Latest Of Dr Johnson's Contemporaries
In the autumn of 1831, died the Rev. Dr. Shaw, at Chesley,
Somersetshire, at the age of eighty-three: he is said to have been the
last surviving friend of Dr. Johnson.
On the 16th of January, in the above year, died Mr. Richard Clark,
chamberlain of the City of London, in the ninety-second year of his age.
At the age of fifteen, he was introduced by Sir John Hawkins to Johnson,
whose friendship he enjoyed
to the last year of the Doctor's life. He
attended Johnson's evening parties at the Mitre Tavern, in Fleet-street;
where, among other literary characters he met Dr. Percy, Dr. Goldsmith,
and Dr. Hawksworth. A substantial supper was served at eight o'clock;
the party seldom separated till a late hour; and Mr. Clark recollected
that early one morning he, with another of the party, accompanied the
Doctor to his house, where Mrs. Williams, then blind, made tea for them.
When Mr. Clark was sheriff, he took Johnson to a "Judges' Dinner," at
the Old Bailey; the judges being Blackstone and Eyre. Mr. Clark often
visited the Doctor, and met him at dinner-parties; and the last time he
enjoyed his company was at the Essex Head Club, of which, by the
Doctor's invitation, Clark became a member.
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