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verbiorum,) but the fragment before us does not occupy, an octavo page. He says also that it was written in the Irish language—“ Ibernice scriptus, ædificatione plurima plenus."*
These are all the canons attributable to St. Patrick which are known to exist, and it is probable that the great work, called in Irish “ Canon Phadruig,” (i. e., Canons
Canons of Patrick,) which Joceline tells ust was compiled by the saint, consisted of a complete collection of those and other similar synods of which we have now no remains.
Of his other works, genuine and suppositious, the following have been published by Ware and M. Villanueva :
I. “Confessio S. Patricii de Vita et Conversatione sua." M. Villanueva, in his edition of this valuable relic, has followed the text as published by the Bollandists, adding, in the margin, the various readings of the four MSS. which Ware had collated for his edition of the Opuscula. These were the book of Armagh, a MS. in the Cotton Library, and two MSS. in the library of the Dean and Chapter of Salisbury. This work has also been called “ Odoiporicon,” or “ Itinerarium," and its genuineness appears to be fully established. Of the indications of antiquity in which it abounds, one of the most remarkable is its quoting the Ante-Hieronymian version of the Bible. The version revised by Jerome, which afterwards became The Vulgate, had not been fully received in St. Patrick's time, although it came gradually into use very soon after. M. Villanueva does not appear to have been aware of the publication of Sir William Betham.
II.“ S. Patricii Epistola ad Christianos Corotici tyranni sub ditos.” This valuable document was first published by Sir James Ware from three MSS., one in the Cotton Library, and the others in the cathedral of Salisbury. M. Villanueva has given the various readings of these MSS. at the bottom of the page; but, in his text, he follows that published by the Bollandists, whom he has also followed in substituting the more correct title given above, instead of “ Epistola ad Coroticum” prefixed to it by Ware. In the MS., however, from which the Bollandists copied, the Epistle follows the Confession immediately, without any title; and the title they have given it is derived from internal evidence, for the writer says, (note 1), “Manu mea scripsi atque condidi verba ista danda atque tradenda militibus mittenda Corotici," which Sir William Betham, I know not why, has translated—“ I have written with my own hand these words to Coroticus, to be delivered by him to the soldiers.”The whole tenor of the Epistle is inconsistent with the supposition of its
* Jocel. Vit. S. Pat., cap. clxxxv.
| Irish Antiquarian Researches, vol. i., part. l.
being written to Coroticus, whom, in one place, he calls Coroticus the enemy, and adds, “ Mente enim longe est a charitate Dei, traditor Christianorum in manus Scottorum atque Pictorum.” And again—" Per tyrannidem Corotici, qui Deum non veretur.” The genuineness of this Epistle is, I believe, universally admitted. Like the Confessio, it also quotes the AnteHieronymian version of the Bible, and contains many other indications of antiquity which I have not space to particularize. I must refer to the valuable paper on the Life of St. Patrick in the “ British Magazine” for September, for further remarks on these interesting remains of the Apostle of Ireland.
III. “ Liber de Abusionibus Saculi.” This book has been published among the suppositious writings of St. Augustine and of St. Cyprian; but Ware suspects it to be the same as the book of Proverbs which Joceline mentions in a passage already referred to) as having been written by St. Patrick in the Irish language. The Latin style is purer and more elegant than that of the Confessio and Epistola ad Corotici Subditos; and the modern Vulgate of Jerome is everywhere quoted, from which Ware conjectures that it was translated into Latin by some Irish scholar, after the death of St. Patrick.* It is ascribed to St. Patrick in an ancient collection of canonst made in Ireland in the eighth century, by Haelhucar and Arbedoc. But, for further information, the reader must be referred to Ware's notes, and to the Monitum prefixed to this tract in M. Villanueva's edition of it.
IV. “ Liber de Tribus Habitaculis.” This work is ascribed to St. Patrick in an ancient MS. of it preserved in the Royal Library in Paris, and also in a MS. which Ware saw at Cambridge. It is printed by the Benedictine editors of St. Augustine among the spurious writings of that Father. By others it has been ascribed to St. Bernard. Ware, although he has published it in the Opuscula, decides against its having been written either by St. Patrick or by St. Augustine.
