John Henry Newman.

Prose types in Newman; a book of selections from the writings online

. (page 1 of 14)
Online LibraryJohn Henry NewmanProse types in Newman; a book of selections from the writings → online text (page 1 of 14)
Font size
QR-code for this ebook






















THE selections from Cardinal Newman brought
together in this volume are meant to furnish mate-
rial for the study of the so-called forms of discourse
or recognized types of literary expression. This
study has come to have a place of importance in the
English course, both in high school and in college,
and hence any method that will help to make it prac-
ticable as a class-room exercise has a claim on the
English teacher's attention. The Questions and
Studies accompanying the selections emphasize prin-
ciples and processes in the literary forms as such
rather than characteristics of diction and style.
These latter fall outside the scope of the criticism
intended, except in cases where they bear directly
on the theory of the type under study. The rhetori-
cal study of the five recognized types of composi-
tion, as illustrated in the texts herewith presented,
represents, therefore, the primary purpose of the
volume. At the same time the selections are suffi-
ciently diverse in content and style to give the stu-
dent an insight into the varying moods of a great
and classic prose.


1. THE first legitimate step in the critical study
of any piece of literature is mastery of the author's
meaning. Hence the meaning of the text, whenever
in doubt, should be cleared up promptly by reflec-
tion, class-room discussion, or other means.

2. A word as to the Glossary and the principle
on which it is compiled. Obviously the proper
names occurring in a text for English study ought
not to remain merely names, without any sugges-
tion to the student of the realities for which they
stand. On the other hand, to put the student thumb-
ing books of reference for the needed information
has the disadvantage, to say nothing of the time
consumed in the process, of distracting him from
the chief purpose of his study, which is to improve
himself in English and not to acquire special infor-
mation. Hence the Glossary aims to furnish some
little information in regard to proper names and al-
lusions, thus saving the student time and labor which
can be spent to better advantage on the text itself.
And here it may be noted that the full import
of names is often lost on the immature student
or beginner in literature. It is wide, sympathetic



reading and, perhaps, experience of life that invest
certain names with their true significance ; and hence
no amount of encyclopedic detail heaped around
them for the occasion by the industrious student will
enable him to elicit from them the same significance
and charm which they convey to the experienced

Nothing of what has just been said is to be inter-
preted as discounting the value to the student of a
habit of self-reliant research. To be able to use
books of reference with intelligence and dispatch
should be part of the equipment of every student,
and therefore frequent practice both in and outside
the class-room calculated to develop such power will
not be overlooked in a well-considered curriculum.

3. The Questions and Studies bear particularly
on the principles and methods of the five character-
istic literary types. Hence preceding the several
groups of extracts will be found summaries of prin-
ciples and definitions, the purpose of these sum-
maries being to furnish the student with a compact
critical apparatus for ready use. The Questions and
Studies, it is hardly necessary to say, indicate a
method of study rather than exhaust even remotely
the possibilities of criticism as regards the texts
under study. Suggestive in character, they are
meant to open up to the instructor the way to still
further questioning and analysis along similar lines.

4. The Topical Analyses (p. 217) will be of serv-
ice for an occasional review of rhetorical principles


or for a systematic study of these principles as illus-
trated in one or more of the selections.

5. Where it is thought better to emphasize the
general elements of composition rather than specific
literary types, the selections may be studied for such
particulars as choice of words, sentence and para-
graph structure, characteristics of style, etc. A
method suitable for this purpose will be found in
Cardinal Newman's Literature, edited by G. J. Gar-
raghan, SJ. (Schwartz, Kirwin and Fauss).

An asterisk occurring in the text indicates that
the name, phrase, or quotation so marked will be
found in the Glossary. Names occurring more than
once are starred only at their first occurrence in
the text.



