CHAPTER IX. THE +quot;FALL OF MAN+quot; AND ETHNOLOGY. WE have seen that, closely connecte

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CHAPTER IX. THE "FALL OF MAN" AND ETHNOLOGY. WE have seen that, closely connected with the main lines of investigation in archaeology and anthropology, there were other researches throwing much light on the entire subject. In a previous chapter we saw especially that Lafitau and Jussieu were among the first to collect and compare facts bearing on the natural history of man, gathered by travellers in various parts of the earth, thus laying foundations for the science of comparative ethnology. It was soon seen that ethnology had most important bearings upon the question of the material, intellectual, moral, and religious evolution of the human race; in every civilized nation, therefore, appeared scholars who began to study the characteristics of various groups of men as ascertained from travellers, and to compare the results thus gained with each other and with those obtained by archaeology. Thus, more and more clear became the evidences that the tendency of the race has been upward from low beginnings. It was found that groups of men still existed possessing characteristics of those in the early periods of development to whom the drift and caves and shell-heaps and pile-dwellings bear witness; groups of men using many of the same implements and weapons, building their houses in the same way, seeking their food by the same means, enjoying the same amusements, and going through the same general stages of culture; some being in a condition corresponding to the earlier, some to the later, of those early periods. From all sides thus came evidence that we have still upon the earth examples of all the main stages in the development of human civilization; that from the period when man appears little above the brutes, and with little if any religion in any accepted sense of the word, these examples can be arranged in an ascending series leading to the highest planes which humanity has reached; that philosophic observers may among these examples study existing beliefs, usages, and institutions back through earlier and earlier forms, until, as a rule, the whole evolution can be easily divined if not fully seen. Moreover, the basis of the whole structure became more and more clear: the fact that "the lines of intelligence have always been what they are, and have always operated as they do now; that man has progressed from the simple to the complex, from the particular to the general." As this evidence from ethnology became more and more strong, its significance to theology aroused attention, and naturally most determined efforts were made to break its force. On the Continent the two great champions of the Church in this field were De Maistre and De Bonald; but the two attempts which may be especially recalled as the most influential among English-speaking peoples were those of Whately, Archbishop of Dublin, and the Duke of Argyll. First in the combat against these new deductions of science was Whately. He was a strong man, whose breadth of thought and liberality in practice deserve all honour; but these very qualities drew upon him the distrust of his orthodox brethren; and, while his writings were powerful in the first half of the present century to break down many bulwarks of unreason, he seems to have been constantly in fear of losing touch with the Church, and therefore to have promptly attacked some scientific reasonings, which, had he been a layman, not holding a brief for the Church, he would probably have studied with more care and less prejudice. He was not slow to see the deeper significance of archaeology and ethnology in their relations to the theological conception of "the Fall," and he set the battle in array against them. His contention was, to use his own words, that "no community ever did or ever can emerge unassisted by external helps from a state of utter barbarism into anything that can be called civilization"; and that, in short, all imperfectly civilized, barbarous, and savage races are but fallen descendants of races more fully civilized. This view was urged with his usual ingenuity and vigour, but the facts proved too strong for him: they made it clear, first, that many races were without simple possessions, instruments, and arts which never, probably, could have been lost if once acquired--as, for example, pottery, the bow for shooting, various domesticated animals, spinning, the simplest principles of agriculture, household economy, and the like; and, secondly, it was shown as a simple matter of fact that various savage and barbarous tribes _had_ raised themselves by a development of means which no one from outside could have taught them; as in the cultivation and improvement of various indigenous plants, such as the potato and Indian corn among the Indians of North America; in the domestication of various animals peculiar to their own regions, such as the llama among the Indians of south America; in the making of sundry fabrics out of materials and by processes not found among other nations, such as the bark cloth of the Polynesians; and in the development of weapons peculiar to sundry localities, but known in no others, such as the boomerang in Australia. Most effective in bringing out the truth were such works as those of Sir John Lubbock and Tylor; and so conclusive were they that the arguments of Whately were given up as untenable by the other of the two great champions above referred to, and an attempt was made by him to form the diminishing number of thinking men supporting the old theological view on a new line of defence. This second champion, the Duke of Argyll, was a man of wide knowledge and strong powers in debate, whose high moral sense was amply shown in his adhesion to the side of the American Union in the struggle against disunion and slavery, despite the overwhelming majority against him in the high aristocracy to which he belonged. As an honest man and close thinker, the duke was obliged to give up completely the theological view of the antiquity of man. The whole biblical chronology as held by the universal Church, "always, everywhere, and by all," he sacrificed, and gave all his powers in this field to support the theory of "the Fall." _Noblesse oblige_: the duke and his ancestors had been for centuries the chief pillars of the Church of Scotland, and it was too much to expect that he could break away from a tenet which forms really its "chief cornerstone." Acknowledging the insufficiency of Archbishop Whately's argument, the duke took the ground that the lower, barbarous, savage, brutal races were the remains of civilized races which, in the struggle for existence, had been pushed and driven off to remote and inclement parts of the earth, where the conditions necessary to a continuance in their early civilization were absent; that, therefore, the descendants of primeval, civilized men degenerated and sank in the scale of culture. To use his own words, the weaker races were "driven by the stronger to the woods and rocks," so that they became "mere outcasts of the human race." In answer to this, while it was conceded, first, that there have been examples of weaker tribes sinking in the scale of culture after escaping from the stronger into regions unfavourable to civilization, and, secondly, that many powerful nations have declined and decayed, it was shown that the men in the most remote and unfavourable regions have not always been the lowest in the scale; that men have been frequently found "among the woods and rocks" in a higher state of civilization than on the fertile plains, such examples being cited as Mexico, Peru, and even Scotland; and that, while there were many examples of special and local decline, overwhelming masses of facts point to progress as a rule. The improbability, not to say impossibility, of many of the conclusions arrived at by the duke appeared more and more strongly as more became known of the lower tribes of mankind. It was necessary on his theory to suppose many things which our knowledge of the human race absolutely forbids us to believe: for example, it was necessary to suppose that the Australians or New Zealanders, having once possessed so simple and convenient an art as that of the potter, had lost every trace of it; and that the same tribes, having once had so simple a means of saving labour as the spindle or small stick weighted at one end for spinning, had given it up and gone back to twisting threads with the hand. In fact, it was necessary to suppose that one of the main occupations of man from "the beginning" had been the forgetting of simple methods, processes, and implements which all experience in the actual world teaches us are never entirely forgotten by peoples who have once acquired them. Some leading arguments of the duke were overthrown by simple statements of fact. Thus, his instance of the Eskimo as pushed to the verge of habitable America, and therefore living in the lowest depths of savagery, which, even if it were true, by no means proved a general rule, was deprived of its force by the simple fact that the Eskimos are by no means the lowest race on the American continent, and that various tribes far more centrally and advantageously placed, as, for instance, those in Brazil, are really inferior to them in the scale of culture. Again, his statement that "in Africa there appear to be no traces of any time when the natives were not acquainted with the use of iron," is met by the fact that from the Nile Valley to the Cape of Good Hope we find, wherever examination has been made, the same early stone implements which in all other parts of the world precede the use of iron, some of which would not have been made had their makers possessed iron. The duke also tried to show that there were no distinctive epochs of stone, bronze, and iron, by adducing the fact that some stone implements are found even in some high civilizations. This is indeed a fact. We find some few European peasants to-day using stone mallet-heads; but this proves simply that the old stone mallet-heads have survived as implements cheap and effective. The argument from Comparative Ethnology in support of the view that the tendency of mankind is upward has received strength from many sources. Comparative Philology shows that in the less civilized, barbarous, and savage races childish forms of speech prevail--frequent reduplications and the like, of which we have survivals in the later and even in the most highly developed languages. In various languages, too, we find relics of ancient modes of thought in the simplest words and expressions used for arithmetical calculations. Words and phrases for this purpose are frequently found to be derived from the words for hands, feet, fingers, and toes, just as clearly as in our own language some of our simplest measures of length are shown by their names to have been measures of parts of the human body, as the cubit, the foot, and the like, and therefore to date from a time when exactness was not required. To add another out of many examples, it is found to-day that various rude nations go through the simplest arithmetical processes by means of pebbles. Into our own language, through the Latin, has come a word showing that our distant progenitors reckoned in this way: the word _calculate_ gives us an absolute proof of this. According to the theory of the Duke of Argyll, men ages ago used pebbles (_calculi_) in performing the simplest arithmetical calculations because we to-day "_calculate_." No reduction to absurdity could be more thorough. The simple fact must be that we "calculate" because our remote ancestors used pebbles in their arithmetic. Comparative Literature and Folklore also show among peoples of a low culture to-day childish modes of viewing nature, and childish ways of expressing the relations of man to nature, such as clearly survive from a remote ancestry; noteworthy among these are the beliefs in witches and fairies, and multitudes of popular and poetic expressions in the most civilized nations. So,too, Comparative Ethnography, the basis of Ethnology, shows in contemporary barbarians and savages a childish love of playthings and games, of which we have many survivals. All these facts, which were at first unobserved or observed as matters of no significance, have been brought into connection with a fact in biology acknowledged alike by all important schools; by Agassiz on one hand and by Darwin on the other--namely, as stated by Agassiz, that "the young states of each species and group resemble older forms of the same group," or, as stated by Darwin, that "in two or more groups of animals, however much they may at first differ from each other in structure and habits, if they pass through closely similar embryonic stages, we may feel almost assured that they have descended from the same parent form, and are therefore closely related."