Miscellanies, Literary & Historical - Vol. 1

By Lord Rosebery | Go to book overview

VII
WILLIAM WINDHAM1

WILLIAM WINDHAM, though by no means flawless, was one of the great gentlemen of our history. Had he lived in the great days of Elizabeth, he would have been one of the heroes of her reign; indeed he almost seemed out of place in the times of George III. As a country gentleman no doubt he was not the equal of his friend and neighbour Coke, whom genius and fortune made the greatest of benefactors to agriculture; but Coke as a politician was narrow and fanatical. And with devotion to rural life and manly sport Windham combined much more. He was a statesman, an orator, a mathematician, a scholar, and the most fascinating talker of his day. He was brilliant in that galaxy which comprised Johnson and Burke, Pitt, Fox, and Sheridan, though their memory will survive his. For, by the irony of events, he is now best remembered as the successful advocate of bull-baiting. So that it is worth while to revive his real character and repute.

As a statesman he was proud of his inde-

____________________
1
An Introduction contributed to the Windham Papers, London, 1913.

-145-

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Miscellanies, Literary & Historical - Vol. 1
Table of contents

Table of contents

  • Title Page iii
  • Note v
  • Contents vii
  • I - Appreciations 1
  • I - Robert Burns 3
  • II - Dr. Johnson 31
  • III - Thackeray 59
  • IV - Cromwell 77
  • V - Frederick the Great 101
  • VI - Burke 130
  • VII - William Windham 145
  • VIII - The Coming of Bonaparte 160
  • IX - Sir Robert Peel 185
  • X - Dr:Chalmers 238
  • XI - Mr. Gladstone 255
  • XII - Lord Salisbury 264
  • XIII - Lord Randolph Churchill 275
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