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and, pulling off a piece of hat, asked charity of are apt to imagine. With a tolerable good memory Harley; the dog began to beg too. It was impos- and some share of cunning, with the help of walking sible to resist both; and, in truth, the want of shoes a-nights over heaths and churchyards, with this, and and stockings had made both unnecessary, for Har- showing the tricks of that there dog, whom I stole ley had destined sixpence for him before. The from the sergeant of a marching regiment (and, by the beggar, on receiving it, poured forth blessings with way, he can steal too upon occasion), I make shift to out number; and, with a sort of smile on his coun- pick up a livelihood. My trade, indeed, is none of the tenance, said to Harley, 'that if he wanted his for- honestest; yet people are not much cheated neither, tune told - Harley turned his eye briskly on the who give a few halfpence for a prospect of happibeggar: it was an unpromising look for the subject ness, which I have heard some persons say is all a man of a prediction, and silenced the prophet imme- can arrive at in this world. But I must bid you good diately. I would much rather learn, said Harley, day, sir; for I have three miles to walk before noon, 'Fhat it is in your power to tell me: your trade must to inform some boarding-school young ladies whether be an entertaining one: sit down on this stone, and their husbands are to be peers of the realm or caplet me know something of your profession; I have tains in the army; a question which I promised to often thought of turning fortune-teller for a week or answer them by that time.' (wo myself.'

Harley had drawn a shilling from his pocket; but Master,' replied the beggar, ‘I like your frankness Virtue bade him consider on whom he was going to much; God knows I had the humour of plain dealing bestow it. Virtue held back his arm; but a milder in me from a child; but there is no doing with it in form, a younger sister of Virtue's, not so severe as this world; we must live as we can, and lying is, as Virtue, nor so serious as Pity, smiled upon him; his you call it, my profession : but I was in some sort fingers lost their compression; nor did Virtue offer to forced to the trade, for I dealt once in telling truth. catch the money as it fell. It had no sooner reached I was a labourer, sir, and gained as much as to the ground, than the watchful cur (a trick he had make me live: I never laid by indeed ; for I was been taught) snapped it up; and, contrary to the reckoned a piece of a wag, and your ways, I take it, most approved method of stewardship, delivered it are seldom rich, Mr Harley.? So,' said Harley, “ you immediately into the hands of his master. seem to know me.' 'Ay, there are few folks in the country that I don't know something of; how should I tell fortunes else? “True; but to go on with your

[The Death of Ilarley. ] story: you were a labourer, you say, and a wag; your Harley was one of those few friends whom the maindustry, I suppose, you left with your old trade; but levolence of fortune had yet left me; I could not, your humour you preserve to be of use to you in your therefore, but be sensibly concerned for his present new.'

