[Letters and Correspondence—1837]



January 5, 1837.
My book ['Prophetical Office'] is all but finished, but very little has passed through the press. It is no advance on anything I have said, but a systematising, consolidating, supplying premisses, &c. I say nothing, I believe, without the highest authority among our writers; yet it is so strong that everything I have yet said is milk and water to it, and this makes me anxious. It is all the difference between drifting snow and a hard snowball.


Oriel: January 7, 1836.
I want your impression of several things. Routh has been kind enough to accept my offer of dedication, and in a really pleasant way. He said he had allowed very few dedications to him, and mentioned particularly the case of one person who wished to dedicate, and he advised him to address some one who could be a better patron, which the man did; but, said he, 'I will not say so to Mr. Newman, as I am sure he is not looking to get on in life.' Perhaps I think it is so 'pretty' because it is flattering. However, what say you to a dedication of this sort? Study it, and fix your first impression, so as not to report it before you read on to see my reason for it:—

'To Martin F. Routh, D.D., President of Magdalen College, who has been reserved to report to a degenerate age the theology of our Fathers, this volume is [most] respectfully inscribed, with grateful sense of his services towards the Faith, and with the prayer, that what he has witnessed to others may be his own comfort and support, in the day of account.'

Is 'grateful sense' arrogant in me? But what I want you to do is, first, to correct it, next, to weigh this reason. I felt very unwilling to say anything in the Dedication which might (if it be not a bold thing to say) do Routh harm. I mean, I did not wish to flatter, particularly considering he has never been called upon for active services; so I have put at the end something serious and practical. But I want your impression of it.

What do you say to this title?—'Lectures on the Middle Way between Romanism and Popular Protestantism.' {198}

Then, what say you to this motto? Is there a chance of its being taken as arrogant and self-regarding?—'They that shall be of thee shall build the old waste places; thou shalt raise up the foundations of many generations; and thou shalt be called, The repairer of the breach, The restorer of paths to dwell in.' You see it is addressed by Isaiah to the Church,—i.e. the Anglican, by me.

I am very anxious about this book. I cannot conceal from myself that it is neither more nor less than hitting Protestantism a hard blow in the face. I do not say whether the argument is good or not. I need not have the better of it, and yet may hit a blow. Pusey has seen one lecture, and he said, without my speaking, that it would put people out of breath, so that they would not be able to retort; and that before they recover their wind, we must fetch them a second blow. It is curious Froude compared my letter to Arnold to a blow in the stomach; and the Bishop of Winton, the tracts, to shaking the fist in the face.

To my astonishment Rivington has just sent me word that the tract on the Breviary is coming to a second edition.

Rivington had told me the tracts were selling well, but 750 copies of the 'Roman Breviary' since July last is portentous. I am getting into controversy with the 'Christian Observer' in its own pages. I fervently hope I may be able to tease them usque ad necem, insaniam, or something else equally bad.

The flame is kindling at Cambridge—tiny, but true, I hope. The Bishop of Exeter, at the consecration of some churches, has been expanding the end of his charge into sermons in the most marvellous way, and is exciting quite a sensation. They say he has quite thrown off the political ground.

Boone, I see, in the 'British Critic' (end of article on Jebb) goes on making us confessors and martyrs.

Rose, unasked, has made the amende.

I have had more requests to lend my Littlemore Consecration sermon than any ever (I think).

What an egotistical letter this is!—as all mine are.


Oriel: January 16, 1837.
I am putting a little trouble on you; it is about the 'Christian Observer.'

You know, first, they have challenged an answer from us; {199} then I wrote to know if they would put one in from me. In their reply, you know, they express indignation that it should be thought doubtful. I have written my defence. Now Pusey says it is so 'playful and malicious' that they will not put it in. The question is, with what face they can refuse? what face can they put upon it? e.g. 'Mr. Newman has sent us a rambling letter, partly in praise of the tracts, partly against ourselves, which, though of considerable length, is not yet finished, &c. Under these circumstances we decline, &c.' I do not know whether they can get out of the scrape, but I wish to provide for the chance as follows.

You know Hatchard enough to do as much as this: to call on him with my MS. forthwith, and to beg him, if possible, to give it to Mr. Wilkes, and to ask him (Mr. Wilkes) whether it will be inserted in the next number (not hinting the chance of rejection). 'If not, Mr. Newman wants it back,' and that you will call for the answer and MS. on a day to be fixed. Thus I shall be secure from an impertinent representation of its contents in a Notice to Correspondents. If you see any absurdity in this manœuvre do not execute it. [N.B.—Mr. Wilkes acted far more cleverly than to misrepresent my letter without inserting it, as I feared. What he did was to insert it, but to append a running comment of his own, which occupied nearly the whole page of letterpress, leaving me a streamlet of text along the top of the page. The consequence was that, whether readers studied his comment or no, they could not properly read or understand my defence. The letter was afterwards reprinted as one of the tracts in Volume IV. under the title of 'A Letter to a Magazine.' May 15, 1862.]

P.S. Do you observe you are α Lyrĉ? [that is, in the 'Lyra Apostolica.' The allusion is, to our stargazing, atop of Trinity Chapel Tower, with Ogle, when Bowden and I were undergraduates, Ogle and Bowden used to be great about Alpha Lyrĉ.] [Note 1] {200}


Oriel: January 19, 1837.
 … Tell Miss M. that I fear I must decline the place in her poetical collection. I never can write except in a season of idleness. When I have been doing nothing awhile, poems spring up as weeds in fallow fields.

