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vanished with the accession of George III, in 1760; and there was evil as well as good in the repose. With the final planting of the principle of freedom implied in the quiet succession of that House, men grew anxious to reap its fruit, and saw it nowhere within their reach. Pitt's great administration in the latter years of George II., merged these opening dissatisfactions in an overruling sense of national glory; but with the first act of the young king, with the stroke of the pen which made Lord Bute a privy councillor, they rose again. Party violence at the same time awakened; and, parodying Voltaire's remark, we may say, that people were now existing who called William Pitt a pretender and Bubb Dodington a Statesman. To “recover monarchy from the inveterate usurpation of oligarchy,” was, according to the latter eminent person's announcement to his patron, the drift of the Bute system. The wisdom of a Younger Party in more modern days, which (copying some peevish phrases of poor Charles I.) compares the checks of our English constitution to Venetian Doges and Councils of Ten, had its rise in the grave sagacity of Bubb Dodington. The method of the proposed “recovery” was also notable; and had furnished precedents to later times. It was simply to remove from power every man of political distinction, and replace him with a convenient creature. Good means were taken. The first election of the new reign was remarkable for its gross venality; “undertakers” had not been so rise or so active since the reign of James I.; one borough even pubincly advertised itself for sale; and so far the desired success seemed within easy reach. But any shrewd observer might foresee a great impending change under the proposed new system, in the reaction of all this on the temper of the people out of doors. Sir Robert Walpole did strange things with the Commons' House, but for great popular purposes. A bungling imitation of such things, for purposes wholly unpopular, would be a different matter. In a word, it might be clear to such a man as Wilkes, who had managed again to effect his return for the borough of Aylesbury, that a good day for a Demagogue was at hand. He had the requisites for the character. He was clever, courageous, unscrupulous. He was a good scholar, expert in resource, humorous, witty, and a ready master of the arts of conversation. He could “abate and dissolve a pompous gentleman” with singular felicity. Churchill did not know the crisis of his fortune that had driven him to patriotism. He was ignorant that within the preceding year, after loss of his last seven thousand pounds on his seat for Aylesbury, he had made an unsuccessful attempt upon the Board of Trade. He was not in his confidence when he offered to compromise with government for the embassy to Constantinople. He was dead wnen he settled into a quiet supporter of the most atrocious of “things as they were.” What presented itself in the form of Wilkes to Churchill, had a clear unembarrassed front; —passions unsubdued as his own; principles rather unfettered than depraved; apparent

manliness of spirit; real courage; scorn of conventions; an open heart and a liberal hand; and the capacity of ardent friendship. They entered at once into an extraordinary alliance, offensive and defensive. It is idle to deny that this has damaged Churchill with posterity, and that Wilkes has carried his advocate along with him into the Limbo of doubtful reputations. But we will deny the justice of it. It is due to Churchill that we regard Wilkes from the point of view he presented between 1761 and 1764;-the patriot untried, the chamberlain unbought, befriended by Temple, countenanced by Pitt, persecuted by Bute, and, in two great questions which affected the vital interests of his countrymen, the successful assertor of English liberty. It is impossible to derive from any part of their intercourse one honest doubt of the sincerity of the poet. He flung himself, with perhaps unwarrantable heat, into Wilkes's personal quarrels; but even in these, if we trouble ourselves to look for it, we find a public principle very often implied. The men who had shared with Wilkes in the obscene and filthy indulgences of Medmenham Abbey, were the same who, after crawling to the favourite's feet, turned upon their old associate with disgusting pretences of indignation at his immorality. If in any circumstances satire could be forgiven for approaching to malignity, it would be in the assailment of such men as these. The Roman senators who met to decide the fates of turbots, were not more worthy of the wrath of Juvenal. As to these Medmenham Abbey proceedings, and the fact they indicate, we have nothing to urge but that the fact should be treated as it was. The late wise and good Dr. Arnold lamented that men should speak of religious liberty, the liberty being irreligious ; and of freedom of conscience, when conscience is convenience. But we must take this time now mnder consideration as we find it, politics meaning something quite the opposite of morals: one side shouting for liberty and the other for authority, without regard in the least to