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against their own body was false, scandalous, and malicious. Lucas attempted to defend himself, but was refused a bearing; while the common council, in a second meeting, not only voted a confirmation of the former censure, but passed a resolution of thanks to the author of a pamphlet called “ Lucas Detected,” which was read in council.
The result was an appeal on the part of Lucas and his friends, from the common council to the corporations. So far they succeeded. Fifteen out of the twenty-five corporations took their part.
But, in the mean time, a general collision of public sentiment and party feeling could not fail to grow out of such a prolonged and exciting contest. In all party strivings, it is known that everything that is done or said, and every passion that is excited becomes magnified and altered as it passes from circle to circle, and that all accusation, when it thus loads the breeze of rumour, soon assumes the most extreme shape. The writings and speeches of Lucas were understood as the cover of worse designs than they expressed; and it, indeed, required no misinterpretation to render them in the highest degree obnoxious. He was supposed to be the author of a weekly paper, called the “ Censor,” which was filled with the most scandalous attacks upon his antagonists. Of this the language was brutal, malignant, and replete with the froth and venom of the lowest malignity; so that, indeed, we have our doubts as to the fairness of ascribing it to Lucas, though it breathes of the atmosphere in which his very virtues must, to some extent, have placed him.
While those disputes were at the height, lord Harrington, the lordlieutenant, came over. His character was popular, and it was a general impression that he would be inclined to side against the aldermen. Some circumstances of a determining complexion were yet unknown, and there were current many reports of his private conversation and sentiments, very much adapted to awaken the expectations of the popular party. Under such impressions, Lucas was induced to wait upon him, and to present him with a copy of the papers which formed the substance of those writings and addresses for which he had been accused. The lord-lieutenant listened to him, with the civility which belonged to his own character and to strict justice. He asked him questions, listened politely and patiently to his replies, and dismissed him with every mark of courtesy. Lucas took all this, as might be anticipated from his own blunt and frank simplicity of character and ignorance of manners. He failed to notice that lord Harrington had expressed no opinion, but had simply, and in candour, given him a fair hearing. It did not occur to him that no inference could be drawn from the courtesy of a gentleman, or that the lordlieutenant did not feel himself called on to exercise that more rude office of repulsion, which more appropriately belongs to the Cerberus who stands at the outer door. Lucas, in his simplicity, considered the field his own, and felt himself authorized to reckon on the countenance of the lord-lieutenant. On the next levee he accordingly came, but was surprised and mortified by an intimation to withdraw.
There could be little doubt as to the real meaning of such an indication: and a few days after, on the opening of the parliament, the lordlieutenant's speech contained an allusion too plain to be misunderstood. Two days after, the subject was directly introduced; a complaint was made, enumerating all the several writings in which Lucas had expressed the most decided sentiments of a popular tendency, and it was moved and ordered that he and his printer should next day attend, to be examined before a committee of the house. · He attended, offered to vindicate himself, and was, of course, told that he was there only to answer such questions as should be put. Among other evidence brought forward, the books and papers which he had presented to the lord-lieutenant were produced. When he was ordered to withdraw, four resolutions were passed, affirmatory of his guilt, and calling for a prosecution, with an order that he should at once be committed a close prisoner in Newgate jail, for his infringement and violation of the privileges of the house.
Sir Thomas Prendergast alone made an ineffectual stand in his favour, and it was clear that there was a strong combination of hostility accumulated against him, from which it was also plain that there was no efficient shelter. Convinced of this, Lucas withdrew from the impending danger, by returning to England..
His absence, as usual in such cases, abated the edge of hostility, and gave rise to the gradual development of a reaction in his favour, of which he afterwards reaped the benefit.
On his return, he was elected member for the city. Here a new field was open for the exertion of his practical talent and keen popular spirit. He was not slow to seize upon the occasion, and took a prominent part in obtaining leave to bring in a bill to limit the duration of parliaments. As this is but one of the incidents of a long-continued struggle, we shall not here enter upon the discussion of it. We cannot afford to prolong the memoir of Lucas, and have only so far gone into detail as we consider the foregoing transactions to have an important relation to the first commencement of a train of historical events, into which we are to enter in detailed succession in a succeeding memoir. We must now hurry to a close.
