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bosom themselves before them they are in some degree spellbound-a power
is Let the landlord act with what kindness he may to the people on his estate, let his agent do the same, still it will be found in ne practical economy of life, that untoward matters will, from time to time, turn up, which it is well to assuage, to remedy, to explain; such matters as, but for the genial interference of some healing hand in season, will fester and irritate. The clergyman steps in his personal respect and regard for the landlord would, even under other circumstances, lead him to set his character and conduct right with the people, if possible ; he probably knows him well—is aware of his private feelings, real intentions towards his neighbours and dependants—is sure, from what he does know, his meaning is of the best, whatever may be the interpretation put upon him, or whatever may be the mistakes in the execution of his purposeshas heard him, perhaps, express a dozen times over the object at which he is driving in his measures--a humane object-a benefit in the event to the parties who are at present the loudest to complain. Even if the squire should be of a less disinterested kind, still the bias of the established clergyman of the parish is to make the best of him with his people. Independently of the obligations or courtesies by which he may have been in some measure won—and which it would be false and foolish pride to reject, or not to remember-he is by habit, as an episcopalian minister, no less than for conscience'-sake, disposed to maintain respect for rank, upon principle-honour to whom honour is due—upon principle which the party aggrieved, or thinking himself so, feels that the clergyman is in his vocation when he urges, and would despise him if he forbore to urge. Any clergyman would be conscious that he was acting not only an unrighteous but an unwise and dishonourable part, were he to foster the querulous disposition of the people committed to him—he would be conscious that he was placing himself in a false position; and he would know that, independently of all higher considerations, his influence with them would soon decline were he to aggravate instead of dispersing their ill humours. His line is clear and precise-a line which we honestly believe the clergy of the established church almost universally follow-to plead for the landlord with the tenants, and for the tenants with the landlord_and so to encourage the one to be content and the other to be considerate.
Nor is it only by rectifying mistakes, removing prejudices, and mitigating grievances, real or imaginary, that the clergyman interposes between the landlord and tenant, with so much advantage to the former, however little it may be appreciated;
but also by directing his favourable notice to examples, which otherwise might be overlooked by him, of silent suffering, of frugai housewifery, of prudent self-restraint, of filial or parental devotedness, which the occupants of his property present to the eye of one whose calling leads him to enter amongst them freely, and follow them to their fire-sides. Many are the scenes going on upon every estate, which the owner of it knows little about heroic sacrifices, though upon a small scale and amongst humble peasants--struggles of delicacy, though under a homely garb chivalrous honour, where the arms are no better than the mattock and the spade :
• Gods! what lies I have heard ! Our courtiers say, all's savage but at court:
Experience! O thou disprov'st report.' Now it is good for the proprietor of an estate to know that such things are, and at his own doors. He might have guessed indeed, as a general truth, even whilst moving in his own exclusive sphere, that many a story of intense interest might be supplied by the annals of his parish. Crabbe would have taught him thus much, had he been a reader of that most sagacious of observers, most searching of moral anatomists, most graphic of poets ; and we reverence this great writer not less for his genius than for his patriotism, in bravely lifting up the veil which is spread tween the upper classes and the working-day world, and letting one half of mankind know what the other is about. This effect alone gives a dignity to his poetry, which poems constructed after a more Arcadian model would never have in our eyes, however pleasingly they may babble of green fields. But such wholesome incidents reach the ears of the landlord in his own particular case most commonly through the clergyman—they fall rather within his department than another's - they lie upon his beat—through his representations the sympathies of the landlord are profitably drawn out, and judiciously directed to the individual—and another thread is added to those cords of a man, by which the owner and occupant of the soil are knit together, and society is interlaced.
Nor is this all. The children born upon an estate are to be brought up with some sentiments or other, loyal or liberal. As it is, they fall under the eye of the clergyman-he, directly or through his family, takes a labouring oar at the parochial and Sunday schools -- the various duties resulting from the various relations in life come under his handling; on these occasions he may take, if he will, an opportunity of strengthening in their early years the notions of subordination and devotion to the lords of the soil—and he rejoices to do so; not from any base and timeserving spirit, but from a feudal as well as religious feeling, which stirs in himself, and which he would impart to those about him. Other seasons, too, there often are, which may be improved to the reception and propagation of such sentiments in the young, and of which the clergyman is apt to take advantage : an heir is born at the Hall—a son attains his majority—a daughter is made a bride-an honour has graced the house-a feat of arms has been achieved by some gallant member of it. He knows little of human nature who does not know that much good-will to the landlord may be planted throughout a parish by the cheap hospitality which the parsonage finds a pleasure in furnishing to ihe children of the poor inhabitants on occasions like these. Neither is this done under any low-thoughted desire of paying court to a patron, but upon principle-upon the principle of renewing the kindly bond between high and low, which idle refinement, on the one hand, and over-much depression on ihe other, have impaired.
We may be exposing ourselves to a scoff, we are aware, whilst we enter into these very minute and unambitious details, but for that we care not. It is, and long has been, the curse of the times, that men in responsible situations will not give themselves the trouble to examine the manifold bearings of a subject before they decide upon it :-a man of comprehensive views, in the jargon of the day, meaning a man who casts his eye over the broad surface of an intricate question, concludes upon it by intuition, and sneers at the painstaking dunce who calls for documents. Without such details we cannot properly insense (the word is Shakspeare's) the owners of the soil, that the clergy of the established church go before them, as men bearing a shield; and with them we can only do it imperfectly, for we miss after all far more to the purpose than we summon.
