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worthy Mr. Baker; which would immediately raise his choler, make him Hy out into a passion, and abuse him, and call his MS History of St. John's College a Collection of Lies *."
* The following particulars, relative to Mr. Prior, are inci. dental to Mr. Walpole's Life of Baker.
“It is indeed asserted in the new edition of the Biographia Britannica, that Mr. Prior ceded to Mr. Baker the profits of his Fellowship, after his expulsion. If he did, the generous act was worthy of so honest and amiable a man as Mr. Prior ; and it is not to detract from the generosity of one, whose soul glowed with friendship and good-nature, and whose poetry owed not one of its graceful and genteel beauties to asperity, that I am obliged, on the remarks of the gentleman to whom this tract is chiefly indebted, to doubt of the reality of the gift. Though Mr. Baker could have enjoyed the benefit of the cession but a very few years, he being ejected in 1717, and Mr. Prior dying in 1721, the generosity was complete; Mr. Prior not being able to cede his fellowship, but while he enjoyed it. But, on the authority above mentioned, I must question the fact; not from the want of humanity in Mr. Prior, but from his own circumstances, which could ill allow him to be so munificent. Mr. Prior bequeathed books to the value of 2001. (together with the portraits of himself and the Earl of Jersey) to St. John's College, in acknowledgment for having held the Fel. lowship during his life. It is no proof, though perhaps a presumption, that he would not have been so sensible of the obligation, if he had ceded it to another : but, in fact, Mr. Prior's own fortune was so far from splendid, that he was little enabled to be a Patron. He had had the intrinsic merit of having raised hinself, by his abilities, from obscurity to shining eminence, both in poetry, and in the state : and yet there is no trace of his having been greedy of wealth. He left a very inconsiderable fortune; and at the very moinent of Mr. Baker's sacrifice, Mr. Prior's own friends were fallen into sudden disgrace; one of his patrons was in the Tower, and the other in exile, and he himself under prosecution by Parliament. It appears from his friend Dr. Swift, that Mr. Prior had prepared no pecuniary shelter against the storm. “ Our friend Prior," he says, “ not having had the vicissitude of human things before his eyes, is likely to end his davs in as forlorn a state, as any other poet has done before him, if his friends do not take more care of him, than he did of him. self." Swift's Letters, 1766, vol. I. p. 50. Accordingly the Dean, with Mr. Pope, Dr. Arbuthnot, and Mr. Gay, with a zeal that will for ever illustrate that friendly society of men, of the first genius, who never suffered either jealousy, or even party, to interfere with their esteem for congenial merit, set on foot, promoted, and carried into execution, a Subscription for the Publication of Mr. Prior's Works. Mr. Prior, with his other vir
I cannot finish this account without giving another feature of Dr. Powell's picture, though not much to his advantage: for it was he, and Dr. Caryl, who were the two great opposers in the University, of a most useful scheme for new-paving and lighting the Town of Cambridge; than which, no large town in the kingdom wanted it more. The Duke of Grafton, on his being first made Chancellor, very generously offered 500l. and Trinity Hall as much, towards the design: which went on briskly in 1769, and was even carried into the House of Commons; but a stop was put to it all on a sudden; for Dr. Powell starting a difficulty about the pavement of an unfrequented lane adjoining to his College, and Dr. Caryl * making the same objection concerning St. Radegund's Lane; both, as it was said, and supposed, from a spirit of opposition, and because not originally and principally consulted about it, Dr. Hinchliffe taking the lead in this business; together with the mercenary views and objections of some of the townsmen, and Dr. Ewin in particular, some of whom had greatly encroached on the already too narrow streets, about which they expected to be called to account; this laudable undertaking was entirely frustrated up.
I have hitherto met with these following publications of Dr. Powell: though I know more belong to him.
tues, was a man of no ostentation. Would he have accepted a subscription for himself, while ceding an independent, though small, income to another? Yet the assertion is positive. It is not decent to contradict a gentleman of unimpeached character on what he affirms ; yet it may be presumed, that, being a matter of tradition, at the distance of near sixty years, the original reporter may have been mistaken.
W. C.” vol. XLIX. pp. 416. 418. * "I am assured, this Nov. 29, 1777, by Dr. Gooch, to whom i read it, that Dr. Caryl did all in his power to promote the undertaking, which was counteracted in the town, when he was Vice-chancellor." W.C. † Afterwards carried into execution. See vol. II. p. 643.
“A Defence of the Subscriptions required in the Church of England. A Sermon preached before the University of Cambridge on the Commencement-Suoday 1757. By William Samuel Powell, D. D. then Fellow, now Master of St. John's College. Cambridge. 1772. 8vo. Fourth edition. On 1 Cor. i. ver. 10."--Pages 23.
