The Letters of Horace Walpole Volume 3
by Horace Walpole
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Before I have done with Charles Townshend, I must tell you one of his admirable bon-mots. Miss Draycote,(468) the great fortune, is grown very fat: he says her tonnage is become equal to her poundage.

There is the devil to pay in Nabob-land, but I understand Indian histories no better than stocks. The council rebelled against the governors and sent a deputation, the Lord knows why, to the Nabob, who cut off the said deputies' heads, and then, I think, was disnabob'd himself, and Clive's old friend reinstated. There is another rebellion in Minorca, where Johnson [has renounced his allegiance to viceroy Dick Lyttelton, and set up for himself. Sir Richard has laid the affair before the King and council; Charles Townshend first, and then your brother, (you know why I am sorry they should appear together in that cause,) have tried to deprecate Sir Richard's wrath: but it was then too late. The silly fellow has brought himself' to a precipice.

I forgot to tell you that Lord George Sackville carried into the minority with him his own brother(469) Lord Middlesex; Lord Milton's brother;(470) young Beauclerc; Sir Thomas Hales; and Colonel Irwine.

We have not heard a word of the Hereditary Prince and Princess. They were sent away in a tempest, and I believe the best one can hope is, that they are driven to Norway.(471)

Good night, my dear lord; it is time to finish, for it is half an hour after one in the morning - I am forced to purloin such hours to Write to you, for I get up so late, and then have such a perpetual succession Of nothings to do, such auctions, politics, visits, dinners, suppers, books to publish or revise, etc. that I have not a quarter of an hour without a call upon it: but I need not tell you, who know my life, that I am forced to create new time, if I will keep up my correspondence with you. You seem to like I should, and I wish to give you every satisfaction in my power.

Tuesday, February 7, four o'clock.

I tremble whilst I continue my letter, having just heard such a dreadful story! A captain of a vessel has made oath before the Lord Mayor, this morning, that he saw one of the yachts sunk on the coast of Holland; and it is believed to be the one in which the Prince was. The city is in an uproar; nor need one point out all such an accident may produce, if true; which I most fervently hope it is not. My long letter will help you to comments enough, which will be made on this occasion. I wish you may know, at this moment, that our fears are ill placed. The Princess was not in the same yacht with her husband. Poor Fanshawe,(472) as clerk of the green cloth, with his wife and sister, was in one of them.

Here is more of the Duc de Pecquigny's episode. An officer was sent yesterday to put Virette under arrest. His servant disputed with the officer on his orders, till his master made his escape. Virette sent a friend, whom he ordered to deliver his letter in person, and see it read, with a challenge, appointing the Duc to meet him at an hour after seven this morning, at Buckingham-gate, where he waited till ten to no purpose, though the Duc had not been put under arrest. Virette absconds, and has sent M. de Pecquigny word, that he shall abscond till he can find a proper opportunity of fighting him. Your discretion will naturally prevent your talking of this; but I thought you would like to be prepared, if this affair should any how happen to become your business, though your late discussion With the Duc de Chaulnes will add to your disinclination from meddling with it.

I must send this to the post before I go to the Opera, and therefore shall not be able to tell you more of the Prince of Brunswick by this post.

(461) The "Maccaroni" of 1764 was nearly synonymous with the term "dandy" at present in vogue, and even become classical by the use of it by Lord Byron; who, in his story of Beppo, written in 1817, speaks of

——"the dynasty of Dandies, now Perchance succeeded by some other class Of imitated imitators:—how Irreparably soon decline, alas! The demagogues of fashion: all below Is frail; how easily the world is lost By love, or war, and now and then by frost!"-E.

(462) A bill, passed in the last session, for an additional duty on cider and perry, which was violently opposed by the cider counties, and taken up as a general opposition question. This measure was considered as a great error on the part of Lord Bute, and the unpopularity consequent upon it is said to have contributed to his resignation.

(463) On a motion for a committee on the Cider-bill on the 24th of January. Mr. James Grenville, in a letter to his sister, Lady Chatham, speaking of this debate says, "I should make you as old a woman as either Sandys or Rushout, if I were to state all the jargon that arose in this debate. It was plain the Court meant to preclude any repeal of the bill; the cider people coldly wished to obtain it. Sir Richard Bamfylde, at the head of them, spoke, not his own sentiments, as he declared, but those which the instructions and petitions of his constituents forced him to maintain. We divided 127 with us: against us, 167." Chatham Correspondence, vol. ii. p. 282.-E.

(464) It was a proposal for converting certain outstanding navy-bills into annuities at four per cent.-C.

(465) Sir William Baker, member for Plympton; an alderman of London. He married the eldest daughter of the second Jacob Tonson, the bookseller.-E.

(466) There is no other account of this remarkable speech to be found; and indeed we have little notice of General Conway's parliamentary efforts, except Mr. Burke's general and brilliant description of his conduct as leader of the House of Commons in the Rockingham administration. As General Conway's reputation in the House of Commons has been in some degree forgotten, it may be as well to cite the passage from Mr. Burke's speech, in 1774, on American taxation, in support of what Mr. Walpole says of the General's powers in debate:—"I will likewise do justice, I ought to do it, to the honourable gentleman who led us in this House. Far from the duplicity wickedly charged on him, he acted his part with alacrity and resolution. We all felt inspired by the example he gave us, down even to myself, the weakest in that phalanx. I declare for one, I knew well enough (it could not be concealed from any body) the true state of things; but, in my life I never came with so much spirits into this House. It was a time for a man to act in. We had powerful enemies; but we had faithful and determined friends and a glorious cause. We had a great battle to fight, but we had the means of fighting; not as now, when our arms are tied behind us. We did fight that day, and conquer. I remember, Sir, with a melancholy pleasure, the situation of the Honourable gentleman (General Conway) who made the motion for the repeal; in that crisis, when the whole trading interest of this empire, crammed into your lobbies with a trembling, and anxious expectation, waited, ,almost to a winter's return of light, their fate from your resolution. When, at length, you had determined in their favour, and your doors thrown open, showed them the figure of their deliverer in the well-earned triumph of his important victory, from the whole of that grave multitude there arose an involuntary burst of gratitude and transport, They jumped upon him like children on a long absent father. They clung about him like captives about the redeemer. All England, all America, joined in his applause. Nor did he seem insensible to the best of all earthly regards—the love and admiration of his fellow-citizens. Hope elevated, and joy brightened his crest. I stood near him; and his face, to use the expression of the Scripture of the first martyr, 'his face was as if it had been the face of an angel.' I do not know how others feel; but if I had Stood in that situation, I never would have exchanged it for all that kings, in their profusion, could bestow. I did hope, that that day's danger and honour would have been a bond to hold us all together for ever. But alas! that, with other pleasing visions, is long since vanished."-C.

(467) Mr. Walpole tinges his approbation of Lord George's politics by this allusion to Minden, where his lordship had not "led up the Blues."-C.

(468) Miss Anna Maria Draycote, married in April, 17()3, to Earl Pomfret. To taste Mr. Townshend's jest, one must recollect, that in the finance of that day the duties of tonnage and poundage held a principal place.-C.

(469) Governor Vansittart, contrary to the advice of his council, had deposed the Nabob Meer Jaffier, and transferred the sovereignty to his son-in-law, Cossim Ali Cawn. The latter, however, soon forgot his obligations to the English; and in consequence of some aggressions on his part, a deputation, consisting of Mesrs Amyatt and Hay, members of council, attended by half a dozen other gentlemen, was sent to the new Nabob. While this deputation was on its return, hostilities broke out, and these gentlemen were put to death as they were passing the city of Mor", Moreshedabad. About the same here the English council at Patna and their attendants were made prisoners, and afterwards cruelly massacred. These events necessitated the deposition of Cossim, and Jaffier was accordingly, after a short campaign, restored.-C. (468) Charles, afterwards second Duke of Dorset.-E.

(470) John Damer, member for Dorchester. Lord Milton had married Lord George's youngest sister, Lady Caroline.-E.

(471) The Prince and Princess landed safely at Helvoet on the 2d of February.-E.

(472) Simon Fanshawe, Esq. member for Grampound. He had married a lady of his own name.

