Part 52 out of 53
legends were current; figures in Scott's "Kenilworth."
WAZIRIS, a tribe of independent Afghans inhabiting the Suleiman
Mountains, on the W. frontier of the Punjab.
WEALTH, defined by Ruskin to be the possession of things in
themselves valuable, that is, of things available for the support of
life, or inherently possessed of life-giving power.
WEBER, KARL MARIA VON, German composer, born near Luebeck, of a famed
musical family; early gave proof of musical talent; studied at Vienna
under Abbe Vogler, and at Dresden became founder and director of the
German opera; his first great production was "Der Freischuetz," which
established his fame, and was succeeded by, among others, "Oberon," his
masterpiece, first produced in London, where, shortly after the event, he
died, broken in health; he wrote a number of pieces for the piano,
deservedly popular (1786-1826).
WEBER, WILHELM EDUARD, German physicist, born at Wittenberg;
professor at Goettingen; distinguished for his contributions to
electricity and magnetism, both scientific and practical (1801-1891).
WEBSTER, DANIEL, American statesman and orator, born at New
Hampshire; bred to the bar, and practised in the provincial courts;
by-and-by went to Boston, which was ever after his home; entered Congress
in 1813, where, by his commanding presence and his animated oratory, he
soon made his mark; was secretary for foreign affairs under President
Harrison, and negotiated the Ashburton Treaty in settlement of the
"boundary-line" question between England and the States; was much admired
by Emerson, and was, when he visited England, commended by him to the
regard of Carlyle as a man to "hear speak," as "_with a cause_ he could
strike a stroke like a smith"; Carlyle did not take to him; he was too
political for his taste, though he recognised in him a "man--never have
seen," he wrote Emerson, "so much _silent Berserkir-rage_ in any other
WEBSTER, JOHN, English dramatist of the 17th century; did a good
deal as a dramatist in collaboration with others, but some four plays are
exclusively his own work, the two best the "White Devil" and the "Duchess
WEBSTER, NOAH, lexicographer, born at Hartford, Connecticut, U.S.;
bred to law; tried journalism; devoted 20 years to his "Dictionary of the
English Language" (1758-1843).
WEDGWOOD, JOSIAH, celebrated English potter, born at Burslem, son of
a potter; in 1759 started a pottery on artistic lines in his native
place; devoted himself first to the study of the material of his art and
then to its ornamentation, in which latter he had at length the good
fortune to enlist Flaxman as a designer, and so a ware known by his name
became famous for both its substantial and artistic excellence far and
wide over the country and beyond; he was a man of varied culture and of
princely generosity, having by his art amassed a large fortune
WEDNESBURY (69), a town in Staffordshire, 8 m. NW. of Birmingham;
iron-ware manufacture the chief industry; has an old church on the site
of an old temple to Woden, whence the name, it is alleged.
WEDNESDAY, fourth day of the week, Woden's Day, as Thursday is
Thor's. It is called Midwoch, i. e. Midweek, by the Germans.
WEEK, division of time of seven days, supposed to have been
suggested by the interval between the quarters of the moon.
WEEPING PHILOSOPHER, a sobriquet given to HERACLITUS (q. v.)
from a melancholy disposition ascribed to him, in contrast with
DEMOCRITUS (q. v.), designated the laughing philosopher.
WEI-HAI-WEI, a city in a deep bay on the Shantung promontory, China,
40 m. E. of Chefoo, and nearly opposite Port Arthur, which is situated on
the northern side of the entrance to the Gulf of Pechili; was leased to
Great Britain in 1898, along with the islands in the bay and a belt of
land along the coast; its harbour is well sheltered, and accommodates a
large number of vessels.
WEIMAR (24), capital of the grand-duchy of Saxe-Weimar, in a valley
on the left bank of the Ilm, 13 m. E. of Erfurt, and famous as for many
years the residence of the great Goethe and the illustrious literary
circle of which he was the centre, an association which constitutes the
chief interest of the place.
WEINGARTNER, FELIX, composer and musical conductor, born at Zara,
Dalmatia; has composed symphonic poems, operas, and songs; _b_. 1863.
WEISMANN, AUGUST, biologist, born at Frankfort-on-the-Main; studied
medicine at Goettingen; devoted himself to the study of zoology, the
first-fruit of which was a treatise on the "Development of Diptera," and
at length to the variability in organisms on which the theory of descent,
with modifications, is based, the fruit of which was a series of papers
published in 1882 under the title of "Studies on the Theory of Descent";
but it is with the discussions on the question of heredity that his name
is most intimately associated. The accepted theory on the subject assumes
that characters acquired by the individual are transmitted to offspring,
and this assumption, in his "Essays upon Heredity," he maintains to be
wholly groundless, and denies that it has any foundation in fact;
heredity, according to him, is due to the continuity of the germ-plasm,
or the transmission from generation to generation of a substance of a
uniform chemical and molecular composition; _b_. 1834.
WEISS, BERNHARD, German theologian, born at Koenigsberg; became
professor at Kiel and afterwards at Berlin; has written on the theology
of the New Testament, an introduction to it, and a "Leben Jesu," all able
works; _b_. 1827.
WEISSENFELS (23), a town of Prussian Saxony, 35 m. SW. of Leipzig,
with an old castle of the Duke of Weissenfels and various manufactures.
WEISSNICHTWO (Know-not-where), in Carlyle's "Sartor," an imaginary
European city, viewed as the focus, and as exhibiting the operation, of
all the influences for good and evil of the time we live in, described in
terms which characterised city life in the first quarter of the 19th
century; so universal appeared the spiritual forces at work in society at
that time that it was impossible to say _where_ they were and _where_
they were _not_, and hence the name of the city, Know-not-where.
WEIZSAeCHER, KARL, eminent German theologian; studied at Tuebingen and
Berlin; succeeded BAUR (q. v.) as professor at Tuebingen; was a
New Testament critic, and the editor of a theological journal, and
distinguished for his learning and lucid style; _b_. 1822.
WELLDON, JAMES EDWARD COWELL, bishop of Calcutta; educated at Eton
and Cambridge; has held several appointments, both scholastic and
clerical; has translated several of the works of Aristotle, and was
Hulsean Lecturer at Cambridge in 1897; _b_. 1854.
WELLER, SAM, Mr. Pickwick's servant, and an impersonation of the
ready wit and best quality of London low life.
WELLESLEY, a small province, part of Penang Territory, in the
Straits Settlements; of great fertility, and yields tropical products in
immense quantities, such as spices, tea, coffee, sugar, cotton, and
WELLESLEY, RICHARD COWLEY, MARQUIS OF, statesman and administrator,
born in Dublin, eldest son of the Earl of Mornington, an Irish peer, and
eldest brother of the Duke of Wellington, and his senior by nine years;
educated at Eton and Cambridge, where he distinguished himself in
classics; in 1781 succeeded his father in the Irish House of Peers;
entered Parliament in 1784; was a supporter of Pitt, and in 1797
appointed Governor-General of India in succession to Cornwallis, and
raised to the English peerage as Baron Wellesley; in this capacity he
proved himself a great administrator, and by clearing out the French and
crushing the power of Tippoo Saib, as well as increasing the revenue of
the East India Company, laid the foundation of the British power in
India, for which he was raised to the marquisate, and voted a pension of
L5000; he afterwards became Foreign Secretary of State and Viceroy of
WELLHAUSEN, JULIUS, Old Testament scholar, born at Hameln; held the
post of professor of Theology at Greifswald, but resigned the post from
conscientious scruples and became professor of Oriental Languages at
Marburg in 1885; is best known among us as a biblical critic on the lines
of the so-called higher criticism, the criticism which seeks to arrange
the different parts of the Bible in their proper historical connection
and order; _b_. 1844.
WELLINGBOROUGH (15), a market-town in Northamptonshire, 10 m. NE. of
Northampton; has some fine buildings; the manufacture of shoes a chief
WELLINGTON (33), the capital of New Zealand, in the North Island, on
Cook Strait; has a spacious harbour, with excellent accommodation for
shipping, a number of public buildings, including government offices, and
two cathedrals, a Roman Catholic and an Anglican, and a considerable
trade; in 1865 it superseded Auckland as the capital of the whole of New
WELLINGTON, ARTHUR WELLESLEY (or WESLEY), DUKE OF, born
probably in Dublin, third son of the Earl of Mornington, an Irish peer,
educated first at Chelsea, then at Eton, and then at a military school at
Angers, in France; entered the army in 1787 as an ensign in the 73rd, and
stepped gradually upwards in connection with different regiments, till in
1793 he became lieutenant-colonel of the 33rd; sat for a time in the
Irish Parliament as a member for Trim, and went in 1794 to the
Netherlands, and served in a campaign there which had disastrous issues
such as disgusted him with military life, and was about to leave the army
when he was sent to India, where he distinguished himself in the storming
of Seringapatam, and in the command of the war against the Mahrattas,
which he brought to a successful issue in 1803, returning home in 1805;
next year he entered the Imperial Parliament, and in 1807 was appointed
Chief Secretary for Ireland; in 1808 he left for Portugal, where he was
successful against the French in several engagements, and in 1809 was
appointed commander-in-chief of the Peninsular army; in this capacity his
generalship became conspicuous in a succession of victories, in which he
drove the French first out of Portugal and then out of Spain, defeating
them finally at Toulouse on the 12th April 1814, and so ending the
Peninsular War; on his return home he was loaded with honours, and had
voted to him from the public treasury a grant of L400,000; on the return
of Napoleon from Elba he was appointed general of the allies against him
in the Netherlands and on 18th June 1815 defeated him in the
ever-memorable battle of Waterloo; this was the crowning feat in
Wellington's military life, and the nation showed its gratitude to him
for his services by presenting him with the estate of Strathfieldsaye, in
Hampshire, worth L263,000, the price paid for it to Lord Rivers, the
proprietor; in 1827 he was appointed commander-in-chief of the army, and
in 1828 was Prime Minister of the State; as a statesman he was opposed to
Parliamentary reform, but he voted for the emancipation of the Catholics
and the abolition of the Corn Laws; he died in Walmer Castle on 1st
September 1852, aged 84, and was buried beside Nelson in a crypt of St.
WELLINGTON COLLEGE, a college founded in 1853 at Wokingham, Berks,
in memory of the Duke of Wellington, primarily for the education of the
sons of deceased military officers; there is a classical school to
prepare for the university, and a modern side to prepare for the army,
WELLS, a small episcopal city in Somersetshire, 20 m. SW. of Bath;
it derives its name from hot springs near it, and is possessed of a
beautiful cruciform cathedral in the Early English style, adorned with
some 600 statues of saints, 151 of which are life-size, and some of them
WELLS, CHARLES JEREMIAH, English poet, born in London; author of a
dramatic poem entitled "Joseph and his Brethren," published in 1824, a
poem which failed to attract attention at the time, and the singular
merits of which were first recognised by Swinburne in 1875, the author
having meantime given up literature for the law, to which he had been
WELSH, DAVID, a Scottish divine, a gentlemanly scholarly man,
professor of Church History in the University of Edinburgh; was Moderator
of the General Assembly on the occasion of the Disruption of the Scottish
Church (1843), and headed the secession on the day of the exodus
WELSH, or WELCH, JOHN, a Scottish divine, a Nithsdale man;
became Presbyterian minister of Ayr, and was distinguished both as a
preacher and for his sturdy opposition to the ecclesiastical tyranny of
James VI., for which latter he suffered imprisonment and exile; he was an
ancestor of Jane Welsh Carlyle, and was married to a daughter of John
Knox, who, when the king thought to win her over by offering her husband
a bishopric, held out her apron before sovereign majesty, and threatened
she would rather kep (catch) his head there than that he should live and
be a bishop; she figures in the chapter in "Sartor" on Aprons, as one of
Carlyle's apron-worthies (1570-1625).
