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lay's writings, we frankly admit; but it is a bias such as no man with a heart beating in his bosom is entirely free from. Macaulay had a heart, and, in consequence, he was a good hater and a fervent admirer. There is fervour in all his writings. What can be more ardent than that glowing account of the Puritans in the Essay on Milton ? The man whose heart does not burn within him as he reads Macaulay must be cold indeed. If any one doubts his passion, read the “ Lays of the Roundheads " in that periodical to which his earliest effusions were contributed. Who, for example, can read this account of Naseby Fight unmoved ?
“ And, hark ! like the roar of the billows on the shore,
The cry of battle rises along their charging line :
For Charles, King of England, and Rupert of the Rhine. " The furious German comes, with his clarion and his drums,
His battles of Alsatia and pages of Whitehall ; They are bursting on our flanks-grasp your pikes-close your
ranks, For Rupert never comes but to conquer or to fall. “ They are here-they rush on-we are broken-we are gone
Our left is borne before them like stubble on the blast. O Lord, put forth thy might! O Lord, defend the right!
Stand back to back, in God's name, and fight it to the last ! "Stout Skippon hath a wound—the centre hath given ground Hark! hark! what means that trampling of horsemen in our
rear ? Whose banner do I see, boys ? 'Tis he, thank God ! 'tis ho,
boys! Cheer up another minute, brave Oliver is here. “ Their heads all stooping low, their points all in a row,
Like a whirlwind on the seas, like a deluge on the dykes, Our cuirassiers have burst on the ranks of the accurst,
And at a shock have scattered the forest of the pikes. "Fast, fast the gallants ride, in some safe nook to hide
Their coward heads predestined to rot on Temple-bar; And he turns, he flies, shame to those cruel eyes
That bore to look on torture, but dared not look on war. "Ho! comrades, scour the plain, but ere ye strip the slain,
First give another stab to make your quest secure; Then shake from sleeves and pockets the broad pieces and
lockets, The tokens of the wanton, the plunder of the poor. VOL. III.
“Fools, your doublets shone with gold, and your hearts were gay
and bold, When ye kissed your lily hands to your lemans to-day; But to-morrow shall the fox, from her chambers in the rocks,
Send forth her tawny cubs to howl above the prey. “Where be their tongues that late mocked at heaven and hell and
fate; And the fingers that once were so busy with their blades? Their perfumed satin clothes, their catches, and their oaths, Their stage-plays and their sonnets, their diamonds and their
spades ? “ Down ! down! for ever down! with the mitre and the crown !
With the Belial of the Church, and the Mammon of the Pope ! There is woe in Oxford Halls! There is wail in Durham stalls,
The Jesuit smites his bosom, the bishop rends his cope. “ And she of the Seven Hills shall mourn her children's ills,
And tremble when she thinks of the edge of England's sword; And the kings of earth in fear shall tremble when they hear What the hand of God hath wrought for the Houses and the
In the Lays of the League, and of Ancient Rome, we have more of the same strong passion, and we do not think that we are moved by overweening partiality for our own opinions and for the antecedents that we admire most, when we say that for a man of Macaulay's tastes, education, and mental habits, to speak as he did of the Puritans, there was absolutely necessary a strong, impassioned nature, alive to the highest influences, awake to the finest music of humanity. The Ironsides and Psalm-singers had their rough, forbidding exterior. To a man of Macaulay's accomplishments and exquisite sense of the ludicrous, the contempt of learning and natural graces which the Puritans professed, their little peculiarities and angularities were sufficiently distasteful. And, in point of fact, he has ridiculed these unsparingly. He has jested about the whites of their eyes, about their nasal twang, about their queer names; and in one passage, which we pardon for the sense of humour displayed in it, our readers may remember that he describes the pleasure which the populace took in bearbaiting, then dwells for a moment on the opposition to such cruel sport which the Puritans gave, and finishes off with the rattling statement that, in point of fact, the Puritans, in their opposition to the fun, managed to secure the double pleasure of at once baiting the bear, and baiting the populace. It seems to us that when a man who could be so amused and repulsed by whatever was deficient or extravagant in the demeanour of the Puritans, nevertheless took their side with all his heart, and advocated their cause with a wisdom and eloquence which convinced the sober, and silenced the flippant, he must have had a sympathetic nature, he must have had a warm heart. Those who judge him differently, must have been deceived by the severity of the chastisement which he bestowed on vice and pretension. They cannot have observed that it is quite possible for the most genial natures to be good haters. Why should they not hate? Is it possible for them to love well without hating well? What can be more withering than the scorn with which Macaulay describes the merry monarch, who was crowned in his youth with the Covenant in his hand, and died at last with the Host sticking in his throat! Can anything be more crushing than his denunciation of that Court which, in the intensity of its selfishness, had reduced the ten commandments to two, bidding us to hate our neighbour, and to love our neighbour's wife? But who will accuse Macaulay seriously because he hated wrong, and scorned falsehood ? He was not a man who loved to show the finer feelings of his heart; and yet one fact may be related of his private life which clearly indicates the man. Able to leave to his heirs personal property to the extent of £80,000, he evidently enjoyed a considerable income. Those who knew him best declare that he gave away annually in kindnesses and charities more than a fourth, and nearly a third of his income. The general public knew nothing of his benefactions ; he was not the man to wear his heart upon his sleeve, and to expose what he regarded as sacred. He was a proud, but not a vain man, and sometimes did himself an injustice from his determination to let his character stand on its own merits, and to leave his acts undefended from the assaults of the enemy. One instance of this we have in