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then be employed in religious instruction , whictlis now taken up With t ^ afching the first rudiments ; and shotild any sect think these insufficient , they should be at liberty to keep their children from the general school once or
twice a-week , for the purpose of tincturing them with their own peculiarities in their vestries , or where they please . Members of the Establishment will be the last to" object to such an arrangement , since they possess far ampler means than any of the
Dissenters . Before I lay down my pen , I must enter my earnest protest against the opinion , that , since we cannot reasonably expect perfection in any human
institution , we should , therefore , assent to the proposed measure with all its imperfections . I look for no perfection . Every system of education must be liable to defect . There are even
some establishments , altogether founded on false principle , so hallowed by age , and so knit into the very frame and constitution of the public mind , that I would not permit the
sacrilegious hand of hasty reform to attempt any amendment ; but never can I assent to the propriety of founding a new system upon false principle , and never will I put on the wedding-garment when education is to be sacrificed
by an unholy alliance with priestcraft . We are told that Mr . Brougham ' s Bill , by assisting the good cause at present , will enable it eventually to outgrow every defect , and that the ultimate
prevalence of knowledge and liberality is certain- I know that the good cause will eventually triumph , but that expectation , so far from affording a reason in favour of the Bill , forms an unanswerable objection to any such mischievous enactment . The continued
efforts of individuals , if not now shackled , will in time infallibly produce an universal conviction , that one of the most useful objects of public expenditure would be the promotion of public education on the most liberal
principle of universal comprehension . Then let us not retard the happy period by half measures , founded on a sacrifice of princi ple . The permitted evil may spread corraption through the whole system . Every page of history warns us to beware of small beginnings , and not to do evil that good may come . Age sanctifies the most preposterous establishments . It may cost a struggle
at first to obtain the best , but we shall find it ten thousand tunes mote ftifftcult to eradicate the e \ fif ivhgri We hfcVe permitted it to take fo 61 . What ajrrnment is ever used in favour of the Test
Laws , but that they have formed part of oar statute-books for nearly t * v centuries ? These laws alone staiid a sufficient beacon to Dissenters . Let us not again make shipwreck oh the delusive coast which deceived our
forefathers . Had they acted with firmness and principle when these odious laws were enacted , we should never hare been doomed to the mortification of being born with a brand on our
foreheads , nor held out to the world as unworthy even of the privilege of eligibility to' thfc office of exciseman , because we are too honest to join in converting the ordinance of the Lord's Supper into the farce of a sacramental test . K . K . K .
Account o / M . Sou&srain * 35 ?
Sir , Clapton , June 4 , 1821 . HAVE great pleasure in offering I to your correspondent N . ( p . 293 ) some information respecting the author of Le Platonisme Devoild ; for which I am indebted to a short article in the
Nouv . Diet . Hist . Paris , 1772 . N . Souverain , a native of Lower Languedoc , became the Minister of a Calvinistic Church in Poitou . Being ejected from his ministry , ( no doubt on a charge of heresy , ) he took reftige in Holland , till expelled from thence for refusing subscription to the Synod of Dort . He then withdrew into
England , where he was reputed a Socinian . He died in this country about the close of the 17 th century . he Platonisme DSvoile , which was at posthumous publication , his Catholic biographer describes as " un ouvrage recherchd par les incr&lules . " It was answered by Father Baltus , a Jesuit , in his * ' f ) 6 fense des Saints Peres
accuses de Platonisme / ' 4 to ., 1711 . Baltus , who died at Rheinis in 1743 had written , in 1709 , " La R ^ ponse & 1 ' Histoire des Oracles de Fontenelte / in favour of the common notions
respecting the reality and cessation of pagan oracles . Your co-respondent will find some further information in ' Jo&nhi Locke Philippus k trimborch , " May 11 , 1700 , among the Familiar Letters /* Liraborch chatf ^ S Le Ptat&hisme D&vo iU with exhibiting a style too sarcastic ,
vol . xvi . 3 A
Monthly Repository (1806-1838) and Unitarian Chronicle (1832-1833), June 2, 1821, page 357, in the Nineteenth-Century Serials Edition (2008; 2018) ncse.ac.uk/periodicals/mruc/issues/vm2-ncseproduct2501/page/33/