Letter 192 To The Earl Of Hertford. Arlington Street, Wednesday, Feb. 15, 1764. (page 283)

My dear lord, You ought to be Witness to the fatigue I am suffering, before you can estimate the merit I have in being writing to you at this moment. Cast up eleven hours in the House of Commons on Monday, and above seventeen hours yesterday—ay, seventeen at length,- -and then you may guess if I am tired! nay, you must add seventeen hours that I may possibly be there on Friday, and then calculate if I am weary.(473) In short, yesterday was the longest day ever known in the House of Commons—why, on the Westminster election at the end of my father's reign,(474) I was at home by six. On Alexander Murray's(475) affair, I believe, by five—on the militia, twenty people, I think, sat till six, but then they were only among themselves, no heat, no noise, no roaring. It was half an hour after seven this morning before I was at home. Think of that, and then brag of your French parliaments!(476)

What is ten times greater, Leonidas and the Spartan minority did not make such a stand at Thermopylae, as we did. Do you know, we had like to have been the majority? Xerxes(477) is frightened out of his senses; Sysigambis(478) has sent an express to Luton to forbid Phrates(479) coming to town to-morrow: Norton's(480) impudence has forsaken him; Bishop Warburton is at this moment reinstating Mr. Pitt's name in the dedication to his sermons, which he had expunged for Sandwich's;(481) and Sandwich himself is—at Paris, perhaps, by this time, for the first thing I expect to hear to-morrow is, that he is gone off.

Now are you mortally angry with me for trifling with you, and not telling you at once the particulars of this almost-revolution. You may be angry, but I shall take my own time, and shall give myself what airs I please both to you, my Lord Ambassador, and to you, my Lord Secretary of State, who will, I suppose, open this letter—if you have courage enough left. In the first place, I assume all the impertinence of a prophet, aye, of that great curiosity, a prophet, who really prophesied before the event, and whose predictions have been accomplished. Have I, or have I not, announced to you the unexpected blows that would be given to the administration?—come, I will lay aside my dignity, and satisfy your impatience. There's moderation.

We sat all Monday hearing evidence against Mr. Wood,(482) that dirty wretch Webb,(483) and the messengers, for their illegal proceedings against Mr. Wilkes. At midnight, Mr. Grenville offered us to adjourn or proceed. Mr. Pitt humbly begged not to eat or sleep till so great a point should be decided. On a division, in which though many said aye to adjourning, nobody would go out for fear of losing their seats, it was carried by 379 to 31, for proceeding—and then—half the House went away. The ministers representing the indecency of this, and Fitzherbert saying that many were within call, Stanley observed, that after voting against adjournment, a third part had adjourned themselves, when, instead of being within call, they ought to have been within hearing: this was unanswerable, and we adjourned.

Yesterday we fell to again. It was one in the morning before the evidence was closed. CarringTon, the messenger, was alone examined for seven hours. This old man, the cleverest of all ministerial terriers, was pleased with recounting his achievements, yet guarded and betraying nothing. However, the arcana imperia have been wofully laid open.

I have heard Garrick, and other players, give themselves airs of fatigue after a long part—think of the Speaker, nay, think of the clerks taking most correct minutes for sixteen hours, and reading them over to every witness; and then let me hear of fatigue! Do you know, not only my Lord Temple,(484)—who you may swear never budged as spectator, but old Will Chetwynd,(485) now past eighty, and who had walked to the House, did not stir a single moment out of his place, from three in the afternoon till the division at seven in the morning. Nay, we had patriotesses, too, who stayed out the whole: Lady Rockingham and Lady Sondes the first day; both again the second day, with Miss Mary Pelham, Mrs. Fitzroy,(486) and the Duchess of Richmond, as patriot as any of us. Lady Mary Coke, Mrs. George Pitt,(487) and Lady Pembroke(488) came after the Opera, but I think did not stay above seven or eight hours at most.

At one, Sir W. Meredith(489) moved a resolution of the illegality of the warrant, and opened it well. He was seconded by old Darlington's brother,(490) a convert to us. Mr. Wood, who had shone the preceding day by great modesty, decency, and ingenuity, forfeited these merits a good deal by starting up (according to a ministerial plan,) and very arrogantly, and repeatedly in the night, demanding justice and a previous acquittal, and telling the House he scorned to accept being merely excused; to which Mr. Pitt replied, that if he disdained to be excused, he would deserve to be censured. Mr. Charles Yorke (who, with his family, have come roundly to us for support against the Duke of Bedford on the Marriage-bill(491)) proposed to adjourn. Grenville and the Ministry would have agreed to adjourn the debate on the great question itself, but declared they would push this acquittal. This they announced haughtily enough—for as yet, they did not doubt of their strength. Lord Frederick Campbell(492) was the most impetuous of all, so little he foresaw how much wiser it would be to follow your brother. Pitt made a short speech, excellently argumentative, and not bombast, nor tedious. nor deviating from the question. He was supported by your brother, and Charles Townshend, and Lord George;(493) the two last of whom are strangely firm, now they are got under the cannon of your brother Charles, who, as he must be extraordinary, is now so in romantic nicety of honour. His father,(494) who is dying, or dead, at Bath, and from whom he hopes two thousand a year, has sent for him. He has refused to go—lest his steadiness should be questioned. At a quarter after four we divided. Our cry was so loud, that both we and the ministers thought we had carried it. It is not to be painted, the dismay of the latter—in good truth not without reason, for we were 197, they but 207. Your experience can tell you, that a majority of but ten is a defeat. Amidst a great defection from them, was even a white staff, Lord Charles Spencer(495)—now you know still more of what I told you was preparing for them!

Crestfallen, the ministers then proposed simply to discharge the complaint; but the plumes which they had dropped, Pitt soon placed in his own beaver. He broke out on liberty, and, indeed, on whatever he pleased, uninterrupted. Rigby sat feeling the vice-treasurership slipping from under him. Nugent was now less pensive—Lord Strange,(496) though not interested, did not like it. Every body was too much taken up with his own concerns or too much daunted, to give the least disturbance to the Pindaric. Grenville, however, dropped a few words, which did but heighten the flame. Pitt, with less modesty than ever he showed, pronounced a panegyric, on his own administration, and from thence broke out on the dismission of officers. This increased the roar from us. Grenville replied, and very finely, very pathetically, very animated. he painted Wilkes and faction, and, with very little truth, denied the charge of menaces to officers. At that moment, General A'Court(497) walked up the House —think what an impression such an incident must make, when passions, hopes, and fears, were all afloat—think, too, how your brother and I, had we been ungenerous, could have added to these sensations! There was a man not so delicate. Colonel Barr'e rose—and this attended with a striking circumstance; Sir Edward Deering, one of our noisy fools, called out, "Mr. Barr'e,"(498) The latter seized the thought with admirable quickness, and said to the Speaker, who, in pointing to him, had called him Colonel, "I beg your pardon, Sir, you have pointed to me by a title I have no right to," and then made a very artful and pathetic speech on his own services and dismission; with nothing bad but an awkward attempt towards an excuse to Mr. Pitt for his former behaviour. Lord North, who will not lose his bellow, though he may lose his place, endeavoured to roar up the courage of his comrades, but it would not do—the House grew tired, and we again divided at seven for adjournment; some of our people were gone, and we remained but 184, they 208; however, you will allow our affairs are mended, when we say, but 184. We then came away, and left the ministers to satisfy Wood, Webb, and themselves, as well as they could. It was eight in the morning before I was in bed; and considering that this is no very short letter, Mr. Pitt bore the fatigue with his usual spirit(499)—and even old Onslow, the late Speaker, was sitting up, anxious for the event.

On Friday we are to have the great question, which would prevent my writing; and to-morrow I dine with Guerchy, at the Duke of Grafton's, besides twenty other engagements. To-day I have shut myself up; for with writing this, and taking notes yesterday all day, and all night, I have not an eye left to see out of—nay, for once in my life, I shall go to bed at ten o'clock.

I am glad to be able to contradict two or three passages in my last letter. The Prince and Princess of Brunswick are safely landed, though they were in extreme danger. The Duc de Pecquigny had not only been put in arrest late on the Sunday night, which I did not know, but has retrieved his honour. Monsieur de Guerchy sent him away, and at Dover Virette found him, and whispered him to steal from D'Allonville(500) and fight. The Duc first begged his pardon, owned himself in the wrong, and then fought him, and was wounded, though slightly, in four places in the arm; and both are returned to London with their honours as white as snow.

Sir Jacob Downing(501) is dead, and has left every shilling to his wife; id est, not sixpence to my Lord Holland;(502) a mishap which, being followed by a minority of 197, will not make a pleasant week to him.

now would you believe how I feel and how I wish? I wish we may continue the minority. The desires of some of my associates, perhaps, may not be satisfied, but mine are. Here is an opposition formidable enough to keep abler ministers than Messieurs the present gentlemen in awe. They may pick pockets, but they will pick no more locks. While we continue a minority, we preserve our characters, and we have some too good to part with. I hate to have a camp to plunder; at least, I am so Which I am so whig, I hate spoils but the opima spolia. I think it, too, much more creditable to control ministers, than to be ministers—and much more creditable than to become mere ministers ourselves. I have several other excellent reasons against our success, though I could combat them with as many drawn from the insufficience of the present folk, and the propriety of Mr. Pitt being minister; but I am too tired, and very likely so are you, my dear lord, by this time, and therefore good night!

