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rather than a labour, for, by means of it, addition, subtraction, multiplication, division and even the extraction of roots are accomplished simply by the motion of counters. He adds that he has appended it to the Rabdologia, in addition to the promptuary, because he did not wish to bury it in silence nor to publish so small a matter by itself. With respect to the calculating rods, he mentions in the dedication that they had already found so much favour as to be almost in common use, and even to have been carried to foreign countries; and that he has been advised to publish his little work relating to their mechanism and use, lest they should be put forth in some one else's name.
John Napier died on the 4th of April 1617, the same year as that in which the Rabdologia was published. His will, which is extant, was signed on the fourth day before his death. No particulars are known of his last illness, but it seems likely that death came upon him rather suddenly at last. In both the Canonis descriptio and the Rabdologia, however, he makes reference to his ill-health. In the dedication of the former he refers to himself as “mihi jam morbis peně confecto,” and in the “Admonitio” at the end he speaks of his “infirma valetudo”; while in the latter he says he has been obliged to leave the calculation of the new canon of logarithms to others “ob infirmam corporis nostrivaletudinem.”
It has been usually supposed that John Napier was buried in St Giles's church, Edinburgh, which was certainly the burialplace of some of the family, but Mark Napier (Memoirs, p. 426) quotes Professor William Wallace, who, writing in 1832, gives strong reasons for believing that he was buried in the old church of St Cuthbert.
There can be no doubt that Napier's devotion to mathematics was not due to old age and the gout, and that he died in 1617 and not in 1616; still these sentences were written within eighteen years of Napier's death, and their author seems to have had some special sources of information. Additional probability is given to Hume's assertion by the fact that Merchiston is situated in St Cuthbert's parish. It is nowhere else recorded that Napier suffered from the gout. It has been stated that Napier's mathematical pursuits led him to dissipate his means. This is not so, for his will (Memoirs, p. 427) shows that besides his large estates he left a considerable amount of personal property.
The Canonis Descriptio on its publication in 1614, at once attracted the attention of Edward Wright, whose name is known in connexion with improvements in navigation, and Henry Briggs, then professor of geometry at Gresham College, London. The former translated the work into English, but he died in 1615, and the translation was published by his son Samuel Wright in 1616. Briggs was greatly excited by Napier's invention and visited him at Merchiston in 1615, staying with him a whole month; he repeated his visit in 1616 and, as he states, “would have been glad to make him a third visit if it had pleased God to spare him so long.” The logarithms introduced by Napier in the Descriptio are not the same as those now in common use, nor even the same as those now called Napierian or hyperbolic logarithms. The change from the original logarithms to common or decimal logarithms was made, by both Napier and Briggs, and the first tables of decimal logarithms were calculated by
Briggs, who published a small table, extending to 10oo, in 1617, and a large work, Arithmetica Logarithmica," containing logarithms of numbers to 30,000 and from 90,000 to 100,000, in 1624. (See LoGARITHM.) Napier's Descriptio of 1614 contains no explanation of the manner in which he had calculated his table. This account he kept back, as he himself states, in order to see from the reception met with by the Descriptio, whether it would be acceptable. Though written before the Descriptio it had not been prepared for press at the time of his death, but was published by his son Robert in 1619 under the title Mirifici Logarithmorum Canonis Constructio.” In this treatise (which was written before Napier had invented the name logarithm) logarithms are called “artificial numbers.” The different editions of the Descriptio and Constructio, as well as the reception of logarithms on the continent of Europe, and especially by Kepler, whose admiration of the invention almost equalled that of Briggs, belong to the history of logarithms (q.v.). It may, however, be mentioned here that an English translation of the Constructio of 1619 was published by W. R. Macdonald at Föinburgh in 1889, and that there is appended to this edition a complete catalogue of all Napier's writings, and their various editions and translations, English and foreign, all the works being carefully collated, and references being added to the various public libraries in which they are to be found. Napier's priority in the publication of the logarithms is unquestioned and only one other contemporary mathematician seems to have conceived the idea on which they depend. There is no anticipation or hint to be found in previous writers,” and it is very remarkable that a discovery or invention which was to exert so important and far-reaching an influence on astronomy and every science involving calculation was the work of a single mind. The more one considers the condition of science at the time, and the state of the country in which the discovery took place, the more wonderful does the invention of logarithms appear when algebra had advanced to the point where exponents were introduced, nothing would be more natural than that their utility as a means of performing multiplications and divisions should be remarked; but it is one of the surprises in the history of science that logarithms were invented as an arithmetical improvement years before their connexion with exponents was known. It