English Literature » Jonathan Swift » On the Death of Dr. Swift

On the Death of Dr. Swift by


Occasioned by reading the following maxim in Rochefoucauld, "Dans l'adversite de nos meilleurs amis, nous trouvons toujours quelque chose, qui ne nous deplait pas."

This maxim was No. 99 in the edition of 1665, and was one of those suppressed by the author in his later editions. In the edition published by Didot Freres, 1864, it is No. 15 in the first supplement. See it commented upon by Lord Chesterfield in a letter to his son, Sept. 5, 1748, where he takes a similar view to that expressed by Swift.–W. E. B.


AS Rochefoucauld his maxims drew
From nature, I believe 'em true:
They argue no corrupted mind
In him; the fault is in mankind.

  This maxim more than all the rest
Is thought too base for human breast:
"In all distresses of our friends,
We first consult our private ends;
While nature, kindly bent to ease us,
Points out some circumstance to please us."

  If this perhaps your patience move,
Let reason and experience prove.
We all behold with envious eyes
Our equal raised above our size.
Who would not at a crowded show
Stand high himself, keep others low?
I love my friend as well as you:
[2]But why should he obstruct my view?
Then let me have the higher post:
[3]Suppose it but an inch at most.
If in battle you should find
One whom you love of all mankind,
Had some heroic action done,
A champion kill'd, or trophy won;
Rather than thus be overtopt,
Would you not wish his laurels cropt?
Dear honest Ned is in the gout,
Lies rackt with pain, and you without:
How patiently you hear him groan!
How glad the case is not your own!

  What poet would not grieve to see
His breth'ren write as well as he?
But rather than they should excel,
He'd wish his rivals all in hell.

  Her end when Emulation misses,
She turns to Envy, stings and hisses:
The strongest friendship yields to pride,
Unless the odds be on our side.
Vain human kind! fantastic race!
Thy various follies who can trace?
Self-love, ambition, envy, pride,
Their empire in our hearts divide.
Give others riches, power, and station,
'Tis all on me an usurpation.
I have no title to aspire;
Yet, when you sink, I seem the higher.
In Pope I cannot read a line,
But with a sigh I wish it mine;
When he can in one couplet fix
More sense than I can do in six;
It gives me such a jealous fit,
I cry, "Pox take him and his wit!"
[4]I grieve to be outdone by Gay
In my own hum'rous biting way.
Arbuthnot is no more my friend,
Who dares to irony pretend,
Which I was born to introduce,
Refin'd it first, and shew'd its use.
St. John, as well as Pultney, knows
That I had some repute for prose;
And, till they drove me out of date
Could maul a minister of state.
If they have mortify'd my pride,
And made me throw my pen aside;
If with such talents Heav'n has blest 'em,
Have I not reason to detest 'em?

  To all my foes, dear Fortune, send
Thy gifts; but never to my friend:
I tamely can endure the first;
But this with envy makes me burst.

  Thus much may serve by way of proem:
Proceed we therefore to our poem.

  The time is not remote, when I
Must by the course of nature die;
When, I foresee, my special friends
Will try to find their private ends:
Tho' it is hardly understood
Which way my death can do them good,
Yet thus, methinks, I hear 'em speak:
"See, how the Dean begins to break!
Poor gentleman, he droops apace!
You plainly find it in his face.
That old vertigo in his head
Will never leave him till he's dead.
Besides, his memory decays:
He recollects not what he says;
He cannot call his friends to mind:
Forgets the place where last he din'd;
Plyes you with stories o'er and o'er;
He told them fifty times before.
How does he fancy we can sit
To hear his out-of-fashion'd wit?
But he takes up with younger folks,
Who for his wine will bear his jokes.
Faith! he must make his stories shorter,
Or change his comrades once a quarter:
In half the time he talks them round,
There must another set be found.

  "For poetry he's past his prime:
He takes an hour to find a rhyme;
His fire is out, his wit decay'd,
His fancy sunk, his Muse a jade.
I'd have him throw away his pen;–
But there's no talking to some men!"

  And then their tenderness appears,
By adding largely to my years;
"He's older than he would be reckon'd,
And well remembers Charles the Second.
He hardly drinks a pint of wine;
And that, I doubt, is no good sign.
His stomach too begins to fail:
Last year we thought him strong and hale;
But now he's quite another thing:
I wish he may hold out till spring!"
Then hug themselves, and reason thus:
"It is not yet so bad with us!"

