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938
CHARLES ALBERT

until in 1786 Charles had seven masters to whom he paid £10 per annum; in 1787, twelve; in 1789, fifteen; in 1794, twenty. By this time the salary had been increased to £12; in 1801 it was £14. He had learnt of Raikes’s Sunday Schools before he left the Establishment, but he rightly considered the system set on foot by himself far superior; the work and object being the same, he gave six days’ tuition for every one given by them, and many people not only objected to working as teachers on Sunday, but thought the children forgot in the six days what they learnt on the one. But Sunday Schools were first adopted by Charles to meet the case of young people in service who could not attend during the week, and even in that form much opposition was shown to them because teaching was thought to be a form of Sabbath breaking. His first Sunday School was in 1787. Wilberforce, Charles Grant, John Thornton and his son Henry, were among the philanthropists who contributed to his funds; in 1798 the Sunday School Society (established 1785) extended its operations to Wales, making him its agent, and Sunday Schools grew rapidly in number and favour. A powerful revival broke out at Bala in the autumn of 1791, and his account of it in letters to correspondents, sent without his knowledge to magazines, kindled a similar fire at Huntly. The scarcity of Welsh bibles was Charles’s greatest difficulty in his work. John Thornton and Thomas Scott helped him to secure supplies from the Society for the Promotion of Christian Knowledge from 1787 to 1789, when the stock became all but exhausted. In 1799 a new edition was brought out by the Society, and he managed to secure 700 copies of the 10,000 issued; the Sunday School Society got 3000 testaments printed, and most of them passed into his hands in 1801.

In 1800, when a frost-bitten thumb gave him great pain and much fear for his life, his friend, Rev. Philip Oliver of Chester, died, leaving him director and one of three trustees over his chapel at Boughton; and this added much to his anxiety. The Welsh causes at Manchester and London, too, gave him much uneasiness, and burdened him with great responsibilities at this juncture. In November 1802 he went to London, and on the 7th of December he sat at a committee meeting of the Religious Tract Society, as a country member, when his friend, Joseph Tarn—a member of the Spa Fields and Religious Tract Society committees—introduced the subject of a regular supply of bibles for Wales. Charles was asked to state his case to the committee, and so forcibly did he impress them, that it was there and then decided to move in the matter of a general dispersion of the bible. When he visited London a year later, his friends were ready to discuss the name of a new Society, and the sole object of which should be to supply bibles. Charles returned to Wales on the 30th of January 1804, and the British and Foreign Bible Society was formally and publicly inaugurated on March the 7th. The first Welsh testament issued by that Society appeared on the 6th of May 1806, the bible on the 7th of May 1807—both being edited by Charles.

Between 1805 and 1811 he issued his Biblical Dictionary in four volumes, which still remains the standard work of its kind in Welsh. Three editions of his Welsh catechism were published for the use of his schools (1789, 1791 and 1794); an English catechism for the use of schools in Lady Huntingdon’s Connexion was drawn up by him in 1797; his shorter catechism in Welsh appeared in 1799, and passed through several editions, in Welsh and English, before 1807, when his Instructor (still the Connexional catechism) appeared. From April 1799 to December 1801 six numbers of a Welsh magazine called Trysorfa Ysprydol (Spiritual Treasury) were edited by Thomas Jones of Mold and himself; in March 1809 the first number of the second volume appeared, and the twelfth and last in November 1813.

The London Hibernian Society asked him to accompany Dr David Bogue, the Rev. Joseph Hughes, and Samuel Mills to Ireland in August 1807, to report on the state of Protestant religion in the country. Their report is still extant, and among the movements initiated as a result of their visit was the Circulating School system. In 1810, owing to the growth of Methodism and the lack of ordained ministers, he led the Connexion in the movement for connexionally ordained ministers, and his influence was the chief factor in the success of that important step. From 1811 to 1814 his energy was mainly devoted to establishing auxiliary Bible Societies. By correspondence he stimulated some friends in Edinburgh to establish charity schools in the Highlands, and the Gaelic School Society (1811) was his idea. His last work was a corrected edition of the Welsh Bible issued in small pica by the Bible Society. As a preacher he was in great request, though possessing but few of the qualities of the popular preacher. All his work received very small remuneration; the family was maintained by the profits of a business managed by Mrs Charles—a keen, active and good woman. He died on the 5th of October 1814. His influence is still felt, and he is rightly claimed as one of the makers of modern Wales.  (D. E. J.) 


CHARLES ALBERT [Carlo Alberto] (1798-1849), king of Sardinia (Piedmont), son of Prince Charles of Savoy-Carignano and Princess Albertine of Saxe-Courland, was born on the 2nd of October 1798, a few days before the French occupied Piedmont and forced his cousin King Charles Emmanuel to take refuge in Sardinia. Although Prince and Princess Carignano adhered to the French Republican regime, they soon fell under suspicion and were summoned to Paris. Prince Charles died in 1800, and his widow married a Count de Montléart and for some years led a wandering existence, chiefly in Switzerland, neglecting her son and giving him mere scraps of education, now under a devotee of J. J. Rousseau, now under a Genevan Calvinist. In 1802 King Charles Emmanuel abdicated in favour of his brother Victor Emmanuel I.; the latter's only son being dead, his brother Charles Felix was heir to the throne, and after him Charles Albert. On the fall of Napoleon in 1814 the Piedmontese court returned to Turin and the king was anxious to secure the succession for Charles Albert, knowing that Austria meditated excluding him from it in favour of an Austrian archduke, but at the same time he regarded him as an objectionable person on account of his revolutionary upbringing. Charles Albert was summoned to Turin, given tutors to instruct him in legitimist principles, and on the 1st of October 1817 married the archduchess Maria Theresa of Tuscany, who, on the 14th of March 1820, gave birth to Victor Emmanuel, afterwards king of Italy.

The Piedmontese government at this time was most reactionary, and had made a clean sweep of all French institutions. But there were strong Italian nationalists and anti-Austrian tendencies among the younger nobles and army officers, and the Carbonari and other revolutionary societies had made much progress.

Their hopes centred in the young Carignano, whose agreeable manners had endeared him to all, and who had many friends among the Liberals and Carbonari. Early in 1820 a revolutionary movement was set on foot, and vague plans of combined risings all over Italy and a war with Austria were talked of. Charles Albert no doubt was aware of this, but he never actually became a Carbonaro, and was surprised and startled when after the outbreak of the Neapolitan revolution of 1820 some of the leading conspirators in the Piedmontese army, including Count Santorre di Santarosa and Count San Marzano, informed him that a military rising was ready and that they counted on his help (2nd March 1821). He induced them to delay the outbreak and informed the king, requesting him, however, not to punish anyone. On the 10th the garrison of Alessandria mutinied, and two days later Turin was in the hands of the insurgents, the people demanding the Spanish constitution. The king at once abdicated and appointed Charles Albert regent. The latter, pressed by the revolutionists and abandoned by his ministers, granted the constitution and sent to inform Charles Felix, who was now king, of the occurrence. Charles Felix, who was then at Modena, repudiated the regent's acts, accepted Austrian military assistance, with which the rising was easily quelled, and exiled Charles Albert to Florence. The young prince found himself the most unpopular man in Italy, for while the Liberals looked on him as a traitor, to the king and the Conservatives he was a dangerous revolutionist. At the Congress of Verona (1822) the Austrian chancellor, Prince Metternich, tried to induce Charles Felix to set aside Charles Albert's rights of succession.