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against him.*

Luther treated his royal antagonist with sarcastic contempt, contending that truth and science knew no difference between the prince and the plebeian. The pope, however, craftily flattered the vanity of the royal author, by conferring upon him the title of Defender of the Faith,t which Henry was weak enough to value as the brightest jewel in his crown. This pompous reward from his holiness was conferred upon him in the year 1521.t

The haughty king soon discovered his ingratitude. He quarrelled with the pope, renounced his authority, and became his avowed enemy. Being weary of Queen Katharine his wife, with whom he had lived almost twenty years; and having long sought, but in vain, to be divorced by the pope, he was so much offended, that he utterly rejected the papal power, authority and tyranny in England. This was a dreadful blow against the Romish supremacy. But the king soon after procured the dignified and flattering title of Supreme Head of the Church of England. This additional jewel to his crown was conferred upon him, first by the clergy in convocation, then by act of parlia-. ment. Thus, in the year 1534, Henry VIII. having renounced the supremacy of the pope, and having placed himself in the chair of his holiness, at least as far as concerned the English church, did not fail to manifest his usurped power and authority. He did not intend to ease the people of their oppressions, but only change their foreign yoke for domestic fetters, dividing the pope's spoils betwixt himself and his bishops, who cared not for their father at Rome, so long as they enjoyed honours and their patrimony under another head.

* Mr. Fox observes, that though “ this book carried the king's name in the title, it was another who ministred the motion, and framed the style. But whosoever had the labour of the book, the king bad the thanks and the reward."- Acts and Monuments of Martyrs, vol. ii. p. 57.

# It has been said, that the jester whom Henry, according to the custom of the times, retained at court, seeing the king overjoyed, asked the reason ; and when told, that it was because his holiness had conferred upon him this new title, he replied, “ my good Harry, let thee and me defend each other, and let the faith alone to defend itself.” If this was spoken as a serious joke, the fool was undoubtedly the wisest man of the two.

# Burnet's Hist. of Refor. vol. i. p. 19.-King Henry afterwards got this sacred title united to the crown, by act of parliament; and, curious and inconsistent as it may appear, it is retained to this day.--Heylin's Hist. of Pres. p. 235,

Burnet's Hist. of Refor. vol. i. p. 112. 136. 157. # Memoirs of Col. Hutchinson, vol. i. p. 105. Edit. 1810.

On June 9, 1536, assembled the first reformed convocation in England ; in which Lord Cromwell, prime secretary, sat in state above the bishops, as the king's vicegerent in all spiritual matters. On this occasion, Cromwell, by order of the king, declared, “ That it was his majesty's pleasure, that the rites and ceremonies of the church should be reformed by the RULES OF SCRIPTURE, and that nothing should be maintained which did not rest on that authority; for it was absurd, since the scriptures were acknowledged to contain the laws of religion, that recourse should be had to glosses or the decrees of popes, rather than to them.”+ Happy had it been, if the reformers of the church of England had invariably adhered to this sacred principle. Much, however, was done even at this early period. The pious reformers rejoiced to see the holy scriptures professedly made the only standard of faith and Worship, to the exclusion of all human traditions. The immediate worship of images and saints was now renounced, and purgatory declared uncertain. But the corporeal presence in the sacrament, the preservation and reverence of images, with the necessity of auricular confession, were still retained.t The publication of Tindal and Coverdale's Translations of the Bible, greatly promoted the work of reformation; though it soon received a powerful check by the passing of the terrible and bloody act of the Six Articles. By this act, all who spoke against transubstantiation were to be burnt as heretics, and suffer the loss of all their lands and goods; and to defend the communion in both kinds, or the marriage of priests; or, to speak against the necessity of private mass, and auricular confession, was made felony, with the forfeiture of lands and goods. Towards the close of this king's reign, the popish party obtained the ascendancy; the severity of persecution was revived ; and the Romish superstitions greatly prevailed. Till now, these superstitions had never been denominated laudable ceremonies, necessary rites, and godly constitutions. All who refused to observe them, were condemned as traitors against the king. To make the standing of the persecuting prelates more secure, and their severities the more effectual, this was ratified by act of parliament.|| Many excellent persons were, therefore, condemned to the flames : among whom were the famous Mr. Thomas Bilney, # Fuller's Church Hist. b. v. p. 207. + Burnet's Hist. of Refor. vol. i. p. 214. # Ibid. p. 218. Strype's Cranner, p. 72.

Ibid. p. 130.

Mr. Richard Byfield, Mr. John Frith, and Dr. Robert Barnes, all highly celebrated for piety and zeal in the cause of the reformation.*

King Henry was succeeded by his son, EDWARD VI., a prince of most pious memory. Being only nine years and four months old when he came to the crown, he was free from bigotry and superstition, and ready to observe the instructions of Archbishop Cranmer and the Duke of Somerset, by whose aid and influence, he set himself to promote sound religion. Upon his accession, the penal laws against protestants were abolished, the chains of many worthy persons confined in prison were struck off, the prison-doors were set open, and the sufferers released. Others who had fled from the storm, and remained in a state of exile, now with joy returned home. Among the former were old Bishop Latimer and John Rogers ;+ and among the latter, were Hooper, afterwards the famous martyr, and Miles Coverdale, afterwards a celebrated puritan. Men of real worth were esteemed and preferred. Hooper became Bishop of Gloucester, and Coverdale was made Bishop of Exeter. The monuments of idolatry, with the superstitious rites and ceremonies, were commanded to be abolished, and a purer form of worship introduced. Though, during this reign, the reformation made considerable progress, the greatest part of the parochial clergy were in a state of most deplorable ignorance : but to remedy, as far as possible, this evil, the pious reformers composed and published the book of Homilies for their use. The order of public worship was a Liturgy or Book of Common Prayer, established by act of parliament. Though this act did not pass without much opposition, especially from the bishops, some were so enamoured with the book, that they scrupled not to say, " it was compiled by the aid of the Holy Ghost.”'ll

