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known through a very faulty Latin translation. And yet this letter, from the end of the second down to the beginning of the fourth century, had an extensive authority, since many Christians assigned to it and to the Pastor of Hermas a place side by side with the New Testament. This was the very reason why these two writings were both thus bound up with the Sinaitic Bible, the transcription of which is to be referred to the first half of the fourth century, and about the time of the first Christian Emperor."
Then follows the narrative of his efforts to obtain permission to carry the precious MS. to Cairo, that he might have it accurately transcribed; his chase after the Prior of the convent to Cairo; his obtaining the Prior's consent; his despatching a Bedouin Arab “ on his camel” to Sinai for the MS.; his laborious task of deciphering and copying the 110,000 lines in a climate where in March and April the thermometer is never below 77 deg. Fahren. heit in the shade. Then came his pertinent suggestion that the monks should present the MS. to the Emperor of Russia, " as the natural protector of the Greek orthodox faith.” Though the proposal was favourably received, a fresh difficulty occurred. The new archbishop, though formally elected during Easter week, was not yet consecrated, nor was his nomination even accepted by the Turkish government. The Patriarch of Jerusalem protested against the election, thus provoking a new delay. Dr. Tischendorf went to Jaffa, and turned up some new treasures in the libraries of Jerusalem, Saint Saba, Beyrout, Ladikia, Smyrna and Patmos. Then followed new diplomacy and fresh complications. Energy conquered. Not only did Tischendorf secure the loan of the MS. for the purpose he desired, he also obtained some valuable concessions of rights for the convent to which he owed so much. On the 19th of November he presented the precious MS. to their Imperial Majesties of Russia in the Winter Palace at Tsarkoe-Selo, and with it his rich collection of old Greek, Syriac, Coptic, Arabic and other MSS. He refused pressing and 'splendid invitations to settle in Russia ; and at Leipsic he completed, after three years, a magnificent fac simile copy of the Codex in four folio volumes. The Emperor of Russia, Alexander II., had furnished all the funds, and the MS. publicly appeared in 1862, on the celebration of the Millenary Jubilee of the Russian Empire. Copies of it were distributed throughout the Christian world, and it stands as at once the most important and the most easily accessible of all the great codices at present known to exist. Cambridge and Oxford offered to the indefatigable discoverer, transcriber and editor, their highest academical honours. The Pope, in an autograph letter, sent Dr. Tischendorf his congratulations and admiration ; and this splendid work opened to Dr. Tischendorf the doors of the Vatican, previously kept so jealously guarded, and procured for him access to the second oldest copy of the Scriptures as yet known to be in existence, the Vatican Codex.
If these ancient codices do nothing more, they furnish a remarkable and most gratifying proof of the substantial accuracy of the received text; thus showing how wonderfully the Divine Providence has watched over the Divine Word, to keep it substantially pure among men. A sufficiently complete list of all the more important variations of the text exhibited in both the Sinaitic and Vatican codices was compiled for this magazine, and was printed in the volume of the Intellectual Repository for 1869, to which we may refer readers who are anxious for information on the point. Our present object is to familiarise the minds of our readers with the character of a noble and arduous worker in this important department of biblical study, so that they may know what all believers in the Scriptures owe to Constantine Tischendorf.
New CHURCH ALMANAC AND YEAR-BOOK FOR 1875. London: James
Speirs. On the plan of an ordinary Almanac, this commends itself to New Church people by introducing information which they are supposed to desiderate. It tells them when the first New Church place of worship was opened, and when the corner-stone of the last-erected one was laid ; especially it gives the dates of the birth, the ordination, and, when the event requires it, the death of many of the New Church ministers, an American brother being so honoured occasionally when there is an empty space for him, on the principle, we suppose, that an Almanac, like Nature, abhors a vacuum. Besides these recorded events, every other page consists of extracts from Swedenborg or from some New Church author; and at the end there are a Directory of New Church places of Worship, a List of Ministers and Licentiates, the Creed of the New Church, Swedenborg's rules of life, and New Church Institutions. The list of ministers and licentiates seems to be copied from the Conference Minutes for 1873, and therefore contains some inaccuracies. For instance, among the licentiates we find Mr. Bates, although in the Almanac itself his ordination is entered under the date October 26, 1873. Respecting the Almanac itself, we think it might be made more interesting if the pages devoted to extracts were employed to chronicle events and facts that mark human progress, especially in religious truth and goodness. Benjamin Franklin, in his celebrated Poor Richard's Almanac, it is true, dealt out much practical wisdom to his countrymen, but his wise sayings were gleaned from the ripened harvests of all nations and ages. As the New Church Almanac is yet in its infancy, we have ventured to suggest what we think would contribute to its improvement ; remarking, however, that as it is readers will find it useful, and well worth the small sum charged for it.
THE LIFE AND CORRESPONDENCE OF THE REV. JOHN CLOWES, M.A.
