DAVID CAREY, a writer of some versatility, a poet and a novelist, was the son of a manufacturer in Arbroath, where he was born in the year 1782. Having completed his school education, he was placed in his father's counting-house, but cherishing an inclination for literary pursuits, he soon removed to Edinburgh, and was by Mr. Constable the publisher appointed to the temporary charge of a department of his business allied in some degree to the profession of literature. As a better field for the exercise of his talents, he repaired soon after to London, where he obtained, through several gradations, the direction of various departments of the periodical press. He began to publish in 1802. The order and titles of his works will be found annexed. The ability he displayed in advocating the measures of the Whig party, whose side he had espoused, gained for him the notice of Mr. Wyndham, who offered him a situation at the Cape of Good Hope, which he declined. On the change of ministry he wrote a satire on their successors, entitled Ins and Outs, or the state of parties, by Chrononhotonthologos, of which two large editions were sold in a few weeks. On the establishment of The Inverness Journal newspaper, in 1807, he was invited, on the recommendation of Mr. Constable, to undertake the office of editor, which, under many disadvantages, he discharged during nearly five years with general satisfaction, continuing his literary publications at the same time. During a considerable part of the year 1812, he conducted The Boston Gazette. He next repaired again to London, and renewed his connexion with the public journals there. With the exception of a short visit to Paris, on some literary speculation, at a subsequent period, his labours from this time were devoted to the press. At length, weary of perpetual struggles and disappointments, feeling his health much impaired, he returned to his native place, to receive the attentions of parental affection. He died at his father's house at Arbroath, of consumption, after eighteen months' illness, on 4th October 1824, in the 42d year of his age. Besides the works enumerated below, he contributed largely to The Poetical Magazine, or the Temple of the Muses, consisting chiefly of original poems, published in 1804, in two volumes 8vo, of which he was the editor. His poems are distinguished generally by elegance and harmony, and, with a good deal of purity and feeling, are not deficient in sentiment and imagery.
His works are
Pleasures of Nature; or the Charms of Rural Life, and other Poems, 1802, 8vo.
The Reign of Fancy, a Poem, with Notes, 1803, 12mo.
Lyric Tales, &c. 1804.
Secrets of the Castle; a Novel. 1806, 2 vols. 12mo.
Ins and Outs, or the state of Parties, by Chrononhotonthologos. 1807, 8vo.
Poems, chiefly Amatory. 1807, 12mo.
Craig Phadrig; Visions of Sensibility, with Legendary Tales, and occasional Pieces, and Historical Notes; dedicated to Lord Seafield, a tribute chiefly of gratitude for the kindness and hospitality of his Highland friends and neighbours. 1810, 8vo.
Picturesque Scenes; or a Guide to the Highlands. 1811, 8vo
The Lord of the Desert; Sketches of Scenery; Foreign and Domestic Odes, and other poems, 1812.
Lochiel, or the Field of Culloden, 1812. A novel founded on the rebellion of 1745, and exhibiting a vivid picture of local scenery, and a faithful representation of Highland manners.