Friday noon.

I had sealed my letter, and break it open again on receiving yours of the 13th, by the messenger. Though I am very sorry you had not then got mine from Monin, which would have prepared you for much of what has happened, I do not fear its miscarriage, as I think I can account for the delay. I had, for more security, put it into the parcel with two more volumes of my Anecdotes of Painting; which, I suppose, remained in M. Monin's baggage; and he might not have taken it when he delivered the single letters. If he has not yet sent you the parcel, you may ask for it, as the same delicacy is not necessary as for a letter.

I thank Lord Beauchamp much for the paper, but should thank him much more for a letter from himself. I am going this minute to the House, where I have already been to prayers,(503) to take a place. It was very near full then, so critical a day it is! I expect we shall be beaten-but we shall not be so many times more. Lord Granby(504) I hear, is to move the previous question—they are reduced to their heavy cannon.

Sunday evening, 19th.

Happening to hear of a gentleman who sets out for Paris in two or three days, I stopped my letter, both out of prudence (pray admire me!) and from thinking that it was as well to send you at once the complete history of our Great Week. By the time you have read the preceding pages, you may, perhaps, expect to find a change in the ministry in what I am going to say. You must have a little patience; our parliamentary war, like the last war in Germany, produces very considerable battles, that are not decisive. Marshal Pitt has given another great blow to the subsidiary army, but they remained masters of the field, and both sides sing te Deum. I am not talking figuratively, when I assure you that bells, bonfires, and an illumination from the Monument, were prepared in the city, in case we had the majority. Lord Temple was so indiscreet and indecent as to have fagots ready for two bonfires, but was persuaded to lay aside the design, even before it was abortive.

It is impossible to give you the detail of so long a debate as Friday's. You will regret it the less when I tell you it was a very dull one. I never knew a day of expectation answer. The impromptus and the unexpected are ever the most shining. We love to hear ourselves talk, and yet we must be formed of adamant to be able to talk day and night on the same question for a week together. If you had seen how ill we looked, you would not have wondered we did not speak well. A company of colliers emerging from damps and darkness could not have appeared more ghastly and dirty than we did on Wednesday morning; and we had not recovered much bloom on Friday. We spent two or three hours on corrections of, and additions to, the question of pronouncing the warrant illegal, till the ministry had contracted it to fit scarce any thing but the individual case of Wilkes, Pitt not opposing the amendments because Charles Yorke gave into them; for it is wonderful(505) what deference is paid by both sides to that house. The debate then began by Norton's moving to adjourn the consideration of the question for four months, and holding out a promise of a bill, which neither they mean nor, for my part, should I like: I would not give prerogative so much as a definition. You are a peer, and, therefore, perhaps, will hear it with patience—but think how our ears must have tingled, when he told us, that should we pass the resolution, and he were a judge, he would mind it no more than the resolution of a drunken porter! Had old Onslow been in the chair, I believe he would have knocked him down with the mace. He did hear of it during the debate, though not severely enough; but the town rings with it. Charles Yorke replied, and was much admired. Me he did not please; I require a little more than palliatives and sophistries. He excused the part he has taken by pleading that he had never seen the warrant, till after Wilkes was taken up—yet he then pronounced the No. 45 a libel, and advised the commitment of Wilkes to the Tower. If you advised me to knock a man down, would you excuse yourself by saying you had never seen the stick with which I gave the blow Other speeches we had without end, but none good, except from Lord George Sackville, a short one from Elliot, and one from Charles Townshend, so fine that it amazed, even from him. Your brother had spoken with excellent sense against the corrections, and began well again in the debate, but with so much rapidity that he confounded himself first, and then was seized with such a hoarseness that he could not proceed. Pitt and George Grenville ran a match of silence, striving which should reply to the other. At last, Pitt, who had three times in the debate retired with pain,(506) rose about three in the morning, but so languid, so exhausted, that, in his life, he never made less figure. Grenville answered him; and at five in the morning we divided. The Noes were so loud, as it admits a deeper sound than Aye, that the Speaker, who has got a bit of nose(507) since the opposition got numbers, gave it for us. They went forth; and when I heard our side counted to the amount of 218, I did conclude we were victorious; but they returned 232. It is true we were beaten by fourteen, but we were increased by twenty-one; and no ministry could stand on so slight an advantage, if we could continue above two hundred.(508)

We may, and probably shall, fall off: this was our strongest question—but our troops will stand fast: their hopes and views depend upon it, and their spirits are raised. But for the other side it will not be the same. The lookers-on will be stayers away, and their very subsidies will undo them. They bought two single votes that day with two peerages;(509) Sir R. Bampfylde(510) and Sir Charles Tynte(511)—and so are going to light up the flame of two more county elections—and that in the west, where surely nothing was wanting but a tinder-box!

You would have almost laughed to see the spectres produced by both sides; one would have thought that they had sent a search-warrant for members of parliament into every hospital. Votes were brought down in flannels and blankets, till the floor of the House looked like the pool of Bethesda. 'Tis wonderful that half of us are not dead—I should not say us; Herculean I have not suffered the least, except that from being a Hercules of ten grains, I don't believe I now weigh above eight. I felt from nothing so much as the noise, which made me as drunk as an owl- -you may imagine the clamours of two parties so nearly matched, and so impatient to come to a decision.

The Duchess of Richmond has got a fever with the attendance of Tuesday—but on Friday we were forced to be unpolite. The Amazons came down in such squadrons, that we were forced to be denied. However, eight or nine of the patriotesses dined in one of the Speaker's rooms, and stayed there till twelve—nay, worse, while their dear country was at stake, I am afraid they were playing at loo!

The Townshends, you perceive by this account, are returned; their father not dead.(512) Lord Howe(513) and the Colonel voted with us; so did Lord Newnham,(514) and is likely to be turned out of doors for it. A warrant to take up Lord Charles Spenser was sent to Blenheim from Bedford-house,(515) and signed by his brother, and returned for him; so he went thither—not a very kind office in the Duke of Marlborough to Lord Charles's character. Lord Granby refused to make the motion, but spoke for it. Lord Hardwicke is relapsed; but we do not now fear any consequences from his death. The Yorkes, who abandoned a triumphant administration, are not so tender as to return and comfort them in their depression.

The chief business now, I suppose, will lie in souterreins and intrigues. Lord Bute's panic will, probably, direct him to make application to us. Sandwich will be manufacturing lies, and Rigby, negotiations. Some change or other, whether partial or extensive, must arrive. The best that can happen for the ministers, is to be able to ward off the blow till the recess, and they have time to treat at leisure; but in just the present state it is impossible things should remain. The opposition is too strong, and their leaders too able to make no impression.

Adieu! pray tell Mr. Hume that I am ashamed to be thus writing the history of England, when he is with you!

P. S. The new baronies are contradicted, but may recover truth at the end of the session.(516)

(473) the important debate on the question of General Warrants, which is the subject of the following able and interesting letter, has never been reported. There are, indeed, in the parliamentary history, a letter from Sir George Yonge, and two statements by Sir William Meredith and Charles Townshend, on the subject, but they relate chiefly to their own motives and reasonings, and give neither the names nor the arguments of the debater,-, and fall very short indeed of the vigour and vivacity of Mr. Walpole's animated sketch.-C.

(474) On the 22d December, 1741. This was one of the debates that terminated Sir Robert Walpole's administration: the numbers on the division were 220 against 216.-C.

(475) The proceedings of the 6th of February, 1751, against the Honourable A. Murray, for impeding the Westminster election; but Walpole, in his Memoires, states that the House adjourned at two in the morning.-C.

(476) The disputes between Louis XV. and his parliaments, which prepared the revolution, were at this period assuming a serious appearance.-C.

(477) The King.

(478) The Princess Dowager.

(479) Lord Bute. Luton was his seat in Bedfordshire.

(480) Mr. Walpole was too sanguine: Sir Fletcher had not even lost his boldness; for in the further progress of the adjourned debate, we shall find that he told the House that he would regard their resolution of no more value (in point of law, must be understood) than the vociferations of so many drunken porters.-C.

(481) Lord Sandwich was an agreeable companion and an able minister; but One whose moral character did not point him out as exactly the fittest patron for a volume of sermons; and he was at this moment so unpopular, that Mr. Walpole affects to think he may have been intimidated to fly.-C.

(482) Robert Wood, Esq. under-secretary of state; against whom, for his official share in the affair of the general warrants, Mr. Wilkes's complaint was made.-C.

(483) Philip Carteret Webb, Esq. solicitor to the treasury, complained on the same ground. Mr. Walpole probably applies these injurious terms to Mr. Webb, on account of a supposed error in his evidence on the trial in the Common Pleas, for which he was afterwards indicted for perjury, but he was fully acquitted. The point was of little importance —whether he had or had not a key in his hand.-C.

