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feelings to their duty." And this was the king who wished to have all men of all sects rendered alike capable of holding office. These proceedings were alone sufficient to take away all credit from his liberal professions; and such, as we learn from the despatches of the Papal Nuncio, was really the effect. "Pare," says D'Adda, writing a few days after the retirement of Rochester, "pare che gli animi soni inaspriti della voce che corre tra il popolo, d'esser cacciato il detto ministro per non essere Cattolico, percio tirarsi al estermino dé Protestanti." Was it ever denied that the favours of the crown were constantly bestowed and withheld purely on account of the religious opinions of the claimants? And if these things were done in the green tree, what would have been done in the dry? If James acted thus when he had the strongest motives to court his Protestant subjects, what course was he likely to follow when he had obtained from them all that he asked?
Who again was his closest ally? And what was the policy of that ally? The subjects of James, it is true, did not know half the infamy of their sovereign. They did not know, as we know, that while he was lecturing them on the blessings of equal toleration, he was constantly congratulating his good brother Louis on the success of that intolerant policy which had turned the fairest tracts of France into deserts, and driven into exile myriads of the most peaceable, industrious, and skilful artisans in the world. But the English did know that the two princes were bound together in the closest union. They saw their sovereign, with toleration on his lips, separating himself from those states which had first set the example of toleration, and connecting himself by the strongest ties with the most faithless and merciless persecutor who could then be found on any continental throne.
ever been engaged, had called in the aid either of the magistrate or of the assassin, should have become as thorough-going friends to religious liberty as Dr. Franklin or Mr. Jefferson afterwards were,-or, that a Jesuit-ridden bigot should be induced to dissemble for the good of the church?
The game which the Jesuits were playing was no new game. A hundred years before, they had preached up political freedom, just as they were now preaching up religious freedom. They had tried to raise the republicans against Henry the Fourth and Elizabeth, just as they were now trying to raise the Protestant Dissenters against the Church Establishment. In the sixteenth century, the tools of Philip the Second were constantly teaching doctrines that bordered on Jacobinism,-constantly insisting on the right of the people to cashier kings, and of every private citizen to plunge his dagger in the heart of a wicked ruler. In the seventeenth century, the persecutors of the Hugue nots were crying out against the tyranny of the Established Church of England, and vindicating with the utmost fervour the right of all men to adore God after their own fashion. In both cases they were alike insincere. In both cases the fool who had trusted them would have found himself miserably duped. A good and wise man would doubtless disapprove of the arbitrary measures of Elizabeth. But would he have really served the interests of political liberty, if he had put faith in the professions of the Romish casuists, joined their party, and taken a share in Northumberland's revolt, or in Babington's conspiracy? Would he not have been assisting to establish a far worse and more loathsome tyranny than that which he was trying to put down? In the same manner, a good and wise man would doubtless see very much to condemn in the conduct of the Church of England under the Stuarts. But was he therefore to join the king and the Catholics against that Church? And was it not plain, that, by so doing, he would assist in setting up a spiritual despotism, compared with which the despotism of the establishment was as a little finger to the loins,-as chastisement with whips to chastisement with scorpions ?
