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and I cannot conceal the impression, that secute those who practise what they be the suffrage of the man, the most cele- lieve in religion, and who wish to preserve brated for talents, virtues, and success, the worship of their fathers! We read has made on my heart. Give me leave, in the Constitution, that “ No one ought above all, lo acknowledge with an inte- to be disturbed for his religious opinions ;" rest infinitely superior to all personal con- we read in the laws concerning religion, sideration, the eulogy which you have oaths, deprivations, infamous penalties, made on the respectable order of which and exile ; and it is on the overthrow of I have the honour to partake the mis- their new Constitution that they found the fortunes. The first orator of England civil Constitution of the clergy. What has become the defender of the clergy of has become of all those natural laws, France. Yours is the voice that has so which were to serve for the basis of all long directed, and balanced the opinion their laws ? We are the men whom, of a nation, of which France ought rather they wish to accuse with prejudices, who to be the rival by its progress in intelli- plead this day the rights of liberty: The gence, than by its political interest. Oh! cause, sir, that we have defended, is the that the dark clouds which overhang my noble, just, and holy cause of liberty, country may not for ever obscure the humanity, and religion. The clergy of rays of light which the sciences, letters, France have demonstrated what it was and the arts bestow! We are in a time persuasion without fanaticism-courage of trouble; we attend only to the noise of without excess—and resistance without our discussions; we read only the pro- trouble, and without insurrection. We ductions of party; and how many wise have suffered all kinds of loss; we have men and enlightened citizens remain in endured all sorts of rigour; and we remain silence! We can no longer judge for tranquil and firm, because nothing is so ourselves, and a foreign observer only can unconquerable as the probity which supdecide for us, what ought to be the judg- ports itself on religion. Behold that of ment of posterity.
which they cannot judge in the world! When my colleagues, in addressing They conceive that honour is the only senthemselves to you, chose me for their organ, timent which influences men of all conI was penetrated with their sentiments, ditions to the accomplishment of the and with those of the ministers of all most sacred duties. God forbid that I ranks, whom nothing can separate from should weaken this noble instinct, which their consciences. I spoke for them with comes to the aid of reason, which rallies the feeling which they gave me ; and the warrior in the day of combat, and the noble thoughts, the touching expres- which can animate to the love of the sions, I can boldly say, were only the public weal when it does not mislead us in daily impressions which the knowledge the pursuit! But you have better defined of their virtues inspires. It is wanting this simple and true sentiment, “which to their glory that you should see them, as I consists in the habitual impression of our have seen them, simple in their conduct, duty, of right and of piety.” This sentitranquil in their adversity, and content with ment ought to be in general that of good having fulfilled their duty. The church citizens, and there are no morals in a of France is the stranded bark which country where it is not acted upon. If the waters have left after the tempest, they wish to destroy religion in France, and every one of us in the shipwreck con- it will be the first example of an empire templates with astonishment those new without religion ; and no one has proved, heavens, and this new earth, which were sir, with more eloquence than yourself, unknown before. By what destiny must how much it imports to attach the prinit be, that after having supported, all my ciples of human society to something too life, those maxims of Christian charity, high for man to outrage or destroy. They of which the first ages of the church gave must consecrate by religion, respect for us both lessons and examples, I see myself the laws; for what must the laws be, the victim of intolerance and persecution! which an entire people obey only through It is in the eighteenth century-it is in a constraint, and not by inclination? They pation that boasts of its philosophy—it is will soon perceive that the force to which even in the moment that they announce they yield is only the force which they the Revolution of Liberty, that they per- give; this force will weaken of itself by
general corruption, and the state is no plated with that entire composure, that more!
nothing but the innocence, integrity, and You have reason, sir, to encourage us usefulness of his life, and an unaffected in the laborious career to which we are submission to the will of Providence, could doomed. It is the writings of such men bestow. In this situation he had every as you, which maintain in all nations a consolation from family tenderness, which wholesome morality. We cannot help be- his own kindness to his family had indeed lieving that our fellow-citizens will sooner well deserved. or later do us the justice which we re- Sir Joshua Reynolds was, on very many ceive from foreigners; and that we shall accounts, one of the most memorable men revive, in more peaceable times, the prin- of his time. He was the first Englishciples of religion and humanity.