V. “ Charta S. Patricii, sive de Antiquitate Avalonica." This piece is published in the Bibliotheca Patrum,ll and also by Sir James Ware. But it is evidently of a period much later than that of the Irish saint. It bears an indication of its spuri
To this conjecture, Butler (Lives of the Saints, in 17 Mar.) and Dr. Lanigan (Eccl. Hist. of Ireland, vol. i., chap. vii., p. 371) appear to subscribe.
+ The same from which D'Achery extracted and published some canons. (Analect., tom. ix., p. 491.) Haelhucar is described as an abbot, and Arbadoc as an ecclesiastic (clericus). The names appear to be Anglo-Saxon, not Irish.
Opusc. S. Patr. ascripta (p. 138). Compare also Pamelii Annot. in S. (s. priani Op., and the Admonitio of the Benedictine edition of St. Augustine.
Op. S. Aug., tom. vi. Append. col. 159. # Tom. V., parte iii. 793, colon. 1618.
ousness in the very sentence with which it begins" In nomine Domini Nostri Jesu Christi, Ego Patricius humilis. Serviculus Dei, anno Incarnationis ejusdem 425, in Hiberniam a Sanctissimo Patre. Cælestino legatus," &c.; for it is well known that the era of our Lord's Incarnation was not in use in the fifth century, nor for at least four centuries after. The reduction of the cycle to the year of the Incarnation was first mentioned by Dionysius Exiguus, in 525, a century after the pretended date of this document.*
For other works ascribed to St. Patrick, and which are either evident forgeries or not now extant, the reader is referred to Harris's edition of “ Ware's Writers of Ireland,” and the authorities there quoted.t
I cannot conclude this paper, although it is already too long, without mentioning the remaining contents of the very valuable and learned work with which M. Villanueva has enriched the ecclesiastical history of Ireland. No. II. of the Appendix is a Latin hymn, consisting of twenty-three stanzas of four lines, each of which begins with a letter of the alphabet. It is in praise of St. Patrick, and is attributed to. St. Secundinus, a nephew and cotemporary of that prelate. M. Villanueva has added a Scholium, in which a crítical history of this curious piece is given. I
No. III. is a list of the cities, churches, and monastic houses of Ireland which were destroyed or spoiled in the various troubles, insurrections, and invasions of that country, from the death of St. Patrick to the twelfth century. The object of this very interesting collection of historical facts is, to account for the loss of that immense number of books and documents belonging to what we may call the patrician age of the Irish church, the
For other arguments against the authenticity of this piece, see the Bollandists' Acta Sanctor. Vit. S. Patr. ad 17, Martii. Prolegom., § 10, No. 72; and the Scholion which follows it in M. Villanueva's work, where it is printed in the Ap. pendix No. I.
+ See also Colgan, Trias Thaum., in quarto, Append. ad Acta S. Patricii,
* To the repetition of this hymn sundry miraculous virtues were attributed; by reciting it, persons have been known, as Joceline assures us, to pass invisible through the midst of their enemies. Many such stories of its power will be found in Colgan's notes on the Life of St. Aidan, Bishop of Ferns, (in 13 Jan,, n. xxxiii.) See also Jocel. Vit. S. Patr., cap. 177–9. “ Talium gratiarum (says M. Villanueva, p. 314,) quæ si tera sunt, inter res mirificas numerantur, judicium facere non ausim." M. Villanueva does not appear to have been aware that the very ancient copy of this hymn from which Ware transcribed it is still preserved in the Library of Trinity College, Dublin. It is written on vellum, in a character certainly older than the tenth century, with an interlineary gloss in Irish characters, and some marginal notes in Latin and Irish. The volume contains also several other curious pieces of a similar kind, and, what is very peculiar, short biographical notices of the authors of them are prefixed to several of the hymns. These are written in a mixture of Latin and Irish ; but all in Irish characters coeval apparently with the rest of the MS.
existence of which is attested by the Irish annalists and other sources of Irish history.
No. IV. is an essay on the mode of election and confirmation of bishops in Ireland after the death of St. Patrick. It is full of deep learning and extensive knowledge of ecclesiastical antiquity, and contains some curious historical information relative to the jurisdiction of the Archbishop of Canterbury over the Irish churches. Towards 'the end, the author seems a little perplexed at the necessity of reconciling primitive usages with the present practice of the church of Rome in Ireland.
