If this survey appears severe, let the motives be considered and weighed. The Bill rejected was of the most national concern; if rejected conscientiously, the grounds were those of convenience 원주임플란트 preferred to those of immutable right—and with what arms do tyrants begin to combat liberty but with those of necessity and convenience? But in the present case I cannot allow conscience to the House of Lords. The House of Commons,[21] almost to a man, approved the Bill. Five hundred men are probably as conscientious as two hundred. But it was evidently an affair of faction; and was rejected in compliment to Lord Mansfield, to mark whom it had been designed, and to gratify the private pique and public authority of the family of Yorke, the[116] head of which always considered what was the law, never on what grounds a law had been made.

On May 9th, the Bill was read by the Lords. Lord Hardwicke, after chicaning upon it, rather than attacking it openly, proposed to ask the opinions of the Judges. Lord Temple answered him with spirit, and reproached his Peers with being so long governed by one Law Lord, now by two. He read the strong introduction of the Earl of Devonshire to the conference with the Commons on the former Bill, and concluded with showing how improper it was to take the opinions of the Judges, which must be biassed, as the new Bill inflicted penalties on them if they refused the writ. This drew on more altercation between them, and much haughtiness from Lord Hardwicke, who urged that it was an improper time to press the Bill, when civil authority wanted the utmost support: an argument that suits the worst times and the worst Ministers; and never advanced with less truth, for no man living could say in what instance civil authority had wanted assistance. Lord Granville spoke for the Bill; but discovering afterwards how unwelcome it was at St. James’s, he attended it no more. Lord Mansfield opposed the Bill, and was seconded by the Duke of Newcastle, who, though approaching to seventy, still appeared in the full vigour of his nonsense.
Lord Chief Justice Willes, in the name of his brethren, desired time to consider the question till next term, as he himself was ill, and three of the order were obliged to attend for three days at the Old Bailey. But Lord Hardwicke, who the last year would have detained Admirals under sailing orders of the utmost consequence, affected to see danger in this delay, in which by the nature of the thing there could be no danger but in not giving it sufficient deliberation, and was urgent that the Judges should have but two days to consider the point: so little decency did that man observe in pursuing the dictates of his passions. But in this, as in the former case, the House, with all its complaisance, declined acquiescence, and allowed the Judges above a fortnight. It was not expected that Lord Hardwicke would have taken up the point so strongly, as Lord Mansfield, whom he did not love, was aimed at by the Bill; but Charles Yorke, his son, who resented that Pratt was preferred to him for Attorney-General, had declared against the Bill, even without consulting his father.

The calling upon the Judges for their solemn opinions was one of those dramatic exhibitions which had twice before been played off by the Ministry with success. No man supposed that Lord Hardwicke or Lord Mansfield wished, wanted, or would be directed by the sentiments of the rest, the subordinate[118] part of the order: but the Bill was to be thrown out, and the world to be amused by the gravity of the oracles that were to pronounce against it. The plan, I believe, in this, as in the former cases, was Lord Mansfield’s. In his own and Stone’s affair, the decorum of the Cabinet Council had made prodigious impression. The Admirals, who were rather struck with awe than inspired it, had served to give a sort of colour to the fate of Mr. Byng—but in the present instance this decoration of the theatre did not terminate so advantageously. The Cabinet Council had said little, but it was with dignity: the Admirals less, but that was the very thing desired. When the Judges came, they were to talk, to talk on law, and to explain that law by jargon. The field was so spacious and so inviting, that they ran into all the subtleties, distinctions, chicaneries, and absurdities of their profession. They contradicted one another, and no two of them but differed on some particular case. They exposed themselves and their instigators, who at last could not build upon any decision of those sages.

