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nant to the resolutions of parliament and the gracious promise from the throne. The complaints of your despairing merchants, and the voice of England, have condemned it. Be the guilt of it upon the head of the adviser: God forbid that this committee should share the guilt by approving it !"

Pitt was now one of the acknowledged leaders of the opposition, and he gave the enemy no respite. On the 19th of October, 1739, war was declared against Spain; and the reluctant minister having once drawn the sword, seemed resolute to wield it effectively.

But here, again, Pitt stood like a rock in his way. On the 27th of January, 1741, Sir Charles Wager, First Lord of the Admiralty, introduced into parliament a bill for the encouragement and increase of seamen, and for the better and speedier manning of the navy. The measure had more than one very weak side, and they were all pounced upon directly by the prince's groom of the bedchamber. Among other arrangements proposed there was one which empowered justices of the peace, upon application under the sign manual, or by the Lord High Admiral, or the commissioners executing that office, to issue warrants to constables within their jurisdiction, to search either by day or by night for seamen; and for that purpose to enter, and if need were, to force open the door of any house, or other place, in which there was reason to suspect that seamen were concealed. Pitt rose, as soon as the opportunity offered, and thus noticed the arguments of the Attorney and Solicitor-general (Sir Dudley Ryder and Sir John Strange), who had preceded him:

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Sir, the two honorable and learned gentlemen who spoke in favor of this clause were pleased to show that our seamen are half slaves already, and now they modestly desire you should make them wholly so. Will this increase your number of seamen? or will it make those you have more willing to serve you? Can you expect that any man will make himself a slave if he can avoid it? Can you expec. that any man will breed his child up to be a slave? Can you expect that seamen will venture their lives or their limbs for a country that has made them slaves? or can you expect that any seaman will stay in the country, if he can by any means make his escape? Sir, if you pass this law, you must, in my opinion, do with your seamen as they do with their galleyslaves in France-you must chain them to their ships, or chain them in couples when they are ashore. But suppose this should both increase the number of your seamen, and render them more willing to serve you, it will render them incapable. It is a common observation, that when a man becomes a slave, he loses half his virtue.

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What will it signify to have your ships all manned to their full complement? Your men will have neither the courage nor the temptation to fight; they will strike to the first enemy that attacks them, because their condition cannot be made worse by a surrender. Our seamen have always been famous for a matchless alacrity and intrepidity in time of danger; this has saved many a British ship, when other seamen would have run below deck and left the ship to the mercy of the waves, or, perhaps, of a more cruel enemy, a pirate. For God's sake, sir, let us not, by our new projects, put our seamen into such a condition as must soon make them worse than the cowardly slaves of France and Spain."

Harassed by the ceaseless attacks of his eloquent opponent, and deserted first by one and then by another of his ancient supporters, Sir Robert Walpole accepted a peerage, and, as Earl of Orford, withdrew from the administration. Mr. Pelham, Mr. Sandys, Lord Carteret, and their friends, now took the chief management of affairs. But their policy, and in particular their system of continental alliances, differed in nothing from that of Walpole, and they became, as he had been, the objects of Pitt's vehement denunciations. He attacked their inconsistency on the 9th and 23d of March, 1742, when Lord Limerick moved for an inquiry into the proceedings of the defunct cabinet; and in December of the same year exposed, with equal bitterness and ability, the injustice and extravagance of the Hanoverian alliance. It was proposed by the minister that England should take into her pay 16,000 Hanoverian troops, in order that they might be employed in the Netherlands, in support of Maria Theresa, queen of Hungary. Pitt rose immediately after Henry Fox, who had spoken in support of the arrangement, though with a qualification, and said,—

"Sir, if the honorable gentleman determines to abandon his present sentiments as soon as any better measures are proposed, the ministry will quiclky be deprived of one of their ablest defenders; for I consider the measures hitherto pursued so weak and so pernicious, that scarcely any alteration can be proposed that will not be for the advantage of the nation."

