Memoirs of the Life and Writings of Arthur Ashley Sykes, D.D.

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Adams#: Adams 131.9 Title: Memoirs of the life and writings of Arthur Ashley Sykes D.D.

Author: Disney, John

Page: blank with attachment

Dr. Disney presents his most respectful compliments to Mr. Adams, and hopes he will do him the honor of accepting the enclosed.

Sloane St., Knightsbridge

Feb: 0. –

Page: 243

Dr. Sykes's definition.

Page: 244

Acta Sanctorum.

Page: 245

Qui facit, per alterum, facit per se.

Page: 247




Page: 248

Phlegon, the Trallian. A freedman of Adrian. He lived to the time of Antoninus Pius. He wrote a treatise on marvelous things in 136 chapters.

Page: 249

Aye! and the baptism of children.

Sacrament! Soldier's oath.

What has not been prostituted to the ends of policy?

Page: 251

Learned romance?

Page: 254

All this is as merry as it is learned! I am glad to find Sykes acknowledges the truth "that Jews and Gentiles believed a future state of rewards and punishments."

Page: 255

Tip Top! of absurdity in Warburton!

Page: 259

Warburton embarrassed!

Page: 260

Newton's system dependent on that identity?

Egyptian priests masters in forgery!

Sacred antiquity. What is that?

Page: 270

A fair question.

Page: 275

A noble apophthegm.

Page: 276

A generous and just principle.

Page: 287

Sacrifices to God were sacrifices to the priests in all ages.

Page: 288

It was consumed chiefly by the priests.

Page: 290

And why not add the East and West Indians?

Dark indeed! From Cain to Motoch and Juggernaut.

Page: 291

Or rather reconciliation with the priests by furnishing their table and eating with them. This idea alone can remove the darkness from the rationale of sacrifices.

Page: 292

This notion was worth money to the priests.

Page: 293

and justly

Page: 294

With the priest.

Page: 295

Repentance, compunction, remorse, a new mind! This is atonement! What a rapturous idea is this of the divine government?

Life is an animalcule that floats and circulates in the blood! Good God! Pardon thy sinful creatures.

The artifices of priests had produced the customs of the world.

Page: 296

Hieroglyphical parabolical fabulous enough!

Where a custom of worshiping images is universal: what then? Draw your consequence, Dr. Sykes.

Page: 297

They have served the great ends of providence, and so did Alexander, Caesar, and Bonaparte. So did Caesar Borgia, Frederick and Voltaire. The ends of providence are too profound, too sublime, too vast for you or I to comprehend, Dr. Sykes!

Such meats and drinks as priests and people all love!

Page: 298

No! The idea of Mulcts would not do. Human nature is too generous for that.

Page: 299

Vows! Aye vows. These were the most agreeable.

This sentiment was noble.

Page: 300

I hope it is positively asserted.

Free inquiry! When or where was there ever free inquiry? I wish I owned or could purchase Sykes's Works.

Page: 301

Difficulties indeed!

Oh! Oh! Oh!

Amen and Amen!

Page: 302

Two very pertinent previous questions.

Acta Sanctorum. The work of the Bollandists. Sykes ought to have possessed this work in 47 folio volumes.

Page: 303

This is disputed.

Page: 304

Yet St. Paul was obliged to leave Timothy, sick.

Does this mean all believers in future ages?

Page: 305

Miracles in the three first centuries. Why not in the 17 first centuries according to the Acta Sanctorum?

Dodwell compliments Sykes.

Page: 306

A curious question! What difference between miracles recorded in the Gospels and those presented in the legends?

Page: 307

Sykes a powerful coadjutor to Middleton.

Page: 308

If miracles did not cease with the Apostles: if miracles continued for the three first centuries, how can it be proved that they have yet ceased? Even Chateaubriand will claim credit and Abby Paris.

Page: 309

Intermediate state! I should as soon swallow the whole 47 volumes of the Bollandists. Secker and Sherlock were priests and so was Priestley.

Page: 311

Locke, Clarke, Beson, Taylor, Peirce, Hallet, Sykes favored the Aryan scheme.

Page: 312

What is meant by "received in Churches?"

The Gospel of St. Thomas and the Acts of Paul and Thekla were received, and so was the Prophecy of Enoch. The truth is that nothing was canonical till the Council of Nicaea. Then and not till then was settled the Norma of Canonicality. And by whom?

Page: 314

That it was not. It was too useful to Origen's views.

Page: 315

If Luke wrote it, the simility of his sentiments, phrases, and words with his Gospel and Acts was not surprising.

Page: 316

If some of his epistles were written by Luke, some by Titus, some by Tertius, and some by Timothy, and some by Onesimus, the difference of style is not surprising.

Why has the Hebrew been destroyed and lost?

How can they object? When the Hebrew is destroyed?

A resolute Faith! Dr. Sykes.

Page: 317

A resolute Faith! Dr. Disney! If St. Paul ever wrote anything in Greek except his name and a concluding sentence or two, the most eminent Fathers are not competent witnesses.