WELSH CALVINISTIC METHODISTS, the largest Nonconformist body in
Wales, of native growth, and that originated in the middle of the 18th
century in connection with a great religious awakening; has an
ecclesiastical constitution on Presbyterian lines, and is in alliance
with the Presbyterian Church of England; it consists of 1330 churches,
and has a membership of over 150,000, that is, on their communion roll,
and two theological seminaries, one at Trevecca and one at Bala.
WELSHPOOL (6), town in Montgomeryshire, North Wales, on the left
bank of the Severn, 19 m. W. of Shrewsbury, the manufacture of flannels
and woollen goods being the chief industry.
WENDS, a horde of savage Slavs who, about the 6th century, invaded
and took possession of vacant lands on the southern shores of the Baltic,
and extended their inroads as far as Hamburg and the ocean, south also
far over the Elbe in some quarters, and were a source of great trouble to
the Germans in Henry the Fowler's time, and after; they burst in upon
Brandenburg once, in "never-imagined fury," and stamped out, as they
thought, the Christian religion there by wholesale butchery of its
priests, setting up for worship their own god "Triglaph, ugliest and
stupidest of all false gods," described as "something like three whales'
cubs combined by boiling, or a triple porpoise dead-drunk." They were at
length "fairly beaten to powder" by Albert the Bear, "and either swept
away or else damped down into Christianity and keeping of the peace,"
though remnants of them, with their language and customs, exist in
Lusatia to this day.
WENDT, HANS, German theologian, born in Hamburg, professor at Kiel
and at Heidelberg; has written an excellent "Leben Jesu" among other able
works; _b_. 1853.
WENEGELD, among the old Saxons and other Teutonic races a fine, the
price of homicide, of varying amount, paid in part to the relatives of
the person killed and in part to the king or chief.
WENER, LAKE, the largest lake in Sweden, in the SW., 150 ft. above
the sea-level and 100 m. long by 50 m. of utmost breadth, contains
several islands, and abounds in fish.
WENTWORTH. See STRAFFORD.
WEREWOLF, a person transformed into a wolf, or a being with a
literally wolfish appetite, under the presumed influence of a charm or
some demoniac possession.
WERNER, FRIEDRICH LUDWIG ZACHARIAS, a dramatist of a mystic stamp,
born at Koenigsberg; is the subject of an essay by Carlyle, and described
by him as a man of a very _dissolute_ spiritual texture; wrote the
"Templars of Cyprus," the "Story of the Fallen Master," &c. (1768-1823).
WERTHER, the hero of Goethe's sentimental romance, "THE SORROWS
OF WERTHER" (q. v.).
WESLEY, CHARLES, hymn-writer, born at Epworth, educated at Eton and
Oxford; was associated with his more illustrious brother in the
establishment of Methodism; his hymns are highly devotional, and are to
be found in all the hymnologies of the Church (1708-1788).
WESLEY, JOHN, the founder of Methodism, born at Epworth, in
Lincolnshire, son of the rector; was educated at the Charterhouse and at
Lincoln College, Oxford, of which he became a Fellow; while there he and
his brother, with others, were distinguished for their religious
earnestness, and were nicknamed Methodists; in 1735 he went on a mission
to Georgia, U.S., and had for fellow-voyagers some members of the
Moravian body, whose simple piety made a deep impression on him; and on
his return in two years after he made acquaintance with a Moravian
missionary in London, and was persuaded to a kindred faith; up to this
time he had been a High Churchman, but from this time he ceased from all
sacerdotalism and became a believer in and a preacher of the immediate
connection of the soul with, and its direct dependence upon, God's grace
in Christ alone; this gospel accordingly he went forth and preached in
disregard of all mere ecclesiastical authority, he riding about from
place to place on horseback, and finding wherever he went the people in
thousands, in the open air generally, eagerly expectant of his approach,
all open-eared to listen to his word; to the working-classes his visits
were specially welcome, and it was among them they bore most fruit; "the
keynote of his ministry he himself gave utterance to when he exclaimed,
'Church or no Church, the people must be saved.'" Saved or Lost? was with
him the one question, and it is the one question of all genuine Methodism
to this hour (1703-1791).
WESSEL, JOHANN, a Reformer before the Reformation, born at
Groeningen; was a man of powerful intellect; taught in the schools, and
was called by his disciples _Lux Mundi_ (1420-1489).
WESSEX, a territory in the SW. of England, inhabited by Saxons who
landed at Southampton in 514, known as the West Saxons, and who gradually
extended their dominion over territory beyond it till, under Egbert,
their king, they became supreme over the other kingdoms of the Heptarchy.
WEST, BENJAMIN, painter, born near Springfield, Pennsylvania, of
Quaker parentage; was self-taught, painted portraits at the age of 16,
went to Italy in 1760, and produced such work there that he was elected
member of several of the Italian academies; visited England on his way
back to America in 1763, where he attracted the attention of George III.,
who patronised him, for whom he painted a goodly number of pictures to
adorn Windsor Castle; he remained in England 40 years, painting hundreds
of pictures, and was in 1792 elected President of the Royal Academy in
succession to Sir Joshua Reynolds; among his paintings were "The Death of
General Wolfe," "Edward III. at Crecy," and "The Black Prince at
WEST AFRICA, name given to the region SW. of the Sahara, consisting
of low lands with high lands behind, and through the valleys of which
rivers flow down, and including Senegambia, Upper Guinea, and Lower
Guinea, the coast of which is occupied by trading stations belonging to
the French, the English, the Germans, the Belgians, and the Portuguese,
and who are severally forcing their way into the inland territory
connected with their several stations.
WEST AUSTRALIA (161), the largest of the Australian colonies, though
least populous, formerly called the Swan River Settlement, 1500 m. long
and 1000 m. broad, and embracing an area nearly equal to one-third of the
whole Australian continent; great part of it, particularly in the centre,
is desert, and the best soil is in the W. and NE.; emigration to it
proceeded slowly at first, but for the last 20 years it has been steadily
increasing, especially since the discovery of gold, and it is now opening
up; in 1890 it received a constitution and became self-governing like the
other possessions of Great Britain in Australia; Perth, on the Swan
River, is the capital, and the chief exports are wool and gold.
WEST BROMWICH (59), a manufacturing town of the "Black Country," in
Staffordshire, 5 m. NW. of Birmingham; has important industries connected
with the manufacture of iron ware; is of modern growth, and has developed
WEST INDIES (3,000), an archipelago of islands extending in a curve
between North and South America from Florida on the one side to the delta
of the Orinoco on the other, in sight of each other almost all the way,
and constituting the summits of a sunken range of mountains which run in
a line parallel to the ranges of North America; they are divided into the
Great Antilles (including Cuba, Hayti, Jamaica, and Porto Rico), the
Lesser Antilles (including the Leeward and the Windward Isles), and the
Bahamas; lie all, except the last, within the Torrid Zone, and embrace
unitedly an area larger than that of Great Britain; they yield all manner
of tropical produce, and export sugar, coffee, tobacco, cotton, spices,
&c.; except Cuba, HAYTI (q. v.), and Porto Rico, they belong to
the Powers of Europe--Great Britain, France, Holland, and Denmark, and
till lately Spain. The name Indies was applied to them because when
Columbus first discovered them he believed he was close upon India, as he
calculated he would find he was by sailing west.
WEST POINT, an old fortress, the seat of the United States Military
Academy, on the right bank of the Hudson River, 12 m. N. of New York; the
Academy is on a plateau 188 ft. above the road; it was established in
1802 for training in the science and practice of military engineering,
and the cadets are organised into a battalion of four companies officered
from among themselves, all under strictest discipline.
WEST VIRGINIA. See VIRGINIA.
WESTCOTT, BROOK FOSS, biblical scholar, born near Birmingham;
studied at Trinity College, Cambridge, and obtained a Fellowship; took
orders in 1851, and became Bishop of Durham in 1890; edited along with
Dr. Hort an edition of the Greek New Testament, the labour of years, and
published a number of works bearing on the New Testament and its
structure and teachings; _b_. 1825.
WESTKAPPEL DYKE, one of the strongest dykes in the Netherlands;
protects the W. coast of Walcheren; is 4000 yards long, and surmounted by
a railway line.
WESTMACOTT, SIR RICHARD, sculptor, born in London; studied at Rome
under Canova; acquired great repute as an artist on his return to
England, and succeeded Flaxman as professor of Sculpture in the Royal
Academy; he executed statues of Pitt, Addison, and others, and a number
of monuments in Westminster Abbey and St. Paul's; his latest work was the
sculptured pediment of the British Museum (1775-1856).
WESTMACOTT, RICHARD, sculptor and writer on art, born in London, son
of preceding; was distinguished for the grace, simplicity, and purity of
his style as an artist; succeeded his father as professor of Sculpture in
the Royal Academy, and wrote a "Handbook of Sculpture" (1799-1872).
WESTMEATH (71), an inland county in Leinster, Ireland; is mostly
level and gently undulating; the soil in many parts is good, but little
cultivated; the only cereal crop raised is oats, but the herbage it
yields supplies food for fattening cattle, which is a chief industry.
WESTMINSTER, a city of Middlesex, on the N. bank of the Thames, and
comprising a great part of the West End of London; originally a village,
it was raised to the rank of a city when it became the seat of a bishop
in 1451, but it was as the seat of the abbey that it developed into a
bishop's see; the abbey, for which it is so famous, was erected as it now
exists at the same period, during 1245-72, on the site of one founded by
Edward the Confessor during 1045-65; in Westminster Parliaments were held
as early as the 13th century, and it is as the seat of the legislative
and legal authority of the country that it figures most in modern times,
though the most interesting chapters in its history are connected with
the abbey round which it sprang up. See Dean Stanley's "Memorials of
WESTMINSTER ASSEMBLY OF DIVINES, a convocation of divines assembled
under authority of Parliament, at which delegates from England and
Scotland adopted the SOLEMN LEAGUE AND COVENANT (q. v.), fixed
the establishment of the Presbyterian form of Church government in the
three kingdoms, drew up the "Confession of Faith," the "Directory of
Public Worship," and the Larger and Shorter Catechisms; it held its first
meeting on 1st July 1643, and did not break up till 22nd February 1649.
