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LIFE of the Rt. Hon. JOSEPH ADDISON, Esq; (cincluded.]
AFTER his decease, Mr. Tickell, who name; as also was the Drummer, or the 1 had the author's commands and in: Haunted House, a comedy, not taken notice Structions, collected and published his of in this edition ; but published afterworks in four volumes in quarto. In this wards as Mr. Addison's by Sir Richard edition there are several pieces hitherto Steele. unmentioned, of which it is necessary we This play had been written by Mr. Adshould speak. The first, in order of time, dison many years before he died; and Sir is the Differtation upon Medals; and though Richard Steele, coming to an accidental published after his death, yet the materials perusal of it, prevailed on the author to for it were collected in Italy, and he ac- make some additions and alterations, and tually began to digest them into order, let it appear on the stage ; where it was when at Vienna, in the year 1902. These presented, but with no great success. Sir Dialogues are every way worthy of Mr. Richard thereupon published it with Mr. Addison; the defign is just and useful, the Addison's consent, and wrote a preface to manner correct, beautiful, and in the true it, wherein he accounts for this comedy's taste of antiquity. All the elegance of being not well received, or at least not so Plato, all the good sense and masculine well as it deserved, by observing, that the gravity of Tully, with a becoming air of strokes therein are too delicate for every humour, in which Mr. Addison was truly taste in a popular assembly; it being like an original, are conspicuous in this little a picture, in which the strokes were not work. The editor took a great deal of strong enough to appear at a distance, pains in translating the Latin quotations ; Mr. Tickell, publishing Mr. Addison's and the verses prefixed to it by Mr. Pope, works in 1721, omitted this play ; which are as perfect in poetry, as the piece itself Sir Richard Steele so much resented, that is in prose. In November, 1707, there he quickly after published a second edition came abroad a pamphlet under the title of, of it, with an epiftle to Mr. Cong eve Tbe present State of ibe War, and ite Necif- thereto prefixed. In this epifle he allerts, fity of ar Augmentation considered. It is now that he recommended it to the Nage, and printed among Mr. Addifon's works, and carried it to the press : he likewise tells us nobody who reads it will doubt that it is the price it was sold at, viz. fifty guineas, his. The spirit in which it is writ, the He refers himself to his former preface, for we ghty observations contained therein on a proof of his zeal on that occasion, the strength and interest of foreign nations, which, he observes, could flow from noand the comprehendve knowledge shewn thing else than his affection for the author. of all things relating to our own, evince it For as to the share any one else had in it, the work of no ordinary hand. The Wbis he is positive it very little exceeded that of Examiner came out on the fourteenth of an amanuensis. “But, indeed, continues September 1710, for the first time. There he, had I not known it at the time of the were five papers in all attributed to Mr. transaction concerning the acting on the Addison. These are by much the feverest stage and sale of the copy, I mould, I things he ever wrote. Dr. Sacheverel, Mr. think, have seen Mr. Addison in every Prior, and many other persons, are in page of it; for he was above all men in them very harshly treated. The Examiner that talent called humour, and enjoyed it had done the same thing on the part of the in such perfection, that I have often reTories, and the avowed design of this pa- flected, after a night spent with him, apart per was to make reprisals. In 1713 there from all the world, that I had had the was published a little pamphlet, intituled, pleasure of conversing with an intimate The late Trial and Convi&tion of Count Tarifi acquaintance of Terence and Catullus, who It was intended to expose the Tory mini- had all their wit and nature, heightened ftry on the subject of the French commerce. with humour more exquisite and delightbili, and is likewise a very severe piece. ful than any other man ever portefied. There are all that are included in Mr, They who shall read this play, after being Tickell's edition, which were publiched in let into the secret that it was written by the life-time of Mr, Addison, without his Mr. Addsson, or under his direction, will