I have been reading 'Emma.' Everything Miss Austen writes is clever, but I desiderate something. There is a want of body to the story. The action is frittered away in over-little things. There are some beautiful things in it. Emma herself is the most interesting to me of all her heroines. I feel kind to her whenever I think of her. But Miss Austen has no romance—none at all. What vile creatures her parsons are! she has not a dream of the high Catholic [ethos]. That other woman, Fairfax, is a dolt—but I like Emma.' [Note 2]

I have nearly finished Southey's 'Wesley,' which is a very superficial concern indeed: interesting of course. He does not treat it historically in its connexion with the age, and he cannot treat it theologically, if he would ... I do not like Wesley—putting aside his exceeding self-confidence, he seems to me to have a black self-will, a bitterness of religious passion, which is very unamiable. Whitfield seems far better.

In the 'Chronological Notes' of this date there occurs the following entry:

February 3, 1837.—Had men to tea the first time. This was the beginning of my weekly soirées, which went on till the affair of No. 90.

James Mozley, writing to a sister, speaks of these soirées as new things: {201}

February 21, 1837.
Newman gives a tea-party now every Monday evening, in term. He has just started the thing. Last night went off very well—about eight or nine men. Conversation flowing continuously, and every one at his ease. Newman can manage a thing of this kind better than Pusey ... We talked on a variety of subjects [Note 3].

Perhaps the secret of Mr. Newman 'managing these things well' was that the host liked his guests; and allowed it to be seen, as occasion offered, that he expected great things from them. In pathetic words he has in later years written of the human heart, when it puts forth its first leaves and opens and rejoices in its 'springtide' of natural virtue. 'It blooms in the young like some rich flower so delicate, so fragrant, and so dazzling. Generosity and lightness of heart and amiableness; {202} the confiding spirit, the gentle temper, the elastic cheerfulness, the open hand, the pure affection, the noble aspiration, the heroic resolve, the romantic pursuit, the love in which self has no part—are not these beautiful?' [Note 4]

It must be said that if Mr. Newman expected great things from his friends, young and thus endowed, he always thought them capable of performing them. The 'heroic' was a sort of natural element with him—his presence inspired a sense of greatness in his friends, a sense of his greatness and the greatness of companionship with him.

Greatness is a strong, bold word to use, but certainly there was a sense of this quality—very rare in most experiences—in those who came even casually in contact with Mr. Newman. 'I experienced it,' writes a lady, looking back, 'when T. and I were spending an evening—or rather some part of it—in Mr. Newman's rooms in Oriel. In a few words spoken without any effort, as if only the outcome of his habitual train of thought, he took one out of the world one lived in, into another and a higher region.' It was partly the simplicity of his manner and words, an absence of the didactic tone—which implies putting the mind consciously into a certain frame—that gave this impression.

Bishop Wilberforce, in his early days, writing of a visit to Oxford, in 1836, gives his impression, after some long conversations with Newman:

There was a great deal that very much delighted me in my visit, especially some very long conversations with Newman upon several of the most mysterious parts of the Christian Revelation, the Trinity, &c., as well as upon some of the greatest practical difficulties to faith arising from the present torn state of Christendom; and it was really most sublime, as an exhibition of human intellect, when in parts of our discussions Newman kindled and poured forth a sort of magisterial announcement in which Scripture, Christian antiquity deeply studied and thoroughly imbibed, humility, veneration, love of truth, and the highest glow of poetical feeling, all impressed their own pictures on his conversation [Note 5]. {203}


Oriel: February 26, 1837.
You are very kind in your good wishes from year to year, and though I have been remiss in words, it is not as if I did not think of you. I hope to have a good account of your health next time you write. Johnson gave me but a poor one.

At present I suppose my beginning weekly communion will be a hindrance to my coming to town after Easter [Note 6].


Oriel: March 2, 1837.
The Act for the extinction of Sodor and Man had a flaw in it. We were very desirous you should send us a petition for this place, thinking you excel in that line more than we do. If S. Wilberforce is at home, will you send him a line or a petition? Do send a strong one. I will sign it with half a dozen even ...

They say the Dean of Lichfield is to have the vacant see. One report was that the Bishop of Oxford was to go there. If so the congé d'élire will fall foul of Pusey. Only fancy our being under Hampden. They say the Bishop of Salisbury has died rich. The Duke has written to Hampden to resign the Hall [St. Mary], as being non-resident.

As has been said, the tracts issued singly had been at once a difficulty and an expense. No leading publisher would, or indeed could, undertake them; but collected and published, in volumes they had a rapid sale.


March 16, 1837.
You know, I suppose, the third volume of tracts has been some time out of print. This in a month or two. There is no doubt Mr. Wilkes's froth and fury arises from witnessing the spread of Apostolical opinions. I am constantly having {204} letters of inquiry from strangers. The Cathedral article in the 'Quarterly,' I am told, is considered the greatest triumph of Apostolicism. When the 'Quarterly' turns Apostolical, Birnam Wood may well begin marching. The amusing thing is that the poor 'Christian Observer' is obliged to puff our munificence, meekness, &c.; to compare us to Fénelon, &c. He will do more good in this way than harm by his railing; for no one who is 'peculiarly' disposed but thinks as bad of our views as he can already.

