Imagens das páginas

fidious priests had any disgraceful orders Nevertheless, there was no beart so bold to communicate, they never failed to per- as not to tremble, when the pilgrims were vert, for this purpose, some passages of encamped under their walls ; " and so the holy Scriptures; one would say that great was the assemblage both of tents they had only studied the Bible to make and pavilions, that it appeared as if all sacrilegious applications of it.

the world was collected there ; at which " All the fanatics whom the preachings those of the city began to be greatly of the monks of Citeaux had engaged to astonished, for they thought they were derote themselves to the sacred war be. only fables, what their bisbop had come gan to more in the spring of the year to tell them, and advise them.'' 1209. The indulgences of the crusade "The citizens of Beziers, though astohad been offered to them on the lowest nished, were not discouraged : whilst their terms; they were required to make & enemies were still occupied in tracing campaign of only forty days, (to which their camp, they made a sally, and atthe greater part of the vassals were obliged tacked them at unawares. But the cruby the service of their fiefs,) in exchange saders were still more terrible, compared for eternal salvation. The shorter the with the inbabitants of the south, by their service was, the better it suited the neigh- fanaticism and boldness, than by their bouring provinces.

numbers. The infantry alone sufficed to “It was, in fact, principally amongst repulse the citizens with great loss. At the near neighhours of the Albigenses, this instant, all the battalions of the be. that the Bernardins found means to draw siegers, precipitating themselves upon after their nearly the whole population. them at the same time, pursued them so Some' authors have spoken of three hun. eagerly that they entered the gates with dred, or even of five hundred thousand pil. them, and found themselves masters of grims or crusaders, who precipitated thein. the city before they had even formed their selves upon Languedoc; the abbot of plan of attack. The knights, learning that, Vaux Cernay reckons but fifty thousand they had triumphed without fighting, inin this first campaigu, and the smallest quired of the legate, Arnold Amalric, number is the most probable, especially abbot of Citeaux, how they should distinin that age when very numerous armies guish the Catholics from the heretics, who were so seldom seen. 'We must not, bow. made them this much celebrated reply: ever, include in this calculation the igno. ' Kill them all; the Lord will know well rant and fapatical multitude which fol- those who are his.' lowed each preacher, armed with scythes “ The fixed population of Beziers did and clubs, and promised to themselves not, perhaps, exceed fifteen thousand- perthat if they were not in condition to com sons; but all the inhabitants of the coun. bat the knights of Languedoc, they might, try, of the open villages, and of the castles at least, be able to murder the women which had not been judged capable of and children of the heretics."-pp. 27–29. defence, had taken refuge in this city,

which was regarded as exceedingly strong ; After various movements in their

and even those who had remained to route of extermination, the crusa- guard the strong castles, had, for the ders approached the city of Beziers. most part, sent their wives and children The Catholic prelate, after having

to Beziers. This whole multitude, at the

moment when the crusaders became mas. visited the legate, delivered to him a

ters of the gates, took refuge in the list of those amongst his flock, whom churches; the great catbedral of Saint he suspected of heresy, and whom Nicaise contained the greater number; he wished to see consigned to the

the canons, clothed with their choral

habits, surrounded the altar, and sounded flames. He then returned to the the bells as if to express their prayers to city, and represented to the people the furious assailants; but these supplithe dangers to which they were cations of brass were as little beard as exposed, and exhorted them to thos

to those of the human voice. The bells

ceased not to sound, till, of that immense surrender their fellow-citizens to

multitude, which had taken refuge in the the avengers of the faith! Their church, the last had been massacred. answer was worthy of their he Neither were those spared who bad sought roism.

an asylum in the other churches; seven

thousand dead bodies were counted in "" Tell the legate,' replied the citizens, that of the Magdalen alone. When the whom he bad assembled in the cathedral crusaders had massacred the last living of St. Nicaise, that our city is good and creature in Beziers, and had pillaged the strong, that our Lord will not fail to suc- houses of all that they thought worth cour us in our great necessities, and that, carrying off, they set fire to the city, in rather than commit the baseness demanded every part at once, and reduced it to a of us, we would eat our own children,' vast funeral pile. Not a house remained

standing, not one human being alive. of an argument proving the intole. Historians differ as to the number of r

rance of popery, than to declaim victims. The abbot of Citeaux, feeling

The some shame for the butchery which he about political contentions. had ordered, in his letter to Innocent III. fact is, that things secular are made reduces it to fifteen thousand, others sacred, and things sacred are made make it amount to sixty.”-pp. 34-37. secular by the Church of Rome,

