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meddle with the sturdy fighter and thinker till it was quite agreeable to him. The fire in him took a long time to burn down to the socket; his immense vitality carried him with its impetus beyond the life of common men, although the work he has done would have supplied a whole community with tasks. There is much that is wonderful in the old man's death, but nothing whatever “ painful.” Obdormivit: he is “ gone to sleep;' and where he awakes there is no age nor weakness, but crowns for faithful human work, rest for brave and weary spirits, asphodel brighter than the myrtles of the Cannes hills, and air diviner even than the spring-whisper of the breezes upon the Midland Sea.
As for the life of this dead Peer, when we would take it in hand for a survey, it takes us in hand. It abridges the abridger, it absorbs the annotator. It is not a biography, but an encyclopædia, which we are called upon to recall. Other men are famous for some special knowledge—this man had an intellect like the stomach of an ostrich, and swallowed and digested everything Others are made renowned by some special passage or act of history-this strides along with History herself, strong, healthy, dogged, inexhaustible, indomit le, always, for sixty years of
in the van of his time, with a heart of gold, a brain of steel, anda body of adamant. Other lives can be detached for inspection from the edifice of modern times, just as we remove a lichen, or tenderly extract a fern from its crevice; but this vast piece of human energy and splendid prag. matical stuff brings the whole building down upon us if we stir it. This world, with all its whirl and turmoil of duties and businesses, was only just enough to give Henry Brougham his hands full; and, after being hard at work for us all, at every conceivable subject, for exactly seventy years, he died of no other malady in the world but living. It was in 1798 that he published the first advertisement of his capacious powers by a paper, “On Light;" and, after that, what was there he did not take in hand? Climbing from the bar to the Senate, and from the Senate to the Woolsack, he thundered at the Orders in Council, vindicated the honour of a Queen, struck like a Paladin at the face of a hundred social and political evilsbegan the abolition of flogging in the army and of slavery, trumpeted the repeal of Catholic disabilities, helped to reform the trade and Government of India, created national education, fought like a Northern Leonidas for the press and its liberties against the Court Persians, improved prisons, reformed laws, established mechanics' institutes, gave the people cheap and useful books. All this, or much of it, was before 1832. În the Edinburgh Review, which he founded with Jeffrey and Horner, he once wrote all the articles but two, including an able paper on Lithotomy. We have said nothing of his books, of his great speeches, of his juridical reforms, the noblest part, perhaps, of his labours-of his scientific discourses and publications, nor of a thousand and one by-blows of large and liberal work done for dim recreation, as Vulcan used to forge ploughshares when he was not busy on thunderbolts. This man lies dead among the puny, complaining, lazy race of moderns, like Gulliver The Death of Socrates.
on his back amid the folk of Lilliput! You may “sit among the ruins” of him, like Marius at Carthage; you may pillage his diary to build annals and imperial history, just as they used to rob the Coliseum to make modern Rome. Labour a curse? This raw Westmoreland lad, born of quiet people in the Edinburgh Cowgate, accepted it of God like a benediction and a pastime, and laboured 'with pen, and heart, and brain, and tongue,
all the days of his life to help forward the great scheme of the Demiourgos, the Archworkman. Ay! and as the first and last treatises he wrote were upon “ Light,” so his work throughout was done for Light-to let it in upon politics, upon homes, upon poor hearts and souls, upon wretched black slaves, upon prisoners,
upon the whole world, so far as his own lights went, and as he could satisfy his conscience. For that, indeed, was the wise, and the right, and the possible way to abate that Egyptian plague of darkness which is not departed yet.
We owe deep reverence to the memory of a man like this; if, indeed, anybody could be called like” Henry Brougham. He wanted many gifts and some graces. But, now that he is dead, let us all speak of the grand old North countryman with affection, honour, and fervent gratitude. Take his work out of this England which we now inhabit and call “ ours," and what huge gaps and windholes there would be. How many a reform would show his prodigious handiwork by shaking, and what wrongs and oppressions would lift their wicked heads again, at the news that Brougham had never lived and hurled at them his perfervid perorations. He has done marching, the old drum-major of the Army of Liberty: he has done with human life, the stout, untiring friend of humanity! -done with all the fuss and fever of the struggle that was to him only "all in the day's work.” He has done even with that sad stuff which we call “rest,” in this unresting world. Over his villa at Cannes he painted long ago the Latin line, Inveni portum : Spes et Fortuna valete! But the old Peer was a little wrong there: that was only the harbour-bar, not the harbour; now he is quiet "in port,” as true a specimen of manhood as ever carried God's venture of life and life's duty safely and nobly from birth to death.
