10 s. xii. DEC. 25, 1909.] NOTES AND QUERIES.
at some time or other may be led to sum up the whole evidence, and so it will not be out of place to mention that a letter of mine upon this subject appeared in The Athenaeum on 11 Jan., 1908, and another in The Nation at the end of February or beginning of March of the same year.
NOTES ON BOOKS, &c.
The Last. Journals of Horace Walpole during the Reign of George III. from 1771 to 1783. 2 vols. (John Lane.)
THIS new edition of the ' Journals of Horace Walpole ' is contained in two volumes, well printed, neatly bound, and bearing a book- stamp of the arms of Walpole. The preface and notes to the former edition by Dr. Doran (a name well known to ' N. & Q.') are added ; and a new and interesting Introduction by the editor, Mr. A. Francis Steuart, completes the work, which is illustrated by numerous well-reproduced por- traits of celebrities mentioned in the Journals. We particularly commend to notice the portraits of the beautiful Duchess of Gloucester (Walpole's niece) and the Duchess of Cumberland (Mrs. Horton). There is a copious and convenient Index to each volume.
The last Journals, now before us, contain many invaluable comments on Parliamentary debates, foreign news, and Court gossip, but two principal features are to be noted as permeating both volumes : firstly, the narrative of the marriage of Walpole's niece Maria Walpole, Countess Dowager Waldegrave, to H.R.H. the Duke of Gloucester and of their subsequent married life ; and secondly, the origin and course of the War of Independence in America.
The story of the Duchess of Gloucester is well known. Sir Edward Walpole, the elder brother of the author of these Journals, ran away with a pretty seamstress, Mary Clement ; but, owing to the high position of his father he never dared to marry her. From this illegitimate union came three daughters, and their fortunes are recorded in these Journals by their kindly and observant bachelor uncle.
The second girl, Maria Walpole, married James, second Earl Waldegrave, and after his decease married George III. 's brother the Duke of Gloucester. The marriage was for some time kept quiet, but was ultimately revealed to the King, and acknowledged by him, though with great bitterness, following as it did on the marriage of the Duke of Cumberland to Mrs. Horton. Maria lived and died as Duchess of Gloucester, but her life was somewhat embittered towards its close by the infatuation of the Duke of Gloucester for one of her ladies-in-waiting, the Hon. Almeria Carpenter ; and it is curious to note that the litigation lately subsisting in the Bosville- Macdonald suit suggests that the wife .of the third Lord Macdonald of the Isles, viz., Maria Louisa la Coast, was the child of Almeria Carpenter by the Duke of Gloucester. Horace Walpole does not mention this lady's
birth or her mother's name in his Journals, but the information as to the Duke of Gloucester's association with Almeria Carpenter is supplied by the editor.
As regards the American War, its origin and causes are fully discussed in the middle of the first volume, and an almost weekly diary of the events of the war appears in the subsequent pages.
The Journals in question form a continuation of the same author's ' Memoirs of the Reign of King George III.,' and in Walpole's own words they " are rather calculated for my own amuse- ment than for posterity. I like to keep up the thread of my observations. If they prove useful to anybody else I shall be glad, but I am not to answer for their imperfections."
Horace Walpole was no mere scribbler, but a gentleman holding a position which gave him every chance of exercising his talents of intellec- tual observation and literary application. It is not within the scope of this notice to mention the many items of interest in the Journals r but among the many hundreds of them we would call attention to his description of the heated debates on the Royal Marriage Bill ; the failure of the Scottish banks ; the right of the Commons to control the finances of the realm ; the descrip- tion of the appearance of Lord Chatham when in bed with the gout ; the insignificance of German
Erinces and princesses as compared with our own igh nobility; the Gordon Riots; and the births, deaths, marriages, divorces, and separations which occurred in the Court circles of the times. These are only a sample of the many interesting subjects mentioned in the Journals ; and in the notes will be found biographical references to celebrities, and many quotations and epigrams on the subjects to which they refer.
Horace Walpole, in fine, although a man of strong political bias and a great lover of gossip,, had a genius for friendship, and a fund of sound" sense which adds much to his political writing.
On p. 6 of the editor's Introduction we notice two misprints in the middle of the page, where the " second Earl of Oxford " should in both instances be the second Earl of Orford. We heartily commend the volumes to our readers.
A History of the Oxford Museum. By H. M. and K. Dorothea Vernon. (Oxford, Clarendon Press. )
ENGLISH science had its birth in Oxford. The members of the seventeenth-century " Philo- sophical Society," as it was called Wallis,. Bathurst, Petty, Willis, Seth Ward (expelled from Cambridge by the Puritans), Sydenham, Christopher Wren, and Robert Boyle fled from the fumum et opes, strepitumque of the metro- polis to gather in the peaceful hall and garden of Wadham College, under the leadership of its enlightened Warden, Dr. Wilkins ; the oldest Museum, the oldest Physick Garden, in England, still preserve the names of Elias Ashmole, of Lord Danby and the two Tradescants. But Restora- tion decadence crushed the newborn impulse : philosophy was scoffed at, discredited, opposed r until in the opening nineteenth century it was represented only by two or three professors,, who drew meagre salaries, and gave no lectures. The pioneers of its revival were Daubeny and Buckland ; but Daubeny, though widely learned and an able writer, was helpless as a teacher, and Buckland, a brilliant lecturer and a great