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eign, I doubt not, rejoices at this first appear- saw the weakness of a distracted ministry, and ance of union among his servants. His late were justified in treating you with contempt. Majesty, under the happy influence of a family They would probably have yielded in the first connection between his ministers, was relieved instance rather than hazard a rupture with this from the cares of government. A more active country; but, being once engaged, they can not prince may, perhaps, observe with suspicion, by retreat without dishonor. Common sense forewhat degrees an artful servant grows upon his sees consequences which have escaped your master, from the first unlimited professions of Grace's penetration. Either we suffer the French duty and attachment to the painful representa- to make an acquisition, the importance of which tion of the necessity of the royal service, and you have probably no conception of, or we opsoon, in regular progression, to the humble inso- pose them by an underhand management, which lence of dictating in all the obsequious forms of only disgraces us in the eyes of Europe, without peremptory submission. The interval is care- answering any purpose of policy or prudence. fully employed in forming connections, creating From secret, indiscreet assistance, a transition interests, collecting a party, and laying the foun- to some more open, decisive measures becomes dation of double marriages, until the deluded unavoidable, till at last we find ourselves principrince, who thought he had found a creature pros- pals in the war, and are obliged to hazard every tituted to his service, and insignificant enough to thing for an object which might have originally be always dependent upon his pleasure, finds been obtained without expense or danger. I am him at last too strong to be commanded, and too not versed in the politics of the North ; but this formidable to be removed.
I believe is certain, that half the money you Your Grace's public conduct, as a minister, have distributed to carry the expulsion of Mr. is but the counterpart of your private history- Wilkes, or even your secretary's share in the last the same inconsistency, the same contradictions. subscription, would have kept the Turks at your In America we trace you, from the first opposi- devotion. Was it economy, my Lord ? or did tion to the Stamp Act, on principles of conven- the coy resistance you have constantly met with ience, to Mr. Pitt's surrender of the right; then in the British Senate make you despair of corforward to Lord Rockingham's surrender of the rupting the Divan? Your friends, indeed, have fact; then back again to Lord Rockingham's the first claim upon your bounty; but if five hunddeclaration of the right; then forward to taxa- red pounds a year can be spared in pension to Sir tion with Mr. Townsend ; and, in the last in- John Moore, it would not have disgraced you to stance, from the gentle Conway's undetermined have allowed something to the secret service of discretion, to blood and compulsion with the the public.13 Duke of Bedford. 10 Yet, if we may believe the You will say, perhaps, that the situation of af. simplicity of Lord North’s eloquence, at the open- fairs at home demanded and engrossed the whole ing of next sessions you are once more to be pa- of your attention. Here, I confess you have been tron of America. Is this the wisdom of a great active. An amiable, accomplished prince ascends minister, or is it the vibration of a pendulum ? the throne under the happiest of all auspices, the Had you no opinion of your own, my Lord ? acclamations and united affections of his subOr was it the gratification of betraying every jects. The first measures of his reign, and even party with which you had been united, and of the odium of a Favorite, were not able to shake deserting every political principle in which you their attachments. Your services, my Lord, have had concurred?
been more successful. Since you were permitYour enemies may turn their eyes without re- ted to take the lead, we have seen the natural gret from this admirable system of provincial gov- effects of a system of government at once both ernment: they will find gratification enough in odious and contemptible. We have seen the the survey of your domestic and foreign policy. laws sometimes scandalously relaxed, sometimes
If, instead of disowning Lord Shelburne, the violently stretched beyond their tone. We have British court had interposed with dignity and firmness, you know, my Lord, that Corsica court of France to remonstrate in spirited terms would never have been invaded.11 The French against the occupation of Corsica by the French.
