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RELATING TO THE
FROM THEIR RISE
TO THE RESTORATION OF THE MONARCHY,
A. D. MDC LX.
BY BENJAMIN HANBURY.
* WHERE EACH ORDINARY CONGREGATION GIVETH THEIR FREE CONSENT IN THEIR
HENRY JACOB, 1612.
THE CONGREGATIONAL UNION OF ENGLAND AND WALES.
FISHER, SON, & CO., NEWGATE STREET.
COMMITTEE OF THE CONGREGATIONAL UNION.
The Comınittee of the CONGREGATIONAL UNION of England and Wales have zealously promoted the publication of these Historical Memorials of the Independent Churches, in which the writings of the Early Witnesses for the distinctive polity of our denomination, are rescued from present neglect and future oblivion. In affording encouragement and aid to this interesting but laborious Work, the Committee have been influenced solely by ardent zeal for those great principles, which the fathers of our denomination deduced with so much care from the Holy Scriptures ; and which cannot be more effectually recommended than by the erudition, the ability, and the piety conspicuous in the works of these primitive confessors of the doctrine and the discipline still cherished by the Congregational body.
The undivided responsibility of authorship has rested upon Mr. Hanbury; and whatever honour is due to the fidelity, patience, and skill with which the materials have been collected and arranged, is exclusively his own. The Committee feel assured that no one can be better qualified than their honoured coadjutor, for such an undertaking, by extent of research, interest in the subject, and scrupulous accuracy in even the minutest details. They hope his labours in this work, greater than can be appreciated by those who are unacquainted with such pursuits, will meet with extensive approval and encouragement among the pastors and churches of the denomination. Nor can the Committee omit to bespeak the same favour on behalf of their own solicitude in this, as in many other instances, to promote whatever may advance the enlightened attachment of our entire community to principles derived from the New Testament; handed down by our fathers with the seals of martyrdom and suffering ; and dear to us, as conservative of the still higher interests of saving truth, godly discipline, christian liberty, and spiritual worship.
With no inconsiderable emotion, the author sends forth this volume. Sensible of the responsibility inseparable from such a production, and finding how much more difficult it is than he had contemplated, to achieve the design which he had in fervency projected, he expects commendation only for accomplishing what no one else has performed, and is prepared to receive censure even where he may deem it to be least deserved. The project and its execution are entirely his own. Trained to prize Civil Liberty, of all earthly acquisitions the next to Religious Freedom, he renders his homage to the “ FATHER of lights,” and rejoices in having drawn from their long night of repose, treasures inestimable, retaining the charms of pristine freshness; relics of mind and conduct in by-gone ages, and testimonies of superior wisdom, though not always of perfect sobriety.