Slike strani



"In the middle of the north wall of the chapel within the parish church of Tichmarsh in Northamptonshire, is a wooden monument, having the bust of a person at top, wreathed, crowned with laurel. Underneath, "THE POET ;" and below, this inscription:

"Here lie the honoured remains of Erasmus Dryden, Esq., and Mary Pickering his wife.

He was the third son of Sir Erasmus Dryden, an antient Baronet, who lived with great honour in this county, in the reign of Queen Elizabeth. Mr. Dryden was a very ingenious worthy gentleman, and Justice of the Peace in this county. He married Mrs. Mary Pickering, daughter of the reverend Doc' Pickering," of Aldwinckle, and grand-daughter to Sir Gilbert Pickering : Of her it may truly be said She was a crown to her husband: Her whole conversation was as becometh the Gospel of Christ.

For a copy of this Epitaph I am indebted to Mr. John Nichols, author of the History of Leicestershire. A transcript of the same epitaph was also obligingly communicated to me by William Walcot, Jun. of Oundle, Esq.


Mr. Henry Pickering does not appear to have taken the degree of doctor, in divinity or law, in either university.

They had 14 children; the eldest of whom was John Dryden, Esq.,

the celebrated Poet and Laureat of his time. His bright parts and learning are best seen in his own excellent writings on various subjects. We boast, that he was bred and had his first learning here;

where he has often made us happie

by his kind visits and most delightfull conversation. He married the Lady Elizabeth Howard, daughter to Henry' Earl of Berkshire; by whom he had three sons, Charles, John, and Erasmus-Henry; and, after 70 odd yeares, when nature could be no longer supported, he received the notice of his approaching dissolution


with sweet submission and entire resignation
to the Divine Will;

and he took so tender and obliging a farewell of
his friends, as none but he himself could have
expressed; of which sorrowfull number
I was one.

His body was honourably interred in Westminster Abby, among the greatest wits of divers ages. His sons were all fine, ingenious, accomplished gentlemen: they died in their youth,* unmarried:

3 Thomas, the first Earl of Berkshire, is the person


4 This statement is certainly inaccurate. See p. 5, n. 5. and p. 389, n.

* Charles, at the time of his death, was thirty-eight years old; John probably in his thirty-third year; and Erasmus-Henry died in the forty-second year of his age.

Sir Erasmus-Henry, the youngest, lived
till the antient honour of the family
descended on him.

After his death, it came to his good uncle,
Sir Erasmus Dryden ;


whose grandson is the present Sir John Dryden, of Canons-Ashby, the antient seat of the Family. Sir Erasmus Dryden, the first named, married his daughters into very honourable familyes; the eldest to Sir John Philipps; the second to Sir John Hartop; the youngest was married to Sir John Pickering, great grand-father to the present Sir Gilbert Pickering, Bart.; and to the same persons I have the honour to be a grand-daughter:

And it is with delight and humble thankfullness that I reflect on the character of


my pious ancestors; and that I am


my owne hand, paying my duty to Sir Erasmus Dryden,

my great grand-father, and to

Erasmus Dryden, Esq.,


my honoured uncle, in the 80th year of my age.

ELIZA. CREED, 1722."

Sir Richard Philipps, according to Collins. 6 Sir Edward Hartop, says Collins.

Susanna, the wife of Sir John Pickering, according to Collins, was the eldest daughter of Sir Erasmus Driden, 8 Erasmus Driden, the poet's father, was the writer's great uncle.


Persons in whose Cabinets letters written by Dryden may probably be found.

The Earl of Exeter.

The representatives of James, the second Duke of Ormond.

The Earl of Lauderdale.

The representatives of Thomas Howard, the first Earl of Berkshire.

The representatives of Catharine, Duchess of Buckinghamshire, who died March 13, 1742-3. Lord Clifford.

The representatives of John Wilmot, Earl of Rochester ;-probably the Earl of Sandwich and the Earl of Lisburne.

The representative of Laurence Hyde, Earl of Rochester.-Q. The Earl of Clarendon.

The representative of George Saville, Marquis of Halifax.-Q. The Earl of Chesterfield, or the Duke of Devonshire.

The representatives of the late Sir George Saville, Bart.

The representatives of Sir Robert Howard, Bart. who died in September, 1698.

The representatives of Sir Charles Sidley, Bart. who died in August, 1701.


The representatives of Richard Graham, Jun, Esq., (the son of Richard Graham, Esq., author of the Lives of the Painters,) who died in 1749. He was at the time of his death Commissioner of the Works of Westminster Bridge. The representatives of Sir John Vanbrugh. The representatives of Sir William Trumbull, Bart., whose grand-daughter married a younger son of Lord Sandys.

The representatives of Walter Moyle, Esq., who died in 1721.

The representatives of Sir Godfrey Kneller, who died in 1723.-Q. Mr. Kneller, of Wiltshire, his grand-nephew, by a female.

The representatives of Dr. Knightly Chetwood, Dean of Glocester; whose son, Dr. John Chetwood of the Commons, died at Tempsford, in Bedfordshire, in 1735.

The representative of Sir William Leveson Gower, Bart. who died in 1692: probably the Marquis of Stafford.

The Earl of Salisbury, as representative of James the fourth Earl of Salisbury.

The representatives of Lady Chudleigh, whose son, Sir George Chudleigh, of Ashton, in Devonshire, Bart., died in 1738, leaving three daughters.

The Earl of Abingdon.

The representatives of John Vaughan, the last Earl of Carbery, who died in January, 1712-13, leaving a daughter, who married Charles, Marquis of Winchester, afterwards Duke of Bolton. She died Sep. 20, 1751.

« PrejšnjaNaprej »