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An acquaintance with history in general is considered an essential part of a liberal education; and to no branch of study does the student commonly apply himself with more pleasure or profit, than to this. Even the uneducated man finds a rich reward in perusing the records of older times; and few, it is believed, can be found, at least in our own country, who have not had sufficient curiosity to read a half score or more volumes of civil history.

Yet that branch of history, called ecclesiastical, has been, it is believed, comparatively neglected, -neglected, not by the general student only, but even by the great body of the professed friends of Christianity.

Among the causes of this neglect, especially on the part of those who have no personal interest in religion, this is probably one, viz. the natural repugnance or the human heart to dwell upon that " kingdom which is not of this world," and which, in its principles, is at utter variance with those by which they are governed. But, in respect to professed Christians, this must not be admitted. Other reasons may be assigned; and among them, the following is most prominent, viz. the voluminous character of writers on ecclesiastical history, such as Mosheim, Milner, Neal — but more especially the tediously minute and repulsive form, in which their works are written.

But neither inordinate length nor dry detail are essential to a faithful ecclesiastical history. The great outlines of it are comparatively few; and incidents sufficiently interesting and important exist, by which to enliven and enrich it.

Under this conviction, the present volume has been attempted, and is now presented to the public. The author has not the vanity to believe that the work is perfect; yet he indulges the hope, that he will be found to have improved somewhat upon those who have gone before him in the leading object in view, viz. to present the subject in an attractive form. At this he has sedulously aimed Whether, in his efforts, he has been successful, a candid public will judge.

In respect to the writers principally consulted for the materials which form this volume, it will perhaps be necessary only 10 say, that he has derived assistance from every work adapted to his purpose, within his reach ; and which he supposed would render his work more useful and acceptable. To all, it has been his intention to give the credit due ; yet, in respect to some, he may have unintentionally failed. It would be in vain to supply deficiencies here.

It may be appropriately added, that the work has been prepared with special reference to the younger classes of society. To them it is presented, as the history of a kingdom which is gloriously advancing in our own times, and of which they particularly are invited, by its Divine Founder, to become members.

Of the young, and indeed of all, it may be inquired, what more interesting and important field of knowledge can you enter, than that of ecclesiastical history? Where exist more striking instances of virtue, benevolence and patriotism? Where are to be found more useful lessons on the subject of degraded human nature ? Would we wish an example of benevolence? We have it in the voluntary death of the Son of God. Would we witness what zeal can do, in a good cause? We have presented to us the apostles of our Lord. Or, ask we for instances of meekness, constancy and fortitude? We have hundreds of such in the martyrs of Christianity. Besides, no portion of history so signally displays the dealings of God with mankind. Here we see most emphatically the operations of his hand, putting to nought the “wisdom of this world," and urging forward a kingdom, in opposition to the combined powers of earth and hell.

The kingdoms of this world are destined in succession to pass away. The proud empires of antiquity are dissolved. Rome, with her splendid appendages, has crumbled to ruins. Carthage has fallen. And the kingdoms which now exist, and which have been consolidated by political cunning and sagacity, may live at no distant era only in the records of history. But the kingdom of Jesus will endure, and continue to gather strength and glory in all time to come


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1. Accession of Vespasian.--2. Destruction of Jerusalem.-3. Accession of Titus.-4.

Second persecution under Domitian.-5. Nerva.-6. Third persecution under Trajan.-7.
State of the Church under Adrian.-8. Under Antoninus Pius.-9. Fourth persecution.-
Martyrdom of Polycarp and Blandina.–10. State of the Church under Commodus.—11.
Pertinax.–12. Fifth persecution.—13. State of the Church under Caracalla.--14, 15. Macri.
nus-Heliogabalus-Alexander Severus.–16. Sixth persecution.—17. Seventh persecution.
-18–21. State of the Church under Decius.-22. Commencement of monkery.-23. Cy.
prian.-24. Noratian schism.--25. State of the Church under Gallus.-26. Eighth persecu-
tion.-27. Ninth persecution.-28. State of the Church under Dioclesian.-29. Tenth
persecution.-Distinguished characters in period third.



