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incapacity of the Speaker. No men could be more opposite in their habits and powers of mind than Addington and Canning. One all animation, fire, and brilliancy; the other, steadiness, formality, and coolness; the one eloquent, imaginative, sarcastic; the other slow, prosaic, and dull. Addington a good sample of red-tapists in common times; Canning, the type of adventurers in a political crisis. The wonder is, not that Canning should have laughed and railed at Addington at this period of his life, but that he should have been associated with him in office at another.
Ambitious, ardent, with his principles less formed than his attachments-with an Irish enthusiasm, and almost an Irish volatility-Canning regarded the appointment of Addington as a piece of impertinence; and soon learned to speak of it as a piece of perfidy. No delicacy restrained his tongue in private, no discretion curbed it in public. The querulous gibes which he poured into the ears of his friend Lord Malmesbury, alternated with the contemptuous lampoons which he flung into the daily press. He was very angry that Pitt was out of office, and more angry that Pitt supported those who were in office; but, perhaps, most angry of all because he was not in Pitt's confidence! His first letter to the new Premier, in which he ostentatiously announces his resignation, and begs him to inform the King that he was actuated by no other feeling than a conscientious notion of 'personal obligation to Mr Pitt,' and in which he signed himself Addington's most obedient humble servant,' is only an elaborately civil intimation of that fierce enmity which was soon destined to annoy Addington at every turn, and finally drive him from office.
At first it appears, from Lord Malmesbury, that both himself, and Canning, with others, looked upon Addington as a locum tenens. Addington had used this very term in speaking of himself to a member of Pitt's Administration. Pitt's followers naturally-and Pitt himself probably-looked upon him in the same light. At one time it was thought that Pitt had reconciled himself to the prejudices of the monarch, to the abandonment of the Catholic claims, and to the resumption of his post. But with the King's recovery these prospects became fainter. The King shrank from connexion with a minister who might commit him to a measure which, as he told the Duke of Portland, might make him betray his trust, forfeit his crown, and bring its framers to the gibbet.' During his malady, two visions had haunted him- the American Colonies and the Established Church. He had lost the former; he would do nothing to hurt the latter. Pitt, therefore, and his party, were to be sup
planted for a time by a more obedient and more Protestant Ministry. The only question, as it then appeared, was, for what time? Canning wished to hasten the moment of return; Pitt to defer it till some of the European difficulties, especially the Peace, were surmounted; while those nothingy' men (as Lord Malmesbury calls them) with whom Addington had surrounded himself, the Bragges, Hopkinses, &c., wanted to prolong it to an indefinite period. Pitt doubtless felt acutely the insignificance of his new position, and may have suffered himself to be betrayed into the scheme of a negotiation with the Court. But he could not with any face or fairness make any advances to Addington. Addington, on the other hand, could not make advances to Pitt, however much he may have at heart desired it. He had vacated an office which he much affected, and for which he was especially adapted, to take one of danger, difficulty, and annoyance. To resign would be to imply a conscious incapacity. Besides this, it would affront the King, who rejoiced in writing to his own 'Chancellor of the Exchequer.' He therefore remained, backed by the King, backed by some of Pitt's late colleagues, who preferred the urbane mediocrity of their present, to the cold haughtiness of their former, chief; and, for some time, ostensibly supported by Pitt himself. That Pitt may have reckoned on the humility, or the affection, or some other virtue of Addington's, inducing him to tender back the seals in favour of his predecessor, is likely enough. But there were two things which Pitt should have known better than he did-human nature, and the King's nature. The King had an obstinacy and a decision which were quite a match for the most resolute and imperious of ministers. Addington, too, Pitt's successor, was as different a man from Addington, Pitt's friend, as Tim Errand in Beau Clincher's clothes from Tim Errand in his own. Addington was too proud of his public dress to give it up in a hurry; and therefore, as Lord Malmesbury expresses it, he stiffened more and more every day against sharing any power with Pitt. Dr Pellew expends a great deal of space and zeal in attempting to prove that Addington did not regard himself as a locum tenens for another; and that he was not so regarded by the world. The first we can readily imagine. No one likes to believe himself a warming-pan. But the second we must beg leave to doubt. We will undertake to say that no one in all England, except Addington and the king, ever thought him anything else than a warming-pan.
The new Ministry met a Parliament composed of many parties. There were the Foxites, anxious for peace; the Windhamites, eager for war; the Grenvillites, desirous of an honour'able' peace, or a glorious war, but more desirous of a Grenville
Ministry; and, lastly, the Pittites, headed by Canning. these might combine against an administration which had few qualities that could be respected. and none that could be feared. To resist them required vigour, dexterity, and eloquence. The ministry had not a debater among them. The most urgent business of the session was the peace. Lord Hawkesbury was their foreign secretary, of whom the King at that time said, he had 'no head for business, no method, no punctuality.' He had as little eloquence, art, or tact. Canning, according to Lady H. Stanhope, called him a fool. He was, therefore, soon removed from the rude questioning of the Commons, to bolster up the kindred feebleness of the Duke of Portland in the Lords. To make amends for the absence of political and parliamentary abilities, Addington had arranged on the back treasury benches a strong reserve of friendly subordinates the Bragges, Vansittarts, Hopkinses, all 'nothingy' men, but vastly attached to Addington, and vastly attached to place. We must do him the justice to admit that few public men made more private friends, or rewarded them better. And it should also be added that he retained these friendships when he had ceased to be able to reward them.
