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THE FRIENDS AND PATRONS OF MR. BOWYER.
(See vol. II. p. 90.)
Robert Ainsworth, born at Woodyale, in the parish of Eccles, in Lancashire, four miles from Manchester, in September 16'6"0, was educated at Bolton in that county; and taught school in the same town. On coming to London, he opened a considerable boarding-school at Bethnal Green, where in 1608 he wrote and published a short treatise of Grammatical Institution, inscribed to Sir William Hustler, and reprinted in 1736, 8vo, under the title of "The most natural and easy Way of Institution, by making a domestic Education less chargeable to Parents, and more easy and beneficial to Children. By which Method, Youth may not only make a very considerable Progress in Languages, but also in Arts and Sciences, in two Years." Mr. Ainsworth soon after removed to Hackney, and successively to other villages near London, where he taught with good reputation many years; when, having acquired a moderate fortune, he left off, and lived privately.
About the year 1714, it having been suggested to some principal booksellers, that a new compendious English and Latin Dictionary, upon a plan somewhat similar to Faber's Thesaurus, was much wanted, Mr. Ainsworth was thought of as a proper person to undertake so long and troublesome a work; and how well he executed it, has been sufficiently shewn by the rapid sale of several large impressions.
Mr. Ainsworth was elected F. A.S. in IJ24; and, besides the Grammatical Treatise above mentioned,
he he published, 1./ " Monumenta Vetustatis Kempiana *, ex vetustis Scriptoribus illustrata, eosque vicissim illustrantia, in duas partes divisa: quarum altera mumias, simulacra, statuas, signa, luces, inscripfiones, vasa. lucernas, amuleta, lapides, gemmas, annulos, fibulas cum aliis veterum reliquiis; altera nummos materia modoque diversos continet. 17-20," 8vo; 2. " Io-£»ov, sive ex veteris Monumenti Isiaci Descriptione Isidis Delubrum reseratum, 1729* 4to; 3. " De Clypeo Camilli antiquo, operis elegantissimi, et cum per tot stecula duraverat, integritatis plane mirand«E, e reliquiis Musei Woodwardiani, apud CI. V. Ric. King, Trib. Mil. adservato, Dissertatio. Pnemittitur ejusdem Monumenti argumentique limbo insculpti descriptio -f~, 1734,"
* The gre-.test part of this collection was originally made by Mr. J jhn Gailhard, who had been governor to George the first Lord Carteret, so crpated Oct. 12, 1681, and sold to his Lordship for an annuity of 200i. After the death of that Lord, which happened Sept. 22, 1695, Mr. John K 'inp bought a considerable part of the collection during the minority of John Lord Carteret (afterwards Earl Granville), and more after his death. Mr. Kemp died Sept. 19. 1717 (aged about 52); and, by his will, directed that Robert Earl of Oxford, or his son Edward Lord Harley, or one of them, should have his whole collection of antiquities, with the books belonging to them, for 20O0/ But, this proposal not beintj accepted, that collection was sold bv auction, at the Phoenix Tavern in Pall Mall, on the 23d, 24th, 25th, and 27th of March 1721, in 293 articles, for 1090/ Ss. 6d. Henry Fail of Winchelsea saw them in Gailharo"s hands at Angiers 1676, and afterwards improved at Paris 1682. Six antient inscriptions, bought at Mr. Kemp's sale by Dr. Rawlinson, are now at Oxford, and published among the " Marmora Oxoniensia." Several others purchased by Ebenezer Mussel, esq. were resold at the auction of his curiosities 1765. See Maty's Life of Mead j and Gough'a British Topography, vol. I. p. 671.
