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defeated: and the house of commons obliquely censured the duke, by voting their thanks to his victorious subordinate, who was also rewarded for his valour, with the order of Generosity, by the King of Prussia.
In 1710, when the Tories came into power, Webb was appointed a lieutenant-general and governor of the Isle of Wight; but, on an invasion by the Pretender being apprehended, in 1715, he was dismissed the service. He represented Ludgershall in parliament, from 1707 until 1713, when he was returned for Newport, in the Isle of Wight; but, in 1715, he was again elected for Ludgershall, and continued to sit for it up to the period of his death, which took place in 1724. He
RICHARD, the son of Sir Richard | Temple, who had distinguished himself in many public employments of high trust, at home and abroad, began his public career by entering parliament for the town of Buckingham, in 1694. In the first year of Queen Anne's reign, he was appointed colonel of a regiment of foot, and served with distinction as a volunteer at the sieges of Venloo and Ruremond. He subsequently assisted at the siege of Lille; on the surrender of which, he was sent express, by the Duke of Marlborough, with despatches to the queen. In 1705, he was elected a knight of the shire for Bucks; and, in 1710, having previously attained the rank of lieutenant-general, he procured the command of the fourth regiment of dragoons; which, however, was afterwards taken from him, and given to General Evans.
is described, in the returns to the writs, as residing at Biddesden, in the county of Wilts.
RICHARD TEMPLE, VISCOUNT COBHAM.
On the accession of George the First, he was created a peer, by the title of Baron Cobham, in Kent; and five days after, declared envoy extraordinary and plenipotentiary to the Emperor of Germany. In 1716, he was appointed constable of Windsor castle; in 1718, he was raised to the rank of viscount; and afterwards became colonel of the first regiment of dragoon guards,
General Webb was, unfortunately, addicted to the Thrasonic propensity; the grand circumstance of his life, the battle of Wynendale, subsequently to its occurrence, formed the sole topic of his discourse. On one occasion, while relating the particulars of the contest, for, perhaps, the twentieth time, to the Duke of Argyle, he observed, at a certain point of his narrative, "Here I received four wounds-" "I wish, dear general," interrupted the duke, "that you had received one more, and that it had been in your tongue; for then, every body else would have talked of your action.'
lord-lieutenant and custos rotulorum of Bucks, a privy-counsellor, and governor of the Isle of Jersey.
In September, 1719, he sailed from St. Helens as commander-in-chief of an expedition against the town of Vigo, of which he took possession on the 1st of the following month. The garrison retired into the castle, but surrendered on the 10th, after having made so slight a resistance that the besiegers lost only two officers and three or four men. In the citadel was found an immense quantity of warlike stores, collected, it is said, with a view of making a descent on some part of Great Britain. Two days afterwards, Lord Cobham took Ponte Vedra, which contained four thousand stand of arms, and three hundred barrels of gunpowder. Early in November, he reimbarked with his troops, and returned to England.
In 1733, he was dismissed from all his employments for voting against the excise scheme, and acted conspicuously with the opposition, until Sir Robert Walpole's overthrow in 1742, when he was re-appointed to his military commands, with the additional rank of field-marshal. His last public employment appears to have been as one of the lords justices, during the king's visit to Hanover, in 1745. He died on the
15th of September, 1749; and, leaving no issue, was succeeded, in title and estate, by his sister, the wife of Richard Grenville, Esq. of Wootton.
Lord Cobham was an intrepid and active officer, but owes the perpetuation of his name not so much to his military exploits, as to the poetical adulation with which he was honoured by Pope, and his embellishment of the mansion and gardens of Stowe; where
WILLIAM BLAKENEY was born in 1672, at Mount Blakeney, in Ireland, and when very young, distinguished himself by successfully defending his paternal domain against the attacks of a set of insurgents termed Rapparees, so called from their using a weapon shaped like a rake or rapp, and who sought to obtain possession of the estates, of which Mount Blakeney was one, that had been forfeited by their ancestors. In the beginning of the reign of Queen Anne he served in Flanders, and was made an ensign at the siege of Venloo. He gradually obtained notice, by his strict adherence to discipline, and his great theoretic skill in military affairs. He taught his fellow officers, by whom he was much beloved, the art of war by means of models, of which he possessed a great number; and was, it is said, the first who exercised a corps by beat of drum. He acted as adjutant as often as he was permitted; and, on one occasion, superintended a series of manoeuvres, by the whole allied army, in the presence of some German princes and foreign officers of distinction. After passing many years in neglect, though not in obscurity, he at length obtained, by the interest of the Duke of Richmond, the command of a regiment, with which he served at the fatal attack on Carthagena, which, as it appears, had his advice been adopted, would not have been undertaken.
