Page images

those passages which are usually employed in support of the doccrines of predestination, election, perseverance, &c. Upon other portions of the New Testament the author casts much valuable light, and may be consulted to advantage.


5. The Works of Isaac Barrow, D. D.: to which are prefixed the Life

of the Author, by Abraham Hill; and a Memoir, by James HamilTon. With the Notes and References carefully revised ; and Indexes compiled expressly for this Edition. 3 vols., 8vo. New-York: John C. Riker. 1845.

Barrow's Works, by general consent, occupy a high grade among books of their kind. Of a school of divinity which distinguished an era in the English Church, they may be looked upon as the representatives of a large class of theological writings. The divinity of the times of the restoration and reign of Charles II. is noted for its low tone on evangelical subjects, and for greater attention to the outward parts of religion than to its inward spirit and life;-a defect to which, no doubt, Barrow's writings contributed. But apart from this, his works have many excellences. His casuistry and practical moral instructions are valuable, and richly compensate a careful perusal. His Treatise on the Pope's Supremacy exhausts its subject, and leaves little more to be said or even desired by the friends of religious liberty. The


of his argument is comprehensive, his style is nervous, and his reasoning conclusive ; to read them without receiving instruction would argue either a very wise or a very dull understanding,—to dwell upon their instructions without being made better would indicate either very high previous attainments, or else great perversity of heart.

We hail with pleasure this first American edition of a valuable standard work, as indicative of an increasing spirit of inquiry and research into that class of writings. Truth has nothing to dread from free and full investigation ; and we cordially commend these volumes to the curious in theological literature, though we would not indorse them as safe guides or correct standards of Christian doctrine in all cases. They afford, besides many intrinsic excellences, a striking view of the theology of the Church of England in one of its peculiar phases, the point of departure from the simplicity of the gospel, upon its most erratic divergence into the frozen regions of formality and skepticism. By observing here the small beginnings of error, we may be admonished of like danger, and stimulated to contend more earnestly for the purity of the gospel. Much praise is due to the publisher of this edition, and we hope that he will meet with a corresponding liberality or the part of the public. 'The dimensions into which this edition is


compressed, its mechanical execution, and especially its price, commend it to public favor. A more extended notice of these works may be expected hereafter.

6. Elements of Morality, including Polity. By William WHEWELI.,

D. D. Harper & Brothers. 1845.

The author of this work is widely known by his History of the Inductive Sciences, as a philosophical writer of extensive investigation, of clear-sighted discrimination, and of great ability. In this book he has set forth the essential principles of morality and of polity, in all departments of thought and action, legal, social, and ecclesiastical. Of course

we except to his views of the propriety of a connection between the church and the state.

The methodic arrangement of the work is one of its most marked features, and will greatly facilitate its use. It has been published in two very neat duodecimo volumes, and forms the opening number of a series of substantial works, to be published under the general title of Harper's “New Miscellany." The project deserves, and we doubt not will meet, a marked success.




7. The Life of Faith, in three Parts ; embracing some of the Scripiural

Principles, or Doctrine of Faith, the Power or Effects of Faith in the Regulation of Man's inward Nature, and the Relation of Faith to the Divine Guidance. By Thomas C. UPHAM. 12mo., pp. 480. Boston: Waite, Pierce & Co. 1845.

We did not receive this book sufficiently early to enjoy the privilege of its perusal before giving this notice. We anticipate much spiritual profit from the instructions which Professor Upham has imparted upon the great and important theme which constitutes the subject of his book. In the mean time we will allow the excellent author to speak for himself by inserting his short explanatory preface entire.

“ Christianity harmonizes with itself, and involves in its progress the same great principles which characterize its incipient state. The Christian, therefore, lives as he began to live. He began in faith. He lives, day by day, in the exercise of faith. And, by the grace of God, he is ultimately made victorious, and is brought into the possession of the divine image, through the same faith.

“I have endeavored, in the following pages, to illustrate this great truth. The present work, therefore, is, to some extent, kindred in its nature with the interior life. And it is proper to say here, that it has been found necessary, in order to its completeness, to transfer to it, in a few instances, the statements and principles which are there given. I have particular reference in this remark to portions of the third and



twelfth chapters in Part I, and of the ninth chapter in Part II. The leading object of both works is the promotion of practical holiness. I have no doubt, that the object will meet with favor ; but have less confidence, that the manner of executing it will be approved. But, however this may be, it is a satisfaction to know, that books, as well as other things, have their overruling Providence. And he who writes, as well as he who acts in other ways, can exercise a cheerful confidence in leaving what he has done with God, who can distinguish between the result and the intention, and can make even the weak and imperfect things of his people to praise him.”

8. The Philosophy of Mystery. By WALTER Cooper DENDY, Fellow

and Honorary Librarian of the Medical Society of London, &c. 12mo., pp. 142. New-York: Harper & Brothers. 1845.

A very curious book, this. The author attempts to give us the philosophy of spectral illusions, supposed visions, strange dreams, somniloquence, somnambulism, &c. He brings to bear upon these recondite topics a vast amount of physiological knowledge, and makes the discussion exceedingly entertaining, though we cannot say that he always perfectly convinces us of the truth of his theories. The facts which he states are worth knowing, though we may not find connected with them a satisfactory explanation. The discussions are conducted in the agreeable form of a dialogue, and the style is easy and flowing. In an age when miraculous things are so acceptable to the public taste, we doubt not but this book will find readers. Upon the whole, such a book is much better than the wonders which are made out of whole cloth by our writers of fiction.


