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the importance and fanctity which he had affumed, and calm. and collected amidst the profufion of authorities with which he had been furnished.
As to Mr. Madan's own charge againft his numerous oppo-, nents, viz. that he hath not been understood;' we shall only. reply, that the accufation, if true, reflects more on himself than on them. It rather betrays his own want of perfpicuity, than their want of understanding. It fhews-not that they have read his work carclefsly-but that he hath penned it unfairly.. If its good principles lurk in obfcurity, and its pernicious ones. appear in open day-light, who is moft to be blamed-the Author or his anfwerers?-be, who hides what he thinks to be ufeful, or they who oppofe what they know to be prejudicial?
But the fact is, Mr. Madan's accufation is groundlefs, However cumbered his work may be with needlels repetitions, and vague, impertinent digreffions:-however dcbafed by vulgar ftories, and low, unregenerate wit, his main object is fo perfpicuous that he who runs may read. In fhort, his whole fyftem may be reduced to two general heads: and it is for the fupport of thefe heads, that every fubordinate divifion, digreffion, quotation, anecdote, tale, pun, and what not, were ultimately de-. figned, and introduced into his elaborate performance :-viz.
that marriage is fimply nothing more than copulation;-and. any married man copulating with any fingle woman, makes her "his own property and lawful wife, by that very act, in the "fight of God and confcience; and that fuch an union ought. "to be ratified as facred and indiffoluble by the canons of every ecclefiaftical, and the laws and fanctions of every political, "establishment upon earth."
This is Mr. M.'s fyftem of marriage and polygamy: and this is the very system which we, and all his other anfwerers, have oppofed.
But how doth this Writer attempt to make good his charge?. How doth he prove that he hath been mifunderftood, and mifreprefented? We are forry to fay, that he hath recourse to the moft difingenuous fubterfuge that the supporter of a bad caufe can fly to, in the moment when truth, and the fairest deduc tions of the plainest arguments, prefs hard upon him. It is this "that the Author of Thelyphthora doth not, as his opponents. would infinuate, recommend the indifcriminate practice of po-: lygamy."-Indifcriminate! What a delufive equivoque! But how would he define the word? Where would he draw the line between lawful and unlawful polygamy? What limitations would he fix to the practife of it, without overthrowing the very authorities by which he labours to fupport it? When is it to be regarded as a duty: and when ought it to be avoided as a crime? and further, who is to decide the point for individuals? with
whom is the appeal to be ultimately lodged?--Till he anfwers'
From our Author's reasonings on this inftance of David and the wives of Saul, we may juffly infer that he doth not regard indifcriminate polygamy as a fin, either against the law of Revelation, or the rights of human nature:-if by indifcriminate he means as many wives as a man hath the capacity of providing for. Here then the matter that. had been fo artfully fhaded grows perfectly clear; and equivocation itself vanishes. Mr. M. doth not recommend indifcriminate polygamy. Why?-not that it is finful in any; but because it may be imprudent in fome. The man who marries three wives, when he can fupport but two; or who marries two, when he can fupport but one, is at the utmoft to be confidered as indifcreet; and only to be blamed in the fame proportion as we in these days blame a man for marrying one wife when he hath but barely the means of fupporting himself. We tax his prudence, but we spare his principles. He may be a good man, though a bad œconomist. He hath brought no guilt upon his confcience; he hath only brought an incumbrance on his family; and if he can reconcile his conduct to the latter, he need be under no concern about the former.
This is the ultimate scope of Mr. M.'s reafonings; and in his remarks on the cafe of Mahlon who refufed to marry Ruth,
• In commenting on this cafe, Mr. M. betrays a fpecies of difengenuity for which we have no precife word, and can only exprefs it by a periphrafis; for it is compounded of feveral qualities which carry with them both impofition and infult. The learned Dr. Delany had obferved from Selden's Uxor Hebr. that "the Chaldee paraphraft,
the Midrash, and Jofephus agree, that this was the reason why "Mahlon's next kinfman refuted to redeem Ruth his widow, viz. "because it was not lawful for him to marry her, having a wife of his "own." Now, fays Mr. M. I have looked into Bishop Patrick on Ruth, 4, 6, who mentions the paffage alluded to in the Chalace Parapbraft and the Midrash; and fo far from their appearing to say what the Dean would make them, there is not a word of any fuch thing: they put a quite different fenfe upon the words.'-We have nothing more to do than to produce the paffage itfelf from Mr. Şelden, and let our Readers judge for themselves whether our reflection be well or ill founded. Ego non poffum uti jure propinquitatis feu redimendi; ne minuam feu corrumpam hæreditatem meiipfius. Sed ibi paraphrafis Chaldæus. Ego non poffum mihi reaimere, quoniam jam ante mihi axor. Neque licet mihi aliam ei fuperinducere, ne inde rixa in domo mea sriatur, at ne lædam poffeffionem meam. Redime igitur tu, quoniam tu meutiquam uxorem habes, et ego redimere nequeo.' i. e. "I cannot redeem it for my felf, left I'mar my own inheritance. (Ruth, 4, 6.) On which "paffage the Chaldee Paraphraft thus comments,―It is out of my power "to redeem it, because I have a wife already: nor would it be law. "ful for me to marry another, left rife thould arife in my family,
Ruth, because he was unwilling to mar his own inheritance, he makes use of thefe reafonings without referve; artfully applying to his purpose a text from St. Paul, which any bad man with equal juftice might apply to any bad account:-" All things are lawful for me, but all things are not expedient."
