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flash of passion was as transitory as it was sudden; and if, in the course of its influence, he conceived himself to have injured the feelings of his meanest dependent, he was uneasy until he had in some way or other made atonement for the supposed offence.
In society Lord Somerville's presence diffused a degree of general cheerfulness, and even happiness, which, perhaps, many men more learned, more witty, or more profound, would have in vain endeavoured to inspire. His mind had a general tincture of British literature; and he was, in particular, so well acquainted with the works of Shakspeare, that few men could either quote from him more aptly, or enjoy more keenly an allusion to his writings. But Lord Somerville had chiefly studied the great book of human life; and his conversation was full of anecdotes, both serious and humorous, which evinced the depth of his observation, and his knowledge of character.
These talents for conversation were regulated as well as adorned by his general disposition to please and to amuse. His good nature led him to search for, and his good sense to discover, the particular taste of his friends or his guests; and, keenly interested as he usually was in the prosecution of some favourite scheme of his own, he was never so engrossed by it as to prevent his interesting himself in the pursuits of others. Lord Somerville's kindness seemed to give him the same prejudice in favour of the improvements or plans of his friends, which self-love, in most instances, is apt to limit to one's own. He delighted to praise, not from a desire
of increasing his popularity, or bespeaking favour with the parties interested in his eulogium, but from an honest and kindly feeling, which veiled the defects of his friends, and augmented their merits even in his own eyes. He uniformly brought cheerfulness with him into society, and left content and augmented happiness behind him.
Lord Somerville spent a considerable portion of his time in Scotland every year. The society in that country was some years ago, and still is, somewhat limited, by the exclusive prejudices of an ancient gentry in favour of their own rank. No man, in a rational degree, knew the value of ancient family and high birth better than Lord Somerville, and he was not indifferent to his own claims upon that account; but he endeavoured, on many occasions, and with eminent success, to unite the different ranks of society, without hurting the feelings of the lower, or compromising the dignity of the higher orders; and it was the usual consequence, that the latter departed instructed, the former honoured, and both gratified, from their mutual intercourse.
Lord Somerville's attachment to field sports was another cause of his frequent visits to his native country. His seat at the Pavilion near Melrose, to which are attached extensive salmon-fishings, particularly favourable for the use of the rod, afforded him great facilities in that respect. It may not be uninteresting to brothers of the angle to know, that Lord Somerville commenced this amusement, the noblest work, certainly, in which the fishingrod can be exercised, rather late in life; he was
reckoned a most able proficient, and, with the help of fine tackle, a light hand, and a sure eye, was often successful when the best fishers of the country would have despaired. A range of extensive moorland pasture in Lammermoor gave Lord Somerville the opportunity of moor-fowl shooting, an exercise which, from the wild regions into which it carries the sportsman, has much more interest than the tamer amusements of partridge and pheasant shooting. Among Lord Somerville's personal accomplishments, was the much coveted quality of being an excellent shot. We return to those by which he was distinguished in elegant society.
Lord Somerville's exterior and deportment were admirably qualified to render him the central point of such a society. To a handsome person and face, he added the most polished manners, uniting frankness, kindness, and courtesy, in such just proportion, that it was impossible to say which quality predominated. He had the rare merit (only to be found in a Briton of high rank) of combining the knowledge of the agriculturist with the manners of the courtier ; and, as has been said of Virgil in his Georgics, could treat even of the lowest agricultural topics without losing his dignity of character and situation. In these pursuits, as well as in the rural sports, which he followed keenly and successfully, he had frequent and familiar intercourse with the lower classes and peasantry, and most of them in the neighbourhood were known to him by person and name; yet his affability was so well qualified by dignity, that there occurred no instance of any one being seduced by it to exceed the bounds of
due respect. His extensive and well-judged charities rendered him still dearer to the peasantry, and it was always with an especial view to their augmented comforts, that he shaped those various plans on which his mind was ever so actively employed.
Such was Lord Somerville. Distinguished in public life by patriotism, and an enlightened zeal for the improvement of the country to which he belonged, and dear to his numerous friends, from the warmth of his heart, and the amiable personal qualities which we have endeavoured to describe. These properties had doubtless their corresponding foibles, arising out of a sanguine temper and quick feelings. But these were of a nature so innocent, that, like a slight irregularity in a beautiful countenance, they rather gave individuality to the character than impaired its lustre. Although Lord Somerville's health had been early impaired by the consequences of a severe fall from a curricle, succeeded by some other accidents, it was, to external appearance, in a great measure restored, though his own internal sensations seemed to assure him of the contrary. Indeed, the weakness of constitution, which repeated accidents had brought on, made his habits somewhat those of a valetudinary. Yet as these were thrown aside upon excitation, (so that we have seen the individual, who did not willingly leave a public place in town without wrapping himself in a fur pelisse, throw himself into the Tweed at midnight, when the river was full of icicles, for the amusement of spearing salmon by
torch-light,) his friends naturally thought that the precautions so readily dispensed with on particular occasions, were not strictly necessary, and hoped that, in the course of nature, they might have long enjoyed the happiness of his society. Diis aliter visum! And we may add, that it is no good omen of the times, otherwise gloomy, when those so well qualified by situation and talents to sustain the best interests of the country, are removed from us when their services might be most availing.
When the fatal period arrived, Lord Somerville was travelling towards Italy with his sister, Miss Somerville. He had taken leave of his native country, and of his neighbours, with a feeling of boding anxiety, which expressed itself in his solemn and affectionate farewell. Yet on his journey he was not in worse health than usual, until he reached Switzerland, where he was taken ill at Vevai, of a disease, a species of dysentery, we believe,-from which he might possibly have recovered, had he had immediate medical assistance. But, with his usual kindness, he had left his personal medical attendant behind him at Pontarlier, to take care of Sir William Harte, a countryman of distinction, whom he found extremely ill at that place. Thus deprived of the means of immediately checking the disorder, its symptoms soon proved mortal. He lingered a few days, possessed of his senses, reconciled to his fate, and endeavouring to soothe the sorrows of his sister, and of those around him. The presence of an English clergyman afforded him in his last moments the consolation of receiving the