Page:English Caricaturists and Graphic Humourists of the nineteenth century.djvu/421

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327
LEECH AT WHITBY.

moors, and up and down the terrible but picturesque roads; and he was still more delighted with the rich woods, deep glades, and glorious views about Mulgrave Castle. I hoped," continues Shirley Brooks, in the touching memorial which he contributed to the Illustrated London News only a few weeks afterwards, "I hoped that good was being done; but it was very hard to stir him from his pictures, of which he declared that he must finish a great number by Christmas. It was not for want of earnest and affectionate remonstrance of those close by his side, nor lack of such remonstrance being seconded by myself and others, that he persevered in overlabour at these paintings, which he had undertaken with his usual generosity, in order to enable himself to provide a very large sum of money for the benefit of his relatives, not of his own household. It need hardly be said that he was never pressed for work by his old friend the editor of Punch." For a long time past his contribution to that periodical had not exceeded one half-page engraving each week; but at Whitby he elaborated a large sketch, originally taken at Schwalbach, which is worthy of mention as being the last of his cartoons. It will be found in vol. xlvii. (1864), and is labelled The Weinbrunnen Schwalbach, and among the company drinking the waters he has introduced the late Emperor Louis, the late King of Italy, the late Pope, and other notable political personages. The light esteem in which he held everything French is notable in this drawing. Conspicuous in the foreground are several dogs belonging to the English turnspit breed, one of which views a yapping French poodle with the most unmitigated disdain. The landscape and surroundings in this composition deserve particular attention, as they are charming examples of Leech's oft-admitted talent as a landscape artist.

In the diary I find several reminiscences of the Whitby visit, and of the walks and drives and dinners with the Leeches. Shirley Brooks and his wife drove with them to Mulgrave Castle and its "glorious woods," on the 29th of September; the former afterwards went to a concert at St. Hilda's Hall, in reference to which I find the following entry:—"Grisi, Mario, Sainton and his wife. I wrote