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From The Saturday Review. ject it. We say most obstinately, because NATIONALITY AND RELIGION. they reject Christianity while having better
opportunities than idolaters, or even than We supported, in an article a little time Mahometans, of knowing what Christianity back, the doctrine set forth by Lord Ma- | really is. The vast mass of Christians have caulay, Dean Milman, and others, that the no sort of ethnical kindred with the first Reformation of the sixteenth century was converts of Galilee and Jerusalem. They essentially a Teutonic movement. We are the descendants of men who worshipped showed how the reformed doctrines had Zeus, Jupiter, Woden, and the less famous been accepted by the great bulk of the Teu- Gods of those lesser nations which seem a tonic nations of Europe, and by very few sort of appendage to Greeks, Romans, and besides the Teutonic nations. We argued Teutons. In this case, and in many others, also that the acceptance of the Reformation nations have adopted a religion, they have by the Teutonic nations, by England above become identified with it, they have made all
, was owing to a certain conformity in it as it were part of their national being, its doctrines, and still more in the political though it has been first preached to them incidents of those doctrines, with the na- by men of some other race, and though its tional character of those nations, and with tenets have been such as, before the event, the circumstances of their former history. they might have been expected to cast aside To us islanders above all, a system which with disdain. called for no submission to a foreign Power, Some religions again, and some particular which allowed us to develop our insular forms of the same religion, seem more easifeelings to their fullest growth, was natu- ly to allow the free development of narally acceptable above all others. But we tional life than others. The identification purposely kept ourselves from pointing out, of nationality and religion reached its exIest we should be drawn away too far from treme point among the ancient Hebrews. our proper subject, that this phenomenon, Judaism was, simply and solely, the religion according to which Teuton and Protestant of the Hebrew nation. The Jew was ready are, in modern Europe, names which are all to make proselytes, but such proselytes but interchangeable, is only one example were called on to become Jews. The worof a large class of phenomena of the same shipper of the God of Abraham was to bekind to be remarked in all times and coun- come, as far as adoption uld make him, tries of the world. We leave it to divines a son of Abraham. Mahometanism again and philosophers to explain the fact, but is essentially a proselytizing religion: it is the fact itself is beyond doubt, that certain of its very life and being to be so. Now forms of religion do commend themselves Mahometanism does not indeed require men in a special way to men of certain races, to become Arabs, as Judaism requires men that they seem, as it were, better suited to to become Jews; but it seems, when left to their national character and circumstances, itself, to bring all its converts, as far as that they embrace them more readily and may be, to a certain level of national becarry them out with greater zeal. We de- ing. It seems to raise them to a certain sign nothing beyond a plain statement of point, and to keep them from rising above historical facts; and we do not flatter our à certain point. It seems to stereotype a selves that we are going to put forward certain social and political state as its unanything that is at all new. But a collec- conscious ideal. And, if it has not made tion of facts, however well known, plainly all men Arabs, it has carried the Arabic stated and put into their right relation to language everywhere with it; the speech of one another, is often of great use. It is of the Koran has in some Mahometan countries special use on this sort of subject, on which displaced the native speech of the people, men's ideas are often greatly confused, led and in others it has been largely mingled away in many cases by mere misunderstand- with it. Comparing again Eastern and ings of nomenclature and historical geogra- Western Europe, it is plain that in the East phy.
