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thought I would try to do something with them that might be of use to others who should hear them. I appointed a service on a week-day, and catechised the children before the congregation. It was very hard work. I could not for a long while get the children to speak audibly and distinctly, and I was obliged to answer three-quarters of the questions myself. However, you will always have a sharp lad or two among 120 children, and 'Jack' made a good hit now and then, and Tom' now and then, and the parents were pleased. Besides which, as the parents sat in the pews close to the aisles, where the children were placed, I could sometimes ask them a question, and often got avery pertinent answer. But then came Dr. Bell, and I got a class that could read fluently, and with correct emphasis and expression, and thenceforth I had ground to stand upon."-pp. 3, 4.
In commending, as we do most cordially, this little work to the attention of the parochial clergy in general, and with it, of course, the exercise of which it treats, we are commending undoubtedly difficult duty. But these are not days, we believe, in which the Clergy of the Church of England will shrink from a duty because it is difficult. We express our conviction that catechising is the great instrument, under God, for effecting the regeneration of our country, and saving us from the woeful effects of the infidel liberality, the false and hollow charity, which seem destined to constitute the peculiar trial of Christ's Church in this and the succeeding generation. We do not stay to inquire how often. this exercise can be attended to; or how far it may be made to consist, in particular cases, with the other labours of the Clergy. But (in the words of the late Archdeacon of Salop), "to men in earnest in their calling, whose care is not to justify their own failures, but to avail themselves as they may of every facility for usefulness, to such we commend an instrument which may very well aid their purpose."
ART. VIII. 1. Essays and Tales. By JOHN STERLING. Collected and Edited, with a Memoir of his Life. By JULIUS CHARLES HARE, M.A., Rector of Hurstmonceux.
In 2 vols.
2. The Mission of the Comforter, and other Sermons with Notes: By JULIUS CHARLES HARE, M.A., Archdeacon of Lewes. London: J. W. Parker.
3. The Life of Joseph Blanco White. Written by himself. With portions of his Correspondence. Edited by JOHN HAMILTON THOM. In 3 vols. London: Chapman.
4. The Constitution of the Church of the Future, &c. By CHRISTIAN CHARLES JOSIAS BUNSEN, D.Ph., D.C.L. London: Longmans.
5. The Life and Correspondence of Thomas Arnold, D.D., &c. By A. P. STANLEY, M.A. In 2 vols. London: Fellowes.
6. The Life of Jesus Christ, &c. By AUGUSTUS NEANDER. London Low.
THE Volumes which stand first on the list of books with which we have headed these pages are not without interest, as the memorials of a cultivated intellect, though not of any very high order, and of a disposition which appears to have attracted the sympathies of a large circle of friends. But it is not in reference to the intellectual, or even the moral aspect of this work, in itself, that we pause for a while on its contents. We look at them indeed as affording distressing evidence of studies misdirected, talents misapplied, and faith subverted; but we deem them calculated to afford a not unseasonable warning against the insidious approaches of infidelity, under the guise of superior philosophical enlightenment and liberation of thought from needless restraints. Mr. Hare has so far done good service by the publication of this work, although not exactly in the way perhaps. which he had in view in collecting the writings of his pupil, and giving them to the world. He is indeed so far led away by his sympathy with Sterling, as to hold him up to admiration as a bold and fearless investigator of truth, and a leader in the cause of progress. His errors are carefully extenuated, and the reader is taught to abstain from passing any condemnation on his conduct and opinions. The connexions subsisting between Mr. Hare and Mr. Sterling were very intimate. Standing in the relation
of tutor and pupil, subsequently of rector and curate, and allied by the most intimate friendship, and even by family connexion; we can of course understand, and make allowance for, much of what might otherwise have surprised us in this book. But we must refrain from following the train of observations to which we might here be led, and reserve them for a more fitting place.
Mr. Sterling, as we learn from his biography, became, at Cambridge, the associate of Mr. Trench and Mr. Maurice; with the latter of whom he became connected by marriage, and to whom he was greatly indebted for the formation of his views. He commenced life as a follower of that negative system in reference to religion, which distinguished the Edinburgh Reviewers thirty years ago-i. e., in fact, as a sceptic. Subsequently he became, under the influence of Coleridge, Archdeacon Hare, &c., more reconciled to Christian doctrines, but he eventually reverted to the negative system, under the guidance of Carlyle and of the German writers Schleiermacher, Strauss, &c.
Mr. Hare admits that "there was always a broad divergence in his opinions, from those which are held by the great body of the Church, the very same divergence of which Coleridge speaks in his Confessions of an Enquiring Spirit'" (p. 129). This related to the inspiration of Scripture, which Sterling denied. Whether this includes the period previous to Sterling's ordination in 1834, we cannot positively say; but it appears from the narrative, that Archdeacon Hare had several years before urged Sterling to take holy orders, at a period when he must have been conscious that "the tendency of his early education was negative." When a person holding Archdeacon Hare's situation tells us that he has strongly urged a man of sceptical and unsound views to take holy orders, a man with whose opinions he was fully acquainted-we must say that an encouragement is at once held out to any amount of indifference, however criminal, in the choice and recommendation of candidates for holy orders. What condition can be more essential to the due exercise of the Christian ministry, than a firm belief in the doctrines of Christianity? Such was not a qualification at any time possessed by Mr. Sterling.
