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- REVIEW OF HISTORICAL BOOKS.
CONTINUATION OF THE LIFE OF
CHATTERTON. FROM P. 512.
studies were defultory. Of medical authors he read several, and, at his own
reqnelt, received from Mr. Barrett inOF
F this discovery, and the Poems structions in furgery. One day he apo
of Rowley, Chatterton, amongst plied to heraldry and antiquities; anhis friends, was frequently talking. other to metaphysics and mathematics ; Mr. Catcott, of Brittol, hearing the and the next to music, astronomy, and circumstance, defred, in consequence, medicine. Having a predilection for to be introduced to hiin, and obtained antiquities, he procured from Mr. Barfrom him, readily and gratuitoufly, at rett, Skinner's Etymologicon and Bentheir firft interview, the Bristow Tra- fon's Vocabulary, but returned them as gedy, Rowley's Epitaph on Canyng's useless, being written in Latin. The ancestor, with some smaller pieces. A place of these he supplied with the Dicfew days after Chatterton carried to him tionary of Kersey, and Speght's Glossary others; amongst which was the Yellow to Chaucer, the latter of which he tranRoll. About this time, Mr. Barrett, scribed. He always was fond of the of Bristol, a respectable furgeon, have fields, and especially Redcliffe Meaing undertaken the history of that city, dows, and of talking of the MSS. and the pieces in Mr. Catcott's poffeffion reading them there. One ipot he atwere communicated to him. It is ob- fected in view of the church, and from servable, that in Mr. Catcott's first it would recapitulate long past events, conversation with Cha:terton, the latter apparently unknown. The attention, Ixentioned the titles of most of the however, of Chatterton whilst at Briltol, poems which have fince been printed ; was not entirely devoted to Rowley. tkough heafterwardsgrew reserved about From before November 1768, he began them, and with difficulty parted with to write for magazines ; and during any more originals. Several, indeed, 1769, his contributions were many and he owned he had destroyed, and one in various, whilft extracts from Rowley particular, a part of which Mr. Barrett made some of the number. Disgusted has preserved, who at different times at the profession for which he was deprocured fragments from him, and ligned, and having his way in life to fone of confiderable length, upon velo Shape, he attempted to obtain the patronlum, whichi he asserted were parts of age of Mr. Walpole, by offering him the original MSS. Whatever might accounts of painters who had flourished have been the liberality of these gen- at Briftol, and actually transmitted spetlemen in return, it is certain that Chat. cimens of the poems, with an authentic terton was not satisfied with it, for he tale of himself. The poems, however, not only declared to Mr. Thistlethwaite being pronounced fpurious, perhaps too how much he felt disappointed, but, in haftily, by Mr. Mason and Mr. Gray, a letter to his fifter from London, ob- a cool answer was returned, and the inserved, 'As to Mr. Barrett, Mr. Cat. dignant Chatterton baffled in his hopes. cott, Mr. Burgum, &c. &c. they rate On Mr. Walpole, however, he took a literary lumber fo low, that I believe severe revenge, in the character of. The an author in their estimation must be redoubted Baron Otranto, who has poor indeed! But here matters are spent his whole life in conjectures.' otherwise; had Rowley been a Lon- After some judicious and candid obdoner, instead of a Bristowyán, I could fervations on Charterton's misadventure have lived by copying his works. In with the gentleman just mentioned, Dr. my humble opinion I am under very Gregory proceeds to notice the imputafew obligations to any person in Bris- tions of profligacy with which this ill. tol. After his acquairtance, however, fated youth has been loaded, and very with these gentlemen, be assumed to satisfactorily defends him. The effect himself more of importance, and was of a sceptical spirit on his conduct in sanguine on his plan for future life.' life, is placed by the doctor in a judiciFrom them he borrowed books, but his ous light; and to it, along with errone
ous hopes, the pangs of disappointment, was doubtless to conceal from his mofailure of imaginary expedients, and ther his true situation, as some of his piety to his mother, may be fairly alo relations had intercourse with the percribed his melancholy end. An attempt son to whom he had hitherto been a to destroy himself at his master's was lodger. His pen becoming less prothe cause of his being discharged, be ductive than before, he refolved to 'emfore three years of his clerkship were bark on a different plan; and having expired; and though his temper, which acquired some smattering in surgery was naturally impetuous, cherished every and medicine, he solicited Mr. Barreit idea of success in London ; yet in case to recommend him as surgeon's mate to of the reverse, he had resolved on the Africa. This, however, Mr. Barrett pistol. This alternative he