A REASONABLE DEFENCE OF THE Seasonable Discourse: SHEWING The Necessity of Maintaining the ESTABLISHED RELIGION In Opposition to POPERY.
OR, A Reply to a Treatise, called, A Full Answer and Confutation of a Scandalous Pamphlet, &c.
LONDON, Printed for H. Brome, at the Gun at the West-end of St. Pauls. 1674.
A REASONABLE DEFENCE OF THE Seasonable Discourse: OR, A Reply to a Treatise called, A full Answer and Confutation of a scandalous Pamphlet, &c.
THe Seasonable Discourse shewing the neces∣sity of maintaining the Established Reli∣gion in opposition to Popery, having not long after its coming abroad into the World, been replyed unto, under the ti∣tle of a full Answer, it was to be hoped that there would be seen at once put together, all that could be said in defence of the Roman Cause: and possibly so it is. How∣ever upon perusal it appears, that the Book made good its Title, by being full only of emptiness and railing; and besides, hath the disadvantage to be encumbred by a particular quarrel, which it seems the Author before had managed in the defence of the Loyalty of his Par∣ty. Therefore at his first setting forth upon his Con∣troversie, he falls into passion, that any thing should be wrote in a matter wherein he happens to have dealt, without a particular regard to him: as if all mankind were bound to read whatever he wrote, or Page 2 that impertinencies were to be adverted to in a Di∣scourse which pretended to be seasonable. What the Authors triumphs are in his Catholick Apology, and his Reply to the Answer of it, I am not here concerned to account for; he will find that done else where: my business shall be to vindicate that Discourse in de∣fence of the Establisht Religion and Laws, which our Au∣thor, according to his great civility and duty, is plea∣sed to complement under the name of a Scandalous Pamphlet.
The first exception he takes, is at its pretence to be seasonable; and his reason is, because his Majesty put out his gracious Indulgence of Popery, and other Sectaries, which also confounded the designs of foreign Achitophels, and united England as one man, without the least murmur in our streets. Had this been wrote before the last Session of Parliament, we might have taken it for one of our Authors natural streins of Rhetorick, which of course pass with him for demonstrations; but after that his Majesty had recalled it, boldly to tell us that none were aggrieved but Pulpit-Rabshekahs, is Lan∣guage becoming them, who not long since attempted to blow up the Parliament and King together, and stand in defiance of Majesty and Law. But after all, it so happens, that ever since that this indulgence is withdrawn; we have as vigorously as before pursued the War against the force as well as machinations and de∣signs of foreign Achitophels, without any murmur but what proceeded from a few scribling Rabshekahs: and therefore I may reasonably hope, that notwithstanding our Au∣thors charge, who will needs make me a Dutchman, I may, without the help of an Act for Naturalization, be an Englishman again. I have (not long since) read in a desperate Book wrote against Henry IV. of France,Page 3 in the time of the Civil War, entituled, De Justâ Rei∣pub. Christianae in reges impios & haereticos authoritate; an odd Paradox attempted to be proved at large in a Chapter of above 40 Pages,* that the Hugonots of France were no longer Frenchmen. By parity of reason it may be our case here, and no Protestant deserves the name of an Englishman: If upon this score it be that I am out-law'd, I must bear the calam•ty as well as I can; being to suffer as in a very good cause, so also in exceedingly good company.
Our Author having thus unfortunately combated the Title of my Book, the next Attaque is against my manner of expressing the excellency of the Faith of the En∣glish Reformed Church, with the erroneousness of the Roman. And this he overthrows by saying, he will be bound to describe the Faith of any Christian Congregation in the World, in the very same Words. We will admit that any Chri∣stian Church may be so described; but how well such a Picture will represent its Pattern, any sober man will easily judge. I am sure the being bound, and offer∣ing to lay Wagers, is a very incompetent decision of Controversies: and indeed no body besides one of our Authors Kidney, would disparage the credit of the 39. Articles, the Catechism and Liturgy of the Church of England, in the affair for which they are brought; the description of its Faith. For be they whatever our Author, or any other perverse man would have them, they are certainly the most au∣thentick evidence that can be given of what our Church professes.
And as to the tricking out of Popery, which he so much dislikes, opposing his crude sentiments concerning real Presence, Infallibility, Purgatory, &c. 'tis sure more rea∣sonable to take the measures of Popery from the di∣ctates Page 4 of the Council of Trent, and other publick deter∣minations referred to by me, then what one or two private men will, to serve a present turn, declare to be their Judgment or Opinion. 'Tis true, Cardinal Bel∣larmine is quoted sometimes by me; and so soon as his authority, and those who go along with him, shall be allowed to have no greater force, then the angry single assertion of the Bishop of Ossory, we will shew him how far we will be parties to the injury of bring∣ing in a rival pretension to that of his holiness, in be∣ing Antichrist. But our Adversary tells us, and we see it plainly in every period he writes, that Religion is not his Calling; and adds, that his pains is saved in wri∣ting about Religion, because I magisterially tell what mine own is, without defending it; and no otherwise disprove his, then by wrong stating it: that is, give an account of both the one and the other, from the authentick wri∣tings of each; therefore he entreats the good Reader never to believe such a detractor, &c. How far his Petitions may be prevalent in lieu of Arguments, I shall not de∣termine, but offer a more just request unto the Reader, that he believe neither of us; but look to matter of Fact, and the reasons alledged by both, and only be∣lieve himself: for under our Authors favour, not∣withstanding his peremptory asseveration; I neither assume to my self, nor desire to have given me, the priviledge of being an Interpreter or a Judge. And so for the present, the Idolatry of the Mass, the sacri∣ledge of robbing the Laity of half the Sacrament, and all the holy Scriptures; the addition of new Articles to the Creed, the praying to Saints, and adoration of Images, with the other abominations of that Church, are upon our Authors Passport, to march off in peace.Page 5
He advances next to the fourth Paragraph of my Discourse, and by his dextrous method of dispatch, confutes the whole Section; which from unquestio∣nable History, and downright matter of Fact, the writings of the most celebrated Authors of the Roman Profession, the Bulls of Popes, and Canons of Coun∣cils admitted by the Church of Rome for universal, demonstrated how destructive Popery is to the inte∣rest of Kings and their Governments, by gravely cal∣ling in for Umpires Solon and Lycurgus; who, he says, would expect that Protestant Princes should after this fair story, abound in all affluence and power, and live longer then Nestor, whilest those of the Catholick Model, are but Tenants at will to the Pope, &c. Here our Author, if there be any sense in what he says, supposes that Pro∣testant Princes cannot suffer any harm from Papists by the one priviledge of their having thrown off the Papal yoke, and that no sickness or accident is to have liberty to kill where his Holiness spares. But by our Authors good leave, Solon and Lycurgus would make no such inferences, should they by a Poetick Fiction, or if you please (for 'tis the same thing) by a Popish miracle, be revived, and enjoyned a Pil∣grimage to these Western parts of Europe, they would have seen a Protestant Prince in France, amidst the so∣lemnities of his marriage, entertained with the mas∣sacre of 30000 of his Friends and Servants, his own