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suburb, interfered with absolute seclusion. The minor gentry, who were independent of professions and trades, have been in great measure bought out and led to migrate into towns; but perhaps they may have successors of a somewhat different position, who still take an interest in that rational and elevated Conversation which is generally 'suffered to be lost in Oblivion and Forgetfulness." In the same letter to his wife, Mr. Merivale tells her that he looks forward with pleasing anticipation to the "Feasts of Reason "and the Flow of Soul," which, I think, we may expect the enjoyment of from the society of the little Circle of our im'proving friendships.' Mrs. Merivale, on a visit to her brother Herman in Gower Street, then in the outskirts of London, writes to her husband that we do not dine till five; and I am not yet reconciled to this new mode of living, 6 though I acknowledge the convenience of doing in this respect as others do.' Her granddaughter has a vivid recollection of Mrs. Merivale in her later days, with 'a slightly formal and old-fashioned "abord," her cap with sober ribbons, and the short curls of light artificial hair (so generally worn by old ladies of that day) descending 'from under it.' The Dean of Ely supplies from personal recollection a corresponding portrait of his grandfather :'Dark brown bobwig and pigtail (I think), ruddy brown coat (cutaway, and with standing collar), and waistcoat with shirt-frill, black smallclothes and dark worsted stockings and buckled shoes (indoors). Hessian boots for walking and driving; no stick, and still less an umbrella; hat low, and rather broad-brimmed. I still remember the very aged horse on which he used to ride (circ. 1814), and on which I was often taken uneasily en croupe, which bore originally the name of Lightfoot, afterwards changed to Sprightly, out of tenderness to the fame of the great Biblical commentator.'

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Mr. Merivale, notwithstanding his early distaste for the Dissenting ministry, continued through life to be, like his father, a Unitarian. The Katenkamp family had joined the same sect soon after their arrival in England. Mr. Merivale was a sturdy conscientious Dissenter of the old school; combining an absolute horror of Radicalism and disloyalty, 6 as some of the old "Church and State" Dissenters did in 'those days.' When the Unitarian minister at Exeter once preached a Jacobinical sermon, Mr. Merivale withdrew for a time from the meeting and held a conventicle in his own house. His freedom from sectarian prejudice may be inferred from his sending his son to be a pupil of a Mr. Burrington who was Vicar of Chudleigh. A sister of his wife's was

married to Mr. Hole, a clergyman of good fortune and some literary pretensions; and through an acquaintance which began with their children, Mr. and Mrs. Merivale formed a close intimacy with the family of Dr. Drury, the well-known head-master of Harrow, who had an estate and residence at Dawlish. Mrs. Merivale's autobiography contains a series of touching accounts of the deaths of several of her young children. Of two surviving daughters one died unmarried. Her sister married Mr. Mallet, son of M. Mallet du Pan, well known in the early part of the French Revolution as a constitutional royalist. A son of the marriage, the Rt. Hon. Sir Louis Mallet, after holding other positions in the public service, succeeded Herman Merivale as Under Secretary of State for India. The only son who arrived at maturity, John Henry Merivale, married a daughter of Dr. Drury. A sketch has already been given of his uneventful career. His diaries have an interest of a different kind from that of the memoirs and letters of his grandfather. Novelty and familiarity of recorded manners and customs are almost equally attractive in a biography.

The change of manners in the two generations which intervened seems to have been greater than the difference of thought and language between the early part of the nineteenth century and the present time. If the result of the comparison is not illusory, the modern character of those who were young in the days of the Regency is the more remarkable because political material and change has, in the later period, been far more rapid and more complete. Some allowance must be made for the gradual elevation in social rank of the descendants of the Northampton tradesman and the Tavistock Unitarian minister, though Samuel Merivale was as far removed from illiterate vulgarity as his accomplished grandson. When the young barrister settled in London, and when he married, the old aristocratic constitution was apparently in full vigour, and stage-coaches supplied the ordinary means of locomotion. It would be tedious to enumerate all the real or supposed political anomalies which have since disappeared, or the benefits of railways and steamboats, of cheap postage, of repealed taxes, of abolished restrictions on trade, and of other improvements which have long served as commonplaces for popular declaimers. It is nevertheless certain that the lawyer or man of letters of sixty years ago would find himself more at home in a drawing-room of the present time than his grandfather or perhaps his father would have felt in the society

which his descendant frequented in the early part of the century. John Henry Merivale was fortunate in his associates at St. John's College, Cambridge, some of whom became his friends for life. The most intimate and one of the most constant was Mr. Denman, afterwards a peer and Lord Chief Justice. Another contemporary was Mr. Tennyson, who will be remembered as Lord Tennyson's father; Harry and Benjamin Drury, sons of Dr. Drury, formed a part of the same circle. Mr. Hodgson, the friend of Lord Byron, who became Provost of Eton, was two or three years younger. As a Dissenter Mr. Merivale was unable to take a degree, and, if his biographer is not misinformed, to enter the final examination. The Dean of Ely, if he has approved the statement, is not likely to be mistaken on a point of academic practice; but in his own time Dissenters, though they were still excluded from University degrees, often took honours at Cambridge. Another explanation might be found in the determination both of Merivale and of Denman to abandon the distasteful study of mathematics. Both of them lived to see their own want of University distinction supplied, probably with higher satisfaction to themselves, in the next generation.