We are getting up addresses to the Archbishop, of congratulation for his spirit; of intercession to Parliament on behalf of the Isle of Man, &c.; but I suppose not much will come of them. In Devonshire they are addressing the King on the ground of his Coronation Oath. I cannot say I wish the Ministers out. Even as to preferments they will do pretty much the same as the Conservatives. Denison was just the man [E. Denison of Merton, just then made Bishop of Salisbury], except as being too young to be promoted by Sir R. Peel, and I find the Conservatives in London praise generally the ecclesiastical appointments of this Ministry. [N.B. It was said at this time that Lord Melbourne (the Premier) declared that 'the Bishops died to spite him,' he was so hard up for Liberal candidates for promotion. It was just after the Hampden matter too. When the see of Salisbury was vacant, it was said at the time (1837) that Mr. Sotheron Estcourt (Conservative) went to Sir C. Wood (Whig and in the Ministry), both Oriel men, and said, Why not make E. Denison (a third Oriel man and their contemporary) the new Bishop? and that Lord Melbourne seized and acted upon their suggestion.—J. H. N. May 15, 1862]. Even if Sir Robert Peel extravagated into better men at any time, what would be his most ambitious ascent? To Rose, I suppose, who, with his ten thousand excellences, yet has not the firmness for these times. What a good appointment Oakeley's is to the Whitehall preachership! You will have very elegant and interesting and very bold and apostolical sermons from him.


Oriel: March 31, 1837.
Robert Williams has, I suppose, rent you from the Bishop of Sodor and Man a milk-and-water petition which I suspect {205} here will get no signatures at all. Without conciliating the many it will dishearten the few ...

I am pleased at your liking the book ['Prophetical Office'] yet if it conciliates some it will frighten others, I fear. At least I am not sanguine. I am glad to hear it is selling.

If I were to say what I really feel, I should say plainly that no greater benefit could, in my opinion, be granted to the Church than the publication of sermons from you, and that on account of their matter, not only of the authority of your name. I am so glad you are thinking of Irenĉus.


Oriel: April 12, 1837.
As to my breaking off the correspondence with the 'Christian Observer,' I do not see how I could continue it after they spoke about pounds, shillings, and pence. So I wrote to tell the Editor so.

My present notion is to publish what will almost be a book on Justification, and perhaps in the Preface to allude to the 'Christian Observer.' [N.B. As my Lectures on the Prophetical Office of the Church rose out of my correspondence with the Abbé Jager, so those on Justification rose out of my controversy with the 'Christian Observer.'] Or if the Editor does not publish the rest of my letter, which I wish, then I would publish it with such alterations as are necessary.

The translation of the 'Confessions of St. Austin' are intended to appear in August, the 'Cyril. Hieros.' or a volume of Chrysostom in October, and thenceforth it will proceed, we trust, quarterly.


April 14, 1837.
The 'Christian Observer' has received the report of your giving the 5,000l. Pusey says, in case you think it worth while to notice it, keep this in view, that every denial tends negatively to fix it on the right person. Such gross indelicacy, though they mean it as praise, arises, as he says, from their thinking it no use doing good unless it is talked about. He says that, having given up the notion of heavenly reward as self-righteousness, they take to earthly. {206}

That dedication to Routh was quite on my mind for a while, and made me very anxious. I felt the chance of what you have thought, beforehand, and earnestly deprecated it. Those I showed it to entirely approved of it. Pusey thought it just what it should be. I should have sent it to you had there been time. I do not, you see, defend it—I mean I take my own anxiety, not as a proof of caution, but as a foreboding.

It is a comfort to think that when I am out of health you would let me come to Hursley for a while. But I rejoice to say I am better than I have been for years.

 … Woodgate is Bampton Lecturer, which is a good thing.

The following letter to his sister is given from Mr. Newman's copy of the original, taken at a later date, when he was engaged in the task of looking through his general and family correspondence:


St. Mark's [April 25], 1837.
What you say about my book ['Prophetical Office'] is very gratifying. I hear the same in various other quarters, and it is selling very well. It only shows how deep the absurd notion was in men's minds that I was a Papist; and now they are agreeably surprised. Thus I gain, as commonly happens in the long run, by being misrepresented, thanks to 'Record' & Co. &c. ... I call the notion of my being a Papist absurd, for it argues an utter ignorance of theology. We have all fallen back from the time of the Restoration in a wonderful way. Any one who knew anything of theology would not have confounded me with the Papists; and if he gave me any credit for knowledge of theology, or for clear-headedness, he would not have thought me in danger of becoming one. True it is, every one who by his own wit had gone as far as I from popular Protestantism, or who had been taught from without, not being up to the differences of things, and trained to discrimination, might have been in danger of going further; but no one who either had learned his doctrine historically or had tolerable clearness of head could be in more danger than in confusing the sun and moon.

However, I frankly own that if, in some important points, our Anglican [ethos]  differs from Popery, in others it is like it, {207} and on the whole far more like it than like Protestantism. So one must expect a revival of the slander or misapprehension in some shape or other. And we shall never be free from it, of course.


May 3, 1837.
I began weekly communion at Easter, and have found the church very well attended. I have it at seven in the morning. Last Sunday I had thirty-six communicants. In the course of four Sundays the alms have amounted to between 19l. and 20l. I divide them between the Diocesan Fund for increasing small livings, and the new London Clergy Aid Society.


Oriel College: June 1, 1837.
Your letter of this morning has made me very sad indeed. It was exceedingly kind of you to say what you have, and I feel it very much. Ever since I asked you what I did so abruptly, when you were here, not knowing how matters stood, I have borne your sister continually in mind, and was anxious to hear how things were. I am not certain you do not anticipate what is still future hastily, but I know I should just do the same in your case. If it is to turn out as you forebode, it is only a fresh instance of what I suppose one must make up one's mind to think, and what is consoling to think, that those who are early taken away are the fittest to be taken, and that it is a privilege so to be taken, and they are in their proper place when taken. Surely God would not separate from us such, except it were best both for them and for us, and that those who are taken away are such as are most acceptable to Him seems proved by what we see; for scarcely do you hear of some especial instance of religious excellence, but you have also cause of apprehension how long such a one is to continue here. I suppose one ought to take it as the rule. We pray daily 'Thy kingdom come'—if we understand our words, we mean it as a privilege to leave the world, and we must not wonder that God grants the privilege to some of those who pray for it. It would be rather wonderful if He did not. When we use the Lord's prayer, we pray not only for our eventual regathering, but our dispersion in the interval. {208} The more we live in the world that is not seen, the more shall we feel that the removal of friends into that unseen world is a bringing them near to us, not a separation. I really do not think this fancifulness. I think it attainable—just as our Saviour's going brought Him nearer, though invisibly, in the Spirit.

