SIR JOHN BLAND, OF KIPPAX PARK.
Sir John Bland, of Kippax Park, flirted away his whole fortune at
Hazard. 'He, t'other night,' says Walpole, 'exceeded what was
lost by the late Duke of Bedford, having at one period of the
night (though he recovered the greater part of it) lost two and
thirty thousand pounds.' Sir John Kippax shot himself in 1705.
Lord Mountford came to a tragic end through his gambling. He had
lost money; feared to be reduced to distress; asked for a
government appointment, and determined to throw the die of life
or death on the answer received from court. The answer was
unfavourable. He consulted several persons, indirectly at first,
afterwards pretty directly, on the easiest mode of finishing
life; invited a dinner-party for the day after; supped at
White's, and played at Whist till one o'clock of the New Year's
morning. Lord Robert Bertie drank to him 'a happy new year;' he
clapped his hand strangely to his eyes. In the morning, he sent
for a lawyer and three witnesses, executed his will, made them
read it over twice, paragraph by paragraph, asked the lawyer if
that will would stand good though a man were to shoot himself.
Being assured it would, he said--'Pray stay, while I step into
the next room;' went into the next room and shot himself, placing
the muzzle of the pistol so close to his head that the report was