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sent into the North sea for the purpose of preventing the introduction of any supplies from France into Scotland for the use of the pretender, who had arrived there in persou a short time before. The activity which he displayed on this occasion, and the political address with which he, in a great measure, neutralized the support of France so far as it extended to the cause of the house of Stuart, were so extremely satisfactory and grateful to the king, that he created him a baronet, and presented him with a very valuable diamond ring as an especial mark of his own personal esteem for him. In 1717, a repetition of a similar attempt being threatened, under the auspices of that ever-restless prince, Charles XII. of Sweden, Sir George Byng was sent into the Baltic with a strong squadron, and his appearance there put an end to the scheme, for it prevented the Swedish fleet from ever getting out to sea.
In the following year, Spain having manifested the strongest inclination to disturb the public quietude, by equipping a very formidable fleet in the Mediterranean, destined, it was supposed, for an attack upon Naples, Sir George Byng was sent thither with an armament, consisting of twenty ships of the line and six smaller vessels. The British fleet was, on its arrival, hailed by the Neapolitans with a joy almost bordering on frenzy. During the remainder of the current year, and the whole of the ensuing, the admiral continued in the Mediterranean, and, by the succour and assistance of different kinds which he unremittingly afforded to the imperialists, he enabled them to maintain their ground so successfully against the superior army of Spain, that the court of Madrid at length condescended to accede to the quadruple alliance in the month of February, 1719-20, and to the cessation of hostilities in the month of May following.
The eminent services rendered by the admiral could not fail of placing him extremely high in the esteem of his sovereign. The honorary appointment of rear-admiral of Great Britain, with the more pecuniarily advantageous one of treasurer to the navy, were among the first marks of his sovereign's munificence; but they were only the forerunners of his future honours. In the month of January, 1720-21, he was sworn in a member of his majesty's privy-council ; and, in the month of September following, was raised to the peerage, by the titles of Baron Southhill, and Viscount Torrington. In the year 1725, on the revival of the order of the Bath, his lordship was elected and installed as one of the knight-companions ; during the whole of the same reign he possessed not merely the favour, but the personal friendship of his sovereign. On the accession of George II. he was appointed firstlord-commissioner of the admiralty, which high office he continued to hold during the remainder of his life. He died on the 17th of January, 1732–3, being then in the 70th year of his age.
BORN A. D. 1675.- DIED A. D. 1734.
This gentleman was born in Northumberland about the year 1675. For the first thirty years of his life he was scarcely known beyond the precincts of his paternal domain. At length he began to take a share in the politics of the day, and, in 1710, was chosen one of the representatives in parliament of his native county. He was a zealous protestant, but his notions as to the succession to the British crown were of such a kind that the partizans of James Stuart easily succeeded in attaching him to their cause, and his house soon became the great rendezvous for all the papists and non-jurors in the north of England.
On the first adoption of measures for preserving the peace of the country in 1715, a warrant was issued for the apprehension of Forster, who instantly fled in disguise to the house of one Fenwick, at Bywell. Soon afterwards, he, and about twenty other gentlemen, took up arms, and declared for the pretender. They were joined by the earl of Derwentwater, and having marched upon Warkworth, Forster at that place proclaimed James Edward Stuart, king of Britain, by the title of James III. This took place on the 7th of October; on the 10th they proceeded to Morpeth, where the prince was again proclaimed by one Buxton, a clergyman. From Morpeth, Forster's party moved towards Newcastle; but, finding the gates of that place closed against them, they turned towards Hexham. At this latter place they were joined by several of the Scottish partizans of the house of Stuart, and Forster received a commission from the earl of Mar to act as general of the insurgents in the meantime. He soon evinced, however, that he was utterly destitute of the talents requisite for such a charge, at such a crisis. Having marched to Kelso, he lingered there in a state of utter inactivity for seven days; and, on the arrival of the royalist general, Carpenter, in the neighbourhood, he betook himself to a series of the most vacillating and unsoldier-like movements,—now seeming as if he would fall back upon the west of Scotland, now threatening Dumfries, and finally marching upon Kirby-Lonsdale in Westmoreland. Here he might have remained with considerable safety for a time, until reinforcements had gathered around him; but he infatuatedly proceeded towards Preston, where he was soon hemmed in by generals Carpenter and Wills. The result is too well known ; the Highland chiefs would have attempted to cut their way though the enemy's ranks, sword in hand, but their English allies refused to join them, and Forster, in particular, urged a capitulation.
