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fully persuaded) you displease God in obeying the bishop, it
is certain you do displease God by disobeying him."

4. For it is a part of our obedience not to judge his sen-
tence, that is, not to give judgment against him in a question
of difficulty, but to stand to his sentence: " Credas tibi salu-
tare, quicquid ille prseceperit ; nee de majorum sententia
judices, cujus officii est obedire et implere quee jussa sunt,"

d Lib. de Proecepto et Dispensatione.


said St. Jerome* in a like case : " It is your part to obey,
and to do what is commanded, and not to judge your judges ;
but to believe all that to be good which your prelate com-
mands you ;" meaning, when his command is instanced in
the matter of the Divine commandment. In things that are
plain and easy, every man can be a judge, because indeed
there needs none, for there is no question : but in things of
difficulty, and where evidently God is not dishonoured, it is
very much our duty to obey the Church.

5. Thus the Church hath power to command us to be
devout in our prayers, to be charitable to our brother, to
forgive our enemy, to be heartily reconciled to him, to
instruct the ignorant, to follow holiness, and to do jus-
tice, and to be at peace with all men ; and he that obeys
not, does walk disorderly, and may be used accordingly with
all the power the Church hath intrusted to her, according to
the merit of the cause : but it is certain he sins with a double
iniquity, that refuses God's commandment and the precept
of his spiritual superior ; for, in these things, every man can
exhort, but the bishop can command ; that is, he binds the
commandment of God by a new obligation and under a dis-
tinct sin, the sin of disobedience.


The Church hath Power to make Laws in such Things which are
Helps and apt Ministries and Advantages of necessary Duty.

1. THIS rule is expressly taught by St. Basil : a " Necessario
ea nos in memoriam debemus redigere, quae dicta sunt ab
apostolo, * Prophetias nolite spernere.' Ex his autem intelli-
gitur quod si quid nobis imperatum est, quod idem sit cum
mandate Domini, aut adjuvet, illud, tanquam voluntas Dei,
studiosius diligentiusque a nobis suscipi debet; We must
remember what the apostle said, l Despise not prophesy ings.'
But if any thing be commanded us which is all one with the
command of God, or may help it, it ought to be undertaken
by us with diligence and study, as if it were the will of God."
Thus if our bishop, in his precepts and sermons of chastity,

Ad Rusticum Monacb. a In Regul. Brevior. c. xiv.


command that the women go not to the public spectacles,
where are represented such things which would make Cato
blush, and Tuccia have looser thoughts, they are bound, in
conscience, to abstain from those impure societies ; and not
only from the lust, but from the danger. For in vain is it
that God should intrust the souls of the people to spiritual
rulers, and give them wisdom to do it, and commandment to
do it with diligence, and gifts of the Holy Spirit to enable
them to do it with advantage, if the people were not tied in
duty to decline those places and causes where and whence
they do usually perish.

2. And in pursuance of the episcopal authority, in the
like instances it was, that St. Chrysostoin held his pastoral
staff over the disobedient : for the Church had declared,
that, in the holy time of Lent, the people should live aus-
terely, and therefore he told them, at that time especially,
that they should not go to the public shows and theatres ;
and to the disobedient he adds this threatening : b " Sciant
omnes his criminibus obnoxii, si post hanc nostram admoni-
tionem in ea negligentia manserint, non toleraturos nos, sed
legibus ecclesiasticis usuros, et magna austeritate docturos
ne talia posthac negligant, neve tanto contemptu Divina
audiant eloquia ; Let all that are guilty of such crimes, know,
that if after this admonition they persist in this neglect, we
will not suffer it, but use the laws of the Church against them,
and shall teach them with great austerity, that hereafter they
do not hear the Divine sermons with so great contempt."

