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prejudices, 'strong, but unfruitful, devon
? tion; intolerant fierceness; compassio
BOSWELL CONTINUED. inge 'onate munificence, and corroding envy. Mr. Boswell lately passed a few dars I was fearful that Mr. Boswell's personal in Lichfield. I did not find him quite attachinent would have scrupled to throw so candid and ingenuous on the subject in those dark shades which truth cum. of Johnson, as I had hoped from the mands should be employed in drawing style of his letters. Ile aliected to disthe Johnsonian portrait; but these fears tinguish in the despot's favour, between are considerably dissipated by the style envy, and literary jealousy. I main. of Mr. Boswell's acknowledgments for tained, that it was a sophistic distinction the materials I had sent him, and for the without a real difference. Mr. Boswell perfect impartiality with wbich I had urged the unlikelihood that he, who had spoken of 'Jobpson's virtues and faults. established his own fame on other ground He desires I will send him the minutes I than that of poetry, should envy poetic made at the time of that, as he justly reputation, especially where it was postcalls it, tremendous conversation at humous; and seemed to believe that his Dilly's, between you and him, on the injustice to Milton, Prior, Gray, Collins. subject of Miss 'Harry's commencing &c. proceeded from real want of taste quaker. Boswell bad so often spoke to for the higher orders of verse, his judga me, with regret, over the ferocious, rea- ment being too rigidly severe to relish sonless, and unchristian, violence of his the enthusiasms of imagination. idol tliat night, it looks impartial beyond Affection is apt to start from the ima my hopes, that he requests me to arrange partiality of calling faults by their proper it. I bad omitted to send it in the first naines. Mr. Boswell -soon after, unacollection. from my hopelessness that wares, observed that Johnson had been Mr. Boswell would insert it in his life of galled by David Garrick's instant gucthe Colossus. Time may have worn cess, and long eclat, who had 'set' sait away those deep-indented lines of bigot with himself on the sea of public life: 'fierceness from the memory of the bio. that he took an aversion to him on that grapher, and the hand of affection may account; that it was a little cruel in the not be firm enough to resolve upon en great man not once to name David Gargraving them.
rick in his preface to Shakespeare! and O! yes, as you observe, dreadful were base, said I, as well as unkind. Garthe horrors which attended poor Johnrick! who had restored thať transcendent son's dying state, His religion was cer, author to the taste of the public, after it tainly not of that nature which 'sheds had recreantly and long receded from comfort on the death.bed pillow. I be him; especially as this restorer had been lieve his faith was sincere, and therefore the companion of his youth. He was could not fail to reproach bis heart, which galled by Garrick's prosperity, rejoined had swelled with pride, envy, and hatred, Mr. Boswell. Ah! said I, you now, through the whole course of his existence. unawares, cede to my position. * ' If thie But religious feeling, on which you lay so author of the Rambler could stoop to great a stress, was not the desideratum in envy a player, for the hasty splendour of Johnson's virtue. He was no cold mo. a reputation, which, compared to his ralist; it was obedience, meekness, and own, however that might, for some time, universal benevolence, whose absence be hid in the night of obscurity, must, ili from his heart, driven away by the turn the end, prove as the meteor of an hour bulent fierceness and jealousy of his un- to the permanent light of the san, it bridled passions, filled with so much hor. cannot be doubted, but his injustice to for the darkness of the grave. Those Milton, Gray, Collins, Prior, &c. pro. glowing aspirations in religion, which are ceeding from the saine cause, produced termed enthusiasm, cannot be rationally that levelling system of criticism, " which considered as a test of its truth. Every lifts the mean, and lays the mighty Inw." religion has had its martyrs. I verily Mr. Boswell's comment upon this obsers believe Johnson would have stood that vation was, that dissenting shake of the trial for a system to whose precepts he head, to which folk are reduced, when yet disdained to bend his proud and they will not be convinced, yet find their stubborn heart. How different from his stores of defence exhausted. was the death-bed of that sweet exccl- Mr. B. confessed his idea that Jobnson lence, whom he abused at Dilly's, by the was a Roman Catholic in his heart. I Dame of the "odious werch!"
