Biographical Notices of the Portraits at Hinchingbrook by Mary Louisa Boyle

 

BIOGRAPHICAL NOTICES

OF THE

Portraits at Hinchingbrook:

BY
MARY L. BOYLE.

1876.

LONDON:
PRINTED AT THE VICTORIA PRESS, PRAED STREET, W.
(OFFICE FOR THE EMPLOYMENT OF WOMEN.)

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TO
JOHN WILLIAM,
SEVENTH EARL OF SANDWICH,
THESE SKETCHES ARE INSCRIBED BY HIS FAITHFUL KINSWOMAN,
MARY LOUISA BOYLE.
MDCCCLXXVI.

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In the notices of the more celebrated characters in this Catalogue, it will be understood that historical and well-known events (which will be found in the annals of England), have been made purposely, to give way to details of a more domestic nature.

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UPSTAIRS-CORRIDOR, STAIRCASE,
AND
ADJOINING ROOMS.

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Edward, First Earl of Sandwich:

By FELIZIANO.

Three-quarter Length.

(In a long black doublet, with the Star of the Garter, and the Jewel given him by the King of Sweden, over a long white waistcoat with innumerable buttons and gold embroidery; deep ruffles; holds his hat in one hand, the other rests on his hip. Painted during his Embassy in Spain.)

Lord Sandwich is here much altered in appearance from his former portraits, but Pepys tells us he wore his beard in the Spanish fashion on his return from his Embassy; and a French correspondent about this time says: “Le Comte de Sandwich étoit bien fort, l’air doux, assez d’embonpoint, qui ne commençoit de l’incommoder qu’après son retour de l’Espagne.”

Born, 1623. Died, 1672.—The second son of Sir Sidney Montagu, by Paulina, daughter of John Pepys, of Cottenham, near Cambridge. Sidney was the seventh son of Sir Edward Montagu, and brother to the first Lord Montagu[10] of Boughton, was Groom of the Bedchamber to James I., and Master of Requests in the succeeding reign; sat for Huntingdon, and in 1640 was expelled the House for declining to subscribe to an oath framed by the Commons, “that they would live and die with their General, the Earl of Essex.” Montagu said he would not swear to live with Essex, as being an old man he would probably die before him, neither would he swear to die with him, as the Earl was in arms against the King, which he (Sidney) did not know how to separate from treason. For this boldness he was expelled the House by a majority of three, and sent prisoner to the Tower, where he remained a fortnight. Thus did he prove his loyalty, though he had nobly withstood on the other hand those measures which he considered detrimental to the liberties of the subject. He had two sons, and a daughter, married to Sir Gilbert Puckering of Tichmarch, in the County of Hunts. His eldest son Henry was drowned through the carelessness of a nurse, when only three years of age: his second son Edward became his heir; who married before he was[11] twenty, Jemima, daughter of John, Lord Crewe of Stene, a family that sided with the Parliament.

Clarendon tells us, that Sir Sidney Montagu never swerved from his allegiance; but his son being emancipated from his father’s control when very young, and married into a family which “trod awry,” was won over by the “caresses” of Cromwell to take command in his army, when new modelled by Fairfax, Montagu being then little more than twenty years of age. Indeed, when only eighteen he had already raised a regiment, and distinguished himself at its head in several actions, to wit; Lincoln, Marston Moor, and York; and the following year at Naseby, Bridgewater, and Bristol; his conduct at the storming of which last named town was reported to Parliament with the highest encomiums, not only for his gallantry, but for the successful manner in which he carried on the negociations with Prince Rupert. But notwithstanding Montagu’s military zeal, he opposed the undue influence of the army in the House of Commons, especially in their bringing about the seclusion[12] of eleven members, and he formed and kept his resolution not to resume his seat (for Huntingdon) until the members were restored. In spite of this independent conduct, he was appointed (on the elevation of Cromwell to the Protectorate) one of the Supreme Council of Fifteen—and he only then in the twenty-fifth year of his age; and shortly afterwards he became Desborough’s colleague in the office of High Admiral.

In 1656 he accompanied the gallant Blake to the Mediterranean, on whose death he succeeded to the sole command of the fleet, in the exercise of which, says Lord Clarendon, “he was discreet and successful.” But the death of Oliver Cromwell changed the whole face of affairs, and Montagu, who had been on a mission to carry on diplomatic negociations with Sweden and Denmark, returned from Copenhagen (without orders), resigned his command, and retired for a short time into the country. On the reinstalment of the secluded members, he was sworn Privy Councillor, and again appointed Admiral of the Fleet (or as Pepys has it, “one of the generals at sea”), conjointly with Monk,[13] who was minded, as Montagu says, “to get into the saddle,” and would not be left out in anything; but Monk was to remain on shore, and Montagu to put to sea, an arrangement at which the latter did not cavil.

A reaction of loyalty had set in lately; affairs were in a doubtful state; negociations were set on foot to recall Charles; the King’s health was drunk openly, whereas before, it had only been done in private, and Montagu became most zealous in the royal cause, although, as he told his kinsman Pepys, “he did not believe if the Protector [Richard] were brought in again, he would last long, neither the King himself, (although he believes he will come in), unless he behaves himself very soberly and well.” Indeed, before he embarked, Montagu had a conversation with Richard Cromwell in which he told him roundly that he would rather find him (on his return from sea) in his grave, than hatching mischief; upon which that mild man replied that he would do “whatever Montagu, Broghill (afterwards Earl of Orrery) and Monk would have him.”

We now quote constantly from Samuel Pepys,[14] (Montagu’s kinsman and “Boswell”) who had been appointed his secretary, and he says: “Yesterday there were bonfires, and people calling aloud ‘God bless King Charles the Second.’” While the fleet was fitting out, Clarendon records that Montagu sent over his cousin to the King in Holland, to say that as soon as the ships were ready, he would be on board and prepared to receive and obey His Majesty’s commands. He also sent word what officers he trusted, which he suspected, etc., and desired to know privately if Charles had faith in Monk; this was no small inconvenience to the King, seeing he was debarred from communicating to either the trust he had in both, which might have facilitated their designs. Pepys accompanied his patron on board the “Nazeby,” which the youthful Admiral had already commanded with honour, and for which ship “my Lord” (for so Pepys prematurely designated his noble kinsman) “discovered in his discourse a great deal of love.” Again, “a messenger from London brought letters which will make May-day 1660, remembered as the happiest May-day in England for many years.[15] In the House of Parliament a letter from the King had been read, during which time the Members remained uncovered, and an answer of thanks had been returned to His Majesty’s gracious communication, and better still a supply of £50,000 unanimously granted to him. Then the City of London made a declaration that they would have no other Government than King, Lords, and Commons, and ‘both Houses of Parliament did concur in the same.’ My Lord told me plainly that he thought the King would carry it, and that he did think himself happy that he was now at sea, as well for his own sake as that he thought he could do his country some service in keeping things quiet.” About this time, Montagu was elected M.P. for Dover. May 3rd, 1660, a letter and declaration were received on board the “Nazeby” from His Majesty, offering “grace” under certain conditions, and stating the royal wishes and requirements; upon which Admiral Montagu called a Council of War, and dictated to his secretary the form of a vote which was then read and passed unanimously. Afterwards Pepys accompanied “my Lord” to the quarter-deck,[16] and there read the declaration to the ship’s company amid the loud cheers and “God bless King Charles!” of the seamen. After a merry dinner, Pepys took boat and visited every ship in the fleet to make known the royal message, and doubtless it was as he said, “a brave sight and pleasant withal” to be received with “respect and honour” and to bring “joy to all men.” On his return to the “Nazeby,” Montagu was much pleased to hear the fleet received the communication from the King with a transport of joy, and he showed his secretary two private letters that he had received from Charles, and the Duke of York, couched in the most friendly language.

Montagu had now indeed, as Clarendon observes, betaken himself most generously to the King’s service. He was occasionally much tried by the over-interference of his colleague, Monk, “yet was he willing to do him all the honour in the world,” and let him have all the honour of doing the business, though “he will many times express his thoughts of Monk being a thick-skulled fool.” But Monk was most influential, and Montagu, with his wonted[17] magnanimity, sacrificed his own pride to advance the cause of his royal master, and the prosperity of his country. So wise, judicious, and temperate was he, though still young.

He dearly loved his profession, and seemed to take a pride and pleasure in adorning and ornamenting the vessels under his command. “My Lord went about to-day to see what alterations were to be made in the armes and flags, and did give me orders to write for silk flags and scarlet waist-clothes (to be hung round the hull of the ship to protect the men in action) for a rich barge, a noise of trumpets, and a set of fiddlers. He oftentimes played himself on the guitar with much contentment,” and appears to have been as hospitable in his house of wooden walls, as at his fine seat of Hinchingbrook, “receiving the gentlemen who visited him with great civility. Frequent messengers from and to the King at Breda, and divers bearing letters from the Houses of Parliament. On the 9th of May, a certain noble from the House of Lords, to desire my Lord to provide ships for the transport of the Commissioners to His Majesty, who had just been proclaimed in[18] London with great pomp. On the same day the Admiral received his orders to sail presently for the King, a command which he obeyed with alacrity, and of which he was very glad.”

On arriving at the Hague they anchored before that “most neat place in all respects,” where “my Lord” kissed by proxy the hands of the Queen of Bohemia, and the Prince of Orange, sending a deputation on shore including his secretary and youthful son. The Prince of Orange himself, is a “pretty boy.” In the evening “my Lord showed me his fine cloaths, which are as brave as gold and silver can make them.” His royal master appears to have been in a different plight and badly off both for “cloaths” and gold and silver too, and when he received a supply of both his Majesty was so much overjoyed that he called the Princess Royal and the Duke of York to inspect the treasures, as they lay in the portmanteau. The Duke of York was now named High Admiral, and visited the “Nazeby,” (where he was received with due honour), accompanied by the Duke of Gloucester. On the 23rd, the King came off from shore, and entering Montagu’s boat (he[19] having gone off to meet his Majesty), “did kiss my Lord most affectionately.” The two Dukes, the Queen of Bohemia, the Princess Royal, and the Prince of Orange accompanied Charles in his visit to the “Nazeby,” a proud day for Samuel Pepys as well as for the commander; and the “Nazeby” was re-christened “Charles” by her royal Sponsor; and no wonder, for the first name could be in no ways pleasing to any of the parties concerned. And so they set sail for England, “his Majesty walking up and down the quarter-deck, and telling mightily interesting stories of his escape from Worcester, and other adventures.” At Dover the King was received by General Monk with great acclamations, but Montagu remained in his barge, “transported with joy that he had done all this without any the least blur or obstruction in the world.” Two days afterwards he received the Order of the Garter, with which he was invested on shipboard; the like honour being conferred on General Monk, a rare occurrence, as it was seldom given to any one beneath the rank of Earl.

On the Admiral’s arrival in London, he[20] received the Office of the Great Wardrobe, and had the thanks of Parliament for his services and loyalty. Pepys describes with much perspicuity the constant labours in which he and his patron were engaged at the Admiralty, showing that habits of business were a part of this remarkable man’s qualifications, and that in whatever capacity he acted, it was done zealously and diligently. In July 1660, he was raised to the Peerage, by the titles Baron of St. Neots, Viscount Hinchingbrook, and Earl of Sandwich.

He was very merry at the expense of his matter-of-fact secretary when he dined at Whitehall soon after, and “my Lord talked very high how he would have a French cook, and a Master of Horse, and his Lady and child to wear black patches (which methought strange), and when my Lady said she would get a good merchant for her daughter ‘Jem,’ [afterwards Lady Carteret], he said he would rather see her with a pedlar’s pack at her back, than to marry a citizen. But my Lord is become quite a courtier.”

At the coronation of Charles II. my Lord[21] carried the staff of St. Edward, and when he accompanied the King from the Tower to Whitehall, even in “a show so glorious with gold and silver that we were not able to look at it, Lord Sandwich’s embroidery and diamonds were not ordinary;” and afterwards “he talked to me of his coat, which was made in France, and cost £200.” The prudent Pepys occasionally regrets in his patron a magnificence and generosity pushed to extravagance, which indeed caused great anxiety and trouble at different times, not only to himself but to his good wife and housewife, Jemima, and his trusty secretary. Likewise the noble Lord himself confessed, and lamented a taste for card playing.

The marriage of Charles II. with Katherine, daughter of the King of Portugal, being now agreed on, the King chose Lord Sandwich to be his proxy on the occasion, and to fetch over the new Queen from Lisbon, proceeding also to Algiers to settle affairs there. On arriving at Lisbon, Lord Sandwich detached Sir John Lawson, and ordered him to the Mediterranean to curb the insolence of the Corsairs, after[22] which he himself proceeded to Tangiers, where he did some execution on the Turks, and managed his negociations so well, that the place was given up to him by the Portuguese, and Lord Peterborough was appointed Governor. Pains were afterwards taken to preserve the fortress, and a fine mole built: but in 1683, the King sent Lord Dartmouth to bring home the troops and destroy the work, and it fell into the hands of the Moors. There still exists a gate named after Lord Sandwich. “When at Lisbon my Lord sent over presents of mellons and rare grapes to his Countess in London; the grapes so fine that Mistress Pepys packed some up in a basket to send to the King’s Majesty.” Lady Sandwich also received a civet cat, parrot, apes, and many other eccentric proofs of her Lord’s remembrance, which she showed to Mr. Pepys when he dined with her at the Wardrobe.

The ambassador had some trouble with the matrimonial negociations, and “‘great clashing’ with the Portuguese Council, before he could get the portion paid. But the King of Portugall is a very foole almost, and his[23] mother do all, and he is a poore prince.” The Queen was a great recluse on board and would never come on deck, but sent for Lord Sandwich’s “musique,” [he loved a band on board his vessel] and would sit within her cabin listening to it. Pepys did not admire the ladies her Majesty brought over, thought their farthingales a strange dress, and regrets that they have learned to kiss, and look up and down freely, already forgetting the recluse practice of their country. Queen Katherine gave no rewards to any of the captains or officers, save to “my Lord,” but that was an honourable present, a bag of gold worth £1400.

In the same year, 1662, “when the Duke of York went over to fetch the Queen Mother Henrietta Maria, they fell into foul weather and lost their cables, sayles and masts, but Mr. Coventry writes me word they are safe. Only my Lord Sandwich, who went before in the King’s yacht, they know not what is become of him;” which troubles his poor secretary much, “and there is great talk he is lost, but I trust in God the contrary.” A[24] watery grave, indeed, awaited him, but after a nobler fashion. “He carried himself bravely in danger while my Lord Crofts did cry.”

The same faithful chronicler, although uneasy at his Lord’s predilection for play, and for the little regret he evinced at losing £50 to the King at my Lady Castlemaine’s, is never tired of extolling his magnanimity and forbearance, especially in the matter of his kinsman, Mr. Edward Montagu, with whom he had altercations, and “who did revile him to the King,” as was supposed; but “my Lord,” pitied and forgave him. He was an ill-conditioned man, and got into great disfavour at Court, “through his pride and affecting to be great with the Queen.” In 1663, my Lord leased a house in Lincoln’s Inn Fields for £250 per annum. He determined to go to sea once more, and confides to Pepys the state of his finances, having £8000 a year, and being in debt £10,000; but there is much due to him from the Wardrobe. In the middle of this discourse Lady Crewe came in to inform his Lordship another son was born to him, upon which the[25] devout Samuel remarks, “May God send my Lord to study the laying up something for it.”

In the latter days of July 1664, our gallant sailor once more put to sea. The fleet in which he served under the Duke of York was most successful, striking such terror on the coast of Holland that the Dutch Admiral was afraid to venture out. There was also great success with his fleet in the Goree, and 150 ships of the Bordeaux fleet laden with wine brandy, etc., were brought into our ports. In the meantime there were all manner of Cabals at home, not only ignoring Lord Sandwich’s prowess, but impugning his courage and disinterestedness. Pepys is much vexed with the silence maintained on my Lord’s account as regards some of those grand naval victories “to set up the Duke and the Prince, [Rupert] but Mr. Coventry did declare that Lord Sandwich, both in his councils and personal service, had done honourably and serviceably.”

Jealous of his fame at sea and his favour at court, the Admiral’s enemies, with Monk at their head, sought for some pretext to undermine[26] his prosperity, and they hit on the following. It appeared that it was contrary to the strict regulations of the Admiralty that Bulk, as it was called, should be broken into until the captured vessels were brought into port. Now in a noble engagement with the Dutch, Sandwich, Admiral of the Blue Squadron, broke through the enemy’s line, being the first who practised that bold expedient: and he, willing to reward his seamen for their gallant conduct in the action, gave them some portion of the prize money, (which was their due) at sea, not waiting until they had come into port. This was turned to his disadvantage, and his adversaries even dared to insinuate that he had helped himself, as well as his crew. But this accusation was too barefaced, and the King stood by him in these difficult times. Charles II. has often been accused of ingratitude, but at least he never forgot his obligations to, or his personal friendship for, Lord Sandwich, although His Majesty’s unconquerable indolence prevented his influence being as great and decisive as might have been expected in the Monarch of the Realm.

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In the intervals of his employment, Lord Sandwich, who was the fondest of fathers, came up to London frequently to settle the preliminaries of his daughter Jemima’s marriage to the son of Sir George Carteret, an alliance which gave great satisfaction to both families, and the negociations for which were carried on by the indefatigable Pepys. Indeed it was a good thing at that moment to find any cause for rejoicing, as our Diarist’s pages are now full of the record of calamities, caused by the Plague then raging—“no boats on the river, the grass growing up and down Whitehall; all the people panic stricken, and flying from one place to the other for safety”—with innumerable ghastly records of that terrible time.

Lord Sandwich was appointed Ambassador Extraordinary to the Court of Madrid, to mediate a Treaty of Peace between Spain and Portugal. After some conference with the Queen-Regent Mariana, he prevailed with her to acknowledge the King of Portugal, and to agree that the King of England should be Mediator to the Peace. For this purpose he left Madrid and arrived at Lisbon, January 22, 1667.[28] The Peace was concluded in the most satisfactory manner, and the King and the Duke of York wrote Sandwich autograph letters of thanks and commendation. He returned to Spain to take leave of the Queen-Mother, who was most friendly and grateful to the English Envoy, and presented him with full length portraits of herself and her son, the Child-King, painted, says Lord Sandwich, “by her Court painter, Don Sebastian de Herrera, and most excellent likenesses.” The portrait of himself, of which we are now speaking, was also painted during his residence in Spain, and he pronounces that also an excellent resemblance.

Lord Sandwich’s letters show his steady adherence to the Protestant religion, and to the interests of his country: likewise his excellent judgment. He was much opposed to the sale of Dunkirk, and strove to arrest the increasing power of France. In fact, the measures he advocated gained him the good will of the whole fleet and of the disinterested part of the nation, but gave great offence to the Duke of York. In the year 1672, on a new war breaking out with the Dutch, Lord Sandwich served as Vice-Admiral[29] under the man who had become his enemy. On May the 19th, the English fleet, which had been joined by a French squadron, came in sight of the Dutch fleet about eight leagues off Gunfleet, but being separated by hazy weather, the English stood into Southwold Bay, and there anchored till May 28th. Jollity and feasting seem to have been the order of the day on board the English ships, whereupon Lord Sandwich expostulated at such a critical moment, advising that they should stand out to sea, seeing they ran in danger of being surprised by the enemy, as the wind then stood. The Duke of York not only declined to follow this excellent advice, but is said to have returned an insolent and taunting reply. The next day proved the prudence of his wise Admiral’s advice, as the firing of the scout ship’s cannon gave notice of the enemy’s advance. Then the cables were cut and the vessels ranged in as good order as time would permit. Lord Sandwich, in his brave ship the “Royal James,” one hundred guns, sailed almost alone, and was the first to engage the enemy at seven o’clock in the morning: his Royal Highness was the next to fire, his vessel[30] being becalmed; and this sudden calm, combined with the resolution and prompt bravery of Lord Sandwich, saved the fleet, otherwise endangered by the fireships. Interposing between his yet disordered squadron and the “Great Holland,” Captain Brakel, sixty guns, (which was followed by a fireship, and soon seconded by the whole squadron of Van Ghent,) the gallant Englishman defended himself for many hours, disabled several of the enemy’s men-of-war, and sank three of their fireships single handed! while Sir John Jordan, his own Vice-Admiral, and several others, instead of coming to the rescue of the Blue, sailed to the Red to assist the Duke of York. About noon, until which hour he stood at bay like the brave lion that he was, and after giving, as a Dutch historian has it, the utmost proofs of “unfortunate valour,” a fourth fireship, covered by the smoke of the enemy, grappled the “Royal James,” and set her in a blaze. Of one thousand men who formed his crew at the beginning of the action, six hundred were killed on the deck, (among whom was his son-in-law Carteret) many wounded, and only a few escaped. When Lord[31] Sandwich saw it was all over with the “Royal James,” he ordered his first captain, Sir Richard Haddock, the officers, his own servants, etc., into the long-boat, peremptorily declining to leave the ship, in spite of every entreaty: and when the boat pushed off, the noble form of their commander still stood erect on the quarter-deck of the burning vessel. As Sir John Jordan, whose duty it was to relieve him, sailed past in the morning, Lord Sandwich had remarked to the byestanders that if they were not relieved they must fight it out to the last man, and bravely did he keep his word. Thus perished the man whose noble end to a noble life, called forth eulogiums from friend and foe. Bishop Parker, a partisan of the Duke of York, says: “He fell a sacrifice to the service of his country: endued with the virtues of Alcibiades, untainted by his vices; capable of any business; of high birth, full of wisdom, a great commander on sea and land; learned, eloquent, affable, liberal, magnificent.” The Duke of Buckingham, who was in the fleet says: “Lord Sandwich was such a loss, the Dutch might almost have called it a victory.” Gerard Brandt, a Dutchman,[32] says: “He was valiant, intelligent, prudent, civil, obliging in word, and deed, and of great service to his King, not only in war, but in affairs of state and embassies.” We have seen by Pepys’ testimony, how beloved he was in domestic life.

On the 10th of June, his body was found off Harwich, clad in the uniform he had worn with so much honour, still adorned with the insignia of England’s noblest Order, of which he had proved himself so worthy a knight, the gracious form, strange and almost miraculous as it may appear, unblemished in every part, save some marks of fire on the face and hands. Sir Charles Littleton, Governor of Harwich, received the remains, and took immediate care for the embalming and honourably disposing of the same, despatching the master of the vessel who had discovered the body to Whitehall, to present the George belonging to the late Earl, and to learn his Majesty’s pleasure, upon which the King, “out of his regard for the great deservings of the said Earl and his unexampled performances in this last act of his life, (and indeed it might have been said his life[33] throughout) hath resolved to have the body brought to London, there at his charge to receive the rites of funeral due to his quality and merit.” The remains were conveyed to Deptford in one of the royal yachts, and there taken out, and a procession formed of barges, adorned with all the pomp of heraldry, the pride of pageantry, with nodding plumes of sable hue—attended by his eldest son as chief mourner, by eight Earls his peers, by the Lord Mayor and many companies of London, with drums all muffled, and trumpets, and minute guns discharged from the Tower and Whitehall: the body covered by a mourning pall of sumptuous velvet, beneath the shadow of the British Flag under which he had served so long and died so nobly. All that was mortal of Edward Montagu, first Earl of Sandwich, was interred on the north side of the altar in Henry VII.’s chapel in Westminster Abbey, on July 3rd, 1672.

The compass which he wore during the last hours of his glorious life, and the Blue Ribbon which clung to the heart even when it beat no longer, still hang in the same frame with the[34] miniature portraits of himself, and his wife, beside the spirited picture of his last action, by Vandevelde, in the ship-room at Hinchingbrook, where the hero’s name is still revered, and his memory cherished with honest pride by his descendants.

“Pride in the just whose race is run,
Whose memory shall endure,
Binding the line from sire to son
To keep the ’scutcheon pure!”

The Honourable John George Montagu:

By HOPPNER.

Half-Length.

Born, 1767. Died, 1790.—The eldest son of Viscount Hinchingbrook, afterwards fifth Earl of Sandwich, by Lady Elizabeth Montagu, daughter of the Earl of Halifax. In 1790, he married Dorothy, daughter of Stephen Beckenham Esq., and died a few months afterwards at Mrs. Beckenham’s house in Grosvenor Square.


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John Wilmot, Earl of Rochester:

By SIR PETER LELY.

Half-Length.

(Crimson Robe, over a Cuirass.)


John Wilmot, Earl of Rochester:

By WISSING.

Three-quarter Length.

(In Armour, holding a Truncheon.)

Born, 1648. Died, 1680.—Son of the second Earl, by Anne, daughter of Sir John St. John Bart., and widow of Sir Harry Lee, of Ditchley. The father, a staunch Royalist, died before the Restoration, and left his son little inheritance beyond his title; but that little was well and carefully managed by the widowed mother. Rochester distinguished himself at[36] school, and also at the University, and although he fell into bad habits in early life, he always retained a love of learning which was most beneficial to him in his latter days. He travelled under the care of a learned Scotchman, Dr. Balfour, whose name he never mentioned without affection. He distinguished himself in several naval engagements under the brave Earl of Sandwich and other commanders, and married Elizabeth, daughter of John Mallet, Esq., “the beautiful heiress,” who, after supping with Mistress Stewart, was quietly returning to her lodgings when she was seized upon at Charing Cross by some emissaries of my Lord of Rochester. The lady did not incline to his suit, although it would appear the King himself had spoken to her in behalf of his favourite. But this violence so incensed his Majesty, that he ordered my Lord Rochester to the Tower, and there seemed every chance of his being supplanted by his numerous rivals. Pepys does not tell us how the adventurous lover at length prevailed on the lady to accept his hand, but he enumerates “Mistress Mallet’s servants:”[37] “My Lord Herbert,” [afterwards 6th Earl of Pembroke,] “who would have had her, my Lord Hinchingbrook, who was indifferent to her, my Lord John Butler [son of the Duke of Ormond] who might not have her, Sir … Popham who would do anything to have her, and my Lord Rochester, who would have run away with her.” Verily, she made a bad choice among so many.

Lord Rochester was remarkable for his wit, but also for the extreme licentiousness of his manners and writings. He was a great satirist and had many readers in an age when grossness of style was not only tolerated but admired. His Poem on “Nothing,” and the satire against Man, showed great ability, lavished on a bad cause. Of an elegant person, easy address, and winning manners, he was, indeed, a dangerous companion, and his profligacy was notorious, even in the reign of Charles II. He was a great favourite with his royal master, who delighted in his sallies, and declared he preferred Rochester’s company, even when he was drunk, to that of any other man, when sober. In his pursuits after adventures he[38] would assume all sorts of disguises, sometimes that of a beggar, or porter, or even a quack doctor; and he well knew how to sustain every kind of character. Horace Walpole says of him, “the Muses loved to inspire him, but were ashamed to avow him.” De Grammont said he had more wit, and less honour than any man in England.

But it was reserved for Bishop Burnet, in whose society and conversation he fortunately took great delight, to effect a radical change in the opinions of a man whom the Divine himself had always declared born for better things. By gentle forbearance, considerate kindness, and honest candid friendship, Dr. Burnet brought the suffering and unhappy man, to a sense of the error of his ways, and the letter the Bishop received from the penitent shortly before the death of the latter, is most conclusive on this head:

“Woodstock Park, June 25, 1680.

“My most honoured Dr. Burnet,

“My spirits and body cling so equally together, that I shall write you a letter as weak as I am in person. I begin to value Churchmen above all men in the world. If God[39] be yet pleased to spare me longer in this world, I hope in your conversation to be exalted to that degree of piety, that the world may see how much I abhor what I so long loved, and how much I glory in repentance, and in God’s service. Bestow your prayers upon me that God would spare me (if it be His good will) to show a true repentance and amendment of life for the time to come, or else, if the Lord please to put an end to my worldly being now, that He would mercifully accept of my death-bed repentance, and perform His promise that He has been pleased to make, that at what time soever a sinner doth repent, He would receive him. Put up these prayers then, dear Doctor, to Almighty God, for your most obedient, and languishing servant,

Rochester.”

During his last, and most painful illness, he listened with meek deference to the exhortations of many godly men, and received the Sacrament with his Lady, which he told Dr. Burnet gave him the more satisfaction, as for a time she had been misled by the errors of the Church of Rome.

Towards the wife who had so much cause of complaint against him he expressed the sincerest affection and contrition, so much so as to call forth the most passionate grief on her side. He took leave of all, sent messages to many of[40] his thoughtless comrades, hoping that as his life had done much hurt, so by the mercy of God his death might do some good; called often for his children, his young son, and three daughters, thanked God in their presence for the blessing they were to him; and died quietly, and peacefully at the last, after suffering terrible anguish of body, on the morning of the 26th of July, 1680, at the Ranger’s Lodge at Woodstock.


