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Northern imagination was less tied down, and its deities were able far more freely to represent the universal combat of good and evil, the wily arts by which evil for a time could triumph, its fall, its recovery, the destruction and consummation of all things. But as Christianity was at hand to satisfy— if it did not form-all the better longings of the Teuton, it is to Greece that we turn for that literature that shows how great minds strove to mould wild old tradition to express their sense of Divine Justice, their cravings for the vanished light, their lament over the sadness of things around. To our minds it seems as if, while the favoured race of Shem was directed by God himself to the truth, and the few intellectual sons of the accursed race were guided by the devil to the foul worship that prevailed among the Canaanites, the race of Japhet was left to its own devices, and according to the theory already mentioned, formed to themselves dreams and myths out of the phenomena of nature. The main fact seems established beyond a doubt by the students of Vedic hymns, that the sky, the sun, the earth, the dawn, the twilight, the clouds, the winds, and the rain, had an infinity of names, and were spoken of in perpetually recurring parables of homely pastoral life, such as fanciful children may be heard to use when watching the clouds or the shapes in the fire. One cloud was a golden fleece, which was lost at night, and brought back from the east at morning; the clouds were cows, gathered into their fold, or stolen by the merry morning breeze, and reconquered by the sun, or they were sieves in which maidens were forced for ever to carry water, no doubt as a terrible punishment for some great offence; or the sun was a hero coming forth as a bridegroom out of his chamber, and rejoicing as a giant to run his course, contending with the storm and cold, his enemies, and sinking to rest or to death, however fancy might paint his setting. Etymology and comparison have established many of the classical imaginations to be grounded on those daily appearances. Names clumsily explained by the Greeks and Romans, who had forgotten their real derivation, are easily cleared up by comparison with the Sanskrit, as, for instance, Herme with Sarama, the dawn or morning wind; and many a foul and ridiculous or horrible fable that blackened the character of the gods and heroes, and perplexed good men, is resolved into a simple parable of nature. And in the zest of these discoveries, as we before said, we think the other sources of ancient faith are too entirely forgotten, and primæval tradition, sense of abstract combat between good and evil, and sheer actual fact are all disregarded in the desire to trace every legend to a simple source, namely, the atmospherical fancies of the Aryans before they dispersed.

Each attempt is one-sided, because it is not sufficiently taken into account that the whole universe, moral and physical, is one great allegory, and has been so ever since the Creation and the Fall. What needs it to contend that the dragon slayer is not the seed of the Woman bruising the Serpent's Head, but Day slaying Night, when sunrise out of darkness is the daily type of the First-born, the Son of Righteousness-the Seed of the Woman rising from the Night of Death, having won the victory.

The outward creation is the allegory of the inner and higher world, and the parable fashioned of the one speaks of the other. Nor does a fact being an allegory destroy its materiality as a historical truth. The deluge, the bond-woman cast out, the Israelite wanderings, are typical, but none the less are they facts. Our allegories are surfaces; God's allegories are like His City, foursquare, and solid truth. Revelation, creation, history, nature, mind, all have the same truths to tell; therefore it is no wonder that they should often coincide, and that in the marvellous froth of imaginations left to us by the seething aspirations of past ages, it should be hard to place each bubble to its right account.

In fact; we are but at the beginning of the work. Hitherto the question has only been treated either in a narrow or fragmentary manner, nor have materials yet been fully collected. We hope, however, that some great mind may yet give us a grand and instructive comparative Aryan Mythology, separating primitive religion from atmospheric parable, marking the influence of national character, distinguishing the probably historical facts, and showing which legends and observances pertinaciously have kept their hold upon different countries, with the modifications that they have received from Christianity, and Christianity from them. Such a work as this would be Mr. Caxton's famous History of Error, but it would also be a history of the struggles of truth, and to collect materials for such a structure is the real object of all records of folk-lore.


ART. III.-Joannis Scoti Opera quæ supersunt omnia. Partem primus edidit, partem recognovit, HENRICUS JOSEPHUS FLOSS, SS. Theol. et Ph. Dr. Excud. apud J. P. MIGNE. Lutetiæ Paris: 1865.

WITHOUT doubt, Joannes Scotus, the learned Irishman of the ninth century, is the most conspicuous literary figure in what are called the Dark Ages. His acquaintance with Greek, his bold speculative mind, his friendship with the King of France, his travels, his various and elaborate writings, all give deep interest to his history. The Abbé Migne has perhaps done no greater service to the cause of theological and patristic learning, than by giving to the world a complete edition of his writings, edited with great care, and containing much that had never been printed before.

We do not, however, propose in the present article to address ourselves to the consideration of the whole subject of the life and writings of Joannes, to which this learned volume invites us, but to confine ourselves to certain points in the preface of Dr. Floss, which involve a question of much theological interest.

In an article on Berengar of Tours, in a former number of this Review,' we expressed our agreement with the opinion that the Treatise on the Eucharist, usually ascribed to Bertram, or Ratramn, a monk of Corbey, was in reality the book of John Scot, to which allusion is so often made in the controversy of the eleventh century. This opinion, which had been held by several of the learned in France, Dr. Floss notices and states very fairly. But at the same time he condemns it as untenable. We think, however, that we shall be able to show, on the very grounds given by the Doctor, not only that it is not untenable, but that it is certainly true.