JOHN HENRY CARDINAL NEWMAN, 1801-1890 . . . xiii

The Forms of Discourse i



I. The Battle of Lepanto 5

II. He Shall not Lose his Reward 10

III. Gurta and Juba 20

IV. The Northmen hi England and Ireland . . 32
V. The Death of St. Bede 38


VI. Attica 47

VII. Sicca Veneria 51

VHI. The Locust Plague 58

DC. Jucundus at Supper 71

X. The Conversion of England 83

XI. The First Synod of Westminster 86

XH. Callista's Dream 90


XIII. The Idea of God 99

XIV. The Poetry of Monachism 107

XV. What is a University ? 113

XVI. The Definition of a Gentleman 121

XVII. Accuracy of Mind 126

XVIII. St. Philip Neri 131

XIX. The Mass 138

XX. The Lion and the Painter 142





XXI. Theology a Branch of Knowledge .... 151

XXII. Intellectual Culture not Mere Knowledge . 157

XXIII. The Social State of Catholic Countries no

Prejudice to the Sanctity of the Church 171

XXIV. States and Constitutions 177

XXV. " All who Take Part with the Apostle are

on the Winning Side " 185


XXVI. An Appeal to the Laity 195

XXVII. Remembrance of Past Mercies 202

XXVIII. God's Will the End of Life 206

XXIX. The Assumption 210

XXX. The Parting of Friends 215




1801 Born in the city of London, February 21, his parents
being John Newman, a banker, and Jemima Fou-
drinier, who was of Huguenot descent.

1808 Attended school at Ealing, near London.

1815 Published three periodicals, The Spy, The Anti-Spy,

and The Beholder, the last running through forty

1816 Matriculated in December at Trinity College, Ox-


1819 With a friend, Mr. Bowden, brought out The Un-
dergraduate, a periodical patterned after Addison's

1821 Made a Fellow of Oriel, April 12. "The turning-
point of his life and of all days the most memor-

1824 Ordained in the Anglican Church, June 13, and be-

came Curate of St. Clement's, Oxford, where he
remained two years.

1825 Appointed Vice-Principal of Alban Hall by his

friend, Dr. Whately.

1828 Made Vicar of St. Mary's, the University Church,
in the pulpit of which he preached his Parochial
Sermons. When published " they beat all other
sermons out of the market, as Scott's tales beat
all other stories."

1832 Resigned his tutorship at Oriel and went in De-
cember with Hurrel Froude on a long voyage
around the Mediterranean. Wrote on this voyage


eighty-five poems in which " the Tractarian Move-
ment . . . sprang forth armed in lyrical strains."
This " sea-cycle " includes Lead, Kindly Light,
written while Newman's ship lay becalmed for a
week in the Straits of Bonifacio, near Sicily.
Near death's door with fever at Castro Giovanni,
he cried out, " I shall not die. I have not sinned
against the light ! "

1833 Returned (July 9) to England, where, as he said,
he had a work to do. Five days later, Sunday,
July 14, Keble, in his sermon at St. Mary's on
" National Apostasy," inaugurated the Oxford
Movement, the aim of which was to rid the An-
glican Church of state interference and restore
within it the " Church of the Fathers." Newman,
as his contribution to the movement, began to issue
Tracts for the Times.

1841 Published Tract 90, a virtual defense of Catholic
doctrine. The tract caused a storm, and Newman,
mildly censured by his Bishop, subsequently re-
tired into lay communion at Littlemore.

1845 Received into the Catholic Church, October 9, by

Fr. Dominic, an Italian Passionist.

1846 Ordained a priest in Rome.

1847 Returned to England with permission from Pius

IX to establish there the Oratory of St. Philip


1850 Founded the London Oratory.
1852 Preached his best known sermon, The Second

Spring, July 21, in St. Mary's College, Oscott, on

the occasion of the First Provincial Synod of

1852 Delivered in Dublin nine discourses on University

Teaching (first part of The Idea of a University).
1854 Appointed Rector of the Catholic University in



1854- Wrote ten " occasional lectures and essays addressed
1858 to the members of the Catholic University "

(second part of The Idea of a University).
1858 Retired from the rectorship of the Catholic Uni-

1864 Wrote the Apologia pro Vita Sua, his famous auto-

biography, which appeared in seven parts between
April 21 and June 2.

1865 Wrote The Dream of Gerontius.

1879 Created a Cardinal-deacon by Leo XIII. Chose for
his cardinalitial mottc a sentence from St. Fran-
cis de Sales, " Cor ad cor loquitur " (" Heart
speaketh to heart").

