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agents in the establishment of the delinquency of the Company's officers, and ascertaining the causes.
Afterwards, when Dundas was investigating the conduct of Rumbold, some circumstances were brought forward respecting Mr. Hastings, from which Burke conceived that there was ground for an inquiry into his conduct.
In contemplating Indian affairs, the Nabob of Arcot's, conduct and transactions came to be very minutely considered by him, and were the subject of a very able speech in the succeeding session.
This year Burke was chosen Lord Rector . of the University of Glasgow. Having arrived in Edinburgh, he was received with the merited attention by those of the literati of the place who were able to appreciate his extraordinary excellence in that pursuit which had procured themselves so much distinction. Doctors Fergusson and Robertson regarded with the highest esteem a genius so exalted. A gentleman of equal talents,
and now of equal celebrity, being by age more active, undertook to do the literary honours of the Scottish capital to so distinguished a visitant. Mr. Dugald Stewart accompanied Mr. Burke to Glasgow; and then impressed on his fellow traveller the opinion which all literary men, capable of comprehending and estimating philosophic genius, now entertain.
At Glasgow, in the venerable, learned, and eloquent Leechman, and the profound investigator and luminous explainer of the human mind, Reid, Mr. Burke saw that Edinburgh did not monopolize superior genius. With Reid, who, from similarity of minds and studies, was, notwithstanding the great diversity of their age, the most intimate friend of Mr. Stewart, he more frequently associated than with
other of the Glasgow men of learning and ability. He was greatly pleased with a sermon which he heard from Mr. Arthur, one of the clergymen of the city, and afterwards successor to Dr. Reid in the Moral Philosophy chair.
The following account of Mr. Burke's inauguration is extracted from the periodical publications of the time. • April 10th, 178+, the Right Honourable Edmund Burke was installed in the office of Lord Rector of the University of Glasgow; he was attended by several persons of rank and eminence; the spectators were very numerous, and testified their satisfaction by the highest marks of approbation and applause. His Lordship, after taking the oaths of office, addressed the meeting in a very polite and elegant speech, suited to the occasion. Having attended public worship in the College chapel, he was afterwards entertained by the gentlemen of the University
July 14th a cause was tried before Mr. Justice Buller and a special jury for a libel against Mr Burke by the Public Advertiser. Two men had been pillored at Bristol, for an unnatural crime, and had been very severely beaten and abused by the multitude, to the danger of their lives. The humanity of Burke interested itself in the sufferings of wretches, however worthless, when those sufferings arose not from the sentence of the law, but from the violence of individuals. An infamous paragraph appeared in the papers, insinuating that Burke's reprobation proceeded not from abhorrence of the cruelty, but from sympathy with the criminals. So very scandalous a libel was referred by Burke, without any animadversions from himself, to the Attorney-General. A prosecution was commenced, and a hundred and fifty pounds damages awarded to the plaintiff.
About the time that this atrocious calumny appeared against Burke's character, there was a very daring attack made upon his property, and not without success. September 28th, his house at Beaconsfield was broken open, and robbed of a variety of plate and other valuable articles. The robbers proceeded with a degree of deliberation not very common in such adventures. They came down from London in a phaeton, which they had hired in Oxford-street. They broke open a field-gate at the side of the road, op
posite to the avenue which leads to the house, and left their phaeton in a corner of the field. Mr. Burke, was in town, but Mrs. Burke and the rest of the family were at Beaconsfield. The
way into the house through the area. They proceeded to the place where the plate in daily use was kept, the rest being in an iron chest in a pantry, in which the butler slept: having got 150l. worth, they retreated with their booty. They left behind them a match and tinder-box, a sack, a wax taper, a fashionable cane, and an iron "instrument for forcing window-shutters. They also left a tea canister, which they carried out of the house ; but they broke it open, and took out of it all the tea. The robbery was discovered about six o'clock, and a pursuit instantly set on foot, but to no purpose. It was afterwards found that they had crossed the country to Harrow, and from Harrow returned to town, through Islington. The perpetrators were suspected to have been a discharged servant and accomplices, but it was not ascertained.