indisposition; there seldom passed a day on which I "What signifies sadness, sir? a man grows lean did not make inquiry about him. on't: but I was brought to my idleness by degrees ; The physician who attended him had informed me first I could not work, and it went against my stomach the evening before, that he thought him considerably to work ever after. I was seized with a jail fever at better than he had been for some time past. I called the time of the assizes being in the county where I next morning to be confirmed in a piece of intellilived; for I was always curious to get acquainted with gence so welcome to me. the felons, because they are commonly fellows of much When I entered his apartment, I found him sitting mirth and little thought, qualities I had ever an on a couch, leaning on his hand, with his eye turned esteem for. In the height of this fever, Mr Harley, upwards in the attitude of thoughtful inspiration. the house where I lay took fire, and burnt to the His look had always an open benignity, which comground; I was carried out in that condition, and lay manded esteem; there was now something more-a all the rest of my illness in a barn. I got the better gentle triumph in it. of my disease, however, but I was so weak that I spit He rose, and met me with his usual kindness. blood whenever I attempted to work. I had no rela- When I gave him the good accounts I had had from tion living that I knew of, and I never kept a friend his physician, 'I am foolish enough,' said he, 'to rely above a week when I was able to joke; I seldom re- but little in this instance to physic. My presentiment mained above six months in a parish, so that I might may be false ; but I think I feel myself approaching to have died before I had found a settlement in any: my end by steps so easy that they woo me to approach thus I was forced to beg my bread, and a sorry trade it. There is a certain dignity in retiring from life at I found it, Mr Harley. I told all my misfortunes a time when the infirmities of age have not sapped truly, but they were seldom believed ; and the few our faculties. This world, my dear Charles, was a who gave me a halfpenny as they passed, did it with scene in which I never much delighted. I was not a sbake of the head, and an injunction not to trouble formed for the bustle of the busy nor the dissipation them with a long story. In short, I found that people of the gay; a thousand things occurred where I do not care to give alms without some security for blushed for the impropriety of my conduct when I their money; a wooden leg or a withered arm is a sort thought on the world, though my reason told me I of draught upon heaven for those who choose to have should have blushed to have done otherwise. It was their money placed to account there; so I changed a scene of dissimulation, of restraint, of disappointmy plan, and, instead of telling my own misfortunes, ment. I leave it to enter on that state which I have began to prophesy happiness to others. This I found learned to believe is replete with the genuine happiby much the better way: folks will always listen when ness attendant upon virtue. I look back on the tenor the tale is their own; and of many who say they do of my life with the consciousness of few great offences not believe in fortune-telling, I have known few on to account for. There are blemishes, I confess, which whom it had not a very sensible effect. I pick up the deform in some degree the picture; but I know the names of their acquaintance; amours and little benignity of the Supreme Being, and rejoice at the squabbles are easily gleaned among servants and thoughts of its exertion in my favour.' My mind neighbours; and indeed people themselves are the expands at the thought I shall enter into the society best intelligencers in the world for our purpose; they of the blessed, wise as angels, with the simplicity of dare not puzzle us for their own sakes, for every one children.' is anxious to hear what they wish to believe; and Ile had by this time 'clasped my hand, and found they who repeat it, to laugh at it when they have it wet by a tear which had just fallen upon it. His done, are generally more serious than their hearers eye began to moisten too-we sat for some time silent.

