Page:Historical account of Lisbon college.djvu/98

From Wikisource
Jump to navigation Jump to search
This page has been proofread, but needs to be validated.

The work was commenced on his return, and was continued with more or less activity till the French invasion, when it was interrupted and has not since been resumed.

From this period till his death, the College continued to be his principal place of residence, though he occasionally, and for considerable periods, lived at one or other of the houses of his numerous friends. Fearing to become in any way burdensome to the Mission, even in his old age, and apprehensive lest his pensions, after the deductions made from them by the heavy war taxes, should prove inadequate to his full maintenance, he was induced in the year 1810, at the pressing instance of Sir Charles Stewart the British Ambassador, to undertake the superintendance of the education of the two sons of the Marquis of Fronteira at the seat of that family at Convalescenza near Lisbon.

The destitute condition of these two noblemen, whose father was dead and whose mother had become insane, was the motive of Sir Charles Stewart in applying to Father Allen, as it was also that which principally determined the latter to undertake the charge. In it he continued till 1814, and though he had attained the advanced age of eighty-two when he undertook this employment, such was still the vigour of his mind, that not content with merely superintending the education of the youths, he himself gave them daily lessons in such branches of knowledge as their age admitted. Having in consequence of certain arrangements in the family discontinued his instruction of the young noblemen, he returned to the College, where he continued to enjoy his usual health and vigour of mind.

In the following January, 1815, having caught a heavy cold, a species of complaint from which he had very seldom suffered, and refusing medical aid from the conviction that he could be as usual his own doctor, he became, in a few days, so ill as to make it evident that his end was approaching. This intelligence being announced to him, he did not manifest the least perturbation but to use his own expression, recorded in the