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also benefited. There can be no danger in circulating a work like the present far and wide, for it is written by ona who is as remarkable for his scientific acquirements as for his loyalty to the Church. We trust that the extraordinary manifestations which are at present attracting so much attention at Baden and Alsace will also be examined in the same spirit as that in which Dr. Lebfevre has conducted his inquiry in the present instance, in order that if they stand the test, the Catholic world may not be deprived of a great consolation. We are glad to find that Dr. Imbert Gourbeyre, Professor of the Clermont-Ferrand School of Medicine, whose evidence as to the development of Louise Lateau's ecstasy under certain circumstances is quoted by Dr. Lebfevre, and whose letter in answer to some strictures of the “Siècle” appears at the end of this work, has already paid a visit to Alsace for the purpose of investigation, and has written to the “Univers” on the subject. However, the case of Louise Lateau is now so thoroughly well established, that no Catholic need scruple to bring it forward as a proof that God is still near to this generation, notwithstanding all its shortcomings. Such a paper as the “ Lancet" may still continue to maintain, as we pointed out when noticing the first edition of this work, that her state is so far from extraordinary, that the real difficulty is to prevent, people falling into it, or such publications as the “British Medical Journal” may still believe that her ecstatic visions and bleeding skin are in no way opposed to or above the ordinary laws of nature; but unprejudiced Protestants will not thoughtlessly reject the evidence, and will be led on to further inquiry, while Catholics will thank God for having visited His people.
As have already called the attention of the public to this important work, we need only now again recommend it most earnestly to their notice, for the sake both of the edification to be derived from its perusa), and of the admirable institution for whose profit it is sold. We may perhaps, however, be allowed to make a remark before we conclude. There is one important fact connected with Louise Lateau's ecstasy which seems common to other similar manifestations. Certainly the same fact is related both of Maria Mörl and Maria Dominica Lazzari, the Addolorata and Ecstatica of the Tyrol. We allude to that wonderful and instantaneous obedience shown, even in the midst of ecstasy, to those who have spiritual jurisdiction over the soul. So far as we can gather, this obedience is not confined to the confessor alone, but is paid to all legitimate superiors. Surely, if there be any lesson which more than another these ecstatic maidens teach us, it is this: “Hear the Church.” This is a lesson by which all men may profit; Catholics by learning still more to value their high privilege of being children of the Church ; Protestants and other non-Catholics by perceiving that God, even when speaking Himself to the soul, is obedient to the voice of the Church, which is His Body. We understand that before long Dr. Imbert Gourbeyre will publish the result of his investigations into the case of the Ecstatica of Oria.
The Works of Aurelius Augustine, Bishop of Hippo. A new Translation.
Edited by the Rev. MARCUS Dops, M.A. Vol. III. Writings in Connection with the Donatist Controversy. Translated by Rev. J. R. KING, M.A. Vol. IV. The Anti-Pelagian Works. (Vol. I.) Translated by
PETER HOLMES, D.D. Origen contra Celsum. Being Vol. XXIII. of the Ante-Nicene Christian
Library. Translated by Rev. FREDERICK CROMBIE, D.D. Early Liturgies and other Documents. Vol. XXIV. of the same Series.
T. & T. Clark, Edinburgh, 1872.
E here notice four volumes of Patristic translations, published by
the edition of S. Augustine noticed in our number for last October, and the other two forming the concluding volumes of the Ante-Nicene Series, to which we have had occasion to draw attention before.