is to be noticed also that the invention was not the result of any happy accident. Napier deliberately set himself to abbreviate multiplications and divisions—operations of so fundamental a character that it might well have been thought that they were in rerum natura incapable of abbreviation; and he succeeded in devising, by the help of arithmetic and geometry alone, the one * The title runs as follows: Arithmetica Logarithmica, sive Logarithmorum chiliades triginta. . . . Hos numeros primus invenit clarissimus vir Iohannes Neperus Baro Merchistonij; eos autem ex £ sententia mutavit, eorumque ortum et usum illustravit Henricus rtggitis. . . . * # full title was: Mirifici Logarithmorum Canonis Constructio; Eteorum ad naturales ipsorum numeros habitudines; und cum Appendice, de aliá ue praestantiore Logarithmorum specie condendd. Quibus accessere Propositiones ad triangula sphaerica faciliore falculo resolvenda: Und cum Annotationibus aliquot doctissimi D. Henrici Briggii, in eas & memoratam ap 'icem. Authore & Inventore Ioanne Nepero, Barone Merchistonii, &c. Scoto. Edinburgs, Excudebat Andreas Hart, Anno Domini 1619. There is also preceding this title-page an ornamental title-page, similar to that of the Descriptio of # the words are different, however, and run-Mirifics Logarithmorum Canonis Descriptio . . . Accesserunt Opera Posthuma: Primö, Mirifici ipsius canonis constructio, & Logarithmorum ad naturales ipsorum numeros habitudines. Secundó, Appendix de alid, edgue praestantiore Logarithmorum specie construenda. , Tertio, Propositiones quaedam eminentissimae, ad Triangula, sphaerica murd facilitate resolvenda.... It would appear that this title-page was to be substituted for the title-page of the Descriptio of 1614 by those who bound the two books together. - - *The work of Justus Byrgius is described in the article LogaRITHM. In that article it is mentioned that a Scotsman in 1594 in a letter to Tycho Brahe held out some hope of logarithms; it is likely that the person referred to is John Craig, son of Thomas Craig, who has been mentioned as one of the colleagues of John Napier's father as justice-depute.
great simplification of which they were susceptible—a simplification to which nothing essential has since been added.
When Napier published the Canonis Descriptio England had taken no part in the advance of science, and there is no British author of the time except Napier whose name can be placed in the same rank as those of Copernicus, Tycho Brahe, Kepler, Galileo, or Stevinus. In England, Robert Recorde had indeed published his mathematical treatises, but they were of trifling importance and without influence on the history of science. Scotland had produced nothing, and was perhaps the last country in Europe from which a great mathematical discovery would have been expected. Napier lived, too, not only in a wild country, which was in a lawless and unsettled state during most of his life, but also in a credulous and superstitious age. Like Kepler and all his contemporaries he believed in astrology, and he certainly also had some faith in the power of magic, for there is extant a deed written in his own handwriting containing a contract between himself and Robert Logan of Restalrig, a turbulent baron of desperate character, by which Napier undertakes “to serche and sik out, and be al craft and ingyne that he dow, to tempt, trye, and find out” some buried treasure supposed to be hidden in Logan's fortress at Fastcastle, in consideration of receiving one-third part of the treasure found by his aid. Of this singular contract, which is signed, “Robert Logane of Restalrige” and “Jhone Neper, Fear of Merchiston,” and is dated July 1594, a facsimile is given in Mark Napier's Memoirs. As the deed was not destroyed, but is in existence now, it is to be presumed that the terms of it were not fulfilled, but the fact that such a contract should have been drawn up by Napier himself affords a singular illustration of the state of society and the kind of events in the midst of which logarithms had their birth. Considering the time in which he lived, Napier is singularly free from superstition: his Plaine Discovery relates to a method of interpretation which belongs to a later age; he shows no trace of the extravagances which occur everywhere in the works of Kepler; and none of his writings contain allusions to astrology or magic.
After Napier's death his manuscripts and notes came into the possession of his second son by his second marriage, Robert, who edited the Constructio; and Colonel Milliken Napier, Robert's lineal male representative, was still in the session of many of these private papers at the close of the 18t £, On one occasion when Colonel Napier was called from home on foreign service, these papers, together with a portrait of John Napier and a Bible with his autograph, were deposited for safety in a room of the house at Milliken, in Renfrewshire. During the owner's absence the house was burned to the ground, and all the papers and relics were destroyed. The manuscripts had not been arranged or examined, so that the extent of the loss is unknown. Fortunately, however, Robert Napier had transcribed his father's manuscript De Arte Logistica, and the copy escaped the fate of the originals in the manner explained in the following note, written in the volume containing them by Francis, seventh Lord Napier: “John Napier of '#' inventor of the logarithms, left his manuscripts to his son Robert, who appears to have caused the following pages to have been written out fair from his father's notes, for M: Briggs, professor of geometry at Oxford. They were given to Francis, the fifth Lord Napier, by William Napier of Culcreugh, Esq., heir-male of the above-named Robert. Finding them in a neglected state, amongst my family papers, I have bound them together, in order to preserve them entire.—NAPier, 7th March 18ol.”
