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WITH INTRODUCTION AND NOTES BY
GEORGE A. AITKEN
WITH EIGHT ORIGINAL PORTRAITS
AND EIGHT VIGNETTES
IN EIGHT VOLUMES
VOLUME THE FIFTH
TO THE RIGHT HONOURABLE
THOMAS, EARL OF WHARTON."
HE author of the Spectator, having e prefixed before each of his volumes
the name of some great person to whom he has particular obligations,
lays his claim to your Lordship's patronage upon the same account. I must confess, my Lord, had not I already received great instances of your favour, I should have been afraid of submitting a work of this nature to your perusal.
1 Thomas Wharton, born in 1640, was appointed by William III. Comptroller of the Household and a justice in Eyre. In 1706 he was created Viscount Winchendon and Earl of Wharton, and in 1708 Lord-Lieutenant of Ireland (when Addison became Secretary to the Lord-Lieutenant). In 1714, after the accession of George I., Lord Wharton was made Lord Privy Seal, and given the titles of Marquis of Wharton and Malmesbury, in England, and Earl of Rathfarnham and Marquis Catherlough, in Ireland. He died in 1715, when he was succeeded by his son Philip, afterwards Duke of Wharton.
Lord Wharton was a clever politician and a man of wit, but lacked the moral character of his Presbyterian father, the good
You are so thoroughly acquainted with the characters of men, and all the parts of human life, that it is impossible for the least misrepresentation of them to escape your notice. It is your Lordship's particular distinction that you are master of the whole compass of business, and have signalised yourself in all the different scenes of it. We admire some for the dignity, others for the popularity of their behaviour ; some for their clearness of judgment, others for their happiness of expression ; some for the laying of schemes, and others for the putting of them in execution. It is your Lordship only who enjoys these several talents united, and that, too, in as great perfection as others possess them singly. Your enemies acknowledge this great extent in your Lordship’s character, at the same time that they use their utmost industry and invention to derogate from it. But it is for your honour that those who are now your enemies were always so. You have acted in so much consistency with yourself, and promoted the interests of your country in so uniform a manner, that even those who would misrepresent Lord Wharton.' Swift attacked him bitterly in "A Short Character of His Excellency Thomas, Earl of Wharton,' 1710, and in A Pretended Letter of Thanks from Lord Wharton to the Lord Bishop of St. Asaph,' 1712. In the Tatler (No. 130) Wharton's • zeal for the Protestant Interest,' and dexterity in defeating the skill and artifice of its enemies,' were adduced as proofs of his fitness to govern Ireland.
your generous designs for the public good, cannot but approve the steadiness and intrepidity with which you pursue them. It is a most sensible pleasure to me that I have this opportunity of professing myself one of your great admirers, and, in a very particular manner,