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'Were a man in this country,' remarks the most recent biographer of Burke, of great capacity and attainments, though of little influence or fortune, such for instance as Mr. Burke himself was, deliberately to choose his side in politics as he would a profession-that is, for the advantages it is likely to bring-he would, probably, not be a Whig. That numerous and powerful body is believed to be too tenacious of official consequence to part with it to talents alone, and too prone to consider high rank, leading influence, and great family connexion, rather than abilities of humble birth, as of right entitled to the first offices of government. They are willing, indeed, to grant emolument, but not to grant power, to any other than lawyers, who do not materially interfere with their views on the chief departments of government; an opinion which, notwithstanding the profession of popular principles, is believed to have made them sometimes unpopular in the great market of public talent, and to have driven many useful allies into the ranks of the Tories.*

period before us, like those of most other days, were of two kinds, of whom Lord Shelburne and John Wilkes may be taken as types. The former headed the party which represented the views of Lord Chatham, who, in moving an address to the king, in 1770, expressed the opinion that an additional number of knights of the shire ought to be added as a balance against the weight of several corrupt and venal boroughs, which, perhaps,' he remarked, 'could not be lopped off entirely without the hazard of a public convulsion!' Wilkes, on the other hand, felt no scruple, and observed no limits. Headstrong, selfish, and venal, he viewed every thing in reference to his own base interests, acting the bully, or the hypocrite, just as he deemed it most likely to advance his sinister designs. The blunders of his enemies gave him great advantage by which he was not slow to profit, but the fame and the influence of the demBoth Fox and Burke belonged to the Rockingham faction, and the Correspond-lived to inherit the contempt and neglect agogue is necessarily brief, and Wilkes ence of the latter, recently published, clear-which he so well merited. Our author has ly reveals the want of harmony and consequent lack of confidence, amongst the lead-oose declamation-we might use a more gone out of his way to indulge in much ers of the administration. The death of significant term-purporting to be a deLord Rockingham, which occurred in the scription of the Radical Reform Class of following July, led to the premiership of the past fifty years. There is an irritabil Lord Shelburne, under whom both Fox and ity and want of discrimination in his alluBurke declined to serve. Several members, sions to this class for which it would be however, of the former cabinet remained difficult to account, were it not customary in office, and considerable business talent with writers who can palliate the dishonesty was secured in the adhesion of William of Charles James Fox, in signing, as is Pitt, who held the chancellorship of the alleged, his name in favor of vote by ballot, exchequer, and was loud in his profession annual parliaments, and other sweeping of reform principles. It will be remembered that Lord Shelburne's was the most humoring the popular party,' to throw suschanges, merely from a careless desire of popular section of the Whig party. They picion on the motives and to impeach the were in fact the movement party of their conduct of the more upright and consistent day, the Whig-radical division of the liberal friends of liberty. We give the following host. Yet to this party did the second as a sample, simply cautioning our readers William Pitt belong, the man whose name was speedily to become the terror of the friends of liberty, and the confidence and hope of despotism, throughout Europe. Such are the changes which we witness in the course of human affairs

Tempora mutantur

Et nos cum illis mutamur.

In this respect the future prime minister of George III., who was to lead the crusade against European freedom, was greatly in advance of Burke, by whose timely conversion his nefarious designs were to be so powerfully aided. The reformers of the

* Prior, p. 233.

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against estimating the writer's impartiality, or judgment, by it. The good taste it evinces is on a par with its discrimination.

