ページの画像
PDF

for I think I do God and my country good service in preserving the king, and by the grace of God I will venture my life and all for him, and set him safe on shore if I can in France. Upon which ye merchant came and told me what had passed between them, and therefore found myself under the necessity of trusting him, but I took no kind of notice of it presently to him, but thinking it convenient not to let him go home lest he should be asking advice of his wife, or any one else, we keept him in the inn, and sat up all night drinking beer, and taking tobacco with him: and here I run another very great danger, as being confident I was known by the master of the inn. For as I was standing after supper by the fire-side, leaning my hand upon a chair, and all the rest of the family being gone into another room, the master of the house came in and fell a talking with me, and just as he was looking about, and saw there was nobody in the room, he upon a sudden kissed my hand that was upon the back of the chair, and said to me, God bless you, wheresoever you go. I doubt not before I die but to be a lord, and my wife a lady; so I laughed and went away into the next room, not desiring then any further discourse with him, there being no remedy against my being known by him, and more discourse might have raised suspicion, on which consideration I thought it best to trust him in that matter, and he proved honest. About four o'clock in the morning, myself and the company before named, went towards Shoreham, taking the master of the ship with us on horseback, behind one of our company, and came to the vessell side, which was not above sixty tons; but it being low water, and the vessel lying dry, I and my lord Wilmot got up a ladder into her, and went and lay down in the little cabbin till the tide came to fetch us off; but I was no sooner got into the ship and lay down upon the bed, but the master came in to me,

fell down upon his knees and kissed my hand, telling me, that he knew me very well, and that he would venture life and all that he had in the world, to set me down safe in France. So about seven o’clock in the morning, it being high water, we went out of the port, but ye master being bound for Pool, laden with sea-coal, because he w” not have it seen from Shoreham that he did not go his intended voyage, but stood all the day with a very easy sail towords the Isle of Wight, only my lord Wilmot and myself of my company on board, and as we were sailing, the master came to me, and desired me to persuade his men to use their endeavour (with me) to get him to set us on shore in France, the better to cover him from any suspicion thereof, upon which I sent to the men (which were four and a boy) and told them truly that we were two merchants that had had some misfortunes, and were a little in debt; that we had some money owing us at Rouen, in France, and were afraid of being arrested in England; that if they would perswaid the master (the wind being very fair) to give us a trip over to Dieppe, or one of the ports near Rouen, they would oblige us very much; and with that I gave e'm twenty shillings to drink, upon which they undertook to second me if I would propose it to their master. So I went to the master and told him our condition, and that if he would give us a trip over to France, we would give him a consideration for it; upon which he counterfeited a difficulty, saying it wd hinder his voiage, but his men, as they had promised, joined their perswaisions to our's, and at last he yielded to set us over. So about five o'clock in the afternoon as we were in sight of the Isle of Wight, we stood directly for the coast of France, the wind being then full north, and the next morning a little before day we saw the coast; but the tide failing us, and the wind coming about to the southwest, we were forced to come to an anchor within two miles of the shore, till the tide of flood was done: we found ourselves just before an harbour in France called Fechham, and just as the tide of ebb was made; espied a ship to leward of us, which by her nimble working, I suspected to be an Ostend privateer, upon which I went to my lord Wilmot, and telling him my opinion of that ship, proposed to him our going on shore in the little cock-boat, for fear they sha prove so, as not knowing, but finding us going into a port of France, there being then a war between France and Spain, they might plunder us, and might possibly carry us away, and set us ashore in England; the master also himself had the same opinion of her being an Ostender, and came to me to tell me so. Which tho’ I made it my business to disswaid him from, for fear it sha tempt him to set sail back again with us for the coast of England, yet so sensible was I of it, that I and my la Wilmot went both on shore in the cock-boat, and going up into the town of Feckham, stayed there all day to provid horses for Rouen; the vessel which so affrighted us proved only a French sloop. The next day we got to Rouen, to an inn, one of the best in the town, in the fish-markett, where they mad a difficulty to receive us, taking us by our cloths to be some thieves, or persons that had been doing some very ill thing, untill Mr. Sanbourne, a merchant for whom I sent, came and answered for us. One particular more there is observable in relation to this our passage into France, that the vessel that brot us over had no sooner landed me, and I had given them a pass for fear of meeting with any of our Jersey frigates, that the wind turned so happely for her, as to carry her directly over to Pool, without it being known that she had ever been upon the coast of France. We stayed at Rouen one day, to provide ourselves better cloths, and give notice to the queen, my mother, who was then at Paris,

[graphic]

of my being safely landed; after which, setting out in a hired coach, I was met by my mother with coaches, short of Paris, and by her conducted thither, where I safely arived.

