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the living of great Yarmouth, and, Fran- to him for tuition in the classics and sham's pecuniary circumstances being mathematics, from some of the most reexceedingly low, he submitted to a friend spectable families in Norwich. At that whether his attendance at Brooke might time he was the only person in the city not be deserving of something more than who could give able instruction in both the hospitable reception he had always these branches, and young men who were received'; adding that, if he could consider designed for Oxford or Cambridge, were his instructions worth a guinea, that sum chiefly indebied to his preparatory assist. would be very serviceable. His friend ance, before they were entered for the advised him to write to Dr. Cooper on universities. the subject; to which Fransham replied Fransham now opened a kind of school, that he had never written a letter to any from six o'clock till eight in the morning, person in his life, and was wholly unequal during summer, and during the same to the task; and requested him to indite hours in the evening of winter. This was such a letter for him as he might think a favorable arrangement for youth destined suitable. Fransham had written whole to become attorneys, chemists, or medical volumes upon various subjects, had dis- practitioners, or to enter on professions cussed the comparative nerits of poets, which required a knowledye of Latin and orators, and philosophers, and so early the exact sciences. Fransham's pecuniary as his eighteenth year had written an circumstances improved. He obtained epistle against the fear of death; yet he from fifteen to twenty pupils: a numbe: had reached his fiftieth without penning a far exceeding his expectations, and greatly single letter, and now selt himself wholly more than he wished for. He conceived i: unequal to the undertaking. The letter impossible that any teacher could do justice to Dr. Cooper was written for him, and to more than six or eight pupils at a time, Fransham copied it. In purport it and often expressed astonishment at pa: simply stated that, if the Dr. ihought rents who, for the sake of cheapness, Fransham's services to the family worthy sent their sons to schools where an imof more remuneration than his meat and mense number of boys prevented the bed, a guinea, or a less sum, would be master from giving them the proper highly acceptable. A new difficulty pre- instruction, and the lowness of the terms sented itself; for he who had never precluded the possibility of obtaining written a letter had never learned to fold proper assistants. Fransham commenced
He exercised his ingenuity in by charging one shilling per week, which doubling and redoubling this, until he sum he stipulated should be paid every was again obliged to resort 10 his friend Friday evening; and, if a pupil omitted to for assistance. The epistle was sent by the bring it duly, he sent the boy to procure it, post: day after day elapsed; no answer previously to the lesson of the evening. arrived; and Fransham expressed a de. This weekly arrangement was soon attermination that, as he had been so unsuc- tended with inconvenience and loss. Some cessful in his first, he would never venture of the pupils, with a higher relish for a second attempt at correspondence. At confectionery and fruit than fur Virgil length a letter arrived from Dr. Cooper, and Euclid, occasionally absented theminclosing, not the utmost of Fransham's selves for whole weeks together, and spent expectations, a guinea, but a five pound the weekly shillings entrusted to them by noie, with a kind apoloy for the delay their parents for Fransham. To prevent occasioned by the doctor's absence, warm these lapses, he altered his terms to a expressions of thanks for Fransham's quarterly payment of half-a-guinea; which, instructive attentions, of regret that the by the advice of Mr. Robinson, the friendly too great distance prevented a renewal of dictator of the letter to Dr. Cooper, he them, and with a generous and pressing afterwards raised to fourteen shillings. invitation to him to spend a few weeks This income enabled Fransham to prowith Dr. Cooper and his family, not as a cure the necessaries of life with a few of preceptor, but as a friend. The doctor's its comforts : and he reserved a small remittance was affluence to Fransham; it sum against exigences and old age. He enabled him for some time to support now added to his scanty stock of books, himself comfortably, and seems to have His chief affection was for old authors in been the means of finally disencumbering old editions; not that he loved antiquity him. His reputation for ability as for antiquity's sake, and venerated every teacher procured successive applications thing ancient because it was ancient; bui ho
