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tion of under secretary of state, which he held for and in another denies, that Charles was insincere in two years. With a revenue of £1000 a-year (which dealing with his opponents. To illustrate his theory he considered opulence), the historian retired to his of the sudden elevation of Cromwell into importance, native city, where he continued to reside, in habits the historian states that about the meeting of parliaof intimacy with his literary friends, till his death, on ment in 1640, the name of Oliver is not to be found the 25th of August 1776. His easy good-humoured oftener than twice upon any committee, whereas the disposition, his literary fame, his extensive know-journals of the House of Commons show that before ledge and respectable rank in society, rendered his the time specified, Cromwell was in forty-five comcompany always agreeable and interesting, even to mittees, and twelve special messages to the Lords. those who were most decidedly opposed to the tone Careless as to facts of this kind (hundreds of which of scepticism which pervades all his writings. His errors have been pointed out), we must look at the opinions were never obtruded on his friends : he general character of Hume's history; at its clear threw out dogmas for the learned, not food for the and admirable narrative; the philosophic composure multitude.
and dignity of its style; the sagacity with which The history of Hume is not a work of high au- the views of conflicting sects and parties are estithority, but it is one of the most easy, elegant, mated and developed; the large admissions which and interesting narratives in the language. The the author makes to his opponents ; and the high striking parts of his subject are related with a pic- importance he everywhere assigns to the cultivaturesque and dramatic force; and his dissertations tion of letters, and the interests of learning and on the ate of parties and the tendency of particu- literature. Judged by this elevated standard, the lar events, are remarkable for the philosophical tone work of Hume must ever be regarded as an honour in which they are conceived and written. He was to British literature. It differs as widely from the too indolent to be exact; too indifferent to sympa- previous annals and compilations as a finished porthise heartily with any political party; too sceptical trait by Reynolds differs from the rude draughts on matters of religion to appreciate justly the full of a country artist. The latter may be the more force of religious principles in directing the course faithful external likeness, but is wanting in all that of public events. An enemy to all turbulence and gives grace and sentiment, sweetness or loftiness, to enthusiasm, he naturally leaned to the side of settled the general composition. government, even when it was united to arbitrary power; and though he could .shed a generous tear [State of Parties at the Reformation in England.] for the fate of Charles I. and the Earl of Strafford,' the struggles of his poor countrymen for conscience'
The friends of the Reformation asserted that nothing sake against the tyranny of the Stuarts, excited could be more absurd than to conceal, in an unknown with him no other feelings than those of ridicule tongue, the word of God itself, and thus to counteror contempt. He could even forget the merits act the will of heaven, which, for the purpose of uniand exaggerate the faults of the accomplished and versal salvation, had published that salutary doctrine chivalrous Raleigh, to shelter the sordid injustice to all nations; that if this practice were not very abof a weak and contemptible sovereign. No hatred surd, the artifice at least was very gross, and proved a of oppression burns through his pages. The care
consciousness that the glosses and traditions of the less epicurean repose of the philosopher was not clergy stood in direct opposition to the original text disturbed by any visions of liberty, or any ardent dictated by Supreme Intelligence ; that it was now aspirations for the improvement of mankind. Yet necessary for the people, so long abused by interested Hume was not a slavish worshipper of power. pretensions, to see with their own eyes, and to examine In his personal character he was liberal and inde- whether the claims of the ecclesiastics were founded pendent: he had early in life,' says Sir James on that charter which was on all hands acknowledged Mackintosh, conceived an antipathy to the Cal- to be derived from heaven ; and that, as a spirit of vinistic divines, and his temperament led him at research and curiosity was happily revived, and men all times to regard with disgust and derision that tending doctrines of different sects, the proper mate
were now obliged to make a choice among the conreligious enthusiasm or bigotry with which the rials for decision, and, above all, the Holy Scriptures, spirit of English freedom was, in his opinion, inse- should be set before them; and the revealed will of parably associated : his intellect was also perhaps God, which the change of language had somewhat too active and original to submit with sufficient obscured, be again by their means revealed to manpatience to the preparatory toils and long suspended kind. judgment of a historian, and led him to form pre
