The Life of John Milton Vol. 3 1643-1649
by
David Masson

Part 4 out of 13



could a check come? The few Independents in the Assembly, just because
they were fighting their own particular battle, had to be cautious
against too great an extension of their lines. Not from _them_,
therefore, but from the freer Independency of the Army, which was in fact
by this time a composition of all or many of the sects, could the check
be expected. Thence, in fact, it did come. In short, while the
Presbyterians in London were in the flush of their first success against
the Sectaries and the Tolerationists, in walked Oliver Cromwell.


CROMWELL'S INTERFERENCE FOR TOLERATION: ACCOMMODATION ORDER OF
PARLIAMENT.

Events had been qualifying Cromwell more and more for the task. His
Independency, or let us call it Tolerationism, had been long known. As
early as March 1643-4, when he had just become Lieutenant-general in the
Earl of Manchester's army, he had been resolute in seeing that the
officers and soldiers in that army should not be troubled or kept down
for Anabaptism or the like. This had been the more necessary because the
next in command under him, the Scottish Major-general Crawford, was an
ardent and pragmatic Presbyterian. "Sir," Cromwell had written to
Crawford on one occasion, when an Anabaptist colonel had been put under
disgrace, "the State, in choosing men to serve it, takes no notice of
their opinions; if they be willing faithfully to serve it, that
satisfies. I advised you formerly to bear with men of different minds
from yourself: if you had done it when I advised you to it, I think you
would not have had so many stumbling-blocks in your way. It may be you
judge otherwise; but I tell you _my_ mind." [Footnote: Carlyle,
Cromwell (ed. 1857), I. p. 148.] Ever since that time there had been a
vital difference between the Presbyterian Major-general Crawford and his
superior, the Lieutenant-general. Gradually, according to Baillie,
Manchester, who was "a sweet, meek man," and greatly led by Cromwell, had
been brought over more to the Presbyterian way by Crawford's reasonings.
It had come to be a question, in fact, whether Cromwell and comfort or
Crawford and precision should prevail in Manchester's army. Marston Moor
(July 2) had settled that. Cromwell, as the hero of Marston Moor, was not
a man to be farther opposed or thwarted; the Independents, who had mainly
won Marston Moor, were not men to submit longer to Presbyterian
ascendancy in the regulation of the army, or to see their large-faced
English chief pestered and counterworked by a peevish Scot. Yes, but
_was_ Cromwell the hero of Marston Moor, or _had_ Marston Moor
been won mainly by the Independents? These were the questions which
Crawford, ever since the battle, had been trying to keep open. He had
been trying, as we have seen, to keep them open in London, though with
but small success; and in the Army his tongue had, doubtless, been louder
and more troublesome. At last Cromwell made up his mind. Either Crawford
must cease to be Major-general of Manchester's army, or _he_ must cease
to be Lieutenant-general. It was on this business that, in September
1644, he came up to London. There had been letters on the subject before
from both parties in the Army, the Independents pressing for Crawford's
dismissal, and the Presbyterians for retaining him. But now Manchester,
Cromwell, and Crawford had, all three, come up personally to argue the
matter out. Cromwell, it appears, was in one of those moods of
ungovernable obstinacy which always came upon him at the right time. "Our
labour to reconcile them," writes Baillie, "was vain: Cromwell was
peremptor; notwithstanding the kingdom's evident hazard, and the evident
displeasure of our [the Scottish] nation, yet, if Crawford were not
cashiered, his [Cromwell's] colonels would lay down their commissions."
There was a plot in all this, Baillie thought. The real purpose of the
Independents was to bring Manchester out of the clutches of
Presbyterianism, or, if that could not be done, to get him to resign, so
that Cromwell might succeed to the chief command; in which case the
Independents would be able to "counterbalance" the Presbyterians, and
"overawe the Assembly and Parliament both to their ends."--It was a very
proper plot, too, as every day was proving. What was the last news that
had reached London? It was that Essex, the General-in-chief, had been
totally beaten by the King in Cornwall (Sept. 1)--Essex himself obliged
to escape by ship, leaving his army to its fate; the horse, under Sir
William Balfour, to fight their way out by desperate exertion; and the
foot, under Skippon, to think of doing the same, but at last to surrender
miserably. Waller's army, also, was by this time nowhere. It had perished
by gradual desertion. Evidently, it had become a question of some moment
for the Parliamentarians _who_ had won Marston Moor, and _who_ should be
chief in Manchester's army. [Footnote: Baillie's Letters, II. 229, 230;
Rushworth V. 699 _et seq._; Whitlocke (ed. 1853), I. 302, 303; Carlyle's
Cromwell, (ed., 1857), I. 158.]

The special business which had brought Cromwell to London was, in fact,
but a metaphor of the general business then occupying the English nation.
Whether a pragmatical Presbyterian Scot should regulate the discipline of
an English Parliamentarian army, and whether the Westminster Assembly
should establish a Presbyterian Inquisitorship over the whole mind of
England, were but forms of the same question. Little wonder, then, that
Cromwell, finding himself in London on the smaller form of the business,
resolved to move also in the larger. And he did. "This day," writes
Baillie on Friday the 13th of September 1644, "Cromwell has obtained an
Order of the House of Commons to refer to the Committee of both Kingdoms
the accommodation or toleration of the Independents--a high and
unexpected Order!" Three days afterwards Baillie is still full of the
subject. "While Cromwell is here," he says, "the House of Commons,
without the least advertisement to any of us [Scottish Commissioners], or
of the Assembly, passes an Order that the Grand Committee of both Houses,
Assembly, and us, shall consider of the means to unite us and the
Independents, or, if that be found impossible, to see how they may be
tolerate. This has much affected us." On turning to the Commons Journals
we find the actual words of the Order: "_Ordered_, That the Committee of
Lords and Commons appointed to treat with the Commissioners of Scotland
and the Committee of the Assembly do take into consideration the
differences in opinion of the members of the Assembly in point of Church-
government, and do endeavour a union if it be possible; and, in case that
cannot be done, do endeavour the finding out some ways how far tender
consciences, who cannot in all things submit to the common Rule which
shall be established, may be borne with, according to the Word, and as
may stand with the public peace, that so the proceedings of the Assembly
may not be so much retarded." Mr. Solicitor St. John appears as the
reporter of the Order. Cromwell, in fact, had quietly formed a little
phalanx of the right men to carry the thing through. The younger Vane was
one of them. Even Stephen Marshall, the Presbyterian and Smectymnuan, had
to some extent aided in the contrivance, without consulting any of his
brethren of the Assembly.

The Order came upon the Presbyterians like a thunder-clap. For, as they
rightly interpreted, it was nothing less than a design to carry in
Parliament a Toleration-clause to be inserted in the Bill for
establishing Presbytery before that Bill was ready to be drafted. Of this
Baillie and his friends complained bitterly. Was it not unfair to
Presbyterianism thus to anticipate so ostentatiously that there would be
many whom it would not satisfy? Was not this framing of a Toleration-
clause, to be inserted into a Bill before the Bill itself was in being,
like a solicitation to the English people to prefer the clause to the
body of the Bill, and so to continue dubious about Presbytery, instead of
cultivating faith in its merits? So argued Baillie and the Presbyterians.
But, indeed, they saw more behind the Accommodation Order. The Toleration
it sought to provide might seem, from the wording, only a moderate
Toleration in the interest of the Independents of the Assembly and their
immediate adherents. From what Baillie says, one infers that Mr.
Solicitor St. John and Mr. Marshall had been drawing up the Order in this
moderate form, and that Cromwell and Vane would fain have had more. "The
great shot of Cromwell and Vane," says Baillie, "is to have a liberty for
all religions, without any exceptions." And of Vane he distinctly says
that he was "offended with the Solicitor" for putting only differences
about Church-government into the Toleration Ordinance, and not also
differences "about free grace, including liberty to the Antinomians and
to all Sects." At all events, he had recently, in the presence of the
Scottish Commissioners themselves, been reasoning "prolixly, earnestly,
and passionately" for universal Toleration. Probably Cromwell and Vane
were content in the meantime with what the long-headed Solicitor saw he
could pass. It could be stretched when necessary. The form was St.
John's, but the deed was Cromwell's. [Footnote: The authorities for the
interesting facts related in this paragraph which seem to have slipped
out of view of most modern writers on the history of the period are
Baillie, II 226, 229, 231, and 236, 237, and Commons Journal, Sept 13,
1644.]

After the check of this Accommodation Order of Sept. 13, 1644, the
Presbyterians of the Assembly seem to have proceeded somewhat more
temperately. Not that they gave up the fight. Their preachers before
Parliament still followed in the strain of Hill and Palmer. In a Fast-day
Sermon before the two Houses on Sept. 12, the day before the Order, the
Smectymnuan, Matthew Newcomen, had again had a slap at Toleration; on
Sept. 25 Lazarus Seaman was again at it, and actually named in his sermon
four dangerous books for Liberty of Conscience, including Goodwin's and
Williams's--the burning of which lest did not seem enough to the Rabbi,
for "the shell is sometimes thrown into the fire when the kernel is
eaten;" the respected Calamy, also a Smectymnuan, is at it again, Oct.
22, telling the Parliament that, if they do not put down Anabaptism,
Antinomianism, and Tolerationism of all religions, then _they_ are
the Anabaptists, the Antinomians, the Tolerationists; Spurstow, a third
of the Smectymnuans, is not done with it on Nov. 5. [Footnote: My notes
from a volume of the Parliamentary Sermons of 1644, kindly lent me by Mr.
David Laing] In the Assembly itself also the question of heresy,
blasphemy, and their suppression, occasionally turned up. Oct. 17, for
example, there was officially before the Assembly the case of a John
Hart, who had been making a reputation for himself in Surrey by this
hideous joke:--"Who made you? My Lord of Essex.--Who redeemed you? Sir W.
Waller.--Who sanctified and preserved you? My Lord of Warwick." This led
to a conversation in the Assembly on the increase of blasphemy, and to a
new remonstrance to Parliament on the subject.[Footnote: Lightfoot's
Notes at date named] Again, on the 22nd of November, there was a report
to the Assembly of some fresh "damnable blasphemies," more of the
doctrinal kind, and savouring of Mortalism and Clement Wrighter.
[Footnote: Lightfoot's Notes at date named.] Nor had the Assembly agreed
to let even ordinary Anabaptism and Antinomianism alone; for they had
again memorialized Parliament on the subject, and had had a rather
satisfactory response from the Commons, Nov. 15, in the form of a promise
to consider the whole matter, and an order meanwhile that no person
should be permitted to preach unless he were an ordained minister in the
English or some other Reformed Church, or a probationer intending the
ministry and duly licensed by those authorized by Parliament to give such
licence. [Footnote: Commons Journals, Nov. 15, 1644.] On the whole,
however, from September 1644 onwards through October and November, to the
end of the year, there was rather an abatement of the inquisitorial zeal
of the Assembly.


PROGRESS OF THE ASSEMBLY'S MAIN WORK: PRESBYTERIAN SETTLEMENT VOTED BY
PARLIAMENT.

In those months, indeed, the Assembly was unusually active over its main
work. For, though we have seen chiefly the spray of its miscellaneous
interferences with affairs, it must be remembered that it had been called
together for a vast mass of substantial work, and that it had been
steadily prosecuting that work, in Committees, Sub-committees, and the
daily meetings of the whole body. The work expected by Parliament from
the Assembly consisted of (1) the compilation of a _Confession of Faith_,
or _Articles of Religion_, which should supersede the Thirty-nine
Articles, and be the Creed of the new National Church of England about to
be established; (2) the composition of a _Catechism_ or _Catechisms_,
which should be a manual or manuals for the instruction of the people,
and especially the young, in the theology of the Articles; (3) the
devising of a _Frame of Discipline or Church-government_, to come in lieu
of Episcopacy, and form the constitution of the new National Church; and
(4) the preparation of a _Directory of Worship_, which should supplant
the Liturgy, &c., and settle the methods and forms to be adopted in
worship, and on such occasions as baptisms, marriages, and funerals. Here
was a mass of work which, at the ordinary rate of business in
ecclesiastical councils, might well keep the Assembly together for two or
three years. What amount of progress had they made at the date at which
we have now arrived?

Naturally, on first meeting, they had begun with the business of the new
Articles, or Confession of Faith. The particular form in which, by the
order of Parliament, they had addressed themselves to this business, was
that of a careful revision of the Thirty-nine Articles. With tolerable
unanimity (_antŔ_, pp. 5, 6 and 18,19), they had gone on in this
labour for three months, or till Oct. 12,1643; by which time they had
Calvinized fifteen of the Articles. [Footnote: Whoever wants to compare
the Westminster Assembly's Calvinized Version of the first fifteen
Articles with the original Articles will find the two sets printed
conveniently in parallel columns in _History of the Westminster
Assembly of Divines_ (1842), published at Philadelphia, U.S., by the
"Presbyterian Board of Publication."] Then, however, they had been
interrupted in this labour. The Scottish League and Covenant having come
into action, and the Scottish Commissioners having become an influence at
the back of the English Parliament, the Assembly had been ordered to
proceed to what seemed the more immediately pressing businesses of the
new Model of Church-government and the new Directory of Worship. The
business of a Confession of Faith thus lying over till it could be
resumed at leisure, the Assembly had, for more than a year, been occupied
with the Church-government question and the Directory. What tough and
tedious work they had had with the Church-government question we have
seen. Still, even in this question they had made progress. Beating the
Congregationalists by vote on proposition after proposition, the
Presbyterian majority had, by the end of October 1644, carried all the
essentials of Presbytery through the Assembly, and referred them
confidently to Parliament. [Footnote: Baillie, II. 232.] Add to this that
a new Directory of Worship had been drawn up. The Congregationalist
Brethren had been far more acquiescent in this business; and, though many
points in it had occasioned minute discussion, the Assembly were able, on
the 2lst of November, to transmit to Parliament, unanimously, a
Directory, in which everything in the shape of Liturgy or Prelatic
ceremonial was disallowed, and certain plain forms, like those of the
Scottish Presbyterian worship, prescribed instead. [Footnote: Baillie,
II. 240 and 242-3] By the end of 1644, therefore, the Westminster
Assembly had substantially acquitted itself of two out of four of the
pieces of work expected from it by Parliament--the _New Directory of
Worship_ and the _New Frame of Church-government_; and it only
remained for Parliament to sanction or reject what the Assembly had
concluded under these two heads. During November and December 1644, and
January 1644-5, accordingly, there was much discussion in both Houses of
all the points of Religion and Church-government which the new Directory
and the new Frame were to settle. The debates of the Houses during these
months, indeed, were very much those of the Assembly over again--the
Lords and Commons, though laymen, examining each proposition and each
clause for themselves, and insisting on proofs from Scripture and the
like. January 1644-5 was the great month. On the 4th of that month an
Ordinance from the Commons passed the Lords, abolishing the use of the
Prayer-book, adopting and confirming the new Westminster Directory, and
ordering it to be printed. On the 23rd of the same month, the following
Resolutions were adopted by the Commons:--

"_Resolved_: That there shall be fixed Congregations--that is, a
certain company of Christians to meet in one Assembly ordinarily for
public worship: when believers multiply to such a number that they cannot
conveniently meet in one place, they shall be divided into distinct and
fixed Congregations, for the better administration of such ordinances as
belong to them, and the discharge of mutual duties.

