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democratic than a Whig. Yet this was the improvement had taken place. We are so language which Johnson, the most bigoted of admirers of the political doctrines laid down Tories and High Churchmen, held under the in Blackstone's Commentaries. But if we conadministration of Walpole and Pelham. sider that those Commentaries were read with
Thus doctrines favourable to public liberty great applause in the very schools where, were inculcated alike by those who were in within the memory of some persons then sving power, and by those who were in opposition. books had been publicly burned by order of the It was by means of these doctrines alone University of Oxford, for containing the “darn that the former could prove that they had a able doctrine," that the English monarchy is king de jure. The servile theories of the latter limited and mixed, we cannot deny that a saludid not prevent them from offering every mo- tary change had taken place. “The Jesuits," lestation to one whom they considered as says Pascal, in the last of his incomparable merely a king de facto. The attachment of the letters, “ have obtained a Papal decree conone party to the house of Hanover, of the other demning Galileo's doctrine about the motion to that of Stuart, induced both to talk a lan- of the earth. It is all in vain. li the world is guage inuch more favourable to popular rights really turning round, all mankind together will than tc monarchical power. What took place not be able to keep it from turning, or to keep at the first representation of " Cato" is no bad themselves from turning with it." The decrees illustration of the way in which the two great of Oxford were as ineffectual to stay the great sections of the community almost invariably moral and political revolution, as those of the acted. A play, the whole merit of which con- Vatican to stay the motion of our globe. That sists in its stately rhetoric,-a rhetoric some- learned University found itself not only unable times not unworthy of Lucan,--about hating to keep the mass from moving, but unable to tyrants and dying for freedom, is brought on keep itself from moving along with the mass. the stage in a time of great political excite- Nor was the effect of the discussions and speineni. Both parties crowd to the theatre. culations of that period confined to our own Each affects to consider every line as a com- country. While the Jacobite party was in the pliment to itself, and an attack on its oppo- last dotage and weakness of its paralytic old nents. The curtain falls amidst an unanimous age, the political philosophy of England began roar of applause. The Whigs of the “ Kit Car" to produce a mighty effect on France, and, embrace the author, and assure him that he through France, on Europe. has rendered an inestimable service to liberty. Here another vast field opens itself before us, The Tory Secretary of State presents a purse But we must resolutely turn away from it. We to the chief actor for defending the cause of will conclude by earnestly advising all our reade liberty so well. The history of that night was, ers to study Sir James Mackintosh's invaluable in miniature, the history of two generations. Fragment; and by expressing the satisfaction
We well know how much sophistry there we have received from learning, since this was in the reasonings, and how much exaggc- article was written, that the intelligent publish. ration in the declamations of both parties. Buters of the volume before us have resolved to when we compare the state in which political reprint the Fragment in a separate form, with science was at the close of the reign of George out those accompaniments which have hitherto the Second, with the state in which it had been impeded its circulation. The resolution is as wher James the second came to the throne, it creditable to them as the publication is sure te is inpossible not to admit that a prodigious | be acceptable to the lovers of English history.
SIR JOHN MALCOLM'S LIFE OF LORD CLIVE.*
[EDINBURGH REVIEW FOR JANUARY, 1840.)
