Page:Dictionary of National Biography. Sup. Vol II (1901).djvu/21

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Church
Churchill
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mon with two of his most distinguished predecessors at St. Paul's. Like Colet he 'studied to be quiet.' The motto of the one might well have been the motto of the other, 'Si vis divinus esse, late ut deus.' Both were raised to high place against their inclination. On another side, in his passionate piety, he suggests Donne, and, like Donne, he was remarkable as a writer of prose, though the style was of quite another character. The early tractarians set much store by reserve and reality, which are two sides of the same austere love of truth, and alike in temper and in style Church was a tractarian. In a letter (21 Sept. 1887) to a correspondent who consulted him on the cultivation of style, he says the only training in style he had recognised in himself was watching against the temptation of 'unreal' and 'fine' words; and he adds that he owed it to Newman, if he could write at all simply and with a wish to be real. The influence of Newman is easily traceable in the candour and lucidity of his writing, but it lacks Newman's flexibility and ease. Church's best work as a writer was a series of critical studies, the chief being upon Anselm (1843, expanded 1870), Dante (1850), Spenser in the 'English Men of Letters' series (1879), and Bacon in the same series (1884). As a critic his characteristic note is one of moderation and wide sympathy. The son of a merchant of business interests in many countries, by a lady of German extraction, himself born at Lisbon and bred at Florence, he was by nature cosmopolitan: and his quaker blood further assisted in freeing him from many prejudices habitual in religious Englishmen of his generation. He was gifted with considerable historical insight and imagination, and such studies as those on the early Ottomans and the court of Leo X are admirable specimens of their class. In theology his power lay in the treatment of moral rather than doctrinal or philosophical questions. His book on Anselm ignores the philosophical treatises, though he made an excellent edition of the first book of Hooker's 'Ecclesiastical Polity' (1868), and with Dr. Paget revised Keble's edition of the whole (1888). He was perhaps the most impressive preacher of his generation: the only one who suggested to his hearers the presence of a prophetic gift. His sermons before the universities or at St Paul's were almost always upon moral and social questions. Their titles are as follows: 'The Gifts of Civilisation' (1880), 'Human Life and its Conditions' (1878); 'Discipline of the Christian Character' (1885). A further volume of Cathedral and University Sermons was published posthumously (1892). The most interesting feature of these sermons is the serious attempt they make to distinguish between the advantages of civilisation and culture, which are recognised at their full value, and the peculiar benefits of Christianity. A volume (1893) called 'Paschal and other Sermons' contains excellent studies of the 'Pensees,' Bishop Butler, and Bishop Andrewes. They are all the work of a mind with a large and clear outlook and great delicacy of perception and discrimination.

[Life and Letters of Dean Church, edited by his daughter, M. C. Church, 1895; obituary notices in Times and Guardian, December 1890; Craik's English Prose Writers; private information.]

H. C. B.

CHURCHILL, RANDOLPH HENRY SPENCER, commonly known as Lord Randolph Churchill (1849–1895), statesman, was the third son of John Winston Churchill, seventh duke of Marlborough [q. v.], by Lady Frances Anne Emily, daughter of Charles William Vane Stewart, third marquis of Londonderry [q. v.] His eldest brother, George Charles (1844–1892), became the eighth duke of Marlborough; the second brother, Frederick, died young in 1850. Randolph Churchill was born at Blenheim Palace on 13 Feb. 1849. After some instruction at home he was sent in 1857 to Mr. Tabor's preparatory school at Cheam, whence he was removed in January 1863 to Eton. During his first year he was an inmate of the house of the Rev. W. A. Carter, subsequently exchanging to that of Mr. Frewen, where he remained till he left Eton in July 1865. His tutor during the latter part of this period was the Rev. Edmond Warre, who became head-master in 1884. During his comparatively brief career at Eton he bore the character of a high-spirited boy, not very amenable to discipline, and rather frequently in difficulties with the school authorities. Among his slightly older contemporaries at the college were Mr. Arthur Balfour and Lord Rosebery, the latter of whom, after Lord Randolph's death, described him as his 'lifelong friend.' After leaving Eton he spent some time with tutors at Ischl in Austria and elsewhere. On 21 Oct. 1867 Lord Randolph matriculated at Merton College, Oxford. At the university, as at Eton, he cannot be said to have made any conspicuous mark, and was scarcely recognised by his contemporaries as an under-graduate likely to attain future eminence. His friends, though some of them became distinguished in later life, were not num-