Page images
PDF
[ocr errors]

Courted by a numerous circle of acquaintances, whom he enlivened by his fallies of unrivalled wit, Bonnell Thornton died in 1768, at the early age of forty-four. Conscious of his approaching end, he summoned his family together, and smiling in the expectation of immortality, he cvinced, that innocent mirth and becoming fatire carry with them no stings to the grave, and with his hand on his pulse, counting their decline, and speaking of another world without terror, he placidly sunk into the arms of death. He had mentioned, that he had settled all things of a temporal nature, and named the bureau in which his will was laced ; but what was remarkable, the ock had been forced, and the drawer in which the will was said to be was found open. He, therefore, was esteemed to have died without a will. The education of his two sons and daughter fell to the lot of his widow, a lady of fingular piety and sense, and young Thornton and his elder brother were sent to a public school, from which they were afterwards removed to have their education finished at a private seminary, where there were only eight scholars. As in youth we often notice peculiar turns, so did oung Thornton then , display that inclination which lias since rendered him so conspicuous in the theatre of public life. Instead of devoting his play-hours and holidays, to juvenile recreations, he was either in the fields collecting wild plants for his garden, or laying gins for birds. He kept a large assortment of different pigeons, besides having every species of the English hawk. His manner of catch

[ocr errors][merged small]
[ocr errors][ocr errors][ocr errors][ocr errors][ocr errors]
[ocr errors][ocr errors]
[ocr errors][ocr errors]
[ocr errors][ocr errors][ocr errors][merged small][merged small][ocr errors][ocr errors][ocr errors][ocr errors]
« PreviousContinue »