-f This article had before appeared at the end of " Museum Woodwardianum, or Catalogue of the Doctor's library and curiosities sold by auction at Covent Garden, 1723," 8vo. See Ward's Lives of the Gresham Professors, p. 291. "The latter part of this catalogue, or museum, was drawn up by Mr. Ainsworlh, though the Doctor had himself described most of the statues, tables, and vases, and written large notes upon most of them." Ward. MS. p. 300. S ie history of this famous shield, British Topography, vol. I. p.; -■>.—At the end of some copies of "Joannis Ker Selectse de Lingua Latina Observationes, Lond.. 4to; and 4. "Thesaurus Linguae Latinse Compen~ darius; or, a compendious Dictionary of the Latin Tongue, designed chiefly for the use of the British Nation, 1736," 4to.—" Whilst this work was preparing, the execution of it was attended with so many difficulties, that it went on very slowly for a long time, and for some years was entirely suppressed. But afterwards, on account of Mr. Ainsworth's advanced age, and a disorder that affected his eyes, I was desired to assist in reviewing the copy; and at his request, and the booksellers concerned, accepted of it, after about a dozen sheets had been wrought off." Preface to the Second Edition; which was published in 1746 by Samuel Patrick*, LL.D. usher to the Charter-house; with
1729." 8vo. occurs "An English-Latin Tabic, &c." to which 6mall tract Mr. Ainsworth has put the initials of his name.
* Soon after the publication of the former edition of this work, I received the following note from an unknown friend: "Sam Patrick was my school-master; I went to him, I think, about 17-10 or 41; and he died about 1748. He was a man truly inoffensive in his disposition, of great reading in the Latin Classics, and as great simplicity of manners. So inattentive and unsuspicious was he, that the boys frequently put the most ridiculous impositions upon him; such, among others, as tying a paper-bag to his wig, which, without ever being sensible of. he would walk about the streets with, till either he perceived the people laugh at him, or some kind person informed him of the. trick. When he returned to school, he never seemed to recollect what had been done to him, or took any notice about it. When a ScotchUniversity had given him adiplomaof LL.D.he took very late in life sacred orders; but never, I believe, had any preferment; nor do] know that he ever preached. I have heaid him read prayers, which I think he did pretty well. Upon Poj>e's writing an epitaph [for Sbakspeare's monument in Westminster Abbey], and using thewords/wMicuji amor posuit, he objected to the propriety of the expression publicus amor, upon which Pope said humorously, '. he believ ed Patrick might understand the meaning of asingle word as well a^ any man; but the power of judging properly of two words together exceeded his abilities.' By the bye, 1 think I recollect having seen in Ovid's Works ■publicus amur used in that sense. But, to my knowledge, he once criticized upon words; and, though 1 was at that time a mere boy, I have thought since, very justly. He was giving an account to a niilitaiy gentleman, who understood not the least of languages, of some famous book published at that time, the author of which used, he was telling many additions and improvements; to which Mr. Ainsworth himself contributed, as did also Dr. Ward, who had given his assistance in the first edition*.
the gentleman, this improper expression, 'at this time various incidents arising." It was highly absurd, he said, to use 'incidents arising,' when the word incident itself, from in and cado, signified to fall."
