« ZurückWeiter »
This evening, Mr. Drake. for the Coroner, with fourteen other gentlemen refiding within the verge of the Court, viewed the body of Jame. Sutherland, efq (fee p. 782,) and immediately afterwards repaired to a public-house in St. Martin's-lane, where they examined thofe witneffes who were upon the foot at the time of the unfortunate cataftrophe. They had before them his publications, and his letters to the King and the Coroner, which they attentively perufed, and deliberated upon for near two hours; when the Coroner received a letter from Mr. Nicholas Harrison, a student of the Temple, requesting to give his opinion as to the ftate of mind of the deceased This gentleman was admitted, and, in a pathetic speech, addreffed the Coroner and Jury in a manner that vifibly affected them. He lamented the caufe of his vifit, and faid, he had known Mr. Sutherland for fome years, and was vifited by him at his chambers, where he often appeared to be in a troubled state of mind.-He knew him to be a man of the ftrictest honour and the most inflexible integrity.— Appearing as an evidence before the Court, it would be improper to give his opinion as to the conduct of perfons in power; but he was forry, and truly forry, to fay, that the neglect which his friend conceived he had met with operated fo powerfully upon his feelin s, as to caufe him to commit the fatal act—an act which had deprived his Majefty of a loval fubject, and fociety of a worthy member. He had no doubt as to his intanity, and was confirmed in his opinion by what Mr. S. had allerted very incoherently a few months ago upon maritime affairs, a fubject which he was well acquainted with, from the fituation he had held to honourably for many years, a Judge of the Admiralty Courts at Minorca and Gibraltar.-In the ftreets he had often teen him walk in great agitation, talking aloud, and brandishing his Rick. But latterly, faid Mr. H. I avoided my friend; as it ill accorded with my feelings to hear the piercing language of neglected merit, especially from fo worthy, fo honourable a character.The Court liftened to Mr. H. with much attention, and put feveral queftions to him as to Mr. S's infanity, which many feemed to have fome doubts of Mr. H very feelingly gave them fatisfactory anfwers.A letter was alfo prefented from George Ward, efq. an eminent merchant in Broad-treet, requefling allo to give his teftimony as to the infanity of Mr. Sutherland.-This gentleman was ordered in, and confirmed Mr. H's evidence as to the honour and integrity of the deceafed :-this he was enabled to do from an He had no acquaintance of thirty years. doubt of his difordered ftate of mind.-Mr. W. was often interrupted with feelings that redound to his honour.--The Court, upon the evidences of thefe gentlemen, immediately brought in the verdict of Lunacy,
Tho. Godfrey, John Smith, Pierre Au guftine, Jofeph Hunt, Daniel Rango, John Finch John Mead, and Charles Clarke, were executed at the Old Bailey. Saturday, September 3.
This morning, foon after five o'clock, their Majefties, and part of the Royal Family, fet out for Weymouth The particulars of all their vifts fhall be duly recorded. Thursday 15.
The post-hoy carrying the mail (on horfeback) from Warrington to Manchester, was murdered about a mile from Warrington, the mail opened, and the letters in the Chester hags for Manchester and Rochdale, and the Liverpool and Warrington bags for Roch dale, taken out, and carried away, Monday 19.
M. Bailli requested leave to refign his office of Mayor of Paris; but, being preffed by a Deputation from the Municipal Body to withdraw his request for the prefent, he thought proper to comply for a few days. Wednesday 21.
The feffions at the Old Bailey ended, when judgement of death was patled upon the following capital convicts, viz. Thomas Playter, Thomas Collis, and Tho was Eaftop, for theep-ftealing; John Simpfon, for stealing in a dwelling-houfe to the value of forty fhillings; John Portmouth, William Trif tram, and John Kerry, for horfe Azaling; John Herbert, Thomas Jones, and Robert Clark, for highway robberies.-Thirty were fentenced to be transported beyond the feas for the term of seven years; fourteen to be imprisoned for certain determinate periods in Newgate, and eleven in Clerkenwell Bridewell; eight to be publicly, and five privately, whipped: and twenty-three were difcharged by proclamation.
