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brow, and cover him with a gaudy and flowing unseasonable and undue heat must warp the inmantle.

strument by which alone their speculations can Our Saviour does not command us to pray, be becomingly and rightly made. If God is senalthough his example, for especial purposes, sible to displeasure, which is a modification of appears to countenance it. His nature, and the pain, at the faults or vices of his creatures, he nature of his mission, might require this inter- must suffer at once a myriad times more of it than

He says only, “when ye pray,” &c., or, any of them, and he must endure the same sufferin other words, “ if you will pray let your prayer ings a myriad times longer. be,” &c. For on more than one occasion, desirous Magliabechi. This hurts our common faith. as he was of interfering but little with established Middleton. Pass over what may offend your usages, he condemned the prayers of the Jews. faith, common or private; mind only (which I Magliabechi. They were too long.

am sure you will do) what may disturb the clearMiddleton. They were not longer (as far as Iness of your conscience and impede the activity know) than those of other nations. In short, if of your benevolence. Let us never say openly we believe the essence of God to be immutable, what may make a good man unhappy or unquiet, we must believe his will to be so. It is insanity unless it be to warn him against what we know to imagine that his determination can be altered will make him more so; for instance, if you please, by our whims or wishes; therefore it is not only a false friend; or, if you would rather, a teacher more wise but also more reverent to suppress who, while he pretends to be looking over the them, both in action and in speech. Supposing lesson, first slips his hand into his scholar's him altered or moved by us, we suppose him sub- pocket, then ties him adroitly to his chair by the ject to our own condition. If he pardons, he coat-skirt, then, running off with his book, tells corrects his first judgment; he owns himself to him to cry out if he dares, promises at last to give have been wrong and hasty; than which suppo- him ten better, and, if he should be hungry and sition what impiety can be greater ?

thirsty, bids him never to mind it, for he will eat Magliabechi. Do you question everything that his dinner for him and drink his wine, and say a is not in the form of syllogism, or enthymema, Latin grace. or problem with corollary and solution ?

Magliabechi. Ha! now you are stretching out Middleton. I never said that what is indemon- your objections against our church, disregarding strable must therefore be untrue : but whatever what Catholics and Protestants hold in common; is indemonstrable may be questioned, and, if im- our prayers, for instance. I have always found portant, should be. We are not to tremble at the that, when we have carried off the mysteries in shaking of weak minds: Reason does not make triumph, you fall foul upon our miracles and our them so: she, like Virtue, is debilitated by indul- saints. gences, and sickened to death by the blasts of heat Middleton. That is idle. and cold blown alternately from your church. Magliabechi. I am rejoiced to hear you confess

Magliabechi. Do you conceive God then to be it: you then really have some veneration for those indifferent to our virtues or vices, our obstinacy holy men whom the church hath appointed for or repentence ?

our intercessors ? Middleton. I would not enter into such ques- Middleton. Here we come again into the open tions : and indeed I have always been slow to road, with visible objects before us. I venerate deliver my more serious opinions in conversation, all holy men : but, doubting whether my own feeling how inadequately any great subject must prayers to God would alter his mind concerning be discussed within such limits, and how pre- me, I should yet more betray my deficiency of sumptuous it would appear, in one like me, to act confidence in his promises, if I trusted a person as if I had collected all that could be said, or even who is no relative to him rather than his only son; what could be said best, on the occasion. Neither that is, if I trusted the weaker in preference to the to run against nor to avoid your interrogatory : stronger; the worse in preference to the better ; there are probably those who believe that, in the him who at his birth and after his birth had sins, expansion and improvement of our minds here to him who was born and lived and died with none. after, they will be so sensitive to the good or evil Beside, I have no proof whatever that God requires we have done on earth, as to be rewarded or such counsellors and mediators. Must we believe punished in the most just proportion, without any that some men are lying in the grave while others impulse given to, or suffered by, the First Cause are conversing with him, and busied in turning and sole Disposer of things and of events. How him from indignation to mercy? We are informed rational may be this creed, I leave, with the other, by Holy Writ, that all alike are to be awakened by to speculative men; wishing them to recollect that sound of trumpet. What then would become of

* Middleton had the misfortune to disbelieve the efficacy me if I doubted it? And must I not doubt it if I of prayer, and adduces such arguments in support of bis suppose that some are already at the right hand opinion as a reasoner so powerful in his perversity would of God? do. Magliabechi is unable to seize the horns of his adver.

