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longer fade in the mouth of a Bossuet). As far as I know, neither we, nor you, nor the Italians have the word fade. How have the French found this characteristic word for their nation? Our German tongue, which only begins to be cultivated, has much more conformity with the English than the French.
I wish, sir, I could fulfil your request of bringing you acquainted with so many good people as you think of. Though I love my friends dearly, and though they are good, I have however much to pardon, except in tho single Klopstock alone. He is good, really good, good at the bottom, in all his actions, in all the foldings of his heart. I know him; and sometimes I think if we know others in the same manner, the better we should find them. For it may bo that an action displeases us which would please us, if we knew its true aim and whole extent. No one of my friends is so happy as I am; but no one has had courage to marry as I did. They have married,—as people marry; and they aro happy,—as people are happy. Only one as I may say, my dearest friend, is unhappy, though she had as good a purpose as I myself. She has married in my absence: but had I been present, I might, it may be, have been mistaken in her husband, as well as she.
How long a letter this is again! but I can write no short ones to you. Compliments of my husband, and compliments to all yours, always, even though I should not say it.
The last letter is made touching by the fact that the flattering hopes of the young wife looked to the event that was really to take her from the earthly to the heavenly joy. She died in childbirth.
To Mk. Richabdson.
Hamburg, Aug. 26, 1758.
Why think you, sir, that I answer so late? I will tell you my reasons. . . But before all, how does Miss Patty and howdo yourself? Have not you guessed that I, summing up all my happinesses, and not speaking of children, had none? Yes, sir, this has been my only wish ungratified for these four years. I have been more than once unhappy with disappointments: but yet, thanks to God! I am in full hope to be mother in the month of November. The little preparations for my child and child-bed (and they are so dear to me!) have taken so much time, that I could not answer your letter, nor give you the promised scenes of the Messiah. This is likewise the reason wherefore I am still here, for properly we dwell in Copenhagen. Our staying here is only a visit (but a long one) which wo pay my family. I not boing able to travel yet, my husband has been obliged to make a little voyage alone to Copenhagen. He is yet absent —a cloud over my happiness! Ho will soon return. . . But what does that help? he is yet equally absent! Wo write to each other overy post. . . But what are letters to presence? but I will speak no more of this little cloud; I will only tell my happiness'. but I cannot t«ll how I rejoice! A son of my dear Klopstock! Oh, when shall I have him! It is long since that I have made the remark, that geniuses do not engender geniuses. No children at all, bad sons, or, at the most, lovely daughters, like you and Milton. But a daughter or a son, only with a good heart, without genius, I will nevertheless love dearly.
I think that about this time a nephew of mine will wait on you. His name is von Winlhem, a young rich merchant, who has no bad qualities, and several good, which he has still to cultivate. His mother was, I think, twenty years older than
I, but we other children loved her dearly like a mother. She had an excellent character, but is long dead.
This is no letter, but only a newspaper of your Hamburg daughter. When I have my husband and my child, I will write you more (if Gcd gives mo health and life). You will think that I shall be not a mother only, but nurse also; though tho latter (thank God! that the former is not so too) is quite against fashion and good-breeding, and though nobody can think it possible to be always with the child at home! 5i. Kloi'stock.
From The Accession Of George III. To The French Revolution.—A.d. 1760 To A.d. 1789.
