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body of the Sorbonne, because it formerly petitioned for the burning the Pucelle d'Orleans ;. because it declared Henry Ill. to have loft his right to the throne, and because it excommunicated and proscribed the illustrious Henry IV. We fhould not certainly think of profecuting the other public bodies of the nation, who committed the like excesses in those times of error and, madness; it would not only be very unjust, but
; as ridiculous as if we were to oblige all the inhabitants of Marseilles to undergo a course of physic, because they had the plague in 1720.
Should we at prefent go and fack Rome, as the troops of Charles the Fifth did, becaufe pope Sixtus the Fifth, in the year 1585, granted a nine years indulgence to all Frenchmen who would take up arms against their fovereign? No, furely it is enough, if we prevent the court of Rome from ever being guilty of such excel ses for the future.
The rage infpired by a spirit of controversy, and the abuse made of the Christian religion from want of properly understanding it, has occafioned as much bloodshed, and produced as many calamities in Germany, England, and
even in Holland, as in France; and yet, at present, the difference in religion occasions no difturbances in those countries : but the Jew, the Catholic, the Lutheran, the Calvinist, the Anabaptist, the Socinian, the Moravian, and a multitude of other sects, live in brotherly harmony together, and contribute equally to the good of society.
In Holland, they no longer fear that the difputations of a Gomar concerning predestination, should bring the head of a grand penfionary to the block: nor in London, that the quarrels between the Presbyterians and the Episcopals about a form of prayer and a sürplice, fhould again fpill the blood of their-kings upon
• Francis Gomar was a protestant divine ; he maintained, in contradiction to Arminius his colleague, that God has, from all eternity, predefti. nated the greatest part of mankind to burn in everlafting flames : this infernal doctrine was supported in the manner most suitable to it, by persecu. tion. The grand pensionary Barneveldt, who was of the
party which opposed Gomar, was beheaded on the 13th of May, 1619, at the age of seventy-two, for having (faith his sentence) used bis uttermol endeavours 10 vex the church of God.
a scaffold t. Ireland, now populous and rich, will not any more behold its catholic inhabitants
† A pompous writer, in his apology for the re
t. vocation of the edict of Nantes, speaking of England, has these words : “ These were the natural “ fruits of a false religion; there remained only
one to be brought to perfection, which these “ islanders, juftly the contempt of all nations, have “ cherished, and adopted to themselves.” Certairly this author has been a little unfortunate in churing his time for representing the English as a pea ple despicable and despised by all the world : for surely, when a nation gives the most fignal proofs of its bravery and generosity, and when its victorious ensigns wave in the four parts of the world, no great credit is to be given to the writer who shall represent it as contemptible and contemned. But we must observe, that it is in a chapter in favour of persecution, that we meet with this extraordinary passage; and none but such who preach up persecution can write thus. This detestable book, which seems the work of a madman, composed by a person who has no ecclefiaftical cure; for what real pastor would write in such a manner? The acthor has even carried his enthus fiaftic fury to such a length, as to justify the massacree of St. Bartholomew. It might be suppofed that a production full of such shocking paradoxes,
facrificing, as an acceptable offering, the lives of their protestant brethren, by burying them alive, hanging up mothers upon gibbers, and tying their daughters. round their neck to see them expire together; ripping up women with child, taking the half-formed infant's from ine womb, and throwing them to swine or dogs to be devoured; putting a dagger into the hands of their manacled prisoners, and forcing them to plunge it into the breasts of their fathers, their mothers, their wives, of children, thereby hoping to make them guilty of parricide, and damn their fouls while they destroyed their bodies: all which we find related by Rapin, who served as an officer in the English service in Ireland, and who lived very near the time of those transactions, and confirmed by most of the English historians. No! such cruel ies, as they were never to be paralleled, so they doubtless will never be imitated. Philosophy, the sister of Religion, has herself snatched the poignard from the hands of Superftition, so long bathed in blood; and the human understanding,
would be in the wands of almost every one, were it only on account of its fingularity, and yet it seems to be hardly known.
recovered from its delirium, ftands amazed at the shocking brutalities into which it has been hurried by enthusiasm.
We ourselves know, that in France there is a rich and populous province, where the proteftant religion prevails much more than that of the church of Rome. The university of Alo face consists almost entirely of Lutherans, and they are likewise in possession of moft of the civil posts in that province ; and yet the public peace has never once been disturbed by any quarrels about religion, fince that province has belonged to our kings. And what is the reafon? Because no one is per secuted there on account of their religion. Seek not to lay a restraint upon the mind, and you may always be sure that the mind will be yours.
I do not mean by this to infinuate, that those who are of a different faith to the prince under, whose government they live, should have an equal share in the places of profits and honour, with those who are of the established religion of the state. In England, the Roman catholics, who are in general looked upon to be friends to the Pretender, are excluded from all civil employs, and are even double taxed; but then,