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The Cambridge History of English and American Literature in 18 Volumes (1907–21).
Volume VIII. The Age of Dryden.

XII. Divines of the Church of England 1660–1700

§ 22. Robert Nelson’s Companion for the Festivals and Fasts

But Robert Nelson, in his Companion for the Festivals and Fasts (1704), produced one of the most popular of all religious books, and the success which he achieved was deserved by the sincerity of his writing. Nelson did for the Church of England in prose, what Keble, more than a century later, did in poetry. He showed the romance of its past, the nobility of its ideal, the purity of its forms of prayer. His book, though it is not more than good, certainly not great, literature, had an influence which good work does not always achieve. It caught exactly the religious tone of honourable men trained in the traditions of anglicanism, such as Clarendon or Evelyn, or of typical characters, imaginary but very real, like Sir Roger de Coverly or Sir Charles Grandison. The religion which Nelson represented was that which Herbert has immortalised, the religion of an English gentleman; and his writing has the quietness and confidence which belongs to the character.