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Barber *, Lambeth-hill, (one of the Aldermen of
him through the streets, eager to catch a glimpse of a man whom they considered as endowed with supernatural powers. One striking circumstance on this particular point I can identify: Mr. Woodfall presented me, from Dublin, with an early copy of this Report; which, at his suggestion, I printed as a separate pamphlet, and advertised for sale ; but not more than three copies were ever called for.' Mr. Woodfall possessed all the virtues of private life that endear a man to society, and was particularly distinguished for his literary talents. In 1793, he sought to be appointed Remembrancer of the City, an office for which he was peculiarly qualified: but private friendships and superior interest prevailed. Mr. Woodfall was also devoted to
rick, Goldsmith, Savage, and all the other members of the old Literary School, of which he was one of the very few remaining disciples. He was so passionately fond of theatrical representations, as never to have missed the first performance of a new piece for at least 40 years; and the publick had so good an opinion of his taste, that his criticisms were decisive of the fall or fortune of the piece and the performer. Unfortunately for himself and his family, he placed all his hopes on the most precarious species of property, and became the proprietor of a news-paper, which his talents raised to eminence; but the talents of no individual could secure it a permanent station upon that eminence. The paper fell, and with it fell his hopes. Though disappointed, he was not to be diverted from his favourite pursuits. He was constant in his attendance at the bar of the House of Lords, which he visited so lately as July 27, 1803. Although he was far advanced in life, he was active, animated, and in full possession of his mental faculties, without the appearance of any considerable waste of his physical strength. To a large family, entirely dependent upon his industry, his death was therefore an unexpected, deplorable, and afllicting event. As, however, the circle of his acquaintance was as wide as the circle of polished life; as he was known by almost every man of rank, fortune, and literary acquirements in England; and as he was loved by many of them, and respected by all ; it is hoped that their regard for the man will not be buried in his grave, but that it will survive, and shew itself in acts of kindness to his sorely-afflicted family. He died, after a week's illness, in his 58th year, in Queen-street Westminster, August 1, 1803; and his remains were interred on the 6th, in St. Margaret's church-yard, Westminster.
* The only printer who has ever had the honour of being Lord Mayor of London. See before, p. 73,
Collins *, Old-Baily.
penny Post, bearing his own name. Hind, Old-Baily. Humpheries, Printer to the Parish-clerks, Silver
street, in the city. James *, Little Britain, Author and Printer of the
*“ He is a composition so made up of justice and industry, that other printers may imitate but cannot exceed. He is a moderate Churchman. A sincere friend, and so expeditious in dispatch of business, that he printed more sheets for me in ten days, than some others did in twenty." Dunton, p. 325.
† “ He swells not like L- his neighbour, with looking big; but is courteous and affable to all, holding courtesy so main an ornament of a thriving printer, as that he loaths any thing that is proud or starched. He is one that thinks what he does, and does what he says; and foresees what he can do, before he promises; so that I have found his “If I can" is more than another's assurance. He is just and punctual in all his dealings, and wipes from printing all the blemishes and imputations cast upon it by ignorance or malice. And, to speak the truth, he is the best friend to a bookseller of all the printers I ever knew. He is a man of a large faith, and so very generous to those that live in his debt, that none but a villain would wrong him. For my own share, I have received so many favours from Mr. Grantham, that I should think it a sin to put away any thing that he can print; and for this reason he is my printer in chief. I never dispose of a copy, but I make it the main article, that Mr. Grantham shall print it. And all this is but what I owe him; for the favours I have received from him, and Mr. Darker, his predecessor, make me his debtor for ever. In truth, Mr. Grantham is so kind to me, the name of friend is too narrow for him, and I want a word that is more significant to express him. And, which crowns his character, he is blest with a wife that deserves him." Dunton, p. 327.
Mr. George James was in this year appointed City Printer, in the room of Mr. Alderman Barber. Two of his brothers, John and Thomas, who distinguised themselves as letter-founders, will be noticed in a future page.--Harris James, originally a letter-founder, and related to this family, was formerly of Covent. Garden theatre, where he represented fops and footmen. Vol. I.
