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These calamities our Revolution averted. It was a revolution strictly defensive, and had prescription and legitimacy on its side. Here, and here only, a limited monarchy of the thirteenth century had come down unimpaired to the seventeenth century. Our parliamentary institutions were in full vigour. The main principles of our government were excellent. They were not, indeed, formally and exactly set forth in a single written instrument; but they were to be found scattered over our ancient and noble statutes ; and, what was of far greater moment, they had been engraven on the hearts of Englishmen during four hundred years. That, without the consent of the representatives of the nation, no legislative act could be passed, no tax imposed, no regular soldiery kept up, that no man could be imprisoned, even for a day, by the arbitrary will of the sovereign, that no tool of power could plead the royal command as a justification for violating any right of the humblest subject, were held, both by Whigs and Tories, to be fundamental laws of the realm. A realm of which these were the fundamental laws stood in no need of a new constitution.
But though a new constitution was not needed, it was plain that changes were required. The misgovernment of the Stuarts, and the troubles which that misgovernment had produced, sufficiently proved that there was somewhere a defect in our polity; and that defect it was the duty of the Convention to discover and to supply.
.. The Convention had two great duties to perform. The first was to clear the fundamental laws of the realm from ambiguity. The second was to eradicate from the minds, both of the governors and the govemed, the false and pernicious notion that the royal prerogative was something more sublime and holy than those fundamental laws. The former object was attained by the solemn recital and claim with which the Declaration of Right commences ; the latter, by the resolution which pronounced the throne vacant, and invited William and Mary to fill it. ...
The highest eulogy which can be pronounced on the revolution of 1688 is this, that it was our last revolution. Several generations have now passed away since any wise and patriotic Englishman has meditated resistance to the established government. In all honest and reflecting minds there is a conviction, daily strengthened by experience, that the means of effecting every improvement which the constitution requires may be found within the constitution itself.
WILLIAM MAKEPEACE THACKERAY: 1811-1863.
Thackeray, the greatest novelist that has appeared since the days of Scott,
was born at Calcutta. He was educated at the Charter House, London, and at Cambridge. After spending some years in the study of art, he entered himself of the Middle Temple, and was called to the bar in 1848. He first became known as a writer by his contributions to Fraser's Magazine. The columns of Punch were next enlivened by his witty and ironical sketches. His first novel, Vanity Fair, appeared in 1845, and secured for him a reputation as the first of living novelists, and the greatest social satirist of the age. His other novels are Pendennis, Esmond, The Newcomes, The Virginians ; and Lovel the Widower and Philip, contributed to The Cornhill Magazine, of which he was for some time editor. His Lectures on The English Humorists, and on The Four Georges, were delivered with great success both in England and America.
THE LAST DAYS OF COLONEL NEWCOME.
From The Newcomes.
Clive, and the boy sometimes with him, used to go daily to Grey Friars, where the Colonel still lay ill. After some days, the fever, which had attacked him, left him ; but left him so weak and enfeebled that he could only go from his bed to the chair by his fireside. The season was exceedingly bitter, the chamber which he inhabited was warm and spacious ; it was considered unadvisable to move him until he had attained greater strength, and till warmer weather. The medical men of the House hoped he might rally in spring. My friend, Dr Goodenough, came to him ; he hoped too: but not with a hopeful face. A chamber, luckily vacant, hard by the Colonel's, was assigned to his friends, where we sat when we were too many for him. Besides his customary attendant, he had two dear and watchful nurses, who were almost always with himEthel and Madame de Florac, who had passed many a faithful year by an old man's bedside ; who would have come, as to a work of religion, to any sick couch, much more to this one, where he lay for whose life she would once gladly have given her own.
But our Colonel, we all were obliged to acknowledge, was no more our friend of old days. He knew usagain, and was good to every one round him, as his wont was; especially when Boy came, his old eyes lighted up with simple happiness, and, with eager trembling hands, he would seek under his bedclothes, or the pockets of his dressing-gown, for toys or cakes, which he had caused to be purchased for his grandson. There was a little, laughing, red-cheeked, white-headed gown-boy of the school, to whom the old man had taken a great fancy. One of the symptoms of his returning consciousness and recovery, as we hoped, was his calling for this child, who pleased our friend by his archness and merry ways; and who, to the old gentleman's unfailing delight, used to call him Codd Colonel.' "Tell little - that Codd Colonel wants to see him !' and the little gown-boy was brought to him; and the Colonel would listen to him for hours, and hear all about his lessons and his play; and prattle, almost as childishly, about Dr Raine, and his own early school-days. The boys of the school, it must be said, had heard the noble old gentleman's touching history, and had all got to know and love him. They came every day to hear news of him; sent him in books and papers to amuse him; and some benevolent young souls—God's blessing on all honest boys, say I-painted theatrical characters, and sent them in to Codd Colonel's grandson. The little fellow was made free of gown-boys, and once came thence to his grandfather in a little gown, which delighted the old man hugely. Boy said he would like to be a little gown-boy ; and I make no doubt, when he is old enough, his father will get him that post, and put him under the tuition of my friend Dr Senior.