[308] CHAPTER X. THE "FALL OF MAN" AND HISTORY. THE history of art, especially as shown by architecture, in the noblest monuments of the most enlightened nations of antiquity; gives abundant proofs of the upward tendency of man from the rudest and simplest beginnings. Many columns of early Egyptian temples or tombs are but bundles of Nile reeds slightly conventionalized in stone; the temples of Greece, including not only the earliest forms, but the Parthenon itself, while in parts showing an evolution out of Egyptian and Assyrian architecture, exhibit frequent reminiscences and even imitations of earlier constructions in wood; the medieval cathedrals, while evolved out of Roman and Byzantine structures, constantly show unmistakable survivals of prehistoric construction.[310] So, too, general history has come in, illustrating the unknown from the known: the development of man in the prehistoric period from his development within historic times. Nothing is more evident from history than the fact that weaker bodies of men driven out by stronger do not necessarily relapse into barbarism, but frequently rise, even under the most unfavourable circumstances, to a civilization equal or superior to that from which they have been banished. Out of very many examples showing this law of upward development, a few may be taken as typical. The Slavs, who sank so low under the pressure of stronger races that they gave the modern world a new word to express the most hopeless servitude, have developed powerful civilizations peculiar to themselves; the, barbarian tribes who ages ago took refuge amid the sand-banks and morasses of Holland, have developed one of the world's leading centres of civilization; the wretched peasants who about the fifth century took refuge from invading hordes among the lagoons and mud banks of Venetia, developed a power in art, arms, and politics which is among the wonders of human history; the Puritans, driven from the civilization of Great Britain to the unfavourable climate, soil, and circumstances of early New England,--the Huguenots, driven from France, a country admirably fitted for the highest growth of civilization, to various countries far less fitted for such growth,--the Irish peasantry, driven in vast numbers from their own island to other parts of the world on the whole less fitted to them--all are proofs that, as a rule, bodies of men once enlightened, when driven to unfavourable climates and brought under the most depressing circumstances, not only retain what enlightenment they have, but go on increasing it. Besides these, we have such cases as those of criminals banished to various penal colonies, from whose descendants has been developed a better morality; and of pirates, like those of the Bounty, whose descendants, in a remote Pacific island, became sober, steady citizens. Thousands of examples show the prevalence of this same rule--that men in masses do not forget the main gains of their civilization, and that, in spite of deteriorations, their tendency is upward. Another class of historic facts also testifies in the most striking manner to this same upward tendency: the decline and destruction of various civilizations brilliant but hopelessly vitiated. These catastrophes are seen more and more to be but steps in, this development. The crumbling away of the great ancient civilizations based upon despotism, whether the despotism of monarch, priest, or mob--the decline and fall of Roman civilization, for example, which, in his most remarkable generalization, Guizot has shown to have been necessary to the development of the richer civilization of modern Europe; the terrible struggle and loss of the Crusades, which once appeared to be a mere catastrophe, but are now seen to have brought in, with the downfall of feudalism, the beginnings of the centralizing, civilizing monarchical period; the French Revolution, once thought a mere outburst of diabolic passion, but now seen to be an unduly delayed transition from the monarchical to the constitutional epoch: all show that even widespread deterioration and decline--often, indeed, the greatest political and moral catastrophes--so far from leading to a fall of mankind, tend in the long run to raise humanity to higher planes. Thus, then, Anthropology and its handmaids, Ethnology, Philology, and History, have wrought out, beyond a doubt, proofs of the upward evolution of humanity since the appearance of man upon our planet. Nor have these researches been confined to progress in man's material condition. Far more important evidences have been found of upward evolution in his family, social, moral, intellectual, and religious relations. The light thrown on this subject by such men as Lubbock, Tylor, Herbert Spencer, Buckle, Draper, Max Muller, and a multitude of others, despite mistakes, haltings, stumblings, and occasional following of delusive paths, is among the greatest glories of the century now ending. From all these investigators in their various fields, holding no brief for any system sacred or secular, but seeking truth as truth, comes the same general testimony of the evolution of higher out of lower. The process has been indeed slow and painful, but this does not prove that it may not become more rapid and less fruitful in sorrow as humanity goes on.[312] While, then, it is not denied that many instances of retrogression can be found, the consenting voice of unbiased investigators in all lands has declared more and more that the beginnings of our race must have been low and brutal, and that the tendency has been upward. To combat this conclusion by examples of decline and deterioration here and there has become impossible: as well try to prove that, because in the Mississippi there are eddies in which the currents flow northward, there is no main stream flowing southward; or that, because trees decay and fall, there is no law of upward growth from germ to trunk, branches, foliage, and fruit. A very striking evidence that the theological theory had become untenable was seen when its main supporter in the scientific field, Von Martius, in the full ripeness of his powers, publicly declared his conversion to the scientific view. Yet, while the tendency of enlightened human thought in recent times is unmistakable, the struggle against the older view is not yet ended. The bitterness of the Abbe Hamard in France has been carried to similar and even greater extremes among sundry Protestant bodies in Europe and America. The simple truth of history mates it a necessity, unpleasant though it be, to chronicle two typical examples in the United States. In the year 1875 a leader in American industrial enterprise endowed at the capital of a Southern State a university which bore his name. It was given into the hands of one of the religious sects most powerful in that region, and a bishop of that sect became its president. To its chair of Geology was called Alexander Winchell, a scholar who had already won eminence as a teacher and writer in that field, a professor greatly beloved and respected in the two universities with which he had been connected, and a member of the sect which the institution of learning above referred to represented. But his relations to this Southern institution were destined to be brief. That his lectures at the Vanderbilt University were learned, attractive, and stimulating, even his enemies were forced to admit; but he was soon found to believe that there had been men earlier than the period as signed to Adam, and even that all the human race are not descended from Adam. His desire was to reconcile science and Scripture, and he was now treated by a Methodist Episcopal Bishop in Tennessee just as, two centuries before, La Peyrere had been treated, for a similar effort, by a Roman Catholic vicar-general in Belgium. The publication of a series of articles on the subject, contributed by the professor to a Northern religious newspaper at its own request, brought matters to a climax; for, the articles having fallen under the notice of a leading Southwestern organ of the denomination controlling the Vanderbilt University, the result was a most bitter denunciation of Prof. Winchell and of his views. Shortly afterward the professor was told by Bishop McTyeire that "our people are of the opinion that such views are contrary to the plan of redemption," and was requested by the bishop to quietly resign his chair, To this the professor made the fitting reply: "If the board of trustees have the manliness to dismiss me for cause, and declare the cause, I prefer that they should do it. No power on earth could persuade me to resign." "We do not propose," said the bishop, with quite gratuitous suggestiveness, "to treat you as the Inquisition treated Galileo." "But what you propose is the same thing," rejoined Dr. Winchell. "It is ecclesiastical proscription for an opinion which must be settled by scientific evidence." Twenty-four hours later Dr. Winchell was informed that his chair had been abolished, and its duties, with its salary, added to those of a colleague; the public were given to understand that the reasons were purely economic; the banished scholar was heaped with official compliments, evidently in hope that he would keep silence. Such was not Dr. Winchell's view. In a frank letter to the leading journal of the university town he stated the whole matter. The intolerance-hating press of the country, religious and secular, did not hold its peace. In vain the authorities of the university waited for the storm to blow over. It was evident, at last, that a defence must be made, and a local organ of the sect, which under the editorship of a fellow-professor had always treated Dr. Winchell's views with the luminous inaccuracy which usually characterizes a professor's ideas of a rival's teachings, assumed the task. In the articles which followed, the usual scientific hypotheses as to the creation were declared to be "absurd," "vague and unintelligible," "preposterous and gratuitous." This new champion stated that "the objections drawn from the fossiliferous strata and the like are met by reference to the analogy of Adam and Eve, who presented the phenomena of adults when they were but a day old, and by the Flood of Noah and other cataclysms, which, with the constant change of Nature, are sufficient to account for the phenomena in question"! Under inspiration of this sort the Tennessee Conference of the religious body in control of the university had already, in October, 1878, given utterance to its opinion of unsanctified science as follows: "This is an age in which scientific atheism, having divested itself of the habiliments that most adorn and dignify humanity, walks abroad in shameless denudation. The arrogant and impertinent claims of this `science, falsely so called,' have been so boisterous and persistent, that the unthinking mass have been sadly deluded; but our university alone has had the courage to lay its young but vigorous hand upon the mane of untamed Speculation and say, `We will have no more of this.'" It is a consolation to know how the result, thus devoutly sought, has been achieved; for in the "ode" sung at the laying of the corner-stone of a new theological building of the same university, in May, 1880, we read: "Science and Revelation here In perfect harmony appear, Guiding young feet along the road Through grace and Nature up to God." It is also pleasing to know that, while an institution calling itself a university thus violated the fundamental principles on which any institution worthy of the name must be based, another institution which has the glory of being the first in the entire North to begin something like a university organization--the State University of Michigan--recalled Dr. Winchell at once to his former professorship, and honoured itself by maintaining him in that position, where, unhampered, he was thereafter able to utter his views in the midst of the largest body of students on the American Continent. Disgraceful as this history was to the men who drove out Dr. Winchell, they but succeeded, as various similar bodies of men making similar efforts have done, in advancing their supposed victim to higher position and more commanding influence.