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ALEXANDER DALRYMPLE, ESQ.
[WITH A PORTRAIT.] LEXANDER DALRYMPLE was his were published by his brother Hailes, near Edinburgh, the seat of his pendix to a Collection of Songs, in father Sir James Dalrymple, Bart. of 1796, and many more remain in manuHailes. His mocher, Lady Christian, script. daughter of the Earl of Hadington, Another brother, Hugh, died a Capfulfilled every duty of life with the tain in the Royal Navy, inuch respected highest estimation ; not only being in his profession. diitinguished for the courtesy of her John was repeatedly Lord Provost of manners, but for affection as a wife Edinburgh, and much esteemed for his and tenderness as a inother. She bore social virtues. fixteen children to Sir James Dalrymple, Alexander, at a very early period of whom the many years survived. his life, was taught GEOGRAPHY by his
Alexander, her only now surviving father, not learning by rote the names child, was the seventh son, and born on
of countries, capitals, and subordinate his father's forty-fifth birth-day.
towns, but by Sir James thewing his
son the Maps, and pointing out those The eldest son, Sir David Dalrymple, distinctions of form and situation, which Bart. became one of the Lords of Sel- were likely to make impression on a fion, by the title of Lord Hailes, and is child's attention, and fix that impression not only well known in the literary on his memory ; interesting the child, world by his many publications, but ftill the more, by narratives of his own was highly respected in his profession as
travels, though they had not been ex. a Judge, and in his character as a man
tended beyond EUROPE. and a Christian.
At the breaking out of the rebellion, James Dalrymple was brought up in in 1745, Sir James Dalrymple, debili the army, in which he rose to the rank tated in constitution by ill health, car. of Lieutenant-Colonel ; when he quit. ried his female and young family to ted that profession to enjoy social retire. Berwick; his eldest lon being then at ment with the wife of his affection, Utrecht pursuing his studies, and two amongst his relations : he was highly others from home in the service of their respected and etteemed by his friends, King and country. amongst whom he had the honour of Alexander well remembers to have ranking the present Earl St. Vincent seen Sir John Cope on horseback, in a and Viscount Howe. His literary en blue surtout coat, come over the dowments were great, but he never bridge into the town from the Englisk. published any thing during his life. fide. Some much-admired poetical pieces of After the prosperous turn of affairs,
Sir James Dalrymple returned home merchants' books not entering into their with his family ; and from thence wise noddles, some demur was made to Alexander went back to Hadington Mr. Kinross's certificate of this part of School, where he had been a short time Alexander's education not being ex. before the rebellion drove his father to pressed in terms fufficiently direct ; Berwick.
however, this was not in lifted on. Alexander received his education On the ift of November 1752, Alexunder Mr. David Young, at a time ander Dalrymple was appointed a Wriwhen Mr. Young's school, at Hading- ter in the East India Company's ferton, was in high reputation ; but as he vice, and, on the 8th of November, left school before he was fourteen years stationed on the Madras eftablishment. of age, and never was at the University, Alderman Baker disqualified early the his scholastic endowments were very next year; so that it was by a very limited. At school he had the credit accidental contingence that Alexander of being a good scholar; and, after he Dalrymple went to India, his family left school, his eldest brother was wont having no-India connexions ; more to make him translate, off hand, some particularly as he wanted a few months of the Odes of Horace; so that he was, of fixteen years of age, which was the for his years, a tolerable proficient in age required for a Writer to be : and Latin : but going abroadentirely his his mother Lady Christian Itrongly own master, before he was sixteen years objected to his father's son even tacitly of age, he neglected his Latin ; and asenting to countenance what was un. has never found so much use for it true ; and she was not quite satisfied as to induce him to take any pains to with being assured that it was with recover it.
Alderman Baker's concurrence and Sir James Dalrymple died in 1750; approbation; it being urged, that the and the Hon. General St. Clair having spirit of the regulation was to prevent married Sir James's fifter, a very sensible infants being introduced into the ferand accomplished woman (thé relict of vice as Writers, and not to preclude a Sir John Baird, Bart.), in 1752, from person for the difference of a few his intimacy with Alderman Baker, months in age. This is the only then Chairman of the East India Com- instance in which Alexander Dalrympany, General St. Clair goé Mr. Baker's ple is conscious of having been accerpromise to appoint his nephew, Alex. lary to cheating the Company, if it can ander Dalrymple, a Writer in the Com- be so termed. pany's fe vice; Alexander having con. Mr. James Baird, then of Downingceived a Strong desire of going to the street, and afterwards of Soho-square, Eatt Indies, by reading Nieuhoff's Vcy- an army-agent, carried Alexander Dalages, and a novel of that time, called rymple one day to Chelsea, where Mr. Joe Tbomson.