1890 Died, August n, at the Oratory, Edgbaston, near
Birmingham, England. His epitaph, written by
himself, reads, " Ex umbris et imaginibus in veri-
tatem " (" Coming out of shadows into realities ").

The editor is indebted to Barry's Newman for data
embodied in the foregoing outline of Newman's life.



CONVERSATION under normal conditions runs
along at haphazard without pretense to unity or
plan. A great variety of topics may be covered,
but no unifying principle binds them together. On
the other hand, discourse or organized speech, how-
ever varied its contents, is a structural unit, all its
members serving a common end and knit together
by the bond of a common underlying theme. The
forms of discourse may be reduced to five : Narra-
tion, Description, Exposition, Argumentation, and
Persuasion. Of these, Narration and Description
address themselves in the main to the imagination
and emotions, Exposition and Argumentation to
the intellect, and Persuasion to the will. 1

1 The editor of this book of selections has not hesitated
to apply the term " prose " to the composition-types herein
illustrated, though obviously these types in their fullest
range transcend the division of literature into poetry
and prose.


1. Definition. Narration is a form of discourse
which sets forth in sequence the particulars of a
transaction or event.

Narration postulates a group of particulars.
What happens instantaneously without succession
of details cannot in any true sense of the term be
narrated. Hence the simplest narrated incident
must show some succession of details, however triv-
ial. Narration thus finds its proper material in
occurrences of whatever kind, provided these have
lasted through successive intervals of time and show
some diversity of detail. The first of all literary
instincts is the instinct to narrate ; as a consequence,
the great national literatures owe their beginning
in every instance to the story-teller's art. 1

2. Elements. The texture of most narrative
is woven of four distinct elements: (a) the thing
that happened the element of Plot; (b) the per-
son or persons to whom it happened the element
of Character; (c) the place where it happened
the element of Place; (d) the time when it hap-
pened the element of Time.

1 For suggestions in preparing the outlines of rhetorical
principles, the editor is indebted to Genung and other
sources of rhetorical theory.


(a) The Element of Plot. We may use the term
broadly as equivalent to incident or event, and then
every narrative has a plot inasmuch as every narra-
tive tells something that happened. But the term
has a narrower and more technical sense. Thus
the newspaper account of a fire, though it answers
to the definition of narrative composition, lacks plot
in the technical sense. The flashing headlines let
us know at the outset the final outcome of the in-
cident in loss of life and property or in other effects.
To define, then, the more restricted meaning of the
term, any grouping of the particulars of an event
with a view to arouse and sustain the reader's inter-
est and keep him in suspense as to the ultimate issue
of the action may be called a plot. To help us real-
ize the nature of plot various analogies have been
suggested. Thus plot may be conceived either as a
problem or puzzle to be solved, or as a gathering
of threads into a knot to be gradually untied, or as
a struggle of the leading character or characters of
the action with an obstacle.

(b) The Element of Character. The plot of a
narrative is generally dovetailed into the words and
actions of human beings. The vitality of good nar-
rative depends in most cases on plot-interest and
character-interest. As a rule one or the other pre-
dominates, but both are necessary to the effect

^Dialogue serves (a) to portray character and (b)
to carry on the action. To express variety of char-


acter it aims at variety of style, using for this end
dialect, mannerism, varying levels of vocabulary and
diction, and whatever devices of expression may
serve to mark off one character from another.

(c, d) The Elements of Time and Place. To-
gether they make what is called the Situation, i.e.,
the background or setting of the narrative. What
scenery and stage-effects do for a play, description
does for a written narrative. It pictures with more
or less vividness of effect a background of time and
place for the incidents of the plot.

3. Structure. Well-organized narrative con-
forms to the three great structural principles of
Unity, Coherence, and Emphasis or Mass. Unity,
which regards the selection of details, requires that
only those details be embodied in the narrative
which contribute, directly or indirectly, to develop
its main idea or theme. Coherence, which regards
the arrangement of details, requires that these be
ordered according to a rational principle of se-
quence, whether the principle be one of logic or
time-succession or other kind. Finally Emphasis
or Mass, which is also a principle of arrangement,
requires that important details be accorded posi-
tions of advantage in the text. Such positions are
notably the beginning and the end.