[316] A few years after this suppression of earnest Christian thought at an institution of learning in the western part of our Southern States, there appeared a similar attempt in sundry seaboard States of the South. As far back as the year 1857 the Presbyterian Synod of Mississippi passed the following resolution: "_Whereas_, We live in an age in which the most insidious attacks are made on revealed religion through the natural sciences, and as it behooves the Church at all times to have men capable of defending the faith once delivered to the saints; "_Resolved_, That this presbytery recommend the endowment of a professorship of Natural Science as connected with revealed religion in one or more of our theological seminaries." Pursuant to this resolution such a chair was established in the theological seminary at Columbia, S. C., and James Woodrow was appointed professor. Dr. Woodrow seems to have been admirably fitted for the position--a devoted Christian man, accepting the Presbyterian standards of faith in which he had been brought up, and at the same time giving every effort to acquaint himself with the methods and conclusions of science. To great natural endowments he added constant labours to arrive at the truth in this field. Visiting Europe, he made the acquaintance of many of the foremost scientific investigators, became a student in university lecture rooms and laboratories, an interested hearer in scientific conventions, and a correspondent of leading men of science at home and abroad. As a result, he came to the conclusion that the hypothesis of evolution is the only one which explains various leading facts in natural science. This he taught, and he also taught that such a view is not incompatible with a true view of the sacred Scriptures. In 1882 and 1883 the board of directors of the theological seminary, in fear that "scepticism in the world is using alleged discoveries in science to impugn the Word of God," requested Prof. Woodrow to state his views in regard to evolution. The professor complied with this request in a very powerful address, which was published and widely circulated, to such effect that the board of directors shortly afterward passed resolutions declaring the theory of evolution as defined by Prof. Woodrow not inconsistent with perfect soundness in the faith. In the year 1884 alarm regarding Dr. Woodrow's teachings began to show itself in larger proportions, and a minority report was introduced into the Synod of South Carolina declaring that "the synod is called upon to decide not upon the question whether the said views of Dr. Woodrow contradict the Bible in its highest and absolute sense, but upon the question whether they contradict the interpretation of the Bible by the Presbyterian Church in the United States." Perhaps a more self-condemnatory statement was never presented, for it clearly recognized, as a basis for intolerance, at least a possible difference between "the interpretation of the Bible by the Presbyterian Church" and the teachings of "the Bible in its highest and absolute sense." This hostile movement became so strong that, in spite of the favourable action of the directors of the seminary, and against the efforts of a broad-minded minority in the representative bodies having ultimate charge of the institution, the delegates from the various synods raised a storm of orthodoxy and drove Dr. Woodrow from his post. Happily, he was at the same time professor in the University of South Carolina in the same city of Columbia, and from his chair in that institution he continued to teach natural science with the approval of the great majority of thinking men in that region; hence, the only effect of the attempt to crush him was, that his position was made higher, respect for him deeper, and his reputation wider. In spite of attempts by the more orthodox to prevent students of the theological seminary from attending his lectures at the university, they persisted in hearing him; indeed, the reputation of heresy seemed to enhance his influence. It should be borne in mind that the professor thus treated had been one of the most respected and beloved university instructors in the South during more than a quarter of a century, and that he was turned out of his position with no opportunity for careful defence, and, indeed, without even the formality of a trial. Well did an eminent but thoughtful divine of the Southern Presbyterian Church declare that "the method of procedure to destroy evolution by the majority in the Church is vicious and suicidal," and that "logical dynamite has been used to put out a supposed fire in the upper stories of our house, and all the family in the house at that." Wisely, too, did he refer to the majority as "sowing in the fields of the Church the thorns of its errors, and cumbering its path with the _debris_ and ruin of its own folly." To these recent cases may be added the expulsion of Prof. Toy from teaching under ecclesiastical control at Louisville, and his election to a far more influential chair at Harvard University; the driving out from the American College at Beyrout of the young professors who accepted evolution as probable, and the rise of one of them, Mr. Nimr, to a far more commanding position than that which he left--the control of three leading journals at Cairo; the driving out of Robertson Smith from his position at Edinburgh, and his reception into the far more important and influential professorship at the English University of Cambridge; and multitudes of similar cases. From the days when Henry Dunster, the first President of Harvard College, was driven from his presidency, as Cotton Mather said, for "falling into the briers of Antipedobaptism" until now, the same spirit is shown in all such attempts. In each we have generally, on one side, a body of older theologians, who since their youth have learned nothing and forgotten nothing, sundry professors who do not wish to rewrite their lectures, and a mass of unthinking ecclesiastical persons of little or no importance save in making up a retrograde majority in an ecclesiastical tribunal; on the other side we have as generally the thinking, open-minded, devoted men who have listened to the revelation of their own time as well as of times past, and who are evidently thinking the future thought of the world. Here we have survivals of that same oppression of thought by theology which has cost the modern world so dear; the system which forced great numbers of professors, under penalty of deprivation, to teach that the sun and planets revolve about the earth; that comets are fire-balls flung by an angry God at a wicked world; that insanity is diabolic possession; that anatomical investigation of the human frame is sin against the Holy Ghost; that chemistry leads to sorcery; that taking interest for money is forbidden by Scripture; that geology must conform to ancient Hebrew poetry. From the same source came in Austria the rule of the "Immaculate Oath," under which university professors, long before the dogma of the Immaculate Conception was defined by the Church, were obliged to swear to their belief in that dogma before they were permitted to teach even arithmetic or geometry; in England, the denunciation of inoculation against smallpox; in Scotland, the protests against using chloroform in childbirth as "vitiating the primal curse against woman"; in France, the use in clerical schools of a historical text-book from which Napoleon was left out; and, in America, the use of Catholic manuals in which the Inquisition is declared to have been a purely civil tribunal, or Protestant manuals in which the Puritans are shown to have been all that we could now wish they had been. So, too, among multitudes of similar efforts abroad, we have during centuries the fettering of professors at English and Scotch universities by test oaths, subscriptions to articles, and catechisms without number. In our own country we have had in a vast multitude of denominational colleges, as the first qualification for a professorship, not ability in the subject to be taught, but fidelity to the particular shibboleth of the denomination controlling the college or university. Happily, in these days such attempts generally defeat themselves. The supposed victim is generally made a man of mark by persecution, and advanced to a higher and wider sphere of usefulness. In withstanding the march of scientific truth, any Conference, Synod, Board of Commissioners, Board of Trustees, or Faculty, is but as a nest of field-mice in the path of a steam plough. The harm done to religion in these attempts is far greater than that done to science; for thereby suspicions are widely spread, especially among open-minded young men, that the accepted Christian system demands a concealment of truth, with the persecution of honest investigators, and therefore must be false. Well was it said in substance by President McCosh, of Princeton, that no more sure way of making unbelievers in Christianity among young men could be devised than preaching to them that the doctrines arrived at by the great scientific thinkers of this period are opposed to religion. Yet it is but justice here to say that more and more there is evolving out of this past history of oppression a better spirit, which is making itself manifest with power in the leading religious bodies of the world. In the Church of Rome we have to-day such utterances as those of St. George Mivart, declaring that the Church must not attempt to interfere with science; that the Almighty in the Galileo case gave her a distinct warning that the priesthood of science must remain with the men of science. In the Anglican Church and its American daughter we have the acts and utterances of such men as Archbishop Tait, Bishop Temple, Dean Stanley, Dean Farrar, and many others, proving that the deepest religious thought is more and more tending to peace rather than warfare with science; and in the other churches, especially in America, while there is yet much to be desired, the welcome extended in many of them to Alexander Winchell, and the freedom given to views like his, augur well for a better state of things in the future. From the science of Anthropology, when rightly viewed as a whole, has come the greatest aid to those who work to advance religion rather than to promote any particular system of theology; for Anthropology and its subsidiary sciences show more and more that man, since coming upon the earth, has risen, from the period when he had little, if any, idea of a great power above him, through successive stages of fetichism, shamanism, and idolatry, toward better forms of belief, making him more and more accessible to nobler forms of religion. The same sciences show, too, within the historic period, the same tendency, and especially within the events covered by our sacred books, a progress from fetichism, of which so many evidences crop out in the early Jewish worship as shown in the Old Testament Scriptures, through polytheism, when Jehovah was but "a god above all gods," through the period when he was "a jealous God," capricious and cruel, until he is revealed in such inspired utterances as those of the nobler Psalms, the great passages in Isaiah, the sublime preaching of Micah, and, above all, through the ideal given to the world by Jesus of Nazareth. Well indeed has an eminent divine of the Church of England in our own time called on Christians to rejoice over this evolution, "between the God of Samuel, who ordered infants to be slaughtered, and the God of the Psalmist, whose tender mercies are over all his works; between the God of the Patriarchs, who was always repenting, and the God of the Apostles, who is the same yesterday, to-day, and forever, with whom there is no variableness nor shadow of turning, between the God of the Old Testament, who walked in the garden in the cool of the day, and the God of the New Testament, whom no man hath seen nor can see; between the God of Leviticus, who was so particular about the sacrificial furniture and utensils, and the God of the Acts, who dwelleth not in temples made with hands; between the God who hardened Pharaoh's heart, and the God who will have all men to be saved; between the God of Exodus, who is merciful only to those who love him, and the God of Christ--the heavenly Father--who is kind unto the unthankful and the evil." However overwhelming, then, the facts may be which Anthropology, History, and their kindred sciences may, in the interest of simple truth, establish against the theological doctrine of "the Fall"; however completely they may fossilize various dogmas, catechisms, creeds, confessions, "plans of salvation" and "schemes of redemption," which have been evolved from the great minds of the theological period: science, so far from making inroads on religion, or even upon our Christian development of it, will strengthen all that is essential in it, giving new and nobler paths to man's highest aspirations. For the one great, legitimate, scientific conclusion of anthropology is, that, more and more, a better civilization of the world, despite all its survivals of savagery and barbarism, is developing men and women on whom the declarations of the nobler Psalms, of Isaiah, of Micah, the Sermon on the Mount, the first great commandment, and the second, which is like unto it, St. Paul's praise of charity and St. James's definition of "pure religion and undefiled," can take stronger hold for the more effective and more rapid uplifting of our race.