Frances, Lady Carteret:

By SIR GODFREY KNELLER.

Three-quarter Length.

(In a White Dress, playing on a Spinnet.)

Born, 1694. Died, 1713.—The daughter of Sir Robert Worsley, of Appledurcombe, Isle of Wight, by Frances, only daughter and heiress of the first Viscount Weymouth. Married in 1710 at Longleat, the seat of her grandfather, to John, Lord Carteret, great grandson of the[41] first Earl of Sandwich, Ambassador Extraordinary to the Court of Sweden, principal Secretary of State, and Lord Lieutenant of Ireland, and one of the Chief Justices for England, during the Sovereign’s absence beyond seas; in fact the holder of many offices and dignities which he filled with honour. Lady Carteret accompanied her husband when he attended the Queen to Hanover, and in that city she died, quite suddenly, while playing on the harp. She was a friend and correspondent of Jonathan Swift.


Charles, Lord Wilmot:

By HAWKER.

Half-Length: Oval.

(A Boy in a Blue Mantle.)

Born, ——. He was the only son of John, Earl of Rochester. Died in 1681, a minor and unmarried, when the title became extinct. With[42] all his faults Lord Rochester appears to have loved his only boy tenderly, and to have earnestly desired to keep him from the evils into which he himself had fallen. The following letter addressed by the father to the son is a touching proof of these better feelings:

“To my Lord Wilmot:—

I hope, Charles, when you receive this and know that I have sent this gentleman to be your tutor, you will be very glad to see I take such care of you, and be very grateful, which is the best way of showing your obedience. You are now grown big enough to be a man, if you are wise enough, and the way to be truly wise, is to serve God, learn your books, observe the instructions of your parents first, and next your Tutor, to whom I have entirely resigned you for these seven years, and according as you employ that time you are to be happy or unhappy for ever. But I have so good an opinion of you that I am glad to think you will never deceive me. Dear child, learn your book and be obedient, and you shall see what a father will be to you. You shall want no pleasure, while you are good, and that you may be so is my constant prayer.

Rochester.


[43]

Lady Brooke:

By KNELLER.

Half-Length.

(Blue Dress.)

This portrait has no name in the original catalogue, but it appears almost certain that it represents the Lady Anne Wilmot, eldest daughter of the Earl of Rochester, and sister to Lady Lisburne, and Elizabeth, Countess of Sandwich. She married Francis Greville, son and heir to Lord Brooke (he died in 1710, eleven days before his father), by whom she had Fulke, who succeeded his grandfather in the title, William, and two daughters.


Viscountess Lisburne:

By KNELLER.

Half-Length.

(Loose Blue Dress, Blue Veil.)

Born, ——. Died, 1716.—Lady Mallet Wilmot, was the third and youngest daughter, and[44] co-heiress, of John, Earl of Rochester, by Elizabeth, daughter of John Mallet, Esq. She married John Vaughan, Esq., afterwards created Baron Feathard and Viscount Lisburne, County Antrim, Ireland. They had two sons and several daughters. Lord Lisburne died in 1721.


Lady Anne Montagu:

By KNELLER.

Three-quarter Length.

(Oval. As a Child, White Dress.)

Born, 1674. Died, 1746.—Daughter of Ralph, Duke of Montagu, by his first wife. Married first, Alexander Popham, Esq., and secondly, her cousin, Lieutenant-General Daniel Harvey, Governor of Guernsey.


[45]

Jemima, First Countess of Sandwich:

By ADRIAN HANNEMANN.

Half-Length.

(Blue Satin Dress. Scarf in the Left Hand.)

The eldest daughter of John, first Baron Crewe of Skene, North Hants, by Jemima, daughter and co-heiress of Edward Waldegrave, Esq., Co. Essex. Married in 1642, to Edward Montagu, first Earl of Sandwich, by whom she had five sons and four daughters.

That useful gossip Pepys was very proud of his acquaintance with Lady Sandwich and he seems to have neglected no opportunity of getting news for his “Chronicle,” from her, as well as from her housekeeper, Sarah, who knew a great deal about Court matters and was most communicative, particularly in affairs of scandal. His first mention of Lady Sandwich is where he goes to dine with her and tell her the news (by order of Sir William[46] Pen,) how that “an expresse had come from my Lord [then with the fleet] that by a great storm and tempest the mole at Argier had been broken down and several of our ships sunk,” and he thanks God, “that unlucky business is ended.” In another dinner at the “Wardrobe,” my Lady showed him a civet cat, parrot, and ape, which her Lord had sent her as a present from beyond seas. Her Ladyship, moreover seems to have taken Mr. Pepys into her councils, as regarded matrimonial alliances for her daughters, as we find him commissioned to inquire into the estate of Sir George Carteret, whose son Phillip was a suitor for my Lady Jemima, a marriage which afterwards took place, and every particular of which is detailed with a great sense of reflected importance by Pepys “who wore his new coloured silk suit on the occasion.” He assisted Lady Sandwich to settle accounts at that time, and he does not forget to inform us that he was invited down to Hinchingbrook, to keep her company, “so mighty kind is my Lady; but for my life I could not.”

On the 28th of May, 1665, he goes to my[47] Lady Sandwich’s, “where to my shame I had not been a long time,” primed with a highly spiced story of “how my Lord of Rochester had run away with Mistress Mallet, the great beauty and fortune of the north,” and he found Lady Sandwich both interested and distressed by the news, as she had intended the fair heiress for her son, Hinchingbrook; and even now, she hoped the match might be broken off between the lady, and Lord Rochester, in which particular she was disappointed. But strangely enough, the daughter of the run-away couple did, unfortunately for her poor husband, become Countess of Sandwich.

Pepys goes all alone with my Lady to Dagenham, near Romford, in Essex, where Lady Jemima Carteret and her husband resided: “and a pleasant going it was, very merry, and the young couple well acquainted; but Lord! to see what fear all the people here do live in”—on account of the Plague. Two years afterwards we find our Chronicler walking up from Brampton, where he resided for some time, to Hinchingbrook, to spend the afternoon with that most excellent discreet and good lady, who[48] was mightily pleased, as she informed him, with the lady who was to be her son Hinchingbrook’s wife. He found the two Ladies Montagu “grown proper ladies and handsome enough;” and the Countess, as was often the case, conferred with Mr. Pepys on financial matters, complaining they were much straitened in circumstances, and she had had to part with some valuable plate, and one of the best suites of hangings. We are assured by the same gentleman that “the House of Hinchingbrook is excellently furnished, with brave rooms and good pictures,” and that “it pleased infinitely beyond Audley End.”

Lady Sandwich died at the house of her daughter, Lady Anne Edgecumbe, at Cothele, County Devon, and was buried at Carstock, in Cornwall. The children of the first Earl and Countess of Sandwich were: Edward, who succeeded as second Earl; Sydney, who married the daughter and heiress of Sir Francis Wortley, of Wortley, County York, which patronymic he assumed, and was father-in-law to the famous Lady Mary Wortley Montagu; Oliver, who died unmarried, aged 38; John, in[49] Holy Orders, died unmarried, aged 73; Charles married first, Elizabeth, daughter of Francis Forster, and secondly, Sarah, daughter of —— Rogers, of Newcastle-on-Tyne, Esq., by both of whom he left issue. The daughters: Jemima, married to Sir Philip Carteret, who fell with his father-in-law in the battle of Southwold Bay, May, 1672, in consideration of whose services the King elevated his son George to the peerage, as Baron Carteret; Paulina, who died unmarried; Anne, married to Sir Richard Edgecumbe, by whom she was mother of the first Lord Edgecumbe, of Mount Edgecumbe, County Devon; she was married secondly, to Christopher Montagu, brother to the Earl of Halifax, and died in 1727; Catherine, married to Nicholas, son and heir to Sir Nicholas Bacon, of Shrubland Hall, Suffolk, and afterwards to the Rev. Mr. Gardeman. She died at the age of ninety-six.


[50]

Edward, First Earl of Sandwich:

By ADRIAN HANNEMANN.

Half-Length.

(In Armour. Badge of the Order of the Garter, or lesser George, suspended from the Neck by Gold Chain, Lace Cravat, Long Hair.)


Elizabeth, Viscountess Hinchingbrook:

By KNELLER.

Three-quarter Length.

(Seated, holding a Book. White Satin Dress. Blue Ribbon in Front.)

Born, ——. Died, 1761.—The only daughter of Alexander Popham, Esq., of Littlecote, Wilts, by Lady Anne, daughter of Ralph, Duke of Montagu. She married firstly, Viscount Hinchingbrook, only son of Edward, third Earl[51] of Sandwich, by whom she had John, who succeeded his grandfather as fourth Earl, Edward, and William; and two daughters, Mary and Elizabeth. Lady Hinchingbrook married secondly, Francis Seymour, Esq., of Sherborne, Dorset, by whom she had two sons and one daughter.

She died at her house in Charles Street, Berkeley Square, and was buried in South Audley Street Chapel.


The Hon. Richard Montagu:

By RILEY.

Half-Length.

(Oval. Crimson Dress. Lace Cravat.)

Born, 1671. Died, 1697.—The second son of the second Earl of Sandwich, by Lady Anne Boyle, daughter of the Earl of Burlington. He was M.P. for Huntingdon. Died unmarried.


[52]

Edward, First Earl of Sandwich:

By SIR PETER LELY.

Half-Length.

(Star of the Order of the Garter on Shoulder.)


Edward Richard, Viscount Hinchingbrook:

By SIR GODFREY KNELLER.

Half-Length.

(Oval. Blue Jacket, and Velvet Cap. Hand resting on Hip.)


John, Earl of Rochester:

By WISSING.

Three-quarter Length.

(In Armour, with Crimson Robe. Lace Cravat.)


[53]

Elizabeth, Countess of Burlington:

By SIR PETER LELY.

Three-quarter Length.

(Standing by an Arch. Dark Dress with Pearls; Dark Blue Scarf over the Shoulder. Holding a Wreath of Flowers.)

The only daughter and heiress of Henry Clifford, Earl of Cumberland. Married Richard, Viscount Dungarvan, eldest son of the great Earl of Cork, at Skipton Castle, in Craven, 1635. Lord Dungarvan was distinguished for loyalty and bravery, in common with his father and brothers. In 1642, he and the Lord Inchiquin defeated the Irish army near Liscarrol, on which occasion the Earl of Cork’s four sons were engaged on the royal side, and Viscount Kynalmeakey was slain. After many successes Lord Dungarvan carried over his forces to England, on the cessation of arms in Ireland. In 1643, he landed with them near Chester, and subsequently joined his Sovereign in the County of Dorset, when by reason of his[54] services, and his marriage with the daughter and heiress of the Earl of Cumberland, Lord Cork (he had succeeded his father in the Irish title) was created Baron Clifford, of Lanesborough, Co. York.

On the triumph of the Parliamentary cause he went beyond seas, but he promoted the restoration of Charles II., and was advanced to the dignity of Earl of Burlington, Co. York. Lord Burlington died in the 86th year of his age, and by Elizabeth his wife he had two sons, and five daughters, the fourth of whom, Lady Anne, married Edward, second Earl of Sandwich, a match which Pepys much approved. He speaks of an interview with Lady Burlington at Burlington House, where he first saw and saluted her: “A very fine speaking lady and brave, and a good woman, but old and not handsome.” Perhaps Master Samuel was not at that moment in a humour to be pleased, as, “bringing in a candle to seal a letter, they set fire to my perriwigg, which made an odd noise.”


[55]

Edward, First Lord Montagu of Boughton:

Half-Length.

(In Peer’s Parliamentary Robes. Holding in his Hand the Badge of the Order of the Bath suspended from his Neck.)

Born, ——. Died, 1644.—The eldest son of Sir Edward Montagu, of Boughton, North Hants, by Elizabeth, daughter of Sir James Harrington, of Exton, Rutland, Knight, by whom he had eight sons and three daughters: the third son, Henry, being ancestor to the Dukes of Manchester and the Earls of Halifax: and the sixth, Sidney, to the Earls of Sandwich. Edward, the eldest, was also Knighted of the Shire, and then created Knight of the Bath at the coronation of James I, he did good service in Parliament; was much opposed to Popish doctrines, was one of the first named on the committee to consider the confirmation of the Book of Common Prayer, and many weighty matters, was the principal promoter of keeping[56] a day of public thanksgiving on the 5th of November, in remembrance of the failure of the Gunpowder Plot, on which day he also instituted a charitable gift of “forty shillings yearly to the world’s end,” to be given to the poor of certain towns in Northamptonshire, if present at Divine Service the same day. He was advanced to the dignity of Baron Montagu, of Boughton, for his services and great abilities, in the nineteenth year of the reign of James I. He was remarkable for his piety, not only attending constantly and punctually at church, but having regular prayers on week days, “as also singing of two psalms after supper in the hall in his own house.” He was a patron to men of letters and learning, showing great discrimination in his choice of bestowal of livings in his gift, and “an enemy to pluralities and non-residency.” Not only did he do good “to the good to make them better, but also to the bad to keep them from worse.” It is scarcely credible how many poor as well as rich he fed. It is reported that a hired coachman of London, who had been at my Lord’s house, told on his return that he had seen 1200 people[57] served in a day at my Lord Montagu’s door, which was not credited, and a wager of £10 laid. It was brought to trial and proved. He built a fair Hospital at Weekly for eight persons, with a liberal allowance, and a blue gown to each every second year.

But this good and noble Peer fell into misfortune through his loyalty to King Charles I., and Lord Clarendon relates that the Parliament took him prisoner at his House of Boughton, “a person of great reverence above fourscore years of age, and of unblemished reputation, because he declared himself unsatisfied with their disobedient proceedings towards the King.”

Sir Philip Warwick also says: “The family of Montagu is noble and worthy. It had six brothers, four remarkable for several qualifications; the eldest, Lord Montagu, a man of plain, downright English spirit, of steady courage and a devout heart, a son of the Church of England, yet so devout that he was by some reckoned among the Puritans.” He was a great benefactor to the town of Northampton, (being Lord Lieutenant of the County), and[58] he bore such sway there, that “the multitude of vulgars flocked about him when he came to town, as if he had been their topical deity.” When he was taken prisoner on his road to London, he met my Lord Essex at Barnet, who was proceeding with the army against the King. That nobleman stopped his coach, intending to go and salute Lord Montagu, who presently ordered his coachman to drive on, as this was no time for compliments. When brought before the Committee of State, where he pleaded nobly, the verdict was that he should be detained a prisoner, but that it might be in his own daughter’s house. This he utterly refused, saying, that if he deserved to be a prisoner, he deserved to be sent to a prison, and that he would not be sent to the house of the Countess of Rutland, which would be irksome to him, that lady being busy in the Parliament’s cause—unless the warrant named her house as his prison; “whereat the Countess was much disgruntled.”

Lord Montagu was accordingly conveyed to the Savoy, near the Strand, in the suburbs of London, where he departed this life on the[59] 15th of June, 1644. He was thrice married; first to Elizabeth, daughter and heiress of Sir John Jeffrey, of Chitingley, Sussex, Knight, Lord Chief Baron of the Exchequer, by whom he had an only daughter; secondly, to Frances, daughter of Thomas Cotton, of Connington, Hunts, by whom he had a son who died unmarried, Edward his successor, William, and the aforesaid Countess of Rutland; thirdly, to Anne Crouch, of Cornbury, Herts, by whom he had no issue.

Lord Montagu was grandfather to Ralph, first Duke of Montagu. He was interred in Weekly Church, Northamptonshire, where a splendid monument commemorates his many virtues.


Mrs. Elizabeth Cromwell:

By WALKER.

Half-Length.

(Green Cardinal edged with Gold, fastened in Front with a Jewel. White Satin Hood, White Tippet, Pearl Necklace.)

[60]

Born, ——. Died, 1654.—Daughter of William Stewart, Esq., through whom she claimed distant kinship with the King of England. Widow of William Lynne, of Basingbourne; married Robert Cromwell, Esq., by whom she had four sons, of whom only one, Oliver, grew up to manhood, and six daughters. On the death of her husband she continued the Brewery, out of the profits of which and a scanty pittance of £60 a year, she gave her numerous daughters a good education, and dowries on their marriage, “with which they were not ashamed to ally themselves with good families.” Mrs. Cromwell was indeed a most exemplary and loveable woman; of an angelic temper and disposition, yet full of self-help, she retained the simple tastes and gentle humanity which had characterised her in the Brewery, at Huntingdon, when transplanted, by her son’s wish, to the splendour of the Palace at Whitehall, where her life was fretted by her anxiety for the safety of her beloved son. Oliver’s filial duty was undeniable: he appreciated to the utmost his mother’s excellent qualities; and on her death he caused[61] her to be buried with great pomp in Westminster Abbey, though her tastes would have pointed to a quiet funeral, in a country churchyard, where her remains would have been left unmolested. At the Restoration her body was dug up, and with many others, cast ignominiously into a hole.

In one of the many “Lives of the Protector,” the portrait at Hinchingbrook is alluded to as most characteristic. “The small pretty mouth, the full large melancholy eyes, the fair hair under the modest little hood, the simple but refined dress with the one small jewel clasping her handkerchief.” The same writer speaking of her says: “Her single pride was honesty, her passion love.”


William Laud, Archbishop of Canterbury:

A Copy of Vandyck in Lambeth Palace.

By STONE.

Three-quarter Length.

Born at Reading, 1573.—Beheaded, 1645.[62] Son of a clothier. Fellow of St. John’s College, Oxford. He afterwards took Orders, and was very vehement against the Puritans. Had many different livings; became Chaplain to James I., whom he accompanied to Scotland. Became Prebendary of Westminster, and consecutively Bishop of St. Davids, Bath and Wells, and London, and subsequently Prime Minister and Archbishop of Canterbury. In 1622 he held a famous conference with Fisher the Jesuit in the presence of the Duke of Buckingham and his mother, who were wavering in their allegiance to the Protestant faith, and were fixed therein by the eloquence of Laud. He was more than once tempted to abjure his own religion by the offer of a Cardinal’s hat, but each time he gave an emphatic denial. He was very strict in requiring the revision and licensing of published books by high ecclesiastical authority, and concerned in several prosecutions of the Star Chamber against Bishop Williams, the master of Westminster School, &c.

When the Parliament of 1639 was abruptly dissolved, the odium of the measure was thrown[63] on Laud, and he was attacked in his Palace at Lambeth by the mob. The execution of Strafford was the forerunner of his own; he had made himself unpopular with the Nation and with the Commons, and on the accusation of Sir Henry Vane, he was sent to the Tower in 1641, where he was detained for three years and treated with much severity. In 1644 he was tried, and though nothing treasonable was proved, a bill of attainder was passed. He made an eloquent defence, but all in vain, and he suffered death on Tower Hill in 1645, displaying great courage. Clarendon says: “His learning, piety, and virtue, have been attained by few, and the greatest of his infirmities are common to all men.”

Of all the Prelates of the Anglican Church, Macaulay says that Laud departed farthest from the principles of the Reformation and nearest to Rome. He hated Calvinism, he had a passion for forms and ceremonies, disapproved of the marriage of ecclesiastics; all which opinions would have made him detested by the Puritans, even if he had used legal and gentle means only for the attainment of his[64] ends. His understanding was narrow, he had but scanty knowledge of the world under his direction; every corner of the realm, every separate congregation, even the devotions of private families were subjected to the vigilance of his spies. Unfortunately for himself and for the country, the King was influenced in all public matters by the counsels of the Primate.


Robert Cromwell:

By WALKER.

Half-Length.

(Black Gown, White Collar, Black Skull Cap.)

Born, ——. Died, 1617.—The second son of Sir Henry Cromwell, Knight (surnamed the Golden Knight) of Hinchingbrook, Huntingdon, by Joan, daughter of Sir Ralph Warren, Lord Mayor of London. A younger son with a slender pittance, he was, by the countenance of his brother, Sir Oliver, made Justice of the Peace. He went, on his marriage, to live in[65] the town of Huntingdon, at a house which had been a Brewery for many years, and the business of which he thought it prudent to continue with the help and good management of his wife, Elizabeth, daughter of William Stewart, of Ely, undoubted descendant of the royal line of Stewart; a connection on which the Protector, with the inconsistency he often evinced in such matters, prided himself highly. Robert Cromwell’s immediate ancestors were of a Welsh family named Williams, one of whom married the sister of Cromwell, Earl of Essex, Prime Minister to Henry VIII., whose son having risen into favour at Court and received the grant of several Church lands near Huntingdon, fixed his residence in that town, and assumed the name of Cromwell. In a tournament at Westminster, on May Day, 1540, where Sir Richard Cromwell had stricken down challenger after challenger in honour of his King; Henry VIII., in high good humour, called out: “Formerly thou wast my Dick, but hereafter thou shalt be my diamond,” at the same moment dropping a diamond ring, which the knight picked up and restored to his[66] Majesty. “No,” said Henry, laughing, and placing it on his favourite’s finger: “henceforth thou shalt bear such an one in the forejamb of the demi-lion in thy crest;” and such a ring, says one of his chroniclers, did Oliver wear when he entered the lists against his lawful sovereign.

“Mr. Cromwell and his wife,” we are told by the same biographer, “were persons of worth, in no way inclined to disaffection, civil or religious; they lived on a small pittance, and brought up their children well, through the exercise of honest frugality.” Robert Cromwell died at Cromwell House, Huntingdon, in 1617, and was buried at All Saints Church in that town. His widow survived him 37 years.


Portrait of a Dark Youth in Armour: Unnamed.


Three Portraits Unnamed.


[67]

Elizabeth, Countess of Northumberland:

By SIR PETER LELY.

Three-quarter Length.

(Auburn Ringlets. Orange Satin Gown with Pearls. Right Hand holding her Dress.)

Born, 1647. Died, 1690.—Elizabeth Wriothesley was the youngest daughter of Lord Treasurer Southampton, by Lady Elizabeth Leigh, sole daughter and heiress of the Earl of Chichester. Her eldest sister, Lady Audrey, was betrothed to Josceline, Lord Percy, son of the tenth Earl of Northumberland, but dying before her fifteenth year was completed, the name of her sister was substituted for hers (by family arrangement) in the marriage contract. In the year 1662, Elizabeth being then about fifteen, and Lord Percy barely 18, the marriage was solemnised. The bride’s sister, Lady Rachel Russell, observes it was acceptance rather than choice; yet the union proved very happy. At first the young pair were not much together; the bridegroom remained with his[68] tutor, and the bride with her parents, at Titchfield, in Hampshire; but in 1664-5, her letters to Lady Rachel are dated from Petworth, where she was living with her husband. She had a daughter born in 1666, and a son and heir in 1668; in 1669, another daughter, who died an infant. Lord Percy succeeded his father in 1668, and the following year their son died, which made so sad an impression on Lady Northumberland, then just recovering from her confinement, that change of scene was considered necessary for her, and she left England for Paris with her husband and the celebrated Locke (as their physician), in whose care Lord Northumberland left his wife while he proceeded to Italy. At Turin he was attacked by fever, and died in the flower of his age, a brilliant future lying before him, with every prospect of happiness.

Lady Northumberland remained at Paris, where Ralph, Lord Montagu, was then Ambassador, and he soon became attracted by the beautiful young widow, paying her gradual and delicate attentions; but it was two years before he ventured to pronounce himself[69] her ardent admirer. In the winter of 1672 she went to Aix, where Montagu followed her. Madame de la Fayette writes: “Je vous envoie un paquet pour Madame de Northumberland; on dit que si M. de Montagu n’a pas eu un heureux succès de son voyage, il passera en Italie pour faire voir que ce ne’est pas pour les beaux yeux de la Comtesse qu’il court le pays.”

But it seems he followed her back to Paris, in spite of those predictions. In another letter from Madame de la Fayette, she writes: “Madame de Northumberland me parait une femme qui a été fort belle, mais qui n’a pas un seul trait de visage qui se soutienne, ni oû il soit resté le moindre air de jeunesse; elle est avec cela mal habillée, point de grâce, etc.” She also alludes to her understanding, what Madame de la Fayette said to her as if her knowledge of the French language was limited. The same writer says: “J’ai fort parlé d’elle à Montagu; il ne fait aucun façon d’étre embarqué à son service, et parait rempli d’espérance.” (April 15, 1673.)

There were as usual fluctuations in his hopes and fears, the lady being at one time[70] jealous, we are told, of the Duchesse de Brissac, a former “flame” of the Ambassador’s; but in 1673 they came to England, and were privately married at Titchfield, Lady Northumberland’s paternal home. Evelyn talks of her eight, or even ten years after this, as the “beautiful Countess,” a testimony we accept more willingly than that of the fault-finding Madame de la Fayette. She was in England in 1675, and was at issue for some time with the Dowager Countess of Northumberland, her mother-in-law, respecting the care and guardianship of Lady Elizabeth Percy, the only surviving child and heiress of the late Earl; the subject of the girl’s marriage, and the choice of a husband being a great bone of contention. Lady Rachel Russell says: “My sister urges that her only child should not be disposed of without her consent, and in my judgment it is hard, yet I fancy I am not partial.” The old lady was triumphant, however, and contrived to get the young heiress into her power, or rather to assert her power over her fortunes, and Elizabeth Percy had the strange fate of being three times a wife, and twice a widow ere she was sixteen.[71] She married, when only thirteen, Cavendish, Duke of Newcastle, who immediately assumed the name and arms of Percy; but he died a few months after his marriage, in 1680. The child-widow had then among many other suitors, Count Königsmark, the celebrated adventurer, and Thomas Thynne, of Longleat, to whom her grandmother hastened to betroth her, lest she should show a preference for the foreigner. But before the marriage could be actually solemnized, he was murdered in his coach at the instigation of his rival; and the beautiful heiress married shortly afterwards the sixth Duke of Somerset, surnamed the Proud.

The girl’s mother does not seem to have been consulted in any of these matchmakings; her own married life was not a happy one. Montagu was boundlessly extravagant; he was now occupied in building Montagu House with his wife’s money; he was involved in political intrigues which did not redound to his honour, and in 1678 he went to Paris on his astrological mission, and renewed his loves and quarrels with the Duchess of Cleveland and others. He returned to England, to involve himself in[72] fresh plots, and in 1680, accompanied by his wife, he went to Paris in disgrace and pecuniary difficulties; circumstances not calculated to improve a temper naturally irritable.

Lady Rachel Russell often speaks of her sister when in Paris; of that lady’s sympathy with the Protestants after the Revocation of the Edict of Nantes; her anxiety on account of her daughter, Anne Montagu’s, health, etc. A year afterwards she lost her eldest son, aged 12; and it must have been a source of regret that she was not at hand to comfort Lady Rachel in the hour of her sorrow, Lord William Russell’s execution taking place while his sister-in-law was still in Paris. On Lady Northumberland’s return to England, we hear of her at Windsor with her “lovely boy,” and little Anne. On her husband’s creation as Earl, his wife dropped her widowed title, and called herself Countess Montagu. After the Revolution, Lord and Lady Montagu spent most of their time at Boughton, at which place the latter died in September, 1690, aged forty-four.

Lady Rachel Russell speaks thus of her[73] death: “She was my last sister, and I loved her tenderly. It pleases me to think she deserves to be remembered by all who knew her; but after 40 years’ acquaintance with so amiable a creature, one must needs, in reflecting, bring to remembrance so many engaging endearments as are at present embittering and painful.”

One son and one daughter survived; John, Lord Monthermer, afterwards second Duke of Montagu; and Anne, mother to the Lady Hinchingbrook, by whose Will this picture was bequeathed to her son, the fourth Earl of Sandwich.


Edward, first Earl of Sandwich:

By SIR PETER LELY.

Three-quarter Length.

(Buff Coat and Cuirass. Lace Cravat and Ruffles. Blue Sash over the Shoulder. Broad Red Sash round the Waist. Right Hand holding a Truncheon, which rests on the Mouth of a Cannon; Left Hand on his Hip.)


[74]

Ralph, Duke of Montagu:

By RILEY.

Three-quarter Length.

(Curled Wig. Loose Gown of Orange Silk.)