4. Style. Force is the typical quality of narra-
tive style as clearness is of expository and argu-
mentative style. Narrative aims mostly to interest,
as exposition aims mostly to inform and argumen-


tation to convince. The usual appeal of narrative
is therefore to the imagination and emotions.
Hence under the various guises of energy, vigor,
movement, etc., force, the emotional element of
style, is the most vital quality of narrative com-
position. Chief among helps to force of style is
the free use of concrete, specific, suggestive terms.


i. IT is not to be supposed that a Saint* upon
whom lay " the solicitude* of all the Churches "
should neglect the tradition, which his predecessors
of so many centuries had bequeathed to him, of zeal
and hostility against the Turkish power. He was
only six years on the Pontifical throne, and the
achievement of which I am going to speak was
among his last; he died the following year. At
this time the Ottoman armies were continuing their
course of victory; they had just taken Cyprus,*
with the active cooperation of the Greek population
of the island, and were massacring the Latin no-
bility and clergy, and mutilating and flaying alive
the Venetian governor ; yet the Saint found it im-
possible to move Christendom to its own defense.
How, indeed, was that to be done, when half Chris-
tendom had become Protestant, and secretly, per-
haps, felt as the Greeks felt, that the Turk was its
friend and ally? In such a quarrel, England,
France, and Germany were out of the question. At


length, however, with great effort, he succeeded in
forming a holy league between himself, King
Philip* of Spain, and the Venetians ; Don* John of
Austria, King Philip's half brother, was appointed
commander-in-chief of the forces; and Colonna*
admiral. The treaty was signed on the 24th of
May, but such was the cowardice and jealousy of
the parties concerned, that the autumn had arrived
and nothing of importance was accomplished. With
difficulty were the armies united; with difficulty
were the dissensions of the commanders brought
to a settlement. Meanwhile the Ottomans were
scouring the Gulf of Venice, blockading the ports,
and terrifying the city itself.

2. But the holy Pope was securing the success
of his cause by arms of his own, which the Turks
understood not. He had been appointing a Triduo*
of supplication at Rome, and had taken part in the
procession himself. He had proclaimed a jubilee
to the whole Christian world, for the happy issue
of the war. He had been interesting the Holy Vir-
gin in his cause. He presented to his admiral, after
High Mass in his chapel, a standard of red damask,
embroidered with a crucifix, and with the figures
of St. Peter and St. Paul, and the legend, In* hoc
signo vinces. Next, sending to Messina,* where the
allied fleet lay, he assured the general-in-chief and
the armament, that " if, relying on divine, rather
than on human help, they attacked the enemy, God
would not be wanting to His own cause. He au-


gured a prosperous and happy issue; not on any
light or random hope, but on a divine guidance,
and by the anticipations of many holy men." More-
over, he enjoined the officers to look to the good
conduct of their troops; to repress swearing, gam-
ing, riot, and plunder, and thereby to render them
more deserving of victory. Accordingly, a fast of
three days was proclaimed for the fleet, beginning
with the Nativity* of Our Lady ; all the men went
to confession and communion, and appropriated to
themselves the plentiful indulgences which the Pope
attached to the expedition. Then they moved across
the foot of Italy to Corfu*, with the intention of
presenting themselves at once to the enemy ; being
disappointed in their expectations, they turned back
to the Gulf of Corinth;* and there at length, on the
7th of October, they found the Turkish fleet, half-
way between Lepanto* and the Echiniades* on the
north, and Patras* in the Morea* on the south;
and, though it was towards evening, strong in
faith and zeal, they at once commenced the

3. The night before the battle, and the day itself,
aged as he was, and broken with a cruel malady,
the Saint had passed in the Vatican in fasting and
prayer. All through the Holy City the Monasteries
and the Colleges were in prayer too. As the even-
ing advanced, the Pontifical Treasurer asked an
audience of the Sovereign Pontiff on an important
matter. Pius was in his bed-room and began to


converse with him ; when suddenly he stopped the
conversation, left him, threw up the window, and
gazed up into heaven. Then closing it again, he
looked gravely at the official, and said, " This is no
time for business ; go, return thanks to the Lord
God. In this very hour our fleet has engaged the
Turkish, and is victorious ! " As the Treasurer went
out, he saw him fall on his knees before the altar
in thankfulness and joy.

