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a footpad advancing in the dark, and behold, it is an old friend.
niay shake hands, Colonel, in the dark ; 't is better than fighting by daylight. Why should we quarrel because I am a Whig and thou art a Tory ? Turn thy steps and walk with me to Fulham, where there is a nightingale still singing in the garden, and a cool bottle in a cave I know of. You shall drink to the Pretender, if you like. I will drink my liquor in my own way.'
Letters of Addison to the young Earl of Warwick, dated simply at Chelsea, are said to have been written but this is merely traditional - in Sandford Manor House, at one time the residence of Nell Gwynne. This house, standing in 1885, was a little south of King's Road, towards the Thames.
That Addison was living in the village of Kensington in 1712, when Swift was his neighbor, there seems to be no question, although the site or the character of his house there is not now known.
The parish books do not give the name of Addison in either row (houses were not numbered in London till 1764), so that it is impossible to identify any particular dwelling now with the house of one of the kindest benefactors that Keusington
Square. society ever had. Still, it is pleasing to picture somewhere in the old square [Kensington Square] one of whom Thackeray, a hundred and forty years after, thus wrote from the same place : ‘When this man looks from the world, whose weaknesses he describes so benevolently, up to Heaven, which shines on us all, I can hardly fancy a human face lighted up with more serene rapture, or a human intellect thrilling with a purer love and adoration, than that of Joseph Addison.
Addison was married, in 1716, to the dowager Countess of Warwick; and their courtship Johnson likens to that of Sir Roger de Coverley with his disdainful widow. They do not seem to have been very happy in their union, which began and ended in the famous Holland House, Kensington Road, Kensington, one of the most interesting spots in all
England for the sake of its literary associations, and still standing in its noble grounds, in 1885.38 Addison, according to the traditions of Holland House, used,
when composing, to walk up and down the long gallery Moore's Dia- there, with a bottle of wine at each end of it, which ry, Oct. 23, he finished during the operation. There is a little
white house, too, near the turnpike, to which he used to retire when the Countess was particularly troublesome.
This little white house' was the White Horse Inn, which stood on the corner of what have since been called Holland Lane and Kensington Road. It has disappeared ; but on its site was built, in 1866, a public house called the Holland Arms Inn, where were preserved, in 1885, the fine old mahogany fittings of the original tavern, — benches upon which Addison and Steele have often sat, and tables which have held their bottles and their elbows, and heard their familiar talk.
It seems to have been in Holland House (for he died shortly afterwards) that Addison was visited by Milton's daughter, when
he requested her to bring him some evidences of her Leigh Hunt's Old birth. The moment he beheld her he exclaimed : Court Suburb, chap. • Madam, you need no other voucher ; your face is a
sufficient testimonial whose daughter you are.' It must have been very pleasing to Addison to befriend Milton's daughter, for he had been the first to popularize the great poet by his critiques on Paradise Lost,' in the Spectator.'
Addison died in Holland House, June 17, 1719.
The end of this useful life was now approaching. Addison had for some time been oppressed by shortness of breath, which
was now aggravated by a dropsy, and, finding his danLives of the ger pressing, he prepared to die conformably to his
own precepts and professions. . . . Lord Warwick
[his step-son] was a young man of very irregular life, and perhaps of loose opinions. Addison, for whom he did not
want respect, had very diligently endeavored to reclaim him, but his arguments and expostulations had no effect. One experiment, however, remained to be tried. When he found his life near its end, he directed the young Lord to be called, and when he desired, with great tenderness, to hear his last injunction, told him : 'I have sent for you that you may see how a Christian
This account of Addison's last hours is not entirely credited by later writers. Hunt, in his Old Court Suburb’ (chap. xv.), says :
The story originated with Young, who said he had it from Tickell, adding that the Earl led an irregular life which Addison wished to reclaim. But, according to Malone, who was a scrupulous inquirer, there is no evidence of the Earl's having led any such life ; and Walpole, in one of his letters that were published not long ago, startled we should rather say shocked — the world by telling them that Addison died of brandy. It is acknowledged by his best friends that the gentle moralist, whose bodily temperament was a sorry one as his mind was otherwise, had gradually been tempted to stimulate it with wine till he became intemperate in the indulgence. It is impossible to say what other stimulants might not gradually have crept in ; nor is it impossible that during the patient's last hours the physician himself might have ordered them.