  In such a case, they talk in tropes,
And by their fears express their hopes:
Some great misfortune to portend,
No enemy can match a friend.
With all the kindness they profess,
The merit of a lucky guess
(When daily how d'ye's come of course,
And servants answer, "Worse and worse!")
Wou'd please 'em better, than to tell,
That, "God be prais'd, the Dean is well."
Then he, who prophecy'd the best,
Approves his foresight to the rest:
"You know I always fear'd the worst,
And often told you so at first."
He'd rather chuse that I should die,
Than his prediction prove a lie.
Not one foretells I shall recover;
But all agree to give me over.

  Yet, shou'd some neighbour feel a pain
Just in the parts where I complain;
How many a message would he send!
What hearty prayers that I should mend!
Inquire what regimen I kept;
What gave me ease, and how I slept?
And more lament when I was dead,
Than all the sniv'llers round my bed.

  My good companions, never fear;
For though you may mistake a year,
Though your prognostics run too fast,
They must be verify'd at last.

  Behold the fatal day arrive!
"How is the Dean?"–"He's just alive."
Now the departing prayer is read;
"He hardly breathes."–"The Dean is dead."

  Before the Passing-bell begun,
The news thro' half the town has run.
"O! may we all for death prepare!
What has he left? and who's his heir?"–
"I know no more than what the news is;
'Tis all bequeath'd to public uses."–
"To public use! a perfect whim!
What had the public done for him?
Mere envy, avarice, and pride:
He gave it all–but first he died.
And had the Dean, in all the nation,
No worthy friend, no poor relation?
So ready to do strangers good,
Forgetting his own flesh and blood!"

  Now, Grub-Street wits are all employ'd;
With elegies the town is cloy'd:
Some paragraph in ev'ry paper
To curse the Dean, or bless the Drapier.[5]

  The doctors, tender of their fame,
Wisely on me lay all the blame:
"We must confess, his case was nice;
But he would never take advice.
Had he been ruled, for aught appears,
He might have lived these twenty years;
For, when we open'd him, we found,
That all his vital parts were sound."

  From Dublin soon to London spread,
'Tis told at court,[6] "the Dean is dead."
Kind Lady Suffolk,[7] in the spleen,
Runs laughing up to tell the queen.
The queen, so gracious, mild, and good,
Cries, "Is he gone! 'tis time he shou'd.
He's dead, you say; why, let him rot:
I'm glad the medals[8] were forgot.
I promised him, I own; but when?
I only was a princess then;
But now, as consort of a king,
You know, 'tis quite a different thing."
Now Chartres,[9] at Sir Robert's levee,
Tells with a sneer the tidings heavy:
"Why, is he dead without his shoes,"
Cries Bob,[10] "I'm sorry for the news:
O, were the wretch but living still,
And in his place my good friend Will![11]
Or had a mitre on his head,
Provided Bolingbroke[12] were dead!"
Now Curll[13] his shop from rubbish drains:
Three genuine tomes of Swift's remains!
And then, to make them pass the glibber,
Revised by Tibbalds, Moore, and Cibber.[14]
He'll treat me as he does my betters,
Publish my will, my life, my letters:[15]
Revive the libels born to die;
Which Pope must bear, as well as I.

  Here shift the scene, to represent
How those I love my death lament.
Poor Pope will grieve a month, and Gay
A week, and Arbuthnot a day.

  St. John himself will scarce forbear
To bite his pen, and drop a tear.
The rest will give a shrug, and cry,
"I'm sorry–but we all must die!"

  Indifference, clad in Wisdom's guise,
All fortitude of mind supplies:
For how can stony bowels melt
In those who never pity felt!
When we are lash'd, they kiss the rod,
Resigning to the will of God.

  The fools, my juniors by a year,
Are tortur'd with suspense and fear;
Who wisely thought my age a screen,
When death approach'd, to stand between:
The screen removed, their hearts are trembling;
They mourn for me without dissembling.