what neither liberty nor authority can give us, without patient earnestness in other labour of our own, of obedience, reverence, and selfcontrol. We before remarked, that Churchill's genius was affected by this characteristic of the time; and that what, as he so often shows, might otherwise have lain within his reach, even Dryden's greatness, even Pope's exquisite delicacy, this arrested. It was this which made his writing the rare mixture it so frequently is, of the artificial with the natural and impulsive; which so strangely and fitfully blended in him the wholly and the partly true; which impaired his force of style with prosaical weakness; and (to sum up all in one extreme objection) controlling his feeling for nature and truth by the necessities of partisan satire, levelled what he says, in too many cases, to a mere bullying reissue of conventional phrases and moral commonplace. But it is not by these indifferent qualities in his works he should be, as he has too frequently been, condemned. Judge him at his best; judge him by the men whom he followed in this kind of composition; and his claim to the respectful and enduring attention of the students of English poetry and literature becomes manifest indeed. Of the gross indecencies of Sir Charles Hanbury Williams, he has none. He never, in any one instance, that he might fawn upon power or trample upon weakness, wrote licentious lampoons. There was not a form of mean pretence or servile assumption which he did not denounce. Low, pimping politics, he abhorred: and that their vile abettors, to whose exposure his works are so incessantly devoted, have not carried him into utter oblivion with themselves, sufficiently argues for the sound morality and permament truth expressed in his manly verse. He indulged too much in personal invective, as we have said; and invective has been famed for picking up the first heavy stone that lies by the wayside without regard to its form or fitness. The English had not in his day borrowed from the French those nicer sharpnesses of satire which can dispense with anger and indignation ; and which now, in the verse of Moore and Beranger, or the prose of our pleasant Punch or London Charivari, suf. fice to wage all needful war with hypocrisy and falsehood. In justice let us add to this latter admission, that Satire seems to us the only species of poetry which appears to be better understood than formerly. There is a painful fashion of obscurity in verse come up of late years, which is marring and misleading a quantity of youthful talent; as if the ways of poetry, like those of steam and other wonderful inventions, admitted of original improvements at every turn. A writer like Churchill, who thought that even Pope had cramped his ge. nius not a little by deserting the earlier and broader track struck out by Dryden, may be studied with advantage by this section of “Young England,” and we recommend him for that purpose. Southey is authority on a point of the kind; and he held that the injurious effects of Pope's dictatorship in rhyme, were not a little weakened by the manly, free, and vigorous verse of Churchill, during his rule as tribune of the people. Were we to offer exception, it would rest chiefly on the fourth published poem of Churchill, which followed Night, and precedes what Southey would call his tribunitial career. This was the first book of the Ghost, continued, at later intervals, to the extent of four books. It was put forth by the poet as a kind of poetical Tristram Shandy—the ready resources of a writer who seized carelessly every incident of the hour; and, knowing the enormous sale his writings could command, sought immediate vent for even thoughts and fancies too broken and irregular for a formal plan. The Ghost, in his own phrase, was “a mere amusement at the most; a trifle fit to wear away the horrors of a rainy day: a slight shot-silk for summer wear, just as our modern statesmen are.” And though it contained some sharply written characters, such as the well-known sketch of Dr. Johnson (Pomposo), and some graceful easy humour, such as the fortune-teller's experience of the various gullibility of man; it

is not, in any of the higher requisites, to be compared with his other writings. It is in the octo-syllabic measure, only twice adopted by him. The reason of his comparative failure in this verse may be guessed. Partly no doubt it was, that he had less gusto in writing it; that, not having a peremptory call to the subject, he chose a measure which suited his indolence. Partly also we must take it to be, that the measure itself, by the constantly recurring necessity of rhyme, (an easy necessity,) tends to a slatternly diffuseness. The heroic line must have muscle as it proceeds, and thus tends to strength and concentration. The eight-syllable verse relies for its prop on the rhyme; and, being short, tends to do in two lines what the heroic feels bound to do in one. But to his career as fellow-tribune with Wilkes, we now return. The new system had borne rapid fruit. In little more than twelve months, Lord Bute, known simply before that date as tutor to the heir-apparent, and supposed holder of a private key to the