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The Proteftant Diffenters did not, from the beginning of Queen Elizabeth's reign to the end of Queen Ann's, or fomewhat later, profefs to vary from the established church, in any of the fundamental doctrines of Chriftianity. Proteftantifm fuppofes a belief of thofe fundamental doctrines. None but the moit bigotted papifts will contend, that it is a new religion, invented at the time of the Reformation. It is the Chriftian religion, purified from the errors, in which it had been unhappily involved by the church of Rome; and the principal difference among Proteftants has ever been, about the degree of purity, or the necellary degree of distance from that corrupt church. They were pretty well agreed among themfelves about the reformation of doctrines. They differed among themfelves about church government, forms of worship, and indifferent ceremonies.'
The toleration, granted to Proteftant Diffenters, could not be meant to extend farther, than to the points, in which they differed from the national church. It cannot, without abfurdity, be fuppofed to comprehend the points, in which they agreed with her. If this were less than felf evident, the fubfcription required would abundantly evidence it.
The articles confift of doctrines maintained by the Christian church in general, of doctrines maintained by the Proteftant charch in general, of fpeculative points, agitated among Proteftants at the time of the Reformation, which were not intended by the compilers as credenda, and of pofitions controverted by the Diffenters from our national church. The laft of these they were, upon the principles of toleration, permitted to except in their fubfcription. The reft they were not only supposed to approve, but actually have affented to, in many of their writings.
They had intercourfe with the great men, who drew up the A&t of Toleration, and they were confiderable enough, in a new govern ment, to have had their fcruples in fome meafure confulted, had they entertained any about fundamental doctrines.'—
I gather from the known opinions of churchmen and diffenters, at the time of the Revolution, that the state did not mean to tolerate, and that your predeceffors did not defire a toleration of, teachers of opinions, contrary to the fuppofed fundamental doctrines of the Christian church, of which all Proteftants are members. The complaint was confined to the unreafonable reftraints laid upon particular modes of worship, which restraints the legislature wifely removed, and treated Proteftant Diffenters, as fellow-chriftians, in requiring them to fubfcribe, along with us, to the doctrines of Christianity, to join with us in declarations against popery, and to acquiefce in thofe articles of peace, which were meant to exempt all Proteftants from perplexities of reasoning about the unfearchable counfels of God.
So far, Gentlemen, there is every reafon to apprehend, that the Act of Toleration was intended to continue us united with you as fellow chriftians, though it tolerated your diffent from us, as fellow-proteitants. It did not mean to tolerate different doctrines from thofe of the Chriftian church in general, as appears from the fabfcription required. Your predeceffors did not mean to be tole rated in preaching any doctrine, but fuch as was then deemed Chriftian, as appears from their writings and conduct; and to convince
you fully, that you yourselves agree in this idea of the act, you confefs, in the fixth reafon of your late printed cafe, that the act confines toleration to matters of DISCIPLINE only.'
In fpeaking to the manner of the application, the Author cenfures the Diffenting Minifters for the vifits which they made to members of parliament, and for the letters which were written by fome conflituents to their reprefentatives; and he is equally offended with the time of it, on account of the attacks which had been made upon the church of England, by the Clergy's Petition, the Nullum Tem pus, and the Quakers bills.
Notwithstanding our letter-writer's zeal for fundamental doctrines, it is obfervable that he does not exprefs himself concerning them with the ardor of a bigot, but with the coolnefs of a politician. The pains he hath taken to guard and foften all that he hath faid, and his attempts to reconcile the principles of intolerance with the fpirit of moderation and candour, have, we think, betrayed him into feveral inconfiftencies.
The compofition of this letter is perfpicuous and elegant, and it is probably the production of fome dignitary of our eftablished church. Art. 33. An Anfwer to a Pamphlet, entitled, Reflections on the Impropriety and Inexpediency of Lay-Subscription to the Thirty nine Articles, in the University of Oxford. Addreffed to the Author. 8vo. 6 d. Rivington.
