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latter term, however, to which quibus refers, should have been « Acts.” The translator was led into this error by his lamentable want of accurate information on the subjects which he undertook to elucidate. In the Introduction to this Historical Preface, he has given the following ample explanation of his very original views of the misconceived and mistranslated word: “In perusing “ this Preface and the History contained in it, the reader should “ especially recollect, that it was drawn up and published by the “ authority and with the sanction of the States General and the “ Prince of Orange, as well as by that of the Synod itself; and “ that, in every part of it, the Acts, or public records in which “ the events recorded were registered, are referred to with the “ exact dates of each transaction. No History can therefore be “ attested as authentic, in a more satisfactory and unexception“able manner: For, whatever degree of colouring prejudices or “partiality may be supposed to have given to the narration, it
can hardly be conceived, that collective bodies and individuals “ filling up such conspicuous and exalted stations would ex“pressly attest any thing directly false, and then appeal to “ authorities by which the falsehood of their statement might at any time be detected and exposed.”
I cannot anticipate the surprise of the impartial reader, when he is made acquainted with the plain facts of the case, which is thus artfully mystified. “ The Acts,” that Mr. Scott here attempts to magnify into “ Public Records in which the events recorded were registered,” were nothing more than those portions of the public proceedings of the Synod of Dort, which, after much polishing and alteration, it was deemed proper to publish ; and the word “ tabulis" which Mr. Scott has rendered by the convertible terms “ Records” and “ Registers,” were nothing more than the written Journals of the Synod's proceedings, which were composed at intervals BETWEEN or DURING the different sessions, and which were afterwards abridged and modified with great labour, by the secretaries themselves, into what are here called “the Acts!"-If, therefore, either of these, the original or the copy, had “ attested any thing directly false," an APPEAL from the one to the other would only be an “ appeal” from the Synodical Journal to its Abridgment, or vice versá, and not “ to AUTHORITIES by which the falsehood of their statement might at any time be detected and exposed.” For, these Journals of the Calvinistic secretaries, which had been got up in a most objectionable manner, were by no means
« Public RECORDS;" and no place was ever appointed in which they might be deposited for purposes of reference.
But every Latin scholar, on inspecting the language of Heinsius, which Mr. Scott has dreadfully mangled as well by his interpolations as by his attempts at translation, will at once perceive, that the original phraseology applies solely to the “ Acis” themselves, that is, to the ex-parle account which the Calvinists published of the proceedings of the Synod at each of their sessions ; and that it cannot, without wilful force, be so interpreted as to relate at all to those “ Public REGISTERS” or Records,” which Mr. Scott has at last, by means of his artful comments, made to signify “the Historical Preface” translated by himself into English. This perversion of the obvious meaning of the Latin words will be evident even to a common English reader, after he has perused the subjoined sentence, which immediately follows that already quoted from Mr. Scott, (p. cxlii,) and in which the first mention occurs of this Historical Preface, here correctly said to be an abridgment of the Brief Narrative of the affairs transacted with the Remonstrants, which Narrative had been at first composed by the deputies of the South Holland Churches, that is, by the most rigid Supralapsarians in Europe. And as in these [Records is Mr. Scott's interpolation, when the relative belongs solely to the SYNODICAL Acts,] “many things everywhere “ occur, which pertain to the history of the things transacted in “ the Belgick Churches, and which could less advantageously be “ understood or judged of, by readers who were ignorant of these “ things: For which cause, even the National Synod (as it may “ be seen in the different sessions,) sometimes enjoined, especially “ on the deputies of the South Holland Churches, to write a brief “ narrative of the affairs transacted with the Remonstrants: It “ seemed good to prefix, in the place of a Preface, from it (that “ History) some things which were publickly transacted, that the a foreign churches especially might for once know, with good “ fidelity, what was the rise and progress of these controversies, and “ on what occasion and for what causes the illustrious and most “ mighty the States General convened this celebrated Synod at
a very great expence."-Such, in Mr. Scott's own version of “ the Historical Preface,” is the real origin of that document: What a difference between it and the splendid account which I have already quoted, (p. cxliii,) from his Introduction to the translation !