The house of commons expelled Forster from his seat in the month of January, 1716. It had been arranged that he should be tried for high treason on the 14th of April following, but four days previous to the day of trial, Forster made his escape, and got safely to France. He continued in exile for the remainder of his life, and is supposed to have died at Paris in 1734.
Fitzjames, Duke of Berwick.
BORN A. D. 1670.-DIED A. D. 1734.
James FITZJAMES, duke of Berwick, the illegitimate son of James, duke of York, afterwards James II., by Arabella Churchill, sister to Marlborough, was born on the 21st of August, 1670, and educated with his brother, subsequently duke of Albemarle, at Tully, the college of Plessis, and Paris. At the age of fifteen he entered the imperial army, and served a campaign in Hungary, where he obtained the command of a regiment of cuirassiers. On his return to England, although still under eighteen, he was appointed governor of Portsmouth. In the next summer he was made colonel of a regiment of infantry, and, soon after, of Lord Oxford's horse-guards. He surrendered Portsmouth to the prince of Orange by command of his royal father, with whom he embarked at Rochester for France.
In March, 1689, he landed with James at Kinsale, and highly distinguished himself against the troops of William at Donegal, Enniskill. in, and other parts of Ireland; he afterwards accompanied Louis XIV. as a volunteer, to the seat of war in Flanders. During the campaign of 1693, he was made prisoner by his uncle, Brigadier-general Churchill, brother to the duke of Marlborough. In 1695 he married a daughter of the earl of Clanricard; but, having become a widower in 1698, on his return from a tour in Italy, about two years after, he formed a union with a niece of Lord Bulkeley. In 1702 he appears to have commanded part of the French forces in Flanders under the duke of Burgundy and Marshal Boufflers; and, in 1704, he served a campaign in Spain as captain-general of the forces of Philip V., who invested him, for his services, with the order of the Golden fleece. During the next year, being recalled by the king of France, he held the supreme command in Languedoc; and, having laid siege to Nice, then considered one of the strongest places in Europe, compelled it to capitulate. In February, 1706, he was created marshal of France, and, shortly after, resumed the command of the army in Spain, the previous disasters of which he had the honour, in some measure, of retrieving. He obtained, as a mark of gratitude from the Spanish king, the title of duke of Berwick, with the towns of Liric, Xerica, and their dependencies.
In 1708 he was appointed to command the French forces in Dauphiny, but was shortly afterwards removed to the army under the elector of Bavaria, of which, although second in command, he is said to have solely directed the operations. In 1709 he obtained from Louis the dukedom of Warty; and after having, in the interim, added materially to his reputation as a commander, he reduced, in 1714, the garrison and city of Barcelona.
About this time he appears to have devoted much of his attention to the restoration of the Stuarts. By means of Lady Masham, he and his party succeeded, as he states, in procuring the dismissal of the lordtreasurer, Harley; “ but, unfortunately,” he adds,“ before the new ministry could have time to concert their measures together, every hope of success was precluded by the death of the queen, which happened on the 12th of August, 1714, four days after the earl of Oxford's dismission. The elector of Hanover was instantly proclaimed king, and, by his orders, every thing was changed. I was then in Catalonia, at too great a distance to act, or even to give advice ; and had I been at Paris, I should have been much embarrassed, considering the position of affairs. It was not our fault that we had not concerted any arrangements in case of the event which had just happened ; and France, however well-inclined she might be, was not in a condition to risk a new war to support the interests of the young pretender.” The French monarch being either unwilling or unable to afford the Jacobites any assistance, Berwick applied for help to the king of Sweden, who, as he states, had eight thousand men encamped at Gottenburg, and several transports in the harbour, which might have conveyed the troops to Scotland in eight-and-forty hours. The pretender agreed to pay down 50,000 crowns for the costs of embarkation. The court of France encouraged the enterprize. But the Swedish king, according to Berwick, missed a glorious opportunity of advancing his affairs, or rather of relieving himself from oppression, by declining to afford the expected aid, alleging that he wanted the whole of his troops for the defence of his own dominions.