But Grafton and the rest of the ministry disavowed was understood), to dismiss Mr. Stuart Mackenzie, the instructions of their own secretary, and Lord brother of Lord Bute. Mr. Mackenzie was restored Shelburne resigned on the 21st of October, 1768, unas soon as the Duke retired; and Junius here de- der a sense of injury. scribes, in the most graphic manner, the way in 12 It was the policy of Great Britain, touching which the same man and his associates might be ex. " the politics of the North," to prevent Russia from pected to go on again, till he reached “the humble being weakened by Turkey in the war then existinsolence of dictating in all the obsequious forms of ing between them. French officers were aiding peremptory submission,” as was done to George II. the Turks and disciplining their troops. Junius in
10 This is substantially true. "The Duke of Graf- timates that a small sum comparatively might have ton," says a well-informed writer, " occasionally fa- prevented this, and served not only to curtail the vored Mr. Pitt's opinion, occasionally the Marquess growing power of the French in the Divan, but to of Rockingham's, and at last sided with Charles have transferred the ascendency to the English. Townsend in a determined resolution to carry the 13 Sir John Moore was an old Newmarket acsystem of taxation into effect at all hazards." quaintance of the Duke, who had squandered his
11 Lord Shelburne, then Secretary of Foreign Af private fortune, and had recently obtained from his fairs, had instructed the English embassador at the Grace a pension of £500 a year.
seen the sacred person of the sovereign insulted; would be immortal; and as for your personal charand, in profound peace, and with an undisputed acter, I will not, for the honor of human nature, title, the fidelity of his subjects brought by his suppose that you can wish to have it rememown servants into public question. Without bered. The condition of the present times is abilities, resolution, or interest, you have done desperate indeed; but there is a debt due to more than Lord Bute could accomplish with all those who come after us, and it is the historian's Scotland at his heels.
office to punish, though he can not correct. I Your Grace, little anxious, perhaps, either for do not give you to posterity as a pattern to impresent or future reputation, will not desire to itate, but as an example to deter; and as your be handed down in these colors to posterity. You conduct comprehends every thing that a wise or have reason to flatter yourself that the memory honest minister should avoid, I mean to make of your administration will survive even the forms you a negative instruction to your successors of a constitution which our ancestors vainly hoped forever.
TO HIS GRACE THE DUKE OF GRAFTON.1 MY LORD, If nature had given you an un- measures, the virulent exaggeration of party must derstanding qualified to keep pace with the wish- be employed to rouse and engage the passions es and principles of your heart, she would have of the people. You have now brought the mer. made you, perhaps, the most formidable minister its of your administration to an issue, on which that ever was employed, under a limited mon- every Englishman, of the narrowest capacity, arch, to accomplish the ruin of a free people. may determine for himself. It is not an alarm When neither the feelings of shame, the re- to the passions, but a calm appeal to the judgproaches of conscience, nor the dread of punish- ment of the people upon their own most essential ment, form any bar to the designs of a minister, interests. A more experienced minister would the people would have too much reason to la- not have hazarded a direct invasion of the first ment their condition, if they did not find some principles of the Constitution, before he had made resource in the weakness of his understanding. some progress in subduing the spirit of the peoWe owe it to the bounty of Providence, that the ple. With such a cause as yours, my Lord, it completest depravity of the heart is sometimes is not sufficient that you have the court at your strangely united with a confusion of the mind, devotion, unless you can find means to corrupt which counteracts the most favorite principles, or intimidate the jury. The collective body of and makes the same man treacherous without the people form that jury, and from their decisart, and a hypocrite without deceiving. The ion there is but one appeal. measures, for instance, in which your Grace's Whether you have talents to support you at activity has been chiefly exerted, as they were a crisis of such difficulty and danger, should long adopted without skill, should have been conduct- since have been considered. Judging truly of ed with more than common dexterity. But your disposition, you have perhaps mistaken the truly, my Lord, the execution has been as gross extent of your capacity. Good faith and folly as the design. By one decisive step you have have so long been received as synonymous terms, defeated all the arts of writing. You have fair- that the reverse of the proposition has grown ly confounded the intrigues of Opposition, and si- into credit, and every villain fancies himself a lenced the clamors of faction. A dark, ambig- man of abilities. It is the apprehension of your uous system might require and furnish the ma- friends, my Lord, that you have drawn some terials of ingenious illustration, and, in doubtful hasty conclusion of this sort, and that a partial
reliance upon your moral character has betrayed 11 As the King became unpopular through his per- you beyond the depth of your understanding. secution of Wilkes and for other causes, the Duke You have now carried things too far to retreat. of Grafton had made exertions to procure addresses You have plainly declared to the people what from various parts of the kingdom, expressive of the they are to expect from the continuance of your people's attachment to the Crown, . In this he sig administration. It is time for your Grace to connally failed, except in Scotland, and thus brought the fidelity of his Majesty's subjects into “public ques sider what you also may expect in return from tion."