  My female friends, whose tender hearts
Have better learn'd to act their parts,
Receive the news in doleful dumps:
"The Dean is dead: (and what is trumps?)
Then, Lord have mercy on his soul!
(Ladies, I'll venture for the vole.)[16]
Six deans, they say, must bear the pall:
(I wish I knew what king to call.)
Madam, your husband will attend
The funeral of so good a friend.
No, madam, 'tis a shocking sight:
And he's engaged to-morrow night:
My Lady Club wou'd take it ill,
If he shou'd fail her at quadrille.
He loved the Dean–(I lead a heart,)
But dearest friends, they say, must part.
His time was come: he ran his race;
We hope he's in a better place."

  Why do we grieve that friends should die?
No loss more easy to supply.
One year is past; a different scene!
No further mention of the Dean;
Who now, alas! no more is miss'd,
Than if he never did exist.
Where's now this fav'rite of Apollo!
Departed:–and his works must follow;
Must undergo the common fate;
His kind of wit is out of date.

  Some country squire to Lintot[17] goes,
Inquires for "Swift in Verse and Prose."
Says Lintot, "I have heard the name;
He died a year ago."–"The same."
He searches all the shop in vain.
"Sir, you may find them in Duck-lane;[18]
I sent them with a load of books,
Last Monday to the pastry-cook's.
To fancy they could live a year!
I find you're but a stranger here.
The Dean was famous in his time,
And had a kind of knack at rhyme.
His way of writing now is past;
The town has got a better taste;
I keep no antiquated stuff,
But spick and span I have enough.
Pray do but give me leave to show 'em;
Here's Colley Cibber's birth-day poem.
This ode you never yet have seen,
By Stephen Duck,[19] upon the queen.
Then here's a letter finely penned
Against the Craftsman and his friend:
It clearly shows that all reflection
On ministers is disaffection.
Next, here's Sir Robert's vindication,[20]
And Mr. Henley's last oration.[21]
The hawkers have not got them yet:
Your honour please to buy a set?

  "Here's Woolston's[22] tracts, the twelfth edition;
'Tis read by every politician:
The country members, when in town,
To all their boroughs send them down;
You never met a thing so smart;
The courtiers have them all by heart:
Those maids of honour (who can read),
Are taught to use them for their creed.[23]
The rev'rend author's good intention
Has been rewarded with a pension.
He does an honour to his gown,
By bravely running priestcraft down:
He shows, as sure as God's in Gloucester,
That Moses was a grand impostor;
That all his miracles were cheats,
Perform'd as jugglers do their feats:
The church had never such a writer;
A shame he has not got a mitre!"

  Suppose me dead; and then suppose
A club assembled at the Rose;
Where, from discourse of this and that,
I grow the subject of their chat.
And while they toss my name about,
With favour some, and some without,
One, quite indiff'rent in the cause,
My character impartial draws:

  The Dean, if we believe report,
Was never ill receiv'd at court.
As for his works in verse and prose
I own myself no judge of those;
Nor can I tell what critics thought 'em:
But this I know, all people bought 'em.
As with a moral view design'd
To cure the vices of mankind:
And, if he often miss'd his aim,
The world must own it, to their shame,
The praise is his, and theirs the blame.
"Sir, I have heard another story:
He was a most confounded Tory,
And grew, or he is much belied,
Extremely dull, before he died."

  Can we the Drapier then forget?
Is not our nation in his debt?
'Twas he that writ the Drapier's letters!–

  "He should have left them for his betters,
We had a hundred abler men,
Nor need depend upon his pen.–
Say what you will about his reading,
You never can defend his breeding;
Who in his satires running riot,
Could never leave the world in quiet;
Attacking, when he took the whim,
Court, city, camp–all one to him.–

  "But why should he, except he slobber't,
Offend our patriot, great Sir Robert,
Whose counsels aid the sov'reign power
To save the nation every hour?
What scenes of evil he unravels
In satires, libels, lying travels!
Not sparing his own clergy-cloth,
But eats into it, like a moth!"
His vein, ironically grave,
Exposed the fool, and lash'd the knave.
To steal a hint was never known,
But what he writ was all his own.[24]

  "He never thought an honour done him,
Because a duke was proud to own him,
Would rather slip aside and chuse
To talk with wits in dirty shoes;
Despised the fools with stars and garters,
So often seen caressing Chartres.[25]
He never courted men in station,
Nor persons held in admiration;
Of no man's greatness was afraid,
Because he sought for no man's aid.
Though trusted long in great affairs
He gave himself no haughty airs:
Without regarding private ends,
Spent all his credit for his friends;
And only chose the wise and good;
No flatterers; no allies in blood:
But succour'd virtue in distress,
And seldom fail'd of good success;
As numbers in their hearts must own,
Who, but for him, had been unknown.