An account of the contents of these manuscripts was given by Mark Napier in the appendix to his Memoirs of John Napier, and the manuscripts themselves were edited in their entirety by him in 1839 under the title De Arte Logistica Joannis Naperi Merchistonia Baronis Libri qui supersunt. Impressum Edinburgi M.D.ccc.xxx.1x., as one of the publications of the Bannatyne Club. The treatise occupies one hundred and sixty-two pages, and there is an introduction by Mark Napier of ninety-four pages. The Arithmetic consists of three books, entitled—(1) £ Computationibus Quantitatum omnibus Logisticae speciebus communium; (2) De Logistica Arithmetica; (3) De Logistica Geometrica. At the end of this book occurs the note—“I could find no more of this geometricall pairt amongst all his fragments.”. The Algebra Joannis Naper, Merchistonii Baronis consists of two books: (i) “De nominata Algebrae parte; (2) De positiva sive cossica Algebrac parte,” and concludes with the words, “ There is no more of his algebra orderlie sett doun." The transcripts are entirely in the handwritin of Robert Napier himself, and the two notes that have been quote prove that they were made from Napier's own papers. The title.
the top squares, every square is divided
which is written on the first leaf, and is also in Robert Napier's writing, runs thus: “The Baron of Merchiston his booke of Arithmeticke and Algebra. For Mr Henrie Briggs, Professor of Geometrie at Oxforde." These treatises were probably composed before Napier had invented the logarithms or any £ apparatuses described in the Rabdologia; for they contain no allusion to the principle of loga. rithms, even where we should expect to find 'c' a £ the one solitary sentence where the Rabdologia is mentioned ("sive omnium, facillime per ossa Rhabdologiae nostrae") was probably added afterwards. It is worth while to notice that this reference occurs in a chapter “ De Multiplicationis et Partitionis compendiis miscellaneis," which, supposing the treatise to have been written in Napier's younger days, may have been his earliest production on a subject over which his subsequent labours were to exert so enormous an influence Napier uses abundantes and defectivae for itive and negative, defining them as meaning greater or less t£ nothing ("Abundantes sunt quantitates majores nihilo: defectivae sunt quantitates minores nihilo"). The same definitions occur also in the Canoni: Descriptio (1614), p. 5: “Logarithmos sinuum, qui semper majores nihilo sunt, abundantes vocamus, et hoc signo +..aut nullo praenotamus. Logarithmos autem minores nihilo defectivos vocamus, praenotantes, eis hoc signum -.” Napier may thus have been the first to use the expression "quantity less than nothing.” He uses “radicatum" for power (for root, power, exponent, his words are radix, radicatum. index). Apart from the interest attaching to these manuscripts as the work of Napier, they possess an independent value as affording evidence of the exact state of his algebraical knowledge at the time when logarithms were invented. There is nothing to show whether the transcripts were sent to Briggs as intended and returned by him, or whether they were not sent to him. Among the Merchiston papers is a thin quarto volume in Robert Napier's writing containing a digest of the principles of alchemy; it is addressed to his son, and on the first leaf there are directions that it is to remain in his charter-chest and be kept secret except from a few. This treatise and the transcripts seem to be the only manuscripts which have escaped destruction. The principle of “Napier's bones" may be easil imagining ten rectangular slips of cardboard, eac nine squares. In the top squares of the slips the ten digits are written, and each slip contains in its nine squares the first 2 8 || 5 nine multiples of the digit, which appears J in the top square. With the exception of
explained by divided into
being written on one side and the tens on
the other, so that when a multiple consists
of two figures they are separated by the
diagonal. F# 1 shows the slips corre- % e
4 into two parts by a diagonal, the units L/6 8
sponding to the numbers 2, o, 8, 5 placed side by side in contact with one another, I' and next to them is placed another slip containing, in squares without , diagonals, |1 the first nine digits. The slips thus placed 4 in contact give the multiples of the number | 1 2085, the digits in each parallelogram being 6 added together: for example, correspond- 1 ing to the number 6 on the right-hand slip, LZ8 we have o, 8+3, o-i-4, 2, 1; whence we find o, 1, 5, 2, 1 as the digits, written backwards, of 6X2085. The use of the slips for the purpose of multiplication is now evident: thus to multiply,2085 by 736 we take out in this manner the multiples corresponding to 6,3,7, and set down the digits as they are obtained, from right to left, shifting them back one place and adding up the columns as in ordinary multiplication, viz. the figures as written down are
