Secret Instructions of the Jesuits - Diego Laynez


These Secret Counsels, the superiors should diligently keep, and preserve among themselves; and only communicate them to a few of the professed, and instill some of them into those who are not professed, when it evidently may be done with much advantage to the society; and then only under the seal of secrecy, and not then as if prescribed by any one, but as the fruits of personal experience; and because many of the professed know these secrets, from their commencement, the Society has especially provided that no one acquainted with them should remove himself to other religious orders, except to the Carthusians, because of their perpetual solitude of life and obligatory silence; which the Holy See has confirmed.

The utmost care should be taken that these counsels should not come into the hands of strangers, because envying our destiny they would maliciously misinterpret them; but should this occur, which must be prevented if possible, let it be denied that these are the principles of the society, and this denial confirmed by those of us, whom we certainly know to be ignorant of these rules; and let our public instructions, and our rules or regulations printed or written, be set in opposition to them.

Let the superiors also, always carefully and cautiously inquire whether these counsels have been made known to strangers by any of us; and also, let none transcribe them for himself or for another, unless by consent of a general or provincial; and if there be a doubt of any one's fitness to be intrusted with such important secrets of the society, convince him that you confide in him, but drop him.

Chapter I.
Settlement in a New Place

How the Society ought to conduct itself when it commences a settlement in a new place.

I. An explanation of the design of the society, prescribed in those rules, which declare that the society ought to labor with as great diligence for the good of others, as for its own, will render it acceptable to the people of the place; therefore the humblest duties in the hospitals ought to be performed; the poor and the afflicted, and those in prison, should be visited and the confessions of all promptly received, that by such uncommon benevolence to all, and by the novelty of the thing, the principal inhabitants may admire and love us.

II. Let all remember that the power to exercise the offices of the society is to be requested modestly and religiously, and that they should study to make all chiefly ecclesiastical, but also secular, whose influence we want, favorable to themselves.

III. Also let them take care to visit distant places, where having explained our poverty, alms, however small, may be received, which should again be given to others who are poor, so that they who do not as yet know the society, may be won, and may be so much the more liberal towards us.

IV. Let all appear to breathe the same spirit, and so learn the same exterior deportment, that by such uniformity in such variety of persons, every one may be attracted; they who do otherwise should be dismissed as injurious.

V. In the commencement, let our members be careful in buying lands; but if they should purchase for us those well situated, let this be done in the fictitious name of some faithful and confidential friend; and that our poverty may better appear, let the estates which are near to places in which we may have colleges, be assigned by the provincial to remote institutions, by which it will be impossible that rulers or magistrates can ever have certain knowledge of the society.

VI. Let not our members make any location for a college, except in wealthy cities; for the object of the society is to imitate Christ, our Saviour, who resided generally in Jerusalem, but only passed through other places of less importance.

VII. Let the utmost means be always extorted from widows, and our extreme poverty be proven to them.

VIII. In every province let no one, except the provincials, know precisely the value of the revenues. Let what is in the treasury at Rome, be sacred.

IX. Let us proclaim, and every where in conversation announce, that we have come for the education of youth, and the good of the people, and that all things will be performed gratis, and without respect of persons, and that we will not be a burden to the community, as other religious orders are.

Chapter II.
Friendship of Princes and Noblemen

By what method the Principal Persons of the Society may acquire and preserve the familiarity of Princes, Noblemen, and persons of great distinction.

I. For this above all things, every effort should be made, that we may gain the ears and hearts of Princes and persons of distinction, so that there may be none who will dare to rise up against us, but that all may be obliged to depend upon us.

II. Experience teaches that Princes and Noblemen are especially pleased with ecclesiastical persons when they connive at their vices, and give them a favorable interpretation; such especially of the contracting of marriages within the prohibited degrees of affinity or consanguinity, and the like; they who desire such things are to be encouraged with the hope that by our influence, dispensations can easily be obtained from the Pope, which he will grant if the reasons be explained, examples produced, and opinions quoted, to show that it may be done for the promotion of the common good and greater glory of God, which is the scope of this society.

III. The same is to be done when a Prince attempts any enterprise which is not equally pleasing to all the nobility; for his mind is to be moved and excited to go on, but the minds of the others are to be persuaded to accommodate themselves to the ruler and not to oppose him; but this is to be alone in a general manner, never entering into particulars, lest should the enterprise not succeed, it be charged to the society; and should this act be disapproved at any time, contrary counsels should be provided plainly prohibiting the very thing; and the authority of some Fathers should be addressed, from whom the real counsels are concealed, who with an oath can attest that the society is calumniated when those things are insinuated respecting it.

IV. It will also greatly help us in joining the minds of Rulers if we skilfully, and by the aid of third persons, insinuate ourselves into embassies for them at once honorable and beneficial, which are to be undertaken to other Princes and Rulers; especially to the Pope and supreme Monarchs; for we can thus promote at once ourselves and the society; wherefore none but those devoted to our affairs and skilled in them, should be destined to this service.

V. The favorites of Princes, and especially their domestics with whom they are on familiar terms, by small presents chiefly, and by various duties of piety, are to be gained, that by them we may acquire faithful information respecting the humors and inclinations of Rulers and noblemen; so that the society may readily accommodate itself to them.

VI. Experience also teaches us as in the case of Austria and the Kingdoms of France and Poland, and other empires, how much the society may benefit itself by being concerned in the marriage contracts of Princes. Therefore, let those matches be carefully promoted as the most proper, where the parents and friends of the parties are our friends or associates.

VII. Distinguished women are most readily gained through those domestics, attached to the bed chamber; therefore let these be pleased by every method, for thus will access to all, even the most profound secrets in families, be opened.

VIII. In governing the consciences of the great, let our confessions follow the opinions of those authors who give the greater latitude to conscience, against the opinions of other religious orders, that they being left, the great will prefer to depend wholly on our direction and counsel.

IX. Rulers as well as prelates, and all others who can render extraordinary service to the society, are to become partakers of all the merits of the society; the greatness of so high a privilege having been first explained to them.

X. The unlimited powers of our society of absolving, even in cases which as it regards other pastors or religious orders, are reserved; also as it regards dispensing with fasts, keeping vows, or having them released, matrimonial impediments, and other affairs, are to be cautiously and prudently insinuated; by which it will happen that many will come to us and be bound to us by obligations received.

XI. Such are to be invited to discourses, meetings, orations, exercises, declamations, etc. complimented with verses and written themes, invited to entertainments, and honored in these, and various other appropriate ways.

XII. Let the animosities and dissentions amongst the great, be brought to us, that they may be settled; for so we can come gradually to a knowledge of their familiar and secret affairs, and can bind one party to our interests.

XIII. But if any one not attached to the society should serve a monarch or ruler, vigilance is required on our part; or what is better, on the part of others, he should be seduced by promises, favors and preferments, obtained for him through his prince or monarch, into the friendship and familiarity of the society.

XIV. Let all beware of recommending or promoting those who for any reason have been dismissed from the society, and especially, those who have voluntarily left it; for however they may dissemble, they will always bear an implacable hatred to the society.

XV. Finally, let all be solicitous so to conciliate the rulers, noblemen, and magistrates of every place that they may strenuously and faithfully support us, even against their own relations, kindred and friends, whenever the occasion requires it.

Chapter III:
Attracting Those with Authority

In what manner the society must act with those who have great authority in the state: and how others, although not rich, can nevertheless aid us in various ways.

I. Besides all the before mentioned principles, which will be proportionally applicable here, we must secure the favor of these persons against our adversaries.

II. Let their authority, wisdom, and prudence, be used for the acquisition of property, and various offices, will be really enjoyed by us; and even let their names, where they are perfectly confidential, be quietly, and with great secrecy, used to augment our temporal wealth.

III. They are to be employed in soothing and restraining meaner men, and common people, opposed to the society.

IV. From bishops, prelates, and other superior ecclesiastics, according to the diversity of our occasions, and their disposition towards us, those things must be obtained which shall be needful to us.

V. In some places it will be sufficient to procure prelates and curates to do what they can, that those under their direction should reverence the society. And that they themselves, will not impede our ministeries. In others, where they can do more, as Germany, Poland, etc., they are to be most profoundly honored, that by their influence and that of rulers, we may obtain the control of monasteries, parishes, priories, patronages, foundation of masses, and religious places. And we can very readily accomplish these things in places where Catholics are intermixed with heretics and schismatics. It must be shown to these prelates, that immense advantage and merit will arise from such changes, which could not be expected from priests, seculars or monks. If they will do what we desire, their zeal is to be openly applauded and the memory of the action made perpetual.

VI. For this purpose, exertion should be used, that such prelates should resort to our confessions and counsels, and if they have any hope, or ambition for higher honors, from the Roman See, they are to be favored by every exertion and effort of our influential friends, concentrated from every quarter, upon this object.

VII. We should be watchful of bishops and rulers, when they found colleges or parochial churches that the society may have the power of appointing the vicars who have the care of souls; and that one superior of that place, for the time being, be appointed curate; and so the whole government of that church will be ours, and all the parishioners become so subject to the society, that we can obtain any thing from them.

VIII. Whenever the principals of academies oppose us, or the Catholic or heretical citizens hinder our foundations, we must manage the prelates that the principal pulpits may be occupied by us: for it will thus occur that the society will some time at least, have a suitable occasion to explain their necessities and wants.

IX. The prelates of the Church must be greatly caressed when any thing is to be done respecting the beatification and canonization of any of our members, and then by all means, letters should be procured from great men and rulers, by which the business may be forwarded at the Papal See.

X. If it should happen that prelates or noblemen obtain legations, it should be diligently guarded and prevented, that they should not employ any religious orders who oppose us, lest they might communicate disaffection to them, and they spread it into the provinces and states in which we reside. And if legates of this kind, should pass through those provinces and states where the society has colleges, let them be received with great honor and affection, treated with all the distinction consistent with religious decorum.

Chapter IV:
Preachers and Confessors

What things ought to be recommended to preachers, and confessors, to the great.

I. Our members should so manage, princes and distinguished men, that while they appear to aim singly after the greater glory of God, they may enjoin on them the no greater austerity of conscience than the princes themselves permit; for our aim should be, not at once, but insensibly to look towards temporal and political supremity.

II. It is therefore often to be inculcated upon them, that the distribution of honors and dignities in the state should look to justice; and that God is greatly displeased with rulers, if, instead of respecting it, act from impulse. They should protest often and in a solemn manner, that they wish in no way to interfere in the management of public affairs, but only to speak when invited, from the obligation of their station. When they understand these things well, it should be explained what virtues they ought to possess, who aspire to dignities, and to public and eminent stations; and at the proper time they should nominate and recommend for them, those who are the sincere friends of the society; and this should not be done immediately by ourselves unless the prince should direct it, but it would have a better effect if his friends or favorites would interfere.

