His descriptions, which were somewhat exaggerated, were largely used by Macaulay in his History of England.
C. Macaulay (2 vols., 1890); in German by Bahr (Stuttgart, 1867) and Stein (Oldenburg, 1875); in French by Giguet (1857) and Talbot (1864);(1864); in Italian by Ricci (Turin, 1871-1876), Grandi (Asti, 1872) and Bertini (Naples, 1871-1872).
He was often inconsistent, he was generally intractable and overbearing, and he was always pompous and affected to a degree which, Macaulay has remarked, seems scarcely compatible with true greatness.
In 1690 he moved a famous amendment to the Corporation Bill, proposing the addition of a clause - the purport of which was misrepresented by Macaulay - for disqualifying for office for seven years municipal functionaries who in defiance of the majority of their colleagues had surrendered their charters to the Crown.
This Berlin visit is more or less familiar to English readers from the two great essays of Macaulay and Carlyle as well as from the Frederick 'of the ' latter.
If the Puritans regarded bowls with no friendly eye, as Lord Macaulay asserts, one can hardly wonder at it.
Yet in his anxiety to do justice to his subject he steeped himself in Macaulay till his style often recalls that which he is censuring.
As a matter of fact, the book which Macaulay was professing to review describes at length the honourable part consistently taken by Hastings in opposition to the great majority of the council.
He belonged to the school of Thucydides and Gibbon, not to that of Macaulay and Taine; he deals by preference with the rulers and leaders of the world, and he strictly limits his field to the history of the state, or, as we should say, political history; and in this he is followed by Seeley, one of the greatest of his adherents.
Both were unjust to Voltaire, and Macaulay was unjust to Frederick as well.