Page 65
1. Accession of Constantine.—2. Division of the empire.-3. State of the Church under
Constantine.-4. Conduct of Galerius.—7. Of Maximin.-6. Contest between Maximin
and Licinius.—7. Favorable tendency of this contest to Christianity.—8. Defeat of Max-
entius by Coastantine.-9, 10. Licinius and Constantine at first favor Christianity; but, at
length, the former opposes it.—11. Death of Licinius, and subjugation of the whole Roman
empire to Constantine.-Universal establishment of Christianity.–12. State of the Church
under Conetantine.-13, 14. Rise and fall of the Donatists.—15-23. Arian controversy.-
24. Death of Constantine.-25. State of religion.-26. Distribution of the empire.-27.
Monkery.—28. Increase of Arianism.—29. Julian the Apostate.-30. Increase of the influ-
ence of the bishop of Rome.-31. State of the Church under Jovian.-32. Under Valen-
tinian and Valeng.–33. Death of Athanasius.—34, 35. State of the Church under Gratian
and Theodosius.-36. Pelagianism.-37, 38. State of the Church under Arcadius and Ho-
norius.-39. Invasion of the Roman empire by northern barbarous tribes.40. Capture of
Rome by Alaric.-41. Rarages of the Visigoths, Franks, Saxons, &c.-42. Their conduct
with respect to Christianity.-43. Establishment of the Franks in Gaul, and the conversion
of Clovis.44. Introduction of Christianity into Ireland.45. Into England.-46. Su-
premacy of the Roman pontiff.—Distinguished characters in period fourth.



1. Rise of the papal power.—2. Circumstances contributing to its increase and establish-
ment.-3. Means employed to extend its influence-preference given to human compositions
over the Bible.-4. Efforts to convert the heathen.-5. Introduction of the worship of
images.-9. Influence of monkery.—7. Relics of saints.-8. Absolution and indulgences.-
9. Purgatory.-10. Establishment of the Inquisition.—11, 12. Effect upon religion of these
efforts of the Roman pontiffs.—13. Rise of the Mahometan imposture.–14. Publication of
his system by Mahomet.-15. Meets for a time with little success.—16. Flees to Medina.--
17. His signal success and conquest of all Arabia.-18. Spread of Mahometanism after his
dea:h.—19. State of the Church in the seventh century.-20. Increase of the authority of
the Roman pontiffs.-21--25. Controversy about image worship.—26, 27. Accession of Pepin
10 the throne of France, and the establishment of the Roman pontiff as a temporal prince.-
23. Controversy in the Catholic Church about images.-30. Opposition to the Church of
Rome by Claude of Turin.-31. State of the Church in the tenth century.—32. In the
eleventh century.—33. Final separation of the eastern and western Churches.-Distinguished
characters in period fifth.


1. Crusades.-2, 3. Origin of them.-4. Adrocated by Peter the Hermit.-5. Rise,
progress and success of the first crusade.-6. Rise, progress and failure of the second cru-
sade.-3. Third crusade.-9. General view of the crusadles.-10. Moral and religious
effects.-12. State of the Church froin the time of Claude till Peter Waldo.-14. Origin of
the Waldenses.--15. Other names by which they were distinguished.-16. Their existence
predicted in Scripture.-17. Conversion of Waldo.-18. Labors and success.—19, 20, 21.
Persecution and flight of himself and disciples.—22, 23. Edicts against them.-Establish-
ment and cruelties of the Inquisition-first, second and third time of torturing-affecting
story of Mr. Martin.--25. Persecution of the Albigenses-siege of Carcassone.-26. State
of the Churches in the valleys of Piedmont.--27. Flight of the Albigenses from France to
Spain.-28. Persecution of them in that country.---29. In Germany, Flanders, and Poland.-
20. E-tallislunent of the year of jubilee.--31. Highest eminence of the papal power.--