apartments of the heir-apparent's mother, had made himself a privy-councillor; had turned the Duke of Cumberland and the Princess Amelia out of the liturgy; had given himself the rangership of Richmond Park; had dismissed Legge from the Exchequer, and emptied and filled other offices at pleasure; had made Sir Francis Dashwood, Wilkes's quondam associate, and predecessor in the colonelcy of the Bucks militia, a King's minister; had made Bubb Dodington a lord; had turned out Pitt; had turned out Lord Temple; had turned out the Duke of Newcastle; had made himself Secretary of State; had promoted himself to be Prime Minister; had endued himself with the order of the Garter; had appointed to every lucrative state office in his gift, some one or other of his countrymen from the other side of Tweed; and had taken within his special patronage a paper called the Briton, written by Scotchmen, presided over by Smollett, and started to defend these things. They had not, meanwhile, passed unheeded by the English people. When Pitt resigned, even Bubb Dodington, while he wished his lordship of Bute all joy of being delivered of a “most impracticable colleague, his majesty of a most imperious servant, and the country of a most dangerous minister,” was obliged to add, that the people were “sullen about it.” “Indeed, my good friend,” answered Bute, “my situation, at all times perilous, is become much more so, for I am no stranger to the language held in this great city; ‘Our darling's resignation is owing to Lord Bute, and he must answer for all the consequences.’” The truth was, that the people of that day, with little absolute power of interference in public affairs, but accustomed to hear themselves appealed to by public men, were content to see their favourites in office; and to surrender substantial authority for a certain show of influence with the parliamentary leaders. But with the words of their “darling” ringing in their ears—that he had been called to the ministry by the voice of the people, that to them he was accountable, and that he would not remain where he could not guide: they began to suspect that they must now help themselves, if they would be helped at all. It is a dangerous thing to overstock either House with too strong an anti-popular party; it thrusts away into irresponsible quarters too many of the duties of opposition. Bute was already conscious of this, when the first Number of the North Briton appeared. The clever Colonel of Buckinghamshire militia, like a good officer, had warily waited his time. He did not apply the match till the train was fully laid, and an explosion sure. It has excited wonder, that papers of such small talent should have proved so effective; but smaller would have finished a work so nearly completed by Bute himself. It was the minister not the demagogue, who had arrayed one section of the kingdom in bitter hostility against the other. Demagogues can never do themselves this service; being after all the most dependent class of the community, the mere lackeys of the lowest rank of uninstructed statesmen. A beggarly trade in sooth, and only better than the master's trade they serve. It is bad enough to live by vexing and exposing a sore, but worse to live by making one. There was violence on Wilkes's side; but there was also, in its rude coarse way, success. On the side of his opponents, there was violence and there was incapacity. Wilkes wrote libels in abundance; but as he wittily expressed it, that he might try to ascertain how far the liberty of the press could go. His opponents first stabbed the liberty of the press in a thousand places; and then, as Horace Walpole said with a happier wit than Wilkes's, wrote libels on every rag of its old clothes. Churchill assisted in the North Briton from the first; and wherever it shows the coarse broad mark of sincerity, there seems to us the trace of his hand. But he was not a good prose satirist. He wanted ease, delicacy, and fifty requisites beside, with which less able and sincere men have made that kind of work effective. He could sharpen his arrow-heads well; but without the help of verse could not wing them on their way. Of this he became himself so conscious, that when a masterly subject for increase of the rancour against the Scotch presented itself, and he had sent the paper to press for the North Briton, he brought it back from the printer, suppressed it and recast it into verse. Wilkes saw it in progress, and praised it exultingly. “It is personal, it is poetical, it is political,” cried the delighted demagogue. “It must succeed " The Prophecy of Famine, a satire on Scotland and Scotchmen, appeared in January, 1763, and did indeed fulfil the prophecy of Wilkes. Its success was most remarkable ; its sale rapid and extensive to a degree altogether without precedent. English Whigs were in raptures, and the Annual Register protested that Mr. Pope was quite outdone. Scotch placehunters outstripped the English players in performance of the comedy of Fear; for they felt with a sure instinct, like Swift's spider when the broom approached, that to all intents and purposes of their existence, the Judgment

