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the brave Admiral Benbow: he fought like any English Admiral of our own days; but his officers treated him most cruelly, and behaved quite in a different manner from what any of our navy captains would do now.
Admiral Benbow was placed near the West Indies with a fleet of ten ships, to annoy the enemy's trade, and he was informed that the French Admiral was in those seas, with a force equal to his own. He presently found the enemy's ships, and immediately formed the line of battle, and began the attack, but he soon saw that he was left almost alone to bear the whole fire of the enemy. The Admiral, however, kept fighting on till night, and he determined to go on again the next morning. In the morning, he found, to his great dismay, that all his ships, but one, had fallen back. Still, however,
this brave Admiral, with only one ship to assist him, continued to pursue and engage the enemy, for four days. The last day's battle was more furious than the rest, and in this, his leg was. shot off by a cannon ball. He then ordered that they should place him in a cradle on the quarterdeck, and he continued to give his orders till his ship was so thoroughly disabled, that he could go on no longer.
When one of his lieutenants, during the fight, expressed his sorrow for the loss of the Admiral's leg. 66 Yes,” said Benbow, “ I am sorry for it too, but I had rather have lost both my legs, than have seen the dishonour of this day. But, do
you hear! if another shot should take me off, behave like men, and fight it out.” The Admiral soon died of his wounds: and the officers who had deserted him, you may be sure, were severely punished. Two of them were shot, by the sentence of a court-martial at Plymouth.
I must not forget to tell you too, that it was in Queen Anne's reign that Gibraltar was taken. This
is a town, as you may see by your map, at the very bottom (or south) of Spain. It was taken from the Spaniards by.. Sir George Rooke; you may be sure that this was not done without severe fighting, as the place is defended, perhaps, more strongly than any place in the world. The English, however, took it, and they have kept it ever since ; and, as you see that it is just at the straits, or narrow sea, by which the Mediterranean is entered, it gives us great power and command in that sea.
There are so many things to write about in this reign, thạt it is.impossible to give you an account of them all in my short letters; and, if I were to attempt to describe all the battles that were fought, and all the politics of the day, and the changes of ministers, and the Whigs and the Tories, and such sort of things, I should make but a poor history of it, and such matters would not be very interesting to you. I must not, however, forget to tell you that it was in this reign that the union of Scotland and England was brought about. You know that James the First was King of Scotland, when the crown of England came to him. He was lawful heir - to both kingdoms: and, since that time, the two kingdoms were governed by the same King; but still they were separate kingdoms, and had different parliaments. It was, however, thought likely to be an advantage to them both to have them united under one government; and this, after much de- .. bating and delay, was at last agreed upon. The greater part of the nation seemed to approve of the measure, and it seems to have answered their expectations, and to have been a great benefit to both countries.
In Queen Anne's reign, an act was passed for building fifty new churches in and about London. This was an excellent measure, for London kept increasing in size, and therefore there was not sufficient church room to hold the people. It was.
therefore highly necessary to remedy this ; if there. is not church room for the people, they cannot go; and we may always observe, that when people neglect religious worship, they commonly get into forgetfulness of all religious duty, and then into the practice of any crime to which they may be tempted. Church room should be provided for all, the poor as well as the rich, that they may attend if they please. If they then neglect the duty of religious worship, or rather I should say, give up so great a privilege, then they are themselves to answer for it, the fault will be their own, and the loss too.
A few only of these churches were, however, then built; and there has been a general complaint of want of church room in the neighbourhood of London ever since; and it has been particularly felt in our own day, since so much has been added to the size of London within the last few years. Happily, however, many new churches have been lately built, and many more are being built, so that, in a little while, we will hope that nobody. need stay from church for want of room: what a happiness it would be if no one staid away for want of desire to worship God, to hear his word, and to learn his will !
I must, however, bring my letter to a conclusion. The poor Queen, notwithstanding all the victories, and the prosperity of the nation, was harassed and teazed to death by the quarrels and jealousies and changes of her ministers: first one set of men were in favour, then another; then she found that those whom she thought her best friends, were accused of laying plots and snares to oppose her wishes; and during all these perplexities, her health began to give way, and she had not strength to bear the fatigues and difficulties of state affairs. She sunk into a sort of insensible and indifferent state of mind, and all that the physicians could do seemed to be of very little use.
« On the 13th of July, 1714, she seemed somewhat relieved by medicines, she rose from her bed about 8 o'clock, and walked a little. After some time, casting her eyes on a clock that stood in her chamber, she continued to gaze at it for some minutes. One of the ladies in waiting asked her what she saw there more than usual, to which the Queen only answered by turning her eyes upon her with a dying look. She was presently afterwards seized with a fit of apoplexy, from which, however, she was soon recovered by the assistance of Dr. Mead. She continued all night in a state of stupefaction. She gave some signs of life between twelve and one the next day ; but expired the following morning, in the forty-ninth year of her age, after a reign of twelve years."
Queen Anne was married to Prince George of Denmark, but we do not consider her husband as king of England, because the crown came to Queen Anne in her own right, and not in her husband's; and therefore she became reigning Queen; her husband having nothing to do with the nation, in the light of a King
Anne died without children; and therefore it became necessary to enquire who should be King after her. This had already made a good deal of dispute during her reign; some people wished for the male descendents of James the Second; but those who were against the Papists, chose rather to look to another branch of the royal family who were Protestants; and these last were for the Elector of Hanover.
The first sort were called Jacobites, which means followers of James *, and the others were called Hanoverians, because they were in favour of the house of Hanover. There were many quarrels between these two parties, of which we need not . speak just now. The nation, however, for the most part were for the Elector of Hanover, very wisely choosing to have a Protestant King. This King was George the First, about whom I intend to write to you in my next letter.
* Jacob is the old name of James: