Saturday, July 17, 2010

John Henry Newman and John Bull

The Lambe speaketh 1555
The British Museum, London

The British Museum catalogue describes the print:

"Anti-catholic satire with a wolf-headed Stephen Gardiner, Bishop of Winchester, biting the neck of a sacrificial lamb suspended by its hind legs above an altar; to right, the bishops of London and Durham, the dean of Westminster and other roman catholic clerics (all with wolves' heads) drink the blood that spurts from the lamb; at Gardiner's feet lie six further lambs bearing the names of Cranmer, Ridley and other protestant reformers; at upper left, three men pull at a rope tied around Gardiner's neck (members of the House of Lords who threw out Gardiner's heresy bill on 1 May 1554) while at lower left a group of gullible men (the Commons who had passed the bill a month earlier) are attached from rings in their noses to a rope around Gardiner's waist; the devil appears top right. c.1555"

A Plot without Powder
The British Museum, London

Meetings of Roman Catholic priests were said to have taken place in Fetter Lane. This print forms the centrepiece of a triptych with "A Plot with Powder".

The inscriptions are:
Lettered at top with title; in a ray penetrating the tent "Digitus Dei. Hic confu"; on the roof of the tent, "Black Breed Fet[ter]. Lane"; on banderoles, on the left, emerging from the mouth of a devil, "I will bee a lying sprit" and on the right, emerging from a pope's head, "Goe and prosper"; the names of the priests around the table; at the bottom, damaged on the left, "[T]his thou didst secretly."

The same priests are shown in the print below and are named.

Anti-catholic illustration to Thomas Scott's "Vox Populi, or Newes from Spayne" (1620): eighteen priests sitting around a table in the house of Lovett, a goldsmith, in Fetter Lane. 1620
Etching and engraving
The British Museum, London

"Inscription Content: Lettered with the names of the priests as follows: F[ather] Palmer, Dr Wright, Dr Bristow, F[ather] Barlow, F[ather] Fisher, Dr Bishop, F[ather] Pateson, F[ather] Porter, F[ather] Worthington, F[ather] Anineur, F[ather] Louet, Dr Smith, F[ather] Ployden, F[ather] Sweete, F[ather] Heigham, F[ather] Maxfield, F[ather] Lurtice, F[ather] Woode; at top, "I have here sett the true portrature of the Jesuits and prists:" , contnued below image, "as they use to sitt at Counsell in England to further ye Catholicke Cause."

The Double Deliverance 1588 1605
The British Museum, London


Anti-catholic satire in three parts below the irradiated name of Jehovah in Hebrew: on the left, the Spanish Armada shown in a horseshoe formation; in the centre, a tent in which the destruction of England is plotted by the Pope, a cardinal, the Devil, a Spanish grandee (possibly Philip II) and a Jesuit seated at a table with three monks in attendance; to right, Guy Fawkes approaches the House of Lords where the vault is stacked with barrels of gunpowder; in the distance is a notional view of the fortifications at Tilbury. 1621

Lettered with texts in Latin, English and Dutch, the most prominent being as follows: above the image, "1588/Deo trin-uni .../To God, In memorye of his double deliveraunce from ye invincible Navie and ye unmatcheable powder Treason/1605"; within the horseshoe shape of the Armada, "Ventorum Ludibrium" ["the wind's mockery"]; on a ray of light with the eye of God emerging from the name of Jehovah and penetrating the cellar of the House of Lords, "Video rideo/I see and smile/Ick sie en lach"; below the image verses in three columns, beginning, "Octogesimus octavus, mirabilis Annus .../In eighty eight, Spayne armed with potent might ...". In the lower right corner of the image: "Invented by Samuel Ward preacher of Ipswich", and in the lower right-hand corner of the sheet, "Imprinted at Amsterdam Anno 1621."

Published by William Marshall 1679 - 1725; fl
The Catholick Gamesters or A Dubble Match of Bowleing
The British Museum, London

"An anti-Catholic broadside concerning the Popish Plot; with an engraving showing a number of incidents. In the top left-hand corner, Charles II seated on the throne within a walled enclosure surrounded by Protestant peers and members of parliament; in an opening at the bottom right of the enclosure, lies the body of Edmund Berry Godfrey to which a man with a lantern draws the attention of three "Popish Misses" (unidentified). In the centre at the top stands a group of men labelled "The Kings Evidence", Oates, Tonge (both in clerical robes), Bedloe, Kirby, Everard, Dugdale, Prance, Bolron, Mowbray, Dangerfield, Jenison and Smith. In the top right-hand corner is a view of London in flames and beneath that six Jesuits (Simons, Strange, Whitbread, Kemish, Blundell, Harcourt) with fire bombs and torches. In the lower right-hand corner, the Pope and the Devil encourage a group of Catholic peers playing at skittles (Belasyse, Stafford, Aston, Arundell, Petre, Powis) foremost among whom is Lord Belasyse whose bowl veers diagonally across the print to strike Godfrey; Lord Danbysis (Danby), standing in the centre, indicates the target; further to the left, stands the group accused of Godfrey's murder (Green, Berry, Hill, Gerald, Kelly) and in the lower left-hand corner are shown their executions. Engraved title, captions and verses below the image; letterpress verses in four columns below. (n.p.: 1679)"

Attributed to James Gillray 1756 - 1815
Grace before meat or a peep at Lord Peter's. 1778
The British Museum, London

"Twelve persons seated round a circular table, their hands in various attitudes of prayer, their heads bent. In the centre, under a canopy, decorated with the royal arms, sit the king and queen. A man on the king's right is intended for Lord Petre (a Catholic noble); a lady on the queen's left for Lady Petre. A tall emaciated monk who stands on the left on a low stool is saying grace. Two footmen stand behind. On the wall (right) is a crucifix and (left) the picture of a saint with a halo. On the table are plates, knives, and various dishes including a sucking-pig and a pie. The guests, especially those facing the king and queen whose backs are turned to the spectators, are caricatured, the king and queen are not.

(Description and comment from M.Dorothy George, 'Catalogue of Political and Personal Satires in the British Museum', V, 1935)
This represents the visit paid by the king and queen to Lord Petre at Thorndon, Essex, 19-21 Oct. 1778, while visiting Warley Camp. This was a recognition of the Catholic Relief Act of 1778, which was unopposed and passed almost unnoticed, though it was to lead to the Gordon Riots. It is the earliest in date of a number of anti-Catholic satires which heralded the Gordon Riots,"