Edited by THEODORE COMPTON. London : Longmans, Green and Co.
1874. WHATEVER enlarges our knowledge of Mr. Clowes must increase our admiration of his character. This Life records much that we already know, but it contains a considerable amount of new matter, chiefly in the form of letters of Mr. Clowes himself. These are extremely valuable, being in the best sense autobiographical, since they at once give a hi tory of his mind, and supply us with lessons of that heavenly wisdom with which his mind was so richly stored. But although the Life contains a good deal that has previously appeared, yet the notices of Mr. Clowes' life have been so fragmentary and are of a date so remote, that to the present generation most of the present volume will be new. Besides, it is by far the completest account of that estimable man that we possess. The materials for it, with the exception of a number of his letters, have been some considerable time in existence, having been collected or supplied by the late Mr. Harison, who enjoyed Mr. Clowes' friendship for the last seven years of his life, a period sufficiently long to enable him to amass a large amount of information. He does not however appear to have had that end in view ; and not till after the death of his revered friend did he begin to write down his own observations and draw upon the recollection of others for what could be known respecting one of whom we should like to have known more. His life was not indeed of that kind which supplies many of those incidents that can be woven into a popular biography. Some of the earlier incidents of his life are sufficiently striking, but the even tenor of his after life, especially of his advanced years, presents a picture of such tranquil beauty, that in gazing upon it desire is lost in enjoyment, unless it be the desire to be more like him in the innocence of wisdom, which give his character and writings so just a claim to be called angelic.
As the man is in the child, or the child is father to the man, the childhood of Clowes seems to have been, by the judicious training of intelligent and religious parents, well prepared for producing a noble manhood. Although he had early religious impressions, happily he was not a precocious pietist. He engaged in the sports and enjoyments suitable to his age, and he speaks of himself during his college life as having been a gay young man, who thought there would be no heaven for him without skating and running. It was not till he had been three years a Fellow of Trinity College, Cambridge, that religion first struck its roots deep into his heart, where it ever afterwards continued to grow and strengthen, and which produced such rich and abundant fruits of goodness and wisdom. Reviewing his past career after an illness which had brought hinı to the brink of the grave, he could find in its acquisitions and honours no spiritual comfort from the past, no spiritual hope for the future. In this frame of mind the word Eternity which accidentally caught his eye “called all his former sins to remembrance, passed sentence upon them, rent the veil of separation between him and the eternal world, and seemed to place him in the immediate presence and under the scrutinizing inspection of the Father of the Universe.” From that moment he was a changed, and became a new man. The rectorship of St. John's, Manchester, which he had previously refused as beneath his expectations, was now again offered him. Regarding it as a providential opening, he gladly accepted the proffered office; and although, contrary to his expectation, he lived to a very advanced age, yet so satisfied was he with his position, so delighted was he with its uses, that the offer of a bishoprick, which at a future period was made to him, had not the power to draw him away from it. This devotion to his office, and great love for his people which it implied, combined with his saintly life and apostolic teaching, could not fail to produce in his congregation a corresponding love for and devotion towards him. How sincere and deep their love and veneration for him were is well attested by the beautiful marble that still adorns the walls of St. John's, and which they placed there to commemorate the completion of the fiftieth year of his ministry ; and another beside it which records and lainents his death. But the great turning point in his life, in which we are more immediately interested, was his reception of the doctrines of the New Church, which no doubt greatly contributed, though to many of them unconsciously, to endear him to the people of St. John's, for the principles of the New Jerusalem did very much to beautify his character and to make his teaching rich and edifying. Most of our readers are acquainted with the incident which led to his acceptance of the truth. As the word Eternity had suddenly awakened in his heart a deep interest in life and immortality, the words Divinum Humanum, which he saw but for a moment, as suddenly opened his understanding to the reception of the light by which the heart may be surely directed and guided to the attainment of its object, the realization of its desires. How greatly he rejoiced in that light, how clearly he saw it, how much he did by his life and labours to diffuse it, are known to all in the New Church. His translations of the Writings, his vindications of the Doctrines, his sermons and works that elucidate and enforce them, embody an amount of labour, and convey so many precious lessons, that if we have not like the congregation of St. John's raised a monument of marble to his memory, it is to be hoped we have deeply engraven his honoured name on our hearts. For to him we are indebted under Providence for giving to His infant church so bright and beautiful an Exemplar of its principles, and for bequeathing to its members so much of the means of enabling and inviting them to become good and happy themselves, and the instruments of blessing to their fellow-creatures.
