, took its place. I was pleased with my new view. I
wrote to an intimate friend, Samuel F. Wood, Dec. 13, 1841: "I think you
will give me the credit, Carissime, of not undervaluing the strength of
the feelings which draw one [to Rome], and yet I am (I trust) quite
clear about my duty to remain where I am; indeed, much clearer than I
was some time since. If it is not presumptuous to say, I have ... a much
more definite view of the promised inward Presence of Christ with us in
the Sacraments now that the outward notes of it are being removed. And I
am content to be with Moses in the desert, or with Elijah excommunicated
from the Temple. I say this, putting things at the strongest."

However, my friends of the moderate Apostolical party, who were my
friends for the very reason of my having been so moderate and Anglican
myself in general tone in times past, who had stood up for Tract 90
partly from faith in me, and certainly from generous and kind feeling,
and had thereby shared an obloquy which was none of theirs, were
naturally surprised and offended at a line of argument, novel, and, as
it appeared to them, wanton, which threw the whole controversy into
confusion, stultified my former principles, and substituted, as they
would consider, a sort of methodistic self-contemplation, especially
abhorrent both to my nature and to my past professions, for the plain
and honest tokens, as they were commonly received, of a divine mission
in the Anglican Church. They could not tell whither I was going; and
were still further annoyed when I persisted in viewing the condemnation
of Tract 90 by the public and the Bishops as so grave a matter, and when
I threw about what they considered mysterious hints of "eventualities,"
and would not simply say, "An Anglican I was born, and an Anglican I
will die." One of my familiar friends, Mr. Church, who was in the
country at Christmas, 1841-2, reported to me the feeling that prevailed
about me; and how I felt towards it will appear in the following letter
of mine, written in answer:--

"Oriel, Dec. 24, 1841. Carissime, you cannot tell how sad your account
of Moberly has made me. His view of the sinfulness of the decrees of
Trent is as much against union of Churches as against individual
conversions. To tell the truth, I never have examined those decrees with
this object, and have no view; but that is very different from having a
deliberate view against them. Could not he say _which_ they are? I
suppose Transubstantiation is one. Charles Marriott, though of course he
would not like to have it repeated[11], does not scruple at that. I have
not my mind clear. Moberly must recollect that Palmer [of Worcester]
thinks they all bear a Catholic interpretation. For myself, this only I
see, that there is indefinitely more in the Fathers against our own
state of alienation from Christendom than against the Tridentine

"The only thing I can think of," [that I can have said of a startling
character,] "is this, that there were persons who, if our Church
committed herself to heresy, _sooner_ than think that there was no
Church any where, would believe the Roman to be the Church; and
therefore would on faith accept what they could not otherwise acquiesce
in. I suppose, it would be no relief to him to insist upon the
circumstance that there is no immediate danger. Individuals can never be
answered for of course; but I should think lightly of that man, who, for
some act of the Bishops, should all at once leave the Church. Now,
considering how the Clergy really are improving, considering that this
row is even making them read the Tracts, is it not possible we may all
be in a better state of mind seven years hence to consider these
matters? and may we not leave them meanwhile to the will of Providence?
I _cannot_ believe this work has been of man; God has a right to His own
work, to do what He will with it. May we not try to leave it in His
hands, and be content?

"If you learn any thing about Barter, which leads you to think that I
can relieve him by a letter, let me know. The truth is this,--our good
friends do not read the Fathers; they assent to us from the common sense
of the case: then, when the Fathers, and we, say _more_ than their
common sense, they are dreadfully shocked.

"The Bishop of London has rejected a man, 1. For holding _any_ Sacrifice
in the Eucharist. 2. The Real Presence. 3. That there is a grace in

"Are we quite sure that the Bishops will not be drawing up some
stringent declarations of faith? Is this what Moberly fears? Would the
Bishop of Oxford accept them? If so, I should be driven into the Refuge
for the Destitute [Littlemore]. But I promise Moberly, I would do my
utmost to catch all dangerous persons and clap them into confinement

[11] As things stand now, I do not think he would have objected to his
opinion being generally known.

[12] I cannot prove this at this distance of time; but I do not think it
wrong to introduce here the passage containing it, as I am imputing to
the Bishop nothing which the world would think disgraceful, but, on the
contrary, what a large religious body would approve.

Christmas Bay, 1841. "I have been dreaming of Moberly all night. Should
not he and the like see, that it is unwise, unfair, and impatient to ask
others, What will you do under circumstances, which have not, which may
never come? Why bring fear, suspicion, and disunion into the camp about
things which are merely _in posse_? Natural, and exceedingly kind as
Barter's and another friend's letters were, I think they have done great
harm. I speak most sincerely when I say, that there are things which I
neither contemplate, nor wish to contemplate; but, when I am asked about
them ten times, at length I begin to contemplate them.

"He surely does not mean to say, that _nothing_ could separate a man
from the English Church, e.g. its avowing Socinianism; its holding the
Holy Eucharist in a Socinian sense. Yet, he would say, it was not
_right_ to contemplate such things.

"Again, our case is [diverging] from that of Ken's. To say nothing of
the last miserable century, which has given us to _start_ from a much
lower level and with much less to _spare_ than a Churchman in the 17th
century, questions of _doctrine_ are now coming in; with him, it was a
question of discipline.

"If such dreadful events were realized, I cannot help thinking we should
all be vastly more agreed than we think now. Indeed, is it possible
(humanly speaking) that those, who have so much the same heart, should
widely differ? But let this be considered, as to alternatives. _What_
communion could we join? Could the Scotch or American sanction the
presence of its Bishops and congregations in England, without incurring
the imputation of schism, unless indeed (and is that likely?) they
denounced the English as heretical?

"Is not this a time of strange providences? is it not our safest course,
without looking to consequences, to do simply _what we think right_ day
by day? shall we not be sure to go wrong, if we attempt to trace by
anticipation the course of divine Providence?

"Has not all our misery, as a Church, arisen from people being afraid to
look difficulties in the face? They have palliated acts, when they
should have denounced them. There is that good fellow, Worcester Palmer,
can whitewash the Ecclesiastical Commission and the Jerusalem Bishopric.
And what is the consequence? that our Church has, through centuries,
ever been sinking lower and lower, till good part of its pretensions and
professions is a mere sham, though it be a duty to make the best of what
we have received. Yet, though bound to make the best of other men's
shams, let us not incur any of our own. The truest friends of our Church
are they, who say boldly when her rulers are going wrong, and the
consequences; and (to speak catachrestically) _they_ are most likely to
die in the Church, who are, under these black circumstances, most
prepared to leave it.

"And I will add, that, considering the traces of God's grace which
surround us, I am very sanguine, or rather confident, (if it is right so
to speak,) that our prayers and our alms will come up as a memorial
before God, and that all this miserable confusion tends to good.

"Let us not then be anxious, and anticipate differences in prospect,
when we agree in the present.

"P.S. I think when friends" [i.e. the extreme party] "get over their
first unsettlement of mind and consequent vague apprehensions, which the
new attitude of the Bishops, and our feelings upon it, have brought
about, they will get contented and satisfied. They will see that they
exaggerated things.... Of course it would have been wrong to anticipate
what one's feelings would be under such a painful contingency as the
Bishops' charging as they have done,--so it seems to me nobody's fault.
Nor is it wonderful that others" [moderate men] "are startled" [i.e. at
my Protest, &c. &c.]; "yet they should recollect that the more implicit
the reverence one pays to a Bishop, the more keen will be one's
perception of heresy in him. The cord is binding and compelling, till it

"Men of reflection would have seen this, if they had looked that way.
Last spring, a very high churchman talked to me of resisting my Bishop,
of asking him for the Canons under which he acted, and so forth; but
those, who have cultivated a loyal feeling towards their superiors, are
the most loving servants, or the most zealous protestors. If others
became so too, if the clergy of Chester denounced the heresy of their
diocesan, they would be doing their duty, and relieving themselves of
the share which they otherwise have in any possible defection of their

"St. Stephen's [Day, December 26]. How I fidget! I now fear that the
note I wrote yesterday only makes matters worse by _disclosing_ too
much. This is always my great difficulty.

"In the present state of excitement on both sides, I think of leaving
out altogether my reassertion of No. 90 in my Preface to Volume 6 [of
Parochial Sermons], and merely saying, 'As many false reports are at
this time in circulation about him, he hopes his well-wishers will take
this Volume as an indication of his real thoughts and feelings: those
who are not, he leaves in God's hand to bring them to a better mind in
His own time.' What do you say to the logic, sentiment, and propriety of

An old friend, at a distance from Oxford, Archdeacon Robert I.
Wilberforce, must have said something to me at this time, I do not know
what, which challenged a frank reply; for I disclosed to him, I do not
know in what words, my frightful suspicion, hitherto only known to two
persons, viz. his brother Henry and Mr. Frederic Rogers,[13] that, as
regards my Anglicanism, perhaps I might break down in the event,--that
perhaps we were both out of the Church. I think I recollect expressing
my difficulty, as derived from the Arian and Monophysite history, in a
form in which it would be most intelligible to him, as being in fact an
admission of Bishop Bull's; viz. that in the controversies of the early
centuries the Roman Church was ever on the right side, which was of
course a _primâ facie_ argument in favour of Rome and against
Anglicanism now. He answered me thus, under date of Jan. 29, 1842: "I
don't think that I ever was so shocked by any communication, which was
ever made to me, as by your letter of this morning. It has quite
unnerved me.... I cannot but write to you, though I am at a loss where
to begin.... I know of no act by which we have dissevered ourselves from
the communion of the Church Universal.... The more I study Scripture,
the more am I impressed with the resemblance between the Romish
principle in the Church and the Babylon of St. John.... I am ready to
grieve that I ever directed my thoughts to theology, if it is indeed so
uncertain, as your doubts seem to indicate."

[13] Now Lord Blachford.

While my old and true friends were thus in trouble about me, I suppose
they felt not only anxiety but pain, to see that I was gradually
surrendering myself to the influence of others, who had not their own
claims upon me, younger men, and of a cast of mind in no small degree
uncongenial to my own. A new school of thought was rising, as is usual
in doctrinal inquiries, and was sweeping the original party of the
Movement aside, and was taking its place. The most prominent person in
it, was a man of elegant genius, of classical mind, of rare talent in
literary composition:--Mr. Oakeley. He was not far from my own age; I
had long known him, though of late years he had not been in residence at
Oxford; and quite lately, he has been taking several signal occasions of
renewing that kindness, which he ever showed towards me when we were
both in the Anglican Church. His tone of mind was not unlike that which
gave a character to the early Movement; he was almost a typical Oxford
man, and, as far as I recollect, both in political and ecclesiastical
views, would have been of one spirit with the Oriel party of 1826-1833.
But he had entered late into the Movement; he did not know its first
years; and, beginning with a new start, he was naturally thrown together
with that body of eager, acute, resolute minds who had begun their
Catholic life about the same time as he, who knew nothing about the _Via
Media_, but had heard much about Rome. This new party rapidly formed and
increased, in and out of Oxford, and, as it so happened,
contemporaneously with that very summer, when I received so serious a
blow to my ecclesiastical views from the study of the Monophysite
controversy. These men cut into the original Movement at an angle, fell
across its line of thought, and then set about turning that line in its
own direction. They were most of them keenly religious men, with a true
concern for their souls as the first matter of all, with a great zeal
for me, but giving little certainty at the time as to which way they
would ultimately turn. Some in the event have remained firm to
Anglicanism, some have become Catholics, and some have found a refuge in
Liberalism. Nothing was clearer concerning them, than that they needed
to be kept in order; and on me who had had so much to do with the making
of them, that duty was as clearly incumbent; and it is equally clear,
from what I have already said, that I was just the person, above all
others, who could not undertake it. There are no friends like old
friends; but of those old friends, few could help me, few could
understand me, many were annoyed with me, some were angry, because I was
breaking up a compact party, and some, as a matter of conscience, could
not listen to me. When I looked round for those whom I might consult in
my difficulties, I found the very hypothesis of those difficulties
acting as a bar to their giving me their advice. Then I said, bitterly,
"You are throwing me on others, whether I will or no." Yet still I had
good and true friends around me of the old sort, in and out of Oxford
too, who were a great help to me. But on the other hand, though I
neither was so fond (with a few exceptions) of the persons, nor of the
methods of thought, which belonged to this new school, as of the old
set, though I could not trust in their firmness of purpose, for, like a
swarm of flies, they might come and go, and at length be divided and
dissipated, yet I had an intense sympathy in their object and in the
direction in which their path lay, in spite of my old friends, in spite
of my old life-long prejudices. In spite of my ingrained fears of Rome,
and the decision of my reason and conscience against her usages, in
spite of my affection for Oxford and Oriel, yet I had a secret longing
love of Rome the Mother of English Christianity, and I had a true
devotion to the Blessed Virgin, in whose College I lived, whose Altar I
served, and whose Immaculate Purity I had in one of my earliest printed
Sermons made much of. And it was the consciousness of this bias in
myself, if it is so to be called, which made me preach so earnestly
against the danger of being swayed in religious inquiry by our sympathy
rather than by our reason. And moreover, the members of this new school
looked up to me, as I have said, and did me true kindnesses, and really
loved me, and stood by me in trouble, when others went away, and for all
this I was grateful; nay, many of them were in trouble themselves, and
in the same boat with me, and that was a further cause of sympathy
between us; and hence it was, when the new school came on in force, and
into collision with the old, I had not the heart, any more than the
power, to repel them; I was in great perplexity, and hardly knew where I
stood; I took their part; and, when I wanted to be in peace and silence,
I had to speak out, and I incurred the charge of weakness from some men,
and of mysteriousness, shuffling, and underhand dealing from the

       *       *       *       *       *

Now I will say here frankly, that this sort of charge is a matter which
I cannot properly meet, because I cannot duly realize it. I have never
had any suspicion of my own honesty; and, when men say that I was
dishonest, I cannot grasp the accusation as a distinct conception, such
as it is possible to encounter. If a man said to me, "On such a day and
before such persons you said a thing was white, when it was black," I
understand what is meant well enough, and I can set myself to prove an
_alibi_ or to explain the mistake; or if a man said to me, "You tried to
gain me over to your party, intending to take me with you to Rome, but
you did not succeed," I can give him the lie, and lay down an assertion
of my own as firm and as exact as his, that not from the time that I was
first unsettled, did I ever attempt to gain any one over to myself or to
my Romanizing opinions, and that it is only his own coxcombical fancy
which has bred such a thought in him: but my imagination is at a loss in
presence of those vague charges, which have commonly been brought
against me, charges, which are made up of impressions, and
understandings, and inferences, and hearsay, and surmises. Accordingly,
I shall not make the attempt, for, in doing so, I should be dealing
blows in the air; what I shall attempt is to state what I know of myself
and what I recollect, and leave to others its application.

While I had confidence in the _Via Media_, and thought that nothing
could overset it, I did not mind laying down large principles, which I
saw would go further than was commonly perceived. I considered that to
make the _Via Media_ concrete and substantive, it must be much more than
it was in outline; that the Anglican Church must have a ceremonial, a
ritual, and a fulness of doctrine and devotion, which it had not at
present, if it were to compete with the Roman Church with any prospect
of success. Such additions would not remove it from its proper basis,
but would merely strengthen and beautify it: such, for instance, would
be confraternities, particular devotions, reverence for the Blessed
Virgin, prayers for the dead, beautiful churches, munificent offerings
to them and in them, monastic houses, and many other observances and
institutions, which I used to say belonged to us as much as to Rome,
though Rome had appropriated them and boasted of them, by reason of our
having let them slip from us. The principle, on which all this turned,
is brought out in one of the Letters I published on occasion of Tract
90. "The age is moving," I said, "towards something; and most unhappily
the one religious communion among us, which has of late years been
practically in possession of this something, is the Church of Rome. She
alone, amid all the errors and evils of her practical system, has given
free scope to the feelings of awe, mystery, tenderness, reverence,
devotedness, and other feelings which may be especially called Catholic.
The question then is, whether we shall give them up to the Roman Church
or claim them for ourselves.... But if we do give them up, we must give
up the men who cherish them. We must consent either to give up the men,
or to admit their principles." With these feelings I frankly admit,
that, while I was working simply for the sake of the Anglican Church, I
did not at all mind, though I found myself laying down principles in its
defence, which went beyond that particular kind of defence which
high-and-dry men thought perfection, and even though I ended in framing
a kind of defence, which they might call a revolution, while I thought
it a restoration. Thus, for illustration, I might discourse upon the
"Communion of Saints" in such a manner, (though I do not recollect doing
so,) as might lead the way towards devotion to the Blessed Virgin and
the Saints on the one hand, and towards prayers for the dead on the
other. In a memorandum of the year 1844 or 1845, I thus speak on this
subject: "If the Church be not defended on establishment grounds, it
must be upon principles, which go far beyond their immediate object.
Sometimes I saw these further results, sometimes not. Though I saw them,
I sometimes did not say that I saw them:--so long as I thought they were
inconsistent, _not_ with our Church, but only with the existing
opinions, I was not unwilling to insinuate truths into our Church, which
I thought had a right to be there."

To so much I confess; but I do not confess, I simply deny that I ever
said any thing which secretly bore against the Church of England,
knowing it myself, in order that others might unwarily accept it. It was
indeed one of my great difficulties and causes of reserve, as time went
on, that I at length recognized in principles which I had honestly
preached as if Anglican, conclusions favourable to the cause of Rome. Of
course I did not like to confess this; and, when interrogated, was in
consequence in perplexity. The prime instance of this was the appeal to
Antiquity; St. Leo had overset, in my own judgment, its force as the
special argument for Anglicanism; yet I was committed to Antiquity,
together with the whole Anglican school; what then was I to say, when
acute minds urged this or that application of it against the _Via
Media_? it was impossible that, in such circumstances, any answer could
be given which was not unsatisfactory, or any behaviour adopted which
was not mysterious. Again, sometimes in what I wrote I went just as far
as I saw, and could as little say more, as I could see what is below the
horizon; and therefore, when asked as to the consequences of what I had
said, I had no answer to give. Again, sometimes when I was asked,
whether certain conclusions did not follow from a certain principle, I
might not be able to tell at the moment, especially if the matter were
complicated; and for this reason, if for no other, because there is
great difference between a conclusion in the abstract and a conclusion
in the concrete, and because a conclusion may be modified in fact by a
conclusion from some opposite principle. Or it might so happen that my
head got simply confused, by the very strength of the logic which was
administered to me, and thus I gave my sanction to conclusions which
really were not mine; and when the report of those conclusions came
round to me through others, I had to unsay them. And then again, perhaps
I did not like to see men scared or scandalized by unfeeling logical
inferences, which would not have troubled them to the day of their
death, had they not been forced to recognize them. And then I felt
altogether the force of the maxim of St. Ambrose, "Non in dialecticâ
complacuit Deo salvum facere populum suum;"--I had a great dislike of
paper logic. For myself, it was not logic that carried me on; as well
might one say that the quicksilver in the barometer changes the weather.
It is the concrete being that reasons; pass a number of years, and I
find my mind in a new place; how? the whole man moves; paper logic is
but the record of it. All the logic in the world would not have made me
move faster towards Rome than I did; as well might you say that I have
arrived at the end of my journey, because I see the village church
before me, as venture to assert that the miles, over which my soul had
to pass before it got to Rome, could be annihilated, even though I had
been in possession of some far clearer view than I then had, that Rome
was my ultimate destination. Great acts take time. At least this is what
I felt in my own case; and therefore to come to me with methods of logic
had in it the nature of a provocation, and, though I do not think I ever
showed it, made me somewhat indifferent how I met them, and perhaps led
me, as a means of relieving my impatience, to be mysterious or
irrelevant, or to give in because I could not meet them to my
satisfaction. And a greater trouble still than these logical mazes, was
the introduction of logic into every subject whatever, so far, that is,
as this was done. Before I was at Oriel, I recollect an acquaintance
saying to me that "the Oriel Common Room stank of Logic." One is not at
all pleased when poetry, or eloquence, or devotion, is considered as if
chiefly intended to feed syllogisms. Now, in saying all this, I am
saying nothing against the deep piety and earnestness which were
characteristics of this second phase of the Movement, in which I had
taken so prominent a part. What I have been observing is, that this
phase had a tendency to bewilder and to upset me; and, that, instead of
saying so, as I ought to have done, perhaps from a sort of laziness I
gave answers at random, which have led to my appearing close or

I have turned up two letters of this period, which in a measure
illustrate what I have been saying. The first was written to the Bishop
of Oxford on occasion of Tract 90:

"March 20, 1841. No one can enter into my situation but myself. I see a
great many minds working in various directions and a variety of
principles with multiplied bearings; I act for the best. I sincerely
think that matters would not have gone better for the Church, had I
never written. And if I write I have a choice of difficulties. It is
easy for those who do not enter into those difficulties to say, 'He
ought to say this and not say that,' but things are wonderfully linked
together, and I cannot, or rather I would not be dishonest. When persons
too interrogate me, I am obliged in many cases to give an opinion, or I
seem to be underhand. Keeping silence looks like artifice. And I do not
like people to consult or respect me, from thinking differently of my
opinions from what I know them to be. And again (to use the proverb)
what is one man's food is another man's poison. All these things make my
situation very difficult. But that collision must at some time ensue
between members of the Church of opposite sentiments, I have long been
aware. The time and mode has been in the hand of Providence; I do not
mean to exclude my own great imperfections in bringing it about; yet I
still feel obliged to think the Tract necessary."

The second is taken from the notes of a letter which I sent to Dr. Pusey
in the next year:

"October 16, 1842. As to my being entirely with Ward, I do not know the
limits of my own opinions. If Ward says that this or that is a
development from what I have said, I cannot say Yes or No. It is
plausible, it _may_ be true. Of course the fact that the Roman Church
_has_ so developed and maintained, adds great weight to the antecedent
plausibility. I cannot assert that it is not true; but I cannot, with
that keen perception which some people have, appropriate it. It is a
nuisance to me to be _forced_ beyond what I can fairly accept."

       *       *       *       *       *

There was another source of the perplexity with which at this time I was
encompassed, and of the reserve and mysteriousness, of which that
perplexity gained for me the credit. After Tract 90 the Protestant world
would not let me alone; they pursued me in the public journals to
Littlemore. Reports of all kinds were circulated about me. "Imprimis,
why did I go up to Littlemore at all? For no good purpose certainly; I
dared not tell why." Why, to be sure, it was hard that I should be
obliged to say to the Editors of newspapers that I went up there to say
my prayers; it was hard to have to tell the world in confidence, that I
had a certain doubt about the Anglican system, and could not at that
moment resolve it, or say what would come of it; it was hard to have to
confess that I had thought of giving up my Living a year or two before,
and that this was a first step to it. It was hard to have to plead,
that, for what I knew, my doubts would vanish, if the newspapers would
be so good as to give me time and let me alone. Who would ever dream of
making the world his confidant? yet I was considered insidious, sly,
dishonest, if I would not open my heart to the tender mercies of the
world. But they persisted: "What was I doing at Littlemore?" Doing
there! have I not retreated from you? have I not given up my position
and my place? am I alone, of Englishmen, not to have the privilege to go
where I will, no questions asked? am I alone to be followed about by
jealous prying eyes, which take note whether I go in at a back door or
at the front, and who the men are who happen to call on me in the
afternoon? Cowards! if I advanced one step, you would run away; it is
not you that I fear: "Di me terrent, et Jupiter hostis." It is because
the Bishops still go on charging against me, though I have quite given
up: it is that secret misgiving of heart which tells me that they do
well, for I have neither lot nor part with them: this it is which weighs
me down. I cannot walk into or out of my house, but curious eyes are
upon me. Why will you not let me die in peace? Wounded brutes creep into
some hole to die in, and no one grudges it them. Let me alone, I shall
not trouble you long. This was the keen feeling which pierced me, and, I
think, these are the very words in which I expressed it to myself. I
asked, in the words of a great motto, "Ubi lapsus? quid feci?" One day
when I entered my house, I found a flight of Under-graduates inside.
Heads of Houses, as mounted patrols, walked their horses round those
poor cottages. Doctors of Divinity dived into the hidden recesses of
that private tenement uninvited, and drew domestic conclusions from what
they saw there. I had thought that an Englishman's house was his castle;
but the newspapers thought otherwise, and at last the matter came before
my good Bishop. I insert his letter, and a portion of my reply to him:--

"April 12, 1842. So many of the charges against yourself and your
friends which I have seen in the public journals have been, within my
own knowledge, false and calumnious, that I am not apt to pay much
attention, to what is asserted with respect to you in the newspapers.

"In" [a newspaper] "however, of April 9, there appears a paragraph in
which it is asserted, as a matter of notoriety, that a 'so-called
Anglo-Catholic Monastery is in process of erection at Littlemore, and
that the cells of dormitories, the chapel, the refectory, the cloisters
all may be seen advancing to perfection, under the eye of a Parish
Priest of the Diocese of Oxford.'

"Now, as I have understood that you really are possessed of some
tenements at Littlemore,--as it is generally believed that they are
destined for the purposes of study and devotion,--and as much suspicion
and jealousy are felt about the matter, I am anxious to afford you an
opportunity of making me an explanation on the subject.

"I know you too well not to be aware that you are the last man living to
attempt in my Diocese a revival of the Monastic orders (in any thing
approaching to the Romanist sense of the term) without previous
communication with me,--or indeed that you should take upon yourself to
originate any measure of importance without authority from the heads of
the Church,--and therefore I at once exonerate you from the accusation
brought against you by the newspaper I have quoted, but I feel it
nevertheless a duty to my Diocese and myself, as well as to you, to ask
you to put it in my power to contradict what, if uncontradicted, would
appear to imply a glaring invasion of all ecclesiastical discipline on
_your_ part, or of inexcusable neglect and indifference to my duties on

I wrote in answer as follows:--

"April 14, 1842. I am very much obliged by your Lordship's kindness in
allowing me to write to you on the subject of my house at Littlemore; at
the same time I feel it hard both on your Lordship and myself that the
restlessness of the public mind should oblige you to require an
explanation of me.

"It is now a whole year that I have been the subject of incessant
misrepresentation. A year since I submitted entirely to your Lordship's
authority; and, with the intention of following out the particular act
enjoined upon me, I not only stopped the series of Tracts, on which I
was engaged, but withdrew from all public discussion of Church matters
of the day, or what may be called ecclesiastical politics. I turned
myself at once to the preparation for the Press of the translations of
St. Athanasius to which I had long wished to devote myself, and I
intended and intend to employ myself in the like theological studies,
and in the concerns of my own parish and in practical works.

"With the same view of personal improvement I was led more seriously to
a design which had been long on my mind. For many years, at least
thirteen, I have wished to give myself to a life of greater religious
regularity than I have hitherto led; but it is very unpleasant to
confess such a wish even to my Bishop, because it seems arrogant, and
because it is committing me to a profession which may come to nothing.
For what have I done that I am to be called to account by the world for
my private actions, in a way in which no one else is called? Why may I
not have that liberty which all others are allowed? I am often accused
of being underhand and uncandid in respect to the intentions to which I
have been alluding: but no one likes his own good resolutions noised
about, both from mere common delicacy and from fear lest he should not
be able to fulfil them. I feel it very cruel, though the parties in
fault do not know what they are doing, that very sacred matters between
me and my conscience are made a matter of public talk. May I take a case
parallel though different? suppose a person in prospect of marriage;
would he like the subject discussed in newspapers, and parties,
circumstances, &c., &c., publicly demanded of him, at the penalty of
being accused of craft and duplicity?

"The resolution I speak of has been taken with reference to myself
alone, and has been contemplated quite independent of the co-operation
of any other human being, and without reference to success or failure
other than personal, and without regard to the blame or approbation of
man. And being a resolution of years, and one to which I feel God has
called me, and in which I am violating no rule of the Church any more
than if I married, I should have to answer for it, if I did not pursue
it, as a good Providence made openings for it. In pursuing it then I am
thinking of myself alone, not aiming at any ecclesiastical or external
effects. At the same time of course it would be a great comfort to me to
know that God had put it into the hearts of others to pursue their
personal edification in the same way, and unnatural not to wish to have
the benefit of their presence and encouragement, or not to think it a
great infringement on the rights of conscience if such personal and
private resolutions were interfered with. Your Lordship will allow me to
add my firm conviction that such religious resolutions are most
necessary for keeping a certain class of minds firm in their allegiance
to our Church; but still I can as truly say that my own reason for any
thing I have done has been a personal one, without which I should not
have entered upon it, and which I hope to pursue whether with or without
the sympathies of others pursuing a similar course....

"As to my intentions, I purpose to live there myself a good deal, as I
have a resident curate in Oxford. In doing this, I believe I am
consulting for the good of my parish, as my population at Littlemore is
at least equal to that of St. Mary's in Oxford, and the _whole_ of
Littlemore is double of it. It has been very much neglected; and in
providing a parsonage-house at Littlemore, as this will be, and will be
called, I conceive I am doing a very great benefit to my people. At the
same time it has appeared to me that a partial or temporary retirement
from St. Mary's Church might be expedient under the prevailing

"As to the quotation from the [newspaper], which I have not seen, your
Lordship will perceive from what I have said, that no 'monastery is in
process of erection;' there is no 'chapel;' no 'refectory', hardly a
dining-room or parlour. The 'cloisters' are my shed connecting the
cottages. I do not understand what 'cells of dormitories' means. Of
course I can repeat your Lordship's words that 'I am not attempting a
revival of the Monastic Orders, in any thing approaching to the Romanist
sense of the term,' or 'taking on myself to originate any measure of
importance without authority from the Heads of the Church.' I am
attempting nothing ecclesiastical, but something personal and private,
and which can only be made public, not private, by newspapers and
letter-writers, in which sense the most sacred and conscientious
resolves and acts may certainly be made the objects of an unmannerly and
unfeeling curiosity."

       *       *       *       *       *

One calumny there was which the Bishop did not believe, and of which of
course he had no idea of speaking. It was that I was actually in the
service of the enemy. I had forsooth been already received into the
Catholic Church, and was rearing at Littlemore a nest of Papists, who,
like me, were to take the Anglican oaths which they disbelieved, by
virtue of a dispensation from Rome, and thus in due time were to bring
over to that unprincipled Church great numbers of the Anglican Clergy
and Laity. Bishops gave their countenance to this imputation against me.
The case was simply this:--as I made Littlemore a place of retirement
for myself, so did I offer it to others. There were young men in Oxford,
whose testimonials for Orders had been refused by their Colleges; there
were young clergymen, who had found themselves unable from conscience to
go on with their duties, and had thrown up their parochial engagements.
Such men were already going straight to Rome, and I interposed; I
interposed for the reasons I have given in the beginning of this portion
of my narrative. I interposed from fidelity to my clerical engagements,
and from duty to my Bishop; and from the interest which I was bound to
take in them, and from belief that they were premature or excited. Their
friends besought me to quiet them, if I could. Some of them came to live
with me at Littlemore. They were laymen, or in the place of laymen. I
kept some of them back for several years from being received into the
Catholic Church. Even when I had given up my living, I was still bound
by my duty to their parents or friends, and I did not forget still to do
what I could for them. The immediate occasion of my resigning St.
Mary's, was the unexpected conversion of one of them. After that, I felt
it was impossible to keep my post there, for I had been unable to keep
my word with my Bishop.

The following letters refer, more or less, to these men, whether they
were actually with me at Littlemore or not:--

1. "March 6, 1842. Church doctrines are a powerful weapon; they were not
sent into the world for nothing. God's word does not return unto Him
void: If I have said, as I have, that the doctrines of the Tracts for
the Times would build up our Church and destroy parties, I meant, if
they were used, not if they were denounced. Else, they will be as
powerful against us, as they might be powerful for us.

"If people who have a liking for another, hear him called a Roman
Catholic; they will say, 'Then after all Romanism is no such bad thing.'
All these persons, who are making the cry, are fulfilling their own
prophecy. If all the world agree in telling a man, he has no business in
our Church, he will at length begin to think he has none. How easy is it
to persuade a man of any thing, when numbers affirm it! so great is the
force of imagination. Did every one who met you in the streets look hard
at you, you would think you were somehow in fault. I do not know any
thing so irritating, so unsettling, especially in the case of young
persons, as, when they are going on calmly and unconsciously, obeying
their Church and following its divines, (I am speaking from facts,) as
suddenly to their surprise to be conjured not to make a leap, of which
they have not a dream and from which they are far removed."

2. 1843 or 1844. "I did not explain to you sufficiently the state of
mind of those who were in danger. I only spoke of those who were
convinced that our Church was external to the Church Catholic, though
they felt it unsafe to trust their own private convictions; but there
are two other states of mind; 1. that of those who are unconsciously
near Rome, and whose _despair_ about our Church would at once develope
into a state of conscious approximation, or a _quasi_-resolution to go
over; 2. those who feel they can with a safe conscience remain with us
_while_ they are allowed to _testify_ in behalf of Catholicism, i.e. as
if by such acts they were putting our Church, or at least that portion
of it in which they were included, in the position of catechumens."

3. "June 20, 1843. I return the very pleasing letter you have permitted
me to read. What a sad thing it is, that it should be a plain duty to
restrain one's sympathies, and to keep them from boiling over; but I
suppose it is a matter of common prudence.

"Things are very serious here; but I should not like you to say so, as
it might do no good. The Authorities find, that, by the Statutes, they
have more than military power; and the general impression seems to be,
that they intend to exert it, and put down Catholicism at any risk. I
believe that by the Statutes, they can pretty nearly suspend a Preacher,
as _seditiosus_ or causing dissension, without assigning their grounds
in the particular case, nay, banish him, or imprison him. If so, all
holders of preferment in the University should make as quiet an _exit_
as they can. There is more exasperation on both sides at this moment, as
I am told, than ever there was."

4. "July 16, 1843. I assure you that I feel, with only too much
sympathy, what you say. You need not be told that the whole subject of
our position is a subject of anxiety to others beside yourself. It is no
good attempting to offer advice, when perhaps I might raise difficulties
instead of removing them. It seems to me quite a case, in which you
should, as far as may be, make up your mind for yourself. Come to
Littlemore by all means. We shall all rejoice in your company; and, if
quiet and retirement are able, as they very likely will be, to reconcile
you to things as they are, you shall have your fill of them. How
distressed poor Henry Wilberforce must be! Knowing how he values you, I
feel for him; but, alas! he has his own position, and every one else has
his own, and the misery is that no two of us have exactly the same.

"It is very kind of you to be so frank and open with me, as you are; but
this is a time which throws together persons who feel alike. May I
without taking a liberty sign myself, yours affectionately, &c."

5. "August 30, 1843. A. B. has suddenly conformed to the Church of Rome.
He was away for three weeks. I suppose I must say in my defence, that he
promised me distinctly to remain in our Church three years, before I
received him here."

6. "June 17, 1845. I am concerned to find you speak of me in a tone of
distrust. If you knew me ever so little, instead of hearing of me from
persons who do not know me at all, you would think differently of me,
whatever you thought of my opinions. Two years since, I got your son to
tell you my intention of resigning St. Mary's, before I made it public,
thinking you ought to know it. When you expressed some painful feeling
upon it, I told him I could not consent to his remaining here, painful
as it would be to me to part with him, without your written sanction.
And this you did me the favour to give.

"I believe you will find that it has been merely a delicacy on your
son's part, which has delayed his speaking to you about me for two
months past; a delicacy, lest he should say either too much or too
little about me. I have urged him several times to speak to you.

"Nothing can be done after your letter, but to recommend him to go to A.
B. (his home) at once. I am very sorry to part with him."

7. The following letter is addressed to Cardinal Wiseman, then Vicar
Apostolic, who accused me of coldness in my conduct towards him:--

"April 16, 1845. I was at that time in charge of a ministerial office in
the English Church, with persons entrusted to me, and a Bishop to obey;
how could I possibly write otherwise than I did without violating sacred
obligations and betraying momentous interests which were upon me? I felt
that my immediate, undeniable duty, clear if any thing was clear, was to
fulfil that trust. It might be right indeed to give it up, that was
another thing; but it never could be right to hold it, and to act as if
I did not hold it.... If you knew me, you would acquit me, I think, of
having ever felt towards your Lordship in an unfriendly spirit, or ever
having had a shadow on my mind (as far as I dare witness about myself)
of what might be called controversial rivalry or desire of getting the
better, or fear lest the world should think I had got the worse, or
irritation of any kind. You are too kind indeed to imply this, and yet
your words lead me to say it. And now in like manner, pray believe,
though I cannot explain it to you, that I am encompassed with
responsibilities, so great and so various, as utterly to overcome me,
unless I have mercy from Him, who all through my life has sustained and
guided me, and to whom I can now submit myself, though men of all
parties are thinking evil of me."

       *       *       *       *       *

Such fidelity, however, was taken _in malam partem_ by the high Anglican
authorities; they thought it insidious. I happen still to have a
correspondence which took place in 1843, in which the chief place is
filled by one of the most eminent Bishops of the day, a theologian and
reader of the Fathers, a moderate man, who at one time was talked of as
likely on a vacancy to succeed to the Primacy. A young clergyman in his
diocese became a Catholic; the papers at once reported on authority from
"a very high quarter," that, after his reception, "the Oxford men had
been recommending him to retain his living." I had reasons for thinking
that the allusion was made to me, and I authorized the Editor of a
Paper, who had inquired of me on the point, to "give it, as far as I was
concerned, an unqualified contradiction;"--when from a motive of
delicacy he hesitated, I added "my direct and indignant contradiction."
"Whoever is the author of it," I continued to the Editor, "no
correspondence or intercourse of any kind, direct or indirect, has
passed between Mr. S. and myself, since his conforming to the Church of
Rome, except my formally and merely acknowledging the receipt of his
letter, in which he informed me of the fact, without, as far as I
recollect, my expressing any opinion upon it. You may state this as
broadly as I have set it down." My denial was told to the Bishop; what
took place upon it is given in a letter from which I copy. "My father
showed the letter to the Bishop, who, as he laid it down, said, 'Ah,
those Oxford men are not ingenuous.' 'How do you mean?' asked my father.
'Why,' said the Bishop, 'they advised Mr. B. S. to retain his living
after he turned Catholic. I know that to be a fact, because A. B. told
me so.'" "The Bishop," continues the letter, "who is perhaps the most
influential man in reality on the bench, evidently believes it to be the
truth." Upon this Dr. Pusey wrote in my behalf to the Bishop; and the
Bishop instantly beat a retreat. "I have the honour," he says in the
autograph which I transcribe, "to acknowledge the receipt of your note,
and to say in reply that it has not been stated by me, (though such a
statement has, I believe, appeared in some of the Public Prints,) that
Mr. Newman had advised Mr. B. S. to retain his living, after he had
forsaken our Church. But it has been stated to me, that Mr. Newman was
in close correspondence with Mr. B. S., and, being fully aware of his
state of opinions and feelings, yet advised him to continue in our
communion. Allow me to add," he says to Dr. Pusey, "that neither your
name, nor that of Mr. Keble, was mentioned to me in connexion with that
of Mr. B. S."

I was not going to let the Bishop off on this evasion, so I wrote to him
myself. After quoting his Letter to Dr. Pusey, I continued, "I beg to
trouble your Lordship with my own account of the two allegations"
[_close correspondence_ and _fully aware_, &c.] "which are contained in
your statement, and which have led to your speaking of me in terms which
I hope never to deserve. 1. Since Mr. B. S. has been in your Lordship's
diocese, I have seen him in Common rooms or private parties in Oxford
two or three times, when I never (as far as I can recollect) had any
conversation with him. During the same time I have, to the best of my
memory, written to him three letters. One was lately, in acknowledgment
of his informing me of his change of religion. Another was last summer,
when I asked him (to no purpose) to come and stay with me in this place.
The earliest of the three letters was written just a year since, as far
as I recollect, and it certainly was on the subject of his joining the
Church of Rome. I wrote this letter at the earnest wish of a friend of
his. I cannot be sure that, on his replying, I did not send him a brief
note in explanation of points in my letter which he had misapprehended.
I cannot recollect any other correspondence between us.

"2. As to my knowledge of his opinions and feelings, as far as I
remember, the only point of perplexity which I knew, the only point
which to this hour I know, as pressing upon him, was that of the Pope's
supremacy. He professed to be searching Antiquity whether the see of
Rome had formerly that relation to the whole Church which Roman
Catholics now assign to it. My letter was directed to the point, that it
was his duty not to perplex himself with arguments on [such] a question,
... and to put it altogether aside.... It is hard that I am put upon my
memory, without knowing the details of the statement made against me,
considering the various correspondence in which I am from time to time
unavoidably engaged.... Be assured, my Lord, that there are very
definite limits, beyond which persons like me would never urge another
to retain preferment in the English Church, nor would retain it
themselves; and that the censure which has been directed against them by
so many of its Rulers has a very grave bearing upon those limits." The
Bishop replied in a civil letter, and sent my own letter to his original
informant, who wrote to me the letter of a gentleman. It seems that an
anxious lady had said something or other which had been misinterpreted,
against her real meaning, into the calumny which was circulated, and so
the report vanished into thin air. I closed the correspondence with the
following Letter to the Bishop:--

"I hope your Lordship will believe me when I say, that statements about
me, equally incorrect with that which has come to your Lordship's ears,
are from time to time reported to me as credited and repeated by the
highest authorities in our Church, though it is very seldom that I have
the opportunity of denying them. I am obliged by your Lordship's letter
to Dr. Pusey as giving me such an opportunity." Then I added, with a
purpose, "Your Lordship will observe that in my Letter I had no occasion
to proceed to the question, whether a person holding Roman Catholic
opinions can in honesty remain in our Church. Lest then any
misconception should arise from my silence, I here take the liberty of
adding, that I see nothing wrong in such a person's continuing in
communion with us, provided he holds no preferment or office, abstains
from the management of ecclesiastical matters, and is bound by no
subscription or oath to our doctrines."

This was written on March 8, 1843, and was in anticipation of my own
retirement into lay communion. This again leads me to a remark:--for two
years I was in lay communion, not indeed being a Catholic in my
convictions, but in a state of serious doubt, and with the probable
prospect of becoming some day, what as yet I was not. Under these
circumstances I thought the best thing I could do was to give up duty
and to throw myself into lay communion, remaining an Anglican. I could
not go to Rome, while I thought what I did of the devotions she
sanctioned to the Blessed Virgin and the Saints. I did not give up my
fellowship, for I could not be sure that my doubts would not be reduced
or overcome, however unlikely I might consider such an event. But I gave
up my living; and, for two years before my conversion, I took no
clerical duty. My last Sermon was in September, 1843; then I remained at
Littlemore in quiet for two years. But it was made a subject of reproach
to me at the time, and is at this day, that I did not leave the Anglican
Church sooner. To me this seems a wonderful charge; why, even had I been
quite sure that Rome was the true Church, the Anglican Bishops would
have had no just subject of complaint against me, provided I took no
Anglican oath, no clerical duty, no ecclesiastical administration. Do
they force all men who go to their Churches to believe in the 39
Articles, or to join in the Athanasian Creed? However, I was to have
other measure dealt to me; great authorities ruled it so; and a great
controversialist, Mr. Stanley Faber, thought it a shame that I did not
leave the Church of England as much as ten years sooner than I did. He
said this in print between the years 1847 and 1849. His nephew, an
Anglican clergyman, kindly wished to undeceive him on this point. So, in
the latter year, after some correspondence, I wrote the following
letter, which will be of service to this narrative, from its
chronological notes:--

"Dec. 6, 1849. Your uncle says, 'If he (Mr. N.) will declare, _sans
phrase_, as the French say, that I have laboured under an entire
mistake, and that he was not a concealed Romanist during the ten years
in question,' (I suppose, the last ten years of my membership with the
Anglican Church,) 'or during any part of the time, my controversial
antipathy will be at an end, and I will readily express to him that I am
truly sorry that I have made such a mistake.'

"So candid an avowal is what I should have expected from a mind like
your uncle's. I am extremely glad he has brought it to this issue.

"By a 'concealed Romanist' I understand him to mean one, who, professing
to belong to the Church of England, in his heart and will intends to
benefit the Church of Rome, at the expense of the Church of England. He
cannot mean by the expression merely a person who in fact is benefiting
the Church of Rome, while he is intending to benefit the Church of
England, for that is no discredit to him morally, and he (your uncle)
evidently means to impute blame.

"In the sense in which I have explained the words, I can simply and
honestly say that I was not a concealed Romanist during the whole, or
any part of, the years in question.

"For the first four years of the ten, (up to Michaelmas, 1839,) I
honestly wished to benefit the Church of England, at the expense of the
Church of Rome:

"For the second four years I wished to benefit the Church of England
without prejudice to the Church of Rome:

"At the beginning of the ninth year (Michaelmas, 1843) I began to
despair of the Church of England, and gave up all clerical duty; and
then, what I wrote and did was influenced by a mere wish not to injure
it, and not by the wish to benefit it:

"At the beginning of the tenth year I distinctly contemplated leaving
it, but I also distinctly told my friends that it was in my

"Lastly, during the last half of that tenth year I was engaged in
writing a book (Essay on Development) in favour of the Roman Church, and
indirectly against the English; but even then, till it was finished, I
had not absolutely intended to publish it, wishing to reserve to myself
the chance of changing my mind when the argumentative views which were
actuating me had been distinctly brought out before me in writing.

"I wish this statement, which I make from memory, and without consulting
any document, severely tested by my writings and doings, as I am
confident it will, on the whole, be borne out, whatever real or apparent
exceptions (I suspect none) have to be allowed by me in detail.

"Your uncle is at liberty to make what use he pleases of this

       *       *       *       *       *

I have now reached an important date in my narrative, the year 1843; but
before proceeding to the matters which it contains, I will insert
portions of my letters from 1841 to 1843, addressed to Catholic

1. "April 8, 1841 ... The unity of the Church Catholic is very near my
heart, only I do not see any prospect of it in our time; and I despair
of its being effected without great sacrifices on all hands. As to
resisting the Bishop's will, I observe that no point of doctrine or
principle was in dispute, but a course of action, the publication of
certain works. I do not think you sufficiently understood our position.
I suppose you would obey the Holy See in such a case; now, when we were
separated from the Pope, his authority reverted to our Diocesans. Our
Bishop is our Pope. It is our theory, that each diocese is an integral
Church, intercommunion being a duty, (and the breach of it a sin,) but
not essential to Catholicity. To have resisted my Bishop, would have
been to place myself in an utterly false position, which I never could
have recovered. Depend upon it, the strength of any party lies in its
being _true to its theory_. Consistency is the life of a movement.