proprobably be attentive to those excellencies Somers, which, after the death of Sir Jowhich they before overlooked ; and won- seph Jekyll, being publickly sold, this little der they did not till now observe, that piece came to be printed in 1739, and was there is not an expreffion in the whole as well received as it deserved. To these piece, which has not in it the most nice we must add Tbe Old Wbig, No. 1, and 2, propriety and aptitude to the character (pamphlets written in defence of the which utters it: there is that smiling mirth, Peerage-bill in 1719) both which were that delicate satire, and genteel raillery, very severely answered by a paper called which appeared in Mr. Addison when he the Plebeian, then said to fall from the was free among intimate's; I say, when pen of a member of the house of commons, he was free from his remarkable bashful- and afterwards known to have been wiiiness, which is a cloak that hides and ten by Sir Richard Steele. muffles merit; and his abilities were co- Thus have we related all the remarkable vered only by modesty, which doubles the particulars of this great man's life and beauties which are seen, and gives credit writings; on the latter of which we have and efteem to all that are concealed. The already spoken so largely, that there only Drummer made no great figure on the remains for us to add, that whatever be Itage, though exquisitely well acted; but wrote, it was always performed with the when I observe this, I say a much harder greatest ease and readiness, as well as acthing of the stage than of the comedy, curacy and correctness. As a proof of the When I say the stage in this place, I am extraordinary facility with which he proUnderstood to mean, in general, the present duced even the most perfect of his per. taste of theatrical representations; where formances, an instance may be taken from nothing that is not violent, and, as I may what Sir Richard Steele says of his Cato: say, grossly deligbrful, can come on without he tells us, that the last act was written hazard of being condemned or Nighted.” in less than a week's time. “ For this,
Nothing can be more just than Sir continues he, was particular in this writer, Richard's sentiments on this matter. Ex- that when he had taken his resolution, or perience justified his conjecture. This made his plan for what he deligned to play, which failed when inimitably acted write, he would walk about a room, and at Drury-Lane, was, when much worse dictate it into language, with as much freeperformed, loudly applauded at Mr. Rich's dom and ease as any one could write it house, merely because it was then known down, and attend to the coherence and to be Mr. Addison's. How honourable grammar of what he dictated.” this for our author! how dishonourable to By the Great he was always revered the audience! how happy was he to have and esteemed. To attempt the reckoning his former writings read by better judges ! up his friends would be an endless labour;
The time in which he lived was worthy of and yet to say nothing of those who diftinMr. Addison; but if his writings should guished Mr. Addison, at the same time ever reach an age so stupid, or so barbarous, that they were themselves persons of the as not to relith them, that will not alter first distinction, would be an unpardontheir nature; they will still remain as ex. able omission. We have already taken no. cellent as before, though not in the eyes tice of Lord Somers, whose friendship to of those Goths and Vandals.
our author continued without intermiffion Since the coming out of Mr. Tickell's as long as he lived. We have likewise edition, the following pieces have been mentioned Mr. Addison's gratitude towards ascribed to our author : Differtatio de infig- him in the Dedication of his Travels, after mioribus Romanorum poetis, i. e. A D ffertation that nobleman had been impeached in the upon the most eminent Roman Poets. reign of William, and was actually, when This is supposed to have been written he dedicated to him, in disgrace with Queen about 1692, and is allowed to contain Anne. We are yet to remark, that as Mr. many use'ul observations ; yet nobody has Addison outlived him, ro in one of his hitherto ventured to decide, whether it is, Freeholders he paid such a tribute to his or is not, Mr. Addison's.---- A Discourse un memory, as muit endear his own to every ancient and modern Learning : the time when man of honour. The celebrated Earl of it was written uncertain ; but probably as Halifax maintained also an inviolable early as the former. It was preserved friendship for our auther, throughout his amongst the manuscripts of the Lord whole life. These were his more parti
colar friends among the Great : of the no- fcribers is a catalogue of the whole Engbility in general he had not only the ac- Jim nobility, and of the most learned and quaintance, but the friendship and esteem. eminent men both of our own and other The shining list of subscribers to the first nations. The total number of subscribers edition of bis works, both of foreign na to the first edition in quarto, published in tions and our own, is a proof in what 1721, amount to one thousand; and this high reputation his writings were, fince lift is, without doubt, the most magnificent they attracted the notice of such eminent that ever any work was dignified with; an personages. A few of the principal we honourable and lasting monument to the have extracted : her majesty the queen of fame of Mr. Addison. Sweden ; his royal highness the duke of He had no enemies, except such as were Orleans, regent of France (five fetts); the ro on account of party; and even there, great duke of Tuscany (two setts); the such was their admiration of his virtues, great prince of Tuscany (two setts); his expressed their enmity with reluctance, highness, the duke of Modena; his high- But the severest attack he ever met with ress the duke of Parma; his highness was from Mr. Pope, in those verses which the prince of Modena ; his highness the are now inserted