You do not say anything about your father and mother. May they, and your sisters, and yourself, and all of you be supported under whatever is to happen, is the earnest and anxious prayer of
Your very affectionate, J. H. N.

The date of the following letter, which was found amongst Mrs. John Mozley's papers, seems to show that she had written to her brother, with a view to the approaching confirmation of her husband's youngest sister.


Oriel College: June 4, 1837.
I wish I could write you a satisfactory letter on the subject of Confirmation. As to books, I will mention something before I conclude; as to sermons, I have none. I shall be writing some soon, perhaps, as a Confirmation is approaching. I will say what strikes me, but it will be difficult to come to the point in a page or two, and I am but partially informed on the subject.

I doubt whether one should look to the service for the doctrine of the Church about Confirmation, though it might be there. Prayers are not sermons, except accidentally. The Puritans, &c., wished so to make them; they looked upon sacraments chiefly as sermons, and thought their grace lay in their kindling impressions in the mind! hence they generally started with a long preachment: in the extreme Protestant (Continental) baptismal services, that is, you have a long exhortation. In the same spirit Bucer, in King Edward's Second Book, prefixed the Exhortation at the beginning of the daily service, which still forms part of the service. In the primitive way, the worshipper did not think of himself—he came to God—God's house and altar were the sermon which addressed him and roused him. His Sacraments were the objects of his regards. Words were unnecessary. Hence in Ordination the laying on of hands is the whole. There are no {209} words necessary. Accordingly in our service for the consecration of bishops, the words used in the act of consecrating are not explanatory—the word ' bishop' is used, but there is no definition of the office, any more than the word 'confirmation' in the Confirmation service. It was an objection of the Romanists to our Consecration service that till the Restoration it did not even contain the word bishop [? I think so]. This is answered by Courayer, who shows that to this day (?) the same form is used in the Church of Rome, or used to be. I am not sure of my entire accuracy here, but am right in the outline. Hence in our Confirmation service the Exhortation is an address to those who come, demanding of them what they have to give. They give their word. The bishop imposes his hand—such is the interchange.

The action speaks; it must be a gift. What else is meant by laying hands on? When a person takes an oath, the magistrate, &c., administers and witnesses it. The bishop would do the same, if it were merely a promise on the part of the young. I conceive this is plain to common-sense, even if the bishop said not a word in administering the rite. It must be a peculiar sort of blessing; every prayer is a sort of blessing, but laying on of hands is evidently a special kind of blessing, before we go on to look into antiquity, and to see the meaning of it. Poor people feel this, as often as they wish, as sometimes happens, to come for Confirmation, again and again.

Next, what is the blessing? The prayer tells us as follows: that those who have been regenerated and pardoned are to be 'strengthened' by the Holy Ghost, and to have imparted to them the seven gifts of grace which were poured upon Christ; again, that they are to be 'defended,' made to 'continue' and 'increase'; lastly, that they are to be placed under the protection of God's 'fatherly hand,' and to be led forward in obedience. Here we have an interpretation quite sufficient of the word 'Confirmation'—namely, as a deep fixing, establishing, rooting-in of that grace which was first given in Baptism. These things are prayed for, and just so far as laying on of hands has somewhat of an assurance in it over and above a prayer (in whatever measure more or less), so far are they granted.

In accordance with this the ancient Church seems to have believed as follows: that the Holy Ghost, who is the present Lord and animating Power of the Church, communicated {210} Himself variously to its members; first in Baptism, in another way in Confirmation, in another way in the Holy Eucharist. His first gift or communication is forgiveness, justification, acceptance; and this is the distinguishing gift of Baptism. He is the Spirit of Justification, vid. 1 Cor. vi. 11, 2 Cor. iii. 6-9. This gift He gives complete and whole, and such as is never repeated in this life; but He also gives the beginnings of other gifts, which are more fully given afterwards, viz. his sanctifying influences; and since these are those which are more commonly, even in Scripture, called the Spirit, it follows that in one sense the Spirit is not given or hardly given in Baptism. I would have you look to what Jeremy Taylor says on Baptism (I think in his 'Life of Christ' or 'Holy Living'); and you will find some writers, such as Tertullian, say that Baptism imparts forgiveness, Confirmation the Spirit, which only means that Confirmation seals in their fulness, winds up and consigns, completes the entire round of those sanctifying gifts which are begun, which are given inchoately, in Baptism. If it be said that Confirmation is thus made a sacrament, I answer that it is properly an integral part of the baptismal rite. I do not say of the essence or an essential part of Baptism, but an integral part, just as a hand is an integral part of our body, yet may be amputated without loss of life. And in ancient times it was administered at the time of Baptism, as its ratification on the part of the bishop ...

If it be asked what is the peculiar grace of Confirmation, I answer, it seems, as the Greek name implies, to be a perfecting or man-making. We in it become men in Christ Jesus. The baptismal grace is principally directed towards the abolition of existing guilt, e.g. original sin. The child is, comparatively speaking, incapable of actual sin. The grace of Confirmation is directed to arm the Christian against his three great enemies, which on entering into his field of trial he at once meets. This is alluded to in Keble's poem on Confirmation.

