Imágenes de páginas

though it should be remembered that their opinions must have been influenced by the knowledge of many circumstances which are now passed away and lost, the judgment they displayed in the exercise of so large a discretion is a fair subject for discussion and difference of opinion; but it is hardly fair to question the good faith with which they performed their task; nor is it very just to say that the loss of a MS. “ is owing, on “ the most candid hypothesis, to the not very filial “ negligence of Lord Clarendon's sons.” The fire at New Park, and the dispersion of the Chancellor Clarendon's MSS. subsequent to the death of his sons, show at once that there were more ways than filial negligence by which one of his MSS. might be lost. Sir James Mackintosh appears also to lay much stress upon the supposed obscurity of Mr. Shaw, in his estimate of the value of the MS. from which the first edition was taken :-“ The copy made for the press by Wogan “and Low was not, however,” he remarks, “ taken from “ the original MSS. ... but from an intermediate one, “ written (as is said) under the superintendence of the “noble historian by one Shaw, of whom nothing is “ known; when, or how, or where it was written, is “ also unknown to us.” Mr. Shaw's name and character were, however, very well known to Lord Clarendon's family, and to his descendants;' and he is mentioned frequently in the diari :s and letters of the Earl of Clarendon and Rochester. He acted as private See the Catalogue of Portraits at the Grove, portrait of Mr. Shaw, vol. iii. secretary to Lord Clarendon, and accompanied him in his banishment; and the fact of a MS. being in his hand carried with it the weight of highest probability that it was written, “ as it is said,” under the superintendence of the author, whose fortunes he faithfully followed in the days of adversity.


The whole of the History, as first published, has been carefully collated with the MSS. from which the first edition was printed, now in the Bodleian Library, by Dr. Bandinel; and great respect is certainly due to an opinion founded on such careful labour, and which he expresses in the advertisement to the edition of 1826, “ that Lord Clarendon's sons were justified in with“ holding some parts of the History, which for many “ reasons were at that moment unfit for publication ; “and that they had in no one instance added, sup“pressed, or altered any historical fact.”

The following copy of verses, addressed by Lord Hampden in 1777 to Thomas Villiers, Earl of Clarendon, is inserted as containing an allusion to the collection of pictures at the Grove :

Description of the Grove, 1777.
Hydiaci toties frueris quibus otia luci
Musa, repende brevi, si mens tua grata, camenâ.
Est ubi tot dulces formet natura recessus ?
Aut ubi tot scenas ars intermisceat aptas ?

Interiora domûs vestit pretiosior auro
Vandicii, Leliique manu depicta supellex :
Per muros vivæ facies spirare videntur.
Hic vernæ vates non Phæbo indigna locuti ;

Quotque nec invitâ sophiam coluere Minervâ.
Ob patriam, ob regem pugnando vulnera passos
Ecce duces, aulæque viros decora alta, forique.
Exulis egregii vultus agnosco verendos :
Ut vigor, ut candor placido simul enitet ore !
Quid subiisse tuo patris ac nati omne periclum,
Quid pietas, quid rara fides, quid longa laborum
Te juvit series, quid tot decursus honorum
Ingrato sub rege reum? Nil splendida prosunt
Connubia, aut gener, ipse vices subiturus easdem,
Nil binæ neptes ad sceptra Britannica natæ.
Macte senex, virtute! viget tua fama perennis.
Æquior, en, cumulat te postera laudibus ætas,
Et tua progenies redivivo fulget honore,
Promissura tuâ similes de stirpe nepotes.

Extra compta nitet, sed rustica villa ; nec omnem
Munditiæ steriles fructum pepulere, lucrumque.
Non juga detrectat mannus : non dama sodalem
Aspernatur ovem, nec haræ cultura pudori est.
Haud impune fluens lapidem rotat unda molarem,
Et pinguis niveos inter strepit anser olores.
Non plumas immunis avis Junonia pandit.
Hic flores verni, hic, hiemalia pabula, napi ;
Umbram si silvæ, silvæ quoque ligna ministrant ;
Inter odoriferos frutices seges aurea surgit.
Horrea nunc campos, nunc rustica templa coronant,
Attonitosque trahit longe lateque colonos
Area congestä ditissima frugis acervis,
Panque columnato gaudens, novus advena, fano,
Et casa non nudos miratur Scotica clivos.
Ruris herus solers ita miscuit utile dulci,
Ars ita naturam, natura ita temperat artem,
Auspiciisque cluet junctis plenissima villa.

Ut facis, hæc gnavus vectare uberrima circum Rura diu, fructuque operum lætare tuorum, Hyde, nec hoc spernas veteris rude carmen amici!




VOL. 1.

“ But fools the good alone unhappy call,

For ills or accidents that chance to all.
See godlike Turenne prostrate on the dust!
See Sidney bleeds amid the martial strife!
Was this their virtue, or contempt of life ?”

Pope, Essay on Man, Ep. iv.

“ If the celebrating the memory of eminent and extraordinary persons, and transmitting their great virtues for the imitation of posterity, be one of the principal ends and duties of history, it will not be thought impertinent, in this place, to remember a loss which no time will suffer to be forgotten, and no success or good fortune could repair.”

CLARENDON'S Hist. of the Reb., vol. iv. p. 240.

“Non hæc, o Palla, dederas promissa parenti,

Cautius ut sævo velles te credere Marti.
Haud ignarus eram, quantum nova gloria in armis,
Et prædulce decus primo certamine posset.
Primitiæ juvenis miseræ, bellique propinqui
Dura rudimenta."

VIRGIL, Æn. xi. 152-157.

« AnteriorContinuar »