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the things; whereas, did we often remember that God calls his people roses, not thorns ; myrtles, not briars ; cedars, palms, or vines, and not willows or bulrushes,—we should feel stirred up to excel in holiness and virtue.
MEMORABLE DAYS IN JULY.
July 1, 1555. John Bradford burnt.
1, 1643. The “ Assembly of Divines" at Westminster was opened.
10, 1509. John Calvin born. » 10, 1665. Joseph Alleine apprehended for preaching, and committed, with seven
other ministers and forty private persons, to Ilchester gaol. 11, 1584. Prince of Orange assassinated. 13, 1698. The foundation-stone of the Orphan House at Halle laid.
14, 1663. Joseph Alleine brought before the sessions at Taunton. » 14, 1789. The Bastile destroyed.
17, 1674. Isaac Watts born.
20, 1683. William, Lord Russell, beheaded.
30, 1540. Three Protestants and four Papists executed together.
It is not our intention to detain our readers with the details of all or many of the obituary notices in this list. They are not without their interest, or they would not have been enumerated here ; but a more than usual demand upon our time forbids our doing more with regard to most of them, than to refer to the sources of fuller inform; ation. For illustration of the notices respecting Cranmer and Bradford we must refer to Fox's Acts and Monuments, or to those more recent compilations (such as Thornton's or Middleton's biographies of the Reformers) from which we have frequently quoted. An original account of Sibbs is given in Clark's “ Marrow of Ecclesiastical History." Notices of Stretton, Fairclough, and Alleine, may be found in Palmer's Nonconformists' Memorial ; and one of Watts in Thornton's Piety Exemplified, to say nothing of Milper's Life of him, or Dr. Johnson's Memoir, which is prefixed to so many editions of his hymn-book, or that which is published in the Religious Tract Society's Christian Biography. Information respecting the emancipation of the Hottentots (the notice of which we took from Moffat's Missionary Scenes and Labours in Africa) may be found in Dr. Philip's Missionary Researches, and Pringle's South Africa. The incident relating to Rafaravavy we must also leave to be looked for in Mr. Freeman's interesting little work on the persecutions in Madagascar. But we trust that there are among our readers--- and here we must own we have our younger readers particularly in view—some who will not consider it a great trouble to find some of this information for themselves; and if we offered no other special recommendation at this time, we would offer one in favour of the work last named, the “Narrative of the persecution of the Christians in Madagascar, by J. J. Freeman and D. Johos."
For the reason above stated, we must also omit all particular details respecting the few remarkable events connected with civil history, which the present list contains. One of them, indeed—Edward the Sixth's death, we have already incidentally noticed : see our February paper. The execution of William, Lord Russell, is a memorable fact, not more interesting in its connexion with the progress of our civil and religious liberties, than as it furnished the occasion of developing one of the most attractive female characters which have adorned the domestic history of England. The history of the Bastile furnishes some most striking moral lessons in the agreeable form of story, and we should gladly have just glanced at one or two of them; but other duties are inexorable, and we restrain our pen.
Of the few events that we can notice, the first in point of time, if not of interest, is the martyrdom of Huss. In the “Gedenktage der Alten Brüderkirche”-“Memorial Days of the Old Church of the Brethren,”—Gnadau, 1821, pp. 1–39,—there is an admirable account of this distinguished Reformer, and his martyr-death. The following is an extract :
“The next day, the 6th of July, which was Huss's forty-third birthday, and a Saturday, the whole council [of Constance] assembled in their fifteenth general session, to decide upon Huss's case. The emperor himself came in state, attended by the princes and all the chivalry of the empire. The Bishop of Riga ordered the accused to be conducted by armed men out of his prison to the cathedral, where,
with the cardinals, bishops, abbots, doctors of divinity and laws, a large multitude of people was assembled. The Cardinal of Ostia presided in the council in the place of the deposed pope. The Emperor sat crowned with his golden crown, upon a royal throne. The Elector and Count Palatine, Ludwig, [Lewis) stood on one side of him with the imperial orb, and the Burggrave of Nuremberg, Frederick, with the sword on the other. The Archbishop of Gnesen read the mass, and invoked the holy Virgin with tears, to intercede with God that he would give success to their efforts to extirpate heresy. The litany was then sung with the introit : EXAUDI NOS, DOMINE! (Hear us, O Lord !) After this came the gospel, “ Beware of false prophets," &c.; and the office closed with the hymn, Veni Creator SPIRITUS. (Creator Spirit, by whose aid, &c.) During mass, lluss was obliged to stand outside the church door, lest the service should be desecrated by his presence. When it was over, he was brought before the council. It was the first and last time that he appeared in a public and general session of the council. He was obliged to mount an elevated stage, that he might be seen by all.”—Gedenktage, &c. pp. 27, 28.
