Historical Sketches of Statesmen Who Flourished in the Time of George III - Vol. 2

By Lord Henry Brougham | Go to book overview

LORD ST. VINCENT -- LORD NELSON.

As it is difficult to find a more correct representation of the Addington ministry than the noble person of whom we have recently been speaking,* so the popularity of that government was, like his, very much owing to the moderation of both its talents and its principles. After the somewhat violent and overbearing, as well as warlike and arbitrary administration of Mr. Pitt, they who both made peace with France, composed the internal dissensions of the country, and restored its free constitution, presented at the same time to its confidence only second-rate genius in every department save two; -- a genius diluted and lowered to the moderate standard which suits the public taste. These two exceptions were the Law and the Navy. Of Lord Eldon we have already spoken; the present sketches would be imperfect if Lord St. Vincent were passed over in silence; for he was almost as distinguished among the statesmen as the warriors of his age.

This great captain, indeed, presented a union as rare as it was admirable, of the brightest qualities which can adorn both civil and military life. He early distinguished himself in the naval profession; and was associated with Wolfe in those operations against Quebec, which crowned our arms with imperishable glory, and loaded our policy with a burden not yet shaken off, though, as Lord St. Vincent early foresaw,

____________________
*
Lord Liverpool.

-156-

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