"_Resolved_: That the ordinary way of dividing Christians into
distinct Congregations, and most expedient for edification, is by the
respective bounds of their dwellings.

"_Resolved_: That the minister and other Church-officers in each
particular Congregation shall join in the government of the Church in
such manner as shall be established by Parliament.

"_Resolved_: That these officers shall meet together at convenient
and set times for the well-ordering of the affairs of that Congregation,
each according to his office.

"_Resolved_: That the ordinances in a particular Congregation are
Prayer, Thanksgiving, and Singing of Psalms; the Word read, though there
follow no immediate explication of what is read; the Word expounded and
applied; Catechising; the Sacraments administered; Collection made for
the Poor; Dismissing of the people with a Blessing.

"_Resolved_: That many particular Congregations shall be under one
Presbyterial government.

"_Resolved_: That the Church be governed by Congregational,
Classical, and Synodical Assemblies, in such manner as shall be
established by Parliament.

"_Resolved_: That Synodical Assemblies shall consist both of
Provincial and National Assemblies."

Dry and simple as these Resolutions look, they were the outcome of
fifteen months of deliberation, and they were of immense significance.
They declared it to be the will of Parliament that England thenceforth
should be a Presbyterian country, like Scotland. Just as Scotland was a
little country, with her 1,000 parishes or so, the inhabitants of each of
which were understood to form a particular congregation, meeting statedly
for worship, and taught and spiritually disciplined by one Minister and
certain other church-officers called Lay Elders, so England was to be a
large country of some 10,000 or 12,000 parishes and parochial
congregations, each after the same fashion. As in Scotland the parishes
or congregations, though mainly managing each its own affairs, were not
independent, but were bound together in groups by the device of
Presbyteries, or periodical courts consisting of the ministers and ruling
elders of a certain number of contiguous parishes meeting to hear appeals
from congregations, and otherwise exercise government, so the ten times
more numerous parishes of England were similarly to be grouped into
Presbyteries or Classes (Classes was the more favourite English term),
each Classis containing some ten or twelve congregations. Thus in London
alone, where there were about 120 parishes, there ought to be about
twelve Classes or Presbyteries. Finally, the Presbyteries were to be
interconnected, and their proceedings supervised, as in, Scotland, by
periodical Synods of the ministers and ruling elders of many
Presbyteries--say of all the Presbyteries of one large shire, or of
several small shires taken as a convenient ecclesiastical district. In
Scotland the practice was for all the ministers and ruling elders within
the bounds of a Provincial Synod to attend the Synod personally; but in
England, on account of her size, the plan of Synods of elected
representatives might be advisable--which, however, would not affect the
principle. In any case, the annual National Assembly of the whole Church,
which, under the new Presbyterian system, would be to England the same
Ecclesiastical Parliament that the General Assembly in Edinburgh was to
Scotland, must necessarily, like that Assembly, be constituted
representatively. Nothing less than all this was implied in the eight
Resolutions of the Commons on Friday, Jan. 23, 1644-5. By an order of
Monday the 27th, however, Mr. Rous, who had been commissioned to report
the Resolutions to the Lords, was instructed to report only four of
them,--the 3rd, the 6th, the 7th, and the 8th. The answer of the Lords on
the following day was "That this House agrees with the House of Commons
in all the Votes now brought up concerning Church-government." In
refraining from sending up all the eight Votes, the Commons appear to
have thought it best not yet positively to determine against the
Congregationalists on one or two points, including that of strict
parochialism. But in the four Votes sent up to the Lords and agreed to by
them, all the essentials of Presbytery were involved; so that from the
28th of January 1644-5 it stood registered in the Acts of Parliament that
England should, be Presbyterianized. [Footnote: Commons and Lords
Journals of dates given.]

At this stage of the proceedings we may leave the Westminster Assembly
for a while. On the 26th of December, Johnstone of Warriston and Mr.
Barclay had left it, in order to be present at the Scottish Convention of
Estates, which was to meet at Edinburgh on the 7th of January; [Footnote:
Baillie, II. 251.] and on the 6th of January Baillie and Gillespie left
it, on a weary horse-journey, in order to be present at the General
Assembly of the Scottish Kirk, which was to meet at the same place on the
22nd. [Footnote: Baillie, II. 250.] Henderson and Rutherford remained in
London. What tidings were carried by the Scottish Commissioners to
Edinburgh of the great things which the Lord had up to that time done for
the cause of Presbytery and true Religion in England may be read to this
day in the records of the Scottish Parliament and the Scottish General
Assembly of 1645. Baillie's exulting speech in the Assembly is really
worth reading. [Footnote: It is given in Baillie's Letters, II. 255-257.
But see also Letter of Scottish Commissioners and Letter of Westminster
Assembly to the Scottish General Assembly, both of date Jan. 6, 1645, in
Acts of General Assembly of the Kirk.] Suffice it to say here that there
was great rejoicing in Edinburgh and in all Scotland; that the General
Assembly unanimously ratified the Westminster Directory of Worship (Feb.
3) and the Westminster Frame of Presbyterial government (Feb. 10); and
that the Scottish Parliament (Feb. 6) approved and established, for
Scotland, the Directory already established for England. Let us add that
Baillie had a pleasant holiday, revisited his wife and family in Glasgow,
and would fain have been allowed to remain in his own country
thenceforth. But this could not be. Both he and Gillespie had to obey
orders, and prepare, with sighs, for a return to London in March.


STATE OF THE WAR: SELF-DENYING ORDINANCE AND NEW MODEL.

During the six months the transactions of which, as far as the
Westminster Assembly was concerned, we have thus presented in summary
(Sept. 1644-March 1645), the hurry of more general events in England had
been very marked. Of what use was the preparation of a Presbyterian Form
of Church-government, and a Presbyterian Directory of Worship, for
England, so long as it remained uncertain whether England might not be
once again the King's, and the Parliament under his feet? And, really,
there was this danger. Marston Moor had been a great blow to the King: it
had spoilt his cause in the whole of the North. But Essex's defeat in
Cornwall (Sept. 1) had come as a terrible set-off, In the confidence of
that victory, the King was on the move out of the West back to Oxford
(Sept. 30), sending proclamations before him, and threatening a march
upon London itself. The taking of Newcastle by the Scots under Leven
(Oct. 19) was a return of good fortune for the Parliament at the right
moment; at least it provided the Londoners again with their long-missed
coals. But it had come now to be a contest between the King's main force
and the combined forces of Parliament in the South-English midlands. In
the second Battle of Newbury (Sunday, Oct. 27) the issue was tried--the
Earl of Manchester's army, with Cromwell second in it, having been joined
to the recruited armies of Essex and Waller in order to resist the King.
Manchester and Waller were the real Parliamentary commanders, Essex being
ill. It was a severe battle. The King had, on the whole, the worst; but
he got off, as Cromwell and others thought, less thoroughly beaten than
he ought to have been. [Footnote: Rushworth, V. 721-730; Carlyle's
Cromwell (ed. 1857), I. l59.] From the date of this second Battle of
Newbury, accordingly, Cromwell became the spokesman of a dissatisfaction
with the military and political conduct of the cause of Parliament as
deep and as wide-spread throughout England as that dissatisfaction with
the conduct of the religious question of which he had made himself the
spokesman six weeks before.

What Cromwell had thought when he moved the Accommodation Order of Sept.
13 had been virtually this: "Here are you discoursing about strict
Presbytery and what differences from it may be tolerated, when the real
question is whether we shall have a free England for Presbytery or
anything else to exist in, and how we can carry with us all honest men
who will fight to make such a free England." And now, when, after the
second Battle of Newbury, he again reappeared in Parliament, it was in
this prolongation, or profounder state, of the same mood:--"The time has
come when I must speak out. We, of this nation, must turn over a new
leaf. We have been fighting the King now for more than two years, and we
are very much as we were when we began. And why? Because the men who
command our armies against the King do not want really to beat him;
because they want only to _seem_ to be beating him; because the
picture they love to look on, as their heaven on earth to come, is a
picture of their gracious sovereign, after he has been beaten no more
than could be helped, surrounded by themselves as his reconciled and
pardoned ministers and chatting pleasantly with them over the deeds of
the campaigns. I say nothing personally of my Lord of Essex, or of Sir
William Waller: they are most honourable men. But I speak generally as I
feel. If the King is to be beaten, it can only be by generals who want to
beat him, who will beat him to bits, who will use all means to beat him,
who will gladly see in their armies the men who have the right
_spirit_ in them for beating him. Are these the Presbyterians only?
I trow not. I know my men; and I tell you that many of those that you
call Independents, that you call Anabaptists, Sectaries, and what not,
are among the stoutest and godliest in England, and will go as far as
any. Some weeks ago I complained to you of Major-general Crawford,
because he would trouble these men, and would have no soldiers of
Parliament in my Lord Manchester's army that did not agree with his own
notions of Religion and Church-government. _Now_ I complain of my
Lord Manchester himself. In this last Battle of Newbury, I tell you, the
King was beaten less than he might have been. He was allowed to get off.
I advised pursuing him, and my Lord Manchester would not. It was that
over again which has been from the first. And now I speak out what has
long been in my mind, and what brave men in thousands are thinking.
Before the Lord, we must turn over a new leaf in this War. We must have
an Army of the right sort of men, and men of the right sort to command
that Army."

This is a purely imaginary speech of Cromwell's; but it is an accurate
expression of several months of English history. The shrewdest of men at
all times, and also the most sincere, he was yet always the most
tempestuous when the fit time came, and it was the characteristic of his
life that he carried everything before him at such times by his bursts
and tempests. There can be no doubt that, after the second Battle of
Newbury, Cromwell was in one of his paroxysms. Of his vehemence against
Manchester at that time, and of Manchester's recriminations on him, one
may read at large in Rushworth and elsewhere. [Footnote: Rushworth, V.
732-736; Carlyle's Cromwell (ed. 1857), I. 159, 160.] The brief account
of Baillie, who had not yet left London, and was in the centre of the
whole affair, will be sufficient here. "Lieutenant-general Cromwell,"
writes Baillie, Dec. 1, "has publicly, in the House of Commons, accused
my Lord of Manchester of the neglect of fighting at Newbury. That neglect
indeed was great; for, as we now are made sure, the King's army was in
that posture that they took themselves for lost all-utterly. Yet the
fault is most in justly charged on Manchester: it was common to all the
general officers then present, and to Cromwell himself as much as to any
other. Always my Lord Manchester has cleared himself abundantly in the
House of Lords, and there has recriminate Cromwell as one who has avowed
his desire to abolish the nobility of England; who has spoken
contumeliously of the Scots' intention in coming to England to establish
their Church-government, in which Cromwell said he would draw his sword
against them; also against the Assembly of Divines; and has threatened to
make a party of Sectaries, to extort by force, both from King and
Parliament, what conditions they thought meet. This fire was long under
the emmers; now it's broken out, we trust, in a good time. It's like, for
the interest of our nation, we must crave reason of that darling of the
Sectaries [_i.e._ bring Cromwell to a reckoning], and, in obtaining
his removal from the army--which himself by his over-rashness has
procured--to break the power of that potent faction. This is our present
difficile enterprise: we had need of your prayers." [Footnote: Baillie,
II. 243-245.] In this account Baillie mixes up the proceedings in the
Commons on the 25th of November when Cromwell exhibited his charge
against Manchester, and in the Lords a few days after when Manchester
gave in his defence and countercharge, with current gossip, apparently
true enough, of Cromwell and his awful sayings in private. Evidently
Baillie thought Cromwell had ruined himself. Even the hero of Marston
Moor could not beard all respectable England in this way, and it should
not be the fault of the Scottish Commissioners if he did not find himself
shelved! Little did Baillie know with what great things, beyond all
Scottish power of resistance or machination, Cromwell's fury was
pregnant.