their spirit and their resentment. * Dated July 8th, 1769. This Letter is directed Since the accession of our most gracious sovchiefly to one point-the daring step just taken by ereign to the throne, we have seen a system of the ministry, of seating Mr. Luttrell in the House of government which may well be called a reign of Commons to the exclusion of Mr. Wilkes, when the experiments. Parties of all denominations have former had received only 296 votes, and the latter been employed and dismissed. The advice of 1143 votes, and had been returned by the sheriff of the ablest men in this country has been repeatMiddlesex as the elected member. Junias does not enter into the argument, for the case was too clear edly called for and rejected; and when the royal to admit of extended reasoning. His object was to displeasure has been signified to a minister, the coovinde the King and the ministry, that the people marks of it have usually been proportioned to his would not endure so flagrant an act of violence. abilities and integrity. The spirit of the Favorite had some apparent influence upon every certain services to be performed for the Favoradministration ; and every set of ministers pre- ite's security, or to gratify his resentments, served an appearance of duration as long as they which your predecessors in office had the wissubmitted to that influence. But there were dom or the virtue not to undertake. The mo
ment this refractory spirit was discovered, their 2 If the reader wishes to understand the true state disgrace was determined. Lord Chatham, Mr. of parties at this time, and the real merits of the so Grenville, and Lord Rockingham have successmuch agitated question of favoritism, he will be aided by a consideration of the following facts:
ively had the honor to be dismissed, for preferWilliam III. was placed on the throne in the rev- ring their duty, as servants of the public, to those olution of 1689, by a union of the great Whig fami- compliances which were expected from their lies; and his successors were held there against the station. A submissive administration was at last efforts of the Jacobites by the same power. Hence gradually collected from the deserters of all parthe government of the country“ on Revolution prin- ties, interests, and connections; and nothing reciples," so often spoken of, was really, to a great mained but to find a leader for these gallant, extent, the government of the King himself as well well-disciplined troops. Stand forth, my Lord, as the country, by a union of these families power for thou art the man! Lord Bute found no reful enough to control Parliament. Junius has very graphically described, in the preceding Letter, the source of dependence or security in the proud, process by which George II., “ under the happy in- imposing superiority of Lord Chatham's abilities, fluence of a connection between his ministers, was the shrewd, inflexible judgment of Mr. Grenville, relieved of the cares of government.” When George nor in the mild but determined integrity of Lord III. came to the throne, he determined to break Rockingham. His views and situation required away from these shackles, and to rule according to a creature void of all these properties; and he his own views and feelings, selecting such men from was forced to go through every division, resoall parties as he considered best fitted to adminis- lution, composition, and refinement of political ter the government. If he had thrown himself into the hands of Lord Chatham for the accomplishment chemistry, before he happily arrived at the caput of this design, he would probably have succeeded. mortuum of vitriol in your Grace. Flat and inThat great statesman, by the splendor of his abili sipid in your retired state, but, brought into acties, and his unbounded influence with the body of tion, you become vitriol again. Such are the the people, might have raised up a counterpoise extremes of alternate indolence or fury which against the weight of those great family combina- have governed your whole administration. Your tions in the peerage. But George III. disliked the circumstances with regard to the people soon Great Commoner, and had no resource but his ear becoming desperate, like other honest servants, ly friend, Lord Bute. Bat this nobleman bad nei: you determined to involve the best of masters in ther the abilities nor the political influence which were necessary for the accomplishment of such a the same difficulties with yourself. We owe it scheme. As a Scotchman, particularly, he had to
to your Grace's well-directed labors, that your encounter the bitterest jealousy of the English. sovereign has been persuaded to doubt of the afAfter a brief effort to administer the government, he fections of his subjects, and the people to suspect gave up the attempt in despair. Still, there was a the virtues of their sovereign, at a time when wide-spread suspicion that he maintained an undue both were unquestionable. You have degraded influence over the King by secret advice and inter the royal dignity into a base, dishonorable comcourse. It seems now to be settled, however, that petition with Mr. Wilkes, nor had you abilities to such was not the fact. The complaint of his continuing to rule as Favorite, is now admitted to have carry even this last contemptible triumph over a been chiefly or wholly unfounded. But the King, private man, without the grossest violation of if he