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JAMES FRASER SECOND BISHOP OF MANCHESTER BY THOMAS HUGHES, O.C. "He that would understand England must understand her Church, for that is half the whole matter. " Carlyle's Journals, FROUDE'S Life MACMILLAN AND CO. AND NEW YORK 1889 The Right of Translation and Reproduction is Reserved RICHARD CLAT AND SONS, LIMITED, LONDON AND BUNGAY. First Edition (Demy 8vo), Printed, February, 1887. Reprinted, March, 1887. New Edition (Crown 8vo), i Reprinted, 1889. PREFACE. THE thanks of the readers of this book, and of the Author, are due to Mrs. Fraser, and to the friends of the late Bishop who have kindly allowed selections from their letters to be published, or have furnished memoranda of their intercourse with him. Nothing else seems to be needed in the way of preface to a biography of this class. No one can doubt that this time has need of men of faith, simplicity, and courage, and of these qualities Bishop Fraser was a bright example. My work has been only to let him paint his own picture : " good wine needs no bush." T. H. 2067792 CONTENTS. PART I. CHAPTER I. PACE EARLY YEARS. BRIDGEXORTH AND SHREWSBURY SCHOOLS, LINCOLN COLLEGE, OXFORD. l8l8 1840 3 CHAPTER II. ORIEL, 1840 1848 24 CHAPTER III. CHOLDERTOX. I. THE NEW CHURCH. 1847 1849 55 CHAPTER IV. CHOLDERTON. II. CHANCELLOR OF SALISBURY THE NEW SCHOOLS SUB-COMMISSIONER ON ELEMENTARY EDUCA- TION. 1850 1860 83 CHAPTER V. UFTON NERVET. I. l86o 1866 . I IO CONTENTS. CHAPTER VI. PAGE AMERICA. 1865 125 CHAPTER VII. VFTON NERVET AND THE AGRICULTURAL CHILDREN'S COM- MISSION. 1866 1870 149 PART II. CHAPTER I. THE TRANSITION. 1870 ................. 183 CHAPTER II. BREAKING GROUND IN MANCHESTER. 1870 1871 ..... IQI CHAPTER III. MANCHESTER ; EXTRA DIOCESAN WORK ; HOUSE OF LORDS ; CONVOCATION. 1870 1871 .............. 217 CHAPTER IV. MANCHESTER, 18711875 CHAPTER V. MANCHESTER ; THE LABOUR QUESTION ; TRADES UNIONS ; CO-OPERATION, 1874 ................. 246 CONTENTS. CHAPTER VI. PAGE MANCHESTER, 1876 i88o 258 CHAPTER VII. MILES PLATTING, 1873 1874 2/9 CHAPTER VIII. THE CONVOCATION OF YORK, iSSl 1882 313 CHAPTER IX. MARRIAGE, l88o ; 18571880 324 CHAPTER X. MANCHESTER, l88o 1884 337 CHAPTER XI. ST. JOHN'S, CHEETHAM HILL, 1884, 1885 360 CHAPTER XII. THE LAST YEAR. 1885 . 373 APPENDIX 391 INDEX 401 "England felt the full heat of the Christianity which fermented " Europe, and drew, like the chemistry of fire, a firm line between "barbarism and culture. "The Church was the mediator, check, and democratic principle in "Europe Latimer, Wicliffe, Arundel, Cobham, Anthony Parsons, Sir "Harry Vane, George Fox, Penn, Bunyan, are the democrats, as well "as the saints, of their times. The Catholic Church, thrown on this "toiling, serious people, has made in fourteen centuries a massive "system, close fitted to the manners and genius of the country, at once "domestical and stately. In the long time it has blended with every- "thing in heaven above and the earth beneath." EMERSON'S English Trails "Religion."' PART I. " He who would understand England must understand her Church, for that is half of the whole matter." CARLYLE'S "Journal," FROUDE'S Life, vol. ii. p. 73. LIFE OF BISHOP FRASER. PART I. CHAPTER I. " There are who ask not if thine eye Be on them ! who in love and truth, Where no misgiving is, rely Upon the genial sense of youth : Glad hearts, without reproach or blot, Who do thy work and know it not." WORDSWORTH, Ode to Duty. EARLY YEARS. BRIDGENORTH AND SHREWSBURY SCHOOLS, LINCOLN COLLEGE, OXFORD. l8l8 1840. 18181832. JAMES FRASER was born on the i8th of August, 1818, at Oaklands House, in the parish of Prestbury, a Gloucester- shire village nestling under the Cotswolds. His father, a cadet of the Frasers of Durris, in Kincardineshire, had gone to India when very young and been successful as a merchant. He was thus able to return home, and settle, at a com- paratively early age. He married a daughter of Mr. John B 2 4 LIFE OF BISHOP FRASER. PART i. Willim, a leading Solicitor at Bilston, Staffordshire, and James was the eldest of their seven children, the others being five boys and one girl. For several years after his early childhood he spent most of his time at his grandfather's at Bilston, where he soon began to show the ability which marked him all his life. His early lessons gave him no trouble. " James seems always to be whistling about the house," his aunt said to a friend ; " and when I ask him if it is not time to begin his lessons, his answer is always the same, 'Oh, I finished them long ago.'" In 1824, when he was six years old, his parents moved to 5 Baring Crescent, Heavitree, near Exeter; for the educa- tional and economical advantages of that neighbourhood, and to be near old Indian friends of his father settled in that western city. Here James was sent to his first school, at Mount Radford (another neighbouring suburb of Exeter). " There I remained till I was fourteen. The Rev. C. R. Roper was my master, and an excellent one he was." So the Bishop of Manchester wrote forty years later, with his usual kindliness, of one who may have been a good teacher, but was scarcely fit for his post in other respects. One day, for instance, the boy had had his head buried in his desk during school hours, after the manner of boys, with the heavy lid hanging over him. The head master, passing along, tilted it, and let it fall on the boy's head, happily with no worse result than a bad headache. While at Mount Radford, Mr. Willim, his grandfather, writes of him to his mother (1825) : " Your pleasing accounts of all the dear children, and particularly the progress dear James is making in his learning, are most gratifying to us. That boy is a blessing to us all, and some day will be our pride and boast ; at least I fully anticipate this." CHAP. i. BRIDGENORTH SCHOOL. 5 18301834. His father died in 1832, when he was fourteen. Like other successful Indians, used to a busy life, and finding unemployed leisure unendurable, James Fraser the elder embarked the greater part of his property in iron mines, and other properties, which his experience did not enable him to manage successfully. The consequence was that his widow found herself comparatively poor, with six sons to bring up. She lived on at. Heavitree, but both she herself and the boys now spent much time with her own family at Bewdley, in Staffordshire, where her brother, John Willim, was now established as a Solicitor. Under his advice James was sent to Bridgenorth School, of which Dr. Rowley was then head master. The two years he spent there were quiet and profit- able, owing mainly to the ability of the doctor, but in part to the stimulating society of several school-fellows equally able with himself. These were the present Lord Lingen, Osborne Gordon, and Pulling, all afterwards with himself highly distinguished at Oxford, where Lord Lingen became Ireland scholar and a Fellow of Balliol, Osborne Gordon censor and tutor of Christ Church, and Pulling, Fellow of Brasenose. At Bridgenorth he got the nickname of " peach " from his blooming complexion. He left with his school- fellows the impression of a good and good-humoured boy, whose career was likely to be distinguished. The esteem in which Dr. Rowley held him appears by the following extract from the doctor's letter to his mother, dated May 1 2th, 1834, on his removal to Shrewsbury : " I am happy to say that your son is giving me very great satisfaction. I deeply regret his removal. Perhaps the master of a classical school is exposed to no severer mortification than that ot seeing one of his most promising pupils removed to another 6 LIFE OF BISHOP FRASER. PART I. school when he expects to reap the just reward of his past exertions and solicitude. But I have no reason to complain, and I confess the reason you give for placing your son under Dr. Butler is, without reference to the high merits of that excellent master, a most satisfactory one. I hope James will always continue to regard me as his sincere friend, and will visit me whenever he feels disposed to do so. Allow me in conclusion to say that if you find any difficulty in com- pleting his education I should be most happy at any time to resume the task, without any other remuneration than the pleasure I should derive from instructing a youth for whom I have a high' regard." Forty-four years later, in the autumn of 1878, Fraser preached the sermon at St. Leonard's Church, on the occasion of connecting the doctor's name with a painted window put up in the Church by his old scholars. "Dr. Rowley," writes Lord Lingen, ' eighty years old, but still vigorous, was present, and so were many of his scholars, including several, like the Bishop and myself, whose stand- ing fell in the last lustrum of half a century. The Bishop referred to his own widowed mother, and to Dr. Rowley's consideration for her at the time when he first came to the school, and generally recalled in his best manner the old gentleman's many claims on the affection and gratitude of his scholars. Then, recovering himself from mereeulogium, 'but Dr. Rowley,' he added, 'was a passionate man,' and made us all smile at this completion of the portrait in the presence of the subject of it, and of so many who could appreciate how true it was in no bad sense. The turn of mind which dictated this passage, a mixture of simplicity and absolute sincerity, and of a disposition to see the funny at the same time as the serious side of things, characterizes his episcopal charges, each of which he sent me as they were published, and I have always thought them the most CHAP. i. LIFE AT HEAVITREE. 7 exact reflex I ever met with 'of a writer in his writings." Readers will excuse this anticipatory digression for the valu- able light which they will find it throws on the character of our subject. His own early letters, many of which have been pre- served, are those of a bright, docile, vigorous boy, but not otherwise remarkable. One specimen will be enough, to his mother, temporarily absent from their Heavitree home, having left Aunt Lucy, her sister, in charge. September gf/i, 1830. "What do you think I want the kennel for ? Why, it is for a dog I think you were not a good guesser to think a rabbit, for rabbits are always kept in hutches, not in kennels Mr. Adams presented it to me on -my birthday. We have named it Rover, and it is just three months old to-morrow. Aunt Lucy, John, Edward and I went out to pick mushrooms yesterday afternoon, it being a half-holiday, and took the dog out with us. We picked none however, but had a most delightful walk as far as Salmon Pool. We set out at half-past three, and came home at six. Aunt Lucy has made some raised veal pies which are very nice. I am staying at home to-day, having a bad cold, and have taken some calomel. Our school is going on very well we have ninety-three boys, of whom forty are boarders. As we were at the Salmon Pool we met the Bishop (Phil- potts) walking alone, and Edward, when we first saw him at a distance, said ' Look at that funny old man with an apron on,' and, upon his coming nearer, ran up and came staring in his face. Aunt Lucy had met him at Colonel Mac- donald's. Now I have finished my letter and am going to play with my little dog, as John and Edward are gone to school. Mr. Tucker thinks it is a mongrel, but I say he is very much mistaken." 8 LIFE OF BISHOP FRASER. PART L. The letters of this period, of which this is a fair specimen, leave the impression that the writer was young of his age. Undoubtedly this was so in some respects, and remained so all his life ; but, on the other hand, in many ways his character was already mature while he was still a young boy. The desire to spare and help his mother in every way, above all in the care and training of his younger brothers, was the cause of this, and developed his remarkable instinct for management and business. As soon as the boys had any pocket-money " he always used to impress upon us," writes General Fraser, the last survivor, "the desirableness ofgrea- care with it, and to advise us never to spend all, but to pu something aside for rainy days." And again, " He frequentl) organised pic-nics for us from Exeter to Star Cross, Powder- ham Castle, on the Exe and Ship Canal. We boys used to pull a heavy four-oar and our mother would steer, and with one or two other ladies, an aunt or cousin, we used to have very happy times. James would do the best part of the work though as stroke ; and in this, as in most other things, we had to keep his time. But we were all rather shy of going for a walk in the country with him, as he would stride along at such a pace that few cared to keep up with him. On the other hand, he didn't always care about walking in the town with us, as we were seldom ' got up ' to his satis- faction." The walking habit lasted all his life. Forty years later, when the General was staying at Bishop's Court, he was rash enough to accept his brother's invitation to walk into Manchester. At the end of half a mile or so he had had enough, and came to a dead stop with, " I say, James, I see a 'bus coming down the hill ; I think I'll get into that and meet you in the city." His passion for horses, though kept sternly in check, was very strong. Their house in Heavitree was near the London CHAP. I. FAMILY ESTIMATES OF J. F. 9 Road, and he was fond of taking his younger brothers to see the "Quicksilver" mail pass, which did the 176 miles within the eighteen hours ; and the General, who generally went to see him start for school in later years, remarked that he always managed to get the box seat There are also signs in the early letters of a taste for shooting in the family of boys, which however was probably confined to small birds in that thickly inhabited and strictly preserved neighbourhood. " By the by," he writes to his mother from Shrewsbury, " has Ted taken over the gun to Mr. Short's? If not I wish he would do so directly, and take it over frequently, say once a fortnight or so, to let him see if it is clean or not." ..." The Wonder there's a coach for the money came here this day (Saturday) week with all our fellows and their luggage on, as full as it could hold, in fourteen hours and three-quarters, 159 miles. The Antelope was fifteen hours." Amongst the sedulously preserved packets of papers of this time, tied up and carefully labelled by his mother, are specimens of James's exercises, from which the following prophetic sentences (1829) may be taken as characteristic: " Education is the source of happiness to society. A man without education can be but little better than a beast. The advantages of it are very evident, since it produces all the happiness of which man is possessed," &c., &c. From the first Mrs. Fraser heard nothing but praise of her eldest boy, a much-needed support in presence of the loss of her husband and consequent embarrassments. How his reputation grew in the family circle may be gathered from an extract or two from the letters of this period. Mr.J. Willimto Mrs. Fraser. July igtA, 1829. "I will drive them (James and John) to Birmingham, and see them io LIFE OF BISHOP FRASER. PART i. safely off. Probably I may meet with some gentleman on the coach under whose care I can place them, but if not I am satisfied they are both capable of taking care of them- selves. And now, my dear Helen, having thus arranged for the departure of my two dear grandsons, it will give you heartfelt pleasure to hear what good boy's they have been all the time they have been with us. Every one says what fine boys they are, and I assure you we are all quite proud of them. They are full of spirits, but have not, as you suspected, been too noisy for their grandmamma and me, who are well pleased to see them agree so well with each other. They are clever boys, especially James, who has talents of a very superior kind, and will show themselves to great advantage in a few years I have not the least doubt. They have greatly enjoyed themselves in the excursions to Dudley Castle, &c., and it is a great satisfaction to see them in such fine health a sound mind in a sound body is the greatest blessing on earth." Miss Lucy Willim to Mrs. Fraser (same date). " You will be pleased to read dear father's account of the boys. They really have been very good children. Catherine has been quite astonished at James's talent and quickness in French, much more so than Anne even, and she was very quick. She says he has quite surprised her, he has such a clear head, strong memory, and good judgment. They have behaved very well indeed, particularly having been so confined to the house." In January, 1833, Miss Willim writes to her sister, Mrs. Fraser : " His grandfather is constantly exclaiming, ' What a nice lad James is, and what an excellent character he has gained himself ! Do tell poor Helen about him, it will be CHAP. I. FINANCIAL DIFFICULTIES. II so cheering to her. "Write to-day.' " This Aunt Lucy does, nothing loath, adding, " Dear James left us yesterday morn- ing, and I am happy to say in excellent spirits, nor did they flag, I understand, when his uncle parted from him. They went in John's gig, James driving. John dined at the Rowleys', and had a good deal of conversation with them. He first saw Mrs. Rowley, who spoke of dear James in the highest terms, and on John's saying how much gratified his poor mother was with Mr. Rowley's letter respecting him, she replied, ' I am sure he is every way deserving of what was said of him, for we never had a pleasanter boy in our house ; and Mr. Rowley is equally satisfied with him in his studies.' She also said : ' I know that Mr. Rowley, rather than part with him, would sooner lower his terms if neces- sary.' Mr. Rowley, too, spoke most highly of James, as to his talents and industry as well as his general conduct. After he had read your letter" [telling of her husband's death, and her own reduced circumstances] " he immediately said, ' James shall have his single bed as usual ' ; and on being paid his bill, returned to John the charge that had been made for it for the last half year. He observed, too, that for the future he did not think his half-yearly bill would amount to more than z6L or zy/." Here is a specimen extract from the Bridgenorth letters : "February 22nd, 1833. A good many boys have left, and I am now in the study by right, but do not sit up there because those in the study do not like moving up into the head room, and I do not press them as I am very well contented where I now am, being head boy of the lower room, and eighteenth in the school. I take one penny publication called the Penny Cydoptzdia, which is to be completed in seven years, and one twopenny one, The Thief ; both of them I think are use- 12 LIFE OF BISHOP FRASER. PARTI. ful and entertaining, and I may as well lay out my money in those as in anything else. They are very cheap, and Mr. Rowley recommends them strongly. I should think John and Edward would like to take them in. As you see I here send you a copy of my will, which I have been advised to make by Uncle John, who told me I was of age to do so and to leave my property in what way I liked, as he said the uncertainty of life was so lamentable. As this will meet the eye of Aunt Willim, I must tell her that she put me up no soap, toothbrush or powder, which I have been obliged to buy and am now supplied. With me the time passes very quickly now; at first it was just the contrary. If any of you like it I will send you every month a part of The Thief an<\ Encyclopedia^ I can easily do so. I have covered all my books with brown paper and I hope they are in good order : they are all right, none missing when I came. We have had snow here and a great deal of snowballing, from which I caught a cold which I have at present. I beliave this is the longest letter and the biggest sheet I ever wrote on, and having exhausted my news I must conclude, begging to be remembered to all friends, and hoping you are in better spirits than when I saw you last, and that John and Edward are industrious at school." The will, a copy of which was.-enclosed, was as follows : " I, James Fraser, late of Baring Crescent, in the County of Devon, but now a student at Bridgenorth School, in the County of Salop, being in the fifteenth year of my age, do hereby give and bequeath all my property of what description soever to my dearly beloved mother, Helen Fraser, to be made use of by her according to her discretion." Uncle John by the same post informs his sister that " dear James has drawn it himself without any instructions from any of us." CHAP. I. DR. BUTLER ON J. F. 13 18341836. In 1834, James, as we have heard already, was removed to Shrewsbury, then enjoying a very high reputation under Dr. Butler. His mother, who was anxious to give him every possible advantage, at any sacrifice to herself, could not have chosen better. A neighbouring squire, a friend of Mr. Willim, whose son, a year older than James, had been for several years at the school, volunteered that the new boy should go under this son's wing. The new boy however was at once placed a form or two above his protector, and otherwise proved himself, from the first, quite able to hold his own. For eighteen months Dr. Butler continued head master, until the eve of his appointment to the Bishopric of Lichfield. Fraser had come under his own hand in the sixth form, and had gained his entire approval from the first. " It gives me great pleasure," he writes, on March 3oth, 1835, " * continue my good reports of Fraser. No boy can be more attentive, or conduct himself better than he does. He cannot fail of doing well." At the previous Christmas, his mother had thought of allowing him at once to go up to Oxford, where she would seem to have had some offer of a Bible clerkship, or other position of that kind. As to this however Dr. Butler writes even peremptorily : " With regard to his admis- sion at Oxford, it must not be thought of this year. It is of consequence that he should go there with every possible ad- vantage, which he will do with much greater prospects of success if he stays at school long enough to become an accomplished scholar. For he must be capable of offering himself for the highest distinctions, and these I flatter myself he is likely to attain. I am very anxious for his welfare and improvement, and desire to promote it by every means in my power." I 4 LIFE OF 'BISHOP FRASER. PART i. In January, 1836, Dr. Butler informed the parents of boys at Shrewsbury that he intended to resign at mid- summer. In reply, Mrs. Fraser writes, January 26th, 1836, thanking the doctor for his " continued liberality in allowing James the benefit of private tuition gratis " ; and begs for the doctor's influence with his successor, to continue " the interest which you have so warmly evinced towards him yourself; for, unaided by your influence and intercession, I cannot look for it at the hands of a stranger, who is totally unacquainted with my peculiar situation and limited means." Dr. Butler more than satisfied the widow's hopes. His successor, Dr. Kennedy, afterwards Professor of Greek at Cambridge, continued the private tuition, and even with better results than his more widely famous predecessor. Fraser declared again and again in later years that his three months at Shrewsbury under Kennedy were more valuable than any other six, either at school or Oxford, for during that time, and under him, he " learnt how to read an ancient author." His mother's trials, severe as they had been, were des- tined to be yet heavier. Almost before the mourning for her husband had ceased, she lost her only daughter, a girl of three, and Stewart, a boy of five, by scarlet fever. James was then at Shrewsbury, whence he wrote a letter which his mother always kept by her ; and, showing it to a friend in Manchester shortly before her death, spoke of it as having been her most precious treasure in all the intervening years. The part of it which may be published runs : " I am fully aware how you will miss her innocent prattle, her lisping tongue, her happy, affectionate looks. I full well know that you have drunk the cup of affliction to the dregs; and, though one who might have been a prop and solace to an CHAP. I. DR. BUTLER'S SPEECH IN SCHOOL. 15 affectionate mother's declining years has thus been untimely snatched away, yet I trust, my fondest mother, it will ever be the proudest boast of her six remaining sons to make the comfort and happiness of one, to whose maternal solicitude they are all so deeply indebted, their first attention and their earliest care. And be assured, my dearest mother, that, so long as it shall please God to prolong my days upon earth, it will be the happiest moment of my life to contribute to the comfort and to alleviate the cares of that mother who has undergone so many trials, who has denied herself so many indulgences, for, and who has bestowed so much attention on, her ever dutiful and most affectionate son, James Fraser." To his Mother. Oct. i6/A, 1834. " Uncle need not fuss himself about the Doctor becoming a Bishop, as it is all a fad. He came into the school the other day with a new gown, and I will relate to you as nearly as possible the speech he made on that occasion. ' When Lord Chesterfield,' said he, 'was Viceroy of Ireland, there was a report that he was going to leave, and as he did not know how to contradict the report, for he thought writing in the paper would be no good, he bethought himself, of the following expedient. He called his gardener and told him to plant a whole field with asparagus, and as that is three years in coming to perfection so the people might know he was not going to leave them. In like manner,' said the Doctor, ' I have bought a new gown with the like intention ; indeed, I have long known who is to be appointed to the Bishopric, but I mean to remain master of this school so long as my health and strength will permit.' On which the boys with one accord gave a tremendous shout of applause. So my dear uncle need not trouble himself any further about the matter." 16 LIFE OF BISHOP FRASER. PART I. Although his mother was not certain that she should be able to send him to the University, his name was entered at Balliol when he was seventeen ; and Dr. Butler sent him up to compete soon afterwards for a scholarship at Corpus. He was not successful, to the great subsequent regret of the authorities of that College. In March, 1836, he was again sent up, to try for a Lincoln scholarship, worth 387. a year. This time he was singularly successful, owing mainly to the fact that Richard Michell, the best known and most success- ful of all " coaches " of that day, was Dean of Lincoln College, and one of the examiners. With him, Fraser's first paper settled the question, and he was elected by acclamation. The scholarship was an open one, and there were twenty-six candidates, of whom twenty were already in residence, and there was no limit as to age. The success therefore was a very great one. Here is his letter to his mother on getting back to Shrews- bury : " You were doubtless somewhat surprised, and I hope delighted, to hear of my good fortune at Oxford in gaining the Lincoln scholarship, for it was rather a sudden thing altogether. I will, however, give you the whole history of the transaction. On Monday morning the Doctor called me up, and asked me if I was entered anywhere, as he thought it was time I should be. I answered ' no,' as I forgot at the time that I was entered at Balliol, or rather I did not know it till Uncle John wrote me word that such was the case. The Doctor then told me there were four vacant scholarships at Lincoln, which he thought a very good opening, and that I must be up there on Thursday next. Now this was Monday. But as he did not know their value, whether they were worth the expense of going up for, he told me to write to Robert Dukes, who was here, and is now a scholar of Lincoln, and make all requisite inquiries. I wrote immedi- CHAP. I SCHOLARSHIP AT LINCOLN. 17 ately, and also to Uncle John, and received both their answers on Wednesday afternoon, viz. : Uncle John's that I should be guided by the Doctor ; and Duke's, that the value of them was 387., which was worth 6ol. at any other college, as Lincoln is a very cheap one, and that my expenses exclu- sive of my scholarship would not exceed 1507. On receipt of these I resolved to go, and accordingly the Doctor furnished me with 5/. for my expenses, which by the by was scarcely sufficient, as I had to stop a week in Oxford, and I started per the Nimrod to Birmingham, at five A.M. on Thursday, got there in time for the Oxford coach ' the Day,' and arrived at my destination at six P.M. Early next morn- ing I presented myself to the Sub-Rector and gave in my credentials. We then went in for examination, which con- tinued till Tuesday evening, when at four o'clock I was delightfully surprised to hear that I was elected first scholar of Lincoln. Next day I matriculated, and became a member of the ancient University of Oxford. I shall be obliged to reside in October, which is somewhat sooner than I expected." Uncle Willim, who had sent the news to his sister, is, naturally enough, jubilant over, "James's glorious success," the financial difficulty of an Oxford career being now satis- factorily settled. "James," as second boy in Shrewsbury School, his uncle goes on to say, " is one of the committee of three who are getting up the testimonial service of plate to Dr. Butler on his resignation. He has been asked to Archdeacon Bather's, to meet Mr. Whately, Q.C., leader of the circuit, and other barristers, old Shrewsbury boys, who are also getting up a separate testimonial." James is quite a lion amongst all Shrewsbury boys, past and present, after his Lincoln feat ; and Uncle Willim thinks " he ought now to add another guinea to his subscription of two guineas to c iS LIFE OF BISHOP FRASER. PART i. the school testimonial if it can be done without being remarkable, several of the other sixth form boys having given three, and even four guineas." He went into residence at Lincoln in January, 1837. Probably no man's career as an undergraduate at Oxford was ever more creditable, or more monotonous, than his. His most intimate friend, and old schoolfellow, Sale, by this time a demy of Magdalen, who was with him almost daily, can recall nothing but their regular walks in the way of exercise and diversion. "We were good friends," Lord Lingen writes, " but not particularly intimate." He read hard from the first day of his residence, without a break. He could not afford a private tutor ; but was in this matter really at no great disadvantage. For Michell, who from the day of his scholarship examination had formed a very high estimate of his abilities, gave him constant advice and help without fee, for the credit of the college. The great " coach's " foresight and liberality were amply rewarded in the sequel. His rigid economy, as creditable as it was rare in those days, is spoken to by all his friends. Even in the matter of books, Sale and others agree that his library was most incon- veniently small. He never rode at Oxford till after he had taken his degree. And it must be remembered that he was not one of those who are born students, and who never appreciate the yvfivaariK^ in education. On the contrary, the testimony of all those contemporaries who knew him most intimately agrees that he was never a student in the true sense of the word, though he had that most enviable power, which Charles Kingsley possessed perhaps in greater perfection than any other man of that generation, of drawing the heart out of a book on a slight, and apparently cursory CHAP. i. SCHOLAR OF LINCOLN. 