  "With princes kept a due decorum,
But never stood in awe before 'em.
He follow'd David's lesson just;
In princes never put thy trust:
And would you make him truly sour,
Provoke him with a slave in power.
The Irish senate if you named,
With what impatience he declaim'd!
Fair LIBERTY was all his cry,
For her he stood prepared to die;
For her he boldly stood alone;
For her he oft exposed his own.
Two kingdoms,[26] just as faction led,
Had set a price upon his head;
But not a traitor could be found,
To sell him for six hundred pound.

  "Had he but spared his tongue and pen
He might have rose like other men:
But power was never in his thought,
And wealth he valued not a groat:
Ingratitude he often found,
And pitied those who meant the wound:
But kept the tenor of his mind,
To merit well of human kind:
Nor made a sacrifice of those
Who still were true, to please his foes.
He labour'd many a fruitless hour,
To reconcile his friends in power;
Saw mischief by a faction brewing,
While they pursued each other's ruin.
But finding vain was all his care,
He left the court in mere despair.[27]

  "And, oh! how short are human schemes!
Here ended all our golden dreams.
What St. John's skill in state affairs,
What Ormond's valour, Oxford's cares,
To save their sinking country lent,
Was all destroy'd by one event.
Too soon that precious life was ended,
On which alone our weal depended.[28]
When up a dangerous faction starts,[29]
With wrath and vengeance in their hearts;
By solemn League and Cov'nant bound,
To ruin, slaughter, and confound;
To turn religion to a fable,
And make the government a Babel;
Pervert the laws, disgrace the gown,
Corrupt the senate, rob the crown;
To sacrifice old England's glory,
And make her infamous in story:
When such a tempest shook the land,
How could unguarded Virtue stand!
With horror, grief, despair, the Dean
Beheld the dire destructive scene:
His friends in exile, or the tower,
Himself[30] within the frown of power,
Pursued by base envenom'd pens,
Far to the land of slaves and fens;[31]
A servile race in folly nursed,
Who truckle most, when treated worst.
"By innocence and resolution,
He bore continual persecution;
While numbers to preferment rose,
Whose merits were, to be his foes;
When ev'n his own familiar friends,
Intent upon their private ends,
Like renegadoes now he feels,
Against him lifting up their heels.

  "The Dean did, by his pen, defeat
An infamous destructive cheat;[32]
Taught fools their int'rest how to know,
And gave them arms to ward the blow.
Envy has own'd it was his doing,
To save that hapless land from ruin;
While they who at the steerage stood,
And reap'd the profit, sought his blood.

  "To save them from their evil fate,
In him was held a crime of state,
A wicked monster on the bench,[33]
Whose fury blood could never quench;
As vile and profligate a villain,
As modern Scroggs, or old Tresilian:[34]
Who long all justice had discarded,
Nor fear'd he God, nor man regarded;
Vow'd on the Dean his rage to vent,
And make him of his zeal repent:
But Heaven his innocence defends,
The grateful people stand his friends;
Not strains of law, nor judge's frown,
Nor topics brought to please the crown,
Nor witness hired, nor jury pick'd,
Prevail to bring him in convict.