It was but fitting that Addison, whose description of Westminster Abbey has been written in letters that cannot fade, should have found a resting-place within its walls, to await there, as he expresses it ("Spectator,' No. 26), that great day when we shall all of us be contemporaries, and make our appearance together.' He was buried in the north aisle of Henry the Seventh's Chapel; but his grave was unmarked for nearly a century, and the monument to his memory in the Poets' Corner was not erected until 1808.
Addison's body lay in state in the Jerusalem Chamber, and was borne thence to the Abbey at dead of night. The choir
sang a funeral hymn. Bishop Atterbury, one of those Tories who
had loved and honored the most accomplished of the Macaulay's Essays, Whigs, met the corpse, and led the procession by torch
light round the shrine of St. Edward, and the graves of the Plantagenets, to the Chapel of Henry VII.
Addison, even after his marriage, as has been seen, was not one of the most domestic of men; and it is easier now to trace him to his clubs and his taverns than to his own firesides. Addison's chief companions, before he married Lady Warwick,
were Steele, Davenant, etc. He used to breakfast with Spence's
one or other of them at his lodgings in St. James's Pope, section v., 1737- Place, dine at taverns with them, then to Button's,
and then to some tavern again for supper in the evening; and this was then the usual round of his life.
Addison studied all morning, then dined at a tavern, and went afterwards to Button's. Button had been a servant in the
Countess of Warwick's family, who [sic], under the Lives of the patronage of Addison, kept a coffee-house on the south Poets : Ad- side of Russell Street, about two doors from Covent
Garilen. Here it was that the wits of that time used to assemble. It is said that when Addison had suffered any vexation from the Countess he withdrew the company from Button's house. From this coffee-house he went again to a tavern, where he often sat late and drank too much wine.
It is reported to have been one of the most exquisite entertainments to the choice spirits, in the beginning of this [eighteenth]
century, to get Addison and Steele together in comnoisseur, pany for the evening. Steele entertained them till
he was tipsy, when the same wine that stupefied him only served to elevate Addison, who took up the ball just as Steele dropped it, and kept it up for the rest of the evening.
Addison frequented also the Devil Tavern in Street, opposite St. Dunstan's Church, the famous Devil Tavern of Ben Jonson (9. v.). Child's Bank, No. 1 Fleet Street, stands upon its site.
I dined to-day (October 12] with Dr. Garth and Mr. Addison at the Devil Tavern, near Temple Bar; and Garth treated. And it is well I dine every day, else I should Journal to
Stella, 1710. be longer making out my letters. Mr. Addison's election has passed easy and undisputed, and I believe if he had a mind to be chosen King he would not be refused.
Addison himself, in the Spectator,' tells of his familiarity : with other well-known lounging-places of his day :
Sometimes I am seen thrusting my head into a round of politicians at Will's, and listening with great attention to the narratives that are made in those little circular audi
Spectator, Sometimes I smoke a pipe at Child's, and No. 1. while I seem attentive to nothing but the ‘Postman,' overhear the conversation of every table in the room. I appear on Sunday nights at the St. James's Coffee House, and sometimes join the committee of politics in the inner room as one who comes there to hear and improve. My face is likewise very well known in the Grecian, the Cocoa Tree, and in the theatres.
Will's Coffee House, the father of the modern Club, played a very important part in the literature of the seventeenth and eighteenth centuries. It was on the northwest corner of Russell Street and Bow Street, Covent Garden, and included the two adjoining ises, one in each street. The old house, No. 21 Russell Street, still standing in 1885, is no doubt one of the original buildings.
Of Child's, in St. Paul's Churchyard, there is no trace left to-day, and even its exact site is unknown. The St. James's Coffee House was 'the last house but one on the southwest corner of St. James's Street, facing Pall Mall,' and was taken down in 1806. The Grecian stood on the site of a portion of Eldon Chambers, Devereux Court, Strand, between Essex Court and New Court in the Temple. It is marked by a tablet, and a bust of Essex, said to be the work of Caius Gabriel Cibber; and the Grecian Chambers at its back perpetuate its name. The Cocoa Tree Tavern stood at No. 64