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Communion and Baptismal Offices



FROM THE YEAR 1549 TO 1662.

















THE Services and Rubrics of the Prayer Book generally are become an object of so much interest both to the Clergy and Laity of the Church, that this circumstance alone will, it is hoped, be a sufficient apology for the following pages, the design of which is to exhibit the variations which from time to time have taken place in its two principal Offices, those namely which relate to the administration of the Holy Sacraments.

The original intention of the Editor was to have collated the entire Book, but on further consideration it appeared to him that the variations of the other portions were either too well known, or not sufficiently important, to warrant so extensive a plan, and also that being frequently confined to the Books of K. Edward, they are already to be found in an important work entitled, "The two Books of Common Prayer set forth by authority of Parliament, in the reign of King Edward the Sixth, compared with each other.”

So far then as relates to these Books exclusively no additional information is required. But the plan, it is conceived, requires to be carried out in regard to the Editions which followed after, and particularly in reference to the Offices selected in the present collation. The state of the Liturgy during the reign of Elizabeth is still but imperfectly understood. The copies of that period are extremely scarce; and at the same time it must be interesting to learn to what extent they differ from the preceding Books or from each other. Again, the Books of James the First contain important Rubrical variations in the Office for Private Baptism, and the Scottish Liturgy, although of a later date, possesses independently of its relation to the English Books, an interest on several accounts peculiar to itself.

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The object of the following Collation is to place these Books in juxtaposition with each other and with those of K. Edward VI., by which means the reader is presented at one view with the revisions and alterations which have occurred from the year 1549 to 1662. A plan similar to this was adopted by the learned L'Estrange in his "Alliance of Divine Offices," and it is certainly more intelligible, and better calculated to impress the differences upon the memory than a Commentary. But his view is somewhat unconnected and broken, and therefore troublesome to examine whether in reference to the matter, or, which is no immaterial circumstance, to the order and arrangement of the several portions.

With a view of rendering the present work more complete, it has been thought desirable to offer a short introduction to the several Books which the Editor has undertaken to collate. Much indeed is to be said upon them all, and a great deal of minute and curious criticism has been more particularly of late bestowed on the earlier editions of the Prayer Book, but as the present volume is confined to the Liturgy (strictly a so called) and to the Offices for Baptism, it must suffice in reference to the remainder to embrace only the material variations of each revision, the causes which led to them, the period of their insertion, and the authority on which they rest.

The history of the Book of Common Prayer from the time of Edward VI. is comprehended under six epochs ;-that of 1549, when the original Book of K. Edward made its appearance that of 1552, when it was revised-that of Elizabeth, 1559-that of James I. 1603-that of Charles I. [Scotch Liturgy 1637.] and that of Charles II. 1662, when it was settled in its present form.

Previously however to the publication of the first of these formularies there had been set forth an "Order of the Communion," printed the viii. day of March MDXLVIII. "This office, (to use the words of Heylin) was framed by godly

a Viz. the Service used in the celebration of the Eucharist, which is generally so denominated in the writings of the Ancients. "In the Eastern Churches," says Mr. Palmer, "that Service (though sometimes known by other

appellations) has long borne the title of the divine' or 'mystical' Liturgy. In the West, the Eucharistic Office has most commonly been called 'missa;' but the term 'liturgy' has also been frequently applied to it."

Bishops and other learned men appointed by the King's command to consult together about an uniform order for administering the holy Communion in the English tongue, under both kinds of Bread and Wine, according to the Act of Parliament made in that behalf, which persons so convened together (if at least they were the same which made the First Liturgy in this King's reign, as I think they were) were those who follow :-Thomas Cranmer, Abp. of Cant., Thomas Goodrich, Bp. of Ely, Henry Holbeck, Bp. of Lincoln, George Day, Bp. of Chichester, John Skip, Bp. of Hereford, Thomas Thirlby, Bp. of Westminster, Nicholas Ridley, Bp. of Rochester, R. Cox, Dean of Christ Church, Dr. May, Dean of St. Paul's, Dr. Taylor, Dean of Lincoln, Dr. Heynes, Dean of Exeter, Dr. Robertson, afterwards Dean of Durham, and Dr. Redmaine, Master of Trinity Coll. in Cambridge: who being thus convened together, and taking into consideration as well the right rule of the Scripture, as the usage of the primitive Church, agreed on such a form and order as might comply with the intention of the King, and the Act of Parliament, without giving any just offence to the Romish party."

The Service at this time drawn up, left the Office of the Mass to be still said in Latin to the end of the Canon and the Communion of the Priest, but it also added a form of Communion for the People according to the following order: 1. an Exhortation before Communion, (differing from that of 1549 in the article of Restitution, which was subsequently inserted,) II. an Exhortation at the Communion, III. the Invitation, Iv. the Confession, v. the Absolution, vi. the Sentences, VII. the Prayer of humble access, VIII. the Delivery of the Elements, Ix. the Benediction, x. a Rubric respecting the Bread, and another for consecrating more Wined. This form having received the sanction of the King and the Council was

This was an "Act against such as speak against the Sacrament of the Altar; and for the receipt thereof in both kinds," which Act passed both houses by Dec. 20. 1547. In a Convocation Nov. 5. of the same year, it had been unanimously agreed by the lower house to pass a Declaration sent down from the Bishops that the Communion should be administered in both kinds. Collier, vol. v. 8vo. p. 220. and Burnet, Part ii. book i. p. 41. [1547.]

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