Bedchamber not being an Asylum,* the Butchery committed in cold blood in a time of Peace, and be∣gun in the dead of night; against not only the ex∣pectation, but also the solemnest promises of secu∣rity; so that at once were violated all Laws of Na∣tions, Nature, and Religion, all those genial and hospitable Rites which were held sacred by the most Page 6 barbarous of Heathens, by a new prodigy of cruelty sent forth into the World for the propagation and glory of the Roman Catholick Faith; which Act, notwithstanding all its guilt and horrour, became the publick exultation, not only of the Court of the Ca∣tholick King: but the sacred Conclave of his Holi∣ness, and above all, his Holiness himself. They would have seen the self same Prince not only assaul∣ted in the Field by open violence, but attempted in his person, and that more then once by his loyal Ro∣man Catholick Subjects; and when he had quitted his Religion, and hoped for more security; at last de∣stroyed by the desperate hand of one of that Churches Votaries. Or if the before mentioned Solon and Ly∣curgus had gone forward to the British Islands, they would have there beheld a Protestant Queen pursued with greater fury by her Popish Subjects; scarce a year of her long reign past without some new attempt up∣on her life by War,* by Dagger, or by poison. And had they staid for some time with us; they would have seen her Successour designed to death with his Royal Family, his Nobility and Senate, the represen∣tative Power, and real strength of his whole Realm, by a strange compendium of ruine, all of them in one short moment to be destroyed by the perpetually loyal Roman Catholick Saints and Subjects of his Kingdom. After all, though the case be plainly thus, our good man appeals to experience the truest informer of mankind, and to make out an incontrolable proof of the great∣ness and security of Popish Princes, he points out to one nameless King of Spain, and one as nameless King of France, and so proportionably (that is some one of) the Papal Princes ranting like the Grand Seignior, if they please in their own Dominions, &c. When, or how it pleases Page 7 these Monarchs to rant, we are not told; nor what comes of ranting (if his Holiness chance to be con∣cerned in it) at the long run. We will suppose the ranting King of Spain, whom he means, may be Charles the V. for he we know made bold to imprison the old Gentleman; but in the mean time there was very little ranting in the case.* The Emperour sadly com∣plains of the misfortune to his neighbour Princes, and in his own Dominions orders solemn Prayers and Masses to be said every where, for his rescue and de∣livery; and when all was done in good sober earnest was content to knock under the Table, and marry his daughter to his Holinesses Nephew,*Alexander Medi∣ces. But there is one more circumstance which should not be concealed from our Author; that if Charles the V. was able to master the Pope, it was by the strength of an honest German Army,* consisting almost wholly of Protestants. And therefore thus far we see no great exploit done by the Spanish ranting against the Pope. Let us see next whether the French be more lucky Hectors. The sturdiest that I know, was Philip the IV. who when Boniface the VIII. had wrote an insolent Letter to him, directs an answer as fol∣lows:
After this very long and equally insignificant dis∣course, our Author makes a conscience of troubling Solon or Lycurgus, or his Reader, to travel beyond the Seas for ex∣amples of the splendour and greatness of Popish Princes, and refers us to Henry the VIII. who was esteemed over all the World ten times more considerable before, then after his re∣volt from Rome, &c. All the World is a large Word, and soon said by our Author: that comprehensive Theatre for men, will I fear scarce ever be of the same mind with this most improbable Doctor.
In the mean time if there was any decay in that Princes Reputation or Interest toward the end of his Reign, an accident which happens to almost every Monarch in his declining Age, Persons as wise every whit as our Author, have assigned very different cau∣ses of it, from what is by him produced, As 1.* The removal of Wolsey,; 2. The incumbrances which his frequent Marriages and Divorces brought him; And 3. (what it would have become our Author to have thought of,) the Thunderbolt of the Capitoline Jupiter, the Bull of Paul III. followed by a dangerous Rebellion in Lincolnshire, where 20000 men were in Arms against him. This seconded by another of dou∣ble the number in the North; followed by a third, fourth, and fifth: and if he that had so much work cut him out at home, was not at leisure to appear much abroad, we know who is to be thanked for it.
But our Author closes this Section, by saying, that nothing can be so ridiculous, as the foolish pretence of his Ad∣versary, that the persons of our Princes are safer then under Popery; when every body knows that since the Reformation there have been but three Protestant Kings, and that all of Page 10 them are reputed to have come to violent and extraordinary deaths. To gratifie our Author, I will shew him some∣thing more ridiculous by far; even his own dearly be∣loved Argument. For, not to insist on what is inti∣mated before, that his Holiness has not the Keys of Death, though he pretend to those of Heaven, and his own Kitchin, Purgatory; and men may go out of the World, though not sent upon his errand, I will offer him a parallel Story. A person of his Church, very wise, and of great devotion, designs a Visit to our Lady of Loretto, his Friend tells him that the Passa∣ges are beset with Troops of Bandetties, who lately murdered a great Prince in his way thither, soon af∣ter killed another, then a third and a fourth, and so on, and attempted besides very many more, who hardly escaped their hands. No, says our Votary, this cannot be, for I knew three men that purposed to go thither, and two of them were poisoned in their Inn, and a third was murdered by his Servants, before his own dores. The Parallel is so evident, that I am sure, though our Author does not, every body else will comprehend it. I will not question our Author why only the three Protestant Kings are mentioned, and we hear nothing of his Adversary Queen Elizabeth in this account of our late Princes. He takes her it seems for a she Nestor, whom none of the attempts of his Party could rid out of the way. But then as to his observation of the poisoning of Edward VI. and King James, as it is plain, that were it true, 'tis no∣thing to the purpose; so, as luck would have it, 'tis utterly false;* our Historians either not mentioning the suggestion, or at the same time they do so, confu∣ting it. The Fable of the Nosegay and Black Plai∣ster being fitted for such weak persons that have used Page 11 their understandings to submit to Tales and Legends, or such malicious ones, who tell a lie first, and then make it an Argument why they should be Rebels: and we cannot but remember of what particular use the story of the Black Plaister was in the last War. The best on't is, notwithstanding all Romish Designs both in Scotland and in this Nation, taking in the Gun∣powder Treason into the bargain, King James lived to a fair Age, and sober men will not wonder if an Ague at that critical season, without the help of a Plai∣ster, could kill him. Surely in this Argument it would have been exspected from our Author, to have contro∣led my allegations, and shewed that none of those persons, who I say were destroyed or ill handled by Popes, were so dealt with; and that all the Bulls that I produced are forgeries. But this meek Reaso∣ner hath a fairer expedient, and tells us, That he for his part lays not such abominations to the charge of any Reli∣gion, but to the pravity of humane nature; which is also the cause that his Party is so abused by the Ʋnprincipled Incen∣diary, meaning my self, for were I not wicked in the highest degree, I would never have grounded any argument upon the vices and scandals of Popes, when I know their Infallibility is no Article of Faith amongst Papists.
