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society will follow it, from the pin- Church : For what part of this propacle to the foundation.
vision can be left to the wandering By this faction has the Bill been impulses of the multitude; to the received with shouts of exultation profligate, who deny all religion; to and revenge, as if over the corpse of the penurious, who refuse all contrian enemy. It has been instantly hailed bution; to the thoughtless, who by the whole body of traitors to your shrink from all memory of the graver Majesty and the State. It forms the duties of life; or to the Jacobin, who, triumphant theme of those Political on system, rejoices in the general Unions which are already the tyrants blackening of all its obligations ? of the multitude, and of more than Leave the support of religion to the the multitude. The Irish assassin, caprice of the crowd, and it is either reeking from the murder of his coun- perverted by furious fanaticism, or trymen, receives it as a boon; the lost by frigid neglect; it becomes the Irish Jacobin, insulting the British reflection of ignorant, presumptuous, Legislature, receives it as a boon; and erratic minds, or it is famished the grim Atheist in his closet, the out of the land. But place it under furious agitator in the streets, every the protection of the State; give it avowed hater of order, joins in the solidity of that public pledge to a common shout of victory. They its continuance; give the commuregard the measure as only a preli- nity the assurance, that their sons, minary, a promise of fiercer innova- destined for the service of the altar, tion, sure and soon to come; in their will not be cast loose on the precariown jargon, it is but a means to an ous charity of the people; that the end." Their “ All hail,” but the first doctrines which they honour as the welcome to a shape of blood and truth, will not be suddenly exchaniruin, a prediction of its consumma- ged for the ravings of fanaticism, or ted career in the highest places of the the sullen sophisms of infidelity, land.
and you will have a succession of The question of the uses of an educated men, prepared by their Established Church is perfectly knowledge, by their principles, and clear. When the nation already has by the example of their predecesa Church, and has to choose a go- sors, for the religious teaching of the vernment, it naturally chooses a Go- people. You will have a great Instivernment friendly, to its opinions. tute, to which the pious look up with Where it has a Government, and has reverence for its sacredness, and the to choose a Church, that duty, like poor with gratitude for its benefacall the other leading duties, devolves iion, a noble rectifier of the wanderon the Government. The State ings of human opinion, by continual. chooses the Church fittest for the ly presenting to man a standard of support of society, which is the first the highest of all truth; and a noble purpose of all Government. And that safeguard of all Government, by conChurch it sustains by its bounty, by secrating the state, spirit, and body its patronage, and by its power. If to Heaven. the nation have not already possess- With an Established Church, Eng. ed a religion, the most necessary act land has risen from a feeble and disof Government is to give it one; for tracted country into the full vigour without a religion no Government of empire; has passed from darkness can be secure. Fear may produce a into light; has made the most maguitemporary submission. But the only ficent accumulations of wealth, Eusolid foundation of obedience to ropean influence, commanding liteKings is homage to the Deity. This rature, unalloyed liberty, and pure homage the State must take upon it- religion. In polity, she has risen self, for it cannot be left to the way- from a field of civil blood into the wardness of the human heart. The solid security of a legitimate and baforms of this homage must be pre- lanced government. In learning, scribed, the support of these forms from a rude borrower of the ele. must be provided for, a class of fit- ments of knowledge from foreigners, ting Ministers must be appointed for into the foremost possessor of all the service of the altar, and the in- that bears the name of intellectual struction of the people. In other distinction; and, in religion, she has words, there must be an Established torn the sullen robe of Rome from her limbs, and stands forth the cham- to the secular purposes of individuals pion of Christianity to the world. or the State, without bringing down
America is governed without an the heavy curse of God. This I shall Established Church. But are we to prove as I proceed. compare the ancient and massive The question is disengaged from fabric of the British government with all difficulty by the open nature of its the fluctuating and fugitive shelter provisions. There might be some under which American legislation speciousness in the proposal of thrust its head ? or the prescriptive changes of form in the Church, of majesty of our national worship with more or fewer dignities, or of the the rambling sectarianism of religion equalization of incomes.