WESTMINSTER HALL, a structure attached to the Houses of Parliament
at Westminster, built by King William Rufus, and roofed and remodelled by
Richard II.; was the scene of the trials of Wallace, Sir Thomas More,
Strafford, Charles I., Warren Hastings, and others, as well as the
installation of Cromwell as Lord Protector, and till 1883 the seat of the
High Courts of Justice; is a place of great historic interest; has a roof
composed of 13 great timber beams, and one of the largest in the world to
WESTMORLAND (i. e. westmoorland) (60), a northern county of
England, 32 m. from N. to S. and 40 m. from E. to W.; is in the Lake
District, and mountainous, with tracts of fertile land and forest land,
as well as rich pasture lands.
WESTON-SUPER-MARE (15), a watering-place in Somersetshire, on the
Bristol Channel, looking across it towards Wales.
WESTPHALIA, a German duchy, now a Prussian province; made with other
territories in 1807 into a kingdom by Napoleon for his brother Jerome,
and designed to be the centre of the Confederation of the Rhine; was
assigned to Prussia in 1813 according to the Treaty of Vienna.
WETSTEIN, JOHANN JACOB, biblical scholar, born at Basel; was devoted
to the study of the New Testament text; published a Greek Testament with
his emendations and "Prolegomena" connected therewith; his emendations,
one in particular, brought his orthodoxy under suspicion for a time
WETTE, DE. See DE WETTE.
WETTER, LAKE, one of the largest lakes in Sweden, 70 m. long, 13 m.
broad, and 270 ft. above the sea-level; its clear blue waters are fed by
hidden springs, it rises and falls periodically, and is sometimes subject
to sudden agitations during a calm.
WETTERHORN (i. e. peak of tempests), a high mountain of the
Bernese Oberland, with three peaks each a little over 12,000 ft. in
WEXFORD (111), a maritime county in Leinster, Ireland; is an
agricultural county, and exports large quantities of dairy produce; has a
capital (11) of the same name, a seaport at the mouth of the river
WEYDEN, ROGER VAN DER, Flemish painter, born at Tourney; was trained
in the school of Van Eyck, whose style he contributed to spread; his most
famous work, a "Descent from the Cross," now in Madrid (1400-1464).
WEYMOUTH (13), a market-town and watering-place in Dorsetshire, 8 m.
S. of Dorchester; has a fine beach and an esplanade over a mile in
length; it came into repute from the frequent visits of George III.
WHARTON, PHILIP, DUKE OF, an able man, but unprincipled, who led a
life of extravagance; professed loyalty to the existing government in
England; intrigued with the Stuarts, and was convicted of high-treason,
and died in Spain in a miserable condition (1698-1731).
WHATELY, RICHARD, archbishop of Dublin, born in London; studied at
Oriel College, Oxford, of which he became a Fellow, and had Arnold,
Keble, Newman, Pusey, and other eminent men as contemporaries; was a man
of liberal views and sympathies, and much regarded for his sagacity and
his skill in dialectics; his post as archbishop was no enviable one; is
best known by his "Logic," for a time the standard work of the subject;
he opposed the Tractarian movement, but was too latitudinarian for the
evangelical party (1787-1863).
WHEATSTONE, SIR CHARLES, celebrated physicist and electrician, born
near Gloucester; was a man of much native ingenuity, and gave early proof
of it; was appointed professor of Experimental Philosophy in King's
College, London, and distinguished himself by his inventions in
connection with telegraphy; the stereoscope was of his invention
WHEEL, BREAKING ON THE, a very barbarous mode of inflicting death at
one time, in which the limbs of the victim were stretched along the
spokes of a wheel, and the wheel being turned rapidly round, the limbs
were broken by repeated blows from an iron bar; this is what the French
_roue_ means, applied figuratively to a person broken with dissipation,
or what we call a rake.
WHEELING (39), largest city in West Virginia, U.S., on the Ohio
River, 67 m. SW. of Pittsburg; contains some fine buildings; is a country
rich in bituminous coal; has extensive manufactures; is a great railway
centre, and carries on an extensive trade.
WHEWELL, WILLIAM, professor of the "science of things in general,"
born at Lancaster, son of a joiner; studied at Trinity College,
Cambridge, of which he became successively fellow, tutor, professor, and
master; was a man of varied attainments, of great intellectual and even
physical power, and it was of him Sydney Smith said, "Science was his
_forte_ and omniscience his _foible_"; wrote "Astronomy and General
Physics in reference to Natural Theology," the "Philosophy of the
Inductive Sciences," the "History of Moral Philosophy," an essay on the
"Plurality of Worlds," &c. (1794-1866).
WHICHCOTE, BENJAMIN, Cambridge Platonist, born in Shropshire; was a
Fellow and Tutor of Emmanuel College; was distinguished for his personal
influence over his pupils, many of them eminent men; he gave a
philosophical turn to their theological opinions (1609-1683).
WHIGS, name given at the end of the 17th century to the Covenanters
of Scotland, and afterwards extended to the Liberal party in England from
the leniency with which they were disposed to treat the whole
Nonconformist body, to which the persecuted Scottish zealots were of kin;
they respected the constitution, and sought only to reform abuses.
WHISTLER, JAMES ABBOT M'NEILL, painter and etcher, born at Lowell,
Massachusetts; studied military engineering at WEST POINT (q. v.),
and art at Paris, and settled at length as an artist in London,
where he has exhibited his paintings frequently; has executed some famous
portraits, in especial one of his mother, and a remarkable one of Thomas
Carlyle, now the property of Glasgow Corporation; paintings of his
exhibited in the Grosvenor Gallery, London, provoked a criticism from
Ruskin, which was accounted libellous, and as plaintiff he got a farthing
damages, without costs; very much, it is understood, to his critic's
disgust, and little to his own satisfaction, as is evident from the
character of the pamphlet he wrote afterwards in retaliation, entitled
"Whistler _versus_ Ruskin: Art and Art Critics"; _b_. 1834.
WHISTON, WILLIAM, divine and mathematician, born in Leicestershire;
educated at Clare College, Cambridge, of which he became a Fellow; gained
reputation from his "Theory of the Earth"; succeeded Sir Isaac Newton as
Lucasian professor, but was discharged from the office and expelled from
the university for Arianism; removed to London, where he lived a
separatist from the Church, and died a Baptist; wrote "Primitive
Christianity," and translated "Josephus"; he was a crotchety but a
conscientious man (1667-1752).
WHITBY, a seaport and famous bathing-place in the North Riding of
Yorkshire, 541/2 m. NE. of York; is situated at the mouth of the Esk, and
looks N. over the German Ocean; it consists of an old fishing town
sloping upwards, and a fashionable new town above and behind it, with the
ruins of an abbey; Captain Cook was a 'prentice here, and it was in
Whitby-built ships, "the best and stoutest bottoms in England," that he
circumnavigated the globe.
WHITBY, DANIEL, English divine, born in Northamptonshire; became
rector of St. Edmunds, Salisbury; involved himself in ecclesiastical
controversy first with the Catholics, then with the High Church party,
and got into trouble; had one of his books burned at Oxford; his most
important work "Paraphrase and Commentary on the New Testament"; died an
WHITE, ALEXANDER, a Scottish divine, born in Kirriemuir, of humble
parentage; a man of deep religious sympathies and fervid zeal, with an
interest before all in spiritual things; studied the arts in Aberdeen and
theology in Edinburgh, in the latter of which cities he ministers to a
large attached flock; is the author of books, originally for most part
addresses, calculated to awaken in others an interest in divine things
akin to his own; _b_. 1837.
WHITE, SIR GEORGE STEWART, English general, has had a brilliant
career; entered the army in 1853; won the Victoria Cross twice over;
served in the Mutiny, in the Afghan Campaign (1879-1880), in the Nile
Expedition (1885), in the Burmese War (1885-1887), and was made
Commander-in-Chief in India in 1893, Quartermaster-General in 1898, and
is now distinguishing himself by his generalship and heroism in the South
African War; _b_. 1835.
WHITE, GILBERT, English naturalist, born in the village of Selborne,
Hants; educated at Oriel College, Oxford, in which he obtained a
Fellowship, which he retained all his life; became curate of Selborne,
and passed an uneventful life studying the habits of the animals around
him, where he "had not only no great men to look on, but not even men,
only sparrows and cockchafers; yet has he left us a 'Biography' of these,
which, under the title of 'Natural History of Selborne,' still remains
valuable to us, which has copied a little sentence or two _faithfully_
from the inspired volume of Nature, and so," adds Carlyle, "is itself not
without inspiration" (1720-1793).
WHITE, HENRY KIRKE, minor poet, born at Nottingham; published a book
of poems in 1803, which procured him the patronage of Southey; got a
sizarship in St. John's, Cambridge; through over-zeal in study undermined
his constitution and died of consumption, Southey editing his "Remains"
WHITE, JOSEPH BLANCO, man of letters of an unstable creed, born in
Seville, of Irish parentage; first ordained a priest; left the Catholic
Church, and took orders in the Church of England; left the English,
became a Unitarian, and settled to miscellaneous literary work; left an
autobiography which reveals an honest quest of light, but to the last in
doubt; he lives in literature by a sonnet "Night and Death" (1775-1841).
WHITE HORSE, name given to the figure of a horse on a hill-side,
formed by removing the turf, and showing the white chalk beneath; the
most famous is one at Uffington, in Berkshire, alleged to commemorate a
victory of King Alfred.
WHITE HOUSE, name popularly given to the official residence of the
President of the United States, being a building of freestone painted
WHITE LADY, a lady dressed in white fabled in popular mediaeval
legend to appear by day as well as at night in a house before the death
of some member of the family; was regarded as the ghost of some deceased
WHITE MOUNTAINS, a range of mountains in Maine and New Hampshire,
U.S., forming part of the Appalachian system; much frequented by tourists
on account of the scenery, which has won for it the name of the
"Switzerland of America"; Mount Washington, one of the hills, has a hotel
on the summit approached by a railway.
WHITE NILE, one of the two streams forming the Nile, which flows out
of the Albert Nyanza, and which unites with the Blue Nile from Abyssinia
WHITE SEA, a large inlet of the Arctic Ocean, in the N. of Russia,
which is entered by a long channel and branches inward into three bays;
it is of little service for navigation, being blocked with ice all the
year except in June, July, and August, and even when open encumbered with
floating ice, and often enveloped in mists at the same time.
WHITEBOYS, a secret Irish organisation that at the beginning of
George III.'s reign asserted their grievances by perpetrating agrarian
outrages; so called from the white smocks the members wore in their
WHITEFIELD, GEORGE, founder of Calvinistic Methodism, born at
Gloucester; was an associate of WESLEY (q. v.) at Oxford, and
afterwards as preacher of Methodism both in this country and America,
commanding crowded audiences wherever he went, and creating, in Scotland
particularly, a deep religious awakening, but who separated from Wesley
on the matter of election; died near Boston, U.S. (1714-1770).
