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GEORGE III. dignity of their quality. This has arisen from various circumstances, but principally these causes; ignorance of ancient usage; the infrequency of the Irish peers coming to England formerly; the custom of creating so many English and Scotch to Irish titles, such who had neither estates nor connexion in that kingdom, and the injudicious conduct of the peers themselves, who, forgetful of their dignity, obtained seats in the English House of Commons, allowing, as it were, that in this kingdom they were to be accounted commoners, not noblemen. The union has recognized their due precedency, placing them of the same rank after those of England and Scotland. As it may not be unacceptable to adduce proofs of the just claims of the nobility of Ireland to such precedency, I shall give them in a note.*
*In Magna Charta, Henry, Archbishop of Dublin, signs after the Archbishop of Canterbury, and before the English lay peers. 3 Edward II. Richard de Burgo, Earl of Ulster, signs after Gilbert de Clare, Earl of Gloucester, and preceded the English barons. 21 Edward III. the Earl of Kildare is ranked after the Earl of Pembroke, and before the Bishop of Durham, and the English Barons in the muster roll of soldiers sent to Normandy. In Richard II's reign, Robert de Vere, Earl of Oxford, after he was created Marquis of Dublin, preceded all the English Earls. When Henry VII. in 1502, contracted a marriage for his daughter Margaret with James IV. King of Scotland, the Earl of Ormond had precedency next after the Marquis of Dorset, and the Earls of Arundel and Northumberlend. Thomas Butler, seventh Earl of Ormond, in great favor with Henry VII. was summoned to the English House of Peers, by the title of Baron de Rochford, that sovereign and Henry VIII. permitting him by that stile to sit in the House of Lords here, and vote; an honor to which no other Irish peer then was entitled. As he was an earl in Ireland, he sat above all the English barons; this however is a singular case. At the interview, in 1520, between Henry VIII. and Francis I., John Kite, Archbishop of Armagh, went after Dr. Nicholas West, Bishop of Ely; who, I presume, had precedency, because he had represented the English Monarch at the French Court the year before, and perhaps was then so accounted. Dr. Kite took place of the two other English Bishops, Drs. Jeffrey Blye, and John Veycie, Bishops of Chester and Exeter. Gerald Fitzgerald, the gallant, but in the end, very unfortunate, Earl of Kildare, at this interview had his precedency above all English peers of inferior quality. At the coronation of Edward VI. the Earl of Ormond was ranked next after the Earl of Oxford, and before the inferior English noblemen, who before had been, or then were created Knights of the Bath The Earl of Kildare and Clanrickard signed a letter from the council, concerning the treaty of Breeme, at Queen Elizabeth's death, immediately after the Earl of Lincoln, and before all other inferior nobles. At the funerals of Ann, Queen to James I., and of James I., Queen Caroline and George II., the Irish nobility walked in the processions, preceding all English
That the public may see the utility of the corporate body of Heralds GEORGE III. in England, and know the records they possess, there is given, in the Appendix, letter M, a return of the Kings, Heralds, and Pursuivants of the College at Arms to Parliament, which presents the best possible idea of the institution, and the present state of the College, which are of the greatest importance to the state, a necessary appendage to loyalty, of the utmost consequence to the titled orders, to the gentry, and even to every man claiming honors, or even landed or other property. It were to be wished, that the prayer of the members should be complied with, in erecting them another College, near the royal residence and the houses of parliament, upon a larger scale, it being too small for the numbers occupying it. When the nobility resided in the city, and round the present College, they were where they ought to be. London then was not what it is now. From the Col
