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their character was invested with a still greater degree of sacredness from its connection, to which they seemed especially entitled, with the memory of Cranmer, of Latimer, of Ridley, and of their fellow-martyrs. 5 To aid these strong feelings in favour of the exiles there was now the reputation they had contracted from their intimacy with learned foreigners, and the great Fathers of the German reformation. There were
many of them in whom the sufferings they had under10 gone, and the religious differences they had witnessed,
had still failed to subdue their vehemence of temper, or to moderate the severity of their opinions. Such were Knox, Whittingham, Fox the martyrologist,
Goodman, Sampson, Whitehead, and others, who after15 wards became distinguished in the early history of
Puritanism. But the exiles in general, having learnt wisdom in adversity, and being supported by the advice of such men as Martyr, Bullinger, Gualter, and
in some degree of Calvin and Beza, were prepared 20 to adopt a tone of moderation, and even to comply
with some observances which they positively disliked, in the hope that they might be able at no distant period to remove the remaining errors. “Id enitimur,”!
said Bp. Horne, in a letter subsequently addressed to 25 Bullinger, “ ut licet male vestiti, bene certe cordati in
opere Domini conficiendo simus.—Alii se ab Ecclesia separantes perinde faciunt ac ii qui cum auram sibi adversam aliquantulum sentiant, nec possint statim,
quo volunt, pervenire, ad meliorem sese ventum re30 servare nolunt, sed exsilientes e navi in pelagus se præcipitant ac submergunt.”
Over all these elements of public sentiment, attracting, and in some degree absorbing them within its own
1 Hess, Catal. vol. ii. p. 220.
commanding influence, was the great character, moral and intellectual, of the sovereign. It would be idle to enlarge on the history of Elizabeth ; but it is necessary to observe that owing partly to her natural disposition, and partly to the circumstances in which she had 5 been placed, she combined these several qualities—a consciousness of her own capacity, a love and a fitness for the exercise of power, a fondness for display, a reverence for old observances, and a jealous maintenance of her prerogative—together with a sincere 10 desire for the welfare of her subjects. With a character thus constituted, Elizabeth was placed in the possession of sovereign power at a time when every one felt the necessity for the firm and vigorous employment of it. No conjuncture could have been 15 more unfavourable for the views of those who were adverse to authority or lovers of change. But decisive as the case was in matters of civil government, it bore with cumulative force on questions connected with the Church. On such subjects the judgment and the 20 passions of Elizabeth were equally engaged in resisting the progress of innovation. She was proud of her scholarship, and gave it a direction to the study of the Fathers m, from which arose an increasing respect for the maxims of the ancient learning. She had con- 25
m“ About this time, the better to inform herself in the truth of Christian doctrine, and the government of the Church in primitive times, she (the Queen) was very diligent in reading the Fathers : of which Sir William Cecil, her secretary, wrote to Cox, Bishop of Ely, in his correspondence with him. Concerning which that 30 Bishop in answer gave his judgment in these words : ' that when all was done, the Scripture is that that pierceth. Chrysostom and the Greek Fathers Pelagianizant. Sometimes Bernard Monachizat.' And he trusted her Grace meddled with them but succisivis horis." Strype, Ann, vol. i. P. i. p. 540.
tracted a personal offence against Knox and Goodman" for their works published at Geneva, on the subject of female government, and by an easy transition a portion of the same resentment was conveyed 5 to all the disciples of the school of Calvin. Under such circumstances it is not difficult to foresee what would be the tendency of the ecclesiastical measures adopted during the reign of Elizabeth.
n In a letter written to sir W. Cecil in Nov. 1559, Calvin laments 10" officium suum in offerendis Commentariis in Isaiam Reginæ non
adeo fuisse gratam ob libellum Goodmanni de imperio muliebri Genevæ ante biennium editum. Quæ olim cum Knoxo de eodem imperio privatim contulerit, candide exponit, seque culpa omni hac
in causa vacare multis evincit rationibus.” Goodman himself writing 15 to Calvin in Feb. 1561 says, "Cum Anglis, qui Genevæ erant,
durius in Anglia agitur.” Hess, Catal. vol. ii. pp. 123. 149.
The revision of the Liturgy in the reign of Elizabeth.
ELIZABETH succeeded to the throne on the 17th
of November, in the year 1558; and the earliest, as it was the most important, of her duties appears to. have been to provide for the peculiar condition of the 5 Church. Although neither of the two great religious parties had as yet reason to look for her unqualified support, each of them was willing to interpret in its own favour the line of strict neutrality, which the Queen thought it prudent to adopt. The Romanists were in 10 all the places of power and influence, and were not only left in the quiet occupation of them, but had also discovered that there were many circumstances, connected with the character of Elizabeth and the security of her crown, which would make her desirous of 15 retaining their good opinion. The Protestants, on the other hand, had the best reason for believing her private sentiments to be in accordance with theirs, and were publicly supported by those eminent men, who were known to be in possession of her confidence. 20 Under these impressions the utmost exertions were made on both sides to improve their respective advantages. Disorder naturally ensued ; and the Queen, anxious to maintain her reputation for neutrality, and to take no decisive step in favour of either party, until 25 the whole question had been fully examined, issued a
proclamation”, “ commanding all manner of her subjects, as well those that be called to ministery in the Church, as all others, that they do forbear to preach or teach, or to give audience to any manner of doctrine 5 or preaching, other than to the gospels and epistles, commonly called the gospel and the epistle of the day, and to the ten commandments in the vulgar tongue, without exposition or addition of any manner sense or
meaning to be applied or added; or to use any other 10 manner of public prayer, rite, or ceremony in the
Church, but that which is already used, and by law received; or the common litany used at this present in her Majesty's chapel, and the Lord's prayer and the
creed in English ; until consultation may be had by 15 parliament, by her Majesty and her three estates of
this realm, for the better conciliation and accord of such causes as at this present are moved in matters and ceremonies of religion.”
In the mean time a committee of divines had been 20 instructed “to review the Book of Common Prayer,
and order of ceremonies and service in the Church, with the design that their report should be laid before the Queen and receive her approval, before it should
be submitted to parliament. At a time when the 25 benefices of the Church were occupied by Romanists,
no assistance could be obtained from a convocation in such an undertaking; and accordingly no questions of the kind were laid before them. It does not even
appear that the committee of divines had any author30 ity given to them under the great seal, being merely
a private assembly meeting at the house of sir Thomas Smith, a doctor of civil law, and under his presidency,
• Strype, Ann. vol. i. P. 2. p. 392.