WHITEHAVEN (18), a seaport of Cumberland, 38 m. SW. of Carlisle,
with coal and hematite iron mines in the neighbourhood; has
blast-furnaces, iron-works, and manufactures of various kinds, with a
considerable coasting traffic.
WHITELOCKE, BULSTRODE, a statesman of the Commonwealth, born in
London; studied law at the Middle Temple: sat in the Long Parliament, and
was moderate in his zeal for the popular side; at the Restoration his
name was included in the Act of Oblivion, but he took no part afterwards
in public affairs; left "Memorials" of historical value (1605-1675).
WHITGIFT, JOHN, archbishop of Canterbury, born at Great Grimsby; was
educated at Cambridge, and became Fellow and Master of Pembroke College;
escaped persecution under Queen Mary, and on the accession of Elizabeth
was ordained a priest; after a succession of preferments, both as a
theologian and an ecclesiastic, became archbishop in 1583; attended Queen
Elizabeth on her deathbed, and crowned James I.; was an Anglican prelate
to the backbone, and specially zealous against the Puritans;
contemplated, with no small apprehension, the accession of James, "in
terror of a Scotch mist coming down on him with this new Majesty from the
land of Knox, or Nox, Chaos, and Company"; his last words were, with
uplifted hands and eyes, a prayer for the Church, uttered in King James's
WHITHORN, a small town in Wigtownshire, 12 m. S. of Wigtown,
celebrated as the spot where St. Ninian planted Christianity in Scotland,
and founded a church to St. Martin in 397.
WHITMAN, WALT, the poet of "Democracy," born in Long Island, U.S.,
of parents of mingled English and Dutch blood; was a large-minded,
warm-hearted man, who led a restless life, and had more in him than he
had training to unfold either in speech or act; a man eager, had he known
how, to do service in the cause of his much-loved mankind; wrote "Leaves
of Grass," "Drum-Taps," and "Two Rivulets" (1819-1892).
WHITNEY, ELI, an American inventor, born in Massachusetts; invented
the cotton-gin, a machine for cleaning seed-cotton, and became a
manufacturer of firearms, by which he realised a large fortune
WHITNEY, WILLIAM DWIGHT, American philologist, born in
Massachusetts; studied at Yale College, where he became professor of
Sanskrit, in which he was a proficient, and to the study of which he
largely contributed; has done much for the science of language
WHITSUNDAY, the seventh Sunday after Easter, a festival day of the
Church kept in commemoration of the descent of the Holy Ghost.
WHITTIER, JOHN GREENLEAF, the American "Quaker Poet," born at
Haverhill, in Massachusetts, the son of a poor farmer; wrought, like
Burns, at field work, and acquired a loving sympathy with Nature, natural
people, and natural scenes; took to journalism at length, and became a
keen abolitionist and the poet-laureate of abolition; his poems are few
and fugitive (1807-1893).
WHITTINGTON, SIR RICHARD, Lord Mayor of London, born at Pauntley,
Gloucestershire; came to London, prospered in business, was elected Lord
Mayor thrice over, and knighted; this is the Whittington of the nursery
tale, "Dick Whittington and his Cat" (1538-1623).
WHITWORTH, SIR JOSEPH, eminent mechanician, born at Stockport; the
rival of Lord Armstrong in the invention of ordnance; invented artillery
of great range and accuracy; was made a baronet in 1869 (1803-1887).
WHYTE-MELVILLE, GEORGE JOHN, novelist of the sporting-field, born at
Mount Melville, near St. Andrews; entered the army, and for a time served
in it; met his death while hunting (1821-1878).
WICK (8), county-town of Caithness, on Wick River, 161 m. NE. of
Inverness, is the chief seat of the herring fishery in Scotland; Wick
proper, with its suburbs Louisburgh and Boathaven, is on the N. of the
river, and Pultneytown on the S.; has a few manufactures, with
distilleries and breweries.
WICKED BIBLE, an edition of the Bible with the word _not_ omitted
from the Seventh Commandment, for issuing which in 1632 the printers were
fined and the impression destroyed.
WICKLOW (61), a maritime county, with a capital of the name in
Leinster, Ireland; is in great part mountainous and barren; has mines and
quarries, and some fertile parts.
WICLIFFE, JOHN, or WYCLIF, the "Morning Star of the Reformation," born at
Hipswell, near Richmond, Yorkshire; studied at Oxford, and became Master
of Balliol in 1361, professor of Divinity in 1372, and rector of
Lutterworth in 1375; here he laboured and preached with such faithfulness
that the Church grew alarmed, and persecution set in, which happily,
however, proved scatheless, and only the more emboldened him in the work
of reform which he had taken up; and of that work the greatest was his
translation of the Bible from the Vulgate into the mother-tongue, at
which, with assistance from his disciples, he laboured for some 10 or 15
years, and which was finished in 1380; he may be said to have died in
harness, for he was struck with paralysis while standing before the altar
at Lutterworth on 29th December 1384, and died the last day of the year;
his remains were exhumed and burned afterwards, and the ashes thrown into
the river Swift close by the town, "and thence borne," says Andrew
Fuller, "into the main ocean, the emblem of his doctrine, which now is
dispersed all the world over" (1325-1384).
WIDDIN (14), a town on the right bank of the Danube, Bulgaria; is a
centre of industry and trade; was a strong place, but by decree of the
Berlin Congress in 1879 the fortress was demolished.
WIELAND, CHRISTOPH MARTIN, eminent German litterateur, born near
Biberach, a small village in Swabia, son of a pastor of the pietist
school; studied at Tuebingen; became professor of Philosophy at Erfurt,
and settled in Weimar in 1772 as tutor to the two sons of the Duchess
Amalia, where he by-and-by formed a friendship with Goethe and the other
members of the literary coterie who afterwards settled there; he wrote in
an easy and graceful style, and his best work is a heroic poem entitled
WIELICZKA (6), a town in Austrian Galicia, near Cracow, famous for
its salt mines, which have been wrought continuously since 1250, the
galleries of which extend to more than 50 m. in length, and the annual
output of which is over 50,000 tons.
WIER, JOHANN, physician, born in North Brabant; was distinguished as
the first to attack the belief in witchcraft, and the barbarous treatment
to which suspects were subjected; the attack was treated as profane, and
provoked the hostility of the clergy, and it would have cost him his life
if he had not been protected by Wilhelm IV., Duke of Juelich and Cleves,
whose physician he was (1516-1566).
WIERTZ, ANTOINE, a Belgian painter, born at Dinant, did a great
variety of pictures on a variety of subjects, some of them on a large
scale, and all in evidence of a high ideal of his profession, and an
original genius for art (1806-1865).
WIESBADEN (65), capital of Hesse-Nassau, a famous German
watering-place, abounding in hot springs, 5 m. NW. of Mainz; has a number
of fine buildings and fine parade grounds, picture-gallery, museum, and
large library; is one of the best-frequented spas in Europe, and is
annually visited by 60,000 tourists or invalids; it was famed for its
springs among the old Romans.
WIFE OF BATH, one of the pilgrims in Chaucer's "Canterbury Tales."
WIGAN (55), a town in Lancashire, 18 m. NW. of Manchester, in the
centre of a large coal-field; cottons are the staple manufactures; is a
place of ancient date, and has some fine buildings.
WIGHT, ISLE OF, an island in the S. of England, included in
Hampshire, from which it is separated by the channel of the SOLENT
(q. v.); it is of triangular shape, is 23 m. of utmost length, and
about 14 m. of utmost breadth; it is traversed by a range of chalk downs
from E. to W.; the soil is fertile, especially in the E.; the scenery
rich and varied, and the climate charming; Newport is the capital in the
centre; near Cowes is Osborne House, the summer residence of Queen
WIGTOWNSHIRE (36), the most southerly county in Scotland, in the SW.
of which the largest town is Stranraer, and the county town Wigtown; it
is an agricultural county, and largely pastoral.
WILBERFORCE, SAMUEL, English prelate, born at Clapham, third son of
the succeeding; entered Oriel College, Oxford, at 18, where he
distinguished himself by his powers of debate; took holy orders, and rose
to eminence in the Church; was made Bishop of Oxford in 1845, and of
Winchester in 1869; was a High Churchman of the pure Anglican type, and
equally opposed to Romanism and Nonconformity; shone in society by his
wit and powers of conversation; Carlyle often "exchanged pleasant
dialogues with him, found him dexterous, stout and clever, far from being
a bad man"; "I do not hate him," he said to Froude one day, "near so much
as I fear I ought to do"; he found him "really of a religious nature,"
and secretly in sympathy with himself on religious matters; was killed by
a fall from his horse; he was popularly known by the sobriquet of "Soapy
WILBERFORCE, WILLIAM, eminent philanthropist, born at Hull, son of a
wealthy merchant; attended St. John's College, Cambridge, at 17;
represented his native town in Parliament as soon as he was of age; he
was early and deeply impressed with the inhumanity of the slave-trade,
and to achieve its abolition became the ruling passion of his life; with
that object he introduced a bill for its suppression in 1789, but it was
not till 1801 he carried the Commons with him, and he had to wait six
years longer before the House of Lords supported his measure and the
Emancipation Act was passed; he retired into private life in 1825, and
died three days after the vote of 20 millions to purchase the freedom of
the West Indian slaves; he was an eminently religious man of the
Evangelical school; wrote "Practical View of Christianity" (1759-1833).
WILD, JONATHAN, an English villain, who for housebreaking was
executed in 1725, and the hero of Fielding's novel of the name; he had
been a detective; was hanged amid execration on the part of the mob at
WILDERNESS, a district covered with brushwood in Virginia, U.S.,
the scene of a two days' terrible conflict between the Federals and the
Confederates on the 5th and 6th May 1864.
WILDFIRE, MADGE, a character in the "Heart of Midlothian," who,
being seduced, had, in her misery under a sense of her crime, gone crazy.
WILFRID, ST., a Saxon bishop of York, born in Northumbria; brought
up at Lindisfarne; had a checkered life of it; is celebrated in legend
for his success in converting pagans, and is usually represented in the
act; _d_. 709.
WILHELMINA I., queen of the Netherlands, daughter of William III.,
and who ascended the throne on his decease in November 1890; her mother,
a sister of the Duchess of Albany, acted as regent during her minority,
and she became of age on the 11th August 1898, when she was installed as
sovereign amid the enthusiasm of her people; _b_. 1880.
WILHELMSHAVEN (13), the chief naval port of Germany, on Jahde Bay,
43 m. NW. of Bremen.
WILKES, CHARLES, American naval officer; made explorations in the
Southern Ocean in 1861; boarded on the high seas the British mail-steamer
_Trent_, and carried off two Confederate commissioners accredited to
France, who were afterwards released on the demand of the British
WILKES, JOHN, a notable figure in the English political world of the
18th century, born in Clerkenwell, son of a distiller; was elected M.P.
for Aylesbury in 1761; started a periodical called the _North Briton_, in
No. 45 of which he published an offensive libel, which led to his arrest
and imprisonment in the Tower, from which he was released--on the ground
that the general warrant on which he was apprehended was illegal--amid
general rejoicing among the people; he was afterwards prosecuted for an
obscene production, an "Essay on Women," and outlawed for non-appearance;
he sought an asylum in France, and on his return was elected for
Middlesex, but instead of being allowed to sit was committed to prison;
this treatment made him the object of popular favour; he was elected Lord
Mayor of London, re-elected for Middlesex, and at length allowed to take
his seat in the House; he was for years the cause of popular tumults, the
watchword of which was "Wilkes and Liberty"; the cause of civil liberty
certainly owes something to him and to the popular agitations which an
interest in him stirred up (1727-1797).