Frederick Prince of Wales, the son of George II., having died in 1751, the Prince's son became King George III. upon the death of his grandfather in October, 17C0. The old king died in his seventyseventh year; his successor, well-disposed but illeducated and without natural ability, was not yet twenty-three. About a year after his accession, the young king niairied the Princess Charlotte of Mecklenburg-Strelitz. John Stuart, Earl of Bute, who had been Lord of the Bedchamber to the Prince Frederick, retained the confidence of the Princess Dowager. He used his influence after the death of George II. to drive William Pitt from office, and reverse his policy, which then triumphed in Europe. Pitt became a private member of the House of Com mons, Bute Secretary of State, and, in May, 1702, First Lord of the Treasuiy. He at once gave places to Scotch friends, and displeased the nation by making a peace with France and Spain, of which the preliminaries were signed at Fontainebleau on the 3rd of November, 1763. Lord Bute in the place of William Pitt, and sudden peace in the place of successful war, were widely unpopular. John Wilkes had entered the House of Commons in 1757 as member for Aylesbury. On the 29th of May, 1762, when the Earl of Bute was nominated First Lord of the Treasury, Tobias Smollett set up a periodical called T/ie Briton, to support his government. John Wilkes, on the following Saturday, the 5th of June, set up another periodical, Tfie North Briton, to reply to it, and to attack Lord Bute. The two papers battled together. The Briton came to an end on the 12th of February, 1763; Lord Bute resigned on the 8th of April• and The North Briton, of which No. 44 had appeared on the 2nd of April, ended its course with the publication of No. 45 on the 23rd of April. That number criticised a King's Speech, and was interpreted as treason by the Government. Wilkes was seized, and committed to the Tower under a general warrant from a Secretary of State. A few days later the Chief Justice of Common Pleas decided that general warrants were illegal, and Wilkes was set free, to the delight of the populace. In November, when the Government caused No. 45 of Tfie North Briton to be burnt by the hangman, that act was the cause of a riot. This is, with the notes that were added when the whole series of papers was re-published as a volume in 1764,
NO. XLV. OF THE NORTH BK1T0N.*
The following advertisement appeared in all the papers on the 13 of April.
The North Briton makes his appeal to the good sense, and to the candour of the English nation. In the present unsettled and fluctuating state of the administration, he is really fearful of falling into involuntary errors, and he does not wish to mislead. All his roasonings havo been built on the strong foundation of facts; and he is not yet informed of the whole interior state of government with such minute precision, ;is now to venture the submitting his crude ideas of the present political crisis to the discerning and impartial public. The Scottish minister has indeed retired. Is His influenco at an end? or does he still govern by the t three wretched tools of his power, who to their indelible infamy, have supported the most odious of his measures, the late ignominious Peace, and the wicked extension of the arbitrary mode of Excise? The Nobth Briton has been steady in his opposition to a single, insolent, incapable, despotic minister; and is equally ready, in the service of his country, to combat the triple-headed, Cerbcrean administration, if the Scot is to assume that motloy form. By Him overy arrangement to this hour has been made, and the notification has been as regularly sent by letter under His Hand. It therefore seems clear to a demonstration, that He intends only to retire into that situation, which He held before He first took the seals; I mean the dictating to every part of the king's administration. The North Briton desires to bo understood, as having pledged himself a firm and intrepid assertor of the rights of his fellowsubjects, and of the liberties of Whigs and Englishmen.
* The passages included within the inverted commas are the only passages to which any objection is made in the UfrORM Atiun tiled in the King's-Bench by the Attorney General against the publisher, Mr. George Kearsley.
t The earls of Egremtnt and Halifax, and Q. GrmvUXt, Esq.
Genus Obatioms alrot, k vehement, cni oppouitar U-nitafcs k numeattndinis. Cicx»a.
"The King's Speech has always been considered by the "legislature, and by the public at large, as the Speech of tie "Minieter.% It has regularly, at the beginning of every "session of parliament, been referred by both houses to list "consideration of a committee, and has been generally esc"vassed with the utmost freedom, when the minister of ifc? "crown has been obnoxious to the nation. The minivers of "this free country, conscious of the undoubted privileges 'A "so spirited a people, and with the terrors of parliament bef ere "their eyes, havo ever been cautious, no less with regard to "tho matter, than to the expressions, of speeches, which they "have advised the sovereign to make from the throne, at th» "opening of each session. They well knew, that an§ hoo&t "house of parliament, true to their trust, could not fail '."detect the fallacious arts, or to remonstrate against tb.-. "daring acts of violence, committed by any minister. Tk»: "Speech at the close of the session has ever been considered "as tho most secure method of promulgating the favourite "court creed among the vulgar; because the parliament. "which is the constitutional guardian of the liberties of titt "people, has in this case no opportunity of remonstraun?. "or of impeaching any wicked servant of the crown.
