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a man, be it known, of scrupulous honesty, even in these things; and would not defraud the revenue for the value of his whole fortune.
Our Squire, howeyer, must not be confounded with the squire of a century, or half a century ago; who followed his pack over gates and hedges in the morning; and went to sleep after dinner in his arm-chair, when he had made himself comfortable with about three bottles of port. The breed of these mere Nimrods and topers is almost extinct; and the country will soon both gain something and lose something by their total extinction. Our Squire, on the contrary, without any pretensions to scholarship, is a man of sense, and a man of information. All the Greek, and nearly all the Latin, which he ever learnt, he has forgotten; but he has read and inquired much on those points, which concern a proprietor of land, who wishes to be useful to those around him, and who farms part of his own estate. What he professes to know, he knows well; and on subjects with which he is unacquainted, he has the prudence to be silent. This is saying a great deal.
He hates France, we remarked, and he hates London. But what must not a man do,—if we may use his own expression again,-" to please the ladies of the family." His wife and daughter took him to France, and his wife and daughter have brought him to London. We suspect, however, as a vacancy is expected in a borough at no great distance from his grounds, that he has some ambitious projects in his brain, and wishes to sound the disposition of the London voters. He is very close about the matter ; but we know for certain, that he is desirous of a seat in Parliament, and flatters himself--as so many have flattered themselves that his practical information might be of use in devising some effectual scheme for the relief of the unhappy agriculturists. Their distress, it is evident, weighs upon his spirits, and lies as a load upon his heart. He has lowered his rents; and was never harsh in exacting the payment of them. His own losses have been something; but they are nothing to him in comparison with the misery, which he sees suffered by poorer and more industrious men. We have, therefore, some intention of
hinting to him-however much we shall regret his absence, and however unwilling we may be to offend “ the ladies of the family," that he will be of more benefit to the interests of agriculture, by living among his tenants on his estate, than by forming general plans for the amelioration of their condition in London.
The three individuals of whom some account has been now given, have been introduced foremost to public notice, merely on account of the places, which they respectively occupy at the Council-table. But there is the most perfect equality among all our members; and we shall proceed to a description of the remainder, as they occur to our minds, without any preconcerted order, or any attempt towards balancing and adjusting their several pretensions. The character, then, whom we shall next bring forward is one essentially different from any of the former. He goes among us by the name of “the Cosmopolite.” In fact, he is a man who belongs to no country, or to every country. He was born at sea ; and, as to origin, is half English and half American. His father, who was himself an adventurer, carried him, when a mere boy, over more than half the globe. In the course of his life he has been in both the East and West Indies; and has passed some years in the United States. At one period also he served as a volunteer in the Independent Army of South America ; and now rejoices at its emancipation from the dominion of Old Spain: he was acquainted with General Miranda, and speaks with enthusiasm of Bolivar and San Martin. It would seem that he wandered long and far in this portion of the world: his very soul is evidently imbued with the remembrance of the elevated plains and wonderful valleys of the Andes : and he portrays, with almost poetic rapture, the burning and golden glow which the sun casts, as he is setting, upon the snow-capped summits of Chimborazo and Cotopaxi.
These varied scenes and complicated adventures, together with the necessity on many occasions of perplexity and
peril, of shifting entirely for himself, have naturally engendered a daring, enterprising, and somewhat romantic character. His mind and body are equally robust. The constitution of the one has borne without injury every variety of climate, or manner of subsistence, as completely as the constitution of the other has been proof against all the changes of fortune, and buffets of mischance. Difficulties, vicissitudes, and privations, have only added to the hardihood of both: and they have not only confirmed the energy of his soul; but quickened his perceptions, and rendered coolness of judgment, and rapidity of decision, habitual to him in the most dangerous emergencies. His knowledge of men has become almost intuitive: he trates the disposition almost at a glance; and sometimes, it must be added, is as free spoken as he is clear-sighted.
Nor has this course of life simply enabled our Cosmopolite to form accurate notions of individuals; but also to take comprehensive views of the progress of the world, and of the interests, prospects, and designs of the several states into which it is divided. There is, besides, another cause, which contributes to this effect; namely-his total freedom from national prepossessions.
