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soon after, received a note, informing them that the Victory was telegraphed not to go into port, and begging they would prepare every thing for his departure. This is the true history of that affecting affair. Her ladyship feels, most severely, that she was the cause of his going; but, as she loved his glory, she could not resist giving him such advice. It is, however, the general opinion of those who best knew his lordship, that he would, in all probability, have fretted himself to death had he not undertaken this expedition.
Relative to the battle at Copenhagen, we are furnished with some private accounts, and an interesting correspondence between the English viceadmiral and the Danish adjutant general, Lindholm, but they are too long for us to quote. Lord Nelson's disobedience of the commander in chief's signal is unequivocally stated: but it is denied that our fleet would have suffered a repulse if the flag of truce had not taken effect; and M. Lindholm admits, that the final result was a defeat on their side, though not an inglorious one. We do not consider it as yet ascertained that the issue would have been similar if the action had been continued.
Another instance of the amiable feelings of Nelson occurs in his conduct towards sir Robert Calder, whom he had orders to send home from the Mediterranean for an inquiry into his conduct in a previous action with the enemy; and it is much to be lamented, for sir Robert's sake, and probably for the publick cause, that lord N's generous and judicious advice was not followed. Mr. Harrison thus states the circumstance:
On lord Nelson's arrival in the Mediterranean, he had felt it his most difficult task to send home sir Robert Calder. “I had never," said his lordship, speaking on this subject to his confidential friends, "but two enemies in the profession, that I know of; sir Robert Calder and sir John Orde: nor do I feel conscious of having ever given any of them any just cause of offence. However," added this excellent and exalted man, "I will, at least, endeavour to make sir Robert love me." Accordingly, on communicating his orders to this unfortunate commander, he earnestly advised him not to return home immediately; but to serve with himself on the expected glorious occasion, after which there could be nothing to apprehend from any trivial inquiry respecting what might previously have happened. Sir Robert, however, though he could not but feel sensible of his lordship's kindness, was resolved by no means to protract his justification; and iord Nelson, finding him determined to go home, as a last proof of tenderness and respectful consideration for a brother officer thus disagreeably situated, insisted that, instead of sir Robert's departing in a frigate, as directed, he should, at least, have the honour of returning in his own ninety-gun ship, ill as it could, at this eventful crisis, be spared from that station. Thus did the hero willingly hazard a degree of censure from his country, through excess of feeling for sir Robert Calder; nor is it altogether an extravagant impossibility that, to this generous action, he owed even his own death, which the addition of a ship of such force might perhaps have prevented. In writing to the honourable captain Blackwood a second letter, dated the 14th, soon after sir Robert Calder's departure, his lordship feelingly says: "Sir Robert is gone. Poor fellow! I hope he will get well over the inquiry." What a lesson is here of Christian virtue, left by our incomparable hero for the contemplation and admiration of mankind. It is asserted, on no light authority, that sir Robert Calder had formerly, rather rashly, advised a court-martial on our hero, for his departure from his commander in chief's orders on the memorable 14th of February; when the great earl of St. Vincent, with a glorious, noble, and dignified disdain, instantly replied: “You would, then, try a man for knowing better how to act than yourself."
Shortly before the commencement of the fatal battle of Trafalgar, the author relates, lord Nelson took leave of the captain of the Euryalus by saying: "My dear Blackwood, I shall never again speak to you;" and it may be supposed, from all circumstances, that he considered it as probable that his career would be terminated in the approaching combat.
Though we have quarrelled with the profusion and bad taste of the encomiastick expressions employed by this biograpner, yet we have always considered lord Nelson as an eminently great character in his profession; and
LESSONS FOR YOUNG PERSONS-RETREAT OF THE SWALLOW. 407
the more intimately we regard him, in all the various parts of his arduous duties, the more are we disposed to pronounce that he was a wonderful man. His actions and his habits should be the study of every British youth who is destined for the military profession, either on land or at sea; and the present volumes, as affording a near view of him, through the medium of his own letters, despatches, conversation, and actions, form a very interesting and valuable text-book.
FROM THE LITERARY PANORAMA.
Lessons for Young Persons in Humble Life. 12mo pp. 336. Price 3s. 6d. London, 1808. In the press of James Humphreys, Philadelphia, 1809.
THIS volume appears to us to contain as pleasing an assemblage of pieces calculated to answer its purpose, as any we have ever inspected. Some are in prose, others are in verse. As several slight variations are made in them from their originals, we do not recommend these to the library of the classical reader; but the library of the cottage will find the volume no unacceptable addition; whether by present or by purchase. We mean nothing invidious, when we add, that English stories, exclusively, should be put into the hands of English youth: for, how should they understand, with proper allowances, stories connected with foreign manners?
FROM THE BRITISH CRITICK.
Observations on the Brumal Retreat of the Swallow. To which is annexed, a copious Index to many Passages relating to this Bird ancient and modern Authors. By Philo-chelidon. Second Edition, with Additions. 8vo. 32 pp. 2s. 1808.