Well-fare a man that writes Controversie without a grain of Logick. He is very kind however in the first place, to let me know, whether I will or not, what the learnedest Doctors of the Church of Rome are far from understanding, that the Popes infallibility is not matter of Faith among them. But to wave this, and behold the quintessence of Demonstration, my Author for his part lays no such abominations to the charge of any Religion, therefore no body else must. Therefore the Papists are abused by the Ʋnprincipled Incendiary,Page 12 who sets down plain matter of Fact. And again, the Popes of Rome are not infallible; therefore it is safe and eligible to submit unto their yoak, though they are never so tyrannous and debauched. We are no more bound to believe the Pope unerrable, then is the Chancellor of France, or any Lieutenant Criminal of Paris that the King can do no wrong; therefore it is still safe to submit to the Papacy, &c.
Once more our Author, and somebody else that would be nameless, Abominate the Popes ill actions, as they admire their good ones; and cannot but think that all Chri∣stians ought to be subject to these Prelates in spirituals: Therefore every one besides, must be as good natured as they, and be enslaved to him in his spiritual and temporal tyrannies. Whoever hath use of a Rope of Sand, let him apply himself to this Artist; for cer∣tainly the World cannot shew his fellow in tacking incoherent things together.
Accordingly he goes on and takes me to task for quoting Bellarmine, Suarez, Turrecremata, Perron, &c. who say, that the Pope may depose Kings, and for inferring thence the danger of that Religion which teacheth these Doctrines. Here a solemn appeal is made, Is not this, Reader, urged like the man of Parts I ever took him for? Well, It seems all Readers knew what opinion the worthy Answerer always had of the Author of the Seasonable Discourse: but I hope before we part, they will not be to seek what opinion they are to have of him, and the Religion he defends. In the next words he says, I will cut my own throat, do what one can to hinder it. This is proved by another appeal, For did not all the Bishops of England that were consulted with, except one, declare to his Majesty, that he might lawfully comply and assent to my Lord of Straffords death, &c. This shall not yet make me say, Page 13 that our Protestant Doctrine teaches Murder; or that acting against conscience for humane advantage is warrantable, though the opinion of so many Prelates is, comparatively more considerable to the English Church, than a thousand to the Catholick. It is truely very much he should not make the inference he talks of, for it would be in all points as good as any he hath hitherto produced: but we must follow him in his own way. Where, first, upon hearing this Story as he tells it, one would think that a Synod of all the Bishops of the three Kingdoms had been convened, when alass the total sum amounted but to five persons in all; and the question was not what our Author falsly sets it: But to use Mr. H. L' Estrange his words (which generally the Writers of K. Charles I. life, exactly accord with.*)
And now let the World judge, if all the Bishops of England, except one, &c. teach Murder to be lawful, or that acting against Conscience for humane advantage was war∣rantable: when of the whole Order there was but one Page 14 single person who can reasonably be imagined to have promoted the Earl of Straffords death. What is sug∣gested by the Author concerning the Archbishop of Armagh, is a great and manifest calumny; as appears from the very particular account of that transaction inserted into the History of Sir Will. Sanderson; and might be farther evidenced by uncontrolable proofs, if there were need of them.
After this unsuccessful attaque upon the Bishops, our good man hath somewhat as little to the purpose to say to the Lawyers: Do we not find that several of our learned Lawyers have affirmed that this or that was a Prero∣gative of the Crown, when other as learned have told us the quite contrary? Yet the Law of the Land is not to be called false, &c. Now from the Premises it is to be conclu∣ded, that I will cut my own throat, do what one can to hinder it. It seems a little difference in Opinion concerning some branch of the Prerogative; is to be put in ba∣lance with dethroning and murdering of Kings: and the judgment of a Lawyer or two, hath the same in∣fluence on the consciences of men, as the resolution of so many probable Doctors in concurrence with his Holiness, who have in every Age filled Europe with confusion and blood.
Not to trouble us more in this matter, our Author at last comes to an issue, and according to his confi∣dent manner, says, In short, Reader, were these Schoolmen, which our Adversary mentions now alive, they would tell us, that every body that pleased, might reject their fansies. Good God, What kind of men were Cardinal Bellarmine, Perron, and the rest! who handle points that concern the lives of Kings, the interest and duty of whole Kingdoms; where if there be an errour, it engages to Rebellion, Treason, Parricide, and other the most Page 15 enormous crimes that can be acted; and yet these are such trifling fansies, that the Authors are not concer∣ned whether they be admitted or rejected; though they have declared them also to be de fide. Where∣as 'tis added that Mariana's Book was burnt, we can tell also where 'twas not; nay where it and all of that stamp, even Sanctorellus himself,* who to prove the Popes power in deposing Kings, urges the Text of the Apostle in the very contradictory to what he said, that it was to edification and also to destruction. If this be news to our Author, he may have it more at large in St. Amours Journal, and also see the opinion not of a few Doctors,* but the whole Senate of Inqui∣sitors, that the denial of the execution of the Popes Jurisdiction in the temporal Territories of Princes, without they give leave, is Heresie.
As to his shrinking these high flown Writers to 10 or 12, when all the World knows that Bellarmine rec∣kons up 72. and others rise to much higher numbers; if the issue be put to number, so that what side most Writers are of, shall pass for the Doctrine of the Roman Church, we will not decline the issue, notwithstand∣ing the Musters of Father Carron, and the Author of the Controversial Letters.
After all these misadventures, our Author hath the confidence to make another appeal to his Reader, and tell him, that he sees how little my allegations either from the practises of Popes, or writings of a few Doctors made against the Papists, make against them; since the Author and some other disown those opinions, &c. The Reader does abun∣dantly see what hath been said on both sides, and will be sure never to take inferences from his hands, who hath so ill luck at them. But I pray if the claim and prescription of 600 years, I mean, ever since the days Page 16 of Hildebrand, and the Writings of the most celebrated Doctors in all that time signifie nothing, to evidence the danger of Popery; because forsooth this does not speak the Doctrine of the Church; what is replied to the determinations of Oecumenical Councils where his Holiness presided? I hope if the Infallibility be not vested in the Doctors, nor the Pope, nor Councils apart; yet if any thing be declared in a General Council with the concurrence of the Pope, this will pass for the Doctrine of the Church; unless perchance the new Scheme in behalf of the Nurses and Mothers have utterly supplanted the Authority of the Fathers of the Church. In proof hereof the Seasonable Discourse produces the Council of Lateran, of Lyons, and of Con∣stance, all which are allowed for General. But to this our prudent Answerer says not one single word, and betakes himself to his old Topick of the loyalty of his Party; concerning which since he will have it so, let him expect his answer from the rejoinder of the Antiapology.