Born, ——. Died, 1708. The only surviving son of Edward, second Lord Montagu of Boughton, by Anne, daughter of Sir Ralph Winwood. He was educated at Westminster and on the death of his elder brother succeeded him as Master of the Horse to Queen Catherine, Consort of Charles II. He was sent as Ambassador to Paris, in 1669, for which office, says a contemporary, he was more indebted to the partiality of the fair sex, than to his own merits. He told Sir William Temple he was resolved to become Ambassador in France, and Sir William asked him on what he founded his hopes, as neither the King nor the Duke of York were attached to him. “They shall act” said Montagu, “as if they were;” upon which Sir William Temple remarks that his appointment was[75] brought about by the favour of the ladies, who were always his best friends, for some perfection the rest of the world did not discover.

He was famous when in France, for the state in which he lived. “He entered Paris,” (says Collins) “with a more than common appearance, having seventy-four pages and footmen in rich liveries, twelve led horses with their furniture, twenty-four gentlemen on horseback, and eighteen English noblemen and gentlemen of quality in four rich coaches with eight horses each, and two chariots with six, made as costly as art could contrive.” The King and the Duke of Orleans received him with great honour, and he was entertained both at St. Cloud and Versailles, the fountains of which played in his honour; and it was here he imbibed a taste for building and laying out gardens, which he afterwards indulged to a great extent. The beautiful and youthful Countess of Northumberland, who had lately become a widow, was residing in Paris, and as we mention in the notice of her life, Montagu became her suitor, and eventually her husband. They were married privately in England in[76] 1673. After his marriage he became a Privy Councillor and Master of the Great Wardrobe, an office he bought of the Earl of Sandwich. He busied himself in building on a magnificent scale, and found his wife’s money most useful to him in carrying out his plans.

Although already rather in disrepute at Court, King Charles II. did not disdain to employ Montagu in 1678 on a new, and in every sense of the word, extraordinary mission to Paris. At that time there resided in the French capital, an astrologer who had gained great credit by predicting, not only the restoration of the English Monarch, but the exact date, May 29, 1660, of his return to England, and that some time before it actually happened. Charles, in consequence, had the firmest belief in the wise man’s auguries, and he despatched Montagu on an errand to ask his advice and predictions on some subject of political importance. The Envoy-extraordinary sounded the Necromancer, and finding the black art did not blind its professor to self-interest, the King’s messenger offered the wise man a large bribe to shape his predictions according to his[77] (Montagu’s) directions; then, with an imprudence which was inconsistent with his previous cunning, he went off to the Duchess of Cleveland and confided his secret to her. But Barbara was angry with her former admirer, and jealous of his admiration for her own daughter, and she resolved to be revenged. Accordingly she wrote to the King and told him the whole story. “Montagu,” she says, “has neither conscience nor honour; he has told me several times he despises you in his heart, and that he wishes the Parliament would send you and your brother to travel, for you are a dull, ungovernable fool, and he is a wilful fool.” This version of the story is taken from Algernon Sidney’s correspondence.

In consequence of this letter Montagu was recalled, and found himself but coldly received at Court, and all hopes of a place under Government were at an end. The ex-Plenipotentiary now threw himself into all manner of contending intrigues of a political nature. He was accused of receiving a large bribe from Louis XIV. to compass the impeachment and ruin of Lord Danby (Treasurer) who was very[78] obnoxious to the French Government, and an enemy to the Roman Catholics; yet at the same time he took a prominent position in the popular party. He was said to have been instrumental in bringing over Louise de la Quérouaille, afterwards Duchess of Portsmouth, and to have endeavoured to persuade her to use her influence with the King to exclude his brother from the succession. Finally his vote for the exclusion bill rendered him so obnoxious at Court, that he thought it best to depart once more to Paris with his wife and children. Hence he was summoned by a sad catastrophe, he had lent his magnificent house in Bloomsbury to the Earl of Devonshire, whose servant, in airing one of the rooms, set fire to it, and the “noble mansion” was burned to the ground. The conflagration was witnessed by Lady Rachel Russell, who says: “I heard a great noise in the square, and sent a servant to know what it was, and they brought me word Montagu House was in flames. My boy awaked and said he was nearly stifled, but being told the cause, would see it, and so was satisfied, and accepted a strange bed-fellow,[79] for the nurse brought Lady Devonshire’s youngest boy, wrapped up in a blanket.” The loss was computed at £30,000; but Montagu rebuilt it on a more magnificent scale. Collins says: “It is not exceeded in London.”

Under William III. Montagu’s star was once more in the ascendant; he being one of the Lords who invited over the Prince of Orange. In 1689 he was created Viscount Monthermer and Earl of Montagu, and attended their Majesties’ coronation in his new dignity. In 1690, while engaged in beautifying and laying out Boughton, his excellent wife, who called herself Countess Montagu, died, but he soon gave her a successor. The new made Earl was not content with his coronet, and coveted the “strawberry leaves.” He applied to the King for a dukedom, mentioning among many other cogent reasons: “I am now below the younger branches of my family, my Lord Manchester and my Lord Sandwich;” also that he had taken to his second wife, the daughter of the Duke of Newcastle; and above all that he had been first and last to advocate the cause of William. “I hope it will not be to my disadvantage[80] that I am alive, and ready to do so again, instead of having lost my head with Lord William Russell.” The King refused the dukedom, but showed Lord Montagu much favour, and was his visitor at Boughton, in Northamptonshire where the Court was sumptuously entertained.

Collins says: “My Lord was content with his fortune, and would accept no office save the one he had bought.” Of this he had been unlawfully deprived by James II., who bestowed it on Lord Preston. My Lord Montagu thought himself bound in honour to bring Preston to account, and when the office was restored to him and considerable damages awarded, he was so considerate of Lord Preston’s ill circumstances that he generously forgave him not only the damages, but the costs of the suit.

Queen Anne bestowed upon him the coveted dukedom; in the fourth year of her reign she created him Marquis of Monthermer, and Duke of Montagu. His first wife died in 1690; when he lost no time in soliciting the hand of the relict of Christopher Monk, second Duke of Albemarle, and daughter and sole heiress of[81] Henry Cavendish, Duke of Newcastle. He does not appear to have been so disinterested in his views where money was concerned as Collins would have us believe; since this lady, in spite of her enormous wealth, was a confirmed lunatic, and an obstacle to their union existed in the fact that she had announced her resolution of wedding no one but a sovereign. Montagu was accordingly presented to her as the Emperor of China, and after a short period of eccentric wooing they were married. Until her death the poor maniac was addressed as Empress of China, and served on the bended knee. Lord Ross wished to marry her, and when the Duke prevailed in his suit wrote the following lines:—

“Insulting Rival, never boast
Thy conquest lately won;
No wonder if her heart was lost,
Her senses first were gone.
From one that’s under Bedlam’s laws
What glory can be had?
For love indeed was not the cause,
It proves that she was mad.”

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She survived her husband twenty-six years, and died at Newcastle House in Clerkenwell, being interred in Westminster Abbey, as became her Imperial dignity.

Ralph, Duke of Montagu was, as his picture shows, of a middle height, inclining to fat, and of a dark complexion. He was a man of pleasure, and self-indulgence, but of refined taste in architecture, and his gardens at Boughton were world famed. On one occasion he was showing them to the Duke of Marlborough, who said he believed the water-works were the finest in the world. “They are not to be compared,” replied the courteous host, “to your Grace’s fireworks.” St. Evremond, who was a constant visitor at Boughton and in London, and who met the Duke frequently at the Duchesse de Mazarin’s little salon in Chelsea, was a pensioner on his bounty, and is never tired of extolling his hospitality and generosity, also the charms of the Saturday and Wednesday receptions, at Montagu House.

“On admire avec raison
Votre superbe maison,
A tous étrangers ouverte;

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Les jets d’eau de Boughton,
Les meubles de Ditton, etc.”

He says the cascade at Boughton, though smaller than the one at Versailles, is more beautiful. The old gourmet is never tired of praising the good living and extolling the comestibles that the Duke had sent him, and he says: “J’ai été à Boughton voir milord, la bonne compagnie, l’érudition, les perdreaux, les truffes;” in fact all that had charms for him in the absence of the Duchesse de Mazarin herself, to whom he writes. The two men met frequently at the house of the beautiful Hortense, one of whose most fervent admirers was the Duke of Montagu. To her he was most generous, for in one of her letters she says that if Montagu discovered you liked or admired a thing, you need take no more thought about it: “‘Quelque dépense qu’il faille faire, quelque soin, quelque peine qu’il faut employer pour l’avoir, la chose ne vous manquera pas.’ Ce sont les propres paroles de la feue Duchesse de Mazarin.” But it seems that there was some interruption in their intimacy, for in one of Algernon Sidney’s[84] letters there is this passage: “Montagu goes no more to the Duchesse de Mazarin; whether his love or his politics proved too pressing, I know not, but the town says he is forbid the house.”

His Grace departed this life on the 9th of March, 1708, at Montagu House in Bloomsbury, afterwards the British Museum.


Anne, Viscountess Hinchingbrook:

By MRS. BEALE.

Three-quarter Length.

(Seated. Light Auburn Hair, Dove-coloured Dress. Pearl Ornaments. Holding a Flower in the Left Hand.)

Lady Anne Boyle was the fourth daughter of Richard, second Earl of Cork and first Earl of Burlington, by Lady Elizabeth Clifford, only daughter and heiress of the fifth Earl of Cumberland. In 1667 she married Viscount Hinchingbrook, eldest son of the first Earl of[85] Sandwich, by whom she had two sons and one daughter. Pepys seemed well contented with the marriage for his patron’s son, though he is dissatisfied at not having a favour sent him, and Lady Sandwich was so much pleased with her new daughter-in-law as apparently to be consoled for her first born having lost the chance of marrying the great heiress, Mistress Mallet.

The first time Pepys saw her at Lord Crewe’s he saluted her and invited her to his house; he thought her mighty pleasant and good humoured, but neither did he count her a beauty or ugly, but a comely lady; and when she accepted his hospitality next day he found her “a sweet natured and well disposed lady, a lover of books and pictures, and of good understanding;” and he goes on to visit her and her lord afterwards at Burlington House next to Clarendon House, which he was glad to see for the first time.

Lady Hinchingbrook and her sister Henrietta, Countess of Rochester, were undoubtedly shining lights of modesty, and domestic virtue in this profligate age.

[86]

She was buried in the family vault at Barnwell, where a touching inscription records her many virtues, and the regret her death occasioned.


Elizabeth Popham, Viscountess Hinchingbrook:

By HIGHMORE.

Three-quarter Length.

(In an Orange Gown, Lace Tippet and Ruffles. Holding a Fan. A Blue Hood tied under the Chin.)


The Honourable Mary Montagu:

By WHOOD.

Full-Length.

(As a Child: in a Rich Crimson Dress, embroidered with Silver. White Apron, Lace Cuffs, and Stomacher. Holding a Basket of Cherries, with which she is Feeding a Parrot.)

[87]

The eldest daughter of Edward Richard, Viscount Hinchingbrook, by Elizabeth Popham. Died in childhood.


Louisa, Sixth Countess of Sandwich:

By SIR THOMAS LAWRENCE.

Full-Length.

(In a White Dress with Brown Drapery. Leaning on an Anchor.)

Born, 1781. Died, 1862. The only daughter of Armar Corry, first Earl of Belmore, by Harriet, eldest daughter and co-heiress of the second Earl of Buckinghamshire. Married in 1804, George, Earl of Sandwich, who died at Rome; by whom she had John William, seventh Earl; Harriet, Lady Ashburton, and Caroline, Comtesse Walewska.


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Pendant to the First Earl of Sandwich:

By VAN ZOORST.

Portrait of a Youth in Black. Unknown.

(Brown Hair and Eyes. Small Moustache.)


Edward, First Earl of Sandwich:

By VAN ZOORST.

Half-Length.

(Purple Vest, Broad Belt, Buckle on Shoulder.)


Elizabeth, Countess of Sandwich:

By WISSING.

Three-quarter Length.

(Loose Dress. Blue Scarf. Seated on a Bank, putting a Wreath of Flowers round the Neck of a Lamb.)


[89]

The Honourable Edward Montagu:

By HOGARTH.

Small Half-length.

(A Fair Boy in Crimson Coat and Waistcoat, and Frilled Shirt.)

The fourth son of John, fourth Earl of Sandwich. Born, 1745. Died, 1752. Buried at Barnwell.


The Honourable Elizabeth Montagu:

By WHOOD.

Three-quarter Length.

(Seated, with her Hand on the Neck of a Lamb.)

The second daughter of Edward, Viscount Hinchingbrook, by Elizabeth Popham. Married first to Reginald Courtenay, second son of Sir[90] William Courtenay, of Powderham Castle, Devon, by whom she had one son, Charles, (killed at the battle of Dettingen), and two daughters, co-heiresses: Isabella, wife of William Poyntz, Esq., of Midgham, Berks; and Anne, married to the Earl of Cork and Orrery. Mr. Courtenay died in 1745, and his widow re-married in 1759, William Smith, comedian, better known as “Gentleman Smith.” They lived together at Leiston, near Saxmundham, an estate bequeathed to her by her grandmother, Lady Anne Harvey, where she died. Mr. Smith survived her 57 years. There is a portrait of him by Hoppner, in the National Portrait Gallery. Her brother was very much averse to her marriage with the actor, but the correspondence seems to show they lived happily.

[91]


[92]

DRAWING ROOM.


The Duchesse de Berri:

By RIGAUD.

Half-Length: Oval.

(Hair Dressed High. White and Gold Boddice. Blue Velvet Mantle, lined with Ermine.)

Born, 1694. Died, 1719. Marie Louise, daughter of Philip, second Duke of Orleans, afterwards Regent, by Mademoiselle de Blois, daughter of Louis XIV. and Madame de Montespan. This marriage, which had been determined on by the King, was not only strongly opposed, by the Duchess of Orleans, his mother, but Philip himself, then Duc de Chartres, was repugnant to the mésalliance. He was at length overruled by the commands of his father, and the King his uncle, and proceeded to break the announcement of his engagement to the proud German Princess his mother, who congratulated the fiancé with a blow. One son and five daughters were born to Philip, the second of whom, Marie[93] Louise, married in 1710 the Duc de Berri, third son to the Dauphin, and consequently grandson to Louis XIV. He was a handsome Prince, full of endearing and sterling qualities, but his education had been shamefully neglected, and on this point he was most sensitive. It made him shy of society, and fearful of speaking in public, and on one occasion he was subjected to terrible mortification. At the general Treaty of Peace, when it was settled that the crowns of France and Spain should never devolve on the same person, the Dukes of Orleans and Berri proceeded to the Parliament House to attend to some necessary formalities, on the occasion of the death of the Duc de Bourgogne, and the Duc de Berri found himself compelled to speak. After stammering and stuttering for some time he entirely broke down, and retired in confusion. Relating the circumstance to a friend, he was said to have shed tears of mortification, bitterly complaining at the same time of the manner in which his education had been neglected for the express purpose of keeping him in the background. “J’avois,” said he, “autant de disposition [for[94] learning] que les autres; on ne m’apprit qu’à chasser, on n’a cherché qu’à m’abattre.” In spite of these disadvantages the Duc de Berri was very popular, and is said to have won all hearts, save that of the ill-conditioned Princess whose outward charms had subjugated him. Even at an early age Marie Louise d’Orléans laid herself open to the tongue of scandal, and had been censured for habits of intemperance. On finding there was a chance of making a brilliant marriage she changed her whole line of conduct, and persuaded every one, including the wary Madame de Maintenon, that she was a reformed character. But no sooner was the marriage consummated than the young Duchess threw off the mask, and returned to all her evil ways. In nowise touched by the kindness and devotion of her husband, she thwarted him on every occasion, and delighted to turn him into ridicule, which was easy in the case of one so diffident and sensitive. But even his forbearance had a limit; her conduct disgraced them both, and one day, maddened by jealousy and the insolence of his wife’s Chamberlain, he sought the advice of his trusty friend, the Duc de St. Simon.

[95]

St. Simon spoke strongly on the subject, urging the Duc de Berri to seek redress from the King, and strengthening his counsel by producing a correspondence that had fallen into his hands, between the Duchess and the aforesaid chamberlain. These letters left no doubt of their guilt: in one of them the lady proposed to elope, but her lover refused on the plea that the step would not be conducive to his advancement in life. The Duc de Berri, in conformity with his friend’s advice and his own convictions, determined to carry the correspondence to Rambouillet where Louis XIV. was then staying; but unfortunately his movements were not sufficiently prompt. The Duchess discovered that her husband and the Duc de St. Simon had been closeted together for some time over some animated and highly confidential business; it was not difficult to guess the subject, and no sooner had the Duc de Berri started, than she leaped into her coach, and pursuing him with all haste, broke into the Royal presence just in time to find the King examining the contents of the fatal correspondence. A scene of disgraceful violence and altercation ensued, and[96] so exasperating and shameless was the language of the Duchess, that the hitherto indulgent and forbearing husband raised his heavy riding boot and with one kick sent his wife spinning into the arms of Madame de Maintenon. The King, whose dignity was outraged on all sides, lifted his cane to strike the unhappy Prince, but he had already withdrawn, full of shame at the violence into which he had been betrayed. As for the Duchess, no sooner had she recovered from the shock, than without a word to her sovereign, or Madame de Maintenon, she left the room in a paroxysm of rage. “It is true,” she said afterwards to one of her ladies, “that I have sustained no bodily injury, but the mark will ever remain here,” placing her hand upon what, by courtesy, she called her heart. It undoubtedly remained in her memory; the Duke apologised, and she pretended to be appeased; a reconciliation was patched up, and at a wolf hunt held by the King in the Forest of Marly, the Duc de Berri, who was passionately fond of the sport, rode hard and well. He was suffering from intense thirst when he fell in with his wife’s coach, and riding up asked[97] anxiously if she could supply him with a draught of any kind. The Duchess smiled benignly, and drew from the pocket of the carriage a beautiful little case containing a bottle in which she said she always carried some excellent Ratafia in the event of over-fatigue. The unsuspecting man raised it to his lips and drained the last drop with many expressions of gratitude. The Duchess smiled again: “It is fortunate we met,” she said; and the heavy coach rolled on. In a few hours the Duke was taken ill, and after four days of suffering he expired on May 4th, 1714, at the early age of 28. As in the case of Madame no one doubted the existence of poison, and at first, public opinion was so violent against the Duke of Orleans that he had a narrow escape of his life from the fury of the mob, at the funeral of his son-in-law. Later evidence, however, seemed but too strong against the guilty wife, although the matter was gradually hushed up, as in those days the art of poisoning had become a fashionable pastime. The Duchess did not long survive her victim; she gave herself up to excesses of all kinds, and concluded her ill-spent life of 24 years in 1719.

[98]

In some letters of “Madame, veuve de Monsieur,” the first Duke of Orleans, the Princess of Bavaria to whom allusion has already been made, we are told that the Duchesse de Berri at the time of her death was undoubtedly married clandestinely to Captain de Rious, whose portrait Madame paints in the most unflattering terms as remarkable for his ugliness, in spite of which he was a great favourite with the ladies. He was absent on duty with the regiment the Duchess had bought for him at the time of her death. Madame goes on to say: “Pour se tirer de l’embarras que pouvoit lui donner une oraison funêbre, on a pris le parti de n’en point faire du tout.” Apparently a prudent decision. The same authority states that the Duchesse de Berri had grown very large and florid, (and that she often jested on the change in her own appearance), which would account for her looking twice her real age in this picture.


[99]

Elizabeth, Countess of Sandwich:

By KNELLER.

Half-Length.

(White Déshabille with Coloured Scarf. Hair en Négligé.)

Born, ——. Died, 1757. She was the second daughter of John, Earl of Rochester, by Elizabeth Mallet. She married Edward, third Earl of Sandwich, in 1691. As we have mentioned in the short notice of his life, the marriage was very unhappy, and Lady Sandwich’s conduct in every respect most reprehensible, in spite of her numerous panegyrists. She was a brilliant member of society, and we are told that at the early age of ten years, she already showed a great taste for reading, and had begun to cultivate several foreign languages. She spoke French, Italian and Spanish; Montaigne was one of her favourite authors. She danced and sang, and played on several instruments, and though learned was in no wise pedantic. Neither did[100] she waste so much time on dress, as was usual with ladies of her time. Lady Sandwich went to Paris not very long after her marriage, and St. Evremond, whose admiration she appears to have shared with the Duchesse de Mazarin and Ninon de l’Enclos, thus speaks of her in a letter (without date) to the latter: “Le Docteur Morelli, mon ami particulier, accompagne Madame la Comtesse de Sandwich qui va en France pour sa santé. Feu Monsieur le Comte de Rochester, Père de Madame Sandwich, avoit plus d’esprit qu’homme en Angleterre. Madame de Sandwich en a plus que n’avoit Monsieur son père; aussi généreuse que spirituelle, aussi aimable que spirituelle et généreuse. Voilà une partie de ses qualités.” According to St. Evremond’s implied wishes, his two friends formed a close intimacy, and Lady Sandwich at Paris seems to have merited Ninon’s report of her when she says: “J’ignore les manières Anglaises, mais elle a été très française.” It must have been during this first visit to Paris that Lady Sandwich made the acquaintance of the French celebrities whose portraits now adorn the Drawing-room[101] at Hinchingbrook, as on her return to the French metropolis in 1729 they were all dead. Mademoiselle de l’Enclos is never tired of praising her English friend; in a letter dated August, 1698, she says to St. Evremond: “Madame Sandwich m’a donné mille plaisirs, par le bonheur que j’ai eu de lui plaire; je ne croyois pas sur mon déclin, pouvoir être propre à une femme de son âge. Elle a plus d’esprit que toutes les femmes de France, et plus de véritable mérite. Elle nous quitte; c’est un regret pour tous qui la connoissent, et pour moi particulièrement. Si vous aviez été ici nous aurions faits des repas dignes du temps du passé. Vous allez revoir Madame Sandwich, que nous voyons partir avec beaucoup de regret.” Again in July, 1699: “Vous allez voir Madame Sandwich, mais je crains qu’elle n’aille à la campagne; elle sait tout ce que vous pensez d’elle; elle vous dira plus de nouvelles de ce pays ci que moi. Elle a tout approfondi et tout pénétré: elle connoit parfaitement tout ce que je hante, et a trouvé le moyen de n’être pas étrangère ici.” In the lengthened correspondence between Mademoiselle de l’Enclos and[102] her faithful Abbé, she constantly reverts to the English lady after her departure from Paris: “Madame Sandwich conservera l’esprit en perdant la jeunesse. Faites la souvenir de moi; je serois bien fâchée d’en être oubliée;” while St. Evremond on his part tells her: “Tout le monde connoit l’esprit de Madame la Comtesse; je vois son bon goût par l’estime extraordinaire qu’elle a pour vous. Elle est admirée à Londres comme elle fut à Paris.”

There is a long tedious poem from the same pen, describing the presents (comestibles) which Lady Sandwich had sent the Duchesse de Mazarin, with whom she had become very intimate: “Des moutons et des lapins de Bath.” He speaks of Morelli as friend and physician of all three:

“Sandwich et Mazarin que le Ciel vous unisse,
Et que cette union de cent ans ne finisse.”

He alludes to meeting her often in society, more especially at Boughton, the beautiful country house of Lord (afterwards Duke of) Montagu. “Jamais personne n’a mieux mérité d’être reçue magnifiquement, et galamment régalée, que Madame Sandwich; jamais homme[103] ne fut plus propre pour la bien recevoir que my Lord Montagu. J’espère que la cascade l’octagone, les jets d’eau, etc., auront fait oublier la France à Madame Sandwich, et comme my Lord est assez heureux pour inspirer son goût et ses desseins sur les bâtiments et les jardins, je ne doute point qu’elle n’entreprenne bientôt quelque nouvel ouvrage à Hinchinbrooke. On ne sauroit être plus sensible que je le suis à l’honneur de son souvenir. Il ne manquoit rien pour combler mon déplaisir de n’avoir pas vu Boughton et le maître du lieu, que de ne point voir Hinchinbrooke et sa maîtresse, qui est le plus grand ornement de tous les lieux où elle se trouve.” He writes to Ninon to tell her of a wager he had with Lady Sandwich, respecting their eating powers at a dinner at Lord Jersey’s: “Je ne fut pas vaincu,” boasts the epicure, “ni sur les louanges ni sur l’appétit.”

At Bath she evidently was the head of a coterie; and Pope writes: “I am beginning an acquaintance with Lady Sandwich, who has all the spirit of the past age, and the gay experience of a pleasurable life. It were as scandalous an omission to come to the Bath, and not to see my[104] Lady Sandwich, as it had been to have travelled to Rome, and not to have seen the Queen of Sweden. It is, in a word, the best thing the country has to boast of, and as she has been all that a woman of spirit could be, so she still continues that easy and independent creature, that a sensible woman always will be.” Such is Pope’s standard of female excellence! In another letter to his friend, Charles Boyle, Earl of Orrery, he says: “This lady is both an honour, and a disgrace to her native country. She resided in France for some time; but it is a melancholy reflection that we have either nothing in England, valuable enough to make her prefer her own country to another, or that we will not suffer such a person to reside quietly among us.”

In 1729, on the death of her ill-fated husband, the object of so much praise and admiration, returned to the more genial atmosphere of Paris, for the remainder of her life.

In June 1751, Lord Chesterfield writes to his son, then at Paris, as follows: “A propos of beaux esprits, have you les entrées at Lady[105] Sandwich’s, who, old as she was, when I saw her last, had the strongest parts of any woman I ever knew in my life. If you are not acquainted with her, the Duchesse d’Aiguillon or Lady Hervey can, and I daresay will, introduce you. I assure you it is worth while both on her own account, and for the sake of people of wit and learning, who frequent her salon. In such companies there is always something to be learned as well as manners; the conversation turns on something above trifles; some point of literature, customs, history, etc., is discussed with ingenuity and good manners; for I must do the French people of learning justice; they are not bears as most of ours are, but gentlemen.”

Lady Sandwich died at Paris, at her house in the Rue Vaugirard, July 1, 1757, in the Faubourg St. Germains. In a letter of Horace Walpole’s, to John Chute, Esq., the same year, he says: “Old Lady Sandwich is dead at Paris, and my Lord (her grandson) has given me her picture of Ninon de l’Enclos in the prettiest manner in the world. If ever he should intermeddle in an election in Hampshire, I beg you will[106] serve him to the utmost of your power. I fear I must wait for the picture.” At Lady Sandwich’s death in Paris, although she had taken every precaution to prevent such a casualty, there arose a great difficulty in securing the property to her grandson and heir. The French officers rushed in, put seals on everything, and claimed le “mobilier, les tableaux, etc., par le droit d’aubaine.” Lord Sandwich sent over his solicitor, who had a roughish time of it, with these “harpies.” He appealed to the Duchesse d’ Aiguillon and other illustrious friends of the deceased countess, who promised him every assistance, and as he discovered afterwards, were working against him all the time. But the good lawyer was triumphant in the end and wrote to his noble client that everything was safe, including the pictures, and he especially notes that of Ninon de l’Enclos, “which is very valuable,” he says, “and innumerable offers have been made for it, here.” But it was reserved for Horace Walpole’s Gallery, and some letters passed on the subject, for although Horace could express his opinion of Lord Sandwich in no[107] flattering terms, he did not object to receive a present at his hands; and he offers in return (later) a copy of the memoirs of the Comte de Grammont, printed at his own press at Strawberry Hill, which contains an engraving of the afore-mentioned portrait of Mademoiselle de l’Enclos, Lord Sandwich’s letters on the subject are in his most jocose style.


Ninon de l’Enclos:

By PIERRE MIGNARD.

(Oval. Crimson and Orange Dress.)