persevered in his plan, must have some agents the fundamental laws of the Constitution and and advisers. Hence, it was maintained by Mr. King's resolute determination to free himself from Burke, in his celebrated pamphlet entitled Thoughts the thraldom in which the great Revolution fami. on the Present Discontents, that there was a regu. lies' were prepared to bind him. They felt that the lar organization, a “cabinet behind the throne," reign of a haughty oligarchy was not merely degradwhich overruled the measures of the ostensible mining to the sovereign, but ruinous to the claims of istry. Sach, substantially, were the views of Ja 'new men' endowed with genius and capacity for nius, though he chose to give prominence to Lord affairs." The King, however, had not the requisite Bute as most hated by the people. He represents largeness or strength of understanding to carry out one ministry after another to have been sacrificed the design, and he had rejected the only man who through the influence of his Lordship. He treats could have enabled him to do it. He therefore the Duke of Grafton as the willing tool of this sys- threw himself into the hands of the Tories. But his tem of favoritism. All this was greatly exagger- quarrel with Wilkes was the great misfortune of ated. Private influence did probably exist to a lim- bis life. He seems at first to have been ignorant of ited extent; but the King's frequent changes of the law on the points in question, and his ministers ministers resulted partly from personal disgust, and had not the honesty and firmness to set him right. partly from his inability to carry on the government On the contrary, they went forward, at bis bidding, without calling in new strength. The great Whig into the most flagrant violations of the Constitution. families, in the mean time, felt indignant at these The great body of the nation became alienated in attempts of the King to free himself from their con their affections. On these points the attacks of Jatrol. Junius represented the feelings of these men; nius were just, and his services important in defendand there was much less of real patriotism in his at- ing the rights of the people. The King was defeat. tack on the King than he pretends. It was a strug- od; he was compelled to give up the contest; and gle for power. There were many," says an able subsequent votes of Parliament established the prin writer," among the Whig party, who rejoiced at the ciples for which Junius contended.
rights of the people. But these are rights, my | House of Commons must declare themselves not Lord, which you can no more annihilate than only independent of their constituents, but the deyou can the soil to which they are annexed. termined enemies of the Constitution. Consider, The question no longer turns upon points of na- my Lord, whether this be an extremity to which tional honor and security abroad, or on the de- their fears will permit them to advance; or, if grees of expediency and propriety of measures their protection should fail you, how far you are at home. It was not inconsistent that you should authorized to rely upon the sincerity of those abandon the cause of liberty in another country smiles, which a pious court lavishes without re(Corsica), which you had persecuted in your own; luctance upon a libertine by profession. It is and in the common arts of domestic corruption, not, indeed, the least of the thousand contradicwe miss no part of Sir Robert Walpole's system tions which attend you, that a man, marked to except his abilities. In this humble, imitative the world by the grossest violation of all cereline you might long have proceeded, safe and con- mony and decorum, should be the first servant temptible. You might probåbly never have risen of a court, in which prayers are morality, and to the dignity of being hated, and you might even kneeling is religion. Trust not too far to aphave been despised with moderation. But, it pearances, by which your predecessors have been seems, you meant to be distinguished; and to a deceived, though they have not been injured. mind like yours there was no other road to fame Even the best of princes may at last discover but by the destruction of a noble fabric, which that this is a contention in which every thing you thought had been too long the admiration may be lost, but nothing can be gained; and, as of mankind. The use you have made of the you became minister by accident, were adopted military force, introduced an alarming change in without choice, and continued without favor, be the mode of executing the laws. The arbitrary assured that, whenever an occasion presses, you appointment of Mr. Luttrell invades the founda- will be discarded without even the forms of retion of the laws themselves, as it manifestly gret. You will then have reason to be thanktransfers the right of legislation from those whom ful if you are permitted to retire to that seat the people have chosen to those whom they have of learning, which, in contemplation of the sysrejected. With a succession of such appoint- tem of your life, the comparative purity of your ments, we may soon see a House of Commons manners with those of their high steward [Lord collected, in the choice of which the other towns Sandwich), and a thousand other recommending and counties of England will have as little share circumstances, has chosen you to encourage the as the devoted county of Middlesex.
