Newark. Stephen observed these encroachments with alarm, and resolved to check their progress. He availed himself of a quarrel between the dependants of the former prelate, and those of the Earl of Britanny, as a pretence for preventing the further erection of fortifications by the clergy, as well as for possess ing himself of those already erected. He accordingly imprisoned these bishops, and seized their fortresses.

But such was the interested attachment of the clerical fraternitysuch their unity of design and similarity of spirit, that to make one or two the object of attack was to alarm and enrage the whole. This bold, but impolitic, measure of Stephen, roused the indignation of his brother, the Bishop of Winchester, who holding the legantine commission, was more influenced by pride and thirst for dominion, than piety or fraternal affection. Resenting the indignity and pretended impiety of the King, he called a synod at Westminster, on the 30th of August, A. D. 1139, and contended, that the punishment inflicted on the two bishops, was such as none but a spiritual court could inflict. The synod, anxious to improve the present, dared to cite the King before them to account for his conduct; who, unlike a monarch, degraded himself by sending a deputy to accuse the two prelates of treason and sedition, and defend his recent measures. The synod refusing to attend to the case till the castles were restored, and the Bishop of Salisbury avowing his intention of appealing to the Pope, the King terminated the affair, by showing an inclination of ending the dispute in a more prompt and decided manner. Soon after, the Empress Matilda, doubtless hearing of Stephen's perplexities, as well as encouraged by many, and secretly even by the legate himself, arrived in England, and after many useless negociations for peace, the adherents of the Empress, and Stephen, with his troops, met in the vicinity of Lincoln castle; and, on the 2d of February, 1140, engaged each other, when the royalists were beaten, and the King made a captive. Matilda was too well



acquainted with the nature Popery and its priests, to suppose her success was great till their favour was secured; and the more so, as she had reason to suppose the legate had rather intended to humble than ruin his brother. On the 2d of March she held a conference with him, in a plain near Winchester, and on her promising that he should conduct the administration, and fill all vacant bishoprics and abbies, the allowance of which terms was guaranteed on her part by several nobles, he cautiously consented to acknowledge her right, as long as she should observe these conditions. They then proceeded in procession to Winchester, where, in the presence of many witnesses, he cursed her enemies, and blessed her friends.

The Empress, anxious at any rate to possess the crown, consented to receive it from the clergy; for which crafty purpose, the legate called a synod, at which he delivered a most hypocritical address, pretending still affection for his captive brother, but more for his heavenly Father, who had resigned the King to the hands of his enemies. He boldly declared, that it chiefly belonged to the clergy to elect kings, and that he had convened them for that purpose, and that having sought the direction of God, he now proposed Matilda, the only descendant of Henry, as their queen; to which the assembly consented, except the deputies from London, the only lay-men present, who objected: but the legate evaded their scruples. Yet, not long after, we find this very man instigating the Londoners to revolt, and besieging Matilda at Winchester; and, so precarious was her situation, that she thought it safe to retreat.

How transitory is human greatness! Eugenius III, on succeeding to the Papacy, deprived the Bishop of Winchester of the legantine commission, and gave it to his rival, the Archbishop of Canterbury: and thus humbled his increasing arrogance, and arrested his treachery. The new Pope calling a council, and intent, like his emissaries, upon the augmentation of the ecclesiastical influence, refused to the



Pope Clement V. deposed Henry

English church the accustomed now part of the Canon Law, the fol"We declare and right of choosing its own represen-lowing decree :tatives. Stephen, who had for some pronounce it, as necessary to salvatime obtained his liberty, and re- tion, that all mankind be subject to sumed his imperfect government, the Roman Pontiff.” tho' depressed, had not lost all spirit, disallowed the attendance of the deputies of the pontiff's appointment; which roused his anger, and Induced him to place the King's party under an interdict, from the terrors and alarms of which, the King could only extricate himself by humiliating submission.