Print made by Anonymous
The Times 1780
The British Museum, London


The Pope enthroned on a raised circular dais of three steps inscribed respectively "Superstition", "Ignorance", and "Absolute Power"; he wears his triple crown, holds a crosier and a document inscribed "no faith to be keep with Heritick[s]". Two keys hang from his waist, and serpents writhe under his feet. Two sceptres lie across one another at his feet. Three sovereigns wearing crowns and ermine robes sit by him, their seats on the ground besides his dais: On his left the King of Spain holding a circular shield on which is a globe representing the world; his crown terminates in a fool's cap, very inapplicable to Charles III, [Cf. BMSat 5717] but see the libel on the king of Spain quoted in Walpole, 'Memoirs of the Reign of George III', 1845, iv. 169,372-5. On the Pope's right sits the king of France, his fleur-de-lys shield at his feet, holding a paper inscribed "Grande Alliance". Behind him is the Emperor, his sceptre ornamented with the Hapsburg eagle. Between these two appears the monster with seven heads (six visible) which denotes the 'Beast', its fore-paws resting on a large book, "Bible". On the ground in front of the Pope are documents inscribed, "Articles of the Catholic Faith" and a list of "Pardons murder . . 10, Adultry 9, Robbery 8 Beating a Priest 12". Behind (right), a martyr is being burned at the stake, a pikeman and monks standing by, one holding a cross in front of the victim; beneath is inscribed "Popish cruelty".
In the foreground (right), George III, a drawn sword, point upwards, against his shoulder, receives a deputation of Protestant petitioners: two ministers in gowns and clerical wigs kneel at his feet, one holding a paper inscribed "Address", the other saying "These Persecutions must be always remembered by Protestants", he points to a Scotsman, partly visible on the extreme right, with a drawn broadsword, who is saying "The Deel a ane o' that Popish Crew shall come this way". He wears Highland dress and a large thistle decorates his cap. Above his head appear the ends of three bayoneted muskets inscribed "150,000". He represents either Lord George Gordon, or Scotland, where the riots had prevented the passing of a Catholic Relief Act, see BMSat 5534, &c. Behind these figures is a sign-post inscribed "the Way to Scotland", on it is a sign-board: the Pope mounted on a beast, the Devil seated by him, confronted by a prancing unicorn. Next the signpost (right) is an obelisk inscribed "Gun Powder Plot; Massacre of the Protestants in Ireland; Fire of London 1666; Burning of Cranmer, Bradford &c. &c." Behind the king stand two courtiers, one wearing a star. At their feet lies "Magna Charta" torn, and the cap of Liberty which a dog is befouling.
In the foreground on the left a Dutchman sits on two boxes, he is smoking a pipe and reading a paper inscribed "Instructions Mynheer van. . . ". The upper box is inscribed "For the use of ye Catholics in Ireland", the lower one "A T" and a mark [see M.Dorothy George, 'Catalogue of Political and Personal Satires in the British Museum', V, 1935]. Beside him is another box, inscribed, "For ye Propegating ye Holy Catholic Faith in Great Britain AD. 40". Behind are three monks, one of whom holds up the Host, three people kneel before it.
The scene is a market-place or public square; on the left is a row of houses in which the nearest and largest building is inscribed "Monastery". Behind the burning martyr, and forming the centre of the background, is a public building with a pillared portico, surmounted by a pediment on which are the royal arms. It has a tower with a hexagonal belfry and cupola, surmounted by a cross.

(Description and comment from M.Dorothy George, 'Catalogue of Political and Personal Satires in the British Museum', V, 1935)

A manifestation of the very active propaganda of the Protestant Association which was going on under Lord George Gordon against the Catholic Relief Act. Wesley had written to the Press in support of the Protestant Association,

Print made by Isaac Cruikshank 1764 - 1811
The protestant St George too much for all the tallons, or the beast with seven heads 1807
Hand coloured etching
The British Museum, London

George III as St. George in armour stands (r.) with raised sword, inscribed 'Coronation Oath', threatening a monster with seven heads on the necks of serpents. He holds an oval shield: 'Protestant Religion as by Law Established'. His r. foot rests on two books: 'Life of Bloody Bonner' and 'Fox's Book of Martyrs'. The Beast has an emaciated leonine body with fiercely taloned paws, one raised to strike, the other resting on: 'Bill. . . Catholic - Army - Navy'. The uppermost heads (l. to r.) are (?) Holland identified as Windham by E. Hawkins, but not resembling him), Moira in cocked hat, and Howick, the most aggressive, who glares fiercely at the King. Below are Petty, Sheridan (whose neck is marked with the pattern of Harlequin's coat), Grenville (pugnacious), and Temple. Behind the Beast is Mrs Fitzherbert, draped with a veil, bending forward with clasped hands and a rosary; she says: "Oh Holy Father we are undone for ever." Behind her and on the extreme left. is the back of the Prince of Wales, hurrying off; he says: "I must hide myself". Behind the King is the profile of the Duke of Portland, saying, "Who will doubt the firmness of Mind of the Father of his People."
See BMSat 10709, &c. The Prince announced his opposition to the Bill, anxious to escape the unpopularity attaching to 'Popery', and under the influence of the Hertford family. For the 'Beast of Rome' cf. BMSat 5534 (1779), where George III is attacked for breaking his coronation oath by consenting to the Catholic Relief Act of 1778.

(Description and comment from M.Dorothy George, 'Catalogue of Political and Personal Satires in the British Museum', VIII, 1947)

There are two sketches in pen for a similar subject, both for the same design, a joust in which the King in armour with closed visor rides down the Pope seated on the shoulders of Grenville. In one (obverse) the Pope throws up his arms, dropping his crosier at the impact of the knight's lance The latter (r.) is on a (white) horse, and has a shield covered with the Royal Arms. Inscriptions: 'The Pope of Rome - Broadbottom his beast - British Knight Defender of the Faith'. The second (reverse), is a study on a larger scale for Grenville (half length) and the Pope. Inscription:

'The Pope on Broadbottom doth ride
And goeth forth to just [sic]
The British Knight humbleth their Pride
I ween at the first Thrust.'"

Print made by William Henry Brooke 1772 - 1860
The confessional or concession without the veto. | Satirist 1st September 1812
Aquatint etching
The British Museum, London


Plate from the 'Satirist', xi. 175, described (pp. 175-81) as a dream of England under Emancipation without the Veto. A priest is seated under a canopy as if in a confessional with side-windows; one foot rests regally on a stool. English Ministers kneel on his left, all making confessions which he passes on through a trumpet in the form of a mitred fish. He does this for the information of Ireland and Napoleon. A demon looks from under his chair towards the Englishmen, who all wear rosaries and have black draperies over their heads. The foremost (the Home Secretary, Lord Fingall) says: "Ireland is ripe for revolt discontents prevail in our midland Counties Oh Ludd!!!" Next, Buckingham, in admiral's uniform as First Lord, says: "We are equipping a strong fleet for the Mediterranean." Goold (an Irish barrister) as Lord Chancellor says: "I will keep the —s [King's, i.e. Regent's] conscience quiet." The Commander-in-Chief, apparently Lord Kenmare, says: "Our force in the Peninsula consists of 54,000 men of which only 30,000 are effective—no more troops shall be sent." Grenville, as Premier, says: "We have just concluded an alliance offensive and defensive with the Protestant Powers in the North."
On the left are Irish ragamuffins, highly delighted with two officers' uniforms and a judge's wig and gown. One puts on the wig and gown, saying, "By J—s Paddy honey this will do." Another, struggling into a much-laced coat: "Arrah be aisey man!!! blood & fire dont you see I'm a General." A sabre and sabretache inscribed 'G R' lie at his (bare) feet. A third picks up an officer's coat, exclaiming, "Och!!! by my own soul but I'mm done for now! Phelim, Phelim where are you joy? here's the divil's own beautifull state Regimentals ready made to my fist sure!!!" Phelim, groaning: "Oh Gramachree whack!!! faith and its yourself O'Doody that they'll be after fitting." A builder's labourer with a hod brandishes a sabre: "Hurroo!!! success to Father O'Flanigan and divil burn the Hod I say." Behind them are two saints in niches. The most prominent is 'Sl Cloud': Napoleon in imperial robes, wearing a cross and holding an orb. He looks down at the Irishmen and listens to the words from the priest's trumpet: 'Cabinet Secrets United Kingdom'. He stands on the decollated head of a Pope (cf. No. 10060). Next and on the extreme left is 'St Patrick', mitred, with book and crosier.