'To the exertions of Wilkes and Tooke, aided by the license of the London rabble, is to be traced the birth of that spirit of false democracy, which under various names duped thousands; and disturbed English society for the succeeding sixty years. One picture of the tribunes of that licentious party answers for their character and purposes at all periods of their history. What knaves! what slanderers of England and its institutions! and side by side with the charlatans and adventurers, what vain and futile theorists, imbecile in devising good, influential in aggravating evils! The aristocratic gambler, driven to politics

from his craving for excitement; the notorious ing. A man must have large confidence in profligate, declaiming in favor of political the ignorance or gullibility of his readers, purity; the vain dreamer, the fantastic schemer, to have penned it. the puerile theorist, seeking food for their vanity in public notoriety, or hoping by popular connexions to impart strength to their weak abilities: such are the leaders who periodically return for the disturbance and delusion of the

'But though the representative system required reform, its evils were exaggerated. This was found to be the case when men began to reason about the remedy. A large park-a small mound of earth-a castle in members, but large towns had no spokesmen in the House of Commons. That was the evil; yet what was to be the remedy? Was England to be placed under the tyranny of a multitudinous constituency? Was the country to be cut up into rectangular districts, and the number of the population taken as the standard of elective right? To these questions the common sense of the country answered in the negative. Many thought, not unreasonably, that the rotten boroughs had their advantages. Men of talent; lawyers of character and political promise; country gentlemen of public spirit greater than their pri vate fortunes; intelligent merchants, who had no local connexions, and whose probity recoiled from the purchase of a few hundred pauper-electors; men of leisure and refined habits, averse to the electioneering chicane, tumult, and obloquy attendant on large constituencies: these various classes of men were enabled to enter public life through rotten boroughs, and to preserve their mental independence free from degrading bondage to popular fanaticism.'-lb. p. 75.

untaught and neglected masses, who smoulder in the purlieus of our great towns. With ruins-were severally represented by a pair of them are mixed, perchance, some antiquarian dotard, who sees perfection in the parchment constitutions of former ages. His honest folly contrasts with the coarse ambition of the bloated aldermen seeking to buy popular applause at so much per shout. And hearken to yon briefless barrister, advertising his fluency of vituperation, while 'hear hims' are cried by the quack, who has risen into bad eminence by calumniating the faculty, or by the clergyman, whose vices have deprived him of his parish! Such are the prominent figures of that grovelling school of reform, founded by Wilkes and Horne Tooke, and continued to later generations, by their equally vicious, but far more contemptible successors. For in truth the polluted characters of the tribunes of the British populace did more for half a century to retard the growth of a true public spirit, and to confirm the power of an oligarchy, than the government of Mr. Pitt, or the eloquence of Mr. Canning, to strengthen and uphold the borough system. It was the lives of the leaders, and not the purposes of their party, which for so many years made Radical a synonyme for rascal. And of all the deceivers of the multitude, none were more worthy of grave censure than the aristocratic libertines, who laughed in their orgies over the success of their efforts in popular delusion.'-Ib. p. 72–74.

The same want of discrimination and candor is visible in our author's allusions to the American colonies. A blind and unheeding attachment to things as they are,' leads him to misapprehend the characThat there were bad men then, as now, ter of the colonists, and to attribute to them we doubt not-men who traded in patriot-qualities of which they were wholly destiism and laughed at the confidence they in- tute. This is the more discreditable as spired; but that this was the case with the sufficient time for reflection has been allowmajority, or even with a large proportion, of ed, and candid men of all parties are now those who thought or acted for the people, united in opinion, that if ever a justification at the eventful period referred to, we unhes- of resistance was made out, it existed itatingly deny. In private morals, even clearly in the case of the American States. the worst of this class scarcely sunk below If our author's theory is to be admitted, the Fox and Sheridan, whilst the great body of loss of our American colonies is another of them were infinitely their superiors. But the obligations conferred upon us by our so it has ever been. The vices of the great Established Church. No forethought, or are glossed over and forgotten, whilst those forbearance, would have sufficed to prevent of the people are magnified and repeated the catastrophe. The infatuation of sucad nauseam. The only effectual cure for cessive cabinets was not requisite, nor the this is in the people having writers of their palpable violation of guaranteed rights reown. History has hitherto been in the quired. The same result must have enhands of the aristocracy, and it has told sued, though at a period somewhat more only a one-sided tale. Let us have fair remote, from the operation of causes inplay, and we shrink not from the compari-herent in the dissenting and puritanical son. We can scarcely refrain from smiling spirit' prevalent amongst the colonies. The when we read such rigmarole as the follow- following brief passage explains our au