Our Author having run himself out of breath in his zeal to his loyal Party, comes next to tell me, that I need not have troubled my self with the ungrateful Topick of the Popes Excommunicating and Deposing Kings, seeing Popish Princes fear as little the loss of their Dominions as the Protestants; and that I (sensless as I am) know that ever since the Reformation, the Pope hath given away but two King∣doms, England and France, which thanks be to God belong still to the owners, whilest those that call themselves Prote∣stants have deposed the absolute Princes of Scotland, Den∣mark, Sweden, &c. In the first place I do not think our Author hath been admitted to the Cabinet Coun∣cil of either Popish or Protestant Princes, to know what they do, or do not fear. And, Secondly, 'Tis Page 17 an inference very worthy our Author to conclude, such a mischief is not feared, therefore there is no danger, when every body, besides our Author, knows that no ruine is so fatall as that which is contemned and overlooked. But the following inference is more remarkable, the Pope hath done all that in him lies, to di∣vest the Kings of France and England of their Dominions, yet by Gods blessing they hold them still; therefore there is no danger from the Pope. Further yet, Some that call themselves Protestants have been guilty of Rebellions; there∣fore the Church of England, who both in her Princi∣ples and Practices is confessedly free from any such disorders, is equally guilty of them. And lastly, what suits exactly with the rest, Matthew Paris and other Ca∣tholicks, complain of the intolerable tyrannies of the Pope; therefore 'tis a fault in us to complain of them: or, which follows as well, those tyrannies are very fit for us to call upon our selves, when by Gods blessing we are freed from them.
Now at last we have attended our Author to the end of his second head. After some scorn of my Poli∣ticks, he addresses to them, forgetting to say one sylla∣ble in defence of putting whole Nations under inter∣dict; that they who happen to displease his Holiness, should have no publick Offices of Religion for seve∣ral years together; this our Full Answerer slides by in silence, and arrives, as he sayes, to his Politicks. And first he destroys my profound Observation (Pag. 18.) that says Popery will be destructive to the Laws of the Land. This he laughs out of countenance, by saying that the Lawyers are very good Catholiks already, for they declare that the King, and by parity of reason, the Pope, &c. can do no wrong; that their Common Law is oral Tradition, that an unknown tongue is fit and laudable; that Clients must pay Page 18 blind obedience. But since a Rowland for an Oliver is the word; I must beg leave to add one maxime of Law more, The King never dies, and therefore never any Papist murdered any King, or ought to be punished for attempting what was in it self an impossibility. But our merriment is upon the sudden turned into fury; Who can have patience, says our meek Reasoner, with this piece of formality, that durst urge such a foolish insignificant argument, that Popery will prejudice our Law and Lawyers, when as not only they, but all that can read, know what lear∣ned rich and eminent persons, both for power and dignity, we have had formerly of this Profession: the like at present be∣ing seen in France, Spain, Italy, and other places, &c. It is a hard matter to deal with a man who will bear one down, and perswade him against the most evident truths in the World. There is scarce an ordinary School-boy, who does not know that most of the Ju∣dicatories of England were, till the Reformation, com∣monly in the hands of Priests and Canonists; and that when ever Popery comes in, it will probably be so again. However it is most manifest that the greatest part of the Grist will be carried to another Mill; first the Ecclesiastical Courts at home, and then by appeals to Rome abroad. I can with very little recollection at any time reckon up about twenty Earls, Viscounts, and Barons, which since the time of King Henry VIII. threw off the Pope, (excluding the interval of Q. Ma∣ries reign) were raised to the Peerage of England from the Law; and I can reckon up hundreds, who have gained estates thereby, which might qualifie them for the like dignity. But I have not in all History met with one instance of that strange secret which our Author tells us is known to every one that can read, of rich and eminent persons to be set in balance with the Page 19 other. But he proves his Paradox by the greatness of the French, Spanish, and Italian Lawyers; a point which I have no reason at all to grant him, but only because if it were true, it proves nothing at all to the purpose: for quietness sake it shall be, for once, as he pleases. But the Argument runs thus; The Civil and Canon Lawyers are great men abroad under Pope∣ry, therefore the Common Lawyers of England will be so too. The Gentlemen of the Long Robe, who upon the double obligation of their Country and Pro∣fession, are the assertors of the Laws of England, are not so foolish as to desert their interest and duty upon those lamentable pretences that are here offered. And therefore I shall no longer insist upon this head, but proceed to the following.
Where my Adversary undertakes to confute, that is, derides and rails against my second wise Observation, (p. 20.) that Popery will resume all the Lands alienated since the Reformation from the Church. Whether my obser∣vations be to be called wise or foolish, is, I hope, to be determined by somewhat besides our Authors plea∣sure; who appears, and no body can help it, secure and unconcerned at the mention of resumption of Church Lands. We will not suppose him thus unconcerned because he hath not much to lose, and therefore im∣pute it to his confidence of obtaining such advan∣tages, in case of a change, as may abundantly recom∣pence him. We know very well that such considera∣tions prevailed with some men about the time of his Majesties restauration, and may as well in any other revolution. The Pope, he tells us, is not such a child, as to give a thing and take a thing; whether the old Gen∣tleman may not, at least in this particular, be twice a child, we are not secure by our Authors assertion; Page 20 especially since another sort of persons besides Ideots and Infants, meddle with things which belong to them. And were not our Author furnished with a convenient talent of incogitancy, he could not but know how in all Ages Popes have done so: usurped not only on the Estates of private men, and Domi∣nions of Princes, (and, not to go for instances beyond those which were before his eyes in the Seasonable Di∣scourse, where he finds his Majesties Dominions dispo∣sed of several times over) but on the acts of preceding Popes; the doing which is justified by as good Canon Law as is to be found in the Decretals. I instance in that which occurs next, where his Holiness breaking through the Decree of a Council, and his Predecessors to boot,* declares peremptorily,
But our Author tells us, such a resumption must be ei∣ther by Act of Parliament, or by the Pope: an Act of Par∣liament cannot be had, and the Pope will not do it: the latter, the Popes good will, we have seen how far it is to be depended on; the former part our Author fortifies with this reason, that it will be against the interest of all the members, to pass such an Act. It falls out unfortu∣nately for our Author to write in an Age where revo∣lutions have furnished matter of Fact, which is a pe∣stilent Argument of the possibility of an event; only those that are armed with infallibility having con∣fidence enough to deny, that what hath been, may be. Having therefore an eye to what hath passed hereto∣fore, let us examine this grand security our Author gives the Lay Abbots from the interest of the mem∣bers of Parliament not to consent to a restitution to Holy Church.