19 reading. He was indeed essentially (to use again his favourite Aristotelian language) dvrjp TrpaKTtKos rather than OetDprjTLKos. He had magnificent thews and sinews, and was by no means indifferent to their cultivation ; though he chose deliberately to restrict himself, in that department, to the regular use of heavy dumb bells ; while for horses, as has been already noted, he had something approaching to a passion. Then again, he was of an extremely social tempera- ment, and made and kept friends with quite unusual ease. He was also decidedly fond of good dress as well as good company. But, as an undergraduate, he gave no parties, and went to none ; and dressed with great economy. No man had greater natural taste for enjoyment, or allowed his natural taste less play. The result was that the stern self-restraint of these three years gave him the most perfect self-control through life. Liberal and hospitable as he became the moment he felt his financial position a safe one, he never permitted himself, or would tolerate in others, silly or wasteful expenditure of any kind. The Church of which he became so eminent a Pastor was said, half jestingly, half approvingly, by Emerson, " to believe in a Providence which does not treat with levity a pound sterling." Whether true or not of the body, the saying was certainly true of him. No part of his ministry was more remarkable, or more success- ful, as we shall see, than his teaching of thrift, by precept and example, to his poor. 1837- In 1837 he was an unsuccessful candidate for the Hertford Latin scholarship. His first University distinction came in his second year, when he went in for the Ireland scholarship. Out of a c 2 20 LIFE OF BISHOP FRASER. PART i. large field, he and one other candidate were selected as un- questionably the best. The other was his old Bridgenorth schoolfellow, Lingen, now a scholar of Trinity. Additional papers were set to these two, and still the result remained doubtful. It was said at the time that the event was decided by counting the accents in a Greek paper. The recently published autobiography of Archdeacon Denison, however, has thrown new light on this famous contest, and does not confirm the contemporary story. The Archdeacon was one of the three examiners, and, it seems, was in favour of Lingen ; while the other two inclined to Fraser. They sat up till late in the night debating the matter, and the Archdeacon names it as a triumph of his powers of persua- sion, or of his pertinacity, that he brought his colleagues round to his view. However this may be, Lingen was elected, but the words "Jacobus Fraser a coll. Line, quam proxime accessit " were added to the usual announcement. The next year he was "facile princeps" and duly elected Ireland scholar. 1839. In the autumn of this year, 1839, the last before his degree, Michell took a reading party to Shanklin. Amongst them was Fraser, whom he was coaching for love and the honour of Lincoln. Mr. J. A. Froude was one of the party, and the result was a life-long intimacy between the two pupils, though in later years they met but seldom. " He was the-lightest-hearted of us all," writes Mr. Froude, " I used to think him even boyish ; but Michell told me after the examination that he had done enough for ten firsts. When he stood for the Oriel Fellowship I recollect observing to Church " (then a tutor of Oriel, now Dean of St. Paul's) " that, however good a scholar he might be, he had no CHAP. i. FIRST-CLASS AND FELLOW OF ORIEL. 21 original thought. Church told me after the examination that his thought was young rather than absent. So it always remained." 1840. He came out in the first class in the examination in November, 1 839, when he took his bachelor's degree ; and in April, 1840, was elected Fellow of Oriel. On this crowning triumph, his old schoolfellow and faithful friend, C. J. Sale, wrote thus to his mother : " Now that your son has finished his ordeal at the University in the most brilliant and exem- plary manner, I cannot refrain from offering you my heartfelt congratulations at the success of my sincerest friend, in which I am confident all his friends, by whom he is equally loved, will join. You have indeed reason to be proud of James, as it has never been my lot to see any young man bear his numerous honours in a manner so humble, and free from arrogance. I can only add my sincere prayer for his success through life ; and with pleasure anticipate that it will equal, as it cannot surpass, that which he has already so nobly earned for himself. Your pleasure must have been doubly enhanced at hearing of his election, as he informed me you had given up nearly all hope, from his account of himself. But this event has now confirmed my idea, that the word ' fail ' is not to be found in his dictionary. I do not fear its appearance there." The allusion in Sale's letter is to the following letter from James to his mother : "LINCOLN COLLEGE, OXON., "April i$th, 1840. " MY DEAREST MOTHER, As in your letter before last you said you had been expecting to hear from me, which expectation has not yet been gratified, I sit down to write 22 LIFE OF BISHOP ERASER. PARTI you a few hurried lines, hoping you will, upon due consider- ation of my existing circumstances, excuse their brevity and conciseness. Let me first ask you if you have had the April report from Addiscombe ; if so, let me know the numbers and position which Ted occupies. I am reading as hard as I can, though I fear with little prospect of success ; not, however, so much from the number, as from the quality of my rivals, or rather, rival. For though (it being nearly a close Fellowship) there are only four competitors for the same* honour with myself, yet one of these is as formidable a one as could have been selected for me out of the whole University. He rejoices in the name of Mountague Bernard, and is a B.A. of Exeter College : he certainly only got a second class, but as that was nearly three years ago and he has been reading with this examination in prospect ever since, his acquirements at the present moment may be, and probably are, enough to give him a double or treble first in the schools, were such an honour attainable. In this interval he has gained two English essays (which are considered equal to a first class) and beat several superior first-class men for them, and as the style of the Oriel examination is toto ctelo different from that in the schools which I passed in Michaelmas, and consists chiefly in essay writing and meta- physics, wishing to make men display powers of deep and original thinking, I feel too perceptibly my own weakness on those points to entertain the least anticipations of success, however 'devoutly to be wished for' such a consumma- tion might be ; in fact my reading has not as yet been extensive enough to enable me to stand a good chance at this, by far the most trying examination in Oxford, so I hope you will be no more disappointed than I shall be, in case of a failure. As for what John Hughes says, I never heard such stuff in my life, nor was any man ever dignified here CHAP. I. FELLOW OF ORIEL. 23 with such flattering appellatives as his imaginative and creative brain has invented for my unworthy self. And as for its being considered certain that I shall get the Oriel, I myself heard two to one laid against such an event at a wine-party the other evening. The examination begins on Monday and concludes on Thursday ; the result is declared on Friday. I was occupied all yesterday in writing Latin letters of recommendation to my sixteen future judges at Oriel, and you may imagine was tolerably tired at the conclusion. Best love to all, and believe me, my dear mother, " Your very affectionate son, " JAMES FRASER." On the eventful Friday the announcement of his success was made in Oriel Hall, and he wrote to his mother : " MY DEAREST MOTHER, I am delighted to be able to inform you that you may congratulate your first-born on being this day elected Fellow of Oriel. I have just paid my devoirs to the Provost and Fellows on the occasion, and shall be formally admitted in chapel at one o'clock, and conclude the day with them at dinner at six. The result was most unexpected, and consequently the more delightful to me. I intend leaving this on my long promised visit to Pryse Gordon, Esq., on Monday next, as I cannot do so before, having various preliminary duties to discharge : from him I shall take a hasty peep at the Bilstonians. I am vain enough to believe my success will be the occasioil' of delight to many others out of my own immediate circle of acquaint- ance, in which comfortable self conceit, being in a great hurry and having plenty of other letters to write, I will at present only subscribe myself, with best love to all, as your delighted and affectionate son, "JAMES FRASER. " Friday Morning, twelve o'clock." CHAPTER II. " Wherewithal shall a young man cleanse his way ? Even by ruling himself after thy word." Ps. 119. ORIEL, 18401848. 1840. ON April 24th, 1840, he was elected Fellow of Oriel with Mr. Christie and Canon Cornish. The latter became his life-long friend, and followed him thirty years later as rector of Ufton. An Oriel Fellowship was in those days the blue ribbon of the University. Balliol had indeed lately followed the lead of Oriel in this matter, but besides these two there was no other college in Oxford the Fellowships of which were in those days open. Those of Oriel with the exception of five had been so for many years, with the result that quite an unusual number of the most eminent Oxonians of the early decades of the century had been, or still were, Fellows or members of the college. Under the government of such provosts and tutors as Eveleigh, Coplestone, Whately, Davison, and their col- leagues, the picked men of the University, Oriel had carried off honours in the schools, prize poems, and essays, much in excess of the proportion which its scholars and under- graduates bore to those of other colleges. And this lead was not confined to the ordinary University curriculum. CHAP. ii. ORIEL COLLEGE. 25 The Oriel common room was for more than a generation the centre of intellectual activity, and of religious and philosophical thought and speculation. There is scarcely one of the modern heresies or orthodoxies which have moved England in this century which was not either born or nourished within its walls. There Whately's common- sense Christianity, Arnold's broad religious and liberal sympathies, Blanco White's and Hampden's speculations, had found voice ; and, in succession to them, the leaders of the High Church revival were now publishing the Tracts for the Times, and inaugurating the movement which, when Fraser was elected a Fellow, was stirring the college, the University, and the Church to their inmost depths. Keble had indeed resigned his Fellowship for some years, but his influence was strong with his successors. Hurrell Froude was lately dead ; but Newman, though residing at Littlemore (a chapelry attached to St. Mary's), still held his Fellowship, and was often in the common room ; while of younger men the late Charles Marriott and the present Dean of St. Paul's were tutors of the college, and amongst the most zealous and influential of the new school. A man of wide sympathies, and the power of guiding and ruling others, which so often springs from wide sympathies, might have turned such materials to the best account, and have used the exceptional zeal and talents of the staff from whom he had to select for the maintenance of the high character and traditions of the college ; but such a man in those years was not forthcoming. Dr. Hawkins, the Provost, was a fine scholar and a high-bred gentleman ; but cold of tempera- ment, and stiff and punctilious in manners ; a high and dry churchman of the old school, very methodical, very conser- vative, who looked even on his old friend Arnold with some misgiving, and was entirely out of sympathy with those who 2 6 LIFE OF BISHOP FRASER. PART I. were now turning the academical and religious world upside down. Be the reason what it may, the battle which was raging in the Church and University round Tract XC. in- terested Erovost and Fellows far more deeply than the ordinary routine work of the college, and that work suffered accordingly. The old tradition, which had obtained even amongst the undergraduates of Oriel who were content with the pass schools that the cultivation of the intellect was at least one main object of life at the University still lingered in the college, but only as a tradition. With the exception of Christ Church, there was at this juncture probably no college in Oxford less addicted to reading for the schools, or indeed to intellectual work of any kind. The undergraduates in residence in these years (1840-47) were seldom above fifty in number, and of these an average of more than one in ten were gentlemen commoners, who, in consideration of the payment of double fees and battel bills, were arrayed in silk gowns and velvet caps (with gold tassels in the case of peers' sons), dined at the Fellows' table, and enjoyed considerable immunity as regards lectures. These young gentlemen as a rule dressed gorgeously ; hunted in the two winter terms ; and, in the summer, drove tandem, frequented the Bullingdon and Isis Clubs, and the not very respectable premises of Milky Bill, the dog fancier, where their bull terriers drew badgers, and they shot pigeons. With them naturally consorted the one or two rich men amongst the commoners. At the other end of the scale were the scholars, seldom more than four in number, the college endowments for that class being small, with whom consorted the one or two studious men. The remaining three-fourths were entirely given over to athletics ; and, as regards this important department of education, no accomplished young Aristotelian could have CHAP. II. CONDITION OF THE COLLEGE. 27 joined a more distinguished school. In the year in which Fraser became full Fellow the Oriel boat went to the head of the river, and contained two stroke-oar and No. 5 of the famous University crew which in the following year won the Henley Challenge Cup with seven oars. There were two torpids, both well placed in their respective divisions. The eleven played colleges twice the size of Oriel, and won three matches out of four. Inter-collegiate football matches had not yet been started, but several of the best players in Oxford were also of Oriel. But, above all, the college was the accepted home of the noble science of self-defence in the University. It almost supported a retired prize-fighter, who had been known in the ring as " the Flying Tailor " (a first- rate teacher of boxing, however moderate his sartorial talents might have been), and cordially welcomed any stray pugilist who might be training in the neighbourhood and was in need of a pound or two. There were regular meetings in some of the largest rooms two or three times a week, at which out-college men, of all weights from eight stone upwards, might find suitable matches ; and occasional public gatherings at the Weirs, or Wheat Sheaf, promoted by Oriel men for the benefit of one or other of these professionals. In short, athletics were accepted as the main object of residence at the University, and the other branches of a polite education looked upon as subordinate and inferior. Upon all the pursuits which thus absorbed the energies of their pupils, Provost, Dean, and tutors looked, not only without sympathy, but with scarcely veiled dislike. No sub- scriptions, however small, ever came to boat club or cricket club from any of them ; nor was any one of them ever seen on the river bank at the races, or on Cowley Marsh at a cricket match. Leave to dine in the middle of the day during the races was only granted to the racing crew after 2 8 LIFE OF BISHOP FRASER. PARTI. frequent applications, and at last grudgingly. All the tutors were in orders, and none of them, so far as was known, had ever used their legs except for a mild constitutional, or their arms for anything beyond handling editions of the classics and the fathers, and writing elegant prose or verse in the dead languages. Into a society so disorganized and unsympathetic, the young Ireland scholar and first-class man was plunged at the early age of twenty-one. At the end of his year of probation he was appointed reader of sermon notes, and very soon afterwards college tutor. He came from a small and un- popular college, which had not at that time even a boat on the river. It was not known that he had ever pulled an oar, or played in a cricket match ; as indeed very likely he never had since he left Shrewsbury, having during his under- graduate years been absorbed in the harder and nobler work of securing his own independence, and a position in which he might help his mother instead of being a drag upon her. Had this been known there was manliness and good feeling enough amongst the Oriel athletes to have made his reception a very different one. As it was, the verdict of the majority was at first decidedly unfavourable. The captains of the boat and the eleven, and the best boxers in the college, looking at the fine setting on of his head, the breadth of his shoulders, and the splendid muscular development of loin and limb, shook their heads reproachfully. Some moral delinquency it was felt must be involved in the neglect of such natural gifts. True, he had been/art/? princeps for the Ireland ; but, if he had only used his talents conscientiously, a man of his build might no doubt have brought " the Diamond Sculls " (the blue ribbon of oarsmen of those days) from Henley to Oxford, and still have won that scholarship. You don't want to be facile CHAP. ii. DRESS AT ORIEL. 29 princeps. If your nose is six inches in front at the winning post it is as good as a whole boat's length. Besides, was he not a regular dandy ? This last criticism had a certain amount of foundation in fact. The junior Fellow was beyond all question the best dressed man in college. Not but what Oriel contained more than a sprinkling of dressy men, particularly amongst the gentlemen commoners. But they were of the ornate type of those days, with magnificent plush waistcoats, and trousers of alarming pattern and audacious cut. Fraser was always as neat as if he had just stepped out of a bandbox. He habitually wore a blue frock coat of perfect cut, with velvet collar ; and waistcoat and trousers of light colours not excluding even buff and lavender equally well made. Probably he thought as little of his clothes then as in his later years ; but it was his principle through life to have none but the best things from the best tradesmen, and his instinct to put whatever he had to the very best use it was capable of. Then he had a fine white skin, which flushed like a girl's in answer to any emotion, and roused some suspicion, if not contempt, in the minds of young gentlemen who had a sort of pride in being tanned, by constant exposure to sun and wind, until blushing had become impossible to them. There was a slight reaction in his favour when the hunting men reported that he owned one of the best hacks which stood at Simmonds's, and, whenever the old Berkshire met within reach of Oxford, was in the habit of taking his ride in that direction. On the whole, however, there was a de- cided prejudice against him when he opened his lecture room. Nor did his early lectures produce a favourable impression. He was shy and embarrassed, often blushed when a question was asked, and found great difficulty in coming down to the LIFE OF BISHOP FRASER. PART I. average level of his pupils. An early incident of an unusual kind even in those days undoubtedly did something to remove the prejudice of the majority. In order to get rooms big enough to accommodate his classes comfortably, he had taken a first-floor set on the south-west staircase of the outer quadrangle, generally inhabited by a gentleman com- moner. The presence of a tutor on their staircase was by no means agreeable to these young persons, and one of them resolved to bring this home to the mind of the intruder, and proceeded to carry out his intention in the most ill-bred and offensive manner he could think of. He was in the lecture on Herodotus, the largest which Fraser had ; and, selecting a crowded day, walked into the room amongst the last arrivals, in a silk-lined smoking jacket under his nobleman's gown, and bright coloured slippers on his feet. Thus clothed he sank into a corner of the sofa. There was a curious pause to see how Fraser would take it. His face flushed scarlet ; but, after looking for a moment or two steadily at the intruder, whose eyes were as steadily averted and fixed on his Herodotus, he proceeded with his lecture, quietly ignoring the presence of the noble mountebank, and "jumping" him when it came to his turn to construe. " Why didn't he pitch him out neck and heels ? " "Wouldn't I have done it for him with a will if he had given the hint ! " " I think he got the best of it anyhow," the men commented, as they scattered across the quadrangle after lecture. But, on the whole, the popular judgment finally inclined to the verdict that the studied insolence of the young aristo- crat had been best met by simply ignoring him, and the young tutor rose a distinct peg in the estimation of the college. A much more important step was gained when he was seen on the bank on several critical nights of the boat races. CHAP. ii. TUTOR OF ORIEL. 31 running by the side of the boat and cheering lustily. It was even reported that the club secretary, the most short- sighted man, and most zealous oar, in Oxford, had forthwith sounded him as to taking a seat at number five in the senior torpid, with a view, if found competent, to taking the place of the heaviest man in the racing boat, who was just going into the schools, and couldn't attend properly to his training; and that the overtures, though unsuccessful, had been received in a friendly and sympathetic spirit. Next term came a rumour that in the long vacation he had clubbed horses with a friend and driven tandem round North Wales ; a feat regarded with distinct respect, both by sporting men and athletes. But it was not till he had been in harness for another term or two that the early prejudice disappeared, and it was on this wise. After large boating or cricketing suppers, when the usual songs had been sung and toasts given, it was often the habit of the more strenuous revellers to adjourn to the grass-plot in the back quadrangle, there to finish their symposia with leap-frog, jumping, or whatever high-jinks might be suggested at the moment. Upon this grass-plot the windows of the Provost's library looked out, and it was well known that he entertained an unreasonable objection to these healthy, though perhaps somewhat untimely, educational exercises. Long experience had established that when the red curtains were suddenly- drawn back and a white head appeared at the window, it was time to scatter as fast as possible, because even though it might be too dark for the Provost to recognize any one himself, the night porter might now be looked for at any moment, to take down names. Now amongst the Oriel athletes at this time was a Scotchman, a scholar of the college, James Mackie by name (afterwards M.P. for Kirk- cudbrightshire), a man of great strength and stature. He 3 2 LIFE OF BISHOP FRASER. PART i. had brought with him from Rugby the name of " the Bear," from the closeness of his hug in wrestling, in which it was believed he had never been worsted. He was one of the party at a particularly festive supper, to celebrate the bring- ing home of the London and Henley challenge cups to Oriel, which had adjourned to the grass-plot, when the usual warning signal was seen at the Provost's window. Mackie made off at once for his rooms, and, the night being dark, at the entrance of the passage between the two quadrangles, ran right up against some one whom he took for the under porter. Which of the two grappled the other was never accurately known, but the collision resulted in a spirited wrestling bout between them; and "the Bear" admitted that it was all he could do to get rid of his opponent, who after all was only left on hand and knee, no " fair fall " having been scored on either side. But the tussle had lasted long enough for Mackie to have recognized his adversary, and no doubt the recognition had been mutual : and grave were the fears of those in the secret for some days whether an untimely end might not be put to the career of the scholar, and so a vacancy hard to fill be created at number four in the college boat. But nothing happened : and so Fraser who had been peaceably on his way to the library for a book got the credit, not only of having held his own with the best wrestler in college, but of having kept the whole affair quietly to himself, knowing that the collision was an accident. From that time he was spoken of as " Jemmy," and attained to the equivalent of " the most favoured nation clause" in the undergraduates' tutorial code. As tutor, however, he made no special mark in the college, never having attained anything approaching to the influence with his pupils, or the success in the schools, of CHAP. ii. ORIEL COMMON ROOM. 33 such educators as Michell or Jowett, Goldwin Smith or Stanley. It is difficult to account for this except on the ground of the great shyness which certainly embarrassed his relations with the men who attended his college lectures, and probably influenced those more intimate ones with his own pupils. One of these, Mr. Park Dickens, a first-class man in 1846, takes this view, saying that in his own case he got more good from Fraser in his last talk with him, when he was going out of college, a few months before his final examina- tion, than in all their previous intercourse ; and that what he did get then in the shape of advice as to his reading was of great value. Of his career in the common room the testimony of such of his colleagues as still survive bears out the general impres- sion, that it gave little promise of the very fruitful and re- markable character which he developed aftenvards. In the elections which followed his own, Arthur Clough, and G. Buckle (now prebendary of Wells and rector of Weston- super-Mare), and Matthew Arnold were successful, and brought quite new elements into the life of the common room. The two former became his colleagues as college tutors, and remained so during the rest of his residence in college. For the last three years, from January, 1844, he was also sub-dean and librarian. " Of course we were much together in the way of busi- ness," writes Mr. Buckle, " making out the lecture list and discussing the qualities and doings of our pupils. But we never got very close mentally in those days my closer intimacy with him came at a later date. He did not then seem to care for the theological and philosophical topics which engrossed the rest of us. We regarded him as the D 34 LIFE OF BISHOP FRASER. PART i. finished scholar and cheery companion, and hardly thought of him in any other light. Perhaps, too, he was a little separated from us by being more acceptable to the elder set, with whom we juniors in those days felt a little out of har- mony. The Provost paid him the very unusual compliment of asking him to join a Club of Heads of Houses, and other great dons, who dined together once a week. Eraser's social qualities were always high." And again, referring to the re- markable mixture of men in the Oriel common room in those years, " I remember no single instance of a clash between them. We all got on excellently together, but I think our intercourse with Fraser never went much below the surface." " Fraser rather represented the high-and-dry Church in com- mon room," writes M. Arnold, "with an admixture of the world so far at least as pleasure in riding and sport may be called worldly ; of the ascetic and speculative side, nothing." " My recollection of him," writes Dr. Chase, now Princi- pal of St. Mary's Hall, " is of a genial companion ; and I felt, when he left, that the corner stone was taken out of the Oriel common room, and no substitute was ever found." I will add one other witness, an old friend and contem- porary, not an Oriel man, as to these years of his residence at Oxford : "We all used to have the greatest pleasure in his joyous society," writes T. Lonsdale, son of the late Bishop of Lichfield, " and well can those who are left re- member his bright face and hearty manner his good temper and loveable disposition. One of his oldest friends used to say that an utter want of affectation was his distinguishing characteristic ; another, that it was ' loveableness ; ' another, CHAP. ii. SUB-DEAN OF ORIEL. 35 ' transparent sincerity.' He was indeed ' pellucidior vitro.' It struck me that all he did was done with wonderful ease, as if it all came to him by instinct rather than effort, while doing it he always seemed so happy, and ready to turn to other things." As may readily be supposed, the family at Bilston were not a little proud of the success of their young relative, and by no means averse to the reflected credit which his acade- mical honours shed on the home circle, in their quiet little country town and neighbourhood. Mr. Willim, the solicitor, and now the head of the family, was in the habit of com- municating these things to the local paper, not, it must be confessed, without some connivance on the part of his sister. His nephew, who always winced under these well- meant eulogia, was at last roused to open remonstrance by an unusually grandiloquent paragraph on his becoming censor of Oriel. 1844. To Mrs. Fraser.Feb. iot/1, 1844. "What a nuisance that Uncle John has a mania for spreading that puff far and wide ! To complete the thing he should send it to the Oxford Herald and the Times ! I think that would drive me mad ' intirely ! ' What satisfaction there can be to anybody's feel- ings to read a puffing paragraph written by themselves, or one of themselves, or of themselves, I cannot for the life of me imagine but please don't send my letters, this or the former one, on to Bilston, as I am sure my uncle would be hurt at it, and that is the last thing that I should desire. I shall however write a quieter letter to him myself, lest he should be tempted to send a copy of the same to the Oxford paper. I do admire that youthful ' Jehu ' of a brother of D 2 36 LIFE OF BISHOP FRASER. PART :. mine, risking his precious neck and spending his precious ' tin ' with such a harum-scarum companion in a buggy ! It would do him more good, and (I should think) cost him less money, to take a good ride. Think of the difference in the pikes ! My old friend Sale is coming up to take his M.A. degree next week, but he is so very connubial that he won't stay a single day amongst us, but returns to town, where he is taking a fortnight's holiday, the same night. I am very angry at this way of treating old friends, whether persons or places. I made my debut in my new college office yes- terday in presenting a member of my college to the Vice- Chancellor and Proctor for his degree. You may perhaps have a chance of witnessing my performance of my duty in the summer. At present a verbal description of the process would, I fear, be unintelligible to you ; nor do I know, as the whole is transacted in Latin, that a sight of it will make it much clearer." Probably, however, the best picture of his life during these years may be gathered from one of his long journal letters to his mother, which he was in the habit of writing regularly whenever absent from her. "April ijt/t, 1844. "ORIEL COLLEGE, OXFORD. " MY DEAREST MOTHER, I came back from town last night to be in readiness for a busy day. In my capacity of Sub-Dean, I have already officiated in the presentation of three members of this college for their M.A. degree : and at one o'clock I am to partake of a grand luncheon given by the Proctor Elect of this college, who enters upon the duties of his office on this, the first day of term, and whom, after his lunch, all the resident members of the college will CHAP. ii. VACATION RAMBLES. 