Baird visiting Sir John Trelawney, Alexander Dalrymple left Scotland then a very old man, they were invited in the spring of 1752, with his brother to stay dinner. Alexander having Sir David, who affectionately accom- drank a glass or two of wine passed the panied him to London. He was put bottle. This the old man took notice to Mr. Kinross's academy, at Four- of, and said, to this effect : “ Young Tree-Hill, near Endfield, for some man, I am very glad to see that; nronths antecedent to his appointment always judge for yourself, and you in the Company's service he was will do right ; few men act wrong of obliged to Mr. Kinro's for his great their own inclination, but by follow. kindness and attention to him, and ing example, and wanting the resoreceived much good inftruétion for Jution to judge for themselves, when his conduct through life ; by which example ough to be followed, and he greatly profited': but Alexander when not.” This advice falling in a was too short a time at that academy proper soil took root, and was never to learn much of what was the object forgotten. of sending him there; viz. writing and. Alexander, about the middle of Demerchants' accounts; which are, at least cember, embarked at Gravelend on were at that time, the only qualifications board the Suffolk Indiaman, comthe Eat India Company thought re. manded by Captain William Wilson ! quilte in their servants: the absurdity the ship was on fire the fame night in of supposing a boy of fixteen from an the gun-room, but it was extinguished academy conpetent to keep a set of without any confiderable injury
Captain Wilson having three Supra- notice of by persons in superior ftaCargoes to China going passengers, tions. However, he fortunately did was unwilling to take Alexander Dal- not long remain in this situation, but rymple as a passenger : however, he was removed into the Secretary's office : , was prevailed on to give him a pallage, and the late Lord Pigot, being appointat the instance of Mr. Richard Lewin, ed to succeed Governor Saunders, cane, then his Chief Mate, and afterwards his down from Vizagapatam to Madras in fucceffor in the command of the Suffolk ; October 1754. Alexander Dairymple who being intimate with Mr. Wilson, had been very particularly, recom. afterwards Sir Thomas Wilson, a par- mended to his protection by Lord ticular friend of General St. Clair, was Pigot's brother, the late Admiral Pigot, by him induced to obtain Captain who was intimate in General St. Clair's Wilson to grant Alexander Dalrymple family. Lord Pigot perceiving that a passage, although he could not give Alexander wrote a very bad hand, him any cabin ; which was no inconve- instructed bim to hold his pen, and nience, as, by the kindness of Mr. write with ease to himlelf. From this Lewin, he had at all times the use of instruction he benefited more, in a few his cabin.
days, than by any thing he had been The Suffolk failed from the Downs taught at school; and speedily attained the 26th December 1752, and, after to write a very good and tuent hand; staying a fortnigbt at the Cape of Good and though not !0 majterly as Lord Hope, arrived at Madras on the uth Pigot's, lo much like his ordinary writ. of May--a day tince memorable by the ing, that he often mistook it for his death of two great men to whom their own. To this instruction the Public country owed much-William Pitt, are in some measure indebted for what. Earl of Chatham ! and George Lord ever excellence there is in the writing Pigot ! Captain Wilson acted with all to the Maps and Charts publiihed by the kindneis of a parent to Alexander Alexander Dalrymple. Dalrymple, not only during the pallage In this early period of his life, Mr. to Madras, but during the remainder Orme, the distinguished Hittorian, then of his life. For a month, while the a Member of Council and Accountant, , thip remained at Madras, Captain Wil fhewed him great civility, and wanted fon kept him to live in his house ; to have had him appointed his Sub. which was the more fortunate to Alex. Accountant; alledging, that the ig110ander Dalrymple, as he was an entire rance he protessed of accounts was not stranger to every body at Madras, an objection, as he would soon make having only a letter of mere compli himself maiter of thein, under his tuimentary introduction to the Governor, tion ; which he kindly offered. This from Lord Northelk, who had been in favourable opinion of Mr. Orme arote India, but was not personally ac from Alexander Dalrymple having quainted with Mr. Saunders, the Go. written a note to him, as Commiffary, vernor; the other persons to whom concerning some Officer's affairs of Alexander Dalrymple had carried let which he had the management. The ters being either dead or absent, ex Sub Accountant was one of the most cept one, who was so abandoned to honourable stations ; and by the Comdrunkenness, that the very associating pany's regulations, after balancing a with him would have brought a stigma certain number of sets of books, the upon any youth, had his bad example person occupying that station was enproduced no effect : and of this danger titled to any employment at the Sub. Alexander Dalrymple was kindly cau ordinates that became vacant, not octioned by Mr. Charles Bourchier who cupied by a Member of Council. Alwas then Secretary, and afterwards Go- phough Mr. Orme's friendly intentions vernor, of Madras.