In elevating this obsolete PREFACE to a height to which, in all previous Calvinistic aspirings, it had never before been raised, Mr. Scott informs his readers, (p, cxliii,)“ that it was drawn up " and published by the authority and with the sanction of the “ States General and the Prince of Orange, as well as by that “ of the Synod itself.”—This assertion is not correct, as it regards even the States General and the Prince of Orange, in the sense in which Mr. Scott composed it. Every one conversant with that vast collection of Predestinarian documents, knows the mystery involved in the signatures of their High Mightinesses, and the reasons why they were appended to the Canons of the Synod, while they were purposely with-held from other equally-important portions: The verbiage of the Historical Preface itself, on this point, betrays the wariness of the Dutch rulers, who never gave it the sanction of their names, and did not intend to render it such an authentic exposition of their domestic occurrences as its translator has been willing to suppose.—But the assertion is still more incorrect as it regards “ the Synod itself,” if this term include the foreign divines as well as the provincial. For it was the subsequent work of a very small portion of the hot-headed Dutchmen, who could not obtain leave, from the States General, for its being printed till it had been wonderfully softened down, and had undergone numerous emendations.-All these three parties, however, gave their sanction to another Preface, that prefixed to the Canons in the same work, which, it is scarcely possible, for a particular reason which will be afterwards mentioned, that Mr. Scott can have mistaken for their approbation of the Historical Preface. - The latter stands, therefore, as a violent political manifesto, drawn up at first by a few pragmatical divines, and abridged and polished in its style by Heinsius, to answer party-purposes among foreigners. Indeed, a gleam of Mr. Scott's native good sense, in the very next page, has given him a correct view of the nature of this Preface. Forgetting what he had previously said, about its being “ A HISTORY" which could not be " attested as authentic in a more satisfactory and unexceptionable manner,” he subsequently tenders us the following information : “ It is drawn up with a degree of calmness and “ moderation, far different from that fierce and fiery zeal which “ is generally supposed to belong to all who profess, or are sus“pected of, what many, in a very vague and inappropriate sense, “call CALVINISM. And though, according to the fashion of those «« times, epithets are, in some instances, applied, both to men “ and opinions, which modern courtesy, nay, perhaps, Christian “ meekness would have suppressed ; yet, if I mistake not, they “are more sparingly employed in this than in any contemporary “ controversial publication."
This is a dreadful falling off indeed: Our AUTHENTIC HisTORY, “ attested by collective bodies, and individuals filling up such conspicuous and exalted stations,” dwindles all at once into a paltry “CONTROVERSIAL PUBLICATION !” But had Mr. Scott known the character of these “individuals in exalted stations,” he would not have prided himself on “the authority and sanction of the States General and the Prince of Orange,” if they had been really obtained in the sense in which he intended his assertion to be understood. By a perusal of the note in page 586, it will be seen, that Prince Maurice, and his newly-elected States General, then stood exactly in the same circumstances in Holland, as Cromwell and his mongrel Parliament afterwards did in England, with this single extenuating fact in the Dutchman's favour--that he had not murdered the sovereign as well as the constitution of his country
II.-Like many other of his eccentric illustrations, Mr. Scott has inadvertently furnished his readers in the next page of the translation, with a proof of the increasing ambition of Prince Maurice, and of the political subserviency of his re-formed States General. It is in the shape of one of Maclaine's attempted cora, rections of Mosheim, in these words: “It was not by the au. “ thority of Prince Maurice, but by that of the States General, « that the National Synod was assembled at Dordrecht.” It is not improbable, that Mosheim derived his information from the Preface to the Canons; the first edition of which, under the title Judicium Synodi Nationalis, habitæ Dordrechti, de Quinque Doctrinæ Capitibus in Ecclesiis Belgicis Controversis, was printed separately, twelve months prior to the appearance of the bulky “ Acts” of that Synod, though it also forms a part of their multiform contents, and was very ably translated into English, and published by King James's learned printer John Bill in various sizes, exactly one hundred and ninety-nine years before Mr. Scott subjected himself to the thankless work of supererogation, which he has most unskilfully executed. In that Preface, the old English translator has well conveyed the sense of the original; thus : “When, in man's understanding, scarce any hope of “ remedy appeared, God did put it into the minds of the most « Illustrious and Mighty Lords, the States General of the United “ Provinces, by the counsel and direction of the most renowned and “ valiant Prince of Orange, to determine to meet with these out “ rageous mischiefs by such lawful means as have been long time
approved by the example of the Apostles themselves, and of " the Christian Church following them,” &c. The States General of that period could be counselled and directed by Prince Maurice to any enterprize whatever; and these expressions sufficiently justify the assertion of Mosheim. Subsequently, however, they shewed themselves less tractable, and the ambitious design of the Prince of Orange miscarried. See page 594.