Of whatever country he is speaking—whether England, or France, or Russia, or America—he delivers his opinions with a shrewd perspicacity, equally careless and unsparing: while he allows the merits, he has no tender scruples about laying open the faults; and at once tears away the veil, which is thrown, perhaps unconsciously, over the worst and weakest points of the national conduct by every people under heaven. They, who from no discreditable partialities, would gladly soft endown the rigour of his strictures, are yet compelled to acknowledge and admire their original spirit, their unprejudiced candour, and their uncompromising boldness. He feels and acts as a citizen of the world ; all its regions are open to him; and his home is every where.
At present he is residing in England from choice; and it may be, that after all, there is some little affectationif we may be allowed a strange term in his pretensions to cosmopolitism. Even he, at least, cannot forget the circumstances of his birth. Being, as we have said, half an Englishman, and half an American, he inveighs warmly and bitterly against the indulgence of any paltry spirit of rancour, any illiberal or irrational feelings of animosity, either by England towards America, or by America towards England. Sprung from the same stock ; speaking the same language; having, essentially, the same laws, the same habits, the same language, the same literature, the same love and enjoyment of freedom-he considers them to be, in fact, the same nation, although living on different sides of the Atlantic. He proves—as is most easy-that by remaining friends and allies, they pursue the dictates of interest no less than the dictates of nature: and deems it-as is most true—the very extreme of folly, in the present inhabitants of both countries to abstain from cultivating a close and amicable intercourse, because, a century hence, there may be some possible danger of rivalry and collision.
The Projector has already come into incidental notice: we shall now sketch his portrait, as not the least remarkable in our historical gallery. A few touches will be sufficient. The Projector is the life and spirit of our Council : and yet he is often absent in company, and much given to lose himself in reveries. His chief characteristics are a busy brain, a fertile imagination, and a very original turn of mind. His almost sole occupation is to form schemes of all kinds; partly for his own pleasure in forming them, and partly from the hope of being of service to others. His head must be at work ; and, if he were put alone upon a desert island, he would probably still plan on, and amuse his solitude with devising measures for the regulation of every kingdom in Europe. His opinions are entirely his own: he generally laughs at precedent and authority: these magic words are to him sounds without meaning, “ vox et præterea nihil ;” and he thinks by no means the worse of his own notions, because they have never entered the brain of any other man since our planet was inhabited. Nor seems there much chance of his active intellect becoming, at any future time, cold, unproductive, and effete; since it teems every year with more splendid designs; is more prolific of vast projects and magnificent conceptions, and may be compared to a wheel in rapid and continual motion, which grows warmer and warmer as it runs.
Our Projector was intended for the bar; and entered upon the study of the law with a full resolution to read, backwards and forwards, every thing connected with it, which has been written between the present period and the reign of Edward III. As it is, indeed, his legal attainments are far from inconsiderable, and his admiration of the English code, as a whole, enthusiastic. But he soon found himself unfit to trudge onwards in the mere routine of the profession; and, instead of this irksome, but profitable, labour, he means to devote himself to the Herculean task of digesting, simplifying, and arranging, the several parts of our jurisprudence: it being the great object of his ambition to amalgamate our written and unwritten law into one plain, complete, and regular system. A moderate man, certainly, might find ample employment amid the complicated chaos of our statutes and reports : but one science, however difficult and extended, is no sufficient field for the Projector's excursive imagination; he would grasp the whole range of politics, metaphysics, the arts, literature, and criticism; and holds, upon all these branches of knowledge, new and peculiar opinions, which he defends with an inimitable vivacity of manner, and a most imposing air of confidence in their reason, necessity, justice, and good taste.
His port-folio, at this moment, is full of embryo projects, many of which, in all human probability, are never destined to see the light. He has, we understand, three distinct plans for the relief of the agricultural distress—four models of reform in the representation of the people in parliament-and as many general systems of finance. He is, however, less sanguine, than he once was, in his hopes from the ministers of the crown ; since he has received no answer to a plan which he forwarded to government some time ago, for the immediate reduction of the national debt.