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sequence of treaties, why may it not be equally re- | quired of Hanover? If it be an act of generosity, why should this country alone be obliged to why should the Elector of Hanover exert his liberality at the expense of Great Britain?

sacrifice her interests for those of others? or

"It is now too apparent, sir, that this great, this powerful, this mighty nation, is considered only as a province to a despicable electorate; and that in consequence of a scheme formed long ago, and invariably pursued, these troops are hired only to drain this unhappy country of its money That they have hitherto been of no use to Great Britian or to Austria, is evident beyond a doubt; and, therefore, it is plain that they are retained only for the purposes of Hanover."

In 1744 another change of administration took place. The Duke of Newcastle was called to the chief management of affairs, and proposed to the king that Pitt should take office as Secretary at War; but George II. could not forgive Pitt's opposition to the Hanoverian interests, and positively refused to receive him. Considerable inconvenience followed, which was overcome chiefly by Pitt's disinterested entreaty to his friends not to refuse office on his account; and the Newcastle cabinet continued to hold the reins till the 10th of February, 1746. But they had felt their own weakness from the first, and having again failed to overcome the king's disinclination to receive Pitt, they resigned. Mr. Pulteney, now created Earl of Bath, thereupon became First Lord of the Treasury. His effort to form a cabinet broke down, and Pitt's friends returning to their places, brought him along with them; first, as Vice-treasurer for Ireland, and then on the 6th of May as Paymaster to the Forces, with a seat in council.

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As the second son of a country gentleman, William Pitt had always been poor. Indeed, it was the res angusta which alone induced him to accept office in the household of Frederick Prince of Wales, and he seized the very first opportunity that presented itself of resigning it. In 1744 the celebrated Duchess of Marlborough died, and left him a legacy of £10,000, on account," as her will expresses it," of his merit in the noble defence he has made of the laws of England, and to prevent the ruin of his country." This fortune, though not great, was sufficient to place him in a position of comparative independence, and he immediately ceased to be groom of the bedchamber to the prince. The emoluments of office as paymaster of the forces proved, moreover, an acceptable addition to his income; though, to his honor be it recorded, he did not pocket a shilling

beyond the bare salary allowed; and at the period concerning which we now write, this deserves to be accepted as very high praise, for there was no man then in public life, from the highest to the lowest station, but looked upon the appropriation of waifs and strays as fair plunder. Chancellors and prime ministers openly accepted presents, not from foreign courts alone, but from prihad never been a paymaster who omitted to vate persons. Till Pitt's incumbency there appropriate to his own use the interest on public balances, or to exact a fee of one-half per cent. from moneys paid in the form of subsidy to any of the Continental powers. Pitt refused from the first to enrich himself by any such discreditable means. He paid the balances, as often as they accrued, into the Bank of England, and declined the fee which his predecessors used to expect as a matter of right. Pitt was arrogant, overbearing, and very difficult to manage, but he was quite as disinterested as his son; and we defy any man, in high life or in low, to exceed either of them in that respect.

In November, 1754, Pitt married Hester, daughter of Richard Grenville, Esq., of Wootten, in the county of Buckingham, and sister of Viscount Cobham, afterward Earl Temple, and of George and James Grenville. In 1755, he received an intimation from the king that his majesty had no further occasion for his services; and, together with Legge, the Chancellor of the Exchequer, seceded from the cabinet. This was owing to the disapprobation expressed by these two statesmen of the subsidiary treaties with Hesse Cassel and Russia, into which the king, without consulting his council, had entered. But, though deprived of office, they did not enter violently into opposition. On the contrary, when a rupture with France became inevitable, Pitt seconded the proposal of Viscount Barrington, Secretary at War, to increase the army, which was accordingly raised from about 20,000 to 35,000 men. In spite, however, of this indisposition unnecessarily to embarrass the councils of the Government, the war was not well managed. Minorca fell into the hands of the French. Admiral Byng was sacrificed. Oswego in America, and Calcutta in Asia, were both lost. A panic seized the Duke of Newcastle, and after vainly endeavoring to bring Pitt back again he resigned. A new cabinet was accordingly formed, with the Duke of Devonshire at its head, and Mr. Pitt and Mr. Legge formed part of it,-the

former as Secretary of State, the latter as Chancellor of the Exchequer.

