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pointing of this translator. Milton in his printed works has both the Church of God, and the Church of Christ, the latter of which also, as well as the Church of the Lord, is here the reading of some manuscripts. But if we are to trace to others from certain passages, from whole sentences indeed, and from particular sentiments as well as expressions, professedly compiled, an authorship of the whole; then we must be compelled to say that Ames and Wollebius, not to mention others, (and from Wollebius and Ames, his nephew has expressly told us, Milton ordered extracts to be made, when he first thought of a tractate of divinity,) present a similar, indeed a stronger, claim to notice as the writers of the present treatise.
It has been also observed, that Selden is named in this treatise without some distinctive addition of respect. It is thus, that Milton speaks of him, in some of his latest works, simply as " our Selden." Nor has it been overlooked, that the innumerable citations from Scripture in the trea
* See the obligations to both in the manuscript already stated, p. 312. With Wollebius he agrees oftener than with Ames. But see also before, p. 358. With Felbinger there is a very remarkable difference in the present manuscript: for he wrote, in his Demonstrationes Christianæ, “ quod gratia divina per fidem justificati teneantur vitam suam instituere secundum decem præcepta Dei et mandata Christi, &c. ex libris N. T. deprompt." This is not Milton's doctrine in the present treatise.
a More than once in his Consid. to remove Hirelings out of the Church, p. 17.
tise could hardly have been remembered or dictated by Milton. But this, and I must repeat too that many of them are citations by other writers, was also his method: His two short treatises, Of Civil Power in Ecclesiastical Causes, and The Means to remove Hirelings out of the Church, both formed in 1659, long after he was blind, thus contain nearly two hundred cited texts from the Old and New Testament. But in a word, to copy the remarks of an acute investigator of the treatise, "the mind of Milton is stamped on every page. Not only are the known opinions of this remarkable man maintained with the usual seriousness of his character, but the manner in which he arrives at certain newer tenets, adopted by him at a later period of life, bears the same unquestionable impress of his peculiar way of thinking. In the tone all is grave, earnest, and solemn; in the matter there appears not merely a disdain of human authority, but a jealousy of all received doctrines; and finally, to whatever conclusions his arguments may lead, Milton fearlessly pursues and implicitly adopts them. Indeed the more extravagant tenets developed in the work are but the necessary consequences which result from his principles, and at once illustrate most clearly and refute most conclusively the reasonings from which they are deduced. It is not an uncommon case, especially in theology, for those who advance erroneous opinions, when pushed with dan
b Quarterly Review, Oct. 1825, p. 442.
gerous consequences as their necessary result, to disclaim the inferences which themselves have not drawn. But Milton was too severe a reasoner, and too honest a man, to disavow or shrink from the avowal of all legitimate inferences from his own opinions. He was therefore neither appalled nor shaken by the view of his system as a whole; which, however it admits the expediency, and even the duty, of uniting in a particular church, would inevitably produce in its result the isolation of every individual, and the dissolution of every religious community."
Nor may the following criticism, in another country, which notices the religious opinions of Milton, and refers to his various changes of them, be overpassed. "Una criticà delle opinioni politiche e religiose di Milton si può avere nell' opera Ritratti Poetici, Storici, e Critici di varii moderni uomini di lettere di Appio Anneo da Faba cromaziano. Ven. 1796, tom. ii. p. 78; dove si può conoscere quanto sia vero che Milton in giovinezza Puritano, in età matura Anabatista e Indipendente, in vecchiezza di nessuna setta, cangio religion cangiando pelo, com' ivi è scritto. Sembra che l' odio di lui verso il Clero non fosse che una consequenza di quell' amore di libertà, che lo dominava, e cui opponeva un grande ostaculo la somma influenza dell' ordine religioso sulle cose dell' Inghilterra al tempo di quelle fiere sommosse: crederei quindi che piu
odiasse l'abuso di quello che la cosa in se stessa. Un uomo del suo ingegno non poteva non conoscere quanto in massima la forza morale della religione sia necessaria a consolidare la felicità di uno Stato. E' anche da notare che a quei tempi erano molto in voga le questioni teologiche, delle quali niente v' ha di più pericoloso a far cadere in incertezze ed errori."
IN the FIRST SECTION I have omitted the circumstances, which were related in my former account of the life and writings of Milton from the communication of Mr. Richards, of Milton's father-in-law being of Sandford in the vicinity of Oxford, of Milton himself residing at Forest-hill and there writing a great part of his Paradise Lost, and of Mr. Warton's finding there many papers of Milton's own writing. For Mr. Warton himself notices only some papers of Mr. Powell, which he there saw; no other document has been found to shew Mr. Powell's residence or connection with Sandford; and the improbability of Milton's writing at Forest-hill any part of his immortal poem, I have stated.
In the SECOND SECTION I have only to observe, that what Dr. Newton and other biographers of
a See the present account, &c. p. 269, note *.
See the details of his property, &c. pp. 69, 70, &c.
• See before, p. 29.