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continuance, the Lords were very well used Commons was taken up for the most part to the King's presence, and sent the Lord yesterday in calling over their House, and Steward and Lord Chamberlain to him, to having ordered a letter to be drawn up from know when they might wait as a house on the Speaker to every place for which there is him, to render their humble thanks for the any defaulter, to signify the absence of their honor he did them. The hour was appointed members; and a solemn letter is accordingly them, and they thanked him; and he took preparing, to be signed by the Speaker. it well. So this matter, of such importance This is thought a sufficient punishment for on all great occasions, seems riveted to them anyj modest man; nevertheless, if they shall and us for the future, and to all posterity. not come up hereupon, there is a further .... The King has ever since continued his severity reserved." These reserved severities, session among them, and says it is better than however, could be rarely put in practice, so going to a play.”
that the absenteeism of honorable gentlemen From this, one can perceive that, whatever was for a long time more or less a standing might be his faults, Charles II. was a plea- hindrance to legislation. sant fellow. Of another kind of pleasantry, Among the other unpleasant perplexities arising out of the peculiar relations between incident to the House of Commons in those members of Parliament and their constituen- days, were the frequent disputes into which cies, we obtain some carious glimpses from they were in the habit of falling with the these letters. On more than one occasion it House of Lords. The following is an amusappears that members had sued their constitu- ing complication of their relations, and must ents for arrears of pay; and that others had have been extremely difficult of adjustment: threatened to do the like, unless the said con * I have no more time than to tell
that stituents would agree to re-elect them at the the Lords having judged and fined the East next election. To-day,” says Marvell, (in India Company, as we think illegally, upon a letter dated March 3, 1676–7,) “ Sir Har the petition of one Skyner, a merchant, and bottle Grimstone, Master of the Rolls, moved they petitioning us for redress, we have imfor a bill to be brought in, to indemnify all prisoned him that petitioned them, and they counties, cities, and boroughs, for the wages have imprisoned several of those that petidue to their members for the time past, which tioned us." • It is,” adds Marvell, “ a busiwas introduced by him upon very good rea ness of high and dangerous consequence," as
son, both because of the poverty of many indeed it manifestly was, though nothing very Et people not able to supply so long an arrear,
serious resulted. especially new taxes now coming upon them, As a curious example of the odd accidents and also because Sir John Shaw, the Recor- on which important events may sometimes der of Colchester, had sued the town for his depend, the following singular anecdote may wages , several other members also having, be cited. Sir G. Carteret had been charged it seems, threatened their boroughs to do the with embezzlement of public money,
« The same, unless they should choose them upon House,” says Marvell, “ dividing upon the another election to Parliament.”. We gather question, the ayes went out, and wondered further, that electors of those days id not why they were kept out so extraordinary a pride themselves very much upon the suffrage, time; the ages proved 138, and the noes and that there were even instances of unpat- 129; and the reason of the long stay then
riotic boroughs begging to be disfranchised, appeared. The tellers for the ayes chanced us to escape the burdensome honor of sending to be very ill reckoners, so that they were Serbest representatives !
forced to tell several times over in the house; In such a state of things, it was hardly to and when at last the tellers for the ayes be expected that the attendance of members would have agreed the noes to be 142, the should be very prompt or punctual. Sueh, noes would needs say that they were 143; indeed, was the difficulty of obtaining a “full whereupon those for the ayes would tell once house” that it was deemed advisable at varions more, and then found the noes to be indeed times to threaten severe penalties against the but 129, and the ages then coming in proved absentees. In one of these letters we are told, to be 138; whereas if the noes had been * The House was called yesterday, and gave content with the first error of the tellers, Sir defaulters a fortnight's time, by which, if they George had been quit upon that observado not come up, they may expect the greatest tion.'* severity.” In another,_" The House of It
there is no evidence that Mar.
* Ibid. pp. 417-419. VOL XXV. NO. II.