WILKIE, SIR DAVID, painter, born at Cults, Fife; executed a great
many pictures depicting homely subjects, which were very popular, and are
generally well known by the engravings of them, such as the "Rent Day,"
"The Penny Wedding," "Reading the Will," &c., which were followed by
others in a more ambitious style, and less appreciated, as well as
WILKINS, JOHN, bishop of Chester, born in Northamptonshire; married
Oliver Cromwell's sister; wrote mathematical treatises, a curious one in
particular, "Discovery of a New World," and was one of the founders of
the Royal Society (1614-1672).
WILKINSON, SIR JOHN, Egyptologist, born In Westmorland; studied at
Oxford; explored the antiquities of Egypt, and wrote largely on the
WILL, FREEDOM OF THE, the doctrine that in and under the dominion of
pure reason the will is free, and not free otherwise; that in this
element the Will "reigns unquestioned and by Divine right"; only in minds
in which volition is treated as a synonym of Desire does this doctrine
admit of debate.
WILLEMS, JAN FRANS, Dutch poet and scholar, born near Antwerp;
translated "Reynard the Fox" into Flemish, and did much to encourage the
Flemings to preserve and cultivate their mother-tongue (1793-1846).
WILLIAM I., THE CONQUEROR, king of England, born at Falaise; became
Duke of Normandy by the death of his father; being an illegitimate son
had to establish his power with the sword; being the cousin of Edward the
Confessor was nominated by him his successor to the English throne, which
being usurped by Harold, he invaded England and defeated Harold at Senlac
in 1066 and assumed the royal power, which he established over the length
and breadth of the country in 1068; he rewarded his followers with grants
of land and lordships over them, subject to the crown; the DOOMSDAY
BOOK (q. v.) was compiled by his order, and the kingdom brought
into closer relation with the Church of Rome, his adviser in Church
matters being LANFRANC, ARCHBISHOP OF CANTERBURY (q. v.); died
by a fall from his horse when suppressing rebellion in Normandy, and was
buried at Caen. He was, as characterised by Carlyle, "in rude outline a
true God-made king, of most flashing discernment, of most strong
lion-heart--in whom, as it were, within a frame of oak and iron the gods
had planted the soul of 'a man of genius' ... the essential element, as
of all such men, not scorching fire (merely), but shining illuminative
light ... the most sure-eyed perception of what is what on this God's
earth." His invasion of England is known as the Norman Conquest, and it
involved the introduction of the feudal system and Norman manners in the
habits and speech of the English people (1027-1087).
WILLIAM II., king of England, surnamed Rufus or Ruddy, born in
Normandy, third son of William I.; succeeded his father in 1087; had to
face a rebellion, headed by Bishop Odo, in favour of his eldest brother,
Robert, Duke of Normandy, which he suppressed by favour of the mass of
the people, to whom he made promises which he did not keep, for he proved
a stern and exacting ruler; his energy was great, but was frequently
spasmodic; he added Normandy to his dominion by compact with Robert, who
went on Crusade, compelled Malcolm of Scotland to do homage for his
kingdom, conducted several campaigns against the Welsh, and had a
long-continued wrangle with Archbishop Anselm, virtually in defence of
the royal prerogative against the claims of the Church, for a humorous
account of the meaning of which see Carlyle's "Past and Present," Book
iv. chap. i.; he was accidentally shot while hunting in the New Forest by
Walter Tirel, and buried in Winchester Cathedral, but without any
religious service; in his reign the Crusades began, and Westminster Hall
was built (1066-1100).
WILLIAM III., king of England, born at The Hague, son of William
II., Prince of Orange, by Mary, the daughter of Charles I.; during a
contest on the part of the United Provinces with Louis XIV. was, in 1672,
elected Stadtholder, and by his valour and wisdom brought the war to an
end in 1678; married his cousin Mary, daughter of James II.; being
invited to England, landed with a large army at Torbay, and on the flight
of James to France, he and Mary were proclaimed king and queen of Great
Britain and Ireland in 1689; the Scotch and the Irish offered resistance
in the interest of the exiled monarch, but the former were defeated at
Killiecrankie in 1689, and the latter at the battle of the Boyne in 1690;
he was an able man and ruler, but his reign was troubled by an
interminable feud with France, and by intrigues on behalf of James both
at home and abroad; he died by a fall from his horse at Kensington just
as a great war with France was impending; he was through life the
adversary of the covetous schemes of Louis, and before his death he had
prepared the materials of that coalition which, under Marlborough and
Prince Eugene, brought Louis to the brink of ruin; his reign forms one of
the great epochs in the history of England, and is known as the
WILLIAM IV., king of England, known as the "sailor king," born in
Buckingham Palace, the third son of George III.; entered the navy in
1779; saw service under Rodney and Nelson, but practically retired in
1789, as from insubordination he had to do, though he was afterwards
promoted to be Admiral of the Fleet, and even Lord High Admiral, and
continued to take great interest in naval affairs; after living, as Duke
of Clarence, from 1792 to 1816 with Mrs. Jordan, the actress, by whom he
had 10 children, he married in 1810 Adelaide, eldest daughter of the Duke
of Saxe-Meiningen; on the death of the Duke of York in 1827 became
heir-presumptive, and on the death of George IV. in 1830 succeeded to the
throne; his reign was distinguished by the passing of the first Reform
Bill in 1832, the abolition of slavery in the colonies in 1833, the
reform of the poor-laws in 1834, and the Municipal Reform Act in 1835;
died at Windsor, and was succeeded by his niece. Queen Victoria
WILLIAM I., emperor of Germany, born at Berlin, second son of
Frederick William III. of Prussia, and brother of Frederick William IV.,
his predecessor on the Prussian throne; was bred from boyhood to military
life, having received his first commission at the age of 10; took part in
the war of liberation that preceded the fall of Napoleon, and received
his baptism of fire on 14th February 1814; visited England in 1844, and
again in 1848, and returned prepossessed in favour of constitutional
government, which he found the king had already conceded in his absence;
in 1858 he was appointed regent owing to his brother's incapacity, and on
2nd February 1861 he succeeded to the throne, having previously made the
acquaintance of Moltke in 1818 and of Bismarck in 1834; on his accession,
while professing all due respect to the representatives of the people, he
announced his intention to maintain to the uttermost all his rights as
king, and this gave rise to a threat of insurrection, but a war with
Denmark, which issued in the recovery of the German duchies of
Sleswick-Holstein, led to an outburst of loyalty, and this was deepened
by the publication of the project of Bismarck to unite all Germany under
the crown of Prussia; this provoked a war with Austria, which lasted only
seven weeks, and ended with the consent of the latter to the projected
unification of the other States, and the establishment of a confederation
of these under the headship of the Prussian king, a unification which was
consolidated into an Imperial one at the close of the Franco-German War,
when, on the 18th January 1871, the Prussian king was proclaimed emperor
of Germany in the palace of Versailles; the reign which followed was a
peaceful one, and the pledge of peace to the rest of Europe; the emperor
was a man of robust frame, of imposing figure, of temperate habits, of
firm purpose, conspicuous courage, and devoted with his whole heart to
the welfare of his people (1797-1888).
WILLIAM II., emperor of Germany, born at Berlin, grandson of the
preceding, and son of Frederick III., whom he succeeded as emperor in
1888; was trained from early boyhood for kinghood, and on his accession
to the throne gave evidence of the excellent schooling he had received to
equip him for the high post he was called to fill; he showed that the old
Hohenzollern blood still flowed in his veins, and that he was minded to
be every inch a king; one of the first acts of his reign was to compel
the resignation of Bismarck, as it was his intention to reign alone; that
he has proved himself equal to his task events since have fully
justified, and it is hoped it will be seen that his influence on public
affairs will lead to the advantage of the German people and the peace of
the world; he is by his mother the grandson of Queen Victoria, and the
relationship is full of promise for the union throughout the world of the
Teutonic peoples, who have already achieved so much for the good of the
race; _b_. 1859.
WILLIAM THE LION, king of Scotland, grandson of David I., and
brother of Malcolm IV., whom he succeeded in 1165, and whose surname is
supposed to have been derived from his substitution of the lion for the
dragon on the arms of Scotland; was taken captive when invading England
at Alnwick Castle in 1174; sent prisoner to Falaise, in Normandy, but
liberated on acknowledgment of vassalage to the English king, a claim
which Richard I. surrendered on payment by the Scots of 10,000 marks to
aid him in the Crusade; was the first king of Scotland to form an
alliance with France; died at Stirling after a reign of 49 years
WILLIAM THE SILENT, Prince of Orange, a cadet of the noble house of
Nassau, the first Stadtholder of the Netherlands, a Protestant by birth;
he was brought up a Catholic, but being at heart more a patriot than a
Catholic, he took up arms in the cause of his country's freedom, and did
not rest till he had virtually freed it from the Spanish yoke, which was
then the dominant Catholic power; his enemies procured his assassination
in the end, and he was murdered by Belthazar Gerard, at Delft; he was
brought up at the court of Charles V., where "his circumspect demeanour
procured him the surname of Silent, but under the cold exterior he
concealed a busy, far-sighted intellect, and a generous, upright, daring
WILLIAMS, ISAAC, Tractarian, born in Wales; educated at Oxford; got
acquainted with Keble; wrote religious poetry and Tract LXXX. on "Reserve
in Religious Teaching" (1802-1865).
WILLIAMS, JOHN, missionary and martyr, born near London; brought up
an ironmonger; offered his services to the London Missionary Society; was
sent out in 1816 to the Society Islands; laboured with conspicuous
success among the natives; came home in 1834, and after four years
returned, but was murdered at Erromango in the New Hebrides, and his body
eaten by the cannibals (1796-1839).
WILLIAMS, SIR MONIER MONIER-, Sanskrit scholar, born at Bombay;
appointed Boden professor of Sanskrit at Oxford, 1860; author of a
Sanskrit Grammar and Lexicon, and projected the founding of the Indian
Institute; _b_. 1819.
WILLIAMS, ROGER, founder of the State of Rhode Island, U.S., born
in Wales; being a Puritan, fled the country to escape persecution, and
settled in New England, where he hoped to enjoy the religious freedom he
was denied at home, but was received with disfavour by the earlier
settlers as, from his extreme views, a "troubler of Israel," and obliged
to separate himself and establish a colony of his own, which he did at
Providence by favour of an Indian tribe he had made friends of, and under
a charter from the Long Parliament of England, obtained through Sir Henry
Vane, where he extended to others the toleration he desired for himself;
he was characterised by Milton, who knew him, as "that noble champion of
religious liberty" (1600-1683).
