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'The Scots’ Reasons Against the Service Book (1637)'

British Library, Additional MS 35331, ff. 70r-70v


The Scottes reasons ag[ains]t the Service book nowe imposed upon them./ annexed to the letter pag. 128 :129.

Left margin: refere this to pag: 128./ Left margin: 1. Howe cann wee receave other formes of wor[ship] vntill the formes bee established and in contynewall practise? and the reformation bee orderly aboleshed by a generall Assembly as faultie and erroneous? w[hi]ch was never yet done, but rather wee are bounde to the mayntenance of the same, as beinge the most pure & simple formes.

Left margin: 2: Nexte the book wantes the approbation of the gen[er]all Assembly the only Representative churche w[i]thin the Realme, w[hi]ch hath power to directe Synodes, Presbiters, p[ar]ticular churches and p[er]sons in matters of religion: As if wee should receave a thinge as indifferente, and all other reiecte yt as popishe, what will followe therby but horrible confusion and schisme: And are not they schismatick whoe bringe in and practise novelties in a churche w[i]thout the warrante and approbacio[n] of the churche?

Yf yt bee alleaged that there bee no appearances of any true and righte constitute Assemblies. It is answered that the same may bee had yf it please the vrgers of the book to procure and graunte yt: Let the blame therfore lighte upon them. Then suppose that both he generalll assemblies and p[ar]liam[en]t had approved the book and enioyned the practise of the formes in yt (w[hi]ch wee trust they shall never doe) yet wee shoulde not receave yt. First because there is much popishe matter in the wordes and there is conteyned in the book Mattins and Evensonges, and Canonicall service ordayned to bee p[er]formed by the minister and Deacon as the rep[re]sentatiue prayers of the churche, to stande in steede of prayers even when wee are absente and p[er]haps sleepinge. Wee haue also here the {undereyte} formes of churchinge of women, the rynge of marriage layde upon the book w[i]th other ridiculous toyes and speeches. Matriomony is used as a Sacram[en]t wee must haue a Fonte at the entry of the Churche, and the water consecrated in the Fonte and twise in the moneth chaunged. The baptised infante must bee signed w[i]th the signe of the crosse, and interrogatories must bee demaunded in the Infantes name w[hi]ch is also most ridiculous. Baptisme profaned in private. younge children assoone as they cann reherse any p[ar]ticular Catechisme must bee Bishopped. The Com[m]union must bee receaved in private yf the partie disseased require the same: It shalbee administred to three or four in the Churche accordinge to the desire of such as woulde haue yt. Wee haue here the Idolatrous gesture of the com[m]unicante in the acte of receavinge ratified. Wee haue also a masse p[ro]cedinge the com[]union, although wee haue yt not w[i]th all the businesse and Ceremonies yet wee haue the essence and substance of the sacrifice; For in the prayer of consecration the minister must pray that God will so blesse and sanctifie the elementes of the breade and wyne w[i]th his holy Spirit that they may bee unto us the very body and bloode of Chr[ist] in w[hi]ch wordes there is strangely couched Transubstantiation./

The wordes of Institution att the consecration must bee uttered unto God as the Prieste doth in the sacrifice of the Masse and not unto the Com[m]unicantes. The Ministers must first receave because hee must as Prieste first consume the sacrifice before the {feaste} the Communicantes. Wee haue here also integrall pointes of the oblation before the consecration, and a memoriall or prayer after the oblation ymediatly. Wee haue also some accidentall rites and ceremonies of the Masse, althoughe not w[i]th all the businesse. The standinge of the Laver in the Quyre. The minister some tymes kneelinge, sometymes standinge, some tyme turninge to the people and sometymes to the Table. Wee haue here also aulter clothes as the Corporall and such other furnitures as shalbe appointed: And as many Masse clothes for him that celebrateth as yt shall please authority to enioyne Wherfore70v Wherfore, whatsoever hirelinge shall embrace this book hee shalbee turned into a masse- prieste, and whosoever doth countenance such com[m]union doth countenance a masse.

Wee haue also a greate nomber of Festivals dayes and sett feastes. And it woulde bee to prolixe to pointe out all the {trashe} and trumpery of the book.

Againe suppose there were noe faulte in the matter yet there is error in the formes and orders: For some formes are here p[re]scribed that are used in the popishe Churche and in the same termes: And wee oughte not to conforme in termes of publique worshippe w[i]th Antichristian synagoges, nor to bee tyed to there termes and phrases, yf our Churche bee not a member of ther churche seinge wee may use and haue used better formes./

Here wee haue Gospells and Epistles appropriated to sett tymes and dayes orderly as they haue in the Masse book. Wee haue also formes of prayinge rather lik playinge then prayinge from deliuerances from Tempestes thunders and such lik when there is noe appearance of danger And there are also answeres and sett repetitions, chapters and Creede: much Can[n]onicall scripture to edification om[m]itted by readinge of mattens and Evensonges and some Apocripha taken in./

Nowe suppose there were noe faulte in matter or forme yet wee cannot receave the book. For admitte yt were framed all of scripture phrases and sentences, yet yt bringethe a readinge minister and there w[i]th ignorance and blyndenesse upon the people. For yf an ignorante Asse cann but reade this book and gett orders, hee may solemnize marriage, minister the supper of the Lorde and sufficiently discharge the function of ministration. On the other side the ableste preacher may use noe other wordes in the tyme of com[m]on prayer and ministration of the sacram[en]tes then are p[re]scribed in the book. Soe wee shall make an Asse a minister, and the ableste minister an Asse. The mattens shall haue place before preachinge and oftentymes shall stande in steede of yt.

The Englishe service booke was tempered in the begin[n]inge soe farre to the humor of the Papistes that the Pope offred to ratifie yt upon a Condycon: But it hath ever bynn the occasion of much greife and trouble amongst the godly and never had quiett possession amongst them synce the abolishinge of popery but hath bynn generally detested of the people of better note, as hath appeared in sondry p[ar]liam[en]tes whoe haue refused to ratifie yt. This book is the same but more subtelly polished w[i]th some alterations & additions./

Yf wee embrace yt wee shall bee made a wounder to the worlde for our defection./

Followe not hyrelings and deceiptfull guiders to yo[u]r owne p[er]dition, and overthrowe of religion. Remember what the Prophet Esay saide, The leaders of the people cause them to erre, and they whoe are ledde by them are deceaved./


No introduction.


British Library, Additional MS 35331, ff. 70r-70v, Diary of Walter Yonge

Languages: English

Creation date: 1637


No authors.

Keywords (Text Type)

  • arguments

Keywords (Text Topics)

  • Scottish Church
  • Reformation
  • Presbyterianism
  • ecclesiastical conflict
  • liturgy
  • Book of Common Prayer
  • episcopacy

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