« AnteriorContinuar »
to the 2 MT 07
13e eri Gittis rett, kas reed me from. Cen: Ee as a
pretes: He has takon ne in bazi ad 230*: pe, anibeca senent has been aypisr by hearters lote Tze Liris case te poated: He has Ict let me go. He las one to
a c kenei it with new 1.Se. Had I merrn Kit 2 Etat He ni Doc Lare beard me, but I k * tbat te Lee et b r os tercer Lerries from the triati sis rinkin, aci te bied de to ask forriters of my breiren ba I Lare ceciei I do so with all is keart ard ail by scal, ari I I do so cep intelis still if for their satisfaction the require it. He acis, that in all that had Cortirred DO WITZ had been done to those who bd reprracted him, towards whom he was conscious of no offence, either in thought or action.'" (p. 1.56, 157.)
Even these very mistakes were overruled for good. If onsuccessful as a pastor, he gave himself the more energetically to the work of an evangelist. For this he was eminently fitted :
“ Thuagh gifted with extraordinary powers of successful extempore atterance, he was only thoroughly at home with a mass of eager and intent hearers. Then, especially, his thoughts (always intelligible and perspicious) clothed themselves with impromptu illustrations, the appropriateness of which left an indelible impression on the mind. Endowed, in a high degree, with that sympathetic fibre which enables the speaker to read the hearts of the listeners, he possessed no less that quickness which foresees objections, anticipating or refuting them as they presented themselves to the hearer he songht to persuade.
“It will be inferred from this that he soon betook himself to the work of addressing the masses, and that his own experience of divine life would only strengthen a necessity which arose out of his character and special gifts. Thus, in 1820, when on a pedestrian tour in Switzerland, in the course of which he preached in all the towns through which he passed, I see that at Correndelin he preached in the public square. His ardent faith made him seize eagerly on every opportunity of witnessing to the Gospel. ....
"With reference to that zeal, we cannot do better than insert here an extract from M. de Goltz, in which he refers to my father and F. Noeff. 'They possessed,' he says, "mighty faith and ability, were thoroughly men of prayer, and displayed a boldness in bearing witness to the truth which brought down a signal blessing on their labours. Their individual influence was great; they carried, whereever they went, the witness of Jesus Christ. They never missed an
opportunity afforded by a walk or by an accidental meeting. They never heard a hostile word, they never took a journey, without finding or making an opportunity of speaking of their Saviour. Ever in His presence, they could not help feeling a holy interest in the souls which God threw in their way; nor did they mix with other men without availing themselves of every occasion for this work of soul-gathering.'” (pp. 267—270.)
Malan entered into his rest on the 8th of May, 1864, at the advanced age of seventy-seven. Before his death, he had the happiness of seeing the Church of Geneva again enlightened by the earnest preaching of a pure Gospel, and he was enabled to testify, “that it had pleased God to bring thither again the preaching of the pure Gospel which, said he, “is now making itself heard with more power and clearness than had marked the discourses for which he had been suspended.'” (p. 421.)
the preachine heard with mohich he had been
GLADSTONE'S “JUVENTUS MUNDI.” Juventus Mundi, The Gods and Men of the Heroic Age. By the
Right Hon. W. E. Gladstone. London : Macmillan. 1869.
In the palmy days when Gaisford flourished as Dean of Christchurch, and schools of Law and of Natural History were yet things of the future, we have heard that the study of Homer was well nigh tabooed. It was feared by the great scholar that the tender minds of the youth committed to his care would be corrupted by the archaic language of the Ionian bard, and that taste so vitiated would be unable suitably to relish the exquisite nicety of Attic Greek. So in the days of Cardinal Bembo, we are told* that Paulus Manutius would not employ the words of Cicero's correspondents, though as highly accomplished and polite as himself, and no one would use a case or tense for which they could not find authority in the works of Cicero himself.
It is a trifling indication, but still an indication, of the way in which, within the compass of one generation, old traditions have been shaken off, that Sophocles and Euripides have well nigh given place to Homer; that the press teems with translations of the Iliad and Odyssey ; and that, as in the present volume of Mr. Gladstone, the peculiarities of dialect, and the institutions pourtrayed in these poems, are made the subject of interesting speculation.
It would be out of place for us to occupy our pages with disquisitions upon such subjects. We can, therefore, only say that the volume is full of fascinating reading to those who can in any measure appreciate scholarship. Mr. Gladstone has embodied in it the greater part of the results at which he had arrived in his “Studies on Homer and the Homeric age, 1858.” In its present condensed and modified form, the book is a great improvement on its predecessor, and will no doubt entirely supplant it. Readers, too, who are not conversant with Greek, and only know Homer through the medium of translations, would find their views much enlarged, and their enjoy. ment of the Iliad and Odyssey much increased, by perusing this popular commentary which Mr. Gladstone presents to them. He has not, in our judgment, by any means settled all the questions he discusses; but his volume is a valuable contribution towards the elucidation of them, and a fair conspectas of the present state of information upon many controverted points.
