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given some remarks on the grounds upon which the King's title to this book was called in question; which he concludes by observing, that, “ considering only the characters of the persons, and abstracting from the proofs of the facts, the account which ascribes the honour of the performance to Dr. Gauden appears on the face of the thing altogether incredible, and that in favour of King Charles will at least appear probable. But, when all the evidences on both sides of the question are stated in a fair light *, the point will be at once determined,
* Mr. Hume says, “With regard to the genuineness of the production, it is not easy for an Historian to fix any opinion which will be entirely to his own satisfaction. The proofs brought to evince that this work is or is not the King's, are so convincing, that, if an impartial Reader peruses any one side apart, he will think it impossible that arguments could be produced sufficient to counter-balance so strong an evidence: and when he compares both sides, he will be some time at a loss to fix any determination. Should an absolute suspense of judgment be found difficult or disagreeable in so interesting a question, I must confess that I much incline to give the preference to the arguments of the Royalists. The testimonies which prove that performance to be the King's, are more numerous, certain, and direct, than those on the other side. This is the case, even if we consider the external evidence; but when we weigh the internal, derived from the style and composition, there is no manner of comparison. These meditations resemble, in elegance, purity, neatness, and simplicity, the genius of those performances, which we know with certainty to have flowed from the Royal pen: but are so unlike the bombast, perplexed, rhetorical, and corrupt style of Dr. Gauden, to whom they are ascribed, that no human testimony seems sufficient to convince us that he was the author. Yet all the evidences, which would rob the King of that honour, tend to prove that Dr. Gauden had the merit of writing so fine a performance, and the infanıy of imposing it on the world for the King's. It is not easy to conceive the general compassion excited towards the King, by the publishing, at so critical a juncture, a work so full of piety, meekness, and humanity. Many have not scrupled to ascribe to that book the subsequent Restoration of the Royal Family. Milton compares its effects to those which were wrought on the tumultuous Romans by Anthony's reading to then the will of Cæsar. The Icon passed through fifty editions in a twelvemonth; and independent of the great interest taken in it by the Nation, as the supposed production of their mur
the King's right will be for ever established : eren pre udiced men may at last receive conviction, and be ashamed of their own credulity, and the inn pudence of the astonishing accusation *.”
Dr. Nash has collected f the principal arguments on each side of this curious question; and finds reason to conclude, from some observations of Bishop Warburton *, and the whole of the evidence both exdered Sovereign, it must be acknowledged the best prose composition which, at the time of its publication, was to be found in the English language." History of England, Sro, vol. VII. p. 160.
* There is great reason to think, that Lord Clarendon did not believe that Charles himself wrote the Icon Basilike. lle soewhere says, in a letter, “and now the thing is known, nobody will be pleased with it but Mr. Milton." Gauden does every thing but assert in direct terms, that he wrote it, what was done like a king, ought to have a kingly reward,-would the Courtiers have suffered him to vaunt so much of his services, unless they knew he had a secret in keeping? I have no doubt but that the whole was conducted under the eye of the King, who would be suffered by his Bishops, to add or alter, or suggest his own ideas; but I can never be induced to believe that he had a claim to the totality of the work.
+ In his History of Worcestershire, vol. II. p.clvii.
| Bishop Warburton, in his “Remarks on Neal's History of the Puritans," says, “There is full as strong evidence on the other side, which Mr. Neal does not produce; evidence of the King's bed chaoiber, hicn swtar they saw the progress of the word, saw the King write it, heard him speak of it as his, and tran. scribed part of it for him. It appears by the wretched ful-e taste of composition in Gauden's other writings, and by his uncha-te language, that he was utter'y incapable of writing this book, Again, consider what credit was to be given to Gauden's aestrtion of his anchorship. He confesses hin self a falsary and an impostor, who irop sed a spurious book on the publick in the King's name. Was not a man so shameless capable of telling this lie for a Bishoprick, which he was soliciiing on the pretended merit of this work? As to Walker, it is agreed that Gauden told him that he (Gauden) was the Author of the book, and that he (Walker) saw it in Gauden's hand-writing; which is well &c. counted for by a servant, a tithe-gatherer of Gauden, who sivears that Gauden borrowed the book of one of the King's friends, 10 whom it was communicated by the King for their judgment; that he (Gauden) s?t up all night to transcribe it, and that he (the tithe-Fatherer) sat up with him to snuff the candles, and to mend his fire. It is agreed that Charles II. and the Duke of York believed on the word of Gauden, when he solicited his reward, that he (Gauden) wrote it; but then this favoured their prejudices,
ternal and internal, that Gauden was not the author of the book in question. “As he had the character of a proud, ambitious man,” says Dr. Nash, “he might be tempted to encourage, if not invent this forgery, which tended so much to gain him interest at Court. The only similitude I could find between the Eikan Basilike and Gauden's other works consists in the quaint (reek title *, which, perhaps, might not be given to the former by the King, or whoever wrote the book, but by the Publisher to humour the false taste of the times." · Mr. Granger observes, “ Whoever examines the writings of the King and the Divine, will find that Charles could no more descend to write like Gauden, than Gauden could rise of to the purity and dignity of Charles.” But, after all, it may be observed, that, in the volume of “ King Charles's Works,” there are some other pieces which have since been proved not to have been written by him .
and what they believed Lord Clarendon would believe likewise. On the whole, it is so far from being certain, as the Historian (Neal) pretends, that the book is spurious, that it is the most uncertain matter I ever took the pains to examine. · There is strong evidence on both sides; but I think the strongest, and most unexceptionable, is on that which gives the book to the King." History of Worcestershire, vol. II. p. clviii.