considered that the old writers on elevated with his uncle, but with his father One subjects were more choice and close in morning Mr. Robinson went to enquire their language and reasoning; and that after the state of his health. On his old editions were more accurately executed. return home, as soon as he opened the
Besides giving instructions at his lodg- door, Fransham said 10 him, “ I find you ings in the way mentioned, he attended have lost your nephew," Mr. Robinson at the houses of gentlemen to whom the was much surprised, for his nephew was school-hours were not convenient, or who indeed dead, and he requested Fransham desired private tuition. About 1784 he to tell him how he could possibly have went lo reside with Mr. Robinson, with received the information. Franshain rewhom he continued during ten years, plied that about four o'clock that morning which, since the death of his friend he dreamed that his nephew called him Wright, were the happiest of his existence. by name, under the window of his bed
He continued to give instructious as room; and Fransham recollecting that his usual, and his income for some time was sister, on a similar occasion, had predicted from fifteen to eighteen shillings per week. the death of Mr. Chute, he thought he His vacant time was chiefly spent with his might in like manner conclude that his hospitable host, in reading portions of his young friend was no longer alive. manuscripts, discoursing on the pre-emi- Although Fransham had long before renence of wisdom and virtue, or relating sumed the use of the shoes and stockings, incidents of his former life. Here he was yet his singular appearance in a short happily prevented from having recourse green jacket, with large horn buttons, to eccentric expedients for support, and occasioned roguish school-boys to speak he also made some change in his amuse- of him as “horn-buttoned Jack.” In hot ments : instead of beating on a drum, weather he usually carried his jacket which had offended the neighbourhood, across his arm, and held his large fullhe resorted to a cane chair, which equally brimmed hat in his hand. One close and served to exercise his muscles, and his sultry day, while walking in this manner, skill in timing the ral-tat-too. His haut- he met an opulent manufacturer, a member boy, on which he had played delightfully, of the Society of Friends, who accosted he destroyed one day when afflicted with him with, “ Why, Johnny, thou lookest a violent head-ache, for which strong tea cool and comfortable, notwithstanding the was his usual remedy; and, not finding heat of the weather.” “ Most likely," fuel for his fire, be supplied the defect said Fransham, “but thou lookest very with bis instrument. To the hautboy hot and uncomfortable, and verily thou succeeded the bilbo-catch, or bilver-ketch. wilt continue to look so ; for thou hast not 'n whatever he undertook he determined courage enough to follow my example, to excel, and with this little toy he re- since thou darest not show thyself at solved to try what was the greatest nuinber Friends' Meeting-house with thy coat on of times he could catch the ball upon the thy arm, and thy hat in thy hand, although spiked end, without missing. By constant thou professest thyself to be indifferent to practice he attained to two hundred times the custom of this world.” To this the successively, but he found he could not Friend replied, “No, Johnny, no, decency exceed that number. He carried the toy forbids it; I like to have some regard to about with him in his pocket; and, while decency." “ Well,” rejoined Fransham, attending any of his pupils, if he found “ then do thou for the sake of decency them not quite ready for his instructions, continue to wear thy thick cloth coat, and he instantly took out his bilbo-catch, and great heavy hat, in a hot sultry day, and filled up the vacant minutes in trials to lodge I, for the sake of comfort, will continue to the ball on the small end two hundred and carry my jacket on my arm, and my hat one times. He could not attain that in my hand.” number, but he never desisted from his At his leisure, Fransham revised his efforts, nor paid attention to his pupil, manuscripts, by making such alterations till he had succeeded two hundred times and amendments as the maturity of judgsuccessively, which he generally accom- ment suggested, and labored on a copious plished on the first trial.
index to all the volumes, in addition to Abou! 1785, the nephew of Mr. Robin the smaller indexes attached to each. He son was attacked with a disorder which likewise diligently read the principal terminated in a consumption : this young books in his small, well-chosen library; man, düring his illness, did not reside and, in most of them, made annotations corrections, and additions, which exhibit, this gentleman, Fransham (incl erery proofs of his industry, classical taste, and Sunday, for nearly three years, and receive iogical precision.