We have always thought it strange that, guage, has never been very popular, and is while the history of the Spanish empire in now scarcely ever read. America is so familiarly known to all the na We fear that Sir John Malcolm's volumes tions of Europe, the great actions of our own will not much attract those readers whom countrymen in the East should, even among Orme and Mill have repéiku The materials ourselves, excite little interest. Every school- placed at his disposal by the late Lord Powis boy knows who imprisoned Montezuma, and were indeed of great value. But we cannot who strangled Atabalipa. But we doubt whe- say that they have been very skilfully worked ther one in ten, even among English gentlemen up. It would, however, be unjust to criticise of highly cultivated minds, can tell who won with severity a work which, if the author had the battle of Buxar, who perpetrated the mas- lived to complete and revise it, would proba. sacre of Patna, whether Surajah Dowlah ruled bly have been improved by condensation and in Oude or in Travancore, or whether Holkar by a better arrangement. We are more dis. was a Hindoo or a Mussulman. Yet the vic- posed to perform the pleasing duty of expresstories of Cortes were gained over savages who ing our gratitude to the noble family to which had no letters, who were ignorant of the use the public owes so much useful and curious of metals, who had not broken in a single ani- information. mal to labour, who wielded no better weapons The effect of the book, even when we make than those which could be made out of sticks, the largest allowance for the partiality of those flints, and fish-bones, who regarded a horse who have furnished and of those who have disoldier as a monster, half man and half beast, gested the materials, is, on the whole, greatly who took a harquebusier for a sorcerer able to to raise the character of Lord Clive. We are scatter the thunder and lightning of the skies. far indeed from sympathizing with Sir John The people of India when we subdued them Malcolm, whose love passes the love of biowere ten times as numerous as the vanquished graphers, and who can see nothing but wisdom Americans, and were at the same time quite as and justice in the actions of his idol. But we highly civilized as the victorious Spaniards. are at least equally far from concurring in the They had reared cities larger and fairer than severe judgment of Mr. Mill, who seems to us Saragossa or Toledo, and buildings more beau- to show less discrimination in his account of tiful and costly than the cathedral of Seville. Clive than in any other part of his valuable They could show bankers richer than the rich- work. Clive, like most men who are born with est firms of Barcelona or Cadiz; viceroys strong passions, and tried by strong templa whose splendour far surpassed that of Ferdi- tions, committed great faults. But every pere nand the Catholic; myriads of cavalry and son who takes a fair and enlightened view of long trains of artillery which would have asto- his whole career must admit that our island, nished the Great Captain. It might have been so fertile in heroes and statesmen, has scarcely expected that every Englishman who takes ever produced a man more truly great either in any interest in any part of history would be arms or in council. curious to know how a handful of his country The Clives had been settled ever since the men, separated from their home by an immense twelfth century on an estate of no great value ocean, subjugated, in the course of a few near Market-Drayton, in Shropshire. In the years, one of the greatest empires in the world. reign of George the First this moderate but Yet, unless we greatly err, this subject is to ancient inheritance was possessed by Mr. most readers not only insipid, but positively Richard Clive, who seems to have been a distasteful.
plain man of no great tact or capacity. He l'erhaps the fault lies partly with the histo- had been bred to the law, and divided his time rians. Mr. Mill's book, though it has undoubt between professional business and the avocaedly great and rare merit, is not sufficiently tions of a small proprietor. He married a lady animated and picturesque to attract those who from Manchester of the name of Gaskill and read for amusement. Orme, inferior to no became the father of a very numerous famiiy. English historian in style and power of paint. His eldest son, Robert, the founder of the Briing, is minute even to tediousness. In one tish empire in India, was born at the old seat volurne he allots, on an average, a closely of his ancestors on the 29th of September, printed quarto page to the events of every 1725. forty-eight hours. The consequence is that his Some lineaments of the character of the man narrative, though one of the most authentic were early discerned in the child. There re and one of the most finely written in our lan- main letters written by his relations when he
was in his seventh year; and from these it ap• The Life of Robert Lord Clive; collected from the pears that, even at that early age, his strong Family Papers, communicated by the Earl of Pouis: By will and his fiery passions, sustained by a con Major-General Sir John MALCOLM, K.C. B. 3 vols. 8vo. London. 1836.
stitutional intrepidity which sometimes seeniort
hardly compatible with soundness of mind, haded by its garden, whither the wealthy agents begun to cause great uneasiness to his family. of the Company retired, after the labours of “Fighting," says one of his uncles, “ to which the desk and the warehouse, to enjoy the cool he is out of measure addicted, gives his tem- breeze which springs up at sunset from the per such a fierceness and imperiousness that Bay of Bengal. The habits of these mercan: he flies out on every trilling occasion." The tile grandees appear to have been more proold people of the neighbourhood still remem- fuse, luxurious, and ostentatious, than those ber to have heard from their parents how Bob of the high judicial and political functionaries Clive climbed to the top of the lofty steeple of who have succeeded them. But comfort was Market-Drayton, and with what terror the inha- far less understood. Many devices which now bitants saw him seated on a stone spout near mitigate the heat of the climate, preserve the summit. They also relate how he formed health, and prolong life, were unknown. all the good-for-nothing lads of the town into a There was far less intercourse with Europe kind of predatory army, and compelled the than at present. The voyage by the Cape, shopkeepers to submit to a tribute of apples which in our time has often been performed and halfpence, in consideration of which he within three months, was then very seldom guarantied the security of their windows. He accomplished in six, and was sometimes prowas sent from school to school, making very tracted to more than a year. . Consequently the little progress in his learning, and gaining for Anglo-Indian was then much more estranged himself everywhere the character of an ex- from his country, much more an oriental in ceedingly naughty boy. One of his masters, his tastes and habits, and much less fitted to it is said, was sagacious enough to prophesy mix in society after his return to Europe, than that the idle lad would make a great figure in the Anglo-Indian of the present day. the world. But the general opinion seems to Within the fort and its precincts, the English have been that poor Robert was a dunce, if not governors exercised, by permission of the naa reprobate. His family expected nothing good tive rulers, an extensive authority. But they from such slender parts and such a headstrong had never dreamed of claiming independent temper. It is not strange, therefore, that they power. The surrounding country was gogladly accepted for him, when he was in his verned by the Nabob of the Carnatic, a deputy eighteenth year, a writership in the service of the Viceroy of the Deccan, commonly called of the East India Company, and shipped him the Nizam, who was himself only a deputy of off to make a fortune ou to die of a fever at the mighty prince designated by our ancestors Madras.
