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special arrangements to ensure that the young fellow should live with congenial comrades, and that he should enjoy all possible facilities, which the space and the routine of a man-of-war would permit, for learning the theory of his profession. Cartwright, (as was likely to happen with Pitt for war minister, and Anson for First Lord of the Admiralty,) soon had a trial of that profession in its most practical and exciting shape. At the battle in Quiberon Bay he had the care of four guns on the lower deck; and, out of his twenty-six men, thirteen were swept down by one discharge. Lord Howe had the adversary's flag-ship, and two of her consorts, upon him at one and the same moment; and John Cartwright informed his friends at home that, more than once in the course of the engagement, he expected little less than to be diving for French cockles. When Howe was selected by Hawke to lead an attack on those ships of the enemy which had run for safety into the Vilaine river, Cartwright was one of the three officers who accompanied his Lordship in the boats. The Magnanime was kept at sea for the best part of two busy years, until the crew had to be at the pumps during the whole of every watch. At length Howe surrendered the command, and was succeeded by a very different kind of officer;2 and the single thought of the young lieutenant was henceforward to attain such a proficiency in seamanship as
1 Until the rules of spotless cleanliness and careful stowage, which were initiated by Lord St. Vincent and perfected by Lord Nelson, had been established throughout the British navy, a seventy-four gun ship, with her six hundred men between decks, was neither an abode of comfort, nor the place for quiet and uninterrupted studies. Dr. Johnson, whose standard of tidiness was not exacting, often quoted his stay on board a ship in Plymouth Sound as an experience which reconciled him to any, and all, the drawbacks incidental to life on shore. “When you look down," he said, “ from the quarter-deck to the space below, you see the utmost extremity of human misery; such crowding, such filth, such stench."
2 It would be more profitable, (so Cartwright declared) to be taken prisoner for a few months, and to have the advantage of learning to fence and talk French, than to serve under a captain who lingered about wherever he could get fresh meat and syllabubs, and who missed opportunities for a fight "the loss of which would make a parson swear.”
would render him worthy of his luck if ever the day came for him to sail with Howe once more.1
That day arrived at last; and a sad day it was for John Cartwright. In February 1776 Lord Howe was appointed to the American station ; and he forthwith invited Cartwright to call at his house in Grafton Street, and earnestly pressed him to embark on board the flag-ship.2 Cartwright, too deeply moved to argue with a patron whom he almost worshipped, intimated that he was unable to accept the offer, and placed in the Admiral's hands a letter which explained the reason of his decision; and Lord Howe in reply acknowledged, mournfully enough, that opinions in politics, on points of such national moment as the differences subsisting between England and America, should be treated like opinions in religion, wherein everyone was at liberty to regulate his conduct by those ideas which he had adopted upon due reflection and enquiry 3 Cartwright continued to reside in his native county, respected and loved by young and old. He was known in the hunting-field for a fine horseman, who rode with the courage of a sailor; and he passed in the Militia for a most just and kind, but a very strict, officer, who made his battalion, which had been much neglected, into an example for discipline and organisation. His value was recognised, and his friendship sought, by the General in command of the district, the Lord Percy who helped to win the day at Fort Washington, and who saved as much of it as could be saved at Lexington. About a twelvemonth after he had refused to serve against the colonists, Major Cartwright received the freedom of the town of Nottingham; a significant indication of the views prevailing in a community
1 Life and Correspondence of Major Cartwright : London, 1826; Vol. I., pages 8 to 29.
a Cartwright was well aware of the chance which he was losing. Lord Howe, (so he told his friends,) now commanded more ships than had ever fallen to the lot of one man since the defeat of the Spanish Armada, so that it would be “the fairest field for rapid promotion that could possibly be imagined."
3 Life and Correspondence of Major Cartwright : Vol. I., pages 72 to 81.
which had the Commander-in-Chief of the Royal Army in America for a parliamentary representative.