thor's theory, and does discredit to his un- to bear malice, or to live in ill-will. My derstanding. friendships are perpetual, my enmities are not so.' The public, however, were not In losing the American colonies, England misled. They saw through the sophism, had to bear that which was certain to occur. and, as Mr. Wilberforce remarked, exFor there were many reasons why the Amer-pected from the unnatural coalition' a proican colonists must, in the course of things, geny stamped with the features of both have revolted from the mother country. A dissenting and puritanical spirit swayed their parents, the violence of the one party, and minds, and influenced their manners. They the corruption of the other.' The coalition left England sour and discontented, and ab- which ensued was the great blot on the sence from the mother country did not soften public reputation of Fox, and did more their angry feelings. Their religion and poli- than any other event to damage, at a subsetics were equally adverse to all submission of quent period, his nobler efforts against the mind and opinion, and they were not satisfied military crusade, which the monarch comwith merely dissenting, but they were fanatically anxious to force their neighbors into their manded, and William Pitt preached. On way of thinking. Their manners partook of the meeting of parliament, in December their religion. Rigid and severe, they had no 1782, it was computed that Fox numbered community of feeling with the social ideas of about ninety followers, Lord North one the English people. Those things which have hundred and twenty, and the minister one drawn forth the love and veneration of the hundred and forty, the rest being unattachEnglish nation were never regarded by them ed. In an early division Lord North voted with attachment and pride. In short, there with the ministers, and Mr. Fox was left in was no moral union between England and the This lesson was not colonies. Thus their separation was certain a small minority.

to occur, inasmuch as the colonists inherited without its effect, and what followed is thus the energy and perseverance of the AngloSaxon race.'-Ib. p. 128.


'But in the ensuing January, fresh endeaWe turn from these exceptionable mat- Vors were made to bring Fox and North together. Some of the partizans of the former ters to pursue the course of the history. were most anxious that such a junction should Lord Shelburne's administration was as- take place. Seeing that Fox was in a small sailed by the united forces of Lord North minority, Burke approved of the junction. So and of Mr. Fox. The opposition of the far as he was concerned, there was not very former was natural, that of the latter fac- much inconsistency in allying himself with tious and selfish. The Tory minister was Lord North. They were both opposed to parto be calculated on as an opponent, but the liamentary reform, and Burke adhered to hostility of the popular leader served to committed himself to popular principles. And aristocratic opinions, while Fox avowedly bring his own sincerity into doubt, and to in the actual state of the case, Burke thought induce the belief that his public life was every attempt should be made to crush Lord swayed by personal ambition and spleen, Shelburne. He thought that the minister rather than by an enlightened regard to the would prove the mere creature of the sovenational welfare. He had frequently de- reign, and that a party should be formed for nounced Lord North as an incapable and taking the practical management of the public vicious minister, 'the most infamous of his creatures. affairs out of the hands of King George and He favored, therefore, the mankind,' as the great criminal of the idea of the coalition. Such was not the case state, whose blood must expiate the calam- with Richard Brinsley Sheridan, who was ities he had brought upon his country:' a just at that time rising into political eminence. man with whom, if he should ever act, he He strongly disapproved of the idea. Rewould be content to be thought for ever in-markably shrewd, with great common sense, famous.' With such a man, unchanged in spirit and principles, were Fox and his Whig associates content to enter into a league offensive and defensive. Over the base recklessness of the procedure, he attempted to throw the veil of a generous forgiveness.' 'It is neither wise nor noble,' he said in his defence, to keep up animosities for ever. It is neither just nor candid to keep up animosity, when the cause of it is no more. It is not my nature

