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The Life and Letters of John Gibson Lockhart
Chapter 18: 1837-43
John Gibson Lockhart to Henry Hart Milman, 17 January 1843

Vol. I. Preface
Vol. I Contents.
Chapter 1: 1794-1808
Chapter 2: 1808-13
Chapter 3: 1813-15
Chapter 4: 1815-17
Chapter 5: 1817-18
Chapter 6: 1817-19
Chapter 7: 1818-20
Chapter 8: 1819-20
Chapter 9: 1820-21
Chapter 10: 1821-24
Chapter 11: 1817-24
Chapter 12: 1821-25
Chapter 13: 1826
Vol. II Contents
Chapter 14: 1826-32
Chapter 15: 1828-32
Chapter 16: 1832-36
Chapter 17: 1837-39
Chapter 18: 1837-43
Chapter 19: 1828-48
Chapter 20: 1826-52
Chapter 21: 1842-50
Chapter 22: 1850-53
Chapter 23: 1853-54
Chapter 24: Conclusion
Vol. II Index
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Licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-Noncommercial-Share Alike 3.0 Unported License.
Produced by CATH
January 17, 1843.

My dear Milman,—I am exceedingly vexed to find that the sheets containing your article on Macaulay are not printed off—for the gross insult to Croker in his new article on Madame d’Arblay makes it very difficult for me to sanction the publication of your eulogies on the perpetrator. The detection of the imposture about F. Burney’s age was made in the Quarterly Review, as you know. Can the editor allow his contributor to be thus handled, and then caress the enemy? Would not
Croker have reason to complain of me as deserting the soldier of my own flag?

“Do not suppose that I blame Macaulay for criticising Croker in regard to that affair; but it might have been done in the style of a gentleman. It is done in a style of low, vulgar rancour and injustice.

“Nor, on the other hand, do I wish to take credit for any special tenderness of feeling towards Croker. I think he has, of late especially, not treated Murray and myself at all well in the concerns of the Quarterly Review. But he is at least one of our most prominent hands; and can we continue to accept his assistance without giving him some right to reclaim against the appearance, at this moment, of such a paper as yours? Make the case your own. Suppose such an attack on you, from so distinguished a quarter, for what you had written in the Quarterly Review some years ago. Suppose you had been assailed by Blomfield, or Whately, or Sydney Smith; and suppose it to be felt that the odium ecclesiasticum had been mainly excited by your use of the Quarterly Review against doctrines or tenets or Church parties espoused by such an assailant as one of these.

“There is another difficulty which I must state. I never received any civility from Peel in the line of patronage but once—when he took office in 1834.1 Croker then called here and said Peel was anxious

1 In 1838 Lockhart, writing to Mr. Cadell, described Peel as “the greatest Reformer in heart, and the ablest in head, of his period.”

to know if
Murray and I had anything to suggest to the new Minister for the department of Literature and Science. Murray said he wished there could be a pension for Mrs. Somerville. I expressed my anxiety (Murray heartily concurring) that you might have some London preferment, if possible a prebend, in order to break the force of a prejudice which at that time seemed so strong as to make your advancement in the Church improbable, unless something were done effectually to discountenance it; and secundo, that Crabbe’s son might get a Crown living in place of his curacy. Now all these three things were done, and that almost immediately; and next time I saw Lord Lyndhurst, which was at a drawing-room or levee, he said to me, ‘You are a pretty fellow—I find your man Crabbe is a keen Whig, if not a Radical, and he has got his living.’ He laughed heartily; and when I told him I had not doubted that he would like the opportunity of serving so good a man, the son of such a father, all the better for his being of the opposite colour, he laughed the more. I have no similar evidence to connect your prebend with Croker’s intermediation. Perhaps you know that other and not less efficient machinery was worked in your behalf. But I thought I must state what I knew of the affair at this moment, and I am sure you will consider the statement as worthy of your candid reflection under all the circumstances.—Ever affectionately yours,

J. G. Lockhart.”