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Kay's Originals Vol. 2


BIOGRAPHICAL SKETCHES. 441 consequence of which many were injured, and Mr. Smith, banker in Edinburgh, unfortunately killed. Lord Eldin died a bachelor; and, old maid-like, he had formed such an attachment to cats, that his domestic establishment could always boast of at least half-a-dozen feline indwellers. When called on by a client, he was generally found seated in his study, with a favourite Tom elevated on his shoulder, and purring about his ears.' Throughout the whole of his career as a barrister Mr. Clerk took infinite delight in ridiculing the bench. To one amiable individual, now no more, he was invariably rude ; and whilst his lordship acted as an ordinary in the Outer- House, he suffered a species of torture that required great natural sweetness and kindness of disposition to endure. Lord Craigie, the person alluded to, being himself a most excellent feudal lawyer, highly respected the talents of Mr. Clerk ; and although many occasions occurred, which a man of vindictive feeling would eagerly have seized on, to punish his tormentor, still he uniformly passed them over. Clerk, however, did not come off so well with the Inner-House. On one occasion: having used rather strong language towards one of the bench, the presiding judge most properly called him to order, and required him instantly to make a suitable apology to the venerable and excellent individual whom he had insulted. It was a bitter pill to swallow j but, as there was no alternative, the discomfited lawyer-who did not aspire to the honour of judicial martyrdom -was compelled to succumb. Mr. Clerk was of a convivial disposition, and the contrast between the crabbed lawyer and the good-natured Zlon vivant was great. Being a member of the Bannatyne Club, he invariably attended the anniversary dinner ; and no one could enjoy with greater zest the good things which Mr. Barry unsparingly lavished on such occasions. Until within a year or two of his death, Sir Walter Scott, as president, uniformly took the chair ; and it is not surprising that, in the witchery of his company, libations to Bacchus should have been more frequent than perhaps was beneficial to the health of the assembled members. At the termination of one of these feasts, where wit and wine contended for the mastery, the excited judge (for Mr. Clerk had then been raised to the bench), on the way to his carriage, tumbled down stairs, and, miserabile &tu, broke his nose-an accident which compelled him to confine himself to the house for a day or two. He re-appeared, however, with a large patch on his olfactory member, which gave a most ludicrous expression to his face. On some It is said he was so much disturbed, when pondering over a very long law paper 01: one occasion, by a number of these animals making a hideous noise in the green at the back of his house, that he rose up, and throwing open the window, endeavoured viva voce, to quell the disturbance. His efforts, however, were to little purpose ; but before adopting more effectual measures, he generously resolved to give the four-footed caterwaulem the full benefit of law as provided in the case of tumultuous bipeds. The riot act was accordingly read by his lordship with all due form and deliberation ; but even this solemn intimation waa disregarded ; and it was not until he had fired a pistol among them that the disturbers of his quiet were put to flight. [Tb is understood to have occurred late in life, when the faculties of Lord Eldin had become somewhat impaired.] His lordship then resumed his studies. VOL 11, 3 L
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412 BIOGRAPHICAL SKETCHES. one inquiring how this had happened, he said it was the effect of his studies. ‘‘ Studies ! ” ejaculated the inquirer. ‘‘ Yes,” growled t,he judge ; “ ye’ve heard, nae doot, about Cuke upon Littleton, but I suppose you never before heard of Clerk upon Stair !” The smalrestate of Eldin devolved to his brother ’CVilliam, one of the Jury- Court Clerks ; but he bequeathed his property, under the burden of a few legacies, to his friend, Charles ROSSE, sq., advocate. VI1.-SIR JOHN CONNELL was admitted a member of the Scottish bar in 1788. In 1795 he was appointed Sheriff-Depute of Renfrewshire; and, in 1805-6, he was chosen procurator for the Church of Scotland, and enjoyed an extensive practice in church causes. On his appointment to the office of Judge of the Court of Admiralty in 1816, and consequent resignation of the Sheriffship of Renfrewshire, he received gratifying proofs of the satisfaction which he had given in the discharge of the duties of the latter situation, from the flattering resolutions which were passed at meetings of the county of Renfrew, of the Magistrates of Paisley, and of the Faculties of Sheriff Procurators of Renfrewshire. On the abolition of the Court of Admiralty, in 1830, he received a similar testimony from the Faculty of Admiralty Procurators. He died suddenly in April 1831, at Garscube, the seat of his brother-in-law, Sir Archibald Campbell, Bart., of Succoth. Sir John was the author of “A Treatise on the Law of Scotland, respecting Tithes and the Stipends of the ParochiaI Clergy,” 3 vols. Edin. Svo, 1815, of which a second edition, in 2 vols. appeared in 1830; also, “A Treatise on the Law of Scotland respecting the Erection, Union, and Disjunction of Parishes ; the Manses and Glebes of the Parochial Clergy ; and the Patronage of Churches,” Edin. 1818, 8vo. By his lady, a daughter of Sir Ilny Campbell, he had several children.’ To this work he added a Supplement in 1823, 8vo. VII1.-JOHN HAGART, of Glendelvine, passed advocate in 1784, and had at one period no inconsiderable share of practice at the bar. He was firmly attached to the principles of Fox, and his political zeal may be said to have in some degree exceeded his prudence. Carrying the same unbending spirit into e the conduct of his professional pursuits, he was unfortunate enough to incur the censure of the Court ; and he had the singular notoriety of attempting to subject the Lord President in an action of damages for expressions made use of on the bench. This novel prosecution was founded on certain remarks unfavourable to Mr. Hagart, indulged in by his lordship, both while presiding in the Second Division as Lord Justice-clerk and after his promotion to the Presidency, The first instance complained of occurred in 1809, when the Lord Justice- His eldest son, Arthur, a member of the Faculty of Advocates, wrote “A Treatise on the Election Law in Scotland,” Edin. 1827, 8vo-a useful work, but now rendered of le8s consequence by the passing of the Reform Bill. Mr. Arthur Connell also turned his attention to the study of chemistry, in which science he was undentood to be deeply versed.
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