nationality and religion become identified One thing must specially be marked at in a way in which they do not in the West. starting, that the religion which history A French Protestant is still a Frenchman; shows best to suit a particular nation is by an English Roman Catholic is still an Engno means always the immemorial faith of lishman; nay, we have found out that even that nation, or even a faith which has had the Jew may, if he chooses, be admitted to its origin among that nation. One exam- civil, political, and social equality with the ple, the greatest of all, is enough. Chris- Christian of either Church. It clearly is tianity is of Jewish origin, but the Jews not so in the East. Greek, Turk, Jew, are just the people who most obstinately re-1 Armenian, are words which express reli
gious as well as national differences. In on its chief as something more than a mere fact, the religious difference comes first. If civil ruler, as the temporal chief of Chrisa man changes bis religion, he changes his tendom. Except so far as its faith has been nationality. The Orthodox Church and the displaced by Mahometanism, Christianity Greek nation are very far from being co- still includes all those nations which formed extensive expressions ; but what makes them part of the Roman Empire at its greatest not co-extensive is that the Orthodox Church extent; all the then heathen nations which contains the Greek nation and several other in the process of serving, conquering, or nations beside it. But if a man of any of dismembering it, came within the range of those nations forsakes his religion, if he its influence; all the heathen nations which ceases to belong to the Orthodox Church, afterwards came within the range of direct he is looked on as forsaking his nationality Roman influence, Imperial or Papal. That as well. Multitudes of Turks are of Greek is to say, it is the religion of Europe, inor Slavonic origin; Constantinople was cluding of course 'European colonies; it is stormed, and the Ottoman Empire was ad- the religion of the small remnant in Roman ministered, by the children of Christian Asia — in Roman Africa there is hardly so parents. But the proselyte to Islam, wheth- much as a remnant – which Mahometan iner voluntary or involuntary, whether the vasions have failed to eat up. Beyond these mature renegade or the Janissary kidnapped limits its extent has always been small and in his childhood, ceased to be Greek, Slave, its existence precarious. .Abyssinia stands or whatever he was before; the mere fact alone as an example of an ancient Chrisof proselytism enrolled him among the rul- tian Kingdom surviving in a country which ing caste, and made him, for all practical never formed part of the Empire, and which purposes, a Turk. Even the Oriental Chris- has never been settled by European colotian who forsakes the national form of Chris- nists. We leave divines and philosophers tianity for another greatly weakens, if he to explain the reasons. We only state the does not wholly cast off, the national tie. manifest fact. If the Articles would let us, The United Greek and the United Armenian we should say that there was something or are Greek and Armenian only in a very other in the national character or circumsecondary sense. So, in the further East, stances of all these nations which did denames like Hindoo an Parsee - strictly serve Christian enlightenment “of conmere names of nations, like English and gruity." French — have acquired a secondary re Looking again within the limits of Chrisligious meaning which has quite displaced tendom itself, it is easy to see four very the national meaning. If a Hindoo or a intelligible divisions. First, let us go back Parsee embraces Christianity or Mahome- four hundred years or thereabouts. We tanism, no one any longer speaks of him as should then see but three. There was first a Hindoo or a Parsee. In the East then the Western, the Latin Church, with the we may say that nationality and religion are Ronan Pontiff still its real spiritual chief, absolutely identical. Given a man's nation with the Roman Cæsar at least its nominal - his practical nation, not necessarily his temporal chief. Its pale embraced all ethnological pedigree - and you know his those nations which had at any time bowed religion. Given his religion, and you very either to the temporal sway of the Western often know his nation; you at least know Cæsar or to the spiritual teaching of the that he must belong to one out of two or Western Pontiff. Secondly, there was the three nations. In the West nationality has Eastern, the Orthodox, Church, the Church had a good deal to do with determining re- of the hardly defunct Roman Empire of the ligion, and religion has had something to East, and of those European nations which do with determining nationality. But, in had submitted either to the temporal domeither case, nationality or religion has been inion or to the spiritual teaching of the simply one element among other elements. New Rome. Thirdly, there were the remThe two things have never become identi- nants of the ancient national Churches of cal, as they have in the East.