While Baillie was writing the passage above quoted, the Scottish
Commissioners, along with the Lord-general Essex, and some of Essex's
chief adherents, including Denzil Holles and Sir Philip Stapleton, were
consulting how they might trip Cromwell up. At a conference late one
night at Essex-house, to which Whitlocke and Maynard were invited, the
Scottish Chancellor Loudoun moved the business warily in a speech which
Whitlocke mischievously tries to report in its native Scotch--"You ken
vary weele that Lieutenant-general Cromwell is no friend of ours," &c.
"You ken vary weele the accord 'twixt the twa kingdoms" &c. Loudoun
wanted to know, especially from the two lawyers, whether the Scottish
plan of procedure in such cases would have any chance in England, in
other words whether Cromwell could be prosecuted as an _incendiary_;
for "you may ken that by our law in Scotland we clepe him an
_incendiary_ whay kindleth coals of contention and raiseth differences in
the State to the public damage." Whitlocke and Maynard satisfied his
lordship that the thing was possible in law, but suggested the extreme
difficulty there would be in proof, represented Cromwell's great
influence in the Parliament and the country, and in fact discouraged the
notion altogether. Holles, Stapleton, and others were still eager for
proceeding, but the Scots were impressed and thought delay would be
prudent. And so, Whitlocke tells us, the Presbyterian intriguers parted
at two in the morning, and he had reason to believe that Cromwell knew
all that had passed before many hours were over, and that this
precipitated what followed. [Footnote: Whitlocke's Memorials (edit.
Oxford, 1853), I. 3l3 _et seq._]

On Wednesday the 9th of December, at all events, the Commons having met
in grand committee on the condition of the kingdom through the
continuance of the war, there was for a time a dead silence, as if
something extraordinary was expected, and then Cromwell rose and made a
short speech. It was very solemn, and even calm, but so hazy and general
that the practical drift of it could not possibly have been guessed but
for the sequel. Almost the last words of the speech were, "I hope we have
such true English hearts, and zealous affections towards the general weal
of our mother-country, as no members of either House will scruple to
_deny themselves,_ and their own private interests, for the public
good." The words, vague enough in themselves, are memorable as having
christened by anticipation the measure for which Cromwell, as he uttered
them, was boring the way. For, after one or two more had spoken in the
same general strain, Mr. Zouch Tate, member for Northampton, did the duty
assigned him, and opened the bag which contained the cat. He made a
distinct motion, which, when it had been seconded by young Vane, and
debated by others (Cromwell again saying a few words, and luminous enough
this time), issued in this resolution, "That no member of either House of
Parliament shall during the war enjoy or execute any office or command,
military or civil; and that an ordinance be brought in to that effect."
This was on the 9th of December; and on the 19th of that month the
ordinance itself, having gone through all its stages, passed the Commons.
All London was astounded. "The House of Commons," writes Baillie, Dec.
26, "in one hour has ended all the quarrels which was betwixt Manchester
and Cromwell, all the obloquies against the General, the grumblings
against the proceedings of many members of their House. They have taken
all office from all members of both Houses. This, done on a sudden, in
one session, with great unanimity, is still more and more admired by
some, as a most wise, necessary, and heroic action; by others as the most
rash, hazardous, and unjust action that ever Parliament did. Much may be
said on both hands, but as yet it seems a dream, and the bottom of it is
not understood." To the House of Lords the _Self-denying Ordinance_
was by no means palatable. They demurred, conferred with the Commons
about it, and at last (Jan. 15) rejected it. Their chief ground of
rejection being that they did not know what was to be the shape of the
Army to be officered on the new principle, the Commons immediately
produced their scheme in that matter. The existing armies were to be
weeded, consolidated, and recruited into one really effective army of
21,000 men (of which 6,000 should be horse in ten regiments, 1,000 should
be dragoons in ten single companies, and 14,000 should be foot in
regiments of not less than 1,200 each), the whole to cost 44,955_l_.
per month, to be raised by assessment throughout the kingdom. This army,
it was farther resolved by the Commons (Jan. 21), should be commanded in
chief by the trusty and popular Sir Thomas Fairfax, who had done so well
in the North, and, under him, by the trusty and popular Major-general
Skippon, whose character for bull-headed bravery even the disaster in
Cornwall had only more fully brought out. [Footnote: I find, from the
Commons Journals, that there was a division on the question whether
Fairfax should be appointed commander-in-chief of the New Model--the
state of the vote being _Yeas_ 101 against _Noes_ 69, or a majority of 32
_for_ the appointment. The Tellers for the majority were the younger Vane
and Cromwell; for the minority, Denzil Holles and Sir Philip Stapleton.
There was a subsequent division, Feb. 7, on the question whether
Fairfax's choice of officers under him should be subject to Parliamentary
revision. Cromwell was one of the Tellers for the _Noes_--_i.e._ he
wanted Fairfax to have full powers. The other side, however, beat this
time by a majority of 82 against 63. After all it was arranged
satisfactorily between Fairfax and Parliament.] On the 28th of January
the _New Model_ complete passed the Commons. The Lords hesitated about
some parts of it, and were especially anxious for a provision in it
incapacitating all from being officers or soldiers in the new army who
should not have taken the Covenant: there were conferences on this point,
and a kind of compromise on it by the Commons; and on the 15th of
February the _Ordinance for New Modelling of the Army_ was finally
passed. The _Self-denying Ordinance_ was then re-introduced in a changed
form, and it passed the Lords, April 3, 1645. It ordained that all
members of either House who had since November 20, 1640, been appointed
to any offices, military or civil, should, at the end of forty days from
the passing of the Ordinance, vacate these offices, but that all other
officers in commission on the 20th of March, 1644-5, should continue in
the posts they then held.

Thus the year 1645 (beginning, in English reckoning, March 25) opened
with new prospects. Essex, Manchester, Waller, and all the officers under
them, retired into ordinary life, with thanks and honours--Essex, indeed,
with a great pension; and the fighting for Parliament was thenceforward
to be done mainly by a re-modelled Army, commanded by Fairfax, Skippon,
and officers under them, whose faces were unknown in Parliament, and
whose business was to be to fight only and teach the art of fighting.

It was high time! For another long bout of negotiations with the King,
begun as early as Nov. 20, 1644, and issuing in a formal Treaty of great
ceremony, called "The Treaty of Uxbridge," had ended, as usual, in no
result. Feb. 22, it had been broken off after such a waste of speeches
and arguments on paper that the account of the Treaty occupies ten pages
in Clarendon and fifty-six folio pages in Rushworth. It was clear that
the year 1645 was to be a year of continued war. [Footnote: For this
story of the Self-denying Ordinance and the New Modelling of the Army
authorities are--Rushworth, VI. 1-16; Baillie, II. 247; Carlyle's
Cromwell (ed. 1857), I. 160-163. The Uxbridge Treaty is narrated in
Clarendon's Hist. (one-volume ed. 1843), pp. 520-530, and in Rushworth,
V. 787-842.]


PARLIAMENTARY VENGEANCES: DEATH OF LAUD.

Ere we pass out of the rich general history of this year 1644, the year
of Marston Moor, we must take note of a few vengeances and deaths with
which it was wound up. The long-deferred trial of poor Laud, begun March
12, 1643-4, after he had been more than three years a prisoner in the
Tower, and they might have left him there in quiet, had straggled on
through the whole of 1644. The interest in it had run, like a red thread,
through the miscellany of other events. The temper of the people had been
made fiercer by the length of the war, and there was a desire for the old
man's blood. The Presbyterian ministers of the Assembly, I find, fostered
this desire. In that very sermon of Herbert Palmer's before Parliament
(Aug. 13) in which he had called for the extirpation of heresy and
schism, and denounced Milton, there was an express passage on the duty of
"doing justice upon Delinquents impartially and without respect of
persons." [Footnote: Palmer's Sermon, p. 48.] Calamy in his sermon, Oct.
22, followed, and told the Parliament, "All the guilty blood that God
requires you in justice to shed, and you spare, God will require the
blood at your hands." [Footnote: Calamy's Sermon, p. 27.] Mr. Francis
Woodcock, preaching Oct. 30, was even more decided. His sermon, which was
on Rev. xvi. 15, is a very untastefully-worded discourse on the propriety
of always being on the watch so as not to be taken by surprise without
one's garments; and, among the rather ludicrous images which his literal
treatment of the subject suggests, we come upon a passage describing one
of four pieces of raiment which the State ought never to be caught
without. He calls it the "Robe of Justice," and adds, "Would God this
robe were often worn, and dyed of a deeper colour in the blood of
Delinquents. It is that which God and man calls for. God repeats it,
_Justice, Justice_; we, echoing God, cry _Justice, Justice_; and let me
say, perhaps we should not see other garments so much rolled in blood,
did we not see these so little." [Footnote: Woodcock's Sermon, pp 30,
31.] Baillie, I am glad to think, was more tender-hearted. There was,
indeed, one Delinquent for whom Baillie would have had no mercy--Dr.
Maxwell, the Scottish ex-Bishop of Ross, who had published at Oxford, in
the King's interest, "a desperately malicious invective" against Scottish
Presbytery and its leaders. "However I could hardly consent to the
hanging of Canterbury himself, or of any Jesuit," Baillie had written,
July 16, 1644, after his first indignant sight of this book, "yet I could
give my sentence freely against that unhappy liar's [Maxwell's] life."
But, indeed, the Scottish Commissioners and the Scottish nation were
conjoined as parties with the English Presbyterians and the English
Parliamentarians generally (Prynne ruthlessly busy in getting up the
evidence) in the long prosecution of Laud. It was all over on the 10th of
January, 1644-5. On that day Laud, aged 72, laid his head upon the block
on a scaffold in Tower Hill. Hanging had been commuted, with some
difficulty, to beheading. He died brave, raspy, and High-Church to the
last. [Footnote: Rushworth's main account of the trial and last days of
Laud is in Vol. V. pp, 763-786. The "History of the Troubles and Tryal of
William Laud," edited by Wharton, in two vols. folio, appeared in 1695-
1700.]--Minor executions about the same time were those of Hugh Macmahon
and Lord Maguire for their concern in the Irish rebellion and massacre,
Sir Alexander Carew for treachery at Plymouth, and the Hothams, father
and son, for treachery at Hull. One Roger L'Estrange, a younger son of a
Norfolk family, had been condemned to be hanged in Smithfield for an
underhand attempt to win the town of Lynn for the King; but he was
reprieved, lay in Newgate for some years, and lived for sixty years
longer, to be known, even in Queen Anne's time, as Sir Roger L'Estrange,
the journalist.




CHAPTER II.

MILTON AMONG THE SECTARIES, AND IN A "WORLD OF DISESTEEM": STORY OF MRS.
ATTAWAY--SAMUEL HARTLIB, JOHN DURIE, AND JOHN AMOS COMENIUS: SCHEMES OF A
REFORMED EDUCATION, AND PROJECT OF A LONDON UNIVERSITY--MILTON'S _TRACT
ON EDUCATION_, AND METHOD WITH HIS PUPILS--HIS SECOND DIVORCE TRACT,
OR COMPILATION FROM BUCER--MR. HERBERT PALMER'S ATTACK ON MILTON FROM THE
PULPIT--MILTON AND THE STATIONERS' COMPANY: THEIR ACCUSATION OF HIM IN A
PETITION TO THE COMMONS--HIS _AREOPAGITICA_, OR SPEECH FOR THE
LIBERTY OF UNLICENSED PRINTING--ANGER OF THE STATIONERS, AND THEIR
COMPLAINT AGAINST MILTON TO THE LORDS: CONSEQUENCE OF THE COMPLAINT--THE
DIVORCE QUESTION CONTINUED: PUBLICATION OF MR. HERBERT PALMER'S SERMON,
AND FARTHER ATTACKS ON MILTON BY PRYNNE, DR. FEATLEY, AND AN ANONYMOUS
PAMPHLETEER--_TETRACHORDON AND COLASTERION_: THEIR REPLIES TO THE
ASSAILANTS.


Ever since August 1643, when Milton had published his extraordinary
_Doctrine and Discipline of Divorce_, but more especially since Feb.
1643-4, when he had published the second and enlarged edition of it, with
his name in full, and the dedication to Parliament and the Westminster
Assembly, his reputation with orthodox English society had been definite
enough. He was one of those dreadful Sectaries! Nay he was a Sectary more
odious than most; for his was a _moral_ heresy. What was Independency,
what was Anabaptism, what was vague Antinomianism, compared with this
heresy of the household, this loosening of the holy relation on which all
civil society depended? How detestable the doctrine that, when two
married people found they had made a mistake in coming together, or at
least when the husband could declare before God and human witnesses his
irreconcilable dissatisfaction with his wife, then it was right that the
two should be separated, with liberty to each to find a new mate! True,
it was an able man who had divulged this heresy, one who had brought
applauses from Cambridge, who was said to have written beautiful English
poems, who had served the cause of Parliament by some splendid pamphlets
for Church-reformation and against Episcopacy, and who had in these
pamphlets encountered even the great Bishop Hall. All this only made the
doctrine more dangerous, the aberration more lamentable. This Mr. Milton
must be avoided, and denounced as a Sectary of the worst kind! Some said
it was all owing to the conduct of his wife, a rank Royalist, who had
deserted him and gone back to her friends! If that were the case, he was
to be pitied; but perhaps there were two sides to that story too!

There must have been much gossip of this kind, about Milton and his
Divorce Treatise, in the booksellers' shops near St. Paul's, and even
round the Parliament in Westminster, in the early months of 1644. The
gossip may have affected Milton's relations with some of his former
friends and acquaintances. If Bishop Hall, when he first saw the
treatise, and perceived its literary ability, "blushed for his age" that
so "scandalous" a thing should have appeared, and if even Howell the
letter-writer, in his prison, thought it the impudent production of "a
poor shallow-brained puppy," what could Milton's orthodox and reverend
Smectymnuan friends--Marshall, Calamy, Young, Newcomen, and Spurstow--
think or say about it? Shocked they must have been; and, knowing Milton's
temper, and with what demeanour he would front any remonstrances of
theirs, they probably left him alone, and became scarcer in their visits
to Aldersgate Street. It would not do to keep up the Smectymnuan
connexion too visibly after what had happened. Or, if Young could not
break off so easily, but would still call to see his old pupil, and to
talk with old Mr. Milton about the Bread Street days, how the good man
must have yearned to speak sometimes when the old gentleman was out of
the way, and he and Milton were alone. "O my dear Mr. Milton, how much we
are all concerned about that pamphlet! I am not going to argue it with
you; I know you too well, and how little influence my reasonings could
have with you now in any such matter; and it is my comfort at least to be
able to tell some of my Assembly friends that, if they knew you as well
as I do, they would be sure that nothing you do but is done in a great
spirit and with a high intention. But, dear me! it is a terrible opinion
you have broached!" To something like this Milton may have listened, more
or less patiently; or he may have imagined it in Young's mind, if it was
not uttered. The mutual regard between Young and his old pupil did not
suffer so much from the trial but that we find Milton still willing to
acknowledge publicly the connexion that had subsisted between them.

On the whole, it is certain that one consequence of the outcry about
Milton's treatise among the London Presbyterians, and especially among
the city clergy and the Divines of the Assembly, was to drive Milton more
arid more into the society of those who had begun to dislike and to dread
the ascendancy of the Presbyterians. Finding himself, almost from the
first publication of the treatise, as he tells us, in "a world of
disesteem" on account of it, he naturally held intercourse more and more
with those who, though they may not have approved of _his_ particular
heresy, yet, as being themselves voted heretics on other accounts, were
more easy in their judgments of all extreme opinions. I believe, in fact,
that, could Milton's acquaintanceships in London from the winter of 1643-
4 onwards be traced and recovered, they would be found to have been
chiefly among the Independents, Anabaptists, Antinomians, Seekers, and
other Tolerationists. What were the religious opinions of the Lady
Margaret Ley, that "woman of great wit and ingenuity," and her husband
Captain Hobson, "a very accomplished gentleman," with both of whom he was
so intimate about this time, and who, as Phillips tells us, "had a
particular honour for him and took much delight in his company," must be
left to conjecture. [Footnote: It has been in my mind whether the Captain
Hobson who was the Lady Ley's husband, and whom Dagdale describes as "...
Hobson of... in the Isle of Wight, Esq.," can by possibility have been
the same person as the Baptist preacher, Paul Hobson, who was also a
Captain in the Parliamentary Army, and who figures much in Edwards's
_GangrŠna_ and in other books of the time, under the express name of
"Captain Hobson," as a leading Sectary, though Edwards will have it that
he was originally "a tailor from Buckinghamshire" (_antŔ_, p. 148). The
supposition seems so absurd that I hardly like to mention that I spent
hours in turning over Paul Hobson's published sermons and Baptist
treatises in case I might come on any confirmation of it--which I did
_not_.]