(Description and comment from M. Dorothy George, 'Catalogue of Political and Personal Satires in the British Museum', IX, 1949)

The scene is a side-chapel of a magnificent basilican church, whose nave, drawn with precision and probably adapted from an engraving, is on the right. Double arches, mosaic and frescoes, a Gothic canopy over the altar suggest San Paolo fuori le Mura. It represents, however, St. Peter's miraculously transported to England and replacing St. Paul's. In the nave lawyers compete for the prizes of their profession, racing towards a bar from which hang judges' wigs, and the mace and purse of the Great Seal. One figure (not racing) only is characterized, he appears to be O'Connell. Others mentioned are 'the Keoghs and O'Gormans'

A view of the supposed consequences of Emancipation without safeguard, and with a Ministry hostile (as Grenville was) to the Peninsular war. In 1812 speedy Emancipation was expected, see No. 12016. The Veto, cf. No. 12073, was a scheme for control over the election of bishops, brought forward, 25 May 1808, by Grattan as a concession to the 'No Popery' that had characterized the 1807 election. By 1810 Irish Catholic opinion had condemned it, and by 1812 the Whigs showed readiness to drop it. Fingall (1789-1836), see No. 11570, and Kenmare (1754-3 Oct. 1812), a Unionist, were moderate leaders of the Irish Catholics. Goold (1766-1846) was a Protestant opponent of the Union, and a distinguished Master of Chancery in Ireland. John Keogh (1740-1817) had been replaced by O'Connell as a leader of the Catholics; Cornelius was an opponent of the Veto. The extremer Catholics who rejected the Veto aimed at repeal of the Union and disestablishment of the Church. 'Ludd' is a reference to 'Captain Ludd' of the machine-breaking riots in the Midlands.

Published by S W Fores 1761 - 1838
Print made by Thomas Howell Jones 1824 - 1848; fl
An attempt to choke John Bull with Irish-made dishes. 1829
Hand coloured etching
The British Museum, London


John Bull, an invalid, with drink-blotched face and shrunken legs, sits in an arm-chair (left), flinching from the fare proffered by Wellington and Peel. Wellington, in civilian dress of military cut, presents on a large salver a crucifix, censer, rosary, medallions, and dagger, with two rolled documents: 'Bill for Catholic Emancipation' and 'Price List of Indulgences'. He says: 'Swallow, THIS Johnny & the Catholics will soon have another dish for you!' Close behind him is Peel, carrying the Monument, taller than himself, and with flames issuing from the head of the column. He says: 'Aye and then this the last Memento of thier former exploits!!' Beside John and on the extreme left is Eldon, dressed as a doctor; he leans forward, pointing with left forefinger at the 'dishes', and saying, 'Dont take it Johnny, it will bring on a Cholera Morbus!' John says to Wellington: 'Indeed my prime fellow I shall never be able to get this down—my Constitution is very much impaired—and I fear this will quite destroy it!!!'

(Description and comment from M. Dorothy George, 'Catalogue of Political and Personal Satires in the British Museum', XI, 1954)

Emancipation as fatal to the Constitution is the chief theme of attacks on the Bill, For the Bill as a surrender to Irish agitation, An early allusion to cholera, cf. No. 16922, &c. For the Monument (which "Like a tall bully, lifts its head and lies", Pope, 'Moral Essays') see Nos. 15665, 15701. A "seditious placard" for which the hawker was bound over (25 Apr.) was "An account of a Conversation between St. Paul's Cathedral and the Monument". 'Ann. Reg.', 1829, p. 80; cf. No. 15694."

Print made by Anonymous
No Popery! 1850
The British Museum, London


Anti-Roman Catholic print, with dog dressed in military coat and boots raising hatchet to cut small figure of alarmed Pope who waves his arms in despair. 1850"

Published by Henry Beal fl.1850
The Trial of Queen Victoria c.1850
Letterpress wood engraving
The British Museum, London


A broadside with an anti-papal satire following the revival of the Catholic hierarchy in England, with an outlook on the year 1860; with a wood-engraving showing on the left a cardinal seated, surrounded by various Catholics clerics, including the Pope, on the R Queen Victoria, Prince Albert, and the Prince of Wales; with letterpress title, inscriptions, and text in two columns, and the image framed with a decorative border."

The depth of the hostile reaction to the Catholic Church in the United Kingdom caused by the clerical sex abuse scandal as well as the forthcoming Papal visit should really not be a surprise.

The above satirical prints are only a few from the British Museum`s extensive collection of Satirical Prints

The collection shows how long anti-Catholicism has been embedded in the English (and British) consciousness. Indeed anti-Catholicism was and perhaps still is for many an indispensable element in what constitutes "the British identity". What one is not is frequently as important as what is.

It is perhaps not surprising that the opponents of the Papal visit come from a wide spectrum of British society: secularists, much of the Press, extreme Protestants and others. They of course include some "liberal Catholics" perhaps out of some desire to "belong". By protesting so loudly against the Pope are they asserting an unconscious need to belong to a society which would otherwise keep them on the margins where they normally reside ?

The focus of their opposition has centred on the person of the Pope and the Pope personally. The vehemence of their opposition to the Pope (even hatred on occasion) has been quite astonishing. It has been emotional and at times bordering on the irrational

In 1851 England was in throes of a much more intense period of anti-Catholicism as a result of the reaction to the re-establishment of the Catholic hierarchy in England and Wales and the Letter of Cardinal Wiseman entitled "Out of the Flaminian Gate" which was a rather triumphalist celebration of the re-establishment of the hierarchy.

The then Father John Henry Newman delivered a series of public lectures entitled Lectures on the Present Position of Catholics in England

The lectures analysed why there was such an intense reaction to Catholics at that time. His analysis still remains pertinent today.

Newman`s analysis is an important psychological examination in trying to understand the strength of anti-Catholic feeling in Britain. He was in a unique position. He had been in the vanguard of the Anglican establishment before his conversion. He himself before his conversion had voiced anti-Catholic views publicly (which he later retracted).

Newman was also a historian. He showed how the historical claims and myths underlying "anti-Catholicism" of his time were inaccurate, false and unjustified. But it interesting that the same set of myths are still used today to justify many anti-Catholic rants despite their historical inaccuracy

He described such a version of the historical record as "Fables" or Myths

He showed them to be logically inconsistent and grounded in prejudice, sustained by tradition and by many institutions of the British State.

People who held to such "fables" required ignorance of the Catholic view as a protection for their own position.

"Now I repeat, in order to obviate misconception, I am neither assuming, nor intending to prove, that the Catholic Church comes from above (though, of course, I should not have become, or be, one of her children, unless I firmly held and hold her to be the direct work of the Almighty); but here I am only investigating how it is she comes to be so despised and hated among us; since a Religion need not incur scorn and animosity simply because it is not recognized as true. And, I say, the reason is this, that reasons of State, political and national, prevent her from being heard in her defence. She is considered too absurd to be inquired into, and too corrupt to be defended, and too dangerous to be treated with equity and fair dealing. She is the victim of a prejudice which {12} perpetuates itself, and gives birth to what it feeds upon.

I will adduce two or three instances of what I mean. It happens every now and then that a Protestant, sometimes an Englishman, more commonly a foreigner, thinks it worth while to look into the matter himself, and his examination ends, not necessarily in his conversion (though this sometimes happens too), but, at least, in his confessing the absurdity of the outcry raised against the Catholic Church, and the beauty or the excellence, on the other hand, of those very facts and doctrines which are the alleged ground of it. What I propose to do, then, is simply to remind you of the popular feeling concerning two or three of the characteristics of her history and her teaching, and then to set against them the testimony of candid Protestants who have examined into them. This will be no proof that those candid Protestants are right, and the popular feeling wrong (though certainly it is more likely that they should be right who have impartially studied the matter, than those who have nothing whatever to say for their belief but that they have ever been taught it), but, at least, it will make it undeniable, that those who do not know there are two sides of the question (that is, the bulk of the English nation), are violent because they are ignorant, and that Catholics are treated with scorn and injustice simply because, though they have a good deal to say in their defence, they have never patiently been heard.