In beginning their post-Nicene series with S. Augustine, and in promising S. Chrysostom to follow, the publishers have no doubt chosen the names out of the whole range of Patrology which are secure of the greatest amount of attention. The “City of God," which was the first of S. Augustine's works issued, though it had been translated several times before, was fairly sure of being received with interest. But the volumes now before us are of a very different kind. There are chapters and paragraphs in S. Augustine's controversial writings which are as eloquent and grand as any he has written, and there are not wanting attractive passages of history, and striking personal allusions. Moreover, S. Augustine being the great authority he is, the continual allusion to Holy Scripture, and the incessant direct and indirect commentary on Scripture passages, will always bring the student back to his pages. But still the controversial writings, of which we have samples in these two volumes on the Donatist and Pelagian heresies, must be called dry to the ordinary reader. The extreme minuteness with which the Saint answers objections, the repetitions, and the want of liveliness inherent in a buried, or rather fossilized, dispute, are apt to turn away all but professional students from a study of the answer to Petilianus, the books on Baptism, or the of Pelagius." It does not follow from this that these translations should not have been undertaken. On the contrary, it is a sign that the ranks of the students of S. Augustine are enlarging. Such an undertaking as this is rarely begun without some kind of demand ; and the demand will be indefinitely increased by the supply. We may hope that good will coine of this presenting the Fathers to the English public in an English dress. Any one who knows something of the dense ignorance which possesses not only the ordinary British church or chapel-goer, not only the ladies who distribute tracts and read novels, but the masters of thousands of parsonages throughout the land, will be glad that there is a prospect of Messrs. Clark's translations finding their way to drawing-room tables, and taking their place on the desk or the shelves of the rector's “study.” Very few of the men, not to say the women, who watch over the theological concerns of the land, have any but the mistiest notion, we do not say of modern “ Roman” practices, but even of that fragmentary Christianity which is presented to them by their own prayerbook, or which is common to the Roman Church and to those which have thrown off her obedience. The glances into S. Augustine, in English, which may now be expected, will astonish a good many well-meaning Protestants. They will take up the book with varying notions about the great African doctor. Most will think him a sound Protestant, from having heard him quoted by Evangelicals on many platforms and in divers pamphlets. Some will go further and expect to find Calvinism well developed in the antiPelagian treatises. Such persons will be somewhat astonished to find s. Augustine talking about the Primacy of Peter, in a strain such as they might hear in a Catholic Church in England. He first quotes the well-known passage of S. Cyprian in the Epistle to Quintus, beginning, “ For neither did Peter, whom the Lord chose first” (it should be translated " as the first”) “and on whom our Lord built his Church," &c. He then goes on to speak himself of the Apostle Peter, “in whom the Primacy of the Apostles shines with such exceeding grace” (“ shines” is not a good word; the original is tam excellenti gratiâ præeminet). (Vol. iii. p. 32.) This will be an interesting experience to the controversial parson (or his lady); and it would be a profitable exercise for them to try if they could bring themselves to speak as S. Augustine speaks. They would also find Purgatory in S. Augustine. At page 370 of Dr. Holmes's translation of the anti-Pelagian writings, they would come upon a distinction between sinners who are to be punished everlastingly, and sinners “ of whom the Apostle declares that they shall be saved, yet so as by fire after their (evil) work has been burnt up.'” Ritualists would find much profit in a careful reading of the treatise De Baptismo against the Donatists. It is impossible for a candid High Churchman to doubt that the man who wrote that work, with its fervent appeals against breaking off from unity, and its continued reference to the “orbis terrarum," would address words of the same import to him and his party, if he were writing at this moment. Other Christians would be surprised to find S. Augustine advocating the use of force on the part of the civil power against heretics. Mr. King, the translator of the Donatist treatises, is hinself astonished at this. Speaking of the letter to Count Bonifacius, which is the concluding treatise in this volume, he says that S. Augustine "enunciates principles of coercion which, though in him they were subdued and rendered practically of little moment by the spirit of love which formed so large an element in his character, yet found their natural development in the despotic intolerance of the Papacy, and the horrors of the Inquisition.” (Preface, xiii.) Mr. King is one of those men who need to be reminded that the theoretic intolerance of the Catholic Church-a kind of intolerance which every one must have who believes there is such a thing as God's true revelation-never becomes practical except when the overwhelming majority of a national community are Catholics ; and that the “horrors of the Inquisition" are partly imaginary, and at the worst no more "horrible” than the other non-religious portion of the criminal law of the times in which the Inquisition existed. Of course it is really the principle of religious compulsion that is objected to ; but, if so, writers should not colour their protests by “horrors" and hard words. If religious compulsion is wrong in itself, then punishments for heresy will be " horrible ;" if it is right, such punishment will be only legitimate severity. S. Augustine, in the passage alluded to, lays down so clearly the principles on which the medieval Church acted that it is worth while to quote his words.
“As to the argument of those men who are unwilling that their (the Donatists”) impious deeds should be checked by the enactment of righteous laws, when they say that the Apostles never sought such measures from the kings of the earth, they do not consider the different character of that age, and that everything comes in its own season. For what emperor had as yet believed in Christ, so as to serve Him in the cause of piety by enacting laws against impiety?...... For a man serves God in one way in that he is a man, in another way in that he is also king. In that he is a man he serves Him by living faithfully ; but in that he is also king, he serves Him by enforcing with suitable rigour such laws as ordain what is righteous, and punish what is the reverse."
