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a daily event, zest in the "regular thing," joy at an old feast. Sir Walter Scott is a curious instance of this. Every incident, habit, practice of old Scotland was connected and inseparably associated in his mind with strong genial enjoyment. To propose to touch one of those institutions, to abolish one of those practices, was to touch a personal pleasure-a point on which his mind reposed, a thing of memory and hope. So long as this world is this world, will a buoyant life be the proper source of an animated Conservatism. The "church-and-king" enthusiasm has even a deeper connection with this peculiar character. Carlyle has said, in his vivid way, "Two or three young gentlemen have said, 'Go to, I will make a religion.' This is the
exact opposite of what the irregular enjoying man can think or conceive. What is he, with his untrained mind and his changeful heart and his ruleless practice, to create a creed? Is the gushing life to be asked to construct a cistern? is the varying heart to be its own master, the evil practice its own guide? Sooner will a ship invent its own rudder, devise its own pilot, than the buoyant eager soul will find out the doctrine which is to restrain it. The very intellect is a type of the confusion of the soul. It has little arguments on a thousand subjects, hearsay sayings, original flashes small and bright, struck from the heedless mind by the strong impact of the world. And it has nothing else. It has no systematic knowledge; it has a hatred of regular attention. What can an understanding of this sort do with refined questioning or subtle investigation? It is obliged in a sense by its very nature to take what comes; it is overshadowed in a manner by the religion to which it is born; its conscience tells it that it owes obedience to something; it craves to worship something; that something, in both cases, it takes from the past. "Thou hast not chosen me, but I have chosen thee," might his faith say to a believer of this kind. A certain bigotry is altogether natural to him. His creed seems to him a primitive fact, as certain and evident as the stars.-The political faith (for it is a faith) of these persons is of a kind analogous. The virtue of loyalty assumes in them a passionate aspect, and overflows, as it were, all the intellect which should be devoted to the topic. This virtue, this need of our nature, arises, as political philosophers tell us, from the conscious necessity which man is under of obeying an external moral rule. We feel that we are by nature and by the constitution of all things under an obligation to conform to a certain standard, and we seek to find or to establish in this outer sphere an authority which shall enforce it, shall aid us in compelling others and likewise in mastering ourselves. When a man thoroughly possessed with this principle comes in contact with the institution of civil government as it now exists and as it
has always existed, he finds what he wants-he discovers an autho-
"Their breath is agitation, and their life
From without they crave a bridle and a curb. The doctrine of non-resistance is no accident of the Cavalier character, though it seems at first sight singular in so eager, tumultuous a disposition. So inconsistent is human nature, that it proceeds from the very extremity of that tumult. They know and feel that they cannot allow themselves to question the authority which is upon them; they feel its necessity too acutely, their intellect is untrained in subtle disquisitions, their conscience fluctuating, their passions rising. They know that if once they depart from that authority, their whole soul will be in tumult. As a riotous state tends to fall under a martial tyranny, a passionate mind tends to subject itself to an extrinsic law-to enslave itself to an outward discipline. "That is what the king says, boy; and that was ever enough for Sir Henry Lee." An hereditary monarchy is, indeed, the very embodiment of this principle. The authority is so defined, so clearly vested, so evidently intelligible; it descends so distinctly from the past, it is imposed so conspicuously from without. Any thing free refers to the people; any thing elected seems self-chosen. "The divinity that doth hedge a king" consists in his evidently representing an unmade, unchosen, hereditary duty.
The greatness of this character is not in Mr. Macaulay's way, and its faults are. Its license affronts him; its riot alienates
him. He is for ever contrasting the dissoluteness of Prince Rupert's horse with the restraint of Cromwell's pikemen. Its deep enjoying nature finds no sympathy. The brilliant style passes forward: we dwell on its brilliancy, but it is cold. has no tears for that warm life, no tenderness for that extinct joy. The ignorance of the character, too, moves his wrath: They were ignorant of what every schoolgirl knows." Their loyalty to their sovereign is the devotion of the Egyptians to the god Apis, who selected "a calf to adore." Their non-resistance offends the philosopher; their license is commented on with the tone of a precisian. Their indecorum does not suit the dignity of the historian. Their rich free nature is unappreciated; the tingling intensity of their joy is unnoticed. In a word, there is something of the schoolboy about the Cavalier-there is somewhat of a schoolmaster about the historian.