There was still on the part of the king a rooted dislike to his servant,—a feeling which was carried to a still greater extreme by the Duke of Cumberland. The latter, indeed, refused to take command of the army which was to protect Hanover unless Pitt were removed from office; and once more Pitt, with Legge, and this time with Lord Temple, were sacrificed. But the disfavor of the court was more than compensated to the two former by the respect and admiration of the people. Numerous addresses of thanks poured in upon them from all quarters; and cities and boroughs loaded them with deeds of freedom, each enclosed in a gold box. The king's faction could not make head against this stream, the weight of which was further increased by the abortive issue of the Duke of Cumberland's military operations. Another change of administration became necessary, and the Duke of Newcastle assuming the post of First Lord of the Treasury, Pitt became again Secretary of State, and to all intents and purposes leader in the councils of the nation.

It is unnecessary to dwell at length upon the great events which characterized the interval between 1757 and 1762. However averse he might be to war, Pitt threw himself into the contest which he found raging with wisdom and vigor. The navies of France were swept from the face of the ocean. Canada was conquered, and numerous islands and stations in the West Indies, in Africa, and in Asia, subdued. Nor was his triumph over the prejudices of the Jacobites either less striking or less creditable to himself. He conquered Canada, and several of the West Indies, by bringing against them the stout right arms of the very clans which had followed Charles Edward to Derby, and fought at Falkirk and Culloden. It was a wise policy this which enlisted the military spirit of the Highlanders on the side of the established Government, and consummated by kindness the triumph which Lord Hardwicke's terrible, but necessary laws of proscription, had begun. But Pitt, though a great and most successful minister, was intolerably overbearing in the cabinet; and showed no disposition to yield, even in manner, to royalty itself. He ruled his colleagues with a rod of iron, and lost all hold except upon their fears. Hence a cabal formed itself against him, at the head of which stood Lord Bute; and the first opportunity was taken to force him out of the

king's councils. On the 25th of October, 1760, George II. died. He was succeeded by his grandson, George III.; and Pitt's days of influence and power became numbered. Negotiations for peace had been begun on the side of France, and were proceeding as favorably as an English minister could desire, when Charles III. came to the throne of Spain, with feelings strongly prejudiced in favor of his relative, Louis XV. Pitt was not long kept in doubt respecting the formation of the "family compact," and foreseeing that its consequences would be, not peace with France, but war with Spain, and, perhaps, with Sicily likewise, he determined to anticipate the plans of both. He proposed in the cabinet that the negotiations with France should be broken off, and that England should take the initiative in the inevitable quarrel with them. To his great surprise he found himself outvoted. He tried a second appeal in the council chamber, and was again defeated; whereupon he tendered his advice in writing to the young king, and there, likewise, met with a repulse. course now lay open to him except resignation. He went with his seals of office to St. James's, where the young king received him with such marks of kindness and respect, that the heart of the proud statesman was touched. His resignation could not, of course, be withdrawn; but he accepted, in token of the gratitude of the Crown, a peerage for his wife, and was not ashamed (he had no reason to be) of becoming a pensioner to the extent of £3000 a year.


A retiring statesman, whose descent into private life is softened by a pension, seldom fails to incur at least temporary unpopularity. This was the case with Pitt; but the storm, though sharp for the moment, soon blew over, and he became again the idol of the people. All that he had foretold as about to happen in regard to Spain came to pass. On the 4th of January, 1762, war was declared against that power, under circumstances far less favorable to England than would have attended the measure had Pitt's suggestions been acted upon. On the whole, however, the country had no cause to complain of the results of the contest. Several of Spain's most valuable settlements, of which Cuba was one, fell into the hands of the English, and the tide of success was flowing without a check, when negotiations for peace were entered into. Pitt heard of these, and left his bed, to which he had been confined for several days, to protest against them. Unable to stand, he was per

mitted to address the House from the bench on which he sat, but he fairly broke down ere he could reach the pith of his argument. His speech produced a great sensation, though it could not arrest the progress of events. Cuba, the most importan t conquest which England had ever made, was restored to Spain in exchange for Florida; an arrangement of which, down to the present day, England has good reason to regret the improvidence.

