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was very great canvassing both with Ludovicus Priulus, the doge of Ve nice, and Cosmus, the grand duke of Tuscany. Almost about the same time, a grievous storm, arising upon a suspicion of heresy, did with a perillous gust shake the whole house of the Socini. After the death of Alexander, Lælius had three brethren surviving, of whom Celsus lived at Bononia; Cornelius and Camillus together with Faustus, son to his brother Alexander, dwelt at Sene. Amongst these also Lælius, a marvellous artist in suggesting the truth, had scattered the seeds thereof; and, though he were separated by the remote distances of countries, yet did he by effectual industry so cherish them, that, being unknown as yet, and absent, he drew the wives of some to his party. Nor were there wanting, amongst his other familiars and friends, such as were either partners in the same design, or privy thereunto. But the fair hope of that crop was blasted in the very blade, Cornelius being taken, and the rest either scattered, or chaced away. This fear drove Faustus also, then very young, not only out of his native city, but out of Italy itself: Who having lived a while at Lyons in France, Lælius was in the mean time extinguished by an untimely death at Zurich. Faustus, being certified of his death by the letters of Marius Besozzus, had much ado to prevent the snares laid for his papers, yet got the possession thereof, having been already by him informed of very many things, which he afterwards, in long progress of time, did by his sharp wit and indefatigable study polish. The death of Lælius happened on the third day after the ides of May, 1562, and in the thirty-seventh year of his age. That so great a wit was not long-lived, will not seem strange to him who shall consider how soon it was ripe. He had hardly passed the age of a stripling, when he left Italy. Within the six and twentieth year of his life, having travelled almost through all the regions of the west, he was, by his great renown, made known to most of the chief nobility in sundry parts; and perhaps to all learned men every where. It was well nigh fifteen years that he was absent from his country. Out of so small a space of life far journies challenge a great part, by means of which, his exile became profitable to many in sundry coasts of Europe. Add his perpetual commerce with so many great men, together with his continual intercourse of letters, and when you have subtracted these things, how small a pittance of time, I pray you, was left for his studies ? And now, being amazed, we must enquire, what was that so profound leisure? what so vigorous industry? What so ready wit? What so vast understanding, as was sufficient to master so many tongues, so many sciences, and withal to recollect the mind to itself, and manage the greatest affairs ? To premise these things touching Lælius, had I not listed of my own accord, necessity itself did require. For he it was who by his guidance and counsel drew Faustus himself and others to enter into that way, which they asterwards followed.
Now I return to Faustus, intending in the first place to relate, in brief, the course and chief occurrences of his life; then to comprise his chief actions; and lastly to add a few words concerning the habit of his mind and body, as far as I have by a cursory enquiry attained the knowledge thereof.
He was born, two hours and almost three quarters before sun-rising, on the nones of December, 1539, well nigh fourteen years younger than his uncle Lælius. He died in the year 1604, a little before the beginning of the spring, being sixty-five years old,
He first spent twenty, and a little after twelve years of age in his country; about three in his retirement at Lyons; the other thirty in volun. tary exile. He seemeth to have lost his parents at that age, which is most apt for the improvement of learning and wit. For he complaineth how he employed his labour in the studies of good arts very slightly, and without the guidance of a teacher. And elsewhere, how he had not learnt philosophy, nor ever was acquainted with school-divinity; and confesseth that in logick itself he never tasted but only certain rudiments, and that
late. It was a baffle to that proud age, to be taught by so notable an instance, that, even without those helps, which we, though not without cause, yet oftentimes without measure do admire, there may be great men, and such as will perform rare feats. Perhaps also it was expedient, that a wit, born to take cognisance of the opinions of the world, should be tainted with no prejudices; lest it should admit some string of those errors, for the rooting out of which it grew up. For divinity, being full of errors, infected also pbilosophy itself
, and almost all good arts. And therefore not only in the cradle, but also in the very rudiments of the first learning the infancy of the world, hath now for a long time been deceived, and sucked in opinions as true, before it was able to judge whether ihey were false. Whereby it cometh to pass, that oftentimes it is better to be seasoned with none, than with perverse doctrines. Nor is it a wonder that sometimes learned men dote more shamefully, and the rude multitude judgeth more sincerely. Which I would not have so taken, as if I would condemn learning, but only the abuse thereof; nor give a check, but a caution to it. With such a slight tincture of learning, and, as I suppose, with the study of the civil law, the first age of Socinus was taken up, until the three and twentieth year. Yet had he before sucked in the principles of divine truth, partly by his own sharp wit, partly by the instruction of his uncle Lælius, especially when, upon the rising of a sudden tempest, he, as we before hinted, betook himself into France. Although Lælius, confiding in the wit of his nephew, did intimate more to his guess, than deliver to his understanding; concealing also some things from the young man, for the trial of his judgment, and openly presaging amongst his friends, that these things should more fully and happily by Faustus be discovered to the world. But, when after the death of Lælius he was returned into Italy, in