From Milton's Sonnet to the Lady Margaret one may safely infer at least
that she was a woman of liberal principles as well as wit. Probably her
house was the resort of a good many of what would now be called the
"advanced" or "strong-minded" Christians of both sexes then in London;
and Milton may there have extended his acquaintance with such, and have
even been an object of peculiar interest to some of one sex, as "that
handsome, fair gentleman, now talking to Lady Margaret, who is a great
scholar and a poet, and whose wife has left him shamefully, so that he
wants to be divorced from her, and has written a book which quite proves
it." Milton's acquaintance with Roger Williams, at all events, is almost
certainly to be dated from Williams's visit to England in 1643-4, when he
was writing his _Bloody Tenent_; and if Milton, at the same time,
did not become acquainted with John Goodwin of Coleman Street, it would
be a wonder.


STORY OF MRS. ATTAWAY.

We must, I am sorry to say, descend lower in the society of London, in
and about 1644, than the Lady Margaret Ley's drawing-room, or the level
of marked men like Williams and Goodwin, if we would understand how
Milton's Divorce opinion had begun to operate, and with what consequences
of its operation his name was associated. The reader may remember a Mrs.
Attaway, mentioned by us among both the Baptists and the Seekers, and as
perhaps the most noted of all the women-preachers in London (_antŔ_,
pp. 149, 153). She was, it seems, a "lace-woman, dwelling in Bell Alley
in Coleman Street," and preaching on week-day afternoons in that
neighbourhood, with occasional excursions to other parts of the city
where rooms could be had. Sometimes other "preaching-women" were with
her, and the gatherings, though at first of her own sex only, soon
attracted curious persons of the other. From the descriptions of what
passed in some of them, it would appear that, though the meetings were
for worship, and there were regular discourses by Mrs. Attaway and
others, free talk and criticism was permitted to all present, so that the
conventicle took on sometimes the aspect of a religious debating society.
Well, Mrs. Attaway, among others, had got hold of Milton's Divorce
Treatise, and had been reading it. "Two gentlemen of the Inns of Court,
civil and well-disposed men," who had gone "out of novelty" to hear her,
afterwards told _GangrŠna_ Edwards of some "discourse they had had
with her." Among other passages she "spoke to them of Master Milton's
_Doctrine of Divorce_, and asked them what they thought of it;
saying "it was a point to be considered of, and that she, for her part,
would look more into it, for she had an unsanctified husband, that did
not walk in the way of Sion, nor speak the language of Canaan." Edwards
does not give the date of this conversation with Mrs. Attaway; and,
though presumably in 1644, it may have been later. He evidently
introduces it, however, in order to implicate Milton in the subsequent
break-down, which he also reports, of the poor woman morally. For, if Mr.
Edwards is to be believed, Mrs. Attaway did "look more into" Milton's
doctrine, and at length acted upon it. Some time in 1645 she abjured her
"unsanctified husband" Mr. Attaway, who, besides being unsanctified, was
then absent in the army, leaving her alone in her lace-shop, and
transferred herself to a man named William Jenney, an occasional
preacher, who was much more sanctified, and was also on the spot. Mr.
Jenney had, unfortunately, a wife already, some children by her, and one
expected; but ho too had been meditating on the Divorce Doctrine, and had
used his Christian liberty. Mr. Edwards had been most particular in his
investigations. He had actually procured from a sure hand the copies of
two letters-taken from the original letters, and compared by a minister
with the originals--one of William Jenney to his wife since he went away
with Mistress Attaway, the other of Mistress Attaway to William Jenney
before his going away." He refrains from printing the letters
_verbatim_, as they were too long; but he gives extracts. "I thought
good to write to you these few lines," writes Jenney to the deserted Mrs.
Jenney, Feb. 15, 1645, "to tell you that, because you have been to me
rather a disturber of my body and soul than to be a meet help for me----
but I silence! And, for looking for me to come to you again, I shall
never come to you again any more. I shall send unto you never no more
concerning anything." If this actually was Jenney's letter, Mrs. Attaway
was worth ten of him, and deserved a better second. "Dearest friend and
well-beloved in the Lord," so she had begun the letter sent to him while
he was still Mrs. Jenney's, and which had got into Mrs. Jenney's hands,
"I am unspeakably sorry in respect of thy sufferings, I being the object
that occasioned it." The sufferings were Mrs. Jenney's bastings of him
because he was always with Mrs. Attaway. In good time, Mrs. Attaway goes
on to say, he would be delivered from these. "When Jehoshaphat knew not
what to do, he looked to the Lord. Let _us_ look to Him, believing
confidently in Him with the faith of Jesus; and no question but we shall
be delivered. In the mean season I shall give up my heart and affections
to thee in the Lord; and, whatsoever I have or am in Him which is our
Head, thou shalt command it." The event, according to Edwards, was that
Mr. Jenney and Mrs. Attaway eloped together, Mrs. Attaway having
persuaded Jenney that she should never die, but that, in obedience to a
heavenly message, they must go to Jerusalem, and repair that city in
anticipation of the bringing of all the Saints to it in ships to be sent
from Tarshish. I suspect they went only to Jericho. [Footnote: This story
of Mrs. Attaway is from Edwards's _GangrŠna_, Part II. pp. 31, 32, 113-
115; _Fresh Discovery_, appended to Second Part of _GangrŠna_, p. 9; and
Third Part of _GangrŠna_, pp. 25-27 and 188. See also Baillie's
_Dissuasive_, Part II. pp. l00 and 123-4.]

All this on the faith of Mr. Edwards's statements in the _GangrŠna_.
But really one should not judge of even a poor enthusiastic woman, dead
two hundred years ago, on that sole authority. Never was there a more
nauseous creature of the pious kind than this Presbyterian Paul Pry of
1644-46. He revelled in scandals, and kept a private office for the
receipt of all sorts of secret information, by word of mouth or letter,
that could be used against the Independents and the Sectaries. [Footnote:
Richard Baxter, as he himself tells us, sent communications from the
country to Edwards. His correspondents were legion, but he concealed
their names.] Yet there was a kind of coarse business-like
conscientiousness in the toad; and, though he was credulous and
unscrupulous in his collections of scandal, I do not believe he invented
documents or lied deliberately. I do not doubt, therefore, that Mrs.
Attaway, whether she went ultimately to Jericho or to Jerusalem, did know
of Milton's Divorce Doctrine, and had extracted suggestions from it
suitable to her circumstances. For, indeed, the Doctrine was likely to
find not a few whose circumstances it suited. Mr. Edwards's book is
strewn with instances of persons who had even found out a tantamount
doctrine for themselves--men who had left their wives, or wanted to do
so, and wives who had left their husbands, and who, without having seen
Milton's treatise, defended their act or their wish on grounds of
religion and natural law. Nay, in the frenzy of inquiry which had taken
possession of the English mind, everything appertaining to Marriage and
the Marriage-institution was being plucked up for fundamental re-
investigation. There were actually persons who were occupying themselves
intently with questioning the forbidden degrees of Consanguinity and
Affinity in marriage, and who had not only come to the easy conclusion
that marriage with a deceased wife's sister is perfectly legitimate, but
had worked out a general theologico-physiological speculation to the
effect that the marriage of near relatives is in all cases peculiarly
proper, and perhaps the more proper in proportion to the nearness of the
relationship. This, I imagine, was a very small sect. [Footnote: But,
unless Edwards and Baillie were both wrong, there _was_ some such
sect. See _GangrŠna_, Part III. p. 187, and, more particularly,
Baillie's _Dissuasive_, Part II. pp. 100 and 122-3.]

Let us re-ascend into more pleasant air. There was one rather notable
person in London, of the highly respectable sort, though, decidedly among
the free opinionists, whose acquaintance Milton did make about this time,
if he had not made it before, and who must be specially introduced to the
reader. This was SAMUEL HARTLIB.


SAMUEL HARTLIB: JOHN DURIE: JOHN AMOS COMENIUS, AND HIS SPECULATIONS
ABOUT A REFORMED EDUCATION--PROJECT OF A LONDON UNIVERSITY.

Everybody knew Hartlib. He was a foreigner by birth, being the son of a
Polish merchant, of German extraction, who had left Poland when that
country fell under Jesuit rule, and had settled in Elbing in Prussia in
very good circumstances. Twice married before to Polish ladies, this
merchant had married, in Prussia, for his third wife, the daughter of a
wealthy English merchant of Dantzic; and thus our Hartlib, their son,
though Prussian-born and with Polish connexions, could reckon himself
half-English. The date of his birth was probably about the beginning of
the century, _i.e._ he may have been eight or ten years older than
Milton. He appears to have first visited England in or about 1628, and
from that time, though he made frequent journeys to the Continent, London
had been his head-quarters. Here, with a residence in the City, he had
carried on business as a "merchant," with extensive foreign
correspondences, and very respectable family connexions. One of his aunts
(sisters of his mother) had married a Mr. Clark, the son of a former Lord
Mayor of London, and afterwards a Sir Richard Smith, Knight and Privy
Councillor, and again a Sir Edward Savage. The other aunt had married a
country gentleman, named Peak. A cousin of Hartlib's, the daughter of the
first and wealthier aunt, Lady Smith, became the wife of Sir Anthony
Irby, M.P. for Boston in the Long Parliament. But it did not require such
family connexions to make Hartlib at home in English society. The
character of the man would have made him at home anywhere. He was one of
those persons, now styled "philanthropists" or "friends of progress," who
take an interest in every question or project of their time promising
social improvement, have always some iron in the fire, are constantly
forming committees or writing letters to persons of influence, and
altogether live for the public. By the common consent of all who have
explored the intellectual and social history of England in the
seventeenth century, he is one of the most interesting and memorable
figures of that whole period. He is interesting both for what he did
himself and also on account of the number and intimacy of his contacts
with other interesting people. [Footnote: Memoir of Hartlib by H. Dircks,
pp 2-6, where there are extracts from an autobiographical letter of
Hartlib to Worthington, written in 1660. "The Diary and Correspondence of
Dr. John Worthington," edited by James Crossley, Esq., F.S.A. (Chetham
Society), contains many letters from Hartlib to Worthington, between 1655
and 1662, but not this one. Mr. Crossley's Diary and Correspondence of
Worthington, so far as it has gone, is one of the best edited books known
to me, the footnotes being very nuggets of biographical lore; and it is
to be regretted that the connected notices of Worthington, Hartlib, and
Durie, postponed by Mr. Crossley until the work should be completed, have
not yet appeared.]

An early friend of Hartlib, associated with him long before the date at
which we are now arrived, was that John Durie of whom, and his famous
scheme for a union of all the Protestant Churches of Europe, we have
already had to take some account (Vol. II. pp. 367-8 and 517-8). Their
intimacy must have begun in Hartlib's native town of Elbing in Prussia,
where, I now find, Durie was residing in 1628, as minister to the English
company of merchants in the town, and where, in that very year, I also
now find, Durie had the great idea of his life first suggested to him by
the Swedish Dr. Godeman. [Footnote: The proof is in statements of
Hartlib's own in a Tract of his published in 1641 under the title of "A
Briefe Relation of that which hath been lately attempted to procure
Ecclesiasticall Peace amongst Protestants."] Among Durie's first
disciples in the idea must certainly have been Hartlib; and it does not
seem improbable that, when Hartlib left Prussia, in or about 1628, to
settle in England, it was with an understanding that he was to be an
agent or missionary for Durie's idea among the English. That he did so
act, and that he was little less of an enthusiast for Durie's idea than
Durie himself, there is the most positive evidence. Thus, in a series of
letters, preserved in the State Paper Office, from Durie abroad to the
diplomatist Sir Thomas Roe, of various dates between April 1633 and Feb.
1637-8, there is incessant mention of Hartlib. In the first of these
letters, dated from Heilbron April 2/12, 1633, Durie, among other things,
begs Roe "to help Mr. Hartlib with a Petition of Divines of those
quarters concerning an Edition of a Body of Divinity gathered out of
English authors, a work which will be exceeding profitable, but will
require divers agents and an exact ordering of the work." In a subsequent
letter Durie speaks of having sent Roe, "by Mr. Hartlib, whose industry
is specially recommended," an important proposition made by the Swedish
Chancellor Oxenstiern; and in still later letters Roe is requested by
Durie to show Hartlib not only Durie's letters to himself, but also
letters about the progress of his scheme which he has enclosed to Roe for
the Archbishop of Canterbury (Abbot) and the Bishop of London (Laud). At
this point, accordingly, July 20, 1633, there is a letter of Roe's to the
Archbishop, from which it appears that Hartlib was made the bearer of
Durie's letter to his Grace. Roe recommends the blessed work in which
Durie is engaged, says that it seems to him and Durie that "there is
nothing wanting but the public declaration of his Majesty and the Church
of England" in its favour, and beseeches the Archbishop "to give his
countenance to the bearer," described in the margin as "Mr. Hartlib, a
Prussian." As Abbot was then within fifteen days of his death, nothing
can have come of the application to him; and, as we already know, his
successor Laud was a far less hopeful subject for Durie's idea, even
though recommended by Roe and explained by Hartlib. In fact, he thought
it mischievous moonshine; and, instead of giving Durie the encouragement
which he wanted, he wrote to the English agent at Frankfort, instructing
him to show Durie no countenance whatever. Durie felt the rebuff sorely.
In England, he writes, he must depend now chiefly on Roe, who could still
do much privately, apart from Laud's approbation. "Mr. Hartlib will send
anything to Durie which Roe would have communicated to him in a secret
way." So in June 1634; and fourteen months later (Aug. 1635) Durie, who
had meanwhile removed to the Hague, again writes to Roe and again relies
on Hartlib. The Dutch, he says, are slow to take up his scheme; and he
can think of nothing better in the circumstances than that Roe in England
should collect "all the advices and comments of the best divines of the
age" on the subject, and have them printed. His very best agent in such a
business would be Hartlib, "a man well known, beloved and trusted by all
sides, a man exceeding painful, diligent and cordially affected to these
endeavours, and one that for such works had lost himself by too much
charity." On independent grounds it would be well to find him "some place
suitable for his abilities, which might rid him of the undeserved
necessities whereunto his public-heartedness had brought him;" but in
this special employment he would be invaluable, being "furnished with the
Polish, Dutch, English, and Latin languages, perfectly honest and trusty,
discreet, and well versed in affairs." In the same strain in subsequent
letters. Thus, from Amsterdam Dec. 7/17, Roe is thanked for having
bestowed some gratuity on Hartlib, and Hartlib is described as, next to
Roe, "the man in the world whom Durie loves and honours most for his
virtues and good offices in Durie's cause." At the same time Durie "prays
God to free Hartlib from his straits and set him a little on horseback,"
and adds, "His spirit is so large that it has lost itself in zeal to good
things." Again, from Amsterdam Jan 25/Feb 4, 1635-6, Durie writes to Roe
and encloses a letter to be sent to his (Durie's) diocesan in Hartlib's
behalf. "Mr. Hartlib," Durie says to Roe, "has furnished his lordship
(the diocesan) with intelligence from foreign parts for two or three
years, and has not yet got any consideration. Perhaps his lordship knows
not how Hartlib has fallen into decay for being too charitable to poor
scholars, and for undertaking too freely the work of schooling and
education of children. If Hartlib and Roe were not in England, Durie
would despair of doing any good." The diocesan referred to is probably
Juxon, Bishop of London; but, two years later, we find Roe recommending
Durie's business and Hartlib personally to another prelate, Bishop Morton
of Durham. Writing from St. Martin's Lane, Feb. 17, 1637-8, Sir Thomas
"presents the Bishop with a letter from Mr. Durie, and one from Durie to
the writer, from which the Bishop may collect his state, and his constant
resolution to pursue his business as long as God gives him bread to eat.
Such a spirit the writer has never met, daunted with nothing, and only
relying upon Providence. ... Sir Thomas in Michaelmas term sent the
Bishop a great packet from Samuel Hartlib, correspondent of Durie, an
excellent man, and of the same spirit. If the Bishop like his way,
Hartlib will constantly write to him, and send all the passages both of
learning and public affairs, no man having better information, especially
_in re literariÔ_." [Footnote: The quotations in this paragraph are
from the late Mr. Brace's accurate abstracts of Durie's and Roe's letters
(sixteen in all) given in the six volumes of Calendars of the Domestic
State Papers from 1633 to 1638.]