  "In exile,[35] with a steady heart,
He spent his life's declining part;
Where folly, pride, and faction sway,
Remote from St. John, Pope, and Gay.
Alas, poor Dean! his only scope
Was to be held a misanthrope.
This into gen'ral odium drew him,
Which if he liked, much good may't do him.
His zeal was not to lash our crimes,
But discontent against the times:
For had we made him timely offers
To raise his post, or fill his coffers,
Perhaps he might have truckled down,
Like other brethren of his gown.
For party he would scarce have bled:
I say no more–because he's dead.
What writings has he left behind?
I hear, they're of a different kind;
A few in verse; but most in prose–
Some high-flown pamphlets, I suppose;–
All scribbled in the worst of times,
To palliate his friend Oxford's crimes,
To praise Queen Anne, nay more, defend her,
As never fav'ring the Pretender;
Or libels yet conceal'd from sight,
Against the court to show his spite;
Perhaps his travels, part the third;
A lie at every second word–
Offensive to a loyal ear:
But not one sermon, you may swear."
His friendships there, to few confined
Were always of the middling kind;[36]
No fools of rank, a mongrel breed,
Who fain would pass for lords indeed:
Where titles give no right or power,[37]
And peerage is a wither'd flower;
He would have held it a disgrace,
If such a wretch had known his face.
On rural squires, that kingdom's bane,
He vented oft his wrath in vain;
[Biennial[38]] squires to market brought;
Who sell their souls and [votes] for nought;
The [nation stripped,] go joyful back,
To —- the church, their tenants rack,
Go snacks with [rogues and rapparees,][39]
And keep the peace to pick up fees;
In every job to have a share,
A gaol or barrack to repair;
And turn the tax for public roads,
Commodious to their own abodes.[40]

  "Perhaps I may allow the Dean,
Had too much satire in his vein;
And seem'd determined not to starve it,
Because no age could more deserve it.
Yet malice never was his aim;
He lash'd the vice, but spared the name;
No individual could resent,
Where thousands equally were meant;
His satire points at no defect,
But what all mortals may correct;
For he abhorr'd that senseless tribe
Who call it humour when they gibe:
He spared a hump, or crooked nose,
Whose owners set not up for beaux.
True genuine dulness moved his pity,
Unless it offer'd to be witty.
Those who their ignorance confest,
He ne'er offended with a jest;
But laugh'd to hear an idiot quote
A verse from Horace learn'd by rote.

  "Vice, if it e'er can be abash'd,
Must be or ridiculed or lash'd.
If you resent it, who's to blame?
He neither knew you nor your name.
Should vice expect to 'scape rebuke,
Because its owner is a duke?

  "He knew an hundred pleasant stories,
With all the turns of Whigs and Tories:
Was cheerful to his dying day;
And friends would let him have his way.

  "He gave the little wealth he had
To build a house for fools and mad;
And show'd by one satiric touch,
No nation wanted it so much.
That kingdom he hath left his debtor,
I wish it soon may have a better."
And, since you dread no farther lashes
Methinks you may forgive his ashes.

[Footnote 1: This poem was first written about 1731 but was not then intended to be published; and having been shown by Swift to all his "common acquaintance indifferently," some "friend," probably Pilkington, remembered enough of it to concoct the poem called "The Life and Character of Dr. Swift, written by himself," which was published in London in 1733, and reprinted in Dublin.

In a letter to Pope, dated 1 May, that year, the Dean complained seriously about the imposture, saying, "it shall not provoke me to print the true one, which indeed is not proper to be seen till I can be seen no more." See Swift to Pope, in Pope's Works, edit. Elwin and Courthope, vii, 307. The poem was subsequently published by Faulkner with the Dean's permission. It is now printed from a copy of the original edition, with corrections in Swift's hand, which I found in the Forster collection.–W. E. B.]

[Footnote 2: Var. "But would not have him stop my view."]

[Footnote 3: Var. "I ask but for an inch at most."]

[Footnote 4: Var. "Why must I be outdone by Gay."]

[Footnote 5: The author supposes that the scribblers of the prevailing party, which he always opposed, will libel him after his death; but that others will remember the service he had done to Ireland, under the name of M. B. Drapier, by utterly defeating the destructive project of Wood's halfpence, in five letters to the people of Ireland, at that time read universally, and convincing every reader.]

[Footnote 6: The Dean supposeth himself to die in Ireland.]

[Footnote 7: Mrs. Howard, afterwards Countess of Suffolk, then of the bedchamber to the queen, professed much favour for the Dean. The queen, then princess, sent a dozen times to the Dean (then in London), with her commands to attend her; which at last he did, by advice of all his friends. She often sent for him afterwards, and always treated him very graciously. He taxed her with a present worth L10, which she promised before he should return to Ireland; but on his taking leave the medals were not ready.

A letter from Swift to Lady Suffolk, 21st November, 1730, bears out this note.–W. E. B.]