III. Hence let our confessors and preachers be informed by our friends what persons are qualified for any office, especially such as are liberal towards the society; let them have the names of these among themselves, and in a proper time with dexterity, either through ourselves or others, propose them to princes.

IV. Let the confessors and preachers most carefully remember, to behave towards princes in a refined and gentle manner, and by no means to glance at them, either in sermons or private conversation; but to remove all apprehension from them, and to exhort them above all, to the cultivation of hope, faith and political justice.

V. Scarcely ever let them accept little presents for private use, but let them exhibit the common necessity of the Province, or College; let them be contented with a chamber plainly furnished, nor clothe themselves too richly: and let them promptly administer comfort and consolation to the most abject persons about the palace, and not seem to be obsequious to the great alone.

VI. As soon as possible after the death of official persons, let due care be taken, that friends of our society may succeed them: yet so as to escape suspicion of usurping authority; for as we said, let them not immediately advance themselves, but faithful and powerful friends, who can bear envy if any should arise.

Chapter V: Other Religious Orders

How to act towards religious orders, which perform the same functions in the church, which we do.

I. These men should be met firmly; and at the same time, it is to be explained and demonstrated on a proper opportunity, to princes and others, who have any authority, and are at all attached to us, that our society contains the perfection of all orders, excepting their cant and external asperity of life and dress; and even if any religious orders should excel in any thing, that even in that, this society shines in a more eminent manner in the church of God.

II. Let the defects of other religious orders be inquired into and noticed, which being gradually pointed out and published to our faithful friends, but prudently and with the appearance of sorrow; let it be shown that they discharge these duties in which they concur with us, less happily than we do.

III. That greater opposition should be made against those who wish to establish schools for the education of youth in places, in which we instruct with honor and usefulness; let it be shown to princes and magistrates, that such would lead to commotion and sedition in public affairs, unless prevented, which will begin with the youth themselves, who are instructed in such diversity of manners; and finally that this society is best able to educate youth.

IV. And if those religious orders should obtain pontifical letters, or should have for themselves the recommendation of cardinals, we must oppose them through princes and noblemen, who should inform the pope respecting the merits of this society, and that youth can be peacefully instructed by it with sufficient ability; and also let them procure and exhibit testimonials from magistrates, given respecting our good conduct and instruction.

V. In the meantime let us diligently study to give a striking example of virtue and learning, by exercising the students in their studies and in other popular scholastic performances, before noblemen and magistrates, and the people as spectators.

Chapter VI:
Attracting Rich Widows

How to conciliate rich widows to the society.

I. For this work, fathers advanced in age, should be chosen, of lively complexion and agreeable conversation, by whom these widows are to be visited, and as soon as they show any affection towards the society, then let the works and merits of the society be exhibited to them, which if they receive, and begin to visit our churches, look out for them a confessor, by whom they may be weekly directed, especially in order to constancy in their widowed state, by enumerating and praising its advantages and happiness; and let them pledge their faith and stake themselves as hostages that eternal reward can be acquired by such a course, and that it is the most effectual method to escape the pains of purgatory.

II. Also let the confessor provide that they should be occupied in embellishing some house, as a chapel, or oratory, in which they can employ themselves in meditations and spiritual exercises, so that they may the more easily be called away from the conversation and visits of suitors; and although they may have a chaplain, let ours not abstain from the celebration of mass, and especially from exhortations properly made; and study to keep the chapel under their control.

III. Things which relate to the government of the house should be cautiously and gradually changed, so that regard be had to person, place, affection, and devotion.

IV. Let those domestics especially, be removed, but by little and little, who do not plainly communicate and correspond with the society; and let such be recommended, if any should be substituted, who depend on us, and are content to do so; for so we can be made acquainted with all things which are done in families.

V. The whole effort of the confessor should look to this point, that the widow should use and acquiesce in his advice in all things; which he may occasionally show to be the only foundation of her spiritual proficiency.

VI. The frequent use of the sacraments, and especially of penance, is to be advised, in which she may open the thoughts of her mind and all her temptations most freely; and then frequent communion, and the sacred rite of confession, to which she should be invited with promises of special prayers; and the recitation of the litany and daily examination of conscience.

VII. It will also aid, not a little, to the fullest knowledge of all her inclinations, that a general confession, though it may have been made to another, be repeated.

VIII. Exhortations should be made concerning the advantages of widowhood, the troubles of matrimony, especially when repeated, and concerning the dangers which have been once incurred, etc.; and which pertain in the highest degree to man.

IX. Sometimes, skilfully make the proposal of some suitor, but of one whom it is well known the widow abhors; the vices and bad habits of those who are thought to please her are to be depicted so that she may sicken at all second marriages.

X. When therefore it appears that she is well affected to the state of widowhood, then let a spiritual life be recommended, not a recluse one, the inconveniences of which had better be set forth and exaggerated; but such as was that of Paula, or Eustachia, etc. and let the confessor take care as soon as possible that by a vow of chastity extended to at least two or three years, he prevent every step to second marriages, during which time all conversation with the opposite sex, and even intercourse with relations and connexions, are to be forbidden, under the pretext of greater communion with God. As for the Ecclesiastics by whom the widow shall be visited, or whom she shall visit, if all cannot be excluded, let such only be admitted as come by our recommendation, or are dependant upon us.

XI. When it shall have gone thus far, let the widow be persuaded by little and little to good works, especially to alms-giving; but even this she is by no means to do without the direction of her spiritual father; since it is of the highest importance that her talent be given with discretion for her spiritual improvement; and alms ill applied may be the cause, or occasion, of sins, and so might yield only small benefits and rewards.

Chapter VII:
How Widows are Retained

How widows are to be retained; and how to dispose of the goods which they may leave.

I. Let them be urged constantly to go on in their devotion, and good works, so that no week may pass in which they do not retrench spontaneously some of their superfluities, for the honor of Christ, the blessed Virgin, or their patron saint; which let them give to the poor, or devote to the decoration of temples, till they are divested of the most of these treasures, like the first fruits of Egypt.

II. But if besides their common affection, they show a liberality to this society, and continue stedfast; let them become partakers of all the merits of the society, by the special indulgence of the provincial, or even of the general, if they be eminent persons.

III. If they have taken a vow of chastity, let them renew it, according to our custom, twice a year; innocent recreation being conceded to them, on that day with our members.

IV. Let them be frequently visited, entertained and amused with agreeable conversations and stories, spiritual and facetious, according to each one's humor and inclination.

V. Let them not be too rigidly treated in confession, lest they become too morose; except where the hope be lost of regaining the favor of those enticed from us, in which case great discretion is to be exercised on account of the characteristic inconstancy of women.

VI. Let them be carefully kept from the visitations and festivals of other churches, especially those of the religious orders; and let it be impressed upon them that all the indulgences of other orders are abundant in our society.

VII. If any mourning-dress be required by them, let it be of a becoming elegance, having an air at once religious and fashionable, lest they think themselves governed entirely by their spiritual guide; and if there should not be any danger of inconstancy, and they should be found faithful and liberal towards the society, let what they may require for sensuality be granted them moderately, scandal being avoided.

VIII. Let other ladies who are young and respectable, and descended from rich and noble parents, be placed with widows, that they by degrees become accustomed to our direction and manner of living: over these let some female preside, elected and appointed for this purpose, by the confessor of the whole family; let them be subject to the decisions and other established rules of the society, and let those who will not accommodate themselves to them, be sent to their parents or others, by whom they were brought to us; and let them be described as perverse and of an ungovernable disposition, etc.

IX. Nor should less care be taken of their health and amusements than of their safety; wherefore if any complain of indisposition, at once let all fasting, the use of the hair-shirt, and of bodily penances, be forbidden; nor let them be permitted to go even to church, but secretly and cautiously let them be administered to at home; let their visits to gardens and colleges, provided they be secret, pass unnoticed; and let their intercourse and private amusements, with those whom they most delight in, be connived at.

X. To obtain such a disposal of the revenues which any widow may have as will be favorable to the society, let the perfection of the state of holy men, be exhibited, who having left the world, renounced their parents and possessions, with great resignation and cheerfulness of mind, have served God. And for this end let what is contained in the constitution and rules of the society, about this kind of renunciation and self-denial of all things, be explained in order. Let other examples be adduced of widows who thus in a short time have been sanctified, and obtained hope of canonization, if they should thus persevere to the end; and let it be shown to them that for this object our influence with the pope shall not be wanting.

XI. Let this be firmly impressed upon them, that if their consciences would enjoy perfect tranquility, the direction of the confessor, as well in temporal as in spiritual things, is to be as implicitly followed, without murmuring, reluctance or any inward reservation, as if particularly ordained by God himself.

XII. They are also to be properly instructed that even if they should give alms to ecclesiastics, or what is better, to the professed, and even those of respectable and exemplary lives, still they are not acceptable if given without the knowledge and approbation of the confessor.

XIII. Let the confessors most diligently take care that such widows as are their penitents should, under no pretext, visit persons of other religious orders, or enter into any familiarity with them; to prevent which they should endeavor at the proper time to exhibit the society as an order superior to all others, and most useful in the church; of greater authority with the pope, and all rulers; most perfect in itself, because it dismisses the hurtful and unfit, and so lives without the scum and dregs with which the monastic orders are infected, who mostly are ignorant, stupid, slothful, careless about their salvation, gormandisers, etc.

XIV. Let the confessors propose to them, and persuade them to give pensions and contributions, with which the ordinary yearly expenses of colleges and houses of the professed, especially that at Rome, may be discharged; neither should they be forgetful of the ornaments of the temple, and of wax-tapers, wine, etc., necessary for the celebration of the sacrifice of mass.

XV. But if any widow in her life should not have given to the society her whole estate, let a proper occasion be taken, and especially when she is laboring under severe indisposition and her life is in danger, to represent to her the indigence, recent foundation, and multitude of our colleges not yet endowed, and let her be encouraged to undertake those expenses as the foundation of her own eternal glory.

XVI. The same is to be done with rulers and other benefactors; for they are to be persuaded to say that these are the acts which are memorable in this world, and prepare eternal glory from God, for them in another; but if any malevolent persons should allege the example of Christ, who had not where he might lay his head, and wish the companions of Jesus to be also very poor, let it be shown and seriously impressed upon all, every where, that THE CHURCH OF GOD IS NOW CHANGED, AND MADE A MONARCHY, which ought to defend itself with great authority and power against the most powerful enemies, and that it is that little stone hewn out of a rock which increases to a very great mountain, as predicted by the prophets.