37 accompany in formal procession to the Convocation House, there to see him sworn in and admitted to his office by the Vice-Chancellor, and the choice of the college approved and confirmed by the voice of Convocation. I shall then have a couple of idle days before the business of term recommences. " I really had not time while in town to acknowledge the receipt of the interesting packet containing dear Edward's last letter, which by this time ought to have found its way into every hand that is privileged or entitled to receive it, and perhaps has even come back to you again. I will make at present no further comment upon it than merely to remark that your anticipations of the pleasure with which I should peruse it were more than realised. And now, I suppose, you will expect an account of my recent proceed- ings which, for the sake of clearness and convenience, I had better throw into the shape of a diary. Monday, April ^th. " Started from Oxford a quarter before eight, and had a pleasant ride to London, arriving there at half-past eleven. Made the best of my way from Paddington to Blackwall Railway, and thence to the Bruns- wick Wharf, where I found a steamer in readiness to convey me to Gravesend, at which place 1^ arrived about half-past three. Forthwith mounted a 'bus, and was set down at Alex's room in Brompton Barracks at a quarter before five. The hero was out himself, having, as I subsequently found, ia company with five others of his messmates, gone up the river about fifteen miles, with some ladies, to whom these gallant sons of Mars gave a fete champetre on the green and sunny banks of the Medway. He did not get back till nearly eight o'clock. I consoled myself during his absence, by strolling out on to " The Lines," where I was just in time 38 LIFE OF BISHOP FRASER. PART i. to see the fag-end of a review of about 2,500 Infantry, who had been manoeuvring there ever since two o'clock. It was a spectacle with which I was much gratified, as I do not think I had ever seen so many troops massed together before. I also lionised the town and neighbourhood of Chatham. Upon Alex's return, I dined with him and some half-dozen of his comrades, who were also too late for mess, in what they call " the ante-room " a kind of second edition, or rechauffe or rifacimento (to sport my French and Italian) of the mess dinner, and spent a very agreeable evening. I was disappointed in Alex's rooms but, from his description of them, I had compared them in my imagi- nation with a set of college apartments, instead of which there is only one room, his bed being merely separated by a screen from the rest of the apartment, and his washing- stand, dressing-table, &c., &c., standing out in bold relief, and scorning concealment. However, the room is large and airy and I could make myself very comfortable there I only say I had expected to find a suite of rooms, and not a single solitary apartment. " On Tuesday Alexander got leave of absence for the day, and we started for the Cathedral, where we attended the service, and it is an interesting edifice, especially the old Norman part. It is considerably spoilt, however, by some modern additions of a tower and windows. You know our Provost is ex-officio a prebendary of Rochester. The service there is not to be compared with the style of that at Exeter the minor canon reads, instead of chanting which mars the effect. 'After lionising the Cathedral, I drew Alexander on to Cobham Hall and park, the magnificent old baronial seat of the Earl of Darnley, of the very existence of which Master Alexander was before ignorant. This was about five CHAP. ii. VACATION RAMBLES. 39 miles from Chatham : so that, as we walked there and back and the day was very hot, you may suppose we had sufficient exercise. We were however both rewarded for our exertions ; though we could not see the interior of the house, which is only shown on a Friday, and in which, I understand, there are some very fine pictures. We saw a very curious antique state carriage, about the date of James, or Elizabeth. Alexander stated his intention of lionising the interior on some future occasion. This day we dined at mess, where certainly those young fellows do live luxuriously : and it is no wonder they get dissatisfied with homely fare and family dinners. As I had never dined at mess before, I was very much gratified and interested with the spectacle it presents. I left Chatham on the Wednesday morning at twelve o'clock both finding and leaving Alexander in apparently the best health, spirits, and enjoyment, and I hope working hard. He seems anxious to leave as soon as possible and indeed I should think the monotony of the place must get somewhat wearisome. Of course he has written to you before this about the mistake we all made in reading Plying Lass for Flying Sap. But although he said he took particular pains to write the word plainly, I assured him, that to our un- scientific heads and eyes, who did not know the technical existence of the latter term, Flying Lass was the obvious reading of the writing that he thought was so plain as to preclude the possibility of mistake. I returned to town by the same route by which I had come down and got to 22, Craven Street, Strand (where I found myself extremely comfortable) by four o'clock and after a few moments' attention to my ' toilette ' sallied forth to see what was to be seen and, as my first sight, found myself looking in upon the American dwarf, little Tom Thumb, whose diminutive- ness surpasses my powers of description, and who is certainly 4 o LIFE OF BISHOP FRASER. PART i. the most ridiculously tiny animal I ever saw or conceived. While here, one of the Ojibbeway Indians came in from an adjoining Exhibition-room in the Egyptian Hall, and I satisfied my curiosity on that score by giving him a good look over, without thinking it necessary afterwards to pay another shilling to see the whole ' quintette.' I forget how I spent the rest of the evening : but I think it was this day that I went to the Adelaide Gallery, where I could see nothing in- teresting except a pair of electrical eels. I did not however try the effects of a shock. " On Thursday I rambled through the National Gallery (my favourite place of resort) and the British Museum ; made sundry calls on friends in the Temple (old Norman among the number) and Lincoln's Inn, and in the evening went to the opera, where I was much pleased. We had Don Pasquale, a capital opera buffa, in which I heard Grisi, Lablache, Fornasari, and Corelli. Then the last scene of the Cenerentola, where I heard the new/n'/// donna, Mdlle. Favanti, only her second appearance in England, of which country she is a native, her true name being Miss Edwards. She is a very fine woman of about twenty-eight, and has a mezzo-contralto voice of great power, but I thought a little deficient in sweetness. Then came the new fashionable dance, ' The Polka,' danced for the first time in this country by Carlotta Grisi and M. Perrot, a pas de deux between Mdlle. Louise and M. Montassa, to conclude with the ballet La Esmeralda, the scenery of which was magnificent, but I don't care a rush for the dancing. I did not think very much of the polka, and I don't think it possible that, as a whole, it can be introduced in private parties, except as a pas de deux, though there is a portion of it, a kind of modification of the waltz, produced by the gentleman and the lady alter- CHAP. ii. VACATION RAMBLES. 41 nately changing sides, which may be practicable as a general dance. " On Friday, I went with a friend to Hampton Court, but found to our disgust that we could not see the interior, as that was the only day in the week on which it is not shown, so I missed the cartoons, though I shall certainly go again. I was very much pleased with the exterior and the gardens. We walked back, through Bushey Park and Twickenham, to Richmond a beautiful walk indeed and thence returned to town by 'bus. I should have preferred a steam down the river, but there was no boat till half-past five, and I was engaged to dine with a friend who is curate of Trinity Church, Marylebone, at that hour, where I spent a very pleasant evening in the society of some old school and college friends. " Saturday. Spent the whole of this morning most un- satisfactorily in hunting after Mrs. Nicholls, who seems fond of changing the place of her abode. After having found out, with some difficulty and much weary seeking, 2, Radnor Place, Gloucester Square, I found she had left that for 34, Sussex Gardens. Thither I repaired accordingly, and then found that she had left for Cheltenham about a fortnight ago, and would not return till May, so I had all my journey- ings for nothing. The afternoon I spent in rambling about to the park, some of the clubs, a sale of pictures at Christie and Manson's, &c., &c. In the evening I went to the Haymarket, where I was much amused ; in fact, you always get more to make you laugh there than at any other theatre in London, and I never was more electrified in my life than by witnessing the gymnastic performances and postures of a certain Mr. Risley and his son ' le petit Mercure? 42 LIFE OF BISHOP FRASER. PART i. " Sunday. Breakfasted at nine with Norman, went with him to the Temple Church ; then wandered round the Temple Gardens to St. James's Park, till it was time for afternoon service, which I attended at Whitehall Chapel- Royal, and afterwards dined and spent the evening at Mr. Sale's in Surrey Street. " Monday. Breakfasted with an old friend near Berkeley Square ; went with him to hear the Coldstream band play in St. James's Palace courtyard, which they do every morn- ing from half-past ten to eleven : a magnificent performance. Then proceeded with another friend and fellow collegian to the Dulwich picture gallery, with which, as well as the ride and walk down, I was delighted. The Murillos and a Guido there are splendid ; the pictures number twice as many as in the National Gallery, amounting to about 350. The evening I passed at the Polytechnic Institution, which contained some novelties. " Tuesday. Went again to hear the Coldstream band, and made one or two calls. Dined at three o'clock and left town by the five o'clock train, just as the Queen came up from Windsor to hold her drawing-room to-morrow. I saw her cortege with its escort pass through the park, and had I been ten minutes earlier I should have seen her arrive by her special train at the Paddington Station. I should have liked to have stayed till Thursday, to have seen the people go to the drawing-room. There is another on the 25th, to which Alec talks of coming up, as it is a far grander spectacle than a levee. I think I managed pretty well, to see every, thing I did and pay all my expenses, travelling included, for the nine days for 4!. i$s. od. I got enough for my money, at any rate. But I must conclude, for it is time to CHAP. ii. VACATION RAMBLES. 43 get ready for luncheon. If you think it would interest them send this on to Bilston, for it is a bore to repeat all these particulars. I noticed in the park, I think, that the ladies' habits seemed made single-breasted, but with broad flaps thrown back, and three rows of buttons, and some wore a kind of crimson velvet or silk plush waistcoat beneath ; but I could not notice very accurately. Hoping this will find both you and Bruce quite well, " I remain, my dear mother, " Very affectionately, " JAMES FRASER. " As this will probably meet Uncle John's eye let me tell him that he owes me 12^., as his share of the subscription to the Oxford Herald for the current year. They have raised the price by 4*. By the by I had nearly forgotten one thing that bill that Edward sent became payable on the 1 3th inst. I wish you would inquire at your bank whether it has been cashed, and let me know. As I do not want the money myself now, you can use it if you require it, and pay me again in the long vacation, and I will ask you to pay my subscription of two guineas to the hospital, which was due at Lady Day. I forget the exact amount of the bill, but it was rather more than 26!., I think." 1845. To his Mother. Oct. igf/i, 1845. "I am happy to say that I am relieved from the duties of the College Treasurership, which, together with its salary of ioo/. a meagre compensation in my opinion for its anxieties I was afraid would have devolved on my shoulders. One of the senior Fellows has come up into residence to take it, which staves off the evil day from me for the next three 44 LIFE OF BISHOP FRASER. PART i. years. These late unfortunate secessions to the Church of Rome events never to be sufficiently deplored by all well- wishers to the English Church have placed me high on the Fellows' list. I now stand ninth, having risen halfway up the ladder (of eighteen rounds) since my election in 1840. When a man of Mr. Newman's surpassing intellect, and unquestioned holiness, self-denial and piety in which respects I have never yet seen any man worthy to be put in comparison with him (except perhaps Dr. Pusey) when a man whose very presence even his silent presence casts a mysterious influence for good on all around him, 1 feels what he deems an imperative call to leave that Church in which he was baptised, and of which he has been a minister, I think that those who feel most satisfied and confident of their own position may well suspect that there are some serious deficiencies in a system in which the aspirations of such a spirit as his could meet with no corresponding voice, and find no sympathetic aid. I confess I cannot myself understand his feelings, or comprehend the cogency of the motives which have actuated him. I find in my own case very few things that I should wish altered in the liturgy or teaching of our Church though many difficulties in the practical working of her system arising from her connection with the State. But still I feel that one so far below Mr 1 His veneration for Cardinal Newman never faltered In his Charge for 1876, when he was insisting on good reading to the clergy of his diocese, he says, " It is true that it is not every one who can read as J. H. Newman used to read the Scriptures in his Church of St. Mary's in Oxford, when every word, uttered in simplest fashion, but pregnant with scholarly feeling, fell like music on the listener's ear, and touched the heart with a strange sense of spiritual power. I am think- ing of forty years ago, but I remember the effect as distinctly as if I heard the voice yesterday. It is not every one that can achieve this ; but every one can say the prayers and read the lessons as if he felt them, and as if he wished his hearers should feel them too. There is no part of our ministry which it is more worth while to do as well as it can possibly be done." CHAP. II. DR. NEWMAN'S SECESSION. 45 Newman in all those spiritual graces and intellectual gifts, as I too deeply feel myself to be, is quite incompetent to pass judgment on his act. His departure from among us is much felt even by those who differed from his views where his urbanity and manners, no less than his exalted intellect and eminent piety, had much endeared him. There may be a few who are foolish, or shortsighted, or malicious enough, to rejoice at it, but I am happy to say they are but few. The general feeling is one of deep regret, not unaccompanied by anxious queries, ' What is to become of the Church of England ? ' But I have taken up too much of your time with this painful subject, which the business of the last week has brought so vividly to our minds. To change the subject. Has Jones found me out some hay and straw yet ? Remember the price of the former was not to exceed 4/. 105-., nor of the latter 2/. los. a ton. Where is little Tom stabled ? as I suppose we had nothing ready for his reception. I shall be obliged to have my mare clipped, as her coat is very rough and long. In other respects she looks and is very well. In brewing I should think that the addition of another bushel of malt to the same quantity of water, as 'compared with the proportions given by Captain Thompson, would give a very good beer at about 6d. or ^d. a gallon. See that the casks and premises are all properly cleaned, which will require one day's preparation, and had better be done by the brewer who knows the various con- trivances. His name is Ward. You will brew, I take it, about half a hogshead, and will put it into two twenty-five gallon casks. I hope you have found out another laundress. The first one's performances are execrable. I am in the full misery of one of her half-starched shirt collars at this moment." 4 6 LIFE OF BISHOP FRASER. PART i. Fraser, as we have already noted, was fond of horses, and an excellent rider; and one of his first investments on gaining his Fellowship, and so becoming at ease in his finances, was a good hack, as noted by the Gentlemen Commoners. Four other of the junior Fellows soon fol- lowed his example, and the Oriel cavalcade became the most numerous in Oxford, much, one may imagine, to the astonishment, and not altogether to the liking, of the Provost and senior Fellows ; one of whom, given to philo- sophising, declared that "he could see in each rider the character of each man." Undoubtedly the equestrian habits of the staff acted to some extent as an encouragement to the hunting men, the idlest set in college ; although, with the exception of Fraser, none of the Fellows planned their rides with any reference to the hunting calendar. But he was a keen sportsman, and made no secret of the pleasure it gave him to come across the hounds in the afternoon, after his college work was done, and in the Christmas vacation he hunted regularly. 1846. It is thoroughly characteristic of the man, that, when he had made up his mind to take orders, he resolved to abandon his favourite sport once for all, but, before doing so, to give himself a short season in "the shire of the shires." Accordingly, immediately after Christmas day, 1846, when he was already a deacon of one week's stand- ing, he went down to the Melton country with his two horses, and established himself in the sporting hotel at Atherstone. Thence he wrote to his brother Bruce : " I intend to keep a bit of a journal for your edification." From this a few short extracts may here be given : CHAP. II. ADIEU TO HUNTING. 47 Monday, Dec. igth. "Meet Overseal, near Ashby-de-la- Zouch thirteen miles to covert. I started at nine A. im- precisely, on the mare, after a good breakfast on a slice of broiled ham and poached eggs. The hounds overtook me about half way in their van, looking very nice. I was up however in lots of time at the covert side. We soon found in a large wood, name unknown, and had a fair hunting run, with however too many checks and too cold a scent, for nearly three hours, and finally gave up about three miles north-west of Ashby. We trotted back through the old town, the scene, as you remember, of Ivanhoe (I got a peep of the ruins of the castle en passant], and kept moving on in a homeward direction till we came to an ozier-bed two miles south-east of Ashby name also unknown and there threw the hounds in. We had not to wait five minutes before we unkennelled a fox, who went away at a slapping pace for fifty minutca without a check, very fast, all the way over a glorious country. We then came to a check, and though we picked up the scent again three or four times could not get on terms with reynard again, and it being past four and nearly dusk, we were obliged to call the hounds off without blood, but after as pretty a gallop as any man could wish to see. This was at Clifton Camville, twelve miles from home, so the mare did a good day's work. She car- ried me admirably, wonderfully improved since last year takes so much more length to her jumps. Almost every fence had a ditch one side or the other, but she never made a single mistake, and the little timber we had she did in good style. I was pleased, too, to find that she was fast enough for what all who were out allowed to be a fast thing, even in Leicestershire, and such was my maiden day in this prince of hunting countries. Riding home I got into con- versation with one of the whips (they have three out as well 4 8 LIFE OF BISHOP FRASER. PART i. as a huntsman) who has offered to lionise me over the kennel. They have upwards of sixty couple of hounds and forty horses. They sent off eight old ones this morning to Birmingham to be sold, I suppose on Thursday, at the repository. They passed under my window as I was shaving. I shall ride the old horse on Wednesday at Ullesthorpe, and the mare will do well again for Friday at York Wood. The country was very heavy, especially the ploughs, and it was a stiffish white frost when I started. We found our second fox in the rain, which wonderfully improved the scent. I came home pleased with the country, the hounds, the huntsmen, the master, my mare, and myself, and so good-night. Wednesday. " Ullesthorpe, a beautiful meet, upwards of a hundred. Found at once in front of the Hall, but chopped him in covert. There was however a second fox ' at home,' though the covert was not two acres, who led us off at a rattling pace for a quarter of an hour, when we came across the railroad. There we had a check of twenty minutes, and though we found the scent again Charley was too far ahead of us, and we were obliged to give him up. We then trotted away for a fresh find to Churchover, passing through Lutterworth, famous in the annals of the English Reforma- tion as having been the cure of John Wicliffe, but now presenting nothing remarkable. Here we found in three minutes, and went away in splendid style, and had a capital hunting run over a fine grass country for an hour, when we came to a long check, and as I found I had lost a front shoe (though I had the old fellow shod only the day before) and was twenty miles from home, and raining hard, I thought it advisable to turn my horse's nose in that direction. And a miserable time we had of it, seven miles before we could CHAP. II. ADIEU TO HUNTING. 49 get a smith, and pelting rain all the way ; neither horse nor man however any the worse. The old horse carried me nobly. I flatter myself there were not many who were nearer the hounds, and at one fence with a yawning ditch on the off-side, at which the leading man got a tremendous fall, I, being second, got over in gallant style ; but none of the field ventured to follow our example. In fact, I am as well mounted as a man could wish to be, and don't know which of my horses I prefer. It is however a great draw- back to the comfort of riding the ' old-un ' that he is such a puller. He got me into one or two difficulties by coming so quick on the man who was going before. As soon as he sees a fence he goes at it at such a. pace, and with such resolution, that I'll defy you to stop him, and I was often obliged to ask men whom I found riding at my side to let me go at the fence before them on this account. Friday. . . . " We met this morning at York Wood, two miles from Coleshill and seven from Birmingham. A large show of ' Brummagem Buttons,' but we shook them off by degrees, and had an excellent, though not very fast, hunting run of four hours, through a very heavy country. We kept running till five o'clock, when darkness compelled us to call off the hounds without blood, and I found myself with four- teen miles to ride home. It was one of the staunchest foxes I ever followed, as you may suppose from the time we were hunting him. The mare carried me gallantly, giving me however one fall, in which I sustained no damage beyond a dirty coat, though on looking up before rising I found myself unpleasantly situated, right under her belly If you want to see a top-sawyer, you should see Mr. New- degate, one of the members for Warwickshire, ride. He is a young man, about twenty-four, splendidly mounted, always 50 LIFE OF BISHOP FRASER. PART i. with two horses out, and he does go. I consider it no little credit to myself and my horse to be able to follow in his wake. Being obliged, from my ignorance of the country, to take some one as a leader, I always choose him, and no man can show you a better line." 1847- He returned from Atherstone in the second week of January, 1847, and from that day never rode to hounds. In the previous autumn he had already bidden adieu to another favourite vacation amusement, which may be dis- missed with a short extract from a letter to his old friend and schoolfellow, Sale : Bewdley, August yth, 1846. " I am going to take a tan- dem drive with an old Shrewsbury man, Reginald Turner, of Balliol, now rector of Churchill in this country, all round that part of the country where I suppose you will one day become a resident, viz. Holt, Witley, and the Abberley Hills. The view from the latter, I am told, is very fine. My two horses make a capital team, and as this is the last vacation in which I shall ever indulge again in the amuse- ment I avail myself readily of the opportunity." Within a week of his last day with the hounds the young deacon was at work in Oxford, and soon began to preach weekly at some church in the city, in addition to his ordinary college work. The two horses went back to Bewdley, where his younger brother, Bruce, moved no doubt by the Ather- stone letters, as the month slipped away, became unwilling to allow the mare and the " old-un " to eat their heads off, and pine for the music of horn and hound. His suggestions on this subject drew from James the following : CHAP. II. ORDINATION. 51 Oriel, January 3O//&, 1 847. f ' DEAREST BRUCE, You are perfectly welcome to take the mare to Shrawley, and I dare say if you have a woodland run she will carry you pretty fairly. But it is impossible she can be in condition to live through a fast thing. Take her, but ride her judiciously. If she shows any symptoms of distress, leave off and bring her home, for nothing is so permanently injurious to man or horse as pressure beyond their strength." To his Mother. Feb. 4^/1, 1847. "With regard to what I said in my last about the subscription for the Irish and Scotch, I wish to add a word to Bruce. If he doesn't feel himself rich enough to give money, he can do something by giving a little of his trouble and time, and could go from house to house with a list for the purpose of collecting sub- scriptions. He would thus have the satisfaction of as effectually promoting the cause as if he could afford ever so princely a donation. Ask him to think this over." There is a smack of the future Bishop of Manchester, the first to be met with, in this suggestion to brother Bruce. An extract or two from his letters bearing on his ordina- tion may fitly close this chapter. He was ordained deacon on the Saturday before Christmas Day, 1846, and priest on Trinity Sunday, 1847 : To his Mother. Oriel, December io///, 1846. "We are just now in the middle of Collections, having begun on Friday to end on Tuesday. At ten A.M. on Thursday morning I have to present myself with the other candi- dates for ordination at the Bishop's Palace, which is at the village of Cuddesden, six miles from here. The ordination itself I suppose will take place as usual, in the cathedral on this day week. And now that the time is so E 2 52 LIFE OF BISHOP FRASER. PART I. closely drawing on, .one's mind cannot but be filled with serious thoughts of one's own weakness and insufficiency, when compared with the field of labour in which one's lot is to be cast. Great need indeed have I of every aid to enable me to walk worthy of the vocation wherewith I shall be called. Do not forget me, my dearest mother, in your prayers ; indeed I know you will not, and the thought of your intercession on my behalf, added to my own imperfect petitions, has long been a comfort to my mind." To his Aunt Lucy. "As the hour approaches for the actual investiture of that sacred function, one becomes more and more sensible of one's own utter helplessness and in- sufficiency, unless assisted by God's grace to walk worthy of so high a calling. I purpose leaving this for Bilston on Tuesday, the 22nd. . . Would it be convenient to send the pony-carriage to meet me at Birmingham ? If so, let it be at the Hen and Chickens by five o'clock. The coach gets in about six. Don't hesitate to say no, if it is the least in- convenient, as I can pocket my invincible dislike to those omnibuses. If you do send the pony-carriage, put in my plaid, as I dare say I shall find it acceptable." To his Uncle. Jan., 1847. "I underwent the exami- nation with not a little nervousness on more accounts than one ; but was unexpectedly rewarded at its close by the Bishop's telling me he had been much gratified by my papers, and paying me the compliment of appointing me to read the gospel in the ordination service." To his Mother. " I wish you and Aunt Lucy would give me your candid opinion about my sermons, at least those that you have read, and with reference to the following points : Do you think the language plain and intelligible to ordinary CHAP. ii. ORDINATION AS PRIEST. 53 minds, as well as sufficiently definite and practical in their teaching? and how far do you think them adapted to awaken a hearer, and lead him to apply what is said to him- self ? I should really feel it a great kindness to have your mature and unbiassed judgment on these points. A young writer is very apt to deceive himself, and I want my sermons to be useful to others, and not a display of any learning or eloquence of my own." He lost no time in qualifying himself for priest's orders. To his Mother, Whit- Sunday ', 1847. "lam very busy, as I have to prepare for the Bishop's examination on Thursday next, in addition to my usual amount of college work. For, as I told you I probably should do, I have made up my mind to be a candidate for priest's orders on Trinity Sunday. I have no doubt I shall have the benefit of your thoughts and prayers while endeavouring to approve myself to the Bishop worthy to be admitted into the sacred order of priests, that God may enable me to discharge aright its weighty responsibilities to the increase of His glory and the benefit of His Church." And then, speaking of the college living of Cholderton, just vacant by the resignation of Mr. Thos. Mozley (Cardinal Newman's brother-in-law, author of the Memoirs), " The Cholderton case is still unsettled, as Church's answer has not yet been received. The delay is odd ; but I suppose he was wander- ing about, and so the letter had to follow him. But I suppose after all I shall be rector there, and the more I think the subject over the more I think I should promote my own happiness (and I flatter myself, yours also, if you consent to come and keep house with me) by being so. I wrote to Bruce with your letter, among other things recom- mending him to discontinue pastry, and everything that 54 LIFE OF BISHOP FRASER. PART i. consumes flour, except bread. With wheat at 15^. a bushel we should have all economy in its consumption. We have forbidden pastry in the college, and many others have done the same thing. By the by, I was told the other day that as a substitute for potatoes, rice and peas done together were much superior to either vegetable alone. The receipt was from the Bishop of Oxford, who had seen it used at the Queen's table. Try it." To his Mother. Oriel College, Trinity Monday, 1847. " I have just read your interesting budget (and forwarded it), for which however I had to pay 2d. more. When you run weight so very fine, why not give the revenue the benefit of the doubt? Perhaps you think that you do this the more effectually by getting an extra penny out of the re- cipient of the letter, but you should remember that this in some measure diminishes the feeling of satisfaction with which it is received. ... I was ordained yesterday priest (with twenty-two others) by the Bishop of Oxford, after three previous days of examination and exhortation from the Bishop, at his palace at Cuddesdon. I cannot but consider it to be a great privilege to be ordained by such a Bishop. So much solemnity and holy feeling does he impart to every, even the slightest, detail of the whole ceremony, that it is impossible for even the lightest-hearted (and I feel that my heart is sadly too light and frivolous) to be otherwise than deeply impressed with the business in which he is engaged. I have now a full commission to preach God's Word, to dispense His Sacraments, and to declare His pardon. May He grant me grace to do them all faithfully, and to His glory ! I cannot but feel and know how weak and imperfect the instrument ; but it is a comfort to be assured that our sufficiency is not of ourselves." CHAPTER III. "When thou dost purpose ought (within thy power) Be sure thou doe it, though it be but small. Constancy knits our bones, and makes us stoure, When wanton pleasure beckons us to thrawle. Who breaks his own bond forfeiteth himself, What nature made a ship he makes a shelf. " HERBERT, The Church Porch. CHOLDERTON. I. THE NEW CHURCH. 