One of Addington's first domestic measures was characteristic of his school, and ominous of his future acts. It was to suspend the Habeas Corpus Act, and renew the bill for the suppression of seditious meetings. The Doctor' knew only of Sangrado's remedy for political maladies. He always bled-for every kind of disaffection; and every expresion of discontent. A bad harvest, dear bread, and heavy taxation, neither palliated the evil in his mind, nor suggested its cure. He was not cruel, he was not bloodthirsty; but he took the usual course which those, of the school in which he had been brought up, would have taken. He used violent measures, and called them 'strong' and 'necessary.' But a more necessary measure than penal bills was peace. Six months after the accession of his ministry, preliminaries were signed in London; and a vote of approbation, though opposed by Grenville and Windham, was defended in the Commons by Pitt, Fox, and Sheridan. The recent capture of Copenhagen, and the victory of Alexandria, had elevated the spirits of the nation, but had not abated the desire of peace. The war party were now in a decided minority throughout the country. The exultation in the city and provinces was unbounded. Illuminations proclaimed the cessation of hostilities. Still the King only called it an experimental' peace. Pitt oscillated between his anxiety to secure a breathingtime for England, and his thirst for vengeance on France. The Duke of York spoke of it as Peace in a week, and war in a
month.' The Prince wrote Addington a letter, which reads something like a quiz. But the doubtful approbation of Pittthe eloquent opposition of Windham-the fears of the King and the Duke of York-would be counterbalanced in Addington's mind by letters of congratulation from Mr Ryder, Mrs Carter, and Dr Goddard. Sir R. Hill, too, a respectable member of that respectable class, the country gentlemen, was fully persuaded that Addington was placed at the helm to fulfil some great designs of Providence !' Other ladies and gentlemen inundated him with congratulations, and only faint signs appeared, as it were, in the far horizon, of that dissatisfaction and contempt which so soon supplied his enemies with weapons of assault.
So far Addington's administration had been free from serious vexation. He was hailed by the people at large as the restorer of tranquillity. The King wrote to him letters of which the kindliness was as remarkable as the English-called him his 'own' chancellor of the exchequer-assigned him for his residence the Royal Lodge in Richmond Park-trusted that their 'mutual affection would end only with their lives'—and abetted his partialities and his interests by making Law Chief-Justice of England, and his old friend Huntingford Bishop of Gloucester. The year 1802 opened with smiles and promise.
But this halcyon tranquillity did not last long. The clouds were gathering just where Addington was most anxious that all should be serene. Tierney, who, in the absence of Fox, had been the principal opponent of the late Premier, volunteered his services in defence of his successor. A debate on the financial state of the country provoked him to assail the 'too loose expenditure of public money,' and the remissness in the inspec'tion of accounts,' by which the late minister had increased the difficulties of the present. I have not,' he said, the delicacy of the right honourable gentleman which restrains him from complaining of such treatment. I say he has been hardly and 'cruelly used.' Addington, however, defended Pitt, who was absent. But Pitt forgot the defence in the original accusation, and wrote to Addington some captious letters, in which he complained of unkindness and indifference. The matter was explained, and Pitt appeared satisfied. But a friendship, when it once begins to crack, can be no more repaired than broken glass. The seeds of mistrust, discord, and jealousy were already sown.
In the spring of 1802 the peace of Amiens was definitively signed. The provisions were even at the time regarded as unequal to the terms which our victories at Copenhagen and Alexandria entitled us to expect. But they were not only thought unworthy of our late successes-they were also ambiguous. We
ceded the Cape to the Batavian republic; this was, in effect, ceding it to France. We restored almost all our conquests to the same power. But we complicated the arrangement about Malta with stipulations which could hardly fail to produce a rupture. Men became unreasonable as their alarms subsided. This was the first time for generations, they said, that England had retired from a continental conflict on terms of mere equality; the first when France had carried off the prize of colonial acquisition. An attack was opened in both Houses. Grenville moved a condemnatory address in the Lords. The masculine and indignant invective of Windham, a man who was jealous for the honour of England as a husband is jealous for the honour of his wife, stigmatised it more strongly in the Commons. The Fox party defended it on the plea that anything was better than war, especially such a war as the last. Sheridan laughed at it, while he voted for it. Pitt was silent. He was not in a humour to defend, and hardly in a position to attack. The conditions of the peace, it must be admitted, were not so honourable as he had himself sketched as the ultimatum of any treaty with France only a year before. But there appears no reason for believing, that peace was to be made, Pitt would now have been able to make a better. He was aware of this himself. He knew, as his niece once told him, that he was not the war minister his father had been. 'You are not the great statesman-it was your father!' He felt this, and was silent.
The real difficulty of the latter days of his own administration was now overcome; that which he longed to do, but shrank from doing, was done. He voted in a large majority for the ministry, and for the peace.
But it was from the beginning a hollow and insidious peace; it soon began to be an unpopular one. In the interval that elapsed between the acceptance of the preliminary and the final treaty, Napoleon had become head of the Cisalpine Republic. Other acquisitions and aggressions were soon to follow, and were already apprehended. Advantage was taken of these events and these suspicions, to raise a party against Addington. The expremier had contented himself with supporting Addington by a silent vote in Parliament. After the dissolution he had buried himself at Walmer, from which place he continued, however, to correspond with Addington in a friendly tone. Indeed, he revised his King's speech for the new Parliament. But all this time an insidious influence was perpetually at work, seeking to detach him from the ministry to which he was professedly allied. Among his faithful followers there was one to whom he was an idol rather than a leader, and who had never ceased imploring him