* For the history of this quaint title, see Wagstaffe, p. 105.
+ “If we could be sure of this, the matter would be determined at once, as there is no third claimant. It is likely that Charles wrote some, or much; and that Gauden made a book of it.” T. F.
| In the copy of Wagstaffe's “ Vindication” and “ Defence, ** noticed in vol. I. p. 36, is an autograph of the following testimony:
“ Winchelsea, Aug. the 12, 1722. I do affirm that, in the year 1688, Mrs. Mompesson (wife to Thomas Mom pesson, esq. of Bruham, in Somersetshire, a worthy and a very good woman) told me and my wife, that Archbishop Juxon assured her, that to his certain knowledge the EIKSIN BALIAIKH was all composed and written by King Charles the First.-Although in the following book the King's book is thoroughly vindicated, and proved to be of his Majesty's composing, I was willing to add this circumstance, from Mrs. Mompesson, with wbom and her husband my wife and I at that time sojourned.
LETTERS OF HUMFREY WANLEY.
1. “To my Cosen, Mr. SAMUEL WANLEY, Minister
of baningham in Norfolk, two miles from Alesham, and ten miles from Norwich *.
“REV, SIR, “I am not insensible of the dubious reception which a stranger's letter is likely to meet with, especially when the subject of it may seem to be trifling; nevertheless, the account I have had of your open-heartedness and great candour (from my learned countryman Mr. Carte, now of Leicester,) emboldens me to apply myself to you for that satisfaction, which as yet I could never obtain from any other person.
“I am the only surviving son of Mr. Nathanael Wanley, sometime Vicar of Trinity Church in Coventry ; who was born in Leicester in 1633; being the second son of one Mr. Wanley, then a mercer there. My father died anno 1680, when I was between eight and nine years old, leaving several pieces of plate engraven with the same Coat as you see in the Seal of this Letter, which I seal with a Gold Ring commonly worn by him. My Father, with my uncle Mr. Samuel Wanley of Leicester, being bound for my Grandfather, to Mr.
* M$. Lansdowne, (now in the British Museum,) 888.
† See vol. I. p. 84.--From the following title page it is probable that he had also a vicarage in Leicestershire : « Vor Dei, or the great Duty of Self-reflection upon a Man's own Wayes. By N. Wanley, M. A. and Minister of the Gospel at Beeby in Leicestershire. London, printed by J. H. for M. Keinton, at the Fountaine in Paul's Church-yard, 1658." 12mo. pp. 187, exclusive of the Dedication, “ To the Right Honourable my noble Lady Dorothy Countesse of Sunderland,” five more pages. Mr. N. Wanley was author of “ The Wonders of the Little World, 1678," folio.
Benskyn of Groby, for a great sum, before his marriage, and my Father alone being forced to pay all the principal, with interest upon interest, above twenty years after ; my mother, who thought herself in other matters but indifferently used by his relations, broke off all correspondence with them, and seldom talked of them to him ; so that, at the time of my dear Father's decease, I Leing too young to ask questions concerning my Ancestors, and my Mother having made herself in a manner incapable of informing me, and I having never had any conversation with any of my Father's relations, I have all along remained ignorant of any right I have to the Coat which my Father left me.
" That there has been a Family of the name of Wanley, Gentlemen, besides what I have said before, this confirmed me; viz. that some years ago, I saw an Entry made into one of the Books in the Heralds' Office, A. D. 1682, by one Mr. Andrew Wanley of Glocestershire; where is also an impression, in wax, from a Seal engraven with the same Coat as mine; only the Charge was (as I remember) thus ex® pressed, a cross patée, surmounted by a crescent.
It was also noted there, that liis Ancestors came from Basil in Switzerland. I could easily have written about it to Mons. Koenig, the Professor of History and Eloquence at Basil, with whom I was formerly very well acquainted at Oxford, but that Mr. Dale (one of the Pursuivants at Arms) told me he was a little before in Gloucestershire, where he visited these Wanleys, from whom he learnt that they were descended from a Taylor at Amsterdam; which is a different account from what they themselves caused to be registered in the Heralds'
" You see, Reverend Sir, that in this matter (which is of some weight with me) how little and how uncertain my knowledge is; and you being (as I have been told) my Father's Brother's Son, I am bold to request a more certain information froin