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of Luther, and hotly persecuted the Sacramentaries of his own diocese, and, just outliving his royal raster, bequeathed his heart to be buried in the still unfinished chantry where the destined masses were never to be sung ; Holbeach, the learned and ardent supporter of Cranmer in his disastrous * down-grade' course, whose name is blurred with lasting reproach for the pliancy with which he allowed his see to be plundered by the base men who used the name of pure religion as a stalking-horse for their own avarice, leaving that which was one of the richest bishoprics one of the poorest.

The Elizabethan bishops, all, we are told, worthy and learned men,' did not add much lustre to the see. Nicholas Bullingham, the first of the series, a gentle and lovable man, was the chief canonist of the time, and proved of no little service to Archbishop Parker in making what is termed in somewhat misleading language the Reformation settlement. His successor, Thomas Cooper, who is said to have owed his preferment to Queen Elizabeth's appreciation of his Latin Dictionary, a man ‘famous for learning and sanctity of life,' soon passed on to Winchester, as did his successor, the inconspicuous William Wickham. Chaderton, who followed, translated from Chester, where he had been chiefly conspicuous for harrying Popish recusants, was a man of learning, having been president of Queen's College and successively Lady Margaret and Regius Professor of Divinity. To the first of James I.'s bishops, William Barlow, we are indebted for the fullest account we have of the Hampton Court Conference, the fairness of which, however, has been impugned as having, in Fuller's words, set a blunt edge on his adversaries' weapons, and a sharp one on his own. He was also one of the revisers who gave us our Authorized Version of the Bible, being one of the company to whom the Apostolical Epistles were entrusted. His successor, Richard Neile, stands badly in the page of history for the gross subserviency by which, to quote Dean Stanley,' he succeeded in climbing the longest ladder of ecclesiastical preferments recorded in our annals,' beginning at Rochester and ending at York, taking Lichfield, Lincoln, Durham, and Winchester as successive steps to his ascent. But it is to him that the Church owes the introduction of Laud to the royal favour, whose powers he was the first to discern, and of whom he continued, in Heylyn's words, the constant and unmovable friend.' His successor in the see was George Mountaigne, who with equal subserviency climbed a nearly equally long ladder, rising from Lincoln through London and Durham to the

1 Memorials of Westminster Abbey, p. 424.

archiepiscopal throne at York, stigmatized by Heylyn as a man inactive and addicted to voluptuousness, loving his ease too well to disturb himself in the concernments of the Church.'' He was followed by the able but not over-scrupulous Lordkeeper Williams, dean of Westminster, who, by his unscrupulous acceptance of Church preferments, was wittily said by Heylyn to be a perfect diocese in himself, being bishop, dean, residentiary, and parson, and all these at one,' and who, like his two predecessors, ended his career as archbishop of York. The decision given by him in the well-known ‘Grantham Controversy’in 1627, about the placing of the Lord's Table, was an unhappy compromise, and, like most compromises, satisfied neither party. He ruled, supporting his verdict with learning and acuteness in his anonymous Holy Table, Name and Thing, that the table should ordinarily stand at the east end of the chancel, but when required for use should be moved down, but that when at the east end it should stand tablewise with its ends east and west, and not altarwise along the wall. After the Restoration the episcopal roll is illustrated by the great name of Robert Sanderson, the greatest of Christian casuists that the English Church has produced, of whom Charles I. used to say, 'When I go to hear Dr. Sanderson preach I take my conscience with me. He was incumbent of Boothby Pagnell, near Grantham, for more than forty years, retaining his cure, though much harassed, all through the Protectorate, and escaping the penalty for reading the Liturgy by repeating the prayers from memory. But well deserved as the honour of the episcopate was, he was too advanced in years to fulfil its duties with efficiency, and in little more than two years he dropped into the grave, and was succeeded by another of the sufferers for the Church's cause, the excellent William Fuller, the honoured friend of Evelyn and the leading Churchmen of that day. The next occupant of the see was the notorious trimmer, the immensely learned Thomas Barlow, who by adroit conformity succeeded in retaining his university and Church preferments all through the changes of the Protectorate, the Restoration, and the Revolution, and though one of the most vehement opponents of the Church of Rome when it was popular to assail her teaching, was one of the first to declare his loyalty in effusive terms on the accession of James II., and even meanly to draw up an address thanking him for allowing the clergy of the Church of England the free exercise of their religion and the enjoyment of their benefices. Having carefully avoided compromising himself on the issue of

Heylyn, Life of Laud, p. 174.

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the famous ' Declaration,' he was equally ready to vote that James had abdicated and calmly took the oaths to his successors. Keeping himself close at his Huntingdonshire palace, never visiting his cathedral city, and scarcely ever seen in any part of his vast diocese, he was contemptuously termed 'the Bishop of Bugden.' With all his vast and multifarious learning and undoubted skill as a casuist, there is hardly any bishop of whom the see of Lincoln has less reason to be proud than Thomas Barlow.