The favourers of the ancient religion maintained, mature conclusions and precipitate theories, which it then became the pride of his ingenuity to justify.' people see with their own eyes was a mere cheat, and
on the other hand, that the pretence of making the A love of paradox undoubtedly led to his formation
was itself a very gross artifice, by which the new of the theory that the English government was preachers hoped to obtain the guidance of them, and purely despotic and absolute before the accession of to seduce them from those pastors whom the laws of the Stuarts. A love of effect, no less than bis con. ancient establishments, whom Heaven itself, had apstitutional indolence, may have betrayed the his- pointed for their spiritual direction ; that the people torian into inconsistencies, and prompted some of were, by their ignorance, their stupidity, their neceshis exaggeration and high colouring relative to the sary avocations, totally unqualified to choose their unfortunate Charles I., his trial and execution. own principles ; and it was a niockery to set materials Thus, in one page we are informed that the height before them of which they could not possibly make of all iniquity and fanatical extravagance yet re- any proper use ; that even in the affairs of common mained-the public trial and execution of the so- life, and in their temporal concerns, which lay more vereign. Three pages farther on, the historian within the compass of human reason, the laws bad in remarks—The pomp, the dignity, the ceremony of a great measure deprived them of the right of private this transaction, corresponded to the greatest con- judgment, and had, happily for their own and the
ception that is suggested in the annals of human- public interest, regulated their conduct and behaviour; 7 kind; the delegates of a great people sitting in judg- that theological questions were placed far beyond the
ment upon their supreme magistrate, and trying sphere of vulgar comprehension ; and ecclesiastics him for his misgovernment and breach of trust." themselves, though assisted by all the advantages of With similar inconsistency he in one part admits, education, erudition, and an assiduous study of the science, could not be fully assured of a just decision ; feudal governments also, among the more southern except by the promise made them in Scripture, that nations, were reduced to a kind of system; and though God would be ever present with his church, and that that strange species of civil polity was ill fitted to inthe gates of hell should not prevail against her ; that sure either liberty or tranquillity, it was preferable to the gross errors adopted by the wisest heathens prove the universal license and disorder which had every how unfit men were to grope their own way through where preceded it. this profound darkness ; nor would the Scriptures, if It may appear strange that the progress of the arts, trusted to every man's judgment, be able to remedy, which seems, among the Greeks and Romans, to have on the contrary, they would much augment those fatal daily increased the number of slaves, should in later illusions ; that Sacred Writ itself was involved in so times have proved so general a source of liberty ; but much obscurity, gave rise to so many difficulties, con- this difference in the events proceeded from a great tained so many appearing contradictions, that it was difference in the circumstances which attended those the most dangerous weapon that could be intrusted into institutions. The ancient barons, obliged to maintain the hands of the ignorant and giddy multitude ; that themselves continually in a military posture, and the poetical style in which a great part of it was com- little emulous of eloquence or splendour, employed posed, at the same time that it occasioned uncertainty not their villains as domestic servants, much less as in the sense by its multiplied tropes and figures, was manufacturers ; but composed their retinue of freesufficient to kindle the zeal of fanaticism, and thereby men, whose military spirit rendered the chieftain forthrow civil society into the most furious combustion; midable to his neighbours, and who were ready to that a thousand sects must arise, which would pretend, attend him in every warlike enterprise. The villains each of them, to derive its tenets from the Scriptures ; were entirely occupied in the cultivation of their and would be able, by specious arguments, to seduce master's land, and paid their rents either in corn and silly women and ignorant mechanics into a belief of cattle, and other produce of the farm, or in servile the most monstrous principles ; and that if ever this offices, which they performed about the baron’s family, disorder, dangerous to the magistrate himself, re- and upon the farms which he retained in his own posceived a remedy, it must be froin the tacit acquies session. In proportion as agriculture improred and cence of the people in some new authority ; and it money increased, it was found that these services, was evidently better, without further contest or in- though extremely burdensome to the villain, were quiry, to adhere peaceably to ancient, and therefore of little advantage to the master ; and that the the inore secure, establishments.