First of all, what certainty have we that the Mem∣bers of Parliament, upon such a revolution, shall be all or most chosen out of Lay Abbots? did we find the late Purchasers, or that sort of men, carry so many elections in the choice of this present Parliament, which was as free and uncontroled as any ever was, or will be? or did we rather find that the humour of the People went quite against that sort of men? Yet farther, What if upon such a revolution as must be supposed if Popery should once prevail in this King∣dom, none should be eligible but under certain quali∣fications? The late Times furnished us with one of fearing God, and hating covetousness; which inter∣preted by a Roman Casuist, might easily be brought to Page 22 signifie such as had not, or would not retain Church Lands. If those terms be not expressive enough, new ones would not be long in finding, to take the place of the Oaths of Allegiance and Supremacy at the Parliament dore, which upon such a change must avoid.
What if one should desire the Author to consider, that many ways may be found out to prevail with the most eminent and leading men? Besides that, the zeal in delivering up Church Lands will so recom∣mend them to those that shall be then in power (and who those may be, God knows) that it will be like the merit of an old Cavalier at the Kings restauration, qualifying them for all the good things of the Land.
What if one should farther desire the Author to call to mind, that the long Parliament it self, at the last when they saw the humour of the Nation run toward it, were plainly desirous, and contriving to bring in the King? (I mean when the secluded Members were amongst them) though there was not one man there who had not forfeited his neck by the Law of the Land, (and that is as sensible an interest as Abbey Lands) and yet the Kings good words, the humour of the Nation leading toward it, and the hope of merit∣ing by being of the forwardest, made many men not only suffer it, but by opposing the Faction then in possession, run some hazards to promote the Kings re∣stauration. He that shall peruse our Records and Acts of Parliament, will find that every Faction, when prevailing, hath had no great difficulty to get Laws made for their purpose.
Those Lay Abbots, who will prevent Acts for resu∣ming Church Lands, must in their several capacities use their endeavour to prevent the growth of Popery Page 23 in the Nation. If once that over-spread this King∣dom, it is beyond folly to rely on the Acts of Parlia∣ments under which they now claim.
Our Author, for our farther security, tells us the Pope gave consent to alienate Lands at Venice for the War against the Turk, and for an end he supposes not unlike it the setling a distracted Kingdom, dispenced with it here also. The Lay Abbots are obliged to him for putting the alienation of Church Lands here upon an equal foot with those at Venice. It is the first time I have ever heard any of that Religion give so great an approba∣tion of it: and yet even in this kindness of his, there is a latent sting; he doth not mean that the first alie∣nation had the Popes allowance, he speaks only of what the Pope consented to in Q. Maries days, as he calls it, (i. e.) reclaiming a distracted, i. e. in their sense, an heretical Kingdom. When the Seasonable Discourse doubts whether, that not having the effect, for which it was designed, it will not be interpreted a condition not accepted of, and therefore no longer obligatory. Our Author answers only by his censure, which he is pleased to bestow on it, as a transcendent confidence to alledge as an instance that there remains no obligation from the Kings offer at the Isle of Wight, to lease Church Lands for 99 years, since not accepted, as certainly no offer obli∣ges unless accepted. He is pleased to say with some derision, that none but the Author of the Seasonable Di∣scourse fansies the Pope cannot be tied to an agreement as well as other Governours. The Seasonable Discourse had told him, that the Pope acting for the Church, would in a favourable conjuncture, find himself obliged to rescind whatever had passed prejudicial to it; the impossibi∣lity whereof, I do not find him demonstrate: and I have shewed him as good Canon Law as is in the Page 24 Decretals, that the Pope can be loose from this Act of his Predecessors, had it been more formal then it was, whenever he pleased. But my good man brings up his reserve of the Treaty of Munster, upon which so many Papist and Protestant Princes, Noblemen, and Gentlemen, have either Bishopricks, Abbeys, or the like, confirmed to them by the Pope. But if after all this there be no such mat∣ter,* if the Pope have been so far from confirming these grants, as to protest against them by his Legate Cardinal Cheigi in the Treaty; and afterwards in a particular Bull damned them to the Pit of Hell: what shall we say to the honesty and credit of our Author, with his impertinent Broadside from the Maltese Gal∣lies? But (not to insist on our Authors customary frailty of being mistaken) as to our present business, suppose the Popes equally obliged with other Gover∣nors, I do not find the Author hath answered any thing to those words, in Pag. 21. of Season. Disc.
But farther yet, Supposing the Pope equally tied with other Governours, may he not plead that the Page 26 Law doth relieve the King against his own Act, when he hath been deceived in his grant, obtained by undue suggestions. 'Tis not to be doubted, but if Popery should prevail, his Holiness would expect the same equity of our Law; and I believe the Lay Abbots do not desire to put their Estates to that issue before a Jesuited Jury, whether the Pope were deceived in his Concessions in Q. Maries days. The points in Law which may rise from the penning the Acts of Suppres∣sion of Religious Houses, intimated in the Seasonable Disc. our Author, according to his way of full an∣swering, fairly passes over.
My next misdemeanour, for which I am to have due correction, is my quotation of a passage in the Traitte Politique, which after a great deal of insipid contu∣mely that was intended for wit, and fills up the room of sense, is not at all pretended to be misrecited by me; only I am first very ridiculous to think the Interest of the Regulars so considerable a thing. Well, since it must be so, and I am never to be believed, let us take the opinion of Campanella in the case, as good a Politi∣tian I dare say as our Author is likely to be in haste.
But secondly, As to the absurd Parallels of the Hu∣gonots and the Mogul, out of which our Chymist in reasoning draws a plain Conclusion, that I have ruined the Church, and am a Traitor, 'tis such a piece of childish folly, that in meer respect to the Reader, I will not expose him for it. Let any honest man that hath not travelled himself out of his Religion and Wits, and love of his Country, seriously read the Section re∣ferred to by me; and freely judge whether it be that unconcerning piece of Nonsense 'tis represented.