in his Epistle to Dr. Arprince of Parma; the most serene Ambro- buthnot. This affair has been represented fio Imperiale, doge of Genoa ; his high- in many lights. Dr. Warburton, in his ness the duke of Guastalla ; his highness remarks on this passage of Mr. Pope, has prince Eugene of Savoy ; his eminency the given a very full account of this matter; cardinal Del Giudice; his eminency the whether with a manifest partiality to Mr. cardinal Du Bois; marshal D'Ecrées; and Pope, or not, we will not take upon us to a great number of other foreign nobility. say. The Doctor says, there was a very Those of our own royal family were, her great friendship between Mr. Pope and royal highness Caroline, princess of Wales Mr. Addison, which was cultivated with (the late queen); his royal highness the mutual fatisfaction on both sides for many duke of York, then bishop of Osnabrug, years; but Mr. Pope's growing reputation, and brother to his majefty king George I. and superior genius in poetry, gave umand his royal highness prince Frederic, af- brage to his friend, whose jealousy on this terwards created duke of York, and fince account produced a coldness on the part prince of Wales, father to his present ma- of Mr. Addison, and several indirect means jefty king George III. Of our own no. to hurt Mr. Pope. Whereupon the latter bility, the duke and dutchess of Bolton ; fent Mr. Addison these verses, written in the duke and dutchess of Kent; the duke his own hand; which rebuke produced so of Grafton, lord lieutenant of Ireland, good an effect, that Mr. Addison ever afand his dutchess; the duke and dutchess terwards did Mr. Pope justice. However of Queensberry and Dover; the dutchess of this be, the making these verses public, Bedford ; the duke of Richmond ; the and publishing them in his works, will duke of Roxburgh, principal secretary of ever remain a lasting proof of an inexftate ; duke of Newcastle, lord chamber. curable severity in Mr. Pope to his friend, lain of his majesty's houshold; the duke and a convincing mark of his ill nature; of Chandos, duke of Wharton, archbishop fince, as Dr. W. acknowledges Mr. Pope's of York, duke of Montrose, dutchess of end in writing them was answered, he Montagu, earl of Halifax, earl of Godol. ought to have destroyed them, and not pbin, lord Carteret, the other principal have suffered them to have been exposed secretary of state, bishops, privy counsel to the eye of the world, at the expence of lors, lawyers, earls, viscounts, and barons his friend's reputation *. innumerable. In short, this 'lift of sub- To return to our subject : Mr. Addison's
• See the Adventurer, vol. ii. p. 166, No. 90, which contains a vision of the Temple of Fame, wherein' all who had ever made any pretensions to fame, were, by the command of Apollo and the Muses, enjoined to sacrifice upon the altar in the temple all those parts of their works which had hitherto been preserved to their infamy, that their names might descend spotle's and unsullied to posterity. Amongst numbers of offerings made by different authors, Mr. Pope advanced towards Addison (one of the assistants to the high priests appointed for this occafion), and delivered, with great character may be thus briefly summed up. means a fincere friend to his country; His genius was immortal, his performances humble in his deportment, diffident of his equally perfect; nothing puerile in the own abilities, modeft to a fault, equally most early, nothing below his genius in affable to all. Living, he was universally the last ; just in his conduct, amiable in esteemed, beloved, and honoured : dead, his behaviour, sweet in his disposition, mo. he was most sincerely regretted and laderate in his principles; a zealous adro- mented. He was a pattern for our imitze cate for the reigning family, and by that tion; in a word, a fincere Chriftian,
To the Authors of the BRITISH MAGAZINE. Gentlemen, M R . Addison's character of the great Lord-chancellor Somers has been T 1 so much admired by every one who has read it, that there needs no apology for transcribing and giving it a place here, fince it will be a very proper supplement to his Life, and a specimen of his manner of writing. Thofe who have the Freeholder in their libraries, this re-perusal will not offend; and to those who have never read it, we are sure it will be agreeable ; and, besides, will be a means of setting again in a proper and true light the character of this nobleman, which had suffered from the invidious misrepresentations of Dean Swift, in his History of the Four last Years of the Queen, published not long ago, in the eyes of those who were not acquainted with the Dean's notorious partiality,
CHARACTER of JOHN, Lord SOMERS.
IT often happens, that extirpating the I love of glory, which is observed to take the deepest root in noble minds, tears up several virtues with it; and that suppreir ing the desire of fame, is apt to reduce men to a kind of indolence and supineness, But when, without any incentive of vanity, a person of great abilities is zealous for the good of mankind, and as solicitous for the concealment, as the performance of illuf. trious actions, we may be sure that he has fomething more than ordinary in his com
position, and has a heart filled with good. ness and magnanimity.
