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DECAY OF SUPERSTITION.
The mob of priests and pickpockets, headed by that arch hypocrite and noted pickpocket Nicholas Vansittart, held their annual Bible Meeting at the Mansion-house, on the 1st inst. where and when a dreadful lamentation took place (worse. even than the lamentations of Jeremiah over Jerusalem) about the spread of Blasphemy! Infidelity!! and Impiety!!! Although this famous book called the Bible is scattered about the country by thousands and tens of thousands, yet by the accounts of its own advocates, it produces nothing but blasphemy, infidelity, and impiety. When the Bible was kept in its proper place when it was locked up in the library of the Vatican at Rome when it was read by no one but the infallible Pope-when all the subordinate priests taught the Christian religion by hearsay; then there was no cry about those, dreadful crimes of blasphemy, infidelity, and impiety: there. were occasionally a few obstinate heretics who doubted some of the pretended miracles of the priests, to change bread and wine into flesh and blood, &c. but these even were sent to heaven by the comfortable burning of their bodies to save their souls from burning, the whole host of Christians jogged on to heaven merrily, and those who would not go willingly, were made to go as before mentioned. At least, they all, reached heaven by some means or other. The sinners were punished on earth to save their precious souls, and the Saints were invoked and paid for a speedy passage through purgatory. But what is the consequence now by the general circulation of the Bible? Just what the Pope. has foretold. All the evils. which he has pointed out in his manifestoes are daily occuring. Blasphemy, Infidelity, Impiety, and Heresy, make their way in proportion to the extent of the circulation of the Bible. When people knew nothing about its contents they could not doubt its being a moral and holy book, if the Pope, the Bishop, and the priest told them so: then what fools are those who wish to undeceive the multitude, and to expose all the fraud and craft of those priests? It is said of Dr. Faustus, who first printed the Bible, that he sold himself to the devil, or he never could have multiplied copies of the Bible so fast, and have sold. them so cheap: it was also said, because he used some red ink in printing them, that he wrote them with blood; and he was obliged to explain all those circumstances before the Inquisition, at Paris. It was at one time treason to read the Bible in England, at another time men were allowed to read it but not
women, at another time only gentlemen and gentlewomen were allowed to read and not the poor. There was certainly more roguish wisdom and less infatuation in those days than there is at present, at least, the Priests knew the real character of the Bible, and the effect of its circulation much better, and the Pope and Catholic priests still see where all the danger of discovery and detection lies. Even a modern English Bishop has asserted that the Bible Societies will destroy the Bible; by which he meant that they would make it so common and well known, that no one would believe in it. For our parts, although we know and feel it to be a collection of fables and traditionary tales, we feel a tales, we feel a secret and real pleasure to see it extensively circulated, and that too at the expense of our opponents and its supporters. We are morally certain that it is the best antidote to superstition; for when an individual has been trained up to feel a reverence for this book, it is impossible to impress upon the mind of that individual, that such a reverence is not due, unless the Bible be at hand for reference, for explanation, and for subsequent reflection. What effect would the most violent attacks upon, and exposure of, this book make if the reader or hearer of such attacks could not refer to the book for comparison? None whatever. And this is the sole ground for the lamentation about the spread of blasphemy, infidelity, and impiety. We use these words now as a matter of amusement: they begin to be heard with just the same effect as some of the ok heresies among the sects of the Christian religion. They excite nothing but laughter in every liberal mind to think how those Bible mongers are cutting their own throats. But softly! lest they should take the hint.
We cannot help remarking that we felt surprise at finding Mr. Sheriff Williams spouting at this meeting, and complaining that exertion was necessary, as infidelity was stalking abroad; and making an apology for the absence of his colleague Waithman. We hardly know whether we are to consider his speech as an ironical one or not, but we had fancied that, at least, we had a pair of tolerable and liberal-minded Sheriffs this year, as far as Whigs can be such; and that they would not suffer themselves to be the tools of any persecuting faction. In their official characters they must profess to be Christians, as a matter of course, but they are not called upon to make fools of themselves because they are in office. It is very probable their real characters will be put to the test on the score of persecution, before the close of their shrievalty, and they
should beware how they commit themselves; for there is a multitude arising who will dare be free and speak the truth in spite of opposition.
These pious creatures have, as we are informed, spent a whole day in the last month, in fasting and prayer, in consequence of the falling off in their societies and the rapid spread of Deism. We could wish that all the Christians would be content with fasting and prayer, and leave off persecution. They would then act up to the profession of their Gospel.