.M few short Motes of the King’s relating to the foregoing Marrative. There were six brothers of the Penderell’s, who all of them knew the secret, and as I have since learnt from one of them, the man in whose house I changed my cloths, came to one of them about two days after, and asking where I was, told him he might get a 1000 pounds if they wd tell, because there was that sum laid upon my head; but this Penderell was so honest, although he knew at that time where I was, he bid him have a care what he did, for that I being got out of all reach, if they sh" now discover I had ever been there, they wo get nothing but hanging for their pains. It was Mr. Gifford that brought me acquainted with the White Ladies. I would not change my cloths at any of the Penderell’s houses, because I meant to make farther use of them, and they might be suspected, but rather chose to do it in a house where they were not papists, I neither knowing then, nor to this day, what the man’s name was at whose house I did it. The Penderells' have since endeavoured to mitigate the business of their being tempted by their neighbours to discover me. But one of them did certainly declare it to me at that time. I did not depend upon meeting my lord Wilmot, but sent only to know what was become of him; for he and I had agreed to meet at London, at the Three Cranes, in the Vintry, and to enquire for Will Ashburnham. When I got to Trent, Mrs. Lane and Mr. Lassels went home. I could never get my lord Wilmot to put on any disguise, he saying, that he sh” look frightfully in it, and therefore did not put on any.

MEMOIRs of THE LATE MR. wiNDHAM.

MR. WINDHAM was descended from an ancient and highly respectable family in the county of Norfolk, where they had resided for several generations, and possessed a considerable property. His father, William Windham, was one of the most admired characters of his time; and, in 1756, soon after the plan of a national militia was formed by Mr. Pitt (afterwards earl of Chatham) this gentleman, in conjunction with the late marquis Townshend, was extremely zealous and active in promoting and carrying into execution that scheme, which has since proved so salutary to his country. On this subject he published one or two very excellent pamphlets. He died in 1761, leaving his only son, then eleven years old, under the care of the executors of his will, the rev. Dr. Dampier, then under master of Eton-school, and Mr. Garrick. Mr. Windham was born at Felbriggehall, the family-seat in Norfolk, in March 1750. He received the early part of his education at Eton, where he continued from 1762 to the autumn of 1766, when he removed to the university at Glasgow, where he resided for about a year in the house of Dr. Anderson, professor of natural philosophy, and diligently attended his lectures, and those of Dr. Robert Simson, professor of mathematicks, the well known author of a treatise on conick sections, and of other learned works. Here

first, probably, he became fond of those studies, to which he was ever afterwards strongly addicted.* In September 1767, he became a gentleman commoner of University college in Oxford, Mr. (afterwards sir Robert). Chambers, being his tutor. During his academick courset strom 1767 to 1771], he was highly distinguished for his application to various studies, for his love of enterprise, for that frank and graceful

. address, and that honourable deport

ment, which gave a lustre to his character through every period of his life. In 1773, when he was but twenty-three years old, his love of adventure, and his thirst of knowledge, induced him to accompany his friend Constantine lord Mulgrave, in his voyage towards the north pole; but he was so harassed with sea-sickness, that he was under the necessity of being landed in Norway, and of wholly abandoning his purpose. In 1778, he became a major in the Norfolk militia, then quartered at Bury in Suffolk, where, by his intrepidity and personal exertion,t he quelled a dangerous mutiny, which had broken out; notwithstanding he was highly beloved by the regiment. On one of the mutineers laying hold of a part of his dress, he felled him to the ground, and put him into confinement; and, on his comrades afterwards surrounding him, and insisting on the release of the delinquent, he drew his sword, and kept them at bay, till a party of his own company joined and rescued him. Soon afterwards, in consequence of his being obliged to remain several hours in wet clothes, he was seized with a dangerous, billious fever, which nearly deprived him of his life. In the autumn of that year, partly with a view of restoring his health, he went abroad, and spent the two following years in Switzerland and Italy. Previously to his leaving England, he was chosen a member of the literary club, founded by sir Joshua Reynolds and Dr. Johnson (who had the greatest esteem for Mr. Windham) and, notwithstanding his engagements in consequence of his parliamentary business, and the important offices which he filled, he was a very frequent attendant at the meetings of that respectable society (for which he always expressed the highest value) from 1781 to near the time of his death. So early as the year 1769, when he was at Oxford, and had not yet attained his twentieth year, the late marquis Townshend, then lord lieutenant of Ireland, whom he twice visited during his residence in that country, offered him the office of his principal secretary; but he declined it in a letter which is still extant, and which very forcibly displays that excellent sense, and those honourable sentiments, which afterwards uniformly regulated his conduct. In 1782 he came into parliament, where he sat for twenty-eight years, at first for Norwich, and afterwards for various boroughs; and he so early distinguished himself in the house of commons, that he was selected by

* Mr. W. has left behind him three treatises on mathematical subjects, which he

directed, by his will, should be put into the hands of the bishop of Rochester (Dr. Horsley) who was then living; adding, that if he should think them of any value, they might be published. f In 1782, he was created M. A. and in 1793, D. C. L. at the installation of the duke of Portland; when so high was the admiration of his character, that on his entering the theatre, the whole assembly rose from their seats, and hailed him with loud applause. # Of his dauntless courage many instances might be given. In May 1785, he ascended from Moulsey Hurst in a balloon, with Mr. Sadler; and in 1793, having visited the army engaged in the siege of Valenciennes, he surveyed all the works with the most minute attention, in company with captain (now colonel) Thornton, and approached so near the enemy, that he was often within the reach of their cannon.

