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dern empirics have prescribed for wounds of a peculiar sort, oftentimes imaginary and always to be cured by patience.”
From this time his Lordship appears to have lived in a retired manner, occasionally at Drayton in Northamptonshire, or at Bolebrook near Tunbridge Wells; but principally at his beautiful mansion, Stoneland Park*, adjoining the parish of Withyham in Sussex. Here, away from the bustle of public life, the cavils of party, and the rancorous spirit of his enemies, he passed the remainder of his days in retirement. This is generally the last refuge which all extraordinary men fly to; where the passions may be allayed, and the mind prepared for a happier state of existence.
Hath not old custom made this life more sweet
** Now Buckhurst Park.
Which, like the toad, ugly and venomous,
AS YOU LIKE IT.-Act ii.
To his Lordship's immortal honour be it spoken, that, in this retreat, sequestered from the world, he was a warm benefactor to the poor, and beloved by all who daily waited at the gates of his hospitable mansion. Mr. Cumberland has related many trifling incidents, which on first perusal induce us to believe that his Lordship’s faculties were, in some measure, impaired by the perplexities of a long public life, combined with so many unprosperous circumstances; but we are convinced, when we arrive at that period, only a few hours previous to his dissolution, that our suspicions are totally groundless; for no man ever seemed to possess clearer conceptions, was more fully alive to his situation, or met death with greater firmness and Christian resignation.
As the domestic movements, and the expressions which fall from eminent men, particularly in the evening of life, are at all times interesting, I shall again quote Mr. Cumberland, being able to testify from other authorities who personally
knew his Lordship, that we have a statement which may be fully relied upon. .
“ I now foresaw”, says Mr. Cumberland, “ the coming on of an event, that must inevitably deprive me of one of the greatest comforts, which still adhered to me in my decline of fortune. It was too evident that the constitution of Lord Sackville, long harassed by the painful visitation of that dreadful malady, the stone, was decidedly giving way. There was in him so generous a repugnance against troubling his friends with any complaints, that it was from external evidence only, never from confession, that his sufferings could be guessed at. Attacks that would have confined most people to their beds, never moved him from his habitual
punctuality. It was curious, and probably in some men's eyes would, from its extreme precision, have appeared ridiculously minute and formal; yet in the movements of a domestic establishment so large as his, it had its uses and comforts, which his guests and family could not fail to partake of. As sure as the hand of the clock pointed to the half-hour after nine, did the good lord of the castle step into his breakfast room, accoutred at all points, according to his own invariable costume, with a complacent countenance that prefaced his good morning to each
person there assembled ; and now whilst I recal these scenes to my remembrance, I feel gratified by the reflection, that I never passed a night beneath his roof, but that his morning's salutation met me at my post. He allowed an hour and a half for breakfast, and regularly at eleven took his morning's circuit on horseback at a foot’s-pace, for his infirmity would not allow of strong gestation. He had an old groom, who had grown grey in his service, who was his constant pilot on these excursions, and his general cus. tom was to make the tour of his cottages, to reconnoitre the condition they were in, whether their roofs were in repair ; their windows whole, and the gardens well cropt, and neatly kept. All this it was their interest to be attentive to, for he bought the produce of their fruit trees; and I have heard him
great satisfaction, that he has paid thirty shillings in a season for strawberries only, to a poor cottager, who paid him one shilling annual rent for his tenement and garden: this was the constant rate at which he let them to his labourers, and he made them pay it to his steward at his yearly audit, that, they might feel themselves in the class of regular tenants, and sit down at table to the good cheer provided for them on the audit-day. He never rode out without preparing himself with a store of six-pences in his waistcoat pocket for
the children of the poor, who opened gates and drew out sliding bars for him in his passage through the enclosures : these barriers were well watched; and there was rarely any employment for a servant: but these sixpences were not indiscriminately bestowed, for as he kept a charity-school upon his own endowment, he knew to whom he gave them, and generally held a short parley with the gate-opener as he paid his toll for passing. Upon the very first report of illness or accident, relief was instantly sent, and they were put upon the sick list, regularly visited, and constantly supplied with the best medicines, administered upon the best advice. If the poor man lost his cow, or his pig, or his poultry, the loss was never made
money, but in stock. It was his custom to buy the castoff liveries of his own servants as constantly as the day of clothing came about, and these he distributed to the old and worn-out labourers, who turned out daily on the lawn in the Sackville livery, to pick up boughs and sweep up leaves, and, in short, do just as much work as served to keep them wholesome and alive.
“ To his religious duties, this good man was not only regularly but respectfully attentive. On the Sunday morning he appeared in gala, as if he were dressed for a drawing-room; he marched out his whole family in grand cavalcade