have heard him, said he, uniformly de
e beard him, said hey
fend the cruel executions of that dark I could fancy him saying to the fai bigor, Queen Mary.
author, “ You had better have called me
the first Whis, Madam, the father of the NANNAJI MORE..
tribe, who got kicked out of ilearen for • Miss More's uvems have spirit and his republican principles.” To the lauls renius, but contain an affected and pe- president herself, I fancy the cynic wouli dantic display of knowledge and erudi- not now, were he living, be the most tion, especially the Bas bleu. In the welcome guest, since the publicatiou of Florio we find many brilliant passages; Mr. Bostrell's Tour. Miss More puis many just and striking observations, and him to hed to little David. Their mutual some adınirable portraits in satiric traits. opiates are pretty powerful, else liet Not Havley himself has drawn a modern quondain friend, Garrick, would not bean better. Florio is the rival of Filii- thank her for his companion ;-but mis gree, in the Triumphis of Temper, with sery, matrimony, and mortality, make suficient difference to avert the charge strange bed-fellows... of plagiarism from the female author; but the versification in Florio is, at
THE FRENCII REVOLUTIOX. times, strangely in harmonious, often So France has dipt her lilies jo the alliterating with the bardest consonants, living streams of American freedom, and and sometimes disgraced by vulgarisın: bids her sons be slaves no longer. In instances,
such a contest, the vilai sluices must be "For face, no mortal cou'd resist her." wastefully opened--but few English And,
hearts, I hope, there are, that do no “He felt not Celia's powers of face." wish victory may sit upon tlie swords that These face-expressions put me in mind freedom has unsheathed. of an awkward pedantic youth, unce rewdent, for a little time, at Lichfield. He
MOLLY ASTON, was asked how be liked Miss Honora
It is very true, as you obserre, John Sneyd. “Almighty powers !" replied
son appears much more 'amiable as a the oddity, “I could not have conceived
domestic man, in his letters to Mrs
1 Thrale, than in any other memorial that she had half the face she has !" Honora was finely rallied about this in
which has been given us of his life and puted plenitude of face. The oval ele.
manners; but that was owing to the care
with which Mrs. Piozzi weeded them of gance of its delicate and beauteous con
the prejudiced and inalevole il passages lour, made the exclamation trebly ab. surd. Ilow could Miss More so apply a
s on characters, perhaps much mort phrase, always expressive of efrontery?
, essentially worthy than himself, were and how could so learned a lady suffer
they to be tried by the rules of Chrisian
charity. the pleonasm of the following line to
I do not think with you, rhat
his ungrateful virulence against Mrs. escape her pen?
Thrale, in her inarrying Piozzi, aros “With truth to mingle fables feign'd."
froin bis indignation against her on his The character of Celia is pretty, but in deceased friend's account. Mr. Boswell the satirical strokes lie all the genius of told me Johnson wished and expected to the work.
