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the people of the Sardinian States. It is at variance with honest, straightforward dealing, and the faith of treaties. It is injurious to religion. It has brought on the country the censures of the Holy See. Such a state of things cannot last. It must lead to some great change. But, in the meantime we submit to those who are encouraging Sardinia in a progress towards ruin, this plain statement of the political condition of that unfortunate country.
Art. VII.-JASHAR, Fragmenta archetypa carminum Hebraicorum in
Masorethico Veteris Testamenti textu passim tessellata ; collegit, ordinavit, restituit, in unum corpus redegit, Latine exhibuit, commentario instruxit JOANNES GUILELMUS Donaldson, S.T.D., Collegii SS. Trinitatis apud Cantabrigienses olim socius.
JASHAR, Original fragments of Hebrew Poems, interwoven with many parts of the Masoretic text of the Old Testament. Collected, put in order, restored, united into one body, translated into Latin, and commented on, by John William Donaldson, D.D., and late Fellow of Trinity College, Cambridge, 1 vol. 8vo. London: Williams and Norgate. Berlin: Hertz. Printed in the latter place.
stag, which having apparently a taste for the insipid and the brackish, chose to feed on the sea-side. It was not the “milk-white doe" of more modern fable, but some worldly-wise member of a cervine flock, who separated himself from the companions of his youth, in search of what he considered liberty. On the one side of his chosen narrow territory were the broad and fertile pastures which he had quitted, where multitudes continued to feed in peace. On the other, roared the troubled ocean, with its tossing billows, treacherous quicksands, boisterous blasts, and sunken rocks. On which side lay danger? deliberated the wily seceder. Now it so happened that he
was afflicted with the very common defect of one-sightedness, as well as one-sidedness. All his terrors were about the land of his fathers, all his apprehensions were connected with the pleasant fields where he had passed his youth;
l while his turbulent neighbour, the abyss of many waters, seemed unlikely to assail his isolated abode. He turned his one keen eye, as he gazed, to the inland foe, he turned but an unconcerned ear to the tumultuous deep. At length when one day he fell, the fatal arrow was quivering in the blind unguarded side, and the hunters who quietly cut him up, and shared his quarters, disembarked from the sea upon the beach.
Need we explain, or rather apply, our parable? This self-willed wanderer from the “ spacious place where it had been fed with many others, from the abode of security, unity, and peace, which approached the border of that seething gulf where boil and roar the billows of disunion, of strife, of heresy, and finally of infidelity, all“ foaming out their own confusion,” (Jude 12) and thinks itself holding "a middle way” between the two, cannot be mistaken. Towards the place which it has left it turns its one jealous eye. It apprehends from the papal fold unceasing danger, and watches every movement of instinctive life as preparation for an attack on itself. To the other side it pays no attention. Dissent may multiply itself, by division, into a thousand new polypi, each capable of further subdivision; and, still worse, infidelity may creep on and on, and narrow its precarious holding, and undermine, with sullen strokes, its very standing place. It heeds not, so that popery can be checked. But we will venture to say that the dreaded stroke will come, at last, from the dementedly blind side, that on which the ecclesiastical eye has been long slumbering in fatal security. Nay, the bow has been drawn close, the string has vibrated, and the first shaft has anchored in its side. “ Hæret lateri lethalis arundo.” It is a poisonous infidelity.
We are inclined, however, to look at the subject from a different point. The ecclesiastical Establishment of this country has been anxiously engaged for many years back, in opposing the introduction of novelties in practice and in teaching. But in doing this, it has exhibited not merely the one-sidedness to which we have alluded, but still more a littleness and narrowness which brings it within the reach of a severer reproof than any from us can be. We cannot forget the condemnation of those who attend to the tithes of mint and cummin, but neglect the weightier things of the law, (Matt. xxxiii. 23,) nor of those who strain out a gnat, but swallow a camel. (Ib. 24.) If a stone altar is erected, it throws thousands into convulsions, and forms matter for judicial proceedings, the great cause of Vandal v. Goth, carried of course by the former. If flower-pots presume to bear upon “the table,” no longer allowed to be an altar, the most beautiful and innocent of God's gifts, Exeter rises in judgment, and withers them with his destructive touch. Is the sermon to be preached in gown or in surplice ? At the suggestion of such an enquiry men's hair seems spiritually to stand on end : at the attempt to appear in one of the two vestures, the ladies go into hysterics, the gentlemen into a rage; many people out of church, and some into dissent. Episcopal charges are brought into action, and strong prohibitions are pronounced, to allay the ferment. Shall the service be chaunted or recited, shall the sustained monotone or mere reading be used, shall cathedral services be performed in parochial churches, or in chapels no longer of ease ? Zealous butlers lead on the mob without, and no less zealous young men lead the choir within, till a mingled holocaust of murdered notes jars upwards towards, if not to, heaven. Officious churchwardens are collared in church, and police courts become the theatre of parochial war; till St. Paul and St. Barnabas might well, if present, again rend their garments (Acts xiv. 13,) at seeing the frightful scissure in their supposed congregations. And so, on the "prayer for the Church militant," and crosses, and candlesticks, and stained windows, and painted walls, the Anglican episcopate is great and valiant, and fiery with expurgatory zeal, and curiously watchful, lest the first deviation from Puritanical stiffness, or Calvinistic coldness, should prove a first step towards the genial and generous regions of the Church.