So weeks passed away, during which our dear old friend still remained with us. His mind was gone at intervals, but would rally feebly; and with his consciousness returned his love, his simplicity, his sweetness. He would talk French with Madame de Florac, at which time his memory appeared to awaken with surprising vividness, his cheek flushed, and he was a youth again—a youth all love and hope—a stricken old man, with a beard as white as snow covering the noble careworn face. At such times he called her by her Christian name of Léonore; he addressed courtly old words of regard and kindness to the aged lady; anon he wandered in his talk, and spoke to her as if they still were young. Now, as in those early days, his heart was pure ; no anger remained in it; no guile tainted it; only peace and good-will dwelt in it.
The days went on, and our hopes, raised sometimes, began to flicker and fail. One evening the Colonel left his chair for his bed in pretty good spirits, but passed a disturbed night, and the next morning was too weak to rise. Then he remained in his bed, and his friends visited him there. One afternoon he asked for his little gown-boy, and the child was brought to him, and sat by the bed with a very awe-stricken face; and then gathered courage, and tried to amuse him by telling him how it was a half-holiday, and they were having a cricket-match with the St Peter's boys in the green, and Grey Friars was in and winning. The Colonel quite understood about it; he would like to see the game; he had played many a game on that green when he was a boy. He
excited ; Clive dismissed his father's little friend, and put a sovereign into his hand ; and away he ran to say that Codd Colonel had come into a fortune, and to buy tarts, and to see the match out. I, curre, little white-haired gown-boy! Heaven speed you, little friend.
After the child had gone, Thomas Newcome began to wander more and more. He talked louder ; he gave the word of command, spoke Hindostanee as if to his men. Then he spoke words in French rapidly, seizing a hand that was near him, and crying, “ Toujours, toujours !'? But it was Ethel's hand which he took. Ethel and Clive and the nurse were in the room with him ; the latter came to us who were sitting in the adjoining apartment; Madame de Florac was there, with my wife and Bayham.
At the look in the woman's countenance, Madame de Florac started up. “He is very bad, he wanders a great deal,' the nurse whispered. The French lady fell instantly on her knees, and remained rigid in prayer.
Some time afterwards, Ethel came in with a scared face to our pale group
· He is calling for you again, dear lady,' she said, going up to Madame de Florac, who was still kneeling ; ' and just now he said he wanted Pendennis to take care of his boy. He will not know you. She hid her tears as she spoke.
She went into the room, where Clive was at the bed's foot ; the old man within it talked on rapidly for awhile : then again he would sigh and be still : once more I heard him say hurriedly: • Take care of him when I'm in India ;' and then with a heartrending voice he called out, 'Léonore, Léonore !' She was kneel. ing by his side now. The patient's voice sank into faint murmurs ; only a moan now and then announced that he was not asleep.
At the usual evening hour the chapel bell began to toll, and Thomas Newcome's hands outside the bed feebly beat a time. And just as the last bell struck, a peculiar sweet smile shone over his face, and he lifted up his head a little, and quickly said Adsum!'3 and fell back. It was the word we used at school, when names were called ; and lo, he, whose heart was as that of a little child, had answered to his name, and stood in the presence of The Master.
i Go, run.
2 Always, always.
3 I am presente
THE LAST DAYS OF GEORGE III. From The Four Georges.
All the world knows the story of his malady: all history presents no sadder figure than that of the old man, blind and deprived of reason. Wandering through the rooms of his palace, addressing imaginary parliaments, reviewing fancied troops, holding ghostly courts. I have seen his picture as it was taken at this time hanging in the apartment of his daughter, the Landgravine of Hesse-Homburg, amidst books and Windsor furniture, and a hundred fond reminiscences of her English home. The poor old father is represented a purple gown, his snowy beard falling over his breast, the star of his famous order still idly shining on it. He was not only sightless, he became utterly deaf. All light, all reason, all sound of human voices, all the pleasures of this world of God were taken from him. Some slight lucid moments he had ; in one of which, the queen, desiring to see him, entered the room, and found him singing a hymn, and accompanying himself at the harpsichord. When he had finished, he knelt down and prayed aloud for her, and then for his family, and then for the nation, concluding with a prayer for himself, that it might please God to avert his heavy calamity from him, but if ot, to give him resignation to submit. He then burst into tears, and his reason again fled.
What preacher need moralise on this story? what words save the simplest are requisite to tell it? It is too terrible for tears. The thought of such a misery smites me down in submission before the Ruler of kings and men, the Monarch Supreme over empires and republics, the inscrutable Dispenser of life, death, happiness, victory. “O brothers !' I said to those who heard me first in America - O brothers ! speaking the same dear mother-tongue ; O comrades ! enemies no more, let us take a mournful hand together as we stand by this royal corpse, and call a truce to battle! Low he lies to whom the proudest used to kneel once, and who was cast lower than the poorest ; dead, whom millions prayed for in vain. Driven off his throne ; buffeted by rude hands; with his children in revolt; the darling of his old age killed before him