We put it then to the land-owners of the country, to say whether they can afford to part with men who are the best outworks they have; especially at a moment when the eyes of the Philistines are upon them, and their hands itch for the spoil. put it to them further, whether the position these same men occupy is not altogether the consequence of an established national church.-We say, it is this which places the minister in the auspicious relation to the landlord we have described—it does so both by its discipline and by its revenues :-By its discipline--for he who is for a bishop at the head of a church, is for a king at the head of a country, and a lord at the head of a manor; his ideas of ecclesiastical and civil discipline run habitually side by side: so again, he who is for a popular form of government of the church, naturally leans to the same in the state, and in every fraction of the state :—The primary theory of the one or the many,
the εις βασιλευς or the πολυκοιρανιη, tints the views a man takes of the system of society throughout-exalting or abasing the monarch, defending or abandoning the squire. By its revenuesfor by this means it is that the mediating party is rendered independent of either, and therefore above suspicion in his interference; by this means it is that he is of such a station in society as to be brought into familiar and friendly contact with the superior, whilst he is of such a calling in it as to be brought into no less friendly and familiar communion with those below. The agent, who is as eyes to the proprietor, it must be at once perceived is not so favourably placed for seeing the whole game; nor, if he could see it, is he in a condition to supply the place of the clergyman in the social system. We press this point the more, because the clergyman is now almost the only conductor that remains between the upper and lower ranks. The tendency of capital to accumulate in masses has annihilated that middle class of landed proprietors which existed in former times amongst us; and, with the single exception we have mentioned, all the rounds of the social ladder are out between the bottom and the top. But we must pursue this question of church revenue a little further : we have said, that it is the nature of our ecclesiastical endowments which enables the clergy to stand where they do amongst their fellow-citizens.
For, suppose the free-trade principles to be adopted in religion as in other matters -and to this point things have been tending for some time, and with the blind approval of many who ought to have known better—what would the effect be upon the structure of society, and more particularly upon that part of it to which our remarks have been chiefly directed ? No doubt we are arguing this great question unworthily, and higher ground would be the true ground to take; but our present business is with the landlords and large proprietors, whom we would caution to take care of themselves in what they are doing to the church-they are stirring their own foundations, or laying bare at least their own defence, far more fearfully than they seem to imagine. Now, in matters of merchandise, free trade may possibly be all very well—it is no part of our present business to decide whether it is so or not)—the demand may create the supply: but in the concerns of religion it is different. We apprehend it is not found on experience, that those who stand in most want of religion are the most anxious to procure it. The more hungry a man is, the louder will be his cry for food; but the more ungodly he is, will he be the more clamorous for a church? Would it were so !--for by this time we should have our great towns amply provided with church-room. The two states of Connecticut and Rhode Island had been planted
by colonies from the same nation, lie in the same climate, and are in fact merely separated by a meridional line ; but we know, on the authority of Dr. Dwight, whom Dr. Dealtry quotes in the excellent Charge named at the head of our paper-(the authority, be it remembered, of one who was neither an episcopalian nor an Englishman)—that the one state presented, down to a recent period, a mere contrast to the other in its religious aspect. The Rhodeislanders resisted the support of the public worship of God by law, leaving it to be regulated entirely by the demand for it. The people of Connecticut, on the contrary, like the rest of the New Englanders, enforced it; and, accordingly, whilst the latter state was, for a long time, duly provided with means for keeping alive the knowledge of God, the former, with the exception of the large towns, had scarcely a well-educated minister throughout it-clowns and mechanics, too idle to drive a plough or a nail, taking refuge in a pulpit; and the inhabitants of that district, in this as in other respects, the reverse of their neighbours - low, licentious, and ignorant. And, if it be said, in reply, it is not contemplated to go the lengths of the people of Rhode Island-public worship is to be maintained by the law of the land, but by tax and not by glebe or tithe-it may be answered, that not only does this provision violate the principles of free-trade as much as the other,
but also, as we may learn from the continuation of this chapter of American history on which we have touched, is a perishable provision after all. Connecticut did well in compelling its citizens to maintain a church; -What would you have more? We reply,--we would have an ecclesiastical revenue which did not arise from the people at all, whether exacted or spontaneous, but from endowments, as our own does; for Dr. Dwight is scarcely cold in his grave before Connecticut itself throws the tax off as onerous, and leaves it at the option of every individual to belong to a congregation or not, only requiring him, if he does so, to pay his dues. And in New Hampshire, the compulsory payment has in like manner been abandoned ; and with this effect, says Dr. Chalmers, that when a chapel has been vacant by the death of the incumbent, his place has not been supplied; and the district which enjoyed his services, now left without any sabbath ministrations whatever, gives melancholy attestations to the native listlessness and unconcern of its families.' So that the process going on has been, first, the rejection of the glebe and tithe system; then, the adoption in its stead of a compulsory tax; and, finally, the relinquishment of the tax and the consignment of the immortal interests of men's souls to the tender mercies of a trading populace. It is all very fine to talk of the increased stimulus which would thus be communicated to the ministers of religion, by
and more ;