"I have no misgivings whatever that the line I have taken can be other
than a prosperous one: that is, in itself, for of course Providence may
refuse to us its legitimate issues for our sins.

"I am afraid, that in one respect you may be disappointed. It is my
trust, though I must not be too sanguine, that we shall not have
individual members of our communion going over to yours. What one's duty
would be under other circumstances, what our duty would have been ten or
twenty years ago, I cannot say; but I do think that there is less of
private judgment in going with one's Church, than in leaving it. I can
earnestly desire a union between my Church and yours. I cannot listen to
the thought of your being joined by individuals among us."

2. "April 26, 1841. My only anxiety is lest your branch of the Church
should not meet us by those reforms which surely are _necessary_. It
never could be, that so large a portion of Christendom should have split
off from the communion of Rome, and kept up a protest for 300 years for
nothing. I think I never shall believe that so much piety and
earnestness would be found among Protestants, if there were not some
very grave errors on the side of Rome. To suppose the contrary is most
unreal, and violates all one's notions of moral probabilities. All
aberrations are founded on, and have their life in, some truth or
other--and Protestantism, so widely spread and so long enduring, must
have in it, and must be witness for, a great truth or much truth. That I
am an advocate for Protestantism, you cannot suppose;--but I am forced
into a _Via Media_, short of Rome, as it is at present."

3. "May 5, 1841. While I most sincerely hold that there is in the Roman
Church a traditionary system which is not necessarily connected with her
essential formularies, yet, were I ever so much to change my mind on
this point, this would not tend to bring me from my present position,
providentially appointed in the English Church. That your communion was
unassailable, would not prove that mine was indefensible. Nor would it
at all affect the sense in which I receive our Articles; they would
still speak against certain definite errors, though you had reformed

"I say this lest any lurking suspicion should be left in the mind of
your friends that persons who think with me are likely, by the growth of
their present views, to find it imperative on them to pass over to your
communion. Allow me to state strongly, that if you have any such
thoughts, and proceed to act upon them, your friends will be committing
a fatal mistake. We have (I trust) the principle and temper of obedience
too intimately wrought into us to allow of our separating ourselves from
our ecclesiastical superiors because in many points we may sympathize
with others. We have too great a horror of the principle of private
judgment to trust it in so immense a matter as that of changing from one
communion to another. We may be cast out of our communion, or it may
decree heresy to be truth,--you shall say whether such contingencies are
likely; but I do not see other conceivable causes of our leaving the
Church in which we were baptized.

"For myself, persons must be well acquainted with what I have written
before they venture to say whether I have much changed my main opinions
and cardinal views in the course of the last eight years. That my
_sympathies_ have grown towards the religion of Rome I do not deny; that
my _reasons_ for _shunning_ her communion have lessened or altered it
would be difficult perhaps to prove. And I wish to go by reason, not by

4. "June 18, 1841. You urge persons whose views agree with mine to
commence a movement in behalf of a union between the Churches. Now in
the letters I have written, I have uniformly said that I did not expect
that union in our time, and have discouraged the notion of all sudden
proceedings with a view to it. I must ask your leave to repeat on this
occasion most distinctly, that I cannot be party to any agitation, but
mean to remain quiet in my own place, and to do all I can to make others
take the same course. This I conceive to be my simple duty; but, over
and above this, I will not set my teeth on edge with sour grapes. I know
it is quite within the range of possibilities that one or another of our
people should go over to your communion; however, it would be a greater
misfortune to you than grief to us. If your friends wish to put a gulf
between themselves and us, let them make converts, but not else. Some
months ago, I ventured to say that I felt it a painful duty to keep
aloof from all Roman Catholics who came with the intention of opening
negotiations for the union of the Churches: when you now urge us to
petition our Bishops for a union, this, I conceive, is very like an act
of negotiation."

5. I have the first sketch or draft of a letter, which I wrote to a
zealous Catholic layman: it runs as follows, as far as I have preserved
it, but I think there were various changes and additions:--"September
12, 1841. It would rejoice all Catholic minds among us, more than words
can say, if you could persuade members of the Church of Rome to take the
line in politics which you so earnestly advocate. Suspicion and distrust
are the main causes at present of the separation between us, and the
nearest approaches in doctrine will but increase the hostility, which,
alas, our people feel towards yours, while these causes continue. Depend
upon it, you must not rely upon our Catholic tendencies till they are
removed. I am not speaking of myself, or of any friends of mine; but of
our Church generally. Whatever _our_ personal feelings may be, we shall
but tend to raise and spread a _rival_ Church to yours in the four
quarters of the world, unless _you_ do what none but you _can_ do.
Sympathies, which would flow over to the Church of Rome, as a matter of
course, did she admit them, will but be developed in the consolidation
of our own system, if she continues to be the object of our suspicions
and fears. I wish, of course I do, that our own Church may be built up
and extended, but still, not at the cost of the Church of Rome, not in
opposition to it. I am sure, that, while you suffer, we suffer too from
the separation; _but we cannot remove the obstacles_; it is with you to
do so. You do not fear us; we fear you. Till we cease to fear you, we
cannot love you.

"While you are in your present position, the friends of Catholic unity
in our Church are but fulfilling the prediction of those of your body
who are averse to them, viz. that they will be merely strengthening a
rival communion to yours. Many of you say that _we_ are your greatest
enemies; we have said so ourselves: so we are, so we shall be, as things
stand at present. We are keeping people from you, by supplying their
wants in our own Church. We _are_ keeping persons from you: do you wish
us to keep them from you for a time or for ever? It rests with you to
determine. I do not fear that you will succeed among us; you will not
supplant our Church in the affections of the English nation; only
through the English Church can you act upon the English nation. I wish
of course our Church should be consolidated, with and through and in
your communion, for its sake, and your sake, and for the sake of unity.

"Are you aware that the more serious thinkers among us are used, as far
as they dare form an opinion, to regard the spirit of Liberalism as the
characteristic of the destined Antichrist? In vain does any one clear
the Church of Rome from the badges of Antichrist, in which Protestants
would invest her, if she deliberately takes up her position in the very
quarter, whither we have cast them, when we took them off from her.
Antichrist is described as the [Greek: anomos], as exalting himself
above the yoke of religion and law. The spirit of lawlessness came in
with the Reformation, and Liberalism is its offspring.

"And now I fear I am going to pain you by telling you, that you consider
the approaches in doctrine on our part towards you, closer than they
really are. I cannot help repeating what I have many times said in
print, that your services and devotions to St. Mary in matter of fact do
most deeply pain me. I am only stating it as a fact.

"Again, I have nowhere said that I can accept the decrees of Trent
throughout, nor implied it. The doctrine of Transubstantiation is a
great difficulty with me, as being, as I think, not primitive. Nor have
I said that our Articles in all respects admit of a Roman
interpretation; the very word 'Transubstantiation' is disowned in them.

"Thus, you see, it is not merely on grounds of expedience that we do not
join you. There are positive difficulties in the way of it. And, even if
there were not, we shall have no divine warrant for doing so, while we
think that the Church of England is a branch of the true Church, and
that intercommunion with the rest of Christendom is necessary, not for
the life of a particular Church, but for its health only. I have never
disguised that there are actual circumstances in the Church of Rome,
which pain me much; of the removal of these I see no chance, while we
join you one by one; but if our Church were prepared for a union, she
might make her terms; she might gain the cup; she might protest against
the extreme honours paid to St. Mary; she might make some explanation of
the doctrine of Transubstantiation. I am not prepared to say that a
reform in other branches of the Roman Church would be necessary for our
uniting with them, however desirable in itself, so that we were allowed
to make a reform in our own country. We do not look towards Rome as
believing that its communion is infallible, but that union is a duty."

6. The following letter was occasioned by the present made to me of a
book by the friend to whom it is written; more will be said on the
subject of it presently:--

"Nov. 22, 1842. I only wish that your Church were more known among us by
such writings. You will not interest us in her, till we see her, not in
politics, but in her true functions of exhorting, teaching, and guiding.
I wish there were a chance of making the leading men among you
understand, what I believe is no novel thought to yourself. It is not by
learned discussions, or acute arguments, or reports of miracles, that
the heart of England can be gained. It is by men 'approving themselves,'
like the Apostle, 'ministers of Christ.'

"As to your question, whether the Volume you have sent is not calculated
to remove my apprehensions that another gospel is substituted for the
true one in your practical instructions, before I can answer it in any
way, I ought to know how far the Sermons which it comprises are
_selected_ from a number, or whether they are the whole, or such as the
whole, which have been published of the author's. I assure you, or at
least I trust, that, if it is ever clearly brought home to me that I
have been wrong in what I have said on this subject, my public avowal of
that conviction will only be a question of time with me.

"If, however, you saw our Church as we see it, you would easily
understand that such a change of feeling, did it take place, would have
no necessary tendency, which you seem to expect, to draw a person from
the Church of England to that of Rome. There is a divine life among us,
clearly manifested, in spite of all our disorders, which is as great a
note of the Church, as any can be. Why should we seek our Lord's
presence elsewhere, when He vouchsafes it to us where we are? What
_call_ have we to change our communion?

"Roman Catholics will find this to be the state of things in time to
come, whatever promise they may fancy there is of a large secession to
their Church. This man or that may leave us, but there will be no
general movement. There is, indeed, an incipient movement of our
_Church_ towards yours, and this your leading men are doing all they can
to frustrate by their unwearied efforts at all risks to carry off
individuals. When will they know their position, and embrace a larger
and wiser policy?"

§ 2.

The letter which I have last inserted, is addressed to my dear friend,
Dr. Russell, the present President of Maynooth. He had, perhaps, more to
do with my conversion than any one else. He called upon me, in passing
through Oxford in the summer of 1841, and I think I took him over some
of the buildings of the University. He called again another summer, on
his way from Dublin to London. I do not recollect that he said a word on
the subject of religion on either occasion. He sent me at different
times several letters; he was always gentle, mild, unobtrusive,
uncontroversial. He let me alone. He also gave me one or two books.
Veron's Rule of Faith and some Treatises of the Wallenburghs was one; a
volume of St. Alfonso Liguori's Sermons was another; and it is to those
Sermons that my letter to Dr. Russell relates.

Now it must be observed that the writings of St. Alfonso, as I knew them
by the extracts commonly made from them, prejudiced me as much against
the Roman Church as any thing else, on account of what was called their
"Mariolatry;" but there was nothing of the kind in this book. I wrote to
ask Dr. Russell whether any thing had been left out in the translation;
he answered that there certainly were omissions in one Sermon about the
Blessed Virgin. This omission, in the case of a book intended for
Catholics, at least showed that such passages as are found in the works
of Italian Authors were not acceptable to every part of the Catholic
world. Such devotional manifestations in honour of our Lady had been my
great _crux_ as regards Catholicism; I say frankly, I do not fully enter
into them now; I trust I do not love her the less, because I cannot
enter into them. They may be fully explained and defended; but sentiment
and taste do not run with logic: they are suitable for Italy, but they
are not suitable for England. But, over and above England, my own case
was special; from a boy I had been led to consider that my Maker and I,
His creature, were the two beings, luminously such, _in rerum naturâ_. I
will not here speculate, however, about my own feelings. Only this I
know full well now, and did not know then, that the Catholic Church
allows no image of any sort, material or immaterial, no dogmatic symbol,
no rite, no sacrament, no Saint, not even the Blessed Virgin herself, to
come between the soul and its Creator. It is face to face, "solus cum
solo," in all matters between man and his God. He alone creates; He
alone has redeemed; before His awful eyes we go in death; in the vision
of Him is our eternal beatitude.

1. Solus cum solo:--I recollect but indistinctly what I gained from the
Volume of which I have been speaking; but it must have been something
considerable. At least I had got a key to a difficulty; in these
Sermons, (or rather heads of sermons, as they seem to be, taken down by
a hearer,) there is much of what would be called legendary illustration;
but the substance of them is plain, practical, awful preaching upon the
great truths of salvation. What I can speak of with greater confidence
is the effect produced on me a little later by studying the Exercises of
St. Ignatius. For here again, in a matter consisting in the purest and
most direct acts of religion,--in the intercourse between God and the
soul, during a season of recollection, of repentance, of good
resolution, of inquiry into vocation,--the soul was "sola cum solo;"
there was no cloud interposed between the creature and the Object of his
faith and love. The command practically enforced was, "My son, give Me
thy heart." The devotions then to Angels and Saints as little interfered
with the incommunicable glory of the Eternal, as the love which we bear
our friends and relations, our tender human sympathies, are inconsistent
with that supreme homage of the heart to the Unseen, which really does
but sanctify and exalt, not jealously destroy, what is of earth. At a
later date Dr. Russell sent me a large bundle of penny or half-penny
books of devotion, of all sorts, as they are found in the booksellers'
shops at Rome; and, on looking them over, I was quite astonished to find
how different they were from what I had fancied, how little there was in
them to which I could really object. I have given an account of them in
my Essay on the Development of Doctrine. Dr. Russell sent me St.
Alfonso's book at the end of 1842; however, it was still a long time
before I got over my difficulty, on the score of the devotions paid to
the Saints; perhaps, as I judge from a letter I have turned up, it was
some way into 1844 before I could be said fully to have got over it.

2. I am not sure that I did not also at this time feel the force of
another consideration. The idea of the Blessed Virgin was as it were
_magnified_ in the Church of Rome, as time went on,--but so were all the
Christian ideas; as that of the Blessed Eucharist. The whole scene of
pale, faint, distant Apostolic Christianity is seen in Rome, as through
a telescope or magnifier. The harmony of the whole, however, is of
course what it was. It is unfair then to take one Roman idea, that of
the Blessed Virgin, out of what may be called its context.

3. Thus I am brought to the principle of development of doctrine in the
Christian Church, to which I gave my mind at the end of 1842. I had made
mention of it in the passage, which I quoted many pages back (vide p.
111), in "Home Thoughts Abroad," published in 1836; and even at an
earlier date I had introduced it into my History of the Arians in 1832;
nor had I ever lost sight of it in my speculations. And it is certainly
recognized in the Treatise of Vincent of Lerins, which has so often been
taken as the basis of Anglicanism. In 1843 I began to consider it
attentively; I made it the subject of my last University Sermon on
February 2; and the general view to which I came is stated thus in a
letter to a friend of the date of July 14, 1844;--it will be observed
that, now as before, my _issue_ is still Creed _versus_ Church:--

"The kind of considerations which weighs with me are such as the
following:--1. I am far more certain (according to the Fathers) that we
_are_ in a state of culpable separation, _than_ that developments do
_not_ exist under the Gospel, and that the Roman developments are not
the true ones. 2. I am far more certain, that _our_ (modern) doctrines
are wrong, _than_ that the _Roman_ (modern) doctrines are wrong. 3.
Granting that the Roman (special) doctrines are not found drawn out in
the early Church, yet I think there is sufficient trace of them in it,
to recommend and prove them, _on the hypothesis_ of the Church having a
divine guidance, though not sufficient to prove them by itself. So that
the question simply turns on the nature of the promise of the Spirit,
made to the Church. 4. The proof of the Roman (modern) doctrine is as
strong (or stronger) in Antiquity, as that of certain doctrines which
both we and Romans hold: e.g. there is more of evidence in Antiquity for
the necessity of Unity, than for the Apostolical Succession; for the
Supremacy of the See of Rome, than for the Presence in the Eucharist;
for the practice of Invocation, than for certain books in the present
Canon of Scripture, &c. &c. 5. The analogy of the Old Testament, and
also of the New, leads to the acknowledgment of doctrinal developments."

4. And thus I was led on to a further consideration. I saw that the
principle of development not only accounted for certain facts, but was
in itself a remarkable philosophical phenomenon, giving a character to
the whole course of Christian thought. It was discernible from the first
years of the Catholic teaching up to the present day, and gave to that
teaching a unity and individuality. It served as a sort of test, which
the Anglican could not exhibit, that modern Rome was in truth ancient
Antioch, Alexandria, and Constantinople, just as a mathematical curve
has its own law and expression.

5. And thus again I was led on to examine more attentively what I doubt
not was in my thoughts long before, viz. the concatenation of argument
by which the mind ascends from its first to its final religious idea;
and I came to the conclusion that there was no medium, in true
philosophy, between Atheism and Catholicity, and that a perfectly
consistent mind, under those circumstances in which it finds itself here
below, must embrace either the one or the other. And I hold this still:
I am a Catholic by virtue of my believing in a God; and if I am asked
why I believe in a God, I answer that it is because I believe in myself,
for I feel it impossible to believe in my own existence (and of that
fact I am quite sure) without believing also in the existence of Him,
who lives as a Personal, All-seeing, All-judging Being in my conscience.
Now, I dare say, I have not expressed myself with philosophical
correctness, because I have not given myself to the study of what
metaphysicians have said on the subject; but I think I have a strong
true meaning in what I say which will stand examination.

6. Moreover, I found a corroboration of the fact of the logical
connexion of Theism with Catholicism in a consideration parallel to that
which I had adopted on the subject of development of doctrine. The fact
of the operation from first to last of that principle of development in
the truths of Revelation, is an argument in favour of the identity of
Roman and Primitive Christianity; but as there is a law which acts upon
the subject-matter of dogmatic theology, so is there a law in the matter
of religious faith. In the first chapter of this Narrative I spoke of
certitude as the consequence, divinely intended and enjoined upon us, of
the accumulative force of certain given reasons which, taken one by one,
were only probabilities. Let it be recollected that I am historically
relating my state of mind, at the period of my life which I am
surveying. I am not speaking theologically, nor have I any intention of
going into controversy, or of defending myself; but speaking
historically of what I held in 1843-4, I say, that I believed in a God
on a ground of probability, that I believed in Christianity on a
probability, and that I believed in Catholicism on a probability, and
that these three grounds of probability, distinct from each other of
course in subject matter, were still all of them one and the same in
nature of proof, as being probabilities--probabilities of a special
kind, a cumulative, a transcendent probability but still probability;
inasmuch as He who made us has so willed, that in mathematics indeed we
should arrive at certitude by rigid demonstration, but in religious
inquiry we should arrive at certitude by accumulated probabilities;--He
has willed, I say, that we should so act, and, as willing it, He
co-operates with us in our acting, and thereby enables us to do that
which He wills us to do, and carries us on, if our will does but
co-operate with His, to a certitude which rises higher than the logical
force of our conclusions. And thus I came to see clearly, and to have a
satisfaction in seeing, that, in being led on into the Church of Rome, I
was not proceeding on any secondary or isolated grounds of reason, or by
controversial points in detail, but was protected and justified, even in
the use of those secondary or particular arguments, by a great and broad
principle. But, let it be observed, that I am stating a matter of fact,
not defending it; and if any Catholic says in consequence that I have
been converted in a wrong way, I cannot help that now.

I have nothing more to say on the subject of the change in my religious
opinions. On the one hand I came gradually to see that the Anglican
Church was formally in the wrong, on the other that the Church of Rome
was formally in the right; then, that no valid reasons could be assigned
for continuing in the Anglican, and again that no valid objections could
be taken to joining the Roman. Then, I had nothing more to learn; what
still remained for my conversion, was, not further change of opinion,
but to change opinion itself into the clearness and firmness of
intellectual conviction.

Now I proceed to detail the acts, to which I committed myself during
this last stage of my inquiry.

       *       *       *       *       *

In 1843, I took two very significant steps:--1. In February, I made a
formal Retractation of all the hard things which I had said against the
Church of Rome. 2. In September, I resigned the Living of St. Mary's,
Littlemore included:--I will speak of these two acts separately.

1. The words, in which I made my Retractation, have given rise to much
criticism. After quoting a number of passages from my writings against
the Church of Rome, which I withdrew, I ended thus:--"If you ask me how
an individual could venture, not simply to hold, but to publish such
views of a communion so ancient, so wide-spreading, so fruitful in
Saints, I answer that I said to myself, 'I am not speaking my own words,
I am but following almost a _consensus_ of the divines of my own Church.
They have ever used the strongest language against Rome, even the most
able and learned of them. I wish to throw myself into their system.
While I say what they say, I am safe. Such views, too, are necessary for
our position.' Yet I have reason to fear still, that such language is to
be ascribed, in no small measure, to an impetuous temper, a hope of
approving myself to persons I respect, and a wish to repel the charge of

These words have been, and are, again and again cited against me, as if
a confession that, when in the Anglican Church, I said things against
Rome which I did not really believe.

For myself, I cannot understand how any impartial man can so take them;
and I have explained them in print several times. I trust that by this
time their plain meaning has been satisfactorily brought out by what I
have said in former portions of this Narrative; still I have a word or
two to say in addition to my former remarks upon them.

In the passage in question I apologize for _saying out_ in controversy
charges against the Church of Rome, which withal I affirm that I fully
_believed_ at the time when I made them. What is wonderful in such an
apology? There are surely many things a man may hold, which at the same
time he may feel that he has no right to say publicly, and which it may
annoy him that he has said publicly. The law recognizes this principle.
In our own time, men have been imprisoned and fined for saying true
things of a bad king. The maxim has been held, that, "The greater the
truth, the greater is the libel." And so as to the judgment of society,
a just indignation would be felt against a writer who brought forward
wantonly the weaknesses of a great man, though the whole world knew that
they existed. No one is at liberty to speak ill of another without a
justifiable reason, even though he knows he is speaking truth, and the
public knows it too. Therefore, though I believed what I said against
the Roman Church, nevertheless I could not religiously speak it out,
unless I was really justified, not only in believing ill, but in
speaking ill. I did believe what I said on what I thought to be good
reasons; but had I also a just cause for saying out what I believed? I
thought I had, and it was this, viz. that to say out what I believed was
simply necessary in the controversy for self-defence. It was impossible
to let it alone: the Anglican position could not be satisfactorily
maintained, without assailing the Roman. In this, as in most cases of
conflict, one party was right or the other, not both; and the best
defence was to attack. Is not this almost a truism in the Roman
controversy? Is it not what every one says, who speaks on the subject at
all? Does any serious man abuse the Church of Rome, for the sake of
abusing her, or because that abuse justifies his own religious position?
What is the meaning of the very word "Protestantism," but that there is
a call to speak out? This then is what I said: "I know I spoke strongly
against the Church of Rome; but it was no mere abuse, for I had a
serious reason for doing so."

But, not only did I think such language necessary for my Church's
religious position, but I recollected that all the great Anglican
divines had thought so before me. They had thought so, and they had
acted accordingly. And therefore I observe in the passage in question,
with much propriety, that I had not used strong language simply out of
my own head, but that in doing so I was following the track, or rather
reproducing the teaching, of those who had preceded me.

I was pleading guilty to using violent language, but I was pleading also
that there were extenuating circumstances in the case. We all know the
story of the convict, who on the scaffold bit off his mother's ear. By
doing so he did not deny the fact of his own crime, for which he was to
hang; but he said that his mother's indulgence when he was a boy, had a
good deal to do with it. In like manner I had made a charge, and I had
made it _ex animo_; but I accused others of having, by their own
example, led me into believing it and publishing it.

I was in a humour, certainly, to bite off their ears. I will freely
confess, indeed I said it some pages back, that I was angry with the
Anglican divines. I thought they had taken me in; I had read the Fathers
with their eyes; I had sometimes trusted their quotations or their
reasonings; and from reliance on them, I had used words or made
statements, which by right I ought rigidly to have examined myself. I
had thought myself safe, while I had their warrant for what I said. I
had exercised more faith than criticism in the matter. This did not
imply any broad misstatements on my part, arising from reliance on their
authority, but it implied carelessness in matters of detail. And this of
course was a fault.

But there was a far deeper reason for my saying what I said in this
matter, on which I have not hitherto touched; and it was this:--The most
oppressive thought, in the whole process of my change of opinion, was
the clear anticipation, verified by the event, that it would issue in
the triumph of Liberalism. Against the Anti-dogmatic principle I had
thrown my whole mind; yet now I was doing more than any one else could
do, to promote it. I was one of those who had kept it at bay in Oxford
for so many years; and thus my very retirement was its triumph. The men
who had driven me from Oxford were distinctly the Liberals; it was they
who had opened the attack upon Tract 90, and it was they who would gain
a second benefit, if I went on to abandon the Anglican Church. But this
was not all. As I have already said, there are but two alternatives, the
way to Rome, and the way to Atheism: Anglicanism is the halfway house on
the one side, and Liberalism is the halfway house on the other. How many
men were there, as I knew full well, who would not follow me now in my
advance from Anglicanism to Rome, but would at once leave Anglicanism
and me for the Liberal camp. It is not at all easy (humanly speaking) to
wind up an Englishman to a dogmatic level. I had done so in good
measure, in the case both of young men and of laymen, the Anglican _Via
Media_ being the representative of dogma. The dogmatic and the Anglican
principle were one, as I had taught them; but I was breaking the _Via
Media_ to pieces, and would not dogmatic faith altogether be broken up,
in the minds of a great number, by the demolition of the _Via Media_?
Oh! how unhappy this made me! I heard once from an eye-witness the
account of a poor sailor whose legs were shattered by a ball, in the
action off Algiers in 1816, and who was taken below for an operation.
The surgeon and the chaplain persuaded him to have a leg off; it was
done and the tourniquet applied to the wound. Then, they broke it to him
that he must have the other off too. The poor fellow said, "You should
have told me that, gentlemen," and deliberately unscrewed the instrument
and bled to death. Would not that be the case with many friends of my
own? How could I ever hope to make them believe in a second theology,
when I had cheated them in the first? With what face could I publish a
new edition of a dogmatic creed, and ask them to receive it as gospel?
Would it not be plain to them that no certainty was to be found any
where? Well, in my defence I could but make a lame apology; however, it
was the true one, viz. that I had not read the Fathers cautiously
enough; that in such nice points, as those which determine the angle of
divergence between the two Churches, I had made considerable
miscalculations. But how came this about? why, the fact was, unpleasant
as it was to avow, that I had leaned too much upon the assertions of
Ussher, Jeremy Taylor, or Barrow, and had been deceived by them. Valeat
quantum,--it was all that _could_ be said. This then was a chief reason
of that wording of the Retractation, which has given so much offence,
because the bitterness, with which it was written, was not
understood;--and the following letter will illustrate it:--

"April 3, 1844. I wish to remark on William's chief distress, that my
changing my opinion seemed to unsettle one's confidence in truth and
falsehood as external things, and led one to be suspicious of the new
opinion as one became distrustful of the old. Now in what I shall say, I
am not going to speak in favour of my second thoughts in comparison of
my first, but against such scepticism and unsettlement about truth and
falsehood generally, the idea of which is very painful.

"The case with me, then, was this, and not surely an unnatural one:--as
a matter of feeling and of duty I threw myself into the system which I
found myself in. I saw that the English Church had a theological idea or
theory as such, and I took it up. I read Laud on Tradition, and thought
it (as I still think it) very masterly. The Anglican Theory was very
distinctive. I admired it and took it on faith. It did not (I think)
occur to me to doubt it; I saw that it was able, and supported by
learning, and I felt it was a duty to maintain it. Further, on looking
into Antiquity and reading the Fathers, I saw such portions of it as I
examined, fully confirmed (e.g. the supremacy of Scripture). There was
only one question about which I had a doubt, viz. whether it would
_work_, for it has never been more than a paper system....

"So far from my change of opinion having any fair tendency to unsettle
persons as to truth and falsehood viewed as objective realities, it
should be considered whether such change is not _necessary_, if truth be
a real objective thing, and be made to confront a person who has been
brought up in a system _short of_ truth. Surely the _continuance_ of a
person, who wishes to go right, in a wrong system, and not his _giving
it up_, would be that which militated against the objectiveness of
Truth, leading, as it would, to the suspicion, that one thing and
another were equally pleasing to our Maker, where men were sincere.

"Nor surely is it a thing I need be sorry for, that I defended the
system in which I found myself, and thus have had to unsay my words. For
is it not one's duty, instead of beginning with criticism, to throw
oneself generously into that form of religion which is providentially
put before one? Is it right, or is it wrong, to begin with private
judgment? May we not, on the other hand, look for a blessing _through_
obedience even to an erroneous system, and a guidance even by means of
it out of it? Were those who were strict and conscientious in their
Judaism, or those who were lukewarm and sceptical, more likely to be led
into Christianity, when Christ came? Yet in proportion to their previous
zeal, would be their appearance of inconsistency. Certainly, I have
always contended that obedience even to an erring conscience was the way
to gain light, and that it mattered not where a man began, so that he
began on what came to hand, and in faith; and that any thing might
become a divine method of Truth; that to the pure all things are pure,
and have a self-correcting virtue and a power of germinating. And though
I have no right at all to assume that this mercy is granted to me, yet
the fact, that a person in my situation _may_ have it granted to him,
seems to me to remove the perplexity which my change of opinion may

"It may be said,--I have said it to myself,--'Why, however, did you
_publish_? had you waited quietly, you would have changed your opinion
without any of the misery, which now is involved in the change, of
disappointing and distressing people.' I answer, that things are so
bound up together, as to form a whole, and one cannot tell what is or is
not a condition of what. I do not see how possibly I could have
published the Tracts, or other works professing to defend our Church,
without accompanying them with a strong protest or argument against
Rome. The one obvious objection against the whole Anglican line is, that
it is Roman; so that I really think there was no alternative between
silence altogether, and forming a theory and attacking the Roman

2. And now, in the next place, as to my Resignation of St. Mary's, which
was the second of the steps which I took in 1843. The ostensible,
direct, and sufficient reason for my doing so was the persevering attack
of the Bishops on Tract 90. I alluded to it in the letter which I have
inserted above, addressed to one of the most influential among them. A
series of their _ex cathedrâ_ judgments, lasting through three years,
and including a notice of no little severity in a Charge of my own
Bishop, came as near to a condemnation of my Tract, and, so far, to a
repudiation of the ancient Catholic doctrine, which was the scope of the
Tract, as was possible in the Church of England. It was in order to
shield the Tract from such a condemnation, that I had at the time of its
publication in 1841 so simply put myself at the disposal of the higher
powers in London. At that time, all that was distinctly contemplated in
the way of censure, was contained in the message which my Bishop sent
me, that the Tract was "objectionable." That I thought was the end of
the matter. I had refused to suppress it, and they had yielded that
point. Since I published the former portions of this Narrative, I have
found what I wrote to Dr. Pusey on March 24, while the matter was in
progress. "The more I think of it," I said, "the more reluctant I am to
suppress Tract 90, though _of course_ I will do it if the Bishop wishes
it; I cannot, however, deny that I shall feel it a severe act."
According to the notes which I took of the letters or messages which I
sent to him on that and the following days, I wrote successively, "My
first feeling was to obey without a word; I will obey still; but my
judgment has steadily risen against it ever since." Then in the
Postscript, "If I have done any good to the Church, I do ask the Bishop
this favour, as my reward for it, that he would not insist on a measure,
from which I think good will not come. However, I will submit to him."
Afterwards, I got stronger still and wrote: "I have almost come to the
resolution, if the Bishop publicly intimates that I must suppress the
Tract, or speaks strongly in his charge against it, to suppress it
indeed, but to resign my living also. I could not in conscience act
otherwise. You may show this in any quarter you please."

All my then hopes, all my satisfaction at the apparent fulfilment of
those hopes was at an end in 1843. It is not wonderful then, that in May
of that year, when two out of the three years were gone, I wrote on the
subject of my retiring from St. Mary's to the same friend, whom I had
consulted upon it in 1840. But I did more now; I told him my great
unsettlement of mind on the question of the Churches. I will insert
portions of two of my letters:--

"May 4, 1843.... At present I fear, as far as I can analyze my own
convictions, I consider the Roman Catholic Communion to be the Church of
the Apostles, and that what grace is among us (which, through God's
mercy, is not little) is extraordinary, and from the overflowings of His
dispensation. I am very far more sure that England is in schism, than
that the Roman additions to the Primitive Creed may not be developments,
arising out of a keen and vivid realizing of the Divine Depositum of

"You will now understand what gives edge to the Bishops' Charges,
without any undue sensitiveness on my part. They distress me in two
ways:--first, as being in some sense protests and witnesses to my
conscience against my own unfaithfulness to the English Church, and
next, as being samples of her teaching, and tokens how very far she is
from even aspiring to Catholicity.

"Of course my being unfaithful to a trust is my great subject of
dread,--as it has long been, as you know."

When he wrote to make natural objections to my purpose, such as the
apprehension that the removal of clerical obligations might have the
indirect effect of propelling me towards Rome, I answered:--

"May 18, 1843.... My office or charge at St. Mary's is not a mere
_state_, but a continual _energy_. People assume and assert certain
things of me in consequence. With what sort of sincerity can I obey the
Bishop? how am I to act in the frequent cases, in which one way or
another the Church of Rome comes into consideration? I have to the
utmost of my power tried to keep persons from Rome, and with some
success; but even a year and a half since, my arguments, though more
efficacious with the persons I aimed at than any others could be, were
of a nature to infuse great suspicion of me into the minds of

"By retaining St. Mary's, I am an offence and a stumbling-block. Persons
are keen-sighted enough to make out what I think on certain points, and
then they infer that such opinions are compatible with holding
situations of trust in our Church. A number of younger men take the
validity of their interpretation of the Articles, &c. from me on
_faith_. Is not my present position a cruelty, as well as a treachery
towards the Church?

"I do not see how I can either preach or publish again, while I hold St.
Mary's;--but consider again the following difficulty in such a
resolution, which I must state at some length.

"Last Long Vacation the idea suggested itself to me of publishing the
Lives of the English Saints; and I had a conversation with [a publisher]
upon it. I thought it would be useful, as employing the minds of men who
were in danger of running wild, bringing them from doctrine to history,
and from speculation to fact;--again, as giving them an interest in the
English soil, and the English Church, and keeping them from seeking
sympathy in Rome, as she is; and further, as tending to promote the
spread of right views.

"But, within the last month, it has come upon me, that, if the scheme
goes on, it will be a practical carrying out of No. 90, from the
character of the usages and opinions of ante-reformation times.

"It is easy to say, 'Why _will_ you do _any_ thing? why won't you keep
quiet? what business had you to think of any such plan at all?' But I
cannot leave a number of poor fellows in the lurch. I am bound to do my
best for a great number of people both in Oxford and elsewhere. If _I_
did not act, others would find means to do so.

"Well, the plan has been taken up with great eagerness and interest.
Many men are setting to work. I set down the names of men, most of them
engaged, the rest half engaged and probable, some actually writing."
About thirty names follow, some of them at that time of the school of
Dr. Arnold, others of Dr. Pusey's, some my personal friends and of my
own standing, others whom I hardly knew, while of course the majority
were of the party of the new Movement. I continue:--

"The plan has gone so far, that it would create surprise and talk, were
it now suddenly given over. Yet how is it compatible with my holding St.
Mary's, being what I am?"

       *       *       *       *       *

Such was the object and the origin of the projected Series of the
English Saints; and, since the publication was connected, as has been
seen, with my resignation of St. Mary's, I may be allowed to conclude
what I have to say on the subject here, though it may read like a
digression. As soon then as the first of the Series got into print, the
whole project broke down. I had already anticipated that some portions
of the Series would be written in a style inconsistent with the
professions of a beneficed clergyman, and therefore I had given up my
Living; but men of great weight went further in their misgivings than I,
when they saw the Life of St. Stephen Harding, and decided that it was
of a character inconsistent even with its proceeding from an Anglican
publisher: and so the scheme was given up at once. After the two first
numbers, I retired from the Editorship, and those Lives only were
published in addition, which were then already finished, or in advanced
preparation. The following passages from what I or others wrote at the
time will illustrate what I have been saying:--

In November, 1844, I wrote thus to the author of one of them: "I am not
Editor, I have no direct control over the Series. It is T.'s work; he
may admit what he pleases; and exclude what he pleases. I was to have
been Editor. I did edit the two first numbers. I was responsible for
them, in the way in which an Editor is responsible. Had I continued
Editor, I should have exercised a control over all. I laid down in the
Preface that doctrinal subjects were, if possible, to be excluded. But,
even then, I also set down that no writer was to be held answerable for
any of the Lives but his own. When I gave up the Editorship, I had
various engagements with friends for separate Lives remaining on my
hands. I should have liked to have broken from them all, but there were
some from which I could not break, and I let them take their course.
Some have come to nothing; others like yours have gone on. I have seen
such, either in MS. or Proof. As time goes on, I shall have less and
less to do with the Series. I think the engagement between you and me
should come to an end. I have any how abundant responsibility on me, and
too much. I shall write to T. that if he wants the advantage of your
assistance, he must write to you direct."

In accordance with this letter, I had already advertised in January
1844, ten months before it, that "other Lives," after St. Stephen
Harding, would "be published by their respective authors on their own
responsibility." This notice was repeated in February, in the
advertisement to the second number entitled "The Family of St. Richard,"
though to this number, for some reason which I cannot now recollect, I
also put my initials. In the Life of St. Augustine, the author, a man of
nearly my own age, says in like manner, "No one but himself is
responsible for the way in which these materials have been used." I have
in MS. another advertisement to the same effect, but I cannot tell
whether it ever appeared in print.

I will add, since the authors have been considered "hot-headed fanatic
young men," whom I was in charge of, and whom I suffered to do
intemperate things, that, while the writer of St. Augustine was in 1844
past forty, the author of the proposed Life of St. Boniface, Mr. Bowden,
was forty-six; Mr. Johnson, who was to write St. Aldhelm, forty-three;
and most of the others were on one side or other of thirty. Three, I
think, were under twenty-five. Moreover, of these writers some became
Catholics, some remained Anglicans, and others have professed what are
called free or liberal opinions[14].

[14] Vide Note D, _Lives of the English Saints_.

       *       *       *       *       *

The immediate cause of the resignation of my Living is stated in the
following letter, which I wrote to my Bishop:--

"August 29, 1843. It is with much concern that I inform your Lordship,
that Mr. A. B., who has been for the last year an inmate of my house
here, has just conformed to the Church of Rome. As I have ever been
desirous, not only of faithfully discharging the trust, which is
involved in holding a living in your Lordship's diocese, but of
approving myself to your Lordship, I will for your information state one
or two circumstances connected with this unfortunate event.... I
received him on condition of his promising me, which he distinctly did,
that he would remain quietly in our Church for three years. A year has
passed since that time, and, though I saw nothing in him which promised
that he would eventually be contented with his present position, yet for
the time his mind became as settled as one could wish, and he frequently
expressed his satisfaction at being under the promise which I had
exacted of him."

I felt it impossible to remain any longer in the service of the Anglican
Church, when such a breach of trust, however little I had to do with it,
would be laid at my door. I wrote in a few days to a friend:

"September 7, 1843. I this day ask the Bishop leave to resign St.
Mary's. Men whom you little think, or at least whom I little thought,
are in almost a hopeless way. Really we may expect any thing. I am going
to publish a Volume of Sermons, including those Four against moving."

       *       *       *       *       *

I resigned my living on September the 18th. I had not the means of doing
it legally at Oxford. The late Mr. Goldsmid was kind enough to aid me in
resigning it in London. I found no fault with the Liberals; they had
beaten me in a fair field. As to the act of the Bishops, I thought, to
borrow a Scriptural image from Walter Scott, that they had "seethed the
kid in his mother's milk."

I said to a friend:--

  "Victrix causa diis placuit, sed victa Catoni."

       *       *       *       *       *

And now I may be almost said to have brought to an end, as far as is
necessary for a sketch such as this is, the history both of my changes
of religious opinion and of the public acts which they involved.

I had one final advance of mind to accomplish, and one final step to
take. That further advance of mind was to be able honestly to say that I
was _certain_ of the conclusions at which I had already arrived. That
further step, imperative when such certitude was attained, was my
_submission_ to the Catholic Church.

This submission did not take place till two full years after the
resignation of my living in September 1843; nor could I have made it at
an earlier day, without doubt and apprehension, that is, with any true
conviction of mind or certitude.

In the interval, of which it remains to speak, viz. between the autumns
of 1843 and 1845, I was in lay communion with the Church of England,
attending its services as usual, and abstaining altogether from
intercourse with Catholics, from their places of worship, and from those
religious rites and usages, such as the Invocation of Saints, which are
characteristics of their creed. I did all this on principle; for I never
could understand how a man could be of two religions at once.

What I have to say about myself between these two autumns I shall almost
confine to this one point,--the difficulty I was in, as to the best mode
of revealing the state of my mind to my friends and others, and how I
managed to reveal it.

       *       *       *       *       *

Up to January, 1842, I had not disclosed my state of unsettlement to
more than three persons, as has been mentioned above, and as is repeated
in the course of the letters which I am now about to give to the reader.
To two of them, intimate and familiar companions, in the Autumn of 1839:
to the third, an old friend too, whom I have also named above, I
suppose, when I was in great distress of mind upon the affair of the
Jerusalem Bishopric. In May, 1843, I made it known, as has been seen, to
the friend, by whose advice I wished, as far as possible, to be guided.
To mention it on set purpose to any one, unless indeed I was asking
advice, I should have felt to be a crime. If there is any thing that was
abhorrent to me, it was the scattering doubts, and unsettling
consciences without necessity. A strong presentiment that my existing
opinions would ultimately give way, and that the grounds of them were
unsound, was not a sufficient warrant for disclosing the state of my
mind. I had no guarantee yet, that that presentiment would be realized.
Supposing I were crossing ice, which came right in my way, which I had
good reasons for considering sound, and which I saw numbers before me
crossing in safety, and supposing a stranger from the bank, in a voice
of authority, and in an earnest tone, warned me that it was dangerous,
and then was silent, I think I should be startled, and should look about
me anxiously, but I think too that I should go on, till I had better
grounds for doubt; and such was my state, I believe, till the end of
1842. Then again, when my dissatisfaction became greater, it was hard at
first to determine the point of time, when it was too strong to suppress
with propriety. Certitude of course is a point, but doubt is a progress;
I was not near certitude yet. Certitude is a reflex action; it is to
know that one knows. Of that I believe I was not possessed, till close
upon my reception into the Catholic Church. Again, a practical,
effective doubt is a point too, but who can easily ascertain it for
himself? Who can determine when it is, that the scales in the balance of
opinion begin to turn, and what was a greater probability in behalf of a
belief becomes a positive doubt against it?

In considering this question in its bearing upon my conduct in 1843, my
own simple answer to my great difficulty had been, _Do_ what your
present state of opinion requires in the light of duty, and let that
_doing_ tell: speak by _acts_. This I had done; my first _act_ of the
year had been in February. After three months' deliberation I had
published my retractation of the violent charges which I had made
against Rome: I could not be wrong in doing so much as this; but I did
no more at the time: I did not retract my Anglican teaching. My second
_act_ had been in September in the same year; after much sorrowful
lingering and hesitation, I had resigned my Living. I tried indeed,
before I did so, to keep Littlemore for myself, even though it was still
to remain an integral part of St. Mary's. I had given to it a Church and
a sort of Parsonage; I had made it a Parish, and I loved it; I thought
in 1843 that perhaps I need not forfeit my existing relations towards
it. I could indeed submit to become the curate at will of another, but I
hoped an arrangement was possible, by which, while I had the curacy, I
might have been my own master in serving it. I had hoped an exception
might have been made in my favour, under the circumstances; but I did
not gain my request. Perhaps I was asking what was impracticable, and it
is well for me that it was so.

These had been my two acts of the year, and I said, "I cannot be wrong
in making them; let that follow which must follow in the thoughts of the
world about me, when they see what I do." And, as time went on, they
fully answered my purpose. What I felt it a simple duty to do, did
create a general suspicion about me, without such responsibility as
would be involved in my initiating any direct act for the sake of
creating it. Then, when friends wrote me on the subject, I either did
not deny or I confessed my state of mind, according to the character and
need of their letters. Sometimes in the case of intimate friends, whom I
should otherwise have been leaving in ignorance of what others knew on
every side of them, I invited the question.

And here comes in another point for explanation. While I was fighting in
Oxford for the Anglican Church, then indeed I was very glad to make
converts, and, though I never broke away from that rule of my mind, (as
I may call it,) of which I have already spoken, of finding disciples
rather than seeking them, yet, that I made advances to others in a
special way, I have no doubt; this came to an end, however, as soon as I
fell into misgivings as to the true ground to be taken in the
controversy. For then, when I gave up my place in the Movement, I ceased
from any such proceedings: and my utmost endeavour was to tranquillize
such persons, especially those who belonged to the new school, as were
unsettled in their religious views, and, as I judged, hasty in their
conclusions. This went on till 1843; but, at that date, as soon as I
turned my face Rome-ward, I gave up, as far as ever was possible, the
thought of in any respect and in any shape acting upon others. Then I
myself was simply my own concern. How could I in any sense direct
others, who had to be guided in so momentous a matter myself? How could
I be considered in a position, even to say a word to them one way or the
other? How could I presume to unsettle them, as I was unsettled, when I
had no means of bringing them out of such unsettlement? And, if they
were unsettled already, how could I point to them a place of refuge,
when I was not sure that I should choose it for myself? My only line, my
only duty, was to keep simply to my own case. I recollected Pascal's
words, "Je mourrai seul." I deliberately put out of my thoughts all
other works and claims, and said nothing to any one, unless I was

But this brought upon me a great trouble. In the newspapers there were
continual reports about my intentions; I did not answer them; presently
strangers or friends wrote, begging to be allowed to answer them; and,
if I still kept to my resolution and said nothing, then I was thought to
be mysterious, and a prejudice was excited against me. But, what was far
worse, there were a number of tender, eager hearts, of whom I knew
nothing at all, who were watching me, wishing to think as I thought, and
to do as I did, if they could but find it out; who in consequence were
distressed, that, in so solemn a matter, they could not see what was
coming, and who heard reports about me this way or that, on a first day
and on a second; and felt the weariness of waiting, and the sickness of
delayed hope, and did not understand that I was as perplexed as they
were, and, being of more sensitive complexion of mind than myself, were
made ill by the suspense. And they too of course for the time thought me
mysterious and inexplicable. I ask their pardon as far as I was really
unkind to them. There was a gifted and deeply earnest lady, who in a
parabolical account of that time, has described both my conduct as she
felt it, and her own feelings upon it. In a singularly graphic, amusing
vision of pilgrims, who were making their way across a bleak common in
great discomfort, and who were ever warned against, yet continually
nearing, "the king's highway" on the right, she says, "All my fears and
disquiets were speedily renewed by seeing the most daring of our
leaders, (the same who had first forced his way through the palisade,
and in whose courage and sagacity we all put implicit trust,) suddenly
stop short, and declare that he would go on no further. He did not,
however, take the leap at once, but quietly sat down on the top of the
fence with his feet hanging towards the road, as if he meant to take his
time about it, and let himself down easily." I do not wonder at all that
I thus seemed so unkind to a lady, who at that time had never seen me.
We were both in trial in our different ways. I am far from denying that
I was acting selfishly both in her case and in that of others; but it
was a religious selfishness. Certainly to myself my own duty seemed
clear. They that are whole can heal others; but in my case it was,
"Physician, heal thyself." My own soul was my first concern, and it
seemed an absurdity to my reason to be converted in partnership. I
wished to go to my Lord by myself, and in my own way, or rather His way.
I had neither wish, nor, I may say, thought of taking a number with me.
Moreover, it is but the truth to say, that it had ever been an annoyance
to me to seem to be the head of a party; and that even from
fastidiousness of mind, I could not bear to find a thing done elsewhere,
simply or mainly because I did it myself, and that, from distrust of
myself, I shrank from the thought, whenever it was brought home to me,
that I was influencing others. But nothing of this could be known to the

The following three letters are written to a friend, who had every claim
upon me to be frank with him, Archdeacon Manning:--it will be seen that
I disclose the real state of my mind in proportion as he presses me.