Our Author after this calls me to account for my third Observation which stirs up my zeal against Popery, The preservation of Trade, with the value of Lands and Rents. It cannot be denied but the Author hath given good evidence of his skill, when he comes to examine the arguments of inconvenience to Trade, Rents, and Riches of the Nation, supposed to follow the admis∣sion of Popery: but the dexterity lies in knowing what he could not answer, and so diverting the Di∣scourse to another subject: For example, It was ob∣jected that the encouragement Popery gave to idle persons by Monasteries, &c. would withdraw many hands from Work and Trade. The Author to prove this false (as if he were playing at Cross purposes) tells us, some have affirmed Deanaries, Prebendaries, &c. did so also. Doth that make the objection any thing less true? none can deny, but if all the hands in En∣gland were imployed in working, more work might be done: And if for other good reasons it is found fit to set apart some for other uses, Judges, States-men, Divines, &c. doth it therefore follow it is good to have a refuge for all the lazie People in a Nation to be idle in, without being any way useful, much less necessary to the publick? But if the Reader find not Page 28 that argument convincing, he hath plenty of others as good, so the number shall supply for the weight; for to prove that Monasteries do not withdraw hands from Work and Trade, he tells you, many Protestants have and do lament the want of them: Ergo. That Mr. Stow saith it was a pitiful thing to hear the lamentation in the Country for them, when they were put down: Ergo. But who do you think lamented them? Probably, those who by their suppression were forced to work and take pains for their living, which before they did not.
The Author of the Seasonable Discourse had unfortu∣nately overshot himself, and said, That he thought the Celibate of Priests, and the admitting Nuns and Religious Orders would be an hindrance to the in∣crease in People: the Answerer convinceth him of his mistake by a Proverb, (I think of his own making) viz. That nothing furnishes the Gallows and the Bawdy-houses like Parsons children: Ergo, the Celibate, &c. doth not hinder the increase in People. His inferences are so lovely, that I can by no means pass them by. Cer∣tainly no body but our Author in an Age when several of the Nobility and prime Ministers of State, are and have been Sons of Clergy men: when the Sons of so many Earls and Barons, not to mention the Gentry, are actually in Holy Orders, and more in the Univer∣sities are Candidates of them: and on the other side, when persons of the vilest extraction, in the Church of Rome are notoriously known to have risen to be Cardinals and Popes: I say, no body besides our Au∣thor, would have objected the mean birth of our Cler∣gy as a reproach unto us. I am sure no Christian, who is the Votary and Disciple of the blessed Jesus, who for our sakes made himself of no reputation, and put Page 29 on the form of a Servant, and chose Fishermen and Tent-makers for his Apostles, would with despight and scorn (had the thing been true, as it is in the ge∣neral very false) objected an humble Fortune or mean Birth to those who serve at his Altar, and succeed to his Apostles in their ministration in holy things. Had I my Authors eloquence in Exclamations, I might here cry out on the Ʋnprincipled man. But to pass this, however here is an excellent effect of the marriage of the Clergy, which I did not before think of; they provide matter for the Exercise of Justice (which would else be quite out of use) and give sufficient sup∣ply to the Bawdy Howses, without laying a necessity on those of any other extraction to be debauched. How should one do to convince this Author that there were Whores and Thieves when Priests did not mar∣ry? or that there may be now of other extraction then Ministry. I shall not pretend to the priviledge of making Proverbs: but I am sure it is become the vulgar observation, that the Whores and the Thieves almost of course seek an Asylum at Rome, whose first beginnings were owed to that sort of Inhabitants. If we should search Records of old time, to see what Thieves had been condemned or executed in those days, our Author has an answer for that too; for nei∣ther the Judges nor the Juries supposed to condemn them, were infallible; as he is pleased to say even of the Pope himself, when he finds an argument cannot be otherwise avoided; and the Reader will easily be∣lieve our Author thinks the Pope as infallible as a Free-holder at the least. Despairing therefore of convincing him by any arguments of mine, in this difficult point, I leave him to his own meditation re∣solving to comply with what he is pleased to say to Page 30 his Reader upon this very subject, viz. that there is no need of staying longer upon it. And yet lest he should think himself neglected, I am willing to offer a word or two to his observation of Popish Countries being as populous as the Reformed; in which, if circumstan∣ces be rightly considered, the Reader will find cause to differ from him. For he will scarce find a Popish Country of that extent so populous as Holland is, or lately was. If the Author think our want of Peo∣ple may be alledged on his side, it is to be considered that we have been for a long time wonderfully drained of our People by our Plantations, besides the Wars of England, Scotland, and Ireland, and the re-planting of Ireland, which the Author ought the less to forget, because we are obliged to those of his Church for the occasion of it.
As to his argument of taking away all days of rest, it will not follow, that because I allow it reasonable to pay Tithes, or Easter Offerings to the Clergy, there∣fore I should give them half or all my Estate; nor the other way, that because I will not give them all my Estate, therefore I should not pay Tithes. The mo∣deration of many things makes them eligible, which the excess would render perfectly intolerable.
The next of our Authors dexterities is his eluding the argument used in the Seasonable Discourse, that Fa∣sting days would be more numerous, and therefore less flesh eaten; and thence it was inferred, Cattle abounding would be cheaper, and therefore Farmers would not pay the same rent for Land, as if there were not so many Fasting days. Now our Authors full answer is, Bishop Andrews in his Lenten Sermons commends Fasting, and so do many other Protestant Di∣vines. Therefore though there should be more Page 31 Fasting days, there would be as much Flesh eaten, &c.
It is unfortunate our Author did not light upon a right way of arguing at first; for if he had, it is pro∣bable he would have kept it up, as well as he hath done his cross purposes; in which being once enga∣ged, he would not be so wavering as to depart from it. I dare not undertake for a Gentleman who thinks he follows an Infallible guide; otherwise I should have been tempted to give the Reader hopes, that when any body should write against the lawfulness of Monasteries, or of Priests continuing unmarried, of Holydays, or of Fasting, our Author would then give us his arguments of their convenience or inconveni∣ence as to Trade, Rent, or increase of People: which he hath been pleased wholly to omit now, when that part only was in question. If Spain, which hath Plan∣tations, be compared with us, we are much more po∣pulous, as we are also then Italy which hath none at all; 'Tis true France exceeds us, not having had that drain of Plantations, till of late; and that sparingly in respect of us; and possibly somewhat of the popu∣lousness of France may be owing to the Reformation, those of that Religion, furnishing no Nuns, Friers, or Orders of either Sex obliged to celibate. I have heard the French King hath had some consideration of sup∣pressing some of the Religious Houses, and restraining the admission of persons into them upon this very ac∣count; whether it is become any thing more then a project, I cannot say.
The next thing is, the objection from Holy-days, as an hindrance to Trade and Work; but because I have the ill luck never to be believed by our Author, I will set down the very words of a devout Catholick,*J. Ca∣ramuel, and let the World judge whether I am that Page 32 impudent affirmer I am represented.