We could with pleasure increase as will best serve the purposes of the number of our citations from its ambition or its policy. The this interesting volume ; and were throne of Cæsar, and the throne of it not impossible to present a more God, are alike invaded by their condensed account of its principal artifices, and usurped by their predetails, we would exhibit an ab- sumption! Who can read the acstract of the entire history. But counts given so temperately and this is unnecessary, as we are per- judiciously, in the history before us, suaded, after these passages, few. and not perceive, that the extirpareaders will deny themselves the tion of heresy, and the promotion pleasure and profit of perusing of the interests of the Romish the volume. We had marked Church, were the intended objects some passages, no less illustrative of all their arrangements ? The of the principles and policy of the elements of the Reformation exChurch of Rome than the preced- isted in the principles and fellowing; especially the account of the ship of the persecuted churches; siege of the castle of Minerva, by and to suppress this rising spirit, Simon de Montfort, and some and prevent its interference with other exploits of equally imperish- the dominion of the papal hieable infamy, by the same agents rarchy, was the contemplated, and, of ecclesiastical domination. But for a season, the successful rewe shall close our article by a few sult of their cruelties. Nothing observations.

but the operation of the spirit proFrom the history before us, it duced by these principles can acis evident, that no reference to count for the tone of exultation causes merely political in their with which the historians of those character, can account for the nu- crusades relate the various instances merous atrocities committed under of their success. No sympathy is the name of crusades, against the evinced ; all natural feelings are peaceable and unoffending Albi- proscribed; devotion is made subgenses. In the state of society servient to the work of carnage; then existing, there were, no doubt, and the God of mercy is lauded displayed all the collisions and for the triumph of intolerance and interests which arose out of the the damnation of men! Sed hæc feudal system ; and personal re- . hactenus. sentments and party feeling had We need not inform our readers. their full operation. So it always that the volume before us is entiwas, and always will be, when in- tled to our warmest commendation. tolerance is rampant, and bad men The translator has given it the inunite, under any pretext, to sup- terest and attraction of an original press and persecute men for real work, by the fidelity and excelor supposed errors ! But in all lence of his version; and his introthe instances before us, it was ductory essay is well adapted to their religion alone, which was the prepare the reader for a profitable exciting and the alleged cause of and advantageous perusal of the the sufferings and the severities to history. We have indeed no doubt, which they were exposed. Nos that on many points connected thing is more disingenuous, or more with the principles of Protestandishonest, than to evade the force tism, and the claims of religious liberty, he may differ from the trial, that no human theory of fucelebrated author of the work; and ture events, though founded upon on some subjects, we have the inspired prophecies, can either fullest conviction, that his views possess certainty, or carry authoare more enlightened, and his sen- rity; and that such interpretations timents more scriptural. We can can neither be made to bear upon not record a higher testimony to the general subject of the Christian the merit of the translation, than evidence, or the legitimate edificato say, that it is in every respect tion of the church, we should worthy of such a historian as neither have introduced this volume Sismondi.

to the attention of our readers, nor have taken the trouble ourselves

to cut open its pages, nor read Discourses on Prophecy, in which

noprecy, in which them even once through, much less are considered its Structure, Use, a second and a third time, as we and Inspiration : being the Sub- have done a great portion of it, if stance of Twelve Sermons preached it had belonged to that class of in the Chapel of Lincoln's Inn, works, which we have ventured so in the Lecture founded by the unreservedly to discountenance. Right Rev. W. Warburton, &c. But we feel unqualified satisfacJohn Davison, B. D. &c. &c. tion in being able to introduce Mr. Second Edition. 158.

