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CHA P. der an adminiftration weak and bigotted, factious and XLVII. diforderly, the Austrian greatness began anew to appear formidable to Europe.



In England, the antipathy to the catholics revived a little upon this tragical event; and fome of the laws, which had been formerly enacted for no other purpose, than to keep these religionists in awe, began now to be executed with greater rigour and severity R.

THOUGH James's timidity and indolence fixed him, during most of his reign, in a very prudent inattention to foreign affairs, there happened, this year, an event in Europe of fuch mighty confequence as to rouze him from his lethargy, and fummon up all his zeal and enterArminia prize. A profeffor of divinity, named Vorftius, the difnism. ciple of Arminius, was called from a German to a Dutch univerfity; and as he differed from his Britannic majefty in fome nice questions concerning the intimate effence and fecret decrees of God, he was confidered a dangerous rival in fcholaftic fame, and was, at laft, obliged to yield to the legions of that royal doctor, whose fyllogifms he might have refuted or eluded. If vigour was wanting in other incidents of James's reign, here he behaved even with haughtiness and infolence; and the states were obliged, after feveral remonstrances, to deprive Vorstius of his chair, and to banish him their dominions L. The king carried no farther his profecutions against that profeffor; though he had very charitably hinted to the ftates, That as to the burning Vorftius for his blafphemies and atheifm, he left them to their own chriftian wifdom; but furely never heretic better deferved the flames M. It is to be remarked, that, at this period, all over Europe, except in Holland alone, the practice of burning heretics ftill prevailed, even in proteftant countries: and inftances were not wanting in England, during the reign of James. The Dutch themselves were, at laft, by state intrigue, and the tyranny of prince Maurice, forced from their rational and humane maxims; and the perfecuting bigots, a little after this time, fignalized their power by the death of the virtuous Barnevelt, and the imprisonment of the virtuous and learned Grotius. The fcholaftic controverfies about free-will, and grace, and predestination, begot thefe violent convulfions

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K Kennet, p. 684.
Works, p. 355.

L Id. p. 715.

M K. James's


In tracing the coherence among the fyftems of mo- CHA P. dern theology, we may observe that the doctrine of ab- XLVII. folute decrees has ever been intimately connected with the enthusiastic spirit: as that doctrine affords the highest fubject of joy, triumph, and fecurity, to the fuppofed elect, and exalts them, by infinite degrees, above the rest of mankind. All the first reformers adopted these principles; and the Jansenists too, a fanatical sect in France, not to mention the Mahometans in Asia, have ever embraced them. As the Lutheran establishments were subjected to epifcopal jurifdi&tion, their enthusiastic genius gradually decayed, and men had leisure to perceive the abfurdity of fuppofing God to punish, by infinite torments, what he himself, from all eternity, had unchangeably decreed. The king, though, at this time, his Calviniftic education had rivited him in the doctrine of abfolute decrees, yet, being a zealous partizan of epifcopacy, was infenfibly engaged, towards the end of his reign, to favour the milder theology of Arminius. Even in fo great a doctor, the genius of the religion prevailed over its fpeculative tenets; and with him, the whole clergy gradually dropped the more rigid principles of abfolute reprobation and unconditional decrees. Some noise was, at firft, made about these innovations; but being drowned in the fury of factions and civil wars which fucceeded, the scholastic arguments made an infignificant figure amidst those violent difputes about civil and ecclefiaftical power with which the nation was agitated. And upon the restoration, the church, though the ftlill retained her old fubfcriptions and articles of faith, was found to have totally changed her fpeculative doctrines, and to have embraced tenets more suitable to the genius of her difcipline and worship, without its being poffible to affign the precife period, in which the alteration was produced.

IT may be worth obferving, that, about this time, James, from his great defire to promote controversial divinity, erected a college at Chelsea for the entertainment of twenty perfons, who fhould be entirely employed in refuting the papifts and puritans. All the efforts of the great Bacon could not procure an establishment VOL. VI.



Kennet, p. 685. Camden's Brit. vol. i. p. 370. Gibfon's edit.

CHA P. for the cultivation of natural philofophy: Even to this XI.VII. day, no fociety has been instituted for the polishing and fixing our language. The only encouragement, which 1611. the fovereign in England has ever given to any thing, that has the appearance of fcience, was this fhort-lived establishment of James; an inftitution quite fuperfluous, confidering the unhappy propenfion, which, at that time, fo univerfally poffeffed the nation for polemical theology.


State of

To confider James in a more advantageous light, we must take a view of him as the legiflator of Ireland; and moft of the inftitutions, which he had framed for civilizing that kingdom, being finished about this period, it may not here be improper to give fome account of them. He frequently boafts of the management of Ireland as his mafter-piece; and it will appear, upon inquiry, that his vanity, in this particular, was not altogether without fouudation.