At last, with an attempt at a look of more composure, sighed, and fell back on his seat. Miss Walton • There are some remembrances,' said Harley, which screamed at the sight. His aunt and the servants rise involuntarily on my heart, and make me almost rushed into the room. They found them lying mowish to live. I have been blessed with a few friends tionless together. His physician happened to call at who redeem my opinion of mankind. I recollect with that instant. Every art was tried to recover them. the tenderest 'emotion the scenes of pleasure I have With Miss Walton they succeeded, but Harley was passed among them; but we shall meet again, my gone for ever! friend, never to be separated. There are some feel I entered the room where his body lay; I approached ings which perhaps are too tender to be suffered by it with reverence, not fear. I looked ; the recollecthe world. The world is in general selfish, interested, tion of the past crowded upon me. I saw that form and unthinking, and throws the imputation of ro- which, but a little before, was animated with a soul mance or melancholy on every temper more suscep- which did honour to humanity, stretched without tible than its own. I cannot think but in those sense or feeling before me. 'Tis a connexion we can. regions which I contemplate, if there is anything of not easily forget. I took his hand in mine; I repeated mortality left about us, that these feelings will sub- his name involuntarily; I felt a pulse in every rein sist; they are called-perhaps they are weaknesses at the sound. I looked earnestly in his face ; his eye here; but there may be some better modifications of was closed, his lip pale and motionless. There is an them in heaven, which may deserve the name of vir- enthusiasm in sorrow that forgets impossibility; I tues.' He sighed as he spoke these last words. He wondered that it was so. The sight drew a prayer had scarcely finished them when the door opened, and from my heart; it was the voice of frailty and of his aunt appeared leading in Miss Walton. "My man! The confusion of my mind began to subside dear,' says she, here is Miss Walton, who has been so into thought; I had time to weep! kind as to come and inquire for you herself.' I could I turned with the last farewell upon my lips, when observe a transient glow upon his face. He rose from I observed old Edwards standing behind me. I looked his seat. If to know Miss Walton's goodness,' him full in the face, but his eye was fixed on another said he, “be a title to deserve it, I have some claim.' object. He pressed between me and the bed, and She begged him to resume his seat, and placed her- stood gazing on the breathless remains of his beneself on the sofa beside him. I took my leave. Mrs factor. I spoke to him I know not what; but he Margery accompanied me to the door. He was left took no notice of what I said, and remained in the with Miss Walton alone. She inquired anxiously same attitude as before. He stood some minutes in about his health. 'I believe,' said he, 'from the that posture, then turned and walked towaris the accounts which my physicians unwillingly give me, door. He paused as he went; he returned a second that they have no great hopes of my recovery. She time; I could observe his lips move as he looked; started as he spoke; but recollecting herself im- but the voice they would have uttered was lost. He mediately, endeavoured to flatter him into a belief attempted going again; and a third time he returned that his apprehensions were groundless. I know,' as before. I saw him wipe his cheek; then, covering said he, that it is usual with persons at my time of his face with his hands, his breast heaving with the life to have these hopes which your kindness sug- most convulsive throbs, he flung out of the room. gests, but I would not wish to be deceived. To meet He had hinted that he should like to be buried in death as becomes a man is a privilege bestowed on a certain spot near the grave of his mother. This is few. I would endeavour to make it mine; nor do I a weakness, but it is universally incident to humathink that I can ever be better prepared for it than nity; it is at least a memorial for those who survive. now; it is that chiefly which determines the fitness For some, indeed, a slender memorial will serve; and of its approach. Those sentiments,' answered Miss the soft affections, when they are busy that way, will Walton, are just ; but your good sense, Mr Harley, build their structures were it but on the paring of will own that life has its proper value. As the pro- a nail. vince of virtue, life is ennobled ; as such, it is to He was buried in the place he had desired. It was be desired. To virtue has the Supreme Director of all shaded by an old tree, the only one in the churchyard, things assigned rewards enough even here to fix its in which was a cavity worn by time. I have sat with attachment.'

him in it, and counted the tombs. The last time we The subject began to overpower her. Harley lifted passed there, methought he looked wistfully on the his eyes from the ground, “There are,' said he, in a tree; there was a branch of it that bent towards us, very low voice, there are attachments, Miss Wal- waving in the wind; he waved his hand, as if he ton. His glance met hers. They both betrayed a mimicked its motion. There was something predieconfusion, and were both instantly withdrawn. He tive in his look! perhaps it is foolish to remark it, paused some moments : 'I am in such a state as calls but there are times and places when I am a child at for sincerity, let that also excuse itmit is perhaps those things. the last time we shall ever meet. I feel something I sometimes visit his grave; I sit in the hollow of particularly solemn in the acknowledgment, yet my the tree. It is worth a thousand homilies ; every heart swells to make it, awed as it is by a sense of my noble feeling rises within me! Every beat of my presumption, by a sense of your perfections.' He heart awakens a virtue; but it will make you bate paused again. “Let it not offend you to know their the world. No; there is such an air of gentleness power over one so unworthy. It will, I believe, soon around that I can hute nothing; but as to the world, cease to beat, even with that feeling which it shall lose I pity the men of it. the latest. To love Miss Walton could not be a crime; if to declare it is one, the expiation will be made.' The last of our novel writers of this period was Her tears were now flowing without control. • Let Miss CLARA REEVE, the daughter of a clergyman at me entreat you,' said she,' to have better hopes. Let Ipswich, where she died in 1803, aged seventynot life be so indifferent to you, if my wishes can eight. An early admiration of Horace Walpole's put any value on it. I will not pretend to misun- romance, The Castle of Otranto, induced Miss derstand you-I know your worth—I have known Reeve to imitate it in a Gothic story, entitled The it long - I have esteemed it. What would you Old English Baron, which was published in 1777. have ine say? I have loved it as it deserved.' He In some respects the lady has the advantage of seized her hand, a languid colour reddened his Walpole; her supernatural machinery is better macheek, a smile brightened faintly in his eye. As he naged, so as to produce mysteriousness and effect ; gazed on her it grew dim, it fixed, it closed. He but her style has not the point or elegance of that