Born at Paris, 1615. Died, 1705.—The early education of Anne de l’Enclos was not calculated to lead to favourable results. The characters of her parents were strangely opposed to each other, and remarkable for violent extremes. “M. de l’Enclos, duelliste, musicien, homme de plaisir, gentilhomme; Madame de l’Enclos, sévère, exacte.” The[108] mother’s wish was to immure her daughter in a convent, a project which the father strenuously opposed. But by the time the girl had attained her fifteenth year she was left an orphan, at liberty to follow her own devices. Scepticism and Epicureanism were very prevalent at this epoch, and of these schools Ninon became a too willing disciple. She soon became the centre of attraction; her conquests were legion. Voltaire said: “There will be soon as many histories of Ninon as there are of Louis XIV.” Voltaire was only thirteen years old when he was first presented to Mademoiselle de l’Enclos, who was much struck with him, and evidently detected some promise of his future greatness. At her death she bequeathed him 2000 francs to buy books. She was a strange mixture of self-indulgence and self-restraint: at one time her conduct was so outrageous in its immorality as to scandalize even the Court of the Great Monarch, and it was reported that she was advised to emigrate, “Mais elle ne partit point,” says St. Beuve; “elle continua la même vie, en baissant légèrement le ton.” Later on, he says: “Elle rangea[109] sa vie et la réduisit petit à petit, sur le pied honorable, où on la vit finir.” St. Simon “le sévère,” says: “Ninon eût des amis illustres de toutes les sortes, et elle les conserva tous. Tout se conduisit chez elle, avec un respect et une décence extrème—jamais ni jeu, ni ris élevés, ni dispute; sa conversation était charmante, désinteressée, fidèle, secrète au dernier point.” She was temperate in eating and drinking, and would never suffer drunkards at her table; indeed in her youth, she appears to have drunk no wine, though occasionally in some of her later letters to St. Evremond, she discourses somewhat enthusiastically on a subject so near to her correspondent’s heart, and speaking of her advanced age she says: “L’appétit est quelque chose dont je jouis encore.” St. Beuve tells us: “Qu’elle réfléchissait dans un âge, et dans un train de vie, où à peine les autres sont capables de penser, et elle, qui resta si longtemps jeune par l’esprit, se trouva mûre par là aussi avant l’âge.” La Force says: “Je n’ai pas connu cette Ninon dans sa beauté, mais à l’âge de cinquante et de soixante [the report ran until past 80] elle a eu des amants qui l’ont[110] fort aimé, et les plus honnêtes gens de France pour amis.” Her salon was the most brilliant in Paris; parents schemed that their children’s débût in the world should be made under Ninon’s auspices, and Madame de Coulanges observes: “Les femmes courent après elle aujourd’hui, comme d’autres gens y couraient autrefois.” Even the straight-laced Madame de Maintenon, in speaking of her brother, writes to her thus: “Continuez, Mademoiselle, à donner de bons conseils à M. d’Aubigné: il à bien besoin des leçons de Leontium; [this was Ninon’s nickname, so called from the favourite disciple of Epicurus] les avis d’une amie aimable persuadent toujours plus que les conseils d’une sœur sévère.” Tallemant says that her beauty was never very remarkable: “Son esprit etoit plus charmant que son visage—dès qu’elle parloit, on était pris et ravi.” She sang, and played on the lute. “‘La sensibilité,’ dit elle, ‘est l’ame du chant.’” Her portrait is drawn by Mademoiselle de Scudéry in her novel of “Clélie.” “Elle parle volontiers; elle rit aisément, elle aime à faire une innocente guerre à ses amis. Les cheveux d’un beau chatain, le[111] visage rond, le teint vif, la bouche agréable, les lèvres fort incarnates, une petite fosse au menton, les yeux noirs, brillants, pleins de feu, souriants, et la physionomie fine, enjouée, et fort spirituelle.” It can scarcely be denied that this description entitles to beauty, and so indeed do the portraits at Hinchingbrook and Althorp, though she was apparently at an advanced age when the latter was painted. “On a dit d’elle, qu’à la table elle étoit ivre dès la soupe! ivre de bonne humeur, et de saillies;” for as we have seen before, she was always temperate. Her letters to St. Evremond when they were both old, are most characteristic. They occasionally lament together over their age, but appear to have had many gleams of consolation. From the highest and truest of all comfort, they seem to have cut themselves off; and yet, in Ninon’s touching and eloquent letter to her correspondent, on the occasion of the death of the Duchesse de Mazarin, his dearest friend, there is this passage: “Si on pouvoit penser comme Madame de Chevreuse, qui croyoit en mourant, qu’elle alloit causer avec tous ses amis en l’autre monde, il seroit[112] doux de le penser.” In another letter to the same, she says: “Nous allons mériter la louange de la postérité, pour la durée de nos vies, et celle de l’amitié; je crois que je vivrai autant que vous. Adieu Monsieur; pourquoi n’est ce pas un bon jour?” This was something like a prophecy, as they died within two years of each other, one having completed, the other within a few months of, ninety years of age. In speaking of her reception of a friend, whom St. Evremond had recommended to her notice, she says: “J’ai lu (devant lui) votre lettre avec des lunettes, mais elles ne me sieyent pas mal; j’ai toujours eu la mine grave.” Again: “Tout le monde me dit, que j’ai moins à me plaindre du temps qu’une autre; de quelque sorte que cela soit, qui m’aurait proposé une telle vie, je me serois pendue.” In spite of which, her letters are invariably cheerful. St. Evremond says, in very nearly the same strain as he writes to his other frequent correspondent the Duchess of Mazarin: “La nature commence à faire voir par vous, qu’il est possible de ne point vieillir. Vous êtes de tous les pays, aussi estimée à Londres qu’à Paris: vous êtes de tous[113] les temps, vous êtes la maîtresse du présent et du passé.” Ninon died at her house at Paris about five o’clock in the evening, having outlived her ninetieth birthday by five months.

Note.—The Abbé Charles de St. Evremond, to whom we are indebted for so much information relating to Ninon de l’Enclos, and the Duchesse de Mazarin, was (originally) a soldier, an author, and a statesman—likewise a bon vivant, in all of which characters, he distinguished himself. He was in great favour at one time with Cardinal Mazarin, but having incurred that potentate’s displeasure, he thought it prudent to take refuge in England, where he remained till his death, in 1703, having made friends with all the leading men in that country, and being in great favour with the ladies, for his agreeable conversation and delicate flattery.


Hortense Mancini, Duchesse de Mazarin:

By MIGNARD.

Half-Length.

(Oval. Dark Hair and Eyes. Very loose Déshabille.)

Born, 1646. Died, 1699.—The five nieces of the Cardinal Mazarin were all remarkable for[114] beauty and intelligence, and for lives full of dramatic interest. Ninon de l’Enclos says: “Toutes les nièces du Cardinal avaient un don singulier d’attrait, et comme une magie: la source des charmes est dans le sang Mazarin.” They were the daughters of Lorenzo Mancini, by the Cardinal’s beloved sister. Lorenzo was a great astrologer, and had not only correctly foretold his own death, and that of their only son, but had also predicted that his widow would not survive her fifty-second year. The prophecy weighed on her mind, and perhaps hastened the fulfilment. Her eldest daughter Laura, Duchesse de Mercœur, died in childbed, it is supposed brokenhearted at her mother’s loss. Hortense Mancini, the fourth, and apparently the favourite niece of the Cardinal, was born at Rome in 1646, and on her arrival in Paris, became the centre of attraction from her surpassing beauty. After many negociations, the Cardinal bestowed her hand, and an enormous fortune on the Duc de Meilleraye, on condition that he would assume the name of Mazarin. No sooner was she betrothed, than Hortense received at the hands of her uncle,[115] who had hitherto been very niggardly towards her, a splendid corbeille de noces, and a large sum in gold. She was so elated by this sudden accession of fortune, that she sent for her brother, and sisters, and encouraged them to take what they pleased, and when this curious trio had helped themselves, she took handfuls of money, and flung them out to the lacqueys in the court-yard beneath, and was much amused by watching the scramble. The Cardinal, at that time very near his end, was furious at this wanton manner, of disposing of his bounty.

The marriage proved most unhappy; the husband morose, jealous, exacting; the wife beautiful, brilliant, wayward. In her later correspondence with St. Evremond, she makes many excuses for having left her husband, and not returning to him, in spite of all his solicitations and the action which he brought against her, for separating herself from him. She fled from his roof, in the disguise of a man, and by all accounts not empty handed; “mais tous les chemins mènent à Paris,” and on her return there she received a pension from the King, which, however, she did not consider sufficient[116] to enable her to reside there. She accordingly retired to Chambéri. But in the year 1675 she went to England in the train of Mary of Modena, the youthful Duchess of York. The real object of this journey is believed to have been a mission, with which she was entrusted by the numerous enemies of Mademoiselle de Quérouaille (afterwards Duchess of Portsmouth) to destroy that favourite’s influence by supplanting her, in the affections of Charles II. Nor did such a result appear improbable, as Hortense surpassed her rival, both in wit, and beauty, and it was well known that the King had already admired her so much, as to entertain serious notions of making her his wife. He gave her a most warm reception, and settled a pension on her, the Duke of Mazarin having already found means to possess himself of the pittance, allowed her by Louis XIV. But unfortunately for all these deep-laid schemes, Hortense was so much enamoured of the Prince de Monaco, then in England, as to incur the King’s anger, and cause him for a while even to suspend her pension.

She never left England; persuasions, stratagems,[117] and menaces, all were useless to induce her, to return to France. Her husband sent over Madame de Rutz to try and bring her back to him, or induce her to enter a convent, but she says to St. Evremond: “La liberté ne coute jamais trop chére à qui se délivre de la tyrannie.” She speaks of the alternative of returning to the Duke’s roof, or immuring herself in a convent, as “deux extrémités à éviter, autant l’une que l’autre.” Yet at one time, on the occasion of a lover being killed in a duel in Spain, she seems to have entertained the notion of embracing the latter alternative; but the easy-going St. Evremond advised her strongly against such a step, assuring her the loss of a lover, might soon be repaired. Her enemies in France, founded a scandal on the discovery that she did not reside under the roof of her Royal mistress, at Whitehall, “mais dans un Pavillon tout près du Château de St. James.” She also incurred blame in many quarters, for not sharing Queen Mary’s exile in 1688; but she excuses herself, by saying that if she did so, not only would she place herself once more in the power of her enemies, but that it was[118] impossible for her to leave England. She was deeply in debt; she scarcely dared leave the house, for fear of being arrested. She makes a most pitiful lament, (probably about the time of the escape of James II. to France) over her destitution, always to the same friend, and confidant. “Nul bien de moi, nulle assistance où je suis, nulle espérance d’ailleurs.” Yet she received at different times, pensions from four different monarchs, for William III. continued her allowance. Be this as it may, she contrived to amuse herself, in her house at Chelsea, where St. Evremond was a constant visitor, in spite of his complaints to Lady Anne Hervey, of the occasional cold and discomfort. She assembled round her bassette table, (for in later years she was much addicted to play) a brilliant, aristocratic, literary circle. She gave dinners too, and the St. Evremond correspondence shows us, that presents of meat, wine, and fruit, were as common in those days, as baskets of game in the nineteenth century. Her friends, Lady Sandwich, and the Duke of Montagu in particular, appear to have been very generous, in such contributions, and both the Duchess, and[119] St. Evremond, appreciated to their fullest extent, the pleasures of eating, and drinking, although the latter often expostulates with the former against over-indulgence in stimulants. He warns her against excess in white wine, absynthe or usquebaugh, which are bad for the lungs; her heart, and her head, were given her for better things. There seems every reason to believe the learned man’s precepts, and example, were not always in unison. She occasionally played too high, or too frequently at bassette, to please him. He wrote a poetical scene in which, playing with the handsome “Madame Middleton,” Hortense discusses with her the comparative beauties of “Madame Grafton, Madame Kildare, and Madame Lichfield.” In another letter, an answer no doubt to some lamentations over her pecuniary distresses, he says: “Demandez toujours de l’argent; s’il n’en vient point, c’est vous qui avez sujet de vous plaindre.”

She numbered amongst her friends and acquaintance the habitués of her house at Chelsea, many of the noblest names in England; the Duke of Montagu, one of her warmest[120] admirers; Lord Godolphin, the Duke of St. Albans, Mr. Villiers, etc. Most of these gentlemen seem at a loss “où passer leurs soirées” when she is absent from London. Lady Sandwich, a kindred spirit, Lady Anne Montagu, and many other members of the English aristocracy frequented her house. This was again in accordance with the exhortations of her counsellor, for he writes soon after her flitting to Chelsea: “Tout est triste à Londres; il n’est pas de même à Chelsea. Montrez vous de temps en temps, où laissez vous voir à Chelsea.” The picture that he draws of her charms, although in the high-flown language of the period, and of his nation, does not appear over-done when we look at Mignard’s beautiful portrait, of this undoubtedly beautiful woman. Her venerable adorer bids the young beauties of England tremble, at the name of Hortense; he describes her white teeth, her mouth a lovely opening flower, her pretty dimples, her bright dark eyes, (which were sometimes a source of great suffering to her), and her luxuriant hair; and in his description he begs you not to let the modelling of her[121] dainty ear, escape your notice. He also assures her, that it is a pity to conceal her attractions in splendid robes, for that a simple déshabille becomes her best. Surely she acted on this hint, when she sate to Mignard. The titles of Madame, or Duchesse, ought not to be given her in speaking to, or of her: “Vous êtes au dessus des titres, et il me semble qu’on ôte à votre mérite tout ce qu’on donne à votre qualité.” She did not disdain to dine with St. Evremond, but he was well aware how particular she was in her tastes, and provided for her accordingly. “Le mouton de Windsor cède au mouton de Bath, c’est la décision de Hortense; Bath aura donc la préférence. Si vous voulez du fruit, apportez en; le vin j’en ai de bon.” In one of her temporary absences, at Bath, or elsewhere, he went to Chelsea, and describes how melancholy, and deserted were the house, and household, her waiting maid Isabelle, her little Moorish page, the parrot Pretty, the lap-dog Chop, and Filis the canary bird; nothing is wanting to complete this picture of the English house of Hortense, Duchesse de Mazarin, in the country, which a contemporary and a[122] compatriot designated as “un pays hérétique, l’objet du courroux du Ciel, et de la haine des hommes.” The beautiful exile had little to complain of, in the welcome she received in this vilified country.

St. Evremond’s letters to Ninon de l’Enclos, on the death of his dearest and best friend, are expressive of deep and sincere grief. She died heavily in his debt, but he would have given that, and all he had, to bring her back to life. People might live a century, and never see her equal: “Tout le monde vous imite, personne ne vous ressemble,” were the words, he once addressed to her. She scolded her friends at times, but in so charming a manner:

“‘Hélas, autre source de larmes,
Tous ses défauts, avoient des charmes.’

Elle n’avoit jamais su ni tromper, ni haïr.” He praises the manner of her death, and says: “Les Anglais, qui surpassent toutes les nations à mourir, la doivent regarder avec jalousie.” What added poignancy to his regret, was the conviction that her own imprudence hastened the end, a circumstance over which he, and Ninon lament together. To the man who was[123] within four years of ninety, Hortense at fifty-three, and evidently still most attractive, must have appeared comparatively young. She died in her house at Chelsea in the summer of 1699.


Mary, Queen of James II., King of England:

By L’ARGILLIERE.

Half-Length.

(Murrey-coloured Dress. Blue Scarf. Pearl Necklace and Ornaments.)

Born, 1658. Died, 1691.—The daughter of Alfonso the Fourth, Duke of Modena, by Marie Mancini. Became an orphan at an early age; was married to the Duke of York (soon after the death of his first wife, Anne Hyde) first by proxy, and then in London in 1673. Young, handsome, single-minded, impulsive, full of affection to a husband twenty years her senior, remarkable in an immoral Court for the[124] modesty, and decorum of her conduct, Mary devoted herself to the restoration of the Catholic religion, and in consequence became the idol of its votaries, and was hated in proportion by the Protestants.

James had a great respect and even affection for his wife, in spite of the frequent causes he afforded her for jealousy, and there is no doubt that she influenced him very much in religious matters, and contributed to his downfall. They had several children who died in their infancy; but in 1688 the unfortunate Prince of Wales, afterwards called the Old Pretender, or Chevalier de St. George, was born. The Queen’s romantic adventures when, aided by the Duc de Lauzun, she escaped in the dead of night, with her infant in her arms, are too well known to be recorded here. She fled to St. Germains, where Louis XIV received her with royal honours, and human sympathy, and she was soon joined by her husband. Madame de Sévigné’s portrait of Mary of Modena on her first arrival, might well be said to rival that of L’Argillière: “La Reine a des yeux beaux, et noirs, qui ont pleuré, un beau teint un peu pâle, la bouche grande,[125] de belles dents, une belle taille, et pleine d’esprit, tout cela compose une femme qui plait beaucoup. Tout ce qu’elle dit est juste, et de bon sens.” She was most grateful to the French King, and on one occasion when he held the Prince of Wales in his arms she said: “Hitherto I have been glad that my son was too young to understand his misfortunes; now I pity him that he cannot appreciate the goodness of your Majesty.”

Nothing could equal the consideration and generosity of Louis XIV. towards the exiled sovereigns. The ex-Queen of England had a small Court of her own, at St. Germains, where she presided with gentle quiet dignity, cheering the declining days of her unhappy husband, by her unceasing devotion. Whatever the faults of Mary of Modena may have been in public life, no one could deny to the exiled Princess a reputation for virtue, tenderness, and charity, very uncommon in the age in which she lived.

She was witness to the unsuccessful attempts of both her husband, and son, to recover the Crown, and died after a short illness in the “very odour of sanctity.”


[126]

Henrietta Maria, Duchess of Orleans:

By MIGNARD.

Half-length.

(Oval. Auburn Hair. White Satin Dress. Pearls.)

Born, 1644. Died, 1670.—Daughter of Charles I., King of England, by Henrietta Maria of France. When the Queen of Charles I., a fortnight after her confinement, was compelled to fly before the Parliamentary army, she confided the infant Princess to the care of her governess, Lady Morton, who retired with her charge to Oatlands. Two years afterwards, when the Parliament threatened to deprive that lady of her little ward, she determined to thwart them in the attempt. She disguised herself as a poor French servant, and provided herself with a humpback, in which she carried little Henrietta dressed as a boy. They proceeded in this way on foot to Dover, where they embarked, and the faithful governess restored the child to her mother at Paris. But Lady Morton had an enemy to contend with in the proud spirit of the English Princess, who was[127] indignant at being clothed in a coarse dress, and still more at being mistaken for a boy; and she kept informing the passers by of her royal state, which information was fortunately unintelligible.

On the death of the King, she accompanied her mother to France, where they lived in great seclusion; on her first arrival indeed, the widowed Queen of England had established a small court, and some degree of state, but the niggardliness of the Cardinal-Minister, Mazarin, soon reduced her means. The first appearance of the young Princess was on the occasion of a select ball at court, given by Anne of Austria in her own private apartments. The Queen-Mother had taken a fancy to the beautiful girl, and the entertainment was given in her honour: Anne was therefore most indignant, when the King selected one of the beauties of her own Court, as his partner for the first dance. She separated their hands sharply, and in a peremptory tone, desired her son to dance with the English Princess. Louis XIV., in a pet, replied, “he did not care to dance with little girls,” and that in so audible a tone, as to be[128] overheard by mother, and daughter. In vain Queen Henrietta Maria, stung to the quick by the slight put upon her child, declared she could not dance, having sprained her ancle; Anne of Austria insisted, and the King reluctantly led out his unwilling partner, whose crimson cheeks, and streaming eyes, drew the attention of the whole society upon her. For some time the King cherished a feeling of dislike towards the young Princess, so much so as to oppose the union between her, and his brother Monsieur, the Duke of Orleans. But this marriage was resolved on by the two royal mothers, and it was finally arranged that the nuptials should take place, on the return of the Queen and Princess Henrietta from England, whither they went for the ostensible motive of congratulating Charles II. on his restoration to the throne, although it was well known that political intrigues were mixed up with these congratulations.

At her brother’s Court the young Henrietta “turned all heads, and inflamed all hearts,” says a contemporary. The Duke of Buckingham, who accompanied them on their return[129] to France, incurred the maternal anger, by his undisguised devotion to the fiançée of Monsieur. The voyage was a disastrous one, the vessel struck on a rock, and nearly went to pieces, and no sooner had they gained the shore in safety, than the Princess sickened of the measles. The Duke of Buckingham, maddened by the dangers both by sea, and land, to which the beautiful object of his sudden passion, was exposed, became so demonstrative in the expressions of his grief, and affection, that the English Queen judged it prudent, to despatch him as avant-courier, to Paris. On her recovery, and return thither, the Princess found herself as much admired as she had been at her brother’s Court, and the King opened his eyes and wondered at himself for not caring to dance with “such a little girl.” “Les yeux vifs, noirs, brillans, pleins de feu,” says Choisy, “elle fut l’objet de tous les empressemens imaginables, compris ceux de Monsieur. Elle a l’esprit aussi aimable que le reste.” The Duke of Orleans was not supposed to be much in love with his wife, but that did not prevent his being very jealous of the Dukes of Buckingham,[130] and Guiche, in particular. Buckingham indeed had brought the husband’s jealousy on his own head, by his absurd demeanour, and had been the means of instilling suspicion into his mind, with regard to the Duc de Guiche, a remarkably handsome, and attractive young courtier. In another quarter, jealousy was rife, for the newly married Queen of France, Maria Theresa, deeply attached to a husband who remained always indifferent to her, watched with dismay the influence “Madame,” (as Henrietta was now called) exercised over the King.

The second Court under “Madame’s” auspices, with its young beauties, its easy conversation, and pleasant pastimes, was exactly suited to the Monarch’s taste, and he was known to have said, in speaking of the Duchess of Orleans, “qu’il connoissoit en la voyant de plus près, combien il avoit été injuste, à la plus belle personne du monde.” The admiration she excited, and the influence she obtained over her brother-in-law, ended indeed, only with her life. Her small Court was brilliant, in the extreme, and they amused themselves in divers ways. “Madame, montoit à cheval, suivie de[131] toutes ses dames, habillées galamment, avec mille plumes sur leurs têtes, accompagnées du Roi, et de la jeunesse de la Cour.” Monsieur lived a great deal in the Palais Royal, and there she would go to sup with him, taking all her ladies, and chosen friends with her. Mademoiselle de la Vallière was one of her Maids of Honour, and the liaison with the King, began under Henrietta’s roof. She had been very fond of the beautiful girl, but treated her with marked displeasure, in the latter days.

Madame made a second journey to England, for the purpose of concluding a private treaty, between her brother, and the French monarch, and of detaching the former from his alliance with Holland. On this occasion, she was accompanied by the celebrated Mademoiselle de la Quérouaille, afterwards Duchess of Portsmouth, who had also her sealed orders. The mission was successful, though neither advantageous, nor honourable, as far as England was concerned. Madame returned in triumph, took up her abode at the Palace of St. Cloud, and appeared to have reached the zenith of worldly prosperity, always excepting the unhappy difference, with[132] her husband, which commenced so soon after their marriage, and had increased rather than diminished. Her tried friend, and trusty confidant in these trials, was Cosnac, Bishop of Valence, afterwards Archbishop of Aix, a distinguished, but eccentric man. At twenty-four years of age, he preached a sermon, which made such an impression on the mind, of Mazarin, the Cardinal Minister, that on the conclusion of the service, he promised the preacher a bishopric; what he called “faire un maréchal de France sur la brêche.” Cosnac was afterwards appointed almoner to Monsieur, and resided with him, for some time, during which period, he endeavoured to gain an influence for good, over the mind of this fickle, and vacillating Prince, and often expostulated with him, on his conduct to the Duchess. They quarrelled, and separated, but his indignation against Monsieur’s unworthy favourite, the Chevalier de Loraine, so enraged the Duke that he contrived to procure a sentence of exile, against Cosnac. But absence could not sever the bonds of friendship, which bound him to Henrietta, and of which he gave a valuable[133] proof, on the occasion of a libel, that was published against her in Holland, at the time of her negociations between England, and France. The Duchess dreaded lest the scurrilous pamphlet, most damaging to her reputation, should fall into her husband’s hands, and she wrote off in terror to her exiled friend, to ask his assistance. Cosnac immediately despatched an emissary to Holland, who did his work so effectually, that the whole edition was bought up, the publication stopped, and all the extant copies brought over, to be destroyed by this zealous friend. As in duty bound, “Madame” worked hard to obtain the Bishop’s recall, so much so that the King thought her attachment to him, must be of a more tender nature than she confessed. Louis XIV., in all probability, was not a good judge of friendship, or a believer in it, where a woman was concerned.

In her correspondence with Cosnac, in speaking of her mission to England, she hints at the hope of Charles II. becoming a Roman Catholic, in the event of which she promises that he shall obtain a Cardinal’s hat. On her[134] return from England, four days before her death, describing the affectionate reception, she had met with from the French King, she says: “Le Roi même à mon retour m’a témoigné beaucoup de bonté; mais pour Monsieur rien n’est égal à son acharnement, pour trouver moyen de se plaindre. Il me fit l’honneur de me dire, que je suis toute puissante, et que par conséquent si je ne fais pas revenir le Chevalier de Loraine, exilé par le Roi, je ne me soucie pas de lui plaire, et il fait ensuite des menaces, pour le temps à venir.” To the same correspondent, she complains that her little girl is brought up, to hate her. Three days later, towards five o’clock in the afternoon, the Duchess of Orleans asked for a glass of iced chicory water; a short time after drinking which, she was seized with excruciating pain, and strong convulsions. As her condition grew worse, it became evident to herself, and all around her, that the end was approaching. Her confessor, Feuillet, was sent for, and in his questions, and exhortations, he did not spare his dying penitent, but both he, and Bossuet, who was also present, became deeply affected, by the humble devotion, and pious[135] resignation, to the Divine Will, which the unhappy Princess, evinced in the midst of all her sufferings. She was most anxious not to forget any one, and recalling a promise she had made, some time ago to a friend, she called one of her weeping attendants to her, and gave orders where she would find a ring, and to whom it should be sent, as her parting gift. As the last moment approached, she placed her hand in that of her husband, and gazing earnestly in his face said most emphatically: “Monsieur, je ne vous ai jamais manqué.” She thought of every one in her last moments, and closed an adventurous, and chequered life, at the early age of twenty-six, at peace, with all mankind, repentant, and trusting in the mercy of God.

That her death was the effect of poison, none could doubt: the question arose, who was the murderer. The King sent for his brother, and charged him with the crime, and a violent scene ensued between them; but the real criminal appears to have been the exiled Chevalier de Loraine, and evidence of the strongest nature was brought to show, that he sent the poison[136] from Rome by a Monsieur Morel (who was not in the secret) to the Marquise d’Effiat, and a footman deposed, to seeing the Marquise rubbing the inside of the cup, which was immediately afterwards given to Madame, with the chicory water, when she complained of thirst. Be this as it may, no sooner was she dead, than the Chevalier de Loraine was recalled from exile, and the whole matter hushed up.

Cosnac’s description of Madame, was as follows: “Elle avoit l’esprit solide, et du bon sens, l’âme grande, et fort éclairée, sur tout ce qu’il faudroit faire, mais quelque-fois elle ne le faisoit pas, par une faiblesse naturelle…. Elle mêlait dans toute sa conversation, une douceur qu’on ne trouvoit point dans les autres personnes royales; ce n’est pas qu’elle eût moins de majesté, mais elle en savoit user d’une manière plus facile, et plus touchante. Pour les traits de son visage, on n’en trouve point de plus achevés; les yeux vifs, sans être rudes, la bouche admirable, le nez parfait (chose rare), le teint blanc et uni, la taille médiocre mais fine: son esprit animait tout son corps; elle en avoit jusqu’aux pieds; elle dansait mieux[137] que femme au monde.” She loved poetry and befriended poets: Corneille in his old age, and Racine, whose heart she gained by shedding tears at the first reading of his “Andromaque.” La Force said after her death: “Le goût des choses de l’esprit avoit fort baissé. Il est certain qu’en perdant cette Princesse la cour perdoit la seule personne de son sang, qui était capable d’aimer et de distinguer le mérite, et il n’y a eu depuis sa mort, que jeu, confusion, et impolitesse.”


Charles V., Emperor of Germany:

By TIZIANO VECELLI.

Three-quarter Length.

(In Armour, Standing by a Table, on which is his Plumed Helmet.)

Born at Ghent, 1500. Died 1558.—The son of Philip, Archduke of Austria, by Joan the Mad, heiress of Castile, and daughter of Ferdinand and Isabella. Became King of Spain in 1516, and Emperor of Germany in[138] 1519, on the death of Maximilian. Francis I., King of France, was his competitor for the imperial dignity, and a war was the result, when the French King was defeated, and made prisoner. But Charles’s whole life was spent in warfare, until his abdication, and final seclusion from the world, in the Convent of San Yuste, in Estremadura, where he died. He married the daughter of the King of Portugal, by whom he had Philip II. and two daughters.


Prince Rupert:

By VANDYCK.

Three-quarter Length.

(Rich Dress of Murrey Coloured Satin, with Cuirass.)