XVII. To those who are inclined to alms-giving, and to the adorning of churches, let it be shown that therein consists the greatest perfection; because extricating themselves from the love of worldly things they may make Christ himself and his companions possessors of them.

XVIII. But because we always expect less from widows who educate their children for the world, we will see.

Chapter VIII:
Sons of Widows

What must be done that the sons and daughters of widows may embrace a religious or devoted life.

I. As the mothers are to act firmly, so we must act mildly in this matter: let the mothers be certainly instructed that by reproofs, chastisements, etc., they may be severe to their children from infancy, and when the daughters especially become more advanced, let them deny them female ornaments and dress; and by often desiring and praying God to incline them to the ecclesiastical state, and by promising some remarkable gift if they would become nuns: let them often explain the difficulties which are common to all in matrimony, and those which they themselves have particularly experienced, by lamenting that they had not preferred a single life to marriage; and finally let them continually so act that their daughters especially, disgusted with the tedium of a life passed in such a manner with their mothers, might think of a religious state.

II. Let our members converse familiarly with their sons, or if any should appear adapted for our society, let them be introduced occasionally into the college, and let those things be shown and explained to them which may be in any manner pleasant; and that the invitations to join our society may be accepted, let such things as gardens, vineyards, country seats, and estates, where we amuse ourselves, be shown them; let our travels to different kingdoms, our intercourse with the rulers of the world, and whatsoever may delight young persons be told them; let them see the external neatness of our refectories and bed-rooms; the cheerful intercourse among ourselves, the ease of our government to which is yet promised the glory of God; and finally the pre-eminence of our order above all others, and let our conversations mix what is pleasant with what is grave.

III. Let them be exhorted sometimes, as if by inspiration, to religion in general; and then let the perfection and excellence of our society be cautiously insinuated; let them also know, both in public exhortations and private conversations, how great a sin it is to spurn the divine call; and finally let them be persuaded to perform such spiritual exercises as will strengthen their preference for such a life.

IV. We should take care to have instructors attached to our society, who may constantly watch and exhort such youth; but if they should be reluctant abridge their privileges somewhat now and then, that they by such monotony of life may be made submissive. Let the mother explain the difficulties of the family. At last if it cannot thus be properly affected, that of their own choice they would move their minds to the society, let them be sent under the pretext of their studies to remote institutions of the society; and while on the part of the mother few comforts are allowed to be administered, on the part of the society let strong allurements be shown that their affections may be transferred to us.

Chapter IX:
Increasing Revenues

Of increasing the revenues of our colleges.

I. When it can be prevented, let no one be admitted to complete profession as long as he expects any inheritance, unless he has a younger brother in the society, or on account of other important reasons; but in all things, and above every thing, let the interest of the society be consulted in accordance with the known objects of the superiors; who agree at least in this, that the church should be restored to its former splendor, for the greater glory of God, and that all the clergy ought to be of one mind; wherefore let it be frequently suggested and every where promulgated, that the society consists partly of members who are so poor that but for the daily alms of the faithful they would totally want all things; that another part consists of fathers, poor indeed, but who possess a certain support, and are not like others, mendicants and burthensome to the people in their studies and functions; wherefore let the confessors of rulers, of noblemen, of widows and others from whom the society can hope much, seriously inculcate those things which concern this matter, that while they confer spiritual and divine things upon them, they should receive at least earthly and temporal things in return; and scarcely ever omit opportunities of receiving them when offered; and if any thing be promised and delayed, let it be prudently recalled to memory, when it can be done, so as to conceal all love of riches; but if any confessor of noblemen or others seem less industrious in attending practically to these things, let him be seasonably and cautiously removed; and let another be substituted; and should it be necessary for the greater satisfaction of his penitents, let him be sent to the more remote colleges, declaring that the society most needed his presence and talents there; for we have recently heard that some young widows, prevented by sudden death, did not make a legacy of tapestry very precious, which had been designed for temples of the society, through our negligence in not accepting it in right time; for it is not time, but the good will of our penitents which is to be looked at, in receiving such things.

II. Let prelates, canons, pastors, and other ecclesiastics who may be rich, be allured by great efforts to religious acts, and by degrees through the influence of the propensity to religious actions, conciliated to the society, which may finally see their liberality become gradually manifest.

III. Let confessors not neglect to interrogate their penitents, (but cautiously) about their name, family relations, parents, friends, estates, and then to examine their expectancies, state, intentions and resolutions, which ought to be moulded favorably to the society, if not so already. But if the hope of any advantage should be apparent, for it is not expedient to inquire about all things at once, let them be directed under pretence of greater clearing of conscience, or some salutary penance, to confess weekly; wherefore for the same reason let them be pressed to come freely to the confessional, so that what could not be inquired into on one occasion, may be ascertained on repeated opportunities; which if it shall succeed according to his wish, if it be a female, let her by every method be induced to persist in frequent confession and visitation; if a man to frequent companionship and familiarity with us.

IV. What has been said about widows may be understood to apply concerning merchants and rich citizens and married persons, without children, from whom the society may frequently acquire their whole estate, if these rules are prudently reduced to practice. But these things are to be chiefly observed towards rich female devotees, who adhere to us, about whom, if not descended from very distinguished parentage the common people can at most but murmur.

V. Let the rectors of colleges endeavor to obtain intelligence of the houses, gardens, farms, villages, and other estates which may be owned by the first nobility, merchants or citizens, and if it can be done, the taxes and rents by which they may be burthened; but cautiously, for it can be done most effectually by confession, companionship and private conversations, wherefore when a confessor obtains a rich penitent, let him immediately inform the rector, and try to cherish him by every method.

VI. But the sum of the matter consists in this, that all our members should know precisely how to conciliate their penitents, and others with whom they associate, and to accommodate themselves to the disposition of each; wherefore let the provincials provide, that many be sent to places, which are inhabited by the rich and noble; and that the provincials may do this the more prudently and completely, let the rectors remember to inform them accurately of the proper time to act.

VII. Let them also inquire whether by the reception of their children into the society, their contracts and possessions would pass to it; and if it can be done let them inquire whether any goods, by some agreement could be transferred or otherwise ceded to a college so as to come back after some time to the society; to which purpose let the poverty of the society and the greatness of its debts, be intimated to all, especially to the rich and great.

VIII. If it happen that widows, or rich married persons who are attached to us, have only daughters, let our members direct them kindly to the state of a devotee, or to religious seclusion; but if they have sons who may be fit for our society—let such be enticed to it, and let the others be encouraged by some small inducement to go to other orders. But if there should be an only son, by all means let him be drawn to the society, and all fear of his parents removed from his mind, and that the vocation is of Christ is to be shown by proving that the sacrifice would be acceptable to God although it required him to leave his parents without their knowledge and against their will; then let him be sent to some remote noviciate, having first given notice to the general: but if they have sons and daughters, let the daughters be first sent to a monastery or state of devotion, and then let the sons with the inheritance of the estates be drawn into the society.

IX. Let the superiors gently but firmly admonish the confessors of widows and married persons of this description that they may usefully employ themselves in behalf of the society according to these counsels: which if they do not, let them be removed and others substituted in their place, so that they cannot maintain any correspondence with the family.

X. The widows and other devout persons who appear to strive with great earnestness after perfection are to be induced as the most efficient method of rising to the pinnacle of excellence, to give all their possessions to the society, and to live upon the annuity which the society will regularly appoint them according to their need, so that without any care or solicitude, they may more freely serve God.

XI. To manifest more effectually the poverty of the society, let the superiors borrow money on bond from rich persons attached to the society of which the payment should be deferred; and then in time of dangerous disease especially, let such person be constantly visited, and by every method be prevailed on until he is persuaded to surrender the bond; for so we shall not be known in the will, and in the meantime will nevertheless obtain something without incurring the hatred of the heirs to the estate of the deceased person.

XII. It will also be proper to borrow money from some persons, at a yearly interest, and to dispose of it somewhere else at a higher rate, that the excess may cover the expense; for in the meantime it may happen, that the friends who have lent us the money, moved by compassion for us may give the society the interest, and at length even the principal, either by will or by donation during their life, when colleges are to be built or temples raised.

XIII. The society can also usefully trade, under the name of rich merchants attached to us; but certain and abundant gain is to be looked at, as in the Indies, which have furnished the society not only souls but thus far also much wealth through the favor of God.

XIV. Let our members take care to provide, in places where they reside, a physician who may be faithful to the society, whom they should especially commend to the sick, and extol above others; that in turn, he commending us in preference to other religious orders, may cause that every where we will be called to them that are sick and dying, and especially to such as are persons of great distinction.

XV. Let the confessors be attentive in visiting the sick, especially those who are in danger, and that they may decently exclude other ecclesiastics, and members of other orders, let the superiors take care that at any time when the confessor is obliged to leave the sick, others may succeed, and may encourage the sick man in good purposes; the horror of hell, etc. or at least of purgatory, in the meantime is prudently to be held forth, and it is to be shown, that as water extinguishes fire, so alms extinguishes sin; and that alms can never be better bestowed than for the nourishment and support of such persons as by their calling profess a desire for the salvation of their neighbors; and so too will the sick be benefited themselves, and make satisfaction for their own sins; for charity covers a multitude of sins. Charity can also be described as that wedding garment, without which no one can be admitted to the heavenly feast. Finally, let those things be produced from scripture and the holy fathers, which may be judged most efficacious to influence him, respect being had to the capacity of the sick person.

XVI. Let women complaining of the vices and unkindness of their husbands be instructed secretly to withdraw a sum of money and to offer it to God, for the expiation of the sins of their husbands and for obtaining forgiveness for them.

Chapter X:
Dismissal on False Pretext

Of the secret strictness of this discipline in the society.

I. Let every one, of whatever condition or age, be dismissed as an enemy of the society, but under another pretext, who shall alienate our devotees and other friends from our churches, and from resorting to us, or who shall divert alms to other churches or orders, or shall attempt to seduce any wealthy or well affected person from the society; and also those who when they dispose of their effects shall show greater affection for their relations than for the society; for this is a great sign of an unmortified mind, and it is proper that the professed should be thoroughly mortified; so of all who shall turn alms taken from penitents or other friends of the society to their own poor relations. But that they may not afterwards make complaints of the cause of their dismission, let them not be at once dismissed, but let them at first be prohibited from hearing confessions; and be mortified and vexed with the exercise of the meanest offices; let them be obliged daily to perform those to which they are known to have the greatest aversion, let them be removed from higher studies and honorable occupations, and let them be provoked with chapters and public censures; let them be kept from recreations and from intercourse with strangers, let those things which are not absolutely necessary in dress and other indispensable things, be withheld till they are forced to murmuring and impatience; and then, as persons too little mortified, and injurious to others by an evil example, let them be dismissed; and if a reason of their dismission should be required by their parents or the prelates of the church, let them be represented as not having the spirit of the society.

