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history can be formed, are the least sanguine in their expectations of the accomplishment of an object so greatly to be desired. In some respects, doubtless, as belonging to a different Church and country from our own, and therefore free from many of the strong prepossessions under the influence of which the facts of history have been so fearfully distorted, Dr. D'Aubigne' stands in a more favourable position than that of the majority of his predecessors with regard to the task which he has undertaken. On the other hand, it is impossible to be insensible to the fact, that there are more than ordinary difficulties to be encountered by one who can be but imperfectly acquainted with the peculiarities of the English Constitution, both in Church and State, and with the relation in which the one has stood to the other, both in more recent and in more remote times; and who, in his endeavours to make himself familiar, not only with the leading events of history, but also with the more secret springs of action by which its chief actors have been influenced, is constrained to grope his way through a vast mass of material which exists only in a language the acquirement of which presents no ordinary obstacles to the inhabitants of other countries.
It is much to be regretted that the translation of a work proceeding from the pen of an author so universally known and respected as Dr. D'Aubigne", should have been entrusted to any one who is unacquainted with the English equivalents for the ordinary idioms of the French language; and also that the revision of the press should have been conducted in so inefficient a manner as very materially to misrepresent, in many places, the meaning of the writer. There are, moreover, many other indications in the volume which lies before us, that "the History of the Reformation in Europe" is a work the magnitude of which surpasses the ability of any single individual, however varied his accomplishments, and however indefatigable his exertions.*
* We subjoin, not only as an act of is translated 'afternoon,' which involves
justice to Dr. D'Aubigne, but also in a contradiction in terins in the very
the hope that the future editions of next line. In p. 221, the sentence be
tliis volume may be purged from the ginning 'The Germans have made the
errors which disfigure the present, a text of the Bible so easy, by the Hebrew
few specimens of the inaccuracies to and Greek tongue? is utterly unintelli
which we allude:— gible without a referenco to the French.
In p. 15, by the omission of any In p. 224, allait tourner la midaille is
equivalent for the word ancien. Sir translated'was about to turn the medal,'
Thomas More is represented as being, instead of was about to turn the tables.
at one and the same time, both Chan- In p. 236, the authority of the Pope is
cellor and ex-Chancellor. In p. 28, the said to put those who admit it in a
word presbyters is rendered 'presbytery* position to know what they believe, in
instead of parsonage. In p. 71, toute stead of what they ought to believe (ce
liberty is translated 'every* instead of qu'ils doivent croire.)
all liberty, to the serious injury of the As specimens of errors of the press,
writer's meaning. In p. 191, lendemain we may refer to p. 66, where 1553 stands for 1535; to p. 169, where 1636 Cromwell, was nephew to the Earl of
We are not conscious of any disposition to disparage the importance, alike in its immediate and in its remote results, of the great German Reformation ; but we are by no means prepared, as regards England, to acquiesce in the opinion expressed by Dr. D'Aubigne in the Preface to the first volume of bis work, that "the rest revolve in wider or narrower circles around it, like satellites drawn after it by its movement." We give Dr. D'Aubigne entire credit for sincerity in the desire which he has expressed to deal impartially with all the actors in this great movement, nor do we at all complain that, in the application of this principle to our own country, he should show no disposition " to conceal the faults and errors of the Reformers.'" Our complaint is that, in some instances, he has suffered himself to be too much influenced by the unauthorised statements of popular writers; and in others, that he has, from his imperfect acquaintance, probably, with the language, drawrn inferences wholly unwarranted by, and even inconsistent with, the authorities to which he refers. As an instance of bis inability to form a correct estimate of the character and conduct of some of the chief actors in the English Reformation, and of the peculiar delicacy and difficulties of the position in which the Reformers in this country were placed, we may refer, on the one hand, to his very exaggerated representation of the personal character of Anne Boleyn, and the services which she rendered to the cause of the Reformation; and, on the other, to his systematic disparagement of the character and conduct of Granmer, whom our author does not scruple to designate as "the most unfortunate, but not the least guilty (or, as it is in the French, perhaps the most guilty*) of all the lords who lent themselves servilely to the despotic wishes of the prince." (p. 188.)