On all in a country where the pulpit is only these points a wise legislator, aware the more foul and furious conduit of the hazards of all changes in anof every absurdity of the brain, or cient things, would feel himself paroxysm of the passions; the land bound to pause before he fairly of camp-meetings and convulsion. planted his foot on the perilous naires, of corruption under the name ground of public innovation. But of conversion, and of political raving the fondest enthusiast for the golden under the name of Scriptural illumi- age of change cannot be deceived nation? We might as well compare now. If he tread, it is at his peril. the forest wigwam with the palace, The pitfalllies open before him. Those or its tenant with the sages and two clauses are sufficient to lay bare statesmen of Europe.
the whole transaction. They are a deBut what is the actual object of the clared seizure of property, which no faction? Is it the purification of the legislature can have a right to touch, Church? This they scorn to assert. except under those circumstances They have tho candour of the full of public extremity which subvert sense of power. They have found all rights alike. In the utter famine no such word in their Gallic code as of the State, men may eat the bread renovation. Their object, open and from the altar. In the final battle of declared, is to destroy the Church. the State, they may turn the ruins of They have a further object,--parti- the Church into a rampart for their ally withheld, but on which their bodies. But those hours of terrible determination is fully formed. The paroxysm are not more remote outcry against the Church is only the from the bealthful and peaceful excovering of their warfare against the istence of empire, than those fierce Constitution. They will use the rights of despair from the present ruins of the Establishment to fill up plunder of the old and legitimate the ditch, and having broken through institutions of the empire. the grand outwork, they will have On this point I demand, where is nothing more to do than'to sit down the public necessity ? Where is rubefore the citadel. Upon your Ma- inous defeat and the national bankjesty's decision may depend interests ruptcy, or even the failing harvest ? ibat will dispose of the empire. Where any one of those public cala
I shall not enter into the details of mities that might serve as a pretext the Bill. My business is with its spi- for public plunder? I see none.
I rit. It is a twofold seizure of Church look round the horizon, even to the property ;-the one a perpetual tax extremities of Europe--all is quiet. on the clergy, from five to fifteen per I hear your Majesty's speech procent; the other a perpetual aliena- nouncing that you are on friendly tion of the Bishops' lands ;-the terms with all nations. I see comformer, a burden galling the neck of merce as usual pushing its branches the clergy from year to year for ever; through all the channels of enterthe other a sweeping spoil, a seizuré prise in the world. I see England of property given for the exclusive covered daily with canals, railways, support of the Church, holding by a and all the fine inventions that imply title as sacred as that of your Majes. at once individual capital and public ty's crown, and much more ancient; spirit. The bounty of Heaven has -both confiscation, without the sha- given us the most exuberant harvest dow of a crime; property torn away within memory. And it is at this which was consecrated to God, and time, when the country is hourly totally incapable of being converted congratulated by men in authority on her increasing strength, that we nothing but prophecies that all men are called on to consummate an act disregard; and that their only diswhich could be justified by nothing tinction is to be more conspicuously but the worst sufferings of the worst spurned. times, which, even in those times, This faction, the representative of could be safely done, only with a the ignorance of Ireland, comes over solemn determination to restore the with it to confound the wisdom of sacred things the moment that the England; rouses Ireland to madness, necessity had passed by, and render to make the madness a charge against unto God the things that are God's. England; covers Ireland with civil I can
see nothing in the natural war, and then bids England turn her impulses of your Majesty's Minis- ear to the sound; points to the conters, to account for an act which flagration, lighted by its own hands, must revolt their feelings as gentle- in a country of superstition, barbamen, regretting the privations of gen- rism, and revolt; and then bids us tlemen like themselves. I can see see, in the reddening horizon, the nothing but the one fierce and bitter example of our“ own funeral pyre.” faction which has grown into fatal. Can it be a question, whether we power in the State; which, contempts are to resist or to yield ? Are we to ible in its individual members, has commit the criminal absurdity of been suffered to become formidable protecting our civil existence, by as a mass; and which now by a sys- joining in a conspiracy against all tem of perpetual scorn of the law, civil right; or attempting to save perpetual defiance of principle, and Protestantism in England, by throwperpetual appeal to all the bad pas- ing Irish Protestantism to be mangled sions, carries the rabble with them, and trampled in their advance to naand floods the land with revolution. tional ruin ?