produce of a large estate could be much more conre
niently disposed of by the peasants themselves, who [The Middle Ages-Progress of Preedom.]
raised it, than by the landlord or his bailiff, who were
formerly accustomed to receive it. A commutation Those who cast their eye on the general revolutions was therefore made of rents for services, and of money of society, will find that, as almost all improvements rents for those in kind; and as men, in a subsequent of the human mind had reached nearly to their state age, discovered that farms were better cultivated of perfection about the age of Augustus, there was a where the farmer enjoyed a security in his possession, sensible decline from that point or period ; and men the practice of granting leases to the peasant began to thenceforth gradually relapsed into ignorance and prevail, which entirely broke the bonds of servitude, barbarism. The unlimited extent of the Roman em- already much relaxed from the former practices. pire, and the consequent despotism of its monarchs, After this manner villanage went gradually into disextinguished all emulation, debased the generous use throughout the more civilised parts of Europe: spirits of men, and depressed the noble flame by which the interest of the master as well as that of the slave all the refined arts must be cherished and enlivened. concurred in this alteration. The latest laws which The military government which soon succeeded, ren- we find in England for enforcing or regulating this dered even the lives and properties of men insecure species of servitude, were enacted in the reign of Henry and precarious; and proved destructive to those vulgar VII. And though the ancient statutes on this head and more necessary arts of agriculture, manufactures, remain unrepealed by parliament, it appears that, and commerce ; and in the end, to the military art before the end of Elizabeth, the distinction of villain and genius itself, by which alone the immense fabric and freeman was totally though insensibly abolished, of the empire could be supported. The irruption of the and that no person remained in the state to whom the barbarous nations which soon followed, overwhelmed former laws could be applied. all human knowledge, which was already far in its Thus personal freedom became almost general in decline ; and men sunk every age deeper into igno- Europe ; an advantage which paved the way for the rance, stupidity, and superstition ; till the light of increase of political or civil liberty, and which, even ancient science and history had very nearly suffered a where it was not attended with this salutary effect, total extinction in all the European nations.
served to give the members of the community some of But there is a point of depression as well as of ex- the most considerable advantages of it. altation, from which human affairs naturally return in a contrary direction, and beyond which they seldom pass, either in their advancement or decline.
[Death and Character of Queen Elizabeth.] The period in which the people of Christendom were Some incidents happened which revived her tenderthe lowest sunk in ignorance, and consequently in dis- ness for Essex, and filled her with the deepest sorrow orders of every kind, may justly be fixed at the for the consent which she had unwarily given to his eleventh century, about the age of William the Con- execution. queror ; and from that era the sun of science, begin- The Earl of Essex, after his return from the fortuning to re-ascend, threw out many gleams of light, nate expedition against Cadiz, observing the increase which preceded the full morning when letters were of the queen's fond attachment towards him, took revived in the fifteenth century. The Danes and occasion to regret that the necessity of her service other northern people who had so long infested all required him often to be absent from her person, and the coasts, and even the inland parts of Europe, by exposed him to all those ill offices which his enemies, their depredations, having now learned the arts of more assiduous in their attendance, could employ tillage and agriculture, found a certain subsistence at against him. She was moved with this tender jeahome, and were no longer tempted to desert their in- lousy ; and making him the present of a ring, desired dustry in order to seek a precarious livelihood by him to keep that pledge of her affection, and assured rapine and by the plunder of their neighbours. The him that into whatever disgrace he should fall, what