$234. Causes which set a limit to the usurpations of the Roman pontiffs.—35. Great
western schism.-36. Persecution and death of John Wickliffe.-37. Origin of the Lollards
or Wickliffites.-38. Persecution of the Lollards.-Death of lord Cobham.—39. Dissemi-
dation of the writings of Wickliffe in Bohemia by John Huss.-40. Persecution of Huss.-
41. Death of Huss and Jerome of Prague. 42, 43, Effects of these deaths in Bohemia-
spirited conduct of Ziska.-14. Calixtines and Taborites.-45. Hussites, afterwards known
by the name of United Brethren.-46. Discovery of printing, and its effects.—47, 48. Perse-
cution of the Waldenses in the valleys of Piedmont.-49. Close of the period.-Distin-
gaisbed characters in period sixth.



1. Date of its commencement.--2. Religious state of the world at the opening of the six-

teenth century.-36. Circumstances favorable to a reformation.-7. Immediate occasion

of it.-3. Derogatory conduct of Jobn Tetzel.—9, 10. Exposure of the errors of Tetzel by

Luther.-11. Controversy between Tetzel and Luther.-12. Indifference of Leo X.-13.

Luther summoned to appear before cardinal Cajetan-result of this conference.-14. Ap-

pointment of Charles Miltitz to confer with Luther.-15. Result of this conference.-16.

Controversy between Eckius and Carolstadt.-17. Between Eckius and Luther.—18. Philip

Melancthon.—19. Reformation begun in Switzerland by Zuinglius.-20. Excommunica-

tion of Luther by Leo X.-21. Final withdrawal of Luther from the Church of Rome.-

22. Attempt of Lco to enlist Charles V. against Luther.-23. Luther summoned to appear

before the diet of Worms.-24. Spirited conduct of Luther on that occasion.-25. Conceal-

ment of Luther in the castle of Wartberg.—26. Employment while there.-27. Misman-

agement of Carolstadt.—28. Reappearance of Luther.—29. Death of Lco X. and state of

things under his successors Adrian VI. and Clement VII.–31. Spread of Christianity in

Sweden, Bengark, &c.-32. Dispute about the sacrament between Luther, Carolstadt and

Zuinglius.—33. Commotions in Germany - war of the peasants.-34. Death of Frederick

the Wise-progress of the Reformatio under his brother John.-35–37. Diet at Spires

issue of it.-38. Second diet at Spires-result unfavorable to the cause of the Reformers.-

39. Their solemn protest.-40. Diet of Augsburg. 41, 42. Confession of Augsburg.-43.

League of Smalcald.-44. Peace of Nuremberg.-45. Anabaptist commotions in West-

pbalia.--46. Commencement of the Reformation in England.–47. Progress of it during the

life of Henry VIII.-43. John Calvin.-49—52. Unsettled state of the religious world.-

53. Death and character of Luther._54. Council at Trent.—55, 56. Defeat of the Protestants

in a war with Charles.-57. The rule of faith and worship called the Interim.—58. Pro-

ceedings of the Reformers in reference to this.-59. Close of the council of Trent.–61.

Pacification of Passau.-62. Peace of religion, which established the Reformation.—Distin-
guished characters in period seventh.




1, 2. State of Europe at the date of the establishment of the Reformation.-3. Division

of prosessing Christians into different communities. 4. Depression of the Roman Church
in view of her loss of power.-5. First means adopted to regain her supremacy, viz. the
employment of the order of Jesuits.-6. Attempts to christianize the heathen.—7. Better
regulation of ber internal concerns.-8. Persecution of the Protestants—in Italy, Nether-
lands, Spain, France, parts of Germany and England.–9. Insufficiency of these means to
accomplish her purpose.-10. Causes which have contributed to her further decline.-11.
Present state of the papal power.-12. Rise of the Greek Church.-13. Stale of this Church
from 1054 to 1453.-14. Stale of this Church from the above period.-15. Separation of the
Russian Church from the Greek Church.-16. Introduction of Christianity into Russia.-

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