men who added the praise of the elegant 'I do not speak to you, sir, of those arts to the other glories of his country. other writings, in which I am desirous of In taste, in grace, in facility, in happy inshowing how useful would be the lights vention, and in the richness and harmony of a long and peaceable administration. of colouring, he was equal to the greatest It does not belong to me to judge of the masters of the renowned ages. In poruse which may be made of them, and it trait he went beyond them; for he commust not astonish us, that men are un- municated to that description of the art, in grateful for truths which come from us, which English artists are the most enwho have no passion for revolutions. gaged, a variety, a fancy, and a dignity
Accept, sir, the testimonies of the vene- derived from the higher branches, which ration and attachment, which well-inten- even those who professed them in a sutioned men ought to feel for the enlightened perior manner, did not always preserve and virtuous of all countries. I cannot tell when they delineated individual nature. you how sensible we have been to the His portraits remind the spectator of the attention, which the clergy of England invention of history, and the amenity of have shown towards one of our most landscape. In painting portraits, he apvirtuous and respectable colleagues. You peared not to be raised upon that platform, are equally just to his character in society, but to descend upon it from a higher sphere. as to his principles and courage ; and His paintings illustrate his lessons, and such are the regrets of his diocese, that his lessons seem to be derived from his they consider his absence as a public ca- paintings. lamity.
He possessed the theory as perfectly I have the honour to be, as the practice of his art. To be such a &c. &c. &c. painter, he was a profound and pene
trating philosopher. On the 23d of February 1792, died Sir In full happiness of foreign and domesJoshua Reynolds, the old and constant tic fame, admired by the expert in art, friend of EDMUND BURKE, who, on the and by the learned in science, courted by impulse of the moment, drew up a beau- the great, caressed by sovereign powers, tiful sketch of his character, for the public and celebrated by distinguished poets, papers. This eulogium, which has been his native humility, modesty, and candour compared to that of Apelles, by Pericles, never forsook him, even on surprise or we here insert, as alike honourable to the provocation; nor was the least degree of merits of the deceased, and the feelings of arrogance or assumption visible to the the survivor :
most scrutinizing eye, in any part of his
conduct or discourse. Last night, in the sixty-ninth year of
His talents of every kind-powerful bis age, died, at his house in Leicester from nature, and not meanly cultivated by Fields, Sir Joshua Reynolds.
letters-his social virtues in all the relaHis illness was long, but borne with a tions and all the habitudes of life, renmild and cheerful fortitude, without the dered him the centre of a very great and least mixture of any thing irritable or que- unparalleled variety of agreeable socierulous, agreeably to the placid and even ties, which will be dissipated by his death. tenor of his whole life. He had from He had too much merit not to excite the beginning of his malady a distinct some jealousy, too much innocence to view of his dissolution, which he contem- provoke any enmity. The loss of no
man of his time can be felt with more quence of which was, that instead of sincere, general, and unmixed sorrow. one governor they had seven hundred HAIL AND FAREWELL!
With such an instance before their Sir Joshua Reynolds gave a striking eyes, Mr. Burke said, his advice was, testimony of the steadiness of his attach- “ Be wise by experience; hold fast the ment to Mr. Burke, by appointing him blessings you enjoy, and trust to no theoone of his executors, and bequeathing to retical remedies.” him £2,000, in addition to a like sum Soon after this, Mr. Fox came forward which he had lent to hiin some time be- with a motion in favour of the Unitarian fore, and the bond for which he directed Dissenters; which Mr. Burke also opto be cancelled.
posed, not upon intolerant grounds, but It has been said, and at one time the from a persuasion that the claimants report was pretty generally credited, that were dangerous subjects, who aimed at the the published discourses of Sir Joshua, downfall of every system which was dear upon the principles of the art which he to the country, and whose religion was adorned, were in a great measure indebted connected with political principles hosfor their elegance to the pen of BURKE; but tile to the welfare of the establishment this assertion has been so completely both civil and religious. This charge disproved by those who possessed the roused the members around him, (for he best means of information, as to be no still sat on the opposition bench,) to an longer worthy of credit.