ever prejudices she might be induced to entertain gilance, and address, are allowed to merit the highest against him, yet if he sent her that ring, she would praises, and appear not to have been surpassed by any immediately, upon sight of it, recall her former tender person that ever filled a throne: a conduct less rigoness, would afford him a patient hearing, and would rous, less imperious, more sincere, more indulgent to lend a favourable ear to his apology. Essex, not- her people, would have been requisite to form a perwithstanding all his misfortunes, reserved this pre- fect character. By the force of her mind she concious gift to the last extremity ; but after his trial trolled all her more active and stronger qualities, and and condemnation, he resolved to try the experiment, prevented them from running into excess : her heroand he committed the ring to the Countess of Notting- ism was exempt from temerity, her frugality from ham, whom he desired to deliver it to the queen. The avarice, her friendship from partiality, her active countess was prevailed on by her husband, the mortal temper from turbulency and a vain ambition: she enemy of Essex, not to execute the commission ; and guarded not herself with equal care or equal success Elizabeth, who still expected that her favourite would from lesser infirmities; the rivalship of beauty, the make this last appeal to her tenderness, and who desire of admiration, the jealousy of love, and the ascribed the neglect of it to his invincible obstinacy, sallies of anger. was, after much delay and many internal combats, Her singular talents for government were founded pushed by resentment and policy to sign the warrant equally on her temper and on her capacity. Endowed for his execution. The Countess of Nottingham fall- with a great command over herself, she soon obtained ing into sickness, and affected with the near approach an uncontrolled ascendant over her people; and while of death, was seized with remorse for her conduct; and she merited all their esteem by her real virtues, she baving obtained a visit from the queen, she craved also engaged their affections by her pretended ones. her pardon, and revealed to her the fatal secret. The Few sovereigns of England succeeded to the throne in queen, astonished with this incident, burst into a more difficult circumstances; and none ever conducted furious passion : she shook the dying countess in her the government with such uniform success and felibed; and crying to her that God might pardon her, city. Though unacquainted with the practice of tolebut she never could, she broke from her, and thence- ration—the true secret for managing religious factions forth resigned herself over to the deepest and most -she preserved her people, by her superior prudence, incurable melancholy. She rejected all consolation : from those confusions in which theological controversy she even refused food and sustenance; and, throwing had involved all the neighbouring nations: and herself on the floor, she remained sullen and immor- though her enemies were the most powerful princes able, feeding her thoughts on her afflictions, and de- of Europe, the most active, the most enterprising, the claring life and existence an insufferable burden to least scrupulous, she was able by her vigour to make her. Few words she uttered ; and they were all ex- deep impressions on their states; her own greatness pressive of some inward grief which she cared not to meanwhile remained untouched and unimpaired. reveal: but sighs and groans were the chief vent which The wise ministers and brave warriors who flourish. she gave to her despondency, and which, though they ed under her reign, share the praise of her success; discovered her sorrows, were never able to ease or as- but instead of lessening the applause due to her, they suage them. Ten days and nights she lay upon the make great addition to it. They owed, all of them, carpet, leaning on cushions which her maids brought their advancement to her choice; they were supported ber; and her physicians could not persuade her to by her constancy, and with all their abilities, they allow herself to be put to bed, much less to make trial were never able to acquire any undue ascendant over of any remedies which they prescribed to her. Her her. In her family, in her court, in her kingdom, she anxious mind at last had so long preyed on her frail remained equally mistress : the force of the tender body, that her end was visibly approaching; and the passions was great over her, but the force of her mind council being assembled, sent the keeper, admiral, was still superior; and the combat which her victory and secretary, to know her will with regard to her visibly cost her, serves only to display the firmness of
She answered with faint voice that as her resolution, and the loftiness of her ambitious senshe had held a regal sceptre, she desired no other than timents. a royal successor. Cecil requesting her to explain The fame of this princess, though it has surmounted herself more particularly, she subjoined that she the prejudices both of faction and bigotry, yet lies still would have a king to succeed her; and who should exposed to another prejudice, which is more durable that be but her nearest kinsman, the king of Scots ? because more natural, and which, according to the Being then advised by the archbishop of Canterbury different views in which we survey her, is capable to fix her thoughts upon God, she replied that she did either of exalting beyond measure or diminishing the fo, nor did her mind in the least wander from him. lustre of her character. This prejudice is founded on Her voice soon after left her; her senses failed ; she the consideration of her sex. When we contemplate fell into a lethargic slumber, which continued some her as a woman, we are apt to be struck with the hours, and she expired gently, without farther strug- highest admiration of her great qualities and extengle or convulsion (March 24), in the seventieth year sive capacity; but we are also apt to require some of her age and forty-fifth of her reign.