1847 1849. l8 47 . THE little living of Cholderton is one of the poorest in the gift of Oriel It passed all down the list of fellows in June, 1847, but no man was willing to take it at the cost of his fellowship. A College meeting was thereupon called, at which it was decided, that Cholderton should be " tenable with a fellowship." Even in this form it was declined by all the senior fellows, and came to Eraser, who accepted it. He was inducted early in July, and then, by arrangement with the outgoing incumbent, Mr. Mozley, took two months holiday on the Continent before going into residence. His predecessor, who had, from an occasional contributor, become one of the principal writers on the staff of the Times, had found the two positions incompatible, unless his parish work was to be scamped, and so was migrating to London. He and his wife were building a new church, at Cholderton, to replace the one in use, which had fallen into hopeless decay, and had no architectural or antiquarian interest to $6 LIFE OF BISHOP FRASER. PART i. make it worth preserving. In the short visit which Fraser paid them before starting for his holiday, he seems to have won their entire confidence, and a friendship at once sprung up between them, which was only to end with the life of the younger man. The zeal and insight with which he entered into all their plans as to the new church, and took up the threads of the parish work of all kinds, hastened the transition from acquaintanceship to friendship. Of this continental tour the entry in his small pocket- book, " Vita mece (mihi non aliis) memorabilia" runs : "July 14 September 17. Tour on the continent with Marsh and Powles. Starting from Ramsgate : Ostend, Cologne, Coblenz, Frankfort, Heidelberg, Baden, Strasburg, Freiburg, Schaffhausen, Zurich, Luzern, the Oberland, Interlaken, Thun, Vevay, Berne, Geneva, Mont Blanc, the Simplon, Domo d'Ossola, L. Maggiore, Lugano and Como, Milan, Venice, Padua, Trent, the Stelvio, Finstermunz, Innspruck, Munich, Augsburg, Nuremberg, Wurtzburg, the Mayne, Frankfort, down the Rhine, home. Expenses, 43 /. 155. 6 CHAP. in. THE PAINTED WINDOWS. 73 On Side Compartment. On Side Compartment. JOANNES WILLIM FRASER ROBERTUS BRUCE FRASER Apud Indos Orientates jam Biennio legis studenti vix biennium militans, exacto, Immatura morte peremptus Immortalitatem cum vita com- est. mutav.t, die Septembris, A.D. 1840, aeL 20. 3tio die Novembris, A.D. 1847, zt - 20 - IN CENTRAL COMPARTMENT.' Ambo deflendi dederant si fata tu?ri Armis hie patriam noverat, ille toga. Amho tirones, totidemque jequaliter annos, Officio cecidit junctus uterque suo. Jamque jacent (fas sit sperare) ubi nulla manebunt Causave consulto, bellave agenda duci. I add the general design : DESIGN FOR CHURCH WINDOWS. 4 3 21 THOMAS JAMES PAUL LUKE and and and and MATTHIAS. BARTHOLOMEW. BARNABAS. JOHN. Four North side 2-light windows, with figures of Evangelists and Apostles. 1-3 ^'~ ^ =r 3 c.=r p* C. n n ; - = ? 3 r.n ~ , -* I 1. 3 S ? IK ^ 3 3 ?. $ r- r 12 3 4 MATTHEW ANDREW PHILIP SIMON and and and and MARK. PETER. JAMES THE LESS. JUDE. Four South side 2-light windows, with figures of Evangelists and Apostles. ' The epitaph in the text was copied from Eraser's original manuscript. The present incumbent sends the following as the f jrm of the memorial verses as they now stand in the Church : Par fratrum concors puros queis Integra m ^res Fingebat pietas ingenuusque pudor. Ambo tirones, totidemque aequaliter annos, Officio cecidit functus uterque suo. Otia jam norunt aeterna. ubi nulla manebunt Causave consulto, bellave agenda duci. 74 LIFE OF BISHOP FRASER. PART i. This elaborate plan seems to have startled the Mozleys ; and to have drawn a remonstrance and caution from them by return of post. They had not then discovered what a superb business faculty their young friend possessed. To this he replied: "You must not judge me too hastily. I never thought of this as one of the things to be done imme- diately, but only as a scheme in my head which I one day hope to realise. I should not even have attempted the memorial window till the church was finished, had not my calculations justified me in thinking I could manage my part in both at the same time. For you must not suppose that I am encountering the expense of these works alone. In the memorial window, for instance, my mother, my uncle, and my aunt share the expense with me ; which will not make our several contingents more than 4o/. Again, for the school- house, the most essential need of the parish by far, my mother has promised me ioo/., and my uncle something, so that I do not think what will have to come out of my own pocket will exceed 3oo/. Now, you know, I really have a very good income, with my fellowship and the living together, and an occasional pupil; not much less than 55o/. or 6oo/. a year. My mother pays me aoo/. towards house expenses, and these hardly exceed 4oo/. a year, horses and all included, so that I have a considerable surplus, and though the expenses of furnishing, building, exchanging the glebe, &c., will have been rather heavy upon me, and do not leave me much to spare now ; and the schoolhouse is a prospective drain in the same direction ; yet, when all this is done, and all the annual claims of the parish (which do not come to 5 went to Beverley Farm, an exquisite sea-side residence of Charles Loring, a leading Boston lawyer and intimate friend of Goldwin Smith's, to spend three days. If you see Dr/ CHAP. vi. A POLITICAL MEETING. 135 Smith " [Goldwin Smith's father, living near Reading] " you can gratify him by telling him in what universal esteem Goldwin is held in Boston, and indeed everywhere I have been." In the week he spent on his work in the " queen city " the thermometer was ranging between 90 and 100 in the shade. " It made me feel very languid and clammy all day long, and at night was hardly cooler, but I found I stood it as well as those to the manner born, and I don't think I shall take any harm, for they tell me it is not likely to be any hotter." From Cincinnati he sailed up the Ohio to visit " Uncle Harry " at his Kentucky farm near Vanceburg, at which city he writes in passing, "I witnessed a characteristic scene. The two candidates for that district had come to Vanceburg to ' stump the country,' i.e. to make speeches and declare their political views. I went to hear them, and was a good deal struck by the ability of one of the speakers. The occasion however was disgraced by a row. One of the candidates told the other that 'he told a d d lie,' upon which an uproar ensued beggaring description. Revolvers were drawn and oaths sworn, throats seized, shirts torn, and I began to think we were in for a regular American row. But it happily evaporated before any worse damage was done than a few shirts torn to rags, and I was pleased to be told for the credit of their institutions that such rows were a rare occurrence even in Kentucky." " Uncle Harry's place is beautifully situated, but both the house and their style of living are of the most primitive kind. . . They seem to be doing very fairly well, though I sus- 136 LIFE OF BISHOP FRASER. PART i. pect they let things slip through their hands a bit, and there are not many tokens of tidiness about. The house is merely a log house, which my uncle has been talking of rebuilding ever since he came here (sixteen years), but it is only talk still. The steam-saw has stood still for four years, and looks neglected, and can't be run again until it has a new boiler, which will cost $1100. The shoemaker's shop is untenanted. They sell no lumber now, but occupy themselves with farming and bark-peeling, the latter being a profitable trade. They own altogether about 4,000 acres. The estate at Sulphur Branch is 2,600, of which about 200 are cleared. Uncle has also a farm at Clarksbury of 300, which he lets ; Jack and Tom have another at Maysville of the same size. Edward (who is getting on better than he ever yet has done) has another, about ten miles off, of 300. Their stock at Sulphur Branch is of this amount : Seven horses, twenty-four beasts and cows, fifty sheep, fifty hogs, twenty-five geese, and one hundred poultry. My aunt is a wonderful woman for activity and industry, always busy, and looks as hard-worked as any labourer's wife in Ufton. My uncle does nothing now, indeed, Jack says, he has done nothing ever since they have been at Sulphur. Nothing could exceed the kindness of their reception of me ; and, though neither their way of life suited my taste nor their fare my stomach, I could not but look with the deepest interest on such a picture of rural simplicity and happiness. ... I have taken my homeward passage on the Cuba, leaving New York October 4th. . . . The country has become calmer, and I meet with less of the bitter feeling towards England, but almost every day I find tokens that it still exists, and every one feels the difficulty of political reconstruction amongst themselves. I am very glad I had the opportunity of coming here, I never should have understood this country otherwise. English CHAP. vi. GENERAL SHERMAN. 137 journalists, and statesmen too, seem to me utterly in the dark about it." Toronto, July 27 th, after visiting St, Louis and Chicago. " I have now seen the great rivers of the American con- tinent, and wonderful they are, and wonderful it was to sje seventy or eighty huge steamers, each perhaps capable of carrying from 500 to 1000 passengers, lying at one time along the levee (or quay) of St. Louis. At St. Louis I saw General Sherman, though I was not introduced to him, and was much struck with his appearance, looking every inch the man who should have done what he has done. At Niagara, I never wearied of sitting in the piazza of the Clifton House (the hotel on the Canadian side, and one of the nicest I have been in) and gazing at the panorama of both Falls. If the reality did not surpass my expectation neither did it on the other hand fall below it. I was satisfied" August Sf/i. " The Canadian schools, I am sorry to say, are just going into vacation, indeed to-day is breaking-up day, and I have been attending an examination of one of them for two hours of the forenoon and as many of the afternoon, besides making a speech to the children, the inevitable penalty, as I find it, of the ' distinguished posi- tion ' I have the honour to hold. So I shall occupy myself getting up my notes, and there is a teachers' afternoon meeting to be held, which I shall be glad to attend and compare with the similar one at Cincinnati." Sf. Louis Hotel, Quebec, August iqt/i, 1865.- "I arrived here by steamer from Montreal this morning and find yours (No. 4, with dates up to August 4th) waiting for me. ... So dear old Alex " [his brother, the Colonel] " is in England ! 138 LIFE OF BISHOP FRASER. PART I. What an unexpected surprise and pleasure ! I hope he won't be in any hurry, or under any necessity, to be ' going ' again just yet. I had already begun to count the weeks that yet remain before my return, and I shall count them now with twofold anxiety. On the i4th or isth October I expect, all being well, to touch once more dear old England's soil. I shall love it none the less for my six months' absence; and you may tell the good squire of Sulhampstead that, amongst others near and dear, I shall be just as glad to see his cheery face again as he says he shall be to see mine. In my solitary moments, which are not few, I often draw pictures of you all, Sundays and other days, and amuse myself by fancying how you are all engaged. The great drawback I find to the pleasure of this trip of mine is that it has to be made so much alone, and though I have heaps of kind acquaintances, and even of friends, I yet often feel the want of a genial companion, such as Arthur Blair was last summer. Tell Meacher he had better get the mare into order for the Colonel's riding, though if he has got so fat, and I presume proportionally heavy, perhaps he'll find it safer to use old Monmouth for his charger, as he scarcely ever stumbles, while the mare is apt to be careless. At any rate, let him use the horses and carriages as freely as if they were his own ; and add also, with my love, that I hope he'll make Ufton Rectory his home as long as he stays in England, and that we'll try and make him forget some of the grievances and annoyances that disturb his peace elsewhere. By the by, don't let that champagne spoil in the case, for I know you all like it even Aunt Lucy, though she does sometimes look the other way when I am filling her glass and it'll never be better fit for drinking than it is now. ... I saw James's " [an old servant of Mr. Christie, the former rector! " two sons CHAP. vi. PARISHIONERS' RELATIVES. 139 who are stationed in the artillery barracks at Montreal, and you may tell him they both looked very well, and the one who has had the small-pox is not at all marked by it. They told me their brother Jack had enlisted, but that his father had bought him out. Tell James I think he might have done better in saving his money, and letting that somewhat unprofitable youth (I fear) come to his senses and know when he was well off by going through a little military discipline. Tell Mrs. Pearce also that I saw her brother, Samuel Lee, and his wife and their three little children, the youngest named Rebecca, after her. He is a very quiet, respectable-looking man, living as coachman with a Montreal merchant, and earning $14 a month (about 2 175.) besides board and clothes. His wife is Irish and a Roman Catholic. He regrets the latter, but says they live very happily together. He is quite comfortable, and says Canada is a country in which any one may do well who has a mind to try. ... I left Toronto by the steamer for Montreal, The run is about 280 miles, and occupies from two p.m. one day to six p.m. on the next. Among the passengers were Mr. and Mrs. Charles Kean, who are starring in America, and whose acquaintance I slightly made on the voyage. The route is down Lake Ontario and then down the St. Lawrence, the grandest river in the world. The points of chief interest are what are called the Thousand Islands, just below Kingston ; the rapids, three in number, very exciting and not a little dangerous, but through which adventurous pilots carry adventurous travel- lers two or three times a day without any serious accident as yet having ever occurred. To show how little one often really knows what danger is, about a mile after we had run through the La Chine rapid, the most formidable of them all, and were about half a mile from the wonderful Victoria 140 LIFE OF BISHOP FRASER. PART i. tubular bridge, and within sight of Montreal, our pilot, hugging the shore rather too closely, ran the ship on a rock, over which however she did manage to scrape heavily, I believe without any serious damage, but not without giving one or two awkward lurches, and sending one or two ladies on board into fainting fits. It was just within an ace of being a bad accident; if there had been six inches less water in the river the ship would probably have struck hard enough to have sunk her. There are such risks in American travel from the recklessness of conductors and pilots. . . . I was delighted at the result of our Berks election so far as our squire (Mr. Benyon) was concerned. Though I am much more of a Liberal than a Conservative, I should have been sorry indeed if he had not retained his seat. His companions in honour I do not know, and care about therefore less ; but as I think the Liberal party are strong enough, and the country is better governed when there is a tolerably powerful opposition, I don't grudge them their victory, and though I respect John Walter for many points in his character, he really is so puffed up with the conceit that he is a sort of walking incarnation of the wisdom of the Times, that his defeat didn't draw any tears from my eyes. If he wants his conceit lessened he should come to America, and hear what the Yankees say and think of his newspaper. He would really stand a good chance of being tarred and feathered. In the hotel at Montreal I saw Dr. Charles Mackay, who for the last three years of the war was the Times' correspondent at New York. I looked upon him with anything but liking, as the man who, more than any one else (except perhaps Lord Russell, and he has done it unintentionally, because it is his nature to write irritating despatches), has stirred up the bad blood between us and the Americans, or rather between the Americans and us. CHAP. VI. THE TIMES. 141 The Americans however have their feelings soon up and down, and I think the ill-dispositions towards England are already much mitigated. ... By the way, thank Mrs. Benyon for her kind interest in me, but nobody need be alarmed about me on that head. If I ever marry any one you may depend it will be an Englishwoman. I see no foreigners to match my own countrywomen, and as to American ladies, though there are many fine points in their character, there are others that are anything but attractive to me, and suggestive of anything but love. " Nothing for a long time has interested me more than Mr. Whymper's letter in the Times of August 8th, describing the late fatal accident on the Matterhorn. You know I was at Zermatt last year, and heard all the speculations as to its accessibility, and the stories of failure of attempts already made. It seems however an accident that might have happened anywhere, and when the first panic has subsided the Matterhorn will probably submit to be conquered, as Mont Blanc and Monte Rosa have been. But I don't think the Colonel and I will ever attempt the feat, my own ambition not lying that way. The Weiss Thor last year was as much as I felt myself equal to. ... I return on the 25th by steamboat to Montreal. From thence I shall take a run to Ottawa, the new capital, to which the seat of Government is just going to be moved, where they say the new public buildings are the finest on this continent. I then return to the States, vzd Lake Champlain, to Albany, thence down the Hudson to New York. If I have time I may take a run to Philadelphia and Washington, just to see those cities." Quebec Citadel. "The foolish English people are just commencing to spend a million on strengthening and extend- 142 LIFE OF BISHOP FRASER. PART i. ing the fortification, which, in my opinion, and that of most Canadians I have talked with, won't contribute in any appre- ciable degree to the strength of Canada. I always thought it an absurd waste of money, and now that I see things on the spot I am still more convinced of its futility." New York, Sept. i2//i, 1865. After speaking of his run to Ottawa and journey from Montreal through Vermont : "On 3ist I had a beautiful steam down Lakes Champlain and George to Caldwell at the head of the latter lake, passing Crown Point, Fort Ticonderoga, and other points, all with historical names connected with the revolutionary war. The scenery is beautiful on these two lakes, lying between the Green Mountains of Vermont on one side and the Adirondacs of New York State on the other. On September ist my day's journey was to Saratoga Springs near which place Burgoyne's army surrendered now a place of most fashionable resort, famous also for its medicinal waters, of which I imbibed a considerable quantity during the three days I stayed there, not without benefit, I think. I was fortunate in finding all the Minturn family staying at the same hotel at which I put up, which made my sojourn much more agreeable. " On September 4th I left Saratoga for Albany, the capital of the New York State, where I stayed a day longer than I intended, in order to be present at the marriage of a Mr. Pruyn, a gentleman to whom I had introductions, who was particularly kind to me, and also particularly anxious that I should see him make his second matrimonial experiment. It was a very gay and pretty wedding, sdon la mode Anglaise, celebrated in a very handsome church by the Bishop of New York, the newly-married couple receiving the Sacrament. Marriages are not always so solemn an affair in the States. CHAP. vi. WEST POINT. 143 In most of the States people may be married at any place and at any time, and by any person ; and in New York State two persons may even marry themselves, by simply declaring, before any two people, that they intend to live as man and wife together. " On September 8th I left Albany, steaming down the beautiful Hudson River, with its banks studded on both sides with villa residences and thriving towns and villages, as far as West Point, the famous Military Academy of the United States, which educated all the great generals on both sides during the late war Grant, Sherman, and Sheridan, as well as Lee, Beauregard, and Stonewall Jackson. I had letters of introduction to Professor French, the chaplain, who would take no denial but that I must take up my quarters with him, and preach to the cadets on Sunday in the chapel of the academy which, accordingly, I did, and a very pleasant three days I spent. West Point possesses some of the finest scenery I have seen in America, commanding beautiful views up and down the Hudson, and embosomed in rich woods. " I was quite gratified with that correspondence between Thoyts and Mowbray. The honest heart of the former showed itself in every line of his letters. I am afraid I get day by day less and less of a Conservative myself; but I have none the less respect for men of all parties who stick to their principles ; and I rejoiced over the result of the Berk- shire election, as far as our own good squire was concerned. " I do not like Alex's account of himself. I am afraid the pain in the back comes from some affection of the kidneys, incipient Bright' s disease or diabetes both of them generally the results of sedentary habits and over brain work. Tell him there is lots of claret in the cellar, which I hope he will set to work upon as soon as he pleases. If Aunt 144 LIFE OF BISHOP FRASER. PART i. Lucy does not remember which it is, I can tell her. It is the larger quantity in those shelves on the right side entering the cellar, with a green seal, I think, labelled ' Claret-at-es.' That's the ordinary claret, the other is much higher priced, and only for special occasions." New York, Sept. zoth, 1865. "I did not intend writing to you again this side of the Atlantic. But, though I am going to sail in a good ship (the Australasian], with a good captain (Cook), and in one of the best months of the year (October), yet there is always a risk in an ocean voyage, and there will at any rate be no harm done in mentioning before- hand one or two things, in case anything should happen. "(i) I have eleven of the London and Westminster Bank's io/. circular notes left untouched, nor shall I have occasion to cash any more. So that there will be no/, due from them to my estate. " (2) My will is in my mahogany desk, the key of which however I have with me. "(3) The Commissioners advanced me soo/. for my travelling expenses, which is, or rather will be, as nearly as possible exhausted. So that there will be nothing due to them or from them. They will hardly pay me my 5o/. a month for my work if it all gets buried with myself at the bottom of the ocean. " I merely mention these points by way of precaution, and that you may know how to act in case of anything befalling me ; but I anticipate no such mischance, and trust that the same kind Providence which has watched over me through so many thousand miles of travel thus far, will restore me once more to those whom I so dearly love in old England ; and who, I know, will remember me where I desire to be remembered by them in their prayers. CHAP. vi. HOMEWARD BOUND. 145 " I have now just a week more to spend in this country. I hope to sail for England on Wednesday, October 4th, all arrangements beyond that day to remain as I have already fixed them. I seem as if I should feel like a child when I get back to Ufton again, and find myself surrounded by so many dear familiar faces, and pleasant scenes. Five months solitary travel have been quite enough for me, and I am fairly home-sick, and count the days impatiently. There are but seven more nights and days, before I shall set my face towards the ' East Country ; ' and in a fortnight more I shall hope to be an inmate of my old home again. " I have received an immense deal of kindness, first and last, in America ; I must constitute myself in return a sort of general host of all Americans visiting England. I wish the two countries understood one another rather better, and were more inclined to be friends. As it is the hostile feeling of Americans generally towards England seems to me as in- tense as ever : indeed, just now, for some reason or other, the newspapers in a body seem to be engaged in fanning the flame. They have just got hold of a list of about a dozen subscribers to the Confederate Loan, among whom is W. E. Gladstone, to my surprise, down for 2,ooo/. 1 This, as you might expect, is a topic for excited ' editorials,' and the cry is that the American Government ought to demand his dismissal from the English Ministry. And so they run on ; the merest trifle becoming fearfully exaggerated, and adding fuel to the flame. It's a great pity ! " Ship "Australasian" at Sea, October i$th, 1865. "The passengers are a very mixed lot, the bulk of them being men 1 This was a mistake of the Americans and the Bishop. On the pub- lication of this Life Mr. W. E. Gladstone at once wrote to deny that he ever had held this or any other sum in Confederate Stock. The holder was Mr. W. Gladstone, head of the firm of Thomson, Bonar & Co. 146 LIFE OF BISHOP FRASER. PART i. in trade at New York, whose talk is chiefly of ' dry goods' and 'dollars.' But I get on pretty well in almost all com- panies ; and as they are intelligent and well-informed in their own departments, I can talk with most of them with pleasure and profit. I have a very good berth, nearly amid- ships ; and the ' State room ' is twice as large as that which held two of us on the Scotia. My companion is an Indian Officer (Madras) of the io5th Foot, Captain Bradish a very pleasant, accommodating man, with whom I get on, as the Americans say, 'first-rate.' " We had service on board on Sunday, and I officiated. I had a good congregation, including a considerable sprinkling Qijews. My sermon, which was on the subject of good-will between nations, appeared to give satisfaction, and several people expressed their gratification at the service altogether. On these occasions only a small proportion perhaps belong to, or are familiar with the ritual of, the Church of England. Here there were Jews, Presbyterians, Methodists, &c., so that I was rather pleased to hear them express themselves as being comforted by the service." Liverpool, Sunday, October \$th. "Here I am, safe, sound, and well. We arrived at our moorings at 8.30 A.M., and I landed at the landing stage, to be welcomed by dear old Alex, at 10.30. I wished to have been in time for church ; but was delayed by the luggage, which had to be looked after, and as we leave for Manchester at 2.15, this will be a broken Sunday. My heart however is not the less thankful to the Gocd Providence which has watched over me all these last six months, and has now brought me safely to English soil again. " Tell Meacher to come to meet us in the dog-cart with the mare, and Charles to bring the cart with Monmouth for CHAP. vi. REPORT. 147 the baggage, which will be a little ponderous. As the mare will not have been in harness for some time, tell Meacher to exercise her well before starting, or she may be trouble- some." Space cannot be spared for more than a few short extracts from the conclusions of his Report on the American Schools. Some of these he modified in after years : " If people suppose that every American rate-supported school is in a state of efficiency they are simply labouring under an entire misconception." The subdivision of town- ships into school districts he protested against as a most mischievous step, as by it the schools fell a prey to politicians. The system of aid from the rates, " leads by moral and logical necessity to pure secular education. There is no middle course, unhappily, between purely secular and purely denominational education." . . "The result of this inquiry would make me less hostile to purely secular education (which I am far from thinking the American public school education is) than it would have ten years ago. Our religious teaching has not produced religious intelligence or stability in our people." . . " I have reduced the so-called religious instruction in my school to a minimum." . . "Speaking for myself I should not shrink from taking what I conceive to be my proper place as a clergyman in relation to the school, even under a system of secular education. I should neither despair of Christianity nor morality. The Sunday school would start out of its present lethargy. At any rate religious truth in the alone sense in which every one prizes it i.e. in his own sense would not have to be compromised, adjusted, trimmed, pared down." . . " I share the regret of the super- L 2 148 LIFE OF BISHOP FRASER. PART I. intendents of education in Pennsylvania and Upper Canada, that the clergy as a body stand aloof from the schools. I could still with a good conscience co-operate as a clergyman with a scheme of education which to many would seem the extremest and most lamentable change of all." . . " The clergyman, if he cared to teach in a school at all, might find that he could establish as cordial and hopeful relations between himself and the younger members of his flock through the medium of a lesson in arithmetic or grammar, as through a lesson occupied with the terms or formulae of dogmatic or polemical theology." " I hope," the report concludes, "no reader will think I am catching at an opportunity of obtruding my own opinions. The inquiry I have conducted has helped powerfully, if not to form, at any rate to mature them. And, as parts of the fruits of that inquiry, I thought I might without arrogance, and indeed that in honesty I ought to, lay them before the world." CHAPTER VII. " For better it is that it be said unto thee, Come up hither ; than that thou shouldest be put lower in the presence of the prince whom thine eyes have seen." PROV. xxv. v. 7. UFTON NERVET AND THE AGRICULTURAL CHILDREN'S COMMISSION. 