These letters enable us to see Hartlib as he was in 1637, a Prussian
naturalized in London, between thirty and forty years of age, nominally a
merchant of some kind, but in reality a man of various hobbies, and
conducting a general news-agency, partly as a means of income and partly
from sheer zeal in certain public causes interesting to himself. His zeal
in this way, and in private benevolences to needy scholars and inventors,
had even outrun prudence; so that, though he could reckon his means at
between 300_l_. and 400_l_. a year, [Footnote: This appears from the
letter of his to Worthington, of date Aug. 3, 1660, quoted in Dircks's
Memoir (p. 4), where he says, "Let it not seem a paradox to you, if I
tell you, as long as I have lived in England, by wonderful providences, I
have spent yearly out of my own betwixt 300_l._ and 400_l._ sterling a
year."] that had not sufficed for his openhandedness. Durie's great
project for a reconciliation of the Calvinists and Lutherans, and a union
of all the Protestant Churches of Europe on some broad basis of mutual
tolerance or concession, had hitherto been his hobby in chief. He had
other hobbies, however, of a more literary nature, and of late he had
been undertaking too freely some work appertaining to "the schooling and
education of children."

This last fact, which we learn hazily from Durie's letters and Roe's, we
should have known, abundantly and distinctly, otherwise. There are two
publications of Hartlib's, of the years 1637 and 1638 respectively, the
first of a long and varied series that were to come from his pen. Now,
both of these are on the subject of Education. "_Conatuum Comenianorum
PrŠludia, ex BibliothecÔ S. H.: OxoniŠ, Excudebat Gulielmus Turnerus,
Academia Typographus_, 1637" ("Preludes of the Endeavours of Comenius,
from the Library of S. H.: Oxford, Printed by William Turner, University
Printer, 1637")--such is the general title of the first of these
publications. It is a small quarto, and consists first of a Preface
"_Ad Lectorem_" (to the Reader), signed "Samuel Hartlibius," and
then of a foreign treatise which it is the object of the publication to
introduce to the attention of Oxford and of the English nation; which
treatise has this separate title:--"_Porta SapientiŠ Reserata; sive
PansophiŠ ChristianŠ Seminarium: hoc est, Nova, Compendiosa et Solida
omnes Scientias et Artes, et quicquid manifesti vel occulti est quod
ingenio humano penetrare, solertiŠ imitari, linguae eloqui, datur,
brevius, verius, melius, quam hactenus, Addiscendi Methodus: Auctore
Reverendo Clarissimoque viro Domino Johanne Amoso Comenio_" ("The Gate
of Wisdom Opened; or the Seminary of all Christian Knowledge: being a
New, Compendious, and Solid Method of Learning, more briefly, more truly,
and better than hitherto, all Sciences and Arts, and whatever there is,
manifest or occult, that it is given to the genius of man to penetrate,
his craft to imitate, or his tongue to speak: The author that Reverend
and most distinguished man, Mr. John Amos Comenius"). So far as I have
been able to trace, this is the first publication bearing the name of
Hartlib. Copies of it must be scarce, but there is at least one in the
British Museum. There also is a copy of what, on the faith of an entry in
the Registers of the Stationers' Company, I have to record as his second
publication. "Oct. 17, 1638: Samuel Gillebrand entered for his copy,
under the hands of Mr. Baker and Mr. Rothwell, warden, a Book called
_Comenii PansophiŠ Prodromus et Didactica Dissertatio_ (Comenius's
Harbinger of Universal Knowledge and Treatise on Education), published by
Sam. Hartlib." [Footnote: My notes from Stationers' Registers.] When the
thing actually appeared, in small duodecimo, it had the date "1639" on
the title-page.

The canvas becomes rather crowded; but I am bound to introduce here to
the reader "that reverend and most distinguished man, Mr. John Amos
Comenius," who had been winning on Hartlib's heart by his theories of
Education and Pansophia, prepossessed though that heart was by Durie and
his scheme of Pan-Protestantism.

He was an Austro-Slav, born in 1592, at Comnia in Moravia, whence his
name Jan Amos Komensky, Latinized into Joannes Amosius Comenius. His
parents were Protestants of the sect known as the Bohemian or Moravian
Brethren, who traced their origin to the followers of Huss. Left an
orphan in early life, he was poorly looked after, and was in his
sixteenth year before he began to learn Latin. Afterwards he studied in
various places, and particularly at Herborn in the Duchy of Nassau;
whence he returned to his native Moravia in 1614, to become Rector of a
school at Prerau. Here it was that he first began to study and practise
new methods of teaching, and especially of grammatical teaching, induced,
as he himself tells us, by the fame of certain speculations on that
subject which had recently been put forth by Wolfgang Ratich, an
Educational Reformer then very active in Germany. From Prerau Comenius
removed in 1618 to Fulneck, to be pastor to a congregation of Moravian
Brethren there; but, as he conjoined the charge of a new school with his
pastorate, he continued his interest in new methods of education.
Manuscripts of schoolbooks which he was preparing on his new methods
perished, with his library, in a sack of Fulneck in 1621 by the
Spaniards; and in 1624, on an edict proscribing all the Protestant
ministers of the Austrian States, Comenius lost his living, and took
refuge in the Bohemian mountains with a certain Baron Sadowski of
Slaupna. In this retreat he wrote, in 1627, a short educational Directory
for the use of the tutor of the baron's sons. But, the persecution waxing
furious, and 30,000 families being driven out of Bohemia for their
Protestantism, Comenius had to migrate to Poland It was with a heavy
heart that lie did so: and, as he and his fellow-exiles crossed the
mountain-boundary on their way, they looked back on Moravia and Bohemia,
and, falling on their knees, prayed God not to let His truth fail utterly
out of those hinds, but to preserve a remnant in them for himself. Leszno
in Poland was Comenius's new refuge. Here again he employed himself in
teaching; and here, in a more systematic manner than before, he pursued
his speculations on the science of teaching and on improved methods for
the acquisition of universal knowledge. He read, he tells us, all the
works he could find on the subject of Didactics by predecessors or
contemporaries, such as Ratich, Ritter, Glaumius, Wolfstirn, CŠcilius,
and Joannes Valentinus AndreŠ, and also the philosophical works of
Campanella and Lord Bacon; but he combined the information so obtained
with his own ideas and experience. The results he seems mainly to have
jotted down, for future use, in various manuscript papers in his Slavic
vernacular, or in German, or in Latin; but in 1631 he was induced by the
curators of the school at Leszno to send to the press in Latin one book
of a practical and particular nature. This was a so-called "_Janua
Linguarum Reserata_," or "Gate of Languages Opened," propounding a
method which he had devised, and had employed at Leszno, for rapidly
teaching Latin, or any other tongue, and at the same time communicating
the rudiments of useful knowledge. The little book, though he thought it
a trifle, made him famous. "It happened, as I could not have imagined
possible," he himself writes, "that that puerile little work was received
with a sort of universal applause by the learned world. This was
testified by very many persons of different countries, both by letters to
myself congratulating me earnestly on the new invention, and also by
translations into the various popular tongues, undertaken as if in
rivalry with each other. Not only did editions which we have ourselves
seen appear in all the European tongues, twelve in number--viz. Latin,
Greek, Bohemian, Polish, German. Swedish, Dutch, English, French,
Spanish, Italian, and Hungarian; but it was translated, as we have
learnt, into such Asiatic tongues as the Arabic, the Turkish, the
Persian, and even the Mongolian."

The process which Comenius thus describes must have extended over several
years. There are traces of knowledge of him, and of his _Janua
Linguarum Reserata_, in England as early as 1633. In that year a
Thomas Home, M.A., then a schoolmaster in London, but afterwards Master
of Eton, put forth a "_Janua Linguarum_" which is said by Anthony
Wood to have been taken, "all or most," from Comenius. An actual English
translation or expansion of Comenius's book, by a John Anchoran,
licentiate in Divinity, under the title of "The Gate of Tongues Unlocked
and Opened: or else A Summary or Seed-Plot of all Tongues and Sciences,"
reached its "fourth edition much enlarged" in 1639, and may be presumed
to have been in circulation, in other forms, some years before. But the
great herald of Comenius and his ideas among the English was Samuel
Hartlib. Not only may he have had to do with the importation of
Comenius's _Janua Linguarum_ and the recommendation of that book to
such pedagogues as Home and Anchoran; but he was instrumental in
extracting from Comenius, while that book and certain appendices to it
were in the flush of their first European popularity, a summary of his
reserved and more general theories and intentions in the field of
Didactics. The story is told very minutely by Comenius himself.

The _Janua Linguarum Reserata_ was only a proposed improvement in
the art of teaching Language or Words; and ought not a true system of
education to range beyond that, and provide for a knowledge of Things?
This was what Comenius was thinking: he was meditating a sequel to his
popular little book, to be called "_Janua Rerum Reserata" or "Gate of
Things Opened," and to contain an epitome or encyclopŠdia of all
essential knowledge, under the three heads of Nature, Scripture, and the
Mind of Man. Nay, borrowing a word which had appeared as the title of a
somewhat meagre EncyclopŠdia of the Arts by a Peter Laurenbergius,
Comenius had resolved on _Pansophia_, or _Pansophia Christiana_
("Universal Wisdom," or "Universal Christian Wisdom"), as a fit
alternative name for this intended _Janua Rerum_. But he was keeping the
work back, as one requiring leisure, and could only be persuaded to let
the announcement of its title appear in the Leipsic catalogue of
forthcoming books. By that time, however, Hartlib of London had become so
dear a friend to Comenius that he could refuse _him_ nothing. Whether
there had been any prior personal acquaintance between Hartlib and
Comenius, by reason of their German and Slavic connexions, I cannot say.
But, since the publication of the _Janua Linguarum_, Hartlib had been in
correspondence with Comenius in his Polish home; and, by 1636, his
interest in the designs of Comenius, and willingness to forward them, had
become so well known in the circle of the admirers of Comenius that he
had been named as one of the five chief Comenians in Europe, the other
four being Zacharias Schneider of Leipsic, Sigismund Evenius of Weimar,
John Mochinger of Dantzic, and John Docemius of Hamburg. Now, Hartlib,
having heard of the intended _Janua Rerum_ or _Pansophia_ of Comenius,
not only in the Leipsic catalogue of forthcoming works, but also, more
particularly, from some Moravian students passing through London, had
written to Comenius, requesting some sketch of it. "Being thus asked,"
says Comenius, "by the most intimate of my friends, a man piously eager
for the public good, to communicate some idea of my future work, I did
communicate to him in writing, in a chance way, what I had a thought of
prefixing some time or other to the work in the form of a Preface; and
this, beyond my hope, and without my knowledge, was printed at Oxford,
under the title of _Conatuum Comenianorum PrŠludia_." Here we have the
whole secret of that publication from the Oxford University press, in
1637, which was edited by Hartlib and announced as being from his
Library. It was not a reprint of anything that had already appeared
abroad, but was in fact a new treatise by the great Comenius which
Hartlib had persuaded the author to send him from Poland and had
published on his own responsibility. He had apologized to Comenius for so
doing, on the ground that the publication would "serve a good purpose by
feeling the way and ascertaining the opinions of learned and wise men in
a matter of such unusual consequence." Comenius was a little nettled, he
says, especially as criticisms of the Pansophic sketch began to come in,
which would have been obviated, he thought, if he had been allowed
quietly to develop the thing farther before publication. Nevertheless,
there the book was, and the world now knew of Comenius not only as the
author of the little _Janua Linguarum_, but also as contemplating a vast
_Janua Rerum_, or organization of universal knowledge on a new basis.--In
fact, the fame of Comenius was increased by Hartlib's little
indiscretion. In Sweden especially there was an anxiety to have the
benefit of the counsels of so eminent a theorist in the business of
education. In 1638 the Swedish Government, at the head of which, during
the minority of Queen Christina, was the Chancellor Oxenstiern, invited
Comenius to Sweden, that he might preside over a Commission for the
revision and reform of the schools there. Comenius, however, declined the
invitation, recommending that the work should be entrusted to some native
Swede, but promising to give his advice; and, at the same time (1638), he
began to translate into Latin, for the behoof of Sweden and of other
countries, a certain _Didactica Magna_, or treatise on Didactics at
large, which he had written in his Bohemian Slavic vernacular nine years
before. Hartlib had an early abstract of this book, and this abstract is
part of the _Comenii PansophiŠ Prodromus et Didactica Dissertatio_ which
he edited in London in the same year, and published in duodecimo in 1639.
[Footnote: Bayle's Dictionary: Art. _ComÚnius (Jean-Amos)_; "Geshichte
der Pńdagogik," by Karl von Raumer (Stuttgart, 1843), Zweither Theil, pp.
46-49; "Essays on Educational Reformers," by Robert Hebert Quick (1868),
pp. 43-47; Wood's Ath. III. 366, and II. 677. The general sketch of
Comenius in Bayle, and those by Raumer and Mr. Quick, are very good; but
details in the text, and especially the particulars of Hartlib's early
connexion with Comenius, have had to be culled by me from the curious
autobiographical passages prefixed to or inserted in Comenius's various
writings as far as 1642. These form Part I. of his large Folio, _Opera
Didactica Omnia_, published by him at Amsterdam in 1657; and the passages
in that Part which have supplied particulars for the text will be found
at columns 3-4, 318, 326,403,442--444,454-459. Comenius, like most such
theoretic reformers, had a vein of egotism, and a strong memory for
details respecting the history of his own ideas and their reception.]

