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Mr. Urban, May 10.
THE following critical opinion of the newly published Letters of the late Mrs. Carter to Mrs. Montagu, having been given in a private Letter to his friend the Editor, appeared so just to the Gentleman to whom it was shewn, that it is at his request, out of respectto the learned, highly endowed, and admirable Authoress, sent for preservation in your pages, to which candour, kindness, and praise, are more acceptable than severity: and where, when the flippant criticisms which feed the petty malignities of the day are forgotten, the calm decisions of the unprejudiced censor will be looked for and found. S.K.Ii
"To the Rev. M.P. at Deal. "My dear Friend, Feb. 16.
"I do not alter or abate in my opinion, that Mrs. Carter's Letters are models of epistolary excellence. la style there is all the strength of Johnson, without his pomp. In matter there is all his profundity and comprehension, without his prejudices. Her feelings are rather those of reflection than of impulse: and therefore rather excite esteem and admiration, than that love and kindness which the more melting pen of Miss Talbot draws forth as by a sort of intuitive charm; or than the flash of intellectual pleasure which is conveyed by the playful and ready wit of Mrs. Montagu.
In most moral questions I should be inclined to take Mrs. Carter as my guide. 1 have had many moral doubts, which had perplexed me, cleared up by her opinions: nor do 1 recollect any question she has touched upon, of those numerous nice difficulties in daily life of which the discussion is continually pressing itself on my mind, without having completely satisfied me by her reasoning.
With this impression on my mind, I told you most sincerely I thought it an imperious duty upon you to give the world the benefit of such precious and enlightening relics.
There is another characteristic excellence, which it strikes me that Mrs. Carter's Letters possess. They seem as it were to emanate from the judicial seat of wisdom: they are not ingenious pleadings, but calm and impartial decisions. Now it seems to me, that, in addition to the powers of reasoning, there is often a deep
natural sagacity wanted, to come to a wise moral decision: for it must in many cases be made up, in part, of ingredients which escape the grasp of language. This faculty, in addition to great reasoning powers, and great force and clearness of words, I think Mrs. Carter possessed.
Her industry assisted her with all the light of solid learning; and the calmness of her feelings (unlike (his warm and unhappy frame of mine, in whose temperament the most vivid impressions melt away aln out as rapidly as they are made) suffered her to retain in their original clearness the treasures with which Her memory was stored.
Mrs. Montagu too often took up her pen to think what she should say: Mrs. Carter always to say no more than she thought. Mrs. Montagu's fancy was certainly more brilliant j her imagery more copious; and her combinations more quick, unexpected, and surprising, —r Mrs. Carter's more deep, more picturesque, and more just.
It is easy to conceive letters more calculated for temporary attraction than those of Mrs. Carter, which open no political discoveries: deal in no piquant satire; betray no private scandal; and gratify no private malice: which upen no cabinets; and let not prurient curiosity behind the scenes of public, or private life.
That alone, which deals in such stimulants for the foi:l and palled appetite of the publick, is likely to be the great and noisy favourite of the' day. But there is a slow and gradual fame, which is of a thousand times more value; the fame constituted of the voices of the good and wise, gently rising from wide and dispersed quarters, till the* meet in one harmonious acclamation, high above the stir and clamour of grovelers and earthly-minded multitudes, inebriated with mean passions and the conceit of vulgar knowledge!"
Mr. Urban, Curzon-street,
BEING engaged in preparing for the press a new edition of Dr. Arbuthnot's Works, freed from the rubbish amidst which they have hitherto appeared; I beg leave to inquire whether any of your numerous Headers can furnish me with the History of the Doctor's family after his
decease, decease, or point out the channel through which access might be obtained to a collection of letters addressed to him by different eminent persons of his time, which, accordiug to Dr. Kippis, was in the possession of the M iss A rbuthnots.'
Yours, &c. Al. Henderson.
TO those of your Readers especially who are in possession (and even to many who are not) of the " Memoirs of the late Wrn. Stevens, esq. Treasurer of Queen Anne's Bounty," dedicated to the Right Rev. Bishop Skinner, Aberdeen, by the Hon. Mr. Justice Park, it will be satisfactory to know, that, in consequence of the decease in the last year of that worthy Prelate, his friends have recently subscribed a few hundred pounds for the purpose of erecting a Statue to his memory in St. Andrew's Chapel in that city, over which congregation he presided so many years, as well as being Primate of the Scotch Episcopal Church, with so much credit to himself and advantage to that community.' Mr. Flaxman, Royal Academician, and Professor of Sculpture, has undertaken the Work. Amicus.