They began with Noel, the youngest Judge, a pompous man, of little solidity. Wilmot, whose manner was like Lord Mansfield’s, and very rapid and full of fire, spoke warmly against the Bill, though the intimate friend of Pratt and Legge. So did Legge’s brother, the Judge, and Adams, another[119] friend of Pratt. Wilmot and Noel differed in some points of not much moment. The former spoke with great applause, though too diffusely. Bathurst was strong against Wilmot; Smyth with him. Foster could not attend, being hindered by the illness of his wife; but he was zealous for the Bill, and published a large pamphlet in support of it. The rest were discordant and inconclusive; and so little was gained by the delivery of their opinions, that Lord Temple now pleaded for the Bill on the disagreement of the Judges; and moved a long question, the purport of which was, that an affidavit of confinement ought to be a probable cause for the Judges to grant the writ. Lord Lyttelton saying, that in any other place that question would be a defamatory libel on the Judges, Lord Temple started up and said, “This is impertinence I will not bear.”—This occasioned much confusion. Lord Lyttelton explained himself handsomely, saying he had applied words to words, not to persons: he was sorry if he had given offence; he had meant less offence to Lord Temple than to anybody: he revered the manes of their former friendship; he hoped the ashes were not extinguished past return. To all this Lord Temple said nothing; and when the House insisted on their giving their words that it should proceed no further, Lord Temple sullenly endeavoured to avoid it by shifting the asking of[120] pardon on Lord Lyttelton. The latter engaged with frankness to drop it—always the most sensible way when words have passed in public, which are sure of being prevented from further discussion. Lord Lyttelton was known to want no spirit: Lord Temple had been miserably deficient.

The fate of the Bill, which could not be procured by the sanction of the Judges, Lord Mansfield was forced to take on himself. He spoke for two hours and half: his voice and manner, composed of harmonious solemnity, were the least graces of his speech. I am not averse to own that I never heard so much argument, so much sense, so much oratory united. His deviations into the abstruse minutiæ of the Law served but as a foil to the luminous parts of the oration. Perhaps it was the only speech that, in my time at least, had real effect; that is, convinced many persons. Nor did I ever know how true a votary I was to liberty till I found that I was not one of the number staggered by that speech. I took as many notes of it as I possibly could; and prolix as they would be, I would give them to the reader, if it would not be injustice to Lord Mansfield to curtail and mangle, as I should by the want of connexion, so beautiful a thread of argumentation.

Lord Temple made a feeble answer—yet the force of truth was still so great, that notwithstanding the[121] visible operation of Lord Mansfield’s speech, they would not venture directly to reject the Bill. Lord Hardwicke agreed that all the Judges ought to have equal power in granting the writ, and said that he would move to order the Judges to bring in such a Bill against the next session. Lord Temple’s friends seemed glad to catch at this proposal; and the Bill was heard of no more![22]

The complexion of the rest of the year was military. Even the softest penetralia of the Court were threatened with storms. The Princess began to perceive an alteration in the ardour of Lord Bute, which grew less assiduous about her and increased towards her son. The Earl had attained such an ascendant over the Prince, that he became more remiss to the mother: and no doubt it was an easier function to lead the understanding of a youth, than to keep up to the spirit required by an experienced woman. The Prince even dropped hints against women interfering in politics. These clouds, however, did not burst; and the creatures of the Princess vindicated her from any breach with Lord Bute with as much earnestness as if their union had been to her honour.

The King of Prussia opened one of his ablest[122] campaigns. The same enemies still crowded upon him, though much of their vigour was abated by the extraordinary efforts they had made to overwhelm him: yet obliging him to make head against so many Armies, his fall at last seemed inevitable. Sweden, involved in domestic broils, rather kept up his attention, and divided his forces, than hurt him actively. The unwieldy numbers of Muscovites again advanced. The Czarina, inflexible in resentments, which she did not attend enough to the operations of government to enforce properly, had thought herself betrayed. Apraxin was recalled; the great Chancellor Bestucheff, inclined to England, was disgraced, and new Generals commissioned to execute her vengeance. The Empress-Queen had drained her own and her husband’s dominions to collect a decisive force: yet the vivacity of the King of Prussia, instead of entrenching wholly on the defensive, though he disposed various Armies to keep the Russians at bay and to cover Saxony, led him to a hardy step: after besieging and taking Schweidnitz in thirteen days, he instantaneously appeared in Moravia, the short road to Vienna. Daun had thought him preparing to attack Bohemia, when, to his surprise, he heard the King had opened the siege of Olmutz. On this theatre the alert Monarch and the cautious Marshal displayed all the resources of their art, and by the opposition[123] of their characters, and the balance of their talents, showed each other in every light that could create admiration.