Day was come. Nothing could have delighted Churchill as this did. The half-crowns that poured into his exchequer, made no music comparable to that of these clients of Lord Bute, sighing and moaning in discontented groups around the place-bestowing haunts of Westminster. He indulged his exuberance of delight, indeed, with characteristic oddity and self-will. “I remember well,” says Dr. Kippis, “that he dressed his younger son in a Scotch plaid, like a little Highlander, and carried him everywhere in the garb. The boy being asked by a gentleman with whom I was in company, why he was clothed in such a manner! answered with great vivacity, “Sir, my father hates the Scotch, and does it to plague them s” The anecdote is good. On the one side, there is what we may call attending to one's child's habits; and on the other, a satisfactory display of hereditary candour and impudence. There is also a fine straight-forward style. Johnson himself could not have related the motive better. Put “his” instead of “my,” and it is indeed precisely what Johnson would have said. Boswell. Sir, why does Churchill's little boy go about in a Scotch dress Johnson. Sir, his father hates the Scotch, and does it to plague them? He plagued them thoroughly, that is certain; and with good cause. We need not tenderly excuse ourselves by Boswell's example for admiring this Prophecy of Famine. “It is indeed falsely applied to Scotland,” says that good North Briton; “but on that account may be allowed a greater share of invention.” We need not darken what praise we give by the reservations of the last amiable and excellent historian of England. “It may yet be read,” says Lord Mahon, “with all the admiration which the most vigorous powers of verse, and the most lively touches of wit can earn in the cause of slander and falsehood.” It seems to us that, without either forced apologies or hard words, we may very frankly praise the Prophecy of Famine. A great poet and a faithful Scotchman did not scruple to say of it, that even to the community north of Tweed it should sheathe its sting in its laughable extravagance ; and in truth it is so written, that what was meant for the time has passed away with its virulent occasion, and left behind it but the lively and lasting colours of wit and poetry. “Dowdy Nature,” to use the exquisite phrase with which it so admirably contrasts the flaring and ridiculous vices of the day, has here too reclaimed her own and dismissed the rest as false pretences. We should as soon think of gravely questioning its Scotch “chameleon,” as of arguing against its witty and masterly exaggerations. With consummate ease it is written ; sharp readiness of expression keeping pace with the swiftest ease of conception; never the least loitering at a thought, or labouring of a word. In this peculiar earnestness and gusto of manner, it is as good as the writers of Dryden's more earnest century. Marvel might have painted the Highland lass, who forgot her want of food as she listened to madrigals all natural though rude: “and, while she scratched her lover into rest, sank pleased, though hungry, on her Sawney's breast." Like Marvel, too, is the starving scene of withering air, through which no birds “except as birds of passage flew;” and which “no flower embalmed but on E white rose, which on the tenth of June by instinct blows ;”—the Jacobite emblem, and the Pretender's birthday. In grasp of description, and a larger reach of satire, the Cave of Famine in the poem ranks higher still. The creatures which, when admitted in the ark, “their saviour shunned and rankled in the dark " the webs of more than common size, “where half-starved spiders preyed on half-starred flies.” are more than worthy of the masterhand of Dryden. We cannot leave the poem without remarking the ingenuity of praise it has exacted from Mr. Tooke. It has been observed of it, he says, and he adopts the observation, “that the author displays peculiar skill in throwing his thoughts into poetical paragraphs, so that the sentence swells to the conclusion, as in prose”!! This we must call the first instance, within our knowledge, of an express eulogy of Poetry on the ground of its resemblance to Prose. Dr. Johnson was wont to note a curious delusion in his day, which has prevailed very generally since, that people supposed they were writing poetry when they did not write prose. Mr. Tooke and his friend represent the delusion of supposing poetry to be but a better sort of prose. Churchill was now a marked man. He had an unbounded popularity with what are called the middle classes; he had the hearty praise of the Temple section of Whigs ; he was “quoted and signed” by the ministerial faction for some desperate deed they but waited the opportunity desperately to punish; he was the common talk, the theme of varied speculations, the very “comet of the season,” with all men. The advantage of the position was obvious; and his friends would have him discard the ruffles and gold lace, resume his clerical black coat, and turn it to what account he could. “His most intimate friends,” says the good Dr. Kippis, “thought his laying aside the external decorums of his profession a blamable opposition to the decencies of life, and