1. "October 14, 1843. I would tell you in a few words why I have
resigned St. Mary's, as you seem to wish, were it possible to do so. But
it is most difficult to bring out in brief, or even _in extenso_, any
just view of my feelings and reasons.

"The nearest approach I can give to a general account of them is to say,
that it has been caused by the general repudiation of the view,
contained in No. 90, on the part of the Church. I could not stand
against such an unanimous expression of opinion from the Bishops,
supported, as it has been, by the concurrence, or at least silence, of
all classes in the Church, lay and clerical. If there ever was a case,
in which an individual teacher has been put aside and virtually put away
by a community, mine is one. No decency has been observed in the attacks
upon me from authority; no protests have been offered against them. It
is felt,--I am far from denying, justly felt,--that I am a foreign
material, and cannot assimilate with the Church of England.

"Even my own Bishop has said that my mode of interpreting the Articles
makes them mean _any thing or nothing_. When I heard this delivered, I
did not believe my ears. I denied to others that it was said.... Out
came the charge, and the words could not be mistaken. This astonished me
the more, because I published that Letter to him, (how unwillingly you
know,) on the understanding that _I_ was to deliver his judgment on No.
90 _instead_ of him. A year elapses, and a second and heavier judgment
came forth. I did not bargain for this,--nor did he, but the tide was
too strong for him.

"I fear that I must confess, that, in proportion as I think the English
Church is showing herself intrinsically and radically alien from
Catholic principles, so do I feel the difficulties of defending her
claims to be a branch of the Catholic Church. It seems a dream to call a
communion Catholic, when one can neither appeal to any clear statement
of Catholic doctrine in its formularies, nor interpret ambiguous
formularies by the received and living Catholic sense, whether past or
present. Men of Catholic views are too truly but a party in our Church.
I cannot deny that many other independent circumstances, which it is not
worth while entering into, have led me to the same conclusion.

"I do not say all this to every body, as you may suppose; but I do not
like to make a secret of it to you."

2. "Oct. 25, 1843. You have engaged in a dangerous correspondence; I am
deeply sorry for the pain I shall give you.

"I must tell you then frankly, (but I combat arguments which to me,
alas, are shadows,) that it is not from disappointment, irritation, or
impatience, that I have, whether rightly or wrongly, resigned St.
Mary's; but because I think the Church of Rome the Catholic Church, and
ours not part of the Catholic Church, because not in communion with
Rome; and because I feel that I could not honestly be a teacher in it
any longer.

"This thought came to me last summer four years.... I mentioned it to
two friends in the autumn.... It arose in the first instance from the
Monophysite and Donatist controversies, the former of which I was
engaged with in the course of theological study to which I had given
myself. This was at a time when no Bishop, I believe, had declared
against us[15], and when all was progress and hope. I do not think I
have ever felt disappointment or impatience, certainly not then; for I
never looked forward to the future, nor do I realize it now.

"My first effort was to write that article on the Catholicity of the
English Church; for two years it quieted me. Since the summer of 1839 I
have written little or nothing on modern controversy.... You know how
unwillingly I wrote my letter to the Bishop in which I committed myself
again, as the safest course under circumstances. The article I speak of
quieted me till the end of 1841, over the affair of No. 90, when that
wretched Jerusalem Bishopric (no personal matter) revived all my alarms.
They have increased up to this moment. At that time I told my secret to
another person in addition.

"You see then that the various ecclesiastical and quasi-ecclesiastical
acts, which have taken place in the course of the last two years and a
half, are not the _cause_ of my state of opinion, but are keen
stimulants and weighty confirmations of a conviction forced upon me,
while engaged in the _course of duty_, viz. that theological reading to
which I had given myself. And this last-mentioned circumstance is a
fact, which has never, I think, come before me till now that I write to

"It is three years since, on account of my state of opinion, I urged the
Provost in vain to let St. Mary's be separated from Littlemore; thinking
I might with a safe conscience serve the latter, though I could not
comfortably continue in so public a place as a University. This was
before No. 90.

"Finally, I have acted under advice, and that, not of my own choosing,
but what came to me in the way of duty, nor the advice of those only who
agree with me, but of near friends who differ from me.

"I have nothing to reproach myself with, as far as I see, in the matter
of impatience; i.e. practically or in conduct. And I trust that He, who
has kept me in the slow course of change hitherto, will keep me still
from hasty acts, or resolves with a doubtful conscience.

"This I am sure of, that such interposition as yours, kind as it is,
only does what _you_ would consider harm. It makes me realize my own
views to myself; it makes me see their consistency; it assures me of my
own deliberateness; it suggests to me the traces of a Providential Hand;
it takes away the pain of disclosures; it relieves me of a heavy secret.

"You may make what use of my letters you think right."

[15] I think Sumner, Bishop of Chester, must have done so already.

3. My correspondent wrote to me once more, and I replied thus: "October
31, 1843. Your letter has made my heart ache more, and caused me more
and deeper sighs than any I have had a long while, though I assure you
there is much on all sides of me to cause sighing and heartache. On all
sides:--I am quite haunted by the one dreadful whisper repeated from so
many quarters, and causing the keenest distress to friends. You know but
a part of my present trial, in knowing that I am unsettled myself.

"Since the beginning of this year I have been obliged to tell the state
of my mind to some others; but never, I think, without being in a way
obliged, as from friends writing to me as you did, or guessing how
matters stood. No one in Oxford knows it or here" [Littlemore], "but one
near friend whom I felt I could not help telling the other day. But, I
suppose, many more suspect it."

On receiving these letters, my correspondent, if I recollect rightly, at
once communicated the matter of them to Dr. Pusey, and this will enable
me to describe, as nearly as I can, the way in which he first became
aware of my changed state of opinion.

I had from the first a great difficulty in making Dr. Pusey understand
such differences of opinion as existed between himself and me. When
there was a proposal about the end of 1838 for a subscription for a
Cranmer Memorial, he wished us both to subscribe together to it. I could
not, of course, and wished him to subscribe by himself. That he would
not do; he could not bear the thought of our appearing to the world in
separate positions, in a matter of importance. And, as time went on, he
would not take any hints, which I gave him, on the subject of my growing
inclination to Rome. When I found him so determined, I often had not the
heart to go on. And then I knew, that, from affection to me, he so often
took up and threw himself into what I said, that I felt the great
responsibility I should incur, if I put things before him just as I
might view them myself. And, not knowing him so well as I did
afterwards, I feared lest I should unsettle him. And moreover, I
recollected well, how prostrated he had been with illness in 1832, and I
used always to think that the start of the Movement had given him a
fresh life. I fancied that his physical energies even depended on the
presence of a vigorous hope and bright prospects for his imagination to
feed upon; so much so, that when he was so unworthily treated by the
authorities of the place in 1843, I recollect writing to the late Mr.
Dodsworth to state my anxiety, lest, if his mind became dejected in
consequence, his health should suffer seriously also. These were
difficulties in my way; and then again, another difficulty was, that, as
we were not together under the same roof, we only saw each other at set
times; others indeed, who were coming in or out of my rooms freely, and
according to the need of the moment, knew all my thoughts easily; but
for him to know them well, formal efforts were necessary. A common
friend of ours broke it all to him in 1841, as far as matters had gone
at that time, and showed him clearly the logical conclusions which must
lie in propositions to which I had committed myself; but somehow or
other in a little while, his mind fell back into its former happy state,
and he could not bring himself to believe that he and I should not go on
pleasantly together to the end. But that affectionate dream needs must
have been broken at last; and two years afterwards, that friend to whom
I wrote the letters which I have just now inserted, set himself, as I
have said, to break it. Upon that, I too begged Dr. Pusey to tell in
private to any one he would, that I thought in the event I should leave
the Church of England. However, he would not do so; and at the end of
1844 had almost relapsed into his former thoughts about me, if I may
judge from a letter of his which I have found. Nay, at the Commemoration
of 1845, a few months before I left the Anglican Church, I think he said
about me to a friend, "I trust after all we shall keep him."

In that autumn of 1843, at the time that I spoke to Dr. Pusey, I asked
another friend also to communicate in confidence, to whom he would, the
prospect which lay before me.

To another friend, Mr. James Hope, now Mr. Hope Scott, I gave the
opportunity of knowing it, if he would, in the following Postscript to a

"While I write, I will add a word about myself. You may come near a
person or two who, owing to circumstances, know more exactly my state of
feeling than you do, though they would not tell you. Now I do not like
that you should not be aware of this, though I see no _reason_ why you
should know what they happen to know. Your wishing it would _be_ a

I had a dear and old friend, near his death; I never told him my state
of mind. Why should I unsettle that sweet calm tranquillity, when I had
nothing to offer him instead? I could not say, "Go to Rome;" else I
should have shown him the way. Yet I offered myself for his examination.
One day he led the way to my speaking out; but, rightly or wrongly, I
could not respond. My reason was, "I have no certainty on the matter
myself. To say 'I think' is to tease and to distress, not to persuade."

I wrote to him on Michaelmas Day, 1843: "As you may suppose, I have
nothing to write to you about, pleasant. I _could_ tell you some very
painful things; but it is best not to anticipate trouble, which after
all can but happen, and, for what one knows, may be averted. You are
always so kind, that sometimes, when I part with you, I am nearly moved
to tears, and it would be a relief to be so, at your kindness and at my
hardness. I think no one ever had such kind friends as I have."

The next year, January 22, I wrote to him: "Pusey has quite enough on
him, and generously takes on himself more than enough, for me to add
burdens when I am not obliged; particularly too, when I am very
conscious, that there _are_ burdens, which I am or shall be obliged to
lay upon him some time or other, whether I will or no."

And on February 21: "Half-past ten. I am just up, having a bad cold; the
like has not happened to me (except twice in January) in my memory. You
may think you have been in my thoughts, long before my rising. Of course
you are so continually, as you well know. I could not come to see you; I
am not worthy of friends. With my opinions, to the full of which I dare
not confess, I feel like a guilty person with others, though I trust I
am not so. People kindly think that I have much to bear externally,
disappointment, slander, &c. No, I have nothing to bear, but the anxiety
which I feel for my friends' anxiety for me, and their perplexity. This
is a better Ash-Wednesday than birthday present;" [his birthday was the
same day as mine; it was Ash-Wednesday that year;] "but I cannot help
writing about what is uppermost. And now, my dear B., all kindest and
best wishes to you, my oldest friend, whom I must not speak more about,
and with reference to myself, lest you should be angry." It was not in
his nature to have doubts: he used to look at me with anxiety, and
wonder what had come over me.

On Easter Monday: "All that is good and gracious descend upon you and
yours from the influences of this Blessed Season; and it will be so, (so
be it!) for what is the life of you all, as day passes after day, but a
simple endeavour to serve Him, from whom all blessing comes? Though we
are separated in place, yet this we have in common, that you are living
a calm and cheerful time, and I am enjoying the thought of you. It is
your blessing to have a clear heaven, and peace around, according to the
blessing pronounced on Benjamin[16]. So it is, my dear B., and so may it
ever be."

[16] Deut. xxxiii. 12.

He was in simple good faith. He died in September of the same year. I
had expected that his last illness would have brought light to my mind,
as to what I ought to do. It brought none. I made a note, which runs
thus: "I sobbed bitterly over his coffin, to think that he left me still
dark as to what the way of truth was, and what I ought to do in order to
please God and fulfil His will." I think I wrote to Charles Marriott to
say, that at that moment, with the thought of my friend before me, my
strong view in favour of Rome remained just what it was. On the other
hand, my firm belief that grace was to be found within the Anglican
Church remained too[17]. I wrote to another friend thus:--

[17] On this subject, vide my Third Lecture on "Anglican Difficulties,"
also Note E, _Anglican Church_.

"Sept. 16, 1844. I am full of wrong and miserable feelings, which it is
useless to detail, so grudging and sullen, when I should be thankful. Of
course, when one sees so blessed an end, and that, the termination of so
blameless a life, of one who really fed on our ordinances and got
strength from them, and sees the same continued in a whole family, the
little children finding quite a solace of their pain in the Daily
Prayer, it is impossible not to feel more at ease in our Church, as at
least a sort of Zoar, a place of refuge and temporary rest, because of
the steepness of the way. Only, may we be kept from unlawful security,
lest we have Moab and Ammon for our progeny, the enemies of Israel."

I could not continue in this state, either in the light of duty or of
reason. My difficulty was this: I had been deceived greatly once; how
could I be sure that I was not deceived a second time? I thought myself
right then; how was I to be certain that I was right now? How many years
had I thought myself sure of what I now rejected? how could I ever again
have confidence in myself? As in 1840 I listened to the rising doubt in
favour of Rome, now I listened to the waning doubt in favour of the
Anglican Church. To be certain is to know that one knows; what inward
test had I, that I should not change again, after that I had become a
Catholic? I had still apprehension of this, though I thought a time
would come, when it would depart. However, some limit ought to be put to
these vague misgivings; I must do my best and then leave it to a higher
Power to prosper it. So, at the end of 1844, I came to the resolution of
writing an Essay on Doctrinal Development; and then, if, at the end of
it, my convictions in favour of the Roman Church were not weaker, of
taking the necessary steps for admission into her fold.

By this time the state of my mind was generally known, and I made no
great secret of it. I will illustrate it by letters of mine which have
been put into my hands.

"November 16, 1844. I am going through what must be gone through; and my
trust only is that every day of pain is so much taken from the necessary
draught which must be exhausted. There is no fear (humanly speaking) of
my moving for a long time yet. This has got out without my intending it;
but it is all well. As far as I know myself, my one great distress is
the perplexity, unsettlement, alarm, scepticism, which I am causing to
so many; and the loss of kind feeling and good opinion on the part of so
many, known and unknown, who have wished well to me. And of these two
sources of pain it is the former that is the constant, urgent,
unmitigated one. I had for days a literal ache all about my heart; and
from time to time all the complaints of the Psalmist seemed to belong to

"And as far as I know myself, my one paramount reason for contemplating
a change is my deep, unvarying conviction that our Church is in schism,
and that my salvation depends on my joining the Church of Rome. I may
use _argumenta ad hominem_ to this person or that[18]; but I am not
conscious of resentment, or disgust, at any thing that has happened to
me. I have no visions whatever of hope, no schemes of action, in any
other sphere more suited to me. I have no existing sympathies with Roman
Catholics; I hardly ever, even abroad, was at one of their services; I
know none of them, I do not like what I hear of them.

"And then, how much I am giving up in so many ways! and to me sacrifices
irreparable, not only from my age, when people hate changing, but from
my especial love of old associations and the pleasures of memory. Nor am
I conscious of any feeling, enthusiastic or heroic, of pleasure in the
sacrifice; I have nothing to support me here.

"What keeps me yet is what has kept me long; a fear that I am under a
delusion; but the conviction remains firm under all circumstances, in
all frames of mind. And this most serious feeling is growing on me; viz.
that the reasons for which I believe as much as our system teaches,
_must_ lead me to believe more, and that not to believe more is to fall
back into scepticism.

"A thousand thanks for your most kind and consoling letter; though I
have not yet spoken of it, it was a great gift."

[18] Vide supr. p. 219, &c. Letter of Oct. 14, 1843, compared with that
of Oct. 25.

Shortly after I wrote to the same friend thus: "My intention is, if
nothing comes upon me, which I cannot foresee, to remain quietly _in
statu quo_ for a considerable time, trusting that my friends will kindly
remember me and my trial in their prayers. And I should give up my
fellowship some time before any thing further took place."

There was a lady, now a nun of the Visitation, to whom at this time I
wrote the following letters:--

1. "November 7, 1844. I am still where I was; I am not moving. Two
things, however, seem plain, that every one is prepared for such an
event, next, that every one expects it of me. Few, indeed, who do not
think it suitable, fewer still, who do not think it likely. However, I
do not think it either suitable or likely. I have very little reason to
doubt about the issue of things, but the when and the how are known to
Him, from whom, I trust, both the course of things and the issue come.
The expression of opinion, and the latent and habitual feeling about me,
which is on every side and among all parties, has great force. I insist
upon it, because I have a great dread of going by my own feelings, lest
they should mislead me. By one's sense of duty one must go; but external
facts support one in doing so."

2. "January 8, 1845. What am I to say in answer to your letter? I know
perfectly well, I ought to let you know more of my feelings and state of
mind than you do know. But how is that possible in a few words? Any
thing I say must be abrupt; nothing can I say which will not leave a
bewildering feeling, as needing so much to explain it, and being
isolated, and (as it were) unlocated, and not having any thing with it
to show its bearings upon other parts of the subject.

"At present, my full belief is, in accordance with your letter, that, if
there is a move in our Church, very few persons indeed will be partners
to it. I doubt whether one or two at the most among residents at Oxford.
And I don't know whether I can wish it. The state of the Roman Catholics
is at present so unsatisfactory. This I am sure of, that nothing but a
simple, direct call of duty is a warrant for any one leaving our Church;
no preference of another Church, no delight in its services, no hope of
greater religious advancement in it, no indignation, no disgust, at the
persons and things, among which we may find ourselves in the Church of
England. The simple question is, Can _I_ (it is personal, not whether
another, but can _I_) be saved in the English Church? am _I_ in safety,
were I to die to-night? Is it a mortal sin in _me_, not joining another

"P.S. I hardly see my way to concur in attendance, though occasional, in
the Roman Catholic chapel, unless a man has made up his mind pretty well
to join it eventually. Invocations are not _required_ in the Church of
Rome; somehow, I do not like using them except under the sanction of the
Church, and this makes me unwilling to admit them in members of our

3. "March 30. Now I will tell you more than any one knows except two
friends. My own convictions are as strong as I suppose they can become:
only it is so difficult to know whether it is a call of _reason_ or of
conscience. I cannot make out, if I am impelled by what seems _clear_,
or by a sense of _duty_. You can understand how painful this doubt is;
so I have waited, hoping for light, and using the words of the Psalmist,
'Show some token upon me.' But I suppose I have no right to wait for
ever for this. Then I am waiting, because friends are most considerately
bearing me in mind, and asking guidance for me; and, I trust, I should
attend to any new feelings which came upon me, should that be the effect
of their kindness. And then this waiting subserves the purpose of
preparing men's minds. I dread shocking, unsettling people. Any how, I
can't avoid giving incalculable pain. So, if I had my will, I should
like to wait till the summer of 1846, which would be a full seven years
from the time that my convictions first began to fall on me. But I don't
think I shall last so long.

"My present intention is to give up my Fellowship in October, and to
publish some work or treatise between that and Christmas. I wish people
to know _why_ I am acting, as well as _what_ I am doing; it takes off
that vague and distressing surprise, 'What _can_ have made him?'"

4. "June 1. What you tell me of yourself makes it plain that it is your
duty to remain quietly and patiently, till you see more clearly where
you are; else you are leaping in the dark."

In the early part of this year, if not before, there was an idea afloat
that my retirement from the Anglican Church was owing to my distress
that I had been so thrust aside, without any one's taking my part.
Various measures were, I believe, talked of in consequence of this
surmise. Coincidently with it appeared an exceedingly kind article about
me in a Quarterly, in its April number. The writer praised me in kind
and beautiful language far above my deserts. In the course of his
remarks, he said, speaking of me as Vicar of St. Mary's: "He had the
future race of clergy hearing him. Did he value and feel tender about,
and cling to his position?... Not at all.... No sacrifice to him
perhaps, he did not care about such things."

There was a censure implied, however covertly, in these words; and it is
alluded to in the following letter, addressed to a very intimate

"April 3, 1845.... Accept this apology, my dear Church, and forgive me.
As I say so, tears come into my eyes;--that arises from the accident of
this time, when I am giving up so much I love. Just now I have been
overset by James Mozley's article in the Remembrancer; yet really, my
dear Church, I have never for an instant had even the temptation of
repenting my leaving Oxford. The feeling of repentance has not even come
into my mind. How could it? How could I remain at St. Mary's a
hypocrite? how could I be answerable for souls, (and life so uncertain,)
with the convictions, or at least persuasions, which I had upon me? It
is indeed a responsibility to act as I am doing; and I feel His hand
heavy on me without intermission, who is all Wisdom and Love, so that my
heart and mind are tired out, just as the limbs might be from a load on
one's back. That sort of dull aching pain is mine; but my responsibility
really is nothing to what it would be, to be answerable for souls, for
confiding loving souls, in the English Church, with my convictions. My
love to Marriott, and save me the pain of sending him a line."

       *       *       *       *       *

I am now close upon the date of my reception into the Catholic Church;
at the beginning of the year a letter had been addressed to me by a very
dear friend, now no more, Charles Marriott. I quote some sentences from
it, for the love which I bear him and the value that I set on his good

"January 15, 1845. You know me well enough to be aware, that I never see
through any thing at first. Your letter to Badeley casts a gloom over
the future, which you can understand, if you have understood me, as I
believe you have. But I may speak out at once, of what I see and feel at
once, and doubt not that I shall ever feel: that your whole conduct
towards the Church of England and towards us, who have striven and are
still striving to seek after God for ourselves, and to revive true
religion among others, under her authority and guidance, has been
generous and considerate, and, were that word appropriate, dutiful, to a
degree that I could scarcely have conceived possible, more unsparing of
self than I should have thought nature could sustain. I have felt with
pain every link that you have severed, and I have asked no questions,
because I felt that you ought to measure the disclosure of your thoughts
according to the occasion, and the capacity of those to whom you spoke.
I write in haste, in the midst of engagements engrossing in themselves,
but partly made tasteless, partly embittered by what I have heard; but I
am willing to trust even you, whom I love best on earth, in God's Hand,
in the earnest prayer that you may be so employed as is best for the
Holy Catholic Church."

In July, a Bishop thought it worth while to give out to the world that
"the adherents of Mr. Newman are few in number. A short time will now
probably suffice to prove this fact. It is well known that he is
preparing for secession; and, when that event takes place, it will be
seen how few will go with him."

I had begun my Essay on the Development of Doctrine in the beginning of
1845, and I was hard at it all through the year till October. As I
advanced, my difficulties so cleared away that I ceased to speak of "the
Roman Catholics," and boldly called them Catholics. Before I got to the
end, I resolved to be received, and the book remains in the state in
which it was then, unfinished.

One of my friends at Littlemore had been received into the Church on
Michaelmas Day, at the Passionist House at Aston, near Stone, by Father
Dominic, the Superior. At the beginning of October the latter was
passing through London to Belgium; and, as I was in some perplexity what
steps to take for being received myself, I assented to the proposition
made to me that the good priest should take Littlemore in his way, with
a view to his doing for me the same charitable service as he had done to
my friend.

On October the 8th I wrote to a number of friends the following

"Littlemore, October 8th, 1845. I am this night expecting Father
Dominic, the Passionist, who, from his youth, has been led to have
distinct and direct thoughts, first of the countries of the North, then
of England. After thirty years' (almost) waiting, he was without his own
act sent here. But he has had little to do with conversions. I saw him
here for a few minutes on St. John Baptist's day last year.

"He is a simple, holy man; and withal gifted with remarkable powers. He
does not know of my intention; but I mean to ask of him admission into
the One Fold of Christ....

"I have so many letters to write, that this must do for all who choose
to ask about me. With my best love to dear Charles Marriott, who is over
your head, &c., &c.

"P.S. This will not go till all is over. Of course it requires no

       *       *       *       *       *

For a while after my reception, I proposed to betake myself to some
secular calling. I wrote thus in answer to a very gracious letter of
congratulation sent me by Cardinal Acton:--

"Nov. 25, 1845. I hope you will have anticipated, before I express it,
the great gratification which I received from your Eminence's letter.
That gratification, however, was tempered by the apprehension, that kind
and anxious well-wishers at a distance attach more importance to my step
than really belongs to it. To me indeed personally it is of course an
inestimable gain; but persons and things look great at a distance, which
are not so when seen close; and, did your Eminence know me, you would
see that I was one, about whom there has been far more talk for good and
bad than he deserves, and about whose movements far more expectation has
been raised than the event will justify.

"As I never, I do trust, aimed at any thing else than obedience to my
own sense of right, and have been magnified into the leader of a party
without my wishing it or acting as such, so now, much as I may wish to
the contrary, and earnestly as I may labour (as is my duty) to minister
in a humble way to the Catholic Church, yet my powers will, I fear,
disappoint the expectations of both my own friends, and of those who
pray for the peace of Jerusalem.

"If I might ask of your Eminence a favour, it is that you would kindly
moderate those anticipations. Would it were in my power to do, what I do
not aspire to do! At present certainly I cannot look forward to the
future, and, though it would be a good work if I could persuade others
to do as I have done, yet it seems as if I had quite enough to do in
thinking of myself."

Soon, Dr. Wiseman, in whose Vicariate Oxford lay, called me to Oscott;
and I went there with others; afterwards he sent me to Rome, and finally
placed me in Birmingham.

I wrote to a friend:--

"January 20, 1846. You may think how lonely I am. 'Obliviscere populum
tuum et domum patris tui,' has been in my ears for the last twelve
hours. I realize more that we are leaving Littlemore, and it is like
going on the open sea."

I left Oxford for good on Monday, February 23, 1846. On the Saturday and
Sunday before, I was in my house at Littlemore simply by myself, as I
had been for the first day or two when I had originally taken possession
of it. I slept on Sunday night at my dear friend's, Mr. Johnson's, at
the Observatory. Various friends came to see the last of me; Mr.
Copeland, Mr. Church, Mr. Buckle, Mr. Pattison, and Mr. Lewis. Dr. Pusey
too came up to take leave of me; and I called on Dr. Ogle, one of my
very oldest friends, for he was my private Tutor, when I was an
Undergraduate. In him I took leave of my first College, Trinity, which
was so dear to me, and which held on its foundation so many who had been
kind to me both when I was a boy, and all through my Oxford life.
Trinity had never been unkind to me. There used to be much snap-dragon
growing on the walls opposite my freshman's rooms there, and I had for
years taken it as the emblem of my own perpetual residence even unto
death in my University.

On the morning of the 23rd I left the Observatory. I have never seen
Oxford since, excepting its spires, as they are seen from the

[19] At length I revisited Oxford on February 26th, 1878, after an
absence of just 32 years. Vide Additional Note at the end of the volume.



From the time that I became a Catholic, of course I have no further
history of my religious opinions to narrate. In saying this, I do not
mean to say that my mind has been idle, or that I have given up thinking
on theological subjects; but that I have had no variations to record,
and have had no anxiety of heart whatever. I have been in perfect peace
and contentment; I never have had one doubt. I was not conscious to
myself, on my conversion, of any change, intellectual or moral, wrought
in my mind. I was not conscious of firmer faith in the fundamental
truths of Revelation, or of more self-command; I had not more fervour;
but it was like coming into port after a rough sea; and my happiness on
that score remains to this day without interruption.

Nor had I any trouble about receiving those additional articles, which
are not found in the Anglican Creed. Some of them I believed already,
but not any one of them was a trial to me. I made a profession of them
upon my reception with the greatest ease, and I have the same ease in
believing them now. I am far of course from denying that every article
of the Christian Creed, whether as held by Catholics or by Protestants,
is beset with intellectual difficulties; and it is simple fact, that,
for myself, I cannot answer those difficulties. Many persons are very
sensitive of the difficulties of Religion; I am as sensitive of them as
any one; but I have never been able to see a connexion between
apprehending those difficulties, however keenly, and multiplying them to
any extent, and on the other hand doubting the doctrines to which they
are attached. Ten thousand difficulties do not make one doubt, as I
understand the subject; difficulty and doubt are incommensurate. There
of course may be difficulties in the evidence; but I am speaking of
difficulties intrinsic to the doctrines themselves, or to their
relations with each other. A man may be annoyed that he cannot work out
a mathematical problem, of which the answer is or is not given to him,
without doubting that it admits of an answer, or that a certain
particular answer is the true one. Of all points of faith, the being of
a God is, to my own apprehension, encompassed with most difficulty, and
yet borne in upon our minds with most power.

People say that the doctrine of Transubstantiation is difficult to
believe; I did not believe the doctrine till I was a Catholic. I had no
difficulty in believing it, as soon as I believed that the Catholic
Roman Church was the oracle of God, and that she had declared this
doctrine to be part of the original revelation. It is difficult,
impossible, to imagine, I grant;--but how is it difficult to believe?
Yet Macaulay thought it so difficult to believe, that he had need of a
believer in it of talents as eminent as Sir Thomas More, before he could
bring himself to conceive that the Catholics of an enlightened age could
resist "the overwhelming force of the argument against it." "Sir Thomas
More," he says, "is one of the choice specimens of wisdom and virtue;
and the doctrine of transubstantiation is a kind of proof charge. A
faith which stands that test, will stand any test." But for myself, I
cannot indeed prove it, I cannot tell _how_ it is; but I say, "Why
should it not be? What's to hinder it? What do I know of substance or
matter? just as much as the greatest philosophers, and that is nothing
at all;"--so much is this the case, that there is a rising school of
philosophy now, which considers phenomena to constitute the whole of our
knowledge in physics. The Catholic doctrine leaves phenomena alone. It
does not say that the phenomena go; on the contrary, it says that they
remain; nor does it say that the same phenomena are in several places at
once. It deals with what no one on earth knows any thing about, the
material substances themselves. And, in like manner, of that majestic
Article of the Anglican as well as of the Catholic Creed,--the doctrine
of the Trinity in Unity. What do I know of the Essence of the Divine
Being? I know that my abstract idea of three is simply incompatible with
my idea of one; but when I come to the question of concrete fact, I have
no means of proving that there is not a sense in which one and three can
equally be predicated of the Incommunicable God.

But I am going to take upon myself the responsibility of more than the
mere Creed of the Church; as the parties accusing me are determined I
shall do. They say, that now, in that I am a Catholic, though I may not
have offences of my own against honesty to answer for, yet, at least, I
am answerable for the offences of others, of my co-religionists, of my
brother priests, of the Church herself. I am quite willing to accept the
responsibility; and, as I have been able, as I trust, by means of a few
words, to dissipate, in the minds of all those who do not begin with
disbelieving me, the suspicion with which so many Protestants start, in
forming their judgment of Catholics, viz. that our Creed is actually set
up in inevitable superstition and hypocrisy, as the original sin of
Catholicism; so now I will proceed, as before, identifying myself with
the Church and vindicating it,--not of course denying the enormous mass
of sin and error which exists of necessity in that world-wide multiform
Communion,--but going to the proof of this one point, that its system is
in no sense dishonest, and that therefore the upholders and teachers of
that system, as such, have a claim to be acquitted in their own persons
of that odious imputation.

       *       *       *       *       *

Starting then with the being of a God, (which, as I have said, is as
certain to me as the certainty of my own existence, though when I try to
put the grounds of that certainty into logical shape I find a difficulty
in doing so in mood and figure to my satisfaction,) I look out of myself
into the world of men, and there I see a sight which fills me with
unspeakable distress. The world seems simply to give the lie to that
great truth, of which my whole being is so full; and the effect upon me
is, in consequence, as a matter of necessity, as confusing as if it
denied that I am in existence myself. If I looked into a mirror, and did
not see my face, I should have the sort of feeling which actually comes
upon me, when I look into this living busy world, and see no reflexion
of its Creator. This is, to me, one of those great difficulties of this
absolute primary truth, to which I referred just now. Were it not for
this voice, speaking so clearly in my conscience and my heart, I should
be an atheist, or a pantheist, or a polytheist when I looked into the
world. I am speaking for myself only; and I am far from denying the real
force of the arguments in proof of a God, drawn from the general facts
of human society and the course of history, but these do not warm me or
enlighten me; they do not take away the winter of my desolation, or make
the buds unfold and the leaves grow within me, and my moral being
rejoice. The sight of the world is nothing else than the prophet's
scroll, full of "lamentations, and mourning, and woe."

To consider the world in its length and breadth, its various history,
the many races of man, their starts, their fortunes, their mutual
alienation, their conflicts; and then their ways, habits, governments,
forms of worship; their enterprises, their aimless courses, their random
achievements and acquirements, the impotent conclusion of long-standing
facts, the tokens so faint and broken of a superintending design, the
blind evolution of what turn out to be great powers or truths, the
progress of things, as if from unreasoning elements, not towards final
causes, the greatness and littleness of man, his far-reaching aims, his
short duration, the curtain hung over his futurity, the disappointments
of life, the defeat of good, the success of evil, physical pain, mental
anguish, the prevalence and intensity of sin, the pervading idolatries,
the corruptions, the dreary hopeless irreligion, that condition of the
whole race, so fearfully yet exactly described in the Apostle's words,
"having no hope and without God in the world,"--all this is a vision to
dizzy and appal; and inflicts upon the mind the sense of a profound
mystery, which is absolutely beyond human solution.

What shall be said to this heart-piercing, reason-bewildering fact? I
can only answer, that either there is no Creator, or this living society
of men is in a true sense discarded from His presence. Did I see a boy
of good make and mind, with the tokens on him of a refined nature, cast
upon the world without provision, unable to say whence he came, his
birth-place or his family connexions, I should conclude that there was
some mystery connected with his history, and that he was one, of whom,
from one cause or other, his parents were ashamed. Thus only should I be
able to account for the contrast between the promise and the condition
of his being. And so I argue about the world;--_if_ there be a God,
_since_ there is a God, the human race is implicated in some terrible
aboriginal calamity. It is out of joint with the purposes of its
Creator. This is a fact, a fact as true as the fact of its existence;
and thus the doctrine of what is theologically called original sin
becomes to me almost as certain as that the world exists, and as the
existence of God.

And now, supposing it were the blessed and loving will of the Creator to
interfere in this anarchical condition of things, what are we to suppose
would be the methods which might be necessarily or naturally involved in
His purpose of mercy? Since the world is in so abnormal a state, surely
it would be no surprise to me, if the interposition were of necessity
equally extraordinary--or what is called miraculous. But that subject
does not directly come into the scope of my present remarks. Miracles as
evidence, involve a process of reason, or an argument; and of course I
am thinking of some mode of interference which does not immediately run
into argument. I am rather asking what must be the face-to-face
antagonist, by which to withstand and baffle the fierce energy of
passion and the all-corroding, all-dissolving scepticism of the
intellect in religious inquiries? I have no intention at all of denying,
that truth is the real object of our reason, and that, if it does not
attain to truth, either the premiss or the process is in fault; but I am
not speaking here of right reason, but of reason as it acts in fact and
concretely in fallen man. I know that even the unaided reason, when
correctly exercised, leads to a belief in God, in the immortality of the
soul, and in a future retribution; but I am considering the faculty of
reason actually and historically; and in this point of view, I do not
think I am wrong in saying that its tendency is towards a simple
unbelief in matters of religion. No truth, however sacred, can stand
against it, in the long run; and hence it is that in the pagan world,
when our Lord came, the last traces of the religious knowledge of former
times were all but disappearing from those portions of the world in
which the intellect had been active and had had a career.

And in these latter days, in like manner, outside the Catholic Church
things are tending,--with far greater rapidity than in that old time
from the circumstance of the age,--to atheism in one shape or other.
What a scene, what a prospect, does the whole of Europe present at this
day! and not only Europe, but every government and every civilization
through the world, which is under the influence of the European mind!
Especially, for it most concerns us, how sorrowful, in the view of
religion, even taken in its most elementary, most attenuated form, is
the spectacle presented to us by the educated intellect of England,
France, and Germany! Lovers of their country and of their race,
religious men, external to the Catholic Church, have attempted various
expedients to arrest fierce wilful human nature in its onward course,
and to bring it into subjection. The necessity of some form of religion
for the interests of humanity, has been generally acknowledged: but
where was the concrete representative of things invisible, which would
have the force and the toughness necessary to be a breakwater against
the deluge? Three centuries ago the establishment of religion, material,
legal, and social, was generally adopted as the best expedient for the
purpose, in those countries which separated from the Catholic Church;
and for a long time it was successful; but now the crevices of those
establishments are admitting the enemy. Thirty years ago, education was
relied upon: ten years ago there was a hope that wars would cease for
ever, under the influence of commercial enterprise and the reign of the
useful and fine arts; but will any one venture to say that there is any
thing any where on this earth, which will afford a fulcrum for us,
whereby to keep the earth from moving onwards?

The judgment, which experience passes whether on establishments or on
education, as a means of maintaining religious truth in this anarchical
world, must be extended even to Scripture, though Scripture be divine.
Experience proves surely that the Bible does not answer a purpose for
which it was never intended. It may be accidentally the means of the
conversion of individuals; but a book, after all, cannot make a stand
against the wild living intellect of man, and in this day it begins to
testify, as regards its own structure and contents, to the power of that
universal solvent, which is so successfully acting upon religious

Supposing then it to be the Will of the Creator to interfere in human
affairs, and to make provisions for retaining in the world a knowledge
of Himself, so definite and distinct as to be proof against the energy
of human scepticism, in such a case,--I am far from saying that there
was no other way,--but there is nothing to surprise the mind, if He
should think fit to introduce a power into the world, invested with the
prerogative of infallibility in religious matters. Such a provision
would be a direct, immediate, active, and prompt means of withstanding
the difficulty; it would be an instrument suited to the need; and, when
I find that this is the very claim of the Catholic Church, not only do I
feel no difficulty in admitting the idea, but there is a fitness in it,
which recommends it to my mind. And thus I am brought to speak of the
Church's infallibility, as a provision, adapted by the mercy of the
Creator, to preserve religion in the world, and to restrain that freedom
of thought, which of course in itself is one of the greatest of our
natural gifts, and to rescue it from its own suicidal excesses. And let
it be observed that, neither here nor in what follows, shall I have
occasion to speak directly of Revelation in its subject-matter, but in
reference to the sanction which it gives to truths which may be known
independently of it,--as it bears upon the defence of natural religion.
I say, that a power, possessed of infallibility in religious teaching,
is happily adapted to be a working instrument, in the course of human
affairs, for smiting hard and throwing back the immense energy of the
aggressive, capricious, untrustworthy intellect:--and in saying this, as
in the other things that I have to say, it must still be recollected
that I am all along bearing in mind my main purpose, which is a defence
of myself.

I am defending myself here from a plausible charge brought against
Catholics, as will be seen better as I proceed. The charge is
this:--that I, as a Catholic, not only make profession to hold doctrines
which I cannot possibly believe in my heart, but that I also believe in
the existence of a power on earth, which at its own will imposes upon
men any new set of _credenda_, when it pleases, by a claim to
infallibility; in consequence, that my own thoughts are not my own
property; that I cannot tell that to-morrow I may not have to give up
what I hold to-day, and that the necessary effect of such a condition of
mind must be a degrading bondage, or a bitter inward rebellion relieving
itself in secret infidelity, or the necessity of ignoring the whole
subject of religion in a sort of disgust, and of mechanically saying
every thing that the Church says, and leaving to others the defence of
it. As then I have above spoken of the relation of my mind towards the
Catholic Creed, so now I shall speak of the attitude which it takes up
in the view of the Church's infallibility.

And first, the initial doctrine of the infallible teacher must be an
emphatic protest against the existing state of mankind. Man had rebelled
against his Maker. It was this that caused the divine interposition: and
to proclaim it must be the first act of the divinely-accredited
messenger. The Church must denounce rebellion as of all possible evils
the greatest. She must have no terms with it; if she would be true to
her Master, she must ban and anathematize it. This is the meaning of a
statement of mine which has furnished matter for one of those special
accusations to which I am at present replying: I have, however, no fault
at all to confess in regard to it; I have nothing to withdraw, and in
consequence I here deliberately repeat it. I said, "The Catholic Church
holds it better for the sun and moon to drop from heaven, for the earth
to fail, and for all the many millions on it to die of starvation in
extremest agony, as far as temporal affliction goes, than that one soul,
I will not say, should be lost, but should commit one single venial sin,
should tell one wilful untruth, or should steal one poor farthing
without excuse." I think the principle here enunciated to be the mere
preamble in the formal credentials of the Catholic Church, as an Act of
Parliament might begin with a "_Whereas_." It is because of the
intensity of the evil which has possession of mankind, that a suitable
antagonist has been provided against it; and the initial act of that
divinely-commissioned power is of course to deliver her challenge and to
defy the enemy. Such a preamble then gives a meaning to her position in
the world, and an interpretation to her whole course of teaching and

In like manner she has ever put forth, with most energetic distinctness,
those other great elementary truths, which either are an explanation of
her mission or give a character to her work. She does not teach that
human nature is irreclaimable, else wherefore should she be sent? not,
that it is to be shattered and reversed, but to be extricated, purified,
and restored; not, that it is a mere mass of hopeless evil, but that it
has the promise upon it of great things, and even now, in its present
state of disorder and excess, has a virtue and a praise proper to
itself. But in the next place she knows and she preaches that such a
restoration, as she aims at effecting in it, must be brought about, not
simply through certain outward provisions of preaching and teaching,
even though they be her own, but from an inward spiritual power or grace
imparted directly from above, and of which she is the channel. She has
it in charge to rescue human nature from its misery, but not simply by
restoring it on its own level, but by lifting it up to a higher level
than its own. She recognizes in it real moral excellence though
degraded, but she cannot set it free from earth except by exalting it
towards heaven. It was for this end that a renovating grace was put into
her hands; and therefore from the nature of the gift, as well as from
the reasonableness of the case, she goes on, as a further point, to
insist, that all true conversion must begin with the first springs of
thought, and to teach that each individual man must be in his own person
one whole and perfect temple of God, while he is also one of the living
stones which build up a visible religious community. And thus the
distinctions between nature and grace, and between outward and inward
religion, become two further articles in what I have called the preamble
of her divine commission.

Such truths as these she vigorously reiterates, and pertinaciously
inflicts upon mankind; as to such she observes no half-measures, no
economical reserve, no delicacy or prudence. "Ye must be born again," is
the simple, direct form of words which she uses after her Divine Master:
"your whole nature must be re-born; your passions, and your affections,
and your aims, and your conscience, and your will, must all be bathed in
a new element, and reconsecrated to your Maker,--and, the last not the
least, your intellect." It was for repeating these points of her
teaching in my own way, that certain passages of one of my Volumes have
been brought into the general accusation which has been made against my
religious opinions. The writer has said that I was demented if I
believed, and unprincipled if I did not believe, in my own statement,
that a lazy, ragged, filthy, story-telling beggar-woman, if chaste,
sober, cheerful, and religious, had a prospect of heaven, such as was
absolutely closed to an accomplished statesman, or lawyer, or noble, be
he ever so just, upright, generous, honourable, and conscientious,
unless he had also some portion of the divine Christian graces;--yet I
should have thought myself defended from criticism by the words which
our Lord used to the chief priests, "The publicans and harlots go into
the kingdom of God before you." And I was subjected again to the same
alternative of imputations, for having ventured to say that consent to
an unchaste wish was indefinitely more heinous than any lie viewed apart
from its causes, its motives, and its consequences: though a lie, viewed
under the limitation of these conditions, is a random utterance, an
almost outward act, not directly from the heart, however disgraceful and
despicable it may be, however prejudicial to the social contract,
however deserving of public reprobation; whereas we have the express
words of our Lord to the doctrine that "whoso looketh on a woman to lust
after her, hath committed adultery with her already in his heart." On
the strength of these texts, I have surely as much right to believe in
these doctrines which have caused so much surprise, as to believe in
original sin, or that there is a supernatural revelation, or that a
Divine Person suffered, or that punishment is eternal.

Passing now from what I have called the preamble of that grant of power,
which is made to the Church, to that power itself, Infallibility, I
premise two brief remarks:--1. on the one hand, I am not here
determining any thing about the essential seat of that power, because
that is a question doctrinal, not historical and practical; 2. nor, on
the other hand, am I extending the direct subject-matter, over which
that power of Infallibility has jurisdiction, beyond religious
opinion:--and now as to the power itself.