By what advice again was James guided? Who were the persons in whom he placed the greatest confidence, and who took the warmest interest in his schemes? The ambassador of France, the nuncio of Rome,-and Father Petre the Jesuit. These were the people who showed the greatest anxiety that the king's plan might succeed. And is not this enough to prove Louis had a far stronger mind than James. that the establishment of equal toleration was He had at least an equally high sense of honour. not that plan? Was Louis for toleration? Was He was in a much less degree the slave of his the Vatican for toleration? Was the order of priests. He had promised to respect the edict Jesuits for toleration? We know that the li- of Nantes as solemnly as ever James had proberal professions of James were highly ap-mised to respect the religious liberty of the proved by those very governments, by those English people. Had Louis kept his word! very societies, whose theory and practice it no- And was not one such instance of treachery toriously was to keep no faith with heretics, enough for one generation? and to give no quarter to heretics. And are we, in order to save James's reputation for sincerity, to believe that all at once those governments and those societies had changed their nature, had discovered the criminality of all their former conduct,-had adopted principles far more liberal than those of Locke, of Leigh-fices. We have seen it employed a hundred ton, or of Tillotson? Which is the more pro- times within our own memory. At this mo bable supposition,-that the king who had re- ment we see the Carlists in France hallooing voked the edict of Nantes, the pope under on the "extreme left" against the "centre left." whose sanction the Inquisition was then im- Four years ago the same trick was practised prisoning and burning, the religious order in England. We have heard old buyers and which, in every controversy in which it had sellers of boroughs,--men who had been seated
The plan of James seems to us perfectly in telligible. The toleration, which, with the concurrence and applause of all the most cruel persecutors in Europe, he was offering to his people, was meant simply to divide them. This is the most obvious and vulgar of political arti
in the House of Commons by the unsparing ase of ejectments, and who had, through their whole lives, opposed every measure which tended to increase the power of the democracy, -abusing the Reform Bill as not democratic enough, appealing to the labouring classes, execrating the tyranny of the ten-pound householders, and exchanging compliments and caresses with the most noted incendiaries of our times. The cry of universal toleration was employed by James just as the cry of universal suffrage was lately employed by some veteran Tories. The object of the mock democrats of our time was to produce a conflict between the middle classes and the multitude, and thus to prevent all reform. The object of James was to produce a conflict between the Church and the Protestant Dissenters, and thus to facilitate the victory of the Catholics over both. We do not believe that he could have suc-lutely dependent on the crown. We cannot ceeded. But we do not think his plan so ut- think it altogether impossible that a housé terly frantic and hopeless as it has generally might have been packed which would have re been thought; and we are sure that, if he had stored the days of Mary. been allowed to gain his first point, the people would have had no remedy left but an appeal to physical force,--an appeal, too, which would have been made under the most unfavourable circumstances. He conceived that the Tories, hampered by their professions of passive obedience, would have submitted to his pleasure; and that the Dissenters, seduced by his delusive promises of relief, would have given him strenuous support. In this way he hoped to obtain a law, nominally for the removal of all religious disabilities, but really for the excluding of all Protestants from all offices. It is never to be forgotten, that a prince who has all the patronage of the state in his hands can, without violating the letter of the law, establish what ever test he chooses. And, from the whole conduct of James, we have not the smallest doubt that he would have availed himself of his But James was stopped at the outset. He The statute-book might power to the utmost. declare all Englishmen equally capable of hold- thought himself secure of the Tories, because ing office; but to what end, if all offices were they professed to consider all resistance as sin. in the gift of a sovereign resolved not to em- ful-and of the Protestant Dissenters, because We firmly believe that he offered them relief. He was in the wrong ploy a single heretic? not one post in the government, in the army, as to both. The error into which he fell about in the navy, on the bench, or at the bar--not the Dissenters was very natural. But the con one peerage, nay, not one ecclesiastical bene-fidence which he placed in the loyal assurances fice in the royal gift, would have been bestowed of the High Church party was the most exquion any Protestant of any persuasion. Even sitely ludicrous proof of folly that a politician while the king had still strong motives to dis-ever gave. semble, he had made a Catholic Dean of Christ Church, and a Catholic President of Magdalen College. There seems to be no doubt that the See of York was kept vacant for another Catholic. If James had been suffered to follow this course for twenty years, every military man, from a general to a drummer, every officer of a ship, every judge, every king's council, every lord-lieutenant of a county, every justice of the peace, every ambassador, every minister of state, every person employed in the royal household, in the custom-house, in the post-office, in the excise, would have been a Catholic. The Catholics would have had a majority in the House of Lords, even if that majority had been made, to use Sunderland's phrase, by calling up a whole troop of the Guards to that House. They would have had,
We certainly do not believe that this would have been tamely borne. But we do believe that, if the nation had been deluded by the king's professions of toleration, all this would have been attempted, and could have been averted only by a most bloody and destruc tive contest, in which the whole Protestant population would have been opposed to the But on the Catholics. On the one side would have been a vast numerical superiority. other side would have been the whole organi zation of government, and two great disciplined armies, that of James and that of Louis. We do not doubt that the nation would have achieved its deliverance. But we believe that the struggle would have shaken the whole fa bric of society, and that the vengeance of the conquerors would have been terrible and un sparing.