The bishops of Lincoln in the eighteenth century have been divided into men of eminence who were mere birds of passage, and men of inferior parts who settled down as home-birds. To the former class belong Barlow's immediate successor, Tenison, 'that dull man,' as James II. termed him, more honoured, according to Calamy, by the Dissenters than by Churchmen, who owed his promotion to the archiepiscopate to the prominent part taken by him in the Romish controversy ; his far greater successor at Canterbury, Wake, whose earnest though unsuccessful labours for unity and comprehension, as well with the Nonconformists at home and the Protestant communities abroad as with the theologians of the Sorbonne fretting under the denunciations of the Bull Unigenitus,' claim for him a high place among the leaders of the English National Church ; and the erudite Gibson, whose Codex is still the chief authority on the constitutional rights, position, and privileges of the English clergy, who succeeded Tenison at Lincoln, and might have succeeded him at Canterbury, the chief duties of which see he discharged in his declining years, and to which he was considered ‘heir apparent,' had not the conscientious apprehension that his health would not allow him to fulfil the duties of the primacy adequately caused him to decline the tempting elevation.

The Georgian prelates need not detain us long. They were, generally speaking, in common with the bishops of the time, men with some pretensions to learning, estimable enough in their private capacity, climbing to the throne rather by political services than by theology or piety, who fulfilled their functions with regularity and decorum, but seldom rose above the low standard then, with a few brilliant exceptions, unhappily prevailing in the English Church. Reynolds, mentioned by Doddridge as a valuable person,' was succeeded by John Thomas, one of the three of the same name who were bishops at the same time, described as a man of much humour and facetiousness, but too fond of the society of people of rank, and sadly forgetful of his promises. The next bishop, John Green, at one time Regius Professor of Divinity at Cambridge, who ascended from the decanal stall at Lincoln to the episcopal throne, was a dignified and kindly prelate, but indolent and supine, of whose kindness and candour' the Evangelical leader, John Newton, who was ordained by him, spoke warmly. The chief qualification of Thurlow, who halted at Lincoln on his road to Durham, was his being brother to the Lord Chancellor. Pretyman, or Tomline, as he became afterwards, Pitt's tutor at Pembroke College, Cambridge, was a man of very considerable parts. He was Senior Wrangler of his year, and his writings, of which his Refutation of Calvinism is the best known, display much learning and argumentative power. But he was notorious for unblushing nepotism, and his haughty manners rendered him far from popular among his clergy. We may thank George III. for his happy promptitude in making the personal offer of the primacy to Manners Sutton, by which Pitt's intention of raising Pretyman to the archbishopric were forestalled. The aristocratic Pelham succeeded to a sorely impoverished see, the orange having been sucked nearly dry before Pretyman passed to the more lucrative see of Winchester.

The bishops who close the register stand too near our own time to allow us to speak of them as we should desire and as they deserve. But when we call to mind the mitis sapientia of Bishop Kaye, united with statesmanlike powers which would have found suitable exercise in a still higher place in the Church, and with gifts of rule and organization employed with a quiet energy felt for good in every part of his still undivided diocese; the practical wisdom of Bishop Jackson, who, taking up the work in the same spirit brought to it long parochial experience, and conferred solidity and strength to all its institutions, especially those connected with the educational work of the diocese; the multifarious gifts of the justly venerated Bishop Wordsworth, the great scholar, almost unrivalled in his generation, the wide and accurate patristic student, the learned and fearless commentator on the whole volume of the Bible, who by his vigorous administration of his diocese on strictly Church lines, but with entire freedom from narrowness in the resuscitation of the suffragan episcopate, and of the diocesan synod, and the inauguration of the diocesan conference—to omit many more claims to grateful remembrance-conferred lasting benefits on his diocese. We may, indeed, pronounce the see of Lincoln to have been singularly favoured in the bishops who have in recent years been called to rule over it. With how great anxiety, not in the Church at home only, but in the whole Anglican Communion throughout the world, men's hearts are at the present time turning to Lincoln and the present deeply loved occupant of the see and how earnest are the prayers that He who sitteth above the waterfloods' and makes 'the wrath of man praise Him'may overrule coming events for the purification and strengthening of His Church, we need not say.

ART. VIII.-THE LETTERS OF KEATS.

Letters of John Keats to his Family and Friends. Edited by

SIDNEY COLVIN. (London, 1891.) A VOLUME bearing a title such as this has a double claim on our interest as a contribution either to biography or to literature. The familiar correspondence of one who holds a high place among English poets can hardly fail to throw some light on his character and genius, and may deserve publication upon these grounds alone. But, as a rule, it is not necessary for this purpose that his letters should appear as a separate volume by themselves, without biographical setting and with only scanty notes. They fall rather into the sphere of the biographer, who is expected to examine them and extract from them such information as is of value for the true comprehension of the mind and the works of his subject, leaving on one side all that is unnecessary for this purpose. Hence the appearance of a volume which contains the letters alone of Keats, edited by so well-known a critic as Mr. Colvin, and claiming, as the editor's preface intimates, to become the standard edition of his correspondence, leads one to look for more than a merely biographical interest in its contents. It requires to be judged as a contribution to literature as well, and one of the first questions which arises in connexion with it is, Does it entitle us to place Keats among the great letter-writers as well as among the great poets of the English language ?

There are three of the great writers of English literature whose letters form an important part of their work, and who cannot be fully judged without some reference to them. These are Gray, Cowper, and Lamb. Others have written letters which they perhaps themselves desired to be regarded as literature, and many have written letters which are interesting

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