and Scotch peers of inferior rank. The Countesses of Kildare and Clanrickard were two of the sixteen assistants to the chief mourner at Queen Elizabeth's burial. That they have not walked in coronation procession formerly was owing, I presume, not because Ireland being deemed before Henry VIII's reign, only a dominion or lordship, not a kingdom, but for this reason, scarce ever any Irish peers were in this kingdom at such times; they were allowed it at the coronation of Geo. II. and His present Majesty. So far back as Elizabeth's reign, attempts had been made to consider Irish peers in England as commoners, but she, James I. and Charles I. highly resented such designs. The single instance, the rebel Lord Macquire being tried as a commoner during the civil war in the last century, can never be pleaded as a proper authority; in such times the sword, not law, decides every thing. The Sovereigns I have mentioned resisted every encroachment upon the dignity of the nobility of Ireland, as personal insults to themselves. Anstis, Garter, and all the other members of the College at Arms, were so sensible of what was justice, preremptorily refused to call over the English nobility, unless they were allowed to comply with the just order of precedency established by James I. and Charles I. As is mentioned above, the frequent creations of persons having no connexion with Ireland, and obtaining seats in the English House of Commons, were the great causes, in latter times, of the ignorance of many of those just rights and preeminencies to which the Irish peers are entitled. All this is done away, and the peers of our sister kingdom will now find their rank duly appreciated. The above particulars are chiefly taken from a book or pamphlet concerning, "The Question of the Precedency of the Peers "of Ireland, in England, fairly stated, in a Letter to an English Lord, by a Nobleman of "the other kingdom," published in 1761, and printed for J. Morgan in Pater-noster Row, and C. G. Scyffert in Pall Mall. I have omitted some circumstances which did not apply, and supplied some facts which evidently do.
GEORGE III. College to the Thames is bad, deplorably bad. The building, now about a century and an half old, will soon necessarily want rebuilding, which must be done by other means than by the purse of the members. The nation is incalculably rich, the sum necessary would be unworthy the notice of the most watchful guardian of the public purse. The cause being taken. up by a member of either House of Parliament, would reflect honor to his title or name, and he would find, I am convinced, a ready acquiescence, especially when he added, that no body of men proportioned to the small number of its members have produced more skilful persons in their profession, more loyal, learned, or respectable characters every way, nor to whom Britain is more obliged, or by whom she has been more honored. I may, I think, add too, what the modesty of the members of the College have not noticed, that when expenses have multiplied in so prodigious a degree since the salaries of the members were established so many reigns back, Parliament would make good whatever sums His Majesty would be most graciously pleased to adjudge, proportionable for the maintenance of the different Kings at Arms, Heralds, and Pursuivants. Every order of men are now paid according to the present value of the precious metals, why, then, should not these gentlemen? As they give up every other situation, they ought to receive, from their profession, sufficient to support them in the elegant offices they enjoy, independent of the little emolume ts which accidently fall to them. To excel in any profession, the mind ought to be at ease, which is incompatible with a narrow, a very circumscribed income. These are ideas not hastily taken up; they are the result of long observation, though unknown to any one previous to their appearance here. It is not a particular friendship for some of the College, so much as strict justice, that calls forth these observations; for I must, I cannot but most earnestly plead for an institution absolutely essential to a civilized, a polished nation, and for its members, whose incomes ought to be suitable to the greatness of the Monarch whom they serve, a Sovereign whose dominions are immensely large and proportionably rich; I cannot but plead for the members, who, copying the laudable example of their learned precursors, add to our libraries most valuable works, and adorn private life by the most respectable behaviour.
Having mentioned the present state of our English College, it will GEORGE III. not appear foreign to the subject to say a little of those of Scotland and Ireland. Since the union of the British kingdoms there have presided these Lord Lions, heads of the Scotch College of Heralds :
ALEXANDER ERSKINE, Esq.
-COCHERNE, Esq.-Appointed, May 5, 1726.
ALEXANDER DRUMMOND, Esq.-He died June 14, 1729.
