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. WILLIAM AND MARY.
WILLIAM THE THIRD, King of England, Prince of Orange and Stadtholder of Holland, was the posthumous son of William the Second, Prince of Orange, and of MARY, daughter of Charles the First, King of England. He was born November 14, 1650, and educated in the principles of a free government. By marriage with Mary, eldest daughter of James the Second, he became well acquainted with the interests of the people of England. To detail his early history will be unnecessary, but he was always the firin opposer of Louis the Fourteenth, the profligate patron of Gallic tyranny. Invited by the principal heads of the English nation, he, with five hundred vessels and fourteen thousand men, landed at Torbay, November 5, and became the founder of the Revolution, 1688. By this successful expedition, William and MARY became King and Queen of England : their reign forms a splendid epoch in the annals of British history.
In Scotland, the Whigs alone supported William; and Ireland, where the mass of the population was Catholic, openly opposed him. His tolerant principles, and his desire of favouring the Dissenters, prejudiced the English church zealots against him, so that a large proportion of his subjects were secret or open enemies to his crown. His reign, therefore, pregnant with events, forms an interesting portion of the bistory of this country. Having embarked for Ireland, he extinguished the Rebellion, by gaining the battle of the
ODE TO KING WILLIAM.
Boyne, July 1, 1690; though he lost his General, the gallant Schomberg, on that memorable day!
The subsequent Ode to King William, on his successes in Ireland, was the second piece. Dean Swift ever wrote, and is not very generally known. It was not often that this surly bard eulogized any human being :
To purchase kingdoms and to buy renown,
Are acts peculiar to dissembling France;
And solid virtue does your name advance!
Your matchless courage, with your prudence joins,
The glorious structure of your fame to raise,
And into adoration turns our praise.
Had you by dull succession gained your Crown,
(Cowards are monarchs by that title made ;) Part of your merit chance would call her own,
And half your virtues had been lost in shade.
But now your worth its just reward shall have;
What trophies and what triumphs are your due !
At once deserve a Crown and gain it too ?
On WILLIAM's return, he renewed his opposition on the Continent to Louis the Fourteenth; the expenses of which, occasioned the commencement of THE NATIONAL DEBT, which now, alas ! like a millstone, seems to hang round the neck of our be.
DEATH OF WILLIAM.
loved country! The peace of Ryswick, in 1696, by obliging Louis to acknowledge William the lawful Sovereign of Great Britain, gave repose to the world.
The preceding year, William sustained a severe loss by the decease of his beloved consort, who died of the small-pox! He bitterly bewailed the event, and indeed some say, never fully recovered it. Mary bore an excellent character, both as wife and queen. Tillotson, in his Funeral Sermon, pays a warm tribute of respect to her memory. Upon the return of peace, the military establishment was considerably reduced, even to seven thousand men, all natives. William was therefore obliged to dismiss his favourite Dutch guards ; this put him into ill-humour with a nation who had accepted his services without giving him any return of affection. His father-in-law, James the Second, died near Paris, 1701 ; but his son, commonly called the Pretender, was proclaimed in his stead by his adherents, who were not few either at home or abroad. On the meeting of Parliament, William made an universally applauded speech on the state of public affairs, urging the necessity of mutual confidence between the crown and the people. However, he did not long enjoy this return of popular favour, for falling from his horse, in taking an airing, a fever followed, and on March 8, 1702, terminated his life, in the 52nd year of his age. The animal on which he rode, tripped his foot against a mole-hill, and thus occasioned the fatal event. His enemies, therefore, adopted the toast-the little gentleman with
242 DE FOE'S TROE-BORN ENGLISHMAN. . the velvet coatexpressive, no doubt, of their wit, as well as their malignity. It is grievous to think that the life of this valuable Monarch should have more than once been exposed to the hand of the assassin. On one occasion, the wretches were seized, condemned, and executed. But this Patriot King had been the favourite of Providence- under whose auspices he at length died in peace.
By turns they tell,
Among the paltry maneuvres to which the Jacobite party had recourse, with the view of insulting WilLIAM, was the reproach of his being a Foreigner ! Daniel De Foe, author of Robinson Crusoe, took up the idea in a spirited poem, entitled The True-born Englishman, and administered proper chastisement:
These are the heroes who despise The Dutch,
STANZAS ON WILLIAM'S DEATH.
Norwegian pirates, buccaneering Danes,
Admirable, also, is the satirical Bard's. conclusion:
Could but our ANCESTORS retrieve their fate, And see their offspring thus degenerate, How we contend for births and names unknown, And build on their past actions, not our own, They'd cancel records, and their tombs deface, And openly disowu the vile degen'rate race; For fame of Families is all a cheat, 'Tis PERSONAL VIRTUB only makes us great! The most recent character of WILLIAM is by Belsham, in his Memoirs of Great Britain, and, under the Thanksgiving for the Fifth of November, the CHURCH SERVICE has a fine prayer grateful to his memory.
Dr. ISAAC WATTS, whose family, on the Revolution of 1688, emerged, along with thousands, into daylight and liberty, wrote the following epitaph on WILLIAM, fraught with the inspiration of religious gratitude :
Beneath those honours of a TOMB
Greatness in humble ruin lies;