mentioned, conscientiously refusing, the last hopes if neither his literary attempts, nor as of Chatterton were blasted. Bereft of a Methodist preacher, fhould succeed. almost every resource, his principal Whether he ever adventured in the lat- concern was to buoy up with encouter capacity does not appear ; but that ragement his mother and sister. This he frequented methodistical conventi- he magnanimously attempted by sending cles, we have, from good authority, them presents, though destitute himself been assured. As a writer for the pub- of a morfel. Such, notwithstanding, lic, he exhibited himself in the charac, was his spirit, that though he had been ter of a politician and a fatyrist, oppos- without food for three days together, he ing and defending each party by turns. refused an invitation to dine. In cirOn the 2 3d of April 1770, to his native cumstances, thus desperate, he had recity (from which he had never been ab- course to his lalt expedient, and though fent more than half a day's walk on a not with a pistol, yet with arsenic, terSunday, he bade a last farewel; and so minated his life on the 25th of August, sanguine was he in prosecuting his plan, after a refidence of four months in Lon. that on the very evening of his arrival don. His body was buried in a shell, in London, he had an interview with in Shoe lane workhouse ground, at the Edmunds, Fell, Hamilton, and Dodfley; parith expence. Before his death, whatfroin all of whom receiving encourage- ever papers he was possessed of, be dement, he wrote to his mother in the stroyed. It is greatly to be lamented, spirit of exultation, and desired her to that at the very time when Chatterton call with his letter on his late master- was in his deepest diftrefs, the late Dr. • Shew him this,' says he, ' or tell him, Fry, of Oxfoid, had actually gone to if I deserve a recommendation, he would Bristol for the purpose of taking him oblige me to give me one if I do not, under his protection. it would be beneath him to take notice "The person of Charterton,” says of me.' His first habitation was at a Dr. Gregory, " like his genius, was plaisterer's in Shoreditch, where he premature ; he had a manliness and digfeemed more than contented, having nity beyond his years, and there was engaged himself to a magazine at four something about him uncommonly preguineas a month, and contracted to poffesfing. His most remarkable fea, write a history of England, Other em- tures were his eyes, which, though grey; ployment crouded on his hands; and commonly piercing ; when he he had not only undertaken to supply was warmed in argument, or otherwise, songs for Ranelagh, Vauxhall, &c. but they sparkled with fire; and one eye, to compile a voluminous history of Lon- it is said, was still more remarkable than don. Yet politics, and on the liberty the other–His genius will be most com. fide, were his favourite employment, pletely estimated from his writings." by means of which, he fought the patronage of Beckford; who died, how
A TOUR THROUGH PART OF FRANCE, cver, with but little befriending him.
&c. IN A SERIES OF LETTERS. 65, His visions of promotion from other
CADELL. 1789. quarters beginning also to vanish, he quitted his lodgings, without assigning THESE Letters, it seems, were at any reasons, and removed to others in first written with a very limited view, Holborn. The real motive of this step for the entertainment of a friend, and to
beguile the hours of a folitary journey, down in my clothes, upon the bed, The multiplicity of works of this kind which was partitioned out of a cabin, is in itself fufficient, almost, to preclude scarce large enough to hold the crew; excellence or novelty: what has been and was almost suffocated with the of fo often feen, and said, must have been fenfive smell that issued from it.-My well faid, and rightly feen, by fome one. attempts to sleep were constantly interYet there is in every man that native rupted by the falutations of the Aleas; vanity, which persuades him, from the who, claiming the territory as facred influence of prejudiced impressions, to themselves, fufficiently puvished me there may be something to interest in his for my intrusion. I felt them repeatown writings. Our author's reflections edly making the grand tour of my body, are just and forcible; but they contain leaving many marks of their excursions Jittle that is new, and less that is truly upon its different parts and promontointeresting. Heis an enthufiaftic admirer ries;-both on the peninsula of my of Rousseau; to whom, and Ermenon- face, the isthmus of my neck, and the ville, a great portion of the book is de- more continental parts of my back and voted. Some of the Romilh ceremonies Moulders. We had not been long out are well described; and a rational dif- at fea, when the captain descended; I tinction is drawn between what is su- observed him strike a light, which he perftition, and what religion ; between was a long while bringing into exiftwhat constitutes the deift and what the ence; when, lighting a candle, he reachdevotee.
