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apostles themselves; to employ words of devotion in this most solemn act of our religion, which we know to have been always employed by the Churches of Constantinople and Russia,-surely this to every true Catholic heart amongst us, must be a source of holy joy and delight. And will not such a feeling, if duly cherished, lead to the most blessed practical results? Will it not tend to foster sentiments of unfeigned charity towards men of different nations; to cause us to long for, and strive for, the apostolical blessedness of unrestricted communion; to soften down national prejudices, and to promote harmony and peace amongst mankind; and to fulfil more exactly than we have hitherto done His heavenly will, that "His Church might be one, even as He and the Father are one."

The Ecclesiologist: published by the Cambridge Camden Society. Nos. XIV. XV. October, 1842.

OUR recent article on styles of church architecture, has produced a reply from the Ecclesiologist, which devotes considerable space in its October number to the question between us. Our antagonist's tone is altogether courteous, and his remarks are so deserving of consideration, that, not to vindicate ourselves from them-not to defend our ground if we can find materials for doing so, would be treating them with blameworthy disrespect, and depriving them of their due. To this cause, and to no wish for keeping up a controversy with the Camden Society, in many of whose desires we so warmly sympathize, whose past services we cheerfully acknowledge, and from the future exertions and extension of which we hope for so much good, must be attributed our present rejoinder.

The aim of our article was, as our readers may remember, to dissuade them from the prevalent bigotry, as we deem it, in favour of Gothic as the only Christian architecture, and from a servile imitation of it in its past forms. The one of these tendencies appeared to us to have the effect of shutting men's eyes to much that is impressive and religious in existing architecture, from which they might profitably learn; the latter at once to deaden the creative spirit of art, and seriously to impede the due celebration of our holiest rite. Besides which, we expressed doubts whether, even under the auspices of the Camden Society, it were possible, at present, to build generally in what we could recognise as perfect or consistent Gothic.

At the outset, however, we made this concession, "that pointed Gothic is the Christian architecture in this sense, that it is the birth of the Christian mind, and the only architecture, according to the highest use of the word, that is so." In granting thus much, the Ecclesiologist considers us as having surrendered every thing, catches at our words, and straightway hangs on them the following syllogism:

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"Gothic is the only Christian architecture;

But St. Peter's and St. Paul's" (against anathematising which as Pagan we the Christian Remembrancer had protested) "are not Gothic; Therefore the architecture of St. Peter's and St. Paul's is not Christian."

Now, does this fairly follow from any thing we had said? Let our readers judge. We had excluded, and given our reasons for excluding, every European style except pure Grecian and pointed Gothic from the dignity of architecture in its highest sense; we had said that all others wanted that absolute harmony and consistency which the art must have in any full manifestation; and then we proceeded as follows:-" Now this harmony and consistency we have in pointed Gothic, just as we have it in pure Grecian; and, therefore, the one is the Christian and the other the Pagan architecture. Our exclusion of Roman, Romanesque, and Italian classical, from this dignity proceeds, it will be seen, from reasons different from those of Mr. Pugin and the Camden Society. With us they are tried, not on the question of Christian or Pagan, but of architecture in the highest sense, and no architecture. And in this sense we give it against them." Is it not plain that we have never conceded, that the architecture either of St. Peter's or St. Paul's is Pagan, and therefore, that the syllogism of the Ecclesiologist ties us down to nothing? We have surrendered no one circumstance connected with the architecture of either church, except its harmony and consistency,* and these we never ascribed to it.

However, we did concede to the Ecclesiologist, that pointed Gothic is the only complete Christian architecture, and then proceeded to consider whether we ought to go along with its writers in their deduction, that it is the only one we ought at present to employ; which we answered in the negative. They continue to reply in the affirmative, and confront us with another syllogism, as follows:

* The interior of St. Peter's is a far more perfect composition than that of St. Paul's, nor are we able to understand the feelings of a man in whose eyes it is otherwise than religious and Christian. It is true that the classical orders are employed in its details; but, even if the mere fact of their having been invented and employed by Pagans, is to make every building Pagan, in which they occupy a conspicuous place, such a consideration does not apply to St. Peter's, in which they are altogether accidental and surbordinate. They are there but the conventional form of the decoration. The real architecture, to which we are persuaded other forms of decoration would be found more congruous, consists in the piers, roundheaded arches, waggon-vaulted roof, and that “focus of glory," the dome.