WILLIAM, LORD BLAKENEY.
In 1745, he defended Stirling castle against the rebels; but, during the siege, acted with such apparent forbearance, that his loyalty was doubted.
his widow, a daughter of Edmund Halsey, Esq. some time member for Southwark, erected a lofty pillar to his memory. His morality is more than questionable. It is said that he reproved obscene discourse, not so much as a sin in the utterer, but as an insult to himself; and infamously attempted to instil principles of infidelity into the minds of young Gilbert West, and George, afterwards Lord Lyttelton.
He suffered the insurgents to raise their works without the least molestation; and his subordinates were actually about to put him under arrest, when he suddenly ordered the guns on the batteries to be loaded with bags of bullets, instead of balls, and directed that they should not be discharged, until the enemy had advanced within a few paces of the battlements. Whole ranks of the Highlanders were, consequently, destroyed, and the siege was almost immediately raised.
In the decline of life, he acted for several years as lieutenant-governor of Minorca, which, at the head of an inefficient garrison, he defended against the French, in 1756, with so much bravery and talent, that, on being compelled to capitulate, he was allowed to march out with all the honours of war, and obtained a conveyance to Gibraltar. Throughout the siege, which lasted seventy days, Blakeney, although eighty-two years of age, never undressed himself, or went into a bed.
On his return to England, the veteran's conduct was severely censured by some time-serving pamphleteers; but the king evinced the satisfaction which he felt at his gallant, though unsuccessful defence of the island, by creating him a knight of the Bath, and raising him to the Irish peerage, by the title of Baron Blakeney. In 1759, the citizens of Dublin set up a statue of him, executed by Van Nost, in the centre of the Mall. At the time of his death, which took place on the 20th of September, 1761, he was a lieutenantgeneral in the army, and colonel of the
Enniskillen regiment of foot. He was buried, with great funeral pomp, in Westminster abbey.
Lord Blakeney appears to have been truly brave, generous, and estimable. His conduct in private life was somewhat eccentric. His manners grave, but not repulsive; his discourse chiefly turned on historical subjects. He never dined with his subordinates; but frequently joined them in a tavern carousal. His favourite beverage was punch; an immoderate use of which, on one occasion, brought on him an alarming paralytic attack. In dancing, he is said to have been a proficient, and often displayed his skill in a jig or a rigadoon, even when old, and notwithstanding he invariably wore broad-toed German shoes, an inch thick in the sole. He was of the middle stature, but strong and muscular. His face was large, and his walk stiff, except during his transient fits of passion,
when all his gestures were violent and rapid. Of money he was so singularly careless, that he suffered the rents of Mount Blakeney, for seven years, to be received and spent by his elder brother; who, at the end of that period, filed a bill in chancery against the general, for £3,000. Blakeney, on receiving intimation of the proceedings, instead of putting in an answer, waited on his opponent's solicitor, whom he so fully convinced of the injustice of the claim set up by his brother, that the lawyer refused to go on with the suit, nor could the plaintiff meet with any one base enough to prosecute it. The general, subsequently, gave the whole income of his estate to another and more deserving brother, Major Blakeney; contenting himself with his pay, and revenue as lieutenant-governor of Minorca, £6,000 of which he had, however, the misfortune to lose by the failure of a London agent.