After bringing forward, as instances of the righteous severity of rulers, the edicts of Ezechias, of Josias, of Darius, and of Nebuchodonosor against idolatry, impiety and blasphemy, he continues :
“But so soon as the fulfilment began of what is written: 'All kings shall fall down before Him, all nations shall serve Him,' what sober-minded man could say to kings, 'Let not any thought trouble you within your kingdoms as to who restrains or attacks the Church of your Lord ; deem it not a matter in which you should be concerned, which of your subjects may choose to be religious or sacrilegious,' seeing that you cannot say to them, Deem it no concern of yours which of your subjects may choose to be chaste or which unchaste.' For why, when freewill is given to God by man, should adulteries be punished by the laws, and sacrilege allowed? Or if these faults, which are committed not in contempt but in ignorance of religious truth, are to be visited with lighter punishment, are they therefore to be neglected altogether? It is indeed better (as no one ever could deny) that men should be led to worship God by teachers, than that they should be driven to it by fear of punishment or pain ; but it does not follow that because the former course produces the better men, therefore those who do not yield to it should be neglected. . . Wherefore, if the power which the Church has received by Divine appointment in its due season, through the religious character and the faith of kings, be the instrument by which those who are found in the highways and hedges-that is, in heresies and schisms--are compelled to come in, then let them not find fault with being compelled, but consider whither they are compelled.” (Vol. iii. pp. 495-500.)
(Mr. King has “whether they be so compelled,” which is probably a misprint, the Latin being “quo cogantur attendant”). If the word “kings” in the foregoing passages be changed into “Governments,” we have principles that apply to every age of the world.
The Five Treatises of S. Augustine against the Pelagian heresy, translated by Dr. Holmes in the second of the volumes named above, are not the first in interest of the fifteen which he has actually left, but only the first in order of time. In looking through the volume, it is curious to speculate as to the
reception its contents will receive at the present day. Omitting the question of the probable sale of the series and its profit to the publishers, it seems difficult to suppose that much attention will be paid to S. Augustine's stiff writing on the intricacies of infant baptism, or his exposition of Pelagius's quibbles, except by those who attended to such things before this translation appeared-students of Catholic theology, chiefly, a few Evangelicals, inheritors of the spirit of Beza or Arminius, and omnivorous German historians. The great and fundamental question raised by the Pelagian heresy is as vital in our days as it was in the days of S. Augustine. But in the fifth century the discussion was whether Pelagius could belong to the Church-to the body of Christ, which was regulated by the Holy Scriptures and the bishops ; whereas, in our times, it is very certain that a man who denies grace cannot be a Christian in any real sense of the word, and the dispute is whether it is necessary to believe as a Christian or not. The Pelagian heresy meant the cause of Naturalism against Redeeming Grace. Those who wish to see how Pelagianism is Naturalism-how it contradicts the Scriptures on the Fall of Man, on man's will, on man's passions, on regeneration and merit through Christ, will find all they can wish for in the writings of S. Augustine.
Dr. Holmes has some good remarks in his Preface on this subject :
“ The key to this wonderful influence is Augustine's knowledge of Holy Scripture, and its profound suitableness to the facts and experience of our entire nature. Perhaps to no one, not excepting S. Paul himself, has it been ever given so wholly and so deeply to suffer the manifold experiences of the human heart, whether of sorrow and anguish from the tyranny of sin, or of spiritual joy from the precious consolations of the Grace of God. Augustine speaks with authority here ; he has traversed all the ground of inspired writ, and shown us how true is its portraiture of man's life.” (p. 18.)
The translation of these two new volumes of S. Augustine seems to be exceedingly well excuted. There has been no attempt to re-write the original in a more modern dialect of thought, and therefore the English reads a little stiff and complicated at times, and requires some attention to catch its full meaning. But faithfulness more than makes up for whatever is wanting in ease and transparency. We will mention a few of the mistakes which we think we have detected. At the very commencement of the Anti-Pelagian volume it is a little unfortunate to render S. Augustine's humble phrase, “ nostrorum peccatorum,” by the words “the sin which is inherent in us all ;” he merely means his own (actual) sins. At p. 166, the translator renders “se sibi ad vivendum caput facit” by “makes himself the chief aim of his life;" whereas it should be “makes himself the source of his own works.” A little lower down on the same page the intrusion of the word “alone” makes S. Augustine talk unsound doctrine by seeming to say that all that can be done by a sinner is a sin. There is a curious mistranslation at p. 236. S. Augustine tells his correspondents that he has carefully read through the book which they had sent, interrupting, to some extent, what he was actually busy with (intermissis paululum quæ in manibus erant). What cay have possessed Dr. Holmes that he should have rendered this clause, “omitting only the few points which are plain enough to everybody!" In the “Donatist” volume, at p. 32, Mr. King translates the epithet “poste