What a swarm of small gnats have not the rulers of this national system thus endeavoured to strain out of the food prepared by them for their followers ! Not a filament of a limb, not a film of a wing of the little popish creatures has been allowed to spoil the confections of these savoury manipulators. But the camel that comes dry, parched, hard and uncouth as the desert whence he springs, walks boldly in, a huge mass of ill-made-up heresies, with a lumping hunch of infidelity on his back, and nobody interferes with his progress. Nay, strange to say, he and his followers, as many as Madian and Epha can send, are not only freely admitted within the mosquito-curtains of the national sanctuary, but, to their own astonishment, are eagerly swallowed, and melt endearingly in the complacent stomach of expansive Anglicanism. How little does the anti-baptismal decision of the Gorham case now disturb any ecclesiastical digestion.
But we must change our strain, and strike a graver chord. Although inconsistency often borders on the absurd, and so provokes lighter handling, infidelity will not admit it. It is too closely allied with the dark and the deep in the spiritual life to be treated otherwise than in sad and sober earnestness. The book before us recalls us from any playfulness of vein in which we may have indulged, and throws a weight upon our responsibility in which we are far from delighting.
Dr. Donaldson is a learned, a shrewd, and an ingenious scholar. He has been advantageously known for years, as a philologer of more than ordinary attainments, as a conmentator on Pindar and Sophocles, and the compiler of a Hebrew, a Greek, and a Latin grammar. In addition to the titles which he wears on the title-page of his new work, of Doctor of Divinity in the English Establishment, and late Fellow of Trinity College, Cambridge, he is actually, we believe Head Master of the Grammar School of Bury St. Edmund's; consequently not only a recognized teacher of theology, but an actual instructor of youth, under the guardianship of the episcopal body recognised by the State.
“ Since," he tells us, “ Divine Providence called me away from the study of law, first to philology, and then to theology, I have received this one talent; I have obtained one means and instrument of the ministry, which I have considered it a sacred duty not to hide in the earth, lest I should darken my candle, whatever worth, in the obscurity of the bushel."--p. 36.
We quote these words, that so much of his own history as the author has chosen to communicate may be known at the outset. Further we profess to know nothing; nor have we to deal with him in any other capacity, than in that of an author, who constitutes the public his judge ; however he may, as Dr. Donaldson does immediately
after the words just quoted, reserve his reward to the future judgment. We neutralise, by previous acceptance, all assurances that he is upright, amiable, honourable, and blameless in all the relations
of life. These nowadays are compatible with the publication of fagrant infidelity. And this charge we are bound deliberately to bring against the book of “ Jashar.”
It is a sealed book to the great class of English readers; who seldom ask at their circulating library for a volume written in modern Latin, and having three or four sentences of untranslated Greek and a dozen Hebrew words per page, with a dash here and there of Arabic or Syriac, and a relish of German. Moreover it was printed in Germany, and has a foreign face on its type, not congenial to English eyes. Why therefore disturb its silent course, through the smoky regions of Teutonic study, at Halle, or Göttingen, Heidelberg or Rostock? Why call attention to it, and reveal its dangers where hitherto unknown? Our reasons for this line of conduct may be better seen later. Suffice it now to say, that we consider it a duty to expose every symptom of that plague which necessarily springs from undirected liberty of religious speculation.
What, the reader will first ask, is the meaning of the title given to the work?
Twice in the Old Testament the book of Jashar or Jasher is quoted, once in Josue x. 13, and once in the second book of Kings or. Samuel i. 18. The Vulgate translates the name, calling the work “the Book of the
Each of these references is connected with a short poetical effusion, the first with the account of Josue's address to the sun, the second with David's lamentation over Saul and Jonathan.
It is not worth while disputing minor questions arising from these references. We will at once admit that there was a book named the Book of Jashar, and that it consisted of, or at least contained, various poems. But we cannot feel so sure why it bore that name. It may have been compiled by a person to whom this epithet bad been given, for it simply means "the book of the upright man. Or it may have taken its name, like books of
* In words connected with this meaning, we have a difficulty in finding an adjective corresponding exactly with the abstract quality. Thus we have rectitude, and probity, without any corresponding