as the Great Mogul. Those names, once so Far different were the prospects of Clive august and formidable, still remain. There is from those of the youths whom the East India still a Nabob of the Carnatic, who lives on a College now annually sends to the Presiden- pension allowed to him by the Company, out cies of our Asiatic empire. The Company of the revenues of the province which his anwas then purely a trading corporation. Its cestors ruled. There is still a Nizam, whose territory consisted of a few square miles, for capital is overawed by a British cantonment, which rent was paid to the native governments. and to whom a British resident gives, under Its troops were scarcely numerous enough to the name of advice, commands which are not man the batteries of three or four ill-construct to be disputed. There is still a Mogul, who is ed forts, which had been erected for the pro- permitted to play at holding courts and receive tection of the warehouses. The natives, who ing petitions, but who has less power to help composed a considerable part of these little or hurt than the youngest civil servant of the garrisons had not yet been trained in the dis- Company. cipline of Europe, and were armed, some with Clive's voyage was unusually tedious even swords and shields, some with bows and ar- for that age. The ship remained some months rows. The business of the servants of the at the Brazils, where the young adventurei Company was not, as now, to conduct the ju- picked up some knowledge of Portuguese, and dicial, financial, and diplomatic business of a spent all his pocket-money. He did not arrive great country, but to take stock, to make ad- in India till more than a year after he had left vances to weavers, to ship cargoes, and to England. His situation at Madras was most keep a sharp look-out for private traders who painful. His funds were exhausted. His pay dared to infringe the monopoly. The younger was small. He had contracted debts. He vas clerks were so miserably paid that they could wretchelly lodged-no small calamity in a cliscarcely subsist without incurring debt; the mate which can be rendered tolerable to a elder enriched themselves by trading on their European only by spacious, and well-placed own account; and those who lived to rise to apartments. He had been furnished with letthe top of the service, often accumulated con- ters of recommendation to a gentleman who siderable fortunes.
might have assisted him; but when he landed Madras, to which Clive had been appointed, at Fort St. George he found that this gentleman was, at this time, perhaps, the first in import- had sailed for England. His shy and haughty ance of the Company's settlements. In the disposition withheld him from introducing him. preceding century, Fort St. George had arisen sell. He was several months in India before on a barren spot, beaten by a raging surf; and he became acquainted with a single family. in the neighbourhood of a town, inhabited by The climate affected his health and spirits
. many thousands of natives, had sprung up, as His duties were of a kind ill suited to his arlowns spring up in the East, with the rapidity dent and daring character. He pined for his of the prophet's gourd. There were already in home, and in his letters to his relations ex ihr sunurhs many while villas, each surround. pressed his feelings in language softer anal
more , ensive than we should have expected, Madras to the English was by no means com from the waywardness of his boyhood, or from patible. He declared that Labuurdonnais had the inflexible sternness of his later years. “I gone beyond his powers; that conquests made have not enjoyed,” says he, "one happy day by the French arms on the continent of India since I left my native country.” And again, were at the disposal of the Governor of Pondi “I must confess, at intervals, when I think of cherry alone; and that Madras should be rased my dear native England, it affects me in a very to the ground. Labourdonnais was forced to particular manner. . . . . If I should be so far yield. The anger which the breach of the cablest as to revisit again my own country, but pitulation excited among the English was in more especially Manchester, the centre of all creased by the ungenerous manner in which my wishes, all that I could hope or desire for Dupleix treated the principal servants of the would be presented before me in one view.”. company. The Governor and several of the
One solace he found of the most respectable first gentlemen of Fort St. George were carried kind. The Governor possessed a good library, under a guard to Pondicherry, and conducted and permitted Clive to have access to it. The through the town in a triumphal procession, young man devoted much of his leisure to under the eyes of fifty thousand spectators. It reading, and acquired at this time almost all was with reason thought that this gross violathe knowledge of books that he ever possessed. tion of public faith absolved the inhabitants of As a boy he had been too idle, as a man he Madras from the engagements into which they soon became too busy, for literary pursuits. had entered with Labourdonnais. Clive fled
But neither climate, nor poverty, nor study, from the town by night, in the disguise of a nor the sorrows of a homesick exile, could Mussulman, and took refuge at Fort St. David, tame the desperate audacity of his spirit. He one of the small English settlements subordibehaved to his official superiors as he had be- nate to Madras. haved to his schoolmasters, and was several The circumstances in which he was now times in danger of losing his situation. Twice, placed naturally led him to adopt a profession while residing in the Writers' Buildings, he at- better suited to his restless and intrepid spirit tempted to destroy himself; and twice the pis-than the business of examining packages and tol which he snapped at his own head failed to casting accounts. He solicited and obtained go off. This circumstance, it is said, affected an ensign's commission in the service of the him as a similar escape affected Wallenstein. Company, and at twenty-one entered on his After satisfying himself that the pistol was military career. His personal courage, of really well loaded, he burst forth into an excla- which he had, while still a writer, given signal mation, that surely he was reserved for some proof by a desperate duel with a military bully thing great.
