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considering what Kings are in general, was a wonder that he could make any advance at all; and with the statement of this unparalleled act of royal munificence, was also sent a statement of the Prince's debts, which exhibited a scene of royal extravagance, unparalleled in all the annals of European royalty. The Whigs were then in power, and as he had attached himself to their party, as a matter of gratitude, that is, if gratitude and a Whig have the slightest relationship with each other, seven hundred and eighty thousand pounds were voted by the conscientious representatives of the people, to enable the royal libertine, to emancipate himself from his honourable and dishonourable encumbrances. To call this by any other terms than a royal and magnificent robbery on the public purse, were an abuse of language. His father, and the father of his people, was on account of this extraordinary generosity on the part of his faithful Commons, enabled to deposit a few more hundred thousands in the bank of Venice, his own bank of England not being considered sufficiently good security for the large investments which GEORGE Guelph was in the habit of transmitting to his foreign bank.
Two or three years had scarcely elapsed, when the rumour of the royal embarrassments again intruded itself upon the public ear. At this period, however, the perpetuation of the illustrious house of Brunswick became a matter of very serious consideration with certain individuals, who from prejudice or ignorance attached a greater degree of importance to the subject than, in reality, it deserved. Carlton House was in a state of siege by duns of all description, the Jewish tribe being the foremost in the attack, and evidently constituting the forlorn hope. The bonds of the heir apparent to the Crown of England, were scarcely negotiable on Change, at a discount of 50 per cent. The carriages of the prospective King of England were seized in the streets by John Doe and Richard Roe, and the house of George Guelph junior, was declared in a positive state of insolvency. A meeting of his creditors was called, , and it was resolved that an application should be made to the father of the insolvent, offering to take their debts by instalments, if the father would become security To this the father returned an answer, that he was very poor, that he had a rising and expensive family, and referred the applicants to “his faithful Commons," who would undoubtedly see that his son was relieved, either by the Insolvent Court, or by an immediate advance of money, from his present embarrassments. The Commons were well disposed to meet the wishes of the considerate and liberal father, but there was a condition attached to it, which for a time defeated all the hopes of the creditors of ever getting a farthing, and this condition was, that he should marry. He had already one wife living in th? person of Mrs. Fitzherbert, who being herself a married woman, when she married the Prince, and a Catholic into the bargain, there was no insurmountable obstacle existing to his marrying one of the female dead weights of the German families, and as he had been himself for some time a dead weight upon his own country, a similarity of condition would it was presumed, produce a happy marriage. The FATHER OF HIS PEOPLE told his son that it was for the benefit of his people that he should marry, and as we are bound to benefit our relations, it was suggested by the father, that he had a niece then living in Germany, who, as having the blood of the Brunswickers pure in her veins, this match of all others was the most eligible that could be fixed upon. It happened, however, that marriage of all acts, was the last which the heir apparent had any inclination to perform; as a patriot Prince, it was, however, incumbent upon him to perform it for the benefit of his people, (Q. E. D.) and as an insolvent, it was incumbent upon him to perform it for the benefit of his creditors.
The bane and antidote were now before him, the payments of his debts and a wife, or insolvency and Mrs Fitzherbert; it was a most trying alternative for him; the benefit which the people would derive from his marriage, was, as became a patriotic Prince, thrown into the scale, and the consent was given to the marriage. He had now done much for the people, according to the jargon of the Court, and, therefore, out of pure gratitude, the people could not object to do much for him. The father of that people also stepped in very opportunely on the occasion, and down came another message to “his faithful Commons,” recommending, or otherwise commanding that a suitable provision be made for the royal pair, and parentally announcing that his son was in great pecuniary embarrassments, and appealing to their liberality, (conscience having nothing to do in the business,) whether they could allow his eldest son, their future monarch, the pride and glory of the Guelphs and Brunswickers, to enter the married state with a debt verging fast upon a million on his head, and in danger of baving even the marriage bed swept from under them, to satisfy the demand of some merciless creditor. It was to bim an appalling condition; the honour of the country demanded that an immediate arrangement of the debts should take place, and further to show their gratitude for the great sacrifice he had made for the benefit of the people, an act was passed settling on the Prince and his wife £125.000 a year, which with the rents of the duchy of Cornwall, £13.000 a year, and other perquisites, the usual appendages of royalty, formed an annual income of £150.000. This sum was certainly adequate to support the so much talked of dignity of the heir apparent to the Crown, but by the royal individual it was found to be far insufficient, for a very few years afterwards, this most accomplished of all spendthrifts, or, as his mother was wont to call him, " the hopes of the family,"* informed his father that he was again in trouble, inconsistent with the dignity and honour of the heir apparent to the Crown. The King was always a staunch stickler for the dignity and honour of the Crown, and
This panegyric of the Queen, of her darling son, was always a source of banter to the Duke of York, who regarded it in.some respects, as a degradation of bimself. One day when the royal brothers bad been drinking deeply, and ibe Prince of Wales was literally lying under the table in a state of beastly intoxication, the Duke of York actuated by a spirit of mischief, conducted the Queen to the place, and pointing to the intoxicated Prince, exclaimed “ There mother, there lie the hopes of the family."
