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at the Royal Institution, the like was never known : whilst of his sermon on “Man in God's Image,” it is hardly too much to affirm that nothing had appeared before it in English prose, at once so beautiful in conception and so exquisite in language. In its own age, unprecedented and still unsurpassed, amongst portraits of man's mind, as yet unfallen, that wonderful discourse stands out like an Apollo Belvidere-a glorious creation, radiating a beauty of its own on the subject from which itself has borrowed immortality.

Of tender or gracious feeling there is little trace in Dr South's lively and eloquent compositions; but we must concede to Mr Cattermole,* that there is much of what is usually understood by “unction” in the following close of his sermon on conscience : “At this disconsolate time, when the busy tempter shall be more than usually apt to vex and trouble him, and the pains of a dying body to hinder and discompose him, and the settlement of worldly affairs to disturb and confound him, and, in a word, all things conspire to make his sick-bed grievous and uneasy; nothing can then stand up against these ruins, and speak life in the midst of death, but a clear conscience. And the testimony of that shall make the comforts of heaven descend upon his weary head, like a refreshing dew or shower upon a parched ground. It shall give him some lively earnest and secret anticipations of his approaching joy. It shall bid his soul go out of the body undauntedly, and lift up its head with confidence before saints and angels. Surely the comfort which it conveys at this season is something bigger than the capacities of mortality-mighty and unspeakable, and not to be understood till it comes to be felt. And now, who would not quit all the pleasures and trash and trifles which are apt to captivate the heart of man, and pursue the greatest rigours of piety and austerities of a good life, to purchase to himself such a conscience as, at the hour of death, when all the friendships of

Literature of the Church of England, vol. ii., p. 470.



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the world shall bid him adieu, and the whole creation turn its back upon him, shall dismiss his soul and close his


with that blessed sentence, “Well done, thou good and faithful servant, enter thou into the joy of thy Lord !'”

But, although there is little pathos, there is no want of warmth and vigour, and there are few things with which we sympathise more heartily than honest indignation. As, for instance, after quoting from Bellarmine the extraordinary proposition, "That if the Pope should, through error or mistake, command vices and prohibit virtues, the Church would be bound in conscience to believe vice to be good and virtue evil,” he exclaims, “Good God! that anything that wears the name of a Christian, or but of a man, should venture to own such a villainous, impudent, and blasphemous assertion in the face of the world as this! What! must murder, adultery, theft, fraud, extortion, perjury, drunkenness, rebellion, and the like, pass for good and commendable actions, and fit to be practised ? and mercy, chastity, justice, truth, temperance, loyalty, and sincere dealing be accounted things utterly evil, immoral, and not to be followed by men, in case the Pope, who is generally a weak, and almost always a wicked man, should, by his mistake and infallible ignorance, command the former and forbid the latter? Did Christ himself ever assume such a power, as to alter the morality of actions, and to transform vice into virtue, and virtue into vice by His bare word? Certainly never did a grosser paradox, or a wickeder sentence drop from the mouth or pen of any mortal man, since reason or religion had any being in the world. And, I must confess, I have often with great amazement wondered how it could possibly come from a person of so great a reputation, both for learning and virtue too, as the world allows Bellarmine to have been. But, when men give themselves over to the defence of wicked interests and false propositions, it is just with God to smite the greatest abilities with the greatest infatuations.”

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Unfortunately, however, much of South's indignation is lavished on men whose memory is now dear to Englishmen, and whose depressed condition should have been a powerful appeal to the forbearance of a generous foe. To trample on the fallen, or to torture a victim whose hands are tied, is no great token of chivalry; and, in his invectives against republicans and puritans, South knew full well that they could not retaliate. Had the pulpit been open, or the press been free, they might have reminded their accuser of his former connexion with themselves; and whilst they might safely have asked him to point out the sacrifices by which he had evidenced his sincerity, they might have hinted, that of all enemies the most truculent and unforgiving is a turncoat or an ungrateful protegee. With language like the following, the walls of Whitehall and Westminster Abbey used to resound on days consecrated to the “Happy Restoration of King Charles the Second :"