II. Let such be dismissed, moreover, as have any scruples in acquiring riches for the society, and let them be represented as too confident in their own judgment, but if they should wish to give the reason of their conduct, to the provincials, let them not be heard, but compelled to observe the rule which binds all to render blind obedience.

III. Let it be considered from the beginning, even from infancy, who go farthest in devotion to the society; and who are observed to entertain regard for other orders, or for the poor, or for their parents, and as such will be useless in future, let them be gradually prepared for dismission in the aforesaid manner.

Chapter XI:
Against Those Dismissed

What we should all do against those dismissed from the society.

I. Since the dismissed, acquainted with at least a portion of our secrets, frequently do injury on that account, these efforts are to be obviated by the following methods:—before they may be dismissed from the society let them be induced to promise in writing, and swear, that they will never write nor speak any thing injuriously of the society; in the meantime let the superiors preserve in writing, the evil inclinations, defects and vices, which they may have at any time admitted for the clearing of their conscience, according to the constitution of the society, by which, if it shall be necessary, the society can strengthen itself with noblemen and prelates in preventing their promotion.

II. Those who are dismissed, should be published immediately, through our colleges, and the general reasons of their discharge, such as an unmortified mind, disobedience, an indisposition for spiritual exercises, obstinacy, etc. should be accumulated; then let all others be admonished, on no account to associate with them; and if strangers speak of the dismissed, let all uniformly say, and every where declare that the society discharges none but for weighty causes, even as the sea casts up only the dead, etc.; especially let such cases, as have caused us odium, be managed with such caution, as will give plausibility to the dismission.

III. In private exhortations it should be urged that the dismissed are exceedingly unhappy, and constantly soliciting re-admission: and the misfortunes of any, who may have perished miserably, after their departure from the society, should be aggravated.

IV. Whatever accusations those dismissed from the society may bring, are to be opposed by the influence of important men, who should every where declare that the society dismisses no one without strong reasons, and never cuts off sound members: which is proven by the zeal which the society feels and commonly exhibits, for the souls of those without: how much more then for her own members?

V. Again, such noblemen or prelates as the dismissed may have begun to obtain any influence or credit with, should be drawn and bound to the society by every kind of benefit; it should be urged upon them, that the common good of an order, whose fame equals its utility to the church, ought to predominate over the private advantage of any individual; but if their regard for the dismissed should continue, it will be profitable, besides urging the real causes of their dismission, to add other things, which although not certain, may be made to appear probable.

VI. We must by all means, prevent those, especially who have voluntarily deserted the society, from being promoted to any office or dignity in the church, until they shall have submitted and devoted themselves, and their all to the society; and that in such a way, as to make it obvious to all that they are willing to depend entirely upon it.

VII. Timely care should be taken, as much as possible, to prevent their exercising the more distinguished functions of the church, such as preaching, hearing confessions, publishing books, etc., lest they should conciliate the affection and applause of the people; therefore, let the most diligent inquiry be made into their life and conduct, as well as their associations, occupations, etc.; and as it regards the dismissed, even their intentions; for which purpose it will be useful for us to hold confidential intercourse with some one in the families, where the dismissed reside, that the moment any thing equivocal, or censurable, shall be discovered, it may be noised about by persons of inferior condition, devoted to us, and thus noblemen and prelates who might favor them, may be restrained by these indications of future infamy; but if they commit nothing blameworthy, and conduct themselves laudibly, their virtues and commendable actions, are to be depreciated by subtle suggestions, and ambiguous expressions, until the esteem and confidence which they before enjoyed is diminished; for it is the plain interest of the society, that the dismissed, and still more deserters, should be wholly crushed.

VIII. The misfortunes and disastrous events which befall them, ought to be immediately published, but at the same time solicit for them the prayers of the righteous, lest we should be suspected of malevolence; but, amongst ourselves, in every way exaggerate them, thus to retain others.

Chapter XII:
Who Should be Favored

Who should be cherished and favored in the society.

I. The first rank is due to diligent laborers, who promote equally the temporal and spiritual good of the order, such are most frequently, the confessors of princes and nobles, widows, and rich devotees, as well as preachers and professors, all in short, who know these secrets.

II. The second place belongs to those, who waisted in strength and decrepid with age, have spent their talents, for the temporal good of the society; and this as well out of a decent regard to their past services, as, the rather, because they are suitable instruments for reporting to the superiors the usual defects, which being constantly at home, they perceive in other members.

III. These last must never be discharged, if possible to avoid it, lest the society be reproached.

IV. Next let all be favored as they are distinguished for understanding, high birth, and riches, particularly if they have powerful friends and kindred who are attached to the society, and are themselves sincerely devoted to it, in the manner aforesaid; let such be sent to ROME, or to the more celebrated universities to study; but if they should study in the provinces, they are to be encouraged by the utmost kindness and indulgence on the part of the professors, and up to the moment of their surrendering every thing to the society, nothing is to be denied them; after that, however, they are to be mortified like the rest, some regard perhaps, being always had to the past.

V. The superiors must also show peculiar respect to those who may have drawn any clever youths into the society, whereby they have not a little proven their love for it; but so long as these are not yet professed, let not the others be too much indulged; lest possibly, they should withdraw from the society, those whom they led into it.

Chapter XIII:
Selection of Youth for Admission

Of the selection of youths for admission into the society, and the way to retain them.

I. The utmost prudence must be exercised, that the youths selected, may be distinguished for the excellence of their understanding, agreeableness of form, or dignity of birth, or at the very least for one of these.

II. As a means of drawing them more readily into our order, the prefects and masters of schools must guide them with extraordinary assiduity, whilst they study, and in time of recess instil into them, how acceptable it is to God, for any one to consecrate himself, with all he has, to him, especially in this society of his son.

III. They may be led, on proper occasions, through the colleges and gardens, indeed occasionally even to our villas, and admitted to our recreations, becoming gradually intimate, care, however, being taken that familiarity does not breed contempt.

IV. The preceptors must not be permitted to chastise, and reduce them to the level of other pupils.

V. They must be overcome by little gifts and various privileges suitable to their age; but above all let them be excited by spiritual discourses.

VI. Let them be impressed with the divine interposition manifested in their election to the society, in preference to all their school-mates.

VII. At other times, especially in exhortations, they must be terrified with threats of eternal damnation, if they refuse to comply with the divine call.

VIII. If they continue firmly in the desire to enter the society, their admission can be deferred as long as they remain constant; but if they seem to waver, use every method, immediately, to establish them.

IX. Let them be effectually taught, not to mention their vocation to any friend, nor even to their parents, before their admission; so that if subsequently any temptation should cause their relapse, neither the youth nor the society shall be exposed; but if the temptation be overcome, its recollection will always afford an opportunity of stimulating them, if it occurred during their noviciate, or after the taking of their first vows.

X. As the greatest difficulty exists, in alluring the children of the great, noble, and powerful, whilst they are with their parents, who are training them to succeed to the situations they themselves occupy,—they should be persuaded by our friends, rather than our members, to place them in other provinces, at remote universities, in which we teach, previous instructions being given to the professors of the quality and condition of the youths,—and so, we may readily and certainly conciliate their good will towards the society.

XI. As they arrive at an age somewhat mature, lead them to the performance of certain spiritual exercises which have often ended well,—as in Germany and Poland.

XII. When they are in affliction and distress, is the time to urge and admonish them, according to their rank and circumstances, of the vanity of riches, and the blessedness of yielding to their vocation, rather than to suffer eternal torment.

XIII. To obtain more readily, the assent of parents, to the desire of their sons to join the society, we must exhibit the superiority of this, above all other religious societies, on account of the sanctity and wisdom of its fathers, its pure reputation with all, and the universal honor and applause, which it receives, from the very highest to the lowest; let us also enumerate the princes and nobles, who with infinite comfort to their own souls, have lived and died, or do still live in this society of JESUS: let us show how acceptable it is to God for the young to give themselves to him, particularly in this society of his Son, and how excellent for a man to have served God, from his youth; but if there should be some hesitation, on account of tenderness and immaturity of age, we can clearly display the gentleness of our institute, which contains nothing very irksome, except the observance of the three vows; indeed it ought to be specially noted, that we have no system, whose violation would incur even venal sin.

Chapter XIV:
Reserved Cases

Of reserved cases, and of cause of dismission from the society.

I. Besides the cases laid down in the constitutions, in which a superior alone, or an ordinary confessor, by the license of the superior, can grant absolution, there are, sodomy, wantonness, fornication, adultery, incest, male or female uncleanness as well as one's becoming the cause, or even the occasion, and through the utmost zeal, even of any injury to the society, to its honor or success,—all which are just causes for dismission.

II. When any one shall sacramentally confess any thing of this kind, he shall not be absolved, until he has promised, that, besides the confession, he will, personally or through his confessor, discover himself to the superior; then the superior must determine what seems best for the common good of the society; for if there be certain hope, that the crime may be concealed, it can be punished by an adequate penance, if otherwise, let him be immediately dismissed; the confessor, however, will be careful not to tell the penitent his danger of dismission.

III. If any confessor should hear, from a strange woman, that she has carnally known some member of the society, he must not absolve her, unless besides her confession, she reveals the name of her paramour, nor even then, until she shall solemnly swear never to disclose it again to any mortal, without the society's consent.

IV. If two members, sin carnally, and one discovers it first, let him be retained in the society, and the other dismissed; but the one retained should be afterwards so humbled and constantly worried, that through weariness and impatience, he may offer an occasion for dismission, which is to be instantly seized.

V. Our society must, if it would perpetuate in the church its noble and exalted association, cut off such persons, as appear at all unfit for our purpose, even though they begin well; and occasion will readily be found, if they be continually vexed, and all things managed contrary to their wishes, by subjecting them to harsh superiors, depriving them of more honorable pursuits and functions, etc., until they murmur.

VI. None are by any means to be retained, who openly oppose the superiors, or complain either publicly or privately, to their companions, or what is worse to those not members; nor in like manner, they who, whether at home or abroad, condemn our method of proceeding, as to the acquisition or administration of wealth, or indeed any thing else, as, for example, the method of crushing and suppressing the disaffected, or the dismissed, etc.; neither they who tolerate or defend the Venetians, the French, or any others from whom the society has suffered oppression or still sorer injuries.