Mr. Sterling was obliged, in consequence of the state of his health, to relinquish the active duties of his calling, in a few months after his ordination as Mr. Hare's curate. His time was
thenceforward spent in literary undertakings, chiefly in writing for periodicals; while his studies lay for the most part in German theology, which Mr. Hare and Mr. Maurice have recommended as calculated to improve our own, and which Mr. Hare's curate
pursued with a zeal not inferior to that of his friends. In his latter years, he relinquished theological studies for the most part, and gave himself up to poetry and tales of fiction; but his views on religious matters were of a very decided complexion, and his anxiety for the overthrow of existing beliefs and Churches was overwhelming.
It was, doubtless, the boldness and speculativeness of his views which gathered around him the friendship of a host of congenial minds, sympathizing in the general complexion of their philosophical and theological tendencies, though separated by stronglymarked differences in points of detail. We only miss one name from the circle who ought to have held a conspicuous place there, we mean Blanco White. But the names of Hare, Bunsen, Carlyle, Coleridge, Einerson, Thirlwall, Maurice, Francis Newman, John Mill, Samuel Wilberforce, Arnold, and Trench, are familiar to all the readers of this work, as the friends and associates of Mr. Sterling, the subjects of his warmest admiration and deepest sympathies. In the case of Mr. Trench, we are led to conclude that the develop ment of Mr. Sterling's religious tendencies was a subject of some material difference between them. The connexion of Mr. Sterling with his friends is not uninteresting or unimportant in any point of view. His life reveals a link between writings and doctrines, which we mentally class together almost involuntarily, notwithstanding their differences in many points, but which we could hitherto only connect by their tendencies. In Sterling's life, however, these various systems are brought together as parts and offshoots of one great movement, each playing its part, and allied by secret ties of sympathy with the rest.
We proceed to extract a few interesting passages. In allusion to his residence at Cambridge, we find the following:
"The greatest benefit, and the most lasting, derived from the years spent at college, often lies in the friendships formed there. This was eminently the case with Sterling. Of those with whom he lived familiarly, several continued his intimate friends through life, especially Richard Trench and Frederick Maurice, both of whom he loved and revered with an affection such as can only spring from a strong and deep heart. He often declared that to the latter, with whom he was afterwards connected by their marrying two sisters, he owed more than to any other man except Coleridge. Writing to me in 1829, while they were writing together for the Athenæum, he said, 'Of what good you have found in the Athenæum, by far the greater part is attributable to him. When I have done any good, I have seldom been more than a patch of sand to receive and retain the impression of his footstep.' And again, speaking of the Essays which open these volumes; 'the shades VOL. X.-NO. XX.-DEC. 1848.
of the dead are mine; but all that is in them was learnt from Coleridge or Maurice.' With the help of the latter, he gradually emancipated himself from that corrupt and cramping system of opinions in philosophy and taste, which he had brought with him to college."—Vol. i. pp. xiii. xiv.
Are we to understand that the "negative" views of which Mr. Hare speaks were shared by Mr. Sterling's friends? We quote the following as deserving of remark, though not relating to that particular branch of the school to which Mr. Sterling belonged.
"In a letter in 1843, speaking of Arnold, one of the Englishmen of our days whom he most admired, he says, There is a singleness of eye in his writings, which is as like what one conceives of the Deity, as a star to the sun. I know not what higher praise could be given to any mortal."—Vol. i. p. xxx.
"So again in the last years of his life, having just read the Biography of Arnold, he writes, I like, respect, and love the man I certainly am disappointed at the narrowness of his range of thought, his entire want of imagination, of humour, of philosophy, and even of philosophical criticism. And yet how noble a man he was practically! and how clear his view of the moral evils of England."-pp. xxxi. ccxii.
He afterwards asks, "Has all our hope of a better day disappeared with Arnold?" Mr. Hare, in speaking of certain writings of Sterling, says—
"Perhaps the most striking and precious quality in them is the deep sympathy with the errors and faults, and even with the sins of mankind; a sympathy which in different modes characterizes the works of his two great friends, Mr. Maurice and Mr. Carlyle."-p. xxiv.
In allusion to Dr. Thirlwall, Mr. Sterling remarks
"I have read a good deal of Thirlwall's history over again, and have found even more in it than I had supposed. I can name no history in English at all comparable to it for depth and compass, unless-prepare to laugh, Carlyle's.' Mr. Hare adds, 'This admiration for the History of Greece, and for its author's other writings, was often expressed."Vol. i. pp. civ. cv.
The following occurs in one of Mr. Sterling's letters.
"John Mill has now obtained the uncontrolled management of The London Review; and he is very anxious to make it a large and freer kind of organ. He has written to persuade me to contribute; but I have answered him that for several reasons I cannot do so at present." p. cvii,