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in 8vo: with a dedication to the above Bishop of Winchester: and a preface, containing the motives for writing them: this preface is followed by a copy of verses, by his intimate friend and adopted son, Charles Cotton, of Beresford in Staffordshire, Esq., the author of the second part of the " Complete Angler," and by the letter from Bishop King, so often referred to in the course of this life.
The "Complete Angler " having, in the space of twenty-three years, gone through four editions,-Walton in the year 1666, and in the eighty-third of his age, was preparing a fifth, with additions, for the press; when Mr. Cotton wrote his second part. It seems Mr. Cotton submitted the manuscript to Walton's perusal, who returned it with his approbation, and a few marginal strictures: and in that year they were published together. Mr. Cotton's book had the title of the "Complete Angler; being Instructions how to angle for a Trout or Grayling in a clear Stream; Part ii.," and it has ever since been received as a second part of Walton's book. In the title-page is a cypher composed of the initial letters of both their names; which cypher, Mr. Cotton tells us, he had caused to be cut in stone, and set up over a fishing-house that he had erected near his dwelling on the bank of the little river, Dove, which divides the counties of Stafford and Derby.
Mr. Cotton's book is a judicious supplement to Walton's; for Walton, though he was so expert an angler, knew but little of fly-fishing; and indeed acknowledges that the greater part of what he has said on that subject was communicated to him by Mr. Thomas Barker, and not the result of his own experience. This Mr. Barker was a good-humoured gossiping old man, and seems to have been a cook; for he says, "he had been admitted into the most ambassadors' kitchens, that had come to England for forty years, and drest fish for them;" for which, he says, was duly paid by the lord protector." He spent a great deal of .time, and, it seems, money too, in fishing; and in the latter part of his life, dwelt in an almshouse near the Gatehouse, Westminster. In 1651, two years before the first publication of Walton's work, he published a book in 12mo. called the "Art of Angling," to which he affixed his name:1 he published, in
1 To this, Walton, in his first edition, page 108, thus acknowledges his obligations: "I will tell you freely, I find Mr. Thomas Barker a gentleman that has spent much time and money in angling, deal so judiciously and freely in a little book of his of angling, and especially of making and angling with a fly for a trout, that I will give you his very directions without much variation, which shall follow." In his fifth edition, he continues to mention the use which be had made of Barker's book, but in different
1653, a second edition, in 4to. under the same title, but without his name and in 1659 he published the third edition of it, under the enlarged title of "Barker's Delight, or the Art of Angling." And, for that singular vein of humour that runs through it, is a most diverting book.
And of Cotton it must be said, that living in a country where fly-fishing was, and is, almost the only practice, he had not only the means of acquiring, but actually possessed more skill in the art, as also in the method of making flies, than most men of his time.
His book is, in fact, a continuation of Walton's, not only as it teaches at large that branch of the art of angling which Walton had but slightly treated on, but as it takes up Venator, Walton's piscatory disciple, just where his master had left him; and this connexion between the two parts will be clearly seen, when it is remarked that the traveller whom Cotton invites to his house, and so hospitably entertains, and also instructs in the art of fly-fishing-I say this traveller-and Venator, the pupil of Walton, prove to be one and the same person.
In this second part there is great spirit in the dialogue; and the same conversable, communicative temper which so eminently distinguishes the first.
A book which had been published by Col. Robert Venables, some years before (1662), called the "Experienced Angler, or Angling Improved," which has its merit, was also now reprinted; and the booksellers prefixed to it a general title of the "Universal Angler," under which they sometimes sold the three, bound together: but the book is written in a manner very different from that of the "Complete Angler." It has a preface signed I. W. undoubtedly of Walton's writing.
And here it may not be amiss to remark, that between the two parts of the "Complete Angler," there is an obvious difference; the latter [part] though it abounds in descriptions of a wild and romantic country, and exemplifies the intercourses of hospitable. urbanity, is of a didactic form, and contains in it more of instruction in the art it professes to teach, than of moral reflection : whereas the former, besides the pastoral simplicity that distinguishes it, is replete with sentiments that edify-and precepts that recommend, in the most persuasive manner, the practice of religion, and the exercise of patience, humility, and contentedness, and other moral virtues. In this view of it, the book might be said to be the only one of the kind, but that I find somewhat
words: "I shall give some other directions for fly-fishing, such as are given by Mr. Thomas Barker, a gentleman that hath spent much time in fishing, but I shall do it with a little variation."-H.
like an imitation of it extant in a tract entitled "Angling improved to Spiritual Uses," part of an 8vo. volume written by the Hon. Robert Boyle, an angler, as himself confesses, and published in 1665, with this title, "Occasional Reflections upon several Subjects; whereto is premised a Discourse about such kind of Thoughts."
Great names are entitled to great respect. The character of Mr. Boyle, as a devout Christian and deep philosopher, is deservedly in high estimation; and a comparison between his reflections and those of Walton, might seem an invidious labour -but see the irresistible impulse of wit! the book here referred to was written in the very younger years of the author; and Swift, who had but little learning himself, and was better skilled in party politics than in mathematics or physics, respected no man for his proficiency in either, and accordingly has not spared to turn the whole of it into ridicule.1
Walton was now in his eighty-third year, an age which, to use his own words, "might have procured him a writ of ease, and secured him from all further trouble in that kind;" when he undertook to write the "Life of Doctor Robert Sanderson, Bishop of Lincoln:" which was published-together with several of the Bishop's pieces, and a sermon of Hooker's-in 8vo. 1677.2
And, since little has been said of the subjects of these several lives, it may not be amiss just to mention what kind of men they were whom Walton, and indeed mankind in general, thought so well worthy to be signalised by him.