Magliabechi. His divine will may order it. We sary and bring him at once to the ground: yet the good know he promised the repentant thief on the ness of his cause supplies him with generous and high feeling, and his appeal to the heart of Middleton is more

cross that he should sup with him that night in forcible than Middleton's reasoning.


Middleton. He was very merciful to that thief, The representative system is good only on this | and has been to many since, who never were upon side of adoration.

the cross at all, but who picked pockets under it. Magliabechi. Prayer, at all times serviccable, What he promised, it would be impiety to doubt may apparently on some occasions be misapplied. of his performing; but I never heard of his pro- Father Onesimo Sozzifante, on his return from mise of supper or Paradise to deacon or doctor, to England, presented to me a singular illustration canon or bishop; much less do I believe that they of my remark. He had resided some years in can introduce a friend or dependent. If you London, as chaplain to the Sardinian envoy: in would be consistent and go upon certainty, you the first floor of his lodginghouse dwelt Mr. Harwould pray to the thief; for beyond all contro- bottle, a young clergyman, learned, of elegant versy he hath secured his place.

manners, yet fond of fox-hunting. InconsistenMagliabechi. The church has never canonized cies like these are found nowhere but in your counhim.

try: in others, those who have enough for one Middleton. What! have saints no sanctity until side of the character, have not enough for the the church hath given it? Do they mount into opposite : you in general are sufficiently wellheaven from the Vatican? God then does not stored to squander much of your intellectual proappoint his own counsellors! They are nominated perty, to neglect much, and to retain much. like the cardinals, and by the same voice !

Mutual civilities had passed between the two ecMagliabechi. After due examination.

clesiastics, and Father Onesimo had received from Middleton. There indeed lies the difference. I Mr. Harbottle many invitations to dinner. After should have more confidence in God's chosen thief. the first, he had declined them, deeming the songs

Magliabechi. You would rather trust a robber and disputations in a slight degree indecorous. than bend before the image of a saint?

The party at this was clerical : and although he Middleton. At least I know that the one was represented it as more turbulent in its conclusion accepted ; I am ignorant that the other was. than ours are, and although there were many warm

Magliabechi. This indeed is even worse than disputants, chiefly on jockies or leaders in Par. what you most abominate, idolatry.

liament, he assured me he was much edified and Middleton. I am not one of those who consider pleased, when, at the removal of the dishes, each idolatry as the most heinous of sins. In the com- drank devoutly to his old friend. “I thought of mission of idolatry for a lifetime, there is less you,” said he, “my dear Magliabechi, for every wickedness than in one malignant action or one one had then before his eyes the complacent guide injurious and blighting word.

of his youth. Mine shed a few tears; at which my Magliabechi. O Mr. Middleton ! Idolatry is friends glanced one upon another and smiled; for denounced for God's especial vengeance : yet in from an Englishman not even the crucifix can the blindness of your hearts you Protestants accuse extort a tear.” us of this tremendous sin. A thousand times Onesimo was at breakfast with Mr. Harbottle, have you been told that we do not venerate what when an Italian ran breathless into the room, represents, but what is represented.

kissed the father's hand, and begged him to come Middleton. You tell us that you do not worship instantly and attend a dying man.