stands for 1536; to p. 252, note, where Essex, and great-grandfather of Oliver
1525 stands for 1535; and to p. 265, Cromwell, and (iii.) to the yet more se
whuro 1526 probably stands for 1536, rious, though doubtless unintentional,
although even on that supposition the misrepresentation which occurs in p.
statement that "more than 20 editions 180, in which Froudo, who declares that
of Tyndale's New Testament had heen the supposition that the charges brought
circulated over the kingdom," is quite against Anne Boleyn were inventions,
devoid of authority. is to him "impossible," is apparently
As specimens of great carelessness, included amongst those writers who
we may refer (i.) to the contradictory "have acknowledged that these hideous
statements contained in pp. 97 and 230, charges were hut fables invented at
in the former of which Cromwell is pleasure." We feel, also, that it is
represented as Vice-gcrent in Soptem- due to our readers to make them ac
her, 1535; and in the latter of which quainted with the fact that Dr.
his appointment to that office is said to l)'Aubign6 is evidontly ignorant that
have taken place a few days later than the inference which English readers
the 2nd of July, 1536. (ii.) to the state- draw from the use of inverted commas
ment that Oliver Cromwell was grand- in quotations is that the words so
nephew to the Earl of Essex (p. 61), quoted are extracted verbatim from the
an error founded, as we presume, on a sources indicated, misunderstanding of the statement of * "Peut-etre lo plus coupable." (p.
Nohle, that Sir Eichard Williams, alias 206.)
But we gladly turn from that portion of Dr. D'Aubigne"'s work (a very small portion in comparison with the whole of his great undertaking) which treats of the English Reformation, to congratulate his readers—and they are many—on the resumption of his account of the progress of the Reformation in a country with which he is so familiar, and in the "little city," the chequered fortunes of which he relates with an enthusiasm which cannot fail to communicate itself to his readers. Here our author consciously treads on safer ground, and it is not too much to say that, as in the case of Macaulay, of whose style that of Dr. D'Aubigne" so frequently reminds us, his peculiarly graphic and impassioned narrative combines in almost equal measure the interest which belongs to history and to romance.
Amongst the many scenes brilliantly described by our author, to which we would refer those of our readers, if such there be, who are not already acquainted with the volume before us, we would single out, as favourable specimens of Dr. D'Aubigne's style of writing, the account, contained in the 12th and 13th chapters, of the extreme peril of the city of Geneva, in 1536, and the joy consequent Hpon the arrival of its liberators; and again, the graphic description of the arrival of Calvin at the same city, during the same year, and his meeting with Farel, as contained in chap. 17.
It is from the latter chapter that we select the following extract. The circumstances referred to are as follows:—Calvin had just arrived at Geneva, intending to remain there only a single night. The news of his arrival reached Farel, who had read the "Christian Institutes," and recognised in its author one of the deepest theologians and most eloquent writers of his age. An inward voice seemed to convey to Farel the assurance that, in the person of the youthful traveller who was passing through Geneva, God had sent him the much-desired friend and fellowlabourer whom he so greatly needed in the arduous work in which he was engaged in that city. Farel hastened to the inn, and entered into conversation with the young theologian.
"' Stay with me,' said Farel, 'and help me. There is work to be done in this city.' Calvin replied with astonishment: 'Excuse me, I cannot stop here more than one night.' 'Why do you seek elsewhere for what is now offered you?' replied Farel: 'why refuse to edify the Church of Geneva by your faith, zeal, and knowledge?' The appeal was fruitless: to undertake so great a task seemed to Calvin impossible. 'But Farel, inspired by the spirit of a hero,' says Theodore Beza, 'would not be discouraged.' Ho pointed out to the stranger that, as the Reformation had been miraculously established in Geneva, it ought not to be abandoned in a cowardly manner; that if he did not take the part offered to him in this task, the work might probably perish, and be would be the cause of the ruin of the Church. .... Farel, seeing that neither prayers nor exhortations could avail with Calvin, reminded him of a frightful example of disobedience similar to his own. 'Jonah also,' he said, 'wanted to flee from the presence of the Lord, but the Lord cast him into the sea.' The struggle in the young doctor's heart became more keen. He was violently shaken, like an oak assailed by the tempest; he bent before the blast, and rose up again; but a last gust, more impetuous than all the others, was shortly about to uproot him. . . . Farel's heart was hot within him. . . . Fixing his eyes of fire on the young man, and placing bis hands on the head of his victim, he exclaimed in his voice of thunder: 'May God curse your repose! may God curse your studies, if, in such a great necessity as ours, you withdraw, and refuse to give us help and support.'
