WOBO: Search for words and phrases in the texts here...

Enter either the ID of an entry, or one or more words to find. The first match in each paragraph is shown; click on the line of text to see the full paragraph.

Currently only Chalmers’ Biographical Dictionary is indexed, terms are not stemmed, and diacritical marks are retained.

and a review of the works of the writers called Infidels, from lord Herbert of Cherbury to the late lord viscount Bolingbroke. With a variety of disquisitions and opinions

In 1755 he published “Memoirs, containing the lives of several ladies of Great Britain.” “A history of antiquities, productions of nature, and monuments of art.” “Observations on the Christian religion, as professed by the established church and dissenters of every denomination.” “Remarks on the writings of the greatest English divines: and a review of the works of the writers called Infidels, from lord Herbert of Cherbury to the late lord viscount Bolingbroke. With a variety of disquisitions and opinions relative to criticism and manners; and many extraordinary actions. In several letters,” 8vo.

ed from the post of secretary of state; in which he was succeeded by Henry St. John, esq. afterwards lord viscount Bolingbroke. “I never,” says Swift, “remember such

, Lord Carleton, and lord president of the council in the reign of king George I. was descended from Richard Boyle, first earl of Cork in Ireland, and was third son of Charles lord Clifford of Lanesborough in the county of York, by Jane, youngest daughter of William Seymour, duke of Somerset. Being elected a member of the house of commons, he scon distinguished himself to such advantage, that in March 1700-1, he was appointed chancellor and nnder-treasurer of the exchequer by king William, and was admitted into a high degree of favour and confidence with that prince. He continued in that post till the 11th of February, 1707-8, when he was made one of the principal secretaries of state, in the room of Robert Harley, esq. and was consequently one of the ministry when the reputation of England was carried to so great an height, and when the queen obtained so many successes in defence of the common cause of Europe. In this station he took all occasions of shewing his regard for men of genius and learning; and soon after the battle of Blenheim, was employed by the lord treasurer Godolphin, at the solicitation of the lord Halifax, to go to Mr. Addison, and desire him to write some piece, which might transmit the memory of that glorious victory to posterity. Mr. Addison, who was at that time but indifferently lodged, was surprised with this visit from a person of Mr. Boyle’s rank and station; who, after having acquainted him with his business, added, that the lord treasurer, to encourage him to enter upon this subject, had already made him one of the commissioners of the appeals; but entreated him to look upon that post only as an earnest of something more considerable. In short, Mr. Boyle said so many obliging things, and in so graceful a manner, as gave Mr. Addison the utmost spirit and encouragement to begin that poem, which he entitled “The Campaign;” soon after the publication of which, he was, according to Mr. Boyle’s promise, preferred to a considerable post. In 1710, Mr. Boyle was one of the managers at the trial of Dr. Sacheverell; but upon the general change of the ministry, not long after, was dismissed from the post of secretary of state; in which he was succeeded by Henry St. John, esq. afterwards lord viscount Bolingbroke. “I never,” says Swift, “remember such bold steps taken by a court; I am almost shocked at it, though I did not care if they were all hanged.” Upon the accession of his late majesty king George I. in 1714, he was created a baron of this kingdom, by the title of baron Carleton of Carleton, in the county of York, and was soon after made lord president of the council, in which post he continued till his death, which happened on Sunday the 14th of March, 1724-5, at his house in Pall-mall, now the residence of his royal highness the Prince Regent. Mr. Budgell tells us, that he was endowed with great prudence and a winning address; and that his long experience in public affairs had given him a thorough knowledge in business. He spoke frequently while he was a member of the house of commons; and it was allowed by very good judges, that he was never once known to say an imprudent thing in a public debate, or to hurt the cause which he engaged in; a circumstance peculiar to himself above most other speakers in so public an assembly. The author of the “Spectator,” in the dedication to him of the third volume of that work, observes likewise, that there was no person, whose merit was more universally acknowledged by all parties, and who had made himself more friends and fewer enemies: that his great abilities and unquestioned integrity in those high employments which he had passed through, would not have been able to have raised this general approbation, had they not been accompanied with that moderation in a high fortune, and that affability of manners, which were so conspicuous through all parts of his life: that his aversion to any ostentatious arts of setting to show those great services which he had done the public, contributed likewise not a little to that universal acknowledgment which was paid him by his country: and that he was equally remarkable for the great figure which he made in the senate, as for that elegance and politeness, which appeared in his more retired conversation. Davis, in his characters published under the name of Mackay, says of him, “He is a good companion in conversation; agreeable among the ladies; serves the queen very assiduously in council; makes a considerable figure in the house of commons; by his prudent administration obliges every body in the exchequer; and in time may prove a great man.” To this Swift added in his copy of the book, “had some very scurvy qualities, particularly avarice.

