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connexions, that nourish the prejudices of a party APPEND. spirit, more than many are aware of; but it would b e be still more expected from my principles, were they known.
From this narrative, confirmed by authentic papers, it will appear with the utmost evidence :
ist, That Archbishop WAKE was not the first mover in this correspondence, nor the person that formed the project of union between the English and Gallican churches.
2dly, That he never made any concessions, nor offered to give up, for the sake of peace, any one point of the established doctrine and discipline of the church of England, in order to promote this union.
3dly, That any desires of union with the church of Rome, expressed in the archbishop's letters, proceeded from the hopes (well founded, or illusory, is not my business to examine here) that he at first entertained of a considerable reformation in that church, and from an expectation that its most absurd doctrines would fall to the ground, if they could once be deprived of their great support, the Papal authority ;--the destruction of which authority was the very basis of this correspondence.
It will further appear that Dr WAKE considered union in external worship, as one of the best methods of healing the uncharitable dissensions that are often occasioned by a variety of sentiments in points of doctrine, in which a perfect uniformity is not to be expected. This is undoubtedly a wise principle, when it is not carried too far; and whether or no it was carried too far by this eminent prelate, the candid reader is left to judge from the following relation :
In'the month of November, 1717, Archbishop WAKE wrote a letter to Mr BEAUVOIR, chaplain Vol. VI.
APPEND. to the Earl of Stair, then ambassador at Paris, in
which his Grace acknowledges the receipt of several obliging letters from Mr BEAUVOIR. This is manifestly the first letter which the prelate wrote to that gentleman, and the whole contents of it are matters of a literary nature (f). In
(f) The perusal of this letter (which the reader will find among the pieces here subjoined, No. I.) is sufficient to remove the suspicions of the author of the Confessional, who seems inclined to believe, that Archbishop Wake was the first mover in the project of uniting the English and Gallican churches. This author having mentioned Mr BEAUVOIR's letter, in which Du Pin's desire of this union is communicated to the Archbishop, asks the following question : Can any man be certain that BEAUVOIR mentioned this merely out of his own head, and without some previous occasion given, in the Archbishop's letter to bim, for such a conversation with the Sorbonne doctors *? I answer to this question, that every one who reads the Archbishop's letter of the 28th of November, to which this letter of Mr BEAUVOIR's is an answer, may be very certain that Dr Wake's letter did not give Mr BEAUVOIR the least occasion for such a conversation, but relates entirely to the Benedictine edition of
St CHRYSOSTOM, MARTENE's Thesaurus Anecdotorum, and MORERI's Dictionary. But, says our author, there is an &c. in this copy of Mr BEAUVOIR's letter, very suspiciously placed, as if to cover something improper to be disclosed t. But really if any thing was covered here, it was covered from the Archbishop as well as from the public, since the very same &c, that we see in the printed copy of Mr BEAUVOIR's letter stands in the original. Besides, I would be glad to know, what there is in the placing of this &c. that can give rise to suspicion ? The passage of BEAUVOIR's letter runs thus : They (the Sorbonne doctors) talked as if the whole kingdom was to appeal to the future General council, &c. They wished for an union with the church of England, as the most effe&tual means to unite all the Western Churches. It is palpably evident, that the &c. here has not the least relation to the union in question, and gives no sort of reason to suspect any thing but the spirit of discontentment, which the insolent proceedings of the Court of Rome had excited among the French divines.
* See the 2d edition of the Confessional, Pref. p. lxxviii. Note W.
+ The other reflections that the author has there made upon the correspondence between Archbishop WAKE and the doctors of the Sorbonne, are examined in the following note.
answer to this letter, Mr BEAUVOIR, in one dated APPEND. the irth of December, 1717, 0. S. gives the Archbishop the information he desired, about the method of subscribing to a new edition of St Chrysostom, which was at that time in the press at Paris, and then mentions his having dined with Du Pin, and three other doctors of the Sorbonne, who talked as if the whole kingdom of France was to appeal (in the affair of the Bull Unigenitus) to a future general council, and who wished for an union with the church of England, as the most effectual means to unite all the western churches. Mr Beauvoir adds, that Dr Du Pin had desired him to give his duty to the Archbishop (8). Here we see the first hint, the very first overture that was made relative to a project of union between the English and Gallican churches; and this hint comes originally from the doctors of the Sorbonne, and is not at all occasioned by any thing contained in preceding letters from Archbishop WAKE to Mr BEAUVOIR, since the one only letter, which Mr BEAUVOIR had hitherto received from that eminent prelate, was entirely taken up in inquiries about some new editions of books that were then publishing at Paris.