* Letters, pp. 125, 126.
vell ever spoke in Parliament. He was nearly | last discovered it on a second floor, in a dark twenty years a member, and all the time a court communicating with the Strand. It is silent one. His influence in the House, said, that in groping up the narrow staircase, nevertheless, seems to have been more than he stumbled against the door of the apartusually considerable. The strong and decided ment, which, flying open, revealed to him views which he took on public affairs, the the patriot writing at his desk. A little sursevere, satirical things which he was con prised, Marvell asked his lordship, with a stantly uttering in conversation, or publishing smile, if he had not missed his way. “No, in pamphlets and addresses, and the stedfast said Danby, in courtly phraseology ; "No; and well-known integrity by which his entire not since I have succeeded in finding Mr. conduct was distinguished, rendered him a Marvell." He then proceeded to inform formidable opponent to the government, and him that he came with a message from the even gained for him the secret respect of King, who was impressed with a deep sense some of the court party. Prince Rupert of his merits, and was anxious to serve him. honored him with his friendship, and is said Marvell replied pleasantly, “that his majesty to have remained attached to him when “the had it not in his power to serve him." As rest of the party had honored bim by their Danby pressed him seriously, he told his hatred,” and to have occasionally visited him lordship at length that he knew well enough at his lodgings. When he voted on Marvell’s that he who accepts court favors is naturally side of the House, as not unfrequently hap- expected to vote in conformity with its interpened, it used to be said that he had been ests. On his lordship's saying "that his closeted “with his tutor." Our patriot, majesty only desired to know whether there however, was nowise without his enemies was any place at court which he would acas indeed every good man necessarily lives cept," the patriot replied, “ that he could in antagonism with the bad ; and there are accept nothing with honor ; for either he no relations hitherto discovered under which must treat the King with ingratitude by rethey can with any permanence be amicably fusing compliance with court measures, or be associated. We find it said that on more a traitor to his country by yielding to them." than one occasion, Marvell was threatened The only favor, therefore, he begged of his with assassination; so that in spite of con- majesty, was to esteem him as a loyal subscious virtue he had need of walking guard- ject, and truer to his actual interests in reedly, and with the strictest circumspection. fusing his offers than he could be by accept
Of his severe probity, his utter inaccessi- ing them. His lordship having exhausted bility to bribery, and the manifold forms of this species of persuasion, had recourse to flattery and temptation which the governing what he probably considered more formidapowers employed against him, there are ble logic, and told him that his majesty remany substantial evidences. The account of quested his acceptance of a thousand pounds. his memorable interview with the Lord Trea- But this too was firmly and respectfully resurer Danby, though it has often been re-jected, though, as it is related, soon after peated, and is, perhaps, generally familiar to Danby left him, Marvell was compelled to historical readers, cannot properly be omitted borrow a guinea from a friend, to meet his in any relation having reference to Marvell's immediate expenses. acts and character. It appears that he once It has been already hinted, that though no spent an evening at Court, and very highly orator in Parliament, Marvell was moderately delighted the "merry monarch" by bis wit ready with his pen; and there can be no one at and other personal accomplishments. In all acquainted with English literature, who this there is nothing to astonish us; as it is does not know that he was one of the most popknown that Charles enjoyed wit and lively | ular writers of his age. Most of his works, conversation almost more th anything. however, were written for temporary purTo his excessive admiration of wit and droll- poses, and have accordingly in great part ery he was indeed continually sacrificing his passed out of mind with the circumstances royal dignity. However, one morning after that occasioned them. The production on the above-mentioned interview, he sent Dan- which his fame as an author may be said by to wait on our patriot with a special mes. principally to rest, is the Rehearsal Transsage of regard. Charles perhaps might prosed-a piece written in a controversy with think that with a fellow of such humor it Dr. Samuel Parker, afterwards Bishop of would not be impossible to come to an un. Oxford, a splendid impersonation of the derstanding. His lordship had some diffi- High-Church militant. Parker, in a preface oulty in finding Marvell's residence, but at I to a posthumous work of Archbishop Bram
