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was induced by Dr. Calcott to employ his leisure time in sup plying the words for a patriotic song--the musician being wisely of opinion that a Cabinet Minister's name on the back of a song would make it sell, whatever the merit of the poetry might be. Upon this Ministerial performance, Pitt was called on to pass a critical judgment. He seems to have taken a purely political view of the subject ; and accordingly, bearing in mind the precedent of despatches and votes of thanks, he pronounced that the second in command ought to be noticed as well as the chief. He is even said to have supplied the defect by the addition of a stanza of his own—which, if his reputation depended on his poetry, would certainly have justified the hypothesis that his intellect was giving way. The verses are execrably taine, and not altogether intelligible. The fact, however, only rests upon the bare assertion of one of Lord Mulgrave's sons, unsupported by any proof; and Lord Stanhope thinks it better, for the credit of his hero, to discredit the genuineness of this poetic effort altogether.
But this promise of recovery was speedily cut short. Just at the crisis of the malady, a report reached England that the Coalition had gained an overwhelming victory at some place in Moravia. For a time the rumour was generally believed. Even the Ministers did not suspect it, and reported it to the King as an undoubted fact. Close after it followed the melancholy truth— that the overwhelming victory was upon Napoleon's side, and that the costly Coalition, from which so much had been expected, was at an end. The shock was too much for Mr. Pitt's critical condition. As soon as he had read the despatches, he asked for a map, and desired to be left alone. He was left for a long time to his reflections upon the disheartening news: and he rose up from them a doomed man. The malady under which he was suffering, and which is particularly susceptible to violent emotion, received an impetus which could never afterwards be checked. It left his extremities, and turned inwards upon some vital organ; and from that moment a growing debility set in, from which he never rallied. As Canning said some days later, 'It was the relapse of a single day that reduced Mr. Pitt to the wreck he now is.'
After this the end came rapidly. At first he did not see it himself, and talked as if he only doubted whether he should recover in time for the beginning of the Session. But he began to be aware of what was impending sooner than his friends, and apparently sooner than his physicians. The day before he left Bath-a fortnight before his death-he said to Lord Melville, 'I wish the King may not repent, and sooner than he thinks, the rejection of the advice I pressed on him at Weymouth.' But
by the time he had arrived at Putney it was too evident to all. The symptom which was most alarming to unprofessional observers was the total loss of those splendid tones which in public and in private had always fascinated his hearers. His voice had become weak and tremulous. His emaciation was so great that his countenance was utterly changed. For a day or two he still was supposed to be well enough to write letters, and to see some of his political friends. His last conversation upon public affairs was with Lord Wellesley, who had just returned from India : and one of the last subjects of that conversation was his commendation of Sir Arthur Wellesley. I never met,' he said, “any military officer with whom it was so satisfactory to converse. He states every difficulty before he undertakes any service, but none after he has undertaken it.' There was something almost prophetic in this his dying description of the combined caution and courage which ultimately carried on to victory the task that he was leaving incomplete. But this interview and these topics were more than his strength could bear. He fainted away before Lord Wellesley had left the room. Lord Wellesley saw that the hand of death was upon him, and warned Lord Grenville of what was coming. He received the fatal intelligence in an agony of tears, and immediately determined that all hostility in Parliament should be suspended.' Such is Lord Wellesley's account of the effect of the intelligence upon Pitt's former colleague. His ancient rival Fox received it, if his own account may be trusted, with more philosophy. He was not much for delicacies at any time,' he told the Speaker ; but there were some he found who felt a difficulty while the reports were so very strong of Mr. Pitt's extreme state.'* but seven months more, and he was lying in the same state himself,
The closing scene is best described in the words of Lord Stanhope's uncle, who stood by the side of the death-bed :
““ After this was concluded, Mr. Pitt begged to be left alone, and he remained composed and apparently asleep for two or three hours. Doctors Baillie and Reynolds arrived about three, and gave as their opinion that Mr. Pitt could not live above twenty-four hours. Our own feelings in losing our only protector, who had reared us with more than parental care, I need not attempt to describe.
““ From Wednesday morning I did not leave his room except for a few minutes till the time of his death, though I did not allow him to see me, as I felt myself unequal to the dreadful scene of parting with him, and feared (although he was given over) that the exertion on his part might hasten the dreadful event which now appeared inevitable.
* Co!ch. Diaries, vol. ii. p. 28.
