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"It delights me to receive such accounts from Maclise's fresco. If he will only give his magnificent genius fair play, there is not enough cant and dullness even in the criticism of art from which Sterne prayed kind Heaven to defend him, as the worst of all the cants continually canted in this canting world, to keep the giant down an hour.
Our poor friend, the naval governor, has lost his wife, I am sorry to hear, since you and I spoke of his pleasant face. And IB, what a terrible history that was! F did himself enduring honor by his manly and zealous devotion to the interests of that orphan family, in the midst of all his pains and trouble. It was very good of him.
"Do not let your nieces forget me, if you can help it; and give my love to Count D'Orsay, with many thanks to him for his charming letter. I was greatly amused by his account of. There was a 'cold shade of aristocracy' about it, and a dampness of cold water, which entertained me beyond CHARLES DICKENS."
"Devonshire Terrace, March 2d, 1846.
"Many thanks for the letters! I will take the greatest care of them, though I blush to find how little they deserve it.
"It vexes me very much that I am going out on Friday, and can not help it. I have no strength of mind, I am afraid. I am always making engagements in which there is no prospect of satisfaction.
"Vague thoughts of a new book are rife within me just now, and I go wandering about at night into the strangest places, according to my usual propensity at such a time, seeking rest and finding none. As an addition to my composure, I ran over a little dog in the Regent's Park yesterday (killing him on the spot), and gave his little mistress, a girl of thirteen or fourteen, such exquisite distress as I never saw the like of.
"I must have some talk with you about those American singers. They must never go back to their own country without your having heard them sing Hood's Bridge of Sighs.' My God, how sorrowful and pitiful it is! "Best regards to Count D'Orsay and the young ladies.
"Devonshire Terrace, May 19th, 1846.
"If I had not a good reason for delaying to acknowledge the receipt of the book you so kindly sent me, I should be a most unworthy dog. But I have been every day expecting to be able to send you the inclosed little volume, and could get no copies until last night, in consequence of their running very fine against the subscription and demand. May you like it!
“I have been greatly entertained by the femme de chambre, who paints love with a woman's eye (I think that the highest praise), and sometimes like a female Gil Blas. The spirit of our two fair friends M and S shines through their representative. I would have identified the former any where.
"Count D'Orsay's copy of the pictures, with my cordial remembrance and regards. Ever, my dear Lady Blessington, faithfully your friend,
"48 Rue de Courcelles, Paris, January 24th, 1847. "I feel very wicked in beginning this note, and deeply remorseful for not having begun and ended it long ago. But you know how difficult it is to write letters in the midst of a writing life; and as you know too (I hope) how earnestly and affectionately I always think of you, wherever I am, I take heart on a little consideration, and feel comparatively good again.
"F has been cramming into the space of a fortnight every description of impossible and inconsistent occupation in the way of sight-seeing. He has been now at Versailles, now in the prisons, now at the Opera, now at the hospitals, now at the Conservatoire, and now at the Morgue, with a dreadful insatiability. I begin to doubt whether I had any thing to do with a book called 'Dombey,' or ever sat over number five (not finished a fortnight yet) day after day, until I half began, like the monk in poor Wilkie's story, to think it the only reality in life, and to mistake all the realities for short-lived shadows.
Among the multitude of sights, we saw our pleasant little bud of a friend, Rose Cheri, play Clarissa Harlowe the other night. I believe she did it in London just now, and perhaps you may have seen it. A most charming, intelligent, modest, affecting piece of acting it is, with a death superior to any thing I ever saw on the stage, except Macready's Lear.' The theatres are admirable just now. We saw Gentil Bernard' at the Varietés last night, acted in a manner that was absolutely perfect. It was a little picture of Watteau, animated and talking from beginning to end. At the Cirque there is a new show-piece, called the French Revolution,' in which there is a representation of the National Convention, and a series of battles (fought by some five hundred people, who look like five thousand), that are wonderful in their extraordinary vigor and truth. Gun-cotton gives its name to the general annual jocose review at the Palais Royal, which is dull enough, saving for the introduction of Alexandre Dumas sitting in his study beside a pile of quarto volumes about five feet high, which he says is the first tableau of the first act of the first piece to be played on the first night of his new theatre. The revival of Molière's 'Don Juan' at the Français has drawn money. It is excellently played, and it is curious to observe how different their Don Juan and Valet are from our English ideas of the master and man. They are playing 'Lucretia Borgia' again at the Porte St. Martin; but it is poorly performed, and hangs fire drearily, though a very remarkable and striking play. We were at VH-'s house last Sunday week, a most extraordinary place, looking like an old curiosity shop, or the property-room of some gloomy, vast old theatre. I was much struck by H— himself, who looks like a genius, as he is, every inch of him, and is very interesting and satisfactory from head to foot. His wife is a handsome woman, with flashing black eyes. There is
also a charming ditto daughter of fifteen or sixteen, with ditto eyes. Sitting among old armor, and old tapestry, and old coffers, and grim old chairs and tables, and old canopies of state from old palaces, and old golden lions going to play at skittles with ponderous old golden balls, they made a most romantic show, and looked like a chapter out one of his own bo
THE Right Honorable Sir James Scarlett, Baron Abinger, a Privy Councilor, Lord Chief Baron of the Exchequer, &c., &c., &c., was born in Jamaica, where his family had been long resident, and held considerable property. A younger brother of his, Sir Robert Scarlett, was for many years chief justice of the island.