who was the terror of Fort St. David, speedily About this time an event, which at first made him conspicuous even among hundreds seemed likely to destroy all his hopes in life, of brave men. He soon began to show in his suddenly opened before him a new path to new calling other qualities which had not be eminence. Europe had been, during some fore been discerned in him-judgment, sagacity, years, distracted by the war of the Austrian deference to legitimate authority. He distin succession. George II. was the steady ally of guished himself highly in several operations Maria Theresa. The house of Bourbon took against the French, and was particularly no the opposite side. Though England was even ticed by Major Lawrence, who was then con then the first of maritime powers, she was not, sidered as the ablest British officer in India. as she has since become, more than a match He had been only a few months in the army on the sea for all the nations of the worlel to- when intelligence arrived that peace had beer gether; and she found it difficult to maintain a concluded between Great Britain and France contest against the united navies of France Dupleix was in consequence compelled to re and Spain. In the eastern seas France ob- store Madras to the English Company; and the tained the ascendency. Labourdonnais, Go- young ensign was at liberty to resume his for vernor of Mauritius, a man of eminent talents mer business. He did indeed return for a shor. and virtues, conducted an expedition to the time to his desk. He again quitted it in orde, continent of India, in spite of the opposition to assist Major Lawrence in soine petty hosti of the British fleet-landed; assembled an ar-lities with the native.., and then again returned my, appeared before Madras, and compelled to it. While he was thus wavering between a the town and fort to capitulate. The keys military and a commercial life, events took were delivered up; the French colours were place which decided his choice. The politics displayed on Fort St. George ; and the contents of India assumed a new aspect. There was of the Company's warehouses were seized as peace between the English and French crowns; prize of war by the conquerors. It was stipu- but there arose between the English and French lated by the capitulation that the English in- companies trading to the East, a war inost habitants should be prisoners of war on parole, eventful and important--a war in whii h the and that the town should remain in the hands prize was nothing less than the magnificent of the French till it should be ransomed. La- inheritance of the house of Tamerlane. bourdonnais pledged his honour that only a The empire which Baber and his Moguls moderate ransom should be required.
reared in the sixteenth century was long one Bat the success of Labourdonnais had of the most extensive and splendid in the world. awakened the jealousy of his countryman, In no European kingdom was so large'a própu. Dupleix, Governor of Pondicherry. Dupleix, lation subject to a single prince, or so large moreover, had already begun to revolve gigan- revenue poured into the treasury. The beauty ic schen es, with which the restoration of land magnificence of the buildings erected by
the sovereigns of Hindostan, amazed even tra-, of the Pannonian forests. The Saracen ruled vellers who had seen St. Peter's. The innu- in Sicily, desolated the fertile plains of Cam. merable retinues and gorgeous decorations pania, and spread terror even to the walls of which surrounded the throne of Delhi, dazzled Rome. In the midst of these sufferings, a great even eyes which were accustomed to the pomp internal change passed upon the empire. The of Versailles. Some of the great viceroys, corruption of death began to ferment into ner who held their posts by virtue of commissions forms of life. While the great body, as a whole, from the Mogul, ruled as many subjects and was torpid and passive, every separate member enjoyed as large an income as the King of began to feel with a sense, and to move with France or the Emperor of Germany. Even the an energy all its own. Just here, in the most deputies of these deputies might well rank, as barren and dreary tract of European nistory, to extent of territory and amount of revenue, all feudal privileges, all modern nobility, take with the Grand-duke of Tuscany and the their source. To this point we trace the power Elector of Saxony.
