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Fleet Street Tributaries. ]
A RARE LAWYER.
In spite of all bad proclivities, Shire Lane had In that delightful collection of Pope's “Table its fits of respectability. In 1603 there was living Talk," called “Spence's Anecdotes," we find that there Sir Arthur Atie, Knt., in early life secretary a chance remark of Lord Bolingbroke, on taking to the great Earl of Leicester, and afterwards up a "Horace" in Pope's sick-room, led to those attendant on his step-son, the luckless Earl of Essex. fine “Imitations of Horace" which we now possess. Elias Ashmole, the great antiquary and student in The "First Satire" consists of an imaginary conalchemy and astrology, also honoured this lane, versation between Pope and Fortescue, who advises but he gathered in the Temple those great col- him to write no more dangerous invectives against lections of books and coins, some of which perished vice or folly. It was Fortescue who assisted Pope by fire, and some of which he afterwards gave to in writing the humorous law-report of “Stradling the University of Oxford, where they were placed versus Stiles,” in “Scriblerus." The intricate case in a building called, in memory of the illustrious is this, and is worthy of Anstey himself : Sir John collector, the Ashmolean Museum.
Swale, of Swale's Hall, in Swale Dale, by the river To Mr. Noble's research we are indebted for the Swale, knight, made his last will and testament, knowledge that in 1767 Mr. Hoole, the translator of in which, among other bequests, was this: “Out Tasso, was living in Shire Lane, and from thence of the kind love and respect that I bear my muchwrote to Dr. Percy, who was collecting his “Ancient honoured and good friend, Mr. Matthew Stradling, Ballads,” to ask him Dr. Wharton's address. Hoole gent., I do bequeath unto the said Matthew Strad. was at that time writing a dramatic piece called ling, gent., all my black and white horses.” Now Cyrus, for Covent Garden Theatre. He seems to the testator had six black horses, six white, and have been an amiable man but a feeble poet, was six pied horses. The debate, therefore, was whether an esteemed friend of Dr. Johnson, and had a the said Matthew Stradling should have the said situation in the East India House.
pied horses, by virtue of the said bequest. The Another illustrious tenant of Shire Lane was case, after much debate, is suddenly terminated James Perry, the proprietor of the Morning by a motion in arrest of judgment that the pied Chronicle, who died, as it was reported, worth horses were mares, and thereupon an inspection was £130,000. That lively memoir-writer, Taylor, of prayed. This, it must be confessed, is admirable the Sun, who wrote “Monsieur Tonson,” describes fooling. If the Scriblerus Club had carried out Perry as living in the narrow part of Shire Lane, their plan of bantering the follies of the followers opposite a passage which led to the stairs from of every branch of knowledge, Fortescue would no Boswell Court. He lodged with Mr. Lunan, a doubt have selected the law as his special butt. bookbinder, who had married his sister, who " This friend of Pope,” says Mr. Carruthers, “was subsequently became the wife of that great Greek consulted by the poet about all his affairs, as scholar, thirsty Dr. Porson. Perry had begun life well as those of Martha Blount, and, as may be as the editor of the Gazeteer, but being dis- gathered, he gave him advice without a fee. The missed by a Tory proprietor, and the intercourse between the poet and his learned Morning Chronicle being abandoned by Wood-counsel' was cordial and sincere ; and of the letters fall, some friends of Perry's bought the derelict that passed between them sixty-eight have been for £210, and he and Gray, a friend of Barett, published, ranging from 1714 to the last year of became the joint-proprietors of the concern. Their Pope's life. They are short, unaffected lettersprinter, Mr. Lambert, lived in Shire Lane, and more truly letters than any others in the series." here the partners, too, lived for three or four years, Fortescue was promoted to the bench of the when they removed to the corner-house of Lancaster Exchequer in 1735, from thence to the Common Court, Strand.