This power, viewed in its fulness, is as tremendous as the giant evil
which has called for it. It claims, when brought into exercise but in
the legitimate manner, for otherwise of course it is but quiescent, to
know for certain the very meaning of every portion of that Divine
Message in detail, which was committed by our Lord to His Apostles. It
claims to know its own limits, and to decide what it can determine
absolutely and what it cannot. It claims, moreover, to have a hold upon
statements not directly religious, so far as this,--to determine whether
they indirectly relate to religion, and, according to its own definitive
judgment, to pronounce whether or not, in a particular case, they are
simply consistent with revealed truth. It claims to decide
magisterially, whether as within its own province or not, that such and
such statements are or are not prejudicial to the _Depositum_ of faith,
in their spirit or in their consequences, and to allow them, or condemn
and forbid them, accordingly. It claims to impose silence at will on any
matters, or controversies, of doctrine, which on its own _ipse dixit_,
it pronounces to be dangerous, or inexpedient, or inopportune. It claims
that, whatever may be the judgment of Catholics upon such acts, these
acts should be received by them with those outward marks of reverence,
submission, and loyalty, which Englishmen, for instance, pay to the
presence of their sovereign, without expressing any criticism on them on
the ground that in their matter they are inexpedient, or in their manner
violent or harsh. And lastly, it claims to have the right of inflicting
spiritual punishment, of cutting off from the ordinary channels of the
divine life, and of simply excommunicating, those who refuse to submit
themselves to its formal declarations. Such is the infallibility lodged
in the Catholic Church, viewed in the concrete, as clothed and
surrounded by the appendages of its high sovereignty: it is, to repeat
what I said above, a supereminent prodigious power sent upon earth to
encounter and master a giant evil.

And now, having thus described it, I profess my own absolute submission
to its claim. I believe the whole revealed dogma as taught by the
Apostles, as committed by the Apostles to the Church; and as declared by
the Church to me. I receive it, as it is infallibly interpreted by the
authority to whom it is thus committed, and (implicitly) as it shall be,
in like manner, further interpreted by that same authority till the end
of time. I submit, moreover, to the universally received traditions of
the Church, in which lies the matter of those new dogmatic definitions
which are from time to time made, and which in all times are the
clothing and the illustration of the Catholic dogma as already defined.
And I submit myself to those other decisions of the Holy See,
theological or not, through the organs which it has itself appointed,
which, waiving the question of their infallibility, on the lowest ground
come to me with a claim to be accepted and obeyed. Also, I consider
that, gradually and in the course of ages, Catholic inquiry has taken
certain definite shapes, and has thrown itself into the form of a
science, with a method and a phraseology of its own, under the
intellectual handling of great minds, such as St. Athanasius, St.
Augustine, and St. Thomas; and I feel no temptation at all to break in
pieces the great legacy of thought thus committed to us for these latter

All this being considered as the profession which I make _ex animo_, as
for myself, so also on the part of the Catholic body, as far as I know
it, it will at first sight be said that the restless intellect of our
common humanity is utterly weighed down, to the repression of all
independent effort and action whatever, so that, if this is to be the
mode of bringing it into order, it is brought into order only to be
destroyed. But this is far from the result, far from what I conceive to
be the intention of that high Providence who has provided a great remedy
for a great evil,--far from borne out by the history of the conflict
between Infallibility and Reason in the past, and the prospect of it in
the future. The energy of the human intellect "does from opposition
grow;" it thrives and is joyous, with a tough elastic strength, under
the terrible blows of the divinely-fashioned weapon, and is never so
much itself as when it has lately been overthrown. It is the custom with
Protestant writers to consider that, whereas there are two great
principles in action in the history of religion, Authority and Private
Judgment, they have all the Private Judgment to themselves, and we have
the full inheritance and the superincumbent oppression of Authority. But
this is not so; it is the vast Catholic body itself, and it only, which
affords an arena for both combatants in that awful, never-dying duel. It
is necessary for the very life of religion, viewed in its large
operations and its history, that the warfare should be incessantly
carried on. Every exercise of Infallibility is brought out into act by
an intense and varied operation of the Reason, both as its ally and as
its opponent, and provokes again, when it has done its work, a re-action
of Reason against it; and, as in a civil polity the State exists and
endures by means of the rivalry and collision, the encroachments and
defeats of its constituent parts, so in like manner Catholic Christendom
is no simple exhibition of religious absolutism, but presents a
continuous picture of Authority and Private Judgment alternately
advancing and retreating as the ebb and flow of the tide;--it is a vast
assemblage of human beings with wilful intellects and wild passions,
brought together into one by the beauty and the Majesty of a Superhuman
Power,--into what may be called a large reformatory or training-school,
not as if into a hospital or into a prison, not in order to be sent to
bed, not to be buried alive, but (if I may change my metaphor) brought
together as if into some moral factory, for the melting, refining, and
moulding, by an incessant, noisy process, of the raw material of human
nature, so excellent, so dangerous, so capable of divine purposes.

St. Paul says in one place that his Apostolical power is given him to
edification, and not to destruction. There can be no better account of
the Infallibility of the Church. It is a supply for a need, and it does
not go beyond that need. Its object is, and its effect also, not to
enfeeble the freedom or vigour of human thought in religious
speculation, but to resist and control its extravagance. What have been
its great works? All of them in the distinct province of theology:--to
put down Arianism, Eutychianism, Pelagianism, Manichæism, Lutheranism,
Jansenism. Such is the broad result of its action in the past;--and now
as to the securities which are given us that so it ever will act in time
to come.

First, Infallibility cannot act outside of a definite circle of thought,
and it must in all its decisions, or _definitions_, as they are called,
profess to be keeping within it. The great truths of the moral law, of
natural religion, and of Apostolical faith, are both its boundary and
its foundation. It must not go beyond them, and it must ever appeal to
them. Both its subject-matter, and its articles in that subject-matter,
are fixed. And it must ever profess to be guided by Scripture and by
tradition. It must refer to the particular Apostolic truth which it is
enforcing, or (what is called) _defining_. Nothing, then, can be
presented to me, in time to come, as part of the faith, but what I ought
already to have received, and hitherto have been kept from receiving,
(if so,) merely because it has not been brought home to me. Nothing can
be imposed upon me different in kind from what I hold already,--much
less contrary to it. The new truth which is promulgated, if it is to be
called new, must be at least homogeneous, cognate, implicit, viewed
relatively to the old truth. It must be what I may even have guessed, or
wished, to be included in the Apostolic revelation; and at least it will
be of such a character, that my thoughts readily concur in it or
coalesce with it, as soon as I hear it. Perhaps I and others actually
have always believed it, and the only question which is now decided in
my behalf, is, that I have henceforth the satisfaction of having to
believe, that I have only been holding all along what the Apostles held
before me.

Let me take the doctrine which Protestants consider our greatest
difficulty, that of the Immaculate Conception. Here I entreat the reader
to recollect my main drift, which is this. I have no difficulty in
receiving the doctrine; and that, because it so intimately harmonizes
with that circle of recognized dogmatic truths, into which it has been
recently received;--but if _I_ have no difficulty, why may not another
have no difficulty also? why may not a hundred? a thousand? Now I am
sure that Catholics in general have not any intellectual difficulty at
all on the subject of the Immaculate Conception; and that there is no
reason why they should. Priests have no difficulty. You tell me that
they _ought_ to have a difficulty;--but they have not. Be large-minded
enough to believe, that men may reason and feel very differently from
yourselves; how is it that men, when left to themselves, fall into such
various forms of religion, except that there are various types of mind
among them, very distinct from each other? From my testimony then about
myself, if you believe it, judge of others also who are Catholics: we do
not find the difficulties which you do in the doctrines which we hold;
we have no intellectual difficulty in that doctrine in particular, which
you call a novelty of this day. We priests need not be hypocrites,
though we be called upon to believe in the Immaculate Conception. To
that large class of minds, who believe in Christianity after our
manner,--in the particular temper, spirit, and light, (whatever word is
used,) in which Catholics believe it,--there is no burden at all in
holding that the Blessed Virgin was conceived without original sin;
indeed, it is a simple fact to say, that Catholics have not come to
believe it because it is defined, but that it was defined because they
believed it.

So far from the definition in 1854 being a tyrannical infliction on the
Catholic world, it was received every where on its promulgation with the
greatest enthusiasm. It was in consequence of the unanimous petition,
presented from all parts of the Church to the Holy See, in behalf of an
_ex cathedrâ_ declaration that the doctrine was Apostolic, that it was
declared so to be. I never heard of one Catholic having difficulties in
receiving the doctrine, whose faith on other grounds was not already
suspicious. Of course there were grave and good men, who were made
anxious by the doubt whether it could be formally proved to be
Apostolical either by Scripture or tradition, and who accordingly,
though believing it themselves, did not see how it could be defined by
authority and imposed upon all Catholics as a matter of faith; but this
is another matter. The point in question is, whether the doctrine is a
burden. I believe it to be none. So far from it being so, I sincerely
think that St. Bernard and St. Thomas, who scrupled at it in their day,
had they lived into this, would have rejoiced to accept it for its own
sake. Their difficulty, as I view it, consisted in matters of words,
ideas, and arguments. They thought the doctrine inconsistent with other
doctrines; and those who defended it in that age had not that precision
in their view of it, which has been attained by means of the long
disputes of the centuries which followed. And in this want of precision
lay the difference of opinion, and the controversy.

Now the instance which I have been taking suggests another remark; the
number of those (so called) new doctrines will not oppress us, if it
takes eight centuries to promulgate even one of them. Such is about the
length of time through which the preparation has been carried on for the
definition of the Immaculate Conception. This of course is an
extraordinary case; but it is difficult to say what is ordinary,
considering how few are the formal occasions on which the voice of
Infallibility has been solemnly lifted up. It is to the Pope in
Ecumenical Council that we look, as to the normal seat of Infallibility:
now there have been only eighteen such Councils since Christianity
was,--an average of one to a century,--and of these Councils some passed
no doctrinal decree at all, others were employed on only one, and many
of them were concerned with only elementary points of the Creed. The
Council of Trent embraced a large field of doctrine certainly; but I
should apply to its Canons a remark contained in that University Sermon
of mine, which has been so ignorantly criticized in the Pamphlet which
has been the occasion of this Volume;--I there have said that the
various verses of the Athanasian Creed are only repetitions in various
shapes of one and the same idea; and in like manner, the Tridentine
Decrees are not isolated from each other, but are occupied in bringing
out in detail, by a number of separate declarations, as if into bodily
form, a few necessary truths. I should make the same remark on the
various theological censures, promulgated by Popes, which the Church has
received, and on their dogmatic decisions generally. I own that at first
sight those decisions seem from their number to be a greater burden on
the faith of individuals than are the Canons of Councils; still I do not
believe that in matter of fact they are so at all, and I give this
reason for it:--it is not that a Catholic, layman or priest, is
indifferent to the subject, or, from a sort of recklessness, will accept
any thing that is placed before him, or is willing, like a lawyer, to
speak according to his brief, but that in such condemnations the Holy
See is engaged, for the most part, in repudiating one or two great lines
of error, such as Lutheranism or Jansenism, principally ethical not
doctrinal, which are divergent from the Catholic mind, and that it is
but expressing what any good Catholic, of fair abilities, though
unlearned, would say himself, from common and sound sense, if the matter
could be put before him.

Now I will go on in fairness to say what I think _is_ the great trial to
the Reason, when confronted with that august prerogative of the Catholic
Church, of which I have been speaking. I enlarged just now upon the
concrete shape and circumstances, under which pure infallible authority
presents itself to the Catholic. That authority has the prerogative of
an indirect jurisdiction on subject-matters which lie beyond its own
proper limits, and it most reasonably has such a jurisdiction. It could
not act in its own province, unless it had a right to act out of it. It
could not properly defend religious truth, without claiming for that
truth what may be called its _pom[oe]ria_; or, to take another
illustration, without acting as we act, as a nation, in claiming as our
own, not only the land on which we live, but what are called British
waters. The Catholic Church claims, not only to judge infallibly on
religious questions, but to animadvert on opinions in secular matters
which bear upon religion, on matters of philosophy, of science, of
literature, of history, and it demands our submission to her claim. It
claims to censure books, to silence authors, and to forbid discussions.
In this province, taken as a whole, it does not so much speak
doctrinally, as enforce measures of discipline. It must of course be
obeyed without a word, and perhaps in process of time it will tacitly
recede from its own injunctions. In such cases the question of faith
does not come in at all; for what is matter of faith is true for all
times, and never can be unsaid. Nor does it at all follow, because there
is a gift of infallibility in the Catholic Church, that therefore the
parties who are in possession of it are in all their proceedings
infallible. "O, it is excellent," says the poet, "to have a giant's
strength, but tyrannous, to use it like a giant." I think history
supplies us with instances in the Church, where legitimate power has
been harshly used. To make such admission is no more than saying that
the divine treasure, in the words of the Apostle, is "in earthen
vessels;" nor does it follow that the substance of the acts of the
ruling power is not right and expedient, because its manner may have
been faulty. Such high authorities act by means of instruments; we know
how such instruments claim for themselves the name of their principals,
who thus get the credit of faults which really are not theirs. But
granting all this to an extent greater than can with any show of reason
be imputed to the ruling power in the Church, what difficulty is there
in the fact of this want of prudence or moderation more than can be
urged, with far greater justice, against Protestant communities and
institutions? What is there in it to make us hypocrites, if it has not
that effect upon Protestants? We are called upon, not to profess any
thing, but to submit and be silent, as Protestant Churchmen have before
now obeyed the royal command to abstain from certain theological
questions. Such injunctions as I have been contemplating are laid merely
upon our actions, not upon our thoughts. How, for instance, does it tend
to make a man a hypocrite, to be forbidden to publish a libel? his
thoughts are as free as before: authoritative prohibitions may tease and
irritate, but they have no bearing whatever upon the exercise of reason.

So much at first sight; but I will go on to say further, that, in spite
of all that the most hostile critic may urge about the encroachments or
severities of high ecclesiastics, in times past, in the use of their
power, I think that the event has shown after all, that they were mainly
in the right, and that those whom they were hard upon were mainly in the
wrong. I love, for instance, the name of Origen: I will not listen to
the notion that so great a soul was lost; but I am quite sure that, in
the contest between his doctrine and followers and the ecclesiastical
power, his opponents were right, and he was wrong. Yet who can speak
with patience of his enemy and the enemy of St. John Chrysostom, that
Theophilus, bishop of Alexandria? who can admire or revere Pope
Vigilius? And here another consideration presents itself to my thoughts.
In reading ecclesiastical history, when I was an Anglican, it used to be
forcibly brought home to me, how the initial error of what afterwards
became heresy was the urging forward some truth against the prohibition
of authority at an unseasonable time. There is a time for every thing,
and many a man desires a reformation of an abuse, or the fuller
development of a doctrine, or the adoption of a particular policy, but
forgets to ask himself whether the right time for it is come: and,
knowing that there is no one who will be doing any thing towards its
accomplishment in his own lifetime unless he does it himself, he will
not listen to the voice of authority, and he spoils a good work in his
own century, in order that another man, as yet unborn, may not have the
opportunity of bringing it happily to perfection in the next. He may
seem to the world to be nothing else than a bold champion for the truth
and a martyr to free opinion, when he is just one of those persons whom
the competent authority ought to silence; and, though the case may not
fall within that subject-matter in which that authority is infallible,
or the formal conditions of the exercise of that gift may be wanting, it
is clearly the duty of authority to act vigorously in the case. Yet its
act will go down to posterity as an instance of a tyrannical
interference with private judgment, and of the silencing of a reformer,
and of a base love of corruption or error; and it will show still less
to advantage, if the ruling power happens in its proceedings to evince
any defect of prudence or consideration. And all those who take the part
of that ruling authority will be considered as time-servers, or
indifferent to the cause of uprightness and truth; while, on the other
hand, the said authority may be accidentally supported by a violent
ultra party, which exalts opinions into dogmas, and has it principally
at heart to destroy every school of thought but its own.

Such a state of things may be provoking and discouraging at the time, in
the case of two classes of persons; of moderate men who wish to make
differences in religious opinion as little as they fairly can be made;
and of such as keenly perceive, and are honestly eager to remedy,
existing evils,--evils, of which divines in this or that foreign country
know nothing at all, and which even at home, where they exist, it is not
every one who has the means of estimating. This is a state of things
both of past time and of the present. We live in a wonderful age; the
enlargement of the circle of secular knowledge just now is simply a
bewilderment, and the more so, because it has the promise of continuing,
and that with greater rapidity, and more signal results. Now these
discoveries, certain or probable, have in matter of fact an indirect
bearing upon religious opinions, and the question arises how are the
respective claims of revelation and of natural science to be adjusted.
Few minds in earnest can remain at ease without some sort of rational
grounds for their religious belief; to reconcile theory and fact is
almost an instinct of the mind. When then a flood of facts, ascertained
or suspected, comes pouring in upon us, with a multitude of others in
prospect, all believers in Revelation, be they Catholic or not, are
roused to consider their bearing upon themselves, both for the honour of
God, and from tenderness for those many souls who, in consequence of the
confident tone of the schools of secular knowledge, are in danger of
being led away into a bottomless liberalism of thought.

I am not going to criticize here that vast body of men, in the mass, who
at this time would profess to be liberals in religion; and who look
towards the discoveries of the age, certain or in progress, as their
informants, direct or indirect, as to what they shall think about the
unseen and the future. The Liberalism which gives a colour to society
now, is very different from that character of thought which bore the
name thirty or forty years ago. Now it is scarcely a party; it is the
educated lay world. When I was young, I knew the word first as giving
name to a periodical, set up by Lord Byron and others. Now, as then, I
have no sympathy with the philosophy of Byron. Afterwards, Liberalism
was the badge of a theological school, of a dry and repulsive character,
not very dangerous in itself, though dangerous as opening the door to
evils which it did not itself either anticipate or comprehend. At
present it is nothing else than that deep, plausible scepticism, of
which I spoke above, as being the development of human reason, as
practically exercised by the natural man.

The Liberal religionists of this day are a very mixed body, and
therefore I am not intending to speak against them. There may be, and
doubtless is, in the hearts of some or many of them a real antipathy or
anger against revealed truth, which it is distressing to think of.
Again, in many men of science or literature there may be an animosity
arising from almost a personal feeling; it being a matter of party, a
point of honour, the excitement of a game, or a satisfaction to the
soreness or annoyance occasioned by the acrimony or narrowness of
apologists for religion, to prove that Christianity or that Scripture is
untrustworthy. Many scientific and literary men, on the other hand, go
on, I am confident, in a straightforward impartial way, in their own
province and on their own line of thought, without any disturbance from
religious difficulties in themselves, or any wish at all to give pain to
others by the result of their investigations. It would ill become me, as
if I were afraid of truth of any kind, to blame those who pursue secular
facts, by means of the reason which God has given them, to their logical
conclusions: or to be angry with science, because religion is bound in
duty to take cognizance of its teaching. But putting these particular
classes of men aside, as having no special call on the sympathy of the
Catholic, of course he does most deeply enter into the feelings of a
fourth and large class of men, in the educated portions of society, of
religious and sincere minds, who are simply perplexed,--frightened or
rendered desperate, as the case may be,--by the utter confusion into
which late discoveries or speculations have thrown their most elementary
ideas of religion. Who does not feel for such men? who can have one
unkind thought of them? I take up in their behalf St. Augustine's
beautiful words, "Illi in vos sæviant," &c. Let them be fierce with you
who have no experience of the difficulty with which error is
discriminated from truth, and the way of life is found amid the
illusions of the world. How many a Catholic has in his thoughts followed
such men, many of them so good, so true, so noble! how often has the
wish risen in his heart that some one from among his own people should
come forward as the champion of revealed truth against its opponents!
Various persons, Catholic and Protestant, have asked me to do so myself;
but I had several strong difficulties in the way. One of the greatest is
this, that at the moment it is so difficult to say precisely what it is
that is to be encountered and overthrown. I am far from denying that
scientific knowledge is really growing, but it is by fits and starts;
hypotheses rise and fall; it is difficult to anticipate which of them
will keep their ground, and what the state of knowledge in relation to
them will be from year to year. In this condition of things, it has
seemed to me to be very undignified for a Catholic to commit himself to
the work of chasing what might turn out to be phantoms, and, in behalf
of some special objections, to be ingenious in devising a theory, which,
before it was completed, might have to give place to some theory newer
still, from the fact that those former objections had already come to
nought under the uprising of others. It seemed to be specially a time,
in which Christians had a call to be patient, in which they had no other
way of helping those who were alarmed, than that of exhorting them to
have a little faith and fortitude, and to "beware," as the poet says,
"of dangerous steps." This seemed so clear to me, the more I thought of
the matter, as to make me surmise, that, if I attempted what had so
little promise in it, I should find that the highest Catholic Authority
was against the attempt, and that I should have spent my time and my
thought, in doing what either it would be imprudent to bring before the
public at all, or what, did I do so, would only complicate matters
further which were already complicated, without my interference, more
than enough. And I interpret recent acts of that authority as fulfilling
my expectation; I interpret them as tying the hands of a
controversialist, such as I should be, and teaching us that true wisdom,
which Moses inculcated on his people, when the Egyptians were pursuing
them, "Fear ye not, stand still; the Lord shall fight for you, and ye
shall hold your peace." And so far from finding a difficulty in obeying
in this case, I have cause to be thankful and to rejoice to have so
clear a direction in a matter of difficulty.

But if we would ascertain with correctness the real course of a
principle, we must look at it at a certain distance, and as history
represents it to us. Nothing carried on by human instruments, but has
its irregularities, and affords ground for criticism, when minutely
scrutinized in matters of detail. I have been speaking of that aspect of
the action of an infallible authority, which is most open to invidious
criticism from those who view it from without; I have tried to be fair,
in estimating what can be said to its disadvantage, as witnessed at a
particular time in the Catholic Church, and now I wish its adversaries
to be equally fair in their judgment upon its historical character. Can,
then, the infallible authority, with any show of reason, be said in fact
to have destroyed the energy of the Catholic intellect? Let it be
observed, I have not here to speak of any conflict which ecclesiastical
authority has had with science, for this simple reason, that conflict
there has been none; and that, because the secular sciences, as they now
exist, are a novelty in the world, and there has been no time yet for a
history of relations between theology and these new methods of
knowledge, and indeed the Church may be said to have kept clear of them,
as is proved by the constantly cited case of Galileo. Here "exceptio
probat regulam:" for it is the one stock argument. Again, I have not to
speak of any relations of the Church to the new sciences, because my
simple question all along has been whether the assumption of
infallibility by the proper authority is adapted to make me a hypocrite,
and till that authority passes decrees on pure physical subjects and
calls on me to subscribe them, (which it never will do, because it has
not the power,) it has no tendency to interfere by any of its acts with
my private judgment on those points. The simple question is, whether
authority has so acted upon the reason of individuals, that they can
have no opinion of their own, and have but an alternative of slavish
superstition or secret rebellion of heart; and I think the whole history
of theology puts an absolute negative upon such a supposition.

It is hardly necessary to argue out so plain a point. It is individuals,
and not the Holy See, that have taken the initiative, and given the lead
to the Catholic mind, in theological inquiry. Indeed, it is one of the
reproaches urged against the Roman Church, that it has originated
nothing, and has only served as a sort of _remora_ or break in the
development of doctrine. And it is an objection which I really embrace
as a truth; for such I conceive to be the main purpose of its
extraordinary gift. It is said, and truly, that the Church of Rome
possessed no great mind in the whole period of persecution. Afterwards
for a long while, it has not a single doctor to show; St. Leo, its
first, is the teacher of one point of doctrine; St. Gregory, who stands
at the very extremity of the first age of the Church, has no place in
dogma or philosophy. The great luminary of the western world is, as we
know, St. Augustine; he, no infallible teacher, has formed the intellect
of Christian Europe; indeed to the African Church generally we must look
for the best early exposition of Latin ideas. Moreover, of the African
divines, the first in order of time, and not the least influential, is
the strong-minded and heterodox Tertullian. Nor is the Eastern
intellect, as such, without its share in the formation of the Latin
teaching. The free thought of Origen is visible in the writings of the
Western Doctors, Hilary and Ambrose; and the independent mind of Jerome
has enriched his own vigorous commentaries on Scripture, from the stores
of the scarcely orthodox Eusebius. Heretical questionings have been
transmuted by the living power of the Church into salutary truths. The
case is the same as regards the Ecumenical Councils. Authority in its
most imposing exhibition, grave bishops, laden with the traditions and
rivalries of particular nations or places, have been guided in their
decisions by the commanding genius of individuals, sometimes young and
of inferior rank. Not that uninspired intellect overruled the
super-human gift which was committed to the Council, which would be a
self-contradictory assertion, but that in that process of inquiry and
deliberation, which ended in an infallible enunciation, individual
reason was paramount. Thus Malchion, a mere presbyter, was the
instrument of the great Council of Antioch in the third century in
meeting and refuting, for the assembled Fathers, the heretical Patriarch
of that see. Parallel to this instance is the influence, so well known,
of a young deacon, St. Athanasius, with the 318 Fathers at Nicæa. In
mediæval times we read of St. Anselm at Bari, as the champion of the
Council there held, against the Greeks. At Trent, the writings of St.
Bonaventura, and, what is more to the point, the address of a Priest and
theologian, Salmeron, had a critical effect on some of the definitions
of dogma. In some of those cases the influence might be partly moral,
but in others it was that of a discursive knowledge of ecclesiastical
writers, a scientific acquaintance with theology, and a force of thought
in the treatment of doctrine.

There are of course intellectual habits which theology does not tend to
form, as for instance the experimental, and again the philosophical; but
that is because it _is_ theology, not because of the gift of
infallibility. But, as far as this goes, I think it could be shown that
physical science on the other hand, or again mathematical, affords but
an imperfect training for the intellect. I do not see then how any
objection about the narrowness of theology comes into our question,
which simply is, whether the belief in an infallible authority destroys
the independence of the mind; and I consider that the whole history of
the Church, and especially the history of the theological schools, gives
a negative to the accusation. There never was a time when the intellect
of the educated class was more active, or rather more restless, than in
the middle ages. And then again all through Church history from the
first, how slow is authority in interfering! Perhaps a local teacher, or
a doctor in some local school, hazards a proposition, and a controversy
ensues. It smoulders or burns in one place, no one interposing; Rome
simply lets it alone. Then it comes before a Bishop; or some priest, or
some professor in some other seat of learning takes it up; and then
there is a second stage of it. Then it comes before a University, and it
may be condemned by the theological faculty. So the controversy proceeds
year after year, and Rome is still silent. An appeal perhaps is next
made to a seat of authority inferior to Rome; and then at last after a
long while it comes before the supreme power. Meanwhile, the question
has been ventilated and turned over and over again, and viewed on every
side of it, and authority is called upon to pronounce a decision, which
has already been arrived at by reason. But even then, perhaps the
supreme authority hesitates to do so, and nothing is determined on the
point for years: or so generally and vaguely, that the whole controversy
has to be gone through again, before it is ultimately determined. It is
manifest how a mode of proceeding, such as this, tends not only to the
liberty, but to the courage, of the individual theologian or
controversialist. Many a man has ideas, which he hopes are true, and
useful for his day, but he is not confident about them, and wishes to
have them discussed, He is willing, or rather would be thankful, to give
them up, if they can be proved to be erroneous or dangerous, and by
means of controversy he obtains his end. He is answered, and he yields;
or on the contrary he finds that he is considered safe. He would not
dare to do this, if he knew an authority, which was supreme and final,
was watching every word he said, and made signs of assent or dissent to
each sentence, as he uttered it. Then indeed he would be fighting, as
the Persian soldiers, under the lash, and the freedom of his intellect
might truly be said to be beaten out of him. But this has not been
so:--I do not mean to say that, when controversies run high, in schools
or even in small portions of the Church, an interposition may not
advisably take place; and again, questions may be of that urgent nature,
that an appeal must, as a matter of duty, be made at once to the highest
authority in the Church; but if we look into the history of controversy,
we shall find, I think, the general run of things to be such as I have
represented it. Zosimus treated Pelagius and C[oe]lestius with extreme
forbearance; St. Gregory VII. was equally indulgent with
Berengarius:--by reason of the very power of the Popes they have
commonly been slow and moderate in their use of it.

And here again is a further shelter for the legitimate exercise of the
reason:--the multitude of nations which are within the fold of the
Church will be found to have acted for its protection, against any
narrowness, on the supposition of narrowness, in the various authorities
at Rome, with whom lies the practical decision of controverted
questions. How have the Greek traditions been respected and provided for
in the later Ecumenical Councils, in spite of the countries that held
them being in a state of schism! There are important points of doctrine
which have been (humanly speaking) exempted from the infallible
sentence, by the tenderness with which its instruments, in framing it,
have treated the opinions of particular places. Then, again, such
national influences have a providential effect in moderating the bias
which the local influences of Italy may exert upon the See of St. Peter.
It stands to reason that, as the Gallican Church has in it a French
element, so Rome must have in it an element of Italy; and it is no
prejudice to the zeal and devotion with which we submit ourselves to the
Holy See to admit this plainly. It seems to me, as I have been saying,
that Catholicity is not only one of the notes of the Church, but,
according to the divine purposes, one of its securities. I think it
would be a very serious evil, which Divine Mercy avert! that the Church
should be contracted in Europe within the range of particular
nationalities. It is a great idea to introduce Latin civilization into
America, and to improve the Catholics there by the energy of French
devotedness; but I trust that all European races will ever have a place
in the Church, and assuredly I think that the loss of the English, not
to say the German element, in its composition has been a most serious
misfortune. And certainly, if there is one consideration more than
another which should make us English grateful to Pius the Ninth, it is
that, by giving us a Church of our own, he has prepared the way for our
own habits of mind, our own manner of reasoning, our own tastes, and our
own virtues, finding a place and thereby a sanctification, in the
Catholic Church.

       *       *       *       *       *

There is only one other subject, which I think it necessary to introduce
here, as bearing upon the vague suspicions which are attached in this
country to the Catholic Priesthood. It is one of which my accusers have
before now said much,--the charge of reserve and economy. They found it
in no slight degree on what I have said on the subject in my History of
the Arians, and in a note upon one of my Sermons in which I refer to it.
The principle of Reserve is also advocated by an admirable writer in two
numbers of the Tracts for the Times, and of these I was the Editor.

Now, as to the Economy itself[20], it is founded upon the words of our
Lord, "Cast not your pearls before swine;" and it was observed by the
early Christians more or less, in their intercourse with the heathen
populations among whom they lived. In the midst of the abominable
idolatries and impurities of that fearful time, the Rule of the Economy
was an imperative duty. But that rule, at least as I have explained and
recommended it, in anything that I have written, did not go beyond (1)
the concealing the truth when we could do so without deceit, (2) stating
it only partially, and (3) representing it under the nearest form
possible to a learner or inquirer, when he could not possibly understand
it exactly. I conceive that to draw Angels with wings is an instance of
the third of these economical modes; and to avoid the question, "Do
Christians believe in a Trinity?" by answering, "They believe in only
one God," would be an instance of the second. As to the first, it is
hardly an Economy, but comes under what is called the "Disciplina
Arcani." The second and third economical modes Clement calls _lying_;
meaning that a partial truth is in some sense a lie, as is also a
representative truth. And this, I think, is about the long and the short
of the ground of the accusation which has been so violently urged
against me, as being a patron of the Economy.

[20] Vide Note F, _The Economy_.

Of late years I have come to think, as I believe most writers do, that
Clement meant more than I have said. I used to think he used the word
"lie" as an hyperbole, but I now believe that he, as other early
Fathers, thought that, under certain circumstances, it was lawful to
tell a lie. This doctrine I never maintained, though I used to think, as
I do now, that the theory of the subject is surrounded with considerable
difficulty; and it is not strange that I should say so, considering that
great English writers declare without hesitation that in certain extreme
cases, as to save life, honour, or even property, a lie is allowable.
And thus I am brought to the direct question of truth, and of the
truthfulness of Catholic priests generally in their dealings with the
world, as bearing on the general question of their honesty, and of their
internal belief in their religious professions.

       *       *       *       *       *

It would answer no purpose, and it would be departing from the line of
writing which I have been observing all along, if I entered into any
formal discussion on this question; what I shall do here, as I have done
in the foregoing pages, is to give my own testimony on the matter in
question, and there to leave it. Now first I will say, that, when I
became a Catholic, nothing struck me more at once than the English
out-spoken manner of the Priests. It was the same at Oscott, at Old Hall
Green, at Ushaw; there was nothing of that smoothness, or mannerism,
which is commonly imputed to them, and they were more natural and
unaffected than many an Anglican clergyman. The many years, which have
passed since, have only confirmed my first impression. I have ever found
it in the priests of this Diocese; did I wish to point out a
straightforward Englishman, I should instance the Bishop, who has, to
our great benefit, for so many years presided over it.

And next, I was struck, when I had more opportunity of judging of the
Priests, by the simple faith in the Catholic Creed and system, of which
they always gave evidence, and which they never seemed to feel, in any
sense at all, to be a burden. And now that I have been in the Church
nineteen years, I cannot recollect hearing of a single instance in
England of an infidel priest. Of course there are men from time to time,
who leave the Catholic Church for another religion, but I am speaking of
cases, when a man keeps a fair outside to the world and is a hollow
hypocrite in his heart.

I wonder that the self-devotion of our priests does not strike a
Protestant in this point of view. What do they gain by professing a
Creed, in which, if their enemies are to be credited, they really do not
believe? What is their reward for committing themselves to a life of
self-restraint and toil, and perhaps to a premature and miserable death?
The Irish fever cut off between Liverpool and Leeds thirty priests and
more, young men in the flower of their days, old men who seemed entitled
to some quiet time after their long toil. There was a bishop cut off in
the North; but what had a man of his ecclesiastical rank to do with the
drudgery and danger of sick calls, except that Christian faith and
charity constrained him? Priests volunteered for the dangerous service.
It was the same with them on the first coming of the cholera, that
mysterious awe-inspiring infliction. If they did not heartily believe in
the Creed of the Church, then I will say that the remark of the Apostle
had its fullest illustration:--"If in this life only we have hope in
Christ, we are of all men most miserable." What could support a set of
hypocrites in the presence of a deadly disorder, one of them following
another in long order up the forlorn hope, and one after another
perishing? And such, I may say, in its substance, is every
Mission-Priest's life. He is ever ready to sacrifice himself for his
people. Night and day, sick or well himself, in all weathers, off he is,
on the news of a sick call. The fact of a parishioner dying without the
Sacraments through his fault is terrible to him; why terrible, if he has
not a deep absolute faith, which he acts upon with a free service?
Protestants admire this, when they see it; but they do not seem to see
as clearly, that it excludes the very notion of hypocrisy.

Sometimes, when they reflect upon it, it leads them to remark on the
wonderful discipline of the Catholic priesthood; they say that no Church
has so well ordered a clergy, and that in that respect it surpasses
their own; they wish they could have such exact discipline among
themselves. But is it an excellence which can he purchased? is it a
phenomenon which depends on nothing else than itself, or is it an effect
which has a cause? You cannot buy devotion at a price. "It hath never
been heard of in the land of Chanaan, neither hath it been seen in
Theman. The children of Agar, the merchants of Meran, none of these have
known its way." What then is that wonderful charm, which makes a
thousand men act all in one way, and infuses a prompt obedience to rule,
as if they were under some stern military compulsion? How difficult to
find an answer, unless you will allow the obvious one, that they believe
intensely what they profess!

       *       *       *       *       *

I cannot think what it can be, in a day like this, which keeps up the
prejudice of this Protestant country against us, unless it be the vague
charges which are drawn from our books of Moral Theology; and with a
short notice of the work in particular which by our accusers is
especially thrown into our teeth, I shall bring these observations to a

St. Alfonso Liguori, then, it cannot be denied, lays down that an
equivocation, (that is, a play upon words, in which one sense is taken
by the speaker, and another sense intended by him for the hearer,) is
allowable, if there is a just cause, that is, in an extraordinary case,
and may even be confirmed by an oath. I shall give my opinion on this
point as plainly as any Protestant can wish; and therefore I avow at
once that in this department of morality, much as I admire the high
points of the Italian character, I like the English rule of conduct
better; but, in saying so, I am not, as will shortly be seen, saying any
thing disrespectful to St. Alfonso, who was a lover of truth, and whose
intercession I trust I shall not lose, though, on the matter under
consideration, I follow other guidance in preference to his.

Now I make this remark first:--great English authors, Jeremy Taylor,
Milton, Paley, Johnson, men of very different schools of thought,
distinctly say, that under certain extraordinary circumstances it is
allowable to tell a lie. Taylor says: "To tell a lie for charity, to
save a man's life, the life of a friend, of a husband, of a prince, of a
useful and a public person, hath not only been done at all times, but
commended by great and wise and good men. Who would not save his
father's life, at the charge of a harmless lie, from persecutors or
tyrants?" Again, Milton says: "What man in his senses would deny, that
there are those whom we have the best grounds for considering that we
ought to deceive,--as boys, madmen, the sick, the intoxicated, enemies,
men in error, thieves? I would ask, by which of the commandments is a
lie forbidden? You will say, by the ninth. If then my lie does not
injure my neighbour, certainly it is not forbidden by this commandment."
Paley says: "There are falsehoods, which are not lies, that is, which
are not criminal." Johnson: "The general rule is, that truth should
never be violated; there must, however, be some exceptions. If, for
instance, a murderer should ask you which way a man is gone."

Now, I am not using these instances as an _argumentum ad hominem_; but
the purpose to which I put them is this:--

1. First, I have set down the distinct statements of Taylor, Milton,
Paley, and Johnson:--now, would any one give ever so little weight to
these statements, in forming a real estimate of the veracity of the
writers, if they now were alive? Were a man, who is so fierce with St.
Alfonso, to meet Paley or Johnson to-morrow in society, would he look
upon him as a liar, a knave, as dishonest and untrustworthy? I am sure
he would not. Why then does he not deal out the same measure to Catholic
priests? If a copy of Scavini, which speaks of equivocation as being in
a just cause allowable, be found in a student's room at Oscott, not
Scavini himself, but even the unhappy student, who has what a Protestant
calls a bad book in his possession, is judged to be for life unworthy of
credit. Are all Protestant text-books, which are used at the University,
immaculate? Is it necessary to take for gospel every word of Aristotle's
Ethics, or every assertion of Hey or Burnett on the Articles? Are
text-books the ultimate authority, or rather are they not manuals in the
hands of a lecturer, and the groundwork of his remarks? But, again, let
us suppose, not the case of a student, or of a professor, but of Scavini
himself, or of St. Alfonso; now here again I ask, since you would not
scruple in holding Paley for an honest man, in spite of his defence of
lying, why do you scruple at holding St. Alfonso honest? I am perfectly
sure that you would not scruple at Paley personally; you might not agree
with him, but you would not go further than to call him a bold thinker:
then why should St. Alfonso's person be odious to you, as well as his

Now I wish to tell you why you are not afraid of Paley; because, you
would say, when he advocated lying, he was taking _extreme_ or _special
cases_. You would have no fear of a man who you knew had shot a burglar
dead in his own house, because you know you are _not_ a burglar: so you
would not think that Paley had a habit of telling lies in society,
because in the case of a cruel alternative he thought it the lesser evil
to tell a lie. Then why do you show such suspicion of a Catholic
theologian, who speaks of certain extraordinary cases in which an
equivocation in a penitent cannot be visited by his confessor as if it
were a sin? for this is the exact point of the question.

But again, why does Paley, why does Jeremy Taylor, when no practical
matter is actually before him, lay down a maxim about the lawfulness of
lying, which will startle most readers? The reason is plain. He is
forming a theory of morals, and he must treat every question in turn as
it comes. And this is just what St. Alfonso or Scavini is doing. You
only try your hand yourself at a treatise on the rules of morality, and
you will see how difficult the work is. What is the _definition_ of a
lie? Can you give a better than that it is a sin against justice, as
Taylor and Paley consider it? but, if so, how can it be a sin at all, if
your neighbour is not injured? If you do not like this definition, take
another; and then, by means of that, perhaps you will be defending St.
Alfonso's equivocation. However, this is what I insist upon; that St.
Alfonso, as Paley, is considering the different portions of a large
subject, and he must, on the subject of lying, give his judgment, though
on that subject it is difficult to form any judgment which is

But further still: you must not suppose that a philosopher or moralist
uses in his own case the licence which his theory itself would allow
him. A man in his own person is guided by his own conscience; but in
drawing out a system of rules he is obliged to go by logic, and follow
the exact deduction of conclusion from conclusion, and must be sure that
the whole system is coherent and one. You hear of even immoral or
irreligious books being written by men of decent character; there is a
late writer who says that David Hume's sceptical works are not at all
the picture of the man. A priest might write a treatise which was really
lax on the subject of lying, which might come under the condemnation of
the Holy See, as some treatises on that score have already been
condemned, and yet in his own person be a rigorist. And, in fact, it is
notorious from St. Alfonso's Life, that he, who has the repute of being
so lax a moralist, had one of the most scrupulous and anxious of
consciences himself. Nay, further than this, he was originally in the
Law, and on one occasion he was betrayed into the commission of what
seemed like a deceit, though it was an accident; and that was the very
occasion of his leaving the profession and embracing the religious life.

The account of this remarkable occurrence is told us in his Life:--

"Notwithstanding he had carefully examined over and over the details of
the process, he was completely mistaken regarding the sense of one
document, which constituted the right of the adverse party. The advocate
of the Grand Duke perceived the mistake, but he allowed Alfonso to
continue his eloquent address to the end without interruption; as soon,
however, as he had finished, he rose, and said with cutting coolness,
'Sir, the case is not exactly what you suppose it to be; if you will
review the process, and examine this paper attentively, you will find
there precisely the contrary of all you have advanced.' 'Willingly,'
replied Alfonso, without hesitating; 'the decision depends on this
question--whether the fief were granted under the law of Lombardy, or
under the French Law.' The paper being examined, it was found that the
Grand Duke's advocate was in the right. 'Yes,' said Alfonso, holding the
paper in his hand, 'I am wrong, I have been mistaken.' A discovery so
unexpected, and the fear of being accused of unfair dealing filled him
with consternation, and covered him with confusion, so much so, that
every one saw his emotion. It was in vain that the President Caravita,
who loved him, and knew his integrity, tried to console him, by telling
him that such mistakes were not uncommon, even among the first men at
the bar. Alfonso would listen to nothing, but, overwhelmed with
confusion, his head sunk on his breast, he said to himself, 'World, I
know you now; courts of law, never shall you see me again!' And turning
his back on the assembly, he withdrew to his own house, incessantly
repeating to himself, 'World, I know you now.' What annoyed him most
was, that having studied and re-studied the process during a whole
month, without having discovered this important flaw, he could not
understand how it had escaped his observation."

And this is the man, so easily scared at the very shadow of trickery,
who is so flippantly pronounced to be a patron of lying.

But, in truth, a Catholic theologian has objects in view which men in
general little compass; he is not thinking of himself, but of a
multitude of souls, sick souls, sinful souls, carried away by sin, full
of evil, and he is trying with all his might to rescue them from their
miserable state; and, in order to save them from more heinous sins, he
tries, to the full extent that his conscience will allow him to go, to
shut his eyes to such sins, as are, though sins, yet lighter in
character or degree. He knows perfectly well that, if he is as strict as
he would wish to be, he shall be able to do nothing at all with the run
of men; so he is as indulgent with them as ever he can be. Let it not be
for an instant supposed, that I allow of the maxim of doing evil that
good may come; but, keeping clear of this, there is a way of winning men
from greater sins by winking for the time at the less, or at mere
improprieties or faults; and this is the key to the difficulty which
Catholic books of moral theology so often cause to the Protestant. They
are intended for the Confessor, and Protestants view them as intended
for the Preacher.

2. And I observe upon Taylor, Milton, and Paley thus: What would a
Protestant clergyman say to me, if I accused him of teaching that a lie
was allowable; and if, when he asked for my proof, I said in reply that
such was the doctrine of Taylor and Milton? Why, he would sharply
retort, "_I_ am not bound by Taylor or Milton;" and if I went on urging
that "Taylor was one of his authorities," he would answer that Taylor
was a great writer, but great writers were not therefore infallible.
This is pretty much the answer which I make, when I am considered in
this matter a disciple of St. Alfonso.

I plainly and positively state, and without any reserve, that I do not
at all follow this holy and charitable man in this portion of his
teaching. There are various schools of opinion allowed in the Church:
and on this point I follow others. I follow Cardinal Gerdil, and Natalis
Alexander, nay, St. Augustine. I will quote one passage from Natalis
Alexander:--"They certainly lie, who utter the words of an oath, without
the will to swear or bind themselves: or who make use of mental
reservations and _equivocations_ in swearing, since they signify by
words what they have not in mind, contrary to the end for which language
was instituted, viz. as signs of ideas. Or they mean something else than
the words signify in themselves and the common custom of speech." And,
to take an instance: I do not believe any priest in England would dream
of saying, "My friend is not here;" meaning, "He is not in my pocket or
under my shoe." Nor should any consideration make me say so myself. I do
not think St. Alfonso would in his own case have said so; and he would
have been as much shocked at Taylor and Paley, as Protestants are at

[21] Vide Note G, _Lying and Equivocation_.

       *       *       *       *       *

And now, if Protestants wish to know what our real teaching is, as on
other subjects, so on that of lying, let them look, not at our books of
casuistry, but at our catechisms. Works on pathology do not give the
best insight into the form and the harmony of the human frame; and, as
it is with the body, so is it with the mind. The Catechism of the
Council of Trent was drawn up for the express purpose of providing
preachers with subjects for their Sermons; and, as my whole work has
been a defence of myself, I may here say that I rarely preach a Sermon,
but I go to this beautiful and complete Catechism to get both my matter
and my doctrine. There we find the following notices about the duty of

"'Thou shalt not bear false witness,' &c.: let attention be drawn to two
laws contained in this commandment:--the one, forbidding false witness;
the other bidding, that removing all pretence and deceits, we should
measure our words and deeds by simple truth, as the Apostle admonished
the Ephesians of that duty in these words: 'Doing truth in charity, let
us grow in Him through all things.'

"To deceive by a lie in joke or for the sake of compliment, though to no
one there accrues loss or gain in consequence, nevertheless is
altogether unworthy: for thus the Apostle admonishes, 'Putting aside
lying, speak ye truth.' For therein is great danger of lapsing into
frequent and more serious lying, and from lies in joke men gain the
habit of lying, whence they gain the character of not being truthful.
And thence again, in order to gain credence to their words, they find it
necessary to make a practice of swearing.

