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HEYLYN'S ANSWER TO BURTON.-MILTON'S PROTErcy.
It was Burton's lot to be loaded by the interested and the prejudiced with every species of indignity, “the poison of dragons, and the cruel venom of asps."a Laud's “subservient instrument,” ever ready “to do the dirty work," and " never to be relied upon where he can gloss over any matter in favour of his patron, or against the Puritans," set on to stigmatize, cum privilegio, in the shape of “A Brief and Moderate Answer to the Seditious and Scandalous Challenges of Henry Burton, late of Friday-street; in the Two Sermons by himn preached on the Fifth of November, 1636; and, in the “ Apology' prefixt before them. By Peter Heylyn. 1 Pet. ii. 13, 14. Lond. 1637." 4to.
« Prefixt before the rest of this load of learned lumber stands a “lordly” imprimatur, “summa approbationis,” from“ Lambeth House," which Milton describes as “so apishly Romanizing, that the word of command was still set down in Latin."c The Preface opens with the
Deut. xxxii. 33. b "The Christian Observer: Conducted by Members of the Established Church,” June, 1837, p. 403.
c Areopagitica. Works, edit. 1833, imp. 8vo. p. 106.-"A resolution had been taken, by command of his Majesty [!] to proceed against the Triumvirate of Libellers, as one fitly calls them, to a public censure, which was like to make much noise amongst the ignorant people. It was thought fit, by the prudent council of Queen Elizabeth, upon the execution of some Priests and Jesuits, that an Apology should be published by the name of Justitia Britannica,' to vindicate the public justice of the state from such aspersions as, by the tongues and pens of malicious persons, should be laid upon it. And, on the like prudential grounds, it was thought expedient that an Answer should be made to the book which seemed most material; and, being so made, should be kept in readiness
customary practice of imputing positive faults, in those who are, or ought to be, under subjection : these “ are not afraid to speak evil of dignities;" they “speak evil of the things they understand not !"a Thus the Heylyns of every age would prejudice their readers, and minionlike, admit of none but passive faults in those whose instruments they are ; and su “ make the king glad with their wickedness, and the princes with their lies.”b Hence the first four pages, and inore, of this “ Moderate" Answerer's Preface are occupied to no profit, but to the subverting" of those who may choose to be led away by them ; the first morsel of honest information arrived at being innbedded so far in, and that mingled with characteristic ingredients. “No times,” he says, “ more full of odious pamphlets ; no pamphlets more applauded, nor more dearly bought, than such as do most deeply wound those powers and dignities to which the Lord hath made us subject.” That is truly, “pamphlets” were never so multiplied as then ; such“ pamphlets” were never sought after so eagerly; and none ever answered their purposes so well! Wherefore ? What made the then “
powers and dignities” so successfully assailable by those paper-pellets ? Surely “those factious spirits, Leighton, and Pryone, and Bastwick, the triumviri, with H. Burton, the dictator,” could not by noise and clamours" alone, have fastened odious scandals,”—and what “scandals” are not “ odious ? "_" on their reverend inother !” It is not for us to answer, “What jealousies and fears, that I may say no worse, have they seditiously infused into people's minds, and thereby turned those weapons on their mother's children, which might have been employed more fitly on the common enemy?” It were bad enough to have barely infused "jealousies and fears ; " but to do it “ seditiously,” must greatly aggravate the evil : however, this enormity "might have been employed somewhat “fitly" against Papists! They were not then,
“ those powers and dignities to which the Lord hath made us subject !" We now say with Heylyn, for once, “egregiun vero laudem, et spolia ampla !"
“ Dictator Burton, áròp tò opovnua řvoequoc' a man in whom the eleinent of fire had the most predominancy; which made that which is zeal in others to be, in him, a zealous fury; the rather, since he had deceived himself in his expectations, and swallowed down(!) those hopes he could not digest!" Such is the horrible monster Heylyn's magic sets before us. We shall not stop to remark on his parallelism between Burton and Ærius ; nor to consider how it is, that because a man entertains a “dislike" of the, so styled, “holy hierarchy," he must of necessity be a “ heretic;" neither shall we stay to inquire why “ his inajesty's old and faithful servant" might not feel grieved that he had been supplanted in his just and honourable expectations by crafty
till the execution of the sentence; to the end that the people might be satisfied
b Hos. vii. 3.
c Tim. ii. 14.