This is followed (No. V.) by a long and tedious dissertation on the legend of the transformation of King Coroticus into a wolf! The serious discussion of such a question in twenty-nine closely printed pages, and with all the artillery of deep learning, appears to us Anglicans somewhat ludicrous; but a divine, in the Roman Communion, is obliged in his daily devotions to read so many legends equally incredible, that he may be well excused if he deal with points of this kind more tenderly, and be after all compelled to ensconce himself behind the saying of St. Augustine“ Illa quæ . . . . ab iis conscripta sunt qui non sunt divinitus docti, atque humanitus falli forte potuerunt, licet cuique, sine recta reprehensione, non credere."*
The appendix is closed (No. VI.) by a copious and very interesting list of the prelates and others eminent for sanctity, who flourished in Ireland in the fifth and sixth centuries, and who owed their piety and learning, under God, to the schools and churches established by the labours of St. Patrick in that country. The reader to whom this subject is new, will be astonished at the number of names contained in this Album Sanctorum, and at the abundance of the information we possess relative to that very singular period of the history of Christianity in Ireland.
It is gratifying, amid the din of polemical warfare, and the abominations of Irish political faction, to have a book like this published in Ireland, from the pen of a Roman-catholic priest; and although that priest be a foreigner, it is not perhaps unreasonable to infer from the appearance of such a work, and the encouragement it has received,t that learning and clerical pursuits have not been altogether exchanged, even by the Romish priests of Ireland, for the labours of political agitation, and the secret fostering of seditious opposition to the laws. May the example of M. Villanueva be followed by many in the communion to
De Civit. Dei, lib. xxi. + Much of that encouragement, however, it should be remarked, has been from protestants. Of the 137 subscribers to M. Villanueva's work, thirty, if I have counted right, are protestants; five have subscribed for two copies, and one for ten. Of the twenty-seven Romish bishops now in Ireland, thirteen only appear in the list of subscribers
which he belongs, for nothing but real learning and knowledge of ecclesiastical antiquity, on both sides, will ever bring us to a calm and fair discussion of the points so long disputed between Romanists and the Church of England.
MY FIRST VISITATION OF THE SICK.
It was in the spring of the year 18—- that I found myself at W-, a village in one of the southern counties, a newlyordained deacon, and about to enter upon my duties, as curate, under an aged vicar, who had been long in a state of decline. Young as I was, inexperienced, and naturally timid, I felt that I was about to plunge at once into a responsibility the most fearful, involving, as it did virtually, the sole charge of an ignorant flock. My vicar laid before me, in few words, the condition of the parish of which I was about to undertake the care. With the exception of the due performance of the morning and afternoon service each Sabbath day, many of the duties of the minister had, from unfortunate circumstances, been inadequately performed for several years. I attempted to correct the evils which had thus arisen, under the full conviction that there can be no failure in so holy a cause; and it pleased God to give me more success than I could have hoped. But to one duty, the visitation of the sick, I long looked forward with a hesitation almost amounting to fear, although it had always been my theory, as it is now my experience, that, next to preaching, there is no instrument more powerful than that of personal visitation in the hands of a zealous minister. Preaching establishes and enforces general truths-nay, it may sometimes strike the individual home, though no one person might have been particularized to the mind's eye, and though the shaft should fly with no particular aim.
“ A random shaft, in season sent,
May light upon some lurking harm,
Keble's “Christian Year," p. 324. Still the individual effect produced by preaching is always uncertain. It is when the official elevation is laid aside, and
“ Hibernicus's" wish is one in which all must heartily join. But does he know of any work like M. Villanueva’s from the pen of an Irish priest ?--Ed.
+ Perhaps, on second thoughts, the writer of this paper may be inclined to doubt whether this branch of the pastoral office comes after preaching; or, rather, whether preaching is the most powerful instrument in the hands of the Christian minister. Many circumstances may lessen the efficacy of preaching, but no accidental defects can have any unfavourable effect on the faithful exhortation given in private.-Ev.
VOL. VIII.-Nov. 1835.