GEORGE WADE was born in 1673, and entered the army in 1690. In 1704, he was made adjutant-general, with a brevet of colonel, and became a majorgeneral in 1709. Being afterwards appointed commander-in-chief of the forces in Scotland, he laudably employed the troops over whom he was placed, in cutting roads through the Highlands. He was occupied for ten years in the superintendence of this undertaking, the effects of which were eminently beneficial. Several gentlemen made ways from their own residences to the main road; forty stone bridges were built; and in districts where scarcely any habitations but turfhuts could previously have been found, substantial houses for the accommodation of travellers were erected at short distances from each other. The soldiers, many of whom were husbandmen, taught the Highlanders an improved method of tilling their ground; several useful arts were introduced, to which the peasantry had hitherto been strangers; and the English drovers, who had rarely ventured to attend the
fairs beyond the borders, now penetrated, to purchase cattle, into the heart of the country. Wade, on account of his long and arduous services as a roadmaker, was termed, by the humourists of the day, the greatest highwayman in existence; and a classical wag facetiously proposed that the following line from Horace should be inscribed on his tomb:
Non indecoro pulvere sordidus.
In Chambers' book of Scotland, one of the marshal's roads is described as being sixteen miles in length, with only four turnings; and these, it is remarked, were occasioned, not by eminences, but by the necessity of crossing rivers. "Wade," continues the author, 66 seems to have communicated his own stiff, erect, and formal character, to his roads, but above all to this particular one, which is as straight as his person, as undeviating as his mind, and as indifferent to steep braes, as he himself was to difficulties in the execution of his duty. But, perhaps, of all persons who may be little disposed to lift up their
can scarcely be denied to him for his successful exertions, while commander
hands and bless General Wade, the antiquary will be the least; for the marshal, with that persevering straight-in-chief, to improve the state of the forwardness, for which he was so re- Highlands. Although his conduct in markable, has gone smack through a 1745 has not been quite satisfactorily grand Roman camp at Cudock, and explained, no impeachment appears to obliterated the whole of one of its sides, exist against his loyalty, or military though he might have easily avoided skill; and it is but fair to presume, perthe same, by turning a few yards out of haps, that he had displayed zeal as well his way." as talent while in command, from the great distinction with which he was treated, up to the day of his death, by government. He was accused of having, under the influence of fear, desired permission to remain at Newcastle, instead of going farther into the north; but this charge appears to be groundless, for he proved, on many occasions, that he was not deficient in courage, and particularly while serving, at an early period of his career, in the island of Minorca; where, at the head of the grenadiers, he most gallantly stormed a redoubt.
In 1715, he went into parliament, as member for Hindon; and, in 1722, was returned for Bath, which city he thenceforth represented during the remainder of his life. In 1744, he became commander of the British and Hanoverians attached to the allied army in the Netherlands; but soon resigned his post, apparently in disgust. In the following year, he was placed at the head of a body of troops, destined to act against the rebels in the north, but lingered inactively at Newcastle, as it is said, on account of the inclemency of the season, and the sickness which prevailed among his men, who had recently endured great fatigues in Flanders. His officers appear, however, to have been much annoyed at their enforced indolence, and a paper was dropped in his way, containing the following apt quotation from Shakspeare's King John:
Shall a beardless boy,
Wade, however, still remained at Newcastle, and the sum total of his services, during the campaign, was a loyal proclamation. But his inactivity appears, in the opinion of government, to have been blameless; for, at the time of his death, which took place about three years afterwards, (on the 14th of March, 1748,) he was a privy-counsellor; governor of forts William, Augustus, and George; colonel of the third regiment of dragoon guards; lieutenantgeneral of the ordnance, and a fieldmarshal. A monument, by Roubiliac, was also erected to his memory in Westminster abbey. He was never married, but left a natural daughter.