and evil designing courtiers ; neither, again, shall we dwell on a refutation of the charge that Burton's "unlicensed • Babel'” was “guilty of sedition, and tended to incense the Commons against the King." Burton did, indeed, "nonplus” the “great prelate" who originated the charge which Heylyn does but echo: “No, my lord,” said he, “I dedicated my book to the whole Parliament; to wit, to the King and both the Houses. I do not divide the head from the body, my Lord, but I pray God unite thein."a Mute," as Burton tells us Laud was “ hereat," that “Goliath" planted “the foil," in Heylyn's phraseology here; but it was rebutted for that time by the judges granting the “ prohibition," on the pleading of “ Prynne" forsooth, who thereby showed, according to Heylyn, his “strong desire to fill up the measure of his iniquities."
Nowhere else is the immense importance of Burton's labours, infiuence, and success, so fully set forth as in this Moderate" Answerer's Preface. He even resorts to a comparison of Burton with " Faux" and “ Catesby," and yields the superiority of Burton's " pestilent pamphlets" over their “ powder !” thus showing how admirubly the alleged « holy hierarchy" had tutored the minds of the public, to induce them to “swallow down” what Burton chose “ to disgorge !" At last he was “caught" fast hold of by a pursuivant armed with “ letters missire ;" and now it became an audacity that he should“ appeal” to his Majesty's clemency and justice!
“That faction, in the church,” says Heylyn, “ which Master Burton and his copesinates have so much laboured to promote, hath, since the first beginning of it, accused the Church of England of the selfsame crimes whereof they now pronounce her guilty ; nor have they found any new matter wherewithal to charge her, than that which their forefathers had been hammering on in the times before them: yet they cry out with no less violence, but far more malice, than their fathers did, and fill the minds of jealous and distrustful people with doubts and fears of innovations of and in the worship of God, and the whole doctrine of religion ; as if the banks were broken down and Popery were breaking in amain upon us, only because they can no longer be permitted to violate all the orders of God's church here by law established.” God's church, established by human law! So says Heylyn, who also
“ That the world might see, and see how scandalously and seditiously they traduce the church, I was commanded by authority to return an Answer to all the challenges and charges in the said Two Sermons and Apology of Master Burton. For being it was the leading libel in respect of time,—the principal matters in the “News from Ipswich," being borrowed from Master Burton's Sermon,—and that those many which have followed are but a repetition of and a dilating on
Burton's “For God and the King," p. 45. b Ibid. p. 53. c“ News from Ipswich : Discovering certain late detestable Practices of some domineering Lordly Prelates, to undermine the established Doctrine and Discipline of our Church ; extirpate all sincere Preachers and Preaching of God's Word; usher in Popery, Superstition, and Idolatry.—Jere. xxiii. 1.-"
4to. pp. 7. Subscribed, * From Ipswich, Nov. 12, 1636.' Thine in the Lord, Matthew White."
those points which are there contained ; it was conceived that he being answered, the rest would perish of themselves. On this command, I set myself unto the work. Beginning first with the • Apology,' so far forth as it justifieth his said 'Appeal.'
Heylyn's first chapter opens with gibes, and to what reasoning he was about to employ he added the superciliousness of some demi-offcials. “I would fain know what moved you to · Appeal' unto his Majesty, at your first conventing ? . . We must needs conceive there was some special reason in it, which inight induce you to cry out before you were hurt; more than the matter of the Articles' which were read unto you, or your own guilty conscience, which had pre-condemned you. Yes sure; for you except against as well the incompetency of the judges,' as the illegal manner of proceedings in the high commission. The judges' you except against,-excepting those honourable nobles, judges, counsellors of state, which are seldom there, -as
parties in the cause,' and 'adversaries' to your person, 'for the cause' sake.'a . . . Suppose them parties,' and what then ? Then, by the • laws of God and Nature,' as also by the common, canon and civil laws,' they are prohibited from being judges! This is the first crutch (crotchet) your · Appeal halts with, and this will fail you. For, howsoever it be true, in ordinary course, that no man can be judge in his own cause there, where the cause concerns himself in his own particular, yet it is otherwise in a body aggregate, or a public person. Suppose .. that a man within the Liberties of London, should say “A fig for my Lord Mayor ! might not my Lord Mayor clap him in the Compter ? And yet the Parliament, and the judges, and the justices, and the Lord Mayor of London, are as much parties' in these cases, as the archbishop, bishops, chancellors, and the rest of the high commission are, by you, said, and only said, to be in the other! For that they are not parties,' we shall see anon.