ed from him very kind and endearing Fransham's acquirements enabled him attentions, besides enjoying the pleasures to assist many educated gentlemen, who of pure and elevated conversation. At desired to recover or extend their ac- Mr. Cooper's he had the unlimited use quaintance with the Greek and Latin of a large and excellent library, conlanguages. Many who were about to tako sisting of choice and valuable books in orders, and some who afterwards filled arts and sciences, classics, and general high stations in the church and the state, literature. On one of his weekly visits became his pupils. In the course of time lo Mr. Cooper, he met Dr. Parr, whom he had contrived to save a hundred he conversed with for a considerable part pounds, and his friends wished him 10 of the day, and ever afterwards spoke of deposit the money in a bank for security, as a most extraordinary man. His intiand upon interest. Upon such solicita- macy with Mr. Cooper was terminated by tions he used to observe that Virgil hau that gentleman's removal from Norwich. no faith in banks, as might be seen by his While he lived with Mr. Robinson, an third eclogue, where he says, “ Non bene adjoining out-house was converted into a ripæ creditor,” that is, “ It is not safe to stable. The apparent carelessness of the trust the bank.” At length, he placed it groom, who attended this stable in the in the hands of a reputable inerchant, who evening with a lighted candle, excited in from casualties soon afterwards became Fransham a fearful apprehension of fire, bankrupt. A few weeks before, Fran- which daily increased, and, by way of sham had, from some cause or other, with- security, he procured a ladder, which he drawn seventy-five pounds, and still there kept in his bed-room, ready to put out of remained twenty-five pounds, which, to a the window for his descent, the moment man in his situation, was a considerable he should receive an alarm. That he sum to lose. As soon as Fransham heard might, however, be the better able to of this event, he hastened home, and, escape with despatch and safety, he daily calling Mr. Robinson, burst forth with practised running up and down this ladder, joyful exclamations, telling him that he with a small box or trunk, made of such had saved seventy-five pounds. How so ? a size as just to contain his five inanuscript inquired his host. “Why,” said he, “the volumes, and which he constantly kept gentleman in whose hands I placed one upon bis window, ready for emergency. hundred pounds has failed, and only a In running up and down his ladder, he few weeks ago I withdrew seventy-five acquired a dexterity not to be excelled by pounds: how uncommonly fortunate !” any London lamp-lighter; and, as his “ Why yes,” said Mr. Robinson, “ fortu. hour of repeating the experiment was nate in having withdrawn seventy-five twelve o'clock at noon, he was frequently pounds, but unfortunate in leaving an object of amuseinent to the curious. iwenty-five, which will prove no gain to After acquiring these facilities, he recolyou, but a loss.” “ I tell you, sir,” replied lected, that from the soundness with wbich Fransham," it is a clear gain of seventy- he was accustomed to sleep, it was not five pounds. Here, look here,” said he, only possible, but probable, that he might pointing to his library, “ not one of these not awaken till the fire should reach his should I have had, if I had not withdrawn room, and thus prevent him from adopting the seventy-five pounds; these, therefore, his expedient. “For this evil there was 110 and all the money in my closet besides, remedy but retiring from the spot. He are so much clear gain, – seventy-five accordingly quitted Mr. Robinson, and pounds actually saved.” Fransham be- took a room or roonis in St. Michael's at lieved that, instead of having lost twenty- Plea. In a year or two afterwards, the five pounds, he had gained seventy-five. stable was converted to another use, and His philosophy converted the evils of life Fransham returned to his old lodgings, into blessings, made gains of losses, and where he continued till Mr. Robinson's pleasures of pains.