ed with it over iny bed as far as he could; The following extracts, however, will in order, as I concluded, to discover if not be found devoid of entertainment. the vessel leaked-he did the same on
the other side, and immediate muttered Dieppe, Aug. 3, 1788. fome oaths. I found my apprehensions “ Nothing can be more ridiculous to beginning to awake,--when, suddenly, an English eye, nor, one would think, the noise of the pump from above, and to the eye of common sense, than the the quantity of water running off the dress of the people of this place. Every deck, so much alarmed me, as to make rank, age and fex, with their hair dressed,
me jump out of my bed, and run up powdered, and toupee'd, from a child stairs. I there learned that the vessel of fix to a man or woman of sixty. Sail. leaked; but could not satisfy myself ors, frisseurs, and gentlemen, all dressed with respect to the danger. I went without distinction. The habits of the down again into the cabin, and was women are still more curious and dit: disturbed every quarter of an hour with gusting than those of the men; they go the working of the pump. I was hearwithout hats; the lappets of their ugly tily glad to welcome the morning light; caps Aying about their ears, and their and arose from my bed at its earliest petticoats scarcely reaching to their peep, more tired than refreshed. knees ;-indeed their ideas of delicacy must be totally different from those of their fex on our fide the water; it is
" We arrived at Carentan about very common to see a woman, or half nine o'clock in the evening;-as the a dozen together, standing in the open diligence did not stop for supper, I ftreets, and without a blush, or the made the best of my way to a miserable leaft confcioufrels of impropriety, per. auberge, with two fellow passengers, forming the offices of nature.” who were Frenchmen. We enquired
for meat, for butter, and for cheese Cherbourg, Aug. 6, 1788. in vain; all we could procure was dry The author's description of his paf- bread. The cuisinier was busy, frying fage from Dieppe to this place is fome. fome pancakes in a corner, which I pę. what curious." I had to spend two titioned most strongly to partake of ;nights and a day on board a miserable his refusal the more heightened my defloop, with only the captain, two fail- fire; but intreaty, promises, and every ors, and a boy, whose faces I had temptation was fruitless, as it was all never before seen, and whose jargon ! they could procure for some guests who could with difficulty understand. I laid were to fup in an adjoining room. The
politeness of my fellow-travellers was " I visited the celebrated Abbage, fatisfied at the excuse; but on my at- founded by William the Conqueror ; tempting to lay hold of one of the pan. it is a very fine edifice, and kept in cakes, the cuisinier removed the didh to wonderful good order. About the midthe farther end of the kitchen.
dle of the altar (which, with the choir, 6. There are certain occasions when is all of marble) is the monument of a man is so much bent upon the acqui- king William, who was here interred. fition.of.a trifle, as to subject himself « I dined, according to my engage: to the most serious consequences, rather ment, with the gentleman to whom I than be disappointed. Such was the had procured a letter; and was much present; and had all the cuisiniers in pleased at meeting with an Englisman, France (of which, by the bye, there is who lived with him. He was an old a tolerable number) been present, I gentleman of family and fortune, from Nould have enjoyed the bustle.' Devonshire, and had formed an attach
“ I at first made proposals to my fel- ment to this Frenchman, to whom he low-travellers to make an open attack was about to leave his fortune. I there upon the pancakes, and to carry them found an instance of one of those extraoff in triumph, by force of arms; but ordinary propensaties of human nature, they lhuddered at the incivility of the that seemed to run counter to truth and thought. I then drew backwards by probability. This old gentleman, who degrees, and watching an opportunity, had been born in the loil of freedom, took out my fork, and stuck it through and had participated in all the advanthe pancakes, at once, all was confu- tages of civilization, elegance, and fion; the master, the mistress, the fille taste, that characterise our happy ifle, de chambre, the cuisinier -all ran to had conceived a strong partiality for feize me: I flew round the kitchen, France. He could say nothing that was taking care to keep aloof till I had de- favourable to England; and so afliduvoured my prey; and never did I eat ous was he in discovering all the errors any thing with greater goût. All the : and blemilies in the manners, laws, diables; and every oath that French in- climate, and constitution of our coungenuity and nonsense could invent, were try, that, at the view he gave of it, poured upon me, and I was at last forced our Situation was truly deplorable : to make my escape to the coach, laugh- our liberty was only a chimera ; our ing moft heartıly at the Stuation I had laws were unequal and absurd; 'our left them in.
manners rude and unpolished ; our posk. I know that this adventure cannot. licy defective; and our religion here be excused on the ground of civility or tical. So nicely had he fifted, through juftice; but fuch confiderations are sel- the grate of prejudice, every circumdom operative, when we are disposed for stance relative to England, that its beauwhat an Englishman would justify by: ties were all loft and overlooked, and the name of fun.
