Apologia Pro Vita Sua, being a History of his Religious Opinions, by John Henry Cardinal Newman, Revised edition of 1865.
Annotation of text (marginal notes, end notes designated /a/, /b/, /c/ etc., and inserted notes in curly brackets) copyright ©2010 David Trumbull for Agathon Associates. All Rights Reserved.
I. Letters and Papers of the Author Used in the Course of this Work.
II. Cardinal Newman's Works.
N.B.—This List, originally made in 1865, is now corrected up to 1890.
VOLS. 1-8. Parochial and Plain Sermons. (Longmans.)
9. Sermons on Subjects of the Day. (Longmans.)
10. University Sermons. (Longmans.)
11. Sermons to Mixed Congregations. (Burns and Oates.)
12. Occasional Sermons. (Burns and Oates.)
13. On the Doctrine of Justification. (Longmans.)
14. On the Development of Christian Doctrine. (Longmans.)
15. On the Idea of a University. (Longmans.)
16. An Essay in Aid of a Grammar of Assent. (Longmans.)
17. Two Essays on Miracles. 1. Of Scripture. 2. Of Ecclesiastical History. (Longmans.)
18. Discussions and Arguments. 1. How to accomplish it. 2. The Antichrist of the Fathers. 3. Scripture and the Creed. 4. Tamworth Reading-Room. 5. Who's to blame? 6. An Argument for Christianity. (Longmans.)
19, 20. Essays Critical and Historical. 2 vols. 1. Poetry. 2. Rationalism. 3. Apostolical Tradition. 4. De la Mennais. 5. Palmer on Faith and Unity. 6. St. Ignatius. 7. Prospects of the Anglican Church. 8. The Anglo-American Church. 9. Countess of Huntingdon. 10. Catholicity of the Anglican Church. 11. The Antichrist of Protestants. 12. Milman's Christianity. 13. Reformation of the Eleventh Century. 14. Private Judgment. 15. Davison. 16. Keble. (Longmans.)
21-23. Historical Sketches. 3 vols. 1. The Turks. 2. Cicero. 3. Apollonius. 4. Primitive Christianity. 5. Church of the Fathers. 6. St. Chrysostom. 7. Theodoret. 8. St. Benedict. 9. Benedictine Schools. 10. Universities. 11. Northmen and Normans. 12. Medieval Oxford. 13. Convocation of Canterbury. (Longmans.)
24. The Arians of the Fourth Century. (Longmans.)
25, 26. Annotated Translation of Athanasius. 2 vols. (Longmans.)
27. Tracts. 1. Dissertatiunculć. 2. On the Text of the Seven Epistles of St. Ignatius. 3. Doctrinal Causes of Arianism. 4. Apollinarianism. 5. St. Cyril's Formula. 6. Ordo de Tempore. 7. Douay Version of Scripture. (Burns and Oates.)
28, 29. The Via Media of the Anglican Church. 2 vols. with Notes. Vol. I. Prophetical Office of the Church. Vol. II. Occasional Letters and Tracts. (Longmans.)
30, 31. Certain Difficulties felt by Anglicans in Catholic Teaching Considered. 2 vols. Vol. I. Twelve Lectures. Vol. II. Letters to Dr. Pusey concerning the Bl. Virgin, and to the Duke of Norfolk in Defence of the Pope and Council. (Longmans.)
32. Present Position of Catholics in England. (Longmans.)
33. Apologia pro Vita Sua. (Longmans.)
34. Verses on Various Occasions. (Longmans.)
35. Loss and Gain. (Burns and Oates.)
36. Callista. (Longmans.)
37. The Dream of Gerontius. (Longmans.)
¶ It is scarcely necessary to say that the Author submits all that he has written to the judgment of the Church, whose gift and prerogative it is to determine what is true and what is false in religious teaching.
III. Letter of Approbation and Encouragement from the Bishop of the Diocese of Birmingham, Dr. Ullathorne.
"Bishop's House, June 2, 1864.
"My dear Dr. Newman,—
"It was with warm gratification that, after the close of the Synod yesterday, I listened to the Address presented to you by the clergy of the diocese, and to your impressive reply. But I should have been little satisfied with the part of the silent listener, except on the understanding with myself that I also might afterwards express to you my own sentiments in my own way.