What, after all, were the new notions propounded from Poland, with such
universal European effort, by this Protestant Austro-Slav, Comenius, and
sponsored in England by the Prussian Hartlib? We shall try to give them
in epitome. Be it understood, however, that the epitome takes account
only of those works of Comenius which were written before 1639, without
including the mass of his later writings, some of which were to be even
more celebrated.

The _Didactica Magna_ is perhaps the most pregnant of the early
books of Comenius. The full title of this treatise is, in translation, as
follows: "Didactics at Large: propounding a universal Scheme for teaching
all Things to all persons; or a Certain and Perfect Mode of erecting such
Schools through all the communities, towns, and villages of any Christian
Kingdom, as that all the youth of both sexes, without the neglect of a
single one, may be compendiously, pleasantly, and solidly educated in
Learning, grounded in Morals, imbued with Piety, and so, before the years
of puberty, instructed in all things belonging to the present and the
future life." In the treatise itself there are first some chapters of
preliminary generalities. Man, says Comenius, is the last and most
perfect of creatures; his destiny is to a life beyond this; and the
present life is but a preparation for that eternal one. This preparation
involves three things--Knowledge by Man of himself and of all things
about him (Learning), Rule of himself (Morals), and Direction of himself
to God (Religion). The seeds of these three varieties of preparation are
in us by Nature; nevertheless, if Man would come out complete Man, he
must be formed or educated. Always the education must be threefold--in
Knowledge, in Morals, and in Religion; and this combination must never be
lost sight of. Such education, however, comes most fitly in early life.
Parents may do much, but they cannot do all; there is need, therefore, in
every country, of public schools for youth. Such schools should be for
the children of all alike, the poor as well as the rich, the stupid and
malicious as well as the clever and docile, and equally for girls as for
boys; and the training in them ought to be absolutely universal or
encyclopŠdic, in Letters, Arts, and Science, in Morals, and in Piety.
[Footnote: For Miltonic reasons, as well as for others, I cannot resist
the temptation to translate here, in a Note, the sub stance of Comenius's
views on the Education of Women; as given in Chap. IX. (cols. 42-44) of
his _Didactica Magna_:--"Nor, to say something particularly on this
subject, can any sufficient reason be given why the weaker sex"
[_sequior sexus_, literally "the later or following sex," is his
phrase, borrowed from Apuleius, and, though the phrase is usually
translated "the inferior sex," it seems to have been chosen by Comenius
to avoid that implication], "should be wholly shut out from liberal
studies, whether in the native tongue or in Latin. For equally are they
God's image; equally are they partakers of grace and of the kingdom to
come; equally are they furnished with minds agile and capable of wisdom,
yea often beyond our sex; equally to them is there a possibility of
attaining high distinction, inasmuch as they have often been employed by
God himself for the government of peoples, the bestowing of the most
wholesome counsels on kings and princes, the science of medicine and
other things useful to the human race, nay even the prophetical office,
and the rattling reprimand of Priests and Bishops" [_etiam ad
Propheticum munus, et incrependos Sacerdotes Episcoposque_, are the
words; and, as the treatise was prepared for the press in 1638, one
detects a reference, by the Moravian Brother in Poland, to the recent
fame of Jenny Geddes of Scotland]. "Why then should we admit them to the
Alphabet, but afterwards debar them from Books? Do we fear their
rashness? The more we occupy their thoughts, the less room will there be
in them for rashness, which springs generally from vacuity of mind." Some
slight limitations as to the reading proper for young women are appended,
but with a hint that the same limitations would be good for youth of the
other sex; and there is a bold quotation of the Scriptural text (1 Tim.
ii. 12),"_I suffer not a woman to teach_," and of two well-known
passages of Euripides and Juvenal against learned women or bluestockings,
to show that he was quite aware of these passages, but saw nothing in
them against his real meaning.] Here, at length, in the eleventh chapter,
we arrive at the great question, Has such a system of schools been
anywhere established? _No_, answers Comenius, and abundantly proves
his negative. Schools of a kind there had been in the world from the days
of the Pharaohs and Nebuchadnezzar, if not from those of Shem, but not
yet were there schools everywhere; not yet, where schools did exist, were
they for all classes; and, at best, where they did exist, of what sort
were they? Places, for the most part, of nausea and torment for the poor
creatures collected in them; narrow and imperfect in their aims, which
were verbal rather than real; and not even succeeding in these aims!
Latin, nothing but Latin! And how had they taught this precious and
eternal Latin of theirs? "Good God! how intricate, laborious, and prolix
this study of Latin has been! Do not scullions, shoeblacks, cobblers,
among pots and pans, or in camp, or in any other sordid employment, learn
a language different from their own, or even two or three such, more
readily than school students, with every leisure and appliance and all
imaginable effort, learn their solitary Latin? And what a difference in
the proficiency attained! The former, after a few months, are found
gabbling away with ease; the latter, after fifteen or twenty years, can
hardly, for the most part, unless when strapped up tight in their
grammars and dictionaries, bring out a bit of Latin, and that not without
hesitation and stammering." But all this might be remedied. There might
be such a Reformation of Schools that not only Latin, but all other
languages, and all the real Sciences and Arts of life to boot, might be
taught in them expeditiously, pleasantly, and thoroughly. What was wanted
was right methods and the consistent practical application of these.
Nature must supply the principles of the Method of Education: as all
Nature's processes go softly and spontaneously, so will all artificial
processes that are in conformity with Nature's principles. And what are
Nature's principles, as transferable into the Art of Education? Comenius
enumerates a good many, laying stress on such as these: nothing out of
season; matter before form; the general before the special, or the simple
before the complex; all continuously, and nothing _per saltum_. He
philosophizes a good deal, sometimes a little quaintly and mystically, on
these principles of Nature, and on the hints she gives for facility,
solidity, and celerity of learning, and then sums up his deductions as to
the proper Method in each of the three departments of education, the
Intellectual, the Moral, and the Religious. Things before words, or
always along with words, to explain them; the concrete and sensible to
prepare for the abstract; example and illustration rather than verbal
definition, or to accompany verbal definition: such is his main maxim in
the first department. Object-lessons, wherever possible: i.e. if boys are
taught about the stars, let it be with the stars over their heads to look
at; if about the structure of the human body, let it be with a skeleton
before them; if about the action of a pump, or other machine, let it be
with the machine actually at hand. "Always let the things which the words
are to designate be shown; and again, whatever the pupils see, hear,
touch, taste, let them be taught to express the same; so that tongue and
intellect may go on together." Where the actual objects cannot be
exhibited, there may be models, pictures, and the like; and every school
ought to have a large apparatus of such, and a museum. Writing and
drawing ought to be taught simultaneously with reading. All should be
made pleasant to the pupils; they ought to relish their lessons, to be
kept brisk, excited, wide-awake; and to this end there should be
emulation, praise of the deserving, always something nice and rousing on
the board, a mixture of the funny with the serious, and occasional
puzzles, anecdotes, and conundrums. The school-houses ought to be airy
and agreeable, and the school-hours not too long. In order that there may
be time to teach all that really ought to be taught, there must be a wise
neglect of heaps of things not essential: a great deal must be flung
overboard, as far as School is concerned, and left to the chance
inquisitiveness of individuals afterwards. And what sort of things may be
thus wisely neglected? Why, in the first place, the _non necessaria_
(things generally unprofitable), or things that contribute neither to
piety nor to good morals, and without which there may be very sufficient
erudition--as, for example, "the names of the Gentile gods, their love-
histories, and their religious rites," all which may be got up in books
at any time by any one that wants them; and, again, the _aliena_
(things that do not fit the particular pupil)--mathematics, for example,
for some, and music for those who have no ear; and, again, the
_particularissima_, or those excessive minutenesses and distinctions
into which one may go without end in any subject whatsoever. So, at
large, with very competent learning, no small philosophical acumen, much
logical formality and numeration of propositions and paragraphs, but a
frequent liveliness of style, and every now and then a crashing shot of
practical good sense, Comenius reasons and argues for a new System of
Education, inspired by what would now be called Realism or enlightened
Utilitarianism. Objections, as they might occur, are duly met and
answered; and one notes throughout the practical schoolmaster, knowing
what he is talking about, and having before his fancy all the while the
spectacle of a hundred or two of lads ranged on benches, and to be
managed gloriously from the desk, as a skilled metallurgist manages a
mass of molten iron. He is a decided advocate for large classes, each of
"some hundreds," under one head-master, because of the fervour which such
classes generate in themselves and in the master; and he shows how they
may be managed. Emulation, kindliness, and occasional rebuke, are chiefly
to be trusted to for maintaining discipline; and punishments are to be
for moral offences only. How Comenius would blend moral teaching and
religious teaching with the acquisition of knowledge in schools is
explained in two chapters, entitled "Method of Morals" and "Method of
instilling Piety;" and this last leads him to a separate chapter, in
which he maintains that, "if we would have schools thoroughly reformed
according to the true rules of Christianity, the books of Heathen authors
must be removed from them, or at least employed more cautiously than
hitherto." He argues this at length, insisting on the necessity of the
preparation of a graduated series of school-books that should supersede
the ordinary classics, conserving perhaps the best bits of some of them.
If any of the classics were to be kept bodily for school-use, they should
be Seneca, Epictetus, Plato, and the like. And so at last he comes to
describe the System of Schools he would have set up in every country,
viz.: I. THE INFANT SCHOOL, or MOTHER'S OWN SCHOOL, for children under
six; II. THE LUDUS LITERARIUS, Or VERNACULAR PUBLIC SCHOOL, for boys and
girls up to the age of twelve; III. THE LATIN SCHOOL or GYMNASIUM, for
higher teaching up to eighteen or so; and IV. THE UNIVERSITY (with
TRAVEL), for the highest possible teaching on to the age of about five-
and-twenty. From the little babble of the Infant School about Water, Air,
Fire, Iron, Bird, Fish, Hill, Sun, Moon, &c., all on the plan of
exercising the senses and making Things and Words go together, up to the
most exquisite training of the University, he shows how there might be a
progress and yet a continuity of encyclopŠdic aim. Most boys and girls in
every community, he thinks, might stop at the Vernacular School, without
going on to the Latin; and he has great faith in the capabilities of any
vernacular and the culture that may be obtained within it. Still he would
like to see as many as possible going on to the Latin School and the
University, that there might never be wanting in a community spirits
consummately educated, veritable [Greek: polumatheis] and [Greek:
pansophoi]. In the Universities apparently he would allow the largest
ranging among the classics of all sorts, though still on some principle
for organizing that kind of reading. There is, in fact, a mass of details
and suggestions about each of the four kinds of schools, all vital to
Comenius, and all pervaded by his sanguine spirit, but which one can
hardly now read through. [Footnote: A separate little treatise on the
management of "The Infant School," containing advices to parents for home
use, was written by Comenius in Bohemian Slavic, and translated thence
into German in 1633. It appears in Latin among his _Opera Didactica_
collected. He wrote also, he tells us, six little books for "The
Vernacular School," under fancy-titles. These do not seem ever to have
been published. His _Janua Linguarum_ (1631), and one or two
appendages to it, were contributions to the theory and practice of "The
Latin School."] The final chapter is one of the most eloquent and
interesting. It is entitled, "Of the Requisites necessary for beginning
the practice of this Universal Method." Here he comes back upon his
notion of a graduated series of school-books, or rather of an
organization of books generally for the purposes of education. "One great
requisite," he says, "the absence of which would make the whole machine
useless, while its presence would put all in motion, is A SUFFICIENT
APPARATUS OF PAMMETHODIC BOOKS." All, he repeats, hinges on the
possibility of creating such an apparatus. "This is a work," he adds,
"not for one man, especially if he is otherwise occupied, and not
instructed in everything that ought to be reduced into the Universal
Method; nor is it perhaps a work for one age, if we would have all
brought to absolute perfection. There is need, therefore, of a COLLEGIAL
SOCIETY (_ergo Societate Collegiali est opus_). For the convocation
of such a Society there is need of the authority and liberality of some
King, or Prince, or Republic, and also of some quiet place, away from
crowds, with a Library and other appurtenances." There follows an earnest
appeal to persons of all classes to forward such an association, and the
good Moravian winds up with a prayer to God. [Footnote: There is a
summary of Comenius's _Didactica Magna_ in Von Reumer's "Geshichte
der PŠdgogis" (pp. 53-59). It is accurate so far as it goes; but I have
gone to the book itself.]