consequently, as both were in danger of suffering on account of the condition to which the heir apparent had reduced himself, it became a national concern, that the most prompt and efficient means should be adopted for rescuing them from the disgrace which awaited them. The Crown, therefore, in its dignity and honour, sent down another message to the faithful guardians of the public purse, announcing to them the great embarrassments in which the heir apparent was involved; not, however, from any extravagance or want of proper manage ment in his pecuniary affairs, but from the extreme pressure of the times, and the high price of all the articles of subsistence. According to the spirit of the English Constitution, the King can do no wrong, and the faithful Commons” who are or ought to be the preservers and guardians of that Constitution, fully concurring in that part of it relative to the King, could not possibly believe that the King of England could tell a lie; and, therefore, fully attaching their belief to the royal assertion, that the embarrassments of the heir apparent did not arise from extravagance, they did not consider it necessary to make any inquiry into the real cause of those embarrassments, butimmediately granted to the royal profligate £60.000 for three years, or in other words, they raised his income to £210.000 a year, which he was allowed to squander in the grossest of indulgences, and at a time when the people was literally starving for bread.
It is necessary that some of these circumstances should be strictly borne in mind, as they had a powerful influence on the character of the Duke of Clarence, involving him in certain transactions, from which not one of the three royal brothers escaped without a damning stain, which was never afterwards obliterated.
On the Prince of Wales assuming the Regency in 1812, the public purse was again drained to satisfy the demands of the royal cormorant. It was allowed to be a change in the condition of the Prince of Wales, to that of Prince Regent, and, therefore it was but right and just, that the people should pay for that change. John Bull has always had a whistle wherewith to amuse himself, and royalty is the dearest of all whistles, which he ever selected, or was forced to play upon. A change of such great political importance as that above alluded, to could not be supposed to be carried into effect with a becoming regard to the dignity and honour of the Regent, without a corresponding advance of money, and consequently “ the faithful Commons” advanced him £100.000 to defray the expence of the change of the Prince of Wales into a Prince Regent, and as the latter required a greater number of officials and menials to attend upon his royal person, than when he was simply Prince of Wales, the sum of £70.000 was granted to him for the additional expenses of the Royal Household; and in order to allay the murmurs of the people, which began to be heard, like the rumbling of the volcanic måtters in the crater of Vesuvius, before it is vomited forth, it was stated by the Ministers in defiance of all truth, that £10.000 was for the Regent personally, and £10.000 for the Queen, when it was notoriously known that the whole of the sum found its way into the pockets of the Prince Regent, and very soon, indeed, found its way out again. When we now take into our consideration, the payment of these enormous sums to which may be added in 1821 the £170.000, which were lavished recklessly, and needlessly lavished on that most delectable of all pageants, the coronation, which, although it might put a crown upon his head, gave the death blow to one who ought to have shared it with him; we shall find that the people of this country paid to this illustrious personage, above six millions sterling, previously to his assuming de facteo, the kingiy office. The parasites, and flatterers of Kings, the admirers of kingly dignity, may look on this picture, and blush at the rottenness of their cause. They may blush at the extravagance, which in a Prince is called munificence, but which in a private individual, would meet with censure and reprobation; they may blush at the private taste and public spirit of a man, who did nothing but revel in pomp and debauchery