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sion of the land. It is undeniable that the opposition between city and country, between trade and agriculture, is no longer what it formerly was, but is undergoing a profound change.
“ The second question is to establish the privileges of the national representation. I distinguish the direct and legal from the indirect and moral activity. There is very little difference as to the first. The representation takes its place in the legislature, where without the consent of both the free factors nothing has the force of law. The representatives grant whatever comes from the pockets of the subjects. It would be of great importance for Prussia to determine the precise limits between the ordinary necessities, which remain the same for a greater length of time, and the extraordinary expenses, which are brought up at every session. The first requisite is that the course of the political life of Prussia should never stagnate, but be above the dissensions of the moment.
" But it is difficult to define the indirect activity of the represen. tation, by which external politics are principally treated. The king cannot act, nor direct the great destiny of Prussia, against the public opinion of the nation ; but neither can mere party voice nor momentary excitement be taken for the expression of this public opinion. The chambers are only one of its elements, the other is the press; and all the organs through which the voice of the people is declared have an equal claim to be heard and respected. This most profound of all relations between the governing and the governed cannot be reduced to formulas. Nothing can compensate for the loss of the mutual good-will of both parties. The constitution can only multiply and secure the means for the public voice to express itself free and pure, but cannot use compulsion on one side or the other without destroying the Prussian monarchy." pp. 271 - 280.
We take great pleasure in laying these extracts before our readers, and doubt not that, while they admire the profound and solid views of so great a statesman, they will join with us in regret at his loss. Never was Germany, and Prussia in particular, more in need of all her great men than at the very time he was taken from her. Had he lived a year longer, he would undoubtedly have exerted a great influence on the course of Germany in the present war. His sympathies were not with the Turks, and he doubtless felt as the king of Prussia is said to feel, that Christian nations might do better than to form an alliance with the infidel against their fellow-Christians. Once before, though long ago, — and those times and their spirit have long since passed away, - once before did France and England form an alliance, and send their armies to the East, and those armies were blest by the unanimous voice of Christendom, and prayers for their success arose from every church and monastery. Now their object is different, and few can pray for the success of either side; perhaps the prayer that will be heard is that justice may prevail.
There is much more in these volumes equally worthy of being extracted, but here we must close, recommending the careful study of the writings of this lamented author to all our readers acquainted with the German language, without, however, joining in all his sympathies, or indorsing all his political views.
ART. IV.- History of the Life, the Writings, and the Doc
trines of Luther. By N. AUDIN. Translated from the last French Edition, by William B. TURNBULL, Esq. London: Dolman. Baltimore : Murphy & Co. 1854. 2 vols. 8vo.
The Life of Luther, the first volume of which, as translated by Mr. Turnbull, we have received through Messrs. Murphy & Co., is the first of four very interesting and important biographies published by the late M. Audin, and which taken together form a passably complete popular history of the Protestant Reformation, admirably adapted to counteract the bad effects of such publications as M. Merle d'Aubigné's widely circulated romance on the same subject. These biographies, after that of Luther, are the lives of Calvin, Leo the Tenth, and Henry the Eighth. Of these, that of Pope Leo the Tenth is generally regarded as the best, and we are surprised that it has not yet been translated into our language. In composing these works the author had access to the original documents preserved in the archives of the Vatican and the libraries of Florence and Bologna, to the historical collections of Strasburg, Lyons, Mayence, Cologne, and Wittenberg, and to almost any number of German and Latin pamphlets of the time. He made a diligent and conscientious use of the materials at his disposal, and has cleared up many obscure passages in the history of the period, and presented many of the actors in the movement, Catholic as well as Protestant, in a new light. He has robbed the chief Reformers of the unmerited glory with which their partisans had invested them, and presented them to the world in all their native weakness and deformity. He has vindicated the Catholic party of the time, and rescued the principal Catholic opponents of the Reformers from the aspersions cast upon them by their unscrupulous adversaries.
He is candid and impartial, and, so far as we are able to judge, has produced a very reliable, as well as a brilliant and interesting, popular history of the more prominent characters and events of the terrible Protestant movement in the sixteenth century. We hope the whole four works, making nine volumes octavo in the last edition as revised by the author, will be translated into our language, and circulated widely wherever it is spoken. They will make an important addition to our meagre English Catholic library, and contribute much to a right appreciation of the Reformers.