we believe, the chief weight even in the Convo cation. Every bishop, every dean, every holder of a crown living, every head of every college which was subject to the royal power, would have belonged to the Church of Rome. Almost all the places of liberal education would have been under the direction of Catholics. The whole power of licensing books would have been in the hands of Catholics. All this im mense mass of power would have been stea dily supported by the arms and by the gold of France, and would have descended to an heir, whose whole education would have been con ducted with a view to one single end,-the com plete re-establishment of the Catholic religion The House of Commons would have been the only legal obstacle. But the rights of a great portion of the electors were at the mercy of the courts of law, and the courts of law were abso
Only imagine a man acting for one single day on the supposition that all his neighbours believe all that they profess, and act up to what they believe. Imagine a man acting on the supposition, that he may safely offer the deadliest injuries and insults to everybody who says that revenge is sinful; or that he may safely intrust all his property without security to any person, who says that it is wrong to steal. Such a character would be too absurd for the wildest farce. Yet the folly of James did not stop short of this incredible extent. Because the clergy had declared that resistance to oppression was in no case lawful, he con ceived that he might oppress them exactly as much as he chose, without the smallest danger of resistance. He quite forgot that when they magnified the royal prerogative, that preroga
tive was exerted on their side-that when they | vast royal power which three years before had preached endurance, they had nothing to en- seemed immovably fixed, vanished at once dure-that when they declared it unlawful to like chaff in a hurricane. resist evil, none but Whigs and Dissenters suffered any evil. It had never occurred to him that a man feels the calamities of his enemies with one sort of sensibility, and his own with quite a different sort. It had never occurred to him as possible that a reverend divine might think it the duty of Baxter and Bunyan to bear insults, and to lie in dungeons without murmur- The editor of this volume quotes the Decla ing; and yet, when he saw the smallest chance ration of Right, and tells us, that by looking at that his own prebend might be transferred to it, we may "judge at a glance whether the au some sly Father from Italy or Flanders, might thors of the Revolution achieved all they might begin to discover much matter for useful medi- and ought, in their position, to have achieved tation in the texts touching Ehud's knife and whether the Commons of England did their Jael's hammer. His majesty was not aware, duty to their constituents, their country, poste it should seem, that people do sometimes re- rity, and universal freedom." We are at a loss consider their opinions, and that nothing more to imagine how even this writer can have read disposes a man to reconsider his opinions and transcribed the Declaration of Right, and than a suspicion that, if he adheres to them, he yet have so utterly misconceived its nature. is very likely to be a beggar or a martyr. Yet That famous document is, as its very name it seems strange that these truths should have imports, declaratory, and not remedial. It was escaped the royal mind. Those Churchmen never meant to be a measure of reform. It who had signed the Oxford declaration in fa- neither contained, nor was designed to convour of passive obedience had also signed the tain, any allusion to those innovations which the thirty-nine articles. And yet the very man authors of the Revolution considered as desirawho confidently expected that, by a little coax- ble, and which they speedily proceeded to make. ing and bullying, he should induce them to re- The Declaration was merely a recital of certain nounce the articles, was thunderstruck when old and wholesome laws which had been violat he found that they were disposed to softened by the Stuarts; and a solemn protest against down the doctrines of the declaration. Nor the validity of any precedent which might be did it necessarily follow that even if the theory set up in opposition to those laws. The words, of the Tories had undergone no modification, as quoted by the writer himself, ran thus: their practice would coincide with their theory. "They do claim, demaud, and insist upon all It might, one should think, have crossed the and singular the premises as their undoubted mind of a man of fifty, who had seen a great rights and liberties." Before a man begins to deal of the world, that people sometimes do make improvements on his estate, he must what they think wrong. Though a prelate know its boundaries. Before a legislature sits might hold that Paul directs us to obey even down to reform a constitution, it is fit to ascera Nero, it might not, on that account, be perfect- tain what that constitution really is. This was ly safe to treat the Right Reverend Father in all that the declaration intended to do; and to God after the fashion of Nero, in the hope that quarrel with it because it did not directly inhe would continue to obey on the principles troduce any beneficial changes, is to quarrel of Paul. The king indeed had only to look at with meat for not being clothing. home. He was at least as much attached to the Catholic Church as any Tory gentleman or clergyman could be to the Church of England. Adultery was at least as strongly condemned by his Church as resistance by the Church of England. Yet his priests could not keep him from Arabella Sedley. While he was risking his crown for the sake of his soul, he was ing his soul for the sake of an ugly, dirty mistress. There is something delightfully grotesque in the spectacle of a man who, while living in the habitual violation of his own known duties, is unable to believe that any temptation can draw any other person aside from the path of virtue.
