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“ After the pulp was impregnated my own conceptions, and I desire iť with the solution, I then spread it thin may not be understood, that I presume on a wire frame of my own construc. to recommend them for practice, being lion, which process, except drying it, conscious, that the manufacturers of with me was final. Not being possess paper, hemp, and flax, from analogy, ed of the means of pressing the paper are possessed of the knowledge of ope. any more than grinding of the lint, rations and means more consonant and and for want of the film which adheres infinitely superior. to the lint being dressed off, I could « These several manufactures from completely destroy the colour, so as the new substance of nettles, patro. to produce a clear white without pick- nized by the stimulating approbation ing out every discoloured particle, and recommendation of the Society of which I so well accomplished, that Arts, &c. I with all due deference when I had reduced the staple in venture to predict will rapidly increase length, in this state it was perfectly the capital of those individuals who free from colour ; the deterioration engage therein, afford new employ. which ensued when converted into pa- ment to the poorer classes of society, per was occasioned by the solution of and become a new source of wealth to gum.
the nation. EDWARD Smith." “ My processes were the fruits of April 28, 1810.
A REVIEW OF THE LIFE AND GENIUS
OF THE LATE
RIGHT HON. WILLIAM WINDHAM.
At a time when so much petulant Tournaments, and poisons, and prisons, folly is daily circulated amongst an and rescues, and ransoms, no longer ignorant multitude, about the extinc- diversify the secret history of the cation of public virtue, the growth of binet; and we cannot woo our reacorruption, and the utter baseness ders with a melting tale of and venality of all statesmen of all Disastrous chances, parties, we have no small satisfaction Of moving accidents by flood and field, in communicating some record to our Or hair-breadth scapes in the imminert readers, of a life whose every act sup- deadly breach. plies some noble refutation of the ca. But we will attempt to furnish, what, lumny. Whatever may have been the in our opinion, is of a nature more inerrors of Mr Windham's judgement, teresting than a thousand corporal admalice itself can cast no aspersion upon ventures ; a review of the conduct of his honour; and it is a circumstance a great mind, under all the varieties redounding in no slight degree to the in which it displayed itself during a glory of his moral character, that, political life, fruitful, beyond all for. though there was no set of men in the mer example, in novel principles, in state, to whom his independent poli popular alarms, and in revolutions of tics had not at some period occasion frightful magnitude ; a survey of those ed offence, there was not an individual intellectual energies, by which the of his acquaintance, in or out of godestinies of half the civilized world vernment, who did not uniformly re were affected, in a mode neither indi. tain, and acknowledge, an unqualified rect nor remote. In order to this end respect for the purity of his motives we shall not confine ourselves to a and the incorruptibility of his mind. bare sketch of the private life of Mr
The time is long past when the bio- Windham, insulated from the eminent graphy of a great man was an amusing individuals, with and against whom he romance. The eminence of political distinguished himself; but rather en. power, which, in ancient days, was to deavour to present a historical picture be climbed only by a precipitous and of his time, taking care, of course, to pathless ascent, is now attained by preserve his portrait the most promian approach, of which the steps are nent figure and main object of the pretty regularly hewn, though the piece. course may be a little more tortugug: The family of Mr Windham, which
VOL. IV. PART IL
was ancient and honourable, had been came so accomplished a master. In settled, for about three centuries, at the September of the following year, Felbrigg on the north-eastern coast he was entered a gentleman commoner of Norfolk, when their estates in that of University College at Oxford, where neighbourhood, which were very con. his tutor was Sir Robert Chambers. siderable, descended to Colonel Wil. It is not a little remarkable, that, at liam Windham. He was a man of the most enthusiastic season of life, lively talents ; and lived on terms of " when young ambition burns most intimacy with Marquis Townshend, brightly, and hope is perpetually at Mr Garrick, and other inen the most hand to fan its fires, a man of Mr distinguished in that day for genius Windham's fervent soul, and possessor wit. He married Mrs Lukin, a ing, as circumstances afterwards evinwidow Lady, by whom he, had one ced, so peculiar a turn and talent for son, William Windham, the subject of political business, should have been tothe present memoir.
