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risdiction. But the case of Wilfrid, Archbishop of York, who being condemned in England on account of holding pluralities, appealed to Rome, shows how such encroachments were regarded. The Pope, indeed, gave sentence in his favor, and sent two Nuncios to see it executed. Thus ready were the Pontiffs to seize every opportunity that might in any way enable them to claim a power, which claim could in after-times be urged as proof that the power existed. But King Alfred distinctly told the Nuncios, that " a person twice plainly condemned by the whole council of England, could not be restored upon a Pope's Letter." Nor was Wilfrid restored, until he had given up some of his pluralities; so that it was not the Pope who restored him, but the law to which he submitted. So fared the great appeal case before the Conquest.
About the year 1085, William the Conqueror separated the civil and ecclesiastical courts, for purposes best known to himself; but at the same time held in strong check the authority which the Roman Pontiff was eager to exercise in England; and forbad any appeal to be made to him, without his especial license.
Henry I., exposed to the odium of usurpation, and threatened with invasion from Normandy, undertook, in order to ingratiate himself with the people, to restore the Saxon laws. Amongst the changes thus introduced, bringing things back to the state in which they were in the time of Edward the Confessor, he endeavored to reunite the civil and ecclesiastical courts. He was, however, overborne in the matter, by Anselm, and the rather no doubt that some points there were on which Anselm was clearly in the right. To Henry succeeded the usurper Stephen, under whom the divorce between the two courts was finally effected. In this reign also, the Roman civil and canon law was introduced into England; "and the Church of Rome availing itself of the civil wars, imported the doctrine of appeals to the court of Rome, as a branch of the canon law, though it had always been forbidden by English laws.”* An original authority enables us to fix this introduction to the Council of London in 1151, when the Legatine Bishop of Winchester "thrice appealed to the Roman Pontiff." From this period appeals appear to have gone on; although not without protest, as for instance, at the Council of Clarendon, under Henry II., where they were forbidden.
It is unnecessary to trace out the history of Appeals any Hart's Eccl. Records, p. 33.
Stephen's De Lolme, c. II, § 4.
further. Enough has been said to show, that the statute of 1532, which forbad Appeals to the court of Rome, was no more than restoring things to their ancient condition, and giving back to the King, as the chief magistrate of the kingdom, a power which he had always exercised, until it was fraudulently taken from him. The same line of Historical remark may be readily applied to the several subjects of Annates, Bulls, and Dispensations. In all these cases, the results will be the same.
Now whatever we may think of this commingling of the civil and ecclesiastical powers, it is quite obvious that from the very earliest times they had been commingled in England; and that therefore an interference by a foreign power with the one, was of necessity an interference also with the other. And since in this way, the evils and corruptions to be reformed, thus took a civil line, it became a matter of absolute necessity that the reforms should take the same line, and be made by the power of the State. Neither is it at all remarkable, that a superficial observer like Mr. Macaulay, should fancy that he sees in the joint action of the Church and State, tokens of a present compromise between them, when, in fact, it is only the restoration of an ancient union. An union which indeed we may well wish had never occurred; but whose restoration implied no more than a return to the ancient usages of the realm.
Another opinion of the age, must also be taken into view, as going far to account for Civil interference, without resorting to the idea of compromise. It was then the theory, that ecclesiastical regulations of whatsoever kind, must not be allowed merely to rest on the spiritual authority of the Church, but that the secular arm must be invoked in order to make them legally coercive. And moreover as such arrangements were intended to apply to and to govern all, the consent of all orders would naturally be sought.
Whatever view then we may take abstractly of the powers of the King in matters ecclesiastical in the realm of England; however much we may be disposed to regard it as inconsistent with the powers and prerogatives of that kingdom which is not of this world, still enough has been adduced to show, that Mr. Macaulay is only giving utterance to a vulgar error when he says, that at the Reformation the power of the Pope was transferred to the King. The true conclusion, supported by the facts and considerations just adduced, shall be given in the words of others. Says Archbishop Bramhall, in his immortal Vindication: "The laws made by King Henry in this
behalf, were not operative, but declarative; not made to create any new law, but only to vindicate and restore the ancient laws of England, and its ancient jurisdiction to the crown. There had needed no restitution, if there had not been some usurpation. . . . Therefore our Ecclesiastical Law was called the King's Law, because the edge and validity thereof did proceed from authority royal, our Ecclesiastical Courts were styled the King's Courts by his judges. It is true the habitual jurisdiction of Bishops flows from their ordination; but the actual exercise thereof in public Courts after a coercive manner, is from the gracious concessions of Sovereign Princes. In a word, the law being merely intended as a remedy against. usurpation, it cannot be a new law, but only a legislative declaration of the old common law of England." Says Stephens, in his invaluable Introduction to De Lolme: "Upon these principles and facts, the Parliament and Convocation resolved, that the Pope's power in England had no good foundation, and had been managed with as much tyranny, as it had begun with usurpation. . . . That therefore, no other effectual remedy existed, but to extirpate this pretended authority, and thenceforth to acknowledge the Pope only as Bishop of Rome, with the jurisdiction defined by the ancient canons; and for the King to reassume his own authority, from which the Kings of England had never formally departed."
