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as a candidate for orders. By him he was ordained, and he rendered himself so acceptable to the Bishop, that he made him his Chaplain. Preferment he had none to give him, at least no opportunity of making provision for his Chaplain presented itself, and the subject of this article was for a long series of confined to a scanty income, obtained from laborious curacies, and from the not much more tolerable labour of pen-drudgery for booksellers.
With his entrance into holy orders, the spirit of orthodoxy and loyalty did not immediately accompany
him. His more intimate associates were still those, who, on all occasions, avowed and practised hostility to the Established Church, and friendship for French principles; and he so far forgot himself, that for a time, at least, he was an active member of the famous, or rather infamous, Corresponding Society. His very particular friends were Mr. Stone, Helen Maria Williams, Mr. Holcroft, Mrs. Wolstoncroft, Dr. Priestley, Dr. Kippis-et id genus omne.
In this interval he published sermons, which were well received, some essays, rather heavy, but which indicated powers of thinking. He translated a very popular theological work, and this with so much success, that it introduced him to the notice of an excellent and venerable prelate, who has be. fore been named, and who always eagerly sought opportunities of distinguishing and rewarding literary exertions, particularly such as promised to be useful to the Church.
Our gentleman had then the discretion to withdraw his name from the above-mentioned society, and demonstrated a little more circumspection, with respect to those with whom he associated. He however married a rigid Dissenter, to whom he eventually owed the prosperity, which attended his close of life.
By a concurrent series of fortunate circumstances, he was finally introduced to the Premier, and employed by him in some confidential services. The consequence of this was preferment so considerable as to secure a perfect independence.
His publications were very numerous, and he had obtained a sort of name among publishers, whicha occasioned many manuscripts of authors to be confided to him for revision and correction. Among others, he superintended the very popular work by Colonel Drinkwater, on the siege of Gibraltar. It is, however, to be apprehended, that he sometimes allowed his name to be prefixed, when he had not a great deal to do with the substance and body of the work.
And so much for Dr. *****
His primum studium est ciere risum
THE vicissitudes of fortune, of principles, and of conduct, which characterised the individual above introduced, not improbably brought to the recolleetion of the Sexagenarian, another personage of still more eccentric and contradictory qualities. For immediately succeeding the above sketch, after the erasure of some lines, in which occur the words inconsistency, unprincipled, uncommonly good luck, we find the following observations :
I have often regretted that on leaving his society, I did not constantly write down the good things said by JOHN WILKES. I transeribe from memory these few particulars concerning him, and I may perhaps hereafter increase the catalogue.
He was really a sad dog, but most delightfully amusing, facetious, witty, well-informed, and with much various, though not profound learning.
He was sometimes so intolerably sarcastic, and more particularly at the expence of his friends in the city, that the wonder is, how he could so long continue in their good graces. He never put any restraint upon himself, when in company, on the other side of Temple-bar, but indulged in all the satire of his wit, at the citizen's expence. A few examples, among a hundred that could easily be given, may suffice.
When confined in the King's Bench, he was waited upon by a deputation from some ward in the city, when the office of alderman was vacant. As there had already been great fermentation on his account, and much more apprehended, they who were deputed, undertook to remonstrate with Wilkes on the danger to the public peace, which would result froin his offering himself as a candidate on the present occasion, and expressed the hope that he would at least wait till some more suitable opportunity presented itself.
But they mistook their man; this was with him an additional motive for persevering in his first intentions. After
much useless conversation, one of the deputies at length exclaimed, “ Well, Mr. Wilkes, if you are thus determined, we must take the sense of thơ ward." “ With all my heart,” replied Wilkes, “I will take the non-sense, and beat you ten to one.
Upon another occasion, Wilkes 'attended a city dinner, not long after his promotion to city-honourse Anong the guests was a noisy yulgar deputy, a great glutton, who, on his entering the dinner room, always with
great deliberation took off his wig, suspended it on a pin, and with due solemnity put on a white cotton night-cap. Wilkes, who certainly was a high-bred man, and never accustomed ta similar exhibitions, could not take his eyes froin so strange and novel a picture. At length, the deputy, with unblushing familiarity, walked up to Wilkes, and asked him whether he did not think that his night-cap became him? “ Oh! Yes, Sir," replied Wilkes,
" but it would look much better if it was pulled quite over your face.”
Wilkes's dislike of the Scotch was sufficiently notorious, yet he was very partial to Boswell, and pften sought his society. I dined with him once, (loquitur Sexagenarius noster) when, ainong some enlightened people, was present a heavy, stupid, consequential fellow, who held some city office, and who often, in the course of the conversation, treated Wilkes with much rudeness. It seemed that Wilkes