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UNIVERSITY MAGAZIN E.
THE DEATH OF THE PRINCE CONSORT. We have this month to record the sudden death of the Prince Consort, in the prime of manhood. Active, temperate, and healthy, no man bid fairer for length of days. The public have received the startling intelligence with consternation. Upon our beloved Queen the blow has descended with an impetus unbroken by delay and aggravated by recent sorrows. Over the whole Royal Family it has burst, like one of those tornados which, without warning or mercy, in a single hour, overcast a serene sky, and desolate the earth.
All that is supposed to make life most enjoyable, in the highest as well as in the more vulgar sense, was largely mingled in the rich chalice of his fortune. First of all blessings, he had a happy and well-ordered home—the devoted attachment of his Royal Consort-herself a noble example to the wives and mothers of England and the love and duty of the fine and intelligent family she bore him-a home refined by elegant accomplishments, beautified by many virtues, and consecrated and made delightful by the blessed influence of religion. With these he possessed the most illustrious social position next to the Throne, and a political influence, though not strictly recognized, necessarily of the highest and most comprehensive character. And lastly, he was surrounded with those luxuries and splendours which belong to kings, and the wealth after which the world is toiling, a gift not so precious in its prerogatives as in its exemptions. His life passed by unclouded and unchilled by the passing of so much as one of those dismal cares which chequer the common lot of mankind with fears and miseries.
Such a lot approached, perhaps, as near to perfect happiness as is compatible with the condition of humanity. It had, however, this alloy :--the highest social and heraldic position was indeed conceded; but the Constitution denied a corresponding political status. To share merely in the ceremonial diguities of a court, standing always so near, and, in the relation of husband, to the impersonation of the highest political power in the empire, and yet to Possess none himself-conscious at the same time of the knowledge and the capacity to exercise it, was, it is idle to deny, a mortifying position. This, Indeed, was compensated, though not publicly, by the intimate confidence of bis Royal Consort. The letter of the Constitution, it is true, excluded him from the potential discussion of political affairs; but when the question came at length to be raised in the public journals, the people of England refused to sanction the unnatural, if not impossible restraints, which a literal construc
VOL. LIX. --NO. CCCXLIX.