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ment, which was powerfully and convincingly written, she asked a leading personage at Cheltenham, whether public opinion there ran » strongly against her as her letter averred. She was told, it did; and that the advice given in the round-robin was, in the opinion of ha counsellor, judicious and sound.'
'" Then I will quit Cheltenham without delay."
'Whether she did so, and only reached the first stage of her joorner — or whether, when all her hasty preparations were complete, she was suddenly taken ill, I am unable to state positively. This I can affirm, that the vexation and annoyance consequent on the round-robin. brought on the illness which rapidly terminated her existence. She died in the same week as the Queen; and their funeral processions passed on the road. Strange that they shonld thus meet, both silent in death—the injurer and the injured—the oppressor and the victim!'
Vol. II. pp. 190—195.
The poor Queen! Hard was the measure dealed out to her. The subject recalls to us some stanzas on her death, which have never appeared among Lord Byron's remains; yet, to what other j>en may they be ascribed?
'Daughter of Brunswick, Britain's injured Queen,
Mother of Britain's Heiress, o'er whose tomb
A boisterous day, shut up in sudden gloom.
Betrayed to faithless nuptials; all thy bloom
No child to soothe thine age; it was thy doom,
'In England's cause thy sire, thy brother bled,
And Europe trembled when the Brunswick fell.
That debt have nobly paid. Was it not well
To goad thee into exile, there to dwell
Add insult to the loss, seeking to quell
'When driven at length to turn upon thy foe,
And brave his malice in the form of kw,
With firmness that might well the guilty awe,
Oh, what a scene the astonished nation saw!
Counsel, on Virtue's side, to prove thy flaw,
'And there they sate, drinking in, day by day,
The nauseous tale of hired and perjured spy,
Were sworn to by the dregs of Italy,
The well-drilled tools of dark conspiracy.
The Treasury mandate, and foul calumny,
'Oh, bad that "good old King ", thy friend and sire,
Who think by proxy, and who vote by hire,
How would the Churchmen, then, with honours due,
Hinting that some things Princes may not do,
And talked of Moral Law in language sage and true!
'But thou art gone! And what imports it now,
Buried alike thy pleasures and thy cares,
And courtly prelates grudged their scanty prayers?
While prayers availed thee, better far than theirs,
—Where peers are not the judges.—Malice dares
Art. IV. The Harmony of Religious Truth and Human Reason asserted, in a Series of Essays; by John Howard Hinton, A.M. 12mo. pp. xxxiii., 336. London. 1832.
appearance of this little work exhibits strikingly the character of the age. Within the compass of 336 pages of a duodecimo, the Author professes to illustrate and establish the 'Harmony of Religious Truth ', that is, of the revealed truths of religion, 'and human reason.' A century or two ago, almost any one of the numerous topics discussed, would have furnished ample matter for a full-sized quarto; and, in the hands of Baxter, most of them would have been logically conducted to the noble magnitude of a folio. Nor would the quarto or the folio have been long a load upon the shelves of the publisher, or a pressure on the funds of the author. Howe's, Baxter's, Goodwin's, Owen's massy productions were not profitless, either to their booksellers or to themselves. Prodigious readers, as well as incessant thinkers, were not infrequent in those days.
Vol. ix. — N.b. 3 F
That peculiar faculty of the human mind, so sensitive in these improved times, which enables us at once to detect the quality of books to which we give the expressive name of dryness, was then for the most part undeveloped; —a quality from which it is of indispensable importance that authors should preserve their productions, on whatever subjects,, as free as possible. To the operation of this principle in- the present advanced state of intellectual improvement, we are chiefly indebted for the facility and despatch with which we clear away difficulties, and' disencumber ourselves of an immense expenditure of mental toil. Mankind, it is said, vainly wearied themselves in the pursuit of impalpable distinctions, of metaphysical differences of ideas; in superfluous attention to the minute inequalities, the mere shades of diversity in objects of thought; while we, with a manly neglect of such busy trifling, by the sound, robust, instantaneous grasp of a healthy mind, lay hold at once of the master principles of things, and traverse the regions of knowledge with ease and satisfaction. In judicious conformity with the demands of this masculine age, therefore,. Mr. Hinton has, in fourteen short and popular essays, disposed of the profound questions connected with the following subjects: —
'The Existence of God—The nature and capacity of man*— Divine Revelation—The revealed character of God—God's moral government of man—The effects of the fall—A future state—The elements of future happiness and' misery—The eternity of future punishments— The accusatory aspect of the Gospel—Hereditary Depravity—Whether Christ died for all men?—The nature and practicability of repentance—and the nalure and criminality of unbelief.'
The discussion of these several topics, within the limit prescribed to himself, is certainly characterized by considerable ability, and by quite as much of thought and closeness of reasoning, as will in general be deemed sufficient, if not somewhat beyond the due boundary. But what chiefly distinguishes this volume is the temerity with which the author ventures out of the regular track, and rather heretically assumes the right to think over again upon matters which have been long since thought out to perfection, as well as to publish the results of such unlicensed independency of mental exercise.
