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good-will: I will at least strive to the utmost to give my worthy benefactors no reason to think their pains thrown away. If I should not be able to abound in riches, yet, by God's help, I will strive to pluck that palm which the greatest Artists of foregoing ages have done before ine: I will strive to leave my name behind me in the world, if not in the splendour that some have, at least with some inarks of assiduity and study; which, I can assure you, shall never be wanting in me. What! though the path to honour is rough, and hard to gain, yet so it is ordained : the honour gained, comes so much the sweeter for the trouble, and thoroughly repays the assiduity and labour of the Artist. Who can bear to hear the names of Raphael, Titian, Michael Angelo, &c. the most famous of the Italian masters, in the mouths of every one; and not wish to be like them? And, to be like them, we must study as they have done, take such pains, and labour continually like them: the which shall not be wanting on my side, I dare affirm: so that, should I not succeed, I may rest contented, and say, I have done my utmost. God has blessed me with a mind to undertake ; and I hope, with His help, to persevere firmly, and to reap the pleasure of making a figure in the world, as well as they have done. You, dear Madam, will excuse my vanity : you know me, from
from my childish days, to have been a vain boy, always desirous to execute something to gain me praises from every one; always scheming and imitating whatever I saw done by any body. But I fear I shall tire you ; so I will change the subject. I propose coming down about April
, in the time of vacation at the Royal Academy.”
In the summer of the year 1771, Mr. Strutt was first introduced to the British Museum. He was there employed to make some drawings for a gentleman. The rich stores of Science and of Art, which there arrested his notice, tended to give a new bias to his vigorous iinagination : he embraced in idea the grand projects which his subsequent labours brought to maturity.
June 27, 1771, Mr. Strutt says, in a letter to a friend, “ Í hope, and indeed every thing assures me, I shall soon be settled: I am about a work at the Museum on my own account; and only wait till that is completed, to come to Stratford. I have consulted with some people who understand the nature of such works; and they all give me great hopes of making a tolerable profit of it: besides which, it will intro duce me still further in the world; which is of some consequence to one in my situation *."
In another letter, dated London, Aug. 21, 1773, he says, “I would not only be a great Antiquary, but a refined Thinker: I would not only discover antiquities, but would, by explaining their use, render them useful. Such vast funds of knowledge lie hid in the antiquated remains of the earlier ages: these I would bring forth, and set in their true light.”
In 1773, Mr, Strutt published his first literary production, the “Regal and Ecclesiastical Antiquities of England ;” and in June 1774, the first volume of what he then called his“ great work,” viz.“Horda Angel-Cynnan;" or, Manners and Customs of the Englisht.
Of his unwearied diligence in the pursuit of this second work, his own words may afford the most satisfactory evidence. Jan, 29, 1774, he thus writes to a friend : “ If you knew the whole extent of my business at this present moment, you would pity me: for, having so many things upon my head at once, I can scarcely find a leisure moment: what with engraving of plates, correcting and writing for the press, and making my drawings, my whole time, from the morning till nine or ten at night, is quite taken up."
* The postscript to this letter contains this observation : ** Pray excuse the shocking hand: I am a sad writer : what is extraordinary, when I first began to draw, I wrote a good hand; but drawing spoiled it entirely."
+ In a letter to his mother, June 8, 1974, he informs her, that “ he has lately published the first volume of his work, which meets with more success than he expected ; and affords the highget gratification to all who have seen it."
In August 1774, Mr. Strutt married his cousin, Anne Blower, daughter of Mr. Barwell Blower, of Bocking, in Essex, bays-maker. He then resided in Duke-street, opposite Portland-chapel.
In 1775, he published a second volume of his
Manners and Customs:" and in 1776, he added a third Volume to this work ; though his first design was to have comprised the whole in two volumes *.
In 1777, Mr. Strutt again claimed public patronage fora new work, the “Chronicle of England;" a volume of which then appeared: and in the subsequent year, he brought forward a second volume of this work. It was indeed his intention to have extended the Chronicle to six volumes; but the want of due encouragement compelled him to relinquish his design : and this work must be regarded as a complete performance merely as far as it goes :
On the 24th of August 1778, Mrs. Strutt gave birth to a daughter: and on the 15th of the following month she was herself cut off in early life; for she had not completed her 24th year. To attempt to describe what her inconsolable Husband felt on the occasion, were a useless labour. His grief was poignant, and durable; for till his latest moments he fondly cherished the memory of his Wife 1.
* See his preface to the third volume.
+ The writer of this article has been confirmed in his own opinion respecting the merits of Mr. Strutt's Chronicle, by the testimony of a gentleman, of the most cultivated mind and the finest talents; who declares that it contains much valuable in. formation, and does high credit to the Author,
| In 1779, Mr. Strutt published anonymously a short Poem descriptive of his recent heavy loss, In consequence of the .omission of the author's name, and from the contined distribution of the few copies that were printed, the Poem itself has become exceedingly rare. It is hoped, that the insertion of a part of this composition, susficient to exhibit the subject-matter of the whole, will not be deemed innworthy of a place here, in further continuation of this note. Though the Author was unknown to the Publick as a Poel, his talents in that path of Literature were by no means left uncultivated. The reader is referred to a dramatic Poem written by Mr. Strutt, intituled, “ Alfred," (or Antient Times ;) which was published about four years ago, in the fourth volume of his Tale called “ Queenhoo Hall."
She was buried in the ground belonging to the parish of St. Mary-le-bone. By her, Mr. Strutt had three
The three ensuing lines exhibit the title of the Poem. An Elegiac Poem : in different Measures; without Rhyme. To
the Memory of an Amiable and Virtuous Wife, her disconsolate Husband offers this grateful proof of his sincere affection.
NO more, thou woe-foreboding bird ,- no more,
children; Joseph, born May 28, 1775; William, born March 7, 1777; and Anne, born (as before men
That now she wears !-0 blessed Spirit, hear
“ Unhappy Babes ! no more shall ye behold
your MOTHER comes no more,
Hark! heard I not the mournful voice of Woe?
—None! No sound returns
I sought for Comfort in this hallow'd spot;