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AND SOLD BY M. OGLE, AND W. COLLINS, GLASGOW; J. FINLAY,
NEWCASTLE; A. BROWN & Co. ABERDEEN; AND
LONGMAN & Co. LONDON.
"SEMPER ego auditor tantum! Nunquamne reponam, vexatus toties?" said I to myself, when looking over the Letters of ANGLICANUS. Shall I hear taunts and reproaches from the North and from the South, poured out without mitigation or mercy on me and all my tribe, without one effort to repel what I am not at all conscious of having merited? Must I stand like a pillar of stone, to which every conceited coxcomb who pretends to wit, may affix his pasquinade, and against which every heavy blockhead who pretends to none, may launch his anathemas with impunity? I will not. I am not aware that any precept of religion, or any feeling of charity, ought to tie up my hands from defending myself, when assailed by foolish and unthinking men, in the mere wantonness of unprovoked abuse. At all events, the charity that sanctioned the attack, cannot pretend to be very grievously outraged by the defence. It is true, that to lash a cur, or to cudgel an ass, is neither a very dignified nor pleasant exercise, nor would any man willingly engage in it. But if the snarl of the one, or the bray of the other, become so loud and incessant as to be a nuisance, or still worse, if they be mistaken for the roar of a lion, then it is necessary, both for their own sakes, and for the sake of those who encourage their folly, to send them back to the kennel and the crib, and feelingly, if possible, persuade them what they are.
This must be my apology for wasting a few hours on the notice of such a thing as the Letters of ANGLICANUS. All the other parties against whom that writer pronounces the sentence of condemnation, can well afford to let his censures pass in silence. But it is not so with the ministers connected with the Church of Scotland, who are settled in the North of England. From various circumstances, which it is unnecessary to enumerate, any thing said against them finds ready credence. They have many difficulties to encounter. In most instances their duties are laborious, and their remuneration scanty. At this they repine not. They know that they are placed in a situation of ease and of affluence, when compared with that of the men whom they are most anxious to imitate. They have often occasion, by an unostentatious continuance in well-doing, to "put to silence the ignorance of foolish men." They not unfrequently meet with those who, like ANGLICANUS, cannot separate the possession either of intellectual culture, or of moral worth, from the possession of wealth,who will be very civil to piety when they meet it in genteel company, but who, elsewhere, have no desire to cultivate its acquaintance. To such men they have nothing to say. But when a writer like ANGLICANUS, with the most unfeeling heartlessness, makes an unprovoked attack on those whom he conceives to be incapable of any effectual resistance, and on the very ground of their poverty, attempts to diminish both their comfort and their usefulness, by holding them up to the contempt of their neighbours, and of their flocks, I conceive it would be as unjustifiable a disregard of character as that manifested by the London Bible Society Committee, whom he so feebly defends, to allow the attack to pass unnoticed. The utter worthlessness of the Pamphlet in which the attack is made, is no reason why it should not be repelled, as that Pamphlet has not only been advertised, but puffed too in the most unconscionable style, in the Newcastle newspapers, in the very midst of us; and we all know how many are led away by mere words, and consider that which is not answered to be unanswerable.
I take upon myself the duty of noticing this Pamphlet the