the East - the heretics, as Roman and ByIf we cast our eye over Christendom and zantine orthodoxy deemed them, of Arits divisions, we shall easily see how exactly menia, Syria, and Eygpt. That is to say, they are marked out by certain great na- they were the Churches of those nations tional and historical landmarks. Christian- which had been politically incorporated ity is the religion of the Roman Empire and within the Empire of the Cæsars, but which of those nations which have come, more or had never cheerfully accepted either its less fully, under Roman influences. It was Greek or its Roman influences. Armenia, not without a meaning that the Empire in the oldest Christian Kingdom, Syria and later days took the title of Holy, and looked Egypt, representatives of a civilization and
a literature older than that of Greece and if it ever happens, be very different from Italy, had never become pupils of their the Reformation in the West. It will not masters. While the rest of the Empire, be a revolt. The utmost in the way of resave here and there a wild mountain tribe, volt that is likely to happen is for Bulgaria adopted either the Greek or the Latin lan- to claim to form an independent national guage, they clave to their own ancient Church as well as Russia and the Greek tongues, they moulded Christianity into Kingdom. There is no need to cast off a forms of their own, and they offered no hear- yoke where no yoke exists. If a reform, ty resistance to the Saracen invader. Abys- doctrinal or other, ever happens in the sinia, the spiritual colony of Egypt, the East, it is as likely to begin at Constantinoone Christian State wholly beyond the lim- ple as at Athens
or at Saint Petersburg. its of the Empire, of course takes its place A reform in the West could not begin at along with those nations which never wil- Rome, because the leading object of all lingly belonged to it. All these three di- reform was to cast off the authority of visions still remain, and, within the range Rome. of the last two, nationality
and religion are Nationality and religion then are in some still as identical as ever. But the events of parts of the world identical; in other the last three centuries and a half have parts, though not identical, they greatly added a fourth division. That is to say, influence one another. The ritual, the the Teutonic nations have risen against the discipline even the dogmas, which suit one spiritual domination of the elder Rome. A nation do not suit another. Such is plainly curious question now arises. We see that the fact, but beyond the statement of the Roman, Byzantine, Oriental, and Teutonic fact we do not presume to go. Christianity all exist. Will there ever be such a thing as Slavonic Christianity ? The great mass of the Slavonic nations, all
From The Saturday Review, 24 Oct. at least of the Eastern branch of the race,
FRANCE. have stood for ages towards the Eastern Church and Empire in nearly the same THE Spanish Revolution has perhaps relation in which the Teutons have stood done something for the general peace of to the Western Church and Empire. They Europe during the next few months. What have been half conquerors, balf disciples. plans, if any, the Emperor Napoleon had Will they ever revolt against the New formed, only those in his confidence can Rome as we have done against the Old ? tell. The settled discontent with which the If they ever do, it must be a revolt of a Tuileries regards the state of Germany had different kind. It must be a purely dog- perhaps found vent this last summer in the matic revolt. It is only accidentally that concoction of more than one scheme or the Byzantine Church has anywhere estab- conspiracy against the quiet of the Contilished a dominion against which national nent. Various ideal repartitions of Europe feeling is tempted to kick, as national feel have been designed in the Imperial Cabinet ing is tempted to kick against the dominion in the course of sixteen years of political of the Roman Church. Some of the na- dreaming, and 1868 has had, like the rest, tions belonging to the Orthodox Church its map, its programme, and possibly its have had, and still have, grievances to plan of a campaign. Great enterprises complain of at the hands of the Byzantine might have been undertaken again in the Patriarchate. But they are simply local and coming winter if it had not been for the temporary grievances, such grievances as irony of Fortune, which so constantly inthe appointment of Greek Bishops to Bul- terferes with the execution of the vague garian sees and the like. The Eastern purposes of irresolute men. Prussia, at Church never attempted to establish the any rate, is thought to be safe till next year, same sort of universal dominion as the when, unless anything else happens, the Western. The national Churches within French Emperor will again be hard at work its communion have always enjoyed a na- conquering General Moltke upon paper. tional hierarchy and the use of the national All that can be hoped is that something language in divine service. At this mo- may happen again next year, and, as the ment the national Churches of Greece and world is full of surprises, perhaps someRussia are in full spiritual communion with thing will. The Pope may be ill, or M. the mother Church of Constantinople, while Rochefort may be dead, or there will be a they are as independent of her in their in- Great Exhibition somewhere, or a new genternal constitution as the Church of Eng- eral election to the Corps Législatif, or the land is independent of Rome. There may Jesuits may have got into trouble by buybe a Reformation in the East, but it must, ing up all the land in Belgium, or M. Olli