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and leading a life which brought him into well calculated for a barometer of the politicontact with various classes of society, he was cal atmosphere. He had great knowledge of ef feet, and he perceived that the proposed junction would not satisfy the public. He stren uously dissuaded Fox from thinking of it. But Lord John Townshend, one of the wits and pains to accomplish it. Lord Loughborough ornaments of the Foxite party, took great also approved of the proposition. By joining with North, Fox would gain numbers to his standard, and on the elevation of Lord North

to the Upper House, upon old Lord Guildford's menaced him? The audacity of Fox's purdeath, Fox would be the recognized leader of a host of members in the Lower House. On the other hand, by junction with Fox, who was so popular, Lord North would be relieved from the odium under which he labored. Such was the manner in which the coalitionists reasoned.'-lb. pp. 132–134.

pose, more than the violence of his language, roused King George to make every effort to secure his independence. But it was in vain. Shelburne had not the required firmness to deliver his king; Lord North was pledged to Fox. Again on the 24th of March, the king for the second time implored Pitt to become first minister, but Pitt firmly declined. And thus the king, on the 5th of April, 1783, was

nominee of Charles Fox, as first lord of the

Prior maintains that Burke was a reluctant party to the coalition, strongly object-compelled to receive the Duke of Portland, the ing to it at first, and yielding eventually treasury.-Ib. pp. 156, 159. only in compliance with the earnest solicitations of Fox. No evidence of this, how- Thus was formed the celebrated coaliever, is adduced, and the presumption of tion ministry, which did more to damage the case is opposed to it. In his Corres- the reputation of public men than any pondence it is referred to in the genuine event since the pension and peerage of the spirit of party tactics, and with a morality elder Pitt. From the moment,' says Bishof which in other matters he would have op Watson, this coalition was formed, I been ashamed. Speaking of his party, he lost all confidence in public men. In the says, and this appears to have been deemed Foxite Whigs coalescing with the Tories a sufficient vindication, Without that to turn out Lord Shelburne, they destroyed junction, they could have no chance of my opinion of their disinterestedness and coming in at all.'* On the 17th of Feb-integrity. I clearly saw, that they sacriruary, 1783, the two statesmen occupied ficed their public principles to private inthe same bench, and their followers spoke trigue, and their honor to ambition.' and voted as one party. The minister was, consequently, left in successive minorities, and immediately resigned. What followed is thus described.

'The king was in great embarrassment. He saw nothing but a prospect of humiliation, and struggled hard against what he looked on as a disgrace. He tried to make a ministry through Earl Gower; and next, he tried with the Duke of Portland and Lord North, on condition that Thurlow should remain Chancellor, to which Fox would not consent; and he then tendered the Treasury to Pitt. Never was a more dazzling offer made to a young man; never was a tempting honor more judiciously declined. Pitt, though naturally elated by the brilliant compliment, though! that he would have to fight the coalition at great disadvantage, from the course pursued by Lord Shelburne in resigning. For it was one thing to resist the confederacy without succumbing, and it was quite another thing to oppose it as a minister after the rapid fall of Shelburne. With wary sagacity he resolved to bide his


'Again the king had recourse to Lord North, who at once declared that he could do nothing without his ally. The king disliked Fox more than ever, as he had displayed such audacity in making the coalition. The insulting language with which in former years Fox had spoken of his character, might have been pardoned to the license of a young orator, but how could a manly sovereign endure such domineering authority as that with which Fox

Burke's Correspondence, iii. 14.