"We have now been personally acquainted, and much more than acquainted, for nineteen years, during more than sixteen of which we have stood in special relation of duty towards each other. This has been one of the singular blessings which God has given me amongst the cares of the Episcopal office. What my feelings of respect, of confidence, and of affection have been towards you, you know well, nor should I think of expressing them in words. But there is one thing that has struck me in this day of explanations, which you could not, and would not, be disposed to do, and which no one could do so properly or so authentically as I could, and which it seems to me is not altogether uncalled for, if every kind of erroneous impression that some persons have entertained with no better evidence than conjecture is to be removed.
"It is difficult to comprehend how, in the face of facts, the notion should ever have arisen that during your Catholic life, you have been more occupied with your own thoughts than with the service of religion and the work of the Church. If we take no other work into consideration beyond the written productions which your Catholic pen has given to the world, they are enough for the life's labour of another. There are the Lectures on Anglican Difficulties, the Lectures on Catholicism in England, the great work on the Scope and End of University Education, that on the Office and Work of Universities, the Lectures and Essays on University Subjects, and the two Volumes of Sermons; not to speak of your contributions to the Atlantis, which you founded, and to other periodicals; then there are those beautiful offerings to Catholic literature, the Lectures on the Turks, Loss and Gain, and Callista, and though last, not least, the Apologia, which is destined to put many idle rumours to rest, and many unprofitable surmises; and yet all these productions represent but a portion of your labour, and that in the second half of your period of public life.
"These works have been written in the midst of labour and cares of another kind, and of which the world knows very little. I will specify four of these undertakings, each of a distinct character, and any one of which would have made a reputation for untiring energy in the practical order.
"The first of these undertakings was the establishment of the congregation of the Oratory of St. Philip Neri—that great ornament and accession to the force of English Catholicity. Both the London and the Birmingham Oratory must look to you as their founder and as the originator of their characteristic excellences; whilst that of Birmingham has never known any other presidency.
"No sooner was this work fairly on foot than you were called by the highest authority to commence another, and one of yet greater magnitude and difficulty, the founding of a University in Ireland. After the Universities had been lost to the Catholics of these kingdoms for three centuries, every thing had to be begun from the beginning: the idea of such an institution to be inculcated, the plan to be formed that would work, the resources to be gathered, and the staff of superiors and professors to be brought together. Your name was then the chief point of attraction which brought these elements together. You alone know what difficulties you had to conciliate and what to surmount, before the work reached that state of consistency and promise, which enabled you to return to those responsibilities in England which you had never laid aside or suspended. And here, excuse me if I give expression to a fancy which passed through my mind.
"I was lately reading a poem, not long published, from the MSS. De Rerum Natura, by Neckham, the foster-brother of Richard the Lion-hearted. He quotes an old prophecy, attributed to Merlin, and with a sort of wonder, as if recollecting that England owed so much of its literary learning to that country; and the prophecy says that after long years Oxford will pass into Ireland—'Vada boum suo tempore transibunt in Hiberniam.' When I read this, I could not but indulge the pleasant fancy that in the days when the Dublin University shall arise in material splendour, an allusion to this prophecy might form a poetic element in the inscription on the pedestal of the statue which commemorates its first Rector.
"The original plan of an Oratory did not contemplate any parochial work, but you could not contemplate so many souls in want of pastors without being prompt and ready at the beck of authority to strain all your efforts in coming to their help. And this brings me to the third and the most continuous of those labours to which I have alluded. The mission in Alcester Street, its church and schools, were the first work of the Birmingham Oratory. After several years of close and hard work, and a considerable call upon the private resources of the Fathers who had established this congregation, it was delivered over to other hands, and the Fathers removed to the district of Edgbaston, where up to that time nothing Catholic had appeared. Then arose under your direction the large convent of the Oratory, the church expanded by degrees into its present capaciousness, a numerous congregation has gathered and grown in it; poor schools and other pious institutions have grown up in connexion with it, and, moreover, equally at your expense and that of your brethren, and, as I have reason to know, at much inconvenience, the Oratory has relieved the other clergy of Birmingham all this while by constantly doing the duty in the poor-house and gaol of Birmingham.
