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tian races subject, for the last four centuries, to the Turkish power, and our influence has not unfrequently been exerted beneficially in their behalf. But we cannot in a moment redress these secular wrongs, in a foreign country, by abandoning the traditions of our policy in Europe and Asia, or by setting at nought engagements framed by ourselves and entered into by all the Great Powers. Above all, we desire the maintenance of peace; and we are perfectly convinced that peace is not to be secured by acts of force or violence. These doctrines are, we cannot but know, extremely unwelcome to those more enthusiastic members of our own party who desire the immediate overthrow of the Turkish Empire, and who would cast themselves into the arms of Russia to accomplish so desirable an object. But these ebullitions of feeling are by no means shared by the whole Liberal Party, and they are certainly not shared by the Liberals of France and Germany, to whom much that has recently occurred in England has been a matter of amazement and ridicule. Foreign nations sometimes see us better than we see ourselves. * We have great confidence in the power of Parliamentary debate to winnow the chaff from the wheat, and to separate what is real and practical in this movement from what is visionary and enthusiastical, and we have no fear that the House of Commons or the House of Lords will lose sight of the true interests of this empire. But if the Liberal Party is to exert its proper influence in the discussion of these important questions and to perform the duties of a statesmanlike Opposition, it must be by a steady adherence to the principles of its leader, and by a firm resolution to maintain the policy of moderation, good faith, and peace.
* One of the best papers we have read on the subject entitled “Die • Lage in Orient,' is to be found in a recent number of the · Deutsche • Rundschau'; and we believe it is correctly attributed to an eminent German diplomatist, long resident in this country. We perceive with pleasure that his views exactly correspond with our own.
No. CCXCVIII. will be published in April.
EDINBURGH REVIEW, ,
Art. I.-1. The Works of Sir John Fortescue, Knight, Chief
Justice of England und Lord Chancellor to King Henry the Sirth. Now first collected and arranged by THOMAS (FORTESCUE) Lord CLERMONT. London: Printed for Private
Distribution. 1869. 2. A History of the Family of Fortescue, in all its Branches.
By Thomas (FortESCUE) Lord CLERMONT. London:
Printed for Private Distribution. 1869. Those who were so fortunate as to see the very remarkable
collection of portraits gathered from the principal country houses of Devonshire and Cornwall, and exhibited at Exeter during the visit of the Archæological Institute to that city in 1873, will hardly have forgotten the earliest picture in the assemblage--the portrait of Henry VI.'s Chief Justice and Chancellor, sent from Castle Hill by his representative and descendant the present Earl Fortescue. The portrait, which seems to have formed one of the wings of an altar-piece, of which Sir John Fortescue may have been the donatore,' represents him with his hands clasped in prayer. The face is closely shaven, and the hair, cut short in front, falls from under a plain
The face, grave and pleasant, is not that of the old judge who died at the age of ninety, but shows us the laudator of the ‘leges Angliæ in his younger days, long before he fought at Towton, or passed across the sea to share the exile of Queen Margaret and her son. The picture was possibly designed by some artist of the school of Mabuse, after an earlier portrait ; but however this may be, it remains the only authentic representation of a great man-not the least among those • worthies’ of whom Devonshire is so justly proud—and it is impossible to regard it with other than the highest interest.
VOL. CXLV. NO. CCXCVIII.
Sir John Fortescue was not the first of his race to distinguish himself, but he is the first whose distinction is still recognised among us--one of the earliest to set forth, in anything like an abstract treatise, the excellence of English law and constitution; quite the first, unless we choose to regard in the same light the • Tractatus de Legibus' of Randolph Glanville, the Justiciar of Henry II. ; * and the treatise which he composed
; for the instruction of the young prince who was killed in the fight at Tewkesbury may still be read with pleasure and profit. Since his time, the family to which he belonged has thrown out various branches and offsets from the parent stem; and few of the more ancient houses of this country can prove a more undoubted descent, or can point to a greater number of illustrious sons distinguished alike in camp and in court, than this
• long-lined race of honoured Fortescue.' Its greatest honours (if accession to the ranks of the peerage is thus to be regarded) have been attained in comparatively recent times. The English barony dates from 1746, and the earldom from 1789. In Ireland, the barony, viscounty, and earldom of Clermont were first held by a Fortescue in 1770, and the titles having become extinct, the barony was revived in 1852, in favour of the present Lord Clermont. But from the time, not long after the Conquest, when we first find them settled in the South Hams of Devon, to the present day, there has hardly been a stirring period in the history of this country during which a Fortescue has not come to the front. It was not, at first, one of the greater or more wealthy houses of Eng' land; but land and beeves' speedily came to the various branches, especially to that which migrated, as the result of a marriage with a great heiress, to the north of Devonshire; and, , whatever we may think of the Hastings story, the posy' of the race, as old Westcote calls it, expresses what is certainly true with regard to such Norman families as that of the Fortescues during the earlier days of their settlement in the West. • Forte scutum salus ducum.' The gradual approach of Normans and English after the Conquest was materially influenced, and the final blending of the races was no doubt hastened, by the spreading through the country of these smaller landowners. They were brought into sharper and closer contact with the English than the greater lords, who were seldom for any length
* Glanville's treatise is, however, of a very different aim and character; nor can the famous Dialogus de Scaccario' of Richard Fitz-Nigel be compared, in any fair sense, with Fortescue's book.