M. Audin, born at Lyons, 1793, originally studied for the priesthood; but not taking orders, he turned his attention to law, and was admitted to the bar. He does not appear, however, to have practised his profession, and he devoted his life to literature, as an author and a bookseller, till his death, which took place February 9, 1851. He was a sincere and earnest Catholic, and has rendered no mean service to religion and historic truth by his works on the Reformation. No man out of Germany, even if in Germany, has done more to separate or disentangle in the popular mind that mingled yarn of history and romance, of truth and fiction, which Protestant authors for these three hundred years have palmed off upon the credulous, not of their own communion alone, as the authentic history of the Protestant movement. He is conscientious and painstaking, but we cannot regard him as very sagacious or profound; and under the relation of style and manner he is not sufficiently grave and dignified to suit our taste or to inspire us with full confidence in his judgment. He takes too much pains to be striking and brilliant, and appears to weigh the phrase more than the thought. One feels that he was writing in the bosom of a frivolous community, for readers who draw their instruction from the saloon, the theatre, or the feuilleton, and are
to be arrested only by a tableau or a dramatic representation of historical events.
Regarded as popular works, as they probably were designed to be, we esteem very highly Audin's biographies; but regarded as studies on the Reformation, they are deficient in philosophical depth and comprehensiveness. They. take, in our judgment, quite too narrow and too superficial a view of the great Protestant movement, and afford us very little aid in understanding its real causes and internal character. The author has rendered a tardy justice to the Catholic party of the time, and proved its immeasurable superiority in solid and polite learning, in civilization and refinement, in virtue 'and manners, to the party of reform, and has shown to the last degree of evidence that the Reformers were coarse and brutal, false and hypocritical, proud and selfish, lustful and ambitious, who shrunk from no baseness, and scrupled at no arts or falsehood that seemed likely to serve their purposes against the Church. This, no doubt, is much, but it is not all that we have the right to expect in times like ours from a Catholic historian of the Protestant Reformation. It is far too little and too superficial to enable us to explain that event. These Reformers had all been reared in the external communion of the Catholic Church, and were many of them priests who had served at her altar. Whence came it that they were capable of such baseness and iniquity? Whence came it that their baseness and iniquity were capable of detaching nearly half of Europe from the faith in which they had been reared, and of founding a party which for three hundred years has been able to dispute the dominion of the world with Catholicity? Here is a grave problem to be solved, and which M. Audin does not solve, or furnish us the means of solving.
Indeed, taking the Reformation as M. Audin leaves it, it must have been an impossible event, an event which nev. er happened, because it never could have happened. We can find in his pages no sufficient reason for it, no adequate means of effecting it. The Reformers were inadequate to the work ascribed to them; all the elements of success were against them. Authority, tradition, learning, culture, talent, habit, manners, customs, all were against them. They were worsted in argument by their Catholic opponents ; they had no clearly defined system of doctrine, no well
concerted plan of action; they were unable to agree among themselves, were torn by intestine divisions, were compelled to blush at the licentiousness and impurity of their disciples, and rendered ridiculous by their continual variations and self-contradictions. There was nothing in their speculations or opinions calculated to impose upon the understanding of a moderately instructed Catholic, or in their practice to win the affections of a single really Catholic heart. Their preaching and writings were fitted only to shock sincere and earnest Catholics, or to disgust and repel them. How then could they succeed ? Yet succeed they did. They baffled princes and nobles, kings and Cæsars, popes and cardinals, bishops and doctors, and gained over the multitude in more than a third part of Europe. How explain this fact? By the depravity of the Reformers? But that depravity itself needs accounting for; and, moreover, on what principle explain its tremendous power? We know that evil naturally triumphs over good, but how can evil joined to weakness triumph over virtue joined to strength, and that even supernatural strength ?
It is clear to the philosophical historian that we cannot explain the Protestant Reformation by the baseness, the iniquity, the corruption, or the ability of the Reformers themselves. No result of such magnitude could have been brought about by some scores of apostate priests and renegade monks. The reform must have sprung from deeper, broader, and mightier causes. It must have already been prepared in the public mind and heart, and Luther can be regarded only as its leading representative, not as its author or founder. He simply gave expression to what was already a general thought or sentiment. Without the preexistence and prevalence of that thought or sentiment, he and his associates would, with all their efforts, hardly have produced a momentary ripple on the surface of European society. There must have been a preparation earlier even than that effected by the quarrels of the Schoolmen and the Humanists, and the labors of those whom Protestants call “the Reformers before the Reformation," such as Reuchlin, Erasmus, and Ulrich von Hutten. Some of the Humanists became Protestants indeed, but the more distinguished leaders and the bulk of the party, as M. Audin proves, remained faithful to the communion of the Church. The Greek language never fell under the anathema of the