The youth who wisely reads his Bible, scarcely needs to be reminded, that Christianity teaches and enforces the very reverse of all this. It uniformly recommends the exercise and practice of that genuine charity, which “suffereth long and is kind; which doth not behave itself unseemly, which seeketh not her own, but beareth all things."


Pope John XXII. deprived the Emperor Lodovick.

Pope Gregory IX. deposed the Emperor Wenceflans.

Pope Paul III. deprived Henry VIII. of England."

Vide Dr. Chandler's sermon. Nov. 5, 1714, page 20.

[blocks in formation]

REFORMATION ANECDOTES. the spear's point that pierced our

Sovereign Princes excommunicated,

"Pope Zachary I. deposed derick, King of France.

Pope Gregory VII. deposed Henry IV. Emperor.

Saviour's side: as many picces of the cross were found, as joined together, would have made a big cross. The Rood of Grace at BoxChil-ley, in Kent, had been much esteemed, and drawn many pilgrims to it: it was observed to bow, and roul its eyes; and look at times well pleased, or angry; which the credulous multitude imputed to a Divine Power; bnt all this was discovered to be a cheat, and it was brought up to St. Paul's Cross; and all the springs were openly shewed, that governed its several motions. At Hales, in Glocestershire, the blood of Christ was shewed in a vial; and it was believed that none could see it who

Pope Urban II. deposed Philip, King of France.

Pope Adrian IV. deposed William, King of Sicily.

Pope Innocent III, deposed Philip, Emperor.

Pope Gregory deposed Frederick II.

Pope Innocent IV. deposed King were in mortal sin: and so after John of England.

Pope Urban IV. deposed Mamphred, King of Sicily.

Pope Nicholas III. deposed Charles, King of Sicily.

Pope Martin IV. deposed Peter of Arragon.

good presents were made, the deluded pilgrims went way well satisfied if they had seen it. This was the blood of a duck renewed every week, put in a vial very thick of one side, as thin on the other; and

either side turned towards the pilgrim, as the priests were satisfied with their oblations: several other Pope Boniface VIII. deprived such like impostures were discoPhilip the Fair, upon which occa-vered, which contributed much to sion, to justify what he had done, the undeceiving the people." he published in his bull, which is

Abridg. p. 209.

Pilgrimages to Canterbury.

racle indeed to have distinguished
them afterwards."

Burnet's Abridg. p. 201.

Revenues of the Church of Rome in
the 16th Century.

"The Church had found means
to ingross the greatest part of the
treasure of the western world into
their own hands; and had not a stop
been put to their encroachments, in
a little while more, they would have
inslaved and impoverished all man-
kind that owned their usurpation.

"Nor need we wonder at this, considering how many hands were employed: the grand fisherman at Rome, had a multitude in every country to angle partly for him, and partly for themselves. Alsted reckons above 100 years ago, that there were then at least 225,044 monasteries in Christendom; and if you allow 40 persons to an house, the number will be more than nine millions. Now all these, and the rest of the ecclesiasticks, which like locusts had overspread the face of the earth, lived upon the plunder of the people: and besides, they had a thousand little tricks, and devices to get money; they could sell a dead man's bones at a vast sum; Austin's particularly (that were translated from Hippo to Sardinia,) were purchased at 100 talents of silver, and a talent of gold: and having almost an infinite variety of ware, which they put off at no small rate, taking advantage of the superstition and credulity of their silly chapmen, it strangely enriched them: their own poet Mantuan acknowledges, that all things were set to sale at Rome: not only temples, priests, and altars, but heaven and God.