A special part of Comenius's system, better known perhaps at the time of
which we write than his system as a whole, was his Method for Teaching
Languages. This is explained in Chapter XXII. of his _Didactica
Magna_, and more in detail in his _Linguarum Janua Rescrata_, and
one or two writings added to that book:--Comenius, as we already know,
did not overrate linguistic training in education. "Languages are
acquired," he says, "not as a part of learning or wisdom, but as
instrumental to the reception and communication of learning. Accordingly,
it is not _all_ languages that are to be learnt, for that is
impossible, nor yet _many_, for that would be useless, as drawing
away the time due to the study of Things; but only those that are
_necessary_. The necessary tongues, however, are: first, the
Vernacular, for home use; next, Neighbouring Tongues, for conversation
with neighbours,--as, for example, the German for Poles of one frontier,
and the Hungarian, the Wallachian, and the Turkish, for Poles of other
parts; next, Latin, as the common language of the learned, admitting one
to the wise use of books; and, finally, the Greek and Arabic for
philosophers and medical men, and Greek and Hebrew for theologians." Not
all the tongues that are learnt, either, are to be learnt to the same
nicety of perfection, but only to the extent really needed. Each language
should be learnt separately--first, the Vernacular, which ought to be
perfectly learnt, and to which children ought to be kept for eight or ten
years; then whatever neighbouring tongue might be desirable, for which a
year would be long enough; next, Latin, which ought to be learnt well,
and might be learnt in two years; and so to Greek, to which he would give
one year, and Hebrew, which he would settle in six months. If people
should be amazed at the shortness of the time in which he ventured to
assert a language like the Latin might be learnt and learnt well, let
them consider the principles of his method. Always Things along with
Words, and Words associated with new groups of Things, from the most
familiar objects to those rarer and farther off, so that the
_vocabulary_ might get bigger and bigger; and, all the while, the
constant use of the vocabulary, such as it was, in actual talk, as well
as in reading and writing. First, let the pupil stutter on anyhow, only
using his stock of words; correctness would come afterwards, and in the
end elegance and force. Always practice rather than rule, and leading to
rule; also connexion of the tongue being learnt with that learnt last. A
kind of common grammar may be supposed lying in the pupil's head, which
he transfers instinctively to each new tongue, so that he has to be
troubled only with variations and peculiarities. The reading-books
necessary for thoroughly teaching a language by this method might be
(besides Lexicons graduated to match) four in number--I. _Vestibulum_
(The Porch), containing a vocabulary of some hundreds of simple words,
fit for babbling with, grouped in little sentences, with annexed tables
of declensions and conjugations; II. _Janua_ (The Gate), containing all
the common words in the language, say about 8,000, also compacted into
interesting sentences, with farther grammatical aids; III. _Palatium_
(The Palace), containing tit-bits of higher discourse about things, and
elegant extracts from authors, with notes and grammatical comments; IV.
_Thesaurus_ (The Treasury), consisting of select authors themselves, duly
illustrated, with a catalogue of other authors, so that the pupils might
have some idea of the extent of the Literature of the language, and might
know what authors to read on occasion afterwards.--Comenius himself
actually wrote a _Vestibulum_ for Latin, consisting of 427 short
sentences, and directions for their use; and, as we know, his _Janua
Linguarum Reserata_, which appeared in 1631, was the publication which
made him famous. It is an application of his system to Latin. On the
principle that Latin can never be acquired with ease while its vocabulary
is allowed to lie alphabetically in dead Dictionaries, or in
multitudinous variety of combination in Latin authors, about 8,000 Latin
words of constant use are collected into a kind of Noah's Ark,
representative of all Latinity. This is done in 1,000 short Latin
sentences, arranged in 100 paragraphs of useful information about all
things and sundry, under such headings as _De Ortu Mundi_ (Of the
Beginning of the World), _De Elementis_ (Of the Elements), _De
Firmamento_ (Of the Firmament), _De Igne_ (Of Fire), and so on through
other physical and moral topics. Among these are _De Metallis_ (Of
Metals), _De Herbis_ (Of Plants), _De Insectis_ (Of Insects), _De
Ulceribus et Vulneribus_ (Of Sores and Wounds), _De Agricultura_ (Of
Agriculture), _De Vestituum Generibus (Of Articles of Dress), _De
Puerperio_ (Of Childbirth), _De Pace et Bella_ (Of Peace and War), _De
Modestia_ (Of Modesty), _De Morte et Sepultura_ (Of Death and Burial),
_De Providentia Dei_ (Of the Providence of God), _De Angelis_ (Of
Angels). Comenius was sure that due drill in this book would put a boy in
effective possession of Latin for all purposes of reading, speaking, and
writing. And, of course, by translation, the same manual would serve for
any other language. For, the Noah's Ark of _things_ being much the same
for all peoples, in learning a new language you have but to fit on to the
contents of that permanent Ark of realities a new set of vocables.
[Footnote: _Dialectica Magna_ Chap. XXII. first edition of _Janua_, as
reprinted in _Comenii Opera Didactica_, 1657 (Part I, cols. 255-302).]

Comenius rather smiled at the rush of all Europe upon his _Janua
Linguarum_, or Method for Teaching Languages. That was a trifle in his
estimation, compared with the bigger speculations of his _Didactica
Magna_, and still more with his _PansophiŠ Prodromus_ or _Porta
SapientiŠ Reserata_. A word or two on this last little book:--Comenius
appears in it as a would-be Lord Bacon, an Austro-Slavic Lord Bacon, a
very Austro-Slavic Lord Bacon. He mentions Bacon several times, and
always with profound respect ("_illustrissimus Verulamius_" and so
on); but it appeared to him that more was wanted than Bacon's _Novum
Organum,_ or _Instauratio Magna_, with all its merits. A PANSOPHIA was
wanted, nay, a PANSOPHIA CHRISTIANA, or consolidation of all human
knowledge into true central Wisdom, one body of Real Truth. O Wisdom,
Wisdom! O the knowledge of things in themselves, and in their universal
harmony! What was mere knowledge of words, or all the fuss of pedagogy
and literature, in view of that! Once attained, and made communicable, it
would make the future of the world one Golden Age! Why had it not been
attained? What had been the hindrances to its attainment? What were the
remedies? In a kind of phrenzy, which does not prevent most logical
precision of paragraphing and of numbering of propositions, Comenius
discusses all this, becoming more and more like a Bacon bemuddled, as he
eyes his PANSOPHIA through the mist. What it is he cannot make plain to
us; but we see he has some notion of it himself, and we honour him
accordingly. For there are gleams, and even flashes, through the mist.
For example, there is a paragraph entitled _Scientiarum Laceratio_,
lamenting the state of division, disconnectedness, and piece-meal
distribution among many hands, into which the Sciences had fallen. Though
there were books entitled Pansophias, EncyclopŠdias, and the like, he had
seen none sufficiently justifying the name, or exhausting the
universality of things. Much less had he seen the whole apparatus of
human intelligence so constructed from its own certain and eternal
principles that all things should appear mutually concatenated among
themselves from first to last without any hiatus! "Metaphysicians hum to
themselves only, Natural Philosophers chaunt their own praises,
Astronomers lead on their dances for themselves, Ethical Thinkers set up
laws for themselves, Politicians lay foundations for themselves,
Mathematicians triumph for themselves, and for themselves Theologians
reign." What is the consequence? Why, that, while each one attends only
to himself and his own phantasy, there is no general accord, but only
dissonance. "We see that the branches of a tree cannot live unless they
all alike suck their juices from a common trunk with common roots. And
can we hope that the branches of Wisdom can be torn asunder with safety
to their life, that is to truth? Can one be a Natural Philosopher who is
not also a Metaphysician? or an Ethical Thinker who does not know
something of Physical Science? or a Logician who has no knowledge of real
matters? or a Theologian, a Jurisconsult, or a Physician, who is not
first a Philosopher? or an Orator or Poet who is not all things at once?
He deprives himself of light, of hand, and of regulation, who pushes away
from him any shred of the knowable." From such passages one has a glimmer
of what Comenius did mean by his Pansophia. He hoped to do something
himself towards furnishing the world with this grand desideratum. He had
in contemplation a book which should at least show what a proper
EncyclopŠdia or Consolidation of Universal Truth ought to be. But here
again he invites co-operation. Many hands in many lands would have to
labour at the building of the great Temple of Wisdom. He appeals to all,
"of every rank, age, sex, and tongue," to do what they can. Especially
let there be an end to the monopoly of Latin. "We desire and protest that
studies of wisdom be no longer committed to Latin alone, and kept shut up
in the schools, as has hitherto been done, to the greatest contempt and
injury of the people at large and the popular tongues. Let all things be
delivered to each nation in its own speech, so that occasion may be
afforded to all who are men to occupy themselves with these liberal
matters rather than fatigue themselves, as is constantly the case, with
the cares of this life, or ambitions, or drinking-bouts, or other
vanities, to the destruction of life and soul both. Languages themselves
too would so be polished to perfection with the advancement of the
Sciences and Arts. Wherefore we, for our part, have resolved, if God
pleases, to divulge these things of ours both in the Latin and in the
vernacular. For no one lights a candle and hides it under a bushel, but
places it on a candlestick, that it may give light to all." [Footnote:
_Pansophici Libri Delineatio_ (_i.e._ the same treatise which Hartlib had
printed at Oxford in 1637) in _Comenii Opera Didactica_, Part I. cols.
403-454.] Such were the varied Comenian views which the good Hartlib
strove to bring into notice in England in 1637-9. Durie and
Reconciliation of the Churches was still one of his enthusiasms, but
Comenius and Reformed Education was another. But, indeed, nothing of a
hopeful kind, with novelty in it, came amiss to Hartlib. He, as well as
Comenius, had read Lord Bacon. He was a devoted admirer of the Baconian
philosophy, and had imbibed, I think, more deeply than most of Bacon's
own countrymen, the very spirit and mood of that philosophy. That' the
world had got on so slowly hitherto because it had pursued wrong methods;
that, if once right methods were adopted, the world would spin forward at
a much faster rate in all things; that no one could tell what fine
discoveries of new knowledge, what splendid inventions in art, what
devices for saving labour, increasing wealth, preserving health, and
promoting happiness, awaited the human race in the future: all this,
which Bacon had taught, Hartlib had taken into his soul. His sympathy
with Durie and Religious Compromise and his sympathy with Comenius and
School Reform were but special exhibitions of his general passion for new
lights. The cry of his soul, morning and night, in all things, was

Phosphore, redde diem! Quid gaudia nostra moraris?
Phosphore, redde diem!

[Footnote: This is no fancy-quotation. Hartlib himself, in 1659, uses it
in a letter to the famous Boyle, as the passionate motto of his life (see
Diary of Worthington, edited by Crossley, I, 168, and Boyle's Works, ed.
1744, V. 293).]

Naturally this passion had a political side. Through the reign of
Thorough, it is true, Hartlib had been as quiet as it became a foreigner
in London to be at such a time, and had even been in humble
correspondence in Durie's behalf with Bishops, Privy Councillors, and
other chiefs of the existing power. But, when the Scottish troubles
brought signs of coming change for England, and there began to be stir
among the Puritans and the miscellaneous _quidnuncs_ of London in
anxiety for that change, Hartlib found himself in friendly contact and
acquaintanceship with some of these forward spirits. One is not
surprised, therefore, at the fact, previously mentioned in our History
(Vol. II. p. 45), that, when Charles was mustering his forces for the
First Bishops' War against the Scots, and Secretary Windebank was busy
with arrests of persons in London suspected of complicity with the Scots,
Hartlib was one of those pounced upon. Here is the exact official
warrant:--"These are to will, require, and authorize you to make your
repair to the house of Samuel Hartlib, merchant, and to examine him upon
such interrogatories as you shall find pertinent to the business you are
now employed in; and you are also to take with you one of the messengers
of his Majesty's Chamber, who is to receive and follow such order and
directions as you shall think fit to give him; and this shall be your
sufficient warrant in this behalf.--Dated at my house in Drury Lane, 1
May 1639.--Fran. Windebank. To Robert Reade, my Secretary." [Footnote:
Copied by me from the original in the S.P.O.]--The reader may, at this
point, like to know where Hartlib's house was. It was in Duke's Place,
Aldgate. He had been there for more than a year, if not from his first
settling in London; and it was to be his residence for many years to
come.[Footnote: Among the Ayscough MSS. in the British Museum there is
one (No. 4276) containing a short letter from Joseph Meade to Hartlib,
dated from Christ's College, Cambridge, June 18, 1638, and addressed "To
his worthie friend Mr. Samuel Hartlib at his house in Duke's Place,
London." There is nothing of importance in the letter; which is mainly
about books Meade would like Hartlib to send to certain persons named--
one of them Dr. Twisse, afterwards Prolocutor of the Westminster
Assembly. Meade died less than four months after the date of this
letter.] He was married, and had at least one child.--Reade and the
King's officer appear to have discovered nothing specially implicating
Hartlib; for he is found living on much as before through the remainder
of the Scottish Presbyterian Revolt, on very good terms with his former
Episcopal correspondents and others who regarded that Revolt with dread
and detestation. The following is a letter of his, of date Aug. 10, 1640,
which I found in his own hand in the State Paper Office. It has not, I
believe, been published before, and letters of Hartlib's of so early a
date are scarce: besides, it is too characteristic to be omitted:--

"Right Hon. [no farther indication of the person addressed: was it Sir
Thomas Roe?]