of her prototype. Miss Reeve wrote several other of Cicero, in two volumes. Reviewing the whole of novels, all marked,' says Sir Walter Scott, by ex- the celebrated orator's public career, and the princicellent good sense, pure morality, and a competent pal transactions of his times—mixing up questions command of those qualities which constitute a good of philosophy, government, and politics, with the romance.' They have failed, however, to keep pos- details of biography, Middleton compiled a highly session of public favour, and the fame of the author interesting work, full of varied and important inforrests on her Old English Baron,' which is now mation, and written with great care and taste. An generally printed along with the story of Walpole. admiration of the rounded style and flowing periods

of Cicero seems to have produced in his biographer HISTORIANS.

a desire to attain to similar excellence; and perhaps A spirit of philosophical inquiry and reflection, English with the same careful finish and sustained

no author, prior to Johnson's great works, wrote united to the graces of literary composition, can dignity. The graces of Addison were wanting, but hardly be said to have been presented by any Eng- certainly no historical writings of the day were at lish historian before the appearance of that illus- all comparable to Middleton's memoir. One or two trious triumvirate-Hume, Robertson, and Gibbon. sentences from his summary of Cicero's character The early annalists of Britain recorded mere fables will exemplify the author's style :and superstitions, with a slight admixture of truth. The classic pen of Buchanan was guided by party He (Cicero) made a just distinction between bearrancour, undignified by research. Even Milton, ing what we cannot help, and approving what we ought when he set himself to compose a history of his to condemn; and submitted, therefore, yet never connative country, included the fables of Geoffrey of sented to those usurpations; and when he was forced Monmouth. The history of the Long Parliament to comply with them, did it always with a reluctance by May is a valuable fragment, and the works of that he expresses very keenly in his letters to his Clarendon and Burnet are interesting though pre- friends. But whenever that force was removed, and judiced pictures of the times. A taste for our na. he was at liberty to pursue his principles and act tional annals soon began to call for more extensive without control, as in his consulship, in his province, compilations; and in 1706 a “Complete History of and after Cæsar's death-the only periods of his life England was published, containing a collection of in which he was truly master of himself-there we see various works previous to the time of Charles I., him shining out in his genuine character of an exceland a continuation by White Kennet, bishop of lent citizen, a great magistrate, a glorious patriot; Peterborough. M. Rapin, a French Protestant there we could see the man who could declare of him(1661-1725), who had come over to England with self with truth, in an appeal to Atticus, as to the best the Prince of Orange, and resided here several witness of his conscience, that he had always done the years, seems to have been interested in our affairs ; greatest services to his country when it was in his for, on retiring to the Hague, he there composed a power; or when it was not, had never harboured a voluminous history of England, in French, which thought of it but what was divine. If we must needs was speedily translated, and enjoyed great popu- compare him, therefore, with Cato, as some writers larity. The work of Rapin is still considered valu- affect to do, it is certain that if Cato's virtue seem able, and it possesses a property which no English more splendid in theory, Cicero's will be found supeauthor has yet been able to confer on a similar nar- rior in practice ; the one was romantic, the other was ration, that of impartiality; but it wants literary natural; the one drawn from the refinements of the attractions. A more laborious, exact, and original schools, the other from nature and social life; the one historian, appeared in THOMAS CARTE (1686-1754), always unsuccessful, often hurtful; the other always who meditated a complete domestic or civil history beneficial, often salutary to the republic. of England, for which he had made large collections,