But one feeling prevailed throughout the nation. Men of all classes, and of every shade of opinion, were disgusted, and it was not long before the popular leader saw that he had lost his way. His support of Mr. Pitt's annual motion on reform, which was opposed by Lord North, failed to recover his popularity; and when, on the discussions respecting the Indian bill, the personal views of the monarch were used to influence the votes of the Upper House, he failed of the support which alone would have sustained him against the influence of the court. On the 18th of December, the two ministers were dismissed without the ceremony of a personal interview. Their talents and parliamentary strength availed them nothing against the king, for the country acquiesced in their defeat, and did not conceal its satisfaction at the due punishment of their selfish and tortuous policy. An important lesson is taught by this passage of our parliamentary history, and we trust that our own times will bear it in mind. In public, as in private life,

honesty is the best policy!' An opposite course may answer a temporary purpose, but woe be to the statesman who relies Fox never recovered from the injury it inupon it for permanent reputation or profit. flicted.

It revealed the weakness of his character, and was an insuperable barrier to the confidence which he afterwards solicited, and by which he might possibly

have defeated the despotic policy of his ter in the result of a general election, enopponent. couraged him to persevere notwithstanding William Pitt was immediately created the successive defeats he encountered. First Lord of the Treasury, and Chancel- Fourteen divisions occurred between the lor of the Exchequer, and might well have 12th of January and the 8th of March, the been daunted by the imposing array against dates and numbers of which were as folhim. lows:

"The Foxites could scarcely believe Pitt se- January 12th. 232 to 193 majority rious in his intention of encountering them. On the 17th, Fox had delivered a stirring invective against Pitt and his party. 'What


196 to 142




205 to 184




222 to 214



man,' cried he, 'who has the feelings, the February 2nd. 223
honor, the spirit, or the heart of a man,
would, for any official dignity or emoluments

3rd. 211 to 187




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which the honorable gentleman (Pitt) pro-
poses to occupy. Boys, without judgment, ex-
perience of the sentiments, suggested by a
knowledge of the world, or the amiable de- March
cencies of a sound mind, may follow the head-
long course of administration thus precipi-
tately, and vault into the seat while the reins
of government are placed in other hauds, but
the minister who can bear to act such a dis-

honorable part, and the country that suffers
it, will be mutual plagues and curses to each
other.'-lb. pp. 193, 194.

The last of these divisions was the final victory of the coalition. Parliament was dissolved, and the general election of 1784 gave a large majority to the king.

From Bentley's Miscellany.


The young premier, however, was equal to the occasion, and though left in a minority on various divisions, was sustained by the confidence of the king and the nation. To the policy of William Pitt we need not express our hostility. It was founded on apostacy, gathered strength under the shadow of the prerogative, and would probably have succeeded amongst any other people. in extinguishing the love of freedom. Inveterately hostile to liberty, it constituted CERTAIN TOURISTS.-OF THE INCENthe rallying point and the hope of the TIVES TO TRAVEL.-Mighty as is the rush hole family of European despots, whilst from England when the season is over, to to our own country it was productive of a strange localities, yet all are not influenced thousand evils still bitterly felt amongst us. by the same motives. Many save up at At first unassuming and moderate, it after- home for nine months of the year, to squanwards proceeded with giant's strides, ma- der abroad the other three; many more go king fear its rule, and arbitrary power the off to pull in their expenditure. Some go object of its worship. It would betoken-there are really invalids-for health; little candor, however, if we did not ad- others, hypochondriacs, to see whether the mit the ability, fortitude, and skill, with which he addressed himself to his mission. His adversary had placed himself in a false position, and was, consequently, exposed without defence, or shelter, to the raking fire directed against him. Hated by the king, and mistrusted by the people, Fox had no hope but in his present parliamentary majority, and that was hourly threatened by the prospect of a dissolution. The feeling of the country-though not probably in its full extent-was known to both Fox and Pitt, and the confidence of the lat

foreign doctors cannot find out something really the matter with them; others go to write books, and others to make sketches; but by far the greater proportion travel from motives of popular imitation, known commonly as fashion. Take the members of a family in whatever circle you please, and you will find, that however high they may themselves carry their heads, there is somebody whom they look up to, and studiously endeavor to imitate in every particular of their domestic or family existence. This feeling extends both ways in the scale of so

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