Napier's rods or bones consist of ten oblong pieces of wood or other material with square ends. Each of the four faces of each rod contains multiples of one of the nine digits, and is similar to one of the slips just described, the first rod containing the multiples of o, 1, 9, 8, the second of o, 2, 9.7, the third of o, 3, 9, 6, the fourth of o, 4.9, 5, the fifth of 1, 2, 8, 7, the sixth of '' 8, 6, the seventh of 1, 4, 8, 5, the eighth of 2, 3, 7, 6, the ninth of 2, 4, 7, 5, and the tenth of 3, 4, 6, 5. Each rod therefore contains on two of its faces multiples of digits which are complementary to those on the other two faces; and the multiples of a digit and of its complement are reversed in position. The arrangernent of the numbers on the rods will be evident from fig. 2, which represents the four faces of the fifth rod. The set of ten rods is thus equivalent to four sets of slips as described above, and by their means we may multiply every number less than 11,111, and also any number (consisting of course
of not more than ten digits) which can be formed by the top digits of the bars when placed side by side. Of course two sets of rods may be used, and by their means we may multiply every number less than 111,111,111 and so on. It will be noticed that the rods only give the multiples of the number which is to be multiplied, or of the divisor, when they are used for division, and it is evident that they would be of little use to any one who knew the multiplication table as far as 9×9. In multiplications or divisions of any length it is generally convenient to begin by forming a table of £e first nine multiples of the multiplicand or divisor, and Napier's bones at best inerely provide such a table, and in an incomplete form, for the additions of the two figures in the same parallelogram have to be performed each time # rods are used. The ogta attracted more general attention than the logarithms, and as # been mentioned, there were several editions on the Continent. Nothing shows more clearly the rude state of arithmetical knowledge at the beginning of the 17th century than the universal satisfaction with which Napier's 1|invention was welcomed by, all classes and rearded as a real aid to calculation. Napier also escribes in the Rabdologia two other larger rods to facilitate the extraction of square and cube roots. In the Rabdologia the rods are called “ virgulae,”, but in the passage quoted above from the manuscript on arithmetic they are referred to as “bones" (ossa). Besides the logarithms and the calculating rods or bones, Napier's name is £ to certain rules and formulae in spherical trigonometry. “Napier's rules of circular parts,” which include the complete system of formulae for the solution of right-angled triangles: may be enunciated as follows. Leaving the '' angle out of consideration, the sides including the right angle, the complement of the hypotenuse, and the complements of the other angles are called the circular parts of the triangle. Thus there are five circular parts, a, b, 90°–A, 90°—c, 90°-B, and these are supposed to be arranged in this order (i.e. the order in which they occur in the triangle) round a circle. Selecting any part and calling it the middle part, the two parts next it are called the adjacent parts and the remaining two parts the opposite parts. The rules then are
- cos}(A-B) -by-sinkA-B) tan *(a+b) ####tank. tan? (a-b) sin}(ATB) They were first published after his death in the Constructio amon the formulae in spherical trigonometry, which were the results o his latest work. Robert Napier says that these results would have been reduced to order and demonstrated consecutively but for his father's death. 9: one of the four analogies is actually given by Napier, the other three being added by Briggs in the remarks which are appended to Napier's results. The work left by Napier is, however, rough and unfinished, and it is uncertain £ he knew of the other formulae or not. They are, however, so simply deducible from the results he has given that all the four analogies may be properly called by his name. An analysis of the formulae contained in the Descriptio and Constructio is given by Delambre in vol. i. of his Histoire de l'Astronomie moderne. To Napier seems to be due the first use of the decimal point in arithmetic. Decimal fractions were first introduced by Stevinus in his tract La Disme, published in 1585, but he used cumbrous exponents (numbers enclosed in circles) to distinguish the different denominations, primes, seconds, thirds, &c. Thus, for example, he
dologia Napier gives an “Admonitio pro Decimali Arithmetica,” in which he commends the fractions of Stevinus and gives an example of their use, the division of 861oo4 by 43?: The quotient is written 1993,273 in the work, and 1993.3'7'3” in the text. This single instance of the use of the decimal point in the midst of an arithmetical process, if it stood alone, would not suffice to establish a claim for its introduction, as the real introducer of the decimal point is the person who first saw that a £ or line as scparator was all that was required to distinguish ween the integers and fractions, and used it as a permanent notation and not merely in the course of performing an arithmetical operation. The decimal point is, however, used systematically in the Constructio (1619), there being perhaps two hundred decimal points altogether in the book.
