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- introduced whion by lord Abie), and lord
could be made out, moved, in the house of lords, that it was Two days after, general Conway again moved that any derogatory to the dignity of that house for a person further attempts against America would weaken the efforta labouring under the stigma of a court-martial to be raised of England against her European enemies, and, by further to the peerage. He read the sentence, and also the severe irritating the colonies, render the desired peace more difficomments appended to it by George II. The motion was cult. The resolution was carried against government by got rid of by adjournment; but on the new viscount taking two hundred and thirty-four against two hundred and his seat, which he did on the 18th of February, the marquis fifteen. The address was ordered to be presented by the of Carmarthen re-introduced his motion. Very plain whole house. The king received it coldly, and on the language was used on the occasion by lord Abingdon, the following Monday returned for answer, that he would take duke of Richmond (who was present in the battle), and lord such steps towards producing harmony betwixt Great Southampton (who was a witness on the trial). Germaine Britain and the colonies as seemed most desirable. On this, defended himself, and chancellor Thurlow declared that it general Conway moved a new address, to the effect that the was the sole prerogative of the king to confer honours, and house would consider as enemies to the king and country all that it was a high disrespect to his majesty to call the act in who should advise further prosecution of offensive war in question. Carmarthen's motion was negatived by ninety- North America. Lord North declared the address unneces. three against twenty-eight; but the marquis of Carmarthen, sary; that both sides of the house were now equally desirous the duke of Rutland, the earls of Pembroke, Craven, of peace. But he said nothing yet of resigning; and the Chatham, Derby, and Egremont, the duke of Devonshire, insatiable Rigby, who had been enjoying the sweets of office and the earl of Abingdon, entered a protest, declaring the for so many years, broke out on the opposition with much elevation of lord viscount Sackville to be fatal to the fury. Pitt dealt him a cutting rebuke, telling him the interests and glory of the crown and dignity of parliament, country was weary of paying him, on which the impudent an insult to the memory of the late sovereign, and to every placeman coolly replied :-"Undoubtedly, I am not tired of surviving branch of the house of Hanover. Under such receiving money; but am I to be told that, because men humiliating circumstances did the hero of Minden enter the receive the emoluments of office, they are the authors of our order of nobility.
ruin?" The motion was carried without a division. No quiet was now allowed to the declining ministers. As a means of retarding the evil day, the attorneyFox, on the 20th of February, strongly seconded by general, on the morrow, the 5th of March, introduced a William Pitt, made another attack on lord Sandwich, this plan for a truce, preliminary to a permanent peace. Fox, in time including the whole board of admiralty; and the motion great indignation, said the only proper way to deal with was only lost by nineteen. Another, and perhaps more such a proposition from the ministers, was to burst out formidable, enemy now stood forward. • This was general laughing and walk out of the house. In his heat, he broke Conway, who enjoyed the highest esteem of the house, and forth into declarations which should not have been made, or had been the first to propose the abolition of the fatal stamp should have been better kept. To impress on the house his act. Ile moved, on the 22nd of February, that the house astonishment at the present conduct of ministers, and his should address his majesty, entreating that he would abhorrence of their past policy, he exclaimed :-“From the " listen to the advice of his commons, that the war on the moment when I shall make any terms with one of them, I continent of North America might no longer be pursued for will rest satisfied to be called the most infamous of mankind. the impracticable purpose of reducing the inhabitants of I could not for an instant think of a coalition with men that country to obedience by force" After a great debate, who, in every public and private transaction as ministers, the house divided two hours after midnight, and ministers were had shown themselves void of every principle of honour and reduced to a majority of one, tne votes being one hundred honesty. In the hands of such men, I could not trust my and ninety-four against one hundred and ninety-three. honour even for a minute." If strange sights had not been
When this startling division was made, Fox immediately seen before in political life, and where place, power, and called on lord North to bring forward his budget, as being emolument are concerned, how astonished must those who the only thing he had to do before retiring. Colonel Barré heard Fox on that night have been, how astonished must he declared that there was no necessity to bring it forward at have been himself, when, only twelve months later, he and all, calling lord North “ the scourge of his country," and lord North were sitting side by side in that house, members wainuating that, though he had lost the confidence of the of the same ministry, and apparently the fastest friends in brine, he did not mean to resign, and stigmatised his conduct the world!