The remainder of his political life may be succinctly given in the list of bills which Lucas endeavoured in vain to bring in for the amelioration and advantage of the country-all, we may add, unquestionably adapted to remedy great and obvious evils. Of these it was severally · the intent to secure the freedom and independence of parliament, by ascertaining the qualifications of the members, and for vacating the seats of such members as should accept of any office under the crown.
In 1765, the heads of a bill which had been sent over to England were returned, with a new interpolated clause, vesting a dispensing power in the king in council. Against this Lucas, with other active members of the popular party, exerted themselves in vain, and Lucas published an address on the subject to his constituents, in which he attacked the measure with his wonted spirit and impetuosity.
As might be indeed imagined, the man of popular assemblies was not altogether as effective as a speaker in an assembly of lawyers and trained orators. The following extract from Mr Hardy, in his life of Charlemont, is probably as correct as it is graphic. “ As a politician, he was, as the Duc de Beaufort was called during the time of the Fronde at Paris, un roi des halles—a sovereign of the corporations.
In the house of commons his importance was withered, and comparatively shrunk to nothing; for the most furious reformer must admit that, however the representation was in many instances narrowed into private interests, it still embraced the most conspicuous and useful orders in the state, where, if education and knowledge are not to be found, how are they to be sought after? Lucas had, in truth, little or no knowledge as a leader in parliament; and his efforts there were too often displayed in a sort of tempestuous alacrity to combat men, whose lofty disregard of him left them at full liberty to pursue their argument as if nothing had disturbed them. Self-command, whether constitutional or arising from occasional contempt, is a most potent auxiliary. His opponents were sometimes, indeed, rendered indignant; but, whether calm or angry, the battle always left him worse than before. Yet, with all this precipitancy, and too frequent want of knowledge, he annexed a species of dignity to himself in the house of commons that was not without its effect."
Lucas was, nevertheless, very much respected by several of the most eminent English as well as Irish noblemen of his generation, and this fact has value in our general estimate of him in two ways. The higher nobility of England, in very few cases, and those marked as exceptions by some eccentricity of character, have been known to stoop so very low as to countenance pretensions arising from mere popularity. Such persons living in the great world, and conversant with the ways of men, are always unlikely to be imposed upon by the vulgar insolence of pretended patriotism; and, as the conduct of Lucas was, in fact, such as might appear to expose him to the suspicion of being actuated by a low popular ambition, we are inclined to consider the respect with which he was met as tending to prove the same inference which we have already urged. We consider that it must have been felt among the better order of public men at that time, that Lucas had right and justice on his side, and the real good of Ireland at heart. The king, George III., also, may be inferred, from some passages in the writings of Lucas, to have in some way shown him kindness, and the loyalty of Lucas was, like all his sentiments, enthusiastic.
In one of his later writings, there is an affecting confession of the weariness he felt of a life of labour and sacrifice spent in vain. We may extract a few sentences:-“ I have quitted a comfortable settlement in a free country, to embark in your service. I have attended constantly, closely, strictly to my duty. I have broke my health, impaired my fortune, hurt my family, and lost an object dearer to me than life, by engaging with unwearied care and painful assiduity, in this painful, thankless, perilous service. All this might be tolerable, if I could find myself useful to you or to my country. But the only benefit I can see, results to those whom I cannot look upon as friends to my country; bands of policemen and pensioners, whose merit is enhanced, and whose number has been generally increased in proportion to the opposition given to the measures of ministers. I dare not neglect, much less desert my station, but I wish by any lawful or honourable means, for my dismissal.”
As a physician, Dr Lucas obtained considerable practice. Lord Charlemont was among those who employed and derived advantage from his skill. It is not unlikely that his political character and connexion must have extended his professional walk not a little; while it may be as justly presumed to have engrossed much of his time and industry; but then it is to be acknowledged, that medical science lay within a smaller compass. In 1756, he published a treatise upon the Bath waters, which raised his medical reputation greatly at the time.
In his old age, he was an object of general respect—which his appearance and venerable deportment in society contributed to increase. During the latter years of his life, he was reduced to the lowest state of infirmity by repeated attacks of gout, so that he was always carried to the house of commons, where he could scarcely stand for a moment. In this situation he is thus described, “the gravity and uncommon neatness of his dress; his gray, venerable locks, blending with a pale but interesting countenance, in which an air of beauty was still visible, altogether excited attention, and I never knew a stranger come into the house, without asking who he was.”