We know nothing which exceeds in moral interest the whole account of Huss's conduct before the council, as it is narrated in the work from which the preceding extract is taken. We must, however, reluctantly abstain from further translation, and content ourselves with the closing scene, as it is described by Middleton, in his Memoirs of the Reformers, vol. ü. pp. 72, 74.
" The last scene in this woful tragedy now approached. Sentence of degradation and anathema having been pronounced, the Archbishop of Milan, assisted by five other prelates, robed him with the vestments, and put a chalice into his hand. “So,' said he, the Jews put a garment on Christ to mock him.'
When fully apparelled, they exhorted him once more to retract; but he turned to the assembly and addressed them thus with tears, “These lords and bishops exhort me to profess before you that I have erred; to which, indeed, if it were a mere human concern, I might be induced : but now I am in the sight of God, and cannot do so without dishonouring the truth, wounding my own conscience, and causing weak brethren to offend. Rather let this vile body die than their salvation should be endangered.' Upon this they took from him the cup, saying, 'O cursed Judas, thus we take from thee the cup of salvation.' “Ay,' he replied, “but I shall drink of it this day in the kingdom of the Father.' They stript off his garments one by one with as many curses, and put a high paper mitre on his head, on which were painted three devils, with the inscription, 'Heresiarch.' "This is better,' said Huss, than the crown of thorns which my Lord bore for me.' "We commit thy soul unto the devil,' said they. • But I,' he replied, “commend it to Jesus Christ.' Being formally delivered over to the secular power, the Elector Palatine was appointed to superintend the execution. Flis books were burned at the door of the church, and he was escorted to the suburbs, to undergo a similar fate. As he passed on, his countenance was cheerful and dignified. One while he sang hynins, at another he prayed. He appealed to God against the judgment of the council, and spoke of the willingness with which Christ vouchsafed, .by a most bitter and ignominious death, to redeem the children of God, chosen before the foundation of the world, from everlasting damnation.' When at the place of execution, he fell on his knees, crying, “Lord Jesus, I humbly suffer this cruel death for thy sake; and I pray thee to forgive all mine enemies.' His paper crown falling off, a soldier put it on again, brutally observing, that he should burn with the devils whom he had served.' When his neck was fastened to the stake by a chain, he said with a smile, My Lord Jesus Christ was bound with a harder chain for my sake; and why should I be ashamed of this. old rusty one?' The faggots being piled round him, and the executioner on the point of setting fire to the wood, the Elector Palatine and Count Oppenheim rode up, and once more exhorted him to retract, as it might not yet be too late to save his life. What I have written and taught,' he replied, was in order to rescue souls from the power of the devil, and to deliver them from the tyranny of sin ; and I do gladly seal what I have written and taught with my blood.'
“ When the flame was applied to the faggots, he sang so loud, that his voice was heard above the crackling of the combustibles, and the shouts of the populace. He called thrice upon his Saviour in these words, “Jesus Christ, the Son of the living God, have mercy upon me!' As the wood was heaped very high, he was soon suffocated. When the rage of the fire abated, his body, half consumed, appeared hanging over the chain, which, together with the post, was thrown down, and a new pile heaped over them. His ashes were carefully collected, and thrown into the Rhine, lest his followers should honour them as relics. But the memory of the just is blessed. His name is had in honour by all the Protestant churches; and the United Brethren solemnly commemorate the day of his martyrdom.”