Narrative of a Remarkable Escape from the Rebel Armi/ in 1745.
THE recent publication of the Culloden Papers having recalled the attention of the publick to the subject of the Rebellion in 1745-6, after its being become nearly obsolete otherwise than as a portion of General History; and it having fallen to iny lot to be one of the very few now remaining who retain a pretty clear recollection, not only of the principal transactions, but also of many of the minor circumstances connected with that interesting event; I have been induced to look over some papers in in v possession relating to it that had long lain unattended to. Among these a letter, giving an account of a remarkable escape from the Rebel army while at Derby, appeared to me to merit preservation; and I know of no repository so proper fjpr that purpose as the Gentleman's Magazine, should the much-respected Editor be of the same opinion. 1 believe it may be safely said that the Narrative has never yet appeared in print, further than a few particulars of the
occurrence being inserted, rather incorrectly, iu a small volume printed in a cheap form at Carlisle iu 1755, entitled, "A Compleat History of the Rebellion, from its first Rise in
1745, to its total suppression in April
1746. By James Ray, of Whitehaven, Volunteer under his Royal Highness the Duke of Cumberland;" a publication which, notwithstanding its homely garb and style, is not inferior, as a record of facts, to some of much higher pretensions.
The Writer of the Letter, which was probably addressed to his then late partner (who was very nearly related to me), but the directed cover has not been preserved, was well known as a very respectable wholesale linen draper in London. He retired from business rather early in life, by reason of delicate health; and, after waiting several years, his reward for the hazards his loyalty had exposed him to, was a Receivership of the Land Tax—• I believe in Northumberland. The Letter not being written sooner after the transaction, was owing-to the time it took him to recruit sufficiently to be able to form a connected Narrative, as well as to receive the attestations referred to in the concluding; part of it. A Friend To Accuracy. Sir, Manchester, Dec. 23,1745.
On Monday the 2nd day of December, 1745, about 6 o'clock in the evening, I left London and came post for Manchester, having received a letter that day from my father that the Rebels were there the Friday before. I came to Derby the next day, about 7 o'clock in the evening, where the Duke of Devonshire then was, to whom I immediately sent an account by Mr. William Johnson, a Captain in his newraised regiment, that three troops of the Duke of Kingston's light horse were that day come into Loughborough, and three more into Leicester.
About midnight the Duke of Devonshire, with the new-raised forces then at Derby, marched for Nottingham, having received intelligence of the Rebels being at Ashbourne; and the Marquis of Darlington's gentleman was ordered to wait in the road betwixt Ashbourne and Derby till he actually saw the Rebels.
About 10 o'clock on Wednesday he returned to Derby with an account that the Rebels were within a few miles of the town. He did not stay
to to light, but set out for Nottingham in company with Mr. Howe, the postmaster of Derby. I promised these gentlemen that I would stay in town, and take as particular an account of the Rebels as 1 was able, and would, if desired, send such account to the Duke of Devonshire at Nottingham: with which the Marquis's Gentleman seemed pleased, thanked me, and said it would be of service. Mr. Howe told me 1 might deliver such account to the servant he had left at his house, who would take proper care to forward it. Upon which 1 took leave of these gentlemen, and went to Mrs. Howe, and acquainted her with my design of staying in town, and desired she would givemeahandfullof pease, by the help of which I thought I should execute my design with more certainly and less confusion than any other method I could think of; after which 1 took a walk to the end of the street which leads to Ashbourne, where I met with one Mr. Orrell, an old school-fellow, who lives at Findeni, three miles from Derby. After a short conversation, he gave me to understand that his business there was to get the best intelligence he could of the Rebels, and offered to introduce me to a friend's house who lived just at the entrance of the town from Ashbourne, which I accepted; and so soon as we came into the house we were conducted up stairs into a chamber towards the street, where we staid from about one o'clock till fire in the afternoon, in which time the first division of the Rebels, with their pretended Prince, came in; after which 1 went to Mr. Howe's, wrote, and delivered a letter for the Duke of Devonshire, with the account I had taken, to Mr. Howe's servant, as before agreed upon; and immediately returned to my friend, who carried me the same evening upon his horse to Finderp; where, with great difficulty, he procured me a guide and two horses for Uttoxeter.
