The Collected Works of Samuel Taylor Coleridge, Volume 10: On the Constitution of the Church and State

The Collected Works of Samuel Taylor Coleridge, Volume 10: On the Constitution of the Church and State

EDITED BY John Colmer
SAMUEL TAYLOR COLERIDGE
Copyright Date: 1976
Pages: 303
https://www.jstor.org/stable/j.ctt13x13rv
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  • Book Info
    The Collected Works of Samuel Taylor Coleridge, Volume 10: On the Constitution of the Church and State
    Book Description:

    Based on a comparison of early editions, manuscripts, and copies annotated by the poet himself, this edition provides a reliable text of Coleridge's last prose work, first published in 1830. Originally intended to influence public opinion on the Catholic Emancipation Bill of 1829, the work became a brief but brilliant synthesis of Coleridge's political and theological thought, whose influence extended well beyond the nineteenth century. John Colmer's introduction and notes place the work in its literary and historical context and they illuminate Coleridge's process of composition and the development of his ideas on Church and State.

    John Comer's introduction and notes place the work in its literary and historical context and they illuminate Coleridge's process of composition and the development of his ideas on Church and State.

    Originally published in 1976.

    ThePrinceton Legacy Libraryuses the latest print-on-demand technology to again make available previously out-of-print books from the distinguished backlist of Princeton University Press. These paperback editions preserve the original texts of these important books while presenting them in durable paperback editions. The goal of the Princeton Legacy Library is to vastly increase access to the rich scholarly heritage found in the thousands of books published by Princeton University Press since its founding in 1905.

    eISBN: 978-1-4008-6785-1
    Subjects: Language & Literature, History

Table of Contents

  1. Front Matter
    (pp. i-vi)
  2. Table of Contents
    (pp. vii-viii)
  3. LIST OF ILLUSTRATIONS
    (pp. ix-x)
  4. ACKNOWLEDGMENTS
    (pp. xi-xii)
    John Colmer
  5. EDITORIAL PRACTICE, SYMBOLS, AND ABBREVIATIONS
    (pp. xiii-xviii)
  6. CHRONOLOGICAL TABLE
    (pp. xix-xxxii)
  7. EDITOR’S INTRODUCTION
    (pp. xxxiii-lxviii)

    It is fitting that Coleridge’s last published prose work should have beenOn the Constitution of the Church and State(1830), for it is a brief but brilliant synthesis of the political and theological thinking of a lifetime. In it he writes as a great lover of the English Church, as a marginal note in a book of sermons makes clear:

    God knows my heart! there may be & I trust are, many among our Clergy who love, prize, and venerate our Church as earnestly and as disinterestedly as I do! But that any man, “on this side idolatry” can...

  8. On the Constitution of the Church and State
    • ADVERTISEMENT
      (pp. 5-10)
      S T C
    • CHAPTER I
      (pp. 11-22)

      The Bill¹ latelycpassed for the admission of Roman Catholics into the Legislaturedcomes so near the mark to which my convictions and wishes have through my whole life, since earliest manhood, unwaveringly pointed, and has so agreeably disappointed my fears, that my first impulse was to suppress the pages, whicheI had written while the particulars of the Bill were yetfunknown, in compliance with the request of an absent friend,² who had expressed an anxiety “to learn from myselfgthe nature and grounds of myhapprehension, that the measure would fail to effect the object immediately intended by...

    • CHAPTER II
      (pp. 23-31)

      A Constitution is the attribute of a state,i.e.of a body politic, having the principle of its unity within itself, whether by concentration of its forces, as a constitutional pure Monarchy, which, however, has hitherto continued to beens rationale,¹ unknown in history (B.Spinozae Tract. Pol. cap. VI. De Monarchiâ ex rationis praescripto),²—or—with which we are alone concerned—by equipoise and interdependency: thelex equilibrii,³ the principle prescribing the means and conditions by and under which this balance is to be established and preserved, being the constitution of the state. It is the chief of many...

    • CHAPTER III
      (pp. 32-36)

      The reading ofhistories,my dear Sir, may dispose a man to satire; but the science ofcHistory,—Historydstudied in the light of philosophy, as the great drama of an ever unfolding Providence,—has a very different effect. It infuses hope and reverential thoughts of man and his destination.¹ To you, therefore, it will be no unwelcome result, though it should be made appear that something deeper and better than priestcraft and priest-ridden ignorance was at the bottom of the phrase, Church and State, and intitled it to be the form in which so many thousands of the men...

    • CHAPTER IV
      (pp. 37-41)

      In the unfolding and exposition of any idea, we naturally seek assistance and the means of illustration from the historical instance, in which it has been most nearly realized, or of which we possess the most exact and satisfactory records. Both of these recommendations are found in the formation of the Hebrew Commonwealth. But, in availing ourselves of examples from history, there is always danger, lest that, which was to assist us in attaining a clear insight into truth, should be the means of disturbing or falsifying it, so that we attribute to the object what was but the effect...

    • CHAPTER V
      (pp. 42-49)

      After these introductory preparations, I can have no difficulty in setting forth the right idea of a national church as in the language of Elizabeth thethirdgreat venerable estate of the realm.¹ The first being the estate of the land-owners or possessors of fixed property, consisting of the two classes of the Barons and the Franklins, the second comprising the merchants, the manufacturers, free artizans, and the distributive class To comprehend, therefore, this third estate, in whom the reserved nationalty was vested, we must first ascertain the end, or national purpose, for which it was reserved.

      Now, as m...

