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homine, sed sub Deo et Lege. "The King should not be under man, but under God and the Law.""
And at another time, when James wished all Judges to suspend the hearing of a case, whenever he might choose to interpose, and, quitting the bench, come to His Majesty for instructions, thus losing sight altogether of the law, Coke gave an answer which abashed them all, and put even the King to silence. The Judges, with the Chief Justice at their head, had been summoned to resolve this question :- In a case where the King believes his prerogative or interest concerned, and requires the Judges to attend him for their advice, ought they not to stay proceedings till His Majesty has consulted them? All the Judges except Coke cried, “Yes! yes!! yes !!!” Coke calmly said, “WHEN THE CASE HAPPENS, I SHALL DO THAT WHICH SHALL BE FIT POR A JUDGE TO DO." This was indeed sublime.
“ The Court (of High Commission) having proceeded hitherto only by citation, a new attempt was made to send a pursuivant at once into the house of any person complained against, to arrest him, and to imprison him. This matter being discussed in the Court of Common Pleas, Lord Chief Justice Coke, supported by his brethren, determined that the High Commission had no such power; that the practice was contrary to MAGNA CHARTA; and that if the pursuivant should be killed in the attempt, the party resisting bim would not be guilty of murder. The authority of the Court of Common Pleas to check the usurpations of the High Commission by granting prohibitions, was contested; but Coke successfully supported it, and, in various instances, fearlessly stopped proceedings before this tribunal, which the King was known to favour.”
The last causes which he conducted as Attorney-General were those of the conspirators in the “gunpowder-plot,” where he displayed so much stern justice, that the Romish historians and their copyists never will forgive him. But in those cases, if he was a partisan, his party was justice, religion, and his country. He did nothing to please the Court; and it is observable that, immediately after the condemnation of those conspirators, James, who exceedingly disliked him, promoted
him to be Chief Justice, a post of higher dignity, but not nearly so lucrative, in order to bring him into the Privy Council, and thereby appealing to his pride, subdue his firmness, and by keeping him under the direct influence of King and courtiers, make him “ “obsequious.” But this promotion produced just the contrary effect. At length he was commanded by the King to withdraw from Court, and to cease from the discharge of his judicial functions. He was even thrown into the Tower, and only released to be confined to his own country-house. But nothing could sully his reputation for integrity and loyalty. Never was there a sounder Protestant. In the reign of Charles I. he was made Sheriff of Buckinghamshire, in order to keep him from taking a seat in Parliament for Buckingham. He submitted, and the exChief Justice, in capacity of Sheriff, stood behind the Judge, when he came on the circuit, submissively bearing his white wand. But, on entering that office, he refused to repeat a clause in the oath to seek and suppress all errors and heresies, commonly called Lollaries." Lollard, he said, meant Protestant, and therefore that was an oath he would never take. The Judges consequently agreed that it should not any longer be required.
The Petition of Right, which has been called the second Magna Charta, and contains the principles of the British Constitution, as it was settled in 1688, was drawn up and carried through Parliament by him. His great work on the Common Law of England, cited as "Coke upon Littleton,” is acknowledged to be an enduring bulwark of our liberties, and a thesaurus of legal and historical learning
His last days were his best. Trouble, experience, and religion had subdued much that was unlovely in him. He long refused medical aid, saying that he had never given his body to physic, his heart to cruelty, nor his hand to corruption. On the 3d day of September, 1634, at the age of eightythree, he pronounced his last words : “Thy kingdom come, Thy will be done.”
It is very unsafe to speak of the religious movement now going forward in Italy, inasmuch as we should expose those faithful disciples of Christ to new and more violent persecutions. We shall therefore write in such a manner as not to commit any one.
As for Piedmont, however, there is nothing to fear; and we may speak freely of all that we have seen in relation to the work of God in that happy country. After Belgium, Piedmont is the only place on the continent of Europe where full liberty of conscience and worship is enjoyed. Piedmont, as every one knows, is now a constitutional kingdom ; it contains four millions and a half of inhabitants, and is divided into five parts,—the dukedom of Piedmont, that of Savoy, that of Genoa, the county of Nice, and the island of Sardinia.
In the dukedom of Piedmont, on the skirts of the Cottian Alps, are the Waldenses ; those Christians who, in spite of so many violent persecutions, have never bowed their neck to the imperious Church of Rome. It is now five years since our dear brethren were elevated to an equal rank with human beings by their late magnanimous and generous King, Charles Albert. The Waldenses number about twenty-three thousand souls; and, now that the mighty hand of God has brought them out of the land of Egypt, and from the house of bondage, they, like the people of Israel, will become a numerous nation, and the light of the Gospel, pent up for ages in their humble valleys, will be dispread over all Italy.