This faction began with Ireland. Your Majesty is not ignorant that There they found the soil prepared this faction hates you,—hates your by a giddy Government, and a profli- name,-your principles,—and your gate superstition ; they sowed the house ;-is stung with the most fuseeds of bloodshed, and left them to rious malice at your Sovereignty ;the natural care of those sure influ- hates you and yours as a Protestant,
The crop has duly followed; as a Brunswick, as a man, and as a and Ireland, at this hour, presents a King. That it has sworn on its alscene of misgovernment and misery, tars never to rest, until it rooted the unequalled in the globe. The san- last branch of the House of Hanover guinary despotism of Turkey has no- out of the Empire; and that, for this thing like it; the barbarism of Russia purpose, it is resolved to compass is civilized to it. The roving Arabs heaven and earth. That it will swear exhibit a more reverent respect for to all parties, or betray all; lick the life and property. The dweller in feet of all Ministers, or menace them; an Indian forest, or a Tartar wilder- lean down to the follies of all ganess, is safer in his house, than the therings of the rabble, or stir their Irish landlord, living under the safe- passions into frenzy; if it can but guard of the British laws;
carry its point-and that point the fortified within a circle of British downfall of the Protestantism of bayonets. That faction has been im- England ;-and as its preliminary, ported among us. The pilots who the expulsion of the Protestant line steered that vessel of ill-omen, are from the English throne. That it now loudest in their remorse, for a will be totally indifferent whether service, at once the basest, the most this be accomplished by force or disastrous, and the most marked by fraud; and whether its results be to retributive justice on their own send your dynasty across the Chanheads, of any act within record. nel, or through the grave. They now resist, and point to the At this moment it is exulting in the coming ruin. But they have strip- snare which it had laid for entrapped themselves of the alliance of all ping your Majesty's Ministers into honest men, and they declaim to the acts, which, if suffered to succeed, winds. The Cassandras, who part it boasts, must strip authority inwith their virtue for their knowledge, stantly of its whole strength in Irewill find that they have purchased land, startle every Protestant in Eng.
land, make loyal men examine the of them between the Crown and the grounds of their attachment to the nobles. The Church which he had Throne, make religious men shrink overthrown was impure. He had from a cause which seems volun- done a great act of national good in tarily to abandon the path of all that its overthrow. But his rapine sullied they have hitherto honoured; and the whole merit of his reform.even, in the most worldly point of Cranmer, and the leading clergy of view, must unsettle every feeling the Protestants, supplicated to leave that belongs to reliance on ancient for the works of God what had been right, acknowledged property, blame- consecrated to God. It had been less conduct, and legitimate possess given originally by holy men for sion.
holy purposes. Its abuse by monks The question narrows itself to the and Romish priests, could not justify single point of plunder. The Church its alienation from the works of may be a fit subject of regulation, mercy, knowledge, and virtue. But like every thing else; but regulation the courtiers were craving, the miis for improvement; robbery is for nisters were worthless, and the King weakness, confusion, extinction. This was rapacious. Passion and prodiis beyond the power of law, for no gality rioted in the spoil; and the law can authorize injustice, as no noblest of all opportunities was scheme of improvement can succeed thrown away,—the opportunity of by ruin. The rule is the simplest of spreading religious knowledge to all principles. Purify as we will, every corner of the realm. The of cut off excrescences, but do this only fence was soon and terribly avenged. to return the sap of the tree to the From 1543 to 1547, Henry had contrunk ;-do not lay the axe to the tinued his system of confiscation. root. A wise legislator, instead of Yet it was not total. He had given beginning his change by the rash ope- up a part of his plunder, from
time ration of extinguishing the Irish to time, for the uses of the purified Bench, would have considered what Church; he had even established six he could do for the increase of new Bishoprics; added Deaneries and Christian knowledge among the Chapters to eight already existing; people; he would have tried what endowed Professorships in both the was to be done by some more Universities; and erected Christ's fitting distribution. His last expe- Church and Trinity Colleges in Oxdient would be the destruction of ford and Cambridge. But he had any thing. He would have consi- alienated a vast portion; his nobles dered, whether, in a land, overrun had grown rich by the poverty of by her hideous crimes, and impuri- the Church. The same system was ties, and Popery, it was not a matter pursued under the Protector Soof Christian wisdom to strengthen merset, in the minority of Edward and multiply the outposts of Protest VI. Somerset himself seized on a antism; to fix as many able men, Deanery, with four Prebendal stalls. with means and authority in their In 1553, the punishment began. hands, as he could find; for the ex Nations must be punished in this press purpose of maintaining the re world, for they have
no future. The ligion of truth and loyalty, he would Reformation was suddenly stopped. discover, in the depth of that Pagan The whole career of vigour, personal darkness, a reason, not for extin- freedom, and public prosperity, to guishing his lamps, but for enlarging which every man in England looked and extending their illumination. forward, was covered with clouds.
