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The Scottish Reformation Its Epochs, Episodes, Leaders, and Distinctive Characteristics   By: (1822-1899)

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THE SCOTTISH REFORMATION

[Illustration: [Handwritten: yrs always cordially Alex F. Mitchell]]

THE SCOTTISH REFORMATION

Its Epochs, Episodes, Leaders, and Distinctive Characteristics

(Being the Baird Lecture for 1899)

BY THE LATE ALEXANDER F. MITCHELL, D.D., LL.D.

EMERITUS PROFESSOR OF CHURCH HISTORY IN ST. ANDREWS UNIVERSITY

EDITED BY

D. HAY FLEMING, LL.D.

WITH A BIOGRAPHICAL SKETCH OF THE AUTHOR BY JAMES CHRISTIE, D.D.

WILLIAM BLACKWOOD AND SONS EDINBURGH AND LONDON MDCCCC

PREFACE.

Few men have shown more indomitable application to an arduous duty, amid physical weakness and bodily pain, than did the author of these Lectures in their preparation and revision. In the MS. there are a goodly number of additions and minute alterations in his own hand some of them very tremulous, some of them in ink, some of them in pencil. He intended to revise them still more carefully ere they were published; but expressed the desire that, if he were not spared to do so, I would see them through the press. The Master, whom he served so long and so faithfully, having released him from the work he loved so well, and from the suffering he so patiently endured, the final revision has devolved upon me.

On the suggestion of Professor Robertson the book has been arranged in chapters. The sixth lecture having temporarily gone amissing before its delivery, Dr Mitchell prepared a rescension of it. The original and the rescension are now combined in chapter x. He intended to devote an extra lecture to Alesius, and another to Andrew Melville, but unfortunately was unable. The chapter on Alesius is therefore taken from two of his class lectures, some of the longer extracts being thrown into appendices, and a few passages being slightly compressed. This is at once the fullest and the best account of Alesius that has yet been published. The facts concerning Melville in chapter x. are supplemented to a small extent in the paper quoted in Appendix A.

Comparatively few of the authorities were entered in the MS. when it was placed in my hands. I have filled in many, and have taken care, in almost every instance where volume and page are given, to check the quotations with the originals. My notes, and my additions to Dr Mitchell's notes, are enclosed within square brackets; but when I have merely supplied authorities, they are not so distinguished. The list which he had drawn up of the works of Alesius was partly in an obsolete form of shorthand, which to me was quite undecipherable. Having been privileged to examine a good many of these rare treatises in various public libraries, I have been able, though only to an inconsiderable degree, to supplement the list; these additions being marked like those in the notes and other appendices. In revising the Lectures themselves, I have corrected a number of trifling slips, but have made no alteration of which Dr Mitchell would not have cordially approved had his attention been drawn to it.

In preparing the Lectures, Dr Mitchell availed himself of elaborate articles he had written at various times for periodicals and other publications. The present volume is valuable in several ways, not the least of these being that it embodies, on many obscure and important points, the matured views of one of the most competent and cautious of historical students of one who grudged no time and spared no labour in eliciting and elucidating the truth.

D. H. F.

December 1899.

[Illustration: (signed) yrs always cordially Alex. F. Mitchell]

THE SCOTTISH REFORMATION CONTENTS... Continue reading book >>




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