have married her himself. You ask who As for the Bas bleu..You have heard the Molly Aston was, whom those let. the sigh after the attainment of other ters mention with such passionate tee. Janguages 'with hopeless yearning; yet I derness? Mr. Walmsley, my fatber's bad rather be ignorant of thein, as I am, predecessor in this house, was, as you if I thought their acquisition would induce have heard, Solmson's Mocænas, and me to clap my wings and crow in Greek, this lady, his wife's sister, a daughter of Latin, and French, through the course of Sir Thomas Aston, a wit, a beauty, and a poem which ouglit to have been written a toast. Johnson was always Paneving in an unaffected and unmingled English. bimself in love with soine princess or I am diverted with its eulogies on Gar- other. His wife's daughter, Lucy PorTick, Mason, and Johnson, who all three ter, so often mentioned in those lertes, hated each other so heartily. Not very was his first love, when he was a schoolpleasantly, I trow, would the two former boy, under my grandfather, ri clergvrant, have sat in the presence of Old Cato, as vicar of St. Mary's, and master of the this poem oddly terms the arrogant John- free-school, which, by his scholastit ebie son, surrounded by the worshipful and licy, was high in fame, and thringer with worshipping Blue Stocking. lad the pupils, from some of the first genele. cynic lived to hear bis Whig-title, Cato, men's families in this and the adjointng
countics. To the free-school the boys of him for the literary consequence his resie the city bad a right to come, but every dence at Streatham threw around lier ·body knows how superficial, in general, The rich, the proud, and titled literati, is unpaid instruction. However, my would not have sought Johnson in his grandfather, aware of Johoson's genius, dirty garret, nor the wealthy brewer's took the highest pains with hiin, though then uncelebrated wife, without the his parents were poor, and mean in their actual presence, in her salaon d'Apollon, situation, keeping market stalls, as bat. of a votary known to be of the number tle-dore booksellers. Johnson has not of the inspired. had the gratitude once to mention his POLITICAL OPINIONS AND WRITERS, . generous master, in any of bis writings; You inquire after ny opinions on the but all this is foreign to your inquiries, momentous event, which draws to itself who Miss Molly Aston was, and at what the ansious eyes of all Europe. Mine period is A.me for her cominenced? It did not coldly behold a great nation was during those school-days, when the emancipating itself from a tyrannous go. reputation of Johnson's talents, and ra. vernment but I soon began to apprepid progress in the classics, induced the hend that its deliverers were pushing the boble-minded Walmsley to endure, at levelling principle into extremes more his elegant table, the low-born squalid fatal to civilized liberty than even an aryouth-here that he suffered bim and bitrary monarchy, with all its train of Garrick to “inp their eagle wings," a evils. I read II. Williamıs's interesting delighted spectator and auditor of their letters from France. They do not at efforts. It was here that Miss Molly tempt to reason, they only paint, and Aston was frequently a visitor in the fa- shew the illimined side of the prospect, mily of her brother-in-law, and probably My own enthusiasın, which apprehension amused herself with the uncouth adora. had damped, rekindied beneath the glow tions of the learned, though dirty strip- of her feelings and imagination-but not Jing, whose mean appearance was over. into a firmi dependence that Franice poslooked, because of the genius and know. sessed a band of leaders, sufficiently ledge that blazed through him; though exempted from selfish ambition, to prowith “umbered flatnes," from constitu- mote the success and felicity of a nieve lignal melancholy and spleen. Lucy and hazardous experiment; in which all Porter, whose visit to Lichheld had been the links were broken in that great but for a few weeks, was then gone back chain of subordination which binds to to her parents at Birmingham, and the each other the various orders of existence, brighter Molly Aston becarne the Laura Mr. Burke's book then caine before of our Petrarch. Fired, however, at me and though I read, with contempt, length, with ideal love, and incapable of this nonsensical quixotism about the inspiring mutual inclinations in the young Queen of France-though I saw, with and lively, he married, at twenty-three, indignation, the apostate whig labouring the mother of his Lucy, and went to seek to overturn the principles which produced his fortune in London. She had Lorne the revolution, and to prove a king of an indifferent character, during the life England's right to reign in despite of the of her first husband. He died insolvent, wills of his subjects, yet I saw also a sysleaving his three grown-up children, de tem of order and polity, elucidated and pendent on the bounty of his rich bache- rendered interesting by every appeal to for brother in London, who left them the affections of the human bosom; and largely, but would never do any thing for it, appeared to me more consonant 10 the worthless widow, who had married human nature, as it is, and less injurious " the literary cub," as he used to call to the public safety, than the levelling , bim. She lived thirty years with John extreme into whicli France has rushed. son; if shuddering, half-fainished, in an Depending that the persuasive orator author's garret, could be called living would not dare to misrepresent facts, I
During her life, the fair and learned thought there was every thing to fear fur devotee, Miss H. Boothby, in the wane France, and much to detest in her co. of her youth, a woman of family and gen- ercive circulation of the assignats, and teel fortune, encouraged him to resuine in the wantquly tyrannous restraints she his Platonisms. After the death of this laid upon her monarch.. . wife, and this spiritualized mistress, Mrs. Sir Brooke Boothhy's ingenious and * Thrale took him up. He loved her for eloquent reply in Burke, was the first her wit, her beauty, her luxurious table, answer I'perused. It was with pleasure her coach, and her library; and she loved that I saw hiin clearly refuting his oppo.
neut's nent's asserted legality of our king's claim also was so here. Yet, opon the whole, to die crown, independent of the suf. I am inclined to fear, that more diffusire frages of his people; but it left my ap- misery and national inconsequence mail prehensions of Gallic danger in full force. be the result of that extreine to wluch Not denying the truth of the circum- they are pushing the levelling priociple, stances by which Burke seems to prove than from the system, bad as it was that danger, Sir Brooke appears to admic which they have destroyed. Alter all, its existence.