The Drury-lane Company performed in the Opera house in the Haymarket. There was much clamour and some disturbance at first, owing to fome inconveniences attending the alterations in the houfe, and chiefly the entrances: which being foon got over, a fcene was introduced of Parnaffus, which was painted and contrived in a very grand ftyle; and Melf. Dignum and Sedgwick fung the Air.-The Haunted Tower then began; and the audience, restored to good-humour, honoured the whole performance with the loudeft plaudits.
This day John Hopkins, efq. was, in due rotation, elected Lord Mayor of London. Friday 30.
Bv a gentleman just arrived from Paris, we are informed, that a letter, faid to be written by the Ex-Princes of France to the French King, has lately been circulated in Paris, and other parts of the kingdom, in which they ftrongly proteft against the proceedings of the National Allembly and the New Conftitution. P. 685.
P. 685. Dr. Blacklock, who is characterifed by Mr. Spence as "one of the most extraordinary characters that has appeared in this or any other age," was born at Annan, in ScotJand, in 1721. His father (a poor tradefman) and his mother were natives of the county of Cumberland, where his paternal ancestors lived from time immemorial. They generally followed agriculture; and were diftinguifhed for a knowledge and humanity above their sphere. His father had been in good circumstances, but was reduced by a series of misfortunes. His mother was daughter of Mr. Rich. Rae, an extenfive dealer in cattle, a confiderable bufinefs in that county; and was equally esteemed as a man of fortune and importance. Bafore young B. was fix months old, he was totally deprived of his eye-fight by the fmall-pox. His father (who by his fon's account of him must have been a particularly good man) had intended to breed him up to his own or fome other trade; but as this misfortune rendered him incapable of any, all that this worthy parent could do was to fhew the utmost care and attention that he was able toward him in fo unfortunate a fituation; and this goodness of his left fo strong an impreffion on the mind of his fon, that he ever fpoke of it with the greatest warmth of gratitude and affection. What was wanting to this poor youth, from the lofs of his fight and the narrowness of his fortune, feems to have been repaid him in the goodness of his heart, and the capacities of his mind. He very early fhewed a ftrong inclination to poetry in particular. His father and a few of his other friends ufed often to divert him by reading; and, among other things, they read feveral paffages out of our pocts. These were his chief delight and entertainment. He heard them no only with an uncommon pleasure, but with a fort of congenial enthusiasm; and, from loving and admiring, he foon began to imitate them. Among thefe early ellays of his genius there was one which is inferted in his works. It was compofed when he was but twelve years old; and has fomething very pretty in the turn of it; and very promifing, for one of fo tender an age-In 1740, his father, being informed that a kiln belonging to a fon-in-law of his was giving way, his folicitude for his intereft made him venture in below the ribs, to fee where the failure lay, when the principal beam coming down upon him, with eighty bufhels of malt, which were upon the kiln at that time, he was in one moment crushed to death. Young B. had at this time attained his nineteenth year; and as this misfortune neceffarily occafioned his falling into more hands than he had ever before been used to, it was from that time that he began, by degrees, to be fomewhat more talked of, and his extraordinary talents more known. About a year after, he was sent for to Edinburgh, by Dr. Steventon, a man of taste, and one of
the phyficians in that city; who had the goodness to fupply him with every thing ne ceffary for his living and ftudying in the univerfity there. Dr. B. looked on this gen tleman as his Mecenas; and the poem placed at the entrance to his works was a tribute of gratitude addrelled to him, in imitation of the firft ode of Horace to his great patron. He had got fome rudiments of Latin in his youth, but could not eafily read a Latin author till he was near twenty, when Dr. Stevenfon put him to a grammar-fchool in Edinburgh. He afterwards studied in that univerfity; where he not only perfected himself in Latin, but alfo went through all the best Greek authors with a very lively pleafure. He was mafter of the French lan-guage, which he acquired by his intimacy in the family of Mr. Provoft Alexander, whofe lady was a Parifian.