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The Duke was pleased to attend a second time at the place and hour appointed, and walked five or six minutes in the Abbey before he saw any body that he suspected; he then saw the same person whom he had seen before in Hydepark. He came in with a good-looking man, who had the appearance of a substantial tradesman, and they went about looking on the monuments. After some time the stranger went into the choir, and the person whom he had seen before turned back and came iowards the Duke. The Duke then asked him, if he had any thing to say to him, or any commands for him? and he replied, No, my Lord, I have not: the Duke then said, Sure you have; but he replied again with the same words, No, iny Lord. The Duke then left him, and as he continued to walk up and down one side of the aisle, his Grace walked up and down the other, to give him a little more time, but he did not speak. The Duke had then several persons disguised in the Abbey, who were to have taken up the person he was to meet, if the signal had been given; but the Duke did not give it, because, though he was very sure the person he had spoken to was the same he had seen in the Park, yet he chose rather to run a farther risk himself, than to take up an innocent man.
Very soon after this his Grace received a third letter, as follows:
“ To his Grace the Duke of Marlborough. “ MY LORD, “I am fully convinced you had a companion on Sunday; 1 interpret it as owing to the weakness of human nature; but such proceeding is far from being ingenuous, and may pro, duce bad effects, whilst it is impossible to answer the end proposed: you will see me again soon, as it were by accident, and may easily find where I go to, in consequence of which, by being sent to, I shall wait on your Grace; but expect to be quite alone, and to converse in whispers; you will likewise give your honour upon meeting, that no part of the conversation shall transpire; these and the former ternis complied with, ensure your safety: my revenge in case of non-compliance, (or any scheme to expose me) will be slower, but not less sure; and strong suspicion, the utmost that can possibly ensue upon it, while the chances would be ten-fold against you. You will possibly be in doubt after the meeting, but it is quite necessary the outside should be & mask to the in. The family of the Bloods is not extinct, though they are not in my scheme."
This letter, by the expression “ You will see me again soon, as it were by accident," seems to intimate, that the. writer had not only seen the Duke, but that the Duke had seen the writer, so as to know and remember him; for how else could his Grace see him as it were by accident, so as to note him, and find out whither he went?
His Grace, however, did not see either the person he had seen before, or any other person, whom he had the least reason to suppose to be the writer of the letters ; but about two months afterwards he received the following letter, as from another hand.
“ To his Grace the Duke of Marlborough.
“MAY IT PLEASE YOUR GRACE, “ I have reason to believe that the son of one Barnard, a surveyor in Abingdon Buildings, Westminster, is acquainted with some secrets that nearly concern your safety; his father is now out of town, which will give you an opportunity of questioning him more privately. It would be useless to your Grace, as well as dangerous to me, to appear more publicly in this affair.
“ Your sincere friend,
“ He frequently goes to Storey's-gate coffee-house.”
About ten days after the receipt of this letter, the Duke sent a person, whose name is Merrick, to Storey's-gate coffee-house, to tell Mr. Barnard, that the Duke desired to speak with him. The message was delivered to Mr. Barnard on Tuesday the 25th of April in the evening, and he sent word by the messenger, Mr. Merrick, that he would wait upon his Grace on the Thursday morning following, at half an hour after ten.
On Thursday morning, at the time appointed, he went, and the Duke, who instantly knew him to be the person he had seen before in the Park and the Abbey, took him into a room, and shut the door. He then asked him, as he had done at their former meetings, whether he had any thing to say to him ? and he said he had nothing to say. The Duke then recapitulated all the letters, beginning with the first, and Barnard listened with attention and surprise, but without any appearance of fear. The Duke observed, that it seemed to
him a strange thing to find such letters as these written with the correctness of a scholar; to which Barnard replied, that a man might be very learned and very poor: to which he might have added, that he might be very daring and very wicked. The Duke then shewed him the 4th letter, in which his name was mentioned ; upon which Barnard said, “ It is very odd; my father was then out of town." This speech the Duke thought remarkable, because though Barnard said his father was then out of town, the letter was without a date. The Duke then told him, that if he was innocent, it behoved him, more than his Grace, to discover the writer of the letters, especially the last; upon which he gave the Duke a smile, and went away.
How these circumstances came to the knowledge of Mr. Fielding, does not appear; but Fielding soon fter took Mr. Barnard into custody, and he was tried the last sessions at the Old Bailey for sending a threatening letter, contrary to the statute.
In the account of the trial, as it is printed in the Sessions Paper, there is no mention of any evidence to prove the letters to be Mr. Barnard's hand-writing, nor indeed any evidence to prove that he was the writer of them; but bis being in Hyde-park and in the Abbey at the times when the writers of the first and second letters appointed the Duke to meet him there.