1. For instance, the simple notion of most people is, that Christianity was very pure in its beginning, was very corrupt in the middle age, and is very pure {13} in England now, though still corrupt everywhere else: that in the middle age, a tyrannical institution, called the Church, arose and swallowed up Christianity; and that that Church is alive still, and has not yet disgorged its prey, except, as aforesaid, in our own favoured country; but in the middle age, there was no Christianity anywhere at all, but all was dark and horrible, as bad as paganism, or rather much worse. No one knew anything about God, or whether there was a God or no, nor about Christ or His atonement; for the Blessed Virgin, and Saints, and the Pope, and images, were worshipped instead; and thus, so far from religion benefiting the generations of mankind who lived in that dreary time, it did them indefinitely more harm than good. Thus, the Homilies of the Church of England say, that "in the pit of damnable idolatry all the world, as it were, drowned, continued until our age" (that is, the Reformation), "by the space of above 800 years . . . so that laity and clergy, learned and unlearned, all ages, sects, and degrees of men, women, and children, of whole Christendom (an horrible and most dreadful thing to think), have been at once drowned in abominable idolatry, of all other vices most detested of God, and most damnable to man." Accordingly, it is usual to identify this period with that time of apostasy which is predicted in Scripture, the Pope being the man of sin, and the Church being the mother of abominations, mentioned in the Apocalypse. Thus Bishop Newton says, "In the same proportion as the power of the [Roman] empire decreased, the authority of the Church increased, the latter at the expense and ruin of the former; till at length the Pope grew up above {14} all, and 'the wicked one' was fully manifested and 'revealed,' or the 'lawless one,' as he may be called; for the Pope is declared again and again not to be bound by any law of God or man." "The tyrannical power, thus described by Daniel and St. Paul, and afterwards by St. John, is, both by ancients and moderns, generally denominated Antichrist, and the name is proper and expressive enough, as it may signify both the enemy of Christ, and the vicar of Christ." [Note 2] "The mind of Europe was prostrated at the feet of a priest," says a dissenting writer. "The stoutest hearts quailed at his frown. Seated on the throne of blasphemy, he 'spake great words against the Most High,' and 'thought to change times and laws.' Many hated him, but all stood in awe of his power. Like Simon Magus he 'bewitched the people.' Like Nebuchadnezzar, 'whom he would he slew.'" I need not give you the trouble of listening to more of such language, which you may buy by the yard at the first publisher's shop you fall in with. Thus it is the Man paints the Lion. Go into the first Protestant church or chapel or public meeting which comes in your way, you will hear it from the pulpit or the platform. The Church (who can doubt it?) is a sorceress, intoxicating the nations with a goblet of blood.

However, all are not satisfied to learn by rote what they are to affirm on matters so important, and to feed all their life long on the traditions of the nursery. They examine for themselves, and then forthwith we have another side of the question in dispute. For instance, I say, hear what that eminent Protestant {15} historian, M. Guizot, who was lately Prime Minister France, says of the Church in that period, in which she is reported by our popular writers to have been most darkened and corrupted. You will observe (what makes his remarks the stronger) that, being a Protestant, he does not believe the Church really to have been set up by Christ himself, as a Catholic does, but to have taken her present form in the middle age; and he contrasts, in the extract I am about to read, the pure Christianity of primitive times, with that later Christianity, as he considers it, which took an ecclesiastical shape.

"If the Church had not existed," he observes, "I know not what would have occurred during the decline of the Roman Empire. I confine myself to purely human considerations, I cast aside every element foreign to the natural consequence of natural facts, and I say that, if Christianity had only continued, as it was in the early ages,—a belief, a sentiment, an individual conviction,—it is probable it would have fallen amidst the dissolution of the empire, during the invasion of the barbarians . . . I do not think I say too much when I affirm, that, at the close of the fourth and the commencement of the fifth century, the Christian Church was the salvation of Christianity." [Note 3]

In like manner, Dr. Waddington, the present Protestant Dean of Durham, in his Ecclesiastical History [Note 4], observes to the same purport: "At this crisis," viz., when the Western Empire was overthrown, and occupied by unbelieving barbarians, "at this crisis it is not too much to assert, that the Church was the {16} instrument of Heaven for the preservation of the Religion. Christianity itself, unless miraculously sustained, would have been swept away from the surface of the West, had it not been rescued by an established body of ministers, or had that body been less zealous or less influential." And then he goes on to mention six special benefits which the Church of the middle ages conferred on the world; viz., first, she provided for the exercise of charity; secondly, she inculcated the moral duties by means of her penitential discipline; thirdly, she performed the office of legislation in an admirable way; fourthly, she unceasingly strove to correct the vices of the existing social system, setting herself especially against the abomination of slavery; fifthly, she laboured anxiously in the prevention of crime and of war; and lastly, she has preserved to these ages the literature of the ancient world.

Now, without entering into the controversy about idolatry, sorcery, and blasphemy, which concerns matters of opinion, are these Protestant testimonies, which relate to matters of fact, compatible with such imputations? Can blasphemy and idolatry be the salvation of Christianity? Can sorcery be the promoter of charity, morality, and social improvement? Yet, in spite of the fact of these contrary views of the subject,—in spite of the nursery and schoolroom authors being against us, and the manly and original thinkers being in our favour,—you will hear it commonly spoken of as notorious, that the Church in the middle ages was a witch, a liar, a profligate, a seducer, and a bloodthirsty tyrant; and we, who are her faithful children, are superstitious and slavish, because {17} we entertain some love and reverence for her, who, a certain number of her opponents confess, was then, as she is now, the mother of peace, and humanity and order.

2. So much for the middle ages; next I will take an instance of modern times. If there be any set of men in the whole world who are railed against as the pattern of all that is evil, it is the Jesuit body. It is vain to ask their slanderers what they know of them; did they ever see a Jesuit? can they say whether there are many or few? what do they know of their teaching? "Oh! it is quite notorious," they reply: "you might as well deny the sun in heaven; it is notorious that the Jesuits are a crafty, intriguing, unscrupulous, desperate, murderous, and exceedingly able body of men; a secret society, ever plotting against liberty, and government, and progress, and thought, and the prosperity of England. Nay, it is awful; they disguise themselves in a thousand shapes, as men of fashion, farmers, soldiers, labourers, butchers, and pedlars; they prowl about with handsome stocks, and stylish waistcoats, and gold chains about their persons, in fustian jackets, as the case may be; and they do not hesitate to shed the blood of any one whatever, prince or peasant, who stands in their way." Who can fathom the inanity of such statements?—which are made and therefore, I suppose, believed, not merely by the ignorant, but by educated men, who ought to know better, and will have to answer for their false witness. But all this is persisted in; and it is affirmed that they were found to be too bad even for Catholic countries, the governments of {18} which, it seems, in the course of the last century, forcibly obliged the Pope to put them down. Now I conceive that just one good witness, one person who has the means of knowing how things really stand, is worth a tribe of these pamphleteers, and journalists, and novelists, and preachers, and orators. So I will turn to a most impartial witness, and a very competent one; one who was born of Catholic parents, was educated a Catholic, lived in a Catholic country, was ordained a Catholic priest, and then, renouncing the Catholic religion, and coming to England, became the friend and protegé of the most distinguished Protestant prelates of the present day, and the most bitter enemy of the faith which he had once professed—I mean the late Rev. Joseph Blanco White. Now hear what he says about the Jesuits in Spain, his native country, at the time of their suppression.