3. Upon the same account, the Church, in her sermons of
repentance, does usually, and hath authority to, enjoin actions
of internal and external significations and ministries of re-
pentance. In the Primitive Church the bishops did indict
fasting-days, and public litanies, and processions of solemn
supplications and prayers to be used in the times of public
danger and necessity. This we find in Tertullian ; c " Epi-
scopi universes plebi mandare jejunia assolent, non dico de
industria stipium conferendaruin, ut vestrse capturce est, sed
interdum et ex aliqua solicitudinis ecclesiastics causa ;
The bishops are wont to command fasting-days to all the
people, not for secular ends, but for ecclesiastical necessity
and advantage." For when God hath established an office

b Homil. vi. in Genes. c Jejuuio in Psyclucos.


and ministry, it is certain he made it sufficient to acquire all
the ends of its designation : since therefore the government
even of internal actions and a body or society of men must
suppose external acts, ministries, circumstances, and signifi-
cations, no man can from without govern that which is within,
unless he have power to govern that without which the
internal act cannot be done in public, in union and society.

4. And here comes in that rule of the law, ' The accessory
follows the nature of the principal;' which hath been so in-
finitely mistaken and abused by the pretences of Romanists
and presbytery for the establishing an empire ecclesiastical
in things belonging to themselves, not to God. For the soul
being the principal and the body its instrument, they hence
argue that they to whom the souls are committed, have
therefore a right to govern the body, because it is accessory
to the soul ; and if the body, then also the accessories of the
body, actions, circumstances, time, wealth, lands, and houses,
in order to the spiritual good of the soul : which proposition
because it is intolerable, it can never be the product of truth,
and therefore must be derived from a false understanding of
this true rule of the lawyers. But because, in its true mean-
ing, it serves to conduct many, and particularly this rule of
conscience, it is necessary that we know the true meaning
of it.

The Rule, ' The Accessory follows the Nature of the
Principal,' explicated.

5. Therefore for the understanding of it so far as can be
in order to our design, it is to be inquired, 1. How we shall
know which is the principal and which is the accessory ?
2. In what sense the accessory must follow the nature of the
principal ?

6. (1.) That which is principal to one purpose, is but the
accessory to another sometimes. If Titius hires my land and
builds a house upon it, the house is but the accessory, be-
cause it came after my land was in possession. But ifTitius
buys my house standing upon my own land, he buys the land
too ; for the land is but the accessory, and the house is the
principal : because the house being the purchase, it cannot
be at all but upon a foundation, and therefore the ground is
the accessory, and after the house in the intention of the


buyer. ' Villa fundum quserat,' is sometimes true ; but ordi-
narily, ' Fundus quaerit villam.'

7. (2.) That which is of the greatest value, is not always
the principal, but sometimes is the accessory. The picture
of Apollo upon a laurel board is much more precious than
the wood ; and yet if Apelles should take Lucian's wood and
draw the picture, Lucian will make bold with the board, and
consequently carry away the picture. A jewel set in gold
is much better than the gold, but yet the gold is the princi-
pal, because it was put there to illustrate and to adorn the
gold ; according to that of Ulpian, d " Semper cumquserimus
quid cui cedat, illud spectamus, quid cujus rei ornandse causa
adhibetur." And therefore if Caius, dying, leave me in
legacy his black cloth suit, I shall also receive the diamond
buttons that adorn it : because these were placed there to
adorn it ; and therefore are the accessory, because they are
* usu minores,' and wholly set there for the ministry of the
other. " Quod adhibetur alterius rei causa ; " that is princi-
pal, for whose sake the other was sent or put. And there-
fore it is no good argument to conclude, that the body is the
accessory, because the soul is more noble. " Cedent geminee
phialis vel lancibus inclusae auro argentove." The soul is,
indeed, a jewel set in gold ; but is, therefore, an accessory
to the body in some cases. He that buys the body of a
slave, hath right to all the ministries of the soul ; and the
man is bound to serve his master with a ready mind and a
good will ; and the soul is a ttgxXi4ty*tt of the body. The
body is first, and the soul comes afterward to give it life
and motion.