The moral inhabitants of this empire are resolved not to allow the immoral superstition of the Christians to make any progress in that empire: they have lately strangled a Missionary priest, and have banished another from Pekin after a twenty years' residence. This is something like a retaliation for their persecutions at home. Morality prevails over superstition in China, and the European priest wish to corrupt it. Morality struggles with superstition at home, and those same priests strive to persecute and destroy it.
TO MRS. CARLILE.
Oct. 27, 1820.
The calumny that has been raised and industriously circulated against you, has raised you in the estimation of your friends; and the explanation so explicitly, and so promptly given, has had the effect of sending it back, to fall with accumulated weight on the head of your calumniator. This is as it ought to be-as I anticipated it would be, if properly explained. But, for your consolation, I tell you, you, have the happiness to be accompanied by the greatest man in England for the tongue that has been base enough to slander you, has not spared Hunt, the great defender of public freedom. I am inclined to believe, that, henceforward all the venom he can vent will
never sting any body but himself. I beg of you to accept my thanks
With all possible respect,
FOR THE REPUBLICAN.
A CARD TO MR. R. CARLILE.
R. W. A.
I consider your widowed wife and family most cruelly used by that hypocritical and cowardly crew the vile Vice Society, a Best Judge, a base Barrister, and a biassed Jury, all of whom call themselves Christians, and profess to believe, in what they call the' word of God. But how does their practice agree with the precepts of the Bible? where it is said, "Ye shall not afflict any widow or fatherless child."--Exodus, chap. 22, ver, 22.
In aid of a subscription, that I hope will be opened for her, and to stem the present torrent of persecution, I have sent a small sum, wishing it may stimulate others to resist oppression in the same way; and that all such philanthropists may never know distress, but by the seeing of the eye, the hearing of the ear, and the feeling of a tender commisseration is the earnest désire of
Your friend and well-wisher,
Camberwell, Nov. 2, 1820.
J. J. BRAYFIELD.
We omitted, for want of room, last week, the following postscript to the letter of Mr. DONALD THISTLEPRICK:
Oct. 26th 1820.
My Dear Sir, and I assure you in sincerity that I hold you very dear. If I could write as well as yon, I should write exactly the very samne sentiments as you do-there seems but one mind between us. You will see how long it is since I commenced this very puny and ill-written letter; but, let my present shew that I have never forgotten you. No, I hold it the greatest treasure possible to read THE REPUBLICAN, "" and carefully lay them by till the volume is complete--then get them bound and laid by in lavender
for the instruction of my children when they are old enough to read them. This is the Bible I mean to give them. I have very much to say, but I must conclude per force. I am afraid Mrs. Carlile's lawyer sold her. I could have borne all; but when he said that Mrs. C. did not hold with or believe what she sold, it overcame me, as I know it will have the same effect on you. To say that either you or Mrs. C. would so far prostitute yourselves as to send into the world what you did not bold, is the very greatest outrage that has yet been committed upon you. If it was meant to purchase mercy it was ridiculous priests have no mercy.
FROM THE ODD FELLOWS.
"I cordially thank the officers and brothers of the various lodges of the order of Odd Fellows for this loyal and affectionate address.
"Loyalty is the unremitting associate, and benevolence the pervading principle of this ancient and estimable fraternity. Their loyalty is a sentiment which, while it implies their submission to the laws, will not sanction inhumanity or oppression in any of its forms. The officers and brothers of the various lodges of the order of Odd Fellows will not yield their assent to any principles of conduct that are adverse to justice, or in opposition to liberty.
"The princip'e of benevolence was implanted in the breast of man, as the means of perfecting the social union. In proportion as this principle is predominant in any assemblage of persons, the social union must be improved and, if such a principle could be universalized, it would supersede the severity of legal restraint, and the rigours of penal law. The happy effect of this principle, when it pervades small unions, or incorporations of men, is a presage of the blessed results that would "ensue, if it were diffused through any large portion of the body politic. What, then, would be the glorious effect if this principle were predominant in the councils of nations ?"
FROM THE LEATHER DRESSERS.
"I am deeply obliged by this loyal and affectionate address from the persons working in the Spanish and Morocco leather trade, the fellmongers, the kid and lamb-dressers, the furriers, skinners, and leathergrounders.
"The real object of the faction, by which I am persecuted, cannot be mistaken. They have been so long in the enjoyment of place that they think they have a sort of prescriptive right to the possession. Whoever will not be made the tool of their corruption becomes an object of their fear, and consequently of their hate. Hence integrity is their dread; and when integrity is united with talents, it is an object of additional alarm, and of double animosity. The corrupt interest of this faction is so adverse to the general interest that they are totally incompatible, Hence the close approximation, which the persecution of the Queen has occasioned between her interest and that of the people, has communicated an increased virulence to the malignity of my adversaries, "When the people are firmly united, the predominant sway of any