But this is a theme, beyond my flight:—suffice it to say, that Daun repaired his oversight by cutting off the King’s convoys, and reducing him to raise the siege; and the King converted this check into new matter of glory, by suddenly starting from Daun, getting a march of two days, and piercing into Bohemia, where he made himself master of Konigsgratz, while Daun did not suspect that he had driven him from a siege to a conquest. In fact, it was not Daun alone that rescued Olmutz and saved Vienna: the Russians were pouring upon Brandenburgh, not more formidable by their designs than by their dreadful manner of executing them. Savage cruelty and devastation attended their march. They besieged Custrin with unspeakable fury, and reduced the brave Governor to defend a mountain of ashes and a few ruinous walls—the next step was Berlin. But I am advanced too far into the year, and must look back to other operations.

Mr. Pitt, no less enterprising than Frederick, but a little less informed, and a good deal less disposed to listen to information, determined to strike some mighty stroke on his part, that might combine his name with the glory of that King, and cement and justify their harmony. Unfortunately, his mind was[124] not purged of its vision of Rochfort, and he again chose the coast of France for the scene of his romance. A strong fleet was equipped of eighteen ships of the line, thirteen frigates, three sloops, four fire-ships, and two bomb-ketches, and carrying an Army of fourteen thousand landmen and six thousand marines. The Duke of Marlborough, on whom Lord George Sackville could not avoid attending, was appointed General. Commodore Howe was destined to lead the Fleet: on which Sir Edward Hawke struck his flag; but being persuaded to resume it, accompanied Lord Anson, who took the command himself. The mode of volunteers, which the Duke had always discouraged, now revived: Sir James Lowther, master of 40,000l. a year, Lord Downe, Sir John Armitage, and others, embarked with the expedition. Lord Granby at the same time came into the service, and was appointed Colonel of the Blues; and George Townshend, now there was no more question of the Duke, returned to the Army, and was restored on the foot of his former rank. The armament sailed on the first of June. Lord Anson, with the larger ships, kept out at sea; Howe led the transports, which for some days were kept back by contrary winds, but anchored on the fifth in Cancalle-bay, near St. Maloes. The troops landed without opposition; when the Commanders (as in former expeditions) seeming dispatched, so[125] scanty was their intelligence, to discover the coast of France, rather than to master it, soon perceived that the town was so strongly situated, and approachable only by a narrow causeway, that, after burning a parcel[23] of small vessels, they returned to their ships; and the French learned that they were not to be conquered by every Duke of Marlborough.

The Duke himself was personally brave, and was eager to land on the first possibility; but he had neither experience nor information, nor probability on his side adequate to such a bravado. However, it was well for him that his miscarriage happened under the auspices of Pitt, not of Fox. Here, it was said, his Grace and his troops remarked that Lord George Sackville was not among the first to court danger: and Howe, who never made friendship but at the mouth of a cannon, had conceived and expressed a strong aversion to him.[24] It is certain that both the Duke and Lord George were so sick of naval expeditions, that, after parading before Granvelle and Cherbourg, they returned with the [126]Fleet to St. Helen’s, and set out for the Army in Germany, where the Duke took the command of the English forces. General Blighe had been fetched from Ireland on that intent, but was obliged to cede to the superior influence of Marlborough;[25] and more cruelly was appointed to resume the thread of our silly expeditions, from which Mr. Pitt and the mob still expected I don’t know what of glory. Blighe was an elderly man, of no talents, brave, but in every other shape unfit for the destined service, supposing there was such a thing as fitness for that service. The armament sailed again, and Prince Edward embarked with them: and that some utility might at least be pretended from this vain expense, Prince Ferdinand, to flatter Pitt, wrote letter after letter to declare the great benefits he reaped from our expeditions, by which the attention and troops of France were divided: an affirmation of so little truth, that the Duke of Marlborough, in the hurry of their retreat, having left his silver tea-spoons behind him, the Duc d’Aiguillon, politely to mark contempt, sent them home by a cartel-ship.