This I know is but a sketch of what might be said. If you have any other questions you want answered, let me know. I know of no familiar book on the subject. Dodsworth has written one which it would be as well you should look at, and Eyre of Salisbury (at Rivington's) another. But I should recommend you to read Jeremy Taylor's work on Confirmation—[Chrisis teleiotike]. Also his remarks on Baptism, in either his 'Holy Living' or 'Life of Christ.' He is a writer {211} essentially untrustworthy—i.e. if some external attraction meets him, he cannot resist it. He is like an iron vessel navigating between loadstone islands. The necessity, for example, of seeming an anti-Papist will draw all his nails out. But, as far as I know, he is correct in these works, and gives a good deal of information. It is too difficult, however, for Elizabeth.


Oriel: June 6, 1837.
 … I believe, but you must have heard it if it is true, that on the Bishop elect of Norwich [Stanley] signifying to the Archbishop his intention of proposing Arnold to preach his Consecration sermon, the Archbishop wrote to him to say he had appointed his Chaplain, Mr. Rose ...

P.S. I have sent up to the Curates' Fund 20l. from our early communion as a specimen of what would be good to do generally.


June 30, 1837.
As to R. H. Froude's 'Remains,' I am sanguine that the volume will take with University men. I have transcribed the 'Private Thoughts,' and am deeply impressed with their attractive character. They are full of instruction and interest, as I think all will feel. I have transcribed them for your imprimatur. If you say 'yes,' and send them to me, I propose to go to press almost immediately.

These 'Thoughts' present a remarkable instance of the temptation to Rationalism self-speculation, &c., subdued. We see his mind only breaking out into more original and beautiful discoveries, from that very repression which at first sight seemed likely to be the utter prohibition to exercise his special powers. He used playfully to say that 'his highest ambition was to be a humdrum,' and by relinquishing the prospect of originality he has but become more original. {212}


July 5, 1837.
I have many things to write about, and hardly know which to begin with.

I send you a number of extracts from Froude's letters to me. It was Isaac Williams's suggestion ... I propose that a selection of letters, such as this, should follow on the 'Private Thoughts,' as displaying his mind. Read them attentively. If you think there is a chance of their doing, I must apply for yours, Keble's, Williams's, and his home letters. Qu. to whom did he write when abroad [in Italy]?

My reasons for this selection are such as the following: 1. to show his mind, his unaffectedness, playfulness, brilliancy, which nothing else would show. His letters approach to conversation, to show his delicate mode of implying, not expressing, sacred thoughts; his utter hatred of pretence and humbug. I have much to say on the danger which (I think) at present besets the Apostolical movement of getting peculiar in externals, i.e., formal, manneristic, &c. Now, Froude disdained all show of religion. In losing him we have lost an important correction. I fear our fasting, &c., may get ostentatious. His letters are a second-best preventative. 2. To make the work interesting, nothing takes so much as these private things. 3. To show the history of the formation of his opinions. Vaughan was observing the other day that we never have the history of men in the most interesting period of their life, from eighteen to twenty-eight or thirty, when they are forming; now this gives Froude's. 4. To show how deliberately and dispassionately he formed his opinions; they were not taken up as mere fancies. This invests them with much consideration. Here his change from Tory to Apostolical is curious. 5. To show the interesting growth of his mind, how indolence was overcome, &c.; to show his love of mathematics, his remarkable struggle against the lassitude of disease, his working to the last. 6. For the intrinsic merit of his remarks.

If you think the notion entertainable, I wish you could put the MS. into the hands of some person who is a good judge, yet more impartial than ourselves, in order to ascertain his impression of it. The difficulty is, he ought to have seen the 'Private Thoughts,' of which it is a continuation, in fact. I {213} thought of Acland, except that he is a fastidious man. What say you to Hope? But I leave it to your judgment.

If you and the other agree in countenancing the notion, then send down the MS. to Keble with an enumeration of the reasons for publishing it which I have given above. You see I have hardly any letters from Barbadoes about the place, and none (of course) from Italy. These, when added, will increase and diversify the interest of the whole.

I propose in the preface to say briefly that 'the author had his own opinions about some of the agents in the ecclesiastical revolution of the sixteenth century, which he was as free to hold as the contrary; that we are not bound to individuals, and that the same liberty by which we are able to speak against Henry VIII. may be extended to our judgment of Cranmer.'

I am going to review Lamennais' work in October. It is most curious.

As to the statutes, I do not suppose any of us will differ in principle, though I have not interchanged a word with any one. We are at liberty to alter our statutes, therefore let us in honorem Dei alter them. But what alterations? As to the sermo latinus, I should consent to that being altered; but even here I think it would be most respectful rather to append the alteration as a sort of perpetual suspension than to obliterate it.

My reason for wishing to keep the original text is, that a statute, though obsolete, often lets one into the spirit of the foundation, and is, therefore, very important for direction even when not literally obeyed. I should like the alterations to be appended; but this is a matter of expedience.