"This week has given the public the most abandoned in"stance of ministerial effrontery ever attempted to be impose! "on mankind. The minister's speech of last Tuesday, is not "to be paralleled in tho annals of this country*. I am in "doubt, whether tho imposition is greater on the sovereign, "or on the nation. Every friend of his country must lament "that a prince of so many great and amiable qualities, whom "England truly reveres, can be brought to give the sanction "of his sacred name to tho most odious measures, and to the "most unjustifiable, public declarations, from a throne ever "renowned for truth, honour, and unsullied virtue.** I am sure, all foreigners, especially the king of Prussia, will hold the minister in contempt and abhorrence. He has made our sovereign declare, My expectations hate been fully answered h the happy effects which the several allies of my crotcn hare derived from this salutary measure of the definitive Treaty. The powers at war with my good brother the King of Prussia hare been induced to agree to such terms of accommodation as that great prince has approved; and the success which has attended my negotiation, has necessarily and immediately diffused the
t Anno 14 G. n. 1740. Duke of Argylo.
The King's Speech is always in, this House considered as the Speech eft}Ministers. Lottos Debates, vol. 7, p. 413.
When ire take his Majesty's Speech into consideration, though ire saw heard it from his own mouth, yet ire do not consider it as his Xajestft speech, but as the speech of his ministers, p. 425.
Anno 7 Geo. II. 1733. Mr. Shippen.
I believe it leas always been granted, that the speeches from the Throne are the compositions of minister* of slate; upon that supposition we hare altcays thought ourselves at liberty to examine every proposition contained in them; even without doors people are pretty free in their remarks upon them: I believe no Gentleman here is ignorant o/ the reception the speech from the Throne, at the close of last session, met with from the nation in general. Commons Debates, vol. 8, p. 5.
Anno 13 Geo. II. 1739. Mr. Pulteney, now earl of Bath.
His Majesty mentions heats and animosities. Sir, I don't know who dree up this speech; but whoever he was, he should haoe spared that erpresswm: I wish he had drawn a veU over the heat* and animosities that must le owned ONCE subsisted upon this head; for I Am Suke Bone How Subsist, vol. 11, p. 96.
§ The House of Commons in 1715 exhibited, Articles of tmprathsteni of high treason, and other high crimes and misdemeanors, against Robert Earl of OxroRD, and Earl Mortimer. Article 15 is /•>■ having corrupted the sacred fountain of truth, and put falsehoods into the mouth o/Jfaje-ty, in severed speeches made to parliament. Vide Vol. III. and Journals of the House of Commons, vol. 18, p. 214.
Metiinyt of peace through every part of Europe. The infamous fallacy of this whole sentence is apparent to all mankind: for it is known, that the King of Prussia did not barely approve, hut absolutely dictated, as conqueror, every article of the terms of peace. No advantage of any kind has accrued to that magnanimous prince from our negotiation, but he was basely deserted by the Scottish prime minister of England. He was known by every court in Europe to be scarcely on better terms of friendship here, than at Vienna; and he was betrayed by us in the treaty of peace. What a strain of insolence, therefore, is it in a minister to lay claim to what he is conscious all his efforts tended to prevent, and meanly to arrogate to himself a share in the fame and glory of one of the greatest princes the world has ever seen': Tho king of Prussia, however, has gloriously kept all his former conquests, and stipulated security for all his allies, even for the elector of Hanover. I know in what light this great prince is considered in Europe, and in what manner he has been treated here; among other reasons, perhaps, from some contemptuous expressions ho may have used of the Scot: expressions which are every day echoed by the whole body of Englishmen through the southern part of this island.