1866 1870. 1866. His report on the schools of the United States was sent in early in 1866, and from that time it is clear that he was marked out for promotion. Not only had he proved him- self by his strictly professional work, one who came very nearly up to the ideal of a Christian minister a spiritual captain, " an enlightener of daily life, one who is bringing down daily light from heaven into the life of their people," but his reports as an Educational Commissioner had gained him an almost unrivalled reputation as a man capable of grappling successfully with the many difficult problems of the question, which was beginning to exercise, more than almost any other, the minds of public men. We shall soon see indications of the esteem in which he was now held in high quarters. Meantime he was quietly back again in his Ufton home with his mother and aunt, engaged in bringing up house and garden, stable and glebe, church and schools, to the highest standard of order and efficiency, from which they had slightly lapsed during his absence in America. These, with occasional work as examiner at Oxford, or one 150 LIFE OF BISHOP FRASER. PART i. and another of the public schools (which indeed he had never dropped) made the next year at Ufton pass swiftly and happily. To Mr. Mozley. July $rd, 1866. "Anything you wish me to do in the way of carrying out your benevolent inten- tions to Mrs. Marsh " [a poor woman, who, with her children had followed him from Cholderton] " I will gladly undertake. She had already told me of your extreme liberality towards her. I don't see much change in her, poor thing. She has her bad and good days, and I don't suppose any medical man would guarantee her life for more than from week to week. Harriet " [Mrs. Marsh's daughter] " came home from Salisbury on Saturday. She did remarkably well at the Christmas Examination, and I hear a good account of her at the Training School. If anything should happen to my present schoolmistress (and she is engaged to be married) I should like Harriet to succeed her. I managed to get Edgar taken into service as a pupil teacher at Bradfield School. He has not yet passed his examination, but will have to do so in the course of this month. I have no fears of his success. His salary is to be i2/. for the first year, increasing i/. a year to the end of his five years' term. I have been a good deal away from home lately, examining. I spent a week in Oxford, on the Craven Scholarship : the next at Macclesfield, and the last at Tiverton. Now I am come home, like you, to be quiet. Can't you drive over Mrs. Mozley some day towards the end of the month, and have an early dinner, and a chat, and a game of croquet ? At present I am rather in a litter, for I am putting up a new greenhouse, and some heating pits, &c. This finished, I shall make no more additions to the premises, but content myself with keeping things tidy." CHAP. vii. "ECCE HOMO." 151 To the Same. " I heard of Mr. Jennings " [the Times' correspondent] " when I was in America from Bishop Whipple " [of Minnesota, who shared his state room on the outward voyage] "but did not see him. I saw however but only saw his predecessor, Dr. Mackay, at Montreal. I was not drawn towards him, because to say the truth, I could not but attribute to the vicious tone of his letters much of the ill-will towards England, that I found almost universally existing in the minds of Americans. Mr. Jennings has succeeded in speaking the truth (though, I can see, with some little bias) and yet in avoiding unnecessary irritation. I can't bear the thought of bad blood in the relations between the two countries ; and there is so much to admire in the American character, that one can afford to overlook t\iQ faucce maculce, which certainly are blemishes in the eyes of an Englishman. By the way, I wonder if you would care to read, or rather dip into, my report on their schools, because if so, I have three or four copies circu- lating amongst my friends, and would direct one in the course of its travels to call at Finchampstead. By the way, I saw a letter the other day from Longmans' head man, in which it was stated that opinion in London was generally settling down to the belief that Chretien was the author of Ecce Homo. Judging from internal evidence I cannot be- lieve it. There are passages in the book which I cannot conceive as proceeding from Chretien's reverent mind." To the Same. " Yes, young Oriel is not quite like what it was in your day, or even in my own earlier time. I am afraid the college, socially speaking, is sadly disorganised, and no two fellows can be got to agree in opinion even as to how the fabric, which is getting into a miserable plight, shall be repaired. Parker, who is an artist of no mean 152 LIFE OF BISHOP FRASER. PART i. power, is for restoring in brick I believe, and I am not sure but what the advice is good. It is interesting to hear what you say about Newman. I should think, as you write, that he is changed in nothing but in views. Certainly his heart seems as warm towards old friends, and his intellect as keen and trenchant as ever. Now I look again at your MS. I am not sure that I have deciphered you correctly. Perhaps you wrote ' more changed in voice (not views) than anything else.' I often fancy some of your hieroglyphics must puzzle the gentlemen in Printing House Square. Kind remem- brance from all of us to your wife. We have three nephews spending their holidays with us, which makes us a house full." . . . "Poor old Meacher ! I would offer to pension him, but it would break his heart." His public work had by this time attracted the attention of the dispensers of the highest patronage. He was first made aware of the fact by the unlooked-for offer of the Bishopric of Calcutta, which came to him on the 7th of December, in the following letter from Mr. (now Sir John) Movvbray, an old friend and neighbour, then Under Secretary at the Foreign Office : " MY DEAR FRASER, " I am commissioned by Lord Cranbourne to make you the offer of the Bishopric of Calcutta. During the last ten days he has considered several names, and he thinks you the fittest man. I sincerely hope you may feel yourself able to accept it. I write with very mixed feelings. I have long thought you had such special capacities for doing good in your generation, that your sphere of action ought not to be limited to a country vicarage. I have wished to see you an English Bishop, and I told Cranbourne so. I shall be sorry to see you CHAP. vil. BISHOPRIC OF CALCUTTA. 153 leave England ; but this is a great opening. India is a noble field for labour, and I fully believe that you would in various ways combine important qualifications for the post. You are in prime vigour of mind and body. You bring scholarship, a varied experience of men, considerable knowledge of education in every rank and condition of life, great powers of expressing yourself both in the pulpit and on the platform, and above all a thorough love of the truth, and a genial, hearty, conciliatory spirit. I believe you would discharge your duties in a way to reflect credit on your appointment, but I don't like the thought of the pang it would cause Mrs. Fraser to see you leave England. As Mrs. Mowbray observed, we almost appear to be traitors in seeking to disturb the repose of your happy home, and I cannot tell you how we shall all miss our happy Sundays at Ufton, and how little hope I shall have of seeing such a man again near us. But this I know is sure to be some day in any case. It is only Calcutta, or somewhere else. It seems to me a special call, and I am sure you will think it well over. I hope to be at home all to-morrow. If you like to come over I shall be in until luncheon, or at two I will come over to you. I should much like to talk it over with you. "Yours sincerely, "J. MOWBRAY." To Mr. Mozley. December, 26^/1, 1866. "Lord Cran- bourne, who is a perfect stranger to me, has offered me the Bishopric of Calcutta, and after long and serious debate of the matter with myself I have declined it. Some of my friends think I have done wrong, others approve my choice. My main reasons (over and above a strong personal sense of insufficiency) were (i) that I thought myself too old at 154 LIFE OF BISHOP FRASER. PART i. forty-eight to commence such a career ; (2) that I was afraid of the climate, which has told seriously on the constitutions of all my brothers who have served there ; (3) that I could not persuade myself to break up my home, and turn my mother and aunt at their age adrift upon the world. Of course the work and the position offered many attractions, and were all that my zeal or ambition could desire, and I was afraid I might be shrinking back from sloth and love of ease. But now that I have made up my mind, I think I have decided rightly and for the best ; it has however been a crisis in my life that such an opportunity was ever placed within my reach. I had a letter yesterday from John Walter, who I was glad to find has returned home safe, and sound, and pleased with what he has seen [in America]. He asked me to let him read my report on the American schools while his own impressions of them are fresh, and I have sent him a copy. I don't know whether you care to see it before it comes back to me, if you should you are at perfect liberty to borrow it, only as it is my only complete copy, I must ask for it again." To Sale, on the offer of Calcutta. Ufton, December ijt/t, 1866. "I felt myself too old, I dreaded the climate, hot weather (as I found last year in America) always more or less incapacitating me for exertion, mental as well as bodily. I had a misgiving of my capacity for the work ; I am a poor linguist ; I do not feel sure that I should make a good administrator ; I shrink from having to speak with authority upon some of the vexed questions on which my own mind is still unresolved. And so I calmly, but after anxious deliber- ation, put the offer away. It is rather singular that the bishopric was previously offered to Kay, who from the work he has done in India was clearly entitled to the compliment, CHAP. vii. A BISHOP'S REBUKE. 155 though in his broken health it could hardly be considered anything more ; and thus two men who entered college the same day have each had the chance of being Metropolitan of India, a position proud enough to satisfy the legitimate ambitions of any man." 1867. To Mr. Tooke. January znd, 1867, /// answer to questions as to his reasons. "My conviction is even stronger than it was, that, even if I had been intellectually and spiritually equal to the work, my bodily strength would have failed me in that climate ; and it would have been inexpressibly painful to me to find out, that I had given up work to which I was equal for other which was too much for me. ... I fear our dear Bishop is heaping up diocesan troubles for himself, especially from the laity. It was an unlucky moment when he felt moved to rebuke S.G.O. (worthy as he was of animadversion) in a public print. Yet, all he does springs from such high and simple motives, that if the world were only a little more tolerant, and a little fairer in its judgments his conduct would not be misconstrued. What I lament most is that I fear his mind and convictions are forming themselves more and more on a pattern which is not that of the thoughts and feelings of his age. If a man is wholly out of gear with his time, he cannot influence. And that is what I fear for the Bishop, a loss of influence." Of the Calcutta offer Dean Church wrote : "I do not doubt that you have judged wisely under the circumstances, but I cannot help feeling sorry that so promising a combina- tion of place and man has not been possible." To Mr. Tooke. February 13^, 1867, after congratulations on his marriage. "Our homes are peaceful enough, but 156 LIFE OF BISHOP FRASER. PART i. storms seem brewing in all directions in the outer world, in Church and State, and no pilot has yet shown himself with capacity to weather them. We seem to be approaching the destructive epoch of English history; and revolution with no principles of reconstruction is the order of the day. I want to see a great effort made to really popularise the Church and education. The masses are hostile to the one and indifferent to the other. Why is this ? and why are we clergy so misrepresented (as by Goldwin Smith who never misses a chance of having a shot at us) and so misunder- stood ? Here have I, for instance, been working three nights a week for fifteen weeks this winter, with twenty-four night scholars, not one of whom, I venture to say, feels anything like gratitude to me for my trouble, or fancies that I have done anything to deserve thanks I don't want thanks, but I wish they felt I had really been labouring for their good. This is but a type of a thousand other things, but I mustn't croak in a letter meant to carry felicitations." To Mr. Mozley. July, 1867, " I hope you won't give up altogether your connection with Printing House Square. It would be like a man who has been a hard drinker, giving up wine and spirits all at once and so killing himself. I weighed the other day and was frightened to find myself fourteen and a half stone, and steadily increasing, I fear, in weight." In the early autumn he was appointed a Commissioner on the Children's Employment Commission, for the south- eastern district. As usual, he wrote journal letters to his mother, from which the following are extracts : " I was pleased to hear so much better an account of Chevithorne " [a new horse]. " I think Brown may as well go on with him, and now that he is putting him into double CHAP. vn. H.M.'S COMMISSIONER. 157 harness, I hope he won't have much more difficulty. All harness-horses ought to be broken first to double harness, by; the side of an old steady horse ; but Chevithorne did so well the two days he was out with me, that I hardly thought it would have been necessary in his case. The young gentle- man however seems to have a will of his own, which I hope Brown will be able to subdue by gentleness. How are the invalids of the parish ? Kedgeree is a capital thing for breakfast. I inclose a receipt to be copied into our book. " I find I get on pretty well with my work, and the farmers are very civil, and, though I hear some of them have strange ideas of his functions, pay great respect to ' Her Majesty's Commissioner.' I was told yesterday that some of them thought I was come to divert the tithe from the parsons, and to double with it the wages of the agricultural labourer." Norwich, July i2th, 1867. " I quite agree with you that poor Bruno" [an old dog] "would be better put out of his misery. Thomas Pearce would shoot him, or Mr. Thoyts's keeper, and he could be buried at the root of some tree. His life, I am sure, is a burden to him. " I am vexed that Brown hasn't come up yet to drive Chevithorne. If he delays longer, let Meacher ride down after him ; otherwise the horse will forget the little training that I gave him. " I dare say the bill for the soil from the London seeds- man is all right, and you had better pay it, and tell James to be careful not to waste either the peat or the cocoa fibre. " I hope the tea will turn out good, I have no doubt the proper quantities are sent. A 1 2 Ib. canister at 2s., another at 2s. 6d. ; 2 Ibs. flowery pekoe, for mixing, at 3^. 6d., and 31 Ibs. coffee at is. 8 p. 101. " At all times a man who would do faithfully must believe firmly." CARLYLE. PART II. CHAPTER I. " Who is the happy warrior ? who is he Whom every inan-at-arms would wish to be? It is the generous spirit, who, when brought Among the tasks of real life, hath wrought Upon the plan that pleased his childish thought." WORDSWORTH. THE TRANSITION. 1870. THE document which was to alter the whole course and character of the life of this contented and happy country parson ran as follows : " Hawarden Castle, January $rd, 1870. DEAR MR. FRASER, I write to place the See of Manchester at your disposal. I will not enumerate the long list of qualifications over and above entire devotedness to the sacred calling, for which I earnestly seek in the selection of any name to submit to Her Majesty with reference to any vacant bishopric. But I must say with perfect truth that it is with reference to qualifications only that I make the present overture. As respects the particular See, it is your interest in and mastery of the question of public education which has led me to believe you might perform at Man- chester, wilh reference to that question, a most important work for the Church and for the country. Manchester is 184 LIFE OF BISHOP FRASER. PART n. the centre of the modern life of the country. I cannot exaggerate the importance of the See, or the weight and force of the demands it will make on the energies of a bishop, and on his spirit of self-sacrifice. You will, I hope not recoil from them, and I trust that strength to meet them all will be given you in abundance. " Believe me faithfully yours, " W. E. G." It is not easy to see how a great charge could be offered more honourably, or at the same time with less of gilding. No wonder that it should have staggered the recipient for the moment, bringing him as it did thus suddenly face to face with the " demands " so tersely indicated in the Premier's offer. He replied : " Ufton, January $th, 1870. DEAR SIR, Your letter, and the utterly unexpected offer it contains, has profoundly moved me. Am I making an unreasonable request in asking to be allowed a week to consider the answer I ought to give to it? My first impulse was, from a most real and unaffected consciousness of unworthiness, to decline. But probably every one to whom such an offer was made would have the same feeling at first ; and my life, as I read it, seems to have been such a succession of providences that my second thought was, that by refusing to enter on a wider sphere of usefulness I might be drawing back from a call. Happily I have no desire for either wealth or rank, nor any ambition beyond that of wishing to be as useful a citizen both of the realm of England, and of the kingdom of our Lord, as I have power to be. I quite feel all that you so justly say about the noble opportunities offered by such a diocese as Manchester. All I mistrust is my own adequacy CHAP. I. HESITATION. 185 to them. I should wish therefore for time to take counsel with some of my friends who have known me longest, and by whose judgment I should like to be guided in a matter of this kind my Provost, Dr. Hawkins, Church, Liddon, Edward Hamilton, etc. ; for time also to think over so important a step important not only to my own happiness, but to the highest interests of an imperilled Church at an anxious time calmly with my own family, and earnestly as in the sight of God. I humbly trust I shall be guided aright. At present I need say no more than that I will not allow any merely personal consideration of ease, or comfort, or ambition to determine my resolve. With a deep sense not only of what is implied in your offer, but of the manner in which it has been conveyed, " I beg to remain, my dear Sir, " Yours most faithfully, "JAMES FRASER." " Hawarden, January it/i, 1870. MY DEAR SIR, I have received your letter, which does you so much honour in every sense, and I accede of course to your request, only adding that I am sure you will render the interval as short as you possibly can. " I am, etc., etc., "W. E. GLADSTONE." Anticipating the Premier's reply, Eraser had already, with his usual promptness, written to nine of his friends for their counsel. That to Mr. Tooke, the only one apparently which has been preserved, was as follows : " Private. UJton, January 6t/i, 1870. I am in a grave perplexity, and want the honest counsel of sincere friends. 186 LIFE OF BISHOP FRASER. PART n. Gladstone, in a most touching and generous way, has offered me the bishopric of Manchester. On all personal grounds I should at once shrink from such a perilous responsibility ; but second thoughts tell me that, in doing so, I might be shrinking from a call, and that personal considerations ought to be overbalanced by the claims of public duty. So I have asked for a week to consider the matter calmly, as before God, and to take -counsel with my friends. Without any undue or affected depreciation of my own powers, I am profoundly sensible of my inadequacy to the work of a bishop at the present time. The perfect conception of a bishop is of one who can lead men, inspire and sustain work, repair breaches, reconcile differences, mitigate bitter- nesses, help men to the solution of the problems that hold the reason and even the conscience sometimes, in suspense. No one can be more aware of my unfitness for the more difficult parts of such work than I am myself. But who is sufficient ? At any rate, if you know any cause or just impediment and you know me intus et in cute don't let me take a step which must be irrevocable, and which may be full of the gravest consequences, not to myself merely, but to the Church of Christ don't let me take the step unwarned. We have known one another long enough to speak the truth face to face, and I have no such hankering after rank, or wealth, or a more conspicuous station, as to desire to be placed in a post, the duties of which I should be found unequal to discharge. Keep this communication in confidence, till I have made up my mind, help me with your counsel, and pray for me that I may be guided to a right conclusion." Besides writing to his distant friends he went over to consult Sir John Mowbray. " He came directly after break- CHAP. I. ACCEPTANCE. 187 fast with Mr. Gladstone's letter in his hand," Sir John writes, " looking as pale as a sheet. I read it and said, ' You are the very man for the place.' He expressed in very strong terms his unfitness. I replied, ' Mr. Gladstone and I seldom agree on any subject, but our coincidence on this is remark- able. If you will come into the drawing-room and see my wife, she will tell you that I said, years ago, " if I were Prime Minister I would make Fraser a Bishop, and send him to Lancashire or the Black Country, as I think he is eminently qualified to influence such a population." ' And when in 1867, Lord Derby made George Selwyn Bishop of Lichfield, I said to my wife, ' there is Manchester still left for Fraser.' I pressed him most strongly to accept, and he said he would take a week to consult Church, Liddon, and others." Before the end of the week he had asked for he had made up his mind to accept the Premier's offer. " Ufton, January 8///, 1870. MY DEAR SIR, There is no advantage in prolonging unnecessarily a period of suspense, and it will be even a relief to me, as well as an act of due consideration to yourself, to apprise you of my resolve as soon as formed. I consulted nine of my most valued friends upon the soundness of whose judgment I thought I could rely with reference to this solemn trust you have offered me, and I have yesterday and to-day received answers from them all. Though men of very different views and positions they unite in telling me that I ought not to shrink from the responsibilities even of such a bishopric as Manchester; and encourage me to believe that, with the good hand of my God upon me. I may be found not unequal to its charge. And so, though I cannot quell the throbs iSS LIFE OF BISHOP FRASER. PART n. and misgivings of my own heart, I seem to have no alterna- tive but to accept the trust you are willing to commit to me. It will be my desire, if called upon to administer this great diocese, to do so in a firm and independent, but at the same time generous and sympathising, spirit. I never was, and never could be, a partisan. Even when seeing my way most clearly I am always inclined to give credit to others whose views may be different from my own for equal clearness of vision, certainly for equal honesty of purpose. As little of a dogmatist as it is possible to be, I yet see the use, and indeed the necessity, of dogma ; but I have always wished to narrow, rather than to extend, its field, because the less peremptorily articles of faith are imposed or defined the more hope there is of eliciting agreements rather than differences. Especially have I been anxious to see the Church adapt herself more genially and trustfully to the intellectual aspirations of the age, not standing aloof in a timorous or hostile attitude from the spirit of scientific inquiry, but rather endeavouring (as is her function) to temper its ardour with the spirit of reverence and godly fear. And, finally, my great desire will be, without disguising my own opinions, or wishing one set of minds to understand me in one sense and another k in the opposite, to throw myself on the heart of the whole diocese, of the laity as well as of the clergy, of those who differ from the Church as well as those who conform to her. I have a high ideal of what a bishop of the Church of England ought to be an ideal which for fifteen years of my life it was my happy privilege to see very nearly realised, and though I am never likely to attain to it, I can at least keep it steadily before my eyes and reach after it. If, after this frank statement of what I desire to be, you still think me qualified for the administra- tion of such a diocese, and as the adviser of the Crown to CHAP. i. APPOINTMENT. 189 recommend me to Her Majesty, I shall be prepared, though not without deep anxiety, to undertake the office, and will endeavour, by the help of God, to do my duty. In the event of my promotion the next presentation to the living which I now hold (which is in the patronage of Oriel College) will of course pass to the Crown. I shall be glad to communicate any particulars respecting it which may be desired. I may briefly say here that few livings can unite in themselves greater advantages. With a deep sense of the motives which you say have led you to single me out for this appointment, and a humble hope that I may not disappoint your expectations, " I remain, yours most faithfully, "JAMES FRASER." " Hawarden, January lo/A, 1870. DEAR MR. FRASER, I have received your letter, and read it with sympathy and admiration. Your appointment is settled as far as Her Majesty is concerned, and the steps will now be taken Tr^r the conge tTelire. Should you be in town after the 2oth or 2ist I shall be happy to see you, although the transaction between us as one of mere business is concluded. " Believe me, sincerely yours, "W. E.G." To Mr. Tooke. Uf ton, January lof/i, 1870. "All my friends' advice, I almost regret to say, went one way, and left me no loophole of escape. I, therefore, wrote to Gladstone on Saturday, though still with a heavy heart, CKWV acKovrt ye 6vp. CHAP. II. START IN LANCASHIRE. 199 deacons, and confirming candidates, supplemented by an occasional sermon or speech on strictly Church questions, might well have been enough to satisfy ordinary men, as it had satisfied his predecessor, the first Bishop ; but of this routine work almost no notice can be taken here. Our space will bi all too small for even a compressed narrative of what we may call the Bishop's works of supererogation. It is on these that his fame rests, and his claim to an almost unique place on the roll of great English Churchmen. In the first month after his consecration he laid down at a meeting of the Church Building Society the position of the national Church as he understood it, and the lines upon which it needed to be working : " Our Church must show that in her wide and tolerant bosom every legitimate form of Protestant Christianity can find a home. We are a privi- leged class, secured as no other religious denominations are secured. But why? That we may do a great work for the whole nation. I see already that we want four Church organisations in this diocese ; (i) a society for building churches ; (2) a society which will look into church edu- cation ; (3) a society to provide curates in populous parishes ; (4) a society for the augmentation of small benefices." In passing we may note that on his death, fourteen years later, he left all these thoroughly organised and efficient. The moment of his entrance on public life could not have been more happily chosen, for the great crisis on the edu- cation question had arrived, and the battle was arrayed and raging round the proposals of the Government. Let us first glance at our Bishop's plunge into this fray. It was character- istic of the man never to spend his strength on the outskirts, but to push straight in for the heart of the battle, and when there to wield his mace with entire freedom and fearless- ness, even if soldiers who thought they were on his side 200 LIFE OF BISHOP FRASER. PART n occasionally came in for a back stroke of that doughty weapon. The question of compulsion was at this time the critical one, and Mr. Forster was watching and weighing in his quiet sagacious way, the swaying of the fight, backwards and forwards, all over England. One can well imagine the grim smile which must have lighted up his honest face on reading such reports as those following. A mass meeting in Manchester on the education question was held shortly after the Bishop's consecration, at which he was received with special enthusiasm, in consequence perhaps of a little incident, which he might have planned himself if he had been fishing for popularity amongst his Lancashire people. Striding along one morning on his way to his Registry he became aware of excitement and shouting be- hind him ; and, turning round, saw a tradesman's cart coming rattling down the road without a driver. The boy had got out to deliver a parcel, and the horse had seized the opportunity of making off at a canter for his stable. The Bishop being a man of order, and thoroughly familiar with horses, resented this proceeding, which might prove danger- ous further on in a crowded thoroughfare. So he stepped into the street, made the horse swerve, ran by his side for a few paces, caught the rein, brought horse and cart to a halt, and handed them over to the boy who came up panting. The story of course flew round, and probably accounted for the embarrassing applause with which he was at once received. With the cheers ringing in his ears, he listened to the reading of the report, and then rose to speak, and, after a protest against all excitement on this great question, said : "I want to speak plainly, and if you really disagree I would sooner hear you say ' no, no ' than ' hear, hear.' I heard you applaud the paragraph of the repot t recommending compulsory attendance. This I know, that, if the majority CHAP. II. THE EDUCATION QUESTION. 