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have ascribed this honor (if it be one) to Increase Mather. In the life of President Mather by his son, it is said: “It was his acquaintance with, and his proposal to, that good spirited man, and lover of all good men, Mr. Thomas Hollis, that introduced his benefactions into Harvard College; to which his incomparable bounty has anon flowed to such a degree, as to render him the greatest benefactor it ever had in the world.” p. 170. Also, in a vote of the corporation, passed in 1719, it is said expressly, that Increase Mather" was instrumental in procuring these donations.” Vol. I. p. 235. But President Quincy, who seems determined that no credit shall be given to the Mathers, of which they can possibly be divested, disputes this testimony, and represents the account given by Cotton Mather, in the life of his father, as “ wholly gratuitous, but in character with his self-glorifying spirit.” In other words, he charges Cotton Mather, or his father, or both of them, with wilful misrepresentation, and that too for the base purpose of glorifying themselves. And on what foundation does this so severe a charge rest? Absolutely none at all. It appears from the documents, that an uncle of Mr. Hollis had before bequeathed a legacy to Harvard College, and appointed him to be one of his trustees; and Hollis says: “I have had many thoughts of showing some liberality to the college, ever since the death of my honored uncle.” He does not say that he had purposed to do it, or had taken any measures towards it; but only that he had had thoughts of the thing. When President Mather was in England, on his agency for the province, Mr. Hollis met him, told him of his uncle's will, and mentioned the thoughts which he had himself entertained, in regard to the same subject. And what more natural, than that President Mather should encourage him in his good designs, press home the subject upon his attention, and do what he could to persuade him to adopt the college as one of the objects of his bounty? A supposition such as this, is not only natural and reasonable, but in the circumstances of the case almost necessary. Nor is it contradicted by aught that Mr. Hollis ever did, or by a word that he ever said or wrote on the subject. So far from this, it is the rather confirmed; for it was known, shortly after, that Mr. Hollis had remembered the college in his will ; and in a few years, he concluded to become his own executor, and sent over his first donation to the college. This he accompanied with a letter to his old friend and acquaintance,
crease Mather, formerly president of Harvard College, or to the gentleman who is now president thereof.” The income
of this first donation being designed for the assistance of some pious young man, Increase Mather requested that it might be given to his grandson, who was then a member of college. It was given to him (as the corporation express it) “at the desire of his grandfather, who was instrumental in procuring these donations.” Mr. Hollis was soon informed of the appropriation of his bounty, and of the reason of it. In reply, he expresses his surprise and sorrow, that Dr. Mather's grandson should need his bounty; but adds: “I have nothing to object ; am rather glad that he is first preferred.” And now what is there in all this, to contradict the account, which President Mather, in ail probability, gave of the matter, and which his son published to the world? And what is there on which to rest the charge, against one or the other, or both of these venerable men, of a base, and selfish, and wilful perversion of the truth? As I said before, nothing at all. The documents are perfectly consistent with the account of the Mathers. Indeed, they are more than consistent. They rather imply the correctness of this account, than contradict it.
The bounty of Hollis, after it had begun to flow, was like a perennial stream. As President Quincy remarks: “Scarcely a ship sailed from London, during the last ten years of his life, without bearing some evidence of his affection and liberality.” The particular objects of his bounty were, first, the library, to the enlargement of which he devoted much time and care, as well as money; secondly, “ the maintenance and education of pious young men for the ministry, who are poor in this world;" and thirdly, the endowment of professorships. He endowed a professorship of divinity, in 1721, and a professorship of mathematics, in 1726. He also sent over a philosophical apparatus, worth one hundred and fifty pounds sterling ; and founts of Greek and Hebrew types.
The HOLLIS PROFESSORSHIP OF DIVINITY.
The endowment which, from the first, has excited the deepest interest, and led to the most frequent discussion, was that of the professorship of divinity. President Quincy devotes almost an entire chapter to the consideration of this subject, and not a few of his statements require to be examined. One would think, from his representations, that Hollis had fallen into the hands of a class of rogues and jockeys, who were determined to get his
money, and yet defeat his liberal designs; and that they actually did" defeat the provision of his statutes, which rendered a Baptist eligible to his professorship, and substituted, in place of a belief in the Scriptures of the Old and New Testament, a declaration of faith in all the high points of New England Calvinism."* A simple narrative of the facts in the case will show how this matter is ;-after which, we may inquire as to the probable design of President Quincy, in laboring to discolor and distort these facts.
In the year 1720, Mr. Hollis learned, incidentally, from Dr. Colman, that there was no professor of divinity in Harvard College ; at which he expressed some surprise, and prayed to be informed immediately " what would be a meet stipend or salary for one.” Without waiting for an answer to this inquiry, he, early in the spring of 1721, prepared and sent over a paper, giving directions how the money that had been paid by him to Harvard College, or that might be paid in his lifetime, or by his executor, should be invested, and how the proceeds thereof should be expended.” A part of these proceeds was to be given for the support of a professor of divinity; a part for the assistance of poor and pious young men; and a small sum was to be given annually to the college treasurer, “for his pains in receiving and paying over my bounty."