In our former criticism on Thelyphthora, we have attempted to prove, not only that its pofition refpecting the rites of marriage is politically dangerous, but theologically falfe. It is even falfe on the ground of the Levitical law-which is Mr. M.'s dernier refort.
We will add one remark to strengthen our preceding arguments, in oppofition to the loose and pernicious maxims which Mr. M. hath laboured to eftablifh. It is this. Betrothment conftituted a woman the lawful wife of the man to whom the had pledged her felf; and as his wife fhe was confidered before confummation had taken place. She was exprefsly called his wife; and the violation of a betrothed woman was regarded in the fame heinous light as adultery; and punished precifely in the fame degree. Now betrothment muft have been founded on fome formal agreement: that agreement-how made or by what mode or ceremony ratified, is no part of the argument-but that agreement, however ftipulated, gave marriage a fanction, and conftituted the right which a man might claim to the woman as his own property, prior to, and independent of, the carnal knowledge of each other's perfons. If the latter took place without the intervention of any previous ftipulations, or without a compliance with the common and established forms, the law graciously condefcended to provide a remedy for the fake of the woman. If fhe had been feduced, and inviegled by the profeffions and infinuating addrefs of the man, he was allowed to claim him as her future husband; nor could he refufe to acknowledge the claim. But if a father's authority interfered, no marriage could take place. The woman dropt her claim; and the man, on paying a fine, as fome compenfation for his guilt, was released from the obligation of marriage. This fingle exception to the validity of a union that had only been ratified by what Mr. Madan gravely calls God's holy and fimple ordinance,' overturns the whole fyftem of Thelyphthora even to the foundation. We have already challenged Mr. M. with this exception; and would readily join iffue with him on the ground it prepares. We have brought him to an unwilling conceffion
"and my poffeffions be injured. Do thou therefore redeem it, fince "thou haft no wife. I am unable to redeem it." Now this is the paffage which doth not even appear to fay one word favourable to Dr. Delany's reprefentation; and even puts quite a different fenfe on the paffage!-Oh, Mr. Madan! Mr. Madan!
in behalf of our argument; and have reduced him to this perplexing alternative, viz. either to give up the authority of the parent in the difpofal of a child under the Mofaic law, as what might have been violated without any punishment, or the incurring of any extraordinary fine; or to renounce his own darling tenet, and confider fomething more than the fimple act of carnal knowledge as neceffary to conftitute a legal, and a holy marriage. He cannot give up the former without breaking in on the firft and fundamental principles of the Jewish polity: and if he renounces the latter, he abandons the glorious work of refor mation which Thelyphthora was fent abroad to accomplish!
As a confirmation of our former remarks on Exod. xxii. 16, 17. [ If a man entice a maid that is not betrothed, and lie "with her, he fhall furely endow her to be his wife. If her "father utterly refufe to give her unto him, he fhall pay money "according to the dowry of virgins."] we will produce a paffage from Jofephus as explanatory of the text. Ο φθειρας παρθενον μηπω κατεγκυημένην αυτό γαμείτω. ην δε τῳ πατρι της κόρης μη δόξη συνοικίζειν αυτῷ, πεντήκοντα σίκλες την τιμήν της ύβρεως, xaтaßaλλETW. [Orig. lib. 4. cap. 8.] i. e. " If any man fhould "debauch a virgin not efpoufed or betrothed to another, let him her. BUT if the father should not think it proper to give her to him for cohabitation, let him lay down fifty fhe"kels, as a recompence for the injury he hath done her;" or more literally, as the reward of her difgrace." Thus all the ancient Jews understood the text; and indeed every commentator on the Old Teftament, till Mr. M. arose to make one part of it utterly difagree with the other; and the whole with the general fyftem of the Mofaic law.
Now, in order to imprefs the Reader's mind afresh with Mr. Madan's abfurdity, and to place his argument in a light that will fairly expofe itself, we think it proper to give the fubftance "If a man entice a maid,
of his comment on the above text.
he, by the very act which he enticed her to, really and truly "made her his wife; fince NOTHING more was required in the "fight of God than the act itfelf, to make her fo. But what if "her father should refuse to give her for a wife :-doth not his reShe was a wife, in"fufal difannul the union? By no means.
dependent of the father. What had been done, muft for ever "ftand good. It is out of his power to vacate GOD'S SIMPLE "ORDINANCE. But what becomes of the parent's authority ?"That muft yield to the higher obligation of the SIMPLE ORBut is neither the man nor the woman to be pu"nifhed? No. The dowry is to be paid. But was not THAT "to have been paid in cafe the father's confent had been gained? "Yes. Then where lies the difference in point of fin, or fhame, " or punishment, between obeying and disobeying the parent? There