-After he had followed his ftudies at Edinburgh for four years, he retreated into the country, on the breaking-out of the rebellion, in 1745; and it was during this recefs that he was prevailed on by fome of his friends to publish a little collection of his poems at Glasgow. When that tempeft was blown over, and the calm entirely reftored, he returned again to the University of Edinburgh, and pursued his ftudies there for fix years more. The fecond edition of his poems was published by him there, in the beginning of 1754, very much improved and enlarged; and they might have been much more numerous than they were, had he not fhewn a great deal more nicenefs and delicacy than is ufual, and kept feveral pieces from the prefs for reafons which feemed much stronger to himself than they did to his friends, fome of whom were concerned at his excefs of fcrupuloufnefs, and much wifhed not to have had him deprived of fo much reputation, nor the world of fo many poetical beauties as abounded in them. Dr. B, during his ten years studies at the university, "not only acquired," as Mr. Hume wrote to a friend, "a great knowledge in the Greek, Latin, and French languages, but also made a confiderable progress in all the fciences;" and (what is yet more extraordinary) attained a confiderable excellence in poetry; though the chief inlets for poetical ideas were barred-up in him, and all the vifible beauties of the creation had been long fince totally blotted out of his memory. How far he contrived, by the un common force of his genius, to compenfate for this vaft defect; with what elegance and harmony he often wrote; with how much propriety, how much fenfe, and how much emotion, are things as eafy to be perceived in reading his poems, as they would be difficult to be fully accounted for. Confidered in ei ther of these points, he will appear to have a great share of merit; but if throughly confidered in all together, we are very much inclined to say (with his friend Mr. Hume), " he may be regarded as a prodigy.”—Of his moral
moral character Mr. Hume obferved, "that his modefty was equal to the goodness of his difpofition, and the beauty of his genius;" and the author of the account prefixed to his works, fpenking of the pieces which Dr. B. would not fufter to be printed, and which, he faid, abounded with fo many poetical beauties that nothing could do him greater honour, correcting himself, added, "yet I most fill except his private character, which, were it generally known, would recommead him more to the public efteem than the united talents of an accomplished writer."-Among his particular virtues, one of the fuft to he admired was his eafe and contentedness of mind under fo many circumstances, 2 ene, almoft, of which might be thought capable of depreffing it. Confidering the meannefs of his birth, the lowness of his fituation, the defpicableness (at least as he himself fo fpoke of it) of his perfon, the narrowness and difficulties of his fortane, and, above all, his to early lofs of fight, and his incapacity, from thence, of any way relieving himfeif under all thete burthens, it may be reckoned no fmall degree of virtue in him, even not to have been generally difpirited and complainmg, ach of thefe humiliating circumftances he fpoke of in fome part or other of hus poemy; but what he dwelt upon with the most lating caft of melancholy was his lofs of fight; but this is in a piece written when his fpirits were particularly depreffed by an incident that very nearly threatened his life, from which he had but juft efcaped with a great deal of difficulty, and with all the terrors of fo great a danger, and the dejection occationed by them, juft freth upon his mind. See the beginning of his Soliloquy, p. 153; a poem (as he there fays) occafioned by his efcape from falling into a deep well, where he must have been irrecoverably loit, if a favourite lap dog had not (by the found of its feet upon the board with which the well was covered) warned him of his danger. In the fame melancholy poem he feelingly expreffed his dread of filling into extreme want:
Dejecting profpect !—foon the hapless hour Mycome-perhaps, this moment it impends! Which drives me forth to penury and cold;
Naked, and beat by alt the forms of Beaven; Friendlefs, and guidelefs to explore my way: Tili on cold earth this poor, unhelter'd head Reclining, vainly from the rut lefs blaft Retpite i beg, and, in the fhock, expire."