As belonging to a definite section of christian ministers, the Author cannot but be regarded as a little too bold, to be esteemed a prudent man. It is marvellous that he should not have known the precise phraseology in which he ought to have delivered himself on most of these subjects. Yet, notwithstanding this error, notwithstanding the acknowledged evil of it, and its unknown consequences, and moreover, notwithstanding the tone of antagonist dictatorship, not unfrequently assumed in opposition to fixed standards of religious belief, wc confess that wc have fch
-the refreshing influence of this novelty. We are ready to admit, that there may be points in popular and established belief, which will allow of reconsideration; and though we may not be willing to yield the ground entirely to this aggressive champion, we will not complain that he obliges us to repair or reconstruct some of our fences.
To harmonize scriptural truth with reason, will be thought by some to be an ominous announcement in the very title. The language of not a few is, What has faith to do with reason, except to abase it, to oppose its presumptuous dictates, and to eject it from its usurped dominion? Many a professed admirer of Doddridge venerates maxims, and holds discourse, which seem to represent him as having been but ill employed, when professedly confuting the work entitled " Christianity not founded in argument." Nevertheless we cannot help thinking with the present Writer, that Christian faith, in its sublimest exercises, should not be irrational faith; and that to discard our reason under any pretext whatever, were • an act in which it would be difficult to prove that we were not insane. But if it may not be easy to de'termine how far a man can renounce his reason, vilify and contemn its dictates, and yet be of sound mind; much less is it to define, how far it may be deemed a religious effort, to unmake ourselves, to disclaim the main distinction of humanity, to put out the mental eye, take darkness for the purest light, or contradictions for the tests of truth. The impugners of our reason must certainly be still in the school of subtilties; their meaning is not to be understood: they cannot intend to say that religion is delirium, however impossible, on their principle, it may be to distinguish them.
Many there are, who venture to assign a province to human reason, even in religion, but who limit its range within but scanty boundaries. They suppose that there exists an undefinable peculiarity in these exalted themes, such that while, on other subjects of inquiry, reason must be wide awake, the constant guide of lower faculties, there are departments here, from which it must be quite excluded,—awful recesses which we must enter without this leading faculty; sacred abodes of thoughts in which, by voluntarily becoming less, we may imagine ourselves to be more than reasonable beings. Yet may we not ask, what can we know in theology, more than in any other science, without reason? When the eye is closed, how can we distinguish day from night? On no subject is the confusion of men's thoughts more perversely inextricable than on this. They mistake the office of human reason, and deny her claims in matters of religion, only because they attribute to her, prerogatives beyond her rights on other subjects. Reason is not less at fault in other sciences than in theology, when she presumes beyond her province; nor, when restricted to her office, is she more our guide. In other objects of thought, she knows as little of the essences, the intimate modes of subsistence, as of the nature of God, the mysteries of his being, or the manners of his operation. To explain the nature of existence, of powers, of operation, even in things with which we are most familiar, is quite beyond her range; nor have we any other faculty competent to the task. Why then the distinction so often made, between the sphere of reason on other subjects, and on those to which religion directs our contemplation? Do we renounce that faculty because we admit the fact of living plants, of living animals, of the electrical phenomena, or those of gravity, though wholly ignorant of the nature of their operating principles, or the manner in which they work the ends assigned to them by their Creator? Why then should we allow a charge of irrationality so far as to imagine ourselves called upon in some long and laboured efforts to apologize, because we believe in modes of being, and in energies connected with the moral order of the universe, of the precise nature and action of which we can give no account? Craft, presumption, folly, have brought this accusation, and we inconsiderately have allowed it to have at least something of force and seeming justness. Yet the charge itself is destitute even of colourable pretence, and we ought to repel it with a merited rebuke. Reason, and the admission of a mysterious fact, have not the slightest mutual repugnance, nor even the semblance of incongruity. They who insinuate the contrary, do but betray their ignorance or guile.
To see clearly the truth of this remark, it is only necessary to consider what we mean by reason. Some vaguely imagine it to be a power of directly exploring, or of intuitively discerning the very essence of the objects of its judgement;—a fallacy which the slightest reflection must at once dispel. Some, again, take for its rule, their own narrow experiences, the shreds of disorderly knowledge which they have casually thrown together in their progress through life and intercourse with its affairs; whence they affirm a moral statement to be reasonable or the contrary, as it accords or disagrees with this internal standard. One or other of thet,e notions, or perhaps a mixture of both, must certainly lie at the foundation of conceited rejections of mystery in religion, under the pretence of being rational. Why else not shew the inconsistency of mystery with reason, the incongruity with it of belief in Unexplained occurrences? or rather, why do not the rationalists at once profess to disbelieve that they themselves live, think, will, and act?
The reason of things is either the necessary, or the appointed order of their existence; their essential or their determined connexion with each other; and the faculty of reason in us, is the menul power by which we ascertain this existing order, the limits of such