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had retired to the country, his irresolution had (if possible) increased, and his health was declining, and in fact he died in two years from this time. The old management therefore appears to have continued.
Of the five, Lord Arran had all the mediocrity of his brother, Ormond, without any of his reputation. Lord Gower was a man of sense and spirit, and great local influence: - “ no man “within my memory," writes Dr. King, 6 teemed and reverenced.” Orrery was one of a family where genius had hitherto been a sort of heir-loom, and he had not degenerated. Parliamentary talents and military knowledge were centered in Lord North; he had served under Marlborough, and lost an arm at the battle of Blenheim, and, in the absence of Ormond, was acknowledged as the Jacobite general.
But by far the ablest of this Junta, and indeed not inferior in talent to any one of his contemporaries, was Francis Atterbury. Born in 1662, and educated at Westminster School and Christ Church, Oxford, he distinguished himself at a very early age by a powerful defence of Luther, and on taking Orders commanded universal attention by his eloquence and active temper. It was by him that the Lower House of Convocation was mainly guided and governed; he was high in the confidence of Queen Anne's last Ministers, and in 1713 was promoted by them to the Deanery of Westminster and Bishoprick of Rochester. Few men have attained a more complete mastery of the English language; and all his compositions are marked with peculiar force, elegance, and dignity of style. A fine person and a graceful delivery added lustre to his eloquence, both in the pulpit and in the House of Lords. His haughty and aspiring mind constantly impelled him into violent measures, which were well supported by his abilities, but which seemed in some degree alien from his sphere. It is well observed by Mirabeau, in speaking of the Duke of Brunswick, that one great sign of a well regulated character is not merely to be equal to its daily task, but to be satisfied
about this time withdrew into France, where he remained for ten' years.
* Anecdotes of his own Time, p. xlv.
with it, and not to step beyond it in search of fresh employment.* Atterbury, on the contrary, could never remain tranquil. He might be compared to the chivalrous Peterborough exclaiming to the Minister, — “You must “find me work in the Old World or the New !” † His devotion to the Protestant faith was warm and pure ; his labours for the Established Church no less praiseworthy ; but his defence was of somewhat too fierce and turbulent a character; he thought less of personal worth than of party principles in others ; and he was one of those of whom it has been wittily said, that out of their zeal for religion they have never time to say their prayers! Yet in private life no trace of his vehemence and bitterness appeared ; his “softer hour” is affectionately remembered by Pope; and his own devoted love to his daughter, Mrs. Morice, sheds a milder light around his character. On the whole, he would have made an admirable Bishop had he been a less good partisan.
The political views of Atterbury were always steadily directed against the accession of the House of Hanover. When the Rebellion broke forth in 1715, a Declaration of Abhorrence of it was published by the other Prelates ; but Atterbury refused to sign it on the pretext of some reflections it contained against the High Church party. At no distant period from that time we find him in frequent correspondence with James, writing for the most part in a borrowed hand, and under counterfeit names, such as Jones, or Illington. Were we inclined to seek some excuse for his adherence to that cause, we might, perhaps, find it in his close study of Lord Clarendon's History, which had been edited by himself conjointly with Aldrich and Smalridge. I have always considered the publication of that noble work (it first appeared under Queen Anne) as one of the main causes of the second growth of
“ Une marque d'un très bon esprit ce me semble, et d'un caractère “supérieur, c'est moins encore qu'il suffit au travail de chaque jour
que le travail de chaque jour lui suffit.” Histoire Sécrète de Berlin, &c. vol. i. p. 30. ed. 1789.
† See his letter to Swift, April 18. 1711. On the style of this striking letter Swift remarks in his Journal, “ He writes so well, “ I have no mind to answer him ; and so kind, that I must answer “ him!” VOL. II.
Jacobitism. How great seems the character of the author! How worthy the principles he supports, and the actions he details! Who could read those volumes and not first be touched, and at last be won, by his unconquerable spirit of loyalty - by his firm attachment to the fallenby his enduring and well-founded trust in God when there seemed to be none left in man! Whose heart could fail to relent to that unhappy Monarch more sinned against than sinning — to that “ gray discrowned head” which lay upon a pillow of thorns at Carisbrook, or rolled upon a block at Whitehall! Or whose mind would not brighten at the thought of his exiled son — in difficulty and distress, with every successive attempt disappointed - every rising hope dashed down-yet suddenly restored against all probable chances, and with one universal shout of joy! How spirit-stirring must that History have been to all, but above all to those (and there were many at that time) whose own ancestors and kinsmen are honourably commemorated in its pages the soldiers of Rupert - or the friends of Falkland ! Can we wonder then, or severely blame, if their thoughts sometimes descended one step lower, and turned to the grandson also exiled for no fault of his own, and pining in a distant land, under circumstances not far unlike to those of Charles Stuart in France! I know the difference of the cases — and most of all in what Atterbury ought least to have forgotten, in religion ; I am not pleading for Jacobitism; but I do plead for the honest delusion and pardonable frailty of many who espoused that cause; I am anxious, to show that the large section of our countrymen which sighed for the restoration of James, were not all the base and besotted wretches we have been accustomed to consider them.
