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contempt for the acquirement of property. He was plain and abstemious in his mode of living; though, for a short period, one of his whimsies was to be particularly singular in the mode in which he would have his animal food prepared for use. But these singularities, with other trifling eccentricities, were soon banished from his mind. In person he was robust, wellformed, and very healthy. He was fond of early rising, walking, and indulging in all the rustic and athletic sports which are so prevalent in the north. For many years of the early periods of his life he made it an invariable practice of visiting, every morning, a farm-house at Elswick, a small village about two miles distant from Newcastle, and indulged himself in partaking of hot rye cake and buttcj~milk, a repast which was regularly prepared by Goody Coxen, the respectable hostess of the cottage, for such of the Newcastle pedestrians who were inclined to enjoy a morning walk before the business of the day commenced. It was his habit to indulge in and inure himself to combat hardships of every description. At one time, even in the middle of the severest winter, he would sleep with his bed-room windows open; and it frequently occurred, when he awoke in the morning, that snow in quantity was to be found on his bed-clothes. He was particularly fond of smoking. It was his almost invariable practice, in the middle period of his life, to meet a few confidential friends in the evening at a well-known rendezvous for the politicians of Newcastle, kept by a Mr. Swarley in the Groat Market. This Boniface, for the comfort and accommodation of his evening guests, fitted up and set apart for their disputation a large room in his public-house, which was ironically named by the plebeians of the town the House of Lards. In this nightly convocation of talents and conviviality, our artist, furnished with his pipe and jug of ale, spent many a pleasant evening in the circle of his friends, either in discussing the politics of the day, or in descanting on the local circumstances of the town.
Bewick was highly delighted with the talents of Cunnin'rham, the pastoral poet, who resided many years in Newcastle.
The company of this rival of Shenstone was always a great intellectual treat to the youngster of Cherry Burn, who took a very striking likeness in pencil of his favourite poet, which it is believed is the only one ever taken of Cunningham. This portrait is at present in the possession of the Rev. Isaac Jackman of the Philanthropic Society; and was shown to Mr. Bewick during his short residence in London in the autumn of 1828, at the recollection of which the good old man appeared to receive infinite pleasure. Many portraits of our artist have been engraved and published; but the only fulllength painting of this extraordinary genius was executed by Mr. Ramsay, whose interesting painting of the Trial of King Charles formed a distinguished feature in the Jate exhibition of the British Gallery in Pall-mall. Mr. Ramsay's delineation of Bewick is not only a most striking representation of his features, but conveys to the mind the most perfect idea of the very gait and manner of the man. Within a few years it was proposed by a select number of his friends, who had lono- been the warm admirers of the talents of our artist in
Newcastle, that a bust should be executed of him, as a lasting memorial of the high regard they entertained for his genius. A fund for this purpose was immediately produced, and Mr. Baily, the celebrated sculptor, was employed to carry the well-meant intentions of those patrons of genius and art into execution. The bust was executed with great fidelity and taste, and was presented by the gentlemen, at whose instance it was accomplished, to the Council and Members of the Philosophical Society of Newcastle-upon-Tyne, where it now occupies a niche in the most prominent part of the library of that learned body.
An anecdote is told of our artist, that a tradesman of Newcastle whom he had for many years employed to serve him with coals, had at last, Bewick discovered, begun to defraud him in the measure of the article he had so long furnished for his domestic comfort, on which occasion he sent a strong letter of rebuke to this rogue in grain, for his ingratitude and want of common honesty. At the bottom of his epistle ho sketched with his pen a small drawing, in which was introduced the figure of a man in a coal-cart, accompanied by the representation of the devil close by his side, who is seen stopping the vehicle immediately under a gallows, beneath which is written these emphatic words: — the end and punishment of all dishonest men! This well-timed satire so affected the nervous system of the poor delinquent, that he immediately confessed his guilt to his benefactor, and on his knees implored his pardon. This small sketch was afterwards engraved as a tailpiece, which may be seen in the first volume of his "British Birds."
Mr. Bewick was a man of warm attachments, particularly to the various branches of his family. It is known that, during his apprenticeship, he seldom failed to visit his parents once a week at Cherry Burn, distant about fourteen miles from Newcastle; and when the Tyne was so swelled by rain and land floods, that he could not get across, it was his practice to shout over to them, and having made his inquiries after the state of their health, he returned home.
In 1825, in a letter from Bewick to an old crony of his in London, after describing with a kind of enthusiastic pleasure the domestic comforts he daily enjoyed, he says : — "I might fill you a sheet in dwelling on the merits of my young folks, without being a bit afraid of any remarks that might be made upon me, such as 'look at the old fool, he thinks there is nobody has sic bairns as he has.' In short, my son and three daughters do every thing in their power to make their parents happy."
He was naturally of the most persevering and industrious habits. The number of blocks he has engraved is almost inconceivable. At his bench he worked and whistled with the most perfect good-humour from morn to night, and ever and anon thought the day too short for the extension of his labours. He did not mix much with the world, for he possessed a singular and most independent mind. He luxuriated in the bosom of his family, and no pleasures he could enjoy in the latter stage of his life were equal, in his opinion, to the sterling comforts of his cnen Jlre-side. He died as he lived, an upright and truly honest man; and breathed his last moments, after a short illness, in the midst of his affectionate and disconsolate offspring, at his residence near the Windmill Hills, Gateshead, on Saturday, the 8th of November, 1828, in the 76th year of his age.
Much more might be said of this distinguished artist; but it is known that he had, to fill up his vacant time during the winter evenings of the two last years of his life, devoted his attention to writing a memoir of himself. This work, it-is said, will extend to two 4to. volumes, and is to be accompanied by various portraits of his early and particular friends, and many other engravings, which are to be executed on wood. The work, it is presumed, will be given to the public under the sanction and superintendence of his family. His only son, Mr. R. E. Bewick, has been bred to the profession his father so successfully pursued, and possesses eminent talents as an engraver on wood.
Sir JAMES ATHOL WOOD, Knight,
REAR-ADMIRAL OF THE BLUE, AND A COMPANION OF THE MOST HONOURABLE MILITARY ORDER OF THE BATH.
Sir James was descended from the ancient family of Wood, of Largo, in Fifeshire. He was the third son of the late Alexander Wood, of Perth, Esq., and was brother of the late Sir Mark Wood, Bart., Member for Gatton, and of the late Major-General Sir George Wood, K.C.B.
He entered the naval service at an early nge, and during the war with our American colonies was engaged in a great variety of service, both at sea and on shore, particularly at the defence of Quebec, in 1776; the reduction of Charlestown, in 1780 ; and in the memorable battle between Rodney and de Grasse, April 12. 1782; on which glorious occasion he was second Lieutenant of the Anson, 64, commanded by Captain Blair, with whom he had formerly served in the Princess Royal, a second rate, bearing the flag of Vice-Admiral Byron.*
During the ensuing peace, Mr. Wood visited the Continent, and resided for about three years in the south of France. He afterwards went to the East Indies, and on his return explored the greater portion of the western coast of Africa.f
• Captain Blair was among the slain.
f Mr. Wood's valuable communications to Mr. Arrowsmith, respecting such parts of Africa as had been previously unknown, were fully acknowledged by that able geographer.
VOL. XIT. R