VII. All who are to be dismissed should be treated beforehand with the greatest severity; let them be deprived of their usual employment; let them be applied first to one thing, then to another, and no matter how well they may succeed, blame them, and under this pretence change their employment; for the slightest accidental faults, impose heavy penances, rebuke them publicly in an insupportable manner, and finally discharge them, as if they were pernicious to others; but let an opportunity for this be selected, which will be the least apprehended by them.

VIII. If any of our members should have a sure prospect of obtaining a bishopric, or other ecclesiastical dignity, he should be compelled, in addition to the accustomed vow of the society, to take another, that he will always esteem and commend our institution, that he will use no confessor, who is not one of us, in short that he will determine nothing, in any important matter, but in accordance with the judgment of the society; in consequence of the non-observance of which by Cardinal TOLET, the society obtained from the holy see, that afterwards no Maronite, the perfidious offspring of the Jews or Mahomedans, should be admitted; and whoever refuses this vow, no matter how distinguished he may be, must be dismissed as the worst enemy of the society.

Chapter XV:
Treatment of Nuns and Devotees

Concerning the treatment of nuns and devotees.

I. The confessors and preachers should be extremely careful not to offend nuns, nor tempt them from their vocation, but on the contrary by conciliating the affection, especially of the superiors, they should bring it about, that at least the principal confessions will be heard, and discourses delivered by themselves, receiving in return the gratitude of the nuns; for noble and rich abbesses can render great service to the society, both personally and through their parents and friends, so that by the aid of the principal monasteries, they may, by degrees obtain the favor and friendship of almost the whole city where they reside.

II. On the other hand, our devotees should be forbidden to frequent nunneries, lest they become too fond of that manner of life, and our society be, in that way, cheated of its expectation, of obtaining all their property: but, let them be induced to perform the vow of chastity and obedience, under the guidance of their confessor, having instructed them that this is the true method agreeably to the practice of the primitive church, rather to let their light shine through the house, than to hide it under a bushel, useless to our neighbor and barren of good to souls: imitating those holy widows who ministered to Christ, let them bestow their goods on his companions: in short, let every thing prejudicial to a cloistered life be told, and urged against it; but such instructions as these must be given under the seal of secrecy, lest they come to the knowledge of other orders.

Chapter XVI:
Outward Contempt of Riches

Of the outward exhibition of a contempt of riches.

I. To prevent the seculars from charging us with covetousness, it will be occasionally proper to refuse the smaller alms, which are offered for services performed by the society; from those, however, who are entirely devoted to us, it is best to accept even the smallest offerings, lest we exhibit avarice, by admitting of none but large gifts.

II. Sepulchre in our churches should be denied to vile persons, although they may have been greatly attached to the order, for a multitude of such tombs, might make us suspected of covetousness, and the very benefits received from the dead, be discovered.

III. Other things being equal, those widows and other persons, who have given most of their effects to the society, are to be treated with more decision and firmness, than others,—that we may avoid the appearance of favoring them, in preference to others, on account of their munificence; the same rule should be observed with regard to the members of the society, but not until they have made a cession and surrender of their wealth to it: after that, if it be necessary, they might be dismissed from the society, but with infinite discretion, in order to secure the present relinquishment, or the devise at death, of at least a part of what they may have presented to the order.

Chapter XVII:
Advancing Interests of the Society

Of the method of advancing the interest of the society.

I. On this subject, it should be the grand effort of all, to be always uniform in sentiment, or at least, to declare to others that they are so, even in relation to the smallest matter, from whence it must necessarily be, no matter how great the disturbance of human affairs, that the society shall be continually increased and strengthened.

II. Let all so endeavour to shine, by their learning and their conduct, that other orders, and especially such members of them as preach, are pastors, etc., may be so eclipsed, that at length the common people may desire that we exclusively, should perform all offices; let it be openly taught, however, that learning alone is not sufficient for pastors, but they must be well grounded in their peculiar duties, for the society can help them with counsel, which for that very reason, sets so great a value on its acquirements.

III. Kings and princes ought to be impressed with the truth that under present circumstances, the Catholic faith cannot exist without politism—but this demands great discretion; for which purpose our members must have rendered themselves acceptable to the great, and acquainted with their most secret purposes.

IV. They should have the advantage of the most recent, important, and certain information, from every quarter.

V. It would be advantageous, if we could cautiously and secretly foment dissentions amongst nobles and princes, even to the mutual wasting of their strength; but if they seem likely to be reconciled, the society should immediately endeavor to pacify them, lest it should be effected by some other intervention.

VI. The opinion that the society was produced by a remarkable interposition of divine providence, for the restoration of the church, depressed by heretics, according to the revelation of the abbot JOACHIM, ought to be sedulously inculcated, on the great, as well as the common people.

VII. As soon as the favor of distinguished men and bishops is conciliated, let our members secure the cases and canonries, for the complete reformation of the clergy, who once lived under certain regulations with their respective bishops, and advanced toward perfection; then they should aspire to abbacies and prelacies, which, if we consider the sloth and stupidity of the monks, might be easily obtained when they become vacant: for it would be exceedingly advantageous to the church for all the bishopricks to be held by the society, indeed for it to possess the apostolic see; especially when his holiness once more becomes a great temporal prince: wherefore let every method be used, prudently and secretly by degrees, to enlarge the temporalities of the society, as there can be no doubt, but that the golden age of constant and universal peace would then abide, and with it, the divine blessing, upon the church.

VIII. But when the hope of attaining to this state may not be bright, and inasmuch as offences needs must come, we must temporarily change our policy, and excite princes whose friendship we enjoy, to mutual and fierce contests; in order that the society may be solicited and employed every where for the general pacification, and then as the constant author of good, be compensated with the principal benefices and ecclesiastical dignities.

IX. In fine, let the society, by acquiring the favors and authority of princes, endeavor at least to effect this,—that all shall fear, who will not love us.

Preface by the American Publisher.

The "Secreta Monita Societatis Jesu" or "Secret Instructions of the Jesuits" is a very curious work, and seldom to be met with in this country. A number of editions of it have been published in Europe, in the English, French, German and Dutch languages. The present edition is taken from that published in London by Walthoe in 1723, and dedicated to Sir Robert Walpole, afterwards Lord Oxford, and prime minister of England, in the reigns of George I., and George II. It is thought best, after the example of that edition, to print the Latin original page by page with the English version, that the learned and the plain reader may be equally suited; and that there may be no room left for doubt whether the translation, in any instance, be fairly made.

On the first appearance of these "Secret Instructions" before the public, the Jesuits were greatly offended, and denied their authenticity; and it is not known that that body has ever yet acknowledged them to be in reality what their title imports. This circumstance, however, when we consider the character of the Jesuits, and the principles upon which they are known to act, forms no solid objection to the authenticity of the work; especially when we take into consideration the following facts.

In a work, in the British Museum, printed at Venice, in 1596, and entitled Formulae diversarum Provisionum a Gaspare Passarello summo studio in unum collectae per Ordinem in suis Locis annotatae; these Secreta Monita are found. in manuscript, at the end, and appear evidently to have been entered therein by a Jesuit for his own private use. They contain the solemn caution, at the close, that they be carefully guarded, and communicated but to few, and those only the well-tried members of the Society; and also the injunction, that they must be denied to be the Rules of the Society, if ever they should be imputed to it.

There was an English edition of this work printed in 1658. The statement prefixed to that edition affirms, that when Christian, Duke of Brunswick, took possession of Paderborn, in Westphalia, he seized on the Jesuits' College there, and gave their Library, together with all their collection of manuscripts to the Capuchins, who discovered the Secreta Monita among the archives of the Rector, and that other copies were also found at Prague and elsewhere.

The learned and excellent Dr. Compton, Bishop of London, published an English translation of the work, in 1669. The well known character of that prelate is a sufficient pledge that he would never have given the sanction of his name to a work of doubtful authority, or which was adapted to mislead the public.

The Editors of the Christian Observer, who are well known to be learned and pious members of the established Church of England in the 14th Vol. of their work, pages 168, and 169, speak of this work in the following language: —

"It has already been intimated, that had the crimes charged upon the Society of Jesuits, been chargeable rather upon the spirit of the times than upon the institution; had they originated rather in the vices of a few individuals, connected with that Society, than in the genius of the Order itself: had they been rather the accidental than the necessary fruits of its constitution, we might have deemed it right to say less on the subject. But the fact appears to be, that, taking human nature and the state of society as they are, we cannot conceive that such an order could exist in the world, and such consequences not arise. But this is a matter of proof rather than of assertion; and we will, therefore, begin by laying before our readers some account of the Society, drawn psirtly from accredited historical authorities, and partly from the Secreta Monita, or the hidden Rules of the order; — rules carefully concealed during that long period, in which men felt the blow, without seeing the hand which struck it; — rules the discovery of which, at once armed all Europe against the Society.

The first copy of the Secreta Monita was discovered in the Jesuit's College at Paderbarn, in Westphalia; and a second at Prague. A Preface directs that they shall be communicated even to the initiated, with the utmost caution; and as the result of personal experience, not as the written rules of the Order. And in the case of their falling into the hands of strangers, "they must be positively denied to be the rules of the Society." The Rules of the Order were not completed by the founder of the institution: they were enlarged and perfected by some of the most distinguished followers of Loyola; and in particular, Lainez is supposed to have been the author of the Secreta Monita."

The Editors of the Christian Observer then proceed to give large extracts from the work, as exhibiting, in a manner worthy of entire confidence, the real principles of the Jesuits.

Again, in a learned and interesting History of the Jesuits published in London in the year 1816, in two volumes, octavo, and dedicated to the Right Honorable Charles Abbot, Speaker of the British House of Commons, the author, after giving a long induction of facts, some of which have been already stated above, to show that the Secreta Monita, though denounced by the Jesuits as a forgery, is really their own work, and an authentic record of their Rules, subjoins the following remarks:—

"In addition to the observations which have been adduced in support of the Secreta Monita, there appears to be some collateral evidence in favor of their genuineness from the circumstance of their being little else than an echo of the debased morality and corrupt casuistry of the Jesuits; as well as a practical exposition of their pernicious principle of the lawfulness of 'doing evil that good may come'."

"It may be asserted without the hazard of refutation, that the Secteta Monita contain no regulation which the Jesuits have not promulgated under another form, nor one which they have not actually reduced to practice. It is no more than a summary of rules resulting from their various doctrines; which rules, although they may strike the more forcibly from being thus collected in a single focus; may all (if taken separately, and reduced to their primitive elements) be plainly shown to emanate from doctrines which have been avowed and acted upon by the members of that Order, from its earliest origin.

