Page images

which the formulary in question is one of the principal instruments and supports. In further proof of the utter rottenness of this same system of its complete ripeness for dissolution—the following recapitulation, with here and there, for the sake of regularity and roundness, a word or two of addition,-may perhaps, in the eyes of a sincere lover of his country and mankind, appear not altogether ill-bestowed.

The system may be considered either in an absolute, or in a comparative point of view : i. e. by itself, without referring to any object other than the ends to which it is supposed to be directed,-or in comparison with other systems, that may be seen professing to be directed to the same ends.

In an absolute point of view it may be considered, 1. in respect of the ends or objects, to the attainment of which it professes to be directed. 2. In respect of its actual structure, by means of which it professes to direct itself to the attainment of those same objects or ends. 3. In respect of the effects actually produced by it, with reference to these same objects or ends. The objects, to the attainment of which it


seen, or, without injustice, presumed, to profess itself to be directed, may be comprehended under the following heads,-viz. 1. Advancement of Piety. 2. Advancement of Truth in Doctrine. 3. Melioration of the state of the intellectual part of the human frame. 4. Melioration of the moral part of the human frame, in the instance of the people taken at large. 5. Melioration, or at any rate preservation, of that same part in the particular instance of the Clergy. 6. Melioration of the state of education in all classes. 7. Increase or preservation of inward peace and comfort in the breasts on which it operates. 8. Pre

servation of the actual composition and disposition of the Government.

Service-Pay-Discipline.-Under these heads, for the purpose of the present brief review, will be comprised the

arrangements, by means of which it professes to aim at the accomplishment of these same objects.

As to the effects actually produced by the system, they will need no other nomenclature or arrangement than that which has already been given to the objects or ends above stated as professed to be aimed at. Of these effects a brief sketch has been drawn up, but, for the present, the limits prescribed by necessity to the present work forbid the insertion of it.

As to those other systems which, in comparison with, and for the illustration of, the system principally in question, will all along be held up to view, they are—1. The equally Established Church of Scotland. 2. In one body (for, in relation to the three above-mentioned heads, viz. service, pay, and discipline,—they will be found to stand on all material points all of them-on the same footing) in one body, accordingly, the several Non-Established Churches ; understand of course Protestant Churches : for as to the original, and Universal Mother Church-the Church of Rome--no scrutiny into the particulars of her internal structure affords, to the present purpose, any promise of practical use.

For the mass of mischief here brought to view, nothing, in the character of a remedy, could present itself as affording any tolerable promise, but dissolution. Cacothanasia, bad death,—or Euthanasia, good death (to borrow a word from David Hume) *-under one or other of these names will the end of the system, whenever it takes place, be found characterizable.

' By Hume, in one of his Essays, the death of the existing constitution

The object here being of course to recommend that which presents itself as the good or happy death, in preference to the bad and afflictive one, the following section may serve to give an idea of the characteristic circumstance, by which the two modes of dissolution may be distinguished.

The mode and body of instruction and guidance, by means of the existing Liturgy, with the addition of Sermons,-is it by Church-of-Englandists generally approved of?--Assuming that it is so, it will be shewn—that, for the administering of this instruction and guidance, a distinct order of men, under the name of Priests, -according to the principles at present established in regard to doctrine, being completely useless,-and, for the keeping of this order of men to their duty, another distinct rank of men, under the name of Bishops and Archbishops,of course equally useless,—thereupon, if both these classes of men were suffered to empty themselves by death without replenishment, the administering of instruction in this selfsame doctrine, throughout the kingdom, without any variation, and with at least as much effect as at present, might be secured, so long as the government lasts ;-secured, and that with a degree of plenitude and uniformity at present unknown,--and, so far as depends upon Sermons, with a degree of improvement altogether unquestionable, even by the most zealous Church-of-Englandists :-and that, thereupon, with increased security for the identity, and

being considered as not far distant, absolute monarchy is stated as the form likely to be worn by it at its resurrection, and it is in contemplation of this result that the supposed approaching death is characterized by the name of a happy one.

with increase, moreover, to the efficiency, of the body of instruction at present administered by the Clerical to the Lay portion of the Church, the whole of the Ecclesiastical income of England, with the exception of a portion altogether inconsiderable, might be applied in diminution of those intolerable burthens under which the nation sinks.

9.2.-Euthanasia—, in Contradistinction to Cacothanasia,

what ? -UTI POSSIDeris Principle--Its Application to

this case.


Before any thing further is said, either of the demand for, or of the mode and means of, reformation,-sound policy joins with humanity in paying homage to the saving grace of the uti possidetis principle.* In those international arrangements, by which war is terminated, uti possidetis-keep what each of you has got at presentforms but one out of a number of principles of pacification, among which the acting powers have to choose. In arrangements of internal national reform, in so far as concerns money and factitious dignityin a word, as to every object of desire,-power excepted, which in this case can never be considered any otherwise than as held in trust,—the principle of uti possidetis admits of no other to stand in competition with it.

The case supposed to call for the application of this principle is this.—The Church of England system is ripe

Uti possidetis—i. e. as you possess ;-understand as added, though not expressed--so, you shall continue-ajter the peace in question, you shall continue to possess :-uti possidetis, possidebitis.

See Beutham, par Dumont Legislat. civ. et penale ii. Ch. vii. p. 31. For the principle there laid down, the present appellative is bere ventured to be proposed.

for dissolution. The service provided by it is of a bad sort: inefficient with respect to the ends or objects professed to be aimed at by it: efficient with relation to divers effects, which, being pernicious, are too flagrantly so to be professed to be aimed at. Taken in the aggregate, the pay allotted for that service is excessive : the distribution of it being unequal in the extreme, it is,—while in the higher parts of the scale excessive to a degree altogether monstrous,-in the lowest, though in no instance perhaps deficient with reference to what would be necessary for the purchase of such inefficient service, yet enormously so with reference to what would be necessary for the purchase of good and efficient service from the class of hands proposed and supposed to be engaged. The discipline,-having for its professed object the securing, in consideration of the pay given and received, the rendering of the service professed to be rendered,-is, with reference to that end, eminently, not to say utterly, inefficient; but with reference to divers bad effects—and that to a vast extent-eminently efficient :-such are the propositions, proofs of which will here be brought to view: such are the grounds on which,-on the supposition that the service must be preserved, the dissolution of the whole remainder of the system is called for,-including whatsoever regards the topics of pay or discipline.

On the supposition that,--taken in the aggregate, or at any rate, in a number of instances covering in the whole a great extent, it contains a portion of excess,—what, in respect of this excess, shall be the lot of the actual occupants ?-Shall it be the same with that of the clerks, who, under the name of Supernumeraries, have, without compensation, been discharged from the service of the several Boards ?-or, without taking any thing from the individual comfort of any of the actual possessors, shall it be

« PreviousContinue »