Page images
[ocr errors][merged small][merged small]

they being but few, and there appearing nothing so extraordinary in the composure of them, as is found in his Lordship’s other labours, they have not obtained an earlier mention. They are only these :“ His Confession of Faith, written by himself in English, and turned into Latin by Dr. Rawley, (a) the questions about an Holy War, and the Prayers, in these Remains ; (c) and a translation of certain of David's Psalms into English verse. With this last pious exercise he diverted himself in the time of his sickness, in the year twenty-five. When he sent it abroad into the world, he made a dedication of it to his good friend, Mr. George Herbert, for he judged the argument to be suitable to him, in his double quality of a divine and a poet.”

In the life of Lord Bacon, by Dr. Rawley, “ his lordship's first and last chaplain,” as he always proudly entitles himself, there is the following passage: “ This lord was religious: for though the world be apt to suspect and prejudge great wits and politics to have somewhat of the Atheist, yet he was

(a) 1658, in the Opuscula.

(c) Baconiana 72. In p. 99, Tenison says, “ Under the fourth head of Theological Remains are contained only a few questions about the lawfulness of a holy war; and two prayers, one for a philosophical student, the other for a writer. The substance of these two prayers is extant in Latin in the Organon, p. 19, ad Calc partis primæ, and Scripta, p. 451, and after title page. See postea of this preface vii.

In page 181, of Baconiana, are the Students and Writers Prayers.-See this vol. page 7.

conversant with God, as appeareth by several passages throughout the whole current of his writings ; otherwise he should have crossed his own principles which were, “that a little philosophy maketh men apt to forget God, as attributing too much to second causes ; but depth of philosophy bringeth men back to God again.' Now I am sure there is no man that will deny him, or account otherwise of him, but to have him been a deep philosopher. And not only so, but he was able to render a reason of the hope which was in him, which that writing of his, of the confession of the faith, doth abundantly testify. He repaired frequently (when his health would permit him) to the service of the Church; to hear sermons ;. to the administration of the sacrament of the blessed body and blood of Christ; and died in the true faith established in the Church of England.”

The passage to which Dr. Rawley alludes, is in the “Advancement of Learning,"(d, where he says,“ It is an assured truth, and a conclusion of experience, that a little or superficial knowledge of philosophy may incline the mind of man to Atheism, but a farther proceeding therein doth bring the mind back again to religion ; for in the entrance of philosophy, when the second causes, which are next unto the senses, do offer themselves to the mind of man, if it dwell and stay there, it may induce some oblivion of the highest cause ; but when a man passeth on farther, and seeth the dependence of

(d) Vol. II. p. 13.

« PreviousContinue »