Pleas in 1738, and in 1741 was made Master of Bell Yard can boast of but few associations; yet the Rolls. Pope's letters are often addressed to Pope often visited the dingy passage, because there “ his counsel learned in the law, at his house at the for some years resided his old friend Fortescue, upper end of Bell Yard, near unto Lincoln's Inn.” then a barrister, but afterwards a judge and Master In March, 1736, he writes of " that filthy old place, of the Rolls. To Fortescue Pope dedicated his Bell Yard, which I want them and you to quit.” "Imitation of the First Satire of Horace," pub- Apollo Court, next Bell Yard, has little about it
It contains what the late Mr. worthy of notice beyond the fact that it derived Rogers, the banker and poet, used to consider the its name from the great club-room at the “Devil" best line Pope ever wrote, and it is certainly Tavern, that once stood on the opposite side of almost perfect,
Fleet Street, and the jovialities of which we have “ Bare the mean heart that lurks behind a star." already chronicled.
lished in 1733.
FLEET STREET (NORTHERN TRIBUTARIES-CHANCERY LANE).
The Asylum for Jewish Converts—The Rolls Chapel-Ancient Monuments-A Speaker Expelled for Bribery~"Remember Czesar"–Trampling
OR a Master of the Rolls-Sir William Grant's Oddities--Sir John Leach-Funeral of Lord Gifford-Mrs. Clark and the Duke of YorkWolsey in his Pomp-Strafford—“Honest Isaak”—The Lord Keeper-Lady Fanshawe-Jack Randal—Serjcants' Inn-An Evening with Hazlitt at the “Southampton "-Charles Lamb-Sheridan- The Sponging Houses—The Law Institute-A Tragical Story.
CHANCERY, or Chancellor's, Lane, as it was first Edward III., in 1377, broke up the Jewish called, must have been a mere quagmire, or cart- almshouse in Chancellor's Lane, and annexed the track, in the reign of Edward I., for Strype tells house and chapel to the newly-created office of us that at that period it had become so impassable Custos Rotulorum, or Keeper of the Rolls. Some to knight, monk, and citizen, that John Breton, of the stones the old gaberdines have rubbed Custos of London, had it barred up, to “hinder against are no doubt incorporated in the present any harm;" and the Bishop of Chichester, whose chapel, which, however, has been so often altered, house was there (now Chichester Rents), kept up that, like the Highlandman's gun, it is "new stock the bar ten years; at the end of that time, on and new barrel.” The first Master of the Rolls, an inquisition of the annoyances of London, the in 1377, was William Burstal; but till Thomas bishop was proscribed at an inquest for setting up Cromwell, in 1534, the Masters of the Rolls were two staples and a bar, “whereby men with carts generally priests, and often king's chaplains. and other carriages could not pass." The bishop The Rolls Chapel was built, says Pennant, by pleaded John Breton's order, and the sheriff was Inigo Jones, in 1617, at a cost of £2,000. Dr.Donne, then commanded to remove the annoyance, and the poet, preached the consecration sermon. One the hooded men with their carts once more cracked of the monuments belonging to the earlier chapel their whips and whistled to their horses up and is that of Dr. John Yonge, Master of the Rolls in down the long disused lane.