removal into a smaller house precluded About this period Fransham became the possibility of Fransham having a room acquainted with Mr. Cooper, a barrister with him. distinguished for great legal ability, biblio- Before Fransham's separation from Mr graphical knowledge, and kindness and Robinson, he had relinquished the amuseo hospitality to genius in adversity. With ment of the cup and ball, but not till he
had accomplished a fina. purpose with tion of visiting a friend, who resided at a that toy; it was to catch the ball so great few miles distance from Norwich; but, a number of times as seems incredible. when he got about a mile out of the city, “ Every man," said Fransham, " has some the horse took him into a pit by the roadgreat object which he wishes to accom- side, for the purpose of drinking : after plish, and why should not I have mine? the animal had taken his fill, and turned I will choose such a one as no mortal out of the pit, instead of pursuing the being ever yet chose, and which no one direction of his rider, he gave visible signs less than the gods would ever think of of inclination to return home.
“ Well,” attempting. I will get a bilbo-catch, and said Fransham, “ I thank you, my honest I will catch the ball, upon the spiked end, creature, for having carried me thus far; six hundred and sixty-six thousand six and I certainly have no right to make you hundred and sixty-six times !” It was go further, if it be against your inclination, for the attainment of this object that he and therefore we will e'en go back again." used so frequently to employ himself with Back, therefore, they went; and, after the
In order to keep a correct humane rider had clearly explained to the account of his progress, he put ten nuts surprised owner of the horse the cause of into his left hand pocket; at every hun- their sudden re-appearance, he paid him dred times he removed one of these nuts the fare for the entire day. to the pocket on the right; and, every time While Fransham continued with Mrs. that he found his left hand pocket empty, Jay, she considered him eccentric, but he deposited a nut in a bux, so that the always domestically inclined, fond of number of nuts deposited in the box, friendly society, and social conversation. indicated the number of thousands of He desired always to take his tea in comtimes he had succeeded. The achieve- pany with the family, although he had a ment of this object occupied a considerable separate tea equipage; and expressed portion of his leisure for three or four a desire to instruct her husband, and to years.
converse with hiin after the labors of the Fransham enjoyed uninterrupted good day were ended. It seems, however, he health, but he was of opinion that the could not prove that a knowledge of the value of health could only be estimated mysteries of the Platonic philosophy by a comparison with sickness; that hap. would in any manner increase the heat of piness was increased by contrasting it the oven, enlarge the profits of baking, or with misery; and that the cup of pleasure facilitate the drudgery of sending home received an additional zest from an occa- pies and puddings, and Mr. Jay prudently sional infusion of the bitters of pain. In declined initiation. With Mrs. Jay, who conformity, therefore, with this opinion, had more leisure, and on whom the manJe occasionally went to a confectioner's ner, and particularly the age of Fransham, shop, where he ate to repletion of the had produced strong impressions in his taris, cakes, fruits, and indigestibles, till favor, he conversed freely, and related to he produced a violent head-ache, that he her the principal occurrences of bis life. Inight have the felicity of curing this head- But she could never prevail upon him to ache by copious draughts of strong tea, allow the floor of his room to be wetted, and be thus reminded of the inestimable or the walls to be white-washed; it was value of health.
his, constant care, in his latter years, 10 On quitting Mr. Robinson, about 1800, avoid damps and drafts. He often spoke he weni to reside with Mr. Jay, a baker, to Mrs. Jay with great admiration of in St. Clement's parish. The unaffected female beauty. His temper was invariably simplicity of Fransham's manners, the even, and incapable of discomposure, exgentleness of his disposition, and the cept perchance he saw a short-tailed venerable aspect with which a pilgrimage horse; on which occasion he would coine of threescore years and ten had dignified home venting his rage and indignation him, procured for him the kindest atten- against “ Christian cruelties,” and “ Entions of Mrs. Jay. During his stay with glish barbarity.” her, he would not allow his hed to he About 1805 a distant female relation, made oftener than once a-week : it was named Smith, called upon him for the the nurse of idleness and luxury, and the purpose of acquainting him with her height of effeminacy, he said, for a man distressed situation, and soliciting his to have his bed made every day. Fran- advice and assistance. It iminediately sham once hired a horse, with the inten- occurred to him that he might alleviate
ner sorrows, if he were to hire two rooms, mcther with her infant. He had a dislike and take her for nis house-keeper. lle 10 very young children; be considerea accordingly engaged a chamber and garret them as interrupters of conversation, dism the yard adjoining the wool-hall, in the turbers of quiet, and frequent, though parish of St. George's Colegate; and, that innocent, offenders against decency and his pupils might not have to pass through good m the sleeping-room of his house-keeper, Towards the latter end of 1809, Franhe appropriated the chamber to his own sham was attacked with a cough, which use, and the garret to hers. This arrange- increased with the severity of winter. In ment, however, he made with reluctance; January, 1810, he was too enfeebled to for, from having lived in garrets almost take exercise, an:1, finally, kept his bed. all his life, he had a strong predilection in On le morning of the first of February favor of these upper stories. The easi- he requested his nurse to remove him from ness of his temper soon reconciled him his bed to his chair: he told her that he to the change.