“ We will go images, but that you worship in them what they together,” said Mr. Harbottle. Following their express : be it so : the Pagans did the same, informant, they passed through several lanes and neither better nor worse. What will you answer alleys, and at last mounted the stairs of a garret, to the accusation of worshipping a living man? in which was lying a youth, stabbed the night beAdoration is offered undisguisedly and openly to fore by a Livornese, about one of those women priests and monks, however profligate and infa- who excite the most quarrels and deserve the mous their lives may have been and be. Every fewest. “Leave me for a moment,” said Father Pope is adored by the Holy College on his eleva- Sozzifante, “I must hear his confession." tion.*

Hardly had he spoken, when out came all Magliabechi. We suppose him to be the repre-whom kindness or piety or curiosity had collected, sentative of Jesus Christ.

and “He is in Paradise!" was the exclamation. Middleton. His legate is also his representative, Mr. Harbottle then entered, and was surprised to and a valet de chambre the legate's. We may obey hear the worthy confessor ask of the dead man one man in place of another, but not adore him. whether he forgave his enemy, and answer in

* The Emperor of Austria had a difference with the another tone, Yes, father, from my heart I parHoly Ghost on the election of Cardinal Della Somaglia to don him." the Popedom. The Holy Ghost had inspired the Holy On returning, he remarked that it appeared

College to prefer him : the Emperor of Austria disapproved strange to him. “Sir,” answered Onesimo, “ the 1 of this inspiration, and set it aside by his veto.

knew that there was enough virtue in Italy already, and Catholic church enjoins forgiveness of injuries.” declared that he wanted no more learning. In proof “All churches enjoin the same,” replied Mr. Harof the adoration of his present Holiness, the left hand elect bottle. “He was unable to speak for himself,” said of the Holy Ghost, I shall transcribe the very words of the the father, “and therefore I answered for him official gazette. “Si recò alla Basilica Vaticana per ricevere colà dall'

like a christian." altare della Tribuna l'adorazione ed ubbedienza del Sacro

Mr. Harbottle, as became him, was silent. On Collegio coi solenni riti completi."

their return homeward they passed by a place


which, if I remember, is called New-gate, a gate stance was diminishing: still no offers had tempted above which, it appears, criminals are hanged. him, although many had been made, to sell the At that very hour the cord was round the neck of picture. At last he refused to alienate it other. a wretch who was repeating the Lord's prayer : wise than in favour of a worthy priest, and only the first words they heard were, “ Give us this day as the price of supplications to the Virgin. “Who our daily bread.” The father looked at his com- knows how many it may require ?" said the holy panion with awe, spreading his fingers on his man ; " and it is difficult to make a prayer which sleeve, and pressing it until he turned his face the Virgin has not heard before; perhaps fifty toward him. They both pushed on; but, such | will hardly do. Now fifty crowns would be little was the crowd, they could not pass the suppliant for such protection.” The invalid, who heard before he had uttered, “And lead us not into the conversation, wept aloud. “ Take it, take temptation.” The good father stepped before Mr. it,” said the husband, and wept too, lifting it Harbottle, and, lifting his hands above his ears, from the nail, and kissing for the last time the would have said something ; but his companion glass that covered it. The priest made a genucried smartly, “I have seals to my watch, Signor flexion, and did the same. His supplications preSozzifante, and there is never a fellow hanged but vailed ; the wife recovered. The priest, hearing he makes twenty fit for it : pray walk on.

that the picture was very valuable, although the Fairly out of the crowd, “ Poor sinful soul !" master was yet uncertain, and that in Genoa there said the father, “ere this time thou art in purga- was no artist who could clean it, waited for that tory! Thy daily bread! alas, thou hast eaten the operation until he went to Milan. Here it was last mouthful! Thy temptation ! thou wilt find ascertained to be the work of Leonardo, and a but few temptations there, I warrant thee, my dealer gave him four thousand crowns for it. He son! Even these divine words, Mr. Harbottle, returned in high glee at what had happened, and may come a little out of season, you perceive." communicated it to all his acquaintance. The

Mr. Harbottle went home dissatisfied. In about recovered woman, on hearing it, fell sick again an hour a friend of his from Oxford called on immediately, and died. Wishing to forget the him : as the weather was warm, the door standing sacrifice of her picture, she had prayed no more ajar, Sozzifante heard him repeat the history of to Saint Giacomo; and the Virgin, we may pretheir adventure, and add : " I will be damned if sume, on that powerful saint's intercession, had in my firm persuasion the fellow is not a Jesuit : abandoned her. I never should have thought it: he humbugged Awful fact! Mr. Middleton. Now mark another me about the dead man, and perhaps got another perhaps more so. I could overwhelm you with a hanged to quiz me. Would you believe it? He crowd of witnesses. has been three good years in getting up this Middleton. My dear sir, I do perceive you could. farce; the first I have ever caught him, and the Magliabechi. The saints in general are more vinlast he shall ever catch me at.”