ball's, wbich appeared in 1672, had displayed side." To give a faint notion of the ridicu-
“This gentleman, as I have heard, after he men of the age. The preface was anony- had read Don Quixote, and the Bible, besides mous, but the author was not on that ac such school-books as were necessary for bis count unknown-his style, perhaps, exposing age, was sent early to the university, and there him. As a champion for tolerance, Marvell / studied hard, and in a short time became a took the matter up;'and as his adversary competent rhetoriciạn, and no ill disputant. presented himself without. a name, he face. He had learned how to erect a thesis, and to tiously dubbed him · Mr. Bayes,” the name defend it pro and con, with a serviceable disunder which the Duke of Buckingham had tinction. lately ridiculed Dryden in the famous play of And so, thinking himself now ripe and qualithe Rehearsal. The title of Marvell's book fied for the greatest undertakings and highest was, indeed, suggested by a scene in the fortune, he therefore exchanged the narrowsame play--that in which Bayes states the ness of the university for the town ; but manner in which he manufactured his dra- coming out of the confinement of the square matic pieces. The passage is as follows:- cap and the quadrangle into the open air, the
“ Bayes.—Why, sir, my first rule is the world began to turn round with him, which rule of transversion, or regula dupler, - be imagined, though it were his own giddichanging verse into prose, or prose into ness, to be nothing less than the quadrature verse, alternative as you please.'
of the circle. This accident concurring so “ Smith.--Well, but how is this done by happily to increase the good opinion which rule, sir?"
he naturally had of himself, he thenceforward "Bayes-Why thus, sir ; nothing so easy applied to gain a like reputation with others. when understood. I take a book in my hand, He followed the town life, haunted the best either at home or elsewhere, for that is all companies; and to polish himself from any one : if there be any wit in it, (as there is no pedantic roughness, he read and saw the book but has some,) I transverse it; that is, plays with much care, and more proficiency. if it be prose, put it into verse, (but that than most of the auditory. But all this while takes up some time,) and if it be verse, put he forgot not the main chance; but hearing it into prose."
of a vacancy with a nobleman, he clapped in, “ Johnson. -- Methinks, Mr. Bayes, that and easily obtained to be his chaplain : from putting verse into prose shall be called trans- that day you may take the date of his preprosing.'
ferments and his ruin ;. for having soon “ Bayes.--By my troth, sir, 'tis a very wrought himself dexterously into his patron's good notion, and hereafter it shall be so. favor, by short graces and sermons, and a
Seizing upon this conceit, Marvell called mimical way of drolling upon the Puritans, bis work the Rehearsal Transprosed; and which he knew would take both at chapel the ridicule which he heaped on Parker was and at table, he gained a great authority so unsparing and complete, that it is said likewise among all the domestics. They all even the King and his courtiers could not listened to him as an oracle ; and they allowed help laughing at him. The success of the him, by common consent, to have not only work was signal, immediate, and universal. all the divinity, but more wit, too, than all Bishop Burnet says, in allusion to it, with an the rest of the family put together. .... evident enjoyment of the humiliation of the Nothing now must serve him, but he most victim: “After Parker had for some years be a madman in print, and write a book of entertained the nation with several virulent Ecclesiastical Polity. There he distributes all books, be was attacked by the liveliest droll the territories of conscience into the Prince's of the age, who wrote in a burlesque strain, province, and makes the Hierarchy to be but with 50 peculiar and entertaining a con- but Bishops of the air ; and talks at such an duct, that, from the King down to the trades- extravagant rate in things of higher concernman, his books were read with pleasure ; that ment, that the reader will avow that in the not only humbled Parker, but the whole whole discourse he had not one lucid interparty; for the author of the Rehearsal Trans- val.”* prosed had all the men of wit (or, as the French phrase it, all the laughers) on his * Rehearsal Transprosed, vol. i. pp. 62–69.