I think modestly, and with no preteoce As to the anti-sophist, Priestley, I dis to decision. Though the French resoe like bis disingenuous manœuvrings about lution is at present too big with dangar Christianity too much to respect his opi- to admit a desire, in any real well-wisher nions on any subject, so I did not read his to this country, that she should cousider reply to Burke.
it as her model;-yét I wish the French But I read Payne's last work, and saw may prove a pattern, hereafier, of public him divest the oratoric renegade of all virtue and public happiness, to the whole pretensions to candour and fair statement, world. Politics never engrossed much of by proving that he had misrepresented my attention, convinced some facts, and kept back ochers with all “ In every government, though terrors reign, the finesse of a courtly polilician. I Though tyrant kings, or tyrant laws restria, read in Payne that declaration of the How small, of all that human hearts endure, rights of maii, upon which a perfect code That part which laws, or kings, can cause *
cure." of laws, and a perfect form of government might be established, if 'human BOSWELL'S LIFE OF JOIINSON. nature was disinterested, wise, and vir. As yer, I have read only the first tuous. Not being any of these things, lume of Boswell's Life of Johnson. What but the reverse of them all, I do not be. I foresaw has happened. That ingenious lieve those who have obtained power in pencil, which so well folhlled the bio France will respect its maxims enough to graphic duty, and painted the despot govern themselves by them; enough to exactly as he was, when roaming the prevent the people from repenting that lonely Hebrides, has, at the impolse of they fled from the throne to petty tyrants, terror, been exchanged for a more glow. This author's style is not elegant, or at ing one; and, in this work, almost every all possesses equal force with his matter thing is kept back which could give on. yet, at intervals, he shows that he can brage to Johoson's idolaters, by justly command a fine one,
displaying the darker, as well as fairer, The Lessons lo a Young Prince are sides of the medal, All, howerer, but amongst the finest and most spirited his idolaters, must detest the ungrateful compositions of the age. Their style is duplicity proved upon him, when we perfect. It has all the beauty and anie find him speaking with slight, bordering mation of Burke's, with more perspicuity, upon conteinpt, of the then Mrs. Thrale, Their author is a miracle, a political in the zenith of his intimacy with her: writer without party-prejudice. My opi- Mr. Boswell was not aware, that imparnions almost always met his as I read; tiality would compare wbat he said of particularly when he traces to its source her, with what he said to her. "To the king's popularity, viz. the dread of hear you," says he, in his lefters to seeing a needy, rapacious, and unprinci- that lady,“ is to hear wisdom; to pled faction govern the nation, with a see you is to see virtue.” What des more oppressive hand than our present picable flattery was that, if he really be. rulers. One of them has pulled off his lieved the stores of her mind were trivial. masque of patriotism to get into power and that she had no truth? while, if by the king's favour; and the rest would conscious that these imputations were usfollow his exainple, could they first get just, his heart was at once thankless and power,
malevolently false. Such, I confess, I admire the French for taking the pri- amidst all his gloomy piety, I always vilege of making war with other nations thought it. That conviction has not reout of the hands of kings and ininisters.. ceded beneath the contempt of your I wish it was so bere--but surely they charming friend, and of Mrs. Montague, have violated justice most' tyrannically Miss Seward, misled by the massacres and by their invasion of property, and the horrors of the revolution, afterwards became confiscation of hereditary estates. As an alarmist, and circulated among ber friends to the church-lands, their being reduced the vilest libels against the supporters of pabo into moderation, is well. I wish ubat lic liberty in England!
