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acquired should be particularly mentioned Sir William Heathcote, from whom and from whose family he continued ever after to receive constant marks of esteem; and Sir George Beaumont, whose active friendship manifested itself to the hour of his death. He was on terms of great intimacy also with the Rev. Roger Owen, a relation; a man of great wit and talents, who went to the East Indies as chaplain to Admiral Rainier, but unhappily died on the journey overland home. Earl Fitzwilliam and Sir John Leicester were two of Mr. Owen's warmest patrons, and paid him much attention; and the Lord Chancellor, with that goodness of heart which those who best know that noble and learned lord give him the most credit for, showed him great kindness to the last, and even, after his death, continued it to his family.
On his being appointed Principal Portrait Painter to His Royal Highness the Prince Regent, in 1813, the honour of knighthood was offered to Mr. Owen; but he respectfully and judiciously requested permission to decline it.
In 1814, when the Louvre was filled with all the finest works of art in the world, Mr. Owen visited Paris in company with his friends Colonel Ansley and Mr. Callcott, the Royal Academician.
Mr. Owen may be considered as having been at the height of his prosperity in 1817. It appears by a series of annual pocket-books (which contained the only accounts he ever kept) that at that time his practice produced him 30001. a year; so that, had his health continued, he was in a fair way of realizing a large fortune.
In 1818 he removed to Bruton-Street; and it was with something like a presentiment of evil that he did so; for he expressed much regret at leaving his small house at Pimlico, and his painting-rooms in Leicester-Square, where he had worked through all his difficulties, acquired his high reputation, and was rapidly accumulating wealth. Unhappily, his evil-boding proved to be but too well grounded; for the seeds were already sown of that disease which, soon after
occupying his new residence, made its appearance, and eventually confined him to a sick bed, and entirely incapacitated him for pursuing his profession.
He, however, struggled wonderfully against the heavy calamity with which he was threatened ; and in the autumn of 1818, in company with his friend Mr. (afterwards Sir Thomas) Heathcote, visited Cheltenham, where he received so much benefit from the waters as to be enabled, with improved health, to travel into Staffordshire. After his return to London he went on a visit to Sir Thomas Ackland, a gentleman of whose great and persevering kindness he always entertained and expressed the most grateful sense. While at the baronet's house in Devonshire, Mr. Owen painted a whole length of him, intended as a present from the electors of the county to Lady Ackland. This was one of the last of Mr. Owen's finished works.
The next year Mr. Owen went to Bath, and placed himself under the care of Mr. Hicks, a medical man of great skill and reputation; but he returned to town without having derived any benefit from his journey. Soon after he was confined to his bed, or rather pallet; from which he never again rose; and, for five years, the only change he experienced was in being wheeled in the morning from his sleeping room on the first floor to his drawing-room, and back at night. One exception, indeed, was made to this painfully monotonous existence, by a removal to a pleasant part of Chelsea, about six months previous to his decease, in the hope that a change of air and scene might, at least, renovate his spirits ; but the trial was unsuccessful, and at no period of his long illness did he ever suffer so seriously as during this short absence from home, to which he gladly returned in little more than a fortnight.
To the advice and assistance of many medical men of the first eminence Mr. Owen was highly indebted ; and every exertion was made by them to save his valuable life. The late Dr. Baillie, Sir Anthony Carlisle, and Mr. Lynn, frequently visited the suffering invalid; and Dr. Warren was indefatigable in his attentions to the last sad moment.
But, although Mr.Owen was at length reduced to such a state that protracted existence was neither to be expected nor to be desired, the immediate cause of his death was of a sudden and melancholy nature. He had been for some time in the habit of taking an opening draught prescribed by Sir Anthony Carlisle, and he also took every evening thirty drops of a preparation of opium known by the name of “ Battley's Drops.” In consequence, however, of the culpable carelessness of an assistant at a chemist's shop where Mr. Owen's medicines were usually procured, who erroneously labelled two phials, the one containing the opening draught, and the other Battley's Drops, Mr. Owen, very early in the morning of Friday the 11th of February, 1825, swallowed the whole contents of a phial of the latter. He soon became exceedingly lethargic, and- his appearance exciting a suspicion of the mistake that had been committed, medical assistance was instantly sent for. Attempts, which were partially successful, were made to dislodge the laudanum. Mr. Owen, however, who was in a state of stupor, gradually became worse; and after lingering until nearly four o'clock in the afternoon, he expired. An inquest was held the next day before Mr. Higgs and a most respectable jury. Having heard all the evidence on the subject, they returned the following verdict:-" That the deceased, Wm. Owen, Esq. died from taking a large quantity of Battley's Drops, the bottle containing that liquid having been negligently and incautiously labelled by the person who prepared the medicine as an opening draught, such as the said Mr. Owen had been in the habit of taking.”
This melancholy event, by which the arts were deprived of one of their brightest ornaments, and society of one of its most estimable members, created a general sensation of regret in the public mind. By the large circle of Mr. Owen's private friends, to whom he was endeared by his amiable qualities, his loss will long be sincerely deplored. In the ordinary transactions of life he was a man of strict integrity and sound judgment. There was a remarkable manliness in his character; of which the two following incidents in his early life afford
striking proofs. While at school he was stabbed in the thigh with a penknife by the next boy to him on the form; but had the Spartan firmness to conceal the circumstance, in order to save the lad from punishment. On another occasion he plunged into the river Teme, into which his brother, Major Owen, of the Royal Marines, then a very little fellow, had fallen ; and, by prompt exertions, rescued him from a watery grave.
Mr. Owen's funeral, which took place on the 19th of February, was a private one; but it was attended by Sir Thomas Lawrence, the President of the Royal Academy, and by Mr. Owen's old and attached friends, Messrs. Westmacott, Phillips, and Thompson, the Royal Academicians.
The recollections of several of Mr. Owen's professional, and other friends, have been the chief materials of this brief memoir,
SIR THOMAS BERTIE,
VICE-ADMIRAL OF THE RED, KNIGHT BACHELOR OF THE UNITED
KINGDOM, AND KNIGHT COMMANDER OF THE SWEDISH ORDER OF THE SWORD.
This gallant officer, the sixth child, and fourth son, of George Hoar, of London, formerly of Middleton Era, co. Durham, Esq., by Frances, daughter of William Sleigh, of Stocktonupon-Tees, Esq., was born July 3, 1758; and in March 1781, was put upon the books of the William and Mary yacht. He first went to sea at the latter end of 1773, in the Seahorse frigate, commanded by the gallant Captain Farmer, who was afterwards killed in the Quebec, and went with that officer to the East Indies. It was in the Seahorse that Mr. Hoar first met, and became the messmate of the late Lord Nelson and Sir Thomas Trowbridge, with whom he had the enviable fortune of enjoying the strictest intimacy, and an unbroken correspondence, till the respective periods when death deprived the country of their inestimable services.
On the 27th June 1777, Mr. Hoar was removed, by the desire of his patron, the late Lord Mulgrave, from the Seahorse to the Salisbury, bearing the broad pendant of Sir Edward Hughes, with whom he returned to England on the 14th May, in the following year.
On the 21st of the same month, he was promoted to the rank of lieutenant, and immediately appointed to the Monarch of 74 guns, Captain (afterwards Sir Joshua) Rowley.
Whilst belonging to this ship, Lieutenant Hoar introduced the life-buoy into the service. An experiment, much to the