(484) Lord Temple was, as every one knows, a very keen politician, and took in all this matter a most prominent part; indeed, he was the prime mover of the whole affair, and bore the expense of all Wilkes's law proceedings out of his own pocket.-C.

(485) William Chetwynd, brother of Lord Chetwynd: at this time master of the mint. He was in early life a friend of Lord Bolingbroke, and called, from the darkness of his complexion, Oroonoko Chetwynd: he sat out these debates with impunity, for he survived to succeed his brother as Lord Chetwynd, in 1767, and did not die for some years after.-C.

(486) Probably Anne, daughter of Admiral Sir Peter Warren; married, in 1758, to Colonel Charles Fitzroy, afterwards first Lord Southampton.-C.

(487) Penelope, daughter of Sir H. Atkins, married, in 1746, to George Pitt, first Lord Rivers.-C.

(488) Elizabeth. daughter of Charles Spenser, first Duke of Marlborough of the Spenser branch, married, in 1756, to Henry, tenth Earl of Pembroke; she was celebrated for her beauty, which had even, it was said, captivated George III. When General Conway was dismissed for the vote of this very night, Lord Pembroke succeeded to his regiment.-C.

(489) Sir William Meredith's motion was, "That a general warrant for apprehending and securing the authors, printers, and publishers of a seditious libel, together with their papers, is not warranted by law." This proposition the administration did not venture to deny, but they attached to it an exculpatory amendment to the Following effect:—"although such warrant has been issued according to the usage of office, and has been frequently produced to, and never condemned by, courts of justice."-C.

(490) Gilbert, youngest brother of henry, first Earl of Darlington, who was so well known in Sir Robert Walpole's and Mr. Pelham's time as " Harry Vane." Mr. Gilbert Vane was deputy treasurer of Chelsea Hospital, but on this occasion abandoned the ministerial side of the House, with which he had hitherto voted: he died in 1772.-C.

(491) The Marriage act was not an original measure of Lord Hardwicke; but as he, on the failure of one or two previous attempts at a bill on that subject, was requested by the House of Lords to prepare one, he, and of course his sons, must have continued interested in its maintenance; but Mr. Walpole's suspicion of a bargain and sale of sentiments between there and the opposition is quite absurd. Even from Mr. Walpole's own statement, it would seem, that, on the subject of general warrants, mr. Charles Yorke acted with sincerity and moderation,-anxious to have a great legal question properly decided, and unwilling to prostitute its success to the purposes of party.-C.

(492) Fourth son of John, third Duke of Argyle; afterwards keeper of the privy seal in Scotland, secretary to the Lord Lieutenant of Ireland, and finally, lord register of Scotland. As He was the brother-in-law of General Conway, Mr. Walpole seems to have expected him to have followed Conway's politics.-C.

(493) Lord George Sackville.

(494) Charles, third Lord Townshend, a peer, whose reputation is lost between that of his father and his sons.-C.

(495) Second son of the Duke of Marlborough; his white staff was that of comptroller of the household. He was, it seems, in Mr. Walpole's sense of the word, wiser than Lord Frederick Campbell; but we shall see presently, that this wisdom grew ashamed of itself in a day or two, and in 1765, when the party which he had this night assisted came into power, he was turned out.-C.

(496) James, eldest son of the Earl of Derby, born in 1717; he died in 1771, before his father. I know not why Walpole says he was not interested; he was a very respectable man, but he was also chancellor of the duchy, and might naturally have felt as much interested as the other placemen-C.

(497) Lately dismissed. See ant'e, p. 276, letter 188.-E.

(498) Colonel Barr'e had been dismissed from the office of adjutant-general. See ant'e, p. 258, letter 184.-E.

(499) The Duke of Newcastle in a letter to Mr. Pitt of the 15th, says, "Mr. West and honest George Onslow came to my bedside this morning, to give me an account of the glorious day we had yesterday, and of the great obligations which every true lover of the liberties of his country and our present constitution owe to you, for the superior ability, firmness, and resolution which you showed during the longest attention that ever was known. God forbid that your health should suffer by your zeal for your country." Chatham Correspondence, vol. ii. p. 287.-E.

(500) Probably the gentleman in whose charge M. de Guerchy had sent away the giddy Duke.-C.

(501) Sir Jacob Gerrard Downing, Bart., member for Dunwich: he died the 6th of February, and left his estate, as Mr. Walpole says, to his wife; but only for her life, and afterwards to build and endow Downing College at Cambridge.(502) The grounds of any expectation which Lord Holland may have entertained from Sir Jacob Downing have not reached us; but it is right to say, that Mr. Walpole had quarrelled with Lord Holland, and was glad on any occasion, just or otherwise, to sneer at him.-C.

(503) It may be necessary to remark, that any member who attends at the daily prayers of the House has a right, for that evening, to the place he occupies at prayers. On nights of great interest, when the House is expected to be crowded, there is consequently a considerable attendance at prayers.-C.

(504) Eldest son of the third Duke of Rutland, well known for his gallant conduct at Minden, and still remembered for his popularity with the army and the public. He was at this time commander-in-chief and master-general of the ordnance. He died before his father, in 1770.-C.

(505) Wonderful to Mr. Walpole only, who had a private pique against the Yorkes; no one else could wonder that deference should be paid to long services, high stations, great abilities, and unimpeached integrity.-C.

(506) Mr. Pitt's frequent fits of the gout are well known: he was even suspected of sometimes acting a fit of the gout in the House of Commons. (A reference to the Chatham Correspondence will, it is believed, remove the illiberal suspicion, that Mr. Pitt, on this, or any other occasion, was in the practice of "acting a fit of the gout." On the morning after the debate, the Duke of Newcastle thus wrote to Mr. Pitt "I shall not be easy till I hear you have not increased your pain and disorder, by your attendance and the great service you did yesterday to the public. I could not omit thanking you and congratulating you upon your great and glorious minority, before I went to Claremont. Such a minority, with such a leader, composed of gentlemen of the Greatest and most independent fortunes in the kingdom, against a majority of fourteen only, influenced by power and force, and fetched from all corners of the kingdom, must have its weight, and produce the most happy consequences to the public." Chatham Correspondence, vol. ii. p. 288.-E.]

(507) Sir John Cust's nose was rather short, as his picture by Reynolds, as well as by Walpole, testify.-C.

(508) In reference to this defeat of the ministry, Gray, in a letter to Dr. Wharton, says, "Their crests are much fallen and countenances lengthened by the transactions of last week; for the ministry, on Thursday last (after sitting till near eight in the morning), carried a small point by a majority of only forty, and on another previous division by one of ten only; and on Friday last, at five in the morning, there were 220 to 232; and by this the court only obtained to adjourn the debate for four months, and not to get a declaration in favour of their measures. If they hold their ground many weeks after this, I shall wonder; but the new reign has already produced many wonders." Works, vol. iv. p. 30.-E.

(509) Not correct. See afterwards.-E.

(510) sir Richard Warwick Bampfylde, fourth baronet; member for Devonshire.-E.

(511) Sir Charles Kemeys Tynte, fifth baronet; member for Somersetshire.-E.

(512) He died on the 13th of the ensuing month.-E.

(513) Richard, fourth Viscount, and first Earl Howe, the hero of the 1st of June; and his brother, Colonel, afterwards General Sir William, who succeeded him as fifth Viscount Howe.-C.

(514) George Simon, Viscount Newnham, afterwards second Earl of Harcourt, remarkable for a somewhat exaggerated imitation of French fashions. His father, the first Earl, was at this time chamberlain to the Queen.-C.

(515) See ant'e, p. 286. The meaning of this passage is, that the Duke of Bedford (who was president of the council) wrote a letter, which he sent to Blenheim for the Duke of Marlborough to sign, desiring his brother, Lord Charles, to abstain from again voting against the government. The Duke of Marlborough (who was privy seal) signed, as Walpole intimates, the letter; and Lord Charles, instead of attending the House, and voting, as he had done on the former night, against ministers, went down to Blenheim.-C.

(516) They never took place, and probably never were in contemplation.-E.

Letter 193 To Sir David Dalrymple.(517) Arlington Street, Feb. 23, 1764. (page 292)

Dear Sir, I am much in your debt, but have had but too much excuse for being so. Men who go to bed at six and seven in the morning, and who rise but to return to the same fatigue, have little leisure for other most necessary duties. The severe attendance we have had lately in the House of Commons cannot be unknown to you, and will already, I trust, have pleaded my pardon.

