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gested; but there are no limits to conjecture, and perhaps it might be carrying the spirit of speculation too far, to suppose that young Horne had been inoculated by approximation to royalty, and first caught the holy flame of freedom, at Leicester House; the altars of which then smoked continually with popular incense, while strains were there chaunted to liberty, by the best poets of the age, worthy of the days of Harmodius and Aristogiton.

CHAPTER II.

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FROM 1765 TO 1767.

Short Retrospect of Public Affairs on the Accession of George III.—Characters of the Lords Chatham and Bute.-The Subject of this Memoir determines to take an active Part in the Disputes of that Day.-Revisits France; where he meets with Mr. Wilkes.- Copy of a singular Letter transmitted from Montpellier. He repairs to Italy.

IT may be here necessary to interrupt the course of this narrative, in order to take a survey of the political hemisphere, at this period, with a view to discover those motives which gave a new as well as a peculiar direction to Mr. Horne's career, and influenced the whole tenor of his future life.

The latter part of the reign of George II was both happy and fortunate; for the nation, firmly united at home, appeared, at the same time, to

be formidable and triumphant abroad. While a new empire was founded in the east, our colonies in the western hemisphere seemed to be connected to the mother country less by the ties of allegiance, which are often feeble and precarious, than by a reciprocity of interests and good offices, producing protection and kindness on one side, followed by love, veneration, and voluntary obedience, on the other.

The youthful monarch, who now succeeded to the crown, commenced his reign under the most propitious auspices, by providing for the future independence of the judges, and endeavouring to gratify all the partialities of a loyal and affectionate people. In his first speech from the throne, he gloried in being “born a Briton," and asserted, at the same time, "that the civil and religious rights of his loving subjects, were equally dear with the most valuable prerogatives of his crown."

The country, indeed, was still at war; but that war was just, popular, and successful. The finances were regulated with a considerable degree of prudence; and the resources of the state, instead of being exhausted, seemed multiplied by diffusion. Fleets were manned, equipped, and sent out, with an expedition never before witnessed; and England, as heretofore,

did not alone bleed in the contest; for, notwithstanding the joint operation of civil and religious antipathies, Ireland poured forth her gallant sons, and the brave and hardy peasantry of the north, for the first time, were called into action in the common cause.

All this was effected by the talents, the vigour, and the virtues of one man, whose portrait requires the pencil of a master: I shall, therefore, merely attempt to sketch the outline, and that, too, with a feeble and a trembling hand.

The first William Pitt, a great and accomplished statesman, at the period alluded to, still remained at the head of the administration *; and

*This was termed the Pitt and Newcastle ministry, the former conducting the affairs of the state, while to the latter was entrusted the management of the house of commons. The following was the arrangement in 1760, at the accession of George III.

1. Duke of Newcastle, first lord of the treasury.

2. Mr. Legge, chancellor of the exchequer.

3. Lord Henley, chancellor.

4. Duke of Bedford, lord-lieutenant of Ireland.

5. Earl of Holderness, secretary of state for the foreign department.

6. Mr. Pitt, secretary of state for the home department.

7. Earl Granville, president of the council.

8. Earl Temple, lord privy seal.

9. Lord Anson, first commissioner of the admiralty.

10. Lord Ligonier, commander-in-chief.

11. Viscount Barrington, secretary at war.

conducted the affairs of that nation, which he had raised from a state of abasement, to an unexampled pitch of glory. Victorious in both hemispheres, and on either element; while he enlarged the acquisitions of Britain by land, the flag of the United Kingdoms triumphed on every sea; commerce and manufactures flourished, as in times of profound peace; and the miseries of war were for the first time unknown. Detesting corruption, he left the management of parties to others, and, trusting to his own mastergenius alone for success, boldy pointed the British thunder at the heads of the enemies of his country; and taught France to acknowledge the superiority of a small but free nation over a great and despotic empire. It might be likened to the contest of Greece, in her best days, against Persia; it was Themistocles, with a handful of Athenians, overcoming the fleets and the armies of the Great King!

Without patrimony, without family connexions, without titles, this wonderful man, after being deprived of his commission as a

12. Mr. George Grenville, treasurer of the navy.

13. Sir Charles Pratt, afterward lord Camden, attorney general.

This proved not only the most successful, but also the most popular ministry, ever witnessed in Great Britain.

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