dictive than our Lady; of whose forbearance, not Father Onesimo related to me these occur- unaccompanied at last by chastisement, I will rences, without a word of reproach or an accent of relate to you a memorable example. I have indeed ill-humour. “ The English is a strong language,” no positive proof that he of whom I am about to said he placidly, “and the people, the least de- speak had neglected his prayers to the Virgin ; ceivers in the world, are naturally the most indig- but, from what he certainly did, it is by no means nant at a suspicion of deceit. Mr. Harbottle, who, uncharitable to suppose it. He moreover, by this I dare to say, is ripened ere this time into an action, as you will remark, was the cause why exemplary and holy man, was then rather fitter others were constrained to omit the salutary act for society than for the church. Do you know," of supplication as they went along. said he in my ear, although we were alone, “ I Middleton. I am in suspense. have seen him pay his laundress and there was Magliabechi. Contiguous to my own villa there nothing between them) five shillings for one week is one belonging to Signor Anco-Marzio Natale only! à sum that serves any cardinal the whole del Poggio. At the corner of the road was inserted winter-quarter : in April and May indeed, from in the garden-wall an image of the blessed Virgin, one thing or other, linen wants washing oftener." | with the bambino in her arms. Anco-Marzio had

Mr. Middleton, I have proved my candour, I been heard to call it, somewhat hastily, an ugly trust, and my freedom from superstition : but he one, and to declare that he would take it down. who seeks will find : and perhaps he who in obsti- The threat however, for several years, was not nacy closeth his eyes long together, will open carried into execution: at last it was accomplished. them just at the moment when he shall meet Behold the consequence! Robbers climbed over what he avoided. I will inform you of some facts the wall (would you believe it?) in the very place I know, proving the efficacy of prayer to saints. whence the effigy had been removed, and upon

Giacomo Pastrani of Genoa, a citizen not abun- the very night too of its removal : and Ancodant in the gifts of fortune, had however in his Marzio lost not only the whole crop of his lemons, possession two most valuable and extremely rare none of which had ever been stolen in former things, a virtuous wife and a picture of his patron years, but also a pair of knee-buckles, which his Saint Giacomo by Leonardo. The wife had long maid servant had taken that occasion of polishing been ill : her malady was expensive : their sub- with quick lime, and of which he deeply lamented the loss, not because a crown could scarcely have it. What is light we may call so; and why not replaced them, but because they were his father's, what is dark ? and he had bequeathed them by his last will and Magliabechi. Would it fail to excite a discontestament to a very dear old friend.

tent in England, if your Parliament should order No reply, no reasoning, can affect this. I know Christmas to be celebrated in April ? Yet Joseph the fact: I visited the spot the next morning: I Scaliger, the most learned man that ever existed, saw the broken wall : I saw the leaves of the and among the least likely to be led astray by lemon-trees under the vases, without a lemon the theory, has proved to the satisfaction of many not size of a filbert on the plants. Who delayed the unlearned, that the nativity of our Lord happened mad project so long? who permitted it at last ? in that month. who punished it ? and for what end? Never Middleton. As the matter is indifferent both in afterward did Anco-Marzio pass an effigy of the fact and consequences, I would let it stand. No blessed Virgin, but he kissed it again and again direct or indirect gain, no unworthy end of any with due reverence, although it were wet with kind, can be obtained by its continuance : it whitewash or paint. Every day did he renew the renders men neither the more immoral nor the flowers before the one whose tabernacle he had more dastardly: it keeps them neither the more violated, placing them where he could bend his ignorant of their duties nor the more subservient head over them in humble adoration as he re- to any kind of usurpation. turned at night from his business in the city. Magliabechi. There may be inconveniences in It has indeed been suspected that he once omitted an opposite direction. Pride and arrogance are this duty; certain it is, that he once was negligent not the more amiable for the coarseness of their in it. He acknowledged to me that, coming home garb. It is better to wrap up religion in a wafer, later than usual, and desirous of turning the and swallow it quietly and contentedly, than to corner and reaching the villa as soon as might extract from it all its bitterness, make wry faces be, it being dusk, he was inclined to execute his over it, and quarrel with those who decline the duty too perfunctoriously, and encountered, in- delicacy and doubt the utility of the preparation. stead of the flowers, a bunch of butchers-broom. Our religion, like the vast edifices in which we None grows thereabout. I do not insist on this : celebrate it, seems dark when first entered from but the lemons, Mr. Middleton ! the thieves, Mr. without. The vision accommodates itself gradually Middleton ! the breach in the garden-wall, made to the place; and we are soon persuaded that we for an irreligious purpose, and serving to punish see just as much as we should see. irreligion. Well may you ponder. These things Middleton. Be it so : but why admit things for can not occur among you Englishmen.

