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THE SECRET HISTORY
THE OXFORD MOVEMENT
NEW PREFACE CONTAINING A REPLY TO CRITICS
PREFACE TO THE POPULAR EDITION.
THIS Popular Edition is issued at the urgent request of a large number of friends of the Protestant cause, who are anxious to bring the book within reach of the working classes. It is hoped that many of those to whom God has given wealth will purchase large quantities for free distribution amongst those who cannot afford to purchase even this Popular Edition. In view of the forthcoming General Election it is most important that the working men voters may clearly understand the importance of the issues with which they will have to deal, and the serious evils to Church and State which would follow the triumph of Priestcraft in the Church of England. The book has now stood the test of two years' sharp criticism
from the Ritualistic enemies of the Protestant religion, and with
the result that I have nothing to apologise for, and nothing to withdraw, except a slight error of date mentioned in the Preface to the Fifth Edition, which injures nobody. An additional proof of the secrecy and dread of publicity on the part of certain Ritualistic Societies has come to light since the issue of the sixth edition by the publication in the English Churchman, of February 23rd, 1899, of a correspondence between the Rev. G. J. Watts, Vicar of St. Mark’s, Oldham, and the Secretaries of the Ritualistic Societies therein named. Mr. Watts wrote as follows to the Rev. H. Montague Williers,
Vicar of St. Paul's, Knightsbridge:— ST. MARK's VICARAGE, OLDHAM, February 7th, 1899. DEAR SIR,-My attention has been called to your letter to the Bishop of EIereford of the 30th ult. You there state that “these societies to which I presume you allude are not secret societies. The names of members are published annually, and though not circulated as advertisements, are always procurable.” Will you be so kind as to tell me where I can obtain the last published lists of members and reports of the following societies, viz.:-(1) “C.B.S., (2) “s. S.C.,” (8) “A. P. U. C.,” (4) “O. C. R.,” (5) “S. O.,” (6) “G. A.S. Yours truly, G. J. WATTS. To THE REV. H. MoMTAGUE WILLIERs.