The next of these ecclesiastical tragedies is the execution of three Protestants and four Papists at the same time and place. This event followed closely upon the execution of Thomas Cromwell, who having been, on the 14th of April, created Earl of Essex, and invested with the garter, was within two months arrested at the council table for high treason, and on the 28th of July beheaded, under a bill of attainder, without a hearing. Such is the instability even of the highest fortune, when it depends on the will of a capricious tyrant. The execution of these Protestants and Romanists, on the 30th of the same month, was another instance of that capricious cruelty by which the reign of Henry the Eighth is so unenviably distinguished. “The Protestants,” says Neal, were Dr. Barnes, Mr. Gerrard, and Mr. Jerome, all clergymen and Lutherans, [that is, they bad espoused generally the cause of the Reformation—the term Lutheran is now used more definitely to distinguish those who adhere to the Augustan Confession, or are supposed to do so.] They were sent to the Tower for offensive sermons preached at the Spittle in the Easter-week, and were attainted of heresy by the parliament, without being brought to a hearing.” The Papists
were by the same act attainted of heresy, for denying the king's supremacy, and adhering to the bishop of Rome. The Protestants were burnt, and the Papists hanged. The former cleared themselves of heresy by rehearsing the articles of their faith at the stake, and died with great devotion and piety; and the latter, though grieved to be drawn in the same hurdle with them they accounted heretics, declared their hearty forgiveness of all their enemies."-Neal, part i. ch. i.
A deep and mournful interest attends the memory of Frith, the first of the English Reformers of the sixteenth century who wrote professedly against the real bodily presence of our Lord in the sacramental bread and wine. He was an excellent scholar, and greatly distin. guished for his learning in the Scriptures, the brilliancy and solidity of his talents, and his exemplary modesty. His abilities procured him the place of a junior canon in Wolsey's new college at Oxford, now called Christchurch. He owed his conversion, instrumentally, to William Tyndale, who laboured earnestly to convince him of the danger of trusting in his own righteousness, and to wean hiin from the destructive errors of the Papacy. The result was, that Frith, publicly professing the principles of the Reformation, was, with several of his associates, thrown into prison, where some of them died in consequence of the maltreatment they received. Frith, however, after a time obtained his liberty, and went to the continent. Here, by visiting the Protestants, and conversing with their leading ministers, he was greatly confirmed in the faith. On his return, passing through Reading, he was put in the stocks for a vagabond ; when, after sitting a long time, and almost perishing with hunger, he requested some of the spectators to call the schoolmaster of the town, who, at that time, was Leonard Cox, a very learned man. Cox having discovered the eminent talents and learning of the sufferer, by conversing with him on the Greek and Latin classics, procured his release, and supplied him with victuals and money. After this he went to London, where, notwithstanding that he frequently changed his apparel and place of residence, he could not long evade the inquisitive eyes of the lord chancellor, Sir Thomas More, who had spies in every part of the kingdom, even along the roads, and had promised a great reward to whoever would give information against him.
It is impossible to clear Sir Thomas More-thongh the pet of those historians who affect great candour in all cases where some despised religion is not concerned-from the charge of cruelty towards more than one of the Protestant sufferers of Henry's reign. That he had many claims on public respect, is not to be denied. But that he persecuted in opposition to his own convictions of truth and justice can be as little denied; and there is reason to believe that his zeal against Frith was inflamed by his having been his antagonist in the controversy respecting the sacraments. The details of Frith's examination and death are truly interesting, but we must refer to Fox for them. The following circumstance we cannot omit:
" When Mr. Frith, as we have seen, was to be examined at Croydon, two of the archbishop's servants were sent to fetch him. Frith's pious and edifying conversation and amiable deportment by the way, made such a favourable impression on the minds of these men, that they contrived between themselves how they might let him escape; and having completed their arrangements, one of them thus addressed him. • Mr. Prith, I am extremely sorry for having undertaken this journey. I am ordered to bring you to Croydon, and knowing the rage of your enemies, I consider myself as N. 8. VOL. IX,