"scandalous and indecent." Lord North's almost imper- The battle for place went on briskly: the attorneyturtable temper gave way, and he retorted on Barré that his general's motion was carried without a division ; but the kunguage was "insolent and brutal.” The speaker was obliged next day, the duke of Chandos, in the lords, moved that the en interpose. Lord North named the 25th for his budget, loss of lord Cornwallis's army was owing to the neglect of
w on that day he opened it, proposing a new loan of government to have a sufficient fleet on the coast–a self1. a saillion five hundred thousand pounds, which called evident fact. On the 8th of March, lord John Cavendish
in the latter censures of Fox and Burke,who, only with too moved the following resolutions : -" That, since the year for varietate pution, ancribed the necessity for such an addition to 1775, more than one hundred million pounds had been spent 10 Wate, un the swarms of contractors, placemen, and mem-on fruitless wars; that, during that period, we had lost the Ha s arlanant, who pocketed enormous sums as the thirteen colonies of America, except the ports of New York, sewwwwx wwelling the ministerial majorities,
Charleston, and Savannah, as well as Florida, and most of
our West India islands ; that the cause of all our misfortunes, to depart and spread the news. But it proved a wild, including an expensive war with France, Spain, and Hol- snowy evening ; the carriages had not been ordered till land, was the want of foresight and ability in his majesty's midnight, and whilst the members were standing about in ministers." Ministers defeated this by the small majority crowds waiting for their equipages, rather than walk home of ten. But, on the 15th, only a week later, Sir John Rous through the snow, lord North, who had kept his carriage, moved a vote of want of confidence, which was again lost put three or four of his friends into it, and, bowing to the by a minority of only nine. It was instantly determined to other members, said, laughingly, “ You see, gentlemen, the renew this motion through lord Surrey; and lord North advantage of being in the secret. Good night!” . Siw so clearly that nothing could now avert his fall, that he Thus lord North retired from his premiership of twelve implored the king most earnestly to accept his resignation. years with the same imperturbable good nature as he had On the 10th, the king consented to his seeing the marquis of maintained uniformly through it. Had his ability as a Rockingham, and ascertaining on what basis he thought a statesman been in any degree proportionate to his temper, new administration might be formed. It was well known that we should not have lost America and most of the West George preferred the idea of lord Shelburne as premier to that Indies, Minorca, one hundred thousand men, one hundred of Rockingham, but hated and dreaded any whig cabinet, and thirty-six millions of money, together with our prestige as handing him again over to his old slavery to the great -the growth of many glorious years. But lord North could whig houses. In fact, had it not been for the overbearing sacrifice a kingdom and a continent, and go out with a jest ! and overpowering selfishness of these houses, the whigs might North was as disinterested as he was good-humoured. He have been in all along, and very different results would have retired from office poorer than he went into it, though the been the consequence. So extremely did the king dislike the perquisites of his ministry had enriched so many others. His idea of the recurrence of whig domination, that he actually father, the earl of Guildford, was still living, and he would contemplated retiring to Hanover, and remaining there. It is have found himself unable to maintain his ordinary style of certain, says Horace Walpole, that for a fortnight together living, and educate his six children, but for the wardenship the royal yacht was expediting and preparing for the of the Cinque Ports, which the king continued to him. voyage. It remains unknown whether he contemplated George, five years before North's resignation, had offered to resigning the crown altogether, or leaving a regency; but lend him twenty thousand pounds, but he took care to that he proposed a permanent retirement from this country, stipulate for its repayment. was confided to lord Holland by George IV. But by The king, in the first instance, applied to lord Shelburne degrees George became resigned to the endurance of the to form a ministry ; but he was bound by engagements to whigs rather than to the abandonment of his kingdom. Wentworth House, and honourably refused to take the lead. He sent for lord North on the 20th, and addressed him in these George then tried lord Gower as ineffectually, and so was words:—"Considering the temper of the house, I thought the compelled to send for Jord Rockingham, who accepted office, administration at an end.” Lord North instantly seized on the condition that peace should be made with America, on the words, saying :-" Then, sire, had I not better state including the acknowledgment of its independence, if unthe fact at once?” The king consented, and North hurried avoidable; administrative reform, on the basis of Mr. down to the house of commons in his court-dress, as he Burke's three bills; and the expulsion of contractors from was.