"Nothing is more necessary [for us] than truth of testimony, in those
things, which we neither know ourselves, nor can allowably be ignorant
of, on which point there is extant that maxim of St. Augustine's: Whoso
conceals the truth, and whoso puts forth a lie, each is guilty; the one
because he is not willing to do a service, the other because he has a
wish to do a mischief.

"It is lawful at times to be silent about the truth, but out of a court
of law; for in court, when a witness is interrogated by the judge
according to law, the truth is wholly to be brought out.

"Witnesses, however, must beware, lest, from over-confidence in their
memory, they affirm for certain, what they have not verified.

"In order that the faithful may with more good will avoid the sin of
lying, the Parish Priest shall set before them the extreme misery and
turpitude of this wickedness. For, in holy writ, the devil is called the
father of a lie; for, in that he did not remain in Truth, he is a liar,
and the father of a lie. He will add, with the view of ridding men of so
great a crime, the evils which follow upon lying; and, whereas they are
innumerable, he will point out [at least] the sources and the general
heads of these mischiefs and calamities, viz. 1. How great is God's
displeasure and how great His hatred of a man who is insincere and a
liar. 2. What little security there is that a man who is specially hated
by God may not be visited by the heaviest punishments. 3. What more
unclean and foul, as St. James says, than ... that a fountain by the
same jet should send out sweet water and bitter? 4. For that tongue,
which just now praised God, next, as far as in it lies, dishonours Him
by lying. 5. In consequence, liars are shut out from the possession of
heavenly beatitude. 6. That too is the worst evil of lying, that that
disease of the mind is generally incurable.

"Moreover, there is this harm too, and one of vast extent, and touching
men generally, that by insincerity and lying faith and truth are lost,
which are the firmest bonds of human society, and, when they are lost,
supreme confusion follows in life, so that men seem in nothing to differ
from devils.

"Lastly, the Parish Priest will set those right who excuse their
insincerity and allege the example of wise men, who, they say, are used
to lie for an occasion. He will tell them, what is most true, that the
wisdom of the flesh is death. He will exhort his hearers to trust in
God, when they are in difficulties and straits, nor to have recourse to
the expedient of a lie.

"They who throw the blame of their own lie on those who have already by
a lie deceived them, are to be taught that men must not revenge
themselves, nor make up for one evil by another."

There is much more in the Catechism to the same effect, and it is of
universal obligation; whereas the decision of a particular author in
morals need not be accepted by any one.

       *       *       *       *       *

To one other authority I appeal on this subject, which commands from me
attention of a special kind, for it is the teaching of a Father. It will
serve to bring my work to a conclusion.

"St. Philip," says the Roman Oratorian who wrote his Life, "had a
particular dislike of affectation both in himself and others, in
speaking, in dressing, or in any thing else.

"He avoided all ceremony which savoured of worldly compliment, and
always showed himself a great stickler for Christian simplicity in every
thing; so that, when he had to deal with men of worldly prudence, he did
not very readily accommodate himself to them.

"And he avoided, as much as possible, having any thing to do with
_two-faced persons_, who did not go simply and straightforwardly to work
in their transactions.

"_As for liars, he could not endure them_, and he was _continually
reminding_ his spiritual children, _to avoid them as they would a

These are the principles on which I have acted before I was a Catholic;
these are the principles which, I trust, will be my stay and guidance to
the end.

I have closed this history of myself with St. Philip's name upon St.
Philip's feast-day; and, having done so, to whom can I more suitably
offer it, as a memorial of affection and gratitude, than to St. Philip's
sons, my dearest brothers of this House, the Priests of the Birmingham
Oratory, Ambrose St. John, Henry Austin Mills, Henry Bittleston, Edward
Caswall, William Paine Neville, and Henry Ignatius Dudley Ryder? who
have been so faithful to me; who have been so sensitive of my needs; who
have been so indulgent to my failings; who have carried me through so
many trials; who have grudged no sacrifice, if I asked for it; who have
been so cheerful under discouragements of my causing; who have done so
many good works, and let me have the credit of them;--with whom I have
lived so long, with whom I hope to die.

And to you especially, dear Ambrose St. John; whom God gave me, when He
took every one else away; who are the link between my old life and my
new; who have now for twenty-one years been so devoted to me, so
patient, so zealous, so tender; who have let me lean so hard upon you;
who have watched me so narrowly; who have never thought of yourself, if
I was in question.

And in you I gather up and bear in memory those familiar affectionate
companions and counsellors, who in Oxford were given to me, one after
another, to be my daily solace and relief; and all those others, of
great name and high example, who were my thorough friends, and showed me
true attachment in times long past; and also those many younger men,
whether I knew them or not, who have never been disloyal to me by word
or deed; and of all these, thus various in their relations to me, those
more especially who have since joined the Catholic Church.

And I earnestly pray for this whole company, with a hope against hope,
that all of us, who once were so united, and so happy in our union, may
even now be brought at length, by the Power of the Divine Will, into One
Fold and under One Shepherd.

_May 26, 1864._
In Festo Corp. Christ.




I have been asked to explain more fully what it is I mean by
"Liberalism," because merely to call it the Anti-dogmatic Principle is
to tell very little about it. An explanation is the more necessary,
because such good Catholics and distinguished writers as Count
Montalembert and Father Lacordaire use the word in a favorable sense,
and claim to be Liberals themselves. "The only singularity," says the
former of the two in describing his friend, "was his Liberalism. By a
phenomenon, at that time unheard of, this convert, this seminarist, this
confessor of nuns, was just as stubborn a liberal, as in the days when
he was a student and a barrister."--Life (transl.), p. 19.

I do not believe that it is possible for me to differ in any important
matter from two men whom I so highly admire. In their general line of
thought and conduct I enthusiastically concur, and consider them to be
before their age. And it would be strange indeed if I did not read with
a special interest, in M. de Montalembert's beautiful volume, of the
unselfish aims, the thwarted projects, the unrequited toils, the grand
and tender resignation of Lacordaire. If I hesitate to adopt their
language about Liberalism, I impute the necessity of such hesitation to
some differences between us in the use of words or in the circumstances
of country; and thus I reconcile myself to remaining faithful to my own
conception of it, though I cannot have their voices to give force to
mine. Speaking then in my own way, I proceed to explain what I meant as
a Protestant by Liberalism, and to do so in connexion with the
circumstances under which that system of opinion came before me at

If I might presume to contrast Lacordaire and myself, I should say, that
we had been both of us inconsistent;--he, a Catholic, in calling himself
a Liberal; I, a Protestant, in being an Anti-liberal; and moreover, that
the cause of this inconsistency had been in both cases one and the same.
That is, we were both of us such good conservatives, as to take up with
what we happened to find established in our respective countries, at the
time when we came into active life. Toryism was the creed of Oxford; he
inherited, and made the best of, the French Revolution.

When, in the beginning of the present century, not very long before my
own time, after many years of moral and intellectual declension, the
University of Oxford woke up to a sense of its duties, and began to
reform itself, the first instruments of this change, to whose zeal and
courage we all owe so much, were naturally thrown together for mutual
support, against the numerous obstacles which lay in their path, and
soon stood out in relief from the body of residents, who, though many of
them men of talent themselves, cared little for the object which the
others had at heart. These Reformers, as they may be called, were for
some years members of scarcely more than three or four Colleges; and
their own Colleges, as being under their direct influence, of course had
the benefit of those stricter views of discipline and teaching, which
they themselves were urging on the University. They had, in no long
time, enough of real progress in their several spheres of exertion, and
enough of reputation out of doors, to warrant them in considering
themselves the _élite_ of the place; and it is not wonderful if they
were in consequence led to look down upon the majority of Colleges,
which had not kept pace with the reform, or which had been hostile to
it. And, when those rivalries of one man with another arose, whether
personal or collegiate, which befall literary and scientific societies,
such disturbances did but tend to raise in their eyes the value which
they had already set upon academical distinction, and increase their
zeal in pursuing it. Thus was formed an intellectual circle or class in
the University,--men, who felt they had a career before them, as soon as
the pupils, whom they were forming, came into public life; men, whom
non-residents, whether country parsons or preachers of the Low Church,
on coming up from time to time to the old place, would look at, partly
with admiration, partly with suspicion, as being an honour indeed to
Oxford, but withal exposed to the temptation of ambitious views, and to
the spiritual evils signified in what is called the "pride of reason."

Nor was this imputation altogether unjust; for, as they were following
out the proper idea of a University, of course they suffered more or
less from the moral malady incident to such a pursuit. The very object
of such great institutions lies in the cultivation of the mind and the
spread of knowledge: if this object, as all human objects, has its
dangers at all times, much more would these exist in the case of men,
who were engaged in a work of reformation, and had the opportunity of
measuring themselves, not only with those who were their equals in
intellect, but with the many, who were below them. In this select circle
or class of men, in various Colleges, the direct instruments and the
choice fruit of real University Reform, we see the rudiments of the
Liberal party.

Whenever men are able to act at all, there is the chance of extreme and
intemperate action; and therefore, when there is exercise of mind, there
is the chance of wayward or mistaken exercise. Liberty of thought is in
itself a good; but it gives an opening to false liberty. Now by
Liberalism I mean false liberty of thought, or the exercise of thought
upon matters, in which, from the constitution of the human mind, thought
cannot be brought to any successful issue, and therefore is out of
place. Among such matters are first principles of whatever kind; and of
these the most sacred and momentous are especially to be reckoned the
truths of Revelation. Liberalism then is the mistake of subjecting to
human judgment those revealed doctrines which are in their nature beyond
and independent of it, and of claiming to determine on intrinsic grounds
the truth and value of propositions which rest for their reception
simply on the external authority of the Divine Word.

Now certainly the party of whom I have been speaking, taken as a whole,
were of a character of mind out of which Liberalism might easily grow
up, as in fact it did; certainly they breathed around an influence which
made men of religious seriousness shrink into themselves. But, while I
say as much as this, I have no intention whatever of implying that the
talent of the University, in the years before and after 1820, was
liberal in its theology, in the sense in which the bulk of the educated
classes through the country are liberal now. I would not for the world
be supposed to detract from the Christian earnestness, and the activity
in religious works, above the average of men, of many of the persons in
question. They would have protested against their being supposed to
place reason before faith, or knowledge before devotion; yet I do
consider that they unconsciously encouraged and successfully introduced
into Oxford a licence of opinion which went far beyond them. In their
day they did little more than take credit to themselves for enlightened
views, largeness of mind, liberality of sentiment, without drawing the
line between what was just and what was inadmissible in speculation, and
without seeing the tendency of their own principles; and engrossing, as
they did, the mental energy of the University, they met for a time with
no effectual hindrance to the spread of their influence, except (what
indeed at the moment was most effectual, but not of an intellectual
character) the thorough-going Toryism and traditionary
Church-of-England-ism of the great body of the Colleges and Convocation.

Now and then a man of note appeared in the Pulpit or Lecture Rooms of
the University, who was a worthy representative of the more religious
and devout Anglicans. These belonged chiefly to the High-Church party;
for the party called Evangelical never has been able to breathe freely
in the atmosphere of Oxford, and at no time has been conspicuous, as a
party, for talent or learning. But of the old High Churchmen several
exerted some sort of Anti-liberal influence in the place, at least from
time to time, and that influence of an intellectual nature. Among these
especially may be mentioned Mr. John Miller, of Worcester College, who
preached the Bampton Lecture in the year 1817. But, as far as I know, he
who turned the tide, and brought the talent of the University round to
the side of the old theology, and against what was familiarly called
"march-of-mind," was Mr. Keble. In and from Keble the mental activity of
Oxford took that contrary direction which issued in what was called

Keble was young in years, when he became a University celebrity, and
younger in mind. He had the purity and simplicity of a child. He had few
sympathies with the intellectual party, who sincerely welcomed him as a
brilliant specimen of young Oxford. He instinctively shut up before
literary display, and pomp and donnishness of manner, faults which
always will beset academical notabilities. He did not respond to their
advances. His collision with them (if it may be so called) was thus
described by Hurrell Froude in his own way. "Poor Keble!" he used
gravely to say, "he was asked to join the aristocracy of talent, but he
soon found his level." He went into the country, but his instance serves
to prove that men need not, in the event, lose that influence which is
rightly theirs, because they happen to be thwarted in the use of the
channels natural and proper to its exercise. He did not lose his place
in the minds of men because he was out of their sight.

Keble was a man who guided himself and formed his judgments, not by
processes of reason, by inquiry or by argument, but, to use the word in
a broad sense, by authority. Conscience is an authority; the Bible is an
authority; such is the Church; such is Antiquity; such are the words of
the wise; such are hereditary lessons; such are ethical truths; such are
historical memories; such are legal saws and state maxims; such are
proverbs; such are sentiments, presages, and prepossessions. It seemed
to me as if he ever felt happier, when he could speak or act under some
such primary or external sanction; and could use argument mainly as a
means of recommending or explaining what had claims on his reception
prior to proof. He even felt a tenderness, I think, in spite of Bacon,
for the Idols of the Tribe and the Den, of the Market and the Theatre.
What he hated instinctively was heresy, insubordination, resistance to
things established, claims of independence, disloyalty, innovation, a
critical, censorious spirit. And such was the main principle of the
school which in the course of years was formed around him; nor is it
easy to set limits to its influence in its day; for multitudes of men,
who did not profess its teaching, or accept its peculiar doctrines, were
willing nevertheless, or found it to their purpose, to act in company
with it.

Indeed for a time it was practically the champion and advocate of the
political doctrines of the great clerical interest through the country,
who found in Mr. Keble and his friends an intellectual, as well as moral
support to their cause, which they looked for in vain elsewhere. His
weak point, in their eyes, was his consistency; for he carried his love
of authority and old times so far, as to be more than gentle towards the
Catholic Religion, with which the Toryism of Oxford and of the Church of
England had no sympathy. Accordingly, if my memory be correct, he never
could get himself to throw his heart into the opposition made to
Catholic Emancipation, strongly as he revolted from the politics and the
instruments by means of which that Emancipation was won. I fancy he
would have had no difficulty in accepting Dr. Johnson's saying about
"the first Whig;" and it grieved and offended him that the "Via prima
salutis" should be opened to the Catholic body from the Whig quarter. In
spite of his reverence for the Old Religion, I conceive that on the
whole he would rather have kept its professors beyond the pale of the
Constitution with the Tories, than admit them on the principles of the
Whigs. Moreover, if the Revolution of 1688 was too lax in principle for
him and his friends, much less, as is very plain, could they endure to
subscribe to the revolutionary doctrines of 1776 and 1789, which they
felt to be absolutely and entirely out of keeping with theological

The Old Tory or Conservative party in Oxford had in it no principle or
power of development, and that from its very nature and constitution: it
was otherwise with the Liberals. They represented a new idea, which was
but gradually learning to recognize itself, to ascertain its
characteristics and external relations, and to exert an influence upon
the University. The party grew, all the time that I was in Oxford, even
in numbers, certainly in breadth and definiteness of doctrine, and in
power. And, what was a far higher consideration, by the accession of Dr.
Arnold's pupils, it was invested with an elevation of character which
claimed the respect even of its opponents. On the other hand, in
proportion as it became more earnest and less self-applauding, it became
more free-spoken; and members of it might be found who, from the mere
circumstance of remaining firm to their original professions, would in
the judgment of the world, as to their public acts, seem to have left it
for the Conservative camp. Thus, neither in its component parts nor in
its policy, was it the same in 1832, 1836, and 1841, as it was in 1845.

These last remarks will serve to throw light upon a matter personal to
myself, which I have introduced into my Narrative, and to which my
attention has been pointedly called, now that my Volume is coming to a
second edition.

It has been strongly urged upon me to re-consider the following passages
which occur in it: "The men who had driven me from Oxford were
distinctly the Liberals, it was they who had opened the attack upon
Tract 90," p. 203, and "I found no fault with the Liberals; they had
beaten me in a fair field," p. 214.

I am very unwilling to seem ungracious, or to cause pain in any quarter;
still I am sorry to say I cannot modify these statements. It is surely a
matter of historical fact that I left Oxford upon the University
proceedings of 1841; and in those proceedings, whether we look to the
Heads of Houses or the resident Masters, the leaders, if intellect and
influence make men such, were members of the Liberal party. Those who
did not lead, concurred or acquiesced in them,--I may say, felt a
satisfaction. I do not recollect any Liberal who was on my side on that
occasion. Excepting the Liberal, no other party, as a party, acted
against me. I am not complaining of them; I deserved nothing else at
their hands. They could not undo in 1845, even had they wished it, (and
there is no proof they did,) what they had done in 1841. In 1845, when I
had already given up the contest for four years, and my part in it had
passed into the hands of others, then some of those who were prominent
against me in 1841, feeling (what they had not felt in 1841) the danger
of driving a number of my followers to Rome, and joined by younger
friends who had come into University importance since 1841 and felt
kindly towards me, adopted a course more consistent with their
principles, and proceeded to shield from the zeal of the Hebdomadal
Board, not me, but, professedly, all parties through the
country,--Tractarians, Evangelicals, Liberals in general,--who had to
subscribe to the Anglican formularies, on the ground that those
formularies, rigidly taken, were, on some point or other, a difficulty
to all parties alike.

However, besides the historical fact, I can bear witness to my own
feeling at the time, and my feeling was this:--that those who in 1841
had considered it to be a duty to act against me, had then done their
worst. What was it to me what they were now doing in opposition to the
New Test proposed by the Hebdomadal Board? I owed them no thanks for
their trouble. I took no interest at all, in February, 1845, in the
proceedings of the Heads of Houses and of the Convocation. I felt myself
_dead_ as regarded my relations to the Anglican Church. My leaving it
was all but a matter of time. I believe I did not even thank my real
friends, the two Proctors, who in Convocation stopped by their Veto the
condemnation of Tract 90; nor did I make any acknowledgment to Mr.
Rogers, nor to Mr. James Mozley, nor, as I think, to Mr. Hussey, for
their pamphlets in my behalf. My frame of mind is best described by the
sentiment of the passage in Horace, which at the time I was fond of
quoting, as expressing my view of the relation that existed between the
Vice-Chancellor and myself.

  Rector Thebarum, quid me perferre patique
  Indignum cogas?" "Adimam bona." "Nempe pecus, rem,
  Lectos, argentum; tollas licet." "In manicis et
  Compedibus, sævo te sub custode tenebo." (_viz. the 39 Articles._)
  "_Ipse Deus, simul atque volam, me solvet._" Opinor,
  Hoc sentit: _Moriar. Mors ultima linea rerum est._

I conclude this notice of Liberalism in Oxford, and the party which was
antagonistic to it, with some propositions in detail, which, as a member
of the latter, and together with the High Church, I earnestly denounced
and abjured.

1. No religious tenet is important, unless reason shows it to be so.

    Therefore, e.g. the doctrine of the Athanasian Creed is not to
    be insisted on, unless it tends to convert the soul; and the
    doctrine of the Atonement is to be insisted on, if it does
    convert the soul.

2. No one can believe what he does not understand.

    Therefore, e.g. there are no mysteries in true religion.

3. No theological doctrine is any thing more than an opinion which
happens to be held by bodies of men.

    Therefore, e.g. no creed, as such, is necessary for salvation.

4. It is dishonest in a man to make an act of faith in what he has not
had brought home to him by actual proof.

    Therefore, e.g. the mass of men ought not absolutely to believe
    in the divine authority of the Bible.

5. It is immoral in a man to believe more than he can spontaneously
receive as being congenial to his moral and mental nature.

    Therefore, e.g. a given individual is not bound to believe in
    eternal punishment.

6. No revealed doctrines or precepts may reasonably stand in the way of
scientific conclusions.

    Therefore, e.g. Political Economy may reverse our Lord's
    declarations about poverty and riches, or a system of Ethics may
    teach that the highest condition of body is ordinarily essential
    to the highest state of mind.

7. Christianity is necessarily modified by the growth of civilization,
and the exigencies of times.

    Therefore, e.g. the Catholic priesthood, though necessary in the
    Middle Ages, may be superseded now.

8. There is a system of religion more simply true than Christianity as
it has ever been received.

    Therefore, e.g. we may advance that Christianity is the "corn of
    wheat" which has been dead for 1800 years, but at length will
    bear fruit; and that Mahometanism is the manly religion, and
    existing Christianity the womanish.

9. There is a right of Private Judgment: that is, there is no existing
authority on earth competent to interfere with the liberty of
individuals in reasoning and judging for themselves about the Bible and
its contents, as they severally please.

    Therefore, e.g. religious establishments requiring subscription
    are Anti-christian.

10. There are rights of conscience such, that every one may lawfully
advance a claim to profess and teach what is false and wrong in matters,
religious, social, and moral, provided that to his private conscience it
seems absolutely true and right.

    Therefore, e.g. individuals have a right to preach and practise
    fornication and polygamy.

11. There is no such thing as a national or state conscience.

    Therefore, e.g. no judgments can fall upon a sinful or infidel

12. The civil power has no positive duty, in a normal state of things,
to maintain religious truth.

    Therefore, e.g. blasphemy and sabbath-breaking are not rightly
    punishable by law.

13. Utility and expedience are the measure of political duty.

    Therefore, e.g. no punishment may be enacted, on the ground that
    God commands it: e.g. on the text, "Whoso sheddeth man's blood,
    by man shall his blood be shed."

14. The Civil Power may dispose of Church property without sacrilege.

    Therefore, e.g. Henry VIII. committed no sin in his spoliations.

15. The Civil Power has the right of ecclesiastical jurisdiction and

    Therefore, e.g. Parliament may impose articles of faith on the
    Church or suppress Dioceses.

16. It is lawful to rise in arms against legitimate princes.

    Therefore, e.g. the Puritans in the 17th century, and the French
    in the 18th, were justifiable in their Rebellion and Revolution

17. The people are the legitimate source of power.

    Therefore, e.g. Universal Suffrage is among the natural rights
    of man.

18. Virtue is the child of knowledge, and vice of ignorance.

    Therefore, e.g. education, periodical literature, railroad
    travelling, ventilation, drainage, and the arts of life, when
    fully carried out, serve to make a population moral and happy.

All of these propositions, and many others too, were familiar to me
thirty years ago, as in the number of the tenets of Liberalism, and,
while I gave into none of them except No. 12, and perhaps No. 11, and
partly No. 1, before I began to publish, so afterwards I wrote against
most of them in some part or other of my Anglican works.

If it is necessary to refer to a work, not simply my own, but of the
Tractarian school, which contains a similar protest, I should name the
_Lyra Apostolica_. This volume, which by accident has been left
unnoticed, except incidentally, in my Narrative, was collected together
from the pages of the "British Magazine," in which its contents
originally appeared, and published in a separate form, immediately after
Hurrell Froude's death in 1836. Its signatures, [Greek: a, b, g, d, e,
z], denote respectively as authors, Mr. Bowden, Mr. Hurrell Froude, Mr.
Keble, Mr. Newman, Mr. Robert Wilberforce, and Mr. Isaac Williams.

There is one poem on "Liberalism," beginning "Ye cannot halve the Gospel
of God's grace;" which bears out the account of Liberalism as above
given; and another upon "the Age to come," defining from its own point
of view the position and prospects of Liberalism.

       *       *       *       *       *

I need hardly say that the above Note is mainly historical. How far the
Liberal party of 1830-40 really held the above eighteen Theses, which I
attributed to them, and how far and in what sense I should oppose those
Theses now, could scarcely be explained without a separate Dissertation.



The writer, who gave occasion for the foregoing Narrative, was very
severe with me for what I had said about Miracles in the Preface to the
Life of St. Walburga. I observe therefore as follows:--

Catholics believe that miracles happen in any age of the Church, though
not for the same purposes, in the same number, or with the same
evidence, as in Apostolic times. The Apostles wrought them in evidence
of their divine mission; and with this object they have been sometimes
wrought by Evangelists of countries since, as even Protestants allow.
Hence we hear of them in the history of St. Gregory in Pontus, and St.
Martin in Gaul; and in their case, as in that of the Apostles, they were
both numerous and clear. As they are granted to Evangelists, so are they
granted, though in less measure and evidence, to other holy men; and as
holy men are not found equally at all times and in all places, therefore
miracles are in some places and times more than in others. And since,
generally, they are granted to faith and prayer, therefore in a country
in which faith and prayer abound, they will be more likely to occur,
than where and when faith and prayer are not; so that their occurrence
is irregular. And further, as faith and prayer obtain miracles, so still
more commonly do they gain from above the ordinary interventions of
Providence; and, as it is often very difficult to distinguish between a
providence and a miracle, and there will be more providences than
miracles, hence it will happen that many occurrences will be called
miraculous, which, strictly speaking, are not such, that is, not more
than providential mercies, or what are sometimes called "_grazie_" or

Persons, who believe all this, in accordance with Catholic teaching, as
I did and do, they, on the report of a miracle, will of necessity, the
necessity of good logic, be led to say, first, "It _may_ be," and
secondly, "But I must have _good evidence_ in order to believe it."

1. It _may_ be, because miracles take place in all ages; it must be
clearly _proved_, because perhaps after all it may be only a
providential mercy, or an exaggeration, or a mistake, or an imposture.
Well, this is precisely what I had said, which the writer, who has given
occasion to this Volume, considered so irrational. I had said, as he
quotes me, "In this day, and under our present circumstances, we can
only reply, that there is no reason why they should not be." Surely this
is good logic, _provided_ that miracles _do_ occur in all ages; and so
again I am logical in saying, "There is nothing, _primâ facie_, in the
miraculous accounts in question, to repel a _properly taught_ or
religiously disposed mind." What is the matter with this statement? My
assailant does not pretend to say _what_ the matter is, and he cannot;
but he expresses a rude, unmeaning astonishment. Accordingly, in the
passage which he quotes, I observe, "Miracles are the kind of facts
proper to ecclesiastical history, just as instances of sagacity or
daring, personal prowess, or crime, are the facts proper to secular
history." What is the harm of this?

2. But, though a miracle be conceivable, it has to be _proved_. _What_
has to be proved? (1.) That the event occurred as stated, and is not a
false report or an exaggeration. (2.) That it is clearly miraculous, and
not a mere providence or answer to prayer within the order of nature.
What is the fault of saying this? The inquiry is parallel to that which
is made about some extraordinary fact in secular history. Supposing I
hear that King Charles II. died a Catholic, I am led to say: It _may_
be, but what is your _proof_?

In my Essay on Miracles of the year 1826, I proposed three questions
about a professed miraculous occurrence: 1. is it antecedently
_probable_? 2. is it in its _nature_ certainly miraculous? 3. has it
sufficient _evidence_? To these three heads I had regard in my Essay of
1842; and under them I still wish to conduct the inquiry into the
miracles of Ecclesiastical History.

       *       *       *       *       *

So much for general principles; as to St. Walburga, though I have no
intention at all of denying that numerous miracles have been wrought by
her intercession, still, neither the Author of her Life, nor I, the
Editor, felt that we had grounds for binding ourselves to the belief of
certain alleged miracles in particular. I made, however, one exception;
it was the medicinal oil which flows from her relics. Now as to the
_verisimilitude_, the _miraculousness_, and the _fact_, of this
medicinal oil.

1. The _verisimilitude_. It is plain there is nothing extravagant in
this report of her relics having a supernatural virtue; and for this
reason, because there are such instances in Scripture, and Scripture
cannot be extravagant. For instance, a man was restored to life by
touching the relics of the Prophet Eliseus. The sacred text runs
thus:--"And Elisha died, and they buried him. And the bands of the
Moabites invaded the land at the coming in of the year. And it came to
pass, as they were burying a man, that, behold, they spied a band of
men; and they cast the man into the sepulchre of Elisha. And, when the
man was let down, _and touched the bones of Elisha, he revived_, and
stood upon his feet." Again, in the case of an inanimate substance,
which had touched a living Saint: "And God wrought _special miracles_ by
the hands of Paul; so that _from his body_ were brought unto the sick
_handkerchiefs or aprons_, and _the diseases departed from them_." And
again in the case of a pool: "An _Angel went down_ at a certain season
into the pool, and troubled the water; whosoever then first, after the
troubling of the water, stepped in, _was made whole of whatsoever
disease_ he had." 2 Kings [4 Kings] xiii. 20, 21. Acts xix. 11, 12. John
v. 4. Therefore there is nothing _extravagant_ in the _character_ of the

2. Next, the _matter of fact_:--_is_ there an oil flowing from St.
Walburga's tomb, which is medicinal? To this question I confined myself
in my Preface. Of the accounts of medieval miracles, I said that there
was no _extravagance_ in their _general character_, but I could not
affirm that there was always _evidence_ for them. I could not simply
accept them as _facts_, but I could not reject them in their
_nature_;--they _might_ be true, for they were not impossible; but they
were _not proved_ to be true, because there was not trustworthy
testimony. However, as to St. Walburga, I repeat, I made _one_
exception, the fact of the medicinal oil, since for that miracle there
was distinct and successive testimony. And then I went on to give a
chain of witnesses. It was my duty to state what those witnesses said in
their very words; so I gave the testimonies in full, tracing them from
the Saint's death. I said, "She is one of the principal Saints of her
age and country." Then I quoted Basnage, a Protestant, who says, "Six
writers are extant, who have employed themselves in relating the deeds
or miracles of Walburga." Then I said that her "renown was not the mere
natural _growth_ of ages, but begins with the very century of the
Saint's death." Then I observed that only two miracles seem to have been
"distinctly reported of her as occurring in her lifetime; and they were
handed down apparently by tradition." Also, that such miracles are said
to have commenced about A.D. 777. Then I spoke of the medicinal oil as
having testimony to it in 893, in 1306, after 1450, in 1615, and in
1620. Also, I said that Mabillon seems not to have believed some of her
miracles; and that the earliest witness had got into trouble with his
Bishop. And so I left the matter, as a question to be decided by
evidence, not deciding any thing myself.

What was the harm of all this? but my Critic muddled it together in a
most extraordinary manner, and I am far from sure that he knew himself
the definite categorical charge which he intended it to convey against
me. One of his remarks is, "What has become of the holy oil for the last
240 years, Dr. Newman does not say," p. 25. Of course I did not, because
I did not know; I gave the evidence as I found it; he assumes that I had
a point to prove, and then asks why I did not make the evidence larger
than it was.

I can tell him more about it now: the oil still flows; I have had some
of it in my possession; it is medicinal still. This leads to the third

3. Its _miraculousness_. On this point, since I have been in the
Catholic Church, I have found there is a difference of opinion. Some
persons consider that the oil is the natural produce of the rock, and
has ever flowed from it; others, that by a divine gift it flows from the
relics; and others, allowing that it now comes naturally from the rock,
are disposed to hold that it was in its origin miraculous, as was the
virtue of the pool of Bethsaida.

This point must be settled of course before the virtue of the oil can be
ascribed to the sanctity of St. Walburga; for myself, I neither have,
nor ever have had, the means of going into the question; but I will take
the opportunity of its having come before me, to make one or two
remarks, supplemental of what I have said on other occasions.

1. I frankly confess that the present advance of science tends to make
it probable that various facts take place, and have taken place, in the
order of nature, which hitherto have been considered by Catholics as
simply supernatural.

2. Though I readily make this admission, it must not be supposed in
consequence that I am disposed to grant at once, that every event was
natural in point of fact, which _might_ have taken place by the laws of
nature; for it is obvious, no Catholic can bind the Almighty to act only
in one and the same way, or to the observance always of His own laws. An
event which is possible in the way of nature, is certainly possible too
to Divine Power without the sequence of natural cause and effect at all.
A conflagration, to take a parallel, may be the work of an incendiary,
or the result of a flash of lightning; nor would a jury think it safe to
find a man guilty of arson, if a dangerous thunderstorm was raging at
the very time when the fire broke out. In like manner, upon the
hypothesis that a miraculous dispensation is in operation, a recovery
from diseases to which medical science is equal, may nevertheless in
matter of fact have taken place, not by natural means, but by a
supernatural interposition. That the Lawgiver always acts through His
own laws, is an assumption, of which I never saw proof. In a given case,
then, the possibility of assigning a human cause for an event does not
_ipso facto_ prove that it is not miraculous.

3. So far, however, is plain, that, till some _experimentum crucis_ can
be found, such as to be decisive against the natural cause or the
supernatural, an occurrence of this kind will as little convince an
unbeliever that there has been a divine interference in the case, as it
will drive the Catholic to admit that there has been no interference at

4. Still there is this gain accruing to the Catholic cause from the
larger views we now possess of the operation of natural causes, viz.
that our opponents will not in future be so ready as hitherto, to impute
fraud and falsehood to our priests and their witnesses, on the ground of
their pretending or reporting things that are incredible. Our opponents
have again and again accused us of false witness, on account of
statements which they now allow are either true, or may have been true.
They account indeed for the strange facts very differently from us; but
still they allow that facts they were. It is a great thing to have our
characters cleared; and we may reasonably hope that, the next time our
word is vouched for occurrences which appear to be miraculous, our facts
will be investigated, not our testimony impugned.

5. Even granting that certain occurrences, which we have hitherto
accounted miraculous, have not absolutely a claim to be so considered,
nevertheless they constitute an argument still in behalf of Revelation
and the Church. Providences, or what are called _grazie_, though they do
not rise to the order of miracles, yet, if they occur again and again in
connexion with the same persons, institutions, or doctrines, may supply
a cumulative evidence of the fact of a supernatural presence in the
quarter in which they are found. I have already alluded to this point in
my Essay on Ecclesiastical Miracles, and I have a particular reason, as
will presently be seen, for referring here to what I said in the course
of it.

       *       *       *       *       *

In that Essay, after bringing its main argument to an end, I append to
it a review of "the evidence for particular alleged miracles." "It does
not strictly fall within the scope of the Essay," I observe, "to
pronounce upon the truth or falsehood of this or that miraculous
narrative, as it occurs in ecclesiastical history; but only to furnish
such general considerations, as may be useful in forming a decision in
particular cases," p. cv. However, I thought it right to go farther and
"to set down the evidence for and against certain miracles as we meet
with them," ibid. In discussing these miracles separately, I make the
following remarks, to which I have just been referring.

After discussing the alleged miracle of the Thundering Legion, I
observe:--"Nor does it concern us much to answer the objection, that
there is nothing strictly miraculous in such an occurrence, because
sudden thunderclouds after drought are not unfrequent; for, I would
answer, Grant me such miracles ordinarily in the early Church, and I
will ask no other; grant that, upon prayer, benefits are vouchsafed,
deliverances are effected, unhoped-for results obtained, sicknesses
cured, tempests laid, pestilences put to flight, famines remedied,
judgments inflicted, and there will be no need of analyzing the causes,
whether supernatural or natural, to which they are to be referred. They
may, or they may not, in this or that case, follow or surpass the laws
of nature, and they may do so plainly or doubtfully, but the common
sense of mankind will call them miraculous; for by a miracle is
popularly meant, whatever be its formal definition, an event which
impresses upon the mind the immediate presence of the Moral Governor of
the world. He may sometimes act through nature, sometimes beyond or
against it; but those who admit the fact of such interferences, will
have little difficulty in admitting also their strictly miraculous
character, if the circumstances of the case require it, and those who
deny miracles to the early Church will be equally strenuous against
allowing her the grace of such intimate influence (if we may so speak)
upon the course of divine Providence, as is here in question, even
though it be not miraculous."--p. cxxi.

And again, speaking of the death of Arius: "But after all, was it a
miracle? for, if not, we are labouring at a proof of which nothing
comes. The more immediate answer to this question has already been
suggested several times. When a Bishop with his flock prays night and
day against a heretic, and at length begs of God to take him away, and
when he _is_ suddenly taken away, almost at the moment of his triumph,
and that by a death awfully significant, from its likeness to one
recorded in Scripture, is it not trifling to ask whether such an
occurrence comes up to the definition of a miracle? The question is not
whether it is formally a miracle, but whether it is an event, the like
of which persons, who deny that miracles continue, will consent that the
Church should be considered still able to perform. If they are willing
to allow to the Church such extraordinary protection, it is for them to
draw the line to the satisfaction of people in general, between these
and strictly miraculous events; if, on the other hand, they deny their
occurrence in the times of the Church, then there is sufficient reason
for our appealing here to the history of Arius in proof of the
affirmative."--p. clxxii.

These remarks, thus made upon the Thundering Legion and the death of
Arius, must be applied, in consequence of investigations made since the
date of my Essay, to the apparent miracle wrought in favour of the
African confessors in the Vandal persecution. Their tongues were cut out
by the Arian tyrant, and yet they spoke as before. In my Essay I
insisted on this fact as being strictly miraculous. Among other remarks
(referring to the instances adduced by Middleton and others in
disparagement of the miracle, viz. of "a girl born without a tongue, who
yet talked as distinctly and easily, as if she had enjoyed the full
benefit of that organ," and of a boy who lost his tongue at the ago of
eight or nine, yet retained his speech, whether perfectly or not,) I
said, "Does Middleton mean to say, that, if certain of men lost their
tongues _at the command of a tyrant_ for the _sake of their religion_,
and then spoke _as plainly_ as before, nay _if only one person was so
mutilated_ and so gifted, it would not be a miracle?"--p. ccx. And I
enlarged upon the minute details of the fact as reported to us by
eye-witnesses and contemporaries. "Out of the seven writers adduced, six
are contemporaries; three, if not four, are eye-witnesses of the
miracle. One reports from an eye-witness, and one testifies to a fervent
record at the burial-place of the subjects of it. All seven were living,
or had been staying, at one or other of the two places which are
mentioned as their abode. One is a Pope, a second a Catholic Bishop, a
third a Bishop of a schismatical party, a fourth an emperor, a fifth a
soldier, a politician, and a suspected infidel, a sixth a statesman and
courtier, a seventh a rhetorician and philosopher. 'He cut out the
tongues by the roots,' says Victor, Bishop of Vito; 'I perceived the
tongues entirely gone by the roots,' says Æneas; 'as low down as the
throat,' says Procopius; 'at the roots,' say Justinian and St. Gregory;
'he spoke like an educated man, without impediment,' says Victor of
Vito; 'with articulateness,' says Æneas; 'better than before;' 'they
talked without any impediment,' says Procopius; 'speaking with perfect
voice,' says Marcellinus; 'they spoke perfectly, even to the end,' says
the second Victor; 'the words were formed, full, and perfect,' says St.
Gregory."--p. ccviii.

However, a few years ago an Article appeared in "Notes and Queries" (No.
for May 22, 1858), in which various evidence was adduced to show that
the tongue is not necessary for articulate speech.

1. Col. Churchill, in his "Lebanon," speaking of the cruelties of
Djezzar Pacha, in extracting to the root the tongues of some Emirs,
adds, "It is a curious fact, however, that the tongues grow again
sufficiently for the purposes of speech."

2. Sir John Malcolm, in his "Sketches of Persia," speaks of Zâb, Khan of
Khisht, who was condemned to lose his tongue. "This mandate," he says,
"was imperfectly executed, and the loss of half this member deprived him
of speech. Being afterwards persuaded that its being cut close to the
root would enable him to speak so as to be understood, he submitted to
the operation; and the effect has been, that his voice, though
indistinct and thick, is yet intelligible to persons accustomed to
converse with him.... I am not an anatomist, and I cannot therefore give
a reason, why a man, who could not articulate with half a tongue, should
speak when he had none at all; but the facts are as stated."

3. And Sir John McNeill says, "In answer to your inquiries about the
powers of speech retained by persons who have had their tongues cut out,
I can state from personal observation, that several persons whom I knew
in Persia, who had been subjected to that punishment, spoke so
intelligibly as to be able to transact important business.... The
conviction in Persia is universal, that the power of speech is destroyed
by merely cutting off the tip of the tongue; and is to a useful extent
restored by cutting off another portion as far back as a perpendicular
section can be made of the portion that is free from attachment at the
lower surface.... I never had to meet with a person who had suffered
this punishment, who could not speak so as to be quite intelligible to
his familiar associates."

       *       *       *       *       *

I should not be honest, if I professed to be simply converted, by these
testimonies, to the belief that there was nothing miraculous in the case
of the African confessors. It is quite as fair to be sceptical on one
side of the question as on the other; and if Gibbon is considered worthy
of praise for his stubborn incredulity in receiving the evidence for
this miracle, I do not see why I am to be blamed, if I wish to be quite
sure of the full appositeness of the recent evidence which is brought to
its disadvantage. Questions of fact cannot be disproved by analogies or
presumptions; the inquiry must be made into the particular case in all
its parts, as it comes before us. Meanwhile, I fully allow that the
points of evidence brought in disparagement of the miracle are _primâ
facie_ of such cogency, that, till they are proved to be irrelevant,
Catholics are prevented from appealing to it for controversial purposes.



The professed basis of the charge of lying and equivocation made against
me, and, in my person, against the Catholic clergy, was, as I have
already noticed in the Preface, a certain Sermon of mine on "Wisdom and
Innocence," being the 20th in a series of "Sermons on Subjects of the
Day," written, preached, and published while I was an Anglican. Of this
Sermon my accuser spoke thus in his Pamphlet:--

    "It is occupied entirely with the attitude of 'the world' to
    'Christians' and 'the Church.' By the world appears to be
    signified, especially, the Protestant public of these realms;
    what Dr. Newman means by Christians, and the Church, he has not
    left in doubt; for in the preceding Sermon he says: 'But if the
    truth must be spoken, what are the humble monk and the holy nun,
    and other regulars, as they are called, but Christians after the
    very pattern given us in Scripture, &c.'.... This is his
    definition of Christians. And in the Sermon itself, he
    sufficiently defines what he means by 'the Church,' in two notes
    of her character, which he shall give in his own words: 'What,
    for instance, though we grant that sacramental confession and
    the celibacy of the clergy do tend to consolidate the body
    politic in the relation of rulers and subjects, or, in other
    words, to aggrandize the priesthood? for how can the Church be
    one body without such relation?'"--Pp. 8, 9.

He then proceeded to analyze and comment on it at great length, and to
criticize severely the method and tone of my Sermons generally. Among
other things, he said:--

    "What, then, did the Sermon _mean_? Why was it preached? To
    insinuate that a Church which had sacramental confession and a
    celibate clergy was the only true Church? Or to insinuate that
    the admiring young gentlemen who listened to him stood to their
    fellow-countrymen in the relation of the early Christians to the
    heathen Romans? Or that Queen Victoria's Government was to the
    Church of England what Nero's or Dioclesian's was to the Church
    of Rome? It may have been so. I know that men used to suspect
    Dr. Newman,--I have been inclined to do so myself,--of writing a
    whole Sermon, not for the sake of the text or of the matter, but
    for the sake of one single passing hint--one phrase, one
    epithet, one little barbed arrow, which, as he swept
    magnificently past on the stream of his calm eloquence,
    seemingly unconscious of all presences, save those unseen, he
    delivered unheeded, as with his finger-tip, to the very heart of
    an initiated hearer, never to be withdrawn again. I do not blame
    him for that. It is one of the highest triumphs of oratoric
    power, and may be employed honestly and fairly by any person who
    has the skill to do it honestly and fairly; but then, Why did he
    entitle his Sermon 'Wisdom and Innocence?'

    "What, then, could I think that Dr. Newman _meant_? I found a
    preacher bidding Christians imitate, to some undefined point,
    the 'arts' of the basest of animals, and of men, and of the
    devil himself. I found him, by a strange perversion of
    Scripture, insinuating that St. Paul's conduct and manner were
    such as naturally to bring down on him the reputation of being a
    crafty deceiver. I found him--horrible to say it--even hinting
    the same of one greater than St. Paul. I found him denying or
    explaining away the existence of that Priestcraft, which is a
    notorious fact to every honest student of history, and
    justifying (as far as I can understand him) that double dealing
    by which prelates, in the middle age, too often played off
    alternately the sovereign against the people, and the people
    against the sovereign, careless which was in the right, so long
    as their own power gained by the move. I found him actually
    using of such (and, as I thought, of himself and his party
    likewise) the words 'They yield outwardly; to assent inwardly
    were to betray the faith. Yet they are called deceitful and
    double-dealing, because they do as much as they can, and not
    more than they may.' I found him telling Christians that they
    will always seem 'artificial,' and 'wanting in openness and
    manliness;' that they will always be 'a mystery' to the world,
    and that the world will always think them rogues; and bidding
    them glory in what the world (i.e. the rest of their countrymen)
    disown, and say with Mawworm, 'I like to be despised.'

    "Now, how was I to know that the preacher, who had the
    reputation of being the most acute man of his generation, and of
    having a specially intimate acquaintance with the weaknesses of
    the human heart, was utterly blind to the broad meaning and the
    plain practical result of a Sermon like this, delivered before
    fanatic and hot-headed young men, who hung upon his every word?
    that he did not foresee that they would think that they obeyed
    him by becoming affected, artificial, sly, shifty, ready for
    concealments and equivocations?" &c. &c.--Pp. 14-16.

My accuser asked in this passage what did the Sermon _mean_, and why was
it preached. I will here answer this question; and with this view will
speak, first of the _matter_ of the Sermon, then of its _subject_, then
of its _circumstances_.

1. It was one of the last six Sermons which I wrote when I was an
Anglican. It was one of the five Sermons I preached in St. Mary's
between Christmas and Easter, 1843, the year when I gave up my Living.
The MS. of the Sermon is destroyed; but I believe, and my memory too
bears me out, as far as it goes, that the sentence in question about
Celibacy and Confession, of which this writer would make so much, _was
not preached at all_. The Volume, in which this Sermon is found, was
published _after_ that I had given up St. Mary's, when I had no call on
me to restrain the expression of any thing which I might hold: and I
stated an important fact about it in the Advertisement, in these

    "In preparing [these Sermons] for publication, _a few words and
    sentences_ have in several places been _added_, which will be
    found to express more _of private or personal opinion_, than it
    was expedient to introduce into the _instruction_ delivered in
    Church to a parochial Congregation. Such introduction, however,
    seems unobjectionable in the case of compositions, which are
    _detached_ from the sacred place and service to which they once
    belonged, and _submitted to the reason_ and judgment of the
    general reader."