WHY, in a first, and still more in a second edition, this author should conceal himself under a feigned name, when he presents to the publick so very sensible and scholar-like a production as the present, we cannot easily comprehend. No one can take offence at what is written upon swallows, nor can it be uncreditable to any man, however situated, to have inquired diligently, or reasoned carefully, on a subject of so general curiosity, as that of the migration of swallows. There is not, perhaps, any other fact relating to natural history, that has been so frequently the topick of narrative or inquiry in popular publications.
Philo-chelidon is decisive for the migration, and thinks that all the instances related of the birds being found torpid, in the water, or in other situations, so far as they are correct, have been accidental, and partial deviations from the general habits of the bird. The authorities quoted by this author are so important, with respect to the departure of this tribe, its being seen in its passage at sea, with its arrival at Senegal, and the warmer parts of Africa, soon after its disappearance in Europe; and his reflections upon them are so judicious, that we should hope to find the question laid at rest for the future; and the analogy of nature in this, as well as other migratory birds, finally established. The index of passages, in ancient and modern authors, on the subject of the swallow, is one of the most copious we have seen of such a kind: and, on the whole, the tract is so sensible, that we hope this lover of swallows will be so far a lover of honest fame as to give his real name to the publick.
SPIRIT OF THE MAGAZINES.
ACCOUNT OF LORD STAIR.
GEORGE II. on his return to London, after the battle of Dettingen, could, with difficulty, bear the sight of lord Stair. He could not forgive his lordship's reproaching him for the danger which threatened the English army, in case the king had obstinately persisted in leaving it in the camp which it occupied, and where it would have been completely defeated, if the duke de Grammont, by his rashness, had not saved it. Lord Stair, as proud as he was skilful in war, having soon perceived the king's dislike, and being little disposed to bear the shame of a formal disgrace, was on the point of retiring to his estate in Scotland, when he received the following letter.
"Your bravery is well known: but will you have the courage to go, tomorrow night, to the entrance of Somerset house, where you will meet one who (if you dare follow him) will conduct you to a part of the town, not much frequented, but where you will find one who is impatient to see you, and to discover secrets which are of more importance than you imagine, and which cannot be disclosed in a letter. If you are afraid this should be a plot on your purse, bring nothing valuable about you."
We may conceive his lordship's surprise at the reading of this note. At first he took it for a trick of some secret enemy; or some affair of gallantry, the heroine of which had probably her reasons for so acting. However, he determined to go. He, therefore, after providing himself with a sword and a brace of good pistols, went to Somerset house, and found there a man, who, without speaking, made him a sign to follow him. After walking for about an hour, they came into a street almost empty, where the conductor knocked at the door of a small, old house. When it was opened, he said: "Walk in, my lord," and the door was shut upon them. The intrepid nobleman, holding his sword in one hand and a pistol in the other, went up the staircase and entered a room, the furniture of which seemed very ancient. "Come in, my lord (said a faint voice issuing from a bed) come in, you have nothing to fear. Pray sit down on the chair near my bed, and we will converse together." "Very well," said lord S. "but make haste and tell me the reason of this odd adventure." "You are hasty, my lord, but have patience. Lay down your arms: take that seat, and come and look at me.” His lordship, surprised at such authoritative commands, to which he was little accustomed, got up, took the lamp, went to the bed, and remained stupified at the sight of an old man, pale and thin, with a long white beard, and whose eyes were instantly fixed upon him. "Look at me, my lord," said he, "I am still alive; I owe to you the only true pleasure I have tasted these many, many years. Age and misfortunes, have they entirely effaced the marks of one who is nearly related to you, and who is delighted to find in you features which are most dear to him?" His lordship, still more astonished, looked at the old man, and unable to account for the different emotions which agitated him, spoke not a word. "Stoop," said the old man, "and you will find, under my bed, a box which contains, papers capable of
amply repairing the losses which your family has suffered by the civil wars." His lordship having placed the box on the bed, sat down again on the chair. "Here, my lord," said the old man, “here are copies of the sales of three of the principal seats belonging to your ancestors, which your great grandfather sold, or rather pretended to sell, during the troubles. Here are also the letters of the pretended buyers, by which you may immediately recover the estates on your arrival in Scotland. Precautions have been taken to prevent any disputes." What was his lordship's astonishment when he saw these three contracts of estates, which he knew formerly belonged to his house: "Ah!" cried he, with transport, "Ah! who are you, respecta ble and benevolent old man, to whom I owe more than to my own father? Speak, I beg of you! favour me with the name of so generous a benefactor in whom I am so singularly interested, and whose days Heaven seems to have prolonged, that he may find in me, the most tender and respectful of friends, and the most grateful of men!" "Leave me, my dear lord," said the old man, in haste, "I am too weak to bear a longer conversation, leave. me, I beg; take that box and bid adieu to an old man, who thinks himself less unfortunate since he has had the happiness of holding you in his arms." "Ah! whoever you are," said lord S. " and whatever reasons you may have to conceal the name of so generous a man, can you have the cruelty to oblige me to obey you? To abandon you in such a situation, without friends, without help, without-." "Stop, my lord! it is with pleasure I see in you such generous sentiments; but know that your friend (since you think him worthy of that title) however unfortunate he may be in other respects, is still free from want; therefore, if you wish to oblige me, leave me, my lord, instantly; nay, do more, and believe me I have a right to demand it: swear to me that you will never come here again, nor ever search after me, unless I send for you." His lordship seeing by his tone of voice that he would not be refused, promised to obey him; once more embraced him; and then left him with tears in his eyes. On his return home he immediately opened the box, and found a great number of papers which he judged would be of great use to him. Next morning, as he was preparing (notwithstanding his promise) to return to the old man, he was suddenly stopped by the following letter, sealed with his own arms, and to his extreme surprise, signed George Stair.