The Waldenses now possess several churches, a considerable number of schools, a fine college at La Torre, a hospital, and some Missionary stations in Italy, and among the Italians out of Italy. In a short time we shall see an establishment opened for the refuge of those Italian Priests (provided they be sincere) who quit the Church of Rome, where they may receive necessary instruction, in order to be employed in the Lord's vineyard as Pastors, evangelists, colporteurs, &c. In
. Translated from that established and exceedingly interesting Italian periodical, L'Eco di Savonarola, published by Partridge and Oakey. It is from the pen, if we mistake not, of a former Professor of Theology in a Neapolitan University, who has lately joined the Waldensian Church.
Turin, capital of the kingdom, a handsome church is in course of erection, in one of the finest parts of the city. And here it should be observed that the idea of magnificence and elegance did not originate with the Waldenses, but that the Government imposed it on them, as an indispensable condition, that the church should be of such a description, or none at all. This sacred edifice will be opened with public solemnity as soon as possible; and may God grant that the glad tidings of salvation in the Lord Jesus be published therein faithfully. The Waldenses now enjoy another benefit,
- liberty of the press. They have published for some time past a monthly journal, under the title of “The Good News,” (La Buona Novella,) for a yearly subscription of about six shillings. We warmly recommend this Christian paper to those of our friends in England who are fond of the Italian language, and wish to keep themselves informed of what relates to the religious and political advance of the Waldensian Church. The Buona Novella, like the Eco di Savonarola, has had the high honour of being put into the Index of Prohibited Books, and consequently has excited the curiosity of very many Roman Catholics, who, attracted by its perusal, have become its most zealous supporters. The Waldensian Church has lately received into its bosom, not only many of the people, but also some personages of distinction, such as noblemen, ecclesiastics, literary and scientific men, and even two ex-Prelates from Romanism. With the exception of the extreme Republicans, every good patriot, every lover of what is good indeed, has now set his eye on the Waldenses, and relies on their doctrine, in great part, for the future hopes of Italy. We do not mean to say that the movement, in their case, is entirely religious. With many it is not a necessity of the soul, but a sure means for the attainment of a political end. They are now fully persuaded that Popery is the only obstacle to their attainment of the liberty, independence, and unity of the Peninsula. Hence they make every possible effort, in order to contribute, on one hand, to the fall of Romanism ; and, on the other, to the triumph of true Christianity, as it is professed by the Waldensian Church. The Lord, however, frequently brings good out of evil; and even the passions of men are sometimes, in His hand, instruments of justice and of mercy too. Let us pray, then, for the Waldensian Church, that it may continue to maintain intact the sacred deposit of the faith in the Lord Jesus, and that the favour of the world may not beguile it from its ancient simplicity.
Although the Waldenses are members of the great Italian family, they have hitherto made use of the French language. The reason of this was that when the Roman Inquisition had destroyed all their Barbes with fire and sword, not being permitted to possess a Theological College for the preparation of their teachers, they were obliged to obtain foreign Pastors from French Switzerland, and to send to Geneva young men intended for the sacred ministry.* Consequently, the Italian language gradually disappeared from the Valleys, and the French became their only dialect. Now, that Italy is to them no longer a cruel step-mother, but a loving mother, the Waldenses do all they can to restore the primitive language. Not being able to get rid of the French all at once, they preach alternately in French and Italian. Henceforth their Pastors and their schoolmasters will not be installed in their respective posts, unless they have first learnt to speak Italian well. In this they have great need of help; and in our opinion it would not be amiss to form a special committee in England for this object. Whenever there may be any willing to take up our proposal, we shall be glad to inform them of a plan we have ourselves conceived. The Gospel, then, is preached freely in Piedmont, and many souls pass from death to life, and from the power of Satan to the liberty of the sons of God. The holy Scriptures are no longer an unknown book, but the daily food of very many souls. Among the various things which the Waldenses have published for the first time in Italian, we may mention their own history, ably written by that worthy man, Amadeo Bert, Pastor of the Waldensian church in Turin. This history has been read with extreme avidity throughout all Italy, not excepting Rome, and has visibly diminished the prejudices against the
• An important fact, which is alone sufficient to account for their departure from the original Waldensian and primitive discipline.