Imágenes de páginas
PDF
EPUB

of his ministerial labours. Being, however, much importuned to publish this Exposition, though his modesty led him to decline doing this himself, yet he transcribed the work out of a short-hand peculiar to-himself, and entrusted it, finished for publication, to one of his parishioners, well known to the editor as a person of integrity, to be disposed of after the author's death.

The same year, 1692, appeared, in 1 vol. 4t0., the EXPOSITION OF THE LORD's Prayer, with a CatechISTICAL EXPLICATION THEREOF, and the two SERMONS ON THE USE OF THE HOLY SCRIPTURES and on PROVIDENCE. The Imprimatur to this volume is dated April 7, 1692. The editors of this and the subsequent works of the Bishop are not known: but it is asserted in the preface to this volume, (See vol. i., of this edition, p. 49) that the piece was transcribed by the author; and by him deposited in the hands of a minister whom he could trust, to be made public after his decease: and the editor argues justly, that “ a further confirmation that his Lordship intended it should be made public, appears by his so often quoting this his Discourse on the Lord's Prayer in his Treatise on the Commandments; which could not be seen or read by otliers, but by the printing of it.” This volume was reprinted in 8vo. 1698.

A volume of DISCOURSES OR SERMONS ON SEVERAL SCRIPTURES had appeared in 1691, in 8vo. A second followed, in 1693; a third, in 1694 ; and a fourth, in 1696. The Discourses on the Almost CHRISTIAN and on MortificaTION seem to have been printed separately. .

In 1701, all these pieces were collected and published in a folio volume: the editor of which, after mentioning the three pieces which were printed during the Bishop's life, observes :-" Though it cannot be expected that what is posthumous should, in every sentence and passage thereof, be as exact and accurate as if the author had put his last hand to it, yet these discourses are written in a style and with an exactness peculiar to his Lordship;

which, by comparing them with what he published himself, beyond all controversy denote them to be his own. But, for farther satisfaction that the world is not imposed upon, nor any injustice done to the author's memory, by the printing of these discourses; it may not only be said that there are many persons yet alive who with great delight and benefit heard him preach all the sermons that have been published under his Lordship's name, and who, if occasion be, can and will attest that they are genuine: but the reader is hereby assured that the greatest part of them were by his permission, at the desire and for the sake of some particular friends, transcribed from his own manuscripts, and corrected by him. The rest were taken from his mouth by the pen of a ready writer, with great exactness : insomuch, that they being committed to his Lordship’s review after they were transcribed, he could not but commend the writer's dexterity; and permitted him to keep them upon this condition (which we may presume were the terms upon which he ever granted a copy of any of his discourses) That nothing might be printed while he lived. Which expression, by the way, may be interpreted a tacit allowance for the printing of them after he was dead. Now having, I hope, satisfied the reader that these discourses are his, whose name they bear, there needs nothing, in this place, to be said in commendation of them: their own excellency and eloquence will praise them best. Let that suffice then to recommend them to his serious perusal, which is said concerning another great man's works *, viz. That they are animated throughout with such a genuine spirit of true piety and goodness, that surely he must be either a perfectly good or a prodigiously bad man, that reads them over without being the better for them.”

.* Preface to Dr. Barrow, by Archbp. Tillotson.

[ocr errors]
[graphic]

In 1712, were published separately, in 8vo. three more volumes, with the following titles : ad 56 The DOCTRINE Of The Two COVENANTS: wherein

the Nature of Original Sin is at large explained ; St. Paul and St. James reconciled, in the great article of Justification: with a DiscoURSE OF GLORIFYING GOD IN HIS ATTRIBUTES.'

pogo « The DOCTRINE OF THE Two SACRAMENTS: the

Way of SalvatION: the Pleasantness of that
Way and BEAUTY OF HOLINESS : of the Virtues
WHICH ADORN IT: the Prejudice it receives from
DISORDERLY WALKERS, AND THE-Duty OF WITH-
DRAWING FROM SUCH. To which is subjoined, A
SERMON AGAINST REBELLION : with an APPENDIX,
containing some passages contained in that part
of the Author's Works published in Folio."

w the G rea $ DEATH DISARMED OF ITS STING; from Several Con

siderations. To which is added, A DISCOURSE OF REDEMPTION FROM THE CURSE OF THE LAW BY Jesus Christ; by way of Supplement to p. 231.

of that part of his Works printed in Folio." 7 These three volumes are said, in their respective titlepages, to be published from the Author's Original MSS. but no preface is prefixed to any of them.

The Bishop's writings have derived but little advantage from editorial skill and diligence. The pieces which were published or prepared by himself, and those cone tained in the three octavo volumes printed in 1712, are well published; but those which first appeared in the four volumes of Discourses, from 1691 to 1696, being chiefly taken from his lips while preaching or found among his papers just as he had used them in the pulpit, and then brought forward with little or no revision, are

shamefully inaccurate. The editor of the Folio has faithfully copied most of the errors of the preceding editions. The “ Almost Christian,” in particular, is left by him absolutely unintelligible in some places. The Sermon on the “ Dreadfulness of God's Wrath,” is the only piece in which I have observed much variation between the folio and the preceding editions.

At p. 273 of vol. iv. the reader will find some notice of the “ Appendix" attached to the second octayo of 1712. In addition to what is there said, I would remark that the Third Head of the Discourse on Conscience is given again in the Appendix as a Fourth Head ; inadvertently, as it should seem ; being probably found in that state among the Bishop's papers, and the editor not being aware that it had been printed as the Third Head: there are some variations between them, but none of importance: I have, however, generally adopted the readings of the Appendix, as most accurate.

J. P.

ACCOUNT

OF THE

PRESENT EDITION.

All the above mentioned pieces are now collected, for the first time; and are ARRANGED in that order which appeared to me most suitable on the whole, without much deference to the period of their respective publi. cation.

In REVISING the works of Bishop Hopkins, I have been under the necessity of taking greater liberties than with those of Bishop Hall.

The Orthog,aphy needed but little alteration; the language having, in our author's days, acquired fixed principles on this point.

This not being the case with the Punctuation, that has been conformed to the best rules. In some instances,

the sense was obscured or misrepresented. i The Style of our author, in most of his pieces, is of

that free and flowing kind, which a writer of his natural eloquence would be likely, to carry into the pulpit. Yet, while it possesses the charm of ease and nature, it partakes very largely of the inaccuracies too often incident to such a style. These inaccuracies, though they prevail chiefly in the Four volumes of Discourses and are thence transferred into the Folio, yet are not uncommon even in those pieces which he hiniself published, or seems to have left prepared for publication; as may be seen in the VANITY OF the World and the EXPOSITION OF THE LORD's PRAYER ; which two treatises are

TION OF THE

« AnteriorContinuar »