Hester applied for leave to see him, but was refused. Taking, however, the opportunity of Sir Walter's being at dinner, she went into Mr. Pitt's room. Though even then wandering a little, he imme diately recollected her, and with his usual angelic mildness wished her future happiness, and gave her a most solemn blessing and affeo tionate farewell. On her leaving the room I entered it, and for some time afterwards Mr. Pitt continued to speak of her, and several times repeated, ' Dear soul, I know she loves me! Where is Hester? Is Hester gone?' In the evening Sir Walter gave him some champagne, in hopes of keeping up for a time his wasting and almost subdued strength; and as Mr. Pitt seemed to feel pain in swallowing it, owing to the thrush in his throat, Sir Walter said: 'I am sorry, Sir, to give you pain. Do not take it unkind.' MK Pitt, with that mildness which adorned his private life, replied: 'I never take anything unkind that is meant for my good.' At three o'clock on Wednesday Colonel Taylor arrived express from His Majesty at Windsor, and returned with the melancholy [news] of all hopes having ceased. I remained the whole of Wednesday night with Mr. Pitt. His mind seemed fixed on the affairs of the country, and he expressed his thoughts aloud, though sometimes incoherently. He spoke a good deal concerning a private letter from Lord Harrowby, and frequently inquired the direction of the wind; then said, answering himself, ' East; ah! that will do; that will bring him quick:' at other times seemed to be in conversation with a messenger, and sometimes cried out · Hear, hear!' as if in the House of Commons. During the time he did not speak he moaned considerably, crying, 'O dear! O Lord !' Towards twelve the rattles came in his throat, and proclaimed approaching dissolution. Sir Walter, the Bishop, Charles, and my sister were lying down on their beds, overcome with fatigue. At one (Jan. 23] a Mr. South arrived from town in a chaise, bringing a vial of hartshorn oil, a spoonful of which he insisted on Mr. Pitt's taking, as he had known it recover people in the last agonies. Remonstrance as to its certain inefficacy was useless, and on Sir W. saying that it could be of no detriment, we poured a couple of spoonfuls down Mr. Pitt's throat. It produced no effect but a little convulsive cough. In about half an hour Mr. South returned to town; at about half-past two Mr. Pitt ceased moaning, and did not speak or make the slightest sound for some time, as his extremities were then growing chilly. I feared he was dying; but shortly afterwards, with a much clearer voice than he spoke in before, and in a tone I never shall forget, he exclaimed, Oh, my country! how I leave my country!' From that time he never spoke or moved, and at half-past four expired without a groan or struggle. His strength being quite exhausted, his life departed like a candle burning out.'
Pitt's last exclamation, 'Oh, my country! how I leave my country!' is printed in the work before us how I love my country!' But we understand that, since the publication of his work, Lord Stanhope has discovered an earlier copy from the
blotted and blurred MS., in which leave,' and not • love,' is the reading. As far as internal evidence goes, there cannot be a doubt. The one is slightly melodramatic, and by no means natural in a man who carried the repression of feeling to an excess: the other sums up with eloquent conciseness the circumstances which cast a gloom, deeper than the gloom of death, over the dying statesman's thoughts.
Though it has hitherto rested on no very distinct authority, it has always been the popular belief, that Pitt died with the exclamation Oh, my country!' upon his lips. It is strange that Lord Macaulay should have treated the tradition with ridicule, and dismissed it as 'a fable. There can be no doubt of its substantial authenticity now; but it was so true to the nature and the past career of the great Minister, that the wonder is that it should have ever been disbelieved. It was mournfully in character with a life devoted to his country as few lives have been. Since his first entry into the world he had been absolutely hers. For her he had foregone the enjoyments of youth, the ties of family, the hope of fortune. For three-and-twenty years his mind had moulded her institutions, and had shaped her destiny. It was an agonizing thought for his dying pillow, that he had ruled her almost absolutely, and that she had trusted him without hesitation and without stint, and that this was the end of it all. At his bidding the most appalling sacrifices had been made in vain; and now he was leaving her in the darkest hour of a terrible reverse, and in the presence of the most fearful foe whom she had ever been called upon to confront. Such thoughts might well wring from him a cry of mental anguish, even in the convulsions of death. It was not given to him to know how much he had contributed to the final triumph. Long after his feeble frame had been laid near his father's grave, his policy continued to animate the councils of English statesmen, and the memory of his lofty and inflexible spirit encouraged them to endure. After eleven more years of suffering, Europe was rescued from her oppressor by the measures which Pitt had advised, and the long peace was based upon the foundations which he had laid. But no such consoling vision cheered his death-bed. His fading powers could trace no ray of light across the dark and troubled future. The leaders had not yet arisen, who, through unexampled constancy and courage, were to attain at last to the glorious deliverance towards which he had pointed the way, but which his eyes were never permitted even in distant prospect to behold.
Art. VIII.-1. Shot-proof Gun-Shields as adapted to Iron-Cased
Ships for National Defence. By Captain Cowper Phipps
Coles, R.N. London, 1861. 2. Second Report of the Royal Commissioners on the National
Defences. London. 3. What is good Iron, and how is it to be got? By R. H. Cheney.
London, 1862. \HE civil war now raging in America seems destined to fur
nish Europe with a series of surprises which defy the calculations of our most sagacious politicians, and at first sight appear to set at nought all the experience hitherto gained in the wars on this side of the Atlantic.
The war itself, not only in its origin but in its duration, has been of a nature that no one anticipated ; and even at this moment the most experienced statesmen are as unable to predict when or how it may end as they were to foresee its commencement. The siege, if it may be so called, of Fort Sumter, which was the first event of the war, is unlike anything that is known to have occurred in Europe. We have no record of a powerful casemated fort in the sea being forced to surrender to the attacks of batteries situated on the shore before a breach was made or a single gun dismounted; and, what is more wonderful still, before a single man was killed or even wounded on the side either of the attack or the defence. The battle of Bull's Run, which was the next great event, is equally without a parallel in the annals of European warfare; and so, too, is the duel recently fought between the two iron-plated vessels at the mouth of the James River. This duel was, so far as we know, almost as bloodless as the siege of Fort Sumter, and, if not so momentous in its political consequences, it is yet well worthy of the most attentive consideration of all persons interested in military matters. We could afford to smile at the siege of Fort Sumter, and did not think that any knowledge was gained through that event, as to the advantage of defensive works. The battle of Bull's Run was looked upon as so exceptional that no one attempted to draw any military conclusion from its phenomena. But the action between the Merrimac' and the Monitor' has aroused the attention of Englishmen almost as much as the affair of the Trent;' and the fight has been discussed, both in Parliament and out of doors, with a degree of interest and an amount of excitement scarcely surpassed by the announcement of the seizure of the Confederate envoys from under the protection of the British flag.
The difference, however, in the manner in which the two controversies have been conducted is striking in the extreme.