In order, however, to exhibit the importance which this question assumes in the history of doctrine, it will be needful in the first place to inquire into the beginning of the Eucharistic controversy, and to trace out the earliest teaching of that materialistic theory, against which John Scot wrote, and which Berengar afterwards spent his life in combating.

Between the era of the Fathers and the era of the Schoolmen lies a great gulf of at least three or four centuries, which men are wont to designate, as it were in despair, The Dark Ages. Do we use this disparaging epithet because these ages knew nothing, or because we know nothing of them? Robert

1 Christian Remembrancer,' April 1866.

son will complacently encourage us in the former view, while Dr. Maitland, with a striking array of out-of-the-way bits of information, will strongly uphold the latter. The truth, as usual, lies between the two extremes. We don't know much of these ages, but this is a good deal occasioned by there not being much to know. Something, however, without doubt, there is to know. What was the intervening process which transformed the theology of the Fathers into the theology of the Schoolmen? What were the conditions under which Christianity became materialized, and, as it were, vulgarized? How did the great opus operatum, mechanical theory of salvation spring up, increase, and dominate until it swallowed up all spiritualism? To answer these questions-to strike the fountain-head of momentous controversies, reaching down to our own time-we must approach the Dark Ages, for in them the system, which we sometimes designate in one word as Mediævalism, began. This system, which, while it reverentially employed itself upon the Fathers, nevertheless misunderstood and degraded themthis system, thoroughly human and carnal, yet powerful and complete-reappears with renewed vigour at the present day, and challenges our closest scrutiny as to its origin.

In investigating the Dark Ages, a natural inquiry presents itself. At what precise period did the greatest obscurity prevail? M. Guizot will tell us that in the seventh century is to be placed the lowest point which the intellect of Modern Europe has reached.1 The Benedictine historians fix the zero of intelligence for France a little further on. According to them, the early part of the eighth century is the period as to which those best acquainted with antiquity are agreed 'that it was the darkest, the most barbarous, and the most 'ignorant age that has ever been seen in France.' 2

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France, says Mr. Hallam, reached the lowest point of de'cadence at the beginning of the eighth century, but England 'was at that time more respectable, and did not fall into com'plete degradation till the middle of the ninth. There could 'be nothing more deplorable than the state of letters in Italy 'during the succeeding century.' But, even at the darkest of these dark periods, was the ignorance absolute, and the stagnation of all thought and power of expression complete? Assuredly not. M. Guizot, who has employed himself in ascertaining the time of the deepest obscurity, has well shown that the notion so commonly entertained as to the absolute ignorance of these ages, is altogether erroneous. From the sixth to the ninth century there was a considerable literary activity in existence, Histoire de la Civilisation en France, ii. 171.

2 Histoire Littéraire de France, iv. 4. 3 History of Middle Ages, ii. 352.


even in France, only it was of a certain sort, and confined to certain localities. Its character was essentially religious, its local habitation was the cloister. All value for profane studies ceased with the fall of the Western Empire and the triumph of the barbarians. But the barbarians themselves were quickly subdued by that Christian faith which had taken firm hold of the lands which they had conquered. The great municipal schools of Treves, Poictiers, Vienne, and Bordeaux, disappear; but in their place spring up the Cathedral and Episcopal schools. In these, rhetoric, dialectic, grammar, and geography were taught in subordination to theology. The studies produced no literature properly so called, but they produced and fostered a considerable mental activity. One is astonished,' says M. Guizot, after having heard and thought that this pe'riod was utterly barren, to find on looking closer, a world, so to 'speak, of writings,-of no great value, it is true, but which, 'by their number and spirit, prove the existence of a singular activity and productiveness.' An immense mass of sermons, expositions of Scripture, lives of saints, and even poems, belongs to this period. This literature has not possessed sufficient vitality from its intrinsic merit to hold a place in the estimation of Modern Europe. Lost sight of between the great works of the Fathers and the ingenious speculations of the Schoolmen, it seems to leave the intermediate age altogether blank. But in the disturbed and chaotic state of civil society which then prevailed, the cloister, with its comparative security, its life of ease and quietude, invited many to religious thought and religious writing. Formed on false models, with but little insight into human nature, and no knowledge of the world, these writings never could challenge attention on their own merits, but simply as records in the history of human thought. As such they are valuable and instructive. This is a time not of speculation, but of adaptation. The grand teaching of the Fathers is brought down to suit the state of opinion and knowledge then prevalent in the Church. The spiritual expressions, the high thoughts of those great Christian philosophers, are materialized and degraded. The narrow intellects of semi-barbarous recluses could not enter into the real mind of a Jerome, an Augustine, or an Ambrose. A transforming process was applied to their doctrines, and, as has been well remarked, there is an abyss between the theology of the five first centuries, which had its birth in the bosom of Roman society, and the theology of the Middle Age, which was produced from the bosom of the Christian Church. During this period there are no writers indi

1 Guizot, Civilisation, ii. 343.

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