It seems, however, to be incumbent upon Mr. Barnard, to shew how he came to be at those places just at those times; and this he has done in a very particular. manner, supported by very credible testimony.
Thursday, May 11, 1758, at the Old Bailey Sessions, the remarkable trial of young Mr. Barnard, for writing the letters, above alluded to, to the Duke of Marlborough, came on. What relates to the charge against him has already been narrated. What he urged in his defence was as follows: he proved that on the Sunday morning mentioned in the first letter to the Duke, his father ordered him to go to Kensington to the solicitor of the turnpike to know wbether the treasurer of the turnpike had not paid some money for his use: that, in consequence of this order he did go to Kensington, saw the solicitor of the turnpike there, dined afterwards with his uncle, at his house at Kensington, in company with several other persons, to whom he related the particular of the Duke's coming up to him in Hyde-park,
and asking if he had any thing to say to him. This is attested by Barnard the father, who gave him orders to go to Kene sington, by the person to whom he went, by his uncle with whom he dined, and several others that were at the same
As to his being in the Abbey, he proved that Mr. James Greenwood, a relation, a brewer at Deptford, being at breakfast with him, on the Sunday mentioned in the second letter, at his father's, where he had lain the night before, desired him to get himself dressed, and go with him into the Park: that he did not comply till after much solicitation, and that when they came to the end of Henry the VIIth's chapel, Mr. Barnard would have gone into the Park, without going through the Abbey, if Mr. Greenwood bad not insisted on the contrary, as he had never seen Gen. Hargrave's monument. This Mr. Greenwood was that good-looking man whom the Duke says he saw come into the Abbey with Mr. Barnard. As Barnard had told Greenwood the strange circumstance of the Duke's speaking to him in the Park, Greenwood, as soon as he saw the Duke, whom he knew, told Barnard who he was: for Barnard being very nearsighted had not seen him, and if he had, would not have known him. Mr. Greenwood observing the Duke to come up to him, and pass him several times, supposed he had a mind to speak to Mr. Barnard, but would not do it till he was alone, and for that reason he left him and went into the choir. These facts are attested by Mr. Greenwood, the only person to whom they could be known, and it should be observed, that Mr. Barnard could not appoint a meeting on these days, in consequence of his having business which at those times would call him to the places mentioned, because he did not know of his going either to the Park or the Abbey till the very day on which he went.
Mr. Barnard also proved, by unexceptionable witnesses, that he mentioned the strange circunstances of the Duke's meeting and speaking to him both in the Park, and in the Abbey, among his friends and acquaintance, openly on the day when they happened, and very frequently afterwards : that his father is established in a very reputable and profitable business, in which his son is likely to succeed him, being extremely capable of the employment, and very diligent in it. It is also proved by several persons of the highest character, particularly Dr. Markham, the present worthy master of Westminster school, that he is in plentiful circumstances, very far from being in any exigence which might urge him to obtain money at such a risk, not only of
his reputation but his life; that his conduct has been always irreproachable, and his fidelity often tried.
The fourth letter still remains an inscrutable mystery. No man could imagine from what Mr. Barnard had said from time to time, concerning the Duke's behaviour to him, that he was acquainted with some secrets which nearly concerned his Grace's safety, and why any person who might hear that the Duke had received threatening letters, without knowing from whom, should mention Mr. Barnard, cannot easily be guessed. The only conjecture that seems probable, if on such an occasion a conjecture may be allowed, is that some officious person, who had received some slight information of the Duke's business at the Abbey, and observed him speak to Mr. Barnard, might watch him home, and taking for granted that if he should, in consequence of this information, be detected in any evil design, the informer whenever he should think fit to reveal himself, would be rewarded, might be induced to make the information at a venture, and conceal himself till the event should be known.
As to the Duke he appears to have acted with the utmost tenderness and generosity through the whole affair; to have undertaken the prosecution purely from public principles, and to have been more desirous that the prisoner should appear innocent than guilty.
XXVIII. On the Unlikeness of Shakespeare's Busts.
MR. URBAN, Stratford-upon-Avon, May 30, 1759. A DOUBT of a new kind, and not unworthy of notice, has arisen among some, whether the old monumental bus& of Shakespeare, in the collegiate church of Stratford-uponAvon, Warwickshire, had any resemblance of the bard: but I find not this doubt to have taken date before the public regard shewn to his memory, by erecting for him the curious cenotaph in Westminster Abbey: the statue in that honorary monument is really in a noble attitude, and excites an awful adiniration in the beholder; the face is venerable, and well expresses that intenseness of serious thought, which the Poet must be supposed to have sometimes had.
The face on the Stratford monument bears very little, if any resemblance, to that at Westminster; the air of it is