29 JANUARY 1910, Page 49


Letter to a Dissenter. By Sir George Savile. (Cambridge University Press. is. net.)—Every one will remember how when James II. published his Declaration of Indulgence in 1687 he counted on enlisting the Dissenters as allies in his pro-Roman campaign. This was the occasion of Lord Halifax's famous "Letter to a Dissenter, upon his Majesty's late Glorious Declara- tion of Indulgences." (He was a Baronet, son of one of the first creation, was created a Baron shortly after the Restoration, an Earl in 1679, and a Marquis in 1682.) It has an intrinsic interest as an authoritative manifesto of the Whig policy of the time, and it would not be difficult to find applications of it to questions which interest us now. Lord Halifax asked the Dissenters of 1687: Will you help the King against the Church? and did his best to show them how impolitic it would be, though their own gain might seem to be great. So now some one might ask them: Will you purchase the destruction of Church schools by helping forward the separation of Ireland and the establishment of a hostile kingdom, or more probably a republic, within twenty -miles of the British shore ?