"Another circumstance which may be noticed, as furnishing further collateral evidence to the authority of the "Secreta Monita," is the fact, that the Jesuits were always known to possess and act upon other rules, than those which were publicly avowed by them, and which "secret Rules" were understood to be confided to their Rectors and Superiors alone. The University of Paris, so far back as the year 1624, reproached the Jesuits with being governed by private laws, neither sanctioned by Kings, nor registered by Parliaments; and which they were afraid to communicate, having done all in their power to prevent their being seen by any other than those of the Society."

Again, the Bisbop of Angelopolis, whose letter has so often been referred to, inquires with reference to this fact: —

"What other religion has a secret Constitution, hidden privileges, and concealed laws of its own? And what other has all those things which relate to its government, involved in so much mystery? There is suspicion in mystery. The rules of all other Orders are open to all: even the Rules and Canons of Popes, Cardinals, Bishops, and the whole Clergy; the privileges, instructions and statutes of other religious Orders, may be seen and consulted in almost every Library; and the lowest novice of the Franciscan Order may read at one view what his duty would be, if he should ever become the General of his Order. The superiors of the Jesuits do not govern them by the rules of the Church, which are known to all, but by certain SECRET RULES, which are known only to those superiors." [See p. 36 of the Letter, Edit. Cologne, 1666]

In the Edinburgh Encyclopsedia Vol XI. Art. JESUITS, we find the Secreta Monita referred to, with confidence, as an accredited document, which, though denied by those to whom it properly belongs, was regarded by the Editors as a work of undoubted authenticity, and as exhibiting the real spirit and character of the Jesuits as manifested by all other sources of evidence. They accordiogly make large extracts from the work, in proof of the deplorable profligacy, both of principle and practice, chargeable upon the Order.

The celebrated work, entitled, The Protestant, published in a series of periodical Essays, at Glasgow, in North Britain, in the years, 1818, 1819, 1820, and 1821, in 4 Vols., octavo, is regarded with deep respect by all who are acquainted with it. The editor and author was a Mr. McGavin, a Ruling Elder, of distinguished talents and information in that city. Of this work, the Rev. Robert Hall, whose praise for vigor of mind, erudition, and eloquence is in all the Churches of Great Britain, as well as of the United States — speaks decisively, as containing the fullest delineation of the Popish system, and the most powerful confutation of its principles, in a popular style, of any work he had ever seen. "Whoever," he adds "wishes to see Popery drawn to life, in its hideous wickedness and deformity, will find abundant satisfaction in the pages of that writer." And the numerous authorities quoted by Mr. McGavin, the Secreta Monita find a conspicuous place. He alludes to the fact, that the Jesuits themselves pronounce the work a forgery of their enemies; but he considers the evidence in support of its authenticity as admitting of no reasonable question, a makes large extracts from it, in proof of his allegations.

After all, however, as has been already hinted, the question, whether the Secreta Monita were really drawn by the Jesuits, and recorded as the general code of principles by which their Order is regulated; — is a question comparatively unimportant, as long as we know so fully from other sources, and with unquestionable certainty, that the spirit of this system of instruction is the spirit of their Society. Even if the little Volume now before us, be not, literally, their work; — they have been, undoubtedly chargeable with acting upon the principles which it contains, in all cases in which they had an opportunity of carrying these principles into effect. This will appear if we attend to the testimony of some of the most learned and impartial historians who have attempted to delineate their character.

Dr. Mosheim, whose erudition and laborious fidelity, in general, as an ecclesiastical historian, are well known, gives the following dark picture of the moral system of this order:—

"In the sphere of morals, the Jesuits made still more dreadful and atrocious inroads than in that of religion. Did we affirm, that they have perverted and corrupted almost all the various branches and precepts of morality, we should not express sufficiently the pernicious tendency of their maxims. Were we to go still further, and maintain that they have sapped and destroyed us very foundations, we should maintain no more than what innumerable writers of the Romish Church abundantly testify, and what many of the most illustrious communities of that Church publicly lament. Those who bring this dreadful charge against the sons of Loyola have taken abundant precautions to vindicate themselves against the reproach of calumny in this matter. They have published several maxims inconsistent with all regard for virtue, and even decency, which they have drawn from the moral writings of that Order, and more especially from the numerous productions of its casuists."

And again:—

"After what has been observed in relation to the moral system of the Jesuits, it will not be difficult to assign a reason for the remarkable propensity that is discovered by kings, princes, the nobility and gentry, of both sexes, and an innumerable multitude of persons of all ranks and conditions, to commit their consciences to the direction, and their youth to the care, of the brethren of this Society. It is, no doubt, highly convenient for persons, who do not pretend to a rigid observance of the duties of religion and morality, to have spiritual guides, who diminish the guilt of transgression; disguise the deformity of vice; let loose the reins to all the passions; nay, even nourish them by their dissolute precepts; and render the way to heaven as easy, as agreeable and as smooth as is possible."

Nor is the representation given of this Society by Dr. Robertson the learned and eloquent historian of Charles V. in any respect more favorable.

"As it was," he remarks, "for the honor and advantage of this society, that its members should possess an ascendant over persons in high rank, or of great power, the desire of acquiring and preserving such a direction of their conduct, with greater facility, has led the Jesuits to propagate a system of relaxed and pliant morality, which accommodates itself to the passions of men, which justifies their vices, which tolerates their imperfections, which authorizes almost every action that the most audacious or crafty politician would wish to perpetrate."

And further on:—

"It was a fundamental maxim with the Jesuits, from their first institution, not to publish the rules of their order. These they kept concealed as an impenetrable mystery. They never communicated them to strangers, nor even to the greater part of their own members. They refused to produce them when required by courts of justice; and, by a strange solecism in policy, the civil power in different countries, authorized or connived at the establishment of an order of men, whose constitution and laws were concealed with a solicitude, which alone was a good reason for excluding them."

And even Mr. Hume, though far from being rigid in his moral principles, or particularly prejudiced against the Komish Church; and although he manifests a disposition to give due credit to the Jesuits in regard to points for which they might be considered as meriting commendation;—yet sums up their character in the following decisive language:—

"This reproach, however, they must bear from posterity, that, by the very nature of their institution, they were engaged to pervert learning, the only effectual remedy against superstition, into a nourishment of that infirmity; and as their erudition was chiefly of the ecclesiastical and scholastic kind, (though a few members have cultivated polite literature) they were only the more enabled, by that acquisition, to refine away the plainest dictates of morality, and to erect a regular system of casuistry, by which prevarication, perjury, and every crime, where it served their ghostly purposes, might be justified and defended."

It is no valid objection to the truth of these representations, that some individuals of eminent piety and Christian devotedness, have, now and then, been found in this far famed Society. The Constitution of their Order, before alluded to, affords an ample solution of this apparent difficulty. The truth is, the Jesuits, among a great majority of unprincipled members, found it necessary to have a few of high literary and theological qualifications, united with exemplary piety, because there were some departments of their public service, for which such men alone were fitted. From these we are told, they withheld, as for as possible, and, in some cases completely, all knowledge of the profligate parts of their system.

The frame of their government was such as to admit of this. And in this way we are to account for the fact that two or three names precious to the friends of piety, and a few others of honorable reputation, have been found in the catalogue of their members. These men were selected for high and worthy work, and were, of course, according to the system of the order, kept in ignorance of the worst features of their practical system. Nay, it seems to have been an important object with the leader of the Society, to have a number of members, decidedly pious and exemplary in their whole character, whose word would be implicitly credited by all who knew them, and who, in case of the Secreta Monita, and other obnoxious principles of the Order, becoming public, might be able, with truth to declare, that they knew nothing of their existence.

Discourse on Authenticity
of the Secreta Monita.

I. It is certainly of the greatest importance, in determining the value of the SECRETA MONITA as evidence in estimating the character of the Society of Jesus, to come to some satisfactory conclusion as to the authenticity of the work itself. If it can be shown to be really what it purports to be, then indeed the most secret principles of the most extraordinary and most universally execrated fraternity that ever appeared amongst men, are plainly laid open to the public view; and all may see the profound source of all those active, extended and unceasing operations, by which these persons kept so large a part of the world in ceaseless commotion for so many years.

If indeed the work be not perfectly authentic, that is, if instead of being the real Secret counsels of the order emanating from its very head, revealed by accident; it should appear to be a revelation made by an expelled Jesuit, as some of them say, or a mere supposititious composition as others pretend, compiled from their various authors and embodying what an enemy might suppose they would say, if they officially propounded their real secret instructions, the case would perhaps appear to be somewhat weakened. But even then, if an expelled member had written it, it might all be true; and while the power to show it was not, if indeed it was not, would be complete in the society, its failure to do so, added to inherent evidence of genuineness, in the work itself, might establish its reality on as unquestionable grounds as if it had the imprimatur of the general himself upon its face. Or if the last supposition can be considered as possible, a compilation of the most clear and well defined rules of action drawn from unquestionable sources, and thrown together into one volume would seem if possible the very clearest mode, of exhibiting the general and real spirit of the body, to which all the writers belonged.

There are schools of morals, of politics, of crime, as well as of letters and of all things else. It is a wide, terrible, and peculiar school whose opinions and conduct are here illustrated. And if it be faithfully done, by the laborious compilation and classification of materials drawn from a thousand sources, a more impressive and fair method cannot well be imagined.

II. It is certainly past all dispute that this book has, for a very long period, been in possession of the world. Here it is, handed down to us through several centuries. To sneer at it, and pass it by, is simply to establish its unanswerable authority. To be unable to give any satisfactory account of it; is to let it prove itself. It exists; it could not have produced itself. Whence did it come? But three solutions are possible.

1. It is an authentic work, containing the real facts it pretends to contain; and being what it purports to be.

2. It is the work of some expelled Jesuit, and may be more or less true, according to his knowledge of what he tried to reveal, or his integrity in telling truly what he knew.

3. It is the work of an enemy, who never was a Jesuit, but who has pretended to put into the mouth of the chief authorities of that order, what he believed they would say, if they uttered their real sentiments on the points here treated of.

III. Let us then briefly examine each of these suppositions in turn. And first, is this work authentic? I reply there is scarcely a particle of reason to doubt it.