The decimal point is defined on p. 6 of the Constructio in the words: “In numeris periodosic in se distinctis, quicquid post periodum notatur fractio est, cujus denominatorest unitas cum tot £ post se, quot sunt figurae post periodum. Ut 1ooooooo-o-; valet idem, quod looooooot!". Item 25.803, idem quod 25% Item -oooso21, idem valet, quod Totòiww.8 sic de cacteris." On p. 8, 1o 502 is multipli # 3.216, and the result found to be 33-77.4432; and on pp. 23 and 24 occur decimals not attached to integers, viz. 4999712 and -ooo.4950. These examples show that Napier was in possession of all the conventions and attributes that enable the decimal point to complete so symmetrically our system of notation, viz. (1) £, that a point or separatrix was quite enough to separate integers from decimals, and that no signs to indicate primes, seconds, &c., were required; (2) he used ciphers after the decimal point and preceding the first significant figure; and (3) he had no objection to a decimal standing by itself without any integer. Napier thus had complete command over decimal fractions and the use of the decimal point. Briggs also used decimals, but in a form not quite so convenient as Napier. Thus he prints 63-0957379 as # viz. he prints a bar under the tlecimals; this notation first appears without any explanation in his “Lucubrationes” £ to the Constructio. Briggs seems to have used the notation all his life, but in writing it, as appears from manuscripts of his, he added also a small vertical line just high enough to fix distinctly which two figures it was intended to separate: thus he might have written 63 7379. The vertical line was printed by Oughtred and some of Briggs's successors. It was a long time before decimal arithmetic came into general use, and all through the 17th century exponential marks were in common use. There seems but little doubt that Napier was the first to make use of a decimal separator, and it is curious that the separator which he used, the point, should be that which has been ultimately adopted, and after a long period of partial disuse. The hereditary office of king's poulterer (Pultrie Regis) was for many generations in the family of Merchiston, and descended to John Napier. The office, '. Napier states, is repeatedly mentioned in the family charters as appertaining to the “pultre landis" near the village of Dene in the shire of £o: The duties were to be performed by the possessor or his deputy; and the king Was .#!' demand the yearly homage of a present of poultry from the feudal holder. The pultrelands and the office were sold by John Napier in 1610 for 17oo marks, With the exception of the pultrelands all the estates he inherited descended to his posterity. With regard to the spelling of the name, Mark Napier states that among the family papers there exist a great many documents signed b j' Napier. His usual signature was “Jhone, Neper.” but in a letter written in 1608, and in '' deeds signed after that datc. he wrote “Jhone Nepair.” His letter to the king prefixed to the Plaine Discovery is signed “John Napeir.” His own children, who sign deeds along with him, use every mode except Napier, the form now adopted by the family, and which is comparatively modern. In Latin ' always wrote his name “Neperus.” The form." Neper” is the oldest, as j' third Napier of Merchiston, so spelt it in the 15th century. Napier frequently signed his name “Jhone Neper, Fear of Merchiston." He was "Fear of Merchiston" because, more majorum, he had been invested with the fee of his paternal barony during the lifetime of his father, who retained the liferent. He has been sometimes erroneously called “Peer of Merchiston,” and in the 1645 edition of the Plaine Discovery he is so styled (see Mark Napier's
Memoirs, pp. 9 and '' and Libri qui supersunt, p. #'. The bibliography of Napier's work attached to W. R. Macdonald's translation # anonis Constructio (1889) is complete and valuable. Napier's three mathematical works are reprinted by N. L. W. A. Gravelaar in Verhandelingen der Kon. Akad. van Wei te Amsterdam, 1. sectie, deel 6 (1899) (J. W. L. G.)
NAPIER, SIR WILLIAM FRANCIS PATRICK (1785-1860), British soldier and military historian, third son of Colonel George Napier (1751-1804), and brother of Sir Charles James Napier (see above), was born at Celbridge, near Dublin, on the 17th of December 1785. He became an ensign in the Royal Irish Artillery in 1800, but at once exchanged into the 62nd, and was put on half-pay in 1802. He was afterwards made a cornet in the Blues by the influence of his uncle the duke of Richmond, and for the first time did actual military duty in this regiment, but he soon fell in with Sir John Moore's suggestion that he should exchange into thc 52nd, which was about to be trained in the famous camp of Shorncliffe. Through Sir John Moore he soon obtained a company in the 43rd, joined that regiment at Shorncliffe and became a great favourite with Moore. He served in Denmark, and was present at the engagement of Kioge, and, his regiment being shortly afterwards sent to Spain, he bore himself nobly through the retreat to Corunna, the hardships of which permanently impaired his health. . In 1809 he became aide-de-camp to the duke of Richmond, lord lieutenant of Ireland, but joined the 43rd when