« ForrigeFortsett »
PERSECUTIONS FOR RELIGION, IN PRUSSIA. Translated from the Paris Sémeur.
It is one of the noblest titles to honour, which the ancient electorate of Brandenburg and the modern kingdom of Prussia has ever possessed, that she early spread her shield over the cause of Religious Liberty, and has always heretofore shewn herself disposed to protect and succour those whose consciences were threatened with oppression. The numerous French Reformed Churches which still remain in that country, though their present members are so identified with the German population that many of them have lost the language of their fathers, are monu ments of the gracious reception which the Markgraves of Brandenburg granted to the refugees driven out of their own country by the Revocation of the Edict of Nantz. Also in many of the towns of Prussia there are Moravian and Bohemian Churches, founded [chiefly in the seventeenth century] by the subjects of Austria, who, from faithfulness to their religion, had renounced all they had on earth, and were happy in finding an asylum in this hospitable land. Still further, in our own days, the
VOL. XIX. N. S. No. 133.
reigning sovereign seems to have regarded it as one of his noblest prerogatives, that he could lift up his voice in favour of any sufferers for conscience sake. He has never failed in granting generous aid to his fellow-protestants in Austria, and in joining his efforts with theirs for the support of their religious institutions. So often has he interposed in favour of the Waldenses of Piedmont, that it is now become their constant practice to look up to the Prussian Ambassador at Turin as their natural protector.* When, during the first years of the restoration, persecuting measures were put in force against the Protestants in the south of France, he employed all his influence to obtain from the government of that time a repression of those fanatical outrages.
To the commemorating of such