Thomas James, the father of George, who died in 1711, wag thus characterized : “ He is a man that reads much, knows his business very well, and is extremely' obliging to his customers, and is something the better known for being husband to that she-state-politician Mrs. Elianor James.” Dunton, p. 334.
This Mrs. Elianor James was a very extraordinary character, a mixture of benevolence and madness; an assertion that a perusal of the two following letters will fully justify. 1.“ To the Lords Spiritual and Temporal assembled in Parliament, “ May it please your Lordships,
“ I have read a Case that is before your Lordships, relating to one Dye; and I find he has been greatly bafted, and it appears to me that he is the injured person : and the consideration that he has been twenty years, and has borrowed two thousand pounds, which if he should lose, his children would be ruined; and these considerations moved me to hurbly entreat your Lordships, for the love of justice, to consider the length of time, and the great charge, that right may take place, and that an end may be put to this suit: for justice is beautiful; and the God of justice bless your Lordships. My heart is wounded to think that England will be ruined if your Lordships don't stand in the gap: for what advantage can it be to England for Scotland to be united to it? Is the cruel usage wherewith they used the Episcopal churchmen there so soon forgot? Surely there is not a miracle wrought in them, that their natures should be changed: Therefore let Eng. land be England; and Scotland be as it is. And 'tis in your Lordships power to do good to the Church and Kirgdom; for the King leaves it wholly to you, and to the House of Commons: Therefore so act, as you will answer before God, who has committed the Talent of power to your Trust; that you may employ it to his glory, and for the good of your country: and therefore give not the power out of your own hand: and God Almighty give your Lordships such wisdom, that you may be more than conquerors for the glory of God, and the good of the kingdom! Which that the Lord may grant, is the prayer of your humble servant, and souls' well-wisher,
ELIANOR JAMES." 2. “ Mrs. James's Advice to all Printers in General. “ I have been in the element of Printing above forty years, and I have a great love for it, and am a well-wisher to all that lawfully move therein, and especially to you that are masters; therefore I would have you wise and just, and not willingly break the laws of God nor man, but that you would do by all men as you would desire they should do by you : and you cannot be ignorant of the great charge in bringing up of servants in the art of printing; neither can you be insensible how remiss, provoking, and wasteful some servants are, especially when they are encouraged therein, by the unjust hope of getting away from their masters, and having over-work from other masters that · have not had the charge and trouble of bringing them up, which is too frequently practised among you, to the ruin of the trade in general, and the spoiling of youth. For when a boy has served half his time, and has gained some experience in his trade,
he presently begins to set up for conditions with his master; then he will not work unless he has so much for himself, and liberty to go where he pleases; which if his master denies, he then strives to vex his master, and waste his time and goods ; and then when he beats him, away he runs with great com. plaints, when the master is all the while the sufferer; and it is no wonder to hear a boy that wants an honest principle to do his own duty, rail against and bely his master ard mistress ; for he thinks to excuse himself by blackening them. Now I would have this great evil prevented, and that you may easily do, if you will resolve to take no man's servant from him, and then a master may (as he ought) have the benefit of the latter part of his time, to make him amends for his trouble and charge, which is according to the will of God and good men. For if it should happen, that an apprentice by any trick should get away from his master, I would not have you give any encouragements, as inoney, but that he should serve the term of his indenture as an apprentice without ; for giving him money makes him a journeyman before his time : for indeed, if there be any consideration, it ought to be given to the master that had the trouble and charge of bringing him up; and who will serve seven or eight years, if they can get off before? For besides, boys will have a thousand tricks to provoke their masters to anger, in trilling away their time, and flinging their houses into pie, except their masters will be under conditions to give them encouragements, and to give them that liberty to go where they will, and have money to spend, and this is to make the master the servant, and the boy the master; therefore, pray, brother, do not be guilty in destroying of youth, for it is the destruction of the trade. I desire you to take care not to bind any boy except he be above the age of fourteen, and the fewer the better. So I rest your sister and souls' well-wisher, , ELIANOR James."