Born, 1619. Died, 1682.—The fourth son of Frederic, Elector Palatine, afterwards King of Bohemia, by Elizabeth, daughter of James I., King of Great Britain. His birth at Prague was hailed with great joy, and his baptism was an occasion of extraordinary pomp. He was[139] an intelligent and merry child, and as a youth, his elder brother writes home accounts of his proficiency in study, and in athletic exercises, describing “our Rupert,” as a species of Admirable Crichton. Both he, and his brother Charles were educated at Leyden, and stood very high at the collegiate examination, when their father, the unfortunate King of Bohemia, travelled thither, and saw his boys for the last time. Rupert studied war under Henry, Prince of Orange: at thirteen he was present at the siege of Rhymberg; at eighteen he commanded a regiment of cavalry. After her husband’s death, Elizabeth was advised to send her two elder sons to colonise in distant countries; the elder in Madagascar, and Rupert in the West Indies: but the high spirited Princess declared “no son of hers, should become a knight errant.” Prince Rupert’s later career might well have entitled him to the epithet, Elizabeth so much disapproved. He distinguished himself in several campaigns, was made prisoner, and at the termination of his captivity, accepted the invitation of his uncle, Charles I., to repair to England.

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The Queen of Bohemia had considered herself aggrieved, by the unsatisfactory replies which her brother returned to her frequent applications for sympathy and assistance, but on the arrival of Rupert and his brother in England, the former was granted an English title, installed as Knight of the Garter, and made Commander in Chief of Cavalry. The Prince was zealous and loyal, and his courage undoubted; but he laid himself open to just censure by his imprudence, and temerity. Charles loved his nephew, but the blame which attached to his tactics in the fatal battle of Naseby, was confirmed by the Prince’s feeble defence of Bristol, for the safety of which place, he had pledged himself. The King deprived him of his command, and wrote him so severe a letter, that Rupert sought an audience of his royal uncle at Belvoir Castle, indignantly denying the charge of treason imputed to him, but honestly confessing his imprudence, and shortcomings. Pepys many years afterwards, alludes to this incident when he says: “The Prince was the boldest attaquer in the world, and yet in the defence of Bristol,[141] no man ever did worse, wanting in patience and a seasoned head, etc.” Pepys did not love Rupert, who once rated him roundly, in the presence of the King, Charles II. The same authority says on another occasion, that the nation was displeased at Rupert’s obtaining a command, as he was accounted a “most unhappy man.” His next adventure was especially so: Charles I. sent him to Ireland, in charge of that portion of the fleet, which had remained faithful to the royal cause, but his unlucky star was still in the ascendant. He was compelled to seek safety at Lisbon, pursued by the Parliamentary squadron, and after many losses, and disasters, he took refuge in America, where he remained some years. Thence to France, where, says, one of his biographers, “ses aventures romanesques, ses esclaves Maures, son train bizarre, le firent un objet de curiosité et le héros de plus d’une intrigue galante.” He returned to England on the restoration of Charles II. “The Prince Rupert is come to Court,” says Pepys; “welcome to nobody;” yet his great courage and the frequency of his exploits in the war against Holland, when he[142] was appointed to a command in the fleet, first under the Duke of York, then conjointly with the Duke of Albemarle, and finally in 1673, when he had the sole command, might well have entitled him to the gratitude of the King and the nation.

The wear, and tear, of an adventurous life, the effects of a deep wound, received in Flanders, determined Rupert at length, to retire from public life, and seek the repose so necessary to him. He was made Governor of Windsor Castle, and he found great resource in the cultivation of arts, which had always occupied the few leisure hours he had hitherto enjoyed; physics, chemistry, the improvement of fire-arms, etc. Horace Walpole says: “It is a trite observation, that gunpowder was invented by a monk, and printing by a soldier: and it is an additional honour to the latter profession, to have invented mezzotinto;” upon which he relates the following anecdote: Prince Rupert, when in Holland, was one morning, attracted by seeing a sentinel rubbing the barrel of his musket, vehemently. On approaching, and examining the gun, he found[143] that the damp of the early morning, had rusted the metal, and this, combined with friction, had produced a kind of arabesque, or pattern on the metal, like a friezed work eaten in with numerous little dots, part of which the soldier was scraping away. This set the Prince thinking, how he could produce a lasting effect of the same kind, and in combination with his friend, Vaillant the painter, he invented a steel roller, cut with tools to make teeth in the manner of a file, or rasp, with projecting points which produced the black ground, and this being scraped away, or diminished at pleasure, left the gradations of light.

Prince Rupert was never married, but he left two illegitimate children.

Grammont says: “Il étoit brave, et vaillant, jusqu’à la témérité. Il avoit le génie fécond en expériences de mathématique, et quelque talent pour la chimie. Poli jusqu’à l’excès, quand l’occasion ne le demandait pas, fier, et même brutal quand il étoit question de se humaniser, son visage étoit sec, et dur….” But Lely, and Vandyck paint more comely portraits of the brave “Knight-errant.” He was a messmate[144] of the Earl of Sandwich, and it is no wonder the portraits of the two brave sailors, should hang together in the Englishman’s ancestral home. Lely painted, (as we are told by Pepys,) “all the Flaggmen; and in his studio I saw the pictures of the Earl of Sandwich, Prince Rupert, etc.” But from his account of the campaign at sea, he leads us to believe that both Rupert, and the Duke of Albemarle, were jealous of the popularity, and fame which Lord Sandwich has justly gained in England, through his prowess.


Henrietta Maria, Queen of England:

By VANDYCK.

Three-quarter Length.

(White Satin Dress. Lace, Pearls. Standing by a Table, on which the Crown is placed.)

Born, 1607. Died, 1669.—Daughter of Henry IV., King of France, by Marie de Medicis. Attracted the notice of Charles, Prince of Wales, on his route to Madrid, where[145] he travelled in disguise, with the Duke of Buckingham, to ask the hand of the Infanta of Spain. On the failure of the negociations between France and Spain, Charles remembered the young French Princess, and became her suitor. The marriage was concluded, under circumstances which appeared to promise great prosperity; but alas, for human foresight! the young Queen’s life was destined to be one prolonged struggle, of sorrow, distress, and difficulty. She took refuge in France, soon after the birth of her daughter Henrietta, and was there warmly welcomed, and treated with liberality by the King; her constant pecuniary difficulties being usually attributed to her generosity, to the English Royalists.

When Charles I., took leave of the Princess Elizabeth, who had remained in England, he sent his last farewell to the Queen, assuring her that during the whole course of their union, he had never been unfaithful to her, even in thought. In 1660, Charles II. having been proclaimed King in London, his mother, accompanied by the Princess Henrietta, visited him, ostensibly to offer her congratulations, but[146] really to recover part of her dowry, and also to prevent, if possible, the acknowledgement of the private marriage of her son, the Duke of York, with Anne Hyde. But her opposition to this marriage was overruled, from political, and prudential motives. On her return to Paris, and after the union of her daughter, with the Duke of Orleans, Queen Henrietta Maria, bought a house at Colombes, where she lived a most retired life. “Elle étoit,” says Madame de Motteville, “sans nulle façon.” In her frugal manner of life, and the courage she displayed in danger, and vicissitude, this Princess resembled her father, the great Henry. She was much disfigured by illness and sorrow: “Elle avoit même la taille un peu gatée; sa beauté,” says Madame de Motteville, “n’avoit duré que l’espace d’un matin, et l’avoit quitté avant son midi; elle maintenoit que les femmes ne peuvent plus être belles, passé vingt-deux ans. Elle avoit infiniment de l’esprit; elle étoit agréable dans la société, honnête, douce, et facile; son tempérament étoit tourné du côté de la gaieté.” Henrietta Maria died suddenly at her house at Colombes, and was buried at[147] St. Denis, but she desired that her heart should rest in the Convent of Ste. Marie de Chaillot, a Sisterhood, for whom she had much affection.


Edward, first Earl of Sandwich:

By SIR PETER LELY.

(When Young. In a Brown Dress. Pointing to a Globe. Curtain in Background.)

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MORNING ROOM.


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Sarah, Duchess of Marlborough:

By SIR GODFREY KNELLER.

Half-Length: Oval.

(Light Coloured Dress. Blue Scarf.)

Born, 1658. Died, 1744.—The youngest daughter of Richard Jennings, Esq., of Sundridge, near St. Albans, by the daughter and heiress, of Sir Gifford Thornhurst. She was presented when quite young at Court, where her sister Frances, (afterwards Lady Tyrconnel) had already distinguished herself by her laxity of conduct, as well as her beauty. Sarah’s features may not have rivalled her sister’s in regularity, but her countenance was full of expression, her complexion delicate, and the profusion of her fair hair, formed a most attractive combination. She became the centre of a host of adorers, amongst whom she preferred, in spite of his poverty, “the young, handsome, graceful, insinuating, and eloquent Churchill.” On his side, the young Colonel who, even in early days, had established a character[151] for avarice, was so enamoured of the portionless girl, as to refuse a rich heiress with a plain face, who had been proposed to him. But in her beauty, her ambition, her indomitable will, and the close friendship which united her to the Princess (afterwards Queen) Anne, the bride brought her husband, a dowry which made him “a Duke, a sovereign Prince of the Empire, the Captain General of a great coalition, the arbiter between mighty Princes, and the wealthiest subject in Europe.” The friendship between Lady Churchill, and Anne, the tyranny which the high-spirited, hot-tempered and wilful Lady of the Bedchamber, exercised over her royal mistress, for many years, are matters too well known, to be here recapitulated. The romantic friendship of Mrs. Morley, and Mrs. Freeman, the manner in which Anne as Princess, and Queen, even after her marriage to the Prince of Denmark, gave herself up to the dominion of her favourite, until the self-imposed yoke became unbearable, and was suddenly and completely discarded, are historical facts, bound up with public events.

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The Duchess of Marlborough was supplanted by her own protégée, Mrs. Masham, and peremptorily dismissed, in spite of prayers, rages and “scenes.” Voltaire says: “Quelques paires de gants qu’elle refusa à la Reine, un verre d’eau qu’elle laissa tomber par une méprise! sur la robe de Madame Masham, changèrent la face de l’Europe,” alluding to the political changes, which ensued on the downfall of Sarah, Duchess of Marlborough. In her latter days, her temper, embittered by these untoward circumstances, became ungovernable; she quarrelled with her husband, her son-in-law, her grandchildren, and gave way to the most violent outbursts of passion. The Duke of Marlborough was a constant, and affectionate husband, and it is related that on one occasion, when he strove to pacify her rage by a compliment to the beauty of her luxuriant hair, she seized the scissors, cut it off, and flung it in his face. When the Duke died, the long fair tresses, were found carefully preserved in a drawer.

Sarah was a widow for twenty-two years; in spite of her age, perhaps on account of her immense fortune, the Duke of Somerset, and Lord Coningsby were both suitors, for her hand. To the latter, she replied, after reminding him that she was sixty-three, “but were I only thirty, and could you lay the world at my feet, I would never bestow on you, the heart and hand, which belonged exclusively to John, Duke of Marlborough.”


John, Second Duke of Montagu:

By PHILLIPS.

Full-Length.

(Right Hand on a Table, Left on the Back of a Chair, on which a Greyhound is standing. Court Suit, Star, Garter, and Ribbon of the Order.)

Born, 1682. Died, 1749.—The only surviving son of Ralph, first Duke of Montagu, by his first wife, the Countess of Northumberland. In 1705, he married Lady Mary Churchill, youngest daughter, and co-heiress of the Duke of Marlborough, by Sarah Jennings, his wife, by whom he had several sons, who all died in their childhood, as did one of his daughters;[153] but two survived him, Lady Isabella, married to the Duke of Manchester, and Lady Mary, to the Earl of Cardigan. He was Lord High Constable of England, at the coronation of George I., Knight of the Garter, and one of the first Knights of the Bath, as well as Great Master of that new Order, with several other honours. Sarah, Duchess of Marlborough, in her unpublished volume of remarks and axioms, (which does her little honour) is very hard upon her son-in-law. She declares he had no just claim for place, or favour on the Government, on account of services, by sea, or land; but this statement is emphatically contradicted, in a marginal note, stating that Montagu had served under the great Duke of Marlborough himself. He seems by all accounts, to have been a kind hearted, and benevolent man, but undoubtedly whimsical, and eccentric; witness an anecdote told of him in one of the periodicals of the day. In his walks in St. James’s Park, he was attracted by the daily sight of an old gentleman, of military aspect, but shabby, and poverty stricken in his dress, who usually sat, and sunned himself, on one of the benches in[154] the avenue. The Duke sent his servant, one day to the old soldier, and asked him, to come and visit him. Nothing loth, but much bewildered, the stranger followed the lacquey, through the corridors, and well furnished rooms, to the ducal presence. Here he was asked, and had to tell, his sorrowful tale. He had served his country, but had no pension; he had married a wife without a dowry, and she and her children were half starving, down in Wales, while he had come to London on the sad, and hopeless errand, of getting something, to live upon. He had a wretched room, where he slept, and spent most of his time, on a bench, in the Park. The Duke listened, and fed him, gave him a trifling sum, and said he hoped to see him again, ere very long. Accordingly, some time afterwards, the old man received a letter from the Duke, begging him to come to dinner, telling him that he had a most mysterious, and confidential communication, to make. The soldier, to whom his whole acquaintance with Montagu appeared like a fairy tale, brushed up his thread-bare suit, and presented himself to the Duke, who in a most private, and mysterious manner, assured[155] him, that there was a certain lady, who admired him very much, and who had earnestly desired an interview with him; indeed, the Duke went on to say, so entirely was her heart set on the meeting, that he had consented to be the go-between. More bewildered than ever, the soldier pleaded his wrinkled face, his scanty grey hairs, and, above all, his allegiance to the poor wife, far away among the Welsh mountains. The Duke was jocose, treated the matter with levity, and gave his arm to lead the astonished guest to the hospitable board, where the lady would be seated; and there indeed, smiling amid her tears, sate his wife, and her children, and after a sumptuous repast, the happy couple left the ducal roof, with their pockets sufficiently well lined (with the addition of a small pension also promised by their noble friend), to keep the wolf from their humble door. Such whimsical fancies as these, would not have suited the stern and economical Sarah, Duchess of Marlborough.

John, Duke of Montagu, died at Montagu House, Whitehall, in the sixty-eighth year of his age, when his title became extinct.


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John, Fourth Earl of Sandwich:

By ZOFFANY.

Small Full-length.

(Seated near a Table, on which he rests his Left Arm. Crimson and Gold Court Dress.)


Miss Margaret Ray:

By GAINSBOROUGH.

Half-Length.

(Blue Dress.)

Born, 1742, Murdered, 1779.—Some say the daughter of a stay-maker in Covent Garden, others that she was born at Elstree, in Herts, where her father was a labourer. In early life, she was apprenticed to a dressmaker in Clerkenwell, but her first meeting with John, fourth Earl of Sandwich, was at a shop in Tavistock-street, where he was buying some neck-cloths. Struck with her extreme beauty,[157] his lordship took her under his protection, established her at Hinchingbrook, and superintended her education. Margaret repaid the pains that were bestowed on her, but her especial talent was for music, and under the tuition of Mr. Bates, (afterwards secretary to Lord Sandwich) and Signor Giardini, her sweet and powerful voice, was fully developed, and she sang to perfection, in the Oratorio of “Jephthah,” in Italian bravuras, and in the catches and glees, which so often formed part of the varied entertainments, at Hinchingbrook. Every Christmas, indeed, Lord Sandwich caused an oratorio to be performed, at his country house, where Miss Ray was the principal attraction, although she had several rivals in musical talent, both professional, and amateur. On one occasion Mr. Cradock, an intimate friend of Lord Sandwich’s, tells us that he accompanied his lordship, Mr. Bates, Miss Ray and another lady, to Vauxhall, where some musical friends met them, and they sang catches, and glees, in the box, to the delight of the audience, who greatly admired the beauty and vocal powers, of the fair (to them) unknown performer.

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Miss Ray was remarkable, while under Lord Sandwich’s roof, for her discreet and circumspect conduct, in a most equivocal position; and his lordship appears to have been very strict, lest anyone, as he expressed himself, “should exceed the boundary line,” that he had drawn. For example, at the oratorios where she shone so conspicuously, the society were not expected to notice her, and she herself was sadly embarrassed one evening, when Lady Blake advanced between the scenes to converse with her, the singer well knowing such a step would arouse the noble host’s displeasure; a well grounded suspicion as he went so far as to say “such a trespass might occasion the overthrow of our music meetings.” The Bishop of Lincoln’s wife pays this tribute to Margaret: “She was so assiduous to please, so excellent and unassuming, I felt it cruel to sit directly opposite to her, and yet find it impossible to notice her.”

At these oratorios, the Duke of Manchester’s band generally attended, and Lord Sandwich took the direction of the kettledrums, as, indeed, he sometimes did at public music[159] meetings, at Leicester (and elsewhere), where Mr. Cradock says: “The Earl and the Otaheitan, Omai, (whom he had brought with him) divided public attention.”

Mr. Cradock was with Lord Sandwich, when he first became acquainted with Hackman. My Lord had taken Mr. Cradock to Cambridge, to vote for a candidate for a professorship in whom he was interested, and brought his friend back with him, in his chaise to Hinchingbrook. Under the gateway they met a neighbour, Major Reynolds, with a brother officer, who was presented as Captain Hackman. Lord Sandwich, with his usual hospitality, invited the two officers to a family dinner, and in the evening, he and Miss Ray encountered Major Reynolds, and Mr. Cradock at whist, Captain Hackman preferring to overlook the game. There can be little doubt that Miss Ray inspired the young soldier with love, at first sight. Hackman at that time was on a recruiting party at Huntingdon; he became a constant visitor at Hinchingbrook, and it seems that whenever Miss Ray drove out, he constantly waylaid her, bowing low as she passed. There was[160] evidently a great difference of opinion as to Miss Ray’s feelings, with regard to her new admirer. One account of the transaction affirms that she was not insensible to his devotion, and that the black servant, believing she was false, imparted his suspicions to Lord Sandwich. The same authority states that his Lordship taxed his beautiful companion with her inconstancy, and either through his influence, or that of Major Reynolds, Hackman obtained a recommendation to Sir John Swaine, Adjutant-general in Ireland, where he remained nearly two years. But he never forgot the beautiful Margaret, and leaving the army, he entered the Church, obtained a living in Norfolk, and wrote her a passionate love letter, in which he proposed marriage, and went so far as to promise tenderness, and protection for her children by Lord Sandwich. This offer was refused with decision, whether from fidelity to her protector, anxiety for her children’s welfare, or indifference to her adorer, we cannot say. Her situation was certainly not one of calm enjoyment. One evening at the Admiralty she complained to Mr. Cradock, that she did not believe either Lord Sandwich, or[161] herself was safe to go out, from the fury of the mob, and that coarse ballads, and libels were sung under the windows, which looked upon the Park. Bursting into tears, she besought Mr. Cradock to intercede with Lord Sandwich, to make some settlement on her, not from mercenary motives, but because she wished to relieve my Lord from greater expense, and to go on the stage. Her voice was at its best, Italian music her forte, and she was sure that through her friend Signor Giardini, and Mr. Cradock’s friends Mrs. Brooke and Mrs. Yates, she could secure an advantageous engagement. As might have been supposed, Mr. Cradock declined to interfere, and the matter dropped.

In the meantime, Hackman, on the receipt of Miss Ray’s letter, which put a stop to his long cherished hopes, stung to the quick, and in such distress of mind, as brought him to the verge of madness, rushed up to London. He strove to effect an interview with the singing master, Signor Galli, but this was prevented by the vigilance of Lord Sandwich, who entrusted the Italian with the task of informing Mr. Hackman that Miss Ray would have no more[162] communication with him. He took a lodging in Duke’s Court, St. Martin’s Lane, and on the 7th of April, 1779, he passed the morning in reading Blair’s Sermons, and dined with his sister, and her husband, a newly married couple. He then went out, proceeded to the Admiralty, and seeing Lord Sandwich’s coach at the door, he imagined it likely that Miss Ray might be going in it, to call on her friend Signora Galli, at her lodgings in the Haymarket. Thence he walked to the Cannon Coffee-house, Charing Cross, and watching the carriage pass, he followed it in time to see Miss Ray, and Signora Galli enter Covent Garden Theatre. On going in, he was distracted with jealousy at seeing her addressed by “a gentleman of genteel and handsome appearance,” whom he afterwards found to be Lord Coleraine. The performance was “Love in a Village.” He went out, furnished himself with a brace of loaded pistols, and returned to Covent Garden. When the play was over, he kept Miss Ray with her two companions in view, through the lobby, where there was a great crowd, until she was under the piazza, and her coach was called, in[163] the name of Lady Sandwich. He was pushed down by a chairman, running suddenly against him, but recovered himself in time to pursue his victim to her coach, in which Signora Galli had already taken her place. Stepping between Miss Ray, who had accepted the arm of Mr. McNamara (of Lincoln’s Inn Fields), and the coach, he discharged his right hand pistol at her, and his left at himself. The beautiful and unfortunate woman, raised her hand to her head, and dropped down dead at his feet. Hackman fell at the same moment, but finding that he was still alive, he beat himself about the head, with the pistol, crying to the bystanders to kill him. The murderer, and the victim, were both carried to the Shakespeare Tavern; the corpse lay in one room, while the wounded man was attended to, in another. He enquired for her, and declared he only meant to kill himself, and had failed in his object. He was taken before Sir John Fielding, who committed him to Tothill Fields Bridewell, and afterwards to Newgate, where he was constantly watched to prevent his making away, with himself. He was attended on his trial by a friend, and on[164] first entering the court, was much agitated, sighing, and weeping while the evidence was being given, yet at the same time showing a courageous, and even noble deportment as concerned his own fate. He made a most pathetic speech, in which he confessed his guilt, but attributed it to sudden phrensy, as regarded murder. The suicide, he said, was premeditated. He had no wish to avoid punishment; he was too unhappy to care for life, now she was gone, and he submitted himself to the judgment of Almighty God. A letter found in his pocket, to his brother-in-law, taking leave of him, and speaking in the most affectionate terms of his “beloved woman,” seemed to bear out his testimony. His hearers were much affected, but on his return to the cell he became composed, and said he was rejoiced to think, his time on earth was so short. After his sentence was passed, he received the following letter in prison:

“If the murderer of Miss —— wishes to live, the man he has most injured, will use all his interest to procure his life.”

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The prisoner’s reply was as follows:

“Condemned Cell, Newgate.

“The murderer of her, whom he preferred, far preferred to life, suspects the hand from which he has just received, such an offer as he neither desires, nor deserves. His wishes are for death, not life. One wish he has: Could he be pardoned in this world, by the man he has most injured? Oh, my Lord, when I meet her in another world, enable me to tell her—if departed spirits are not ignorant of earthly things—that you forgive us both, and that you will be a father to her dear children.”

He suffered death calmly, and thus ended the career of a man, who seemed formed for better things.

Mr. Cradock, who was sincerely attached both to Lord Sandwich, and the unfortunate cause of so much sorrow, tells us that on the day following the murder, he went to the Admiralty, and saw old James, the black servant, whom he found overwhelmed with grief. It was he who began to break the terrible news to his master, when Lord Sandwich interrupted him, by bidding him “allude no more to the ballads and libels, of which he had heard enough.” “Alas,” said the faithful old man, “it is something more terrible than that.”[166] Others then came in from the theatre and related the dreadful intelligence. Lord Sandwich, stood for awhile transfixed with horror, then raising his hand exclaimed, “I could have borne anything but this,” and rushed upstairs, desiring that no one should follow him. He shunned society, for a long time after the dreadful catastrophe, and his friend Cradock tells us, that he went to see him, and found him terribly depressed one day, sitting under the portrait of Miss Ray, “a speaking likeness;” doubtless the one in question.

By Miss Ray, Lord Sandwich had four children, viz., Admiral Montagu, Basil Montagu, Q.C., John Montagu, and Augusta, married to the Comte de Viry, of Savoy, an Admiral in the Sardinian Navy.

This beautiful portrait by Gainsborough, belonged to Admiral Montagu, and was purchased by John, seventh Earl of Sandwich, in 1857, of a picture dealer, at the instigation of Mr. Green, of Evans’s Rooms, who told him he much wished to possess it himself, having a collection of portraits of celebrities, but the price was beyond his mark.


[167]

Lady Louisa Corry, Afterwards Countess of Sandwich:

By HAMILTON.

Small Half-length.

John William, Seventh Earl of Sandwich:

By the HON. HENRY GRAVES.

Half-Length.

(Peer’s Coronation Robes, over Lord Lieutenant’s Uniform.)


Mary, Countess of Sandwich:

By the HON. HENRY GRAVES.

Oval.

(Leaning on her Hand.)

Born, 1812. Died, 1859.—She was the youngest daughter of the first Marquis of[168] Anglesey, by his second wife, Lady Emily Cadogan, (whose first husband was Lord Cowley.) Lady Mary Paget was married in 1838, to John William, seventh Earl of Sandwich, and died, universally regretted, on the 20th of February, 1859, in Curzon Street, Mayfair.


Edward George Henry, Viscount Hinchingbrook, and his Brother, The Hon. Victor Alexander Montagu:

By HURLSTONE.

(Children of the Seventh Earl of Sandwich.)

Lord Hinchingbrook was born in London on July 13, 1839. Educated at Eton. Joined the Second Battalion Grenadier Guards, December 18, 1857. Lieutenant and Captain, May, 1862. Adjutant, 1864. Captain and Lieut-Colonel, July, 1870. Has been employed as Commandant of a School of Instruction of the Reserve Forces, and Military Secretary at Gibraltar. Was attached to Lord Stratford de Redcliffe’s special Embassy to Constantinople, 1858. Accompanied[169] H.R.H. the Prince of Wales to North America, 1860. Attached to Lord Breadalbane’s Mission, (to confer the Order of the Garter on the King of Prussia) 1861, and in the same year to Lord Clarendon’s Embassy, when the King of Prussia was crowned at Königsberg. On the occasion of the marriage of H.R.H. the Duke of Edinburgh, when Lord Sydney represented the Queen of England at the Court of St. Petersburg, Lord Hinchingbrook accompanied his uncle to the Russian capital; and in 1875 he went with Sir John Drummond Hay, K.C.B. to the Court of the Sultan of Morocco. Was elected M.P. for Huntingdon, February, 1876.

The Hon. Victor Montagu was born in 1841. Entered the Royal Navy in 1853, as naval cadet on board H.M.S. “Princess Royal,” Captain Lord Clarence Paget (his uncle). On the declaration of war with Russia, in 1854, he proceeded to the Baltic, with the Fleet under Sir Charles Napier. Early in 1855 he went to the Black Sea, and remained on that station till the fall of Sebastopol. In 1856 he sailed to China, under Admiral Keppel in the “Raleigh,” 50 guns, (which vessel was lost off Macao, in[170] April, 1857,) and in the Chinese War, he served in a gun-boat at the operations up the Canton River. On the news of the Mutiny in India, in 1857, Victor Montagu was ordered to join the “Pearl” at Hong-kong, and left in company with the “Shannon” for Calcutta, where he landed with the Naval Brigade, and joined the field force under Brigadier Rowcroft, and Sir Hope Grant, with which he was employed until February, 1859.

In the Oude and Goruckpore districts, he was in seventeen out of twenty-six engagements; and in 1859 he returned to England, having seen four campaigns before he was eighteen years of age. He afterwards served as lieutenant in the Channel, and Mediterranean Fleets, and in 1864, was appointed to H.M.S. “Racoon,” in which vessel H.R.H. Prince Alfred was also serving as lieutenant. In 1866, he was Flag-Lieutenant to Lord Clarence Paget, Commander in Chief in the Mediterranean; and in the autumn of the same year commanded the “Tyrian” gun-boat on the same station. In 1867, he was promoted, returned to England, and has since commanded the “Rapid” steam sloop in the Mediterranean.

[171]

In 1867, Victor Montagu married Lady Agneta Harriet Yorke, youngest daughter of the fourth Earl of Hardwicke, by the daughter of the first Lord Ravensworth, by whom he has two daughters, Mary Sophie, and Olga Blanche, and one son, George Charles.


The Honourable Oliver George Powlett Montagu:

By the HON. HENRY GRAVES.

Born, 1844. Youngest son of the seventh Earl of Sandwich. Educated at Eton. Appointed lieutenant in the Huntingdon Rifle Regiment of Militia, in 1862; cornet in the Ninth Lancers, in 1863; exchanged into the Royal Horse Guards, in 1865.


Portrait of a Lady, supposed to be Lady Rochester:

By SIR PETER LELY.

Half-Length.

(Blue Dress with Pearls.)

[172]


[173]

CORRIDOR—DOWNSTAIRS.


Edward, Viscount Hinchingbrook:

By KNELLER.

Three-quarter Length: Oval.

(Red Jacket with Frogs. Blue Cap.)