The State has the power of re The fires of persecution, which seemforming the Church, but not of de- ed to have been extinguished for stroying. The rapacity which alien- ever, were suddenly lighted. The ates the property of the Church to old religion returned in ferocious the uses of the State, will be brought triumph ; every step that it trode, was to a bitter account for its crime. in the heart's-blood of England. Nine This is the testimony of history in thousand of the clergy were deprived all lands and all times. I shall of their benefices; eleven bishops look only to the annals of England: were degraded ; crowds of the most Henry VIII. seized the Church re- learned men of England were driven venues, and divided large portions into exile; and, by Lord Clarendon's
account, nearly eight hundred peo- at an end, for pluralities have grown ple, of all ranks and professions, suf- out of the want of habitation for the fered martyrdom. The Reformation clergy. The people would not have was thus vitiated by the crimes of its had to traverse miles across the founder, and the participation of his country to find a place of worship, people. Its career from that hour or not worship at all. They would was a struggle for fifty years. The have had a church at their doors. poverty of the Church deprived it of We should not have seen an Estathe power of being a public benefac- blishment, in which three-fourths of tor. Education languished. The the clergy are little above the pea, people, left by the scanty revenues sants round them, or four thousand of the Church to the chance liberality livings under a hundred pounds a. of the country, lost the knowledge year, with deductions for taxes and which the Church would have re- fees, diminishing even that pittance joiced to give, had it been enabled to by a fourth. We should not see a more than exist. Even the princely crowd of the orphans of those gena spirit of Elizabeth was forced to seek tlemen daily driven to find their in severity an expedient against the common education in public charievils that followed the confiscation ties, and scattered through the most of the Church Estates and the Esta- obscure and menial employments of blishment. Instead of being the great the most obscure trades, instead of support of the poor, the founder of emulating the attainments of the class hospitals, the munificent mother of in which they were born, and giving the whole system of national charity the contribution of their hereditary was stricken into pauperism. learning and piety to the nation.
The punishment was not yet com- The Puritans appealed to the poplete. "Out of the pauperism of the pular passions. The King, in his Church grew Puritanism. The Es- extremity, appealed to the Estatablished clergy, ground to the dust blished clergy. They were loyal, by the difficulties of life, were unable but they were now powerless. As to overthrow this new and violent Mary had been raised to scourge the incursion, alike on the Church and Reformation, Cromwell was raised the Government, and the new repub- to crush the throne. licanism of religion prevailed. If In all lands, the confiscator has the ancient revenues had been left, been punished. The scourge may England, three hundred years ago, have been laid on by different hands, would have been the most learned, but the blood has alike followed the intelligent, and powerful nation that blow. Fifty years ago, Joseph the Sethe earth bas seen. The Church cond of Austria confiscated the lands would have planted a college in every of some of the monasteries in the county, would have endowed foundAustrian Netherlands; the revenues ations for the support of learning were applied to the service of the in its earlier stages, and have made state. The monasteries may have provision for the continued support ' been useless, indolent, or even imof those learned men, who have been pure, but their wealth was not crifor the last three hundred years minal; and its first and last designadriven to perish in obscure heart. tion should have been to the service breaking labours for their daily of Heaven, by giving knowledge and bread. Germany at this hour owes teaching virtue. It went to clerks almost the entire of her literary dis- and secretaries, to squadrons of tinctions to those numerous little horse, and battalions of infantry. The annuities and provisions attached to crime was instantly smitten. Politiher courts and cathedrals for learn- cians, in their shortsightedness, can ed_men; provisions totally wanting see nothing but what lies on the in England, except in the Fellowships ground at their feet. To other men, of her Colleges, scanty and few as the Heaven is spread above their they are. The Establishment, unde- heads, and they see in its signs the spoiled, would have built a place of shapes of vengeance for the guilt of worship in every parish, with a resi- A furious insurrection arose dence which would ensure the pre- in the Netherlands ; not a monkish sence of a clergyman. All that is tumult for monkish injuries, but a evil in pluralities would have been Jacobin determination to abjure all