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trious, and patient, and elaborate, in collecting the materials for his historical works. Like Gibbon, he had dedicated a life to literature; like Gibbon, he had gathered to the shores of a beautiful lake, remote from great capitals, a large, or, at least, sufficient, library in each case, I believe, the library ranged, as to numerical amount, between seven and ten thousand); and, like Gibbon, he was the most accomplished litterateur among the erudite scholars of his time, and the most of an erudite scholar among the accomplished litterateurs.
After all these points of agreement known, it remains as a pure advantage on the side of Southey—that he was a poet; brilliant in his descriptive powers, and fascinating in his narration. It is remarkable, among the series of parallelisms which have been, or might be, pursued between two men, that both had the honour of retreating by deliberate choice from a Parliamentary life. Gibbon, after some silent and inert experience of that warfare; Southey, with a prudent foresight of the ruin to his health and literary usefulness, won vicariously from the experience of others.DE QUINCEY. From 1785 to 1859.
CHARLES V. CHARLES showed a facility to be directed by those around him, in early years, which gave little augury of the greatness to which he afterwards rose.
By the persuasions of his evil counsellors he addressed that memorable letter to Ximenes, which is unmatched, even in court annals, for cool and base ingratitude. He thanked the regent for all his past services ; named a place for a personal interview with him, where he might obtain the benefit of his counsels for his own conduct and the government of the kingdom ; after which he would be allowed to retire to his diocese, and seek from heaven that reward which Heaven alone could adequately bestow.
Such was the tenor of this cold-blooded epistle, which, in the language of more than one writer, killed the cardinal. This, however, is stating the matter too strongly. The spirit of Ximenes was of too stern a stuff to be so easily extinguished by the breath of royal displeasure. He was, indeed, deeply moved by the desertion of the sovereign whom he had served so faithfully; and the excitement which it occasioned brought on a return of his fever in full force. But anxiety and disease had already done their work upon his once hardy constitution, and this ungrateful act could only serve to wean him more effectually from a world that he was soon to part with.
In order to be near the king, he had previously transferred his residence to Roa. He now turned his thoughts to his approaching end. Death may be supposed to have little terror for the statesman who, in his last moments, could aver, “ That he had never intentionally wronged any man; but had rendered to every one his due, without being swayed, as far as he was conscious, by fear or affection.”
Yet Cardinal Richelieu, on his death bed, declared the same.
As a last attempt, he began a letter to the king. His fingers refused, however, to perform their office, and, after tracing a few lines, he gave it up. The purport of these seems to have been to recommend his university at Alcalá to the Royal protection. He now became wholly occupied with his devotions, and manifested such contrition for his errors, and such humble confidence in the Divine mercy, as deeply affected all present. In this tranquil frame of mind, and in the perfect possession of his powers, he breathed his last, November 8th, 1517, in the eighty-first year of his age, and the twenty-second since his elevation to the primacy. The last words which he uttered were those of the psalmist, which he used frequently to repeat in health, “In te, Domine, speravi,”—In thee, Lord, have I trusted.
* Cardinal Richelies, by fear or aflechout being sa
His body, arrayed in his pontifical robes, was seated in a chair of state, and multitudes of all degrees thronged into the apartment to kiss the hands and feet. It was afterwards transported to Alcalá, and laid in the chapel of the noble college of San Ildefonso, erected by himself. His obsequies were celebrated with great pomp, contrary to his own orders, by all the religious and literary fraternities of the city; and his virtues commemorated in a funeral discourse by a doctor of the university, who, considering the death of the good a fitting occasion to lash the vices of the living, made the most caustic allusions to the Flemish favourites of Charles, and their pestilent influence on the country.