likely to be hurtful to his interests; since the abilities he was possessed of, and the figure he made in political contests, would perhaps have recommended him to some noble patron, from whom he might have received a valuable benefice " Ah! good-natured friends. Could this unthinking man but have looked in the direction of a good benefice, with half the liquorish ardour of patriot Wilkes to his ambassadorship and chamberlainships in prosect, no doubt it might have fallen in his lap. ut he “lacked preferment” as little as the Prince of Denmark himself. He had no thought that way. He had no care but for what he had in hand; that whilst he could hold the pen, “no rich or noble knave should walk the earth in credit to the grave,” beneficed or unbeneficed. There was not a disnser of patronage or power, though “kings ad made him more than ever king a scoundrel made before,” whom he would have flattered or solicited. It was when his friend was sounding a noble acquaintance and quondam

associate as to chances of future employment, that with sullen sincerity he was writing to his friend, “I fear the damned aristocracy is gaining ground in this country.” It was when his friend was meditating the prospective comforts of a possible mission to Constantinople, that he was beneath the portrait of his friend devoutly subscribing the lines of Pope, “.4 soul supreme in each hard instance tried ?” – When Horace Walpole anticipated the figure these days would cut in history, and laughingly described to his dear Marshal Conway how that the Warburtons and Gronoviuses of future ages would quote them, then living, like their wicked predecessors the Romans, as models of patriotism and magnanimity, till their very ghosts must blush ; when he painted the great duke, and the little duke, and the old duke, and the Derbyshire duke, all-powerful if they could but do what they could not—hold together and not quarrel for the plunder; when he set before him starkmad opposition patriots, abusing one another more than any body else, and Caesar and Pompey scolding in the temple of concord; though he did not omit Mr. Satirist Churchill from the motley scene—even he did not think of impugning his rough plainspeaking sincerity. “Pitt more eloquent than Demosthenes, and trampling on proffered pensions like ... I don't know who; Lord Temple sacrificing a brother to the love of his country; Wilkes as spotless as Sallust; and the flamen Churchill knocking down the foes of Britain with statues of the gods !” Certain it is, that with far less rich material than statues of the gods, Churchill transacted his work. It was a part of his hatred of the hypocrisies to work with what he had before him :—small ungodlike politicians enough, whom he broke into smaller pieces, and paved Pitt's road with, back in to power. Meanwhile his private life went on, in its impetuous rounds of dissipation, energy, and self-reproach; hurried through fierce extremes, by contrast made more fierce. One of his existing Notes to Garrick is the record of a drunken brawl. One of his Letters to Wilkes is the after-penance of repentance. Unable further to resist the storm that had been raised against him, Bute resigned on the 8th of April, 1763. The formation of the new ministry, with Dashwood ennobled as Lord le Despenser; with another monk of Medmenham Abbey, Lord Sandwich, popularly known as Jemmy Twitcher, placed a few months later at the admiralty; and with Lord Halifax, secretary of state; is to be read of to this day in the histories or might possibly be disbelieved. “And so Lord Sandwich and Lord Halifax are statesmen, are they !” wrote Gray. “Do not you remember them dirty boys playing cricket?” Truly they were still as dirty, and still only playing out their game. “It is a great mercy,” exclaimed Lord Chesterfield, “to think that Mr. Wilkes is the intrepid defender of our rights and liberties; and no less a mercy, that God hath raised up the Earl of Sandwich to vindicate our religion and morality.” The histories also record the publication, on the 23d of April in the same year, of the fortyfifth number of the North Briton. A new ministry has great superfluous energy; and an evil hankering to use it. The wished-for occasion was supposed to have come; the new ministers thought, at any rate, what Walpole calls a coup-d'eclat might make up for their own absurd insignificance; and on the information of the publisher, who was arrested and examined for the supposed printer, “that Mr. Wilkes gave orders for the printing, and that Mr. Churchill (the poet) received the profits arising from the sale,” warrants were issued for the arrest of Wilkes and Churchill. The great questions that arose upon these warrants, and Wilkes's vindication through them of the most valuable privileges of English freedom, are well-known matters of history. Some curious incidents, preserved in his second letter to the Duke of Grafton, are less notorious. “I desired to see the warrant,” he writes, after describing the arrival of the king's messengers. “He said it was against ‘the authors, printers, and publishers of the North Briton, No. 45,' and that his verbal orders were to arrest Mr. Wilkes. I told him the