4. And a most memorable victory it was; up-
wards of 30,000 Turks are said to have lost their
lives in the engagement, and 3500 were made
prisoners. Almost their whole fleet was taken. I
quote from Protestant authorities when I say that
the Sultan, on the news of the calamity, neither
ate, nor drank, nor showed himself, nor saw any-
one for three days ; that it was the greatest blow
which the Ottomans had had sinqe Timour's* vic-
tory over Bajazet,* a century and a half before;
nay, that it was the turning-point in the Turkish
history, and that though the Sultans have had iso-
lated successes since, yet from that day they un-
deniably and constantly declined ; that they have
lost their prestige and their self-confidence; and
that the victories gained over them since, are but
the complements and the reverberations of the
overthrow at Lepanto. (The Turks in Historical
Sketches, vol. i, p. 155.)


Questions and Studies

Indicate briefly the four elements of Plot, Char-
acter, Time, Place. Unity. Is there a strict exclu-
sion of irrelevant details? Unity in narrative is
secured not so much by the dominance of one main
incident as by the dominance of one main character.
What is the dominant character here? With refer-
ence to what character in particular is the action
told? Suggest other viewpoints than the one actu-
ally used. Test 2 for unity. What is the topic-
sentence? Coherence. Is there a departure from
strict chronological order? A desired rhetori-
cal effect is often secured by compromise between
conflicting rhetorical principles. Here one struc-
tural principle is slightly sacrificed to the advan-
tage of another. Explain. Emphasis. Is there
an effective beginning? an effective end? Are the
details well chosen with a view to arouse and main-
tain interest? Movement is felt to be the vitalizing
quality of a good narrative style. Helps to move-
ment are : a live beginning, omission of unnecessary
details, suspense maintained to a climax, a brisk
style. Does the passage use these or similar helps ?


THERE was no room for doubt or for delay.
" What is to become of you, Callista* ? " he said ;
" they will tear you to pieces."

" Fear nothing for me, father," she answered, " I
am one of them. They know me. Alas, / am no
Christian! / have not abjured their rites; but you,
lose not a moment."

" They are still at some distance," he said,
" though the wind gives us merciful warning of
their coming."

He looked about the room, and took up the books
of Holy Scripture which were on the shelf. " There
is nothing else," he said, " of special value here.
Agellius* could not take them. Here, my child, I
am going to show you a great confidence. To few
persons, not Christians, would I show it. Take this
blessed parchment; it contains the earthly history
of our Divine Master. Here you will see whom
we Christians love. Read it; keep it safely; sur-
render it, when you have the opportunity, into Chris-
tian keeping. My mind tells me I am not wrong
in lending it to you." He handed to her the Gospel
of St. Luke, while he put the other two volumes
into the folds of his own tunic.



" One word more," she said ; " your name, should
I want you."

He took up a piece of chalk from the shelf, and
wrote upon the wall in distinct characters,


" Thascius Caecilius Cyprianus,* Bishop of Carthage.* "

Hardly had she read the inscription, when the
voices of several men were heard in the very neigh-
borhood of the cottage; and hoping to effect a
diversion in favor of Caecilius, and being at once
unsuspicious of danger to herself, and careless of
her life, she ran quickly forward to meet them.
Caecilius ought to have taken to flight without a
moment's delay, but a last sacred duty detained
him. He knelt down and took the pyx from his
bosom. He had eaten nothing that day; but even
if otherwise, it was a crisis which allowed him to
consume the sacred species without fasting. He
hastily opened the golden case, adored the blessed
sacrament, and consumed it, purifying its recep-
tacle, and restoring it to its hiding-place. Then
he rose at once, and left the cottage.

He looked about; Callista was nowhere to be
seen. She was gone; so much was certain, no
enemy was in sight: it only remained for him to
make off too. In the confusion he turned in the
wrong direction ; instead of making off at the back
of the cottage from which the voices had scared

1 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 11 12 13 14

Online LibraryJohn Henry NewmanProse types in Newman; a book of selections from the writings → online text (page 1 of 14)