[322] CHAPTER XI. FROM "THE PRINCE OF THE POWER OF THE AIR" TO METEOROLOGY I. GROWTH OF A THEOLOGICAL THEORY. THE popular beliefs of classic antiquity regarding storms, thunder, and lightning, took shape in myths representing Vulcan as forging thunderbolts, Jupiter as flinging them at his enemies, AEolus intrusting the winds in a bag to AEneas, and the like. An attempt at their further theological development is seen in the Pythagorean statement that lightnings are intended to terrify the damned in Tartarus. But at a very early period we see the beginning of a scientific view. In Greece, the Ionic philosophers held that such phenomena are obedient to law. Plato, Aristotle, and many lesser lights, attempted to account for them on natural grounds; and their explanations, though crude, were based upon observation and thought. In Rome, Lucretius, Seneca, Pliny, and others, inadequate as their statements were, implanted at least the germs of a science. But, as the Christian Church rose to power, this evolution was checked; the new leaders of thought found, in the Scriptures recognized by them as sacred, the basis for a new view, or rather for a modification of the old view. This ending of a scientific evolution based upon observation and reason, and this beginning of a sacred science based upon the letter of Scripture and on theology, are seen in the utterances of various fathers in the early Church. As to the general features of this new development, Tertullian held that sundry passages of Scripture prove lightning identical with hell-fire; and this idea was transmitted from generation to generation of later churchmen, who found an especial support of Tertullian's view in the sulphurous smell experienced during thunderstorms. St. Hilary thought the firmament very much lower than the heavens, and that it was created not only for the support of the upper waters, but also for the tempering of our atmosphere.[324] St. Ambrose held that thunder is caused by the winds breaking through the solid firmament, and cited from the prophet Amos the sublime passage regarding "Him that establisheth the thunders."[324b] He shows, indeed, some conception of the true source of rain; but his whole reasoning is limited by various scriptural texts. He lays great stress upon the firmament as a solid outer shell of the universe: the heavens he holds to be not far outside this outer shell, and argues regarding their character from St. Paul's Epistle to the Corinthians and from the one hundred and forty-eighth Psalm. As to "the waters which are above the firmament," he takes up the objection of those who hold that, this outside of the universe being spherical, the waters must slide off it, especially if the firmament revolves; and he points out that it is by no means certain that the _outside_ of the firmament _is_ spherical, and insists that, if it does revolve, the water is just what is needed to lubricate and cool its axis. St. Jerome held that God at the Creation, having spread out the firmament between heaven and earth, and having separated the upper waters from the lower, caused the upper waters to be frozen into ice, in order to keep all in place. A proof of this view Jerome found in the words of Ezekiel regarding "the crystal stretched above the cherubim."[324c] The germinal principle in accordance with which all these theories were evolved was most clearly proclaimed to the world by St. Augustine in his famous utterance: "Nothing is to be accepted save on the authority of Scripture, since greater is that authority than all the powers of the human mind."[325] No treatise was safe thereafter which did not breathe the spirit and conform to the letter of this maxim. Unfortunately, what was generally understood by the "authority of Scripture" was the tyranny of sacred books imperfectly transcribed, viewed through distorting superstitions, and frequently interpreted by party spirit. Following this precept of St. Augustine there were developed, in every field, theological views of science which have never led to a single truth--which, without exception, have forced mankind away from the truth, and have caused Christendom to stumble for centuries into abysses of error and sorrow. In meteorology, as in every other science with which he dealt, Augustine based everything upon the letter of the sacred text; and it is characteristic of the result that this man, so great when untrammelled, thought it his duty to guard especially the whole theory of the "waters above the heavens." In the sixth century this theological reasoning was still further developed, as we have seen, by Cosmas Indicopleustes. Finding a sanction for the old Egyptian theory of the universe in the ninth chapter of Hebrews, he insisted that the earth is a flat parallelogram, and that from its outer edges rise immense walls supporting the firmament; then, throwing together the reference to the firmament in Genesis and the outburst of poetry in the Psalms regarding the "waters that be above the heavens," he insisted that over the terrestrial universe are solid arches bearing a vault supporting a vast cistern "containing the waters"; finally, taking from Genesis the expression regarding the "windows of heaven," he insisted that these windows are opened and closed by the angels whenever the Almighty wishes to send rain upon the earth or to withhold it. This was accepted by the universal Church as a vast contribution to thought; for several centuries it was the orthodox doctrine, and various leaders in theology devoted themselves to developing and supplementing it. About the beginning of the seventh century, Isidore, Bishop of Seville, was the ablest prelate in Christendom, and was showing those great qualities which led to his enrolment among the saints of the Church. His theological view of science marks an epoch. As to the "waters above the firmament," Isidore contends that they must be lower than, the uppermost heaven, though higher than the lower heaven, because in the one hundred and forty-eighth Psalm they are mentioned _after_ the heavenly bodies and the "heaven of heavens," but _before_ the terrestrial elements. As to their purpose, he hesitates between those who held that they were stored up there by the prescience of God for the destruction of the world at the Flood, as the words of Scripture that "the windows of heaven were opened" seemed to indicate, and those who held that they were kept there to moderate the heat of the heavenly bodies. As to the firmament, he is in doubt whether it envelops the earth "like an eggshell," or is merely spread over it "like a curtain"; for he holds that the passage in the one hundred and fourth Psalm may be used to support either view. Having laid these scriptural foundations, Isidore shows considerable power of thought; indeed, at times, when he discusses the rainbow, rain, hail, snow, and frost, his theories are rational, and give evidence that, if he could have broken away from his adhesion to the letter of Scripture, he might have given a strong impulse to the evolution of a true science.[326] About a century later appeared, at the other extremity of Europe, the second in the trio of theological men of science in the early Middle Ages--Bede the Venerable. The nucleus of his theory also is to be found in the accepted view of the "firmament" and of the "waters above the heavens," derived from Genesis. The firmament he holds to be spherical, and of a nature subtile and fiery; the upper heavens, he says, which contain the angels, God has tempered with ice, lest they inflame the lower elements. As to the waters placed above the firmament, lower than the spiritual heavens, but higher than all corporeal creatures, he says, "Some declare that they were stored there for the Deluge, but others, more correctly, that they are intended to temper the fire of the stars." He goes on with long discussions as to various elements and forces in Nature, and dwells at length upon the air, of which he says that the upper, serene air is over the heavens; while the lower, which is coarse, with humid exhalations, is sent off from the earth, and that in this are lightning, hail, Snow, ice, and tempests, finding proof of this in the one hundred and forty-eighth Psalm, where these are commanded to "praise the Lord from the earth."[327] So great was Bede's authority, that nearly all the anonymous speculations of the next following centuries upon these subjects were eventually ascribed to him. In one of these spurious treatises an attempt is made to get new light upon the sources of the waters above the heavens, the main reliance being the sheet containing the animals let down from heaven, in the vision of St. Peter. Another of these treatises is still more curious, for it endeavours to account for earthquakes and tides by means of the leviathan mentioned in Scripture. This characteristic passage runs as follows: "Some say that the earth contains the animal leviathan, and that he holds his tail after a fashion of his own, so that it is sometimes scorched by the sun, whereupon he strives to get hold of the sun, and so the earth is shaken by the motion of his indignation; he drinks in also, at times, such huge masses of the waves that when he belches them forth all the seas feel their effect." And this theological theory of the tides, as caused by the alternate suction and belching of leviathan, went far and wide.[327] In the writings thus covered with the name of Bede there is much showing a scientific spirit, which might have come to something of permanent value had it not been hampered by the supposed necessity of conforming to the letter of Scripture. It is as startling as it is refreshing to hear one of these medieval theorists burst out as follows against those who are content to explain everything by the power of God: "What is more pitiable than to say that a thing _is_, because God is able to do it, and not to show any reason why it is so, nor any purpose for which it is so; just as if God did everything that he is able to do! You talk like one who says that God is able to make a calf out of a log. But _did_ he ever do it? Either, then, show a reason why a thing is so, or a purpose wherefore it is so, or else cease to declare it so."[328] The most permanent contribution of Bede to scientific thought in this field was his revival of the view that the firmament is made of ice; and he supported this from the words in the twenty-sixth chapter of Job, "He bindeth up the waters in his thick cloud, and the cloud is not rent under them." About the beginning of the ninth century appeared the third in that triumvirate of churchmen who were the oracles of sacred science throughout the early Middle Ages--Rabanus Maurus, Abbot of Fulda and Archbishop of Mayence. Starting, like all his predecessors, from the first chapter of Genesis, borrowing here and there from the ancient philosophers, and excluding everything that could conflict with the letter of Scripture, he follows, in his work upon the universe, his two predecessors, Isidore and Bede, developing especially St. Jerome's theory, drawn from Ezekiel, that the firmament is strong enough to hold up the "waters above the heavens," because it is made of ice. For centuries the authority of these three great teachers was unquestioned, and in countless manuals and catechisms their doctrine was translated and diluted for the common mind. But about the second quarter of the twelfth century a priest, Honorius of Autun, produced several treatises which show that thought on this subject had made some little progress. He explained the rain rationally, and mainly in the modern manner; with the thunder he is less successful, but insists that the thunderbolt "is not stone, as some assert." His thinking is vigorous and independent. Had theorists such as he been many, a new science could have been rapidly evolved, but the theological current was too strong.