Hon. ALEXANDER BRODIE, Esq.-He died March 9, 1754, and
JOHN CAMPBELL HOOK, Esq. a gentleman of great elegance of taste and respectability of character. After holding this office many years he was cut off by an extraordinary fate. He resided at Clarence-Place, Bristol. As he excelled in drawing, he was desirous, it was thought, of taking some of the charming views on the Avon, and St. Vincent'sRocks, near the Hot-Wells. For this purpose he left his home at ten o'clock on the morning of September 8, 1795, but not returning, it caused much anxiety. Two days afterwards his mangled corpse was discovered. It is supposed, that slipping, or the ground giving way, he fell from the precipice, and instantly perished. He left a family. His brother, Archibald Hooke, Esq. had a reversionary grant of his office, but dying before him, His Majesty gave it to
The Right Honorable ROBERT-AURIOL HAY-DRUMMOND, LL.D. Earl of Kinnoul, Viscount Dupplin, and Baron Hay of Kinfauns, all in the county of Perth, in the kingdom of Scotland, Baron Hay of Bedwarden in Herefordshire in England, and one of his Majesty's most Honorable Privy Council. His Lordship was appointed September 30, 1796. Lord Viscount Dupplin is put in remainder. The promotion of a Peer of both Scotland and England to this office throws a lustre upon the institution of the Herald's College, that neither kingdom ever before could boast. The more illustrious still for the virtues of the noble peer, and the ablities and integrity of this branch of the titled family of Hay, which, as heir general to William Drummond, Viscount Strathallan, has added to their surname that of Drummond. To them Scotland owes an incorruptible chancellor; England, a learned and most exemplary primate of York; and Britain, able ambassadors and negotiators. James Home, Esq. is Lion's deputy and principal clerk.
The Ulster Kings of Arms for Ireland having been given, in a former page, it will be sufficient here to observe, that upon the death of Gerard Fortescue, Esq., at Dublin, in November, 1786, His Majesty was pleased to nominate, for his successor, Sir Chichester Fortescue, Knight, the present Ulster, who, in 1800, was allowed a pension of £290: 19: 5, as a compensation for his losses, occasioned by the discontinuance of his emolument, in not attending the Parliament in Ireland, in consequence of the union of that kingdom with Britain.
GARTER, PRINCIPAL KING AT ARMS.
Geo. 11.-STEPHEN-MARTIN LEAKE, Esq. F. R. S.
Stephen Martin Leake, Esq. Garter principal King at Arms, descended from a family of the Martins, in the county of Devon, was son of Stephen Martin, an officer in the royal navy, in the reign of Queen Ann, and for some time senior captain, an elder brother of the Trinity House, in the commission of the peace for the counties of Middlesex, Essex, and Surrey, and a deputy-lieutenant of the Tower Hamlets. Captain Martin married Elizabeth, daughter and coheir of Captain Richard Hill of Yarmouth in Norfolk, by Mary his wife. Christian, the other daughter and coheir of Captain Hill, married Sir John Leake, Knight, Rearadmiral of Great-Britain, Admiral and Commander in Chief of the Fleet, and one of the Lords Commissioners of the Admiralty in the above reign. Sir John Leake and Captain Martin being united in the closest friendship by this matrimonial connexion, and still more by twenty years service together in the fleet, and Sir John having lost his lady and their issue, to evince his regard for his brother-in-law, adopted him his heir, who from attention and gratitude obtained His Majesty's sign manual, authorising him to assume the surname and bear the arms of Leake, in addition to his own. Captain Martin Leake, died January 19, 1735-6, in the seventieth year of his age, and Elizabeth, his wife, on September 14, 1723, aged fifty-seven: their remains were deposited in a vault in the cemetary of Stepney, in Middlesex, with those of Sir John Leake, and his family.
Stephen Martin Leake, Esq. Garter, their only surviving son, born April 5, 1702, being educated at the school of Mr. Michael Maittaire, a man well known in the learned world, was admitted of the Middle-Temple in 173 and in the same year was sworn a younger brother in the Trinity-House. He was appointed, in 1724, a deputy lieutenant of the