James Watt (1736-1819)

Eulogium of James Watt




               BY LORD JEFFREY.


Mr. JAMES WATT, the great improver of the steam-en-
gine, died on the 25th of August 1819, at his seat of
Heathfield, near Birmingham, in the 84th year of his age.

This name fortunately needs no commemoration of
ours; for he that bore it survived to see it crowned with
undisputed and unenvied honours; and many genera-
tions will probably pass away before it shall have “ga-
thered all its fame.” We have said that Mr Watt was
the great improver of the steam-engine; but, in truth,
as to all that is admirable in its structure, or vast in its
utility, he should rather be described as its inventor.
It was by his inventions that its action was so regulated
as to make it capable of being applied to the finest and
most delicate manufactures, and its power so increased
as to set weight and solidity at defiance. By his admi-
rable contrivances, it has become a thing stupendous