of those princes who, nominally vassals, but There can be little doubt that this great em. really independent, long governed, with the pire, powerful and prosperous as it appears on titles of dukes, marquesses, and counts, almost a superficial view, was yet, even in its best every part of the dominions which had obeyed days, far worse governed than the worst go- Charlemagne. verned parts of Europe now are. The admi Such or nearly such was the change which nistration was tainted with all the vices of passed on the Mogul empire during the forty Oriental despotism, and with all the vices in- years which followed the death of Aurungzebe. separable from the domination of race over A series of nominal sovereigns, sunk in indorace. The conflicting pretensions of the lence and debauchery, sauntered away life in princes of the royal house produced a long secluded palaces, chewing bang, fondling conseries of crimes and public disasters. Ambi-cubines, and listening to buffoons. A series tious lieutenants of the sovereign sometimes of ferocious invaders had descended through aspired to independence. Fierce tribes of Hin- the western passes, to prey on the defenceless doos, impatient of a foreign yoke, frequently wealth of Hindostan.
A Persian conqueror withheld tribute, repelled the armies of the go-crossed ihe Indus, marched through the gates vernment from their mountain lastnesses, and of Delhi, and bore away in triumph those treapoured down in arms on the cultivated plains. sures of which the magnificence had astounded In spite, however, of much constant misadmi- Roe and Bernier ;-the Peacock Throne on nistration, in spite of occasional convulsions which the richest jewels of Golconda had been which shook the whole frame of society, this disposed by the most skilful hands of Europe, great monarchy, on the whole, retained, during and the inestimable Mountain of Light, which, some generations, an outward appearance of after many strange vicissitudes, lately shone in unity, majesty, and energy. But, throughout the bracelet of Runjeet Sing, and is now desthe long reign of Aurungzebe, the state, not- tined to adorn the hideous idol of Orissa. The withstanding all that the vigour and policy of Afghan soon followed to complete the work of the prince could effect, was hastening to disso devastation which the Persian had begun. The lution. After his death, which took place in warlike tribes of Rajpoots threw off the Musthe year 1707, the ruin was fearfully rapid. sulman yoke. A band of mercenary soldiers Violent shocks from without co-operated with occupied Rohilcund. The Seiks ruled on the an incurable decay which was fast proceeding Indus. The Jauts spread terror along the Jumwithin ; and in a few years the empire had un- nah. The high lands which border on the gone utter decomposition.
western seacoast of India poured forth a yet The history of the successors of Theodosius more formidable race;-a race which was bears no small analogy to that of the succes- long the terror of every native power, and sors of Aurungzebe. But perhaps the fall of which yielded only, after many desperate and the Carlovingians furnishes the nearest paral- doubtful struggles, to the fortune and genius of lel to the fall of the Moguls. Charlemagne was England. It was under the reign of Aurung. scarcely interred when the imbecility and the zebe that this wild clan of plunderers first disputes of his descendants began to bring descended from the mountains; and soon after contempt on themselves and destruction on his death, every corner of his wide empire their subjects. The wide dominion of the learned to tremble at the mighty name of the Franks was severed into a thousand pieces. Mahrattas. Many fertile viceroyalties were Nothing more than a nominal dignity was lent entirely subdued by them. Their dominioas to the abject heirs of an illustrious name, stretched across the Peninsula from sea to Charles the Bald, and Charles the Fat, and sea. Their captains reigned at Poonah, a: Charles the Simple. Fierce invaders, differing Gaulior, in Guzerat, in Berar, and in Tanjore. from each other in race, language, and reli-Nor did they, though they had become great gion, flocked as if by concert from the furthest sovereigns, therefore cease to be freebooters. corners of the earth, to plunder provinces They still retained the predatory habits of their which the government could no longer defend. forefathers. Every region which was not sub The pirates of the Baltic extended their ra- ject to their rule was wasted by their incur vages from the Elbe to the Pyrenees, and at sions. Wherever their kettledrums were beard, length fixed their seat in the rich valley of the the peasant threw his bag of rice on his shoulder Seine. The Hungarian, in whom the trem- hid his small savings in his girdle, and fled with bling monks fancied that they recognised the his wife and children to the mountains or the Gog and Magog of prophecy, carried back the jungles—to the milder neighbourhood of the plunder of the cities of Lombardy to the depth hyæna and the tiger. Many provinces redeeme.