tally indifferent to all public affairs. So William Windham was born, in absolute was his apathy at this period, Golden Square, in the city of West- that, as he was wont himself to relate, minster, on the 3d of May, old style, it was a frequent jest amongst his conA. D. 1750. He was sent, at the temporaries to exclaim, “ Windham early age of seven, to Eton school, will never know who is prime miniswhere he had remained about four ter.” He had not attained the age of years, when he suffered a heavy cala- twenty-one, when he actually declined mity in the death of his father. He the advantageous offer of the secre continued, however, to pursue his stu- taryship to the new Lord Lieutenant dies there, till he was about sixteen of Ireland, the Marquis Townshend. years old, when he quitted school with In the year 1777, Mr Windham a high and deserved reputation. Those, quitted the university. It was not who were acquainted with him in af. long before the ardour of his temperater life, will be little surprised at ment induced him to form an attachfinding, that he was not more distin- ment to a lady in the immediate neigh. guished for the rapidity of his studious bourhood of Felbrigg, who seemed to talents than for the enterprising open- return his affection with equal warmth. ness and manly gaiety of his temper and But on a sudden, when all things were courage. Dr Barnard, the head mas- apparently ripening for their union, ter, used to relatę, when the names of she became involved in a connexion Windham and Fox had become cele, with a gentleman already married, brated in the parliamentary annals of which terminated in a disgraceful their country, that they were the two elopement. We forbear, through molast boys he had ever flogged. It was tives of delicacy, to mention names for eloping together to see a play at and minute particulars. Mr Windo Windsor, that this chastisement was ham resolved to seek relief, in a change inflicted.
of scene, from the distress of this afFrom Eton he transferred the seat ficting event. He therefore joined, of his studies to Glasgow, where, un, as a passenger, in the expedition under the tuition of Professor Ander- der Commodore Phipps and Sir Joseph son, and Dr Robert Simson, the cele. Banks, which had for its object the brated editor of Euclid, he laid the extension of geographical discovery foundation of those mathematical ac, towards the North Pole ; but indispoquirements of which he afterwards be- sition compelled him to desist from his
undertaking, and he was landed, with ing the immediate advance of the cusa faithful servant, on the coast of Nor- tomary allowance, grounded theirarms. way.
Mr Windham, undaunted, repeated It was not till more than five years the order. The firmness of his man. after this time that he made his first ner seemed to disconcert some of the essay ás a public speaker. A meeting mutineers, and they were about to reof Norfolk gentlemen had been called pair their fault by a seasonable obedi. at Norwich, to collect a private sub- ence, when one of their body, stepping scription in aid of the war against the forward from the ranks, reproached American colonies. This object Mr his comrades with their pusillanimity, Windham strenuously opposed, in a and revived the drooping spirit of their speech, which drew from the Marquis sedition. Mr Windham's presence of Townshend himself, the proposer of mind did not forsake him. He seithe subscription, a candid and warm zed the offender with his own hand, panegyric. Many of the assembly, as and, obtaining some assistance, promight have been expected, persevered ceeded to escort him to the guard. in the measure of the subscription ; house. and those, who concurred with Mr. The disturbance then began to asWindham, withdrew to another part sume a more serious aspect. The sol. of the town, where they framed a diers opposed the commitment of their strong protest against the proceedings comrade ; and the populace, joining of the subscribers.
