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of impiety, as habitually besotted with wine, and as deluded with women. It is impossible to give any credit to the vileness of calumny; and it were equally vain to yield without reserve to the heated admiration of panegyrists. Sir James Melvil, whose political sentiments were different from his, has done him the justice to declare, that he died a sincere member of the reformed church. In passing from the errors of popery, he discovered not, indeed, the flaming zeal of a convert; and his moderation was the effect of his wisdom. A superstitious grimace was no part of his character; and to a person of his uncommon endowments it would be an error to impute the most scrupulous adherence to every tenet in any popular faith. His life was liberal, like his opinions. From the uncertain condition of his fortune, or from his attachment to study, he kept himself free from the restraint of marriage; but if a judgment may be formed from the vivacity of his temper and the wantonness of his verses, he was no enemy to beauty and to love, and must have known the tumults and the languor of voluptuousness. Violent in his nature, he embraced his friend with ardour, and indulged in the play of social affections. Proud of mental superiority, he was prone to treat with contempt men of high rank, whose chief recommendation was their birth or their riches. Against his enemies he was animated with an atrocity of revenge; a malignant keenness glanced in his eye; and the persecutions of priests and the oppressions of misfortune served to augment the natural fretfulness of his disposition, and gave an edge to his spleen. His conversation was gay, ingenious, and satirical.
When he was possessed of wealth there were no bounds to his prodigality; when in want, he submitted to little arts to procure the means of expense ; and being careless of the future, he made no provision for the season of dotage and helplessness. His money and his life terminated in the same moment. He was rather low in stature; of his dress he was negligent; and his external appearance bore no marks of the cultivation of his taste. Yet in the slavish occupations of a pedagogue, in which he passed the better part of his days, he had contracted no pedantic impertinence. No meanness of situation could destroy the greatness of his mind. He passed with propriety from the school to the cabinet, and felt himself alike a scholar and a courtier. In poetry he was deemed unrivalled by his contemporaries. He is more nervous, more various, more elegant than the Italian poets. He has imitated those of Rome with greater grace and purity. His Psalms, in which he has employed so many kinds of verse, display admirably the extent and universality of his mind, the quickness and abundance of his fancy, and the power and acutenesss of his judgment. In history he has contended with Livy and Sallust. The chequered scenes of his life had given him a wide experience of the world, and he was naturally of a thoughtful disposition. He treats accordingly the transactions of men with great prudence and discernment. In the precision and exactness of his narration he is not equally successful. Minute facts too often escape his attention ; and important ones do not always receive from him that niceness of examination, and that fulness of detail, which they merit. Of ornament he is more studious than of truth; and the fables which disgrace the earlier portions of his history are not more disgusting than the partiality with which he records the events of his own times. A love of liberty, and a respect for the best interests of mankind, pervade and illustrate his work; but his admiration of tyrannicide, and his contempt of royalty, betray a propensity to licentiousness and faction. His learning is admirable; his penetration better than his learning. The vigour of his mind, the interest of his manner, the dignity of his narration, the deepness of his remark, the purity of his diction, are all conspicuous. But while his genius and ability adorned the times in which he lived, and must draw to him the admiration of the most distant posterity, it is not to be forgotten that his political conduct was disgraceful in the greatest degree, and must excite its regrets and provoke its indignation. His zeal for the Earl of Murray overturned altogether his allegiance as a subject, and his integrity as a man. His activity against Mary in the conferences in England was in a strain of the most shameless corruption; and the virulence with which he endeavoured to defame her by his writings, was most audacious and criminal. They involve the complicated charge of ingratitude, rebellion, and perjury. That he repented of his political transactions, and of his malignity to Mary, has indeed been affirmed with great probability; but no decisive vouchers of his sorrow have been recorded; and in the short Memoir he left of himself, he has avoided all
mention of it. A dark cloud was gathering around him, when an opportune death afforded him a peaceful retreat from the anxieties and the cares of a world, with which his infirmities and his age had disgusted him.
MR. W. CHILLINGWORTH.
While Charles the First governed England, and was himself governed by a Catholic queen, it cannot be denied that the missionaries of Rome laboured with impunity and success in the court, the country, and even the universities. One of the sheep,
—Whom the grim wolf, with privy paw,
is Mr. William Chillingworth, Master of Arts, and Fellow of Trinity College, Oxford; who, at the ripe age of twenty-eight years, was persuaded to elope from Oxford, to the English seminary at Douay, in Flanders. Some disputes with Fisher, a subtle jesuit, might first awaken him from the prejudices of education; but he yielded to his own victorious argument, " that there must be somewhere an infallible judge; and that the church of Rome is the only Christian society which either does or can pretend to that character." After a short trial of a few months, Mr. Chillingworth was again tormented by religious scruples: he returned home, resumed his studies, unravelled his mistakes, and delivered his mind from the yoke of authority and superstition. His new creed was built on the principle, that the Bible is our sole judge, and private reason our sole interpreter: and he ably maintains this principle in the Religion of a Protestant, a book which, after startling the doctors of Oxford, is still esteemed the most solid defence of the Reformation. The learning, the virtue, the recent merits of the author, entitled him to fair preferment: but the slave had now broken his fetters; and the more he weighed, the less was he disposed to subscribe to the thirty-nine articles of the church of England. In a private letter he declares, with all the energy of language, that he could not subscribe to them without subscribing his own damnation; and that if ever he should depart from this immoveable resolution, he would allow his friends to think him a madman or an atheist. As the letter is without a date, we cannot ascertain the number of weeks or months that elapsed between this passionate abhorrence and the Salisbury Register, which is still extant."Ego Gulielmus Chillingworth, omnibus
hisce articulis, et singulis in iisdem contends, volens et ex animo subscribo, et consensum meum iisdem praebeo. 20 die Julii, 1638." But, alas! the chancellor and prebendary of Sarum soon deviated from his own subscription: as he more deeply scrutinized the article of the Trinity, neither Scripture nor the primitive fathers could long uphold his orthodox belief; and he could not but confess, " that the doctrine of Arius is either a truth, or at least no damnable heresy." From this middle region of the air, the descent of