more softness of disposition, some greater lenity of So dark a cloud overcast the evening of that day, temper, some of those amiable weaknesses by which which had shone out with a mighty lustre in the eyes her sex is distinguished. But the true method of of all Europe. There are few great personages in his estimating her merit is to lay aside all these consitory who have been more exposed to the calumny of derations, and consider her merely as a rational being enemies and the adulation of friends than Queen placed in authority, and intrusted with the governElizabeth ; and yet there is scarcely any whose repu- ment of mankind. We may find it difficult to recon tation has been more certainly determined by the cile our fancy to her as a wife or a mistress ; but her unanimous consent of posterity. The unusual length qualities as a sovereign, though with some considerof ber administration, and the strong features of her able exceptions, are the object of undisputed applause character, were able to overcome all prejudices; and and approbation. obliging her detractors to abate much of their invectives, and her admirers somewhat of their panegyrics, have at last, in spite of political factions, and what is more, of religious animosities, produced a uniform DR WILLIAM ROBERTSON was born at Borthwick, judgnient with regard to her conduct. Her vigour, county of Edinburgh, in the year 1721. His father ber constancy, her magnanimity, her penetration, vi- | was a clergyman, minister of Borthwick, and after
DR WILLIAM ROBERTSON.
wards of the Greyfriars church, Edinburgh: the the art of the writer to produce a romantic and inson was also educated for the church. In 1743 teresting narrative, than with the zeal of the philohe wils appointed minister of Gladsmuir, in Had- sopher to establish truth) to awaken the sympathies dingtonshire, whence he removed, in 1758, to be of the reader strongly in her behalf
. The luminous incumbent of Lady Yester's parish in Edinburgh. historical views and retrospects in which this histoHe had distinguished himself by his talents in the rian excels, were indicated in his introductory chap
ter on Scottish history, prior to the birth of Mary. Though a brief and rapid summary, this chapter is finely written, and is remarkable equally for elegance and perspicuity. The style of Robertson seems to have surprised his contemporaries; and Horace Walpole, in a letter to the author, expresses the feeling with his usual point and vivacity. 'Before I read your history, I should probably have been glad to dictate to you, and (I will venture to say it—it satirises nobody but myself) should have thought I did honour to an obscure Scotch clergyman by directing his studies by my superior lights and abilities. How you have saved me, sir, from making a ridiculous figure, by making so great a one yourself! But could I suspect that a man I believe much younger, and whose dialect I scarce understood, and who came to me with all the diffidence and modesty of a very middling author, and who I was told had passed his life in a small living near Edinburgh—could I then suspect that he had not only written what all the world now allows the best modern history, but that he had written it in the purest English, and with as much seeming knowledge of men and courts as if he had passed all his life in important embassies ?' This is delicate though somewhat overstrained flattery. Two of the quarto
volumes of Hume's history nad then been published, Dr William Robertson.
and his inimitable essays were also before the world,
showing that in mere style a Scotchman could carry General Assembly; but it was not till 1759 that he off the palm for ease and elegance. Robertson is became known as a historian. In that year he more uniform and measured than Hume. He has published his History of Scotland during the Reigns few salient points, and no careless beauties. His of Queen Mary and of King James VI., till "his style is a full and equable stream, that rolls every Accession to the Crown of England, by which his for- where the same, without lapsing into irregularity: tune was benefited to the extent of £600, and his or overflowing its prescribed course. It wants spirit fame was by one effort placed on an imperishable and variety. Of grandeur or dignity there is no basis
. No first work was ever more successful. The deficiency; and when the subject awakens a train author was congratulated by all who were illustrious of lofty or philosophical ideas, the manner of the for their rank or talents. He was appointed chaplain historian is in fine accordance with his matter. of Stirling castle ; in two years afterwards he was when he sums up the character of a sovereign, or nominated one of his majesty's chaplains in ordinary traces the progress of society
and the influence of for Scotland ; and he was successively made prin- laws and government, we recognise the mind and cipal of the university of Edinburgh, and historio- language of a master in historical composition. The grapher for Scotland, with a salary of £200 per artificial graces of his style are also finely displayed annum. Stimulated by such success, as well as by in scenes of tenderness and pathos, or in picturesque a love of composition, Dr Robertson continued his description. His account of the beauty and sufferstudies,
and in 1769 he produced his History of the ings of Mary, or of the voyage of Columbus, when Reign of Charles V.