Authority, we perceive, to be an argument of great weight with fome members of the univerfity of Oxford; for we can fee little elfe that is urged in favour of Lay-Subfcription by this fuperficial
Art. 34. The Works of the Reverend George Whitefield, M. A. late of Pembroke College, Oxford, and Chaplain to the Right Hon. the Countefs of Huntingdon. Containing all his Sermons and Tracts which have been already published: With ૩ felect Collection of Letters, written to his mot intimate Friends, and Perfons of Distinction, in England, Scotland, Ireland, and America, from the Year 1734 to 1770, including the whole Period of his Miniftry. Alfo fome other Pieces on important Subjects, never before printed; prepared by himself for the Prefs. To which is prefixed an Account of his Life, compiled from his original Papers and Letters. 8vo. 6 Vols. 11. 11s. Boards. Dilly. The firft, fecond, and third of these volumes contain Mr. Whitefield's literary correfpondence, and furnith a number of particulars which will at once entertain and edify thofe who are not merely his readers but his followers alfo.
In the 4th volume we have his controverfial and other tracts; but have obferved no mark of diftinction between thofe pieces which were formerly published, and thofe which are now first printed.
Vols. 5 and 6 contain his fermons; in which we perceive very few of thofe peculiar flights of fancy, and ftrong touches of tabernacle oratory, which fo richly abounded in a late volume of his difcourfes, noticed in our Review. They are, indeed, for the most part, fuch discourses as might be expected from a fober, fenfible, and pious Calvinistical preacher. With refpect to their authenticity, we fee no room to question it, except in a fingle inftance, viz.
Some time ago, we obferved an advertisement, in the St. James's Chronicle, wherein it was afferted, that the laft difcourfe in the 5th volume (of the collection now before us) was not Mr. W.'s, but taken verbatim from a fermon of the celebrated Dr. Doddridge's, entitled, The Care of the Soul, the one Thing needful. Surprised at this charge against the anonymous editor, (which has never, to our knowledge, been answered,) we made an enquiry concerning the fact, and have found it to be really as the advertiser has fet forth : and we have been further informed, that the fame fermon was printed by Mr. W. himself, as his own, about 20 years ago; which, if true, may ferve to exculpate the editor, who might be ignorant of Doctor D.'s prior claim to the property of this difcourfe; but, in that cafe, what are we to think of the conduct of Mr. Whitefield, whom we have always regarded as an honest enthusiast? honefty and enthufiafm being by no means incompatible.
The life of Mr. Whitefield, though mentioned in the title pages of these volumes, as prefixed to them, does not at prefent + accompany them, but is advertised to come out as a separate publication.
By Tho6 d. Ri
1. Chrift's Riches,-at St. Helen's, York, May 10, 1772.
II. Occafioned by the late Disturbances in the North of Ireland, preached before the Judges of Affize in the Cathedral Church of Armagh, April 12, 1772. By Hugh Hamilton, D. D. F. R. S. Dean of Armagh. 6 d. Nourfe.
III. Preached to a Congregation of Proteftant Diffenters, at CrutchedFriars; occafioned by a Denial of Relief, refpecting Subfcription to the Articles of the Church of England. By E. Radcliff. 8vo. 6 d. Domville. 1772.
A Letter from the Rev. Author of Real Improvements in Agriculture
mentions a very material error of the prefs, by the omiffion of two words in p. 58, where the Author fpeaks of the advantages of ox-draughts. As this paffage occurs in our extracts from that performance, in the prefent month's Review, our Readers are defired to mark the correction, as follows:-P. 24, line 13, for "oxen, properly ufed, will pay for their work, read" will pay for their keeping by work," &c.
We have never feen the treatife on Geodefia §, referred to by Ceftrienfis, nor ever heard of it but by means of this Correfpondent's letter; which informs that it was published laft fummer at Chester.
For the Reviewers acknowledgment of a Letter from Mr. Waldo, fee the laft page of our Appendix to Rev. vol. xlvi. published at the fame time with our Number for the present month.
Does it not seem extraordinary that the Editor of a work of this kind should secret his name from the knowledge of the public?
+ It has been published fince this article was written, in one volume, Svo.
By a Mr. Burns of Tarperly.
ART. I. Political Effays concerning the prefent State of the British Em pire. 4to. Il. I s. Continued.
