Doubtless so much knowledge, so much honest and unsparing toil, such freshness and quickness of thought, have not been wasted; there will always be much to learn from Bunsen’s writings. But his main service has been the moral one of his example; of his ardent and high-souled industry, of his fearlessness in accepting the conclusions of his inquiries, of his untiring faith through many changes and some disappointments that there is a way to reconcile all the truths that interest men—those of religion, and those of nature and history. The sincerity and earnestness with which he attempted this are a lesson to everybody; his success is more difficult to recognise, and it may perhaps be allowable to wish that he had taken more exactly the measure of the great task which he set to himself. His ambition was a high one. He aspired to be the Luther of the new 1517 which he so often dwelt upon, and to construct a theology which, without breaking with the past, should show what Christianity really is, and command the faith and fill the opening thought of the present. It can hardly be said that he succeeded. The Church of the Future still waits its interpreter, to make good its pretensions to throw the ignorant and mistaken Church of the Past into the shade.
COLERIDGE’S MEMOIR OF KEBLE
A Memoir of the Rev. John Keble. By the Right Hon. Sir J.T.
Coleridge. Saturday Review, 20th March 1860.