the reign of Henry VIII. Vertue and Walpole Half-way up on the east side of Chancery Lane attribute the tomb to Torregiano, Michael Angelo's a dull archway, through which can be caught contemporary and the sculptor of the tomb of glimpses of the door of an old chapel, leads to the Henry VII. at Westminster. The master is repreRolls Court. On the site of that chapel, in the sented by the artist (who starved himself to death year 1233, history tells us that Henry III. erected at Seville) in effigy on an altar-tomb, in a red gown a Carthusian house of maintenance for converted and deep square cap; his hands are crossed, his Jews, who there lived under a Christian governor. face wears an expression of calm resignation and At a time when Norman barons were not unac- profound devotion. In a recess at the back is a customed to pull out a Jew's teeth, or to fry head of Christ, and an angel's head appears on either him on gridirons till he paid handsomely for his side in high relief. Another monument of interest release, conversion, which secured safety from such in this quiet, legal chapel is that of Sir Edward rough practices, may not have been unfrequent. Bruce, created by James I. Baron of Kinloss. He However, the converts decreasing when Edward I., was one of the crafty ambassadors sent by wily after hanging 280 Jews for clipping coin, banished James to openly congratulate Elizabeth on the the rest from the realm, half the property of the failure of the revolt of Essex, but secretly to comJews who were hung stern Edward gave to the mence a correspondence with Cecil. The place of preachers who tried to convert the obstinate and Master of the Rolls was Bruce's reward for this useful stiff-necked generation, and half to the Domus service. The ex-master lies with his head resting on Conversorum, in Chancellor's Lane. In 1278 we his hand, in the “toothache" attitude ridiculed by find the converts calling themselves, in a letter the old dramatists. His hair is short, his beard sent to the king by John the Convert, “ Pauperes long, and he wears a long furred robe. Before him Coelicolæ Christi." In the reign of Richard II. kneels a man in armour, possibly his son, Lord a certain converted Jew received twopence a day Kinloss, who, three years after his father's death, for life; and in the reign of Henry IV. we find perished in a most savage duel with Sir Edward the daughter of a rabbi paid by the keepers of Sackville, ancestor to the Earls of Elgin and the house of converts a penny a day fos life, by Aylesbury. Another fine monument is that of Sir special patent.
Richard Allington, of Horseheath, Cambridgeshire,
Fleet Street Tributaries.]
NOT DEAD, BUT BURIED.
brother-in law of Sir William Cordall, a former of William of Orange, was preacher here for nine Master of the Rolls, who died in 1561. Clad in years, and here delivered his celebrated sermon, armour, Sir Richard kneels,
Save me from the lion's mouth : thou hast heard me from the horns of the unicorn.”
appointed by Sir Harbottle, who was Master of
the Rolls; and in his “Own Times" he has inserted His wife faces liim, and beneath on a tablet kneel a warm eulogy of Sir Harbottle as a worthy and their three daughters. Sir Richard's charitable pious man. Atterbury, the Jacobite Bishop of widow lived after his death in Holborn, in a house Rochester, was also preacher here ; nor can we long known as Allington Place. Many of the past forget that amiable man and great theologian, masters sleep within these walls, and amongst them Bishop Butler, the author of the “Analogy of Sir John Trevor, who died in 1717 (George I.), Religion.” Butler, the son of a Dissenting tradesand Sir John Strange; but the latter has not had man at Wantage, was for a long time lost in a inscribed over his bones, as Pennant remarks, the small country living, a loss to the Church which old punning epitaph,
Archbishop Blackbume lamented to Queen Caroline.
“Why, I thought he had been dead !” exclaimed “Here lies an honest lawyer-that is Strange!"
“No, madam," replied the archThe above-mentioned Sir John Trevor, while bishop; "he is only buried." In 1718 Butler was Speaker of the House of Commons, being denounced appointed preacher at the Rolls by Sir Joseph for bribery, was compelled himself to presid ,over Jekyll. This excellent man afterwards became the subsequent debate—an unparalleled disgrace. Bishop of Bristol, and died Bishop of Durham. The indictment ran :
