Notices of Books

[British Critic, July 1840.]

{258} ONE of the most remarkable publications of this quarter is Mr. Blunt's "Introduction to his Course of Lectures on the early Fathers" (Parker). When such clear and forcible statements of truth come from a divine in the station of the Margaret Professor of the University of Cambridge, what result may we not, under a divine blessing, expect?

Nor is Dublin behind her sister University. Two very eloquent Sermons on "Church Education in Ireland" (Fraser), have been published by Professor Butler, of Trinity College. They are a noble witness to Catholic doctrines, and cannot fail, we should trust, of promoting it.

The Reverend J. C. Crosthwaite has published a volume of Sermons (Rivingtons), which, as all which comes from his pen, is valuable and instructive. We particularly recommend for the attention of thoughtful persons the two Sermons upon the Doctrine of the Holy Trinity.

Mr. Palmer, of Worcester, the well-known author of the "Origines Liturgicę," has added to his other services to our Church by publishing "Episcopacy Vindicated" (Rivingtons), in answer to some papers of Dr. Wiseman, in which he takes that gentleman's own ground, descending into the details of historical facts, and occupying a position from which it is quite impossible for an opponent to dislodge him. In its form it may be mistaken for a defence of the Tracts for the Times, but the substance of the work looks far beyond any ephemeral or local object.

The speech of Mr. Palmer, of Magdalen, read at the May meeting of the Christian Knowledge Society (Rivingtons), is said to have made a great impression on its hearers, and will not make less on its attentive readers. Of course it will be spoken against, but it has that in it which will outweigh many critics.

A very pleasing little work has been sent us, consisting of Poems, by Members of Magdalen School, Oxford. "They are the production," says the Preface, of a few members of a school consisting of not more than twenty scholars, and none of the authors are above sixteen years of age."

Mr. F. W. Faber, of University College, has published a Second Series of eloquent and beautiful "Tracts on the Church and Prayer-Book" (Rivingtons). They are well adapted to interest and improve a large class of persons; the only fear is, lest people should be so interested as to forget to be improved. {259}

We beg to direct the attention of our readers to a well-timed work, which we know to have been compiled with great diligence, and with a strong conviction of the practical importance of the subject. We mean "A Series of Documents and Authorities on the Duty, Advantage, and Necessity of Public Catechizing in the Church," by the Reverend John Ley, Fellow of Exeter College, Oxford, to whom we are indebted for the republication of Bishop Beveridge's work on the Church Catechism.

"Christian Catholic Prayer" (Graham, Oxford), is for a family or individual; it consists of forms for morning, six, nine, twelve, and three o'clock; evening, bed-time, midnight, and on the eve of the Holy Communion. In saying that they answer to their title, we say as much of them as their author can desire. We heartily wish them extended circulation.

Mr. Marriott's Lecture, delivered at the Diocesan College, Chichester (Mason, Chichester), has about it a reality and moral strength which argues well for the society committed to his superintendence.

Mr. Brewer has edited that serviceable work, Bishop Cosin's "History of Popish Transubstantiation" (Leslie), and has printed the authorities at full length. He has subjoined a curious account, now for the first time printed from a MS. of Cosin's in the Bodleian Library, of two Conferences held between the Church and the Puritan parties, on the subject of Montague's celebrated "Gagger gagged."

Mr. Churton's "History of the Early English Church" (Burns), forms a volume of the Series called "The Englishman's Library." We need not say that, as coming from him, it is a work of much learning and judgment. It contains in a small space a great deal of information which it is difficult otherwise to obtain; and by its candid and temperate tone will do good service by disposing ecclesiastical students to more catholic views of theology.

Mr. Selwyn has continued his "Attempt to Investigate the true Principles of Cathedral Reform" (Parker), in a Second Part, which we hardly like to notice in this brief way, but which his name will recommend too powerfully to need any other.

"The Old Paths," by the Reverend J. B. Pratt, of Cruden (Rivingtons), is a Treatise on the Notes of the Church, in defence of what the author not very happily calls "the Protestant Episcopal" or "Protestant Catholic Church," meaning by "Protestant," "true, primitive, or apostolic."—p. 209. It is a learned, careful, and instructive work, though we do not agree with all the author says concerning the Church of Rome.

We cordially recommend Mr. A. Acland's "Liturgia Domestica, or Morning and Evening Services for the Use of Families" (Rivingtons). It is far the {260} most systematic work of the kind which has appeared, and cannot, we feel sure, be used without tending, through God's blessing, to form the minds of those who use it upon a Catholic model of devotion. It contains a great deal in a short compass.

We are glad to see a reprint of Bishop Jolly's Treatise on "Baptismal Regeneration" (Burns). It forms one of a series, which we like altogether, except its motto, "Evangelic Truth and Apostolic Order."

In "Outlines of Church history" (Seeley and Burnside), we have a proof of the growing interest in ecclesiastical history in the least promising quarter. It is a mildly written work, following the general hypothesis attempted by Milner, that Athanasius and Basil go off into the Paulicians and Protestants in essence, and into the Papacy in accidents.