Our Author goes on to my fourth Observation, that Popery will bring to private persons a vast expence in Masses, Dirges, &c. I expected that after the charge of so large a sum, our Author should have made use of his Talent of Confidence, and stoutly denied the allega∣tion; or at least, as he uses to do in a case of exigence, Page 34 put on the Buffoon and fairly laught it out. But he very honestly confesses the whole matter, and goes about to justifie it, because Magna Charta gives every body leave to do what he will with his own. Our Author hath the luck to surprize his Reader in every thing he says. There is not a Grand Jury man in England but knows that there are several scores of Statutes that restrain men from doing what they will with their own, and yet they were never till now charged with being a breach of Magna Charta; I would fain know (to wave other instances) if the Statute of Mortmain, which he pre∣sently mentions, do not induce such a restraint; and if that be a breach of Magna Charta. 'Tis a known rule in Law, that the Publick is concerned to take care that private men should well imploy their E∣states; and all wise Nations have been concerned to appoint Guardians and Tutors to those whose weak∣ness or prodigality made them ill managers for the Publick and themselves. And sure 'tis but an ill ac∣count of Popery, that it will put us under a perpetual nonage; and unless our Authors new maxim help, expose us to be begged for Fools and Idiots. His next argument to prove that Popery does not drain the purses of its Votaries, is that he believes the Papists of England and elsewhere, have as much money in their purses at the years end, as their Protestant neighbours of the same rank and estate. I desire this may be remembred at the next complaint of persecution. They are indeed shrewdly hurt by the tyrannous Hereticks, who crack in this manner, and offer to drop Ginneys with their Neighbours. But Sir, if Popery prevail, the burthen∣some offices, from which you are now exempted, will fall upon you as well as others; nor must you think to make your Priest your Caterer or Bailiff any lon∣ger, Page 35 or put him off with a pitiful salary, raised out of Symony, which in this case his Holiness hath made lawful for you. The World, believe it, will be chan∣ged; his Holiness is now to stroke you, and shake his Provender; but if he gets up again upon his old pa∣tient Beast, which carried him and all the load he could heap on, for so many Ages; we must not doubt, and you with us, of having the same, if not worse usage then formerly we met.
When I had made out from unquestionable Records the intolerable oppressions and incredible sums of mo∣ney, which in times of Popery were drained, and even screwed from us, I closed the Paragraph by de∣siring to be informed
He proceeds to my fifth Observation, p. 29. which nettles me when I think on't, 'tis Auricular Confession. And here he again wonders at the unprincipled man, and tells us, that Scripture commands it by these words, confess your sins one to another. There be some who would reply, that these words enjoyn as much the Priest to confess his sins to the People, as the People to the Priest: But I will not discourage a young beginner from quoting the Scriptures, and therefore will by no means take the advantage of that exception: but will flatly tell him, that neither this Text, nor any other in the Bible, nor Canon of any ancient Council, Writing of Fathers, or practice of the Primitive Church gives Page 36 the least countenance to Auricular Confession. For proof of this, because my credit is low with him, I shall desire my Author at his best leisure to look upon what is said in the known Jansenist Tract, De la fre∣quent Communion, proving through the first Ages, that performance of the Penance did precede the Absolu∣tion: which Pecavius••plying to, can only answer, that those instances were all in publick penitences: but is able to produce himself not one instance, whe∣ther of Confession or Penance where 'twas otherwise; which sufficiently shews that this present Engine of the Romanists, which gives Absolution before the per∣formance of Penance, is a meer abuse and novelty in the Church. His excuse for the sacred seal of Con∣fession in behalf of Princes, that by this means Priests will disswade and dehort all Subjects from traiterous machina∣tions, which otherwise would be concealed from them, is such a piece of confidence, as we could hardly meet elsewhere, but from our Author. For was it not as clear as noon-day light, that the whole design of the Gunpowder Treason was made known in Confession, and that Absolution was given upon it, and the Sacra∣ment also in pursuance thereof: and for the keeping secret the whole matter, in respect of the Priest as well as the Conspirators?* and was not this almost the only Plea which Father Garnet made at his ar∣raignment, to justifie himself for not disclosing the Conspiracy? when 'twas withal notorious that his re∣solution of the case did not dehort or disswade, but animate that hellish enterprise? The close of our Au∣thors Apology is, that Auricular Confession may be abused and prophaned, as is the reading of the Scriptures. To which I answer, that the Parallel is not very mannerly or ap∣posite; but yet it yields a very good argument ad ho∣minem,Page 37 The Papists, because the Scriptures may be abused, forbid the reading of them; therefore since, as 'tis notorious, Auricular Confession is more abused, let that be forbid likewise.
Our Author proceeds to my short and dull glances a∣gainst Indulgences and Pardons; I never intended to convince by strains of wit or railing, that is our Au∣thors priviledge, the weapon which I use is plain and down-right truth, which he above all mankind that ever I yet met, hath reason to be angry with. His first charge is my quoting Corn. Agrippa; He may himself it seems, with a good grace quote Plays, and the Transproser, and Dr. Wild the Poet, and Mr. Pen the Quaker, and transcribe whole Pages at a time; but the very naming Cornelius Agrippa is a mortal sin in me. Let him however read what Naudaeus hath said in his behalf; and then see whether he be to be put in the same form with Rablais. But I am farther accused of being pleasantly, if not maliciously ignorant concerning the ancient rates mentioned by me of Fornication: which impo∣sition the Reader must know, was only a pecuniary Mulct upon some transgressions, as we have here about swearing, &c. God be thanked there is a Law against Swearing, 'twere much to be wished that there were some against Lying: since you will out-face me in every thing that I say, be it never so evident. I pray what think you of Claud. Espencaeus?* did he know what these your ancient godly impositions were? or will you have some deference to his opinion in the case? his words are these.