"Now to you, journeymen ; you are my brothers, for my husband was a journeyman before he was a master, and therefore I wish you well : and take care that you are not guilty of any ill thing, as shewing servants ill examples, and giving bad counsels; for if you should, you would be like Judas, in betraying your master that employs you; for sober men, they scorn to be guilty of this crime ; but for you of the worser sort, you are like devils, for you study how to do all manner of mischief to a good husband, for you hate them because they are better than yourself: had not you better imitate them, and pray to God to make you like them? For what benefit have you in starving your wives and children, and making yourselves sots only fit for hell? Pray, brothers, mend your faults, and pray to God to give you repentance, and to mend for the time to come, that you may be reconciled to God and man, which I heartily wish.
ELIANOR JAMES." Mrs. James, at her death, was a generous benefactress to the church of St. Bene't, Paul's-wharf, where she gave some plate; and on a tablet in that church is this inscription:
“ Anno med Anno 1710, Mrs. Elinor James, to prevent scandal, has thought fit to erect this table, to satisfy the world what she has given to her children since her husband's death." And then follow several sums, amounting to a few hundred pounds, with the dates annexed, which were divided between her daughter Hire and Saunders ; and a lease for 23 years, worth 261. a year.
On another tablet : “ Anno 1712. Mrs. Elinor James did, in her life-time, give to this parish of St. Benedict, Paul's-wharf, for the use of the Communion-table, a large basin furbelowed and gilt, weighing 55 02.-a large dish, embossed and gilt, 40 oz.
-a large salver, furbelowed and gilt, 41 oz.-a pair of embossed candlesticks and sockets, 30 oz.-a small dish, embossed and gilt, 7 oz.-a salver of 18 oz. and two others of 14 oz. each one chalice, with a patten, 602.-and two chalices without pattens; besides several other articles, and an embroidered valance for the pulpit."
In the Library of Sion college are portraits of the father and mother of Mr. George James ;' and of his great-grandfather ; which Mr. Malcolm thus describes :
1. “ Thomas James, S.T. P. 1627, æt. 57; first keeper of the Bodleian Library at Oxford. Given by his grandson's wife. A Horid countenance, full face, and white beard. Dressed in a black gown, cap, and muff. • 2. “ Thomas James, Typogs; presented by his wife; a halflength picture, seated in a chair, the legs and arms of which are spiral. He has a stern thin visage; his hair brown, and part grey, and a white beard. His dress is a loose white gown, orer an embroidered coat; laced band and ruffles, and black cap.
3. “ Elianora conjux Thomæ James ;" a very good picture, whose features and eyes have a disordered and singular expression. Her hair is clark, and fancifully adorned with rich lace, which hangs over the shoulders in tasteful fokls. Her gown is of red silk; and her hands are crossed on a book, the binding of which is most minutely finished, and very splendid. On a talle open before her is a pamphlet, intituled, “ A Vindication of the Church of England, by Mrs. James: in Answer to a Pamphlet, intituled, A new Test of the Church of England's Loyalty." Londinium Relevivuin, vol. I. p. 34; vol. II. p. 471.
Mr. Thomas James had left his books by will to the use of the publick, and the president and fellows of Sion college were indebted to his widow for giving them the preference: but Mr. Reading, in his Catalogue of that Library, observes that “ Mrs. James, by virtue of a clause in her husband's will, claimed al the duplicates in his study. Accordingly some scores of folios, and some hundreds of smaller books, were returned. She insisted also that her husband's books, given anno 1711, might stand together in a distinct part of the Library; and was so far gratified, that the stalls were enlarged (anno 1720), and all the books digested anèw, in order to print the foregoing Catalogue; which I hope will answer the utmost expectations of every Benefactor's friends, since now all the world may read his naine sub- joined to all the books which he has given."