Withers had proposed a disputation against vestments, which the university would not allow; his thesis affirming the excommunicating power of the presbytery was sustained.
During this time the council of Basel, though abandoned by Cesarini and most of its members, persisted none the less, under the presidency of Cardinal Aleman, in affirming its oecumenical character.
But at the close of 1906 the Cape ministry formally reopened the question of federation, and at a railway conference held in Pretoria in May 1908 the Natal delegates agreed to a motion affirming the desirability of the early union of the self-governing colonies.
Anticipating the order of chronology slightly, it may be mentioned here that in 1873 Prince Edward Island (q.v.), which had in 1865 decisively rejected proposals of the Quebec conference and had in the following year repeated its rejection of federation by a resolution of the legislature affirming that no terms Canada could offer would be acceptable, now decided to throw in its lot with the Dominion.
Works, p. 166) has defended Grotius, affirming that his work "is perhaps the most complete that the world has yet owed, at so early a stage in the progress of any science, to the genius and learning of one man."