vier have acquired the happiest influence and the Austrian Provinces would be, disat home over the mind of the French Em-tracted, if not persuaded, by the spectacle peror. Everything will once more neces- of a crusade for the cause of nationalities. sarily blow over, and the French nation be Even Garibaldi would feel a little uncertain consoled with the promise for the twentieth as to the path of duty, as he could not head time that the Edifice is now at last about at one and the same moment a guerilla war to be crowned, and a new law introduced in Poland and in Italy. To head such a about the public press. It is singular that Catholic league as this would be the Ema politician of the Emperor's grasp of mind peror's delight - that is to say, if it did not should be incessantly exhausting his own cost too many lives, and if he could calcutreasury and the patience of Europe by late with absolute certainty on its success. these indefinite prolongations and postpone- To have the Pope and the French Empress ments. War, it would seem, never is, but crying with joy at the news of alternate always is to be. The explanation is that Te Deums at Warsaw and Baden-Baden, to the Emperor cannot but perceive that the see French Marshals proudly prancing about war programme on which he is constantly at the head of military contingents from forcing himself to ponder is unsuited to the Catholic Spain and even Catholic Belgium, real wants of his age and country. He is and to be able to hope that the excitement by no means inaccessible to ideas of right about Poland might make the Roman quesand wrong, and a grain of conscience easily tion easier of solution, in which case Italian makes him sour. Those who are best ac- legions might yet be fighting with enthusiquainted with his habits and disposition ap- asm in the Polish forests side by side with pear agreed in thinking that he has no nat- the French Zouaves - all this is a sort of ural turn or inclination for engaging in a political picture which the Emperor of great and hazardous campaign. Handling course has often drawn at times in his rothe powder-barrel, and calculating the ef- mantic soul. The reconciliation of the Pafects of its explosion, is an occupation for pacy and of democracy would seem thus to which he has even a predilection, but firing be complete; and France would get the it would be an act of fury from which his Rhine, with the approval both of the patribetter nature, at well as his ordinary in- ots and the priests of Southern Europe. stincts, both equally recoil. Napoleon III., This dreamy, misty, Napoleonic fancy has like Ilamlet, might continue through whole been ruined, as it was sure in the ordinary years to brood over an enterprise which he course of things to be, by a very commoncould not bring himself to execute, if it place event. The Queen of Spain, who was were not for the natural tendency of political to have played the glorified part of at once clouds to precipitate themselves in wet lending men to France and contributing an weather. Englishmen know by experience air of sanctity to the undertaking, has sudthe meaning of " drifting into war,” and denly been deposed by her subjects, who the danger is lest the situation which the could not abide an intolerable mixture of Emperor has partly created should in its piety, misgovernment, and feminine deturn produce the catastrophe from which he pravity. The loss of an army on the eve shrinks.
of a desperate campaign is a serious affair, The general impression that a movement especially when the army is one on whose upon the Rhine was meant to coincide (in co-operation at the nick of time depends case of Russian intervention) with a revival the whole success of the arrangement. of Polish agitation and a Franco-Austrian Anxious as the Spanish Revolution may be expedition in favour of Catholic Poland, is to appease or propitiate the French Empire, doubtless founded upon a modicum of fact. liberated Spain is scarcely likely to embark Such a combination was probably one on in a speculative filibustering adventure, which the Imperial fancy has rested in its which at most could only end in the aggranpassage from one phase to another, and for disement of an already powerful neighbour. the present, like Beau Brummel's mangled And indeed, supposing that no such ingencravat's, must be considered to be one more ious scheme was seriously entertained at of the Emperor's failures. The advantage the Tuileries as a Franco-Catholic alliance, of the design, if it was ever really matured, still the explosion of a successful rebellion was doubtless that France might thus ex- in Spain has not been without its uses. pect to engage on her side a certain amount The dreams of an undecided person are of pious and a certain amount of revolution- easily disturbed. A rat behind the tapestry ary fervour. The Pope might bless the at the last might have kept IIamlet from banners whose mission was to avenge the avenging his father's ghost. No one can Catholic Bishops of Poland ; while the scat- feel sure what the French Emperor might tered spirits of sedition in France, Italy, or might not have attempted this winter, if
at the critical moment his resolution had one who heard Mr. Reverdy Johnson, and not been shaken by hearing a noise upon every one who has read what he said, his frontier.