growing virtue of their youth, and to preside Yet I trust your Grace will find that the peo- over their education. Whenever the spirit of ple of this country are neither to be intimidated distributing prebends and bishoprics shall have by violent measures, nor deceived by refinement departed from you, you will find that learned When they see Mr. Luttrell seated in the House seminary perfectly recovered from the delirium of Commons by mere dint of power, and in di- of an installation, and, what in truth it ought to rect opposition to the choice of a whole county, be, once more a peaceful scene of slumber and they will not listen to those subtleties by which meditation. The venerable tutors of the unievery arbitrary exertion of authority is explained versity will no longer distress your modesty by into the law and privilege of Parliament. It re- proposing you for a pattern to their pupils. The quires no persuasion of argument, but simply the learned dullness of declamation will be silent; evidence of the senses, to convince them, that to and even the venal muse, though happiest in fic. transfer the right of election from the collective tion, will forget your virtues. 'Yet, for the bento the representative body of the people, contra- efit of the succeeding age, I could wish that your dicts all those ideas of a House of Commons retreat might be deferred until your morals shall which they have received from their forefathers, happily be ripened to that maturity of corruption and which they had already, though vainly, per- at which, philosophers tell us, the worst examhaps, delivered to their children. The princi- ples cease to be contagious. JUNIUS. ples on which this violent measure has been defended have added scorn to injury, and forced us
3 This attack on the moral and religious character to feel that we are not only oppressed, but in- of the King was wholly unmerited. A sovereign sulted.
can not always find ministers able to carry on the
government, whose private character he approves. With what force, my Lord, with what protec- George III. had no grimace in his religion; be was tion, are you prepared to meet the united detest. sincere and conscientious; and he at last wrought a ation of the people of England? The city of surprising change in the outward morals of the higher London has given a generous example to the classes, by the purity of his own household. All Enkingdom, in what manner a King of this country gland has borne testimony to the wide-spread and ought to be addressed; and I fancy, my Lord, it powerful influence of his reign in this respect. is not yet in your courage to stand between your Chancellor of the University of Cambridge with great
4 The Duke of Grafton had recently been installed sovereign and the addresses of his subjects. The
pomp. The poet Gray, who owed his professorship injuries you have done this country are such as
to the unsolicited patronage of the Duke, had com. demand not only redress, but vengeance. In posed his Ode for Music, to be performed on that oc. vain shall you look for protection to that venal casion, commencing, vote which you have already paid for: another Hence! avaunt! 'tis boly ground ! must be purchased; and, to save a minister, the Comus and his nightly crew, &c.