WILLIAMS, ROWLAND, English clergyman, born in Flintshire; was a
prominent member of the Broad Church party; was condemned, though the
judgment was reversed, by the Court of Arches, for a paper contributed to
the famous "Essays and Reviews"; wrote "Rational Godliness,"
"Christianity and Hinduism," &c. (1817-1870).
WILLIBROD, ST., the "Apostle of the Frisians," born in Northumbria;
was the chief of a company of 12 monks who went as missionaries from
Ireland to Friesland, where they were welcomed by Pepin d'Heristal, and
afterwards favoured by his son, Charles Martel; he founded an abbey near
Treves; when he was about to baptize the Duke of Friesland, it is said
the duke turned away when he was told his ancestors were in hell, saying
he would rather be with them there than in heaven without them (658-739).
WILLIS, PARKER, American writer and journalist; had travelled much
abroad, and published his experiences; among his writings "Pencillings by
the Way," "Inklings of Adventure," "People I have Met," &c. (1806-1867)
WILLOUGHBY, SIR HUGH, early Arctic voyager; was sent out in 1553
with three vessels by a company of London merchants on a voyage of
discovery, but the vessels were separated by a storm in the North Seas,
and not one of them returned, only Richard Challoner, the captain of one
of them, found his way to Moscow, and opened up a trade with Russia and
this country; the ships, with the dead bodies of their crews, and the
journal of their commander, were found by some fishermen the year after.
WILLS, WILLIAM JOHN, Australian explorer, born at Totnes;
accompanied O'Hara Burke from the extreme S. to the extreme N. of the
continent, but died from starvation on the return journey two days before
his leader (1834-1860).
WILMINGTON (61), a large and handsome city and port in Delaware, 25
m. SW. of Philadelphia, with extensive manufactures; also the name of the
largest city (20) in North Carolina, with considerable manufactures and
trade; was a chief Confederate port during the Civil War.
WILSON, ALEXANDER, ornithologist, born at Paisley; son of a weaver,
bred to the loom; began his literary career as a poet; imprisoned for a
lampoon on a Paisley notability, went on his release to America
unfriended, with only his fowling-piece in his hand, and a few shillings
in his pocket; led an unsettled life for a time; acquired the arts of
drawing, colouring, and etching, and, so accomplished, commenced his
studies on the ornithology of America, and prevailed upon a publisher in
Philadelphia to undertake an exhaustive work which he engaged to produce
on the subject; the first volume appeared in 1808, and the seventh in
1813, on the publication of which he met his death from a cold he caught
from swimming a river in pursuit of a certain rare bird (1766-1813).
WILSON, SIR DANIEL, archaeologist, was born in Edinburgh, became in
1853 professor of English Literature at Toronto; wrote "Memorials of
Edinburgh," "Prehistoric Annals of Scotland," "Prehistoric Man," &c.
WILSON, SIR ERASMUS, English surgeon, a great authority on skin
diseases, and devoted much time to the study of Egyptian antiquities; it
was at his instance that the famous Cleopatra's Needle was brought to
England; he was liberal in endowments for the advance of medical science
WILSON, GEORGE, chemist, born in Edinburgh, younger brother of Sir
Daniel; was appointed professor of Technology in Edinburgh University;
was eminent as a popular lecturer on science, and an enthusiast in
whatever subject he took up (1819-1859).
WILSON, HORACE HAYMAN, Orientalist, born in London; studied
medicine; went to India as a surgeon; mastered Sanskrit, and became Boden
professor at Oxford (1786-1860).
WILSON, JOHN, Indian missionary, born near Lauder, educated at
Edinburgh; missionary at Bombay from 1828 to his death--from 1843 in
connection with the Free Church of Scotland; from his knowledge of the
languages and religions of India, and his sagacity, was held in high
WILSON, JOHN, the well-known "Christopher North," born in Paisley,
son of a manufacturer, who left him a fortune of L50,000; studied at
Glasgow and Oxford; a man of powerful physique, and distinguished as an
athlete as well as a poet; took up his abode in the Lake District, and
enjoyed the society of Wordsworth, Coleridge, and Southey; wrote two
poems, the "Isle of Palms," and the "City of the Plague"; lost his
fortune, and came to settle in Edinburgh; was called to the Scottish bar,
but never practised; became editor of _Blackwood's Magazine_, and was in
1820 elected over Sir William Hamilton professor of moral philosophy in
Edinburgh University; his health began to fail in 1840; resigned his
professorship in 1851, and received a pension from the Crown of L300; he
is described by Carlyle as "a tall, ruddy, broad-shouldered figure, with
plenteous blonde hair, and bright blue flashing eyes, and as he walked
strode rapidly along; had much nobleness of heart, and many traits of
noble genius, but the central _tie-beam_ seemed always wanting; a good,
grand ruined soul, that never would be great, or indeed _be_ anything"
WILTON, market-town in Wiltshire, 3 m. NW. of Salisbury; was the
ancient capital of Wessex, and gave name to the county; its church,
erected by Lord Herbert of Lea in 1844, is a rich Lombardic structure,
with a campanile 108 ft. high.
WILTSHIRE or WILTS (264), an inland county in SW. of England,
with Gloucestershire on the N. and Dorset on the S., 54 m. from N. to S.
and 37 m. from E. to W.; is largely an agricultural and pastoral county;
is flat, rising into hills in the N., and is broken by downs and rich
valleys in the S., except on Salisbury Plain; sheep-breeding and
dairy-farming are the chief industries, and it is famous for cheese and
WIMBLEDON (25), a suburb of London, 71/2 m. to the SW., on a common
used by the volunteers from 1860 to 1889 for rifle practice.
WINCHESTER (19), an ancient city of Hampshire, and the county town,
60 m. SW. of London, on the right bank of the Itchen; is a cathedral
city, with a noted large public school; was at one time the capital of
England; the cathedral dates from the 11th century, but it has
subsequently undergone considerable extensions and alterations; the
school was founded by William of Wykeham in 1387.
WINCKELMANN, JOHANN JOACHIM, great art critic, born at Stendal, in
Prussian Saxony, of poor parents; was a student from his boyhood, and
early devoted especially to archaeology and the study of the antique;
became a Roman Catholic on the promise of an appointment in Rome, where
he would have full scope to indulge his predilections, and became
librarian to Cardinal Albani there; his great work was "Geschichte der
Kunst des Alterthums" (the "History of Ancient Art"), in particular that
of Greece, which proved epoch-making, and the beginning of a new era in
the study of art in general; he was assassinated in a hotel at Trieste on
his way to Vienna by a fellow-traveller to whom he had shown some of his
valuables, and the German world was shocked (1717-1768).
WINDERMERE, a lake on the borders of Westmorland and Lancashire, the
largest in England, 101/2 m. long from N. to S., and 1 m. broad; is 240 ft.
deep and 134 ft. above sea-level; is amid beautiful scenery, and near it
is Rydal Mount, long the residence of Wordsworth.
WINDHAM, WILLIAM, English statesman, born of an ancient Norfolk
family; was opposed to the American War; took part in the impeachment of
Warren Hastings; was Secretary at War under Pitt; advocated the removal
of Catholic disabilities, but was opposed to Parliamentary reform; has
been described by his contemporaries as the model both physically and
mentally of an English gentleman, able and high minded (1780-1810).
WINDISCHGRAeTZ, PRINCE, Austrian field-marshal; took part in the
campaigns against Napoleon, and in 1848 suppressed the revolution at
Prague and Vienna; failed against the Hungarians, and was superseded
WINDSOR (12), a town in Berkshire, on the right bank of the Thames,
opposite Eton, and about 22 m. W. of London, with a castle which from
early Plantagenet times has been the principal residence of the kings of
WINDWARD ISLANDS (150), a group of the West Indies, the Lesser
Antilles, belonging to Britain, extending from Martinique to Trinidad.
WINDWARD PASSAGE, a channel leading into the Caribbean Sea, between
the islands of Cuba and Hayti.
WINER, GEORGE BENEDICT, New Testament scholar, born at Leipzig, and
professor there; best known for his work on the New Testament Greek
WINIFRED, ST., a British maiden who was decapitated by Prince
Caradoc in 650; where her head rolled off tradition says a spring
instantly gushed forth, the famous Holywell in Flintshire; is represented
in art carrying her head.
WINKELRIED, ARNOLD VON, a brave Swiss who, on the field of Sempach,
on 9th June 1386, rushed on the lances of the opposing Austrians, and so
opened a way for his compatriots to dash through and win the day.
WINKLE. See RIP VAN WINKLE.
WINNIPEG (25), formerly Fort Garry, the capital of Manitoba, at the
junction of the Assiniboine with the Red River, over 1400 m. NW. of
Montreal; is a well-built town, with several public buildings and all
modern appliances; stands on the Pacific Railway; is a busy trading
centre, and is growing rapidly.
WINNIPEG, LAKE, a lake in Manitoba, 40 m. N. of the city, 280 m.
long, 57 m. broad, and covering an area of over 8000 sq. m.; it drains an
area twice as large as France; the Saskatchewan flows into it, and the
Nelson flows out.
WINSTANLEY, HENRY, English engineer; erected a lighthouse on the
Eddystone Rock in 1696, and completed it in four years; it was built of
timber, and had not much strength; he perished in it in a storm in 1703.
WINT, PETER DE, water-colourist, born in Staffordshire, of Dutch
descent; famed for paintings of English scenery and rustic life
WINTER KING, name given by the Germans to Frederick V., husband of
Elizabeth, daughter of James I., his Winter Queen, who was elected king
of Bohemia by the Protestants in 1619, and compelled to resign in 1620.
WINTHROP, JOHN, "Father of Massachusetts," born in Suffolk; studied
at Trinity College; headed a Puritan colony from Yarmouth to Salem, and
was governor of the settlement at Boston till his death; was a pious and
tolerant man; left a "Journal" (1581-1649).
WISCONSIN (1,686), one of the Central States of North America,
nearly as large as England and Wales, and situated between Lake Superior
and Michigan; the surface is chiefly of rolling prairie, and the soil
fertile; yields cereals, sugar, hops, hemp, and large quantities of
lumber from the forests; lead, iron, copper, and silver are among its
mineral resources; it abounds in beautiful lakes; the Wisconsin and the
Chippewa are the chief rivers, tributaries of the Mississippi; and
Madison (the capital), Milwaukee, and La Crosse are the chief towns.
WISDOM OF JESUS. See ECCLESIASTICUS.
WISDOM OF SOLOMON, one of the most beautiful books in the Apocrypha,
written at the close of the 2nd century B.C. by one who knew both the
Greek language and Greek philosophy, to commend the superiority to this
philosophy of the divine wisdom revealed to the Jews. Its general aim, as
has been said, is "to show, alike from philosophy and history, as against
the materialists of the time, that the proper goal of life was not mere
existence, however long, or pleasure of any sort, but something nobly
intellectual and moral, and that the pious Israelite was on the surest
path to its attainment."