that regiment was ordered again to Spain. With the light brigade (the 43rd, 52nd, and 95th), under the command of General Craufurd, he marched to Talavera in the famous forced march which he has described in his History, and had a violent attack of pleurisy on the way. He, however, refused to leave Spain, was wounded on the Coa, and shot near the spine at Cazal Nova. His conduct was so conspicuous during the pursuit of Masséna after he left the lines of Torres Vedras that he as well as his brother George was recommended for a brevet majority. He became brigade major, was present at Fuentes d’Onor, but had so bad an attack of ague that he was obliged to return to England. In England he married Caroline Amelia Fox, daughter of General Henry Fox and niece of the statesman Fox. Three weeks after his marriage he again started for Spain, and was present at the storming of Badajoz, where his great friend Colonel M‘Leod was killed. In the absence of the new lieutenant-colonel he took command of the 43rd regiment (he was now a substantive major) and commanded it at the battle of Salamanca. After a short stay at home he again joined his regiment at the Pyrenees, and did his greatest military service at the battle of the Nivelle, where, with instinctive military insight, he secured the most strongly fortified part of Soult's position, practically without orders. He served with his regiment at the battles of the Nive, where he received two wounds, Orthes, and Toulouse. For his services he was made brevet lieutenant-colonel, and one of the first C.B.'s. Like his brother Charles he then entered the military college at Farnham. He commanded his regiment in the invasion of France after Waterloo, and remained in France with the army of occupation until 1819, when he retired on half-pay. As it was impossible for him to live on a major's half-pay with a wife and family, he determined to become an artist, and took a house in Sloane Street, where he studied with George Jones, the academician. The years he had spent in France he had occupied in improving his general education, for, incredible as it seems, the author of the History of the War in the Peninsula could not spell or write respectable English till that time. But his career was to be great in literature, not in art. The tendency appeared in an able review of Jomini's works (Edinburgh Rev.) in 1821, and in 1823 Mr Bickersteth (afterwards Lord Langdale) suggested to him the expediency of writing a history of the Peninsular War. For some time he did not take kindly to the suggestion, but at last determined to become an author in order to defend the memory of Sir John Moore, and to prevent the glory of his old chief being overshadowed by that of Wellington. The duke of Wellington himself gave him much assistance, and handed over to him the whole of Joseph Bonaparte's correspondence which had been taken at the battle of Vittoria; this was all in cipher, but Mrs Napier, with great patience, discovered the keys. Marshal Soult also took an active interest in the work and arranged for the French translation of Mathieu Dumas. In 1828 the first volume of the History appeared. The publisher, John Murray, indeed, was disappointed in the sale of the first volume and Napier published the remainder himself. But it was at once seen that the great deeds of the Peninsular War were about to be fitly commemorated. The excitement which followed the appearance of each volume is proved by the innumerable pamphlets issued by those who believed themselves to be attacked, and by personal altercations with many distinguished officers. But the success of the book was proved still more by the absence of competition than by these bitter controversies. The histories of Southey and Lord Londonderry fell still-born, and Sir George Murray, Wellington's quartermaster-general, who had determined to produce the history, gave up the attempt in despair. This success was due to a combination of qualities which have justly secured for Napier the title of being the greatest military historian England has produced. When in 1840 the last volume of the History was published, his fame not only in England but in France and Germany was safely established. His life during these years had been chiefly absorbed in his History, but he had warmly sympathized with the movement
for political reform which was agitating England. The Radicals of Bath and many other cities and towns pressed him to enter parliament, and Napier was actually invited to become the military chief of a national guard to obtain reforms by force of arms. He refused the dangerous honour on the ground that he was in bad health and had a family of eight children. In 1830 he had been promoted colonel, and in 1842 he was made a majorgeneral and given the lieutenant-governorship of Guernsey. Here he found plenty of occupation in controlling the relations between the soldiers and the inhabitants, and also in working out proposals for a complete scheme of reform in the government of the island. While he was at Guernsey his brother Charles had conquered Sind, and the attacks made on the policy of that conquest brought William Napier again into the field of literature. In 1845 he published his History of the Conquest of Scinde, and in 1851 the corresponding History of the