"Do not return to me, my dear lord, for you will not find me. If it had been only to tell you who I am, that is your great grandfather, who has so long been supposed dead, and who justly deserved to be so; I should not have opposed your just desire of knowing your benefactor; but the consequences which I foresaw of so interesting a scene, too much so for my weak age to bear, made me dread to satisfy your curiosity, upon circumstances, which far from offering to you so dear and respectable a relation as you imagined, would only have shown to you a wretch-a monster less worthy of pity than of horrour!
"My father died a few months after my birth. My mother soon followed him. I was left to the care of an aunt, sister to my father, who brought me up so tenderly that (though she was the cause of my crime) I still retain the most grateful remembrance of her in my heart. I was scarce seventeen, when, ck with indignation, at seeing my countrymen armed against their lawil sovereign, I formed the design of tendering to king Charles I. the offer of my fortune and sword; but what was my astonishment when at disclosing my intention to my good aunt, I saw her, trembling, lift her hands to heaven, and look at me with a kind of horrour. Surprised and afflicted at the state she was in, and turning with impatience to know the reason: "You
force me then to tell you," cried she, bursting into tears. "Know then that the prince you are so desirous of serving, is the author of my shame and of your father's death. I was about fifteen, and among the attendants who waited on his mother, when the wretch, imposing on my age and credulity, by the most sacred oaths, contrived to seduce me-In short, I was ruined. The perfidious prince, soon after, went to Spain, in hopes of marrying the infanta. I should have been entirely lost, if your father had not come to London. To him I was obliged to own my misfortune and the consequences which I dreaded. That dear brother, afflicted even to tears, ran immediately to the queen, obtained permission to take me away, and sent me to one of his seats near Edinburgh, where I remained till I was perfectly recovered. Alas!" added she, "I was doomed to see him no more. The grief which he conceived for my undoing soon killed him, and his worthy wife, who after bringing you into the world, survived only a month." Such, my dear nephew, were the secret and deplorable motives which reduced me to that obscurity in which I have since lived, and of which you are alone acquainted. Judge now, my friend, if after the care I have taken of your infancy, and the education I have procured you, say, can you devote your fortune and arms to the author of so many calamities, to a barbarian who has carried death into the breasts of your parents, and into mine eternal remorse?" "No!" cried I, " by G**! no! the wretch is unworthy of life, and he shall die by my hand!" To tell you, my lord, by what means as refined as dangerous, my fury against the king continually increasing, was at last able to fulfil my revenge and execrable oath; to tell you all the events, and the excess of remorse which soon followed my crime, would be now too grievous in my weak state to relate. Be satisfied with knowing, that you may abhor me as much as I detest myself; that the executioner of king Charles I, who appeared on the scaffold under a mask, was in fact no other than your unworthy, too guilty great grandfather, Sir George Stair."
From 1649 (when Charles I. was beheaded) to 1743 (when the battle of Dettingen was fought) there is an interval of 94 years. On a supposition that sir George Stair was 20 years old when he committed his crime, his age in 1743 must have been 114 years.
The anonymous author of these memoirs, adds; that whatever were the emotions of lord Stair at reading this letter, his first care was to look for the street and house where he had seen his great grandfather; but finding the house empty, he had learnt from the neighbours that it had only been occupied since eight days; that it was never known by whom; that since the preceding night the servants had abandoned it, furnished as it was; that they could not tell of whom the tenant held the house; the proprietor being long since settled in America.
ON NAUSCOPY, OR THE ART OF DISCOVERING SHIPS AT A GREAT DISTANCE FROM LAND.
NAUSCOPY is the art of discovering the approach of ships, or the neighbourhood of lands, at a considerable distance,
This knowledge is not derived either from the undulation of relwes, or from the subtilty of sight; but merely from observation of the horizon, which discovers signs indicating the proximity of large objects. On the approximation of a ship towards the land, or towards another ship, there appears, in the atmosphere, a meteor of a particular nature, which, with a little attention, is visible to any person.