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his academic institution of some young gentlemen, with a design, perhaps, of putting in practice the model of education lately published by himself; yet this course was of no long continuance,
famous republican, John Lilburn, of turbulent memory. He it was, too, it is probable, who is called 'Quartermini, the brewer's clerk,' in the pamphlet published in December, 1641, entitled New Preachers new.'” (History of Eng Bap. Vol. i. p. 164.)
Before parting with Dr. Featley, who was a member of "the Assembly of Divines at Westminster,” the author hopes he shall be pardoned for giving one extract from this most vituperating pamphlet. It is from “the Epistle to the Reader:”—“This fire, (baptism ) which in the reigns of Queen Elizabeth, and King James, and our gracious sovereign, [Charles I.] till now was covered in England under the ashes; or if it broke out at any time, by the care of the ecclesiastical and civil magistrates, was soon put out. But of late, since the unhappy distractions which our sins have brought upon us, the temporal sword being otherwise employed, and the spiritual fast locked up in the scabbard, this sect, among others, hath so far presumed upon the patience of the state, that it hath held weekly conventicles, re-baptized hundreds of men and women together, in the twilight, in rivulets and some arms of the Thames, and elsewhere, dipping them over head and ears. It hath printed divers pamphlets in defence of their heresy; yea, and challenged some of our preachers to disputation. Now, although my bent hath been always hitherto against the most dangerous enemies of our church and state, the Jesuits, to extinguish such balls of wild-fire, as they have cast into the bosom of our[Presbyterian] church; yet seeing this strange fire kindled in the neighbouring parishes, and many Nadabs and Abihus offering it on God's
for he was to have been, in 1647, made adjutantgeneral to Sir WILLIAM WALLER, but that the new modelling of the army soon following, and Sir William turning cat-in-pan, this design was frustrated.” The same historian
“ A little after FAIRFAX and CROMWELL had marched through the city with the whole army, to quell the insurrection of Brown and Massy, [who were] now grown discontented likewise with the parliament, [in December, 1648,] our hero changed his garret for one more accommodated to his circumstances, where, in the midst of all the noise and confusion of arms, he led a quiet and private life, wholly delighted with the muses, and prosecuting his indefatigable search after useful and solid
altar, I thought it my duty to cast upon it the water of Siloam to extinguish it.” No one could have possibly guessed that the irritated Doctor's pamphlet was water, much less pure water, had he not himself called it so! In my copy, one of the sixth edition, there is an engraved frontispiece, in which he is represented as dead, and laid out in his winding-sheet, and his epitaph dated 1645, with plenty of Greek and Latin! Six editions of this quarto, of 258 pages sold in six years!! So great and universal was the prejudice against the 'the Sect of Baptists' then, as long since, and still, every where spoken against! But as the devil is represented in the picture of the Reformers, puffing at a lighted candle, and saying, “ We cannot blow it out!” so Dr. Daniel Featley, with his“ many waters," could not quench “ this fire."
knowledge.” The following lines refer to this period.
WHEN THE ASSAULT WAS INTENDED TO THE CITY.
“ Captain, or Colonel, or Knight in arms,
Whose chance on these defenceless doors may seize,
Guard them, and him within protect from harms.
That call fame on such gentle acts as these,
Whatever clime the sun's bright circle warms.
The great Emathian conqueror bid spare
The house of Pindarus, when temple and tower
Of sad Electra's poet had the power
We are now arrived at the period when MilTON was called upon to fill the honourable office of Latin secretary to the council of state, to which he had been called soon after the death of the king. * This public mark of respect from the republican government, for a man who had hitherto been the object of affected scorn, a mere schoolmaster in the estimation, first of the PRELATES, and then of the NEW PRIESTS WRIT LARGE! must have been
* He now removed to a lodging in the house of one Thompson, at Charing Cross; and afterwards to apartments provided for him in Scotland Yard: here his wife gave birth to a son, who died 16th of March, 1650.
very galling, and exceedingly mortifying to their narrow and contracted souls. That he who, through their bigotry, had been cited to appear before the House of Lords, to give an account of his principles, which even admitting them in any respect to have been erroneous, were not a matter for the cognizance of the civil magistrate; and respecting whom the redoubtable Dr. D. Featly had, in 1644, entreated “ The most noble Lords,” &c. &c. that he might be cut off as a pestilent Anabaptist ; should now have become a member of, or at least a constant attendant on, the chief council of the nation, and who, of course, must have had an influence to restrain the holy brotherhood from punishing those who, as regarded working the work of the Lord,” were better ministers than themselves! One should conclude, they could not have helped thinking that they were the degraded Haman, and that Milton was the exalted Mordecai."
The following poem was probably produced by the attempt of the Presbyterians to get his book on Divorce burnt by the common hangman, and himself punished as an heretic in religion.
"ON THE NEW FORCERS OF CONSCIENCE UNDER THE LONG
“ Because you have thrown off your prelate lord,
From them whose sin ye envied, not abhorrd;
-That so the parliament
-and succour our just fears,
* Adam Stuart, a divine of the church of Scotland, and the author of several polemical tracts; some portions of which commenced with A. S. only prefixed.
+ Samuel Rotherford, or Rutherford, one of the chief commissioners of the church of Scotland, and professor of divinity in the church of St. Andrew. He published a great variety of Calvinistic tracts.
Thomas Edwards, minister, a pamphleteering opponent of Milton : whose plan of independency he assailed with shallow invectives.
§ Perhaps Henderson, or Baillie, or Galaspie, Scotch divines: the former of whom appears as a loving friend,” in Rutherford's Redivivus; and the latter was one of the ecclesiastical commissioners at Westminster.