St. George and St. Michael Volume I eBook

This eBook from the Gutenberg Project consists of approximately 173 pages of information about St. George and St. Michael Volume I.
of general practice at the time, is not perhaps to say much, and that she firmly believed in the might of certain charms, and occasionally used them—­and I have given reason enough why, while regarded by all with disapprobation—­she should be by many both courted and feared.  For her own part she had a leaning to the puritans, chiefly from respect to the memory of a good-hearted, weak, but intellectually gifted, and, therefore, admired husband; but the ridicule of her yet more gifted son had a good deal shaken this predilection, so that she now spent what powers of discrimination and choice she possessed solely upon persons, heedless of principles in themselves, and regarding them only in their vital results.  Hence, it was a matter of absolute indifference to her which of the parties now dividing the country was in the right, or which should lose, which win, provided no personal evil befel the men or women for whom she cherished a preference.  Like many another, she was hardly aware of the jurisdiction of conscience, save in respect of immediate personal relations.



From the time when the conversation recorded had in some measure dispelled the fog between them, Roger and Richard Heywood drew rapidly nearer to each other.  The father had been but waiting until his son should begin to ask him questions, for watchfulness of himself and others had taught him how useless information is to those who have not first desired it, how poor in influence, how soon forgotten; and now that the fitting condition had presented itself, he was ready:  with less of reserve than in the relation between them was common amongst the puritans, he began to pour his very soul into that of his son.  All his influence went with that party which, holding that the natural flow of the reformation of the church from popery had stagnated in episcopacy, consisted chiefly of those who, in demanding the overthrow of that form of church government, sought to substitute for it what they called presbyterianism; but Mr. Heywood belonged to another division of it which, although less influential at present, was destined to come by and by to the front, in the strength of the conviction that to stop with presbyterianism was merely to change the name of the swamp—­a party whose distinctive and animating spirit was the love of freedom, which indeed, degenerating into a passion among its inferior members, broke out, upon occasion, in the wildest vagaries of speech and doctrine, but on the other hand justified itself in its leaders, chief amongst whom were Milton and Cromwell, inasmuch as they accorded to the consciences of others the freedom they demanded for their own—­the love of liberty with them not meaning merely the love of enjoying freedom, but that respect for the thing itself which renders a man incapable of violating it in another.

Roger Heywood was, in fact, already a pupil of Milton, whose anonymous pamphlet of ‘Reformation touching Church Discipline’ had already reached him, and opened with him the way for all his following works.

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St. George and St. Michael Volume I from Project Gutenberg. Public domain.
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