Administration of Scinde— books which in style and vigour rivalled the great History, but which, being written for controversial purposes, were not likely to maintain enduring popularity. In 1847 he resigned his governorship, and in 1848 was made a K.C.B., and settled at Scinde House, Clapham Park. In 1851 he was promoted lieutenant-general. His time was fully occupied in defending his brother, in revising the numerous editions of his History which were being called for, and in writing letters to The Times on every conceivable subject, whether military or literary. His energy is the more astonishing when it is remembered that he never recovered from the effects of the wound he had received at Cazal Nova, and that he often had to lie on his back for months together. His domestic life was shadowed by the incurable affliction of his only son, and when his brother Charles died in 1853 the world seemed to be darkening round him. He devoted himself to writing the life of that brother, which appeared in 1857, and which is in many respects his most characteristic book. In the end of 1853 his younger brother, Captain Henry Napier, R.N., died, and in 1855 his brother Sir George (see below). Inspired by his work, he lived on till the year 1860, when, broken by trouble, fatigue and ill-health, he died (February 12) at Clapham. Four months earlier he had been promoted to the full rank of general. As a military historian Sir William Napier is incomparably superior to any other English writer, and his true compeers are Thucydides, Caesar and Davila. All four had been soldiers in the wars they describe; all four possessed a peculiar insight into the mainsprings of action both in war and peace; and each a peculiar and inimitable style. , Napier always wrote as if he was burning with an inextinguishable desire to express what he was feeling, which gives his style a peculiar spontaneity, and yet he rewrote the first volume of his History no less than six times. His descriptions of sieges and of battles are admirable by themselves, his analyses of the peculiarly intricate Spanish intrigues are even more remarkable, while the descriptions and analyses are both lit up with flashes of political wisdom and military insight. It is to be noted that he displays the spirit of the partisan, even when most impartial, and defends his opinions, even when most undoubtedly true, as if he were arguing some controverted question. If his style was modelled on anything, it was on Caesar's commentaries, and a thorough, knowledge of the writings of the Roman eneral will often explain allusions in Napier. The portraits of # John Moore and Colonel M'Leod, and the last paragraphs descriptive of the storming of Badajoz, may be taken as examples of his great natural eloquence. His brother, SIR GEORGE THOMAs NAPIER (1784–1855), entered the army in 18oo, and served with distinction under Moore and Wellington in the Peninsula—and lost his right arm at the storming of Badajoz. He became major-general in 1837, K.C.B. in 1838 and lieutenant-general in 1846. He was governor and commander-in-chief at the Cape from 1839 to 1843, during which time the abolition of slavery and the expulsion of the Boers from Natal were the chief events. He was offered, but declined, the chief command in India after Chillianwalla, and also that of the Sardinian army in 1849. He became full general in 1854. He died at Geneva on the 16th of September 1855. His autobiography, Passages in the Early Military Life of General Sir G. T. Napier, was published by his surviving son, General W. C. E. Napier (the author of an important work on outpost duty), in 1885.
The youngest brother, HENRY EDwARD NAPIER (1789-1853), served in the navy during the Napoleonic wars, retired as a captain, and wrote a learned Florentine History from the earliest authentic Records to the Accession of Ferdinand III, of Tuscany (1846-1847).
For Sir William Napier's life, see his Life and Letters, edited by the Right Honourable H. A. Bruce (Lord Aberdare) (2 vols., 1862).
NAPIER AND ETTRICK, FRANCIS NAPIER, BARON (1819– 1898), British diplomatist, was descended from the ancient Scottish family of Napier of Merchistoun, his ancestor Sir Alexander Napier (d. c. 1473) being the elder son of Alexander Napier (d. c. 1454), provost of Edinburgh, who obtained lands at Merchistoun early in the 15th century. Sir Alexander was comptroller of the household of the king of Scotland, and was often sent to England and elsewhere on public business. Of his descendants one Napier of Merchistoun was killed at Sauchieburn, another fell at Flodden and a third at Pinkie. The seventh Napier of Merchistoun was Sir Archibald Napier (1534–1608), master of the Scottish mint, and the eighth was John Napier (q.v.) the inventor of logarithms. John's eldest son, Sir Archibald Napier (c. 1576–1645), was treasurer-depute of Scotland from 1622 to 1631, and was created Lord Napier of Merchistoun in 1627. He married Margaret Graham, sister of the great marquess of Montrose, whose cause he espoused, and he wrote some Memoirs which were published in Edinburgh in 1793. His son Archibald, the 2nd lord (1625-1658), fought under Montrose at Auldearn, at Alford, at Kilsyth and at Philiphaugh, and was afterwards with his famous uncle on the continent of Europe.
