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after his nomination to his judicial office, Wyndham set out for Ireland, and landed in Dublin twenty-two days later, more than seven having been spent at Chester, near which place he embarked at Parkgate, waiting for a farourable wind. He was received in Ireland by the English officials with every demonstration of goodwill; and for some time Primate Boulter found in him one of his most valuable assistants in carrying out his policy. On the death of Lord Chancellor West, after a tenure of his office which little exceeded a year and a half, in 1726, Primate Boulter lost no time in writing to the English ministers, to urge that the post should again be filled by one of their own countrymen, but recommended that Wyndham or Dalton, the Chief Baron of the Exchequer, an Englishman who had been a year in this country, should be promoted, no less on account of the encouragement it would give to an Englishman of merit to accept the place vacated, than of the knowledge of Irish affairs possessed by both judges. Without any delay the King's letter for the appointment of Wyndham, whom Primate Boulter had placed first on account of his seniority, was despatched; anii within three weeks of the de:ath of his predecessor, Wyndham was sworn in as Chancellor and as one of the Lords Justices."
While Chief Justice of the Common Pleas, Wyndham had gone circuit with regularity, taking either the Munster or the North-East; and after his promotion to the woolsack, he appears to have been no less active in the discharge of his new duties. The Corporation of Dublin presented him with the freedom of the city in a gold box which cost £30; the University conferred on him an honorary degree; while the King expressed his approbation of his services by creating him a peer five years after his appointment as Chancellor. During the thirteen years in which he retained the custody of the Great Seal, Wyndham was sworn a Lord Justice eight times, and acted as Speaker of the House of Lords in six sessions. The Chancellor, whose income is estimated at that time to have been about £3,600 a year, was expected to maintain great state; and we find Wyndham taking part in many grand functions, and extending splendid hospitality. In 1729 he was prominent in the ceremony of laying the foundation-stone of the Houses of Parliament; in 1730 he exercised the privilege of a Lord Justice to confer knighthood on the Lord Mayor of Dublin ; in 1732, when on his way to the County Fermanagh, to visit Sir Ralph Gore, the Speaker of the House of Commons, he was accorded by the Corporation of Cavan a great reception; and on his arrival at Sir Ralph's seat, Bellisle, on Lough Erne, he was received with every mark of respect ; in 1733 he gave an entertainment in honour of the Lord Lieutenant, the Duke of Dorset; and in 1739 he
Wyndham appointed as his purse-bearer Archbishop Boulter's friend and secretary, Ambrose Philips, the poet, and, as his aide-de-camp-an officer to whom he was entitled as a Lord Justice-Colonel Edward Richbell. (See Dublin Weekly Journal, December 24, 1726'; “ Dictionary of National Biography,” vol. xlv., p. 172; and “ Letters written by Hugh Boulter, D.1).,” vol. i., p. 88.)
presided in the House of Lords as High Steward at the trial of Lord Santry for murder, setting out from his house in St. Stephen's Green, attended by a vast retinue, in a coach drawn by six horses.
Four months after Lord Santry's trial, in July, 1739, Wyndham, although then only in his fifty-eighth year, wrote to Sir Robert Walpole, tendering his resignation, on the ground of ill-health, which he attributed to the fatigue incurred on that occasion. During the later years of his official life there is a change in the tone of Primate Boulter's references to him; and more than once the Primate says that the timorousness of the Chancellor was the cause of difficulties in the government of Ireland. Wyndham har resisted an attempt to exclude from the Irish Bar Lord Clare's father, John Fitz Gibbon, who was a conrert from the Roman Catholic Church, at a time when Primate Boulter was representing the danger of admitting such persons; and there is some indication that, at any rate for a time, he was under the influence of the immortal Dean. In the diary preserved by Wyndham's secretary, it is recorded that, in 1735, Swift was a guest at the Chancellor's table. Two years afterwards Wyndham had to express disapproval of the Dean's conduct in hanging out a black flag on St. Patrick's Cathedral, and ringing a funeral peal, on a change made in the gold coinage ; but it is not clear what action he took a few weeks later, when Primate Boulter, on account of an alleged insult offered to him by Swift at a mayoral banquet, declined civic hospitality. Wyndham had never married ; and on his resignation he prepared to return at once to England, where all his relatives lived, and to which country he had paid at least one risit while resident in Ireland. In the announcement of his departure, which took place on September 8th, 1739, the popularity to which he had attained is displayed :-"This morning their Excellencies the Lords Justices, attended by a squadron of horse and the battle-axe guards," says The Dublin Evening Post, “ went to George's Quay, where His Excellency the Lord Wyndham took boat for Parkgate; several persons of distinction waited on him to the water-side to wish him a good voyage ; his lordship is gone off with a universal good character, and greatly esteemed by all that had the honour to be known to him.” Wyndham's elder and only surviving brother, who possessed the estate and baronial residence, then falling into ruin, near Salisbury, which had belonged to their grandfather the great judge, resided in that fair city; and in its calm atmosphere, under the shade of its glorious cathedral, Wyndham passed the few remaining years of his life. He died in 1745, and is buried in the cathedral which he knew so well, under what has been pronounced to be a beautiful monument by the masterly hand of Michael Ryobrack. He left handsome bequests to Wadham College; and in its hall a portrait of him, which is here reproduced, is to be seen.'