"At these words, the young doctor, whom Farel had for some time kept on the rack, trembled. He shook in every limb; he felt that Farel's words did not proceed from himself: God was there, the holiness of the presence of Jehovah laid strong hold of his mind: he saw Him who is invisible. It appeared to him, he said, 'that the hand of God was stretched down from heaven, that it laid hold of him, and fixed him irrevocably to the place he was so impatient to leave.' He could not free himself from that terrible grasp. Like Lot's wife when she looked back on her tranquil home, he was rooted to his seat, powerless to move. At last he raised his head, and peace returned to his soul: he had yielded, he had sacrificed the studies he loved so well, he had laid his Isaac on the altar, he consented to lose his life to save it." (pp. 536—540.)
We do not profess to be equally familiar with the authorities to which Dr. D'Aubigne" chiefly refers in this portion of his history, as with those to which recourse must be had by every student of the history of the English Reformation. We observe, however, that the references in the foot-notes of this portion of Dr. D'Aubigne's work are given in a more exact and scholarlike manner, and that the translation is comparatively free from those blunders which occur too frequently in the earlier part of the volume.
We sincerely trust that Dr. D'Aubigne may be permitted to complete the programme which he has laid down for himself in the preface to the 10th volume of his History, so far as relates to the progress of the Reformation amongst the various Continental nations. We trust also, that if the integrity of the work should seem to him to demand the continuation of the history of the English Reformation, he will not grudge the labour which may be necessary both to familiarize his own mind with all that has been written upon this subject by our best historians, and also to present to his readers, in a more reliable form, the independent results of his own investigations.
ON FEMALE EDUCATION.
The Princess, a Medley. By Alfred Tennyson. London:
Moxon. 1866. Examination Papers for Women, University of Cambridge, with
Lists of Syndics and Examiners for the Examination held
in July, 1869. London and Cambridge: Rivingtons and
Those who are familiar with Greek Literature are not likely to forget that most amusing scene in Aristophanes, in which Cleon and the sausage-seller vie with each other in offering gifts to propitiate the favour of Demos; the contention becomes last and furious, but at length the discomfited Cleon is compelled to surrender the ring which, like Pharoah's given to Joseph, had been the emblem of his stewardship, and to give way to the rival who had been more successful in his flattery, and more lavish of his bribes.
In much the same spirit have our two Universities of Oxford and Cambridge for some years past been bidding against each other. After having for centuries been considered to be, we think with considerable injustice, the strongholds of exclusive prejudices and of conservative traditions, they have of late rushed suddenly and wildly into the opposite extreme, and have emulously striven to divest themselves of every restriction, and to surrender every privilege which might be inconsistent with alluring the popular suffrage. Dissenters and Radical Eeformers must, we think, have at times looked on amazed; and although naturally they may have asked for "more," must have been astonished at the readiness with which their appeals have been listened to and granted. Now, all this may be, or may not be, very wise. It may be that, with prescient eye, the leaders of such movements have discovered the dim and shadowy outline of the mighty form which, as yet confused and indistinct, is gradually evolving itself and gathering shape and consistence, and is destined ere long to surpass and domineer over all our ancient institutions, and to maintain or destroy them according to its own caprice. The policy may be prudent which would conciliate with timely concessions, and attempt to lead and regulate what might be, without such intervention, wild and lawless. Or it may be a futile endeavour "to ride on a whirlwind and direct a storm," and those who make the attempt with reckless impetuosity, may precipitate what might have been retarded, if not altogether averted. One thing at any rate is clear,—that an active and influential party in our