« PreviousContinue »
of Magdalen College, Oxford.' The following original letter by him, writlen when he was on his travels, will be pleasing to the admirers of his valuable works. It is taken from the original in the Bodleian Library, but to whom it was addressed does not appear.
:. “DEAR SIR, 1:“ I hope this will find you safe at Geneva, and that the adventure of the rivulet which you have so well celebrated in your last, has been the worst you have met, with in your journey thither. I can't but envy your being amongst the Alps, where you may see frost and snow in the dog days. We are here quite burnt-up, and are at least ten degrees nearer the sun than when you left us. I am very well satisfied 'twas in August that Virgil wrote his “ o quis me gelidis sub montibus Hæmi,” &c.Our days, at present, like those in the first chapter of Genesis, consist only of the evening and morning, for the Roman noons are as silent as the midnights of other countrys. But among all these inconveniencies, the greatest I suffer is from your departure, which is more afflicting to me than the caniculi. I am forced, for want of better compaly, to converse mostly with pictures, statues, and medals: for you must know that I deal very much in ancient coins, and can count out a sum in sesterces with as much ease as in pounds sterling. I am a great critic in rust, and can tell you the age of it at first sight. I am only in some danger of losing my acquaintance with our English money, for at present l'am much more used to the Roman.
“If you glean up any of our country news, be so kind as to forward it this way. Pray give Mr. Dashwood's and my very humble service to Sir Thomas Alston; accept of the same yourself from,
- Dear Sir, " Your most affectionate humble Servant,
- J. Addison."
FREDERIC HERVEY, EARL OF BRISTOL, AND LATE
BISHOP OF DERRY. [From Mr. Cole's MSS. in the British Museum.] MR.George Ashby,Rector of Barrow near Bury, calling upon me on Tuesday, March 19, 1782, with the master
Emanuel (Dr. Farmer), he told me that the Count, Bishop was most lively and entertaining, full of anecdotes and pleasant stories: and that he told him lately, on a visit to him, that being at the Grande Chartreuse, whilst the society were at dinner, he found the convent door shut; and knocking, the porter told him that no one was permitted to enter while the monks were at dinner; upon this he gave the porter a letter to the Abbot, from a neighbouring Bishop who had sent this recommendation, and in which the Bishop had called him his brother the Bishop of Derry. Immediately after the letter was delivered, the doors flew open, and the whole convent on their knees met his lordship and desired his blessing; which the bishop without ceremony delivered to them as he passed thein. No doubt they were ignorant of the Church the Bishop of Derry was of, and thought him some Catholic Bishop. Let this be as it may, he blessed them all, throwing out his benedictions with his hand. The monks, no doubt, when they were better informed, had different opinions of the efficacy of these benedictions.”
REVIEW OF NEW PUBLICATIONS.
The British Flag Triumphant ! or the Wooden Walls of
Old England : being "copies of the London Gazettes, containing the Accounts of the great Victories and Gallant Exploits of the British Fleets, during the last and present War, &c. 8vo. Rivingtons. A T first view such a publication as this may appear A remote from the proper objects of our review; but on consideration it will appear to deserve the most serious attention of all who have a real regard for the interests of the British empire, inasmuch as its direct and laudable tendency is to cherish those seeds of national valour, which, under Providence, have hitherto proved our main defeuce. It appears that this valuable collection has been prepared for gratuitous distribution among the officers and seamen of his Majesty's fleets, .“ As being calculated to nourish and keep alive that generous ardour and undaunted bravery, which have ever distinguished 3 B 2
the British navy; and, at the same time, to establish' from the example of so many illustrious commanders, the important truth, that CHRISTIAN PIETY is the firmest foundation of, and the strongest incentive to, DEEDS OF GLORY."
It is stated (and we believe justly)
“ That upon a moderate computation, not one in fifty of his Majesty's seamen (and a far less proportion of those on foreign stations,) ever sees the official accounts of those gallant actions in which he has taken so active a share ; and certainly not one in a thousand of the whole navy, has seen the several documents which are about to be presented to them as a free-will offering and lively testimony of the regard and esteem of their countrymen.” . · These facts furnish a strong argument in favour of such a publication as the present, independent of the value arising from a permanent record, which may serve as a constant stimulus to brave and virtuous exertions. The collection commences with Earl Howe's victory of the 1st June, and concludes with admiral Duckworth's, in the present year. There is one circumstance which adds to the value of this compilation : the names of the commanders of ships are in every instance given, which in several of the Gazette accounts of our great naval engagements, are wanting.