Davison's work to our readers, as The very sound of “ Discourses eminently fitted to redeem proon Prophecy,” will excite in many phetic inspiration from that vague of our more grave and judicious and Protean character which it readers, a sensation analogous to has assumed in the hands of its that with which they have some- soi-disant interpreters. Though we times listened to a gossip's dream, believe little good has resulted to or a maniac's ravings. The subject the cause of Christianity from human has of late been so disguised and attempts to draw aside the mystic disgraced, and, indeed, by all who veil, yet the task of vindicating have attempted to decypher the the divine authority of the proprophetic hieroglyphics, has been phets, and of subjecting the whole so warped to systematizing, so over- stream of prophetic illumination laid by favourite theories of the to the scrutiny of a sober and enmost adverse construction, and in lightened criticism, is worthy of fact, so addled in the hatching, as the Christian divine, and adapted utterly to nauseate the sober part materially to promote the cause of of the Christian public. We con- inspired truth." fess, that when first the title of this The work before us is, in our volume caught our eye, we thought view, just such a production upon only of the addition of another the prophecies, as every enlightened name to the list of operose and Christian would be glad to see. It otiose, speculators upon the vi- neither attempts to prophesy upon sions of the future-we thought of the page of inspiration, nor in any Bicheno, Faber, Cunningham, way to presume that it can foresee Frére, and last of all, and least of the intentions of the Almighty, or all, in the qualities essential to disclose “ the times and the seasound interpretation, we thought sons, which the Father hath put of Irving; and we had well nigh in his own power;" but its sole laid aside the volume, under a sense object is to vindicate the inspiraof painful regret at the time we tion, to ascertain the import, and had already sacrificed to specula- to exhibit the uses of prophecy from tions of this sort. Thoroughly satis- the earliest times. Of the acutefied, by having grown grey in the ness, discrimination, and sacred

erudition displayed throughout the scendants of Ishmael, and the sucwork, it is impossible to speak in cession of the four ancient emterms of too great emphasis. The pires. effort of the author has been di- The general arrangement is perrected to a vindication of the divine haps the most simple and judiwisdom and prescience, by exhibit- cious that could have been deing a complete scheme of the con- vised; and it is filled up in every nexion which subsists through the part with very eminent ability. whole of prophecy, and by parti- The work, however, requires to be cularly marking out the collateral read as a whole, to perceive the streams of evangelical and of tem- discrimination and sound judgment poral promise. And bating some of the author in the distribution minor points, to which we may and execution of the several parts. hereafter make exception, we must All we can do by way of assisting say, we know of no work on this the reader to judge of the qualities difficult and comprehensive subject, of the work, must be to present a which affords the reader so dis- few specimens. We shall first of tinct an insight into these mys- all cite the concluding passages of teries of God, nor presents so com- his introductory discourse, which plete and unanswerable a vindica- is devoted to a consideration of the tion of the divine authority of connexion between prophecy and the prophecy, viewed as one of the other evidences of revealed relileading testimonies to revelation. gion.

The two first discourses are designed to prepare the way for the “ Before an audience, * many of whom main snbject; and they contain a

are highly exercised in the application of

their minds to a complex evidence, and mass of very important and just to the decision of great interests dependobservations, all tending to remove ing upon it, where nothing but a complete difficulties and illumine the path conviction will satisfy, I speak with subto the general discussion. At the

mission to their judgment, but with no

fear of that judgment making against me, third discourse, we enter upon the

when I appeal to them, whether they have proposed subject. Four discourses not had occasion to know how conviction are then devoted, first, to a survey is improved by converging reasons, and of prophecy, from the fall to the

the more so as those reasons arise from patriarchal times; then

considerations differing in kind : how the contem

succession of new matter of proof, even porary with the promulgation of light itself, reduces any supposed uncer: the law-then from Samuel to tainty left in the earlier stage of the inMalachi, subdivided into the period quiry; how the contingency of er or is

gradually excluded by checks upon the

first conclusion, and the conspiring proSolomon to its final cessation. babilities of a subject run together into The seventh discourse is devoted a perfect conviction. Let this reasonable to the consideration of the Divine process be applied to the examination of foreknowledge, and its union with

Christianity, by men who challenge it to

the proof; and I will not say, it, but they, the liberty of human actions. Then have every thing to hope from the trial. follow four discourses upon the ." There is one quality or condition inspiration of prophecy. "I'he first comprehended in these mixed and various upon the criterion of prophetic

pronhotin evidences of our religion, which deserves

lon: . prophetic to be further considered by itself, a coninspiration-proof of it in the pre- dition highly characteristic of its truth, dictions concerning Christianity- and indeed replete with the strongest conpredictions concerning the Jewish firmation of it. The condition is this, people--predictions concerning the

thin that its evidences are so exceedingly disgreat apostacy-predictions on the subject of pagan kingdoms, Ni