"More recently still, the mission and the poor school at Smethwick owe their existence to the Oratory. And all this while the founder and father of these religious works has added to his other solicitudes the toil of frequent preaching, of attendance in the confessional, and other parochial duties.
"I have read on this day of its publication the seventh part of the Apologia, and the touching allusion in it to the devotedness of the Catholic clergy to the poor in seasons of pestilence reminds me that when the cholera raged so dreadfully at Bilston, and the two priests of the town were no longer equal to the number of cases to which they were hurried day and night, I asked you to lend me two fathers to supply the place of other priests whom I wished to send as a further aid. But you and Father St. John preferred to take the place of danger which I had destined for others, and remained at Bilston till the worst was over.
"The fourth work which I would notice is one more widely known. I refer to the school for the education of the higher classes, which at the solicitation of many friends you have founded and attached to the Oratory. Surely after reading this bare enumeration of work done, no man will venture to say that Dr. Newman is leading a comparatively inactive life in the service of the Church.
"To spare, my dear Dr. Newman, any further pressure on those feelings with which I have already taken so large a liberty, I will only add one word more for my own satisfaction. During our long intercourse there is only one subject on which, after the first experience, I have measured my words with some caution, and that has been where questions bearing on ecclesiastical duty have arisen. I found some little caution necessary, because you were always so prompt and ready to go even beyond the slightest intimation of my wish or desires.
"That God may bless you with health, life, and all the spiritual good which you desire, you and your brethren of the Oratory, is the earnest prayer now and often of,
"My dear Dr. Newman,
"Your affectionate friend and faithful servant in Christ,
"+ W. B. ULLATHORNE."
IV. Letters of Approbation and Encouragement from Clergy and Laity.
It requires some words of explanation why I allow myself to sound my own praises so loudly, as I am doing by adding to my Volume the following Letters, written to me last year by large bodies of my Catholic brethren, Priests, and Laymen, in the course or on the conclusion of the publication of my Apologia. I have two reasons for doing so.
1. It seems hardly respectful to them, and hardly fair to myself, to practise self-denial in a matter, which after all belongs to others as well as to me. Bodies of men become authorities by the fact of being bodies, over and above the personal claims of the individuals who constitute them. To have received such unusual Testimonials in my favour, as I have to produce, and then to have let both those Testimonials and the generous feelings which dictated them be wasted, and come to nought, would have been a rudeness of which I could not bear to be guilty. Far be it from me to show such ingratitude to those who were especially "friends in need." I am too proud of their approbation not to publish it to the world.
2. But I have a further reason. The belief obtains extensively in the country at large, that Catholics, and especially the Priesthood, disavow the mode and form, in which I am accustomed to teach the Catholic faith, as if they were not generally recognized, but something special and peculiar to myself; as if, whether for the purposes of controversy, or from the traditions of an earlier period of my life, I did not exhibit Catholicism pure and simple, as the bulk of its professors manifest it. Such testimonials, then, as now follow, from as many as 558 priests, that is, not far from half of the clergy of England, secular and religious, from the Bishop and clergy of a diocese at the Antipodes, and from so great and authoritative a body as the German Congress assembled last year at Wurzburg, scatter to the winds a suspicion, which it is not less painful, I am persuaded, to numbers of those Protestants who entertain it, than it is injurious to me who have to bear it.
I. The Diocese of Westminster.
The following Address was signed by 110 of the Westminster clergy, including all the Canons, the Vicars General, a great number of secular priests, and five Doctors in theology; Fathers of the Society of Jesus, Fathers of the Order of St. Dominic, of St. Francis, of the Oratory, of the Passion, of Charity, Oblates of St. Charles, and Marists.
"London, March 15, 1864.
"Very Reverend and Dear Sir,
"We, the undersigned Priests of the Diocese of Westminster, tender to you our respectful thanks for the service you have done to religion, as well as to the interests of literary morality, by your Reply to the calumnies of [a popular writer of the day.]