Our motive for noticing the book, apart from the high character and position of the author, is to remark upon certain theological speculations in which he has seen fit to indulge, and which deserve a cursory animadversion from us as the book passes into circulation. The new title which Mr. Gladstone has given to his book is “ Juventus Mundi.” As many are probably aware, it is derived from Bacon's celebrated apophthegm, “Antiquitas sæculi juventus mundi ;” but we think Mr. Glad. stone has taken it intermediately from the speculations of that great dreamer of dreams and suggester of thoughts to other men-we mean, Coleridge. In his Essay X. of his third volume of the “Friend,” we discover, or think we find, the germ of Mr. Gladstone's speculations, or, at any rate, a striking conformity with them. After some remarks upon the childhood of the human race, as made known to us in patriarchal times, Coloridge goes on to say :
“Following next, and as the representative of the youth and approaching manhood of the human intellect, we have ancient Greece, from Orpheus, Linus, Musæus, and the other mythological bards, or perhaps the brotherhoods impersonated under those names, to the times when the republics lost their independence, and their learned men sank into copyists and commentators of the works of their forefathers. That I include these as educated under a distinct providential, though not miraculous, dispensation, will surprise no one, who reflects that in whatever has a permanent operation on the destinies and intellectual condition of mankind at large—that in all which has been manifestly employed as a co-agent in the mightiest revolution of the moral world, the propagation of the Gospeland in the intellectual progress of mankind, in the restoration of philosophy, science, and in the ingenuous arts,-it were irreligion not to acknowledge the hand of Divine providence. The periods, too, join on to each other. The earliest Greeks took up the religious and lyrical poetry of the Hebrews; and the schools of the Prophets were, however partially and imperfectly, represented by the mysteries derived through the corrupt channel of the Phænicians. With these secret schools of physiological theology the mythical poets were doubtless in connexion; and it was these schools which prevented polytheism from producing all its natural barbarising effects. The mysteries and the mythical hymns and pæans shaped themselves gradually into epic poetry and history on the one hand, and into the ethical tragedy and philosophy on the other. Under their protection, and that of a youthful liberty secretly controlled by a species of internal theocracy, the sciences and the sterner kinds of the fine arts, namely architecture and statuary, grew up together; - followed indeed by painting, but a statuesque and austerely idealised painting, which did not degenerate into mere copies of the sense, till the process for which Greece existed had been completed. Contrast the rapid progress and perfection of all the products which owe their existence and character to the mind's own acts, intellectual or imaginative, with the rudeness of their application to the investigation of physical laws and phenomena ; then contemplate the Greeks (['pañol dei raides) as representing a portion only of the education of man; and the conclusion is inevitable.” (Friend, üi. 186–189.)
The resemblance between this passage of Coleridge and the following from that part of his work where Mr. Gladstone is explaining the Olympian system of Homer, is most striking :
“The history of the race of Adam before the Advent is the history of a long and varied, but incessant, preparation for the Advent. It is commonly perceived that Greece contributed a language and an intellectual discipline, Rome a political organisation, to the apparatus which was put in readiness to assist the propagation of the Gospel; and that each of these, in its kind, was the most perfect that the world had produced. I have endeavoured elsewhere* to show, with some fulness, what was the place of Greece in the providential order of the world ; and likewise what was the relation of Homer to the Greeks, and to their part of the Divine plan, as compared with the relation of the Sacred Scriptures to the chosen people of God.t I cannot now enter on that field at large; neither can I part without a word from the subject of the Olympian religion.
"In the works of Homer, this design is projected with such extraordinary grandeur, that the representation of it, altogether apart from the general merits of the poems, deserves to be considered as one of the topmost achievements of the human mind. Yet its character, as it was first and best set forth in its entirety from the brain of the finisher and the maker, is not more wonderful than its
* Address to University of Edinburgh, 1865.
subsequent influence and duration in actual life. For, during twelve or fourteen hundred years, it was the religion of the most thoughtful, the most fruitful, the most energetic portions of the human family. It yielded to Christianity alone ; and to the Church it yielded with reluctance, summoning up strength in its extreme old age, and only giving way after an intellectual as well as a civil battle, obstinately fought, and lasting for generations. For the greater part of a century after the fall of Constantinople, in the chief centres of a Christian civilization in many respects degenerated, and an ecclesiastical power too little faithful to its trust, Greek letters and Greek thought once again asserted their strength over the most cultivated minds of Italy, in a manner which testified to the force, and to the magic charm, with which they were imperishably endowed. Even within what may be called our own time, the Olympian religion has exercised a fascination altogether extraordinary over the mind of Goethe, who must be regarded as standing in the very first rank of the great minds of the latest centuries.
“The Olympian religion, however, owes perhaps as large a share of its triumphs to its depraved accommodations as to its excellencies. Yet an instrument so durable, potent, and elastic, must certainly have had a purpose to serve. Let us consider for a moment what it may have been.
We have seen how closely, and in how many ways, it bound humanity and deity together. As regarded matter of duty and virtue, not to speak of that highest form of virtue which is called holiness, this union was effected mainly by lowering the Divine element. But as regarded all other functions of our nature, outside the domain of the life to-godward, all those functions, which are summed up in what St. Paul calls the flesh and the mind, the psychic and the bodily life, the tendency of the system was to exalt the human element by proposing a model of beauty, strength, and wisdom in all their combinations, so elevated that the effort to attain them required a continual upward strain. It made divinity attainable, and thus it effectually directed the thought and aim of man
'Along the line of limitless desires.' “Such a scheme of religion, though failing grossly in the government of the passions, and in upholding the standard of moral duties, tended powerfully to produce a lofty self-respect, and a large, free, and varied conception of humanity. It incorporated itself in schemes of notable discipline for mind and body, indeed of a life-long education; and these habits of mind and action had their marked results (to omit many other greatnesses) in a philosophy, literature, and art, which remain to this day unrivalled or unsurpassed.
“ The sacred fire, indeed, that was to touch the mind and heart of man from above, was in preparation elsewhere. Within the shelter of the hills that stand about Jerusalem, the great archetype of the spiri. tual excellence and purification of man was to be produced and matured. But a body, as it were, was to be made ready for this angelic soul. And as when some splendid edifice is to be reared, its diversified