1“ Dictionary of National Biography," vol. Ixiii., pp. 250–252; “ Letters written by Hugh Boulter, D.D." vol. i., pp. 26, 85, 86, 88, 97, 104 ; vol. ii., pp. 67, 153;
The position of Master of the Rolls—an office which then entailed no judicial duties—was held in 1739 by the Right Hon. Thomas Carter, an ancestor of the Carters of Shaen Manor. He was an Irishman; and inherited considerable property from his father, who is said to have secured for King William, while fighting for that monarch at the Battle of the Boyne, valuable papers belonging to King James. To his possessions and his influence, Carter added by his marriage with one of the daughters and heiresses of Thomas Claxton, a sister of the lady who was first married to the eccentric Earl of Rosse, and afterwards to Lord Chancellor Jocelyn.' He became a member of the Irish House of Commons, as his father had been before him ; and to political intrigues was due probably the permission granted in 1725 to the Earl of Berkeley, who then held the Mastership of the Rolls, to sell to him the rerersion of his office. The hearts of the English officials sank within them when they heard of this transaction; and Primate Boulter wrote that all of those whose affections were still with their country were afraid that the necessity of supporting the English interest was forgotten when a native of Ireland was allowed to purchase what was then considered one of the greatest places of the law, inasmuch as it was held for life, and not at pleasure like other legal offices. Carter took what was called the patriotic side in the House of Commons; and about that time his conduct much excited the indignation of Primate Boulter and some leading politicians. Some years later, however, when Carter aspired to the Speaker's Chair, at the time Henry Boyle was elected to it, it was rumoured that there was a secret understanding between him and the Government, and that the Primate was a party to the arrangement, which was, howerer, not acquiesced in by Lord Chancellor Wyndham. In the year of which I am writing an extraordinary announcement, which I may perhaps be allowed to quote as a specimen of the journalism of that day, appeared with regard to Carter. It reads as follows:-“ Last week the Right Hon. Thomas Carter, Esq., Master of the Rolls, had a toe cut off on account of a mortification; and we hear he is now much better.” He recovered completely from what was, judging by this paragraph, a very alarming state of health, and survived for many years. In 1754, when a violent political convulsion took place, he is said to have been removed from the Mastership of the Rolls, but in the following year was
“Miscellanea Genealogica et Heraldica," edited by Joseph J. Howard, 2nd Ser., vol. iv., pp. 34, 54, 80; O'Flanagan's " Lives of the Lord Chancellors of Ireland," vol. ii., p. 51; Duhigg's “ History of the King's Inns," pp. 277, 285 ; Gilbert's “* Ancient Records of Dublin," vol. vii., p. 368 : “ Letters to and from Bishop Nicolson, p. 589; "Modern History of Wiltshire,” by Sir R. C. Hoare, “ Hundred of Chalk,” P. 82; " Registers of Wadham College,” by the Rev. Robert B. Gardiner, p. 400; Sundon Correspondence, British Museum MS. 20,102, f. 136; Letters from Coghill to Southwell, British Museum MS. 21,122, ff. 31, 66, 87; 21,123, ff. 1, 7; Newcastle Correspondence, British Museum MS. 32,690, ff. 354, 356; Dublin Evening Post, Aug. 1-5, and 8–12, 1732 ; Sept. 18–22, 1733; July 1-8, 1738 ; Sept. 4-8, 1739; Dublin News-Letter, Jan. 11-15, 1736-1737; the Journal, vol. xxxiii., p. 298.
See the Journal, vol. xxviii., p. 338.