This Volume of Sermons then cannot be criticized at all as
_preachments_; they are _essays_; essays of a man who, at the time of
publishing them, was _not_ a preacher. Such passages, as that in
question, are just the very ones which I added _upon_ my publishing
them; and, as I always was on my guard in the pulpit against saying any
thing which looked towards Rome, I shall believe that I did not preach
the obnoxious sentence till some one is found to testify that he heard

At the same time I cannot conceive why the mention of Sacramental
Confession, or of Clerical Celibacy, had I made it, was inconsistent
with the position of an Anglican Clergyman. For Sacramental Confession
and Absolution actually form a portion of the Anglican Visitation of the
Sick; and though the 32nd Article says that "Bishops, priests, and
deacons, are not _commanded_ by God's law either to vow the state of
single life or to abstain from marriage," and "therefore it is _lawful_
for them to marry," this proposition I did not dream of denying, nor is
it inconsistent with St. Paul's doctrine, which I held, that it is
"_good_ to abide even as he," i.e. in celibacy.

But I have more to say on this point. This writer says, "I know that men
used to suspect Dr. Newman,--I have been inclined to do so myself,--of
_writing a whole Sermon, not for the sake of the text or of the matter_,
but for the sake of one simple passing hint,--one phrase, one epithet."
Now observe; can there be a plainer testimony borne to the practical
character of my Sermons at St. Mary's than this gratuitous insinuation?
Many a preacher of Tractarian doctrine has been accused of not letting
his parishioners alone, and of teasing them with his private theological
notions. The same report was spread about me twenty years ago as this
writer spreads now, and the world believed that my Sermons at St. Mary's
were full of red-hot Tractarianism. Then strangers came to hear me
preach, and were astonished at their own disappointment. I recollect the
wife of a great prelate from a distance coming to hear me, and then
expressing her surprise to find that I preached nothing but a plain
humdrum Sermon. I recollect how, when on the Sunday before Commemoration
one year, a number of strangers came to hear me, and I preached in my
usual way, residents in Oxford, of high position, were loud in their
satisfaction that on a great occasion, I had made a simple failure, for
after all there was nothing in the Sermon to hear. Well, but they were
not going to let me off, for all my common-sense view of duty.
Accordingly they got up the charitable theory which this Writer revives.
They said that there was a double purpose in those plain addresses of
mine, and that my Sermons were never so artful as when they seemed
common-place; that there were sentences which redeemed their apparent
simplicity and quietness. So they watched during the delivery of a
Sermon, which to them was too practical to be useful, for the concealed
point of it, which they could at least imagine, if they could not
discover. "Men used to suspect Dr. Newman," he says, "of writing a
_whole_ Sermon, _not_ for the sake of _the text or of the matter_, but
for the sake of one single passing hint, ... _one_ phrase, _one_
epithet, _one_ little barbed arrow, which, as he _swept magnificently_
past on the stream of his calm eloquence, _seemingly_ unconscious of all
presences, save those unseen, he delivered unheeded," &c. To all
appearance, he says, I was "unconscious of all presences." He is not
able to deny that the "_whole_ Sermon" had the _appearance_ of being
"_for the sake_ of the text and matter;" therefore he suggests that
perhaps it wasn't.

       *       *       *       *       *

2. And now as to the subject of the Sermon. The Sermons of which the
Volume consists are such as are, more or less, exceptions to the rule
which I ordinarily observed, as to the subjects which I introduced into
the pulpit of St. Mary's. They are not purely ethical or doctrinal. They
were for the most part caused by circumstances of the day or of the
moment, and they belong to various years. One was written in 1832, two
in 1836, two in 1838, five in 1840, five in 1841, four in 1842, seven in
1843. Many of them are engaged on one subject, viz. in viewing the
Church in its relation to the world. By the world was meant, not simply
those multitudes which were not in the Church, but the existing body of
human society, whether in the Church or not, whether Catholics,
Protestants, Greeks, or Mahometans, theists or idolaters, as being ruled
by principles, maxims, and instincts of their own, that is, of an
unregenerate nature, whatever their supernatural privileges might be,
greater or less, according to their form of religion. This view of the
relation of the Church to the world as taken apart from questions of
ecclesiastical politics, as they may be called, is often brought out in
my Sermons. Two occur to me at once; No. 3 of my Plain Sermons, which
was written in 1829, and No. 15 of my Third Volume of Parochial, written
in 1835. On the other hand, by Church I meant,--in common with all
writers connected with the Tract Movement, whatever their shades of
opinion, and with the whole body of English divines, except those of the
Puritan or Evangelical School,--the whole of Christendom, from the
Apostles' time till now, whatever their later divisions into Latin,
Greek, and Anglican. I have explained this view of the subject above at
pp. 69-71 of this Volume. When then I speak, in the particular Sermon
before us, of the members, or the rulers, or the action of "the Church,"
I mean neither the Latin, nor the Greek, nor the English, taken by
itself, but of the whole Church as one body: of Italy as one with
England, of the Saxon or Norman as one with the Caroline Church. _This_
was specially the one Church, and the points in which one branch or one
period differed from another were not and could not be Notes of the
Church, because Notes necessarily belong to the whole of the Church
every where and always.

This being my doctrine as to the relation of the Church to the world, I
laid down in the Sermon three principles concerning it, and there left
the matter. The first is, that Divine Wisdom had framed for its action
laws, which man, if left to himself, would have antecedently pronounced
to be the worst possible for its success, and which in all ages have
been called by the world, as they were in the Apostles' days,
"foolishness;" that man ever relies on physical and material force, and
on carnal inducements as Mahomet with his sword and his houris, or
indeed almost as that theory of religion, called, since the Sermon was
written, "muscular Christianity;" but that our Lord, on the contrary,
has substituted meekness for haughtiness, passiveness for violence, and
innocence for craft: and that the event has shown the high wisdom of
such an economy, for it has brought to light a set of natural laws,
unknown before, by which the seeming paradox that weakness should be
stronger than might, and simplicity than worldly policy, is readily

Secondly, I said that men of the world, judging by the event, and not
recognizing the secret causes of the success, viz. a higher order of
natural laws,--natural, though their source and action were
supernatural, (for "the meek inherit the earth," by means of a meekness
which comes from above,)--these men, I say, concluded, that the success
which they witnessed must arise from some evil secret which the world
had not mastered,--by means of magic, as they said in the first ages, by
cunning as they say now. And accordingly they thought that the humility
and inoffensiveness of Christians, or of Churchmen, was a mere pretence
and blind to cover the real causes of that success, which Christians
could explain and would not; and that they were simply hypocrites.

Thirdly, I suggested that shrewd ecclesiastics, who knew very well that
there was neither magic nor craft in the matter, and, from their
intimate acquaintance with what actually went on within the Church,
discerned what were the real causes of its success, were of course under
the temptation of substituting reason for conscience, and, instead of
simply obeying the command, were led to do good that good might come,
that is, to act _in order_ to secure success, and not from a motive of
faith. Some, I said, did yield to the temptation more or less, and their
motives became mixed; and in this way the world in a more subtle shape
had got into the Church; and hence it had come to pass, that, looking at
its history from first to last, we could not possibly draw the line
between good and evil there, and say either that every thing was to be
defended, or certain things to be condemned. I expressed the difficulty,
which I supposed to be inherent in the Church, in the following words. I
said, "_Priestcraft has ever been considered the badge_, and its
imputation is a kind of Note of the Church: and _in part indeed truly_,
because the presence of powerful enemies, and the sense of their own
weakness, _has sometimes tempted Christians to the abuse, instead of the
use of Christian wisdom, to be wise without being harmless_; but partly,
nay, for the most part, not truly, but slanderously, and merely because
the world called their wisdom craft, when it was found to be a match for
its own numbers and power."

Such is the substance of the Sermon: and as to the main drift of it, it
was this; that I was, there and elsewhere, scrutinizing the course of
the Church as a whole, as if philosophically, as an historical
phenomenon, and observing the laws on which it was conducted. Hence the
Sermon, or Essay as it more truly is, is written in a dry and
unimpassioned way: it shows as little of human warmth of feeling as a
Sermon of Bishop Butler's. Yet, under that calm exterior there was a
deep and keen sensitiveness, as I shall now proceed to show.

       *       *       *       *       *

3. If I mistake not, it was written with a secret thought about myself.
Every one preaches according to his frame of mind, at the time of
preaching. One heaviness especially oppressed me at that season, which
this Writer, twenty years afterwards, has set himself with a good will
to renew: it arose from the sense of the base calumnies which were
heaped upon me on all sides. It is worth observing that this Sermon is
exactly contemporaneous with the report spread by a Bishop (_vid. supr._
p. 181), that I had advised a clergyman converted to Catholicism to
retain his Living. This report was in circulation in February 1843, and
my Sermon was preached on the 19th. In the trouble of mind into which I
was thrown by such calumnies as this, I gained, while I reviewed the
history of the Church, at once an argument and a consolation. My
argument was this: if I, who knew my own innocence, was so blackened by
party prejudice, perhaps those high rulers and those servants of the
Church, in the many ages which intervened between the early Nicene times
and the present, who were laden with such grievous accusations, were
innocent also; and this reflection served to make me tender towards
those great names of the past, to whom weaknesses or crimes were
imputed, and reconciled me to difficulties in ecclesiastical
proceedings, which there were no means now of properly explaining. And
the sympathy thus excited for them, re-acted on myself, and I found
comfort in being able to put myself under the shadow of those who had
suffered as I was suffering, and who seemed to promise me their
recompense, since I had a fellowship in their trial. In a letter to my
Bishop at the time of Tract 90, part of which I have quoted, I said that
I had ever tried to "keep innocency;" and now two years had passed since
then, and men were louder and louder in heaping on me the very charges,
which this Writer repeats out of my Sermon, of "fraud and cunning,"
"craftiness and deceitfulness," "double-dealing," "priestcraft," of
being "mysterious, dark, subtle, designing," when I was all the time
conscious to myself, in my degree, and after my measure, of "sobriety,
self-restraint, and control of word and feeling." I had had experience
how my past success had been imputed to "secret management;" and how,
when I had shown surprise at that success, that surprise again was
imputed to "deceit;" and how my honest heartfelt submission to authority
had been called, as it was called in a Bishop's charge abroad, "mystic
humility;" and how my silence was called an "hypocrisy;" and my
faithfulness to my clerical engagements a secret correspondence with the
enemy. And I found a way of destroying my sensitiveness about these
things which jarred upon my sense of justice, and otherwise would have
been too much for me, by the contemplation of a large law of the Divine
Dispensation, and felt myself more and more able to bear in my own
person a present trial, of which in my past writings I had expressed an

For this feeling and thus speaking this Writer compares me to "Mawworm."
"I found him telling Christians," he says, "that they will always seem
'artificial,' and 'wanting in openness and manliness;' that they will
always be 'a mystery' to the world; and that the world will always think
them rogues; and bidding them glory in what the world (that is, the rest
of their fellow-countrymen) disown, and say with Mawworm, 'I like to be
despised.' Now how was I to know that the preacher ... was utterly blind
to the broad meaning and the plain practical result of a Sermon like
this delivered before fanatic and hot-headed young men, who hung upon
his every word?"--Fanatic and hot-headed young men, who hung on my every
word! If he had undertaken to write a history, and not a romance, he
would have easily found out, as I have said above, that from 1841 I had
severed myself from the younger generation of Oxford, that Dr. Pusey and
I had then closed our theological meetings at his house, that I had
brought my own weekly evening parties to an end, that I preached only by
fits and starts at St. Mary's, so that the attendance of young men was
broken up, that in those very weeks from Christmas till over Easter,
during which this Sermon was preached, I was but five times in the
pulpit there. He would have found, that it was written at a time when I
was shunned rather than sought, when I had great sacrifices in
anticipation, when I was thinking much of myself; that I was ruthlessly
tearing myself away from my own followers, and that, in the musings of
that Sermon, I was at the very utmost only delivering a testimony in my
behalf for time to come, not sowing my rhetoric broadcast for the chance
of present sympathy.

Again, he says: "I found him actually using of such [prelates], (and, as
I thought, of himself and his party likewise,) the words 'They yield
outwardly; to assent inwardly were to betray the faith. Yet they are
called deceitful and double-dealing, because they do as much as they
can, not more than they may.'" This too is a proof of my duplicity! Let
this writer, in his dealings with some one else, go just a little
further than he has gone with me; and let him get into a court of law
for libel; and let him be convicted; and let him still fancy that his
libel, though a libel, was true, and let us then see whether he will not
in such a case "yield outwardly," without assenting internally; and then
again whether we should please him, if we called him "deceitful and
double-dealing," because "he did as much as he could, not more than he
ought to do." But Tract 90 will supply a real illustration of what I
meant. I yielded to the Bishops in outward act, viz. in not defending
the Tract, and in closing the Series; but, not only did I not assent
inwardly to any condemnation of it, but I opposed myself to the
proposition of a condemnation on the part of authority. Yet I was then
by the public called "deceitful and double-dealing," as this Writer
calls me now, "because I did as much as I felt I could do, and not more
than I felt I could honestly do." Many were the publications of the day
and the private letters, which accused me of shuffling, because I closed
the Series of Tracts, yet kept the Tracts on sale, as if I ought to
comply not only with what my Bishop asked, but with what he did not ask,
and perhaps did not wish. However, such teaching, according to this
Writer, was likely to make young men "suspect, that truth was not a
virtue for its own sake, but only for the sake of the spread of
'Catholic opinions,' and the 'salvation of their own souls;' and that
cunning was the weapon which heaven had allowed to them to defend
themselves against the persecuting Protestant public."--p. 16.

And now I draw attention to a further point. He says, "How was I to know
that the preacher ... did not foresee, that [fanatic and hot-headed
young men] would think that they obeyed him, by becoming affected,
artificial, sly, shifty, ready for concealments and _equivocations_?"
"How should he know!" What! I suppose that we are to think every man a
knave till he is proved not to be such. Know! had he no friend to tell
him whether I was "affected" or "artificial" myself? Could he not have
done better than impute _equivocations_ to me, at a time when I was in
no sense answerable for the _amphibologia_ of the Roman casuists? Had he
a single fact which belongs to me personally or by profession to couple
my name with equivocation in 1843? "How should he know" that I was not
sly, smooth, artificial, non-natural! he should know by that common
manly frankness, by which we put confidence in others, till they are
proved to have forfeited it; he should know it by my own words in that
very Sermon, in which I say it is best to be natural, and that reserve
is at best but an unpleasant necessity. For I say there expressly:--

    "I do not deny that there is something very engaging in a frank
    and unpretending manner; some persons have it more than others;
    in _some persons it is a great grace_. But it must be
    recollected that I am speaking of _times of persecution and
    oppression_ to Christians, such as the text foretells; and then
    surely frankness will become nothing else than indignation at
    the oppressor, and vehement speech, if it is permitted.
    Accordingly, as persons have deep feelings, so they will find
    the necessity of self-control, lest they should say what they
    ought not."

He sums up thus:

    "If [Dr. Newman] would ... persist (as in this Sermon) in
    dealing with matters dark, offensive, doubtful, sometimes
    actually forbidden, at least according to the notions of the
    great majority of English Churchmen; if he would always do so in
    a tentative, paltering way, seldom or never letting the world
    know how much he believed, how far he intended to go; if, in a
    word, his method of teaching was a suspicious one, what wonder
    if the minds of men were filled with suspicions of him?"--p. 17.

Now, in the course of my Narrative, I have frankly admitted that I was
tentative in such of my works as fairly allowed of the introduction into
them of religious inquiry; but he is speaking of my Sermons; where,
then, is his proof that in my Sermons I dealt in matters dark,
offensive, doubtful, actually forbidden? He must show that I was
tentative in my Sermons; and he has the range of eight volumes to gather
evidence in. As to the ninth, my University Sermons, of course I was
tentative in them; but not because "I would seldom or never let the
world know how much I believed, or how far I intended to go;" but
because University Sermons are commonly, and allowably, of the nature of
disquisitions, as preached before a learned body; and because in deep
subjects, which had not been fully investigated, I said as much as I
believed, and about as far as I saw I could go; and a man cannot do
more; and I account no man to be a philosopher who attempts to do more.



I have here an opportunity of preserving, what otherwise would be lost,
the Catalogue of English Saints which I formed, as preparatory to the
Series of their Lives which was begun in the above years. It is but a
first Essay, and has many obvious imperfections; but it may be useful to
others as a step towards a complete hagiography for England. For
instance St. Osberga is omitted; I suppose because it was not easy to
learn any thing about her. Boniface of Canterbury is inserted, though
passed over by the Bollandists on the ground of the absence of proof of
a _cultus_ having been paid to him. The Saints of Cornwall were too
numerous to be attempted. Among the men of note, not Saints, King Edward
II. is included from piety towards the founder of Oriel College. With
these admissions I present my Paper to the reader.

    _Preparing for Publication, in Periodical Numbers, in small 8vo,
    The Lives of the English Saints, Edited by the Rev. John Henry
    Newman, B.D., Fellow of Oriel College._

    It is the compensation of the disorders and perplexities of
    these latter times of the Church that we have the history of the
    foregoing. We indeed of this day have been reserved to witness a
    disorganization of the City of God, which it never entered into
    the minds of the early believers to imagine: but we are
    witnesses also of its triumphs and of its luminaries through
    those many ages which have brought about the misfortunes which
    at present overshadow it. If they were blessed who lived in
    primitive times, and saw the fresh traces of their Lord, and
    heard the echoes of Apostolic voices, blessed too are we whose
    special portion it is to see that same Lord revealed in His
    Saints. The wonders of His grace in the soul of man, its
    creative power, its inexhaustible resources, its manifold
    operation, all this we know, as they knew it not. They never
    heard the names of St. Gregory, St. Bernard, St. Francis, and
    St. Louis. In fixing our thoughts then, as in an undertaking
    like the present, on the History of the Saints, we are but
    availing ourselves of that solace and recompense of our peculiar
    trials which has been provided for our need by our Gracious

    And there are special reasons at this time for recurring to the
    Saints of our own dear and glorious, most favoured, yet most
    erring and most unfortunate England. Such a recurrence may serve
    to make us love our country better, and on truer grounds, than
    heretofore; to teach us to invest her territory, her cities and
    villages, her hills and springs, with sacred associations; to
    give us an insight into her present historical position in the
    course of the Divine Dispensation; to instruct us in the
    capabilities of the English character; and to open upon us the
    duties and the hopes to which that Church is heir, which was in
    former times the Mother of St. Boniface and St. Ethelreda.

    Even a selection or specimens of the Hagiology of our country
    may suffice for some of these high purposes; and in so wide and
    rich a field of research it is almost presumptuous in one
    undertaking to aim at more than such a partial exhibition. The
    list that follows, though by no means so large as might have
    been drawn up, exceeds the limits which the Editor proposes to
    his hopes, if not to his wishes; but, whether it is allowed him
    to accomplish a larger or smaller portion of it, it will be his
    aim to complete such subjects or periods as he begins before
    bringing it to a close. It is hardly necessary to observe that
    any list that is producible in this stage of the undertaking can
    but approximate to correctness and completeness in matters of
    detail, and even in the names which are selected to compose it.

    He has considered himself at liberty to include in the Series
    such saints as have been born in England, though they have lived
    and laboured out of it; and such, again, as have been in any
    sufficient way connected with our country, though born out of
    it; for instance, Missionaries or Preachers in it, or spiritual
    or temporal rulers, or founders of religious institutions or

    He has also included in the Series a few eminent or holy
    persons, who, though not in the Sacred Catalogue, are
    recommended to our religious memory by their fame, learning, or
    the benefits they have conferred on posterity. These have been
    distinguished from the Saints by printing their names in

    It is proposed to page all the longer Lives separately; the
    shorter will be thrown together in one. They will be published
    in monthly issues of not more than 128 pages each; and no
    regularity, whether of date or of subject, will be observed in
    the order of publication. But they will be so numbered as to
    admit ultimately of a general chronological arrangement.

    The separate writers are distinguished by letters subjoined to
    each Life: and it should be added, to prevent misapprehension,
    that, since under the present circumstances of our Church, they
    are necessarily of various, though not divergent, doctrinal
    opinions, no one is answerable for any composition but his own.
    At the same time, the work professing an historical and ethical
    character, questions of theology will be, as far as possible,
    thrown into the back ground.

J. H. N.
_Littlemore, Sept. 9, 1843._


 1 Elvan, B. and Medwyne, C.
 2 Martyrs of Lichfield.
 3 Melorus, M.
 5 Edward, K.C.
 6 Peter, A.
 7 Cedd, B.
 8 Pega, V. Wulsin, B.
 9 Adrian, A. Bertwald, Archb.
10 Sethrida, V.
11 Egwin, B.
12 Benedict Biscop, A. Aelred, A.
13 Kentigern, B.
14 Beuno, A.
15 Ceolulph, K. Mo.
16 Henry, Hermit. Fursey, A.
17 Mildwida, V.
18 Ulfrid or Wolfrid, M.
19 Wulstan, B. Henry, B.
22 Brithwold, B.
23 Boisil, A.
24 Cadoc, A.
26 Theoritgida, V.
27 Bathildis, Queen.
29 Gildas, A.
31 Adamnan, Mo. Serapion, M.


 2 Laurence, Archb.
 3 Wereburga, V.
 4 Gilbert, A. Liephard, B.M.
 6 Ina, K. Mo.
 7 Augulus, B.M. Richard, K.
 8 Elfleda, A. Cuthman, C.
 9 Theliau, B.
10 Trumwin, B.
12 Ethelwold, B. of Lindisfarne.
13 Cedmon, Mo., Ermenilda, Q.A.
15 Sigefride, B.
16 Finan, B.
20 Ulric, H.
23 Milburga, V.
24 Luidhard, B. Ethelbert of Kent,
25 Walburga, V.A.
27 Alnoth, H.M.
28 Oswald, B.


 1 David, Archb. Swibert, B.
 2 Chad, B. Willeik, C. Joavan, B.
 3 Winwaloe, A.
 4 Owin, Mo.
 6 Kineburga, &c., and Tibba, VV.
 7 Easterwin, A. William, Friar.
 8 Felix, B.
 9 Bosa, B.
12 Elphege, B. Paul de Leon, B.C.
14 Robert, H.
15 Eadgith, A.
17 Withburga, V.
18 Edward, K.M.
19 Alcmund, M.
20 Cuthbert, B. Herbert, B.
23 Ædelwald, H.
24 Hildelitha, A.
25 Alfwold of Sherborne, B. and William, M.
29 Gundleus, H.
30 Merwenna, A.


 3 Richard, B.
 9 Frithstan, B.
11 Guthlake, H.
13 Caradoc, H.
14 _Richard of Bury, B._
15 Paternus, B.
17 Stephen. A.
19 Elphege, Archb.
20 Adelbare, M. Cedwalla, K.
21 Anselm, Archb. Doctor.
23 George M.
29 Wilfrid II. Archb.
30 Erconwald, B. Suibert, B. _Maud, Q._


 1 Asaph, B. Ultan, A. Brioe, B.C.
 2 Germanus, M.
 5 Ethelred, K. Mo.
 6 Eadbert, A.
 7 John, Archb. of Beverley.
11 Fremund, M.
16 Simon Stock, H.
18 Elgiva, Q.
19 Dunstan, Archb.  _B. Alcuin, A._
20 Ethelbert, K.M.
21 Godric, H.
22 Winewald, A.  Berethun, A. _Henry, K._
24 Ethelburga, Q.
25 Aldhelm, B.
26 Augustine, Archb.
27 Bede, D. Mo.
28 _Lanfranc, Archb._
30 Walston, C.
31 Jurmin, C.


 1 Wistan, K.M.
 4 Petroc, A.
 5 Boniface, Archb. M.
 6 Gudwall, B.
 7 Robert, A.
 8 William, Archb.
10 Ivo, B. and Ithamar, B.
12 Eskill, B.M.
14 Elerius, A.
15 Edburga, V.
17 Botulph, A. John, Fr.
20 Idaberga, V.
21 Egelmund, A.
22 Alban, and Amphibolus, MM.
23 Ethelreda, V.A.
24 Bartholomew, H.
25 Adelbert, C.
27 John, C. of Moutier.
29 _Margaret, Countess of Richmond._


 1 Julius, Aaron, MM. Rumold, B. Leonorus, B.
 2 Oudoceus, B. Swithun, B.
 3 Gunthiern, A.
 4 Odo, Archb.
 5 Modwenna, V.A.
 6 Sexburga, A.
 7 Edelburga, V.A. Hedda, B. Willibald, B. Ercongota, V.
 8 Grimbald, and Edgar, K.
 9 _Stephen Langton, Archb._
13 Mildreda, V.A.
14 Marchelm, C. Boniface, Archb.
15 Deus-dedit, Archb. Plechelm, B. David, A. and Editha of Tamworth, Q.V.
16 Helier, H.M.
17 Kenelm, K.M.
18 Edburga and Edgitha of Aylesbury, VV. Frederic, B.M.
24 Wulfud and Ruffin, MM. Lewinna, V.M.
27 Hugh, M.
28 Sampson, B.
29 Lupus, B.
30 Tatwin, Archb. and Ermenigitha, V.
31 Germanus, B. and Neot, H.


 1 Ethelwold, B. of Winton.
 2 Etheldritha, V.
 3 Walthen, A.
 5 Oswald, K.M. Thomas, Mo. M. of Dover.
 8 Colman, B.
11 _William of Waynfleet, B._
13 Wigbert, A. Walter, A.
14 Werenfrid, C.
18 Helen, Empress.
20 Oswin, K.M.
21 Richard, B. of Andria.
22 Sigfrid, A.
23 Ebba, V.A.
25 Ebba, V.A.M.
26 Bregwin, Archb. _Bradwardine, Archb._
27 Sturmius, A.
29 Sebbus, K.
31 Eanswida, V.A. Aidan, A.B. Cuthburga, Q.V.


 2 William, B. of Roschid. William, Fr.
 6 Bega, A.
 7 Alcmund, A. Tilhbert, A.
 9 Bertelin, H. Wulfhilda or Vulfridis, A.
10 Otger, C.
11 _Robert Kilwardby, Archb._
14 _Richard Fox, B._
16 Ninian, B. Edith, daughter of Edgar, V.
17 Socrates and Stephen, MM.
19 Theodore, Archb.
21 Hereswide, Q. _Edward II. K._
25 Ceolfrid, A.
27 _William of Wykeham, B._
28 Lioba, V.A.
29 _B. Richard of Hampole, H._
30 Honorius, Archb.


 1 Roger, B.
 2 Thomas of Hereford, B.
 3 Ewalds (two) MM.
 5 Walter Stapleton, B. Acca, B.
 6 Ywy, C.
 7 Ositha, Q.V.M.
 8 Ceneu, V.
 9 Lina, V. and _Robert Grostete, B._
10 Paulinus, Archb. John, C. of Bridlington.
11 Edilburga, V.A.
12 Edwin, K.
14 Burchard, B.
15 Tecla, V.A.
16 Lullus, Archb.
17 Ethelred, Ethelbright, MM.
18 _Walter de Merton, B._
19 Frideswide, V. and Ethbin, A.
21 Ursula, V.M.
22 Mello, B.C.
24 Magloire, B.
25 _John of Salisbury, B._
26 Eata, B.
27 Witta, B.
28 _B. Alfred._
29 Sigebert, K. Elfreda, A.
31 Foillan, B.M.


 3 Wenefred, V.M. Rumwald, C.
 4 Brinstan, B. Clarus, M.
 5 Cungar, H.
 6 Iltut, A. and Winoc, A.
 7 Willebrord, B.
 8 Willehad, B. Tyssilio, B.
10 Justus, Archb.
12 Lebwin, C.
13 Eadburga of Menstrey, A.
14 Dubricius, B.C.
15 Malo, B.
16 Edmund, B.
17 Hilda, A. Hugh, B.
19 Ermenburga, Q.
20 Edmund, K.M. Humbert, B.M.
22 Paulinus, A.
23 Daniel, B.C.
28 Edwold, M.


 2 Weede, V.
 3 Birinus, B. Lucius, K. and Sola, H.
 4 Osmund, B.
 5 Christina, V.
 8 _John Peckham, Archb._
11 Elfleda, A.
12 Corentin, B.C.
13 Ethelburga, Q. wife of Edwin.
18 Winebald, A.
21 Eadburga, V.A.
26 Tathai, C.
27 Gerald, A.B.
29 Thomas, Archb. M.

N.B. _St. William_, _Austin-Friar_, _Ingulphus_, and _Peter of Blois_
have not been introduced into the above Calendar, their days of death or
festival not being as yet ascertained.



182 Dec. 3. Lucius, K. of the British.
     Jan. 1. Elvan, B. and Medwyne, C. envoys from St. Lucius to Rome.


300 Oct. 22. Mello, B. C. of Rouen.
303 Ap. 23. George, M. under Dioclesian. Patron of England.
    June 22. Alban and Amphibalus, MM.
    July 1. Julius and Aaron, MM. of Caerleon.
304 Jan. 2. Martyrs of Lichfield.
    Feb. 7. Augulus, B.M. of London.
328 Aug. 18. Helen, Empress, mother of Constantine.
388 Sept. 17. Socrates and Stephen, M.M. perhaps in Wales.
411 Jan. 3. Melorus, M. in Cornwall.


432 Sept. 16. Ninian, B. Apostle of the Southern Picts.
429 July 31. Germanus, B. C. of Auxerre.
     July 29. Lupus, B. C. of Troyes.
502 May 1. Brioc, B. C., disciple of St. Germanus.
490 Oct. 8. Ceneu, or Keyna, V., sister-in-law of Gundleus.
492 Mar. 29. Gundleus, Hermit, in Wales.
    July 3. Gunthiern, A., in Brittany.
453 Oct. 21. Ursula, V.M. near Cologne.
bef. 500 Dec. 12. Corentin, B.C. of Quimper.


Welsh Schools.

444-522 Nov. 14. Dubricius, B.C., first Bishop of Llandaff.
520 Nov. 22. Paulinus, A. of Whitland, tutor of St. David and St. Theliau.
445-544 Mar. 1. David, Archb. of Menevia, afterwards called from him.
abt. 500 Dec. 26. Tathai, C., master of St. Cadoc.
480 Jan. 24. Cadoc, A., son of St. Gundleus, and nephew of St. Keyna.
abt. 513 Nov. 6. Iltut, A., converted by St. Cadoc.
545 Nov. 23. Daniel, B.C., first Bishop of Bangor.
aft. 559 Apr. 18. Paternus, B.A., pupil of St. Iltut.
573 Mar. 12. Paul, B.C. of Leon, pupil of St. Iltut.
    Mar. 2. Ioavan, B., pupil of St. Paul.
599 July 28. Sampson, B., pupil of St. Iltut, cousin of St. Paul de Leon.
565 Nov. 15. Malo, B., cousin of St. Sampson.
575 Oct. 24. Magloire, B., cousin of St. Malo.
583 Jan. 29. Gildas, A., pupil of St. Iltut.
    July 1. Leonorus, B., pupil of St. Iltut.
604 Feb. 9. Theliau, B. of Llandaff, pupil of St. Dubricius.
560 July 2. Oudoceus, B., nephew to St. Theliau.
500-580 Oct. 19. Ethbin, A., pupil of St. Sampson.
516-601 Jan. 13. Kentigern, B. of Glasgow, founder of Monastery of Elwy.


529 Mar. 3. Winwaloe, A., in Brittany.
564 June 4. Petroc., A., in Cornwall.
    July 16. Helier, Hermit, M., in Jersey.
    June 27. John, C. of Moutier, in Tours.
590 May 1. Asaph, B. of Elwy, afterwards called after him.
abt. 600 June 6. Gudwall, B. of Aleth in Brittany.
    Nov. 8. Tyssilio, B. of St. Asaph.


Part I.

600 June 10. Ivo, or Ivia, B. from Persia.
596 Feb. 24. Luidhard, B. of Senlis, in France.
616 Feb. 24. Ethelbert, K. of Kent.
608 May 26. Augustine, Archb. of Canterbury, Apostle of England.
624 Apr. 24. Mellitus, Archb. of Canterbury,  }
619 Feb. 2. Laurence, Archb. of Canterbury,   } Companions of St.
608 Jan. 6. Peter, A. at Canterbury,          } Augustine.
627 Nov. 10. Justus, Archb. of Canterbury,    }
653 Sept. 30. Honorius, Archb. of Canterbury, }
662 July 15. Deus-dedit, Archb. of Canterbury.


Part II.

642 Oct. 29. Sigebert, K. of the East Angles.
646 Mar. 8. Felix, B. of Dunwich, Apostle of the East Angles.
650 Jan. 16. Fursey, A., preacher among the East Angles.
680 May 1. Ultan, A., brother of St. Fursey.
655 Oct. 31. Foillan, B.M., brother of St. Fursey, preacher in the
680 June 17. Botulph, A., in Lincolnshire or Sussex.
671 June 10. Ithamar, B. of Rochester.
650 Dec. 3. Birinus, B. of Dorchester.
705 July 7. Hedda, B. of Dorchester.
717 Jan. 11. Egwin, B. of Worcester.


Part III.

690 Sept. 19. Theodore, Archb. of Canterbury.
709 Jan. 9. Adrian, A. in Canterbury.
709 May 25. Aldhelm, B. of Sherborne, pupil of St. Adrian.


Part IV.

630 Nov. 3. Winefred, V.M. in Wales.
642 Feb. 4. Liephard, M.B., slain near Cambray.
660 Jan. 14. Beuno, A., kinsman of St. Cadocus and St. Kentigern.
673 Oct. 7. Osgitha, Q.V.M., in East Anglia during a Danish inroad.
630 June 14. Elerius, A. in Wales.
680 Jan. 27. Bathildis, Q., wife of Clovis II., king of France.
687 July 24. Lewinna, V.M., put to death by the Saxons.
700 July 18. Edberga and Edgitha, VV. of Aylesbury.


Part V.

644 Oct. 10. Paulinus, Archb. of York, companion of St. Augustine.
633 Oct. 12. Edwin, K. of Northumberland.
    Dec. 13. Ethelburga, Q., wife to St. Edwin.
642 Aug. 5. Oswald, K.M., St. Edwin's nephew.
651 Aug. 20. Oswin, K.M., cousin to St. Oswald.
683 Aug. 23. Ebba, V.A. of Coldingham, half-sister to St. Oswin.
689 Jan. 31. Adamnan, Mo. of Coldingham.


Part VI.--Whitby.

650 Sept. 6. Bega, V.A., foundress of St. Bee's, called after her.
681 Nov. 17. Hilda, A. of Whitby, daughter of St. Edwin's nephew.
716 Dec. 11. Elfleda, A. of Whitby, daughter of St. Oswin.
680 Feb. 12. Cedmon, Mo. of Whitby.


Part I.

    Sept. 21. Hereswida, Q., sister of Hilda, wife of Annas,
                     who succeeded Egric, Sigebert's cousin.
654 Jan. 10. Sethrida, V.A. of Faremoutier, St. Hereswida's
                     daughter by a former marriage.
693 Apr. 30. Erconwald, A.B., son of Annas and St. Hereswida, Bishop
                     of London, Abbot of Chertsey, founder of Barking.
677 Aug. 29. Sebbus, K., converted by St. Erconwald.
    May 31. Jurmin, C., son of Annas and St. Hereswida.
650 July 7. Edelburga, V.A. of Faremoutier, natural daughter
                     of Annas.
679 June 23. Ethelreda, Etheldreda, Etheltrudis, or Awdry, V.A.,
                     daughter of Annas and St. Hereswida.
    Mar. 17. Withburga, V., daughter of Annas and St. Hereswida.
699 July 6. Sexburga, A., daughter of Annas and St. Hereswida.
660 July 7. Ercongota, or Ertongata, V.A. of Faremoutier,
                    daughter of St. Sexburga.
699 Feb. 13. Ermenilda, Q.A., daughter of St. Sexburga,
                    wife of Wulfere.
aft. 675 Feb. 3. Wereburga, V., daughter of St. Ermenilda and Wulfere,
                    patron of Chester.
abt. 680 Feb. 27. Alnoth, H.M., bailiff to St. Wereburga.
640 Aug. 31. Eanswida, V.A., sister-in-law of St. Sexburga,
                     granddaughter to St. Ethelbert.
668 Oct. 17. Ethelred and Ethelbright, MM., nephews of St. Eanswida.
    July 30. Ermenigitha, V., niece of St. Eanswida.
676 Oct. 11. Edilberga, V.A. of Barking, daughter of Annas and St.
678 Jan. 26. Theoritgida, V., nun of Barking.
aft. 713 Aug. 31. Cuthberga, Q.V., of Barking, sister of St. Ina.
700 Mar. 24. Hildelitha, A. of Barking.
728 Feb. 6. Ina, K. Mo. of the West Saxons.
740 May 24. Ethelburga, Q., wife of St. Ina, nun at Barking.


Part II.

652 June 20. Idaburga, V.   }
696 Mar. 6. Kineburga, Q.A. }
701---- Kinneswitha, V.     } Daughters of King Penda.
    ---- Chidestre, V.      }
692 Dec. 2. Weeda, V.A.     }
696 Mar. 6. Tibba, V., their kinswoman.
    Nov. 3. Rumwald, C., grandson of Penda.
680 Nov. 19. Ermenburga, Q., mother to the three following.
    Feb. 23. Milburga, V.A. of Wenlock,  } Grand-daughters of
    July 13. Mildreda, V.A. of Menstrey, } Penda.
676 Jan. 17. Milwida, or Milgitha, V.    }
750 Nov. 13. Eadburga, A. of Menstrey.


Part III.

670 July 24. Wulfad and Ruffin, MM., sons of Wulfere,
                     Penda's son, and of St. Erminilda.
672 Mar. 2. Chad, B. of Lichfield.
664 Jan. 7. Cedd, B. of London.
688 Mar. 4. Owin, Mo. of Lichfield.
689 Apr. 20. Cedwalla, K. of West Saxons.
690-725 Nov. 5. Cungar, H. in Somersetshire.
700 Feb. 10. Trumwin, B. of the Picts.
705 Mar. 9. Bosa, Archb. of York.
709 Apr. 24. Wilfrid, Archb. of York.
721 May 7. John of Beverley, Archb. of York.
743 Apr. 29. Wilfrid II., Archb. of York.
733 May 22. Berethun, A. of Deirwood, disciple of St. John
                     of Beverley.
751 May 22. Winewald, A. of Deirwood.


Part IV.--Missions.

729 Apr. 24. Egbert, C., master to Willebrord.
693 Oct. 3. Ewalds (two), MM. in Westphalia.
690-736 Nov. 7. Willebrord, B. of Utrecht, Apostle of Friesland.
717 Mar. 1. Swibert, B., Apostle of Westphalia.
727 Mar. 2. Willeik, C., successor to St. Swibert.
705 June 25. Adelbert, C., grandson of St. Oswald, preacher
                     in Holland.
705 Aug. 14. Werenfrid, C., preacher in Friesland.
720 June 21. Engelmund, A., preacher in Holland.
730 Sept. 10. Otger, C. in Low Countries.
732 July 15. Plechelm, B., preacher in Guelderland.
750 May 2. Germanus, B.M. in the Netherlands.
760 Nov. 12, Lebwin, C. in Overyssel, in Holland.
760 July 14. Marchelm, C., companion of St. Lebwin, in Holland.
697-755 June 5. Boniface, Archb., M. of Mentz, Apostle of Germany.
712 Feb. 7. Richard, K. of the West Saxons.
704-790 July 7. Willibald, B. of Aichstadt,  }}
                     in Franconia,           }}
730-760 Dec. 18. Winebald, A. of Heidenheim, } Children of}
                     in Suabia,              } St. Richard.}
779 Feb. 25. Walburga, V.A. of Heidenheim,   }}
aft. 755 Sept. 28. Lioba, V.A. of Bischorsheim, }
750 Oct. 15. Tecla, V.A. of Kitzingen, in Franconia, } Companions
                                                     } of St.
788 Oct. 16. Lullus, Archb. of Mentz,                } Boniface.
abt. 747 Aug. 13. Wigbert, A. of Fritzlar and Ortdorf, in }
                     Germany,                             }
755 Apr. 20. Adelhare, B.M. of Erford, in Franconia,      }
780 Aug. 27. Sturmius, A. of Fulda,                       }
786 Oct. 27. Witta, or Albuinus, B. of Buraberg, in       }
                     Germany,                             }
791 Nov. 8. Willehad, B. of Bremen, and Apostle of        }
                  Saxony,                                 } Companions
791 Oct. 14. Burchard, B. of Wurtzburg, in Franconia,     } of St.
790 Dec 3. Sola, H., near Aichstadt, in Franconia,        } Boniface.
775 July 1. Rumold, B., Patron of Mechlin.
807 Apr. 30. Suibert, B. of Verden in Westphalia.


Part V.--Lindisfarne and Hexham.

670 Jan. 23. Boisil, A. of Melros, in Scotland.
651 Aug. 31. Aidan, A.B. of Lindisfarne.
664 Feb. 16. Finan, B. of Lindisfarne.
676 Aug. 8. Colman, B. of Lindisfarne.
685 Oct. 26. Eata, B. of Hexham.
687 Mar. 20. Cuthbert, B. of Lindisfarne.
    Oct. 6. Ywy, C. disciple of St. Cuthbert.
690 Mar. 20. Herbert, H. disciple of St. Cuthbert.
698 May 6. Eadbert, B. of Lindisfarne.
700 Mar. 23. Ædelwald, H. successor of St. Cuthbert, in his hermitage.
740 Feb. 12. Ethelwold, B. of Lindisfarne.
740 Nov. 20. Acca, B. of Hexham.
764 Jan. 15. Ceolulph, K. Mo. of Lindisfarne.
756 Mar. 6. Balther, H at Lindisfarne.
     " Bilfrid, H. Goldsmith at Lindisfarne.
781 Sept. 7. Alchmund, B. of Hexham.
789 Sept. 7. Tilhbert, B. of Hexham.


Part VI.--Wearmouth and Yarrow.

703 Jan. 12. Benedict Biscop, A. of Wearmouth.
685 Mar. 7. Easterwin, A. of Wearmouth.
689 Aug. 22. Sigfrid, A. of Wearmouth.
716 Sept. 25. Ceofrid, A. of Yarrow.
734 May 27. Bede, Doctor, Mo. of Yarrow.
804 May 19. _B. Alcuin, A. in France_.


710 May 5. Ethelred, K. Mo. King of Mercia, Monk of Bardney.
719 Jan. 8. Pega, V., sister of St. Guthlake.
714 April 11. Guthlake, H. of Croyland.
717 Nov. 6. Winoc, A. in Brittany.
730 Jan. 9. Bertwald, Archb. of Canterbury.
732 Dec. 27. Gerald, A.B. in Mayo.
734 July 30. Tatwin, Archb. of Canterbury.
750 Oct. 19. Frideswide, V. patron of Oxford.
762 Aug. 26. Bregwin, Archb. of Canterbury.
700-800 Feb. 8. Cuthman, C. of Stening in Sussex.
bef. 800 Sept. 9. Bertelin, H. patron of Stafford.


793 May 20. Ethelbert, K.M. of the East Angles.
834 Aug. 2. Etheldritha, or Alfreda, V., daughter of Offa, king of
                Mercia, nun at Croyland.
819 July 17. Kenelm, K.M. of Mercia.
849 June 1. Wistan, K.M. of Mercia.
838 July 18. Frederic, Archb. M. of Utrecht.
894 Nov. 4. Clarus, M. in Normandy.


Part I.--Danish Slaughters, &c.

819 Mar. 19. Alcmund, M., son of Eldred, king of Northumbria, Patron
                of Derby.
870 Nov. 20. Edmund, K.M. of the East Angles.
862 May 11. Fremund, H. M. nobleman of East Anglia.
870 Nov. 20. Humbert, B.M. of Elmon in East Anglia.
867 Aug. 25. Ebba, V.A.M. of Coldingham.


Part II.

862 July 2. Swithun, B. of Winton.
870 July 5. Modwenna, V.A. of Pollesworth in Warwickshire.
     Oct. 9. Lina, V. nun at Pollesworth.
871 Mar. 15. Eadgith, V.A. of Pollesworth, sister of King Ethelwolf.
900 Dec. 21. Eadburga, V.A. of Winton, daughter of King Ethelwolf.
880 Nov. 28. Edwold, H., brother of St. Edmund.


883 July 31. Neot, H. in Cornwall.
903 July 8. Grimbald, A. at Winton.
900 Oct. 28. _B. Alfred, K._
929 April 9. Frithstan, B. of Winton.
934 Nov. 4. Brinstan, B. of Winton.


Part I.

960 June 15. Edburga, V., nun at Winton, granddaughter of Alfred.
926 July 15. Editha, Q.V., nun of Tamworth, sister to Edburga.
921 May 18. Algyfa, or Elgiva, Q., mother of Edgar.
975 July 8. Edgar, K.
978 Mar. 18. Edward, K.M. at Corfe Castle.
984 Sept. 16. Edith, V., daughter of St. Edgar and St. Wulfhilda.
990 Sept. 9. Wulfhilda, or Vulfrida, A. of Wilton.
980 Mar. 30. Merwenna, V.A. of Romsey.
990 Oct. 29. Elfreda, A. of Romsey.
1016 Dec. 5. Christina of Romsey, V., sister of St. Margaret of


Part II.

961 July 4. Odo, Archb. of Canterbury, Benedictine Monk.
960-992 Feb. 28. Oswald, Archb. of York, B. of Worcester, nephew to
                    St. Odo.
951-1012 Mar. 12. Elphege the Bald, B. of Winton.
988 May 19. Dunstan, Archb. of Canterbury.
973 Jan. 8. Wulsin, B. of Sherbourne.
984 Aug. 1. Ethelwold, B. of Winton.
1015 Jan. 22. Brithwold, B. of Winton.



 950 Feb. 15. Sigfride, B., apostle of Sweden.
1016 June 12. Eskill, B.M. in Sweden, kinsman of St. Sigfride.
1028 Jan. 18. Wolfred, M. in Sweden.
1050 July 15. David, A., Cluniac in Sweden.


1012 April 19. Elphege, M. Archb. of Canterbury.
1016 May 30. Walston, C. near Norwich.
1053 Mar. 31. Alfwold, B. of Sherborne.
1067 Sept. 2. William, B. of Roschid in Denmark.
1066 Jan. 5. Edward, K.C.
1099 Dec. 4. Osmund, B. of Salisbury.