8. (3.) When two substances concur to the constitution
or integrity of a third, one is not the accessory to the other.
The eye is not the accessory to the head, nor the foot to the
leg, nor the hand to the arm ; for that only is an accessory,
'* quod alterius rei causa adhibetur aut accedit :" if it comes
in accidentally and be wholly for the other's sake, then it is
an accessory. Thus order, and decency, and circumstances of
time and place, are for the ministries and ornament of reli-
gion, and therefore are accessories. The outward act is the
less principal, and an accessory to the inward, for to the in-
ward it wholly ministers ; and consequently he that disposes

d Lib. Cum Aurum. 19, sect. Perveniamus ff. de Aur. et Argent. Leg.


of one, may also govern the other, because the less principal
is included in the more, and the less and the more have not
two administrations, because they have but one use. But
the soul and the body are two distinct substances of differ-
ing ministrations, acting to several and sometimes to con-
trary purposes ; they are parts of the same man, a better and
a worse, but not a principal and accessory, unless it be by
accident and in some uses and to some purposes ; and then
sometimes one, sometimes the other, is the principal. Con-
cerning which the rule is this :

9. (4.) Those things which of themselves are not, but, by
accident, may be made, accessories to a principal, are then
to be esteemed to be so, when they actually and wholly are
joined in use to the principal, and serve the end of the prin-
cipal, but have none of their own. Thus when the soul prays
passionately, if the lips move without a deliberate act of un-
derstanding, but obeying the fancy, the body in that case is
purely the accessory. I say, in that case : for if the body
receive a command to other purposes, as to attend upon the
prince at the same time, when the soul prays, in that case
they are both principals ; and neither of them accessory to
the other. And therefore although it will follow, that when
the body ministers to the actions of the soul wholly, and
hath no distinct work and office of its own in that action, he
that commands the soul can also command the body ; for
they are in that ministry but as one : yet it will not follow-
that when the body is not the accessory, it is not conjunct in
ministry, but does or can act distinctly and to other pur-
poses ; he that is of proper authority to command one, hath
authority also of the other. And the reason of this will help
well to explicate this whole inquiry. For,

10. (5.) He that pretends to a power over the accessory,
because he rules the principal, claims his power wholly for
its relation to the principal, and therefore it can be extended
no further than the relation ; but if that relative have also an
absolute and irrespective nature, operation, or design, it can-
not be governed in any thing of this, because of its relative
nature and conjunction in the other ; for there it is not
accessory. For it is the nature of the ewtxnxbv a!i<rtw ou
Kasovro; ,am/ TO dcrorlXse/Acc, xoti aiftfuvta a'ieiTai, " the conjunct
cause or reason ; when it is there, the work will follow : but


when it is away, there will be no event," says the philo-

11. (6.) It is not enough to make a thing to be acces-
sory, that it is designed for the use and ministry of another
that is principal ; but it must be actually applied : for till
then it is but a potential accessory, which gives no right, and
changes no nature, and produces no effect. Bridles and sad-
dles are made to be used with horses : but he that buys all
the horses in a fair, cannot claim all the saddles and bridles,
which are in the same fair to be sold ; because they are not
yet become the accessories, but are only designed to be so.
It is intended that the body should minister to the soul in
matters of religion ; but because it ministers also to other
actions of the soul, he that rules the soul, does not, by conse-
quence, rule the body, unless it be actually applied, and be
conjunct with the soul in the ministries of religion.

12. These may be sufficient to declare so much of the
nature of accessories, as is of use in our present questions.
The next inquiry is, What is the meaning of these words,
"The accessory follows the nature of the principal?" For it
cannot be meant that whatsoever is said of one, may be said
of the other; or whatsoever may be done to one, may be
done to the other. The rulers of souls have power to excom-
municate or to cut them off from the body of the Church,
which is the greatest spiritual power, and is after its own
manner a spiritual death. Now suppose the body be an
accessory to the soul, it will not follow that he that can cut
the soul off from the Church can cut the body also off from
the commonwealth. But the meaning is, that " duplici et
diverso jure censeri non debent," they who are joined in
one action, are to have one judgment, though according to
their respective measures. If the soul does well, so does the
body ministering to the soul. If it be good to pray, it is
good to appoint time and places to pray in, because without
time and place you cannot pray : if time and place be con-
tingent and irregular, so are our prayers : if our prayers be
solemn and fixd, so must they. And thus also it is in matter
of government. If the bishop is to guide the devotion of the
soul, he can also give rules to the body in all that which it
ministers to that action of the soul ; and when they two make
one complete action by way of principal and accessory, they


are the same one entire subject of government. But this is
to be extended no further. This passes not to the distinct
actions or ministries of the body, but is confined to that in
which it is, and so long as it is one agent with the soul :
neither can it pass to warrant any other impression upon
the body, but that it be commanded and conducted in the
pursuit of that action.

