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obeisance to the throned giant. The other party-small, very small in number-were habited in the simplest attire; their ruler, one of female form, clad in a robe of the most spotless white, held in her right hand a mirror, in her left a torch; her demeanour, though dignified and commanding, was peculiarly graceful and captivating, while the smile of benevolence, of ineffable tenderness and compassion, that illumined the delicately-formed lineaments of her lovely face, imparted a charm no mere regularity of feature could produce. Those who owned her gentle sway seemed also to partake of her nature, and to consider her approbation a rich reward for any toils they might undergo. I observed in the hand of each a book, which appeared to contain a map of the country, with rules and directions for their use ; so that none, had they been so minded, could well plead ignorance in excuse for transgressing her laws. These two parties, though so diverse, were necessarily commingled, and rumour stated, that the larger party were constantly, openly or covertly, at war, with their peaceful and inoffensive brethren; they appeared, however, to entertain a great dread of the female sovereign, on account of the mirror which she bore, wherein, when they saw themselves reflected, the badge of servitude in which they seemed to glory showed itself to be composed of iron, instead of gold, their gaudy habiliments to be all tattered and soiled; while the torch, in bringing to light their inmost thoughts and intents, also disclosed many a foul stain they would gladly have concealed from view. Upon the giant the effect was no less astonishing, his every feature became distorted and convulsed; and as the rays of the one and the reflection of the other fell more directly upon him, I beheld him, first become an unsightly skeleton, then totter and fall from his seat, though immediately upon their withdrawal he revived, reascended his throne, and appeared as before. Such marvellous effects being produced by her presence, I ceased to wonder that as she approached the multitude fled from before her. At length, one arrayed in scarlet, watching his opportunity, threw a thick veil over the mirror ; while another, in a garment covered with hieroglyphics, his cap and vest glittering with spangles, with à most sinister expression of countenance, drew near to an engine I had not before remarked, in shape like a dragon, and working it, from its horrid jaws poured forth a stream of a thick dark liquid, in the hope of utterly extinguishing the torch ; but though not entirely successful, its brilliancy was for a time somewhat impaired, or in a measure obscured ; upon which he with the brazen trumpet sounded a blast of triumph. Near these persons stood one of most repelling aspect, clad in sables, who looked with ineffable scorn on all around, yet still even he could so far bend his haughty spirit as to do obeisance to the giant. After awhile, I beheld some of those I have described as so simply attired gaze with an eye of wonder at the apparently successful efforts to annihilate the mirror and the torch ; and while gaping with open mouth at the proceedings of the two personages with the scarlet mantle and spangled vest, they dropped the book, which till then they had held in their hand, though I particularly observed they had not so constantly referred to it as did their brethren: this the other party perceiving, immediately beckoned to them, and held out a golden cup
filled with an inebriating liquor, which they greedily swallowed; the. ascending fumes having first thrown them into a profound slumber, next caused a complete vertigo, they suddenly started to their feet whirling round in concentric circles, which, similar to the gyrations of a Dervise, commencing gradually, became accelerated to a frightful degree; such was the impetus thereby given, that it was no longer possible to discern either features or limbs, nothing but a dim indistinct outline of a pyramidal figure remained. The strength of the potion being at last somewhat spent, and exhausted nature unable to sustain such continued violent exertion, the rapidity of their motion subsided as gradually as it had commenced, leaving behind an astonishing exhilaration of spirits, with such a dimness of vision, that they could not distinguish men from trees, or mountains from molehills. With a reeling and uncertain step, they now moved towards some distant object, which they had long been regarding very intently; hearing loud hiccuping expressions of delight, methought I followed to learn the cause ; which, however, the thickness of the surrounding woods, and duskness of approaching night, rendered it difficult, nay impossible, for me to discover; but I gathered from their discourse, that it was the before-mentioned cabalistic scrolls, and heard them descant very learnedly upon the exquisite tracery and elaborate finish of the various designs. I drew nearer, straining my eyes in every direction, and while lamenting my inability to penetrate the increasing gloom, a bright flash from the so much dreaded torch fell directly upon these vaunted productions; and lo! they proved the merest daubs possible to conceive, coarse, ill-executed, and utterly devoid of meaning. Having for a time rapturously contemplated what their disordered vision represented to them, as so worthy of admiration, they next glanced at their own sober habiliments, and disgusted with their simplicity, flung them contemptuously aside; they then proceeded to array themselves similarly to their new friends, who willingly assisted them to clasp on the same fetters as they themselves