He goes on to the last Observation, which makes me his mor∣tal enemy, p. 32. Self-preservation, to avoid Fire and Faggot, Massacres, Racks and Gibbets, the known methods by which the Romanists support their Cause, and propagate their Faith, &c. all which, he says, are at large answered in the Reply, where 'tis proved that either the allegations are false, or are no more to the Catholick Religion, than Judas his Treason is to Christia∣nity. I have given him my word, that I will not meddle with his Reply, else I should tell him that 'tis something strange that Rebellions acted in pursuance of the most probable Doctors resolution of his Holiness his Bulls, and decisions of Councils, should be so wide from ha∣ving to do with the Catholick Religion, unless happily what passes under that name be not Christianity. But he goes on and rails at the poor Albingenses and Piemon∣teses for being open Rebels. Good Sir remember a little, Were the Crusades imployed against them for their Rebellion, or their Heresie, that is, dissenting from the Roman Doctrines? But if this do not do, I am to be confuted with the Quakers complaints against our perse∣cuting of them. We are fallen into a good World when Papists write for Toleration, and make Apologies for Quakers. In fine, Our Author makes a grave re∣marque, that there is great difference between the Popish and Protestant Party, who as soon as we were in power, perse∣cuted them their elder brother. I would very fain keep my word, and since I have promised it, say nothing to the Page 40 Topick of our Authors Reply, the loyalty of his Party. But since he forces me to it, I must beg leave to re∣mind him, that there was no great Persecution in Edw. VI. time, nor for the first 11. years of Q. Eliz. nay to the 23. of her Reign, and for that time I hope the Pro∣testants were in power;* yet the Papists had no cause to say that they were persecuted: and 'tis confest by their own Party, that their multiplied Treasons did extort all the severe Laws that were made against them. And whereas our Author wishes that the Papists in England had half so much favour as the Piedmonteses have; 'tis such an extremity of stupid ingratitude, as will certainly by no means recommend to the favour and in∣dulgence which is begged for in the next period. If the English Papists, who live on their Estates in all free∣dom, affluence, and plenty, and as our Author acknow∣ledges it, have as much money in their purses as their neigh∣bors, do yet complain of persecution, and wish to be in the state of the Piedmonteses, who live in that desolate poverty, that nothing but the luxury of cruelty could tempt men to take the pains to destroy them; we must not hope they will be ever satisfied with all the kindness we can shew them. But to satisfie all doubts, my Adversary, as if he came Legate à latere to reconcile the Nation to the Church of Rome, gives us unquestio∣nable security, even his own fair word, which we have seen to be frail enough; telling us that he declares upon the faith of a Christian, that he abominates for his own part, the very thought of bloud and persecution; and that he verily believes the Catholicks of England would not touch the least hair of any Protestants head (were they in power) for their Conscience. I will be so charitable as to admit our Au∣thor may abominate or believe what he protests he does; but we cannot but know that he has a faculty Page 41 of changing his belief; and he cannot tell what an al∣teration a new face of things might make in his mind. In the mean time I am sure we have no reason to hope that all the Catholicks of England, however transfor∣med of late from what they always were before, as our Author would perswade us they are, are a distinct species of Christians from those elsewhere; particu∣larly of Ireland, for whom our Undertaker is so cauti∣ous as not to engage. So that we must resolve that St. Patricks benediction is transferred to us, and the most poisonous Jesuited Viper of Ireland, that eats his way through his Mothers bowels, (for I say our Au∣thor has nothing to plead for them) so soon as set upon the English Shore, loses all his venoms, and is as harm∣less as Innocence it self.
We might have ended here, but that our Author is to shew one piece more of my matchless impudence, which is, that Del Rio informs us that the Powder Plot was with the privi∣ty and direction of the Pope; when as this Author published his Book in Feb. 1598. (for then the License for printing it, bears date) which is seven years before that treasonable machination; nor hath he a word there of England in the place: and where∣as I say that Clement VIII. gave order that no Priest should discover any thing that came to his knowledge by Confession, for the benefit of the secular Government, 'tis absolutely false; for his Holiness his Precept was only to the Superiors of the Re∣gulars (as the said Author expresly tells us) that they should diligently beware of making any thing known, discovered by Confession, to advantage their own exteriour Government; that is, if by Confession a Superiour came to know the natural imperfections of a Subject, as his lying, idleness, or prodigali∣ty, &c. he should not therefore put him out of his Office, &c. The Gentleman has now done, but let us see where is this matchless impudence that I am charged with? Is Page 42 it because I say the Gunpowder Treason was with the Privity and direction of the Pope; surely that cannot be it, for that hath been asserted by others long before me;* particularly by Bishop Andrews in his Book against Bellarm. who says that his Holiness had ordered three
But after all, my matchless impudence may perchance lie in the application of his Holiness's Bull to the se∣cular Government, which the Author says is absolute∣ly false. Be my Errour or my Impudence what it can be, I am sure it is not matchless, for I say nothing but upon the credit of Del Rio, who quotes this Bull of Cle∣ment V•II. and answers this very Objection, which as if it were fire new▪ our Author is here pleased to urge with so much confidence and assuming.
The Author having thus happily demonstrated my matchless impudence in this quotation of Del Rio, he comes next to shew my want of integrity, in the mention of the accusation of the Bishop of Angelopolis against the Jesuits: which I know has been answered to the full in the late Letters against Mr. Stillingfleets Idolatry. My Author is wonderful kind in making me know ever and anon things that I am a most perfect stranger to. I know indeed, that a confi∣dent asseverer has the face to say that the Bishop of Angelopolis Letter was forged at Port Royal by the Janse∣nists; but he should have told us farther, that the Bulls of Pope Innocent X. and the long decisions in the cause, which we have at large in Cherubin's Bullarium,* were forged also. A man a little better versed in Books and things than our Author, would have understood that this groundless cavil was many years since sugge∣sted by F. Annat in France, and soon after, beyond re∣ply or contradiction, refuted by the Curez of Paris.* But every thing is new and demonstrative to one, who knows no better than our Author. His quarrel with Dr. Du Moulin for quoting Mr. Whites Book of Govern∣ment, when not only that, but all the other works of that Ca∣tholick Leviathan, are condemned by the Pope, is owed to the same original, the not understanding what is tal∣ked of; for every body knows that Mr. White might have wrote what Treason he had pleased against Princes, and have fared no worse than his neighbours, if his Tabulae Suffragiales,* and some other of his Writings, had not been so unfortunate as to touch his Holiness his Copy-hold in the point of Infallibility, of his being Judge of Cantroversies of Faith and Pur∣gatory, Page 46 the very best part of the Papal Revenue: and thereby rendred heretical all that he had wrote or could write hereafter.
I am come now to the Postscript, which being no∣thing but a heavy repetition of what has been said be∣fore, requires very little answer. Therefore I shall only say, that if the members of the Church of England must not refute or oppose treasonable principles and practi∣ses, without falling under the imputation of Incendia∣ries, Persecutors, having ill natured seditious designs and the Churches being conscious of its weakness; 'tis to be doubted there are really such designs on foot, as cannot well consist with having those doctrines and practises expo∣sed to open view.
I have now done, and endeavoured to answer every thing but the contumely of my Author. Had I a mind to have requited his favour, and been his Godfather, as he was pleased to be mine, he must needs know I could easily enough, out of some of our English Plays, have found a name which would have fitted him as well, and stuck as close as that he has bestowed on me; but when all is done, what is a Nick-name, the crying Sir Pol, the urining at St. Mark, or the Tortoise; to the merit of the cause between the Protestant and the Pa∣pist? I cannot think our Religion and Laws, our Liber∣ties and Lives, are so trivial a Prize, as to be carried by a Mastery in fooling. When our Author shall think fit to write with the sobriety of one who treats of Re∣ligion, the civility of a Gentleman, and the veracity of a man of honour; he may look for a respectful and modest reply; otherwise from me he shall have no more trouble, for I am not at leisure to throw dirt, nor will I be a Buffoon for Company.