castles, or the grand front of Wentworth; but it seems to me to blend more magnificence and comfort, and to hold a more complete collection of interesting things, whether antiques, pictures, or manuscripts, than any seat I have visited. The entrance hall is the noblest I have ever seen; and the suite of apartments is the best arranged for show and comfort that can be imagined. With the doors open, you may look through a vista of eleven spacious rooms; and these of the most agreeable proportions, and adorned by the choicest productions of the pencil. Here you may admire the luxurious tints of Titian, the landscapes of Claude, the magnificence of Vandyke, and the soul-touching canvas of Raphael and Da Vinci. The painting by Vandyke of the Duke of Aremberg, which, large as life—and the duke on his courser—adorns the principal saloon, Lord Leicester considers the best picture in the world. He has refused twenty thousand pounds for it. Here is the ‘Leo X.’ by Raphael, —an engraving from which you will find in Roscoe's ‘Life of Leo;’ and a ‘Holy Family,’ by Raphael. A large ‘Joseph and Mary,’ with the infant Saviour, going into Egypt, by Rubens, I do not admire. It has that tawdry coloring which flames so along the walls of the Louvre, where his canvas is spread for several rods. As you pass from these rooms to the dining-room, you go through a gallery of surpassing grace and proportions, which is occupied by a collection of antique statues and busts, the completest in England, —a ‘Pythian Apollo,’ a ‘Venus’ with a veil, a ‘Meleager,’ a ‘Faun’ in most beautiful preservation, a ‘Neptune,’ a ‘Diana’ (for sending which from Rome the old Lord Leicester was thrown into prison) ,with busts of Seneca and Cornelius Sylla,—the latter said to be the only one that has come down to us. I have only mentioned some of the principal ones. And you dine with noble and almost colossal heads of Juno and of Lucius Verus looking from their high niches down upon you. You have heard much of the manuscripts at Holkham, which were arranged and put in order by the late Mr. Roscoe;1 this also is called the completest collection of the kind in England. Some of the illuminations are beautiful beyond imagination; and some of the manuscripts are invaluable. They relate to all branches of learning; and here I have found the handwriting of Sir Edward Coke, and have for hours pored over the crabbed page which bears the marks of his pen. In the library there are many works with his annotations. Lord Leicester2 is now old and infirm. He is a very ardent friend of
This text is part of:
Table of Contents:
Chapter 2 : Parentage and Family.—the father.
Chapter 3 : birth and early Education.— 1811 - 26 .
Chapter 4 : College Life.— September , 1826 , to September , 1830 .—age, 15 - 19 .
Chapter 5 : year after College.— September , 1830 , to September , 1831 .—Age, 19 - 20 .
Chapter 6 : Law School .— September , 1831 , to December , 1833 .—Age, 20 - 22 .
Chapter 7 : study in a law office .—Visit to Washington .— January , 1854 , to September , 1834 .—Age, 23 .
Chapter 8 : early professional life.— September , 1834 , to December , 1837 .—Age, 23 - 26 .
Chapter 9 : going to Europe .— December , 1837 .—Age, 26 .
Chapter 10 : the voyage and Arrival.— December , 1837 , to January , 1838 — age, 26 - 27 .
Chapter 11 : Paris .—its schools.— January and February , 1838 .—Age, 27 .
Chapter 12 : Paris .—Society and the courts.— March to May , 1838 .—Age, 27 .
Chapter 13 : England .— June , 1838 , to March , 1839 .—Age, 27 - 28 .
Chapter 14 : first weeks in London .— June and July , 1838 .—Age, 27 .
Chapter 15 : the Circuits .—Visits in England and Scotland .— August to October , 1838 .—age, 27 .
2 Thomas William Coke, Earl of Leicester, 1752-1842. He inherited the estates of his uncle, Thomas Coke, who was Earl of Leicester and a descendant of Sir Edward Coke. He represented the County of Norfolk in Parliament from 1776 to 1832, and was known as ‘the first Commoner of England.’ He was faithful to the Whig party. In 1837 he was created a peer, with the title of Earl of Leicester of Holkham. He was distinguished for his zeal in promoting an improved cultivation of the soil, and was reputed to be ‘the first farmer of England.’ Miss Martineau records the remarkable changes which he wrought on his estates,—‘History of England,’ Book VI: ch. XVI. His estate and mode of living are described in ‘Life of Lord Denman,’ Vol. I. pp. 237-239; also a visit to him when he was in his eighty-second year, Vol. II. pp. 5, 7. His widow married, in 1843. Edward Ellice, M. P. for Coventry, and died in 1844. Sumner wrote on an autograph of the Earl of Leicester, “The above autograph of the Earl Leicester, formerly known as Mr. Coke, and the mover of the recognition of the Independence of the United States, was given me by his daughter, Lady Elizabeth Stanhope, at Holkham, Nov., 1838.” In March, 1839, Lord Leicester, by his secretary, expressed himself as ‘most happy to see Mr. Sumner again at Holkham, whether alone or with any friend,’ and thanked him for Felton's Greek epigrams on Chantrey's woodcocks.
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