DOCTOR JOHN DONNE was born in London about the year 1573. At the age of eleven he was sent to Oxford; thence he was transplanted to Cambridge; where he applied himself very assiduously to the study of divinity. At seventeen he was admitted to Lincoln's-inn; but not having determined what
1 See his "Meditation on a Broomstick."
2 The following curious particular, relating to King Charles the First, is mentioned in this "Life of Sanderson;" which, as none of our historians have taken notice of it, is here given in Walton's own words: "And let me here take occasion to tell the reader this truth, not commonly known, that in one of these conferences this conscientious king told Dr. Sanderson, or one of them that then waited with him, that the remembrance of two errors did much afflict him; which were, his assent to the Earl of Strafford's death, and the abolishing episcopacy in Scotland: and that, if God ever restored him to be in a peaceable possession of his crown, he would demonstrate his repentance by a publick confession, and a voluntary penance (I think barefoot) from the Tower of London, or Whitehall, to St. Paul's church, and desire the people to intercede with God for his pardon. I am sure one of them told it me, lives still, and will witness it."-Life of Sanderson.-H.
profession to follow, and being besides not thoroughly settled in his notions of religion, he made himself master of the Romish controversy, and became deeply skilled in the civil and canon law. He was one of the many young gentlemen who attended the Earl of Essex on the Cales expedition; at his return from which he became secretary to Lord Chancellor Ellesmere. Being very young, he was betrayed into some irregularities, the reflection on which gave him frequent uneasiness during the whole of his future life: but a violent passion which he entertained for a beautiful young woman, a niece of Lady Ellesmere, cured him of these, though it was for a time the ruin of his fortunes; for he privately married her, and by so imprudent a conduct brought on himself and his wife the most pungent affliction that two young persons could possibly experience; he being, upon the representation of Sir George Moor, the lady's father, dismissed from his attendance on the Lord Chancellor, and in consequence thereof involved in extreme distress and poverty;1 in which he continued till about 1614, when having been persuaded to enter into holy orders, he was chosen preacher to the honourable society of Lincoln's-inn, and soon after appointed a King's chaplain. In his station of chaplain he drew on him the eyes of the King, who, with marks of favour, preferred him to the deanery of St. Paul's; and shortly after, on the presentation of his friend, the Earl of Dorset, he was inducted into the vicarage of St. Dunstan's in the West. But the misfortunes attending his marriage had not only broken his spirit, but so impaired his constitution, that he fell into a lingering consumption, of which he died in 1631. Besides a great number of Sermons, he left a volume of "Poems"-first published, and as there is reason to suppose, by Walton himself, in 1635—among which are six most spirited satires, several whereof Pope has modernised. Walton compares him to St. Austin, as having, like him, been converted to a life of piety and holiness.
SIR HENRY WOTTON was born 1568. After he had finished his studies at Oxford, he resided in France, Germany, and Italy;
1 In a letter of his to an intimate friend, is the following most affecting passage: "There is not one person, but myself, well of my family: I have already lost half a child; and with that mischance of hers, my wife is fallen into such a discomposure, as would afflict her too extremely, but that the sickness of all her other children stupifies her; of one of which, in good faith, I have not much hope: and these meet with a fortune so ill provided, for physick, and such relief, that if God should ease us with burials, I know not how to perform even that. But I flatter myself with this hope, that I am dying too; for I cannot waste faster than by such griefs." "Life of Donne," in the "Collection of Lives," edit. 1670, page 29.-H.
and at his return attended the Earl of Essex. He was employed by King James the First in several foreign negotiations, and went ambassador to Venice. Towards the end of his life, he was made provost of Eton College, a dignity well suited to a mind like his, that had withdrawn itself from the world for the purpose of religious contemplation. He was skilled in painting, sculpture, music, architecture, medals, chemistry, and languages. In the arts of negotiation he had few equals; and in the propensities and attainments of a well-bred gentleman, no superior. To which character it may be added, that he possessed a rich vein of poetry; which he occasionally exercised in compositions of the descriptive and elegiac kind. There is extant, of his writing, the volume of "Remains " heretofore mentioned; collected and published, as the dedication tells us, by Walton himself; containing among other valuable tracts, his "Elements of Architecture." He was a lover of angling, and such a proficient in the art, that, as he once told Walton, he intended to write a discourse on it: but his death, in 1639, prevented him. His reasons for the choice of this recreation were, that "after tedious study, it was a rest to his mind, a chearer of his spirits, a diverter of sadness, a calmer of unquiet thoughts, a moderator of passions, a procurer of contentedness; and begat habits of peace and patience."
HOOKER, one of the greatest of English divines, is sufficiently known and celebrated as a learned, able and judicious writer, and defender of our church, in his "Treatise of the Laws of Ecclesiastical Polity." The occasion of this immortal work was as follows:-In or about the year 1570 were published two small tracts, severally entitled, "A First and Second Admonition to the Parliament," containing, under the form of a remonstrance, a most virulent invective against the establishment and discipline of the Church of England. These were answered by Dr. Whitgift, afterwards Archbishop of Canterbury, and defended by one Thomas Cartwright, the author of the second Admonition. Whitgift being, it seems, weary of the dispute, committed the future conduct of it to Hooker; who took it up with an examination of the two Admonitions, and continued it through the subsequent books of Cartwright, referring to the latter (a particular worthy to be known: for, without it, no one can tell who or what he is refuting) by the initials "T. C." and the adjunct "lib." above-mentioned. Here the matter rested, till the
To a person intended for a foreign embassy that came to him for instruction, he gave this shrewd advice: "Ever," said he, "speak truth, for if you do, you shall never be believed, and 'twill put your adversaries, (who will still hunt counter) to a loss in all their disquisitions and undertakings.' See also his advice to Milton, concerning travel, in his "Letter" prefixed to Milton's "Comus."-H.