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drew up and presented to her a memorial containing an account of his whole administration, and exposing the ambitious designs of his rival. It was now his turn to find the truth of the lesson,—“ Put not your trust in princes." Anne received his memorial coldly, which so enraged him, that he made overtures to the whig party ; but here again he met with an ungracious reception. At length on the 27th of July, 1714, he was dismissed from his office; but his rival did not enjoy the fruits of his machinations, for within three days afterwards the queen expired; and the change which followed was so complete, that dreams of power were driven from the minds of the ex-statesmen by the necessity of devising plans for safety. The whigs had been so thoroughly exasperated by Harley's treachery, that after the accession of George the First they impeached him of high treason, and he was in consequence committed to the Tower, where he lay for two years. It would be unfair not to give Harley high praise for the courage with which he met the accusations brought against him. While his rival Bolingbroke fled in dismay from the threatened impeachment, he staid manfully to breast the storm, and his constancy was rewarded by a complete acquittal in 1717. After this time he retired into the country, and gave himself up to the literary pursuits which he had never wholly abandoned,—to the study of the fine arts,—and to the collection of that noble library, which, far more than his political career, has made his name European. In the society of Pope and other eminent men, with whom he had always lived in the closest intimacy, he was perhaps happier than in the most brilliant part of his political career, and the lonely student employed in high converse with the mighty dead, probably looked back without a sigh to the splendid miseries of a court. He expired on the 21st of May, 1724, and was buried in the tomb of his ancestors at Brampton-Brian.
Though the sketch which we have here given of Harley's career is necessarily brief and imperfect, it displays his conduct in a light sufficiently strong to make any remarks on his character almost superfluous. Yet such enthusiastic encomiums have been showered upon him by writers whose names are identified with some of the brightest parts of our literary history, that a few observations will not be out of place. Among the warmest of his panegyrists is Pope, who, in his epistle to him on the death of Parnell, addresses him in the following high-flown language :
" And sure if aught below the seats divine
Can touch immortals, 'tis a soul like thine ;
Never was praise more beautiful and more unjust. The sole attribute of a great mind which Harley possessed, was ambition. The love of power had taken such firm hold on his mind, that to obtain it he sacrificed friends, reputation, fame, peace of conscience, every thing which a wise or honourable man would most esteem; and yet when the glittering prize was in his grasp, he had neither skill to bear it worthily nor to retain it. There are some men who advance right onwards, with open unhesitating steps to the attainment of the object they have in view, seeming rather to descend upon than to rise to it; and there are others who crawl along the ground towards their mark, advancing here a little, and there a little, and working their way through any dirty track that opens before them. To this latter class Harley belonged. The only talent which he possessed in any perfection was dissimulation, and in that he was unrivalled. Great at a promise, incomparable in an intrigue, he esteemed no device too base, no stratagem too contemptible, which advanced him one step nearer to his object. Pampering the mischievous prejudices of a weak-minded sovereign-relieving the wants, and flattering the vanity of a waiting woman, that he might secure her influence with her mistress, – cajoling every party by professions of attachment to their interests,—falsifying any promise, and violating any engagement, which it was inconvenient to keep,-betraying all enemies, and all friends equally,—and veiling his trimming policy under the specious uame of moderation, he crept by a tortuous and shameful path to the summit of power. To overthrow his patrons, he made a promise of his support to the court at St Germains, and to injure his rival, he bound himself with equal readiness to uphold the Hanoverian succession. His devices succeeded in blinding men's eyes, when he was out of power, and it was impossible that the value of his professions should be put to the test; but when the time came for action, and it was found that nothing was to be performed, all saw through and despised him. Had he, even after his accession to supreme power, adopted any one determined and straightforward course of policy, however flagitious, he might, in spite of the contempt excited by the dirty machinations which he had followed to secure his elevation, have rescued himself from the scorn of posterity, by rising to the bad eminence of its hatred; but the duplicity of the factious intriguer for place characterized the prime minister, and made it impossible not to despise him. So undecided and inconsistent was he in all his actions, as almost to dispose us to join in the bitter sarcasm of Bolingbroke, that he was “a man of whom nature had intended to make a spy, or at most a captain of miners, and whom fortune in one of her whimsical moods had made a general.” Of him might be truly predicted, what was said of a great man in ancient times, “In rebus politicis, nihil simplex, nihil apertum, nihil sincerum.” Without decision enough to adopt one single bold measure,—without the talent requisite to make him formidable, where his character was known, without honesty sufficient to derive dignity from any other source than the splendours of office, he met the usual fate of time-servers ; and after finding himself detested by his colleagues, distrusted by his friends, despised by his enemies, and shunned by all, closed an inglorious career by a contumelious dismissal from the council of his sovereign.