which his biographer haş so indiscreetly, where they may be quiet, or to France, so impolicely, recorded; ikur beneath the where their energies may have ample lying assertion, that Gray was a dull fel scope; but let them not attempt to muddy low, and that there are but eight good the at present silver currents of our prus lines in all his poetry. I hear Mason perity, fares no belter in the second volume. I do not yet wish that the blood-thirsty Dark and envious calumniator!
invaders of unhappy France may succeed; I both blame Mr. Boswell, and won nor do I at all apprehend that they cam der at him for the wanton, because un, be victorious. At the king's deposition necessary, inroads which a number of I felt very indignant; but if, as it now those records must make upon the feel, seeins to appear, lie was secretly plouing mgs of many. But for them, his work with the invaders, he deserves his late, had been of great value indeed. Enter, and justifies those who have alijured hiin, taining, in the first degree, it certainly Surely we shall have the wisdom to per: is; and, with the inost cominendable sist in our neutrality. Ill as the French precision, exhibits the cvents of his life have, in many respects, acied, distracted through all their series and changes. It as are their councils, and iinpoleng as ac contaios a prodigious inass of colloquial present seem their Jaws, there is danger wit and humour, which were certainly that the worst consequences would enous tarrivalled. Let it, however, bę remein- to us should we arm against them; that bered, chat, to produce their eclipsing the contagion of ideal liberty might 10+ and resistless power, many things com fect our troops, as it has insected those bined, which a wise and generous mind of the Austrians and PrussiansPaine's would not, for its own peace and health, pernicious and impossible system of consent to feel, even to possess that uns equal riglits, is calculated to captivate equalled talent; viz. spleen, envy, boundand dazzle the vulgar; to make their less laughtiness, and utter callousness to spurn the restraints of legislation, and to all the mental sensibilities of others. I spread anarchy, murder, and ruin, urec a'n of St. Paul's mind, who says, where the earth. these things are, nor alms nor prayers a constitute goodness.
MAS. DELANY AND DR. PARR. "Say thou, whose thoughts at humble fame
In this interesting scene of friendship,
literature, and the arts, I have been ile ...repine, Shall Johnson's wit with Johnson's spleen be
troduced to that intellectual laminary, thing?"
Dr. Parr, and to the celebrated horius siccus of Mrs. Delany, contained in ten
imgiense folios, each enriched with an "MRS. KNOWLES.
hundred Aoral plants, representing, in Mrs. Knowles, the witty and the elo. cut paper, of infinitely various dyes, the quent, was amongst us, on a week's visi', finest huwers of our own and every other since you left L chlield. She marie climate, from the best speciinens that fiaming eulogiums upon French anarchy, the field, the garden, the greenhouse, and which she calls freedom, and uttered to the conservatory, could furnish; and less vehement philippics against every with a fidelity and sividness of colouring, thing which pertains to monarchy. For which shanes the needle and the pencil. snyself, I have ever loved and venerated The moss, the filins, the farina, every, the cause of liberty; and wished everythe winulest, palt, is represented wille restraint upon power which can be con- inatchless delicacy. It was at the age sistent with that order, and those links of seventy-five that this prodigy of female of subordination which 'hind, in one genius invented her ari, and gave it that agreeing whole, the necessarily various last perfection which makes imitation degrees and employments of civilizert hopeless, . Always a fine painter, and not Jile; but I every day grow more and ignorant of ihe arts of chemistry, she her. more sick of that mischievous oratory self dyed her papers from whence the which ferments and diffuses tbe spirit of new creation arose. Or this astonishing sedition. In the name of peace and work Dr. Darwin has given a most erro. comfort, let those who are dissatisfied 'neous description in his splendid poen. with a government, in which their lives llc ought not to have taken such a liberty. and properties are secure, which is great la represents Mrs. Delany as a mere ar. and revered in the eyes of every neigh Lificial fower-maker, using wires and wax, bouring nation ; against which no sword js.draww, and to whose commerce every: • The seat of Court Dewes, esg, acar port is open; let thein -Co Atnerica, Stratford-upon-Avon A . MONTHLY Mag, No. 215.