« SebelumnyaLanjutkan »
day of the week, in the morning, with some of his friends, to Nottingham, to have a meeting there, and having seen from the top of a hill the great steeple-house of the town, he felt it required of him to cry against that idol-temple, and the worshippers therein.” He “went away to the steeple-house,” and cried accordingly ; whereupon “the officers came and took him, and put him into a nasty, stinking prison.” “Having been kept in prison a pretty long time,” he “was at length set at liberty, and then travelled as before in the work of the Lord.” On his release, he cured with his word “a distracted woman,” when “the doctor, being about to let her blood, could get no blood from her,” and then “was moved to go to the steeple-house, and declare there the truth to the priest and the people; which doing, the people fell upon him, and struck him down, almost smothering him, for he was cruelly beaten and bruised with their hands, Bibles, and sticks; then they haled him out, though hardly able to stand, and put him into the stocks, where he sat some hours.” At twenty-five years of age, – poor and unlearned, contemplative and ambitious, with a sturdy frame and an inflexible will, - Fox was now fairly engaged. His tongue was against every man, and — as might naturally follow, even in less agitated times than that in which he lived—every man's hand was against him. With all the rhetoric of invective supplied by his good knowledge of colloquial English, – a dialect not deficient in resources for that use, – he berated the priests of all descriptions and their followers, choosing the steeple-houses and the hours of service for the places and times of his remonstrances. To his “friends,” the “priests,” he wrote, that “as Jannes and Jambres withstood Moses, so did they resist the truth, being men of corrupt minds;” and he advised his “friends,” the magistrates, to “weep and howl for their misery that should come.” While a justice of the peace was signing a mittimus for his detention after one of these exercises, “Fox bade him and those about him “tremble at the word of the Lord.’” The magistrate “took hold of this weighty saying with such an airy mind, that from thence he took occasion to call him and his friends scornfully Quakers. This new and unusual denomination was taken up so eagerly, and spread so among the people, that not only the priests there from that time gave no other name to the Professors of the Light, but sounded it so gladly abroad that it soon ran over all England.” Such a temper as Fox's suited the temper of the times in which he began his movement. If his doctrine was somewhat misty and unsatisfying,” his stout English courage admitted of no question. Just as one of his terms of imprisonment was about to expire, the arrangements were making for Cromwell's second campaign against the Scots; and, “there being many new soldiers raised, the commissioners would have had George Fox captain over them, and the soldiers cried they would have none but him ; ” but he told them “that he lived in the virtue of that life and power that took away the occasion of all wars.” His enterprise had a mighty fascination for men who, after their successful practice with the chivalry of England, found in themselves a reserve of still unused love of conflict. One of his early converts was “Lieutenant-Colonel John Lilburn, r..... an extraordinary bold man, very stiff and inflex- tary conible.” After being whipped and set in the pillory " for a libel upon the bishops, Lilburn had become one of the best officers of the civil war. Having helped to beat the King, he turned upon the Parliament, who had him 1849. arraigned for treason. He was acquitted, but was o banished by a Parliamentary Ordinance, which 3.20. threatened him with death, if he should return. 1653. He returned, was tried for this offence, and was ** again acquitted, greatly to the disgust of Cromwell, who then confined him in Dover Castle." There he fell in with a disciple of Fox, who converted him ; and he passed his last years as a Quaker preacher, though it was some time before he was “fully convinced that to refrain the use of the carnal sword was the duty of a true Christian.” Of others who became eminent Quaker apostles, Richard Hubberthorn and William Ames had been officers in the Parliament's army; and Ames had been so benighted, “that, when any soldier under his colors had been guilty of any immorality on a first day of the week, he presently had him bound neck and heels.” James Naylor, “a man