that unsteddy age of his life, his youth, floating like a ship without a pilot, and carried away with I know not what winds, almost grew old among the Sirens of the court. For, being admitted into the palace of Francis, the grand duke of Tuscany, and very much endeared to him by honourable employments, whilst he there flourished in highest favour and dignity, he spent whole twelve years in the court of Florence. Then did he lose, as he with perpetual groans complained, the most flourishing part of his life; if at least that time is to be accounted lost, wherein this sublime jndgment was formed, not with the shadowy precepts of learning, but with the substantial experiments of life; wherein also that youthful heat of his evaporated, which, for the most part, hurrieth great wits to great falls. And indeed, were we not otherwise assured of it, yet, from the very force of his wit, we might conjecture with how vehement motions that nature of his was sometimes agitated. About the close of that time, his heart was touched with a serious deliberation, concerning the choice of good things; wbich he performed with such greatness of mind, that he determined, for the hope of heavenly things, to trample under foot all the commodities of earthly wishes; wherefore without delay, despairing to obtain from the extremely unwilling princes leave to depart, he, of his own accord, forsook his country, friends, hopes, and riches, that he might the more freely employ himself about his own and other men's salvation. That his service had not been ungrateful to the grand duke, the longing after him, being now absent and in exile, shewed. For sundry times by letters and messengers, chiefly at the motion of Paulus Jordanus Ursinus a nobleman, who had married the grand duke's sister, he sollicited Socinus to return, which he with usual modesty, but resolute mind, did refuse. It was the year of our Lord 1574, and the five and thirtieth of his age, when he retired out of Italy into Germany. At his coming he was entertained by Basil, that courteous receiver of Christ's esiles, which had long since learned to cherish in her lap endangered in. nocency. Where he studied divinity full three years and upwards, being chiefly intent upon the sacred scriptures, to the sincere understanding whereof whilst he aspired with daily vows and prayers, he was much helped with a very few writings of his uncle Lælius, and sundry scattered notes left by him. Which thing, though it was in his power to suppress it, yet did he always ingenuously own and profess. As he lived at Basil until the year 1575, he detained not, within the closet of his private breast, the truth that had been deposited with him. And therefore, whilst he endeavoured to propagate unto others the light that was risen to himself, he proceeded by degrees, from reasoning with his friends, to discourse with strangers, and, having begun his disputation concerning Jesus Christ the Saviour by word of mouth, he afterwards comprised it in writing. Which before he could finish, being first excluded by sickness from his studies, then by the pestilence from his books left at Basil, he in the mean time dispatched at Zurich, in the beginning of the year 1978, another disputation with Franciscus Puccius; and afterwards in the same year, being returned to Basil, he put the last hand to his book, concerning the Saviour. At that time the Transylvanian churches were extremely infested with the opinion of Franciscus Davidis and others, touching the honour and power of Christ. To remedy which mischief, Georgius Blandrata, a man very powerful in those churches, and with the Bathorrean princes, who had then ruled the nation, in that very year of the Lord invited Socinus from Basil, to the end he might draw the ringleader of the faction,Franciscus Davidis, from so gross and pernicious an error; which that it might the more commodiously be effected, having at a great rate hired a lodging for Socinus, with Franciscus Davidis, he would have them both for above the space of four months to use the same house and table. But the said Franciscus took far greater care how to retain his credit amongst those of his party, than how to seek after the truth. Whereupon adventuring not only to spread his error in private, but publickly to proclaim it in the pulpit, bedrew present danger on himself, being soon cast into prison by the command of the Prince of Transylvania, where he shortly after ended his life. Of whose death, though Socinus was altogether guiltless, yet did he not escape blame, As if he were not able to vanquish the said Franciscus with other weapons, when notwithstanding the disputations of both are published. Or that magistrate was so addicted to the cause of Socinus, as to employ the weapons of his authority for him, or any one of his party. But, if perhaps some person, who favoured the cause of Socinus, did incite the princes to deal roughly with the said Franciscus, whereof nevertheless I am not certain, yet let not Socinus be blamed for him, inasmuch as he could neither knuw his counsel, nor approve his deed. For, to omit sundry considerations, there could not happen any thing more contrary to the mind of Socinus, than that such a doctrine, as could not be defended with the words and wit of the said Franciscus, whilst he lived, should seem to be confirmed by the mute, but efficacious testimony of his death: especially because, carrying the face of a martyrdom, it presently turned the eyes of all men to it. The disputation of Socinus with him, though written, whilst the said Franciscus was alive, could notwithstanding hardly come to light fifteen years after. When this disputation was finished in May, anno 1579, and presented to the Transylvanian churches, Socinus could not long tarry there, by reason of a disease then raging, which they commonly call the cholick. Wherefore in the same year, being now forty years old, he travelled into Poland, where he made suit publickly to be united to the Polonian churches, which acknowledge none but the Father of the Lord Jesus Christ to be the most High God. But, not concealing his dissent in certain doctrines, here suffered a repulse very roughly and for a long time.