which we have no authority, and which we can Middleton. Excuse me, I pray you, my dear sir! not prove? I have left unsaid a great deal of Knowing the people of this country, my wonder what I might have said. Not being addicted to was (for indeed I did wonder) that the lemons ridicule, nor capable of sustaining a comic part, had never been stolen until that year.

I never have spoken a word about the bread of the Magliabechi. They never were, I do assure you angels. from my own knowledge, for the last thirty. Magliabechi. God forbid you should !

Middleton. The greater of the two miracles lies Middleton. Even your own church, I imagine, here.

will hardly insist that the bread taken by ChrisMagliabechi. Of the two miracles ? Astonish- tians here on earth, in the sacrament of the ment and sudden terror make us oftentimes see eucharist, is the ordinary or extraordinary susthings doubly : for my part, I declare upon my tinence of angels. For whatever our faith may conscience I can see but one.

be, whatever supports it may require, theirs is Middleton. Nor I neither; to speak ingenu- perfect and has received its fruit. oualy.

Magliabechi. This is specious ; so are many of Magliabechi. Ha ! ha! I comprehend you, and your thoughts; but as I cannot prove the fact, perhaps have to blame my deficiency of judgment neither can you prove the contrary; and we both in going a single step aside from the main subject perhaps shall act wisely in considering it as a of prayer. Now then for it: arm yourself with phrase of devotion. infidelity: chew the base metal, as boys do while Middleton. I should think so, if the latitude of they are whipped, lest they cry out.

such phrases had not offered too many fields of Middleton. I am confident, from your present battle. But let me hear the miracle with which good-humour, that the castigation you meditate you threatened me. to inflict on me will be lenient. He is not com- Magliabechi. My dear friend, I am now about mended who casts new opinions for men, but he to lay before you a fact universally known in our who chimes in with old.

city, and which evinces at once the efficacy of Magliabochi. The wisest of us, Mr. Middleton, prayer, even where it was irrational, and the concan not separate the true from the untrue in sequence of neglecting it afterward. everything.

Angiolina Cecci on the day before her nuptials Middleton. It required the hand of God himself, took the sacrament most devoutly, and implored as we are informed, to divide the light from the of our Florentine saint, Maria Bagnesi, to whose darkness : we can not do it, but we can profit by family she was related, her intervention for three blessings : that she might have one child only ; ceived her error, but, instead of repairing it, that the cataliere seroiente, agreed on equally by abandoned herself to anguish and lamentation. her father and her husband, might be faithful to Her caraliere serriente, finding her bald, meagte, her; and lastly that, having beautiful hair, it and eyesore, renewed his addresses to the mother. never might turn grey. Now mark me. Assured The husband, with two daughters to provide for, of success to her suit by a smile on the counte- the only two ever reared out of the many ennance of the saint, she neglected her prayers trusted to the same peasants, counted over again and diminished her alms thenceforward. The and again the dowry, shook his head, sighed money-box, which is shaken during the cele- piteously, and, hanging on the image of Maria bration of mass to recompense the priest for the Bagnesi a silver heart of five ounces, which, knowperformance of that holy ceremony, was shaken ing it to have been stolen, he bought at a cheap aloud before her day after day, and never drew a rate of a Jew on Ponte Vecchio, calculated that crazia from her pocket. She turned away her the least of impending evils was, to purchase an face from it, even when the collection was made additional bed just large enough for one. to defray the arrears for the beatification of Bag- You ponder, Mr. Middleton : you appear astonesi. Nire months after her marriage she was nished at these visitations : you know my sin. delivered of a female infant. I am afraid she cerity: you fully credit me : I can not doubt a mo expressed some discontent at the dispensations of ment of your conviction : I perceive it marked Providence; for within an hour afterward she strongly on your countenance. brought forth another of the same sex. She Middleton. Indeed, M. Magliabechi, I now disbecame furious, intractable, desperate; sent the cover the validity of prayer to saints, and the babes without seeing them, into the country, as danger of neglecting them : recommend me in indeed our ladies usually do; and spake slight-yours to Saint Maria Bagnesi.* ingly and maliciously of Saint Maria Bagnesi. The consequence was a puerperal fever, which con

