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Art. I. 1 Voyage performed by the late Earl of Sandwich round the
Mediterranean, in the Years 1738 and 1739. Wricten by Himself.
Then the intention of giving to the public an account of
this voyage was announced, the intelligence was not received with indifference; and indeed, the great abilities, the strength and originality of character, and the powers of entertainment, which the late Earl of Sandwich was known to possess, could not fail to excite for this work a more than common degree of curiosity and expectation. Though it must have been remembered that, when this voyage was performed, the author had scarcely arrived at the age of manhood, and was wholly unschooled in the world; yet, as the experienced mind, penetrating and deeply versed in the knowlege of human nature, must be formed from superior youthful powers of attainment, it would naturally be imagined that the defects arising from inexperience would be materially compensated by that entertainment, which a vigorous fancy is of itself capable of affording. Our account of the work will perhaps shew how far these ideas were well founded.
The volume is dedicated by the editor to the King; and then follow the memoirs of the author's life. We expected an account of the circumstances which prevented the Earl from publishing this voyage; and also of those which, after a lapse of sixty years, have now occasioned its appearance: but for this information we looked in vain. The · Memoirs of the noble author's life’ are almost wholly confined to accounts of a public nature, principally of entrances into and departures from office, with remarks on official transactions, interspersed occaVOL. XXXIII.
sionally with declamation against the Earl's political opponents. We have seldom perused memoirs more barren of anecdote and amusement; and, considering the object of them, we were therefore not a little disappointed in this respect. Indeed there seems to have been a considerable degree of ingenuity, or at least of contrivance, exerted in order to render them so uninteresting. They are elaborately dull.—We shall offer to our reavers a short abstract of such information as we find in them.
John Montague, son of Edward Richard Montague Lord Viscount Hinchingbrook, and Elizabeth only daughter of Alexander Popham, Esq. of Littlecote in the county of Wilts, was born in the parish of St. Martin in the Fields, Middlesex, November 3d, 1718. He was sent at an early age to Eton school; where, under the tuition of Dr. George, he made a considerable proficiency in the classics. The editor observes that a prominent feature, which at this time marked his chasacter, was the reverence which he paid to authority, with entire submission to the discipline of the school;' and an instance of this is related, that happened but the day before he was to leave Eton, and after he had become Earl of Sandwich.
• In 1735, he was admitted, in Trinity College, Cambridge. During his residence in this seat of learning, he and the late Lord Halifax were particularly distinguished for their college exercises ; and were the first noblemen who declaimed publickly in the college chapel. After spending about two years in college, he set out on the voyage which is the subject of this volume. Mr. Ponsonby,late Earl of Besborough, Mr. Nelthorpe, and Mr. Mackye, accompanied his lordship on this agreeable tour, with a Mr. Liobard a painter.'
On his return to England in 1739, he brought with him, as appears by a letter written by him to the Rev. Dr. Dampier, two mummies and eight embalmed ibiss's from the catacombs of Memphis; a large quantity of the famous Egyptian papyrus; fifteen intaglios; five hundred medals, most of them easier to be read than that which has the inscription PAMIN: a marble vase from Athens, and a very long inscription as yet ụndecyphered, on both sides of a piece of marble of about two feet in height.” This marble was afterward presented to Trinity College, and the inscription has been explained by the late learned Dr. Taylor.
Being now of age, he took his seat in the House of Lords, and in the same year was chosen High Steward of the corporation of Huntingdon. The manner in which his marriage is noticed sufficiently marks that it was not intended to introduce much of a private nature into these memoirs. It may not be improper,' says the editor, to mention in this place a domestic occurrence. March 14th, 1740-1 he received the hand of the
Hon. Dorothy Fane, third daughter of Lord Viscount Fane of the kingdom of Ireland.'
The Earl began his political career by joining the party then in opposition to Sir Robert Walpole. On the formation of the ministry distinguished by the appellation of Broad-Bottom, he became a member of the administration, and was appointed second Lord of the Admiralty, December 15th, 1744. In consequence of the active part which he took in raising men to oppose the pretender in the rebellion of 1745, he obtained rank in the army. In August 1746, he was appointed plenipotentiary to the congress to be holden at Breda; and in the next year his powers were renewed, and continued till the definitive treaty of peace was signed at Aix la Chapelle in October 1748. On his return, he was sworn of the privy council, and appointed first Lord of the Admiralty; and on the King's embarking for Hanover, he was declared one of the Lords Justices during his Majesty's absence. In June 1751, he was displaced from the Admiralty, and did not again hold any public office till the year 1755, when he became one of the joint Vice Treasurers of Ireland. In April 1763, he was again appointed to the Admiralty, as first Lord; and the death of Lord Hardwicke causing a vacancy in the office of High Steward of the University of Cambridge, Lord Sandwich became a candidate to succeed him, but failed, after a very close contest. In 1765 he was again out of office, but in 1768 was made joint Post Master General with Lord Le Despened Tn January 1778, under Lord North's administration, he was again appointed first Lord of the Admiralty, which post he held above eleven years. The memoirs give also a list of honours, less public, conferred at different times on the noble Earl. He was an elder brother of the Trinity House, a Governor of the Charter House, of Christ's Hospital, of the London Hospital, &c. &c. -Of his official conduct, the part which relates to the Admiralty appears to be of the most importance, and also that which redounded most to his credit. He reformed great abuses in the dock-yards; increased the establishment of the marines; set the example of annual visitations to the dock-yards; was the promoter and patron of several voyages on discovery; and it may, we believe, with truth be added that his attention to and knowlege of the duties of that department have never been exceeded.