The representatives of the Merivale family appear, by a not uncommon reaction, to have habitually deserted the political opinions in which they had been brought up. It was probably under the influence of Denman that Merivale gave a vote, which must have been a faggot vote, as he had certainly no property in Middlesex, 'in the cause of liberty for Byng and Burdett. The only remarkable incident of the day which the diarist notices is that, for want of a horse or of a riding-dress, the supporter of liberty went down to Brentford on the polling day in one of the baronet's five 'hundred coaches. It might perhaps be even now an advantage if democratic agitation were confined to candidates who could afford to have five hundred coaches. Fifteen years later Mr. Merivale shared the alarm, now almost forgotten, which was not without reason excited by the queen's trial. It is interesting to be reminded that moderate and intelligent politicians then apprehended the establishment of a military government backed by all the power of the 'Holy Alliance.' As Mr. Merivale justly remarks: 'We are certainly not ripe for such a revolution, and the 'whole proceeding seems pregnant with the overthrow of 'the Brunswick dynasty.' Denman, who, with excusable enthusiasm, believed that his injured client was necessarily

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innocent, told his friend that he was impressed with a very high opinion of the queen's masculine sense as well as spirit. He says: She seems born to command, and cal'culated to prove that kings and princes are of a different 'race of beings from mere ordinary mortals.' At a later period, reading over calmly the report of the trial, Mr. Merivale satisfied himself both of the guilt of the queen and that there were grave errors of judgement in the conduct of her case by Brougham and Denman. In 1819 Dr. Baillie, brother-in-law of Mr. Denman, told him that the king, who died in the following year, bade as fair for life as any man could do at the age of eighty, and was happier 6 than any man in his dominions.' 'I asked whether there is any intellectual enjoyment? "That of the most joyous ""imagination." Is he conscious of his rank? Does he 'know that he is a sovereign? Implied affirmatively, but I must ask no more questions.' An anecdote of George III. of earlier date is characteristic of both persons concerned. Lord Northington, when Master of the Rolls, asked permission of the king to hold morning instead of evening sittings. The king, objecting as usual to any change of custom, asked the reason of the application. Lord Northington replied that the existing practice went against his conscience, for, being in the habit of getting drunk in the afternoon, he could not answer for the justice of his decisions. This is one of the Chancellor's stories, who says he had it from the old king, who used to relate it as a proof of his (Lord Northington's) scrupulous honesty.' It seems not to have occurred to the king that the Master of the Rolls might with equal honesty have kept himself sober till the day's sitting was over. Mr. Merivale, though he had little intercourse with Lord Eldon, always speaks of him in a kindly spirit. Having written a pamphlet in support of one of Sir Samuel Romilly's measures for improving penal legislation, Mr. Merivale heard himself violently attacked in the House of Lords by Lord Ellenborough. The Chancellor, though an opponent, and though his arguments appeared to me 'most particularly weak and futile, spoke, as he always 'does, like a gentleman, and, without specifying anybody, 'attributed in general terms the most honourable and dis' interested motives to all who had brought the question 'forward, either in debate or publication. In 1827, when Lord Liverpool's Government was broken up, Mr. Merivale says, 'I saw the poor old Chancellor in his private room, and congratulated him on his release from toil, thinking it

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'would be far more soothing to his spirit to treat it as an entirely voluntary act, and one of his own honest seeking, than to affect to treat him as a victim, and bewail his retirement. He did not seem much disposed, however, to ' relish this view of the matter, and, in talking of the pain it gives him to leave the Court, he actually shed tears.' Lord Eldon's disappointment at his exclusion a few months. afterwards from the Duke of Wellington's Cabinet was probably still more severe.

The diary contains few notices of political personages. As an author and scholar Mr. Merivale naturally associated with some of the principal writers and men of letters of his time; and his connexion and intimacy with Mr. Henry Drury led to a temporary acquaintance with Byron. During a visit to Harrow, as early as 1802, he had the honour of 'hearing Lord Byron read his lesson in the Latin Grammar.' In 1814 Lord Byron, addressing him as 'My dear Merivale,' compliments him on his poem of Roncesvaux.' When he afterwards read Moore's Life of Byron' he found that almost every page called up some old association.

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The ' mention made of my own name, though in two or three passages only, is extremely gratifying, the more so as 'Frank Hodgson always assured me that Byron had a sincere regard for me, and these passages, I think, prove At one of their few meetings, Scott told inimitably well' a horrible legendary story. On another occasion Sheridan was 'very entertaining during his second bottle. 'His third made him quite a bore and a sot.' When Byron entertained Denman and others at Henry Drury's with anecdotes of his intrigues, Merivale, and probably the rest of the audience, 'potently doubted their veracity.' Among other celebrated or notorious persons whom he encountered in the course of his life was Irving, then at the highest point of his brief popularity. When he first heard Irving preach, he thought that he had never seen the 'com'bination of all the qualities of an orator in such high 'perfection: force of imagery equal to Jeremy Taylor, flow of words &c. resembling Barrow, enthusiasm exerted in 'the cause of piety and virtue, entire truth and sincerity, 'were among the excellencies of the youthful preacher.' On a second or third visit there were no great faults, but 'less of splendour to redeem them;' and a meeting with Irving at Basil Montagu's house seems to have dissipated the remains of the original illusion. Irving 'received us as if he were maître d'hôtel, and took the visit entirely

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