1. In the British Museum there is a work printed at Venice in 1596, with this title "Hae Formulae diversarum Provisionum a Gaspare Passarello summo studio in unum collectae et per ordinem in suis locis annotatae." At the end of that (and where more likely?) the SECRETA MONITA, in Latin is copied in Manuscript, apparently by a Jesuit, for his own private use;—with solemn cautions at the end, similar to those found in the printed preface to the work itself, that the utmost care was to be taken that few, and these most trusty, should know them; and that if ever imputed to the society, they must be denied.

2. In the year 1658, there was a translation of the work from Latin into English, published in England. This edition is frequently to be met with. In the preface to it, it is related that Duke Christian of Brunswick took possession of the Jesuit College at Paderborn, in Westphalia, when he entered that place, and gave the Library and Manuscripts to the Capuchins, who found the SECRETA MONITA amongst the archives of the Rector. It is also asserted that other copies were found at Prague and elsewhere.

3. Dr. Compton, the celebrated Bishop of London published another English version of the SECRETA MONITA in the year 1669; having satisfied himself, after full examination, of the genuineness of the work.

4. In the year 1717, there was published at Amsterdam, a Latin edition of the SECRETA MONITA, under the title of "Machiavelli Mus Jesuiticus," inscribed to John Krausius, a Jesuit. A copy of this edition is in the British Museum.

5. There are also in the British Museum several German editions of the SECRETA MONITA.

6. In the year 1722, another edition of this work was published in London, dedicated to Sir Robert Walpole, prime Minister of England.

7. Another Edition, and which is supposed to have been the last that appeared in England, was published in 1746. This, as well as the last preceding Edition, has the Latin, and English, on opposite pages; and are both preserved in the British Museum.

8. In the year 1727, a French edition of the SECRETA MONITA was published at Cologne under the title Les Mysteries les plus secret des Jesuites contenus en diverses Pieces originales.

9. In the year 1831, the first American edition of the SECRETA MONITA was published at Princeton N. J. with the original Latin on one page, and a very diffuse English translation on the other. This edition is said on the title page to be printed verbatim from the English edition of 1725; which is one not contained in the above list, and will therefore be added, by the reader as an additional testimony. In the advertisement to this edition a statement is made, which I suppose relates to the edition, numbered 4 in the above series. If however the statement relates to a different edition, it forms an additional support to the proof in the case. The story in substance is that a bookseller in Amsterdam, by name John Schipper, bought a copy of the SECRETA MONITA at Antwerp, and reprinted it. The Jesuits hearing that he had such a work, demanded it of him, but he had sent it to Holland. A Jesuit of Amsterdam, soon afterwards learned from Van Eyk, a Catholic Bookseller that Schipper was printing a book that concerned the Society; he replied that if it was only the Rules of the Society he should not be under any concern: but desired him to ascertain what it was. When the Bookseller discovered that it was the Secreta Monita, the father greatly agitated said, it must be denied that this piece comes from the Society. As soon however as the book appeared, the whole edition nearly was bought up by the Jesuits. From one of the few copies not suppressed, the book was reprinted, with this story prefixed, there said to be taken from two Roman Catholics of Credit.

Now, here is:

  1. The Venice Edition of 1596, or thereabouts.
  2. The English edition of 1658, taken from the Paderborn and Prague copies.
  3. Dr. Compton's edition of 1669, to which let us add the other English editions of 1722, 1725 and 1746, and the first American edition of 1831, as all drawn from the same source, though this is entirely gratuitous.
  4. The Amsterdam edition of 1717, to which add the other two Amsterdam editions, mentioned in the first American edition, which is also gratuitous.
  5. The several editions, (supposing them to be reprints of each other, which is gratuitous,) found in German in the British Museum.
  6. The French edition of 1727.

At the least we produce six separate, and wholly independent proofs, from six different sources that this is a perfectly genuine and authentic record. These records are found in the Latin, German, French and English Languages. They extend over a period exceeding two hundred years. They were found in five or six sovereign states, the most of which, professed the Catholic faith and one of them, Venice, under the very eyes of the Sovereign Pontiff. And they all agree, in every fact, stated by each. Now it would be the most incredible event ever established by proof, if this various and concurring evidence should be proven to have accidentally conduced all to the very same result and still all be false. It would on the other hand be the most extraordinary circumstance ever conceived of, that so many persons, in so distant places, and so separated by ages, should conspire, and succeed in practising such a fraud as this, upon the minds of men. Indeed it is hard to imagine, how the genuineness and perfect authenticity of any record, could be established on more irrefragable proofs.

IV. There are however those who deny that the SECRETA MONITA is authentic: but make the allegation contained in the second of the three suppositions made above. This brings us to consider, whether as they say, this book may not be the work of some expelled Jesuit, and therefore false.

It may be observed that, it would not by any means follow that because the Jesuits had expelled a man, therefore all his statements must necessarily be false. Perhaps the contrary would be quite as fair a conclusion; unless indeed, all the allegations of history against this order be false. It would seem, amongst the most probable events, that an upright man, who chanced to become possessed of their real designs, would desire to leave them as fast as he could; and would thus subject himself to expulsion, if that were their way of treating the refractory.

But an expelled Jesuit is, I apprehend, a rarer being, even than a candid one. They know little of priests, little of Rome, nothing of the spirit of the Society of Jesus, as they profanely call themselves, who can for one moment suppose, that the high and trusty dignitaries of the order, (and none else knew their secrets,)—would escape with expulsion, and the power to reveal them. The cord, the bowl, the dagger, are instruments not perfectly unknown to this fraternity; and none ever knew better, that the dead speak not. The light of history must be put out, and the ferocious spirit that even in this free land gnashes on us with its hideous teeth must be more warily concealed, before such stories about expelled Jesuits can gain credence.

But if this were the work of expelled Jesuits,—the order must have been peculiarly unhappy. For, from the proofs adduced, there must have been at the least four of them, widely separated in country and distant by generations from each other! This Venetian Jesuit about 1596, and this Jesuit at Amsterdam in 1717, nearly a hundred and twenty years after him: these Jesuits at Prague and Paderborn about the middle of the seventeenth century, and those French Jesuits at Cologne far into the eighteenth, eighty years apart; how could it be, that so many of them should have been expelled as if for the very purpose of miraculously writing falsehoods, that were perfectly identical! Upon the whole, this is a better story than that for which some are silly enough to say they have the unanimous consent of the fathers, about the miraculous translation of the Septuagint, by seventy men, in seventy cells who in an incredibly short time turned all the old Testament from Hebrew into Greek, all using identically the same words!

The story originally set on foot by one CORDARA, (as quoted by Mr. DALLAS, the English defender of this order,) and afterwards repeated by the Jesuit GRETSER, that the SECRETA MONITA, was the production of an expelled Polish Jesuit, by name Jerome Zarowich; and that it was written by him in 1616; is not only absurd, but is contradicted by himself. It is absurd to suppose that any one man could have produced the whole copies of the work, under the circumstances already stated. It is equally absurd, to call a man the Author of a work in 1616, which was in existence about 1596, as is shown above, in a distant country. But Gretser himself says, that the SECRETA MONITA, was put into the Index of prohibited books, and its perusal condemned at Rome in 1616; which proves clearly, that it could not have been at that very time in a process of composition, at Cracow in Poland, hundreds of leagues from Rome!—This admission shows, however, the great antiquity of the work; and its being put into the Prohibitory Index, shows the great anxiety of the Jesuits to have it suppressed; and confirms the story told in the first American edition, about one of the Amsterdam editions. Those who wish to see GRETSER demolished, may examine DR. JONES' Defence of the Bellum Papale.

These persons however call this work, a mere forgery: not giving the expelled Jesuit, even a pretext for his alleged libel on the society. This however is as ridiculous, as it is shamelessly false.

In the first place, if any one man ever lived who was capable of producing, from his mind, this system of subtle, profound and all grasping crime, (which is hardly credible,)—then it may be confidently maintained, that if he had ever fallen into the hands of this society, he was just the man, that the world's wealth could not have purchased from them.

Again, whoever will attentively read over these secret counsels, will at once perceive that they exhibit a system so peculiar in all respects, as could only have been suggested and concocted under the most extraordinary circumstances. It is such as must have been social in its origin,—and founded on the common sagacity, experience, forecast, and interests of several, if not many, utterly unscrupulous minds. There is no possible account of this system's origin, that can be so incredible as that which pretends, that one man produced it by mere excogitation. If that were indeed so, it would be the greatest intellectual wonder the world ever beheld.

But the truth is, that the minute proofs, which establish the fact that this book is no forgery, are so remarkable, as to force us to admit its genuineness, or to shut our eyes to truth.

In the first place, the style of the Latin composition, is such that it must have been written, by persons, having slight pretensions to learning. The expressions are occasionally grossly ungrammatical; very often most singularly vulgar. And yet the scope of the whole is awful!

Again, the turn of the expression, is such as to render it certain, that the authors of the Latin did not think in English. I dare not use the same confidence as to other languages,—but I believe no scholar will deny, that the manner of writing shows that the authors could not have thought either in French or German.—It is probable that one individual put this work originally into form, as we find the expression "inquam,"—I say, etc.; and it is nearly certain that that person was a Spaniard. For first, the spelling of the Latin is sometimes peculiar, and resembling the Spanish; and secondly, unusual technical words, are drawn from that language. Such are syndicationibus, (Chap. vii. 8.) from the Spanish, Sindicado (judicium,) the judgment or authoritative sentence, instead of the French Syndical, which could not express the sense intended; and the German Syndicat which only means the tribunal itself. So also, Cilicia, (Chap. vii. 9.,) which passing by the Latin Cilium, from which the word might have been formed, and the French Cilice, uses almost the very letters of the Spanish Cilicio, a hair shirt.—

Such peculiarities seem to draw down our minds almost irresistibly, to the very band of detestable, ignorant, and yet shrewd conspirators, who originated, and for the first fifty years, controlled this fearful and diabolical corporation. Their very speech betrayeth them.

So again the whole turn of thought, in those numerous and most infamous passages which relate to females, and especially to widows, show evidently, that the prevailing ideas were drawn from a state of society neither English, French, nor German, but peculiarly Spanish.

Thus too, some of the most incredible things contained in the whole book, and which no audacity would think of forging, and nothing but absolute truth could embolden a man to assert, from the very unreasonableness of the thing, and the certainty of exposure, have actually been remarkably exemplified in practice, years after their publication. In chap. vi. 1. for example, it is coolly laid down as a settled rule of conduct, that initiated Jesuits are in certain cases to pledge their faith and stake their souls, on the behalf of those they wish to gain over to their object. This, I admit, seems wholly incredible. And yet the Duke of Brunswick, has solemnly declared to mankind, that one of the most weighty reasons (being the 50th of his series) which induced him to turn Catholic was precisely this. He had asked many Protestants if they would agree to be damned in his stead, if he remained a Protestant, and their religion should by chance be false; and not one would agree to it! But on the other hand, many Catholics readily agreed to such terms, if he would become one of them. The little volume containing the Duke's reasons, (just such reasons, as one would expect to see used to justify such an act,) has been actively handed about by Papists, as an instrument of proselyting, in various parts of America.