"We cannot but regard it as a matter of congratulation that your assailant should have associated the cause of the Catholic Priesthood with the name of one so well fitted to represent its dignity, and to defend its honour, as yourself.
"We recognize in this latest effort of your literary power one further claim, besides the many you have already established, to the gratitude and veneration of Catholics, and trust that the reception which it has met with on all sides may be the omen of new successes which you are destined to achieve in the vindication of the teaching and principles of the Church.
"Very Reverend and Dear Sir,
"Your faithful and affectionate Servants in Christ."
(The Subscriptions follow.)
"To the Very Rev.
"John Henry Newman, D.D."
II.—The Academia of Cathoilic Religion.
"London, April 19, 1864.
"Very Rev. and Dear Sir,
"The Academia of Catholic Religion, at their meeting held to-day, under the Presidency of the Cardinal Archbishop, have instructed us to write to you in their behalf.
"As they have learned, with great satisfaction, that it is your intention to publish a defence of Catholic Veracity, which has been assailed in your person, they are precluded from asking you that that defence might be made by word of mouth, and in London, as they would otherwise have done.
"Composed, as the Academia is, mainly of Laymen, they feel that it is not out of their province to express their indignation that your opponent should have chosen, while praising the Catholic Laity, to do so at the expense of the Clergy, between whom and themselves, in this as in all other matters, there exists a perfect identity of principle and practice.
"It is because, in such a matter, your cause is the cause of all Catholics, that we congratulate ourselves on the rashness of the opponent that has thrown the defence of that cause into your hands.
"Very Reverend and Dear Sir,
"Your very faithful Servants,
"JAMES LAIRD PATTERSON,
"EDW. LUCAS, Secretaries.
"To the Very Rev. John Henry Newman, D.D.,
"Provost of the Birmingham Oratory."
The above was moved at the meeting by Lord Petre, and seconded by the Hon. Charles Langdale.
III.—The Diocese of Birmingham.
In this Diocese there were in 1864, according to the Directory of the year, 136 Priests.
"June 1, 1864.
"Very Reverend and Dear Sir,
"In availing ourselves of your presence at the Diocesan Synod to offer you our hearty thanks for your recent vindication of the honour of the Catholic Priesthood, We, the Provost and Chapter of the Cathedral, and the Clergy, Secular and Regular, of the Diocese of Birmingham, cannot forego the assertion of a special right, as your neighbours and colleagues, to express our veneration and affection for one whose fidelity to the dictates of conscience, in the use of the highest intellectual gifts, has won even from opponents unbounded admiration and respect.
"To most of us you are personally known. Of some, indeed, you were, in years long past, the trusted guide, to whom they owe more than can be expressed in words; and all are conscious that the ingenuous fulness of your answer to a false and unprovoked accusation, has intensified their interest in the labours and trials of your life. While, then, we resent the indignity to which you have been exposed, and lament the pain and annoyance which the manifestation of yourself must have cost you, we cannot but rejoice that, in the fulfilment of a duty, you have allowed neither the unworthiness of your assailant to shield him from rebuke, nor the sacredness of your inmost motives to deprive that rebuke of the only form which could at once complete his discomfiture, free your own name from the obloquy which prejudice had cast upon it, and afford invaluable aid to honest seekers after Truth.
"Great as is the work which you have already done, Very Reverend Sir, permit us to express a hope that a greater yet remains for you to accomplish. In an age and in a country in which the very foundations of religious faith are exposed to assault, we rejoice in numbering among our brethren one so well qualified by learning and experience to defend that priceless deposit of Truth, in obtaining which you have counted as gain the loss of all things most dear and precious. And we esteem ourselves happy in being able to offer you that support and encouragement which the assurance of our unfeigned admiration and regard may be able to give you under your present trials and future labours.
"That you may long have strength to labour for the Church of God and the glory of His Holy Name is, Very Reverend and Dear Sir, our heartfelt and united prayer."
(The Subscriptions follow.)
"To the Very Rev. John Henry Newman, D.D."
IV.—The Diocese of Beverley.
The following Address, as is stated in the first paragraph, comes from more than 70 Priests:—
"Hull, May 9, 1864.