As a sequel to this exposition of Mr. Scott's “Public Records" and “Registers,” which dwindle into the Journal of the Synod's proceedings composed by the two Calvinistic secretaries, it may be proper to add “ the cautelous words” of the five British Deputies, which they published in their “ Joint Attestation" against Bishop Mountagu six years after their return from Dort. “It may be said, « (and so we ourselves say,) that the disposers and publishers of “ these Synodical Acts had done more right to the Britain Divines, if “ special mention had been made of that other matter not approved 6 by them, and of their particular exceptions against the Articles « which concerned church-government. But, it seemeth, (as in “ most other vocal passages in this Synod,) the Actuary here “ intended abridgment in what he set down, and meant not to “express in particular what was said by any concerning points “ not propounded to Synodical deliberation, especially touching
“ upon so tender a string as the open impeachment of their own “ established discipline."-Such an excuse as this for “the Actu. ary's [the notorious Festus Hommius'] intended abridgments," from friends, is far worse than the open criminations of enemies.Mr. Scott also asserts in his Introduction, that the measures of the Remonstrants “evidently tended to subvert the whole system" of the Presbyterian mode of church-government. On the contrary, the British Divines tell us, in their famous Joint Attestation, “In “ the Netherlands, the party opposite unto that Synod, and most “ aggrieved with the conclusions thereof concerning the points “ controverted, are, notwithstanding, as vehement and resolute “ maintainers of the ministerial parily, as any that concluded or " accepted the judgment of that Synod.” In a subsequent part of this volume, it will be found that Grotius complains of the Dutch Arminians, that they had evinced no disposition to adopt the Episcopal regimen.
III.--Omitting many scores of Mr. Scott's intermediate mis. translations and errors, we find, in page 73, the following passage : “But that they (the Remonstrants) might the more easily obtain that Toleration by public authority which they always pressed, by the benefit of which they indeed hoped to be able, by little and little, to introduce their own doctrine in the churches, they employed this artifice: They sent over into England, by Hugo Grotius, a certain writing, in which the true state of the controversy was dissembled, a copy of a letter being also annexed; and they requested that he would petition from the most serene James, King of Great Britain, seeing this cause could not be settled by any other method than by a Toleration, that his most serene royal Majesty would deign to give letters, according to the form of the annexed copy, to the illustriousthe High Mightinesses the States General; which he (Grotius,) having seized on an opportunity, surreptitiously obtained, and transmitted them to the illustrious the States General.”
I do not stop to animadvert upon literas here translated “ Letters,” since it was but “one,” as indeed the Latin word signifies ; but I proceed to the affair itself, which will receive further elucidation in the second volume, Appendix H, when I display some traits of Archbishop Abbot's character, who, on that occasion, wrote an infamous letter to his creature, Sir Ralph Winwoon, the King's ambassador at the Hague, in which he calumniated Grotius as “some pedant, a smatterer, a simple fellow, tedious, full of “tittle-tattle, full of words, and of no great judgment !" But Grotius, by the powerful aid of his friends Bishop Andrews and OVERAL, succeeded most satisfactorily with King James, who gloried in the office of peace-maker, which he officiously and without invitation assumed in regulating the domestic affairs of different States and Kingdoms in Europe. There can be little doubt, that the very wise letter which his Majesty addressed in