excessive degree of animosity. In anThis was a busy year to Mr. BURKE, swer to those who demanded proofs of who, besides his private avocations, and what he alleged, Mr. Burke narrated the the multiplicity of his correspondence, felt proceedings of some late meetings of the himself bound to stand forward against Unitarian Dissenters, which demonstrated the innovations proposed by his old as- unequivocally their connexion with the sociates, Early in the session, Mr., now French cannibals. This expression being Earl Grey, introduced his motion for a caught up by the supporters of the motion, Parliamentary Reform, which ill-timed produced a repetition on the part of Mr. measure was opposed by Mr. BURKE in BURKE, who said, Gentlemen might cry a very powerful speech. He began by out, “ Hear! hear!” as long as they comparing his situation to that of a worn- thought proper; he had, however, assertout invalid in the battles of the state, and ed no more than what he could prove; who was now left to guard the citadel for he could show, by documents, that of the constitution. After this exordium the French cannibals, after having torn he waived the general subject as offering out the hearts of those they had murdered, nothing new, but he showed the danger squeezed the blood into their wine and of the discussion, by exhibiting proofs drank it. that there was an avowed party in the As the name of Dr. Priestley was country whose object was to overthrow brought up in the course of this debate, and change the constitution. Upon being Mr. Burke took occasion to bestow some urged by the most clamorous calls, to severe censures upon the principles of produce his evidence, he entered into par- that restless polemic. This will account ticular details, and named several socie- for the angry tone in which the doctor ties recently formed on revolutionary prin- ever after spoke of his old acquaintance ; ciples. “When such persons," said he, but when he circulated the story that Mr. “the advocates for Paine's doctrines, thé BURKE, on hearing of the riots at Birsolicitors of a confederacy with the most mingham, ran about in an ecstacy of joy, infamous foreign clubs, were also the ad- congratulating every body he mei, he was vocates for a Parliamentary Reform, it guilty himself of the very offence against was bigh time to sound the alarm of dan- charity, which he attempted to fasten upon ger to the constitution. In France, the another, for he had no authority whatever advocates of Reform, at the very moment to adduce in proof of what he related. their king was carrying into effect a real Such was the serious aspect of the times, and substantial change for the national that parliament assembled again at the good, snatched the crown from his head, end of the same year, to adopt measures and 'overturned his throne; the conse for the security of the country, the peace
of which was threatened by societies affili- and to admire a monarchical form of goated on the pretext of Reform, but palpa- vernment. In the mean time the ranks bly intended to bring about a Revolution, of opposition became thinner every day, similar to that of France. In the debates and many of the friends of Mr. Fox folthat arose upon the address, Fox and She- lowed the example of Burke, when he ridan ridiculed the alarm that had been crossed the floor of the house, and declar. excited, and condemned the speech from ed that he quitted the camp for ever. the throne, as a libel upon the people. On taking a retrospect of these temBURKE, in reply, maintained that with the pestuous scenes, and considering the marBame justice Cicero might have been vellous events, that for a series of years charged with libelling all Rome, when he resulted from the revolutionary abyss announced the conspiracy of Cataline and then opened in France, one cannot help his companions, and their intention to admiring the penetrating genius of the burn the city, and massacre the senate. man who first detected the deceitful mass
Against the proposition of Mr. Fox that lay beneath, and foretold the desolafor a negociation with the French repub- tion which the eruption would produce. licans, he entered his solemn protest in Mr. Burke might truly be called the Casthis energetic language : “Stained with sandra of bis day, for every speech that crimes, blasting and damning all the courts he uttered, and every line that he wrote on of Europe, ought France to be acknow- the subject of France, received in the issue, ledged ? Ought she to be acknowledged the stamp of an oracle. It is true, that without waiting (in the words of Hamlet) his zeal on this subject, sometimes carried for the whetting of the axe ?" Ought she him to great lengths, but if in a few into be acknowledged in the teeth of all stances, as when he exhibited a dagger to her decrees of universal hatred to mo- illustrate the character and faith of repubnarchies, and in the teeth of the com- lican amity, he appeared too theatrical; mission of regicide? Oh! if she were, the the integrity of the motive must be admitnation might depend upon it, that the ted, and much allowance therefore is due murder of the king of France would only to the enthusiasm by which he was anibe preliminary to the murder of the king mated. At this critical period, the thoughts of England !
of Mr. Burke were directed wholly to the Mr. BURKE then proceeded to declare, general welfare, while Mr. Fox courted that as soon as Great Britain acknow- the applause of the multitude. The coolledged the existing state of things in France, ness that had subsisted between these two by a formal negociation, from that moment, great men for three years, was not howrebus extantibus, she must bow the neck to ever of such a nature as to preclude all that country. This was a consequence hopes of reconciliation, till this session of which he insisted would be the result of parliament. Efforts indeed had actually such policy. “ In her system of conduct,” been made, to bring about a union of parties observed the orator, “ France has fol. for the public benefit, but they were all renlowed that of Mahomet, who, affecting to dered nugatory by the obstinacy of Mr. preach peace, carried his Koran in one Fox, who even refused to consult the most hand, and the sword in the other, to punish respectable members of the opposition, all who would not acknowledge hís mis- on the measures proper to be adopted in sion. Thus has acted the French repub- the senate. lic. It has published a declaration of the It seemed therefore evident, that he was rights of man, and propagated them by setting up for himself, and as he espoused the sword.”