of excellent natural parts, . . . . . so that many came to receive the truth by his ministry,” had been “Quarter-Master in MajorGeneral Lambert's troop in Scotland.”” spranora. In the fourth year of the Commonwealth "la. there were twenty-five preachers of Fox's doctrine. Two years later, the number had increased to sixty. The messengers of the new dispensation now looked abroad for a larger sphere of labor. Evangelists went first to Scotland, and in the next year to Ireland;” and that course of operations was energetically entered upon, which soon carried the proclamation of this eccentric faith to the northern, eastern, and western regions of Continental Europe, to the Vatican palace, to the camp of the Grand Seignior, and to the islands of the sea. For “a meeting-place” a large hall was taken at the Bull and Mouth Inn in London." With the increase of the Quakers in number, and the extension of their plans for proselyting, the sect and its opponents became more excited. “By the priests and teachers of several sects abundance of books were now spread against the Quakers, as seducers and false prophets,” while ready Quaker pens “did not suffer those writings to go unanswered, but clearly showed the malice and absurdities of those writers.” At the same time, neither courts of justice nor mobs it, option were idle. Bristol, Norwich, and Oxford were ** among the places specially complained of. At Bristol, two preachers “were assaulted by the rabble,” who “violently abused them with beating, kicking, and a continual cry, “Knock them down, “Kill them, or ‘Hang them presently.’” They replied with expostulations uttered “in zeal;” and “this instigated the rabble to that degree, that now they thought they had full liberty to use all kind of insolence against the said people, beating, smiting, pushing, and often treading upon them, till blood was shed; for they were become a prey to every malapert fellow, as a people that were without the protection of the law.”* The magistrates took the business in hand, and committed them to prison as Romish emisjo, saries; for, strange to say, this opinion of them ** had obtained no little currency and credit." Some of the “abundance of books’ in this controversy must have soon reached New England, and with them some rumors of the acts and purposes of the new sect, —rumors not weakened in their unpleasant import by the distance they had travelled.” In the same year in which the written arraignments and apologies of Quakerism began to multiply, treatises “under the names of John Reeves and Ludovick Muggleton, who pretended themselves to be the two last witnesses
* Sewel, History, &c., 19–21.
* Sewel, History, &c., 24; comp. 572. was rather the fabric of his successors,
* In fact, Fox can scarcely be said Penn and Barclay. to have taught any scheme of faith. “Ibid., 37, 38, 119; comp. Carlyle, The dogmatic system of Quakerism Oliver Cromwell, I. 200, 240.
VOL. II. 39
* During the time of Cromwell's as- Trials, II. 19 et seq., VII. 354 et seq.; cendency, no agitator gave him more Thurloe, Collection of State Papers, trouble than Lilburn. The two trials I. 367, 429, III. 512.) The issue of in which he was acquitted are among the latter trial, particularly, caused the most memorable instances of the Cromwell extreme chagrin. courage of juries, to be found in the his- * Sewel, History, &c., 87,106,107,134. tory of English jurisprudence. (State "Ibid., 61, 78, 91.
* Sewel, History, &c. 82.
* Ibid., 135, 136. Comp. 83. — No place was more savage against the Quakers than Bristol; and — whether this is to be considered cause or effect —it was one of the places which they chose for their most disagreeable demonstrations. James Naylor, a person of such consideration that, in letters of one of his friends, he was addressed as “The Everlasting Son of Righteousness, Prince of Peace, The Only Begotten Son of God, The Fairest of Ten Thousand,” &c., rode into Bristol, with
a man walking bareheaded before him, and a woman leading his horse, while three others spread their scarfs and handkerchiefs before him, and the company sang, “Holy, Holy is the Lord God of Hosts; Hosannah in the Highest; Holy, Holy, Holy is the Lord God of Israel.” It should be mentioned, however, that the private opinion of the Quaker historian was, that “J. Naylor was clouded in his understanding in all this transaction,” though “it pleased God, in his infinite mercy, to raise him up again.” Fox, who, in his way, was
a Diotrephes, and “loved to have the
came from Rome, as aforesaid,” &c.