must have felt a conviction that the repre
sentative of the United States was not It is not pleasant to think that the peace speaking mere smooth things to please for of Europe is at the mercy of any single a moment, but was uttering the genuine man; but no condition is without its con- sentiments of his own mind and of the soling side, and it is some comfort to feel minds of a vast number of his countrymen. that the French Emperor has his nerves. They wish, as we wish, to forget the past, Les nerfs, said the philosopher, voilà l'homme. and to go on better and more kipdly for the Napoleon III. might have been a bold des- future; and in nothing was Mr. Johnson's perado, with the spirit and determination speech more cominendable, nothing showed of a burglar. As it is, he is a sovereign the wisdom and generosity of a statesman who is reluctant to shed blood, who knows more, than the manner in which he dealt what military glory means to the poor and with the objection that there were some industrious, and who in his heart, perhaps, present who ought not to have been there, is not sorry when something occurs to ren- and who while the civil war was going on, der it easy for him to put off his great con- had sympathized, and even perhaps coquests till another day. He would doubt- operated with the South. The partisans less rejoice, for the sake of humanity, if of the North in this country are even more Prussia at the last moment would give him American than the Americans themselves, a small, even the smallest piece of tribute and were in a state of great fury and agitamoney. What the representative of French tion because Mr. Laird and other Coppervanity requires is indeed rather consideration heads had been asked to be present. They and deference than concession; and Napo- expected that Mr. Johnson would feel the leon III, often perhaps sighs (in the inter- same horror at sitting down to eat with ests of humanity) to think what a happy such persons as an American Republican family the Continent would be if France feels at sitting down to eat with a negro. might enjoy even the faintest shadow of But Mr. Johnson was much wiser than his hegemony. His policy, alternately bold and friends, and not only did not allow the tinid, humitarian and reactionary, conclu- presence of Mr. Laird to spoil his dinner, sively shows that despotic power cannot but went out of his way to express his satsafely be entrusted even to philosophers isfaction that the representative of the who have what called the popular fibre. United States was treated as if the civil The Empire is not peace. It has not justi- war was now past and forgotten, and was fied the first blast of trumpets with which welcomed simply as the guest of English its chief entered the political arena. Neith- merchants and statesmen. How are outer, on the other hand, is the Empire war. standing difficulties ever to be surmounted, The Empire, to Europe, means suspense. how are Americans ever to get over the How long Prussia will consent to have the soreness which they felt while the war sword of Damocles hang over her head has was going on, if the member for Birkenyet to be seen; but if she does not mind head is not to be asked to a Liverpool dinit, and if 1868 is to close quietly in spite of ner because the English friends of the all the rumours of the autumn, one cannot North have a too vivid remembrance of but allow that suspense is not so bad but his misdoings? If Mr. Johnson had shown that certainty might be worse.
himself petty enough to resent that the representative of one-half of the port of Liver
pool should have been asked to meet him, From The Saturday Review, 24 Oct. he would not have been the man to estabMR. REVERDY JOHNSON AT LIVERPOOL.
lish the friendship of the two nations on a
firm basis. It must have been gratifying to The Liverpool banquet to Mr. Reverdy all the sensible portion of his audience to Johnson has been a complete success. find that he frankly dealt with the matter in Coming at exactly the right moment, when a graceful and generous manner. Perhaps, the minds of men on both sides of the At- however, his audience was even more gratlantic were prepared and anxious for some ified by the declaration which he took upon sign of reciprocal good-feeling and assured himself to make with regard to the public amity between the two nations, it has risen debt of the United States. It seems to into an event of real political importance, have been an afterthought, for it was only by affording a means of placing on record at the close of the entertainment that he the good relations now existing between touched on this point. Probably some of England and the United States. Every his Liverpool friends thought that, as he