President Quincy represents this paper as the proper foundation of the professorship of divinity, and as embodying all the rules and orders which Hollis contemplated with respect to it. But it seems that he did not so regard it; for in letters accompanying the paper itself, he requests “ further advice and information in that affair,” viz. “ the setting up a professorship of divinity at the college.” In compliance with this request, " a draft” or “scheme of a professorship” was prepared and transmitted to Mr. Hollis. In general, this “New England scheme” met with his cordial approbation ; though he thought that it needed some amendments. Accordingly, he delivered it over to several worthy ministers in and around London, desiring them to make such alterations and suggestions as to them appeared needful, intending afterwards to send it back to New England“ for more mature consideration" there. The“ scheme,” or orders," as amended in London, were at length returned to
* The“ stricter Calvinists" are represented (as usual) by President Quincy, as the authors of all this trickery and mischief. See
New England; were accepted by the corporation of the college; and (with some slight modifications) by the overseers. They thus were made satisfactory to all parties, and were finally sanctioned by Mr. Hollis, in January, 1723. Subsequent to this, Mr. Hollis claimed and received a written obligation from the corporation, binding them and their successors faithfully to fulfil the orders, as they had been written. In a letter to Dr. Colman at this time, Mr. Hollis says:
my orders signed and sealed with you, keep but honestly to them, and I shall be pleased ; not having any design at present to alter them, unless I see some very great reason for it.”
President Quincy will have it, after all, that Hollis was not pleased with his orders; they were not what he originally intended; they were rather forced upon him by his too officious New England friends, than cordially adopted, as a matter of his own choice. He was specially displeased with the eleventh and last article, which enjoins that the professor be “a man of solid learning in divinity, of sound and orthodox principles.” p. 248.
But how does President Quincy know what he has so confidently stated in relation to these matters? If he knows it at all, his knowledge must have been received by supernatural revelation; for certainly the documents contain no such intimations. The indications to be gathered from them are all in the opposite direction. The " New England scheme" or " draft” was transmitted to Hollis, in answer to his own request. Nor did he ever make any objection or complaint, that his friends had transcended his request, and sent over to him more than he desired. He thought the "scheme" needed some amendment, and he committed it to the hands of certain ministers for this
purpose; but how does President Quincy know-what he expressly states -that it was the eleventh article, which Hollis thought“ required amendment or modification ?" Does he anywhere say so? Do the ministers to whom he referred it, say so ? So far from this, they returned the eleventh article unaltered ; and Hollis returned it unaltered to New England ; thus unequivocally intimating that, in the judgment of all concerned on the other side of the water, this article required no modification. And when it was slightly amended, afterwards, in the board of overseers, so as to be of a more imperative character, still, Hollis made no objection to it, but sanctioned it as one of the orders of his professorship, to the end of time.
But it is said that, although Hollis consented to receive the eleventh article, he virtually and intentionally nullified it, by immediately subjoining, as a part of his statutes, “ that the only declaration required of his professor should be, that the Scriptures of the Old and New Testaments are the only perfect rule of faith and manners.” pp. 249, 256, 263. But how, I ask again, does President Quincy know what the intentions of Mr. Hollis were, in causing his professor to make the above declaration ? He talks and reasons about them with as much confidence and familiarity, as though he had been present at the time, with an omniscient eye, to look directly into the good man's heart. Mr. Hollis never intimated that he had any design or thought of nullifying or modifying, by the above declaration, the eleventh article of his orders ; nor is there any thing in the declaration itself, which renders such a design probable. Cannot a person be“ sound and orthodox,” and yet receive “ the Scriptures of the Old and New Testament, as the only perfect rule of faith and manners ?” Or I might more properly ask, Can a person be “ sound and orthodox,” in the common acceptation of these terms, and not receive the Scriptures in this way ?
But President Quincy is not correct in representing the declaration above quoted as constituting“ a substantive part” of the “rules and orders” of Hollis. The 6 rules and orders” are a paper by themselves, consisting of eleven articles, signed and sealed by the land of the founder. The declaration referred to is contained in another paper, entitled “ a plan or form for the professor of divinity to agree to, at his inauguration.”
Still farther from accuracy is President Quincy, in representing (as he does repeatedly) that a profession of belief in the Scriptures of the Old and New Testament is the only declaration to be required of the professor. So far from being the only declaration, it is but one among many others. At his inauguration, the professor must first “repeat his oaths to the civil government;" then, he must declare his belief in the Scriptures, as before stated; next, he“ promises to open and explain the Scriptures to his pupils with integrity and faithfulness, according to the best light that God shall give him.” He also“ promises to promote true piety and godliness by his example and instruction”; to “consult the good of the college and the peace of the churches, on all occasions ;” and “religiously to observe the statutes of his founder.” p. 538. These several declarations and engagements are all contained—not in the “rules and orders” of Hollis—but in his “plan or form SECOND SERIES, VOL. VII. NO. II.