To conclude: Cicero's death, though violent, cannot encouraged by public subscriptions. His work was be called untimely, but was the proper end of such a projected in 1743, and four years afterwards the life; which must also have been rendered less glorious first volume appeared. Unfortunately Carte made if it had owed its preservation to Antony. It was, allusion to a case, which he said had come under his therefore, not only what he expected, but, in the cirown observation, of a person who had been cured of cumstances to which he was reduced, what he seems the king's evil by the Pretender, then in exile in even to have wished. For he, who before had been timid France; and this Jacobite sally proved the ruin of in dangers, and desponding in distress, yet, from the his work. Subscribers withdrew their names, and time of Cæsar's death, roused by the desperate state the historian was left forlorn and abandoned amid of the republic, assumed the fortitude of a hero; dishis extensive collections. A second and third carded all fear; despised all danger; and when he volume, however, were published by the indefati- could not free his country from a tyranny, provoked gable collector, and a fourth, which he left incom- the tyrants to take that life which he no longer cared plete, was published after his death. Carte was

to preserve. Thus, like a great actor on the stage, he author also of a Life of the Duke of Ormond, remark- reserved himself, as it were, for the last act ; and after able for the fulness of its information, but disfigured he had played his part with dignity, resolved to finish

it with glory. by his Jacobite predilections.

The Roman History by HOOKE also belongs to this Or the character of Julius Cæsarperiod. It commences with the building of Rome, and is continued to the downfall of the common Cæsar was endowed with every great and noble wealth. Hooke was patronised by Pope (to whom quality that could exalt human nature, and give a he dedicated his first volume), and he produced a

man the ascendant in society : formed to excel in useful work, which still maintains its place. The peace, as well as in war; provident in counsel ; fearfirst volume of this history was published in 1733, less in action; and executing what he had resolved but it was not completed till 1771.

with amazing celerity; generous beyond measure to his friends; placable to his enemies; and for parts, learning, eloquence, scarce inferior to any man. His

orations were admired for two qualities which are In 1741 DR CONYERS MIDDLETON (1683-1750), seldom found together-strength and elegance. Cicero an English clergyman, and librarian of the public ranks him among the greatest orators that Rome ever library at Cambridge, produced his historical Life bred ; and Quintilian says, that he spoke with the

181

DR CONYERS MIDDLETON.

same force with which he fought; and if he had de knowledges "fell dead-born from the press.' A
voted himself to the bar, would have been the only third part appeared in 1740; and in 1742 he pro-
man capable of rivalling Cicero. Nor was he a master duced two volumes, entitled Essays Moral and Phi-
only of the politer arts; but conversant also with the losophical. Some of these miscellaneous productions
most abstruse and critical parts of learning; and, are remarkable for research and discrimination, and
among other works which he published, addressed for elegance of style. In 1745 he undertook the
two books to Cicero on the analogy of language, or charge of the Marquis of Annandale, a young noble-
the art of speaking and writing correctly. He was a man of deranged intellects; and in this humiliating
most liberal patron of wit and learning wheresoever employment the philosopher continued about å
they were found ; and out of his love of those talents, twelvemonth. He next made an unsuccessful at.
would readily pardon those who had employed them tempt to be appointed professor of moral philosophy
against himself; rightly judging that by making in his native university, after which he fortunately
such men his friends, he should draw praises from the obtained the situation of secretary to Lieutenant-
same fountain from which he had been aspersed. His General St Clair, who was first appointed to the
capital passions were ambition and love of pleasure, command of an expedition against Canada, and after-
which he indulged in their turns to the greatest ex-wards ambassador to the courts of Vienna and
cess; yet the first was always predominant, to which Turin. In the latter, Hume enjoyed congenial and
he could easily sacrifice all the charms of the second, refined society. Having remodelled his . Treatise on
and draw pleasure even from toils and dangers when
they ministered to his glory. For he thought Tyranny,
as Cicero says, the greatest of goddesses; and had fre-
quently in his mouth a verse of Euripides, which
expressed the image of his soul, that, if right and
justice were ever to be violated, they were to be vio-
lated for the sake of reigning. This was the chief end
and purpose of his life; the scheme that he had formed
from his early youth ; so that, as Cato truly declared
of him, he came with sobriety and meditation to the
subversion of the republic. He used to say that there
were two things necessary to acquire and to support
power - soldiers and money; which yet depended
mutually upon each other. With money, therefore,
he provided soldiers, and with soldiers extorted
money; and was of all men the most rapacious in
plundering both friends and foes, sparing neither
prince, nor state, nor temple, nor even private per-
sons who were known to possess any share of treasure.
His great abilities would necessarily have made him
one of the first citizens of Rome; but disdaining the
condition of a subject, he could never rest till he
made himself a monarch. In acting this last part,
his usual prudence seemed to fail him, as if the height
to which he was mounted had turned his head and
made him giddy; for, by a vain ostentation of his
power, he destroyed the stability of it; and as men
shorten life by living too fast, so, by an intempe-
rance of reigning, he brought his reign to a violent
end.