"Very Rev. and Dear Dr. Newman,
"At a recent meeting of the clergy of the Diocese of Beverley, held in York, at which upwards of seventy priests were present, special attention was called to your correspondence with [a popular writer]; and such was the enthusiasm with which your name was received—such was the admiration expressed of the dignity with which you had asserted the claims of the Catholic Priesthood in England to be treated with becoming courtesy and respect—and such was the strong and all-pervading sense of the invaluable service which you had thus rendered, not only to faith and morals, but to good manners so far as regarded religious controversy in this country, that I was requested, as Chairman, to become the voice of the meeting, and to express to you as strongly and as earnestly as I could, how heartily the whole of the clergy of this diocese desire to thank you for services to religion as well-timed as they are in themselves above and beyond all commendation, services which the Catholics of England will never cease to hold in most grateful remembrance. God, in His infinite wisdom and great mercy, has raised you up to stand prominently forth in the glorious work of re-establishing in this country the holy faith which in good old times shed such lustre upon it. We all lament that, in the order of nature, you have so few years before you in which to fight against false teaching that good fight in which you have been so victoriously engaged of late. But our prayers are that you may long be spared, and may possess to the last all your vigour, and all that zeal for the advancement of our holy faith, which imparts such a charm to the productions of your pen.
"I esteem it a great honour and a great privilege to have been deputed, as the representative of the clergy of the Diocese of Beverley, to tender you the fullest expression of our most grateful thanks, and the assurance of our prayers for your health and eternal happiness.
"Very Rev. and Dear Sir,
"With sentiments of profound respect,
"Yours most faithfully in Christ,
"The Very Rev. Dr. Newman."
V. and VI.—The Dioceses of Liverpool and Salford.
The Secular Clergy of Liverpool amounted in 1864 to 103, and of Salford to 76.
"Preston, July 27, 1864.
"Very Rev. and Dear Sir,
"It may seem, perhaps, that the Clergy of Lancashire have been slow to address you; but it would be incorrect to suppose that they have been indifferent spectators of the conflict in which you have been recently engaged. This is the first opportunity that has presented itself, and they gladly avail themselves of their annual meeting in Preston to tender to you the united expression of their heartfelt sympathy and gratitude.
"The atrocious imputation, out of which the late controversy arose, was felt as a personal affront by them, one and all, conscious as they were, that it was mainly owing to your position as a distinguished Catholic ecclesiastic, that the charge was connected with your name.
"While they regret the pain you must needs have suffered, they cannot help rejoicing that it has afforded you an opportunity of rendering a new and most important service to their holy religion. Writers, who are not overscrupulous about the truth themselves, have long used the charge of untruthfulness as an ever ready weapon against the Catholic Clergy. Partly from the frequent repetition of this charge, partly from a consciousness that, instead of undervaluing the truth, they have ever prized it above every earthly treasure, partly, too, from the difficulty of obtaining a hearing in their own defence, they have generally passed it by in silence. They thank you for coming forward as their champion: your own character required no vindication. It was their battle more than your own that you fought. They know and feel how much pain it has caused you to bring so prominently forward your own life and motives, but they now congratulate you on the completeness of your triumph, as admitted alike by friend and enemy.
"In addition to answering the original accusation, you have placed them under a new obligation, by giving to all, who read the English language, a work which, for literary ability and the lucid exposition of many difficult and abstruse points, forms an invaluable contribution to our literature.
"They fervently pray that God may give you health and length of days, and, if it please Him, some other cause in which to use for His glory the great powers bestowed upon you.
"Signed on behalf of the Meeting,
"THOS. PROVOST COOKSON.
"The Very Rev. J. H. Newman."
VII.—The Diocese of Hexham.
The Secular Priests on Mission in 1864 in this Diocese were 64.
"Durham, Sept. 22, 1864.