201 of the English people really want compulsion, the Govern- ment will be only too happy to give it. If it is mere clap- trap sentiment it is worse than useless. I want you work- ing men to lay this question seriously to heart, and see whether you are so alive to the real interests of your children as to submit to a stringent law of compulsion, which will secure them the inestimable blessing of a good, sound education." One other sentence from a later part of the speech must be quoted, when he had passed on to the other burning question of religious education. " I tell you work- ing men, you will find many difficulties in the "brain, but none in the heart. If you will only set your minds on knowing what God will have you to do, God's Spirit will keep you right." Again, a day or two afterwards, at a meeting of the Education Aid Society, he recurred to the subject, and said : "Compulsion represents a power most hateful to English- men, as it involves domiciliary visits from the police, or other official persons. It is said that you working people desire compulsion, and if so the problem is solved. I still hold to the opinion for which I have been, I see, severely taken to task, that a compulsory law, not loyally obeyed but systematically trampled under foot, is about the most demoralizing which a nation can have on its statute book. Unless compulsion is to be thoroughly effective we shall be far better without it." And a little further on, speaking of his own experience as to the wish for education amongst the poor : " When I left my Berkshire parish the other day with only 370 people living in it, how did I leave it in respect of education ? I left it with seventy children in the day school, and an average daily attendance of over sixty. I had twenty-five agricultural clodhoppers, as they are called, coming to me three nights a week ; making themselves 202 LIFE OF BISHOP FRASER. PART n. smart and tidy, and walking perhaps two miles to the school after a hard day's work, following the plough over miry fields. If that is not some proof of zeal for education I don't know what is." From a Sermon in the Cathedral. " Practically if you go about the world and try to find a spot where this religious difficulty exists, it is so microscopic and of such tenuity that I defy any man to put his finger on it and say, Here it is in all its formidable dimensions." On this question of religious education he spoke, at the Free Trade Hall, a few days later. April 20//J, 1870. "I was laying the foundation stone of a new school at Blackburn this morning, and was asked to address 2000 or 3000 mostly working people, who were standing round. I put it quite frankly to them, as I do to you now, whether they had ever come across this miserable proselytising influence which is so freely alleged against denominational schools : and whether they found their children so dutiful and tractable, such models of obedience and every virtue, that they could fairly dispense with religious motives in their training. I asked them whether they wished a purely secular education for their children, and not a voice was raised amongst those 2000 or 3000 people. . . But now we are met by the cry of sectarianism I don't know how old that word is, or when it came into the language, but so far as I know its meaning, it is the name of a thing for which I have as little love as any Englishman. . . I don't know what shape the Government Bill will finally assume when it has passed tbe crucible of parliamentary dis- cussion. I don't envy our legislators who have to fit in the thousand and one amendments into the original text. But CHAP. II. SPEECHES ON EDUCATION. 203 I do hope this, I hope it for the Church of England, and for the diocese of Manchester, that we shall all submit, whether with good grace or not to the national will expressed by our supreme representative assembly. I desire to remember, and wish to remind you, that the interests of the nation are paramount, above the interest of any sect or religious com- munity in the nation. And if we who believe in the vitalizing influence of religion are not allowed by the national legislature to bring that influence to bear in our elementary day schools, we must try to bring it to bear in some other way with less hopes, it may be, but with good heart still." Again, on April 26th, 1870, in the Free Trade Hall, at a meeting of the National Education Union. " The painful fact in the present agitation is, that what is essentially a practical matter, to be determined by common sense and experience, is being discussed on abstract, theoretical grounds ; and has passed into the hands of those who for this purpose are, in my judgment, the worst set of people in the world, the philosophers, doctrinaires, system-framers, who, at least half of them, have never set foot in an ele- mentary school in their lives. From my own experience I tell you that parents prefer that education should be religious. The religious difficulty, as it is called, has been raised, not by them, but for them. . . . Now take for instance the cry against the Catechism. In teaching religion some formulary must of necessity be used ; and if a better or simpler one than the Church Catechism can be found, I am prepared to accept it. It was invidiously said, at a recent meeting of the Education League in this room, that parents don't want (perhaps the speaker meant he didn't want) children taught the Church Catechism and the Athanasian Creed. Who ever heard of the Athanasian Creed beimr taught in an 204 LIFE OF BISHOP FRASER. PART n. elementary school ? But with reference to the Church Cate- chism, I should not be sorry to get rid of that time-honoured but obsolete institution of Godfathers and Godmothers, and therefore I think the first part of the Catechism might be got rid of with little loss. And I do not desire that young children in elementary schools should be perplexed by the appendix to the Catechism, which touches on the mysterious doctrine of the Sacraments. But, putting that aside for a later age, I don't believe that either Baptists, Wesleyans, Congregationalists any more than Church people, would object to have their children taught what was the vow by which they were bound at their baptism ; or the fundamental doctrines of the Christian faith as contained in the Apostles, Creed ; or to learn their duty to their God and their neigh- bour, by being taught that admirable exposition of the prayer of our Blessed Lord." This last address proved too much for the Secular Society, who probably began to think that if they did not make head in some special manner against this outspoken and incom- prehensible Bishop, he would be doing real mischief. They accordingly sent him a challenge to a public discussion, complaining of the terms he had used in speaking of the secularists in his recent addresses. They had mistaken their man, however, if they thought he was to be taken by such a lure. This was his answer : " There is no novelty in the arguments of modern secu- larists. They have been advanced, and to my mind satisfac- torily answered, a hundred times in the course of the his- tory of human thought, and the religion which has survived the attacks of Hume, Voltaire, Tom Paine, will I venture to say outlive those of Mr. A. Holyoake, Mr. C. Watts, and Mr. Bradlaugh. You must not put it down to CHAP. ii. THE SECULARISTS. 205 timidity on my part that I must decline your challenge. I cannot conceive a subject more unfitted for public debate before a miscellaneous and, on such subjects, untrained audience. I have looked into the matter as pro- foundly as my faculties have allowed me for myself. I do not say that all difficulties are cleared away. The revelation in which I believe doesn't lead me to expect that they would be. If in my address at the Free Trade Hall I used language which could justly wound the feelings of any secularists, I deeply regret doing so." 1871. We must pass now from the education question to another which was also a burning one in the Manchester diocese as elsewhere. The Protestant ring in his early sermons and speeches soon encouraged the many foes of ritualism to seek his aid. In January, 1871, a deputation from the congre- gation of St. John Baptist, Hulme, waited on him to com- plain of the ritualistic practices of their rector, who had allowed candlesticks on the altar, processions in church, in which a crucifix and banners were carried, bowing to the altar, and the use of wafer bread. The Bishop had already remonstrated with the rector, who had voluntarily submitted to be guided by him. Mr. Andrew, the churchwarden of the parishioners, opened their grievances, but was cut short by the Bishop with " Mr. Marshall has submitted in the fairest way to anything I order, so I beg you will not press me to order anything unreasonable." The churchwarden then proceeded to complain of postur- ings and genuflexions. The Bishop : " Do you bow to the cross, Mr. Andrew ? " Mr. Andrew : " No." Bishop : " Why then need you trouble about it, if other people think 206 LIFE OF BISHOP FRASER. PART n. it does them good ? You are a stickler it seems for all the rubric orders. Do you kneel when you are saying your prayers ? " Upon this Mr. Nesbitt, the rector's church- warden, interposed with " I never saw him kneel since he came to the church. He sits." Bishop : " That would give offence to some people. That's why I ask you to give and take. I don't like bowing, but if people think it helps them, I can't object to it." Solvuntur risu tabula. After some further skirmishing between the two wings, the deputation retired, and the Bishop was not further troubled from St. John the Baptist's, Hulme, for a period of nearly four years. 1870. At the Church Institute, Oldham. April, 1870. " Libera- tionists say we owe our creed to an act of Parliament. The origin of our creed, the Apostles', is lost in antiquity. The Nicene creed came from the Council of Nice long before the English Parliament was born or thought of. That the prayer book was scheduled to an act of Parliament is a guarantee for the liberty and fixity of our faith. We don't want to be shifted about by every ebb and flow of popular opinion. Why is it possible to caricature Christianity? Because our Christianity is so far below the point to which it ought to rise, because there is so much unreality, hypo- crisy, cant in it. I think I may defy any one to caricature the life, or work, or character of our Lord ; or to caricature St. Paul, or to read St. John's Epistle and try to caricature that." Manchester City Mission, annual meeting, May i5th, 1870, at which he had consented to preside, to the con- sternation of Manchester orthodoxy : " Since I consented to take the chair I have had many representations that I CHAP. II. THE LICENSING QUESTION. 207 should be in my wrong place as a Bishop, this being a 'sectarian institution.' If I believed that, I shouldn't be here. But this Mission Society seems to me by what I have read of their publications, and by the report, to be loyal to the principles we all profess. The feeling deepens in me every day that these principles of Christ's gospel are few, simple, broad. Christians have been wrangling over their petty shibboleths, and have let the devil get an advantage over them, while they piled arms to discuss petty questions of theology, and, instead of presenting a serried front, turned their arms against each other, as the poor French are doing." But perhaps the most characteristic of all his early utter- ances was at what is described in the reports as " a stormy meeting" on the question of licensing public houses on April 9th, which he attended at the request of the Temper- ance League. One can picture the consternation of his friends not unlike that of the Princes of Moab on Mount Peor when the Bishop suddenly broke out in the middle of his speech with, "Yesterday I preached in a very full church. My voice was a little out of order, and I was a little exhausted. At lunch the clergyman said, ' I think a glass of bitter beer after that sermon would do you good. 1 I thought so too, and I drank the bitter beer, and felt the better for it. So you see I'm not one of those who as the old ditty runs ' would rob a poor man of his beer ' provided it is good and wholesome, and he knows when he has had enough. You might as well try to sweep away all your town-halls, or co-operative stores, as all your public-houses." At a Meeting to consider proposals for reform of the Grammar School. " Hugh Oldham, if he could rise from his grave, would wish his foundation to be used for the 2o8 LIFE OF BISHOP FRASER. PART n. utmost possible good of the people of Manchester. There- fore the ' Cy-pres ' rule ought to be applied in this case freely. I have seen what comes of holding strictly to the terms of a founder's will in my old neighbourhood. Before the reform of the Reading Free School, in 1865, there was only one pupil left in it, and he was a French boy." Dec. 2&t/t t 1870. At a meeting of the Church Missionary Society at Ashton-under-Lyne. " I never feel more lost than when I am in the chair or speaking at a missionary meeting, because all my knowledge is derived from books and reports. My difficulty is not from lack of interest in the cause, but simply from a sense of unreality, which I suppose every one must feel when he has to speak on a difficult question on which he has no personal experience. So my remarks to-night will be very few and general." Amongst these one may profitably cite the following: " Haven't these poor heathens thousands of miles away a special claim on you Lancashire people ? Since I have been here I have visited several large mills weaving calico for India. You are doing them a good turn perhaps in sending them cheap calico, but at the same time you are doing yourselves a good turn. Now, I want to know if cheap calico is all you can put into their hands? Now, don't you think you should try to improve them in other respects besides clothing ? Can't you try to help them clothe themselves with Christ's righteousness as well as cheap Lancashire calico ? I say then that India ought to have a special interest and claim on you." 1871. Jan. 5///, 1871. At a meeting of the Boys' Refuge, and Industrial Brigade. " This is one of the most difficult and CHAP. ii. THE ACT OF UNIFORMITY. 209 delicate problems of modern society. How can your work be done without encouraging professional vagrancy or inter- fering with the rightful duty of parents? It was said by Archbishop Whately, a strict political economist, but at heart a very benevolent man, that he had given away 40,0007. in charities, but never a sixpence to a street beggar. On the other hand there was a gentleman whose mortal remains are being lowered about this very moment into their last resting place, who played no unconspicuous or inconsistent part in the public life of Manchester, of whom it was stated in biographical notices I have been reading of him, that no beggar ever asked of him for aid and went away unrelieved. These men may seem inconsistent the one with the other, but we are not living in Utopia but in England, where we must all allow there is far too abundant room for the practical development of all benevolent sentiments. Till these great subjects are taken up with a broader spirit, and firmer grasp, I don't know how we can help ' tinkering ' with questions which need a more prompt and decided treatment. I confess I should be glad to see the day, when our legislature, instead of fighting the battles of political parties, shall really gird up its loins to ascertain what practical solution can be given to the infinite and diversified social problems which meet any one who walks about the streets of such a city as Manchester." Jan. gth, 1871. As chairman of a meeting of the Society for the aid of the Deaf and Dumb. " I have had the greatest possible satisfaction in admitting Mr. Downing the superin- tendent of the Society to Deacons' orders. I got over Archbishop Laud's rule ' that no man was to be ordained a Deacon unless he had a specific nomination and title,' by Mr. Bardsley's help, who has nominated him assistant curate p 210 LIFE OF BISHOP FRASER. PART n. of St. Ann's, while I have given him a sort of roving cure, to attend to the spiritual wants of all the deaf and dumb poor he can find in the district." Jan. i<)th, 1871. " I think there is a general sense of dis- comfort to use the mildest term in the minds of Church- men under the Act of Uniformity. What we want is to enable our clergy to go forth with the Bible and Prayer Book in their hands, and use them as they find best for the edifi- cation of those they are seeking to serve." He accepted the post of President of the Manchester Savings Bank for 1871, and in his opening speech from the chair said, "With me social questions have always taken rank, not only far above political but even far above ecclesiastical questions. By this remember I mean for I don't wish to be misunderstood that without relaxing my hold on what I believe to be the great truths of Christianity, I still feel that the great function of Christianity is to elevate man in his social condition. Therefore I think my business as a Bishop is to do all I can to diffuse its great principles for the guidance of human conduct, by example and precept, taking my chance whether my own Communion gains or loses thereby. I care little for the dominance of this or that ecclesiastical party, my prayer for all who try to hold and spread the truth being that they may prosper as they deserve. I think an institution like the Savings Bank is animated by a Christian spirit, embodies a Christian principle, and ought to command the sympathy of every Christian man;" and then proceeding to comment on Mr. Gladstone's proposal in his budget speech to reduce the rate of interest in Savings Banks " I am but a young and inexperienced legis- lator, and in the present fluctuating state of public opinion don't know how long I may remain a legislator at all, so at CHAP. II. ADDRESS TO WORKING MEN. 211 present I don't see my way to doing more for you than attend a deputation. Excellent as our Chancellor of the Exchequer is in lucid statement and exposition, I must say that in a good many matters he seems to me rather sharp in his practice. I presume that the motive for reducing the rate of interest is to bring the old established Savings Banks down to the level of Government Savings Banks. But it seems to me there ought to be no competition between them ; each has a distinct reason for its existence and a distinct position to occupy. The Post-Office Banks are for our migratory population who want to move their invest- ments from Manchester to Liverpool or London, as their occupation carries them. On the other hand the old banks are for our stationary people, and I confess in the interests of society I think the stationary people are the branch of our fellow citizens that ought to be encouraged, and there- fore if by a small premium of 10 per cent, we can give an advantage to the stationary over the locomotive population it should be done. I haven't been here long enough to pay minute attention to the state of things here, but my experi- ence in life tells me we are all living too fast. We don't leave margin enough between income and expenditure. I take this institution to be a visible witness in a great commercial community of the value of thrift, and am not only gratified but proud, to be elected its President." Address tj Working Men, Trinity Church, Salford. " I am glad to see you here to-night just as you have left your mills and workshops. I regret bitterly that churches, not only in Manchester but all over England, and I fear chapels also, are too much in the possession of the well-dressed, the comfortable, and the well-to-do." . . "If you will take a little more pains to ask God to give you grace to get rid of p 2 212 LIFE OF BISHOP FRASER. PART n. lust, intemperance, all that keeps you down, I am sure there is no country in the world (and I have seen many) in which the honest, sober, industrious, thrifty workman has so good a chance of raising himself to a position of independence as in England." 1870. These specimens of the Bishop's utterances during the first year of his episcopate may be closed by the following speech on the occasion of laying the foundation-stone of Owens College on Sept. 24th, 1870, when he responded to the toast "the Clergy of all denominations." The founder (in 1845) had made a condition of his gift that "nothing should be mentioned in the matter or modes of education or instruction in reference to any religious or theological subject, which should be reasonably offensive to the conscience of any student, or of his relations or friends ; " and, being unable to put any working construction on these words, the governing body had cut the knot by excluding all religious instruction from their curriculum. " There might have been a time," he said, " and not so long ago, when a Bishop would have felt uncomfortable in being called upon to respond to this toast in this company, but I do not think now there is any man on the Bench of Bishops who would feel so, and if there is I am not that man. I do not claim to be more liberal than my neighbours there is nothing more distasteful to me than quasi-liberality. But I claim this, that I love my fellow-men, and further that I take a large and broad view of what is understood by ' truth.' I believe that every man who is earnestly trying to spread the truth which he knows, is labouring in the cause of Him who is first of all a God of holiness, but secondly (if it can be called second) a God of truth. I never have believed that true science can be contrary to true religion, CHAP. II. A NEW CRUSADE. 213 or that true religion ought to be afraid of any of the legitimate conclusions of science. I know that I am in the presence of men who have established their right to be interpreters of the laws and phenomena of the material world. I read their speculations with the deepest interest, with much more interest than they would bestow on any speculations of mine. I can listen with interest while a learned professor speculates whether we who live in Man- chester are deteriorated angels or developed savages. I only ask to be their fellow-worker in building up the great temple of truth. But I would ask them whether these material or intellectual theories can solve the moral and spiritual phenomena by which they are surrounded, and whether there is not a place for poor parsons as well as for philosophers ? If they would only believe that parsons are not sceptics in disguise, trying to palm off on the world something that has failed ; that they are trying calmly, and step by step, to tread the path of truth ; I can hope that the disputed boundaries between religion and science may be settled, so that we may both alike minister in and help to build up the great temple of truth." Later in the evening Professor Huxley in replying to the toast of the President of the British Association said, " I shall not soon forget the spirit-stirring speech of the noble prelate, a speech I welcome and shall remember as long as I live, as imbued with a spirit, which, if it had always been exhibited, would have prevented the difficulties and mis- understandings which I myself deprecate." It was not only by his absolute frankness and fearlessness of speech that the Bishop startled his great diocese in these first months of his episcopate. His work more than kept pace with his talk. Besides carefully overhauling, and inspiring with new life and energy, the excellent Church 214 LIFE OF BISHOP FRASER. PART n. machinery which he found ready to his hand, establishing in addition a Diocesan Board of Education, and enlarging and inspiring with new life the Diocesan Church Building Society, he undertook a new crusade of a kind, and in quarters, which had been hitherto quite neglected. It took him only a few weeks to make up his mind that the Church in Lancashire, if she was ever to fulfil her mission as he understood it, must take quite new ground with the two most numerous sections of the people, the factory operatives and skilled mechanics, and the mass of unskilled labour and destitution below, which is commonly known as " the residuum." Accordingly, always with the consent, and generally with the hearty approval, of the great employers of labour, whom he approached through the local clergy, he attended at such establishments as the St. John's Car- riage Works, the Atlas Iron Works, and the Gorton Railway Works in the dinner hour, and gave addresses, prefaced by two or three collects and the Lord's Prayer, to such of the mechanics and labourers as chose to attend. In the same way, and for like purposes, he gathered the boatmen on the canals, the scavengers, and the night-soil men, in any suitable room which could be borrowed or hired in the neighbourhood of their work. Further on we shall meet with samples of the topics he selected, and his method of handling them before such audiences. In the present somewhat unwieldy chapter room must still be found for some short notice of how this strange phenomenon of a Bishop striding about his diocese on foot, carrying his own blue bag containing his robes, stopping runaway carts, and talking familiarly with every one he met, gentle or simple, with a cheerful and healthy curiosity as to all they were thinking about or interested in struck the Lancashire folk. CHAP. II. THE CLASSES. 215 The factory hands, and working people generally, were taken as it were by storm, and had installed him long before the end of the year in a place in their hearts which he never lost. The following, which could be multiplied to any extent, may be taken as fair instances of their attitude. A sturdy dis- senting operative waited for him at the bottom of the stairs after one of his earliest meetings, and seized him by the hand with the remark, "Ah, Bishop, thou'dst mak' a foine Methody preacher." Another, waiting for him outside church after a charity sermon, forced a sovereign into his hand with, " Bishop, here's a pound for thee." Bishop : "Thanks, my friend ; for the charity ? " Operative : " Nay, nay, for thyself. " "The classes," as represented by the press, were by no means so unanimous, as indeed how should they be, scarcely a day passing in which he did not run sharply counter to some of their cherished beliefs or prejudices. Nevertheless, they were all eager to hear whatever he had to say ; and so he proved a perfect Godsend to the local papers, as their subscribers seemed to be never tired of reading about him. Reporters from all the leading papers followed him about mercilessly, reporting all he said verbatim; and editors, while ruthlessly printing it, would have been more than human if they had not taken revenge now and then by more or less sarcastic comment for such a crowding of their space. After the first chorus of applause, which may be summed up in the words, " If not a Manchester man he is the man for Manchester," " He is the most candid public man we have ever had in Lancashire," came uncertain notes, " He may be candid enough, but he always has the gloves on. He is always giving somebody a good dressing." " You never saw a man with that coloured hair and complexion who wasn't hot-tempered," wrote another. A third struck in, " He is like a chestnut horse, and never wants whip or spur. 216 LIFE OF BISHOP FRASER. PART 1 1. He seems to enjoy as a luxury bursting the trammels which should hedge a Bishop." " lie is anyhow," wrote a fourth, " a man of real genius, the genius of common-sense." Then after a month or two began the chorus of reaction. " His forte," wrote one facetious scribe, " is omnipresence, his foible omniscience." "At any rate," laughed the Bishop, " if omnipresence is my forte it is the fault of Lancashire, which drags me about to many more places than I want to go to." Another broke out, " It is no uncommon thing to find him within the space of twenty-four hours speaking half- a-dozen times in as many different places ; and ranging, apart from a somewhat scanty theology, over a field embrac- ing such subjects as the evils of drunkenness, the statistics of crime, mischievous agitators, working hours, church col- lections, the evils of ignorance, young men's means of saving money, the effects of the licensing Act, and costly funerals. This is no exaggeration." Of all of which the Bishop took little heed, or replied now and then with a laugh ; as for instance, in a speech as chair- man of a meeting of the Education Aid Society in his first autumn, " The newspapers tell you, I see, that the Bishop of Manchester is beginning to be a bore; that his name comes before the public oftener than any one wants to see it. I should be very glad if these gentlemen would help me to decline invitations, or at any rate wouldn't report me. The fact is I never have a Sunday, or half a Sunday, to myself. But I do feel that when a clergyman comes to me and says he is labouring in a poor parish with a heavy balance against him, and that if I will go and preach it will be worth 307. or 4O/. to him, I can only answer, ' If I am disengaged, I'll go.' " And so the editors kept on reporting him, and as a rule ceased to scoff. Those gentlemen are keen persons, and not apt to waste the lash where it only draws chaff instead of blood. CHAPTER III. " He thought the less men's consciences were entangled, and the less the communion of the Church was clogged with disputable opinions or practices, the world would be the happier, consciences the freer, and the Church the quieter." ARCHBISHOP TILLOTSO.N, Preface to Sermons, 1693- MANCHESTER : EXTRA DIOCESAN WORK : HOUSE OF LORDS : CONVOCATION. 1 870 1 87 I. 1870. BEFORE turning to some of his extra-Diocesan utterances, we must linger for a moment or two on the somewhat path- etic side of his transition from private to public life. Up to this time no man had ever been more diligent in preserving the threads of his early life unbroken, and few have had more threads to preserve. His punctuality in keeping up correspondence with his relations, and old school and college friends, was simply amazing : and the friends of his man- hood had been equally well treated. For instance, his correspondence with Mr. Mozley, whom he succeeded at Cholderton, never flagged for twenty years. (It has been preserved, by the way, almost intact, and few editors can have had more genuine pleasure than I have had in reading it through more than once.) The same may be said of that with Mr. Tooke, Canon Norris, and others, though begun much later in life. 2i3 LIFE OF BISHOP FRASER. PART II. All this was now at an end. It was vain to struggle against the inevitable. The enormous correspondence of his diocese the greater part of it entirely unnecessary and often silly which he patiently kept down day by day, with- out the aid of a secretary, made it simply out of the question to attempt the maintenance of his old habits. His private correspondence fell at once into arrears, and became inter- mittent and irregular. In this he had to acquiesce, not without occasional repining. Thus to Mr. Mozley he writes : 1871. Manchester, January io//i, 1871. "I am utterly ashamed of myself for never having yet answered your kind letter from Rome, in which you congratulated me on my elevation to the bishopric of Manchester. My simple, and I hope my sufficient excuse is, that really my necessary correspond- ence has been so enormous, that letters which could be written at any time have been postponed again and again, till month after month has slipped away. I am terribly afraid that one of the worst consequences of my new position will be, that I shall lose the intercourse, one after another, with my best and dearest friends. I have wished myself a. thousand times back at my quiet parsonage at Ufton, and that some one else had been sent to govern this great and difficult diocese of Manchester. " Nothing can be more interesting than the work, nothing kinder or more enc'ouraging than the people, but the dignity of the situation is quite alien from all my tastes, and the work is above my strength. But here I am, and I must try to do my best. I dare say I shall make lots of mistakes, but I think also I have some friends, and the people appraise what work I am able to do, even at more than it is worth ; CHAP. in. DEATH OF MEACHER. 