The great object of Atterbury, and of the other Jacobite leaders, was to obtain a foreign force of 5000 foreign troops to land under Ormond. Failing in this, from the engagements of the English Government with almost every Continental Court, they determined, nevertheless, to proceed with only such assistance in arms, money, and disbanded officers or soldiers, as could be privately procured abroad. For this purpose their manager in Spain was Ormond ; in France, General Dillon, an Irish Roman
Catholic, who had left Ireland after the capitulation of Limerick, and had since risen in the French service. The project was to have made themselves masters of the Tower; to have seized the Bank, the Exchequer, and other places where the public money was lodged, and to have proclaimed the Pretender at the same time in different parts of the kingdom. The best time for this explosion was thought to be during the tumults and confusion of the General Election ; but the chiefs not being able to agree among themselves, it was deferred till the King's journey to Hanover, which was expected to take place in the summer. James himself was to embark at Porto Longone, where three vessels were ready for him, and to sail secretly to Spain, and from thence to England, as soon as he should hear of the King's departure. Already had he left Rome for a villa, the better to cover his absence when it should take place; and with a similar view had Ormond also gone from Madrid to a country seat half way to Bilbao.
But the eye of the Government was already upon them. One of their applications for 5000 troops had been made to the Regent of France, who, as they might have foreseen, so far from granting their request, immediately revealed it to Sir Luke Schaub, the English Ministers; on the condition, it is said, that no one should die for it. Other intelligence and discoveries completed the information of the Government, and they became apprised, not merely of the intended schemes and of the contriving heads, but also of the subaltern agents, especially Thomas Carte and Kelly, two non-juring clergymen; Plunkett, the same Jesuit whose active intrigues in 1713. have been mentioned at that period ; Neynoe, another Irish priest; and Layer, a young barrister of the Temple. So many of their letters were intercepted abroad, that at length some conspirators perceiving it,
* Robert Walpole to Horace, May 29. 1722. Reports of Select Committee, 1723. W. Stanhope to Lord Carteret, June 8. 1722. Appendix.
7 Schaub had been knighted at Stanhope's recommendation in October, 1720 ; and next year was appointed Minister at Paris. (Boyer's Polit. State, vol. xx. p. 379, &c.). † Speaker Onslow's Remarks. Coxe's Walpole, vol. ii. p. 554.
wrote letters on purpose to be opened, and with false news, to mislead and distract the Government; but this artifice could not impose on the sagacity of Walpole.* Prudent measures were now adopted with prudent speed. The King was persuaded to relinquish his journey to Hanover for this year ; troops were immediately drawn to London, and a camp was formed in Hyde Park. An order was also obtained from the Court of Madrid to restrain Ormond from embarking. This would no doubt have been sufficient to make the conspirators postpone their scheme, but the object was to crush it altogether; and with this view warrants were issued for the amorehension of all the subaltern agents above named, and of several others.
On the 21st of May, accordingly, Mr. Kelly was seized at his lodgings in Bury Street by two messengers. They came upon him by surprise, and took his sword and papers, which they placed in a window while they proceeded with their search. But their negligence gave Kelly an opportunity of recovering his weapon, and of threatening to run through the first man that came near him ; and so saying he burnt his papers in a candle with his left hand, while he held his drawn sword in the other. When the papers were burnt, and not till then, he surrendered. Neynoe, on his arrest, showed equal spirit, but he did not meet with the same success. He escaped from a window two stories high by tying the blankets and sheets together, and came down upon a garden-wall near the Thames, from whence he leaped into the water, but as he could not swim was drowned. An attempt to escape was also made by Layer; but being brought back, he was examined at great length, and with some success. Much information was also gained from the papers, none from the answers, of Plunkett. As for Carte, the same whose historical writings have since gained him a high and deserved reputation, he fled betimes to France.
At the news of the arrest of Layer, Lord North, who
* Letter to Horace Walpole, May 29. 1722. Even where no trap was intended, the Report of the Select Committee observes of their cant names and allegories, that “ several of these disguises are so
gross and obvious, that they only serve to betray themselves.” This I have remarked in many of the Stuart MS. Papers.