A gentleman, who on such subjects is no common authority, has privately controverted our statement, that pointed Gothic is the only developed Christian architecture. This forms no part of our controversy with the Ecclesiologist, as the fact he alleges that there are forms of Romanesque as consistent and harmonious as Gothic, will, if true, strengthen our case against that periodical. We own, however, that all the Romanesque we have seen, is in our eyes but a transition; and though we feel far from qualified to enter the lists with such a combatant, we may say thus much, that a few individual specimens, however free from rude traces of the classical idea, and however true to one of their own, can hardly constitute an architecture. Before we can recognise a style as formed, we must have seen it in whole classes of buildings, and in all varieties of size, situation, and circumstances.

"We ought to build Christian Churches in the only Christian architecture the world has yet seen.

But Gothic is the only, &e.

Therefore our Churches ought to be Gothic."

We meet this reasoning, as the Ecclesiologist truly observes, by denying the major. We do not know that the second of the two arguments he puts in our mouth represents our meaning quite fairly. However that may be, it is with the first that we shall mainly concern ourselves just now. "We cannot execute it," (pointed Gothic) "satisfactorily."

After stating the question, the Ecclesiologist goes on to say:"Now the first allegation (that just quoted) is of so grave and weighty a nature, that one would think the writer must have many good arguments by which to support it. Will our readers believe that he only names one?" Before proceeding either to contest the question, whether we did indeed bring forward only one, or to consider that one, we may observe that in trying to establish any point, "a miss is as good as a mile," and so but one valid argument against it hinders the point from being established. Thus if our argument respecting the necessity of vaulted roofs was really a good one, it remains still to be shewn that we can at present execute pointed Gothic" satisfactorily.

The Ecclesiologist replies to it thus :


"This great argument then, which has to bear up the writer's theory that Gothic is impracticable, consists, when examined, of two assumptions1. That vaulted roofs are necessary; 2. That they cannot be had. And both these we deny. Granting them to be necessary, if church founders and church-builders determine to have them, they will have them. We wished, under circumstances of peculiar difficulty, for a vaulted roof of large span to St. Sepulchre's; and there it is."

Now in spite of all this we remain of our old way of thinking on both these points. The mere fact advanced by the reviewer, of many country churches being built at one period, and consequently free from mixture of style, will not prove them perfect specimens of that style. That our country churches are true types of Gothic, we said required proof, being open to conviction, if such proof were brought forward. The Ecclesiologist deigns to offer none besides the invalid one to which we have just referred: it merely prescribes humility, and tells us to believe that the architects of the thirteenth and fourteenth centuries must have been right in every instance, whether or not we can see that they were so. But this seems to us a mere perversion of humility,-a humility founded on a habit which wer besitate not to denounce as pernicious, wherever and in whatever department of human pursuit it may display itself the habit of setting up oracles. We see one great leading principle of Gothic to consist in the uninterrupted course of vertical lines,*- -we see that

The Ecclesiologist, which is fond of going by mere precedent, may remind us that our country Churches seldom possess vertical lines, and that in consequence

from the development of this principle arises much of the peculiar beauty of the style, and we also see that whereas vaulting accommodates itself to this law, wooden roofs of necessity disobey it. We see all this, and are we to speak and act as if we saw it not? are we to shut our eyes to the deduction that follows, viz., that churches with wooden roofs, however successfully combining many of the beauties, do not exhibit the consistent character of pointed Gothic,in short, are not strictly and harmoniously architectural?

The Ecclesiologist is in favour of judging everything in architecture by precedent and past decision. We contend for æsthetic criticism; and therefore, we are little moved even when cathedrals and minsters are cited against us. We knew perfectly well, though the Ecclesiologist seems to fancy we did not, that there are a few even of them with wooden roofs; but we also knew perfectly well, that even they could not attain the perfection to which they approximated. Generally they have vaulted roofs, and have them not as accidental but integral features in their design. The exceptions, therefore, are but exceptions, and on our principles imperfections.