Born, 1692. Died, 1722.—The eldest son of Edward, third Earl of Sandwich, by the daughter of the Earl of Rochester. Member for the Town, and subsequently for the County of Huntingdon; also Lord Lieutenant, and Custos Rotulorum; was in the army. Noble says his unfortunate father “became so much a cypher, that all the duties of his station devolved on Lord Hinchingbrook, who was an amiable, active and spirited young man.” He married Elizabeth, only daughter of Alexander Popham, Esq., of Littlecote, Wilts, by Lady Anne Montagu, (afterwards Harvey) daughter of Ralph, Duke of Montagu. His portrait and that of his wife, are alluded to by Noble.

Lord Hinchingbrook, in his early youth, appears to have been a great swain, if we can trust the bantering style of the Tatler, in the[174] pages of which, he figures constantly under the soubriquet of Cynthio. In a paper dated White’s Chocolate House, North Side of Russell Street, Covent Garden, he comes in, and gives an elaborate lecture on the art of ogling.

He says: “Twenty men can speak eloquently, and fight manfully, and a thousand can dress genteelly at a mistress, who cannot gaze skilfully.” He gives the benefit of his experience, on the subject at some length; speaks of the late fallings off in the passion of love, boasting that he himself is the only man who is true to the cause. One day, while cleaning his teeth at the window of a tavern, he caught sight of a beautiful face, looking from the window of a coach, and he followed the fair object up, and down the town—a long time, indeed, without success; but this incident is proof of his zeal. There is a ludicrous account of his (imaginary) death from a broken heart; his companions had hoped, that good October and fox hunting would have averted this catastrophe. They propose to erect a monument to his memory, with a very long inscription. The paper is signed by the witty, and mirth-loving Dick[175] Steele. Collins says Lord Hinchingbrook died much regretted: “He had a martial spirit, tempered with fine breeding, which made his company much coveted, and gained him great ascendancy in the House of Commons.” He was a strenuous upholder of the Protestant Succession, and of the rights and liberty of the subject.

By his wife he had two daughters, Mary and Elizabeth, and a son who succeeded his grandfather in the Earldom of Sandwich.


Lady Anne Montagu:

By KNELLER.

Three-quarter Length.

(Blue Satin Gown. Rows of Pearls round the Waist. A Scarf over the Shoulder, a long White Glove in Left Hand.)

Born, 1674. Died, 1742.—The only surviving daughter of Ralph, first Duke of Montagu, by his first wife, the Countess of Northumberland. Lady Anne’s delicate health in her childhood,[176] seems to have given great uneasiness, to her mother. Lady Rachel Russell often mentions the little fair, pale girl. She married; first, Alexander Popham, Esq., of Littlecote, in Wiltshire, (by whom she had Elizabeth, Viscountess Hinchingbrook); and secondly, Daniel Harvey, of Combe, in Surrey. The parents were friends, and cousins, and Lady Northumberland often visited at Combe. By her second marriage, she had no children.

St. Evremond constantly corresponded with Lady Anne, who was a friend of the Duchesse de Mazarin, and an habituée of her salon at Chelsea. He writes a poetical epistle complaining of the cold of this miserable bit of a room, where all the doors were left open, and where the beautiful hostess occasionally cheated at cards. All this, however, is couched in most flattering language, extolling the charms, moral (query) and physical, of the lovely gambler. “Prenez garde à Madame,” he goes on to say, after describing his losses at Ombre, for she will cheat you “avec la plus belle main du monde.”

La Fontaine dedicated one of his Fables, to Lady Anne Harvey, who had a great admiration[177] for his talent. St. Evremond says: “L’estime que M. de la Fontaine s’est acquis en Angleterre étoit si grand, que Madame Harvey, et quelques autres personnes d’un très grand mérite, ayant su, qu’il ne vivoit pas commodément à Paris, résolurent de l’attirer auprès d’elles, oû rien ne lui auroit manqué.” La Fontaine was grateful to his English friends, but declined, on the plea of being too old, to seek a strange country. Lady Anne, or Madame Harvey, as the Abbé calls her, is constantly mentioned in the letters of St. Evremond.


Elizabeth, Third Countess of Sandwich:

By KNELLER.

Three-quarter Length.

(Seated. Resting on her Left Arm. Right Hand holding Flowers. Loose Coloured Déshabille.)


[178]

General Daniel Harvey:

By KNELLER.

Three-quarter Length.

(In Armour, with a Blue Scarf. Right Hand resting on Hip; Left on the Hilt of Sword.)

Born, ——. Died, 1732.—The youngest son of Sir Edward Harvey, of Combe, near Kingston-on-Thames, by Lady Elizabeth, daughter of Francis, first Earl of Bradford. In 1712, he was appointed Lieutenant-governor of Guernsey, which office he held till 1726. He married his cousin, Lady Anne, daughter of Ralph, Duke of Montagu, by the Countess of Northumberland, relict of Alexander Popham, of Littlecote, Wilts, by whom he had no issue. General Harvey died at Mitcham, in Surrey, and was buried within the rails of the altar, in that church.


[179]

Captain the Hon. William Montagu:

By T. HIGHMORE.

Three-quarter Length.

(In a Brown and Red Uniform laced with Gold. Pointing to a Ship with his Right Hand; holding a Telescope in his Left.)

Born, 1720. Died, 1757.—He was the youngest son of Edward, Viscount Hinchingbrook, and entered the Navy, at an early age, in which profession he was destined to distinguish himself, not only by his courage, and skill as an officer, but by his extraordinary eccentricity, which gained him the soubriquet of “Mad Montagu.” He commanded the “Mermaid” at the taking of Cape Breton, in 1745, whence he brought letters from Commodore Warren, with an account of the surrender of the fortress of Louisburg, and the adjoining territories, after a siege of forty-nine days. He commanded the “Prince Edward,” and the “Bristol,” and took the “Orvena,” a rich Spanish register ship. He appears to have been in constant scrapes, both private, and public, frequently writing to[180] his brother, Lord Sandwich, in extenuation of some escapade, usually accompanied with a confession that he had erred through his propensity for drinking. But his genial humour, and untiring fun, generally extricated him from the difficulties, into which his folly had plunged him, and his mad freaks were a constant topic of conversation, and amusement. When under the orders of Sir Edward Hawker, in 1755, he solicited permission to go to town. The Admiral, thinking to compromise the matter and palliate his refusal by a jest (as he had no intention of complying with so improper a request), said he might go in his barge as far as he pleased from the ship, but no farther. Captain Montagu immediately caused a truck to be constructed at Portsmouth, to be drawn by horses; on this truck he placed his barge filled with provisions and necessaries for three days, and entering it with his men, gave orders to imitate the action of rowing with the oars. Sir Edward, it is said, having heard of this wonderful proceeding, in every sense of the word, soon after the boat was landed, sent the coveted permission to the Mad-cap.

[181]

In the sea-fight of May 3rd, 1747, Captain Montagu, and Captain Fincher, were rival competitors for fame. The “Bristol” having got up to the “Invincible,” and brought her to action, the “Pembroke” (Captain Fincher) attempted to get in between them, desiring Montagu, to put his helm a-starboard, or he should be aboard of him. “Run on board and be d——d! Neither you nor any other man shall come between me and my enemy,” was his answer. This action is the subject of a fine picture, in the Ship-room at Hinchingbrook, by Scott.

While commanding the same vessel in the Channel, Montagu fell in with a fleet of outward bound Dutch merchantmen, to whom he gave chase and overtook. Having done so, he ordered two boats to be manned, and sent a carpenter’s mate in each, desiring them to cut off the heads of twelve—not of the ship’s company, but of the ugliest of the grotesque ornaments with which the Dutch usually decorated the extremity of their rudders. When brought back to him, he arranged them, in as ridiculous a position, as he could devise round his cabin, and inscribed them[182] with the names of the twelve Cæsars. A jest of a more ghastly nature, is recorded of Mad Montagu. Landing one day at Portsmouth, just after a Dutch vessel had been wrecked, he perceived about a dozen of her crew lying dead, on the shore. He immediately ordered his men to put all the poor fellows’ hands, into their pockets. He then proceeded to the coffee-house, where he found the Dutch captain, with whom every one was condoling. “D—— the idle lubbers!” said Montagu, “they were too lazy to take their hands out of their breeches pockets, even to save their lives.”

The Dutch captain was naturally indignant, when Montagu proposed to bet him six dozen of wine, that if any of the crew chanced to be washed on shore, his words would be proved. The waiter was despatched to reconnoitre; the result of course, was in the English captain’s favour, and not only had the poor foreigner to pay the forfeit, but the laugh on a most melancholy matter was turned against him. Captain Montagu sat in Parliament for a borough in Cornwall. He married Charlotte, daughter of Francis Nailor, of Offord,[183] Huntingdonshire, but died in 1757, without issue.


John, fourth Earl of Sandwich:

By ZOFFANY.

Three-quarter Length.

(In a Plum-coloured Court Suit, embroidered in Gold. Seated by a Table, on which he rests his Arm. In his Right Hand a Letter directed to himself.)


Edward Richard, Viscount Hinchingbrook:

By KNELLER.

Three-quarter Length.

(Painted at the Age of Eighteen, in 1710. In Armour. Right Hand on Hip, Left Hand on a Helmet.)


[184]

Edward, Second Earl of Sandwich:

By SIR PETER LELY.

Three-quarter Length.

(Long Fair Curling Hair, or Wig. Loose Brown Dress, Lace Cravat and Ruffles. Left Hand on Hip.)

Born, 1648. Died, 1688.—The eldest son of the first Earl, by Jemima Crewe. Born at Hinchingbrook, baptized at All Saints’ Church, Huntingdon. Pepys does not tell us much about his young Lord, but he seems to have been much attached to him. He relates how sorry he was for the misfortune that had befallen him through killing his boy, by the accidental discharge of his fowling-piece; and another time he mentions that Lord Hinchingbrook, with some other gentlemen, visited him at his house, having been to inspect the ruins of the city, (after the great fire) where he “set before them good wines of several sorts, which they took mighty respectfully, but I was glad to see my Lord Hinchingbrook.” While[185] Mistress Mallett, (the great heiress whom Lady Sandwich desired for her son’s wife) was still unsettled, “my young Lord” attended her to Tunbridge; but there she told him plainly her affections were engaged; besides, Lord Hinchingbrook was not much pleased with her vanity, and liberty of carriage. A better marriage in every respect, was in store for him, and though not quite so wealthy as Mistress Mallett, Lady Anne Boyle had a dowry of £10,000, and was indeed a great alliance, coming of a noble stock. She was daughter of Richard, second Earl of Cork, and first Earl of Burlington. The match appears to have been arranged between the parents, and confided as a secret to Pepys, before Lord Hinchingbrook himself, was acquainted with the project. It seems to have been made by Sir George Carteret: “A civil family, and a relation to my Lord Chancellor, whose son has married one of the daughters, [this was Lord Rochester, son to Lord Clarendon, who had married Lady Henrietta Boyle] and the Chancellor himself, do take it with great kindness.” What a pity that the amusing chronicle should have come to so sudden an end,[186] through the weakness of poor Pepys’ eyes; otherwise we should have heard details of how the sad news of the hero’s death was received in his family, and more particulars respecting his son and successor. We only know he attended his father’s funeral, as chief mourner, that he was sent Ambassador to Portugal in 1678, and died in 1688, being buried at Barnwell. He left issue: Edward, who succeeded him; Richard and Elizabeth, who both died unmarried.


Edward, First Earl of Sandwich:

After LELY.

Three-quarter Length.

(In a Cuirass with Red Sash. Holding a Bâton. Left Hand on the Mouth of a Cannon.)


[187]

George, Sixth Earl of Sandwich:

By BEACH.

Three-quarter Length.

(In a Trinity College Gown, over a Green Coat. Standing by a Pillar. View of Trinity College in Background.)

Born, 1791. Died, 1818.—Second son of John, fifth Earl of Sandwich, by Lady Mary, daughter and heiress of the sixth and last Duke of Bolton. He was born in Wimpole Street; married in 1804 at the house of Lord Castlereagh, in Upper Brook Street, Lady Louisa Corry, daughter of Armar, first Earl of Belmore. In 1798, he was appointed Deputy Lieutenant for Hunts, and in 1804, Lieutenant-Colonel of the Hunts Volunteers. Lord Sandwich died at Cardinal Gonsalvi’s villa, near Rome, in 1818, both he and Lady Sandwich having contracted a sincere friendship with the Cardinal. His remains were brought to England, and interred with those of his ancestors at Barnwell.

He left issue by his wife, (who survived him[188] forty-four years), one son, John William, present and seventh Earl, and two daughters; Lady Harriet, born 1805, married to Bingham Baring, (afterwards Lord Ashburton,) (she died in 1857), and Lady Caroline, born 1810, married in 1831, to Count Walewski, and died in 1834.


Edward, third Earl of Sandwich:

By CLOSTERMAN.

Full-Length.

(Blue Velvet Coat and Coronation Robes. Standing near a Table, on which is placed his Coronet.)

Born, 1670. Died, 1729.—The eldest son of Edward, second Earl of Sandwich, by Lady Anne Boyle. Born at Burlington House; married in 1691 Lady Elizabeth Wilmot, daughter of the Earl of Rochester, by whom he had one son, and one daughter. He was Master of the Horse to Prince George of Denmark, Doctor of Laws in the University of Oxford, Lord-Lieutenant and Custos-Rotulorum[189] of the County of Huntingdon. The Earl of Sandwich died at Burlington, in Yorkshire, but was buried in the family vault at Barnwell. His union with the unprincipled daughter, of an unprincipled father, was a most unhappy one. Noble affirms that his “eccentric” Countess put him in durance vile in his own house, whether on a plea of insanity, or not, does not appear; but much mystery hangs round her extraordinary proceedings. Tradition still points to an apartment, in the house at Hinchingbrook, as the place of Lord Sandwich’s imprisonment, which for many years bore the name of the “Starved Chamber,” for it is said the cruel wife denied her husband sufficient food, and would allow no one to have access to him. The dates of these transactions are difficult to identify.

[190]


[191]

SHIP ROOM.


The taking of two French Privateers and all their Prizes by the Bridgewater and Sheerness Men-of-War.

By SAMUEL SCOTT.


Vice-Admiral Anson’s Engagement with the French Squadron commanded by M. de la Jonquiere, May, 1747; fought twenty-four leagues S. E. of Cape Finisterre.

By S. SCOTT.


Engagement between the “Blast,” sloop, and two Spanish Privateers. 1745.


The taking of the Ship “Acapulco” by Commodore Anson, in the South Seas. 1743.

By S. SCOTT.


[192]

Battle of Southwold Bay, where the first Earl of Sandwich perished, May 28, 1672.

By W. VAN DE VELDE.

A case hangs near this picture, containing miniatures by Cooper, of Edward, first Earl of Sandwich, and Jemima his wife; also a fragment of a Ribbon of the Order of the Garter, and the watch; both of which were found on the body of Lord Sandwich, when washed ashore.


Engagement between the Ships “Lion” and “Elizabeth,” 1745.

By S. SCOTT.

This desperate, and sanguinary engagement was fought on the 9th of May, 1745. The “Lion” had fifty-eight guns, and four hundred and forty men, and was commanded by[193] Captain Piercy Brett. The “Elizabeth,” a sixty-four gun ship, was convoying another, of sixteen guns, with the Pretender on board. They fought for five hours, within pistol shot of each other, during which time, the frigate, with the Pretender on board, managed to make her escape. The “Elizabeth” also at length, effected her entrance into Brest Harbour. She had £400,000 on board, for the use of Charles Edward. The “Lion,” unable to pursue, lay a complete wreck on the water.


Evening. A Calm. English Man-of-War and small Craft cruising.

By VAN DE VELDE.


A Sketch for the Engagement in Southwold Bay.

W. VAN DE VELDE.


Three Sketches of the Engagement between the “Lion” and “Elizabeth.”

[194]


[195]

DINING ROOM.


Louis XIV., King of France:

By MIGNARD.

Born, 1638. Died, 1715.—The son of Louis XIII., by Anne of Austria, who was Regent during her son’s minority, though the real power was vested in Cardinal Mazarin. In this prelate’s lifetime, the King himself interfered little in public affairs, but at his death, in 1661, Louis determined to be his own Prime Minister. He married Maria Theresa, daughter of Philip IV., King of Spain. His reign was brilliant in arts, commerce, and arms, but disgraced by immorality.

As regards the exterior of the “Great Monarch,” his sister-in-law, (the Duke of Orleans’ second wife, a Princess of Bavaria,) thus describes him: “Personne n’avoit un si beau port, un aspect noble, la voix très agréable, et des manières aisées. Quand il étoit dans la foule, on n’avoit pas besoin, de demander qui étoit le Roi.”


[196]

Henry William, First Marquis of Anglesey, K.G.:

By the HON. HENRY GRAVES.

Full-Length.

(In Uniform, as Colonel of the Seventh Hussars.)

Born, 1768. Died, 1854.—Henry William Paget, the eldest child of the first Earl of Uxbridge, by the eldest daughter of Arthur Champagné, Dean of Clonmacnoise. Lord Paget was educated at Westminster, and Christ Church, and in 1793, he raised a regiment among his father’s tenantry, (the 80th Regiment of Foot, or Staffordshire Volunteers,) afterwards eminently distinguished in foreign service. At the head of his own regiment, Lord Paget joined H.R.H. the Duke of York in Flanders, and soon gave proofs of skill, and gallantry. At Turcoing, he was remarkable for his “dashing bravery,” and in the memorable retreat of Bois-le-duc, which took place under great difficulties,[197] and during intensely cold weather, Lord Paget, then only twenty-six years of age, gained great honour, and replaced Lord Cathcart at the head of the Brigade, during that nobleman’s temporary absence. After several exchanges, and promotions, he was appointed to the command of the seventh Light Dragoons, which was stationed at Ipswich with other bodies of cavalry, for drill. Here he laid the foundation of that system of discipline, which brought about an entire reform in cavalry practice. In 1790-6, he sat in Parliament.

In 1799, he accompanied the Duke of York to Holland, where he again distinguished himself, on several occasions. He became a Major-General in 1802, and a Lieutenant-General in 1808. Towards the end of this year, he was ordered to Spain, with two Brigades of cavalry, where he remained until the autumn of 1809, having reaped fresh laurels, in innumerable engagements. On his return, a piece of plate was presented to him, by the Prince Regent, the Duke of Cumberland, and the inscribed officers of the Hussar Brigade, who served under Lord Paget, “in token of their admiration[198] of his high military acquirements, and of the courage, and talent, constantly displayed in leading the Hussars to victory against the French cavalry, during the Peninsular Campaign of 1808.”

He sate in the House of Commons, till 1812, when the death of his father, removed him to the Upper House. In 1815, he was employed with the troops assembled in London, to quell the Corn Bill riots, but he was soon appointed to a nobler office, and left England in command of the cavalry of the Anglo-Belgian army. His name is well known in conjunction with the great day at Waterloo: and well did he sustain “the honour of the Household Troops,” which was his rallying cry to his men, in the frequent charges they made, on the enemy. Almost the last shot that was fired wounded our gallant soldier in the knee; amputation was considered necessary, and the leg that was ever in advance, was buried with honour, in a garden at Waterloo.

Five days after the battle, he was raised to the Marquisate, by the title of Anglesey. He was also created Knight of many Orders, both[199] British, and foreign. He rode as Lord High Steward, at the Coronation of George IV., became a Privy Councillor, was twice Lord Lieutenant of Ireland, where he was deservedly popular. He held several high posts under Government at home, and at his death was the only Field Marshal in the English Army, with the exception of Her Majesty’s Consort, and her uncle.

“It was the peculiarity,” was said of Lord Anglesey, “of his frank nature to make itself understood; it might almost be said his character could be read off at sight; he was the express image of chivalry. His politics were so liberal, as to be called radical in those days, for he was in the advance of his age; but the measures which were then opposed have since been extolled, and carried, such as Catholic Emancipation, Reform, Free Trade, etc. He was not a ‘speaker,’ and could not talk well, of what he did well.” His administration of the Ordnance Department, was remarkable for its scrupulous justice, and he was always the soldier’s true friend.

On the death of the Duke of Gordon, King[200] William IV. offered Lord Anglesey the command of the Scots Fusilier Guards. He sought an interview with the King, and after warmly expressing his gratitude, he added: “I am sure that in naming me to this honour, your Majesty has not borne in mind, the fact that Lord Ludlow lost an arm in Holland, at the head of this regiment.” The King was delighted with this proof of generosity, and Lord Ludlow had to thank his comrade, for the regiment.

Till past three score, Lord Anglesey retained a wonderful share of vigour, and activity, in spite of the loss of his limb, and the terrible nervous sufferings entailed thereby. In his last moments the ruling passion showed itself, for when his mind wandered for a few moments, the gallant veteran would enquire what brigade was on duty, and he appeared relieved, when they answered it was not his own. His death was serene; his bedroom, and the one adjoining crowded by relatives, and his last words to them were cheering.

Lord Anglesey married first in 1795, Lady Caroline Villiers, daughter of the Earl of Jersey,[201] from whom he was divorced. She re-married the Duke of Argyll, and died in 1835. By his first wife he had three sons, of whom the eldest succeeded him, and five daughters. His second wife was the daughter of Earl Cadogan, whose marriage with Lord Cowley had been dissolved. She died in 1853: by whom he had three sons and three daughters, of whom the second, became the Countess of Sandwich.

This portrait was painted by Lord Anglesey’s nephew, the Hon. Henry Graves.


William, Duke of Cumberland:

By SIR JOSHUA REYNOLDS.

Full-Length.

(In the Robes of the Garter. Standing by a Table. River, Bridge, and Castle in the Background.)

Born, 1721. Died, 1765.—The third son of George II., King of England, by Carolina Wilhelmina, daughter of the Margrave of[202] Anspach. In 1743, he was wounded by the side of his father, at the Battle of Dettingen; he was unsuccessful at Fontenoy. His name is ever coupled with the discomfiture of Charles Edward’s forces in Scotland, and their entire defeat, at the Battle of Culloden. He gained a name for severity, and cruelty, during this campaign, and is still remembered in the north as “Billy the Butcher.”

This fine portrait was presented by H.R.H., to John, fourth Earl of Sandwich, with whom he formed a friendship, at the time of the Treaty of Aix-la-Chapelle.


Maria Theresa, Queen of France:

By MIGNARD.

Born, 1638. Married, 1660. Died, 1683.—Daughter of Philip IV., King of Spain, by his first wife, Elizabeth of France. Mazarin arranged this marriage to ensure peace. The[203] Duke de Grammont went to Madrid, as Plenipotentiary in 1659, and thus addressed the King of Spain: “Sire, le Roi mon maître vous accorde la paix, et à vous, Madame, il offre son cœur, et sa couronne.” She accepted both, but was compelled to share the first, with innumerable rivals. Gentle, modest, loving, and sensitive, she was constantly insulted by the King’s favourites; yet her devotion to him, never wavered, and a kind word from her royal master, made her happy for the rest of the day. He appointed her Regent, when he went to Holland, but she was not fitted for public life. “To serve God, and honour the King,” was her golden rule. Madame d’Orléans, (the German Princess), one of the other few good women of that age, pays her sister-in-law, this tribute: “Elle étoit d’une extrême simplicité en tout; la femme la plus vertueuse, et la meilleure, du monde. Elle avoit de la grandeur, et elle savoit représenter, et tenir sa cour; elle avoit une foi entière, et sans réserve pour tout ce que le Roi lui disoit. Le Roi l’aimoit à cause de sa vertu, et de l’ardent amour qu’elle lui a constamment conservé, quoiqu’il lui fût infidèle.” On her[204] return from an expedition she had made, with her husband to Alsace and Bourgogne, the Queen fell ill and died. “Voilà,” observed “le Grand Monarque” on that occasion, “le premier chagrin qu’elle m’ait donné.” Had she been the survivor, she could not assuredly have paid Louis a similar tribute.

These two portraits, formed part of the collection of the celebrated “Capability Brown.”


John William, Seventh Earl of Sandwich:

By LUCAS.

Born, 1811. Educated at Trinity College, Cambridge; was Captain of the Corps of Gentlemen-at-Arms, in 1852, and Master of the Buckhounds, 1858-9. Colonel of the Huntingdon Rifle Militia, and High Steward of Huntingdon, Lord Lieutenant and Custos Rotulorum of Huntingdonshire. Married first; Lady Mary Paget, daughter of the first Marquis of Anglesey, by whom he had four sons and[205] two daughters, and who died in 1859. He married secondly, Lady Blanche Egerton, daughter of the first Earl of Ellesmere.


Mrs. Ruperta Howe:

By WISSING or MYTENS.

Full-Length.

(Standing by a Doric Column. Light Red Riding-dress, embroidered Petticoat, Long Coat, Waistcoat. Hat in Hand.)

Born, 1671. Died, 1741.—The natural daughter of Prince Rupert, third son of Frederick, King of Bohemia, “a studious Prince,” who being enraptured with Mrs. Hughes, a beautiful actress, bade adieu to alembics, mathematical instruments, and chemical speculations, to subdue the heart of the “impertinent gipsy.” At his death the Prince left the whole of his property in trust, with a beautiful estate he had purchased on purpose, for the use, and behoof of Mistress Hughes and their daughter.[206] Ruperta married Emanuel Scrope Howe, Esq., the second son of John Howe, Co. Gloucester, by Arabella, natural daughter of Emanuel Scrope, Baron Bolton, and Earl of Sunderland, to whom Charles II. granted the precedence of an Earl’s daughter, lawfully begotten. The husband of Ruperta was in the army, and rose to the rank of Brigadier-General. He was Groom of the Bedchamber to Queen Anne, and in 1707, went as Envoy to the Court of Hanover. He represented Morpeth, and Wigan, in Parliament, and died in 1709, having had issue three sons, William, Emanuel, and James, and one daughter, Maid of Honour to Caroline, Princess of Wales, (afterwards Queen). She died unmarried. This picture is mentioned in Noble, but the painter’s name is not given.


[207]

John, Fourth Earl of Sandwich:

By JOHN LIOTARD.

Full-Length.

(In a Turkish Costume, of Crimson, and Ermine. Green and White Turban, Yellow Slippers. Right Hand extended. Left on Hip.)

Born, 1718. Died, 1792.—he was the son of Edward, Viscount Hinchingbrook, by Elizabeth Popham. Educated at Eton, and Trinity College, Cambridge, where he distinguished himself. In 1738, he set out on his travels through Italy, Egypt, Turkey, etc., accompanied by some friends, during which time he made a collection of coins, and antiquities, of all kinds, some of which, he presented to the University of Cambridge. He wrote a book of his travels, and on his return to England, took his seat in the House of Lords, and entered on a political life. He spoke remarkably well in Parliament, and in 1744 became a Lord of the Admiralty under the Duke of Bedford, “into whose[208] favour” says a contemporary with much acrimony, “Lord Sandwich had ingratiated himself, by cricket matches, acting of plays, and intrigues.” But Horace Walpole, although he did not appear very friendly to Lord Sandwich, is constantly compelled to do him justice, in his public capacity. “He is a lively, sensible man, and very attentive to business;” and on the famous occasion of Wilkes’ libel, he again says: “I do not admire politicians, but when they are excellent in their way, give them their due; no one but Lord Sandwich could have struck a stroke like this.”

In 1746, he was appointed Plenipotentiary to the States General, and again at the Treaty of Aix-la-Chapelle, where he distinguished himself, in such a manner as to recommend him for high offices of trust, on his return to England. It was on this occasion, that at a large international dinner, toasts were passing, and the different Envoys became poetical, as well as loyal in their phraseology. The Frenchman gave “his Royal Master the Sun, who illuminates the whole world;” the Spaniard “his Master the Moon, scarcely inferior in brilliancy[209] or influence;” when Lord Sandwich rose, doubtless with the twinkle in his eye, and the laughing curl round the corners of his mouth, we see in most of his portraits, and toasted with all the honours “his Master Joshua, who made both the sun and moon to stand still.”

During the King’s absence from England, Sandwich was chosen one of the Commissioners of Government. He was also Vice-treasurer, Receiver-general, &c., for Ireland, and under the new King George III, was nominated Ambassador to Spain; but in the same year he succeeded George Grenville as First Lord of the Admiralty. Few men ever filled that office with more ability, and under his direction the maritime force of Great Britain, was kept on such a footing as enabled us to meet our numerous foes in every quarter of the globe with honour, and ensured to us the victories we gained over the Trench, Spaniards, and Dutch. Lord Sandwich was world-famed for his regularity, dispatch, and industry in business; it is said that he invented sandwiches in order to take some nourishment without interrupting his work.

