Abbildungen der Seite
PDF

»j if it had continued its full time in its silken Cmc. Jan. 1811. J. M. Flindall.

For the Monthly Magazine.

fouBSAL of' a recent Voyage to Cadiz,

{Continuedfrom vol. SO, f. 501.)

January 25,1809.

1 SHALL never hare done sayin^somethini; about churches: besides the new cathedral, As it is called, which I described to you the other day, there is another, wherein service is regularly performed. The building is very gloomy, rather small, and excepting the principal f nuance, very little of the outside is to be seen. The door-way is loaded with a variety of sculptured marble, coats of arms, cherubs, &c. The high altar is, as usual, dazzling with gilded ornaments, and the waUscrowded with pictured saints, hanging in darkness.

The occasiou of my seeing it to-day, arose from the circumstance of paying funeral honours to the memory of the late president of the Junta, Count Florida Blanca. The ceremony is called a Junction, a term applied by the Spaniards to almost every public entertainment,

■ and answers to the French spectacle. This Junction was attended by the

.governor, the members of the Junta, the magistrates of the city, the heads of the various convents, foreign ambassadors, consuls, eve. the officer* of the army and marine, several British naval and military officers, merchants, eve. who met at the town-hall, and paraded through the streets, which were lined by the volunteers, who stood with their arms reversed. The crowd of people was immense, the windows and balconies were filled with beautiful females; but the greatest order and silence prevailed, and added to the solemnity of the occasion.

On entering the church, 1 was struck with the vast blaze of light caused by an innumerable quantity of large wax Jlam

• lieaux in massy silver and gold candlesticks, some of them beiug eight or more feet in iieighl; which were burning at the altar,

-and around a temporary pyramidal (Document, the front of which bore an inscription descriptive of the character of the count.

The service was chauntcd, accompanied by very sublime music on an or£un, and a numerous orchestra of vocal and instrumental performers, winch lasted three hours without the least intermission: during (Ins time, at intervals, the

. frail* were toiled :u»4 the discharge of

artillery and musketry. There appeared to be a deal of piety mingled with the ceremony, and numberless were the times that the congregation fell on their knees, muttered prayers, and counted their suing of beads. Nearly at the close of the service I was surprised to observe a man busily delivering to certain persons one of those large wax flambeaux, to be held lighted in the ha»d, lie distributed perhaps a hundred or more to the convivndos or guests who were the most distinguished in the procession; when Iiq had done, the ministeis advanced from the altar to the budy of the church, and chaunted the requiem for the dead, The flambeaux were then fetched, and the people retired, 1 believe heartily glad to be released from so tedious a ceremony.

The death of the count had been formally noticed by the firing of minuteguns for several days after his demise, which was on the 30th of the last month. He was a man universally esteemed, but his great age of eighty-two years had naturally rendered him incapable of supporting the fatigues and troubles attending the important office he had just held as-president of the Supreme Junta; but as a name only has often great weight at the head of large assemblies, and the count being so highly venerated by the court party, he was, at the moment, considered to be a fit person for their leader.

The precipitate movement of the Supreme Junta in the last month from Madrid to Aranjuez, their subsequent retreat, and temporary dispersion, before the central Junta at Seville could resume its sitting, produced such an effect on the count as to hasten his death.

The uncertainty of their movements was then so great at this place, that the governor published an address to the people, saying that he was without intelligence of their residence, and that he did not, literally, know where to find them; and our consul had not for twelve days received any advices from tlie English ambassador, nor did be know where hv was. Such was the scattered confusion among the protectors of this country!

I was informed that Spain has scarcely to boast of another man who applied himself so much for the good of his country as did Count Florida Blanca: he seemed to wish tu place it on a footing with the other nations of Europe, in respect to\ the happiness of the people, by the just adiuuuatraiiou of the laws, and by the encouragement

eouragrment of learning. He was also the chief means of making the few good roads that I am told are in Spain; aid be endeavoured to provide more accomrhodatioa to the traveller nt the inns or ▼entas, than which worse cannot be found in Europe.