In 1716 the duke of Berwick was appointed to a military command in Guienne, and subsequently distinguished himself, on various occasions, as a general of consummate skill and extraordinary courage, until 1734, when he was killed by a cannon-ball at the siege of Philipsburg. He is described as having been fond of glory; but to have sought it, chiefly in the line of his duty, which no one knew or performed better than himself. In the hurry of the most difficult operations, and the heat of the warmest actions, he is said to have preserved “ that tranquillity and coolness which is the effect of natural intrepidity, and a perfect knowledge of that art, which, in showing us all we have to fear from an enemy, points out, at the same time, what we have to oppose to him.”
James, Earl of Berkeley.
BORN A. D. 1680.-DieD a. D. 1736.
The family of this nobleman has produced many distinguished naval characters. Sir William Berkeley, Charles Lord Berkeley, and John Lord Berkeley of Stratton, were all distinguished names in the naval history of their country. The subject of our present notice was the grandson of George, created first earl of Berkeley by Charles II., in 1679. He early manifested a decided predilection for maritime life and adventure; and having entered the navy, and passed with much credit through all the subordinate ranks, he was on the 2d of April, 1702, promoted to the Sorlings frigate.
Almost immediately after the accession of Queen Anne, he was appointed to the Litchfield, a fourth-rate of fifty guns, with which he made some good captures. In the beginning of the year 1704, he was appointed to the Boyne, of eighty guns, and was soon after sent out under Sir Cloudesley Shovel to reinforce Sir George Rooke's feet in the Straits. He had been previously called up to the house of lords by writ under his honorary title of Lord Dursley. In the engagement off Malaga, the Boyne was fought with great judgment and gallantry. In 1706 Lord Dursley commanded the St George under Sir Cloudesley Shovel, in the Mediterranean ; and the next year he displayed great
gallantry at the siege of Toulon. On his passage homewards the St George narrowly escaped sharing the fate of Sir Cloudesley's vessel, the Association.
On the 26th of January, 1707, this very young officer was made vice-admiral of the blue. This appointment was contrary to the practice at least of the service: it was bis first appointment as a flag-officer, so that his lordship was advanced over the heads of every rear-admiral in the service, as well as of his senior captains. Political influence was no doubt the secret of his lordship's unexampled success; yet his merits as a seaman were so generally acknowledged, that the appointment was submitted to by his brother-officers without much complaint. He hoisted his flag on board the Berwick, and joined Sir George Byng's fleet, immediately after this last appointment. In 1708 he was made vice-admiral of the wbite. In these successive appointments Lord Dursley appears to have conducted himself with great energy and judge ment, especially in the protection of his country's commerce, and clearing the narrow seas of the swarms of privateers that then infested them; but no opportunity offered of coming to any decisive action with the hostile fleets.
By the death of his father, in September, 1710, he became earl of Berkeley, and was immediately constituted lord-lieutenant of Gloucestershire. In April, 1717, he was sworn a member of the privy-council, and on the same day appointed first lord-commissioner of the admiralty, which high station be continued to fill during the remainder of the reign of King George I. On the 13th of March, 1718-19, in anticipation of the rupture with Spain, he was appointed admiral and commanderin-chief of the fleet. The author of Sir J. Leake's life has the following observations on his lordship's conduct :-“ The earl of Berkeley being then vice-admiral of Great Britain—to which honorary station he was appointed on the 21st of March, 1718–19, at a time when Sir John Norris was rear-admiral only—and first lord-commissioner of the admiralty, endeavoured to come as near the lord-high-admiral as possible, both in power and state; by a particular warrant from the crown he hoisted the lord-high-admiral's flag, as it is called—the first time, I believe, it was ever worn in command at sea—and had three captains appointed under him, as a lord-high-admiral,—Littleton, then vice-admiral of the white, being his first captain. This appointment was ren dered the more extraordinary from the circumstance of Sir John Norris, who was a senior flag-officer, being at that time employed in the channel, and honoured with no such distinction.” The earl having hoisted his flag on board the Dorsetshire at Spithead, sailed from St Helens on the 29th of March, with a squadron of seven ships of the line, to join one of the same force under Sir John Norris, which was cruizing between Scilly and the Lizard. Having stretched as far as Cape Clear, he returned back into the British channel on the 4th of April; when coming into Spithead he struck bis flag on the 15th, and repaired to London. After this time he appears to have retired totally from the line of active service, at least as a naval commander, thereby giving occasion to Swift to affirm of him that he was “intolerably lazy." Collins, briefly recapitulating the great variety of civil offices held by this noble lord, gives us the following short account of him, and adds some other heraldic particulars relative to his family:-" He was," says