There is not perhaps, in all history, a greater instance of this temper of mind, than what appeared in that excellent per son who is the subject of this paper. He had worn himself out in his application to such studies as made him useful or ornamental to the world, in concerting schemes for the welfare of his country, and in pro. fecuring such measures as were neceffary for making those schemes effectual: but ali
humility, those lines written exprelly against him, fo remarkable for their excellence and their crurlty, repeating this couplet;
" Curst be the verse, how well foe'er it flow,
Por E. The ingenious critic inosted on his taking them again; “ for, said he, my afto. ciates at the altar, particularly Horace, would never permit a line of so excellent a la fyrist to be consumed. The many compliments paid me in other parts of your works, amply compensate for this light indignity. And be affured, that no litrle pique or mistiderítanding Mal! ever make me a foe to genius.” Pope bowed in some crníuhon, and promised to statute a fictious name at least, which was all that was left in his power--.' The rest of this number abourds with the like fense, wit, and learning. In the prefent editions of Pope's works, instead of the word A----9, as formerly, we find soci's ; bue fill there can be no excuse offered for affronting Mr. Addison's memo. sy, by openly inserting these verses in the works of Mr. Pope.
this was done with a view to the public with that graceful modesty and reserve, good, that should rise out of these generous which made his virtues more beautiful, the endeavoers, and not to the fame which more they were cast in such agreeable irould accrue to himself. Let the reputa- fhades. tion of the a&tion fall where it would, so His religion was fincere, not oftentakis juntry reaped the benefit of it, he cious; and such as inspired him with an was satisfied. As this çurn of mind threw universal benevolence towards all his fele, in a great measure, the oppositions of low subjects, not with bitterness againft eaty and competition, it enabled him to any part of them. He newed his firm gain the most vain and impracticable into adherence to it, as modelled by our nahis deigns, and to bring about several tional constitution, and was constant to its great events for the safety and advantage offices of devotion, both in public, and in of the public, which must have died in his family. He appeared a champion for their birth, had he been as defirous of ap- it, with great reputation, in the cause of pearing beneficial to mankind, as of being the Seven Bishops, at a time when the
church was really in danger. To which As he was admitted into the secret and we may add, that he held a ftri&t friend moit retired thoughts and counsels of his ship and correspondence with the great royal master, king William, a great share archbishop Tillotson, being actuated by the in the plan of the Protestant Succession is fame spirit of candor and moderation ; universally ascribed to him. And if he and moved rather with pity than indigna. did not intirely project the union of the tion towards the persons of those who difa two kingdoms, and the bill of regency, fered from him in the uneffential parts of which seem to have been the only methods Cliristianity. in human policy for securing to us so in His great humanity appeared in the eftimable a blessing, there is none who will minuteft circumstances of his conversation. deny him to have been the chief conductor You found it in the benevolence of his in both these glorious works. For pofte- aspect, the complacency of his behaviour, rity are obliged to allow him that praise and the tone of his voice. His great apafter his death, which he industriously de- plication to the severer studies of the law, clined while he was living. His life, in- had not infected his temper with any thing deed, seems to have been prolonged beyond positive or litigious. He did not know its natural term, under those indispositions what it was to wrangle on indifferent which hung upon the latter part of it, that points, to triumph in the superiority of his he might have the satisfaction of seeing the understanding, or to be supercilious on the happy Settlement take place, which he had fide of truth. He joined the greatest deliproposed to himself as the principal end of cacy of good breeding to the greatest all his public labours. Nor was it a small strength of reason. By approving the fenaddition to his happiness, that by this timents of a person, with whom he con. means he saw those who had been always versed, in such particulars as were just, he his most intimate friends, and who had won him over from those pomts in which Concerted with him such measures for the he was mistaken ; and had so agreeable a guaranty of the Protestant Succeffion, as way of conveying knowledge, that whodrev upon them the displeasure of men ever conferred with him grew the wiser, who were averse to it, advanced to the without perceiving that he had been in highest posts of trust and honour, I believe structed. We may probably ascribe to this there are none of these patriots who will masterly and engaging manner of converthink it a derogation from their merit to fation, the great efteem which he had have it said, that they received many lights gained with Queen Anne, while Me purand advantages from their intimacy with sued those measures which had carried the Lord Somers; who had such a general British nation to the highest pitch of glory, knowledge of affairs, and so tender a con- notwithstanding the had entertained many cern for his friends, that, whatever station unreasonable prejudices against him, before they were in, they usually applied to him she was acquainted with his perfonal worth for his advice in every perplexity of bufi- and behaviour. ness, and in affairs of the greatest diffi- As, in his, political capacity, we have
before seen how much he contributed to His life was, in every part of it, set off the establishment of the protestant intereft,