AFTER the fubjection of Ireland by Elizabeth, the more difficult task still remained; to civilize the barbarous inhabitants, to reconcile them to laws and industry, and to render their fubjection durable and useful to the crown of England. James proceeded in this work by a fteady, regular, and well-concerted plan and in the fpace of nine years, according to Sir John Davis, he made greater advances towards the reformation of that kingdom, than had been made in the 440 years, which had elapfed fince the conqueft was at first attempted P.

IT was previously neceffary to abolish the Irish customs, which fupplied the place of laws, and which were calculated to keep that people for ever in a state of barbarism and diforder.

By the Brehon law or custom, every crime, however enormous, was punished, not with death, but by a fine or pecuniary mulct, which was levied upon the criminal. Murder, itself, as among all the antient barbarous nations, was atoned for in this manner; and each man, according to his rank, had a different rate or value affixed to him, which, if any one was willing to pay, he needed not fear the affaffinating his enemy. This rate was called his eric. When Sir William Fitzwilliams, being lord deputy, told Maguire, that he was to fend a fheriff into Fermannah

P P. 259. edit. 1613.


Fermannah, which a little before, had been made a CHA P. county, and fubjected to the English law; Your fberiff, XLVII. faid Maguire, fhall be welcome to me: But let me know, beforehand his eric, or the price of his head, that, if my people cut it off, I may levy the money upon the county As for oppreffion, extortion, and other trefpaffes, fo little were they regarded, that no penalty was affixed to them, and no redrefs for fuch offences could ever be obtained.

THE Customs of Gavelkinde and Taniftry were attended with the fame abfurdity in the diftribution of property. Upon the death of any perfon, his land, by the custom of Gavelkinde, was divided among all the males of the fept or family, both baftard and legitimate: And, after partition made, if any of the fept died, his portion was not fhared out among his fons; but the chieftain, at his difcretion, made a new partition of all the lands, belonging to that sept, and gave every one his fhare R. As no man, by reason of this cuftom, enjoyed the fixed property of any land; to build, to plant, to inclofe, to cultivate, to improve, would have been fo much loft labour.

The chieftains and the Tanifts, though drawn from the principal families, were not hereditary, but were eftablished by election, or, more properly speaking, by force and violence. Their authority was abfolute; and, notwithstanding that certain lands were affigned to the office, its chief profit refulted from exactions, dues, affeffments, for which there was no fixed law, and which were levied at pleasure S. Hence arofe that common bye-word among the Irish, That they dwelt weftward of the law, which dwelt beyond the river of the Barrow: Meaning the country, where the English inhabited, and which extended not beyond the compafs of twenty miles, lying in the neighbourhood of Dublin T.

AFTER abolishing these Irish customs, and fubftituting English law in their place; James, having taken all the natives under his protection, and declared them free citizens, proceeded to govern them by a regular adminiftration, military as well as civil.

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СНАР. A SUFFICIENT army was maintained, its discipline XLVII. infpected, and its pay tranfmitted from England, in or der to keep the foldiers from preying upon the country, as had been usual in foreign reigns. When Odoghartie raised an infurrection, a reinforcement was fent over, and the flames of that rebellion were immediately extinguished.

ALL minds being firft quieted by an univerfal indemnity ", circuits were established, justice administred, oppreffion banished, and crimes and disorders of every kind feverely punished. As the Irish had been univerfally engaged in the rebellion against Elizabeth, a refignation of all the rights, which had been formerly granted them to separate jurifdictions, was rigorously exacted; and no authority, but that of the king and the law, was permitted throughout the kingdom.

A RESIGNATION of all private eftates was even required; and when they were restored, the proprietors received them under fuch conditions as might prevent, for the future, all tyranny and oppreffion over the common people. The value of the dues, which the nobles ufually claimed from their vaffals, was estimated at a fixed fum, and all further arbitrary exactions prohibited under fevere penalties Z.

THE whole province of Ulfter having fallen to the crown by the attainder of rebels, a company was eftablished in London, for planting new colonies in that fertile country the property was divided into moderate fhares, the largest not exceeding 2000 acres: Tenants were brought over from England and Scotland: The Irish were removed from the hills and faftneffes, and settled in the open country: Husbandry and the arts were taught them: A fixed habitation fecured: Plunder and robbery punished: And, by thefe means, Ulfter, from being the most wild and diforderly province of all Ireland, foon became the best cultivated and most civilized A

SUCH were the arts, by which James introduced humanity and justice among a people, who had ever been buried in the most profound barbarism.

U Id. p. 263.
Davis, p. 276.

Noble cares!


* Id. p. 264, 265, &c. Y Sir John z Id. p. 278. Á Id. p. 280.

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