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ment, without labor, without cost, and without risk, out of the use of a thing that does not fructify."
Even as late as 1789 the laws of France forbade the taking of interest. In the year 1745, in a last effort to stem the tendency of the times, Pope Benedict XIV wrote: "That kind of sin which is called usury, and which has its proper seat and place in the contract of mutuum (i. e. loan for a definite period), consists in turning that contract, which of its own nature requires the amount returned exactly to balance the amount received, into a ground for demanding a return in excess of the amount received."
But already the general practice of mankind had outstripped the dogmatic utterances of religion and the formal permissions of legislatures. Before the close of the sixteenth century the changed conditions of the world in western Europe had brought out the possibilities of money into a new light. Discovery, invention, commerce, and other enterprises were creating a market value for money, and men were beginning to take a chance by outfitting an adventurous trader here and a poor but honest manufacturer there on the promise of a multiplied return. John Calvin, fierce reformer, approved of the break with tradition and in spite of the opposition of Luther and Melancthon, made a distinction between "interest" and "usury" which salved consciences then and has lasted until our own day. In the eighteenth century Scipio Maffei wrote his Dell' impiego del danaro which had a great effect in changing the ecclesiastical attitude, and in 1830 Pius VIII decided-what the rest of the world had already known-that those who considered the taking of interest allowed by state law justifiable, were "not to be disturbed." The Bank of Amsterdam had been running since 1609 and the Bank of England since 1694.
Thus it came about that the taking of interest from being regarded as a sin arrived at eminent respectability. The Roman Catholic Church, following John Calvin (!), saved its face by making a distinction between "interest" and "usury."
"The laws of conscience," said Montaigne, "which we pretend to be derived from nature, proceed from custom."
While land is purchasable, commerce safe, trade active, communication swift, inventions lucrative, manufacturing and mining developed, population dense, travel secure, robbers restrained, and men trustworthy, people will save money for the sake of investment by virtue of what is after all rather a natural law than a mere custom. No amount of Uplift piffle or Utopian talk will affect the tendency. The Middle Ages, like Russia today, had none of these conditions, and consequently money then could only be used for exchange or to hoard.
If the cry of Proudhon, "Property is theft," caught up by a million wild Bolsheviki, prevails, then the stable conditions of civilization will be shaken and time will rush back a thousand years. Interest will again become immoral because it will be impossible.
Property is not theft; it is the legitimate fruit of abstinence and self-denial. This is a truth which the Church ought to affirm more actively.
The Implications of an Ancient Rhyme
BY THE REV. HENRY S. WHITEHEAD, M.A.
HERE is always a certain element of truth in proverbs or similar sayings because these are statements of crystallized opinion, and an opinion held so widely as to result in a proverb is extremely likely to be near the centre of things. Such a statement is that rather thin, doggerel triplet which attempts to summarize the characteristics of the three traditional Anglican schools of churchmanship:
"High and crazy;
That brilliant oddity, Ronald A. Hilary Knox, ex-priest of the Church of England, and now of the papal obedience, in an article written for the Dublin Review shortly after his secession, in the summer of 1918, pointed out that there are, actually, no less than seven varieties of Anglican churchmanship. As we gaze about us and take thought, we can hardly help finding that Knox erred on the side of conservatism. We wonder why, if he were going to apply his firework mind to a critical summarizing of the Anglican schools of thought, he should have stopped at expanding the traditional number three into the mystical number seven. We cannot help thinking that such limitation is altogether too conservative; but healthful reaction brings us, like a bee to the landing-board to the conclusion that, generally speaking there are three, and just three such schools, and that the triplet lines ending in "azy" describe them pretty well. Really deep thought will be likely to confirm this view.
Now there are certain dangers in telling the naked truth, as everyone knows. And these dangers are not limited to the social errors involved, nor to the apparent absurdities which this unfortunate habit so frequently lands one in. There are the subtler dangers, such as are being so constantly braved by an incurable truth-teller like Mr. Chesterton: the danger of being thought a purveyor of comic articles; the danger of not being taken seriously; the danger of being considered insincere; the great danger of degenerating in the public mind, into a dealer in paradoxes, for it is not until one gets down to an apparent contradiction (as that great teacher Brooke Foss Westcott used to warn his pupils), that you can be reasonably certain of being on the right track.
Even a clever essayist like Mr. Chesterton loses heavily because the reading public - - even essay readers can be quite readily shocked and surprised by the appearance of naked truth. Therefore a clumsy person must make his attempt at telling the truth with a foregone certainty that his excursion into that fantastic realm where things are stated as they are, will be over a stony road.
It seems to the writer that the words crazy, lazy, and hazy do pretty well describe the internal situation with which we have to deal in that portion of the Holy Catholic Church legally described as the Protestant Episcopal Church in the United States of America. Probably everyone who has ever heard this simple rhyme was at once impressed with the fact that it did describe the three kinds of churchmanship. Probably every reader will agree with the writer that the author of this jingle was a person of insight who knew what was apt and what was meet. So far, good. But to look ahead and face the results of applying these tests of character, crazy, lazy, and hazy, in a seri
ous and truthful way-ah! that is a horse of another color. We begin, then, with the high and crazy. Crazy here, obviously means not so much lop-sided, as in "crazy quilt," or as the word would be applied to a scarecrow with its inherent lack of symmetry, or to a very old house which has wilted and fallen out of plumb so as to present many irregular angularities, as it does demented, possessed, queer in the head. The plain intention of the author of the line of verse is that High churchmen are not queer in their angles or physical postures, but queer in their relation to what approximated the established order in the days when these lines were given to the world. In other words, a High churchman is a kind of fanatic. This is true, and may all who are denominated High thank God devoutly for it! The High churchman is, plainly, a different kind of churchman from his lazy and hazy fellow Anglicans. He goes at the things concerned in churchmanship-his worship particularly-in a manner which is unusual and hence comic. Therefore he is crazy. He does not jog along in the cutand-dried, traditional Anglicanism of the eighteenth century; he desires a restoration to the activities and practices of an era which was not cut-and-dried, and as this appears new and strange, the High churchman, who for some inexplicable reason likes it that way, is crazy. He rakes up a number of usages which it would be much less trouble to let alone, and when he has them resurrected and in working order they resemble somewhat, on the surface, the outward and visible performances of those irrational and inexplicable Romanists, and clearly he is crazy. He breaks away from the worship of a comfortable, good-natured deity, who has grown rather sleepy, and who is perfectly satisfied, of course, with the old cut-and-dried mumble of services, and the old, easy-going semi-disregard of himself,