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cessions, to receive the divided members of Christendom into one Church; and Massillon, by practical discipline in his diocese, put down many of those profane observances and disgraceful processions which had sprung up in the Gallican Church. He issued an order for their suppression, and a tumult was created, which none could quell till Massillon himself brought into good service that power of producing silence which was the attribute of his eloquence. He calmed the multitude, and gained his end. The people of his diocese adored him; they hailed him as he passed by them, with 'Long live our Father and, as if to prove how true this greeting was, they mourned his loss with many touching tokens of regret. He died in 1742, ' as a bishop should die, without money, and without debts."

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The biographical notice before us concludes with some interesting criticisms, of the same character that we met with in Bossuet's Memoirs, on the comparative merits of Bourdaloue and Massillon. Various analogous conjunctions of names are again brought forward, such as putting Massillon in the same relation to Bourdaloue as Cicero was in to Demosthenes, and Racine to Corneille, but these are wisely rejected as useless parallels, and a few impartial comments made on the different circumstances of each. When Bourdaloue appeared, the pulpit,' it is said, 'was still barbarous, vying with the theatre in buf'foonery, and with the scholar in dryness. The Jesuit, there'fore, as preceding Massillon, would naturally acquire the 'greater glory at the time, in establishing a more worthy style of preaching. He who first pulls up the thorns, gains the 'greatest celebrity.' Now, however, that we are far removed from the circumstances of their respective lives, there is no doubt that Massillon is the more general favourite, and that it is popularly considered the greatest glory of Bourdaloue that the preeminence of the other is disputed. Bourdaloue,' our writer says, is only read by preachers and by pious souls,' that is, for devotion and instruction, while all read Massillon. In point of quantity, the latter exceeded: but here it must be remembered that Bourdaloue stood a greater test than the others, inasmuch as he preached for a much greater length of time before the Court, which then was the acutest audience in France. He preached at the Court for thirty-four years, while Massillon was only very occasionally at Versailles, and left Paris altogether when in the prime of life. Voltaire, we are informed, took Massillon as his model of prose writing, and had on his table the Petit Carême by the side of Athalie, which was his favourite poem. Massillon, it is said, once failed in remembering his sermon, when preaching before Louis XIV. Making a short pause, the king said to him, It is well that you pause,

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in order that we may dwell on the fine and useful things you have told us.' After this he was accustomed to read his sermons; and so much stress did he wisely lay on ease of delivery, that when asked which of his sermons he thought were best, he replied, those which he knew best.'

Even with this short notice of the three great preachers, Bossuet, Bourdaloue, and Massillon-for our author takes no notice of him who was contemporaneous with the two first, we mean the celebrated Fléchier-we think it must be clear that they earned their name by most worthy and legitimate means, and that they fully deserve to be classed as a school of sermonwriting, which all ages would benefit themselves by studying. Studying we say; for let us protest against young divines translating and preaching these sermons as they stand. Much of their aroma is lost in translation: an English congregation is not the French Court; and, with all their excellences, they betray the artist and science of composition. English taste, as well as English needs, require something more plain, didactic, and personal. Besides, the lapse of a century, or a century and a half, makes a vast change in the requirements of the pulpit. Still, let these great preachers be studied. The brilliant genius of Bossuet, full of similes and figures-the real substance and method of Bourdaloue-with the finished oratory of Massillon, would be a course of study that could not fail to improve any one's preaching, especially when the whole lives of these literary models are known to have been also most bright examples of different vocations in the Church of Christ. The principal object of study, for practical use, would, we feel sure, be Bourdaloue. He was the preacher by profession. His sermons are a perfect mine of fresh and beautiful ideas, and of grandly displayed theological truths. Take, for instance, his sermon on the Passion, before alluded to, where he proves the cross to have been the triumph of the power of the Son of God. In reading that sermon, there is nothing to prepare one for anything grand. He begins in a quiet, scholar-like manner; with great method and order, he lays out the plan of his sermon; he exhibits no marks of dashing off a brilliant piece, in a fit of enthusiasm: but, after reading for a short time, a vivid and a striking picture dawns upon one which can never be forgotten. The Cross, as it were, stands out before one's mind, covered with high trophies of honour and glory, taken from every age of revelation, and every narrative that is told us in Scripture as past or to come. The prophets, in foretelling of the Cross, all contribute to the power of Him who died on it. His own foreknowledge, and His own willing submission to the pains of leath, increase also, under this description, beyond all human

appreciation, that glory which could both create the highest wonder of divine truth, and also, at the same time, be the passive victim of its operation. Bossuet's style is eminently intellectual, but often rather too metaphysical for popular comprehension. He is a deep prober into self-deception, and seems to turn the human heart completely inside out, in portraying how crafty and insidious are the many forms of deception. Yet even these sermons are based on such a sound philosophy, and there are in them so many simple appeals to real goodness of heart, that the metaphysical parts are cleared up, and the whole rendered brilliant by a series of vivid pictures. In his sermon on the text, I delight in the law of God after the inward man,' the real depth of his philosophy is worthy of our own Bishop Butler, though clothed in more easy and attractive language. The law of God in the inward man is described as analogous, in the first instance, with the law which every other creature must have for its own guidance, with this difference, however, that man's law is a ray of divine light, which he, having an intelligent spirit, may see, and by which he may freely direct himself. The mystery of illumination, which baptism is called, renews this inward law, and makes it to be within us a kind of mirror, into which we should ever be looking to see our true nature. He then describes the many ways in which people, on the one hand, deceiving themselves, before they will look into this mirror, dress themselves up in false colours; and, on the other hand, dreading their own deformity as seen by themselves, deface the mirror itself, and violently corrupt its purity as a clear reflection of the plain word of God.