David lume.
Human Nature,' he republished it in 1751 under the

title of an Inquiry Concerning the Principles of Morals. Relying on the valuable collections of Carte; ani- Next year he issued two volumes of Political Dis. mated by a strong love of literary fame, which he courses, and, with a view to the promotion of his avowed to be his ruling passion ; desirous also of studies, assumed gratuitously the office of librarian combating the popular prejudices in favour of Eliza- to the Faculty of Advocates. He now struck into the beth and against the Stuarts; and master of a style path of historical writing. In 1754 appeared the singularly fascinating, simple, and graceful, the cele- first volume of his History of Great Britain, containbrated DAVID HUME left his philosophical studies ing the reigns of James I. and Charles I. It was to embark in historical composition. This eminent assailed by the Whigs with unusual bitterness, and person was a native of Scotland, born of a good Hume was so disappointed, partly from the attacks family, being the second son of Joseph Home (the on him, and partly because of the slow sale of the historian first spelt the name Hume), laird of Nine- work, that he intended retiring to France, changing wells, near Dunse, in Berwickshire. David was his name, and never more returning to his native born in Edinburgh on the 26th of April 1711. After country. The breaking out of the war with France attending the university of Edinburgh, his friends prevented this step, but we suspect the complacency were anxious that he should commence the study of of Hume and his love of Scotland would otherwise the law, but a love of literature rendered him averse have frustrated his intention. A second volume of to this profession. An attempt was then made to the history was published, with more success, in establish him in business, and he was placed in a 1757 ; a third and fourth in 1759 ; and the two last mercantile house in Bristol. This employment was in 1762. The work became highly popular; edition found equally uncongenial, and Hume removed to followed edition ; and by universal consent Hume France, where he passed some years in literary re- was placed at the head of English historians. In tirement, living with the utmost frugality and care 1763 our author accompanied the Earl of Hertford on the small allowance made him by his family. He on his embassy to Paris, where he was received with returned in 1737 to publish his first philosophical marked distinction. In 1766 he returned to Scotwork, the Treatise on Human Nature, which he ac- land, but was induced next year to accept the situa

[graphic]

DAVID HUME.

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 state 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. whether the claims of the ecclesiastics were founded

pretensions, to see with their own eyes, and to examine In his personal character he was liberal and inde

on that charter which was on all hands acknowledged pendent: he had early in life,' says Sir James Mackintosh, 'conceived an antipathy to the Cal research and curiosity was happily revived, and men

to be derived from heaven ; and that, as a spirit of vinistic divines, and his temperament led him at 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 bad 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

on the other hand, that the pretence of making the it then became the pride of his ingenuity to justify.' people see with their own eyes was a mere cheat, and 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 his 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 mockery 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 had 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; 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, I education, erudition, and an assiduous study of the

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