1" “In the late times of confusion, how was the black decree of reprobation opened and let fly at them [loyalists both from pulpit and press, and how were all the vials of wrath in the Revelation poured upon their head! Every mother's son of them was a reprobate and a castaway, and none to hope for the least favour hereafter who had not Cromwell or Bradshaw for his friend here. Nor were these enthusiasts less liberal in denouncing God's curses upon their enemies, than in engrossing His blessings to themselves : there being none of those reverend harpies, who, by plunders and sequestrations, had scraped together three or four thousand a-year, but, presently, according to the sanctified dialect of the times, they dubbed themselves God's peculiar people and inheritance. So sure did those thriving regicides make of heaven, and so fully reckoned themselves in the high road thither, that they never so much as thought that some of their saintships were to take Tyburn in their way.” Again: “Whensoever you hear any of these sly, sanctified sycophants, with turned-up eye and shrug

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of shoulder, pleading conscience for or against anything or practice, you should forthwith ask them, What word of God they have to bottom that judgment of their conscience upon?

... And if they can produce no such thing (as they never can) then rest assured that they are arrant cheats and hypocrites, and that, for all their big words, the conscience of such men is so far from being able to give them any true 'confidence towards God' that it cannot so much as give them any true confidence towards a wise and good man; no, nor yet towards themselves, who are far from being either."

Racy and idiomatic as is our author's English, it is too often debased by slang. In the same way, his wit not rarely degenerates to ribaldry, and the temptation of a keen or humorous remark is always too powerful for his reverence. Thus: “With two or three popular, empty words, such as 'Popery and superstition,' right of the subject,' 'liberty of conscience,' 'Lord Jesus Christ,' well tuned and humoured, a skilful


of the rabble may whistle them backwards and forwards, upwards and downwards, till he is weary, and get up upon their backs when he is so." Again : “ The truth is, they (the Jews] were all along a cross, odd, untoward sort of people, and such as God seems to have chosen, and (as the prophets sometimes. phrase it) to have espoused to Himself, upon the very same account that Socrates espoused Xantippe, only for her extreme ill conditions above all that he could find or pick out of that sex; and so the fittest argument both to exercise and declare His admirable patience to the world.” And in the outset of his sermon on “ The Christian Pentecost” there is a hit at the Protector of a nature so profane that it is better to leave it where we found it.


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Of a very different type from Dr South was another of the royal chaplains of whom we must now give a few particulars.

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JOHN TILLOTSON was a native of Sowerby in Yorkshire, where he was born in 1630. His father, a clothier, was a man of superior understanding, eminent for his piety, mighty in the Scriptures, and a zealous Calvinist. John, being destined for the ministry, was sent to college in his seventeenth year, and was admitted a pensioner of Clare Hall, Cambridge, where he had for his tutor the Rev. David Clarkson. It can, therefore, occasion no surprise that the son of such a father, and the pupil of such a master, should have commenced his ministry a Presbyterian like themselves, and the first sermon which he published was one delivered at the famous morning exercise in Cripplegate, in conjunction with associates afterwards distinguished for their nonconformity.

At the same time, it is only candid to acknowledge that influences had been at work on his mind which prevented him from coming out the zealous partisan of any denomination. Amongst his earlier associates the tendency was towards exact definition and a rigid symbolic orthodoxy; and not only was it heresy to look over the wall which skirted the theologian's path, but it was dangerous to quit the iron rail along which it was ruled that Christian experience, if genuine, ought always to travel. But the perusal of Chillingworth's masterly treatise recalled the

young student to the only infallible standard, and taught him that, howsoever epitomised in the creed or confession, “the Bible alone is the religion of Protestants.” Coincident with this, he enjoyed the friendship or the instructions of men who brought to the service of Christianity rare treasures of learning and intellects of unusual elevation and power, as well as lives of unwonted winsomeness; and a mind so candid and eclectic as Tillotson's could hardly fail to be influenced by the scientific expansiveness of Wilkins, the metaphysical boldness of Cudworth, the majestic moral symmetry of Whichcote, the consecrated learning and charming philosophy of John Smith and Henry More, who, in the middle of the seventeenth

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