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[285] convocation of the clergy under Elizabeth,
Chap VIII.}
though the square cap and the surplice found in the queen a resolute friend, and though there were in the assembly many, who, at heart, preferred the old religion, the proposition to abolish a part of the ceremonies was lost in the lower house by the majority of a single vote.1 Nearly nine years passed away, before the thirty-nine articles, which were then adopted, were confirmed by parliament; and the act,
1571
by which they were finally established, required assent to those articles only, which concern the confession of faith and the doctrine of the sacraments2— a limitation which the Puritans interpreted in their favor. The house of commons often displayed an earnest zeal for a further reformation;3 and its active
1565 Mar.
interference was prevented only by the authority of the queen.

When rigorous orders for enforcing conformity were first issued,4 the Puritans were rather excited to defiance than intimidated. Of the London ministers, about thirty refused subscription,5 and men began to speak openly of a secession from the church.6 At length, a separate congregation was formed; im-

1567 June
mediately the government was alarmed; and the

1 Strype's Annals, i. 338, 339. Hallam, i. 238. Prince, 289—293.

2 Strype's Annals, i. 460, 461.

3 Prince, 300.

4 Strype's Annals, i. 460, 461. Appendix to Strype's Parker, b. II. Do. 24.

5 Strype's Annals, i. 462.

6 Grindall, in Prince. Cartwright's Second Reply, p. 38. ‘Not for hatred to the estates of the church of England, but for love to a better.’

How little the early Puritans knew of the true results of their doctrines of independence of the state in religious matters, is evident from such passages as these, from Cartwright's Second Reply—‘Weretykes oughte to be put to breathe nowe. If this be bloudie, and extreme, I am contente to be so counted in the holie Goste.’ p. 115. ‘I denie that uppon repentance ther oughte to allow me any pardon of deathe.’ p. 116. ‘The magistrates which punish murther and are lose in punishing the breaches of the first table, be-gonne at the wronge end.’ p. 117. The writer continues, displaying intense and consistent bigotry.

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