219 and if I could only feel myself more equal to what is re- quired of me I should be less discontented than I am. If, after such treatment as you have already received, you will ever write to me again I should like to hear something of how you have settled down in your new home, how you like Devonshire and its peasants, how the Bishop gets on (I see he was nearly burnt in his lawn sleeves), &c., &c. I dare say that Mrs. Mozley and you together have made the house very nice, and I suppose you have by this time got some habitable rooms on the ground floor. Poor old Meacher died November i4th, at Littlemore Asylum, and was buried in the churchyard there. His mind was quite gone, and his death cannot be considered other than a happy release. I am not occupying the episcopal residence " [Mauldeth Hall]. " It is quite unsuitable in more ways than one, and in the hope of selling it I have rented a parsonage house in Manchester for two years from March 25th last. But I have had no offers yet, and times are not very prosperous. My mother and aunt are living with me." To Mr. Tooke. Sept. 1871. "I don't much like my work as Bishop. Happily I never sought it, or I should reproach myself; but having seen what a bishop should be in Bishop Hamilton, I feel myself so far below that level that I am ashamed of my own unworthiness. Nothing, to be sure, can exceed the kindness of the Lancashire people towards me ; and though of course I make many mistakes, and no doubt say things with which even old friends like yourself cannot agree, I hope that on the whole I have their confidence and good opinion." To the Rev.J. Sale. November 2^/1, 187 1. " Do, for old friendship's sake, drop the ' Lord ' out of your mode ot 220 LIFE OF BISHOP FRASER. PART n. addressing me, and simply call me ' Dear Bishop.' I wish to think and to be reminded of the lordly part of my title as little as possible. I have quite given up horse exercise here, I have no time, and there is no motive. The roads are all paved, and a strip of turf is nowhere to be found. Oh, how gladly I would return to my old bucolic life if duty allowed me ! Happily I did not come here of my own choice ; and if God sent me He will give me strength and wisdom for the work, but when a few years are gone, if my life is spared, I shall hand over the office to a younger and a better man." And a little further on : "I am quite ashamed of the way in which under the pressure of new duties, old friends fall, I will not say out of remembrance, but out of the ranks of correspondents. I hardly ever can find time for those letters which still hold together ancient friendships even when personal intercourse has become impossible." 1872. To the Same. Manchester, January 22nd, 1872. " I fear I shall fall into disgrace with all my friends, for I find it almost impossible to keep up as I should wish to do my private correspondence. Oh, Sale, I would give half I pos- sess to be back again in my quiet country parsonage ! I can't think how I let my friends persuade me that I was fit to be a Bishop. I don't say that I am unhappy, but I am dissatisfied with myself; the work is above my power, and I feel myself not half good or holy enough for such an office as I have to fill. I am going to London on Wednesday to attend the first meeting of the governing body of Shrewsbury School ; and then I go to Coventry to preach a sermon ; and then to Oxford for Sunday; and then to Chester to preach one of the opening sermons at the cathedral ; and CHAP. ill. BACK IN BERKSHIRE. 221 then on the 3olh home again. That is a sample of the world I am obliged to live in. Just contrast that with my former quietude." Thus after upwards of a year's experience he is still by no means reconciled, and the longing for country and quiet, and work of which he could feel himself master, was often forcing itself up. Here is the first gleam of genuine enjoyment of the old kind. He is on a short holiday, and back for the first time in his old Berkshire home : 1871. To Mr. Mozhy. Sul/iamstead, Reading, September 26th, 1871. "I preached twice yesterday at Ufton to crowded congregations. I should think I spoke to and shook hands with every man, woman, and child in Ufton. Annie Dimant had gone back the night before, and played the organ. The school children mustered in good force and seemed in nice order. The Rectory and grounds looked well, but hardly in such good order to my eyes as it was in my time, and the meadows were very full of weeds. The churchyard also has not been much cared for." And now, turning again to his public life, perhaps the most noteworthy point in it is the thoroughness and simplicity which he threw still into every act and word. It never would seem to have crossed his mind that the Bishop of Manchester must take more heed to his ways, be more cautious, reticent, circumspect, than the Rector of Ufton. He had always spoken his exact mind up to now, and meant to do it to the end. Thus on his first appearance in Con- vocation he at once showed his quality in that body in the 222 LIFE OF BISriOP FRASER. PART n. most unequivocal, but not wholly acceptable, manner. On a motion of his friend, Dean Hovvson, for the disuse of the Athanasian Creed in the Church services, he warmly sup- ported him. The speech is so thoroughly characteristic that I give it almost at length. He said : " The Creed may be ancient may be authentic may be true may be proved by most certain warrants of Holy Scripture, and yet may be unsuitable for use in the public service of the Church. ''To prove its suitableness for the instruction of the ignorant and unlearned, certain verses of it are selected, which, it is maintained, the youngest children in our schools can take in and accept. But these same verses produce an effect upon the mind when they are taken out from their setting in the document quite different from that which they produce when taken in connection with a number of other propositions, which every one must allow to be simply unin- telligible to the ignorant and unlearned. Taken as a whole, I can hardly conceive any one considering this Creed as ministering to the instruction and edification of the poor, or of the unlearned. It is certain that it is not so regarded in the Church of Rome, for it is only used by them at the ser- vice of prime, which is almost exclusively a service for the clergy. "And if, as the Bishop of Peterborough said in the Southern Convocation, ' words mean nothing more and nothing less than what logic and grammar make them mean,' I believe that the Archbishop of Canterbury said neither more nor less than the truth when he expressed the opinion that nobody in the Church of England takes the monitory clauses in their plain and literal sense ; because that plain literal sense is that whoever does not hold the Catholic faith CHAP. ill. FIRST SPEECH IN CONVOCATION. 223 as set forth in the dogmatic statements of the Athanasian Creed, without doubt shall perish everlastingly. If Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob, are to sit down in the kingdom of God, some who have never been able to comprehend the length, and height, and breadth and depth, of this formulary, may possibly sit down there too ! " Is it pretended that the Athanasian Creed is rj a.ira.% Trapa8o6eL(ra rots dyt'ois 7rurris, of which St. Jude speaks ? or that Gospel which Paul preached to the Corinthians, which they had received, and by which also they were saved, un- less they had believed in vain ? a Creed of uncertain date, doubtful authorship, precarious interpretation, not publicly used as \ve use it in any other Church in Christendom, which has never received the sanction of an (Ecumenical Council. "There is a clause in the Creed declaring 'every Person by himself to be God and Lord,' which does not seem to be much modified in the proposed new translation ' every Person severally is God and Lord,' which Canon Liddon himself admits can only be received ' with considerable intel- lectual caution.' Indeed, all through this part of the Creed, one is trying to steady one's mind to keep to that narrow line which separates what the Church has condemned as Sabellianism on the one hand, from Tritheism on the other. When a Creed contains doctrine of such subtle intricacy, and matters which even theologically educated minds are warned to receive with caution, I cannot think, with the speaker who immediately preceded me, that it is a document as a whole for recitation in mixed congregations. In fact, this Creed illustrates in a remarkable way the manner in which the wit of man, aiming at a noble end, trying to pierce the cloud of darkness in which we feel we are enveloped, and through which we naturally desire to' grope our way to 224 LIFE OF BISHOP ERASER. PART II. higher, and further, and clearer truth this Creed, I say, illustrates in a remarkable way the manner in which the wit of men has endeavoured to give, out of its own resources, a definiteness beyond what is given in Holy Scripture to religious ideas, by putting them into theological terms. " For thirteen years of my ministerial life I had charge of a rural parish of 200 souls. The one intelligent man in my congregation was the squire. Whenever I stood up to recite the Athanasian Creed in his presence he did what Archdeacon Churton has told us George III. used to do he sat down at once, closing his prayer-book with an angry slam. And the pain this used to give me was poorly com- pensated by hearing the clerk, and some fifty or sixty agricultural labourers, reciting their alternate verses, from which, I doubt if they received as much edification as they would have done from the more familiar language of the Apostles' Creed. " The amendment which has been moved by an old and valued friend of mine, with whom it was once my great advantage to be associated in the discipline and instruction of the same college in Oxford " [Rev. C. P. Eden], " pleads for delay. Though of a somewhat impetuous nature, I do feel that in solemn matters like this, we must not risk the perils of precipitancy. I should be very glad if his Grace the Archbishop, amid his multifarious engagements, could find us a little more time to discuss the weighty and serious problems that lie before us. But in this particular instance, I do not see what is to be gained by delay. The Church of England has been belated more than once in her eccle- siastical history. She has done things, and attempted to do them, when the time for doing them wisely and well had passed away. I can see nothing that can be gained by delay but an increase of strife. I can hardly believe that there CHAP. in. UNIVERSITY TESTS BILL. 225 will be any one in the Church of England I was going to say, so disloyal, I will say, so unwise, as to forsake the com- munion of his Baptism, it might be the communion of his Ordination, because the Church in the exercise of a wise discretion, while still recognising the value of the Athanasian Creed as a document of her faith, declined any longer to disturb thinking minds, or weak consciences, by making its use compulsory in her public service." The speech was salutary, but did not prevail. The motion was carried in the Upper House, but lost in the Lower. Equally characteristic was his maiden speech in the House of Lords, of which a few sentences must suffice here. 1872. On the University Tests Bill, May io///, 1872. " We are living in an age when it is not wise to tie the tongue of any teacher on any subject. I believe the truth of Christianity will stand examination. I have no fear for Christianity, but the greatest fear for the interests of religion if subjected to these objectionable tests. I venture to think that our colleges will be very much improved by the admission of Nonconformists ; and that such admission will be a gain to the nation, to the Nonconformists, and to the Church of England, which has suffered by the exclusive possession of these privileges and prerogatives. I do not believe the Nonconformist will be one whit behind the most earnest members of the Church in making the colleges places of sound education and religion." These deliverances, so direct, so unexpected, so un- compromising ; while they delighted and put heart into many who were losing hope of ever seeing a Bishop who could understand and speak out their minds, greatly scan- Q 226 LIFE OF BISHOP FRASER. PART n. dalized orthodox Churchmen generally, and in particular a number of his old Oxford friends. While Dean Stanley broke out into the delighted exclamation, " Well ! you do verge on the imprudent more than any man I know ! " others, and notably Mr. Burgon (formerly a fellow of Oriel, but now a Dean), fell upon him in the press with an insolent assumption of superiority and a loss of temper, which would have roused most men to angry retort. But neither disturbed his equanimity, nor drew from him a word of reply. He went on his way, giving out constantly, and without stint, the best that was in him. This was the business, as he understood it, of a Father in the Church. It was not his business to make things pleasant, or conceal any of his own convictions. " I hope," as he wrote to Sale, " I shall be always straightforward." 1871. Speech at Annual Meeting of the Sanitary Association, May, 1871. "There are four requisites to healthy, decent life which every Englishman should be able to command in our times good food, wholesome air, pure water, com- plete drainage. The foremost heathen nations seem to have understood their duty in these matters better than we do, even now. The main hindrance to my mind to the work of this excellent association is likely to be crotchets. You do not seem sufficiently inclined to believe in experts fcr this work. 'Cuique in sua arte credendum/ is my motto. Don't go in for crotchets, is my advice. I have had very striking experience in these matters. My first country living was near Salisbury, to which my duty often called me, and I knew it well. It was a city of 14,000 inhabitants, and was at that time almost the most unhealthy of any English city. Now I see by the last official returns CHAP. in. THE LIBERAL CLERGY. 227 it is all but at the top of the list. This shows what may be done by wise sanitary measures. . . . Since I have been a Vice-President I have been deluged with pamphlets on the Contagious Diseases Act. For the present I must reserve my judgment on the whole subject, as I have not been able to come to any definite conclusion. This how- ever I am quite sure of, that the moral and physical questions should be kept quite distinct." 1871. Sermon in Westminster Abbey, July, 1871. "To live on the verge of mystery is the very condition of our human life. If the phenomena of natural life are most mysterious, what must be the case as to spiritual life ? No revelation can be asked to unveil more than it is necessary for man to know. This Christianity does for the spiritual life. The readiest and best explanation of the whole mystery is, that a loving God is restoring the creation by His Son and His Spirit. We have lost the note of unity, but we need not lose the note of love. That one strong cable is enough. Without it there must be the unstable mind, the dragging anchor which wrecks faith, and is as bad for souls as for ships. The true attitude of man's will is humility." Dean Stanley, and all the Liberal clergy of London, Mr. Llewelyn Davies, S. Hansard, and others, were always on the look-out for him on the occasions of his rare attendances at the House of Lords, so that even when in London he got little rest on Sundays. As to that assembly, "when I go to the House," he said jokingly, " I always feel as if the officials kept an eye on me lest I should be come for some of the coats. If it were not for my apron and knee breeches I believe they would beckon for the police." Q 2 228 LIFE OF BISHOP FRASER. PART n. 1870. Prize Day at Rossall School, June, 1870. This gathering consisted mainly of Lancashire manufacturers and business men. " Listen to me ! Don't put your boys to business till you have given them a thorough, sound, liberal education. This is made up of three elements, povo-iK-r), ypafifiariK^, yvpvafrriKri, as the wise old heathens taught ; and that old system which England has adopted in her old Universities and schools has produced, and will continue to produce the best specimens of men and citizens. I am bound perhaps, however, to admit that of late the yvfivaa-nK-rj has been a little overdone." Consecration of Bacup Cemetery, August, 1870. At the consecration service in the morning the Bishop had said, "St. Paul calls the resurrection of the body a great mystery, and I hope you won't ask or expect me to explain it ... but the only thing which will keep you from the resurrection of the body, whatever that may be, will be obstinacy, hardness of heart, continuance in the devil's ways." At the dinner which followed, the chairman in proposing his health admitted that he had been watching him now for six months, and thought they had got the right man in the right place. In reply the Bishop said, he knew that most of those present were not of his communion, but by the constitution of his mind he couldn't be a partisan. He was something of a Laodicean, and admitted (as he had been warned in the papers) that impatience was his danger. However, anyhow he was glad to work with all of them whenever he could, though he felt that his system was much better than theirs. At a great Sunday School Demonstration in the Corpora- tion Park at Blackburn, at which 16,000 children and their CHAP. in. WORKING MEN'S MISSION. 229 teachers were present. "Our National Church cannot afford to be the church of the privileged classes. It must be by its constitution the Church of the whole people, tolerant, catholic, evangelical, comprehensive, conciliatory .... I am surprised myself to find the loyalty to the National Church in this diocese and great county of Lancashire. In fifty years some of you children may remember my words, and I tell you that then you will be living in a country more happy, better educated, more civilised, more united, and more religious, than we are who are now treading this English soil." It is time to pass on from this first year, to which more space has been given than can be spared to any of those which follow. The chapter may close with two more abbreviated speeches, and a note from his old schoolfellow Lord Lingen. June, 1870. At a meeting of the " Working Men's Evan- gelistic Mission," to raise funds for building a tabernacle, he said he was aware that he was not standing on a Church platform, but if he thought the dissenting platform more solid and broader than that of the Church he should be a Dissenter and not a Churchman. . . . This he understood to be a special effort to meet a Society for the Propagation of Anti-Christian Atheism which had been established amongst them. The powers of evil were being arrayed more actively than ever, and he could wish Godspeed, and give all the help in his power, to any effort which seemed like to extend or strengthen his Master's Kingdom. He must give them one warning, however. As he understood it, the congregation which would gather in this tabernacle was to be what he might call a transitional one. It was meant for birds of passage, not for a local congregation. 230 LIFE OF BISHOP FRASER. PART n. This was well. But he must warn them not to drift into any attempt to found a new sect. That they must avoid as a rock on which they might strike, and probably founder. For himself, he rejoiced to be there. In two months he had already confirmed upwards of 4,000 young folk, but they were almost all of what were called the respectable classes. The Church ought not to be content with that." July, 1870. At a meeting of The Evening Visitors Society " He always felt most satisfaction when working on his old lines as a country parson teaching boys to love God and their schoolfellows going from cottage to cottage and hearing simple tales of sorrow and suffering. This was their work, and he said now again, as he had said before, it ought to be organised. He saw in the papers, ' Oh, the Bishop wants a convent or a monastery.' That was, he sup- posed, because he had said that the Roman Catholic methods were better for great towns than those of our Church ; and he thought so still. The Bishop ought to be the chief minister in a diocese like this, with a special staff which he could send about where they were most wanted. He him- self ought to have at least half a do/en church houses, with three clergy in each of them, for such work as this. An idea of this kind had been slumbering in his mind these fourteen years, and he should like to see his way to making it a reality." 1871. " If ever there was a sociable and sympathetic man he was one," Lord Lingen, his old friend, writes in reference to this period, " pleasantly inquisitive and ready to talk to any one. I remember the night when the great repository in Belgravia was burnt down, he and I had walked across Hyde Park to my house, and, having seen there was a great fire in that direction had started after dinner to look for it. CHAP. in. BISHOP OF ALL DENOMINATIONS. 231 Fraser said to a casual bystander, ' There is a great deal of property being destroyed, how much do you think it is worth ? ' The man answered, ' About five millions I should say.' Whereupon Fraser said, in the gentlest way, 'Oh, hardly so much as that,' and proceeded to state why he thought the estimate excessive. I can quite understand how his heart, always showing itself good in contact, how- ever slight, with his fellowmen, won for him that character in his diocese which made the Manchester people, with the truest instinct, desire to have a statue of him out of doors. in some place of public resort. His readiness to talk to every one always reminded me of what Thirlwall says of Socrates, ' He became one of the most conspicuous and notorious persons at Athens. There perhaps was hardly a mechanic who had not, at some time or other, been puzzled or diverted by his questions.' " After reading the above extracts from, and condensations of, his utterances in this first year, which could be easily multiplied tenfold, readers will probably have no difficulty in understanding how it came to pass that by the end of that time he had already earned the title of " the Bishop of all Denominations." As this chapter commenced, so it may well end, with words spoken of the great Archbishop of the seventeenth century, which might well have been written of Bishop Fraser : " A decent but grave cheerfulness, made his con- versation as lively and agreeable as it was useful and in- structing. He was ever in good humour : always the same ; both accessible and affable. He heard everything patiently ; was apt neither to mistake nor suspect; his own great candour disposing him to put the best construction, and to judge most favourably of all persons and things." CHAPTER IV. " If any existing society or church is to be the nucleus of a new system it can only be by the sloughing off much that is old. But I hope this will be done rather by the impulse of new life from within than by any wrench from without. The quantity of inwardness, faithfulness, and power which has come before me in my own generation, cannot, I think, pass away without helping towards some great outward revolution." J. STERLING to JULIUS HARE, Life, p. 79. MANCHESTER, 1871 1875. 1871. THE next years of his episcopate must be passed over rapidly. It will be only possible to indicate generally the lines on which he carried out the work he had laid down for himself, which will be best done by short extracts from speeches and letters, with the least possible comment. It is within the mark to say that, except in the short holidays he allowed himself, and the very rare occasions on which he was kept at home by illness, scarcely a day passed in which he did not do some public work. Most men whose sense of duty might compel them to live such a life in which evenings were nearly as much occupied as the day would have fallen into mere mechanical drudges, doggedly getting through their daily tale of talk, consultation, ad- monition, encouragement, but losing their hold day by day on current politics and literature, and on all social questions outside their routine work. Nothing of the kind happened to him. The order and method which had become a CHAP. iv. A RECOGNISED LEADER. 233 second nature to him, helped him here ; and, either in his odds and ends of time at home, or in his journeys about his diocese, when he always carried some book he wanted to read, he managed to keep abreast of the best thought and literature of his time. " Man's first word is Yes ; his second No ; his third and last, Yes ; and while the bulk of men stop short at the first, very few attain to the third," says Julius Hare, and the saying holds true of most of us. But there are men, and the Bishop was one of them, who reach the final Yes without having had to pass through the second or negative stage. He made himself acquainted with all our modern speculations, agnostic, atheistic, positive, but more because he found that he wanted such knowledge to do his own work of "ministering" thoroughly than because his faith in the Gospel the good news of God he had learnt at his mother's knee ever faltered. The negative tendency which must have been in him as in every man, was held in check, and defeated by the purity and practical activity of his life. He who is in earnest daily conflict with the false- hood and disorder which he finds in himself and all around him, is of all men least likely to be troubled by the universal " No." Such men learnt as by tuition, what comes to most of us only as the result of long and painful effort and experience that there are depths in human hearts, and regions in human lives, which no plummet of man's intellect or reason can sound, and so will neither wander out into the wilder- ness, nor beat their heads against stone walls. It may be taken then that, by the autumn of 1871 the bishop's position was thoroughly established and recognised. He had been tested by all manner of persons, in all kinds of positions and circumstances, and had proved himself a strong man all round, who must be reckoned with by every one who, whether for public or personal reasons, wanted to influence 234 LIFE OF BISHOP FRASER. PART ir. the spiritual or social life of any corner of Lancashire. He had become already a power, which employers of labour and trades' unionists, newspaper editors and politicians, as well as clergy and their flocks, had to take account of, whether they liked it or not a man, too, with no weak side without vanity and without crotchets of whom it might be truly said, as Carlyle wrote of Schiller, " Abstracted from the con- templation of himself, his eye was turned upon the objects of his labour, and he pursued them with the eagerness, the entireness, the spontaneous sincerity, of a boy pursuing sport." He had, in short, been placed by acclaim at the head of the religious and social life of his diocese. From scavengers and night-soil men up to the old county families, the hearty Northern folk had learnt to accept him on his own terms, and were ready with cordial act and word to second and sustain him. One anecdote may serve to show how he had brought the diocese round. In his first visitation to North Lancashire some of his outspoken utterances on matters which old- fashioned people held to be outside a bishop's province, had annoyed and alarmed one of the principal landowners and Churchmen Mr. Townley Parker who expressed himself strongly in this sense in the presence of his rector's wife. She, fresh from the bishop's address to their candidates for Confirmation, protested that her squire was entirely mistaken, and would have to change his mind. Mr. Parker replied that there was so little chance of that that he would give her ioo/. for any purpose she liked to name if ever this bishop entered his doors. Some months later he came again to North Lancashire, and Mr. Parker met him at a neighbour's house at dinner. 1 A week later the rector's wife got a note from 1 The Rev. II. Hawkins, Vicar of Lytham, who was present, writes to correct the statement in the text, " It was not at the dinner, at CHAP. IV. NO PARTY POLITICIAN. 235 her squire asking her and her husband to meet their bishop, and adding that the ioo/. would be paid to her order by his bankers. It was invested by the triumphant lady in a portrait of her husband by Roll. Now we may turn to his sayings and doings. Sept. St/i, 1871. "Those Orangemen at John the Baptist's have, I see, been open-mouthed at me again. I don't think their barking will do me any harm ; certainly it will not make me alter my course." This parish was amongst the most troublesome in the diocese, and occupied as much of his attention as militant churchwardens and parishioners could manage to monopolise. Amongst the latter was a Mr. Chapman, a journalist, who became a friend and corre- spondent, but whose first appeal drew forth only, Nov. 27/7*, 1871. "Pray let me draw your attention to the difference between Christian morality and the morality of Christians." 1872. Feb. 2f//i, 1872. To Mr. Chapman, acknowledging report of indignation meeting at Hulme upon his refusal as bishop to interfere authoritatively : " If my general character will not sustain me I must take my chance with other people who are misrepresented. I have no sympathy with the ecclesiastical practices alleged to be in use in Hulme, but I will not help to throw a hard-working (if mistaken) clergyman into the power of a pack of fanatical Orangemen, whose political creed seems to be their religion." Lytham Hall, on the eve of the consecration of St. Anne's Church, that Mr. Townley Parker's conversation took place. To the end of the evening he would not speak to the bishop, or go near him ; and he expressed himself to me most strongly, when I wished him good-night. It was the bishop's sermon next morning at St. Anne's Church which brought Mr. Townley Parker over. Very touching it was, the way the old man broke down in the Communion service." 236 LIFE OF BISHOP FRASER. PART n. Feb. 2<)t/i, 1872. To the Same. "Politics in the proper sense of the word, are a noble department of human activity, and in this sense not only may, but ought, to be governed by religious principles. But mere partisanship, the wretched questions which gender so much strife and bitterness, with- out having any tendency to increase the sum of human happiness or human virtue, is a very different thing. I am no politician beyond wishing to see good government estab- lished, equal laws prevailing, and intelligence universally diffused." April $oth, 1872. To the Same. " I am sorry that I can- not see my way to interfering, or any hope of my interfering with success. These broils in parishes, partly the offspring of folly, partly of obstinacy, fill me with anxiety and distress, and make me wish again and again that I had never left my quiet little village in Berks, where such anxieties were utterly unknown." May. To the editor of Punch, who had written to com- plain of a published remark of the bishop's which seemed to reflect on that journal. " I have often admired the skill and right feeling with which your artists touch delicate ground." On which the editor commented, " We can hardly regret an accident which has afforded the bishop an opportunity of showing how an act of justice can be done gracefully." Diocesan Synod. "I was not at first favourable to it, but the wish of the clergy as reported by the rural deans being unanimous, gladly adopt their view. As to the objection that it is 'not legal,' it is allowed to all classes of Her Majesty's subjects to meet for conference so long as they do not break the peace." At the synod which followed, the CHAP. iv. NO SENTIMENTALIST. 