the malcontents, began a riotous asThe Norfolk militia had been greatly sault with stones. The tumult every indebted, for the goodness of its disci- moment increased; the clamour swellpline, to the care and ability of Mr ed more and more loudly; and the Windham's father, the author of a personal danger of Mr Windham be. military treatise, of great value and came appalling and immediate. But practical utility. This force was call. his was not a constitution which threats ed out in 1778, and the statesman, could unnerve. He persevered in his whose biography we are sketching, attempt, and, after a personal conflict had the rank of Major in the Western with three of the ringleaders, succeedbattalion. When the corps was about ed in lodging the culprit within the to leave Norwich for an adjoining guard-house. county, an order was issued by the The evening wore away, but withlieutenant-colonel, that the bounty, out any satisfactory symptom of return. which is called the marching guinea, ing tranquillity; and when the day should not be paid till the regiment shut in the town was not yet quiet. had actually quitted Norfolk. This It now seemed probable that a rescue measure Mr Windham opposed, but would be attempted; and, in the anin vain ; and he therefore felt himself ticipation of that occurrence, Major bound to submit, and to enforce, as a Windham resolved to continue with soldier, what he could not help dissua. his prisoner during the night. ding as an adviser. The men, as he At four o'clock in the morning the seems to have foreseen, were deeply expected attack was commenced. A discontented at the delay of payment; party of the militia surrounded the and when, Mr Windham, who, as guard-house, and, with their bayonets major, commanded the regiment in the fixed, demanded the liberation of the absence of the lieutenant-colonel, gave prisoner. Mr Windham presented them the order to march, they pro- himself at the door with his sword ceeded to open mutiny, and, demand- drawn. “ While I have life," exclaimed he, “ to defend this spot, the nately defeated ; but Mr Windhami prisoner shall not be suffered to escape.” had the satisfaction to poll a very conThe mob encouraged the soldiery, and siderable body of voters, and to receive stood at hand to abet the rescue ; and, warm assurances of support for a fu. thus incited, the mutineers were pro- ture occasion. ceeding to acts of absolute force, when He now attached himself to the the prisoner himself came forward, and party of the Marquis of Rockingham, addressed them. “ Do not,” said he, which already boasted the talents of “ do not, I beseech you, offer vio- Mr Fox, and of the celebrated Edmund lence to Major Windham. He is the Burke, to whom Mr Windham bebest of men; and even if you succeed came a zealous friend, personal and in rescuing me from my confinement, political. This private intimacy was I will again surrender myself into cus- cemented by their intercourse at a 80tody,"
ciety, then called the Literary Club, This declaration had some effect in and claiming to itself at the present appeasing the ferment of the assailants. hour (for it still subsists) the title, The civil powers contributed their aid; par excellence, of The Club. Of this and, by the coolness and intrepid wis- distinguished fraternity Dr Johnson dom of Mr Windham, the disturbance was a member; and the high opinion was at last allayed, without any con- entertained by that mighty veteran of sequences of more serious mischief. the yet untried abilities of Mr Wind. The battalion was thus reduced to ham, may be gathered from a letter order; and marched peaceably into written in Dr Taylor's house at Ashthe county of Suffolk.
bourne, which Mr Boswell has preserBut a fever, occasioned by a conti. ved, and which contains the following nuance for several hours in wet clothes, remarkable eulogium : very shortly deprived the militia of " Mr Windham has been here to MrWindham's valuable services. His see me. He came, I think, forty illness was long and dangerous, and it miles out of his way; and staid about is supposed that his constitution never a day and a half; perhaps I may make entirely overcame the ill effects which the time shorter than it was. Such it left behind. When his strength conversation I shall not have again, till began to return, he was advised to I come back to the regions of literaundertake a tour on the continent for ture ; and there Windham is inter ig. the re-establishment of his health ; and nes Luna minores." two years were accordingly employed Shortly after the accession of the by him, in a journey through yarious Rockingham ministry, Mr Windham parts of Switzeriand and Italy. He declined an invitation from the Westreturned to his native country in Sep. minster election committee, to come tember 1780, on the eve of a general forward as a candidate for that city on election.
the next vacancy. The popular claOn arriving at Norwich in his way mour, in that day as in the present, home, he found that his friends, who was loud and high for a parliamentary had supposed him to be still upon the reform ; and Mr Windham had too continent, had nevertheless nominated sincere an affection for the established him as a candidate for the representa constitution of the country in which tion of the city in parliament. In he had been brought up, and too clear three days the poll was to commence. an insight into the perilous consequenUnder the disadvantage of so short a ces of innovation in so radical an artipreparation, their object was unfortu. cle as the composition of the House