[Footnote 8: The medals were to be sent to the Dean in four months; but she forgot or thought them too dear. The Dean, being in Ireland, sent Mrs. Howard a piece of plaid made in that kingdom, which the queen seeing took it from her and wore it herself and sent to the Dean for as much as would clothe herself and children, desiring he would send the charge of it; he did the former, it cost L35, but he said he would have nothing except the medals; he went next summer to England, and was treated as usual, and she being then queen, the Dean was promised a settlement in England, but returned as he went, and instead of receiving of her intended favours or the medals, hath been ever since under Her Majesty's displeasure.]

[Footnote 9: Chartres is a most infamous vile scoundrel, grown from a footboy, or worse, to a prodigious fortune, both in England and Scotland. He had a way of insinuating himself into all ministers, under every change, either as pimp, flatterer, or informer. He was tried at seventy for a rape, and came off by sacrificing a great part of his fortune. He is since dead; but this poem still preserves the scene and time it was writ in.–Dublin Edition, and see ante, p. 191.–W. E. B.]

[Footnote 10: Sir Robert Walpole, chief minister of state, treated the Dean in 1726 with great distinction; invited him to dinner at Chelsea, with the Dean's friends chosen on purpose: appointed an hour to talk with him of Ireland, to which kingdom and people the Dean found him no great friend; for he defended Wood's project of halfpence, etc. The Dean would see him no more; and upon his next year's return to England, Sir Robert, on an accidental meeting, only made a civil compliment, and never invited him again.]

[Footnote 11: Mr. William Pultney, from being Sir Robert's intimate friend, detesting his administration, became his mortal enemy and joined with my Lord Bolingbroke, to expose him in an excellent paper called the Craftsman, which is still continued.]

[Footnote 12: Henry St. John, Viscount Bolingbroke, Secretary of State to Queen Anne, of blessed memory. He is reckoned the most universal genius in Europe. Walpole, dreading his abilities, treated him most injuriously working with King George I, who forgot his promise of restoring the said lord, upon the restless importunity of Sir Robert Walpole.]

[Footnote 13: Curll hath been the most infamous bookseller of any age or country. His character, in part, may be found in Mr. Pope's "Dunciad." He published three volumes, all charged on the Dean, who never writ three pages of them. He hath used many of the Dean's friends in almost as vile a manner.]

[Footnote 14: Three stupid verse-writers in London; the last, to the shame of the court, and the highest disgrace to wit and learning, was made laureate. Moore, commonly called Jemmy Moore, son of Arthur Moore, whose father was jailor of Monaghan, in Ireland. See the character of Jemmy Moore, and Tibbalds [Theobald], in the "Dunciad."]

[Footnote 15: Curll is notoriously infamous for publishing the lives, letters, and last wills and testaments of the nobility and ministers of state, as well as of all the rogues who are hanged at Tyburn. He hath been in custody of the House of Lords, for publishing or forging the letters of many peers, which made the Lords enter a resolution in their journal-book, that no life or writings of any lord should be published, without the consent of the next heir-at-law or license from their House.]

[Footnote 16: The play by which the dealer may win or lose all the tricks. See Hoyle on "Quadrille."–W. E. B.]

[Footnote 17: See post, p. 267.]

[Footnote 18: A place in London, where old books are sold.]

[Footnote 19: See ante "On Stephen Duck, the Thresher Poet," p. 192.]

[Footnote 20: Walpole hath a set of party scribblers, who do nothing but write in his defence.]

[Footnote 21: Henley is a clergyman, who, wanting both merit and luck to get preferment, or even to keep his curacy in the established church, formed a new conventicle, which he called an Oratory. There, at set times, he delivereth strange speeches, compiled by himself and his associates, who share the profit with him. Every hearer payeth a shilling each day for admittance. He is an absolute dunce, but generally reported crazy.]

[Footnote 22: See ante, p. 188.–W. E. B.]

[Footnote 23: See ante, p. 188. There is some confusion here betwixt Woolston and Wollaston, whose book, the "Religion of Nature delineated," was much talked of and fashionable. See a letter from Pope to Bethell in Pope's correspondence, Pope's Works, edit. Elwin and Courthope, ix, p. 149.–W. E. B.]