I will extract from the Seville Gazette, which 1 have received since I began this, • few paragraphs more desciipuvs of his character; it will give you an idea of Spanish newspaper biography. "The study and exercise of jurisprudence, in which he shewed his talents and exquisite erudition, opened to him a career of public employment, and the deserved lame which he attained. His name, accompanied every day by new honours acquired in the delicate undertakings of the crown, drew him from the narrow limits of the tribunal; and he was appointed by the wisechoiceof Charles III. to be minister plenipotentiary to the court of Rome, where his name and his politics will ever be indelibly established. The king called him from thence to be liis first secretary of state, and to him are indebted the arts, sciences, industry, and all the branches of public felicity which his beneficent hand had erected, mnd which twenty years of neglect, disorders, and anti-national tyranny, could not destroy. The envy of the man, who from a favourite became a despot, drove him from the court; but the count showed that fortitude could not be separated from wisdom. Retired, but not forgotten, the count lived until the necessity of the monarchy and a national voice called him to Aranjuez to form the Supreme Central Junta, of which he was chosen president. In this elevated situation, be dedicated his care, his teal, and his patriotism, which the weight of his years could not extinguish, to consolidate the national representation, which was to save the country from the invasion of the tyrant, and from the consequences of anarchy, more powerful and terrible than his arms. In Seville is his tomb, and with it remains the memory of the affectionate regards with which he left bis afflicted country, and the deceitful world."

January ?8, 1809.

This morning I had n cruise in the hay, and visited Port St. Mary, which is eight miles across. My friend F——— accompanied me, but we had a tedious passage. The morning was delightfully fine and the wind fair, (Fahrenheit was 66° at eight o'clock); but when we got about

halfway over, the atmosphere became suddenly clouded, it rained a torrent, and the wind opposed us. The oars were then used until we came near soma breakers, when all at once the boatmen ceased rowing, folded their arms, and i were silent. It was explained te us that at this moment we were crossing the bar, which is always considered dangerous to pass, and that the sailors were praying, according to invariable custem, when they get on it. I own I did not like this suspension of labour, for the breakers were foaming around us; and instead of the boatmen being careful to avoid accident, it should seem that by their neglect they rather sought for it.

The English sailors often have a ducking when they go to Port St. Mary for water; owing, no douht, to their not being acquainted with the bar; and it has happened often since I have been here; particularly the other day, when

Captain , of the —— frigate, was

conveying home some Spanish ladies whom he had entertained on board his ship; his boat struck on the bar, it was upset, and the cockswain was drowned. The captain, and his fair companions, were saved by the sailors, and some boast that put oil'from the shore, and landed amid the smiles of the Spaniards, who imputed this circumstance to heresy.

We entered the town by a flight of wooden steps, where there is a barrier attended by priests and oftjeers, who examine passports and search luggage: wo paid a small fee, and went on. We were soon surrounded by crowds of beggars; and we could easily admit their importunities when we had walked through the town.

Although a governor resides there, and it is an important place, being the first that communicates immediately with the interior from Cadiz, it is a most wretched dirty town, and almost deserted by tire male inhabitants; greopes of men, women, and children, were basking in the sun in filth and misery.

The surrounding country is rather picturesque, and interspersed with the verdure of the olive and the fir; quantities of vegetables and fruit are produced in the neighbourhood for the supply of Cadiz; but it has no manufactures. Here is an amphitheatre for the bull-fight, a town.linll,(a large building of n mean appearance) anrf.i convent of Carthusian friars. Tbr.» fraternity is not numerous, there being only about thirty now belonging to the ordar. Their incomeia cousulemUe. considerable, and they are charitable, but the institution is very rigid; they are forbidden to speak to any person, or to each other; they eat no animal food, drink no wine, sleep on straw, and go bare-footed: we need not wonder therefore that they are not more numerous.

