Page:Books Condemned to be Burnt - James Anson Farrer.djvu/48

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Books Condemned to be Burnt.

dence alone, one cannot feel sure that he died justly. But had the insurrection only succeeded, it is curious to think what an amount of misery might have been spared to England, and how dark a page been lacking from the history of Christianity!

Thomas's book was republished in 1561: but the first edition, that of 1549, is, of course, the right one to possess; though its fate has caused it to be extremely rare.

Coming now to Queen Elizabeth's reign, the comparative rarity of book-burning is an additional testimony to the wisdom of her government But (to say nothing of books that were prohibited or got their printers or authors into trouble) certain works, religious, political, and poetical, achieved the distinction of being publicly burnt, and they are works that curiously illustrate the manners of the time.

The most important under the first of these heads are the translations of the works of Hendrick Niclas, of Leyden, Father of the Family of Love, or House of Charity, which were thought dangerous enough to be burnt by Royal Proclamation on October 13th, 1579; so that such works as the Joyful Message of the Kingdom, Peace upon Earthy the Prophecy of the Spirit of Love, and others, are now