His son, Archibald, the 3rd lord (d. 1683), was succeeded by
special arrangement in the title, first by his nephew, Thomas Nicolson (1669-1686), a son of his sister Jean and her husband Sir Thomas Nicolson, Bart. (d. 1670), and then by his sister Margaret (d. 1706), the widow of John Brisbane (d. 1684). The 6th lord was Margaret's grandson Francis Scott (c. 1702-1773), a son of Sir William Scott, Bart., of Thirlestane (d. 1725). Francis Scott, who took the additional name of Napier, had a large family, his sons including William, the 7th lord, and Colonel George Napier (1751–1804). His famous grandsons are dealt with above. Another literary member of the family was Mark Napier (1798-1879), called by Mr Andrew Lang “the impetuous biographer of Montrose,” who wrote Memoirs of John Napier of Merchiston (1834), Montrose and the Covenanters (1838), Memoirs of Montrose (1856), Memorials of Graham of Claverhouse (1859-1862), and a valuable legal work, The Law of Prescription in Scotland (1839 and again 1854). William, 7th Lord Napier (1730-1775), was succeeded as 8th lord by his son Francis (17581823), who, after serving in the English army during the American War of Independence, was lord high commissioner to the general assembly of the Church of Scotland, and compiled a genealogical account of his family which is still in manuscript. His son William John, the 9th lord (1786-1834), who was present at the battle of Trafalgar, was the father of Francis Napier, Lord Napier and Ettrick. Born on the 15th of September 1819 Francis entered the diplomatic service in 1840, and was employed in successive posts at Vienna, Constantinople, Naples, Washington and the Hague. During this time he earned the highest opinions both at home and abroad. In 1860 he became ambassador at St Petersburg, and in 1864 at Berlin. In 1866 he was appointed governor of Madras, and was at once confronted with a serious famine in the northern districts. In dealing with this and other problems he showed great activity and practical sense, and he encouraged public works, particularly irrigation. In 1872 he acted for a few months as Viceroy, after Lord Mayo's assassination; and on Lord Northbrook's appointment to the office he returned to England, being created a baron of the United Kingdom (Baron Ettrick of Ettrick) for his services. He continued, both in England and in Scotland, to take great interest in social questions: He was for a time a member of the London School Board, and he was chairman of the Crofters' Commission in 1883, the result of which was the appointment of a permanent body to deal with questions affecting the Scottish crofters and cottars. He died at XIX. 4
Florence on the 19th of December 1898, leaving a widow and three sons, the eldest of whom, William John George (b. 1846), succeeded to his titles. NAPIER OF MAGDALA, ROBERT CORNELIS NAPIER, 1ST BARON (1810-1890), British field-marshal, son of Major Charles Frederick Napier, who was wounded at the storming of Meester Cornelis (Aug. 26, 1810) in Java and died some months later, was born at Colombo, Ceylon, on the 6th of December 1810. He entered the Bengal Engineers from Addiscombe College in 1826, and after the usual course of instruction at Chatham, arrived in India in November 1828. For some years he was employed in the irrigation branch of the public works department, and in 1838 he laid out the new hill station at Darjeeling. Promoted captain in January 1841, he was appointed to Sirhind, where he laid out cantonments on a new principle-known as the Napier system-for the troops returning from Afghanistan. In December 1845 he joined the army of the Sutlej, and commanded the Engineers at the battle of Mudki, where he had a horseshot under him. At the battle of Ferozeshah on the 31st December he again had his horse shot under him, and, joining the 31st Regiment on foot, was severely wounded in storming the entrenched Sikh camp. He was present at the battle of Sobraon on 10th February 1846, and in the advance to Lahore; was mentioned in despatches for his services in the campaign, and received a brevet majority. He was chief engineer at the reduction of Kote-Kangra by Brigadier-General Wheeler in May 1846, and received the thanks of government. He was then appointed consulting engineer to the Punjab resident and council of regency, but was again called to the field to direct the siege of Multan. He was wounded in the attack on the entrenched position in September 1848, but was present at the action of Shujabad, the capture of the suburbs, the successful storm of Multan on 23rd January 1849, and the surrender of the fort of Chiniot. He then joined Lord Gough, took part, as commanding engineer of the right wing, in the battle of Gujrat in February 1849, accompanied Sir W. R. Gilbert in his pursuit of the Sikhs and Afghans, and was present at the passage of the Jhelum, the surrender of the Sikh army, and the surprise of Attock. For his services he was mentioned in despatches and received a brevet lieutenant-colonelcy. At the close of the war Napier was appointed civil engineer to the board of administration of the annexed Punjab province, and carried out many important public works during his tenure of office. In December 1852 he commanded a column in the first Hazara expedition, and in the following year against the Boris; and for his services in these campaigns was mentioned in despatches, received the special thanks of government and a brevet-colonelcy. He was appointed military secretary and adjutant-general to Sir James Outram's force for the relief of Lucknow in the Indian Mutiny in 1857, and was engaged in the actions which culminated in the first relief of Lucknow. He directed the defence of Lucknow until the second relief, when he was severely wounded in crossing a very exposed space with Outram and Havelock to meet Sir Colin Campbell. He was chief of the staff to Outram in the defence of the Alambagh position, and drew up the plan of operations for the attack of Lucknow, which was approved by Sir Colin Campbell and carried out by Napier, as brigadier-general commanding the Engineers, in March 1858. On the fall of Lucknow Napier was most favourably mentioned in despatches, and made C.B. He joined Sir Hugh Rose as second-in-command in his march on Gwalior, and commanded the 2nd brigade at the action of Morar on the 16th June. On the fall of Gwalior he was entrusted with the task of pursuing the enemy. With only 700 men he came up with Tantia Topi and 12,000 men on the plains of Jaora Alipur, and completely defeated him, capturing all his guns (25), ammunition and baggage. On Sir Hugh Rose's departure he took command of the Gwalior division, captured Paori in August, routed Ferozeshah, a prince of the house of Delhi, at Ranode in December, and, in January 1859, succeeded in securing the surrender of Man Singh and Tantia Topi, which ended the war. For his services Napier received the thanks of parliament and of the Indian government, and was made K.C.B. 2a