* Saints in general make a great quantity of oil disaptinued several weeks, and was removed at great good deal of it come suddenly out of nothing; as will be

pear ; but Saint Maria Bagnesi on the contrary made a expense to her family, in masses, wax-candles, evident to whoever reads Breve Ragguaglio della produ. and processions. Pictures of the Virgin, wherever zione d'oglio sequita o scoperta il di 30 Maggio 1816, nel they were found by experience to be of more venerabile monastero degli Angele e S. Maria Maddalena peculiar and more speedy efficacy, were hired at

de' Pazzi, ad intercessione della B. M. Bartolommea

Bagnesi, Virg. Fior. del Terz. Ordine di S. Domenico. heavy charges from the convents : the cordeliers, Verificata autenticamente per sentenza della Curia Arcito punish her pride and obstinacy, would not carry vescovite Fiorentina del di 10 Decembre 1804. The quantity theirs to the house for less than forty scudi. was not stinted to a flask or two, but filled up to the brim She recovered, admitted her friends to converse

an earthen vessel containing six or seven barrels, which, by with her, raised herself upon her pillow, and

order of the Queen of Etruria, sister of Ferdinand VII. of

Spain, was granted in small quantities to the faithful. The accepted some consolation. At last it was agreed minutest portion of it rubbed on the body, as the book by her physicians that she might dress herself attests, with the simple invocation of Saint Maria Bagnesi, and eat brains and liver. Probably she was un produced its own miracle. The courtiers were deeply grateful for a benefit so signal and unexpected; religious orders ; to others it only gave (as oil of old) a

impressed with this awful verity; so were some in the since no sooner did her cameriera comb her hair, cheerful countenance ; for Saint Maria Bagnesi did not than off it came by the handful. She then per- | belong to them.


Milton. Friend Andrew, I am glad to hear that disgust in touching those of other times than of you amuse yourself in these bad times by the our own; and in a drama the most ancient would composition of a comedy, and that you have have the most novelty. I know that all the several plans in readiness for others. Now let me periods and all the nations of the world united, advise you to copy the better part of what the have less variety of character than we find in this Greeks and Romans called the old, and to intro- one city: yet, as you write to amuse yourself and duce songs and music, which, suitable as they are a few learned friends, I am persuaded you would to Tragedy, are more so to the sister Muse. Fur- gladly walk out of it for once, and sit down to thermore, I could desire to see a piece modelled delineate a Momus or a Satyr, with at least as in every part on the Athenian scheme, with the much complacency as a vulgar fopling or a party. names and characters and manners of times past. coloured buffoon. For surely you would not add to the immorality O, Andrew! albeit our learning raiseth up of the age, by representing anything of the present against us many enemies among the low, and mode upon the theatre. Although we are more more among the powerful, yet doth it invest us abundant in follies, which rather than vices are with grand and glorious privileges, and confer on the groundwork of Comedy, we experience less us a largeness of beatitude. We enter our studies

* Milton bad given his opinion in full on government and enjoy a society which we alone can bring and religion, and on many kinds of poetry; what he may together: we raise no jealousy by conversing with be supposed to have thought on comedy was wanting. one in preference to another: we give no offence

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