"These are to improve the leisure which perhaps you may enjoy in your
retiredness from this place. The author of the Schedule of Divers New
Inventions [apparently enclosed in the letter] is the same Plattes who
about a year ago published two profitable treatises concerning Husbandry
and Mines. He is now busy in contriving of some other Tracts, which will
more particularly inform all sorts of people how to procure their own and
the public good of these countries. [Footnote: Gabriel Plattes, author of
"A Discovery of Subterraneall Treasure: viz. of all manner of Mines and
Minerals from the Gold to the Coale: London 1639, 4to." This is from
Lowndes's _Bibliographer's Manual_ by Bohn; where it is added that
"Plattes published several other works chiefly relating to Husbandry, and
is said to have dropped down dead in the London streets for want of
food." Among other things, he was an Alchemist; and in Wood's AthenŠ by
Bliss (I. 640-1) there is a curious extract from his Mineralogical book,
giving an account of a process of his for making pure gold artificially,
though, as he says, not with profit. One thinks kindly of this poor
inventive spirit hanging on upon Hartlib with his "Schedule of New
Inventions," and of Hartlib's interest in him.] Some of my learned
friends in France do highly commend one Palissi to be a man of the like
disposition and industry. The books which he hath written and printed
(some of them in French) are said to contain a world of excellent matter.
[Footnote: This, I think, must be the famous Bernard Palissy, "the
Potter," who died in 1590, leaving writings such as Hartlib describes. If
so, Hartlib was a little behind time in his knowledge, for one might
fancy him speaking of a contemporary.] I wish such like observations,
experiments, and true philosophies, were more known to other nations. By
this means not only the Heavens, but also the Earth, would declare the
glory of God more evidently than it hath done.---As for Mr. Durie, by
these enclosed [a number of extracts from letters about Durie's business
which Hartlib had received from Bishops and others] your Honour will be
able to see how far I am advanced in transactions of his affairs. My Lord
Bishop of Exeter [Hall], in one of his late letters unto himself [Durie],
uses these following words: '_Perlegi quŠ_,' &c. [A long Latin
passage, which may be given in English: 'I have read through what you
have heretofore written to the most illustrious Sir Thomas Roe respecting
the procuring of an ecclesiastical agreement. I like your prudence and
most sagacious theological ingenuity in the same: should Princes follow
the thread of the advice, we shall easily extricate ourselves from this
labyrinth of controversies. The Reverend Bishop of Salisbury has a work
on the Fundamentals of Faith, which is now at press, designed for the
composing of these disputes of the Christian world; doubtless to the
great good of the Church. Proceed busily in the sacred work you have
undertaken: we will not cease to aid you all we can with our prayers and
counsels, and, if possible, with other helps']: I hear the worthies of
Cambridge are at work to satisfy in like manner the Doctors of Bremen:
only my Lord Bishop of Durham [Morton] is altogether silent. It may be
the northern distractions hinder him from such and the like pacifical
overtures. I am much grieved for his book _De [Greek: polutopia]
corporis Christi_ [on the Ubiquity of Christ's Body], which is now in
the press at Cambridge; for both the Bishop of Lincoln [Williams] and Dr.
Hacket told me, from the mouth of him that corrects it (an accurate and
judicious scholar), that it was a very invective and bitter railing
against the Lutheran tenets on that point, insomuch that Dr. Brownrigg
had written unto his lordship about it, to put all into a milder strain.
I confess others do blame somewhat Mr. D[urie] for certain phrases which
he seems to yield unto in his printed treatise with the Danes, '_De
OmniprŠsentiÔ et orali manducatione_' [Of the Omnipresence and Eating
with the Mouth]; yet let me say this much--that Reverend Bucer, that
prudent learned man, who was the first man of note that ever laboured in
this most excellent work of reconciling the Protestants, even in the very
first beginning of the breach, and who laboured more abundantly than they
all in it (I mean than all the rest of the Reformers in his time): Bucer,
I say, yielded so far for peace' sake to Luther and his followers in some
harsh-sounding terms and words that the Helvetians began to be suspicious
of him, lest he should be won to the contrary side, although the good man
did fully afterwards declare his mind when he saw his yielding would do
no good. It is not then Mr. D.'s case alone, when so brave a worthy as
Bucer goes along with him, a man of whom great Calvin uttered these words
when news was brought him of his death, '_Quam multiplicem in Bucero
jacturam fecerit Dei Ecclesia quoties in mentem venit, cor meum prope
laccrari sentio_' ['As often as it comes to my mind what a manifold
loss the Church of God has had in Bucer, I feel my heart almost
lacerated']. So he wrote in an epistle to Viret. But enough of this
subject.----I have had these 14 days no letters from Mr. D.; nor do I
long much for them, except I could get in the rents from his tenant to
pay the 70 rixdollars to Mr. Avery's brother in London. The Bishop of
Exeter seems to be a man of excellent bowels; and, if your Honour would
be pleased to second his requests towards my Lord's Grace of Canterbury,
or to favour Bishop Davenant's advice in your own way, perhaps some
comfortable effects would soon follow. My Lady Anna Waller doth highly
affect Mr. D. and his endeavours; and, if any donatives or other
preferments should be recommended to be disposed this way by my Lord
Keeper (who is a near kinsman of her Ladyship), I am confident she would
prove a successful mediatrix in his behalf. If your Honour thinks it fit,
I can write also to my Lord Primate [Usher] to intercede with my Lord's
Grace [Laud] for Mr. D. He is about to bring forth a great universal
work, or Ecclesiastical History. The other treatise, put upon him by his
Majesty's special command, '_De Authoritate Regum et Officio
Subditorum,_' ['On the Authority of Kings and the Duty of Subjects']
will shortly come to light.----Thus, craving pardon for this prolixity of
scribbling, I take humbly my leave; remaining always

"Your Honour's most obliged and most assured Servant,

SAM. HARTLIB. [Footnote: Copied by me from the original in the S.P.O.]

London: the 10 of Aug. 1640."

Three months after the date of this letter the Long Parliament had met,
and there was a changed world, with changed opportunities, for Hartlib,
as well as for other people. The following digest of particulars in his
life for the years 1641 and 1642 will show what he was about:--

"A Briefe Relation of that which hath been lately attempted to procure
Ecclesiasticall Peace amongst Protestants. Published by Samuel Hartlib.
London, Printed by J. R. for Andrew Crooke, and are to be sold at his
shop in Paul's Churchyard at the sign of the Green Dragon. 1641."--This
little tract is an exposition of Durie's idea, and a narrative sketch of
his exertions in its behalf from 1628 onwards.

"A Description of the famous Kingdom of MACARIA, shewing its excellent
Government, wherein the Inhabitants live in great prosperity, health, and
happiness; the King obeyed, the Nobles honoured, and all good men
respected; Vice punished, and Virtue rewarded: An example to other
nations. In a Dialogue between a Scholar and a Traveller. London 1641"
(4to. pp. 15).--There is a Dedication to Parliament, dated "25th October
1641," in which it is said that "Honourable Court will lay the
cornerstone of the world's happiness." The tract is an attempt at a
fiction, after the manner of "More's Utopia" and Bacon's "New Atlantis,"
shadowing forth the essentials of good government in the constitution of
the imaginary Kingdom of MACARIA (Happy-land, from the Greek makarios,
happy). The gist of the thing lies in the rather prosaic statement that
MACARIA has Five Councils or Departments of State: to wit, _Husbandry_,
_Fishery_, _Land-trade_, _Sea-trade_, and _New Plantations_.--Although
there is no author's name to the scrap, it is known to be Hartlib's; who,
indeed, continued to use the word MACARIA, half-seriously, half-
playfully, till the Restoration and beyond, as a pet name for his Ideal
Commonwealth of perfect institutions. [Footnote: See Worthington's Diary
edited by Crossley (L 163). Hartlib's original _Macaria_ is reprinted in
the Harleian Miscellany, Vol. I.]

In 1641 Hartlib was in correspondence with Alexander Henderson. The
reader already knows how "the Scottish business," or the King's
difficulty with the Scots, led to the calling of the Long Parliament, and
how for six or seven months (Nov. 1640-June 1641) that business
intertwined itself with the other proceedings of the Parliament, and
Henderson and the other Scottish Commissioners, lay and clerical, were in
London all that time, nominally looking after that business, but really
co-operating with Pym and the other Parliamentary leaders for the Reform
of both kingdoms, and much lionized by the Londoners accordingly (Vol.
II. pp. 189-192). Well, Hartlib, who found his way to everybody, found
his way to Henderson. lie probably saw a good deal of him, if not of the
other Scottish Commissioners; for, after Henderson had returned to
Scotland, at least three letters from Hartlib followed him thither. Here
is the beginning of the third: "Reverend and Loving Brother in Christ: I
hope my two former letters were safely delivered, wherein I gave you
notice of a purpose taken in hand here to make Notes upon the Bible. What
concurrence you think fit to give in such a work I leave to your own
piety to determine. Now I have some other thoughts to impart to you,
which lie as a burthen on my heart." The thoughts communicated to
Henderson are about the wretched state of the Palatinate, with its
Protestantism and its University of Heidelberg ruined by the Thirty
Years' War, and the "sweet-natured Prince Elector" in exile; but Hartlib
slips into Durie's idea, and urges theological correspondence of all
Protestant divines, in order to put an end to divisions. The letter,
which is signed "Your faithful friend and servant in Christ," is dated
"London, Octob. 1641." All this we know because Hartlib kept a copy of
the letter and printed it in 1643. "The copy of a Letter written to Mr.
Alexander Henderson: London, Printed in the yeare 1643," is the title of
the scrap, as I have seen it in the British Museum. Even so we should not
have known it to be Hartlib's, had not the invaluable Thomason written
"_By Mr. Hartlib_" on the title-page, appending "_Feb._ 6, 1642" (_i.e._
1642-3) as the date of the publication.

"A Reformation of Schooles, designed in two excellent Treatises: the
first whereof summarily sheweth the great necessity of a generall
Reformation of Common Learning, what grounds of hope there are for such a
Reformation, how it may be brought to passe. The second answers certaine
objections ordinarily made against such undertakings, arid describes the
severall parts and titles of workes which are shortly to follow. Written
many yeares agoe in Latine by that reverend, godly, learned, and famous
Divine, Mr. John Amos Comenius, one of the Seniours of the exiled Church
of Moravia; and now, upon the request of many, translated into English
and published by Samuel Hartlib for the general good of the Nation.
London: Printed for Michael Sparke, Senior, at the Blue Bible in Greene
Arbour: 1642" (small ito. pp. 94).--This is, in fact, a reproduction in
English of the views of Comenius in his Didactica Magna, &c. As I find it
registered in the books of the Stationers' Company "Jan. 12, 1641"
(_i.e._ 1641-2), it must have been out early in 1642.

These traces of Hartlib in the years 1641 and 1642 are significant, and
admit of some comment:--In the _Description_ _of the Kingdom of Macaria_,
I should say, Hartlib broke out for himself. He had all sorts of ideas as
to social and economic improvements, and he would communicate a little
specimen of these, respecting Husbandry, Fishery, and Commerce, to the
reforming Parliament. But he was still faithful to Durie and Comenius,
and three of his recovered utterances of 1641-2 are in behalf of them.
His _Brief Relation_ and his _Letter to Henderson_ refer to Durie and his
scheme of Protestant union. It is not impossible that Hartlib was moved
to these new utterances in the old subject by Durie's own presence in
London; for, as we have mentioned (Vol. II. p. 367), there is some
evidence that Durie, who had not been in London since 1633, came over on
a flying visit after the opening of the Long Parliament. It is a
coincidence, at least, that the publisher of Hartlib's _Brief Relation_
about Durie brought out, at the very same time, a book of Durie's own
tending in the same direction. [Footnote: "Mr. Dureus his Eleven
Treatises touching Ecclesiastical Peace amongst Protestants" is the title
of an entry by Mr. Crooke in the Stationers' Registers, of date Feb. 15,
1640.] Quite possibly, however, Durie may have still been abroad, and
Hartlib may have acted for him. In the other case there is no such doubt.
When, in Jan. 1641-2, Hartlib sent to the press his new compilation of
the views of Comenius under the title of _A Reformation of Schools_,
there was good reason for it. Comenius himself was at his elbow. The
great man had come to London.

Education, and especially University Education, was one of the subjects
that Parliament was anxious to take up. In the intellectual world of
England, quite apart from politics, there had for some time been a
tradition of dissatisfaction with the existing state of the Universities
and the great Public Schools. In especial, Bacon's complaints and
suggestions on this subject in the Second Book of his _De Augmentis_
had sunk into thoughtful minds. That the Universities, by persistence in
old and outworn methods, were not in full accord with the demands and
needs of the age; that their aims were too professional and particular,
and not sufficiently scientific and general; that the order of studies in
them was bad, and some of the studies barren; that there ought to be a
bold direction of their endowments and apparatus in the line of
experimental knowledge, so as to extract from Nature new secrets, and
sciences for which Humanity was panting; that, moreover, there ought to
be more of fraternity and correspondence among the Universities of
Europe, and some organization of their labours with a view to mutual
illumination and collective advance: [Footnote: "De Augmentis:" Bacon's
Works, I. 487 _et seq._, and Translation of same, III. 323 _et seq._
(Spedding's edition).] all these Verulamian speculations, first submitted
to King James, were lying hid here and there in English intellects, in
watch for an opportunity. Then, in a different way, the political crisis
had brought Oxford and Cambridge, but especially Oxford, under severe
revision. Had they not been the nurseries of Episcopacy, and of other
things and principles of which England was now declaring herself
impatient? All this, which was to be more felt after the Civil War had
begun and Oxford became the King's headquarters, was felt already in very
considerable degree during the two-and-twenty months of preliminary
struggle between the King and the Parliament (Nov. 1640-Aug. 1642). Why
not have a University in London? There was Gresham College in the city,
in existence since 1597, and doing not ill on its limited basis; there
was Chelsea College, founded by Dean Sutcliffe of Exeter in 1610, "to the
intent that learned men might there have maintenance to answer all the
adversaries of religion" but which, after a rickety infancy, and laughed
at by Laud as "Controversy College," had been lost in lawsuits: why not,
with inclusion or exclusion of these and other foundations, set up in
London a great University on the best modern principles, abolishing the
monopoly of Oxford and Cambridge?

Of these rumours, plans, or possibilities, due notice had been sent by
the zealous Hartlib to Comenius at Leszno. Ought not Comenius to be on
the spot? What had he been hoping for and praying for but a "Collegial
Society" somewhere in some European state to prepare the necessary
"Apparatus of Pammethodic Books" and so initiate his new system of
Universal Didactics, or again (to take the other and larger form of his
aspiration), a visible co-operation of kindred spirits throughout Europe
towards founding and building the great "Temple of Pansophia" or
"Universal Real Knowledge"? What if these Austro-Slavic dreams of his
should be realized on the banks of the Thames? People were very willing
thereabouts; circumstances were favourable; what was mainly wanted was
direction and the grasp of a master-spirit! Decidedly, Comenius ought to
come over.--All this we learn from Comenius himself, whose account of the
matter and of what followed had better now be quoted. "The _PansophiŠ
Prodromus_," he says, "having been published, and copies dispersed
through the various kingdoms of Europe, but many learned men who approved
of the sketch despairing of the full accomplishment of the work by one
man, and therefore advising the erection of a College of learned men for
this express business, in these circumstances the very person who had
been the means of giving the _Prodromus_ to the world, a man strenuous in
practically prosecuting things as far as he can, Mr. S. H. [_strenuus
rerum quÔ datur [Greek: ergodioktŠs], D. S. H._], devoted himself
laboriously to that scheme, so as to bring as many of the more forward
spirits into it as possible. And so it happened at length that, having
won over one and another, he, in the year 1641, prevailed on me also by
great entreaties to go to him. My people having consented to the journey,
I came to London on the very day of the autumnal equinox [Sept. 22,
1641], and there at last learnt that I had been invited by the order of
the Parliament. But, as the Parliament, the King having then gone to
Scotland [Aug. 10], was dismissed for a three months' recess [not quite
three months, but from Sept. 9 to Oct. 20], I was detained there through
the winter, my friends mustering what Pansophic apparatus they could,
though it was but slender. On which occasion there grew on my hands a
tractate with this title, _Via Lucis: Hoc Est, &c._. [The Way of Light]:
That is, A Reasonable Disquisition how the Intellectual Light of Souls,
namely Wisdom, may now at length, in this Evening of the World, be
happily diffused through all Minds and Peoples. This for the better
understanding of these words of the oracle in _Zachariah XIV._ 7, _It
shall come to pass that at evening time it shall be light._ The
Parliament meanwhile having reassembled, and our presence being known, I
had orders to wait until they should have sufficient leisure from other


 


Back to Full Books