26 OCTOBER 1878, Page 13



Srn,—In one of the introductory paragraphs of last week's Spectator you charge Mr. Baldwin Brown with inconsistency, for "speaking with a severity amounting to moral indignation of prelates, spiritual peers, and tithe-supported churches ; and yet, on the following day, appearing equally indignant that one of the churches he had thus denounced did not send the Congregational Union any special message of fraternity and sympathy." I am not concerned to defend Mr. Baldwin Brown, nor, in- deed, does he stand in need of any humble champion. ship of mine ; but so far as I can judge from your paragraph (for I have not read the address), it seems to me that he may well have been perfectly consistent in reprehending, on the one day, prelates, spiritual peers, and tithe-supported churches," from the point of view of the aristocratic and schismatical ex- clusiveness which such State-Churchism, in his opinion, en- genders ; and on the following day, the embodiment of that ex- clusiveness in a living instance. With your usual breadth, you admit the fault in this particular case, saying, " No doubt it was a pity," but adding, " Surely it is a little inconsistent to smite so hard one day, and complain the next that the community smitten is not enthusiastically grateful for the stripes." Yes ; it was rather limping logic to cherish the futile expectation that the re- presentatives of a quasi " Church of David" (to use the Spectator's phrase) would be found possessed with the spirit of David himself when he said, " Let the righteous smite me, it shall be a kindness."—I am, Sir, &c.,