It appears then, that there was no such thing intended or done, as taking away the power of the Pope and transferring it to the King. There was no compromise whatever between the ecclesiastical and the temporal authorities. The line of Romish corruptions, trenching on the rights, powers, and privileges of a Christian State, centered in, and expressed by, the person of the King, rendered the interference of the Civil power absolutely essential. It therefore did interfere. And in its interference did restore things to their ancient condition in the realm of England. Whether that condition be in itself good or bad; that is, whether it be well or ill for the civil and ecclesiastical jurisdiction to be thus united; whether it be or be not desirable that spiritual government should be constituted the law of the land, is a totally distinct question. We of course say no. The age of the Reformation said yes, repeating the answer of many previous centuries; but that does not affect the fact that the laws then passed, and above considered, were a restitution, not a compromise.
Neither can it make any thing against this view, that some of these very laws have been used, as even a Tudor would not have used them, and as the clergy of England could never
have anticipated that they would be used, by that Ministry of which Mr. Macaulay is a member. It only shows that they understand as little as himself the true ground of the English Reformation, and can give to the letter of an ancient statute, a more tyrannical exposition, than even the eighth Henry, and it shows no more. But we pass on to consider somewhat at length, a point so intimately connected with what has gone before, as to make this the proper place for introducing it; that is, the Royal Supremacy.
Mr. Macaulay's view of the Supremacy, like most of his other views of ecclesiastical matters, is the vulgar and superficial one, which is the joint offspring of ignorance and prejudice. We certainly have no wish to defend the Supremacy as such, though there is one point of view under which it needs no defence at the hands of any one. So far as it contained and expressed the doctrine, that any State has the supreme power over its citizens in all matters save spiritual ones, it does no more than advance a claim which is essentially necessary to the State's well being. And it takes, in this point of view, its place, beside those other enactments of which we have been speaking, and which Roman usurpation of the prerogatives of the State had rendered needful. In any other point of view than this, we are not concerned to defend it; and here it plainly does not need defence. So far as it touched on matters ecclesiastical, it must be reckoned as the view of the age; erroneous indeed it may appear to us, but still sanctioned by ancient prescription, invested with many venerable attributes, and endeared by many holy memories; while the idea of State interference in spiritual things, is far enough from being peculiar to England.
With all this, however, it is quite necessary to inquire how far Mr. Macaulay is supported by facts in the extreme view which he takes of the Supremacy, and consequently of the right, now mixed up with it, of ministerial interference in the affairs of the Church. For by a natural law of connexion, these two things are, with him, inseparably joined. So that however much the liberal politician may be disposed to cry down the very idea of the Supremacy, yet the ministerial historian is at the same time bound to make as much of it as he can. The true view, we believe, may be reached by answering two questions. First, what did the Sovereigns themselves consider the Supremacy? Secondly, in what way did the Clergy receive and regard it? Some other matters, incidental to these main inquiries, will be considered as we proceed. It will also be observed, that we leave out of view the question,
how the servile courtiers of King Henry may, for their own evil purposes, have chosen to look upon it. This is too obvious a piece of justice, to require more than the merest mention.
In answer to our first question, there are several facts to be alledged. There is extant, a letter from Henry himself to Tunstall, Bishop of Durham, who objected to the title Head, in which he limits his own jurisdiction to temporals, or things of a mixed nature at the most; claiming that in these he was Head in the realm, and that since there was none above him, he was also Supreme Head. And he adds,-contradicting Mr. Macaulay and Neal, who both declare that there was no qualification,-"We be, as God's law suffereth us to be, whereunto we do, and must conform ourselves." In his letter also to the Convocation of York, he assured them, "that he claimed nothing more, than what Christian princes in the primitive times, assumed to themselves in their own dominions." Queen Elizabeth also, solemnly declared, that, "she never did, nor would she ever challenge authority and power to minister Divine Service in the Church; nor would she ever challenge any other authority than her predecessors, Henry VIII. and Edward VI., used." Neal himself admits, and it would be well if all his party had been as honest, that the "Kings and Queens of England never pretended to the character of spiritual persons, or to exercise any part of the ecclesiastical functions in their own persons."
How then, it may be asked, if all this be really so, are we to understand the wording of the very Act of Supremacy, which seems to commit every thing into the hands of the King?. Let Bramhall answer. "One doubt still remains, how ecclesiastical jurisdiction could be said to be derived from the crown. First, with the Romanists themselves, I distinguish between habitual and actual jurisdiction. Habitual jurisdiction is derived only by ordination. Actual jurisdiction is a right to exercise that Habit, arising from the lawful application of the matter or the subject. In this latter, the lay Patron, and much more the Sovereign Prince, have their respective interests and concurrence. Dioceses and Parishes were not of Divine but human arrangement; and the same persons were born subjects, before they were made Christians. The ordinary gives a schoolmaster a license or habitual power to teach, but it is the parents of the children who apply or subtract the matter, and furnish him with scholars, or afford him a fit subject whereon to exercise this habitual power.
"Secondly, we must also distinguish between the interior and the exterior courts-between the court of conscience and the