« ПредишнаНапред »
virtue, Mr. Pitt had united every elegant accomplishment ; and his manners and address were as irresistible as his eloquence. His character was, indeed, such as to form a fitter subject of poetic praise than historic description; and the following extracts will prove that the first poets of his timei Thomson and Hammond, did not lose the opportunity of painting from so rare a model.
The sair majestic paradise of Stowe * * * *
Nor does the elegant and pathetic Hammond sall short os Thomson in the following lines:
To Stowe's delightsul scenes I now repair,
In Cobham's smile to lose the gloom of care * * * * *
* Temple «f virtue in Stowe Gardens.
There Pitt in manners soft, in Friendship warm,
On the 2 3d os February, 1737, Mr. Pulteney (afterwards Earl of Bath) moved for an address to the King, humbly beseeching his Majesty to settle ioo,oool. per annum on the Prince of Wales.
The minister, Sir Robert IValpoU, opposed this motion with all his strength. The Prince being in opposition to him, he was sensible that a compliance with the motion, would as insallibly encrease the power of his Royal Highness, as it would diminish his pwn. Mr. Pitt is said to have spoken very ably in support os the motion ; as did Mr. Grenville, and Mr. Littelton, on the same side; but their speeches arc no where distinctly preserved. The substance of the debate on both sides, is stated only in the sorm of a general argument, for and against the motion.
The political papers qt the time, however, very clearly evince, that the minister smarted under the lash of Mr. Pitt's eloquence; for in one os the numbers of the Gazetteer, a paper avowedly written in support of the minister, and published soon after the close of the session, Mr. Pitt is characterized in terms, which are as illiberal as they are unjust. And which occa^ sioned the opposition paper of those times, the Craftsman, to desend him, in reply to the Gazetteer,
C»Ar. t. "Should a young man, says the Gazetteer, just v.^—^/ brought into the House of Commons, endeavour to rank •737- himself with the first in reputation and experience, would he not render himself ridiculous by the attempt, and even destroy the degree of same which he might otherwise deserve? A young man of my acquaintance, through an overbearing disposition, and a weak judgment, assuming the character of a great man, which he is no way able to support, is become the object of ridicule, instead of praise. My young man has the vanity to put himself in the place of Tully. But let him consider, that every one who has the same natural impersections with Tully, hss not therefore the same natural persections; though his neck should be as long, his body as slender, yet his voice may not be as sonorous, his actions may not be as just ** * * *Such a one may be deluded enough, to look upon himself as a person of real consequence, and not see that he is raised by a party, as a proper tool for their present purposes, and whom they can at any time pull down, when those purposes are served."
In answer to the preceding, the Craftsman,
No. 596, says,
"That he is not addicted to panegyric, but roused by an honest zeal to resent the blackest personal calumny, by exposing the heart and intention of the wretched author, in brow-beating rising virtue, and slandering a certain young gentleman in the grossest manner; one, who, in every situation, hath conducted himself in the nicest and discreetest manner; and by his thirst after learning, hath given reason to expect actions suitable to so happy and singular a beginning. The Gazetteer pretends to an acquaintance of the gentleman; but surely no • t man of the least honour would offer to sall so foul on his friend; neither would an acquaintance, of any value, or worth, advise him thus publickly, and thereby endeavour to expose him to the world. To shew how prejudicial to the good of one's country such treatmentof rising merit may be, let us consider, the great Demosthenes returning from the bar, discontented at his own performances, meeting such an adviser as this, persuading him, already too much prejudiced against his own impersections, not to attempt to establish his reputation as an orator, for
which which he was no way designed by nature. Such advice, Cm Ip. I. in the situation he was in, might perhaps have had its satal effect; and what, Oh Athenians, would you have 1737. lost in this case? not only the reputation of producing one of the brightest orators that ever lived, but the boldest desender of your liberties; and the greatest check to the Macedonian monarch? a man of whom Philip, by his own consession, stood more in awe, thaa of all the Grecian States, he sought to oppress."
The Pri Nce being this year deprived of his apartments at St. James's, and excluded from Court, several of his houshold resigned their places, and were succeeded by others; in this revolution Mr. Pitt was appointed Groom of the Bedchamber, and Mr. Lyttelton private Secretary.
Mr. Pitt's Speech in favour of a Reduction of the Army—On the Convention with Spain—On Admiral Haddock's Injiruflions—On Sir Charles Wager's Hill for the Encouragement of Seamen, —Reply to Mt. Horace Walpole.—Reply to Mr. Winnington.—On the Motion for an Address to remove Sir Robert Walpole.
M R. PITT's speeches during the remaining chap,ii> period of Sir Robert Walpoles administration, v^^-y^/ which have been preserved, are the seven 1138' following *.
* They are taken from Chandler's Collection of Parliamentary Debates. The authority is not very good ; but there is no other account of the Parliamentary Debates during this period. It must likewise be obseived, that none of Lord Chatham's speeches, prior to 1760, are to be wholly depended upon. And the only apology that can be made for giving them a place in this work, is, that they are generally supposed to contain a part, at least, of his argument.
Cfcjir. II". On the 4th of February, 1738, on the report v-pr^of the number of land forces, Mr. Pitt spoke in savour of a reduction, in reply to Sir Thomas Lumley Saunderson, afterwards Earl of Scarborough, who had spoken in support of the number proposed by the Minister.
Sir Thomas had faid, that he was surprised to hear any placemen arguing in savour of a reduction of the army, which Sir Joseph Jekyl, Mr. Lyttelton, &c. had done.
Mr. Pitt's Mr. Pitt began with saying, " That as to what the Speech in Honourable Gentleman had said, respecting those whom savour of he calls placemen, he would agree with him, that if they a reduc- were to be directed in their opinions by the places they tionoftheheld, they might unite for the support of each other, army. against the common good of the nation; but I hope, said he, none of them are under any such directions, I am sure the Hon. Gentleman, himself is not, and therefore t am convinced he is not serious, when he talks of being surprized at any placeman's declaring for a reduction of our army ; for, of all men, those who enjoy any places of prosit under our government ought to be the most cautious of loading the public with any unnecessary tax or expence ; because, as the places they possess generally bring them in more than their share of our taxes can amount to, it may be properly said, that by consenting to any article of public expence, they lay a load upon, others which they themselves bear no share of.
"I must look upon myself as a placeman as well as the Hon. Gentleman who spoke last. I am in the service of one of the branches of the royal samily, and think it my honour to be so; but I should not think it, if I were not as free to give my opinion upon any question that happens in this house, as I was before I had any such place, and, I believe from the behaviour of gentlemen, upon this very occasion, it will appear that all those who are in the service with me, are in the same state of freedom; because I believe they will, upon the question now before us, appear to be of different •pinions. But there is another set of placemen, whose