The events of the American war occasioning a removal of the ministry in March 1782, Lord Sandwich afterward held no active employment under government, during the remainder of his life. We shall give an extract from his character as a peer
of parliament, which, the editor informs us, has been obligingly furnished, drawn by the hand of an able master.'
· The Earl of Sandwich was rather to be considered as an able and an intelligent speaker, than a brilliant and eloquent orator. In his early parliamentary career, he displayed uncommon knowledge of the sort of coniposition adapted to make an impression on a popular assembly; and from a happy choice of words, and a judicious arrangement of his argument, he seldom spoke without producing a sensible effect on the mind of every impartial auditor. In the latter part of his political life, and especially during the American war, his harangues were less remarkable for their grace and ornament, than for sound sense, and the valuable and appropriate information which they communicated. His speeches therefore were regarded as the lessons of experience and wisdom.'
• Whenever he rose, the House was assured that he had something material to communicate: he was accordingly listened to with attention, and seldom sat down without furnishing their Lordships with facts at once important and interesting ; of which no other peer was so perfectly-master as himself.'-
Concerning the private character of the Earl, the editor has borne testimony in general terns to the easy politeness and the affability of his manners; to his cheerfulness and hospitality; to the activity of his disposition; and to his readiness to perform acts of kindness.-A description is given of his musical pursuits, which were followed with uncommon eagerness and coristancy; principally at his own seat. I do not believe,' says the editor, that' there ever was an instance, either before or since, of six oratorios being performed for six successive nights by the same band.'—Every oratorio which was performed in the evening, was rehearsed throughout in the morning. After dinner, catches and glees went round with a spirit and effect never felt before, till every body was summoned by a signal to the opening of the performance. This lasted till supper was on the table, after which catches and glees were renewed with the same hilarity as in the earlier part of the day.'
We do not recollect how long Orpheus played, before Pluto was content that he should depart: but we doubt whether his performance extended throughout the week.' We are here told that the accounts of the bodily fatigue suffered by the greater part of the band would hardly be believed, if many persons still living could not bear testimony to their truth. * These meetings were continued for several years, with unrivalled splendour and festivity.'
The Earl lived in the calm satisfaction of a private station,' little more than seven years. In the autumn of 1791, a complaint in the bowels, to which he had been subject, became more than usually troublesome. He went to Bath, to try the
efficacy of the waters : but, receiving no benefit, he returned to his house in town in the latter end of February 1792.
1. He was not sensible of his danger till within a few days before his death, when some very alarming symptoms convinced his mind, not yet impaired, that his recovery was no longer to be hoped for. He received the intimation with firmness. During even the last stages of his illness, he frequently conversed on public affairs, with the same reach of thought and perspicuity of expression as he had at any time been accustomed to do.' • After languishing a few days, he expired on the 30th of April, 1792, with perfect composure and resignation.”
Such is the vsubstance of the particulars must worthy of notice in the memoirs. The information which they have supplied we do not slight: but more might reasonably have been expected in forty quarto pages, employed on the life of a person who was distinguished in so many respects, who was so much in the world, whose disposition was so convivial, and whose resolute habits of application left no hours to indolence, but devoted every one to business or to pleasure.
The narrative of the voyage begins at Leghorn; where the noble author embarked on board an English ship called the Anne, of about 300 tons, and mounting 16 guns, on the 12th of July N. S. 1738. He gives a description of the port of Lega horn, and of the navigation along the coast of Italy. We are informed that a tower built on a small sandy island, called the Malhora, in the outer road of Leghorn, was erected on a message sent to the Grand Duke by Queen Anne; who upon the Restoration, (an English seventy gun ship being lost there,) let him know, that if he would not, she would send and build a sea-mark there herself!'- A short description and history both of Corsica and Sardinia also occur; the ship having been in sight of these islands, though she did not touch at either.
It may be proper to remark that no mention is made of the persons who accompanied the Earl; the narrative beginning,
I embarked from Leghorn,' &c: but this omission appears to have been the effect of inadvertence, as at times the plural is used, our curiosity,'_ We went,' &c. The reader is under obligations to the editor for information on this head.
At Messina the ship anchored. Here they had the mali. cious pleasure to see the Spaniards still fishing up the cannon and remains of those ships that were destroyed in this port by Admiral Byng. A short and well compressed history of the island of Sicily follows; with equally brief descriptions of the cities of Palermo, Messina, Augusta, Catanea, Syracusa, Gergento, and Trapani : but it does not appear whether these cities were all visited by the author. In every description, the