We found out an inn, such as it was, and the people knowing we were from Cadiz, flocked around us enquiring for news ? and among other questions, whether we were English or Irish? A postilion, who was in the court, answered for us and said, we were Englishmen bv our countenances, but not Christians! For you must know that the Irish, or those under that name, are more highly respected than the English; the people being carefully taught that all the Irish are catholics. We of course left those sages as soon as we could have something like a room provided for us alone; and which accommodation, dirty enough, we had great difficulty to obtain. We ordered dinner, and were supplied with nearly a dozen dishes or plaies, of different meat, soup, oils, bouiili, fish, fruit, &c. and some good bottled London porter, which is a great rarity here, and costs about 3s. 6d. per bottle; we had a bottle of sherry wine also, and the whole did net cost a dollar each.

The master of the inn told us that the inhabitants were in hourly alarm lest the French prisoners there, who had formed part of Dupont's army, should break from their confinement, and massacre the inhabitants, as they were guarded only by a few volunteers; as had nearly been the case a few days ago at Lebrifa, a town near this, when one hundred and twenty of the Frenchmen were put to

death in the streets by the populace, in consequence of their ill behaviour, and killing the sentry. The interference and activity of the clergy alone restrained them from massacring the whole of the prisoners in confinement; but the people would not at first listen to the priests, and they butchered the French while they were on their knees, unarmed, and beg-* ging for mercy, confounding the innocent with those who were guilty of the tumult. But such is the hatred of the lower classes, at least to the French, and especially when they are sure of victory 1 We left Port St. Mary soon after dinner, rather disappointed with the place^ as from the harbour we were disposed to expect seeing a handsome town, since tlta houses appeared so lofty, large, and neatly white-limed. 1 lie wind had now become contrary as;ain, aud we were; three hours getting buck to Cadiz, where we arrived just in time to save ourselves from a night's lodging on board some friendly ship, as the drum was beating at the barrier, which would have been, closed in a few minutes.

While we were returning, we observed a bustle among some boats in the bay, at a short distance from us; on enquiring the cause of it, our boatine:i coolly replied that two sailors were terminating a dispute with knives; they were lounging at each other from their boats, while ilia, others were looking on; but we could not learn how the affray ended. On my remarking that English sailors would have referred to a more manly method, at least, with their fists instead of to so. cowjirdlv a one as theirs, they said, " Oh, but our method of fighting sooner shews which is the most valiant man."

MEMOIRS AND REMAINS OF EMINENT PERSONS.

•ibhoirso/ the ancient and noble Family of Douglas; with a Biographical SKRTcn of the Life of the late Most

Noble WILLIAM DOUGLAS, LORD D017

Glajs of Ambrctbury in England, Duke

fl/'<JLl,£NSBKERV C«J UtJIl 11IKS, EARL 0/'0LEENSBERRr, MAUCII, IIUGI.ENt&C.

in Swlland, and Kmoiit of Ike most ancient una moat m-lU Older of the

THISTLE.

THE family of Douglas, so long illustrious in the annalsof Scotland, has produced many great warriors and statesmen. Tlif. heart surmounted uith a roi/ul trou.il, assumed as a crest, and (quartered

twice in the arms, proves that in it a subject had allied with the blood of tho reigning monarch; while the double tretsure, granted by Lyon King at Anns^ exactly as it is in the Iliyal Achieve* nient, in consequence of special orders from the sovereign, shews the favour in, which it was held at a latter period. In short, so far as birth and antiquity may be supposed at this enlightened period to convey greatness, I he Douglasses assuredly possess.not oniy a fair claim, but. even high pretensions. In them we behold a long train of illustrious ancestors, distinguished by the highest titles, connected connected with the most noble families in Europe, in consequence of immediate alliances with the greatest houses in England, Scotlnnd, and France; and matched no less than eleven times with the royal house of Stuart. Nor have the sovereigns of these countries been •paring of their honours; for, in addition to a dukedom, marquisate, and earldom, in one portion of the United Kingdom, and a barony-in another, we find them also to have been dukes of Turenne, counts of Longueville, mareschals •f France, &c. &c.