It is pleasing to have to add that Harley's private character was one of spotless integrity. And let it ever be remembered to his honour, that, amidst all the storms of faction, he was the unvarying friend of learning and learned men. The praises of Pope and Defoe were showered upon himn with no sparing hands; and although they cannot be permitted to affect our opinion of his public conduct, they present some relief to the darker parts of his character. He was himself a man of great literary attainments, and so devoted to study, that it is great nat
said, he could in an instant lay his hand on any book, even the most insignificant in his magnificent library, though it contained not fewer than 100,000 volumes. The services which he rendered to literature by the collection of this splendid repository of learning, and of his invaluable manuscripts, which now form the prime ornament of our
nal museum, ought to be held in long and grateful remembrance. During the time that he was in the house of commons, he gained considerable celebrity as a skilful debater. His speaking is described by his friends, as exhibiting more of art, than the native grace of an original orator; and by his enemies as pedantic, and inelegant, trifling on matters of importance, and important on trifles, and constantly employing words to mystify rather than to explain. The pamphlets which he published certainly do not indicate any thing like high talent, though written with considerable dexterity. The published productions ascribed to him by Horace Walpole in his catalogue of royal and noble authors, are the following : An Essay upon Public Credit,' published in 1710, and reprinted in the Somers' collection of tracts,' vol. 2d. An Essay upon Loans, Somers' collection, vol. 2d. * A Vindication of the Rights of the Commons of England,' to be found in Somers' second collection, vol. 4th. And some familiar Verses, published in Swift's Letters, vol. 1. 1766.
BORN A. D. 1645.-DIED A.D. 1724.
Thomas Guy, the amiable friend of the poor and unfortunate, and founder of the noble hospital which bears his name, was the son of a lighterman and coal-dealer, and was born in Horsleydown, Southwark, in 1645. He was apprenticed to a bookseller in Cheapside, and having been admitted a freeman of the Stationers' company in 1668, was received into their livery in 1673. He began business with a stock of about £200, in the house which, till lately, formed the angle between Cornhill and Lombard-street, but which has been pulled down for the improvements now making in that neighbourhood. His first success was owing to the great demand for English bibles printed in Holland, in which he dealt largely ; but on the importation of these being stopped by law, he contracted with the university of Oxford for the privilege of printing bibles; and having furnished himself with types from Holland, carried on this branch of business for many years with great profit.
But whatever foundation he might have laid for his future wealth in the usual course of trade, no small portion of his property arose from his purchase of seamen's tickets. These he bought at a large discount, and afterwards subscribed in the South-sea company, which was established in 1710, for the purpose of discharging those tickets and giving a large interest. Here Mr Guy was so extensively, as well as cautiously concerned, that in 1720 he was possessed of £45,500 stock, by disposing of which when it bore an extremely advanced price, he realized a considerable sum. While we are compelled, in this sketch of Mr Guy's life, to associate his name with one of the most infamous transactions in the commercial history of our country, it is due to his memory, as well as to the cause of christian charity, to add, that no dishonourable imputation ever attached to him on this score. To his relations he was attentive while he lived; and his actions prove that he did not hoard up his means until they could no longer be of use to himself. The munifi. cent founder of Guy's hospital was a man of very humble appearance, and of a melancholy cast of countenance. One day, while pensively leaning over one of the bridges, he attracted the attention and commiseration of a bystander, who, apprehensive that he meditated self-destruction, could not refrain from addressing him with an earnest entreaty not to let his misfortunes tempt him to commit any rash act; then placing in his hand a guinea, with the delicacy of genuine benevolence, he hastily withdrew. Guy, roused from his reverie, followed the stranger, and warmly expressed his gratitude, but assured him he was mistaken in supposing him to be either in distress of mind or of circumstances, making an earnest request to be favoured with the name of the good man, his intended benefactor. The address was given, and they parted. Some years after, Guy observing the name of his friend in the bankrupt list, hastened to his house ; brought to his recollection their former interview; found, upon investigation, that no blame could be attached to him under bis misfortunes; intimated his ability, and also his full intention to serve him; entered into immediate arrangements with his creditors, and finally re-established him in a business, which ever after prospered in his hands, and in the hands of his children's children, for many years, in Newgate-street.