"The Jesuits," he says [Note 5], "till the abolition of that order, had an almost unrivalled influence over the better classes of Spaniards. They had nearly monopolised the instruction of the Spanish youth, at which they toiled without pecuniary reward, and were equally zealous in promoting devotional feelings both among their pupils and the people at large . . . Wherever, as in France and Italy, literature was in high estimation, the Jesuits spared no trouble to raise among themselves men of eminence in that department. {19} In Spain their chief aim was to provide their houses with popular preachers, and zealous, yet prudent and gentle confessors. Pascal, and the Jansenist party, of which he was the organ, accused them of systematic laxity in their moral doctrines; but the charge, I believe, though plausible in theory, was perfectly groundless in practice . . . The influence of the Jesuits on Spanish morals, from everything I have learned, was undoubtedly favourable. Their kindness attracted the youth from their schools to their Company; and . . . they greatly contributed to the preservation of virtue in that slippery age, both by the ties of affection, and the gentle check of example. Their churches were crowded every Sunday with regular attendants, who came to confess and receive the sacrament . . . Their conduct was correct and their manners refined. They kept up a dignified intercourse with the middle and higher classes, and were always ready to help and instruct the poor, without descending to their level . . . Whatever we may think of the political delinquencies of their leaders, their bitterest enemies have never ventured to charge the Order of Jesuits with moral irregularities." Does this answer to the popular notion of a Jesuit? Will Exeter Hall be content with the testimony of one who does not speak from hereditary prejudice, but from actual knowledge? Certainly not; and in consequence it ignores all statements of the kind; they are to be uttered, and they are to be lost; and the received slander is to keep its place as part and parcel of the old stock in trade, and in the number of the heirlooms of Protestantism, the properties of its stage, the family pictures of its old {20} mansion, in the great controversy between the Lion of the tribe of Judah and the children of men.

3. Now I will go back to primitive times, which shall furnish me with a third instance of the subject I am illustrating. Protestants take it for granted, that the history of the monks is a sore point with us; that it is simply one of our difficulties; that it at once puts us on the defensive, and is, in consequence, a brilliant and effective weapon in controversy. They fancy that Catholics can do nothing when monks are mentioned, but evade, explain away, excuse, deny, urge difference of times, and at the utmost make them out not quite so bad as they are reported; They think monks are the very types and emblems of laziness, uselessness, ignorance, stupidity, fanaticism, and profligacy. They think it a paradox to say a word in their favour, and they have converted their name into a title of reproach. As a Jesuit means a knave, so a monk means a bigot. Here, again, things would show very differently, if Catholics had the painting; but I will be content with a Protestant artist, the very learned, and thoughtful, and celebrated German historian, who is lately dead, Dr. Neander. No one can accuse him of any tendencies towards Catholicism; nor does he set about to compose a panegyric. He is a deep-read student, a man facts, as a German should be; and as a narrator of facts, in his Life of St. Chrysostom, he writes thus:—

"It was by no means intended that the monks should lead a life of listless contemplation; on the contrary, manual labour was enjoined on them as a duty by their rational adherents, by Chrysostom, as {21} well as Augustine, although many fanatical mystics, advocates of an inactive life" (who, by the way, were not Catholics, but heretics) "rejected, under the cloak of sanctity, all connexion of a laborious with a contemplative life. Cassian relates, that not only the monasteries of Egypt, but that the districts of Libya, when suffering from famine, and also the unfortunate men who languished in the prisons of cities, were supported by the labour of the monks. Augustine relates that the monks of Syria and Egypt were enabled, by their labour and savings, to send ships laden with provisions to distressed districts. The monks of the East were remarkable for their hospitality, although their cells and cloisters were infinitely poorer than those of their more recent brethren of the West. The most rigid monks, who lived only on salt and bread, placed before their guests other food, and at times consented to lay aside their accustomed severity, in order to persuade them to partake of the refreshments which were set before them. A monk on the Euphrates collected together many blind beggars, built dwellings for them, taught them to sing Christian hymns with him, and induced a multitude of men, who sought him from all classes, to contribute to their support.

"Besides the promotion of love and charity, there was another object which induced the lawgivers of monachism to enjoin labour as an especial duty. They wished to keep the passions in subjection, and maintain a due balance between the spiritual and physical powers of human nature, because the latter, if unemployed and under no control, easily exercise a destructive influence over the former. {22}

"Among the rules of Basil, we find the following decision respecting the trades which formed the occupation of the monks. Those should be preferred, which did not interfere with a peaceable and tranquil life; which occasioned but little trouble in the provision of proper materials for the work, and in the sale of it when completed; which required not much useless or injurious intercourse with men, and did not gratify irrational desires and luxury; while those who followed the trades of weavers and shoemakers were permitted to labour so far as was required by the necessities, but by no means to administer to the vanities of life. Agriculture, the art of building, the trades of a carpenter and a smith, were in themselves good, and not to be rejected; but it was to be feared that they might lead to a loss of repose, and cause the monks to be much separated from each other. Otherwise, agricultural occupation was particularly to be recommended; and it was by agriculture that the monks, at a later period, so much contributed to the civilization of the rude nations of the West.

"The most venerated of the monks were visited by men of every class. A weighty word, one of those pithy sentiments, uttered by some great monk, of which so many have been handed down to us, proceeding from the mouth of a man universally respected, and supported by the impression which his holy life and venerable appearance had created, when spoken at a right moment, oftentimes effected more than the long and repeated harangues of other men. The children were sent to the monks from the cities to receive their blessings; and on these occasions their {23} minds were strewed with the seeds of Christian truth, which took deep root. Thus, Theodoret says of the Monk Peter: 'He often placed me on his knees and fed me with bread and grapes; for my mother, having had experience of his spiritual grace, sent me to him once every week to receive his blessing.'

"The duties of education were particularly recommended to the monks by Basil. They were enjoined to take upon themselves voluntarily the education of orphans; the education of other youths when entrusted to them by their parents. It was by no means necessary that these children should become monks; they were, if fitted for it, early instructed in some trade or art; and were afterwards at liberty to make a free choice of their vocation. The greatest care was bestowed on their religious and moral acquirements. Particular houses were appointed, in which they were to be brought up under the superintendence of one of the oldest and most experienced monks, known for his patience and benignity, that their faults might be corrected with paternal mildness and circumspect wisdom. Instead of the mythical tales, passages out of the Holy Scriptures, the history of the divine miracles, and maxims out of Solomon's Proverbs, were given them to learn by heart, that they might be taught in a manner at the same time instructive and entertaining.

"The monks of the East greatly contributed to the conversion of the heathen, both by their plain, sincere discourse, and by the veneration which their lives inspired: and their simple mode of living rendered it easy for them to establish themselves in any place." {24}

Now, the enemies of monks may call this an ex parte statement if they will,—though as coming from a Protestant, one does not see with what justice it can undergo such an imputation. But this is not the point. I am not imposing this view of the Monastic Institute on any one; men may call Neander's representation ex parte; they may doubt it, if they will; I only say there are evidently two sides to the question, and therefore that the Protestant public, which is quite ignorant of more sides than one, and fancies none but a knave or a fool can doubt the received Protestant tradition on the subject of monks, is, for the very reason of its ignorance, first furiously positive that it is right, and next singularly likely to be wrong.

Audi alteram partem, hear both sides, is generally an Englishman's maxim; but there is one subject on which he has intractable prejudices, and resolutely repudiates any view but that which is familiar to him from his childhood. Rome is his Nazareth; "Can any good come out of Nazareth?" settles the question with him; happy, rather, if he could be brought to imitate the earnest inquirer in the Gospel, who, after urging this objection, went on nevertheless to obey the invitation which it elicited, "Come and see!
And here I might conclude my subject, which has proposed to itself nothing more than to suggest, to those whom it concerns, that they would have more reason to be confident in their view of the Catholic religion, if it ever had struck them that it needed {25} some proof, if there ever had occurred to their minds at least the possibility of truth being maligned, and Christ being called Beelzebub; but I am tempted, before concluding, to go on to try whether something of a monster indictment, similarly frightful and similarly fantastical to that which is got up against Catholicism, might not be framed against some other institution or power, of parallel greatness and excellence, in its degree and place, to the communion of Rome. For this purpose I will take the British Constitution, which is so specially the possession, and so deservedly the glory, of our own people; and in taking it I need hardly say, I take it for the very reason that it is so rightfully the object of our wonder and veneration. I should be but a fool for my pains, if I laboured to prove it otherwise; it is one of the greatest of human works, as admirable in its own line, to take the productions of genius in very various departments, as the Pyramids, as the wall of China, as the paintings of Raffaelle, as the Apollo Belvidere, as the plays of Shakespeare, as the Newtonian theory, and as the exploits of Napoleon. It soars, in its majesty, far above the opinions of men, and will be a marvel, almost a portent, to the end of time; but for that very reason it is more to my purpose, when I would show you how even it, the British Constitution, would fare, when submitted to the intellect of Exeter Hall, and handled by practitioners, whose highest effort at dissection is to chop and to mangle.