    • CHAPTER VI
      (pp. 50-60)

      As a natural consequence of the full developement and expansion of the mercantile and commercial order, which in the earlier epochs of the constitution, only existed, as it were, potentially and in the bud; the students and possessors of those sciences, and those sorts of learning, the use and necessity of which were indeed constant and perpetual to thenation,but only accidental and occasional toindividuals,gradually detached themselves from the nationalty and the national clergy, and passed to the order, with the growth and thriving condition of which their emoluments were found to increase in equal proportion. Rather,...

    • CHAPTER VII
      (pp. 61-70)

      The National Church was deemed in thedark ageof Queen Elizabeth, in the unenlightened times of Burleigh, Hooker, Spenser, Shakspeare, and Lord Bacon, A GREAT VENERABLE ESTATE OF THE REALM;¹ but now by “allthe intellect of the king dom,” it has been determined to be one of the many theological sects, churches or communities, established in the realm; but distinguished from the rest by having its priesthoodendowed,durante bene placito,² by favour of the legislature—that is, of the majority, for the time being, of the two Houses of Parliament. The Church being thus reduced to a...

    • CHAPTER VIII
      (pp. 71-76)

      The¹ deep interest which, during the far larger portion of my life since early manhood,² I have attached to these convictions, has, I perceive, hurried me onwards as by the rush from the letting forth of accumulated waters by the sudden opening of the sluice gates. It is high time that I should return to my subject. And I have no better way of taking up the thread of my argument, than by restating my opinion,³ that our Eighth Henry would have acted in correspondence to the great principles of our constitution, if having restored the original balance on both...

    • CHAPTER IX
      (pp. 77-81)

      The clerisy, or National Church, being an estate of the realm, the Church and State with the king as the sovereign head of both constituting the Body Politic, the State in the large sense of the word, or the Nation dynamically considered (έν δuνάμεικατάπνεμα,¹i.e.as anideal,but not the lessactualand abiding, unity); and in like manner, the Nationalty being one of the two constitutional modes or species, of which the common wealth of the nation consists; it follows by the immediate consequence, that of the qualifications for the trusteeship, absolutely to be required of the order...

    • CHAPTER X
      (pp. 82-94)

      A treatise? why, the subjects might, I own, excite some apprehension of the sort. But it will be found like sundry Greek Treatises among the tinder-rolls of Herculaneum,¹ with titles of as large promise, somewhat largely and irregularly abbreviated in the process of unrolling. In fact, neither my purpose nor my limits permit more than a few hints, that may prepare the reader for some of the positions assumed in the second part of this volume.

      Of the King with the two Houses of Parliament, as constituting the State (in the special and antithetic sense of the word) we have...

    • CHAPTER XI
      (pp. 95-101)

      So much, in explanation of the first of thetwo Conditionsof the health and vigour of a Body Politic: and far more, I must confess, than I had myself reckoned on. I will endeavour to indemnify the reader, by despatching the second in a few sentences, which could not so easily have been accomplished, but for the explanations given in the preceding paragraphs. For as we have found the first condition incthe due proportion of the free and permeative Life of the State to the Powers organized, and severally determined by their appropriate and containing, or conducting nerves,...

    • CHAPTER XII
      (pp. 102-110)

      And here again the “Royalist’s Defence” furnishes me with the introductory paragraph: and I am always glad to find in the words of an elder writer, what I must otherwise have said in my own person—otium simul et autoritatem.¹

      “All Englishmen grant, that Arbitrary power is destructive of the best purposes for which power is conferred: and in the preceding chapter it has been shown, that to give an unlimited authority over the fundamental Laws and Rights of the nation, even to the King and two Houses of Parliament jointly, though nothing so bad as to have this boundless...

    • IDEA OF THE CHRISTIAN CHURCH
      (pp. 113-128)

      The practical conclusion from our enquiries respecting the originaand Idea of the National Church, the paramount end and purpose of which is the continued and progressive civilization of the community (emollit mores nec sinit esse feros),¹ was this: that though many things may be conceived of a tendency to diminish thefitnessof particular men, or of a particular class, to be chosen as trustees and functionaries of the same; though there may be many points more or less adverse to the perfection of the establishment; there are yet but two absolute disqualifications: namely, allegiance to a foreign power,...

    • On the Third Possible Church, or the Church of Antichrist
      (pp. 129-186)

      If our forefathers were annoyed with thecantof over-boiling zeal, arising out of the belief, that the Pope is Antichrist, and likewise (sexu mutato) the Harlot of Babylon:¹ we are more endangered by thetwaddleof humid charity, which (some years ago at least) used to drizzle, a something between mist and small rain, from the higher region of our church atmosphere. It was sanctioned, I mean, both in the pulpit and the senate by sundry dignitaries, whose horror of Jacobinism during the then panic of Property² led them to adopt the principles and language of Laud and his...

  9. EDITOR’S APPENDIXES
    • APPENDIX A PREFACE TO CHURCH AND STATE (1839)
      (pp. 191-200)
      HENRY NELSON COLERIDGE
    • APPENDIX B THE CATHOLIC EMANCIPATION ACT, 1829
      (pp. 203-210)
    • APPENDIX C MANUSCRIPT DRAFTS OF CHURCH AND STATE
      (pp. 213-224)
    • APPENDIX D1 MANUSCRIPT FRAGMENT ON THE CATHOLIC QUESTION
      (pp. 227-228)
    • APPENDIX D2 MANUSCRIPT FRAGMENT ON THE ORIGIN OF THE PRIESTHOOD
      (pp. 229-230)
    • APPENDIX E A LETTER FROM COLERIDGE TO THE REV JAMES GILLMAN WRITTEN IN A COPY OF CHURCH AND STATE
      (pp. 233-234)
    • APPENDIX F ANNOTATED COPIES OF CHURCH AND STATE
      (pp. 237-238)
  10. INDEX
    (pp. 239-303)