28 September 2009

Newman and Challoner

Yesterday afternoon I took a bus down to Steventon, walked down that magnificent (and unique?) 'Causeway' with its Medieval houses and the church, then round to the site of the old Railway Station. Why? Not mainly because it is the spot halfway between Bristol and London, where the Directors of the Great Western had their Board Meetings, those from each town coming in their respective trains to convene in the solid early Victorian buildings which still survive. No; I went principally because, in the days when the University was strong enough to maintain its veto on the railways coming to Oxford (for obvious reasons; in my time the last train back to Oxford on Sunday evenings was still called the Flying Fornicator) Steventon is where one got off and took horse transport back to the University. It is through Steventon that Newman's Charles Reding made his emotional last visit to Oxford before his reception into full communion. The site of the actual station is now occupied by a bathetic building called Kingdom Hall of J******'s Witnesses; Yuk.

Then along country bridleways to Milton Manor, a recusant house with an evocative chapel in Strawberry-Hill Gothick and with good medieval glass from Steventon and elsewhere. Bishop Challoner often stayed there with his friend Squire Barret, and Mass (EF) was said yesterday using his Altar, Chalice, and Missal, in recollection of his birthday on Tuesday. He was buried in the Squire's vault in the Village Church, until they hoiked him out and reinterred him amid the preposterous 'Byzantine' absurdities of 'Westminster Cathedral'. I wonder if the splendid old gentleman would have preferred to remain among friends in the gentle Berkshire countryside (happily, it never occurred to them to kidnap Mrs Manning from her peaceful grave in the shadow of the everlasting hills, by the South Downs in Sussex, and transfer her to beside her husband under his Cardinal's Hat at Westminster. I wonder why ...).

And I wondered whether Challoner said Mass with the pronunciation we Italophiles use, or whether, like a proper Englishman, he said "Tee ijjita, Clementissimee Payta ...".

Good blackberries along the paths. But they seem to be nearly finished in most places.


Independent said...

The Society used to have its own pronunciation of Latin and Jesuits were careful to use it. Perhaps they preserved the 18th Century usage. I wonder do they still use it?

I wonder also whether Challoner agreed with Lingard, Butler, and Berington about the Papacy. Was he a Cisalpine?

I wonder if the whole history of the 19th century might have been slightly different if Mrs Manning had lived. The ultramontane party would not have had their organiser and chief whip at the Vatican Council, and in England the Catholic Church would not have forged links with Labour. Catholics however might have bee able to attend the older universities a generation earlier and would not have had to wait for Manning's prohibition to be lifted when he died.

Diagnostic said...

I am rather aggrieved at the back-handed suggestion the Westminster Cathedral is not a cathedral. Does it not possess a Cathedra?

Independent, you are quite wrong to blame Card. Manning for the Church's links with Labour. That link exists because of the heavily working class nature of Roman Catholicism in Great Britain. We must also not forget that the Conservative Party has long been a hotbed of anti-Catholicism. One cannot discount the Irish question either.

BillyD said...

What's wrong with Westminster Cathedral? I've never been there (or anyplace else in England) but it looks beautiful on the web...

rev'd up said...

Could it be that Cardinal Cushing was trained in just this style of Latin pronunciation?

This video is a mind bender.

Start at 4:15 to end.


Truly the cathedral needs to remove the Erik Gill stations - give them to the JWs. I'm sorry to be dim, but is he the obvious reason for "Flying F?"

Independent said...

Diagnostic - I do not blame Manning for the excellent work which he did in helping to resolve the Dock Strike - when he died I believe there were TU banners in his funeral procession. He is to be commended not blamed for his links with Labour. He had with his concern for social reform much in common with the early Labour Movement especially as it was heavily trades union inspired rather than Socialist.

I would however agree with you that the Conservative and Unionist Party, with its Northern Irish links , had an anti-catholic bias. I can remember as a child in the 1940's catholic Irish friends with keenly catholic uncles who were strongly Labour and I later suspected sympathisers with the IRB. Irish Nationalism and Labour often went hand in hand in England. As you well maintain the real link between Labour and Catholicism came from drawing from the same pool of support, the working class, especialy the Irish. Manning was an extra element.

Sir Watkin said...

Historically, however, as their name indicates, Tories had pro-Catholic tendencies.

Sadly Peel betrayed his party to Whiggery and modern "Conservatism" was the bastard offspring of the unhappy union. This was a development that the Oxford Fathers vigorously, but unsuccessfully, opposed (e.g. Newman in his letter on the "Tamworth Reading Room").

Independent said...

Tories had a strong belief in the Confessional State until reality in the shape of Daniel O'Connell forced them to abandon that position. Mr Gladstone "the rising hope of the stern unbending Tories" indeed wrote a book defending such a position. However by the 1870's both he and Newman had abandoned such a doctrine. Newman's "Letter to the Duke of Norfolk" repudiates it in answer to Gladstone's pamphlet on "Vaticaanism". The only people who seem to still hold it are Catholic totalitarians or believers in the religion of Secularism.

Sir Watkin said...

"However by the 1870's both he and Newman had abandoned such a doctrine."

No staying power, alas ....

God save the King!