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the Hud commonly denominated "Tu quoque," and we really would feel it hard to decide between them—" Et vitula tu dignus et hie." Of course, an anonymous narrative, veiling its comments under fictitious names, cannot command the same confidence as an authenticated report of a trial in a court of justice; but it is sufficiently manifest that similar systems produce similar results, whether in the Church of England or the Church of Rome. As the writer ingenuously remarks, and we could wish to give all currency to the statement, "leaving a sisterhood is not always the immediate resource of those who find a Sister life very different to what they expected it to be." And she explains at length "why many lived on in misery at Miss Jones's in preference to returning home to another kind of misery which might almost be as hard to bear." These remarks admit of far wider application than she contemplated, or would be willing to assign to them, but there is much serious truth in them, and that of a very painful kind.
The remaining portion of the volume is devoted to the lady's ten years' experience in a Romish convent. As she says in her preface that she had purposed, many years before, to write some such work, it is not improbable that, if she had carried out her original idea somewhat earlier, we might have been favoured with some touching contrast of the calm and blissful life spent in her convent haven,
"Where a saintly anchoress she dwells, Till she exchange for Heaven, that happy ground."
And, to do her justice, she makes the attempt. We are favoured with some few glimpses of the interior of convent life, and some account of the modes of reception into nunneries, with which most persons who take interest in such subjects are tolerably familiar. But, as we have already seen, the author, when in her Protestant state, was what Johnson would have admired, "a good hater;" and, notwithstanding her double baptism, and double confirmation by Bishops and Cardinals, still retains, even in her cloistered shades, a full share of controversial spirit. Ladies, when they enter nunneries, manifestly "Coelum non animum mutant."
She has of course parted company with "poor Miss Jones," but the unsubdued phronema sarins is roused in all its ancient bitterness by the misdemeanours of Miss Saurin. She says that "nothing was farther from her thoughts than a retort on the Saurin case;" but as one whole chapter out of five relating to her Romish experience is devoted to remarks upon this celebrated affair, we must be pardoned if, notwithstanding her earnest disclaimer, we find it impossible to divest ourselves of this impression. Indeed, throughout the whole of the second part of her narrative, this unhappy lady is perpetually brought forward. In immediate connection with her name, we are told that "even in the College of Apostles there was one who fell from his glorious calling, who failed to understand the greatness of the vocation to which Christ Himself had admitted him. He was scandalized at his Master's words and acts, and yet that Master was his Creator and his Lord." We forbear comment. Instead, therefore, of the spectacle of a fair nun in the enjoyment of the peace of God, and resembling "the halcyon whose nest floats on the glassy sea undisturbed by the agitation of the waves," we have to face a sturdy and somewhat angry controversialist, much vexed in spirit, and hardly shrinking from breaking a lance even with so formidable an antagonist as Chief Justice Cockburn. Feminine spite crops out in all her animadversions, and we are irresistibly led to the conclusion that the nunnery from. which Miss Saurin was ejected is not the only one in which she might have been very uncomfortable.
One of the author's revelations of convent life has, we must confess, surprised us. That the Dominicanesses of Stone should have a splendid library, seems not unnatural; and that some of the ladies there should devote "rare talents to literary labours of no common value," may be possible. But as our theory of the double authorship of this volume must be relinquished, and we are bound to receive it as the genuine production of a lady who has joined what she terms
a contemplative Order, and dates from the Convent of ,
our preconceived fancies as to the books read by nuns in cloistered shades have been sorely perplexed. In addition to the learned tomes which, no doubt, adorn the shelves, and furnish substantial food for the intellect, the library table, it would seem, is regularly supplied with the Echoes of the Clubs, the Saturday Review, the Guardian., the London Review, the Church News, and the Church Times; and all these appear to be very carefully perused; what other periodicals may be taken in "permissu superiorum," we cannot of course tell, but still, with a carefully selected box from Mudie's at regular intervals, the fair inmates must be better off than most ladies are in country parsonages, and no doubt manage to while time away, during these hours of recreation, more pleasantly than persons outside the convent gate are in the habit of supposing. Even the satirical article in the Saturday Review on the "Girl of the Period" has found its way into sequestered haunts, into which the writer of it, we imagine, never dreamt that it would penetrate, and is a favourite topic with our author. We forget who it was who, on landing at the Pirseus, was shocked and startled at finding the omnibus waiting to take him up to Athens. He could not have been more astonished than we were when we came upon this curious information.