Tho Preliminary Articles of Pence wero such as have drawn the contempt of mankind on our wretched negotiators. All our most valuable conquests wero agreed to be restored, and the East-India company would have been infallibly ruined by a single article of this fallacious and baneful negotiation. No hireling of the minister has been hardy enough to dispute this; yet the minister himself has made our sovereign declare, the satisfaction which he felt at the approachiny re-establishment of peace upon conditions so honourable to his crown, and so beneficial to his people. As to the entire approbation of parliament, which is so vainly boasted of, the world knows how that was obtained. The large debt on the Civil List, already above half a year in arrear, shews pretty clearly the transactions of the winter. It is, however, remarkable, that tho minister's speech dwells on tho entire approbation given by Parliament to the Preliminary Articles, which I will venture to say, ho must by this time be ashamed of; for he has been brought to confess the total want of that knowledge, accuracy and precision, by which such immense advantages both of trade and territory, were sacrificed to our inveterate enemies. These gross blunders are, indeed, in some measure set right by tho Definitive Treaty; yet, the most important articles, relative to cessions, commerce, and the Fishehy, remain as they were, with respect to the French. The proud and feeble Spaniard too does not ReNounce, but only Desists from all pretensions, which he may have formed, to the right of Fishing—where? only about the island of Newfoundland—till a favourable opportunity arises of insisting on it, there, as well as elsewhere.
"The minister cannot forbear, even in the King's Speech, "insulting us with a dull repetition of tho word aconomy. "I did not expect so soon to have seen that word again, "after it had been so lately exploded, and more than once, "by a most numerous audience, hissed off the stage of our "English theatres. It is held in derision by the voice of the "people, and every tongue loudly proclaims the universal con'• tempt in which these empty professions are held by this "nation. Let tho public be informed of a single instance of "aconomy, except indeed in the household." Is a regiment, which was completed as to its compliment of officers on the Tuesday, and broke on tho Thursday, a proof of aconomy f Is the pay of the Scottish Master Elliot to be voted by an English parliament, under the head of aconomy! Is this, among a thousand others, one of the convincing proofs of a. firm resolution to form government on a plan of strict aconomy? Is it not notorious, that in the reduction of the army, not the
least attention has been paid to it. Many unnecessary expenses have been incurred, only to increase the power of the crown, that is, to create more lucrative jobs for the creatures of the minister f The staff indeed is broke, but the discerning part of mankind immediately comprehended the mean subterfuge, and resented tho indignity put upon so brave an officer, as marshal Liyonier. That step was taken to give the whole power of the army to the crown, that is, to the minister. Lord Liyonier is now no longer at the head of the army; but lord Bute in effect is: I mean that every preferment given by the crown will be found still to be obtained by At» enormous influence, and to be bestowed only on the creatures of the Scottish faction. The nation is still in the same deplorable state, while he govorns, and can make the tools of his power pursue the same odious measures. Such a retreat, as he intends, can only mean that personal indemnity, which, I hope, guilt will never find from an injured nation. The negotiations of the late inglorious peace, and the excise, will haunt him, wherever he goes, and the terrors of the just resentment, which he must be to meet from a brave and insulted people, and which must finally crush him, will be for ever before his eyes.
"In vain will such a minister, or the foul dregs of his "power, the tools of corruption and despotism, preach up "in tlte speech that spirit of concord, and that obedience to the "laws, which is essential to yood order. They have sent the "spirit of discord through the land, and I will prophecy, that "it will never be extinguished, but by the extinction of their "power. Is the spirit of concord to go hand in hand with tho "Peace and Excise thro' this nation? Is it to be expected "between an insolent Exciseman, and a peer, gentleman, free"holder, or farmer, whose private houses are now made liable "to be entered and searched at pleasure? Gloucestershire, "Herefordshire, and in general all the Cyder countries, are "not surely the several counties which are alluded to in tho "speech. Tho spirit of concord hath not gone forth among "them; but the spirit of liberty has, and a noble opposition "has been given to the wicked instruments of oppression. "A nation as sensible as the English, will see that a spirit "of concord, when they are oppressed, means a tame submis"sion to injury, and that a spirit of liberty ought then to "arise, and I am sure ever will, in proportion to the weight "of the grievance they feel. Every legal attempt of a contrary "tendency to the spirit of concord will be deemed a j ustifiable "resistance, warranted by the spirit of the English constitution. "A despotic minister will always endeavour to dazzlo his "prince with high-flown ideas of the prerogative and honour "of the crown, which the minister will make a parado of "firmly maintaining. I wish as much as any man in tho "kingdom to sec the Itonour of the crown maintained in a "manner truly becoming Royalty. I lament to see it sunk "even to prostitution. What a shame was it to sec the "security of this country, in point of military force, compli"mented away, contrary to the opinion of Royalty itself, and "sacrificed to the prejudices and to the ignorance of a set of "people, the most unfit from every consideration to be con"suited on a matter relative to the security of the house of "Hanover t" I wish to see the honour of the crown religiously asserted with regard to our allies, and the dignity of it scrupulously maintained with regard to foreign princes. Is it possible such an indignity can have happened, such a sacrifice of the honour of the crown of England, as that a minister should already have kissed his majesty's hand on being appointed to the most insolent and ungrateful court in the world, without a previous assurance of that reciprocal nomination which the meanest court in Europe would insist upon, before she proceeded to an act otherwise so derogatory to her honour? But Slectoral Policy has ever been obsequious to the court of Vienna, and forgets the insolence with which count Colloredo left England. Upon a principle of dignity and asconomy, lord Stonnont, a Scottish peer of tho loyal house of Murray, kissed his majesty's hand, I think, on Wednesday in the Easter week; but this ignominious act has not yet disgraced the nation in the London Gazette. The ministry arc not ashamed of doing the thing in private; they are only afraid of the publication. Was it a tender regard for the honour of the late king, or of his present majesty, that invited to court lord George Sackville, in these first days of Peace, to share in tho general satisfaction, which all good courtiers received in the indignity offered to lord Ligonier, and on the
advancement of ?Was this to shew princely gratitude
to tho eminent services of the accomplished general of the house of Brunsicic, who has had so great a share in rescuing Europe from the yoke of Frame; and whoso nephew we hope soon to sec made happy in the possession of the most amiable princess in the world? Or, is it meant to assert the honour of the crown only against the united wishes of a loyal and affectionate people, founded in a happy experience of the talents, ability, integrity, and virtue of those, who have had the glory of redeoming their country from bondage and ruin, in order to support, by every art of corruption and intimidation, a weak, disjointed, incapable set of—I will call them any thing but ministers—by whom tho Favourite still meditates to rule this kingdom with a rod of iron.
Tho Stuart line has ever been intoxicated with the slavish doctrines of the absolute, independent, unlimited power of the crown. Some of that lino were so weakly advised, as to endeavour to reduce them into practice: but tho English nation was too spirited to suffer the least encroachment on tho ancient liberties of this kingdom. "Tho King of England "is only tho* first magistrate of this country; but is invested "by law with tho whole executivo power. He is, however, "responsible to his people for tho due execution of the royal "functions, in tho choico of ministers, &c. equally with tho "meanest of his subjects in his particular duty." Tho personal character of our present amiable sovereign makes us easy and happy that so great a power is lodged in Buch hands; but the favourite has given too just cause for him to escapo tho general odium. The prerogative of the crown is to exert tho constitutional powers entrusted to it in a way, not of blind favour and partiality, but of wisdom and judgment. This is tho spirit of our constitution. The people too have their prerogative, and, I hope, tho fine words of Dkydkn will bo engraven on our hearts,
Freedom is the English subject's Prerogative.
It was in the first year of the reign of George III. that Rousseau, in France, published his "Nouvelle Heloise,"and in 1762 appeared his "Contrat Social" and his " Eniile." These books energetically represented one side of the reaction that grew yearly in power until, in 1789, the great French Revolution gave warning to Europe of the force it had acquired. Impatience of authority supjwrted by and supporting dead forms of social, political, and even religious life, became in fervid minds an imjjatience of all authority as force from without controlling impulses of nature from within. An unsubstantial sentiment served
• In the first speech of James I. to his English parliament, March 22, 1603, are the following words, That I am a SEKVANT a most true-I will never be ashamed to confess it. Jtfy jtrincipal honour, (o be the GREAT SEKVANT of the commonwealth.. Journals of the House of Commons, Vol. I. p. 1*5.
for the life of no small part of literature. Its origin was a disease of the soul in men of genius thu became epidemic, spread like the Black Death in the Middle Ages, prostrated the weak minds, and laid hold especially upon the young. Like epidemics of a physical disease, its cause was to be found in unwholesome conditions of life. The cleverest man in England who became a victim to this epidemic— a clever man morally weak—was Laurence Sterne, whose " Sentimental Journey" appeared in the year of his death, 1768, and is clearly a product of those tendencies of thought which had been represented partly by the writings of Rousseau. Sterne's "Tristram Shandy" was appearing in the first year of the reign of George III., and in its whimsical irregularities Sterne followed a rule of his time by defying rule.
