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Loss and Gain

John Henry Newman

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Book Excerpt: 
. . .sent the principle of simplicity and evangelical poverty; they even have a dress of their own, like monks. The Independents represent the rights of the laity; the Wesleyans cherish the devotional principle; the Irvingites, the symbolical and mystical; the High Church party, the principle of obedience; the Liberals are the guardians of reason. No party, then, I conceive, is entirely right or entirely wrong. As to Dr. Brownside, there certainly have been various opinions entertained about his divinity; still, he is an able man, and I think you will gain good, gain good from his teaching. But mind, I don't recommend him; yet I respect him, and I consider that he says many things very well worth your attention. I would advise you, then, to accept the good which his sermons offer, without committing yourself to the bad. That, depend upon it, Mr. Reding, is the golden though the obvious rule in these matters."

Charles said, in answer, that Mr. Vincent was overrating h. . . Read More

Community Reviews

Newman is an excellent controversialist, but there is perhaps a reason he is not primarily remembered for his novels. The book is interesting for its insights into the mind of a convert - something Newman is well qualified to write upon, and as a piece of controversy literature in a narrative set...more

Maybe I'm weird, but I really enjoyed this book. I like Newman a lot and it didn't bother me that the 'plot' was thin. It just made the debate more interesting that it was framed by a story.

Almost everything depends at Oxford, in the matter of acquaintance, on proximity of rooms. You choose your friend, not so much by your tastes, as by your staircase.

I, an atheist in a secular age, found more to enjoy in this novel than in many others which have not been so neglected. (At present t...more

anglicans can't recover from this

ENGLISH: A novel about the conversion of a young man (an Oxford student) from a High Church Anglican into a Catholic. Although the book was published just three years after Newman's own conversion, this is not a fictional account of his own experience, which is described in his Apologia Pro Vita...more

Like much of Newman’s work, the writing of his most famous novel came about in response to a particular controversy. The occasion that prompted this work was the publication of ‘From Oxford to Rome: And how it fared with some who lately made the journey’ by Elizabeth Harris, a convert to Catholic...more

In his "Inside the Whale," Orwell complains that there are no good Catholic novelists. I racked my brain for Catholic novelists who could refute this claim. Part of my failure to come up with one stems from my own ignorance--I have not read anything by Graham Greene or Evelyn Waugh. Also, the nov...more

Mostly interesting as a historical curiosity. This novel was written by Blessed John Henry Newman following his conversion to the Catholic Faith. Newman was a solid theologian and thinker, but not a very good novelist. The characters do little more than voice a variety of theological opinion, a g...more

Curious I should come across this particular book in the library now that I'm a student in the UK. I first heard of Newman through Joyce's A Portrait of the Artist as a Young Man . When I saw the book I remembered Stephen declared Newman the best prose writer and I could not but read it myself. I...more

A Catholic conversion novel, this book isn't something I would've picked up on my own. But, as it was first on the schedule for the Brit Lit required reading, I found myself slogging through more pages than I would've like to find out when and how, exactly, Charles Reding chooses the Catholic fai...more

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