should exceedingly dislike to be buried Franslam's diet was chiefly brčad and alive, and would therefore be obliged to butter, and tea; when the butter proved her, when she perceived him without bad, he threw all of it into his fire. His motion, tc shake'm well, then place him house-keeper once presumed to suggest by a large fire, witnin the scent of a hot to him, that perhaps it would be better to apple-pye; if these expedients did not give the butter away, than to burn it.- succeed, to ask some beautiful woman to « What,” said he, “ offer that to a fellow. sit by his side; and, if this experiment creature which I cannot eat myself! No, failed, then she might safely conclude him I should think myself a monster were 1 dead. In a few minutes after these directo be guilty of such an insult. If, how- tinns, his nurse, not hearing him cough, ever, you know of any useful purpose to a;:proached his chair and found he had which bad butter may be applied, 'I will expired. inform you the next time I happen to have lle was buried in the church-yard of any, and you shall have it, and be wel.. St. George's Colegate, Norwich, and the come.”
following inscription is on a stone to his Mrs. Smith continued with him till she memory: found a situation which seemed. more ad
66 M. S. vantageous; and, as he had no furthe occasion for two rooms, he removed, to Joan.is Fransham, qui plurimis annis in enjoy the felicity of a garret in Elm-hil hâc urbe Græcas Latinasque Litteras, lane. “ A garret,” he would say, "is !! necnon Mathematicam, studio exploravit, quietest room in the house; there are one
pra ceptis illustravit." rude noises over head; all is calm näil When Fransham died he was upwards serene; nothing is to be heard, but the of eighty. His physiognomy was highly delightful music of the rolling spheres.'” intelligent, and somewhat resembled that
About 1803 Fransham became acquaint- of Erasmus. In his latter years he sufed with Mr. Stark, an eminent dyer, father fered his grey hair to hang loose about his to Mr. Stark the landscape painter. At shoulders. When he walked the street, this gentleman's he was received with he wore his hal Jrawn uver his eyes, and frank hospitality, enjoyed the pleasure of constantly looked downwards, with his free conversation, and had the use of a hands must commonly behind him, except good English library. Mr. Stark likewise in very cold weather, when he usually placed two of his sons under his instruc- folded his arms in front of his breast. In tion, and from that time Fransham usually conversation on his favorite subjects, lanspent his Sunday evenings with this gen- guage, metaphysics, and mathematics, he tleman and his family. He had a great always appeared cheerful and animated. aversion to dogs. “ Dogs," he would lle was remarkable for industry, and say, “are noisy, mobbish, and vulgar, accustomed bimself to rise at five o'clock and therefore I dislike them.” If he in the morning during summer, and at entered a room where there was a dog, six in the winter. He ate very moderately he requested that he or the dog might be of animal food, and abstained from all permitted to retire. Next to the horse, strong liquors: he consequently enjoyed his favorite animals were cats: he would sound health, and retained the perfect use place them upon his knees, and talk and of his faculties to the last moments of life. fondle with ihem as affectionately as a Until within a few days of his death