A few anecdotes about past dignitaries at the “That Sir John Trevor, Speaker of the House, Rolls. Of Sir Julius Cæsar, Master of the Rolls in receiving a gratuity of 1,000 guineas from the City the reign of Charles I., Lord Clarendon, in his of London, after the passing of the Orphans' Bill, “ History of the Rebellion," tells a story too good is guilty of high crime and misdemeanour.” Trevor to be passed by. This Sir Julius, having by right was himself, as Speaker, compelled to put this re- of office the power of appointing the six clerks, solution from the chair. The "Ayes” were not met designed one of the profitable posts for his son, by a single “No," and the culprit was required to Robert Cæsar. One of the clerks dying before officially announce that, in the unanimous opinion Sir Julius could appoint his son, the imperious of the House over which he presided, he stood treasurer, Sir Richard Weston, promised his place convicted of a high crime. “ His expulsion from to a dependant of his, who gave him for it £6,000 the House,” says Mr. Jeaffreson, in his “Book down. The vexation of old Sir Julius at this arbiabout Lawyers," "followed in due course. One trary step so moved his friends, that King Charles is inclined to think that in these days no English was induced to promise Robert Cæsar the next gentleman could outlive such humiliation for four-post in the clerks' office that should fall vacant, and-twenty hours. Sir John Trevor not only and the Lord Treasurer was bound by this prosurvived the humiliation, but remained a personage mise. One day the Earl of Tullibardine, passionof importance in London society. Convicted of ately pressing the treasurer about his business, was bribery, he was not called upon to refund the told by Sir Richard that he had quite forgotten bribe ; and expelled from the House of Commons, the matter, but begged for a memorandum, that he was not driven from his judicial office. He he might remind the king that very afternoon. continued to be the Master of the Rolls till his The earl then wrote on a small bit of paper the death, which took place on May 20, 1717, in his words, "Remember Cæsar!” and Sir Richard, official mansion in Chancery Lane. His retention without reading it, placed it carefully in a little of office is easily accounted for. Having acted pocket, where he said he kept all the memorials as a vile negotiator between the two great political first to be transacted. Many days passed, and parties, they were equally afraid of him. Neither the ambitious treasurer forgot all about Cæsar. the Whigs nor the Tories dared to demand his At length one night, changing his clothes, his expulsion from office, fearing that in revenge he servant brought him the notes and papers from would make revelations alike disgraceful to all his pocket, which he looked over according to his parties concerned.”
custom. Among these he found the little billet The arms of Sir Robert Cecil and Sir Harbottle with merely the words “Remember Cæsar !" and Grimstone gleam in the chapel windows. Swift's on the sight of this the arrogant yet timid courtier detestation, Bishop Burnet, the historian and friend was utterly confounded. Turning pale, he sent
Fleet Street Tributaries.]
“REMEMBER CÆSAR !"
for his bosom friends, showed them the paper, and Cæsar for paving the part of Chancery Lane over
one day hustled and fore persuaded him
trampled on him in to be at once indis.
a riot in Lincoln's posed, and not ven
Hoture forth in that
garth, who painted neighbourhood, nor
his “ Gin Lane” to to admit to an au
express his alarm dience any but per
and disgust at the sons of undoubted
growing intempeaffection. At night
rance of the London the gates were shut
poor, has in one of and barred early,
his extraordinary and the porter
pictures represented solemnly enjoined
a low fellow writing not to open them
J. J. under a gibbet. to any one, or to
Sir William Grant, venture on even a
who succeeded Lord moment's sleep.
Alvanley, was the Some servants were
last Master but one sent to watch with
that resided in the him, and the friends
Rolls. He had sat up all night to
practised at the await the event.
Canadian bar, and “Such houses,” says
on returning to EngClarendon, who did
land attracted the not like the trea
attention of Lord surer, “are always
Thurlow, then chanin the morning
cellor. He was an haunted by early
admirable speaker suitors ;" but it was
in the House, and very late before any
even Fox is said to one could now get
have girded him
m admittance into the
self tighter for an house, the porter IZAAK WALTON'S HOUSE (see page 82).
encounter with such having tasted some
an adversary. "He of the arrears of sleep which he owed to him- used,” says Mr. Cyrus Jay, in his amusing book, self for his night watching, which he accounted “The Law,” “to sit from five o'clock till one, and for to his acquaintance by whispering to them seldom spoke during that time. He dined before " that his lord should have been killed that night, going into court, his allowance being a bottle of which nad kept all the house from going to bed.” Madeira at dinner and a bottle of port after. He Shortly afterwards, however, the Earl of Tulli- dined alone, and the unfortunate servant was bardine asking the treasurer whether he had re-expected to anticipate his master's wishes by membered Cæsar, the treasurer quickly recollected intuition. Sir William never spoke if he could the ground of his perturbation, could not forbear help it. On one occasion when the favourite dish imparting it to his friends, and so the whole jest of a leg of pork was on the table, the servant saw came to be discovered.
by Sir William's face that something was wrong, In 1614, £6 125. 6d. was claimed by Sir Julius but he could not tell what. Suddenly a thought