Brander, Gustavus

, esq. F. R. S. and F. S. A. and a trustee of the British Museum, was a Swede by family, born about the year 172u, and brought up to trade, which he carried on so successfully as to fill the honourable office of Director of the Bank for many years; and having inherited the accumulated fortune of his uncle, Mr. Spicker, he indulged his favourite pursuits in literature and the fine arts. He had a mind strongly tinctured with the love of literature, and a heart which was always most gratified in employing his great fortune in acts of beneficence, and in forming those collections which administer to the researches of literary men. Atnong his principal curiosities was the magnificent chair in which the first emperors of Germany used to be crowned; which being taken by Gustavus Adolphus in his wars, and carried into Sweden, was brought over from thence, and purchased by Mr. Brander; and afterwards sold to lord Folkestone, on his going to Christchurch. It contained all the Roman history, from its beginning to the emperors, wrought in polished iron. In 1766 he removed from London to Westminster, and afterwards into Hampshire, where he purchased the site of the old priory at Christ- church, in removing the ruins of which several curious discoveries were made, some of which are inserted in the Archaeologia, vol. IV. Having completed his villa and gardens in this beautiful spot, commanding an extensive view of the British channel, and the Isle of Wight, he married Jan. 1780, Elizabeth, widow of John, Lloyd, vice-admiral of the blue, daughter of Gulston of Widdial, Hertfordshire and spent the greatest part of the year in the society of his friends and neighbours of the adjacent counties, and of others who visited him from London. In the winter of 1786, he had just completed the purchase of a capital house in St. Alban’s street, when he | was unexpectedly seized with a strangury, which carried him off, Jan. 21, 1787.

A singular accident happened to him in 1768, which had so strong an effect upon his mind, that it infused into his character an ardent sense of piety, and a peculiar reliance upon the superintendance of Providence, both which he preserved to the last. As his carriage was passing down, Temple-lane, the horses suddenly took fright, and ran with the most violent rapidity down three flights of steps into the Thames, and would have proceeded into the middle of it, if the wheels had not been so clogged by the mud, that the horses could not drag them any further. The servant behind was so absorbed in terror, that he was unable to throw himself from the carriage; but as soon as it stopped he jumped off, and procured the assistance of some persons from a neighbouring public house, who, after disengaging the horses, pulled the carriage on shore. In consequence of the above circumstance, the present gateway at the Temple-stairs was erected to prevent any future accident of the same kind. Mr. Brander from a sense of this singular preservation, made the following bequest “Two guineas to the vicar, ten shillings to the clerk, and five to the sexton of the parish of Christ-church, for a commemoration sermon on the third Sunday in August, as an everlasting memorial, and us expressive of my gratitude to the Supreme Being for my signal preservation in 1768, when my horses ran violently down the Temple-lane, in London, and down three flights of steps into the Thames in a dark night; and yet neither horses nor carriage, myself, or servants, received the least injury; it was fortunately low water.

To Mr. Brander, the British Museum is indebted for a capital collection of fossils found in the cliffs about Christchurch and the coast of Hampshire; which were published at his expence, in a thin quarto volume, entitled “Fossilia Hantohiensia collecta, et in Museo Britannico deposita, a Gustavo Brander,1766. Of these curious fossil-shells, collected pat of the cliffs between Christ-church and Lymington, very few are known to be natives of our own, or indeed of any of the European shores; the greater part, upon a comparison with the recent, are wholly unknown to us. The copper-plates are exact draughts, en^ -aved from the originals, by the late Mr. Green. To the figures were annexed a scientific Latin description by Dr. | Solander (whilst composing a scientific catalogue of all the natural productions in the British Museum), and a prefatory account of these phenomena in Latin and English. Mr. Bra;ider also communicated an account of the effect of lightning on the Danish church in Wellclose-square, Phil. Trans, vol. XLIV. And from a ms. in his possession, “The Forme of Cury” was printed for private use, with notes by the rev. Dr. Pegge, for whose fine portrait, by Basire, we are likewise indebted to Mr. Brander’s munificence. It yet remains to be noticed that he was one of the first supporters of the society for the encouragement of arts. 1


Nichols’s Bowyer.