10.—THE DEATH OF SOCRATES.
PLATO. [Plato, ope of the most distinguished philosophers of antiquity, and founder of the Academic sect, was born B.C. 430. In his youth he applied himself to poetry and painting, both of which he relinquished to become a disciple of Socrates. He died at the age of 78, B.C. 348, and statues and altars were erected to his memory.] Having talked awhile, he arose, and went into an inner room to wash himself: and Crito following him, enjoyn'd us to stay and expect his return. We therefore expected, discoursing among ourselves of the things that had been commemorated by him, and conferring our judgments concerning them. And we frequently spake of the
calamity that seemed to impend on us by his death : concluding, it would certainly come to pass, that as sons deprived of their father, so should we disconsolately spend the remainder of our life. After he had been washed, and his children were brought to him (for he had two sons very young, and a third almost a youth), and his wives also were come; he spake to them before Crito, and gave them his last commands: so he gave order to his wives and children to retire. Then he came back to us. By this time the day had declined almost to the setting of the sun; for he had staid long in the room where he washed himself. Which done, he returned, and sate to repose himself, not speaking much after that. Then came the Minister of the Eleven, the executioner; and addressing himself to him, “I do not believe, Socrates,” said he, “that I shall reprehend that in you, which I am wont to reprehend in others : that they are angry with me, and curse me, when by command of the magistrates (whom I am by my office obliged to obey) I come and give notice to them, that they must now drink the poison; but I know you to be at all times, and chiefly at this, a man both generous, and most mild and civil, and the best of all men that ever came into this place : so that I may be assured that you will not be displeased with me, but (you know the authors) with them rather. Now, therefore (for you know what message I come to bring), farewell, and endeavour to suffer as patiently and calmly as you can, what cannot be avoided :” then breaking forth into tears, he departed. And Socrates converting his eyes upon him, “ And farewell thou too,” saith he: “we will perform all things.” Then turning to us again. “How civil this man is," saith he; "all this time of my imprisonment, he came to me willingly, and sometimes talked with me respectfully, and hath been the best of all that belong to the prison; and now how generously doth he weep for me! But Crito, let us spare him, and let some other bring hither the deadly draught, if it be already bruised, if not, let him bruise it.” Then said Crito, “I think the sun shines upon the tops of the mountains, and is not yet quite gone down; and I have seen some delay the drinking of the poison much longer; nay more, after notice had been given them that they ought to dispatch they have supped, and drank largely too, and talked a good while with their friends; be not then so hasty; you have yet time enough.” Those men of whom you speak, Crito,” saith he, “ did well; for they thought they gained so much more of life; but I will not follow their example, for I conceive I shall gain nothing by deferring my draught till it be later in the night; unless it be to expose myself to be derided, for being desirous, out of too great love of life, to prolong the short remainder of it. But well, get the poison prepared quickly, and do nothing else till that be dispatch'd.” Crito hearing this, beckon'd to a boy that was present; and the boy going forth, and employing himself a while in bruising the poison, returned with him who was to give it, and who brought it ready bruised in a cup; upon whom Socrates casting his eye, “Be it so, good man,” said he; "tell me (for thou art well skill'd in these matters) what is to be done?”
The Death of Socrates.