Sir James was sent to England at an early age for education. He graduated in Cambridge in 1790, and in 1794 was called to the bar. He rose rapidly in his profession as an advocate, and obtained a silk gown in 1816. He offered himself for the borough of Lewes in 1812, but lost the election, and again in 1816 contested the borough, and was defeated. In 1818 he entered Parliament for Lord Fitzwilliam's borough of Peterborough. His success in Parliament, however, was far from answering the expectations of his friends. In 1822 he stood for the borough of Cambridge, and was defeated, but was immediately after rechosen for Peterborough.
In 1822, in Mr. Canning's administration, he was made attorney general, and was knighted the same year. From this period Sir James manifested very strongly and conspicuously Conservative principles. In 1828 he ceased to be attorney general, and was succeeded by Sir Charles Wetherell. In May, 1829, Sir Charles made a violent speech in opposition to Catholic Emancipation, and was dismissed by the Duke of Wellington. Sir James Scarlett was appointed by the duke to succeed Sir Charles Wetherell, who again offered himself to the borough of Peterborough, and was re-elected.
The new attorney general was soon called on to file criminal informations against "The Morning Journal," "The Atlas," and other papers, for libels on the Duke of Wellington and Lord Chancellor Lyndhurst. In 1830, on the Whigs coming into office, Sir James Scarlett's office of attorney general was conferred on Mr. Denman. In 1831 Sir James offered himself to the electors of Cockermouth, and was returned by them.
The following year he stood for Norwich, on the Tory interest, and was returned also.
A tender appeal of Sir James Scarlett to the ladies of Norwich, in the contest of 1832, in behalf of himself and a brother candidate, is one of the most amusing specimens of grave rigmarole electioneering eloquence on record:
"To the Ladies of Norwich.- None but the brave deserve the fair.' If ever the sweets of social virtue, the wrath of honest zeal, the earnings of industry, and the prosperity of trade, had any influence in the female breast, you have now a happy opportunity of exercising it to the advantage of your countryyour cause. If ever the feelings of a parent, wife, sister, friend, or lover had a sympathy with the public virtue, now is your time to indulge the fonder passion. If ever you felt for the ruin and disgrace of England, and for the miseries and deprivations occasioned by the obnoxious Reform Bill, you are called upon by the most tender and affectionate tie in nature to exert your persuasive influence on the mind of a father, brother, husband, or lover: tell them not to seek filial duty, congenial regard, matrimonial comfort, nor tender compliance, till they have saved your country from perdition!-posterity from slavery! History furnishes us with instances of female patriotism equal to any in the page of war and politics. Oh, may the generous and beatific charms of female persuasion prevail with the citizens of Norwich to espouse the cause of real liberty-of
"STORMONT AND SCARLETT.”*
The ex-attorney general's fervor on this occasion, and enthu* New Monthly Magazine, August, 1832.
siastic warmth of expression, is gravely commented on in the periodical in which this epistolary gem has been preserved:
"If ever the sweets of social virtue,' say these gallant champions of the close borough system, 'the wrath of honest zeal, the earnings of industry, and the prosperity of trade, had any influence in the female breast, you have now a happy opportunity of exercising it to the advantage of your country-your cause.' The idea of exercising female breasts to the advantage of the country is, at all events, original, and the hint in the following paragraph, that 'now is the time to indulge the fonder passion,' is of exceedingly questionable morality."
In December, 1834, when Peel came into power, Sir James was made chief baron, with a peerage, by the title of Baron Abinger, and his son succeeded to the seat for Norwich.
In the House of Peers Lord Abinger spoke but seldom, and then chiefly on legal questions. He was irregular in his attendance in the House, and evinced there by his votes his repugnance to Liberalism, and his strong sympathy with Conservative views on old political principles. As an advocate, it is universally admitted Sir James Scarlett was unrivaled. He had those qualifications for legal eminence which have such an extraordinary effect in attracting attention to the merits of "young men behind the bar." He had an intelligent air and a prepossessing appearance. He had one of those compact, business-looking faces that look well with a wig. Sir James, moreover, had an appearance of confidence in himself which begets a feeling of confidence in others. He had a twinkling expression of sagacity in his look, and a humorous aspect, which told amazingly with juries. He had, above all, a discriminative knowledge of human character, and a keen perception of character, which enabled him to deal with juries and jurors individually and collectively, that gave him singular advantage over other advocates in addressing himself to the feelings, interests, biases, and prepossessions of people in a jury box. The consummate art of his advocacy was exhibited in sinking the professional character of the advocate, elevating the merits of his case, adapting his suggestions and inferences to the prevailing opinions or prej