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and architecture. In his private morals he was altogether unblemished and exemplary. He was merciful, modest, chaste, temperate, religious, personally brave, and we may join the noble historian in saying, 'He was the worthiest gentleman, the best master, the best friend, the best husband, the best father, and the best christian of the age in which he lived.' He had the misfortune to be bred up in high notions of the prerogative which he thought his honour and his duty obliged him to maintain. He lived at a time when the spirit of the people became too mighty for those restraints which the regal power derived from the constitution; and when the tide of fanaticism began to overbear the religion of his country, to which he was conscientiously devoted, he suffered himself to be guided by counsellors, who were not only inferior to himself in knowledge and judgment, but generally proud, partial, and inflexible; and from an excess of conjugal affection, that bordered upon weakness, he paid too much deference to the advice and desires of his consort, who was superstitiously attached to the errours of popery, and importuned him incessantly in favour of the Roman catholics.
Such were the sources of all that misgovernment which was imputed to him during the first fifteen years of his reign. From the beginning of the civil war to his fatal catastrophe, his conduct seems to have been unexceptionable. His infirmities and imperfections have been candidly owned in the course of his narration. He was not very liberal to his dependants; his conversation was not easy, nor his address pleasing; yet the probity of his heart, and the innocence of his manners, won the
affection of all who attended his person, not even excepting those who had the charge of his confinement. In a word, he certainly deserved the epithet of a virtuous prince, though he wanted some of those shining qualities which constitute the character of a great monarch. Smollett.
CHARACTER OF OLIVER CROMWELL.
OLIVER Cromwell was of a robust make and constitution, his aspect manly though clownish. His education extended no further than a superficial knowledge of the Latin tongue, but he inherited great talents from nature; though they were such as he could not have exerted to advantage at any other juncture than that of a civil war, inflamed by religious contests. His character was formed from an amazing conjuncture of enthusiasm, hypocrisy, and ambition. He was possessed of courage and resolution, that overlooked all dangers, and saw no difficulties. He dived into the characters of mankind with wonderful sagacity, whilst he concealed his own purposes, under the impenetrable shield of dissimulation.
He reconciled the most atrocious crimes to the most rigid notions of religious obligations. From the severest exercise of devotion, he relaxed into the most ridiculous and idle buffoonery: yet he preserved the dignity and distance of his character, in the midst of the coarsest familiarity. He was cruel and tyrannic from policy; just and temperate from inclination; perplexed and despicable in his discourse; clear and consummate in his designs;
ridiculous in his reveries; respectable in his conduct; in a word, the strangest compound of villany and virtue, baseness and magnanimity, absurdity and good sense, that we find on record in the annals of mankind. * Noble.
CHARACTER OF CHARLES II.
THUS lived and died king Charles the Second. He was the greatest instance in history of the various revolutions of which any one man seemed capable. He was bred up the first twelve years of his life, with the splendour that became the heir of so great a crown. After that, he passed through eighteen years in great inequalities, unhappy in the war, in the loss of his father, and of the crown of England. While he was abroad at Paris, Colen, or Brussels, he never seemed to lay any thing to heart. He pursued all his diversions, and irregular pleasures, in a free career; and seemed to be as serene under the loss of a crown, as the greatest philosopher could have been. Nor did he willingly hearken to any of those projects, with which, he complained often, his chancellor persecuted
Cromwell died more than five millions in debt; though the parliament had left him in the treasury above five hundred thousand pounds, and in stores to the value of seveu hundred thousand pounds.
Richard, the son of Cromwell, was proclaimed protector in bis room; but Richard, being of a very different disposition to his father, resigned his authority the 22d of April 1659; and soon after signed his abdication in form, and retired to live several years after his resignation, at first on the Continent, and afterwards upon his paternal fortune at home.
him. That in which he seemed most concerned was, to find money for supporting his expense. And it was often said, that if Cromwell would have compounded the matter, and have given him a good round pension, he might have been induced to resign his title to him. During his exile, he delivered himself so entirely to his pleasures, that he became incapable of application. He spent little of his time in reading and study; and yet less in thinking. And in the state his affairs were then in, he accustomed himself to say to every person, and upon all occasions, that which he thought would please most: so that words or promises went very easily from him. And he had so ill an opinion of mankind, that he thought the great art of living and governing was to manage all things and all persons, with a depth of craft and dissimulation. He desired to become absolute, and to overturn both our religion and laws; yet he would neither run the risk, nor give himself the trouble, which so great a design required. He had an appearance of gentleness in his outward deportment; but he seemed to have no bowels nor tenderness in his nature; and in the end of his life he became cruel. Burnet.
CHARACTER OF JAMES II.
In many respects it must be owned, that he was a virtuous man, as well as a good monarch. was frugal of the public money; he encouraged commerce with great attention; he applied himself to naval affairs with success; he supported the
fleet as the glory and protection of England. He was also zealous for the honour of his country; he was capable of supporting its interests with a degree of dignity in the scale of Europe. In his private life he was almost irreproachable; he was an indulgent parent, a tender husband, a generous and steady friend; in his deportment he was affable, though stately; he bestowed favours with peculiar grace; he prevented solicitation by the suddenness of his disposal of places; though scarce any prince was ever so generally deserted, few ever had so many private friends; those who injured him most were the first to implore his forgiveness, and even after they had raised another prince to the throne, they respected his person, and were anxious for his safety. To these virtues he added a steadiness of counsels, a perseverance in his plans, and courage in his enterprises. He was honourable and fair in all his dealings; he was unjust to men in their principles, but never with regard to their property. Though few monarchs ever offended a people more, he yielded to none in his love of his subjects; he even affirmed, that he quitted England to prevent the horrours of a civil war, as much as from fear of a restraint upon his person from the prince of Orange. His great virtue was a strict adherence to facts and truth in all he wrote and said, though some parts of his conduct had rendered his sincerity in his political profession suspected by his enemies.