Such was the end of this remarkable man: the most remarkable, in many respects, of his time. His character was of that stern and lofty cast which seems to rise above the ordinary wants and weaknesses of humanity. His genius, of the severest order, like Dante's or Michael Angelo's in the regions of fancy, impresses us with ideas of power that excite admiration akin to terror. His enterprises, as we have seen, were of the boldest character; his execution of them equally bold. He disdained to woo Fortune by any of those soft and pliant arts which are often the most effectual. He pursued his ends by the most direct means. In this way he frequently multiplied difficulties; but difficulties seemed to have a charm for him, by the opportunities they afforded of displaying the energies of his soul.
With these qualities he combined a versatility of talent usually found only in softer and more flexible characters. Though bred in the cloister, he distinguished himself both in the cabinet and the camp. For the latter, indeed, so repugnant to his regular profession, he had a natural genius, according to the testimony of his biographer; and he evinced his relish for it by declaring, that “ the smell of gunpowder was more grateful to him than the sweetest perfume of Arabia.”—PRESCOTT's Ferdinand and Isabella. Died 1859.
PEACE OF RYSWICK, 1697. In every part of the kingdom where the peace was proclaimed, the general sentiment was manifested by banquets, pageants, loyal healths, salutes, beating of drums, blowing of trumpets, breaking up of hogsheads. At some places the population, of its own accord, repaired to the churches to give thanks. At others processions of girls, clad all in white, and crowned with laurels, carried banners inscribed with “God bless King William !” At every county town a long cavalcade of the principal gentlemen, from a circle of miles, escorted the mayor to the market cross. Nor was one holiday enough for the expression of so much joy. On the 4th of November, the anniversary of the king's birth, and on the 5th, the anniversary of his landing at Torbay, the bell-ringing, the shouting, and the illuminations, were renewed both in London and all over the country.
There was, indeed, reason for joy and thankfulness. England had passed through severe trials, and had come forth renewed in health and vigour. Ten years before, it had seemed that both her liberty and her independence were no more. Her liberty she had vindicated by a just, necessary revolution. Her independence she had reconquered by a not less just and necessary war. She had successfully defended the order of things established by the Bill of Rights against the mighty monarchy of France, against the aboriginal population of Ireland, against the avowed hostility of the non-jurors, against the more dangerous hostility of traitors, who were ready to take any oath, and whom no oath could bind.
Her open enemies had been victorious on many fields of battle. Her secret enemies had commanded her fleets and armies, had been in charge of her arsenals, had ministered at her altars, had taught at her universities, had swarmed in her public offices, had sat in her parliament, had bowed and fawned in the bedchamber of her king. More than once it
had seemed impossible that anything could avert a restoration which would inevitably have been followed, first by proscriptions and confiscations, by the violation of fundamental laws, and the persecution of the established religion, and then by a third rising up of the nation against that House which two depositions and two banishments had only made more obstinate in evil. To the dangers of war and the dangers of treason had recently been added the dangers of a terrible financial and commercial crisis.
But all those dangers were over. There was peace abroad and at home. The kingdom, after many years of ignominious vassalage, had resumed its ancient place in the first rank of European powers. Many signs justified the hope that the Revolution of 1688 would be our last Revolution. The ancient constitution was adapting itself, by a natural, a gradual, a peaceful development, to the wants of a modern society. Already freedom of conscience and freedom of discussion existed to an extent unknown in any preceding age. The currency had been restored. Public credit had been re-established. Trade had revived. The Exchequer was overflowing. There was a sense of relief everywhere, from the Royal Exchange to the most secluded hamlets among the mountains of Wales and the fens of Lincolnshire. The ploughmen, the shepherds, the miners of the Northumbrian coalpits, the artisans who toiled at the looms of Norwich and the anvils of Birmingham, felt the change, without understanding it; and the cheerful bustle in every seaport and every market town indicated, nor obscurely, the commencement of a happier age.—MACAULAY. Died 1859.
WILLIAM III. The King meanwhile was sinking fast. Albemarle had arrived at Kensington from the Hague, exhausted by rapid travelling. His master kindly bade him go to rest for some