"The richest shrine in England was Thomas Beckets at Canterbury, whose story is well known. After he had long imbroiled England, and shewed that he had a spirit so turned to faction, that he could not be at quiet; some of Henry the Second's officious servants killed him in the church of Canterbury: he was presently canonized, and held in greater esteem than any other saint whatsoever; so much more was a martyr for the Papacy valued, than any that suffered for the Christian religion: and his altar | drew far greater oblations, than those that were dedicated to Christ, or the blessed Virgin; as appears by the accounts of two of their years. In one, 3l. 2s. 6d.; and in another, not a penny was offered at Christ's altar. There was in the one, 631. 5s. 3d.; and in the other, 41. 1s. 8d. offered at the blessed Virgin's altar. But in these very years there was, 8321. 128. 3d. and 9647. 6s. 3d. offered at St. Thomas's altar. The shrine grew to be of inestimable value. Lewis the Seventh of France came over in pilgrimage to visit it, and offered a stone, valued to be the richest in Europe. He had not only one holyday, the 29th of December, called his Martyrdom; but also the day of his Translation, the 7th of July, was also a holy-day; and every 50th year there was a Jubily, and an Indulgence granted to all that came and visited his tomb and sometimes there were believed to be 100,000 pilgrims there on that occasion. It is hard to tell, whether the hatred to his seditious practices, or the love of his shrine, set on King Henry [VIII.] more to unsaint him. "In the time of our Henry III. it His shrine was broken, and the gold was reckoned, that the pope's reveof it was so heavy, that it filled two nue out of England exceeded the chests, which took eight men a piece king's; and some who have endeato carry them out of the church; and voured to make the estimate, tell his skull, which had been so much us, that there went 60,000 marks worshipped, was proved to be an yearly out of this land to Rome. imposture; for the true skull was Some have computed, that the with the rest of his bones in his cof-tenths and first-fruits only in Engfin; his bones were either burnt, as it was given out at Rome; or so mixed with other bones, as our writers say, that it had been a mi

land paid to the clergy, amounted
to more than 20,000l. per annum."

Bennet's Memorial of the
Reformation, p. 31.

[ocr errors][ocr errors][ocr errors][merged small][merged small][ocr errors]



ving, "O Jane! if you should live 30 or 40 years more, God can keep you from sin, and take you to heaven as well then as now: do not dispute him, he is faithful." She was soon after led to rejoice in the hope, that he who had begun a good work, would also perfect it.

JANE LAYCOCK was born at Upper-Shaw-Booth, near Luddenden, in the parish of Halifax, June 30, (O. S.) 1737. Her parents, William and Sarah Davison, were regular, attendants on the ministry of the Rev. Mr. Smith, of Mixenden- In 1772, Jane was married to chapel. Jane considered her parents Jonas Laycock; and continued his as possessed of true piety. When wife for sixteen years. During this her father lay on his death-bed, Mr. period of her life, this good woman Smith observed to him, "I have not resided at Heaton, near Bradford, a more upright Christian comes into and with her husband constantly my chapel." To this Mr. Davison attended on the public ministrations replied, "I fear you have not a of the Rev. W. Crabtree. The lagreater hypocrite." These fears bours of this holy man of God were were, by all who knew him, consi- rendered of lasting profit to her dered as groundless: but the best mind. These years of her life were of men have their fears. Jane was, spent in great conjugal happiness; at an early age, instructed by her but in the year 1788, a painful proparents to maintain an inviolable vidence bereaved her of her hus regard to truth. This preserved her band, and she was left a widow. from many of the extravagancies of After having spent thirteen years in youth. In her youth, our friend was her widowhood state, she was again warmly impressed with the worth of married in 1801, to a person of the her soul, under the ministry of that same name as her former husband, indefatigable labourer in the Lord's Jonas Laycock. Perhaps the piety vineyard, the Rev. G. Whitfield; of our late friend never appeared she also attended regularly on the more evidently in exercise than now. ministry of the Rev. W. Grimshaw, For many years her latter husband of Haworth. These apostolic men, was entirely deprived of his sight, Jane heard at every opportunity: and was not a little fretful in his she was diligent, serious, and exem- situation; but by attentions the plary in all her conduct. In 1769, most assiduous, Jane strove to she lived with Mr. Thomas Hill, of smooth his asperities, to cheer his Wilsdon-Hill: at this period it solitude, and to alleviate his bur, pleased God to visit her with an dens. Humble, obliging, courteous, alarming affliction. Her hopes, and gentle, she watched over her which it appears rested upon her partner with the tenderest care; own good works, now all forsook spent the little she had collected her, and fled. She thought death whilst a widow, on his support, and was at hand, and had no doubt but cheerfully laboured to prevent his her soul would be lost for ever. All necessities. Prior to this period, was dark as darkness itself; but it Jane and her husband had become pleased her heavenly Father to lead residents at Shipley, near Bradford. her to the Lamb of God. Her own At the Baptist chapel in this village vileness was clearly discovered, and she constantly attended; and in a a sight of the Saviour from sin was few years after her second marriage, unspeakably precious. She now was again left a widow. But became concerned at the apprehen- though a widow, and in great posions of recovery, lest she should verty, her mildness of temper, and again return to folly. Mrs. Hill re- godly simplicity, procured so many lieved her anxious mind by obser-friends, that her wants were sup