Having said thus much respecting the subject of the Biography, we will give the reader something of his own. Among the many excellent letters from his pen those which speak comfort to the afflicted are peculiarly valuable, and while they relate to special cases read a necessary and useful lesson to all the suffering children of men. We select one
To Mrs. Fletcher. « A few days ago our excellent friend Miss Kennedy brought me a letter which she had lately received from you, and from which I find that you rank at present amongst those blessed ones, who are distinguished by the holy title of Mourners in Zion. Let me not then be thought an impertinent intruder into the sanctuary of your sorrows, if I wish on this occasion to mingle my tears with yours, by entering into partnership with you in your affliction, and in all those heavenly consolations which the FATHER OF MERCIES never fails to mix in the cup of His afflicted children. Charity, we know, which is the spirit of Heaven, is never so happy as in the opportunity of pouring into the troubled bosom the oil of joy and gladness, and she knows at the same time that this oil comes only from the God of heaven, whose High and Holy Name is JESUS CHRIST. I might, therefore, say to you, as the King of Israel said to a mourner in his day, If the LORD do not help thee, whence should I help thee? nor should I conceive that the words contained anything of repulsion or of discouragement. For is not our GOD a present help in trouble, and do not all His dispensations, as well as His declarations, prove Him to be so? Is He not also above all trouble, and this in such a sort, that He not only controls it, by saying to its waves, Hitherto shall ye go and no further, but He also compels it to administer to His own purposes of blessing, so that every trouble opens the gates of some new joy, which otherwise could neither have been seen or tasted? I please and flatter myself with thinking that you have already experienced the truth of this sentiment, and that, even in the loss of your dear child (if it may be called a loss), you have found a more than proportionate gain through the communication and admission of some heretofore unknown consolation. And how do you know but that your dear child may have been the minister of that consolation ? We cannot, indeed, see with our bodily eyes that this has been the case, but the Eye of Faith, we know, possesses a more quick and penetrating vision, and being enlightened by the Light of the ETERNAL TRUTH, sees things as they are, not as they appear to be. To the Eye of Faith, therefore, the invisible world is near and visible, as this world is to the Eye of the Body, and, therefore, it sees all that the Word of God has revealed respecting that invisible world, and how the souls or spirits of the deceased are still alive, even more alive than when in the material body, and also are still near to those they loved and by whom they were loved, and even nearer than heretofore; and, further, that they are endowed with greater power, as well as stronger inclination, to comfort, support, and protect those whom they have left behind them. JESUS CHRIST, accordingly, informs His disciples, previous to His departure out of this world, It is expedient for you that I go away, for if I go not away, the Comforter will not come unto you, but if I go away, I will send Him unto you; and again, I go away, and come again unto you; thus instructing them that althongh He was leaving them as to bodily presence, yet He would still be virtually and really present with them as a HOLY COMFORTER, to guide, protect, and console. Doubt not, therefore, my dear madan, that what was true respecting JESUS CHRIST is true also respecting His children; so that when they quit this world, they enter immediately into a state of being, in which their capacity of intercourse and of blessing in respect of those they love is indefinitely increased. In devout prayer that you may feel all the comfort of this sentiment, and still enjoy both the presence and the society of your beloved child, I remain, &c."
The two following are of a different character :
To the same.
“Manchester: April 19, 1815. “My dear Madam, -I begin to think it long since I heard from you, and I feel anxious to know how you all do, and how you go on with your royal pupils? Does the light of the New Jerusalem shine as bright in a palace as in a cottage, and does it excite there the same joys and consolations? Are the King's daughters thus all glorious within ! It is not because a King's daughter is more honourable in the sight of God than the daughter of a peasant, nor because a palace, in His eyes, is more magnificent than a cottage, that I ask these questions ; but it is because the influence in one case is more commanding than in the other, and more likely to extend itself. Please to inform me, at the same time, as to the progress of the Princess - 's indisposition, and whether there is any prospect of her speedy recovery. Not that I feel very solicitous on that score, because I believe her to be in the hands of her Heavenly Father, who will compel all her infirmities to administer to His own Divine purpose of blessing and eternal salvation to her.”
To the same.
“Manchester: June 15, 1815. “What you say of the Princess – - is delightful, and it is my most devout prayer that she may continue to cherish the affection of heavenly truth, until it hath accomplished its blessed end, by elevating her mind to an everlasting conjunction with the Supreme Good, in the love and practice of all that is pure, wise, and holy. Her example must doubtless have its happy effect on others, and how can we tell what an instrument she is to be made, under the Divine Providence of the Most High, for the purpose of introducing others to eat of the Tree of Life, which is in the midst of the Paradise of God! What would I not give for an opportunity of hinting to her, that in the garden of her intellectual mind, that Tree of Life already begins to bloom and bear its immortal fruit; and that the more she eats of that fruit so much the wiser, more blessed, and (I will add, by her leave,) more princely, she will every day become."
We conclude with a piece written when in his poetic vein, during a visit to his old friend, Dr. Watson, Bishop of Llandaff, at his seat on the banks of Windermere.
“ What means this vision of enchanting bliss ?
Whence comes this sacred awe that fuls the soul ?
Begone the vain Philosophy which thus
And come fair Spirit of Eternal Truth,
Delight to trace the features of a God." A further notice of this work, on one subject in particular, we reserve till next month,