Mr. Bathoe has got the two volumes for you, and will send them by the conveyance you prescribe. You will find in them much, I fear, that will want your indulgence; and not only dryness, trifles, and, I conclude, many mistakes, but perhaps opinions different from your own. I can only plead my natural and constant frankness, which always speaks indifferently, as it thinks, on all sides and subjects. I am bigoted to none: Charles or Cromwell, Whigs or Tories, are all alike to me, but in what I think they deserve, applause or censure; and therefore, if' I sometimes commend, sometimes blame them, it is not for being inconsistent, but from considering them in the single light in which I then speak of them: at the same time meaning to give only my private opinion, and not at all expecting to have it adopted by any other man. Thus much, perhaps, it was necessary for @ne to say, and I will trouble you no further about myself.

Single portraits by Vandyck I shall avoid particularizing any farther, and also separate pieces by other masters, for a reason I may trust you with. Many persons possess pictures which they believe or call originals, without their being so, and have wished to have them inserted in my lists. This I certainly do not care to do, nor, on the other hand, to assume the impertinence of deciding from my own judgment. I shall, therefore, stop where I have stopped. The portraits which you mention, of the Earl of Warwick, Sir, is very famous and indubitable; but I believe you will assent to my prudence, which does not trouble me too often. I have heard as much fame of the Earl of Denbigh.

You will see in my next edition, that I have been so lucky as to find and purchase both the drawings that were at Buckingham-house, of the Triumphs of Riches and Poverty. They have raised even my ideas of Holbein. Could I afford it, and we had engravers equal to the task, the public should be acquainted with their merit; but I am disgusted with paying great sums for wretched performances. I am ashamed of the prints in my books, which were extravagantly paid for, and are wretchedly executed.

Your zeal for reviving the publication of Illustrious Heads accords, Sir, extremely with my own sentiments; but I own I despair of that, and every work. Our artists get so much money by hasty, slovenly performances, that they will undertake nothing that requires labour and time. I have never been able to persuade any one of them to engrave the beauties at Windsor, which are daily perishing for want of fires in that palace. Most of them entered into a plan I had undertaken, of an edition of Grammont with portraits. I had three executed; but after the first, which was well done, the others were so wretchedly performed, though even the best was much too dear, that I was forced to drop the design. Walker, who has done much the best heads in my new volumes, told me, when I pressed him to consider his reputation, that , "he had got fame enough!" What hopes, Sir, can one entertain after so shameful an answer? I have had numerous schemes, but never could bring any to bear, but what depended solely on myself; and how little is it that a private man, with a moderate fortune, and who has many other avocations, can accomplish alone? I flattered myself that this reign would have given new life and views to the artists and the curious. I am disappointed: Politics on one hand, and want of taste in those about his Majesty on the other, have prevented my expectations from being answered.

The letters you tell me of, Sir, are indeed curious, both those of Atterbury and the rest; but I cannot flatter myself that I shall be able to contribute to publication. My press, from the narrowness of its extent, and having but one man and a boy, goes very slow; nor have I room or fortune to carry it farther. What I have already in hand, or promised, will take me up a long time. The London Booksellers play me all manner of tricks. If I do not allow them ridiculous profit,(518) they will do nothing to promote the sale; and when I do, they buy up the impression, and sell it for an advanced price before my face. This is the case of my two first volumes of Anecdotes, for which people have been made to pay half a guinea, and more than the advertised price. In truth, the plague I have had in every shape with my own printers, engravers, the booksellers, besides my own trouble, have almost discouraged me from what I took up at first as an amusement, but which has produced very little of it.

I am sorry, upon the whole, Sir, to be forced to confess to you, that I have met with so many discouragements in virt'u and literature. If an independent gentleman, though a private one, finds such obstacles, what must an ingenious man do, who is obliged to couple views of profit with zeal for the public? Or, do our artists and booksellers, cheat me the more because I am a gentleman? Whatever is the cause, I am almost as sick of the profession of editor, as of author. If I touch upon either more, it will be more idly, though chiefly because I never can be quite idle.

(517) Now first collected.

(518) The following just and candid vindication of the London booksellers from the charge of rapacity on the score of "ridiculous profit," is contained in a letter written by Dr. Johnson, in March, 1776, to the Rev. Dr. Wetherell:—"It is, perhaps, not considered through how many hands a book often passes, before it comes into those of the reader; or what part of the profit each hand must retain, as a motive for transmitting it to the next, We will call our primary agent in London, Mr. Cadell, who receives our books from us, gives them room in his warehouse, and issues them on demand; by him they are sold to Mr. Dilly, a wholesale bookseller, who sends them into the country; and the last seller is the country bookseller. Here are three profits to be paid between the printer and the reader, or, in the style of commerce, between the manufacturer and the consumer; and if any of these profits is too penuriously distributed, the process of commerce is interrupted."-E.

Letter 194 To The Earl Of Hertford. Arlington Street, Feb. 24, 1764. (page 294)

As I had an opportunity, on Tuesday last, of sending you a letter of eleven pages, by a very safe conveyance, I shall say but a few words to-day; indeed, I have left nothing to say, but to thank you for the answer I received from you this morning to mine by Monsieur Monin. I am very happy that you take so kindly the freedom I used: the circumstances made me think it necessary; and I flatter myself, that you are persuaded I was not to blame in speaking so openly, when two persons so dear to me were concerned.(519) Your 'Indulgence will not lead me to abuse it. What you say on the caution I mentioned, convinces me that I was right, by finding your judgment correspond with my own-but enough of that.

My long letter, which, perhaps, you will not receive till after this (you will receive it from a lady), will give you a full detail of the last extraordinary week. Since that, there has been an accidental suspension of arms. Not only Mr. Pitt is laid up with the gout, but the Speaker has it too. We have been adjourned till to-day, and as he is not recovered, have again adjourned till next Wednesday. The events of the week have been, a complaint made by Lord Lyttelton in your House, of a book called "Droit le Roy;"(520) a tract written in the highest strain of prerogative, and drawn from all the old obsolete law-books on that question.(521) The ministers met this complaint with much affected indignation, and even on the complaint being communicated to us, took it up themselves; and both Houses have ordered the book to be burned by the hangman. To comfort themselves for this forced zeal for liberty, the North Briton, and the Essay on Woman have both been condemned(522) by Juries in the King's Bench; but that triumph has been more than balanced again, by the city giving their freedom to Lord Chief-Justice Pratt,(523) ordering his picture to be placed in the King's Bench, thanking their members for their behaviour in Parliament on the warrant, and giving orders for instructions to be drawn for their future conduct.

Lord Granby is made lord lieutenant of Derbyshire; but the vigour of this affront was wofully weakened by excuses to the Duke of Devonshire, and by its being known that the measure was determined two months ago.

All this sounds very hostile; yet, don't be surprised if you hear of some sudden treaty. Don't you know a little busy squadron that had the chief hand in the negotiation(524) last autumn? Well, I have reason to think that Phraates(525 is negotiating with Leonidas(526) by the same intervention. All the world sees that the present ministers are between two fires. Would it be extraordinary if the artillery of' both should be discharged on them at once? But this is not proper for the post: I grow prudent the less prudence is necessary.

We are in pain for the Duchess of Richmond, who, instead of the jaundice, has relapsed into a fever. She has blooded twice last night, and vet had a very bad night. I called at the door at three o'clock, when they thought the fever rather diminished, but spoke of her as very ill. I have not seen your brother or Lady Aylesbury to-day, but found they had been very much alarmed yesterday evening.(527) Lord Suffolk,(528) they say, is going to be married to Miss Trevor Hampden.

Your brother has told me, that among Lady Hertford's things seized at Dover, was a packet for me from you. Mr. Bowman has undertaken to make strict inquiry for it. Adieu, my dear lord.

P. S. We had, last Monday, the prettiest ball that ever was seen, at Mrs. Ann Pitt's,(529) in the compass of a silver penny. There were one hundred and four persons, of which number fifty-five supped. The supper-room was disposed with tables and benches back to back in the manner of an alehouse. The idea sounds ill; but the fairies had so improved upon it, had so be-garlanded, so sweetmeated, and so desserted it, that it looked like a vision. I told her she Could only have fed and stowed so much company by a miracle, and that, when we were gone, she would take up twelve basketsfull of people. The Duchess of Bedford asked me before Madame de Guerchy, if I would not give them a ball at Strawberry? Not for the universe! What! turn a ball, and dust, and dirt, and a million of candles, into my charming new gallery! I said, I could not flatter myself that people would give themselves the trouble of going eleven miles for a ball—(though I believe they would go fifty)—"Well, then," says she, "it shall be a dinner."- -"With all my heart, I have no objection; but no ball shall set its foot within my doors."

(519) It related, as we have seen, to General Conway's vote in opposition to the government.-C.

(520) "Droit le Roy, or the Rights and Prerogatives of the Imperial Crown of Great Britain." In the examination of Griffin, the printer, before the Peers, he stated that Timothy Becknock afterwards hanged in Ireland as an accomplice of George Robert Fitzgerald, had sent the pamphlet to the press, and was, Griffin believed, the author of it.-C.