I will suppose, then, a speaker, and an audience too, who never saw England, never saw a member of parliament, a policeman, a queen, or a London mob; {26} who never read the English history, nor studied any one of our philosophers, jurists, moralists, or poets; but who has dipped into Blackstone and several English writers, and has picked up facts at third or fourth hand, and has got together a crude farrago of ideas, words, and instances, a little truth, a deal of falsehood, a deal of misrepresentation, a deal of nonsense, and a deal of invention. And most fortunately for my purpose, here is an account transmitted express by the private correspondent of a morning paper, of a great meeting held about a fortnight since at Moscow, under sanction of the Czar, on occasion of an attempt made by one or two Russian noblemen to spread British ideas in his capital. It seems the emperor thought it best, in the present state of men's minds, when secret societies are so rife, to put down the movement by argument rather than by a military force; and so he instructed the governor of Moscow to connive at the project of a great public meeting which should be opened to the small faction of Anglo-maniacs, or John-Bullists, as they are popularly termed, as well as to the mass of the population. As many as ten thousand men, as far as the writer could calculate, were gathered together in one of the largest places of the city; a number of spirited and impressive speeches were made, in all of which, however, was illustrated the fable of the "Lion and the Man," the man being the Russ, and the lion our old friend the British; but the most successful of all is said to have been the final harangue, by a member of a junior branch of the Potemkin family, once one of the imperial aides-de-camp, who has spent the last thirty years in the wars of the Caucasus. This distinguished {27} veteran, who has acquired the title of Blood-sucker, from his extraordinary gallantry in combat with the Circassian tribes, spoke at great length; and the express contains a portion of his highly inflammatory address, of which, and of certain consequences which followed it, the British minister is said already to have asked an explanation of the cabinet of St. Petersburg: I transcribe it as it may be supposed to stand in the morning print:

The Count began by observing that the events of every day, as it came, called on his countrymen more and more importunately to choose their side, and to make a firm stand against a perfidious power, which arrogantly proclaims that there is nothing like the British Constitution in the whole world, and that no country can prosper without it; which is yearly aggrandizing itself in East, West, and South, which is engaged in one enormous conspiracy against all States, and which was even aiming at modifying the old institutions of the North, and at dressing up the army, navy, legislature, and executive of his own country in the livery of Queen Victoria. "Insular in situation," he exclaimed, "and at the back gate of the world, what has John Bull to do with continental matters, or with the political traditions of our holy Russia?" And yet there were men in that very city who were so far the dupes of insidious propagandists and insolent traitors to their emperor, as to maintain that England had been a civilized country longer than Russia. On the contrary, he maintained, and he would shed the last drop of his blood in maintaining, that, as for its boasted Constitution, it was a {28} crazy, old-fashioned piece of furniture, and an eyesore in the nineteenth century, and would not last a dozen years. He had the best information for saying so. He could understand those who had never crossed out of their island, listening to the songs about "Rule Britannia," and "Rosbif," and "Poor Jack," and the "Old English Gentleman;" he understood and he pitied them, but that Russians, that the conquerors of Napoleon, that the heirs of a paternal government, should bow the knee, and kiss the hand, and walk backwards, and perform other antics before the face of a limited monarch, this was the incomprehensible foolery which certain Russians had viewed with so much tenderness. He repeated, there were in that city educated men, who had openly professed a reverence for the atheistical tenets and fiendish maxims of John-Bullism.

Here the speaker was interrupted by one or two murmurs of dissent, and a foreigner, supposed to be a partner in a Scotch firm, was observed in the extremity of the square, making earnest attempts to obtain a hearing. He was put down, however, amid enthusiastic cheering, and the Count proceeded with a warmth of feeling which increased the effect of the terrible invective which followed. He said he had used the words "atheistical" and "fiendish" most advisedly, and he would give his reasons for doing so. What was to be said to any political power which claimed the attribute of Divinity? Was any term too strong for such a usurpation? Now, no one would deny Antichrist would be such a power; an Antichrist was contemplated, was predicted in Scripture, it was to come in the last times, it was to grow slowly, it {29} was to manifest itself warily and craftily, and then to have a mouth speaking great things against the Divinity and against His attributes. This prediction was most literally and exactly fulfilled in the British Constitution. Antichrist was not only to usurp, but to profess to usurp the arms of heaven—he was to arrogate its titles. This was the special mark of the beast, and where was it fulfilled but in John-Bullism? "I hold in my hand," continued the speaker, "a book which I have obtained under very remarkable circumstances. It is not known to the British people, it is circulated only among the lawyers, merchants, and aristocracy, and its restrictive use is secured only by the most solemn oaths, the most fearful penalties, and the utmost vigilance of the police. I procured it after many years of anxious search by the activity of an agent, and the co-operation of an English bookseller, and it cost me an enormous sum to make it my own. It is called 'Blackstone's Commentaries on the Laws of England,' and I am happy to make known to the universe its odious and shocking mysteries, known to few Britons, and certainly not known to the deluded persons whose vagaries have been the occasion of this meeting. I am sanguine in thinking that when they come to know the real tenets of John Bull, they will at once disown his doctrines with horror, and break off all connexion with his adherents.

"Now, I should say, gentlemen, that this book, while it is confined to certain classes, is of those classes, on the other hand, of judges, and lawyers, and privy councillors, and justices of the peace, and police magistrates, and clergy, and country gentlemen, {30} the guide, and I may say, the gospel. I open the book, gentlemen, and what are the first words which meet my eyes? 'The King can do no wrong.' I beg you to attend, gentlemen, to this most significant assertion; one was accustomed to think that no child of man had the gift of impeccability; one had imagined that, simply speaking, impeccability was a divine attribute; but this British Bible, as I may call it, distinctly ascribes an absolute sinlessness to the King of Great Britain and Ireland. Observe, I am using no words of my own, I am still but quoting what meets my eyes in this remarkable document. The words run thus: 'It is an axiom of the law of the land that the King himself can do no wrong.' Was I wrong, then, in speaking of the atheistical maxims of John Bullism? But this is far from all: the writer goes on actually to ascribe to the Sovereign (I tremble while I pronounce the words) absolute perfection; for he speaks thus: 'The law ascribes to the King in his political capacity ABSOLUTE PERFECTION; the King can do no wrong!'—(groans). One had thought that no human power could thus be described; but the British legislature, judicature, and jurisprudence, have had the unspeakable effrontery to impute to their crowned and sceptred idol, to their doll,"—here cries of "shame, shame," from the same individual who had distinguished himself in an earlier part of the speech—"to this doll, this puppet whom they have dressed up with a lion and a unicorn, the attribute of ABSOLUTE PERFECTION!" Here the individual who had several times interrupted the speaker sprung up, in spite of the efforts of persons about him to keep him down, and cried out, as far as {31} his words could be collected, "You cowardly liar, our dear good little Queen," when he was immediately saluted with a cry of "Turn him out," and soon made his exit from the meeting.