L E T T E R
TO HIS GRACE THE DUKE OF BEDFORD.I
My LORD,—You are so little accustomed to of your established character, and perhaps an receive any marks of respect or esteem from the insult to your understanding. You have nice public, that is, in the following lines, a compli- feelings, my Lord, if we may judge from your ment or expression of applause should escape resentments. Cautious, therefore, of giving ofme, I fear you would consider it as a mockery sense, where you have so little deserved it, I
· Dated September 19th, 1769. The Bedford fam- shall leave the illustration of your virtues to ily was at this time the richest in England, and, other hands. Your friends have a privilege to through its borough interest and wide-spread alli play upon the easiness of your temper, or posances, stood foremost in political influence. The sibly, they are better acquainted with your good present Duke was now sixty years old, and had qualities than I am. You have done good by spent half his life in the conflicts of party. He first stealth. The rest is upon record. You have held office under Lord Carteret, then under Mr. Pel still left ample room for speculation, when panham, and was made Viceroy of Ireland by Lord Chat
egyric is exhausted. ham in his first administration. Thus far he had acted as a Whig. But when Lord Bute drove ont Lord
You are indeed a very considerable man. The Chatham in 1761, he took the office of Privy Seal, highest rank, a splendid fortune, and a name, glomade vacant by the resignation of Chatham's broth- rious till it was yours, were sufficient to have super-in-law. Lord Temple, and was now considered as ported you with meaner abilities than I think you uniting his interests to those of the Favorite. When possess. From the first, you derived a constituLord Bute resigned in 1763, the influence of the tional claim to respect; from the second, a natuDuke became ascendant in the cabinet, and the ad- ral extensive authority; the last created a partial ministration, though ostensibly that of Mr. Gren expectation of hereditary virtues. The use you ville, has often been spoken of as the Duke of Bed. have made of these uncommon advantages might ford's. It was extremely unpopular, from the gen. have been more honorable to yourself, but could eral belief that Lord Bute still ruled as Favorite ; and in 1765 it gave way to the administration of
not be more instructive to mankind. We may Lord Rockingham, which threw the Duke of Bed trace it in the veneration of your country, in the ford wholly into the back-ground. The Duke of Graf choice of your friends, and in the accomplishton, when he became minister in 1767, through the ment of every sanguine hope which the public illness of Lord Chatham and the death of Charles might have conceived from the illustrious name Townsend, found it necessary to call in new strength, of Russell. and opened negotiations, as already mentioned, with
The eminence of your station gave you a comLord Rockingham on the one hand and the Duke of manding prospect of your duty. The road, Bedford on the other. The Rockingham Whigs had which led to honor, was open to your view, the strongest hopes of prevailing in these new arrangements, and of being made virtual masters of You could not lose it by mistake, and you had the government. But the influence of the Duke of no temptation to depart from it by design. Com. Bedford prevailed. Three of his dependents, Lords pare the natural dignity and importance of the Weymouth, Gower, and Sandwich, were received richest peer of England; the noble independinto the ministry; and the Duke of Bedford drew ence which he might have maintained in Parliaupon himself the bitterest resentment of the Rock: ment; and the real interest and respect which he ingham Whigs for thus depriving them of power, and might have acquired, not only in Parliament, but becoming, as they conceived, the savior of Lord Bute through the whole kingdom ; compare these gloand the Tories, and thus re-establishing the system rious distinctions with the ambition of holding a of secret influence in the closet. These events, as stated above, were the immediate cause which share in government, the emoluments of a place, led the writer of these Letters to come out under a the sale of a borough, or the purchase of a cornew signature, and in a bolder style of attack. Aft- poration ; and, though you may not regret the er assailing the Duke of Grafton, as we have seen virtues which create respect, you may see, with in the preceding letters, he now turns upon the Duke anguish, how much real importance and authorof Bedford in a spirit of still fiercer resentmert. He ity you have lost. Consider the character of an reviews the whole public and private conduct of his independent, virtuous Duke of Bedford ; imagine Grace, and endeavors to call up all the odium of past transactions to enkindle new jealousies against him, This and the next three paragraphs are among as about to give increased effect to a system of fa- the finest specimens of composition to be found in voritism in the closet; and seeks at the same time Junius. Nowhere has he made so happy a use of to overwhelm the Duke himself with a sense of dis. contrast. Commencing with a natural and expresshonor, baseness, and folly, which might make him ive image, he first sketches with admirable discrimshrink from the public eye. There is nothing in all ination the character and conduct to be expected in the writings of Junius that is more vehemently elo- the first peer of England, and then sets off against quent than the close of this letter. It is proper to it an artful and exaggerated representation of the add, that this eloquence is, in far too many cases, un political errors and private weaknesses of the Duke supported by facts.
of Bedford during the preceding thirty years.