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Different Degrees of Ritual Service.


given for extempore praying, all the dangers springing out of the incapacity, extravagance, vanity, and vulgarity of the individual minister at once come into play; and we think it not improbable that many of those who have been deterred from the Presbyterian worship by the exhibition of such peculiarities would still prefer the service of the Episcopal Church. Still we can see no better solution of the difficulty than a modification of this proposal. Suppose that the service of an ordinary Sunday commenced with the Liturgy, and that the option were left to the minister of using, after the sermon, a formula which should be offered him, as is now the practice in many of the Protestant churches of Germany, or of concluding the service with an extemporaneous prayer. The feelings, both of pastor, and people, we may presume, are warmed by the spirit of devotion which has pervaded the services in which they have already engaged, and, such being the case, few of the objections usually urged against extempore prayer would attach to it, if introduced to a moderate extent, and according to a directory, in this part of the service. The ritual portion of the service need not be taken so strictly as not to admit of a certain modification by the clergyman, and should the constant repetition of the same prayers be thought objectionable, there is no reason why he should not be furnished with a series, say of four or even eight forms, so that their recurrence need not be oftener than every fourth or eighth Sunday. As regards the responses, on the other hand, in order to secure the active participation of the people, we think it highly important that they should be invariable.

Another mode of extrication, but surrounded if possible with greater difficultes, presents itself; viz., that the service should be different in different churches. Now if this diversity were made a matter of rule, we can understand how a breach in the body, what Puseyites call a rending of Christ's garment,'would be the immediate consequence; but we do not see that practically it might not come to be the custom that in some churches the service should be more ritual, in others less so, according to the wishes and feelings of the congregations. If the principle of ritual prayer were once recognised, there might be in every large town one or two churches, in which it was more closely adhered to than was general in the Church, in which there should be singing in parts by a well-organised choir, an organ, if such were deemed expedient, and, in short, the ordinary appliances and means towards a well-regulated divine service, whilst, at the same time, the Liturgy was treated with such freedom as to prevent any approach to that wor


shipping of forms to which Presbyterians so justly object in Episcopal churches. By some such means, we cannot but think that many might be conciliated, and led back to the fold of Presbytery, whose quarrel is not with her tenets nor with her government, but with the uncertainty and bareness of her service.

We are quite aware that any such proposal as this, if made at once in the General Assembly, even by the most popular and influential divine, would probably bring down upon him a torrent of abuse, to which no prudent man would be willing to expose either himself or his cause, and that he could not safely calculate on the support even of those whose real opinions were entirely in accordance with his own. The pear is not ripe, but we believe it is ripening*; and if what we have here said should have the effect of in any degree familiarising men's minds in Scotland with the fact, that a judicious use of formal prayer is not only consistent with the purest teaching of Christian doctrine, but with the universal usage of the Reformed Churches in their purest days, we hope we shall have done something towards paving the way for a change which we conscientiously believe would increase the efficiency of our National Church. Of the opinions of individuals, so long as these opinions are not publicly expressed, we are not entitled publicly to speak; but thus much we may say, that we have good grounds for thinking that the views which we have propounded are neither new nor strange to many of the more liberal, and to some of the most influential ministers of the Church of Scotland. Dr. Cumming fired no random shot when he said, in speaking of the combination of formal and extempore prayer in Knox's Liturgy, ‘This ' arrangement would have conciliated the great bulk of the 'Scottish clergy in the seventeenth century, and, I believe, "would be generally acceptable in the nineteenth.' If the clergy and people of Scotland could once be satisfied, (and we see no reason why they should not) that formal prayer would never be allowed to transgress the limits which Coleridge has assigned to ceremonies generally, viz. of 'pure glass to see heaven through, not dyed in the gorgeous crimsons and purple blues and greens,


* A step was taken in this direction, three years ago, when the General Assembly appointed a Committee to prepare a Book of Devotion, with a series of Scriptural lessons, for the use of our colonists who have no minister within reach, people at sea, and others similarly precluded from public worship. The publication of such a set of devotional forms by the authority of the Church, would be a great stride towards a Prayer Book for use in churches.


Mallet du Pan.


of the drapery of saints and saintesses,' then we believe it might be re-introduced with an universality of consent that would silence the tongue of Jenny Geddes herself.

ART. VII.-Mémoires et Correspondance de Mallet du Pan, pour servir à l'histoire de la Révolution Française. Recueillis et mis en ordre par A. SAYOUS. 2 vols. 8vo. Paris: 1851.

ACCORDING to the Tuscan chroniclers of the middle ages, a street quarrel in the little city of Pistoia engendered two factions, whose animosity soon involved the whole population of that important place, both noble and plebeian. One party expelled the other. The exiles dispersed themselves in the neighbouring cities; half Tuscany espoused the cause of the Whites, half that of the Blacks. From Tuscany the feud spread over the rest of Italy, becoming incorporated in the greater contest between Guelfs and Ghibellines; and the party names and banners of an insignificant provincial dispute were adopted in the mighty struggle between the Sceptre and the Crosier, between civil order and theocratic anarchy.