parliament, and revenue officers from the exercise of the It was five o'clock—the house densely crowded; for lord elective franehise. The king stood strongly on the reten. Surrey was going to make the great opposition motion of tion of lord chancellor Thurlow and lord Stormont in their want of confidence, and only waited for the arrival of the offices. Rockingham, with reluctance, conceded the retenminister. As North hurried up the house, there were loud tion of Thurlow, but refused that of Stormont. cries of “Order! order! Places! places!" North no The choice of lord Rockingham was such as could only sooner reached the treasury bench than he rose to make have been made where family influence and party cliques his important disclosure ; but the opposition called vocif- had more weight than the proper object of a minister—the erously for lord Surrey, while the ministerial members able management of national affairs. Rockingham, though called for lord North. Fox then moved that “ lord a very honourable man, was never a man of any ability, and Surrey do speak first," but North instantly exclaimed, though now only fifty-two, his health and faculties, such as "I rise to speak to that motion." Being now obliged they were, were fast failing. Besides this, there was a violent to hear him, for he was perfectly in order, he observed, jealousy betwixt him and lord Shelburne, who became his that, “had they suffered him at once to proceed, he might colleague, and brought in half of the cabinet. This was have saved them much useless noise and confusion; for, immediately shown by Rockingham procuring a peerage for without any disrespect to the noble lord, he was going to Dunning, who became lord Ashburton, and Shelburne show that his motion was quite unnecessary, as the ministers immediately insisting on one for Sir Fletcher Norton, who had resigned, and that that resignation was accepted by became lord Grantley. the king! That he had only wanted to announce that fact, The shape which the ministry eventually assumed was and to move an adjournment of a few days, in order to make this :-Lord Rockingham became first lord of the treasury the necessary arrangements for the new administration." and premier ; the earl of Shelburne and Charles Fox, secreNever was there a more profound surprise. The opposition taries of state ; Thurlow, lord chancellor; Camden, notcould scarcely for some time realise the actual event. The withstanding his age, president of the council ; duke of house was adjourned for five days, and the members prepared | Grafton, privy seal ; lord John Cavendish, chancellor of the
exchequer ; Keppel — made a viscount — first lord of the Dundas remained in office, as lord advocate, and John Lee admiralty ; general Conway, commander of the forces; the was made solicitor-general. Such was the new administraduke of Richmond, master-general of the ordnance; Dunning tion : it embraced, as leaders, five Rockinghamites and five
-as lord Ashburton-chancellor of the duchy of Lancaster. Shelburnites. The eleventh member of the cabinet, Thurlow, Burke was not admitted to the cabinet, for the whigs were belonged to neither side, but was the king's man. Fox saw too great sticklers for birth and family ; but his indispens- himself in office with him with great repugnance, and Burke able ability insured him the pay-mastership of the forces- felt the slight put upon him in excluding him from the by far the most lucrative office in the hands of government, cabinet. but the salary of which he was pledged to reduce by his bill. On the 28th of March, the ministry, as completed, was Rigby had held this office, as the creature of the Bedford announced in the house, and the writs for the re-elections family, fourteen years, with all its enormous emoluments having been issued, the house adjonrned for the Easter —no less than one million sterling of the country's money holidays, aud on the 8th of April met for business. The commonly lying in the hands of the holder! This enormous first affairs which engaged the attention of the new adininisbalance was notoriously made use of by Rigby in private tration were those of Ireland. We have already seen that, stock -jobbing speculations, and the whole interest of it was in 1778, the Irish, encouraged by the events in North lost to the country. Well might he denounce the change America, and by lord North's conciliatory proposals to of the ministry!
| congress, appealed to the English government for the
Colonel Barré came in for Welbore Ellis's post, as treasurer removal of unjust restrictions from themselves. Burke warmly to the navy ; Thomas Townshend became secretary of war, supported these appeals, especially as they regarded the instead of Jenkins ; Kenyon, attorney-general; the duke of freedom of trade, at the expense of his seat for Bristol. Portland, lord-lieutenant of Ireland, in place of the earl of Little relief, however, at that time, was granted, owing to Carlisle ; Burgoyne, notwithstanding his surrender at the opposition of the English merchants. An act, neverSaratoga, was made commander of the troops in Ireland ; theless, for the relief of the Roman catholics—similar to the Sir William Howe and lord Howe, the two brothers so one carried in England at the same time—was passed, and distinguished for their miserable management of the earlier another for embodying a national militia. In the following part of the American war, were duly rewarded for it—Sir year, the Irish in Dublin, Cork, and other principal cities, William, as lieutenant-general of the ordnance, and lord again inspired by the success of Ainerica, formed themselves Ilowe an admiral of the Channel fleet. The duke of Man- into non-insportation associations, binding themselves not to chata bucame lord chamberlain, and lord Howard, of use English manufactures, the like of which could be manuP.Mingham, treasurer of the household. Pitt was offered a factured in Ireland, until more liberal principles of trade place as a lord of the treasury ; but he had already declared, actuated England. on thue Kih of March, on the debate on lord John Cavendish's There were many and grievous provocations to this. To wotion, that he would never accept a subordinate situation. prevent the Americans being supplied with Irish produce,
an embargo had been laid on it since 1776, and thus their In the English house of lords, lord Shelburne moved a great staple commodities, beef and butter, were, to a great vote of censure on the ministers for their conduct to Ireland degree, without a market. To add to their distress, rents in not abrogating its oppressive laws, and the same was moved had been remorselessly raised, and by none more than by in the commons by lord Upper Ossory. Both these motions the absentee landlords. Not only had the country been were thrown out by large majorities ; but, combined with drained of money, but of its men, for the supply of the war, what was going on in Ireland, they were not lost upon the and when there was a menace of invasion by France, the English government. Early in 1780, lord North introduced country was found destitute of defence. The act passed to three bills which conceded the recent clauses, and removed embody a militia was found ineffective, and the Irish then the impediments to their trade, and they were carried almost seized the opportunity to form themselves into volunteer unanimously. These concessions were received in Ireland companies. These grew rapidly; and in May, 1779, they with testimonies of loud approbation and professions of were calculated at ten thousand men. They claimed arms, loyalty; but they only encouraged the patriot party to fresh as a militia, from government, elected their officers, and demands. These were for the repeal of the two obnoxious placed some of the leading noblemen in the country at acts which conferred the legislative supremacy regarding Irish their head. The earl of Clanricarde was their colonel in affairs on England. These acts were first, Poynings' Act, Connaught, the carl of Charlemont in Ulster.