did not take place, yet he ever after Alexander Dalrymple at that time shewed him countenance, and gave him writing a very bad band, was not, at the free use of his valuable library ; first, employed in the Secretary's Ofice, where books were so rare, and it to which is the only school where the ge well chosen, this was an inestimable neral knowledge of the Company's favour. It was the desire to read a affairs can be learnt, but was put un. book in this library that induced Alexder the Storekeeper i where he could ander Dalrymple to learn French; hav. neither learn any thing worth learning, ing been such an Anti-Gallican when a nor was he in the way of being taken boy, that althougli compelled to go to a
French school in Edinburgh, before he thips, incapable of defending them. lett Scotland, he would not learn French! selves againit fo fuperior a force. M. but finding Bouvet's Voyage in Mr. Soupire produced his authority to comOrme's library, he applied himself to mand in the absence of General Lally the book without a matter, and, with and Count D'Apsché, and ordered him the assistance of a dictionary, then to pursue his voyage ; declaring, that translated it. Mr. Orme continued he did not queition their being merhis friendship to Alexander Dalrymple chant thips, but, as it appeared they during the remainder of his life. were determined to defend themselves
Whilst Alexander Dalrymple was in gallantly, an accidental shot might dira the Secretary's ofice, he received the able his ship, and entail fatal dis. countenance of Mr. Dupré, the Secre. appointment on the expedition to ludia, tary, who afterwards applied to have of which that thip made a part, and hin appointed his Deputy, although that the prize of some merchant thips not then in his office, and would have was of no consequence to the King of resigned the Secretaryship in his favour France. in 1759, when Alexander Dalrymple This conveys a forcible lesson against went on his Eastern voyage.
despondency, as the escape of the InDuring the time Alexander Dalıym. diamen arose entirely from Captain ple was in the office of Deputy Secre Wilson's good conduct. tary, examining the old records, to When Commodore Wilson arrived qualify himfelf, by the knowledge of at Madras, in the Pitt, in September them, to fill the office of Secretary, 1758, he had on board Sir William which he was in succession to expect, (then Colonel) Draper, and part of his he found the commerce of the Eastern regiment. The Pitt was destined for Islands was an object of great confideration China. Commodore Willon, whose with the Company, and he was inspired fagacity and maritime knowledge was with an earneit desire to recover that equal to his courage, had reflected durimportant object for this country, ing the course of his voyage from Eng.
A favourable opportunity offered for land, in what manner bis paljage to putting this into train ; his old friend China could be attained at that teafon ; Captain Wilson having been appointed and it occurred to him, that the same by the East India Company Commo. principle by which mips went to the dore of all their Ships and Vessels, and Malabar Coast and Perlia from Madras Commander of the Pitt, of so guns, in the South Wett monsoon, was appli. for his good and gallant conduct, ar cable in a paljage to Chini, viz. by rived in September 1758.
crofing the line and taking advantage The circumstance which obtained of the contrary monsoons that prevail at this distinguished mark of the Com. ihe same time in North and South latitudes. pany's favour deserves to be comme. Thus, as the ships from Madras Itand morated. The Suffolk, Captain Wil. to the South Eait with the South West fon, as senior Officer Commodore ; winds, till they get into the South East
Houghton, Captain Walpole ; and trade in South'latitude, and then it and mew Godolphin, Captain Hutchinson ; Wettward, till they are to windward of
were, on their passage home to Eng. their intended port, when they cross land from China, encountered by a the Line again into North latitude: French ship of the line and a large fo Commodore Wilson reasoned, that frigate off the Cape of Good Hope the North West winds would, in South in the night, and exchanged some shot: latitude, carry him far enough Eait. Captain Wilson endeavoured to get ward to make the North Eait wind a away; but finding the French ships fair wind to China. Sir William Dra. outsailed the Indiamen, in the morning per countenancing his opinion, Comhe made the signal for the line, and bore modore Wilson, on his arrival at Madown upon the French. M. de Sou. dras, mentioned the subject to Alexpire, second in command to General ander Dalrymple, and alked bis senti. Lally, was on board the ship of the ments; which entirely concurring line. On seeing the Englih bear down, with his own, and being confirmed he desired the French Captain to pur- by reference to Saris, &c. who had persue his
voyage without engaging fur. formed the most essential part of the ther. The Captain remonftrated, quel voyage, though with a different ob. tiuning his authority to interfere, and je&t , Commodore Wilson was thereby declaring they were but merchant induced to propose it to Governor