m at this time introducing Wycherley and Pope to the acquaintance of Henry St. John, esq. afterwards lord viscount Bolingbroke. This friend, then displaced, having formed

In this situation he diverted himself among his brother poets; and we find him at this time introducing Wycherley and Pope to the acquaintance of Henry St. John, esq. afterwards lord viscount Bolingbroke. This friend, then displaced, having formed a design of celebrating such of the poets of that age as he thought deserved any notice, had applied for a character of the former to our author, who, in reply, having done justice to Mr. Wycherley’s merit, concludes his letter thus: “In short, Sir,” I'll have you judge for yourself. I am not satisfied with this imperiect sketch name your day, and I will bring you together; I shall have both your thanks let it be at my lodging. I can give you no Falernian that has out-lived twenty consulships, but I can promise you a bottle of good claret, that has seen two reigns. Horatian wit will not be wanting when you meet. He shall bring with him, if you will, a youngpoet newly inspired in the neighbourhood of Cooper’shill, whom he and Walsh have taken under their wing. His name is Pope, he is not above seventeen or eighteen years of age, and promises miracles. If he goes on as he has becrun in the pastoral way, as Virgil first tried hu strength, we may hope to see English poetry vie with the Roman, and this Swan of Windsor sing as sweetly as the Mantuan. I expect your answer."

lord viscount Bolingbroke, an eminent statesman and writer, was descended

, lord viscount Bolingbroke, an eminent statesman and writer, was descended from an ancient and noble family, and born, as all his biographers say, in 1672, but it appears by the register of Battersea parish that he was baptised Oct. 10, 1678. His father, sir Henry St. John, son of sir Walter St. John, died at Battersea, his family-seat, July 3, 1708, in his eighty- seventh year his mother was lady Mary, second daughter and coheiress of Robert Rich, earl of Warwick. He was bred up, with great care, under the inspection of his grandfather, as well as his father, who neglected no means to cultivate his mind. It was once noticed in parliament that he was educated in dissenting principles, and it is very certain that the first director of his studies was the famous Daniel Burgess, who, with all his oddities (See Burgess) was frequently employed as tutor to the sons of men of rank. Goldsmith seems desirous to impute Bolingbroke’s infidelity to this divine, and to his being obliged to read Manton’s Sermons on the 119th Psalm but such an opinion is as dangerous as it is absurd. From Burgess or Manton, he could have imbibed only a higher reverence for religion than was to be expected from a lively youth; and as to the disgust he felt, to which his biographer seems inclined to trace his infidelity, it is probable that a boy would not have entertained much less dislike to a voluminous history of England, if obliged to read it when he wished to be idle. But, whatever instruction he might receive from his first tutors, it is very certain, that he had a regular and liberal education. He was sent to Eton, where he had for his companion and rival sir Robert Waipole. “The parts of Mr. St. John,” says Coxe, “were more lively and brilliant, those of Walpole more steady and solid. Walpole was industrious and diligent, because his talents required application; St. John was negligent, because his quickness of apprehension rendered labour less necessary.” These characteristics prevailed in both throughout life. From Eton Mr. St. John was removed to Christ-church, Oxford, where he made a shining figure as a polite scholar, and when he left the university, he was considered as a youth highly accomplished for public life. His person was agreeable, and he had a dignity mixed with sweetness in his looks, and a manner very prepossessing, and, as some of his contemporaries said, irresistible. He had much acuteness, great judgment, and a prodigious memory. Whatever he read he retained so as to make it entirely his own; but in youth, he was not in general much given either to reading or reflection. With great parts, he had, as it usually happens, great passions which hurried him into those indiscretions and follies that distinguish the libertine. He does not, however, appear to have been without his serious moments, nor always unwilling to listen to the voice of conscience. “There has been something always,” says he, “ready to whisper in my ear, while I ran the course of pleasure and of business, * Solve senescentem mature sanus equum;‘ < and while ’tis well, release thy aged horse.' But my genius, unlike the demon of Socrates, whispered so softly, that very often I heard him not, in the hurry of those passions with which I was transported. Some calmer hours there were in them I hearkened to him. Reflection had often its turn and the love of study and the desire of knowledge have never quite abandoned me. I am not, therefore, entirely unprepared for the life I will lead; and it is not without reason that I promise myself more satisfaction in the latter part of it than I ever knew in the former.