[329] The strength of this current which overwhelmed the thought of Honorius is seen again in the work of the Dominican monk, John of San Geminiano, who in the thirteenth century gave forth his _Summa de Exemplis_ for the use of preachers in his order. Of its thousand pages, over two hundred are devoted to illustrations drawn from the heavens and the elements. A characteristic specimen is his explanation of the Psalmist's phrase, "The arrows of the thunder." These, he tells us, are forged out of a dry vapour rising from the earth and kindled by the heat of the upper air, which then, coming into contact with a cloud just turning into rain, "is conglutinated like flour into dough," but, being too hot to be extinguished, its particles become merely sharpened at the lower end, and so blazing arrows, cleaving and burning everything they touch.[329b] But far more important, in the thirteenth century, was the fact that the most eminent scientific authority of that age, Albert the Great, Bishop of Ratisbon, attempted to reconcile the speculations of Aristotle with theological views derived from the fathers. In one very important respect he improved upon the meteorological views of his great master. The thunderbolt, he says, is no mere fire, but the product of black clouds containing much mud, which, when it is baked by the intense heat, forms a fiery black or red stone that falls from the sky, tearing beams and crushing walls in its course: such he has seen with his own eyes.[330] The monkish encyclopedists of the later Middle Ages added little to these theories. As we glance over the pages of Vincent of Beauvais, the monk Bartholomew, and William of Conches, we note only a growing deference to the authority of Aristotle as supplementing that of Isidore and Bede and explaining sacred Scripture. Aristotle is treated like a Church father, but extreme care is taken not to go beyond the great maxim of St. Augustine; then, little by little, Bede and Isidore fall into the background, Aristotle fills the whole horizon, and his utterances are second in sacredness only to the text of Holy Writ. A curious illustration of the difficulties these medieval scholars had to meet in reconciling the scientific theories of Aristotle with the letter of the Bible is seen in the case of the rainbow. It is to the honour of Aristotle that his conclusions regarding the rainbow, though slightly erroneous, were based upon careful observation and evolved by reasoning alone; but his Christian commentators, while anxious to follow him, had to bear in mind the scriptural statement that God had created the rainbow as a sign to Noah that there should never again be a Flood on the earth. Even so bold a thinker as Cardinal d'Ailly, whose speculations as to the geography of the earth did so much afterward in stimulating Columbus, faltered before this statement, acknowledging that God alone could explain it; but suggested that possibly never before the Deluge had a cloud been suffered to take such a position toward the sun as to cause a rainbow. The learned cardinal was also constrained to believe that certain stars and constellations have something to do in causing the rain, since these would best explain Noah's foreknowledge of the Deluge. In connection with this scriptural doctrine of winds came a scriptural doctrine of earthquakes: they were believed to be caused by winds issuing from the earth, and this view was based upon the passage in the one hundred and thirty-fifth Psalm, "He bringeth the wind out of his treasuries."[331] Such were the main typical attempts during nearly fourteen centuries to build up under theological guidance and within scriptural limitations a sacred science of meteorology. But these theories were mainly evolved in the effort to establish a basis and general theory of phenomena: it still remained to account for special manifestations, and here came a twofold development of theological thought. On one hand, these phenomena were attributed to the Almighty, and, on the other, to Satan. As to the first of these theories, we constantly find the Divine wrath mentioned by the earlier fathers as the cause of lightning, hailstorms, hurricanes, and the like. In the early days of Christianity we see a curious struggle between pagan and Christian belief upon this point. Near the close of the second century the Emperor Marcus Aurelius, in his effort to save the empire, fought a hotly contested battle with the Quadi, in what is now Hungary. While the issue of this great battle was yet doubtful there came suddenly a blinding storm beating into the faces of the Quadi, and this gave the Roman troops the advantage, enabling Marcus Aurelius to win a decisive victory. Votaries of each of the great religions claimed that this storm was caused by the object of their own adoration. The pagans insisted that Jupiter had sent the storm in obedience to their prayers, and on the Antonine Column at Rome we may still see the figure of Olympian Jove casting his thunderbolts and pouring a storm of rain from the open heavens against the Quadi. On the other hand, the Christians insisted that the storm had been sent by Jehovah in obedience to _their_ prayers; and Tertullian, Eusebius, St. Gregory of Nyssa, and St. Jerome were among those who insisted upon this meteorological miracle; the first two, indeed, in the fervour of their arguments for its reality, allowing themselves to be carried considerably beyond exact historical truth.[332] As time went on, the fathers developed this view more and more from various texts in the Jewish and Christian sacred books, substituting for Jupiter flinging his thunderbolts the Almighty wrapped in thunder and sending forth his lightnings. Through the Middle Ages this was fostered until it came to be accepted as a mere truism, entering into all medieval thinking, and was still further developed by an attempt to specify the particular sins which were thus punished. Thus even the rational Florentine historian Villani ascribed floods and fires to the "too great pride of the city of Florence and the ingratitude of the citizens toward God," which, "of course," says a recent historian, "meant their insufficient attention to the ceremonies of religion."[332b] In the thirteenth century the Cistercian monk, Cesarius of Heisterbach, popularized the doctrine in central Europe. His rich collection of anecdotes for the illustration of religious truths was the favourite recreative reading in the convents for three centuries, and exercised great influence over the thought of the later Middle Ages. In this work he relates several instances of the Divine use of lightning, both for rescue and for punishment. Thus he tells us how the steward (_cellerarius_) of his own monastery was saved from the clutch of a robber by a clap of thunder which, in answer to his prayer, burst suddenly from the sky and frightened the bandit from his purpose: how, in a Saxon theatre, twenty men were struck down, while a priest escaped, not because he was not a greater sinner than the rest, but because the thunderbolt had respect for his profession! It is Cesarius, too, who tells us the story of the priest of Treves, struck by lightning in his own church, whither he had gone to ring the bell against the storm, and whose sins were revealed by the course of the lightning, for it tore his clothes from him and consumed certain parts of his body, showing that the sins for which he was punished were vanity and unchastity.[333] This mode of explaining the Divine interference more minutely is developed century after century, and we find both Catholics and Protestants assigning as causes of unpleasant meteorological phenomena whatever appears to them wicked or even unorthodox. Among the English Reformers, Tyndale quotes in this kind of argument the thirteenth chapter of I. Samuel, showing that, when God gave Israel a king, it thundered and rained. Archbishop Whitgift, Bishop Bale, and Bishop Pilkington insisted on the same view. In Protestant Germany, about the same period, Plieninger took a dislike to the new Gregorian calendar and published a volume of _Brief Reflections_, in which he insisted that the elements had given utterance to God's anger against it, calling attention to the fact that violent storms raged over almost all Germany during the very ten days which the Pope had taken out for the correction of the year, and that great floods began with the first days of the corrected year.[333b] Early in the seventeenth century, Majoli, Bishop of Voltoraria, in southern Italy, produced his huge work _Dies Canicularii_, or Dog Days, which remained a favourite encyclopedia in Catholic lands for over a hundred years. Treating of thunder and lightning, he compares them to bombs against the wicked, and says that the thunderbolt is "an exhalation condensed and cooked into stone," and that "it is not to be doubted that, of all instruments of God's vengeance, the thunderbolt is the chief"; that by means of it Sennacherib and his army were consumed; that Luther was struck by lightning in his youth as a caution against departing from the Catholic faith; that blasphemy and Sabbath-breaking are the sins to which this punishment is especially assigned, and he cites the case of Dathan and Abiram. Fifty years later the Jesuit Stengel developed this line of thought still further in four thick quarto volumes on the judgments of God, adding an elaborate schedule for the use of preachers in the sermons of an entire year. Three chapters were devoted to thunder, lightning, and storms. That the author teaches the agency in these of diabolical powers goes without saying; but this can only act, he declares, by Divine permission, and the thunderbolt is always the finger of God, which rarely strikes a man save for his sins, and the nature of the special sin thus punished may be inferred from the bodily organs smitten. A few years later, in Protestant Swabia, Pastor Georg Nuber issued a volume of "weather-sermons," in which he discusses nearly every sort of elemental disturbances--storms, floods, droughts, lightning, and hail. These, he says, come direct from God for human sins, yet no doubt with discrimination, for there are five sins which God especially punishes with lightning and hail--namely, impenitence, incredulity, neglect of the repair of churches, fraud in the payment of tithes to the clergy, and oppression of subordinates, each of which points he supports with a mass of scriptural texts.[334] This doctrine having become especially precious both to Catholics and to Protestants, there were issued handbooks of prayers against bad weather: among these was the _Spiritual Thunder and Storm Booklet_, produced in 1731 by a Protestant scholar, Stoltzlin, whose three or four hundred pages of prayer and song, "sighs for use when it lightens fearfully," and "cries of anguish when the hailstorm is drawing on," show a wonderful adaptability to all possible meteorological emergencies. The preface of this volume is contributed by Prof. Dilherr, pastor of the great church of St. Sebald at Nuremberg, who, in discussing the Divine purposes of storms, adds to the three usually assigned--namely, God's wish to manifest his power, to display his anger, and to drive sinners to repentance--a fourth, which, he says, is that God may show us "with what sort of a stormbell he will one day ring in the last judgment." About the end of the first quarter of the eighteenth century we find, in Switzerland, even the eminent and rational Professor of Mathematics, Scheuchzer, publishing his _Physica Sacra_, with the Bible as a basis, and forced to admit that the elements, in the most literal sense, utter the voice of God. The same pressure was felt in New England. Typical are the sermons of Increase Mather on _The Voice of God in Stormy Winds_. He especially lays stress on the voice of God speaking to Job out of the whirlwind, and upon the text, "Stormy wind fulfilling his word." He declares, "When there are great tempests, the angels oftentimes have a hand therein,... yea, and sometimes evil angels." He gives several cases of blasphemers struck by lightning, and says, "Nothing can be more dangerous for mortals than to contemn dreadful providences, and, in particular, dreadful tempests." His distinguished son, Cotton Mather, disentangled himself somewhat from the old view, as he had done in the interpretation of comets. In his _Christian Philosopher_, his _Thoughts for the Day of Rain_, and his _Sermon preached at the Time of the Late Storm_ (in 1723), he is evidently tending toward the modern view. Yet, from time to time, the older view has reasserted itself, and in France, as recently as the year 1870, we find the Bishop of Verdun ascribing the drought afflicting his diocese to the sin of Sabbath-breaking.