We have read with pleasure Mr. Skinner's excellent Letter to Lord Uxbridge, on the Observance of Lent (Burns), occasioned by recent occurrences. These occurrences will have conferred on the Church a benefit, as others of a similar nature have done before them, if they elicit such reflections and such protests from Churchmen.

The Reverend G. A. Poole, of Leeds, has published an excellent pamphlet (Burns) on "The Anglo-catholic use of Two Lights upon the Altar," which demands an answer from those who find fault with the observance.

Mr. Mac Neile has succeeded Dr. Chalmers in what he considers the "chair" (p. 7) of Lecturer to the Christian Influence Society. He proposes in his Lectures, which have been published (Hatchard), to prove that " our venerated Church Establishment" (p. vii), which he calls "Cranmerism" (p. 264), is not only an instrument of popular instruction, "the most economical, and in every practical point of view safest and most efficient" (p. 2), but that it is "scriptural" (p. 5). The author goes through a number of important subjects, such as the power of the keys and the indefectibility of the Church. On the whole, however, the book seems to us flat, though there is a good deal of bustle in it; but this may be because we do not agree with it.

Bishop Doane, of New Jersey, has given in a funeral sermon a very full and touching account of Mr. Winslow, the assistant to his lordship in the rectory of St. Mary's.

Mr. Craufurd's Sermons (Duncan and Malcolm) are published with a view of "augmenting the funds raised for the purpose of re-building the author's parish Church, and erecting a new Church in a distant part of the parish." They contain far more matter and thought than is usual in parish Sermons; we are nut always satisfied with the style or the quotations.

"Clark's Plain Sermons'' (Hatchard) are the animated and pleasing compositions {261} of a young man. They are on general subjects. Some things in them we could have wished otherwise.

The best recommendation of "Sermons by the Reverend H. Jelly" (Rivingtons) is, that they are unlike the common run of sermons. They are plain and simple, and discuss a number of important subjects.

Two Sermons have been published by Mr. Oakeley, on the Dignity and Claims of the Suffering Poor (Burns), which should be read in connection with the Article in this Number of our Review.

Mr. Walker's Sermon on the "Way which they call heresy" (Richardson, Newcastle), is a manly defence of Gospel truth against the Puritanism and Erastianism of the age.

Many of our readers will be glad to be told of an edition of the Psalter (Burns), pointed for chanting. It is small and cheap, and includes the hymns, canticles, &c.

We have been favoured with a sight of a very interesting collection of "Prolusiones Literarię," recited this year in St. Paul's School. We have seldom read a little work of the sort which has so pleased us.

Two Letters (Rivingtons) have been addressed, in a pleasing and conciliatory spirit, to Dr. Hook and Dr. Shuttleworth respectively, on the subject of a late work of the latter divine, by a Churchman, and a Friend of Unity.

"Gatherings," by the Author of the "Listener" (Seeley and Burnside), is a work of more merit than we had expected from the last and only publication of the author or authoress which we have fallen in with, "the Listener in Oxford." We do not mean, however, that we agree with every sentiment expressed in it.

The Reverend G. Sandford has addressed a Letter to Mr. Spencer on the subject of his conversion to Romanism, in a style which unites the gentleness and earnestness appropriate, but rarely found in the controversy to which it belongs.


We have received a letter from Mr. Ward, courteous and friendly as regards ourselves, but strongly remonstrating with us about a portion of our article on his Translation of the Magdalen Statutes. We can say most sincerely that we intended him no pain except what is inseparable on all hands from differences of opinion on an important subject, and such as he would be a party to inflicting as well as undergoing. His principal charge is, that we have accused him of publishing the Statutes in question against the will of the Founder, as declared in those Statutes, whereas they do but prohibit the publication of the {262} Evidences, i.e. title-deeds and similar documents; and further, that in order to make this appear, we have unfairly quoted only a portion of the sentence as it stands in the Statutes, and supplied a termination of our own favourable to our opinion, and contrary to their real sense. Mr. Ward supports his construction by various collateral considerations.

Such is the substance of Mr. Ward's complaint; to which we reply, that as we have reason to believe that Mr. Ward's construction of the passage is wrong in point of law, a belief which has been confirmed by the opinion of lawyers who have been consulted in the matter, we cannot honestly retract, and can but repeat our own statement, which he resists, that the word "Evidences" does include the Statutes. So much, however, we will grant, that the passage may admit of Mr. Ward's interpretation, and therefore, as far as our charge against him of inconsistency rests on this passage, and not on other considerations which were introduced into our Review, he certainly is not open to it. So far then we are ready to express our regret at what we have said, and we cheerfully unsay it. We are grieved, however, to find that Mr. Ward supposes that we accused him, not merely of an inconsistency, but of a moral offence, or crime, in publishing what the Founder wished concealed. We assure him with great sincerity that no such intention ever crossed our minds; and we have pleasure in thus setting ourselves right with any persons who so understood us. We know too much of Mr. Ward to suspect it, and if he knew the writer of the article in question as well, he would be as slow to impute to him what was uncourteous or inconsiderate, as himself intentionally to commit it.

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