Will you

the bowels of your countrymen ?
quarrel with yourselves now the whole house of
Bourbon is united against you? While France
disturbs your fisheries in Newfoundland, embar-
rasses your slave-trade to Africa, and withholds
from your subjects in Canada their property stip-
ulated by treaty; while the ransom for the Ma-
nillas is denied by Spain, and its gallant con-
queror basely traduced into a mean plunderer,—
a gentleman whose noble and generous spirit
would do honor to the proudest grandee of the
country. The Americans have not acted in all
things with prudence and temper. The Ameri-
cans have been wronged. They have been
driven to madness by injustice. Will you punish
them for the madness which you have occasioned ?
Rather let prudence and temper come first from
this side. I will undertake for America that she

will follow the example. There are two lines in so applicable to you and your colonies, that I cannot help repeating them,—

a ballad of Prior's, of a man's behavior to his

It was about this time, or rather in the early part of the following year, that Sir William Pynsent, a Somerset baronet of ancient family, died and bequeathed to William Pitt the estate of Burton Pynsent, with a rental of £3000 a year. The baronet had no personal acquaintance with the legatee-wife, it is doubtful whether he had ever seen him; but he was a great admirer of Pitt's public character, and seems to have had no near relatives. So considerable an accession to means not previously abundant proved very acceptable to the recipient; but it did not abate one jot of the mental activity of the man. A martyr to gout, he still played a conspicuous part in parliament, though he steadily refused to become again a member of the cabinet which had so unceremoniously thrown him overboard.

From 1761 to 1766 Pitt remained excluded from the king's councils. He was, therefore, no party to the ill-judged Stamp Act, which had well-nigh precipitated, by a year or two, the rupture with the North American colonies; indeed, he opposed it when first brought forward vigorously, and contributed largely, by the eloquence and power of his denunciation, in effecting its repeal. The following extract from his speech on the latter occasion well deserves to be re

membered :

"A great deal has been said without doors of the power, of the strength, of America. It is a topic that ought to be cautiously meddled with. In a good cause, on a sound bottom, the force of this country can crush America to atoms. I know the valor of your troops; I know the skill of your officers. There is not a company of foot that has served in America out of which you may not pick a man of sufficient knowledge and experience to make a governor of a colony there. But on this ground-on the Stamp Act-when so many here will think it a crying injustice, I am one who will lift up my hands against it.

"In such a cause, even your success would be hazardous. America, if she fell, would fall like the strong man. She would embrace the pillars of the State, and pull down the Constitution along with her. Is this your boasted peace? To sheathe the sword, not in its scabbard, but in

'Be to her faults a little blind;

Be to her virtues very kind.'

"Upon the whole, I will beg leave to tell the House what is really my opinion. It is, that the mediately. That the reason for the repeal be asStamp Act be repealed, absolutely, totally, and imsigned, because it was founded on an erroneous principle. At the same time, let the sovereign authority of this country over the colonies be asserted in as strong terms as can be devised, and be made to extend to every point of legislation whatsoever. We may bind their trade, confine whatsoever, except that of taking their money out their manufactures, and exercise every power of their pockets without their consent."

It was during this interval, likewise, that the famous disputes between the House of Commons and John Wilkes occurred. Pitt was no admirer of Wilkes; but he still less admired the unconstitutional and impolitic proceedings of those who, in their abhorrence of a demagogue and a libeler, forgot what was due to the privileges of parliament, and the undoubted rights of the constituencies. He spoke against the sentence of expulsion, which was, however, as is well known, carried into offect.