* The reader will bear in mind, that the

discourses were delivered at the Warbnr, neyeh, Babylon, Tyre, and Egypt tonian Lecture, in Lincoln's Inn Chapel.-predictions concerning the de. Ev.

similar in their several descriptions. They standing alone. I assert this, on the conare not necessarily connected in their cession of those who have exalted it, beorigin; they are independent in their side their intention, by the impotent comprinciple; they do not infer each the parisons through which they have thought other; they are connected only in the to slander and traduce it. For what bas subject which they conspire to attest. been done ? Ils miracles have been forced This independence of the component mem into a sort of parallel with some wild bers of this argument is a material consi- unauthenticated relations in the cloudy deration. Perhaps it has not been urged - romance of a pagan sophist, (in the case in the defences of Christianity, with the of Apollonius Tyaneus;) or with the force it is entitled to. It affords, how. vague and insulated pretences of a better ever, a very decisive criterion of truth, bistory, (in the case of Vespasian,) or the as the following remarks may serve 10 mask of a detected and defeated' impos. show.

ture among a Roman Catholic sect. Its “If man's contrivance, or if the fa- prophecies have undergone the violence of vour of accident, could have given to a similar comparison with the oracles of Christianity any of its apparent testimo- heathenism, long ago put to silence, or nies ; either its miracles or its prophecies, the legends of a more recent superstition. its morals or its propagation, or, if I may Its divine morals have been represented as 80 speak, its Founder, there could be no little better than might be derived from room to believe, nor even to imagine, that the philosophy of a Grecian or an Eastern all these appearances of great credibility teacher, Socrates or Confucius. Its woncould be united together by any such derful progress and propagation, carried causes. If a successful craft could have without any of the instruments of human contrived its public miracles, or so much power, and in opposition to them, bave as the pretence of them, it required ano. been matched with the success of the ther reach of craft and new resources to Mahometan heresy, effected by the power provide and adapt its prophecies to the of the sword. Thus all ages, and counsame object. Further, it demanded not tries, and creeds, have been explored with only a different art, but a totally opposite an industry greater than the success, to character, to conceive and promulgate its furnish the separate materials of such admirable morals. Again, the achieve. comparisons as the objectors have been ment of its propagation, in defiance of the able to produce : whilst the conspicuous power and terrors of the world, implied a and uncontested fact, that Christianity new energy of personal genius, and other unites within itself the signs and indicaqualities of action, than any coñcurring in tions which no other system, philosopbic the work before. Lastly, the model of or religious, does, nor is pretended to do, the life of its Founder in the very descrip- leaves it in possession of a character tion of it, is a work of so much origin which repels the indignity of all comparinality and wisdom, as could be the off son, by the distant and incommensurate spring only of consummate powers of in- pretensions of the things attempted to be vention. Though to speak more fairly put in resemblance with it."-pp. 30–34. to the case, it seems, by any intuitive evidence, as if it could never have been These remarks appear to us exeven devised, but must have come from ceedingly judicious and weighty. the life and reality of some perfect ex. cellence of virtue, impossible to be taken If calmly considered by unbelievers, from, or confounded with, the fictious of they can hardly fail to procure for ingenuity. But the hypothesis sinks under Christianity a verdict of complete its incredibility. For each of these sup

sup- and warm approbation.
and warm probation The'font

The fact positions of contrivance being arbitrary, as it certainly is, and unsupported, the

the has certainly been too much overclimax of these is an extravagance. And looked by the advocates of reveif the imbecility of art is foiled in the lation, and although not entirely hypothesis, the combinations of accident neglected for we very well romom

ident neglected, for we very well rememare too vain to be thought of. The genuine state of the Christian evidence is per to nave seen it glanced at by this : there is unambiguous testimony to several writers, yet we never reits works of miraculous power; there are member to have seen it so comoracles of prophecy; there are other dis- prohonsively and forcible.

er dis, prehensively and forcibly stated as tinct marks and signs of a divine original within it. And no stock but that of truth by Mr. Davisou.

h by Mr. Davison. It has been the could, in one subject, produce them all, practice of infidel authors, even of or can now account for their existence. the first respectability, to view this Christian evidence unquestionably has no

great argument, not in its aggregate, thing like it. nor approaching to it in the but in some detached section, and annals of the world. It is a plienomenon generally that one which to them has


« AnteriorContinuar »