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notice with rude contempt, and swallowed his own medicine, which, in July 1710, brought him to the grave. He was buried at Gartham.
Many years afterwards, Ducket communicated to Oldmixon the historian, an account pretended to have been received from Smith, that Clarendon's History was, in its publication, corrupted by Aldrich, Smalridge, and Atterbury; and that Smith was employed to forge and insert the alterations.
This story was published triumphantly by Oldmixon, and may be supposed to have been eagerly received : but its progress was soon checked; for finding its way into the Journal of Trevoux, it fell under the eye of Atterbury then an exile in France, who immediately denied the charge, with this remarkable particular, that he never in his whole life had once spoken to Smith; his company being, as must be inferred, not accepted by those who attended to their characters.
The charge was afterwards very diligently refuted by Dr. Burton of Eaton, a man eminent for literature, and, though not of the same party with Aldrich and Atterbury, too ftudious of truth to leave them burthened with a false charge. The testimonies which he has collected have convinced mankind that either Smith or Ducket were guilty of wilful and malicious falsehood.
This controversy brought into view those parts of Smith's life, which with more honour to his naine · might have been concealed.
Of Smith I can yet say a little more. He was a man of such estimation among his companions, that the casual censures or praises which he dropped in con
versation were considered like those of Scaliger, as worthy of preservation.
He had great readiness and exactness of criticism, 62 and by a cursory glance over a new composition would exactly tell all its faults and beauties.
He was remarkable for the power of reading with great rapidity, and of retaining with great fidelity what he so easily collected.
He therefore always knew what the present question required; and, when his friends expressed their wonder at his acquisitions, made in a state of apparent negligence and drunkenness, he never discovered his hours of reading or method of study, but involved himself in affected silence, and fed his own vanity with their admiration and conjectures.
One practice he had, which was easily observed: if any thought or image was presented to his mind, that he could use or improve, he did not suffer it to be lost; but, amidst the jollity of a tavern, or in the warmth of conversation, very diligently committed it to paper.
Thus it was that he had gathered two quires of hints for his new tragedy; of which Rowe, when they were put into his hands, could make, as he says, very little use, but which the collector considered as a valuable stock of materials.
When he came to London, his way of life connected him with the licentious and diffolụte; and he affected the airs and gaiety of a man of pleasure; but his dress was always deficient *: scholastick cloudiness still hung
The late Dr. Jortin once told ine that Smith, being desirous to make one at a masquerade, contrived thus to save the hire of a dress: 10 a grey stuff-damalk man's night-gown he stuck as many ballads printed on flips as would cover it, and in this whimsical garb mixed
about him; and his merriment was sure to produce the scorn of his companions.
With all his carelessness, and all his vices, he was one of the murmurers at Fortune; and wondered why he was suffered to be poor, when Addison was caressed and preferred: nor would a very little have contented him; for he estimated his wants at lix hundred pounds a year.
In his course of reading it was particular, that he had diligently perused, and accurately remembered, the old romances of knight errantry.
He had a high opinion of his own merit, and was something contemptuous in his treatment of those whom he considered as not qualified to oppose or contradict him. He had many frailties; yet it cannot but be supposed that he had great merit, who could obtain to the same play a prologue from Addison, and an epilogue from Prior; and who could have at once the patronage of Halifax, and the praise of Oldisworth.
For the power of communicating these minute memorials, I am indebted to my conversation with Gilbert Walıfley, late register of the ecclefiaftical court of Lichfield, who was acquainted both with Smith and Ducket; and declared, that, if the tale concerning Clarendon were forged, he should suspect Ducket of the falsehood; for Rag was a man of great veracity.
Of Gilbert Walmfley, thus presented to my mind, let me indulge myself in the remembrance. I knew with the company, who followed him up and down, reading and linging the songs that ituck to his back, till one of them had the boloneis to pull one of them ofi, which not being relented by Smith, as not being felt, the example was followed by others, and he in a fort rime was deplumed, and obliged to retreat and forego the pleasurts of the entertainment. 3
him very early; he was one of the first friends that
73 boy; yet he never received my notions with contempt. He was a Whig, with all the virulence and malevolence of his party; yet difference of opinion did not keep us apart. I honoured him, and he endured me,
He had mingled with the gay world, without exemption from its vices or its follies, but had never neglected the cultivation of his mind; his belief of Revelation was unshaken; his learning preserved his principles; he grew first regular, and then pious,
His studies had been so various, that I am not able to name a man of equal knowledge. His acquaintance with books was great; and what he did not immediately know he could at least tell where to find. Such was his amplitude of learning, and such his copiousness of communication, that it may be doubted whether a day now passes in which I have not some advantage from his friendship.
At this man's table I enjoyed many chearful and instructive hours, with companions such as are not often found; with one who has lengthened, and one who has gladdened life; with Dr. James, whose skill in physick will be long remembered; and with David Garrick, whom I hoped to have gratified with this character of our common friend: but what are the hopes of man! I am disappointed by that stroke of death, which has eclipsed the gaiety of nations, and impoverished the publick stock of harmless pleasure.
In the Library at Oxford is the following ludicrous Analysis of Pacockius:
EX AUTOGRAPH O.
[Sent by the Author to Mr. Urry.]
OPUSCULUM hoc, Halberdarie ampliffime, in lucem proferre hactenus distuli, judicii tui acumen subveritus magis quam bipennis. Tandem aliquando Oden hanc ad te mitto sublimem, teneram, flebilem, suavem, qualem demum divinus (li Musis vacaret) scripsiffet Gastrellus: adeo scilicet sublimem ut inter legendum dormire, adeo flebilem ut ridere velis. Cujus elegantiain ut melius infpicias, versuum ordinem & materiam breviter referam. I mus verfus de duobus præliis decantatis, 2 ** & 3' de Lotharingio, cuniculis subterraneis, faxis, ponto, hoftibus, & Asia. 4* & 5de catenis, fubdibus, uncis, draconibus, tigribus & crocodilis. 6", 7", 3", 9", de Gomorrha, de
g Babylone, Babele, & quodam duni suæ peregrino. 10", aliquid de quodam Pocockio. 1", 12", de
11 Syriâ, Solymâ. 13", 14", de Hvità, & quercu, & de juvene quodamn valde fene. 15", 16", de Ærnâ & quomodo Etna Pocockio fit vaide fimilis. 17", 18", de tubâ, astro, umbrâ, flammis, rotis, Pocockio non neglecto. Cætera de Christianis, Ortomanis, BabyJoniis, Arabibus, & graviilimà agroruin melancholiâ; de Cæsare Flacco *, Nestore, & miferando juvenis cujusdam florentiifimi fato, anno ætatis fuæ centesimo præmaturè abrepti. Que omnia cum accuratè ex
* Pro Flacco, animo paulo attentiore, scripfiffem Marone.