I left Findern about eight o'clock the same evening, and got to Uttoxeter soon after ten, where 1 was in hopes of finding the Duke of Cumberland, but was informed there that he was at Stafford; whereupon I immediately applied to the postmaster, who procured me horses and a guide for Stafford, where I arrived before
two o'clock in the morning; rode immediately to the Duke of Cumberland's lodgings, and enquired for hit) secretary, to whom I was soon introduced. 1 in formed him that the first division of the Rebels, consisting «f 2300 foot, 450 horse, 75 baggage, and about 40 led horses, with their pretended Prince, got into Derby on Wednesday afternoon; and that the rear division, with their artillery and Baggage, got into Ashbourne from Leek about three o'clock the same day; and, after halting there about half an hour, marched forward for Derby that night. This account the' secretary immediately communicated to his Royal Highness, who was then in bed, and who by him returned me thanks for my intelligence; and said, that, if he had not been much fatigued the night before, he would have returned me thanks in person; and an express, in consequence of my intelligence, as I apprehend, was immediately dispatched to the commanding officer at Lichfield, and from thence to Nottingham. I was present when the orders were given to this messenger, and heard the secretary tell him, that he believed the Rebels would be at Nottingham before he would reach there. After 1 had staid for near the space of an hour with the secretary, and given him the best information I was able, I went to an inn in town, where, after having dismissed my guide and post horses, I accommodated myself as well as I could; but, as the town was quite full of the King's troops, 1 got little or no rest or refreshment. I made it my business so soon as it was light to enquire for a horse, and as soon as I could hire one set out for Uttoxeter, where I arrived on Thursday the' 5th instant, about three o'clock in the afternoon; and being desirous of returning to Derby that night, in order to get some further intelligence, which 1 had promised, if material, to communicate to his Royal Highness's secretary, I applied to the postmaster at Uttoxeter for horses, who procured them for me, with the same guide 1 had the night before to Stafford: and having heard the secretary tell the messenger, whom, as I said before, he dispatched in my presence to Litchfield and Nottingham, that he thought the Rebels would be at Nottingham before he could arrive; and from the consideration of
their forced march from Leek to Derby in one dav, 1 had no suspicion of their halting there, and concluded the town would be rid of them before ray arrival. Therefore I set out with my old guide from Ultoxeter to Derby, about half an hour past four o'clock in the afternoon: it was past seven the same evening before I came to Derby. On my entrance into the town all seemed still, which confirmed me in my former belief, that the Rebels had left it. But I had not gone far before I was stopped and examined by their picquet guard, and, after a short examination, was, by a number of them, conveyed to the officer of the guard, who, after asking me a few questions, said I must go to his captain, who was likewise short in bis examination of me, and said, that as 1 was a gentleman, the Prince (as he called him) Would like to see me himself; so I and my guide were conducted to his lodgings at Lord Exeter's house, when, after about an hour's confinement in the guardhouse, I was called into a large parlour, where there were near 30 of their chiefs and superior officers, before whom I was examined by one Keys, who was railed their deputy secretary. I persisted in the story I had told the officers by whom I had before been examined; and had not my guide, who was confined and examined in another room, discovered the chief thing I wanted to have concealed (I mean my being at Stafford, and at his Royal Highness's lodging) 1 might probably Jiaye been discharged. And indeed, if he had not been a very'weak and cowardly fellow, the hints I had given him would have been a sufficient direction to him, and our examinations had been consistent, which I conclude they were not; for, after 1 had been examined in the parlour, I was ordered up into Keys's lodgiug-room, where 1 passed under a further and more strict examination. I was then immediately threatened with a halter, and used in such a manner as gave me a lively specimen of what might be expected from such wretches if in power; and awakened in me dismal apprehensions of the danger I was in. After they had tired themselves, 1 was ordered into their colonel's guardroom, which was a chamber in Lord Excter'shouselookinginlo tliegardei),
where I was kept, and continued under a strong guard until about seven o'clock the next morning, at which time there appeared an extraordinary hurry and bustle amongst my guard, who talked much of their Prince being got up; and one quitted the room after another, till at last 1 was left alone, and then I began to think of making ray escape. The first thing I did in order to it was to try whether I could open the sashes— one I found was nailed, the other I opened the shutter of, and raised the lower sash a little, but was interrupted by a person coming into the room, who, proving none of my guard, seemed to take little notice of roe, and went out again; upon which I bolted the door on the inside, and made shift to get off my boots, and immediately alter flung myself out of the window, under which was a gravel walk in Lord Exeter's garden: the height of the window from the walk was (as