so probable,’ he added, ‘that any trial for murder at the Old Bailey would make a more interesting story … this is a caput mortuum’ (Walpole, Letters, ed. Cunningham, vii. 51; cf. pp. 111 and 319). Hazlitt characterised ‘Otranto’ and ‘The Old English Baron’ alike as ‘dismal treatises.’ Repeated perusals of it, however, gave Miss Seward ‘unsated pleasure’ (Gent. Mag. 1786, i. 15, 16). Scott, in his ‘Memoir’ for Ballantyne's ‘Novelists' Library’ (1823), denied Clara Reeve a rich or powerful imagination, and found her dialogue ‘sometimes tame and tedious, not to say mean and tiresome,’ though he deemed it in the main sensible, easy, and agreeable.
A portrait of Miss Reeve, drawn by A. H. Tourrier, and etched by Dammam, appears in the 1883 edition of ‘The Old English Baron.’ Another portrait appears in ‘La Belle Assemblée’ (1824, pt. ii.). The memoir in the edition of 1883 is an unacknowledged transcript of Scott's with a few paragraphs omitted.
Other works by Miss Reeve are:
- ‘Poems,’ 1769.
- ‘The Two Mentors: a Modern Story,’ 2 vols. 1783.
- ‘The School for Widows: a novel,’ 3 vols. 1791.
- ‘Plans of Education, with Remarks on the Systems of other Writers,’ 1792.
- ‘The Memoirs of Sir Roger de Clarendon, a natural son of Edward the Black Prince; with Anecdotes of many other eminent persons of the 14th century,’ 3 vols. 1793.
Some of these were translated into French. The British Museum ‘Catalogue’ mentions ‘Fatherless Fanny,’ 1819; ‘Kathleen, or the Secret Marriage,’ 1842; and ‘The Harvest Home,’ as by Miss Reeve, but that she was their author is open to doubt. In the first the last paragraph of the preface is word for word that of ‘The Old English Baron.’ Davy also attributes to her ‘Destination, or Memoirs of a Private Family,’ 1799, 12mo (Athenæ Suffolcenses).
[Allibone's Dict. ii. 1762; Davy's Pedigrees of Suffolk Families (Addit. MS. 19146, ff. 225–8); Dunlop's Hist. of Fiction, 1845, p. 414; Gent. Mag. 1807, ii. 1233.]
REEVE, EDMUND (1585?–1647), judge, son of Christopher Reeve of Felthorpe, Norfolk, was born about 1585, and was admitted to Caius College, Cambridge, 30 Sept. 1605. He studied law at Barnard's, and afterwards at Gray's Inn, of which society he was admitted a member on 8 Aug. 1607, and elected reader in the autumn of 1632. He resided at Norwich, where in 1624 he joined with Francis Bacon in repairing the font in St. Gregory's Church. On the renewal of the charter of Great Yarmouth in 1629 he was appointed recorder of that town. On 20 May 1636 he was called to the degree of serjeant-at-law, and on 24 March 1638–9 he succeeded Sir Richard Hutton [q. v.] as justice of the common pleas. His refusal at the summer assizes of 1640 to proceed upon the indictment of one of the Lambeth rioters evinces his political hostility to the crown; and his continuance in office was one of the stipulations of the parliament in the overtures made to the king in January 1642–3. He afterwards took the covenant, and in Michaelmas 1643, on being served with a writ commanding his attendance at Oxford pursuant to the royal proclamation for the removal of the courts thither, committed the messenger, who was executed as a spy by order of parliament.
Reeve died without issue on 27 March 1647, and was buried in the church at Stratton, Norfolk. He is characterised by Clarendon as ‘a man of good reputation for learning and integrity; and who in good times would have been a good judge.’
[Blomefield's Norfolk, ed. Parkin, iv. 274, v. 190, 192; Swinden's Great Yarmouth, p. 504; Dugdale's Chron. Ser. p. 111; Rymer's Fœdera, ed. Sanderson, xx. 381; Cal. State Papers Dom. 1638–9 pp. 573, 623, 1639 p. 99; Diary of John Rous (Camden Soc.), p. 101; Smith's Obituary (Camden Soc.), p. 23; Clarendon's Rebellion, ed. Macray, bk. v. § 417, vi. § 231, vii. § 317; Rushworth's Hist. Coll. pt. iii. vol. ii. p. 663; Whitelocke's Mem. pp. 76, 78; Comm. Journ. iii. 358, 374; Hist. MSS. Comm. 5th Rep. App. pp. 33, 35, 100–1, 6th Rep. App. p. 46, 7th Rep. App. p. 29, 10th Rep. App. pt. ii. pp. 163, 164, 174, pt. iv. pp. 508–9; Foss's Lives of the Judges.]
REEVE, EDMUND (d. 1660), divine, who is described as B.D., was appointed vicar of Hayes-cum-Norwood, Middlesex, on 30 Oct. 1627. In 1635 he reported that he had erected a new pulpit and seats in his church. He defended the ‘Book of Sports’ as tending to a ‘verie great encrease of godlinesse.’ He also wrote a work in defence of altars, with Richard Shelford and others. This is apparently not extant, but was answered by William Prynne in ‘A Quenche Coale,’ &c., London, 1637. Reeve was apparently rejected by the ‘Triers’ or examiners of the Commonwealth, since we find him in 1648 living in London, near the Old Bailey, teaching Latin, Greek, and Hebrew. He died in 1660.
- ‘A Treatise concerning Tongues,’ n.d.
- ‘The Christian Divinitie contained in the Divine Service of the Church of England,’ London, 1631, 4to.
- ‘The Communion Book Catechisme expounded,’ London, 1635, 4to.
- ‘A Way unto true Christian Unitie,’ London, 1648, 4to.