Something of the same kind recurred in European history, when the republic of Geneva accomplished a little cycle of its habitual revolutions between 1760 and 1782. Ever since the time of Calvin it has been the destiny of that city to act, indirectly, a part in the affairs of Europe, not only out of all proportion to its statistical importance, but far beyond what the mere intelligence and energy of its citizens, great as they are, would seem entitled to ensure it. Such was the case in the age of religious discord: -

'What though their native kennel be but small,
Bounded betwixt a puddle and a wall,

Yet their victorious colonies are sent

Where the North Ocean girds the continent;'—

and once more, in the age of civil controversies, the quarrels of Geneva contrived to embrace Europe. Voltaire alternately irritated and affected to moderate them: Rousseau set forth their polemics in pamphlets, destined to become the political manuals of the regenerators of the world. Their successive bands of fuorusciti, political exiles from home or adventurers in search of political fortune abroad, were doomed to appear in many a part on greater stages. Necker and his daughter, Clavière, Dumont, and many more, took part in the French Revolution: Delolme enlightened England by expounding the conventional theory of


her constitution for the first time in a readable shape; while his neighbour Marat of Neufchatel was trying his 'prentice hand' in the Wilkite controversy. Gallatin achieved the fame of a statesman in America; Divernois pressed political economy and statistics into Pitt's service, and irrefragably demonstrated the overthrow of French revolutionary government by financial exhaustion, a demonstration which it has been the fashion to repeat on every successive crisis; and Mallet du Pan brought to the cause of Royalism a disposition predisposed to reactionary views, as well as an intellect sharpened to uncommon acuteness in political matters, by the struggles between 'negatives' and representatives,' bourgeois' and natifs,' in which his youth had been involved, and in which, like most ardent politicians, he had originally taken the democratic side.

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The fate of this eminent publicist,' whose name was once widely known both by the report of friends and enemies, has been no uncommon one. Endowed with striking powers of appreciating men and events, with much eloquence and a popular style, he had many of the qualities of a great political writer; and his opportunities of acquiring the necessary knowledge were singularly favourable. But he was a journalist, by necessity as well as choice. He had to earn the bread of the day by working the political vein of the day. The truths which he wished to teach were to be enforced by endless repetition, by argument and illustration of a temporary character; by statements of fact often hazarded on imperfect evidence, and liable to be modified by the next day's information. And when he came to systematise his thoughts in works of greater length, as in the Consi'dérations sur la Révolution,' which form his chief title to literary fame, it may be said with truth, energetic as that performance unquestionably is, that the thoughts of the practised journalist did not gain by being thus served up second-hand in the shape of a pamphlet, almost as temporary in its interest, and yet less stamped with the fervid impress of strictly contemporary writing.

Moreover, he had the disadvantage of being all his life on the unpopular side; a disadvantage which none can estimate but those who have struggled manfully in the same obscure and unprofitable game. He set himself at work to write down the Revolu tion, long before the hopeful, the ardent, and the popularityseeking classes had left off crying it up. Men could not bear to see their illusions dispelled, one by one; their boasted principles exposed as hollow forms; their party favourites detected, and exposed to general contempt. The peculiarly painful character of such writing is, that it inflicts a constant wound on the personal


A Journalist by Profession.


vanity of the reader; who is conscious of having staked his own self-complacency, perhaps his little private share of reputation for judgment, on the success of that which has failed, the truth of that which has been demonstrated untrue. Prophets of evil, in revolutionary times, are not more popular now than they were in Troy or Samaria: and, hard as the doom may seem, their unpopularity rather increases than diminishes with the accomplishment of their predictions.

And it was the peculiar fate of Mallet to undergo twice over this peculiar discipline of adverse fortune. He had to undertake again, to the banished Royalists of France and the leaders and statesmen of the European coalition, the duties of an unwelcome monitor, after having performed them to the Parisian public. His far-sightedness was again to shame the blind enthusiasm of those he addressed. He had to point out the hollowness of their hopes, the mistaken bases of their estimates, the weakness of their political and military combinations, the inveterate ignorance under which they laboured of the instincts and sentiments of the great mass of the people everywhere, but in France especially an ignorance almost as characteristic of professed politicians in 1852 as it was in 1792. Undoubtedly the monotony of this strain of thought the tone of disappointment, also, incident to a life of failures and personal privations in some degree affected the value, as well as the success, of his judgments. He could not prophesy good, for he saw it nowhere. He had no belief in any material or moral progress going on under those external fluctuations of the tempest on which his experienced eye was fixed. He saw no signs of salvation in any quarter, and did not even calculate on the breaking down under its own weight of the enormous power against which he strove; and died a sceptic as to the resurrection, not of France only, but of Europe.

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Mallet du Pan sank, therefore, not unnaturally, into the category of the many obscure writers of the first Revolution: writers of whom numbers would have achieved a high place in times of less redundant political intelligence. For although the general character of newspaper writing may have improved since then, no one can read these pages and deny that the best journalists of that age were as fully equal to those of our own in high political intelligence, as the forgotten periodicals of Camille Desmoulins, Peltier, and others, show them to have been equal in point of wit and pungency.

But for public writers of this order there is sometimes a second period of posthumous life; when the generation in which they laboured is at rest, and a new one in the field, to repeat

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