Page:Dictionary of National Biography. Sup. Vol II (1901).djvu/425

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Herschell
Herschell
413

opera, with music by Mr. Edward Jones, Opera Comique, 14 Nov. 1885. This he printed. In collaboration with Mr. David Christie Murray he wrote, between 1887 and 1891, the following novels: 'A Dangerous Catspaw,' 'One Traveller returns,' 'The Bishop's Bible,' 'He fell among Thieves,' 'Only a Shadow,' 'Paul Jones's Alias,' and 'Wild Darrie.' His name alone appears to 'A Dead Man's Story, &c.,' 'Between the Whiffs,' 'Crime of a Christmas Toy,' 'Eagle Joe,' 'Great Beckleswaithe Mystery,' 'Hearts of Gold and Hearts of Steel,' 'His Angel,' 'A King in Bohemia,' 'Lady Turpin,' 'Leading Lady,' 'Postman's Daughter,' 'Scarlet Fortune,' and 'Woman the Mystery.' He wrote stories up to his death. He married Miss Eugenie Edwards, who played in two of his pieces. Herman's choice theatrical library was sold at Sotheby's on 23 Jan. 1885, when 234 lots fetched over 16,000l. The high prices were due in great measure to the large number of 'grangerised books.' He died at Gunnersburyon 24 Sept. 1894, and was buried at Kensal Green. His share in the dramas in which he collaborated seems to have been confined as a rule to the stories. He had considerable invention.

[Personal knowledge; Era, 29 Sept. 1894; Scott and Howard's Blanchard; Brit. Mus. Cat.; The English Catalogue of Books.]

J. K.


HERSCHELL, FARRER, first Baron Herschell (1837–1899), lord chancellor, eldest son of the Rev. Ridley Haim Herschell [q. v.], by Helen Skirving, daughter of William Mowbray of Edinburgh, was born at Brampton, Hampshire, on 2 Nov. 1837. Though in after life he conformed to the Church of England, he was bred in a form of dissent strict enough to exclude him from the older English universities. He spent some time at the university of Bonn, but his true alma mater was University College, London. In 1857 he graduated B. A. (with honours in classics) at the university of London, which he afterwards served as examiner in common law, as member of the senate, and (from 1894) as chancellor. On 12 Jan. 1858 he was admitted student at Lincoln's Inn, where he was called to the bar on 17 Nov. 1860, and elected bencher on 8 May 1872.

Like some other distinguished lawyers, Herschell was a pupil of Thomas Chitty [q. v.], the eminent special pleader. He started without connection, and during part of his period of probation contributed to the 'New Reports,' edited by (Sir) George Osborne Morgan [q. v. Suppl.] (London, 1863–5). He made his debut on the northern circuit, but afterwards confined himself to the northeastern circuit, where he rapidly established he reputation of a sound commercial lawyer, and in the course of a few years gathered sufficient practice to enable him to take silk (8 Feb. 1872). From 1873 to 1880 he held the recordership of Carlisle.

Herschell entered parliament in the liberal interest in 1874, being returned (13 June) for the city of Durham, which he continued to represent until the general election of November 1885, when he unsuccessfully contested the North Lonsdale division of Lancashire. If he did not carry the House of Commons by storm, he at any rate gained its ear unusually early. His liberalism was a matter of profound conviction, which banished the forensic ring from his speeches; one in particular, on the unfortunate circular on fugitive slaves, was marked by a gravity, a temperateness, and a dignity which raised the debate above the level of party politics (24 Feb. 1876). Somewhat later he induced the house to give serious consideration to a bill for the virtual abolition of the action for breach of promise of marriage. On the Eastern question, as afterwards on the Irish question, he followed Gladstone unwaveringly, and on his chiefs return to power he was appointed solicitor-general (3 May) and was knighted (13 May 1880). As a law officer he proved an unqualified success, but the fall of the government in June 1885, and his defeat at the subsequent general election, clouded his political prospects, and he might have waited long for further advancement but for the schism in the liberal party occasioned by the new departure on the home rule question, foreshadowed by Gladstone after the victory at the polls. The scruples of Lord Selborne and Sir Henry James, now Lord James of Hereford, precluded their acceptance of the great seal in the new administration. Herschell's confidence in Gladstone remained, however, unshaken; he unhesitatingly accepted the veteran statesman's offer, and on 8 Feb. 1886 was created lord chancellor with the title of Baron Herschell of the city of Durham. After the rejection of Gladstone's home rule bill by the House of Commons, and the formation of a unionist administration (22 July 1886), Herschell patriotically refrained from opposing its measures for the pacification of Ireland, and lent the government loyal support on all neutral questions. In January 1887, he, with Sir William Harcourt and Mr. John Morley, represented the supporters of Gladstone's home-rule policy at the abortive 'round-table' conference, which was attended by Mr. Chamberlain and Sir George Trevelyan on the part of liberal unionists. Under the auspices of the