[ocr errors]


plied abundantly, and all the com- | Lord's-day afternoon, November 16, to an auditory truly impressed that an exemplary Christian was moved from us to her Father's kingdom. Shipley.


forts of life freely imparted. The writer of this paper could mention, were he not expressly forbidden, by the modest benevolence which covets concealment, instances of attention and profuse kindness to this poor woman, of a pleasing kind. In the year 1816, our aged friend first expressed her strong desire to become a member of the Baptist church at Shipley. At the proposal, the pastor of that church hesitated: Jane was in her 80th year, so feeble as to be almost incapable of standing alone, and on the brink of the grave. The good woman saw his hesitation, and rebuked his timidity by the following remarkable words, Are you afraid that I should die in the water? If I should do so, I shall be as near heaven there as on my bed; and, surely, it cannot be unhappy to die in the way of duty! I must be baptized unless you will not baptize me; it is my duty to follow my Lord!" Accordingly she was baptized, August 9, 1816. To her this was a day of triumph; though weighed down with infirmities, she rejoiced in the God of her salvation. Her mind, however, was not always serene; she had fears, and sometimes mourned in darkness: yet for more than a year she maintained this conflict in hope; but in September, 1817, she was finally released from all her fears, and was never after harassed by them. She then remarked, I believe God has given me true faith; and that he will never leave me, nor forsake me. I am also persuaded, he will never suffer my mind to be beclouded again, but will keep me to the end. He has done much for me, both for soul and body; I am truly thankful! Oh what friends have I had: how am I blessed! have done nothing in word, or in deed, that can recommend me to God. 1 am a poor sinner, but I trust in the Lord Jesus: he alone is my hope, my only Saviour, and my portion. Thus lived, and thus died, Jane Laycock, November 4, 1817. Genuine piety made her happy in affliction, honourable in poverty, and triumphant in death. Her pastor preached her funeral sermon on




J. M.

SARAH TITLEY, of Bradford, Yorkshire, died on the 23d of July, having entered the twelfth year of her age. She was a child of great simplicity and thoughtfulness, combined with what was amiable and engaging; and when about eight years of age, she discovered evident traces of a mind deeply impressed with a sense of the reality and importance of divine things. She read such pious books as were suited to her years, such as Bunyan's Pilgrim's Progress, Janeway's Token for Children, and Rowland Hill's Village Dialogues with great attention, but manifested a still greater delight in her Bible than in any of them, often repeating that line of a hymn she had been taught—

"Precious Bible! what a treasure!"* She often expressed to her mother her fears that her soul would be gathered with sinners, and wished to know whether Jesus Christ would save her; and on being told that he came into the world to save sinners, and would save all that saw their need, and who applied to him for salvation, the information gave her great satisfaction. She discovered a strong and increasing attachment to godly people, and was particularly fond of an aged member of the church to which her parents belong.

From this period to the commencement of her illness she continued to give proofs of the same pious temper, while she discovered no traces whatever of affectation or singularity in her general deportment, except what lay in a serious guard against whatever was evil. She was an attentive hearer of the word, and when any thing was ad vanced by the preacher particularly suited to her age and circumstances, it seldom failed to make a manifest

[ocr errors]
« VorigeDoorgaan »