The principle on which the authors of the Revolution acted cannot be mistaken. They were perfectly aware that the English institu tions stood in need of reform. But they also knew that an important point was gained if they could settle, once for all, by a solemn compact, the matters which had, during several risk-generations, been in controversy between the Parliament and the crown. They therefore most judiciously abstained from mixing up the irritating and perplexing question of what ought to be the law, with the plain question of what was the law. As to the claims set forth in the Declaration of Right, there was little room for debate. Whigs and Tories were generally agreed as to the legality of the dispensing power, and of taxation imposed by the roya prerogative. The articles were therefore ad justed in a very few days. But if the Parlia ment had determined to revise the whole con stitution, and to provide new securities against misgovernment, before proclaiming the new sovereigns, months would have been lost in disputes. The coalition which had delivered the country would have been instantly dis solved. The Whigs would have quarreled
James was disappointed in all his calculations. His hope was, that the Tories would follow their principles, and that the Nonconformists would follow their interests. Exactly the reverse took place. The Tories sacrificed the principle of non-resistance to their inte rests: the Nonconformists rejected the delusive offers of the king, and stood firmly by their principles. The two parties whose strife had convulsed the empire during half a century. were united for a moment; and all that
The very great length to which this article has already been extended, renders it impossi ble for us to discuss, as we had meant to do, the characters and conduct of the leading Eng lish statesmen at this crisis. But we must offer a few remarks on the spirit and tendency of the Revolution of 1688.
with the Tories, the Lords with the Commons, this-that William would in all things conform the Church with the Dissenters; and all this himself to what should appear to be the fixed storm of conflicting interests and conflicting and deliberate sense of his Parliament. The theories would have been raging round a va- security for the performance was this-that he cant throne. In the mean time, the greatest had no claim to the throne except the choice power on the continent was attacking our al- of Parliament, and no means of maintaining lies, and meditating a descent on our own ter- himself on the throne but the support of Parritories. Dundee was raising the Highlands. liament. All the great and inestimable reThe authority of James was still owned by the forms which speedily followed the Revolution Irish. If the authors of the Revolution had were implied in those simple words,-"The been fools enough to take this course, we have Lords Spiritual and Temporal, and Commons, little doubt that Luxembourg would have been assembled at Westminster, do resolve that upon them in the middle of their constitution- William and Mary, Prince and Princess of making. They might probably have been in- Orange, be, and be declared King and Queen terrupted in a debate on Filmer's and Sydney's of England." theories of government, by the entrance of the musketeers of Louis's household; and have been marched off, two and two, to frame imaginary monarchies and commonwealths in the Tower. We have had in our time abundant experience of the effects of such folly. We have seen nation after nation enslaved, because the friends of liberty wasted on discussions upon abstract points the time which ought to have been employed in preparing for vigorous national defence. The editor, apparently, would have had the English Revolution of 1688 First in the list of the benefits which our end as the Revolutions of Spain and Naples country owes to the Revolution we place the ended in our days. Thank God, our deliverers Toleration Act. It is true that this measure were men of a very different order from the fell short of the wishes of the