LORD  BYRON  and  his  TIMES
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My Friends and Acquaintance
R. Plumer Ward VI

Vol I Contents
Charles Lamb I
Charles Lamb II
Charles Lamb III
Charles Lamb IV
Charles Lamb V
Charles Lamb VI
Charles Lamb VII
Charles Lamb VIII
Charles Lamb IX
Charles Lamb X
Thomas Campbell I
Thomas Campbell II
Thomas Campbell III
Thomas Campbell IV
Thomas Campbell V
Thomas Campbell VI
Thomas Campbell VII
Lady Blessington I
Lady Blessington II
Lady Blessington III
Lady Blessington IV
Lady Blessington V
R. Plumer Ward I
R. Plumer Ward II
R. Plumer Ward III
R. Plumer Ward IV
R. Plumer Ward V
‣ R. Plumer Ward VI
Appendix vol I
Vol II Contents
R. Plumer Ward VII
R. Plumer Ward VIII
R. Plumer Ward IX
R. Plumer Ward X
R. Plumer Ward XI
R. Plumer Ward XII
R. Plumer Ward XIII
R. Plumer Ward XIV
R. Plumer Ward XV
R. Plumer Ward XVI
R. Plumer Ward XVII
R. Plumer Ward XVIII
R. Plumer Ward XIX
R. Plumer Ward XX
R. Plumer Ward XXI
R. Plumer Ward XXII
R. Plumer Ward XXIII
Horace & James Smith I
Horace & James Smith II
William Hazlitt I
William Hazlitt II
William Hazlitt III
William Hazlitt IV
William Hazlitt V
William Hazlitt VI
William Hazlitt VII
William Hazlitt VIII
Appendix vol II
Vol III Contents
William Hazlitt IX
William Hazlitt X
William Hazlitt XI
William Hazlitt XII
William Hazlitt XIII
William Hazlitt XIV
William Hazlitt XV
William Hazlitt XVI
William Hazlitt XVII
William Hazlitt XVIII
William Hazlitt XIX
William Hazlitt XX
William Hazlitt XXI
William Hazlitt XXII
William Hazlitt XXIII
William Hazlitt XXIV
William Hazlitt XXV
William Hazlitt XXVI
Laman Blanchard I
Laman Blanchard II
Laman Blanchard III
Laman Blanchard IV
Laman Blanchard V
Laman Blanchard VI
Laman Blanchard VII
Laman Blanchard VIII
R & T Sheridan I
R & T Sheridan II
R & T Sheridan III
R & T Sheridan IV
R & T Sheridan V
R & T Sheridan VI
R & T Sheridan VII
R & T Sheridan VIII
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Licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-Noncommercial-Share Alike 3.0 Unported License.
Produced by CATH

As the following personal sketch of Mr. Plumer Ward belongs to about the period more immediately referred to in the preceding sections, I will insert it here. It was written as part of a series of Pen and Ink Portraits supposed to be taken at a West End Club House:—

Observe (as he stands with his back to the fire, at the upper extremity of the room) that tall and somewhat stately, but slim figure, perfectly upright, and with the head thrown slightly back, giving to the air and bearing an aristocratic cast, without interfering with that bland amenity which keeps possession of all the features of a face wherein years and the spirit of youth blend together in friendly contention, and put to shame the
unwise and futile axiom of the old song, which declares that—
“Crabbed age and youth
Cannot live together.”
It is true that “crabbed” age and youth are at variance: as what is not at variance with “crabbed age?” But the couplet would apply the epithet as one proper to age, and necessarily belonging to it; which is not more just than it would be to apply it to youth itself. That this is so, witness the very remarkable countenance before us—in respect of which, whether the thoughts, feelings, and associations that give light and life to it emanate from a mind that has counted sixteen winters or sixty, would puzzle the most penetrating glance to tell, from the expression alone. Or rather it demonstrates that the mind and heart which speak there are instruments upon which the hand of Time has no power—that,
“Age cannot dim,
Nor custom stale, the infinite variety”
of the intellectual music resulting from the harmonious conformity of all the parts and particulars of which they are made up.


