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same sort of employment *; you may find something to correct in every sheet. I was indeed, though a stranger to his person, at first something prejudiced in favour of his discretion; that he was at least wise enough to retire from more danger; and that I might say of him, as Horace does of a Nation, not well acquainted with the art of War,
Laxo meditatur arcu . Cedere campis. But, if he has a inind to try his fortune once more in Paul's Church-yard*, whatever I may think of his courage, I shall have no great opinion of his conduct. As for you, I am sure it can never be your business to drop a controversy in which you have nothing to fear. Make the most of him; and, in the style of the Votes, call him to order.”
This threatened answer, I believe, never appeared ; but the Vicar was anonymously defended in “ A full Justification of the Doctrines contained in Mr. Bowman's Sermon, &c." probably a production of his own. And indeed it is generally supposed that his insignificant work was by no means deserving the notice which was taken of it from so many different quarters l. Besides nine or
This threat the Vicar of the Do
* Mr. Bowyer was then printing some of the most difficult parts of Thuanus, to which Mr. Clarke alluded. + The Scythians, 3 Carm. viii. 22. Mr. Stephen Austen, the bookseller, lived there. See p. 460.
In 1740, it appears that Mr. Bowyer printed, for Mr. Hut. ton, a pamphlet called “A Reply to Mr. Bowman's Letter to the Inhabitants of Dewsbury."
11 “ Bwucéve Kaubo; or, Hark to Bowman, 1731 ; containing Remarks, Reflections, Speculations, Considerations, Ruminations, and Animadversions, upon, together with many just and proper Recriminations and Reprehensions of, Parson William Bowman's (the double Yorkshire Vicar's) Visitation Declamation, held forth at Wakefield, 1731. At first published in the Journals of the most renowned Grubean Society, and now collected and digested into one orderly and methodical six-penny Tract, for the good, emolument, and merriment, of the Publick; by the special order and command of the said Society.
ten pamphlets, the papers of the time abounds with strictures on a performance, which would of itself have “sunk into waste-paper and oblivion*.” Some poetical squibs, which it gave birth to, are preserved at the end of Mr. Bowver's Remarks; and, the whole was humorously burlesqued under the title of “ Mr. Bowman's Sermon preached at Wakefield in Yorkshire versified, by Christopher Crambo, Esq. 1731.”
.“ I lost an opportunity of seeing Vir. Bowman, by not being at Halland the last public day. He made there a clieerful appearance in a sinall synod of the neighbouring Clergy, who were so coniplaisant as not to mention one word of the ministry. The first account of his Sermon was from you; and you say you mention some parts of it, because I would not allow you that the Presbyterian opinion was the prevailing one. But sure there is nothing in Mr. Bowman's Sermon in favour of their principles, any more than ours. They are as strict in their way as we are fin ours), and as far from brother Bowman's latitude: they would not admit of ministers without their own ordination, nor talk so lightly of it. But whatever faults may be in the Sermon, I suppose your friend Mr. Austen thinks it the very best that ever he printed. There is nothing that diverts me so much in the whole per
. Bome, Bome, Bome.” * " The usual fate," says Swift, « of common answerers to books which are allowed to have any merit. There is indeed an exception when any great genius thinks it worth his while to expose a foolish piece. To answer a book effectually, requires more pains and skill, more wit, learning, and judgment, than were employed in writing it." Apologu prepired to the Tale of a Tub. -Nobody but Voltaire could reply to dull answerers, without losing by it; he replied to all, and succeeded wonderfully. + See them in the “ Miscellaneous Tracts," p. 76.
Mr. Stephen Austen, who published Mr. Bowman's Sermon; which passed through at least six cilitions.