, in three volumes, quarto, for the first glimpses of the new world broke upon the which he received from the booksellers the princely adventurers, possesses almost enough of imagination sum of £4500. It was equally well received with to rank
it with poetry. The whole of the History his former work. In 1777 he published his History of America' is indeed full of the strongest interest
. of America, and in 1791 his Historical Disquisition The discovery of so vast a portion of the globe, the on Ancient India, a slight work, to which he had luxuriance of its soil, the primitive manners of its been led by Major Rennel's Memoirs of a Map of natives, the pomp, magnificence, and cruelty of its Hindostan. For many years Dr Robertson was conquerors, all form a series of historical pictures leader of the moderate party in the church of Scot- and images that powerfully affect the mind. No land, in which capacity he is said to have evinced history of America can ever supplant the work of in the General Assembly a readiness and eloquence Robertson, for his materials are so well arranged, in debate which his friend Gibbon might have his information so varied, his
philosophical reflecenviel in the House of Commons. After a gradual tions so just and striking,
and his narrative 80 decay of his powers, this accomplished historian graceful, that nothing could be added but mere died on the 11th of June 1793, in the seventy-first details destitute of any interest. His History of year of his age.
the Reign of Charles V. wants this natural romance, The History of Scotland' possesses the interest but the knowledge displayed by the historian, and and something of the character of a memoir of Mary the enlarged and liberal spirit
of his philosophical Queen of Scots. This unfortunate princess forms inquiries, are scarcely less worthy of commendation, the attraction of the work; and though Robertson The first volume, which describes the state of is not among the number of her indiscriminate Europe previous to the sixteenth century, contains admirers and apologists, he labours (with more of the result of much study and research, expressed in
language often eloquent, and generally pleasing and almost uninterrupted succession of calamities which harmonious. If the 'pomp and strut' which Cowper befell her; we must likewise add that she was often the poet imputes to Robertson be sometimes ap- imprudent. Her passion for Darnley was rash, youthparent in the orderly succession of well-balanced ful, and excessive. And though the sudden transition and equally flowing periods, it must be acknow- to the opposite extreme was the natural effect of her ledged that there is also much real dignity and ill-requited love, and of his ingratitude, insolence, power, springing from the true elevation of intellec- and brutality, yet neither these nor Bothwell's artful tual and moral character.