"A Charge delivered to the Clergy of the Archdeaconry of Colchester in June 1772. By William Samuel Powell, D. D. F. R. S. Master of St. John's College in Cambridge and Archdeacon of Colchester. Cambridge. 1773," Svo, Pages 21.
“ Discourses on various Subjects. By William Samuel Powell, D. D. Published by Thomas Balguy, D. D. London. 8vo. 1776."
He is enumerated as a Writer in the Confessional Controversy by the Writers of the Gentleman's Magazine for 1780; p. 226.
Mr. Mainwaring, in the Dissertation prefixed to the Sermons which he preached at St. Mary's and printed in 1780, in 8vo, apologizes at p. xliv. for those of Dr. Powell, which had been censured for a seeming want of devotion in them: and at p. xcii. gives this exalted testimony of his merits. “It would be impossible to produce a more eminent instance of this happy alliance [of taste and genius with learning and good sense), than in the Sermons and Charges of the late Dr. Powell: of whom indeed, on every account, the whole society, over which he presided, might justly join with me in saying, “ Semper honos, nomenque tuum laudesque mane
* Cole's MSS, vol. XLIX. pages 235 to 245.,
! WITH BIOGRAPHICAL NOTICES OF 1 REV. JOHN JONES, DR. YOUNG, &c.
AMONG the Letters to Dr. Birchy in the British Museum, vol. XII. (Ayscough's Catalogue, No.4311.)
are several from the Rev. John Jones, from 1741 till À 1765, with various papers concerning the “ Free
and Candid Disquisitions,” and on literary subi jects in general, which having never been published, : a selection from them shall here be given.
In the earliest of them, dated from Abbots Ripįton, in Huntingdonshire, June 24, 1741, Mr. Jones
tenders Mr. Birch his assistance in the publication of
the Thurloe State Papers. ^ į Jan. 22, 1742. Offers to communicate to Mr. i Birch any thing that may have occurred to his notice
relating to eminent persons of this kingdom.. Men; tions his having a transcript of some valuable MSS.
in Locke's hand-writing, which, under certain limit ations, he is willing to send to Mr. Birch, &c. &c. Thinks of waiting on Mr. Birch in town, if circumstances should adınit of it..
Alconbury, Oct. 1, 1748. Mentions his having been in town with Mr. Birch, and makes a grateful acknowledgement of Mr. Birch's kindness.
Oct. 18. In Osborne's late Catalogue of books (the sale of which began in April, &c.) p. 14, there is a MS. mentioned (No. 120) which is intituled Gravamina Ecclesiastica, and was one of Dr. Basire's MSS.If it is not gone, might we know the general heads of grievances therein mentioned? If sold, could you learn who bougiit it?"
Nov. 12. Sends Mr. Birch a fat pullet: and“wishes he had any thing better to send: but this depaupe
* See a character of this work, and also of its compiler, Mr. Jones, in vol. Ill. p. 15. + Mus. Brit. Bibl. Birch, 4311. Plut. III. H. VOL. I. QQ
rated vicarage of Alconbury), too often checks the freedom and forwardness of my mind.”
"I purpose to wait upon Dr. Middleton one day of next week, and mention what you say. The Preparatory Pieces*, I hope, will not stick much longer upon the hands of those that are engaged in drawing them up.”
"I wish you would be so kind as to consider with yourself by degrees, which may be the properest way of conveying the Introductory Pieces to the press :-as whether by the hand of some Laygentleman, and who ;-and whether they should not be published by a different Bookseller from him who shall undertake the Disquisitions: Dodsley for instance? I have been thinking of Mr. James West (of Lincoln's-inn); but, there being a good part of my hand-writing here and there among those Essays, and that gentleman being acquainted with it (or was formerly), it may not be adviseable to apply to him.-Mr. Plumptree (M.P.) I have no acquaintance with.—You, Sir, know many more such persons than I do, and being upon the spot, may contrive much better; which your favourable regard for so honest a cause will also incline you to do."
Nov. 25. Approves of Mr. Millar as the Bookseller for the intended work.-Judges that 1000 copies will be sufficient for the first impression. "Twelve or thirteen books, handsomely bound, and gilt, must be reserved for presents, and the Authors to have them gratis."
“ As to a judicious and intelligent Corrector of
* Among these was a pamphlet, intituled, “The Expediency and Necessity of revising and improving the Public Liturg humbly represented,” published by Mr. Ralph Griffiths, the intelligent Projector of the Monthly Review. - Another was, “A Blow at the Root, or, an Attempt to prove that the present is the most convenient Time for introducing a further Reformation in our National Churches and Universities," published by Bourne. “ Instructions to Archdeacon Chapman, Dr. Berriman, and Dr. Stebbing, how to draw up an Answer to Dr. Mid. dleton's Free Enquiry, &c.” in Gent. Mag. vol. XIX. p. 246; and a Letter signed Rusticlericus (probably Mr. Jones), ibid. p. 311.