Page images

great multitudes of facts those which are truly characteristic and significant, and, above all, for his transparent honesty of purpose, for the fullness and fairness with which he seldom failed to recount the faults of those with whom he agreed and the merits of those from whom he differed. This last quality is one of the rarest in history, and it is especially admirable in a writer who had himself strong party convictions, who passed much of his life in active politics, and who was often called upon to describe contests in which his own ancestors bore a part.

To the great courtesy of the authorities of the French Foreign Office I am indebted for copies of some valuable letters relating to the closing days of Queen Anne; and I must also take this opportunity of acknowledging the unwearied kindness I have received from Sir BERNARD BURKE, Ulster King of Arms, during my investigation of those Irish State Papers which he has arranged so admirably and which he knows so well.

LONDON: November 1877.

« PreviousContinue »