its defects alone preserved. These were
presented to the view of his French com« Caën is thirty-one leagues from panions, who, conceiving them to be Cherbourg; it is the second city in the essence of English manners, bless'd Normandy; the prospect of it, on en- themselves (Heavens bless them!) that: tering, is very pleasant, but the coun. they were- Frenchmen. try
around by no means luxuriant. "[. « On leaving Caën, we foon comwas much surprized, about a mile from menced a conversation, and I found. Caën, at meeting a lady finely dressed, myself in company with characters rariding astride upon an ass, with a fer. ther different. An old man, who had vånt on foot following her: We reached never wandered far beyond the precinets Caën about eleven o'clock : I went to of his native town ; one of a middle the Hotel d'Angleterre, where I found age, who had been great part of his feveral English families; and having time in Italy, and talked the language delivered a letter of recommendation, well; and a young puppy, who was and engaged myself to dinner, I walked' dressed to the utmost extreme of French out to take a survey of the town. frippery. On inquiring the hour, as
foon as the morning opened, the youth alone for mercy. They took poffeffion drew out a watch, by the appendage of of his gold watches, his money, and a long and brilliant chain; but appear- every thing about him, and calling for ing not satisfied with its decision, hè the conducteur, drew a parcel from the drew forth another from his other side; coach, containing calh to the amount of equal richness, with a long equipage of two hundred pounds. This the of gold seals and trinkets. I lifted up wretch had that morning stolen from my eyes, and could not help lamenting his father, and was making off for how soon conveniency and ufe are dif- Paris : the chasseurs svere dispatched torted into extravagance and folly. after him, and the process now was The woman, who made the fourth pass pretty summary; they secured him, senger, was old and talkative, and, and took him away --God knows making only remarks that were frivor whither. lous and triAling, and comments that ..« A little disconcerted at this adwere anticipated and obvious, would venture, we again proceeded forwards ; frequently interrupt a conversation more but the variety of objects, and the reagreeable. The politeness of the men volution of ideas, incidept thereon, obliged them to break off.a discourse, foon removed the impreffion,'. As for however interesting, when addreffed by the Frenchmen, they refumed at once a female, however insignificant. their cheerfulness, and forgot all pity
“ We rode through continued and or detestation towards their former pleasant rows of trees, till we reached companion, in expressions of gallantry, Lisieux, where we dined.
pleafantry, and politenes. « Normandy is divided into seven bio
-- Paris, Aug. 12, 1788. shoprics; namely, Bayeux, Coutances, “ Every spot, as we approached the Lisieux, Evreux, Seez, Auranches, and capital, became more and more inteRouën. It contains seven bailliages, reiting; we saw a valt number of chafour in the Upper, and three in the teaus; some elevated high above us, Lower Normandy, as follow; Rovën, some at a distance, by the side of the Evreux, Caux, Gisori; Caän, Alen- river, and others. Itanding in little çou, and Coutance. ... iflands, encircled with groves of
pop" On returning to the inn, I resumed lars. *f* my seat, and pártook of a desert; when , “ At: length we reached St. Gerg presently a berlin.drove into the yard; main's, which is the Windsor of Paris, and two tallill-looking fellows instantly In point of prospect, the comparison leaped out, with swords in their hands. may possibly hold; but the town is At once, all was mute attention; (every moft miserably, inferior. We passed one knew, besides myself, of what de the palace and gardens, but could have fcription they were ; the door opened, no tolerable view of them. and they entered our room. In such a ! " I could not but look with indig. country as this, every one haş realom to nation upon a place that served as a tremble for his fafety.. Confternation fanctuary, for an English monarch,
the looks of the whole who, -both throughout- bis reign and company; each trait of vivacity was bis exile, was a dependent on the fled; féar, horror, and expectation, French crown. It was here that James hung upon every brow; each, though the First retreated, in the year 1690, unknowing of a cause, fearing for him, after the glorious battle of the Boyne, self. I inttantly caught che tremor, and and ever afterwards held his servile felt myself a good deal alarmed, when one of them fixed his haggard looks in. “ We passed the famous engine at tent upon me (I supposed, afterwards, Marli, invented for the purpose of fupfrom seeing me to be a foreigner). Pre. plying the king's gardens at Versailles, fently they seized on the youth 1 before and Marli with water, which is taken (poke of, and commanded him to fure from the Seine, to the height of lix render every thing he had. Guilt hundred feet, and carried to the dili blushed in his face, and consciouiness tance of fix miles. seemed to take away every power of “ On approaching Paris, we met with defence, or of excule, and he begged a number of ill-shapen monsters, ycleped