leading Whigs. Spanish and Neapolitan legislators! They❘ It is true also that, where Catholics were conmight, on many subjects, hold opinions which, cerned, even the most enlightened of the leadin the nineteenth century, would not be con- ing Whigs held opinions by no means so libesidered as liberal; but they were not dreaming|ral as those which are happily common at the pedants. They were statesmen accustomed present day. Those distinguished statesmen to the management of great affairs. Their did, however, make a noble, and, in some replans of reform were not so extensive as those spects, a successful struggle for the rights of of the lawgivers of Cadiz; but what they conscience. Their wish was to bring the great planned, they effected! and what they effected, body of the Protestant Dissenters within the that they maintained against the fiercest hos-pale of the Church, by judicious alterations in tility at home and abroad. the liturgy and the articles; and to grant to Their first object was to seat William on the those who still remained without that pale the throne; and they were right. We say this most ample toleration. They framed a plan without any reference to the eminent personal of comprehension which would have satisfied qualities of William, or to the follies and a great majority of the seceders; and they crimes of James. If the two princes had in- proposed the complete abolition of that absurd terchanged characters, our opinion would have and odious test which, after having been for a still been the same. It was even more neces- century and a half a scandal to the pious, and sary to England at the time that her king a laughing-stock to the profane, was at length should be a usurper than that he should be a removed in our own time. The immense hero. There could be no security for good power of the clergy and of the Tory gentry government without a change of dynasty. The frustrated these excellent designs. The Whigs, reverence for hereditary right and the doctrine however, did much. They succeeded in obof passive obedience had taken such a hold on taining a law, in the provisions of which a the minds of the Tories that, if James had been philosopher will doubtless find much to conrestored to power on any conditions, their at- demn, but which had the practical effect of tachment to him would in all probability have enabling almost every Protestant nonconrevived, as the indignation which recent op- formist to follow the dictates of his own conpression had produced faded from their minds. science without molestation. Scarcely a law It had become indispensable to have a sove- in the statute-book is theoretically more objecreign whose title to his throne was strictly | tionable than the Toleration Act. But we bound up with the title of the nation to its question whether in the whole of that mass of liberties. In the compact between the Prince legislation, from the Great Charter downwards, of Orange and the Convention, there was one there be a single law which has so much dimost important article which, though not ex-minished the sum of human suffering,-which pressed, was perfectly understood by both par- has done so much to allay bad passions,— ties, and for the performance of which the which has put an end to so much petty tyrancountry had securities far better than all the ny and vexation,-which has brought glad Vows that Charles I. or Ferdinand VII. ever ness, peace, and a sense of security to so many took in the day of their weakness, and broke private dwellings. In the day of their power. The article was
The second of those great reforms which the
And what were the reforms of which we speak? We will shortly recount some which we think the most important; and we will then leave our readers to judge whether those who consider the Revolution as a mere change of dynasty, beneficial to a few aristocrats, but useless to the body of the people, or those who consider it as a glorious and happy era in the history of the British nation and of the human species, have judged more correctly of its nature.
