Samuel Parr (1747-1825)
From 18th Century Literary Anecdotes

ABOUT the time of the trial of O'Quigley, who was hanged at Maidstone for treason, in 1798, some articles appeared in the Morning Chronicle, apparently reflecting on Fox. Dr. Parr read them, and was much displeased. He attributed them to Mackintosh (not then Sir James) because they contained some literary criticism or remark which Parr thought he had communicated to Mackintosh exclusively. In point of fact he was wrong, as it turned out in the sequel that Mackintosh had nothing to do with them; but while in the state of wrath which his belief that Mackintosh was the author occasioned, he (Dr. Parr) and Mackintosh dined together at the table of Sir William Milner, in Manchester Street, Manchester Square. In the course of conversation, after dinner, Mackintosh observed that O'Quigley was one of the greatest villains that ever was hanged. Dr. Parr had been watching for an opening, and immediately said,

`No, Jemmy! bad as he was, he might have been a great deal worse. He was an Irishman; he might have been a Scotchman! He was a priest; he might have been a lawyer! He stuck to his principles' — (giving a violent rap on the table) —'he might have betrayed them!'

From Jerdan, Autobiography, ii. 168-9.

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