His good tenfe and religion enabled him to get the better of these fears, and of all his other calamities, in his calmer hours; and, indeed, in this very poem (which is the moft gloomy of any he had written), he feemed to have a gleam of light fall in upon his mind, and recovered Fimfelf enough to exprefs his hopes that the care of Providence, which had hitherto always protected him, would again interfere, and dulipate the clouds that were gathering over him. Towards the close of the fame piece, he thewed not only that he
was fatisfied with his own condition, but that he could difcover fome very great bletfings in it; and through the general courfe of his other poems one may difcern fuch a juftness of thinking about the things of this world, and fuch an eafy and contented turn of mind, as was every way becoming a good Chriftian and a good philofopher. This was the charafter given of our author by Mr. Spence, who, in the year 1754, took upon himself the patronage of Dr. Blacklock, and fuccefffully introduced him to the notice of the publick. In that year he published a pamphlet, intituled, "An Account of the Life, Character, and Foems of Mr. Blacklock, Student of Philofophy in the University of Edinburgh," 8vo; which, with fame improvenients, was prefixed to a quarto edition of Dr. Blacklock's Poems, published by subfcription. By this publication a confiderable fum of money was obtained, and foon after our poet was fixed in an eligible fituation in the University of Edinburgh. In his dedica tion of the fecond part of "Paraclefis" to Mr. Spence, he fays, "It is to your kind patronage that I owe my introduction to the republick of letters; and to your benevolence, in fome measure, my prefent comfortable fituation." In 1760 he contrbured fome poems to a Scotch collection published at Edinburgh in that year; and being there ftyled "the Rev. Mr. Blacklock," it appears he had then entered into holy orders. About 1766 he obtained the degree of D. D.; and in 1767 published "Paraclefis; or, Confolations deduced from Natural and Revealed Religion, in Two Differtations," 8vo. In 1768 he printed "Two Difcourfes on the Spirit and Evidences of Chriftianity," tranflated from the French of Mr. James Armand, and dedicated to the Rev. Moderator of the General Affembly," 8vo.; and in 1774 produced "The Graham; an Heroic Pallad, in Four Cantos," 4to. In 1776 appeared "Remarks on the Nature and Extent of Liberty, as compatible with the Genius of Civil Societies; on the Principles of Government, and the proper Limits of its Powers in Free States; and on the Juftice and Policy of the American War; occationed by porufing the Obfervations of Dr. Price on thefe Subjects. Edinburgh." 8vo. This, we have been affuted, was writ ten by our author; who at length, at the age of 70, died on the 14th of July laft.
P.731. The character of Mr. Tulke, we are defired to fay, on the authority of those who knew him heft, is totally mitreprefented by the ill-timed malice of fome illiberal perfon, whom, in fome concerns of an extenfive bufinefs, Mr. T. had probably offended.
P. 782. While the late unfortunate Mr. Sutherland is the fubject of converfation, it may not be uninteresting to the world to learn, what it is but juftice to his memory to publish, the opinions of him, which, for a fenies of years, have been entertamed by all thofe
Military Governor, and the strong arm of Power, can only be exerted with impunity in other climes than thefe. On his first trial with General Murray they gave him 300. damages; upon the fecond they gave him 5cool. As his mind, however, was formed to honour, it was not money that could restore him to happiness; he ftill languished under the idea that he continued to be mifreprefented to thofe whom he had not of fended. The laft effufions of his mind thew what was uppermoft in it, nor have they perhaps been in one point unavailing. He who could be fo anxious for fixing the belief of his attachment to one little community, when he was going to a ftate where nations, and even worlds, are loft in the infinitude of space and of eternity, could never have been other than loyal and dutiful. In the mafs of mankind his anxiety for his own fame will not perhaps be much regarded; but let us not forget that it is this individual anxiety which is the great fpur to the general practice of honour, and that men will cease to be virtuous when they cease to be ftudious of character. Of his particular claims upon Government it may not be improper decently to speak. He had been charged with dif patches of high confequence from Lord Weymouth to the Governor of Minorca; they were of magnitude enough to employ the ftrictest attention of the French. To avoid difcovery he proceeded by a circuitous out to his deftination; and in Italy, for his better concealment, he hired a Savoyard veffel to convey him. But he was fo carefully watched that he was immediately arrested in his voyage, and the enemy thought his miffion of fufficient importance to justify the violation of an amicable flag. He destroyed his difpatches, but was forced to pay the price of the veifel, which he, in fact, had been the means of lofing. He remained many months in the horrors of a French prifon; and to this day his expences from his departure from England to the end of his captivity have never been reimbursed. His claims have been allowed, and the justice of the Miniftry would certainly have relieved him; but the lofs of his place, and the failures he experienced in occupations to which he was wholly a ftranger, and which he had begun when funk into the vale of years, had reduced him to what was in no wife congemial with his mind, to importunity, which wa only urgent because it was neceffary. Thus depreciated with his Sovereign, and pressed by poverty, his fpirit-began to droop, his intellects became deranged, and he perithed in a manner which, however it may be blameable, must always be affecting.