The following lines were written on him and Lord Spencer:—

[210]

“Two noble Earls, whom if I quote,
Some folks might call me sinner;
The one invented half a coat,
The other half a dinner.”

He gained the name of “Jemmy Twitcher,” through a curious circumstance. Wilkes and Sandwich had once been friends, but the former having composed a scurrilous and disloyal poem, the latter was so incensed as to procure a copy and read it aloud, in the House of Lords. Just at this juncture the “Beggar’s Opera” was being acted, and when Macheath exclaimed: “But that Jemmy Twitcher should peach, I own surprises me,” the chief part of the audience, who were partisans of “Wilkes, and Liberty,” burst into a round of applause, applying the passage to Lord Sandwich, who never afterwards lost the soubriquet.

There are many passages in his life which compel us to agree with his constant censor Horace Walpole, when he says: “Bishop Warburton is at this moment reinstating Mr. Pitt’s name in the dedication of a Book of Sermons, which he had expunged for Sandwich’s. This nobleman is an agreeable companion, but[211] one whose moral character, does not exactly fit him to be the patron of sermons.” But Mr. Cradock (and none knew him better) in his most amusing reminiscences, tells us, whatever his errors may have been, Lord Sandwich was most severe in the observance of decorous language, and behaviour, under his roof. No oath, or profligate word, was ever uttered at his table. The same authority states, that in political life he underwent many persecutions, and bore daily insults, and misrepresentations with the courage of a stoic, without stooping to retaliation. “Others,” says Mr. Cradock, “received emoluments, but Lord Sandwich retired without any remuneration, for his services.” His public career lasted for more than half a century, when he made Hinchingbrook his chief abode. He spoke French and Italian fluently, was acquainted with the German, and Spanish languages, and had a smattering of the oriental tongues.

In the midst of all his hospitality, he was very frugal in his own living, and was much beloved by his dependants, not forgetting Omai the Otaheitan, and the faithful black servant,[212] Jemmy, who lies buried in Brompton Churchyard, and a characteristic little sketch of whom still exists. An amusing incident occurred respecting the latter, which is worth recording. It seems that on one occasion, the day after some dramatic representation had taken place at Hinchingbrook, Lord Sandwich enquired at breakfast of a gentleman who was proverbial for cavilling, and finding fault, whether he had been satisfied with the performance. The visitor answered in the affirmative, but in so hesitating a manner, that Lord Sandwich insisted on knowing the fault. “So slight, my Lord, scarcely worth alluding to.” “The easier remedied next time.” “Well, it only struck me, that the coloured servant in the piece was not sufficiently blackened.” The noble host rose silently and rang the bell: enter Jemmy. “Jemmy,” says his master, “this gentleman says you are not black enough.” “I bery sorry, my Lord, I be as God Almighty made me.”

Miss Burney, in her youth, saw Lord Sandwich, and thus describes him: “He is a tall stout man, and looks as furrowed and[213] weatherbeaten as any sailor in the Navy; and, like most of the old set of that brave tribe, he has the marks of good nature, and joviality in every feature.” Another contemporary gives him this character: “Slow, not wearisome, a man of sense, rather than of talent; good-natured, and reliable as to promises. His house was filled with rank, beauty and talent, and every one felt at ease there. The patron of musicians, the soul of the Catch Club [he might have added a proficient on the kettledrum], although deficient in ear, and knowledge of harmony.” He had an engaging manner in private life, which put every one at their ease, although he occasionally tried his friends’ patience by a playful bantering, or what Mr. Cradock calls badgering, such as; “Ladies, here is Cradock says, a man cannot be punctual unless he wears a wig.” “No, my Lord, I said a man may be punctual, but his hair dresser may be late, and make him so.”

He dressed well, and looked “noble,” but he had a shambling unequal gait. When in Paris he took dancing lessons, and, bidding his master good-bye, told him if he came to London, he would willingly recommend or serve[214] him. “Ah, milor,” said the man, “pray do not say I taught you to dance.”

Lord Sandwich retained his faculties almost to the end, and spoke with great clearness and precision, of all the remarkable public events, of which he had been a witness, in his stirring life. He was an F.R.S., a Governor of the Charterhouse, the eldest of the elder Brothers of the Trinity House, and the oldest General in the army.

In 1740, he married Judith, third daughter of Charles, Viscount Fane, of Basildon, Berks. The marriage was unhappy, and they were separated for several years before her death. Their children were: John, who succeeded him, Edward, William Augustus, and one daughter, Mary. Lord Sandwich died at his house in Hertford Street, Mayfair, in 1792.


Edward, First Earl of Sandwich:

By SIR PETER LELY.

Full Length.

(In the Robes of the Garter.)


[215]

Mariana, Queen Regent of Spain:

By SEBASTIAN HERRERA.

Full Length.

(Seated. In a Religious Habit, the Widow’s Weeds worn in Spain.)

Born, 1631. Died, 1696.—The eldest daughter of Ferdinand III., Emperor of Germany, by the daughter of Philip III., King of Spain. Married Philip IV., in 1649. On her arrival in Spain, as a youthful bride, Mariana’s deportment had to undergo severe discipline, from the strict etiquette of the court, and the stern dignity of her royal husband, whom she shocked by the exuberance of her animal spirits, and above all, her immoderate laughter at the sallies of the Court Fool. When admonished on one occasion, she excused herself by saying it was out of her power to restrain her merriment, and that the Jester must be removed, or she must laugh on. Mariana was remarkable for the extravagance[216] and tawdriness of her dress, as may be seen in the portraits by Velasquez. Her chief beauty consisted in her magnificent hair, which she disfigured by dressing it, in an outrageous manner, with feathers, flowers, and love knots. At a period when rouge was much worn, the immoderate use of it, made her “brick-dust cheeks” a ridiculous object, and altogether, says Stirling: “She is far more interesting wearing the widow’s weeds, in which she sate to Carreno, and Herrera, than in the butterfly garb in which she flaunts on the canvas of Velasquez.” She was as inferior to her predecessor, Isabelle de Bourbon, Philip’s first wife, in qualities of mind, as in graces of person. She became a widow; and Regent of the Kingdom, on the accession of her son Charles II., in 1665.

Mariana divided her confidence, between her confessor, a German Jesuit, and a gentleman of her household, Valenzuela by name. He was remarkably handsome; and the Queen Mother made a marriage between him, and one of her German ladies, which established him in her Palace, where he became her chief confidant, and was admitted to her apartments at all[217] hours, his wife being generally present, to avoid scandal. Mariana’s faction was strongly opposed by Don John of Austria, the late King’s natural son, (by the beautiful actress, Maria Calderona.) He was handsome, intellectual, and accomplished, and in military genius alone, was he inferior to his namesake, the hero of Lepanto. His father loved him dearly, but the Queen had contrived to estrange them, some little time before Philip’s death. The ups and downs of the struggle between Don John, and Mariana were never ending: now her star appeared in the ascendant, then the evil repute of her confessor, his inefficiency in business, and the overbearing insolence of Valenzuela, brought down the influence of the Regent to a low ebb. Now at open variance with her husband’s son, now consenting with a bad grace to his participation in the Government, and then procuring for him an office at some distance from Madrid, so as to be rid of his immediate presence.

Don John ruled well, and held a little Court at Saragossa, but he and the Regent were always at variance, and so disgusted were[218] the people with her government, and that of her favourites, that many clamoured for Don John, while some went so far as to say he was the rightful heir, and that Mariana’s and Maria Calderona’s infants, had been changed.

Whether from motives of patriotism or ambition, Don John worked steadily to undermine the Regent’s power, and the vanity and ostentation of Valenzuela contributed unconsciously to the same end. He was generally supposed to be a spy, and was called the Queen’s “Duendo.”[1] At tournaments he wore the Queen Mother’s colours of black and silver, with many ostentatious mottos, which seemed to insinuate the high favour, in which he stood with that Royal Lady. One day, when the Court were hunting near the Escurial, the King shot at a stag, and wounded Valenzuela in the thigh, whereat Queen Mariana shrieked, and fell senseless. On this “hint” many spake, especially Don John, and his party, who told the King plainly, that he and Spain were not only governed by the Regent, but by her paramour. The King went[219] to Buen Retiro, and denied himself to his mother, who was desired to leave Madrid; Valenzuela was arrested, his wife and children shut up in a convent, and the “handsome, vain, well-dressed courtier, with his fine curling locks, who had considered many of the nobles of Spain beneath his notice,” was sent off to the Philippine Islands. Don John came into power, and Mariana had a small Court, which was little better than a prison, at Aranjuez, where Madame d’Aulnoy visited her. She was dressed in the manner of this portrait, served on the bended knee, and waited on by a hideous little dwarf, clothed in gold and silver brocade. Don John’s government was no sinecure; cabals were rife, and he died so suddenly that it was currently reported that he had been poisoned, at Mariana’s instigation. Be that as it may, no sooner was the death of Don John announced, than the King went off to his mother, in person, and insisted on her return to Madrid.

Charles II. had just married his second wife, an alliance which Mariana had supported from the beginning. But she did not long survive; shortly after the Peace of Ryswick, died[220] Mariana of Austria, Queen Mother of Spain; her death was supposed to have been hastened by her reluctance to consult the physicians, although her health had been failing for some time past.

This interesting portrait, together with that of her son, King Charles II., was presented by the Queen Mother, then Regent, to Edward, first Earl of Sandwich, when Ambassador, to the Court of Madrid, in 1666.

[1]Wizard or Familiar.


Barbara, Duchess of Cleveland:

By SIR PETER LELY.

Full-length.

(Seated, leaning on a Table, resting her Head on her Hand. Wears a White Satin Dress, trimmed with Blue, and Pearls.)

Born, 1640. Died, 1709.—The only child of William Villiers, Viscount Grandison, by Mary, third daughter of the first, and sister and co-heiress of the second Viscount Bayning.

Lord Grandison, of whom Clarendon gives an[221] exalted character for piety, loyalty, and valour; died in 1643, at Oxford, (of a wound which he had received a few weeks before, at the siege of Bristol), leaving a widow of 18, who five years afterwards, was re-married to Charles Villiers, Earl of Anglesey, cousin-german to her first husband. She did not long survive, and at her death, left her beautiful daughter to the stepfather’s care. It was under Lord Anglesey’s roof, that Barbara passed her early years, and we hear of her, on her first arrival in London, dressed in “a plain and countrified manner,” but this fashion was soon changed for the last “mode” of the town, and her surpassing beauty made her the object of general admiration. At the age of 16, the precocious coquette had already captivated Philip Stanhope, second Earl of Chesterfield, a young widower, who had just returned from his travels, and succeeded to his title, and property—“a beauty, a wit, a duellist,” and according to Swift, “the greatest knave in England.” His correspondence with Barbara, and her confidante and cousin, Lady Anne Hamilton (which was found in the Library of Bath House, in 1869), breathes the most ardent[222] passion, which did not however, interfere with his being called three times in Church, the same year, with the daughter of Lord Fairfax, (who subsequently married George, Duke of Buckingham).

So early in life had Barbara embarked in a career of guilt, and artifice, that in spite of her liaison with Chesterfield, she threw her spells to such purpose round Master Roger Palmer, student of the Middle Temple, second son of Sir James Palmer, of Hayes, Middlesex, that the misguided youth married her in spite of the paternal prohibition. But the young wife did not break off her connection with her former lover, and not long after her marriage, she writes to Chesterfield, in a most affectionate manner, speaking of her recovery from the small-pox, and alluding to “Mounseer’s” (Mr. Palmer) jealousy, and how “he is resolved never to bring me to towne again.” Lord Chesterfield, in consequence of killing a young man in a duel, was compelled to fly the country, and he took refuge at Paris, at the Court of the Queen Mother (Henrietta Maria), and afterwards joined the English King, at Breda, where he solicited,[223] and received the royal pardon, and returned to England with Charles on his restoration: all the time he was on the continent, keeping up his correspondence with his adored Barbara.

There exists great difference of opinion, as to the date of the first meeting between the King, and Mistress Palmer, but there seems little doubt that the favourite’s reign began on Charles’s eventful day, the 29th of May, 1660. Mr. Palmer, now a member of Parliament, had a house in King Street, Westminster, close to the Palace, as also to the lodgings of the Earl of Sandwich, whose housekeeper, “Sarah,” supplied his lordship’s cousin, and daily visitor, Mr. Pepys, with abundant gossip. The far-famed diary abounds in anecdotes of Barbara, praises of her beauty, alternating with blame of her conduct, but every word shewing the fascination she exercised over the writer. The Earl of Anglesey died in 1660-61: and about the same time a daughter was born to Mistress Palmer, which was the occasion of much scandal. [Roger Palmer was now raised to the title of Earl of Castlemaine, and Baron Limerick]. In 1662 Charles II. married Catherine of Braganza, but[224] “Sarah” informed Pepys, that the King supped every night in the week preceding his nuptials, with Lady Castlemaine: “Likewise, when the whole street was aglow with bonfires, the night of the Queen’s arrival, there was no fire at my lady’s door.” On the birth of a second child a dreadful altercation took place between the husband, and wife, but the feud was ostensibly a religious one, for Lord Castlemaine, who had lately embraced the Roman Catholic faith, caused the infant to be baptized by a Popish Priest. Madam was furious, and, as usual, victorious in her struggles, and a few days afterwards “Charles” was re-baptized by a Protestant Minister, in the presence of his godfathers, the King, Lord Oxford, &c. Shortly after this event, Lady Castlemaine left her lord, carrying with her all her plate, and valuables. “They say,” writes Pepys, “that his Lordship is gone to France, to enter a Monastery.”

On the appointment of the Ladies of the Bedchamber to the Queen, Lady Sandwich was justified in her fear, “that the King would still keep in, with Lady Castlemaine.” A great commotion occurred, in the old Palace of[225] Hampton Court. The Queen had never mentioned the favourite’s name; therefore Charles hoped she was ignorant of her rival’s existence; but when the list of the proposed Ladies of the Bedchamber, was submitted to her Majesty, Catherine deliberately pricked out the name of my Lady Castlemaine, which much disturbed her husband. By the King’s command, Lord Clarendon, sorely against his inclination, waited on Her Majesty, to try and induce her to cancel her refusal, but the Queen “was much discontented with her husband,” and declared that rather than submit to the insult, she would desire to return to her own country. Lady Castlemaine through an artifice however, approached her Royal mistress, and kissed her hand; who, on discovering the trick, fell into a swoon, and was carried from the apartment. The King was furious; the Queen for a while appeared inflexible, but Charles gained his point in the end, for after some time had elapsed, Barbara’s appointment was confirmed, and from that time forth, the Queen, by some strange persuasion, or obedience to the King’s orders, treated her rival with familiarity, and confidence;[226] “was,” says Pepys, “merry with her in public, and in private used nobody more friendly.” But then, according to the same authority, “the Queen is a most good lady, and takes all, with the greatest meekness that may be.”

The syren seems indeed to have bewitched every one, Dryden himself did not disdain to write a poem in her honour. On one occasion the Countess had a violent altercation, with “la belle Stewart,” Maid of Honour, who had excited her jealousy, and the King, taking part against her, the imperious lady walked off to her uncle’s at Richmond, whither Charles soon followed her, on pretence of hunting, but really to ask pardon. Not long after, however, Pepys saw her on horseback, with the King, the Queen, Mistress Stewart, etc.; but he thought the King looked coldly on her, “and when she had to ’light, nobody pressed to take her down, but her own gentleman, and she looked, though handsome, mighty out of humour, and had a yellow plume in her hat.” A report reached the Queen’s ears, that Barbara had turned Papist, but though a zealot in her religion, Catherine “did not much like it, as she did not believe[227] it was done for conscience sake.” Perhaps her Majesty agreed, with the learned Divine who said that “if the Church of Rome had got no more by Lady Castlemaine, than the Church of England had lost, the matter was not much.”

A curious, and unpleasant adventure befell Lady Castlemaine, in the Park, returning from a visit to the Duchess of York at St. James’s Palace, attended only by her maid, and a little page. She was accosted by three gentlemen in masks, who upbraided her in the strongest language, and reminded her that the mistress of Edward IV. had died of starvation, on a dunghill, abandoned by all the world. The infuriated and terrified beauty no sooner reached home, than she swooned; the King ran to the rescue, ordered the gates of the Park to be shut, but it was too late—several arrests were made, but no discovery ensued.

In the year of the Plague, the Court being at Oxford, Lady Castlemaine gave birth to a son, at Merton College. The lady and the King had high words on the occasion of the Duke of Buckingham being sent to the Tower, she speaking up boldly, in his behalf, Charles[228] saying she was a jade that meddled in matters she had nothing to do with; she retorting that he was “a fool to suffer his business to be carried on by fools,” and so forth. But before five days had elapsed the Duke was at liberty. Lady Castlemaine was a determined enemy to Chancellor Clarendon, and she had declared in the Queen’s chamber, she hoped to see his head upon a stake to keep company with those of the Regicides, and there is no doubt she was instrumental in procuring the downfall of the King’s “faithful and able adviser.” Gambling was another vice in which Barbara indulged, and Pepys tells us she won £15,000, one night, and lost £25,000 another. But her favour was on the wane: she was libelled, and abused, and the King was weary of her, and it was reported that he had given her large sums of money and a fine house, (the residence of the Earls of Berkshire, on the south-west corner of St. James’s Street,) merely to get rid of her. Yet she still ruled him in many points, and she made great friends with the Duke and Duchess of York, while one of her violent hatreds was against the Duke of Ormond, Lord Lieutenant[229] of Ireland, because he would not confirm the grant of Phœnix Park, a house near Dublin, which the King had promised her. Meeting him in one of the royal apartments, she fell upon him with a torrent of abuse, and ended by expressing a hope that she might live to see him hanged. His Grace replied with calm dignity, “he was in no haste to shorten her days; all he wished was to live, to see her old.”

In 1670, Barbara, Countess of Castlemaine, was created Baroness Nonsuch, Countess of Southampton, and Duchess of Cleveland, in the Peerage of England, with the Palace and Park of Nonsuch, in Surrey, and an enormous increase of income: so that as far as pecuniary advantages went, the King was still sufficiently under her spell, to comply with her exorbitant demands. John Churchill, (afterwards the great Duke of Marlborough,) when a Court Page attracted the attention of Barbara. She lavished gifts upon him, procured him the post of Groom of the Bedchamber to the Duke of York, and obtained his promotion in the army. But in later years when her beauty had passed away, and her favour at Court, the man who had[230] risen by her influence, refused to speak a word in her behalf, respecting the renewal of her ill-paid pension. The last grant made to the Duchess of Cleveland, and to the Earl of Northumberland, for their lives, was the Rangership of the honour, and manor of Hampton Court; but the lodge in Bushy Park was not habitable. It was about this time, that Barbara went to France, her name appearing as a liberal patroness to the Convent of the Blue Nuns, in the Faubourg St. Antoine (where she had placed her daughter Barbara), and other religious houses.

In 1678 occurred the episode, with the English Ambassador, to which we have alluded in the notice of the Duke of Montagu, when Barbara on her return from London, found that her own daughter, the Countess of Sussex, had supplanted her, in the favour of that fickle nobleman. In 1694, she was living in Arlington Street, Piccadilly, and received as a companion a certain Madame De la Rivière, one of the daughters and co-heiresses of Sir Roger Manley, Bart., a woman of no reputation, save as the authoress of some inferior literary productions;[231] who after a stormy friendship, repaid her patroness’s hospitality by contriving a clandestine marriage for her eldest son, the Duke of Southampton, with the daughter of Sir William Pulteney, a match very much disapproved by his mother.

Lord Castlemaine died in 1705. After his separation from his wife, as far back as 1662, his life was eventful; he travelled far, fought at Solebay, was twice sent to the Tower, went as Ambassador to Rome, was the author of several political pamphlets, and in fact “meddled a little in everything around.” Four months after his death, his widow married the celebrated “Beau” Feilding, the widower of two heiresses, viz., the only daughter of Lord Carlingford, and the only daughter of the Marquis of Clanricarde, widow of Viscount Muskerry, and of Robert Villiers, Viscount Purbeck. Both ladies died without children, and the Beau at the time of his marriage with Duchess Barbara, was a man of desperate fortune, and character. He ill-treated his wife, who was most generous to him, and would have divested her of all her property, had not her[232] sons stood by her. Fortunately, for her Grace, it was discovered that the Beau had already, but a few days before his marriage with her, espoused a certain Mary Wadsworth, who had been palmed off upon his credulity, as a widow of enormous wealth. He was tried, and found guilty of bigamy, Barbara being in court during the trial, and the marriage was pronounced null, and void.

She passed the remainder of her life at Chiswick, where she died of dropsy in the sixty-ninth year of her age, 1709. She left a considerate will, and gave strict orders concerning her funeral, desiring to be buried at the parish church. Her pall was borne by six Peers of the realm. Barbara’s three sons were the Duke of Cleveland and Southampton, the Duke of Grafton, and the Duke of Northumberland; the first and last titles became extinct. Her daughters were the Countess of Sussex, the Countess of Lichfield, “a blameless beauty,” and Lady Barbara Fitzroy, (disowned by the King, and supposed to be the daughter of John Churchill, afterwards Duke of Marlborough), who took the veil, and died as Prioress of a[233] convent in France. Bishop Burnet, in speaking of Barbara, Duchess of Cleveland, says: “She was a woman of great beauty, vicious, ravenous, foolish, and imperious.” Another contemporary says: “She was a great contradiction, unboundedly lavish, yet sordidly covetous.”

Portrait galleries teem with likenesses of Barbara, at different ages, in different costumes, and “moods.” In the celebrated “Bellona” of the Hampton Court Beauties we detect the “arrogant virago” who carried all before her: but in the portrait in question, her beauty is far more captivating from the pensive and languid expression, which softens her brilliant eyes, and smooths the corners of her finely cut but usually severe lips. No wonder, Lord Sandwich was delighted with his present. Pepys does not specify the donor, whether the lady, or the artist; but he says: “My Lady Sandwich showed me, and Mistress Pepys, Lady Castlemaine’s picture, at the new house in Lincoln’s Inn Fields, finely done, and given my Lord;” and in another page, he calls it “that most blessed picture.”


[234]

General Ireton:

By DOBSON.

Three-quarter Length.

(Long Hair. Red Doublet. A Cuirass and Sash. Buff Gloves. Right Hand holding the Sash. Left on his Hip.)

Born, 1611. Died, 1651. Son of Gervase Ireton, Esq., of Attenborough, Co. Notts. Was a gentleman-commoner, at Trinity College, Oxford. Destined for the bar; but the Civil War breaking out, he obtained a commission in the Parliamentary Army. In 1645 he married at Norton, near Oxford, Bridget, the eldest daughter of Oliver Cromwell, by whom he had one son, and four daughters. In 1649 he was appointed one of the King’s judges, and signed the warrant for his execution. He was a man of undoubted courage, and distinguished himself in numerous engagements, more especially at the battle of Naseby. His views were violently republican, but his integrity stern and uncompromising;[235] no mercenary motives influenced him. Eleven years the junior of Cromwell, and his son-in-law, he dared to differ with him, and to expostulate boldly when he disapproved of the Protector’s conduct. After the battle of Worcester he was offered pecuniary remuneration, with several other members of the Parliamentary Army, but he was disinterested enough to refuse £20,000, and to tell the government roundly, he should be more content to see them paying off the debts they had incurred, than thus disposing of the public money. It was thought that his appointment as Lord Deputy in Ireland, was intended by the Protector to remove him from all possibility of interference with his own proceedings; and there seems little doubt that Ireton, shortly before his death, had contemplated crossing the Channel to speak face to face with his father-in-law, in reference to many measures he disapproved. But he was suddenly seized, and carried off by the Plague, during the siege of Limerick in 1651.

Ireton was held in great esteem by his party and his comrades, and it was said of him that[236] he grafted the soldier on the lawyer, and the statesman on the saint. Cromwell was much affected at his death, and caused the body to be brought over, and deposited with great pomp in Westminster Abbey, in Henry VII.’s Chapel. At the Restoration however, the body was dug up, and hung upon a gibbet at Tyburn.


Oliver Cromwell, Lord Protector of England:

By WALKER.

Half-Length: Oval.

(In Armour, with a Plain Falling Collar.)

Born, 1599. Died, 1658—The only surviving son of Robert Cromwell, by Elizabeth Stewart: born in Huntingdon, named after his uncle, Sir Oliver Cromwell, of Hinchingbrook, where he passed many of his earlier days. Numerous stories are told, (some ridiculed, some generally believed,) of Oliver’s infancy, and[237] boyhood. It is said that on one occasion he was snatched from his cradle by a monkey, who jumping out of the window, scampered over the roof of Hinchingbrook, to the consternation of the family, who stood watching the beast, with great anxiety. Whether or not the monkey felt, that he bore in his arms the future ruler of England, the chronicler does not affirm, but he goes on to relate, that the fears of the relatives were soon appeased by seeing the baby safely restored to his cradle, by the conscientious ape! Another incident connected with Hinchingbrook was more currently believed, viz., that Charles I., when a boy, visited Sir Oliver, on his road from Scotland to London. The good knight sent for his nephew to help him entertain the Prince, which he did by disputing violently with his Royal Highness: a quarrel ensued, and Oliver, being the strongest of the two, caused Charles’s blood to flow, an ominous presage of after times. We do not know how Sir Oliver visited his nephew’s outbreak, but he was a staunch cavalier, and supported the Royalists till his death.

Oliver, when a school-boy, was wilful, and[238] wayward, and fond of wild and sometimes coarse jests. One Christmas night, the revels at Hinchingbrook were interrupted by some unseemly pranks of his conceiving, which called down upon him, a sentence from the Master of Misrule that Sir Oliver ordered into immediate execution, viz., that the young recreant should be subjected then, and there, to a severe ducking in one of the adjoining fishponds. When still a school-boy, another anecdote is told of Oliver; that on awaking from a short sleep, one hot day, he electrified his schoolfellows with the description of a dream, he had had. How a woman of gigantic stature had appeared at the side of his bed, and slowly undrawing the curtains, had announced to him that some day, he would be the greatest man in England—the word “King” did not however pass her lips. The young visionary was rewarded for this lie, (as it was considered) by a severe flogging. A better authenticated story is told of his rescue from drowning, by one Johnson, a citizen of Huntingdon, of whom General Cromwell enquired (when in after years, he marched through his native town, with the army) if he[239] remembered the circumstance: “Yes,” was the indignant reply, “and I wish to my heart I had let you drown, rather than to see you in arms, against your King.”

At the age of seventeen, Oliver Cromwell left the Grammar School, at Huntingdon, and entered Sidney Sussex College, Cambridge. Both as a school-boy and a collegian he distinguished himself more in athletic sports, than in application to study, and he appears to have led a wild irregular life, according to his own admission, for it is difficult to sift the truth, from the preposterous flattery on the one hand, and the unqualified abuse on the other, which characterise Cromwell’s biographers, according to their political opinions. In recording his own conversion, at the age of twenty years, he says: “Before which time, I hated holiness, and the Word of God.” His mother sent him to study at Lincoln’s Inn, “where,” says Carrington, “he associated with those of the best rank, and quality, and the most ingenious persons, for though not averse to study and contemplation, he seemed rather addicted to conversation, and the reading of men’s characters, than to a continual[240] poring over authors.” On completing his twenty-first year, he married Elizabeth, daughter of Sir James Bourchier, of Felsted, in Essex, a kinswoman of Hampden’s, who brought him a modest dowry, which she nobly relinquished with the additional money he had settled on her for life, to rescue her husband from pecuniary difficulties in after years; a woman of irreproachable life, and unobtrusive manners, who tolerated rather than coveted grandeur, and distinction, an excellent housewife, and a loving help-mate. The newly married pair fixed their residence in Huntingdon, where his mother still lived, and where several children were born to them.

Cromwell now turned his mind to those studies, and pursuits which paved his way to future greatness. He made his house the refuge for the “disaffected,” or the “persecuted” Nonconformist Ministers; he encouraged them in their opposition, prayed, preached, built a chapel for them, supported them on all occasions, and became so popular, that the chief of his fellow townsmen offered to return him for the Borough, in the next Parliament that was summoned. In[241] 1625 he failed—in 1628 he was returned as member for Huntingdon, when his cousin Hampden also took his seat. Dr. South describes Oliver’s appearance on this occasion, in a manner that caused the Merry Monarch to observe: “Oddsfish! that chaplain must be a Bishop; put me in mind of him, next vacancy.” “Who that beheld such a bankrupt, beggarly fellow, as Cromwell, first entering the Parliament House, with a torn, thread-bare coat, and greasy hat (perhaps neither of them paid for) would have believed that in a few years.” … &c.?