I cannot say I thought the change advantageous, or that their personal appearance was at all improved, by exchanging the snowwhite ample robe which fell in such graceful folds around them, concealing every natural defect, for the heterogeneous mixture of illassorted colours they had assumed in its stead; for certainly a more tasteless inharmonious combination my eye had never before encountered. I also perceived sundry rents, with divers ill-contrived ugly patches, which gave rather an ignoble appearance to the so much coveted garment. The reason was sufficiently obvious, this many coloured robe was so extremely narrow, that upon every attempt to draw it round them, it rent in every direction ; and as their imperfect sight caused them invariably to mistake one colour for another, in striving to repair these constantly recurring fractures, they imagined all was in admirable unison, when really their appearance was more that of a mountebank than otherwise. Attired thus to their infinite satisfaction, they instantly began reviling their former companions, nay, it appeared, strove to outdo their new associates, in lavishing upon them opprobrious epithets; and, drawing forth their weapons, seemed to dare the others to combat, though the latter had no other
weapon than the book of rules I had before observed: the challenge was nevertheless undauntedly and unhesitatingly accepted. I own I marvelled at such temerity, in a small and unarmed force, but how was I thunderstruck at beholding the book, upon being raised aloft, transformed into a two-edged sword! Terrific indeed was this most appalling weapon, glittering as though newly bathed in the dews of heaven, and emitting vivid flames, which broke forth in flashes of intolerable splendour. Vainly did the terror-stricken assailants endeavour, by a precipitate flight, to escape inevitable destruction, for the flaming sword turned every way, mowing down whole ranks of the discomfited hosts, who blinded by its effulgence sought for refuge amid the surrounding rocks and forests; but such was its almost incredible sharpness that, upon barely coming in contact with the largest and stoutest trees, nay even rocks of adamant, they were instantly cleft asunder! I next marked, hovering around, a tall, attenuated, shadowy form, with bleached and straggling locks, and deeply indented brow, armed with a scythe ; touching with it indiscriminately some of the assemblage, he held up to their view a glass of singular form, then expanding a pair of wings resembling those of a bat, but of an enormous size, he directed his flight towards the dark and stagnant river, motioning those thus summoned to follow him ; they were compelled to obey; he meanwhile hovering over the surface of the water, his aspect becoming still darker by its proximity, with a grim and ghastly smile, commanded them to cross it. I remarked, that those especially who had cast away their white robes and joined the larger party, upon entering it, immediately sunk to the bottom as a stone; others attempting to ferry themselves over, in an ample barge, with gold-tipped oars, struck against a rock, and foundered ; while those who had kept unsullied the white robe provided for them, fearlessly drew near, grasping tightly the book from which they had never parted, and looking upward, at the word of command, calmly stepped into the dark waters: methought upon their approach the hideous form flitting over the waveless deep, no longer wore so sombre and terrific an aspect, but became brighter and brighter every moment, his portentous smile was exchanged for one of heavenly radiance, the scythe had vanished, and in lieu of it I beheld a glorious wreath of amaranthine flowers, while the other hand sustained a golden harp. If my astonishment was great at such a transformation, imagine to what an extent it must have been increased, upon perceiving those I have just mentioned, instead of being submerged as the others, actually floating upon the surface of the waters !-a Branch apparently of the Olive sustained them. I beheld them safely landed on the opposite shore; my ears were saluted with the most ravishing strains of celestial music; an insupportable brightness dazzled my sight, so that I could not discern what was beyond the river, save that in the hands of each was placed a palm, and on their heads a crown of gold, and around them a robe of purest white. A loud shout of triumph arose as from millions of glad voices, mingled with the sound of harpers, harping with their harps; in which striving to participate, I awoke, and lo! it was a dream.
(To be concluded in our next.)
CAUSES OF THE REVIVAL OF POPERY.
To the Editor of the Protestant Magazine. The revival of Popery after the power of the Pope, as a political sovereign, seemed to be so completely cut down, and prostrated by Buonaparte, is certainly very extraordinary. It may be instructive to consider what human means have been made instrumental in producing this revival. No doubt, the first and chief of these was the fatal Emancipation Act (as it is called) of 1829. By that disastrous measure, Great Britain laid down her protest and betrayed her trust, as the guardian of the fortress of Christianity, which this nation, up to that time, might be considered to be. It must be remarked, too, that the introduction of the heresy of Puseyism into our Church, and the repudiation of the doctrines of the Reformation by many of our clergy, with the apostasy of several to Rome, have all been consequent upon that lamentable event.
