A History of England in the Eighteenth Century - Vol. IV

By William Edward Hartpole Lecky | Go to book overview

CHAPTER XV.

IT was wittily said by Lord North that the late Opposition had often accused him of issuing lying 'Gazettes,' but that he had certainly never issued any 'Gazette' which was half so false as that in which his successors announced their installation in office; for it consisted of a long succession of paragraphs, each of them announcing a new Whig appointment, and each of them beginning with the words, 'His Majesty has been pleased to appoint.' The letters of the King show, indeed, the feeling of despair and humiliation with which he accepted the new Ministry, and how completely he regarded it as a triumph over himself. The independence of America he believed to be the ruin of England, and his new ministers were pledged to acknowledge it, and some of them, in the opinion of the King, were largely responsible for the insurrection that had effected it. The emancipation of the royal power from ministerial thraldom, the restoration of the system of divided administrations, and the maintenance in Parliament of a King's party sufficiently powerful to control the march of affairs, had been the objects at which the King for twenty years had been steadily aiming. It was the avowed object of the Whig party to defeat them, and they were pledged to an extensive measure of economical reform, especially intended to restrict the Court influence in Parliament. Personally as well as politically several of the new ministers were most obnoxious to the King. For Rockingham he had mingled feelings of contempt and dislike. The Duke of Richmond had, he considered, insulted him by abstaining almost wholly for several years from his Court.1 Fox he regarded with utter abhorrence as a man without either private morals or public principles, and he seems to have very imper-

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1
Correspondence of George III. with Lord North, ii. 327.

-205-

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A History of England in the Eighteenth Century - Vol. IV
Table of contents

Table of contents

  • Title Page iii
  • Contents of the Fourth Volume v
  • Chapter XIV 1
  • Chapter XV 205
  • Chapter XVI - IRELAND, 1760-1778. 312
  • Chapter XVII - IRELAND, 1778-1782. 481
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