Laurence Sterne was born in Clonmel Barracks on the 24th of November, 1713. Roger, his father, was a lieutenant in the 34th Foot, and grandson to Richard Sterne, who died Archbishop of York in 1683. Laurence's grandfather had been eldest son of the archbishop, a Simon Sterne, who married Mary Jaques, heiress of Elvington, five miles from York. Roger Sterne was the seventh child of Simon. His eldest brother, Richard, was heir of Elvington, and lived at Woodhouse, also his property, a mile and a half out of Halifax. The second son of the family was Jaques Sterne, who throve by church interest, and died an archdeacon in 1759. In 1711, when he was with the army in Flanders, Roger Sterne, then an ensign with 3s. 2£d. a day for his pay, married Agnes, widow of Captain Hebert, and daughter of an Irish army sutler. The first child of the marriage, Mary, was bom at Lisle in July, 1712. Then followed Laurence, in November, 1713, when the regiment was in barracks at Clonmel. It was the year of the Peace of Utrecht. All regiments raised since the Peace of Ryswick, in 1697, except two, were broken. Roger Sterne's regiment was disbanded, and he went home with his two babies to Yorkshire. After a few months the regiment was established again, and Ensign Sterne, with his family, joined it at Dublin in the winter of 1714. Presently they moved with the regiment to Exeter. A thiid child, named Joram, was born. After about a year at Exeter, they returned to Dublin, and Roger Sterne there ceasing to live in barrack, furnished ft house, and occupied it three years. He was then ordered to join the Vigo expedition. Joram died of small-pox; a girl, Anne, was born. The family ''as for a time in the Isle of Wight, then went to Wicklow Barracks, where, in 1720, a son, Devisher, was born. For six months the family lived with a relation of Mrs. Sterne's who was vicar of Anamoe, seven miles from Wicklow. In 1721 they were for a year in Dublin Barracks, where the child Anne died. In 1724 a Catherine was bom, who survived, with Mary and Laurence, the youngest and two eldest. Mary afterwards married a scamp, of whom her brother tells that he "used her unmercifully, spent his subsistence, became a bankrupt, and left my poor sister to shift for herself, which she w*3 able to do but for a few months; for she went to » friend's house in the country, and died of a broken
heart;" that is to say, died unhappy. In 1725 Ensign Sterne got leave of absence to take his son Laurence, then eleven or twelve years old, to school at Halifax, near which town Richard, the eldest of Laurence's uncles, lived at Woodhouse as head of the family, a gentleman of means. In 1727 Laurence's father went to Jamaica, and his son saw him no more. While in Jamaica he died of yellow fever, in March, 1731. In 1732 Laurence's uncle Richard sent him, aged eighteen or nineteen, to Jesus College, Cambridge, as a sizar. While at Cambridge there was the first distinct evidence of that disease of the lungs which thenceforth sapped his life. He was small and thin, he spat blood at college, and a cough afterwards stuck by him. Having taken his B.A. degree, Laurence Sterne was ordained deacon in 1736, priest in August, 1738, and in the same month, through family influence, as great-grandson of a preceding Archbishop of York, he obtained the vicarage of Sutton-on-the-Forest, which was in the gift of the Archbishop of that day. His uncle Jaques was then Canon Residentiary, Prebendary, and Precentor of York Minster, and held two small Yorkshire rectories. He had at York a bachelor house in the Minster Yard, and Laurence's uncle Richard had also a house in Castlegate. In 1740 Laurence Sterne graduated as M.A., and in 1741, after two years' courtship, he married Elizabeth, daughter of the Rev. Mr. Lumley, rector of Bedal, Staffordshire. Sterne was then in his twentyeighth year. His bride had been lodging in York, and was in ill-health. In the same year he obtained one of the twenty-six prebends in York Minster, with £40 a year and a house in Stonegate. His wife had also £40 a year, and a friend with the gift of York preferment in his power. Sterne had a taste for playing the bass viol, and for drawing. In 1743 came the gift from his wife's friend of the prebendal stall and living of Stillington, worth about £50 a year. In 1745 a first daughter was born, and named