Perhaps there is nothing in connexion with our intellectual nature more immediately gratifying in itself, and more directly and surely leading to after gratification, than the contemplation of a character in which the qualities and attributes we have referred to are so happily allied as they are in that of the author of “Tremaine,” and the happy results of which are so legibly written on their visible exponents. If there is a fear more pervading than all others that oppress the human mind after a certain age, it is that of growing old. But that it is to all intents and purposes “a lost fear,” the example before us may demonstrate. If you are to believe Mr. Plumer Ward himself, he is considerably more than sixty years of age. If you are to trust to the indications set forth by nature in his face, his person, his voice, his air, his carriage, and the ever-springing green that overspreads the pleasant pastures of his mind and heart, you must conclude that the world and its ways are as new to him as to a boy of sixteen bred up on a mountain side. Where, then, shall we strike the happy mean? He cannot be so old as he says. And yet
he is among the last men to make himself out older than his certificate of birth. The secret is, not that—
“Years have brought the philosophic mind,”
but that they have brought something infinitely better—the mind where philosophy, humanity, and the refined and epicurean spirit of enjoyment, are so beautifully and inextricably blended, that they form a perpetual spring of new and happy thoughts, which—
“Put a spirit of youth in everything,”
and which spirit ever reflects itself back in corresponding exponents, upon all who look with a wise and instructed eye in that mirror of the heart, the “human face divine.”

Wordsworth, in his beautiful stanzas, entitled “A Poet’s Epitaph,” says, addressing the supposed passer-by—
“Art thou a statesman, in the van
Of public business train’d and bred?
First learn to love one living man;
Then mayst thou think upon the dead.”
How generally true is the inference here implied, witness the iron or oaken faces of the lines of “statesmen” who nightly occupy
the Treasury and Opposition Benches of our national assemblies! And to prove the rule by the exception, witness the face of the remarkable person whose portrait we are now painting. He has been not only
“In the van
Of public business train’d and bred,”
but has passed twenty consecutive years of a laborious life there; and yet, behold him as we have pictured him above; in freshness of feeling and simplicity of thought, he is a child; in tenderness of heart and gentleness of sympathy with the pleasures and the pains of his fellow-beings, his nature retains the almost feminine softness and impressibility of early youth; in vigour of thought and ardour of spirit, he is like one just entering on his career of ambitious manhood; in deep and quick sagacity and matured knowledge he would seem to have touched the goal itself; and, finally, in his deep conviction of the incapacity of all temporary and sublunary things to satisfy the cravings of the human heart and mind, or prevent them from at last returning to prey or to banquet (as the case may be) upon their own self-
engendered feelings and imaginations, and in his firm determination to act upon that conviction, and retire from the world to the “populous solitude” of his own thoughts and affections, he reaches and illustrates that last stage of intellectual advancement which teaches us that
“’Tis in ourselves that we are thus and thus,”
and that when the world and its works have ceased to be sufficient to us, we then, and not till then, may, if we please, become sufficient to ourselves.

Such is R. Plumer Ward; the favourite protegé of Pitt; the friend and companion of Canning and Peel; the right hand of every department of the public service to which he has belonged in connexion with the Government of his country; the pet of the female world of high society, from the most antiquated of its dowagers to the most blooming of its newly-budding beauties; and (best of all in our estimation) the writer of “Tremaine” and “De Vere”—the two most delightful, and at the same time the most instructive works of our day, in that most delightful and in-
structive of all classes of works, those illustrating manners and society as these affect and are affected by the human mind and heart.

Should the more sedate of our female friends desire to be made acquainted with more particulars respecting the person of their favourite writer (for such we must believe him to be, the Bulwers, Trollopes, Gores, &c., of the circulating library notwithstanding), we may inform them that his head and features are small as compared with the commanding height and carriage of his figure; that his eyes have the piercing expression of some of the gentler species of the hawk, and are overshadowed by brows that bear a remarkable likeness to the very remarkable ones of Walter Scott; that his nose is slightly retroussé, which, in connexion with an expression of sly humour about the mouth, gives a slightly sarcastic character to the general expression of the countenance; that the forehead and upper part of the head are wholly bald, the hair which remains being of light brown tinged with grey; and that the whole
face is overspread with a bloom like that of youth, and a shining smoothness, that correspond, to a degree almost of strangeness, with the intellectual youth which is the most striking characteristic of this accomplished person.