so called from Sir Edward Poynings, and passed in the The Irish were not slow to perceive the power they were reign of Henry VII., which gave to the English privy acquiring by these associations; the English government council the right to see, alter, or suppress any bill before the quickly perceived it too, and took alarm. So soon as the Irish parliament, money bills excepted ; the second was an danger of invasion diminished, the secretary of state act of George I., which asserted in the strongest terms the instructed the lord-lieutenant to discourage the volunteer right of the king, lords, and commons of England to legismovement, by “all proper and gentle means." But the late for Ireland. Irish knew better than to take these hints; and, by the end Grattan determined to call these acts in question in the of 1779, the volunteers of Ireland numbered fifty thousand. Irish parliament, and at least abolish them there. This
It was when Ireland felt that it was thus in an unusually alarmed even Burke, who, writing to Ireland, said, “Will powerful position for being heard, the English being fully no one stop that madman, Grattan?" But Grattan, on the engaged with the growing difficulties of the American and 19th of April, 1780, submitted to the Irish house of now of the European war, that Henry Grattan made his commons a resolution asserting the perfect legislative appearance, as the head of the opposition, in the Irish house independence of Ireland. He did not carry his motion then, of commons. He had entered that house in 1775, and had but his speech-in his own opinion, the finest he ever made been constantly acquiring the confidence of his countrymen. had a wonderful effect on the Irish public. Other matters
When the Irish parliament assembled in October, 1779, connected with sugar duties, and an Irish mutiny bill, in Grattan moved an amendment in favour of “free trade," a which Grattan took the lead, fanned the popular flame, and phrase then happily coined, and since made universal. He the volunteer body at the same time continued to assume carried it; and, whilst the volunteers of Dublin lined the such rapidly-growing activity that it was deemed necessary streets, with the premier peer of Ireland, the duke of by government to send over the earl of Carlisle to supersede Leinster, at their head, the address, thus amended, was the earl of Buckinghamshire, and to give him an able carried by the whole house of commons up to the lord- secretary in Mr. Eden. But this did not prevent the united lieutenant. The answer of the king proving vague and body of Irish volunteers meeting at Dungannon on the 15th unsatisfactory, Grattan moved, and carried by a large of February, 1782. There were two hundred and forty-two majority, a resolution, “That, at this time, it would be delegates, with their general-in-chief, lord Charlernont, at inexpedient to grant new taxes ;” and, instead of voting the their head, and they unanimously passed a resolution supplies, as usual, for two years, they were passed for only prepared by Grattan, " That a claim of any body of men six months. He was supported by Mr. Flood, the vice- other than the king, lords, and commons of Ireland, to bind treasurer; and Mr. Burgh, the prime serjeant; the latter this kingdom, is unconstitutional, illegal, and a grievance." exclaiming, “Ireland is not in a state of peace; it is on the 22nd, Grattan moved a similar resolution in the smothered war. England has sown her dragon's teeth, and Irish house of commons, which was only got rid of by the they have sprung up armed men!"
| attorney-general asking for some time to consider it. The proceedings in the Irish parliament and language like Grattan employed the time asked for by bringing to the this operated on the quick feelings of the populace, and four notice of the Irish house of commons five acts of parliament or five thousand people rose in riot in Dublin armed with passed in Great Britain in the preceding session, into which swords and pistols, calling for free trade and for the short the name of Ireland had been introduced contrary to the money bill then proposed by Grattan. They stopped the rights of that country. speaker, and endeavoured to force him to swear that he Two days only before Grattan had made his motion on would vote as they wished. This they repeated with other Irish rights, that is, on the 20th of February, he seconded a members proceeding to the house, and not finding Scott, the bill for further relief of Roman catholics in Ireland, introattorney-general, against whom they were especially bitter, duced by Mr. Gardiner. The bill was passed, and wonderthey rushed to his house and sacked it, vowing they would fully increased the influence of Grattan by adding the have his life. The volunteers appeared rather to enjoy than grateful support of all the catholics. Such was the tone of actively to suppress this ebullition,
| Ireland, and such the transcendent influence of Grattan