What, then, is the sum of the whole matter? In all sober seriousness, we will state the conclusions to which we have arrived. Accepting this book as a genuine revelation, we are constrained to say that we view it as the production of a very weak, wayward, and impulsive person, of a restless and bitter spirit, upon whom neither Protestantism nor Romanism seem to have exercised any soothing or holy influence. We have not, of course, the slightest knowledge of the author, and judge her only by the exhibition which she has seen fit to make of the spirit that dwells within her. The book is, in our judgment, calculated to be a mischievous one, not, however, from any intrinsic ability displayed in it, nor from any pathetic interest attaching to the writer. Where there is no morbid predilection for Romish views and practices, it might probably repel, so transparent is the malevolence with which it is saturated. But where such morbid sentimentalism does exist, it might do harm. Wise and learned arguments are not requisite for all classes of intellect; indeed, they would often fail to convince them. But what served to convert or pervert the author might well serve the same purpose for persons of a similar mental calibre, similarly ignorant of the true way of salvation, and similarly unconscious of the real merits of the theological questions at issue. For such purposes we think it has been skilfully designed. Curiously enough, while writing this, a little book called the "Priest and his Pervert,"* containing some painful details of a recent case of perversion, has been put into our hands. The line of argument adopted by the Jesuit Priest in his correspondence tallies exactly with that which the author of the work under our review professes to have elaborated for her own benefit! As it may be well for some persons to know what are the pleas urged by Romanists in propagating their tenets, and what rubbish answers the purpose, this volume may have some use. It also gives much insight into the disloyalty of those who are doing the work of Rome within the pale of our own communion, and so far has an especial interest; it is otherwise, to use a term of the author, " disedifying" in the extreme.
* The Priest and his Pervert. By the Rev. X. G. YiTiitestone, M.A. London: W. Hunt. 1869.
LORD HATHERLEY ON THE CONTINUITY OF SCRIPTURE.
The Continuity of Scripture as declared by the testimony of our Lord, and of the Evangelists and Apostles. By William Page, Lord Hatherley. London: John Murray, Albemarle Street. 1869.
This book, at the first glance, might possibly disappoint expectation excited by the high character, religious and intellectual, of its author. It mainly consists—indeed, the work proper is made up of a collection of texts from the Old and the New Testaments, presented in parallel columns, such as all are familiar with in any 'Harmony of the Evangelists;' that is, upon the same principle. A book so composed might very easily be depreciated upon a cursory glance, and be pronounced to be what any one could have put together who should sit down with a Concordance, supplemented by the aid of the Oxford and Cambridge Greek Testaments, edited respectively by the late Bishop Lloyd and the late Professor Scholefield, in both which the marginal references are most judiciously and critically selected.
With such books, and with his Bible, no doubt the Lord Chancellor was furnished, when he began to write: but it would be a very superficial view of his volume to conclude that it was the product of a mechanical transcription of a number of passages from the Old and New Testaments, made ready to the author's hands. It is well known to those who have been in the habit of closely examining marginal references in some editions of the Bible which profess to supply them copiously, that the selection is most loose and unsatisfactory, often including passages possessing a verbal resemblance, and yet irrelevant to that in illustration of which they are adduced. No department of Biblical exposition demands greater discrimination than this: while it is an unostentatious task, it is, however, that which no one may hope to execute who has not long and thoughtfully weighed text of the Scriptures with text; who has not, in this particular sense, "compared spiritual things with spiritual," very carefully.
But even if it furnished less evidence than it does of patient study and mature knowledge of the Bible, a book so constructed would be of very important use, if it should accomplish the end which its author modestly indicates in the first paragraph of the ' Preface':—
"The object of this little book is simply devotional. The com
piler of it desires to strengthen others, as he himself has been strengthened, by the comparison of Scriptnre with Scripture. Frequent perusals of the Old and New Testament have satisfied him that each is an inspired work, such as no wisdom of man could have framed; and further, that the earlier Revelation is as inseparably connected with the later, as the acorn is connected with the oak which springs from it."
These introductory words are a fair sample of the Preface, which is of a highly suggestive character. The skilful compiler desires to obey the injunction "Strengthen thy brethren," to "comfort others with the comfort wherewith he himself has been comforted," and is satisfied, in an unostentatious book, to "excel to the edifying of the Church," according to the true meaning of that term; for in no way are Christians so "built up in their most holy faith," as when a broad and firm foundation has been laid in their minds, that "no wisdom of man could have framed" the two constituent portions of the Bible; when thus the judging faculty has been satisfied by the most powerful evidence.
How does "the comparison of Scripture with Scripture" work this conviction?
The reply to this question conducts us at once to the subject of the book before us. The correspondence of Scripture with Scripture, carried on through a period of more than three thousand years, forces upon the mind the conviction of design— a conviction which is intensified by the discovery that some words which were spoken, or written, at the very earliest stage in this period, are recognized as finding their accomplishment at its latest extremity. Ages have intervened, because "the end" (the fulfilment) "is not yet:" "but when the fulness of the time is come," God's ripened purpose is exhibited; the 'design' which had lain 'treasured up in the unfathomable mines' of Him "who worketh all things after the counsel of His will" comes forth accomplished; and a most powerful assurance is created in the mind of the thoughtful student of Scripture, that 'all is of God.' "Whoso is wise will ponder these things; and he shall understand" that it is not due to fortuitous coincidence, but to a superhuman plan, that the event has thus agreed with the word: and he will thus be led to affix a nobler and more worthy sense than was originally intended, to those words of the Greek poet,—
ftiyas iv Tovtoiq 9eoc,
words which seem to speak of the evidence of an Almighty agent, and of its undying force; and only yielding, in true application, to those of the Prophet—" This also cometh from. Vol.68.—No. 378. 3 0