Upon this the archbishop wrote a letter to Mr BEAUVOIR, in which he makes honourable mention of Du Pin as an author of merit ; and expresses his desire of serving him, with that benevolent politeness which reigns in our learned prelate's letters, and seenis to have been a striking line in his amiable character (b). Dr Du
(8) See the Letters subjoined, No. II.
() This handsome mention of Dr Du Pin, made by the archbishop, gives new subject of suspicion to the author of the Confessional. He had learned the fact from the article WAKE, in the Biographia Britannica ; but, says he, we are left to guess what this handsome mention was ;-„had the biographer given us this letter,
APPEND. Pin improved this favourable occasion of writing III. to the Archbishop a letter of thanks, dated Ja.
together with that of November 27, they might PROBABLY (it would have been more accurate to have said POSSIBLY) have discovered what the biographer did not want we should know, namely, the share Dr WAKE had in FORMING the project of an union between the two churches *. This is guessing with a wit. ness -and it is hard to imagine how the boldest calculator of probabilities could conclude from Dr WAKE's handsome men. tion of Dr Du Pin, that the fornier had a share, of any kind, in forming the project of union now under consideration. For the ingenious guesser happens to be quite mistaken in his conjecture ; and I hope to convince him of this, by satisfying his desire. He desires the letter of the 27th (or rather the 28th) of November ; I have referred to it in the preceding note, and he may read it at the end of this account t. He desires the letter in which handsome mention is made of Du Pin; and I can assure him, that in that letter there is not a single syllable relative to an union. The passage that regards Dr Du Pin is as follows: I am much obliged to you (says Dr WAKE, in his letter to Mr Beauvoir, dated January 2. 1717-18) for making my name known to Dr Du Pin. He is a gentle man by whose labours I have profited these many years. And I do really admire how it is possible for one man to publish so much, and yet so correctly, as he has generally done. I desire my respects to him ; and that if there be any thing here whereby I may be serviceable to him, he will freely command me. Such was the archbishop's handsome mention of Du Pin; and it evidently shews that, till then, there never had been any communication between them. Yet these are all the proofs which the author of the Confessional gives of the probability that the archbishop was the first mover in this affair.
Bui bis Grace accepted the party, a formal treaty commences, and is carried on in a correspondence of some length, &c. says the author of the Confessional. And I would candidly ask that author, upon what principles of Christianity, reason, or charity, Dr WAKE could have refused to hear the proposals, terms, and sentiments, of the Sorbonne doctors, who discovered an inclination to unite with his church? The author of the Confessional says elsewhere, that it was, at the best, officious and presumptuous in Dr WAKE to enter into a negociation of this nature, without authority from the church or the government . But the truth is, that he entered into no negociation or treaty on this head; he considered the letters that were written on both sides
* Coniessional, 2d edit. Pref. p. Ixxviii.
nuary 31. ( February u.), 1717-18; in which to- APPEND. wards the conclusion, he intimates his desire of
as a personal correspondence between individuals, which could not commence a negociation, until they had received the proper powers from their respective sovereigns.--And I do think the archbishop was greatly in the right to enter into this correspondence, as it seemed very likely, in the then circumstances of the Gallican church, to serve the Protestant interest, and the cause of reformation. If, indeed, in the course of this correspondence, Dr Wake had discovered any thing like what Mosheim imputes to him, even a disposition towards an union, founded upon the condition that each of the two churches should retain the greatest part of their respective and peculiar doctrines, I should think his conduct liable to censure. But no such thing appears in the archbishop's letters, which I have subjoined to this account, that the candid examiner may receive full satisfaction in this affair. MOSHEIM's mistake is palpable, and the author of the Confessional seems certainly to have been too hasty in adopting it. He alleges, that the archbishop might have maintained the justice and orthodoxy of every individual article of the church of England, and yet give up some of them for the sake of peace *. But ihe archbishop expressly declares, in his letiers, that he would give up none of them, and that, though he was a friend to peace, he was still a greater friend to truth. The author's reflection, that without some concessions on the part of the archbishop, the treaty could not have gone a step farther, may be questioned in theory; for treaties are often carried on for a long time without concessions on both sides, or perhaps on either; and the archbishop might hope, that Du Pin, who had yielded several things, would still yield more ; but this reflection is overturned by the plain fact. Besides, I repeat what I have already insinuated, that this correspondence does not deserve the name of a treary t. Proposals were made only on Du Pin's side ; and these proposals were positively rejected by the archbishop, in his letters to Mr BEAUVOIR. Nor did he propose any thing in return to either of the Sorbonne doctors, but that they should entirely renounce the authority of the Pope, hoping, though perhaps too fancifully, that when this was done, the two churches might come to an agreement about other matters, as far as was necessary. But the author of the Confessional supposes, that the archbishop must have made some concessions; because the letters on both sides were sent to Rome, and received there as