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whole period with its 160 popes,1 we shall perhaps differ from him. We hold that all the good the Holy Roman Empire did, it did indirectly. In this way it fostered amongst the half-civilized nationalities order and law and faith. These it was divinely ordained should increase, while the empire, in accomplishing its mission, like the divine hermit, was ordained to decrease.All this we dutifully and thankfully acknowledge. All the empire's direct aims, with little exception, appear to us either worthless or wicked. The creature of selfishness and fraud, it maintained a feverish existence by the propagation of a falsehood as gross as one of Falstaff's: that it was the heir and representative of the Augustan empire. In any career of conquest and aggression, as that of Napoleon's, we gauge the work done, and the doer of it, on their own merits. But a theocratic institution, not as it fails, but as it is false to its own Nature, must be weighed in other scales, and all the more so because a theocratic institution in Christendom is that same kind of invasion of the rights of the Lord Christ which in the Church is perpetrated by the papal claim of supremacy. Indeed it might be fairly contended that those 'services which we admit the Lower Empire indirectly rendered to Europe, came not from the empire at all, but directly from the refining and softening influences of the Church: and, confirmatory of this, attention might be drawn to the happier history of those kingdoms which were virtually, if not actually, free from imperial influence. The anointed agent of Church and world, the empire, failed in the only two great trials which it was called to face. It neither saved the Church from the Lutheran schism, nor Constantinople from the Turk. Fraud is always fraud, and falsehood falsehood; and it is trifling with the sacred reality of words, and the more responsible conclusions of a sound judgment, to determine differently on these subjects because they happen to come before us in history.
And in proportion as we bring ourselves to adopt the true, if severe, criterion as regards the empire, shall we form a truer estimate of the position of the papacy in the middle age. It was the pope who gave realization to the dreams of Charlemagne. He assisted to create the Lower Empire. Whatever indirect services the empire rendered to society, were rendered during the time the pope acknowledged the supremacy of the crown. And so much the less is society indebted to the popes of the middle age. No sooner was the instrument proved to be useful than all the efforts of the popes were directed to undermine and
1 There is a useful Chronological Table prefixed, which gives the names of the popes, 255 in all, not reckoning the anti-popes, about thirty in number. The last is defective in the records of the anti-popes.
destroy it; to sap the foundations of all loyalty; to bring in question, ay, and more than bring in question, the inviolability of oaths; to shake-by a frantic diplomacy, which made war a holy institution, and carnage in another sense than the poet recked of the Daughter of God-the very hopes of humanity. The Church herself indeed seems to have been penetrated with a sense of her own utter degradation; and she who, of her previous ninety-eight pontiffs-who ruled from S. Peter included for eight hundred years-had canonized more than one half, has ventured to canonize during her theocratical millennium only five, out of a number reckoning nearly one hundred and sixty.
And now, even while we are writing, the heirs of Luther are raking together the spoils of the annihilated empire, and Italy and Rome are demanding to be restored to themselves; and care upon care is weighing down the heart of the aged pontiff, suspicious of his subjects whom his priesthood have never succeeded either in ruling or in converting, and depending upon carnal aid with that immemorial reliance which prompted Leo to call Charles from beyond the Alps. There is no Christian heart-we had almost said there is no human heart-that will refuse to pray for the suffering old man, the prince without a peer to befriend him: the father forsaken of all his own children. Yet be our suffrages rendered not only that he may be comforted and supported, but also that he may be enabled to rise to the full conception of the character of the Apostle whom he represents,-the fiefless and homeless pastor of the Church,-who claimed no crown, nor from one end of his diocese to the other, from Euphrates to the Tiber, owned earth enough in which to make his grave. May it be granted to Pius IX. to learn, however late, that the theocratical dreams which his office has inherited from the empire, and a love for which seems to constitute the last infirmity of his mind, are, and have ever been, the greatest curse of the Church of God.
Essays on Questions
ART. IV.-The Church and the World.
It seems to be pretty well understood among littérateurs now that a 'movement,' whether ecclesiastical or secular, theological or scientific, must receive an impetus from a bundle of essays in order to insure its progress. The original 'Oxford Essays' and Cambridge Essays' had no connexion except that which they derived from the binder: but the gentlemen who were bound up in that fagot of Neologian sticks called Essays and Reviews,' did the rough work of pioneers in a novel style of associated literary partnership. Alpine climbing has been stimulated in the same manner. The Irish Church,-that crux of Establishmentarians, has had its volume of Essayists. The Ultramontanists, under the presidency of Dr. Manning, cheered up their drooping spirits, and made a little figure by the like expedient. But all these efforts must give place to the present magnificent enterprise, for the bulk of matter, variety of subject, and number of contributors. This volume contains eighteen essays by as many different writers. The questions treated in its pages range over a wide field; and the list of contents looks like the commingling of papers_read at a Social Science meeting and a Church Congress. Infanticide and Clerical Celibacy; Architecture and the Conscience Clause; Hospital Nursing and Ritualism;-these headings give a fair notion of the scope of the book, and justify what we have remarked upon it. The Editor introduces his goodly company of essayists with a preface, in which he informs us that 'the several Authors are responsible only for the statements contained in their own 'contributions.' This is a stereotyped formula with which such volumes as the present are labelled. It corresponds to that sinister word limited' which Joint-stock Companies add to the titles of their schemes. We, for our part, confess that we are unable to appreciate the value of this saving clause. It did not protect the notorious Essayists' from being held, each and every of them, a particeps criminis, as regarded the general drift of the book; and why should it do more for our friends now lying before us? Any number of men clubbed together under one Editor to produce a book setting forth certain opinions, besides the part each plays as an individual, conjointly create an atmosphere which we may call the tone,
views, or tendency of the volume. This is inevitable; and this is something, over and above their separate responsibilities, for which all are responsible. In the second paragraph of his preface Mr. Shipley, though without appearing to be aware of it, repeats the first paragraph somewhat more elaborately. We can see no use in this anxiety to disclaim the natural consequences of association.
