Page:A biographical dictionary of eminent Scotsmen, vol 6.djvu/196

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SIR JOHN MALCOLM.


tary, and political character; and the brief encomium of Mr Canning in parlia- ment, that he was " a gallant officer, whose name would be remembered in India as long as the British flag is hoisted in that country," is only in accordance with the universal opinion of his merits.

Shortly after Sir John's arrival in England in 1831, he was returned to par- liament for the burgh of Launceston, and took an active part in the proceedings upon several important questions, particularly the Scottish reform bill, which he warmly opposed. He frequently addressed the house at length ; and his speeches were characterized by an intimate knowledge of the history and consti- tution of his country, by a happy arrangement, and much elegance of expres- sion. Upon the dissolution of parliament in 1832, Sir John became a candi- date for the Dumfries district of burghs ; but being too late in entering the field, and finding a majority of the electors had promised their votes, he did not persevere. He was then solicited to become a candidate for the city of Carlisle, and complied ; but having been too late in coming forward, and being person- ally unknown in the place, the result of the first day's poll decided the election against him. Sir John then retired to his seat near Windsor, and employed himself in writing a work upon the government of India, with the view of elucidating the difficult questions relating to the renewal of the East India Com- pany's charter. One of his last public acts was an able speech in the general court of proprietors of East India Stock, and the introduction of certain reso- lutions relative to the proposals of government respecting the charter tfhich resolutions were, after several adjourned discussions, adopted by a large ma- jority. His last public address was at a meeting in the Thatched House Tavern, for the purpose of forming a subscription to buy up the mansion of Sir Walter Scott for his family ; and on that occasion, his concluding sentiment was, *' that when he was gone, his son might be proud to say, that his father had been among the contributors to that shrine of genius." On the day follow- ing he was struck with paralysis, the disorder which had just carried off the illustrious person on whose account this address had been made. His death took place in Prince's Street, Hanover Square, London, on the 31st of May, 1833.

As an author, the name of Sir John Malcolm will occupy no mean place in the annals of British literature. His principal works are A Sketch of the Sikhs, a singular nation in the province of the Penjamb, in India ; The History of Persia, from the earliest period to the present time ; Sketches of Persia ; A Memoir of Central India : and his treatise on the Administration of British India, which was published only a few weeks before his death. Sir John had also been engaged for some time before his death in writing a life of lord Clive, which afterwards appeared.

Sir John married, on the 4th of June, 1807, Charlotte Campbell, daughter of Sir Alexander Campbell, baronet, who was commander-in-chief at Madras, by whom he left five children, viz : Margaret, married to her cousin, the present Sir Alexander Campbell ; George Alexander, a captain in the Guards; Charlotte Olympia ; Anne Amelia ; and Catharine Wellesley.

Upon the public character of Sir John Malcolm it would be superfluous to pass any lengthened eulogium in this place, since that character is so forcibly and faithfully sketched in the facts we have just recorded. Let it suffice to say, that he was a true patriot ; that the chief end and aim of his public life was to advance the prosperity of his country to promote the condition of every class of his fellow creatures. Such is the conclusion which the records of his life enable us to draw ; and his private character was in perfect keeping with it : he was warmly altached to his kindred and connexions ; as a friend, he was