1095 Jan. 19. Wulstan, B. of Worcester.
1089 May 28. _Lanfranc, Archb. of Canterbury._
1109 Apr. 21. Anselm, Doctor, Archb. of Canterbury.
1170 Dec. 29. Thomas, Archb. M. of Canterbury.
1200 Nov. 17. Hugh, B. of Lincoln, Carthusian Monk.


Part I.

1109 _Ingulphus, A. of Croyland._
1117 Apr. 30. _B. Maud, Q._ Wife of Henry I.
1124 Apr. 13. Caradoc, H. in South Wales.
1127 Jan. 16. Henry, H. in Northumberland.
1144 Mar. 25. William, M. of Norwich.
1151 Jan. 19. Henry, M.B. of Upsal.
1150 Aug. 13. Walter, A. of Fontenelle, in France.
1154 June 8. William, Archb. of York.
1170 May 21. Godric, H. in Durham.
1180 Oct. 25. _John of Salisbury, B. of Chartres._
1182 June 24. Bartholomew, C., monk at Durham.
1189 Feb. 4. Gilbert, A. of Sempringham.
1190 Aug. 21. Richard, B. of Andria.
1200 _Peter de Blois, Archd. of Bath._


Part II.--Cistertian Order.

1134 Apr. 17. Stephen, A. of Citeaux.
1139 June 7. Robert, A. of Newminster in Northumberland.
1154 Feb. 20. Ulric, H. in Dorsetshire.
1160 Aug. 3. Walthen, A. of Melrose.
1166 Jan. 12. Aelred, A. of Rieval.


Part I.

1228 July 9. _Stephen Langton, Archb. of Canterbury._
1242 Nov. 16. Edmund, Archb. of Canterbury.
1253 Apr. 3. Richard, B. of Chichester.
1282 Oct. 2. Thomas, B. of Hereford.
1294 Dec. 3. _John Peckham, Archb. of Canterbury._


Part II.--Orders of Friars.

1217 June 17. John, Fr., Trinitarian.
1232 Mar. 7. William, Fr., Franciscan.
1240 Jan. 31. Serapion, Fr., M., Redemptionist.
1265 May 16. Simon Stock, H., General of the Carmelites.
1279 Sept. 11. _Robert Kilwardby, Archb. of Canterbury,
                    Fr. Dominican._


Part III.

1239 Mar. 14. Robert H. at Knaresboro.
1241 Oct. 1. Roger, B. of London.
1255 July 27. Hugh, M. of Lincoln.
1295 Aug. 5. Thomas, Mo., M. of Dover.
1254 Oct. 9. _Robert Grossteste, B. of Lincoln._
1270 July 14. Boniface, Archb. of Canterbury.
1278 Oct. 18. _Walter de Merton, B. of Rochester._


1326 Oct. 5. _Stapleton, B. of Exeter._
1327 Sept. 21. Edward K.
1349 Sept. 29. _B. Richard, H. of Hampole._
1345 Apr. 14. _Richard of Bury, B. of Lincoln._
1349 Aug. 26. _Bradwardine, Archb. of Canterbury,
                    the Doctor Profundus._
1358 Sept. 2. Willam, Fr., Servite.
1379 Oct. 10. John, C. of Bridlington.
1324-1404 Sept. 27. _William of Wykeham, B. of Winton._
1400 William, Fr. Austin.


1471 May 22. _Henry, K. of England._
1486 Aug. 11. _William of Wanefleet, B. of Winton._
1509 June 29. _Margaret, Countess of Richmond._
1528 Sept. 14. _Richard Fox, B. of Winton._



I have been bringing out my mind in this Volume on every subject which
has come before me; and therefore I am bound to state plainly what I
feel and have felt, since I was a Catholic, about the Anglican Church. I
said, in a former page, that, on my conversion, I was not conscious of
any change in me of thought or feeling, as regards matters of doctrine;
this, however, was not the case as regards some matters of fact, and,
unwilling as I am to give offence to religious Anglicans, I am bound to
confess that I felt a great change in my view of the Church of England.
I cannot tell how soon there came on me,--but very soon,--an extreme
astonishment that I had ever imagined it to be a portion of the Catholic
Church. For the first time, I looked at it from without, and (as I
should myself say) saw it as it was. Forthwith I could not get myself to
see in it any thing else, than what I had so long fearfully suspected,
from as far back as 1836,--a mere national institution. As if my eyes
were suddenly opened, so I saw it--spontaneously, apart from any
definite act of reason or any argument; and so I have seen it ever
since. I suppose, the main cause of this lay in the contrast which was
presented to me by the Catholic Church. Then I recognized at once a
reality which was quite a new thing with me. Then I was sensible that I
was not making for myself a Church by an effort of thought; I needed not
to make an act of faith in her; I had not painfully to force myself into
a position, but my mind fell back upon itself in relaxation and in
peace, and I gazed at her almost passively as a great objective fact. I
looked at her;--at her rites, her ceremonial, and her precepts; and I
said, "This _is_ a religion;" and then, when I looked back upon the poor
Anglican Church, for which I had laboured so hard, and upon all that
appertained to it, and thought of our various attempts to dress it up
doctrinally and esthetically, it seemed to me to be the veriest of

Vanity of vanities, all is vanity! How can I make a record of what
passed within me, without seeming to be satirical? But I speak plain,
serious words. As people call me credulous for acknowledging Catholic
claims, so they call me satirical for disowning Anglican pretensions; to
them it _is_ credulity, to them it _is_ satire; but it is not so in me.
What they think exaggeration, I think truth. I am not speaking of the
Anglican Church with any disdain, though to them I seem contemptuous. To
them of course it is "Aut Cæsar aut nullus," but not to me. It may be a
great creation, though it be not divine, and this is how I judge of it.
Men, who abjure the divine right of kings, would be very indignant, if
on that account they were considered disloyal. And so I recognize in the
Anglican Church a time-honoured institution, of noble historical
memories, a monument of ancient wisdom, a momentous arm of political
strength, a great national organ, a source of vast popular advantage,
and, to a certain point, a witness and teacher of religious truth. I do
not think that, if what I have written about it since I have been a
Catholic, be equitably considered as a whole, I shall be found to have
taken any other view than this; but that it is something sacred, that it
is an oracle of revealed doctrine, that it can claim a share in St.
Ignatius or St. Cyprian, that it can take the rank, contest the
teaching, and stop the path of the Church of St. Peter, that it can call
itself "the Bride of the Lamb," this is the view of it which simply
disappeared from my mind on my conversion, and which it would be almost
a miracle to reproduce. "I went by, and lo! it was gone; I sought it,
but its place could no where be found," and nothing can bring it back to
me. And, as to its possession of an episcopal succession from the time
of the Apostles, well, it may have it, and, if the Holy See ever so
decide, I will believe it, as being the decision of a higher judgment
than my own; but, for myself, I must have St. Philip's gift, who saw the
sacerdotal character on the forehead of a gaily-attired youngster,
before I can by my own wit acquiesce in it, for antiquarian arguments
are altogether unequal to the urgency of visible facts. Why is it that I
must pain dear friends by saying so, and kindle a sort of resentment
against me in the kindest of hearts? but I must, though to do it be not
only a grief to me, but most impolitic at the moment. Any how, this is
my mind; and, if to have it, if to have betrayed it, before now,
involuntarily by my words or my deeds, if on a fitting occasion, as now,
to have avowed it, if all this be a proof of the justice of the charge
brought against me by my accuser of having "turned round upon my
Mother-Church with contumely and slander," in this sense, but in no
other sense, do I plead guilty to it without a word in extenuation.

In no other sense surely; the Church of England has been the instrument
of Providence in conferring great benefits on me;--had I been born in
Dissent, perhaps I should never have been baptized; had I been born an
English Presbyterian, perhaps I should never have known our Lord's
divinity; had I not come to Oxford, perhaps I never should have heard of
the visible Church, or of Tradition, or other Catholic doctrines. And as
I have received so much good from the Anglican Establishment itself, can
I have the heart or rather the want of charity, considering that it does
for so many others, what it has done for me, to wish to see it
overthrown? I have no such wish while it is what it is, and while we are
so small a body. Not for its own sake, but for the sake of the many
congregations to which it ministers, I will do nothing against it. While
Catholics are so weak in England, it is doing our work; and, though it
does us harm in a measure, at present the balance is in our favour. What
our duty would be at another time and in other circumstances, supposing,
for instance, the Establishment lost its dogmatic faith, or at least did
not preach it, is another matter altogether. In secular history we read
of hostile nations having long truces, and renewing them from time to
time, and that seems to be the position which the Catholic Church may
fairly take up at present in relation to the Anglican Establishment.

Doubtless the National Church has hitherto been a serviceable breakwater
against doctrinal errors, more fundamental than its own. How long this
will last in the years now before us, it is impossible to say, for the
Nation drags down its Church to its own level; but still the National
Church has the same sort of influence over the Nation that a periodical
has upon the party which it represents, and my own idea of a Catholic's
fitting attitude towards the National Church in this its supreme hour,
is that of assisting and sustaining it, if it be in our power, in the
interest of dogmatic truth. I should wish to avoid every thing (except
indeed under the direct call of duty, and this is a material exception,)
which went to weaken its hold upon the public mind, or to unsettle its
establishment, or to embarrass and lessen its maintenance of those great
Christian and Catholic principles and doctrines which it has up to this
time successfully preached.



For the Economy, considered as a rule of practice, I shall refer to what
I wrote upon it in 1830-32, in my History of the Arians. I have shown
above, pp. 26, 27, that the doctrine in question had in the early Church
a large signification, when applied to the divine ordinances: it also
had a definite application to the duties of Christians, whether clergy
or laity, in preaching, in instructing or catechizing, or in ordinary
intercourse with the world around them; and in this aspect I have here
to consider it.

As Almighty God did not all at once introduce the Gospel to the world,
and thereby gradually prepared men for its profitable reception, so,
according to the doctrine of the early Church, it was a duty, for the
sake of the heathen among whom they lived, to observe a great reserve
and caution in communicating to them the knowledge of "the whole counsel
of God." This cautious dispensation of the truth, after the manner of a
discreet and vigilant steward, is denoted by the word "economy." It is a
mode of acting which comes under the head of Prudence, one of the four
Cardinal Virtues.

The principle of the Economy is this; that out of various courses, in
religious conduct or statement, all and each _allowable antecedently and
in themselves_, that ought to be taken which is most expedient and most
suitable at the time for the object in hand.

Instances of its application and exercise in Scripture are such as the
following:--1. Divine Providence did but gradually impart to the world
in general, and to the Jews in particular, the knowledge of His
will:--He is said to have "winked at the times of ignorance among the
heathen;" and He suffered in the Jews divorce "because of the hardness
of their hearts." 2. He has allowed Himself to be represented as having
eyes, ears, and hands, as having wrath, jealousy, grief, and repentance.
3. In like manner, our Lord spoke harshly to the Syro-Ph[oe]nician
woman, whose daughter He was about to heal, and made as if He would go
further, when the two disciples had come to their journey's end. 4. Thus
too Joseph "made himself strange to his brethren," and Elisha kept
silence on request of Naaman to bow in the house of Rimmon. 5. Thus St.
Paul circumcised Timothy, while he cried out "Circumcision availeth

It may be said that this principle, true in itself, yet is dangerous,
because it admits of an easy abuse, and carries men away into what
becomes insincerity and cunning. This is undeniable; to do evil that
good may come, to consider that the means, whatever they are, justify
the end, to sacrifice truth to expedience, unscrupulousness,
recklessness, are grave offences. These are abuses of the Economy. But
to call them _economical_ is to give a fine name to what occurs every
day, independent of any knowledge of the _doctrine_ of the Economy. It
is the abuse of a rule which nature suggests to every one. Every one
looks out for the "mollia tempora fandi," and for "mollia verba" too.

Having thus explained what is meant by the Economy as a rule of social
intercourse between men of different religious, or, again, political, or
social views, next I will go on to state what I said in the Arians.

I say in that Volume first, that our Lord has given us the _principle_
in His own words,--"Cast not your pearls before swine;" and that He
exemplified it in His teaching by parables; that St. Paul expressly
distinguishes between the milk which is necessary to one set of men, and
the strong meat which is allowed to others, and that, in two Epistles. I
say, that the Apostles in the Acts observe the same rule in their
speeches, for it is a fact, that they do not preach the high doctrines
of Christianity, but only "Jesus and the Resurrection" or "repentance
and faith." I also say, that this is the very reason that the Fathers
assign for the silence of various writers in the first centuries on the
subject of our Lord's divinity. I also speak of the catechetical system
practised in the early Church, and the _disciplina arcani_ as regards
the doctrine of the Holy Trinity, to which Bingham bears witness; also
of the defence of this rule by Basil, Cyril of Jerusalem, Chrysostom,
and Theodoret.

But next the question may be asked, whether I have said any thing in my
Volume _to guard_ the doctrine, thus laid down, from the abuse to which
it is obviously exposed: and my answer is easy. Of course, had I had any
idea that I should have been exposed to such hostile misrepresentations,
as it has been my lot to undergo on the subject, I should have made more
direct avowals than I have done of my sense of the gravity and the
danger of that abuse. Since I could not foresee when I wrote, that I
should have been wantonly slandered, I only wonder that I have
anticipated the charge as fully as will be seen in the following

For instance, speaking of the Disciplina Arcani, I say:--(1) "The
elementary information given to the heathen or catechumen was _in no
sense undone_ by the subsequent secret teaching, which was in fact but
the _filling up of a bare but correct outline_," p. 58, and I contrast
this with the conduct of the Manichæans "who represented the initiatory
discipline as founded on a _fiction_ or hypothesis, which was to be
forgotten by the learner as he made progress in the _real_ doctrine of
the Gospel." (2) As to allegorizing, I say that the Alexandrians erred,
whenever and as far as they proceeded "to _obscure_ the primary meaning
of Scripture, and to _weaken the force of historical facts_ and express
declarations," p. 69. (3) And that they were "more open to _censure_,"
when, on being "_urged by objections_ to various passages in the history
of the Old Testament, as derogatory to the divine perfections or to the
Jewish Saints, they had _recourse to an allegorical explanation by way
of answer_," p. 71. (4) I add, "_It is impossible to defend such a
procedure_, which seems to imply a _want of faith_ in those who had
recourse to it;" for "God has given us _rules of right and wrong_",
_ibid._ (5) Again, I say,--"The _abuse of the Economy_ in _the hands of
unscrupulous reasoners_, is obvious. _Even the honest_ controversialist
or teacher will find it very difficult to represent, _without
misrepresenting_, what it is yet his duty to present to his hearers with
caution or reserve. Here the obvious rule to guide our practice is, to
be careful ever to maintain _substantial truth_ in our use of the
economical method," pp. 79, 80. (6) And so far from concurring at all
hazards with Justin, Gregory, or Athanasius, I say, "It _is plain_
[they] _were justified or not_ in their Economy, _according_ as they did
or did not _practically mislead their opponents_," p. 80. (7) I proceed,
"It is so difficult to hit the mark in these perplexing cases, that it
is not wonderful, should these or other Fathers have failed at times,
and said more or less than was proper," _ibid._

The Principle of the Economy is familiarly acted on among us every day.
When we would persuade others, we do not begin by treading on their
toes. Men would be thought rude who introduced their own religious
notions into mixed society, and were devotional in a drawing-room. Have
we never thought lawyers tiresome who did _not_ observe this polite
rule, who came down for the assizes and talked law all through dinner?
Does the same argument tell in the House of Commons, on the hustings,
and at Exeter Hall? Is an educated gentleman never worsted at an
election by the tone and arguments of some clever fellow, who, whatever
his shortcomings in other respects, understands the common people?

       *       *       *       *       *

As to the Catholic Religion in England at the present day, this only
will I observe,--that the truest expedience is to answer right out, when
you are asked; that the wisest economy is to have no management; that
the best prudence is not to be a coward; that the most damaging folly is
to be found out shuffling; and that the first of virtues is to "tell
truth, and shame the devil."



Almost all authors, Catholic and Protestant, admit, that _when a just
cause is present_, there is some kind or other of verbal misleading,
which is not sin. Even silence is in certain cases virtually such a
misleading, according to the Proverb, "Silence gives consent." Again,
silence is absolutely forbidden to a Catholic, as a mortal sin, under
certain circumstances, e.g. to keep silence, when it is a duty to make a
profession of faith.

Another mode of verbal misleading, and the most direct, is actually
saying the thing that is not; and it is defended on the principle that
such words are not a lie, when there is a "justa causa," as killing is
not murder in the case of an executioner.

Another ground of certain authors for saying that an untruth is not a
lie where there is a just cause, is, that veracity is a kind of justice,
and therefore, when we have no duty of justice to tell truth to another,
it is no sin not to do so. Hence we may say the thing that is not, to
children, to madmen, to men who ask impertinent questions, to those whom
we hope to benefit by misleading.

Another ground, taken in defending certain untruths, _ex justâ causâ_,
as if not lies, is, that veracity is for the sake of society, and that,
if in no case whatever we might lawfully mislead others, we should
actually be doing society great harm.

Another mode of verbal misleading is equivocation or a play upon words;
and it is defended on the theory that to lie is to use words in a sense
which they will not bear. But an equivocator uses them in a received
sense, though there is another received sense, and therefore, according
to this definition, he does not lie.

Others say that all equivocations are, after all, a kind of
lying,--faint lies or awkward lies, but still lies; and some of these
disputants infer, that therefore we must not equivocate, and others that
equivocation is but a half-measure, and that it is better to say at once
that in certain cases untruths are not lies.

Others will try to distinguish between evasions and equivocations; but
though there are evasions which are clearly not equivocations, yet it is
very difficult scientifically to draw the line between the one and the

To these must be added the unscientific way of dealing with lies:--viz.
that on a great or cruel occasion a man cannot help telling a lie, and
he would not be a man, did he not tell it, but still it is very wrong,
and he ought not to do it, and he must trust that the sin will be
forgiven him, though he goes about to commit it ever so deliberately,
and is sure to commit it again under similar circumstances. It is a
necessary frailty, and had better not be thought about before it is
incurred, and not thought of again, after it is well over. This view
cannot for a moment be defended, but, I suppose, it is very common.

       *       *       *       *       *

I think the historical course of thought upon the matter has been this:
the Greek Fathers thought that, when there was a _justa causa_, an
untruth need not be a lie. St. Augustine took another view, though with
great misgiving; and, whether he is rightly interpreted or not, is the
doctor of the great and common view that all untruths are lies, and that
there can be _no_ just cause of untruth. In these later times, this
doctrine has been found difficult to work, and it has been largely
taught that, though all untruths are lies, yet that certain
equivocations, when there is a just cause, are not untruths.

Further, there have been and all along through these later ages, other
schools, running parallel with the above mentioned, one of which says
that equivocations, &c. after all _are_ lies, and another which says
that there are untruths which are not lies.

       *       *       *       *       *

And now as to the "just cause," which is the condition, _sine quâ non_.
The Greek Fathers make it such as these, self-defence, charity, zeal for
God's honour, and the like.

St. Augustine seems to deal with the same "just causes" as the Greek
Fathers, even though he does not allow of their availableness as
depriving untruths, spoken on such occasions, of their sinfulness. He
mentions defence of life and of honour, and the safe custody of a
secret. Also the great Anglican writers, who have followed the Greek
Fathers, in defending untruths when there is the "just cause," consider
that "just cause" to be such as the preservation of life and property,
defence of law, the good of others. Moreover, their moral rights, e.g.
defence against the inquisitive, &c.

St. Alfonso, I consider, would take the same view of the "justa causa"
as the Anglican divines; he speaks of it as "quicunque finis _honestus_,
ad servanda bona spiritui vel corpori utilia;" which is very much the
view which they take of it, judging by the instances which they give.

In all cases, however, and as contemplated by all authors, Clement of
Alexandria, or Milton, or St. Alfonso, such a causa is, in fact,
extreme, rare, great, or at least special. Thus the writer in the
Mélanges Théologiques (Liège, 1852-3, p. 453) quotes Lessius: "Si absque
justa causa fiat, est abusio orationis contra virtutem veritatis, et
civilem consuetudinem, etsi proprie non sit mendacium." That is, the
virtue of truth, and the civil custom, are the _measure_ of the just
cause. And so Voit, "If a man has used a reservation (restrictione non
purè mentali) without a _grave_ cause, he has sinned gravely." And so
the author himself, from whom I quote, and who defends the Patristic and
Anglican doctrine that there _are_ untruths which are not lies, says,
"Under the name of mental reservation theologians authorize many lies,
_when there is for them a grave reason_ and proportionate," i.e. to
their character.--p. 459. And so St. Alfonso, in another Treatise,
quotes St. Thomas to the effect, that if from one cause two immediate
effects follow, and, if the good effect of that cause is _equal in
value_ to the bad effect (bonus _æquivalet_ malo), then nothing hinders
the speaker's intending the good and only permitting the evil. From
which it will follow that, since the evil to society from lying is very
great, the just cause which is to make it allowable, must be very great
also. And so Kenrick: "It is confessed by all Catholics that, in the
common intercourse of life, all ambiguity of language is to be avoided;
but it is debated whether such ambiguity is _ever_ lawful. Most
theologians answer in the affirmative, supposing a _grave cause_ urges,
and the [true] mind of the speaker can be collected from the adjuncts,
though in fact it be not collected."

However, there are cases, I have already said, of another kind, in which
Anglican authors would think a lie allowable; such as when a question is
_impertinent_. Of such a case Walter Scott, if I mistake not, supplied a
very distinct example, in his denying so long the authorship of his

What I have been saying shows what different schools of opinion there
are in the Church in the treatment of this difficult doctrine; and, by
consequence, that a given individual, such as I am, _cannot_ agree with
all of them, and has a full right to follow which of them he will. The
freedom of the Schools, indeed, is one of those rights of reason, which
the Church is too wise really to interfere with. And this applies not to
moral questions only, but to dogmatic also.

       *       *       *       *       *

It is supposed by Protestants that, because St. Alfonso's writings have
had such high commendation bestowed upon them by authority, therefore
they have been invested with a quasi-infallibility. This has arisen in
good measure from Protestants not knowing the force of theological
terms. The words to which they refer are the authoritative decision that
"nothing in his works has been found _worthy of censure_," "censurâ
dignum;" but this does not lead to the conclusions which have been drawn
from it. Those words occur in a legal document, and cannot be
interpreted except in a legal sense. In the first place, the sentence is
negative; nothing in St. Alfonso's writings is positively approved; and,
secondly, it is not said that there are no faults in what he has
written, but nothing which comes under the ecclesiastical _censura_,
which is something very definite. To take and interpret them, in the way
commonly adopted in England, is the same mistake, as if one were to take
the word "Apologia" in the English sense of apology, or "Infant" in law
to mean a little child.

1. Now first as to the meaning of the above form of words viewed as a
proposition. When a question on the subject was asked of the fitting
authorities at Rome by the Archbishop of Besançon, the answer returned
to him contained this condition, viz. that those words were to be
interpreted, "with due regard to the mind of the Holy See concerning the
approbation of writings of the servants of God, ad effectum
Canonizationis." This is intended to prevent any Catholic taking the
words about St. Alfonso's works in too large a sense. Before a Saint is
canonized, his works are examined, and a judgment pronounced upon them.
Pope Benedict XIV. says, "The _end_ or _scope_ of this judgment is, that
it may appear, whether the doctrine of the servant of God, which he has
brought out in his writings, is free from any soever _theological
censure_." And he remarks in addition, "It never can be said that the
doctrine of a servant of God is _approved_ by the Holy See, but at most
it can [only] be said that it is not disapproved (non reprobatam) in
case that the Revisers had reported that there is nothing found by them
in his works, which is adverse to the decrees of Urban VIII., and that
the judgment of the Revisers has been approved by the sacred
Congregation, and confirmed by the Supreme Pontiff." The Decree of Urban
VIII. here referred to is, "Let works be examined, whether they contain
errors against faith or good morals (bonos mores), or any new doctrine,
or a doctrine foreign and alien to the common sense and custom of the
Church." The author from whom I quote this (M. Vandenbroeck, of the
diocese of Malines) observes, "It is therefore clear, that the
approbation of the works of the Holy Bishop touches not the truth of
every proposition, adds nothing to them, nor even gives them by
consequence a degree of intrinsic probability." He adds that it gives
St. Alfonso's theology an extrinsic probability, from the fact that, in
the judgment of the Holy See, no proposition deserves to receive a
censure; but that "that probability will cease nevertheless in a
particular case, for any one who should be convinced, whether by evident
arguments, or by a decree of the Holy See, or otherwise, that the
doctrine of the Saint deviates from the truth." He adds, "From the fact
that the approbation of the works of St. Alfonso does not decide the
truth of each proposition, it follows, as Benedict XIV. has remarked,
that we may combat the doctrine which they contain; only, since a
canonized saint is in question, who is honoured by a solemn _culte_ in
the Church, we ought not to speak except with respect, nor to attack his
opinions except with temper and modesty."

2. Then, as to the meaning of the word _censura_: Benedict XIV.
enumerates a number of "Notes" which come under that name; he says, "Out
of propositions which are to be noted with theological censure, some are
heretical, some erroneous, some close upon error, some savouring of
heresy," and so on; and each of these terms has its own definite
meaning. Thus by "erroneous" is meant, according to Viva, a proposition
which is not _immediately_ opposed to a revealed proposition, but only
to a theological _conclusion_ drawn from premisses which are _de fide_;
"savouring of heresy is" a proposition, which is opposed to a
theological conclusion not evidently drawn from premisses which are _de
fide_, but most probably and according to the common mode of
theologizing;--and so with the rest. Therefore when it was said by the
Revisers of St. Alfonso's works that they were not "worthy of
_censure_," it was only meant that they did not fall under these
particular Notes.

But the answer from Rome to the Archbishop of Besançon went further than
this; it actually took pains to declare that any one who pleased might
follow other theologians instead of St. Alfonso. After saying that no
Priest was to be interfered with who followed St. Alfonso in the
Confessional, it added, "This is said, however, without on that account
judging that they are reprehended who follow opinions handed down by
other approved authors."

And this too I will observe,--that St. Alfonso made many changes of
opinion himself in the course of his writings; and it could not for an
instant be supposed that we were bound to every one of his opinions,
when he did not feel himself bound to them in his own person. And, what
is more to the purpose still, there are opinions, or some opinion, of
his which actually have been proscribed by the Church since, and cannot
now be put forward or used. I do not pretend to be a well-read
theologian myself, but I say this on the authority of a theological
professor of Breda, quoted in the Mélanges Théol. for 1850-1. He says:
"It may happen, that, in the course of time, errors may be found in the
works of St. Alfonso and be proscribed by the Church, _a thing which in
fact has already occurred_."

       *       *       *       *       *

In not ranging myself then with those who consider that it is
justifiable to use words in a double sense, that is, to equivocate, I
put myself under the protection of such authors as Cardinal Gerdil,
Natalis Alexander, Contenson, Concina, and others. Under the protection
of these authorities, I say as follows:--

Casuistry is a noble science, but it is one to which I am led, neither
by my abilities nor my turn of mind. Independently, then, of the
difficulties of the subject, and the necessity, before forming an
opinion, of knowing more of the arguments of theologians upon it than I
do, I am very unwilling to say a word here on the subject of Lying and
Equivocation. But I consider myself bound to speak; and therefore, in
this strait, I can do nothing better, even for my own relief, than
submit myself, and what I shall say, to the judgment of the Church, and
to the consent, so far as in this matter there be a consent, of the
Schola Theologorum.

Now in the case of one of those special and rare exigencies or
emergencies, which constitute the _justa causa_ of dissembling or
misleading, whether it be extreme as the defence of life, or a duty as
the custody of a secret, or of a personal nature as to repel an
impertinent inquirer, or a matter too trivial to provoke question, as in
dealing with children or madmen, there seem to be four courses:--

1. _To say the thing that is not._ Here I draw the reader's attention to
the words _material_ and _formal_. "Thou shalt not kill;" _murder_ is
the _formal_ transgression of this commandment, but _accidental
homicide_ is the _material_ transgression. The _matter_ of the act is
the same in both cases; but in the _homicide_, there is nothing more
than the act, whereas in _murder_ there must be the intention, &c.,
which constitutes the formal sin. So, again, an executioner commits the
material act, but not that formal killing which is a breach of the
commandment. So a man, who, simply to save himself from starving, takes
a loaf which is not his own, commits only the material, not the formal
act of stealing, that is, he does not commit a sin. And so a baptized
Christian, external to the Church, who is in invincible ignorance, is a
material heretic, and not a formal. And in like manner, if to say the
thing which is not be in special cases lawful, it may be called a
_material lie_.

The first mode then which has been suggested of meeting those special
cases, in which to mislead by words has a sufficient occasion, or has a
_just cause_, is by a material lie.

The second mode is by an _æquivocatio_, which is not equivalent to the
English word "equivocation," but means sometimes a _play on words_,
sometimes an _evasion_: we must take these two modes of misleading

2. _A play upon words._ St. Alfonso certainly says that a play upon
words is allowable; and, speaking under correction, I should say that he
does so on the ground that lying is _not_ a sin against justice, that
is, against our neighbour, but a sin against God. God has made words the
signs of ideas, and therefore if a word denotes two ideas, we are at
liberty to use it in either of its senses: but I think I must be
incorrect in some respect in supposing that the Saint does not recognize
a lie as an injustice, because the Catechism of the Council, as I have
quoted it at p. 281, says, "Vanitate et mendacio fides ac veritas
tolluntur, arctissima vincula _societatis humanæ_; quibus sublatis,
sequitur summa vitæ _confusio_, ut _homines nihil a dæmonibus differre

3. _Evasion_;--when, for instance, the speaker diverts the attention of
the hearer to another subject; suggests an irrelevant fact or makes a
remark, which confuses him and gives him something to think about;
throws dust into his eyes; states some truth, from which he is quite
sure his hearer will draw an illogical and untrue conclusion, and the

The greatest school of evasion, I speak seriously, is the House of
Commons; and necessarily so, from the nature of the case. And the
hustings is another.

An instance is supplied in the history of St. Athanasius: he was in a
boat on the Nile, flying persecution; and he found himself pursued. On
this he ordered his men to turn his boat round, and ran right to meet
the satellites of Julian. They asked him, "Have you seen Athanasius?"
and he told his followers to answer, "Yes, he is close to you." _They_
went on their course as if they were sure to come up to him, while _he_
ran back into Alexandria, and there lay hid till the end of the

I gave another instance above, in reference to a doctrine of religion.
The early Christians did their best to conceal their Creed on account of
the misconceptions of the heathen about it. Were the question asked of
them, "Do you worship a Trinity?" and did they answer, "We worship one
God, and none else;" the inquirer might, or would, infer that they did
not acknowledge the Trinity of Divine Persons.

It is very difficult to draw the line between these evasions and what
are commonly called in English _equivocations_; and of this difficulty,
again, I think, the scenes in the House of Commons supply us with

4. The fourth method is _silence_. For instance, not giving the _whole_
truth in a court of law. If St. Alban, after dressing himself in the
Priest's clothes, and being taken before the persecutor, had been able
to pass off for his friend, and so gone to martyrdom without being
discovered; and had he in the course of examination answered all
questions truly, but not given the whole truth, the most important
truth, that he was the wrong person, he would have come very near to
telling a lie, for a half-truth is often a falsehood. And his defence
must have been the _justa causa_, viz. either that he might in charity
or for religion's sake save a priest, or again that the judge had no
right to interrogate him on the subject.

Now, of these four modes of misleading others by the tongue, when there
is a _justa causa_ (supposing there can be such),--(1) a material lie,
that is, an untruth which is not a lie, (2) an equivocation, (3) an
evasion, and (4) silence,--First, I have no difficulty whatever in
recognizing as allowable the method of _silence_.

Secondly, But, if I allow of _silence_, why not of the method of
_material lying_, since half of a truth _is_ often a lie? And, again, if
all killing be not murder, nor all taking from another stealing, why
must all untruths be lies? Now I will say freely that I think it
difficult to answer this question, whether it be urged by St. Clement or
by Milton; at the same time, I never have acted, and I think, when it
came to the point, I never should act upon such a theory myself, except
in one case, stated below. This I say for the benefit of those who speak
hardly of Catholic theologians, on the ground that they admit text-books
which allow of equivocation. They are asked, how can we trust you, when
such are your views? but such views, as I already have said, need not
have any thing to do with their own practice, merely from the
circumstance that they are contained in their text-books. A theologian
draws out a system; he does it partly as a scientific speculation: but
much more for the sake of others. He is lax for the sake of others, not
of himself. His own standard of action is much higher than that which he
imposes upon men in general. One special reason why religious men, after
drawing out a theory, are unwilling to act upon it themselves, is this:
that they practically acknowledge a broad distinction between their
reason and their conscience; and that they feel the latter to be the
safer guide, though the former may be the clearer, nay even though it be
the truer. They would rather be in error with the sanction of their
conscience, than be right with the mere judgment of their reason. And
again here is this more tangible difficulty in the case of exceptions to
the rule of Veracity, that so very little external help is given us in
drawing the line, as to when untruths are allowable and when not;
whereas that sort of killing which is not murder, is most definitely
marked off by legal enactments, so that it cannot possibly be mistaken
for such killing as _is_ murder. On the other hand the cases of
exemption from the rule of Veracity are left to the private judgment of
the individual, and he may easily be led on from acts which are
allowable to acts which are not. Now this remark does _not_ apply to
such acts as are related in Scripture, as being done by a particular
inspiration, for in such cases there _is_ a command. If I had my own
way, I would oblige society, that is, its great men, its lawyers, its
divines, its literature, publicly to acknowledge as such, those
instances of untruth which are not lies, as for instance untruths in
war; and then there could be no perplexity to the individual Catholic,
for he would not be taking the law into his own hands.

Thirdly, as to playing upon words, or equivocation, I suppose it is from
the English habit, but, without meaning any disrespect to a great Saint,
or wishing to set myself up, or taking my conscience for more than it is
worth, I can only say as a fact, that I admit it as little as the rest
of my countrymen: and, without any reference to the right and the wrong
of the matter, of this I am sure, that, if there is one thing more than
another which prejudices Englishmen against the Catholic Church, it is
the doctrine of great authorities on the subject of equivocation. For
myself, I can fancy myself thinking it was allowable in extreme cases
for me to lie, but never to equivocate. Luther said, "Pecca fortiter." I
anathematize his formal sentiment, but there is a truth in it, when
spoken of material acts.

Fourthly, I think _evasion_, as I have described it, to be perfectly
allowable; indeed, I do not know, who does not use it, under
circumstances; but that a good deal of moral danger is attached to its
use; and that, the cleverer a man is, the more likely he is to pass the
line of Christian duty.

       *       *       *       *       *

But it may be said, that such decisions do not meet the particular
difficulties for which provision is required; let us then take some

1. I do not think it right to tell lies to children, even on this
account, that they are sharper than we think them, and will soon find
out what we are doing; and our example will be a very bad training for
them. And so of equivocation: it is easy of imitation, and we ourselves
shall be sure to get the worst of it in the end.

2. If an early Father defends the patriarch Jacob in his mode of gaining
his father's blessing, on the ground that the blessing was divinely
pledged to him already, that it was his, and that his father and brother
were acting at once against his own rights and the divine will, it does
not follow from this that such conduct is a pattern to us, who have no
supernatural means of determining _when_ an untruth becomes a
_material_, and not a _formal_ lie. It seems to me very dangerous, be it
ever allowable or not, to lie or equivocate in order to preserve some
great temporal or spiritual benefit; nor does St. Alfonso here say any
thing to the contrary, for he is not discussing the question of danger
or expedience.

3. As to Johnson's case of a murderer asking you which way a man had
gone, I should have anticipated that, had such a difficulty happened to
him, his first act would have been to knock the man down, and to call
out for the police; and next, if he was worsted in the conflict, he
would not have given the ruffian the information he asked, at whatever
risk to himself. I think he would have let himself be killed first. I do
not think that he would have told a lie.

4. A secret is a more difficult case. Supposing something has been
confided to me in the strictest secrecy, which could not be revealed
without great disadvantage to another, what am I to do? If I am a
lawyer, I am protected by my profession. I have a right to treat with
extreme indignation any question which trenches on the inviolability of
my position; but, supposing I was driven up into a corner, I think I
should have a right to say an untruth, or that, under such
circumstances, a lie would be _material_, but it is almost an impossible
case, for the law would defend me. In like manner, as a priest, I should
think it lawful to speak as if I knew nothing of what passed in
confession. And I think in these cases, I do in fact possess that
guarantee, that I am not going by private judgment, which just now I
demanded; for society would bear me out, whether as a lawyer or as a
priest, in holding that I had a duty to my client or penitent, such,
that an untruth in the matter was not a lie. A common type of this
permissible denial, be it _material lie_ or _evasion_, is at the moment
supplied to me:--an artist asked a Prime Minister, who was sitting to
him, "What news, my Lord, from France?" He answered, "_I do not know_; I
have not read the Papers."

5. A more difficult question is, when to accept confidence has not been
a duty. Supposing a man wishes to keep the secret that he is the author
of a book, and he is plainly asked on the subject. Here I should ask the
previous question, whether any one has a right to publish what he dare
not avow. It requires to have traced the bearings and results of such a
principle, before being sure of it; but certainly, for myself, I am no
friend of strictly anonymous writing. Next, supposing another has
confided to you the secret of his authorship:--there are persons who
would have no scruple at all in giving a denial to impertinent questions
asked them on the subject. I have heard a great man in his day at
Oxford, warmly contend, as if he could not enter into any other view of
the matter, that, if he had been trusted by a friend with the secret of
his being author of a certain book, and he were asked by a third person,
if his friend was not (as he really was) the author of it, he ought,
without any scruple and distinctly, to answer that he did not know. He
had an existing duty towards the author; he had none towards his
inquirer. The author had a claim on him; an impertinent questioner had
none at all. But here again I desiderate some leave, recognized by
society, as in the case of the formulas "Not at home," and "Not guilty,"
in order to give me the right of saying what is a _material_ untruth.
And moreover, I should here also ask the previous question, Have I any
right to accept such a confidence? have I any right to make such a
promise? and, if it be an unlawful promise, is it binding when it cannot
be kept without a lie? I am not attempting to solve these difficult
questions, but they have to be carefully examined. And now I have said
more than I had intended on a question of casuistry.




February    11, 1811          3
October     26, 1823          2
September    7, 1829        119
July        20, 1834         41
November    28,  "           57
August      18, 1837         29
February    11, 1840        124
    "       21,  "          129
October     29(?)"          132
November         "          135
March       15, 1841        137
  "         20,  "          170
  "         24,  "          208
  "         25,  "          137
April        1,  "          137
  "          4,  "          138
  "          8,  "          138
  "          8,  "          187
  "         26,  "          188
May          5,  "          188
 "           9,  "          138
June        18,  "          189
September   12, 1841        190
October     12,  "          143
   "        17,  "          140
   "        22,  "          140
November    11,  "          145
   "        14,  "          144
December    13,  "          156
   "        24,  "          157
   "        25,  "          159
   "        26,  "          162
March        6, 1842        177
April       14,  "          173
October     16,  "          171
November    22,  "          193
Feb. 25, &  28, 1843        181
March        3,  "          182
  "          8,  "          184
May          4,  "          208
  "         18,  "          209
June        20,  "          178
July        16,  "          179
August      29,  "          213
August      30, 1843        179
September    7,  "          213
    "       29,  "          225
October     14,  "          219
    "       25,  "          221
    "       31,  "          223
November    13,  "          140
1843 or 1844                178
January     22, 1844        226
February    21,  "          226
April        3,  "          205
  "          8,  "          226
July        14,  "          197
September   16,  "          227
November     7,  "          230
   "             "          211
November    16, 1844        228
     "      24,  "          229
1844 (?)                    225
1844 or 1845                167
January      8, 1845        230
March       30,  "          231
April        3,  "          232
   "        16,  "          180
June         1,  "          232
   "        17,  "          180
October      8,  "          234
November     8,  "          155
   "        25,  "          235
January     20, 1846        236
December    6,  1849        185



N.B.--This List, originally made in 1865, is now corrected up to 1890.


VOLS. 1-8. Parochial and Plain Sermons. (_Longmans._)

9. Sermons on Subjects of the Day. (_Longmans._)

10. University Sermons. (_Longmans._)

11. Sermons to Mixed Congregations. (_Burns and Oates._)

12. Occasional Sermons. (_Burns and Oates._)


13. On the Doctrine of Justification. (_Longmans._)

14. On the Development of Christian Doctrine. (_Longmans._)

15. On the Idea of a University. (_Longmans._)

16. An Essay in Aid of a Grammar of Assent. (_Longmans._)


17. Two Essays on Miracles. 1. Of Scripture. 2. Of Ecclesiastical
History. (_Longmans._)

18. Discussions and Arguments. 1. How to accomplish it. 2. The
Antichrist of the Fathers. 3. Scripture and the Creed. 4. Tamworth
Reading-Room. 5. Who's to blame? 6. An Argument for Christianity.

19, 20. Essays Critical and Historical. 2 vols. 1. Poetry. 2.
Rationalism. 3. Apostolical Tradition. 4. De la Mennais. 5. Palmer on
Faith and Unity. 6. St. Ignatius. 7. Prospects of the Anglican Church.
8. The Anglo-American Church. 9. Countess of Huntingdon. 10. Catholicity
of the Anglican Church. 11. The Antichrist of Protestants. 12. Milman's
Christianity. 13. Reformation of the Eleventh Century. 14. Private
Judgment. 15. Davison. 16. Keble. (_Longmans._)


21-23. Historical Sketches. 3 vols. 1. The Turks. 2. Cicero. 3.
Apollonius. 4. Primitive Christianity. 5. Church of the Fathers. 6. St.
Chrysostom. 7. Theodoret. 8. St. Benedict. 9. Benedictine Schools. 10.
Universities. 11. Northmen and Normans. 12. Medieval Oxford. 13.
Convocation of Canterbury. (_Longmans._)


24. The Arians of the Fourth Century. (_Longmans._)

25, 26. Annotated Translation of Athanasius. 2 vols. (_Longmans._)

27. Tracts. 1. Dissertatiunculæ. 2. On the Text of the Seven Epistles of
St. Ignatius. 3. Doctrinal Causes of Arianism. 4. Apollinarianism. 5.
St. Cyril's Formula. 6. Ordo de Tempore. 7. Douay Version of Scripture.
(_Burns and Oates._)


28, 29. The Via Media of the Anglican Church. 2 vols. with Notes. Vol.
I. Prophetical Office of the Church. Vol. II. Occasional Letters and
Tracts. (_Longmans._)

30, 31. Certain Difficulties felt by Anglicans in Catholic Teaching
Considered. 2 vols. Vol. I. Twelve Lectures. Vol. II. Letters to Dr.
Pusey concerning the Bl. Virgin, and to the Duke of Norfolk in Defence
of the Pope and Council. (_Longmans._)

32. Present Position of Catholics in England. (_Longmans._)

33. Apologia pro Vita Sua. (_Longmans._)


34. Verses on Various Occasions. (_Longmans._)

35. Loss and Gain. (_Burns and Oates._)

36. Callista. (_Longmans._)

37. The Dream of Gerontius. (_Longmans._)

¶ It is scarcely necessary to say that the Author submits all that he
has written to the judgment of the Church, whose gift and prerogative it
is to determine what is true and what is false in religious teaching.



"Bishop's House, June 2, 1864.

"My dear Dr. Newman,--

"It was with warm gratification that, after the close of the Synod
yesterday, I listened to the Address presented to you by the clergy of
the diocese, and to your impressive reply. But I should have been little
satisfied with the part of the silent listener, except on the
understanding with myself that I also might afterwards express to you my
own sentiments in my own way.

"We have now been personally acquainted, and much more than acquainted,
for nineteen years, during more than sixteen of which we have stood in
special relation of duty towards each other. This has been one of the
singular blessings which God has given me amongst the cares of the
Episcopal office. What my feelings of respect, of confidence, and of
affection have been towards you, you know well, nor should I think of
expressing them in words. But there is one thing that has struck me in
this day of explanations, which you could not, and would not, be
disposed to do, and which no one could do so properly or so
authentically as I could, and which it seems to me is not altogether
uncalled for, if every kind of erroneous impression that some persons
have entertained with no better evidence than conjecture is to be

"It is difficult to comprehend how, in the face of facts, the notion
should ever have arisen that during your Catholic life, you have been
more occupied with your own thoughts than with the service of religion
and the work of the Church. If we take no other work into consideration
beyond the written productions which your Catholic pen has given to the
world, they are enough for the life's labour of another. There are the
Lectures on Anglican Difficulties, the Lectures on Catholicism in
England, the great work on the Scope and End of University Education,
that on the Office and Work of Universities, the Lectures and Essays on
University Subjects, and the two Volumes of Sermons; not to speak of
your contributions to the Atlantis, which you founded, and to other
periodicals; then there are those beautiful offerings to Catholic
literature, the Lectures on the Turks, Loss and Gain, and Callista, and
though last, not least, the Apologia, which is destined to put many idle
rumours to rest, and many unprofitable surmises; and yet all these
productions represent but a portion of your labour, and that in the
second half of your period of public life.

"These works have been written in the midst of labour and cares of
another kind, and of which the world knows very little. I will specify
four of these undertakings, each of a distinct character, and any one of
which would have made a reputation for untiring energy in the practical

"The first of these undertakings was the establishment of the
congregation of the Oratory of St. Philip Neri--that great ornament and
accession to the force of English Catholicity. Both the London and the
Birmingham Oratory must look to you as their founder and as the
originator of their characteristic excellences; whilst that of
Birmingham has never known any other presidency.