The Rehearsal soon elicited several replies ; | characterized by much of the coarseness some of them written in awkward imitation which was so prevalent in that age, and from of Marvell's style of banter, and all now de which Marvell was by no means free; though servedly forgotten. Parker himself remained his spirit was far, from partaking of the for a long while silent, but at length came malevolence of ordinary satirists.* It is forth with a Reproof of the Rehearsal Trans- not to be inferred, however, that the merit of prosed, wherein he urged the Government to the Rehearsal Transprosed consists solely in crush Marvell as a pestilent wit," and stig-wit and banter. Amidst all its ludicrous matized him as “the servant of Cromwell, levities, there is als D’Israeli has remarked, and the friend of Milton." It was but natu “a vehemence of solemn reproof, and an ral that Marvell should retort, and he accord- eloquence of invective, that awes one with ingly wrote and published what is called the the spirit of the modern dunius;" and, as "second part” of the Rehearsal. He was, the critic above quoted subjoins, “there are moreover, constrained to it by a pithy anony- many passages of very powerful reasoning, mous epistle, signed “T. G.,” left for him at in advocacy of truths then but ill understood, a friend's house, and concluding with these and of rights which had been shamefully words,-" If thou darest to print any lie or violated.” libel against Dr. Parker, by the eternal God, About three years after the publication of I will cut thy throat!” A man of Marvell's the second part of the Rehearsal, Marvell's boldness was not to be intimidated, and he “chivalrous love of justice” impelled him straightway printed this pleasant document into another controversy. In 1675, Dr. in the title-page of his reply. To this pub- Croft, Bishop of Hereford, had published a lication Parker attempted no rejoinder. work entitled, " The Naked Truth; or, the Anthony Wood informs us that the said true state of the Primitive Church ; by a Parker "judged it more prudent to lay down humble Moderator.” This work enjoined on the cudgels, than to enter the lists again with all religious parties the unwelcome duties of an untowardly combatant, so hugely well charity and forbearance; but as it especially versed and experienced in the then newly-exposed the danger and folly of enforcing a refined art, though much in mode and fashion minute uniformity, such as was then so genever since, of sporting and jeering buffoonery. erally demanded by the High-Chureh intolIt was generally thought, however, by many erants, it could not be suffered to pass unof those who were otherwise favorers of challenged by the leaders and guides of that Parker's cause, that the victory lay on Mar trenchant faction. It was accordingly attackvell's side, and it wrought this good effect ed, with a considerable display of petulance, on Parker, that for ever after it took down by Dr. Francis Turner, Master of St. Jobn's his great spirit.” Burnet tells us further, College, Cambridge, in a pamphlet entitled, that he « withdrew from the town, and “ Animadversions on the Naked Truth." ceased writing for some years.'
Provoked by the unfairness and asperity of No adequate notion of this, the most con this production, our satirist replied to it in siderable and curious of Marvell's writings, another pamphlet, which he entitled, “Mr. could be given by any such selection of ex- Smirke ; or, the Divine in Mode.” He here tracts as could be inserted in these pages. fits the object of his banter with a characte IndI it would be very difficult, even without of Etheredge's “ Man in Mode," as he the most copious quotations, to convey any: had before fitied Parker with one from thing like the impression which the work Buckingham's “ Rehearsal.” The merits itself must have originally produced. As a and defects of this performance are considwriter in the Edinburgh Review has said, ered to be of much the same order as those of • The allusions are often so obscure—the wit his former work, though it is, perhaps, someof one page is so dependent on that of what less disfigured by vehemence and coarseanother--the humor and pleasantry are so On Dr. Croft's pamphlet he has one continuous—and the character of the work remark which beautifully expresses his adfrom its very nature is so excursive, that its miration of the work, and indicates a feeling merits can be fully appreciated only on a of which many persons must have been conregular perusa!.” There are other reasons scious, when perusing other works of eminent also why any lengthened citations cannot be superiority," It is a book of that kind," given. “ The work has faults which would, says he," that no Christian can persue within innumerable cases, disguise its real merits out wishing himself to have been the author, from modern readers, or rather altogether deter them from giving it a reading. It is
* Ed. Rev, No. 159
and almost imagining that he is so: the con was the fittest time for business; and truly
I ceptions therein being of so eternal an idea, thought so, till my lord-treasurer assured me that every man finds it to be but a copy of the spring was the best season for salads and the original in his own mind."