9. The Roman Church and Modern Society. Translated from the French

of Prof. E. Quinet, of the College of France. Edited by C. EDWARDS LESTER. 12mo., pp. 198. New-York: Gates and Stedman. 1845. This book is made up of lectures delivered by the author upon

what he calls “ Ultramontanism,”—which is the designation given to Romanism proper in distinction from the Catholicism of France and Germany. The author attempts to show the deleterious influence of Romanism upon the literature and civil institutions of Europe. He proves that philosophy and history have been crushed in Italy by the iron despotism of Rome ; and that Italy has surrendered her nationality to the triple crown. His lecture on Galileo is peculiarly valuable. But there is in these learned and powerful lectures too much transcendental mistification for us. Moreover, the learned professor has too high a veneration for Voltaire, Rousseau, and others of the same school. Still, these lectures may be profitably read; we are glad to see them in an English dress.


10. The Jesuits, translated from the French of MM. MICHELET and

Quinet, Professors in the College of France. Edited by C. EDWARDS LESTER. 12mo., pp. 225. New-York: Gates & Stedman, 1845.

These are the lectures which the Jesuits undertook to stifle in the birth, by raising tumults at the time of their delivery. But this time the serpent bit a file. The popular feeling was too strong against this dangerous and factious class of Romanists. The professors were sustained, and their assailants put down. The lectures of Michelet are not remarkable for sound logic, but are admirably calculated for popular effect. Those of Quinet are regular and finished structures, full of such terrible facts as Romanists wish to conceal. The translator tells us that these lectures passed through seven editions in eight months, and that more than two hundred volumes have been published for and against them. This shows at least the importance put upon them both by the friends and enemies of the professors. Undoubtedly, the labors of these distinguished men have contributed much toward the fall of the Jesuits in France. It is said this amphibious, nondescript race are now leaving France; but where will they go? Perhaps some of them will favor us with their presence and handy-help in managing our affairs. We hope this may not be so, for we have ough of them here already. Still a class of politicians say, “Pshaw! Jesuits? where are they? There are none of them here.” So, many in Europe have continued to say, even while these insidious foes were undermining all the institutions of the country. Even Jesuits there often raised a hearty laugh, and exclaimed, “Nonsense! The Jesuits dangerous? They are things that were. Don't, gentlemen, attempt to frighten children with old wives' fables.'” Yes, we have Jesuits among us—and Jesuits are always the same. Their work is espionage, and their motto, “ Death to liberty-liberty of conscience and liberty of speech.” And this is none the less their work, though they shout, “ Hurra for liberty! Long live the republic of America !"

11. The Sufferings of Christ. By a Layman. 12mo., pp. 328. New

York: Harper & Brothers.

The doctrines of this book may be gathered from the opening of the author's Preface, which is as follows:

“ The prevalent theory of the redeeming sufferings affirms that God is impassible, and therefore limits the sufferings of Christ to his manhood alone. This theory has pervaded Christendom, and stood the test of centuries; yet have we been forced, by Scriptural proofs, to the conclusion that it is founded in error, and that the expiatory agonies of our Lord reached not only his humanity, but his very Godhead."

[ocr errors]

We have only been able to glance at a few pages of this singular production. The argument seems to have cost the author much thought, and he certainly prosecutes it with earnestness and vigor. We shall read the book when we have leisure, and should we think the interests of truth require a further notice of it, we shall again introduce it to our readers. Our a priori opinion of the work, we freely confess, is unfavorable. We stand in doubt of such speculations. The doctrine of atonement is clearly taught in the Scriptures, but as to the rationale, any further than it stands revealed in the Bible, it is scarcely a proper matter of speculation. Such speculations are generally attended by the disadvantage of enlarging unnecessarily the field of controversy with infidelity, and of at least seeming to create reasonable ground of objection to the cardinal doctrines of the gospel. We will not, however, prejudge the book before us. We will read it with care, and then discharge our conscience in relation to its contents.

12. Introductory Lectures on Modern History, delivered in Lent Term, 1842,

with the Inaugural Lecture, delivered in December, 1841. By Thos. ARNOLD, D. D., Regius Professor of Modern History in the University of Oxford, and Head Master of Rugby School. Edited from the second London edition, with a preface and notes. By HENRI REED, M. A., Professor of English Literature in the University of Pennsylvania. 12mo., pp. 428. D. Appleton & Co. 1845.

This book is not so much occupied with historical details as with the principles to be called into requisition in their perusal and study. It contains many sound criticisms upon the leading facts of modern nistory, and discusses the political opinions of the leading actors in the great measures of the British government during the last three hundred years. Dr. Arnold is a powerful and a candid writer, and delivers his opinions with great independence. But it would be too much to say that he is always free from national prejudices. This perhaps would be too much to expect from poor human nature, and certainly should not be looked for in a professor of history in an English University. We are specially pleased with the enlightened and philosophical view he takes of the traditionary history of the Church of England as found in “the venerable Bede.” He shows that this credulous and dreamy ecclesiastic has blundered sadly in his account of natural objects which remain unchanged, and certainly is not to be relied upon with implicit confidence when he records a multitude of miracles wrought upon trifling occasions and apparently without an object. For this and similar offenses the Puseyites will never pardon Dr. Arnold. These real Romish monks in disguise will endure no man who does not place the stupid legends of the dark ages upon


« PreviousContinue »