It has happened again and again that, when a nation is engaged in serious hostilities, the partisans of peace have been exposed to humiliating, and sometimes very unmerciful, treatment from outbreaks of popular violence. But opponents of the American war had in this respect very little to complain about, if we may judge by the noise made over some very mild instances of persecution which were loudly advertised, and vociferously rebuked, by the chorus of Whig journalists. After the battle of Long Island, (so their story went,) preparations had been made to illuminate Manchester whenever the tidings arrived that New York was taken. One of the citizens put out a notice that he, for his part, had no intention of joining in the demonstration; and that, if his windows were broken, informations would be lodged against the offenders. Thereupon a certain Reverend Doctor was said to have transmitted a copy of the notice to one of the Secretaries of State, with the expectation that "the writer would be immured in Newgate, and that he himself would be complimented with the first vacant Bishopric;” neither of which consequences, so far as history records, came to pass. Again, it was alleged by the Opposition newspapers that the Jacobites in the town of Derby, who toasted the Stuarts kneeling, had celebrated the successes of the Royal Army in America with a banquet where they drank confusion to the Whig corporation; and the ministerialists of Taunton were accused of having taken a liberty with the Parish Church
1 Among the officers who objected to serve in America some, as may well be conceived, failed to express their disinclination in terms which satished the taste of a military superior. “For the safety of the Service I must recommend that Major Norris, of the 27th Regiment, may have leave to sell. He came to me, and found fault with this most just and necessary war his Majesty is obliged to make against his rebellious subjects. When I would have interrupted him, he thundered out a hundred Greek lines from Homer. He then talked to me out of Plutarch's Lives. In brief, my Lord, he convinced me that he will be better out of the King's service than in it.” General Irwin to Earl Harcourt, September 1, 1775.
by ringing the bells in honour of Howe's victory on the Brandy wine. When such trumpery occurrences were minutely narrated, and solemnly adduced against the Tories as proofs of insolence and outrage, their political adversaries must have been very hard put to it in order to find a real grievance; and it must have been seldom indeed that any friend of America, in any city of England, was harshly or disrespectfully used by those among his neighbours who belonged to the war party.
The story of a disturbance, which took place on the reception of the news of Lexington, rather tends to suggest that the idler and less responsible section of our population was in sympathy with the colonists. On an evening in August 1775, a party of scapegraces smashed the lamps at Vauxhall; pulled the door of the Rotunda off its hinges; stormed the Throne of Orpheus, and ejected the musicians who occupied it; and chased out of the gardens the whole staff of the establishment, together with all the constables, calling out that they themselves were the Provincials beating the Regulars. That, for some years to come, was the only riot in which civilians were concerned. On other occasions the most effective violators of public order appear to have been subalterns in the army. At Lincoln Lieutenant Macintosh, of the Sixty-ninth Regiment, entered a printshop, took from the window a picture of General Putnam, tore it in pieces, and then paid for it across the counter. Soon afterwards Macintosh came back again, destroyed another picture without giving compensation, and swore that next time he would run his sword through the panes of the shopfront. On the Monday following some other officers, (mistaking for an enemy one who, in effect, if not in intention, was among England's most serviceable allies,) cut the head out of an engraving of General Charles Lee, and threatened that, if the tradesman did not mend his ways, the soldiers should be ordered to pull down his house.
The proceeding was a boyish ebullition of military loyalty, pardonable in the eyes of any fair man who
himself had worn a uniform when he was one-andtwenty ; but Whig scribes, who saw deep into every milestone on the road from Edinburgh to London, cited it as a proof that a Scotchman might insult English citizens with impunity. If officers, (it was said,) had behaved with such turbulence and want of breeding in the good old King's reign, they would have been broke, or, at the least, would have received a public reprimand at the head of the regiment; but now, with Lord Bute behind the Throne, no colonel in the army would dare to censure a lieutenant whose name showed that he came from Inverness. These enormities, (as the Opposition journalist styled them,) afforded so many additional indications that the "only path to preferment was by trampling upon law, and turning into ridicule the rights and privileges of the people.” It undoubtedly was the right and privilege of a shopkeeper to exhibit the portraits of American generals as popular heroes; but it was a right which he would have been very cautious indeed of exercising if any large proportion of his neighbours had been ardent supporters of the war. That such, however, was the case either in the town of Lincoln, or generally throughout England, is disproved by certain considerations the significance of which it is not easy to deny.
In time of war a political agitation, - especially one that is aimed against institutions and abuses on the continuance of which the supremacy of the party in power depends, - is almost certainly doomed to languish and to fail; and that such an agitation should be too insignificant for serious notice may well be the best thing which could happen for its promoters. During the great war with France, towards the close of the eighteenth century, the bolder advocates of parliamentary reform were sometimes rabbled by mobs, and sometimes punished in the law-courts with exemplary severity; whereas twenty years previously, all the while that our armies were fighting Washington in America, the art of Constitutional agitation at home was brought to a perfec