[335] This theory, which attributed injurious meteorological phenomnena mainly to the purposes of God, was a natural development, and comparatively harmless; but at a very early period there was evolved another theory, which, having been ripened into a doctrine, cost the earth dear indeed. Never, perhaps, in the modern world has there been a dogma more prolific of physical, mental, and moral agony throughout whole nations and during whole centuries. This theory, its development by theology, its fearful results to mankind, and its destruction by scientific observation and thought, will next be considered. II. DIABOLIC AGENCY IN STORMS. While the fathers and schoolmen were labouring to deduce a science of meteorology from our sacred books, there oozed up in European society a mass of traditions and observances which had been lurking since the days of paganism; and, although here and there appeared a churchman to oppose them, the theologians and ecclesiastics ere long began to adopt them and to clothe them with the authority of religion. Both among the pagans of the Roman Empire and among the barbarians of the North the Christian missionaries had found it easier to prove the new God supreme than to prove the old gods powerless. Faith in the miracles of the new religion seemed to increase rather than to diminish faith in the miracles of the old; and the Church at last began admitting the latter as facts, but ascribing them to the devil. Jupiter and Odin sank into the category of ministers of Satan, and transferred to that master all their former powers. A renewed study of Scripture by theologians elicited overwhelming proofs of the truth of this doctrine. Stress was especially laid on the declaration of Scripture, "The gods of the heathen are devils."[336] Supported by this and other texts, it soon became a dogma. So strong was the hold it took, under the influence of the Church, that not until late in the seventeenth century did its substantial truth begin to be questioned. With no field of action had the sway of the ancient deities been more identified than with that of atmospheric phenomena. The Roman heard Jupiter, and the Teuton heard Thor, in the thunder. Could it be doubted that these powerful beings would now take occasion, unless hindered by the command of the Almighty, to vent their spite against those who had deserted their altars? Might not the Almighty himself be willing to employ the malice of these powers of the air against those who had offended him? It was, indeed, no great step, for those whose simple faith accepted rain or sunshine as an answer to their prayers, to suspect that the untimely storms or droughts, which baffled their most earnest petitions, were the work of the archenemy, "the prince of the power of the air." The great fathers of the Church had easily found warrant for this doctrine in Scripture. St. Jerome declared the air to be full of devils, basing this belief upon various statements in the prophecies of Isaiah and in the Epistle to the Ephesians. St. Augustine held the same view as beyond controversy.[337] During the Middle Ages this doctrine of the diabolical origin of storms went on gathering strength. Bede had full faith in it, and narrates various anecdotes in support of it. St. Thomas Aquinas gave it his sanction, saying in his all authoritative _Summa_, "Rains and winds, and whatsoever occurs by local impulse alone, can be caused by demons." "It is," he says, "a dogma of faith that the demons can produce wind, storms, and rain of fire from heaven." Albert the Great taught the same doctrine, and showed how a certain salve thrown into a spring produced whirlwinds. The great Franciscan--the "seraphic doctor"--St. Bonaventura, whose services to theology earned him one of the highest places in the Church, and to whom Dante gave special honour in paradise, set upon this belief his high authority. The lives of the saints, and the chronicles of the Middle Ages, were filled with it. Poetry and painting accepted the idea and developed it. Dante wedded it to verse, and at Venice this thought may still be seen embodied in one of the grand pictures of Bordone: a shipload of demons is seen approaching Venice in a storm, threatening destruction to the city, but St. Mark, St. George, and St. Nicholas attack the vessel, and disperse the hellish crew.[338] The popes again and again sanctioned this doctrine, and it was amalgamated with various local superstitions, pious imaginations, and interesting arguments, to strike the fancy of the people at large. A strong argument in favour of a diabolical origin of the thunderbolt was afforded by the eccentricities of its operation. These attracted especial attention in the Middle Ages, and the popular love of marvel generalized isolated phenomena into rules. Thus it was said that the lightning strikes the sword in the sheath, gold in the purse, the foot in the shoe, leaving sheath and purse and shoe unharmed; that it consumes a human being internally without injuring the skin; that it destroys nets in the water, but not on the land; that it kills one man, and leaves untouched another standing beside him; that it can tear through a house and enter the earth without moving a stone from its place; that it injures the heart of a tree, but not the bark; that wine is poisoned by it, while poisons struck by it lose their venom; that a man's hair may be consumed by it and the man be unhurt.[338b] These peculiar phenomena, made much of by the allegorizing sermonizers of the day, were used in moral lessons from every pulpit. Thus the Carmelite, Matthias Farinator, of Vienna, who at the Pope's own instance compiled early in the fifteenth century that curious handbook of illustrative examples for preachers, the _Lumen Animae_, finds a spiritual analogue for each of these anomalies.[338c] This doctrine grew, robust and noxious, until, in the fifteenth, sixteenth, and seventeenth centuries, we find its bloom in a multitude of treatises by the most learned of the Catholic and Protestant divines, and its fruitage in the torture chambers and on the scaffolds throughout Christendom. At the Reformation period, and for nearly two hundred years afterward, Catholics and Protestants vied with each other in promoting this growth. John Eck, the great opponent of Luther, gave to the world an annotated edition of Aristotle's _Physics_, which was long authoritative in the German universities; and, though the text is free from this doctrine, the woodcut illustrating the earth's atmosphere shows most vividly, among the clouds of mid-air, the devils who there reign supreme.[339] Luther, in the other religious camp, supported the superstition even more zealously, asserting at times his belief that the winds themselves are only good or evil spirits, and declaring that a stone thrown into a certain pond in his native region would cause a dreadful storm because of the devils, kept prisoners there.[339b] Just at the close of the same century, Catholics and Protestants welcomed alike the great work of Delrio. In this, the power of devils over the elements is proved first from the Holy Scriptures, since, he declares, "they show that Satan brought fire down from heaven to consume the servants and flocks of Job, and that he stirred up a violent wind, which overwhelmed in ruin the sons and daughters of Job at their feasting." Next, Delrio insists on the agreement of all the orthodox fathers, that it was the devil himself who did this, and attention is called to the fact that the hail with which the Egyptians were punished is expressly declared in Holy Scripture to have been brought by the evil angels. Citing from the Apocalypse, he points to the four angels standing at the four corners of the earth, holding back the winds and preventing their doing great damage to mortals; and he dwells especially upon the fact that the devil is called by the apostle a "prince of the power of the air." He then goes on to cite the great fathers of the Church--Clement, Jerome, Augustine, and Thomas Aquinas.[340] This doctrine was spread not only in ponderous treatises, but in light literature and by popular illustrations. In the _Compendium Maleficarum_ of the Italian monk Guacci, perhaps the most amusing book in the whole literature of witchcraft, we may see the witch, _in propria persona_, riding the diabolic goat through the clouds while the storm rages around and beneath her; and we may read a rich collection of anecdotes, largely contemporary, which establish the required doctrine beyond question. The first and most natural means taken against this work of Satan in the air was prayer; and various petitions are to be found scattered through the Christian liturgies--some very beautiful and touching. This means of escape has been relied upon, with greater or less faith, from those days to these. Various medieval saints and reformers, and devoted men in all centuries, from St. Giles to John Wesley, have used it with results claimed to be miraculous. Whatever theory any thinking man may hold in the matter, he will certainly not venture a reproachful word: such prayers have been in all ages a natural outcome of the mind of man in trouble.[340b] But against the "power of the air" were used other means of a very different character and tendency, and foremost among these was exorcism. In an exorcism widely used and ascribed to Pope Gregory XIII, the formula is given: "I, a priest of Christ,... do command ye, most foul spirits, who do stir up these clouds,... that ye depart from them, and disperse yourselves into wild and untilled places, that ye may be no longer able to harm men or animals or fruits or herbs, or whatsoever is designed for human use." But this is mild, indeed, compared to some later exorcisms, as when the ritual runs: "All the people shall rise, and the priest, turning toward the clouds, shall pronounce these words: `I exorcise ye, accursed demons, who have dared to use, for the accomplishment of your iniquity, those powers of Nature by which God in divers ways worketh good to mortals; who stir up winds, gather vapours, form clouds, and condense them into hail.... I exorcise ye,... that ye relinquish the work ye have begun, dissolve the hail, scatter the clouds, disperse the vapours, and restrain the winds.'" The rubric goes on to order that then there shall be a great fire kindled in an open place, and that over it the sign of the cross shall be made, and the one hundred and fourteenth Psalm chanted, while malodorous substances, among them sulphur and asafoetida, shall be cast into the flames. The purpose seems to have been literally to "smoke out" Satan.[341] Manuals of exorcisms became important--some bulky quartos, others handbooks. Noteworthy among the latter is one by the Italian priest Locatelli, entitled _Exorcisms most Powerful and Efficacious for the Dispelling of Aerial Tempests, whether raised by Demons at their own Instance or at the Beck of some Servant of the Devil_.[341b] The Jesuit Gretser, in his famous book on _Benedictions and Maledictions_, devotes a chapter to this subject, dismissing summarily the scepticism that questions the power of devils over the elements, and adducing the story of Job as conclusive.[341c] Nor was this theory of exorcism by any means confined to the elder Church. Luther vehemently upheld it, and prescribed especially the first chapter of St. John's gospel as of unfailing efficacy against thunder and lightning, declaring that he had often found the mere sign of the cross, with the text, "The word was made flesh," sufficient to put storms to flight.[342] From the beginning of the Middle Ages until long after the Reformation the chronicles give ample illustration of the successful use of such exorcisms. So strong was the belief in them that it forced itself into minds comparatively rational, and found utterance in treatises of much importance. But, since exorcisms were found at times ineffectual, other means were sought, and especially fetiches of various sorts. One of the earliest of these appeared when Pope Alexander I, according to tradition, ordained that holy water should be kept in churches and bedchambers to drive away devils.[342b] Another safeguard was found in relics, and of similar efficacy were the so-called "conception billets" sold by the Carmelite monks. They contained a formula upon consecrated paper, at which the devil might well turn pale. Buried in the corner of a field, one of these was thought to give protection against bad weather and destructive insects.