He was married three times--at his last marriage he was so crippled as to be carried to bed. He left children by his three wives.
He died in 1771. He had a public funeral, attended by the lord mayor and principal members of the corporation in their robes—as well as by numerous members of the house of commons. A subscription was raised, chiefly among the merchants of Dublin, for a statue which was placed in the royal exchange.
The history of the family of Malone is deeply interesting for its well authenticated antiquity, and will be found by the curious reader detailed at sufficient length in Mr Archdall's edition of Lodge.* From this valuable account, we select a few particulars.
The Malones are a branch of the O‘Conor family. The reader is already aware, that at an early period, before fixed surnames began to identify by a common name the descendants of a common ancestor, the individuals of a family were designated by some local or personal distinction—a custom which is indeed yet to be traced among the Irish
though these distinctions are confined to their own language. Of this, examples may be pointed out in the branches of the O'Conors yet remaining. One of the descendants of this family having become bald, or been tonsured in honour of St John-for Archdall mentions two accounts-obtained the name of · Maol Eoin,' i. e. bald John. This became in the course of time corrupted into Malone: and as this occurred soon after the custom of surnames was introduced, it became the family name.
In the wars between the kings of Meath and Connaught, the latter were mostly successful. And in the latter end of the eleventh century, they obtained a settlement in West Meath, for the branch of bald
* Lodge, Vol. vii. p. 280.
John. This was a district closely bordering on Connaught, on the east of the Shannon, and a few miles from Athlone. As this was near the ancient see of Clonmacnoise, the Malones were considerable benefactors to the abbey, of which many of them had been abbots. The ancient estate of the family is called Ballymahone, or Riverstown, within 5 miles from Athlone, and is we believe yet in the family.
We now pass to Richard, the father of Anthony Malone. If the want of materials did not offer an insurmountable obstacle, it would be no less our duty to commemorate this eminent man in a separate memoir, as from the brief and scanty accounts of him which we possess, he seems to have been a man of first rate legal and forensic powers, and to have possessed talents very much the same in quality and combination, as those of his more known son. We shall here offer the few particulars which remain.
While yet a student in the temple, Richard Malone was employed by the interest of lord Galway as a negotiator in Holland, and obtained the warm approbation of king William for the discretion and ability with which he acquitted himself of his charge. In the year 1700, he was called to the Irish bar, at which he soon rose to so high a reputation that no other barrister of his time, or, excepting his son of the generation immediately succeeding, was considered to have any claim of equal comparison with him. The following portrait is given by Mr Archdall:-“ Richard Malone is said to have somewhat resembled the late Sir Robert Walpole, but was handsomer and better made than that eminent statesman. His person and deportment were graceful and engaging; his countenance was placid, yet expressive; and his voice strong and sweet. In every cause in which he was engaged he was so strenuous and ardent that, when defeated, his clients acquiesced without murmuring, from a conviction that nothing was lost for want of ability or exertion. In stating cases, he peculiarly excelled, and was no less happy in his addresses to juries, whose passions he could at all times wind to his purpose. His knowledge in the subtle and profound parts of the law, and his accuracy in drawing pleadings, both in law and equity, were equal to his elocution, which was of the first rate."
Such was the worthy father of a worthy son who followed in his track in times more favourable to his fame. He left four sons, who all arrived at high practice during their father's life. Anthony, the eldest, and the subject of the following notice, was born in December, 1700. In his twentieth year he entered as a gentleman commoner in Christ Church College, Oxford. He continued there two years, after which he removed to London to pursue his legal studies in the Temple; and in May, 1726, he was called to the Irish bar. The following year he was elected to represent the county of Westmeath, in parliament—and continued to hold his seat without any interruption till 1760.
In 1733, he married a daughter of Sir Ralph Gore, speaker of the house of commons. In 1740, he was appointed prime serjeant, and held the office for fourteen years, till 1754, when he was dismissed for joining in an effort to maintain the right of the house of commons to dispose of unappropriated sums without the crown's consent—an act