History of England, from the Accession of James the Second, the — Volume 5 eBook

This eBook from the Gutenberg Project consists of approximately 347 pages of information about History of England, from the Accession of James the Second, the — Volume 5.
opulence, were glad to hire themselves out to the planters of Jamaica, and laid their bones in that land of exile.  Shields died there, worn out and heart broken.  Borland was the only minister who came back.  In his curious and interesting narrative, he expresses his feelings, after the fashion of the school in which he had been bred, by grotesque allusions to the Old Testament, and by a profusion of Hebrew words.  On his first arrival, he tells us, he found New Edinburgh a Ziklag.  He had subsequently been compelled to dwell in the tents of Kedar.  Once, indeed, during his sojourn, he had fallen in with a Beer-lahai-roi, and had set up his Ebenezer; but in general Darien was to him a Magor Missabib, a Kibroth-hattaavah.  The sad story is introduced with the words in which a great man of old, delivered over to the malice of the Evil Power, was informed of the death of his children and of the ruin of his fortunes:  “I alone am escaped to tell thee.”


Trial of Spencer Cowper—­Duels—­Discontent of the Nation—­Captain Kidd—­Meeting of Parliament—­Attacks on Burnet—­Renewed Attack on Somers—­Question of the Irish Forfeitures:  Dispute between the Houses—­Somers again attacked—­Prorogation of Parliament—­Death of James the Second—­The Pretender recognised as King—­Return of the King—­General Election—­Death of William

The passions which had agitated the Parliament during the late session continued to ferment in the minds of men during the recess, and, having no longer a vent in the senate, broke forth in every part of the empire, destroyed the peace of towns, brought into peril the honour and the lives of innocent men, and impelled magistrates to leave the bench of justice and attack one another sword in hand.  Private calamities, private brawls, which had nothing to do with the disputes between court and country, were turned by the political animosities of that unhappy summer into grave political events.

One mournful tale, which called forth the strongest feelings of the contending factions, is still remembered as a curious part of the history of our jurisprudence, and especially of the history of our medical jurisprudence.  No Whig member of the lower House, with the single exception of Montague, filled a larger space in the public eye than William Cowper.  In the art of conciliating an audience, Cowper was preeminent.  His graceful and engaging eloquence cast a spell on juries; and the Commons, even in those stormy moments when no other defender of the administration could obtain a hearing, would always listen to him.  He represented Hertford, a borough in which his family had considerable influence; but there was a strong Tory minority among the electors, and he had not won his seat without a hard fight, which had left behind it many bitter recollections.  His younger brother Spencer, a man of parts and learning, was fast rising into practice as a barrister on the Home Circuit.

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History of England, from the Accession of James the Second, the — Volume 5 from Project Gutenberg. Public domain.
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