Open main menu

Page:Dictionary of National Biography volume 07.djvu/375

This page has been proofread, but needs to be validated.

lished, and for the next seven years he was busily employed in the care of the new establishment, and in preaching missions in different parts of Ireland. He was next sent to Rome as prior of the monastery of Irish Dominicans at San Clemente. After the death of Cardinal Wiseman, Burke succeeded Dr. Manning as preacher of the Lenten sermons in English in the church of Santa Maria del Popolo. He continued to preach these sermons for five years. After his return to Ireland he was attached to St. Saviour's Dominican church in Dublin. In 1872 he visited the United States, having been appointed visitor to the houses of the Dominican community on the American continent. He delivered sermons and lectures in all parts of the Union, and acquired extraordinary popularity as an orator. The sum collected or American charities by his sermons reached 100,000l. His lectures in answer to Mr. J. A. Froude, the historian, on the relations between England and Ireland, caused much excitement and produced an animated controversy. The first of these lectures was delivered on 12 Nov. 1872, in the Academy of Music, New York. On leaving the United States he returned to the convent at Tallaght, where he died on 2 July 1883.

His works are: 1. ‘English Misrule in Ireland,’ a course of lectures in reply to Mr. Froude, New York, 1873, 12mo. 2. ‘Ireland's Case stated, in reply to Mr. Froude,’ New York, 1873. 3. ‘Lectures and Sermons,' New York, 1873. 4. ‘Lectures on Faith and Fatherland,' 1874. 5. ‘St. Ignatius and the Jesuits,' a sermon, London, 1880, 8vo.

[Life by W. J. Fitzpatrick, F.S.A., 2 vols. London, 1885 ; Tablet, 7 July 1883 ; Men of the Time (1884), 191 ; Cat. of Printed Books an Brit. Mus.]

T. C.

BURKE, WILLIAM (d. 1798), supposed author of ‘Junius's Letters,’ the son of John and the kinsman of Edmund Burke [q. v.], was born in London, admitted into Westminster 1743, elected to Christ Church, Oxford, 1747, contributed a copy of elegiacs to the university collection on the death of the Prince of Wales in 1751, and took the degree of B.C.L. in 1755 (Welch). [Some notices of William Burke will be found under Edmund Burke.] The two kinsmen were travelling companions in 1752, worked together on the ‘Account of the European Settlements in America,’ which seems to have been written by W. Burke, and joined in befriending Emin the Armenian. Burke came into notice in 1759, as the author of ‘Remarks on the Letter to Two Great Men,’ an answer to Lord Bath's ‘Letter to Pitt and the Duke of Newcastle’ on the prospect of peace. In this pamphlet, and in another entitled ‘An Examination of the Commercial Principles of the late Negotiation,’ 1761, Burke, who held the office of secretary to Guadaloupe in 1762, strongly advocated our retention of the island. In 1763 he appears as the friend of Lord Verney, and a confidential mediator between him and George Grenville (Grenville Papers, ii. 49). He was under-secretary to General Conway, the secretary of state for the southern department, and the following year was moved into the northern department. On the downfall of the Rockingham ministry Burke resigned his office, which brought him 1,000l. a year. ‘To encourage me,’ Edmund Burke wrote, ‘he gave his own interests the first stab.’ By this time it is evident that he must have embarked in speculation. He and Edmund Burke had already befriended James Barry and sent him to Italy, and in a letter written to Barry in 1766 Burke says that their affairs—evidently speaking of his kinsmen Edmund and Richard—were so ‘well arranged’ that they were not uneasy at the prospect of a change in the ministry which would entail loss of place (Barry, Works, i. 77). To his friendship with Lord Verney, who seems to have been a partner in his speculations, Burke owed his return to parliament as member for Great Bedwin, Wiltshire, on 16 June 1766; in March 1768 R. Brudenell was returned in his place, but, as the latter chose another constituency, Burke regained his seat in the following May, and held it until the dissolution in September 1774 (Members of Parliament, ii. 132, 144). Burke did not take a prominent part in the debates of the house. ‘As an orator,’ H. Walpole says, ‘he had neither manner nor talents, and yet wanted little of his cousin's presumption’ (Memoirs of the Reign of George III, ii. 274). He was an active pushing man, well acquainted with the leaders of the whig party, though generally disliked by them. He lived much with his cousin Edmund, first in Queen Anne Street and afterwards at Gregories, and a strong attachment existed between them. For a time Burke's stockjobbing transactions prospered. In 1769, however, the crash came, and he was ruined (Dilke, Papers of a Critic, ii. 334–42). With Dr. Markham, his old schoolmaster, he had long been on terms of friendship. About the time of his disaster, however, their intimacy ceased, and in 1771 Markham, then bishop of Chester, in a letter addressed to Edmund Burke, accused him of saying something in, as it seems, a private