WISEMAN, NICHOLAS, cardinal and Roman Catholic Archbishop of
Westminster, born at Seville, of Irish parents; studied at a Roman
Catholic college near Durham and the English college at Rome, of which he
became rector; lectured in London in 1836 on the Doctrines of the
Catholic Church, and in 1840 became vicar-apostolic, first in the central
district of England, then of the London district in 1846, and was in 1850
named Archbishop of Westminster by the Pope; this was known in England as
the "papal aggression," which raised a storm of opposition in the
country, but this storm Wiseman, now cardinal, succeeded very
considerably in allaying by a native courtesy of manner which commended
him to the regard of the intelligent and educated classes of the
community; he was a scholarly man, and a vigorous writer and orator
WISHART, GEORGE, a Scottish martyr, born in Forfarshire; began life
as a schoolmaster; was charged with heresy for teaching the Greek New
Testament; left the country and spent some time on the Continent; on his
return boldly professed and preached the Reformation doctrines, and had
the celebrated John Knox, who was tutor in the district, for a disciple
among others; he was arrested in Haddingtonshire in January and burned at
St. Andrews in March 1546; Knox would fain have accompanied him on his
arrest, but was paternally dissuaded by the gentle martyr; "Go home to
your bairns" (pupils), said he; "ane is sufficient for a sacrifice."
WISMAR (15), a seaport of Mecklenburg-Schwerin, on the Baltic; has a
number of quaint old buildings, various manufactures, and an active
WITCH OF ENDOR, a divining woman consulted by King Saul, who
affected to call up the spirit of Samuel, who foretold his defeat and
WITENAGEMOT (assembly of the wise), name given to the national
council or Parliament of England in Anglo-Saxon times, agreeably to whose
decisions the affairs of the kingdom were managed; it consisted of the
bishops, royal vassals, and thanes.
WITHER, GEORGE, poet, born at Arlesford, in Hampshire, and educated
at Magdalen College, Oxford; was imprisoned for his first poem, a satire,
"Abuses Stript and Whipt," in 1613; his subsequent productions betray
true poetic inspiration, and special passages in them are much admired;
he was a religious poet, and is much belauded by Charles Lamb; in the
Civil War he espoused the Puritan side, and in his zeal in its behalf
raised a troop of horse (1588-1667).
WITHERSPOON, JOHN, Scottish theologian, born at Tester; was minister
at Paisley; became president of the college at New Jersey, U.S.; died at
Princeton; wrote "Ecclesiastic Characteristics" against the Moderates,
also on justification and regeneration (1722-1794).
WITSIUS, HERMANN, Dutch theologian; became professor at Leyden;
wrote on what are in old orthodox theology called the "Covenants," of
which there were reckoned two, one of works, under the Mosaic system,
and the other of grace, under the Christian (1636-1708).
WITTEKIND, leader of the Saxon struggle against Charlemagne;
annihilated the Frankish army in 783, in retaliation for which
Charlemagne executed 4500 Saxons he had taken prisoners, which roused the
entire Saxon people to arms, and led to a drawn battle at Detmold, upon
which Wittekind accepted baptism, and was promoted to a dukedom by the
Frankish king; he fell in battle with Gerold, a Swabian duke, in 807.
WITTENBERG (13), a town in Prussian Saxony, on the right bank of the
Elbe, 50 m. SW. of Berlin; was the capital of the electorate of Saxony,
and a stronghold of the Reformers; is famous in the history of Luther,
and contains his tomb; it was on the door of the Schlosskirche of which
he nailed his famous 95 theses, and at the Elster Gate of which he burned
the Pope's bull, "the people looking on and shouting, all Europe looking
WIZARD OF THE NORTH, name given to Sir Walter Scott, from the magic
power displayed in his writings.
WODEN, the German and Anglo-Saxon name for ODIN (q. v.).
WODROW, ROBERT, Scottish Church historian, born at Glasgow; studied
at the University, became librarian, and settled as minister at Eastwood,
Renfrewshire; was diligent with his pen; left 50 volumes of MSS., only
one of which was published in his lifetime, "History of the Sufferings of
the Church of Scotland from the Restoration to the Revolution," the rest
having been in part published by several antiquarian societies since
WOFFINGTON, PEG, actress, born in Dublin, where she made her first
appearance in 1737, and in London at Covent Garden in 1740, in a style
which carried all hearts by storm; she was equally charming in certain
male characters as in female; her character was not without reproach, but
she had not a little of that charity which covereth a multitude of sins,
in the practice of which, after her retirement in 1757, she ended her
WOIWODE, name at one time of an elective prince among the Slavs,
originally one chosen in some emergency; superseded by Hospodar in 1716.
WOKING (9), a small town in Surrey, 24 m. SW. of London; contains a
large cemetery with crematorium near it, and not far off is Bisley
Common, with shooting-butts for practice by the Volunteers.
WOLCOT, JOHN, better known by his pseudonym Peter Pindar, born in
Devonshire; bred to and practised medicine; took orders, and held office
in the Church; took eventually to writing satires and lampoons, which
spared no one, and could not be bribed into silence; was blind for some
years before he died (1738-1819).
WOLF, FRIEDRICH AUGUST, great classical scholar, born near
Nordhausen; studied at Goettingen; was professor of Philology at Halle;
became world-famous for his theory of the Homeric poems; he maintains, in
his "Prolegomena ad Homerum," that the "Iliad" and the "Odyssey" were
originally a body of independent ballads handed down by oral tradition,
and gradually collected into two groups, which finally appeared each as
one, bearing the name of Homer, who, he allows, was _probably_ the first
to attempt to weave them severally into one; the "Prolegomena" was
published in 1735, and its appearance caused a wide-spread sensation, and
gave rise to a controversy which maintains itself to the present time
WOLFE, CHARLES, author of the "Burial of Sir John Moore," born in
Dublin; became an Irish clergyman; died of consumption (1791-1823).
WOLFE, JAMES, major-general, born in Kent, son of a
lieutenant-general, who served under Marlborough; was present at the
battles of Dettingen, Fontenoy, Falkirk, and Culloden, and served in the
expedition against Rochefort, which it was believed proved disastrous
because his counsel was not followed; this circumstance attracted the
attention of Pitt, who appointed him a command in Canada; here he
distinguished himself first at the siege of Louisburg, and then by the
capture of Quebec, where he fell at the moment of victory; he lived to
hear the cry "They run," and eagerly asked "Who run?" and being told the
French, exclaimed, "I thank God, and die contented" (1727-1759).
WOLFENBUeTTEL (13), an old town in Brunswick, 7 m. S. of Brunswick;
contains an old building, now rebuilt, being a library of vast extent and
rich in MSS.; has various manufactures.
WOLFF, JOHANN CHRISTIAN VON, German philosopher and mathematician,
born at Breslau; was appointed professor at Halle in 1707, but was in
1723 not only removed from his chair, but banished from Prussia by
Frederick William on account of his opinions, which, as fatalistic, were
deemed socially demoralising, but was recalled by Frederick the Great on
his accession, and afterwards promoted to the rank of baron of the
empire; he was a disciple of Leibnitz, and the father of the philosophy
that prevailed in Germany before the time of Kant; his merits as a
philosopher were threefold: he claimed for philosophy the entire field of
knowledge, he paid special attention to method in philosophical
speculation, and he first taught philosophy to express itself in German,
or made German the philosophical language (1679-1754).
WOLLASTON, WILLIAM, ethical and theological writer, born near
Stafford; wrote "Religion of Nature," a rationalistic work written in an
optimistic spirit (1659-1724).
WOLLASTON, WILLIAM HYDE, physicist and chemist, born in Norfolk,
grandson of preceding; made extensive discoveries in chemistry and
optics; invented the camera lucida and the goniometer.
WOLLSTONECRAFT, MARY. See GODWIN.
WOLSELEY, GARNET JOSEPH, LORD, field-marshal, born in co. Dublin, of
a Staffordshire family; entered the army in 1852; served in the Burmese
War of 1852-1853, in the Crimean War, where he was severely wounded, in
the Chinese War of 1860, and afterwards in Canada; commanded in the
Ashantee War in 1878, and received the thanks of Parliament, with a grant
of L25,000, for "courage, energy, and perseverance" in the conduct of it,
and after services in Natal, Egypt, and Ireland was made field-marshal in
1894, and commander-in-chief in 1895; _b_. 1833.
WOLSEY, THOMAS, cardinal, born at Ipswich, son of a well-to-do
grazier and wool-merchant; educated at Magdalen College, Oxford; entered
the Church early; gained the favour of Henry VII., and was promoted by
him for his services to the deanery of Lincoln; this was the first of a
series of preferments at the hands of royalty, which secured him one
bishopric after another until his revenue accruing therefrom equalled
that of the crown itself, which he spent partly in display of his rank
and partly in acts of munificence; of his acts of munificence the
founding of Christ Church College in the interest of learning was one,
and the presentation of Hampton Court Palace, which he had built, to the
king, was another; it was in the reign of Henry VIII. that he rose to
power, and to him especially he owed his honours; it was for his
services to him he obtained the chancellorship of the kingdom, and at his
suit that he obtained the cardinal's hat and other favours from the Pope;
this, though not the height of his ambition, was the limit of it, for he
soon learned how frail a reed is a prince's favour; he refused to
sanction his master's marriage with Anne Boleyn, and was driven from
power and bereft of all his possessions; finally, though restored to the
see of York, he was arrested on a charge of treason, took ill on the way
to London, and died at Leicester, with the words on his lips, "Had I but
served God as I have served the king, He would not have forsaken me in my
grey hairs" (1471-1530).
WOLVERHAMPTON (82), a town in Staffordshire, 121/2 m. NW. of
Birmingham, in the midst of coal and iron fields; the centre of a group
of towns engaged in different kinds of iron manufacture, locks and keys
the staple, and the metropolis of the Black Country.
WOMAN'S RIGHTS, claims on the part and in the behalf of women to a
status in society which will entitle them to the legal and social
privileges of men.
WOOD, SIR ANDREW, Scottish admiral, born in Largo, Fife; was
distinguished and successful in several naval engagements, chiefly in the
Forth, against the English in the reigns of James III. and James IV.;
received for his services the honour of knighthood and the village and
lands of Largo in fee; was an eccentric old admiral; is said to have had
a canal cut from his house to the church, and to have sailed thither in
his barge every Sunday; _d_. 1540.
WOOD, ANTHONY, antiquary, born at Oxford, and educated at Merton
College, Oxford; was a gentleman of independent means; wrote "History and
Antiquities of Oxford University," which appeared in 1674, and "Athenae
Oxonienses," which appeared in 1691, being an exact history of all the
writers and bishops educated at Oxford from 1500 to 1690 (1632-1695).
WOOD, SIR EVELYN, soldier, born in Essex; served in the Indian
Mutiny War, and received the V.C., also in the Ashanti, in the Zulu, in
the Transvaal (1880-1881) Wars, and in Egypt in 1882; _b_. 1838.