Order being restored, the Count continued: "Gentlemen, I could wish you would have suffered this emissary of a foreign potentate (immense cheering), who is insidiously aiming at forming a political party among us, to have heard to the end that black catalogue of charges against his Sovereign, which as yet I have barely commenced. Gentlemen, I was saying that the Queen of England challenges the divine attribute of ABSOLUTE PERFECTION! but, as if this were not enough this Blackstone continues, 'The King, moreover, is not only incapable of doing wrong, but even of thinking wrong!! he can never do an improper thing; in him is no FOLLY or WEAKNESS!!!'" (Shudders and cheers from the vast assemblage, which lasted alternately some minutes.) At the same time a respectably dressed gentleman below the platform begged permission to look at the book; it was immediately handed to him; after looking at the passages, he was observed to inspect carefully the title-page and binding; he then returned it without a word.

The Count, in resuming his speech, observed that he courted and challenged investigation, he should be happy to answer any question, and he hoped soon to publish, by subscription, a translation of the work, from which he had been quoting. Then, resuming the subject where he had left it, he made some most forcible and impressive reflections on the miserable state of those multitudes, who, in spite of their skill {32} in the mechanical arts, and their political energy, were in the leading-strings of so foul a superstition. The passage he had quoted was the first and mildest of a series of blasphemies so prodigious, that he really feared to proceed, not only from disgust at the necessity of uttering them, but lest he should be taxing the faith of his hearers beyond what appeared reasonable limits. Next, then, he drew attention to the point that the English Sovereign distinctly claimed, according to the same infamous work, to be the "fount of justice;" and, that there might be no mistake in the matter, the author declared, "that she is never bound in justice to do anything." What, then, is her method of acting? Unwilling as he was to defile his lips with so profane a statement, he must tell them that this abominable writer coolly declared that the Queen, a woman, only did acts of reparation and restitution as a matter of grace! He was not a theologian, he had spent his life in the field, but he knew enough of his religion to be able to say that grace was a word especially proper to the appointment and decrees of Divine Sovereignty. All hearers knew perfectly well that nature was one thing, grace another; and yet here was a poor child of clay claiming to be the fount, not only of justice, but of grace. She was making herself a first cause of not merely natural, but spiritual excellence, and doing nothing more or less than simply emancipating herself from her Maker. The Queen, it seemed, never obeyed the law on compulsion, according to Blackstone; that is, her Maker could not compel her. This was no mere deduction of his own, as directly would be seen. Let it be observed, the Apostle {33} called the predicted Antichrist "the wicked one," or as it might be more correctly translated, "the lawless," because he was to be the proud despiser of law; now, wonderful to say, this was the very assumption of the British Parliament. "The Power of Parliament," said Sir Edward Coke, "is so transcendent and absolute, that it cannot be confined within any bounds!! It has sovereign and uncontrollable authority!!" Moreover, the Judges had declared that "it is so high and mighty in its nature, that it may make law, and THAT WHICH IS LAW IT MAY MAKE NO LAW!" Here verily was the mouth speaking great things; but there was more behind, which, but for the atrocious sentiments he had already admitted into his mouth, he really should not have the courage, the endurance to utter. It was sickening to the soul, and intellect, and feelings of a Russ, to form the words on his tongue, and the ideas in his imagination. He would say what must be said as quickly as he could, and without comment. The gallant speaker then delivered the following passage from Blackstone's volume, in a very distinct and articulate whisper: "Some have not scrupled to call its power—the OMNIPOTENCE of Parliament!" No one can conceive the thrilling effect of these words; they were heard all over the immense assemblage; every man turned pale; a dead silence followed; one might have heard a pin drop. A pause of some minutes followed.

The speaker continued, evidently labouring under intense emotion:—"Have you not heard enough, my dear compatriots, of this hideous system of John-Bullism? was I wrong in using the words fiendish {34} and atheistical when I entered upon this subject? and need I proceed further with blasphemous details, which cannot really add to the monstrous bearing of the passages I have already read to you? If the Queen 'cannot do wrong,' if she 'cannot even think wrong,' if she is 'absolute perfection,' if she has 'no folly, no weakness,' if she is the 'fount of justice,' if she is 'the fount of grace,' if she is simply 'above law,' if she is 'omnipotent,' what wonder that the lawyers of John-Bullism should also call her 'sacred!' what wonder that they should speak of her as 'majesty!' what wonder that they should speak of her as a 'superior being!' Here again I am using the words of the book I hold in my hand. 'The people' (my blood runs cold while I repeat them) 'are led to consider their sovereign in the light of a SUPERIOR BEING.' 'Every one is under him,' says Bracton, 'and he is under no one.' Accordingly, the law books call him 'Vicarius Dei in terrâ,' 'the Vicar of God on earth;' a most astonishing fulfilment, you observe, of the prophecy, for Antichrist is a Greek word, which means 'Vicar of Christ.' What wonder under these circumstances, that Queen Elizabeth, assuming the attribute of the Creator, once said to one of her Bishops: 'Proud Prelate, I made you, and I can unmake you!' What wonder that James the First had the brazen assurance to say, that 'As it is atheism and blasphemy in a creature to dispute the Deity, so it is presumption and sedition in a subject to dispute a King in the height of his power!' Moreover, his subjects called him the 'breath of their nostrils;' and my Lord Clarendon, the present Lord Lieutenant of Ireland, in his celebrated History of {35} the Rebellion, declares that the same haughty monarch actually on one occasion called himself 'a god;' and in his great legal digest, commonly called the 'Constitutions of Clarendon,' he gives us the whole account of the King's banishing the Archbishop, St. Thomas of Canterbury, for refusing to do him homage. Lord Bacon, too, went nearly as far when he called him 'Deaster quidam,' 'some sort of little god.' Alexander Pope, too, calls Queen Anne a goddess: and Addison, with a servility only equalled by his profaneness, cries out, 'Thee goddess, thee Britannia's isle adores.' Nay, even at this very time, when public attention has been drawn to the subject, Queen Victoria causes herself to be represented on her coins as the goddess of the seas, with a pagan trident in her hand.

"Gentlemen, can it surprise you to be told, after such an exposition of the blasphemies of England, that, astonishing to say, Queen Victoria is distinctly pointed out in the Book of Revelation as having the number of the beast! You may recollect that number is 666; now, she came to the throne in the year thirty-seven, at which date she was eighteen years old. Multiply then 37 by 18, and you have the very number 666, which is the mystical emblem of the lawless King!!!