These proud narratives of British prowess, the contemplation of which must warm the breast of every one, who feels an interest in his country's glory, are introduced by an excellent “ Address to the officers, seamen, and mariners of his Majesty's fleets," which breathèg the fervent spirit of Christian patriotism. We regret that our limits do not enable us to present our readers the whole of this admirable composition ; but we cannot refrain from extracting a few passages. Alluding to theinteresting period when the news of the victory of Trafalgar was received, the writer observes,
“ The peculiarly propitious moment at which the intelligence arrived must not be forgotten; for, two days had scarcely elapsed, since every face had been clouded with despondency, at the success of our inveterate foe upon the Continent of Europe, till they were revived by the glorious, though modest accounts of Admiral Lord Collingwood, and recalled to a sense of the superintendence of an over-ruling Providence; our countrymen had, or seemed to have forgotten, that God ruleth in the king
doms of men; and that though heaviness may endure for a night, yet joy cometh in the morning. “The feelings which were thus excited in the breasts of those whom you and your brethren in arms had so bravely defended, manifested themselves in a mannerhighly creditable to the nation. Our pious Sovereign, believing like his noble and illustrious admiral, Lord Collingwood *, that the arm of the Almighty alone is strength, and that without his constant aid, the utmost efforts of man are nought, immediately required his people to assemble themselves, to return thanks to God for the success he had bestowed, and to implore the continuance of his favour to his fleets and armies. The inhabitants of Britain did not rest here; for being taught that no-life is pleasing to God that is not useful to man, and knowing that no prayers ascend with a sweeter memorial to the throne of Heaven, than when they are accompanied by a free-will offering of the liberal hand, in every church and chapel large and extensive contributions were made, for the relief of such of our brave seamen as were wounded, and for the comfort, consolation, and support of the widows and orphans of those “who fought with Nelson, and with Nelson fell.” Such a day of thanksgiving was never seen in England; every place of worship was crowded; every mouth was filled with praise to God; every hand was eager to bestow; the rich gave of their abundance; the poor most gladly threw in their mite.”
In an equally just and impressive manner is described the great national solemnity of the funeral of Lord Nelson, which is also improved in the true spirit of religion, and without the slightest tinge of cant or bombast.
“But (continues this pious and animated writer) amidst these more substantial proofs of British gratitude, it has occurred to many of your grateful and affectionate countrymen, many of whom have been eminently distinguished in your own profession, that a full account of the great and transcendent naval victories obtained by his Majesty's fleets during the last and present war, drawn from the most authentic sources, the Gazettes themselves, would not be an unacceptable present to You, and would be of singular and important benefit to those, who are just entering, or who may hereafter enter into the royal navy. To read a narrative of great and astonishing events, from which the most important advantages have resulted to the nation, is one of the most pleasing occupations of the true lover of his country; to recount the praises of men, who have been famous in their generation, men of renown, is ever a delightful task to the liberal and ingenuous mind. But when those men, so renowned for their wisdom and ability, so honoured by their country, and who were the glory of their times, were our own dear companions in danger, and our familiar friends; when the events recorded were achievements in which we ourselves acted a considerable part, the pleasure of perusing such documents must ever be a source of the highest gratification to those who are placed in such situations. This pleasure must be greatly enhanced, by recollecting, that these glorious deeds, of unexampled bravery and courage, are recorded in the manly and energetic language of the gallant chiefs who led you on to victory and glory ; recorded, not in the studied expressions of the closet, but in the simple, dignified, unpremedirated language of the heart. . .
* See Lord Collingwood's General Orders. who
“ No man, no sailor (it is added) can peruse these most affecting and interesting narratives, without recalling to mind, and applying to every one of them, the strong and emphatic question of the noble Collingwood, respecting the victory of Trafalgar, when he exclaims, “ Where can I find language to express my sentiments of the valour and skill which were displayed by the officers, the seamen, and marines, in the battle with the enemy, where every individual appeared a hero, ond on whom the glory of his country depended? The attack was irresistible, and the issue of it adds to the passage of our naval annals, a brilliant instance of what Britons can do, when their King and Country need their service.” On such scenes, and on praise bestowed from such a judge of your deserts, you may, my brave countrymen, meditate with pleasure; nay, in order to render yourselves deserving of a continuance of such praises, you must contemplate and study these accounts of the skill and valour of your commanders, the bravery of your companions, and your own firmness. It is your duty, that you may be ready and willing, at all times, to render similar services to your country in the day of her necessity; to'excite and invigorate one another, by recollecting, in the language of the same most gallant chief, Lord Collingwood," that the zeal of Lord Nelson, for the honour of his King, and for the interests of his Country, are ever to be held up as a shining example for a British seaman;" and when British seamen are led on by such examples, and excited to glory by the remembrance of the transcendent achievements of their predecessors in arms, and of themselves, imagination may conceive, but no language can describe the extent, to which their enthusiastic valour may transport them when fighting for their King, their Country, and their God. This publication will not only produce these effects upon yourselves, while still engaged in public service, still glorious by fighting the battles of your country; but when retired to enjoy the evening of life in the bosom of your families, it will afford you many a pleasing recollection; it will assist you again to fight over the battles you have so nobly won, it will enable you to inspire your children and grand-children' with the love of heroic deeds; and when they shall hear their ve