Examining Chaplain to the Bishop of Christchurch;
Author of "Johannine Problems and Modern Needs"
WHITCOMBE & TOMBS LIMITED.
Chapter I. Early Life and Work at Eton
Chapter II. Country Life--Mortimer
Chapter III. The Canterbury Settlement
Chapter IV. Bound for New Zealand
Chapter V. The Office of a Bishop
Chapter VI. First Missionary Tour
Chapter VII. Travel and Its Incidents
Chapter VIII. The Bishop and the Diggers
Chapter IX. The Bishop in Council
Chapter X. Visit to England--The Primacy--New Difficulties
Chapter XI. The Bishop and the Young
Chapter XII. The Cathedral
Chapter XIII. The Later Episcopate
Chapter XIV. Private and Domestic Life
Chapter XV. Closing Years and Death
The first edition of this book appeared in 1903, and all the copies were soon sold. Various circumstances have prevented the publication of a reprint. This is not altogether a matter for regret, for during the interval much new and valuable material has come to light. In 1906 a number of documents and letters were found by Dr. Gerald Harper in London which have enabled me to give for the first time an adequate account of the Bishop's early life and of the important work which he accomplished at Eton. The travels of the first year in New Zealand have been recalled by Archdeacon Harper and the chapter which records his reminiscences will probably be found of exceptional interest. For the journeys of the subsequent years Canon Stack has kindly allowed me to draw at will upon his entertaining booklet "Through Canterbury and Otago with Bishop Harper in 1859-60" (Akaroa Mail Office). I have made liberal use of the permission thus granted, but there are plenty of good things left in Canon Stack's work which ought to be in the hands of every one who is interested in the old days of New Zealand.
To insert all this new material in the narrative has involved no slight labour. In order to make room for it some of the old matter has been cut out, several of the chapters re-written, and the size of the whole work considerably increased. Chapters I. and II. VI. and VII. are almost entirely new; chapters VIII. and XV. have received considerable additions; the rest, though carefully revised, remain much as before, and may still claim the sanction of those authorities who were kind enough to read them in the original manuscript, viz., the late Sir John Hall for chapter IX.; the Hon. W. Montgomery, the Hon. C. C. Bowen, and W. Guise Brittan, Esq., for chapter XI.; and the Rev. Canon Knowles for chapters XII. and XIII. The proofs of the new edition have been kindly read by the Rev H. E. East, Vicar of Leithfield.
The peculiar difficulty which confronts the biographer of Bishop Harper is that which arises from the modesty of the bishop himself. This amiable quality prevented him from writing down any but the most meagre records of his life and thoughts, and it conspired with the fear of alarming his family to seal even his lips on the subject of his personal adventures. An interesting indication of this anxiety may be found in the fact that whenever he fell from his horse he never recorded the event in English, but always in Latin. These falls were fairly frequent at first, and the recurring note "Ab equo dejectus, Illaesus. D.G." must have signified a good deal, but it was evidently the writer's wish to conceal the disquieting information from his wife and daughters and yet to record the gratitude he felt toward his divine Preserver.
Residents in Otago and Southland will find the bishop's travels through their country more fully described here than in the former edition, and I have inserted a brief account of the Jenner episode, but on the whole the book is still true to its original title "Bishop Harper and the Canterbury Settlement." The aims of the founders of Canterbury and of the first bishop were the same, but when the colonising machinery broke down the man succeeded. Therein lies the moral of the tale.
H. T. P.