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approbation. Such approbation was expressed by the king's letter, in which the Catechism is thus described : ‘Çùm brevis et explicata Catechismi ratio, à pio quodam et erudito viro con, scripta, nobis ad cognoscendum offeretur, ejus pertractationem et diligentem inquisitionem quibusdam episcopis, et aliis eruditis, commisimus, &c.' It does not seem likely, that the king would have mentioned Poynet, who was now bishop of Winchester, in no higher terms than as pius et eruditus vir; and from his referring the book to bishops, we may suppose that it came from one who was not of thạt rank.” I must confess, I do not see the force of this conclusion : if the work was that of a bishop, to whom with greater propriety might it be referred than to his peers ? We might, in the same strain of reasoning, contend that because the book was referred to other learned men, as well as bishops, it therefore came from one who was not of that description.
More acute is the observation which fol. lows, that (9) “the internal evidence of the book warrants us to assign it to Nowell. For
(9) Anecdotes of Literature, &c. by the Rev. W. Belue, 1808. vol.iii. pp. 23, 24.
upon a comparison of it with that of which he is the acknowledged author, which he drew up at Cecil's request, and presented to the Convocation in 1562, and published in 1570, it will be found that the latter is only an enlargement of the former, of which the plan, the matter, and the doctrines are regularly followed, and frequently the same words and expressions are used." These two books, indeed, .have much in common; but the Catechism of 1570 is easily attainable, and therefore (as I said) may be compared with what is copied in this volume. (r) “ Whosoever was the author," as Strype relates, “ the archbishop we may conclude to be the furtherer and recommender of it unto the king; it being that prelate's great design by Catechisms, and Articles of Religion, and plain Expositions of the Fundamentals, to instil right principles into the minds of youth, and common people, for the more effectual rooting out popery, that had been so long entertained by the industrious nurselling up the nation in ignorance. * Among the minutes of matters, which were to be considered in the Convocation of 1562, one indeed
(r) Mem, of Abp. Cranmer, B. II. ch. 34.
was, (8) “A Catechism is to be set forth in Latin : which is already done by Mr. Dean, of Paul's, [Nowell,] and only wanteth viewing." This is supposed to be the Catechism, published in 1570; in the prefatory address to which, there is, however, (t) no mention made by Nowell of the Catechism of Edward the VIth. Archdeacon Churton considering Nowell to have (u) " availed himself of almost all that was excellent in Poinets Catechism,” therefore pronounces, that " he has by his masterly arrangement, application, and improvement, of what was once another's, made it his own ; and intitled himself to the praise of the architect, who, in constructing a fair and commodious edifice, disdains not to use old as well as new materials.”
The last extracts, given in this volume, from the works of our own reformers, are from that admirable specimen of earnest and vigorous writing, the Apologia Ecclesiæ Anglicanæ of bishop Jewel ; which (a) was finished in 1561; and
(s) Strype, Am. Ref. Qu. Eliz. and Churton, Life of Nowell, p. 166.
(6) Churton, Life of Nowell, p. 172.
was published in 1562 by the queen's authority, was recognised as a national confession of faith, and as such has been printed in the “Corpus Confessionum Fidei.”. It spread into all the countries of Europe; and was soon after translated into our own language, by lady Bacon, wife of Sir Nichoļas Bacon; into German, Italian, French, Spanish, and Dutch ; and was printed in Greek at Constantinople, under the direction of Cyril the patriarch. The character of it is well drawn by Dr. Humfrey, the biographer of the prelate, (y) “ Apologia verò sic confecta est, ut prima pars sit veræ doctrinæ illustratio, et paraphrastica quædam duodecim fidei Christianæ articulorum expositio : secunda, succincta et solida objectionum reprehensio. Si spectetur ordo, nihil distributius ; si perspicuitas, nihil lucidius ; si stylus, nihil tersius; si verba, nihil splendidius ; si res, nihil nervosius." was also among the designs of the Convocation, already noticed, that to Nowell's Catechism, and to “ certain Articles concerning the principal grounds of Christian religion-much like to
(y) Joannis Juelli Vita, &c, Laurentio Humfredo, S. T. P. Theologiæ apud Oxon, Prof. Reg. autore. 1573, p. 187.
such Articles as were set forth a little before the death of king Edward,” should be “adjoined the Apology lately set forth ;” and that all these should be "joined in one book, and by common consent be authorized as containing true 'doctrine.” But for this harmony of doctrine “in one book,” we find no further preparation : of the Articles, however, the establishment was now enacted.
Such are the several publick documents, or declarations, produced or made before the establishment of the THIRTY-NINE ARTICLES OF RELIGION, from which I have given extracts ; to which the framers of these Articles directed their attention ; with the spirit of which they concur; and the words of which they almost literally adopt. To those Articles of Edward the sixth, which illustrate the (2) doctrines, offered to notice, in this volume, they added what is now the twelfth, Of Good Works. " Albeit that Good Works, which are the fruits of Faith, and follow after Justification, cannot put away our sins, and endure the severity of God's judgement ; yet are they pleasing and acceptable to
(2) See p, 1, 123, 124.