* In the second edition, however, Mr. Bowyer in MS. has remarked, that "There are many gross mistakes; particularly interpreting gena [cheeks] to signify the eye-lashes, from a law of the XII Tables, Mulieres ne radunto genas. [Radere; i. e. unguibus, says Festus. On F.<?»;iou»xn<nx, 1 Cor. xv. 3, 4, &c] And projicit [throws away, or lays aside] ampullas et sesquipedalia verba, Hor. Art. Poet. 97, he interprets utters and makes use of, contrary to the sense of the place, and of the constant use of the word; so wfoi'rip in Greek." It is, however, the best work of the kind that has hitherto appeared. Dr. Patrick dying soon after, a third edition was superintended by Mr. Kimber in 1751, with little or no variation; and in 1752 an edition, in two volumes folio, much improved, by Mr. William Young, a genius far superior to either of the preceding editors; and whose abilities, if he could have bestowed the proper application, would have enabled him to publish a better Latin Dictionaiy than any that has ever appeared. (Mr. Young, I may here observe, was the real Parson Adams of Fielding.)—An edition in two volumes 8vo, was published in 1758, under the inspection of Mr. Nathanael Thomas; who corrected a fourth edition in 4to, 1761.—In 1773, the very learned Dr. Morell, at the age of 70, corrected, for the third time, an edition of this Dictionary, as appears by his letter to Messrs. Longman and Johnston prefixed to it. "There are few names," he observes, " so great Hs to enhance the sale of any book whatever, if its own utility does not recommend it: and as to myself, not being a dangler, or in any way importunate, by constitution; since, after frequent dedications, by permission, by request, I can only say with my late friend Dr. Young, 'I have been so long remembered, I aw forgot;' I was induced to inscribe this work to you, with whom alone I can boast a mutual obligation." This was the fifth edition in 4to. The learned Veteran superintended also an octavo edition in one volume 1774, and in 1780 another edition in 4to.—It appears hy an authentic paper, intituled, "An Account of the Expence of correcting and improving sundry Books," 1776, folio, that Mr. Ainsworth received Sur the first edition of his Dictionaiy 6667. 17*- Gd. For the second edition his executors were paid 250/.; Dr. Patrick 101/. lis. 9d.; ana Dr. Ward 26/. 5s. Mr. Kimber had twenty guineas for correcting the third edition; and Mr. Young 184/. 10s. for his improvements in the folio. Besides these sums 218/. Ss. had been paid by the booksellers to Dr. Morell for correcting Ainsworth, and 261/. ISs. to Mr. Thomas. In the whole,v 1730/. 10s. 3d. By the same paper it appears,
that He had likewise a turn both for Latin and English poetry, some single poems of his having been printed in each of those languages. In 1721 he communicated a curious grammatical observation to Mr Chishull, who styles him "doctissimus R. Ainsworth, amicus meus et vicinus, ob singularem eruditioneni et humanitatem inter paucos sestimandus *." Mr. Ainsworth was remarkably near-sighted; but a letter from him, exhibited at the Antiquarian Society in 1779, shews that he wrote an astonishingly neat hand.
In the latter part of his life Mr. Ainsworth used to employ himself very much in rummaging the shops of obscure brokers in every quarter of the t^wn; by which means he often picked up old coins ^nd other valuable curiosities at a small expence; and became possessed of a very fine collection of English coins, which he sold singly to several gentlemen a short time before his death, which happened at London, April 4, 1J43, at the age of 83. He was buried, according to his own desire, in the cemetery of Poplar, under the following monumental inscription, composed by himself:
that Dr. Patrick had been paid 40/. Mr. Young 50 guineas, and Dr. Morell 200 guineas, for correcting the Greek Lexicon of Hederic; and that, in the space of about 40 years (to the very great credit of the proprietors) nearly 12,000/. had been paid to authors and editors of Dictionaries and other large works, over and above the original sum given to them for their copies.
Richard Hogarth, father of the inimitable Painter, may be added to the Latin Lexicographers. He came to London, from Westmorland, to seek his fortune, in company with Dr. Gibson, the Bp. of London's brother; and was employed as a corrector of the press, which in those days was not considered as a mean employment. He published in 1712, "Grammatical Disquisitions; or, an Examination of the Eight Parts of Speech, by way of Question and Answer, English and Latin, &c. written for the Use of Schools of Great Britain, by Richaid Hogarth, Schoolmaster." He meditated also an improved edition of Littleton's Dictionary, and Robertson's Phrases; of which Mr. John Ireland lias one volume, with numerous coll ections, and above 400 pages of MS. closely written. Mr. Bindley has a second volume (the Latin-English part) in which no farther than the first two lettei-s were completed.—Richard Hogarth died about 1721.
* Inscriptio Sigca, 1721, p. 28. Aiitiq. Asiat. 1725, p. 22.