Another cause of this revival of Popery may be found in the general indifference among the people to the cause of true religion, and there. fore a total absence of that indignation against Popery which prevailed to such a height in the reign of James II., that that bigotted monarch was compelled to abdicate his throne, exclaiming that even his own children had forsaken him. This indifference to the truth may be attributed to the increased intercourse betwixt this country and the Continent, as well as to that great luxury and dissoluteness of morals which are too frequently the consequence of national prosperity, such as, under the blessing of God, we have enjoyed to an unprecedented degree beyond all other nations. • Another cause is, that those courts of Europe which favoured the principles of the Reformation at the outset have now withdrawn their protection, and become quite lukewarm in the matter. We hear now of no champions of the Protestant cause, like the Elector of Saxony, · among the rulers of this world, or among men in high and influential stations. Nay, it is to be feared that some of the descendants of the great families who distinguished themselves by supporting the Reformation are now pursuing an opposite line of conduct. · But it is chiefly by the aid of Infidelity that this revival of Popery may be said to have been effected. We seem to live in days in which, according to the prophetic words of our blessed Lord and Saviour, “iniquity abounds, and the love of many has waxed cold.” Infidelity is alarmingly prevalent, and in many modified forms. One of these is modern Liberalism. This form has now unhappily become quite fashionable in England, and in other states and countries which once were decidedly Protestant and opposed to Romanism. In this melancholy desertion of principle England is now taking the lead in her Councils and her Parliaments. Infidelity is the natural ally of Popery. Indeed they both spring from the same parent and the same Satanic source. Infidelity is always found assisting Popery by political means, at least in England, and it is in this way that the latter has acquired of late years such a powerful ascendancy in the councils of this nation. The Infidel and Liberal press, too, are all engaged in the service of Popery. In former times, literature and the public press, and the VOL. IX.-March, 1847.
New Series, No. 15.
diffusion of knowledge were always supposed to aid the cause of truth, freedom, and Christianity. But, alas! they are now almost all employed for purposes quite the reverse, and that to a grievous and 'unbounded extent.
Would that it were possible to stop here, in reviewing the causes which have produced this revival of Popery. But we fear that the Dissenters, who in the time of the Commonwealth were so zealously opposed to it, are now, in the most infatuated manner, actually advancing its progress, by espousing the cause of modern Liberalism in preference and to the prejudice of the cause of Christianity. The violence of their party spirit, and their hatred of the Established Church, seem to predominate over every better feeling. When we see a body of Christians adopting a course of conduct so injurious to the interests of the Church of Christ at a momentous crisis like the present, we cannot forbear exclaiming, with mingled emotions of grief and indignation, Shame-shame-shame!
AN OLD MEMBER.
ROMISH COLLEGE AT OSCOTT.
Now, Mr. Editor, I beg to ask of you, whether during one of the Reform Administrations this very Romish College of Oscott was not sanctioned by a Royal Warrant? I think you will find the fact noticed in one of the numbers of the “Protestant Magazine,” now of course some time ago.
[This College is now aggregated to the London University.Ed. P. M.]
NATIONAL SINS AND NATIONAL PUNISHMENT, In ordinary matters, it is dangerous and presumptuous to interpret, with a direct application, what may well be broadly deemed God's judgments. But the present is no ordinary matter. God, as the moral Governor of the world, has been daringly insulted by the successive acts of our Legislature: and evil has promptly and enduringly followed each act. We may, peradventure, err in directly connecting the evil with the insult : but still, if it be a mistake, we cannot err in our endeavour to extract wisdom from even a supposed connexion of cause and effect.*
There seems to be a very general impression, that the present calamity is a judgment from God: though there may be a difference of opinion as to the special sin which has called down this judgment. In the wonderful course of God's Providence, good frequently springs from evil. I have been credibly informed, that, among the lower classes of the Irish Papists, a persuasion is gaining ground, that the calamity is a judgment upon the wickedness of their priests, for cursing Protestants from their polluted altars, and for denouncing all who presume to read the Bible. The result of this belief is, I am told, that doors are now opened to the visits of Protestants, which were previously shut against them.