Lydia. She was born and baptised on the 1st of October, and died on the 2nd. Laurence Sterne had genius with a weakness of character, due partly to a shifty home-life and imperfect training in his earlier years, and partly to the weakness of his body. He yielded himself to the influences of his time, and in this earlier part of his career, when there was open way for him in the Church, one of his chief friends was Hall Stevenson, of Skelton Castle, near Guisbro', who in the name of wit defied decency. Sterne's letters show that he weakly accommodated his own wit to the tone of his friend's. It was the price paid for the flattery he prized. Sterne's mother, who kept a school, was ruined by the extravagance of her daughter Catherine, and saved from gaol by a subscription among parents of pupils. Sterne was estranged from his sister. In December, 1747, a daughter was again born to Sterne, and again named Lydia. She was his only child, and she survived him. In 1758 Sterne's mother was at York, and he was helping to arrange her affairs. At the same time he was weakly sentimentalising with a Miss Catherine de Fourmentelle. His was a very weak form of the sentimental epidemic, as writing of his like this may show: "Whenever it falls out that an
earthly goddess is so much this and that and t'other, that I cannot eat my breakfast for her, and that she careth not three-halfpence whether I eat any breakfast or no, curse on her; and so I send her to Tartary, and from Tartary to Terra del Fuego, <fec. But as the heart is tender, and the passions in those tides ebb and flow ten times in a minute, I instantly bring her back again." In 1758, also, there broke out at York a controversy as to the right of a Dr. Topham's son to the inheritance of a patent office in the cathedral. The Rev. Laurence Sterne took part in the controversy with a humorous pamphlet that figured the office in question as "The Good Warm Watch-coat." It was published in 1759. In the same year he had begun "Tristram Shandy." On the 77th page of the first volume thereof he speaks of a remark as struck out "on this very rainy day, March 26, 1759, between nine and ten in the morning." At the end of December, 1759, Sterne's age then being 46, the first section of "Tristram Shandy " was published at York in two volumes for five shillings. There was much local satire, and in a couple of days two hundred copies were sold in the town. Sterne sent copies to London, took what measures he could to make his book known to the larger public, and in March, 1760, went himself to London to look after it. He took lodgings in Pall Mall, which he described as "the genteelest in town," and wrote letters to Miss Fourmentelle as "Dear, dear Jenny." "Tristram Shandy" rose into fame, and gave its name to a new game of cards. Sterne was to be seen at Ranelagh Gardens, sat for his portrait to Sir Joshua Reynolds, made friendly acquaintance with David Garrick, and with Warburton, Bishop of Gloucester, who called him the English Rabelaia The poet Gray wrote "one is invited to dinner where he dines a fortnight beforehand." But Oliver Goldsmith, who was then writing the "Citizen of the World," condemned the large alloy of base metal that is in "Tristram Shandy " blended with the true. Many of Sterne's readers in those days enjoyed as wit what Goldsmith rightly described as indecency and pertness, and it still needs more thought than commonly goes with the act of reading to distinguish the wheat from the chaff where both abound. Sterne failed through weakness of character to make the best use of his talent. Through the same weakness of character his life became a wreck. He craved for the wretched flatteries of the frivolous, sunk to the position of a piece of fashionable dinner furniture, and having taken to himself out of Hamlet the name of Yorick, and written a fancy sketch of himself under that name in his first volumes of "Tristram Shandy," he announced, together with the second edition of those volumes, "The Sermons of Mr. Yorick." This is Sterne's suggestion of an ideal for himself as—
Yorick was this parson's name, and what is very remarkable in it, (as appears from a most anticnt account of the family wrote upon strong vellum, and now in perfect preservation) it had been exactly so spelt for near,—I was within an ace of saying, nine hundred years;—but I would not