warrant did not respect me; that such a warrant was absolutely illegal and void in itself; that it was a ridiculous warrant against the whole English nation;” (in effect, forty-eight persons were attacked under it: publishers dragged from their beds, and whole officefuls of printers placed in durance') “and I asked why he would rather serve it on me than on the Lord Chancellor, or either of the Secretaries, or Lord Bute, or Lord Corke, my nextdoor neighbour. The answer was, I am to arrest Mr. Wilkes. About an hour afterwards two other messengers arrived, and several of their assistants. While they were with me, Mr. Churchill came into the room. I had heard that their verbal orders were likewise to ap.. him, but I suspected they did not now his person: and, by presence of mind, I had the happiness of saving my friend. As soon as Mr. Churchill entered the room, I accosted him. “Good-morrow, Mr. Thomson. How does Mrs. Thomson do to-day ! Does she dine in the country " Mr. Churchill thanked me; said she then waited for him; that he had only come for a moment to ask me how I did; and almost directly took his leave. He went home immediately, secured all his papers, and retired into the country. The messengers could never get intelligence where he was. The following week he came to town, and was present both the days of hearing at the Court of Common Pleas.” On the second day, another was present—a man whose name is now one of our English household words, but who unhappily thought more of himself that day as the King's Sergeant painter—a dignity he had just received and was to wear for some brief months—than as that painter of the people who had from youth to age contended against every form of hypocrisy and vice, and, unbribed and unpurchasable assailant of public and private corruption, was to wear that dignity for ever. As Chief-Justice Pratt delivered his immortal judgment against General Warrants, Hogarth was seen in a corner of the Common Pleas, pencil and sketchbook in hand, fixing that famous caricature,

from which, as long as caricature shall last, Wilkes will squint upon posterity. Nor was it his first pictorial offence. The caricaturing had begun some little time before, greatly to the grief both of Wilkes and Churchill; for Hogarth was on friendly terms with both, and had indeed, within the past two years, drunk “divine milk-punch” with them and Sir Francis Dashwood in the neighbourhood of Medmenham Abbey. Disregarding their earnest remonstrance, he assailed Pitt and Temple at the close of the preceding year in his first print of the Times. The North Briton retaliated; and the present caricature of Wilkes was Hogarth's rejoinder. It stung Churchill past the power of silence. The Epistle to William Hogarth was published in July, 1763. With here and there those strangely prosaic lines which appear in almost all his writings, and in which he seems to make careless and indolent escape from those subtler and more original words which were alike at his command, this was a dashing and vigorous work. With an avowal that could hardly have been pleasing to Wilkes himself —that railing thousands and commending thousands were alike uncared for by the writer —it struck Hogarth where he was weakest: in that subjection to vanity which his friends confessed in him; in that enslavement to all the unquiet distrusts of envy, “who, with giant stride, stalks through the vale of life by virtue's side,” which he had even confessed in himself. We do not like to dwell upon it, so great is our respect for Hogarth's genius; but, at the least, it spared that genius. Amid its savage ferocity against the man, it was remarkable for a noble tribute to the artist. It predicted the duration of his works to the most distant age; and the great painter's power to curse and bless, it rated as that of “a little god below.” But this did not avail against the terrible severity. There is a passage beginning, “Hogarth, I take thee, Candour, at thy word;" marked by a racy, idiomatic, conversational manner, flinging into relief the most deadly abuse, which we must fairly think appalling. All who knew the contending parties stood aghast. “Pray let me know,” wrote Garrick, then visiting at Chatsworth, to Colman, “how the town speaks of our friend Churchill's Epistle. It is the most bloody performance that has ever been published in my time. I am very desirous to know the opinion of the people, for I am really much, very much hurt at it. His description of his age and infirmities is surely too shocking and barbarous. Is Hogarth really ill, or does he meditate revenge! Every article of news about these matters will be most agreeable to me. Pray, write me a heap of stuff, for I cannot be easy till I know all about Churchill and Hogarth.” And of course the lively actor sends his “loves” to both Hogarth and Churchill. “Send me Churchill's poem on Hogarth,” writes old moneyloving Lord Bath from Spa; “but if it be long, it will cost a huge sum in postage.” With his rejoinder, such as it was, Hogarth lost little time. He issued for a shilling, before the month was out, “The Bruiser C. Churchill, (once the

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