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SIR WILLIAM TEMPLE has left a name of some distinction in our literature; it is, however, as a diplomatist and statesman that he is most entitled to remembrance. Strictly speaking, his public career extends only over about half the space that intervened between the Restoration and the Revolution; but during that memorable period he was, although not perhaps so conspicuous a figure as some others, yet one of the most active and influential personages of our political drama. He was certainly also one of the most honest. His



straightforwardness, indeed, upon all occasions, even although it may not have been of a very adventurous character, and although it may have been accompanied by, and may indeed have sprung in part from, a certain vanity or over-consciousness of his own merits and cleverness, was such as would have done honour to a time very different from that age of general duplicity and want of principle among public men, and would have made him remarkable among the diplomatists of any age or country.

The Temples, according to the common genealogies, derived their descent from the Saxon Leofric, Earl of Mercia, and his wife the famous Godiva. They were certainly one of the oldest families among our gentry, having been established at their manor of Temple, or Temple Hall, near Wellesborough, in Leicestershire, since the twelfth or thirteenth century. One of them, Peter Temple, a second son, removed, in the reign of Elizabeth, to Stow, in Buckinghamshire; and while from his eldest son, John, whose son Thomas was made a baronet in 1611, have sprung the Barons and Viscounts Cobham, the Earls Temple, the Dukes of Buckingham and Chandos, the Lords Nugent, the Lords Lyttelton, &c., his youngest, Anthony, became the progenitor of Sir William Temple, as well as of the Viscounts Palmerston. Anthony's son William, after having been secretary first to Sir Philip Sidney, and after his death to the unfortunate Earl of Essex, retired to Ireland, was knighted, and became a master in the Irish Court of Chancery, provost of Trinity College, Dublin, and a representative, some accounts say of the university, some of the city, in parliament. His son John, also knighted, became Master of the Rolls and a privy councillor in Ireland, and wrote a History of the Rebellion in 1641. He married Mary, daughter of John Hammond, of Chertsey, in Surrey, and sister of Dr. Henry Hammond, the eminent divine; and by her he had three sons and a daughter, of whom William, the eldest son, whose life we are about to relate, was born at Blackfriars, in London, in the year 1628. John, the second son, who became,

after the Restoration, solicitor and attorney general for Ireland, and also speaker of the Irish House of Commons, was the father of the first and the great greatgrandfather of the present Viscount Palmerston.

Sir John Temple, when the contest first broke out between the king and the parliament, had sided with the latter, and was dismissed from his office of Master of the Rolls, and imprisoned, in 1643, for opposing certain proceedings of the Duke of Ormond, then the Irish lordlieutenant. The following year he obtained his liberty by an exchange of prisoners, and, having been returned to the English parliament as member for Chichester, he sat till he was turned out by Colonel Pride, with the rest of his party, in 1648. If not a professor of the religious opinions of the Presbyterians, he had generally voted with that section of the House, which comprised most of the original opponents of the king, to the exclusion of those whose object was not to bring Charles to terms, but to destroy the monarchy. After living, however, in retirement in London for about five years, he gave in his adhesion to the government of the Protector, and in 1653 he was permitted to resume his office in Ireland, in which he was continued after the Restoration, and in the possession of which he died at the age of seventy-seven, in 1677.

The Life of Sir William Temple has lately been written in ample detail, and with a careful examination of all the known sources of information, both printed and manuscript, which has brought to light many new facts, by the Right Hon. Thomas Peregrine Courtenay. In what follows we shall avail ourselves freely of the materials collected in Mr. Courtenay's work, which appeared in 2 vols. 8vo. in 1836.

Temple's early education is said to have been superintended by his learned uncle, Dr. Hammond, who was rector of Penshurst in Kent. Temple therefore must be supposed to have spent his first years there, in the neighbourhood of the seat of the Sidneys, the old patrons of his family. The common make him to have gone to school at Penshurst.




Hammond, who was a royalist of a much deeper dye than his brother-in-law, was driven out of his living by the parliament, in the summer of 1643, young Temple, who, it would appear, had been left with his uncle when his father and mother removed to Ireland, was sent to a grammar-school at Bishop's Stortford, in Hertfordshire. "Here," says Mr. Courtenay, "he learned all the Latin and Greek he ever knew." But surely it cannot be supposed that his uncle would allow him to grow up to the age of fifteen without knowing his rudiments. "His Latin," Mr. Courtenay adds, "he retained; but he often regretted the loss of his Greek." We do not understand what Mr. Courtenay means by telling us that an interval of two years which he now spent before going to college was occasioned by the unsettled state of affairs." If he knew nothing of either Greek or Latin, when he went to Stortford, the two years that he spent there are sufficiently explained. Such an interval for preparation would have been quite necessary even in the most tranquil times. At the age of seventeen, however, which would be in the year 1645, he was placed at Emanuel College, Cambridge, where his tutor was Dr. Ralph Cudworth, the celebrated author of the Intellectual System of the Universe.' "At this time," continues Mr. Courtenay, on the authority of a manuscript Life of Temple by his sister Lady Giffard, "the fortunes of Sir John Temple were very low; but he chose to spare in any thing rather than what might tend to the advantage of his children in their breeding and education. But Temple's education in its scholastic sense did not proceed successfully. His learned tutor endeavoured in vain to initiate him in the study of logic and philosophy; he gave himself up to tnn is, and entertainments which agreed better with his age and lively humour, and quitted Cambridge after two years, without any degree or academic honours; and had it been possible, he was accustomed to say, he should have lost all that he had previously learned." He left he university probably in the latter end of the year 1647. He was then sent by his father to spend some time in

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