(521) Gray writes to Dr. Wharton, on the 21st of February:—"The House of Lords, I hear, will soon take in hand a book lately published, by some scoundrel lawyer, on the prerogative; in which is scraped together all the flattery and blasphemy of our old law-books in honour of kings. I presume it is understood, that the court will support the cause of this impudent scribbler." Works, vol. iv. p. 30.-E.

(522) Mr. Wilkes was tried on the 21st of February, for republishing the North Briton, No. 45, and for printing the Essay on Woman, and found guilty of both.-E.

(523) The preamble of these resolutions is worthy of observation:—"Whereas the independency and uprightness of judges is essential to the impartial administration of justice, etc. this court, in manifestation of their just sense of the inflexible firmness and integrity of the Right Honourable Sir C. Pratt, lord chief justice, etc. gives him the freedom of the city, and orders his picture to be placed in Guildhall;" as if impartiality could only be assailed from one side, and as if gold boxes and pictures, and addresses from the corporation of London, were not as likely to have influence on the human mind as the favours from the crown. Their applause was either worth nothing, or it was an attempt on the impartiality of the judge.-C.

(524) The negotiation in August, 1763, already alluded to, for Mr. Pitt's coming into power. There is some reason to suppose that Mr. Calcraft was employed in the first steps of this negotiation, and this may be what Mr. Walpole here refers to.-C.

(525) Lord Bute.

(526) Mr. Pitt.

(527) The Duchess was the sister of Lady Aylesbury's first husband.-E.

(528) Henry, twelfth Earl of Suffolk, married, May 1764, Miss Trevor, who had been on the point of marriage with Mr. Child of Osterley, where he suddenly died in September, 1763. See ant'e, p. 237, letter 175.-E.

(529) Sister of the great Lord Chatham, whom she resembled in some qualities of her mind. See ant'e, p. 220, letter 157. Mr. Walpole, when some foreigner, who could not see Pitt himself, had asked him if he was like his sister, answered, in his usual happy style of giving a portrait at a touch, "Ils se ressemblent comme deux gouttes de feu!" She was privy purse to the Princess Dowager.-C.

Letter 195 To The Rev. Mr. Cole. Arlington Street, March 3, 1764. (page 296)

Dear Sir, Just as I was going to the Opera, I received your manuscript. I would not defer telling you so, that you may know it is safe. But I have additional reason to write to you immediately; for on opening the book, the first thing I saw was a new obligation to You, the charming Faithorne of Sir Orlando Bridgman, which according to your constantly obliging manner you have sent me, and I almost fear you think I begged it; but I can disculpate myself, for I had discovered that it belongs to Dugdale's Origines -Judiciales, and had ordered my bookseller to try to get me that book, which when I accomplish, you shall command your own print again; for it is too fine an impression to rob you of.

I have been so entertained with your book, that I have stayed at home on purpose, and gone through three parts of it. It makes me wish earnestly some time or other to go through all your collections, for I have already found twenty things of great moment to me. One Is particularly satisfactory to me; it is in Mr. Baker's MSS. at Cambridge; the title of Eglesham's book against the Duke of Bucks,(530) mentioned by me in the account of Gerbier, from Vertue, who fished out every thing, and always proves in the right. This piece I must get transcribed by Mr. Gray's assistance. I fear I shall detain your manuscript prisoner a little, for the notices I have found, but I will take infinite care of it, as it deserves. I have got among my new old prints a most curious one of one Toole. It seems to be a burlesque. He lived in temp. Jac. I. and appears to have been an adventurer, like Sir Ant. Sherley:(531) can you tell me any thing of him?

I must repeat how infinitely I think myself obliged to you both for the print and the use of your manuscript, which is of the greatest use and entertainment to me; but you frighten me about Mr. Baker's MSS. from the neglect of them. I should lose all patience if yours were to be treated so. Bind them in iron, and leave them in a chest of cedar. They are, I am sure, most valuable, from what I have found already.

(530) This libellous book, written by a Scotch physician, and which is reprinted in the second volume of the Harleian Miscellany, and in the fifth volume of the Somers' Collection of Tracts, was considered by Sir Henry Wotton "as one of the alleged incentives which hurried Felton to become an assassin."-E.

(531) Sherley's various embassies will be found in the collections of Hakluyt and Purchas. An article upon his travels, which were published in 1601, occurs likewise in the second volume of the Retrospective Review. The travels of the three brothers, Sir Thomas, Sir Anthony, and Master Robert Sherley, were published from the original manuscripts in 1825.-E.

Letter 196 To The Earl Of Hertford. Strawberry Hill, March 11, 1764. (page 297)

My dear lord, the last was so busy a week with me, that I had not a minute's time to tell you of Lord Hardwicke's(532) death. I had so many auctions, dinners, loo-parties, so many sick acquaintance, with the addition of a long day in the House of Commons, (which, by the way, I quitted for a sale of books,) and a ball, that I left the common newspapers to inform you of an event, which two months ago would have been of much consequence. The Yorkes are fixed, and the contest(533) at Cambridge will but make them strike deeper root in opposition. I have not heard how their father has portioned out his immense treasures. The election at Cambridge is to be on Tuesday, 24th; Charles Townshend is gone thither, and I suppose, by this time, has ranted, and romanced, and turned every one of their ideas topsyturvy.

Our long day was Friday, the opening of the budget. mr. Grenville spoke for two hours and forty minutes; much of it well, but too long, too many repetitions, and too evident marks of being galled by reports, which he answered with more art than sincerity. There were a few more speeches, till nine o'clock, but no division. Our armistice, you see, continues. Lord Bute is, I believe, negotiating with both sides; I know he is with the opposition, and has a prospect of making very good terms for himself, for patriots seldom have the gift of perseverance. It is wonderful how soon their virtue thaws!

Last Thursday, the Duchess of Queensbury(534) gave a ball, opened it herself with a minuet, and danced two country dances; as she had enjoined every body to be with her by six, to sup at twelve, and go away directly. Of the Campbell-sisters, all were left out but, Lady Strafford,(535) Lady Rockingham and Lady Sondes, who, having had colds, deferred sending answers, received notice that their places were filled up, and that they must not come; but were pardoned on submission. A card was sent to invite Lord and Lady Cardigan, and Lord Beaulieu instead of Lord Montagu.(536) This, her grace protested, was by accident. Lady Cardigan was very angry, and yet went. Except these flights, the only extraordinary thing the Duchess did, was to do nothing extraordinary, for I do not call it very mad that some pique happening between her and the Duchess of Bedford, the latter had this distich sent to her—

Come with a whistle, and come with a call, Come with a good will, or come not at all.

I do not know whether what I am going to tell you did not border a little upon Moorfields.(537) The gallery where they danced was very cold. Lord Lorn,(538) George Selwyn, and I, retired into a little room, and sat (Comfortably by the fire. The Duchess looked in, said nothing, and sent a smith to take the hinges of the door off We understood the hint, and left the room, and so did the smith the door. This was pretty legible.

My niece Waldegrave talks of accompanying me to Paris, but ten or twelve weeks may make great alteration in a handsome young widow's plan: I even think I see Some(539) who will—not forbid banns, but propose them. Indeed, I am almost afraid of coming to you myself. The air of Paris works such miracles, that it is not safe to trust oneself there. I hear of nothing but my Lady Hertford's rakery, and Mr. Wilkes's religious deportment, and constant attendance at your chapel. Lady Anne,(540) I conclude, chatters as fast as my Lady Essex(541) and her four daughters.

Princess Amelia told me t'other night, and bade me tell you, that she has seen Lady Massarene(542) at Bath, who is warm in praise of you, and said that you had spent two thousand pounds out of friendship, to support her son in an election. She told the Princess too, that she had found a rent-roll of your estate in a farmhouse, and that it is fourteen thousand a-year. This I was ordered, I know not why, to tell you. The Duchess of Bedford has not been asked to the loo-parties at Cavendish-house(543) this winter, and only once to whisk there, and that was one Friday when she is at home herself. We have nothing at the Princess's but silver-loo, and her Bath and Tunbridge acquaintance. The trade at our gold-loo is as contraband as ever. I cannot help saying, that the Duchess of Bedford would mend our silver-loo, and that I wish every body played like her at the gold.

Arlington Street, Tuesday.

You thank me, my dear lord, for my gazettes (in your letter of the 8th) more than they deserve. There is no trouble in sending you news; as you excuse the careless manner in which I write any thing I hear. Don't think yourself obliged to be punctual in answering me: it would be paying too dear for such idle and trifling despatches. Your picture of the attention paid to Madame Pompadour's illness, and of the ridicule attached to the mission of that homage, is very striking. It would be still more so by comparison. Think if the Duke of Cumberland was to set up with my Lord Bute!

The East India Company, yesterday, elected Lord Clive—Great Mogul; that is, they have made him governor-general of Bengal, and restored his Jaghire.(544) I dare say he will put it out of their power ever to take it away again. We have had a deluge of disputes and pamphlets on the late events in that distant province of our empire, the Indies. The novelty of the manners divert me: our governors there, I think, have learned more of their treachery and injustice, than they have taught them of our discipline.

Monsieur Helvetius(545 arrived yesterday. I will take care to inform the Princess, that you could not do otherwise than you did about her trees. My compliments to all your hotel.

(532) The event took place on the 6th of March.-E.

(533) For High steward of the university, between Lord Sandwich and the new Lord Hardwicke. Gray, in a letter of the 21st of February, written from Cambridge, says, "This silly dirty place has had all its thoughts taken up with choosing a new high steward; and had not Lord Hardwicke surprisingly, and to the shame of the faculty, recovered by a quack medicine, I believe in my conscience the noble Earl of Sandwich had been chosen, though, (let me do them the justice to say) not without a considerable opposition." Works, vol. iv. p. 29.-E.

(534) Catharine Hyde, the granddaughter of the great Lord Clarendon; herself remarkable for some oddities of character, dress, and manners, to which the world became less indulgent as she ceased to be young and handsome.-C.

(535) the sisters omitted were, Lady Dalkeith, Lady Elizabeth Mackenzie, and Lady Mary Coke.-C.

(536) John Duke of Montagu left two daughters; the eldest, Isabella, married first the Duke of Manchester, and, secondly, Mr. Hussey, an Irish gentleman, created in consequence of this union, Lord Beaulieu. Mary, the younger sister, married Lord Cardigan, who was, in 1776, created Duke of Montagu: their eldest son having been in 1762, created Lord Montagu. The marriage of the elder sister with Mr. Hussey was considered, by her family and the world, as a m'esalliance; and, therefore, the mistake of lord Beaulieu for Lord Montagu was likely to give offence.-C.

(537) It is now almost necessary to remind the reader, that old Bedlam stood in Moorfields.-C.

(538) Afterwards fifth Duke of Argyle.-E.

(539) He means, as subsequently appears, the Duke of Portland.-C.

(540) Lord Hertford's eldest daughter, afterwards wife of Mr. Stewart, subsequently created Earl and Marquis of Londonderry.-E.

(541) Elizabeth Russell, daughter of the second Duke of Bedford. She had four daughters; but the oldest died young.-E.

(542) Elizabeth, daughter of Henry Eyre, Esq. of Derbyshire, second wife of the first, and mother of the second, Earl of Massarene; the latter being at this time a minor. The election was probably for the county of Antrim, in which both Lord Massarene and Lord Hertford had considerable property.-C.

(543) Princess Amelia's, the corner of Harley Street; since the residence of Mr. Hope, and of mr. Watson Taylor.-C.

(544) A rent-charge which had been granted him by the late Nabob, and which, on the seizure of the territory on which it was charged by the East India Company, Lord Clive insisted that the Company should continue to pay. It was about twenty-five thousand pounds per annum.-C.

(545) A French philosopher, the son of a Dutch Physician brought into France by Louis XIV. He was the author of a dull book mis-named "De l'Esprit." We cannot resist repeating a joke made about this period on the occasion of a requisition made by the French ministry to the government of Geneva, that it should seize copies of this book "De l'Esprit," and Voltaire's "Pucelle d'Orl'eans," which were supposed to be collected there in order to be smuggled into France. The worthy magistrates were said to have reported that, after the most diligent search, they could find in their whole town no trace "de l'Esprit, et pas une Pucelle."-C. [The following is Gibbon's character of Helvetius, in a letter of the 12th of February, 1763:—"Amongst my acquaintance I cannot help mentioning M. Helvetius, the author of the famous book 'De l'Esprit.' I met him at dinner at Madame Geoffrin's, where he took great notice of me, made me a visit next day, has ever since treated me, not in a polite but a friendly manner. Besides being a sensible man, an agreeable companion, and the worthiest creature in the world, he has a very pretty wife, an hundred thousand livres a-year, and one of the best tables in Paris." He died in 1771, at the age of fifty-six.-E.]

Letter 197 To The Earl Of Hertford. Sunday, March 18, 1764. (page 300)

You will feel, my dear lord, for the loss I have had, and for the much greater affliction of poor Lady Malpas. My nephew(546) went to his regiment in Ireland before Christmas, and returned but last Monday. He had, I suppose, heated himself in that bacchanalian country, and was taken ill the very day he set out, yet he came on, but grew much worse the night of his arrival; it turned to an inflammation in his bowels, and he died last Friday. You may imagine the distress where there was so much domestic felicity, and where the deprivation is augmented by the very slender circumstances in which he could but leave his family; as his father—such an improvident father—is living! Lord Malpas himself was very amiable, and I had always loved him—but this is the cruel tax one pays for living, to see one's friends taken away before one! It has been a week of mortality. The night I wrote to you last, and had sent away my letter, came an account of my Lord Townshend's death. He had been ill treated by a surgeon in the country, then was carried improperly to the Bath, and then again to Rainham, tho Hawkins, and other surgeons and physicians represented his danger to him. But the woman he kept, probably to prevent his seeing his family, persisted in these extravagant journeys, and he died in exquisite torment the day after his arrival in Norfolk. He mentions none of his children in his will, but the present lord; to whom he gives 300 pounds a-year that he had bought, adjoining to his estate. But there is said, or supposed to be, 50,000 pounds in the funds in his mistress's name, who was his housemaid. I do not aver this, for truth is not the staple commodity of that family. Charles is much disappointed and discontented—not so my lady, who has 2000 pounds a-year already, another 1000 pounds in jointure, and 1500 pounds her own estate in Hertfordshire.(547) We conclude, that the Duke of Argyle will abandon Mrs. Villiers(548) for this richer widow; who will only be inconsolable, as she is too cunning, I believe, to let any body console her. Lord Macclesfield(549) is dead too; a great windfall for Mr. Grenville, who gets a teller's place for his son.

There is no public news: there was a longish day on Friday in our House, on a demand for money for the new bridge from the city. It was refused, and into the accompt of contempt, Dr. Hay(550) threw a good deal of abuse on the common council—a nest of hornets, that I do not see the prudence of attacking.

I leave to your brother to tell you the particulars of an impertinent paragraph in the papers on you and your embassy; but I must tell you how instantly, warmly, and zealously, he resented it. He went directly to the Duke of Somerset, to beg of him to complain of it to the Lords. His grace's bashfulness made him choose rather to second the complaint, but he desired Lord Marchmont to make it, who liked the office, and the printers are to attend your House to-morrow.(551)

I went a little too fast in my history of Lord Clive, and yet I had it from Mr. Grenville himself. The Jaghire is to be decided by law, that is in the year 1000. Nor is it certain that his Omrahship goes; that will depend on his obtaining a board of directors to his mind, at the approaching election.(552) I forgot, too, to answer your question about Luther;(553) and now I remember it, I cannot answer it. Some said his wife had been gallant. Some, that he had been too gallant, and that she suffered for it. Others laid it to his expenses at his election; others again, to political squabbles on that subject between him and his wife—but in short, as he sprung into the world by his election, so he withered when it was over, and has not been thought on since.

George Selwyn has had a frightful accident, that ended in a great escape. He was at dinner at Lord Coventry's, and just as he was drinking a glass of wine, he was seized with a fit of coughing, the liquor went wrong, and suffocated him: he got up for some water at the sideboard, but being strangled, and losing his senses, he fell against the corner of the marble table with such violence, that they thought he had killed himself by a fracture of his skull. He lay senseless for some time, and was recovered with difficulty. He was immediately blooded, and had the chief wound, which is just over the eye, sewed up—but you never saw so battered a figure. All round his eye is as black as jet, and besides the scar on his forehead, he has cut his nose at top and bottom. He is well off with his life, and we with his wit.

P. S. Lord Macclesfield has left his wife(554) threescore thousand pounds.

(546) George Viscount Malpas member for Corfe-Castle, and colonel of the 65th regiment of foot, the son of George, third Earl of Cholmondeley, and of Mary, only legitimate daughter of Sir Robert Walpole. Lord Malpas had married, in 1747, Hester daughter and heiress of Sir Francis Edwards, Bart. and by her was father of the fourth Earl.

(547) She was daughter and heiress of J. Harrison, Esq. of Balls, in Herts.-E.

(548) Probably Mary Fowke, widow of Mr. Henry Villiers, nephew of the first Earl of Jersey.-C.

(549) George, second Earl of Macclesfield, one of the tellers of the exchequer, and president of the Royal Society.-E.

(550) George Hay, LL. D. member for Sandwich, and one of the lords of the admiralty.-E.

