Gilbert Laws’ biography of Andrew Fuller [Andrew Fuller: Pastor, Theologian, Ropeholder (London: Carey Press, 1942)] is a rarity, possibly because it was published during the war years when paper was scarce. But due to the fact that it is an important document, here is his rendition of the entirety of C.H. Spurgeon’s letter to Andrew Gunton Fuller upon the former’s receiving the latter’s life of his father (on page 127):    

Venerable Friend,
I thank you for sending me your Andrew Fuller. If you had lived for a long time for nothing else but to produce this volume, you have lived to good purpose.  
I have long considered your father to be the greatest theologian of the century, and I do not know that your pages have made me think more highly of him as a divine than I had thought before. But I now see him within doors far more accurately, and see about the Christian man a soft radiance of tender love which had never been revealed to me either by former biographies or by his writings.  
You have added moss to the rose, and removed some of the thorns in the process.                                    
Yours most respectfully,                                                  
C.H. Spurgeon.    


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10 responses to “ADDING MOSS TO THE ROSE

  1. Allen R. Mickle, Jr.

    Dr. Haykin,

    Thank you so much for the reference. I know many quote this reference of Spurgeon but I have never seen it in context. It helps greatly. I am earnestly looking for a copy of Law’s biography though!


  2. Allen R. Mickle, Jr.

    For all those interested,

    Since it is difficult to find Law’s book around today, I have been in contact with Wipf and Stock publishers to see about the possibility of getting them reprinted. I’ll let you know how things go!

    Allen Mickle

  3. Allen R. Mickle, Jr.

    Does anyone have a copy of Law’s biography that they would be willing to loan to Wipf and Stock to get reprints made? Each copy would be $11.20 US for a minimum of 15 copies. Would anybody be interested in getting a copy?

    Allen Mickle

  4. DavidR

    It’s the sort of thing the good people at Banner of Truth ought to keep in print! Does anyone have any favoured contacts?

  5. Paul Brewster

    Dear Allen,

    Several years ago I used ILL to obtain a copy of Laws. I believe it came from either SWBTS or the Criswell College library. As I recall, the copy I received was clean.

    Don’t forget also that two useful volumes on Fuller are available from Paternoster, in the Studies in Baptist History and Thought series. Both volumes are excellent. Of the two, Morden’s volume comes closest to being a biography. The volume that Haykin edited spotlights Fuller’s work as an apologist. These books are pricey but essential to researching Fuller.

    So far as a reprint goes, either of the early biographies of Fuller (By John Ryland and JW Morris) would be of a more pressing need than Laws, in my opinion. Ryland’s work is especially hard to find and few libraries are willing to ILL a copy. When a library does have it, access is likely limited to use in a rare books room, which limits use considerably. Morris’s biography is more common in America, but still fairly hard to find.

    Paul Brewster

  6. Allen R. Mickle, Jr.


    Thanks for the info. I have and have read both volumes on Fuller in the Paternoster series. Both are quite excellent. I know Law’s is referenced quite a bit by many Fuller scholars so I figured, hey, why not try to get it reprinted. My alma mater has a clean copy so I’ll probably go to them first.

    Would anyone be interested in getting a copy though from Wipf and Stock if it was reprinted?


    Allen Mickle

  7. Paul Brewster


    That all said, yes, I’d purchase a copy if Laws is reprinted.


    Paul Brewster

  8. Steve Weaver


    I already emailed Allen and told him I would take one as well. Only 12 more copies to go . . .

  9. Allen R. Mickle, Jr.

    Does anyone happen to know a next of kin for Laws? Apparently the book is still under copyright but Wipf and Stock cannot track down the next of kin of Laws. Also, apparently the publisher is now defunct. Any help would be appreciated!

    Allen Mickle

  10. Allen R. Mickle, Jr.

    Looks like no reprinting of Laws. They cannot track down the estate to get reprint permission.


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