the cause of the French abroad, and that Mr. Fox, however, was not to be driven of the republican faction at home, there from his purpose by these arguments, was reason enough to apprehend the most though they were confirmed by the glar- serious consequences from his ascening evidence of facts on every side. He dency.. Burke knew that revolutionary persevered in maintaining that there was principles must produce revolutionary no danger to be apprehended from the practices; and it was this conviction revolutionary doctrines which were then which made him so active in exposing the rapidly spreading over the country, and danger of that friendship with regicides, he still continued to palliate the conduct which his opponents assiduously sought of the French republicans, though at the and earnestly recommended. At the end same time he professed to abhor regicide, of this stormy session, Mr. BURKE drew
up, and communicated to the Duke of friends, assisted by a servant, was carryPortland, a narrative of the proceedings ing him into another room, he faintly said, of Mr. Fox and his cabal, in which many “ God bless you,” fell back, and expired extraordinary facts were developed, full without a groan. His remains were inenough to justify the separation ihat had terred, on the 15th, in the church of Beataken place, and the necessity of giving consfield in Buckinghamshire, in which support to the government for the preser- parish he had long resided, on an estate vation of the constitution.
which is said to have been given him by the In 1794, Mr. BURKE had two severe marquis of Rockingham. But it is extrials, in the death of his brother, followed traordinary, and little to the credit of the by that of his only son Richard, who was age, that as yet no monument has been his colleague in the representation of Mal- raised to his memory. Mr. Burke in his ton. The next year he retired from par. person was about five feet ten inches in liament; and soon after received the grant height, erect, and well formed ; his counof a pension for himself and his wife, tenance was pleasing, but being very nearpayable out of the civil list. But this sighted, his action in public speaking lost mark of the royal favour, though bestowed much of its effect. Of his talents there when he was no longer in a situation to cannot be two opinions; his knowledge assist ministers by his vote, brought upon was so various that he could converse him a load of illiberal abuse; and two upon all subjects, and that with such a peers did themselves no honour by the grasp of mind and felicity of expression, manner of their noticing Mr. Burke and as delighted the hearer, who, on parting his pension in the House of Lords. from him naturally exclaimed,
These illiberal attacks, (for such they a wonderful man!" unquestionably were,) produced a spirit- As an orator he stood confessedly in ed retort in a letter addressed to Lord the very first class, but he had the fault Fitzwilliam. In this tract the venerable of prolixity, and too generally overloaded author gave abundant proof, that neither his argument with an exuberance of illusage nor misfortune had weakened his trative imagery. His metaphors were mental energies; and if those who so wan- sometimes incongruous, and his language tonly provoked him did not writhe under was occasionally so low as to excite surthe scourge, their nerves must have been prise and disgust. In his manners he was of a peculiar construction.
urbane and generous, very communicaThe next and last performance which tive of his advice, and ready to patronize Mr. BURKE gave to the public, was a merit. Of this he gave a proof in his series of“ Letters on the Proposals for liberality to Barry the painter, whom he Peace with the Regicide Directory of took under his protection in Dublin, and France;" and of all his works this may sent him at his own expense to Italy. fairly challenge the pre-eminence for a While there, the most friendly correspondcomprehensive view of foreign and do- ence passed between them, and through mestic policy, strength of reasoning, and life Mr. BURKE behaved kindly to his powerful appeals to the understanding. ingenious countryman, although the be
'The design of it was as exalted as the haviour of Barry was far from being such execution was masterly; being no less as he could approve. than to rouse the nation from a state of The literary character of Mr. BURKE despondency under difficulties, to confi- is above all praise. Though he wrote dence in its resources, and a vigorous ex- rapidly, not a line dropped from his pen ertion of its powers, in a struggle, the but what bore the striking impress of his glorious termination of which our politi- powerful mind, and in truth he can hardly cal Nestor foresaw and foretold.
be said to have written a single page withAt length these incessant labours ope- out communicating to the most enlightenrated upon the constitution of Mr. Burke ed reader something new, either in thought in a manner that soon gave indications or illustration. Wisdom and eloquence, of a rapid decay. Still, amidst all his which others attain with labour, were in bodily weakness, his mind preserved its him the habitual and ordinary march of vigour, and on the seventh of July, 1797, his ideas; whence his style constantly exhe conversed with animation on the great hibits such a superabundance of argument subject which had so long occupied his and imagery, that while our attention is thoughts. The next day, while one of his pursuing the track of his reasoning, we