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WARREN HASTINGS. 103

also to naturalise in Worcestershire the delicious leechee, almost

the. only fruit of Bengal which deserves to be regretted even

amidst the plenty of Covent Garden. The Mogul emperors, in

the time of their greatness, had in vain attempted to introduce

into Hindostan the goat of the table-land of Thibet, whose down
supplies the looms of Cashmere with the materials of the finest
shawls. Hastings tried, with no better fortune, to rear a breed at
Daylesford; nor does he seem to have succeeded better with the
cattle of Bootan, whose tails are in high esteem as the best fans
for brushing away the mosquitoes.

Literature divided his attention with his conservatories and his
menagerie. He had always loved books, and they were now ne-
cessary to him. Though not a poet, in any high sense of the
word, he wrote neat and polished lines with great facility, and
was fond of exercising this talent. Indeed, if we must speak out,
he seems to have been more of a Trissotin than was to be expected
from the powers of his mind, and from the great part which he
had played in life. We are assured in these Memoirs that the
first thing which he did in the morning was to write a copy of
verses. When the family and guests assembled, the poem made
its appearance as regularly as the eggs and rolls; and Mr. Gleig
requires us to believe that, if from any accident Hastings came to
the breakfast-table without one of his charming performances in
his hand, the omission was felt by all as a grievous disappoint-
ment. Tastes differ widely. For ourselves, we must say that,
however good the breakfasts at Daylesford may have been, —and
we are assured that the tea was of the most aromatic flavour, and
that neither tongue nor venison-pasty was wanting,—we should
have thought the reckoning high if we had been forced to earn
our repast by listening every day to a new madrigal or sonnet
composed by our host. We are glad, however, that Mr. Gleig has
preserved this little feature of character, though we think it by
no means a beauty. It is good to be often reminded of the incon-
sistency of human nature, and to learn to look without wonder or
disgust on the weaknesses which are found in the strongest minds.
Dionysius in old times, Frederic in the last century, with capacity
and vigour equal to the conduct of the greatest affairs, united all
the little vanities and affectations of provincial blue-stockings.
These great examples may console the admirers of Hastings for

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