of time in one place. They more speedily adopted old English feelings and sympathies; and the great leaders were indebted to them for much of their best strength during the struggles and the trials which ended in renewing the England of former days, and in welding into one strong-hearted people the conquerors and the conquered.
There are few more interesting books than those which, like the Lives of the Lindsays' or the delightful Memorie of
the Somervilles' edited by Sir Walter Scott, deal with the history of a single family so far as it can be traced, and enable us to follow (as is almost always possible) the common character and tendencies which, displaying themselves in different fashions and in various proportions, descend through all the generations from the founder-theSholto Douglas' who first emerges from the dark-to the many-acred peer or commoner of the present day. There exists, we believe-its whereabouts we do not care to disclose—the pictorial record of a Kentish family, in which, passing from sire to son, its members are represented
in their habits as they lived,' taking part in the various events of the centuries to which their respective fates had conducted them. The series begins with the opposition of a valiant chief to the landing of Cæsar--for we are to suppose that the race thus recorded was one to which Derings and Colepepers are of yesterday. But from beginning to end, whether the costume be a ' painted vest' won from some · naked Pict,' the chain-mail of the Crusaders, the ruff and trunk hose of Elizabeth, the flowing periwig and ribbons of the Pepysian era, or the well-powdered Ramillies of the Georgian, the same remarkable nose, and the same countenance of bland, well-satisfied stupidity, distinguish the long procession. On such very marked characteristics as these, whether corporeal or mental, we do not mean to insist, but we do maintain that the general turn and ter rament of an ancient house are often, when we have the means of tracing them, not less clearly evident than the likeness which may run through the family portraits in the great gallery. In the beautiful volumes which Lord Clermont: has privately printed we have the records of one of the most ancient and honourable houses in England ; and we believe that we may trace the same type of character, and that a very high and noble one, showing itself with more or less distinctness, in nearly all its more prominent members. Lord Clermont's memorials of the Fortescues are contained in two very handsome folios, and are enriched with illustrations of all kinds heraldic and topographical, engravings from authentic portraits, examples of handwriting, and facsimiles of ancient manu
scripts. The first volume contains a most careful life of the Lord Chief Justice, whom we regard as displaying the most pronounced type of the family character, together with a complete edition (with English translation) of his works, the De
Naturâ Legis Naturæ, the ‘De Laudibus Legum Angliæ,' the • De Dominio Regali et Politico,' and some smaller treatises. In the second volume the history of the family is traced through all its branches, and everything that could be recovered concerning the lives of the more distinguished Fortescues has been collected and preserved. The cost of preparing and of printing two such volumes must have been considerable. "The labour was no doubt one of love; yet the mere arrangement of materials so extensive, and gathered from so many quarters, cannot but have taken much time and care, and the power of producing from them a narrative so pleasant and so readable is not given to every writer of family history. The book has not been published; but, with great liberality, copies have been sent to the chief public libraries of the country, so that the valuable results of Lord Clermont's labours are accessible to others besides members of the family, who must necessarily regard them with more interest than the rest of the world.
When we first get clear sight of the Fortescues we find them settled at Wimondeston or Wimpstone, in the parish of Modbury, in South Devon. This is late in the twelfth century; and there exists, or did exist, a confirmation of Wimp- stone by King John to a Sir John Fortescue, who, during the troubles of that reign, had been active on the side of the king. At what time the first Fortescue appeared in Devonshire is uncertain. The Domesday Survey gives us no help, and the family tradition, which Lord Clermont pronounces venerable . and almost uniform,' can only be taken for what it is worth. This asserts that a certain Richard le Fort, Duke William's cupbearer, fought by the side of his master at Senlac (Hastings), and after the duke had three horses killed under him, protected him with his shield, and thus saved his life. He was thenceforward known as Richard le Fort-escu, or 'strong • shield.'. It is true that a Richard le Fort or Forz appears in .certain copies of the Battle Abbey Roll, but this tells us little. The tradition adds that this first Fort-escu returned to Nor
* It is true that William, at different stages of the battle, had three horses killed under him. The authorities are William of Poitou and William of Malmesbury (quoted by Freeman, 'Norm. Conq.,' iii. 485); but there is nowhere any record of such an action as that attributed to the · Fort-escu.'