« EelmineJätka »
BISHOP KEN'S “CHRISTIAN YEAR.”
borders, is a fitting memorial of one of the last worthies of the English
Church whose name is likely to be added at fome future day to the Kalen.
dar of her Saints. « . There is always thought in the good Bishop's lines;
and besides their unfailing devoutness, they often have a beauty of their
own which cultivated readers will not fail to appreciate. One of the best
examples of this quiet grace will be found in the paraphrase of the Beati.
titudes given under the Fifteenth Sunday after Trinity. He is not a poet
from whom we can select a separate passage and hold it up as a good ex-
ample of his best style, because the train of meditation is so closely carried
on, and its diffufeness is so great that a brief quotation would give no more
idea of his real merits than a single brick suggests of the plan of the build-
ing whence it is taken. We must rather, then, refer our readers to the
book itself, which deserves their attention for various reasons, literary and
The Church News.
“The publication of these poems of Bishop Ken is exceedingly oppor-
tune. His writings possess at the present time a value and importance
greater than they have ever yet poflefled, for his loyalty to the Church of
England cannot be questioned by the most captious. He was one of the
seven bishops committed to the Tower by King James the Second for re-
fusing to read “The Declaration.' And he was most active in his endea-
vours to combat the design of the same monarch to establish the Roman
Church in England. Added to this, he was an immediate fucceffor of
those who reconstructed the Book of Common Prayer in 1662, and cannot
but have been acquainted with what they understood to be included and
expressed by those formularies. . . . Bishop Ken's Hymns have been used
by those even who are outside the pale of the Church. Two at least, the
Morning and Evening Hymns, have been for a century past included with
Tate and Brady in the same cover with our Prayer Books. The present
publication is the handsomest gift book of the season, and is suitable also as
a marriage or confirmation gift book ; each page is ornamented by a very
elegant arabesque woodcut border, in the style of Geoffrey Tory."
“We therefore have great pleasure in commending to our readers' no-
tice the handsome edition of this first . Christian Year,' just published, as a
suitable marriage or confirmation gift-book, by Mr. Pickering, to whose
father we owe to many valuable reprints. The hymns, or poems, as some
of them would be more properly styled, are full of that devotion to a holy
life which was one of the most striking features in the Bishop's character,
while his words on the many important subjects on which he treats will be
received with still deeper intereft at the present time when it is remembered
that he was one of the seven bishops who refused to read the famous . De-
claration of James II.
“The book is very handsomely printed, each page having a border in
BISHOP KEN'S “CHRISTIAN YEAR."
the style of Geoffrey Tory; while the benefit of those readers who merely wish for the text without the ornament, a smaller and cheaper edition has been issued. The language, as might be expected, is quaint, but this only makes it more attractive, and we are confident that all who possess the works of George Herbert and John Keble will be glad to add to their store the 'Christian Year' of Bishop Ken.”
The Churchman. “It is well worthy to be one of the devotional books of every churchman—and we would engage that any one who adds it to his or her tray of such books, will find after a year or so, that it has won a claim to be very near and dear as a companion through the Christian seasons."
The Birmingham Journal. “Not only his immortal Morning and Evening Hymns, but all the others so sweetly associated with the Church seasons of the year, and which suggested to Keble his universally popular Christian Year,' are carefully and tastefully reproduced. To some modern tastes, spoiled by the smooth, effeminate lines of modern days, some of the good Bishop's verses may seem harth and rude; but as examples of masculine English, of lofty Christian feeling, of great poetic power, these hymns of Bishop Ken well deserve all praise."... Mr. Pickering, the publisher, has shown himself worthy of the Aldine laurels which his father won, by producing a ne glected Church classic in so appropriate and admirable a form."
The late John KEBLE on Ken's Poetical Works
in the “ Quarterly Review." “ The simple and touching devoutness of many of Bishop Ken's lyrical effufions has been unregarded. . . . . Whoever in earnest loves his three well-known hymns, and knows how to value such unaffected strains of poetical devotion, will find his account in turning over his four volumes, half narrative and half lyric, and all avowedly on sacred subjects. .. All breathing such an angelic spirit, interspersed with such pure and bright touches of poetry, that such a reader as we have supposed will scarcely find in his heart to criticise them.
“We shall hardly find, in all ecclefiaftical history, a greener spot than the later years of this courageous and affectionate pastor ; persecuted alternately by both parties, and driven from his station in his declining age, yet singing on, with unabated cheerfulness, to the last.”
H. SWEET, 3, CHANCERY LANE, FLEET STREET,
Law Bookseller and Publisher :
HODGES, SMITH AND CO., GRAFTON STREET, DUBLIN.