Whether this family originally migrated from the continent, or may be considered as in some rejects indigenous to the soil, is not perliaps exactly known. Certain it is, that it became conspicuous in Scotland so early as 770, exactly two hundred and ninety-six years before the Korman conquest. At that remote period, there was no other mode than that ef the sword to acquire illustration ; arts being then utterly unknown, eloquence unpractised, commerce exhibiting only rude beginnings in the form of an interchange of unwroughc commodities; while" arms alone, that is to say, the law ttf the strongest, afforded any pretension to superiority, er exhibited any claim to reward. It was to this then that the family just alluded to, is indebted for its lands, its titles, and even its name.

Those who may be at the trouble, like the author of this article, to read the ponderous but elegant folio edition of the learned and accomplished Buchanan, edited hy Ruddiman, will there ire that the Douglases occupied the highest stations in the state, were surrounded by a numerous body of followers, and sometimes attained even the rank of protector, under the appellation of Pro-Rex. According to a remote tradition, the original ancestor towards the latter end of the eighth century, having restored the fallen fortunes of his king, by gaining a great victory, was rewarded, in compliance with the custom •fthose times, by a grant of land in the county of Lanark, most probably on the banks of the stream at this day called the Douglas, or Douglas-water, which runs into the Clyde.* Thence we are told was derived the appellation, first of ihebarony, and then, by a very common

* "Post Baroniam est Glottiana, (the Clyde.) Amies iiobiliores fundit: a laeva Avennum, et Duglasum, qui in Glotum •ecuuunt, $K.~Rirvm Sett. lib. i, I.'.', A.

transition, of the name. Thereto, accord'* ing to tlie custom of those early days* was built a castle.*

But to.'proceed to more modern times r in 1388, we find Archibald Douglas denominated, by an eloquent Scottish historian, "Austerus," exhibiting great magnanimity in war, and what was then, and even now is, still more rare, great moderation after victory. He is styled "Duglassiae Comes;" and we are told, that in 1396, when king David, during a convention of the states, at Perth, made the duke of Hothesay his son, and .Robert his brother, dukes, he offeredthis title in vain to the head of the noble family just alluded to. Here follows the text: .

"Hie rani honoris titulus cum ptimum inter Scotos, magno ambitiouis, nullo virtutis increinento est celebrakus i nee cuiquam postea fcliciter cessit. Co~ milem elium Duglussitt rex voluit eodem titulo afficere, sed ilk, ut erat severta, constanter speciem superoacui honorit re» cusavit."

In 1420, we find another earl of Douglas of the name of Archibald, invited into France by the dauphin, by whom he was acknowledged "Dox Tu«ronensis." In 1430, Archibald V. war. shut up in the same castle in the samelake (Loch Leven) where Mary, in atiertimes, happened to be confined; he war at length liberated, and in a republican speech addressed to the chancellor, which is denominated " superba respon- * sio," he denounced both the reigning king and his competitor as tyrants; the elevation of neither of whom could prove serviceable to the state. We afterward* find his successors powerful enough to> contend with the Ilauiiltons, with whom they at length intermarried ; but in 1455, one of them was obliged to take refuge in England. Under James IV. they proved once more triumphant; for the earldom of Angus appears to have been? annexed to their other titles. At a latter period, we perceive the head of this tribe or clan, nobly refusing to swear fidelity to Edward the First, who cast hrm into prison. Tha next heir, soon after fought and overcame a body of English,

■ * "Duglassius, Douglas, cognomen Scoticum in roultas nobjlUsimas et fortiiaimaf familias propagatum, quarum omnium olim pnnceps erat UdgUssa: comes,eoque extincto Comes Aogutiae, postea ad Matchionis, at non ita pridem Ducis DugUssise dignutionera. tvettUS."—i°'«/. Mm. iiitsrfra. ad Jin. Buc.