(551) We find in the Journals, that the printers of two papers in which the libellous paragraph appeared, were, after examination at the bar, committed to Newgate. The libel itself is not recorded. The proceedings in the House of Lords were notified to Lord Hertford by the secretary of state, and the following is a copy of his reply to this communication:—"Paris, March 27th, 1764. I am informed by my friend, of the insult that has been offered to my character in two public papers, and of the zeal shown by administration in seconding the resentment of the House of Peers in my favour. Perhaps my own inclination might have led me to despise such indignities; but if others, and particularly my friends, take the matter more warmly, I am not insensible to their attention, and receive with gratitude such pledges of their regard. I had indeed flattered myself, that my course of life had hitherto created me no enemy; but as I find that this felicity is too great for any man, I am pleased, at least, to find that he is a very low one: and I am so far obliged to him for discovering to me the share I have in the friendship of so many great persons, and for procuring me a testimony of esteem from so honourable an assembly as that of the Peers of England."-C.

(552) Lord Clive made it a condition of his going to India, that Mr. Sullivan should be deprived of the lead he had in the direction at home.-C. [Soon after the election of the directors, the court took the subject of the settlement of Lord Clive's Jaghire into consideration; and a proposition, made by himself, was, on the ]6th of May, agreed to, confirming his right for ten years, if he lived so long, and provided the company continued, during that period, in possession of the lands from which the revenue was Paid.-E.]

(553) John Luther, Esq. of Myless, near Ongar, in Essex, who, on the death of Mr. Harvey, of Chigwell, stood on the popular interest ,for that county against Mr. Conyers, and succeeded.-C.

(554) Lord Macclesfield's second wife, whom he married in 1757, was a Miss Dorothy Nesbit.-E.

Letter 198 To The Earl Of Hertford. Tuesday night, March 27, 1764. (page 302)

Your brother has just told me, my dear lord, at the Opera, that Colonel Keith, a friend of his, sets out for Paris on Thursday. I take that opportunity of saying a few things to you, which would be less proper than by the common post; and if I have not time to write to Lord Beauchamp too, I will defer my answer to him till Friday, as the post-office will be more welcome to read that.

Lord Bute is come to town, has been long with the King alone, and goes publicly to court and the House of Lords, where the Barony of Bottetourt((555) has engrossed them some days, and of which the town thinks much, and I not at all, so I can tell you nothing about it. The first two days, I hear, Lord Bute was little noticed; but to-day much court was paid to him, even by the Duke of Bedford. Why this difference, I don't know: that matters are somehow adjusted between the favourite not minister, and the ministers not favourites, I have no doubt. Pitt certainly has been treating with him, and so threw away the great and unexpected progress which the opposition had made. They, good people, are either not angry with him for this, or have not found it out. The Sandwiches and rigbys, who feel another half year coming into their pockets, are not so blind. For my own part, I rejoice that the opposition are only fools, and by thus missing their treaty, will not appear knaves. In the mean time, I have no doubt but the return of Lord Bute must produce confusion at court. He and Grenville are both too fond of being ministers, not to be jealous of one another. If what is said to be designed proves true, that the King will go to Hanover, and take the Queen with him, I shall expect that clamour (which you see depends on very few men,(556) for it has subsided during these private negotiations) will rise higher than ever. The Queen's absence must be designed to leave the regency in the hands of another lady:(557) connect that with Lord Bute's return, and judge what will be the consequence! These are the present politics, at least mine, who trouble myself little about them, and know less. I have not been at the House this month; the great points which interested me are over, and the very stand has shut the door. I might like some folks out, but there are so few that I desire to see in, that indifference is my present most predominating principle. The busier world are attentive to the election at Cambridge, which comes on next Friday; and I think, now, Lord Sandwich's friends have little hopes. Had I a vote, it would not be given for the new Lord Hardwicke.

But we have a more extraordinary affair to engage us, and of which you particularly will hear much more,-indeed, I fear must be involved in. D'Eon has published (but to be sure you have already heard so) a most scandalous quarto, abusing Monsieur de Guerchy outrageously, and most offensive to Messieurs de Praslin and Nivernois.(558) In truth, I think he will have made all three irreconcilable enemies. The Duc de Praslin must be outraged as to the Duke's carelessness and partiality to D'Eon, and will certainly grow to hate Guerchy, concluding the latter can never forgive him. D'Eon, even by his own account, is as culpable as possible, mad with pride, insolent, abusive, ungrateful, and dishonest, in short, a complication of abominations, yet originally ill used by his court, afterwards too well; above all, he has great malice, and great parts to put the malice in play. Though there are even many bad puns in his book, a very uncommon fault in a French book, yet there is much wit too.(559) Monsieur de Guerchy is extremely hurt, though with the least reason of the three; for his character for bravery and good-nature is so established, that here, at least, he will not suffer. I could write pages to you upon this Subject, for I am full of it—but I will send you the book. The council have met to-day to consider what to do upon it. Most people think it difficult for them to do any thing. Lord Mansfield thinks they can—but I fear he has a little alacrity on the severe side in such cases. Yet I should be glad the law would allow severity in the present case. I should be glad of it, as I was in your case last week; and considering the present constitution of things, would put the severity of the law in execution. You will wonder at this sentence out of my mouth,(560) but not when you have heard my reason. The liberty of the press has been so much abused, that almost all men, especially such as have weight, I mean, grave hypocrites and men of arbitrary principles, are ready to demand a restraint. I would therefore show, that the law, as it already stands, is efficacious enough to repress enormities. I hope so, particularly in Monsieur de Guerchy's case, or I do not see how a foreign minister can come hither; if, while their persons are called sacred, their characters are at the mercy of every servant that can pick a lock and pay for printing a letter. It is an odd coincidence of accidents that has produced abuse on you and your tally in the same week—but yours was a flea-bite.

Thank you, my dear lord, for your anecdotes relative to Madame Pompadour, her illness, and the pretenders to her succession. I hope she may live till I see her; she is one of the greatest curiosities of the age, and I am a pretty universal virtuoso. The match Of My niece with the Duke of Portland(561) was, I own, what I hinted at, and what I then believed likely to happen. It is now quite off, and with very extraordinary circumstances; but if I tell it you at all, it Must not be in a letter, especially when D'Eons steal letters and print them. It is a secret, and so little to the lover's advantage, that I, who have a great regard for his family, shall not be the first to divulge it.

We had last night, a magnificent ball at Lady Cardigan's;(562) three sumptuous suppers in three rooms. The house, you know, is crammed with fine things, pictures, china, japan, vases, and every species of curiosities. These are much increased even since I was in favour there, particularly by Lord Montagu's importations. I was curious to see how many quarrels my lady must have gulped before she could fill her house—truly, not many, (though some,) for there were very few of her own acquaintance, chiefly recruits of her son and daughter. There was not the soup'con of a Bedford, though the town has married Lord Tavistock and Lady Betty(563)—but he is coming to you to France. The Duchess of Bedford told me how hard it was, that I, who had personally offended my Lady Cardigan, should be invited, and that she, who had done nothing, and yet had tried to be reconciled, should not be asked. "Oh, Madam," said I, "be easy as to that point, for though she has invited me, she will scarce speak to me but I let all such quarrels come and go as they please: if people, so indifferent to me, quarrel with me, it is no reason why I should quarrel with them, and they have my full leave to be reconciled when they please."

I must trouble you once more to know to what merchant you consigned the Princess's trees, and Lady Hervey's biblioth'eque— I mean for the latter. I did not see the Princess last week, as the loss of my nephew kept me from public places. Of all public places, guess the most unlikely one for the most unlikely person to have been at. I had sent to know how Lady Macclesfield did: Louis(564) brought me word that he could hardly get into St. James's-square, there was so great a crowd to see my lord lie in state. At night I met my Lady Milton(565) at the Duchess of Argyle's, and said in joke, "Soh, to be sure, you have been to see my Lord Macclesfield lie in state!" thinking it impossible— she burst out into a fit of laughter, and owned she had. She and my Lady Temple had dined at Lady Betty's,(566) put on hats and cloaks, and literally waited on the steps of the house in the thick of the mob, while one posse was admitted and let out again for a second to enter, before they got in.

You will as little guess what a present I have had from Holland— only a treatise of mathematical metaphysics from an author I never heard of, with great encomiums on my taste and knowledge. To be sure, I am warranted to insert this certificate among the testimonia authorum, before my next edition of the Painters. Now, I assure you, I am much more just—I have sent the gentleman word what a perfect ignoramus I am, and did not treat my vanity with a moment's respite. Your brother has laughed at me, or rather at the poor man who has so mistaken me, as much as ever I did at his absence and flinging down every thing at breakfast. Tom, your brother's man, told him to-day, that Mister Helvoetsluys had been to wait on him—now you are guessing,—did you find out this was Helvetius?

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