Next, perhaps some persons would go further than I as to what should be repealed. I would not repeal the reading Scripture in Hall. Must I then at once return to it? This is not necessary, though I should like it. It is sometimes put as a dilemma, you must either repeal your statutes or keep them. I deny it; it is a shrewd argument for a lawyer or politician, not for a divine. Any divine must acknowledge that all of us take a most solemn vow of universal obedience in baptism, which yet we neither attempt to keep nor repeal. I mean that the highest obedience is a privilege, and that persons by transgressing lose the privilege, are unworthy of it, and not only do not, but are not allowed to, enjoy it. We are bound to go to church, but a person under an interdict cannot. We {214} are bound to reprove others, but a penitent may not consistently with his fallen state. In like manner we inherit a second best obedience to the statutes; we cannot at will reverse the sins of our forefathers, and retraverse the course of centuries, any more than at will we could repeal the Emancipation Act. We are committed—'go with the men.' It were a privilege to obey the statutes, but our [ethos] is beneath them. We cannot force up our [ethos]; or if this or that person thinks himself equal to certain observances, the majority of fellows may not be. In retaining the statutes, then, not observing them, we are no more breaking our oaths than a statesman breaks his baptismal oath in holding it a duty to make the Church dominant, yet not agitating for the reinforcement of the Test Act.

As to the injunctions of Parliament against the praying for the dead, which you say has virtually repealed a portion of our statutes, I agree with you, and, with my views of the omnipotence of Parliament in such a matter, am quite content to urge with you that nothing more need be done. The Provost will grant enough has been done, and I will allow that not too much; he will say Parliament has done good and no harm. From what you say I suppose you will agree with me in all this. Let me know.

I saw —— for a day last week, and was as grave (yet natural) as a judge the whole time, except for one instant, when, to try —— I suddenly on a pause broke out with a sentence like this, turning round sharp: 'So, ——, you wish, it seems, to change the monarchy into a republic?' (this was not it, but like it). —— shrunk up as if twenty thousand pins had been thrust into him; his flesh goosified, his mouth puckered up, and he looked the picture of astonishment, awe, suspicion, and horror. After this trial I went back to my grave manner, and all was well. Now don't you see that, for his good and comfort, one must put on one's company coat before him? he cannot bear one's shirt-sleeves.

Stanley attends Sacrament in St. Mary's now.

Cholderton is a very nice place to my fancy; the village itself beautiful.

I see the 'Christian Advocate' at Cambridge has written against the Tracts.

Excuse me if I have not courage to read over this frightful scrawl.—Ever yours affectionately,

P.S.—I am told that the 'Christian Observer' has reviewed the 'Lyra,' and in so doing has spoken with interest of Froude as the most spiritual and least bigoted, &c., of the whole set.

Keble wants to raise a sum for the endowment of Otterbourn, and I have promised to raise ten pounds. I wish if you see Acland or R. Williams, or any other wealthy friend, you would ask them from me for one pound towards it.


Oriel: July 16, 1837.
Williams has suggested the publication of extracts from Hurrell's letters. I feared at first they would be too personal as regards others, but then I began to think that, if they could be given, they would be next best to talking with him, and would show him in a light otherwise unattainable. Then there are so many clever things in those he sent me, the first hints of principles, &c., which I and others have pursued, and of which he ought to have the credit. Moreover, we have often said the movement, if anything comes of it, must be enthusiastic. Now here is a man fitted above all others to kindle enthusiasm. I have written to William Froude about it, who caught at the idea, which he said had already struck him. Considering the state of the University, everything which can tell against Hampdenism will be a gain.


Oriel College: July 24, 1837.
 … As to the Translations of the Fathers, there is no reason in the world you should subscribe to them. However, I do not think that any decoction, such as even Hooker's, can take their place. Yet while I say this I am unable to anticipate whether a translation can preserve their spirit. I should not wonder if it turned out that they seemed quite flat and insipid. It seems to me the great use of our library will be to make the clergy read the originals; and it is giving a general impulse in a certain direction. However, others think differently, namely, that they may become popular reading. I do not deny it, and feel I have no means of judging. The event is the only way of deciding the question. {216}

 ... It is remarkable how plans of altering the Liturgy have died away ever since our movement began; we have given our opponents other things to think about. However, the cry may revive any day, yet the suspension of it is a gain ...

We have nothing to hope or fear from Whig or Conservative Governments, or from bishops, or from peers, or from courts, or from other visible power. We must trust our own [ethos]—that is, what is unseen and its unseen Author. I do hope we shall be strengthened to develop in new ways, since the ordinary ways are stopped up.


August 25, 1837.
 ... If any one wished to bring about the repeal of the Prĉmunire, the Bishop of Norwich's sermon is our ally. But I am not for touching any of our forms. If we can but infuse a new spirit into the Church, these will fall off as the case of a chrysalis. Quid leges sine moribus? And in like manner, quid non mores? When there is a spirit it finds out channels, it creates the external tokens and means of energising. On the other hand we are not ripe for a change. My best compliments to Hildebrand.


August 27, 1837.
Thank you for wishing for me at the consecration [of Hursley church?], and I should have much liked it. I think I am very cold and reserved to people, but I cannot ever realise to myself that any one loves me. I believe that is partly the reason, or I dare not realise it.


Oriel: August 31, 1837.
Archdeacon Froude sent up within this last week Hurrell's private journal (1826-1827), of which I did not know the existence before, giving an account of his fastings, &c., and his minute faults and temptations at the time. Also a letter of his mother's, indirectly addressed to him within a year of her {217} death, speaking of his failings and good points. They are more interesting than anything I have seen, except, perhaps, his letters to Keble, which are also come. Does it not seem as if Providence was putting things into our hands for something especial? there is so gradual and unexpected an accumulation. I should be rejoiced at the prospect of your reviewing the volume. I want Rivington to have the volumes purchasable separately; each will have separate interest for a different set of persons—the sermons for parsons, the first volume for young people. You should have the sheets as fast as they come from the press. I doubt whether you know enough at present to begin. These new papers have quite made my head whirl, and have put things quite in a new light.