13. And, after all, though the rule be thus warily con-
ducted to keep it from running into error, yet neither thus is
it always true. " Cum principalis causa non consistat ple-
rumque ne ea quidem, quae sequuntur, locum habent," says
the law. 6 It is sometimes so, sometimes not. Money is
accessory to the man as clothes to the body ; but he that,
hath the man in cure, is not the ' curator bonorum ; ' and the
physician that gives physic to the body, and conducts the
regiment of health, is not master of his wardrobe ; and the
epigram derided Herod the empiric :

Clinicus Herodes trullam subduxerat aegro :
Deprensus dixit, ' Stulte, quid ergo bibis 1 ' f

because when he came to take away his patient's sickness, he
took away his plate. If the principal act be confirmed by an
accessory oath, though the principal act prove null and in-
valid in law, yet the man is tied by the remaining oath. A
man cannot offer to God an indifferent action or thing. And
therefore he that promises to God to walk three turns every
day, hath done nothing ; the act is null, and he is not obliged
to pay that to God : but if an oath did supervene, that must
stand, 8 though the principal of itself be null ; because every
oath, that can without sin be kept, must stand. The aliena-
tion of a minor's lands is rescinded by law, yet the obligation
and caution of the tutor for the accessory verification of the
principal sale, will stand ; because there is a reason that
separates the accessory from the principal : and the law
intending to rescind the translation of the dominion, not to
rescind the contract, leaves the principal loose, and the ac-
cessory bound. This is also thus in actions principal and
accessory, which the law calls ' personales et hypothecarias.'
Maevius dies, and divides his estate between Lucius and

e Ff. de Regul. Juris, lib. clxxviii. ; et lib. cxxix. ff. eod.
f Martial, ix. 97. Mattaire, p. 187.
* C. cum Contingat. extr. de.Ture Jur.


Lucullus ; but he was indebted ten talents, and for caution had
engaged some jewels. Lucius pays his five talents, and Lu-
cullus pays four of the other : the personal action of Lucius
is dissolved, but the accessory is not; for till Lucullus's per-
sonal or principal be taken off, the accessory and cautionary
remain upon them both : and this also hath a particular
reason, and so have all those cases in which this rule fails.

14. From whence I infer, that this thing is sometimes rea-
sonable, and sometimes unreasonable, but it is never necessary
but in one case ; and that is, when the accessory is necessary
and inseparable, either by reason of a natural or positive
conjunction. For some things are accessory by use and
customs, some by laws and commandments, some by the
nature of the thing. Now of the first two sorts the measures
are contingent and alterable : the laws sometimes declare a
thing to be accessory, and at other times it is not so ; and if,
by use, or contract, or custom, a thing be accessory, it ceases
to be so if the accessory be particularly excepted. As if I
buy a house, it is by custom concluded that I intend the gar-
den that is joined to it ; and he that sells a horse, sells his
bridle ; but if the garden be reserved, and the bridle be
excepted, the rule then is of no use.

15. Now to apply this to the present inquiries. 1 . Because
the body is not in the nature of the thing an inseparable, ne-
cessary accessory to the soul in spiritual actions and ministries;
but the soul can pray alone, and be charitable alone, and love
God alone ; and the body hath actions, and intentions, and
interests, which mingle not with that which the spiritual rulers
are to govern ; therefore it cannot be inferred, that the body
is subject in all things to them who govern souls.

16. But, 2. It does follow, and may by force of this rule
be inferred, that they who are to govern the religion and spi-
ritual actions of the soul, can also govern the actions of the
body, which minister immediately and necessarily to the ne-
cessary actions of the soul : and therefore because it is a duty
that we communicate in the communion of saints, when that
duty is actually and of necessity to be done, the bishop hath
power to command the bodies of men to be present in Christ-
ian assemblies, according to the precept of the apostle ;
*' Neglect not the assembling of yourselves together."

