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Such as do find their faith upon
The holy text of pike and gun;
Decide all questions by
Infallible artillery;
And prove their doctrine orthodox
By apostolic blows and knocks;
Call sword and fire and desolation
A godly thorough reformation,
Which always must be carried on
And still be doing, never done;
As if religion were intended
For nothing else but to be mended;
A sect whose chief devotion lies
In odd perverse antipathies;
In falling out with that or this
And finding somewhat still amiss.


Compound for sins they are inclined to,
By damning those they have no mind to;
Still so perverse and opposite
As if they worshipped God for spite.

his son

Although Bunyan's inspiration is thoroughly Puritan in spirit, and although he served in the Parliamentary John Banyan, army, yet his great allegory was written while 1628-1688. he lay in prison during the Restoration period, and was not printed till 1677. Bunyan was born at Elstow near Bedford. His father was a tinker, and

was bred to the same trade, which was not one held in much respect. In 1645 he served in the Parliamentary army. As a young man he was subject to religious mania, imagining, like Luther, that devils surrounded him, and that he could hear their promptings to evil. The fact that he experienced in his own soul religious melancholy and despair, and that his imagination was so vivid that hallucinations were real to

him, gives his great allegory, “ Pilgrim's Progress," an air of reality that is entirely absent from the “Faerie Queene.” It is the journal of a soul passing from the conviction of sin, through despair to religious peace. To resume the outline of Bunyan's life: he joined the Baptists, became a preacher, and after the Restoration was confined in Bedford jail, with short intervals of partial liberty, for twelve years. In 1671 Charles II. annulled the penal laws against Romanists and Protestant Nonconformists, and Bunyan then regained his liberty. During his imprisonment he learned the trade of lace-making as a means of livelihood, and began “ Pilgrim's Progress.” This was published about 1678. Previously he had written a history of his conversion called “ Grace Abounding.” In 1684 he wrote the second part of “ Pilgrim's Progress," and soon after another allegory called the “ Holy War.” He became one of the greatest popular preachers of England.

Bunyan's two books were the Bible and Foxe's “ Acts and Monuments of the Martyrs,” but his knowledge of Pilgrim's

these was exhaustive. Pilgrim's Progress Progress.has passed through more editions than any other book except the Bible, and is unique in this, that cultured people overlooked the palpable fact that it was a work of genius until it was forced upon their notice by the verdict of the unliterary. It is popular literature very much as the old ballads are. It went through some ten or twelve editions before the author died, and he himself says with pardonable pride that “in New England his dream was the daily subject of the conversation of thousands, and was thought worthy to appear in superb binding."

First among the literary merits of “ Pilgrim's Progress – besides the subtle qualities of unity and vigor of narration is the homely force of Bunyan's vocabulary.

Apollyon straddles across the path and says to Christian, “No further shalt thou come, for here will I spill thy soul.Giant Despair beats the pilgrims in the " stinking dungeon" with a “grievous, crabtree cudgel.” 6. When Mr. Cerberus and Mr. Profane did meet they were presently as great as beggars.” “ By this time they were got to the Enchanted Ground where the air naturally tended to make one drowsy. And that place was all grown over with briars and thorns. Nor was there on all this ground so much as one inn or victualling house therein to refresh the feebler sort. Here, therefore, was grunting and puffing and sighing, while one tumbleth over a bush, another sticks fast in the dirt, and the children some of them lost their shoes in the mire. While one cries out, I am down,' and another, •Ho, where are you?' and a third, “The bushes have got such fast hold on me, I think I cannot get away from them.'”

The second merit which strikes us is the life and naturalness of the characters. This is partly a result of the extremely natural and homely language they use. In the preface to “Grace Abounding,” Bunyan says, “ I could have stepped into a style much higher than this in which I have here discoursed, and could have adorned all things more than here I have seemed to do, but I dare not. I may not play in the relating of them, but be plain and simple, and lay down the thing as it was." He has the same instinctive regard for “ the thing as it was” in his “ Vision” and deals with his imagination as truthfully as he does with his memory. In the trial of Faithful in the town of Vanity Fair, he gives what is no doubt a realistic transcript of the deliberation of one of the cruel Judge Jeffreys's juries :

“ Then went the jury out, whose names were Mr. Blindman, Mr. No-good, Mr. Malice, Mr. Love-lust, Mr. Live-loose, Mr. Heady, Mr.



High-mind, Mr. Enmity, Mr. Liar, Mr. Cruelty, Mr. Hate-light, and Mr. Implacable. ... And first, Mr. Blindman, the foreman, said, “I see clearly that this man is a heretic.' Then said Mr. No-good, ' Away with such a fellow from the earth. “Ay,' said Mr. Malice, ‘for I hate the very

looks of him.' ... · Hang him, hang him,' said Mr. Heady. · A sorry scrub,' said Mr. High-mind. My heart riseth against him,' said Mr. Enmity. “He is a rogue,' said Mr. Liar. Hanging is too good for him," said Mr. Cruelty. Then said Mr. Implacable, “Might I have all the world given me I could not be reconciled to him, therefore let us forth with bring him in guilty of death,' and so they did.”

In giving characteristic names to his minor characters and individualizing them with a subtle harmony with the names, Bunyan is equal to Thackeray and Dickens. Bunyan's names are of course allegorical, but they are not mere abstract qualities tacked on as appellations; they help tell the story. Among them may be mentioned “Mr. By-ends,” “Mr. Worldly-wiseman,” “Mrs. Bat’seyes,” and “Madam Wanton.” “ A young woman, her name was Dull,” “ Old Mr. Honest,” and many others are no less racy and descriptive.

In the last chapters of “ Pilgrim's Progress,” where the company wait in the land of Beulah by the side of the great river for the summons to cross to the eternal city, Bunyan reaches a dignified pathos unexampled in all literature. If this book were in an unknown tongue, the scholars of the world would sound its praises, but as it is folk literature and perfectly intelligible, it is neglected for matter entirely inferior. It remains one of the greatest books in the English language, and no other nation has anything of the same kind to compare with it.

In devotion to what he considered his religious duty, Bunyan was not less heroic than Milton, and his affections were so much stronger than Milton's that his conduct implies a far more attractive type of heroism.


1660 he was sent to Bedford jail on the charge of “preaching at several conventicles to the great disparagement of the government of the Church of England.” As he would not “ conform ” at the end of three months, he was recommitted. He was then thirty-two, and had a wife and four small children, one of whom was blind. They had nothing to live on but the charity of good people. “I found myself,” said Bunyan, “encompassed with infirmities. The parting with my wife and poor children hath often been to me in this place as the pulling of the flesh from the bones, and that not only because I am somewhat too fond of these great mercies, but also because I should have often brought to my mind the many hardships, miseries, and wants that my poor family was like to meet with should I be taken from them, especially my poor blind child, who lay nearer my heart than all besides. Oh, the thought of the hardships I thought my poor blind one might go under would break my heart to pieces.

heart to pieces. •Poor child,' thought I, what sorrow art thou like to have for thy portion in this world! Thou must be beaten, must beg, suffer hunger, cold, nakedness, and a thousand calamities, though I cannot now endure the wind should blow upon thee.'

It is his great warm heart in which the family affections are securely anchored, no less than his devotion to an ideal, possibly a narrow ideal, of duty — that has made the English Puritan, the true American citizen, the founder of states that endure.

In the Restoration period Dryden was a literary worker of the highest class, a man of vigorous understanding and gifted with the lyrical faculty, but not of an emotional or imaginative nature delicate enough, nor of a moral nature strong enough, to entitle him to the first rank,

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