[342c] But highest in repute during centuries was the _Agnus Dei_--a piece of wax blessed by the Pope's own hand, and stamped with the well-known device representing the "Lamb of God." Its powers were so marvellous that Pope Urban V thought three of these cakes a fitting gift from himself to the Greek Emperor. In the Latin doggerel recounting their virtues, their meteorological efficacy stands first, for especial stress is laid on their power of dispelling the thunder. The stress thus laid by Pope Urban, as the infallible guide of Christendom, on the efficacy of this fetich, gave it great value throughout Europe, and the doggerel verses reciting its virtues sank deep into the popular mind. It was considered a most potent means of dispelling hail, pestilence, storms, conflagrations, and enchantments; and this feeling was deepened by the rules and rites for its consecration. So solemn was the matter, that the manufacture and sale of this particular fetich was, by a papal bull of 1471, reserved for the Pope himself, and he only performed the required ceremony in the first and seventh years of his pontificate. Standing unmitred, he prayed: "O God,... we humbly beseech thee that thou wilt bless these waxen forms, figured with the image of an innocent lamb,... that, at the touch and sight of them, the faithful may break forth into praises, and that the crash of hailstorms, the blast of hurricanes, the violence of tempests, the fury of winds, and the malice of thunderbolts may be tempered, and evil spirits flee and tremble before the standard of thy holy cross, which is graven upon them."[343] Another favourite means with the clergy of the older Church for bringing to naught the "power of the air," was found in great processions bearing statues, relics, and holy emblems through the streets. Yet even these were not always immediately effective. One at Liege, in the thirteenth century, thrice proved unsuccessful in bringing rain, when at last it was found that the image of the Virgin had been forgotten! A new procession was at once formed, the _Salve Regina_ sung, and the rain came down in such torrents as to drive the devotees to shelter.[344] In Catholic lands this custom remains to this day, and very important features in these processions are the statues and the reliquaries of patron saints. Some of these excel in bringing sunshine, others in bringing rain. The Cathedral of Chartres is so fortunate as to possess sundry relics of St. Taurin, especially potent against dry weather, and some of St. Piat, very nearly as infallible against wet weather. In certain regions a single saint gives protection alternately against wet and dry weather--as, for example, St. Godeberte at Noyon. Against storms St. Barbara is very generally considered the most powerful protectress; but, in the French diocese of Limoges, Notre Dame de Crocq has proved a most powerful rival, for when, a few years since, all the neighbouring parishes were ravaged by storms, not a hailstone fell in the canton which she protected. In the diocese of Tarbes, St. Exupere is especially invoked against hail, peasants flocking from all the surrounding country to his shrine.[344b] But the means of baffling the powers of the air which came to be most widely used was the ringing of consecrated church bells. This usage had begun in the time of Charlemagne, and there is extant a prohibition of his against the custom of baptizing bells and of hanging certain tags[344c] on their tongues as a protection against hailstorms; but even Charlemagne was powerless against this current of medieval superstition. Theological reasons were soon poured into it, and in the year 968 Pope John XIII gave it the highest ecclesiastical sanction by himself baptizing the great bell of his cathedral church, the Lateran, and christening it with his own name.[345] This idea was rapidly developed, and we soon find it supported in ponderous treatises, spread widely in sermons, and popularized in multitudes of inscriptions cast upon the bells themselves. This branch of theological literature may still be studied in multitudes of church towers throughout Europe. A bell at Basel bears the inscription, "Ad fugandos demones." Another, in Lugano, declares "The sound of this bell vanquishes tempests, repels demons, and summons men." Another, at the Cathedral of Erfurt, declares that it can "ward off lightning and malignant demons." A peal in the Jesuit church at the university town of Pont-a-Mousson bore the words, "They praise God, put to flight the clouds, affright the demons, and call the people." This is dated 1634. Another bell in that part of France declares, "It is I who dissipate the thunders"(_Ego sum qui dissipo tonitrua_).[345b] Another, in one of the forest cantons of Switzerland, bears a doggerel couplet, which may be thus translated: "On the devil my spite I'll vent, And, God helping, bad weather prevent."[345c] Very common were inscriptions embodying this doctrine in sonorous Latin. Naturally, then, there grew up a ritual for the consecration of bells. Knollys, in his quaint translation of the old chronicler Sleidan, gives us the usage in the simple English of the middle of the sixteenth century: "In lyke sorte [as churches] are the belles used. And first, forsouth, they must hange so, as the Byshop may goe round about them. Whiche after he hath sayde certen Psalmes, he consecrateth water and salte, and mingleth them together, wherwith he washeth the belle diligently both within and without, after wypeth it drie, and with holy oyle draweth in it the signe of the crosse, and prayeth God, that whan they shall rynge or sounde that bell, all the disceiptes of the devyll may vanyshe away, hayle, thondryng, lightening, wyndes, and tempestes, and all untemperate weathers may be aswaged. Whan he hath wipte out the crosse of oyle wyth a linen cloth, he maketh seven other crosses in the same, and within one only. After saying certen Psalmes, he taketh a payre of sensours and senseth the bel within, and prayeth God to sende it good lucke. In many places they make a great dyner, and kepe a feast as it were at a solemne wedding."[346] These bell baptisms became matters of great importance. Popes, kings, and prelates were proud to stand as sponsors. Four of the bells at the Cathedral of Versailles having been destroyed during the French Revolution, four new ones were baptized, on the 6th of January, 1824, the Voltairean King, Louis XVIII, and the pious Duchess d'Angouleme standing as sponsors. In some of these ceremonies zeal appears to have outrun knowledge, and one of Luther's stories, at the expense of the older Church, was that certain authorities thus christened a bell "Hosanna," supposing that to be the name of a woman. To add to the efficacy of such baptisms, water was sometimes brought from the river Jordan.[346b] The prayers used at bell baptisms fully recognise this doctrine. The ritual of Paris embraces the petition that, "whensoever this bell shall sound, it shall drive away the malign influences of the assailing spirits, the horror of their apparitions, the rush of whirlwinds, the stroke of lightning, the harm of thunder, the disasters of storms, and all the spirits of the tempest." Another prayer begs that "the sound of this bell may put to flight the fiery darts of the enemy of men"; and others vary the form but not the substance of this petition. The great Jesuit theologian, Bellarmin, did indeed try to deny the reality of this baptism; but this can only be regarded as a piece of casuistry suited to Protestant hardness of heart, or as strategy in the warfare against heretics.[347] Forms of baptism were laid down in various manuals sanctioned directly by papal authority, and sacramental efficacy was everywhere taken for granted.[347b] The development of this idea in the older Church was too strong to be resisted;[347c] but, as a rule, the Protestant theologians of the Reformation, while admitting that storms were caused by Satan and his legions, opposed the baptism of bells, and denied the theory of their influence in dispersing storms. Luther, while never doubting that troublesome meteorological phenomena were caused by devils, regarded with contempt the idea that the demons were so childish as to be scared by the clang of bells; his theory made them altogether too powerful to be affected by means so trivial. The great English Reformers, while also accepting very generally the theory of diabolic interference in storms, reproved strongly the baptizing of bells, as the perversion of a sacrament and involving blasphemy. Bishop Hooper declared reliance upon bells to drive away tempests, futile. Bishop Pilkington, while arguing that tempests are direct instruments of God's wrath, is very severe against using "unlawful means," and among these he names "the hallowed bell"; and these opinions were very generally shared by the leading English clergy.[348] Toward the end of the sixteenth century the Elector of Saxony strictly forbade the ringing of bells against storms, urging penance and prayer instead; but the custom was not so easily driven out of the Protestant Church, and in some quarters was developed a Protestant theory of a rationalistic sort, ascribing the good effects of bell-ringing in storms to the calling together of the devout for prayer or to the suggestion of prayers during storms at night. As late as the end of the seventeenth century we find the bells of Protestant churches in northern Germany rung for the dispelling of tempests. In Catholic Austria this bell-ringing seems to have become a nuisance in the last century, for the Emperor Joseph II found it necessary to issue an edict against it; but this doctrine had gained too large headway to be arrested by argument or edict, and the bells may be heard ringing during storms to this day in various remote districts in Europe.[348b] For this was no mere superficial view. It was really part of a deep theological current steadily developed through the Middle Ages, the fundamental idea of the whole being the direct influence of the bells upon the "Power of the Air"; and it is perhaps worth our while to go back a little and glance over the coming of this current into the modern world. Having grown steadily through the Middle Ages, it appeared in full strength at the Reformation period; and in the sixteenth century Olaus Magnus, Archbishop of Upsala and Primate of Sweden, in his great work on the northern nations, declares it a well-established fact that cities and harvests may be saved from lightning by the ringing of bells and the burning of consecrated incense, accompanied by prayers; and he cautions his readers that the workings of the thunderbolt are rather to be marvelled at than inquired into. Even as late as 1673 the Franciscan professor Lealus, in Italy, in a schoolbook which was received with great applause in his region, taught unhesitatingly the agency of demons in storms, and the power of bells over them, as well as the portentousness of comets and the movement of the heavens by angels. He dwells especially, too, upon the perfect protection afforded by the waxen _Agnus Dei_. How strong this current was, and how difficult even for philosophical minds to oppose, is shown by the fact that both Descartes and Francis Bacon speak of it with respect, admitting the fact, and suggesting very mildly that the bells may accomplish this purpose by the concussion of the air.[349] But no such moderate doctrine sufficed, and the renowned Bishop Binsfeld, of Treves, in his noted treatise on the credibility of the confessions of witches, gave an entire chapter to the effect of bells in calming atmospheric disturbances. Basing his general doctrine upon the first chapter of Job and the second chapter of Ephesians, he insisted on the reality of diabolic agency in storms; and then, by theological reasoning, corroborated by the statements extorted in the torture chamber, he showed the efficacy of bells in putting the hellish legions to flight.