After the dissolution of this Parliament, where Hampden, Cromwell, and Pym bore bold testimony to their political, and religious faith, Oliver returned to Huntingdon, and afterwards flitted to a small farm, near St. Ives, with his wife and family. Hume says the long morning and afternoon prayers he made, consumed his own time, and that of his ploughmen, and he had little leisure for temporal affairs. A property in, and near Ely, left him by his maternal uncle, determined him to settle in that city, in 1636. In 1640 he was returned for Cambridge, by the majority of a single vote. From this moment[242] the history of Cromwell is the history of England, and his acts and all that he did, are written in the chronicles of Clarendon, Hume, and other historians, whose name is Legion. From that time, whether in Parliament, or the field, he was in arms against the King, whose execution took place on the 30th of January, 1649. But the inscription over the bed on which the Protector lay in state, will assist the memory as to dates.

Oliver Cromwell, Lord Protector, etc., born at Huntingdon, was educated in Cambridge, afterwards at Lincoln’s Inn. At the beginning of the wars, captain of a troop of horse raised at his own charge. By the Parliament made Commander-in-Chief, he reduced Ireland and South Wales, overthrew Duke Hamilton’s army, and the Kirk’s at Dunbar, reduced all Scotland, and defeated Charles Stuart’s army, at Worcester. He was proclaimed Protector in 1654, and while refusing the title of King, sate on a Chair of State, the only one covered, in that vast assembly, and drove back to his Palace at Whitehall, with more than regal pomp. Thither, keeping up great state, he removed his[243] aged mother, whose remaining days were embittered by alarm, for her son’s safety, his favourite daughter, Mrs. Claypole, from whom he would scarcely ever separate, the gentle and handsome likeness of himself, Mary, etc.

Hard, cruel, and uncompromising in public life, Oliver was tender, and loving in his domestic relations. He lost two sons, Robert, who died in childhood, Oliver, who fell in battle, a great favourite with his father, who in his last moments alluded to the young soldier’s death, “which went as a dagger to my heart, indeed it did.” His other children were, Richard, his successor for a short time only; Henry, Lord Deputy of Ireland; Bridget, married first, to General Ireton, and secondly, to Lieutenant-General Fleetwood; Elizabeth, married to Mr. Claypole, his favourite daughter, whose death was supposed to have hastened her father’s; Mary married to Viscount Fauconberg; and Frances married to the Hon. Robert Rich.

It is almost too well known, to be worthy of writing down, how Cromwell’s last days were embittered by suspicion, and distrust of all[244] around him, and constant fear of assassination. He died, however, after fourteen days sickness, of ague, “peaceably in his bed,” on his “fortunate day,” September the Third, the anniversary of the victories of Worcester, and Dunbar, in a storm so tremendous, and so universal, that it reached the coasts of the Mediterranean. The funeral was conducted with more than regal pomp, and splendour, but on the accession of Charles II., the Protector’s body was dug up, and hung upon the “Traitor’s Tree.”


General Monk:

By WALKER.

Half-Length: Oval.

(In Armour. Long Hair. White Cravat, tied with large Bow, and Black Ribbon.)

Born, 1608. Died, 1670. A younger son of Thomas Monk, of Potheridge, Devon. When only seventeen, in consequence of a domestic[245] quarrel, where (says the Biographie Universelle) “par excès d’amour filial, il maltraita le sous-sheriff d’Exeter,” he went to sea, and afterwards served under the Duke of Buckingham. In 1629, he entered one of the English regiments in Holland, where he studied the art of war, with great diligence, and was remarkable for his steadiness, and for the discipline, he maintained among the soldiers, treating them at the same time with great kindness. In 1639, he returned to England. When Charles I., was embarked in that unfortunate war with Scotland, which was the forerunner of terrible disasters, Monk, as Lieutenant-Colonel of artillery, displayed much skill, and courage, though both proved useless; and he then went to Ireland on promotion. Here he did considerable service, was made Governor of Dublin, but Parliament intervening, he was superseded in the office, and on the conclusion of a truce (by the King’s commands) with the Irish rebels, he returned to England. On his arrival he found that doubts of his fidelity had been instilled into Charles’s mind; but joining that monarch at Oxford, he soon dispelled them, was[246] promoted to the rank of Major-General, and sent to relieve Sandwich, where he was taken prisoner, and thence committed to the Tower by the Roundheads.

His captivity lasted two years, during which time he rejected all overtures, made him by the Protector, and occupied his leisure hours in noting down his observations on military, and political subjects. Cromwell entertained a high opinion of Monk as a soldier, and he offered him the alternative of prolonged imprisonment, or a command in the Parliamentary army, to march against O’Neill, the Irish rebel. Monk accepted the latter, and behaved in this expedition with his usual courage, and determination; but he was ill-supported by the Government at home, who, as we are told, “had too many irons in the fire,” to attend to the Irish war. He was reluctantly compelled to sign a treaty with O’Neill, for which proceeding he was called to account, on his return to England. But the Protector considered his services necessary, and despatched him in command to Scotland, where he again saw much service. Yet in Oliver’s mind there[247] lurked suspicions of Monk’s fidelity; and not long before his death, he wrote to the General saying: “There be that tell me, there is a certain cunning fellow in Scotland, called George Monk, who is said to lie in wait there, to introduce Charles Stuart; I pray you use your diligence to apprehend him, and send him up to me.”

Monk’s proceedings from this time, form part of history, and the share he took in the restoration of Charles II., is too well known to be repeated here. Charles called him his father, invested him with the Order of the Garter, created him Duke of Albemarle, Earl of Torrington, and Baron Monk, and appointed him Lieutenant-General of the Forces of the United Kingdom, with a large income.

In 1653, he married (or acknowledged his marriage with) Anne, daughter of John Clargis, who had long resided under his roof: “A lady,” says Guizot, “whose manners were more vulgar, and less simple, than those of her husband, and who was the laughing-stock, of a witty and satirical court.”

The French historian speaks disparagingly of[248] the great general, but in the time of the Plague, when the court, and ministers left London, the Duke remained to watch over the necessities of the wretched inhabitants, to save families from pillage, and to alleviate the sufferings of the poor.

He was afloat in joint command of the fleet with Prince Rupert, when the Great Fire occurred, and the general cry was: “Ah, if old George had been here, this would not have happened.” He died in his sixty-second year, leaving an enormous fortune to his spendthrift son Christopher, (who died without children), and was buried in Westminster Abbey with great splendour, Charles II. attending his obsequies.

Guizot says: “C’étoit un homme capable de grandes choses, quoiqu’il n’eût pas de grandeur dans l’âme.” His jealousy of his noble colleague Lord Sandwich, bears out the French historian’s Opinion, in some measure.

In his last illness, he was much occupied with arranging the alliance of his surviving son, Christopher, (the death of the elder had been a terrible blow to him) with the heiress of the wealthy Duke of Newcastle. The nuptials[249] were celebrated in his own chamber, and a few days afterwards, George Monk, Duke of Albemarle, expired in his arm-chair, without a groan.


Charles II., King of England:

By SIR PETER LELY.

Full-Length.

(Standing by a Table, on which are his Helmet and Staff.)

Born, 1630. Died, 1685.—He was the second surviving son of Charles I., by Henrietta Maria of France, born at St. James’s Palace, on the 29th of May. When only twelve years old was appointed to the command of a troop of horse, his father’s Body Guard at York, and sent with the title of General, to serve in the Royal army when fifteen. After the defeat of Naseby, he went to Scilly, then to Jersey, and in 1646 joined his mother, at Paris. He was at the Hague, when the news of his father’s death reached him, and he immediately assumed the[250] title of King. In 1649, he was proclaimed King at Edinburgh. He left Holland, returned to Paris, and thence again to Jersey, where he received a deputation from Scotland, and accepted the Crown offered him by the Presbyterians, under such humiliating conditions, as disgusted him with that sect, for the rest of his life. In 1650, he arrived in Scotland, being compelled to take the Covenant before he landed; was crowned at Scone on New Year’s Day, 1651; but marched south, on hearing of the advance of Cromwell, and was proclaimed King at Carlisle. Defeated by Cromwell, at the Battle of Worcester, Charles had a narrow escape, with all the well known incidents of the hiding place in Boscobel Oak, etc. He embarked from Shoreham for Normandy, thence to Paris, Bruges, Brussels. In the latter city he heard of the Protector’s death; then, when at Calais and Breda, he kept up constant communication, not only with General Monk, and his own acknowledged partisans, but he also sent addresses to both Houses of Parliament. On the 1st, of May 1660, they voted his restoration; on the 8th, he was proclaimed in London;[251] on the 23rd, he embarked from the Hague; and on the 29th, his thirtieth birthday, he made his public entry into London, amidst the enthusiastic acclamations of the people. In 1662, he married Catherine of Braganza, daughter of John IV., King of Portugal, and died at Whitehall, in the twenty-fifth year of his reign. Some say he confessed himself a Roman Catholic; some that he was a victim to poison. It was his brother’s wish to prove the former statement, and several of his contemporaries, including the Duke of Buckingham, believed the latter. The last named nobleman gives apparently an impartial character of the “Merry Monarch,” who was remarkable for contradictions, and inconsistencies, even above the average, in an inconsistent world. Buckingham says: “His very countenance set all rules of physiognomy at defiance, for being of a cheerful and compassionate disposition, his expression was melancholy, and repelling. He had a wonderful facility in comprehending trifles, but had too little application to master great matters. Generous, extravagant, lavish in the extreme, he had a reluctance to[252] part with small sums, and it was often remarked that he grudged losing five pounds at tennis to the very people on whom at other times he would bestow five thousand. Gentle and yielding in trifles, he was inflexible in important matters. Profligate in the extreme, weak and capricious, he was,” says the same witness, “a civil and obliging husband, a kind master, an indulgent father, and an affectionate [and he might have added, forbearing] brother. Hating the formalities of royalty, he was ready to assert his dignity, when it was necessary to do so. So agreeably did he tell a story, that his hearers never cavilled at its repetition, not through civility, but from the desire to hear it again, as is the case with a clever comedy.”

So far the Duke of Buckingham. We know what his boon companion Rochester, wrote of him, in a provisional epitaph; perhaps one of the only sallies proceeding from his favourite, that “Old Rowley” did not relish:

“Here lies our Sovereign lord the King,
Whose word no man relies on:
Who never said a foolish thing,
And never did a wise one.”

[253]

Also Andrew Marvell’s satire:

“Of stature tall and sable hue,
Much like the son of Kish, that lofty Jew;
Ten years of need, he lingered in exile,
And fed his father’s asses, all the while.”

Charles II., King of Spain:

Aged Four Years.

By SEBASTIAN HERRERA.

Full-Length.

(Long flowing Light Hair. Red Coat, trimmed with Silver. Lace Ruffles. Holding a Truncheon in one Hand, and his Hat in the other. Above him an Eagle, with extended Wings, bearing a Sword. An Angel hovering over the King, holding the Spanish Crown.)

Born, 1661. Died, 1700. Eldest surviving son of Philip IV., by Mariana, of Austria. Succeeded his father, when four years of age. His first wife was Marie Louise, daughter of Philip, Duke of Orleans, by Henrietta Maria of England. Transplanted from the brilliant Court[254] of France, to the stiff formality of Spain, and the Spaniards, at a time when the jealousy of France was so great, that the Mistress of the Robes was said to have wrung her parrots’ necks for speaking French, Marie Louise, the wife of a half idiot King, bore herself wisely and bravely, and during the few short years of her reign, gained an influence for good, over her husband, who loved her dearly. But the mirror which broke to pieces in her fair hands, on the day of her arrival in Madrid, was but too true an omen. She died in the 27th year of her age, a victim to poison (as her mother had been before her), supposed to have been administered by the beautiful and infamous Olympia Mancini—at least this was the general belief. Her husband lamented her deeply; yet he re-married the next year, Anna Maria, daughter of Philip, Count Palatine, of Neuburg, a good-humoured, amiable Princess; but Charles remained indifferent to her, and so faithful was he to the memory of his first wife, that one of his last acts was to cause the tomb in which she was interred to be opened, while he hung in speechless sorrow, over the embalmed remains of the once beautiful Marie Louise;[255] and when he looked upon her still comely features, he exclaimed, with tears, “I shall meet her soon in Heaven.”

“Charles II., of Spain,” says Sir William Stirling, “might well be called the Melancholy Monarch in contradistinction to his uncle Charles II., of England, the Merry Monarch.” In the early years of his reign, he was in entire subjugation to the Regent-Mother, who at open variance with Don John, and his party, only agreed with him in this, to keep the young monarch under. True it is, the unhappy Prince was ill-suited to his position. From his earliest years, he was a martyr to despondency, and detested everything connected with public affairs. His gun, his dogs, and his beads, were his favourite companions. He had a zealous love for art, and artists, but little taste, or knowledge, patronising, and befriending alike the worthy, and the worthless. His paramount favourite, was Luca Giordano, to whose studio he paid frequent visits, and whom he commanded to remain covered in his presence: a mandate which that self-approving artist, readily obeyed—a contrast to the conduct of the[256] distinguished Carreno, to whom the young King was one day sitting for his portrait, in the presence of the Queen-Mother. Charles enquired to what order the artist belonged. “To none,” was the reply, “except that of your Majesty’s servants.” The Badge of Santiago, was sent to Carreno that very day, but so great was his diffidence, that he never assumed it. “His portraits of Charles II.,” says Stirling, “as a child, have something to please the eye in the pale pensive features, and long fair hair; the projection of the lower jaw, so remarkable in after life, is scarcely discernible, and there is something pitiful, and touching in the sadness of the countenance, contrasted with the gala suit he wears.” Herrera died soon after Charles’s accession, but besides Giordano he retained in his service Coello, and Muñoz, and invited Murillo, to remove from Seville, to Madrid.

He had a magnificent carriage, for himself and his second wife, painted with mythological subjects: he amused himself by building, visiting from one studio to another, and shooting wolves; while occasionally he might be seen,[257] walking barefoot in the procession at an Auto da Fé. Charles II., without doubt stood on the verge of imbecility, or insanity, and the treatment he endured from those around him, on his death-bed, was sufficient to deaden the small share of intellect that was his portion. In his last days he was tormented, and harassed by questions as to the succession, (he being childless): and in his dying moments, he was tortured by the frightful ceremony of exorcism, it being currently supposed, or at least affirmed by the superstitious, and cruel, that he was possessed.

“Thus,” says Stirling, “died one of the most unfortunate monarchs, ever cursed by a hereditary crown.”


In the Entrance Hall are Portraits of Kings George II. and George III., by Shackleton and Ramsay, of John, fourth Earl of Sandwich, and of several British Admirals, by Dance.

[258]


[259]

LORD SANDWICH’S ROOM.


[260]

Omai, the Otaheitan.

An Engraving.

He played such a prominent part in the entertainments at Hinchingbrook, and had such a curious life of adventure, that a brief notice will scarcely be misplaced. His father was a man of considerable property in Whetea, one of the South Pacific Islands, which had been conquered by a neighbour, and he took refuge in Huaheine, where he died, leaving Omai, and several other children, in a state of poverty, and dependence. Captain Cook tells us, that Captain Furneaux, visiting these islands, becoming interested in Omai, conveyed him to England, where he became a resident under Lord Sandwich’s roof, (John, fourth Earl, then First Lord of the Admiralty.) Captain Cook and Mr. Cradock give the same character of the half savage, “intelligent, indolent, childlike, full of affection, and gratitude to his noble[261] patron, but cherishing a feeling of revenge towards those of his own countrymen, who had ill-treated his father, and reduced himself to poverty. Lord Sandwich took him about to music meetings, races, etc.” “At Leicester,” says Mr. Cradock, “he divided public attention, with the Earl of Sandwich when that nobleman played on the kettledrum, his favourite instrument at the music meetings. ‘What has become of poor Omai?’ was the question once asked on some festive occasion. ‘Oh,’ was the answer, ‘I have just left him in the tea room, very happy, gallantly handing about bread and butter, to the ladies.’” Omai was not averse to admiration, and adapted himself curiously to his new life, showing such an aptitude for dancing, among other things, that a lady assured me with a little tuition he would make an excellent partner. On one occasion Lord Sandwich proposed that he should dress a shoulder of mutton, after the fashion of his country, and he proceeded accordingly to dig a hole in the lawn at Hinchingbrook, placed fuel covered with clean pebbles at the bottom, then laid the mutton neatly enveloped in[262] leaves at the top, and having closed the hole walked constantly round it, observing the sun. The joint was then served at table, and much commended. Having been offered some stewed morella cherries, he jumped up, and assured the society he no more wished to partake of human blood, than they did. One summer’s day he entered the breakfast room at Hinchingbrook, in great pain, his hand much swollen, not being acquainted with the word “wasp,” he made Dr. Solander, who was present, understand he had been wounded by a “soldier bird,” upon which the doctor remarked: “No naturalist could have better described the obnoxious insect.” “He was,” says Cradock, “naturally genteel, and prepossessing, and fond of good clothes, once finding fault with those prepared for him, as being inferior to the quality of the dress, of the same cut the gentleman who sat beside him wore—this was of Genoese, and Omai’s of English velvet.” So far had he advanced in civilization. The government judged it best, he should return to his own country, lest the natives should suspect us of having made away with him.[263] Mr. Cradock says he bade him good-bye on the steps of the Admiralty, when the poor fellow was deeply affected. Captain Cook says his feelings were mingled: “When he talked on the voyage, about England, and his friends, and protectors there, he was much moved, and could scarcely refrain from tears, so full of gratitude was his heart—but when we spoke of his return to his country, his eyes sparkled in the expectation of the reception he should meet with, on account of his superior knowledge, and still more on account of the treasures, with which he was laden.” The King, Lord Sandwich, Mr. Bankes (afterwards Sir Joseph), and many other friends, had furnished him with every article, which the sailors’ knowledge of the country, made them believe would be acceptable there. In fact, every means had been taken during his abode in England, as also at his departure, to make him the instrument of conveying to the Islands of the Pacific Ocean, an exalted opinion of England’s greatness, and generosity. Omai, as may have been conjectured, was very useful to Captain Cook on the voyage out, serving as[264] interpreter, and mediator, on many occasions, at the Friendly Islands, and elsewhere. On their arrival at Otaheite, several canoes came off, but Omai took no notice of the crews or they of him, neither did they appear to recognise him, as a countryman. At length Ootee, a chief, brother-in-law to Omai, and three or four others, who all knew him before he went to England, came on board. But their meeting was in no wise tender—on the contrary, great indifference was manifested on both sides, till Omai, taking Ootee down into the cabin, displayed his treasures of trinkets etc., but more especially some red feathers, of a few of which, he begged his relative’s acceptance. When this was known on deck, the whole state of affairs was changed, and Ootee, who would scarcely speak to Omai before, now begged they might be Tayos (friends) and exchange names—an honour Omai accepted with dignity, and Ootee, in return for the valuable feathers, sent on shore for a hog. Such were the civilities that passed, on our friend’s return, and it was evident that all the affection was for his property, and not his person. When present at some of the barbarous customs, prevalent[265] in these Islands, Omai, by desire of Captain Cook, expostulated with the chiefs on their cruelty with so much spirit, as to incur their displeasure. The gallant commander gives an elaborate account of the dainties prepared for him, and some of the ship’s crew, when they dined on shore with the two brothers-in-law. Captain Cook endeavoured to persuade Omai to settle at Otaheite, but his wishes turned to Whetea, his native place, where his father had originally held land. The Captain thought he could get it restored to him, if he would make friends with the conquerors, but Omai was a staunch patriot, and refused, begging that he might be reinstated through the intervention of the English arms. No way likely, said Captain Cook, who, however, willing to serve him, sought an interview with the chief men of the Island, to induce them to permit Omai to reside at Huaheine. A grand function took place, when Omai made his offering to the gods, of red feathers, and fine cloth from England; and a set of prayers dictated by himself, was pronounced, in which his English friends were duly remembered, Lord Sandwich[266] and Tootee (Cook) in particular. He also told them of his kind reception in England by the King and his Earees, (nobles), that he had returned enriched with all sorts of treasures, that would be useful to his countrymen, etc., and that it was Captain Cook’s wish that they should give him a piece of land to build a house, etc.; and that if they would not do so——here followed some threats, which the Englishman had to disavow, and the chiefs were so much edified by the gallant sailor’s speech, that one of them assured him, the whole Island was his own, and therefore he could give what portion he pleased, to his friend. The result of all this was, that land was granted, and the ships’ carpenters built Omai a house, and laid out, and planted his small garden. He found several relatives at Huaheine, “who did not indeed rob him,” says Captain Cook, “but I fear they are scarcely of sufficient influence, to protect him from others.” The kind Englishman was under great apprehension, at the danger Omai incurred from being the only rich man in the Island, and he took every precaution he could think of, to ensure his safety, declaring that he would soon revisit the Island, and if[267] any one had proved an enemy to Omai, he might dread the wrath of the British commander. All the English treasures were carried on shore, as soon as Omai’s house had progressed sufficiently—pots, kettles, dishes, plates, and better still, a box of toys and of fireworks—the latter an object of pleasure, and fear to the inhabitants. But most of the English utensils were useless to him here, and he wisely disposed of them, for hatchets, or other tools.

Before he sailed, Captain Cook saw Omai settled in his own house, with an establishment consisting of his brother, and eight or nine other men, (no female—Omai was too volatile to choose a wife), and there the English officers were received with hospitality and excellent cheer. Cook made the new householder, a present of several fire-arms, which he coveted, and had the following inscription cut on the house:

“Georgius Tertius, Rex;
2 Novembris, 1777.
Names { Resolution, Jac. Cook, Pr.
{ Discovery, Car. Clerke, Pr.”

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At four in the afternoon, of the 2nd of November, the two English vessels sailed. “Many of the Natives remained on board, to hear five guns fired, and then took their leave, but Omai lingered, till we were at sea, and then returned in a boat, sent to recover a hawser that had been broken. He took leave of his English friends, and showed a moody resolution till he approached Captain Cook, to bid him farewell. Then his tears could no longer be suppressed, and he wept the whole time the boat was going ashore.” Captain Cook heard from him when the ships were at Whetea; he sent two men in a canoe to say, that he was prospering and at peace, and that his only misfortune consisted in the loss of a goat, who had died in kidding.

One would gladly have heard something of the latter days of Omai, and can only hope that his state of semi-civilization did not make him discontented, with his life in Otaheite, or obnoxious to its inhabitants. If, as is most probable, the terrible details of his benefactor’s murder ever reached him, the grateful heart of Omai must have been wrung with sorrow.


[269]

Count Walewski.

Born, 1801. Died, 1868.—He was the son of the Emperor Napoleon I., by a Polish lady of rank. When only nineteen he went on a diplomatic mission to London, to plead the cause of Poland, having inherited from his mother, an enthusiastic love for her country. Charles Greville says in his Diary, that “his agreeable manners and remarkable beauty made him welcome in society;” and in 1831, he married Lady Caroline Montagu, sister to the Earl of Sandwich. He served for a time, under the Polish flag; was present at the Battle of Grokow, and was decorated with the National Military Cross. He afterwards obtained a commission in a regiment of French Hussars, but before long he laid down the sword to take up the pen. Among his past publications was “Un mot sur la question d’Afrique, et de l’alliance Anglaise.” He became the editor of the Messager, and wrote a five-act comedy, called “L’Ecole du Monde,” which was put on the stage in 1840.

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He resumed his diplomatic career in the same year, and was sent to Egypt under the ministry of Thiers; he also held several appointments under Guizot.

When Louis Napoleon became President, Walewski attached himself to his cause. In 1849, he went as minister to Florence, and Naples, and in 1854, he came as Ambassador to England, but was recalled to Paris, the ensuing year, to take the portfolio of Foreign Affairs, vacant by the resignation of M. Drouyn de l’Huys. In this post his connection with, and knowledge of, England, made him instrumental in cementing the alliance of the two nations. In 1856, he presided as French Plenipotentiary over the Congress of Paris. In 1860, he resigned his post, but was again employed as successor to M. Fould. In 1863, he retired from public life, it was supposed on account of his strong Polish tendencies. He had the Grand Cross of the Legion of Honour, and other decorations.

He married as his second wife the grand-daughter of Stanislaus Poniatowski, nephew to the last King of Poland. To France and its Emperor, he was an irreparable loss.


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William Poyntz, Esquire:

By SIR GEORGE HAYTER.

Born, 1769. Died, 1840. The last male representative of the ancient family of Poyntz. His grandfather, Stephen Poyntz, was in diplomacy, and employed on several foreign missions. He married Anna Maria Mordaunt, cousin of the Earl of Peterborough, and Maid of Honour to Caroline, Queen of George II. To Mr. and Mrs. Poyntz’s care was confided the bringing up, of William, Duke of Cumberland, and a curious picture was painted, according to the taste of the day, in which the Queen presents her son to her ci-devant Maid of Honour, the lady in the garb of Minerva, and the young Prince in the stiff coat and breeches of the period. Mrs. Poyntz’s influence at Court stood her once in good stead, when she pleaded in behalf of Lord Cromartie, under sentence of death in the ’15, in compliance with a touching appeal from his unhappy wife. The[272] letter is now in possession of Mrs. Poyntz’s great grand-daughter, Mary Boyle. Lord Cromartie’s life was spared, though fortune, and title were lost to him. The Queen bestowed as a dowry on Miss Mordaunt, the estate of Midgham, in Berkshire, but the gift is said never to have been paid for, out of the royal purse!

Stephen died in 1750, and was succeeded by his son William, who married a daughter and co-heiress of Kelland Courtenay, Esq., of Painsford, Devon, by Elizabeth Montagu, daughter of Viscount Hinchingbrook. They had issue: William Stephen, the subject of this notice, Montagu Mordaunt, who died early in life, and four daughters; Georgiana, married first to Mr. Fawkner, and afterwards to Lord John Townshend; Louisa, married, as his second wife, to the Hon. George Bridgeman; Isabella, married to her cousin, the Earl of Cork and Orrery; and Carolina, married to his brother Captain, the Hon. Courtenay Boyle. William Poyntz was at one time in the Tenth Hussars, and afterwards Captain of the Midhurst Volunteers. In 1796, he sat in Parliament for[273] St. Albans, and was re-elected in 1802, and 1806. In 1807, he was returned for Callington, and again in 1812-18. He represented Chichester from 1823 to 1826, and Ashburton, from 1831 to 1835; and then sat for Midhurst, till he resigned, and was succeeded by his son-in-law, Captain the Hon. Frederick Spencer. In politics he was a Liberal in the best sense of the word; firm and unwavering in his opinions in favour of progress, but opposed to destruction, and a staunch upholder of the Church.

In 1794, he married the Hon. Elizabeth Browne, only sister, and sole heiress of Viscount Montagu, who was drowned the year before at the Falls of Schaffausen. By her, Mr. Poyntz became possessed of Cowdray Park, in Sussex, and an extensive property, where they resided almost entirely after their marriage. They had two sons drowned in the prime of life, and in the sight of both parents, Mr. Poyntz being in the boat, and his wife looking on from the window of a house at Bognor, where the tragedy took place in 1815. Their three daughters in consequence became co-heiresses: Frances, Lady Clinton; Elizabeth, married to the Hon.[274] Frederick Spencer, who succeeded to the Earldom; and Isabella, Marchioness of Exeter.

In 1830, after a happy union of thirty-six years, Mrs. Poyntz died, deeply and universally regretted; and the widower removed to Hampton Court, after a time, to be nearer his daughters. For some years before his death, he was the cause of great anxiety to his family and friends from being constantly subject to fainting fits, the result, as was afterwards proved, of an accident in the hunting field, in 1833. In one of these seizures he expired suddenly, at his house on Hampton Court Green, beloved and lamented, not only by his surviving children, and his two surviving sisters, but by a large circle of acquaintance, and friends. In every class he was known, and loved for his warm heart, his genial humour, his sparkling wit. He was interred by the side of his wife, in her ancestral chapel in Easebourne Church, adjoining Cowdray Park, where a monument had been already erected to their two sons.

In early life Mr. Poyntz was a friend, and companion of his cousin George, Lord Sandwich, by whose will he was entrusted with the[275] guardianship of the young earl, then only seven years of age. Between the guardian and his ward an affection subsisted, scarcely inferior to that of parent, and child. Lord Sandwich spent many of his holidays at Cowdray, and the friendly relations which subsisted between him, and Mr. Poyntz were never interrupted till the death of the latter, in 1840.

The two families of Poyntz and Browne, (Lord Montagu) are now extinct, in the male line.