It might be thought, at first sight, that the insensibility and coldness which are unfavourable to the appreciation of the Cavalier would be particularly favourable to that of the Puritan. It might be thought that a natural aloofness from things earthly would dispose a man to the doctrines of a sect which enjoins above all other commandments abstinence and aloofness from those things. In Mr. Macaulay's case it certainly has had no such consequence. He was bred up in the circle which more than any other has resembled that of the greatest and best Puritans-in the circle which has presented the evangelical doctrine in its most celebrated, influential, and not its least genial form. Yet he has revolted against it. The bray of "Exeter Hall" is a phrase which has become celebrated: it is an odd one for his father's son. The whole course of his personal fortunes, the entire scope of his historical narrative, show an utter want of sympathy with the Puritan disposition. It would be idle to quote passages; it will be enough to recollect the contrast between the estimate-say of Cromwell-by Carlyle and that by Macaulay, to be aware of the enormous discrepancy. The one's manner evinces an instinctive sympathy, the other's an instinctive
We believe that this is but a consequence of the same impassibility of nature which we have said so much of. M. Montalembert, in a striking éloge on a French historian-a man of the Southey type-after speaking of his life in Paris during youth (a youth cast in the early and exciting years of the first revolution, and of the prelude to it), and graphically portraying a man subject to scepticism, but not given to vice; staid in habits, but unbelieving in opinion; without faith and without irregularity,-winds up the whole by the sentence, that " he was hardened at once against good and evil." In his view,
the insensibility, which was a guard against exterior temptation, was also a hindrance to inward belief: and there is a philosophy in this. The nature of man is not two things, but one thing. We have not one set of affections, hopes, sensibilities, to be affected by the present world, and another and a different to be affected by the invisible world: we are moved by grandeur, or we are not; we are stirred by sublimity, or we are not; we hunger after righteousness, or we do not; we hate vice, or we do not; we are passionate, or not passionate; loving, or not loving; cold, or not cold; our heart is dull, or it is wakeful; our soul alive, or it is dead. Deep under the surface of the intellect lies the stratum of the passions, of the intense, peculiar, simple impulses which constitute the heart of man; there is the eager essence, the primitive desiring being. What stirs this latent being is another question. In general it is stirred by every thing. Sluggish natures are stirred little, wild natures are stirred much; but all are stirred somewhat. It is not important whether the object be in the visible or invisible world: whoso loves what he has seen, will love what he has not seen; whoso hates what he has seen, will hate what he has not seen. Creation is, as it were, but the garment of the Creator: whoever is blind to the beauty on its surface, will be insensible to the beauty beneath; whoso is dead to the sublimity before his senses, will be dull to that which he imagines; whoso is untouched by the visible man, will be unmoved by the invisible God. These are no new ideas; and the conspicuous evidence of history confirms them. Every where the deeply religious organisation has been deeply sensitive to this world. If we compare what are called sacred and profane literatures, the depth of human affection is deepest in the sacred. A warmth as of life is on the Hebrew, a chill as of marble is on the Greek. In that literature itself the most tenderly-religious character is the most sensitive to earth. Along every lyric of the great Psalmist thrills a deep spirit of human enjoyment; he was alive as a child to the simple aspects of the world; the very errors of his mingled career are but those to which the open, impulsive, warm-breathed character is most prone; its principle, so to speak, was a tremulous passion for that which he had seen, as well as that which he had not It is no paradox, therefore, to say, that the same character which least appreciates the impulsive and ardent Cavalier is also the most likely not to appreciate the warm zeal of an overpowering devotion.
Some years ago it would have been necessary to show at length that the Puritans came at all near to this idea. The no
tion had been that they were fanatics, who simulated zeal, and
hypocrites, who misquoted the Old Testament. A new era has arrived; one of the great discoveries which the competition of authors has introduced into historical researches has attained a singular popularity; the beam has gone into the opposite extreme. We are rather now, in general, in danger of holding too high an estimate of the puritanical character than a too low or contemptuous one. Among the disciples of Carlyle it is considered that having been a Puritan is the next best thing to having been in Germany. But though we cannot sympathise with every thing that the modern expounders of the new theory are prone to allege, and though we should not select for praise the exact peculiarities most agreeable to the slightly grim "gospel of earnestness," we are thoroughly aware of the great service which they have rendered to English history. No one will now ever overlook, that in the greater, in the original Puritans-in Cromwell, for example-the whole basis of the character was a passionate, deep, rich, religious organisation.
This is not in Mr. Macaulay's way. It is not that he is irreligious; far from it. "Divines of all persuasions," he tells us, "are agreed that there is a religion;" and he acquiesces in their teaching. But he has no passionate self-questionings, no indomitable fears, no asking perplexities. He is probably pleased at the exemption. He has praised Lord Bacon for a similar want of interest. "Nor did he ever meddle with those enigmas which have puzzled hundreds of generations, and will puzzle hundreds more. He said nothing about the grounds of moral obligation, or the freedom of the human will. He had no inclination to employ himself in labours resembling those of the damned in the Grecian Tartarus-to spin for ever on the same wheel round the same pivot. He lived in an age in which disputes on the most subtle points of divinity excited an intense interest throughout Europe; and no where more than in England. He was placed in the very thick of the conflict. He was in power at the time of the Synod of Dort, and must for months have been daily deafened with talk about election, reprobation, and final perseverance. Yet we do not remember a line in his works from which it can be inferred that he was either a Calvinist or an Arminian. While the world was resounding with the noise of a disputatious philosophy and a disputatious theology, the Baconian school, like Alworthy seated between Square and Thwackum, preserved a calm neutrality,-half-scornful, halfbenevolent, and, content with adding to the sum of practical good, left the war of words to those who liked it." This may be the writing of good sense, but it is not the expression of an anxious or passionate religious nature.