[graphic]

Mr. Burke in June 1784, to second his motion for a representation to his majesty on the state of the nation. In the preceding year, he had been appointed principal secretary to the earl of Northington, then constituted lord lieutenant of Ireland; and in that capacity he visited Dublin in the spring of 1783, and intended to have accompanied his excellency when he afterwards opened the session of parliament there in October;” but being prevented by illness, he relinquished his office; and his friend the hon. Thomas Pelham (now earl of Chichester) was appointed secretary in his room From the time of his coming into parliament to the year 1793, he usually voted with the opposition of that day; but he never was what is called a thorough party man, frequently deviating from those to whom he was in general attached, when, in matters of importance, his conscience directed him to take a different course from them; on which account, his virtues and talents were never rightly appreciated by persons of that description, who frequently on this ground vainly attempted to undervalue him. After the rupture between Mr. Fox and Mr. Burke, in consequence of the French revolution, Mr. Windham attached himself wholly to the latter, with whom he had for many years lived in the closest intimacy; and of whose ge.

nius and virtues he had always the

highest admiration. Being, with him, thoroughly convinced of the danger then impending over his country from the measures adopted by certain classes of Englishmen, in consequence of that tremendous convulsion, he did not hesitate to

* When about to visit that country in his official capacity, he called on Dr. Johnson; and in the course of conversation, lamented that he should be under the necessity of sanctioning practises of which he could not approve. “Don’t be afraid, sir,” said the doctor, with a pleasant smile, “you will soon make a very pretty rascal.”—Dr. Johnson, in a letter to Dr. Brocklesby, written at Ashbourne, in 1784, says: “Mr. Windham has been here to see me—he came, I think, forty miles out of his way, and staid about a day and a half; perhaps I make the time shorter than it was. Such conversation I shall not have again till I come back to the regions of literature, and there Windham is inter stellas luna minores.”—EDIT.

unite with the duke of Portland, lord Spencer and others, in accepting offices under the administration in which Mr. Pitt then presided. ©n this arrangement Mr. Windham was appointed secretary at war, with a seat in the cabinet, an honourable distinction which had never before been annexed to that office. This station he continued to fill with the highest reputation from that time §. till 1801, when he, lord Spencer, lord Grenville, and Mr. Pitt, resigned their offices; and shortly afterwards Mr. Addington (now lord viscount Sidmouth) was appointed chancellor of the exchequer and first lord of the treasury. On the preliminaries of peace with France being acceded to by that statesman and his coadjutors in 1801, Mr. Windham made his celebrated speech in parliament, which was afterwards [April 1802] published, with an appendix, containing a character of the present usurper of the French throne, which will transmit to posterity the principal flagitious passages of his life up to that period, in the most lively colours. On Mr. Addington being driven from the helm, in 1805, principally by the battery of Mr. Windham’s eloquence, a new administration was again formed by Mr. Pitt, which was dissolved by his death in 1806; and shortly afterwards, on lord Grenville’s accepting the office of first lord of the treasury, Mr. Windham was appointed secretary of state for the war department, which he held till his majesty, in the following year, thought fit to constitute a new administration. During this period he carried into a law his bill for the limited service of those who enlist in our regular army; a measure which will ever endear his name to the English soldiery. The genius and talents of this illustrious statesman are well known and universally acknowledged. He was unquestionably the most distin

guished man of the present time, and not inferiour, in many respects, to the most admired characters of the age that is just gone by. He had been, in his earlier years, a very diligent student, and was an excellent Greek and Latin scholar. In his latter years, like Burke and Johnson, he was an excursive reader, but gathered a great variety of knowledge from different books, and from occasionally mixing, like them, with very various classes and descriptions of men. His memory was most tenacious. In his parliamentary speeches his principal object always was to convince the understanding by irrefragable argument, which he at the same time enlivened by a profusion of imagery, drawn sometimes from the most abstruse parts of science, but oftener from the most familiar objects of common life. But what gave a peculiar lustre to whatever he urged, was his known and uniform integrity, and a firm conviction in the breasts of his hearers, that he always uttered the genuine and disinterested sentiments of his heart. His language, both in writing and speaking, was always simple, and he was extremely fond of idiomatick phrases, which he thought greatly contributed to preserve the purity of our language. He surveyed every subject of importance with a philosophick eye, and was thence enabled to discover and detect latent mischief, concealed under the plausible appearance of publick advantage. Hence all the clamourers for undefined and imaginary liberty, and all those who meditate the subversion of the constitution under the pretext of reform, shrunk from his grasp; and persons of this description were his only enemies. But his dauntless intrepidity, and his noble disdain of vulgar popularity, held up a shield against their malice; and no fear of consequences ever drove him from that manly and honourable course, which the rectitude and purity of

« 前へ次へ »