WOOD, MRS. HENRY (_nee_ Price), novelist, born in Worcestershire;
her best novels "The Channings" and "Mrs. Halliburton's Troubles," though
her most popular "East Lynne"; she wrote some thirty, all popular, and
deservedly so (1820-1887).
WOODEN HORSE, a gigantic horse of wood, within which Greek warriors
were concealed, and which the Trojans were persuaded to admit into their
city, to its ruin, on the pretext that it was an offering by the Greeks
to Pallas, to atone for their abstraction of her image from the citadel.
WOODSTOCK, a small market-town on the Glyme, 8 m. NW. of Oxford,
once a royal manor, near which is BLENHEIM PARK (q. v.).
WOOLNER, THOMAS, English sculptor, born at Hadleigh, in Suffolk;
sympathised with the Pre-Raphaelite movement; did a number of statues
(one of Bacon for Oxford), busts of famous contemporaries--Carlyle,
Darwin, Tennyson, &c.--and ideal works, such as Elaine, Ophelia,
Guinevere, &c.; was a poet as well as a sculptor (1826-1892).
WOOLSACK, the seat of the Lord Chancellor in the House of Lords, as
Speaker of the House, being a large square cushion of wool covered with
red cloth, without either back or arms.
WOOLSTON, THOMAS, an eccentric semi-deistical writer, born at
Northampton, who maintained a lifelong polemic against the literal truth
of the Bible, and insisted that the miraculous element in it must be
allegorically interpreted, with such obstinacy that he was in the end
subjected to imprisonment as a blasphemer, from which he was never
released, because he refused to recant (1669-1731).
WOOLWICH (40), a town in Kent, on the S. bank of the Thames, 9 m.
below London; is the chief military arsenal in the country; contains a
gun factory, ammunition factory, laboratory, &c., which employ 12,000
men, besides barracks for artillery, engineers, &c., covering an area 4
m. in circumference.
WORCESTER (42), the county town of Worcestershire, on the left bank
of the Severn, 26 m. SE. of Birmingham; a very ancient place, and a
handsome city, with a noble old Gothic cathedral; is famous for its blue
porcelain ware and other industries, particularly glove-making; was the
scene in 1651 of Cromwell's victory over the Royalists, which he called
his "crowning mercy."
WORCESTER (118), the second city of Massachusetts, U.S., a place of
busy industry, and with a flourishing trade.
WORCESTER, MARQUIS OF, inventor of the steam-engine, born probably
in the Strand; early gave himself to mechanical studies; was an ardent
Royalist; negotiated with the Irish Catholics on behalf of the king; was
discovered and imprisoned on a charge of treason, but his release being
procured by the king, he spent some time in exile; on his return he was
again imprisoned and then released; wrote an account of inventions
amounting to a hundred, "A Century of Inventions" as he called it, one of
which he described as "an admirable and most forcible way of driving up
water by fire" (1601-1667).
WORCESTERSHIRE, an agricultural and pastoral county in the valley of
the Severn, the N. part of which is the Black Country, rich in coal and
iron mines, with Dudley for capital, and the SW. occupied by the Malvern
Hills, while the S. is famous for its orchards and hop-gardens; it has
also extensive manufactures at Worcester, Kidderminster, Stourbridge, and
WORD, THE, or LOGOS, the name given by St. John to God as
existing from the beginning as in the fulness of time He manifested
Himself in Christ, or as at first what He revealed Himself at last.
WORDSWORTH, CHARLES, bishop of St. Andrews, born in Lambeth, studied
at Christ Church, Oxford; was private tutor to Gladstone and Manning,
Warden of Glenalmond College, Perthshire, and made bishop in 1852; was a
student of Shakespeare, and distinguished as a prelate for his zeal for
Church union in Scotland; he was a nephew of the poet (1805-1892).
WORDSWORTH, WILLIAM, poet, born at Cockermouth, of a Yorkshire
stock; educated at Hawkshead Grammar School and at St. John's College,
Cambridge; travelled in France at the Revolution period, and was smitten
with the Republican fever, which however soon spent itself; established
himself in the S. of England, and fell in with Coleridge, and visited
Germany in company with him, and on his return settled in the Lake
Country; married Mary Hutchinson, who had been a school-fellow of his,
and to whom he was attached when a boy, and received a lucrative sinecure
appointment as distributor of stamps in the district, took up his
residence first at Grasmere and finally at Rydal Mount, devoting his life
in best of the Muses, as he deemed, to the composition of poetry, with
all faith in himself, and slowly but surely bringing round his admirers
to the same conclusion; he began his career in literature by publishing
along with Coleridge "Lyrical Ballads"; finished his "Prelude" in 1806,
and produced his "Excursion" in 1814, after which, from his home at Rydal
Mount, there issued a long succession of miscellaneous pieces; he
succeeded Southey as poet-laureate in 1843; he is emphatically the poet
of external nature and of its all-inspiring power, and it is as such his
admirers regard him; Carlyle compares his muse to "an honest rustic
fiddle, good and well handled, but wanting two or more of the strings,
and not capable of much"; to judge of Wordsworth's merits as a poet the
student is referred to Matthew Arnold's "Selections" (1770-1850).
WORLD, THE, the name applied in the New Testament to the collective
body of those who reject and oppose the spirit of Christ, who practically
affirm what He denies, and practically deny what He affirms, or turn His
Yea into Nay, and His Nay into Yea.
WORMS (25), an old German town in Hesse-Darmstadt, in a fertile
plain on the left bank of the Rhine, 40 m. SE. of Mainz, with a massive
Romanesque cathedral having two domes and four towers; it was here the
Diet of the empire was held under Charles V., and before which Martin
Luther appeared on 17th April 1521, standing alone in his defence on the
rock of Scripture, and deferentially declining to recant: "Here stand I;
I can do no other; so help me God."
WORSAAE, JANS JACOB, eminent Danish archaeologist, born in Jutland;
has written on the antiquities of the North, specially in a Scandinavian
WORTHING (16), a fashionable watering-place on the Sussex coast, 101/2
m. SW. of Brighton; has a mild climate, fine sands, and a long wide
WOTTON, SIR HENRY, diplomatist and scholar, born in Kent; was
ambassador of James I. for 20 years, chiefly at Venice; visited Kepler
(q. v.) on one occasion, and found him a very "ingenious person," and
came under temporary eclipse for his definition of an ambassador, "An
honest man sent to lie abroad for the good of his country"; was
ultimately provost of Eton, and was a friend of many good men, among
others Isaac Walton, who wrote his Life; he wished to be remembered as
the author of the saying, "The itch of controversy is the scab
(_scabies_) of the Churches," and caused it to be insculpt in his epitaph
WOUVERMANS, PHILIP, Dutch painter, born at Haarlem, where he lived
and died; painted small landscapes, hunting pieces, and battle pieces,
from which the picture-dealers profited, while he lived and died poor;
had two brothers, whose pictures are, though inferior, often mistaken for
WRANGEL, FREDERICK, Prussian field-marshal, born at Stettin; served
with distinction in various campaigns, and commanded in the Danish War of
1864, and was present in the Austro-Prussian War of 1866, though without
command; was known as Papa Wrangel among the Berliners, who loved him for
his disregard of grammar (1784-1877).
WRANGLER, name given in Cambridge University to those who have
attained the first rank in mathematics, pure and applied, the one who
heads the list being known as the Senior Wrangler.
WREDE, PHILIP, field-marshal and prince, born in Heidelberg; served
as a Bavarian general against Austria as the ally of Napoleon at Wagram,
and also in the expedition against Russia in 1812, on which occasion he
covered the retreat of the French army to the loss of nearly all the
cavalry; fought against the French at Hanau; was defeated, but was
afterwards successful on French soil, and eventually became
commander-in-chief of the Bavarian army (1767-1838).
WREN, SIR CHRISTOPHER, architect, born at East Knoyle, in Wiltshire;
educated at Westminster School and Wadham College, Oxford, and became
Fellow of All Souls; was early distinguished in mathematics and for
mechanical ingenuity, and soon became notable for his skill in
architecture, and received a commission to restore St. Paul's, London,
but on its destruction in 1666 he was appointed to design and erect an
entirely new structure; for this he had prepared himself by study abroad,
and he proceeded to construct a new St. Paul's after the model of St.
Peter's at Rome, a work which, as it occupied him from 1675 to 1710, took
him 35 years to finish; he died at the age of 90, sitting in his chair
after dinner, and was buried in the cathedral which he had erected, with
this inscription, "Si monumentum requiris, circumspice" (If you inquire
after his monument, look around); Wren was a man of science as well as an
artist; he was at one time Savilian professor of Astronomy at Oxford, and
one of the founders of the Royal Society (1631-1723).
WREN, MATTHEW, bishop of Ely; was one of the judges of the Star
Chamber; assisted in preparing the liturgy for Scotland, which, when read
in St. Giles', Edinburgh, roused the ire of JENNY GEDDES (q. v.);
was impeached, and confined in the Tower for 18 years, and released
at the Restoration (1585-1667).
WREXHAM (12), an important town in Denbighshire, North Wales, 12 m.
SW. from Chester, in the centre of a mining district, and famed for its
WRIGHT, JOSEPH, painter, usually called "Wright of Derby," from his
birthplace and place of residence nearly all his life; he excelled in
portraits, and in the representation of the effects especially of
WRIGHT, THOMAS, antiquary, born in Shropshire, but settled in
London; wrote or edited a vast number of works bearing on the
antiquities, literary and other, of England, and was connected with the
founding of sundry antiquarian societies (1810-1877).
WRITERS TO THE SIGNET, a body of solicitors in Scotland who had at
one time the exclusive privilege of practising in and drawing up cases
for the supreme courts of the country, and whose privileges are now
limited to the preparation of crown writs.
WULSTAN, ST., Saxon bishop of Worcester in the days of Edward the
Confessor; being falsely accused by his adversaries, after the king's
death, he was required to resign, but refused, and laying his crozier on
the Confessor's shrine called upon him to decide who should wear it; none
of his accusers could lift it, only himself, to his exculpation from
WUNDT, WILHELM MAX, distinguished German physiologist, born in
Baden, and professor at Leipzig; distinguished for his studies on the
connection of the physical with the psychical in the human organisation,
and has written on psychology as well as physiology; _b_. 1832.
WUPPERTHAL, a densely-peopled valley in Germany traversed by the
river Wupper, which after a course of 40 m. enters the right bank of the
Rhine between Cologne and Duesseldorf, and which embraces the towns of
Barmen and Elberfeld.
WURMSER, COUNT VON, Austrian general, born in Alsace; took an active
part in the war with France; commanded the respect of Napoleon from his
defence of Mantua, on the capitulation of which he refused to take him
WUeRTEMBERG (2,035), a kingdom of South Germany, about one-fourth the
size of Scotland, between Baden on the W. and Bavaria on the E.; the
Black Forest extends along the W. of it, and it is traversed nearly E.
and W. by the Swabian Alp, which slopes down on the N. side into the
valley of the Neckar, and on the S. into that of the Danube; the soil is