Bourdaloue treats the subject of self-deception in another and characteristic manner. In his sermon on Christian and Pharisaic severity, he draws most wonderful pictures of false severity. He does not accomplish his end by brilliant similes or figures, but by a number of earnestly-stated reflections, and well-drawn descriptions of many kinds of severity, such as outward discipline, the frequent use of the confessional, fasting, the pride of a moral life, &c., in which many self-willed persons find a substitute for that noble devotion, which really offers up, in true severity, the secret inclinations of the heart, the inward pride of reason, and the love of self. The sermons of Bourdaloue are blamed for their many divisions and subdivisions, and for their exact and studied method. In him this was necessary, otherwise the prodigious variety of matter would have created only confusion of mind in the hearers. The sermons, again, are much longer than we are now accustomed to hear, and therefore would naturally require several breaks and changes to keep up attention. Subdivisions are intolerable when there is no subject

matter in the first instance to divide: but, used as they are by Bourdaloue, we think that they give a peculiar dignity to the opening of the sermon. What, moreover, are objected to by M. Bungener, as too refined subdivisions, are not such at all, but only different ways of conveying the ideas of his main divisions. As an extreme instance, he gives the following scheme of his sermon on final impenitence:

The first die in a state of actual impenitence; the second, without any feeling of penitence; the last, in the delusion of a false penitence. The first are the most criminal, the second the most unhappy; the third are neither so criminal as the first, nor so unhappy as the second; they are, however, unhappy because they are blinded, and criminal because they are sinners. I shall accordingly, call the impenitence of the first, a criminal impenitence, that of the second, an unhappy impenitence,-that of the third, a disguised impenitence. And after having delineated these three characters, I shall add three reflections. An impenitent life conducts to criminal impenitence at death, by the way of inclination; this is my first part. An impenitent life conducts to unhappy impenitence at death, by the way of punishment; this is my second division. An impenitent life conducts to disguised impenitence at death, by the way of deception; this is my third division.'-Ibid. pp. 57, 58.

Now first: this translation, though fair on the whole, is still expressed with peculiar bareness, and no judgment can be formed without reading the previous introduction to this briefly laid down plan. In the original sermon, this passage comes naturally enough, and does not astonish the reader with the same appearance of intricacy which it is here made to assume. Apart, however, from this question, it is evident that there are after all no subdivisions here given. He starts with three main divisions, and is anxious that a distinct idea should be impressed on the minds of his hearers, as to each of these three heads, which are to be brought before them. He therefore repeats that one idea in different words; he does not however subdivide it. In his noble sermon on the Holy Trinity, he follows out the same method with a most happy effect. After giving out the text, In the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Ghost,' he opens in this striking yet simple manner, Behold, Christian, in three words the summary of our faith, the foundation of our religion, the mark of our profession, the most august of our mysteries.' After a solemn exordium on the grandeur of the subject, he then, that he may speak usefully,' lays down three propositions, i. e., three ideas which are to be worked out in the three main parts of his sermon. First, that the profession of this faith is the most glorious act we can render to God; second, that it is the most solid foundation of our hopes; and, thirdly, that it is the bond of charity which ought to exist among the faithful. Here are three ideas, and

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he then proceeds, not to subdivide them, but to explain them a second time, and to look at them from a different light. The first, he says, will show us what we do for God, the second what we do for ourselves, and the third what we ought to do for each other. He even does this again, describing the first as the greatest homage of faith, the second the greatest subject of confidence, and the third the most powerful motive to charity. In following out this sermon, we are no more involved in the subject of division, except to announce the opening of each of these parts. No subdivisions even then occur-but each idea is worked out in a plain and natural manner, and in this sermon especially, with the greatest beauty. Each of these parts would form a sermon of the length common among ourselves, and in this there would occur not a single formally stated division. Sermons on Trinity Sunday, in our own Church, are often dreaded as especially dull: but it is Bourdaloue's art to rise with the dignity of his subject, and to give a singular interest to what may be thought dogmatic statements. He associates the names of the Sacred Trinity with each most solemn period of life, and each act of our love to God. He shows these Names to be a very part of our Christian life, and with an awful pathos, pictures the last offices of the Church over the dying, when these Holy Names are then all in all.

The conclusion which M. Bungener draws from this alleged refinement of divisions, is as follows:

It is accordingly not astonishing, that he has such difficulty in learning his sermons, such fear of losing a single word. Pages written in this way must be memorized like the Lord's Prayer. Let a single idea escape you, -all is lost; drop a single link, and you are at a loss where to take it up again. From this course proceeds the inexpressible anguish, which our illustrious friend never fails to experience until he reaches the last word of his sermon. His eyes almost always closed, his motions uneasy,-his sentences too fast or too slow,-his gestures often unsuited to his subject,everything betrays the prodigious effort of memory which is an actual torture to himself, and to those who are so unfortunate as to perceive it. Moreover, he does not attempt to conceal it from himself; he submits to it, as the sailor to his oar, and the peasant to his plough. It is not until after he has preached the same discourse several times, that he begins to be confident, and himself to join a little in the pleasure which his words confer upon us.'-Ibid. pp. 58, 59.

We can only make one comment on this statement, which is, that we neither believe in the causes or the result here described, any more than we believe that he preached with his eyes shut, because his portrait was taken after his death.

Bourdaloue's style is one to inspire a fatherly confidence in his hearers. All his little apostrophes and reflections, his epithets of affection, his addresses to Sacred Persons, are all introduced with singular skill, or rather with the eloquence of

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