Does the burden of proof rest upon the infidel to prove a negative? The believer, the assenter, should prove his affirmation.

This is the most candid and the most plausible opinion. But the question recurs, why was the original destroyed? What suspicions of interpolation and indeed of fabrication might be confuted if we had the originals?

In an age or in ages when fraud, forgery and perjury were considered as lawful means of propagating truth by philosophers, legislators and theologians, what may not be suspected?

Page: 318

What was not received? Anything, everything, and nothing.

Why has the original Hebrew been annihilated?

And who were these "Οι αρχαιοι?"

Page: 319

Very well! For an Episcopal Divine!

And he might as well add Chateaubriand in 1814. And the whole Acta Sanctorum. When Homsousianity was established and Christianity totally corrupted, no doubt, authorities enough might be accumulated.

Page: 320

Upon what authority? Paul's own epistles. But is not this begging the question?

Pray! Which are St. Paul's undoubted epistles?

Page: 321

Is it not strange that these most learned and candid of men, as I believe them to have been, should not agree when they both take the epistles themselves for undoubted authorities?

Page: 322

With great probability.

Too true! Dr. Sykes!

Page: 324

What is the meaning of this?

This was a point very easy to be proved.


Page: 325

That the superiority of Christ to Moses was the point of this epistle need not be doubted.

Page: 326

What a Figure!

Some of the things "hard to be understood."

Page: 327

A shadow! And not an image! A very nice distinction in logic and rhetoric: though clear in painting and statuary.

The difference between the statue and its shadow is real.

The rake would not have said this of Brahma, Confucius, Zoroaster, Pythagoras, Numa, Mahomet, Loyola, or Swedenborg.

Page: 328

A new system was much wanted.

What things are these?

What things are these? This is a short and easy way with infidels. My friend Disney! I wish you had been more explicit in this place!

Type and figure! Alas! What has not type and figure, and hieroglyphic and allegory and fable done in the hands of politicians, philosophers, and divines?

Page: 329

My friend Disney! Here thou art in fault.

Page: 330

There are some who conceive St. Paul to have been a Calvinist: not a Socinian nor an Arian.

Page: 331

These Figures are dark Shadows and hard to be understood.

Page: 332

Vulgar doctrine of atonement! A doctrine almost universal for 1500 years!

Page: 333

Dr. Price, I believe, thought they looked that way.

Arianism the great Error of Pierce, Hallet, and Sykes, according to Disney.

Page: 334

The human understanding is the first revelation from its Maker. From God; From Heaven. Can prophecies? Can miracles? Can the testimony of angels or men repeal, annul, or contradict that original revelation? Can God himself prove that three are one and one three? The supposition is destructive of the foundation of all human knowledge and of all distinction between Truth and Falsehood.

Page: 335

Aye! Is there any such truth? Cannot miracles and prophecies prove that one is three? And three, one?

Aye! Dr. Disney! "Fondness, fear, apprehension, not on imaginary but very real, very serious, and very dangerous consequences make men" backward to declare many other truths, as well as those that you believe? So sincerely and devoutly.

Page: 336

Alas! All other books are treated in the same manner. Even my poor "Defense" has been treated with the same knavery, cruelty, barbarity, brutality, and stupidity! What then? Will it ever be otherwise?

Page: 337



Page: 339


Page: 343

Never give up common sense! The first revelation.

Page: 345

A faithful history of Christian creeds would be as curious, if not as voluminous, as the Acta Sanctorum.

Page: 350

Tucker's vision and vehicular state is an entertaining commentary on this subject.

All are to be judged. Literal! All stand at the judgment seat. Figurative! With or without vehicles! No matter!

I should rather have a purer vehicle than this flesh? And better eyes and steadier fingers.

Page: 351

Believers and unbelievers equally culpable.

Here is the great secret.

Aye! and additions the most monstrous, the most absurd, the most corrupt!

A good design! What then can be a bad design?

Page: 352

And Infidelity will prevail, till these atrocious forgeries are done away.


Against whom is this woe pronounced? How shall we know what is pure and uncorrupted but by by the first revelation? Is Sykes pure? Is Priestley pure? Is Lindsey pure? Is Paul pure? Is Jude pure? Is Locke pure? Is the great knight pure? Love God and Man! That is pure. Do as you would be done by! That is pure. Three units, are three times one! That is pure. All this can be understood by man, woman, and [next page]

Page: 353

children, rich and poor, without the study of three score years in a million volumes of philosophers, divines, and historians in Hebrew, Greek, Latin, Sanskrit, English, French, German, Spanish, Italian, and Russian.

Page: 362

Three, one God!

Try une Deity!

Page: 367

A complete set of Sykes's works at Harvard College, sent by Hollis.

What if these convocations, synods, general councils, etc. had been continued to 1814?

Are there not convocations, synods, general assemblies, conventions, and ecumenical councils, spiritual, theological and ecclesiastical, now in embryo or fetus, or already born in our United States? 1814. Both Presbyterian and Episcopalian?

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