[Footnote 24: Denham's elegy on Cowley:

"To him no author was unknown,
Yet what he wrote was all his own."]

[Footnote 25: See ante, pp. 192 and 252.]

[Footnote 26: In the year 1713, the late queen was prevailed with, by an address of the House of Lords in England, to publish a proclamation, promising L300 to whatever person would discover the author of a pamphlet called "The Public Spirit of the Whigs"; and in Ireland, in the year 1724, Lord Carteret, at his first coming into the government, was prevailed on to issue a proclamation for promising the like reward of L300 to any person who would discover the author of a pamphlet, called "The Drapier's Fourth Letter," etc., writ against that destructive project of coining halfpence for Ireland; but in neither kingdom was the Dean discovered.]

[Footnote 27: Queen Anne's ministry fell to variance from the first year after their ministry began; Harcourt, the chancellor, and Lord Bolingbroke, the secretary, were discontented with the treasurer Oxford, for his too much mildness to the Whig party; this quarrel grew higher every day till the queen's death. The Dean, who was the only person that endeavoured to reconcile them, found it impossible, and thereupon retired to the country about ten weeks before that event: upon which he returned to his deanery in Dublin, where for many years he was worryed by the new people in power, and had hundreds of libels writ against him in England.]

[Footnote 28: In the height of the quarrel between the ministers, the queen died.]

[Footnote 29: Upon Queen Anne's death, the Whig faction was restored to power, which they exercised with the utmost rage and revenge; impeached and banished the chief leaders of the Church party, and stripped all their adherents of what employments they had; after which England was never known to make so mean a figure in Europe. The greatest preferments in the Church, in both kingdoms, were given to the most ignorant men. Fanaticks were publickly caressed, Ireland utterly ruined and enslaved, only great ministers heaping up millions; and so affairs continue, and are likely to remain so.]

[Footnote 30: Upon the queen's death, the Dean returned to live in Dublin at his Deanery House. Numberless libels were written against him in England as a Jacobite; he was insulted in the street, and at night he was forced to be attended by his servants armed.]

[Footnote 31: Ireland.]

[Footnote 32: One Wood, a hardware-man from England, had a patent for coining copper halfpence in Ireland, to the sum of L108,000, which, in the consequence, must leave that kingdom without gold or silver. See The Drapier's Letters, "Prose Works," vol. vi.–W. E. B.]

[Footnote 33: Whitshed was then chief justice. He had some years before prosecuted a printer for a pamphlet writ by the Dean, to persuade the people of Ireland to wear their own manufactures. Whitshed sent the jury down eleven times, and kept them nine hours, until they were forced to bring in a special verdict. He sat afterwards on the trial of the printer of the Drapier's Fourth Letter; but the jury, against all he could say or swear, threw out the bill. All the kingdom took the Drapier's part, except the courtiers, or those who expected places. The Drapier was celebrated in many poems and pamphlets. His sign was set up in most streets of Dublin (where many of them still continue) and in several country towns. This note was written in 1734.–W. E. B.]

[Footnote 34: Scroggs was chief justice under King Charles II. His judgement always varied in state trials according to directions from Court. Tresilian was a wicked judge hanged above three hundred years ago.]

[Footnote 35: In Ireland, which he had reason to call a place of exile; to which country nothing could have driven him but the queen's death, who had determined to fix him in England, in spite of the Duchess of Somerset.]

[Footnote 36: In Ireland the Dean was not acquainted with one single lord, spiritual or temporal. He only conversed with private gentlemen of the clergy or laity, and but a small number of either.]

[Footnote 37: The peers of Ireland lost their jurisdiction by one single act, and tamely submitted to this infamous mark of slavery without the least resentment or remonstrance.]

[Footnote 38: The Parliament, as they call it in Ireland, meet but once in two years, and after having given five times more than they can afford, return home to reimburse themselves by country jobs and oppressions of which some few are mentioned.]

[Footnote 39: The highwaymen in Ireland are, since the late wars there, usually called Rapparees, which was a name given to those Irish soldiers who, in small parties, used at that time to plunder Protestants.]

[Footnote 40: The army in Ireland are lodged in barracks, the building and repairing whereof and other charges, have cost a prodigious sum to that unhappy kingdom.]

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