Your judgment about 'The Kingdom of the Saints' is most valuable: first, because it is the first I have had on the subject, certainly the first deliberate one after a perusal of Scripture; next, because it is a very essential theory in the Anglican system, indeed it is the heart of it. Further, it fits into Froude's theory of Church and State; and lastly, not the least, it is valuable for the sake of the person making it.

I wish Wood would put down on paper where and how he disagrees with me. I see no more than the man in the moon. All I have said is, that the Fathers do appeal in all their controversies to Scripture as a final authority. When this occurs once only it may be an accident. When it occurs again and again uniformly, it does invest Scripture with the character of an exclusive rule of faith. And besides this, they used strong expressions about Scripture. Try if you can master his objection. You told me you thought my lecture satisfactory yourself when you read it. Do you mean that the 'Dublin Review' article floors mine, or is floored? I do not recollect any arguments it uses against our theory of the Rule of Faith. I fancied the article was Dr. Wiseman's, but know no more than you.

I newer have had so much important business on my hands at a time as now: the Library of the Fathers, my book on Justification, some Tracts, and Froude's papers.

Some passages of a letter of sympathy with his friend on a severe domestic loss may be given here, though the whole letter, full of touches of feeling as it is, is of too strictly private a character for insertion. {218}


Oriel: September 25, 1837.
My first feeling on receiving your letter was to think how great a privilege I had lost, by not taking advantage of the leave you gave me some weeks since, to come to Blackheath for a day. But then it struck me that I had not lost it; there are things only allowed one under circumstances, and though, as far as my own gratification went, I would have gone from Oxford on purpose, yet that in many ways would have been outstepping duty and propriety, and so I comfort myself that under things as they were, leave was not given me providentially, though by you.

Also, I felt great relief in your letter from finding, not only that the worst was over, but that it was over so happily.

You have, in every way of viewing her memory, nothing but pleasant thoughts about your sister.

We were celebrating the anniversary of the Consecration at Littlemore the day you lost her, the 22nd. I like such coincidences, there is something very pleasant in them. We had a most delightful day in every way. The weather was most lovely, and the people, out of their own head, ornamented the chapel with flowers. I preached, and Pusey administered the Sacrament. We were asked to have Afternoon Service when Morning Service was over, and complied. The Offertory collection was for a school-room, and we got above 18l. It was a most pleasant day, and all this while your sister was leaving you. Well, if anything which has been done in Oxford, whether in prayer or other way has been useful to her, I hope she will not forget us now.

There is no reason to suppose that the question of vestments or of ritual was ever a prominent one in Mr. Newman's mind; but his critics seem to have expected, and even attributed to him, observances of this character, which the tone of his letters proves had no foundation in fact.


Hursley: October 6, 1837.
Truro people told Keble that they had it from an Oxford man that he (the Oxford man) had gone into Littlemore {219} chapel and found lights burning there, and was told they burn night and day. Daman, our Fellow, was told at Ilfracombe by the clergyman that I wore on my surplice a rich illuminated cross.

I am here for a week to consult with Keble about Froude's papers, which are now in the press and require a good deal of attention. You will, I think, be deeply interested in them. His father has put some into my hands of a most private nature. They are quite new even to Keble, who knew more about him than anyone ... All persons of unhacknied feelings and youthful minds must be taken by them; others will think them romantic, scrupulous, over-refined, &c.

In return for yours I will give you another [ethos] of the Bishop of L. At his table, H. Wilberforce said, in answer to a question, that in case of a demand for marriage without banns or license (according to the new Act) he should consult his Bishop. On which the Bishop of L. [qy. Copleston] said, 'Were I asked I should give no answer; I should say: "You and I must obey the Law, and if we do not choose to obey the Law, we must go out of the Establishment." There is nothing to hope from him. By-the-bye, the Bishop of Lincoln [Kaye] has spoken in favour of the Tracts in a charge. This is capital.

P.S.—I heard the other day of a young man in an office being led to Apostolical views by the 'Record.' Then he bought Pusey's Tracts, and he now lends them about, and has become a propagandist. Hook has converted three Wesleyan preachers.


October 26, 1837.
Sir Robert Inglis has been to the Isle of Man, and tells me the clergy there have subscribed a petition for instead of against the suppression of their see, being tempted by the spoils. The laity are getting up a petition against.


Oriel: November 3, 1837.
Your news about the Bishop of W. is good. In return r present you with two rumours.

One, that the Somerset Low Church party are to get up a {220} petition signed by 2,000 against I know not what; against perhaps all candles, postures and vestments which imagination ever pictured.

Next, that 200 and more of the Winchester clergy are petitioning the Archbishop to call a Provincial Council, to censure the Rev. John Keble for laying waste the Diocese by his sermon on Tradition. Also, that there was a great desire to make the said J. K. commit himself on some point which will set him wrong with the majority. Therefore, bear in your mouth the tongue of the wise, and put a [bous epi glossei].


Oriel College: Nov. 22, 1837.
So the two parties of the aristocracy are to join, and the Church, as distinct from the Establishment, to be quietly dropped. As to our statutes it is a long business. I will get you some papers on the subject. The revision is quite a new question, without precedent since the Laudian code. The Heads [of Houses] wish to bring it into the ordinary business of the University, as their concern; the Convocation, as if sui generis, to judge it by antecedent precedents, i.e. precedent of a revision. Much may be said on both sides, but we give in a protest tomorrow to save our rights and negative the whole; but how it will go I know not, as I hear today the Master of Balliol has been bringing up men.

You know Boone has given up; but this is, I suppose, a secret. [The Editorship of the 'British Critic.']