"My Dear Dr. Newman,
"At the annual meeting of the Clergy of the Diocese of Hexham and Newcastle, held a few days ago at Newcastle-upon-Tyne, I was commissioned by them to express to you their sincere sympathy, on account of the slanderous accusations, to which you have been so unjustly exposed. We are fully aware that these foul calumnies were intended to injure the character of the whole body of the Catholic Clergy, and that your distinguished name was singled out, in order that they might be more effectually propagated. It is well that these poisonous shafts were thus aimed, as no one could more triumphantly repel them. The 'Apologia pro Vitâ suâ' will, if possible, render still more illustrious the name of its gifted author, and be a lasting monument of the victory of truth, and the signal overthrow of an arrogant and reckless assailant.
"It may appear late for us now to ask to join in your triumph, but as the Annual Meeting of the Northern Clergy does not take place till this time, it is the first occasion offered us to present our united congratulations, and to declare to you, that by none of your brethren are you more esteemed and venerated, than by the Clergy of the Diocese of Hexham and Newcastle.
"Wishing that Almighty God may prolong your life many more years for the defence of our holy religion and the honour of your brethren,
"I am, dear Dr. Newman,
"Yours sincerely in Jesus Christ,
"RALPH PROVOST PLATT, V. G.
"The Very Rev. J. H. Newman."
VIII.—The Congress of Würzburg.
"September 15, 1864.
"The undersigned, President of the Catholic Congress of Germany assembled in Würzburg, has been commissioned to express to you, Very Rev. and Dear Sir, its deep-felt gratitude for your late able defence of the Catholic Clergy, not only of England, but of the whole world, against the attacks of its enemies.
"The Catholics of Germany unite with the Catholics of England in testifying to you their profound admiration and sympathy, and pray that the Almighty may long preserve your valuable life.
"The above Resolution was voted by the Congress with acclamation.
"Accept, very Rev. and Dear Sir, the expression of the high consideration with which I am
"Your most obedient servant,
"(Signed) ERNEST BARON MOIJ DE SONS.
"The Very Rev. J. H. Newman."
IX.—The Diocese of Hobart Town.
"Hobart Town, Tasmania, November 22, 1864.
"Very Rev. and Dear Sir,
"By the last month's post we at length received your admirable book, entitled, 'Apologia pro Vitâ suâ,' and the pamphlet, 'What then does Dr. Newman mean?'
"By this month's mail, we wish to express our heartfelt gratification and delight for being possessed of a work so triumphant in maintaining truth, and so overwhelming in confounding arrogance and error, as the 'Apologia.'
"No doubt, your adversary, resting on the deep-seated prejudice of our fellow-countrymen in the United Kingdom, calculated upon establishing his own fame as a keen-sighted polemic, as a shrewd and truth-loving man, upon the fallen reputation of one, who, as he would demonstrate,—yes, that he would,—set little or no value on truth, and who, therefore, would deservedly sink into obscurity, henceforward rejected and despised!
"Aman of old erected a gibbet at the gate of the city, on which an unsuspecting and an unoffending man, one marked as a victim, was to be exposed to the gaze and derision of the people, in order that his own dignity and fame might be exalted; but a divine Providence ordained otherwise. The history of the judgment that fell upon Aman, has been recorded in Holy Writ, it is to be presumed, as a warning to vain and unscrupulous men, even in our days. There can be no doubt, a moral gibbet, full 'fifty cubits high,' had been prepared some time, on which you were to be exposed, for the pity at least, if not for the scorn and derision of so many, who had loved and venerated you through life!
"But the effort made in the forty-eight pages of the redoubtable pamphlet, 'What then does Dr. Newman Mean?'—the production of a bold, unscrupulous man, with a coarse mind, and regardless of inflicting pain on the feelings of another, has failed,—marvellously failed,—and he himself is now exhibited not only in our fatherland, but even at the Antipodes, in fact wherever the English language is spoken or read, as a shallow pretender, one quite incompetent to treat of matters of such undying interest as those he presumed to interfere with.
"We fervently pray the Almighty, that you may be spared to His Church for many years to come,—that to Him alone the glory of this noble work may be given,—and to you the reward in eternal bliss!
"And from this distant land we beg to convey to you, Very Rev. and Dear Sir, the sentiments of our affectionate respect, and deep veneration."
(The Subscriptions follow, of the Bishop Vicar-General and eighteen Clergy.)
"The Very Rev. Dr. Newman, &c. &c. &c."