Nevertheless he, being composed unto patience, not so much by his natural inclination, as by the resolution of his mind, was no whit enraged with this disgrace, nor ever gave any signs of a disaffected mind; but rather undertook to repel with his wit the incursion of divers adversaries, who then infested those churches. And first of all he re. ceived the charge of Andreas Volanus, by refelling his Parænesis ; and upon the same occasion, at the request of Niemojevius, the seventh chapter of the epistle to the Romans was explained. Afterwards it pleased him to assail Jacobus Palæologus, whose reputation and authority did at that time cherish the relicks of pernicious errors in men otherwise well-minded. Him being somewhat roughly handled, not out of hatred, but advice, he always excused. A little after, when Volanus had renewed the fight, he was again encountered, and withal an answer made to the positions of the college of Ponsa. Whilst Socinus undergoeth so much fighting and hatred for the patronage of the truth, amongst so many enemies there wanted not some calumniators. Stephanus was then King of Poland. A pickthank blows his ears with the report of a book written against the magistrate; adding, that it would be a very dishonourable thing to suffer a wandering Italian exile to escape Scot-free with so bold an enterprise, He hinted at the book against Palæologus. Which though it required no other testimony of its innocency, than the reading, yet did he think good to decline the danger.
Whereupon, he departed from Cracovia, where he had now lived four years, to a nobleman, named Christophorus Murstinus, Lord of Pawlicovia; in which place he defended his innocency, not so much by skulking, as by the privilege of nobility in our nation: for that suburb-farın is a few miles distant from Cracovia. It seemed a wiser course to clear himself from the crimes laid to his charge, rather out of that place, than out of prison; nor was he entertained in that hospitable house, for that nick of time only, but there cherished for above three years. And, to the end that the courtesy shewed to an exile and stranger might be more abundant, a little while after, the daughter of the family, a noble virgin, was, at his suit, given him in marriage; so that, being of a stranger become a son-in-law, he seemed to have established his security in those places, by affinities and friendships. Whilst he lived in the country, he wrote many notable pieces, and chiefly that against Eutropius, constantly defending the fame and cause of that church, which had, with most unjust prejudice, condemned him, and caused him, though innocent, continually to suffer many indignitjes. His daughter Agnes was born to him in the year of our Lord 1587, and forty-eighth of his age; of whom, being, after her father's death, married to Stanislaus Wiszowatius, a Polonian knight, there are as yet remaining nephews and nieces. In September the same year, he lost his wife Elisabeth; which sad and disastrous chance was followed with a grievous fit of sickness, so obstinate, that, for certain months, it caused the use of his studies to cease. And, that no kind of calamity might be wanting, almost about the same time, by the death of Franciscus, the Grand Duke of Tuscany, the revenues of his estate, which he received yearly out of Italy, were quite laken away from him. Indeed, a little before, by the bitterness of accusers, and threats of popes, his estate came into danger; but, by the strenuous endeavour of Isabella Medicea, the Grand Duke's sister (who was married to the aforesaid Paulus Jordanus Ursinus) whilst she lived, and afterwards by the favour of Franciscus, the Grand Duke, it came to pass, that, during his life, Socinus received the yearly income of his estate. For, indeed, his old deserts were still so fresh in memory, that those princes, though long since forsaken, and oftentimes rejected, did yet, in a most difficult matter, gratify the letters and prayers of a condemned and exiled person. Yea, letters full of courtesy were sent unto him, and he bidden to be of good chear for the future, as long as they lived, so that, in setting forth books, he suffered not his name to appear. But those princes were then taken away by a destiny disastrous to Socinus. And, that all things might seem to have conspired to the perplexity of the man, being a widower, sick, and stripped of all his fortunes, he was molested with the very times of our common-wealth, which were then exceeding turbulent, because divers did contend who should be the King of Poland; so that the adversaries, thereupon, took greater license to themselves. Socinus was now returned to Cracovia, and sought solace, in the midst of so many evils, from the employment,