Oriel College: St. Andrew's Eve, 1837.
Certainly I should like your article soon, and doubt not it will do very well. But I am very sorry to hear about your headaches, and hope you have not been distressing yourself. It is certainly strange that any one like yourself should be so withheld from usefulness, but depend on it there is a reason for it. We all need some sharp bond—though you, one should say, less than others: we see yours; in the case of others the hair-shirt is hidden. So much for moralising.

Your news about your law plans quite delighted me. We talk (entre nous) of setting up some halls here, making men {221} stay instead of going into the country, and getting W. Froude and Johnson to set up a school of science. The said W. F. wishes you to come down to him to Dartington at Christmas.

As to your criticism on R. H. F.'s text, some of the things you object to were already altered in the proof. The 'Dome of St. Peter's' was written out by W. Froude himself. Why might not St. Peter's dome be like a geometrical staircase? You need not make your review a mere panegyric.

The Lincoln men seem to have thought James Mozley a Puseyite. They confessed he was the best man, and elected instead a nephew of Arnold's, which, to their horror, they discovered too late.


Oriel: December 12, 1837.
As to the statutes, the Heads of Houses hurried things on so indecently there was no time for anything. We had several meetings, but could not agree. At first only sixteen signed the protest; in the course of three weeks it has increased to between thirty and forty; but that is a small number. The majorities were so large that it was not possible we could bring up on a sudden sufficient men, and as the question was intricate, and time was requisite to come to a fair judgment, it would have looked like party spirit. I am told the Sheffield clergy are going to send a remonstrance to the Heads of Houses. It would be well if non-residents in various places did so; but they should first wait for Vaughan Thomas's pamphlet. It, I suppose, will give information. And read Greswell's, who, however, unluckily goes into the 'Edinburgh's' clamour for the professorial system. Is it not curious we should be pulling with the 'Edinburgh' and the extreme Whigs?

Mr. Atkinson, Fellow of Lincoln, has been rejected for a school at York on the ground of his holding Oxford opinions. He was asked totidem verbis if he held the opinions of the Tracts.

Entries in 'Chronological Notes,' for 1837:

January 2 [1837].—Read prayers at Littlemore every day this week. [I believe there was daily prayer there from the time the chapel was opened.] {222}
February 3.—Had men to tea for first time [this the beginning of my weekly soirées].
April 9.—Early Communion at St. Mary's first time; nineteen persons altogether.
May 10.—Snow and thunder; leaves not out.
July 18.—Parcel came with Mr. Church's Translation of the Fathers.
August 26.—Mr. Hope called [this was the beginning of my intimacy with dear Mr. Hope].
November 5.—Began catechising children in Church.
November 23.—Convocation for revision of University statutes.
December 22.—Sent up first lecture to Gilbert & Rivington, on Justification.


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1. It was this clever device on the part of the Editor of the Christian Observer that perhaps added intensity to Mr. Newman's objection to footnotes against which he warned the Editor. Footnotes may undoubtedly be a distraction, but not always an unwelcome one; but to him they were, as such, instruments in the 'tearing and rending' which interruptions on a settled employment always subjected him to. But he concludes, 'An Editor must do the work his own way and not mine,' making an exception in the case of 'letters which, being independent of each other and fragmentary, admit of footnotes without injury.'
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2. In inserting this critique on Miss Austen's masterpiece the Editor has a sense almost of disloyalty to this delightful writer. But Miss Austen's novels are a battlefield, and the reader has a right to the opinion here given. The ethos, as Mr. Newman calls it, of a book came always foremost in his critical estimation. He condoned a good deal when this satisfied him. Miss Austen described parsons as she saw them, and did not recognise it as in her province to preach to them, except indirectly by portraying the Mr. Collinses and Mr. Eltons of the day.
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3. To show that Mr. Newman did not use these gatherings for the purpose of converting young men to his views the following letter from Miss Mitford may be given:—

Autumn, 1853.—' ... The great light was Newman ... I do not know him and probably never shall; but I know one trait of his character whilst still at Oxford which struck me much. It happened that a distant connexion of my mother's, the eldest son of a chaplain in the navy, was seized with a violent fancy to go to Oxford. He was a plodding lad of Greek and metres—with singular good conduct but no shining talents—likely to get on by classical knowledge as a tutor or professor. There was a large family and little money; and his father told him at once, "Frank, I cannot afford the necessary allowance." "Just give me a little to begin with, father," returned Frank, "and I will get on as my betters have done before me, by teaching others, while learning myself." His schoolmaster being sure that he would and could do this, Frank was sent to Oxford, taking, amongst other recommendations, letters from me, in which I openly told this design. One of my letters was to an old friend of Mr. Newman's, to whom he showed it; and when next I saw Frank, he told me—somewhat to my alarm (for it was in the very height of the controversy)—that he owed to me the kind notice of that great scholar. "I breakfast with him once a week," quoth Frank, "and he gives me the best advice possible." "What about?" I inquired. "Everything," returned Frank—"the classics, history, mathematics, general literature. He thinks me in danger of overworking myself at Greek—he, such a scholar!—and tells me to diversify my reading, to take exercise, and to get as much practical knowledge and cheerful society as I can. He questioned me about Shakespeare's poetry and the prose-writers after Bacon. In short, he talks to me of every sort of subject except what is called Tractarianism, and that he has never mentioned." Now this seemed to me roost honourable.'—Miss Mitford's Letters, vol. iii. p. 273. {202}
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4. Sermons on Various Occasions, p. 265.
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5. Life of Bishop Wilberforce, vol. i. p. 95.
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6. This weekly communion Mr. Newman subsequently mentions, as the only one of his parochial plans which he began with any thought of the University men.
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Newman Reader — Works of John Henry Newman
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