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whilst his censure was of the mildest and the most inefficient kind. So strong were the adherents of the new theology in the university, that scarcely any had the power to withstand them, or the courage to rebuke them. A very large proportion of the tutors were also more or less imbued with the same Romish theology. In such circumstances it is scarcely to be wondered at, that the tractarian leaders became bolder and bolder, and approximated nearer and nearer towards Romish doctrine and Romish practice. It was openly declared that the church of England must be unprotestantized, and one who holds a fellowship at Magdalene College, since known by the name of cursing Palmer, in a pamphlet, published under the very eyes of the university, anathematised all things protestant at home and abroad, not excepting the church of England, if that must be considered protestant. By this time many belonging to the university of Oxford became so saturated with Romanism, that they felt their position as members of the church of England very embarrassing; and especially did it appear perplexing to them how, with their Roman catholic belief, they could conscientiously sign the Thirtynine Articles, or continue in the enjoyment of advantages and emoluments which were possessed on their presumed adherence to these Articles. To relieve the minds of such, and, as it was afterwards acknowledged by the author of Tract 90, to prevent their withdrawing from the church of England, and uniting themselves with a church the doctrines and practices of which they approved and admired, a way was ingeniously shewn how they might expound the Thirty-nine Articles, so as to make them perfectly compatible with the Tridentine decrees. This was the production of Mr. Newman, the master-spirit of the whole movement; the original expedient was that of the Jesuit Sancta Clara, but as wrought out and applied by Mr. Newman, it was perhaps as clever, as acute, and as dishonest a piece of casuistry as the world ever saw. Throughout the kingdom it produced, from all whose moral sensibilities had not been impaired by strong party feeling, one simultaneous burst of surprise and indignation. Will nothing now be done to check the movement? Can no power be brought to bear on such dishonesty? Must this moral poison be allowed to taint the very fountains of literature and theology? Something is indeed done; but every attempted check proves feeble and ineffective. A war of pamphlets ensues, in which Mr. Ward first distinguishes himself as an avowed champion of tractarianism, ready to do battle in defence of Mr. Newman and his opinions. The bishop of the diocese and the authorities of the university are loudly called on to inter
pose their influence; the former in a mild and gentle manner, more apparently for the sake of peace than from any strong disapprobation of the opinions advanced in the Tracts,* requests or advises his friend to discontinue them; on the part of the latter, the Hebdomadal Board, now for the first time lifting up its voice in this controversy, issues the following declaration.
After recounting the statutes requiring subscription, and referring to Tract 90,
• Resolved, that the modes of interpretation, such as are suggested in the said tract, evading rather than explaining the sense of the Thirty-nine Articles, and reconciling the subscription to them, with the adoption of errors, which they were designed to counteract, defeat the object, and are inconsistent with the due observance of the above-mentioned statutes. Delegates' Room, March 15, 1841.
P. WYNTER, Vice-chancellor.'
But the movement goes on, unobstructed by these proceedings. Dr. Hampden, the Regius Professor, almost the only man in the university who, from his station, his talents, and his learning, might have made head against it, was in a great measure crippled and paralyzed through the prejudice which the Newman and Pusey party had, with a zeal worthy of a better cause, and a disingenuousness disgraceful to any cause, succeeded in raising against him, and which issued in the cruel and unjust measures which were sanctioned by convocation. An attempt has since been made by the same authorities who introduced these measures to repair the mischief, but their well-meant efforts were unsuccessful, and the stigma was not removed. Still the Regius Professor was able to make a firm stand, in the case of Macmullen, and, after a long struggle, to succeed, in establishing his right to give theses to the candidate for the degree of B. D., by which the Romanist was compelled to bring out his sentiments on the Eucharist and tradition, and so lost bis degree.
The condemnation of Dr. Pusey's sermon on the Eucharist, by the six doctors appointed by the vice-chancellor, was rather a temporary mortification than any severe check to the tractarian movement. It still gathered strength and increased
* We understand that two sons and two nephews of the Bishop of Oxford, together with the bishop's chaplain, who is an ultra tractarian, subsequently signed the address to the proctors, thanking them for interposing their veto to prevent the condemnation of Tract 90, in the convocation of the 13th of February. The Oxford Chronicle, which has been all along a close and shrewd observer of the movements of tractarianism, observes that, “Mr. Newman rules Dr. Pusey, Dr. Pusey rules Archdeacon Clarke, and he and the bishop's chaplain rule the bishop."
in activity. In various parts of the kingdom, alterations were made in the decorations and services of the churches, to assimilate both as nearly as possible to the Romish pattern. A vigorous attempt was also made to prevent the election of Dr. Symons to the vice-chancellorship of the university, in consequence of the part he had taken in the condemnation of Dr. Pusey's sermon, which, though unsuccessful, produced such an exhibition of strength and determination as might well render any future vice-chancellor, till they should obtain one of their own stamp, careful how he incurred their displeasure. By this time, such had been the progress of the Romanizing system in the university of Oxford, that at least one half of the tutors were believed to be more or less under its influence. And in these circumstances it was that Mr. Ward's book on the ‘Ideal of a Christian Church’ was published, which occasioned the memorable struggle to which the works at the head of this article refer, and the full effects of which none can calculate. One object of Mr. Ward in thus writing was to vindicate the highly Romanizing articles of the British Critic from the animadversions of Mr. Palmer, himself one of the earliest and most active of the Oxford agitators; but its principal design seems to have been to bring the contested point of holding the doctrines of the Roman catholic church, while subscribing the articles of the English church, to an issue. Though the heads of houses had formally expressed an opinion condemning the mode of subscription advocated by Tract 90, their decision was set at nought by the tractarian party, and the venerable board itself was spoken of in no very measured terms of indignation and contempt. The question, it was declared, was still open. The holding of Romish doctrines had not been declared incompatible with subscription to the Thirty-nine Articles by any ecclesiastical or university authority, to which they were bound to defer. This work, then, was a fearless challenge, distinct and loud, sent ringing into the ears of the university, which was dared to take it up. The Reformation which made the church of England what it is, was branded with infamy, and treated with indignant scorn. The reformers in which the church had been accustomed to glory, and some of whom had as martyrs sealed their testimony against popish errors with their blood,” were represented as unprincipled innovators, the church itself was described as dishonoured, degraded, and deprived of the most valuable aids to devotion by separation from the church of Rome; and her return, with humble submission and dutiful obedience, was a consummation devoutly to be wished.