of the bondage in which the great Whig The king was by this time heartily tired families seemed determined to keep him. His first attempt to emancipate himself, by placing Lord Bute at the head of the administration, had failed. He now endeavored, with the assistance of Lord Rockingham, to shake them off; but Lord Rockingham possessed small influence in parliament, and was quite as much a member of the clique at heart as many who followed more openly in the wake of the house of Russell. No

thing now remained, therefore, except to call upon Pitt to form an administration. He did so," and produced," says Burke, "such a piece of diversified mosaic, such a tesselated pavement without cement; here a bit of black stone, and there a bit of white-patriots and courtiers, king's friends and Republicans, Whigs and Tories, treacherous friends and open enemies; that it was, indeed, a very curious show, but utterly unsafe to touch, and unsure to stand on." Nor would the state of his own health permit the framer of the cabinet to watch, as it was right that he should, over its proceedings. The business of the House of Commons was too much for him, and he passed into the Lords as Earl of Chatham. Had he consulted his own fame more, and what he believed to be the best interests of the crown less, he would have retired from the cabinet as soon as the truth was forced upon him that physical strength enough to guide its deliberations was wanting. He failed to do this; and cannot, therefore, escape his share of responsibility for measures which resulted in the catastrophe which he had on former occasions contributed to postpone.

the enemy, gave up all for lost, and resolved to have peace on any terms. This was quite as much at variance with Lord Chatham's sense of right as the original ground of the war. He resolved, therefore, to oppose the motion; and rose from a sick bed, to which he had been long confined in the country, that he might carry his design into force. He proceeded to London, and sat in the Lord Chancellor's room till informed that the business of the debate was about to begin. Let the editor of the work which we are here reviewing tell the rest :

"He was then led into the House of Peers by two friends. He was dressed in a rich suit of black velvet, and covered up to the knees in fiannel. Within his large wig, little more of his countenance was to be seen than his aquiline its native fire. He looked like a dying man; yet nose and his penetrating eye, which retained all never was seen a figure of more dignity; he ap peared like a being of a superior species. The Lords stood up, and made a lane for him to pass to his seat, whilst, with a gracefulness of deportment for which he was so eminently distinguished, he bowed to them as he proceeded. Having taken his seat on the bench of the earls, he listened to the speech of the Duke of Richmond with the most profound attention.

"The reverence-the attention-the stillness of

In the year 1767, Charles Townsend introduced into the House of Commons a bill "After Lord Weymouth had spoken against the for taxing America, by levying duties on address, Lord Chatham rose from his seat slowly certain articles which the Americans were and with difficulty, leaning on his crutches, and not permitted to import, except from Great supported by his two friends. Taking one hand Britain. We need not so much as refer to from his crutch, he raised it, and, casting his eyes toward Heaven, said, 'I thank God that I have the consequences of this measure; but it is been enabled to come here this day to perform due to Lord Chatham not to place out of my duty, and to speak on a subject which has so record, that, as the scheme was none of his, deeply impressed my mind. I am old and infirm he hastened, in 1768, to mark his disappro--have one foot, more than one foot, in the grave val of it by withdrawing from the Govern--I have risen from my bed to stand up in the ment. It is just, also, to bear in mind, that cause of my country-perhaps never again to almost from the date of his return to power speak in this house!' till his resignation he labored under the pressure of a malady, which though not, perhaps, such as deserves to be described as an aberration of intellect, entirely unfitted him from taking part in public affairs. The portion of blame which attaches to him, as compared with that justly attributable to his colleagues, is very small. But if he erred in suffering himself to be made an involuntary party to the beginning of the strife, he more than made amends by the unwearied zeal which marked his efforts to heal breach. In 1770, his health being somewhat re-established, he returned to public life; and as a peer of parliament advocated measures of conciliation, which were unhappily rejected. At last, as is well known, the Government, which had repeatedly declined to entertain fair and honorable propositions from

the House was most affecting; if any one had dropped a handkerchief the noise would have been heard. At first Lord Chatham spoke in a very low and feeble tone; but as he grew warm, his voice rose, and became as harmonious as ever; oratorical and affecting, perhaps more than at any former period, both from his own situation, and from the importance of the subject on which he spoke. He gave the whole history of the Ameri

can war; of all the measures to which he had objected; and all the evil consequences which he had foretold; adding at the end of each period, theAnd so it proved.'

"In one part of his speech he ridiculed the apprehension of an invasion, and then recalled the invasion, a French invasion, a Dutch invasion, remembrance of former invasions,- A Spanish many noble lords must have read of in history; and some lords (looking keenly at one who sat near him) may remember a Scotch invasion.' My lords,' continued he, I rejoice that the


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