237 question of ritualism being under discussion, he said : " The symbolism of Eucharistic vestments, lighted candles, the eastward position, indicate the doctrine that the minister is. offering a propitiatory sacrifice, and this is not the doctrine of our Church. . . The whole congregation is a royal priesthood, and not a single place can be found in the Bible where a minister of the New Testament is called ' Upevs.' ;> 1873- 1873. On Church Party Organisations.- In answer to the Council of the Church Association asking him to modify or withdraw remarks he had made as to that body : " I am sorry that my language at Stockport ' that the Church Union and your Church Association have become instruments of party, lending themselves to persecutions,' has given offence. I cannot, however, retract or modify it. The temper of such associations seems to me to be essentially intolerant and persecuting," and in a letter some weeks later to the same : " I never read the report of a meeting of 'the Church Union or Church Association in which I cannot dis- cern traces of the same spirit, indicating to my mind that these two great antagonisms, by intensifying points of differ- ence, and ignoring those on which they are agreed, are rendering the prospects of union and brotherhood in the Church of England on the basis of the Book of Common Prayer more distant and hopeless than ever." At a Clerical Meeting. " Let those dream dreams who please. The simple truth-seeking student of St. Paul's letters knows that the Churches of Rome, Corinth, Galatia, Colossse, were beset with as many difficulties doctrinal, ritualistic, disciplinary some of them touching the founda- tions of the faith, as the Church of England is now. Easy 238 LIFE OF BISHOP FRASER. PART ii. times are for lifeless Churches like Sardis, for lukewarm Churches like Laodicea. ... It was an evil hour when the Church thought herself obliged to add to or develop the simple articles of the Apostles' Creed." Upon fancy pictures of heaven, and sentimental talk about longing to meet God face to face, " I venture to say there is not one person here who wishes ' to put on immor- tality.' Let people not talk such stuff, and be a little more real about their religion. The sentimentalism of our day is one of the subtlest of our religious perils." ..." Modern hymns are for the most part strangely namby-pamby, many of them grossly materialistic, those addressed to our Lord generally unctuous and sentimental." To Meeting of Working Men's Wives. " You must win your children early if you would win them at all. Above all you must not allow any child of nine or ten, when he brings you home his wages, to see that you spend them all on yourselves, and let him go half-starved. This I know is done in numberless cases." At a Public Meeting, Bradford." The Church with all her faults is labouring for Christ, and as one of her Bishops I call on all you Nonconformists to have a little more charity in your words and conduct towards her." 1874. April, 1874. Presiding at a lecture on " Cookery for the Sick Room," at the request of the Manchester School of Cookery : " You have elected me your president and so I ought to preside, though I do so with much diffidence, for I know nothing of the subject. Perhaps this may be looked CHAP. iv. A CHURCHMAN'S LIBERTY. 239 on as a mission of gastronomic philanthropy. I expected only to have a female audience, but I see that there are some men here, led by the irrepressible curiosity of their sex ; also my inevitable friends the reporters, but for whom I should not enjoy the bad character I have got throughout England." After which preface he proceeds to urge the duty of greater economy in giving dinners. In Dec., 1874, he was again in correspondence with the Churchwardens of St. John's, Hulme, Mr. Andrew and his supporters being still troubled at the rector's practices. " I mark my letters private," the Bishop writes, " because I object to your practice of handing them over to the anony- mous secretaries of a local organisation for comment in the press. It is a proceeding to which I am not accustomed and to which I have a right to object." The outcome of the correspondence was that the Bishop objected to one hymn in use in the Church but refused to interfere, and Churchwarden Andrew retired from the encounter " with unfeigned dismay." Jan., 1875. " Mr. Bright in a recent speech has been drawing a picture of the Church of England in which, with his usual power, he has represented her ministers as ' flying at each other's throats,' 'in fetters,' 'tongue-tied.' I have to rub my eyes, on reading this, and ask myself if I am asleep. I find I can move pretty freely in the limits allowed by the Church ...... A good deal of what passes as religion nowadays seems fond of parading behind bands and flags through the streets, but is seldom found in a place of worship. I don't care the snap of my finger for that kind of religion. The Church of England doesn't want it." We 240 LIFE OF BISHOP FRASER. PART n. shall see that he to some extent modified this opinion in later years. Oct. isf." I am surprised and sorry to hear that the bells of the Cathedral and of the parish Church at Black- burn were set ringing to celebrate an election triumph. The Church of England has no right, and no business, to mix herself up with party politics." To the clergy, at a meeting of the British and Foreign Bible Society : " When you are asked questions about the meaning of isolated texts have the courage to say ' I don't know.' People are, or fancy they are, troubled about fantastic questions, such as whether it is a necessary part of a saving faith to believe in a devil. A man can be saved without believing in a devil. But what we have to teach is, that no devil or evil spirit can bind even a child until it surrenders its will." He was fond in his speeches of getting off a joke at his own expense. Thus : " A lady, he was told, when asked what she had brought away after a service at which he had lately preached, replied that ' the Bishop's sleeves wanted washing.' That was very likely, as he always carried them in his bag." Here are a few of the sayings which brought on him angry comment. " Habitual confession and absolution is a practice fraught with every conceivable mischief ; not so public congregational confession." " It was an evil day when the Church added to the Apostles' Creed ' curious reticulations of faith.' As soon as she began to multiply dogmas she had to fulminate anathemas. One great secret of Christ's influence was that He turned men's thoughts away from the discussions of the Rabbis." CHAP. iv. WORKING MEN'S CLUBS. 241 "The difference of opinion which she allows to her children is the glory of our National Church." " Christians must always be growing, but nowadays we are trying to grow by taking drugs instead of food." To Working Men. " If your education doesn't teach you to say, ' As long as I can help myself I will ask no other man to help me,' it is a bad education." To Bellringers : "If their hands were required .to be clean who bore the vessels of the Sanctuary, their hearts should be pure who ring the bells of the Lord." At meetings at or for Working Men's Clubs, of which he was at first a warm advocate. " When in London, but for the restraint of my apron and gaiters, I might have to spend my evenings at a public-house, if I had not been made a member of the Athen^un when I was made a Bishop." Manchester. " I approve specially of the breadth of your membership, that you propose to include members of all political and ecclesiastical parties. I hope you will stick to this. If you do, and remain open to all Churchmen, when I am detained in town after 5 at my somewhat gloomy den in St. James's Square, I shall hope often to spend an hour or two here over a tender mutton chop, and see what The Rock, and The Church Times, and The Manchester Courier papers I don't very often see at home are saying about me." Rochdale. " I see your Club is founded on a non- religious basis, which is quite right. You also allow your members to be supplied with drink, the profit going to the Club funds. That is quite right also, if kept within proper limits, as it seems to be here, for I see that the con- R 242 LIFE OF BISHOP FRASER. PARTII. sumption of your members for the year averages i/. a head, whereas the average of the whole country is 7/. a head." It is sad for one who, like the Bishop, has been a sup- porter of Working Men's Clubs since Mr. Hodgson Pratt, their chief advocate and promoter, started on his crusade, to have to record his latest views on the subject. In April, 1885, only six months before his death he was present at a gathering at Owens College, at which Mr. Goschen delivered an address on the University extension movement, urging the importance of sending thoroughly trained lecturers into all the great centres of industrial life, and suggesting that the Clubs should be invited to work with the Universities. The Bishop said, " that he had been an early and hopeful well- wisher to the Club movement, but, going about as he did amongst all the Lancashire towns, he was sorry to say he had found these Clubs doing anything but aiding and raising the social and intellectual life and habits of the working men. Perhaps well-systematised courses of lectures, if they could be established at the Clubs as centres, might bring them back to a higher ideal. He heartily wished success at any rate to any effort in this direction." Jan. lyt/i, 1875. The Churchwardens of his Cathedral follow him to London, where he has gone for a few days, with a complaint that " Canon Woodward has been preach- ing the doctrine of the Mass." From the Athenaeum the Bishop replies, " Of course I can't refuse to comply with the request of yourself and your colleagues, and will write to Canon Woodward for his sermon ; I can only hope that on a subject so mysterious, and on which considerable latitude has always been allowed in the Church of England, his lan- guage may have been misunderstood." CHAP. iv. EXAMINATION OF CANDIDATES. 243 1875. Presiding at first Diocesan Conference. "I have never been able to ascertain what is the exact kind of Court it is which the Church Union would consider to be spiritual ; why a Chancellor appointed by the Bishop should be more a spiritual judge than the same man appointed by the Queen. Why Sir Robert Phillimore should be a seculai judge in the Admiralty and a spiritual judge in the Court of Arches. If the law requires me to wear a cope, though I don't like the notion of making a guy of myself, I will wear it." The diocese was by this time in thorough working order, so here it may be well to show how the most important of the Bishop's functions, the ordaining of priests and dea- cons, was conducted. Archdeacon Norris, his senior ex- amining chaplain, writes : " The arrangements for the Ember weeks were as follows " The candidates came up on the Wednesday evening. As " many as the Bishop's house would hold were received by " him ; for the rest he found beds at friends' houses in the " neighbourhood. On Thursday morning we all received " the Holy Communion together in the private chapel. "Then followed a three hours paper on the Greek Tcsta- " ment, and a three hours paper on Doctrine and Practice ; " at 6.30 P.M. evensong with a charge from the Bishop. On " Friday, after morning service in the chapel, papers on the " Old Testament in the forenoon, and on Evidences and " Church History in the afternoon ; then evensong with a "second charge. On Saturday morning prayer in the " chapel, Latin Composition, and a sermon ; evensong with "a third charge." " Each candidate was examined individually and orally by " the chaplains ; and the Bishop had a private interview 244 LIFE OF BISHOP FRASER. PART n. " with each. In the evenings there was supper and music " for all who liked to come. " In his later years all who sought ordination came up " some weeks before the Ember week for a preliminary " examination, the deacons in Holy Scripture, the priests in " the text books mentioned above. This not only relieved " the work of the Ember week, but also enabled the Bishop " to caution backward candidates privately that they would " do well to delay their ordination some few months, when " needed. His chaplains would have been glad if a larger li portion of the examination could have been taken at the " earlier date, so as to relieve the Ember week yet further, ",and enable us to spend some hours of each day devotion- " ally. But the Bishop feared that the majority of the men " would not appreciate this, or turn the devotional hours to " good account. And anything like unreality, or a forcing " of devotion, was abhorrent to him. Laborare est orare " was his maxim, and hard work was never irksome to him, " nor unfitted him for prayer and devotion ; and he was " apt to make scant allowance for the infirmities of others " in these respects. I am sure that he often failed to realise " how intellectual weariness, and anxiety about the result, ' unfitted many of the men to approach their ordination in " a really devotional spirit. But, on the other side, it was " one of the strong points in the Bishop's character, that he " was always natural. The men *could not fail to see this " and to appreciate it. Speaking to them in the chapel after " evensong from the few notes that he had put together in " his study, his earnest warnings, his pathetic appeals, his " ever fresh applications of Holy Scripture to the duties and ' inner life of the clergyman, came, and were felt to come, " from his lips and heart as naturally as afterwards the " pleasant anecdote and playful conversation in the drawing- CHAP. iv. ORDINATIONS. 245 " room. To have endeavoured to sustain the higher tone " of the chapel during the hour or two of relaxation that " followed, would have been alien to his nature. " Talking of the ' retreats ' and ' quiet days ' in which " many of the clergy have come to find great comfort, he " used to say to me : ' I can entirely believe that such " days are profitable to others ; but hearty, earnest work is " ' my best offering to God. And here in Manchester I " ' could not well spare more than an hour or two for such " ' devotional exercises.' " Dec. 24//<, 1875. To Archdeacon Norris. "lam afraid you have been thinking all manner of evil of me for my apparent neglect of your letters and suggestions concerning the conduct of future ordinations. But it is the exceeding difficulty of the subject which makes me hesitate, and even now I can't see my way at all clear. I still think that something not very different from our present manner of spending the time is best and healthiest for the mass of men, I don't believe that the intellectual exercises alack ! for the little intellect that is generally shown in working them are a hindrance to a spiritual frame of mind, and I think it quite possible to attempt to force this latter into an exaggerated, abnormal, and therefore unhealthy, tempera- ture. But I shall be glad to do anything that can be done to bring the more direct influence of prayer and meditation and godly counsel, to bear on the candidates individually, and if any practical scheme can be suggested, I will thank- fully fall into it. Can you come and help me in Lent, and then we will have a good deliberation upon the matter with the Dean, Anson, and Birley? But I assure you I have had frequent testimony from the best men that they haye been, I won't say satisfied with, but benefited by, things as they are. Still, I don't deny that improvement is possible." CHAPTER V. " Surely that wiser time shall come When this fine overplus of mi^ht, No longer sullen, slow and dumb, Shall leap to music and to light. " In that new childhood of the earth Life of itself shall dance and play, Fresh blood in Time's old veins make mirth, And Labour meet Delight half way." J. K. LOWELL, lleawr Brook. MANCHESTER. THE LABOUR QUESTION. TRADES UNIONS CO-OPERATION. I8 74 . IN the Diocese of Manchester, the centre of England's industrial life, it was of course impossible that a Bishop should not be confronted at once with the problems of the labour question ; and equally impossible for a Bishop of Eraser's temper and principles to stand aloof from them on the plea that the Church had no concern with such, being only responsible for the spiritual life of the nation. In his quiet country parish he had only been a distant spectator of the struggle, but, as was his wont, had formed a very decided opinion upon the central and critical question round which the battle was in those days raging most fiercely. This opinion was soon drawn from him in Manchester, and he gave it concisely, precisely, and once for all, in the words, " I am no lover of the principles of trades unionism, but CHAP. v. UMPIRE. 247 they have been forced on the working classes by the inequitable use of the power of capital." This emphatic utterance, putting, I think, truly the con- clusion to which the independent judgment of the nation was already leaning, drew on him the fire of both sides : the employers taking care that he should be informed of all high-handed or tyrannical doings of the unions, and the working men returning the compliment with equal vigilance. The Bishop, as usual, went his own way, promptly answer- ing all appeals, and never mincing or paring down his honest opinion to suit the prejudices or views of either side. Of course the result was, that he was constantly bdng taken to task by the organs of both, while at the same time the faith of both sides in his fairness and sympathy was steadily growing. The first public proof of this occurred in the spring of 1874, when, in a dispute between the master painters of Manchester and Salford and their men, the arbitrators being unable to agree, both sides appealed to him to act as umpire, under their " working rules, agreed to between the employers and operative painters of Manchester and Salford, on January 6th, 1871." The Bishop accepted the office, and went into all the questions at issue with his usual zeal and thoroughness. He delivered his award in writing on the 27th of March, pre- facing it with " As I think it will be more satisfactory to both parties if I give not only my decision, but (as briefly as may be) the reasons which have led me to it in each case, it will be the simplest and clearest course to deal with each rule in order." This he then proceeds to do. Those who have had experience in these references, will, I think, demur to the Bishop's conclusion. Giving reasons for the decision arrived at by an umpire in a trade dispute will be found as a rule merely to exasperate the parties, and 248 LIFE OF BISHOP FRASER. PART n. to prolong the war of words and arguments. In the case in question, however, no harm seems to have come of it, and the Bishop's award insured peace in the trade for two years. It dealt with three points, and decided " (i) that the minimum rate of wage per hour shall be 7|d. (2) That overtime on full working days shall not be paid for at the rate of " time and half" before the hour of 9 P.M. : but that on Saturdays, whether a job is being finished or not, over- time shall be reckoned and paid for at the usual rate. (3) That is. per week extra shall be allowed to men employed on country jobs who are required to stay away from home on Sunday." The rules were altered in accordance with this decision, and the Bishop heard no more of the painters till March, 1876, when the court of arbitration again appealed to him to act as umpire, and he again consented, and went once more through the usual drudgery of weighing and comparing the contradictory statements and figures of two sets of dis- putants, neither of whom will frankly put their umpire in possession of the whole of the facts. Again the Bishop in his award gave the reasons for his decision, an extract from which may be given here. The men were applying for an increase of id. an hour on the rate of i\d. fixed by him two years before. " It was in- deed asserted," writes the Bishop, " that the men could not 'live in comfort' on this wage, and their condition was even represented as ' little better than paupers.' But it was re- plied that a wage which (exclusive of overtime) amounts to ji 14$. o\d. per week, and, allowing for three months lost time in the year, gives an average weekly income for the fifty- two weeks of i 6s. zd., was considerably above the earnings of large classes of men in Manchester carters, gardeners, &c. who certainly would not consent to be characterised CHAP. v. TRADE DISPUTES. 249 as paupers. ' Living in comfort ' is a phrase depending for its meaning on the ideas of him who uses it. I heartily wish that every working man in England were in possession of every comfort which his station will reasonably allow him to procure, and with the cultivation of frugal and temperate habits, much more might be done in this desirable direction than is done ; but I venture to think that in determining the rate of wages I must not be led away by a somewhat vague phrase, but must be guided in my judgment by other and more relevant considerations. My own observation of the condition of this country, in which many great branches of industry are lying almost prostrate, and none of the staple trades of this district can be called flourishing, would lead me to the conclusion at which the masters have arrived, viz., that the public generally can ill afford to meet enhanced prices, which would necessarily follow a higher wage rate ; and that if pi ices are enhanced trade would probably be in the same proportion contracted. The demand, therefore, for an immediate advance of wages would seem to be in- opportune." And then, after commenting on the rates of twenty-four towns in the north, some higher, some lower, than the Manchester rate, he goes on, " It must not be forgotten also that the wage rate fixed by the rules is a minimum rate, and that good men can and do earn higher wages, so that a man has only to improve his skill as a tradesman to improve his position as a wage-earner. Upon these considerations which I have thought it well to state fully, my original conclusion was, not to disturb the arrange- ment of 1874. But upon reflection that it was admitted that there has been a slight increase in house rent, and, following the usual method of compromise to halve the amount in dispute, I have finally decided* that *}\d. per hour the mean between the id. offered by the masters and the 250 . LIFE OF BISHOP FRASER. PART 11. %\d. demanded by the men will not be an inequitable solution of a problem, all the elements of which are with difficulty apprehended by one outside the trade, and I award accordingly. I am afraid that the decision will not give satisfaction to either party, but I hope I shall have credit for having attempted to decide it fairly and without favour." His experience with the painters made him rather shy of the office of umpire in trades disputes for the future. To spend three or four days hard at work on detailed statements of accounts, which you feel all the time are, not exactly cooked, but so arranged and manipulated, both as to what is disclosed and what concealed, that you never can feel sure of your premisses, is an occupation which to a busy and accurate man can never seem profitable. And the usual conclusion, arrived at by the Bishop in this instance as happens, let us add, in nine such cases out of ten with other than episcopal umpires to split the difference be- tween the parties is, it must be owned, not otherwise than a humiliating one. Nevertheless he was still ready to come forward as a peacemaker, and never lost an opportunity of protesting against the folly and the waste of strikes and lock-outs. Thus, when the Agricultural Union in 1874 first began to show that it was becoming a power which might have to be reckoned with in the future, and the employers endeavoured to crush it before the mischief was done, a letter of the Bishop's went the round of the papers which sorely tried the public, and drew on him a perfect storm of letters, abusive, sympathetic, critical. "Are the farmers of England mad?" the peccant sentences ran. " Fair wages will have to be paid to the labourer. If farmers can't afford fair wages at present, rents must come down an unpleasant thing no doubt for those who will spend the rent of a 300 aero CHAP. v. STRIKES. 251 farm on a single ball, or a pair of high-stepping horses, but nevertheless inevitable." 1878. When the great cotton strike in North-East Lancashire in the summer of 1878, on the question of 10 per cent, reduction of wages, had lasted for seven weeks, the opera- tives proposed to refer the points in dispute to him (no doubt as an escape from the humiliation of an unconditional surrender). This the employers, now sure of their ground, refused, but it gave the Bishop the chance of making an appeal, and reading both sides a lesson. " I appeal to you as your Bishop," he wrote, " bound by my orifice to promote peace in this county : as a resident amongst you witnessing the fearful distress and misery which this dispute is causing : as an Englishman interested in the prosperity of my country which these trade disputes are threatening to destroy, to put an end to this mad war. This is the seventh week of idle- ness, and the loss to the workpeople has already mounted up to 525,0007. in wages alone. What next? The extra- ordinary growth and prosperity of this business in past years would seem to have blinded all connected with it. The prosperity of fools shall destroy them ! " The Bishop exhorted in vain. In a week or two the operatives had to surrender unconditionally and go back to work on the 10 per cent, reduction. No bridge or even plank for retreat was allowed by the triumphant employers, who were resolved that the workpeople should drink the cup of humiliation to the dregs. They drank, and the taste remains in their mouths to this day. Three years later another wide-spread strike occurred in Bolton and the neighbourhood. A local relief fund for the families of the operatives was opened to which the Bishop 252 LIFE OF BISHOP FRASER. PART n. sent 20/. This was acknowledged by Mr. Broadhurst, the Secretary of the Parliamentary Committee of the Trade Unions, who took the occasion to forward copies of the reports. In acknowledging them the Bishop took care to show that he had not changed his mind as to the Unions and their policy. " It surely indicates," he wrote, " that something is needed, when at Bolton it has required a strike of nine weeks, involving a loss of 9o,ooo/. in wages, to arrive at a settlement which might just as easily have been arrived at without any strike at all." It was in connection with this strike that he commented on the luxury and extravagance which was growing in several districts, in- stancing the case which had come to his knowledge of a factory girl giving three guineas for feathers. " Wherever luxury marches a waste is left behind as if an hostile army had passed." Again, " He was told, forsooth ! that luxury was good for trade ! if good trade means bankruptcy both to tradesman and customer, perhaps it is." He continued to the end to make his protest whenever occasion offered against the folly of strikes and the fearful responsibility of those who promoted them. One of the last and most powerful of these was a sermon on the subject at Blackburn on January 27th, 1884. We may now turn, with a sense of relief, to his relations with the other and hopeful side of the labour movement, co-operation. Of this, even more than of trades-unionism, he found himself in the very centre. The offices of the Central Board were in Manchester, and the publishing office of "The Co-operative News." The wholesale society, or federation of the associations throughout the country for purchasing, also had its warehouses there, and in many of the Lancashire towns and villages a large and constantly increasing portion of the trade was already in the hands of CHAP. v. CO-OPERATION. 253 the associations. Now the Bishop had been the first person of any influence outside the co-operative body to draw public attention to the movement. So far as the public were concerned he had been the discoverer of the Assington Agricultural Association ; and, as readers may remember, in his report as a sub-commissioner had expressed warm approval of the principles of the association, and a wish for their extension. It was a cause therefore of much rejoicing to the Co-operative Union when his appointment was an- nounced, for at that time outside help was still valuable, both in Parliament and the country. The Union, however, much to their credit, abstained from seeking to parade him as an ally. Great jealousy of the movement prevailed amongst the trading classes throughout the country, which was even shared to some extent by the Trades Unionists ; and it was felt that it might seriously jeopardise his influence for good generally if he were to be pushed to the front as an advocate and supporter of co-operation. It was only, therefore, on rare and special occasions that he was asked to take any active part in public. Nevertheless it was impossible that the fact of his sympathy should not become known, and equally impossible that it should not become the subject of warning and comment in the press. To this he paid no heed, going his own way, and never out of his own way ; but taking care also never to conceal or pare away any conviction which he held when the occasion for speaking came. Thus, when at length taken seriously to task by the Grocers' Defence Association, and warned that "a dignified neu- trality" upon this question was the proper attitude for a Bishop, he replied promptly, " a dignified neutrality is not my attitude on any question I think important." It was not till 1878, when his position had become too secure to be damaged by friend or foe, that he was called on 254 LIFE OF BISHOP FRASER. PART IT. tu identify himself publicly with co-operation. In that year the annual Congress was held in Manchester. The Bishop was of course invited. He came on the platform on the first day to support Lord Ripon, and on the second himself presided. His address was thoroughly characteristic of the man, whose special function as an orator was always not to say soft things which his audience would like to hear. He had not been on his feet two minutes before he had assured the meeting that though an old believer in the principle he had never spent sixpence in a co-operative store, and didn't mean to do so as long as his tradesmen served him well. Then, passing over the statistics of in- creasing numbers and trade, so tempting a subject for the ordinary chairman, he put his finger at once upon what probably three-fourths of his hearers knew to be the tender place. He was afraid, he said, as an interested watcher of the movement, that serious disaster must be in store for many of the mills which had of late been, and still were being, started by the working men, both as registered in- dustrial societies and as joint stock companies, at Oldham and elsewhere. The recent years of great prosperity seemed to have turned their heads, and made them reckless, and ready to fall into the bad paths which it was the main object of their movement to avoid and protest against. And then followed one of those humorous scenes which not seldom occurred at his public meetings. He was speaking as usual without a note, and following wherever his subject might lead him. Something had been said on the first day as to the narrowness of the clergy, and their want of sympathy with co-operation. Referring to this the Bishop went on, " I am more of a Liberal than a Conservative myself, but it may be true that the great body of the clergy are Con- servative. Haven't they got a good thing to conserve?" CHAP. v. THE CO-OPERATIVE CONGRESS. 255 At once, ye'Acos a

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