But let us to the book itself. The eighteen essays which compose it exhibit no arrangement as they stand; at the same time they are capable of being grouped to a certain extent. Nos. 1, 5, 7, and 14 may form one group; and perhaps No. 4, .on Cathedral Reform, may be thrown in as an appendix to this set. Nos. 2, 17, and 18 fall together very naturally. So also do Nos. 10, 11, and 16. The remaining seven articles are isolated as regards their subject-matter, and claim no fellowship by which they may be linked on to any of the others. We will glance at these last first, and then deal with the groups as groups.
The third essay, entitled, Infanticide: its Cure and Cause,' is a short, but, as far as it goes, an able treatment of a sad and very urgent question, which presses hard upon the conscience of the English public (if it have a conscience) at the present day; which is confessedly a blot upon our boasted civilization; and which puts our Christianity to the blush, and makes it hang its head and keep silence before the reproaches of its too exultant enemies. The subject is, indeed, most complicated. Difficulties beset it on all sides, and these difficulties spring from the most opposite sources. A false sentiment screens the mother who murders her illegitimate child from the extreme penalty to which she is in strict law amenable; while a one-sided virtuousness visits with the severest infliction of social degradation the woman who has fallen from honour, at the same time that it leaves the man uncensured. Again, popular modesty in England shrinks from facing, what is absurdly called, the 'social evil' as a disease. It does not attempt to treat it, because, it fears lest, by the unavoidable recognition which treatment involves, it should seem to tolerate it. The idea of localising the vice is shocking, because it is giving permission to that which is not permissible. And this is, under one aspect of the case, just sentiment. No system of public morality can be countenanced by a Christian, which gives a place to immorality as a necessary element in the social scheme. English feeling revolts at the thought of prostitution being legalized by the civil authorities. It has to the Christian mind one remedy-extirpation. Whether, however, police regulations are not called upon to keep within bounds what they cannot prevent, is a question of larger incidence, and
while public duties must proceed on lower motives, the greater evil remains that there is absolutely no check on vice, either by religious prohibition or social regulation. And yet, as a matter of fact, there is no city in Europe where this kind of vice is so much on the surface as in London. Nowhere does temptation so dog the steps of youth as in its streets. Another difficulty in dealing with sins of unchastity is, that when they take a criminal form, and have to be dealt with legally, the structure of the tribunals is not such as to insure a high and delicate principle according to which the claims of morality on the one hand, and mercy on the other, shall be truly adjusted. And this is their misfortune rather than their fault. It is inherent in the nature of the cases they have to deal with. Infanticide and concealment of birth are brought before the same tribunals as theft, murder, forgery, assault, libel, and uttering false coin. They are regarded by the law all alike as crimes. They are offences against the commonwealth, and endanger the safety of the citizen in person, character, or property. The law tries, condemns, and punishes them all from this point of view. But jurymen, who are the administrators of the law, are not so single-minded as the law. They do not keep to one point of view in regarding the crimes they deal with. When called upon to deliberate over crimes which take their rise from unchastity-such as infanticide and concealment of birth-they invariably moralize. Hence the uncertainty and inconsistency of their verdicts in such cases. A thief or a forger they will give a verdict upon as a mere criminal, and with an unbiassed consideration of the facts submitted to them. But when required to try a woman on the charge of murdering her illegitimate child they are often carried away by their feelings against their judgments. They, quite unconsciously, perhaps, turn their thoughts upon the non-criminal sin of unchastity which has led to the criminal sin of murder. We speak thus advisedly. Unchastity is a sin which the law does not recognise as a crime; therefore we call it non-criminal: but murder is a sin which the law does recognise as a crime; therefore we call it criminal. Now juries, as agents of the law, ought to look to the crime, and pay no attention to the sin. But sin and crime excite very different feelings in the minds of men. They condemn criminals, but pity sinners; and for this reason, that sin is an offence against Divine law, which they do not administer, but crime is an offence against human law, which they do administer. If juries could be empanelled who would regard infanticide simply as a crime, and close their eyes to the prevenient sin of unchastity, then verdicts of wilful murder would be found without recommendations to mercy; and verdicts of