The following lines on tas melancholy event have been fent us by Dr. Crane: "Ill-fated Sutherland! lamented friend! Whofe foul indignant burits its fetters here; No herald's leave 1 afk to weep thy end, Or point out to the crowd the fricken deer. "11b fated
thofe who ever had an opportunity of forming any with accuracy. Spirit and highmindedness had ever been his characterifticks. A life marked by activity and generous firmness would have fufficiently proved this, without the fad conviction of it which the manner of his death fo forcibly impreffes. His ftation had been honourable, for in him had been reposed one of the highest trusts which a man can receive from his fellowcreatures, the power of deciding upon the rights of property. As a judge of the Admiralty Court at Gibraltar, he obtained and preferved a character highly diftinguished for integrity and faithfulness, for clearness and precision: few of his decrees were appealed from, and thofe few were always confirmed. Upon the ceffion of Minorca, at the peace of Paris, with an honeft ambition to promote his fair fortune, he embraced the fame fituation in that island. But, however disappointed in his hope of receiving fuperior advantage, the character he had raised accompa nied him thither; and though the accumulation of misfortune, at the end of a life which had once known eafe and happinefs, depreffed him into fuch glooms as deprived him of his reafon; yet the respect of thofe who knew him attended him, after thofe things had been loft which in general are necedary to command it. He was a man whofe heart was largely extended; his benevolence led him to confider mankind as his friends; and for his friends were never wanting his abilities, his good offices, nor (while he had one) his fortune. Many who are gone before him to their great account, many who now furvive, and have pafled him in the race for fortune and honour, sould afford strong teftimony of this. In garrifons of fuch importance as thofe in which he served, a large portion of the army are fettled in fucceflion; and not a few among the military, as well as the navy, will perhaps willingly bear witness, that his house, his table, and his purfe, were open to all who deferved them. Probably, had his virtues been of a kind more prudent and lefs fhining, he would not have been driven to the only act of his life which his friends will be unhappy in remembering. But poverty alone was not the only cause of his desperation. The bravery of his heart, and the fpirit of his mind, had formed him to be peculiarly and even fiercely jealous, when his claims to the characters of a patriotic citizen and loyal fubject came to be attacked; and it may be faid, that his fenfibility never recovered the wound that had so been given to it. By whom, and for what purpose it was inflicted, it would be now as needlefs to enquire as to difcover. It may, however, be truly faid, that an arbitrary removal from his office was the root of all his misfortunes. What a Brith jury thought of his case, is upon record; and he has been one among feveral inftruments of proving that the language of a
"Ill-fated Sutherland! from Time's dark womb Truth may emerge, and vindicate thy fame; When every Briton will revere thy tomb, And future poets hail thy honour'd name."
The following is the fubftance of his letter to the King, and an extract of one which he Home time ago fent to Mr. Pitt. "To the King.
"In the moment that my heart's blood is leaving it, I express my forrow that you have allowed yourself to be impofed upon, and that you should still persist in retaining fuch prejudices against me. With fpirited and dutiful appeals, and humiliating fupplications, I have addreffed you and your Ministers. Allegiance and protection are conftitutionally reciprocal; and as the former never was for faken by me, I had a right to expect that you would afford the latter.