the Windsor Castle business. He dated a letter written to some of his Edinburgh constituents, from Windsor Castle, on the occasion of the Whigs being first called upon to form a Government to replace that of Sir Robert Peel. Their attempt to form a Government was abortive, and great was the ridicule poured upon what seemed to be Macaulay's vanity in dating his letter from a region in which his party had not yet a secure foothold. This little display of apparent weakness did more to undermine his authority in Edinburgh than all his invective against the bray of Exeter Hall, and all his tenderness for the Roman Catholics. Mr. Thackeray defends Macaulay on the ground that Windsor Castle was not too great a palace for so great a man, and that he was entitled to date his letters from the proudest castle on the face of the earth. He is no doubt right, but there was another defence of Macaulay's conduct which was the simple truth, but which he himself was undoubtedly too proud to put forth in his own behalf. It is this that writing in Windsor Castle, he would naturally use the paper which he found there; that this paper is stamped at the top of the page in the same way as almost all note paper is now stamped with some device, or with the writer's address; that the stamp consists of the Royal arms and of the words, “Windsor Castle,” and that therefore the historian's letter necessarily, and without any contrivance of his, bore the obnoxious address, and laid him open to the taunts of petty assailants. He was not going to reply to their jibes. He never spoke of himself if he could help it. He is never personal. And this dislike of obtruding himself into his writings gave readers the idea that he was cold and statuesque. It was simply his art. It was the old masterly art of forgetting oneself in one's subject. It is a pity that he has not chosen to republish some of his earlier speeches, delivered before he entered Parliament, and then it would be seen how passionately he could feel, and with what oratorical rage he could speak. In expressing this regret, we are thinking especially of one red-hot speech on the West India planters, in which, with an ardour which might be even said to have lost itself in the fury of intemperance, he declared that their tender mercies were more cruel than the cruelties of Claverhouse, that their little fingers were thicker than the loins of Alva, that Robespierre chastised with whips, but that they chastised with scorpions. The man who could speak in this way was evidently following the promptings of a generous nature ; and what his heart prompted, reason justified and controlled.
In a letter which everybody must have read, Lord Brougham advised Macaulay to acquire at any cost the power of speaking readily. It is an advice which should perhaps have been propounded with the caution used by Mrs. Glasse in directing her readers how to dress a hare ;-first, catch it. How are you to speak easily and rapidly, if you have nothing to say. Macaulay, however, had no lack of ideas, and to him the advice was appropriate. If ever he found himself in want of an idea, his memory could supply him with a fact; and he poured forth with a vehemence which drew from Sydney Smith the wish that amid so much brilliant eloquence we had a few brilliant flashes of silence. He delighted in filling his page with facts, and he brought forward fact after fact which nobody knew, or which everybody had forgotten, with the constant formula that it was absurd to repeat such things to the reader, for any boy of the fourth form at Eton would deserve a flogging if he were ignorant of them. It was with the same delight in the affluence of his knowledge, that he was in the habit of stating a fact not explicitly, but allusively
-of putting it in a form which would imply a good deal, and would not all at once be obvious to every reader. We open his Essays at random, for example, and find a statement to the effect, that recently two men had died who, at a time of life at whichi many people have hardly completed their education, had raised themselves each in his own department to the height of glory. Who are these two ? “One of them died at Longwood; the other at Missolonghi.” If every Englishman could easily identify the latter with Byron, how many would be able, on the instant, to identify the former with Napoleon ? In the Essay on Clive, Macaulay says, in his usual style :-“Every schoolboy knows who imprisoned Montezuma, and who strangled Atahualpa.” This schoolboy is rather a mythical personage, but a critic might be permitted to say, that he is introduced for the sole purpose of covering and excusing the mention of a few sounding names, Macaulay having the Miltonic taste for words, and loving nothing so much as a sentence in which a number of mysterious syllables tickle the ear without conveying much sense to the mind. So he goes on to say :-“But we doubt whether one in ten, even among English gentlemen of highly cultivated minds, can tell who won the battle of Buxar, who perpetrated the massacre of Patna, whether Sujah Dowlah ruled in Oude or in Travancore, or whether Holkar was a Hindoo or a Mussulman.” The influence of such a sentence upon the unconscious reader is far beyond its merits; it rings in one's ears long after we have exhausted and dismissed from our minds the meaning which it conveys. Its effect is precisely that of the word “Mesopotamia,” uttered by Whitfield. “ Dinna ye mind that gran' word Mesopatamia ?” said the poor old woman, who remembered nothing else of the sermon; and it may be recollected that on one occasion O'Connell discomfited an old woman notorious for her resources in the art of vituperation, by calling her in return for her scurrilous epithets, a parallelogram, a hypothenuse, a trapezium, a tangent, a parabola, an ellipse. Macaulay's amazing mnemonic powers helped him greatly in this respect. He could quote to any extent. Hannah More, in letters published the other day, describes him, when a mere boy, reciting the whole of Heber's poem on Palestine at a moment's notice, while sitting over his breakfast. Numerous anecdotes might be told of similar readiness. We give but one, which relates to a gathering, at which Lady Morgan and Lord Carlisle were present, about the time when the houses fell in the Tottenham Court Road, making a great sensation in London. This accident became the subject of conversation in the party to which we refer, and immediately afterwards Lady Morgan, who was too free in her opinions, began to give ample expression to her