But to return to the point of difference between ourselves and the Camdenians, in our way of deducing general principles. They go merely by the facts they find,-we by an ideal to which we think those facts never bore any other relation than that of approximations more or less close. In proportion almost to the sublimity and complexity of that ideal, must be the rarity with which we find it fulfilled even in the finest buildings. Thus the predominance of the vertical line is generally acknowledged to be one of the paramount principles of pointed Gothic; and the architectural connexion of the highest point of the roof with the floor, one of the most necessary and beautiful developments of that principle. Yet it is absent in the beautiful naves of Salisbury and Wells, and in the choir of Carlisle. Again, Amiens and the French Cathedrals, though in most respects singularly ripened in their Gothic very generally retain the square abacus, a feature more inconsistent with the idea of vertical extension than would at first be imagined, and the abandonment of which, in this country, forms almost the point of transition between semi-Norman and early English. And if we thus refuse to take even cathedrals as oracular authorities, much more may we set aside village churches. We must repeat our great maxim. The very merit of pointed Gothic architecture demands that we apply to it a loftier criticism than that to which it is commonly subjected; we must use that which we now apply to poetry and the other fine arts. must cite buildings, not because of their date, but because of the extent to which they bring out the great principles of the style which they follow; we must ever keep the Gothic ideal before our minds, and then whilst we admire the close approximation of certain structures


their wooden roofs cannot cut such. The fact is certain, but it supplies us with one argument more against regarding them as types of pointed Gothic.

to that ideal, we shall be saved the confusion of thought and the deadening results incident to those who put them in the place of the ideal, and then quote them as infallible.*

But if vaulted roofs be necessary, as we contend, the Ecclesiologist engages to supply us with them; and appeals to what the Society of which it is the instrument has done in this way, "under circumstances of peculiar difficulty," at St. Sepulchre's, Cambridge. Now, we fully grant that whatever skill and spirit can do, that the Camden Society will do. But be it remembered, that its leading principle is to imitate our old churches to copy them not more in particular details than in general outline-to avoid and eschew modern invention. Well, then, how many models shall we find for parish churches with vaulted roofs? Surely the Temple Church and one or two college chapels will hardly be enough for our guidance all over the country, and in every variety of situation and circumstance. For the mere addition of a vaulted roof to a building, copied in all its proportions from one or from a class in which such a thing was never contemplated, will be any thing but satisfactory. The whole beauty of Gothic vaulting depends on the connexion between the roof and the very lowest part of the interior which it keeps up and 'consummates; and if we mean to vault we must have shafts running up to our roof, and arches in harmony with it. But we are far from saying that this cannot be. In our former article we disclaimed the rashness involved in pronouncing a new form of Gothic to be impossible. But it has not yet appeared, though assuredly only under a new form can parish churches with vaulted roofs become general. Cathedrals will not help us: one great source of mischief already has been the inability of architects to distinguish between the mother church and its dependencies, and their trying to bestow on the latter features which, even were they executed successfully, are appropriate only to the former. If a new style of genuine pointed Gothic be struck out and

This really seems to follow from the principles of the Ecclesiologist; their rebuke to us on the subject of certain country specimens, p. 8. At this rate we must feel bound to admire the gigantic geometrical tracery, or whatever it is to be called, in the intersections of the cross at Wells,-window tracery below the imposts wherever it is of authentic date, and many other defects. This is carrying the principle of veneration very far; but may not the mark be overshot? If people may ask no questions, they will certainly lose their eye for faults; but is there no risk of their perception of beauty getting deadened also? On the other hand, if it be conceded that any monument of the thirteenth and fourteenth centuries can be out of taste, then there is granted, ipso facto, a liberty of inquiring into them all; and if we cannot see any good proportion in short piers and arches of unequal width, we have a right to wait till the Ecclesiologist has rectified our perceptions before we admit that there is such proportion. One of the noblest churches in a neighbouring county, has side aisles wider than the nave. Must we believe this to be right? or will the fact of the church in question being perpendicular, (a style which we think is most unjustly made to bear the blame of its later corruptions,) get us out of the difficulty?

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