[350] This continued, therefore, an accepted tenet, developed in every nation, and coming to its climax near the end of the seventeenth century. At that period--the period of Isaac Newton--Father Augustine de Angelis, rector of the Clementine College at Rome, published under the highest Church authority his lectures upon meteorology. Coming from the centre of Catholic Christendom, at so late a period, they are very important as indicating what had been developed under the influence of theology during nearly seventeen hundred years. This learned head of a great college at the heart of Christendom taught that "the surest remedy against thunder is that which our Holy Mother the Church practises, namely, the ringing of bells when a thunderbolt impends: thence follows a twofold effect, physical and moral--a physical, because the sound variously disturbs and agitates the air, and by agitation disperses the hot exhalations and dispels the thunder; but the moral effect is the more certain, because by the sound the faithful are stirred to pour forth their prayers, by which they win from God the turning away of the thunderbolt." Here we see in this branch of thought, as in so many others, at the close of the seventeenth century, the dawn of rationalism. Father De Angelis now keeps demoniacal influence in the background. Little, indeed, is said of the efficiency of bells in putting to flight the legions of Satan: the wise professor is evidently preparing for that inevitable compromise which we see in the history of every science when it is clear that it can no longer be suppressed by ecclesiastical fulminations.[350b] III. THE AGENCY OF WITCHES. But, while this comparatively harmless doctrine of thwarting the powers of the air by fetiches and bell-ringing was developed, there were evolved another theory, and a series of practices sanctioned by the Church, which must forever be considered as among the most fearful calamities in human history. Indeed, few errors have ever cost so much shedding of innocent blood over such wide territory and during so many generations. Out of the old doctrine--pagan and Christian--of evil agency in atmospheric phenomena was evolved the belief that certain men, women, and children may secure infernal aid to produce whirlwinds, hail, frosts, floods, and the like. As early as the ninth century one great churchman, Agobard, Archbishop of Lyons, struck a heavy blow at this superstition. His work, _Against the Absurd Opinion of the Vulgar touching Hail and Thunder_, shows him to have been one of the most devoted apostles of right reason whom human history has known. By argument and ridicule, and at times by a lofty eloquence, he attempted to breast this tide. One passage is of historical significance. He declares: "The wretched world lies now under the tyranny of foolishness; things are believed by Christians of such absurdity as no one ever could aforetime induce the heathen to believe."[351] All in vain; the tide of superstition continued to roll on; great theologians developed it and ecclesiastics favoured it; until as we near the end of the medieval period the infallible voice of Rome is heard accepting it, and clinching this belief into the mind of Christianity. For, in 1437, Pope Eugene IV, by virtue of the teaching power conferred on him by the Almighty, and under the divine guarantee against any possible error in the exercise of it, issued a bull exhorting the inquisitors of heresy and witchcraft to use greater diligence against the human agents of the Prince of Darkness, and especially against those who have the power to produce bad weather. In 1445 Pope Eugene returned again to the charge, and again issued instructions and commands infallibly committing the Church to the doctrine. But a greater than Eugene followed, and stamped the idea yet more deeply into the mind of the Church. On the 7th of December, 1484, Pope Innocent VIII sent forth his bull _Summis Desiderantes_. Of all documents ever issued from Rome, imperial or papal, this has doubtless, first and last, cost the greatest shedding of innocent blood. Yet no document was ever more clearly dictated by conscience. Inspired by the scriptural command, "Thou shalt not suffer a witch to live," Pope Innocent exhorted the clergy of Germany to leave no means untried to detect sorcerers, and especially those who by evil weather destroy vineyards, gardens, meadows, and growing crops. These precepts were based upon various texts of Scripture, especially upon the famous statement in the book of Job; and, to carry them out, witch-finding inquisitors were authorized by the Pope to scour Europe, especially Germany, and a manual was prepared for their use--the Witch-Hammer, _Malleus Maleficarum_. In this manual, which was revered for centuries, both in Catholic and Protestant countries, as almost divinely inspired, the doctrine of Satanic agency in atmospheric phenomena was further developed, and various means of detecting and punishing it were dwelt upon.[352] With the application of torture to thousands of women, in accordance with the precepts laid down in the _Malleus_, it was not difficult to extract masses of proof for this sacred theory of meteorology. The poor creatures, writhing on the rack, held in horror by those who had been nearest and dearest to them, anxious only for death to relieve their sufferings, confessed to anything and everything that would satisfy the inquisitors and judges. All that was needed was that the inquisitors should ask leading questions[352b] and suggest satisfactory answers: the prisoners, to shorten the torture, were sure sooner or later to give the answer required, even though they knew that this would send them to the stake or scaffold. Under the doctrine of "excepted cases," there was no limit to torture for persons accused of heresy or witchcraft; even the safeguards which the old pagan world had imposed upon torture were thus thrown down, and the prisoner _must_ confess. The theological literature of the Middle Ages was thus enriched with numberless statements regarding modes of Satanic influence on the weather. Pathetic, indeed, are the records; and none more so than the confessions of these poor creatures, chiefly women and children, during hundreds of years, as to their manner of raising hailstorms and tempests. Such confessions, by tens of thousands, are still to be found in the judicial records of Germany, and indeed of all Europe. Typical among these is one on which great stress was laid during ages, and for which the world was first indebted to one of these poor women. Crazed by the agony of torture, she declared that, returning with a demon through the air from the witches' sabbath, she was dropped upon the earth in the confusion which resulted among the hellish legions when they heard the bells sounding the _Ave Maria_. It is sad to note that, after a contribution so valuable to sacred science, the poor woman was condemned to the flames. This revelation speedily ripened the belief that, whatever might be going on at the witches' sabbath--no matter how triumphant Satan might be--at the moment of sounding the consecrated bells the Satanic power was paralyzed. This theory once started, proofs came in to support it, during a hundred years, from the torture chambers in all parts of Europe. Throughout the later Middle Ages the Dominicans had been the main agents in extorting and promulgating these revelations, but in the centuries following the Reformation the Jesuits devoted themselves with even more keenness and vigour to the same task. Some curious questions incidentally arose. It was mooted among the orthodox authorities whether the damage done by storms should or should not be assessed upon the property of convicted witches. The theologians inclined decidedly to the affirmative; the jurists, on the whole, to the negative.[354] In spite of these tortures, lightning and tempests continued, and great men arose in the Church throughout Europe in every generation to point out new cruelties for the discovery of "weather-makers," and new methods for bringing their machinations to naught. But here and there, as early as the sixteenth century, we begin to see thinkers endeavouring to modify or oppose these methods. At that time Paracelsus called attention to the reverberation of cannon as explaining the rolling of thunder, but he was confronted by one of his greatest contemporaries. Jean Bodin, as superstitious in natural as he was rational in political science, made sport of the scientific theory, and declared thunder to be "a flaming exhalation set in motion by evil spirits, and hurled downward with a great crash and a horrible smell of sulphur." In support of this view, he dwelt upon the confessions of tortured witches, upon the acknowledged agency of demons in the Will-o'-the-wisp, and specially upon the passage in the one hundred and fourth Psalm, "Who maketh his angels spirits, his ministers a flaming fire." To resist such powerful arguments by such powerful men was dangerous indeed. In 1513, Pomponatius, professor at Padua, published a volume of _Doubts as to the Fourth Book of Aristotle's Meteorologica_, and also dared to question this power of devils; but he soon found it advisable to explain that, while as a _philosopher_ he might doubt, yet as a _Christian_ he of course believed everything taught by Mother Church--devils and all--and so escaped the fate of several others who dared to question the agency of witches in atmospheric and other disturbances. A few years later Agrippa of Nettesheim made a somewhat similar effort to breast this theological tide in northern Europe. He had won a great reputation in various fields, but especially in natural science, as science was then understood. Seeing the folly and cruelty of the prevailing theory, he attempted to modify it, and in 1518, as Syndic of Metz, endeavoured to save a poor woman on trial for witchcraft. But the chief inquisitor, backed by the sacred Scriptures, the papal bulls, the theological faculties, and the monks, was too strong for him; he was not only forced to give up his office, but for this and other offences of a similar sort was imprisoned, driven from city to city and from country to country, and after his death his clerical enemies, especially the Dominicans, pursued his memory with calumny, and placed over his grave probably the most malignant epitaph ever written. As to argument, these efforts were met especially by Jean Bodin in his famous book, the _Demonomanie des Sorciers_, published in 1580. It was a work of great power by a man justly considered the leading thinker in France, and perhaps in Europe. All the learning of the time, divine and human, he marshalled in support of the prevailing theory. With inexorable logic he showed that both the veracity of sacred Scripture and the infallibility of a long line of popes and councils of the Church were pledged to it, and in an eloquent passage this great publicist warned rulers and judges against any mercy to witches--citing the example of King Ahab condemned by the prophet to die for having pardoned a man worthy of death, and pointing significantly to King Charles IX of France, who, having pardoned a sorcerer, died soon afterward.[355] In the last years of the sixteenth century the persecutions for witchcraft and magic were therefore especially cruel; and in the western districts of Germany the main instrument in them was Binsfeld, Suffragan Bishop of Treves. At that time Cornelius Loos was a professor at the university of that city. He was a devoted churchman, and one of the most brilliant opponents of Protestantism, but he finally saw through the prevailing belief regarding occult powers, and in an evil hour for himself embodied his idea in a book entitled _True and False Magic_. The book, though earnest, was temperate, but this helped him and his cause not at all. The texts of Scripture clearly sanctioning belief in sorcery and magic stood against him, and these had been confirmed by the infallible teachings of the Church and the popes from time immemorial; the book was stopped in the press, the manuscript confiscated, and Loos thrown into a dungeon. The inquisitors having wrought their will upon him, in the spring of 1593 he was brought out of prison, forced to recant on his knees before the assembled dignitaries of the Church, and thenceforward kept constantly under surveillance and at times in prison. Even this was considered too light a punishment, and his arch-enemy, the Jesuit Delrio, declared that, but for his death by the plague, he would have been finally sent to the stake.[356] That this threat was not unmeaning had been seen a few years earlier in a case even more noted, and in the same city. During the last decades of the sixteenth century, Dietrich Flade, an eminent jurist, was rector of the University of Treves, and chief judge of the Electoral Court, and in the latter capacity he had to pass judgment upon persons tried on the capital charge of magic and witchcraft. For a time he yielded to the long line of authorities, ecclesiastical and judicial, supporting the reality of this crime; but he at last seems to have realized that it was unreal, and that the confessions in his torture chamber, of compacts with Satan, riding on broomsticks to the


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