London: Burns & Oates, 1961. Octavo, original green cloth, green top edge, original dust jacket. Minor spotting to fore-edge, mild toning to spine of price-clipped dust jacket. Near-fine. Item #978
"THE WHOLE CREATION FLOATS...IN THE OCEAN OF GOD'S ALMIGHTY LOVE" Orchard Books edition of Frederick William Faber's The Creator and the Creature—the successor to the Burns Oates edition of Faber's Growth in Holiness. Inspired by John Henry Newman, Faber converted to Catholicism in 1845, and he labored in Newman's shadow as the first Superior of the London Oratory. Largely overlooked as a writer, the jacket copy speaks of a revival of interest in Faber's work: "After nearly a century of virtual dismissal as a Victorian popularizer of Italianate devotions and writer of sentimental hymns, Frederick William Faber has now begun to be restored to his position as one of the foremost figures in the rebirth of Catholic life in England." Faber was known mostly for bringing continental perspective to English hymns and spiritual writing, but never lost his evangelical roots. "When Faber lit his tapers in King William Street, Strand, processed about with his Neapolitan Madonna, preached fervently at suffocating Benedictions, he also lit candles in the darkened hearts of men."
First published in 1858, the book consists of three parts: Book I. The Case stated between the Creator and the Creature, Book II. The Difficulties of Creative Love, Book III. Objections Considered. This valuable edition (described as "the essential Faber") features a lengthy Preface by Father Faber's biographer, Ronald Chapman, and a shorter Biographical Note: "An Evangelical by temperament and a Tractarian by principle, he upheld both sides of his religion with tremendous poetic exaggeration—to the disgust of both parties. He was far happier Ambleside talking Tractarianism with Wordsworth, writing long nature poems, or traveling abroad scrutinizing continental theology." Chapman's Preface captures the central theme: "The argument is briefly stated. Creation is an act of divine love. Each soul is created because God loves it. Having created it God pursues it with love." Includes Faber's original extended dedication to St. Matthew: "Who left All for God, Self and the World and Wealth, at God's One Word." Printed Cum Permissu Superiorum.