Philobiblon: The fleeting nature of fame

Tuesday, December 06, 2005

The fleeting nature of fame

Miss Williams Wynn, having surveyed the theatre of her day, is now turning her attention to reviewing religion with much the same approach. She's writing about the celebrated preacher of her day, the Scottish Rev Edward Irvine, who attracted crowds of the great and good to his church in Hatton Garden.

She speaks on the first visit, after hearing him speak for 20 minutes ...

Then he told us that the intention of the following discourse would be to show from the page of history what man had been through all ages, in all countries, without the light of revealed religion. My brother whispered me, 'We have been twenty-three minutes at it, and now the sermon is to begin.' I felt exactly with him, and yet after this expression, I can" fairly and truly say that the hour which followed appeared to me very short, though my attention was on the full stretch during the whole time.

But such is the nature of fame - I haven't been able to find one reference to the reverend on the web.


Blogger Ronnie Smartt said...

Edward Irving, not Irvine, is in the usual biographical dictionaries. Born in Annan, where there is a statue of him. near Dumfries, he was called to the Caledonian Church in Hatton Garden aboit 1820. After some years of fame as the preacher there he developed strong views on the imenence of the Second Coming and was convicted of heresy by the church authorities and lost his job. Quite a few of his congregation followed him out into his new Catholic Apostolic Church, more usually known as Irvingites. I understand that believing as they did that the Second Coming was just around the corner the Cath. Ap. management committee put their property into the hands of twelve trustees, following the number of Our Lord's disciples but made no provision for their replacement on death. That mistaken judgment and the fleeting nature of some heresies and, I suppose, the apathy which is never far away have meant that the Catholic Apostolic Church is no longer with us, though some of its buildings may still be found put to other uses.

12/06/2005 10:03:00 pm  
Blogger Natalie Bennett said...

Thanks Ronnie. Going back to check on the text I see that it mixes the spelling, so I'm going to change it all to yours. I used to walk my dog past that church regularly - it has been converted into an office, but still looks nice outside. I'll try to post a pic one day.

It sounds like a fairly typical religious career - from charismatic success to letting it all go to your head!

12/07/2005 10:30:00 am  

Post a Comment

Links to this post:

Create a Link

<< Home