Sivut kuvina
PDF
ePub

and the House of Lords' Amendments did not pass the House of Commons till the Monday. This precipitation made it impossible for us to execute our scheme; but, however, it shows the world upon how precarious a bottom they stand who are thus frighted at the least shadow. All due care shall be taken to work upon the different passions of those who seem at present to be thoroughly disaffected, and to keep up at the same time the spirit of our old friends. In order to it I shall print my observations on the City Bill, which I hope will contribute to increase their animosities.

The point of Lord Bolingbroke's Bill, which is now depending in the House of Commons, has plainly discovered the sentiments of some persons who before that were labouring to conceal their real inclinations. I should not much regard the zeal which Lord Bathurst and Sir William Wyndham expressed for that Lord's service, when their only pretence was the private friendship that had formerly subsisted between them. But when in a public meeting of some chosen Tories at Lord Bathurst's house, relating to this affair, Lord Bolingbroke's behaviour to your Majesty and your interest was started as an objection to the showing of him the least favour, I think the case altered, and that whoever gives his vote for or against that Lord is to consider himself as a person who by his conduct on that occasion is to appear a dutiful subject and servant to so good a master, or an advocate for treachery and corruption. Sir Christopher Musgrave, Sir Thomas Sebright, and Sir Jermyn Davers, out of: their utter detestation for your Majesty's enemies, bravely opposed the very bringing in of any Bill whatsoever ; and though several Tories were for it, yet it was the misfortune of many of them not to understand the case, and to believe that what Lord Bathurst and Sir William Wyndham said could not be intended to prejudice the party. Mr. Shippen, Strangways, and others were absent, which I believe was owing to an unguarded promise they had made not to oppose it. In the House of Lords our number is so small, that any behaviour there will be immaterial; and though I believe some of your Majesty's most dutiful subjects will not attend, yet I am sure they will not blame me if I bear my testimony against him, as having had an opportunity when I was in France, some years ago, of knowing personally the several particulars of his scandalous behaviour. I would not have your Majesty imagine any thing from this that my warmth should ever carry me to divide from the main body of the Jacobites, for I would at any time curb my passion or restrain the strongest inclinations to unite or reconcile them.

The next point of consequence now before the Parliament is the Bill disarming the Clans of Scotland, which is to be done with the utmost cruelty that the severest tyrant can invent. We are to battle it on Monday next in the House of Lords, and I shall act my part in it. We are afraid that this oppression should exasperate the Clans to oppose the execution of the law by force. But all due care will be taken to induce them to delay their resentments till a proper occasion shall offer. How happy should we be at this juncture to have some little assistance from a foreign Prince! - Lord Lechmere in all these cases votes and speaks with us. He at present seems to have thrown away the scabbard, but I am afraid he is actuated by resentment and not principle, and if he were to be made Chancellor (which the Ministers will never permit) would be as violent a prosecutor of those with whom he at present acts as any Whig of them all.

I propose, as soon as I receive your Majesty's leave, to go abroad for some time.

BISHOP ATTERBURY TO JAMES.

(Extract.)

(Paris) May 14. 1725. LORD LANSDOWNE's paragraph would have surprised me indeed, did I not consider under whose crafty and malicious influence he is ; and had I not received of late some letters from him, by which he seems to have entertained thoughts and resolutions that I scarce believe his breast would ever have harboured. I say, seems; for I do not think he will or can execute them on many accounts; and am of opinion he sent them to me on purpose that I should transmit them further: for which reason I did not and do not impart them. Were he and Filmore (Lord Mar) separated, I flatter myself I should dislodge these thoughts and bring him to reason. But as things stand now, I almost despair of seeing him; and till I do, think it will be better to say nothing of what has been written to me.

Nothing more need be said of Lord Bolingbroke, after I have sent you the copy of his petition, and you have observed from it in what a mean state of mind he is, and how low he has stooped to gain a very little point, not worth his while under any other view than that of its being sometime or other an inlet to greater; in which, however, he may be, and I hope will be, deceived; and then, I suppose, we shall hear of him again, if by that time there be any need of him.

[ocr errors][merged small]

(Extract.)

May 29. 1725. YOUR Majesty may be assured that no step taken by the Ministers has done them more prejudice in the opinion of all mankind than the screening the Earl of Macclesfield; and all parties, especially the old Whigs, are enraged to the greatest degree. Your Majesty will likewise observe the behaviour of the Earl of Strafford on Lord Bolingbroke's Bill. I wish the conduct of another Lord upon that occasion could be mentioned without astonishment.

BISHOP ATTERBURY TO JAMES.

(Extract.)

(Paris) June 25. 1725. It is now put beyond all doubt that you

have nothing to expect from hence while the strict friendship between England and France continues — and continue it will till matters are made up between Spain and France, of which there is not as yet, you find, Sir, any probability ; nor will it happen till the Emperor, whose influence governs all in Spain, has served his ends on France, whatever they are, by this alliance.

It is confessed by France that England is now its only ally, and consequently the alliance betwixt them must be now stricter than ever. And therefore there is nothing now to be managed with France beyond your private concerns which you have ordered to be solicited here, which may probably the rather succeed, because no applications of a more important kind will.

I have considered all the particulars mentioned in your letter, and obeyed all your commands as far as my sad state of health and the recluse solitary life I am obliged to lead have enabled me to do it. Had I more light into things, and more opportunity of gaining it, I might perhaps be somewhat more useful. As the case is with me, I do my best, and what is wanting in abilities endeavour to make out by my prayers for your prosperity and happiness.

DUKE OF WHARTON TO JAMES.

(Extract.)

Rotterdam, July 4. 1725. BEFORE I left London I communicated to Lord Orrery, Lord Strafford, Dr. Friend, Mr. Cæsar, and Major Smith, the reasons I had to believe that I should be employed abroad in your business, and took their advice as to many particulars relating to the execution of my enterprise. It is certain that, if possible, something should be attempted this summer during the Duke of Hanover's absence, and any foreign Prince who has the least inclination to serve your Majesty should upon this occasion lose no time. The Czarina might, if she would, send unto England and Scotland the fleet now ready to sail, and might surely do the work, for aught I know, without the least opposition ; and all resistance would be trifling, let the Whigs make the most of it!

DUKE OF WHARTON TO JAMES.

(Extract.)

Madrid, April 13. 1726. It would be taking too much of your

time to mention the particulars which passed at each conference with Ripperda relating to the unfortunate separation in the Royal Family, which was the first and chief motive of Mr. Collins (the King's) sending Lock (Duke of Wharton) hither. Prior (Duke of Wharton) endeavoured to explain Loftus's (the King's) conduct in its true light. Bentley (Duke of Ripperda) approved of it extremely, and said that the giving a Protestant governor to the Prince of Wales was a prudent and a wise step. He agreed that the King could not, nor ought not, to part with Lord Inverness. But at the same time assured me that it was impossible to bring Kelly and Gibson (the King and Queen of Spain) to reason upon the subject; for that they were, and the Duke of Ripperda feared would continue, implacable upon it. On Monday night the Duke of Ripperda acquainted the King and Queen of Spain that Lock (Duke of Wharton) was arrived, and had letters from his master for them; and the next day he told me that they had ordered him to receive the letters, and that perhaps they might answer them, but would not allow me the honour of waiting upon them. He said that the King of Spain thought the Queen should be

« EdellinenJatka »