UR general ideas of the merit of this work, together with a fpecimen of the Author's fentiments concerning liberty, and of his manner of writing, were given in the Review for June laft. We now proceed to his third Effay; in which he treats of agriculture, under the following heads: 1. General remarks. 2. Independency. 3. Population. 4. Riches. 5. Prefent ftate of the practice. 6. Poffible and probable improvements. In this effay the Author writes like a perfon very intimately acquainted with his fubject; and this part of his work has certainly great merit, and well deferves the attention both of the practical cultivator and fpeculative politician.
In the third fection our Author difcufles the important and difficult queftion concerning the population refulting from the divifion of property: he contrasts the best and most plaufible arguments on both fides the question, particularly thofe of Mr. Wallace and Sir James Steuart; and concludes this fubject in the following manner :
In Mr. Wallace's Differtation on the Numbers of Mankind, the great importance of a minute divifion of landed property, is fully proved by the most impartial and judicious review of the political economy of the ancient and most populous nations. Population is a moft undoubted confequence of fuch a divifion, and there can be no doubt but if land in Great Britain was more divided, fhe would be proportionably more populous. More food would be produced, with the attendant confequences mentioned by Mr. Wallace'in the quotation inferted above, for large proprietors have their attention called off from their lands by the luxurious refinements of great cities: wafte tracts are not fo likely to be broken up and cultivated under the aufpices of fuch, as under the fmaller landlord, who feels the neceffity of making his foil produce to the utmost; nor fhould we forget that in general it is impoffible land fhould be fo well cultivated by
tenants as by the owners themfelves. View the vast tracts of uncultivated land, which are fuch a difgrace to this country; they will all be found to belong to confiderable proprietors. Enquire the reafons of their lying wafte, you will be told that it will not anfwer to cultivate them, farmers will hire them for nothing but sheepwalks ;-but raife a little farm-houfe, with a few neceffary buildings, and give the property of twenty acres of the most barren land to a ftout labourer; do you imagine that the nominal barrenness of the foil will deter him from cultivating it? By no means: knowing how fecure he is to reap the profit of his induftry, he will employ himself and his family vigorously in the raifing fome product or other suitable to the foil, and in a few years render his little property an ample fund for the maintenance of a family. This argument, it must however be allowed, will by no means hold good when applied to tenants-they can only occupy fuch lands in large, but cannot afford to pay rent for it in fmall quantities.And this does not proceed from any probable want of profit, but from the want of that eager industry which actuates a man who labours on his own property; and having but a fmall ftock, is neceffitated to make the utmoft of it.
The three British islands are fuppofed to contain about 72,000,000 of acres. It is very difficult to discover what proportion of the furface is occupied by rivers, lakes, rocks, roads, houfes, and tracts, impoffible to cultivate; but there is great reafon to think the quantity not fo confiderable as fome have imagined: ten millions of acres I should apprehend a large allowance; for that is a tract above half as large as the whole island of Ireland. There remains then 60,0co,oco of acres to cultivate. Suppofe this was divided into freeholds of twenty acres each, it forms 3,000,000 of fuch, and of courfe as many families, which, reckoning fix to a family, would amount to 18,000,000 of people, but from this number 1,000,000 may be deducted for thofe of the freeholders who may not marry; though I am well perfuaded the number of fuch would be exceeding fmall. To thefe 17,000,000 we must add the number of manufacturers neceffary for supplying the total with cloathing, implements, &c. and likewife the number employed in public bufinefs; this calculation must be very indefinite; we cannot judge by the prefent proportion, becaufe fuch numbers are employed for exportation, but by calling the total 25,000,000, no exaggeration need be feared. For this number there would be juft two acres and an half per head, a quantity highly fufficient, and efpecially if we confider that no allowance is made for fish; the coafts of these iflands are fo prodigiously well fupplied, and the lakes and rivers are fo abounding with them, that fome millions of people might undoubtedly be fed by them. Coal pits and hedge rows would fupply firing.-The latter at prefent maintain the farmers in fuel, in farms of lefs than twenty acres. Even a ditch need not be loft; I have more than once feen a floping banked one, and yielding a middling crop of potatoes, which they would all do, that had no ftanding water in them, which none ought to have: the rotten wood which falls in them, and the rich foil which is washed into them, form a compost which suits that vegetable; and the fhade of the row, and the trees which grow