“ That which you next attempt, is to prove them 'adversaries;' adversaries of your person, for the cause' sake :' say then, the adversaries of the cause;' let your person' go, as a contemptible thing that provokes no 'adversary!' Yet we will take you with us, to avoid exceptions, and see what proof you have to make them • adversaries' to your person, for the cause' sake. And first, they are your 'adversaries,' because the adversaries of those truths' by you delivered in your sermon.d ... When you leave to speak the truth, . . and fall upon seditious, false, and factious discourses, to inflame the people, and bring them into ill opinion both of their king and those to whom the government of the church is, by him, intrusted, you are no more a preacher, but a prevaricator; a dangerous boutefeu and incendiary, as yon have been hitherto. That this is true, shall be most plainly manifested in the Anatomy of your Serinon-for we will call it so to please you. . .
Apol. p. 6. • Heylyn has transposed canon and civil,” contrary to Burton's order ; an incident, small as it appears, not without significancy.
• A prison in Wood-street, afterward in the Poultry, the site of which is now occupied by a Congregational Church.
# Apol. p. 7.
A second reason which you have to prove them your adversaries,' is, that they have usurped such a 'title' of jurisdiction, as cannot consist with that title of jurisdiction, which the law of the land hath annexed to the crown imperial.' If so, they are the king's adversaries, in the first place; robbing bim of the fairest flower in the regal diadem! . . But, how
it appear unto us ? . . Because,' say you, they do continually exercise their Episcopal jurisdiction, without any Letters Patent' of his Majesty, or his progenitors ; 'in their own names and rights only, not in his Majesty's name and right. . . This being objected to them in that sermon also, we shall there meet with it. One thing I must take with me now, for fear I find it not hereafter. You say, the bishops exercise the Episcopal jurisdiction in their own names and rights only;' not in his Majesty's name and right, to the manisest breach of their oaths. • . The statute 1 Eliz. c. i. uniting all manner of jurisdiction Ecclesiastical whatsoever unto the imperial crown of this realın, enacteth the oath of supremacy and allegiance eo nomine, to that very end and purpose, that none should presume to exercise
Ecclesiastical jurisdiction within this realm, but by virtue of the King's Letters Patent, and in the King's Majesty's name and right.' . . Pray you Sir! was the 'Oath of Allegiance' enacted 1st of Elizabeth. .. It is reported to have been enacted, 3 Jacobi, on the occasion of the Gunpowder Treason. And for the Oath of Supremacy,' made, indeed, 1 Eliz., was it enacted eo nomine, to that 'end and purpose,' as you please to tell us ?b What ? that no bishop might proceed in exercise of his ordinary Episcopal authority, without especial Letters Patent, and in the Queen's Majesty's name and right only ? . . Assuredly, learned Sir! that oath was framed to settle the abolishment of all foreign power and jurisdiction, such as the Popes of Rome had lately practised in this kingdom, and for no other end and purpose. Sir, you are as excellent in the law as in the gospel!"
The next paragraph is so contrived as to mislead any one who should desire to gather Burton's real argument. “Let's on, Sir," says Heylyn, “ to those other Arguments which you have studied, to prove the high commissioners to be your adversaries.'” Here he collects the premises out of three of Burton's paragraphs, and makes them play "handy-dandy;" juinbling the relevant and the irrelevant; and at last, he contrives to let slip the conclusion which he undertook to prove ; the converse of Burton's, that those from whom he appealed were his
adversaries,” and “ so incompetent judges” of him and of his cause.
• Apol. p. 8.
Heylyn has blundered. Burton was, it is true, incorrect in coupling with Oath' in the singular, the phrase 'of Supremacy and Allegiance,' when he intended only the Oath Ist Eliz., as the context shows; for where charging the Bishops with the breach of their oaths,' he means that 'these men,' those against whom he excepts, p. 8, had taken each the oath alluded to; and so in referring to them used the phrase "their oaths.' That this is a just explanation, is confirmed where, seven lines beneath, he employs the phrase "this very Act, which they thus notoriously transgress, is the ground whereupon their Commission in Causes Ecclesias:ical is erected; and that, principally, for the better observation of the said Act, &c."
< See back, vol. i. p. 504.