In the year 1550, the altars in most churches were taken away, and convenient tables set up in their places. I “ And as the form of a table,” says Burnet, “ was more likely to turn the people from the superstition of the popish mass, and bring them to the right use of the Lord's supper, Bishop Ridley, in his primary visitation, exhorted the

* Fox's Martyrs, vol. ii. p. 227, 241, 256, 445. + Burnet's Hist. of Refor. vol. ii. p. 25.

Fuller's Church Hist. b. vii. p. 371.

Burnet's Hist, of Refor, vol.ii. p. 25, 27. I MS. Remarks, p. 51.

Ibid. p. 94.

curates and churchwardens in his diocese, to have it in the fashion of a table, decently covered."* This was very congenial to the wishes of many of the pious reformers, who, at this early period, publicly avowed their nonconformity to the ecclesiastical establishment. Among the articles of the above visitation, the bishop inquired, " Whether any of the anabaptists' sect, or others, use any unlawful or private conventicles, wherein they use doctrine, or administration of sacraments, separating themselves from the rest of the church? And whether any minister doth refuse to use the common prayers, or minister the sacraments, in that order and form, as set forth in the Book of Common Prayer ?”+ The disputes about conformity were carried into the pulpits; and whilst some warmly preached against all innovations, others as warmly preached against all the superstitions and corruptions of the old Romish church; so that the court prohibited all preaching, except by persons licensed by the King or the Archbishop of Canterbury.

In the convocation of 1552, forty-two Articles of Religion were agreed upon by the bishops and clergy, to which subscription was required of all ecclesiastical persons, who should officiate or enjoy any benefice in the church. And all who should refuse, were to be excluded from all ecclesiastical preferment. This appears to be the first time that subscription to the articles was enjoined. Here the reformation under King Edward made a stand.

During this king's reign, there were numerous debates about the habits, rites and ceremonies ; and many divines of great learning and piety, became zealous advocates for nonconformity. They excepted against the clerical vest, ments, kneeling at the communion, godfathers and their promises and vows in baptism, the superstitious observance of Lent, the oath of canonical obedience, pluralities and nonresidence, with many other things of a similar descrip, tion. At this early period, there was a powerful and very considerable party disaffected to the established liturgy. I Though the reformation had already made considerable progress, its chief promoters were concerned for its further advancement. They aimed at a more perfect work; and manifested their disapprobation of the numerous popish ceremonies and superstitions still retained in the church. King Edward desired that the rites and ceremonies used under poprry, should be purged out of the church, and that the English churches miglit be brought to the AposTOLIC PURITY. Archbishop Cranmer was also very desirous to promote the same;' and he is said to have drawn up a book of prayers incomparably more perfect than that which was then in use; but he was connected with so wicked a clergy and convocation, it could not take place. And the king in his diary laments, that he could not restore the primitive discipline according to his heart's desire, because several of the bishops, some through age, some through ignorance, some on account of their ill name, and some out of love to popery, were opposed to the design. I Bishop Latimer complained of the stop put to the reformation, and urged the necessity of reviving the primitive discipline. The professors of our two universities, Peter Martyr and Martin Bucer, both opposed the use of the clerical vestments. To Martyr the vestments were offensive, and he would not wear them. 66 When I was at Oxford," says he, “ I would never use those white garments in the choir ; 'and I was satisfied in what I did.” He styled theon mere relics of popery. Bucer giving his advice, said, “ That as those garments had been abused to superstition, and were likely to become the subject of contention, they ought to be taken away by law; and ecclesiastical discipline, and a more thorough reformation, set up. He disapproved of godtathers answering in the child's name. Ile recommended that pluralities and nonresidences might be abolished; and that bishops might not be concerned in secular affairs, but take care of their dioceses, and govern them by the advice of their presbyters.” The pious king. was so much pleased with this advice, that " he set himself to write upon a further reformation, and the necessity of church discipline. "|| Bucer was displeased with various corruptions in the liturgy. “ It cannot be expressed, how bitterly he bewailed, that, when the gospel began to spread in England, a greater regard was not had to discipline and purity of rites, in constituting the

* Burnet's Hist. of Refor. vol. ii. p. 158.

Sparrow's Collection, p. 36.
Burnet's Hist. of Refor. vol. iji. p. 195.

Sparrow's Collection, p. 39.--Strype's Eccl. Mem. vol. ii. p. 420. || Ms. Remarks, p. 51. I Fuller's Church Hist, b, vii. p. 426,

* Neal's Puritans, vol. i. p. 73.--Strype's Cranmer, p. 299. + Troubles at Frankeford, p. 43.

King Edward's Remaius, numb. 2. in Burnet, vol. ii.
Burnet's Hist. of Refor. vol. ii. p. 152.
Ibid. vol. ll. p. 155-157.

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