address and important services can justify her attachA late acute critic, Mr Gifford, has thus discri- ment to that nobleman. Even the manners of the minated between the styles of Hume and Robertson : age, licentious as they were, are no apology for this 'Hume, the most contracted in his subject, is the unhappy passion ; nor can they induce us to look on most finished in execution; the nameless number that tragical and infamous scene which followed upon less graces of his styie; the apparent absence of it with less abhorrence. Humanity will draw a veil elaboration, yet the real effect produced by efforts over this part of her character which it cannot apthe most elaborate ; the simplicity of his sentences, prove, and may, perhaps, prompt some to impute her the perspicuity of his ideas, the purity of his ex- actions to her situation more than to her dispositions, pression, entitle him
to the name and to the praises and to lament the unhappiness of the former rather of another Xenophon. Robertson never attained to than accuse the perverseness of the latter. Mary's sufthe same graceful ease, or the same unbounded ferings exceed, both in degree and in duration, those variety of expression. With a fine ear and exact tragical distresses which fancy has feigned to excite judgment in the construction of his sentences, and sorrow and commiseration ; and while we survey them, with an absence of Scotticisms, truly wonderful in we are apt altogether to forget her frailties; we think one who had never ceased to converse with Scots- of her faults with less indignation, and approve of our men, there is in the sentences of this historian tears as if they were shed for a person who had atsomething resembling the pace of an animal disci- tained much nearer to pure virtue. plined by assiduous practice to the curb, and never
With regard to the queen's person, a circumstance moving but in conformity to the rules of the manège. not to be omitted in writing the history of a female The taste of Hume was Greek-Attic Greek : he reign, all contemporary authors agree in ascribing to
had, as far as the genius of the two languages would Mary the utmost beauty of countenance and elegance I permit, collected the very juice and flavour of their of shape of which the human form is capable. Her
style, and transfused it into his own. Robertson, hair was black, though, according to the fashion of we suspect, though a good, was never a profound different colours. Her eyes were a dark gray, her
age, she frequently wore borrowed locks, and of scholar : from the peculiar nature of his education, fession, he had little leisure to be learned. Both, in Her stature was of a height that rose to the majestic. and his early engagement in the duties of his pro- complexion was exquisitely fine, and her hands and
arms remarkably delicate, both as to shape and colour. their several ways, were men of the world; but she danced, she walked, and rode with equal grace. Hume, polished by long intercourse with the best society in France, as well as his own country, trans- Her taste for music was just, and she both sung and ferred some portion of easy high-breeding from his the end of her life she began to grow fat, and her
played upon the lute with uncommon skill. Towards manners to his writings; while his friend, though the bigotry of a Scots minister, or from the pedantry matism, which deprived her of the use of her limbs. 16 man was ever more completely emancipated from long confinement and the coldness of the houses in
which she had been imprisoned, brought on a rheuof the head of a college, in his intercourse (which No man,' says Brantome, 'ever beheld her person he assiduously courted) with the great, did not catch without admiration and love, or will read her history that last grace and polish which intercourse with
without sorrow.' out equality will never produce, and which, for that reason, mere sçavans rarely acquire from society
[Martin Luther.] more liberal or more dignified than what is found in their own rank.'
[From the History of Charles V.]
While appearances of danger daily increased, and [Character of Mary Queen of Scots.] the tempest which had been so long a gathering was
ready to break forth in all its violence against the To all the charms of beauty and the utmost ele- Protestant church, Luther was saved, by a seasonable gance of external form, she added those accomplish- death, from feeling or beholding its destructive rage.
ments which render their impression irresistible. Having gone, though in a declining state of health, ! Polite, affable, insinuating, sprightly, and capable of and during a rigorous season, to his native city of speaking and of writing with equal ease and dignity. Eysleben, in order to compose, by his authority, a Sudden, however, and violent in all her attachments, dissension among the counts of Mansfield, he was because her heart was warm and unsuspicious. Im- seized with a violent inflammation in his stomach,
patient of contradiction, because she had been accus- which in a few days put an end to his life, in the | tored from her infancy to be treated as a queen. No sixty-third year of his age. As he was raised up by
stranger, on some occasions, to dissimulation, which, providence to be the author of one of the greatest and in that perfidious court where she received her edu- most interesting revolutions recorded in history, there cation, was reckoned among the necessary arts of is not any person, perhaps, whose character has been government. Not insensible of flattery, or uncon- drawn with such opposite colours. In his own age, scious of that pleasure with which almost every woman one party, struck with horror and infiamed with rage, beholds the influence of her own beauty. Formed when they saw with what a daring hand he overwith the qualities which we love, not with the talents turned everything which they held to be sacred, or that we admire, she was an agreeable woman rather valued as beneficial, imputed to him not only all than an illustrious queen. The vivacity of her spirit
, the defects and vices of a man, but the qualities of a not sufficiently tempered with sound judgment, and demon. The other, warmed with the admiration and the warmth of her heart, which was not at all times gratitude which they thought he merited as the reunder the restraint of discretion, betrayed her both storer of light and liberty to the Christian church, into errors and into crimes. To say that she was ascribed to him perfections above the condition of always unfortunate will not account for that long and humanity, and viewed all his actions with a venera