"The idea of a ftake being driven through my body, has not terror to make me with that the act which I now perform should be confidered in any other light but of deliberate reasoning.
"Inftead of going abroad, the means of which were not left me, I have long intended to shoot myself. I did not merit degradation. My confcience told me I was entitled to honour, favour, and reward. I forgive General Murray; but cannot refift, even at this time, the wish I have to fet your Majefty right with respect to myself. The fubjoined extract will fufficiently explain to your Majefty my innocence. Parliament accepted the petition of General Murray, but repeatedly threw out mine; for the ftern commands of Prerogative were obliged to yield to the milder ones of Influence.
ter which he fent to General Murray, refpecting his being fufpended from his ap pointment It fates, as the caufe of the General's difpleasure, that, on the evening when the news arrived in Minorca of the taking of Charles-town, there were general illuminations and rejoicings. Mr. Sutherland was among the foremost in demonstrating his joy on that occafion, by a large bonfire, &c. His daughters, Lemielf, and an officer, walked through the town to see the lights; and in paffing the General's house, without any defign in the world, they happened to laugh louder than ufual, which, he fuppofes, gave offence, as, next morning, although it was Sunday, he received notice that he was fufpended from his appointment. As it requir ed a court martial to cafhier the officer, he met with no punithment.]
"Extract of a letter which I wrote to Mr.
"Let me recommend, Sire, to you to collect the letters written by me to Mr. Stephens of the Admiralty; you will there fee the abuse of authority and irregularity of General Murray. I did not at that time know that none fhould refide in the island of Minorca but fuch as pleased the General. But I was willing to facrifice every thing but justice and honour to keep him quiet. At his inftance I filled up but one commiffion instead of two, for two privateers to eruize againft the two ftates we were then at war with; by which I was fome hundreds of pounds out of pocket.
"I had long determined that my diffolution fhould take place in the fame manner, and on the fame spot, that I now fall. When my hard cafe fhall be published, how will the world be shuddered to hear that inhumanity had deprived me of every refource but death. Yet, in the midft of all my misfortunes, 1 fubfcribe myself your Majefty's loyal fubject, JAMES SUTHERLAND. "Written on the 13th, though dated the 17th, of Auguft, 1791; it being the day on which I intend to shoot myfelf in the Greenpark, as the King paffes to his levee."
[Here he quotes a long extract from a let
Pitt, when my petition was thrown out of Parliament.
"From the 21st of December laft, the day on which my petition was presented (but not accepted) to Parliament, I have existed by felling every little thing of value I had; and now I have nothing left to fell. Let me then, Sir, implore you, by every thing you hold dear, to preferve from the effects of despair a perfon who, fince he is driven to egotize, holds himself up as a man of worth and ho nour, and who merits nothing from his King and Country fo much as favour and reward; and who adds, that, were it not that he is a father, would rather perish than be importunate. J. SUTHERLAND." See his "Letter to the Electors of Great Britan," in our Review, p. 843.
P. 782. A falfe and invidious account having been given in a public paper of a refpectable character, now no more, we are requested to lay before the publick a more juft and honourable teftimony, where the reputation of a late very dignified Prelate is fo nearly concerned.-Dr. T. is faid by this ill-natured writer "to have been first ftruck with her charms when he was weeding a garden belonging to a gentleman with whem he was dining; and that, after baving had her called into the hall, the, with her finging and native beauty fo much enraptured him, that he fent her to a boarding-school, and foon after married her."-That fuch was the fituation in which the worthy Prelate found the future partner of his comforts and hi forrows is abfolutely falfe. He found her an adopted daughter, in a gentleman's family; a well-educated, polite, and amiable member of it, with a very genteel fortune: poffeffed of charms, both perforal and intellectual, which fully justified the preference which he gave to her — except that he was ten years younger than might have been withed. His Lordship's enquiries went not back to her origin; the was what the appeared to be; elegant in her perfon, affable in ht. eportment, engaging