* Cranmer, Ridley, and Latimer were burnt in Oxford, and just in the front of Mr. Ward's college.
This was, indeed, an adventurous step, the straight forward and manly bearing of which none could question, though of its prudence and policy a considerable portion of the tractarian host had serious doubts. But a bold stroke often succeeds, where the cunning of artifice fails. Deeds of high daring, rash and reckless as they may be deemed by more cautious spirits, frequently intimidate opposition, throw confusion into the ranks of the enemy, and inspire the more feeble of their own party with an enthusiasm to follow on where bravery leads. Such was the strength of Mr. Ward's party, their spirit and energy were so well known, so little discouragement had they received from high quarters, and such was the critical state of things in the church itself, that any decisive measures against this party would be apparently attended with so much danger as to render it highly probable that the university would decline any effective interference; and should this be the case, the great point would be gained, silence would be construed as consent, whether willingly or reluctantly given, the university might be filled by those who had embraced the whole cycle of Roman doctrine,' who might go on unmolested with their work of unprotestantizing, till either the church of England should become a kind of minor papacy, or be reconciled to the church of Rome, and again received into her maternal bosom, as a somewhat profligate, but at length, penitent daughter. But so startling and alarming was this daring movement of the coadjutor of Mr. Newman and Dr. Pusey, that numerous and strong appeals were made to the vice-chancellor on the imminent danger which now threatened the protestant establishment, and the necessity of adopting some decisive measures to meet the present exigency. Accordingly the Hebdomadal Board met on the 13th of December, and announced their resolutions, which, as they have been copied in most of the journals, and our space is limited, we need not here repeat further than to say, that, after selecting several passages from his book, condemning in strong terms the English reformation, extolling the church of Rome, from which the church of England had sinfully departed, and to which it should return with deep repentance, declaring that the spirit and teaching of the Articles and the Prayer Book were
absolutely contradictory,' that it is by divorcing the dry wording of the Articles from their natural spirit' that an orthodox believer' accepts them, and that thus 'their prima facie meaning is evaded, and the artifice of their inventors thrown back in recoil on themselves; that though the 'XIIth Article is as plain as words can make it on the evangelical side, its natural meaning may be explained away, and that he himself' subscribes it in a non-natural sense,' rejoicing that he finds the
to them, and that f their inventorsh Article is as
whole cycle of Roman doctrine gradually possessing numbers of English churchmen,' and declaring that he said plainly three years ago, that in subscribing the Articles he renounced no one Roman doctrine.' After producing these extracts, the propositions which were now to be submitted to the house of convocation, on the 13th of February, 1845, were stated; these were to condemn Mr. Ward's sentiments, to deprive him of his degree, and to procure in future a bona fide subscription.
Before we proceed, a few words on the constitution and government of the University of Oxford, as far as the proceedings against Mr. Ward are concerned, may not be superfluous. This university comprises nineteen colleges and five halls, each of which, with its principal, master, warden, or provost, its viceprincipal, &c., and its fellows, tutors, and other officers, has its separate jurisdiction. Everyone who enters any college or hall, has, at his matriculation, to sign the Thirty-Nine Articles. On taking a degree, he has again to subscribe these articles, and also the three articles mentioned in the thirty-sixth canon of 1603, in the presence of the proctors. The chief officer of the university is the chancellor, who, with considerable powers, is chosen for life. The vice-chancellor, however, who is head of one of the colleges, performs the principal duties of the office, and though annually elected, generally retains office for four years. The laws by which the university is governed, are a body of statutes, which the convocation may, to a certain extent, alter or amend from time to time. A weekly council is held, called the Hebdomadal Board, consisting of the vice-chancellor, the heads of houses, and the two proctors, who are annually chosen from the colleges and halls in rotation. This board alone has the initiative power in all proceedings in convocation, which is composed of the heads of colleges and halls, or their deputies; the doctors in divinity, medicine, and civil law; professors, and lecturers, with certain limitations; and masters of arts whose names have been kept on the books of some college or hall : these, when assembled together, form the House of Convocation, under the presidency of the chancellor, or his deputy, the vice-chancellor. The proceedings, except by special permission, are all in Latin. A majority of the house, or the chancellor or vice-chancellor alone, or the proctors alone, may negative any proposed decree; but no party in convocation has power to originate a measure, or to propose an alteration or amendment.
As the university authorities deeded it incumbent on them to meet the case, they proposed to deal with it in the only way which appeared fairly open to them, and to treat Mr. Ward not as a theological, but a moral delinquent. They charged him,
s, which tied the universitetains office