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Bolingbroke;' the animosity between Oxford and him was too rankling a wound to endure being tickled. But all was in vain ; and at length, tired of this scene of murmuring and discontent, quarrel, misunderstanding, and hatred, the Dean, who was almost the only common friend who laboured to compose these differences, made a final effort, of which the result shall be given in his own words to Lord Oxford, son of the statesman: “ When I returned to England, I found their quarrels and coldness increased. I laboured to reconcile them as much as I was able; I contrived to bring them to my Lord Masham's, at St James's. My Lord and Lady Masham left us together. I expostulated with them both, but could not find any good consequences.

I was to go to Windsor next day with my lord-treasurer : I pretended business that pre


1 [The concluding verses are

“ Come, courtiers ; every man his stick!
Lord-treasurer, for once be quick:
And that they may the closer cling,
Take your blue ribbon for a string.
Come, trimming Harcourt, 2 bring your mace;
And squeeze in it, or quit your place :
Despatch, or else that rascal Northey, 3
Will undertake to do it for thee :
And be assured, the court will find him
Prepared to leap o'er sticks, or bind them.
To make the bundle strong and safe,
Great Ormond lend thy general's staff!
And, if the crosier could be cramm'd in,
A fig for Lechmere, King, and Hambden!
You'll then defy the strongest Whig
With both his hands to bend a twig;
Though with united strength they all pull,
From Somers, down to Craggs and Walpole."

Swift's Works, vol. xii., p. 320.)

Lord Chancellor.

3 Sir Edward Northcy, attorney-general.

vented me; expecting they would come to some [reconciliation.] But I followed them to Windsor, where my Lord Bolingbroke told me, that my scheme had come to nothing. Things went on at the same rate: they grew more estranged every day. My lord-treasurer found his credit daily declining. In May before the queen died, I had my last meeting with them at my Lord Masham's. He left us together; and therefore I spoke very freely to them both, and told them, I would retire, for I found all was gone.' Lord Bolingbroke whispered me, · I was in the right. Your father said, « All would do well. I told him, " That I would go to Oxford on Monday, since I found it was impossible to be of any use."”i

Nothing, indeed, was now left for Swift, but to execute the resolution he had repeatedly announced, of retreating from the scene of discord, without taking part with either of his contending friends. He set out for Oxford on the Monday succeeding his ineffectual interview, and from thence went to the house of the reverend Mr Gery at Upper Letcombe, Berkshire, where he resided for some weeks in the strictest seclusion. His feeling of this melancholy change, from all that was busy and gay, to the dulness and uniformity of a country vicarage, is expressed in a letter to Miss Vanhomrigh. The

i Swift's Works, vol. xix., p. 74.

? [June 8, 1714. “I am at a clergyman's house, an old friend and acquaintance, whom I love very well; but he is such a melancholy thoughtful man, partly from nature, and partly by a solitary life, that I shall soon catch the spleen from him. Out of ease and complaisance, I desire him not to alter any of his methods for me; so we dine exactly between twelve

secession of Swift from the political world excited the greatest surprise—the public wondered, the party writers exulted in a thousand ineffectual libels, discharged against the retreating champion of the high church, _and his friends conjured him

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and one; at eight we have bread and butter, and a glass of ale, and at ten he goes to bed. Wine is a stranger, except a little I sent him, of which, one evening in two, we have a pint between us. His wife has been this month twenty miles off, at her father's, and will not return these ten days. I never saw her, and perhaps the house will be worse when she comes. I. read all day, or walk, and do not speak as many words as I have now writ, in three days; so that, in short, I have a mind to steal to Ireland, unless I feel myself take more to this way of living, so different, in every circumstance, from what. I left.”—Swift's Works, vol. xix., p. 336.]

1 See Pope's Letter, 18th June, 1714, Swift's Works, vol. xvi., p. 121, and that of Thomas Harley, 19th June, 1714, Ibid. p. 123.

: One of these, which exbibits a good deal of humour, was called, A Hue and Cry after Dean Swift, containing a copy of his Diary, &c. It is reprinted in his Works, vol. xvi., p. 200. It will surprise the reader in perusing this, how closely the libeller has touched many of Swift's real habits; and the circumstance serves to show, more plainly than a thousand general allegations, that even the most private particulars concerning him, had been for some years the object of public attention. His minute register of petty expenses, and the little shifts he adopted to diminish them, are mimicked very much in the style of his own Journal, and two or three circumstances in the Diary happened to coincide whimsically enough with the actual fact. lmo, He left Ford to settle for his handkerchiefs: Compare the Diary, ibid., vol. xvi., p. 201, Saturday, with p. 157 of the same volume. 2dly, If he did not borrow money of his bookseller, as in the Diary, (ibidem,) he seems to have made such an arrangement with Bar. ber, his printer, who tells him all his bills shall be answered, p. 132. And though he did not then take exclusively to reading the civil wars of England, (ibidem,) yet, after the decline of his faculties, it was the only work he perused, and

in numerous letters, to return and reassume the task of a peacemaker. This he positively declined, but he seems to have meditated the extraordinary plan of an appeal to the public, at least to the Tory part at large, against those errors on which the administration seemed splitting asunder.

With this view, he composed the "Free Thoughts on the State of Public Affairs," in which it is remarkable, that, although he loved Oxford far better than Bolingbroke, and indeed better than any other man who lived, yet almost the whole censure expressed in the piece falls to the share of that states

His affectation of mystery, his want of confidence in his colleagues, his temporizing with the opposite party, and maintaining many of the Whigs in office, are noticed at length, and with some severity. The infatuation of the internal dissension of the ministers, compared to a ship's crew quarrelling in a storm, or when within

gunshot of the enemy, is the only particular in which Bolingbroke shares the blame with Oxford. The


he read it thrice over. In two particulars the Diary misrepresents his habits. Swift never appears to have smoked tobacco, and certainly never used wine, nor any liquor, to excess.

The following notice of Swift occurs in a poem On the late Examiner, which appeared about this time.

“ O Jonathan! of merry fame,
As Swift in fancy as in name,
Here lie, as thou hast often done,
Thy holy mother's pious son;
Deprived of paper, pen, and ink,
And, what is worse, deprived of drink;
For lo! thy idol Ox, thy Staff and Rod,
As thou would'st say, are dropp'd by God," &e

Political Merriment, 1714.

measures recommended as a remedy for the imminent danger, are such as suited the headlong audacity of the former, rather than the slow and balancing policy of Harley. These are, Ist, to achieve a complete predominance of the Tory party, by an absolute exclusion of the dissenters, termed the open enemies of the Church of England, from every degree of power, civil or military; a disqualification to be extended likewise to all Whigs and low-church men, affirmed to be her secret adversaries, unless promotion be earned by a sincere reformation. This great work was to be accompanied by a new modelling of the army, especially of the royal guards, which are pronounced fitter, in their existing state, to guard a prince to the bar of a high-court of justice, than to secure him on the throne. 2dly, After a thorough, and doubtless a sincere disavowal, of the exiled branch of the House of Stuart, it is strongly recommended that all secret intercourse between any party in England and the court of Hanover be broken off; that the visits of the presumptive heir, and his claims to be called to Parliament, be no longer pressed upon the queen without her permission ; and that the electoral prince should be required to declare bis utter dislike of factious persons and principles, more especially of the party who affected to be peculiarly zealous for his rights, and to avow himself entirely satisfied with her majesty's proceedings at home and abroad. This was bold, daring, uncompromising counsel, better suited to the genius of him who gave it than to that of the British nation, and most likely, if fol

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