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“Those that separate from our Churches, both with a privative separation (not joining with us in any Ordinances) or with a positive separation, setting up and gathering distinct opposite assemblies, these think that they have reason for it. About the year of Christ, 253, lived one Novatus, first under Cyprian, after at Rome, who denied any benefit by repentance to such as had denied Christ, though for fear and in the heat of persecution, or had fallen into any gross sin after baptism; and he drew many after him, men well conceited of themselves above others, who therefore were called Cathari (or Puritans, a name very basely given to the best of men, of late, by way of reproach) : and after that about the year of Christ, 331, one Donatus drew a great party after him, though both these are reported to have made those separations out of discontent and for by-ends, as missing some expected preferments, &c., and did separate from the church upon this pretence—that in the church, wicked were mingled with the godly, who did defile the godly in the communion of the Sacrament; and affirmed the true church to be nowhere, nor any true baptism anywhere, but only in their church in Africa; and therefore re-baptised all (as the Anabaptists now do), that came to join in communion with them: they said that Sacraments were onlyholy when they were administered by holy persons; and when they were pressed by the Emperor to reform, they said Quid Imperatori cum Ecclesia ? as the Anabaptists and Separatists say now, when opposed by the civil magistrate, Magistratui Christiano nihil cum sacris (say they), the civil magistrate hath nothing to do in matters of religion, as if he was not Custos utriusque tabulæ. Afterward about the year of Christ 371, one Audens, a Syrian, pretending great strictness of life, and zeal, got a company of followers, who separated from the Church, and would not pray with other Christians (almost like those Isa. lxv. 5), crying down Bishops for their riches, &c. (vituperabant Episcopos, Divites ipsos appellantes); and gave this reason for their separation, because (said they) Usurers and other impure livers were suffered in the bosom of the Church (were there not as bad in the Jewish Church when Christ joined with it? and as foul errors in the churches of Galatia, Gal. i. 6, and iii. 1-4, and Corinth, I. Cor. ï. 18-22, and xv, 12, &c. ?). In the days of Queen Elizabeth these opinions did much start up in England, as not long before they had done at Munster, and up and down in Germany, amongst a sort called Anabaptists (though the errors grew and were multiplied) : one Bolton made a great separation upon the fore-mentioned principles, yet afterwards he recanted at Paul's-Cross, and in the end hanged himself. After that, one BARROW held up those opinions, and writ bitterly against others not of his opinion: whom Queen Elizabeth (though I no way commend that fact) caused, therefore, to be hanged on Tower Hill. But especially one ROBERT BROWNE rose up, and maintained and practised this separation (from whom his followers are called Brownists). Browne was a gentleman of a very ancient family in Queen Elizabeth's days, but of a very crabbed nature, and no great clerk (as Tully said of some in his days that they were boni quidem viri, sed non admodum literati), it was not much learning that made him mad, Acts xxvi. 24. He was schoolmaster in Southwark, and after preacher at Islington, near London ; and about the year 1580 went oversea with his gathered followers, unto Middleburgh in Zealand; yet there his Church (having no superior government in church-matters above themselves to direct and correct them) fell to jar
rings, broke in pieces; many turned Anabaptists: Browne returned into England, and once recanted his opinions, took a parsonage in Northamptonshire, at the hand of a Bishop (though some say he did never preach at it, but turned to loose life), and died very aged, at Northampton, in prison; not at all for his opinion, but as some say, for his not paying a constable-rate, and striking the constable that demanded it; others say, for debt to his curate, who officiated for him at his parsonage. After this the Johnsons, both father and sons, separated upon the like grounds; and went with their congregation to Amsterdam; but there they broke all in pieces, and many turned Anabaptists; and one of the Johnsons excommunicated first his brother George, and then his father. Then one Smith (that writ formerly a comment on the Lord's Prayer), he went over to Ley (sic) in Holland, with his followers, upon the former grounds; yet afterwards renounced his opinion; but after that, he again flew so high, that he turned not only Anabaptist, but Sebaptist, and baptised himself, as not having any other that he knew of, fully of his opinion ; and accused the rest for looking on their Bibles in time of preaching, and on their Psalm-books in time of singing psalms. AINSWORTH (a learned man and great Rabbin, who writ learnedly on the Pentateuch, and other books of Scripture, and a good man, and so probably for the main were many of the others,) he upon the like grounds separated, and went into Ireland with his followers, and after he returned to Amsterdam in Holland; and after his death, his church long remained in Amsterdam without officers, till John CANNE (of late a preacher to the garrison of soldiers in Hull, under Colonel Overton) took upon him to be their pastor, whom in time they also excommunicated. Learned
and pious Mr. ROBINSON also separated, and went (as the others) beyond sea; but being mightily convinced by learned Dr. Ames, and Mr. Parker (two great nonconformists but no Separatists, who desired Reformation not Separation; or who separated from the corruption in, not communion with, the true church, as Mr. Dod, Mr. Hildersham, and others also did); this Robinson so far thereby came back, that he approved of communion with the Church of England, in the hearing of the word and prayer, (though not in sacraments and discipline) and so occasioned the rise of such as are called Semists, that is Semiseparatists, or Independants, (many of whom are pious good men :) And all these thought that their tenents were very rational: So Bernard Rotman the first Anabaptist, and Islebius Agricola, the first Antinomian, both in Germany, once recanted their errors in a public auditory, and printed their recantation; yet they both relapsed after into their former errors, (when Luther was dead and out of their way) and died in them and thonght them very reasonable: But, alas! pride, selfendedness, and cursed lusts, blind and bias men's reason,-John Shaw's Advice to his Son, 1664. MS. pp. 450-4.
THE MAY-FLOWER. It cannot be denied that there is something which strikes pleasingly on the ear in the name of the vessel which carried over Brewster and Bradford, and the first settlers, and this may justify the frequent reference which is made to it by those who speak on public occasions of the early history of New Plymouth. Nor is the subject of Naval Nomenclature, in general, one which is quite undeserving attention. The following lists taken from original documents may serve as the beginning of a more complete treatise on the subject.
The Thirteenth Century.
The prevalent names are-
The Fourteenth Century.