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narch, now coming home to poffefs that birthright which had fo long been withheld from him by Oliver and himfelf, he thought it prudent to retire to the Continent.
It is very fingular, that, at the restoration, his name was not mentioned in either of the houfes of parliament. Lord Clarendon fays, "that he fled more for fear of his debts, than of the king." That good-natured prince did not think it neceffary to enquire after a man who had been fo long forgotten.
Though Richard was not in any danger as to his life, yet he undoubtedly was of his liberty; for as he had received but little from his grant, and no more could be expected, he had not wherewithal to defray the confiderable fums he owed, on account of his father's pompous funeral, and what he had expended for the ftates. Befides, as great part of the property he was at that time poffeffed of, was of fuch a tenure that it would revert to the crown, or to fuch perfons as it had been unjustly taken from by the long parliament, and bestowed upon Oliver, he knew his creditors would not fhew the leaft lenity towards him; and had he been arrested for any part of his numerous debts, he further
excess of haughtinefs. All Italy, with the States of Africa, ftood in awe of him, after he had severely punished them for the depredations they had committed on the British ships. So that though the means by which he attained the fovereign power were highly unwarrantable, his use of that power was as highly commendable, and advantageous to the nation.
This profperous confummation of his ambitious wishes was not however attended with that happiness which alone could make it defirable; for, worn out by exceffive fatigue, both of mind and body; by grief arising from many domeftic misfortunes, among which the lofs of a favourite daughter was not the leaft; and likewife by his load of debts; he paid the debt of nature at his palace of Whitehall, on the 3d day of September 1658; a day that in feveral instances of his life had been pregnant with great events to him.
His body, after being embalmed, and wrapped in a fheet of lead, was removed on the 26th, from the palace of Whitehall, his ufual refidence, to Somerset-house, where it lay in ftate; and on the 23d of November,
va, and would be glad to have the honour to kifs his hands." The prince received him with great civility and grace, according to his natural custom; and, after a few words, began to difcourfe of the affairs of England, and afked many qucftions concerning the king, and whether all men were quiet, and submitted obediently to him; which the other anfwered briefly, according to according to the truth. "Well," faid the prince, "Oliver, though he was a traitor and a villain, was a brave fellow, had great parts, great courage, and was worthy to command; but that Richard, that coxcomb, coquin, poltroon, was furely the bafeft fellow alive. What is become of that fool? How is it poffible that he should be fuch a fot?" He answered," He was betrayed by those whom he most trufted, and who had been moft obliged by his father:" fo being weary of his vifit, quickly took his leave, and the next morning left the town, out of fear that the prince might know that he was the fool and coxcomb he had mentioned fo kindly. And within two days after, the prince did come to know who it was whom he had treated fo well, and whom before he had believed to be a man not very glad of the king's refloration."
Richard did not remain long at Geneva. Thinking a more private fituation needful, he went to Paris, where he refided in mean lodgings, fituated in an obfcure part of the city, and with only one fervant to attend upon him. Here, unknown, unnoticed, and forfaken by all his friends, he lived, under a borrowed name, with a scanty income, if not in real poverty, a memorable instance of the mutability of fortune, and of the vanity and uncertainty of human grandeur. He had, however, no right to complain, since he and his father had fo long made their fovereign live in exile, and fo poor as not to be able to keep a carriage.
In this fituation he continued at Paris (except a fhort interval fpent at Geneva) till about the year 1680; when having overcome moft, if not all his pecuniary difficulties, and knowing the unpopularity of Charles's Court, he ventured to return to his native country.
Richard's lady being dead before his return to England, he did not go to Hursley, but chiefly refided in a house near the church at Chefhunt in Hertfordshire, where he lived, under another name, and unknown, except
to a few friends. In this retirement, though he courted privacy, he did not lead the life of a reclufe. He made occafional vifits to his friends; but in all his converfations, even with his most intimate acquaintance, he cautioufly avoided fpeaking of his former ele
One would now have thought, that he had weathered every ftorm, and that he would retire to the silent grave, in peace, if not with happiness; but this was not the cafe. By the death of his only fon, who was called, after his grandfather, Oliver, and who died in the year 1705, without iffue, Richard became entitled to a life eftate in the manor of Hurley. It being neceffary that he fhould take poffeffion of it, he fent his youngest daughter into Hampshire for that purpofe. But instead of taking poffeffion of it in the name of her father, fhe and her fifters, notwithstanding he had been the fondeft of parents to them, forgetting their duty, and even humanity, refufed to deliver it up to him. The reafon they gave for doing this was, that they confidered him as fuperannuated, and therefore propofed only to allow him a fmall fum yearly. This, Richard refufed to accept, and commenced a fuit againf them, to obtain pof