Still further, the most minute details of these terrible chapters, have been fulfilled even in this community, at the end of more than two centuries after the wonderful book was put into the prohibitory Index at Rome. Of this I make three signal citations.

1. In the preface to the book, they are directed as a principle, to deny their own rules, acts and every thing, no matter how true, certain, and estimable, provided policy requires it; and to have uninformed or unscrupulous members to confirm their denial by oath. Now in this very city, I have known priests, and many others, deny the very decrees and canons, of their most famous councils; and openly traduce as calumniators, those who quoted their books, printed by Archiepiscopal authority in our very midst, and sold daily every where!

2. In the first chapter, it is recommended as peculiarly important, to have connections with Hospitals, Prisons etc. In this city at this time, an order of female professed, holding the nearest intercourse with the Jesuits, has possession of two of our most important public institutions, for the sick. In one, if not both, there are mass altars, at the expense of the public; and the compensation given, to these females, (of the order, two of whose members were witnesses to the will forged by the late Rector of the Cathedral) is kept secret, while the public is made to believe that nothing is paid for their services.

3. In Chapter viii. the method is pointed out by which the sons of widows may be induced to join this monstrous fraternity. Now it so happens, that both Mr. Whitefield the last Archbishop, and Mr. Eccleston the present one, were widows' sons! And what is worse, of Protestant extraction. And what is final and conclusive, if the best proof in our reach is to be credited, both Jesuits!

These are only specimens, of the exact and minute fulfilment, of lies forged two hundred years ago, as they would persuade us by an expelled Jesuit in impotent, and sheer malice! The least that can be said is that our priests and prelates, and their sisters, have been most unfortunate in their accidental confirmations of those falsehoods!

V. We now come to the last supposition, of which the case seems to admit; namely, that the SECRETA MONITA, is the work of some implacable enemy of the Society, who never was a member of it, but has here exhibited the principles by which he believed, or at least wished to persuade others, that its secret affairs were conducted.

In refutation of such an opinion, if any one ever held an opinion so entirely absurd, it may in general be observed, that the whole amount of proof for two centuries, and the universal consent of all disinterested persons, to the sufficiency of that proof, cannot be set aside by the suggestion even of probable conjectures, still less by such as are highly improbable, indicating a different state of case. Now all the learned, both Protestants and Catholics, so that they were not Jesuits, have constantly and with one accord, received this book as authentic in the fullest sense. Every person who has written expressly on the subject of the Jesuits, not being one of their creatures,—all who have had occasion to touch incidently on the subject, all compilers of current opinion, and received truth in the present and past ages, unanimously agree, that these secret counsels, are the mystery of iniquity, by which this association has produced so much harm. Surely something above conjecture and assertion are wanting to rebut this unanimous consent.

It may also be observed, that he who will carefully examine this system, will see, that organized as human society has been, and without pronouncing on the merit or demerit of the system itself; it is in the highest degree clear, that if the Jesuits had adopted such rules of conduct as these, they must have produced great and lasting effects. On the other hand, if we look back at what the Jesuits have done and suffered, we see in these rules, the clearest exposition of their greatness and their overthrow. To my mind, no proofs of genuineness could be more complete, than those which thus spring up, from the very nature of the case, and stamp themselves indelibly upon it.—And this is most remarkably true, if we remember, that the production and publication of this work, occurred within less than sixty years after the origin of the order,—before the developement of its greatness, and its general infamy for its crimes; and has come down side by side with it, through successive ages crying to the world, at once with the voice of prophecy, and the undeniable truth of history!

The difficulties which must have existed in the way of any attempt to compile such a work as this, from the most abundant sources even, are so very great, that it is next to impossible any man could have done it, without committing such and so many blunders as to render detection certain. That an obscure and now forgotten person should have accomplished such a work, is not capable of belief. That such a person should have completed and issued such a work before the great mass of the publications from which they say he pretended to draw it, were written, is childish folly to assert. And that these mighty and terrible Jesuits afterwards wrote these works to confirm what the SECRETA MONITA, had before said, or to give a colour to the allegation, that it was so compiled, no one will be mad enough to pretend.

The new state of the world out of which this order arose made it different from all things that had existed before. In compiling this work, the author must know all their peculiarities, must understand their entire design, must enter into their prejudices—must see through their code of morals—must be perfect master of their grand scheme, and all the means by which it was to be compassed. See their peculiarities, their contempt of all other orders, their asserting contrary to all other orders, that the Church was a monarchy (chap. ix. 16.) their devotion to the education of youth, their special intrigues with the great; their snares for widows and servants—the singular privileges, personal and social, of the order, the peculiar difficulties that they had met with, in different places, and the especial hatreds they had already conceived, their whole plan, and their whole profound, sagacious, corrupt, complicated, and secret machinery! Who could know, who could gather out of scattered volumes even if they existed, or by private industry and opportunities, such a system as this! It is out of all the bounds of belief, that such a system could be so formed, and then so fitted, as this has fitted.

But if any choose to think otherwise, then let them rest satisfied that he who should gather up, out of a thousand sources the true principles and policy of any order of men, from their own writings and actions, would thus give the most complete and comprehensive view of it, that could by possibility be produced. It would then stand forth, a living, moving, acting creature; and not, as in the naked principles, dogmatically laid down, a great, but inanimate outline. Let them rest assured moreover, that he who did this, in the case in hand, with no very ample materials, at the period the work was done, if ever, has accomplished a work, the like of which cannot be produced out of all the annals of the world, for perfect accuracy and immeasurable success. If such a man ever lived, we may safely pronounce him, the most remarkable of his race, and mourn that he has left behind no trace of his being, but this stupendous triumph.

VI. There is in this case one peculiar circumstance which gives to the authenticity of the SECRETA MONITA, the seal of absolute certainty, while it casts the darkest shade over the society. Why have the Jesuits any secret rules or instructions, or principles of conduct or objects of effort? Why this secrecy? And how, at so early a period of their history, as the end of the sixteenth century, was the author of this work, supposing him to have been no Jesuit, to have known with such certainty, the existence and the nature of such secrets?

For many years they did indeed deny that any such secret rules existed; and doubtless, they will now deny, that these are the real secret counsels by which their affairs are conducted. But about the middle of the last century, when the society was suppressed in Portugal for being accessory to the assassination of King Joseph I. and suddenly expelled from Spain for their complicated crimes; their constitutions and secret records fell into the hands of the public. And in the famous controversy before the great Chamber at Paris, between the merchants of Lyons and Marseilles and the French Jesuits, in the year 1761, about the immense losses in the Martinica trade, the court demanded, and in a luckless hour the Jesuits produced, their secret constitutions; thus falsifying all their former statements.

But it had been long certain, that what was now first admitted was really true. In the year 1624 the University of Paris, charged this order with being "governed by private laws, neither sanctioned by kings, nor registered by parliaments; and which they were afraid to communicate, having done all in their power to prevent their being seen by any other than those of the society." (Hist. of the Jesuits p. 329 of vol. 1.) How perfectly does this accord with their own maxims, in their preface to the present work; let no one who knows our secrets, be allowed to join any other order, except the CARTHUSIANS who preserve strict retirement and perfect silence; WHICH THE SEE OF ROME HAS CONFIRMED? So that the allegation of the unknown libeller who the Jesuits would have us believe forged the Secreta Monita, is confirmed by the direct declaration of the University of Paris, and placed past doubt by the indirect confirmation of the Pope himself!

But I will produce one more witness,—PALAEOX, Bishop of Angelopolis, in his famous letter to POPE INNOCENT X. dated Jan. 8, 1649, writing of this society, demands "what other Religion has a secret constitution, hidden privileges, and concealed laws of its own? And what other order has all those things which relate to its government involved in so much mystery? There is suspicion in mystery. The rules of all other orders are open to all; even the Rules and Canons of Popes, Cardinals, Bishops, and the whole clergy; the privileges, instructions, and statutes, of other religious orders may be seen and consulted in almost every library; and the lowest novice in the Franciscan order may read at one view, what his duty would be, if he should ever become the General of his Order. BUT THE SUPERIORS OF THE JESUITS DO NOT GOVERN THEM BY THE RULES OF THE CHURCH, WHICH ARE KNOWN TO ALL, BUT BY CERTAIN SECRET RULES, (Regles Cachees) WHICH ARE ONLY KNOWN TO THOSE SUPERIORS." (See p. 36, of the edition printed at Cologne, in 1666.)

VII. Such a system can of course be found nowhere else; for such another order, never was established amongst men. Indeed the only real ground for hesitation is the reluctance with which the heart allows itself to credit such things of this kind. If history were less replete with the crimes of this atrocious fraternity, if the irresistible evidence of the past, left us some room to question the utter and horrible depravity of this order; there might be some room left, to relapse into a grateful incredulity of such amazing sin. But there is not "a single hook on which to hang a doubt."

If every thing that is impartial in history, can be said to concur with irresistible light and power, upon one single point, it is that this society has been the most perfectly diabolical that ever was conceived. If there is in the wide compass of human thought, one expression, that in every dialect used amongst men, conjures up at once, all that is wicked, fearful and degraded; the supreme union of sin, activity and genius; the very essence of what is to be hated, feared, and shunned, that expression is, a Jesuit priest! Whence this universal execration? Whence this "unanimous consent," of all countries and ages against them! The Infidel, the Catholic, the Protestant, and the very father of the faithful: Hume, De Thou, Mosheim, and Gongenilli, as specimens of all; Protestant England, Catholic Venice, Infidel France, Pagan China, as a committee of the universe; why have all, every where, denounced, abhored Jesuitism, as the sum of all evil! Reader, examine, ponder these secret counsels, and you will see the solution of this problem; and in that solution you cannot but find the fullest authority for asserting the genuineness and authenticity of the book itself.

Upon the whole, there cannot be a doubt on the mind of any candid man who will examine the subject, that this SECRETA MONITA, is no forgery; that it is no ingeniously deduced system; but that it is sustainable by proofs the most conclusive in its pretensions to be the real secret counsels of the society of Jesus, profanely so called; drawn up at a very early period of its existence; combining all its experience; revealing its grand purpose—and constantly followed by its leading spirits.