has been since computed) above seven yards. I was pretty much stunned with the fall, but soon recovered myself, and ran down the garden, which at the bottom is bounded by the River Darwent, and inclosed by high brick wails on each side, at the end of which, to the water, long iron spikes were driven, to prevent, as I apprehend, the communication betwixt that and the adjoining gardens. Notwithstanding which I got into the next garden without receiving any hurt, and afterwards ran across two more gardens, aud passed, 1 know not how, all the fences till 1 came to Mr. Heathcole's, which I found to be a light brick wall. Upon laying hold of it at the lower end, part of the wall fell, and forced me into the river, which in that part is several yards deep: it was with great difficulty 1 got out of the water intoMr. Healhcote'sgarden, where 1 concealed myself for a short time in a garden-house. When I made ray escape out of the guard-room I had no hat with me, and ray peruke being lost, aud my clothes wet, I found myself very cold ; which if I could have borne, 1 thought my situation far from safe, and therefore determined upon stripping oft' all my clothes, leaving them in the gardenhouse, and swimming down the river, which I accordingly did for the space of about 50 yards, till 1 came to the
wear, and from thence waded down the river for about 70 yards before I could land on the other aide; which when I had done, 1 ran down, keeping close to the river si !e for near three miles, and then discovered Alvaston, a village not far distant from, but on the other side the river; and being extremely cold and almost spent nut, I resolved to make the best of my way thither, which obliged me to swim again across the river. It was with great difficulty I got to the town, where I weut to the back door of the first house I came to, which proved to be one Mr. Kigley's, where I was received and behaved to with great humanity. They got me into a warm bed, where I had not lain long before I recollected that there were some women in the house who saw me when I came in; and not hearing them talk, 1 inquired what was become of them, and was told they were gone to Derby. Upon which 1 immediately got up, thinking I could not be long safe there, and requested Mr. Kigley's son-in-law, one Mr. Stensou, to accommodate me with some clothes, and direct me to some other house where I might be more concealed. Mr. Slenson lent me some clothes, after which I wanted a horse, which he could not then supply me with; and as I was utterly incapable of walking far on foot, he advised me to go to one Mr. Osborne's, who lived in the same town, and not far distant from him, which I accordingly did, and was received with a deal of civility; but before I had been there two hours, the news was brought me that some men from Derby were come in pursuit of me; upon which I made my escape out of a back door, and with all my might ran towards the river; but apprehending myself closely pursued, and being incapable of undergoing much more fatigue, I got behind a hedge, and lay upon the ground, till the cold had made sueh an impression upon me, as Convinced me that if I continued there much longer I should be incapable of stirring, and accessary to my own death. 1 then attempted to go, or rather crawl upon my hands and knees, to Mr. Osborne's house, and got in again unobserved at the back door; but no sooner was I set down, than the men Who were sent by Mr. Heathcote to
search for and bring me to Derby came to Mr. Osborne's house; upon which I made my escape, leaping out of a parlour window; Soon after ray pursuers came into the house; and with the greatest difficulty and danger I got to Elvaston, another village at about half a mile's distance from Alvaston, where one Mr. Franceway of Nottingham had left me his horse. I then borrowed some more clothes of a poor man, mounted Mr. France-, way's horse, and in dismal plight made the best of my way to Nottingham, where I arrived about four o'clock in the afternoon.
What I have hitherto said are facta of my own knowledge; but what chiefly relates to Mr. Heathcote, and the part which he and his emissaries have acted, 1 could only have from the testimony of others; and therefore desired a friend to take the examinations of those who heard and observed the same, which be accordingly has done; and yesterday I received from him six examinations in writing, signed by the several parties; by which it appears, that Mr. Heathcole's servant was one of the four persons who pursued me to Alvastou, and the others were three prisoner* whom he had engaged and sent to assist in taking me; to whom (as they owned) he had given strict orders, which they in part pursued, by going first to the house of Mr. Kigley, insulting his wife, and declaring that the house,' with the family, should or would be burnt or destroyed if I was not immediately delivered up to them; and particularly Mr. Heathcote's servant said he must have me, and durst not go without me. When they had entered in, and searched every corner of the house without finding me, they withdrew to an alehouse in the town, where they got intelligence of my removal from Mr. Kigley's to Mr. Osborne's; upon which they went immediately thither, searched Mr. Osborne's house, used several oaths and imprecations, and added such like threat as they had made use of at Mr. Kigley's, if 1 wasuot immediately delivered up to them. One gentleman in bis examination says, that Mr. Heathcote told him that he (Mr. Heathcote) had sent word to the Kebeli by one Mr. Francis of Derby, who from thence went after them to Ashbourne, that the person who had