formance, as his being called an Erastian; as if so much ill language could arise only from an untoward disposition in his brethren towards calling names; for my part, I look upon it as a compli„ment, which he should have less reason to be offended with, because he has received so few upon this occasion. Beza (who was one of Erastus' adversaries) said of him, that he was in sacris literis diligenter versatus, et qui egregiam operam ad Heidelbergensis ecclesiæ instaurationem navavit:' I doubt whether Mr. Bowman will ever be so much honoured with the applause either of his adversaries or his friends. His (Erastus's) theological works were first printed at London by the Archbishop's
Whitgift's licence; but why, or with what design, is a secret that I cannot find out; none of our ecclesiastical historians, that I have seen, taking notice of it. He was a physician of Heidelberg; and in a public disputation in that city, A. D. 1568, opposed Dr. George Withers, an Englishnan, in a' question about Excommunication. His arguments were afterwards drawn up at large; but never printed in his life-time; and if brother Bowman had in this respect been an Erastian, I do not think it would have been an injury to his character. Ile permitted indeed some of his friends to take copies of his reasons, and so the question was privately controverted between him and his correspondents. He died in 1583; and six years after his book was printed with this remarkable title: Explicatio gravissimæ quarstionis, utrum Excommunicatio, quatenus Religionem intelligentes et amplexantes à sacramentorum - usu propter admissum facinus arcet, mandato nitatur divino, an excogitata sit ab hominibus. Pesclavii, ápud Baocium Sultaceterum, A. 1589.' This, Mr. Selden (to whom I owe this account, lib. I. de Synedriis, p. 1016), says should be, Londini, apud Joannem Wolfium *. The coinmon methods of excommunication will certainly admit of very strong objections; though how far Erastus carried that point, I cannot say, having never seen this book; but, for some years Erastianism has been a name for an utter rejection of all Christian discipline; whether justly or not, seems a question which I should be glad to be informed of. The account which is given of this sect in
* In the Hall-book of the Company of Stationers is this entry: " 20 Junii 1589, John Wolf entered for his copy a
Dictionnaire Royale de l'Academie' is surprizing: ? Erastiens-sorte d'Heretiques, qui firent une faction pendant les troubles d'Angleterre,' &c. They seem willing to allow us the honour of being the authors of all heresy, when we are only the importers. But I have troubled you sufficiently with Thomas Erastus, and should, if I had room, say as much of Prolegomena ad N. T. &c. The author [Wetstein) is a foreigner, and a friend of the great Bentley ; and, in my opinion, disposes the account of his MSS. in a very awkward manner *. I am almost tempted to think of him, what Thirlby says of poor Grabe, * Neque ingenio, neque judicio, neque si verum dicere licet doctrinâ, satis ad eam rem instructus.” Mr. Clarke to Mr. Bowyer, Sept. 22, 1731 of.
Among other books of consequence printed by Mr. Bowyer in this year, were,
Treatise of Thomas Erastus, De Ercommunicatione, reprinted by M. Fortescue, to be allowed by the Archbishop of Canterbury.”
* “ There is an awkwardness in the disposal of the MSS.; but perhaps it is owing to enumerating them first for the Gospels, and then for the Epistles; and perhaps he has not seen them all, when he wrote his first account, which occasioned supplemental mention. Surely, now the work itself is published, Mr. Clarke's opinion of Wetstein's abilities is hardly just, cere tainly not candid.” T. F.
t “ Thirlby passed the same self-sufficient censures on Dr. Bentley, in p. 18 of his edition of Justin Martyr; and in his preface he treated Meric Casaubon and Isaac Vossius in a manner not much different. MS Letter from Dr. Charles Ashtan to Dean Moss.
“ Humfredi Llwyd, Armigeri, Britannicæ Descriptionis Commentariolum : necnon de Monâ Insulâ, et Britannicâ Arce sive Armamentario Romano Disceptatio Epistolaris *. Accedunt Æræ CambroBritannicæ. Accurante Mose Gulielmo, A. M. R. S. Soc.”
* “ I made my compliments to Mr. Williams for his present of Humphrey Lhwyd; and took the liberty to mention that he had left some mistakes in his author, which he should have set right in the notes, particularly that the British Church observed Easter in the same way as the Asiatic churches, quartadecima lunæ ; when it is very plain from Bede that the dispute between the Britains and Saxons was of another kind. Mr. Smith has put that beyond all controversy." Mr. Clarke to Mr. Bowyer, Dec. 16, 1731.
+ Of Mr. Moses Williams I shall take a future opportunity of speaking more at large; here only observing, that his wellselected library was purchased by William Jones, esq. one of the last of those genuine mathematicians, admirers, and contemporaries of Sir Isaac Newton, who cultivated and improved the sciences in the eighteenth century. The friendship of Newton he had obtained by publishing, when only 26 years old, the “ Synopsis Palmariorum Matheseos,” a masterly and perspicuous abstract of every thing useful in the science of number and mag.', nitude. Some papers of Collins falling afterwards into his hands, he there found a Tract of Newton's, which had been communi-, cated by Barrow to Collins, who had kept up an extensive correspondence with the best Philosophers of his age. With the author's consent and assistance, Mr. Jones ushered this Tract into the world, with three other Tracts on Analytical Subjects; and thus secured to his illustrious friend the honour of having applied the method of infinite series to all sorts of curves, some time before Mercator had published his quadrature of the hyperbola by a similar method. These admirable works, containing the sublimest speculations in Geometry, were very seasonably brought to light in the year 1711, when the dispute ran high between Leibnitz and the friends of Newton, concerning the invention of Fluxions; a dispute which this valuable publication helped to decide. Mr. Jones was a teacher of the mathematicks in London under the patronage of Sir Isaac, and had the honour of instructing the first Earl of Hardwicke in that science; who gratefully enabled him to lay aside his profession, by bestowing on him a sinecure place of about 2001. a year. The Lord Chancellor Macclesfield also and his Son (who was afterwards the second Earl, and President of the Royal Society) were among the number of other respectable personages who received from hira the rudiments of the mathematicks. At Sherborne castle in Oxfordshire, Mr. Jones resided as a regular member of the family, and, whilst in this situation, had the misfortune to lose the