subsidies. . . Some of you, perhaps, will Two years after the appearance of the think it dangerous to make me too rich ; but "Divine in Mode,"-namely, in 1677, I do not fear it, for I promise you faithfully, Marvell published his last controversial piece, whatever you give me, I will always want; elicited, like the rest, by his disinterested love and although in other things my word may of fairness. It was a defence of the celebra- be thought a slender authority, yet in that, ted John Howe, whose conciliatory tract on you may rely on, I will never break it. the “ Divine Prescience” had been rudely I can bear my straits with patience: but my assailed by three several antagonists. This lord-treasurer does protest to me, that the little volume is not included in any edition revenue, as it now stands, will not serve him of Marvell's works, and is now extremely and me too. One of us must pinch for it, if scarce, it being, presumably, unknown to you do not help me. .i. What shall we any of his biographers. We are indebted to do for ships then? I hint this to you, it the writer in the “ Edinburgh" before quoted being your business, not mine. I know by for drawing attention to its existence. experience I can live without ships. I lived
Marvell's latest work of any extent was ten years abroad without, and never had my entitled, “An Account of the Growth of health better in my life; but how you will be Popery and Arbitrary Government in Eng without, I will leave to yourselves to judge, land.' This appeared in 1678. It was con and therefore hint this only by-the-by. I strued by the Government into a libel,” | don't insist upon it. There is another thing and a reward was offered for the discovery I must press more earnestly, and that is this : of the author. Marvell, however, does not -it seems a good part of my revenue will appear to have been alarmed by these pro- expire in two or three years, except you will ceedings, nor to have been any way called to be pleased to continue it. I have to say for account for the publication. He thus humor- it,-Pray, why did you give me so much as ously alludes to the subject in a private let you have done, unless you resolve to give on ter, written some months after the work was as fast as I call for it? The nation hates you published :-" There came out about Christ- already for giving so much, and I will hate mas last, here, a large book concerning the you too, if you do not give me more. So growth of Popery and Arbitrary Government. ihat, if you do not stick to me, you will not There have been great rewards offered .i have a friend in England. . . . Therefore, private, and considerable in the Gazette, t look to it, and take notice, that if you do not any one who could inform of the author or make me rich enough to undo you, it shall printer, but not yet discovered.' Three or lie at your door. For my part, I wash my four printed books since have described, as hands on it. ... I have converted my natunear as it was proper to go, (the man being ral sons from Popery. ... 'Twould do one's a Member of Parliament,) Mr. Marvell to heart good to hear how prettily George can have been the author ; but, if he had, surely read already in the Psalter. They are all be should not have escaped being questioned fine children, God bless 'em, and so like me in Parliament or some other place.
in their understandings! But, as I was say. During the latter years of his life, Marvelling, I have, to please you, given a pension to published several other political pamphlets, your favorite, my Lord Lauderdale, not so which, though now forgotten, are considered much that I thought he wanted it, as that to have been influential at the time in un- you would take it kindly. . . . I know not, masking corruptivn, and rousing the nation for my part, what factious men would have, to a consciousness of its political degrada- but this I am sure of, my predecessors never tion. Among these is a clever parody on the did anything like this, to gain the good-will speeches of Charles II., in which the flip of their subjects. So much for your religion ; pancy and easy impudence of those singular and now for your property. ... I must now specimens of royal eloquence are said to be acquaint you, that by my lord-treasurer's happily mimicked, and scarcely, if in any de- advice, I have made a considerable retrenchgree, caricatured. Let us, for a few sentences, ment upon my expenses in candles and charhear the witty Charles, as our càustic author coal, and do not intend to stop, but will, with represents him speaking :
your help, look into the late embezzlements * I told you at our last meeting, the winter of my dripping-pans and kitchen-stuff, of