17. And yet further, to come home to the present rule,


there are several degrees of necessity, and several reasons
of it. Some things are necessary for life, and some for
health. Some are necessary for single Christians, some things
are necessary for societies ; some things are necessary in
private, and some in public ; some things are for order, and
some for precise duty ; some things are absolutely, and some
are but respectively, and, in order to certain ends, necessary.
The body is an accessory to the soul, ' atque eodem jure cen-
sendum, to be judged by the same laws,' governed by the
same persons, subject to the same sentence and conduct, not
only in the things of absolute necessity, but even in things
of great advantage ; not only in private necessity, which is
always indispensable, but even in public necessities of the
Church, in which there is greater latitude and more liberty :
and the reason is, because even these lesser degrees of ne-
cessity are required of us by Divine commandment ; and it
is not only commanded to us to do that which is lawful, but
that also ' which is of good report ; ' not only that we glorify
God, but that our brethren be edified. And in proportion
to this, it is required of the guides of souls that ' they
give good account of them ; ' but it is required of us also that
we so comport ourselves that " they may do it with joy : " h
which cannot be supposed, if their power be kept within the
bounds of a simply and indispensably necessary internal reli-
gion : it cannot be done without prosperous circumstances
and advantages of religion : in these, therefore, if spiritual
guides have not power to give commands, they have not all
that is necessary by all the kinds of necessity which God made.

18. But this rule we see verified by authentic precedents.
For the apostles at Jerusalem indeed thought fit to impose
nothing but those ' necessary things ' which are specified in
their decretal; but St. Paul used also this authority by the
measures of the present rule, and commanded beyond the
limits of absolute necessity, even that which he judged con-
venient ; and verifies his authority in his Epistle to Philemon ;'
" I might be much bold in Christ to enjoin thee that which
is convenient : " and this he actually did to the Corinthian
Church, commanding that " all things should be done
decently and in order."

19. Now, although it be true that in these things the

h Heb. xiii. 17. ' Pliilern. 8.


apostle had some advantages which the bishops in succession
had not; he had an infallible spirit, and what he called
convenient, was so indeed ; and he had converted Philemon,
he was his father in Christ ; and he was one of the pillars
upon which Christ built the Church, and he was to lay the
foundation of an everlasting building : yet, because the in-
stance to the Corinthian Church was such which was of a
perpetual reason, and it would be for ever necessary that
things should be done in the Church " decently and in order,"
and the question of decency would for ever have variety and
flux, succession and a relative uncertainty, it was necessary
that of this there should be perpetual judges and perpetual
dictators; and these can be no other but the rulers of the
Church, who have the same power as the apostles had in this,
though not so many advantages of power. When the bishops
judge truly concerning necessity, and such decencies and
reasonablenesses as are next to necessity, they can enjoin
them, only they cannot judge so surely : and therefore,
although there may be more causes of laying aside their
commands, yet it is never lawful without cause.

20. But this is not to be extended to such decencies as
are only ornament, but is to be limited to such as only
rescue from confusion. The reason is, because the prelates
and spiritual guides cannot do their duty unless things be
so orderly that there be no confusion, much less can they do
it with joy ; and so far their power does extend. For although
that is not required of the governors, but of the people, that
the ruler's office be done with joy; yet, because it is required
of the people, they sin if they hinder it ; therefore the rulers
have no power to enjoin it. But if he can go beyond this
limit, then it can have no natural limit, but may extend to
sumptuousness, to ornaments of churches, to rich utensils,
to splendour, to majesty : for all that is decent enough, and
in some circumstances very fit. But because this is too
subject to abuse, and gives a secular power into the hands of
bishops, and an authority over men's estates and fortunes,
and is not necessary for souls, and no part of spiritual
government, it is more than Christ gave to his ministers.

21. This also is to be added : that because this power is
derived to spiritual rulers upon the account of reason and
experience of things, and the duty of the people, that the


rulers should be enabled to give an account of their charges
with joy, therefore it is only left to the people to do it or not,

Online LibraryJeremy TaylorThe whole works of the Right Rev. Jeremy Taylor (Volume 13) → online text (page 57 of 61)