Revolution produced was the final establish- settled on him taxes estimated to produce ment of the Presbyterian Kirk in Scotland. £1,200,000 a year. This they thought suffi We shall not now inquire whether the Episco- cient, as they allowed nothing for a standing pal or the Calvinistic form of church govern- army in time of peace. At the time of Charles's ment be more agreeable to primitive practice. | death, the annual produce of these taxes cerFar be it from us to disturb with our doubts tainly exceeded a million and a half; and the the repose of an Oxonian Bachelor of Divinity, king who, during the years which immediately who conceives that the English prelates, with followed his accession, was perpetually in distheir baronies and palaces, their purple and tress, and perpetually asking his Parliaments their fine linen, their mitred carriages and for money, was at last able to keep a considertheir sumptuous tables, are the true successors able body of regular troops without any asand exact resemblances of those ancient bish- sistance from the House of Commons. If his ops who lived by catching fish and mending reign had been as long as that of George the tents. We only say that the Scotch, doubtless Third, he would probably before the close of from their own inveterate stupidity and malice, it have been in the annual receipt of several were not Episcopalians; that they could not millions over and above what the ordinary exbe made Episcopalians; that the whole power penses of the state required; and of those milof government had been in vain employed for lions he would have been as absolutely master the purpose of converting them; that the full- as the king now is of the sum allowed for his est instruction on the mysterious questions of privy-purse. He might have spent them in the Apostolical succession, and the imposition luxury, in corruption, in paying troops to overof hands, had been imparted to them by the awe his people, or in carrying into effect wild very logical process of putting the legs of the schemes of foreign conquest. The authors of students into wooden boots, and driving two or the Revolution applied a remedy to this great more wedges between their knees; that a abuse. They settled on the king, not the fluc course of divinity lectures, of the most edify-tuating produce of certain fixed taxes, but a ing kind, had been given in the Grass-market fixed sum sufficient for the support of his own of Edinburgh; yet that, in spite of all the exer- royal state. They established it as a rule, that tions of those great theological professors, Lau- all the expenses of the army, the navy, and the derdale and Dundee, the Covenanters were as ordnance, should be brought annually under obstinate as ever. The contest between the the review of the House of Commons, and that Scotch nation and the Anglican Church had every sum voted should be applied to the serproduced near thirty years of the most fright- vice specified in the vote. The direct effect of ful misgovernment ever seen in any part of this change was important. The indirect efGreat Britain. If the Revolution had pro- fect has been more important still. From that duced no other effect than that of freeing the time the House of Commons has been reaky Scotch from the yoke of an establishment the paramount power in the state. It has, in which they detested, and giving them one to truth, appointed and removed ministers, dewhich they were attached, it would have been clared war, and concluded peace. No combione of the happiest events in our history. nation of the king and the Lords has ever been able to effect any thing against the Lower House, backed by its constituents. Three or four times, indeed, the sovereign has been able to break the force of an opposition, by dissolv ing the Parliament. But if that experiment should fail, if the people should be of the same mind with their representatives - he would clearly have no course left but to yield, to abdicate, or to fight.
The third great benefit which the country derived from the Revolution was the alteration in the mode of granting the supplies. It had been the practice to settle on every prince, at the commencement of his reign, the produce of certain taxes, which, it was supposed, would yield a sum sufficient to defray the ordinary expenses of government. The distribution of the revenue was left wholly to the sovereign. He might be forced by war, or by his own pro- The next great blessing which we owe to fusion, to ask for an extraordinary grant. But, the Revolution, is the purification of the adif his policy were economical and pacific, he ministration of justice in political cases. of might reign many years without once being the importance of this change, no person can under the necessity of summoning his Parlia- judge who is not well acquainted with the ear ment, or of taking their advice when he had lier volumes of the State Trials. Those vosummoned them. This was not all. The na-lumes are, we do not hesitate to say, the most tural tendency of every society, in which pro- frightful record of baseness and depravity that perty enjoys tolerable security, is to increase is extant in the world. Our hatred is alto in wealth. With the national wealth, the pro-gether turned away from the crimes and the duce of the customs, the excise, and the post- criminals, and directed against the law and its office, would of course increase; and thus it ministers. We see villanies as black as ever might well happen, that taxes which, at the were imputed to any prisoner at any bar, daily beginning of a long reign, were barely suffi- committed on the bench and in the jury-box. cient to support a frugal government in time The worst of the bad acts which brought diзof peace, might, before the end of that reign, credit on the old Parliaments of France,-the enable the sovereign to imitate the extrava- condemnation of Lally, for example, or even gance of Nero or Heliogabalus,—to raise great that of Calas,-may seem praiseworthy when armies to carry on expensive wars. Some- compared with those which follow each other thing of this sort had actually happened under in endless succession, as we turn over that Charles the Second, though his reign lasted huge chronicle of the shame of England. The only twenty-five years. His first Parliament magistrates of Paris and Toulouse were blind