“ I un
Nothing,” saith he, “but after you have drank, to walk, until a heaviness comes upon your legs and thighs, and then to sit; and this you shall do.” And with that he held forth the cup to Socrates, which he readily receiving, and being perfectly sedate, O Echecrates, without trembling, without change either in the colour or in the air of his face, but with the same aspect, and countenance intent and stern, (as was usual to him,) looking upon the man :
What sayst thou,” saith he, “ may not a man offer some of this liquor in sacrifice ?” We have bruised but so much, Socrates," saith he, “ as we thought would be sufficient.” derstand you,” saith he; but yet it is both lawful and our duty to pray to the gods, that our transmigration from hence to them may be happy and fortunate.” Having spoke these words, and remained silent (for a minute or two) he easily and expeditely drank all that was in the cup. Then many of us endeavored what we could to contain our tears, but when we beheld him drinking the poison, and immediately after, no man was able longer to refrain from weeping; and while I put force upon myself to suppress my tears, they flowed down my cheeks drop after drop. So, covering my face, I wept in secret; deploring not his, but my own hard fortune, in the loss of so great a friend and so near a kinsman. But Crito, no longer able to contend with his grief, and to forbid his tears, rose up before me. And Apollodorus first breaking forth into showers of tears, and then into cries, howlings, and lamentations, left no man from whom he extorted not tears in abundance; Socrates himself only excepted, who said, “What do ye, my friends ? truly I sent away the women for no other reason, but lest they should in this kind offend. For I have heard that we ought to die with good men’s gratulation; but re-compose yourselves, and resume your courage and resolution.” Hearing this, we blushed with shame, and suppressed our tears. But when he had walked awhile, and told us that his thighs had grown heavy and stupid, he lay down upon his back;
for so he who had given him the poison had directed him to do. Who a little time after, returns, and feeling him, looked upon his legs and feet: then pinching his foot vehemently, he asked him if he felt it? and when he said no, he again pinched his legs; and turning to us, told us, that now Socrates was stiff with cold; and touching him, said he would die so soon as the poison came up to his heart; for the parts about his heart were already grown stiff. Then Socrates, putting aside the garment wherewith he was covered; "We owe,” saith he, a cock to Æsculapius ; but do ye pay him, and neglect not to do it.” And these were his last words. “It shall be done,” saith Crito; “but see if
any other command for us." To whom he gave no answer; but soon after fainting, he moved himself often [as in suffering convulsions] Then the servant uncovered him; and his eyes stood wide open; which_Crito perceiving, he closed both his mouth and his eyes. This, Echecrates, was the end of our friend and familiar, a man, as we in truth affirm, of all whom we have by use and experience known, the wisest, and most just.
CHARLES LAMB [The “gentle Elia,” as this delightful essayist has been fondly called, was born in London, 1775, and educated at Christ's Hospital. He held for many years an appointment in the East India Company's offices in Leadenhall-street, retiring on a handsome pension in 1825. He wrote occasionally for periodicals, published a small volume of “Album Verses," a tragedy, not very successful, called “John Woodvil,” and a volume of Tales founded on the plays of Shakspeare. It is by his “Essays by Elia,” originally published in the London Magazine,” that his posthumous reputation is sustained. He died 1834, and is buried in the churchyard at Edmonton, near London.] In comparing modern with ancient manners, we are pleased to compliment ourselves upon the point of gallantry; a certain obsequiousness, or deferential respect, which we are supposed to pay to females as females.
I shall believe that this principle actuates our conduct when I can forget that, in the nineteenth century of the era from which we date our civility, we are but just beginning to leave off the very
fre. quent practice of whipping females in public, in common with the coarsest male offenders.
I shall believe it to be influential, when I can shut my eyes to the fact, that in England women are still occasionally-hanged.
I shall believe in it, when actresses are no longer subject to be hissed off a stage by gentlemen.
I shall believe in it, when Dorimant hands a fishwife across the kennel; or assists the apple-woman to pick up her wandering fruit, which some unlucky dray has just dissipated.
I shall believe in it, when the Dorimants in humbler life, who would be thought in their way notable adepts in this refinement, shall act upon it in places where they are not known, or think themselves not observed-when I shall see the traveller for some rich tradesman part with his admired box-coat, to spread it over the defenceless shoulders of the poor woman, who is passing to her parish on the roof of the same stage-coach with him, drenched in the rain —when I shall no longer see a woman standing up in the pit of a London theatre, till she is sick and faint with the exertion, with men about her seated at their ease, and jeering at her distress; till one, that seems to have more manners or conscience than the rest, significantly declares “she should be welcome to his seat, if she were a little younger and handsomer.” Place this dapper warehouseman, or that rider, in a circle of their own female acquaintance, and you shall confess you have not seen a politer-bred man in Lothbury.
Lastly, I shall begin to believe that there is some such principle influencing our conduct, when more than one-half of the drudgery and coarse servitude of the world shall cease to be performed by
Until that day comes, I shall never believe this boasted point to be anything more than a conventional fiction; a pageant got up