It would, perhaps, be rash, with so few materials, to form any positive opinion on his character. Applause
Although a notorious gambler, he is said to have been "a worthy man, where women were not concerned." On one occasion, while at a gaming table, having suddenly missed a superb snuff box, which he had just before handed round to the company, he swore that no one should leave the room until it was restored. A search commenced, to which all present submitted, except a shabby-looking officer at his right hand, who, with great humility, had previously solicited the honour of venturing a few shillings against him. "Not all the powers on earth," said this refractory individual, "shall subject me to a search, while I have life to oppose it. I declare, on the honour of a soldier, that I know nothing of the box: follow me into the next room and I will defend that honour, or perish." Wade, in thrusting his hand down for his sword, felt the box in a fob, on his left side, where he had usually deposited it, and immediately expressed his sorrow for having exposed the poor officer to unmerited suspicion. I ask your pardon, sir," said he, " and hope to find it granted, by your breakfasting with me to morrow.' The officer accepted this invitation, and, the next day, thus explained to the marshal his reason for refusing to be searched :-" Being upon half-pay, and friendless, I am obliged to husband my scanty means; I had,
yesterday, very little appetite; and as I could not eat what I had paid for, nor afford to lose it, the leg and wing of a fowl, with a crust of bread, I wrapped up in paper, and put in my pocket; the thought of which being found upon me before all the company, was infinitely more dreaded by me than fighting all the room round." "Enough, enough!"
JOHN DALRYMPLE, EARL OF STAIR.
JOHN, eldest son of the first Earl of Stair, by Elizabeth, heiress of Sir John Dundass, was born on the 20th of July, 1673. He received his education, first at home, and, finally, at the university of Edinburgh, where he was much distinguished by his acquirements. His father had originally destined him for the legal profession, but finding, as he stated, that the young man had too much blunt honesty for a courtier, and would never make his fortune by flattering the folly or administering to the vices of the great, he suffered him to gratify his strong inclination to enter the army; for, said the earl, to a soldier dissimulation is not necessary, and plain honest truth not dangerous.
exclaimed Wade; "let us dine with each other to-morrow; and I will prevent your being subjected to such an unpleasant occurrence for the future." On the following day, they again met, when the marshal, who had amassed an immense fortune, presented him with a captain's commission, and sufficient cash for his outfit.
Having entered the Scotch guards, he proceeded to Flanders, for the purpose of studying fortification and gunnery under Coehorn. He soon acquired the notice and esteem of William, Prince of Orange, whom, after the revolution of 1688, he accompanied to Ireland; and served with great credit, as one of the life-guards, at the battle of the Boyne. In 1692, he was made colonel of a Scotch regiment of foot, with which he fought at the battle of Steenkirk; and, having subsequently behaved with much gallantry and skill, as a volunteer, under Marlborough, he was presented, in 1702, with the colonelcy of the Royal North British dragoons. At the assault on Peer, after maintaining a most perilous post, for many hours, with great composure, he was the first to enter the breach, and killed a grenadier who had personally attacked him. At the sieges of Venloo and Liege, he was among the foremost of the assailants who scaled the walls;
and, at the latter, shot a French officer, who was just in the act of cutting down the Prince of Hesse Cassel, afterwards King of Sweden. He subsequently became aid-de-camp to Marlborough'; and Prince Eugene, on being introduced to him, in 1704, confidently predicted his future greatness.
At the siege of Schellenberg, in the same year, while in the trenches, several balls entered his clothes, but without injuring him; and soon after the battle of Hockstet, at which he had behaved with his customary valour, he was rewarded with the colonelcy of the Scotch Greys. At the battle of Ramillies he commanded a brigade, and during the enemy's retreat, his regiment is said to have committed such dreadful havock among the French, that, "touched with the sight of the slain, he stemmed the fury of the soldiers, and ordered quarter to be given." On his return to England, he became one of the commissioners for effecting the union with Scotland; and on the death of his father, was elected one of the sixteen representative peers of that kingdom in the British parliament. He was a staunch advocate, in the house of lords, of the Duke of Marlborough, whom he accompanied on his visit to Hanover, and there acquired the notice and regard of the elector, afterwards George the First.
In 1708, he acted as aid-de-camp at the battle of Oudenarde, and, in order to prevent further mischief, gallantly exposed himself to the fire of two bodies of the allied troops, who had mistaken each other for enemies. Being despatched with news of the victory to Queen Anne, her majesty honoured