"No sooner was this work fairly on foot than you were called by the
highest authority to commence another, and one of yet greater magnitude
and difficulty, the founding of a University in Ireland. After the
Universities had been lost to the Catholics of these kingdoms for three
centuries, every thing had to be begun from the beginning: the idea of
such an institution to be inculcated, the plan to be formed that would
work, the resources to be gathered, and the staff of superiors and
professors to be brought together. Your name was then the chief point of
attraction which brought these elements together. You alone know what
difficulties you had to conciliate and what to surmount, before the work
reached that state of consistency and promise, which enabled you to
return to those responsibilities in England which you had never laid
aside or suspended. And here, excuse me if I give expression to a fancy
which passed through my mind.

"I was lately reading a poem, not long published, from the MSS. De Rerum
Natura, by Neckham, the foster-brother of Richard the Lion-hearted. He
quotes an old prophecy, attributed to Merlin, and with a sort of wonder,
as if recollecting that England owed so much of its literary learning to
that country; and the prophecy says that after long years Oxford will
pass into Ireland--'Vada boum suo tempore transibunt in Hiberniam.' When
I read this, I could not but indulge the pleasant fancy that in the days
when the Dublin University shall arise in material splendour, an
allusion to this prophecy might form a poetic element in the inscription
on the pedestal of the statue which commemorates its first Rector.

"The original plan of an Oratory did not contemplate any parochial work,
but you could not contemplate so many souls in want of pastors without
being prompt and ready at the beck of authority to strain all your
efforts in coming to their help. And this brings me to the third and the
most continuous of those labours to which I have alluded. The mission in
Alcester Street, its church and schools, were the first work of the
Birmingham Oratory. After several years of close and hard work, and a
considerable call upon the private resources of the Fathers who had
established this congregation, it was delivered over to other hands, and
the Fathers removed to the district of Edgbaston, where up to that time
nothing Catholic had appeared. Then arose under your direction the large
convent of the Oratory, the church expanded by degrees into its present
capaciousness, a numerous congregation has gathered and grown in it;
poor schools and other pious institutions have grown up in connexion
with it, and, moreover, equally at your expense and that of your
brethren, and, as I have reason to know, at much inconvenience, the
Oratory has relieved the other clergy of Birmingham all this while by
constantly doing the duty in the poor-house and gaol of Birmingham.

"More recently still, the mission and the poor school at Smethwick owe
their existence to the Oratory. And all this while the founder and
father of these religious works has added to his other solicitudes the
toil of frequent preaching, of attendance in the confessional, and other
parochial duties.

"I have read on this day of its publication the seventh part of the
Apologia, and the touching allusion in it to the devotedness of the
Catholic clergy to the poor in seasons of pestilence reminds me that
when the cholera raged so dreadfully at Bilston, and the two priests of
the town were no longer equal to the number of cases to which they were
hurried day and night, I asked you to lend me two fathers to supply the
place of other priests whom I wished to send as a further aid. But you
and Father St. John preferred to take the place of danger which I had
destined for others, and remained at Bilston till the worst was over.

"The fourth work which I would notice is one more widely known. I refer
to the school for the education of the higher classes, which at the
solicitation of many friends you have founded and attached to the
Oratory. Surely after reading this bare enumeration of work done, no man
will venture to say that Dr. Newman is leading a comparatively inactive
life in the service of the Church.

"To spare, my dear Dr. Newman, any further pressure on those feelings
with which I have already taken so large a liberty, I will only add one
word more for my own satisfaction. During our long intercourse there is
only one subject on which, after the first experience, I have measured
my words with some caution, and that has been where questions bearing on
ecclesiastical duty have arisen. I found some little caution necessary,
because you were always so prompt and ready to go even beyond the
slightest intimation of my wish or desires.

"That God may bless you with health, life, and all the spiritual good
which you desire, you and your brethren of the Oratory, is the earnest
prayer now and often of,

"My dear Dr. Newman,

"Your affectionate friend and faithful servant in Christ,




It requires some words of explanation why I allow myself to sound my own
praises so loudly, as I am doing by adding to my Volume the following
Letters, written to me last year by large bodies of my Catholic
brethren, Priests, and Laymen, in the course or on the conclusion of the
publication of my Apologia. I have two reasons for doing so.

1. It seems hardly respectful to them, and hardly fair to myself, to
practise self-denial in a matter, which after all belongs to others as
well as to me. Bodies of men become authorities by the fact of being
bodies, over and above the personal claims of the individuals who
constitute them. To have received such unusual Testimonials in my
favour, as I have to produce, and then to have let both those
Testimonials and the generous feelings which dictated them be wasted,
and come to nought, would have been a rudeness of which I could not bear
to be guilty. Far be it from me to show such ingratitude to those who
were especially "friends in need." I am too proud of their approbation
not to publish it to the world.

2. But I have a further reason. The belief obtains extensively in the
country at large, that Catholics, and especially the Priesthood, disavow
the mode and form, in which I am accustomed to teach the Catholic faith,
as if they were not generally recognized, but something special and
peculiar to myself; as if, whether for the purposes of controversy, or
from the traditions of an earlier period of my life, I did not exhibit
Catholicism pure and simple, as the bulk of its professors manifest it.
Such testimonials, then, as now follow, from as many as 558 priests,
that is, not far from half of the clergy of England, secular and
religious, from the Bishop and clergy of a diocese at the Antipodes, and
from so great and authoritative a body as the German Congress assembled
last year at Wurzburg, scatter to the winds a suspicion, which it is not
less painful, I am persuaded, to numbers of those Protestants who
entertain it, than it is injurious to me who have to bear it.


The following Address was signed by 110 of the Westminster clergy,
including all the Canons, the Vicars General, a great number of secular
priests, and five Doctors in theology; Fathers of the Society of Jesus,
Fathers of the Order of St. Dominic, of St. Francis, of the Oratory, of
the Passion, of Charity, Oblates of St. Charles, and Marists.

"London, March 15, 1864.

"Very Reverend and Dear Sir,

"We, the undersigned Priests of the Diocese of Westminster, tender to
you our respectful thanks for the service you have done to religion, as
well as to the interests of literary morality, by your Reply to the
calumnies of [a popular writer of the day.]

"We cannot but regard it as a matter of congratulation that your
assailant should have associated the cause of the Catholic Priesthood
with the name of one so well fitted to represent its dignity, and to
defend its honour, as yourself.

"We recognize in this latest effort of your literary power one further
claim, besides the many you have already established, to the gratitude
and veneration of Catholics, and trust that the reception which it has
met with on all sides may be the omen of new successes which you are
destined to achieve in the vindication of the teaching and principles of
the Church.

"We are,

"Very Reverend and Dear Sir,

"Your faithful and affectionate Servants in Christ."

(_The Subscriptions follow._)

"To the Very Rev.

"John Henry Newman, D.D."


"London, April 19, 1864.

"Very Rev. and Dear Sir,

"The Academia of Catholic Religion, at their meeting held to-day, under
the Presidency of the Cardinal Archbishop, have instructed us to write
to you in their behalf.

"As they have learned, with great satisfaction, that it is your
intention to publish a defence of Catholic Veracity, which has been
assailed in your person, they are precluded from asking you that that
defence might be made by word of mouth, and in London, as they would
otherwise have done.

"Composed, as the Academia is, mainly of Laymen, they feel that it is
not out of their province to express their indignation that your
opponent should have chosen, while praising the Catholic Laity, to do so
at the expense of the Clergy, between whom and themselves, in this as in
all other matters, there exists a perfect identity of principle and

"It is because, in such a matter, your cause is the cause of all
Catholics, that we congratulate ourselves on the rashness of the
opponent that has thrown the defence of that cause into your hands.

"We remain,

"Very Reverend and Dear Sir,

"Your very faithful Servants,


"EDW. LUCAS, _Secretaries._

"To the Very Rev. John Henry Newman, D.D.,

"Provost of the Birmingham Oratory."

The above was moved at the meeting by Lord Petre, and seconded by the
Hon. Charles Langdale.


In this Diocese there were in 1864, according to the Directory of the
year, 136 Priests.

"June 1, 1864.

"Very Reverend and Dear Sir,

"In availing ourselves of your presence at the Diocesan Synod to offer
you our hearty thanks for your recent vindication of the honour of the
Catholic Priesthood, We, the Provost and Chapter of the Cathedral, and
the Clergy, Secular and Regular, of the Diocese of Birmingham, cannot
forego the assertion of a special right, as your neighbours and
colleagues, to express our veneration and affection for one whose
fidelity to the dictates of conscience, in the use of the highest
intellectual gifts, has won even from opponents unbounded admiration and

"To most of us you are personally known. Of some, indeed, you were, in
years long past, the trusted guide, to whom they owe more than can be
expressed in words; and all are conscious that the ingenuous fulness of
your answer to a false and unprovoked accusation, has intensified their
interest in the labours and trials of your life. While, then, we resent
the indignity to which you have been exposed, and lament the pain and
annoyance which the manifestation of yourself must have cost you, we
cannot but rejoice that, in the fulfilment of a duty, you have allowed
neither the unworthiness of your assailant to shield him from rebuke,
nor the sacredness of your inmost motives to deprive that rebuke of the
only form which could at once complete his discomfiture, free your own
name from the obloquy which prejudice had cast upon it, and afford
invaluable aid to honest seekers after Truth.

"Great as is the work which you have already done, Very Reverend Sir,
permit us to express a hope that a greater yet remains for you to
accomplish. In an age and in a country in which the very foundations of
religious faith are exposed to assault, we rejoice in numbering among
our brethren one so well qualified by learning and experience to defend
that priceless deposit of Truth, in obtaining which you have counted as
gain the loss of all things most dear and precious. And we esteem
ourselves happy in being able to offer you that support and
encouragement which the assurance of our unfeigned admiration and regard
may be able to give you under your present trials and future labours.

"That you may long have strength to labour for the Church of God and the
glory of His Holy Name is, Very Reverend and Dear Sir, our heartfelt and
united prayer."

(_The Subscriptions follow._)

"To the Very Rev. John Henry Newman, D.D."


The following Address, as is stated in the first paragraph, comes from
more than 70 Priests:--

"Hull, May 9, 1864.

"Very Rev. and Dear Dr. Newman,

"At a recent meeting of the clergy of the Diocese of Beverley, held in
York, at which upwards of seventy priests were present, special
attention was called to your correspondence with [a popular writer]; and
such was the enthusiasm with which your name was received--such was the
admiration expressed of the dignity with which you had asserted the
claims of the Catholic Priesthood in England to be treated with becoming
courtesy and respect--and such was the strong and all-pervading sense of
the invaluable service which you had thus rendered, not only to faith
and morals, but to good manners so far as regarded religious controversy
in this country, that I was requested, as Chairman, to become the voice
of the meeting, and to express to you as strongly and as earnestly as I
could, how heartily the whole of the clergy of this diocese desire to
thank you for services to religion as well-timed as they are in
themselves above and beyond all commendation, services which the
Catholics of England will never cease to hold in most grateful
remembrance. God, in His infinite wisdom and great mercy, has raised you
up to stand prominently forth in the glorious work of re-establishing in
this country the holy faith which in good old times shed such lustre
upon it. We all lament that, in the order of nature, you have so few
years before you in which to fight against false teaching that good
fight in which you have been so victoriously engaged of late. But our
prayers are that you may long be spared, and may possess to the last all
your vigour, and all that zeal for the advancement of our holy faith,
which imparts such a charm to the productions of your pen.

"I esteem it a great honour and a great privilege to have been deputed,
as the representative of the clergy of the Diocese of Beverley, to
tender you the fullest expression of our most grateful thanks, and the
assurance of our prayers for your health and eternal happiness.

"I am,

"Very Rev. and Dear Sir,

"With sentiments of profound respect,

"Yours most faithfully in Christ,


"The Very Rev. Dr. Newman."


The Secular Clergy of Liverpool amounted in 1864 to 103, and of Salford
to 76.

"Preston, July 27, 1864.

"Very Rev. and Dear Sir,

"It may seem, perhaps, that the Clergy of Lancashire have been slow to
address you; but it would be incorrect to suppose that they have been
indifferent spectators of the conflict in which you have been recently
engaged. This is the first opportunity that has presented itself, and
they gladly avail themselves of their annual meeting in Preston to
tender to you the united expression of their heartfelt sympathy and

"The atrocious imputation, out of which the late controversy arose, was
felt as a personal affront by them, one and all, conscious as they were,
that it was mainly owing to your position as a distinguished Catholic
ecclesiastic, that the charge was connected with your name.

"While they regret the pain you must needs have suffered, they cannot
help rejoicing that it has afforded you an opportunity of rendering a
new and most important service to their holy religion. Writers, who are
not overscrupulous about the truth themselves, have long used the charge
of untruthfulness as an ever ready weapon against the Catholic Clergy.
Partly from the frequent repetition of this charge, partly from a
consciousness that, instead of undervaluing the truth, they have ever
prized it above every earthly treasure, partly, too, from the difficulty
of obtaining a hearing in their own defence, they have generally passed
it by in silence. They thank you for coming forward as their champion:
your own character required no vindication. It was their battle more
than your own that you fought. They know and feel how much pain it has
caused you to bring so prominently forward your own life and motives,
but they now congratulate you on the completeness of your triumph, as
admitted alike by friend and enemy.

"In addition to answering the original accusation, you have placed them
under a new obligation, by giving to all, who read the English language,
a work which, for literary ability and the lucid exposition of many
difficult and abstruse points, forms an invaluable contribution to our

"They fervently pray that God may give you health and length of days,
and, if it please Him, some other cause in which to use for His glory
the great powers bestowed upon you.

"Signed on behalf of the Meeting,


"The Very Rev. J. H. Newman."


The Secular Priests on Mission in 1864 in this Diocese were 64.

"Durham, Sept. 22, 1864.

"My Dear Dr. Newman,

"At the annual meeting of the Clergy of the Diocese of Hexham and
Newcastle, held a few days ago at Newcastle-upon-Tyne, I was
commissioned by them to express to you their sincere sympathy, on
account of the slanderous accusations, to which you have been so
unjustly exposed. We are fully aware that these foul calumnies were
intended to injure the character of the whole body of the Catholic
Clergy, and that your distinguished name was singled out, in order that
they might be more effectually propagated. It is well that these
poisonous shafts were thus aimed, as no one could more triumphantly
repel them. The 'Apologia pro Vitâ suâ' will, if possible, render still
more illustrious the name of its gifted author, and be a lasting
monument of the victory of truth, and the signal overthrow of an
arrogant and reckless assailant.

"It may appear late for us now to ask to join in your triumph, but as
the Annual Meeting of the Northern Clergy does not take place till this
time, it is the first occasion offered us to present our united
congratulations, and to declare to you, that by none of your brethren
are you more esteemed and venerated, than by the Clergy of the Diocese
of Hexham and Newcastle.

"Wishing that Almighty God may prolong your life many more years for the
defence of our holy religion and the honour of your brethren,

"I am, dear Dr. Newman,

"Yours sincerely in Jesus Christ,


"The Very Rev. J. H. Newman."


"September 15, 1864.


"The undersigned, President of the Catholic Congress of Germany
assembled in Würzburg, has been commissioned to express to you, Very
Rev. and Dear Sir, its deep-felt gratitude for your late able defence of
the Catholic Clergy, not only of England, but of the whole world,
against the attacks of its enemies.

"The Catholics of Germany unite with the Catholics of England in
testifying to you their profound admiration and sympathy, and pray that
the Almighty may long preserve your valuable life.

"The above Resolution was voted by the Congress with acclamation.

"Accept, very Rev. and Dear Sir, the expression of the high
consideration with which I am

"Your most obedient servant,


"The Very Rev. J. H. Newman."


"Hobart Town, Tasmania, November 22, 1864.

"Very Rev. and Dear Sir,

"By the last month's post we at length received your admirable book,
entitled, 'Apologia pro Vitâ suâ,' and the pamphlet, 'What then does Dr.
Newman mean?'

"By this month's mail, we wish to express our heartfelt gratification
and delight for being possessed of a work so triumphant in maintaining
truth, and so overwhelming in confounding arrogance and error, as the

"No doubt, your adversary, resting on the deep-seated prejudice of our
fellow-countrymen in the United Kingdom, calculated upon establishing
his own fame as a keen-sighted polemic, as a shrewd and truth-loving
man, upon the fallen reputation of one, who, as he would
demonstrate,--yes, that he would,--set little or no value on truth, and
who, therefore, would deservedly sink into obscurity, henceforward
rejected and despised!

"Aman of old erected a gibbet at the gate of the city, on which an
unsuspecting and an unoffending man, one marked as a victim, was to be
exposed to the gaze and derision of the people, in order that his own
dignity and fame might be exalted; but a divine Providence ordained
otherwise. The history of the judgment that fell upon Aman, has been
recorded in Holy Writ, it is to be presumed, as a warning to vain and
unscrupulous men, even in our days. There can be no doubt, a moral
gibbet, full 'fifty cubits high,' had been prepared some time, on which
you were to be exposed, for the pity at least, if not for the scorn and
derision of so many, who had loved and venerated you through life!

"But the effort made in the forty-eight pages of the redoubtable
pamphlet, 'What then does Dr. Newman Mean?'--the production of a bold,
unscrupulous man, with a coarse mind, and regardless of inflicting pain
on the feelings of another, has failed,--marvellously failed,--and he
himself is now exhibited not only in our fatherland, but even at the
Antipodes, in fact wherever the English language is spoken or read, as a
shallow pretender, one quite incompetent to treat of matters of such
undying interest as those he presumed to interfere with.

"We fervently pray the Almighty, that you may be spared to His Church
for many years to come,--that to Him alone the glory of this noble work
may be given,--and to you the reward in eternal bliss!

"And from this distant land we beg to convey to you, Very Rev. and Dear
Sir, the sentiments of our affectionate respect, and deep veneration."

(_The Subscriptions follow, of the Bishop Vicar-General and eighteen

"The Very Rev. Dr. Newman,
&c. &c. &c."




On application of the Editor of Dr. Whately's Correspondence, the
following four letters were sent to her for publication: they are here
given entire. It will be observed that they are of the same date as my
letter to Dr. Hampden at p. 57.


"Dublin, October 25, 1834.

"My dear Newman,

"A most shocking report concerning you has reached me, which indeed
carries such an improbability on the face of it that you may perhaps
wonder at my giving it a thought; and at first I did not, but finding it
repeated from different quarters, it seems to me worth contradicting for
the sake of your character. Some Oxford undergraduates, I find, openly
report that when I was at Oriel last spring you absented yourself from
chapel on purpose to avoid receiving the Communion along with me; and
that you yourself declared this to be the case.

"I would not notice every idle rumour; but this has been so confidently
and so long asserted that it would be a satisfaction to me to be able to
declare its falsity as a fact, from your authority. I did indeed at once
declare my utter unbelief; but then this has only the weight of my
opinion; though an opinion resting I think on no insufficient grounds. I
did not profess to rest my disbelief on our long, intimate, and
confidential friendship, which would make it your right and your
duty--if I did any thing to offend you or any thing you might think
materially wrong--to remonstrate with me;--but on your general
character; which I was persuaded would have made you incapable, even had
no such close connexion existed between us, of conduct so unchristian
and inhuman. But, as I said, I should like for your sake to be able to
contradict the report from your own authority.

"Ever yours very truly,



"Oriel College, October 28, 1834.

"My dear Lord,

"My absence from the Sacrament in the College Chapel on the Sunday you
were in Oxford, was occasioned solely and altogether by my having it on
that day in St. Mary's; and I am pretty sure, if I may trust my memory,
that I did not even know of your Grace's presence there, till after the
Service. Most certainly such knowledge would not have affected my
attendance. I need not say, this being the case, that the report of my
having made any statement on the subject is quite unfounded; indeed,
your letter of this morning is the first information I have had in any
shape of the existence of the report.

"I am happy in being thus able to afford an explanation as satisfactory
to you, as the kind feelings which you have ever entertained towards me
could desire;--yet, on honest reflection, I cannot conceal from myself,
that it was generally a relief to me, to see so little of your Grace,
when you were at Oxford: and it is a greater relief now to have an
opportunity of saying so to yourself. I have ever wished to observe the
rule, never to make a public charge against another behind his back,
and, though in the course of conversation and the urgency of accidental
occurrences it is sometimes difficult to keep to it, yet I trust I have
not broken it, especially in your own case: i.e. though my most intimate
friends know how deeply I deplore the line of ecclesiastical policy
adopted under your archiepiscopal sanction, and though in society I may
have clearly shown that I have an opinion one way rather than the other,
yet I have never in my intention, never (as I believe) at all, spoken of
your Grace in a serious way before strangers;--indeed mixing very little
in general society, and not overapt to open myself in it, I have had
little temptation to do so. Least of all should I so forget myself as to
take undergraduates into my confidence in such a matter.

"I wish I could convey to your Grace the mixed and very painful
feelings, which the late history of the Irish Church has raised in
me:--the union of her members with men of heterodox views, and the
extinction (without ecclesiastical sanction) of half her Candlesticks,
the witnesses and guarantees of the Truth and trustees of the Covenant.
I willingly own that both in my secret judgment and my mode of speaking
concerning you to my friends, I have had great alternations and changes
of feeling,--defending, then blaming your policy, next praising your own
self and protesting against your measures, according as the affectionate
remembrances which I had of you rose against my utter aversion of the
secular and unbelieving policy in which I considered the Irish Church to
be implicated. I trust I shall never be forgetful of the kindness you
uniformly showed me during your residence in Oxford: and anxiously hope
that no duty to Christ and His Church may ever interfere with the
expression of my sense of it. However, on the present opportunity, I am
conscious to myself, that I am acting according to the dictates both of
duty and gratitude, if I beg your leave to state my persuasion, that the
perilous measures in which your Grace has acquiesced are but the
legitimate offspring of those principles, difficult to describe in few
words, with which your reputation is especially associated; principles
which bear upon the very fundamentals of all argument and investigation,
and affect almost every doctrine and every maxim by which our faith or
our conduct is to be guided. I can feel no reluctance to confess, that,
when I first was noticed by your Grace, gratitude to you and admiration
of your powers wrought upon me; and, had not something from within
resisted, I should certainly have adopted views on religious and social
duty, which seem to my present judgment to be based in the pride of
reason and to tend towards infidelity, and which in your own case
nothing but your Grace's high religious temper and the unclouded faith
of early piety has been able to withstand.

"I am quite confident, that, however you may regard this judgment, you
will give me credit, not only for honesty, but for a deeper feeling in
thus laying it before you.

"May I be suffered to add, that your name is ever mentioned in my
prayers, and to subscribe myself

"Your Grace's very sincere friend and servant,



"Dublin, November 3, 1834.

"My dear Newman,

"I cannot forbear writing again to express the great satisfaction I feel
in the course I adopted; which has, eventually, enabled me to contradict
a report which was more prevalent and more confidently upheld than I
could have thought possible: and which, while it was perhaps likely to
hurt my character with some persons, was injurious to yours in the eyes
of the best men. For what idea must any one have had of religion--or at
least of your religion--who was led to think there was any truth in the
imputation to you of such uncharitable arrogance!

"But it is a rule with me, not to cherish, even on the strongest
assertions, any belief or even suspicion, to the prejudice of any one
whom I have any reason to think well of, till I have carefully inquired,
and dispassionately heard both sides. And I think if others were to
adopt the same rule, I should not myself be quite so much abused as I
have been.

"I am well aware indeed that one cannot expect all, even good men, to
think alike on every point, even after they shall have heard both sides;
and that we may expect many to judge, after all, very harshly of those
who do differ from them: for, God help us! what will become of men if
they receive no more mercy than they show to each other! But at least,
if the rule were observed, men would not condemn a brother on mere vague
popular rumour, about principles (as in my case) 'difficult to describe
in few words,' and with which his 'reputation is associated.' My own
reputation I know is associated, to a very great degree, with what are
in fact calumnious imputations, originated in exaggerated, distorted, or
absolutely false statements, for which even those who circulate them, do
not, for the most part, pretend to have any ground except popular
rumour: like the Jews at Rome; 'as for this way, we know that it is
every where spoken against.'

"For I have ascertained that a very large proportion of those who join
in the outcry against my works, confess, or even boast, that they have
never read them. And in respect of the measure you advert to--the Church
Temporalities Act--(which of course I shall not now discuss), it is
curious to see how many of those who load me with censure for
acquiescing in it, receive with open arms, and laud to the skies, the
Primate; who was consulted on the measure--as was natural, considering
his knowledge of Irish affairs, and his influence--long before me; and
gave his consent to it; differing from Ministers only on a point of
detail, whether the revenues of six Sees, or of ten, should be

"Of course, every one is bound ultimately to decide according to his own
judgment; nor do I mean to shelter myself under his example: but only to
point out what strange notions of justice those have, who acquit with
applause the leader, and condemn the follower in the same individual

"Far be it from any servant of our Master, to feel surprise or anger at
being thus treated; it is only an admonition to me to avoid treating
others in a similar manner; and not to 'judge another's servant,' at
least without a fair hearing.

"You do me no more than justice, in feeling confident that I shall give
you credit both for 'honesty and for a deeper feeling' in freely laying
your opinions before me: and besides this, you might have been no less
confident, from your own experience, that, long since--whenever it was
that you changed your judgment respecting me--if you had freely and
calmly remonstrated with me on any point where you thought me going
wrong, I should have listened to you with that readiness and candour and
deference, which as you well know, I always showed, in the times when
'we took sweet counsel together, and walked in the house of God as
friends;'--when we consulted together about so many practical measures,
and about almost all the principal points in my publications.

"I happen to have before me a letter from you just eight years ago, in
which, after saying that 'there are few things you wish more sincerely
than to be known as a friend of mine,' and attributing to me, in the
warmest and most flattering terms, a much greater share in the forming
of your mind than I could presume to claim, you bear a testimony, in
which I do most heartily concur, to the _freedom_ at least of our
_intercourse_, and the readiness and respect with which you were
listened to. Your words are: 'Much as I owe to Oriel in the way of
mental improvement, to none, as I think, do I owe so much as to
yourself. I know who it was first gave me heart to look about me after
my election, and taught me to think correctly, and--strange office for
an instructor--to rely upon myself. Nor can I forget that it has been at
your kind suggestion, that I have since been led to employ myself in the
consideration of several subjects, which I cannot doubt have been very
beneficial to my mind.'

"If in all this I was erroneous,--if I have misled you, or any one else,
into 'the pride of reason,' or any other kind of pride,--or if I have
entertained, or led others into, any wrong opinions, I can only say I
sincerely regret it. And again I rejoice if I have been the means of
contributing to form in any one that 'high religious temper and
unclouded faith' of which I not only believe, with you, that they are
able to withstand tendencies towards infidelity, but also, that
_without_ them, no correctness of abstract opinions is worth much. But
what I meant to point out, is, that there was plainly nothing to
preclude you from offering friendly admonition (when your view of my
principles changed), with a full confidence of being at least patiently
and kindly listened to.

"I for my part could not bring myself to find relief in escaping the
society of an old friend,--with whom I had been accustomed to frank
discussion,--on account of my differing from him as to certain
principles, whether through a change of _his_ views, or (much more) of
_my own_,--till at least I had made full trial of private and
affectionate remonstrance and free discussion. Even a 'man that is a
heretic,' we are told, even a ruler of a Church is not to reject, till
after repeated admonitions.

"But though your regard for me does not show itself such as I think mine
would have been under similar circumstances, I will not therefore reject
what remains of it. Let us pray for each other that it may please God to
enlighten whichever of us is, on any point, in error, and recall him to
the truth; and that at any rate we may hold fast that charity, without
which all knowledge, and all faith, that could remove mountains, will
profit us nothing.

"I fear you will read with a jaundiced eye,--if you venture to read it
at all--any publication of mine; but 'for auld lang syne' I take
advantage of a frank to enclose you my last two addresses to my clergy.

"Very sincerely yours,



"Oriel, November 11, 1834.

"My dear Lord,

"The remarks contained in your last letter do not come upon me by
surprise, and I can only wish that I may be as able to explain myself to
you, as I do with a clear and honest conscience to myself. Your Grace
will observe that the letter of mine from which you make an extract, was
written when I _was_ in habits of intimacy with you, in which I have not
been of late years. It does not at all follow, because I could then
speak freely to you, that I might at another time. Opportunity is the
chief thing in such an office as delivering to a superior an opinion
about himself. Though I never concealed my opinion from you, I have
never been forward. I have spoken when place and time admitted, when my
opinion was asked, when I was called to your side and was made your
counsellor. No such favourable circumstances have befallen me of late
years,--if I must now state in explanation what in truth has never
occurred to me in _this fulness_, till now I am called to reflect upon
my own conduct and to account for an apparent omission. I have spoken
the first opportunity you have given me; and I am persuaded good very
seldom comes of _volunteering_ a remonstrance.

"Again, I cannot doubt for an instant that you have long been aware in a
measure that my opinions differed from your Grace's. You knew it when at
Oxford, for you often found me differing from you. You must have felt
it, at the time you left Oxford for Dublin. You must have known it from
hearsay in consequence of the book I have published. What indeed can
account for my want of opportunities to speak to you freely my mind, but
the feeling on your part, (which, if existing, is nothing but a fair
reason,) that my views are different from yours?

"And that difference is certainly of no recent date. I tacitly allude to
it in the very letter you quote--in which, I recollect well that the
words 'strange office for an instructor,--_to rely upon myself_,' were
intended to convey to you that, much as I valued (and still value) your
great kindness and the advantage of your countenance to me at that time,
yet even then I did not fall in with the line of opinions which you had
adopted. In them I never acquiesced. Doubtless I may have used at times
sentiments and expressions, which I should not now use; but I believe
these had no root in my mind, and as such they were mere idle words
which I ought ever to be ashamed of, because they _were_ idle. But the
opinions to which I especially alluded in my former letter as associated
by the world with your Grace's name under the title of 'Liberal,' (but
not, as you suppose, received by me on the world's authority,) are those
which may be briefly described as the Anti-superstition notions; and to
these I do not recollect ever assenting. Connected with these I would
instance the undervaluing of Antiquity, and resting on one's own
reasonings, judgments, definitions, &c., rather than authority and
precedent; and I think I gave very little in to this;--for a very short
time too (if at all), in to the notion that the State, as such, had
nothing to do with religion. On the other hand, whatever I held then
deliberately, I believe I hold now; though perhaps I may not consider
them as points of such prominent importance, or with precisely the same
bearing as I did then:--as the abolition of the Jewish Sabbath, the
unscripturalness of the doctrine of imputed righteousness (i.e. our
Lord's active obedience)--the mistakes of the so-called Evangelical
system, the independence of the Church; the genius of the Gospel as a
Law of Liberty, and the impropriety of forming geological theories from
Scripture. Of course every one changes in opinion between twenty and
thirty; doubtless, I have changed; yet I am not conscious that I have so
much _changed_, as made up my mind on points on which I had no opinion.
E.g. I had no opinion about the Catholic Question till 1829. No one can
truly say I was ever _for_ the Catholics; but I was not against them. In
fact I did not enter into the state of the question at all.

"Then as to my change of judgment as to the character of your Grace's
opinions, it is natural that, when two persons pursue different lines
from the same point, they should not discover their divergence for a
long while; especially if there be any kind feeling in the one towards
the other. It was not for a very long time that I discovered that your
opinions were (as I now think them) but part of intellectual views, so
different from your own inward mind and character, so peculiar in
themselves, and (if you will let me add) so dangerous. For a long time I
thought them to be but different; for a longer, to be but in parts
dangerous; but their full character in this respect came on me almost on
a sudden. I heard at Naples the project of destroying the Irish Sees,
and at first indignantly rejected the notion, which some one suggested,
that your Grace had acquiesced in it. I thought I recollected correctly
your Grace's opinion of the inherent rights of the Christian Church, and
I thought you never would allow men of this world so to insult it. When
I returned to England, all was over. I was silent on the same principle
that you are silent about it in your letter; that it was not the time
for speaking; and I only felt, what I hinted at when I wrote last, a
bitter grief, which prompted me, when the act was irretrievable, to hide
myself from you. However, I have spoken, with whatever pain to myself,
the first opportunity you have given me.

"I might appeal to my conscience without fear in proof of the delight it
would give me at this time to associate my name with yours, and to stand
forward as your friend and defender, however humble. I should hope you
know me enough to be sure, that, however great my faults are, I have no
fear of man such as to restrain me, if I could feel I had a call that
way. But may God help me, as I will ever strive to fulfil my first duty,
the defence of His Church, and of the doctrine of the old Fathers, in
opposition to all the innovations and profanities which are rising round

"My dear Lord,

"Ever yours most sincerely and gratefully,


"P.S. I feel much obliged by your kindness in sending me your Addresses
to your clergy, which I value highly for your Grace's sake."



When I urged on one occasion an "understanding" I had had with the
publishers of the "Encyclopædia," he answered, June 5, 1828, "I greatly
dislike the word 'understanding,' which is always _misunderstood_, and
which occasions more mischief than any other in our language, unless it
be its cousin-german 'delicacy.'"



A letter of Mr. F. Faber's to a friend has just now (March, 1878) come
into my hands, in which he says, "I have had a long correspondence with
Newman on the subject of my uncle's saying he was 'a concealed Roman
Catholic' long before he left us. It ends in my uncle making an

NOTE ON PAGES 194-196.

I have said above, "Dr. Russell had, perhaps, more to do with my
conversion than any one else. He called on me in passing through Oxford
in the summer of 1843; and I think I took him over some of the buildings
of the University. He called again another summer, on his way from
Dublin to London. I do not recollect that he said a word on the subject
of religion on either occasion. He sent me at different times several
letters.... He also gave me one or two books; Veron's Rule of Faith and
some Treatises of the Wallenburghs was one; a volume of St. Alfonso
Liguori's sermons was another.... At a later date Dr. Russell sent me a
large bundle of penny or halfpenny books of devotion," &c.

On this passage I observe first that he told me, on one occasion of my
seeing him since the publication of the "Apologia," that I was so far in
error, that he had called on me at Oxford once only, not twice. He was
quite positive on the point; it was when he was, I believe, on his way
to Rome to escape a bishopric.

Secondly, my own mistake has led to some vagueness or inaccuracy in the
statements made by others. In a friendly notice of Dr. Russell upon his
death, it is said, in the "Times":--

"Personally he was unknown to the leaders of the movement, but his
reputation stood high in Oxford. He was often applied to for information
and suggestion on the points arising in the Tractarian controversy.
Through a formal call made by him on Dr. Newman a correspondence arose,
which resulted in the final determination of the latter to join the
Roman Catholic Church."

On this I remark--(1) that in 1841-5, Dr. Russell was not well known in
Oxford, and it cannot be said that then "his reputation stood high"
there; (2) that he never was "applied to for information" by any one of
us, as far as my knowledge goes; and (3) that his call on me in 1841(3?)
was in no sense "formal;" I had not expected it; I think he introduced
himself, though he may have had a letter from Dr. Wiseman; and no
"correspondence" arose in consequence. He may perhaps have sent me three
letters, independent of each other, in five years; and, as far as I
know, he was unaware of his part in my conversion, till he saw my notice
of it in the "Apologia."



"Nov. 18, 1844.--I hope I shall not annoy you if I copy out for you part
of a letter which I had the other day from Judge Coleridge:--

"'I was struck with part of a letter from A. B., expressing a wish that
Newman should know how warmly he was loved, honoured, and sympathized
with by large numbers of Churchmen, so that he might not feel solitary,
or, as it were, cast out. What think you of a private address, carefully
guarded against the appearance of making him the head of a party, but
only assuring him of gratitude, veneration, and love?' &c., &c.

"I thought I would just let you understand how such a person as
Coleridge feels."



"The Very Rev. Dr. Newman has this week revisited Oxford for the first
time since 1845. He has been staying with the Rev. S. Wayte, President
of Trinity College, of which society Dr. Newman was formerly a scholar,
and has recently been elected an Honorary Fellow. On Tuesday evening Dr.
Newman met a number of old friends at dinner at the President's
lodgings, and on the following day he paid a long visit to Dr. Pusey at
Christ Church. He also spent a considerable time at Keble College, in
which he was greatly interested. In the evening Dr. Newman dined in
Trinity College Hall at the high table, attired in his academical dress,
and the scholars were invited to meet him afterwards. He returned to
Birmingham on Thursday morning."



I have received the following on the subject of the oil of St. Walburga
from a German friend, the Rev. Corbinian Wandinger, which is a
serviceable addition to what is said upon it in Note B. He says:--

"In your 'Apologia,' 2nd Edition, p. 302, you say you neither have, nor
ever have had, the means of going into the question of the
miraculousness of the oil of St. Walburga. By good chance, there has
arisen a contest not long ago between two papers, a catholic and a
free-thinking one, about this very question, from which I collected
materials. Afterwards I asked Professor Suttner, of Eichstädt, if the
defender of the miraculousness might be fully and in every point
trusted, and I was answered he might, since he was nobody else but the
parson of St. Walburga, Rev. Mr. Brudlacher.

"You know all the older literature of the oil of St. Walburga, therefore
I restrict myself to statements of a later date than 1625.

"First of the attempts to explain the oil as a natural produce of the

"Some thought of ordinary rock-oil. But the slightest experiment proves
that origin, properties, and effect of the oil of St. Walburga and
petroleum have nothing common with each other.

"Others thought of a salt-rock, and of solution of the salt particles.
But the marble slab from which the oil drops is of Jura-chalk, and in
the whole Jura is not a single particle of salt to be found, and the
liquor itself does not in the least savour of salt; besides that, if
this were the case, the stone must have crumbled into pieces long since,
whilst it is quite massive still.

"Others thought of humour in the air, or the so-called sweating of the
stones. But why does the slab which bears the holy relics alone sweat?
and, why do all others beside, above, beneath it, in and out of the
altar-cave, though being of the same nature, remain perfectly dry? Why
should it sweat, the whole church being so dry that not a single humid
spot of a hand's breadth is visible? Why does this slab not sweat except
within a certain period, that is from October 12, the anniversary of
depositing, to February 25, the day of the death of St. Walburga? And
why does it remain dry at every other time, even at the most humid
temperature of the air possible, and in the wettest years, for instance,
1866? Besides, what other stone, and be it in the deepest cave, will
sweat during four or five months a quantity of liquor from six to ten
Mass (a Mass = 1·07 French Litres)? If these naturalists are asked all
this, then they, too, are at the end of their wits.

"To this point I add two facts which may be proved beyond any doubt; the
one by unquestionable historical records, the other by still living
eye-witnesses. When under Bishop Friedrich von Parsberg the interdict
was inflicted on the city of Eichstädt, during all the year 1239 not a
single drop of liquor became visible on the coffin-plate of St.
Walburga. The contrary fact was stated on June 7, 1835. The cave was
opened on this day by chance, passengers longing to see it. To their
astonishment they found the stone so profusely dropping with oil, that
the golden vase fixed underneath was full to the brim, whereas at this
season never had been observed there any fluid. Some weeks later arrived
the long-wished-for royal decree which sanctioned the reopening of the
convent of St. Walburga; it was signed on that very 7th of June, 1835,
by his Majesty King Louis I.

"Moreover, let one try to gather water which is dropping from sweating
stone, or glass, or metal, and let him see if it will be pure and
limpid, or rather muddy, filthy, and cloudy. The oil of St. Walburga on
the contrary, is and remains so limpid and crystal, that a bottle, which
had been filled and officially sealed at the reopening of the cave after
the Swedish invasion, 1645, preserves to this day the oil so very clear
and clean as if it had been filled yesterday; an occurrence never to be
observed even on the purest spring-water, according to the testimony of
the royal circuit-physician (K. Bezirksarzt).

"To this testimony of a naturalist may be added that of a much higher
authority. The renowned naturalist, Von Oken, surely an unquestionable
expert, came one day, while he was Professor in the University of
Munich, to Eichstädt on the special purpose to investigate this
extraordinary phenomenon. The cave was opened to him, he received every
information he wished for, and having seen and examined everything, he
pronounced publicly without any reluctance that he could not explain the
matter in a natural way. He took of the liquor to Munich in order to
subject it to a chemical analysis, and declared then by writing the
result of his researches to be that he could take it neither for natural
water, nor oil, and that, in general, he was not able to explain the
phenomenon as being in accordance with the laws of nature.

"Let me add the testimony of a historical authority. Mr. Sax, counsellor
of the government (K. Regierungsrath), in his history of the diocese and
city of Eichstädt, after he has spoken of the origin, the properties,
and the effect of the oil of St. Walburga, concludes that 'they are of
such a singular kind, that they not only exceed far the province of
extraordinary nature-phenomena, but that they, in spite of the constant
discrediting and slandering by bullying free-thinkers, preserved the
great confidence of the catholic people even in far distant countries.'

"Now of the miracles. There are related by the people many thousands,
but, of course, few of them are attested. In the Pastoral paper of
Eichstädt, 1857, page 207, I read that Anton Ernest, Bishop of Brünn, in
Moravia, announces, under Nov. 1, 1857, to the Bishop of Eichstädt, the
recovery of a girl in the establishment of the sisters of charity from
blindness, and sends, in order to attest the fact, the following
document, which I am to translate literally:--

"'In the name of the indivisible Trinity. We, Anton Ernest, by God's and
the Holy See's grace, Bishop of Brünn. After we had received, first by
the curate of the establishment of the Daughters of Christian Charity in
this place, and then also from other quarters, the notice that a girl in
the aforesaid establishment had regained the use of her eyes
miraculously in the very moment when she had a vial, containing oil of
St. Walburga, offered to her, brought to her mouth and kissed, we
thought it to be our duty to research scrupulously into the fact, and to
put it beyond all doubt in the way of a special commission, by hearing
of witnesses and a trial at the place of the fact, if there be truth,
and how much of it, in the supposed miraculous healing.

"'About the report of this commission and the adjoined testimony of the
physician, we have then, as prescribes the Holy Council of Trent (Sess.
25), collected the judgments of our theologians and other pious men; and
as these all were quite in accordance, and the fact itself with all its
circumstances lay before us quite clear and open, we have, after
invocation of assistance of the Holy Ghost, pronounced, judged, and
decided as follows:--

"'The instantaneous removal of the most pertinacious eyelid-cramp
(Augenlied krampf), which Matilda Makara during many months had hindered
in the use of her eyes and kept in blindness, and the simultaneous
recurrence of the full eye-sight, phlogistic appearances still remaining
in the eyes, which occurred when Matilda Makara on Nov. 7, 1856, had a
vial with the oil of St. Walburga brought, full of confidence, to her
mouth and kissed, must be acknowledged to be a fact which, besides the
order of nature, has been effected by God's grace, and is therefore a

"'And that the memory of this Divine favour may be preserved, that to
God eternal thanks may be given, the confidence of the faithful may be
incited and nourished, this devotion to the great wonder-worker St.
Walburga may be promoted, we order that this aforegoing decision shall
be affixed in the chapel of the Daughters of Christian Charity in this
place, that it shall be preserved for all times to come, and that the
7th Nov. shall be celebrated as a holiday every year in this aforesaid

"'Given in our Episcopal Residence at Brünn,

"'Nov. 1, 1857,

"'(L. S.) Anton Ernest, Bishop.'

"A second record about St. Walburga I find in the Eichstädt Pastoral
paper, 1858, page 192, from which I take the following: 'The Superioress
of the Convent of St. Walburga had received in summer 1858 the notice of
a miraculous cure written by the Superioress of the Convent of St.
Leonard-sur-Mer, Sussex. At request for an authenticated report, John
Bamber, chaplain of the Convent of the Holy Infant at St.
Leonard-sur-Mer, wrote about the following: "Sister Walburga had been
ill fifteen months, of which five bedridden. The physician pronounced
the malady to be incurable. Large exterior tumour, frequent (thrice or
four times a day) vomitings were caused by the diseased pylorus. The
matter was hopeless, when the Superioress on April 27 thought of using
the oil of St. Walburga. The chaplain brought it on the tongue of the
sick sister, and in the same moment she had a burning feeling which
seemed to her to descend, and to affect especially the sick part. In a
few minutes the inner smart ceased, the tumour fell off, she felt
recovered. Next morning she rose, assisted at the holy mass,
communicated, ate with good appetite. She was quite recovered, but
somewhat feeble, as people always are after a great disease. The
physician, a Protestant, abode by his opinion the malady to be
incurable, acknowledged, however, the healing. His words were: 'I
believe the healing to be effected by the oil of St. Walburga, but how,
I don't know.' As a Protestant he refused to give testimony that the
operation of the oil had been miraculous.'

"The report is authenticated by Thomas, Bishop of Southwark.

"Freising, Bayern,

"September 13, 1873."



When I made the above reference in 1865 to Boniface of Canterbury, I was
sure I had seen among my books some recent authoritative declaration on
the subject of his _cultus_ in opposition to the Bollandists; but I did
not know where to look for it. I have now found in our Library (Concess.
Offic. t. 2) what was in my mind. It consists of five documents
proceeding from the Sacred Congregation of Rites, with the following

    "Emo ac Revmo Domino Card. Lambruschini Relatore, Taurinen.
    Approbationis cultûs ab immemorabili tempore præstiti B.
    Bonifacio à Subaudiâ Archiepiscopi Cantuarien. Instante
    serenissimo Rege Sardiniæ Carolo Alberto. Romæ, 1838."

Also Dr. Grant, Bishop of Southwark, has kindly supplied me with the
following extract from the Correspondance de Rome, 24 November, 1851,
adding "St. Boniface of Canterbury or of Savoy was beatified
_æquipollenter_ by Gregory XVI.:"--

    "Le B. Boniface de Savoie, xi de ce nome, petit-fils d'Humbert
    iii, Archevêque de Cantorbéry. Confirmation de son culte,
    également à la demande du Roi Charles Albert, 7 Sept. 1838.
    D'abord moine parmi les Chartreux, puis Archevêque de
    Cantorbéry, consacré par Innocent IV. au Concile Général de
    Lyons; il occupa le siége 25 ans. Mort en 1270 pendant un voyage
    en Savoie. Son corps porté à Haucatacombe; concours des
    populations; miracles; son corps retrouvé intact trois siècles
    après sa mort. Son nom dans les livres liturgiques. Sa fête
    célébrée sans aucune interruption. Sur la relation de Card.
    Lambruschini, la S. C. des Rites le 1 Sept. 1838, décida qu'il
    constait de cas exceptionnel aux décrets d'Urbain VIII. p. 410."

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