_ during

during the feeble reign of his successor; in consequence of which, he re-conquered Ms furmer possessions: and we behold the family afterward* taking part with Robert Bruce. During the reign of the unfortunate, but too guilty, Mary, George Douglas, earl of Morton, entered into the conspiracy against Rizzio, and acted a most conspicuous part during those Unhappy times: in fine, some branch of this family appears to have thenceforth iniermingled in all the intrigues, the conspiracies, the tumults, and the wars, of tli'ise days, during which, the chiefs seldom died in their beds; while the great body of the people were condemned to spill their blood in quarrels from which they could not possibly derive any profit whatsoever.

On the accession of James I. to the throne of England, the Douglases were courted by that crafty monarch ; and we find his majesty sumptuously entertained at Drumlanrig, on his return to the south, in 1017. This residence, sometimes termed n palace, gave a title to its possessor, Charles I. having created bim viscount Drumlanrig, April 1, 1023: }ie was afterward* made earl of Queensberry, June 13, 1033. His second son, sir William Douglas, of Kilhend, was cieated a baronet in 1663 , and from linn is descended the heir to, and now the possessor of, the earldom.

Meanwhile, on the death of the first %Villiam, the second earl displayed great loyalty to Charles I. on which account he suffered many hardships. On his demise, in lori, William, the third carl, made a conspicuous figure as a statesman during the reign of Charles II. by whom he was nominated justicegeneral. By James II. he was created, first, marquis in 1632; and in 1684, duke of Queensberry; before which period, he obtained the post of lord treasurer of Scotland: according to Buraet, he was attached to despotic principles, and " loved to be absolute and direct every thing."

James, the second duke, either perceiving the fallinsr fortunes of the house of Stuart, or being actuated by far different principles from the rest of his family, advocated the cause of William III. and, in qonsequence of this, was taken into favour; for he obtained the oiKce of lord privy seal, and became one of the extraordinary lords of session, and a knight of the garter, in succession. Having exhibited great talents, or at least great adroitness, in the management wf

Mu.NJULY Mill. No. 209.

the Scotch parliament, on the accession of Anne, we find him a secretary of state. He fell into disgrace, however, soon after, on which he and his ad. herents joined the faction termed the iquadione volunte, which was supposed capable at uny time of rendering either of the other two parties preponderant. In 1705, however, when the union wa» resolved upon, both he and the earl of Roxborough, each of whom possessed great influence, and had numerous partisans, were taken once more into favour; ill ill when that grand and most salutary measure was achieved, chiefly by their means, they were eaeh rewarded with a dukedom. Accordingly, the latter became duke of Roxborough, in Scotland, while the former obtained the English dukedom of Dover; he also exercised the oflicc of third secretary of state, was assigned a pension or" three thousand pounds per annum, and had the patronage of all Scotland confided to bis charge.

On his demise, his eldest son, who in 1700 had been created earl of Solwav, succeeded to the titles and estates; but the. house of lords would not ndmit him to a seat, in right of his English peerage, as it was then deemed contrary to the articles of Union, although this has been since decided otherwise. By George I, that same nobleman was nominated n Inrdofthe bed-chamber. By George II. he was appointed vice-admiral of Scotland; and in 1702, received from George III. the valuable office of lord justice-general of Scotland. But such is the influence of literature, that the patronage which his duchess lady Catharine Hyde, daughter of Henry earl of Clarendon and Rochester, bestowed on Gay the poet, will be recollected perhaps when the wealth of the Douglases shall have been dissipated; their titles have become extinct, and their boasted nncestry is forgotten: so mueff more; grateful in the eyes of posterity is the odour of one generous action, calculated to relieve genius from penurv, than the unavailing boast of wealth, the pompous profusion of titles, and all the vain pretensions of blood!

On the death of the duke, without issue (having survived two earls of Drumlanrig, his first and second sons,) October 22, 1778, the titles and entailed estates devolved on his col ateral heir male, whose life is the subject of the present memoir. William, earl of March, who, without the wit, seems te

, i- b.ve

« ZurückWeiter »