His humane plan of founding an hospital having been matured, Guy, at the age of seventy-six, procured from the governors of St Thomas's hospital, Southwark, the lease of a large piece of ground for a term of 999 years, at a rent of £30 a year. Having cleared the space, which was then occupied by a number of good dwelling-houses, he laid the first stone of his new building in 1722. He lived to see it covered in; but before the excellent machine had begun to work he was laid in the grave ; for the hospital received within its walls the first patient on the 6th of January, 1725, and its founder died on the 27th of December, 1724. His trustees faithfully effected the completion of his great and good design, and procured an act of parliament for establishing the foundation, according to the directions of his will. Some of the wards are for surgical cases, one for accidents; the remainder are filled according to circumstances. It is estimated, that of about three thousand patients who enter in the course of the year—the present average of admissions—nine-tenths go out cured. Besides this, the hospital relieves upwards of fifty thousand out-patients. The means of usefulness, indeed, enjoyed by this admirable establishment, have lately admitted of an abundant increase by the munificent bequest of £196,000 made a few years since by Mr Hunt, a hundred inmates more being accommodated in consequence.
BORN A. D. 1656.--DIED A. D. 1725.
This upright and accomplished statesman was descended from an old English family, but his father having served in the civil wars in Ireland, afterwards settled in Dublin as a merchant. His son, and only child, the subject of the present article, was born and educated in Dub. lin. Possessed of an ample patrimony, and connected by marriage with the earl of Bellamont, he soon entered into political life, and distinguished himself by his ardent zeal for the house of Orange. William rewarded his services by giving him the appointment of envoy-extraordinary to the court of Denmark, where he resided three years.
On his return home he published “An account of Denmark,' in which he laboured to teach his countrymen the value of civil and religious freedom, by exhibiting the effects of despotic government in Denmark. The book was most favourably received by the English public, and was speedily translated into foreign languages. It received the high approbation of the author of the · Characteristics,' who thus writes to Molesworth, many years after its publication : “You have long had my heart, even before I knew you personally. For the holy and truly pious man who revealed the greatest of mysteries,-he who, with a truly generous love to mankind and his country, pointed out the state of Denmark to other states, and prophesied of things highly important to the growing age,-he, I say, had already gained me as his sworn friend be. fore he was so kind as to make friendship reciprocal by his acquaintance and expressed esteeni."
Molesworth served his country in both kingdoms, being chosen menber of the Irish house of commons for the borough of Swordes; and of the English house for those of Bodmyn, St Michael, and East Retford. He was also a member of Anne's privy.council, until near the close of her majesty's reign, when he was found too liberal for the dominant party, and had excited the wrath of the lower house of convocation by his contemptuous treatment of that nest of bigots. Steele defended Molesworth in the “Crisis,' and Swift assailed him in his pamphlet entitled • Public Spirit of the Whigs. Dr William King had already laboured in his vocation to traduce the · Account of Denniark.
George I. made Molesworth a member of his Irish privy-council in 1714, and two years afterwards advanced him to the Irish peerage by the title of Baron Philipstown and Viscount Molesworth of Swordes. He died in 1725. Besides the work already mentioned, Molesworth was the author of several political tracts, all breathing a large and liberal spirit, and written with force and elegance. In the printed correspondence of Locke and Molyneux, there are several letters which show the high respect these eminent men had for the viscount.