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and if you would wish to be respected as a father, inflict no more suffering on him who has no one else to look to for
protection, than is really necessary for his future welfare.”
'Indeed a cheaper and better pamphlet for the ufe of the poor, was scarcely ever before offered to the public. In these pages the head and heart of the author
appear to equal advantage ; and we cannot help giving such a publication our unreserved approbation.
The Life of Major 7. G. Semple Life, containing a
faithful Narrative of his alternate Vicissitudes of Splendour and Misfortune, written by Himself. The Whole interspersed with interesting Anecdotes and authentic Accounts of important public Transactions.
Stewart. 7s. THIS little great man was, as it is well known, tried
and condemned at the Old Bailey in 1795, where he was sentenced to be transported to Botany Bay. His crime was (windling, and every attempt to elude the verdict of the law proved ineffectual. Accordingly he was fent, with other convicts in the Lady Shore, to the place of his destination. A mutiny in the ship once more set him free, and he, together with some of the officers, found their way back to England. Upon his return he was lodged in Tothill Fields Bridewell, whence has issued this most curious piece of biography, That it is amusing we cannot deny ; but we must with. hold from it the palm of approbation.
The consummate pride and intolerable vanity of this narrative are truly ludicrous ; nor can we satisfactorily depend on the truth or the series of events here related. The object of the author is, most probably, to excite the public commiferation by a recital of adverse circumiances, which, in his opinion, the greatness of his military exploits ought to have prevented. But in this
flippery lippery ftare great folks are peculiarly exposed ; and indeed they experience (to use the elegant phraseology of the title-page) “alternate viciffitudes of fplendour and misfortunc !”
The Preface displays the spirit in which the work is written, and the reader will smile at the perusal of
" When any one offers his own memoirs to the world, it is very natural to ask what are his claims to the notice of the public? To this the author of the following sheets can justly reply, that perhaps there exifts not another individual who has been so much the play-thing of fortune as himself; and be can boldly add, that few have been so unjuftly calum. niated. With shame he acknowledges that there have been parts of his life he can neither justify, nor means to defend ; but this work, the truth of which reits not upon his own teltimony only, but upon that of characters whom suspicion it. felf would not dare to doubt, will prove that his life has been by no means a series of disgraces.
“ Such as it has really been, he lays it before the world, ready to receive from the impartial voice of the public that piaise or that cenfure to which he may be found entitled.
“To the republic of letters he feels the necessity of apolo. gizing for any inaccuracies which may be found in the composition. Born a soldier, though happy in an excellent education, the profefion of arms engaged his entire soul; something muft, therefore, he allowed for the production of one no way in the habit of writing beyond private correspondence or military orders. Besides, ever accustomed to execute his ideas with rapidity, he confesses his want of patience to touch, retouch, and ponder, words and syllables; but though his penods may want that harmonious chime which amuses the ear, they thall never be deficient in truth and candour.
“The many exalted characters whose names are introduced in this work, will, the author truits, excuse the freedom he has used with them; he has, indeed, had the honour of standing by their fides in the field of battle and in the drawing-room ; and he hopes that not one of them will be ashamed of appearing along with him on paper.
« In some parts he has, however, suppressed some circum-
“Finally, should any material fact be mistated, which may
The last chapter affords a curious specimen of the
“ At my arrival in town I was deposited in Tothil-Fields
of my readers will, perhaps, be
tory, I know nothing of it, farther, than that it is, with the
my person was known to them, to pretend business in all the different spunging-houses : I thus knew their faces, and by the help of a good look-out, for a long time avoided them. One day, however, near Charing-cross, I was met in a hackneycoach by two bailiffs, who had a writ againit me; as soon as I perceived them, I ordered the coachman to drive as fast as he possibly could into the Horse Guards, promising to take all consequences upon myself, and to give him a guinea for his trouble. The descendant of Jehu exerted his utmost skill, but without being able to prevent one from attempting to seizc the horses, while the other attempted to storm the duor ; a dexterous application of the whip, huwever, made the post the former had taken very uneasy, and I repelled, as well as I could, the attacks of the other invader. Both clung, however, to the sides of the coach, till we drove altogether into the Horse Guards : there I leaped out, and having explained the matter to the officer then on duty, made a bow to the bailiffs, and walked through the Park, while they returned by the gate they had entered, amidit the laughter of all who bea held the scene.
“ Another time, sitting at breakfast, I was attacked by three of them, and got off by the following stratagem: I then lived in Oxendon-ftreet; and almost opposite to melodged Lord (then the honourable Mr.). Semple, who bore a commission in the Guards; the similarity of names, as both were called Captain Semple, had occasioned many mistakes; but though
our names were alikc, our circumstances differed widely; for he owed nobody a farthing, and I owed every body who would give me credit. As soon as these vultures of the law encered the room, they, with the usual etiquette, made me acquainted with the purport of their visit, and concluded, by giving me a very pressing invitation to a house kept by one of them. As I wished to decline this honour, I affected much surprize, and told them they must needs he mistaken, as I was in debt to nobody; they asked me if I was not Captain
emple? “ Then gentlemen,” said I, “ the whole is cleared up, there is another Captain Semple lives in this street, I fee him now,” pointing at his lodgings, “looking through the window; and this is not the first, nor hardly the twentieth time, that I have been arrested for him; in short, his attornies, his duns, and his hailiffs, will force me to quit this street." I then professed myself perfectly ready to go with them, if they inlisted upon it ; but that I was quite wearied with such inceffant visits of that nature; and must, for my own sake, bring any illegal act before a court of justice, that 'I might be rid of such plagues for the future. This puzzied the bailiffs, who, with some reluctance, went down stairs, and, at the door, enquired of the fervant of the houie, if there was any other Captain Semple in that street; she told him there was, and opening the door, pointed out to them the same house that I had done. This fatisfied them, and I profited by the diverSion thus made in m; favour to escape, leaving my honourable namefake to settle the affair with them as he could. Ia a word, he was taken to a (punging-house, in spite of all his remonftrances, till the agent of the regiment released him; I have been told, he afterwards attempted a prosecution against the bailiff, but it appearing that no wanton use had been made of the writ, and that the mistake was almoft unavuidable, he obtained no satisfaction.
« Another time Colonel -- had the misfortune to be arretted, and two good furélies being demanded, I undertook to procure them for my old friend and companion. Two were accordingly found; but, alas ! notwithstanding they (wore positively, they were not credited, and we were forced to come again into court next day; then, however, we succeeded, for having procured a new face, I dressed one of the former (a Jew, who fald Nippers about the Atreets) in such a manner,