"No wonder then, with such monstrous pretensions, and such awful auguries, that John-Bullism is, in act and deed, as savage and profligate, as in profession it is saintly and innocent. Its annals are marked with blood and corruption. The historian Hallam, though one of the ultra-bullist party, in his Constitutional History, admits that the English tribunals {36} are 'disgraced by the brutal manners and iniquitous partiality of the bench.' 'The general behaviour of the bench,' he says elsewhere, 'has covered it with infamy.' Soon after, he tells us that the dominant faction inflicted on the High Church Clergy 'the disgrace and remorse of perjury.' The English Kings have been the curse and shame of human nature. Richard the First boasted that the evil spirit was the father of his family; of Henry the Second St. Bernard said, 'From the devil he came, and to the devil he will go;' William the Second was killed by the enemy of man, to whom he had sold himself, while hunting in one of his forests; Henry the First died of eating lampreys; John died of eating peaches; Clarence, a king's brother, was drowned in a butt of malmsey wine; Richard the Third put to death his Sovereign, his Sovereign's son, his two brothers, his wife, two nephews, and half-a-dozen friends. Henry the Eighth successively married and murdered no less than six hundred women. I quote the words of the 'Edinburgh Review,' that, according to Hollinshed, no less than 70,000 persons died under the hand of the executioner in his reign. Sir John Fortescue tells us that in his day there were more persons executed for robbery in England in one year, than in France in seven. Four hundred persons a year were executed in the reign of Queen Elizabeth. Even so late as the last century, in spite of the continued protests of foreign nations, in the course of seven years there were 428 capital convictions in London alone. Burning of children, too, is a favourite punishment with John Bull, as may be seen in this same Blackstone, who notices the burning of a girl of thirteen given by Sir {37} Matthew Hale. The valets always assassinate their masters; lovers uniformly strangle their sweethearts; the farmers and the farmers' wives universally beat their apprentices to death; and their lawyers in the inns of court strip and starve their servants, as has appeared from remarkable investigations in the law courts during the last year. Husbands sell their wives by public auction with a rope round their necks. An intelligent Frenchman, M. Pellet, who visited London in 1815, deposes that he saw a number of sculls on each side of the river Thames, and he was told they were found especially thick at the landing-places among the watermen. But why multiply instances, when the names of those two-legged tigers, Rush, Thistlewood, Thurtell, the Mannings, Colonel Kirk, Claverhouse, Simon de Monteforte, Strafford, the Duke of Cumberland, Warren Hastings, and Judge Jeffreys, are household words all over the earth? John-Bullism, through a space of 800 years, is semper idem, unchangeable in evil. One hundred and sixty offences are punishable with death. It is death to live with gipsies for a month; and Lord Hale mentions thirteen persons as having, in his day, suffered death thereon at one assize. It is death to steal a sheep, death to rob a warren, death to steal a letter, death to steal a handkerchief, death to cut down a cherry-tree. And, after all, the excesses of John-Bullism at home are mere child's play to the oceans of blood it has shed abroad. It has been the origin of all the wars which have desolated Europe; it has fomented national jealousy, and the antipathy of castes in every part of the world; it has plunged flourishing states into the abyss of revolution. {38} The Crusades, the Sicilian Vespers, the wars of the Reformation, the Thirty Years' War, the War of Succession, the Seven Years' War, the American War, the French Revolution, all are simply owing to John-Bull ideas; and, to take one definite instance, in the course of the last war, the deaths of two millions of the human race lie at his door; for the Whigs themselves, from first to last, and down to this day, admit and proclaim, without any hesitation or limitation, that that war was simply and entirely the work of John-Bullism, and needed not, and would not have been, but for its influence, and its alone.

"Such is that 'absolute perfection, without folly and without weakness,' which, revelling in the blood of man, is still seeking out her victims, and scenting blood all over the earth. It is that woman Jezebel, who fulfils the prophetic vision, and incurs the prophetic denunciation. And, strange to say, a prophet of her own has not scrupled to apply to her that very appellation. Dead to good and evil, the children of Jezebel glory in the name; and ten years have not passed since, by a sort of infatuation, one of the very highest Tories in the land, a minister, too, of the established religion, hailed the blood-stained Monarchy under the very title of the mystical sorceress. Jezebel surely is her name, and Jezebel is her nature; for drunk with the spiritual wine-cup of wrath, and given over to believe a lie, at length she has ascended to heights which savour rather of madness than of pride; she babbles absurdities, and she thirsts for impossibilities. Gentlemen, I am speaking the words of sober seriousness; I can prove what I say to the letter; the extravagance is not in me but in the {39} object of my denunciation. Once more I appeal to the awful volume I hold in my hands. I appeal to it, I open it, I cast it from me. Listen, then, once again; it is a fact; Jezebel has declared her own omnipresence. 'A consequence of the royal prerogatives,' says the antichristian author, 'is the legal UBIQUITY of the King!' 'His Majesty is always present in all his courts: his judges are the mirror by which the King's image is reflected;' and further, 'From this ubiquity' (you see he is far from shrinking from the word), 'from this ubiquity it follows that the Sovereign can never be NONSUIT!!' Gentlemen, the sun would set before I told you one hundredth part of the enormity of this child of Moloch and Belial. Inebriated with the cup of insanity, and flung upon the stream of recklessness, she dashes down the cataract of nonsense, and whirls amid the pools of confusion. Like the Roman emperor, she actually has declared herself immortal! she has declared her eternity! Again, I am obliged to say it, these are no words of mine; the tremendous sentiment confronts me in black and crimson characters in this diabolical book. 'In the law,' says Blackstone, 'the Sovereign is said never to die!' Again, with still more hideous expressiveness, 'The law ascribes to the Sovereign an ABSOLUTE IMMORTALITY. THE KING NEVER DIES.'

"And now, gentlemen, your destiny is in your own hands. If you are willing to succumb to a power which has never been contented with what she was, but has been for centuries extending her conquests in both hemispheres, then the humble individual who has addressed you will submit to the necessary consequence; {40} will resume his military dress, and return to the Caucasus; but if, on the other hand, as I believe, you are resolved to resist unflinchingly this flood of satanical imposture and foul ambition, and force it back into the ocean; if, not from hatred to the English—far from it—from love to them (for a distinction must ever be drawn between the nation and its dominant John-Bullism); if, I say, from love to them as brothers, from a generous determination to fight their battles, from an intimate consciousness that they are in their secret hearts Russians, that they are champing the bit of their iron lot, and are longing for you as their deliverers; if, from these lofty notions as well as from a burning patriotism, you will form the high resolve to annihilate this dishonour of humanity; if you loathe its sophisms, 'De minimis non curat lex,' and 'Malitia supplet ætatem,' and 'Tres faciunt collegium,' and 'Impotentia excusat legem,' and 'Possession is nine parts of the law,' and 'The greater the truth, the greater the libel'—principles which sap the very foundations of morals; if you wage war to the knife with its blighting superstitions of primogeniture, gavelkind, mortmain, and contingent remainders; if you detest, abhor, and abjure the tortuous maxims and perfidious provisions of its habeas corpus, quare impedit, and qui tam (hear, hear); if you scorn the mummeries of its wigs, and bands, and coifs, and ermine (vehement cheering); if you trample and spit upon its accursed fee simple and fee tail, villanage, and free soccage, fiefs, heriots, seizins, feuds (a burst of cheers, the whole meeting in commotion); its shares, its premiums, its post-obits, its percentages, its tariffs, its broad and narrow gauge"—Here the cheers became frantic, and drowned the {41} speaker's voice, and a most extraordinary scene of enthusiasm followed. One half of the meeting was seen embracing the other half; till, as if by the force of a sudden resolution, they all poured out of the square, and proceeded to break the windows of all the British residents. They then formed into procession, and directing their course to the great square before the Kremlin, they dragged through the mud, and then solemnly burnt, an effigy of John Bull which had been provided beforehand by the managing committee, a lion and unicorn, and a Queen Victoria. These being fully consumed, they dispersed quietly; and by ten o'clock at night the streets were profoundly still, and the silver moon looked down in untroubled lustre on the city of the Czars.

Now, my Brothers of the Oratory, I protest to you my full conviction that I have not caricatured this parallel at all. Were I, indeed, skilled in legal matters, I could have made it far more natural, plausible, and complete; but, as for its extravagance, I say deliberately, and have means of knowing what I say, having once been a Protestant, and being now a Catholic—knowing what is said and thought of Catholics, on the one hand, and, on the other, knowing what they really are—I deliberately assert that no absurdities contained in the above sketch can equal—nay, that no conceivable absurdities can surpass—the absurdities which are firmly believed of by sensible, kind-hearted, well-intentioned Protestants. Such is the consequence of having looked at things all on one side, and shutting the eyes to the other."

1 comment:

  1. Many many thanks.

    I am very impressed that the cartoons survived since ephemera, almost by definition, is the first historical evidence (of anything significant) to disappear. I am particularly impressed with the 17th century cartoons since it suggests a fear of Catholic political power above and beyond what might have been expected with the early Stuarts. The King Charles II cartoon is also a historical treasure.